Updated: Apr 30, 2020
The snow had fallen the day before, but then rain had come. The snowblower labored through slush, and turned up mud and dug into the ground. The air turned cold at night, and the high temperature the next day was at midnight. In the morning, the snow was a hard crust, and what had melted yesterday was now ice.
Ah, snow removal and winter living is such a waste of time...you spend 8 hours cleaning from a storm, shoveling the walkway, the driveway, down to the woodshed, out to the workshop, and then, once you have all these nice pathways, it snows again. But, on the other hand, snow only falls for three--or four--months out of the year, and we gladly sacrifice eight hours a day, all year round, to sleeping. So, maybe snow removal in New England is as much a part of life as getting up in the morning (which has its own set of troubles). Okay, maybe I should say as much a part of life as eating, drinking, or working.
And work is also part of life, and a necessary part at that. Work can come in many forms, and here at A Vintage Wren, that means discussing designs with our clients, figuring what materials are needed for each piece, working with our local 'old Yankee' sawyers (with whom you might spend hours at a time as they tell you stories in their thick accents), and creating furniture and furnishings with sustainably harvested woods and solid techniques. And then, when the final coat of finish has been applied, the new owner arrives to take possession, or we deliver it. However, even with all of that time and energy expended, or maybe because of it, the pieces will last at least a lifetime.
Furniture is a part of everyone's life (like snow removal, for us). The table is the center of the family, and ours is no exception--it is here that we have meals, conversation, business meetings, music practice, visitors, it all happens, for the most part, at the table. Is your table the center of your house?
Looking across the road right now, I see our neighbor and his son-in-law, getting into the car. Son-in-law has gotten in the driver's seat, after loading our neighbors walker into the trunk. Our neighbor is old, but at one time he too was a furniture maker, and then in his retirement, a hobbyist woodworker, and now, he is to old to do that, too. But, his work still remains ~ gifts for his family, the large wooden nativity set at his church... A tree is old, but once it is dead, it lives on in peoples daily lives. Maybe they don't even notice. But solid wood, and solid craftsmanship is what makes good furniture. And good furniture is part of what makes a home. And if you love your home, your furniture should be no exception...kind of like a favorite snow shovel, conveniently placed for fast deployment for the next snow squall.
-- Ian Dunn