Monthly Archives: February 2012

The Wheel turns to Ostara 2012……..

Merry Meet dear friends.  I hope you’ve all had a wonderful weekend.  I know I did.  We have enjoyed a few days of seeing the Sun shining!  It’s been wonderful after several gloomy ones.   Though it’s cold out, the Sun makes me feel all warm inside.   I’m sitting by a warm fire, stocking feet up on an ottoman, laptop on lap and glass of Baileys by my side.  I’m listening to my Ipod, hubby is snoozing in his chair next to me, and my daughter went on to her room for the night.  It’s peaceful and quiet and my mind turned to the next Sabbat…Ostara…so I decided to write a post. 

First, feel free to do a search here on my blog for Ostara…that will bring up all the previous posts I’ve written over the last 2 years.  That way you can find the correspondences, recipes, pics of altars, rituals etc again.  I don’t want to keep repeating myself every time I write on the same subject 🙂  As we all know, Ostara is the first day of Spring!  The days are longer and starting to get warmer.  Depending on where you live, you may see grass starting to green, spring flowers starting to shoot up from the ground, critters and birds getting more active, and people getting out a bit more, shedding their heavy winter coats.  Garden Centers are filling up with seed packets, spring bulbs and flowers, patio pots, and all the goodies us garden Witches love. The stores are filling up with Easter candy, stuffed rabbits, and Spring clothing.  Everybody’s mood gets just a bit lighter and a bit more energetic..a Spring in their step so to speak LOL. 

 

 

It’s spring fever.  That is what the name of it is.  And when you’ve got it, you want –

 oh, you don’t quite know what it is you do want,

but it just fairly makes your heart ache, you want it so! 

 ~Mark Twain

 

Now here in Ohio…March can often have us with snow on the ground still.  But sometimes, we see balmy weather and an early Spring too.  Either way, I can still feel Spring coming in my soul….and it feels great!  As much as I love Winter, Spring is a wonderful time of year too.  My mind turns to cooking lighter, planning out my gardens and herb pots, finishing up any Spring cleaning that didn’t get done (I always save carpet cleaning and window cleaning for this time of year) and planning some outdoor fun.  Taking nature walks this time of year is so wonderful!  While on a walk, pay attention to what you see around you.  The trees may be budding, spring ground cover blooming, mushrooms may be growing and you might see some baby critters too.  Take a big old sniff of the air and the dirt….you can smell Mother Earth waking up, stretching, blooming…..ahhhhhh!  If it’s really warm, take off your shoes and walk in the grass and dirt…or sit up against a tree, Sun shining on your face and feel the Earth’s vibrations..you can literally feel Her humming….vibrating….coming alive!  Let the energy surge thru you….feel the quickening in your heart and soul.  It’s magick!!

 

Right around Ostara is when I start picking up the things I need to start my herb seedlings.  I buy the organic pots, organic soil and good seeds.  I like to get them planted and growing right around the first day of Spring.  I bless them with a magickal spell (you’ll find it in last years post here) and keep a close eye on them for the next 6 weeks.  I love doing that..watching them sprout and grow.  Some seeds do better then others…but I try every year to see how they do.  Then right around Mother’s day…into the ground and/or pots they go!  I love the whole process..it makes me happy! 

My family celebrates Easter as well with members of our extended family who are Christian.  So we do the family ham dinner, dye eggs and hide them for the grandkids, dress up in pastels etc. There are bunnies and tulips and colored eggs on my pastel- colored altars too.  Yes, Easter is a nod to our Ostara, though Pagans don’t celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ….a Christian belief.   Ostara…… is more about recognizing the lengthening days, the awakening of our Mother Earth, the work to come in our gardens, and the long dark spell of Winter being over! It is the turning of the Wheel…then end of one season and the start of the next.  I still like to have beautiful meal of good food with my family for Ostara too.  Being outdoors is a must and I like to do a ritual to welcome Persephone back from the Underworld..bringing Spring with her!   As a Mother, I can imagine the joy Demeter must feel everytime her beloved daughter comes back.  Think of that joy and find it yourself in your celebration of this beautiful Sabbat. 

