Peony Reflections

Posted July 7, 2015 by JJ
Categories: Art Postcards

Tags: , ,

I was rooting around in my postcard box at the front, and came across this lovely card. I often keep cards with art on them with my postcard collection. It was sent to me in October 2003 by an old tarot friend. She sent me a vintage silk scarf and the New Age Tarot.

She fell out with me four or five years ago after misconstruing something I’d said in an e-mail, and has refused to speak to me since then. I didn’t try and clarify my words to her because I think when situations like that happen, people are perhaps not really friends, they’ve closed their minds to who you really are and what you really said. I remember her with fondness, she was a lively and creative person.

Yucky old e-mail. I much prefer to write real letters these days with my fountain pens, customizing graphic headers on my sugarcane paper, and changing ink colours and pens in a random whirl.

Photography © Tom Baril


We have peonies in our garden but they don’t last long. One is pale pink and the other is a deep red. Red and white opposites in the front and back gardens.

Ah, one of the buds is turned away, refusing to open, closed up tightly. Rather an apt depiction of this former friendship.



Dance and Brandish Cups to Fortify Yourself

Posted July 5, 2015 by JJ
Categories: Tarot - General

Tags: , ,

We have been busy this week painting and organizing and such. I now have to tackle the dining room table, where chairs are swathed in fat quarters and half meters of fabric and dolls disport among the embroidery floss. Five buried projects will come to light, but I can’t work on them because we are trying to get the house ready for sale.

Then we’re going to recover the dining room chair seats with fabric I bought five or ten years ago. We keep saying to each other “Why didn’t we look after ourselves?” or “We should have done this years ago.” Patterns in life, usually cemented in by problems in life. We went through a horrendous time during a bad recession in 1989-1993 and in some ways we didn’t bounce back.



How did I get this when the deck isn’t published yet? Steve sent me a written note on the back of one last year! This is from The Spirit Within the Shadows Tarot by Steven Bright. I was rummaging about looking for something to use and out it popped, reminding me to dance and celebrate and move, always move.

Joy, movement. Keep going.

I had a dream early yesterday morning where we were driving in the car and came to the crest of a hill, but we could see nothing over it, we couldn’t see how steep the hill was or if it curved. Nothing. So we sat and finally my husband said we’d just go and over we went and he said “Oh-oh” and we started to fall downward, surrounded by planets and space.

So I was telling him this dream in the car yesterday coming back from the library and I said “It was like we were free falling.” And I said I bet it means we should just go on our move and free fall, go with the flow. About seven minutes later they played the song Free Fallin’ by Tom Petty. I looked at him and said “It must be a sign!”

That was the 3 of Cups moment.

Strange Shapes in the Moorland

Posted July 3, 2015 by JJ
Categories: Art Postcards

Tags: , , , ,

Working my way back to a previous set of postcards, this is another one from the National Trust in Britain.

Brimham Rocks, North Yorkshire
National Trust Images/Paul Harris
One of the extraordinary millstone grit stacks in Nidderdale.


This is one of the moorland rock formations in this area conserved by the National Trust as a collection. I always think of the National Trust with regard to historic buildings but they also preserve natural sites like this. It seems like a nice place to enjoy a walk or climb and enjoy the dramatic views and scenery.

I have to leave the computer for a day while paint on the stairs is drying, which is going to be a bit tricky, so I can only begin a jigsaw for this. It’s also going to be tricky to do that tree with all the similar leaves.


Tricky? Oh no, not for you Jude, don’t be silly. Phhht.

If only life was really like that…




Night-flowering in Jamaica

Posted July 2, 2015 by JJ
Categories: Art Postcards

Tags: , , , ,

110. Night-flowering Lily and Ferns, Jamaica
Marianne North, 1830-1890
Oil on Paper
Marianne North Gallery, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew


This is my favourite postcard from the batch Steve sent me. They are all beautiful but this one particularly has such depth, even my scanner cannot capture the depth of colour and contrast in this, it’s gorgeous. I wore a lily corsage on my wedding day, and the night-blooming aspect of this makes for a haunting picture.

I’ve had another poor week due to pain from sitting in the dentist’s chair and side effects from antibiotics. We are trying to paint rooms and that’s going pretty well, although I haven’t been able to help much.

Of course, I need to do a jigsaw of this beauty.


