Magickal Preparations for Winter

1.  Cleanse each room of energy debris…The negative stuff, the dark and ugly energy lurking in the corners and beneath the couch and chairs, the energy that hides in the cubbies and closets and scares those children who sense it…smudge, incense, burn candles, and bring out that magickal broom– sweep, sweep, sweep that space clean.  Leave a wee bit of something behind to keep this space clear, to let the Dark Ones, the Spirits, and Ghosts know that you’ve reclaimed this space, that it is yours– a mojo bag of protection and deflection, some cleansing & protective herbs tied up in pretty bundles and tacked to the ceiling here and there, over the windows, or door frames. And never assume that cleansing this space once will keep it clear forever. Every once-in-a-while, light some candles & incense, send positive energy through this space. Keep your guard up, keep your magickal energy pure, draw your magickal lines in the sand.

2.  Gather your harvest of herbs…As I write this, we’re just nine days out from Samhain.  In my neck of the woods we’ve been incredibly lucky with the weather so far.  We’ve had a couple really cold nights, only one where I had to cover anything, and we still have a lively garden.  So now is my time to Gather Those Magickal Herbs & Plants!!.  In the stillness of the Indian Summer days, I will clip and snip, tie and bind, hang and dry a variety of plants that will be tacked to my kitchen ceiling, crushed and added to bottles and jars, or arranged in pretty glass bowls.  This is the season for the Green Witch to reap the harvests of Mother Earth, to restock her magickal cabinet.  Hurry, before winter descends and the snow flies.

3.  Put your garden to rest for the season, magickally speaking…The nature spirits have spent all summer fluttering about your garden, gracing it with health and a wealth of blossoms and buds.  But it’s time now for nature to retreat into the depths of winter; it’s time for the plants to finish their final cycle; it’s time for the soil to rest.  On a quiet still autumn day, take a white candle and some incense into your garden, thank the fairies and spirits for their care and presence and magick.  Bid them adieu, until we meet again in spring.  Scatter to the four corners of this magickal space crushed rosemary and sage, allow the candle to burn in the center of the garden, sending out healing energy for Nature, as well as a  last flame of light before the darkness of winter descends.  It’s sort of bitter-sweet, this process for me; but you can leave your garden with a wistful smile, knowing that this is only a temporary good-by, a temporary sleep.  When spring comes, you’ll rejoice with the flowers and herbs and shrubs once more.

4.  Prepare your vehicle for winter travel…Just like most people check the tires, change the oil, and mundanely “winterize” their vehicles in anticipation of severe winter weather conditions, so you will want to magickally “winterize” your vehicle, making sure there is a powerhouse of positive protective energy surrounding the vehicle itself and everyone who travels in it.  This is an ongoing thing at our house.  I use stone talismans created personally, decorated with symbols and words related to specific deities invoking their energy for protection.  I use mojo bags filled with calamus root and plantain– one of the strongest combinations of herbs for safe travel– along with a tiger eye stone and even hair clippings from the car’s owner and people who will be routinely traveling in this vehicle.  Smudge the vehicle with sage or a favorite incense; asperge (sprinkle) the vehicle with salted water for purification and blessings; anoint the four sides of the vehicle with Mars Astrological Ointment, dipping your finger in the oil and drawing an invoking pentagram discreetly near the bottom of the car doors.  Settle into the coming winter months with the security of knowing that you’ve done all you can possibly do to assure safe travel for you and your family members

Photo: Magickal Preparations for Winter: 2.  Gather your harvest of herbs...As I write this, we're just nine days out from Samhain.  In my neck of the woods we've been incredibly lucky with the weather so far.  We've had a couple really cold nights, only one where I had to cover anything, and we still have a lively garden.  So now is my time to Gather Those Magickal Herbs & Plants!!.  In the stillness of the Indian Summer days, I will clip and snip, tie and bind, hang and dry a variety of plants that will be tacked to my kitchen ceiling, crushed and added to bottles and jars, or arranged in pretty glass bowls.  This is the season for the Green Witch to reap the harvests of Mother Earth, to restock her magickal cabinet.  Hurry, before winter descends and the snow flies.