In the next week or two..I’ll be posting a few recipes, pics of my altar, and I’ll post pics of Mother Earth coming to life around me.  Don’t forget if you want to…to look for my posts from last year and the year before for MORE recipes and more information.  We have about a month until Ostara…I’m sure we will have more Winter weather in the meantime.  But now….you can start thinking about what you’ll be doing when this next month or so is over and Spring has arrived.  A wonderful way to while away the cold Winter days that are left 🙂  It won’t be long til you’ll see this……:) 

  

And Spring arose on the garden fair,
Like the Spirit of Love felt everywhere;
And each flower and herb on Earth’s dark breast
rose from the dreams of its wintry rest.
~Percy Bysshe Shelley, “The Sensitive Plant

Blessings and Love, Autumn

*Sources..my own writing, all pics from the internet.

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Filed under Easter, Family, Flowers, Garden, Gardens, Goddess, Holiday, Mother Earth, Nature, Ostara, Quote, Seasons, Spring, Winter

Thankful Thursday 2/16/2012…….

Merry Afternoon my friends.  I’ve ended up having a quiet stay- at- home day today due to my daughter Sara not feeling well.  It’s a rainy, gloomy day and fairly warm..in the 40’s.  I spent the morning putting on a big crockpot of vegetable soup and set out some yeast rolls to thaw.  I spent a little time on doing and filing my taxes (done!) and a bit of paperwork.  Now I’m just listening to pretty music on my Pandora radio, relaxing ….and decided to write a blog Post. 

I changed the theme of my blog…the picture of the gorgeous cardinal is my own photography.  Captured him one  day when we had a bit of snow to show him off to his brightest red!  I adore cardinals..have always been drawn to them. I make sure we put out black oil sunflower seeds for them..it really draws them to the feeder. I’m always astounded at their beauty and happy to see them.  How appropriate that our little schoolhouse feeder is red as well.  Made for a beautiful picture 🙂 

Today..I’m doing a Thankful Thursday…I haven’t done one in a while..and I’m feeling quite full of gratitude on this quiet, rainy afternoon.

 

–I’m so thankful for you all….my readers.  I now have over 214 followers and over 41,000 hits on my blog.  I also had my biggest week of hits ever..the week of Imbolc.  Thank you so so much for having an interest in what I write.  It gives me some motivation to keep doing it. I appreciate it much!

–I’m grateful that all of my family who were sick the last couple weeks with the stomach virus…are all much better and on the mend, including myself.  Unfortunately, I think my daughter Sara may have a touch of it now. We are waiting and watching and taking good care of her.

–I’m grateful for a rainy day.  There is something about a rainy day that brings quiet to my house…slows things down a bit…and of course it will help bring Spring soon to Mother Earth!

–I’m grateful for the smell of delicious veggie soup brewing away and knowing my hubby and brother will enjoy it when they get home from work.

–I’m grateful for the kitties on my lap while I’m trying to type this LOL!  They make it a bit difficult to type 🙂    I love them so much…they help me feel loved and contented.

 

–I’m grateful for beautiful celtic music ….music soothes my soul…or winds me up..whichever I need 🙂

–For Words with Friends…..LOL  Just sayin 🙂 

–For the fun of a new recipe book to peruse on a rainy day.  Can’t wait to try out the recipes. Oh…it’s a Gooseberry Patch cookbook, called Fresh from the Farmstand.  It’s all recipes for using fruits and vegetables!  Will be wonderful for the summer!

–For a hot cup of coffee on a sleepy, rainy afternoon!

–The smell of patchouli incense burning beside me.

–Peppermint foot lotion

–My hubby’s gift of an eco watch to me for Valentine’s Day..and that he thought of his daughters and grandkids too.  He is a sweet guy 🙂

–That my brother who has lived with us for 6 months due to moving here from PA and looking for a job..found at least a part time job til something better for him comes along.  He is happier working.

–For my family…always…who bring me joy every day.  My daughters, grandchildren, son-in-law, husband..they are my world.

–For my magickal family…who everyday show me what the love of true friendship is….they are ALWAYS there for me and I’m always there for them.  You all know who you are!!!  I love you!

–For the time to work on my Book of Shadows this month.  I decided to use binders..which was the perfect thing for me and it’s coming along fabulously!  I’ve loved working on it!

–For Masterpiece Theatre…Downton Abbey…I have thoroughly enjoyed this mini series.  If you haven’t watched it..check it out.  I’m sure PBS runs it often.  Sometimes I wonder if I lived during that time..it feels so familiar to me. 

 

–I am also most grateful for my path…My Moonlit, Goddess loving, Witchy path.  I am so content in every way with my spiritual life.  I’m so Blessed the Goddess lead me to Her.  I have Joy in abundance!!

