Tuesday, December 26, 2017

And I Thank Them For Mothering Me When I Needed It

"I have been mothered by a whole tribe of women, some who had children of their own, and some who didn't. I thank God for each of them, and thank them for mothering me when I needed it, and for giving me such a rich variety of images for what it means to be a mother. Mother's Day is about looking through our lives and recognizing the act of mothering everywhere we see it, and more than that, recognizing that when any of us mother - when we listen, nurture, nourish, protect - we're doing sacred work." -
Shauna Niequist

I wish I could make gifts from my shop for every occasion, but there's just not enough time. So, I seem to sprinkle gifts around to my loved ones whenever I can. This year I decided to make some trays for two ladies who've had a lasting impact on my life. 

Sue became a part of my life in high school, Pam in college. Both women had a special maternal influence that lasted into adulthood. Although I don't get to spend the time with them I'd like, I always know these two ladies are praying and pulling for me. It means a lot. 

So for Christmas this year I made two matching trays for Pam and Sue. They were made using a plane, a saw, some chisels, and my hands. I selected some of the prettiest cherry and curly maple I've come across. 

Not just any dovetails. For the first time I attempted houndstooth, or Trinity dovetails. They required a lot of focus.

Once glued up I had to use some ingenuity to plane the sides. There's some blocks taped to my leg vise under the towel.  

The finish was Minwax Tung Oil, wiped on several coats. Then wet sanded with Howard's Feed'n'Wax.

The Trays turned out pretty well. I sure hope my Mama's enjoy them.

Attached to the trays was a note that read something like this:
"If you look closely at the trays, you’ll find small, tragic flaws - just like the man who made them. But if you run your fingers across the edges and the lines, you’ll know that there’s a lot of love in the hands that made these pieces. It’s the kind of agape/motherly unconditional love that a man only learns from women who dare to love him in such a manner."

Dan Westfall
December 26, 2017