~Welcome~

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass... it is about learning to dance in the rain" (unknown)

"Without Darkness, there would be no Light" (unknown)


Thursday, March 29, 2012

Geodes (Pagan Blog Project "G")

 My little geode... polished.

I'm a bit of a stone and crystal junkie LOL so you will most likely find that I often incorporate posts regarding stones and crystals... and this week it is geodes, for "G". Geodes come in different sizes, forms, textures, colors... well in lots of different variations, from Agate to Amethyst. A geode is a sphere shaped rock that contains a hollow cavity lined with crystals. There are different theories as to how they are formed in nature.. from volcanic bubbles, to mud balls with combinations of water, gas, and mineral innards, that over time hardened and formed into these gorgeous creations.





You can find them in their natural form and dyed to add color.They are cool, beautiful, and a bit mysterious, and they are fun to crack open to discover what beauty awaits inside, AND they also have some nice metaphysical properties.




Geode properties include: 
fertility
 creativity
Mother Earth energies
 protection
grounding
visionary properties
energizing the Root Chakra

Some favorite crystals and gemstones actually come from geodes, such as Celestite, Amethyst, Citrine. Other geodes include Malachite, Azurite, Chrysacolla (sometimes a combination of the three), and Septarian.
Celestite (natural) ... I have one almost identical to this one; it's beautiful.

Agate (natural, polished) with a druzy center

Amethyst (natural)

Septarian geodes, aka Dragon Stone
I actually have a real cool chunk of Septatiran Stone; I will include a pic of it at the bottom of this post :)

Malachite and Chrysacolla geode

Citrine geode

Dyed Agate Geode Slab
You can find these in many shops that carry stones; they include blues, greens, pinks, and purples but they are all dyed to enhance the beauty of the patterns formed by Mother Nature and of course, add to their beauty. The dyed geodes are pretty, I will admit, but I prefer their natural appearance. My little geode (at the top of this post) is beautiful... it has all kinds of natural swirls and full of sparkly crystals... it's much prettier in person; the photo doesn't do it justice :(                       

Some geodes having an inner coating of tiny, fine, sparkling crystals; these are called a Druzy or Druse and are often used in jewelry such as pendants and rings. 
An example of a natural agate geode druzy (polished).
Notice the fine layer of crystals on the inside... gorgeous!


an example of a druzy ring

an example of an agate druzy pendant (natural color)

an excellent example of a dyed agate druzy... from alibaba.com

MY SEPTARIAN STONE

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Oracle Card: Cybele

I haven't drawn a card in months and last night I felt the urge to do so. As it often happens, a card fell out during shuffling; when this occurs, the card in question has a special meaning or message for the person asking the question. When I am working with oracle cards, my question is just this: "What message do you have for me?"

Cybele
Mistress of Animals
This card says: "Acknowledge your animal nature"

Cybele (aka Kybele) is the Mistress of Animals, a Great Mother Goddess and Earth Mother or Mountain Mother of Rome; she was born of Stone. Her associations include: hawks, lions, mountains, protection, primitive Earth, the wild untamed nature, fertile soil, caverns, unrestrained sexuality, independence and strength, cleansing and rebirth, and the Grecian goddesses Rhea and Demeter.

She is often depicted as wearing a turret or mountain-like crown, sitting on a thrown with either a lion in her lap or a lion at each side, or driving a lion drawn chariot.

By drawing this card, I am being told to embrace or acknowledge my "animal" nature OR wild nature, or maybe to seek the mountains and nature. I am seeing a connection here... I have definitely been pulled to the forest lately, and interestingly enough... the first trailhead I sought not only was on a mountain, but it included a gorgeous view of the mountains West of it, AND some of the ground I walked on was literally stone... huge slabs of stone, like an ancient stone floor, as well as surrounded by outcroppings of large rocks. This is the area that had so much trash; the area I want to return to and clean up this weekend, if the weather holds. 

