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He has also gone to a few classes, and in 2003, attended a week-long bowl-making class. He created a bowl using only an adze tool, which dates back to the Stone Age and is still used today to smooth and shape wood in hand woodworking.

After making his creations, he spends hours hand rubbing oil and wax on them so he can see and feel the wood.

“I don’t like a varnished finish, because it looks like plastic or a piece of glass on it,” Joe said. “When I’m done waxing and oiling a piece, I like it to feel smooth like a baby’s butt.”

While living in Europe, Zak still traveled away from home for weeks at a time leaving his family and hobby. Sandy taught college math courses in Catholic schools and the kids went to school so they weren’t able to go along.

When they were leaving Brussels for their permanent move back to the U.S., Zak wanted his wife to see all the places he worked.