Friday, December 31, 2010

The New Year Cometh

And so, the obligatory reflection on the year post is here.

Both spiritually and personally, this has been a rocky year for me. (The two are inevitably intertwined, no?) It was, after all, the tail end of my Saturn Return. Probably the most significant change was the beginning of the first year of homeschooling my children. The time and energy that this demands is staggering, especially in this initial stage where rhythm is not yet established and Mom is learning along with the little ones. Commitments that I had made in previous years had to end, and even those that remained were scaled down in order to accomodate my new role as "teacher."

2010 had me:
-disbanding the coven I'd founded four years earlier because of time and energy constraints and taking on an apprentice to abate the loss;
-realizing that my visions of four small children tagging along with me to collect enough wildcrafted material for incenses and brews that made up a huge part of my "witch for hire" gig was unrealistic and facing the (very small but nonetheless significant) loss of income that came with this realization;
-facing the fact that I would not be returning to med school or getting a nursing degree as I'd planned this year;
-losing my own identity again and again as I struggled to find the balance between my various roles as mother, wife, teacher, priestess, and witch;
-planning a move across the country only to have those plans cancelled, leading to the realization that moving is probably imperative for my soul;
-facing my 26-years-estranged father and the barrage of feelings and deeply hidden issues this brought to the forefront (this shall be ongoing);
-finding joy in my deepening relationship with the land I live on but knowing I still have a long way to go;
-experiencing the silencing of a deity to whom I'd been devoted most of my life and hearing the call of a dozen others only to come full circle right back to the one I'd started with, albeit with a deepening connection to a couple others (still don't know how this is going to shake down).

I will spend tonight, New Year's Eve, enjoying our annual traditions with my family. I'd love to say that our menu is traditional Hungarian, but that'd be a lie. I'm not a fan of jellied pigs' feet, sorry. Instead we feast on a mixed bag: steak fondue, shrimp, sauerkraut or sweet and sour cabbage (depending on whether or not I've been diligent and actually made the sauerkraut), potato salad, rye bread, and wine or sparkling grape juice (for pregnant/nursing mamas and littles). I will interview the kids using the same list of questions we've been using since the twins could talk, record their answers, and place them in their designated baby books. The husband and I will listen to "crazy guy radio" (a show on NPR I've called crazy guy radio for so long that I've forgotten its real name) and its predictions of zombie apocalypses and alien invasions for the upcoming year while the children struggle to stay awake until midnight. When the clock strikes twelve, we will descend like locusts upon our front porch, armed with an arsenal of pots, pans, their respective lids, and various other kitchen implements and proceed to make the most obnoxious amount of noise possible to drive away all malefics from the shiny, clean slate of the new year (minus the husband, who is embarassed by this practice).

2011, treat me well. For all of my friends, as my Hungarian grandmother used to say: all things good to you, with just enough of the bullshit thrown in to keep you from getting bored.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas Eve

And so the Christmas goose, a family tradition since I can remember, has met a peaceful demise at my hands. I’ve been visiting him, handfeeding him, stroking him, adorning him with flowers, loving him since spring. Now that his death rites have been done, he is awaiting the oven under a careful blanket of snow.

Many thanks to Molly, the obliging, gracious and real live goose girl, who put up with my pagan jabberings and oddities without judgement or revoking my right to step foot upon your property.

All thanks and praise to Goose. May your flesh nourish mine and that of my children as I nourished you over these past months. Until you fly again…

(NOTE: Yes, once a year— and only once a year— I consume the flesh of my totem/spirit animal/whatever the hell you want to call it. If you’ve questions about it, feel free to ask. If you’ve hate mail to send, so be it.)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Solstice Divination #2

In my typical fashion, I couldn't leave my current ambiguous relationship with the divine alone on Solstice. Without even really thinking about it, I started pulling a card for each of the gods and goddesses that I've been feeling even remotely pulled towards. The results? Both surprising and totally not at the same time.

There's been NO question of my relationship with the Antlered One, so I pulled a card for him first. Six of Pentacles. Give and take, a fair enough assessment of things between us.

I went on my merry way naming divinities, asking for their message, and pulling cards. For both Hera (to whom I've been a lifelong devotee) and the Cailleach Bheur (with whom I've had a relationship for several years now) I also pulled the Six of Pentacles. I feel that this means that these are the two goddesses I should be focusing on.