A Brief: things I love & things I hate

*Note: I may be re-posting a re-post. Quite honestly, I’ve written so much that I don’t remember what I’ve posted where anymore. However, I may have a few things to add to this– yes, I believe I do. I re-read this while having coffee this morning, and there was just something about it that scratched the itch in my soul.

 
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Things I like and why…maybe.
 
I love moonlight— I remember laying on Grandma’s couch in the bay windows of her large kitchen one summer night and raising up in the dark to hold my arms out in the moonlight that was spilling through the glass. My arms looked all puny, and white, and ghostly, and the moonlight felt good on my skin…the same way some people claim that the sun feels good on theirs.
 
Chocolate…this is a mandatory like for all females. It contributes to our feelings of well-being, our energy level, and our rear ends, but in a good way. ;) It’s used to alleviate guilt, stress, anger, and jealousy. It soothes the soul and adds to the ambiance of our lives– sort of like a gentle ‘Ommmm’, or one of Deuters CDs.
 
I love autumn. I love the beautiful and vibrant colors- golden hues, maize, browns, tans; the warm colors- shades of orange and red. The smell of dry autumn leaves in damp earth is one of my favorite scents. I love deep blue autumn skies as a backdrop for the trees. I love the sound of geese overhead, flying south; the influx of wild birds and squirrels at our feeders; the crisp mornings that are a balm from a hot summer; the bounty that comes with a garden harvest, pumpkins and gourds. I love the occasional foggy, chilly, mist-in-the-air, gray day. I love the primeval urge to bake spicy breads and pies; the smell of hot coffee; and the warm golden puddles of light from my candles, which were lit early to soften the growing darkness.
 
 
 
 
blackcat.jpg picture by witch_of_endoreCats…they wreak of mysticism, they know what they know, and they keep secrets. Cats don’t pressure you for emotions you don’t feel like showing. They know when to crawl into your lap and seek your attention and affection, and they know when to retreat into the shadows and leave your space open and clear. Cats walk with spirits and commune with fairies; they don’t encompass magick, they are magick.
 
I love rain…I love the smell of it, the sight of it, the sound of it. I love the dark steel gray days that go with rain. I love the cozy solitude found indoors on rainy days- someone hunkered over a book in a pool of lamp light; a pretty teapot, full of jasmine tea, nestled on a trivet; cats curled into furry balls on the couch and kitchen chairs. I love the way drops of rain slide down the window-panes. I love the rumble of thunder in the distance and loud claps of thunder overhead. I love the way tree trunks look darker and more well-defined and sidewalks smell of damp forest pathways.
 
 
 
 
Things I hate– and yes, it’s perfectly okay to ‘Hate’ something. It’s an honest human emotion, like love and lust, only no one wants to acknowledge it because we were raised in a mostly Christian society that attempts to pigeon hole human emotions and appetites as ‘good’ or ‘bad’. Yep, you go right ahead and hate anything you feel a hankering to hate. Once in a while we hit on something to hate and we hate it so much it gives us enough gumption to change it.
 
I hate the dead of winter…it wreaks of hopelessness and the fact that there’s no way out, because none can be seen at this point. It’s not early enough winter to look pretty, and it’s not near enough spring to look hopeful– it’s just plain dirty and cold, gray and dark.
 
I hate a liar…My grandmother told me that this is one of the most dangerous creatures walking the planet. The very nature of what they are makes them impossible to fight.
 
I hate the idea of legal marriage. It is absurd to think that you need to receive a sanction of approval from a judicial system to be seen by the world as a legitimate couple. Not only do you have to pay a fee to obtain a ‘license’ so that someone deemed ‘legally qualified’ can marry you. Should the marriage not work out, you have to pay a great deal of money to this same judicial system so that you can extricate yourself from what I consider a personal relationship. As far as I’m concerned, Wiccans finally got it right with ‘Handfasting’…after all, if you know that the other party can end the contract with no fuss every year and a day, seems like everyone might work harder to keep the magic going. This sure beats the hell out of the Christian alternative– you stay with someone forever, until you die, whether you’re happy or not.
 
