Sunday, 30 December 2012

Live life.

Over the festive period I acquired a pack of angel cards. I've never been that keen on angel cards, having had a couple of packs in the late 90's.
This pack is a lot less fussy though, more a pick-a-card-day-for-inspiration pack than doing full on readings. I pulled my first card this morning and the message was to live my life. Very appropriate for me right now, so I am quite happy about that.

I need to just live. I need to stop wondering so much about future events. I need to stop hurting over people who don't give a damn about me. I've been holding on so tightly to a lot of pain and problems, I just need to let go and live my life.

And that's what I intend to do.

Friday, 28 December 2012

Change for the New Year.

I've been struggling for quite a while now with the whole celebrating life like our ancestors, you know, following the Celtic Year sort of thing.
Having New Year at Samhain is the biggest sticking point for me. I've been accused of not being a real witch because I don't feel that this particular period of time is the new year.
Well, tough bananas to anyone who wants to label me as a bad witch, or say I'm not a real witch, I guess you're entitled to your opinion, just as I am entitled to mine.

I live in a modern society and new year, whether I like it or not, starts on January 1st. It makes sense for me I so many ways to begin my year at the beginning of the calendar year. I can still be my witchy self, I'm not letting anyone down.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Delight.

Life is hectic, as always. Health issues still dominate our lives, but we've had an extra person's health added to the mix. Our youngest daughter, Emma, is pregnant with her first child. She has a low lying placenta which is causing a few issues, but there is still time for it to move up.

Today we went to the cemetery as it would have been my Dad's birthday. Whilst putting flowers on the grave something caught my eye, a red squirrel. My mother was particularly delighted as she has always wanted to see one but never has.
We all felt this was a gift to us from my Dad; we go to that cemetery all of the time and have done for years, yet we have never seen a squirrel. It just felt so special.

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Lest we forget.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.
Lest we forget. ♥


Thursday, 8 November 2012

That Eureka moment!

I haven't blogged in a while, been feeling sorry for myself over stuff. As is becoming the norm for this time of year, my schedule is ridiculously overloaded. I contemplated what I need to do between now and Yule and I just felt so overwhelmed by the enormity of it all.

As I drifted through the last few days, struggling to find my way, I felt myself wishing it were already December, my schedule lightens at the end of the month, although there are still things to do. I found myself worried at my eagerness to wish my days away. This in turn led me to wonder what lesson I am supposed to take from all of this. Confusion reigned supreme until I chanced upon a friend's Facebook share. It all became clear that I need to let go, I don't have to be in control of everything, I don't have to control every aspect of my day.

By letting go and taking each day as it comes, along with the many things I don't really want to do, I am relinquishing control and letting life be. And that is the lesson I really need to learn here.
Some of my busy times are out of my control and are necessary, but some things have come about because I MUST have control and can't let things be. But I realise that it is time now, time to loosen my grip on certain things and let them be, they will be what they will without my input.

Once I had realised this my life felt much lighter.

Thursday, 1 November 2012

What a year!

Remember Samhain 2011?

I do, I remember it well.  I remember it because it was at that point I decided to challenge myself to become more involved with the witchy side of my life.  I had been struggling for years and then the deaths of my brother and father so close together really hit me hard.  I felt like I had died inside, just ever so slightly and my spiritual beliefs were mocking me, so it seemed.  But I didn't want to give up on my beliefs, those beliefs had been serving me well since I was 14 and I figured that deep down inside of me I did still truly believe in my life as a witch.  I had been shaken to the very core, was hurting beyond belief but wanted to remain strong - such is my persona - and so I was able to do so.

I recognised that every time I faced a tough crisis my beliefs came into question.  Every time someone got sick, or something bad happened, or they died I felt like I had let them down.  If I were truly a witch then surely I would have forseen these dreadful events and been able to stop them.

You see how much pressure I was putting on myself?  Just who did I think I was?

But then a chance moment allowed me to look at my life and my beliefs and give me a break.  I looked at my own beliefs and parts of witchcraft that I felt I needed to look at for myself.  I challenged myself to think about this stuff for a year and a day.  It was never a how to be a witch type of challenge.  It seemed quite basic and lacking in depth at times, but it was a useful tool for me and that was the purpose of it.

In the beginning I blogged about it everyday, then a little less so, until finally I stopped altogether.  This was because it became far too personal, and whilst I have shared intimate details on my blog before, this was something I decided against doing in this instance.

The past year has been challenging at times, but the journey has been enthralling.  I have learnt an awful lot, more so than I imagined I would.  This is something I would highly recommend, especially if you are just starting our, or you find yourself challenging and questioning everything you believe in.

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

More health worries.

Regular followers of this blog will know I've had many health issues I've had to face these past few years. Well, I'm ill again, hence the lack of posting here.

I am anaemic and have just been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Not sure how I feel, I was told last week it was highly likely, but today the diagnosis is official.
I feel quite numb, my Dad was a diabetic and in the end complications of that killed him. I guess it's been praying on my mind since last week and I've been stressing about that.

I have to see the specialist nurse on Friday for medication etc and I feel like I've been given a death sentence at the moment.

Friday, 7 September 2012

Life

Life is hectic, sometimes in a good way, sometimes in a bad way. There have been many issues to deal with this summer, again, making me so disillusioned.

Today I looked out of my window and the beauty of life, flaws and all, just floored me. I am so grateful for so much, even when the bad stuff threatens to overshadow the beauty that surrounds me.

Life can be very cruel, but life can be so positively beautiful too.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Keeping up with the neighbours.

Actually, this is something I won't do. Here in Cumbria we have had so much rain during June and July that everything has grown so much. Don't get me wrong, the garden isn't wild, just well grown. The grass gets cut once a week, weather permitting. The trouble is , next door is cutting her grass so much and weeding and sweeping. She cut her grass last Wednesday, then again on Saturday and she's at it again now.
This is making the Mr. Twitchy and he wants our garden titivated. He's never been much of a gardner but her antics have made him feel inadequate.

I've included a pic of her grass to demonstrate my point.

These are the same neighbours who ripped out bushes and tress and flower beds when they moved in. Replacing them with turfed lawns that she demands to be mowed three times a week, and I'd he won't, she will. She complains too if the neighbours on either side, is being one lot, don't mow their lawns.

My lawn gets done once a week. I am not a believer in having it cut to within an inch of its life every few days, I feel once a week is sufficient.

Monday, 6 August 2012

Lessons

A whole ago both my daughters moved in with their men. DD1 lives 40 miles away and was visiting this weekend. As she doesn't drive, or have much money we drive her back when she comes visiting.
Taking her home today was fraught with travel chaos - typical Mercury Retrogade - and as I cussed at yet another slow coach I wondered just what lesson I was supposed to learn from this.
Our journey should have taken around 45 minutes, it took double that. The journey back started off a lot quicker, but about half way home we got stuck behind more slow drivers.
It's hard to think what I should take from that journey, but I'm sure there'll be something I am supposed to discover.

Perhaps I need to learn to be patient.

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Lammas Bleasings.

Happy first harvest. It's time to start taking stock of our year so far, count our blessings and sort the wheat from the chaff.

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Lammas is fast approaching, summer, what's that?  Seriously though, it seems strange to be preparing for the first harvest festival, the first inkling of Autumn, when we have yet to feel summer's golden warmth caress us.
The experts tell us that the Jet Stream is beginning to move up - something that it usually does in spring/early summer.  Once it does move up over the UK the weather should become more settled.
During its journey we can experience quite unsettled weather, rain, wind, typical spring/autumn like weather.

With this summer's record breaking wet weather the subject of Global Warming and who is responsible has reared its head once more.  I have always been in the camp that believes that GW is a naturally occurring phenomena, just as it has done in the past.  I am certainly no expert in this field but I have always felt that the earth would be warming up, with or without us humans.
That said, I am strongly against anything that is harmful to the planet - quite contradictory, I know - and am strongly in favour of doing all I can to minimise my impact here.

Makes me sound hypocritical, I know, but I have always felt that the politicians and the scientists have milked the GW topic for all they could.  The scientists get obscene amounts of money to fund their research, so they are certainly going to want us all to believe in the GW effect.  As for the politicians, well they will do or say anything to curry favour with the voters, so if that meant jumping on the GW bandwagon, so be it.  Most of them will have gas guzzling cars, buy the best of everything just because they can, not because they absolutely have to and waste more money, food and resources than the rest of us.  If we are becoming jaded over the whole GW concept, is it any wonder?

