Nightscapes

A few nights ago, I was invited to attend a gathering by my friend’s dead mother.  For weeks, she has been meeting this hoodoo (?) priestess woman in the middle of the night at a dance/yoga studio.  Two a.m. on a Wednesday – the floor of the studio was aged wood.  It was a hot second floor space in the city; the windows were uncovered, but the night outside was completely black.  I stood with a couple of other newcomers just at the threshold, observing.  The woman opened the ritual by slicing furiously at the floor with both hands clutching an invisible blade, then sprinkling a line of dirt, spitting on it, rubbing it in.  All efforts to open the veil just enough, then seal it before too much came in or went out.  Almost outside of my own volition, I found myself first clapping, then participating in the chant that ended in gradually more frenzied dancing.

Afterwards, leaning against the inner wall of the studio room where a small shelf was inset and dimly lit, the woman spoke quietly to me in a sidelong way, revealing short, powerful details without hesitation or ceremony, then told me my name with a sly smile.

In dazzling daylight, I walked with the small group of key members to their designated space in the woods – a white house on an airy hillside.  I observed but stayed clear of the posturing of two women who were vying for position, showing off their more menacing forms in air and water.  I brought thistles and milk, and a human-like dog greeted me in the yard.  I was told to leave roses behind, before we started up the hill to the initiation place.

Other recent dreams marrying magical tools to each other, meeting ghosts in my kitchen and elsewhere, iron charms, wolves, and a frog emerging from our blueberry bush with an exceptionally communicative gaze.

My cold spell is melting, and I feel again the welcome sting behind my eyes.

Archival Ephemera

Hi fellow wanderers,

I suppose it is fitting that I titled this entry “Ephemera,” because my entire post vanished when I attempted to save it before publishing.  That makes two full posts lost to the ether since September.

I commented on Women Who Run with the Wolves, the “sight” in our skin and pelts in shamanic practices, my favorite personal fairy tale (Allerleirauh), prey stalking behavior in my shopping, eating, and researching habits, and the most spiritual practice in my life of late being time spent alone in the archives connecting with the lost generations of this region.

Hopefully soon I will be able to compile my archiving notes into a full, thoughtful post with things like complete sentences.

Until then, I hope you all are healthy and warm, and sharing some seasonal love with your families.  One week to go!
Love,
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Messengers

by Anne Siems

On Incunabula and Sorcerers in the Catholic Church

I mentioned on Twitter the other day that I made a fun discovery while cleaning out my desk.  A few years back I purchased a page from an incunabulum (nerd word for early printed book, pre-1500) from my favorite book collector downtown.  It was dated 1479, and I mostly purchased it because a large capital Q in the middle of the page was illuminated to look kind of like a Hawaiian shirt, which I found simultaneously hilarious and beautiful.

I finally got around to mounting the page to hang up by my bookshelf, and while I was straightening the frame on the wall, a word in the text caught my eye.  Sortilegi.  My excitement grew when I saw, in the same paragraph a few short lines below, divinationis.

I quickly picked out a key phrase and punched it into the Google.  The one result confirmed my suspicion.

It turns out that the page I had purchased solely for its aesthetic value (shame, I know), is from a page of St. Isidore’s Etymologiae, a 7th century encyclopedia, and from a chapter on Magi and sorcery, no less!  I spent a few minutes bounding around the apartment in glee at this stroke of luck, and now I am looking forward to spending some quality time with it to decipher more specifics of what the text addresses.  I don’t expect it to be too friendly towards the sortilegi, given that Isidore was an Archbishop, but it might have some tantalizing details hidden between the lines of condemnation.

Speaking of practitioners under the eyes of the Catholic church, I have some very exciting news!  I was alerted that a local branch of the church was looking for someone to help out in their archives.  After a little more bounding around the apartment at the prospect of this opportunity and quickly dabbing on some Crown of Success oil, I emailed the contact person my background and interest.

All I can say is that batch of oil must have been potent, because in less than half an hour the archives director called me up with an incredibly friendly “you’re a perfect fit!”  *bound bound bound*

So on Monday morning, bright and early, I’ll be creeping down into the vault to check out the archives and meet the staff.  I am SO excited.

