Tuesday, March 30, 2010

New Stuff

Yesterday morning was my day to work at the pottery studio. Upon opening the door to the studio I realized that the gas kiln had been run and unloaded. I retrieved three pieces of pottery out of this firing. The tomato red flower bowl and the two sugar/honey jars. I was pleased with the firing...lots and lots of reds which seem to be the hardest to achieve.

Also I had this bird tile (and another)that came out of the electric firing. Previously I hand carved this tile and then casted it in plaster so I had a permanent mold. I tried to make these for Christmas but in my haste, they warped and I discarded them. I decided to try again and I really like how this one turned out with the awesome patina to the soft green glaze. I think I may try the owl welcome plaque in this glaze...it seems to highlight the images nicely.


I am off to work all day and hopefully will not too tired to create tonight.

Happy Tuesday all!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Yesterday was a busy day in this household. Todd and Graydon headed out on a bus trip to the Red Bulls Soccer Season Opener in New Jersey. It was a bus trip and they had a lot of fun...too boot, the Bulls won 1-0!!!
While they were on their way to Jersey I headed to the pottery studio to get some work done. After getting settled I unloaded a kiln and reloaded it to bisque some of my work. In this is the owl plaque along with the composting pot. I'll be excited tomorrow to get them out and do some magical glazing on them.
After unloading the kiln, I threw 4 mugs for an order. I went to the sink to wash my hands and noticed these two beauties sitting on the lawn. I found a bag of bread (thank you to the person who left it at the studio), took a piece and headed out with my camera to feed these two. They actually came right up to me and this little guy with the chipped beak took it so gentle out of my hand. His mate was a different story. She was a little rough and as I was feeding him she bit my finger thinking I had bread in my other hand.

I always love seeing these guys and the mallards during this time of the year. They always make a temporary camp on the lawn of the studio to rest and eat some grass. The river is right next to the studio so after their little siesta, they head back down to the river. I have to work tomorrow morning at the studio and I am hoping to see them again...
What did I accomplish??
A bunch of stuff...
4 mugs but one broke :(
sugar and creamer
money pot for an order
bowl for an order
pedestal bowl possibly for an order
-you can see the beginnings of it on the left. The bowl in the bottom left and the pedestal in top left. They both need to be trimmed and put together.

It may not seem like a lot but it is a good afternoon for me. The mugs are a real pain to make and really not one of my favorites. First you have to create the form, wait for it to get leather hard, trim the bottom foot and then fit the handle onto it. All in all it is a long boring process and when you make multiples the time adds up.


This morning I am resting up and then I have a 9.3 mile race right down the road from my house. It is my training route so hopefully I do well. The weather is crappy again and the wind has picked up some. I really am hoping that it will be on my back the entire time.

Wish me luck..

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Upside Down

Life was turned upside down and backwards the last two days thus the reason why I never blogged any creative ideas I had done.
On Thursday I received a phone call from the hubbs stating that his BP was through the roof. He was at work and really didn't know what to do so needless to say he went to the ER where they admitted him for observation. After tons of tests and blood work we was released yesterday afternoon (his Birthday) with heart meds and a follow up appointment for Wednesday. Sooo stressful....
So, today Todd and Graydon are heading off to New Jersey to watch the season opener of the Red Bulls Soccer and I have the whole afternoon to play. I will be heading to the studio with camera in tow, to create, create, and create some more. On the way home I am going to go to my favorite Italian restaurant to get take out of homemade pasta. Tomorrow is race day and I have to load up on some carbs. I promise I will post my creations later tonight...