I hate “Mean Girl Mentality”. This phenomena is usually sistered up with “Group Mentality”, and when you put both of these disease ridden syndromes together, it becomes lethal…lethal to common sense, good manners, and courtesy.
 
 
 
 

 

Quote for the day:

People spend a lifetime searching for happiness, looking for peace. They chase idle dreams, addictions, religions, even other people, hoping to fill the emptiness that plagues them. The irony is the only place they ever needed to search was within.
 
 
~ Romana L. Anderson
 
 

The Witch’s Corner: February 2010 Newsletter

As much as I hate winter, I have to admit that it’s beautiful. My daughter Guinevere and I have taken photos around our own home and around the Fremont area of a spectacular Winter Wonderland. You’ll find these photos plus more at this newsletter.

With February and the infamous Valentine’s Day coming up, our theme is “Love”…

“…This month we’re going to wallow in
love. We’ll be looking at herbs and spells to find our true love,
call in our soul mate from the realm of the universe, revitalize
an old relationship, and chart our destinies in the world
of duality and couples.”

You will also find a whopping old hoodoo powder that will get rid of a ‘true love’ you’d be better off without…we all make mistakes, and this magickal powder will help you fix that right up.

There is a new section called “Kitchen Wytchery”, and here we’ll discover the natural magick contained in certain foods, herbs, as well as recipes.

Happy cooking!

You’ll find the February newsletter by going to–

http://ladyamythyst.webs.com

– and clicking on ‘Monthly Newsletters’ in the menu.

Winter At Our House (photos)

Today the temperature is a whopping one degree above zero.  Our only saving grace is that there is no wind.  We’re keeping the bird/squirrel feeding stations filled for the wildlife- I expect they are burning up a lot of calories just trying to keep warm.  We also leave a little food out now and then for the stray cat that comes through ever so often:  Mr. Black…I’d rather he’d have a bite of dry catfood than a bird!

We’ve had more snow this winter than I can remember in a long time, since I was a child and the winter of 1968-69…which was unreal.

We have quite a view from our upper livingroom windows, and our front door is behind the snow pile.  Anytime we have big snow, we get big drifts in the front yard:

SL384067.jpg picture by witch_of_endore

My hubby doesn’t feel the cold…really.  And I’ve tried to get him to give up his favorite shirt for over a year– I have to say that a few days after this pic was taken, I found it lining Salem’s cat bed.  Anyway, men in the mid-west tend to be hardy and tough…good thing.

SL384071.jpg picture by witch_of_endore

The bird feeders hang on this wrought-iron frame, both winter and summer; and the remnants of last year’s sunflower crop are still providing seed and food to the animals.  We watched a little squirrel, hanging upside down from the frame, pulling and tugging to yank off a head full of sunflower seeds:

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After the big storm, we had big drifts– both front and back yard.  We had to dig our trash cans out:

SL384069.jpg picture by witch_of_endore

That’s our Resident Elf standing in the driveway.  She’s that inconspicuous little shadow on the right: 

SL384073.jpg picture by witch_of_endore

That’s another daughter behind the drift– and I don’t think it’s enthusiasm you see, I think she’s got cabin fever somethin’ awful.  She’s probably screaming, "Give me Spring!"

SL384074.jpg picture by witch_of_endore

Up and down the street, no matter where you look…there’s snow, lots and lots of snow:

SL384068.jpg picture by witch_of_endore

The bird bath now doubles as a feeder.  I couldn’t keep water in it anyway, I couldn’t keep it thawed out:

SL384083.jpg picture by witch_of_endore

In spite of this rough winter, our Nebraska squirrels are fat– corn fed!

SL384086.jpgpicture by witch_of_endore