Saturday, January 30, 2010

Today's creation

I threw this piece on Thursday when Malley was demonstrating "a sauce boat" as she called it.  Sort of like a gravy boat but slightly larger perhaps.  I already had a gravy boat but I liked the concept of an oval bowl and later decided to add a cover which I handbuilt from a slab.  It seemed a little small so I decided to add a coil around the edge for extra width and stability.  Then I added a coil to the bottom to make it match better and added some leaf cut outs on the sides and top.  I made a loop handle that I think came out real nice.  Overall I'm really pleased with the piece.  

Thanks Sweetie!

Brings hopes of spring . . . 

Bye Old Friend

The last photographs of my dear old 2002 Forester taken the day before I traded it in.

I bought it with 3,000 miles on it and sold it with 115,000 miles.  I kept my kayak racks to go on the new Forester.

 I miss some of my irreplaceable bumper stickers, like from the boys' old school.

The one I got when I bought Christopher's Segway

One I had made 

Boy did my car need a wash!

Sugarloaf and Sunday River from my years of skiing; Howl if you like City Lights Bookstore from our trip to San Francisco this past summer; Everyone's an Artist given to me by Mark Miller; If you must hate something, HATE HATE made by Rick; and several layers of No On ONE.  

And Welcome new friend - Pearl.  Keeping the same color and model helped alleviate my separation anxieties.  On order are crossbars for the roof racks, a trailer hitch, and mud flaps.  I can't get my remote car starter installed until March 5th.  

Friday, January 29, 2010

The tea set

Karen Barrett asked me to make her a tea set.  At first I was a bit reluctant because I still find it difficult to be deliberate about what I make.  I often will wedge up a peice of clay and start to throw without a definite idea of what I'm going to make.  I might start to make a cylindrical shape and open it out too widely so decide to go with a bowl instead of a vase or a mug, or vice versa.  It's low key and relaxing, and I often end up with unexpected pieces that I really like.  But I decided to give it a try.  I had wanted to make some more closed forms - which is how I make tea pots - rather than throwing a large open bottom and throwing the lid separately.  So here's the process. 

First throw the closed form.  It's a little lumpy but I liked the little flower petal looking handle on the top.

I used my needle tool and cut the lid while it was still on the wheel.  I find I get a more even cut than to wait until it's leather hard and use the exacto knife.  I often wait until after adding the handle and spout to add some impressions but decided to do it first this time.  
So next was the handle and spout.  I tried throwing the spout on the wheel but didn't like the result so ended up hand building it.  It came out a little awkward but I guess it works.  I pulled the handle and added some matching impressions.

And then threw a sugar bowl and creamer.  I loved the shape of the little creamer and decided to leave it without a handle because it just looked so sweet as it was. I added the leaf impressions.  I had meant to put a spoon cut out in the sugar bowl but it was too hard and brittle by the time I remembered so I left it as is. 

I think the set went into the kiln last night for its bisque firing.  Now I'd like to make a couple of small tea cups to go with it.  I've attempted this several times in the last couple of weeks but for some reason they just aren't working.  They're either too big or too small or too wide or something.  I have a few tea cups I threw previously that I can include with the set if all esle fails but I'll give it a few more tries before I resort to that.

Monday, January 18, 2010

What's new

Justin was offered a job at T-Mobile today.  Good starting pay – almost $15 per hour, plus benefits.  He’s been struggling as a cosmetologist for the last few years, and especially since he went out on his own a few months ago.  This will give him a good steady income and he thinks they’ll help pay tuition towards a computer science degree. 

Christopher moved into his dorm at UMF today.  He went up to Alex’s in Farmington last night and Alex helped him move in today.  Good thing he went up last night as we had a surprise snowstorm this morning and it would have been a bitch to drive even the half hour. 

So really all three of my dear sons are doing well.  Jared is still working part time at the public library in Monmouth and is starting his first library science class this week.  He’s got quite a few credits towards the degree already from the English major classes he’d been taking so hopefully he’ll be able to do the library science degree within a couple of years.  It’s a great fit for him, being such an avid reader since he was very little, and he likes the interaction with the public as well.   I think Justin will miss the interaction with his customers but he plans to continue doing hair on the side.  Hopefully he won’t find the call center too stifling. 

Had a good time at The Cup last night with the NitPickers playing.  Good crowd that stayed the whole night.  They’ve got a CD release party next Saturday afternoon at The Higher Grounds and will be taping a segment of 207 next Thursday to be aired the following day.  We’ll ask Steve if he’ll play it on his TVs on Friday during our usual time at The Depot.  This Friday we have the poetry reading at A-One To Go.  I haven’t written anything new for ages though I’ve started lots of pieces.  Maybe I’ll become inspired one day this week.  If not maybe I’ll reread an older piece.  They’re probably not so memorable that anyone would notice, plus who says you can’ read the same ones over again. 

Going for dental surgery tomorrow.  Justin is coming down to spend the night and take me in as Rick and Jared are both working.  So I’ve got just two days of work this week.  I don’t think anything big is happening at the Legislature this week so that shouldn’t be a problem. 

I started working on a tea set for Karen Barrett at pottery.  I’ve thrown and embellished the tea pot but still want to do a couple of cups and possibly a sugar bowl and creamer.  I also made my first candlestick.  We’ll have to wait and see how that works out. 

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Winter Birds

Red breasted woodpecker.

A bluejay enjoying the peanuts Rick
set out for him. 

Saturday, January 2, 2010


Today was Day 2 of doing the Dive from Holosync and 30 minutes of exercising.  That is my goal for 2010 -  to take better care of myself, mentally, emotionally, and physically.  I think the Holosync meditation will help with the mental aspect - ward off Alzheimer's and help with concentration and memory.  It won't be easy to get into the habit of setting aside 60 to 90 minutes a day for self care.  Which 90 minutes?  It certainly won't happen before work in the morning as I can barely get to work on time now.  When I first get home from work at 5:30ish?  That would mean no dinner until 7 - and only then if someone else makes it.  That's probably not going to happen on a consistent basis.  So maybe have dinner and start the Holosync at 7 and be done with the whole routine by 8:30.  It's easy to stick to it while on vacation but it feels like a big commitment of time when you add being away from home for ten hours a day already.  And then on Thursdays when I don't get home till 11:00ish?  hmmmmm . . .

Photos from a snowy January day

We walked into the village today to get the mail.

Christmas balls hanging from trees in the village.

Opening a gift from Jason Christmas morning.  Notice Rick wearing the Carhart hat and Woolrich Mainer shirt I gave him. 

Emmy under the Christmas tree.

Goldfinch on the feeder outside our bedroom window.

This panoramic photo we took of the livingroom "stitched together" by Rick's new camera.  Can't wait to use that feature outside.

Our "compound" - someday perhaps the cottage will become my pottery studio.  But this coming summer priorities are a deck off the front and possibly a garage.