Views of the Neighborhood – When It’s Hot

Heat Index

There is nothing like Summer in South Texas. The above heat index map was from yesterday at 11:30 AM. We live under the right side of the  0 in the number 103 F. (That’s 39.444 degrees C) The forecasted high could go to 110.

So what does one do to beat the heat around here? Let me tell you the beach and pools are way too hot.

Library

How about a trip to the library?

Library

Hmm. Boarded door and not accepting donations? I would say they are closed.

Marine Science Center

I know. A stroll through the Marie Science Educational Center.

Science Center

Does the word, “temporarily” mean like in four or five minutes they will open? Probably not.

Wintons

We could head over to the candy shop. Of course, it costs about 1000 calories an hour to stay cool there.

Fire it ceramics

Now we are talking. How about painting a ceramic and having it fired? Let’s go inside.

Fire It Ceramics

The first thing you see is the pickup rack. This is where the clients pick up their ceramics after they have been fired. You can see some waiting for their owners.

This is Michelle Shook, the owner of Fire It Ceramics. She just moved into a new location after Hurricane Harvey severely damaged her previous shop. The fish she is getting ready to wrap was started by a client before the hurricane hit. It survived in the shop and is being picked up today.

This is a shot of the color rack. As you can see, there are about 280 choices to decorate your piece.

This wall chart gives the client an idea of what their finish will look like after it is fired. So what you do is select your color and then go to this display and check to see if what you have chosen will come out the way you hope. Michelle says, “You don’t have to know how to paint from an artistic sense to do ceramics. All you do is apply paint.”

Here are the workplaces. While we were there, a group was having a birthday. Their group was about ten, so two tables were put together.

Here are some of the ceramics on display. You choose your ceramic and then paint it.

Here are some more.

A supply table and some T-shirts waiting for design

More choices on what to paint.

Here is Michelle again with her large kiln. She had five kilns working at her previous location. She temporarily has two that survived the hurricane and more on order.

Of course, there is always some idiot willing to stick their head into a cut-out and pay considerable sums to get possession of the data file with the picture.

80 comments

  1. I recall that kind of heat from the five years I lived just outside Dubai in the late 70s and early 80s. There were days when 110°F would have been considered relatively cool!

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  2. It’s nice to see someone who truly enjoys their job. We’ve been hot since early spring and so dry. Happy Sunday!

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    1. You can tell Michelle loves her work.

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  3. Gwen Plano · ·

    It’s been really hot (and humid) in our area as well. Good to see folks out and about, some even nervy enough to get their photo taken in a grass skirt. 😀 Enjoy the day, John, and thanks for the journey.

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    1. Thank you, Gwen. Have a super Sunday.

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  4. Creativity keeps the brain moving forward, eh, John? I’m sure Michelle enjoyed the free publicity too!!

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    1. Yes. She was most gracious. Thanks, GP

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  5. I saw the large ceramic ice cream cone in the shop. Didn’t that give you an idea, John? Of course, at those temps, I guess you wouldn’t make it back to the car with a cone.

    It’s sad to see some places haven’t recovered yet from Harvey.

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    1. Some places have a long way to go for sure, Dan. Thanks.

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  6. We sometimes get that kind of heat here in India. I could turn on the air conditioning but it costs an arm and a leg. I make due with fans on top speed. 🙂 — Suzanne

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    1. Oh my. Sounds like a long summer.

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      1. It lasts about 3 1/2 months. 🙂 — Suzanne

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      2. About the same as here. 😀

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  7. Fun Sunday adventure, John! I’ve never done ceramics, but they were really popular when I was a “tween.” So it was fun to visit this with you. Great creative thinking — I would never have associated something with “fire” in the process as a way to keep cool.
    Sad to see so many things still waiting to make their comeback after Harvey though…

    We’re (some areas anyway) flooding after yesterday’s rain, and a full week of it in the forecast. But at least it’s keeping the temperature down. Where’s that “happy medium”? I guess that only applies to well paid psychics… 😉 Hugs!

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    1. Thank you, Teagan. Yes it looks like rain for you for the next week. I would take it off your hands but can’t convince the big Texas high to move on. Stay dry. Hugs.

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  8. What a great idea for a business! Nice to see them succeeding after the hurricane.

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    1. Yes. Michelle is a very nice person.

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  9. Good mornin, Joh,
    It saddens me to see how many places down there are still closed. 😦 That place to do your own ceramics looks quite interesting, though. But with (y)our heat wave, we could possibly fire ceramics just on the asphalt of their parking lot. 😀
    Anyway: enjoy the day and stay cool,
    Pit

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    1. Thanks Pit. I think you could almost use the parking lot. 😀

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      1. At least for frying eggs, eh?! 😀

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  10. Looks like a lot of fun. There used to be a place like that around here, but it’s long gone. Was always great for kid birthdays.

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    1. I think that is the biggest use. Thanks, Charles.

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  11. It is one of the hottest Texas summers I can remember, John. When we got in the car yesterday after an adventure at the Magnolia Silos in Waco, it showed to be 115. Wow! That’s just plain HOT! Gret tour of the ceramic shop and what a fun way to beat the heat.

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    1. Thank you, Jan. Waco is one of the hottest places on the planet. My daughter graduated from Baylor and visits there were always sweaty.

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  12. Enjoyed the tour of the ceramics shop – a nifty idea! I hope Michelle’s business does well. Enjoy your Sunday, John.

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    1. I’m sure she will do well.