I will try to take photos of the "stone floor" when I go back. I definitely had the impression of "primitive" as well as "cool, this looks like an ancient floor or something!" when I was walking on that area. It kinda had the ruin-like-feel to it, and I wondered if it was a natural floor or if it was deliberately laid... although the stones are huge, so perhaps it is natural after all.

So the question is, is this a message to embrace/acknowledge MY wild nature, or to embrace/acknowledge THE wild nature? I'm leaning towards THE wild nature. Perhaps the Mountain Mother is requesting my presence and she approves of my desire to return and cleanse that area of the disrespectful trash... she is encouraging me to do so... or calling me to do so because I have become more and more determined to go back and clean up; I'm actually really looking forward to it, and as I sit here writing this...  I am getting the impression of an offering. Perhaps I will take her some flowers when I go back.



(sources: Goddess Inspiration Oracle by Kris Waldherr, www.wikipedia.org, www.pantheon.org)

Friday, March 23, 2012

Forest Abuse (Pagan Blog Project "F")

I tried to think of something clever for the title of this post, something starting with an "F" but couldn't think of anything (sigh). I visited a few forest locations today... wanted to spend some time with Nature, and maybe take some photos while getting some exercise.

I got some beautiful scenic shots, which I will save for a future post, but I also got some rather ugly pics which I am sharing today... photos of the litter left behind from disrespectful, irresponsible humans. I can't tell you how much this irks me!  If I had the proper tools on hand, I would have done a trash pick up, but when I left the house this afternoon, picking up trash was not in my agenda for today.

I'm thinking I will purchase a whatchamacallit tool.... that has a gripper on a pole, and a whole lot of trash bags, and dedicate a day of cleaning up the forest, because... well this is awful, and inexcusable!  We are blessed to live in one of the most beautiful areas of Arizona, and this is how people treat it. Being a lover of the forest, I just don't understand it; it's so sad.
A nasty old diaper



 A oil container used for target practice.... oil!  
You know some of the oil still existed inside that bottle :(

 a cardboard box and shattered glass

 Cardboard boxes and buckets

 Oh come on!




The Forest is one of my favorite places to be, and it's a place where I feel the most connected to deity. It's peaceful, healing, beautiful, and magickal. How can someone disrespect it so? What happened to the rule, "Pack it in, Pack it out"? 

Beloved Forest, how I love you so! This breaks my heart.


I changed my mind... I don't want to end this in ugliness... 
I will share some of the beauty I saw today, as well as a poem I wrote in 2009 dedicated to the Forest.


Forest’s Lullaby

Peaceful serenity
Cocoons me, renews my spirit
Pacifies my soul
Returns to me, my sanity
Within
Forest’s lullaby

Sentinels wizened in years
Whisper secrets in my ears
Kissed by Nature’s perfume
Caresses my cheek, dries my tears

Blessed sweet voices in chorus
Sweet divas of the forest
Chirping, singing merrily
Notes of healing harmony

Flowing shivery coolness
Cleanses away the dismalness
Worries ebbing, fading
Life’s pressures dissipating

Peaceful serenity
Returns to me my sanity
Where healing and magick abide
Within
Forest’s lullaby

©Reba White 2009


Friday, March 16, 2012

Earth Altar

I saw this bit of tree branch a couple of weeks ago on my walk to the mailbox. It caught my attention then, and I thought to myself, "that's a cool piece of wood" but I left it where it lay. I noticed it again last week, and actually stopped, picked it up and gave it a closer look, but laid it back down. Today it caught my eye again, like it was calling me you know? I took that as a sign, and now it graces my antique cabinet... which by the way has been slowly turning into an Earth Altar :)

I've had this awesome water fountain for years... a gift from my wonderful sons & family; I absolutely love it!  It's a mountain seen with wolves, bears, and even an eagle that sits on a wire and spins when the fountain is turned on... like it's flying. As soon as I moved in last April, this fountain has been the centerpiece of my cabinet, and above it hangs a framed print of a wolf... I love wolves :)

Last Summer I added my painted rock, and a candle, and since then I've been adding my crystals, etc. I've been on the look out for a nice affordable earthy altar cloth, but haven't had any luck yet, but I'm pleased with its progress thus far... maybe I can find some material at my local Wal-mart and make my own... someday.


