On a number of occasions within the last six months I have cut myself in the one of the workshops.  Never particularly seriously; but once sufficiently painfully to change the colour of the surrounding air, and leave me hoping that the next door neighbour was out shopping at the time.
And on each of these occasions I have cursed because the first aid facilities which we have in the home have been totally inadequate for a significant emergency, involving a serious injury.  Fortunately, as I say, nothing to date has entered that category.  However, whilst busy sticking plasters onto my remaining digits, I have repeatedly promised myself that I would put together a ‘proper’ First Aid kit.

A useful and meaningfully practical selection of :-
Adhesive plasters, in a variety of sizes.
Rolls of plaster.
Sterile dressings.
Sharp scissors & tweezers.
Bandages of various types and sizes.
Eye wash solution and an eye bath.
And a tourniquet: for arterial and life threatening cuts.

Well, the immediate problem that I encountered was that, when researching First Aid kits, most are aimed at the domestic market; and are, from a commercial point of view, about as much use as a handbrake on a canoe.
At the other end of the spectrum are the commercial products which are aimed at one employee or one to ten employees or ten to fifty employees.  And for other than the kit designed for the single employee, require a remortgage of the employment property.
And the single employee kit is similarly incapable of holding a canoe stationary on a steep hill, at traffic lights.
So I trawled the net.  I purchased two empty standard green First Aid kit boxes.
One large for the dirty workshop: and one medium for the clean workshop.
I likewise sourced the contents for each, via the net.

And the result is that I now have comprehensive First Aid facilities for both workshops, at a significant saving over the cost of the multi-employee commercial units and consisting of infinitely more practical content than the single employee and domestic versions.

My hope now is that I never have to use either of them.

What an utter waste of money :oops:   :roll: :-)

Two years down the line, I can smugly report that the exercise was not, in fact, an utter waste of money.  I have used both of the first aid boxes on a number of occasions, for a variety of superficial injuries sustained either in the normal course of work activities; or due to being simply careless.

A Bad Day

Today commenced as a day like any other.  A working week day.
Utterly normal.   Except that today has been one of those days that I hate.

Please be assured that the following is not a ‘sympathy trip’.  It is merely a record of a day, in the same manner that I have recorded many other previous days.

The plan for today was to sort out the commencement to a prestigious turning job. Then make a high quality frame for a military commission.
But, to start off, by quickly taking a photo of the the tripod adaptor and inserting it into yesterday’s Tripod blog, in the designated spot.

From the moment I set up my camera and equipment I knew that it was going to be awful.
I have days like today as a result of my strokes.
My memory, particularly my short-term memory, is shot to pieces -
my concentration is nil -
my co-ordination is all over the place.
If I tell you that the two very mundane photos in the Tripod blog are the result of maybe 20 to 25 attempts to set up the camera and lens and get a decent shot: and that it has taken me over an hour to write this, and correct all of the mistakes in it:  :oops: :roll:
you will have some idea of just how bad it has been so far.

I was getting results from the D300 that I had no idea how I had achieved, nor any idea of how to correct them.
I couldn’t figure out whether bounced flash made it better, or worse.
In P, A or S, I couldn’t remember how to adjust the variable.
I kicked the tripod leg on the several occasions when I thought I had it all set up perfectly.  In the end, after many puerile attempts to edit in PS CS4, I managed to get the two shots which I have now inserted into the Tripod blog, because I resorted to Manual mode – but it took me 20 minutes, and possibly 10 attempts, to upload them because I couldn’t remember how to carry out the insertion process.

I went into the workshop and took the length of framing from the rack, for the military piece and almost dropped it.  It cost me over £13 per metre.
I can’t afford to mess a 3 metre length of that up.
So I very carefully put it back into the rack.

I’ll do no more today.  It is so demoralizing.
A thoroughly Bad Day.

Tomorrow will be better.  In fact, tomorrow will almost certainly be fine.
I have a bad day possible no more often than once or twice a month.
I’ve had to learn that no matter how devastating a bad day is, it is part of having suffered a stroke and I have to just accept that – being grateful that I’ll be able to return to normality tomorrow.  I suspect that had I not persevered with keeping myself fit and looking for ways to remain active – with the photography and the workshop – every day would, by now, be a bad day.   And I’d be thinking  “I’ll be glad when I’ve had enough of this.”

So, in truth, I have a very great deal to be thankful for.  :-)

Wednesday 9th January

Back to normal today – even yesterday evening was better.
This morning I cut and fitted the military frame, and have half finished the commission for the engineering company.   :lol:

Onwards & Upwards

I’ve completed the last of the Christmas, and post-Christmas, work.
I have an arrangement with clients, prior to Christmas, that if they require their order to be completed in time to be wrapped for a Christmas gift, they must finalize the order before a given date.  If they cannot do so, they may have to wait until after Christmas for their order to be completed.
99.9% of clients comply with this requirement without a murmur.
The 0.1% who  object to this contravention of their civil liberties are politely advised to take their business elsewhere.  Which for some obscure reason most appear reluctant to do; protesting that other service providers have expressed much the same sentiment – consequently, there being no-one else to go to.  (it is almost ~ but not quite ~ heart-breaking to listen to.)
For those who don’t/can’t make the cut-off date there is the assurance that their work will be completed, sequentially, as soon as possible, following the return to the workshop after the New Year.  For this amenable group of clients, the response is often “that’s fine – let me know when it’s ready for collection.”  Or “he/she is a big boy/girl now and doesn’t believe in Father Christmas anyway.”
For these, the work is always completed ASAP.

