Imbolc or CANDLEMAS or Là Fhèill Brìghde – The Tide and the wheel turns.

pillow_campfire

It was sunny and bright today and lovely. Our own sort of Groundhog Day to see if there will be more weeks of bitter winter. My children played for hours out in the snow swinging and doing the recycling. Waking the world of our sleeping gardens with their giggles and whispers. Throwing snowballs at each other and exploring the grounds for long buried forgotten treasures rising up through melting snow.

Tonight it is the Superbowl and we watched a smidge to celebrate the pageantry then switched it to Chronicles of Narnia where the White witch – naughty evil and bitter though she may be – is still my vision of what the Winter Goddess can look like. I just imagine her with better more loving parents and fairies who taught her to dance and play in the snow while making friends with the neighbor children. But for looks – 10 – Tilda it is. I just love the design elements for her character and her delivery in the role was perfect. Long live Aslan and poor dear misdirected Jadis.

tilda

Tonight is the start of Imbolc or CANDLEMAS a Sabbat (holiday) for wiccans and green witches. We leave a bowl of milk and a muffin or carrots outside for the spirit of the Goddess and her animals to take comfort in our belief in all things kind and comforting. I am sure the rabbits and the raccoons and mice appreciate it.

 I also like thinking of Brigid as the fire Goddess bringing hope to us all reflected in red hair and flushed skin. Pale as the moon and snow but with the reddest lips and eyes brown and flickering like sparked woods in the fire. No one to play her in my mind she lives uncast but there is a lot of art through history to showcase her beauty.

brigid1

My baby says she saw a chipmunk today which would mean that winter will be almost over. It could have been a mouse. It has been a harsh winter for the mice but here where there is a constant stream of bird seed and popcorn they flourish, as long as they stay out of the house – where the cats await their presence with much glee. A Chipmunk in our world means that spring will be here soon and we watch for them with much hope.

For me and my family, CANDLEMAS is a celebration of the turn of the wheel –the shift of the earth (in our hemisphere) towards light and the start of new projects and for new focus. A time of initiation and the burning of candles and small cauldron fires. There was old fashion cooking in the fireplace when we were little and jumping over bonfires was the start of an all night party where the kids roasted marshmallows on sticks and in the sweet winters of California we would dance in a circle around the fires and sing sweet songs of spring come home – these usually took place right on the beach. There would be a family gathering where people brought covered dishes to rival the Lutherans and flowers were put into the ocean with prayers of thanks and promise. We made crafts from wheat and corn then burned them with such childlike abandon. Lot of dancing and ribbons.

The women in my family not shy with spell casting or kitchen witchery would share stories and recipes. Lotions and potions and smudge anyone willing with white sage and lavender.

My mother liked to make animal masks and put them out on baskets – people would be a unicorn or a bear or an owl, whatever energy they were looking for. So much laughter and singing.

We have all gone separate ways and yet not. I still remember and phone calls are made with good wishes and love. All the things that holidays should bring. I share the rituals with my own children and they will put their own slant on things. One to many pancakes mixed with excitement this morning and one of my daughters threw up all over the floor. Wild play acting and another is hit in the nose with someone’s head. It is a day like others but not. There is a hum in my spirit. I know as I have shared with my children this day – that spring and summer will come. In times past others did not know this with certainty. The world was more magical and science was held close by priestly casts that held power with their knowledge that the seasons were set and stone would cast shadows that illuminated the path forward. We share more freely with increasing speed all that we know and all that we believe or do not believe. We accept that others may not see things as we see them and we know with certainty that Spring will come and that the harsh, cold, fear filled winter will melt away and feed the rivers of knowledge running into the communal seas of time where all of us will float together on through space. There is freedom fueled by fires of hope. Children can go to school and learn all there is to learn, limitless with knowledge now. Freedom never known in our history opens wider daily for more to be hugged by her presence. Knowledge and Freedom. The lights against fear and oppression. The flames burn brighter.