…Now if only I could find a similarly thrilling gig that will pay me.  Oh, well; all things in time, right?
I hope the words are popping off the page in wondrous ways where you are, too.

Love,
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Death, Decay and Letting Go

Last week I was impressed by a series of close encounters with images of death.  It started the morning before I left for a short trip.  I was struggling to wake up, and in that paralytic hypnagogic moment, I very clearly saw the foot of a dead child sticking out from where my nightstand is.  It was startling and slightly creepy, but I wasn’t afraid, and I remember distinctly feeling like I already knew the child should be in that corner.

Over the next few days, I found myself fixated by actual death images in my path — a motionless cicada crawling with smaller bright red insects, a pristine but stiff squirrel body and several dead mice in the cabin, a rotting bird being devoured by shield-shaped beetles in the yard, a headless rabbit in the wood, the cries and snarls of a nearby wolf kill echoing in the night while I watched the stars.

I found myself somewhat surprised by how little disturbance I felt, and by how much my attention was drawn to the refrain of morbidity and mortality.

Image

Upon returning home, it came to my attention that an emotionally strenuous problem I had been fretting over for several weeks could be rather easily and satisfactorily resolved if I let go of something, and I felt foolish for not having considered the option before.

Today, I am grateful for signs, and appreciating the lesson of embracing loss.

Thoughtfully yours,
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Synchronicity, and a persistent unexpected patron

Hi there, internauts; it’s been a while.  It’s full on summer now where I live, replete with the requisite heat waves, wildfires, power outages and the usual diluvian catastrophes.

Not all is chaos, though.  I mentioned a few posts back that the boy and I moved to a new place on Halloween night, and we’re settling into our home quite nicely, enjoying getting to know it some more with each new season.  We have a lovely, sprawling container garden taking over the back yard with squash, cucumbers, melons, beans, peas, radishes, potatoes, umpteen varieties of tomatoes and peppers, wonderberries, gooseberries, broccoli, greens, and as many herbs as I could comfortably fit into a giant round raised bed in the front.  The boy’s application of biodynamic agricultural techniques and square foot/companion planting plus organic compost tea have resulted in a surprisingly productive first attempt at urban farming.  Farm your yards!

The 2012 shift is shaking up plans and lives right and left.  Six of my closest group of eight friends are quitting their jobs and moving, with three returning to school for new fields of study, myself included.  Throughout the thrillingly disruptive process of breaking out of my cocoon for a new form, though, I’ve been surprised to notice a certain recurring element, and am taking comfort in the idea that this synchronicity is a sign that I am moving in the right direction.  This post is dedicated to that figure.

If any of you listen to the tremendous podcast Standing Stone and Garden Gate, you may have heard Brendan’s segment on the philosopher Hypatia back in 2010.  I had heard of Hypatia previously, but Brendan’s thoughtful and thorough exploration renewed my interest, and I found myself thinking more and more of this renowned mathematician as a sort of personal ideal and historical role model.  Her death, in my mind, made of her a martyr for the values of universal access to intellectual pursuits and freedom from the confinements of socially imposed gender roles.  Her position as the last librarian of the great library at Alexandria spoke to my devotion to the preservation and fostering of knowledge, and my undying love for ancient Egypt.

While reading about Hypatia, I started looking more closely at her relationship to the supposedly contemporary Christian Saint Catherine of Alexandria, a reputed student at that same great library, a formidable opponent in theological debate, patron figure for philosophers and libraries, and martyr from her desire to remain an unwed scholar.  The parallels between them, and the only much later appearance of stories of Catherine point to her being a Christian adoption/appropriation of Hypatia’s story.  Even the terrible wheel, the instrument of torture designed for Catherine personally by her persecutor, in descriptions eerily resembles the astrolabe created by Hypatia as an instrument for precisely measuring the movement of the stars and planets.

The more I learned, it was beginning to feel as though each detail of their lives was written as a personal appeal to my interests.  Catherine was enormously popular during the middle ages in France, particularly as she was one of two saints who  appeared to the young Joan of Arc, and at whose shrine Joan found her sword (be still my heart).  Even at Catherine’s execution, milk instead of blood flowed out of her wound.  (More on my ties to milk in a later post, perhaps.)  I started to suspect I was being deliberately led on when I looked at images of the traditional rings given to pilgrims at her shrine on Mount Sinai and saw that they are inscribed with my initials and that of the boy, surrounded by a heart.