But recently I have been wondering if my thinking is right.  Are we, mankind, responsible for what is going on weather wise, or is it naturally occurring?  It is quite alarming to see the pictures of the floods, worldwide, not just in the UK.  Then there is the extreme heat in the US, all seems crazy.  Are we responsible?
Things do seem to be getting worse on the natural disaster front; recently my husband and I were discussing the increase in earthquakes that occurred last year, and now the floods all over the world.  You cannot help but wonder if mother nature is striking back at us mere mortals for all we have done, or if this kind of thing would have happened anyway.

It's difficult to have an impartial viewpoint either way.  In the meantime I go about my life, trying my best to be as green as I can, doing my best not to damage the earth as I go about my life.  I guess if we all had that mentality we would discover just what kind of impact we have had.  GW is a moot topic, we can't really prove either way what has gone before us.  So my philosophy of living my life in the greenest, most caring way I can is all I can do right now.  If we teach our children to respect the earth, its inhabitants, its resources, then we are doing the best we can.  People mistrust the GW concept because of the scientists and their obscene budgets, because of the politicians and their hypocritical messages, so it is up to us to educate our children to be kind and gentle with the earth.  Maybe then will we truly understand what is happening, when science isn't begging for obscene amounts of money into funding, when politicians aren't cosying themselves up to us, but when we all act in a respectful manner towards the earth.  Until then GW remains a moot subject and extreme weather and natural disasters rage on around us.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Sorting life out

I seem to be on a never ending cycle of sorting my life out.  At this moment in time I am very disillusioned with a lot of things that I once held dear - certain people on FB/twitter/forums etc, having to do things a certain way, belief in certain things......
I have spent very little time online in recent weeks because I feel a lot of troubles and distractions are caused by certain things on certain social media sites.  Don't get me wrong, I love these sites as much as the next person, but certain groups of people seem to have an uncanny knack of sucking the very life out of you and leaving you feeling so disillusioned.  I decided to delete said people but have not really spent much time on FB since.

Besides, my blahness with life seems to be in every area of my life and not just confined to snarky mares on FB.  I think the weather plays a huge part in it too.  I love weather, the extremes of weather, everything about weather.  But in Cumbria it has rained almost everyday since early June, we have had the occasional dry day with sun, but largely it has rained and rained and rained.  We have been on flood alert quite a few times, with June 23rd being the worst when we were almost flooded.
There is such an air of despondency all around me, mainly brought on by the lack of sunshine, it's no wonder I feel so blah and meh.  I do like rain, but when it has been never ending even I get sick of it.

I was supposed to be going to counselling but I decided against that.  After my initial consultation way back at the beginning of June my next appointment was July 11th.  I cancelled.  I was able to work on myself, using Reiki and self help techniques which have helped enormously with the problems I was having.  I think it is shocking that it took a few weeks to have my initial consultation and then a further five weeks for my second appointment.  I gave my place up on the programme for someone who needed it more, we should never have to wait this long for help.

Mercury went retrograde yesterday, until August 15th - I think.  In the run up to this weekend the communication problems we have been experiencing have been pretty bad, leaving me wondering just how bumpy the ride is going to be.

I am pleased to say that staying off FB etc, working on my problems and trying not to get the wet weather get me down has really helped me focus.  Hopefully this time I will have learnt what I am supposed to and won't have to go over this stuff again.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Solstice Blessings.

I know astrologically this was yesterday, but I always stick to the 21st for Litha, Yule, Mabon and Eostre.
Today is really horrid here in the North, yesterday was lovely, but I guess that's just a typical Cumbrian summer - virtually non-existent.

To celebrate I had a lovely meal earlier and then I performed my ritual, then it was time for my meditation.  During the meditation - not one of my own - I was to visulaise myself within a stone circle with others, only those who I sensed were with me were my deceased loved ones.  That was quite unexpected, but very pleasant.  I've been having a bit of an obsession again just of late - the same obsession I am having to receive counselling for - so it's kind of helped with that.
Anyway, so the sun has reached its zenith and in a few days we will feel the earth shift once again - I always sense the standstill around the sabbats, and sense when we are on the move again - nothing lasts forever, time is precious to us and we should make the most of our days.

Wishing you all a Blessed Litha, may the sun shine on your life (even if it is wet and dark like much of the UK) and bring joy and peace to your world.

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Thankful Thursday 14/06/12

Today I am thankful that my life is drama free.  I have been ill with food poisoning and you know how it is, you get sick and the chores mount up and life just gets so out of control.  I am just thankful that I have been able to get everything back into shape without having to deal with all the dramas that usually crop up too.

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Thankful Thursday - 07/06/12

Today sees me feeling both thankful and sad at the same time, over the same thing.  I am always thankful that I chose to remove DD2 from school for her final year as the bullying she was being subjected to had gotten to a stage where she was being physically hurt on a regular basis and the school refused to take appropriate action.  I  remain thankful that I decided against sending DS to secondary school for the same reasons I removed DD2 - I had lost all faith in the school system.
I have just been looking at my friend's daughter's pictures from her last day of school (they only go in for exams now in year 11) and her prom night and it saddens me that DD2 never got that experience.  I have seen a few pics over the last few years of prom night and last day of school and to be fair the majority of those happy souls are the popular kids.

I don't want to sound like I am kid bashing here, but mostly these experiences are savoured by the skinny girls, the ones who love the hair, make-up and fashion.  Those girls who are so pretty and popular that bullies just seem to pass them by.  In fact a huge chunk of this group are bullies - some things never change.  When I was at school this was the case, when DD1 was in school (and she went all the way from reception class to sixth form) this was the case, DD2 never fit in as she wears glasses, isn't skinny and has dyspraxia and it still goes on like that now.
DD2 never felt like she missed out on the whole prom, last day thing as she was so traumatised by those girls and boys in her year group that all she wanted to do was move on from them.  But that makes me feel a little sad that something we now class as a rite of passage was never experienced by my daughter because she had to be removed from school for her own safety.
I then begin to hear tales of a small fortune being spent on prom dresses and accessories and shoes and make-up and hair dos, not to mention the demand for a new outfit - and shoes and accessories and hair and make-up - for the last day of school and I feel thankful that I haven't had this pressure.  DD1's year group were the first to do the whole not wearing uniform on the last day at the school she attended, so they were told to wear something smart.  In five years it seems to have gone from wearing something smart to a no expense spared in the outfit stakes.
DD1 didn't want to go to her prom, she said all of the "plastics" were being ridiculous over it and that was putting her off.  A plastic is a girl so obsessed with hair, make-up, her appearance, that her whole life revolves around it.
So I have never been a stressed out mother doing the hair-tearing over prom night.  I have never felt the need to buy my kids anything so expensive that it takes me months to pay back the money I would have had to borrow.  Smartly dressed doesn't mean a fortune on new clothes and everything that goes with that.

Yep, I am most definitely thankful today that I am not going through that kind of pressure.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Try something new Tuesday. 05/06/12

This week my Try something new task was to try and get relaxed.  When life is being stressful the usual methods don't always work, someone will want something and I am not so good at saying no - not always.  Tomorrow I have my first counselling session and I am feeling pretty freaked out about it - it is a phone appointment which will last around half an hour.  I knew that I would struggle to relax today so I recorded an old movie.  The movie was a Cliff Richard musical comedy.
I have never been overly keen on Cliff Richard, he always comes across as pretty smug to me, but according to my mother and my deceased Aunt he was pretty funny in movies he starred in throughout the sixties.  Normally I would ignore such a movie, but needing to switch off from my troubles and relax (and remember, the usual methods aren't helping) I sat through this movie - Wonderful Life.  It bordered on farcical, I'm not sure if it was supposed to or if that was just how I viewed it.  But it really did the trick, helped me relax enough to fill in a long public holiday afternoon.

I am aware that so far since I came back to the blog I have done very little pagan themed.  My point today is that when all else is failing sometimes an ordinary thing can help us more than any esoteric thing ever could.  Instead of me trying every relaxation technique that I know I decided to try a normal thing, watch a silly movie, and yep, it worked just as well as the arsenal of relaxation techniques that I have under my belt.
Trying something new does not necessarily have to be elaborate, all it has to be about is you doing something different that you probably would never think to do.

Give it a try.

Saturday, 2 June 2012

Saturday posts.

When I try to stick to theme for each day on my blog I get so lost on what to do for a Saturday.  I have spent a while thinking this over and not coming up with anything really good enough (in my opinion).  Saturday's are even more fun than Fridays and so I did not want to bog my day down with too much technicality.  With this way of thinking in mind, I have decided I will use the day to read and review a pagan/witchy themed book.
You know, I have so many books in this genre that I need to get through, so this is as good a way as any to get on top of them.

