Back in June I had no summer plans. This worried me a bit. With a 13 and 9 year old, the risk of not having anything planned could mean that the temptation to spend the summer on the iPod was a possible reality.
Aside from getting through every episode of "Family Ties" late into the evenings, (who didn't love that show?) we're now hitting mid-July, and I have to say that this has been an INCREDIBLE summer thus far!
Both the kids and I have spent a nice chunk of time this summer at Stray Cat Studio in Beaver Falls.
I've suggested pottery to my kids in the past, but it wasn't until a friend set up a "Ladies Night Out" for a group of us, that I really got a literal hands-on look at how much my kids would love hand-building and wheel-throwing.
Along with being a full pottery studio, Stray Cat also boasts an incredible store full of artisan's creations: pottery, jewelry, scarves, woodwork, and more - all one of a kind and unique pieces made by artists in and around Western, PA.
My friends and I enjoyed a hand-building class, created just for our night out, and received fantastic, detailed, and patient instruction from Tim, the studio Manager. After building the pieces, we returned just over a week later to glaze. We brought munchies, wine, and open minds as we all dove into something new.
My daughter, 13, enjoyed a week-long wheel-throwing class, and found a new hobby that she enjoys. She recently returned to glaze, and next week we get to see the results of her hard work.
But what really impressed me is that the studio agreed to create an impromptu wheel-building class for my son and two of his friends, as one wasn't being offered for his age-group.
Stray Cat Studio is a super friendly place, and have made my kids feel so very welcomed. And valued. They treat them like the artists they are.
And I have had the satisfaction of seeing them get their hands dirty, while loving every minute of it.
To hear them say, "Can we just head over the Stray Cat from time to time and make something new?" is music to my ears. And yes. Yes, they can head over and work with the clay when a camp or class isn't in session - for a nominal fee. Please check out their website and give them a call!!! They'd love to have you in a class, a camp, or set up a special session with your group.
We've got clay under our nails and are proud of it!!!
Joline Pinto Atkins, an actress who also uses the web as her world-wide stage, can also be found writing at The Cuppa Jo, Beaver County Times online as the Health and Wellness blogger, and is the founder of Daily Fast Fuel. She is wife to one (phew - that's good to know) and mother of two amazing children, aged 13 and 9, who are both named after authors. Passionate about fitness, she is an Independent Team Beachbody Coach and sweats out any daily angst by exercising at home, longs for good books, is a redeemed coffee addict, and won't share popcorn with anyone. Even her own family. Follow Joline on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest!