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Last year, the professor and I decided that we wanted to get a potted Christmas tree that could serve it’s purpose during the holidays, live outside for the rest of the year, then come back in for Christmas 2011.

We ended up finding a sweet little tree that was just big enough for our space. The tag read “decorative houseplant perfect for windows, bright dining and living areas” so I thought it was exactly what we were looking for. When I got it home and read the care instructions however, I realized that this particular variety of evergreen could not tolerate temperatures below 45 degrees. At the time, it didn’t seem like a big deal since the tree was pretty small and looked more like a house plant than a tree anyway. So, the little tree stayed in the house until April (sans decorations) when he was moved outside to live for the summer.

Fast forward to mid-October when the temperatures were threatening to dip into the 40’s for the first time this season. Time for the little tree to come inside. Except now, the little tree had grown so much during the summer that it needed to be transplanted into a bigger pot. With a bit of swearing and swelling (apparently I have a skin sensitivity to evergreen needles. brilliant!), the now not-so-little-tree got repotted and moved into the studio.

Look at that nice big, WIDE tree! I never knew neglecting a potted plant could yield so much growth. Maybe if I had neglected my herb garden a little more, my empty ice cube trays would be full of basil pesto. What to do with this behemoth? It’s a high production time of year and I need every inch of studio space for work. Plus it’s pretty much a given that I will inevitably trip on it every time I pass by (hello swelling!). We ended up moving the monster into a tight corner of my diningroom where sadly, it no longer looks like a houseplant.

That’s where he’ll stay until after the holidays when I’ll have to figure out a more permanent solution. For now though, I plan to at least get some use out of him since it’s time for my 2011 Whirl ornaments to make their debut. The beast should at least earn his keep.

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1. Busy.
2. Handles. And more handles. And still more handles.
3. New pieces in the shop.
4. Squirrel guard.
5. My favorites from my favorite.
6. One of the best things about August.

Hope your lately has been treating you well.

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Chuck on Staten Island* didn’t see his shadow which supposedly means we’re due for an early spring. I’m sure that the ice, rain and cloud-covered sky had nothing to do with his prediction. It’s a nice thought though, as the mini mobile is currently frozen to the ground.

I wasn’t in any hurry to drive anywhere anyway, so I spent my morning doing web work and  photographing some pieces for my shops. Now it’s time to park myself in front of the space heater (a very guilty pleasure) and finish up some slip designs. Maybe the car will defrost itself.

* Though not as well known as Punxsutawney Phil, NYC also has its own groundhog on Staten Island. This year, he refrained from biting the mayor.

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let the sun shine in

My studio is graced with the most beautiful sunlight during the winter. And with all the snow that’s piled up outside right now, I can often work for several hours without turning on the lights. It almost makes up for the fact that it will be several more months until I can work with the door and windows open again.

My bedroom is sunny AND warm, so I took a cue from Maddy (who afternoons there) and moved my stagnant Amaryllis to a spot by the window. He seems much happier now, so maybe I’ll see a bloom by Valentines day. Better late than never.

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Oh, hi. Yes, I’m still here, in the studio surrounded by bubble wrap and boxes. Thanks so much to all who have chosen to give the gift of handmade this year. It’s kept me most happily busy.

Anyone still planning on purchasing from one of my shops should do so by Tuesday, December 21st to ensure delivery by Christmas (within the U.S.).  I have a soft spot for procrastinators (perhaps because I am one), so expedited shipping will be available for an additional fee. My last shipment until after the holidays will be the morning of December 24th.

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A few pieces from my last firing. I actually did  a happy dance when I saw that they all came out ok. All are on their way to their new homes.

And in the studio today, starting the process all over again.

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And just like that……..

*  poof  *  It’s November.

Wasn’t it just summer? I guess not since the above photo is a cooling kiln full of holiday ornaments and orders. Cracked open just a bit with the hopes that it will cool just a little bit faster. Faster, please.

Let’s see. I’ve been working on a new line (so excited to share it next week), booking shows, designing ornaments, filling both wholesale and retail orders and stocking up on inventory for the holiday season. What better time to finally get to my New Years resolution (as in, the new year of 2010) and start a blog?  I’m sure I can squeeze it in.

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