Functional pottery made in Wisconsin

Functional pottery made in Wisconsin

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

fun in Neenah

Last week while in Neenah we went on Friday to a wonderful coffee shop in downtown Appleton called Brewed Awakenings. Fantastic coffee, sandwiches and gelato made by them. Definitely a place to take your time at. It is located at 107 East College Avenue in Appleton.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The rewards of babysitting!!

I enjoy babysitting the grandkids, and since my daughters had to make a trip over to Eau Claire for an overnight, I became "incharge" for the duration. And, because we seemed to be doing okay, Amanda rewarded me with a decadent treat of handmade truffles from a small " designer " chocolatier located at 18 S Barstow St in downtown Eau Claire. The photo doesn't do the selection justice. But wow, do they taste wonderful. Thank you Amanda!!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Summer and dragonflies and mosquitos and...

Wow, have been incredibly busy working each day out in the studio. The tourists aren't really up as yet, so it is always a wonderful time to make stuff. And the hot weather we had up til today is glorious for drying clay! As usual, Barry hates the heat, and although it is very exhausting to work in it I appreciate the amount of work I get done each day. Our studio is looking fairly summery, with lots of grapevine baskets planted with beautiful wave petunias. We sell quite a few of these over the summer, all ready to go, instant decor. And they can reuse the baskets for many years!

This Saturday Barry is going to man our booth at the Saint Germain Chamber's "Walk in the Woods" art fair. I will help set up, then hurry back here to open the studio. The show is located at the chamber itself, so very visible as you drive thru town. I only wish the couple of craft shows the town does were as easy to find.

I love the scents of early summer, our lilac finally bloomed, and now the lilies of the valley are everywhere! My siberian catmint is starting to grow tall, soon purple flowers will be topping the 3 foot high stalks. The hummingbirds love these, and feed happily for most of the summer off the garden in the front of the workarea. When you brush against the siberian catmint leaves or water them they have a herby, tangy fragrance. Love it. Well, back to the studio.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

A Trip To Birnamwood

Yesterday I left the studio and ventured down to visit my dad, who at 94, lives at an assisted living place. It is always with bittersweet pain and love that I view these visits, as I more remember how dynamic and alive he was compared with the old guy he is now. This trip I determined to really let'her flicker and make a day of it, so I left Saint Germain in the morning, and got down to Birnamwood to take him back up to Antigo for lunch and then to visit his brother who is in the nursing home there.

My dad worked hard on the Chicago Northwestern Railroad for 32 years, before that he worked in the firepit at White Lake's Yawkey-Bissell flooring mill. As a kid I was always surprised by how many sandwiches he would make, and the fruit he would pack for his "lunch", but later I realized that he was packing for more than one meal. In the early years as a fireman-then-engineer on the trains they could be worked unlimited hours. Slowly the union was able to cut the shifts down to 16 hours, then 12, then finally 8 hours before a crew would replace them. Imagine that. So of course his lunches had to hold some meals, out on the line, traveling through the countryside there was no Subway to stop at.
My dad now is a bit vacant at times, but the longer he gets to interact with people the more he perks up and will start to talk and poke jokes etc with you. There is a fantastic book called "Another Country" by Mary Pipher which gives much insight into the minds of our aging parents. I remember bits of that book when I get frustrated during my nightly phone call to him cause he can't hear me over the roar of his tv! It is a good book to hold as a reference in your mind as we all drift closer to gaining a passport to that "country". We cannot fault the residents of that country for being different, they are viewing things from a different angle.

But, my day with dad was good, and even though he was wearing flannel pajama bottoms instead of khakis, it didn't matter, they were clean! And we had a great lunch at the Farmer's Home in Antigo and a nice visit with my sister Jan and got to chat with Uncle George. All in all, a far better day than being just a potter, it was good to be a daughter.