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.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Obama Declares National Native American Month!

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The indigenous peoples of North America -- the First Americans -- have woven rich and diverse threads into the tapestry of our Nation's heritage. Throughout their long history on this great land, they have faced moments of profound triumph and tragedy alike. During National Native American Heritage Month, we recognize their many accomplishments, contributions, and sacrifices, and we pay tribute to their participation in all aspects of American society.

This month, we celebrate the ancestry and time-honored traditions of American Indians and Alaska Natives in North America. They have guided our land stewardship policies, added immeasurably to our cultural heritage, and demonstrated courage in the face of adversity. From the American Revolution to combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan, they have fought valiantly in defense of our Nation as dedicated servicemen and women. Their native languages have also played a pivotal role on the battlefield. During World Wars I and II, Native American code talkers developed unbreakable codes to communicate military messages that saved countless lives. Native Americans have distinguished themselves as inventors, entrepreneurs, spiritual leaders, and scholars. Our debt to our First Americans is immense, as is our responsibility to ensure their fair, equal treatment and honor the commitments we made to their forebears.

The Native American community today faces huge challenges that have been ignored by our Government for too long. To help address this disparity, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act allocates more than $3 billion to help these communities deal with their most pressing needs. In the Fiscal Year 2010 budget, my Administration has proposed over $17 billion for programs carried out by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Indian Health Service, and other Federal agencies that have a critical role to play in improving the lives of Native Americans. These programs will increase educational opportunities, address the scourge of alcohol abuse and domestic violence, promote economic development, and provide access to comprehensive, accessible, and affordable health care. While funding increases do not make up for past deficiencies, they do reflect our determination to honor tribal sovereignty and ensure continued progress on reservations across America.

As we seek to build on and strengthen our nation-to-nation relationship, my Administration is committed to ensuring tribal communities have a meaningful voice in our national policy debates as we confront the challenges facing all Americans. We will continue this constructive dialogue at the White House Tribal Nations Conference held in Washington, D.C., this month. Native American voices have echoed through the mountains, valleys, and plains of our country for thousands of years, and it is now our time to listen.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim November 2009 as National Native American Heritage Month. I call upon all Americans to commemorate this month with appropriate programs and activities, and to celebrate November 27, 2009, as Native American Heritage Day.

Mvto and Wa-do (Thank you in Creek and Cherokee) Mr. President.


Renée Gandy said...

Now I would like to see this promoted as Black History month is

jstinson said...

Renee, that would be nice. But it is probably up to us to promote as we can.

Renée Gandy said...

I am sure you are right..I told my 14 y/o daughter to go to school and tell her 'Ameircan History' class ..She's very interested in her native history..of all my children she is the only one who honors the ancestors..

MagdaleneJewels said...

What a beautiful commendation recognizing Native Americans and how much they are a part of American history. So few people realize the many contributions they have made to our culture. I think it is wonderful how you embrace that history through your jewelry and the other many activities you participate in. I think everyone should read the book "The Mayflower" the true story is nothing like they try to portray in American History books. I myself was amazed at how much the Native American's are rooted in the history of our Country.

Renée Gandy said...

I aksed our local tv stations in Memphis,Tn to do a piece on far I have not heard back..surprised..NO..

Schar Freeman said...

Tears filled my eyes reading this declaration of President Obama. He is the first president for many things and this is one of the most important beginnings for our people. Not just a day but an entire month is what I have voiced my entire life.

Now visioning the 204 "Terminated Tribes" to be re-instated seems like it may also be a reality.

Mahalo nui loa President Obama and thank you Joni for making this a historical and herstorical month!!!
♥schar (Wintu)

ccriqui2004 said...

It has been a while since I have felt this proud of my President. It is shaping up to be a very cheerful month!

Diana said...

This is an indeed historic and long overdue moment for our country. May the creator bless our brave and wise president.

Giftbearer said...

Way to go! It seems like Native Americans have been the "invisible minority" for far too long. When I was in what was supposed to be a very diverse college I got so tired of being considered "white" because I wasn't black even after I had told people my heritage (and seeing as I get mistaken all the time for Hispanic and people always ask me where I come from I don't really look white).

Maybe this is the beginning of some real improvement now that Obama has made this public statement.

Artist Tree said...

I tried to read highlights out loud to my husband but when I got to, "NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America," I got too emotional. :) Caught me off balance. Next Thanksgiving, I promise, no more ranting of social injustice from me! Thank you for sharing this in your blog.

Sunny Bower Art Studio said...

Very cool.

Prior to election President Obama promised the Native People that he would "not forget them" if he was elected. He hasn't. Thank you for sharing this!