Perhaps I shall consider myself a night-bloomer, showing my colours against the night sky, gazing at Venus and Jupiter, rising from the ghostly undergrowth?




Hey, is that a Tea Towel?

Posted June 26, 2015 by JJ
Categories: Tarot - General

Tags: , ,

Oooh-la-la, we are having five new windows put in the house. We should have done this years ago.

I developed a small blood clot from a fall I had three weeks ago, so I had to go to the doctor to have it checked. Good thing I did because my leg was getting infected. I’m just amazed that after only 3 pills, my leg and I were feeling so much better. No wonder I felt so crummy.



The meerkat guys wanted a nice brush and gradient in the background. They wanted orange or aqua but I managed to settle them down. Meerkats live in large familial groups. Sharing duties and being part of a team is beneficial for everyone, plus it makes you feel well.

So I guess I could apply this to recent events. My husband and I cleaned up the “den” which was getting a mite overloaded with junk, so that the contractor could get in the door and replace the window and repair the wall. There was quite a bit of mildew on the floor so the spouse cleaned that up, and when he starts to paint the bedrooms again, I’ll go in that room with a couple of garbage bags and get it totally decluttered and ready for putting the house up for sale. Meerkats know that sharing takes time.

Foraging for food and keeping a lookout to help the colony survive, they wonder why they have kept all those ratty old and stained tea towels in the linen closet.



The Database with the Answer

Posted June 22, 2015 by JJ
Categories: Database Monday

Tags: , , , , ,

This is The Answer Deck miniature edition by New York artist Nicholas Zann, published by Running Press. One of the decks that escaped my notice until Steve encouraged me to get it. We should start a club: Steve Made Me Buy.


I consider black and white decks a sub-genre of my collection and I enjoy collecting them. I’ve never understood why others don’t like them as much, because the art is often way better than that in conventional decks, and the art in this is wonderful, I immediately liked it.

This is a shot of cards laid out on the spread sheet that comes with this kit, showing the back of the cards on the left. I never use the sheet but wanted to show it in the database as it came with the cards. In reality this red is much better, darker and more saturated, but my scanner always has problems with reds. The cards measure 50 x 79 mm.


Here are a couple more favourites from this deck. I’d forgotten how much I like it, so I’ll keep it out for a bit and use it.


The little booklet only has two signatures in it but they are Smyth-sewn, which is a sturdy bookbinding method that lies flat. It’s really quite unexpected for a booklet.

I was a bit surprised by the art in this deck because Nicholas Zann does much dreamier, softer portraits in oil, but he also likes cartoons and illustrations, so that ties in more with the art of this deck. Gosh, I just realized that he’s about 72 years-old now! Upon checking, I see that the full-size edition of these cards is going for whopping amounts on the secondary market, which makes me glad I bought a copy before it got too expensive, as the art is so appealing to me.

It holds up as a usable deck and a set of 73 pieces of artwork.

Buck up Cookie, I Hear You

Posted June 20, 2015 by JJ
Categories: Tarot - General

Tags: , , , ,

Dave was out for a walk this morning, and Cookie was getting a bit wonky so Cerberus offered to hold him up. Dr. Boar and Mr. Fox felt this was rather nice of old Cerbs, who has a reputation for being mean and biting people.


SEA KING (King of Cups)


Such a regal fellow. Funny, today I feel the reversed meaning of this. It’s all very well to feel compassion and reconciliation toward others but sometimes you are compromising your own values. If you stay true to yourself, yet disappoint others, it’s not always a bad thing.

I’m not sure why this has come up, but I really feel focused on the reverse meaning. This King can be somewhat scatty and undecided, perhaps because he tries so hard to be all things to all people, never wanting to be seen as lacking in compassion.

I sometimes wonder if anyone actually listens to me; like this King I’ve become more used to listening to others. Certainly my immediate partner is doing exactly what he wants without considering anything I say. I wonder if some of my physical pain and chronic muscle tension and pain comes from this, as if my body was shutting down because no one was considering how it feels? For years I’ve felt like a little donkey that the spouse nags and kicks to get it doing what he wants. Over and over.

Oh, don’t I feel guilty saying that? What if I listen to myself and in doing so disappoint others, is that so bad?

Whew, emotions. Cups are not my favourite suit, they always come up with this stuff.





Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 143 other followers