Short Stories, Poems and Life

Why I Started Making Crosses

When I was maybe fifty years old, I went to an event and for the entertainment they had a fortune teller. My date suggested we have our fortunes told. I didn’t have much faith in fortune tellers, but I played along.

My date went first and I honestly can’t remember what the fortune teller told her; however, I do remember what she said to me “I see you working with wood in your future”. I just giggled and thought to myself there was no way she could tell the future, I didn’t have an ounce of carpentry skills.

When I retired from the corporate world, I needed to find hobby. In the past I had made wreaths out of real pinecones, acorns and other natural materials then gave them away as gifts and I enjoyed it. The wreaths were big and could take up a lot of time, so I wanted to find something smaller.

At the time, pinecone crosses were big, you could find them at all the big retail stores, at a costly price. I stared thinking I could make them at a much lower price, so I gave it a try.

I made the crosses out of wood and really enjoyed it. I would give these handmade crosses as gifts to family and friends and they would always tell me I should make more and sell them.

So, I decided to go for it and called my new hobby business Recycled Natures. I came up with this name because most of the material I used were from things other people were getting ride off.

For example, I used coffee grounds to cover the wood cross. I would make my coffee, then dry out the coffee grinds, once dry I would glue them to the wood cross. I have also used crushed eggshells (others throw them in their garden, but most throw them away).

One of my most popular crosses is my yellow flower cross. The center for the flower is a cherry pit painted black, the leaves are pistachio shells painted yellow, a twig for the stem and the leaves are cantaloupe seeds painted green. It is very pretty.

Another popular one is my pinecone cross. The petals are individually removed from pinecones, trimmed then hot glued in an overlapping pattern onto a wood frame cross, then sprayed with shellac. I have also used twigs and pebbles to glue on my crosses, they turned out nice.

My all time favorite cross design is called Lucky Cross. This cross has seven small crosses layered on the wood base. I really have loved imagining new ideas for my crosses, whatever comes to my mind, I just give it a try. I knew I would never become rich with my hobby business; but I sure do enjoy it.

Sadly, the great supplier I used based in Chicago sold out and the new company doesn’t carry the same wood. I have been unable to find a new supplier at a reasonable price, so I just might be forced out of business.

But there is no doubt I really have enjoyed designing my crosses and working with wood. Not only was it fun, I met some interesting people when I would set up a booth at local events.

I suppose that fortune teller I saw so many years ago might have actually known what she was talking about when she told me I would be working with wood in my future!

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