Unwinding after a busy season can be a bit like taking the twist from a 10” wide oak plank with a 1” chisel, but unwind we must. It’s a strange thing really for we woodworkers, but the best way to take away the kinks and curve balls out of life is to make the corner of a box or stitch some leather together for a new bit roll for your auger bits. Personally, when I feel stretched and stressed in any way at all, I clean. I clean anything, tidy things, especially my Creative Workspace. Getting off of the conveyor belt for me is putting things in order; sharpening my chisels and laying them into the chisel till with the one inch on one side and the 1/8th on the other. End for end they lay side by side and wait for me to pick them up again. So too my now very, very old Woden (not wooden) vise. I oil this once a week and it serves me without question. This is my right and my left hand, for it holds everything I work on with the saw and chisel’s edge. If I oil it well, wipe it down and blow out the sawdust now and then it responds kindly to my hands and arms and to my work.
As you move into the Christmas season I hope you find peace and rest and unneglected family ties to support and be supported by. I have put my tools down for a week as this natural break prepares me for new travels and my return to family and friends in the USA. The weather I will leave is more likely to be rain than snow, although the mountains behind my home are white with it. We finished this year’s filming until February when I fly back to the UK for three weeks to complete filming two very major projects. Whilst I am in the USA I will continue writing my next book, which I hope will be out sometime later in the year.
Today is another day of rest and unwinding and spending time with my wife and youngest son who is home for Christmas. I am going to the carboot sale just beyond the village where I live, to see if there are any tools to be had before I leave for the US. This will possibly be my last visit although there is one more weekend before I leave. I love Christmas and all that it means beyond the insanity of commerce.
I do hope that you have a wonderful Christmas. I will keep up with my blog posts over the season and look forward to seeing some of you in Baltimore in a couple of weeks.
Happy Christmas to everyone!