Saturday, November 6, 2010

Clay Confessions

I have a confession to make.

Once a week, I leave my kids and husband at home to eat dinner alone (which I leave in a nice warm crock-pot) and I go out and play with clay. And it is my favorite night of the week.

I started going to a ceramics class a few months ago. It’s something I have always wanted to do; I just never made the time to take a class. It always felt kind of frivolous and impractical.

Maybe I felt a little guilty taking time away from the family to do something fun. Maybe I was just afraid to try something new.

Whatever my objection was, I got over it late one night when I was alone and feeling sorry for myself. I decided if my husband can devote a night or two to playing guitar every week, I could try an 8-week clay class.

So I signed up for a ceramics workshop through our city’s parks and rec and almost immediately realized it would take me much, much longer than 8 weeks to learn how to make anything on a potter’s wheel.

And that is the problem with learning crafts as an adult. Everyone understands why something looks crappy when a 7-year-old makes it. Not so much when an adult throws a bumpy, lopsided “mug.”

“Oh, you made that?” They look suspiciously between me and one of my kids.

As one of my new ceramic’s class friends gently put it after glancing at my first “box,” "Nope, not a Christmas present yet.”

But somehow I refused to give up, to fail at throwing pots. If I can train and run a marathon, I can take a piece of raw clay and fashion a useful dish – maybe even something beautiful.

Several months into this adventure, my mugs still look pretty lopsided and “unique,” but my family loves them. And in their own way, I think they might look forward to Daddy night once a week anyhow. 


  1. did you really make that! Gooooooood job!!!!

  2. I am glad that you can take time to be still and know that He is God. I am sure you are appreciating how He makes all things perfect. Love Mom

  3. Delightful. I love your way with words. Looking forward to seeing your 'way with clay.' Has Jeremiah 18 become more meaningful? I like God's way with your clay. He's making you and your family into such a beautiful creation, the kind suitable for noble purposes (2 Tim 2.20, 21).
    Hey, remember Kip's clay creation? Was it at one time called Claymation? Then just Clay? I think of it as joy with freedom and abandon. I still like to wear the Clay T-shirt.
    Love, Dad