Monday, March 21, 2011

Time flies, I tell you! Time flies!

So, once again, time has slipped and it's been over a month since I've been able to get my butt back on here. Good news is that I am officially done working overnights for Job 2. I was literally getting about 3 hours of sleep in the morning and 1 or 2 hours of a nap at night before I had to go in. That was murder!! But now, I am back working just day. I won't rant about how I got tricked into working overnights. That's another story I wish to bi-pass. Something interesting though, I did TRY to quit on Thursday. Emphasis on TRY. A lot of things happened and to keep it sweet and simple I'm still employed there with the promise that they are going to try and make things better. We shall see. I've changed a lot as a person the past few years. At one point I would have sucked it up and let the place abuse me but now, I think I've lost my filter. You know the one that tells your mind hey maybe you should use that word, or that tone of voice. Nope, it's all gone. At least when people run out of chances. It can be a good and bad things I guess. I'm not rude or bitchy unless someone is that way to me first. I think life has just thrown so much at me the past few years I've gotten to the point where you will definitely hear what I have to say. lol.

So on another note, I suppose everyone saw the SuperMoon? I did but it wasn't so super. I think I missed the big show earlier in the afternoon. I didn't get to get an eye on it until about 11pm. It was pretty bright though. I opened my blinds and the kitty and I basked in the moonlight as we slept (that's our version of a full moon ritual. lol). I just love how this year has been so full of events. There was a Lunar eclipse on Yule, we had a SuperMoon on Ostara, What's next? Hello moon power, welcome, why don't you stay a while!

Speaking of Ostara, I hope everyone enjoyed the day. I most certainly did! Ostara and my Birthday aligned this year. So I most certainly made some Birthday wishes that counted. I spent the day with my mom and we partook in some retail therapy. Not much, for us it's not about the buying so much as it's about getting out the house and just being around people. lol. We're so special, I know. Although we did hit up the smell goods store and I even got a chance to visit the Disney Store. :D EXCITEMENT!! lol. And We ended the day with dinner with the rest of the local family and my two besties. I came home to my kitty and we did some birthday magic. I also baked some Ostara bread that I feed to the birds outside and planted some seeds for my garden. I'll do a separate post about all that I think. It'll allow you to view that instead of my ramblings, if you please lol.

So yes, overall, awesome sabbat! awesome birthday! awesome supermoon! And this morning started with a good ole fashioned rainstorm. Spring is definitely here! Hopefully it will bring about some much needed changes in my life. A girl can dream right?

Friday, February 18, 2011

Dear Universe,


Sincerely, Jess

Do you ever one of those moments where you look at something and the universe comes full circle? Something happens and you're say, "FINE! I know, I know! I've been complaining too much! *sigh* My bad."

I'm currently babysitting Cheyanne, my God/Goddess daughter. I don't get to spend too much time with her because I work so much and she lives a good 30 minutes or so away from me. She's every bit of 3 going on 30. But her wisdom is infinite. Everything is better in purple, sponge bob rains supreme, and she is already a gamer girl in training (I'm so proud of that last one :D ). But looking at her puts a lot of things into perspective. The past few months of working two jobs can really tare a person down both mentally and spiritually. Everything can become so blurred and all in all you begin looking for a way to escape and give up. But I look at her and I think, ya know, life is only as difficult as you allow it to be. Often in life you only see the path you want to be traveling on. And that drives your intentions on the path you're on now. And you hope with all your might that at the end of the day, you're one step closer to the outcome you've been looking forward to. Perhaps that's been my problem the whole time. I've been knocking at a door expecting it to open instead of looking for another way in or trying another house.

So instead of complaining about having to work two jobs or the fact that those two jobs have nothing to do with my degree, I'm going to work on being happy that I actually have another job after over a year of trying to get one. And I'm going to be happy that I can actually pay most of my bills (minus school loans.... but let's not go there or talk about the extreme amounts they want from me). Life is about perspective. I learned that from Chey today. So what if you can't find the purple crayon. Grab another color and get to coloring! Or something like that hahaha. funny the life lesson that get thrown at you through the simplest of means. Silly universe. I hope your day is looking up like mine! Now, if you will excuse me. I've got a few episodes of Go, Diego, Go! to plow through. xP

My sage in all her wisdom hahaha

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Let's Talk Commitment

Let's talk Handfastings. So I just got a book from Borders (WHICH JUST CLAIMED CHAPTER 11 BANKRUPTCY!!!! POUR QUOI!!!!!!!!! *insert extreme sad face here*) it's called Passages: Handfasting: A Pagan Guide to Commitment Rituals and it's by Rev. Dr. Kendra Vaughan Hovey. I find Handfasting to be extremely interesting and I would probably want to have that as my ceremony one day rather than an actual wedding (or both depending on the partners pref.). Either way, I might as well get acquainted with it and see what it's all about.