All this led me here.  One night, the boy and I on impulse agreed to attend a late dinner out with some friends, although out of my usual custom for a weekday evening.  At this dinner, I was seated next to an acquaintance who randomly asked if we knew anyone looking for a place to live.  His parents owned a duplex on the other side of town, and they were looking to move someone in within the month.

The boy and I out of curiosity looked over the pictures on his phone, and found ourselves looking at what suddenly felt like “our home.”  We had been casually talking about moving for a while, but had not started looking in earnest.  We were no longer under a lease.  The landlords wanted someone who would be interested in gardening – we wanted a space to garden.  The house was blocks from the boy’s studio, and closer to our jobs.

The only hitch was that I had been planning to apply to a graduate program out of state for that next year, and the owners were looking for long term residents.  We had to make a decision that night.

I went straight home, and made one last effort to see if there might be a suitable program locally, but my hopes were not high.  I knew of only one in the entire state, and it did have the accreditation I insisted on.  But!  I discovered much to my surprise that the local program had earned the accreditation only months before, and I would never have thought to look again if it weren’t for this sudden opportunity.

What next?  We paid the deposit.  We discovered more and more things to love about this place.  We left on good terms with our former landlords.  I applied for the nearby program.

I picked up a book I had forgotten about, found again while unpacking from our move.  I had purchased it on a whim years and years ago, simply because the description on the back was alluringly unintelligible.  It had been shuffled unread onto donate piles time and again, but always held back at the last.  I got caught up in the story instantly.  I found myself cackling a bit with delighted disbelief when, several chapters in, the narration inexplicably launched into a several-page digression about the life of St. Catherine of Alexandria.

The next morning I received my acceptance letter to the library and information science program at the University of St. Catherine of Alexandria.

Where does that leave us?  In 17 days, I will be quitting the job I have held for six years that has no relation to my interests.  I will be escaping the cubicle to pursue my love of learning, and my love of helping others to learn.  I will be paying homage to Hypatia and Saint Catherine, who guided me here with expert and persistent ways.  And I will continue to stumble across the clues I didn’t know I was searching for on this ridiculous coincidence scavenger hunt that is my life.

Welcome to the next chapter, a digression on the lives of Hypatia and St. Catherine and this budding new librarian under their patronage.

Love,
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P.S. While at a medieval studies conference this spring, shortly after I received my acceptance letter, I came across a new translation of the Life of St. Catherine.  More on that conference and a book review soon, I expect.  *g*

Aside

Spa fun for foodies

Every year in late March, I have a personal holiday on which I pamper, indulge and buy gifts for myself.  It is not my birthday — my birthday is reserved for other people to buy me gifts.  Instead, this is a day all about self love.  It’s a beautiful thing, and I heartily advise you all to take up the tradition.

This year I decided to do something extra special, and spent the evening cooking up natural spa treatments for myself, predominantly made of things found in my kitchen.  I always say any evening that ends with you covered in food is bound to be a good one.  The night and the products were a grand success, so I thought I’d share some of them!

(The recipes I used came from or were inspired by the wonderful book, Earthly Bodies & Heavenly Hair, by Dina Falconi.  Highly recommended, but go easy on some of her essential oil portions, as some she suggests in her formulas are sensitizing.)

First Stop: Avocado Flour Face Mask
Ingredients: Ripe avocado, whole-wheat flour, cornmeal, water, jojoba oil

I started with a face mask made with avocado and flour.  The cornmeal provides a gentle exfoliant, and the combination creates a nice thick and creamy paste.  I combined this with the classic cooling cucumber slices on the eyes.  It was soothing, purifying, moisturizing, and decadent.  I should also mention that it looks fabulously flattering when on…

Next up:  The most luxurious bath you’ve ever taken.
Ingredients: Fresh, organic full cream, local raw honey

This bath could not have been any more delicious.  I put the bowl in a hot water bath so the honey would liquefy while I blended in the cream.  To make things a little sexier, I also threw in some sandalwood and ylang-ylang oils.  Yummy, yummy, yummy.  Milk baths are a favorite of mine (working on an etsy shop… more to come soon, hopefully!), and there’s almost nothing better than making it full cream.  Lactose is a natural exfoliant, and the fats in the milk delightfully softens and moisturizes the skin.  Honey, in addition to all its other magnificent benefits, is also a skin humectant, bringing the natural moisture to the surface.  So not only does this bath look, smell, feel (and probably taste!) sumptuous, you get out instantly moisturized.  Splendid!

