Thursday, July 24, 2014
Had a busy week planned but a few things got postponed, which gave me a day I desperately wanted to spend at the studio. I have several things people have requested me to make, and I have been eager to get them made.
Hubby seems to think I shouldn't be selling things, but that I should donate them to charity or give them to my friends. I don't know what to think except that I have enjoyed having people tell me they really like my stuff, enough to spend money on it! It is very validating (and that is something I need) though I know I should enjoy making pottery for the sake of enjoyment, not concerning myself with what other people think.
Last night is when he mentioned this, after a friend saw on Facebook the picture I have also posted up above. She said she really wants to buy something of mine and wanted to see more pictures. I emailed them to her (she'd also asked about pricing)
The bowl above is a salad bowl someone requested. She'd bought a few other things a few weeks ago, and wanted this to match as much as I could match it in basic coloring and surface design. You may remember the vase I've posted a couple of photos of. That is the inspiration for this bowl. It is 12 inches across the top and 4 1/2 inches deep. I sent pictures and my friend said it's great.
I'm in a quandry. My hubby says don't sell. I am continuing to plan to do so. I guess I need to explain to him how good it makes me feel to sell, and ask him exactly why I shouldn't. I remember before he mentioned something to me about selling pieces puts too much pressure on me. (We are all about keeping my life as stress free as is possible, to aid in my mental health stability. Why add another unnecessary stressor?) I do like to have a little spending money that I don't feel like I have to report to him what I spend it on. Or I don't have to feel I'm messing up his budget when I buy clay or want to sign up for the next class. Maybe his ego is hurt that I'm finding a way to give myself a little security...that I don't trust him to provide financial security. It's not like I'm making a ton of money off of this stuff! It's just a little pocket money, for Pete's sake!
Thursday, June 26, 2014
You all who read my friend feed statuses have read that I have begun to sell my pottery! I am, to say the least surprised and also very humbled that people like my art and want to own it enough that they will pay money for it, (and I donít believe Iím under pricing it) some of it to give as gifts!
I have earned enough to pay for 120 pounds of new clay! Or almost enough to pay for a 10 week session of class at the studio! With that amount of clay I can make a lot of pottery, as you can imagine! (It takes 1 1/2 pounds to make a tumbler or mug)
Ok, now for some pictures. Iím going to repost before pic of a vase and a post firing one. There has been 2 salt/soda firings, and one gas kiln firing. I had nothing turn out acceptable to me in the gas kiln. So Iím not even going to show any pics of those. I think Iíll stick to salt and electric like I learned in my beginners class, as Iíve found people like that stuff too. (I prefer the brighter colors of electric, but the organic feel to the salt fired stuff)
Salt kiln pics:
old one of glazed vase: (posted in a previous blog)
finished one of vase, this one has sold!
Pitcher that sold. The woman who bought the vase and this pitcher asked me to be a fruit bowl to match these two. She said make sure I use the same inner glaze. Funny but when I first saw how this glaze turned out I didn't care for it but everyone likes it!
This is a picture of the whole first salt batch, the bowl in front of the vase sold too!
one in the works, can't wait to finish it
second salt firing I used a different clay, and the person controlling the firing of the kiln purposely lightened stuff up a little. This was all my product:
A couple of the pieces from that firing sold, too.
Now here's something totally different and I've sold a couple of these, too. I'll make more of these, they are great gifts at $15. They are about the size of a large palm of a hand.
Something I'm working on, a bread baking bowl
My experiment that I am excited to see the results
Finally, I will show you a picture my friend sent me of the pitcher she bought from me after she put flowers in it.
Monday, June 02, 2014
I'm discovering something about my spiritual strength. Just want to share.
I am like a palm tree. Great roots and strong trunk. Able to withstand harsh storms in life as the palm in a hurricane or typhoon. My fronds whip around in the storm, and I hold on to most of them. My Father in heaven has given me faith; a deep abiding faith that during and after a storm holds tight to the One who gives me strength. Through storms and trade winds, (the many worries that toss my mind about, and the harsher storms such as my bipolar mind, my battles with weight, and relationship issues)I may falter and worry, but always go back to knowing in my heart of hearts that I am cared about and can find peace in the midst of life. I am strong and resilient as the palm. I bask in the Son (sun) and hope to give others inspiration to stand firm and hold on to the faith in their heart.
Saturday, May 31, 2014
Spent 4 days with my parents. They eat terribly and I don't think I had much of a good impact on them though I ate very healthfully. They are 81 and don't feel any urgency to extend their lives by living with their heath in mind. Though they complain about aches and pains, they don't realize that the quality of life and aches, pains and energy levels may at least improve if they paid attention to what they put in their bodies. There are many foods that cause inflammation and they probably have sensitivities to a couple of them, but are unaware that they eat them. My dad has cancer of the blood and I imagine he just wants to enjoy what he likes to eat, why put effort into forcing himself to eliminate foods.
We get set in our ways. At 55 for the first time I'm actually taking notice of how foods make me feel. Whether they make me ache or sap my energy. Some make me more emotional including frustration and anger. I now am caring what I put into my body. This has developed after seeing my adult children all take care to eat well. My youngest son (22) and I have a wonderful relationship and he is having the most impact on me and also my hubby.
