Choo Choo

I've been away from the blog for a few weeks, as I was at a conference, and then studio reno-ing (more on that another day) and then Supercrawl. A start of a busy September indeed!

Hamilton mugs! 

Hamilton mugs! 

Now that I'm back in the swing of things (and the fire bans have been lifted), I've stuffed my van with pots and have headed up north to start firing for the holiday season! This is my first time firing a train kiln, a kiln design that looks like a train car, and when fired correctly should make that warm and cozy chugging sound. My kind of sound. 

Pots unpacked and ready to be loaded

Pots unpacked and ready to be loaded

This firing is particularly special, as it is the last firing this kiln will ever see! After unloading next week, Duncan Aird and I will be tearing her down, and giving the bricks a new life in our very own kiln back down in the Hammer! Buildings are underway and we're hoping to have the beauty built before Christmas. 

So I'm up here toasting this sweet kiln many thanks, with good company, and good food, and looking forward to many firings ahead!

Jeff Martens, loading the kiln like a boss. 

Jeff Martens, loading the kiln like a boss. 

Stacked.  

Stacked.  

Sink or Swim

Tonight was my last shift as a part-time waitress.

For the last three years I have been building my ceramic business while juggling various part time jobs, sometimes several at the same time. With a new first home (and a new first mortgage!)  I didn't have the guts to go headstrong into a ceramic career and hope to make it. I worried I would fail.

What I've discovered in the last little while is that there is no "hope" - one doesn't HOPE to succeed. They succeed, or they don't succeed. I often ask my partner "What are the chances that___ will work out?" His response is always wise (though sometimes irritating)  " 50/50. It will work out, or it won't."

Two months ago, I decided it was time to remove my personal flotation device, and see if I will sink, or swim. If I will succeed, or not succeed. If I will make it, or not make it.

The funny thing about a flotation device is you can never truly swim with it on. You can bob around with your bum wet, kick your feet and splash your arms, and maybe get a face full of the sea when a wave crashes by. You won't sink, but you won't swim either. Sometimes you just have to cut yourself loose from the ropes holding you back, so that you can fly. You have to step off that ledge, rip off the bandaid, and SWIM!

So after a long last night at work,  I'm sitting in my living room with my two cats and toasting to stepping off that ledge. "I will make it! I will make a living from clay! I will work in my studio and make pots to bring joy to people's lives. I will teach classes and share the love of clay with others! I will succeed!"