My interest in woodworking developed later in life, but I did have a relatively eventful life prior to my woodworking. Living on a golf course here in Toronto, was how I spent my childhood and teen years. My dad had always been involved with golf at some level, and golf was also a way of life for me too. With a father who had been a pro, and who now was the club manager, I could take advantage of dad's teaching ability, and play as much golf as I wanted. We lived in a nice house provided by the golf club. I couldn't help but be a good golfer - even thought about turning pro, but thank goodness I didn't. Read on: you'll find out why.
My mom and dad had also given me piano lessons since the age of 4 - "being able to play the piano was a good way to meet people" they said. It paid benefits though because much of my adult life, was spent as a musician playing piano professionally, in and around Toronto. At age 32 I returned to college to become a photographer which I did until I took a disability retirement in 1993. That's why turning to professional golf at age 21 would have been a disaster. You see, my first wife had just given birth to our daughter in 1966 and 9 months later, I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis at age 23. There were a lot of health problems and hospitalizations which you might expect with MS, but for the most part, I was lucky. The extremely slow progression of my MS, allowed me to lead a somewhat normal life until about 1992 when it slowed me down to the point where I needed a cane if I had to walk a lot. On the last page of this site, there are LINKS, relating to Multiple Sclerosis.
That's how my interest in woodworkng developed. Being retired, I had a lot of time on my hands and needed a hobby. Never having been interested in making anything before, I purchased a Skil scrollsaw and as small projects seemed to work out well, I got more tools and tried more complex projects - I was hooked!
I find it quite humerous to think of myself as a woodworker. I had always been the type who couldn't do anything like this before - you know a real clutz. But here I am making things, that are actually quite nice. I was more surprised than anyone! When I was a teenager, my dad, who was just the opposite of me (he could make anything) had tried to show me the art of woodworking, but I wasn't interested. All I wanted to do was play golf and become the next Arnold Palmer. My dad passed away in 1967, but I think he must be smiling, looking down on me and saying "You should have listened when I tried to show you". I wouldn't have had to go through the self teaching and many mistakes I've made along the way.
I don't imagine I'll ever attain the fine quality of a craftsman cabinet maker, but I have made some projects which are really quite attractive, usefull and satisfying to have made. I have been able to pick up a bit of experience and technique that I felt might be useful for the new and intermediate woodworker. This then, is the purpose of the Grampa's Workshop web site. If someone can gain a bit of confidence and assistance from any of the things that are on my web page, then that's great.
Thanks for visiting Grampa's Workshop, and I hope you'll come back often. Projects and information will be updated and added regularly. Or,,, please join "The Grampa's Workshop Mailing List" to be notified when projects are added to this site. Please look through all of the pages, and please feel free to E-mail me with any comments, suggestions or criticisms you may have and, please let me know what you'd like to see on this site.
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