Updated: May 6, 2021
For 6 years I have packed up my home and my studio in its various configurations and moved it. I don't recommend this to anyone, let alone anyone that has a typical household along with more than twenty buckets of glaze, anywhere from 1-14 wheels, 2 kilns, x-number of pounds of clay, tools, equipment, etc., etc., etc. Yes, I am crazy. Only crazy enough to love my family enough to move to follow my husband's work and keep us under one roof and crazy enough to love my pottery almost as much as my family.
What began as a relocation to an intended permanent new job and community in eastern Utah from the center of Utah, turned into 6 additional moves while landing us in our current home right back in central Utah. From 2014 up to last summer we followed work, need, and desire to 7 different homes in 5 different communities in 2 different states. See, crazy. That's what I said.
During these years of craziness we have grown and found joy in each community amongst some amazing people. My little studio has ebbed and flowed but has always been a huge part of my life. Just over a year ago, in our 5th of the 7th homes we ran into many issues with having a working studio on our property and I was worn out. We decided to move once again and I decided to downsize to just one wheel and kiln and get rid of much of the equipment I had acquired to run my small teaching studio. I was going to go to work and just be a hobby potter on the side. I don't regret the decision to close it all down but I was kidding myself as I took a full-time job and thought I could set all of it aside to pursue a career unrelated to pottery. Enter the COVID-19 pandemic and a complete shift in our lives, our work and our focus. Who hasn't had a major shift over the course of the last year?
We were in the middle of busy Utah County with these ideas that worked when the world is normal. When the world takes a nose dive you have to adjust. I had always wanted to get back to my little rural central Utah community when we came back to the state but it just wasn't feasible with my husband's career that was based in the busier Salt Lake Valley. The pandemic sent everyone home to work. My job was fairly superficial and although I was able to work from home my job description had to change to maintain my viability. I didn't like the direction it was going to take. I began rethinking my decision to pursue a career outside of pottery. My husband also began working from home and the realization that his could actually work in a post-pandemic world started us thinking. That wonderful little community we left several years before was now a real possibility.
So here we are. It's been a wild ride. I wouldn't change any of it. Yes, it was taxing emotionally, physically, in every way, really. Yes, my studio was pared down to bare bones and I have to rebuild. Yes, I am starting over with my studio and that is daunting. Yes, I miss many of my people I have collected in our "wanderings." Again, I wouldn't change any of it. I have grown in a way I did not know possible. I have met people and forged friendships that have and will bless the rest of my life. I have been stretched, tried and tested and I have grown because of it. My faith is stronger. My understanding of what really matters has deepened. My family, especially my youngest boys have had experiences that have helped them developed resilience. My husband and I are closer than ever and have moved to a new level of love and understanding in our relationship. After all, when you go through challenges together and make it, you are stronger. All these changes, adjustments and analyzing has allowed me to take a step back and grow as a ceramic artist.
Back to Utah loaded with 90% of our belongings
The little trailer with the last of our randomness