Pink and Turquoise

I love this picture. It looks more like a painting to me, than the photograph that it is. Pink and turquoise rocks, hopping bird in similar colors:



Our Planet

our planet
we live on her
our bodies are made of her
through the air
we breath
we drink
our foods which are birthed from depths of her flesh
she will take us into her
as food
to nurture her life
we are the future of our planet
whether this be in deed
or the dust of our bones
just as she is now made of the dust of our ancestors
the trees, the stones
those who come before us

Inspired by Sunday Scribblings subject: the future of the planet


Wisdom of the Four Winds

There are days when I love to draw a card from one of the many wisdom decks I have. Often it will be in the morning with a lit candle and a cup of tea. This is a lovely thing to do with a friend as well, inspiring deep and magical conversation.

One of my favorite decks is called the Wisdom of the Four Winds. It was created by Barry Brailsford in New Zealand. The images on the cards are from the land of Aotearoa (New Zealand). I was there three years ago, and had the deep pleasure of meeting and listening to Barry's story telling for a few days with The School Down Under.

This deck of cards comes with a wonderful book. After pulling a card (s) you look in the book, you'll find a poem about the nature 'being' that you chose. Then there will be a page or two that tells how the creature lives in its land, followed by a writing about the gift for you in choosing this card, closing with another poem for you to find inspiration in. I have found there is much to learn and consider about the gift in each card (s).


Teeny Morel/Wrinkles

Illustration Friday's promt: Wrinkles

Last spring, walking in the forest, I found this tiny creature, maybe 3/4" tall!
Folks love morels, they are tasty to the extreme. Pricey to the max. I loved this one because it was pristine, alive, radiating light and life.


Ancient Ancestors

Rocks of the earth
sacred beings
energy held in crystalline form
stable reminders
of a depth to explore

This post is inspired by Two for Tuesdays.


Composing Art on a song

A lady lives in the woods
enjoying the seasons
Does she have to wonder
ponder and
the reason
she doodles a
sun kissing an ocean
For when spring comes
it stays but one weekend
and returns to the unreasonable
of freezing

Inspired by Sunday Scribblings: Compose
I have just reposted this image, I am learning how to scan art and have it color true, sorry for putting you through my learning process.


Reduce Reuse Recycle

Inspire Me Thursday just listed their muse for the week, which is the title of this post. It feels fun to celebrate earth day with art. Three things come to mind that I would like to share for this subject.

1) I was wandering through the woods on Earth Day two years ago and a duck in a startled state flew from its resting place at the base of a tree. Since it flew away, in my curiosity I stepped close to see what a duck was doing there and found it's nest. Now this is a wonderful example of reuse and recycle!

2) Last week a friend, Mister T, made me a desk for my workspace, I completely consider this a piece of art! It is a wonderful piece that fits beautifully in my tiny cabin. The legs came from trees on his land. The supporting sticks we found while walking along the river, they were chopped down by beavers !!! And the top I found at what we lovingly call the Olney Mall, which is the green boxes (dumpsters) near the tiny town of Olney. This is where us country folk take our garbage, we have no trash pick up. Someone had thrown a door in the bin because there was a hole in it, but the wood has beautiful grain! I snagged it.

3) My passion is photography, yet recently dabbling in drawing, illustration and painting has occurred. This little painting was colored with red wine, coffee, watercolors, and ink pen. I figure wine and coffee stain cloths just fine, so I used them as paint. They are soft colors, the sphere is wine, the wings and some of the bubbles above are coffee.

Growing up as a teenager, my mother began writing on the walls of our house. She told us that anyone who had something "worth" saying was welcome to do the same. I only remember one thing I wrote "wear it out and use it up, make it do or do without". I am not sure where I heard this saying but it was meaningful to me. Ecology was a word being used often those days and I took great joy in being creative in making things I had or found fill the need of the moment.




I was maybe 35 years of age and had the inspiration to drive up the Big Sur coast of California and sleep in the wild. I filled my back pack with journal, book, bits of food and water along with a one person tent, sleeping bag and water filter. Twas a gorgeous day and I felt excitement in the journey. After three hours of driving I arrived at the trail head. Donning my pack I headed up the hillside which was spotted with majestic oak trees and covered with green and golden grasses. When the breeze would stir, the grass would dance in a wavelike motion, so lovely that I would stop and take it in as though it were the breath that kept my body alive. It was a hot day and I took my time getting to my destination. A small camp with a spring of water that began in a small pool and traveled on as a creek. Shedding my clothing, thankful to have this place to myself I slipped into the pool marveling at the sunlight streaming through the trees. So lovely to have a bath to wash off the days dust and cool in the midst of the heat. Surely this is heaven!

