I’m sure you’ve had one of those weeks – that time when it seems like everything is breaking down. My kiln malfunctioned this week. It’s been a faithful part of my studio for the last several years. I’ve taken it for granted that pressing a couple of programming buttons will yield the end results I plan and hope for. I loaded up shelves of glazed pots a few days ago, started the kiln, only to see a flashing "Err 1" message the following day. Bummer.
After some exploration, phone calls to a local ‘kiln doctor’, instruction manual reading and testing, – I’ve determined which part has broken and affected the successful operation of the kiln- firing process. It’s a part called the thermocouple and gauges the correct temperature of the kiln as it fires up to almost 2000 degrees.
I am capable of fixing the problem. Deep down I know this. I get nervous at first – trying to tackle a job I’ve never done before. I don’t want to screw it up. So I gather as much information as I can and double check the necessary tools and dive in. Usually, there is a positive outcome. If there isn’t, I know who to call.
All of this relates to what is going on in my own life this week. Today I turn 60 years old. Words that come to mind: Amazing; What?; Time Flies; Gratitude; Breaking Down; Freedom; Happiness. Like my kiln (you know I had to go there!), with aging, I notice some of my body parts have begun to decline. This is natural. In my mind, I still feel young so sometimes I have to adjust the desired outcome to go around whatever isn’t quite working the way it used to. It may cause some trepidation at first, but as I move forward I learn to work around those faults and keep going.
I don’t exactly feel old. 60 years has passed in a whoosh. The good news of the week has been plentiful as well.
I’m thrilled that my clay art is now available at The Cooley Gallery in Leesburg, Virigina. Chris Cooley is a potter and former NFL football player who owns this gallery/studio. The historic town is filled with shops, galleries and restaurants. Let me know if you visit, I think you'll have a great time!
I demonstrated making my yarn bowls at the "Urbn Market" this past Friday. I really enjoy showing how I create my art and engaging with attendees. I always ask people (especially the kids) to show me the bottoms of their shoes. If there is any kind of pattern there, I use a piece of clay to make a new stamp. Go look at the soles of your shoes in your closet. You’ll be amazed at some of the patterns you’ll find there!
In the studio, I thought of a new design for a recipe box. I’ve made one before but wanted to simplify the design. I’m happy with the results. The little heart on the front will hold a select recipe card when it is in use.
So I have a favor to ask. I love collecting recipes. Could you send me one of your favorites to share? My goal is to receive at least 60 new ones to add to my kitchen. You could just snap a photo if that makes it easy, or type it out in an email (firstname.lastname@example.org). Or even send me a link to a tried and true you like to make. Click here to begin. Thank you!