Elements of Recovery by Beverly King

I was very grateful to be given this deck recently and I’ve read through the book and I’ve just done the scans to get it into my database. Notice the attractive honeycomb backs.

I have never been attracted to alcohol or drugs but food is another thing. My reliance on food to assuage every little emotion or stress in life is literally killing me. Time to change, and this deck addresses the thinking for recovering from that.


Some of you might remember that Bev and I did a year-long weekly sketching project in 2015. After all that art practice Bev went on to create this deck with her own artwork and I just love it, love the compositions, and she’s put some terrific ideas together here. This scan features my favourite cards, although I found it hard to just pick seven favourites.

Having owned and used Bev’s equally wonderful Lojong for the Layperson cards which have her beautiful photography and very thoughtful juxtapositions of objects and plants, I knew I’d enjoy her write-ups for this deck; they are insightful, and the depictions on the cards really augment what she’s saying.

For beauty, I think I like that maple leaf best in the top row, but for meaning I really like the one of the tomato with the marigolds in the lower right. Anyone who has ever done companion planting will nod at this one. We always put marigolds around our vegetables in the garden!

I meant to post this a couple of days ago, but our refrigerator died and we had to scramble to get a new one and then clean the old one in 30 minutes. Initially they were supposed to deliver it in four days, but he called the same day and they delivered it. It must have been leaking for a while because the floor underneath was a mess, but thankfully my husband was able to clean it. These cards often discuss letting things go or accepting what happens, and I found that very helpful when the fridge drama started.

I have been three weeks following a vegan eating plan and am finally starting to notice some health improvement. The pain is still here but I’m chipping away at it. I bought an mini Instant Pot and five Kindle version cookbooks of Instant Pot recipes to help me stretch and make new meals. My husband eats meat but he’s eating less of it.

I am so grateful for this deck!!




Jet Black Quilt

I am having more fun with the Electric Quilt 8 program. This is another card from Crystal Portraits number two.



Years ago an Internet friend sent me a hardcover copy of A.S. Byatt’s novel Possession which I greatly enjoyed. In the story a brooch made of jet is featured and this card immediately reminded me of that. Jet is properly called lignite according to the card notes.

Jet was often used for mourning jewellery so can seem a bit spooky, apart from its dark colour. The association with bereavement is mentioned, but I liked that she talked about the “extreme powerlessness” that can accompany grief; it shakes you, shakes your confidence. There are other ideas in the write-up for this that I like. It’s supposed to be good for people who lack boundaries. A naturopath I went to told me I lacked boundaries so I was intrigued by this.

They use a sentence as a reminder in these decks that I like. This one says “there is a certain safety in darkness” which also holds true for me.

Today I received five little 5 mL tubes of Daniel Smith watercolours that I had special ordered. They cost on average $14 each plus $15 shipping. These were tiny, so I felt the price was pretty mean-spirited. I’m all for making a buck but this was robbery as the package measured about 2.5 inches square and was 5/8 of an inch deep. They are here and I am unlikely to beef up the 17 colours of Daniel Smith paints that I have since no one in Canada sells the small tubes online.

My big disappointment was that the Arthur Rackham Oracle that I ordered arrived, but he made a mistake and sent me the small deck instead of the jumbo/giant one I had purchased. He immediately rectified the mistake after I sent him photographs of the deck with a ruler showing the measurement. I can’t describe how this threw me for a loop, probably because I am planning to sew a quilted bag with crazy patchwork and charms and lace for the flap. My disappointment was absolutely soul-crushing, all out of proportion to the error.

I sat around in my nightie all day, trying to think why this upset me so. I don’t know, maybe the defeat of my anticipation?

It’s just a feeling. Hopefully tomorrow I will be recharged.



Discover the Path



I have never heard of this stone before. In the pairings she mentions vetiver and oregano as going well with this and I love the scent of both vetiver and oregano. “One discovers the path while walking it.” is the reminder with this card. It’s supposed to aid those who feel shy and awkward which suits me today as a neighbour has asked us over for a Christmas visit.

It provides a sense of where the person is going and why, linking seemingly disconnected aspects of life.

I just love the colours.


Vast, Mysterious, and Dreamy

Yes, it’s the Universe today!


I was up until 4:30 a.m. upgrading and installing the Electric Quilt 8 program. I have version 6 on my old Windows laptop and it was frustrating me that I couldn’t just use it. Mostly these days I print off paper piecing miniature patterns or make graphics to use for other things as you can see here. I hated version 6, so this was pleasant to upgrade and I’ll try and use some of the other tools as well. It certainly saves a clearer block and the fabrics fill much, much better than in EQ6.

