Ceramic Painting

Opaque 1

Opaque 2

Opaque 3

My daughter and I took ceramic painting class when she was ten years old. We both enjoyed this activity.

When choosing a green ware that is a ceramic piece just came out of the first firing from a mode with the clay color. It is still fragile and breakable. We need to clean the rough edges with bladed tools and water. The next step is to paint it with the paint for green ware. After painting, the green ware goes through the second firing. After the second firing, the piece becomes solid. The glaze will be applied and the piece goes through the third firing to have a shiny colored look.

Another way to do it is to purchase the bisque which is cleaned and solid through the second firing. All we have to do is to use a different paint specifically for bisque. We paint the colors, and do the glazing. Then the piece goes through one more firing in the kiln before its completion. The dry brush technique requires different kind of paint, doesn’t need glaze or the third firing.

My daughter and I carry on this hobby separately. I like to paint angels and fairies. When I paint the wings or certain areas in white, I have to be sure to use opaque white that is nontransparent, and covers any unexpected spots of other colors.

Opaque 4

Daily Prompt: Opaque

52 Weeks of Thankfulness – Week 5

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This is the 52 Weeks of Thankfulness – Week 5 at Haddon Musings

My husband has been retired for six months. He is happy to spend more time at home. I’m thankful that we could do more things together. We have been keeping up our workout schedule at the gym three times a week in the morning. On the same gym day, we go to Laguna Lake where he runs and I walk in the afternoon. In the evening, we try to play board game together once a week. I’m very good at board games, so far I’m winning! This night we played Chinese checkers. I played on green and he played on blue. I reached the destination across the board to his side. He came to my side with two steps before all the checkers were in. ♥♥

week 4a

52weeks

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Tuesday Photo Challenge – Look Forward

We left on Friday, March 24, from southern California to visit our daughter and son-in-law in Portland, Oregon. We just came back yesterday, March 28.  We had a wonderful family time together.

The rain in Portland is scattered. Upon our arrival on Friday, after check-in to the hotel, we went out for lunch. During lunch time, there was pouring rain. We didn’t bring the umbrella with us, and worried that we might be soaking wet walking back to the hotel. Yet by the time we were done with lunch, the sun was peeking out, the rain stopped. After being in Portland on a regular basis, I can’t help but notice that the local people don’t wear raincoats, or use umbrellas.

Initially we were going to go to the Tulip Festival. After finding out that the tulips were not in bloom yet, we decided to cancel our trip. Furthermore, the map showed that there were 10 incidents on the freeway on a rainy Saturday.

The weekend with Mercy and Will was wonderful. Mercy and I enjoy playing table games. We played Mastermind on both Saturday and Sunday afternoons. Then the four of us played Tickets to Ride on both Evenings. We are thrilled to play games together because we are competitive and compatible. It makes the playing more exciting and enjoyable!

Sunday evening was our second time making homemade pizza using tiles in the oven.  Mercy and Will are vegetarian. I am quasi-vegetarian just because of the way I was brought up. I eat vegetables more than meat. My husband like pepperoni and extra cheese on his. Each of us created our own toppings. It was the best pizza in town because it was exactly the way we liked it!

Now that my husband is retired, we can go visit Mercy and Will anytime, and stay as long as we want. My husband was so happy that he didn’t have to worry about going to work upon returning home. We look forward to our frequent visit of Mercy and Will in the future! In fact, the next trip is on Mother’s Day weekend!

Dutch Goes the Photo Tuesday Photo Challenge – Forward

Weekly Photo Challenge – Dense Fog

Fog in snow 1

My husband’s birthday is in early January. He likes to go north, snowy places for his birthday. One year, we decided to visit my sister and her family in Vancouver B.C. Canada for New Year’s Eve and New Year. We were planning to go to Whistler, a Skiing Resort. Upon checking out the weather report; we found out there was raining and heavy snow. Our car was not prepared to drive in snow. My brother-in-law decided to take us to a nearby mountain for snowboarding. When we got there, the mountain presented to us a heavy and dense fog. There was a big crowd doing snowboarding. They might find snowboarding in a dense fog challenging. It was my husband’s first time doing snowboarding. A real challenge to him for sure. My niece and nephew had a lot of fun. They snowboarded to the bottom. Then used the cable if needed, to help them get up to the top of the mountain, and went again. For me, I was a good spectator and a good cheerleader!

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Dense

Weekly Photo Challenge – Wish

Portland

My husband and I live in southern California. My daughter and her husband live in Portland Oregon. There is 1,000 miles in distance. We visit each other several times a year and go places together. My “wish” or “desire” has been that we live closer together. We could just hop over for dinner. We could have a game night until late, and still not too far away to get home. We could go for a walk and talk about everyday life. With technology, there’s no limit to send a text, get on the phone, or skype. Yet, there is nothing compare to being close by and able to do thing spontaneously.

Photos: Portland airport, Japanese Garden OR, Laguna Beach CA, Multnomah Fall, OR

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Laguna Beach 1

Munlmah fall 2

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Wish

A Love Letter

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Dear Mercy,

I’m so proud to have you as my daughter. You gave meaning to my life! For more than ten years when you were young, I overlooked my disappointments and emotional turmoil. All I could see was your beautiful smile. It gave me strength to move my feet, one step at a time.

