Sunday, March 31, 2013


łuʔ qe xʷuy č' canada, qe ciqntm t'ulmn lšeʔ n hecšn'esšn.

 łiʔe hecšn'esšn ep sč'iłt u xʷeʔit łuʔ nxpxpmew'sc.

nk'ʷuʔ łuʔ hec šit u hec kʷʔermi n hecšn'esšn. 

čn t'łt'iłčst l' t'ulmn.

qe tixʷm t nmosqsm t'ulmn - kʷil, kʷri, piq, u q'ʷay.


Spring break did not match for Rhonda and me, so I took my daughters on a short trip to southern British Columbia while she finished school work. Our first stop was the Spirit Ridge in Osoyoos, which is a tribal-owned, luxury resort on the edge of town. We stayed the night in a two-bedroom suite with a full kitchen, a gas fireplace, and a balcony with an awesome view. The girls especially enjoyed a night swim in the heated pool, while I enjoyed the steam room. 

In particular, I appreciated the indigenous influence, like the signs written in Salish. 

After leaving the resort, we took the opportunity to view Spotted Lake from the highway. Spotted Lake derives its name from mineral deposits that mark the surface. It is considered a sacred site by the local tribes and is restricted to non-Natives. 

We did not actually approach the lake during our visit, but we did appreciate its beauty from a distance. 

Our friend Shelly brought us to visit a tribal elder who told traditional stories in the Salish language. Afterwards, he brought us to see some of the sites associated with the stories. From time to time, he stopped along the roadside to offer spontaneous lessons in traditional medicine. 

We also stopped to see pictographs. 


The other day, I was driving home from Sandpoint after a Twin Eagles event, and just as I was about to pass through Newport, I happened to look over and see this mural on the side of a building. My reaction surprised me. Much like the Obama-McCain piece from several years ago (see below), I felt compelled to stop and interact with the art in some way. In fact, my emotional response was stronger now that I know the artists. 

This experience gave me a sense of gratitude for the power of art. It is unlikely that I will ever get to meet Obama, Romney, or McCain, but these paintings capture the spirit of our times and give us a living connection to our own history. These artists are magicians in their own right. They reflect something from our inner selves and not simply what is seen with human eyes.   

This is my small tribute to the artists. 

Obama-Romney 2012. 

Obama-McCain from 2008. 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013


in q'eneʔ Lucy Peuse, 
painted with watercolor pencil. 

in ner'uyeʔ Steven Moses,
also painted with watercolor pencil.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Aladdin Audition

Dakota auditioned for Disney's Aladdin at CYT Spokane. The cast list will be released on Monday afternoon. Wish him luck on getting a part. Stay tuned. 



Carole and her family took pictures at Duncan Gardens. 
These were some of my favorites. 

Carole and her mom.

Tropical flowers in the greenhouse. 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

TEDxCCS Audition

Several weeks ago, my friend and co-worker Grace Leaf said, "I wanted to let you know that you're auditioning for TEDx at CCS."

I managed a fairly eloquent response, "Huh?" 

Jim Mohr happened to pass by at that moment and said, "Oh yeah, you're auditioning. Get over it." Grace and Jim thoroughly ignored my protests and signed me up. That was the day of the IEL Fashion Show

So today was the day of the audition and I was all nerves. 

I locked myself in my office and wrote a two-minute speech about saving endangered languages. I must have practiced that thing a hundred times, and it never seemed exactly right. I continued to practice when I arrived at the SCC campus. After everything, I had to walk onto that stage and present my "brilliant and inspirational" idea, while a panel of three judges sat behind a table and took notes. Whatever happens, I have renewed empathy for my children when they stand before the judges to audition for CYT shows. 

Speaking of which, my children's CYT friend just happened to pass by at the moment of my audition. I told her what was happening and she agreed to be my one-person cheering section. (Thanks Dimana!)

They should announce the results within a couple weeks. If I am selected, I will work with a speech coach over the next several months and then present a refined, 8-10 TED style speech. Wish me luck and stay tuned. 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Robert Fulton Clough

Robert Fulton Clough
Click image to enlarge.
Earlier today, I received an old newspaper article related to my family history.  

I have long known that my ancestor Robert Fulton Clough died in Iowa in 1908, but I have never been able to locate an obituary, a death certificate, or even a burial site. Records have been just plain difficult to find. That all changed when Judy Hanson emailed a scanned copy of a newspaper article detailing Robert's death. The article states in full: 

At about ten o’clock last Saturday morning (November 21, 1908) R. F. Clough was found dead in his bed at the home of Mrs. James Stewart. Mrs. Stewart had called him several times, but receiving no response, she called in D. E. Harvey, who went to the room of Mr. Clough with the above result. Coroner Swezey was called, and after an investigation of the room, decided that an inquest was unnecessary as an empty laudanum bottle on the stand plainly pointed to suicide. No direct cause for the rash act is known. Mr. Clough was born in Vermont in 1840, was married to Nancy Millington (Billington is the correct spelling) in Wisconsin in 1862. The wife preceded her husband to the great beyond about eight years. Unto them was born four children, one boy Harvey, and three girls, Mrs. L. H. Lee, Mrs. W. C. Winn, and Mrs. Floyd Kaufman. Funeral services were held from the residence of Chas. Winn. The body was interred at Waucoma (Iowa) by the side of his wife.

Published in the Decorah Republican
Thursday, November 26, 1908

I added a few notes to the original text, mostly for clarification. For example, Nancy Billington's name was misspelled in the article. Also, the date of death would have occurred on November 21, 1908. 

Of Robert's children, my ancestor was Nettie Clough, or as the article stated, Mrs. Lewis Hazard Lee. 

Laudanum was an opium tincture that was sold over the counter during the 19th century for all kinds of ailments. Laudanum addiction was common, as were accidental overdoses. In fact, I find it surprising that the coroner mention in the article assumed that Robert's death was the result of suicide. It would seem impossible to know if Robert intended to die or if he accidentally overdosed. I suppose we'll never know.

In any case, many thanks to Judy Hanson for sending this article.

Click on image to enlarge. 

Monday, March 11, 2013

Van Gogh

Spent another evening with Van Gogh and Merlot,
and this time we actually copied a Van Gogh piece.  

Ulysses demonstrating a painting technique. 

My finished work. 

I managed to paint my hands along with the canvas. 
I actually think this photograph is better than the painting. 


My auntie Iva celebrated her 69th birthday at the Spokane Tribal Longhouse where the family gathered in support, shared a meal, and sang songs on the drum. It was a beautiful day. 

These are my favorite pictures of that day. I will post more soon. 

Sunday, March 10, 2013


Vi received a copy of my Lucy Finley print. 

She placed several bids on the print during the silent auction at this year's Salish Conference, but she didn't get the highest bid. As it turns out, she had a deep personal connection to Lucy, so my friend Shelly arranged for Vi to get her own print. 

Vi was very happy to receive this gift. 


On Saturday,
we had a birthday celebration
with family and friends. 

Rhonda & Dakota
made two cakes
to hold all
forty-two candles. 

Mom and grandma... 
Love these ladies. 

Sunday, March 03, 2013


The warmth of the sun lifted my spirits this afternoon;
the blue sky cleared my mind. 

It is the promise of a returning spring. 

The buds of trees ready to bloom. 


Related Posts with Thumbnails