What's Your Craft?

  • LibrasLair

    Guess we attended the same bootcamp of life! I had four sons and couldn't afford daycare so worked many night shifts--manufacturing. I worked nights in a machine shop going home looking like I worked the mines. I've been one with the oil. And been bathed in chemicals that still make me shutter. I've run big machines--drilled sawed deburred and about anything else you can do to metal. When I couldn't take working the plants and nights shift anymore I started doing the handyman thing--furniture finishing and repairs and cleaning out houses after estate sales and doing the flea markets. I've always worked like a man and craved body movement--used to be a runner and dancer and did bodybuilding. I've learned now to take it back a notch cos the body rebounds so slow since I'm in my fifties. The carpel tunnel thing in my left arm is from years of playing guitar--how can I regret that? I'M a bit creaky but I still can make it up the roof to sweep. Strong woman rock!

  • Blmoon>>There were times I tore the braces off at night cause I couldn't stand anything on my wrists

    Sandran712>>I kept finding myself taking them off in my sleep and not remembering doing it.

  • LibrasLair>>The one I got carpal tunnel from I was the only woman and we assembled air tight parts for machines that put components in circuit boards

    Sandran712>>I used to work in a place that made baby furniture.Sort of like Graco..I used to make baby walkers.Using an air compressed screwdriver.I was in so much pain.It was unbearable.I developed arthritiis in the base of my thumb.Had to wear a custom made splint

  • Yes mother's will do anything to feed their children won't they.

  • Blmoon I see you have worked at some very interesting jobs too. I really think we have a lot in common in that respect. And as usual I am still the older one in the crowd. Living in Calif. growing up in a city I had a hard time getting some jobs fresh out of high school. They would say if you weren't 18 your were an insurance risk. Now it was the fast food industry that I was applying so it was a challenge until I turned 18. My mom didn't want to let me have her car for an 8 hour shift because that's how she transported my sister in her wheelchair. Her chair was bolted to the floor of my mom's Greenbrier van. For those who have never heard of it. It was the first vans that Chevy put out in I think as well as I can remember was 1962. So it may have been a few years later than that cause it seems like I was in high school when they got that van. I graduated in 66' so it's been a while back and not real sure of the yr. My parents really didn't want me to work anyway but never said why. But I had lots of factory work after my kids were born though. Hated that and really loved the more physical jobs. Sometimes it's really interesting to break away from the usual conversation on the forum. I really likes hearing what everyone does for relaxation.

  • My first factory job was in Chicago--I was underage and most the others there were illegal mostly from mexico with a mix of other imigrants. In other words the owner didn't care and got more for his buck praying on desperation. I've gotten poems from these experiences so I guess it was relevent--it gave me a wisdom I would have not gotten first hand. A lot of my poetry raises a voice for the oppressed and draws light on the injustices of our world. I've seen a lot--it has kept me honest. Eventualy in my late thirties I invested myself in education and my world changed. College opened doors and gave me skills that brought job possibilities that are a million miles from those factury days.

  • Oh I know what you mean I lived in San Diego for over 20 years after I got tired of the faster pace in the Los Angeles area. I wanted more of a country rural area for my kids to grow up in. I worked in factories there but it was for circuit board manufacturing and other related factories for many years. And I work with a lot of hispanics as well as growing up with them. You would think I would have learn more spanish but they thought it was very funny to teach me the bad words. I worked with many who lived with family here and sent the money back to their wives and children. I even trained many people who came here from Viet Nam and Cambodia to use automatic silk screen machines in the 80's. We did have some difficulties in communicating. But they were always smiling and so eager to learn. I liked living where we were a melting pot and all the cultures were interesting to talk to. I also delivered parts for Chrysler after my carpel tunnel fight cause I wasn't giving up and we had a bad habit. We liked to eat and wanted a roof over our heads. Spoiled that way I guess. Worked for a palm tree removal company till they went under also. Done a little of this and a little of that. Opened our own furniture restoration business too. Sold it all and moved to Missiouri for 6 years to take care of my in-laws. I was very glad to be out of the rat race in Calif.

  • I had a miss print in the first one talking about trying to get a job before I turned 18. I wasn't applying for fast food work. I never worked fast food in my life. Not enough money to be made so factory work was better wages.

  • Good Morning Gals,

    This is a very nice thread! It's nice to learn a little about everyone, in a positive way, not because of a crisis or time of hardship, like so often happens! This is a happy thread and I'd love to share with you, a little about myself too 🙂

    I'm an Ocean lover... grew up right on it! Loved running up and down the jetty, or the seawall, collecting shells, listening to the crashing waves at high tide. Cut my bare foot on barnacles more times than I can count! We moved away to Maine when I was ten, and far inland from the coast and I wasn't pleased. Now, I'm still here, but only a ten minute drive from the beach! YAY!