I’m a very lucky person.  My life isn’t easy always….but it’s a good one.  Full of love, beauty, joy, friendship, &  family.  Anything that comes along that’s not those things…we just work to make them so.  Life is too short not to appreciate the little things…they are, after all, what makes Life so precious.  I’m most Blessed. 

What are you thankful for today?  I hope you have more things then you can count!  Blessings my friends!

 Love, Autumn

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Filed under Family, Goddess, Music, My cats, My Favorite Things, My Writing, Thankful Thursdays

Happy Valentines Day…….

Merry Meet friends!  Hope that you had a wonderful weekend.  I spent it resting and relaxing.  Winter has shown up again here in Ohio.  We had a bit of snow and much colder weather.  Except for dinner out Saturday night with hubby and a grocery trip..I stayed in by the fire, working on my Book of Shadows, reading, journaling and watching movies with my daughter Sara.  It was lovely 🙂  Tonight we’re expecting more snow which I love…as you know if you’ve been here before 🙂  

As you know, Valentine’s Day is tomorrow.  I knew I wanted to do a post about it, but not sure What about it.  I could talk about it’s pagan roots and the history of the holiday.  I could talk about how it’s just a way for card companies to make money.  But what I decided to talk about was LOVE.  After all, our Valentines….are our loved ones.   Those we love the most in this world.  Our significant other, our children or grandchildren, maybe some extended family or best friends for some.  But many of us want to somehow acknowledge our loved ones on this day.

There are so many ways to do it to celebrate the day.   A special dinner, flowers, candy, small gifts, cards in the mail.  There probably isn’t too many of us who have forgotten the thrill of getting those little paper surprises in our homemade, heart covered shoeboxes when we were in school. LOL.  I remember how important it was to pick out the very best valentines to give to my classmates.  The excitement of opening each envelope, while having some heart-shaped confection and super sweet punch during the class party.  Then keeping that shoebox and those cards for months after..pulling them out and looking at them again and again.  🙂

Then, when I got older, it was that card or gift from that special someone….a boyfriend.  It was all romance and goosebumps.  The thrill of a kiss to go with the gift.  I can remember my boyfriend filling my locker with pink and red balloons and cherry heart-shaped suckers.  Then he met me after each class with a red rose. *Swoon*   So romantic and I felt blissful in my teenage Romance. 

 

Then I got married, and Valentine’s Day was a sexy red nightie and a bottle of wine in the early days.  Still romance…steady and strong and fun.  Then came children….and Valentine’s Day turned into pink frosted sugar cookies or cupcakes with sprinkles.  Back to making the heart covered shoeboxes and helping my children pick out the perfect Valentine’s cards for their classmates.  Hubby and I started having Valentine’s dinners out for some time to ourselves.  Marveling at how time had passed and remembering more romantic Valentine rendezvous 😉

 

Then I watched as my daughter was wooed by a boy and her heart swooned as mine did with the little things her current boyfriend did for her.  Now I watch her with her own children…again with the kids party valentines, shoeboxes, cupcakes. As Nana, I enjoy shopping for small gifts to show my love for them too.  I keep watching the years go by and the cycle continue.  The Love continues always…..

 

“Time is too slow for those who wait, too swift for those who fear,

too long for those who grieve, too short for those who rejoice,

 but for those who Love, time is Eternity”.

~Henry Van Dyke

Ultimately, Valentine’s Day, for me, reminds me of constant Love.  We all  have Love in our lives.  It should be celebrated everyday….but let’s admit it…Valentine’s Day is the perfect day to be SURE that we celebrate it.  So today…with MUCH LOVE….I wish you a Happy Valentine’s Day my friends!

Blessings and Hearts, Autumn

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Filed under Daughters, Family, Grandchildren, Holiday, My Writing, Quote, Valentine's Day

Bloom where you grow……..

Merry Meet my friends.  Blessed Full Moon to you all!  It is completely overcast here tonight…expecting a bit of snow too!  Despite the overcast night I can feel the pull of the Moon and will spend some time..snow or no…with Her 🙂  I’ve been under the weather ..again…but this time with a stomach virus I caught from my little granddaughter.  She started pre-school about a month ago and already has gotten sick and passed it on to her loved ones LOL.  It seems to be lasting 3-5 days , today is the end of my 2nd day, so I expect to feel much better tomorrow.  Luckily, last night, I spent time outside, clearing out the sickies and calling on some healing for my family..when I could see Her!

