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“Purple Halo”, honoring Miss Katie

Wow, how long have I been away from WordPress, entire format has changed…anyway, I’m here to pay tribute to a dear soul, Miss Katie.

In 2005, my two boys and I traveled to the Humane Society Shelter some twenty miles from our home in search of a new four-legged friend. We spotted Miss Katie amid the barking frenzy and sat with her for a time. Her huge brown eyes were sweet and calm, she was very thin, but sat on command and we bonded with her right away.

She proved herself to be a wonderful dog, dutifully guarding the house, barking at perceived intruders, and soon she was by my side constantly, in the studio when I was painting, in my office while I was working, by my bed at night, and eager for walks on the canal in the morning.

During the last seven years in particular, she supported me through the loss of my Mom (2007), my financial struggles as my business suffered, my son’s diagnosis of serious illness (he’s okay), my time as caregiver for my Dad (for four years until his death March 7, 2014).

There were serious health issues for her as well, Valley Fever and Tick fever in June 2008, abdominal mass in 2012, oral melanoma in 2013. Finally, last week, her organs started to fail, she was thirteen (we presume) and I had to let her go.

I created a small mandala in her honor, the center holds tear drops in infinity symbols over broken hearts, larger broken hearts are prominent, seeds with leaves are sprouting, more tear drops and then angels all the way around the piece.

This is the first piece I have painted since her passing, first painting in nine years completed without her in the studio nearby and I was painfully aware of her absence.

I miss her terribly, her smiling face, loving brown eyes, and careful guardianship of me.

Miss Katie, I hope doggie heaven is everything you want it to be, with all the food you want (including pizza crust), lots of space to run and freedom from pain and illness. Hope you receive highest honors for your service.

Filed under: Healing Art, Mandalas

About the Author

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As a Phoenix native, Vikki Reed's vibrant watercolors of desert botanicals evolved from her love and appreciation of the desert's ability to produce tender beauty in the midst of harsh conditions. The mandala series which began in 2004 resurrects a childhood knowledge that mandalas are a primordial tool for centering and healing. Vikki studied in the 1980s with watercolor greats Irving Shapiro and Paul Kuo, and began exhibiting at the outdoor shows in Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico after Paul's encouragement. This led to gallery representation with the Wickenburg Gallery and Work of Artist's Gallery. Vikki also exhibited at the Celebration of Fine Art for eight years. Before taking sabbatical to act as caregiver for her father in 2010, Vikki was featured in a one woman show at the Northern Trust Bank in January 2008 and was selected to create an ornament for the White House Christmas Tree that same year. Vikki's current focus, the Mandala Series, combines ancient symbolism and the healing power of color.


  1. solarbeez

    Purple Halo is a wonderful tribute to Miss Katie. I’m sure she will appreciate it and the thoughtful remembrances you’ve written.

  2. Pingback: “Bloomers” | Magical Mandalas

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