To my sisters in faraway lands on the other side – today we all work on our quilts and blankets – today we here know the snow will melt and the birds will sing and soft grass will blanket our way to market. Today you sing a song on the other side of the wheel. The hot summer buzzes and shimmers and you shake blankets out on the line, and sing a song of the coming cool breezes and the falling of leaves. Our blankets equally warm, feed our souls with the rituals of returning.

I wish you many wonders. I light a candle for you and whisper to the flame.

We are all truly one and the same.

Blessed be.

 imbolc

EMR exposure and brain danger. Do you hear me now?

I have thought about this for a long time. There is just way to much radiation and soon to be more with the digital upgrades and even more cell phone and radio waves flying throught the air. It’s a bit like teflon-how we all have traces of it in our blood now, even Natives in the Amazon.

If you can please keep these electronic devices away from your children and your own brain. Time will tell, but I think the bees have given us a bit of a clue. A child’s brain is still developing into it’s 20s. Just a thought today. I am not anti-technology but I find technology gone wild, without studied effects a bit troublesome. Aren’t you even the slightest bit curious why the Senate would not allow a delay in the transition to DTV?

My teen says she does not care and would risk the danger for technology, but that is a child’s way of  thinking. – They live for today mostly.  Our family does not use cell phones and will not in the future. We also unplug as much as possible anything electronic in the house. It is true though that more and more you can not find a place where you are immune to EMR exposure.

Remember…people back in the day thought that “coal” was an amazing thing that everyone should have burning in their homes. And that cigarettes and cocaine, opium and foot binding were fun/fashionable and even touted as medicinal. That Asbestos was a miraculous product we should coat every inch of our homes and schools with. Just because some one is selling a product that may seem useful in the short run does not mean the companies selling a “product care about you or your children. Please stop wandering around the market gabbing on your box really loud with your bluetooth – all of you crazies. Please do not drive while having a really great conversation about your lunch. Hands 10 and 2 please.

http://www.danger.com/ They do not even try to hide the research and the obvious “danger” of cell phone usage. You do the math.

http://educate-yourself.org/cn/cellphonelinksdrmercola1jan08.shtml

http://www.weizmann.ac.il/

Extra points if you are sporting a cute aluminum hat while reading this….please send me a picture.

Top 100 science stories of 2008 Discover magazine.

I broke two fingers the other day on my typing and ice cream pint opening hand. (Broke at Storage between the car door and the wall, ouched little kids style.)

My Peace fingers.

Have been just organizing and reading a lot and will get caught up soon.

http://discovermagazine.com/columns/top-100-stories-of-2008

Loved reading all these articles. We have come so far and yet have so much longer to travel. May your journey be one of peace and inspiration.

Mixed hope…

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

deerclan

A PRAYER FOR THE HEALING OF NATIONS
     By Lily-Therese “Sacred Dove”

Oh Great Spirit, Our Father, whose breath of Life we experience in every direction of our great nations, hear us. Great Spirit whose voice we hear in silence and in the roar of thunder, listen to our prayers for World Peace. We come to you as the children of all great nations; in love, faith, trust, and unity.

Father Sky bring us warm rains of cleansing waters. Give us clouds with silver linings and the ability to cope during the wind’s of change and uncertainty. Mother Earth bring us an abundance of food to feed all the nations. Give us a bountiful harvest to nourish those that walk on two legs, those that walk on four legs, those that fly, swim and crawl. Grandfather Sun, shine brightly on all nations. Grandmother Moon light our way in times of darkness.

Creator of all great nations bless all of your creations, sky eagle and tiny ant, great bear and majestic mountains, winding rivers and powerful oceans, rain forest and desert sands, mighty trees and green valleys, fish in the seas and birds in the air, tricky coyote, and peaceful dove.

Bless the weak, the hungry, the lonely, and the homeless. Bless the poor and the rich, the mighty and the fearful. Give us strength to fight the powers of darkness. Give us hope in times of depression, faith in times of fear, and a joyful loving heart. Give us healing in spite of our negative emotions and love to replace all hate.

Great Spirit, Light of the World, bless all of the Great Nations and bring peace and harmony to our universe. Heal, bless, prosper, and unite All Nations through the power of Your unconditional Love.

****************

So must it be.

I have mixed hope today as we begin this new Journey. I feel the joy and desire and the shedding of skin that so many in our nation are feeling. I get that Obama is a one man stimulus package and that so many are so liberated on this day of days. I still though feel just a little empty, mabey by the end of the day it will be better and I will get caught up in the waves of hope and speratus.

My little children are filled with the belief and the faith of change. My Son has been a huge Obama fan since day one, as was my teen. My youngest is all Native American and a Green Party witch like her mother. My husband – King of the proletariats and busker hater finds the whole Obama experience a bit over the top “Hollywood”, he is disgusted by the commercialization of a sacred transfer of power.  I think he is secretly happy and hopeful, but must remain gruff for the sake of the children and realistic expectaions. He did not diss the homemade apple cinnamon bundt cake.

I do not hide the fact of my dissapointment over once again no woman as Commander in Chief but I know our time will come and I celebrate the overwhelming Joy that people are feeling. It will be different, I am just not sure how much. The Masks are different and there is Historical Precedence. The world may indeed for a time see America as being or becoming a different animal. Time will tell. Ghandi said “You must be the change” You. No one man can save us, not even you Bono though I am willing for you to try.

I think this is my favorite blog right now and you might enjoy living the experience through her eyes. http://www.tayarijones.com/blog/ 

Tayari Jones a brilliant writer and a lovely woman inside and out. For her I am happy. For my children who still are filled with hope and delight and believe all things good are possible.

M.O.O.

moomom_logo

Mothers of Organic (Fathers too but that would be FOO) Here is their website http://www.organicvalley.coop/farm-friends/moo/

I was Vegan for a very long time before moving to Wisconsin. Macrobiotic also but I love cheese and honey so back to Vegeterian it was. I do notice the difference in both energy and appearance (you seem pinker when you eat fish and chicken – mabey its all in my mind). I have several friends who will still not eat anything with eyes. I would love to say we never eat meat and only the healthiest of foods but in the Winter Wonderland the growing season is short and the fresh fruit and veggies at the market -while delicious- are sprayed with all kinds of chemicals and shipped from great distances (both a boon and a bane). The food from the heath food store is crazy expensive and don’t they know it. One thing I will not skimp on is the Organic Milk. Last summer we switched over for good. I was tired of the GMO reactions in my kids to the overly processed and messed with “milk products” being offered and kept noticing how when you left milk out for a few hours it turned a sort of grey green and lumpy. Organic milk does not do this. Do the milk experiment and see for yourself. GMOS or genetically modified milks are more for the benefit of the milk manufacturer than for the consumer. It is not that they are adding uber brain boosting ability chemicals they just want Bossy to pump out more milk. There are many brands of Organic Milk on the market and some stores are now offering their own brands. Just a heads up to you people out there – milk is in a lot of things so you have to read labels. Organic Cheese is best too.  Its all expensive but worth it in the end. I would love to hear from you if you do any milk experiments. We bought several brands as a science experiment over the summer – left them out for hours and then compared. I think we will do this again and take some pictures. Soy Milk is a good option too. The chocolate almost passes the taste test.

I just happened to see this a moment ago researching organics: http://www.tehrantimes.com/index_View.asp?code=186950  (Tehran Times)

My dream Publishing Company.

I will add to this as I go. When I grow up and start my own Publishing company I am going to use a few companies as inspiration.

First Google’s offices in Zurich. It’s Metacafe just click it.

http://www.metacafe.com/watch/1332537/google_office_zurich/

Another is this lake/ocean view room. Yes that is right I think we will build underwater too. Why not. I think we will have some places for the employees to live as well as work, if they want or are visiting from other countries.

nap-room

68 degrees

It is freezing outside and inside too for that matter. Our old cottage has heating oil which is a nightmare of  $cost$ = so we have vowed to leave the thermostat at 68 which the little kids do not mind seeing that they are part polar bear. But the Teen was born in California and I am from San Antonio and we hate to be cold.  Dear Seraph is a native to these Northern climes and is happy putting on a hooded sweatshirt. The ice and snow….I love looking at it from the window but I am the Heat Miser and much prefer the warm 78 in the house (really about 73 is perfect) but I know it is wasteful and I am not putting those great knitted sweaters and long johns to good use. I know this will be better for the environment and our family budget but if I start to see my breath the deal if off. I have heard you will get used to it in about two weeks and that it is healthier for you body.

