Saturday, March 31, 2018

Saturday Was Good Too

I had an appointment with our counselor this morning. Life is a challenge but I feel like I'm making progress. Sometimes I forget that progress is the name of the game, and yet it's happening just the same.

I was invited to the zoo today. It was bright, sunny, and dry, with a crisp bite in the air. A beautiful day for the zoo. I drove my own vehicle and met them there. I've missed out on so many trips here and there. This one was a gift, a bit of time together that put something back into my soul, something I hardly knew was lacking.

Nine, when freed from the confines of his stroller, found running about and splashing through a puddle to be great fun. He's hard to keep track of so his freedom was short lived.

On my way home from our outing, I stopped at the pottery studio, because that is what I do these days. I can't go into Wegmans anymore without mud on my clothes. Ha ha!

Friday, March 30, 2018

Good Friday

The daycare was closed today. They NEVER close that daycare. But they did today. I guess miracles still happen.

My alarm went off as usual and I got up like usual too, but instead of going to work, I went to drop my car off for some repairs. I was told it would likely take the better part of the morning. A few hours, maybe. More time than it would take to eat breakfast in the little diner across the street.

My friend Brenda met me for breakfast. It was a short, but sweet visit. When she left I gave up my table for incoming customers, moved to the counter, and called my son Dave. I walked down the street to his house, let myself in, and spent the morning with The Trio. Lucas snuggled up beside me and I sat with my arm wrapped around him for a good long time. We both soaked it in. Him because I don't see him much, and me because he's nine and probably won't want to snuggle his grandma for too much longer. Maybe my grandchildren love me as much as the kids at work after all.

When the vehicle was back in working order, and a new inspection sticker graced the windshield, I headed back to Webster and met my favorite Bethany for lunch at Panera Bread. We need to meet like this more often.

Before rush hour traffic could descend upon us, I took a drive to the pottery studio to pay my shelf fee for the month. I stayed to trim a bowl and left soon after. Perhaps I shall make a return trip tomorrow. We'll see.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Pie Dish

It's wet and rainy. Not a great day for outdoor pictures, but in spite of that I took my little bowl out to the back porch and took a few photos. I'm still very pleased with this little creation. It makes me smile and I'm sure I'll be making many more like it. I already have one on my shelf waiting to be trimmed and fired.

Tomorrow afternoon I need to go back to the studio and pay my monthly shelf fee. The money will eventually come out of my bank account, but at the moment I am waiting on a new bank card. It's been an interesting month without my debit card which I cancelled four weeks ago because it went AWOL. The new one never showed and so it was cancelled also (today) and another new one ordered. It's like living in the "old days" where cash was the way to pay.

Tomorrow morning I will wake up at the usual time and head off to get my vehicle repaired and inspected, catch a light breakfast at the little diner where my boy works on weekends, and do lunch with my favorite Bethany. It's kind of nice having a day off to plan something. Maybe I'll even take pictures of my food. Ha ha!

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Bits and Pieces

* My Minnesota family has come and gone. It hardly seems possible they were here just last night... How can it feel so long ago already? I didn't take pictures this time. Not many anyway. Just a few at the restaurant on my birthday.

* My sweet brother is having a struggle again. He took a fall on Saturday and although the doctor can't find anything wrong, Tim is having trouble walking. I didn't get out to see him on Sunday. Another meeting kept me away, but Rachel went. She sent me a "selfie" of her and our big brother.

* I don't have much else to share. This week finds me tired and a little overwhelmed. I am thankful for a short work week as the daycare is closed on Good Friday. I won't be sleeping in because I have an appointment to get my van fixed, but I hope to catch up with myself as I catch up with a few other things too.

* I stopped by the pottery studio after work and found a few of my glazed pieces waiting. Pleasantly surprised by how they turned out. I'll have to take a few pictures when I can get outside in the natural light. Not sure what the chances are of sunshine this weekend, but even rain looks good on pottery.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

The Barn Collective

Yesteryear in Angelica, NY...

Tom, I wish there was a better photo of the barns, but I suppose if not for the family members, there might not be a photo with a barn in it at all.

Visit Tom.

Thursday, March 22, 2018


It was my birthday but rather than getting older, I got younger instead. It all started a few years back when I didn't want to be 45... (see here) Today I caught my oldest son at 36 on my way back to 30. He'll be 37 in September but I've already done that. Twice. Ha ha!

I came home from the daycare to find the house brimming with children. It was awesome. Five grandkids in one room. What could be better than that except ten?

This evening I went out to dinner with my Minnesota family and Little Bear and I ate steak. Oh, yummy!