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Blogoversary Party!


I am joining the Sexy, Dark, & Bloody Blogoversary Party! 
... or will try to join in anyways... trying to figure out what I will be posting and so far, drawing a blank. Hmmm better put my thinking cap on, or maybe invoke my Muse!

The Theme: 
Using my art of choice (i.e.writing, drawing, etc) to... are you ready? ...
To reshape the stereotype about witches that annoys me the most... this could be fun!
Stop back by on April 13th to see the results :)


THE RULES: (by Magaly @ Pagan Culture)

Submission Guidelines
- Be a Wicked Darling (Follow Pagan Culture)
- Submit your own work ONLY
- Previously published work is fine as long as you own it
- Send it via email to magalyguerrero@ live.com
       The subject line should read:
       Witchy Fiction – “Title of Your Piece”
       Include your name and a link to your blog or website
- You can submit:
       Fiction 
       Visual Art
- The Stories should be 313 words or fewer
- The piece MUST be “witchy enough
- No sex or violence for the sake of shock, please. Your tales and visual art should be appropriate material for your teen relatives who are into novels about witches, faeries, dragons, ghosts, vampires, ghouls, shapeshifters, extreme urban gardening, lightning bolts, unforgettably awesome art…

I will read and/or view your work before posting it, but I will not make any changes to it. 

Feathers (Pagan Blog Project "F")

Eagle Feather

Feathers have been long considered spiritual symbols throughout history... Egyptian, Celtic, Asian, Native American... well in many ancient cultures. Birds are considered as divine in ancient cultures; they occupy the sky and are thereby closest to the Divine, sometimes representing deity; they are messengers of the gods, Spirit Guides, and the angelic realm so naturally their feathers are very spiritual.

In tribal lore feathers represent the embodiment of the bird's spirit and their power.They were used in ceremonies to purify,cleanse, and bless the ritual space as well as individuals, and for prayer. Feathers were also worn as a symbol of bravery, spiritual power, integrity, and strength. To Native Americans, Eagle feathers (specifically the Bald Eagle and Golden Eagle) are highly spiritual and held in reverence, for the Eagle represents Father God, i.e. Father Sky, or Grandfather.

In paganism the feather represents the Element Air, deity, as well as representing the type of bird from which the feather came from, as well as tools for smudging and cleansing.

Feather Meanings (bird symbolization)
Eagle- spirituality, Creation, healing, illumination (Father God)
Dove- peace
Peacock- protection, psychic/clairvoyance, ressurection (Goddess Hera, Gods Amon-Ra and Horus)
Raven/Crow- magick, mysteries (Goddess Morrigan, and God Odin)
Owl- dream work, magick, wisdom (Goddess Athena)... Note: the Owl has different symbolism to different Native American tribes (to some it means death & evil; to others, protection)
Pheasant- success
Duck- comfort
Vulture- purification, death & rebirth
Turkey- blessings, harvest (Earth Mother)
Swallow- perception, protection
Swan- awakening, transformation, beauty
Sparrow- awakening, triumph, common nobility
Roadrunner- mental speed & agility
Quail- nourishment, protection
Falcon- agility, grace, mental speed (Egyptian Gods Horus & Ra, and Goddess Hathor)
Hummingbird- joy
Hawk- visionary power, guardianship
Bluebird- happiness
Woodpecker- rhythm, drumming, heartbeat of the Earth, mystical connection
(sources: http://www.spiritfeather.com, and Animal Speak by Ted Andrews)

Other Lore:
It is believed that when you find a feather in your path, this is a sign, or message, that (1) you are on the right path, and  (2) your prayers are being answered.  

I personally like to save the feathers that I find... ANY feather that I happen find.... I have pigeon, dove, raven, duck, and sparrow feathers tucked away in my drawer. I consider them to be messages and gifts.