And these are the commissions which are now all complete.

For this coming week, I have a delicate job for a prestigious engineering company. Located locally, but known world-wide.  With a reputation for excellence.  So this will be precision work – to the highest standards. 
(the same as all of my other work, for everyone else then?) :lol: ;-)

I have three photographic commissions.  One fairly mundane.  But no less important, for that.   The other two, quite interesting and further afield.  I’m looking forward to those.
Then a day processing and editing the results of the three shoots.
And to round off the week – two fairly elaborate framing orders.
Plus, the completion of an on-going military presentation item.

2013, so far, is coming up smelling of roses‘  :-D

Positive Critique

One of the very satisfying characteristics of this website is that, increasingly, people who visit to view, to browse, or to purchase, feel sufficiently comfortable to comment upon aspects of the site which they enjoy, appreciate, like, dislike, find either helpful or, alternatively, unhelpful.  If you don’t administrate a website you may possibly have no appreciation for the help and support that such constructive comment provides.

Today, someone with whom I have a very long and satisfying relationship, explained to me that he gets distracted.        By the blogs.
Upon the Home page are a list of the most recent blogs on the left hand side, of which, this is one.  And a random title will, apparently, catch his eye.  So he reads it.  Then he will spot another one which he thinks may be of interest.  And after some considerable time reading a number of blogs, he leaves the website, having completely forgotten that his original intention was to purchase a picture frame, or an article of wood-turning, artwork or a photograph.  And whilst sales and commissions are not the sole aim and purpose of the website, they are nevertheless an integral part of it.  Viewing, enjoyment, relaxation, information accessibility and resource are also vital to the website structure: yet the observation is a very valid one – if the viewer cannot easily find what he or she entered the site to find, they may become distracted and immersed in another aspect of the site.
And consequently, miss the whole point of their visit.

So I have added some advice – a directive – to the ‘Welcome to TAA‘, in green, at the head of the Home page.  Whether this proves sufficient to enable visitors to comfortably, and conveniently, navigate the site to find what they’re seeking, remains to be seen.  I’m sure that someone will comment appropriately. :-D
All of you good folk who have already registered with the website can easily add your observations and comments to this, or any of the other blogs.
And, of course, anyone who visits, who wishes to register and participate responsibly, will always be assured of a very warm welcome.

Concentrated Effort

For the next couple of days I am going to apply myself, with concentrated effort, to do all of the things that I know I should be doing but, for a whole variety of very plausible reasons (to me at least) have not being done.
And I have become increasingly conscience struck by my lack of application.
[I'm not doing confessional because it's Sunday morning]  I’m on this website, in my ‘clean workshop’, in the warm, until my pride will no longer allow me to sit here typing: at which point I’ll grit my teeth, gird my loins, put my fleece and my apron on, and go into the (relatively cold) ‘dirty workshop’ and make a start.  :roll: :-?

On Tuesday, I have a gentleman coming to view the ‘matriarch’ Morso, with a view to purchase.  We’ve discussed the matter fully and agreed upon a suitable exchange rate. And subject the him being satisfied with his prospective purchase, he will take the ‘old lady’ back to Worcestershire.  :-D
In the interim, I don’t want to make too much mess in the workshop, as I’ve cleaned and tidied up, prior to his visit. And the Morso is cleaned and awaiting his inspection, under dust a sheet.

So today, I am going to make pens:lol:
Ball-point Pens.  Fountain Pens.  Propelling Pencils.  And Pen Sets.
‘Slimlines’ for the ladies and youngsters
A whole variety of ‘chunky’ styles, for the men.
And each of them with a varied selection of exotic woods.
oak ~ ash ~ sycamore ~ spalted beech ~ rosewood ~ walnut ~ cherry ~ plum ~ teak ~ zebrano.
Probably five or six of each.

That should keep me busy during the remainder of today and Monday.
And on Tuesday afternoon, I can photograph and catalogue them and put them up for sale, here on the website.
So if you’re looking for something appropriately classy and good quality ~ a bit different ~ with a realistic price tag, for presents for Christmas, a birthday, athank-you‘, at any time of the year, come and have a look, under the ‘Turning‘ tab, later in the week.  :-D

A pen selection is now available to purchase: maybe a stocking-fillers for Christmas.
Maybe for a coming birthday, for a friend or family member.
Have a look and see if anything takes your fancy  :-)