The Great Mantid Imperative

While discussing The Hermit card in the Animal Totem Tarot on May 13th, I was moaning that I wasn’t able to find a suitable mantis figure. Someone heard my plea, and an amazing occurrence happened yesterday when I received a large plastic mantis figure all the way from Hawaii in the mail. Obviously someone recognized the absolute NEED for something like this.


Yes, he’s heading for the dining room to check out those cat figurines in the new cabinet.

Today, Mr. Mantis and I decided to explore card decks in my collection that feature mantids. Rare is the artist who recognizes the need to feature one of these insects in a deck, but there are artists hip to the vibe, fortunately for our examination. UPDATE: I discovered that Paulina Cassidy is working on her new deck the Spiritsong Tarot, and it will have a mantis as The Hanged Man as well as other animals on each card.


Wow, six of them turned up for the party. The little green guy in the Osho Zen is sitting on the man’s hand, but if you look closely you can see his triangular head turning sideways as they discuss the outrageous prices of Meissen porcelain. Yeah, that would get anyone talking.


So ends our exploration for today.

There seems to be an essential need for a piece of artwork featuring a mantis with a cat figurine, have you noticed this?




Eagles Across Decks

I thought I had all my cards unboxed from our cross-country move but while searching for particular animal decks, I realized that some loose ones that I wrapped separately from their boxes were missing. Fortunately the spouse rounded them up for me. You would think with 394 decks I would forget but Judith never forgets a deck!

An overview with an attendant eagle figure, this one by Schleich.


And don’t forget those other four decks Jude. The eagle in the card with the yellow border has taken a fancy to my figure, he’s zooming toward him with some urgency. Figures inspire everyone I suppose.


The KING OF SWORDS  was the card I drew today from the Animal Totem Tarot that started the eagles flying. I had mentioned to someone recently how my deck collecting had gone down lately because I just want to buy art created by hand or at least created by hand in Adobe Illustrator. Upon taking these cards out my heart sang with the impact and beauty of the art and each artist’s expression and composition. It does not get better than this for me as a collector, this stuff makes me happy and inspires my own artwork.

The King, in his highly analytical way, enjoyed this comparison. In this card as you fly higher you strip away what isn’t important, your soaring height makes things clearer, shifts the focus, lets you drop nonessentials. Not a bad reflection of how I currently feel about card decks.


The Magical Menagerie was one deck I couldn’t find this morning so I knew I had another box somewhere. The Pathfinders deck holds up, it’s one of my favourites. Susan Seddon Boulet has been dead since 1997, but her Animal Spirits Knowledge Cards are still in print, and no wonder; what a legacy.


I think the Animal Messages deck is out of print now but I’m so glad I bought one when it was readily available, it’s a treasure, and Sue Lion’s Spirit Animals always looks so fresh and comes in a tin with a window so you can put your card of the day in view. The Animalis deck is also a fresh vision with lots of bones and unusual compositions.


More decks that hold up for me: the Tarot of Reincarnation is one you have to hunt for the species and some of the names have changed. I have a fuller discussion and small review of it here. It has nothing to do with reincarnation, unless you figure the original illustrations (long out of copyright) have been reincarnated.


I absolutely love both these bird decks, they are definitely treasures both for the art and the variety of images. I rarely use the Medicine Cards but they are neat in their own way. At the time they were published I don’t think there were many animal decks in existence, so it was important.

Ah, the satisfaction of a card comparison after a long break from my cards. It’s like coming out of a desert to drink a glass of ice water. Cool baby.

Happy Sunday!







Roaring Rocks Roll into Action

So where am I today? Clearing out piles and piles of ratty, old clothes that the spouse would not release in the summer. Three green garbage bags went out, and another big garbage bag went to charity. My neighbour came over and took all our plants, which was a bit sad as some of them were over 20 years-old and we had nurtured them from seedlings.

The funny thing I’ve noticed about decluttering is that sometimes you can’t make the decision to let go, but if you leave it for three to six months and go back, it becomes a lot easier to release things. I think it’s because we get overwhelmed with decisions, as if a finite number of decisions for one session of decluttering are available, and then you have to leave it for a time. The other trick is not to look at things and just chuck them out, then it doesn’t bother you at all!

