Sunday, October 7, 2012

Last Herb Harvest

Gathered more culinary sage and thyme from my herb garden this past week, and it's a good thing I did; it snowed lightly over the weekend.

My zinnias did not survive the cold snow, they've lost all their color and are wilted; the maple in the backyard has lost about 3/4 of its leaves, but the locust tree in front is still green and full of bean pods. I love the changing of the seasons, but then again, it is sad to say goodbye to the growing season...

Monday, September 24, 2012

Forgotten Magic of Fire

Spirits of Fire come to us, we will kindle the fire. 
Spirits of Fire come to us, we will kindle the fire. 
We will kindle the fire, dance the Magic Circle round. 
We will kindle the fire. We will kindle the fire...

~ Fire Summoning chant (listen to it here)

My greatest joy this past summer has been sitting out on my patio, enjoying the sights and sounds of nature with my two cats. I read, the cats roll and sniff and explore, I water my flowers and refill the birdbath, we watch the birds... peaceful bliss... Even at night I sit out there, a camp light to read by, listening to the crickets chirp... But the nights are getting chillier...

So the other night I twisted up some newspaper and collected twigs and chose larger sticks and logs from our tree-trimming woodpile, and layered them like a little tipi in the firebowl and... I made a fire. And it was glorious.

It's not the first fire we've had in our firebowl this year, nor was it the first fire I've ever tended. But it was the first fire that I've completely started and tended all by myself in a long, long time. 

Such a long time that I realized I'd completely forgotten the magic of fire; its warmth, its energy, its transformative quality. Fire is not one of the elements I have a very strong connection with, so it was wonderful to reconnect with its magic once again. 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Autumn Equinox Musings

Autumn Equinox has arrived, but I have been feeling fall in the air for weeks already. My herb garden has bloomed itself out, although the sage and thyme have made a strong comeback after languishing in the summer heat.

Already I miss the long, warm, magical evenings that seemed to stretch for hours upon hours before dark actually fell. The leaves on our maple tree are turning color, slowly crisping around the edges. The days are still very warm, but for some time now I've noticed that although the sun feels as hot as ever, the air is no longer heavy with heat, but fresh and chill. 

Now is a time for balance, and I need balance. I've gone from busy days at work all summer to slow and quiet days at home. My spirit prepares to turn inward for the cold season, my legs ache because of the chill nights, my body wants nothing more but to soak up the autumn sun before its gone each day; but I can't doze away my free time, I need to find a balance of rest and work and play. Lend me the balance I seek, autumn equinox...

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Worktable Wednesday: Making a Match

A couple of years ago I made this Spiral Goddess plaque, which was purchased almost immediately. The customer likes it so much, she  has now asked if I could make a God plaque as well, so that she could have a matching pair. 

No longer having the completed piece at hand, I've been consulting photos I took of the Spiral Goddess to help me come up with a similar, but masculine design.  I sketched out some ideas and then created a cardstock template of the God shape.

Now I am working on filling in the shape with a design similar to the Goddess-- swirls of black and an intricate edge in "lines and dashes." 

Once the design is complete it will be cured, given a patina and varnish and then cured again before it is set on the plaque.

What's on your worktable?

Monday, September 17, 2012

Tarot for 2012: 9th moon

Mid-September brings the 9th moon cycle of the year. I drew the 8 of Pentacles for this moon, back when I did my New Year's Spread.

8 of Pentacles~

KEYWORDS/PHRASES: craftsmanship, student/apprentice, practicing your craft, applying yourself, training, developing or building skills, steady progress, pride in work, take action, work through creative blocks

This card is exactly what I'm struggling with right now. I have been away from my creative work for so long, I don't even know where to start or how to get back into it. The 8 of Pentacles encourages one to simply take any kind of action to jump start the  process-- organize your work space or learn a new technique or just make something, anything, even if you are just going through the motions. Inspiration will follow action, pride in accomplishments will soon follow. 

Monday, September 10, 2012

L'il Bro Around Colorado

My L'il Bro and his girlfriend were visiting this past week so we were out and about exploring some of Colorado each day. Locally, we went to the Butterfly Pavilion...

... drank in the beauty of hundreds of butterflies in their tropical climate... 

... and made some new friends... 

 We also went to the mountains and saw that the aspens are changing color already...

... and discovered that the road to the summit of Mt. Evans is already closed for this season, so we had to stop at Summit Lake, 5 miles from the top.

 And, because you've just got to go at least *once* in your life-- we went to Casa Bonita.

What is Casa Bonita, you ask? Why-- it's the Mexican restaurant with a waterfall and cliff diving, of course!

Because really, how can you eat Mexican food and NOT want to be in a faux tropical Acapulco atmosphere, complete with cliff climbing and diving? Exactly.

I know how to show my L'il Bro a good time when he's in town!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Once in a Blue Moon

I've been sitting out on the patio these past two nights, enjoying not only a full moon, but a blue moon...

There was candle light (faux candle light the second night because it was so breezy) and sandalwood incense, and moon mantra chanting, as well as moon gazing... 

At one point, the moon got caught in the tree leaves...

 I also experienced a little bit of animal magic, as I was visited by a skunk for about ten minutes as I sat on the patio. Friend skunk was only about 2 feet away-- I could have reached out and touched it, but I didn't dare move; the skunk was very calm and I intended it should stay that way. So I sat quietly and marveled at its exquisite tail and bold stripes and sweet face until it wandered away into the night.

I feel lucky to have been visited by wild skunk (and survived stink-free!) and it certainly made this blue moon a very magical one.

Monday, August 27, 2012

To Do List

I sat down and wrote out a list of  things I hope to try and get done in time for when I have a vendor's table at The 21st Annual Denver Witches' Ball at the end of October.

 I hope to have more mosaic boxes, shrines and wall plaques to offer this year, as well as many of my best sellers from last year-- tarot bags, herbal pendulums and hand-held egg rattles. But The Witches' Ball is still  61 days away, so who knows what new ideas my muse might come up with in the meantime!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Around the Yard

My sundial lying on an old wooden patio table, surrounded by deadheaded zinnias...

A glorious sunflower unfurled its glory along the back yard fence...

Friday, August 24, 2012

Feline Friday: Kitty Cuddles

Lately, Sassafras has become quite the little cuddler...

... at least with the man in the family... 

Meanwhile, Dot is content to... NOT cuddle...