News From the Nest 8/06
Dog Days and Eagle Nights

      I love Minnesota summers, especially the long hours of daylight.  I have a lot of shade in the yard, which is such a different gardening situation from my North Dakota days.  By August I'm not so much the eager gardener as I was in May.  A couple of years ago we decided to turn our sunniest spot into an easy-care retreat.  We wanted native plants, especially the kind that reflect the majority of this family's Native American heritage.  Enter our Medicine Wheel.  The photo on the right was taken in early May.

               

The Medicine Wheel   As you can see, Kathleen's garden grows with silver sage and coneflowers, milkweed for the monarch butterflies and bearberry for traditional Indian tobacco, sweetgrass, wild geranium, wild ginger, little blue stem and other native grasses.  It's TALL now, which lends privacy to a meditational walk around and through the wheel.  My husband retreats here to burn sage and pray.  I happen to love rocks, and we have some dandies around the Medicine Wheel--many of them gifts.  But the daddy of them all is Grandfather Stone.  It's a good-sized boulder with a face that reminds us of an Indian legend about where story-telling came from.  I'll do rocks next time around, but for August, enjoy the bounty of my unique front yard. 

                  

Party Time!  Remember the last MFW-PAN (Midwest Fiction Writers Published Authors Network) meeting I showed you?  We dressed my Barbie dolls in period costumes.  In July we celebrated a couple of VIBs--Very Important Birthdays.  That's me on the left, whaling at the pinata filled with treats for forever-young writers.  And that's birthday girl Mary Bracho, aka Ana Seymour, my teaching partner at the Loft Literary Center.

Next time around I'll have some special teasers for you, all tied up with RIDE A PAINTED PONY, which comes your way in November, and which you can now preorder at discounted rates. 

Got a minute?  View my new 60-second book trailer!

Come back next month for a contest, an excerpt, and stuff I haven't even thought of yet.