Monday, October 31, 2011


A summing up.

This month I was:

Reading... Yes I was. Kathleen Norris. Madeleine L'Engle. Angie Smith. NONFICTION, people. Do you know how uncharacteristic this is??? Reading is my escape. It's not supposed to make me think. (Please don't judge me.) But, surprisingly, I've really enjoyed it all!!

Watching... Castle. NCIS. Downton Abbey. Season two is not nearly as good as the first season. I hate when that happens.

Cooking... Glorying in my crockpot. Oatmeal cooked overnight so as to be ready first thing in the morning... stews simmering all day long... so good.

Creating... I finished up the second round of pottery classes with a grand total of 15 thrown vessels, plus a stack of things that I made at home and brought in for firing/glazing. Can't wait til they're all done and can be brought home. Also, I have dusted off the sewing machine again... time to start sewing costumes.

Enjoying... a month of rather glorious weather. Yes there were some gloomy days, but on the whole we had a rather lovely month.

Celebrating... my birthday. I am now the answer to life, the universe, and everything. How bizarre is that?!

Teaching... a bit more reluctantly than last month. The novelty has worn off, and Ellie's a bit more whiny about things she doesn't like. I've been chanting our little mantra... "I am, I can, I ought, I will"... over and over and over again. "Oh, right", she says, and then we get on with it.

Thankful... for cozy woolen knits and knee-high socks. For food to eat. For a vehicle that runs well (even though it has no heat). For leaves that glow red against the evergreens, and roses that refuse to stop blooming. For my community of friends. For a cupboard full of different kinds of tea. For sunset skies and the croak of ravens.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

craft fail... or no?

Just keeping it real here...

Today I tried using polymer clay for the first time. I've read all the warnings about keeping it separate from all food-related items, so I bought myself a little toaster oven to bake the clay in.

Yeah, not so smart.

This clay was white. White.

And oh, the stench!! And oh, the coldness in my house when I had to leave the doors and windows open for an hour to get rid of that stench.

So I almost threw the pieces out, but then I figured that it wouldn't harm anything to see how they'd look with the second coat of coloured clay that I was planning to do, and had already poured out anyhow.

This time, I cooked them in my oven. Double-wrapped in foil because I'm paranoid that way.

They didn't turn out too badly... for being burnt to a crisp originally.

I have more clay here... I think I'm going to have to psych myself up a bit before I open up another package!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

saturday sky.

At this time of the year, the evening light is simply magical. It glows like at no other time.

The big problem? When it's at its most glorious, I'm usually in the kitchen, looking longingly out the window.

So, this evening, I decided that sometimes life has to take second place to art... I asked my family if they really needed dinner right away, or if they could wait an hour or so. They sweetly decided to humour me, so I grabbed the camera and headed out. It was worth it!!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Five minutes: catch

Catch me if you can!
I hear it tinkle like bells from all around me.
Juggling this that and the other thing all at once, spinning balls, whirling plates; a life revolving in dispassionate circles; me at the centre trying to keep control, knowing that a moment's lapse will send everything shattering.

Only it's not true.

That's not me at the centre. That's you. Steady, unmovable, unshakeable. A still centre in the whirling where I can rest.

Please, God, catch me. Hold me still.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


I've been musing almost non-stop the past couple of days... about obligation.

Without going into huge amounts of detail, here's the story.

I'm part of a group that meets regularly; I've been part of it since its inception, several years back. It's purpose is not super practical, but it has always been fun to be part of. And we're all friends.

However I'm no longer having fun. Several factors associated with being part of this group are currently creating stress in my life, and I've become rather cranky. Not pleasant for me, and no fun for the people I'm with.

The big problem for me?? Due to my unique-to-the-group skill set, the group does not function at all well without me.

Hence my conundrum.

On the one hand, why should I spend time and effort doing something that's causing me stress?

On the other hand, am I justified in causing others to be unable to do something that they love?

Where do you draw the line between looking after yourself, and serving others?