Overall, it's a pretty informative book. And if you are planning a Handfasting it has some useful information for you. The author is the founder of the First Church of Wicca which is always an interesting concept for me. I wouldn't mind attending a Wiccan Church just to see what it's like. but I can tell you structured things like church definitely are not my walk in the park. But I digress, she starts off with a chapter on the history of Handfasting which I found extremely interesting (the nerd in me was very pleased). She discusses how Handfasting can last from a year and a day (366 days by the lunar calendar, I learned something!) or for a life time. Throughout the rest of the book she discusses not only the Pagan aspect of Handfasting but also ways of working your commitment ceremony around interfaith relationships between your partner and between their family and yours. Most Pagans today don't hail from a Pagan family (go figure) and she gives tips on how to take the Handfasting ceremony and to combine it with pretty much any other religious ceremony under the sun. She provides examples from a good number of different religions and cultures world wide and ways to work their special rituals and customs into the Handfasting to make it appealing to both partners and families without it losing any of the specialness (is that a word? lol) to you or your partner. I thought that was rather clever of her and very forward thinking since most people who would have a Handfasting would come across that sort of problem (I'm no where near having a Handfasting and it already has occurred to me). She also provides different Goddesses and Gods from many different pantheons that are focused on love and commitment that you could call on for help during your relationship and ceremony. The author provides love meditations for a Pagan couple, an interfaith couple, and even a solo meditation in case your partner is uncomfortable with the idea of meditating. There is even a chapter dedicated to non-Pagan friends and family. The rest of the book talks about putting your Handfasting plans into motion. From finding the right person to officiate the ceremony(ies), to budgeting, to finding the perfect dates (why not a Sabbat Handfasting? And don't forget the moon phase either!). She talks you through locations, themes, colors, flowers/herbs, attire and jewelry, incense/oils, and even spells. She also provides an example Handfasting ritual and even notes where to add in the interfaith rituals and ceremonies as well. The author brings the book to a close with discussing the first year and a day after the Handfasting and how to keep the love and romance alive though out your many years of being committed to each other.

She does mention quite often about not mixing pantheons for the meditation and the ceremony because it's rude and disrespectful. I've never really thought to much about the mixing of pantheons. Certain other authors I've read say that it's ok, because if a God or Goddess calls to you and they aren't from a certain pantheon it shouldn't matter. They are calling to you and that's something you should focus on more than where they are calling from. It spurred the question to mind also, what does one do if your partner is from a different tradition than you? Do one of you have to compromise and not invoke your own personal Goddess or God? That seems a bit.... well, unfair. I would think that so long as you offer the deities a place in your special ceremony they wouldn't hold any offence to whether or not they are mixed or not. Especially when it is between two people from different walks joining together. It's a lot to think about that's for sure. I guess it all deals with perspective. Being an eclectic it's easy for me to find a middle road.

There was also a mini rant about if you are in the broom closet which I thought was a but unneeded. And through out most of the book she assumes the reader to be female which I'm never happy about sexist assumptions but that's not calling her a sexist. Because honestly most people who read the book and plan the Handfasting will probably be women (as in any marriage ceremony I guess). And there are a few things I could knit-pick about, being as it not my personal taste in ritual fashions and what not. But I won't delve any deeper into those.

Overall,I really did like the book and it was worth a read. It's originally $10.95 off the shelf, I paid about $3.19 for it. Like I said I think it's worth a read and is very helpful if you are planning a Handfasting or any commitment ceremony and you wish to incorporate some of your Pagan customs. Whether you decide to pay full price for it, well, that's up to you and your budget. ;) It's a pretty short read (about 230 some odd pages) and I managed to plow through it in a few hours. But you could definitely spread it over a few days. I will be very happy to place it on my Pagan reference shelf where it will one day get used again, hopefully. When the time is right and the sad sucker comes along to want to spend the rest of his life with me (lol that poor soul). ;)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Books Make Me Happy

