Wednesday, December 30, 2015


As has been my practice over the last few years, I've picked a word for the coming year….

not for a 'resolution' but perhaps a theme for the year 

(if it works out, no pressure here)...

In the past I've chosen the words 

Joy, Clarity, Balance and Completion.

This year the words that came to me were 

Self Care

As I formed these words in my mind and out loud……

I wondered what that would really look like for me.  

Would it mean long baths, massage, and a more rigorous skin care routine?

Would it mean more long walks, meditation, and sky gazing?…..

Would it mean spending more time alone with my Self?

Would it mean carving out time every day for creative pursuit?…..

Would it mean slowing down?….

Would it mean checking in to make certain what I'm doing is what "I" want to be doing?

Would it mean being kinder to my Self?…

I feel as though 2015, for me, has been one of playing "catch up",

never feeling I had enough time to address serious nagging issues that needed my attention

and often feeling rushed and pressured and confused…

(and please know I continue to be deeply grateful for my amazing year)

but I want this next one to feel more grounded….

So I declare 2016 to be the year of 


Yes. Let's try that.

Happy New Year!

Our view of the Organ Mountains in southern New Mexico on Christmas Eve

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Happiness update….

I've been mind mumbling for days pondering an 'end of the year' post…..

and this is all I've come up with.

This year I've driven across this country and back from west to east and from south to north………and visited with more friends and family than I have in years...

It seems a blur and the highlights many….

And since my last post, I've been to Michigan again to see the grand triplets who are 9 now.  


How does that happen?

And I also had my biggest birthday yet. I guess we can all say that, however navigating 
Medicare and Social Security has given me more stress than I've experienced in years.  
I don't know how the truly aged and infirm manage it.

My house is almost done….of course my studio is still waiting for it's turn…boxes to the ceiling in that room prohibit any creativity from happening there….

but there's hope for the new year.

I've burned so many fires in my fireplace that my small cache of wood is almost gone
….and that feels good….
to know I have a fire in my 'place'.

I'm really looking forward to next year, perhaps slowing down a bit, and making some stuff….

note to self: get more specific so the Universe knows what you desire. 

Wishing everyone a Happy and a Merry!

OH, and as for 'Happiness'….my incense is burning bright

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

My first attempt at 'Happiness'…..

Just kidding….(sort of)

As the Ghosts of Christmas' Past always seem to find me this time of year,

I thought I'd cheer mySelf

with an attempt at making some incense I'll call 'Happiness'

I've been collecting ingredients for years...

wanting to try this...

and finally made the leap.

Now I'll wait two weeks for them to dry,

 with hopes the coven of happy cones burn evenly…


as an added surprise

 my house smells just like a candy cane! 

(not my favorite flavor, but it does smell Happy, if that can be)

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Festival of the Cranes….

A visit to the Bosque Del Apache National Wildlife Refuge in Socorro, NM

left us Feeling Thankful…

and Grateful for those who care for this beautiful landscape

and the Magical Feathered ones….

who leave us in constant Awe

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Helena & Home...

That evening, Bid and I survived the narrow winding deteriorating road to the town of East Glacier as the park seemed to be closing behind us.

It was not lost on us how the stellar weather had opened an opportunity for us to see a part of this country that in most years shuts down the beginning of September.

The next day we regrouped….visited one more museum, the Museum of the Plains Indian, in Browning, Montana and headed down the hill to Helena, where I planned to visit another dear friend, Shimmer, whom I had met years before on that hike in Yellowstone.
She's the one who got me up the mountain and I'm still pinching myself that I was able to see her again.

So that was pretty much that.

After some celebration, Bid, Shimmer and I hugged, got a bit emotional and watched Bid drive away toward her next adventure after which I crawled back into my warm bed,
exhausted from the travel and a cold I'd suffered from the entire journey…..

The next day I crossed visiting the world renown Archie Bray Foundation

off my bucket list...

from their website:

'Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Bray is located three miles from downtown Helena, Montana on the site of the former Western Clay Manufacturing Company. Set against the wooded foothills of the Rocky Mountains, the 26-acre former brickyard is internationally recognized as a gathering place for emerging and established ceramic artists. The nearby mountains and brick factory ruins provide a backdrop for the creative environment; more important is the dynamic arts community created by the resident artists that come to the Bray to work, share experiences, and explore new ideas.'

And as everything else was closing due to the impending winter weather, this place was pretty much shut down as well..

as that weather finally seemed to be closing in on us and snow was in the forecast…


 we saw this….

a short video taken by Shimmer from the side of the road...

And the perfect ending to my 2,000 mile road trip.

leaves me wanting for more every time I see it

Tuesday, October 27, 2015


The weather held out for us at the end of September,  

and the constant threat of wildfires didn't dampen our resolve to get to 

Missoula "a river runs through it" Montana,

located on the captivating, ever present, Clark Fork River,

where we spent the night with a clear view of the Blood Moon eclipse …

and then headed north to the sweet town of Whitefish,

through smokey vistas,

past the massive, crystal clear, cold as ice, Flathead Lake...

and to Glacier National Park the next day….

We drove across the 'Going-To-The-Sun Road
completed in 1932, engineered and built by road artisans of the time….

(and imagine being from New Zealand driving this road…

mostly in the middle, thank the Dogs no one was coming from the other way!)

to the eastern side of the park…

past burned forest…..

another glacial lake….

and this disinterested guy as we left the park ...

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Colville Reservation….

After 8 days of travel and 1,500 miles from where we began in Telluride, Colorado,
we finally arrived at  the Grand Coulee Dam near the Colville Reservation in the state of Washington,
where we believed our Chief Joseph was buried.

After spending the night at a hotel near the dam, we drove a remote road to the Colville Reservation and located Chief Joseph's gravesite in a small dusty cemetery.
If it were not for the state's historical society, we wondered what kind of monument would have been built for him. This site is not well known, or easy to find.
 It might confuse some that come to Joseph, Oregon to pay their respects
perhaps unknowingly at his father's grave.

I am not well versed on what really happened in his life that would have caused him to live here with other non-treaty tribes instead of on the Nez Perce land in Idaho,
however I gleaned that his life was not a happy one here.

It was noted by the doctor that his cause of death,

"was a broken heart".

Bid and I held hands and said another 'forgiveness' prayer for all of us.

Release, Release, Realease……

Those were not the words of the prayer, but they were our intention, 
and we felt it working on us as well.

We left the gravesite knowing his spirit was not there, 
with the general feeling that we were all at peace,
and that collectively our work to get there had been a good thing.

We also began to notice the smoke of the wild fires in that area, but still enjoyed the spectacular views of the Columbia River as we drove away from the reservation.

As I had a date to fly home from Helena and Bid was to be at the Bear Paw site the following weekend, we decided our next stop would be somewhere in Montana.