Treasures, Treasuries, and Thoughts

I swore I would never do a blog! So much for swearing. I didn't think that I would have much to say or share. I was wrong! I have been so blessed with a wonderful family, loyal friends, sharing colleagues, and the support from so many that I will never run out of topics to write about.

I have opened an on-line store at a place called Etsy (rhymes with Betsy). The items on the left are available for purchase there. These will change from week to week to show you my latest creations. The link to the store is in the upper left corner of this page.

I also have items for sale listed on Art Fire. The link to my Art Fire Studio is

I hope you will visit this blog, my Flickr page ( and my Etsy and/or Art Fire stores often. (

So come along on my Trail of Treasures! It will be a Spirit Journey for me and I invite you to join me on the trip.

Sunday, November 30, 2008


  • Here it is the week end of Thanksgiving. This should be a time for celebrating the abundant bounties of our earth and the blessings we all enjoy. Instead, I received a troubling e-mail this morning from one of my Native friends. It motivated me to write this blog.
  • On November 27, 2008, the Western Shoshone gathered in solidarity to oppose the cutting of sacred pinion trees at the spiritual Mount Tenabo in Nevada. The Barrick Gold Company is planning one of the nation’s largest open pit gold mines known as the Cortez Hills Expansion Project on the flank of the mountain. A restraining order has been filed by the tribe and supporters of environmental issues in Reno, NV against the construction of the proposed mine site.
  • Unable to wait for the hearing that is scheduled for early next week and the mine's continual slaughter of the pinion forest, the Western Shoshone grandmothers and supporters traveled to the site, demanding Barrick to stop cutting the sacred pinon trees. Barrick Gold employees ignored the Shoshones' demand that they cease cutting. Those gathered witnessed piles of pinion and other trees strewn across the landscape and in the unfenced and now polluted ponds.
  • "If people can eat or drink gold to sustain life, maybe we can call it a sacrifice of the life of trees, trees that gives us pine nuts and other medicinal uses," stated Carrie Dann, Western Shoshone grandmother and Executive Director of the Western Shoshone Defense Project.
  • The Western Shoshone have lived in the area of Mount Tenabo since the beginning of time. Today it is the homelands to local Shoshones and continues to be the home to Shoshone creation stories, spirit life, medicinal foods and plants as well as a site for spiritual and ceremonial practices. Mount Tenabo is part of the ancestral lands that has been identified and recognized as Western Shoshone territory through the ratification of the Treaty of Ruby Valley between the Western Shoshone and the United States.
  • "The mining company and the Bureau of Land Management are trespassing on the Western Shoshone treaty land and are destroying our mountains, trees, food, medicine and leaving dirty polluted water ponds that are wide open making it unsafe to the birds and animals. Why doesn't the mining company go dig up the Vatican or the Mormon Tabernacle instead of Western Shoshone lands? I'm sure they will find gold there, because this is what you are doing to our mountains and trees," stated Mary McCloud, another Western Shoshone grandmother.
  • As the Shoshone grandmothers witnessed the devastation on their Sacred Mountain, rain began to fall. "The tears of the Mother," said oneGrandmother.
  • We should be careful about what we treasure. I think that Chief Seattle said it best:
"The earth does not belong to man,
man belongs to the Earth.
This we know.
Man did not weave the web of life,
he is merely a strand in it.
Whatever he does to the web,
he does to himself.
All things are connected.
Whatever befalls the Earth,
befalls the children of the Earth."
..............................................................Chief Seattle, 1854

When will it stop? Broken treaties and false promises. What are our values? Is your word not your bond? Is religion and spirituality to be ignored unless it is yours? What do we treasure? Can you eat gold or heal the sick with it? When the land is destroyed, what will we eat? When the water is polluted, what will we drink? What do you treasure? Be careful when you answer this and then protect it with all of your might and give Thanks for it!


AltheaP said...

I wish there was some way to drill into each school child's head and heart: think first how your every thought and action will impact the seventh generation.

(I know that's not the exact quote, but I hope I get it across.)

jstinson said...

Althea, I fear it is too late. It is our generation who seems hell bent to destroy the earth! And our children will learn what they see. I hope that it is not too late, but it is sometimes difficult to remain optimistic in the face of the world around us.

Sixsisters said...

It brings me to tears to witness and hear about the
greed of men . I am sorry that his is happening
again and again as it has so many times.
Chief Seattle had it so right.

maryeb said...

Wonderful post. It really gave me pause; to think about what is really important to me. I hope it's not too late for us to save what is truly of value to all of us.

That's a lovely quote too. Thanks for sharing it.

joonbeam said...

That has always been one of my favorite quotes, Joni. I am so sad to learn of this, yet another preposterous, tragedy. I have always advocated for my children, which may seem small, but if everyone focused more energy right under their own roofs, what a better world we would see. My own results are significant. All three sons work in 'clean' employment, doing socially conscientious work that makes a difference for us and the future. They are respectful, helpful, caring & empathetic. They add to this life. I believe in the ripple effect. It works both ways. Start one wave or the other.

On another note, I have a story about a man who planted an entire forest by himself sneaking onto land at night after work for years because the powers that be were ignorant fools. There will always be people like this man. Maybe his story should be required reading in every school.

ox to you all & I hope for better news on your update, Joni.

jstinson said...

Thanks to all of you who care enough to leave a comment! All of the comments are heart felt and most appreciated. Mvto and Wa-do!