art is knowing ~ art is healing ~ art is playful FUN!

reading with heART

stories within

reading with heART

Stories Within is a rich and engaging creative process that weaves a love of books, story and the expressive arts.

By blending the power of art and story, we can travel alongside those tales and adventures already written, explore unfamiliar terrain, and learn the language of the soul. We can pick up breadcrumbs along the way that illuminate connections to our own life story. And when portals and doorways to sense- and meaning-making appear, we can seize the opportunity to create possibilities for transformation, healing and re-storying to occur.

Our stories are woven into the tapestry of a greater story…always moving, ever unfolding.  

We enter into a story through the door of inner hearing. If a story is seed, then we are its soil.
Just hearing the story allows us to experience it as though we ourselves were the heroine who either falters or wins out in the end.

If we hear a story about a wolf, then afterward we rove about and know like a wolf for a time.
If we hear a story about a dove finding her young at last, then for a time after, something moves behind our own feathered breasts.
If it be a story of wresting the sacred pearl from beneath the claw of the ninth dragon, we feel exhausted afterward, and satisfied.

In a very real way, we are imprinted with knowing just by listening to the tale."

~ Dr. Clarissa Pinkoka Estes
Path Fairy

Since the beginning of time, story-telling has been a way to teach, learn, and transform self and others by way of the lessons and wisdom gained through personal experience and the world around us.

Everything has a story to tell: exploring them reveals themes and feelings we can all relate to – love, hope, uncertainty, fear, obstacles, triumphs and more. The hero’s journey – a story pattern explored and written about by Joseph Campbell in The Hero With A Thousand Faces, is a familiar theme in the stories we read, hear about, and watch in movies and television.

It’s also our own story, and in the telling helps us recognize our shared stories and understanding of life. 

I invite you to step IN to story…


Stories Within isn’t just a book group –

it’s so much more!

This is FOR you if:

  • you enjoy reading a book or story that invites a deeper dive; an opportunity to explore meaning, generate questions and connections to your life story;
  • you are curious how art and the creative process can nurture, empower, heal and guide you;
  • the idea of combining your love of reading with expressive art making intrigues you;
  • you long to do this courageous and tender soul-work with other women who will listen and honour your story.


Join us for a story-based, creative journey  – discovering, listening, and giving voice to your own deep wisdom – then gathering the pieces to create a visual story and keepsake book of your own.

Books we’ve read in the past, and my visual response to the stories within:

Belonging Collage SW
Dancing Collage SW
Enchanted Collage SW
Creatrix Collage SW
Leaf divider

Here’s what past participants have to say:

What will you do?

  • Read each chapter to mine the gold within, diving into the depths of the story to retrieve signs, symbols, and connections;
  • Ask questions and engage in juicy conversations about the topics and themes, noticing how the stories relate and intersect with your own and others shared experiences;
  • Tap into and engage the imaginal realms to re-write new stories of empowerment, courage, healing, and renewal;
  • Express yourself both creatively and playfully;
  • Experience this story-walking, soul-tending workshop with a circle of women.


Stories Within is

story medicine for your Soul.

Winter 2023 Book Selection:


From the back cover:
"As Connie Zweig points out in her deep and comprehensive book, it isn't easy to age well when a human life is seen as a problem to be solved. In this time of rapid change, we need more of an inner experience. This valuable book will help you sort out what is important in life from what is a distraction. Getting old is a challenge, but it can be a joy." ~ Thomas Moore

This book offers tools and guidance to help you let go of past roles, expand your identity, deepen self-knowledge, and move through these life passages to a new stage of awareness, choosing to be fully real, transparent, and free to embrace a fulfilling late life.

Please note that although the books and content discussed can be an opportunity for deep inner work, this is not therapy. Rather, it's a supportive environment that offers space for participants to listen, create, and witness to others. It is the responsibility of each participant to seek out therapy should the readings or discussion bring up unresolved issues.

here are the details:


  • 5-weeks, starting January 5 to February 2, 2023
  • Thursday, 5:00 to 7:00 pm (Mountain Time)


  • In the comfort of your own home, via Zoom

What you need:

  • a copy of the current book;
  • a computer with good internet connection, webcam and microphone;
  • a writing or mixed media journal
  • some basic art materials (scissors, glue stick, colour and images)

Registration & Cost:  

  • There is no cost to join, but a pay-what-you-can option is available below and is always appreciated.
  • Please register by Monday, January 2nd.
  • A minimum number of participants (5) is required to go ahead. 

Sit in a room and read – and read and read. 

And read the right books by the right people. Your mind is brought onto that level, and you have a nice, mild, slow-burning rapture all the time.

~ Joseph Campbell, The Power of Myth

frequently asked questions

Q: Every book group I’ve participated in reads a book a month – why is this different?

A:  Stories Within isn’t just a reading/book group; it’s a story-based creative process that invites you to dive into the realm of story. We read, discuss and make art with the kind of books that contain so much juicy content that we may only cover several chapters each week. This slower pace allows us to immerse ourselves in the story, explore its connection to our lives, and create an expressive response based on what we uncover.

Q:  How do you choose the book we’re going to read?

A:  There’s really no rhyme or reason to how a book is chosen. Sometimes that ‘just right’ book comes at just the right time and sometimes it’s hit and miss. Intuition often guides my choice.

Q:  Aside from our weekly zoom gathering, how much time do I need to give this?

A:  That depends on the length of the book we are reading, the scheduled page range, and how quickly you read. 

Q:  What kind of art supplies will I need to purchase?

A:  Feel free to use what you have. If specific materials are needed, I’ll let you know in advance.

Q:  I don’t see myself as artistic or creative – exactly what kind of art will we be doing?

A:  Writing and visual art journaling will be our main creative tool, but other art modalities may be woven in at times – movement, photography, music, and more.  

Q:  Why don’t you offer this as a self-paced course?

A:  I’ve witnessed the great things that can happen when women gather – creativity, community, and connection unfolds in a most wondrous way. Telling our stories helps us to process what has happened in our lives, and through our shared experiences, we have opportunities to heal. Though some people love the flexibility of a self-paced class, my experience (and I’m not alone in this) is that many want and need the tangible energy and company of kindred hearts to keep them committed and engaged, and to fill their longing to be seen and heard.

Q:  The suggested cost is in Canadian dollars – what is that in my currency?

A:  Because I live in Canada, my workshop prices are in Canadian currency. PayPal lets you know what the cost will be in your currency before making the purchase. You can also check here to get an approximate idea of what the cost is in your currency.

Leaf divider
journal hero

join my creative circle!

Sign up below to receive news and updates, story pages from my journal, inspiration, and class announcements.

thank you!