My Wand with Raven Feathers
I crafted this small wand last Summer, unfortunately our cat Mina (our problem-child) got hold of it, and the crystal was lost and never found.... we are hoping she didn't eat it LOL, you just never know with her!
I still have the feathers stored away safely in a drawer.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

A Sampling of My Art Work

Recently, I was asked by Magaly (at Pagan Culture) why I don't share my drawings... specifically my "nudies". Well, unfortunately my nudes went away with my ex-boyfriend at the time several years ago, and honestly.. I haven't drawn any since. BUT I did find a sketch I did in 2010, so I thought I would share it for now. Hopefully I will be hit with some inspiration to draw some new "nudies" to share later :)

I haven't drawn in a long time... just haven't been in the mood, you know? I used to draw on an almost daily basis, I also used to make wood crafts, and sometimes I would watercolor. I don't know what happened that I suddenly just stopped.

Well.... here she is....
She is dancing with the Full Moon behind her, and magickal energies flowing out her hands... 
I call this drawing, Moon Magick.


 AND 
Here is a rock I painted last July to represent the Element Earth

Monday, March 12, 2012

The Versatile Blogger Award... Yay!

Magaly at Pagan Culture passed this amazing award to me just recently. I can't express how deeply honored I am that she would think me blog-worthy enough...
Thank you from the bottom of my witchy heart, dear Magaly!


Apparently this award comes with a few little rules I must follow:
* Thank Magaly, the award-giver and link back to her.
* Share 7 things about my witchy-self.
* Pass this award to 15 recently discovered blogs I love to read.
* Contact my chosen recipients to let them know.

So without further ado, here are my 7 things about me....

  1. I'm hopelessly addicted to Urban Fantasy! I know... but I can't help myself **naughty grin**
  2. Shhhhh... I like to draw nude women (and I'm fairly good at it)
  3. I can't draw men, they look too feminine :(
  4. I love peanut butter on my pancakes, with lots of maple syrup, and a tall glass of milk on ice
  5. I absolutely have to have a fan at my bedside ON and blowing directly on me year round, regardless of the weather...  it is a MUST!
  6. I hate to cook! Yep, a Kitchen Witch I am NOT. I can cook, I just choose not to (shame on me). What's that saying.... "The Only Reason I have a Kitchen is Because it Came with the House" LOL!!!
  7. I think men in kilts are SEXY

....And my 15 chosen bloggers:

P.S. to my Chosen Fifteen.... 
I realize that some of you may not wish to participate in passing along the award, and that's ok in my book.
 I know these things can be very time consuming, so feel free to opt out if you prefer, 
but I just want each of you to know that... 
I love reading your blogs!
Hence the award :)

While going through my favorite blogs I realized that several have been dormant for quite a few months; I may have to revamp my Dashboard. Now that I have chosen 15 blogs that I love to follow, I have to visit each one and drop them a surprise note... off I go!





Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Empowerment (Pagan Blog Project "E")

I'm about to write about something that I am still learning myself; I am by no means an authority on the subject, nor have I mastered this process... I will readily admit, that I am a work in progress. With that being said, this post is actually a message to me, as well as others.

Webster's Dictionary lists only one word to define empower: v. To authorize


So when a person refers to empowering herself, what does that mean? How does one empower herself? Basically, you are giving permission to (authorizing) yourself to grow, to accept yourself and your power, and to accomplish what you want/need to accomplish. How? By increasing your self esteem, personal growth, spiritual growth, and claiming your power!

How does one accomplish the above? You can obtain these things for yourself by making your own choices, relying on your own intuition, becoming a stronger more independent... stepping out of your comfort zone. You can do these things through contemplation, positive affirmations, incantations/chants, reading self-help books and/or spiritual books, prayer, visualization and meditation, setting goals and meeting those goals... AND YOU ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO BE OPEN TO CHANGE!