Dinner was lovely and light a mix of carrot, sweet red pepper, avocado, cheese and crackers. Food tastes so delicious when I carry my belongings on my back and am calling the earth my home. I set up the tent, shaking out my sleeping bag, crawled up on a large boulder and awaited the sinking sun to make way for the twinkling of the stars. Sitting there, for the first time I heard the sounds of the day dim and fade away as new unseen sounds of night surrounded me and came to life. It was the unseen part that rattled me. I was perfectly fine sitting on that boulder. Nothing but beauty around me. BUT what was that sound and that other sound? I felt fear fill my veins and stir my imagination. I seriously questioned my decision to wander off alone! Over and over I would tell myself “is anything bad happening to you?” “no”. Still the fear would not vanish. All the reality of the fact that I was fine had no effect on my imagination. I slid into my tent made of paper thin nylon, zipping closed the door and pretended I was safe and sound and fell asleep.

Waking in the morning, taking in the beauty of this land I remembered my time of unjustified fear. Some how I made a pact with myself to face my fears in the wild. Over the years I have journeyed out a number of times alone, for one to five nights. All wonderful experiences. When the fear arose I would chat with myself about how I was just fine, no danger at hand until I could get myself present to reality. I found that when I could be present the fear would melt away into the nothingness from which it rose. Slowly developing new muscles for being presence.

This writing was inspired while visiting and enjoying Greenish Ladie's Blog. She has a post inspired by a blog called Sunday Scribblings. These folks give us a prompt to write about, this weeks prompt was "fearless" which brought back long ago memories. Sunday Scribblings is a wonderful event to participate in ! Thank you.


Butterflies, News and Mushrooms

This past weekend we had weather that I would call "stunning"! I don't think I have felt 70 degrees since last fall. Wow and blue skies, lovely. I made my way up to Lake McDonald and had a long leisurely walk, did tai chi on the beach and took pictures! I saw my first butterflies of the season:

The Headwaters conservation group of Montana had a photo contest, silent and live photography auction at at the O'Shaughnessy Center last week. This event was a fundraiser. I donated an image of ice crystals, which are some of my favorite little beings! It was a lovely evening. My phone rang a few nights later with news that I had won 1st place! This is really fun for me. Here is the image that I entered:

Yesterday's hike was amongst a quiet day, but for the call of the Sandhill crane family as it flew through the distant sky, calling in their prehistoric sounding song! Me standing there wishing they would fly right overhead! My hike for the most part was cloudy and gray, sun streaking through for moments here and there. Me finding my thoughts in the form of words to tell my story.

I found the woods interesting to walk 'on'. I would say the earth is one third bare, two thirds covered with snow. The surface of the snow was firm from the cold night, yet fragile under the surface from the warmth of days, so with every step I would sink. "Will it be three inches or one foot or more" was my thought with EVERY step. I felt like I was on a stair master in a gym stepping out of each and every hole. Yep that was exercise! I found myself choosing barren earth where I could find it, whether it be a ring of earth around a tree or the prints of an moose that had recently walked by. I find for the most part it is easier to walk in another's steps, than to make new ones myself. A friend, Charlie once told me something like "in the summer the critters make trails for us and it is only natural that we do this for them in the deep winter snow". This past winter I noted that sometimes I walked in the wolves tracks and sometimes they walked in mine.
I thought the above little guys were tree ears, but I don't think so, if you know what they are let me know, please.

Added note: I asked my mushroom teacher Larry Evans and host of The Fungal Jungal about the mushrooms (above)he says: Peziza or a Discina, both are brownish cup shaped fungi.

I found two different kinds of mushrooms today! New tiny mosses and buds on plants that have been dormant for months! I love seeing evidence of spring. Mushrooms in particular excite me. They are such interesting little creatures. pure magic. Always I feel as though I have met a wee fairy!

Me thinks this one is a false morel, but hey I don't know much about mushrooms so I asked Larry Evans, he says yes this is Gyromitra gigas:


The Day After...

After yesterdays exciting adventure with the hawk, I went to explore the crime scene of Hawk kills and eats Duck. There were a number of animal tracks, a moose, canada geese and deer. Otherwise I found two bloody bones and so many feathers glued to the surface of the melting frozen creek. A pretty clean crime scene actually. Not much went to waste. What was yesterdays snow bank is now creek, for the days are warming. Evidence of winter in the form of snow melts becoming nourishment for Springs reign.