You delighted me with your intelligence, and made your learning fun. You were like a sponge, soaked in every new learning as fast as it came. I referred you as book gobbler as you read books after books in no time. You were placed in GATE (Gifted and Talented Education) program at third grade. You had so much confidence. When we learned new things together, I said, “I can’t do it!” You said, “Mom, you can’t do it, if you believe you can!” I had to agree with you.

You were so kind and generous with your friends. When you had friends coming for “sleep over,” you sent them off the next day, with a whole bunch of your toys.

I was sad when we were isolated from each other for five long years. I only saw you once. It was during the time you were learning how to drive. I couldn’t call you because all the phone numbers were disconnected. The only contact I had was an email address. You couldn’t feel free to write.

The day we were reunited after you turned eighteen, was the most joyous day in my life. I wanted to be with you so much, even just sitting in the room while you did your college work or did things with your friends. I was just content that we were in each other’s life.

It touched my heart when you were growing into a kind, sensitive, considerate, helpful, tenderhearted, and compassionate young lady.

I enjoyed our hour-long conversation on the phone. I appreciated your trust and shared your feelings, concerns, or everyday life with me. You were not a little girl anymore. I shared my experience, my suggestions, but always encouraged you to make your own choices. My saying was always, “Don’t rush, listen and follow your heart!” In that, I believed that God would speak to your heart and helped you make the right choices.

I had so much fun doing ceramic painting with you just like we did when you were young. You know that I like to play table games with you.

I was thankful for your desire to serve the community and found a job that allowed you to help people in need. You could have worked for big financial firms and made good money. But your heart was, and is, with people. I’m so proud of you.

I’m grateful for God’s guidance in your life and bringing a loving husband to you. You both have a desire to learn and to grow. You both keep a healthy individual life by spending time with the gals and guys respectfully. I’m amazed of the closeness and helpfulness of your group of friends. Most of all, you also learn to be a sensitive spouse to each other and let your love and bonding grow. Your journey may have ups and downs but it is beautiful.

I’m privileged to have both you and Will in our life. I give thanks to God to keep us as a loving family. I always look forward to spending time with you both, either have you come to visit, or going to visit you. We’ll see you very soon, in less than a month.

I love you so very much!

Mom

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Weekly Photo Challenge – A Good Match, Kidney Transplant

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In the summer of 2008, my husband Lynton, my daughter Mercy, her boyfriend (now husband) Will, and I wanted to attend my nephew’s wedding in Hong Kong. That was the year when the Summer Olympic was held in China.  The airfares going to Hong Kong from US were higher than usual due to people traveled to Beijing through Hong Kong. After searching, I found a Thailand tour via Hong Kong, and we could stay in Hong Kong at any length of time.

We went to Hong Kong and attended my nephew’s beautiful wedding. Then we had a five-day tour in Thailand. When the tour was over, we came back to US via Hong Kong. There was a couple hours layover.

While we were waiting in the Hong Kong airport, I gave a call to my sister Yolanda. To my surprise, there was worrisome news. While we were in Thailand, my brother-in-law Patrick went to work on the train as usual. He got on the train, but had an intuition that he should get off the train in the next station, and he did. As soon as he got off, he felt dizzy and fainted. Upon arriving the Emergency Room, and attended by a doctor, he was diagnosed with kidney failure.

I felt sad for the news. The whole family and the church family prayed for Patrick’s healing. Somehow Patrick and Yolanda had known about the possibility for quite some time.  The doctor put Patrick on routine dialysis at the hospital as outpatient service. Eventually he learned to do it by himself at home. He was making good adjustment.

After assessing the chances and distance, he registered in the medical system in China to get a kidney donation. His blood type is O. He could only receive kidney with blood type O, whereas any blood types could accept blood type O kidney. He has less chance to get a same blood type kidney. He was told that the waiting time was from two to ten years.

The four basic blood types are A, B, AB and O. (Type O is the most common blood type and anyone of any blood type can accept type O.)

Patrick accepted the fact the he had to wait for a long time to get a kidney donation. He quit his job to take care of himself. Yolanda was very supportive. During this time, their children stayed in Vancouver, B.C. by themselves in order to finished school.

After six months waiting, Patrick received a phone call from China; let him know that there was a kidney donation for him, and that he had to go right away for the transplant. Yolanda was not able to go with him without advanced notice to her government job. Patrick’s sister went with him, taking the night train to China. Next day, Yolanda was able to take time off from work and joined Patrick. She stayed with him for the 10 days while Patrick went through testing, transplant, and observation. Apparently the donor and the receiver were a Good Match. Patrick’s body didn’t show any sign of rejection of the new kidney.

They then went back to Hong Kong to be cared by their doctor. He was making good progress slowly but surely. We thank God that it was a miracle for him to get a kidney donation within six month. It was a miracle that it was a Good Match of the donor and receiver.

To fast forward the story, Patrick eventual went back to work part time, and then transitioned to full time. He is now working a combination of a part time church pastor, and part time Headquarter staff for his church. God is merciful. His loving kindness is with us forever!

Weekly Photo Challenge: A Good Match