Back To Woodworking

Ok so now I’ve come full circle. Winter is gone and we enjoyed a sunny 70 degree day today. The cataract surgery is a total success and the initial soreness and fuzzy vision is now gone. I see everything clearly and quite vividly. This all means I was ready to get some woodworking accomplished today as I had a couple of indoor assembly jobs awaiting my attention. Top of my “To Do” list was to assemble my new Sjobergs SJO-33309 Smart Workstation Pro Vise. Made in Sweden this all hardwood vice is attractive, solid hardwood and portable. It’s designed to clamp to any workbench or table. Dog holes are conveniently already drilled as the workstation comes with 4 spring-loaded dogs designed to fit snugly on the table top and jaws of the workstation. It will prove to be a valuable ally when clamped to any of my 4 workbenches.

I intend to permanently mount a sheet of 1/2″ Baltic Birch plywood under the workstation and add a drawer under the workstation top for additional dogs and accessories. That way I’ll alway keep the necessary parts stored in the workstation. What fun!

Sjobergs Smart Workstation Pro Vise


Beauty Is In The Eye Of The Beholder

I’m sure you’ve heard that saying in your lifetime. I used to preach it to my photography students back in Portland, OR. You don’t have to go far to capture the wonders and blessings from God put in front of us to enjoy. You need only to look. Iz Campbell and Annette had to put up with my preaching about the unlimited beauty that makes itself open to photography on a daily basis. I can walk 5 feet from my front door and capture wondrous beauty in the plants, animals and people around me. I love to just sit with my camera on a bench I built with my own hands just outside my front door. Th

ere I’m treated to squirrels, rabbits, chipmunks and birds. I’m overjoyed with great flowers grown by my nextdoor neighbor, Al. His flowers attract dozens of species of birds including bluejays, colorful finches and delightful hummingbirds.

So open your eyes, smile and start noticing the wonderful world around you. As Liz would say, “Here kitty kitty”!


Share Your World – April 23, 2018

Share Your World – April 23, 2018

If you could have an endless supply of any food, what would you get?

This is going to sound strange but my favorite meal is cottage cheese over boiled new potatoes. Being on o low carb diabetic diet I haven’t enjoyed that dis in over a year but given the ability to have and eat all that I want that would be tops on my list. I might even add a fresh, unrefrigerated, ripe tomato to that meal. 🙂

List at least five movies or books that cheer you up.

  1. UP – a Disney/Pixar animated movie with Ed Asner doing the main character’s voice
  2. Monty Python’s Quest For The Grail – No one said I was sane!
  3. Young Frankenstein – Always in my top 10 list of all time favorite movies
  4. Nell – Jodie Foster deserved an academy award for her role in this movie
  5. The Bible – This book saved my life many times

If you were a mouse in your house in the evening, what would you see your family doing?

Unfortunately I’m old, single and live alone. That actually describes my life condition for the past 25 years. Not to worry as I’m happy and please, no mice. LOL

What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week?

I’m in the middle of cataract surgery on both eyes. My right eye is recovering nicely from the surgery I had on April 18. My final surgery has just been scheduled for May 25. I look forward to a whole new world with brand new eyes.

Final Surgery Date Set

Yesterday afternoon I received a call from my VA eye clinic setting a date for my 2nd cataract surgery for my left eye. It’s set for May 25 for now. That was to be the same day for my final checkup on my right eye that had surgery on April 18. Each surgery includes 3 post surgery appointments to assure that everything is working as expected. My right eye is recovering nicely, allowing me clear vision without corrective lenses. As the paperwork arrives for my 2nd eye surgery the follow up appointments will fall into place. I’ll need to make transportation arrangements for all the post op dates and times.

I’m grateful for having my iMac desktop computer during these times. At 21.5″ it’s huge monitor allows me to adjust the size of the font on my screen. That compensates nicely for the loss of magnification I used to have with my prescription lenses. I’ve still got a few months to go before everything is worked out so that I can get back to some semblance of normalcy.  I’ve already removed the lens from my present pair of glasses as my right eye no longer requires a corrective lens. It will be just over a month from today before I can stop wearing glasses altogether. That will seem very strange for sure. I’ve been wearing prescription glasses for 63 years.

Pool Party For Samudra

I love the new pools that were built in Elephant World at the Oregon Zoo. It’s great for the zoo visitors who now have a clear overhead view from the walkways that are elevated over the pool. Image the fun the elephants are having. Here’s an example on one of them taking a casual dip while entertaining the crowds.

Loss of a Dear Friend

I just heard news of the passing of one of my dear friends in Portland, OR. Phyllis was one of our senior McDonald group that gathered every day in our special booth. Phyllis was actually one of the McDonald workers who had worked there for over 25 years. She passed away April 19 at the age of 88.


Finally, Looking Forward To Spring

I think we’ve turned the corner and moved away from Winter into Spring. We still had a light frost on car windshield this past week with morning temperatures just above the 32 degree mark but the days are rising into the mid 60s now and sunny. There are signs of spring everywhere as neighborhood trees are all budding as daffodils and tulips are showing up in flower boxes in my housing community. My next door neighbor, Al, has planted his flower garden once again and fenced it off from the squirrels, chipmunks and rabbits. The fence also keeps out those pesky grandkids with their grubby little hands reaching for a beautiful flower.

Gladiolus 02

Gladiolus 03

Gladiolus 05

Custom Puzzles Frames

Zen Art Designs has given us a box of wooden puzzles for our Senior Center in Uxbridge, MA. After completing them it would be nice if they could be displayed for a time before being broken down to individual puzzle pieces as a challenge to others. As a woodworker I accept that challenge. I’ve seen and handled Zen Art Design’s manufactured frames and feel these are easily made from materials I have on hand. I’ll make a few after carefully measuring the completed puzzles. There are no measurements on the puzzle boxes as part of the challenge to building the puzzle. Below is an example of a completed puzzle in a puzzle frame.

Puzzle in Wooden Frame

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Any kind of seating

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Any kind of seating

There’s a story behind every picture. This shot was taken at Camp 18 in one of their back lots. The scene was a very old railway car that had be placed near the edge of the woods for future renovation and use in one of the restaurant’s exhibitions. It was not yet ready for the public to see so there were no stairs available to gain access to the inside. Being a photographer on the hunt for an unusual shot I hauled myself into the car, camera dangling from around my neck. I took a couple of frames and then realized there was no easy way out. I had no choice but to jump out of the doorway to the ground below. That, was a mistake! My bad left knee collapsed as I hit the ground sending me, my spectacles and my camera sprawling to the ground. Fortunately I wasn’t seriously injured. Luckily there was nobody around to see this fat man lying on the ground. It took me a while to find my glasses and limp back to my motorcycle to return home.

Were the shots worth it? Yes! Would I ever do such a foolish thing like that again, NO! I’m lucky I didn’t break my leg or neck pulling that stunt. I’ve reminded myself due to that incident that I need to give up jumping out of trains, moving or not! 🙂

Passenger Car B&W