La pièce de résistance:  Garden Blend Shampoo
Ingredients: Infusion of nettle leaf, comfrey root and basil, almond oil, castille soap, basil and lavender essential oil

  

This recipe made three nice little bottles of shampoo (shown above with the ingredients).  The finished product is quite watery, not like a traditional shampoo gel, but it works up an AMAZING lather.  Fantastic stuff, and it smells heavenly.  The comfrey is reparative and smells especially nice.

I also whipped up a little coconut oil hair balm with a custom blend of moisture balancing essential oils to replace my conditioner and tame flyaways.

I have to say I was very pleased with the results.  It made me want to touch my hair a lot and make kissy faces, which is always how I like to end my special day.

All in all, a very lovely time was had by this lady.  And I now have natural products I can use throughout the year that I don’t have to worry about poisoning me or my environment, and I never have to spend excessive money on hair products again!

This week, take a moment to give yourself a little pampering, and pamper the earth a little while you’re at it.

Love to you all!
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Because you were certainly wondering…

Many weeks ago, Mister Joseph Magnuson of the Candlesmoke Chapel ever so kindly included me in a Versatile Blogger post, with my humble blog tucked into a long list of intimidating company.  I have been having trouble lately putting thoughts into words for the blog, so I think I will at last go back to this and use it as a prompt to get something posted, even if it is just to say, “Hi!  I’m still here, and thanks for reading!”

Versatile Blogger Award

Per Magister Magnuson, here are the rules to the Versatile Blogger Award:

  • Thank the award-giver and link back to them in your post
  • Share 7 things about yourself
  • Pass this award along to 15 recently discovered blogs you enjoy reading
  • Contact your chosen bloggers to let them know about the award

So, a big thank you to Joseph and Sara at the Candlesmoke Chapel (follow them on Twitter!).  And now to tackle seven things…

ONE
I don’t know why, but this popped into my head first.  Here are some of my favorite Yiddish slang words:

  • bashert — like kismet; soul mates, fate, destiny
  • chutzpah — hubris, sort of
  • kibbitzer — a “meddlesome spectator,” backseat driver
  • altvarg — a decrepit person or thing
  • ahntoisht — disappointed; the one thing worse than angry your parents can be
  • farshnoshket — in much less expressive terms, a drunk person

Although much of my family in recent history was raised attending progressive Methodist Christian churches, my mother’s family is reputedly of Jewish descent if you go back far enough, and in the last couple of decades, several of my aunts have converted to Judaism.  Maybe it was just from growing up in Goosetown, but I somehow became accustomed to smattering my speech with the occasional Yiddish color.  These are my Yiddish greatest hits.  Or something.  Also inspired by a trip to the library with my amazing cousin Izzy.  (“He’s stuck in the philanthropits!”)  Eh, moving on…

TWO
My proudest moment was winning a Twinkie eating contest during a Late Night Trivia event at undergrad.  I managed to get down three Twinkies in 30 seconds, then do 25 sit ups in the 30 seconds immediately following.  Intoxicated by victory, I celebrated by eating the rest of the box of Twinkies.

Some of my greatest memories and experiences have been linked to gastronomic feats, and I have historically loved weird foods (Braunschweiger was my childhood comfort food).  I am not shy about trying new things (birthday dinner highlights included escarole with anchovy and nutmeg), and I like to pass on to others the adventure of good eating.  To my knowledge, (at least since I have been old enough to think about it), I have only refused to try one meal, and that was a goat head during my study abroad.  Normally I would have been excited about it, but we had already eaten every other part of the goat for the two weeks prior (including the sea-creature-resembling stomach parts), I had seen the head sitting unceremoniously in a bucket day-in and day-out throughout that time, and I just hadn’t worked up quite the energy for it in time for breakfast.  I still feel rather guilty about that.

