A Day At The Pottery Studio

Yesterday I had my second lesson in pottery.  It was a cloudy gray day and perfect for creating pottery.  I also got to paint the pieces I had created last week.


There is something to be said about creating something new from the earth with nothing but a wheel and your own two hands.  I'm really enjoying this.  It's very therapeutic.  And on a cloudy day with Kate Bush music playing in the background, not much could get better.


The bowl shape on the left will actually become a coffee cup.  The other item was a coffee cup gone awry.  My instructor said it looked like modern art.  I don't know.  I kind of like it.  We'll see what it looks like when painted and glazed.


It's not perfect but it's a start.  I'm always complaining when camping that I don't have a heavy duty mug to use.  This may be it. 


Isn't this beautiful?  I hope to make things this nice in the future.  This plate was created by a Navajo Indian and then painted by a teenage student.  Yesterday a group of teenagers from Canada had come down to study their Navajo ancestry.  Part of this is pottery. 


This is the outdoor brick kiln; one of many at the studio.  There are still some pieces inside left to cool.  Temperatures range from 1900 degrees F (low fire) to 2400 degrees F (high fire).  Yesterday I painted the pieces I created last week.  Even though the paints look nothing like what one would think (what will eventually be blue had a milky color), after these pieces are fired, the minerals in them will turn colors from the intense heat.  Much the same way gemstones do while heated in the earth.


Above are the pieces the Canadian students had made.  They are being fired over charcoal and dried cow manure. (I hope my pieces make it into the brick kiln instead!)

Next week I'll get to see the finished product of my pieces.  I'll be very curious to see what they look like.  And by the way, I'm still trying to find a home for that spitoon.  Any takers?  😉

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In Honor of Dear Old Dad…

On today, this Father's Day, I want to take a moment to honor our Dads. 

To the left is Ruben's Dad, Ted.  They are watching TV together.  It was most likely the show Chavo, which is a Mexican comedy show that they both watched together.  The reruns are still shown today.

I believe this was taken in California.  Ted is one of the wisest men I know.  He is incredibly insightful and caring.  He is also a minister at their family's church.  I joke that I married the wild preacher's son which there is probably more reality to than joke. 😉


Ruben has inherited his great sense of humor.


Here is my Dad, Fred, with my Grandma (his Mom) Estelle.  This was taken at our wedding here in Phoenix 2 years ago.  My Grandma is my last surviving grandparent.

Dad has taught me many things over the years.  If I wanted sympathy, I'd go to my Mother.  If I wanted real answers on problems or situations, I'd go to Dad.  He never steered me in the wrong direction. 

I see pieces of my Grandfathers reflected in Ruben.  He shares their work ethic and their love of family.  It is uncanny sometimes.  I guess we truly are attracted to what we know.







I tried to find a picture of my Dad and I together while growing up and was unsuccessful.  I did find, however, this note that was sent with a folder full of old pictures of myself a few years ago.

My Dad is a great note writer.  When I was 19 years old, I worked for this awful company and I always seem to be in trouble.  Looking back now, I just think it had more to do with the mean people I was working with and not anything I was really doing. 

My Dad wrote another note at that time that had me in tears.  It is tattered and torn in places but I still keep it on me to read when I feel like I need some inspiration to not give up. 

10 years ago Dad and I went to a Father Daughter Dance.  We were the oldest ones there and were surrounded by men who were my age at the time and their 4 to 5 year old daughters.  When it came time to honor our Dad's openly, I whipped out that letter and read it to the crowd.  Dad's eyes were filled with tears.  He had no idea I had kept it that long.


Ruben's Dad is camping today in Sedona with the rest of the family.  We were unfortunately not able to make it.  I'm amazed that both Ruben's parents are in their 70s and still enjoy tent camping.  God love 'em.

My Dad is fishing in a remote area of Canada today.  When we spoke on Friday he was stressing on how he was going to only pack 50 lbs. worth of supplies with him.  This trip requires travel in a sea plane with a pontoon bottom, and there is a weight restriction.  I'm sure he is working it out.

It's good to know that they both are enjoying their Father's Day doing what they enjoy most.  Although they won't be with us today, I hope they are getting in the rest and peace that they both undoubtedly deserve.


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