Author Archive

NYC MoMA visit – Greene & Greene Furniture and Japanese Tsubas

On the afternoon of November 21, 2011 we visited The Metropolitan Mueseum of Art in New York, one of the world’s great museums.  They have a small collection of Blacker House furniture on display: an armchair, a library table, and a chandelier.  Shown below are a few snapshots we took of the pieces.  Hopefully the closeups will be of interest to readers, and maybe even some use to fellow furnituremakers. 

Most Greene and Greene afficionados are aware that Japanese tsubas (sword guards) were very influential in the Greene brothers’ work.  Near the museum’s G&G collection, in the Armor and Weapons section, was a wonderful display of tsubas.  Snapshots of most of them are below.  Note the intricate inlay and texturing on some of them. 

Click on a picture to download a full-size image.   These snapshots were taken with Barry’s iPhone camera, so please forgive any marginal quality pictures. 

Barry by the Greene & Greeene display. These are the first examples that he's seen "in person"!



Paulina Lake Loop Hike

On August 26, 2011, Beth, Ruairí and Barry hiked the 7½ mile Lakeshore Trail around Paulina Lake. Paulina and East Lakes are located in the Newberry Caldera about 20 miles southeast of Sunriver in Central Oregon.  Afterwards we drove to the top of Paulina Peak (at 8000′ elevation) for a birds’ eye view of the lake and the surrounding countryside. 

As usual, click on any picture for a full-resolution copy. 

Ruairí and Barry at the trailhead at the Day Use parking lot


Ruairí and Beth at the start of the hike. Those walking sticks we bought in France 10 years ago came in handy!

Ruairí taking a photo of Paulina Peak from the western shore

Ruairí's photo


Ruairí and Beth at the Paulina Peak Overlook parking lot, with the lake we just hiked around in the background

Paulina Lake from the summit. Note the obsidian flow on the right

On the right is the famous "highest public restroom in Oregon"

Ruairí and Barry at the very top of the summit, above the parking lot

USGS benchmark at the peak. Note stamped elevation of 8009'

Troop 581 Car Wash

Some Pictures (and a video!) from this Saturday’s Car Wash fundraiser.  Click on any photo to download the full resolution version.

Finally, a video of the Car Wash Special Vehicle Operations crew (i.e., the guys out back), doing their stuff:

Pics from National Night Out

Some photos from the 08/02/11 National Night Out event in Banks.  Ruairí’s Boy Scout troop participated.  Click on any pic to download the full-size version.

Cool X-Ray

I saw my surgeon for what was probably the last time yesterday.  While I was there I snapped a picture of the X-rays that were taken a couple of months ago, about a week and a half after the surgery.  Even the doc said this was “a pretty cool picture”.  You can clearly see the hole that was drilled in the radial tuberosity on the radius bone, into which the end of the tendon was attached.  At the same spot you can see the “endobutton”, a small piece of titanium that the tendon was sutured to.  The endobutton was then passed through the hole in the bone and rotated, fastening the tendon in place.  The four small other pieces of metal are clips placed on small veins to control bleeding during surgery.  The veins eventually regnerate around them.

And no, this small amount of metal doesn’t affect airport metal detectors.  😉

Banks Honor Band Performance

A video of a performance of the Banks Honor Band from January 2011, in the wonderful Sappoose High School Auditorium.  Ruairí is playing the tuba.

A naked arm!

For the past month my arm has been spending alot of time in a removable splint.  Kinda a pain, but a lot better than the non-removable I had the first month after surgery.  At least I didn’t have to sleep in this one.  I was instructed to do  gradual stretches several times a day in order to get back my range of motion so that I’d be able to completely straighten my arm:

This week I saw my surgeon, and I don't need the splint anymore, yea!

Close-up of the incision, and a bicep where it's supposed to be (not all rolled up near the shoulder)

What a drag it is getting old …

Hi this is Barry. I’m sitting on the couch typing this one-handed, a bit loopy from Percocet, because sometimes at least, Mick was right. 😉

As some of may have heard from Beth, I sustained a serious arm injury a few weeks ago, while doing something simple and commonplace. Our new big screen TV had an early failure on one of its boards, and I was at home with the TV repairman watching him fix the set. Once he was done, I picked up one end of the stand to swing it back into place closer to the wall. As it got near its final position, there wasn’t enough room to hold it with both arms, so I switched to holding it with just my right arm. Mistake. When I did that, I felt brief but intense pain, and heard a “pop” that was loud enough for the TV repair guy to hear it, too.

As I found out later, that pop was the sound of my bicep tendon detaching from my forearm bone. I had surgery yesterday to re-attach it. My surgeon said the surgery went really well, with a good, clean attachment. It should heal up good as new if I let it heal properly, which I fully intend to do.

I had never heard of this type of injury, and would not have really thought it was possible. You’d think the bicep would complain way before you reached the rupture point of the tendon. I found out that this typically happens to men 40-60 years old, usually when lifting something heavy. My surgeon, who says he repairs these all the time, says I’m a “textbook case”. I was swinging one end of a 215 lb. piece of furniture, which I guess is heavy enough to do some damage.

Beth took this picture last night, a few hours after surgery and still feeling pretty out of it:

This video is a good overview of the injury; I thought it described what I felt to a “T”:

Willamette University Family Weekend

Some snapshots and a short video from last Fall’s Family Weekend at Erin’s college.  ‘lots of fun, and interesting seminars!

Erin, Ruairi and Beth

Erin and Blitz

Barry and Blitz


Blitz joins Erin and the other cheerleaders to cheer on the team!


Xmas Build

For family gifts this year we made some bowls out of Oregon Walnut, red Padauk, and European Beech. It was a fun project and we hope the recipients enjoy them. They look great in the “group shot”:

The following pics show some of the steps along the way. As usual, you can click on one of the thumbnails below to see a full-size image.