Sunday, December 30, 2012

Chickens and Pots

I started this blog as a blog about my chickens.  We moved in May and left the chickens behind.  It was a sad thing; I miss my ladies every day.  I traded my chickens for a studio. The biggest selling point for our new home was an amazing studio.  I went from an 8x8 foot shoebox to a 30x20 foot work room. 

In the beginning of October I was asked to sell my pottery in a boutique.  I was terrified.  Should I??  I didn’t feel ready.  It was a dream I have had for years, but was the timing right?  I stewed, I pondered, I stressed, I agonized.  I was still turning the idea over in my mind when I went to visit Cristy.  I sat by a lady on the plane who has become my best customer.  She was so complimentive.  She loved bowls with carvings (I thought I was alone), she loved bright colored bowls, she loved leaves, and poka dots, and pots with faces.  She loved braided handles and platters with carvings.  Was it a sign?  Was she just being nice?  I didn’t know.  I was skeptical.

When I returned home she called me and made a sizable order.  I was humbled I was excited.  She wanted me to teach her 18-year-old son who serves as a TA in the ceramic classes at Davis High.  I wondered if I had anything new to teach him.  It has since become a wonderful experience. 
Was I was ready to walk naked upon the art stage?  I had a dream the week before the show that I was swimming in the ocean with Toby and Jered.  They had an inflatable inner tube.  I was treading water.  They yelled at me to look backwards and there loomed a 90-foot wave, three feet from where I was treading water.  They were safe, I knew that, but I was in deep trouble.  I knew I had to hold my breath until the wave passed.  It was terrifying.  The dream stayed with me for weeks.

I agreed to do my first sell with only five weeks to spare.  I explained to Toby what this would mean he willingly agreed to support me.  My family ate a lot of Little Caesar Pizza.  I worked harder than I ever had in my life.  I threw, trimmed, glazed, and wedged.  I worked ceaselessly every chance I got and late into the night most nights. 
The day of the show came.  My wonderful family came and supported me.  It was more than I could have dreamed.  Although traffic was light, I still sold a lot of bowls.  When the day was done, I was happy and yet a little sad, I couldn’t place my feelings.  Immediately I came home and started working on a second show 3 weeks hence with Thanksgiving in the middle.  Again, I had great success and sold every bowl I brought (except some bright, happy bowls which will have to wait for spring) every platter, tortilla warmer, and pot.  Toby asked me how it went and again I was elated and a little sad.  WHY?!?  It didn’t make sense.  It took me awhile - 12 months of my pottery life was gone.  My bowls are my friends, they have replaced my ladies.  They are mostly one-of-a-kind.  I am not a fast potter.  I labor and stew over each bowl and piece.  They are a little part of me.  I breathed life into clay and make it functional.  I loved to go down to my studio and just look around.  Now, there are only empty shelves waiting to be filled.  I received many orders from the second show and spent all of December making more platters and bowls.  I told Toby I was going to write a book called, “The Inconvenient Dream”. 

 I’m looking ahead to 2013.  I don’t know where pottery will take me.  Will I do more shows?  Will I just make things for people I love and special orders?  I don’t know.  I haven’t decided.  I learned a lot this fall.  It was an experience I will never forget.  I have miles to go to before I become the potter I would like to be but thank you for all your support these past couple of months.  It has been an amazing ride!

50?!?!? WHAT THE HECK?!? When did that happen?

I’ll admit i had a hard time turning 50.  Birthdays?  What are those?  Just a time to get together and a good excuse to eat cake without guilt.  I didn’t mind turning 20, 30, 40 felt like a holiday, a freedom from 30’s (those were hard years) but 50?!?  Seriously, that is a big number and what does it even mean?  Am I too old for skinny pants?  Am I too old to go to the trampoline park with my kids (who aren’t really kids anymore).  Am I old enough that I can wear bling without my son telling me I should move to Tooele?  At what age can wear what we want?  Tierra’s and cupcake dresses?  Hmm, I think that ship sailed and I wasn’t on board, unfortunately.
But 50, that was a hard pill to swallow.  I don’t feel any different than I did 20 years ago.  In fact, I feel better.  I have more stamina, more energy, and more passion for life.  I  don’t want to get old.  That’s all.  I love life, I want to drink from it deeply forever, I don’t want to get senile (more than I already am).  I want to travel and put in 18 hour days and never slow down.  I want to have energy for my grandkids; I just don’t want to be some old lady that they can’t relate to.  I feel bad for Mitch.  When Mariah and Taylor were teenagers we were in our 30’s and now Mitch has an old mom.  I never saw it coming.  No one warned me that I would go to bed in my 30’s and wake up 50.  That’s how it feels.  I don’t recognize the person in the mirror, that can’t possible be me; I am young.  I feel young.  It is weird.
Luke sitting on my stomach

In spite of all my misgivings, I had a terrific birth-day or birth-week. I flew to DC and spent 30 perfect hours with my sister, Cristy (we saw the ballet Dracula), I spend my birthday at the zoo with Toby, Luke, Mariah, Rob and crew, Taylor threw me amazing party, Toby got me a slab-roller for pottery, friends, and family were amazing.  I felt loved and supported and I did eat cake, lots of delicious cake (thanks Margaret).  I’ll take that fuel and more forward for hopefully 50 more!  Thank you wonderful people, I love you all!!

Technology Overload

I am feeling slightly technologically overloaded these days.  Taylor mentioned that he was going to write a book about all the things i don't know about technology.  While that may be true please let it be stated here, for time and all eternity, that i did unlock my own Apple phone this month.  I may not have a lot to brag about, but i am proud of that accomplishment.  Between Facebook, Blogger, Instagram, Pinterest, text, email, and now, Google plus (if i want to see pictures of Luke), it just seems like a lot (and no, i don't twitter).  Remember when people passed notes in class and you got mail in the mailbox?  Remember Photo mat where pictures were developed (i actually applied to work at Photo mat but was denied because i failed the prerequisite math test)?  Why is that suddenly sounding easier?  

Why is keeping track of your third cousin once removed now a prerequisite and answering 50 emails a day part of etiquette.  With a camera on our phone, we also have apx 2,000 pictures a year to sort and index.  As the comic Jim Gafferty said, "i have more pictures of my son than my dad ever looked at me".  Am i the only one on technology overload?  Hmm, so... in my quest to sort out all the before mentioned communication options, I'm trying to decide what to do about blogging.    

When i saw my friend Karen's book she made from her blog, i started writing.  I loved her book.  These days i don't scrap book, or journal (i write Cameron each week instead), so i liked the idea of a photo journal, a sort of family history.  The problem is i have been a terrible slacker.  So... my goal now made public (or at least to Karen as she is my only reader) i vow to do better.  I will blog at least once a month.  There, it isn't much, but it is a start.  On we go soldiers of technology!  I am going to catch up from the fall and then march forward.