Friday, February 26, 2010

Making Blessed Water With The Kids

Now on our third day of non-stop snow I was starting to feel a little bit depressed being cooped up in the house. The roads are covered so the only people going anywhere have snow mobiles or some seriously heavy duty plow trucks.

This morning I looked out the window and saw the glistening snow in a whole new light. It was so beautiful and gave me the opportunity to spend some quality time with my children who haven't been to school in days.

I recalled a post from Sitara Haye on making blessed water from snow and decided to call an unscheduled witch class for the kids. We made blessed water to protect us from bad dreams. This is how we did it.

First we washed our hands with salt and water to cleanse us of negative energy and then we washed our glass bowl and a jar the same way.

I tried to open a window to scoop the snow up but the snow was to high so I opened the door and drew a pentagram in the snow and I scooped up the top layer and brought the bowl back to the children.

Each of them thanked the goddess for the magical gift of snow and then pressed one star anise and one white sage leaf into the snow while asking for protection from bad dreams.

We set the snow in my son's bedroom near a window to melt. That is the stage we are in right now.

Once it is melted I will strain it into our jar and sprinkle it around their beds.

That was simple and the kids got involved. I love it.

Blessed Be

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Natural Foods to Feel More Connected

I have been posting alot lately about nautral foods and cleaning products and even more, so I am sure a few people are wondering why, all of the sudden to I need to do everything natural. Well, I will tell you how it started.

Some of you may remember a post I did a while back called The Sun Does Not Rise Over Hawley PA. That was when I realized how disconected I had become. There was a time when I got up early with my daughter to watch the sunrise every morning. We didn't need an alarm clock or a compas. It was just happened naturaly. During those times I felt so connected to the earth, and my family, the creatures that shared my plot of land with me, and the higher powers that ruled it all. Since moving into town, as small as it is, our lives have become rushed, full of convienience items, take out and absolutly know gardening or sunrises.

It happened so slowly that I didn't even realize until I was completly gone. The first thing I did when I realized was go to my mothers house and sit on the cold frozen ground and meditate until I could no longer feel my butt. Now you would think that a person that had no feeling in there butt would be unhappy. Not me, I have not felt that good in months. That is when I promised myself that I would no longer let modern convienences come come between me and the world that I love.

I don't think that all modern conviences are bad. I watch the news on tv and occasionaly a prime time drama if I am bored, and I love the internet. It is an amzing way to learn things that you would otherwise never know, but I feel that the things that interact with me most intimatly, like the food that I ingest, and the air that I breath, should be as chemical and technolgy free as I can make them.

So I am balancing, my time, and budget, and making my life as natural as I can.

Blessed Be

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Finaly A Truely Pagan Giveaway

I didn't think that I would ever find one, but thanks to a great blog... Go out beneath the Naked Sky, I have found one to share with you. When you first click on the link you may get an adult content warning. I have never seen anything I find offensive on the blog, so I wouldn't worry to much about that (but then again what I find offensive is very different than what others/Christians find offensive, but that's for another post).

Okay back to the good stuff. The prizes. I copied this directly from her blog so I wouldn't get anything wrong.

"I'm giving away Crone Stones, which are beautiful, woman-centered porcelain
runes, a mini-octopus, twin to the one on my Aphrodite altar, and Magic When You
Need It by Judika Illes."

Now all that there is left to do is enter. Click here for the entry post.

Todays Life Lessons Are brought to You By The Letter F

F is for future, hopefully a good one but sometimes scary because it is so unknown. So F is also for Fear or perhaps Fearlessness depending on who you are and where you are on your journey. But always remember that F is for Freedom as well. You always have a choice. You choose where the journey takes you. Which paths you will follow. F is for Family. So sometimes you may have to consider others in those choices.

F is for following, because sometimes being a follower is not such a bad thing. When you have the right leader you can learn a lot. F is for friendship because we are all social creatures and we need someone to connect with, someone to stand witness to our lives if just to prove that we actually existed. F is forgiveness because sometimes our friends don't quite meet the standards that we try to hold them to.

And of course F is for final. The end is always sad, but at least it gives us an opportunity for new beginnings.

