New Bike! (New House)

Sunday, May 26th, 2019

For months, Akiva has been telling me he needs a pedal bike. I don’t know what I was waiting for, not buying one for him. Finally, the day after his birthday, I looked on Kijiji. Akiva was pretty insistent that his bike have training wheels, so I found a cute little bike that seemed to come with training wheels. The following day, Martin picked up the bike after work. But when he brought the bike home, it turns out that the guy had given us the wrong training wheels! They wouldn’t fit the bike! Nonetheless, Akiva was so excited about the bike that he didn’t eat dinner. He couldn’t sleep. He got out of bed at 5am the next morning to work on the bike with Papa. Fortunately, it was a Saturday. They polished it and pumped up the tires and oiled the chain and gave it some good hugs. Before breakfast, they headed over to Claudia’s house to borrow the training wheels that had just come off Tabéa’s bike. But on the way to Claudia’s house, Akiva learned to ride the bike. Now he is a pro.


Today, Akiva rode the bike back and forth and back and forth and back and forth in front of the Yellow House. “I’m ready to get rid of the balance bike,” he said. We gave it to a neighbor. He’s had no regrets.







Wednesday, November 22nd, 2017

I am having trouble taking regular photos of my children.

Perhaps it is winter. Perhaps it is light. Perhaps is is here.


When all else fails, I can sit them together in the high chair in the kitchen.

Just to note the passage of time.

They are generally adorably amiable for a little while.


A Thorn in the Foot

Monday, October 12th, 2015

On Mondays, Iris goes to preschool at Maris’ Treehouse. The school is in All Souls’ Interfaith Church, located at the obscenely beautiful location of Meech Farm. After playing at Maris’, Iris is generally in such a good mood she does not want to go. So we wander around the grounds until Akiva gets grumpy. Unfortunately for photography purposes, the light is at its worst when preschool lets out: noon. Harsh.


I wanted Iris to run joyfully at the camera. It is very difficult to convince her to go far away enough from me to make a run at the camera. Then, unfortunately, she stepped on a thistle.




Wednesday, September 30th, 2015

Hello Pan!


One of my favorite things ever is unsolicited letters of hello. Thank you so much for writing me some thirty-three words. The circumstances of luck were enough for it to trigger a full-blown letter in return.


Way back in the olden days, when there was no such thing as internet and I traveled lots like a vagabond and there was no way to get a hold of me, I used to make sure I frequently mailed my friends and family lots of letters. I liked to imagine that they’d all write me back, providing I had an address. It was pretty unlikely my imaginings were correct. They were mostly all busy having babies and raising families, which, I’ve discovered, is the most time-consuming, all engrossing, I-don’t-have-time-for-anything-else-ing act one can undertake, should one choose to be so devoted. Which is what has, belatedly but eventually, happened to me.


I have recently moved my artistic musings over to the realm of doll making (Jessi Rose Dolls), which is a nice artistic outlet I can do with my children around. Meanwhile, my tarot journal sits stagnant like a bit of water caught behind a rock on the lee edge of a small pond far in the wilderness. Which is to day: it does not move. Two years ago I became a mere eight chapters short of finishing my tarot book. Now I see that it will probably wait until both my children are in school. Likely, no one will purchase it with a deck. Heck, no one will remember there was such a deck! But I am, first and foremost, a writer, so I’m sure I’ll finish it. I’ve always meant to. After all, it started out as an idea for a book. The deck was secondary.


As a mother, I am at peace. So many people say that the first child is the most drastic change, as this is the one that changes one’s life forever and so dramatically. I did not find it to be so. For me, it was much like buying a one-way ticket to an unknown place where I didn’t speak the language. Or it was like stashing all one’s possessions and hopping on a bicycle for an unlimited amount of time without a map or a plan. Or it was like jumping into the ocean alone to swim to a far-away shore and not telling anyone where I was headed. It was like leaving, and it was like going someplace new. Which is to say, it was, in so many ways, like nothing new at all. Without the least bit of preparation— as usual— I felt quite prepared.


But, like they all say, it has been, indeed, the most wonderful thing ever.






May you be at peace, and may you always know love—

We Hike Camel’s Hump

Sunday, September 7th, 2014

I handed the camera to Martin.



One of two survey markers that triangulate the highest point on the mountain.





Iris & Mama.





We sit on a rock.

The summit was densely populated.

Cars filled the parking lot and stretched in a line nearly a mile down the mountain road.

It was difficult to crop all the people out and still get any scenery.





I like this one.












“…mine fay-vit ones.”

Sunday, August 24th, 2014




Iris has learned the art of pointing out her favorite ones. She picks out favorite pictures in different books, favorite flowers to smell, and favorite clothespins. She has four favorite clothespins which she picks from the basket: three blue and one yellow, the yellow being the favoritest of all. They are 1950s vintage plastic clothespins that look something like this:





Some people collect them and display them in glass jars with fancy lids. I use them to hang laundry.




Arts and Crafts Festival Report

Thursday, July 31st, 2014

Dan wrote up a pretty concise report on the Syracuse Arts & Crafts Festival, which you can see if you check out his website. It was a lot of fun, tho I wish I’d had time to actually check out the festival. I hear there was some good art there. Tons. So much that nobody noticed ours. They did, however, notice the little sign that said “Tarot Readings Here.” I’m still hung over from doing so many tarot readings. Dan drew a picture about the scene. It’s better than accurate.





In reality, we were in the same tent.

AmeriCU Syracuse Arts & Crafts Festival

Saturday, July 19th, 2014

Dan decided he was going to have a booth at the AmeriCU Syracuse Arts & Crafts Festival, and one of his friends suggested he bring me along. I’m good company and good looking and I have a unique product, so, I mean, really, the suggestion was a no-brainer.


Dan has a lot of new paintings and a load of prints for sale. I have my excellent tarot deck and will be doing 5-minute (or 10-minute) readings. I’m offering a free reading with every deck purchased. In addition, I’ll be selling magnets of the cards for three bucks each or four-for-ten. Dan has some good deals, but you’ll have to stop by the tent to find those out. And to see his art. I mean, really, it’s awesome. So is mine. Come see us!!!



Re: Bags and Boxes for the Absurd

Saturday, June 7th, 2014

Crewel Twists

Dear Judy—


The most amazing thing about books is how many ideas they contain and how they open the mind for dreaming. I think it must be important to have a backlog of dreams. I blame this on my mom, who had (and still has) books on how to make and do just about anything. I used to think that this was in case we kids wanted to do it, but the truth is, the books are the result of an endless curiosity about and admiration of how things are done. I fall into the same trap and have some wonderful books by delightful artists about paper maché, book-binding, botanical illustration, macrame, pencil drawing, sewing useful things, and sewing beautiful things, leatherwork, jewelry making, and so on.


I used to do a bit of embroidery in my early 20s, possibly because embroidery canvas is everywhere you look and the supplies take up very little space and stitches are fun to master. However, because I didn’t live anywhere in particular, I never read books on embroidery. Instead, I carried around a pamphlet filled with descriptions of different embroidery stitches and their various uses. I would make a simple design and embroider it. Then I would invariably give it away. I remember seeing a magazine article about a woman and her embroidered curtains and just thinking of doing one tiny part of the work she had done overwhelmed me so much I could not read the article in fear that it, too, would be endlessly laborious.


My mother brings home piles of pillowcases with tatted edges and key-hole lace, cross-stitched finger napkins, crocheted antimacassars— exquisite thread-work. “Just look at this!” she says for each one and names a price— fifty cents, a dollar a pile, a dime and then— “How could I pass that up?” The lives of hundreds of women are stitched in hope chests reclaimed by my mother, hope eternal. And now I have a very slight fear of looking too closely at handiwork in case I fall into it like some nightmare and am forced to dream each stitch, one at a time. But just today I saw a woman with a lovely embroidered yoke on her shirt. Of course I wanted to run my fingers across the stitches and flip it over to see the back. Instead I merely forgot the woman’s name. But not the stitches.


In sum: I’m certain the Absurd would be honored to be housed in a bag of Jacobean embroidery. Who would not?


On another note, tho, I bought back the deck that the complainer returned to Amazon. I loose a bit of money on a return sale, but that’s the way it is. I’d been wondering at her card and chanced a guess at it. It was the 9 of Blades. I was correct. Most of the decks end up with Major Arcana, I think, due to one printing mistake or another. I’ve always wondered whether I should include unfavorable or dull cards or cards I dislike when putting in a numbered deck-marking card. But then I think, you know, I can’t control these things. Open-minded people can take a negative card and search as hard as they can to find positivity in it. People who are closed to new ideas generally see flat-out negativity. I had a hard time with the Nine of Blades until I decided to call it “the card of the prodigal dreamer.” I don’t think that’s right, but I like the way it sounds. We have much to learn from our nightmares. When they are plentiful, they have much to teach us. If we study them long enough, they enable us to better reach our dreams. Eyes closed, the dreamer catches the falling sword by the blade. Does he awake unharmed?


Peace & Love,

Jessica Rose



9 of blades

Show your love! Purchase a deck by February 14!

Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

Due to a recent upsurge in sales of the Tarot of the Absurd, I have decided to celebrate by increasing the price of the deck by $2.00 on February 14th.


Two bucks! That’s right! Not even the price of a Starbucks coffee. Nonetheless, you may ask yourself, why so much?  The answer is simple: I need a raise. I make approximately $2.90 per hour on this deck, which was the federal minimum wage in 1979.  I live in Vermont where the minimum wage is currently $8.73. How much more money will I make with a price increase of two bucks? Unfortunately, very, very little.


Lucky for you all, new price is still a totally awesome deal for a signed & numbered limited edition hand-finished 100% made in USA tarot deck. Buy one now!


sales photo