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 unfolding…and it is still moving.  

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 and watch.

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 INTO story as a way to connect with your own unique story and intuitive knowing.


Stories Within isn’t just a reading and 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 through a new book every season – discovering, listening, and giving voice to your own deep wisdom – and  gathering all 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
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Here’s what past participants have to say:

What will you do?

  • Create a handmade book using the art, images, and words gathered throughout this process;
  • Read each chapter to mine the gold within, diving into the depths of the story to retrieve signs, symbols, and connections;
  • Express yourself both creatively and playfully using a variety of art modalities;
  • 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;
  • Experience this story-walking, soul-tending workshop with a circle of women.


Stories Within is

Story Medicine for your Soul.

Winter 2022 Book Selection:

Wintering book

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.

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here are the details:


  • 5-weeks, starting February 3 to March 3, 2022
  • Thursday, 10:00 am to 12:30 pm (Mountain Time)


  • In the comfort of your own home, via Zoom

What you need:

  • a copy of the current book selection (audio or paper);
  • a computer with good internet connection, webcam and microphone;
  • basic art materials (detailed list provided);
  • a reading schedule (sent prior to start date).

What’s included:

  • 5-weeks of guided facilitation, group discussion and art making;
  • A reading guide to capture notes, quotes, and meaningful passages;
  • Projects and prompts to correspond with the readings;
  • Guided instructions to create your own handmade book.

Registration & Cost:  

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: Often book groups read an entire book in 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 the content we uncover.

Q:  Aside from the weekly online 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 reading, and how quickly you read. I suggest giving yourself an uninterrupted block of time to read and then respond to the prompts in the workbook; these are helpful during discussions and will assist your art response. 

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

A:  Sometimes specific supplies are needed, but I’ve intentionally kept the list limited to those on my favourite art supplies list. Feel free to substitute or use what you have!

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

A:  Visual art journaling will be our main creative tool, but a variety of other art modalities will be incorporated as well – writing, movement, photography, music, and more. You’ll be guided through specific exercises – no previous art background or skills are required. There are no rules or analysis in this process, just opportunities for creative play! 

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:  I notice the 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.

NOTE: If money is tight or you’ve been impacted financially by the pandemic, please email me to discuss a PWYC option. 

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journal hero

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