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  13. 1,000 calories an hour isn’t bad . . in my opinion. Of course, it means I have to leave the candy shop eventually. After which I am going to feel like a beached whale . . so maybe ceramics are the way to go.
    Cool shop John!

    And you cannot help yourself with those cut-outs, can you?

    Peace and more agreeable weather

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    1. Hi. My name’s John and I am a cut out co-holic. It has been 23 hours since I last shoved my head into a cutout.

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      1. Hello John!
        Now please remember, we are all friends here. We’ve seen a lot, been through a lot . . . of cut outs, ourselves. You share what you’re comfortable sharing . . .

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      2. I need to start spending time with people who are not so obsessed with cut-outs. Maybe take up with some booze drinkers. 😀

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      3. That a way to be more constructive with your addiction, John!

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      4. I agree. Thanks, Marc.

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  14. I think I would opt for the ceramics shop over the candy shop, that is unless they sell ice cream, too. 103 is way too hot for me. We’ve been in the 90’s mostly the past month, but today we are at 76 degrees – a bit cool for July.

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    1. Whoa. 76 is downright chilly. Thanks, Michelle.

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      1. Too chilly for July, John.

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  15. Great place, dear John! However to fire ceramics…at 39 °C…it ‘s only for ironmen!

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    1. Ironmen indeed. Thanks, Maria.

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  16. Earlier this season, we had some of that misery. It’s been a strange year weather-wise. Sorry y’all are sweltering right now. Perhaps we can send you a little cold front (that is, if we can get one to blow through here!)

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    1. Well we compplain a lot. Think winter and me in shorts.

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  17. Rough weather. Do you suppose they could throw a pizza in the kiln with my ceramics?

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    1. Sure. You want pepperoni on that?

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      1. Mushrooms, sausage, onion?

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  18. I had no idea you were in my neck of the woods! I’m in SE Texas (just to the right of the 101). We are also still recovering from Harvey’s visit, but ours was from the extensive flooding instead of the hurricane winds and tornadoes.

    I enjoyed the tour of the ceramic shop; wish we had one like it. My town’s library is situated high enough it didn’t get flooded, but a larger town nearby was not as lucky. I hope yours opens again soon.

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    1. Thank you, Barb. I have found that folks who have not been through a hurricane don’t realize how long it takes to recover. No news yet on when the library will open. I hope soo too. Thanks for the comment. 😀

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  19. About Thursday, our NWS office put out this forecast: “Hot until further notice.” That about does it, I’d say. They’ve managed to have a few additional words to say about it all, but the truth is — it’s summer in Texas. You’re right about the beach, though. I’d take firing ceramics over building a sand castle any day!

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    1. I would be worried that the sand would fuse into something permanent. Thanks, Linda.

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  20. It’s been hotter than Hades in the Montreal area as well. We have the addition of the “humidex” – Last week, temps were at about 35C (95F) but add the humidex and it felt like 41 (105.8F) – and I work in black pants, 3/4 sleeves and a bleeping tie (though we were blessedly allowed to remove it) on a terrace. Just sayin’ – after a shift, I would be more than willing to sacrifice 1000 calories to cool off. Thankfully I have an itty-bitty pool and air-conditioning at home so…

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    1. My goodness. The black pant thing must turn your lower self into a heat generator. The pool sounds like a perfect offset to the daytime sweatfest. Thanks for the laugh, Dale. :-D.

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      1. Glad I provided 😉
        When your shirt is stuck to your back as you work.. yuck!

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      2. I always wondered about the heat when my arm pit curcles met in the middle of my chest.

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      3. Hahaha!!! That’s pretty much all of our fate lately…

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  21. 280 choices …wow 🙂
    hope it was chilly inside haha

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    1. Yes it was. Thanks, Ray

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  22. Madam Mim · ·

    And here I am moaning about 31C in London 😂

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    1. Watch out for sunburn. I think your drizzle will return soon.

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      1. Madam Mim · ·

        It better do!! I miss rain and miserable grey skies. And jumpers. And being cold. But it could always be worse, the Texas heat sounds unbearable. How do people do it?!

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      2. We start very young and build up an immunity. 😀

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  23. Now that’s a great way to beat the heat. I want that fish!!

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  24. Our temps were down to mid 80s this weekend – an awesome temporary reprieve, but back to mid 90s this week. I took the boys to painting places like this when they were young – always a good time.

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    1. Yep it was fun for us to take the grandkids.

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  25. What a great shop. I’m glad she’s getting back up and running. I had ceramic phase back in the 90’s. I love my pieces. I saw a few pieces in her greenware I liked. I may have to find a shop here again. The one I was using closed in the late 90’s. 😭

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    1. I know when we did it, we had lots of fun.

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  26. It’s been hot here too, except we don’t have the humidity. Finally got some (a lot) of rain today. Stay cool!

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    1. I would welcome some rain. Thanks, Rhonda.

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  27. What a great post, John, except for the heat. It’s been hot here, too, and typically, our weather is pretty mild. And without a/c, it gets yucky inside. We’re surviving, though. Anyway, the candy cost made me smile, and how fun to paint a ceramic. I think it’s been about 100 years since I’ve done that. 🙂

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    1. Don’t you still get the 55 degree nights? We always loved that in Sonoma and Marin.

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      1. The nights have cooled down, which is nice, but the house stays hot into the wee early morning hours. 🙂

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      2. We used to throw all the windows open to create a cross ventilation. We always had a breeze it seemed. 🙂

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      3. Things have unfortunately changed. These heat waves are more frequent with no cooling off inside, until the weather actually cools during the day. Another topic for another post. 😊

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      4. Must be Trump’s fault.

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