My personal favorite tool(s) are Positive Affirmations. Love them! Positive affirmations have helped me tremendously with accepting myself, as well as life's curve balls. I have suffered from "Re-occuring Chronic Depression" my entire life and let me tell you, negative thinking and beating up on myself comes automatically to me. Positive affirmations help me to combat those negative thoughts and turn them around; they boost my mood, give me courage, and help me find trust in the Universe that everything is going to be ok... positive affirmations help me get through change.

As you most likely know from past experience, change comes from being tested in life, and those tests are meant to take us out of our comfort zone, which requires trust and acceptance. These growth spurts are sometimes painful or scary; just remember that growing pains are normal, temporary, and to our betterment. Accepting change is sometimes not an easy thing to do; we often struggle against change in protest, sometimes kicking and screaming, but the quicker we are able to accept change, the less painful the growth spurt.

"Whenever you become empowered, you will be tested."
~Caroline Myss~

"Do not assume that divine guidance flows only when you are in need of help. Guidance continues to flow whether or not you have problems. It transcends problems, heartbreaks, and traumas, flowing through dreams and illuminations. Whether guidance comes during times of tranquility or trauma, however, it is up to you to have the courage to acknowledge it."
~Caroline Myss~


Goals are another awesome tool(s). Start small, setting goals that are not too easy but easy nonetheless, and from there work your way to larger more challenging goals. Each time you accomplish a goal you will feel the sense of pride, joy, and... empowerment! Acknowledge your success and follow it up what affirming your success. By acknowledging and affirming you are claiming your power.

You may be thinking to yourself: "Whoopty-doo, what's all this hoo-hah have to do with paganism?" Well for starters (1) Quite simply, how we view ourselves... our confidence, affects our energy, which in turn affects our magickal workings. Lacking self esteem leads to lacking faith and leads to fear. Your fears are basically from your lack of faith in life and in deity. I'm sure you can understand the significance... these things cripple your spiritual work! (2) You can use this process of empowering yourself by expanding your spiritual awareness, widening your perception, getting acquainted with your Higher Self, and bringing you closer to the Divine... obviously these are significant to your spiritual workings, right?!

The following crystals, stones, deities and runes are just a few suggestions for magickal workings corresponding with empowerment. Keep in mind, that these are just a few; there are many others you can work with.

Crystals and Stones
Amethyst, Carnelian,Clear Quartz, Clear Calcite, Herkimer Diamond, Diamond, Emerald, Garnet, Labradorite, Ruby, jade, Topaz, Fluorite, Lapis Lazuli

Deity
Cerunnos, Lugh, Manannan, Odin, Ogma, Zues, Math [gods]
Cerridwyn, Maat, Maeve, Nimue, Triana [goddesses]

Runes
Fehu, Uruz, Ansuz, Kenaz, Sowilo, Tiwaz


Now.... books! I LOVE to read! These two books I have not read but have added them to my Wish List; they sound awesome and I'd like to suggest them to you as well.....
(1) Empowering Your Life with Wicca, by Sirona Knight
(2) Empowering Your Life with Runes, by Jean Marie Stine

The following books I have read or I am in the process of reading. Keep in mind that I am Eclectic and these particular books are based on Christianity, as you can see from their titles. Hey, before you start cussing me... there are some great teachings here if you an put aside any prejudice concerning Christianity, just saying.
(1) Sermon on the Mount, by Emmet Fox
(2) The Moses Code, by Janet E. Twyman
(3) The Disappearance of the Universe, by Gary R. Renard
(4) Women, Thou Art Loost, by TD Jakes

I'd like to wrap this up with three more quotes from Melanie Tonia Evans at

"Taking back our power means deciding who we are, and who we wish to be. This is only possible when we no longer make our past or other people's opinions "about us".

"Every adversity in your life is presented as a response to your previously unresolved fears. This perfect system allows these subconscious undercurrents to be exposed and become conscious. By understanding and embracing this belief system you'll dissolve it and replace it."

"You are a more powerful creative being than you could ever dreamed possible!"