Twin Rocks Cafe for Southwest Foodies

Twin Rocks Cafe in Bluff, UT has delicious treats fro foodies

A Foodie’s Delight — the Navajo Taco

Twin Rocks Cafe is a little piece of heaven for the weary traveler, an oasis in the desert!  We have been there on blustery days with snow on the ground and hot days in summer, and it’s always a welcome sight.

“The food is always delicious, (the best breakfast burrito in the country).The gift shop offers great jewelry, souvenirs & a lot of good stuff.  The gallery next door is extraordinary.  Always a pleasant experience!” Can’t wait to be back!” ALJ, –Annie Jones • June 14, 2010

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Thank you, Annie, for the great note, and forgive us for taking so long to get back to you! We’d like to tell you (sound of trumpets) that we are still an off-the-beaten-path foodie haven in the great southwest.

If you, oh, southwest traveler, are looking for frybread, navajo tacos, or you simply want to sit on the porch and sip a cool beer or raspberry iced tea, we’ve got you covered. (Come back and visit, Annie!)

Our menu is larger than ever and, we’d like to think, the food just keeps getting better.  Our wait staff, couldn’t be better. We are honored to have some of the most wonderful people working at Twin Rocks Café, people who treat you the way all guests should be treated – with grace and care.

After you stop by and enjoy a Navajo Taco, come on down to the gallery.  Our selection of books will make your trip through the southwest more exciting and adventurous.  As for our folk art and fine art?  We are betting that you will find at least one piece irresistible, as did David.  Here’s his note to us:   “We visited Twin Rocks the end of Jun 2012…a great place. We purchased several things: a basket, and some earrings and a necklace. My wife found a set of earrings made to look like yellow corn. She also purchased a necklace and earrings made like corn in turquoise.

We would like to purchase a necklace in the yellow. Can you advise when you may have this item? We tell everyone that they must visit Bluff if they are out west. Great people and wonderful town. Our memories will last forever.” –David A. Raborn • November 30, 2012.

Thank you, David, and your beautiful wife.

For you who haven’t visited us?  Stop by on your way to one of the mystical and ancient places in the Southwest.  Wherever you’re heading, we’re at the crossroads.

Soon! – The Twin Rocks Crew

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The Navajo Code Talkers Saved Our Behinds!

Navajo Code Talkers

This Memorial Weekend, Twin Rocks would like to thank the Navajo Code Talkers. (And, we thank navajocodetalkers.org for their amazing information, below.)

The code that was created at Camp Pendleton was as ingenious as it was effective. It originated as approximately 200 terms—growing to over 600 by war’s end—and could communicate in 20 seconds what took coding machines of the time 30 minutes to do.  It consisted of native terms that were associated with the respective military terms they resembled.

For example, the Navajo word for turtle meant “tank,” and a dive-bomber was a “chicken hawk.” To supplement those terms, words could be spelled out using Navajo terms assigned to individual letters of the alphabet—the selection of the Navajo term being based on the first letter of the Navajo word’s English meaning. For instance, “Wo-La-Chee” means “ant,” and would represent the letter “A”. In this way the Navajo Code Talkers could quickly and concisely communicate with each other in a manner even uninitiated Navajos could not understand.

Once trained, the Navajo Code Talkers were sent to Marine divisions in the Pacific theater of WWII. Despite some initial skepticism by commanding officers, they quickly gained a distinguished reputation for their remarkable abilities.

In the field, they were not allowed to write any part of the code down as a reference. They became living codes, and even under harried battle conditions, the men had to rapidly recall every word with utmost precision or risk hundreds or thousands of lives. In the battle for Iwo Jima, in the first 48 hours alone, they coded over 800 transmissions with perfect accuracy. Their heroism is widely acknowledged as the lynchpin of victory in the pivotal conflict.

Native Americans have fought valiantly to protect us during many battles.  We thank them from the bottom of our hearts.

How to Become a Navajo Medicine Man

Young Dine (Navajo) Medicine Man tells us about his practice.