My first book is:  Be Your Own Life Coach by Fiona Harrold.  I received this book when I was on my Reiki course.  The Reiki Master, a lovely woman called Marion, set out a few books from her mind, body and spirit range that she no longer wanted and offered them to us students.  I immediately felt drawn to the book I picked, so going with my gut feeling I chose that particular one.  I attempted to read it a couple of days after my Reiki 1 course, but somehow it was never the right time to sit and read.  Today I plan to make a start on this book and write about it - or what I have read of it - in next Saturday's post.

Friday, 1 June 2012

Feel Good Friday.

Friday's, for me, are the end of the week.  I know I don't work, but I do home educate and this obviously takes place during the week.  Once Friday rolls around I want some fun, some relaxation, some good times, the right balance of all of these things.
I often find people are easier to deal with on a Friday, probably because the weekend is fast approaching and they have their own minds on their own fun pursuits.  So for me Friday has always had a kind of magickal appeal and feel to it.

On a Friday on my blog I am going to try and post about something that has that feel good factor.  This could be anything from a random act of kindness to a fun filled activity.  This week - as it is short notice for me and I haven't been very good with my organisational skills this past week or so - I am opting for a random act of kindness.  My random act of kindness is something really simple, although it will make me pay later.  I am going to drive to my daughter's flat and pick her up.  Her boyfriend is going away for the weekend and she had plans with her best friend.  However, the best friend is being off so my daughter cancelled the weekend and is coming to stay with us until Monday.  The trip there and back today is 80 miles and it will make my neck as sore as hell, and my muscles and joints won't feel so good, but knowing that my daughter has company this weekend is good enough for me.  Being kind to her when her friend is being a royal pain in the butt gives me that feel good feeling.

Thursday, 31 May 2012

Thankful Thursday 31/05/12

Today I am thankful that my daughter has woken up to a situation in her life and is doing something pro-active about it.  For too long this person has made a fool out of her and now she has finally woken up to what has been going on.  As a parent it is difficult to stand by and watch your child make a mistake, but I think I have done a pretty good job of keeping my beak out of it and now I am thankful she has come to the realisation of how things are all by herself.

I am also thankful that I went on the Reiki 1 course, this has given me so much over the past couple of weeks I am wondering how I ever managed without Reiki.

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Try something new Tuesday.

As I am all for bringing fresh ideas and content to my blog I thought it would be a good idea to do my themed posts - a different theme for each day of the week.  It sounds both easy and mundane, but this being a witchy themed blog means I have to do something within a witchy theme.

I am still pretty much up in the air, lot of different ideas buzzing around for different things - some blog related, others not - and this meant I had forgotten to do a post for today.  I also had no idea what the heck I was going to try either.  I silently chastised myself for letting another day go by as I prepared our evening meal and that was when it hit me.  I was trying out a new recipe - not really my own, but a variation on a branded seasoning mix.
So, without further ado, here is what I made.

Creamy Chicken and Basil Linguine.

The seasoning is from this range   product link  and I added the following - 2 large chicken portions (not sure about the weight, they were large ones though), a handful of cherry tomatoes, cut into quarters, mushrooms, sliced, mozarella cheese, cut into small pieces, and half a pint of milk.  The recipe calls for parmesan cheese and broccoli florets, but I chose not to use them.  I also changed the method of cooking too.

I chopped the chicken portions into bite sized pieces and browned them
I sliced a few mushrooms, about 6
I quartered the cherry toms - there were roughly 6 or 7
I cut a shop bought pack of mozarella into small pieces.
All of these ingredients were placed in my slow cooker and to that I added the half pint of milk and the packet of seasoning mix.  I gave it a good stir and then cooked it on the high setting for two and a half hours.  Just before this was ready I cooked the linguine.

I have to say, it didn't look that appetisiing when it was served up and I did wonder if I should have stuck to the ingredients and instructions on the packet.  Once I had my first mouthful though I was pleasantly surprised.  This was really tasty and gorgeous, and I can assure a fussy eater like me rarely says that about food!
I really enjoyed the meal, as did N.  We both agreed it looked like a plate full of sick when we served it up, but the taste was divine.

Monday, 28 May 2012

Music Monday - 28/05

It's been a while dear blogger.  I have been so busy since my Reiki 1 (which was just amazing, by the way) I have barely had a minute to myself.
A few changes, starting with the introduction of Music Monday.

Today's song is included in the movie, New Moon.  It is by the Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and is called Done All Wrong.

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Saturday

Saturday's, for me, are supposed to be all about letting my hair down and doing as little as possible when it comes to doing things for others.  It has recently occurred to me that despite all of my health issues my family lean on me just a bit too much.  As my husband pointed out, I really am too kind hearted.  With this in mind I planned to extend the Sunday ritual that I have into the entire weekend.
On a Sunday I always do at least one restful thing, mostly it is a little time spent meditating or visualising and it is the only day I ever seem to actually stick to my guns on such things.  With the recent Super moon I feel more exhausted than ever, the energies have been greatly amplified and dramas that would never normally be dramas have knocked spots off the usual dramas!
I have had my fill of family daftness this week.  I call it daftness, well, because it really was only daftness.  The energies of the Super moon seemed to intensify the daftness and turn it something it didn't need to be but it has drained me so much that I thought it was high time I started saying no - more than I do.

You know, I'm full of good advice for others when it comes to problems and dramas in their lives and generally family and friends rally to me for that advice.  One of the most common pieces of advice I give is learning how to say no, yet here I am not heeding my own advice and feeling so run down.
So I decided last night that my weekends are now going to be all about relaxation and restfulness and meditation and other stuff like that.  Next weekend I will be doing my Reiki level 1 and I want to be in a good space, emotionally, for that.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Tuesday.....

.......is to be my day for trying something new - whether witchy related or not.

 Today I actually listened.

That sounds obvious but when you take on board what I was actually listening to you will understand.  My husband is so badly affected by his health problems that he is entitled to a car on the Motability car scheme.  We got our first car in 2009 and it is due to be upgraded this summer.  You don't buy the car, you lease it.  If you meet the criteria of something called Disability Living Allowance and you receive the highest mobility rate, then you can swap your money for a car.  You have to have at least one year left on your claim and you must be receiving the highest rate, and ideally be receiving this money long term - my husband has his for life as he will never get any better, in fact he will get progressively worse.
So, we had an appointment to see our dealership today and I was determined that I was not going to come away with anything less than what I wanted.  My husband has never drove so it falls to me to do the driving and I guess the car really needs to meet my standards more than his.
Before we went there I insisted that we would go elsewhere if things weren't up to my expectations and DH agreed.  As soon as we went in I knew that I wasn't going to get the type of car I wanted, or at least had hoped for.  Usually this is the point where I would close my mind and either terminate the meeting or just switch off from what is being said.  I have usually made my mind up to have things my way or no way.

But because I have insisted on trying something new each Tuesday I thought I could actually really listen to what this guy had to say.  So I listened and I took in all he had to say and I actually learnt a thing or two.  I may not have the exact car I wanted in terms of size and boot space - don't ask! - but I have a newer model of our current car and boy the gadgets in it are just awesome!

We don't actually get our car until mid August, these things take time and there are all the relevant paperwork checks to go through, but I am quite happy with what we are getting.  If I hadn't listened I would have insisted that we went elsewhere and probably ended up with a bigger car, but we would have been out of pocket on the fuel front and I wouldn't be getting my on-board snazzy gadgets.

Try something new Tuesday has taught me that bigger isn't always better, and sometimes it pays to sacrifice what you think you want.  It has taught me that I switch off from people too easily when I have already made my mind up about something and I can see how this has gotten me into trouble in the past.  It is a lesson I needed to learn and I am going to be taking on board the lesson I have learnt and utilise it in my life.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

The Supermoon.

I wrote this blog post last weekend, when the energies of the Supermoon were really strong.  Since then I have noticed that they are still influential, especially in areas that would be a mere hiccup and not the major drama they are turning into.


The moon is really close to earth right now.  When she rises she looks so close that we almost believe we can reach out and touch her.  Different theorists have different theories - as they would ;p - about how she will affect us.  I have personally felt an intensity in emotional issues that haven't been prevalent for a very long time.  People who I have no contact with stirring up trouble and dragging me into it; family issues that I thought were long resolved got dragged up again; petty annoyances with my not so wonderful neighbours have really intensified.  It's like everything on an emotional level for me is being super charged and thrust back at me, requiring me to deal with it NOW.