Thursday, March 25, 2010


Just a quick note...
Today, TG, is a day off...so many things to do with so little time. I have started Physical Therapy on my leg this week and they want to see me at least 3 days a week for 1-1/2 to 2 hours a day. How is that even possible with the amount of stuff I have to do during the day. I mean seriously, as I am there getting massaged (awesome) and then the stretches I do with guided assistance, I am stressing out about all the things I could be accomplishing instead of being there. I would love to be home getting some pottery done but my leg has been a really sore subject, literally! Apparently the ITB (band that runs from your hip to your knee) is really acting up and referring pain to my calf and foot. Although it doesn't bother me when I am running, it hurts like hell after and throughout the day and night. Like one of those nagging toothaches that you want to rip out of your head. LAst night I even missed my pottery class because of the pain. I couldn't even imagine sitting there at a wheel with my leg throbbing. So ice and rest was the remedy last night.
Today I know is Creative Thursday and I promise by the end of the day I will post something that I have created during the day.
But for now, its off to physical therapy for the morning...ugh!!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Monday's Pets

Bits and Pieces of our pets...
Wren checking me out from under an antique child's chair.
and hopping away with enough of the paparazzi photos.
Somebody is extremely not amused in this photo but I love the composition of it. I might have to enlarge and frame it.

Well, this happens to be one of Callie's favorite spots at the moment. Behind this closed door is little Wren. Somebody really, really wants to get in there to see her.

How pathetic!!!
And Louie!!!
The Panda Bear Hammy-ster.
He's a bit of a flit so taking his photo is hard, although Graydon got him to hold still for ummm...a second.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Spring is in the air...

You know when it's Spring when...
you are outside and you hear the calls of the geese flying overhead. Snow geese heading North yesterday and it was a welcoming site!
Snowdrops are the first flowers always up at the site of Spring. They even come out through the snow...but in this case, green grass with no snow on the ground.
Crocus...bees flooding the open blooms for the fresh pollen. I have thought about having a bee hive but with all the bears in the neighborhood, I think it wouldn't be such a good idea!
Little Wren had her first trip outside yesterday and I think she really liked it. There was no stomping of the feet in protest and with her cute little harness on, she got to explore a little. But she wasn't too far from us...she kept hopping back to us and hiding behind our legs looking for security.

The look on her face in this photo is sooo funny. The sun was bugging her eyes and I think she was a little miffed about it.
What a cute little bunny girl...

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I Challenge You!!

I had an idea the other day and called my best bud Michelle of Metals-n-Gems and dared her to a challenge. She accepted with a little hesitation in her voice but we both really need this challenge right now.
Since Christmas I have been a little sluggish in the creativity department. I have had tons and tons of wonderful ideas but I have been overwhelmed with work, home life and running and have not exactly put them to good use. I know I have to get some inventory up because there are a couple of shows coming up in the near future that I am doing.
So what is the challenge you might ask???
To be creative and blog post on Thursdays our accomplishments from the week. This is not only open for us but for you too. If you have anything creative you have made whether it be sewing, clay, jewelery, baking, cooking or what not, feel free to jump on board. Just let me know so I can blog about it so other people can see your talents.
This week, let me present you with...
A hand-carved welcome tile. It looks a little rough right now and I am waiting for it to set up so I can do some more detail carving but my intention with this piece is to be able to personalize the space below welcome. I can add names (if not too long) dates or even some other type of art work. Watch for a later post featuring this welcome plaque.
Another favorite of mine to throw is large platters. This happens to be 15" in diameter and I plan on putting some really great handles on this. It needs the handles because it is rather too large to handle with ease. It is going to make a great serving bowl or focal point for your dining room table. I have a some incredible rich glazes I plan on using on it.

This next piece may look like a cookie jar to you but it is going to be a compost pot. Just in time for the spring and all the gardening you have to do...just set this baby on your counter top and fill it with banana peels, coffee grounds, egg shells and more. It will force you to recycle and build a perfect compost bin outside. Here is a couple of ideas on composting.
  1. Start off with some sort of area that you are willing to make the trek to. Good compost shouldn't smell so it can be by your house.
  2. You can pick up a black compost bin at any Cooperative Extension for little money or just make your own. You can use the mounding method as I do because it is behind the barn or get some wire mesh from you hardware store with 4 posts. Put the 4 posts in the ground in a square formation. Use the wire and attach to the posts leaving the front open. This wire promotes air flow into the compost.
  3. Add a layer of grass clippings, leaves, grass clippings, leaves, kitchen sNumbered Listcraps (please no meat), and then keep at it alternating everything.
  4. You might want to keep some sort of pitch fork nearby so you can turn it every once in a while.
  5. And before long you will have...