I also updated the Garmin Express software on the Mac computer and then updated my Garmin portable GPS device.

This stone really does look like the aurora borealis. Wouldn’t we all want a chunk of Labradorite? Of course. I bought myself a chrysocolla sphere for Christmas, after wanting one for 16 years. I never had the money but I was able to afford it now so I kept the dream and fulfilled it. One of the enchanted aspects of the Universe is that when you’re old there are still dreams to be had.

Always carry the ethereal quality of the Northern Lights with you.



The Ferric Impurities of the Season



I have some citrine chips that I use when making jewellery but not a larger stone, so I loved this big picture. Citrine is composed of quartz with “ferric impurities” which explains it’s translucence and smoky look.

What I liked about the write-up on the back of the card was the noted ideal pairings of cinnamon, gold, and frankincense, making this a great tie-in to the Christmas season. Citrine is good for “finding the energy to address blockages in projects or group dynamics.” You can build unselfish devotion to your own needs and self-worth. Definitely something I can use, as I’m bogged down on all my projects and feeling blahsville.

As part of self-care I decided to look around for Christmas ornaments. I couldn’t find the big Santa I’ve been looking for, and the pattern I bought to sew one last year didn’t quite work out, so I bought a used, uncut McCalls sewing pattern for a 15-inch Santa and some sheep locks to make his beard. They will be mailed after Christmas but hopefully I can get one sewn for next year.

When we were out yesterday I found this little fellow in a store. He’s a tree ornament, but much too big for my tabletop tree, so he thought he’d roister about those presents under the tree (which are fake), and because he’s on a spring, he likes to dance and wobble to Christmas carols. As you do.

I think he has some gold embroidery on his bag, making him vitally interested in Citrine.


He’s also super excited because my Arthur Rackham Oracle has shipped. Good season to you!




The Spirit Within Crystals and Colour

Finally, my two Crystal Portraits decks arrived yesterday. Worth the wait, I thought I’d do a small colour exercise with the Spirit Within Tarot and some of the new crystal cards. Because I can. Because it’s Saturday and I just finished a playing card jigsaw even though my arm hurts, and so I can fiddle with my cards.

There is nothing better than a rummage through cards.



Actually I do find Howlite relevant here because of the anguish of the person in the background of the Five of Swords, and Howlite’s properties for helping people with PTSD. It calms haunting energies and anxiety. Due to an attack that happened to me when I was 18, I do have PTSD, which flared up after a horrible incident at the job I had before I retired for good. Nightmares and other things. Both Hematite and Howlite refer to being patient, to calming temper.

You are where you are, this is what you’ve got, but nothing is wrong, it’s just the way you think about it. Did I lose the battle or did I simply find a way to be tranquil? I like the thought of art with Hematite because red ochre comes from it, and that was used for cave painting. Even in the Hermitage as I call it, or the cave, I can be creative and enjoy life.

I can also enjoy starting a digital jigsaw from the montage I made yesterday of The Arthur Rackham Oracle. Arthur knows about art.


Ain’t so bad Rock here in the quietude of the Hermitage.



Katie Rose Inks Along

I bought deck 1 and 2 of Crystal Portraits by Katie Rose Pipkin. On Etsy she goes by the name of Peony Coin Archer in an unfathomable obfuscation, but after further exploration online I found that Katie Rose is her real name. She also drew and published The Efflorescent Tarot, which is one I missed.

Oh, she does lovely pen and ink work and likes cats, who would be better for inspiration? Until I’m dead I look for inspiring artists to buy cards and books from.

You get 25 cards in each deck and the information on each crystal is on the back. The fact that these are inked and coloured (with coloured pencil I think) was what set me off. This could mean drawing my own little set of gemstones and crystals juxtaposed with cat figurines perhaps, or art supplies. You’ve got to work such things in some way or other for maximum pleasure.

Here is a snippet from her shop of the two decks.


I’m not sure when these will ship but it’s nice to have ordered them, along with the Cryptic Cards for Christmas. Incidentally, Katie Rose designed a moth generator on the computer, samples of which can be seen online. I thought it was quite synchronistic that I bought her decks with Immy Smith’s moth playing cards.

Yeah, it’s a big, old coincidence, a big, fat synchronistic extravaganza, or I’m not a moth lover, by gum arabic.