The World card (successful conclusion to long journey) came up for both Dionysos and Holda. Even though it doesn't necessarily follow logically, my immediate response was that these two particular deities were important to me, but somewhat secondary to the Antlered One, Hera, and the Cailleach Bheur. The mere repetition of the cards is sign enough for me. I will be keeping communications open with them via altars and regular offerings.

None of the other cards were duplicated, but I did manage to draw all the Sword court cards plus the Ace for various deities. Hrmmmm.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Solstice Divination #1

It is a Winter Solstice tradition for me to divine which plant(s) will serve as my ally for the upcoming year. While it may seem odd to be concerned about plant allies during the dark of the year, it has always felt right to me. As the sun begins His return, I feel that the... consciousness (for lack of a better word) of the plant world begins to shift as well. I've tried for years to put words to this particular feeling that I get, but it defies my efforts to properly describe it. Machaelle Small Wright says of the winter solstice in her Perelandra Garden Workbook: "I feel that then the architectural blueprint is complete and its information is accessible to me."* This is as close as I've come to anyone describing my feelings of the solstice moment in terms of its affect on the plant world.

The process for revealing my upcoming ally is simple. I generally use a pendulum along with a list of plants/seeds that are available to me. Only once before have I been given more than one plant with which to ally during the year, and I've been doing this for seven years or so. This year? THREE. Three creatures of the green whose secrets I am to unlock. I'll admit, I'm a bit effing intimidated. I normally work with more plants than my designated ally, sure, but the ally is the one to whom I devote massive amounts of time and energy. I grow the plant, tend it, breathe with it, eat it, study it, make offerings to it, use it in witchcraft, etc. Needless to say, three plants is going to be a stretch for me. Perhaps the challenge will do my lazy ass good.

So, the plants: Poplar (specifically Balm of Gilead), Mugwort, and Dittany of Crete.

I've worked with both Balm of Gilead and Mugwort before, so I'm pretty excited to delve deeper into communion with them. Dittany of Crete is totally out of left field for me though. I've never used it in any form. Hell, I've never even seen the plant beyond a few pictures online. It is also unique in that I've typically been allied to plants that are found locally, despite the fact that my list always includes those that aren't local. I suppose this was inevitable. Dittany isn't even hardy in my zone, but I'll worry more about what to do with the plant next winter after I've come to know this beautiful herb a little more intimately.

*(NOTE: The referenced book is a bit New Agey for my taste, but as with many such books, there are definitely gems of wisdom to be plucked.)

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

We Sing the Sun

It is 1:33am. I am the only human awake in this house, though I hear the soft shuffling of the mice that live in one of the walls of our powder room. The ecstatic solstice drumming of years past has been replaced by my soft singing. Serving as midwife for the Sun need not entail waking my own slumbering babes or the husband-bear. It is a quiet, lonely vigil, but after the frenetic pace of the past couple days I welcome the peace (exhausted as I am).

Thursday, December 9, 2010

When the Words Don't Come...

This space has been neglected, I know. It isn't because I haven't been practicing, not at all. I've just hit one of those phases in my life, whether it be because of the season or the roadblocks being tossed my way, where I'm not completely sure that I'm willing to share my journey. Hey, I've got hella mutable energy in my chart, baby! Sometimes I ebb, sometimes I flow.

October through the beginning of January is a rather busy time for me. I'm not just talking spiritually either. There are birthdays and deathdays and all manner of intrusion into my precious time. This is the time of year where the elderly tend to enter the hospital or otherwise need more assistance than usual, and because I was accepted to (but did not attend) med school, family tends to rely on me as the go-between with doctors and as caretaker when necessary. I enjoy this type of work, really, so I'm happy to do it. It does have a tendency to consume one though.

And we have come to the dark of the year. The Old Woman has shaken her goose down comforter over the land and sent the feathers flying! Oh, the elation I felt as the white snow crunched beneath my bare feet whilst I collected that first snow of the season! This is also the first year where I can still feel the energy of the wonderful creatures of the green despite their underground slumber.

Still, I feel disconnected from this online world. I feel disconnected from writing. I feel disconnected from the idea of being part of a group, even to the point that I've disbanded the coven that I so yearned for just a few years ago. I don't know if I want to share anymore. Then again, I know that there will be an end to this withdrawal. It has ever been a temporary thing, so I'm hesitant to remove myself completely.

