Friday, August 15, 2014

fall at the end of summer

This weather has once again surprised us here in the south. Instead of dog days we are being gifted with open the windows, sleep with a blanket, pull on a sweater, days.
It is rumored we will be going back to the 90's with high humidity by Saturday, but, meanwhile we have had these perfectly, fabulous cool days that bring to mind the fact that summer does end and fall is coming.

I am heading back to school on Monday, I think I am ready.
I had such big plans for the past two weeks, throwing, tiles, glazing were all on the list.
I did get some throwing done, some tiles made and it is all just waiting to go through the kiln, no glazing......
I am in awe and wonder at the lack of push going on here.
We have pushed ourselves through 32 years of pottery making and somehow I feel a slow down is coming.


These are things to chew on.
How to proceed while being away for most of the week.
Will I become a part timer in this world of clay?
It is just another step in the world of business or life?
Having been a potter for many years I am grateful to have been offered a job doing something that I have enjoyed for so many years. The thoughts of being able to pass on knowledge, tricks and skills is somehow rooted in me. I love the sharing part of anything I do from cooking to clay.

In the time since this blog started there have been many life changes that are pulling me in different directions. I find that I don't have as much time to sit here and contemplate life. I feel that is a good thing. I have these thoughts that flit in that I want to write about and then they are gone. I think that maybe they are less important than the everyday of living, walking, talking, doing.


I won't go away, I just think for now I will not be here as regularly as I have been.
I hope when I am here we are like old friends and can just take up where we left off.
In this crazy ever changing world it is friends and family that will pull you through.

I am off to do things.
Have a great and wonderful day.
See you soon,
M




Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Working the list

 I am working on some orders before I have to go back to school later this month. I have a customer that wanted a lunch size plate to add to his dinnerware set. He wanted something different than the usual plate.
He sent me a picture of a square plate that he liked. I stated looking at how best to make his plate; I watched a few videos about making square plates,  I made a few examples of plates that I thought could work.
I put them in the kiln when Mark was firing Ms. B and, personally, I like the results.
 The one on the right finished at about 8 inches with a bit of a raised area to it along the rim. This is the one that he liked and I have just finished up making 8.
I like the cut rim and I like the "pinched" look to the edges. I like this better than just squaring the edges.

I have such a plate fetish that I am fighting the urge to carry these to the house. I could see them in my kitchen....
 This was another of the vases that we have been working on. This one is really soft. I want to see if I could work on a different green. One that might pop a bit more against the white color.
I do love this blue, it has major possibilities.

Below is a "chicken" that I made one day while I was showing one of my students how to make bowls.
I picked this up and went to toss it back in the mud bucket. I was folding it up, it just turned into a chicken.
Well- a sorta chicken. Maybe a Loch Ness chicken.
I use some of the class glazes for this. I wanted to see how well the glazes worked. One of the things that is often discussed with the students is glaze. I wanted to see thickness and how the glazes applied to the clay bodies.
It is difficult to know how best to talk about glazes with the students until I use them all.
I made sure to try the majority of the most popular ones. With some of them I found that many of them are too thick.
When classes start back I want to look at application and use.


Back at the wheel.
M

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Stories of life.

We've been gone up to Virginia to visit family.
I needed to check in with my mother who just turned 86, see my kids and pinch a few babies.
You know the drill.
It went way to fast.
Then I came home and needed to sleep.
I went to bed the first night home, woke up at 7, looked at Mark and went back to bed only to get up the second round at 9.
I never sleep that much unless I have been out all night or up helping with babies.
this is one of our places that we go grab a beer and just let the water wash our sorrows away.
 
On the school front.
I am going back.
I told them I would stay until they hired the right person for the job. It seems that applications will open again and hopefully this round will give them who they want.
Meanwhile, in 2 weeks I will be back to 3 days a week. They asked if I wanted 5 and I laughed.
Instead I called the person who had taught part time in the past and we worked out the week together. I'll take MTW while she does the Thursday/Friday students.
There will be an overlap with first year and second year students mixed into one class.
I am interested to see how the overflow works.
I am up for the challenge of both.
Then again by December; I could be singing another tune.

The the view as the sun headed down.


 Today was my morning back in the kitchen.
I was making granola, bread and breakfast all at the same time.
Multitasking like a fool.
The granola came out great. I made cooked oatmeal for breakfast and it was good.
But, when I went to check the bread maker after the 2 hours set to make the dough I found this mid-size lump in the machine.
The brain goes,water,sugar, oil, salt, oats, whole wheat flour, bread flour, oats, and....and...darn, yeast.
Yeast, no yeast.
I looked up saving my bread on line and read what folks tried and thought at this point, why not. ( we love whynot... because that is what we are all about.)
I stretched out the bread and sprinkled 1 tsp. of yeast inside. I then folded it and added another tsp., then I folded and tossed in 1 more.
 I then rolled this all up and placed it in a bread bowl with some oil. I then covered the bowl and placed it in the oven for an hour and 45 minutes.
When I came back it was doing something.
I tossed it on the counter, rolled, punched and put it back.
I did it again.
At about 4 I took it out, cut a third off of it and rolled out a pizza.
We brushed it with oil, added cheese, fresh slices of tomatoes, red pepper,olives,salt, pepper, oregano, basil and tossed it in a 500 degree oven for about 8 minutes.
It was fabulous!
A save!
We added some rats and sauce for the side.
Delicious   
Just in case you don't read me on facebook here is the short story on the rats and sauce:
Oma and mommy to 4 year old, do you want to try the eggplant?
4 year old, no, I don't like eggplant.
Mommy, do you want to taste the sauce?
4 year old, no, I don't like sauce.
Opa, I'm eating rat-a- tooolaa.
4 year old, with interest, real rats?
Opa, yes.
4 year old, I want to taste.
Oma and mommy watch as 4 year old jumps with joy and asks for her own rats, on her own plate. I like rat-at-toooolaaa.
But we can't eat the tails.

The end.
M