Saturday, as I was driving home from my daughter’s house, I passed a church up the road.  The sign out front caught my eye.  It said ” You must know how to flower where God has sown you.”  For some reason…it stuck with me.  Of course being a Witch and loving the Goddess..I immediately turned God to Goddess in my mind, but the meaning stands no matter what Deity or path you follow.  Bloom where you grow…another way of putting it.  But the wording on this one meant more to me.  You must KNOW how to flower…..  hummmm??

Now I’m a Taurus…very earthy, well grounded, steady and common sense. I’m not one who has my head in the clouds and follows pipe dreams.   I understand on a simple level what the sign is saying of course.  Make the most of what you have, your circumstances, your day..your life. Standing around complaining, bemoaning, hating your life is going to get you nowhere….except miserable.  I think all of us “know” that…but not all of us know how to do it.  I always wonder what gives some people a better coping mechanism, more “gumption”, more positive energy then others to deal with what Life sends their way.  You all know what I’m talking about.  You will see someone who has everything good in life….and yet they are the most unhappy, angry, mean people in the world.  And you’ll see somebody who hasn’t got a “pot to piss in” so to speak …and they are the most joyful, exuberant, happy people in the world.  Why is that?

Now I don’t believe in the Christian concept that God sets your Life in stone… and all things happen for a reason..and God doesn’t give you more then you can handle etc.  I believe that we are given Freewill…that no matter what circumstances we are born to or fall into….we CAN change them if we need to.  But you have to WANT to.  It won’t just happen if you don’t make it so.  Now obviously, there are things that can’t be changed.  I’ll use myself as an example.  My Mother is one of the most controlling, belittling, critical, mean and unhappy people I know. My childhood was a scary place.  I had no control as a child to change that…obviously.  All I could do was to try to be the best I could be ..despite her.  My best moments in my childhood were when I was away from her.  So thats what I did.  I stayed away as much as possible.  I got involved in everything!  From paper routes and baby sitting, to school groups and functions.  I spent weekends at girlfriends houses, went to my grandmothers as much as possible, holed up in my room with books when I could. I was rarely home and was most active in School and extra-curricular activites.   It worked.  Somehow I grew up NOT  believing that I was the all the things my Mother said I was.  My sense of Self remained basically intact.  I Chose not to believe what she was teaching me…Thank Goddess. 

 

Somehow, I inherently “KNEW” how to flower where I was sown.  Somehow, I knew what I needed to do to care for myself..to nurture myself…to Bloom despite what I had to deal with.  I believe that it was inside of me.  It’s there in all of us. We just have to listen.   As a Pagan Witch, I truly believe this.  The Goddess/God is with us always.  They want only the best for us.  Everything we need to “deal” with what we are handed,  is there..if we listen for it.  Now I can hear some of you saying…but I have this terrible illness, or I’m flat broke, or I’m alone….how can I “flower” with all that going on?  Well…that is hard and terrible and sad…but how you handle it is still up to you. You can be miserable and just let it happen to you…or you can do something to change it.  Often, it’s just telling yourself that “I Can Do This”. ” You  Can” get thru Cancer with  a positive attitude ..that you will live every day given you with Joy and bring joy to all those who love you.  “You  Can”  learn to live with less..find ways to be happy that doesn’t cost a lot of money.  Live simply, cut the excesses, or get another job doing something you Love!.  If you feel lonely or alone…well that is the easiest one to fix if you ask me.  There are people at every turn…many of them looking for a friend.  Remember..what you put out comes back.  Open yourself up..feel yourself full of love for others..and it will be returned in Full…you’ll see. 

Now I am no Pollyanna…I know that life is tough…I’m living it too.  But “knowing” how to flower…in any situation…is inside of you.  You can do it if you want to.  But you have to want to.  Bloom where you grow…or change your circumstances…either way..You’ll have a better life..a happier life.  You know, Pagans believe in re-incarnation.  I believe that we come back to Earth to learn a lesson in each life we live.  Perhaps, deep inside….the Goddess/God is trying to remind you what you’re here to learn.  Your difficult circumstances may be a lesson…and you can learn the lesson well …by dealing with it well.  That’s my thoughts on it anyway 🙂 I hope you all have a Life that is a Garden..full of lovely blooms.  If not…how about growing some of your own.  🙂 

 

 

I wish you all a Beautiful Full moon night….May your Life be all you want it to be.  Make it so!

Blessings and Love, Autumn

 

 

 

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Filed under Discussion, Family, Full Moons, Garden, God, Goddess, My Writing