Friendly Fill-Ins

This is a fun meme co-hosted by 15 and Meowing and Four-Legged Furballs. Be sure to visit and join in the fun!

Friday_Fill-In_BadgeHere are the fill-ins:

  1. Happiness is __________________________.
  1. Ten years ago, I ______________________.
  1. __________________ is the best medicine.
  1. Most people don’t know that I _________.


Here are my responses:

Happiness is time that doesn’t have me going in 50 different directions at the same time, not able to catch a breath. Happiness is time spent watching the birds, squirrels, and frogs. Happiness is being able to sleep through the night without 400 calls from my bladder. Happiness is Jesus, family, and home.

Ten years ago, I …was almost 43. I was living with tumors, but didn’t know it yet. I (we) still had 3 children living at home. I believe that I was driving a green Ford Windstar. I was getting used to yet another new normal.

They say “laughter is the best medicine”. Sometimes it is; sometimes it is not appropriate for the situation.

Most people don’t know that I descended from a line of potters. My Gunter ancestors were potters in Edgefield County, South Carolina. They were versed in the alkaline glazing technique and carried that technique with them to the northeastern parts of Georgia, where they trained other potters in the technique.

I want to learn their craft and have been researching all that I can about it. Maybe THIS is what I am meant to do, wake up this generations-old craft of our ancestors. I can’t wait to see where this goes!

Our daughter Maggie has a new blog for her furbaby Martha. You can find it at: Martha’s Daily Mews

Our Marine needs your help. Please see New York or Bust.

Have a blessed weekend, y’all!

Image source: Pixabay


About Suzanne Gunter McClendon

I am a South Carolina native, but have been living on the Texas Gulf Coast for 14 years now. David and I have been married for 34 years. Our children are grown. Some are here at home, others are out in the big world doing their "thing". I enjoy genealogy, reading, writing, photography, digital art, fiber arts, cooking and much, much more.
This entry was posted in 2018, Friendly Fill-Ins, Memes. Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to Friendly Fill-Ins

  1. Suzanne,

    I have a friend who does pottery. She got into this several years ago and she does a nice job. We count ourselves blessed that she passed to us some of her works. Not going into a zillion different directions equals happiness in my book, too. Also, like you watching nature fills me with happiness. You and I think alike on many things. Have a good weekend. I’ll check out your daughter’s blog shortly, too.

    Curious as a Cathy

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Cathy, on all counts. She will appreciate your visit, I know.
      What kind of pottery does your friend do? Do you know what motivated her to start making pottery?

      Nothing quite beats nature for calming the soul, does it? 🙂

      Have a blessed weekend, my friend!


  2. foguth says:

    I used to love pottery! Even had my own kiln, but sold it in 2004, when we ‘sold the farm’ and moved aboard our new catamaran. In some ways, I miss it, but it’s a bit too warm in Florida for me to toy with and serious thoughts of getting back into it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Cool! What kind of things did you make? Was it for fun or for profit? How’d you do?

      It gets really hot here in Texas, too. But, I figure I’m going to be hot anyway, I may as well have fun while I sweat. 🙂

      What kind of kiln did you have? I have no clue what kind to look for once I get to that point. For starters, I will see if there is a school around with a kiln that I can use, and see how it goes. Do you have any suggestions for one that has never done this before?

      Have a blessed weekend. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • foguth says:

        I had a Bailey with a removable extra ring, which was removable for smaller batches. I made a lot of Christmas ornaments and mugs… I began this toasty hobby when my husband was stationed in Fairbanks, Alaska, but the heat of living farther South made me lose interest.
        Before you invest in one, realize that during the initial heating phase, a lot of gases get emitted, so it needs to be in a well-ventilated area.
        Do you have a local arts group that has one, who you could talk to? Better yet, is there a group that would pool their resources and share equipment? Unless you’re planning on making a business out of this, having your own kiln, etc. is a huge investment.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Thank you for this information. I have thought about it becoming a business, but that really depends on how it goes. If it flops to start with, then I definitely won’t pursue it as a business, just maybe as a hobby, a way to feel connected to my forefathers. I can’t afford to make a big investment in anything at this point. If I see that it is going to work out, I can deal with that part of it then.

          Do you have any pictures of what you made? I’d love to see them if you do.

          Regarding the gases that get emitted, I have a room separate from the main house (other side of carport) with two windows that can be opened (an AC is in the third one, but it doesn’t work very well). Does the potter need to stay in the room while it is heating, or can it be unattended during the time gas emission is an issue? I don’t need to add any further hardship on my lungs, that is for sure.

          We talked to the local junior college art department and they don’t have anything pottery related. There is an arts building near the river, but I don’t know if it is still in business or not since the flood that got the town after Hurricane Harvey last year. I haven’t seen anyone other than the bridge workers over there. There are arts places all over the place in Houston metro, but that is forever from here, especially with the freeway destruction/construction going on. People up there do have kilns and classes, etc.

          Liked by 1 person

          • foguth says:

            As I said, I sold my kiln in 2004, so the new ones might have a different operating system, but the way mine worked was thatI would block the lid open a crack so the rising heat would carry the gases up and out the crack, The heating process takes hours and no, you don’t need to stay there, but once the gases are out, you do need to carefully (don’t burn yourself) remove the prop and close the lid.
            BTW, that sounds like and ideal place for your shop – are they any windows you could open for cross-ventilation?
            Different clays requite different heat. The hottest I did was for porcelain on the initial fire – the first fire is always the hottest, each subsequent one is a bit cooler. Thus, IF you add decals and/or gold trim. that is the coolest one. Basically, you begin with the hottest to set the clay – you also need the clay as dry as possible prior to heating because if there is moisture in it, it will expand and could explode — this is something to be avoided.
            Generally, the second firing is to set your glaze, so it’s a bit cooler – in general, glaze is sort of a coating your item in a thin glass film – if you have a couple minutes, this clip shows how to load a kiln for the glaze firing (this is the trickiest one, because molten glaze can bond, if the items are touching)

            IF you do food items, make sure your use food-safe glaze!
            I don’t know if I have photos or old pottery projects, but I made a lot of mugs and Christmas ornaments. I would clean the mold marks off the dry clay (scotchbrite pads often work well) fire the dry clay, then underpaint, features – once that was dry, I’d put on a transparent food-safe glaze. Dry then do the last firing (unless a decal was used, though I didn’t do much with them).
            As per firing the actual kiln, my old one had ‘cones’ which were various hardnesses, so they melted are various temperatures – As noted above, I also needed to initially leave my lid cracked to emit gases. In this video, the newer version is programable and there are vent holes built in:

            Liked by 1 person

          • Thanks, Jeanne, for all of this information. I will save this and will also look at the clips you linked to.

            There are only the three windows in that room, but there are two doors that are opposite one of the windows, so they could be opened for cross-ventilation. The only problem to overcome with leaving the doors open is the neighborhood kitties. With the one door, maybe that issue could be fixed with a screen door. I don’t think that would be possible with the other door, though.

            Thanks for all of the information that you have shared with me. I appreciate it very much. Have a blessed weekend. 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

          • foguth says:

            Once the gases begin to get smelly, I suspect visiting kittens will leave.

            Liked by 1 person

          • I would hope so, but hopefully they won’t be in there for any part of it. I’d hate to think of them getting in there and getting burned. Have a blessed evening.

            Liked by 1 person

  3. Cheryl says:

    Oh…I know what you mean about sleeping thru the night without my bladder waking me up!!! Have a great weekend!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. L.M.G. Miller says:

    Thank you for joining in on the Fill-Ins! Sometimes happiness really is just being able to enjoy the little things and our family and faith, without having to worry about anything else. I think it is so wonderful that you know so much about your ancestors, and that you want to take up their craft. Pottery has always intrigued me so much, though I have tried it and have no skill in it at all. Have a blessed day!

    -Lorianne (Four-Legged Furballs)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you. I have been studying my family’s history since I was about 14 years old…so nearly 40 years now. I love every minute of it, even the ancestor stories that induce migraines. 🙂

      I haven’t yet tried pottery, but am anxious to get started with it. First things first, though. I need to read enough about it so that I don’t blow something up right off the bat. haha

      What happened that makes you think you have no skill in pottery?

      I hope that you have a blessed day, too. 🙂


  5. Comedy Plus says:

    We have a neighbor that does pottery. I’ve watched her work. Fascinating.

    You’re very young. I didn’t know how young.

    Have a fabulous day filled with love and laughter. ♥

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, but I sure don’t feel young. Almost 53 feels older than I expected it to. 🙂
      What type of pottery does your neighbor do? Art pottery or utilitarian pottery? Does she have a website I could look at?
      Thank you. I hope that you have a day blessed with laughter and love, too. 🙂


  6. Happiness is Jesus — i could not have said it better.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. 15andmeowing says:

    Thank you for participating, I always enjoy your answers. My bladder calls me several times a night.I did not know you came from a line of potters. That is cool, I think you should pursue this. Have a nice weekend! XO

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Ellen. I’m sorry that your bladder interrupts your sleep, too.
      Thanks also for the encouragement to pursue pottery. Who knows, maybe I could make something with a kitty on it. 🙂
      Have a blessed weekend.


  8. ghostmmnc says:

    So cool to know what your ancestors did with the pottery making. I’ve never tried anything like that, but we do have a few places here where you can go paint something and get it fired. Not the same as making it yourself, though. Hope you can someday get going on making your own. Sounds fun. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Barbara. 🙂 I think it is cool that your town has this opportunity available. I haven’t been able to find any place to do the firing here in our town. So, bare minimum, it means traveling 30+ miles to get to a kiln. Thanks for the encouragement. 🙂 Have a blessed night.

      Liked by 1 person

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