Although I will likely never give up my reign as the queen of fancy cheeses, hopefully, in small steps at a time, I am moving towards healthier adventurous choices.  Only recently the boy and I discovered a delightful recipe for non-dairy “Not-so cheese sauce” made primarily of almonds and pimentos.  Tasty!

THREE
Animal attraction.  I have a thing with wild animals.  No, not that kind of a thing, exactly…  Let me try to explain with some examples.  When I was still in the single digits, I called my mom to the front door to come see the squirrel I had brought home.  A live, unwounded, not rabid, adult squirrel cradled in my arms.  This earned for me the nickname “St. Francis” from my immediate family members.  In the summer as a teenager there was a chipmunk that would climb up and perch on my shoulder while I read outside, and sometimes he would ride in my hoodie pocket or in the cuff of my jeans while I went for walks.  In high school while on a camp out with some friends, I rose early to walk down to the lake, and got swept up in a run through the trees with a herd of deer.

There are exceptions, however, that bear mentioning.  I have identified a list of the top five scariest birds.  They are, in no order of preference: Nile shoe-bills, west African vultures, piliated woodpeckers, wild turkeys, and large murders of crows that move like a giant shadowy cloud.  I am fortunate to say I have only had too-close encounters with four of the five, thank goodness.  The fear is a sort of thrill, but I am still uncomfortable about wild turkeys, after the way they ganged up on me, and how they skulk around like they are covered in snakes… *shudder*  Oh, and I was once rushed to the hospital after being attacked by my own cats.  For the WIN!

FOUR
I am a big nerd.  HUGE.  I was a laminated card-carrying member of a Fox Mulder fanclub.  To be honest, though, my X-phile status kept me out of a lot of trouble back in the day, when I was inside chowing down egg foo young and having viewing marathons with my other nerdy friends every free weekend.  In math class, we would finish our work early and list the episodes in chronological order.  Our lovely and talented teacher, who reminded me of Invisigoth from Kill Switch, would help us fill in the blanks.  As you can imagine, I was in love with her.

My intimate knowledge of X-files trivia did gain me some curious attention recently, however, when I was the only person in a large audience of a live comedy show to gleefully whoop and applaud at a mention of autoerotic asphyxiation.  Raise your hands, nerds, if this also puts you in mind of Peter Boyle and Chantilly Lace.

FIVE
I love music, and I have aspired to keep it an active part of my life by picking up a series of musical instruments.  I started out tamely enough with 15 years of piano lessons, followed by a brief and frightening tour in show choir (the strangling sequins! clown makeup! a horrifying contraption called lollies!  jazz hands!!), retreated relieved into a small women’s madrigal choir, flirted with violin and guitar, then spun wildly off with the non sequitors of sitar in college and in the last few months, my beautiful concertina.  What next?  I’m thinking bagpipes.  The boy recently took up the glockenspiel, and I have to say that glockenspiel and concertina cover a mean Lady GaGa.

SIX
When my sister was little, she wanted to grow up to be a gas station attendant.  It must run in the family to have career ambitions that are falling out of fashion, because I recently applied for grad school to become a librarian.  (*Please, please let that happen!)  I didn’t always have that dream, though.  In second grade, on my birthday, I got to fill out a poster called, “All About Me!”  (Not unlike this blog post, really…)  Under the “what do you want to be when you grow up” question, I wrote in very large, round, pencil letters: “Veterinarian.  … or Parapsychologist.”

Later swayed by new passions, I prepared myself for a future as an archaeologist by teaching myself to read middle Egyptian hieroglyphs and immersing myself in ancient history.  And although fate had other plans for my studies (Practicality! Says the girl with a degree in French literature and medieval and renaissance studies), I still love studying dead languages.  Egyptian, Latin, Greek, Old English, Old French, Sanskrit, you name it… I have flashcards!

The weirdest job I ever had was milking sheep for cheese and soap making.  It didn’t bring in much money for my tuition, but I was awfully fond of the lambs, and I kind of liked mucking around in the barn.  It was also really relaxing to look into the wide vat of pure, fresh milk…

One of my current coworkers is fond of telling me that I have weird stories and I talk about things she never thinks about, but in my experience, there is nothing really new under the sun.  While at an academic conference for medieval studies last spring, I met a total stranger who was not only familiar with my obscure current field of work, but had actually worked on a project my company also handled, and when I asked him the strangest job he had ever held, he said, “This is really weird, but one year I made money by herding sheep…” and I got to say, “No effing way – me too!”