Ok, well thanks to Borders and their used section not to mention my wonderful free shipping I have acquired a few new books and I have ADD now when trying to read them. I'll start reading one and then another comes in the mail and I have to start taking it a look at it. lol. It might be an addiction. So all together I've got Handfasting: A Pagan Guide to Commitment Rituals (I've always been interested in what it's all about. And have always said that when my Mr comes along that's the ceremony I'll be doing. It'd be nice to see what I'm getting myself into lol), Crone's Book of Charms and Spells (which is pretty interesting. I've already read most of it. It's pretty small but I always taking a look at spells and charms written by other to spur ideas. And the charms and spells do appear pretty old school in tradition), The Enchanted Cat (this gives a whole background on cats folklore, cat deities, cats as familiars, magick you can work with your kitty, and so much more. This one makes me the most excited!), Travels Through Middle Earth: The Path of a Saxon Pagan (which gives a general idea of Germanic Pagan roots, Deities, Holy Days, and a lot of the special rites and things they do just in that special path. That's my new thing, to learn about the many different Pagan paths). So that's all I've got so far and I've spent no more than $3 a book! I'm so shop savvy. lol.
I've managed to get a bit further in my book, The Second Circle, but not much. Seeing as I've had so many other books coming in. ;) But so far she gives examples of where to find other books to further your Pagan education. Such as searching in the ancient civilizations and history sections, or checking out the folklore and fables/fairy tales of that region as well. She also gives studying tips and tricks and what not. Needless to say so far I've been a bit bored. I mean, so far she's giving really good information but honestly if you were a study queen in High school or went to college you know these things already. But it never hurts to hear them again I guess. Either way, it's till too early for a verdict.
Purple Bunny mentioned shopping at a bookstore and having books fall off the shelf or just grab at your attention while browsing the pagan section. And I must say that has happened to me quite often. That's actually how I picked up my very first book on Wicca. It just yelled at me, and I decided that since I didn't know what I was exactly looking for then why not. Best decision I've ever made. Oh! And that's also how I ended up with my tarot cards. I own 3 decks, but I only use one. One deck is my very first deck that I got when I was in still in middle school I believe, which was ok for learning the ropes but it wasn't a deck I connected with. And I have another deck that I own simply because it stared in a dream of mine, but as far as diving we do ok together. But my up most favorite deck that I use like crazy and can never replace found me on a bookstore shelf in the New Age section. I wasn't even looking for a tarot deck. I honestly had given up on really connecting to that form of divining. And bam, there it was. Needless to say it lighten my pocket a bit, but it was worth it. And now I go and look at these other really cool tarot decks and it would be nice to have a new pretty and creative deck, but I just can't feel a connection like I do with this one. So PurpleBunny, you are definitely not alone! I think everyone experiences a little "cosmic nudge" at least once in their life.
Speaking of comic nudges. Anyone ever have any strange dreams? Let me rephrase that, lol, anyone ever have any dreams that when you woke up left you thinking that it was some cryptic message? See usually my dreams are pretty mild and well, normal? I guess? Every now and then someone or something will pop in. But for the most part they are just ramblings of the subconscious. But last night I know I had the strangest dreams and I just can't remember all of them. Before I went to bed I realized I lost/misplaced something (I blame the fae) and I asked for help finding it. So I dreamt that I found them in the most obvious space and I went to return them to my mom and she was in a room with like 3 cats , 2 bunnies, 2 hamsters, and a rat. lol. I asked her, "where did these all come from?" and she said "I knocked over one of the statues and they just came running out." hahahaha. Odd right? from there I awoke thinking wtf? Normal response I'm sure. Later I settled back to sleep and the only thing I remember is my dog sitting very still and erect in front of my bed. You know how the dogs sit for dog shows? Very proud, chest out, and like they are waiting for something. Well that's her. And that's all I remember. Just her, just sitting there, and I believe the faint flicker of a candle light. And usually someone would say well maybe she was in my room for a visit. But nope. I have to keep my door shut or gated up so that the cat and dog don't interact (my cat is apparently very territorial in his old age). So I know it wasn't that. What a strange night of dreams. HHmmmmmm, well. I have much to ponder this morning, not to mention I have a long day filled with work and a function tonight. See ya!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Questions of an Advancing Pagan

So, obviously I can't be alone when I say I'm a little frustrated and overwhelmed on my path. Being a solitaire witch has its good points and bad points. But lately I've been seeing most of the bad points. Like the lack of direction my path has taken. I kind of feel road blocked. I've read who knows how many books, blogs, and websites. And most of them repeat a lot of the same information. Which isn't a bad thing. For the the beginning Pagan or Witch there is a wealth of knowledge out there. And that definitely helped me get to this point on my path now. But as I feel myself advancing I find myself running out of resources to help me grow further. Where does a girl go from here? I've been at this road block stage for a while now. So I decided to take a break from my normal habit of researching and I've been reading things for fun (mmmm, scifi/fantasy books!! DELICIOUS!!!). But now I feel ready to jump back into my researching or discovering of the path and I have been falling short until recently. I found a book online the other day for about $2 (you've got to love the used book section on book store websites) called The Second Circle: Tools For The Advancing Pagan it's by Venecia Rauls. I've never heard of this author but one can't be too picky when it comes to advanced Pagan books. Especially this Pagan right here. I can't seem to find many books or much of anything at all. I'm only half way through the first chapter (sad isn't it lol) and it already has me thinking about things.

