Ramblings from a South Central Texas Wood Butcher #10: The Warmth of Wood

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Even in South Central Texas, we have a fireplace in the house we had built in 2006. Almost went with a large window, but went with the fireplace instead. Luckily so, as we’ve had a couple of cold power out days where the fireplace was our only heat. Nice to be able to toss in logs, warm the room and enjoy the recliner.

Burned wood is not the only wood the provides warmth. I’ve been making wooden gifts as far back as I can remember. Of course, the earliest wooden gifts were of popsicle sticks, crudely glued and painted. Although I don’t do the best work, I’ve come a LONG way since then. Jewelry boxes, jewelry, toys, shelves, and more have been given to friends and loved ones. Although the recipients really appreciate them, they don’t really know the feeling I get in completing something special and giving it away.

The cross I recently completed, although fairly simple, is one of the most rewarding projects I’ve done. When Kristina asked if I would make her a cross, with her late boyfriend’s name, I said “Sure, it would be an honor.” “How much?” she asked. How much??? How could I take money for something like that. Shawn was one of my students, no way I could take payment.

Today I hand delivered the cross to Kristina, enjoying a nice visit with her and her mom. Seeing their eyes light up, and hearing their comments was all the payment I needed. Yeah, burning wood provides warmth, but giving it provides another kind of warmth, warmth of the soul.

-- Keith "Shin" Schindler

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I’m with you. I get a lot more satisfaction by gifting my projects. I have given a couple to my dog’s vet and he has knocked some off the bill after I refused payment.

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