Skip to main content

Little pleasures

Completing a tricky project, getting a check or landing a new commission all make you feel great. But there’s still a lot of joy from lesser things.

I’m talking about very small pleasures that happen when you least expect them, making you smile out loud (that’s a thing, right?). For no reason other than to collect several to use here later, I began jotting some down a few weeks ago. I would never have missed them if they never happened – but they all brightened my day.

• I went to a Big Box store yesterday to get several gallons of paint and they had all-new shopping carts. Brand new, never used, no wobbly wheels and rolled smooth as silk.

• Meanwhile, although I was going to buy it anyway, the particular paint I needed happened to be on sale. A twofer of pleasant surprises in one shopping trip.

• While mounting ceiling shop lights I fumbled and dropped a screw. Not only did it not hit the floor, it landed atop my stepladder, bounced and settled perfectly upright on the head. Cool.

• Sally decided to move stuff around in our storage room (again), moving something I needed (again). Checking alternate locations I found it on the first try. That’ll never repeat.

• I mismarked a workpiece that was the wrong size, of course, when cut. By sheer luck, it was the exact size I needed for a different component.

• Doing something entirely unrelated to its use, I chanced upon one of my favorite, and oldest, screwdrivers. I thought I’d lost it during our move.

• Finally, I’ve had no luck finding just the right live-edge slab for a table project. While rummaging through some old, filthy furniture at a barn sale, there was an even filthier 4'-foot long slab of 2-1/4"-thick cherry leaning against a milk can. It wasn’t even for sale, but the guy gave it to me for five bucks.

Related Articles

It’s the little things

Tools companies drive me nuts. They come out with the neatest tools with lots of bells and whistles, but sometimes miss the basics.

A little excitement

Buying a major new woodshop machine is always exciting. But sometimes a small, minor tool can be just as much fun to look forward to.

Little project, big reward

I love big, involved projects, but the smaller ones around this time of year are often the most rewarding.

AJBLOG-1007 image

My little corner or the world

Remember your very first real shop? Sally was digging around through photographs and came across a picture of my very first real, permanent woodshop. Oh, I’d been woodworking for more than a decade, but it was always in a not-a-real-shop location, like the patio, driveway, porch or any other area where I could swing a hammer and make some sawdust.