I think, like most people do in their daily lives, I too lack a certain level of confidence. You put me in a room alone lit only by a candle and tell me to perform a ritual or spell, you got it. I can handle that no problem. You bring me out in the daylight and ask me if I'm ready to advance on my path. I'll hesitate a little. I know that my knowledge is no where complete, but that's kind of the point isn't it. You never know EVERYTHING that there is to know, especially spiritually. Even coven leaders are still learning as they are teaching others. But I look in myself and I worry, "Am I ready?" I've been conflicting a lot lately with my path. Not so much the "am I sure I'm Pagan?" because that I know wholeheartedly. But more so on the level of, "Am I truly a Pagan in practice?" and that's where I falter some. I don't have a Pantheon, or any specific Deity that I call upon in ritual or life, I only perform spells in extreme rare occasions, and while I usually have every intention of holding a ritual something always comes up. So where does that leave me. I'm not sure that leaves me any where near where I need to be to advance to the next level. But I feel like I'm suffocating in the first level. So I find myself drifting in limbo. I know that in order to advance I don't need a specific pantheon of diety. Those come when the time is right. So I'm not too worried about that, at least not much. And spells come and go as you need them, at least that's my opinion. And while I need changes in my life, I find myself wanting to change it on my own and not ask the universe or the divine to grant me the will or help to do it. I feel wrong asking for help. Probably because I'm a stubborn mule who is beyond independent. Or if you're into psychiatry you could blame pride too >_< . For that I blame my father lol. But either way it brings my experience in performing spells down to a small minimum. However, I could write a spell with no problem. I have tons written in my little book. Just never performed. And this brings us to ritual. Everyone does things differently. Formal rituals, informal rituals, just lighting a candle and holding a conversation, everyone has their own unique style. If another person does their thing and follows their path then that is amazing and I will support them 110% and back you up in a court of law if I have to. But for me, for some reason I feel the need to have an actual ritual. When I say that I mean write it down, have an offering, call the quarters, invoke the Goddess and God, cast a circle, have a story about the Sabbat, the whole shabang (obviously not in that order though). But I find it hard to conduct ritual unless I stay up until 2 am and everyone else in the house has gone to sleep. So on most nights I find myself already asleep before the time everyone else is, and I feel terrible setting my alarm and waking up to do a ritual while I'm still half asleep (not to mention have work a few hours from then too). So when all is said and done. Is it possible for me to even think of advancing to a new level? I don't know. There is just so much to really think about. I will most certainly continue reading the book. And maybe I'll find my answers and my confidence along the way. And if not, maybe it will encourage me to make the changes that I personally feel I need in order to view myself as worthy of advancing to the next level. If not, I've been going back and thinking about starting from scratch. Rereading my old books, retaking notes, and starting from square one. Maybe doing that could help. Does any of this make me less of a Pagan? Not performing rituals/spells/having deities. Or does it just make me less of a Wiccan? Sometimes, I feel like it does. And I know I shouldn't feel that way, because as long as I believe what I believe in my heart then that is all that matters. But I can't help it. I feel like not having these having these things on a proper basis is like a Christian not going to church. No offense meant by the reference, but if you don't "practice what you preach" then who are you really? In this case, who am I?

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Guess who's alive and kickin'?

Wow, It's January. I can't remember the last time I posted but I know it's been an awful long while. Life is been so overwhelming. And I let myself succumb to it for a while. But now, I think I'm ready to kick off my boots and start kicking some ass. I have to find a way to live my life and accept what's being thrown at me as well. Working two jobs resulting in pretty much 12 hour days back to back to back with maybe one day completely off from both (Goddess willing on rare occasions) or just having to work only one job for one or two days instead of both can take a girl off her feet!! SHEW! It's a bit ridiculous. And at the same time I'm still job hunting for something that falls in the career field of my B.A. degree. ATTENTION: If you are going to school and even remotely thinking about majoring in something non practical like, oh say, Political Science (like I did) or maybe Journalism (Like Jenn, my Best) or even Elementary Education (Like Shelby, my other Best) rethink it. The three of us have been applying to places all over and cannot for the life of us land ANYTHING! Crazy right? All that money for nothing. This is not to discourage anyone, however, if you live in southern VA it's not a good idea. Check your local job market and talk to someone fresh out of college. On another note.I've read some interesting books in the bit that I've been gone. I think I'll do some reviews on them later. It'll give me something to type about and I'll feel like I'm doing something as well instead of being a blob and sleeping during my time off. Since I can't craft much anymore I figure typing and reading allow me the little bit of sanity I need to survive. Speaking of insanity. I have to go to work in about ten minutes. I'll be home after 6:30 or so. Today's my short day. mmmmm, short day. Tasty! I have a few witchy things that I've been throwing around in my head that I want to get out, and I think the only way I can do it is if I blog about them. So you'll be in for a treat. Well, I'll be in for a treat more so. lol. It's be a nice release. Wish me luck today!