Handmade Adventures | Jenny W. Green

Featured Blog | August 2013

Dear Friends:

Earlier this Summer, I attended a long weekend retreat at Laity Lodge down in Leakey, Texas. Among other wonderful things like canoeing down the Frio River and hearing Andi Ashworth speak on vocation, I had the opportunity to take a step-by-step painting class with my Art House North friends Sara Groves and Allison Gaskins. None of us would consider ourselves painters, but after two hours of instruction and layering paint on our canvases, we walked away delighted by our (somewhat real looking) birch tree forests. No, they weren't masterpieces, but the time together was wonderful as we talked about what life was teaching us and laughed at our inability to paint tree shadows. There is certainly a time and a place for perfecting your creative craft, but there is also a time to get outside of your comfort zone and try something new.

Just this last weekend, I was reminded again how much fun it is to try new things in the kitchen. For a while now, I've been intending to recreate an amazing pork tostada my husband I had enjoyed on our honeymoon. After a fruitless internet search for the recipe, I finally pulled out the good old Crock-Pot, gathered ingredients at the store, and set out to crack the code on this fusion of Hawaiian, Mexican, and Asian flavors. Eight hours later, the pork was tender and ready and we had chopped and diced and sliced our hearts out, combining four different recipes for each layer of the tostada. It felt similar to the painting class, adding layer by layer of colors and flavors. First the guacamole, then the shredded slow-roasted pork topped with the Asian coleslaw and pineapple-jalapeño relish. It tasted delicious. Even if it wasn't exactly the same as we remembered, it was a wonderful process of learning something new together.

Thinking about these recent experiences of painting and cooking makes me even more excited about our new Handmade series starting later this month. I've been dreaming for a while about providing opportunities to enjoy the pleasure of creating something with our own hands, and I'm so thrilled to have you learn more about cooking, hospitality, floral, and table design from friends who have been an inspiration to me along the way. If you've been dragging your heels on coming to an Art House event because you don't think that you're artsy enough, these are the events for you. It can be so intimidating to try something new, but I hope our Handmade series will allow you to get in touch with your creativity, learn a new skill, and meet cool people in the process. With only 10 spots per class, tickets are going fast, so reserve your spot soon! 

Hope to see you at Handmade or another one of our upcoming events! 

- Jenny Green, Executive Director