So, forgive me if the posts continue to be sparse. Forgive me if there are no jaw-dropping images to share or if the only thing I talk about is the menu for our family Holy Supper.

This too will have its end.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Dreams of the Vine

There have been so many instances in which I've wanted to write this post, or some facsimile thereof, but each time I've shirked at the discomfort and erased everything I'd written. I've come to one of those confusing, disquieting points during which things are... up in the air.

It began around the time of my Saturn Return, which of course will surprise no one. Saturn can be a ruthless sonofabitch. I suddenly began to feel called to a billion and one (<--- slight exaggeration!) goddesses... and none at the same time. Frustrating doesn't begin to describe it. I was a bit like a crow, attracted to each shiny bauble that caught my black eye but equally as likely to just forget about it and move on when the other eye saw a glimmer. I made a list the other day in true Virgoan fashion and realized that there are ten--TEN!!-- goddesses that I'm feeling drawn to. Having been a one goddess (hell, one DEITY) witch for most of my life, this is, um, new. And uncomfortable. And making me batshit crazy.

I figured that maybe when Saturn was done with me things would fall into place. I was okay with change (on helluva remarkable statement from this Taurus Moon, for sure). I knew that I might not come out on the other side with the divinity to whom I had devoted so many years and so much life energy. I thought, maybe, I'd end up with someone darker or more Saturnine or just something different. After all, I'm not 11 anymore. I thought maybe I'd even come out with more than one deity demanding my attention, though that sounds far more arrogant than it felt at the time. I was just biding my time.

But it didn't work out that way. Saturn left Virgo, and I was still left with a mess that seemed impossible to slog through.

So, I did what any reasonable person would do. I began to make offerings and devote my extra time (ha!) to study and asked that there be a definite sign that someone--anyone--was going to claim me.

Cue crickets.

(Okay, okay. That's not completely true. My apprentice wanted to give me a reading with his new Goddess Tarot and the culminating card happened to be my matron goddess. Of course, the reading had nothing to do with my crisis of faith, so I've been talking myself out of that particular "sign".)

But, amazingly, this post has nothing to do with goddesses at all. tee-hee! During the same time that I was struggling to puzzle all of this out and sitting quite comfortably with my relationship to the Stag King, someone else entirely decided to step in.

I'd done a bit of a ritual, a simple thing really, and asked that I receive some message or answer to my dilemma in my dreams that night. Dreamwork has always figured prominently in my practice, going back to the days of listening to my beloved grandmother telling her dreams to the walls when I was a child. That night, there was no vision of a goddess. There was only Dionysos in all his typical ecstatic, wine guzzling, devil-may-care glory. What? The? Fuck? Now, in all fairness, I'd been reading a book that included a little blurb about Dionysos and had quoted said passage on my Tumblr. So I shrugged it off.

Fast forward a bit. (In fact, I need to go back to my Tumblr and see just how much time has elapsed because it's been quite awhile.) It is the night of the last full moon before Samhain. I am dreaming of a man who constantly changes form. He is dangerous and alluring at the same time. He literally unzips his facade from the top of the head down and steps out a completely different person. In the end he is wearing a jewel green-toned poet shirt and has thick, but short, black hair. I think he is flirting with me, but he may be trying to kill me. I wake as I'm saying the name "Dionysus" aloud. My husband had just gotten out of the shower and heard me say the name very distinctly. (He thought I was dreaming about another man. hahahaha! I suppose I was, in a way.)

He hadn't introduced himself to me in the dream. Somehow, in that borderland between dreaming and waking, I apparently just knew.

This may be nothing. This may be a passing thing or a way for my mind to think of something other than my lack of input from the female divine. I don't know. But I haven't been able to shake it, and that means something I suppose.

I'm a bit frightened, I'll admit. I'm kinda hoping that nothing comes of this. I am decidedly NOT a Dionysian kind of person-- at least, not if my version of what that means is correct. Sure, I love a good bout of ecstatic trance as much as the next witch. I'm prone to dancing wildly and singing at the top of my lungs whenever the hell I feel like it. But I was also dubbed The Ice Queen in high school and college (not because I didn't put out but because I can be a stone cold bitch and have chronically cold extremities). I don't drink, like, AT ALL, though I've made mead and beer for others to consume. I hate the taste of wine. Don't even get me started on sex.