For More F Posts visit ABC Wednesday

By the way I entered a few more giveaways today. I will try to make time to share them with you because I think that the prizes will be interesting to my followers (all 6 of you)

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Natural Skin Care

A while back I blogged about the nasty ingredients I found in my Face care products and promised that I would share with you when I found something better. Well today I found myself with a bit of spare time and started entering giveaway's, and look what I found. H2o Naturals makes organic skin care products using only natural ingredients.

I browsed a few items on the website and was pleasantly surprised with what I found. The ingredients are listed on the site, and are for the most part easy to understand. Anyone with a basic understanding of herbs will recognize them,

The only things that I didn't like were a few ingredients at the end that were very vague, but they were at the end of the list so it is not a main ingredient. Another issue that I had was that I could not find anything on their site that said they were "certified organic". However it is illegal to represent a product as organic without certification. I am also not sure if the packaging made of recycled materials or if the products were tested on animals.

It is not a perfect solution, but it is a better option than propane and butane filled products.

If you would like to buy some you can find it here or head over to today's diva to win some for free.

Clean Your Water/Win A Water Purifier from Food Renegade

I have mentioned a few things that bother me about living in town such as the lack of out door space and the fact that the sunrise is blocked by buildings, but one thing that I haven't griped to you about yet is the city water. It smells of chlorine, especially after it rain, so I don't want to even think of all of the other things that are in there.

I have considered buying bottled water, but my earth conscious conscience won't allow it, and I simply can not afford a water purifier. Luckily I found a giveaway for an Aqua Dome Water Purifier over at Food Renegade.

Feel free to enter your self, and if you win instead of me remember, you owe me a glass of water!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Raw Milk

I have finaly found a semi-local sourse for Raw Milk. It travels about 2 hours to get to the local whole foods store that I bought it from. I am suprised I couldn't find anything closer because there are so many farms about 20 minutes away.

We only bought one gallon to try it, and it was gone in 24 hours. The kids loved it the most. They call it cow milk, and they ask for it so much that I have to tell them no sometimes. If you are a parent you know how good it feels to have your kids asking for milk instead of soda or other sugary drinks!

It is only available on Thursday's and it is a bit expensive so we will supliment with regular pasturized whole milk. I think we will do about 50% raw and 50% pasturized whole milk.

Our next step in our more natural diet is going to be soaking oats to make our own oatmeal and using oat flour to make bisquits with dinner. I will let you know how it is going.

Cleaning Energy

I have been hit by that cleaning energy that I typically feel between Imbolc and Ostra. Of course for me this is a big deal because I don't get much cleaning energy the rest of the year. Typically cleaning is a chore for me that I find the quickest way possible to rush through.

I am starting in the kitchen this year because of my goal to eat more natural foods. Yesterday was spent decluttering the main hot spots and mopping the floor and scrubbing apliances. I even cleaned the oven. Yuck! I did break down and use a chemical cleaner on the oven. It was fume free but full of unhealthy stuff so I will have to look for something else before next time.

Today I am going to clean out the refrigerator and cabinets and get rid of all of the processed foods. Okay, so maybe not get rid of them since I can't bring myself to throw out perfectly good food, but I am going to try to get it down to one cabinet to use when we can't afford the more natural foods.

Once I am done with the kitchen I plan to move on to the bathroom which should take less than a day to really deep clean. The biggest part is going to be cleaning out under the sink and figuring out what I can get rid of.

Hopefully by the time that is done, I will still have enough energy left to get to my room. My closet is literally overflowing with clothes we don't wear. Okay, It's time for me to get to work.

Blessed Be.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

I Wish I Was a Punk Rocker By Sandi Thom

I had a lot of fun posting about the last song so I thought that I would do it again. I have absolutely no musical talent of any kind but it is still a huge part of my life. Lessons often come from unexpected places, and it was very unexpected when an 18 year old boy taught me that you can relate to almost any song even if it deals with something that you have never experienced before, because it is not the experience it's self that matters. It is the emotion that it invokes.

The song that I am looking at today is I wish I was a punk rocker. The video above is not the actual video that goes with the song, but it is still a good one.