Young Dine (Navajo) Medicine Man tells us about his practice.

About Being and Becoming a Navajo Medicine Man

We would like to share the link above with you, sort of a follow-up to our last post.  It is an extraordinary film of a young medicine describing what he does,  how he learned it.

We invite you to take a break, fall into the mysteries, and enjoy this amazing video!

Your friends,

The Team at Twin Rocks

The Mysteries of Navajo Medicine

Navajo Medicine Men making a Healing Sandpainting

Navajo Medicine Men making a Healing Sandpainting

To most American Indians, medicine had/has a different meaning than we give it.  It comes with an entire array of ideas and healing concepts, as well as remedies and treatments.

An explorer, George Grinnell, wrote something that we’d like to share with you:

“All these things that we speak of as medicine, Indian people call mysterious.  And, the word mysterious is used to mean that their healing properties is beyond anyone’s power to account for.”

Isn’t this what the power of prayer or positive thinking amounts to?  Positive thoughts that we send up to the skies, or hopes and dreams that may or may not come true. And if they do come true?  It comes from the center of the great mystery–probably whichever form of religion we ascribe to.

He continues:  “We say that Indian people call whisky ‘medicine water.’ Translated, it is really called mysterious water, meaning water that acts in a way that’s not understandable.  And, in the same way, some tribes call the horse ‘medicine dog,’ and the gun ‘medicine iron‘.  Both are a mystery.

“People who we call a medicine man may be a doctor, a healer of diseases.  If he does something like juggle, he may be a worker of magic.  Either way, he is a mystery man.

“All Indian languages that we know of have words which are the equivalent of our word ‘medicine’, sometimes with curative properties.  But, the Indian’s actual translation of ‘medicine,’ used in the sense of magical or supernatural, would be ‘mysterious, inexplicable, and unaccountable.'”

Medicine is a mystery, almost any Western doctor will agree. Sure, there are formulas to make the medicine and give it. But, in the end, the same medicine works differently on everyone.  And that is a mystery.  We all understand that, and the best doctors will agree that, in the end, there is a magic inside the patient, whether we call it will, fate or chemistry, that will cause healing.

As an afternote, and a description of how much the term ‘medicine’ covers, John James Audubon, the great American painter and naturalist, said, “I think it’s notable that the Missouri valley Indians called the steamboat “great medicine.”  Truly, moving across a mighty river, with or against the current, certainly is mysterious.

So, let your mind roam the world of mysteries and wonders.  See how much comes down to the word “medicine.”  It’s just about everything imaginable!

Miss Navajo is Much More than a Sexy Bathingsuit

Miss Navajo Nation will carry on the tradition of Beauty and Pride in Womanhood

New Miss Navajo Nation, 2012 – 2013

We at Twin Rocks are proud of the young women who are our treasured neighbors, artists and storytellers.  We’ve published photos of Miss Navajo over the years, and we’d like to share with you a different cultural perspective on Beauty.

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Welcome (ya’at’eeh)  This, from:  www.missnavajonaton.com:

In keeping with Navajo culture and tradition, the role of Miss Navajo Nation is to exemplify the essence and characters of First Woman, White Shell Woman and Changing Woman and to display leadership as the Goodwill Ambassador.

Miss Navajo Nation represents womanhood, and she fulfills the role of ‘grandmother, mother, aunt, and sister’ to the Navajo people. And so, she can speak as a leader, teacher, counselor, advisor and friend.’

In March 1999, the Branch Chiefs of the Navajo government agreed that the tone of the fundamental principles of the Navajo government should be the preservation of the Navajo culture. It shall be the mission of the Office of Miss Navajo Nation to encourage every Navajo to assist in the preservation of Navajo culture, and Miss Navajo Nation will represent the importance of Navajo women with respect and honor.    From the Current Miss Navajo, Leandra Thomas:

“My name is Leandra Thomas. I am Naakaii Dine (Mexican/Spanish people) born for Tsi’naajinii (Black streak people). My maternal grandparents are Kiiya’aanii (Towering house people), and my paternal grandparents are Honagha’nii (Ones who walk around). I come from a small community called Steamboat Canyon, Arizona. I received my bachelor’s degree from Northern Arizona University in elementary education. I am pursing my master’s degree in bilingual multicultural education, also from NAU.