I am going all Matrix though and making everyone sleep with me so that I can use their energy to keep warm while we watch HogFather, which it so happens is one of our favorites at this season. My kids love the Hogfather but the white horse, Mr. Grim himself even better.

“Things just happen what the hell” Terry Pratchett, Hogfather

Long way around economics…

I get this. I know what they are saying but I just do not agree with it. The trickle down effect is not a realistic practice. Good in theory but in reality if your child is hungry and needs new shoes a few bridges and the nice thought that in five to ten years more kids will be able to eat or not have cold feet just does not resinate with immediate need.
I think it is very much a theory where economists try to do the truly best thing but the long way is not helping shell shocked american families in the now.
I do like this video. The CBS – Sunday Morning people always tickle my fancy and I do get it.
I just happen not to agree. 

So if you give my family a hundred dollars – we are not going out to eat as is discussed in the video. We would most likely pay our electricty or buy winter shoes for the children. Buy soup or fruit for juice. Most likely we would put it towards the childrens lunches and breakfast, ensuring their ability to be well nourished and able to pay attention in school – helping them to behave and learn. In the future they will then be able to go on to Uni and get better jobs and will be healthy because they could run and play when they were children. Leading to better health of mind and body. Their parents marriage stayed together because there was not so much stress and they were able to relaxe and get along. The trickle up effect in full flow – up stream in that as a family we contribute more to the community not just with money but with time and consideration. The answer is not more debt. Infrustructure should be a States issue. Much like getting the trash taken out in your town is up to your Mayor. The Federal government should see to the people themselves and make sure every child has an education and is fed and clothed. Safety is a local, state, and federal issue.  

Health issues should be thought of in this same fashion. Just as you have police and fire dept. every person – especially children – should have health care. This is easily solved by having Health facilities in schools. They already have councelors for their minds and spirits – just include a team of regulated MDs. Easy peezey.   You see where I am going with this? A bridge to the future. Let the states build the roads.

If we had given every American a million dollars it would still have been less money than they have given to the financial institutions and I just bet there would have been some amazing trickle up stories. Mabey use some of that money to support soldiers and their families as was promised. It is ridiculous how they are being treated – services cut. Health care poor – facilities rotting or nonexsistant. How about building up that infrustructure.

Children and Health Care first. Corporations and Lobbyists last please. Now pass  the gravy.

Greens in the news.

The Onion – I was wondering what they had to say.

I am still waiting for the breakdown of who won what where in our Green World. It is a tiny trickle – a stream that someday will become a torrent.

What could we have done for our world with a billion dollars?

So the message I got – mabey it is just me – if you are attractive and rich you can do anything. I know I know – I say it to the kids all the time – “You can be anything you want to be, do anything you want to do, with a lot of hardwork.” Still, if he (BO) were not attractive, young and a rainmaker then where would we be? It is what it is. I look forward to our Green Party getting on board with this – we have to have some hunky 35 year old Greens willing to work it for the cause. Would help if he is an investment banker or lawyer too. Sorry Ralph and Cynthia. Mabey a Fireman, I always liked Firemen…(only if he had Noam or Carl’s brains).

 

eric2012

The US is just not ready for a woman pres. yet or I would have fancied about our Green Gal candidate too. Okay I would rather have substance and smarts and integrity – no slaves to the machine thank you.

