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Book Review: Confessions of a Bone Woman – Realizing Authentic Wildness in a Civilized World By Lucinda Bakken White

May, 2018

Book Review

Confessions of a Bone Woman – Realizing Authentic Wildness in a Civilized World By Lucinda Bakken White

This is a “coming of age” tale, the story of one woman’s rediscovery of freedom, joy and ultimately, herself. Lucinda Bakken White excavates her soul from underneath a lifetime of meeting expectations and fulfilling the demands of parents, peers, career, marriage and children and life as a “powerful socialite.” How does she do that? By excavating the bones and feathers of “roadkill” and creating art from them. She finds her life in the death and resurrection of the wilderness animals she roamed among as child.

Bakken White tells her tale of innocence lost and reborn using animal archetypes to describe herself at different points in her life. She moves from being a wolf, secure with her place in the pack, to a wolf among lions, changing her “skin” to meet the expectations of society and family. Her description of how she gave herself up, piece by piece and bone and bone, is worth reading. From the perspectives of both parent and child, it is an accurate description of how we are trained to conform, to be other than who we are and to take off the “skins” of our true natures to wear designer clothes. We become disconnected from the rhythms and cycles of the natural world and we fall out of balance with ourselves.

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Bakken White hears the call back to herself in dreams of Wolf and feels the pull to work with bones when she finds a buffalo skull that appears to her as a portal to other realms. She becomes “ravenous for bone” and finds that animals, dead and alive, communicate with her like her dreams do. Encounters with animals become an invitation to communicate with forces greater than herself and force her to stay aware and connected, pulling her back to herself and out of her superficial preoccupations. She finds herself working with carcasses of animals, preserving them, honoring the lives of the spirits that had once inhabited them and ultimately making sacred their presence here on Earth. Bakken White writes about digging into decaying carcasses with her fingers to get through what is dead to the bones, the structure of a life; she realizes that by digging through decay and going inside, with persistence and without horror, she can pull out and restore that which gives her life meaning.

Now as a woman coming of age and fully inhabiting her Elderhood, Bakken White works with other women to examine the masks they wear. She writes that in “looking back, I realized that bone by bone the animals I found were a metaphor for my personal process of discovering, unmasking and reconnecting the scattered parts of my true self.” But rather ending the book by identifying with the archetype of La Loba, the wolf woman who sings over the bones, Bakken White’s last chapter is called “Skunk.” Skunk is confident with herself and owns respect!!

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About the Author:

Susan Rossi is a Practitioner and Teacher of Shamanism. She is a long-time explorer of The Mysteries – the connections between mind, body, spirit and how to live in right relationship to all of the energies streaming through the cosmos. She works with clients as an astrologer, coach, ceremonialist and guide to the wisdom that each of us has the capacity to access. Her focus is on guiding clients to unblock and rediscover their inner wisdom. , exploration of the birth chart, ceremony, legacy writing, hypnotherapy, energetic healing practice and creation of sacred tools are integral pieces of her practice.

Susan trained in Soul Level Astrology with master astrologer Mark Borax. She delights in exploring with individuals the planetary pattern under which their soul choose to incarnate.

Flying to the Heart www.flyingtotheheart.com

The Crafty Writer

August, 2010

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Reborn Baby Dolls

I always thought the Reborn baby dolls brought out the maternal instinct in a woman, but the other day I listened to a couple of women talking and began to wonder. “Wash the baby with an alcohol swab until she is nice and clean then hold her with a steady hand as you trace the veins so they stand out nice and blue. Once you’re done, lay the baby carefully on a towel in a cake or pie pan, depending on size of infant and place them on the center rack in the oven. I like to bake my babies at 250 degrees for about 10 minutes.” Words like that didn’t bring the maternal issues that I envisioned to forefront of my imagination.

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Reborn dolls started out as a way to reclaim, rejuvenate and modernize existing silicone and vinyl based dolls. It is an amazing transformation of the old to the newer more realistic baby like standards of today. Chemical and mechanical formulations have been created that rejuvenate the vinyl along with instruction videos bring many new crafters into the fold. To hold and show a finished piece that was brought back from the world of obsolescence is an amazing accomplishment.

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There are new Vinyl blanks available from a number of artists on line and in certain hobby shops that are made just for this art form. They even cater to beginners by pre-painting the vinyl blanks and inserting the eyes so all that is needed is putting on the eyelashes and wigs. Then stuff the body and attaching the limbs presto, you have your new reborn baby to have and hold.

Now, just like all other hobbies there are varying levels of how far you take the craft. The pre-painted and eyes inserted is the easiest. Then there is the wig selection and eyelashes. These can be painted, pre-made wigs, or needle felted, where individual hair strands are placed using a felting needle. The wigs themselves are available in varying grades, from a simple cap to the clear cap that is nearly invisible.

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Taking a clean vinyl blank and painting the five to seven coats of heat set paints to bring the most lifelike color and texture into the baby or infant reborn doll is another step up the craft ladder. The painting style of the crafter also shows the quality and pains put forth in the presentation. This would include the extra fine veins, and eyebrows, or the clear gloss around the nose and tips of the lips. Then there is the paint inside the head, which gives tonal variances inside the nose, for when you drill nasal passages.

The care of Reborn Babies after they are completed is also very important. Great Britain and the United States have run many articles on police responding to and breaking into cars that have non-responsive children in vehicles. If you are going to take a Reborn with you do not lock her in the car without a large sign stating Reborn baby is not real. In other words always treat your Reborn baby as you would a real baby.

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Remember always safety first, when you bake your babies at 250 degrees use pot holders when you pull them out of the pan. As with anything else, good tools make good product, and practice improves everything. To see more of Kimberly’s Dolls, visit us at www.kskritters.com or Google Reborn dolls for more information.