I have felt particularly helpless in all of these areas.  I know I haven't done anything wrong in regards to the not so close and ex friend issues - because I haven't seen them, spoken to them or had any contact with any of them.  I cannot fix something I haven't broken, nor can I get involved with something that I have no role in.  A stirrer is stirring the pot of emotional drama and trouble and everyone involved is acting exactly how she wants them to - including taking potshots at me because she loves to sulk about any of her "set" interacting with me.  She only needs to say I have "abused" her and the drama starts - again.  But I haven't spoken to her or any of her "set" in what feels like forever so I know that what she is saying is all a pack of lies, just to cause trouble and the Supermoon is adding that extra bit of bite to the already volatile situation.
The family dramas are just silly things and yet I feel helpless - as I do with the friendship/ex friend issues - on both counts it is down to petty behaviour and I am loathe to get involved with such childish shenanigans; like I pointed out, I am 41 not 14.
The neighbour issues are the usual - next door parking along my front when they have their own space.  They haven't had the opportunity this past fortnight as DD1's boyfriend had left his car here while he was away doing exams.  His car was moved, (by him), yesterday and within a couple of hours they were back on our front.  The next-door-but-one idiot  has bought her supposedly seriously ill son a motorbike.  He is 14.  He revs it in the back garden for hours until she gets sick of the noise and then he rides off on it - no helmet, no insurance, no license.  So more dramas I have no control over, but getting under my skin all the same.

Generally I rise above the neighbours, because I know they have no manners, are ignorant and selfish and if they think their behaviour is annoying they do it all the more.  The family stuff I tend to keep out of and let them sort themselves, being on hand if they ask for advice, that sort of thing.  As for the friend thing, well, these are the same set of friends/ex-friends I have had dramas and troubles with for as long as I can remember.  I came to the conclusion a while ago that they aren't my friends and I moved on from them.  That my name has been thrown back into the mix for one troublemaker's perverse pleasure is just unfortunate I guess.  I refuse to be drawn into whatever dramas they are having and I know it had nothing to do with me.

As with all full moons the energies will ebb and flow, the intensity will lessen.  I guess it's just a matter of riding the crest of the wave until the emotional rollercoaster passes.  I've donned my hard hat, taken a deep breath and found things to do to keep me out of the way of all of this drama that is trying to drag me in.

I took a few pics of the supermoon last night and over the past couple of days.




Friday, 4 May 2012

Happy Birthday to me.

 I woke up this morning to the news that another so called friend had unfriended me because of THAT liar I know.  As always, those concerned can never do me the honour of asking me if her stories are true, they just believe her rubbish and stop all contact with me.  This used to really hurt and sadden me, but now I know that if they were truly friends of mine they wouldn't have cut ties with me on such a flimsy whim.  I know I deserve better than their treatment of me and I am moving on from such petty nonsense.  So Happy Birthday to me..xx..

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Thankful Thursday.

I used to do this on my blog, giving thanks for things in my life, whatever they were.  Then I stopped, for whatever reason, but in recent months I have seen people doing this kind of thing on their blogs, FB pages etc, so I figured that I might as well get back into the giving thanks.
Someone I know gives thanks everyday, whereas one or two others do this on a specific day - generally a Thursday.  I thought I would stick to the Thursday, I can get slack when it comes to doing regular stuff, but once a week isn't as hard to stick to as everyday.

This week I am thankful for everyone who has helped me during my dark times; even though I don't always open up as much as I should,  being able to say something when I need to, or even knowing that someone is there for me has helped me enormously.  In turn this has helped me get back on my path and I am thankful for that too.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Last night.....

........I performed my first ritual in a very long time.  This may seem unintersting and not that much of a big deal to most, but to me it marked the dawning of a new era.  It represented the fact that I have been able to move forward from that horrible place I have been dwelling for such a long time now.  As corny as it sounds, I really didn't expect it to feel so.......wonderful, but it did.  I'm trying to find the right words for how I felt, but nothing is right, so I'm not going to try.  Those of you who have felt the beauty and magick of rituals and spell casting will know what I mean.

I have to say, I felt relaxed all evening, slept well - for a change - and was able to greet the new day (today) with enthusiasm.  Feeling so good and positive has meant that I was able to get creative for the first time in I don't know how long and actually get some writing done.  I also was able to make sense of some very intriguing signs that have been presenting themselves to me for quite a while, only I had no idea what they were all about.
I feel as if I have just worked out how to get out of an intricate maze and have been greeted by a beautiful sunny day after wandering, lost, in the dark and gloomy overgrown hedges of the maze.  I don't think everything about feeling so good can be contributed to performing a Beltane ritual, but I think it certainly helped me refocus my thoughts and stagnant mind.

I am happy to be walking back into the sunlight after months in the darkness.

Saturday, 28 April 2012

Sharing our Grief.

Another Daily Om picked at random.

This OM looks at sharing our grief and opening ourselves up.  This post isn't exactly the same, but I think I need to share it all the same.

I have a friend, Sally, she lives a long way from me but we connect quite often to share joy and sometimes pain.  Last year when I was struggling to come to terms with my brother's death my Dad got rushed into hospital.  At the time I was leaning on Sally, from time to time, she let me talk.  I needed it and I am always grateful she was there.  But then the situation with my Dad got worse and I found I just couldn't talk about it with anyone outside of the family.  I don't know if this upset Sal, I really hope it didn't, but it wasn't anything she had said or done that made me withdraw, I really just couldn't discuss it.

The situation with my Dad seemed to improve at first, he was admitted to hospital and we believed he would get home.  But then things took a really drastic turn.  His kidneys began to fail and we were told he wouldn't get any better.  Just before this episode he had been his usual self and my mother had told him that we had to have a meeting with a social worker before he could come home.  He was worried, naturally, but I didn't think it was so bad.  Then my mother sat in the meeting and all but told the social worker she didn't want my Dad to come home.  She couldn't cope with him.  I had to tell the social worker that yes he could come home and yes there was room for him to have a bed downstairs and yes care could be set up for him.  So this was to be arranged, but first they might put him in respite care.  My mother agreed and I refused.  My mother told him and he was very upset.  I told him I would never allow them to put him in a home and eventually calmed him down.

After this he seemed to rapidly go down hill.  He got an infection - a UTI - which was really bad and thus affected his kidney function.  He withdrew from the world and visiting was always an awful experience.  He wouldn't speak to any of us - well, he actually would talk to me and my husband some of the time - and he was refusing food.  He was in a room on his own, then back on the main ward, then back in his own room.  There was one day, not long after they told us his kidneys were knackered and there wasn't anything they could do and he seemed particularly chatty with me and DH.  He had tears in his eyes all of the time and this stage lasted about a week.

My family became divided.  My mother was so grief stricken over the loss of her son that she refused to really have anything to do with my Dad.  I had to force her to visit.  She wanted him out of her life.  My brother P agreed with her, as did my cousin's wife.  In fact my cousin's wife had a huge influence over my mother back then.
I could understand their feelings - he wasn't a brilliant father to my brothers, he was slightly better with me.  When I was a teenager I hated him - I guess that's the norm during the teen years though.  I was the only one who would stand up to him when he was ranting at us as kids, I never took any of his crap.  When I had my own kids he loved having them.  But by the time brother P (only me and P have kids) he was too sick to look after them and I think this narked him and his wife.
There was some genetic problem that resulted in my younger brother being severely disabled and when he died my mother blamed my Dad for this.  She switched off from him, left him to fend for himself and this is how he ended up in hospital.  At one stage I wondered if she had tried to kill him, though I know she hadn't now.

It was like nobody wanted him anymore except me, my husband and my kids.  My mother visited because I forced her to.  Brother P and brother I visited because my husband had words with them over how unfair they were being and brother A did visit, but he has schizophrenia so it wasn't always easy getting him to go.

I fought for almost 12 weeks to get him home.  I felt as if I had failed.  Then I realised that I couldn't have done anymore and that was when I became angry.  Angry at my Dad for giving up on life.  Angry at my mother and brothers for not being better with him.  Angry with the hospital who caused his nasty infection that led to his death.  Angry with my brother who had died four months earlier.  Angry that my mother only seemed to care about that and nothing else.
I wanted to grieve, but I didn't want to go through the pain.  I cried once, for a couple of minutes and then I switched off from it all.  I had almost suffocated when my Aunty had died in 2005.  The pain was so bad I had switched myself off  from that too, but my mother's grief had almost floored me.  I didn't want to feel that again so anger was my only option.