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Chaos, Cars, and Cookies

Painful. The last couple weeks have been painful. Last week I was pushed to my limit. I was already emotional and the words of a complete stranger left me in a torrent of tears. I felt defeated at the time but the good Lord knew I needed a good long cry in preparation for this week's drama, which I won't get into here. I will say that although I don't like all the commotion, I believe I am learning to deal with it in healthier ways.

My vehicle went in for an inspection on Monday and did not pass. A few repairs and a new tire toward the end of next week should make me safe and legal again, albeit a few hundred dollars poorer. Ha ha!

It was my turn to bring a snack for Treat Day at work. I signed up for the week I couldn't forget... and brought in Birthday Cake Oreos and milk. I don't know anyone who doesn't like Oreo Cookies, and hey! March is a great time for a birthday party. Dontch'a think? Too bad they aren't gluten free.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Home Alone/ Bits and Pieces

* I was substitute teacher for the three year old class at church this morning. There were eighteen little ones and I had two helpers who know more about running the class than I do. It was a good hour. There were no major catastrophes and everyone left smiling.

* I met the Cabinetmaker for lunch after church. We exchanged vehicles as mine is due for an inspection which is difficult to schedule working 7:30 am until 4:30 or 5 pm. I came home after lunch. Perhaps if I had my own car I would have gone back to the pottery studio this afternoon, but I stayed home, mostly alone. I'm not entirely sure how I feel about that.

* Tomorrow I go back to work and into the arms of a dozen or more little ones who will clamor about my knees looking for a bit of attention. I will make Sloppy Joe's for lunch, and hopefully have some time to snuggle my little friend Jonah who is rather attached to me. He cries when I leave the room. Poor little guy! Ha ha!

* In the evening I will go to my CoDA meeting and hope someone shows up beside myself. Last week there were two of us and I was the meeting leader. How about that? Good thing it isn't too hard to read out of the leader's manual. It was a good meeting in spite of small numbers.

* Later this week Minnesota is coming to visit. I am excited, and a bit apprehensive at the same time. Family dynamics are a little strained... I am attempting to step back and let my kids work out the details while being available at the same time. I don't know if I'm doing things right or not, but I'm trying. Perhaps I should charge my camera battery. :0)

The Barn Collective

Another barn from my drive home from church last week. State Rd. Webster, NY. It's kind of sad to think of all the barns that have been lost through the years. Those metal pole barns just aren't the same as these old beauties.

Stop over to the Barn Collective. If we can get enough of a crowd maybe Tom will cook up a bunch of flapjacks! It's maple syrup and pancake season!!!

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Busy, Busy

It's been a busy week at work. My cape is a bit tattered. (My superhero cape, ya know?) Some days I feel a bit like Wonder Woman. Hey! I even got that stack of food put away, and let me tell you, getting everything in the freezer is nothing short of miraculous.

I'm still reveling in the attention of small children. They fight over me. Ha ha! Who have thought? I love them all. I have so many little friends and every day I snuggle new little ones who (maybe) will fight over me in another year or so.

I left this little sculpture on my boss's desk a couple weeks ago. Told her it was a self portrait.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018


I've spent my life loving little ones, and if God will grant my petition, I will spent the rest of my days doing the same.

Several days ago I found this photo hiding in my computer. It's a short drive back to 1979 when I seldom wore shoes. I preferred to wear my socks out on the street and driveway. My mom was a certified daycare provider and someone decided she would be a perfect candidate for an advertisement for new daycare moms. Thus the photograph. One of these children was a visiting neighbor.

The little guy in my arms if Jeffy. He was two, wild, and rascally. We loved him! Mom watched him from the time he was a year old until he started kindergarten. He would have turned 41 years old in February but a late March snowstorm closed school and Jeff went out on his snowmobile for an afternoon of what should have been teenage fun. Instead he had an accident and suffered a serious head injury. He died 26 years ago today when he was just fifteen.

I didn't know Jeff as a teenager. In my mind he's still a preschool child wandering about Mom's house with his "ratty afghan," but I think of him every year when those last winter storms of March dump a foot or two of snow on us and snowmobiles buzz down the road and across the fields. Somewhere his mother is aching as she remembers her sweet boy.

I looked at the photo a day or two ago and thought how I haven't really changed all that much from my own fifteen year old self.  I still hold and snuggle little ones in the very same way, they still know I love them, and I think somehow or other I actually turned into my mom.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

The Barn Collective

Perhaps our snowstorms are over for the season. Then again, perhaps not. One can never be totally sure, can they?

Last week I took my camera to church so I could catch these two barns in snow. I have a tendency to be redundant when it comes to barns, especially good looking barns that I pass often. (Here they are before... one and two.)