The lyrics that grab my attention are "I was born to late in a world that doesn't care." I feel that way kind of often. When my kids ask to bring Mountain Dew for lunch like their friends, or I see someone taking a joy ride in a hummer, or I think about all of my brother-in-laws (3 int total) either overseas fighting a war over oil or on their way there) it doesn't make me angry like it does to a lot of people who share my beliefs, but it does make me sad.

There was a time when you could not put a dollar value on human life, and humanity mattered more than money and power, at least I hope their was.

But change isn't all bad. Women have made some huge advances in gaining equal rights, as well as many minorities. We haven't reached our goals of complete equality just yet, but you have to admit we are on our way. Hopefully soon we will be able to say that all people are treated equal, regardless of Race, Religion, Gender, or Sexual Orientation.

Blessed Be!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Raise Your Hand If Smear Propane on Your Face

I have been attempting a healthier life style, that includes eating more natural foods and using less chemicals. I am also trying to be a better friend to the earth and all of those I share it with (people and animals). We are all in the same boat in the vast sea that is the universe. Okay that is as philosophical as I get for today.

Anyways I got a package in the mail today from a contest I had one months ago and had forgotten all about. It was a foaming face mask from a brand I won't mention. After all it was free, so I don't to bad mouth them. I will say that it is not a discount store brand so it would be quite costly if you were to buy it.

Just out of habit because I am so used to checking food labels, the first thing I did was read the ingredients. The second ingredient listed was propane followed by butane! OMG I couldn't believe it! This prompted me to check the rest of my beauty products and more than have of them got throne out. I will be on the prowl for some more natural (and less disturbing) products. I will be sure to share with you as I find them. Feel free to let me know of any you know of and tips on what to look for.

Blessed Be

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

E is for Earpiece

Ok, so this was another gift I got for Valentines Day. It is a blue tooth earpiece that I have a very fickle love/hate relationship with. On one hand it is extremely convenient and makes life a heck of a lot easier. When I was driving back and forth to a hospital in Scranton (this place is considered a city to all of us who live out in Hawley, Pa. I was able to get directions from my husband, without having to look away from the road. It is like talking to a person that is right there next to you.

The problem is that know one else knows that. I realized when I was walking into the hospital and still talking to my husband, that everyone was staring at me. The same way I stare at others, wondering if they are talking to themselves.

This is a cheaper blue tooth so it takes a minute to disconnect and reconnect. If I don't do it before I get out of the car, I will forget. And then when the phone rings there is no time, so I have to use the earpiece.

This is a pit of a pain, but because it makes life so much easier I will probably still use it.

For more E Posts visit ABC Wednesday
Blessed Be

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

More about Death...and Life

I realize that many of my recent posts can be seen as slightly depressing. That isn't how they were intended to be at all. I do not see death as something sad or scary, at least not my own. It is an inevitable event, and I know with every fiber of my being that it is not the end.

What I would rather focus on is how I am going to feel about my life when my time does come. Is anyones life better because I was in it. Have I found joy and spread joy. Is the world better off or worse off because of me. Have I accomplished all that I was meant to accomplish.

These are the big questions that we all must asks ourselves eventually. Might as well be now, when we can still do something about it. It is so easy getting caught up in the immediate future. We can tell ourselves that we can't meditate to find our life's meaning right now because the dishes need to be done. But in the end when we look back do you think you are more likely to remember a sink full of dishes or the moment you discovered your purpose here on earth.

Blessed Be

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Temporary Home By Carrie Underwood

I spent Valentines Day morning curled up in bed with my husband watching CMT. I am not as big a fan of country music as I used to be but I still get into it occasionally. My husband loves it. He eats sleeps and breaths country (and Nascar). But I am getting off topic.

This morning I heard Temporary Home by Carrie Underwood. It is a great song about a foster child, a single mother, and a man that is dying. The song really got to me.

I have done quite a bit of moving in my life, and passed through temporary homes. In fact, I am in one right now. I know that cramming my family of 5 into a small 2 bedroom apartment with no outdoor space is not permanent. It is not where we belong. I have lived in places where I felt I belonged, but could not afford to stay there. But I know that my goal is to get back there. I have lived in rentals all of my life and I try to think about how I would want a tenant to treat a home if I were the owner and had so much invested in it.