My Dad taught me how to be a fighter.  How to be tough and fight for what I believed in.  How to take on the world and win.  When he died I felt my age - I was a few days off turning 40 - and it all came flooding back to me; my own baby dying in 1996, DH's illness that almost killed him, my Gran dying around the same time, my Aunty dying in 2005 and then my brother.  I thought about another Aunty who had died just before my Dad.  She was in her 80's and died from natural causes, but this just made me more depressed about getting older.

Ever since then I have remained angry.  Then my half-cousin's wife hung herself at the end of July last year.  She was the same age as me and I felt even worse.  My brother had been 29 when he died, my baby hadn't even been born.  Life was just too cruel and I was so mad at it, at them for not fighting.  I was unable to sleep, I needed to know that everyone was still alive in my house and so began my nightly ritual of struggling to get to sleep, then after only being asleep for a couple of hours I would wake up in a blind panic and I would have to get up to check everyone was still breathing.
I have driven myself mad with this crazy ritual and this is why I am seeking help.  I need to move on from this stage, from the anger and hurt and raw pain that eats at me everyday.  From the awful experience we went through when my Dad was still alive, in hospital and feeling like his wife no longer cared for him.  I need to accept it all and move on from it.

I know this post is very disjointed and probably doesn't make an awful lot of sense.  But I wanted to share my grief with some people who have been kind enough to be there for me over the past 16 months.  I have said time and again that I didn't want to talk about "it" because "it" hurt too much.  But getting "it" out into the open has helped me enormously and that is the purpose of this post.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Anger.

I have mentioned a few times that my family have been bereaved five times since December 2010.  One death is difficult enough to deal with, but five........

I feel so angry with three of them for giving up on life and I know that this preventing me from moving onto the next stage in the grieving process.  I know I am trapped in this stage and I know that this is causing me the problems I am having with sleep and the obsession about who is going to die next.

I faced something similar when my son was born 15 years ago.  The year before - 1996 - I fell pregnant and we were over the moon.  But I lost the baby and encountered a pain I thought would engulf me whole.  Had I not had two daughters to care for I think I could very easily given in to the pain I felt.  A few months later I was pregnant again with my son, but I spent the entire pregnancy feeling terrified something would happen.  After he was born I suffered from Post Natal Depression.  One of the worst things I went through was not being able to put my son down.  I felt that if I put him down to sleep somewhere he would die, only I could save him by holding onto him all of the time.
After months of therapy and almost a year on anti depressants I discovered I was angry with my baby for dying and that I had held on to that anger so tightly that is engulfed me.  It was only when I learnt to let go of the anger that I was able to move forward and mourn my baby.

Anger is such a self destructive emotion if we don't let go of it.  Anger can be a good thing if we use it to channel our emotions in a constructive manner, but if we don't then we bottle up that anger and it eats away at us, making us miserable, making us ill, causing us problems.  We have to learn to let go of our anger and resentment, free ourselves of the negativity that these emotions fill us with, only then can we move forward with our lives.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Feeling the pain.

Today I picked another of the Daily OM emails at random and the message was about tuning in to our pain to listen for the message.  This really piqued my interest, given the amount of emotional pain I have experienced over the past 16 months and beyond.

I have to say here and now that five deaths in sixteen months have taken their toll on my emotional wellbeing.  I hate admitting that I am in need of help but I am so fed up of feeling the way I do that I have booked myself an appointment with my GP.  My problem is that I find it difficult to fall asleep, stay asleep, and get enough sleep.  Now, when I say this I mean that I cannot sleep on a night, falling asleep during the day isn't so bad, I quite often get a decent sleep during the day.  This was all good and well when I was laid up in bed but it is not so good when I need to be up and about.  I started taking herbal tablets to help me sleep and they are working to a certain extent.  But they don't keep me asleep all night, well not all of the time anyway.

The pain I am experiencing relates to death.  I have become obsessed with it.  I have panic attacks over it.  I am terrified to fall asleep because I don't know who will have survived the night.  It's pretty grim feeling this way and that is why I have booked an appointment to see my GP.  But I must stress I don't want to numb everything with pills.  I am not sure what I hope to gain from an appointment with my GP, maybe I am in need of some counselling, who knows?

Anyway, this is what the message from the OM was about; our first instinct is to numb everything with medication.  It is telling us that we should listen to our bodies and minds and see if we can hear what message there is.  We don't have to rush into dosing ourselves up with medication in order to heal our pain, although if we truly do need urgent medical attention we should go for it.
I know I hurt over the deaths of five loved ones, and I know I hurt a lot.  I know that the pain is eating away at me and this is because I cannot talk about it.  I cannot talk about it to anyone because I am so damn angry with my brother and my father for giving up - and I know that sounds stupidly selfish.  I know I need to let go of the anger that I am holding on to so tightly, I know it is the anger that is making me fearful and unable to sleep, but I just don't know how to let go of that anger I have inside of me.

I have found my message and am acting upon it for the good of my health.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Daily OM

I have added a link to the Daily OM on the side of my blog.  The Daily OM is pretty cool, I get email updates/OM's all of the time and never have nearly enough time to read them through.  I'm kind of hoping this will inspire me to read them more often and act upon the advice/info contained within each message/email.

I have each OM saved in a folder in my email account and I just picked one out at random.

The one I chose to read is discussing following nature's cycles.  This is something I have now gotten into a big way.  When I first became incapacitated I was very frustrated at not being able to just do what I wanted/needed.  I soon discovered that most of the stuff I was hankering after doing was not really all that important, it was just stuff that I had began to fill my life with.  For the first few weeks I spent a lot of time sleeping, this did worry me as I thought it was due to the fibro.  Eventually I realised it was what my body needed for its own good.

The OM goes on to suggest we balance our lives with nature, making a few suggestions as to how we can do this.  I have already mentioned how I have learnt a great deal about myself whilst I was recuperating in bed.  That time I spent unable to do much has led me to a decision I made at the weekend - to learn Reiki.  Learning Reiki is just one of the many things I have adopted in my quest to live a more natural life.
When I say live a more natural life, I am not just talking about recycling and green living.  I am beginning to attune my whole being to the natural cycles around me, and I understand that can be quite a difficult undertaking, but I want to help my body be in balance with nature.  And as long winded as I have made that sound I am finding this quite an easy thing to do.

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Pleased with myself.

I am extremely pleased with myself, in a ridiculous fashion.  I made some black salt - you know, the witchy/hoodoo type?  I just cleaned the fire out and though, "hmm, I should keep some of this."  So I did and made black salt.  It is the first witchy thing I have physically done in what feels like forever.  Now I want to do a million things all at once, which is also pleasing as my interest is well and truly piqued once more.

Baby steps.

Friday, 20 April 2012

Choices

Being confined to bed for such a long period of time has had its good and bad points.  I've discovered a whole bee side to myself and others.  I've discovered books and TV shows I would never have discovered had I not been confined.  I have come to understand how life is a series of choices, everything we do - or don't do for that matter - is because of a choice we made.


This past week I have been getting up and about and trying to put my new ways into practice.  It hasn't verb easy, but it has been quite thrilling moving forward with new ideas, plans and so on.


I have been extremely tired however, given the amount of nothing I have been doing and then suddenly trying to be mobile again.  The blog catch ups I had promised myself didn't happen, but it doesn't matter, I know I'll get to where I want to be eventually.


Sunday, 15 April 2012

Light at the end of the tunnel.

The problem with my neck is getting less, although I must stress it is still very much a problem.  With the help of physio and a wheat bag I am able to sit at the computer for short bursts now, rather than just every now and then.  Trying to catch up with the stuff I have neglected is proving to be a real challenge and I am mindful of pacing myself.  I am mindful that I have missed so much but I want to be well again - or as well as can be expected.  I am spending the day mulling over what blog challenges I should stay with and what I should let go and this includes the Pagan Blog Project.

I have not spoke to Rowan about this yet because it is something I am just thinking about at the moment.  If I could possibly keep this one on I would really like to.  I have had such a bad time of things lately and I have struggled to keep up with everything.  This is the first week where I have not actually produced a post for the PBP, although I have a half written one saved so I am hoping to get that finished and just post late.

With all of this in mind I do feel I have turned a corner and that there is light at the end of the tunnel.  The being confined to bed is getting less, albeit slowly, and I am feeling a lot more hopeful.  I have to stress that it is still early days though and sitting at a computer, or trying to pot up stuff in the garden, or even trying to be interactive in any way is still pretty difficult.  But as I said, short bursts have now been achieved and this to me is progress.

Friday, 6 April 2012

Pagan Blog Project - week 14

G is for Going with the flow.

I had planned to do a brilliant post on something, but as it is I am still struggling with my neck problem and sitting for too long at a computer is excruciating.  That was when I got to thinking how life can just catch us out and all of our best laid plans fall by the wayside.
Being witches doesn't excuse us from our mundane lives, in fact it is probably those mundane lives of ours that pay the bills and help us move forward.  When we become ill we can take as many remedies as we can, or have some friend send us reiki, or even do something else along the lines of healing; lets face it, there are no shortage of therapies about these days.   But then we get to a certain point and we hit a wall, we can go no further and we literally have to rest up.  This is very frustrating, believe me, I know, I'm there.  It is at this point when you begin to appreciate free movement, and just how much we rely on the Internet these days.

Way back when I first began struggling with my neck I vowed it would not beat me; I would still manage to get to do my blog posts and catch up with folks online and do whatever else it is I do online.  I managed for a time and felt quite smug with myself for achieving this, but then my neck problem deteriorated and I was unable to sit for more than five or ten minutes tops at my computer.  I tried using an old laptop that we have, but getting comfortable was still an issue.  There was nothing else for it, I would just have to sit it out.

I wasn't very happy about losing days on end where I got no writing done, but the pain was - is - so unbearable at times.  I resigned myself to going with the flow, just letting life happen and relinquishing control over everything. I have to admit, I was very grouchy at first, being such a control freak means I hate handing over the reigns to anyone, let alone just letting life be.  At first I felt just as tense and sore and grouchy, but then I started to see life from a different point of view.  This enforced rest has allowed me to catch up with my witchy/pagan/spiritual reading and I am discovering so much - so much more than I would if I were writing blog posts and doing other stuff online.
I have also discovered strengths I wasn't even aware of, which is really beneficial given my situation.  I have spent time meditating - something I never get round to doing as often as I would like, although I always vow I will do this regularly.
Going with the flow has opened me up to so many possibilities and has deepened my spiritual practice.  I discovered something about myself, which I believe I would never have noticed had I not been laid up one day twiddling my thumbs.  This situation has shown me a new way of dealing with stressful situations, calmly.

I have pondered about how we can get so caught up in life that we neglect to take time out for ourselves, even when we say we will.  We promise ourselves that we will do this, cast that spell, make that herb pillow/bag and so on.  Only half of what we want to do spiritually, witchily, ever gets achieved and we feel frustrated with ourselves.  Going with the flow when it comes to our craft not only opens doors that we may never have discovered, it also brings endless opportunities that we usually never have time for.  It allows us to be truly ourselves and shows us who we can be, if only we allow ourselves to believe.
Going with the flow brings us to places we might be too busy to visit - both physically and spiritually.  Going with the flow shows us the way to find those answers to those questions that we have struggled with for some time.
Going with the flow releases the stress from our lives and helps us come to terms with things we might otherwise struggle with.  It allows us to connect with our higher/inner selves and improve our lives, however we may need to.
Going with the flow isn't just about taking time out from the hectic schedules we found ourselves in, it isn't just about giving ourselves over to something unseen.  It's about making a conscious decision to let the Universe - or whatever you believe guides us - show us the way.  Going with the flow is about letting go of negative thoughts and actions and harmful practices and having faith in what we are doing.  Going with the flow is a subtle shift in our consciousness that can lead us to being in the right place at the right time.

It's all about possibilities and opening up to what is on offer, out there in the world.  So much opportunity and wisdom and potential that we might well miss out on, if we don't just go with the flow.

Let go, relax, trust in yourself and truly start living.

Monday, 2 April 2012

Long time since posting.

I seem to have fallen off the blogging bandwagon of late.  This is down to the fact my neck is so sore I cannot bear to sit for too long.  I have some stuff I want to blog about but I'm still struggling.  The enforced rest has been enlightening, to say the least, you learn lots about yourself - and others - when you are forced to rest up.

Hopefully now the physio has started I will be able to get a post cobbled together and continue.

Thursday, 22 March 2012

V is for......

........Valkyrie.

My first encounter with these mythical beings was in an episode of Charmed.  Before that I had never heard of them and had no clue as to what they were.
A Valkyrie is a celestial lady of Norse mythology.  These ladies come to the battlefields to select the best warriors and bring them back to Valhalla, the great hall of the Upper World.  They have other names attributed to them, Odins' Meyar - Odin's Maidens, Oskmeyer, Odin's Wishfillers and also Waive Maidens.
Odin was the God of War, poetry and wisdom and is one of the main Gods in Norse mythology.

The great warriors chosen by the Valkyrie were those who had died in battle.  They fought in the heavens as a form of training, after each battle their wounds would be tended to by the Valkyrie.  These warriors were therefore able to fight endlessly in preparation for the battle of Ragnarok, the final battle.  The Valkyrie were fierce warriors themselves and had the ability to regenerate too.
Some legends have a total of 36 Valkyrie, whereas others have only 13.  The 13 are:
Goll = Battle Cry
Geirolul = Spear Charger
Hrist = Shaker
Hildr = Battle
Hlokk = Battle Noise
Herfjotur  = Army Fetter
Mist = Cloud
Radgridr = Bossy
Randgridr = Shield Destroyer
Reginlefir = God's Daughter
Skeggjold = Axe Age
Sigrdrifa = Inciter To Battle
Thrudr = Power Woman

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Ostara Blessings.

Technically speaking, or should that be astrologically speaking? it was Ostara yesterday.  But I like to keep my Sabbats on fixed days because that is what works for me.  Ostara is a a time of balance.  A time to work on any area of our lives that need balance or rebalance.  A good time for spring cleaning, out with the old energy and in with the new, although I have been doing so much each week since Imbolc.


  Ostara Blessings

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

More catching up.

It would seem life is too hectic for me right now and that prevents me from daily blogging.  This doesn't mean I am not keeping up with my 366 days of witchery challenge.  Recently I have read up on the following:

Robin Goodfellow, a Brownie like creature who is said to help women with their housework.  He can shapeshift into various different creatures and he is keen on persuading travellers to follow him, with them ending up lost.

Sylph, an elemental of air.  The Sylph is made entirely out of air.  Anyone casting a spell that requires this element will call upon them to aid in the magickal workings.

Trolls - different cultures have different variations of the Troll.  Trolls hail back from Norse mythology and the name Troll means monster.  The Danish people see their Trolls as ugly creatures, with large noses, a white long beard and wearing a craftsman's apron and a red cap.  The Norwegians have them as ugly, but also hairy creatures.  They also have a female version - a beautiful redheaded female.  In Sweden and Denmark they are remarkably like the Brownie.

During the Middle ages they were seen as evil doers, wielding Black Magick.  They were reported to steal people's possessions, even women and children!  It is said that Trolls hate noise and that they can be driven out by church bells.  People can also protect themselves from the Trolls by wearing or carrying Miseltoe.
Trolls turn into stone if they are caught by light, so they only come out at night.

Unicorns can vary in size, according to where the tales about them are from.  Some people have them the size of a horse, which is how I have always viewed them, whereas others have them as the size of a deer.  Surprisingly, a lot of the info that came up relates to how Unicorns defeat the devil etc, as told in the Bible.  It surprised me a lot actually, given that the creature is a mythical being.
Another story has Alexander The Great as having a Unicorn, not a horse.
The most popular time for Unicorns was during the medieval ages, whereas nowadays they are only really popular with people of a certain belief and children.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Pagan Blog Project - F

F is for Familiar.

A familiar is a magickal helper most often associated with witches.  A familiar can be any animal, whether they be an animal spirit or an actual live animal depends entirely on the individual.  Until I got the cats that we have now I never actual had a familiar.  I had tried for a long time to meditate upon this and to work with guides and such to discover what my familiar would be, but always to no avail.
We had an old cat, a tabby called Tiggy, who died in 2006 and after that we got 3 kittens from an animal refuge.  One in particular has always been close to me and my husband - a semi-short haired cross tabby.  Tinkerbelle.  She is very fluffy and we hand reared her from 6 weeks old.  I thought she was going to be my familiar, but she's only ever really curious about what I'm up to.
The following year we had an awful incident with our black tom, he was deliberately ran over by our then neighbours.  We got another tom soon after - the tom was our son's cat and he wanted another cat pretty much straight away.
This is when we got our tom, Rocky.  It took him about a week to settle in but after that he made a beeline for my bed.  It was then that I noticed he would appear beside me whenever I was doing anything remotely witchy.  If he was outside he would come home.  If he was not in the same room as me he would just suddenly come in.  It became apparent that he is my familiar.  He sits beside me when I am doing any divination work.  He just has to be in the room with me if I am spelling.  He even does the same to my daughters whenever they are doing anything of a magickal nature.  He really dislikes men, except my husband and son, much preferring women and he cannot bear to be in the same room as any male visitor to the house.
Both he and Tinkerbelle have that psychic bond with me and my daughters too.



