July 1, 2007




Here are a few of my favorite online haunts:
[This is the site I visit to fantasize about living in Toronto again, which is almost every single day during the winter]

Jonathan Cainer's Zodiac Forecasts
[This is where I visit in the morning, when I need a positive spin on things past, present and future.]

Living Local
[This is where I go to see what Canadians are up to, sometimes I even buy things from the businesses listed there.]

Environment Canada Weather
[This is the site I visit every morning, and before every road trip during the winter]

This is Canada Day weekend. Yesterday Attila and I managed to get away for an afternoon, a reward for the months spent repairing the north side of the house. Although it rained intermittently, and the wind was brisk and cold, we had a wonderful, comfortable time on a three-hour boat tour of the Thirty Thousand Islands, designated by the United Nations as a Biosphere Reserve, on the east coast of Georgian Bay.

The Island Queen sails out of Parry Sound Harbour. We chose the longer afternoon “nature” tour, which focuses on the natural beauty of Georgian Bay, the islands, the flora and the fauna. An additional shorter cruise runs through July and August that focuses on areas where wealth owns and creates recreational built form along the shoreline; a tour of how the other .000001% live. The opulence of the natural world will suffice for us.

However, I did find the shoreline at Depot Harbour of interest, although little built form remains, as I have documented a portion of the genealogical history of that area. As I child I heard much of Depot Harbour, as it was quite a going concern during my grandparent’s day and very near one of the original land grants taken by my ancestors.

Today it is sunny and cool. Already Attila has a load of his laundry hung to dry, and I have a crockpot full of granola quietly doing its thing on the kitchen counter. It is the day we will begin the creation of my “studio”. After some deliberation we have decided to convert the downstairs bedroom into a studio. On the north side of the house, it has a large window with lots of natural light, and it will be fairly easy to create a venting system at one end of the room for the kiln.

In order to create the studio we must first move the sofa bed and linen cupboard out into the family room. The bookcases will go back to back to form a non-structural wall to give those sleeping on the sofa bed some privacy. Attila will move all this furniture over the course of the day. I will vacuum and wash floors and walls as we go.

Once the studio room is cleared of bedroom furniture, we will move in an old dining table, a melamine worktable (rescued from the landfill years ago) and some old stained shelving for materials and greenware. There will be no sink in my studio. I am using colour-coded buckets of water to clean tools and my hands of clay. The clay will eventually settle to the bottom of the bucket, where I can reclaim it for future use. There will be two buckets for each type of clay that I use. I plan on working very slowly and keeping the studio very clean by sponging down all surfaces frequently and cleaning as I go. This is easier with hand building than it would be with a potter’s wheel in the studio. The sinks and drains in the house will not be used for my pottery pursuits.

We plan on spending as little as possible to get me going. My plastic buckets came from The Dollar Store, as did some of my tools such as plastic tablecloths, plastic measuring spoons and a plastic measuring cup. My MDF boards for wedging and bats were scraps from a lumberyard, cut to size by Attila. But, where quality is important I have cut no corners. I purchased reliable wet clay and glazes from Tucker’s Pottery, and will continue to do so until my skills have developed sufficiently to make my own glazes. I also splurged on a good quality turntable on which to work.

An added bonus of moving all this furniture to and fro is that we are inspired and able to purge unused items. After sorting and purging items for more than a year, it is hard to believe so much remains. There are now two garbage bags full to the brim and several boxes of items for the church bazaar.

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Worldly Distractions

Thirty Thousand Island shoreline Ontario Canada
An island shoreline from the deck of the Island Queen, Georgian Bay, Ontario, Canada

On the Screen
The Alamo
starring Billy Bob Thornton

A few clouds
Wind N 7km/h
Humidity 63%
Dewpoint 7°C
Pressure 102.42 kPa
Visibility 14.0 km
Ceiling unlimited

Page by Page: A Woman's Journal
by Maggie Turner

Canadian Maggie Turner writes and publishes poetry, photography, and a personal journal online. Her work reflects the current way of life in Canada, embracing Canada's past, present, and future in a unique portrayal of everyday life. Maggie's voice is one of the many that actively depict the rich diversity of Canadian culture.

Photography: "a term which comes from the Greek words photos (light) and graphos (drawing). A photograph is made with a camera by exposing film to light in order to create a negative. The negative is then used in the darkroom to print a photograph (positive) onto light-sensitive paper.
Source: University of Arizona Glossary

Poetry: "a form of speech or writing that harmonizes the music of its language with its subject. To read a great poem is to bring out the perfect marriage of its sound and thought in a silent or voiced performance. At least from the time of Aristotle's Poetics, drama was conceived of as a species of poetry."
Source: Creative Studios

Journal: " "Though a journal may be many things - a treasury, a storehouse, a jewelry box, a laboratory, a drafting board, a collector's cabinet, a snapshot album, a history, a travelogue..., a letter to oneself - it has some definable characteristics. It is a record, an entry-book, kept regularly, though not necessarily daily.... Some (entries) will be nearly illegible, written in the dark in the middle of the night.... Not only is it a record for oneself, but of oneself. Every memorable journal, any successful journal, is honest. Nothing sham, phony, false...." (Dorothy Lambert from Ken Macrorie's book, Writing to be Read )
A journal is a way to keep track of your thoughts about what you read... as well as what you did on any given day."
Source: Journal Writing

A Blog is an online journal created by server side software, often hosted by a commercial interest.

"The term "weblog" was coined by Jorn Barger[4] on 17 December 1997. The short form, "blog," was coined by Peter Merholz, who jokingly broke the word weblog into the phrase we blog in the sidebar of his blog in April or May 1999.[5][6][7] Shortly thereafter, Evan Williams at Pyra Labs used "blog" as both a noun and verb ("to blog," meaning "to edit one's weblog or to post to one's weblog") and devised the term "blogger" in connection with Pyra Labs' Blogger product, leading to the popularization of the terms."

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