    I think maybe some of you who love the ocean and collecting shells and glass may be interested in hearing this story...

    In February 2008, I made a connection with the mother of one of my oldest son's friends, and I ended up going with her to Puerto Rico for a week, all expenses paid, in exchange for helping her pick sea glass off the beach there!! What an amazing experience... and it was right up my alley..lol. The reason she went there, was because this particular beach was loaded with it, in the most beautiful, and rare colors you could imagine. There was something about the way this beach faced the open ocean, and the currents and such, that brought such an abundance of superior aged glass in such an array of colors. She had already been once, prior to the time I went with her.

    The purpose of collecting the glass was for her "Sea Glass" jewelery boutique. She had taught herself how to drill small holes..in the smallest pieces of glass even, using a drummel (sp?) with dental sized drill bits. You have to do it a very special way, or else the glass will just crack. Then she would use the glass to make earrings, necklaces, rings, bracelets etc. This was a very clever woman who left an extremely well paying corporate career, to follow her dream of making sea glass jewelry and opening her own shop. The jewelry was extraordinary...so beautiful. Anyway, I was in all my glory on that beach in PR, basking in the sizzling sun, catching the misty spray coming of the water as the waves rolled up on the sandy beach. But let me tell you, at the end of the day... especially the first two, my back and neck, and the back of my legs, never hurt so much in my life. Talk about being sore! Well, I shouldn't complain...at all.. lol. Such a small price to pay for such an amazing vacation in such a glorious environment.

    An idea for you glass collectors...

    One thing we did, was find a glass covered picture frame, and she would glue pieces of glass down on the part of the frame that you see through the glass, in the shape of something like a sail boat, or a crab, or even a fish or a turtle. You could do anything really, but she typically liked to something "ocean" related. So basically, we would draw an outline of the object, and then fill it in, by gluing down different sized pieces of glass, in different colors too. If I'm not mistaken, once all the pieces were glued down, she would fill the cracks in with ... oh, what's that stuff you used to fill in the cracks on a tile floor? Dang it! I can't think of it, but one of you will probably know what I'm talking about..lol. After that was finished, she would put the frame together and have a lovely wall hanging or table decoration.

    Cooking, is something that I have always enjoyed, and excel at. I can make a killer clam dip and have often thought about trying to market it! I also enjoy writing. A little poetry, some prose, short stories and such. My major ambition is to write a book someday. I should probably get started huh! lol. I love all kinds of water sports, and of course summer is my favorite season. Camping, boating, gardening, and bike riding are also things I love to do!

    Darkness Angel, your doll house is fantastic! Such a creative idea...and fun too!

    LibrasLair, you mentioned Carpal Tunnel >>>"I live with it and spend a lot of the time with numbness. But I refuse to give up and stop living. Anything with a motor aggravates it I know and gripping, twisting and turning. I can't paint if they am numb because I will drop the brush. They're times holding the phone is difficult. I love to work on furniture and work in my yard. I do what I want and pay for it for about two weeks. The worse part is the ache that will wake you at night."<<<

    I can relate on every level. I have bilateral Carpal Tunnel (fancy for both hands), and I don't understand why, by 9 times out of 10, when it flares, it flares in BOTH hands at the same time or at least in the same day! In the past two months I've had quite a spell, the numbness and tingling travels all the way up my arm now and it's nearly unbearable. When you mentioned the ache, I was like "wow".. so I'm not the only one! For me, the ache doesn't come until AFTER the numbness and tingling finally subside for a while. I remember the first day it came on, this time, it was BAD... but it was the NEXT day that my whole hand and arm just ached like crazy. I was supposed to have surgery back in June, but we decided to try some sort of a shot... cortizone I think, and that seemed to work for a while, but it's worn off now, evidently. I have an appointment with a Neurologist next week so he can test the currents...but I forget what that's called to...lol. Geez, my memory is lousy..lol. Anyway, I had one several years ago, but I'm pretty sure they'll find it's worsened considerably, and I'm quite sure I'll end up having the surgery. Thing is, I don't really know what I did to get it, unless it was from waitressing on and off for most of my adult life and lifting heavy trays and such. I've never had a job where there was really any repetitive motion, so, I'm not sure why it started... except, I guess because I have small wrists, according to the surgeon I saw. I've been typing alot lately too, which probably doesn't help! Speaking of which, it's time to take a break..lol.

    I enjoyed reading all of your posts and Iook forward to hearing more!

    Blessings to all,


  • Hi all!