My mornings walk had me languishing in the softness of the earth under my snow boots. Peeling off my light down jacket, I realized "at last spring is here". Perhaps next time I go out, I will be donning hiking boots, storing away my big hefty snow boots that have cared for me all these winter months. Too my great excitement I came upon my first forest mushroom and then another group which looked to me like an orange colored lichen until I took a photo and looked up close!

Later joined a friend in a drive to Polson Montana. The day was the hottest this year, in the 60's. We had blue skies and wide open landscape, just lovely!
Flathead River:
Saw my first spring wildflower, the Yellow bell:
This last picture is not the best quality, shooting into the sun. Still I could not resist sharing this with you, as this is SO Montana:


A Hawks Feast

 This morning is a blue skied sunny day, lovely. The snow still firm enough to walk on due to the nights freeze. Wandering through the woods, pepper spray on hip, for we have a bear that has left its winter den. Two cameras with me hoping to find ice in geometric form on the surface of the creek. Yet instead of heading to the creek I turn and wander down the long meadow. Soon this meadow will be a shallow lake made of melted snow. A bird sanctuary, though not the sort of sanctuary that is safe, this mornings journey was proof of this. On the edge of a snow bank next to a meandering creek was a Northern Goshawk, perched on its kill, an orange footed duck. Is it one of the ducks that has been living in my pond? As sad as this thought makes me, I felt no sadness watching the hawk ripping feather and flesh from it's kill. Often in my wanderings I come across evidence of some animal tracks, a scuffle or kill; always wondering what had occurred. Wishing that I could have seen the wild in action. Today I saw plenty of action.

Tis the next day and I have an Addendum to this post: I have awoken this morning, to find a pair of mallards swimming in my ponds. They are entirely lively and making plenty of noise. Yesterday I never saw them and I wondered if that hawk had eaten them or one of them. I can barely say how empty the ponds felt to me without them there . Yea, I feel so happy.


Day at the Auction

Snow falls the size of corn flakes, I wonder if this is where the cereal got its name? Being from Southern California this thought previously never occurred to me. If I were in S. Ca. I would find the hills covered in grass a foot tall, flowers abundantly coloring the earth, due to a winter of plentiful rain. Yet here in my wee cabin in the woods and meadows of Montana I have over a foot of snow. There is a little bird with a black head at the feeder on my porch. It stays perched on a post nibbling seeds, I swear it is taking in the fall of snow. Though more likely it is looking about for the next bird that will swoop in for food. My ponds are more liquid than frozen now, a sign of spring as well as the enormous call of Canada geese flying overhead. My California heart and memory is ready for green and flowers.

Regularly I wander through meadows and woods, earth covered in a blanket of snow, finding tracks and trails of creatures who have walked by, peaking my curiosity, wishing I could watch their passing. For the most part these tracks are single file, heading somewhere.

I spent yesterday with Dick at the outdoor Creston Auction. It snowed lightly on all the treasures, junk and people. There were three legged apple ladders a Hutterite man bought, a box of odds that a young man bought that had an old fashioned nail puller in it, something I had never seen the likes of. He bought it "because my grandfather had one like that". I saw snow shoes framed in wood and laced with sinew, antique tea pots, boxes of antlers, books getting soaked, building materials, antique tables. This list could go on and on. Dick spied a shelf that my computer could sit on, a man who had just bought it over heard us considering its perfect use, he handed it to me as a gift, kindness from an unknown man goes a long way.

We left for a wonderful lunch in Bigfork, mine was French pressed coffee and grilled salmon on a bed of baby greens, Dick had meat loaf wrapped in bacon with smashed potatoes. Driving by the auction again, we stopped and had our try bidding for more things. There is an art to auctions, hearing the speedy talk of the auctioneer an art I don’t quite have, yet. Upon arriving home I found tracks that ran all over my yard of snow, this snow that had a virgin surface for an entire winter season now has tracks crossing this way and that, running in circles. Tracks made by dogs, so different from tracks I have found in the wild. Makes me wonder what went on about my cabin while I had my day at a country auction?


Treasure Hunt

Recently, Kara on her Mother Henna blog held a treasure hunt! I was a lucky winner of her wonderful and lively art! Yea. She didn't send me one piece, or two, or three but four wonderful pieces! One of the cards she sent came in an envelope she had painted a yin/yang symbol on. It smells sooooo good, as she painted it with henna! Yum. My photo program is having trouble now so I can only share two images of her lovely and lively art that I found on her etsy store: