It’s beautifully sunny, very clear and with almost no wind. It’s only 52, but they’re talking about temps in the mid-50’s by later in the day. It feels as though it ought to be later in the day. I fell into bed last night around 10pm and slept until past 9am this morning.
I’ve been watching mostly sparrows and towhees this morning. During the winter 2 or 3 inches of seed would go away in a day. Since Tempus re-filled it last week only 2 inches has gone. There’s lots more for them out there, obviously! One of the towhees was looking in the window just now, standing on the handlebars of the exercise bike until Tempus came and burped at me instead of saying hello. There was a feather floofle and the bird flew off, but since I couldn’t see anything but the bird’s head, it looked like he exploded. 🙂
The alder is fully in leaf, the pine is saying “f*** off”, the hemlock has distinctly greener bits on the tips of its branches and the blue spruce still hasn’t gotten its blue back from the winter. Something has knocked over my weather station, so I can’t see the thermometer. Don’t know what I mean about the pine tree? The new growth tips are long enough to look like fingers and they’re making a rude gesture. 🙂 Those pine tips are the things we use in incense. We’ve got to get some harvested. Since I use the pollen, too, they’re hard to handle. I have a cloth that I line my basket with that is permanently stain from the pollen and it sits on the shelf for most of the year, except during this time.
On the drive down to the shop yesterday, the ocean was *so* blue and wide and calm! Tempus’ computer at the shop still had Hearts of Space playing, so I didn’t turn on the stereo. I did a little on inventory in the morning, since the honey sticks were tipping over and the peppermint patties low in the jar. I had a lady wander in ask about readings and wander out. Hmm….
Tempus was running around on errands for quite a while, while I started working out some orders (we’re all caught up on bills!) and then I did a little on OCPPG. The “teacher letters” are due on May 1, and I only have 4, so a little poking and prodding is in order. Gotta get my *own* done, for that matter….
Interesting article over on Patheos on metaphor/gender identity. http://www.patheos.com/blogs/sermonsfromthemound/2013/04/metaphors-can-kill/
I got a nap mid-afternoon and then ended up cussing out the blackwork cards and the printer. 1/2 of them printed out in one size and 1/2 in the other, although they were put together on the same template. …and two of the same card came out in two different sizes… go figure… I finally gave up and worked on what I’m taking this coming weekend, finding at least one box of game stuff that I wasn’t sure we still had.
We didn’t get out of the shop until past 8pm. The sky had a beautiful pink glow right over where the sun had set and the primrose glow to either side was just lovely. The Moon was glowing brightly enough that there was already a shadow cast on the front door, even though it was only 1/2-way into twilight. I did a bit of hunting of astronomy stuff for the newsletter during the evening. You’ll see more in the coming days than we’ve had for awhile.
We had salad for supper with grilled cheese and then made a shopping list for today, which we’re finishing this morning. Tempus is making waffles and scrambled eggs, and I have my coffee.
I’m going to be sewing down at the shop at some point today. Tempus is heading into Newport to do the shopping. I’ll have the door unlocked and the lights on in back, so just come in and holler if you need something. 🙂 Other than that, the usual newsletter stuff and house chores need to happen.
Today is the English feast of St. George, the Dragonslayer. He is related to Sigurd the Dragonslayer whose feast is June 9 in modern Asatru. Morris Dance is a feature of this festival. Both George and Sigurd are archetypal Heroes whose stories are the Divine Masculine end of Initiation & Quest tales. Morris Dances are a feature of this day in England, and flags with the St. George Cross. Roses have been part of this festival since the Middle Ages and books since 1923, which commemorate the deaths of Shakespeare and Cervantes near this date. More on the festival here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_George%27s_Day , on St. George here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_George , and on the tale here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_George_and_the_Dragon
Today’s Plant is Maidenhair Fern. It is cultivated for use in gardens, but out here on the coast you can’t walk past a stand of trees without seeing it. Our variety is Adiantum Pedatum, (northern maidenhair, five-fingered fern) most often , but others of the aidantums get mixed in, too. – Feminine, Venus, Water – This represents the physical presence of the Divine Feminine, much as the Sword Fern represents the Divine Masculine. To get more in touch with this part of your Higher Self and to gain grace and physical beauty (always remembering that true beauty is from within) soak a sprig of this plant in water (…better by moonlight, and it’s a great ritual for a Full Moon) and hang it in your bedroom. This is also helpful for the transition times between life stages, and can even help with becoming pregnant if there are physical difficulties with a woman’s cycles. More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adiantum_pedatum and on the family grouping here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maidenhair_fern
The shop is closed on Tuesday/Wednesday since we need a weekend, too, although I’ll be sewing in the back while Tempus is running errands. Spring hours are 11am-7pm Thursday through Monday. If we’re supposed to be closed, but it looks like we’re there, try the door. If it’s open, the shop’s open! In case of bad weather, check here at the blog for updates, on our Facebook as Ancient Light or call the shop at 541-563-7154.
Love & Light,
Today’s Astro & Calendar
The Moon is Waxing Gibbous. Waxing Moon Magick – The waxing moon is for constructive magick, such as love, wealth, success, courage, friendship, luck or healthy, protection, divination. Any working that needs extra power, such as help finding a new job or healings for serious conditions, can be done now. Also, love, knowledge, legal undertakings, money and dreams. Phase ends at the Tide Change on 4/25 at 12:57pm. Waxing Gibbous Moon – From seven to fourteen days after the new moon. For spells that need concentrated work over a ¼ moon cycle this is the best time for constructive workings. Aim to do the last working on the day of the Full moon, before the turn. Keywords for the Gibbous phase are: analyze, prepare, trust. It is the time in a cycle to process the results of the actions taken during the First Quarter. During this phase you are gathering information. Give up making judgments; it will only lead to worry. Your knowledge is incomplete. Laugh. Analyze and filter. LOOK WITHIN. God/dess aspect: Maiden/Youth, but in the uncommitted phase, the Warriors Associated God/desses: Dion, Dionysius, Venus, Thor. Phase ends on 4/24 at 12:57am.
The two brightest points in the sky after dusk this week are Jupiter in the west and Sirius in the southwest. Midway between them is Orion. This lineup is lying down lower every week now. How late into the spring can you keep it in view?
Mars is on the far side of the sun, being in conjunction with it on April 18.Watch the Moon pair up with Spica and Saturn.
There’s a bright gibbous Moon tonight. If you’re out with a telescope, you’ll notice that the Moon is creeping toward a star: Chi Virginis, magnitude 4.7. The Moon’s invisible dark limb, just beyond the terminator, will occult the star for most of North America except the Northeast and north of the Great Lakes. Some times of the star’s disappearance: at Washington, DC, 12:20 a.m. EDT; Miami, 11:58 p.m. EDT; Chicago, 10:47 p.m. CDT; Austin, 10:17 p.m. CDT; Denver, 9:07 p.m. MDT; Los Angeles, 7:52 p.m. PDT.
Goddess Month of Maia runs from 4/18 – 5/15
Celtic Tree Month of Saille/Willow Apr 15 – May 12
Runic half-month of Mannaz/ Man, April 14-28 – A time when the archetypal reality of the human condition should be meditated upon. Nigel Pennick, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books, Rochester, Vermont, USA, 1992, 1992
©2013 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Celtic Tree Month of Saille/Willow Apr 15 – May 12 – The Willow in the Tree alphabet stands for the female and lunar rhythms of life. She is water-seeking, thriving from preference on the damp margins of lakes and streams or across the low-lying water meadows. Water and the tidal movements of the sea are governed by the pull of the moon. The moon in its monthly rhythms is female, contrasting with the male sun’s daily and yearly turnings. In several ways, the Celts held women in higher regard than we do today. On the material level, women were property owners, and whoever controlled the property controlled the marriage. Women of all types and ages appeared in the Celtic pantheon, the spiritual strength and life-giving qualities given by both female and male recognized equally. There were colleges of Druidesses – learned women and teachers – respected equally for their gifts of see-ship, often expressed through dreams, or night visions.
Magical Associations: Romantic love, healing, protection, fertility, magic for women.
Saille – Willow Ogam letter correspondences
Color: listed only as bright
Meaning: Gaining balance in your life
Tides for Alsea Bay
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Tu 23 Low 5:38 AM 0.6 6:18 AM Set 4:55 AM 88
~ 23 High 11:40 AM 6.7 8:11 PM Rise 6:09 PM
~ 23 Low 5:38 PM 1.2
~ 23 High 11:43 PM 7.9
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Dance for your life!
~ Knowledge has to be improved, challenged, and increased constantly, or it vanishes. – Peter Drucker
~ Men may die, but the fabrics of free institutions remains unshaken. – Chester Allen Arthur (1830-1886) US President (21st), VP (20th)
~ Most witches don’t believe in gods. They know that the gods exist, of course. They even deal with them occasionally. But they don’t believe in them. They know them too well. It would be like believing in the postman. – Terry Pratchett, Witches Abroad
~ Novelists do not write as birds sing, by the push of nature. It is part of the job that there should be much routine and some daily stuff on the level of carpentry. – William Golding (1911-1993) English writer
As to Jesus of Nazareth, my Opinion of whom you particularly desire, I think the System of Morals and his Religion … has received various corrupting Changes, and I have, with most of the present dissenters in England, some doubts as to his Divinity; tho’ it is a question I do not dogmatize upon, having never studied it, and think it needless to busy myself with it now, when I expect soon an opportunity of knowing the Truth with less trouble. – Benjamin Franklin, A Biography in his Own Words, edited by Thomas Fleming, p. 404, (1972, Newsweek, New York, NY) quoting letter by Franklin to Exra Stiles, March 9, 1790
Magick – Beltane Crafts
Pressing Flowers – http://www.chroniclesofavalon.com/beltane2003print.html
Selecting The Flowers – Garden flowers, leaves and ferns can be collected and pressed for use in making pictures or cards. A botanical collection can also be made with wild flowers (never rare flowers). Only take one or two common flowers from a spot where they are plentiful.
Flowers should be picked after mid-day when they are dry. They should be pressed as soon as possible after picking to avoid wilting. You will find through trial and error which flowers dry best and which colors are lasting. Do not try to press a very thick flower it would be best to disassemble and press just the petals. Remember fresh flowers, press quickly and carefully, dry well, and use small flowers (or thin pieces of thicker flowers).
Pressing The Flowers – Flowers can be pressed between sheets of blotting paper and placed in a telephone book with weights. A flower press can be used, consisting of layers of newsprint interleaved with corrugated cardboard. A press uses plywood board top and bottom, and pressure is applied by tightening the wing nuts on the four corner screws.
Flowers are then carefully laid in the press, with plenty of newspaper between layers, and cardboard after every few layers. Leave them undisturbed for two or three weeks for best results.
Using the Flowers (this section added by Anja ©2013 M. Bartlett and does not void previous copyright) – Pretty bookmarks and placemats can be made by laying pressed plants out on clear contact paper and then putting another sheet on top. Easier still is to laminate them with or without the paper. You may add cutouts or glitter or even flat sequins.
Flowers can be glued to a paper backing and framed in standard picture frames.
I have used pressed flowers and other plants in decoupage. Using a glue that will not discolor when Mod-Podge™ – ed or varnished or shellacked over, and using only the tiniest dots of glue, create your preferred arrangement and then let dry. Top coat by your preferred method.
People have set pressed flowers between sheets of glass for decoration for a long time. If you know how, metal foil may be set around the edges to make an airtight seal, or you can use glue and then add a fabric strip or even some kind of ribbon trim.
There are many kinds of color-your-own paperweights, coasters, mugs, keychain fobs and vases where pressed flowers can be glued to paper and inserted, or even fastened directly to the inside of the plastic.
Many pressed flowers can be laid on the tops of cookies or candies (obviously only the edible ones) or even on iced cakes. If you’re making an herbal balm or floral perfume, a pressed petal or dried rosebud can be set on top to identify the contents.
You can use pressed flowers to go effect in potpourri mixes or in spells where the visual effect is part of the magick.
13.Fairie Queen – Is he a she? Is she a he? Are they a couple, or are those two a couple or are all four of them a quadruple? If getting answers to these questions could disturb you, best stay away. If, on the other hand, these kind of questions seem overly judgmental, you might have a real good time …
Distinguishing Signs: When you look at this person, does every sex act you’ve ever experienced in your life seem hopelessly vanilla? If so, congratulations — you’ve found a Fairie!
14.High Episcopagan – Do their rituals have a script, a choreographer, a stage manager, an orchestra with chorus and last at least three hours? It’s a High Episcopagan! They can memorize pages and pages of Olde Englishe, have more ritual garbs than most people have socks, and consider their main pagan influences to be Gerald Gardner, Judy Garland and Busby Berkeley.
Distinguishing Signs: Book of Shadows exceeds five volumes. Knows every note of “Carmina Burana” Don’t ask them about that 18th century seed pearl trim on their ritual hat unless you’ve got an hour to spare.
15.Fundamentapagan – If it’s in a book, it must be true. If it’s in an old book, it must really be true. If it’s in an old book that was handed down from an oral tradition of people who couldn’t read, then it must really be way true. Gnashes their teeth if anyone shows up at a circle wearing a watch, glasses, or other mechanical assistance. Believes that anyone who lives in a city, eats meat or has a regular job dare not call themselves a pagan.
Distinguishing Signs: Has hissy fits when somebody brings up the old “Crowley ghosted Gardner’s books” argument. Goes around correcting everyone’s gaelic/old norse/latin/babylonian.
16.Dances With Bunnyrabbits – Uses animal symbolism to express nearly all opinions and feelings. Charter member of PETA. Thinks meat eaters should be publicly executed. Has many, many, many pets. Has a spirit animal. Personally owns 927 models, pictures, and other depictions of their spirit animal.
Distinguishing Signs: Not counting the pagan his/herself, how many animals can you see when looking at them? If the count surpasses five (including critters found on tattoos, jewelry, garments and undies), you’ve found a worshipper of beasties.
17.Priest/ess of Political Correctness – Analyzes everything they read or hear for sexist-racist-homophobic- imperialist-Eurocentric content without paying attention to what is actually being said. Believes in personal liberty — everyone has the right to be overbearing, dogmatic and holier-than-thou, not just the Xtian Right. Incredibly boring yet annoyingly self-righteous all at the same time.
Distinguishing Signs: Beady hyper-alert little eyes are constantly in motion, waiting for someone to do or say something bad. Has loud and attention attracting hissy fits when confronted with everyday things such as advertising or corporate franchises. Rudimentary sense of humor is rarely activated.
18.Our Lady Of Intense Suffering – Is constantly persecuted. You’re probably persecuting her right now, you just don’t realize it. Became a Pagan because she decided it was that most persecuted religion of all. Can’t enjoy anything because it would be selfish to have any fun when so many are suffering.
Distinguishing Signs: Tales of woe. Even less of a sense of humor than Priest/ess of Political Correctness. Bristles when anyone says the words “masochist” or “whining”.
19.I Am Not Spock (at the moment) – Knows at least three filks about Cthulhu and at least forty Star Trek jokes. Has found a clever way to create simple furniture from stacks of science fiction paperbacks. Can name ninety different kinds of space ship.
Distinguishing Signs: Two fisted drinking style. Probably still lives with parents. Many cryptic buttons, badges, patches and other insignia. Too smart for their own good.
20.Het-Case – Insist that they aren’t homophobic; they just believe that Paganism is about a goddess and a god and they do it and what could be more obvious than that? It just doesn’t “work right” if you try any other way! Are secretly afraid that gays and/or lesbians are dying to jump their tender hetro bones.
Distinguishing Signs: Living spaces abound with depictions of satyrs with enormous genitals and huge-breasted, doe-eyed goddesses. Long manicured nails and wreaths of flowers (on females only — men have big, bushy beards instead).
21.Norse Code – Heroic and vikingly, these pagans often get into trouble with festival organizers and park rangers due to their fondness for running around with a huge battle-ax in one hand and a full mead horn in the other. They throw the best parties, but if you’re a wimp, you’re expressly not invited.
Distinguishing Signs: Look for the large, foreboding, biker-like persons wearing runes, with many pounds of amber dangling from their necks.
22.Pentacles, Inc. – Pagans have disposable income too, right? So how come they aren’t buying my hand forged Venus of Willendorf necklaces — they come in silver and gold, and each one has a genuine cubic zirconium belly button. Would you like a reading? Will that be Visa or MasterCard?
Distinguishing Signs: Has business cards featuring little embossed pentagrams. You’ve never seen so much Egyptian god/dess jewelry on a human being in your whole life.
23.Monster Truck Pagan – Can build own house, kill own food, school own children, and brew own hootch. Owns guns. Anointing oil is 30 weight. Scrying mirror says “objects are closer than they appear”.
Distinguishing Signs: Athame is a Gerber with a compass and waterproof secret compartment. Eats meat with visible twitches of pleasure. Ritual robes made from cammo fabric.
24.TechnoPagan – Often found discussing the best method of removing hot wax from keyboards. Seems unaccustomed to sunlight. Have had coven-mates for years whom they have never seen face to face, much less know which continent they live on.
Distinguishing Signs: Casts circle with #5 torx driver. Chalice contains Jolt. BoS is writtin in Perl. Refers to eclectic ritual as “cross-platforming.” Thinks “naked in your rites” means a non-GUI environment.