• Nick Aunkst


I absolutely love to have "firsts." I enjoy trying new activities and foods. I have, for as long as I can remember wanted to try and "throw" clay. Before you ask the answer is no, not because of the movie Ghost :) For Christmas, Nick and I like to get each other an experience or activity gift. It helps us try something new and sometimes we get to check something off of our bucket list! Whatever the gift ends up being we enjoy the time together. This year Nick got me a gift card to throw clay! We went to a local art studio in downtown Utica called Four Elements. Man Hue Duong, a local artist and yoga teacher, was our guide for the night. We have worked with Man in other capacities and were thrilled to have her as our instructor. Every year Nick and I have the privilege of teaching In Bloom's Yoga Teachers in training anatomy. That is how we connected with Man in the past. After Man's lesson and demonstration it was our turn to throw. I was so excited. I selected my piece of clay. As I walked over to the wheel to begin, I took note of the cold temperature and smooth texture of the clay. I smashed the clay onto the center of the wheel as I had been instructed. I had a big smile as my foot hit the peddle and the wheel began to spin. I could feel the vibration of the peddle and found the hum it made soothing. I began to shape the clay. Applying pressure, lifting, pulling. Finding a rhythm and learning balance in a new way. If I pushed too hard the clay would melt beneath my hands. If I spun the wheel too quickly I would lose control and end up with a big ol' "oops". I was hooked. I found the whole process to be meditative in a way, hyper focused on what was in front of me. I was very present. Nick and I each made a few pieces and decided to keep two a piece! Our art sits proudly in our home. You can find them in our office, dining room and yoga area. We have little reminders around our house of that happy memory.

We had a great time and truly enjoyed our experience with Man and Four Elements. If anyone has ever wanted to try and throw, I highly recommend it!

Happy Monday! Dr. Ashley Moody

This week's reflection:

  • What is on my bucket list?

  • When is the last time I tried something new?

  • Is there something outside of my normal routine I could do today to improve the quality of my life today?

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