This is Tinkerbelle, doing what she does best - getting herself into strange places.




This is Rocky, he had been following me all over the garden just before this had been taken.




And this is Bubble, Queen of the house and Lady of the sofa.  She is very Royal and if you touch her and you're not a man she will complain loudly and spend the next hour washing herself in disgust.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Catching up.

Wow, life has done it again, got in the way of me blogging!
I have finally got my seeds planted out - it sucks when you have to rely on other folk to do stuff for you.  Having a chronic illness means I can't do stuff for myself, gardening being one of them, and I am at the mercy of friends or family - not to mention the British weather, or should that be the Cumbrian weather?  It all came together beautifully this last weekend however, and the garden is shaping up nicely.  I took a few pics - seems it was all I was good for.  I am really grateful to those who do help me and my husband out - my daughter's boyfriend and my son are in the process of painting the fences and then the garden furniture needs a lick of paint too.  Without this help I would not have the garden I love, I would have had to pay someone to flag it over or let it go to waste.  It breaks my heart that I was once able to do the garden single handed without too much pain, just that general achey feeling one gets when they have over done things a little.  When we first moved to this house in 2001 I was so excited to have a decent garden to plant in, but now, eleven years later I am unable to care for it myself.  But, we have found solutions to that in the shape of a couple of my brothers, or my husband's step-father, or friends, or most recently our son and our daughter's boyfriend.
The garden is shaping up nicely and it's all down to them, so thanks so much Tony and Paul for all of your help this weekend.

I have a few pics up on another of my blogs, if you are interested you can find them here.

I am still checking pagan and witchy themed things out for my 366 days of witchery and have rediscovered something I was once very good at.  Despite not posting on here every day I am still staying true to myself on this and enjoying myself immensely.

Life has been busy, even when I have been too sick to do too much, it trundles on regardless.

Friday, 9 March 2012

Pagan Blog Project - E week 2

Emotions may not seem like a very pagan minded topic, but they shape who we are, what we do and how we do it.  Something that I noticed when I first came to my path was that I had a tendency to be a pro active witch when I was mad about something, or was desperate to chage something, thus my emotions were shaping my magickal life and workings.

As I got older and started to really get to grips with magick I was able to stop myself only casting when I was angry or hurt, thus controlling my emotions and not allowing them to run my life for me.  I have to admit it can be very difficult to control your emotions though.  You know yourself what you are capable of and what you will and won't do when it comes to casting spells etc.  It's so easy to get annoyed by someone and not allow the feelings of needing to retaliate overwhelm you. 

The obvious tool in controlling your emotions is to count to ten before taking any action or speaking.  This few seconds can often be all that is needed to let you think beofre acting/speaking and not doing or saying something you will later regret.  Sometimes a longer period of time is needed and you may find that a few hours, or even a few days are required before doing or saying anything.  I have been so guilty of this in the past, someone has really hurt me and before I have even had the chance to think about the situation I have zapped them with something, a classic example of letting my emotions rule me.

Emotions are very much part of paganism and witchcraft, in so much as we need to have a good handle on them and not let them get the better of us.  Controlling your emotions is every bit as important as grounding or casting circles, or whatever other techniques we deem important, but it is very often the one thing we overlook.

Emotions needn't be our enemy, they can be our friend, our mood balancer, our guide to something feeling off.  If you aren't already in control with your emotions, now would be a good time to work on them.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Q is for......

......Qandisa.

Qandisa is a terrible Djinn or Demon, according to Morrocan mythology.  Her usual appearance is that of an attractive woman, though she is known to be a shape-shifter.  Apparently, she was once the Goddess Of Love but after falling from grace she became an enticing sinister woman.

She entices youn and naive men into the rivers and streams that she inhabits, and those who do follow her are never seen again.

Sacrifices and offerings are made to her at the time of the Summer Solstice in certain parts of Morocco.  By doing so these people believe they have appeased her and will be safe from her.

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

P is for.......

........Pixie.

The word Pixie makes me think of cute little fairy like creatures, with cheeky smiles and a sunny disposition.  Apparently not though.  It is said that the Pixie is a redheaded fairy like creature from Devon and Cornwall area and that they have upturned pig-like noses, pointy ears and wear green clothes.
It is believed that they are the souls of the dead, who, as children were not baptised.  This means that they could not enter heaven, but as they had done nothing wrong they weren't admitted to hell either.

It is said that they fought a war with another race of fairies, they were victorius and this won them their own territory in Buckland St. Mary, in Somerset, a place they protect fiercely.
The Pixies are said to steal horses which they ride around in circles.  This action creates gallitraps, a magickal circle.  Anyone who is caught in the gallitrap will come under the power of the Pixies and if a criminal is caught in a gallitrap then they will be hung.
The Pixies are also said to lead travellers astray by bringing them bad luck.

Monday, 5 March 2012

366 Days of Witchery - an update.

Although I am not posting everyday, at the moment, I am still practicing my 366 Days Of Witchery.  I do something or look at something everyday to remind myself just how wonderful the craft is.
I am struggling with a very bad fibro flare, as well as the problem with my neck - I have Cervical Spondylosis - and I am awaiting my physio appointment - which is March 27th.  I am quiet everywhere because of this, the reason being I am barely spending any time online due to the ill health.

Happy Blogging to all and Bright Blessings.

Friday, 2 March 2012

Pagan Blog Project week 9 - E.

E is for Eclectic, of course!

I love being an Eclectic witch.  It is who I am.  The word, eclectic means choosing something or doing something from/with a variety of different sources.  Being an eclectic witch can often be confused with having no real focus, but that really isn't the case.  I have found that almost all of the eclectic witches I know have studied many different paths and forms of magick and witchcraft, making them well equipped to wander down the path they have chosen.

Eclectic witchcraft gives me so much freedom -if I want to swap things about for a spell I can, I am not tied to one tradition.  It literally means I can do things my way, work with the best bits of any tradition I have researched/studied/worked with before.  Basically that is how I came to eclecticity; I liked many different aspects of different traditions but couldn't align myself completely with any particular one.  I felt frustrated and held back, but then I let go and it all made sense to me.

To some, eclecticity can seem really chaotic, there are no set rules other than those you impose on yourself.  You may celebrate one esbat or sabbat using a ritual from one particuar tradition, but then the next time round you may choose something entirely different.  Or you may choose something with aspects of all traditions, and that for me is the beauty of being an eclectic witch, you are living your own path, unique to you.  Nobody gets to tell you that it is wrong because nobody else is walking that very same path with you, your rules, your choices, your decisions, your own unique type of witchcraft tailored for you by you.

It's a pretty awesome path to walk, your own, I highly recommend it.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

March is here.

Despite us having a mild autumn and winter it certainly feels like forever since spring and summer were here.  I had actually forgotten how much I love March through to October.  In recent times I have felt more comfortable with winter, I have found solace in that season.
But I got up this morning, the sun was shining, March had arrived and all of a sudden I felt like everything was going to be OK.  It's at times like this that I realise what my family went through from December 2010 to April 2011, and then beyond with the grieving stages.  When you go through that you feel like you will never feel OK again, even when you can fucntion in your everyday life you still fell that nothing will ever be fine again.

But as March rolled round I have found that it has been fifteen months since my brother died, and the first year anniversary of my Dad's death is the end of April.  Time passed and I survived.  I still have trouble with sleep - although some of that is down to the fibro - but I am not waking up in sheer panic at some ridiculous hour panicking about people dying, worrying about who is going to be next.  It is during those dark times that everything feels impossible, your faith in anything gets shaken and you begin to wonder just what the point is.  Sometimes it isn't until you are through those bleak times that you realise you were actually there at all.

And then March arrives and I feel that the dark days are behind me, truly.  Even though I thought I had gotten past this stage I realise that it was still lingering on, catching me out at 3am and mocking me when I thought I was doing fine.  I know now that I am still getting through it because I am still as angry as hell and still don't want to talk about it outside of my family, and I only discuss it with them when I absolutely have to.  But having spring around the corner, if not here already, has given me hope.  Spring is full of opportunities and wonderfulness.  Spring brings hope and new life and holds so much promise.