SEVEN
I am really, really clumsy.  I can fall down when I’m not even moving — and I have, on many occasions.  I once kicked myself in the head with a tap shoe while falling backwards down the stairs (while trying to demonstrate my “grace” by dancing for my grandparents).  Once at a birthday party, I got sucked down to the waist into a hidden mud hole, and the birthday girl had to recruit multiple adults to help pull me out.  I once smelled a perfume sample in a magazine, sneezed, and my contact lens flew out of my eye.  I hope I don’t die in some horrible accident, but knowing me, maybe it would be a little bit funny.  I wouldn’t mind that so much, if my death brought a little inexplicable chuckle to the world.

Alright, that’s seven, so we’ll leave it at that!

The original Versatile Blogger Award specified that it should be passed on to 15 blogs, but I am not dedicated enough to blog reading to even be familiar with that many, I don’t think, so I have instead chosen eight.  Here they are — go check them out!

  1. Magick and Mundane
  2. The Forest Witch
  3. New World Witchery
  4. Pagan By Nature
  5. The Juicy Witch
  6. Happily Essa After
  7. A Bad Witch’s Blog
  8. Ivy on the Path

I’d also like to quickly mention how much I am loving the pagan podcasting world lately.  To everyone out there who is taking the time and making the effort to produce shows for us, thank you from the bottom of my heart.  You make my little world go ’round.

Thanks for reading!

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All I have to do is dream, dream, dream…

Hi!  *waves*

I miss you.  Or my imaginary, personified version of you.  I’ve been seeing all these amazing posts at other’s sites lately, and it finally prompted me to just sit down and type, even if I have nothing structured to say.  So… here we go!

I’ve had a couple (or several) weeks spent working till anxious exhaustion overtakes me, but the cubicle stress has been offset by the pleasure of surprisingly witchy dreams to soothe me at night.  One in which I was enlisted by my aunts to do a dark working at that place special to our family, but they told me it would require digging up the graves of murderers on the property.  I told them that by my understanding I could just take some dirt from the graves to the same effect, and my cousin (the one I call “twin cousin” who shares my witchy flavor) said approvingly, “She really knows her stuff.”  (I do not feel that that comment was accurate, but it still felt very nice to hear, sleeping or awake.)  In the dream, I capitulated, and headed to a tiny witchy shop the size of a tollbooth to get some supplies.  The owner said to me as I was picking out my tools, “You have your amethyst, of course, for protection.”  I nodded, thinking to myself, um… no… so I decided to look at some amethyst jewelry as a backup.  Found some lovely and strange earrings, that I think I might ask the boy to help me make.  Tally of remembered protective amulets from dreams is now up to 2!

In another, after a fun little adventure in a cave deciphering sarcophagus hieroglyphs with my dad, and packing up crates of dark blue glass, I was sitting with my family in a golden field of tall grass making truly beautiful music I wish I had the ear to reproduce in waking life.  Mom suddenly swooned, and I rushed off to get a remedy for her, mostly consisting of sweetgrass, one white, and one red rose…

Around my birthday, I dreamt I bought an antique concertina with wrought iron handles that came with a musical journal/scrapbook written by the previous owner.  She had christened the concertina “Circe,” and her scrapbook was all full of glamourous ladies and death.  This, and the fact that I had by then dreamt of concertinas on numerous occasions oddly enough, prompted me to request help from my boy and parents to purchase a concertina for Christmas.  (I wisely settled on a less expensive but good quality beginner’s model, although I had a lot of fun browsing through the gold and rare wood ones…)  It is awesome, and I am so excited to be learning and playing music again.  It’s a challenge getting to know the button placement, but I have been practicing a little every day, and I’m already making playlists of songs I’d like to learn.  The boy is being sweetly tolerant of my honking, halting practice songs.  I now have a weird/awkward music corner with my concertina, my sitar and that baby-size classical guitar I dug out of my parent’s basement.  *claps*  All that’s missing are some bagpipes, and maybe a Turkish ney and some Orff instruments…

