It was a dark and rainy day. The bowls were still too wet to trim and the clay was turning to mush in my hands. At the wheel in my damp, cold garage all I was getting was cranky. After I gave up on clay for the day, I knew just how to spend my time.
Take a field trip.
On a rainy day like today, it seems like an odd thing to do. I know. But what I've found out along this sometimes bumpy creative road is field trips are not only necessary, they are vital to keeping the vitality coming in especially when it feels like the inspiration light is going out.
So, I forced myself to back a way from the wheel. Set the wet clay down.
I put on my boots and parka, wound a scarf around my neck and headed out into the famous Portland rain. I had a bunch of little errands that I'd put off, so now it was the perfect time to run them. Off to home store for salt for my salt grinder. Into the art store for a bottle of clear glaze.
Down the street to that lovely haven of silliness and tactile wonderland: Craft Warehouse. I wandered the isles, looking at mini fairy lands complete with twinkle lights. Coloring books for adults aimed at encouraging 'mindfulness'.
Journals and wall art from the silly to the snarky.
And my favorite, a glue gun wonderland of pompous, beads, and pipe cleaners in all those happy childlike colors.
Heaven really is in the small things.
I roamed the baby store for a new outfit for my granddaughter and played with the cutest monkey finger puppet. I almost bought it, but truth be told, it would have been for me. You see, she's too little to play with it yet.
But there's the key: play. I forget this too often to count.
I get all busy and all business and all work. And no play. I know it and you know it and we all know it, but in our culture it gets pushed aside so much, we all forget the importance and value of play. Recess isn't just about running around a field, it's about so, so much more. It's about breathing in the fresh air, feeling the rain on our faces and walking in puddles. And getting out side of our heads and getting a little mindless.
Field trips are a chance to take a trip beyond our working day, see new things, have an adventure, smile, laugh and yes, even play with a monkey finger puppet. (As long as no one is looking,)