March is here and I am eager to plant my seeds - no, I still haven't got it done - and see the beauty that will be my garden once life returns to it.  And I have magpies building a nest behind my house, I guess they really do love me these blessed magpies.  They have been coming closer and closer and have been right up to the house.  They ignore the cats and the cats ignore them and they hop around my garden like they own the place, chattering and calling out and arguing and fighting with the crows and gulls that frequent the back gardens and wasteland behind us.  I am looking forward to the coming months of new life, chicks and other babies, plants, seedlings and once again attempting to grow herbs from seed.

The joys of spring are plentiful.

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Leap Year's Day.

Coming round only once every four years, Leap Year Day - otherwise known as February 29th - is something of a special day.  We hear so much about there being nothing spectacular about this day, when the present day calendar was being created nobody paid any heed etc, is the general gist of what people like to say.  But how can we, as witches, not mark this day?

According to Roman traditions, this day is good for working magicks for improbable things.  In my mind that makes it a very special day.  Reserving this day for once in a lifetime type magick - and by this I mean working for things you probably would never normally do - we can work magick for anything from a dream lover, to a dream house.  The only thing that limits us is ourselves.

Given that the day is traditionally used for women to propose to their sweetheart, it would be a good day for love spells.  Or maybe you want to patch things up with soemone - whether that be romantically, or as a friend, - but have not had the courage to do so.  The energy from this special day lends itself to improbable situations, making it the perfect tiem to just go for it.

Whatever you choose to work for, today is definitely a special day for making your dreams a reality.

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

O is for.....

.......Ogre.

An Ogre is the generic name for hideous creatures, usually giant-sized, who scare humnas.  The female version is an Ogress.  Ogres to me are creatures like Shrek and Fiona, from the movie Shrek.  That is what I think of when I envison an Ogre.
Obviously their appearance gives them a bad reputation, as does the fact that are supposed to feed on humans.

N is for....

.......Nymphs.

Nymphs are born of Gaia, also known as mother nature in the Greek pantheon.  They are associaited with nature and are often found protecting natural habitats.  Nymphs can also be seen around Pan, Hermes, Apollo, Atremis, Dionysius, as well as creatures such as Satyrs.
Nymphs are described as beautiful and sexually attractive.  They love to dance and sing and they are, ahem, quite armourous too. 

They live for a long time, it is said they do not die from old age, but usually die in other ways.  That they can live for so long often gives the impression they are immortal, though they are not.  They often bear a child to a God - whichever one they have mated with - and these children are immortal.

Sunday, 26 February 2012

M is for.....

......Mermaids.
It is said that a mermaid is a very attractive woman on the top half, and her lower half is that of a fish.  One particular story that I read has a mermaid being able to change into a "full" human in order to attend a market so that she could buy things.
The typical image we have for a mermaid is of a beautiful half woman-half fish sitting on a rock, out at sea, combing her hair and or singing.  Apparently the mermaids have no souls and lure fishermen to their death, by singing beautiful, haunting songs.  When the sailor gets close enough the mermaid grabs him and drowns him.  There are also tales that have the mermaids keeping the souls of the fishermen in cages, deep under the sea.
Typically the mermaids are the same size as a typical woman, but some tales have them up to 2000 feet in length.

L is for....

.... Loch Ness monster.

Probably the most famous of all mythical creatures.  The theories surrounding this even have theories surrounding them!  Whatever your views are on mythical creatures I think you have to admit this one is the most plausible,  There are far too many sigthings for this not to real.  And whilst this isn't really witchy it does show us that we don't know all of the answers, or have the proof about everything, even though we think me might do.

Friday, 24 February 2012

Pagan Blog Project - second D post.

For my second post on the letter D I want to elaborate on my dream theory.

After my post last week I got to thinking about how I had barely scratched the surface of the subject of dreams. You could also be forgiven for thinking that I was dismissing all dream experts and claiming they do not understand the dreamer.  This is not the case.

The subject of dream interpretation is as deeply misunderstood as the subject of Astrology.  Both are very often the butt of jokes; people read their horoscopes but usually don't take them seriously.  The same can be said about some people's attitudes to dreams.  We have them, they are odd, but they are just a bit of fun and don't mean anything.

I disagree with that attitude because I happen to believe that when we dream our subconscious self is trying to relay some sort of message to us.  Often when we are awake we are so busy that we barely take any notice of our inner voice and the messages it tries to get over to us.  When we dream we are receiving the inner messages that we need to deal with stuff that is going on, whether it be something huge, or something mundane.  Our inner selves know the answers to what troubles us and conjures up images and scenarios that will make us take notice; if we dreamt of nothing spectacular we would pay no heed to those inner messages and the solutions would go unheeded, hence the spectacular images and scenes we conjure up in our sleeping minds.

When dream interpretation books are written they cover a few basic symbols - usually those with universal meaning - and then the author adds their opinion on to it.  For instance, if someone dreams of a chimney it generally represents some form of release.  But if you search online and in different books the meaning can be anything from general release to escape, sexual release, release of tension and so on.  This can cause the dreamer confusion and is partly responsible for why the subject of dream interpretation can be the butt of jokes.
If you write your own dreams down and then pick out the meaningful - meaningful to you - symbols, then spend some time pondering on what those symbols represent to yourself, you are half way to interpreting the dream.

Recently I dreamt of a chimney.  My mother was in the room with me and there was also a nurse.  The nurse reached into the chimney and closed a little door and then turned to me and said something.  What she said was personal and the meaning of the dream is very personal.  If I had looked this dream up online or in a book I would not have got the same interpretation.  Obviously because it was my dream I was able to attach the significance to it, I was able to attach a situation to the dream and make it fit.  That it is how the cynics believe we come up with answers to dreams, and maybe in the case of my own dream they may have a point.    I have spent many years researching my dreams and their meanings and deciphering the hidden messages in the dreams of friends and family.  I always make it clear that the symbols in dreams mean different things to different people and that my interpretation is just my point of view, given the images presented to me.  I explain how I do the interpretation and encourage the person to have a go themselves, and usually the interpretations are similar.

The only complaint I have ever had using this method came from a woman I was friends with a few years back.  She was anxious over her dream meaning and asked me to interpret it.  I did and she didn't like what I told her.  The gist of it was that the symbols she was dreaming about - repeatedly, by the way, - were predicting she was going to find herself in a highly embarrassing situation resulting from her loss of self control.  She dismissed my interpretation as rubbish and chose to accept what another person had said.  I shrugged it off - you can't please everyone - and forgot all about it.  About a fortnight later I heard about this very same woman having a melt down in a shopping centre after she had endured a highly stressful shopping trip with her child.  She had shouted at her kid, screamed in frustration and then slumped to the ground and wept uncontrollably.  By all accounts she felt really foolish and was really embarrassed at what had happened to her.
Her dream had warned her this was going to happen, she chose to ignore the message, but it still happened.  She avoided me for quite some time after that, which was silly really, but her choice.  The lesson here is that we may not like the message we are receiving but that doesn't mean it won't be the right one.  That is also why I always encourage folks to interpret dreams for themselves, that way they will maybe pay more heed to what their inner self is trying to tell them and avoid situations like that very public melt down.

Learning the basics and adding your own personal meanings to symbols can give a person a real in depth dream interpretation.  I have done exactly this and have found that this method gives a more accurate reading than just sitting going through a book, or online web page would.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Panic.

I've had a panic attack today.  I haven't had one of those in a long time.  There's some stuff going on right now, nothing overly major, just stuff kind of stuff and I had to speak out about something.  My point was well received and everything went well......but afterwards I was just so done in.  I just felt like my whole being imploded on itself and I started to feel as if a great weight had landed on my chest.
I was worried that all of my work would be undone, as if my little chat had undone all of my good work and I was in full blown panic mode.  I have spent the rest of the day nursing my very emotional well being and having not being around the social media circuit has helped me enormously.  I think sometimes we get too caught up in what is happening round the forums, social media sites, on the chat etc, we totally lose sight of our real selves and we forget what we can do.

Sometimes the real magick in our lives is not in the spells and rituals that we do, but in the simple pleasures we find in our everyday lives.  Like the simple pleasure I found today in seeing a pheasant rummaging about on the railway line behind my house.  Nothing spectacular, nothing amazing, not even magickal, just an ordinary occurrence that helped me shift my focus.