But none of that will matter if it's where I'm meant to be.

My first small, pathetic bunch of homegrown Niagra grapes

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Autumnal Equinox

While I'm still in the throes of a nine day modern interpretation (not my own) of the Eleusinian Mysteries, I was so uber excited for the opposition between the setting autumnal sun and the harvest moon last night to kick off the equinox celebrations. As I've mentioned before, I think it is incredibly important to keep my children in touch with the natural cycles of the planet they live on, so we try to celebrate the solstices and equinoxes outside. Alas! It rained here all day long!

A few cotton candy clouds are better than nothing, I suppose. We dashed all around town through a light sprinkling of rain for the last 10 minutes or so before the sun was supposed to set trying to find the ideal place for viewing, but the sun was never visible behind all the cloud cover. This picture was taken right at sunset, approximately 7:30pm for us.

There was no sign of the big, full harvest moon at all.

I have a get together with my (very young) apprentice on Saturday, and as he is currently very interested in crystal healing, I whipped up some small gem essences for him to try and charged them under the setting equinox sun.

Ghetto Pagan Mother of Four: Transports gem essences— crafted at sunset on the autumnal equinox and bottled in reused baby food jars— in her daughter’s Tinkerbell lunch box. And she can’t take a non-blurry picture to save her life these days. There’s a special ring of hell for this camera, I tell ya.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Today's Accidental Witchery

Today’s accidental witchery:

One of our family traditions is to make apple head dolls with the littles around the time of the autumnal equinox (it’s not an exact science, more like when the apples are ready and Mama has the energy). I use mine in ritual throughout the dark of the year, and the kids put on Samhain puppet shows with theirs. (‘Cause this mom doesn’t force her religion onto her children, but she does insist that they be aware of and take part in the seasonal changes of the planet they live on.) While making this year’s dolls today, the skewer from my oldest daughter’s went through the apple and into my hand. You cannot imagine the stupid amounts of clumsy that have been naturally bestowed upon me. Honest. A thick, glistening drop of ruby red welled up on my hand as I cursed, and when I yanked my hand away, said drop flew right into the mouth of my daughter’s doll. OH YES IT DID! See the picture? PROOF!

At which point she ran around the house screaming that she didn’t want a zombie apple head doll because it might try to eat her BRAAAAAAAAINS!

I think this mom may have to pull a switcheroo come Samhain.

The wound, clearly located on the Mound of Jupiter. That little bugger drank of the blood of my self-worth!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Birthday Tarot

Somehow I keep forgetting that I have this little blog, and now I'm very late in posting my birthday tarot spread. I'm lazy at best when it comes to tarot for myself. I prefer to keeps things as simple as possible, especially with something I am meant to track over a year. So, each year on the event of my solar return, I draw one card from the deck to represent my overall state of mind throughout the year and then draw one card for each month, laying them in a wheel around the first card. These were my results this year:

Center (self; mindset through the year)-- Ace of Swords reversed
September- VI of Pentacles reversed
October- IV of Cups
November- III of Cups
December- Knight of Cups reversed
January- Page of Wands
February- Empress
March- Emperor reversed
April- II of Wands reversed
May- VIII of Wands
June- Ace of Wands
July- Page of Pentacles reversed
August- Judgement

While I will reserve most of my personal interpretation for myself because it is, well, personal, I will say that it looks to be an interesting year. For one, this is the first time in many years that I have drawn any Major Arcana during my birthday spread. That in itself says a lot. It also seems that the spread is a bit Wand heavy, but that is not really unusual for me. Should be an interesting year...

Thursday, September 9, 2010

I Stayed

There are days when it is so difficult to stay in this body. I don’t know what this “disorder” is that I have, or even if it is a disorder at all. (Ancestors say: What you lookin’ for a cure for? It’s a damn gift, girl. It’s a damn gift. Doctors shrug.) I know too that some would literally kill to be able to leave their physical being with the ease (ha!) with which I do so. Still, I have four children to care for and can’t just go AWOL whenever. I NEED to be present for them. You’d think, after all these years, that I’d be a little more adept at keeping myself from slip sliding into the Otherworlds at random moments, but if there’s been progress in that area, it’s slight. That frustrates the hell out of me.

It was only a matter of weeks for me to be able to trigger the OOBE’s on my own, but getting back? Staying here when the pull comes at an inopportune time? That’s been one hell of a different, far more complex story.

I stayed today though. I fought the pull tooth and fucking nail, and I stayed.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Crystal Controversy

I'm a four planet Virgo, so one of the first things I was drawn to as a new pagan all those many years ago (is it really nearing 20 years!? Holy hell.) was crystals and gemstones. Herbs was first-- again, Virgo-- but crystals were not far behind. As taboo as this subject is in the more hardcore witch circles, I've never been ashamed to admit that I am drawn to pretty, shiny, chthonic things. I spent years carrying each stone with me, one at a time, and meticulously recording the results. I wore them, put them on my body, placed them under my pillow at night, meditated in circles of them, placed them in complicated grids, met them in dreams and trances... everything. Eventually, I did some not for profit crystal healing for others. I was still a teen and seriously considered doing this work for the rest of my life, but frustrations and concerns set in and I left crystal healing behind for good. I thought.

The subject has recently come back onto my radar, and I find my reasons for ignoring crystal healing falling on deaf ears. But I have this space, so I thought I'd type out my feelings on the subject as a sort of cathartic exercise for myself, even if no one is reading it. ;)

The first thing that made me reconsider my position as a crystal healer was the ethics of where and how the various crystals are collected, and we're not even talking about the obvious ivory, pearl, and coral here, which are probably harvested illegally. The subject of blood diamonds has gotten some attention recently, but these are by no means the only crystals which are harvested at the expense of other humans, animals, or ecosystems. Anytime there is a phenomenon that grows as rapidly as crystal healing has, there will be people who want so deperately to profit from it that they push the ethics envelope, and I want NO part of that. Sure, I can do my best to ensure that I only buy crystals from ethihcal, fair trade suppliers, but the overall problem left a bad taste in my mouth.

Then there is the misconception that crystal healing can do no harm. Go ahead and google it. See if you can't come up with at least a dozen sites proclaiming how "safe" crystal healing is. Oh look, I found one in about 2 seconds: "There aren't any bad side effects...". This illustrates perfectly a complete lack of understanding about healing in general. Let me give you an example.

At the point at which I was considering leaving crystal healing behind, I was approached by a woman in her 50's who had been treating herself with crystals. She'd been using hematite to relieve back pain from an old injury because she'd read or heard somewhere that hematite was useful for realigning the verterbrae, but the back pain was still getting progressively worse. What was she doing wrong? Well, she'd misunderstood the problem first and foremost. Back pain from an old wound is probably not caused by vertebral misalignment. It's more likely inflammation at the site and/or nerve pain. So this woman was treating the wrong thing. Second, she was using the wrong stone. In my experience, hematite aggravates inflammation, so the stone she was using was actually making her worse rather than making her better.

With herbalism, people are usually distinctly aware that some plants are poisonous, so they have a healthy dose of trepidation about treating themselves without doing at least a little bit of research. But with crystal healing, people will pick up any old stone and expect it to be all happy goodness and rainbows, no side effects at all (except for the good ones, of course). There are some safe crystals, just as there are safe, nourishing herbs, but you gotta do the damn research. Healing is healing. This means that you have to a.) understand a fair amount of human (or animal, if they're who you're treating) anatomy and physiology, b.) understand the characteristics of the healing medium you are working with and c.) be aware of the constitution and particular peculiarities of the specific patient you are working with.

Are you going to die from making a mistake with crystal healing? No, probably not, but that doesn't mean it's harmless. I don't mean for this to discourage anyone from seeking crystal therapy with an experienced, qualified healer, nor do I mean to disparage those who practice crystal therapy. I just wish that more people were willing to recognize that there are risks that come with ANY form of healing.

Sunday, August 22, 2010


Evening primrose (Oenothera biennis)

Native sunflowers

Goldenrod is just beginning to bloom

Still a few blackberries hanging around

Spiral cornmeal offering

Friday, August 20, 2010

Book Review: The Transformation of Hera: A Study of Ritual, Hero, and the Goddess in the Iliad by Joan V. O'Brien

Let me apologize in advance for reveiwing a book that is no longer in print and is not available on the mighty Amazon. You may commence with the throwing of rotten tomatoes now. Thank you.