Then I think about the end of the song. When the man is dying and he speaks of the earth as our temporary home. We are just visitors here. This is the place where we have to stay right now, but it is not our permanent home. We are guests in this place. So often we forget that and treat the earth as if it belongs to us. As if it is our right to take and use as much of the earths resources as we can. We neglect it and mistreat it as if it were something that belonged to us. But how can it belong to us if we are only here for such a short stay.

Imagine if you had spent millenniums building and perfecting a home. Adding touches and adjustments here and there to make the home more perfect, and then tenants moved in and pulled up the floor boards, punched holes in the walls, and painted graffiti on the walls.

Just something to think about. Blessed Be

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Death and Dyeing - Facing My Own Mortality

They're are only two events that every living creature in this world will experience. Birth and Death. Chances are if you are reading this you already have the birth part out of the way. At some point we will all experience the other part. The dying. This is the single scariest thing that any of us will ever have to face.It makes me wonder about afterlife. I wonder if we spend our after life preparing for birth, and is that just as scary.

I can't help but wonder how and when mines gonna go down. Would I want to know ahead of time.

It makes sense to me that it would be best to be prepared for such a huge event. One that you know is coming. Leave the world with all of our affairs in order.

But then I wonder if I would miss out on things. Things that I am supposed to experience.

What are your thoughts on death and Dying.

Taking A Break From My 366 Days

I have been working threw a book called Wicca: A Year and A Day - 366 Days of
Spiritual Practice in the Craft of the Wise. So far it has been a very enlightening experience. I am a better mediator, I notice the sun and the moon and the changes of the season more, and I feel very connected to the earth. The last section I completed was a four days about the maiden goddess. I felt a deep connection and even believe that the goddess that I eventually dedicate myself to will probably be a maiden goddess.

My step-father went into the hospital right after that section was completed, and things got a little bit crazy with me running back and forth to the hospital (about a 1 hour drive each way). The house is a mess, the children are a bit out-of-control after being spoiled by a baby-sitter for so many days. And on top of that we are preparing for my husbands departure.

I tried to begin the section on the mother goddess, but my heart just wasn't in it. I couldn't concentrate or focus. I worked through the first two days of the section and realized that I just wasn't feeling the same connection that I felt with with the maiden. Now I realize this can be caused by more than one reason, but I really want to put my all into every one of my 366 days.

So yesterday I decided to take some time off. The first day off was yesterday, which I spent just relaxing and reading a trashy romance novel (I think that I may still be living under the influence of the maiden goddess), however today I plan to get busy. I am going to get the house back into order and recenter myself, so that as soon as things settle down a little I begin again.

I was really torn about this decision to take a break because I know that spirituality isn't meant to be for times when things are calm and forgot when things get crazy. But I can still be spiritual. I have just put learning on hold until I am better able to absorb.

Now it's time for me to get to work. Blessed Be.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Quit Smoking Spell

I am planning to quit smoking this month on the full moon. I know that there is a lot of controversy about quit smoking spells, so here is my take on it.

Will power is an essential ingredient in any spell that you perform. If the will power is not there it will not work. I have the will power. I hate smoking, what it does to my health, my home, my budget and my children. This spell is only to reinforce what I know I can do myself. Because this is my first spell I have spent a lot of time researching and putting together what I think will work. This is what I came up with.

I will start by making a tea out of St. John's Wart for Success and Power

I will use three candles anointed with three different oils:

Red for drive and achievement anointed with yarrow oil to banish anger and hostility that come with quitting.

Black for stopping, anointed with fennel oil for change.

Brown for Endurance anointed with gardenia oil for emotional strength.

I will use Breath Control to raise power because a mini version of the process can be used later on to help with the will power to get through cravings.

After completing 40 breath cycles I will direct the energy into a Quartz Crystal and the tea.

I will then drink the tea.
I am not sure yet if I will carry the quartz in a pouch or have it made into a necklace.

