Thursday, March 6, 2014

Blowing into spring

 Many, many, many folks will talk about the winter of 2014. This has been a winter for the record books with below average temperatures becoming the new normal, bone chilling cold and  a heck of a lot of snow. And, snow in places that don't usually see snow.
We have not had much snow or ice here, but our families have had their share plus enough to last another winter or two.

As we head into March we are use to seeing the Northerners head our way in hopes of finding some warmth and sunshine. This year we don't have much of either to share with them. It's cold. It does not matter where you are, it's cold.

I feel as if we are stuck in a winter limbo that will not let us go. I just heard that winter is planning to hang on through most of March, bringing even more weather precipitation with it. At least one if not two more storms. I hope not, but could be true.


 What does that mean for us?
It is harder to go out and work in the cold.
We are just not as winter savvy as some folks that we know. The studio has heat but not great heat. We can usually get by with our one wall heater. This year that one wall heater is cranked up.
Hot water helps as long as you keep plenty at hand. Layers under and over, wool socks, good shoes all help as well.
It is a good idea to keep as warm as possible to get the job done.
I took advantage of yesterday's heat wave to mask up and stand outside to clean up pots for a bisque firing. It was at least 40 degrees outside. That is better than the single digits that we have been having.
How do you stay warm in this cold?

Years ago we had visiting potters here from Denmark and Helsinki staying with us and working in our studio. It was February and the first day we went out to find our outside water frozen. We thawed it out, heated water, turned up the heat and all went to work.

 Later they complained at how cold our studio and house were. "Cold! But look where you live", I said. "Yes," they said, "but our houses and shops are well insulated and we have heat in our floor."

Heat in the floor.......what I would give for some heat in the floor.

I spent time yesterday moving pots from the last firing over to the shop just in case some of the brave travelers find their way out of the frozen north. We did see a few travelers the last two days making me hope that there are more who are ready for some southern sunshine.
Of course tonight we are under a winter weather advisory, ice.
Ice for Friday.
BUT- Saturday is full of promise.
60 degrees....
I think I am ready.


Michèle Hastings said...

I will agree with your visitors, it does seem the southern homes aren't designed for cold weather... I know the one we live in isn't! I have to plan doing laundry on days that I know the laundry drain isn't frozen.
Jeff said that most of the floors in S.Korea are heated, sounds wonderful to me too!!!

Judy Shreve said...

March is the cruelest month in the South - so fickle -teasing us with 60 degrees one day and 40 degrees the next. It is sleeting at my house as I type.

Funny most of the homes in the south are built to cool us off - not warm us up. We'll be complaining about the heat soon enough.

Love these pot pictures!

Dennis Allen said...

Don't worry. If I see anyone heading south I won't tell them it's cold there.I know what you mean about studios. Mine is pretty well insulated but still if I take out a jug of hot water from the house I end up with only cold water the next day.Go figure.

Tracey Broome said...

There is no way I'm working in my cold studio right now, although, I think I have worked out there in the winter before.... I can remember working in cold community studios until my fingers were blue and my back was screaming, so obsessed with clay, kinda glad that obsession left me:)
I'm ready to move even farther south!

cookingwithgas said...

Good thoughts- we are great for cooling here in the summer....
Judy- that mess is coming here too!
Dennis- get an old coffee pot and plug it in for hot water all day.
TB- enough of the blue .... !

Trish said...

Good afternoon, Meredith from cold Alberta, too. Yes, it is the year to talk about the weather. WE here in Alberta, and I think most of Canada, talk about the weather ALLLL the time. :).. and this winter, will it ever end? The south and west of our province is getting hit with snow again today. As I type it is -14C but it is sunny. That is the one 'saving grace' up here, is that it can be bitterly cold, but the sun shines. My studio is in the basement and it is generally 'cold' down there and the kiln in the garage, so loading and firing at these temps is not going to happen. Anyways, it is all relative, and in varying degrees (haha) we all deal with it. I just returned from Vancouver and it snowed there!! I could not escape, but did see crocus and snowdrops peeking out of the snow, so was happy about that. So, as I wait for the three foot drifts to melt in my backyard, I am looking at gardening, potting, and Spring magazines, and some clay work. :).. Keep sunshiny thoughts.
Cheers, Trish

Laurie said...

Boy, am I looking forward to Saturday and those 60's temps!

Linda Starr said...

I am missing florida weather although Gary said it was pouring cats and dogs yesterday.

Lori Buff said...

When I built my studio I insulated it very well. That helps but it's still only heated with a space heater. I looked at installing a heated floor but could not afford it.
I also fill my bucket with warm water, and dress in layers. Every bit helps.