Monday, June 30, 2014

Just Another Walk On the Ranch.

Somebody surprised my on my walk this morning.

A young fox. 
Actually it was mama fox that scared me when she screamed at me only about 20 yards away. 
She kept calling to this one who didn't seem quite so nervous.

I decided to walk through the freshly cut hay this morning
and I spotted some wild roses.

As I stepped through a windrow toward the pink blooms,
a sound like a scream, or a screech, a bit like a person...but not really
sucked the breath out of me, I about dropped my camera,
and instantly my heart pounded in my ears.

Mama fox took off.
But this little one didn't seem too alarmed.
A bit like it thought it was hidden.
I had plenty of time to switch lenses on my camera 
from "flower-shooter" to "long-distance shooter".

I could just hear the thoughts of the lil' fox:

"Mom is freaking out, but I'm ok.  I'm hiding behind this flower."

"And this clover is so tall, she can't see me.  I am so sneaky."

"Uh-oh, maybe she can see me..."

Mama yelps again...

Here's mama:

And off lil' fox goes...

and I go back to flowers and birds.

Often I drag my feet about going for the walk,
but Toby, the beagle, encourages me out the door with his excitement.

Toby never heard the foxes because he was too busy smelling them around the hay bales.
Just like he doesn't hear me calling him.

Even though I'm reluctant to go out,
Toby and I are rarely disappointed,
and almost always are surprised by something.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Come on Jodene Rose . . . let's go do something!

So, yesterday,
I shared the following status on my facebook page:

I don't have a middle name.
 I've always liked that. No secret name to hide for people to giggle at . . . just one name.
 My girls, however, have decided to try to give me one.
 E has settled on one in particular. 
Last night, after pelting me one after another with "Mom, mom, mom, maaaam," 
she says to me, "Come on, Jodene Rose, let's go do something." 

So, I've been named "Jodene Rose" or "Jodi Rose" by my daughter.

I thought I'd share the rest of the story.

The "Come on, let's go do something part"

After much "Watch me!!" 
on the bicycle, 
upon which she is thrilled to ride, start, and stop all by herself,
we discovered two nests in our yard.

One in a pine tree.
Another in the spruce we planted the year my Grandpa Tommy passed away.

Mourning doves.

We found the first one when
she flew away as we walked by...
so I got a step stool and stretched my arms up
with the camera 
to get this sweet little peek inside.

She has survived two hailstorms, heavy rain, and of course prairie wind
on this little haphazard nest
that looks like it could easily blow away.

We have also found over 34 heart shaped rocks
{and many other shapes with fun patterns}
in two days.

We marveled at beautiful skies.
Erin snapped photos right alongside me.

And roasted marshmallows in the driveway.

Come on, Jodene Rose, let's go do something...

Reminds me of another time she said,
"I'm gonna go outside and live my life!"

Click this link to see what she did that time:  live my life

Should I expect anything less from the girl, 
at age 2, 
that squirmed and squealed in her car seat 
saying something that at first I couldn't understand,
until I stopped the car to check on her.
At last I understood.
She was scream-squealing, "Wiiiiings!"  
She was trying to free her "wings" from the car seat.
Once I let her arms out,
she was quiet and content.

This is the child
with strong will who freely shares her unfiltered thoughts,
who, at times, drives me crazy with her unbending nature,
yet bravely, honestly, encourages me
to take flight, 
to live life, 
to do 

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Summer Location for Mixed Media Art Classes!

Let me take you on a little virtual tour
of the Hoffman's Rifle Ranch
and the scenery around their guest house
which is the location of my summer mixed media art classes!

The Hoffman's ranch is located south of White Owl, SD, on Corral Road.
Locals know it as the old Two Rivers Ranch,
named because the Belle Fourche River runs into the Cheyenne River.

The scenery is rich with wildlife and prairie grasses and wildflowers.

It is a beautiful mix of prairie grassland dotted with pristine dams and ponds
where mallard ducks lazily and happily swim along 
and cedar filled river breaks hide 
mule deer, antelope, and perhaps occasional bobcats or mountain lions.

