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Friday, December 12, 2014

Follow God - Enjoy Life

 I opened my Etsy store April 2009.  In September 2009 we moved to a brand new community, 2 1/2 hours drive from where we had lived for 33 years.

During the next 3 years I promoted my Etsy shop the best I could.  Learning how Etsy works, finding my way around this new town and working on our new home was a challenge.  God directed us to a new church and I became involved in the art community. New people, missing my old friends, new everything, my time was stretched.

Our new to us home was not landscaped.  Good thing I enjoy gardening and landscaping.  Our basement was an uninsulated apartment, which we gutted to converted into my pottery studio and a family room.  The workshop for my motorcycle mechanic husband was only a shell, no concrete floor, insulation or drywall. Now it is a heated insulated workshop, with a flour, drywall and paint. We built a garage to keep our cars out of the winter elements.  Clearing snow and scraping ice off the windshield is not my favorite activity. These were only a few of the renovations we did to make this house our home.

Five years have come and gone.  There are more projects we want to tackle, but now we can slow down and breathe.  Last year, 2013 I finally  had time to promote my Etsy shop and get more involved in the teams I had joined.

I've been making pottery since 2003.  It takes less time to make my pottery and the quality has much improved. Very little of it goes back in the bucket.

This fall I took stock of where I want to go with my pottery.

Now that I can make my bowls, mug and toothbrush holders quicker I have more time to be creative with my pieces.

When I began to make pottery I made a whimsical pig.  A friend told me this is what God wants me to make, but I was too busy learning how to make good pottery to get creative with it.   

That time is now at hand to take God's direction.  My mind has been designing decorative whimsical pottery.  Excitement is building.  It must come out my head, through my hands into the clay.  The more decorative pottery I make the more my imagination creates and the more fun I have. The joy of the Lord is my strength.

God created us to enjoy life and when we are following Him our life is enjoyable.

Next year will be a new beginning with new pottery for my Etsy site and to sell locally.  Next week I'll fire in the kiln my first load of fun pottery. I can't wait to see where this new direction will take me.

A sneak preview. These are two plates waiting to be bisque fired.
But they are not completed. 

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Busy Weekend With Family

What a busy weekend.

I am thankful for the finances, energy and our car to be able to do what we did this past weekend.

For a week we took care of our daughter's two large dogs. Friday morning we drove north for two hours to take them home and picked up our beef.  We split a cow with our daughter and her family. It was good to spend some time with Liz, Rich and Sarah.  We even got to pick Sarah up at day care.  She was quite puzzled that Grandma came instead of Mom or Dad.

We came home around 9:30.  I put a pot of beans in the slow cooker, had a shower and flopped into bed.  So thankful for cozy bed with a good mattress. 

The alarm buzzed at 6:00 on a Saturday. Ten minutes later we were heading to church, with my pot of beans,  to serve our community breakfast. Other than doing  laundry, my Saturday afternoon was resting until our next trip.

Just after 5 p.m. we were back in the car heading south to the Toronto airport to have dinner with our younger daughter and her family, who just flew home from a holiday in China. They had a 4 hours to kill before their flight home to Fredericton, N.B.  Any time we can spend with them is good, even this short supper at the airport.

Sunday morning we were up early again, not as early as Saturday, and off to church for worship practice.  Practice went well and so did my drumming during the service.  I'm trying not get nervous when I play, works better this way.

Sunday afternoon more time to rest before we headed back to church for 6 p.m.   We ended a video series on marriage. 

These past few days I've been slowing cleaning the house, which is desperately needed after the two dogs, one that sheds lots of fur.  I even managed to get some pottery made, something I haven't done for a month or so. 

Despite this life is slowing down for me.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Angle Tree Reece's Rainbow

Christmas is a the time for giving and many organizations ask us who are more fortunate to give.

I have added a new widget to my blog.  The Reeces's Rainbow Angel Tree.  This organization finds adoptive homes for children with downs syndrome.  They have no family and would like one.  Many of the families wanting to adopt can't afford it.  The Angel Tree helps to raise money for these families allowing many children to have parents and place to call home.
 
I am thankful and privileged to live in a blessed country and to have healthy children and grandchildren.  

If you can help please click on the angle tree to the right. 

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Curtains

While cooking supper I was wondering what I should be thankful for.  Many little and everyday items for sure, but something different.

The sun was setting behind the snow clouds and snow squalls were swirling about the air.   I closed the curtains so I didn't have to look at it.  Curtains also hide the black night from me.

