Friday, August 20, 2021

Clouds and Sun and a Village

In Oregon, it’s been a record breaking hot summer. But today, the clouds have moved in and I’m basking in the cool, dampness. I smell the possibility of rain. It’s a refreshing relief. 

Another relief, we finally have a contractor to fix our home. After living with mold and soggy floors, with no sink or dishwasher and removed cupboards and countertops, I’m breathing easier knowing there is an end in sight for this unsightly mess. 

Back to work. 

Working in clay is not just what I do but who I am. I’ve written before about the difficulty of working in clay in hot and dry weather.  And how I work around it anyway because I love what I do. This last month challenged me to find a way to work around a damaged house and wash dishes in the same sink I use for my studio clean up. 

I almost gave up but lucky for me, I had an outdoor show coming up. I needed to get my new work finished.

Getting out with a little help from friends. 

I’ve never done an outdoor show where I’ve had my own booth. I’ve done gallery shows. Group shows. And member shows where I had a set of group shelves. But I’ve never had to set up my own display tent, table, chairs and shelves. 

Luckily, I didn’t have to go it alone. I was invited to join a group of potters for a one day outdoor show. One potter is loaning me an 8x8’ tent booth. Another friend is loaning me a folding table. My daughter is giving me her camping chairs for the day. And my husband is helping me with set up, take down and tech support. 

I’m grateful for my village. 

I’ve always been independent and hard working. I was taught to go it alone and be strong. But what I’ve learned lately is working together works much better for everyone. 

Asking questions. Sharing information. Learning from others who have more experience. And being able to admit I need help, scary as that is, is teaching me more than I could ever learn on my own. 

I know the old saying, “It takes a village”, is wise. But I didn’t ever think I’d need one, or had one, but I’m sure glad I do. 

Sunday, August 8, 2021

Right Now

Sweet summer breezes flow through my window calming my mind and body. Being in the moment, any moment, even this small moment with total attention is my ongoing challenge. 

Today, I look up at the cerulean sky and cotton ball clouds. And take a good deep breath. That’s all. Just that. 

Because right now, with what’s happening inside my home and outside in the world, this is what I need to do. Maybe this is all I can do. Maybe this is all any of us can do. 


Yes, covid cases are rising. Again. It’s scary. It’s maddening. And I really can’t do a thing about it. Yes, viruses live among us all the time. They mutate to survive.

Taking a deep breath is one thing I can do.  Other things we can all do to survive is get vaccinated, use good hygiene and practice social distancing. 

I’m grateful to be fully vaccinated. I’m relieved my husband and children are also vaccinated. We can see each other safely. And I can see my vaccinated friends, too. 

Right now.

It’s easier said than done. Right now, my kitchen has no sink, cabinets are missing and my floor is chopped up in sections of subfloor, old vinyl and laminate wood plank. This is due to a  plumbing failure and water damage. 

It’s been scary. I’ve had many sleepless nights. Yet, I’ve found help from family, friends and neighbors. The support and understanding flowing my way from their hearts is calming mine. Their stories, advice and helpful information gives me the strength and courage I need. 

Right here. 

Several people have said to me this week, “One thing at a time.” This is how I can focus. Cleaning up the dust from the demo in my kitchen. Washing my dishes by hand. Making blackberry syrup for pancakes. Weeding my garden. 

In the studio, I can do small things. Right here, I can glue magnets on my diversity rainbow hearts. I can take new product pictures. 

I can update my Etsy shop. 

I can get ready for an upcoming outdoor show.

Here on the window seat, I can rest for a bit. 

Breathe in the cool breeze and savor the sunshine.

Right now. 

Right here.