Surprisingly some of the breaks are so filled with pines and rock
that you would think you were hiking in the Black Hills.
Appropriately this spot below has been named
"Little Black Hills" by Gina Hoffman.

It may take a significant drive along SD Highway 34 to get to your destination,
but you will be so glad that you adventured here!
It is so beautiful that it is hard for me to believe that Brent and Gina are
sharing the secret of what they have down in these breaks.,
but they get such joy from sharing.

The Hoffman's will be hosting my art classes
and serving lunch or dinner
in their recently built guest house.
Brent and Gina believe in warm hospitality and good food.
They are so excited to share their little corner of the world with us.

This summer, I am leading three mixed media classes
on four days in July.
You can read about them and register here:

Bring your camera!
Being here will be as much of a treat as your art time!
~ * ~

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Prairie Art Adventures. It Is Time!

Hello!  I am still here!
It's time to announce summertime artsy fun for your heart!
I am going to give you a glimpse into this summer's
prairie art adventures through my sketches
and planning notes
so that you can see the
work in progress
of creating a meaningful experience

Here is what I have planned
at a new location that I cannot wait to share with you!
The Hoffman's Rifle Ranch lodge south of White Owl, SD.

Class #1
Wildflower: What I Love About You

WILDFLOWER: What I Love About You

is an art day
for you and one of your favorite kiddos!

You will 
create collage boards for each other
to remind one another
"to bloom uniquely because there is no other person like you".

~ art projects for two ~
~ lunch for two ~
~ a fun photo booth {bring your camera!}~
~ making not only a keepsake, 
but also treasured memories
of time just for you
~ a relaxed lodge atmosphere ~
~ personal touches and nourishment for your soul ~
~ Recommended for ages 5 and up ~
~ Space is limited to 6 pairs ~

Choose your date and time
At Hoffman's Rifle Ranch lodge, White Owl, SD

July 8 ~ 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
July 15 ~ 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Registration: $99 for two

~ This class really works best with one child and one adult. ~

{Registration for a second adult+child couple in the same family is $85.}

Register here 
{Prices are for two people}
Choose your date, then click the buy now button.



Class #2


Life is full of journeys.
Beginning something new.
Pressing on when the road gets rough and uncertain.
Making final steps toward a goal.
It takes faith and courage and lots of learning.

All this goodness for you:
~ Step-by-Step guidance to create a mixed media art piece ~
~ infused with personal meaning for you and your journey ~
~ All art supplies provided ~
~ Beginners encouraged and welcomed! 
~ Everybody is always a beginner at my classes! ~
~ Dinner prepared for you ~
~ Bring your camera! Guided prairie sunset photo walk. ~
~ Relaxed lodge setting ~ 
~ Space is limited to 12 ~
~ Recommended for ages 12 and up ~

Friday, July 11
2:00 - 8:00 p.m.
at Hoffman's Rifle Ranch lodge, White Owl, SD
Registration: $75

Register here:


Class # 3
Roots and Wings


Spend an afternoon and evening artful experience of
honoring lessons from the past,
looking forward to the future
really living in the present.

In this intimate lodge setting,
you will decorate a journal cover
with papers and decoupage, paint, inks, ribbons and more.
You will also insert prompts, quotes, thoughts, verses,
into your journal designed 
to honor a loved one or a season in your life.

Enjoy the following:
~ Step-by-step guidance ~ 
~ Create a mixed media collage journal cover ~
~ Dinner prepared for you ~
~ Peaceful, intimate lodge setting ~
~ Bring your camera! (Even a phone!) ~
~ Guided photo walk finding beauty in everyday life ~
~ All art supplies provided ~
~ Small group limited to 12 ~
~ Gentle nourishment for your heart ~
~ Beginners and "non-creatives" encouraged and welcome! ~
~ Recommended for ages 12 and up ~

Friday, July 18
2:00 - 8:00 p.m.
Hoffman's Rifle Ranch lodge, White Owl, SD
Registration: $75

Register here:

Contact me with questions
or to register by mail:

Jodene Shaw
PO Box 82
White Owl, SD 57792