“I have two loving parents, Anderson and Bernice Thomas. I’m the youngest of four, with three older brothers Andy, Arlo, and Leander. The teachings that are instilled within me come from my family, grandparents, relatives, and our livestock. (Yes, she said livestock — we can certainly learn from other animals.)

“As an educator and a student, I feel the students are the ones who will be carrying on our Dine teachings. Our elders are the ones who share the stories, and from them we learn about our Navajo culture and language. Therefore, throughout the year, my focus is on our youth and our elders. Together, our Navajo Nation is able to reach great heights, and together we are able to walk in beauty.”

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Together… That’s how we all walk in Beauty.  Thank you, Leandra, an extraordinary young woman.  You make us all proud.

Even Mother of All Needs a Break

Creating the World Takes a Lot of Energy

Creating the World Takes a Lot of Energy

Hosteen Klah, wonderful Navajo storyteller and keeper of the Old Stories, referred to the Creation Myth and Changing Woman:

“Great Water of the sunset… When all the Indian tribes had been established on this present earth, the Sun said to Changing Woman, `Your work here is finished.  You may now go to the place of the sunset, where, far out over the great waters, I have built a house for you. I will send powerful guards with you — the Hail, the Thunder, the Lightning, and the Water Ruler.

“‘The Wind, the Rain, the Clouds, and the Light have helped me make a beautiful house for you, and I wish you to live where I can meet you in the evening.’

“This house was built on a beautiful island called `Land that Floats on the Water.’ In it were four rooms and on each was on floor.  And, for each floor there were ladders of black jet, white shell, turquoise, and abalone on all four sides. On top of the house there was a multicolored thunderbird, larger than any that has ever been seen, who was the chief of all thunderbirds.

“On his back he carried small thunderbirds of all the ceremonial colors. In the center of this palace was a large room with an altar decorated with all the colors of every flower that had bloomed and faded on earth, and with the spirits of all the birds. The main entrance was toward the east and was guarded by a white-shell rattle which gave the alarm whenever a visitor approached.

“To this place Changing Woman came to live forever and meet the Sun in the evenings.” — Hosteen Klah, Navajo Medicine Man and Sand Painter.

A nice rendezvous home for a woman who had done her work well and deserved a nice second place to live!

Southwest Jewelry for Women and Men

 

Unique silver jewelry for women and men.  Southwestern silver and turquoise, each piece of wearable art is a masterpiece.

Silver Navajo jewelry with carved rock art and turquoise.

At Twin Rocks Trading Post, Southwest Jewelry begins with ancient Puebloan stone-cutting techniques found in today’s Santo Domingo jewelry.  There is also stone inlay integral to contemporary expressions in Zuni jewelry. We also love silver jewelry techniques mastered by Navajo and Hopi artisans.

WATCH THIS PIECE OF JEWELRY BEING MADE! The designs are rock art and creation stories.

Southwest Jewelry is usually silver and turquoise. Our stones are high quality, dramatic, and diverse.  Some of our turquoise, such as Carico, is green! Other stones are rich with gold veins.  Top grade stones are, among others, from the nearby Bisbee, Demale, Carico Lake, Kingman, Blue Gem and #8 mines.

After the stones are polished and shaped, they’re translated into outstanding southwestern jewelry for women and men. What is your passion? Southwestern jewelry covers the gamut from necklaces, bracelets, buckles, earrings and rings.  Beyond turquoise, we seek the finest in contemporary jewelry using coral, sugilite, lapis, malachite, charoite, and a diversity of agates.

Stop by Twin Rocks Trading Post here in Bluff, UT, halfway between Mesa Verde and the Grand Canyon. Each piece of jewelry is unique.  Every stone has a story that touches your heart and imagination.

beautiful woman, beautiful bracelet