Monday, July 30, 2012

A Completed Project and a Gift

I finished this blanket a little while ago. I like how it turned out. I have another project ready to go on the loom which I will talk about in another post.

Quite awhile ago I won a giveaway on my friend Lisa's blog.  It took awhile for her to mail it to me so she included this lovely piece of art with the package.

This big prize included a set of inktense pencils. I love using these, they are so vibrant when water is added to them.

Then there was this bound journal which is really a ledger.

The inside has pages of ledger paper that I will have fun uses for.  Its not old looking of course but it will still be great to use. I could even dye it with tea to age it a bit.

and last but not least a little paper mache' book thats is all set for decorating. Thank you Lisa for being so generous. I sure feel blessed to receive all these goodies.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Cannon Beach

I have been working on my website all day so its time to get back to travel for my post today.

We spent many hours walking along this shore. I do love the Oregon coast and the ocean.  It has such contemplative beauty about it.  I so wish I lived closer.

We had the most perfect day at the beach. Here she is  my daughter the bathing beauty. Unfortunately she really got sunburned badly despite having sunscreen on.

I was at Cannon Beach about ten years ago and I really loved it. So coming back here was a must. Here is that most famous view of haystack rock.

Girls never tire of playing in the sand or maybe its the writer in her leaving her mark.

Its a little rough but such a beautiful heart.

Of course I was next so I wrote my name in the sand.

Once you begin I know you start seeing hearts and other pieces of beauty wherever you go. I loved the colors in this shell.  It was pretty fragile and I knew it would have broken by the time I got home so we left it on the beach for someone else to cart home.

We saw this pair of skulls in one of the shops.  I loved how they were painted.

We too a rest on this bench. I love it when there are nooks and crannies everywhere that are just fun to explore. There is more to come but that can wait for another day.  Have a fabulous weekend.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Writing - Progress

An old picture of myself writing, crown and all.

Its Wednesday already so time to post any progress I have made.  I read the  Little Earth Medicine's book on the Wolf. I got a couple tidbits on it but not as much as I thought I would.  I wish I had read it before I ordered the Crow book from the same series on Amazon.  I wouldn't have purchased it but now I have a gift for someone.  The other two books on writing Nail your Novel and Characters and Emotion and Viewpoint are still works in progress.  I have focused on the later book. It is really good and is helping me see how to rewrite my own fiction.  I am noticing also what I have been doing incorrectly so that has been a plus.
In the next week I want to focus on both of these books and do some research on ravens. 

This afternoon I am headed to a root canal specialist. It looks like they will remove the old root canal, add a new one that goes deeper and clean out any infection. It doesn't sound like its going to be fun at all.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Lady in Red

I have been working on this painting for the last several days. I am still not satisfied with it. So I'd love your opinion. Does the background need more, her dress look off, her skin need more blending or is it just me being over critical. I look at the canvas and think its the right side that could use something, it doesn't seem balanced to me.  Should I add words somewhere or what.  Ideas please?

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Writing Wednesdays

I said yesterday that I would talk about a new project today. Its also an old one too. Its a novel that I started during NaNoWriMo, that National Novel Writing Month back in 2008. I have pulled the manuscript out many times, sometimes thinking I really want to finish and rewrite it. Sometimes I think its just garbage and not worth the time and other times there are some elements that I really love. They don't want to let go of me. Sarah read what I wrote and marked it up pretty good with her red pen. It needs a lot of work. The time she told me it was probably a trilogy I got really frustrated because I just wanted to take one of my November novels and finish it.  This is turning out to be a bigger project than I intended. So once more I put it aside.  Sometimes there are projects that you are just supposed to do and I think for me this is one of them.

I've always been pretty transparent on this blog. I show my successes and failures. I share the entire journey in the hopes that by my example another person will have the courage to follow their own inclinations. I don't claim to be a good writer or really to know anything about what I am doing but I do  know how to share.  I think that in putting a public face on this it makes me more accountable.  So here is my plan. I am going to share what my work in progress is about, what kinds of things I am doing on a weekly basis to move me towards my goal.  You can come along for the ride or just skip my Wednesdays posts.

The working title for my novel is The Raven Story. My main character is a woman named Zia who grows up in a Native American type culture.  She travels with a wolf named Kael that she communicates with telepathically. She 'll be on a journey searching for her father whom, she feels holds the secret to her existence and several other mysteries. The Ravens are a race of people she will encounter.  I have a pinterest board with some images for inspiration.  You can see it here.

I have been reading other fantasy's to become familiar with how other authors are doing this.  The latest being The Seven realms series by Cinda Williams Chima  To be a good writer you really need to be reading a lot of books in your genre, so I am trying to do that.

My first draft has several areas I want to work on first: strengthening my main character, creating a more in depth culture for her to come from. So that means research.  This week I am reading the Little Wolf Medicine's book on the Wolf.   I am hoping for some factoids to flesh out my wolf character a little more. I will also be reading Nail Your Novel : why writers abandon books and how you can draft, fix and finish with confidence. I am sure it will be helpful. To help me with my character development I will be using Characters and Viewpoint, from the Write Great Fiction Series.

I'll report in next week on how this all went.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Raven Spreads Her Wings

Time for a break from the travelogue I have been doing.  When I went through my croning ceremony at the Woman's Summer Solstice Gathering we were given the option to choose a name.  I decided to give myself some time to think about it.  I knew it would involve Raven somehow but waited for the idea to come to me.  The name came to me in a dream and I decided to paint it.  In fact I am planning on doing many paintings with this as a theme.  My crone name is


She is painted on 18 x 24 Mixed Media paper using Liquitex basics and oil pastels. This whole idea is also related to another project that I am working on that I will talk about tomorrow.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Sunday Sketches

My Sketch for today. It feels good to be drawing again. Go check out what other sketchers are doing here. The lovely Sophia has a link list of all participating artists,

Saturday, July 14, 2012

On To Oregon

After leaving Washington I headed to Oregon to see this girl. I sure have missed her.

Our first day out and about we headed here.  This store is full of fun stuff.

We had lunch here.  The crepes were good, there was French Music in the background and the waiter had on a beret. I loved soaking in the atmosphere. There were other stops but I kept forgetting to pull out my phone to take pictures.  Alas fun was had that day.

The next day we headed for the coast.  We were following this truck and trying to decide what these things were.  We thought maybe fruit boxes and that is what they were.

While traveling through Nehalem we saw this sign and Sarah wanted a picture of it. When you go to the website its not quite what you expect, but they have a cool logo.

I loved how they painted the outside of this building so I turned around so we could snap this shot. Then it was on the road again to find our camp for the night.

Then at last our destination.The coast, the beautiful Oregon coast.

So happy to be at the beach once more.

Monday, July 9, 2012

The Summer Solstice Gathering

The Women Summer Solstice Gathering that I went to in Washington State was fabulous and wonderful.  I met so  many wonderful women. If you can imagine being with 200 other women all on similar paths meeting in community you can have a little tast of what it was like. It is a recreation of how women were treated and valued in the time of the Goddess and in some native cultures.  Females from 4 months to age 76 attended.  There were workshops, sweat lodges, a moon lodge and a healing lodge along with a sellers market and many sacred ceremonies.  Picture were not allowed due to the sacred and personal nature of events.  I did manage a couple though in the off times.

This is Jeanne, I camped my tent next to hers and it was a good decision.  She is an artist and we had a lot to share. This is the day it really poured rain, so much that we both got water in our tents. Jeanne was working in the healing lodge giving a massage to Lynne. That turned out to be a momentous thing for both of us.

Here I am with my friend Lynn. She invited Jeanne to stay in her cabin. Jeanne immediately said oh I can't leave Kate by herself so I was invited too. We had to stay in the top bunks but we'd be warm. The big plus was connecting with these fabulous women.

Patti and Cheryl were also in the cabin.  A lovely mother and daughter from New Jersey. It was great getting to know them.

Often at the ceremonies people really dressed up.  I got a snap of these two lovely ladies before things began.

One of the amazing days was Saturday where we went through rites of passages workshops.  That evening there were ceremonies honoring these rites. I can now say I am officially a wise-women crone. This was a life changing weekend for me.  I can't wait to attend next year.

I did very little art while I was gone. This doodle was about the only thing.

I started this page a few days ago. I will probably add a poem or some journaling to it. The girl was drawn separately and glued down.  I used Gelatos and colored pencils to color her in.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Back From My Travels

After two weeks of travel I am back home to the heat of summer. I spent yesterday doing most of the laundry and unpacking everything.  You know what they say, that you need a vacation after a vacation. The time to have your air conditioning go out in your car is not when the country is having a heat wave.  The trip home was pretty rough.   I had been listening to a book on tape called Home Front by Kristin Hannah. It was all about a female pilot who goes to Iraq and has to leave her kids. The scenes in Iraq where they talked about the heat really felt real to me as I felt the sweat on my back and everywhere else.  I hope the next book I listen to doesn't have such a reality feel to it. I finally just bought a bag of ice, and ate it and took chips of ice and smeared them all over myself. It did have a cooling effect that helped.

Here I am in the car all packed and ready to go.

I drove north through Montana and some awesome county. I love Montana I really miss going there now that Sarah is done with school.

Before I knew it I was back in Idaho. I stopped at Couer d'Alene for the night and stayed with a friend.  In the morning I had one of these caramel pecan rolls from Jimmy's Down the Street.  Its an awesome diner that was featured on Diners Drive-Ins and Dives. I got this fresh out of the oven and even got to meet the pastry chef.

These prairie dogs were all around a rest stop in Washington. I am sure they get lots of photos taken.

At this rest stop there were signs like these all over.

I guess that they didn't want to encourage these guys. They were cute anyways and seemed well fed despite the signs.

At this rest area I thought I hadn't left Idaho. We have a lot of these puppies but I saw them in Washington and Oregon too.

I stopped at a few overlooks and rest areas that had some spectacular scenery.  It was hard getting back into the car. I am somewhere in Washington State.  The water looks so inviting here. To be continued....