Use on your flowers or veggies...they will love it!

Remember, recycle and reuse is the rage!!!

Jump on the wagon!

I hope you enjoyed the creative photos above. Please check out my friends site. Hopefully she will post something before nights end and you can view her amazing work!! Not only does she make jewelry, she also in an amazing cook, sewer, builder and more...

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Celebrate Life 1/2 Marathon

Driving an hour and a half to the race I wasn't too sure what to expect. It was slightly raining in spots and the wind was pretty strong. I started to get a little anxious thinking that I was completely off my rocker to sign up for a 1/2 marathon in MARCH. I kept thinking that why couldn't the weather be like the weekend before, warm and in the high 40's low 50's....but after all it is March in Upstate New York and the weather is crazy. We arrived at the race and I was surprised by the amount of snow that they still have. It is in Sullivan County and they really got hit hard by the snow fall a could of weeks ago, on top of that it was wet and muddy also...oh goodie!
I signed in, got my bib and this windbreaker that Graydon is wearing and then headed out into the lodge to start stretching. We had a good hour before the race started, just enough to get the nerves going. At this point I really starting to doubt my training that I did. I did this also at the full marathon and started to drive myself a little nuts. How on earth could I get through this 1/2 in this weather??? Also, in my nervousness I lost my bib. I ripped my truck apart looking for it, the nap sacks were turned inside out and then Todd and Graydon went back into the lodge to find it laying on the floor. TG!!
After all that hoopla, Graydon and Todd walked me to the starting line where I decided to hang out in the back of the pack. The front lines are usually all the serious runners who do incredible times and I didn't want to get stuck starting out too fast and losing my breathing.

The National Anthem was sung and we were on our way....all smiles not knowing what is to come.
OK, not so bad starting off downhill but I know there is one hell of a hill coming. At least 3/4 of a mile and steep...right in the very beginning. Oh well, I thought, get it over with and then they said it was beautiful rolling hills and it would be fun.

This is the very beginning of the steep 3/4 mile long hill. At this point I was trying to get my breathing under control because I knew I would have to use a lot of energy to get up the hill. It was nice to see Todd and Graydon cheering me on. They gave me the motivation to get my rear up that hill.

Mile 3...feeling pretty good. Here I am thinking...OK, hills I hope you aren't too bad. 10 more miles of huge hills would totally stink! Graydon and Todd followed me to this point and yelled out that they would see me at mile 4. Also, notice the snow...holy moly. And on top of the cold, it was sprinkling...not too bad but enough to wet your face and dampen your hair. I am so glad I bought this windbreaker the night before. Everyone kept telling me to use a garbage bag but come on...I think I can buy a windbreaker. There even was a girl running the race with a black garbage bag on and a shower cap. Classy!
OK...so mile 4 came and I quickly stopped to get a water break and talk to Todd and Graydon. He said that he would meet up with me at mile 8 and asked if I would be OK for 4 miles. Sure, of course I said. Well, I went on my way and realized that I actually had to run around Wolf Lake. A LAKE!! I looked at the very beginning of the lake and saw how large it was, holy hell!! It was all rolling hills, some really steep and short, others long and a low grade. The houses on that lake were amazing. Huge mansions and that kept the scenery interesting. Just when I thought to myself hey, I really like this one another one would be around the bend and it would be more grand. I would love to head back there in the summer time to see them.
Up a hill to mile 8 and there was Todd and Graydon smiling and cheering on. I headed down to see them, grabbed some gummy bears and kisses and back up the hill I went.
After I saw them at mile 8, I then saw them at mile 11 and they went on their way to the finish line. I knew my time was crappy but between the rain and the strong wind and hills, what else could I do. I had a little talk to myself and said "FINISH STRONG, YOU CAN DO THIS" and at that point it was mile 12...sleet and hail decided to fall with the wind in toe and it hurt so bad on your face. I ran with a girl at this point who during the whole race we played cat and mouse. We chatted, swore and cheered each other on. I always get a strong kick in the end and sprinted as fast as my legs would go to the finish line.

I hung out at the finish line for a little bit and then headed into the lodge where they had beer and food by Outback Restaurant. The line for the food was ridiculously long so I grabbed a beer and headed outside into a snow bank. This idea I got from Ashley and it was heaven! Even though it was so cold outside, the snow felt great on my tired legs and especially my butt. It was great to enjoy that beer after the long run!!! It tasted soooo good!!
We headed out after that and went to Todd's aunt and uncle who live nearby. After a shower, we had an incredible Irish dinner of corned beef and cabbage, potatoes and carrots. Yumm...the perfect salty dinner after that long race.
Great conversation and food...what more could I have?
Ask me again if I would do this race, I think I would have to ponder this.
I was a nice race, great wind breaker and food but no medal. It sounds petty of me to wish I had a medal but after running this whole half of a marathon, I would really like to have that medal.
But I ran it and I'm glad!
Now on to another race in two weeks...this time right down the road from my house and YAY, it is my training route! Hopefully it will be nice weather!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Monday's Pets

Here is a typical photo of Holly. A little somber, a little shy and a whole lot of cute.
And what's not cute about this. Callie checking out the squirrels and birds flooding the feeder. I love how she uses her elbows to prop herself up.

And a very sleepy Stitchie. He loves to sleep on top of the cable box....ooooohhh, nice and warm!

Another shot of Callie watching the birds along with Holly. A very rare moment as Holly gets snippy but she decided to play nice today.
Heeeelllllloooooo Wren!
She was listening very intently to the washing machine and did not like it at all. She stood with her back to me and kept thumping her foot. I have never experienced a bunny doing that before and it was so loud. They have such strong back legs and the power is amazing.
On another note...the 1/2 Marathon in Rock Hill, New York is completed.
It was quite the run and I will fill you in on it later. Right now I am exhausted and plan on heading to bed soon to make up for the running I completed this weekend!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Double Runs...

So this weekend is the case of the double runs. I guess I didn't realize that the St. Patrick's run was this Saturday and the 1/2 marathon is on Sunday.
Normally I would never do this but I think I have prepared myself pretty good for both runs. This morning started off pretty well. It was suppose to be a wash out with all the rain that we were suppose to be getting but it held off nicely for us. It did start sprinkling about 1/2 was through the race but it was the type of rain that I didn't mind at all. It was a little refreshing because I think I over dressed and I was getting pretty darn warm by that time. I finished about 1/2 way back in the pack. The official results will most likely be posted either later tonight or tomorrow so I will know more then of how I placed.
It was fun and I got to see a lot of friends.
And speaking of friends here are Ashley and Stephen from the (never home) maker blog. If you haven't checked out their blog yet you really need to. The have incredible recipes, great photographs and insite on the whole running world. They both are incredible runners and I am in awe of their speediness. Congratulations to them on their great run!!

And here is my friend Jim...it was his first race and he did AWESOME as well. I'm very proud of him and I am looking forward to many more races with him.

So tomorrow is a 1/2 Marathon in Rock Hill, New York. It is about an hour and a half from home which is not too bad of a drive. Very scenic and to boot Todd's aunt and uncle live down that way and have invited us to a corn beef and cabbage dinner after the race. Nice and salty and believe me I will be thinking about it the whole entire race.
I think I have figured something out during todays race. I really don't get my breathing down until about a mile and a half into the run and then by 4 miles I really start feeling good. I believe that I am meant to do the longer distance runs. I enjoy them much more than these quick little ones but that is not to say that I am stopping the 5K's and 4 milers. I just think I may be a little more selective of doing the shorter runs and concentrate on the longer ones.
So on that note...
rest is what I need
I will post later about the 1/2

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

True Love

Have you ever loved something so much that you don't know what you would do without it? That is how I feel about...
Oh my love of peanut butter has gone on for years and years and will continue for years to come. As a kid who doesn't love peanut butter and jelly sandwiches but as an adult we have had it instilled in us that although it is healthy, it packs A LOT of calories and fat. As a runner, I have decided that I not only run for my health and sanity, I run so I can eat as much peanut butter as I want. When you run you burn about 100 calories per mile so I do not feel guilty at all coming home and eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. But not only do I eat it in sandwich form, I eat it by the spoonful, I eat it on Cocos (rice cakes), I eat it on bananas and apples, and I just plain eat it!
Just to show you a little incite on my daily consumption, here is my breakfast this morning. Whole grain toast with peanut butter slathered all over it along with 3/4 of a banana. The juice is my favorite....pomegranate, cranberry and a splash of orange juice. Although most mornings I have a shake with berries, banana, juice, yogurt and some special powder, I have run out of my berries and need to stop at the store to get more. So for the last couple of days I have eaten this...
Oh, don't forget the the little piece of banana that didn't fit on the piece of toast...it also gets a dollop of peanut butter...
Here is my favorite brand of peanut butter....Wegmans! I use to be a Peter Pan girl but after the scare I switched reluctantly to Wegmans and now nothing else compairs. I got this jar on Saturday and just to show you, look how much is gone. Sure, Graydon is just like his Mama and eats it by the spoonful too but the majority of this missing peanut butter was consumed by moi!!
And I am proud of it!!!
So, on other news. I have been so busy with working and running (I have two races this weekend...I will blog later about it), I haven't really done too much of my fav...pottery. But yesterday before I left for work I put together this slab piece. I picked the form up at a local store and thought it was pretty darn neat. It would make a great centerpiece on a table filled with pine cones and even use it as an awesome serving platter. It is quite large, well over a foot in length, but after all the firings it will shrink down a bit. My plan it to glaze this one in my trusty Tomato Red with my little trees in the middle done in white. BUT, I have other plans for some more. Maybe with some words stamped into it, characters or such...
Any ideas??? Leave me a comment...
So now onto another sunny, beautiful day in Upstate New York.
Have a good one!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Monday's Pets

A whole week slipped by without one post...I don't really know how it happens but the busy-ness of life just gets in the way. We had the typical week of, work, school, sports, running, pottery and other daily routines and here it is...another week starting.
But what a beautiful start to the week I might add!!! Sun, Sun and more Sun!! And to boot...in the high 40's! What a treat!!! I finished a wedding shower cake and delivered it at 10:00am and unfortunately forgot to take a pic of it. Oh well...hopefully the bride got a pic for me.
After delivering the cake Todd dropped me off at my usual starting point of running and I headed out, with wayyyyy too much clothing on. Within the first mile the fleece coat came off and then the next 1/2 mile the fleece headband came off too. No other clothes were stripped off during the run but it was a pleasant 10 mile run. The birds were singing, the sun was shining and the roads were clear. What more could a girl ask for.
After getting home, showering and resting for a bit, I headed back outside with the family to enjoy the day. We let the goats out of the barn and boy o boy they weren't too sure about the snow. They really do not like it but couldn't resist the little bit of grass showing.
Here is Racer and his twin Lily enjoying a snack...their teeth are so human like on the bottom aren't they??
Lily and Flower with a very shedding Racer kicked up their heals and stayed close to each other. Still not too sure about the white stuff... And here is my good old girl Bebe!!
She just cracks me up...this is her normal expression on her face. It looks to be amused and comical all together...She is the Mom to Flower and Grandmother to Racer and Lily. The Matriarch of the group she tends to hang back and observe but is never too far away from her kids!

Did I mention she loves to be hugged...

And hugged some more....

As I walked to the house to talk to Todd, he said to me "Hey goat whisperer, you have a following" and as I turned, this is what I saw...they all were following me.

Until somebody scared them back to the barn. She really doesn't care for them too much but really desperately wanted to herd them back to the barn.
So now on to Monday and the sun is shining....Spring???
I sure hope so!