The Transformation of Hera is a scholarly consideration of the queen of the Olympians. While the title's subtext will tell you that the scope of the book is limited to her appearances in Homer's Iliad--and there is much use of the literary clues left behind in this work-- the author's research goes far more in depth than this. It reaches back to the pre-Hellenic worship of Hera to flesh out the usual shallow, shrewish description of the goddess through an etymological breakdown of her name and various epithets, archaeological clues left behind in her temples, statues, and artwork and the historical facts that can be gleaned about her worship. The research is substantial and well cited.

Overall, I found this book to be enjoyable and full of information. This is not light reading, so be prepared if you aren't used to scholarly works. There is definitely a feminist bias to the book, which may turn some readers off, but didn't seem overdone to me. I would recommend this book to Hellenic reconstructionists, devotees of Hera, and anyone interested in Greek mythology or goddess spirituality.

Personally, this book is indispensable to me as Hera has been my patron goddess since childhood. I have reams of notes on this book and always discover something new each time I pick it up again. It's one of those books that seems to confirm things about the goddess that I have felt intuitively for a long time. I often study as a form of devotion to my gods, and this is the book I choose when I need to devote some time to Hera.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Hatin' on the Ancestors

One of the first things I did when the call came a few years ago to change up my practice was to set up a permanent altar to my ancestors. This has been an important, deeply changing practice for me, but it most certainly hasn't been without glitches.

As children, some of us are keenly sensitive to the dark, taboo subjects that exist within our families. Some are kept carefully and blissfully ignorant at least until such a time as our elders deem us old enough to be able to handle the shit that stains their pasts. I fall somewhere in the middle, aware that there were certain horrible facets of my family history but somewhat sheltered from hearing the knitty-gritty details of it all. I was kept far away from certain members of my family (though even that didn't protect me) and told just enough about why we had no contact with these people to make me wary if ever they should try to enter my life.

Now one of those people is preparing to die. In fact, he may be dead already. I'm not likely to know exactly when the event occurs because, you see, he is my maternal grandfather and, in this witch's ever so humble opinion, a complete fucking bastard. He is the man who held a gun to my grandmother's head while my very young mother watched. He is the reason that my mom grew up thinking it was normal to have a ladder outside your bedroom window to escape if Daddy ever came home. I had heard these stories as a child and have learned even harder truths about my mother's childhood since her death in 2001.

In a way, I can't wait to add his mug to my altar because it means he's dead and will never hurt anyone again.

On the other hand, I'll admit to some reluctance in "revering" his ass. He never hurt me. In fact, I only ever remember meeting him once. After my grandmother divorced him (in an era when divorce was unheard of and quite frowned upon), he remarried and almost completely severed all ties with his children. As far as I know, he only ever called when he needed money. My mother, despite being quite young when my grandma kicked his ass to the curb, was traumatized enough by her interactions with him that she had absolutely no desire to introduce him into my life. (Thanks, Mom!) Still, my love for my mom, my grandma, and other deceased members of my family make me feel the sting of disloyalty at honoring him in any way.

So I had to decide whether it was really appropriate to exclude good ole Grandad from the ancestor worship that I take so very seriously. In some cultures, only those relatives who were considered morally just and upright citizens are venerated after their death while in others the dead are all equal in their ability to create mischief or luck regardless of who or what they were in life so all are equally represented after death. Which way was I to go?

I decided to sit down and have a talk with Grandma and Mom to see what they had to say. In the end, it was decided that the old man's blood runs through my veins, and it is better to remember those whose lives we would wish not to emulate in order to learn from them than to whitewash a family's history and reject any lessons that have or could be learned from it. Besides, as Grandma pointed out, Hungarians believe that the dead can haunt this world for the first year after their death and so must be placated. We wouldn't want Grandad causin' trouble 'round here, now would we? Forgiveness may be something I will have to work at, but work I will. I will set a space for my douchebag of a grandfather and remind myself that my blue eyes, so beloved by my grandmother, come from him. I will remind myself that the man went through a war and was probably afflicted by PTSD in a time before it was recognized and that this probably affected his behavior. I refuse to make everything love and light, peace and joy with this man, but I won't dwell on the hate or feel guilty for placing the only picture I have of him, my grandparents' wedding picture, on my ancestors altar. It must be done.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Satan-Sent Familiar