Oh!  I don’t think I’ve mentioned it yet, but I discovered a pagan friend at work!  It started with a conversation about bathing with flowers (yeah, I don’t know how we got on that topic either), and somehow we both asked enough vague, leading questions until we figured out neither of us had “whaaaa?” expressions when the other was talking about citrine spheres or smudging.  It’s kind of saving my work life at the moment.  I told him about my surprise serendipitous rendezvous this week in which I ran hastily away from work to catch a bus, missed it, and wound up at the library (which I thought was closed) drooling over a facsimile of a 1659 transcription of John Dee/Edward Kelley spirit channeling, then found THE book of sigils I had been wishing existed in the stacks.  I think we might take a little field trip after work one of these weeks so I can show them to him.

Anyway, new pagan work friend was telling me about some crazy dream effects he was feeling with amethyst and amber by his bed, so I took my amethyst beads I had picked up (after that protection dream, dontchaknow) and went to bed that night.  Dreamt that while walking through the country, the boy and I spotted a family hand dying wool in the most brilliant colors, spinning and weaving and knitting the greatest hats I’ve ever seen, and we decided to quit our “real” jobs and start raising alpacas.  We lived with my parents, and we had to keep a snake in the house to balance out the ecosystem… for some reason.  Mom wasn’t too thrilled about the giant green python sliding past her feet when she was in the bathroom, so we had to make it sleep outside the first couple of nights.  Somewhere in that same dream cycle I had an amazingly vivid still moment nose-to-nose with a horned stang that was quite wonderful, as well.

I don’t feel like I have been doing much that would earn me these dreams lately.  I haven’t done any rituals, no spellwork, no truly witchy reading (unless rereading “Mists of Avalon” is sufficient), no card consultations, not even any meditating or even  listening to many podcasts.  But who am I to look a gift horse – or alpaca – in the mouth?  I am loving it.  And I am finding a lot of inspiration in them for my non-work life that is making that other part we don’t like to talk about more bearable.

In case someone reads this and is inclined to respond, I’m curious what relationship others have with their dreams.  Do you remember your dreams?  Do you find overlap between your spirituality and your dreaming?  Do you take anything from your dreams and apply it to your waking life?  Dreams have kind of always been “my thang,” but I don’t know what others do with them.

So… I guess that’s about it for now.  Here’s a picture of my parents’ dog, just for fun:

Happy New Year!

Thanks for reading, and best wishes for 2012!

Yours,
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On Yoolis Night

Wow, it has been a month of Sundays since I posted anything, and so much has happened!

On Halloween night, the boy and I moved into a new place, a lovely and strange old place complete with stained glass, servants’ stairs, parson’s (and pocket!) doors, a clawfoot tub, howling windows, phantom knocks, a widow’s room, and a pepto-bismol-pink bathroom.  (Not too shabby a resume for an apartment!)  Best of all, it has way more doors than make sense, and they all open with skeleton keys!  *squee*

Okay, sorry.  Clearly, I am still really excited and not wholly accustomed to the new place.  …Mostly because we are still not moved in, because work for both of us has been SO crazy.  I’m trying not to think about it too much during non-work hours, but it’s even starting to affect my dreams.  The other night, what started out as a basic work anxiety dream complete with scary, stiff-necked auditors carrying giant medieval-style books of things I could have effed up, ended with me asking (sincerely, even) how I can be the best [insert my title] I can be, and my dream told me, “Stop doing it.  Leave.”

But until I cave in to my subconscious and quit, I will be suffering in a loopy, overworked, blindly optimistic stupor.  And spending the rest of the time pretending I’m not terrified by my job and focusing on how much the rest of things don’t suck at the moment!

One down side (sort of?) to the new neighborhood, is my commute is significantly shorter, leaving me less time in the morning and evening to catch up on podcasts.  First world problems, folks.  I’m grateful that I have a place to live, food to eat, and the people I love are safe and healthy.

That about saps my gushy positive energy.  But it felt nice to put it all out there.  :)  It’s officially winter at this hour — I draped some lights around our cardboard boxes, and I’m feeling the spirit of the season.  Best wishes to you and yours, readers.  Keep yourselves and each other warm.

Love,
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