Now I have yet another one foot pile of paper to go through and shred or re-stash. It’s a tedious job but I persevere because one year I had about an eight-foot high pile containing a decade of paper to go through and shred. Now I shred each year and every day for small things like envelopes or junk mail.

Isn’t that absolutely fascinating? Ha-ha. There’s is nothing like a cross-country move to make you blather on about organization interminably. Oh, but we are going to be so much lighter when we go.

And what fascinating remarks does the Tarot have today about all this?

ACE OF PENTACLES (Carved rock)


The rock on the Ace is nestled among growing plants and flowers, rooted in the Earth. Hard work gains big and small rewards. The Pentacles are often about money but they have a great emphasis on the practical too. Yes, get rid of four bags of old clothes before you move, much like clearing away rotting detritus so that plants can grow in Spring.

The Empress has many roles to help the pride survive, and she achieves them. She is roaring at the moon in this card, which reminds me of the moon last night, shining into my bedroom so brightly that I could hardly sleep. It was beautiful and exciting all at the same time.

I expect I’ll sleep better tonight having taken some action on getting organized for our move.


Badger Calls About the Wrong Fabric

Well, he would call wouldn’t he? Badger is an aggressive little guy, charging through life, never backing down.


He received a fabric order yesterday, and had a quick look, but didn’t have time to sort through it properly. Today he took his check list and carefully went through the order, until he got to the piece of toile. Oh toile, be still my excitable heart, it was navy and white and oh so wonderfully delicious, and he pulled it out (firmly with his masculine energy) and said “This doesn’t look right” because it was brown and beige teensy leaves and not toile at all. OH NO, not that, not brown, not beige with little bits of black. Nooooooo…..!!!!!

Heaving slightly, he staggered off to check online and see what horrible abomination of fabric this was instead of the toile he had ordered. You can see by the card, the vortex of panic and confusion he was in.

Pull yourself together Badge!!! Get on that phone and call customer service.

It’s okay, with determination and strength he made the call and they are sending the right fabric. The wrong fabric he can keep because it would cost them more in shipping. And truthfully, the brown and beige fabric could be used on the back of an old quilt he’s been meaning to finish. A nudge from the Universe that projects need to be completed.

I like Badgers.



The Page Slithers Through Procrastination



This is an Emerald Tree Boa looking very adventurous. Transforming his procrastination into the energy to baste that baby quilt, he achieved his goal yesterday. Spilling over into today, he wants to get outside and do something, or at least go and buy some thread for quilting the baby quilt.


Yeah, go for the aqua thread Mr. Boa, I think that might work.





Goat, I See You

My latest ear worm is a song by Quebec band Dumas which can be heard underlying a new television commercial for Liberté Greek Yogurt. I had to look this up and found a snippet on YouTube with a link to an MP3 of the full song. It’s called Quand Je Te Vois  (When I See You.) I very much like the guitar in this.

I was trying to draw this week but it’s so cold in the basement I got the bright idea of making myself a pair of easy fingerless gloves. I’ve had them damp blocking for two days, so they should be ready to sew up today. I got two letters written and these gloves done but not much else.




Standing watch, no one gets in or out. I feel trapped in the house this week. We dropped the price of our house and had 4 viewings but then nothing. Clunk. The walls close in as Autumn cold seeps into my world.

Yesterday was the 40th anniversary of the day we met on a blind date, and we did little but sit in front of the television. I managed to get in a couple hours of respite alone reading a biography of Edna St. Vincent Millay in the living room, and I wrote a 4-page letter, but other then that, I felt like screaming: trapped, crushed, stasis.

One of the reasons I don’t post here much right now is that I’m in quite a down period and don’t like to blather on about it.

This goat is a climber and very good at balance. I think he’s telling me about balance. A perennial reminder for me.

Quand Je Te Vois, lalalala……..





Hey, is that a Tea Towel?

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.