Bonding over pottery

Painting on glaze at a shop in Montavilla
This is me, painting on glaze at a shop in Montavilla

Sunday morning was a bad morning for me. Emotional, sad, blech. The kind of thing that takes the wind out of you. But I am blessed with a caring, perceptive, and loving daughter.

“Let’s go do pottery,” she said, seeing how sad I was.

There’s a great little shop within walking distance of the house, called Pottery Fun, that’s silly and simple and easy, and yes, fun. We walked into the brightly lit and colorful shop and were greeted instantly by a super friendly woman who put us at ease and told us how it worked. Tara had been there before a couple of times, but it was my first time.

Our table was filled with tools to use
Our table was filled with tools to use

Piece of cake. You pick a fired piece off a shelf. Each piece has the price on it. For that price, you can use any of their paints, stamps, and glazes, and you can take as long as you like to build your masterpiece. The firing is also included. There was a wall of glazes and we played with the coloured tiles for awhile, holding them together and choosing which combinations would look best. We chose two spots at a table near the windows, and were bathed with November sun the whole time we sat there. That was the first thing to lift my mood.

Tara's honeycomb mug with bees
Tara’s honeycomb mug with bees

I wanted something simple, and was thinking flower pot. Tara saw the bowl I chose and suggested fruit bowl instead. It may look better in my kitchen than full of dirt; we will just see. Tara has been treating herself to cold weather luxuries in the form of teas, cocoas, and butter beer (She taught herself to make it after discovering it’s a favourite drink at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry)(no, there’s no beer in it). To further luxuriate, she wanted a new mug.

She had a theme in mind for the mug too, and began trying to sketch out a honeycomb design, but faltered. The helpful ladies behind the counter looked up a honeycomb image and printed it out for her to use. Great service! She then painted on some bees and decorated some flowers for the staff to attach to the side.

The shape of my awesome bowl made me think a simple design would be best, so I didn’t crowd out the fabulous ridges with too much busy-ness. I chose a dark purple and a wine red, and blended them half and half, then used one of their handy applicators to swirl on some dark yellow spirals (the colour was “Pooh Bear”) all over it.

Tara used the same applicators to draw her design as well. It’s so nice not to have to buy all the tools, and just grab a brush, or sponge, or towel, or pencil that is available at the table.

It’s a perfect cheer-me-up shop. The atmosphere was peaceful and happy. There were two birthday parties in the back room while we were there. The second party included several Russian families so we heard their fascinating language filtering through the sounds of children laughing. At a table near us, dads and their kids were glazing menorahs. I was warmed by the sunshine on my shoulders and feeling good being creative.

My most favourite companion in the whole world sat right across from me.

Miss T shows me her honeycomb mug
Miss T shows me her honeycomb mug. (And yes, her T-shirt says “No.” and her hoodie says “Dork” so together they spell DONORK)

We will go pick them up tomorrow and see how the pieces turned out. I’m so eager to see them!

7 thoughts on “Bonding over pottery

  1. I am so sorry to hear you were down and depressed. I hope you are doing better.

    Your gorgeous daughter Tara, had the right medicine in mind. What an awesome idea. Looking behind you I see so many creative creatures and objects to apply your talents. I love the choice you made. It is so you! I can hardly wait to see the end result.

    Yesterday, Nov. 20, was the 12th anniversary of my first husband’s passing. I doubt anyone other than myself and his children remembered. Maintaining a positive attitude during the day when all I wanted to do was crawl in a corner and mourn again was a huge challenge.

    Life goes on.

    I love you dearly cousin. I know the sorrows and depressions that we each carry seem insurmountable at the moment but we do wake each morning with the strength to smile again and your smile brighten so many of our lives!

    Hugs and kisses,

    1. I wish I could have loaned you Tara for that sad anniversary. I hope you are feeling more sunshine than clouds as the date moves away.

      Myself, I am much happier today. Doing art is a great way to set a mind on a higher plane. Leave all those sad thoughts on the side, and embrace the other things in life as well!

  2. While I sure hate days like that … something just doesn’t feel right … I am impressed that you got out and creative. So glad you had Tara to encouage you and I love that you bathed in the November sun. Be sure to post a “finished product” photo!

    1. I know, right?! I will certainly add a finished photo or two! The sun that day was delicious. It’s been chilly for these parts (Portland stays above freezing most of the winter), in the twenties for days, and the sun surprised and delighted me. I can forget how wonderful it is until I’m warm and it’s blasting through the windows.

  3. Sounds like a really cool place and so close to home, how perfect. I immediately start thinking, “what would I choose?” I actually collect McCoy Pots in pastel colours and spotted the little pot on your work table with all the brushes. I mentally said “ohhhh, thats cute”. It’s so sweet that you daughter could see you needed cheering up and is so caring, that’s really lovely. Nothing changes a mood faster than spending time with someone you love.

    1. I tried to include photos that would show the inside of the place, and get readers thinking about what they could do at the shop. It’s so easy for people to be creative when plopped into that environment, but so hard to get oneself into that environment. I am *so grateful* for my daughter for pushing me out the door.

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