I welcome any tips or tweaks from someone more experienced. Thanks

Blessed Be.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

ABC Wednesday...D is for Doctors

I am actually writing this on Monday night because tomorrow will be to busy for writing. I need to leave my house at 7:00 am and be at the hospital by 8:00. My father will be having a triple bypass surgery. So today D is for Doctors.

He has had quite a few doctors this week. First was the ER doctor at our local hospital who sent by ambulance to Mercy hospital about an hour away to have a Cardiac Catheterization (I am sure I spelled this wrong). Then was the doctor who performed the procedure and told us that three of his arteries were blocked. That doctor was followed by a parade of others who asked him the same questions over and over (don't these doctors communicate) and finally was the Surgeon.

I am not so sure I liked this Surgeon. I can't tell you one particular thing that is wrong with him. I am sure he is a great doctor (lets hope) but he seemed way to jolly to be dealing with a family in such a stressful time, and although I am sure it wasn't intentional he talked down at my parents as if they were children. And then there was the fact the he referred to herbal medicine as "any of that other crap they try to sell you". Lets just hope that he is better with the scalpel than he is with people.

By the time I get around to posting this it will be Tuesday night and my stepfather will be recovering. I will update you later.

Update : Wed. My father is awake and doing well. He will be moved out of ICU and onto the cardiovascular floor sometime today.

For more D posts visit ABC Wednesday
Blessed Be

Monday, February 8, 2010

More on Guided Meditation

I participated in a group guided meditation this week that brought me deeper into the meditation than any other method I had tried thus far. It was so helpful in showing me ways to deepen my meditation at home. I would like to share a few of my insights with you now.

Make relaxing your body and clearing your head a bigger part of the meditation.

I have always spent about 5 minutes or less total on getting relaxed and clearing my head and then focused on the purpose of the meditation. This time we spent about 10 minutes on relaxing our body's followed by 5 minutes of clearing our head before we even began the focus of the meditation. As soon as we started visualizing I was pulled deeper into the trance and my visualizations were clearer than they had ever been before.

Rethink your meditation position.
When I do a sitting meditation I usually do it cross legged on the floor. This time I was sitting back in a comfortable overstuffed chair with my hands in my lap and my feet flat on the ground. During the meditation I did not feel the floor underneath me or even the chair. I was able to feel the water and the sand that were described by the guide.

Set the atmosphere.

Having the proper setting really does make a difference. Can you smell the garbage in the kitchen. Take it out before you begin so that it does not interfere. Place some fresh flowers in front of you or burn your favorite incense. Is the lighting just right. What is the last thing you see before you close your eyes. Are you worried that you will be interrupted because the area is not private enough. All of these things will effect the quality of your meditation.

Remember these things to help give you a deeper more satisfying experience.

Blessed Be.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

ABC Wednesday Computers, Chalices and Cauldrens Oh my...

I used to have a blog about entering giveaways, but I stopped that because life got to busy to spend 5 or more hours a day entering these giveaways. I don't miss the giveaways as much as I do the blogging. Which is why I started this blog. One thing I remember having a lot of fun with was memes. I have been watching as Bringing Up Salamanders played along with the ABC meme and finally decided to take the big plunge myself today. After today I will start posting on Tuesday's. Today's later is C.

I was racking my brain for something that tells a story about me and begins with the letter C. It took a little while for me to realize that the answers have been coming at me for weeks. You see, my husband is going to be leaving us for a little while very soon. I think he has been feeling a little guilty about this because for the past two weeks he has been giving me a gift almost everyday. He plans on keeping this up until Valentines Day. Some of the gifts are very large, and more money than I feel we can afford to spend and others are very small but show that he truly knows me.

So here are the gifts that begin with C.

The first is my Cauldron and Chalice. They were two separate gifts for two separate days. The cauldron I use for burning charcoal incense (including Frankincense that was a gift from another day). I don't use the Chalice to often because I do rituals as part of a group, it's not a coven, just a group of other pagans from various traditions, but it does look great on my alter.

