I spent close to 20 years working in downtown Atlanta, which means I traveled comatose on 1-75 along with thousands of other miserable commuters. Rain, sunshine and snow did not deter us from our required path. Oh, occasional road ice brought a reprieve, but not often enough.
Now my math may be a bit off, but assuming I drove to my office at least 15 days each month, with an average commute time of three hours per day, I spent about 1.3 years in my car inhaling exhaust fumes and listening to really bad talk radio. By the time I arrived home each evening, I had very little energy left for enjoying the local scene. And activities I enjoyed in my youth, like Christmas shopping, became pure drudgery. Yes, as the years progressed, I was reduced to an automaton who seldom veered from her prescribed course.
Imagine my delight at now being retired and having the time to learn about Woodstock and surrounding communities. Who knew there were so many fun things to do around here? I am just now realizing how many opportunities exist, right in our immediate area, for residents. And that includes busy moms who need a break.
That brings me to this week’s Great Escape idea!
I recently visited Lisa DeLosh, owner of Earth, Paint and Fire in Woodstock. This paint-it-yourself pottery and art studio has much to offer, and it is the perfect destination for you and a friend or two to spend a couple of hours being creative and enjoying each other’s’ company.
Earth, Paint and Fire shelves hundreds of pieces of pottery. Simply choose a piece, grab a seat and let your inner artist emerge. Lisa and her staff are available for suggestions and tips. They also stock stencils, sponges, and other items to enhance your design. Idea books and photographs are on hand for inspiration.
Designing and painting your pottery piece takes about two hours, depending on size and your artistry. You then leave the painted piece, which will be fired in the kiln. Your finished pottery is ready for pick-up in about a week.
The cost? You only pay for the piece of pottery. There is no additional charge for use of the studio, paint, design supplies or the firing. Pottery pieces start at about $6 for small items and run upward from there.
Earth, Paint and Fire also offers hot glass fusion. You select a glass project such as a magnet, pendant, plate, bowl or vase. Decide on your design and colors, and then paint your glass. Leave the piece for firing and slumping aka molding. Costs vary according to the size of your project.
Walk-ins are welcome and no experience is necessary. And Earth, Paint and Fire will be glad to host your group or party. Just contact the studio to schedule and plan your event.
Of course, the studio also hosts regular events for which you can sign up. Dish-Dine-Paint & Wine! is a pottery painting event held the first Friday and third Thursday of each month from 6:30 until 9:30 p.m. Reservations are required. Snacks are provided; just bring your own wine, opener and cup.
Adult canvas painting classes are now available each month at the studio. Lisa said her staff will help you enhance your canvas painting with glass elements. The cost is $25 for these two hour sessions, and includes all painting and glass supplies. The next classes are scheduled for Nov. 3 and Nov. 17 at 7 p.m.
And don’t miss the 8th Annual Holiday Wine & Paint Night Dec. 8 at 6:30 p.m. Choose a candy dish or mug to paint and enjoy complimentary wine, all for $25. Reservations are required.
Earth, Paint and Fire is where you’ll find me over the coming weeks. After all, what better way to honor those on my holiday gift list than to give them something hand-painted by me, flaws and all? This year, Christmas shopping will not be drudgery, thanks to this unique, local studio.