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Just living is not enough. One must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower. ~Hans Christian Anderson

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Monday, March 2, 2009

Dirty Story

It's a dirty story but someone has to tell it. I was tumbling some of my finished pieces last night and when I took them out, they were blackened, like they had been dipped in LOS. I paniced and wondered to myself, "Self, did you patina a piece and forget to rinse it off before you put it in the tumbler?" I didn't think so but in my normal state of SADD,(senior attention deficit disorder:>}) I wouldn't guarantee anything. I decided to tumble another piece and see if it happened again. Sure enough, the second piece looked just the same. I knew I was going to be attending a design class today at the Lapidary Shop so decided not to panic. After all, when I go to the shop to work on something I always have more than enough advisors available:>}. After the session, I asked the main instructor if I'd done the unpardonable and was it irreversible. I had visions in my head of needing to dispose of the shot due to contamination and it is expensive to purchase and more expensive to ship so I surely didn't want that to be the case. He kind of gave me that ole SEG and asked me what color my water was. I told him it was pretty dirty and the shot was black. Ah hah he said. You haven't cleaned your shot lately have you? Nope, no one told me I had to do that......never heard of cleaning the shot. He told me to go home and either order some Shot Cleaner Fluid (from Rio) or just mix up a solution of ammonia and let the shot soak for awhile and that should take care of the problemo......I came home and followed his instructions and sure enough, the water turned black from the gunk attached to the shot and the shot is now nice and shiny. I love those experts who always seem to bail us out of trouble. I guess those are the best kinds of lessons because I will always wash my shot once a week or so to make sure this doesn't happen to me again.

On another note the design class was wonderful and I can't wait until Wednesday and Thursday when I take my PMC class. I've had some packages of PMC in my studio for months because I was afraid to open the packages. It is so expensive I was afraid I'd screw it up and waste the clay. I'm told that the main thing you have to worry about is letting it dry out so I will be very careful. Will keep you posted. My husband is back home after the weekend in Phoenix and very happy to have a steak dinner and sleep in his own bed for a change.....Gotta love them.

On another note, I came home from my class to find this little visitor on my patio, having lunch no less - yuk. In case you can't tell, it is a beautiful hawk.


  1. Thanks for the heads up on cleaning the shot. I haven't even thought about that. I always dump it into a strainer and rinse it off and let it dry..but I didn't think to clean it.


  2. Wow Sally. I'm amazed that you were able to get such a close up shot of that hawk! What a cooperative little creature. Hawks are sooo kewl. Native Americans believe that birds are messengers from the spirit world. If that's true... then I would venture to guess that hawks may be messangers of important news.

  3. I've only cleaned my shot with hot water and the dawn dishsoap I use in my tumbler and I never had a problem with my pieces turning black...I've been using my shot for the last two years. Also, once I have it rinsed off I always, always lay my shot out on a hand towel flat to let it dry.

  4. Thanks everyone for checking out my blog. I found additional info today on the Beaducation.com website. She has a section called "tips" and has an article on the tumbler. She says you can just use coke - yest the soft drink. Haven't tried it yet but will the next time. I wasn't good about rinsing the shot and even left it in the tumbler in water in between uses so I'm not surprised I got "caught" so to speak. Anyway, now I know. By the way, that is a great website for those of you who haven't found it yet.

    djamesdesigns - I happened to see the hawk before it saw me and was able to get those pictures through my TINTED sliding door. I was amazed myself and thrilled to get it. I love the bird and will treasure that picture. Unfortunately (my DH says fortunately) the pesky dove is no longer - survival of the fittest I guess. Thanks again and have a great day.

  5. very nice photos of the hawk!! nature is a wonderful thing and it's always exciting when you can get an "inside" peek...

    good tips on the shot, I don't have a tumbler yet but I'm thinking it will be one of my next purchases!!

    can I ask what does DH mean?? for the hubby? just curious?? seen it on autumnleaves as well.
    have a great day!

  6. Hi Fashionably - thanks for stopping by. DH means Dear Husband:>} I'm glad you enjoyed the pictures, it was quite exciting for me too. Have a great week

  7. ahhh, that makes sense..(DH)you know Im a blond so somethings go right over my head....LOL was racking my brain trying to think of what that meant.. thanks for explaining, now I won't be left in the dark! :)


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