As the title reflects, I feel I have been Chasing Rainbows to no avail. I needed someplace or thing to make me feel more grounded and accountable. Somewhere I can record my plans and efforts as I work towards meeting goals of increasing my Polymer Clay knowledge, skills, and abilities while working towards a healthier me, in mind, body, and soul. A place that reminds me that everything has the possibility to improve with effort (I might even catch part of one of those Rainbows, someday).

Meeting my Challenge.

Posted by Sue C | Posted on Monday, August 09, 2010 | Posted in

Hi, yes, I know, it's been awhile since I've been on here.  I told you in the beginning that I never was able to keep a diary going, either, but here I am again.  Without going into any details this past year has been a hard one for me (mentally, physically, and emotionally) and I often cope with stress by withdrawing from everything and everybody (kind of go into hibernation mode).  I thought I had finally gotten past it in January with my blogging and clay etc. but apparently not, as I'm still struggling.  However, enough of that and on to my challenge.

Mr. C had a long weekend this past weekend and we decided to take another short camping trip.  We ended up at Whittington Woods Campground in the Rend Lake area in Southern IL.  It's beautiful here, although very hot.  The campground is nice, although I'd like a bigger "yard" for the picnic table etc.

The particular site we're at also doesn't have a fire ring, but it's really too hot for a fire anyway, we'll save that for our trip in September.  We've seen deer, wild turkeys, a small snapping turtle (right at our trailer) and of all things, there are poultry here, and we've been visited by turkeys and chickens, LOL.

                                                                Here's Mr. C checking out the poultry, LOL.

The pool is lovely, very nice and clean and just the right temperature.  It's an interesting pool, as it has steps in and is 2-3 ft all the way to the rope, then about a foot past the rope there is a steep slope to the rest of the pool which is 5 ft.  It turns out to be the perfect depth for me to exercise my legs, hips and knees without it hurting too badly (but that's one of those stories I'm not dwelling on, remember???).

Little Snuffles has gotten a bit bigger than I had hoped and isn't nearly as "cute" as she once was, but she's still the love of my life and such an intelligent, spoiled rotten pup you've never seen.  She still can't bear to be left out of anything:  Here she is swimming in our pool at home:    Yes, she has a life jacket, the pool's 4 ft deep and she's only about a foot tall, LOL.

She obviously likes riding on the float better than actually working at the swimming part!!!  

Snuffy enjoys watching the world go by out our "living room" windows when we're camping.
So, as we were packing up, getting ready to go, I was choosing what clay to take (other than brand new packs, which I have built in).  Remember, I have a mini polymer clay studio in my fifth wheel trailer.  Did I show you the pictures of the new clay shelves Mr. C built in for me?  Just in case I didn't, here is a picture of them.  There was this little area right between the cabinet and wall that was wasted space, so he built me these little shelves and we found baskets that fit just perfectly and I can keep an inventory of clay in them for use during our campting trips.  What fun, clay at my fingertips.
Anyway, back to my challenge.  It was just a personal challenge.  As any clay workers know, we have lots of "scrap" clay to deal with.  I'm such an anal person, I can't bear to throw clay out or just have ugly mud, so all my "scrap" clay is turned into new colors and is considered remnants, not scrap.  I have about 100 lbs of remants, but they are hard to use, as I don't "see them" and there are too many small amounts of slightly different colors.  So I decided I needed to consolidate them to make larger amounts of fewer colors.  While deciding how to go about that though, I also found several containers of partial canes or parts of canes I started once upon a time and didn't finish.  So, I decided to bring them all (the odds and ends, not the 100 plus lbs) with me on this short trip and use as many as I possibly could.  I'm not done yet, but decided to take a break to write this.

So, this weekend, I have made the following canes from mostly clay remants.  I would guess each one uses roughly 75% remnant clay with the other 25% being new (to brighten a color or make different shading or the transluscent, obviously has to be fresh clay, LOL).

This first one, I actually made at home, didn't like it as it didn't reduce well, so scrapped it into 4 lbs of green remnants, LOL and so, I re did it.

 I wanted a painted lady butterfly on a fern and the second one is just perfect.  It was huge though and I thought I'd never get it reduced.

It reduced beautifully and will have double uses, as it is just a cane and will also be part of my poker chip for the Clay Carnival in Las Vegas in November.  I can't wait, Clay Carnival is soooo much fun, if you possibly can, come join us.

Then I made a couple of flowers, one I made up and the others are the standard roses I learned when I first started doing Polymer Clay Canes.  The roses with leaves also have extra leaf canes to match them. 

While I'm making all these beautiful canes, Mr. C is busily updating my eBay store with all the canes I've made recently.  Here he hard at work, be sure to check out the store to see how well he's done.  
 If I have enough extra time today, I'll be making some "remnant kaleidoscope" canes just to use up some smaller odds and ends.  I have such fun with these remnant canes, as I never know what I'll have until it's completed.  

So, I'll close for now so I can get busy on those remnant canes.  I want to go swimming today, but it's pretty overcast, so don't know if we'll go or not.  See you later, hope you're all having a wonderful summer.  

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