    I am loving this thread it has made me laugh and smile verily. I seem to collect things...like my grandfathers rocking chair that needs to be recaned AGAIN that i cant afford to have done again and had been thinking of gluing a cushion to a pressboard on...but now maybe Ill try to make a sea-glass seat for it! I have an old school heavy duty singer sewing machine with motor & foot pedal that broke for the last time and again, not only cant I afford to have it fixed.....I cant lift it out of the frame anymore either! so now it is pretty much a desk lamp where I store my dust collection! I also have a wonderful assortment of musical instruments that I cannot play (I just play around with them and wish I had talent) like guitar, harmonica, finger piano, tamborines, drums, rain sticks....and then there is the hawaiin tremolo that I defy anyone to learn to play much less recognize. They are all fun to pass around on holidays and barbeques though. I used to macrame knit and crochet when i was younger and have been thinking I should pick that up again but I hesitate because it seems I have already an extensive collection of throw blankets scarves and hats....but there is always gifting, I like to collect odd little figurines, dritwood and rocks. I used to write alot of poetry and short stories too ( I just dont have any left in me right now) I collect old books too. hmmmmm I think a new hobby for me this spring should be having yard sales!!!! and right now I should be getting to my creative sleeping!

  • darkness>>are all finished now, and the entire roof is painted black

    Sandran712>>Have you thought of putting furniture in the house???.I do not have the patience for house building.I thought it was cute.

  • Morning Sacogirl I know I have both hands also and I asked the doctor why when I am right handed and he told me my left hand is my helping hand so when I worked with the right one I am holding with the left. And I said well the left one hurts worse than the right and you tell me that the right one is worse than the left why is this. He just said that the right one is more numb so I can't feel it as easily. I did so much work one day when we had our own business that I couldn't get my hands up to feed myself. My daughter had to feed me and do my work so we weren't short handed. And she had come for a visit and got put to work. I love the story of going glass hunting and you painted such a beautiful picture for us. That I could visualize it. Yes you could fit a piece of wood in the hole of the cane chair also that you have painted. You can buy a sheet of cane and using a dremmil tool make a groove where the holes are to fit the reed into hold the cane in and use wood glue to hold it as well. Clamps should be used and some small pieces of wood between the clamp and the reed cause you will leave imprints in the reed. Also use a piece of sand paper on the reed so the wood doesn't stick to the reed from excess glue that will seep out as you clamp it. Use the smooth side of the paper or try some wax paper. Try to get as much glue off as possible tho to prevent more work for yourself. I really like the idea of the stone or glass pictures. Yes I really do miss the ocean and feeling the energy from standing on the beach and I really need to be close to water myself. Even if it's not the ocean. Great stories and some good ideas here. And be sure to soak the cane for a few days in water before you try to work with it. And don't cut the cane to fit the hole. Put it in the chair and after you have it secured then use a utility knife and trim it then. Being very careful not to cut into the reed or chair and of course your own fingers. Great doll house. Some hours of enjoyment there.

  • Darkness Angel there was a store that I bought certain things from for our business and I just tried to find their number or name in an old cardex. Couldn't find it but I think it was called the The WoodWorkers Store. And they had several locations. I went to one down south of us further into San Diego. Since it's been like around 10 or 11 yrs. they may not still be in business but try and find them if they still exist cause they have everything you could possible want for your doll house. But so would a store that carries model cars and train sets. They can have it all too.

  • Thanks everyone, for the nice comments and tips about my haunted dollhouse! I do go to several craft/hobby stores and have a lot of really cute items for the rooms. I buy things during Halloween, and also buy things from ebay. I already have the rooms laid out for what they're going to be.

    The upper right room is going to be a treasure room, and I've been collecting treasure chests and cute little baubles for that room. I also have a mama dragon and a litter of babies who will be guarding that treasure.

    The room below that (with the witch's landing pad) will be the witches' bedroom. I've already started decorating it, and have finished the walls and ceiling. The ceiling is blue with tiny glow-in-the-dark stars all over it.

    The bottom room below that is the living room, and I have all the furnishings, including a miniature crystal ball and ouija board.

    The bottom room on the left is the kitchen, and I've collected all kinds of things in jars for that room, lol.

    The room above that will be the bath room, and the room above that is going to be a game room/rumpus room, but with a spooky twist.

    I also have the headstones for the graveyard, creepy plants and a dead tree for the front, and who knows what else...oh, yah, ghosts, I have a couple of those. It's still a work in progress and I work on it when I have time. 🙂

  • Sounds really great and so creative. You go girl.

  • darkness>>The bottom room below that is the living room, and I have all the furnishings, including a miniature crystal ball and ouija board

    Sandran712>>That sounds sooo cool.I know you can buy a ouija board keychain.Has the little directional thingy to make it work inside the drawar of the keychain.

  • Oh, that keychain sounds really cute, Sandran. I bought mine off of ebay. Someone custom made it.

  • darkness>>Oh, that keychain sounds really cute, Sandran. I bought mine off of ebay. Someone custom made it.

    saandran712>>After awhile it fell apart.You know Made In China cra*p..But,the ouija board is scary.It came true for us..

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