Curtains, that is what I am thankful for today. 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Be Careful What You Think

When I moved to the Muskoka area I began selling my pottery in craft shows.  Sales were good, especially since I hardly sold anything in Sudbury. Then in June of 2013 sales went down and have stayed down, until this past weekend.

At times  I wondered why I was even making and selling pottery.  If  I didn't love it and know God had called me to this it wouldn't be worth it.

This fall I had lots of pottery left over, which meant I can make other things I've not had time to do.  So many ideas float around in my head. Therefore I wasn't discouraged to have left over pottery.

This weekend I decided not to fear accepting Visa and Master Card.  I accept this on my laptop and have had problems with it, just getting to know how the system works. Now I know how it works which has given me confidence to display my credit card sign, instead of hiding it.

I had a bad habit of judging how much money I would make in a weekend.  Of course I can't tell the future and I didn't make what I thought I would.  This summer I decided to stop doing this. 

When doing a show your sales should be 10 times what your pay for the show.  I came close once by making 9 times the fee.  Most times it is 2 to 5 times the fee.

This past weekend, in one of my regular shows, my sales were just over 10 times what my booth fee was. I even sold one of hand painted platters.


The bible says we reap what we sow.  Think positive and your life is positive.  Step by step I am doing this.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Creativity My Way









Opening and unloading my kiln of glazed pottery is like opening Christmas presents on Christmas morning.  I know what I have made but funny things happen in the kiln and I never know how the pottery will turned out.  Some pieces might not turn out the way I would like and occasionally the odd piece is tossed in the garbage. That did happen today.

As soon as I opened my kiln I noticed that one of my frog platters moved too close to a pitcher.  They were fused together like a marriage.  Fortunately I was able to break them apart with minimal damage.  The platter is fine and there is a couple of unglazed spots on the pitcher.  That can be reglazed and fired again, unlike my frog and mouse platter.

Two places on the edges of the frog platter came apart.  As I was cleaning the bottom of the mouse platter I noticed a crack on it. Grabbing both ends I gave it a tug. CRACK!  Now I had two mice platters.  Unfortunately these were two of my better platters.

The rest of the kiln turned out fine.  I will have them for sale at this weekend at the Christmas Craft show in Huntsville and next weekend at the sports complex in Bracebridge.
 
One of my joys is taking raw clay and creating what ever is on my mind.  So thankful God directed me into my calling.  

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Thankful For Small Things

Many years ago God showed me that he even cares about the small things in our lives.  We should never belittle the small stuff and be thankful for all.

Before I had lazer eye surgery I wore soft contact lenses.  Every evening I would put my contacts in a solution of hydrogen peroxide for 10 minutes, then store them in a sailing solution with a disk at the bottom of the container that dissolved the hydrogen peroxide.  You don't want to forget this step and put lenses sitting in hydrogen peroxide in your eye.  You can't get them out fast enough.  I know this from experience.

One evening, thinking I had been to sleep for a several hours, I got up to go to the bathroom.  After I go pee, I fumble in the dark, at the sink, feeling for the glass to get a drink.  I always do this. What goes out must come in.  This one evening, in the dark I was running my hand around the counter hoping it would stumble upon the glass.  I knocked over my contact case.  Now I had to turn on the light and replace the sailing solution that had spilled out of the  container.  My contacts were still sitting in the hydrogen peroxide.  I had forgotten to put them in the sailing solution.  If I noticed this in the morning I would not be able to where them for a while and we were heading on a trip first thing in the morning.

I noticed that I had only been asleep for the few minutes, not the hours as  I  thought. God knew my nightly habit and that I would want to wear my lenses as soon as I got up.  It wasn't something that I needed, but wanted.  God cared about my wants to took care of them.

I have had many times when God has done something small for me and it happened the other day.

I like to garden, but I don't relish doing the fall clean up when it is cold and wet, especially when my hands and gloves are wet and cold.   The other day it was snowing and my calla lilies were still in my  huge pottery pot.  If the pot wasn't emptied the wet soil would freeze and break my pot. 

A friend had recently given Dave a pair of diving dry gloves. They were too small for him and too small for Dave and too big for me. Sounds like Goldi Locks' dilemma.  We were going to give them to our son-in-law, Rich, who teaches scuba diving.  He might know someone whom they would fit.


With the snow falling I put on my winter coat and these gloves and took my calla lilies out of the pot.  My hands stayed dry and warm. All I had to do was run them under the tap to wash them. Sorry Rich I am keeping this gift from a friend, which I am thankful for.