Tuesday, June 22, 2010


The final Celtic Woman Journal

Here she is again only totally different! I liked the Celtic Woman Journal that I created to take with me on my trip to the UK, but honestly, I didn’t love her. She was too whimsical looking for the serious journey I’ll be on. A serious journey needs a serious journal. I view Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England as a land of mystery. I wanted my journal to reflect that mystery.

Here is a layout of the entire journal

Close-up, can you still see the bottle caps that were in the original collage?

I realized that my collage, Lady of the Labyrinth, was the perfect look I wanted. I ran a digital image of her and went to town on my sewing machine using those wondrous (and oh so hard to work with) metallic threads. I embroidered and free motioned for a long time. (especially since the thread kept breaking and getting stuck in the bobbin!) Then, I used a beautiful fabric I found at one of our local fabric shops for the exterior along with some other exotic embellishments.

Another close-up of the metallic gold, silver and teal thread

Here is a picture of the inside of journal. I added golden fringe for excitement

Celtic Woman number 1 will not go to waste though. I have decided to use her for a sign-in book for those who walk Woodloft labyrinth.

Journal number 1 sitting in the center of my labyrinth

Now..before I say anymore, I want to announce the winner of my Spice Mistress post. I used a random number generator and number 22 is the winner. Congratulations to Lori Saul of Ravenpainting! You will be receiving your $40 gift certificate from CSN soon. Please e-mail me with your address.

I am going to try to find YiFi in the areas I will travel, so that I can send you pictures of this beautiful land. My granddaughter, Marcy, is accompanying me and she is a computer expert. If it is there, she will find it. If not, I will post when I return in August. We are undertaking a long journey to some very rural parts of the UK. Marcy wanted to venture all the way north to Loch Ness so that we might catch a glimpse of Nessie.

It is hard for me to leave my beautiful Woodloft, (my home) at this time of year. Summer in the Blue Ridge area is absolutely breathtaking, but I know I’m going to a place of beauty as well. And, I believe that with every journey you take, there is a lesson to be learned and I am ever so ready for my pilgrimage!

My front deck-what I'm leaving, picture courtesy of Stephanie Oliver

Picture of my tour-where I'm headed!

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Tuesday, June 15, 2010



"White" market of Akka or Acre.

Follow me on a little journey, if you dare. We will let the heady aroma of spices lead us down narrow passageways where we will find the Spice Mistress selling her wares. As we stroll along, we inhale the fragrance of pungent spices from every part of the world.

Spice Mistress is a gypsy at heart. and she will always travel to where her trade leads her. Casablanca, Kashmir, Istanbul, Madagascar - these foreign places are no stranger to her.

Today, she is an itinerant peddler at the famous Akka market. Let your imagination take you there with the help of these wonderful photos.

Look at this tower of spices! Photo taken on the Souk Khan at-i-Ziet in the Muslim quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem

I was inspired to create a series dealing with spices from around the world after a friend of mine, Wayne St. Clair, visited Jerusalem last year. He knows how I love to blend flavors with spices and sent me back e-pictures of the spice markets in Akka. The photos that Wayne took had me longing to be standing right in front of those ancient stalls and inhaling the aroma of these gems.

The Spice Mistress Sculpture-first in my new series


Side view of Spice Mistress

Catlin from CSN has offered me a gift certificate for $40 to be given to one of you in conjunction with my spice posting. Perhaps you can purchase one of the mortar and Pestles to whip up your own special blend of spices. Below is a picture of the one I own and I notice it is offered by Sur La Table, one of their sites. Catlin asked me to post a link to one of their 200 stores, ’lights’ which I had no problem doing since I’m looking for lighting for my Tuscany Suite. This is the room I posted about awhile back. I’m renovating it so that I can offer classes here at Woodloft next year.

There is nothing to do to win the gift certificate but leave a comment and I’ll announce the winner on Tuesday, June 22rd.

Mortar and Pestle I have used for years

A spice vendor in Akka.

Inside Damascus gate

I’m offering Spice Mistress for sale on a Etsy, where you will be able to see more details. Alternately, you can e-mail me. I take all of the major credit cards and checks.

I hope you enjoyed your spice journey. If you’d like to see more of Wayne’s photography from Jerusalem, you can click here

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010



Moon Woman Collage

This is a story I wrote several years back. It appears in my book titled,“Grandmother Tree.” I have discontinued that book since it is outdated but I continue to use stories from it and I still believe in almost everything I wrote about Moon Woman.

“Moon Woman”

By the moon’s light, she plucks the herbs from the hidden dells and meadows surrounding her glen. Sometimes she gathers in the full moon and other times she waits for an eclipse. She knows the properties of the herbs are altered by the moon’s different phases.

Being Celtically aware, she practices the earth rites as the old ones before. She accepts the earth as a living entity and believes in the magical order of the trees. She has learned how to become a healer and knows that all illness begins in the mind, dwelled upon until it becomes a thought form. She teaches others to discipline their thoughts for they will take form and that if you can change your thoughts…you can change your life.

View from the bottom

Disciplining ones thoughts is easier said than done. I’m constantly working on it and find that when I get one thought totally disciplined, another worrisome thought seems to take it’s place. It’s the nature of our species I’m afraid, but I won’t give up trying.


I used acrylic and textured paints on a birchwood framed board. The dimensions are 8”w x 10” h . and 1 ½ “ deep. I like a thick edge for easier hanging.

Moon Woman can be purchased on Etsy if you prefer to use Paypal or directly from me. I take all the major credit cards or checks. I am happy to ship world wide, just e-mail me for prices.

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