My husband is a very picky eater who never consumed veggies. He has been listening to health podcasts and is changing his diet bit by bit! He is eating sweet potatoes, will eat cucumber tomato salad(!) and even ate steamed broccoli, carrots (his much despised food) and squash. He said he only remembers canned mushy yucky tasting carrots from his childhood. The ones we had at the steakhouse were sweet and firm. This is so cool! He's trying new things. He's found he feels so much better without gluten and dairy. We're even eating out much less often! That's a big deal!
So his changes have inspired me...if he is willing to make changes after an adamant hate for veggies and love for milk and cookies, I am challenged and now listening to my body and making great strides to take care of myself... for me! I had made many changes before, but always thought that sugar didn't effect me much, and it wouldn't be that big of a difference to get rid of it. (Surprise...I tried it to see if I could see a difference and...um...well, it did!) My goal isn't even totally focused on weight loss, though I'm hopeful that cutting out the sugar and refined carbs will impact my weight.
We all can work at eliminating one thing at a time to reach a point that we feel good. I'm happier and calmer, feel more confident and walk taller.
I am praying for help to make these changes, and knowing this is something God would want for me, (to feel good and happy,) He is kind and is hearing my prayer. Answers are coming bit by bit as I am willing to put forth an effort.
Wednesday, May 21, 2014
Right now Iím gearing up for a quick visit in Wisconsin with my parents, brothers and beloved Aunt and Uncle.
Iíve taken some time to eliminate a few foods (seven in fact) from my diet. Ever hear of the Virgin Diet? Iím not on it, but just testing out elimination tactics to determine if certain foods may be responsible for things I have taken as normal things. (morning headaches occasionally, belly aches, banging pulse, bloating. I have become so used to these things, and so stubborn to imagine that I should ever have to give up my beloved comfort food group SUGAR. I also am working hard at keeping a great balance of my carb, fat, protein levels. I know without a doubt that lower carbs (not NO carbs) helps me lose weight. I am getting my carbs from fruit, veggies and minimal grains. In challenging myself to keep my carbs down, I see I canít afford to put sugar laden foods in my mouth.
Last night, after a couple of weeks without sugar, I was at our first salt kiln firing. It was a social event. The kiln is outdoors and it was a beautiful evening. The photographer present had brought a bakery box of salted caramel brownies to celebrate the event. (Salt kiln/ Salted caramel connection which i thought was clever) We were having unexpected issues with a blower ceasing to burn properly. The 12 of my pieces were in jeopardy of getting messed up. I responded with a o heck, why not have a piece. So I had one. A half hour later a friend tried one and said, there are still a lot leftÖgo ahead and have another! Just that first taste had been enough to prime the pump, so I had another. In retrospect they werenít all that good. To top it off, I woke up with a rip-roaring headache. Glad to have the knowledge that my morning headaches have an explanation, though Iíll have to check to see if chocolate is suspect at all. I had also had quite a bit of cocoa in some no sugar Almond butter/cocoa balls i made, only sweetened with a tiny bit of Monk Fruit sweetener. Iíd eaten several in the mid-day. More than usual. I usually have one or two and never had a reaction. I also on my weeks of feeling really well had been having a tablespoon of cocoa in my morning coffee. No headaches from that. Maybe larger amounts of cocoa bothers me. Yet to be tested outÖitís all trial and error.
The good news is, Iím finally at a point in my life, taking cues from all my children who donít consume sugar, That I am mindful of what effect foods have on my body. Getting over that stubbornness that kept me from entertaining the thought that sugar was all that evil. Iíll be really tested on my trip to my folksí, but it is 5 days and I have already a plan to stop at the store to get my healthy options before arriving at their house. Already told my dad Iím not doing sugar so he knows I wonít do my usual baking. I only have to make sure mom doesnít bake to win my love and attention like she did last time.
Photos of salt kiln getting loaded. My large vase is in the bottom right.
This shows the heat in the kiln. It's at 2000degrees F. here
Iím still spending lots of time on my pottery. Enjoying the present, not worried about whether Iíll be in the next class. My zeal is speaking for itself, and I am confident that we will find a way for me to continue working through the summer.
Photo of Abi and me
Abi, my 9-year-old grandchild and I ran and walked the 5K last Saturday at App State, in Asheville, NC. All the girls in this Girls on the Run club got a tag with the # 1. And all get medals at the finish line. It is non-competitive and not timed. It is all to help the girls learn that exercise is fun. Great program.
Mountain schools have hilly walking trails! This was a challenging walk/run. I do not run. I ONLY run when Iím with grandkids. I donít want to let them think of me as an old woman. I ran at first, the track was nice and cushy. Then we went uphill off the track and on to the path we had to follow three times around. Uphill, I never ran, down hilll, many times I ran. On the last lap Iíd noticed a twinge in my back and didnít want to push my luck since my back is the thing that keeps me from running, so I told Abi that since this is all about taking care of our bodies, the thing I needed to do now was take care of my back and only walk. No more running. She was protective of me from then on. Once I said lets run this one, and she said no, lets not, you need to take care of your back. I made an exception to run through the finish line. After all the track is cushy.
Hubby and my daughter and Abiís brother sat on the side of the trail at the bottom of one of the hills. When they saw me running, after lap one and two, they were really surprised that I was able to still have moments of running. Iím pretty proud of myself and had no resulting back pain since the event. We were at the tail end of the pack. It was at least 1500 girls and adult running buddies. Quite an event! Two water stations, and we got water each time. The kids loved throwing down their cups.
This was the first 5K I participated in with a real group. Abi and I are excited we had this time together!
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