The next C gifts are the cage and Cockatiel. I got both of these gifts on the same day. There was a time in my life when I had close to 17 cockatiels, but when I moved out of my parents house they stayed and as my parents health faded and they were no longer able to take care of the birds, the cockatiels were adopted by various families. Three of them broke my heart when they left, but my landlord at the time would not accept any pets regardless of how small. Aurthur and Gwen, were the first birds that were actually mine, unlike the birds that we had had up until then which were my mothers. Neko was a baby from a pair of my mothers birds who got very sick around two weeks old and the parents stopped feeding him. After a lot of begging my mother allowed me to hand feed him and care for him rather than letting nature take it's course. That bird was with my night and day until I moved out. My husband new how much I missed my birds and that I still take out pictures from time to time. So he surprised me with a new baby cockatiel last week. I named him Valentine because he was part of this month long Valentines Day thing and he is sitting on my shoulder as I type.

The next C gift was my computer, I purple mini lap top to be exact. We already had a laptop that had been converted into a desktop when the screen broke. I told my husband that I missed being able to use the Internet at the laundry mat and other places that offered wi fi, so one of my gifts was a purple acer. I use it every day even when I am at home. This was kind of a gift for him to because it frees up the desk top for him to use now.

The final C gift that I have received so far is my car. It is a Silver 2000 Dodge Neon, in honer of the Red 1995 Dodge Neon that I lost this past summer when I lent it to a teenager who had just gotten his licence. I know, I know... not smart but I learned my lesson when I had to drive my husbands beet up old pick up truck around for half the year. I promise to take better care of this one.

It has been a very great couple of weeks, although I am worried that the decorative sword I got him for Valentines Day is going to look very cheap in comparison. I am so grateful to have a husband that cares for me so much, but it is still his fault that he has to leave and I wish he would have sacrificed other things so that he could stay with us rather than making up for it by spoiling me with gifts that we can't afford.

That is all of the C gifts that I have received.
For more C Posts visit ABC Tuesday

Blessed Be.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Witch School

I figured it was about time that my wee witches started to learn more about our religion. They already know the basics, but they want to start attending some rituals with me so I think it is time for them to learn a little bit more.

I started witch school today with Matthew age 7, Ashley age 6, and Sarah Belle age 3. Sarah won't be attending rituals any time soon and probably won't understand much of what I am telling her, but just being exposed to it should help her later on.

We talked about Imbolic and why we celebrate, and the goddess Brigid and what her qualities are. Then I started to teach them how to call the quarters. This will take them some time to memorize, but they have all the time they need. After that we read a chapter in a pagan children's book, and finished up with a short guided meditation.

All of the children enjoyed it, and I'm not surprised. They all love school and have been so eager to learn more about Wicca since I started practicing openly. I think that tomorrow's lesson will be about the sun and the moon. They should enjoy that.

Blessed Be

Monday, February 1, 2010

Can You Put A Price on Civil Rights...Because the Government Can

Reading and watching the news for the past couple of days has really put me in a bad mood. It has become blatantly clear that no longer are all people created equal and deserving of the same civil rights... unless of course they can afford them.

First their was the Supreme Court ruling giving corporations the same rights as people, allowing them to donate as much money to a campaign as they choose. As if they didn't have enough control of politics already. Now I am watching the news to find out that a cooperation is running for an elected government position and telling everyone that they are willing to fight for their rights if need be. I am wondering if the retards in charge of our country realize that they have given cooperation's more rights than many Americans because cooperation's have the legal right to merge with one and other. All it takes is a few dollars to buy someone else's rights these days.

Then I read about a case in California that is trying to say that Christians and about four other religions are first tier religions and everyone else including Pagans, Hindu's, and Jehovah's Witnesses are second tier religions and are not entitled to the same constitutional rights as first tier religions.

What the Hell is the matter with this country. Did we not learn anything from the past, when we took the rights of Native Americans and African Americans. When will we learn that ALL Americans deserve the same civil rights. If we allow this to keep happening it will only get worse. If you think it has nothing to do with you, your wrong. Before you know it they will say that people who make under a certain amount of money do not get the same rights as millionaires.

We need to stand up, not only for our own rights, but the rights of others as well. Because the longer it goes on the greater the chance that it will happen to you.

Blessed Be