It's Daylight Savings Time at The Barn Collective. We're up "early" and in need of some coffee.

Saturday, March 10, 2018


I spent some time at the pottery studio today. Although I didn't feel terribly successful, I did not slump all of my bowls today, just one of them. I'm feeling more comfortable and less out of place there. Not everyone is a stranger anymore and I know better what I am doing and how to get it done.

Jeff was at the studio with a plethora of pots in various stages of development. I shared a shelf with him back in the fall when we both took the Introductory II class. Our shelf was a bit crowded as he is quite prolific when it comes to pottery. Now we both rent shelves instead. 

I came home from the studio (and went to the store) with mud on my knees. That's part of the uniform when playing with clay. Kind of like baby spit up comes with working at a daycare center. I wear both proudly, and with a smile. 

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

In a Slump

I decided this evening that I am "in a slump."

I looked up the saying and found this-
1 to be suddenly reduced to a much lower level 
2 to suddenly fall or sit because you are very tired or unconscious

The bowls I've thrown lately have all collapsed. Perhaps I am pushing the limits of the clay (maybe that should be obvious), and maybe I'm pushing my own limits. Either way, as soon as I hit a particular point, down they go. There is no fixing a flopped pot. The best one can do is wire it off and settle for a much smaller pot, or scrape it off the wheel and start over. (I ended up with two small bowls.)

I looked for a photo for a fallen pot. This was about all I could find. (It looks a little like a cowboy hat...) Maybe I'll take my camera inside for my next wheel throwing adventure and get one of my own. How's that for positive thinking? Ha ha!

Sunday, March 04, 2018

Bits and Pieces

* I guess the weekend is just about over.

* My last pottery class was Thursday evening, but I'm not finished with the pieces I started. I'll have to go back a few times in order to finish up.

* I decided to throw a new bowl Saturday afternoon. I've been too exhausted to think about signing up for another class, so I bought a studio membership and rented a shelf instead. Ha ha! Now I have a key to the building. I probably should carve out a time to go in on a regular basis.

* It's my month off serving in the children's ministry at church. I checked in with Kristen anyway and went to find my seat in the sanctuary. I hadn't been there but a minute or two when I got a text on my phone. It was Kristen. The two year old's teacher called in sick and she needed a replacement. I'm learning to be spontaneous.

* It was a gorgeous day, bright and sunny, and sleepy. I knew I should be out soaking in some yummy vitamin D, but I curled up in bed for a long nap instead. When I woke up I played with my grandson (Number 9) for a bit, and then took a ride down to the bay.

* The kids are having Mexican Chicken and Rice for lunch tomorrow.

The Barn Collective

Another barn from last week's drive home from church. It's looking a little haggard in some spots...

I wish my memory could take me back to childhood so I could look again at this barn my father drove past so many times. Surely there were cows grazing, and maybe a horse or two munching a bit of grass. Maybe there were even children playing tag in the yard, but I can't remember now. Funny how time stands still in some areas of the mind, and in other areas going backward is nigh unto impossible.

Up the road a piece from this barn, was a fancy white house with a creek meandering along the edge of the property,  the creek eventually running under the road and off into the woods on the other side. That house and property I can pull up in my 50 year old memory bank, probably because of the stop sign at the corner, and the ducks that were always sitting in the water. That place isn't the same anymore either... Time just keeps marching on, weathering us and leaving us (sometimes) beautifully haggard.

Put your boots on and come on over to the Barn Collective.

Friday, March 02, 2018

Oh, Fickle Month of March

March is fickle. There was no snow on the ground yesterday. In fact it was sixty degrees earlier this week. I left my pottery class early last night (I'd run out of things to work on) and drove home in a drizzle of rain. It wasn't long after my return that the wind picked up. I heard the house squeak as the wind whipped around it, and I drifted off to sleep.

Sergio asked me early if I wanted him to clear out the driveway. "It looks really bad out there," he said. But I told him I'd see how it went... Ha ha! There was a foot or two of heavy wet snow in the driveway. Once I'd conceded defeat, we worked on clearing a path to the road together. It took both of us to break through the barrier the snowplow had created at the bottom of the driveway.

I must not have left too much later than normal. The roads were slushy and slick, and the drive was slow. Thankfully, the back roads I travel weren't too busy. We all took it slow this morning, everyone out driving, that is. I arrived at work late, but only by about ten minutes "Tot Spot time."

On my lunch hour I went for a ride and took a few pictures. I didn't travel far, just down the road and across the canal.

Maybe I should have used the time to build a snowman or two on the daycare sidewalk... Ha ha! (They would probably have me committed.)