It’s rather grey and dim again. There’s a little breeze, but it’s pretty quiet out there. It’s just below 50F and not forecast to get much warmer. We probably will get some rain, but nothing out of the ordinary. The rain gauge is coming up on 4 inches. I’d better dump it today.
Tempus just refilled the hummingbird feeder. We had ’em out there last night even in the dark! The big feeder is full, too, and it’s been covered with small birds all morning.
Yesterday went ok. I did more cookie experiments….trying rolling lebkuchen in nonpareils (worked) shortbread cookie dough with hazelnuts in the center (yummy, but didn’t work) scones with currents (timing was strange) and then mini-tarts with orange marmalade and hazelnuts.
I tried to write… seriously tried…. I managed about 3 usable paragraphs. I don’t know why. I can write these newsletters ok. How come I can’t write for my books? <sigh> Well, at least I got some time in and a little editing time on the stuff that I had written before. …and then this morning I wrote the little article below this note in answer to an e-mail question.
I’ll be at the shop today. Tempus is going into Newport to run a couple of errands and do some shopping. We’ll put the Readings sign out when he gets back. I’ll probably be working on the biscornu again and maybe some other sewing.
South window & north window.
…and I said the “rubber tree” is getting in on the act. I don’t know what this plant is, for sure. That’s what Grandma called hers, but I *know* that’s not the right name! Although I don’t know what is…. Can someone enlighten me?
…and yes, it has *just* one strand of garland. I’m thinking about getting out some tinsel for it….
Today is the Haloia of Demeter, the feast of the beginning of her long search for her daughter. More here:
…and a bit of cuteness… a Fairy Name Generator http://www.emmadavies.net/fairy/default.aspx
Love & Light,
This next bit was in answer to an e-mail asking the question, “Is Wicca evil?” I’m happy enough with it to want to share it with all of you.
No, of course Wicca is not evil. It’s a religion like any other. I suppose if you’re from a path that teaches that a woman must obey and not think for herself, then someone like me could be seen as evil. I think for myself, and I won’t obey blindly anyone or any order. I choose to be a strong woman, in control of my own life.
Wicca is a religion that is recognized by the US Military and those of us who are soldiers can have a Pentacle put on his/her headstone, just as Jews can have a Star of David, or Christians may have a Cross.
There are many Wiccan “Churches” in existence that have tax-exempt status as any church does. Most of us do not practice in a church, though. Covens and Circles are the names of the groups that form, although many (most?) Wicca practice as Solitaries.
Wicca is a Nature-based religion. We recognize our oneness with Nature and all that exists. We understand that each of us is a child of the universe and that in following the cycles of life we reinforce in ourselves this oneness. This is how we create magick, by becoming magick ourselves.
Wicca has no sacred book. We understand the the “People of the Book” believe that their Bible is the Word of God, but we do not. We understand that all books were written down by humans and any human can be wrong. Not only that, but words are slippery things and people tack the same words onto very different concepts. In having no “sacred book”, that makes all books sacred, anything that is written or spoken, and that reinforces our oneness with the Divine.
There are universal principles that are common to all religious paths, the understanding that the Divine exists, whatever word or concept you attach that meaning to, and that in creating harm, you are doing something very wrong, that you damage mostly yourself. Christians express this as, “Do for your neighbor that which you would have done for you.” Wiccans have our Rede (which means, “the right way to be”) which is stated, “An (if) it harm NONE, do as ye Will.” We also speak of the Law of Return, which we state as, “All returns thrice.” These are the principles that keep us to a moral, ethical path.
Wiccans see the Divine in many forms, understanding that we cannot comprehend it as a whole, and therefore we see something that we can understand. Commonly in group Sacred Space, these forms are spoken of as Goddess and God, as these reflect our own human form. We see the Divine as within each of us, and from each person’s viewpoint, the center of the Universe is our Self.
We also are very practical people. Since all is sacred, many of us work with small, concrete things, becoming Kitchen Witches, or Herbalists, or in making candles, incense and soaps in a sacred manner to help create our magick. Many of us are gardeners or farmers, which expresses our connection to all life. We work with crystals and herbs, always understanding that these are simply symbols for the larger purpose.
I don’t think that any of this is “evil”.
Wicca is not an easy path because of misconceptions and the awkwardness of not quite fitting in with the mainstream culture. We consider ourselves to be warriors, but our weapons are only turned on things that create harm, chaos and disorder.
We don’t proselytize, because we see that as “doing harm”, but will answer real questions, hoping to create good, or at least possibility.
I hope this answers your question.
Ok, Potterheads, this one’s for all of us. http://uberhumor.com/there-will-never-be-a-series-of-booksmovies-that-will-have-more-of-an-impact-on-my-life-than-harry-potter-long-but-awesome
Today’s Astro & Calendar
The Moon is a Waning Crescent. Waning Moon Magick – From the Full Moon to the New is a time for study, meditation, and magic designed to banish harmful energies and habits, for ridding oneself of addictions, illness or negativity. Tide change is on 12/13 at 12:42am. Waning Crescent Moon –Best time for beginning introspective magicks that are more long term. Phase ends on 12/8 at 12:42pm.
This is the time of year when the Andromeda Galaxy, M31, passes the zenith in early evening for skywatchers at mid-northern latitudes. It goes exactly through your zenith if you’re at 41° north latitude (New York, Denver). When this happens depends on your location.
Vesta is at is opposition tomorrow night, not far from Jupiter. It’s magnitude 6.4. Ceres, which comes to opposition in nine days, is magnitude 6.9. Spot them in binoculars using our finder chart in the December Sky & Telescope, page 50, http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/newtrack/st_201212/ or online. http://media.skyandtelescope.com/documents/WEB_Dec12_CeresVesta.pdf
Goddess Month of Astrea runs from 11/28 – 12/25
Celtic Tree Month of Ruis Elder Nov 25 – Dec 22
Runic half-month of Is November 28-12 Literally, ‘ice’: a static period. The time of waiting before birth. Nigel Pennick, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books, Rochester, Vermont, USA, 1992, 1992
©2012 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Ruis Elder Nov 25 – Dec 22 – Ruis – (RWEESH), elder – Celtic tree month of Ruis (Elder) commences (Nov 25 – Dec 22) – Like other Iron Age Europeans, the Celts were a polytheistic people prior to their conversion to (Celtic) Christianity. The Celts divided the year into 13 lunar cycles (months or moons). These were linked to specific sacred trees which gave each moon its name. Today commences the Celtic tree month of Elder.
Elder or Elderberry (Sambucus) is a genus of fast-growing shrubs or small trees in the family Caprifoliaceae. They bear bunches of small white or cream coloured flowers in the Spring, that are followed by bunches of small red, bluish or black berries. The berries are a very valuable food resource for many birds.
Common North American species include American Elder, Sambucus canadensis, in the east, and Blueberry Elder, Sambucus glauca, in the west; both have blue-black berries.
The common European species is the Common or Black Elder, Sambucus nigra, with black berries. This is a shrub growing to 10 m (33 feet) in damp clearings, along the edge of woods, and especially near habitations. Elders are grown for their blackish berries, which are used for preserves and wine. The leaf scars have the shape of a crescent moon. Elder branches have a broad spongy pith in their centers, much like the marrow of long bones, and an elder branch stripped of its bark is very bone-like. The red elder (S. racemosa L.) is a similar plant at higher elevations; it grows to 5 m (15 feet). Red elder extends its native range to northern North America, and it is cultivated along with other native species, but common elders are seldom seen in cultivation. Elders are in the Honeysuckle family (Caprifoliaceae).
Ruis – Elder Ogam letter correspondences
Month: Makeup days of the thirteenth Moon
Meaning: End of a cycle or problem.
to study this month Straif – Blackthorn Ogam letter correspondences
Letter: SS, Z, ST
Meaning: Resentment; Confusion; Refusing to see the truth
Tides for Alsea Bay
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
F 7 High 6:39 AM 7.5 7:39 AM Rise 12:52 AM 47
~ 7 Low 1:20 PM 2.2 4:37 PM Set 12:48 PM
~ 7 High 6:59 PM 5.7
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – I honestly face both the light and the shadow within me to harmonize all aspects of my spirit.
Journal Prompt – Personal Interests and Experiences – In the future, you might be able to take pills instead of eating meals. Explain why you would like or dislike taking these pills. For example, which foods would you like to take in pill form and which foods would you not like to take in pill form?
~ Your body is your temple: Care for it! Do not engage in useless activity. Listen to the Goddess. Help thyself. You create your own reality. – (Order of Scathach Warrior’s Admonition)
~ A bird does not sing because it has an answer. It sings because it has a song. – Chinese Proverb
~ A fly may sting a stately horse and make him wince; but one is but an insect, and the other is a horse still. – Dr. Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) English writer, lexicographer
~ A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control. – Proverbs 29:11, New International Version
Nothingness, through You, births these songs of pure passion,
Time’s darkness is adorned with their luminous tears.
Cupbearer! Never forget us! Fill the worlds with your breath!
Archangel of the Heart, make clay and water live!
Breathe into our ears the divine breath of Love!
We are tumbled haystacks, Lord, corn confused with straw;
Blow on us, separate us,
Send grief to grief, and joy to joy
So mind sinks back to mind, and the heart soars to heaven. – Jalal-ud-Din Rumi (Translated by Andrew Harvey from A Year of Rumi)
Magick – Yule – HOLIDAYS GIFT MAKING IDEA
Today, compose an aromatic gift bag filled with homemade mineral bath tablets! Fizzy, healing, and easy to use, anyone can appreciate the chance to renew their spirits and refresh their soul by adding these refreshingly fragrant effervescent bath tablets to a warm and relaxing bath. And whether they want a sensual, relaxing, or energizing escape, your loved ones will appreciate the selection of three fragrances to suit their moods!
What You Will Need for One Batch:
· 1/2 C. Baking Soda
· 1/2 C. Cornstarch
· 1/2 C. Citric Acid
· Crushed, Dried Flowers (chamomile, lavender, jasmine)
· Your Aromatic Blend (see recipes below)
· Small Cookie Cutters in Your Favorite Shapes
To Make Your Bath Tablets:
- Prepare your aromatic blends by combining the essential oils in small jars.
2.Place the cookie cutters on waxed paper. Do not grease them with petroleum jelly!
3.In a large glass bowl, mix together the baking soda, cornstarch, and citric acid.
4.Add the aromatherapy blend of your choice, and the crushed dried flowers.
6.Using a spray-mist bottle, gently mist the mixture blending as you go until they just hold together. Be careful not to overmist, as the mixture will fizz prematurely!
7.Press the damp mixture into the cookie cutters to form
8.Place your hand or a piece of cardboard over the mold and flip over to gently remove the solid form.
9.Let dry overnight.
- Gently toss two tablets into the bathwater and enjoy the bubbles and fizz and the delightful aroma! Soak for at least 15 minutes and embrace the moment. Deeply breathe the uplifting fragrance and allow your worries to wash away!
***Sensual Aromatherapy Blend:
· 6 drops Ylang Ylang Essential Oil
· 4 drops Jasmine Essential Oil
· 2 drops Cinnamon Essential Oil
***Stress-Reliever Aromatherapy Blend:
· 4 drops Lavender Essential Oil
· 4 drops Geranium Essential Oil
· 5 drops Marjoram Essential Oil
***Energy Boost Aromatherapy Blend
· 6 drops Rosemary Essential Oil
· 5 drops Grapefruit Essential Oil
· 5 drops Peppermint Essential Oil
Wrap your items in a beautiful sheer holiday-themed bag. Visit http://www.bagsandbowsonline.com/ for unique and wonderful ideas! )0(
Then Mrs. Claus told Santa her Mother was coming to visit, which stressed Santa even more.
When he went to harness the reindeer, he found that three of them were about to give birth and two others had jumped the fence and were out, Heaven knows where.
Then when he began to load the sleigh, one of the floorboards cracked, the toy bag fell to the ground and all the toys were scattered.
Frustrated, Santa went in the house for a cup of apple cider and a shot of rum. When he went to the cupboard, he discovered the elves had drunk all the cider and hidden the liquor.. In his frustration, he accidentally dropped the cider jug, and it broke into hundreds of little glass pieces all over the kitchen floor. He went to get the broom and found the mice had eaten all the straw off the end of the broom.
Just then the doorbell rang, and an irritated Santa marched to the door, yanked it open, and there stood a little angel with a great big Christmas tree.
The angel said very cheerfully, ‘Merry Christmas, Santa. Isn’t this a lovely day? I have a beautiful tree for you. Where would you like me to stick it?’
And so began the tradition of the little angel on top of the Christmas tree.
Not a lot of people know this!…….- Jonathan M Richards
Lighted House Count – Total on 12/1 was 49, added 0 last night.
Ok, this is a “silly” that we started when my kids were small…. just count how many houses have lights or lighted displays as you go about! Businesses don’t count, but doorways that are decorated and have a porch light on, do! …and certainly lighted trees in a window. <grin>