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 I love to get out the sandpaper.....

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PostSubject: I love to get out the sandpaper.....   Tue Oct 29, 2013 9:55 pm

My sister and I were cleaning out our mother's old house a few days ago and found an old cedar chest there. I remembered  seeing it in our closet when I was a child, and it was full of things like an old diary of my paternal grandmother in which she talked about her father's service during the Civil War. Back then, there were old family pictures  in the chest, trophies my ancestors had gotten for various sporting activities,  lots of crocheted doilies from the last century and early part of this one,  and just some amazing stuff that I remember seeing.
The chest was empty now and sitting out in a storage garage. It had grown very dark with age, and there were spider webs on it and roaches inside. I pulled it out, hoping to find some of the things I remembered from childhood, but I have yet to find out what my mother did with the contents. She can't remember anymore, and even did not truly remember ever having a cedar chest.  I continued to press her on it, and she finally told me that- " Oh yes, that's right, I didn't have a real cedar chest, but your dad made me one."
The chest was well made- my dad was apprentice to his father during his teen years and his dad was a carpenter.
I took it home,got out the old orbital sander, and went to work on it. I wish I had taken before and after pictures, but suffice to say, it's a thing of beauty now. I sanded down to the original cedar, put a coat of polyurethane on it, and the wood grain popped out beautifully. I only finished the outside though, you have to leave the inside of a cedar chest unfinished to retain that great smell when you open it up.
Not a very interesting story except that this thread is about hobbies and personal interests,  and I love to refinish old furniture and make it look new. Of course, if it's a "real antique", you aren't supposed to refinish it. I doubt a homemade cedar chest qualifies as an antique though, but it's as valuable to me as anything on Antiques Roadshow. My dad was quite a renaissance man.
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I love to get out the sandpaper.....
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