My mother told me that I started to take a real interest in the few carpentry tools we had around home when I was seven years old, back in 1938. She said I would sit on the sunny side of the house for hours taking apart orange crates that came to our village once a year. For a boy with nothing but homemade toys, these sweet smelling soft pine wooden crates were the mother lode.
Our curved-claw hammer was missing a claw, so I pulled the small nails out of the crate with a pair of pliers. Once the crate was apart, I fashioned the wood into play objects, a small house, a wagon, boxes and shelves to hold things. It was here that I learned one of my first carpentry lessons: to hold my thumb a good distance from the head of the nail.
This is Christmas eve day. I trust that those who are making lovely things to share with friends and family are nearly done. Lovely things are best not rushed, and it's when we get in a hurry and lose consciousness for a moment that thumbs are struck. Slow down, be mindful in your labors. Enjoy the moment and the exercise of making.
Larry Haun's book is on very special sale at the Taunton Store, as are some of my own books. Follow this link. To find my own books, use the search term, Doug Stowe.
Make, fix, create, and increase the likelihood that others receive the gift of learning likewise.