Category Archives: Rattles


“Your body is a spiritual tool. Appreciate the miracle that it is.”                     ~  Swami Radha

My body found its way into Kurmasana in this mornings practice, one of my favorite poses.  As I rounded my spine, folding forward to become the tortoise my mind flashed back to my teachers Swami Radhakrishnananda, then Deborah and then Charles.  The beginning of consciousness and spiritual awakening – studying myself through yoga.

Settling into the asana, hips release.  Noticing the depth and ease of my breath.  Lengthening the curve of my spine, soles together, chest nearly touching the floor, forehead rests against heels, arms extending until my hands become flippers.  I am at rest, buoyant on the water of our Mother.  Tears fill my eyes.  Water is life, it courses through me.  I feel deep connection.  No separation.   The wisdom of the tortoise allows me to see myself from above through her eyes – see myself as Light, as Water.  I am both star stuff and from the earth’s molten core.  I am the water.  I send up a blessing for the Water – protection and restored health, for its purity.

I relax even more into the pose.  My breath slows.  I can feel my heart beating, the electromagnetic force of love.  My mind moves gently, tracing the path to this moment.  Eastern philosophy comes full circle to Turtle Island.  Grandmother Turtle, my home.  I am at home within my skin.  My shell (home) a place to pull into and a place to extend out from.  Safe.

I survey my entire body.  Can I relax further?  Can I deepen still?  Can I know myself as the wise tortoise, as the Mother, not only in this moment but into every moment?  I’d like to stay this way forever.  I allow myself a few more minutes – breathing, at peace, mind still knowing I am in the right place.  Precious silence.

Regretfully I must move.  Thankfully I am moving towards medicine crafting.  Buffalo awaits, a client soon to arrive, new rattles are coming forward.  More gifts from our Mother, from our brethren.  I feel incredibly supported, connected and free.  In gratitude.  Om…

Mitakuye Oyasin  ~  All My Relations

I’m Hearing Voices

Rocking gently. A tremble at first.  Steady.  Dropping in, a rhythm takes over. The sound of the stones striking rawhide. Rolling off the internal surface of the skin, the stones trill and growl.  A soothing voice calling me deeper.  Shaking the rattle I journey.  Seeking. 

I have been sewing rattles for several days, give-aways for a sister and friend.  Many people in our community are helping to fill her blanket offering, as she is honors her commitment to dance her prayers.  Sewing my own prayers into these rattles, I am hearing voices – in my head and my heart.  Making medicine is a powerful time.

All my sense perception are engaged in the crafting.  Consciousness and unconsciousness communes with the Mystery and the invisible.  My sense of touch a constant from beginning to end.  The sense of smell alighted with the various tree medicines.  And wet buffalo hide, patiently yielding into form, drying into shape, an evolving fragrance.  My eyes see what has become while I held the needle.  My heart is tantalized by stones, the three sisters – what will my ears hear?  What voices will be  coming through?   I can taste the healing, sweet elixir of buffalo on my finger tips.  Thinking of the good vibrations these rattle will send… more prayers from someone else’s heart – a spiral dance, the Circle widens.  We are one.

No two rattle are alike.

Questers will sew  their medicine rattles this weekend for their time on the hill.  Will the forecaster’s promise of sunshine hold true?  Can we sit by the lake sewing our prayers with the water and breeze, the bird song?  There will be many voices will accompany us, whether we are outside or in.

May 3, 2015 a rawhide rattle crafting workshop is open.   Perhaps a turtle shell rattle is calling you.  Let’s co-create a time together.

From the Iroquois creation legend of Sky Woman come the story of the Three Sisters – it was love that kept them together and it is love that creates their voice.   To the Iroquois People, corn, beans, and squash are the physical and spiritual sustainers of life.   ~  “A long time ago there were three sisters who lived together in a field. These sisters were quite different from one another in their size and way of dressing. The little sister was so young that she could only crawl at first, and she was dressed in green. The second sister wore a bright yellow dress, and she had a way of running off by herself when the sun shone and the soft wind blew in her face. The third was the eldest sister, standing always very straight and tall above the other sisters and trying to protect them. She wore a pale green shawl, and she had long, yellow hair that tossed about her head in the breeze.”

Let it be love that keeps us all together.  Love will light the way.

With gratitude.  Gather Light.

Mitakuye Oyasin  ~  All My Relations


Spring 2015 Workshops

The door is always open.  Come in, make yourself at home as you are welcome for the Spring Workshops at Soul Proprietor.

April 4 – Wing Medicine, noon until complete

April 5 – Leather Works, noon until complete, what do you need?

April 11 – The Night Turtle Dance Fund Raiser Auction, 5pm – 8pm

April 12 – Rattle Crafting, 10am until complete

April 25 – Medicine Bag Journey, noon until complete

April 26 – VQ Rattle Crafting (closed)

May 3 – Medicine Repair Day, noon until all repairs are complete

May 9 – Children’s Circle, 1pm – 5pm

May 10 – Drum Birthing Day, 10am until complete

May 16-17 – Moccasin Workshop – Bainbridge Island Bodhi Center

May 23-24 – VQ Moccasin Workshop (closed)

June 6 – Children’s Circle, 1pm – 5pm

June 7 – Turtle Shell Rattle Crafting, noon until complete

June 20-21 – Moccasin Workshop, 10am -7pm each day

Concentric Circles

“Starting from within, working in a circle, in a sacred manner, we heal ourselves, our relationships and the world.”  ~  Chief Phil Lane, Jr.

Dense.  Fog.   Not the dark mercury fog of deep winter.  Instead a thick membrane of white-gray.  Seeming impenetrable while the light is already beginning to suffuse the placenta birthing this day.  Silhouettes emerging.  A circle.  The Standing Nation, tall, shoulder to shoulder.  The semi-round waxing moon had been present very early this morning, casting light onto Echo Lake, now she is on the other side of the fog.  Only milky white, shadows in the distance.   The lake is an altar.  It is a circle before me every day.  Surrounded by the circle of trees. The concentric circles begin within me, working their way out into the world.

Offering prayers to the North, to what remains of a non-winter, the trees tell me to go to the core of things within myself.  I go seeking to understand what lay beneath.  What is the motivation?  What are the emotions?  What is at the heart of me?  At  my very core?  Often in the forest I find pieces of wood that are just that, the core, the place of connectivity, of a branch growing from trunk.  I’ve kept some, one particular piece was sanded smooth becoming a talking stick for the Children’s Circle.  There are many circles – symbolic, metaphoric and physical in this reality that are part of my life.

Many circles.   Circle of life.  The circle of the seasons.  The astrological wheel a continuous circle.  Many Sacred Circles of Peoples.  The hoop of a family.  The hoop of a drum.   The waft of a feather fan, begins in the circle of a nest, sage smoke moves out into the Universe.   The round of a rattle allowing the contents to emanate voice.  A stone tossed into the lake creates ripples that move, even if interrupted, to the shoreline, meeting that circle of earth surrounding the circle of lake.  It is all connected.  Concentric circles.   Starting from within.  Working in a circle.  In a sacred manner.

The work at Soul Proprietor happens in a circle.  A container created by prayer, by intention and by the people who come to create.  Over the years numerous Teachers have begun to send their students to me, to craft in a good way their ceremonial and sacred objects.  Each of these Teachers carry a unique piece of a healing perspective.  I integrate these threads of wisdom into my life, woven fabric.  This past Sunday another new Circle, eight beautiful women came to birth drums.  The guidance that came forward for me to share with them was to learn the sacred songs, using their drums to send up a voice.  A healing.  Their teacher is one who carries the songs.  Their hearts begin the circle.  Starting from within.  Working in a circle.  In a sacred manner.   We heal ourselves.  Our relationships.  And the world.

I am filled with gratitude.

Brother Phil asked me and the entire Circle to memorize the opening quote to this post.  He asked also that we live it.  Make it our walk in the world.  With it comes so much honesty, so much hope, optimism.  I am inspired.  The fog has lifted completely, the pale blue sky boldly colors the water.  Trees reflect their strong imprint on the surface of the lake – their crowns pointing towards me – look within to the core of things they say.  Starting within.  Working in a circle.