In the Green News:

Cynthia McKinney thanks Noam Chomsky for endorsement
Cynthia McKinney today expressed her appreciation for the support of Professor Noam Chomsky, noted linguist tenured at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In private emails with campaign supporters this week, the respected social critic noted that he had voted Green in 2004, and would be voting for the party ticket next Tuesday, as well.
2008-11-04

Cynthia McKinney & Rosa Clemente represent the kind of politics we all need to see in our own countries
I read the other day that Toni Morrison will be voting for Obama. A couple of weeks ago it was Alice Walker writing what I described as “driveling bullshit.” and one more example of the mainstreaming of the progressives – Rosa Clemente has a more definitive list here. Obama talks about bringing “fundamental change” but the only fundamental change is his colour and when one looks more closely even his colour is not that fundamental after all. Obama is intrinsically tied to the mainstream, pro-Zionist war mongering American superstructure. Though disappointing it is not so surprising that so many millions all over the world have been drawn in by Obama who panders to black and white notions of a “post racial” America and world. An imaginary world of convenience particularly for the millions of white people who will vote him into the White House.
2008-11-03

I have not given up on hope. Reading some of the blogs that I love to wander through – most of them Obama supporters – I have hope in these people and many people like them that they will be the change we want in the world. They must be. I have hope in them.

The Fall clean continues…


I have to start this out by saying Mrs. Meyers and her Lavender cleaner has the most calming and loving affect on our household. It is my absolute favorite product with Borax and white vinegar coming in second. and now…Mrs.Meyers has a website The peppermint soap and soy candles look amazing.

This is a checklist I got from Real estate.com several years ago and still use. Though it is Spring in half the world I think you can use this list any change of season. Please note – we do not have a chandelier but I leave it in because someday I will visit that Paris market or that Shabby Chic Estate/Hotel sale.

Because of the coming snows yard clean up is still very much the issue as well and now I wish I had started two months ago like my older and wiser neighbors. I am sad to see the garden go.

Fall is a good time to give your home a thorough cleaning.  With the holidays approaching, you may have family coming to visit or parties to host.  A deep fall cleaning gets your home ready for the holidays and company.

Getting started
Before you begin cleaning your home, do a little preparation.  First, have a plan.  Make a list of everything that you want to accomplish.  If your cleaning is going to take more than a day, create a timeframe.  You will also want to gather your supplies before you begin.  Try to have on hand the following: 

  • garbage bags for throwing away as much as you can as you clean((recycle-freecycle give away – purge)),
  • gloves to protect your hands,
  • a good duster,
  • white vinegar for cleaning most surfaces as well as mirrors and windows,
  • lemon juice to remove stains from counters and to use as a disinfectant,
  • baking soda for cleaning and scrubbing down your sinks, tubs, and toilets,
  • club soda to remove stains in carpet and upholstery,
  • distilled water to clean leather furniture, or
  • your own favorite cleaning products.

 
Quarterly tasks 

  • Wash down the baseboards and moldings.
  • Clean the exterior of all of your cabinetry.
  • Wash the porches and exterior doors with an attachment on your water hose.

Fall tasks
Because of holiday preparations, it makes sense to make certain tasks a part of your fall cleaning regimen. 

  • Clean the carpets.  Nothing makes a home look better than freshly cleaned carpets.  And, if you are worried about your niece spilling cherry pie on your freshly cleaned carpets, find a company that will come back within a specific timeframe to remove stains.
  • Clean the chandeliers and light fixtures.  Leave the chandelier in place to gently wash it – just place a towel below it to protect the furniture.  Remove the light globes from the other light fixtures and soak them for cleaning.  Wash the porch lights, too.
  • Clean the attic.  If you keep decorations in the attic, fall is a great time to clean it out.  Toss any junk that has migrated up there.  Also, vacuum it out by starting at the ceiling and working your way down (wear a mask).  This can improve the air quality in your home.
  • Your kitchen is going to work overtime during the holidays.  Prepare it by cleaning the oven and range.  Also, clean out the refrigerator and freezer to make room for all of those leftovers.
  • Be sure all of the silver is polished and ready to be used. ((uhmmm put this on the list for the Paris shopping spree as well))
  • Clean out the gutters when the leaves are through falling.
  • Clean all the bird feeders with gentle soapy water and give them a good scrub inside. Store the bird seed in tight containers in the garage (or under the sink) for filling up the feeders and making bird seed ornaments in the winter (( I added that one))

Fall is a busy time, but you won’t regret taking the time for a deep cleaning for your home.  Giving your home a deep cleaning can help it to look its best for the upcoming holidays.

Good time to go Green with the kids if you haven’t already – Martha’s Green List starter pdf

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