While visiting your MIL you were requested to lock yourself in the upstairs bedroom while breastfeeding the baby (because heaven forbid your ADULT fucking FIL or ADULT fucking BIL, who doesn’t even live there anymore, might catch a partial passing glance of your filthy white breast!). Somehow the cat-who-refuses-human-contact inadvertently got locked in the bedroom with you, and as the sated babe turned her head from your breast, you were accosted by the feline who immediately went for your milk-moistened nipple. With visions of Satan-sent familiars dancing through your head, you quickly tossed the poor thing off before he could get a taste.

The in-laws did NOT find this story funny.

P.S.— It’s your own damn fault that you let them cow you into hiding while you nurse. Growing a fucking spine already.

Thursday, August 12, 2010


As Fate would have it, I did not get to celebrate Lammas ON Lammas. My wedding anniversary is July 28th, and since it’s pretty much the ONLY goddam time of year the husband and I get to go out by ourselves without children, I was not going to pass up the chance to go out on the 31st (when my MIL could finally babysit). Then on the 1st, I had to go to the ER with my eldest daughter (long story short: remember that link to the NPR story of the stronger, more virulent poison ivy? Yeah, my daughter decided to roll in it. The poison ivy, not the link.) which ended up shooting that day to shit. Then on the 2nd I whined and pissed and moaned about how things had been thrown off kilter and I just wasn’t going to do anything to celebrate this year.

But today. Today the kids were begging for their celebration. It was storming, and we all love to dance in the rain, so off to our little “secret” place we went. Yeah, it’s really an overgrown old quarry disguised as a public park. I played the part of Szepasszony, carefully removing my top to dance amid the storm clouds and weaving my spells into puddles. (Shhhh! Really, the kids don’t care that I was topless, you pervs. They’ve all received sustenance from the very breasts that were exposed.)

We looked for oats to harvest for oatstraw infusions, but none were found. Even though it was a pretty impromptu little festival, I was pretty disappointed. Then. THEN. I turned my rain slick torso to pluck my shirt from the nearby branch I’d draped it on and there HE was: a beautiful buck, staring right at us. MY god. The children went silent. We stared for awhile and then he sauntered on.

I wish I’d had my damn camera. The end.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


I am in a stadium sort of building, only much smaller, more the size of a public theatre. Imagine a football stadium shrunk down and with white stone (not marble... I'm not sure what it is) in place of the turf. I am singularly focused on my part in the Work we are doing, intent crystal clear. There are three other witches flying with me in an up and down pattern, quick up with a slightly slower descent, around the ovate center of the building. One of them looks uncomfortably close to Stockard Channing, and with that realization the dream becomes lucid.

I look around, my focus scattered now that I realize just where I am. The stadium seats are filled with beings, human and not. I am suddenly uncomfortable and cannot remember exactly what it is I was supposed to be doing. Stockard Channing gives me what I recognize as the signal that we have reached peak power and need to release our intent, but I can't shake the feeling of dis-ease so my contribution is half-hearted at best.

Wake up, I plead. WAKE UP.

And I do.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Who wouldn't...

love a native plant company named Genius Loci and whose website address is ""??

I mean, come on now. That's just right up this witch's alley.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Offering or Marking?

First let me say that it's an absolute fucking miracle that I managed to start this blog when Mercury wasn't retrograde. Absolute fucking miracle.

Now, onto the stuff.

What does a witch fertilize her plants with? Nothing less than a golden shower, baby.

I had finally, after searching for weeks, procured ONE lady's mantle for the garden. Luckily she was a rather robust specimen and was split in two (how's that for magic?). I had to make sure her blessing didn't go unthanked though. What better to give than something from my own body? This method of fertilization, urine diluted with water, goes back at least to the ancient Egyptians if not farther. Urine is sterile (unless the donor has a bladder/UTI infection) and safe and nitrogen rich and keeps the larger beasties away. An offering and a territory marker in one hit. Google it if you don't believe me. Because Google is fail-safe. :P

I usually add a few strands of my hair and menstrual blood if I can get it. Since I'm breastfeeding on demand, that last ingredient is hard to come by right now. A little of Mama's milk is substituted but does not carry all the same benefits.