I have an old dog who is preparing to cross over.  She still has all four feet in this reality and she is preparing, closing in on completion of the circle that is her life.  Somewhere a litter of Doberman puppies are gestating.  My father’s wife is preparing too, for her own transition, dancing between life, disease and death.  And a baby will be born.  Each life begins and ends – a circle, complete within itself and a part of the whole.  My heart is both heavy and full, buoyed by these ways of living and working in a circle.

A’ho Mitakuye Oyasin  ~  All My Relations

Soul Proprietor’s Winter Workshop Schedule

“There is no difference between the Creator and creation, just as there is no difference between the ocean and its waves.”  ~  Amma

Calling all seekers and artists.  Come.  Have fun.  Craft in a sacred manner – medicine objects – tools for your practices at home and at work, tools for your rituals and ceremonies.  Bring your good intentions.  Come and create just for the sake of creating.  Working with animal, plant, and mineral medicine is joyful, it centers and teaches in surprising ways.  A workshop day slows our pace  and can create peace of mind – an extra gift to yourself.

Working together in a good way – there is something quite special about sitting in a circle, with community.  One heart.  One mind.  Each working individually yet together.  Spiraling up.  Gathering light.  What is needed to support you at this time?  What is calling to you?

Mitakuye Oyasin  ~  All My Relations

January 2015
10 The Ceremonialist Children’s Circle
11 Wing Medicine Learning Workshop
17 Drum Birthing Day
18 Turtle Rattle Crafting Learning Workshop
24 Drum Birthing with Soul Sisters (closed)
25 Wing Medicine with Regine della Luna (closed)

February 2015
8 Wing Medicine Learning Workshop
14 The Ceremonialist Children’s Circle
15 Rattle Crafting Learning Workshop
21 Drum Birthing with Soul Sisters (closed)
28 Drum Birthing @ Bodhi Center (Bainbridge Island)

March 2015
1 Wing Medicine Learning Workshop
8 Drum Birthing with Hazelnut Circle (closed)
14 The Ceremonials Children’s Circle
15 Drum Birthing Day
22 Rattle Crafting Learning Workshop
28 Moccasin Crafting Learning Workshop Day 1
29 Moccasin Crafting Learning Workshop Day 2

SOI’s 7th Annual Artist Fair

Gratitude is the theme of this years Sundust Oracle Institute’s Artist’s Fair!  What a tremendous place of focus as I work and prepare for this show.  Every stitch, each knot is tied with intention – GRATITUDE!

The Winter Solstice will be a celebration of art, entertainment, music, poetry, readings, food, silent auction, solstice ceremony and a dance party!  Come!  Celebrate with old friends, make new acquaintances, shop for last-minute holiday gifts with purpose.  The Artist are all local people committed to a path of spirit oriented work that serves the greater good.

The Factory Luxe  ~ 3100 Airport Way South, Seattle WA 98134  Sunday, December 21 ~ 11am~8pm, plenty of free parking available.

Soul Proprietor will be bringing a variety of medicine objects – feather fans, rattles, drums, baby moccasin, staffs and talking sticks.  Every piece of work crafted with intention, holding the feeling of gratitude, connecting consciously with the physical sensations, the emotional experiences and the earnest desire to share – to pass it on so that gratitude might live within each of us, full-time.  While I’ve been working and holding this way of being in my heart, I’ve been reminded of The Night Turtle Dance – the dance is a ceremony of gratitude.  Mother Earth is so generous, all our needs are met and then some by her multitude of offerings.  The medicine I have been working with, all a gift of the Earth – Winged Ones, Four-leggeds,  Standing Ones, Water Beings and the Stone Nation – each have been prayed for and now prayed with that whoever is drawn to each piece receives the gift of gratitude as well as the gift of our Mother.

I have offered  my own gratitude to All the Nations I have been working with.  I am fortunate to receive such abundance, medicine for my own life and process.  Blessings and Boons!  Wopila!

I’ll be measuring feet for the durable moccasin I am sewing too.  These shoes are custom fit for your feet.  While I am taking measurements at the show, they will be crafted in the Studio afterwards – first come, first served.

And a bit of photography just for fun!

Mitakuye Oyasin  ~  All My Relations

Workshops & Circles ~ Autumn 2014 Schedule

The Ceremonialist Children’s Circle

September 13, 2014 ~ noon to 4pm
Join in this open circle to celebrate the coming Autumnal Equinox.  Open to girls and boys ages 9 to 13, both moms and dads are welcome.  We will honor the abundance of the season and the turning of the wheel here at Echo Lake. Email Barbara for details on what to anticipate and what to bring for sharing.

Rattle Crafting Workshop

September 14, 2014 ~ noon until complete
In this workshop you will learn to craft a rawhide rattle that will be perfect for clearing energy, for meditation and journey work, for calling up your allies.  Craft with horse, deer, elk, bear or buffalo hide, using cedar, fir, driftwood, bone or antler as your handle.
Register to attend this workshop or email Barbara for details.

Wing Medicine Workshop

September 20, 2014 ~ noon until complete
Learn to use smudge for clearing and cleansing with a feather fan. Craft a medicine wing to use in your personal or professional practice that serves your needs at this time. Wing Medicine is a powerful way to tend to the energetic needs of the mind, body and spirit of the individual, family, office and community.
Register to attend this workshop or email Barbara for details.

Drum Birthing Workshop 

September 27, 2014 ~ 10am until complete
What is calling you – deer? elk? bear? buffalo? horse?  Each voice is unique, the power of the four-legged is immeasurable.  The Standing Ones give us a sacred hoop that holds the hide yet it does not contain it – instead it is a vehicle that gives rise to voice and one of its purposes in the world.  Use a Shaman style hand-drum for journey work, for meditation, for the joy of it. Register to attend this workshop or email Barbara for details.

New @ The Bodhi Center on Bainbridge Island       

Drum Birthing Workshop – October 11, 2014

Rattle Crafting Workshop – November 23, 2014

These workshops are being taught at the beautiful and tranquil Bainbridge Bodhi Center on Bainbridge Island, WA.  These two workshops are being offered at a special reduced rate.  Space is limited.  Register to birth a drum and register to craft a rattle on this website or email Barbara for details.

The Ceremonialist’s Children Circle

October 12, 2014 – 11am – 4pm

Hard to say what sort of fun and adventure we’ll have this day but we will for certain!  There’ll be sweetness and ceremony, outdoors and discovery.  Come and see for yourselves!

Moccasin Crafting Workshop       

October 18 & 19, 2014 ~ 10am to 8pm each day
This two-day workshop is a great time in community sewing moccasin that are just for your feet!  These hand crafted one of a kind moccasin are sewn from the hide of the buffalo who will support your walk in the world with sweet guardianship. You will have a pair of moccasin you won’t want to take off. Register to attend this workshop or email Barbara for details.

Feeding the Fire Ceremony   

November 7, 2014 ~ 4pm until 9pm
This circle is a celebration of the feminine open to any girls that are nearing their moon time and beyond.  Invited are Mothers, Aunties, Grandmothers or any other Woman who is supporting this girl as she grows into a young woman.  Our time together is a common narrative of what it means to be in the skin of a woman, a sacred feminine being.  We share a place at the fire with stories, songs and respect. A simple and healthy shared meal honors our ceremony.  Email Barbara for details.

Experiential Gifting

In our consumer driven society, where most of us truly have far more things than we need – an experiential gift is both meaningful and worthwhile.

A Soul Proprietor Learning Workshop is a gift of significance.  Each time we come together to craft, we create purpose, intention and substance.  Whether for a celebration occasion like birthdays and anniversaries or to deepen time with family and community – a children’s day, girlfriend time, male bonding, new babies, emotional and spiritual healing or for no reason at all – schedule a time to immerse yourself and your intended  in a positively influential endeavor.  The time spent together creating is a lasting gift – wing medicine for smudging, a talking stick for council,  a drum to journey with, a rattle or custom fit moccasin crafting – a gift that can alter life in a good way for many years to come.

The experience of a medicine gift nurtures the mind, body and spirit of the one receiving as well as the one who gives the gift, the medicine working in subtle and mysterious ways.

Gift for the joy of it!

Blessings for your good health, happy and whole hearts and all the help you might need…. Aho Mitakuye Oyasin!