Sunday, July 24, 2011

a summer day

This summer day I got dressed, grabbed my favorite apron and went to the plum tree.
This California native plum is in my mother's backyard and its forty feet tall. I set my basket in the crook of a limb and got to picking.
There are thousands of plums this year. More than I've ever seen in the twenty years I've been picking them.
I filled my basket and picked some for a friend and went to deliver. We ended up visiting for an hour. We talked about cooking, and books and even canning.
Home again with my basket, and some fresh geraniums from mom's garden.
Don't they look just like rosebuds? After the flowers fade I plant them and they just root so well. I've got rosebud geraniums all over the garden.
I decided to make a clafouti. My first one. I mixed it up and put in in the oven.
I did a little housework.
Well, I washed the dishes at least!
Emptied the kiln
The clafouti was done so I tried a piece. I sifted powdered sugar over it just like they do in France.
I thought it would be more like cake, but it was almost like a fruit custard. I guess I liked it, though.
I've still got an awful lot of plums. And the tree is laden still!
So I ordered a new canning book. I've heard good things about this. I'll let you know.
Might be plum jam appearing on my shelves soon.
hope you are having a wonderful summer

Sunday, July 10, 2011

gold dust

I've always wanted to add gold embellishments to my pottery. I think growing up in California exposes you to gold fever. So there is a brush stroke here and there on the porcelain cups above. Can you see it on the tips of the bird's wings?

Cup backs. These are slab built porcelain.

I panned for gold when I was ten. I remember the little particles of gold dust glinting in the sun.

This is my husband's ancestors from Sutter Creek , California. Gold Rush country.

I visited this house and met Gramps standing up in back on the right. He was 97at the time. I was 20. They had chickens coming in and out of the kitchen and an ancient orchard out the back. The floorboards creaked like a chorus of frogs. I loved it there.
They came out in the 1840's not to strike it rich in mining, but in logging. All those miners needed wood for houses when they struck the mother lode.

The dog's name was Sampson.

An old plate with gold paint next to a beaker.

These are porcelain, so they are light.

My plans for these cups. The instuctions for using the gold are:

Immaculate brush only used for gold. Apply gold to finished piece in its own firing. These pieces were fired three times.Wipe down a glazed piece with rubbing alchohol.

Cleaning brush in the special solution to keep the brush supple. It goes on red, so its easy to see your strokes.

Fire at 018. Which is about 1377 degrees.
A vase shape where the flowers spill out nicely.
my first bud vase!
I'm hoping there is a pink butterfly out there somewhere.
Also did a couple of cups the old school way!



Animals who garden

Animals who garden
Donkey with green paw