Talking Bread Loaves PART 3

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Blossoms are everywhere. It is spring in Victoria and it is Friday. What can possibly be better than this?

PART 3 and the conclusion of “Talking Bread Loaves” If you missed part one you can read part it  here and part two here.

After about an hour I help mom punch the bread dough down and she makes the loaves and sets them to rise for a second time. This is when the magic really begins. Mom starts adding “just the right sticks” of wood to the stove and every so often she places her arm in the oven. Each time she checks, I ask “Does it feel right yet?” I’m amazed that she can tell when the temperature is “right” to put the loaves in to bake. Soon she is carefully placing four loaves into the oven. I find something to do at the kitchen table so I don’t miss what I count on happening next.

I have enough time to draw two horse pictures, one barn picture and part of a chicken coop before mom opens the oven door. She lifts a loaf carefully up to her ear. I stand breathlessly beside her.

Looking intently at the frown on her face I ask “what did it say mom? What did it say?”

In a deep gravelly voice she answers “put me back in.” and just a little louder over my giggles, she continues “I’m not ready yet.”

Each loaf is lifted up in turn. In sing-song notes the next loaf responds “well, I think I’m cooked” followed by its close companion who complains “don’t be in such a hurry. I’m raw in the middle.” Then the fourth one replies with a shiver “burrrrr, close the oven door, it’s getting cold in here.”

As the first loaves finish cooking, more wood is added to the stove and the next four loaves are again carefully placed in the oven. All eight loaves have something to say when mom lifted them to her ear. There wasn’t a silent loaf in the bunch.

Sprout Question: What makes you giggle that child-belly-laugh when you imagine it?

The very best of  Friday to you and I hope you have a wonderful weekend… and take some time out for a good giggle. It does wonders for releasing creative energy.

© 2010 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Talking Bread Loaves PART 2

“Talking Bread Loaves” PART 2 and artist Stacy Ericson

Sketch of Terrill Welch by Stacy Ericson

One of my first interactions with Stacy Ericson was when she asked “tweet friends” to volunteer for her to sketch. Of course, I put my “tweet” up right away. Above is the delightful result.  Below part two of “Talking Bread Loaves” you will find more about Stacy and her creative talents as an artist, poet, and photographer.

Now Continuing with part two of “Talking Bread Loaves” If you missed the first part you can read it here.

Next, a little flour goes into the yeast mixture. My mother’s arms flexed with the strain of stirring the long wooden spoon around and around the bowl. Her other arm holds the bowl at an angle to make the stirring easier. She stops occasionally to add more flour and as she does, she looks at me with one eye, making sure I don’t have my hands in the open flour container. Or worse, I’ve made finger roads through the crater of flour that she has ready on the table.

When she feels that the dough is thick enough to pour she lifts the large bowl up with one arm and tips it into the floor crater. Using the other arm, she maneuvers the wooden spoon, scrapping the leftover dough out as quickly as she can. Timing is critical. She needs to put down the bowl and be able to fold the flour into the warm dough before it runs over the edge of the flour barrier.

This was my chance. I sink my hands into the soft flour and as I do this I shout “Oh look mom! It is coming over the edge!” and then I place my little palms along the area where the dough is about to overflow. Mom’s strong hands slide in between mine and the flour and the dough. With a graceful swoop she begins kneading the flour in. When just “the right amount of flour” has been added, she “lets it rest” while washing out the bowl. I am given the gigantic bowl “to grease” while she kneads the dough. Then she placed the smooth, elastic ball of dough back into the greased bowl and sets it aside in a warm place “away from drafts” to rise until it has doubled in size.

Read the Conclusion PART 3 here

Sprout Question: When do you experience a feeling of awe?

Bonus: Stacy Ericson is unpretentious and engaging. She quietly, in cumulative small engagements, warms your heart. There is a vivacious vibrancy to Stacy that rings through into her art, photography and her writing. Her perception is somewhat like that of an arrow’s quiver. We are caught in the blur yet we know she has captured the intended target – beautifully. Following are a few of Stacy’s images and reflections.

Stair Shadow by Stacy Ericson

“The dead and the discarded, dry wisps, and fallow fields, industrial textures, and rural detritus are transformed by a distillation into line and light.”

Elise chicken looking by Stacy Ericson

“Images make me happy. Getting what I want out of a photo, or getting close to it, to me is simply joyful.”

Confusion of the Watchmaker by Stacy Ericson

“I want to experiment with many forms, but I do have a passion for blur — often even photographs that seem to be in focus capture light differently when the camera itself is in movement.”

Sun by Stacy Ericson

“I have a feeling that the static object holds a life-force within that is revealed with the introduction of a random element of moving time. I prefer a slight point of focus to a completely abstract blend of colors in my blurs photos.”

Who is Stacy Ericson?

Stacy Ericson’s arrived late to the visual arts. After growing up in a household devoted to the theater, her educational background includes the study of ancient languages, Etruscan culture, and World Religion. The onset of a genetic disease began a slide into the visual arts, which began to gel while experimenting with the photographic technique of intentional blur, captured through camera movement. Recently Stacy began a small portrait business, and is currently working with both digital SLR and the iPhone camera.

After the Haitian crisis Stacy began The Images without Borders project with Laura Bergerol. This innovative non-profit makes art prints from world class photographers available at a low cost to the public with all the proceeds benefiting Doctor’s without Borders.

© 2010 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada