Monday, December 01, 2014

Better Than Nothing

Well, there's not a whole lot of anything going on around here right now.  I believe I have truly begun to hate winter.  And yes, I know it's not actually winter yet.  The damp coldness here has become relentless to me.  Like a lot of things.  I am so thankful for the occasional warm and sunny day though and we have had a few lately.  In fact, this whole week is supposed to be warm, although it may be a little rainy at times.  However,  rain is easier to take when it's warm, to me anyway.  And there have been a few new things surprise me this fall.  For one, my little witch hazel tree bloomed for the first time.  I was beginning to wonder if it really was a witch hazel but a couple of weeks back it burst forth in it's little yellow explosions.

The tea plants are not new but they have made considerable progress this past year.  The 3 red blooming bushes did die but the white blooming variety has done well.  One bush is up to about 3 feet tall.

As an experiment I planted 2 on the north-facing hillside behind the house.  It has pretty rich, humousy soil with great drainage.  I planted one other at the bottom of the hollar.  The lowest spot of my valley for ya'll not familiar with the local vernacular.  It also has good dark soil but stays a bit damper than the others.  What the two groups have in common is that they both are in part to mostly shade and they are both doing very well.  I really hope to be able to harvest enough leaves this spring to at least make a little tea.  Or attempt to make tea anyway.

In other news I finally go to the point of desperation and raised my pottery wheel high enough to throw standing up.  I had been able to throw a few things lately but the pain was just getting nerve wrecking.  After Jack helped me get the wheel set up I threw a number of things and I have to say it worked out pretty well.  I wish I had not been so stubborn and had tried this well before now.  It's easier not only because I'm not sitting down and putting pressure on my butt joint but it's just easier to move around.  I can come and go from the wheel with ease, moving finished products or if I forgot a tool and such.  No standing up and down and up and down.  There are a few little things to work out over time but I'd say this is working well enough to let me get a couple of loads of work to the stores before Christmas.

So, that's about it for now.  Hopefully things will brighten up over the next few days and relieve some of this misery.


Pablo said...

"butt joint" -- burned into my brain!

texasann said...

Annie -
Glad to hear the throwing is back on schedule. Hermit Jim received the mugs for his birthday, and seemed really pleased. He finally got the hint "Something to do with your blog..., and liked the fact that they were your work. Thanks for coming through on short notice.
I, too, don't particularly like the cold, but I have new gas logs in the fireplace, so I'm looking forward to a little bit of winter. 'Long about mid-January, I'm done, though. Our fall has been spectacular this year, lots of color, but it's the first time in about 5 years we are not in severe drought. Guess the water made the difference. Low 50s for a high today, then back to the 70s tomorrow, and the rest of the week...welcome to the Gulf Cost South.
Stay warm, and busy...

Ed said...

Now that you have a setup that works, I hesitate to mention this but perhaps you should try suspending yourself from the rafters. Hook your ankles up to a hoist and suspend yourself over the wheel. On the plus side, you can see the inside of your pot easier! If your forget a tool or need to move something, just swing side to side! :)

Rich said...

I agree with Pablo, the 12 year-old boy in my head thinks "pressure on my butt joint" is the funniest collection of words I've heard today.

ErinFromIowa said...

I love witch hazel. So pretty and we use it all the time. I have a bottle in the refrigerator. I give my daughters a bottle as needed. Good stuff.
I am so excited about the tea possibilities.
I learned to throw standing up. I actually never have thrown sitting down. So glad it is working out for you.

JO said...

Interesting about the tea plants didn't know you could grow them around these parts.

Why are we so stubborn even when we know that an adjustment just might be the key to success and less pain. Hope it continues to work out for you.

edifice rex said...

Hey Pablo! haha! you said 'butt'!! well, I figure that's a more evocative term than sacroilliac! People would say...wth?? where is that? lol!

Hey Ann! I really hope Jim liked the mugs and I just made a bunch more so I'm saving 2 for you. Our fall was very pretty too but once the leaves are off the trees I am totally ready for spring!

Hey Ed! Ha! you know, the BFA keeps suggesting that I try something like that too! only problem, all the blood would rush to my head and I'd pass out knowing me.

Hey Rich! well, that's what I'm here for...providing inappropriate laughter at any given moment.

Hey Erin! Yeah, love witch hazel! I'm looking forward to making my own. Or trying to anyway.

Hey Jo! Yes, there are actually 2 tea plantations in the US so there are a few areas that can grow it.
I should have learned by now not to be so stubborn! Maybe one day!

Island Rider said...

So glad you found a solution. I just love your heading photo. It makes me smile everytime I see it (which is oftener than I comment). I love the colors and the hens slight smile. Come to Florida. It's warmer here and we'll take you to a better place to eat than last time.

edifice rex said...

Hey IR! now, I'll hold you to that offer! lol!
I'd love to come to Florida right now if my tailbones could handle the drive. It will get better though.