14. Learning to Carve

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” ~Gandhi

A few months ago, Kit showed me a YouTube video of a man chainsaw carving all sorts of incredible creatures. My first thought was, “That’s f’ing awesome! I could never do that.”

That’s where I stopped myself. You see, in the last few years I’ve made it a goal of mine to become more aware of negative or “fear-based” thinking and to try to replace that type of thinking with better thoughts.

So I decided that I COULD do that.

It was an audacious proclamation, especially since I had never used a chainsaw before in my life. Heck, I’d never done any kind of real woodworking before in my life (please spare me the dirty jokes here 😉 )

To be honest, chainsaws actually scared me (kind of like how guns used to scare me). So I asked Kit to show me how to use one. I was so nervous with that first cut that I wondered again if I could really do something like that.

Kit assured me that I’d get more comfortable with it the more I practiced (just like with guns). In fact, he warned me that most mistakes tend to happen when one gets a little too comfortable, so a “healthy” amount of fear was a good thing. It would keep me alert, he said.

So I practiced making simple cuts and in the meantime watched hour upon hour of YouTube videos learning how to carve. You really can learn just about anything on YouTube these days!

I downloaded free chainsaw carving plans online and went to work on my first piece about a month after the seed was first planted. By my second project, I had invested in a new electric carving chainsaw, a tiny angle grinder, and hand carving tools. I was starting to feel like Kit with all my tool purchases!

Below are pictures that’ll take you through the evolution of my projects. I have to admit, even I’m impressed with myself at how far I’ve come since my first project. So glad I stopped those first negative thoughts and proved to myself that I CAN.

First carving done! It was supposed to be an owl LOL. I also learned how to use a blow torch at this time.
This was my second carving. I wanted to try an owl again but used a simpler design to help build my confidence.
My third project was an eagle.
This guy now hangs out in my parents’ kitchen. #proudparents
My fourth project was an owl family (with personality).


My cousin really wanted a cartoon owl after I made the first one, so I made her one, too 🙂 This was my fifth project.
No two carvings ever look the same, even if they were intended to!
My sixth carving was supposed to be a fox. That wasn’t working out so I improvised. It’s now a bear!


Kit asked me to try a couple of relief hand carvings for the drawer faces of the nightstands he’s making for the cabin.
I’m still not done with it. These relief carvings take a lot of time and patience!

With each new carving, I’m finding that I really love the challenge, and I especially love creating. Thanks for taking the time to read my blog! Feel free to follow me on Instagram @thebeckymonster




2 thoughts on “14. Learning to Carve

  1. Becky my jaw dropped! You have a God given gift (more than one). Your carvings are beautiful and what makes them even more beautiful is you care about what you are doing. I’m ready to place an order 😎


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