We visited the Rainbow Centre at Woodford today to participate in a clay-making workshop. Local artist Sue Amirsardari provided the supplies and tutelage to talk the participating children through the steps to making a cute frog.

Rainbow Centre, Woodford, October 2012
The Rainbow Centre is a community hall run by volunteers and offering items for sale and small meeting spaces for locals who want to get together.

The Rainbow Centre emits a really nice vibe. Although it is managed by volunteers, it doesn’t seem like any one person feels proprietorial over the facilities. We were immediately made welcome, and the girls found things to do that they liked.

Aisha playing on her kipi, October 2012
Aisha opts to listen to stories on her kipi instead of participating in the activity. Although we have come a long way to mould the clay, I need to respect her wishes and give her the space she needs to develop her own sense of creativity when she is ready.

Calista playing on the phone, October 2012
Calista, too, is uninterested in the clay but plays a math game on my phone instead.

Delaney in the sand-pit, Woodford, October 2012
Delaney is ecstatic to be outside, playing in the sand.

Sue was offering the workshop today to allow school-going kids to participate. It’s still school holidays for children in Queensland.

Clay workshop with Sue Amirsardari, Woodford, October 2012
The tables are surrounded by children excited by the opportunity to play with clay under the guidance of Sue.

Brioni at the clay workshop with Sue Amirsardari, Woodford, October 2012
Brioni is allotted a small amount of modelling clay, and she waits for the instructions on how to section it into the pieces she needs.

Brioni at the clay workshop with Sue Amirsardari, Woodford, October 2012
Carefully working separate pieces, Brioni fashions a little frog.

Brioni at the clay workshop with Sue Amirsardari, Woodford, October 2012
Once her frog is completed, Brioni accessorises it with a hat, a cat and a broomstick.

Once they had finished their frogs, most of the children left the centre. Brioni asked Sue if she could make another one. Sue later said that her favourite moment was when Brioni told her she was putting a coat on her frog as she thought he was cold. “I tried to say ‘Hang on, you can’t thread his arms through that piece of clay — they will fall off!’ but I stopped myself and sat back and watched as she carefully pushed two holes through the clay unfolded his arms and put a coat on him.”

Brioni at the clay workshop with Sue Amirsardari, Woodford, October 2012
With a bit of time left over, Sue allows Brioni to make a second frog and talks her through the necessary steps.

Denise Curry and Lauren Fisher, Woodford, October 2012
While we watch our children participating in the clay workshop, Denise works over my dreadlocks, tightening the new growth.

Afterwards, Denise invited us back her house so the kids could play some more. It was lovely to give the kids some more time to get to know each other, and this was the first opportunity I had to spend time getting to know Denise’s husband Andrew.

Playing in the dam, Kilcoy, October 2012
Delaney and Zan try out some mudslinging. (It all sticks.)

Brioni and Lilyrose swimming in the dam, October 2012
Lilyrose and Brioni commandeer a kickboard and use it as a floating aid as they swim all around the dam.

Woodford is rapidly becoming one of our favourite destinations. The wonderful community mindset, the lovely, creative people and the beautiful countryside is calling us back to visit again very soon!

Thank you to Luisa Ayma who shared her photos with me.