Wednesday, August 31, 2011

With the End of August comes...

The first real feel of fall.

The weather in Idaho is fickle at the best of times, and this summer has boasted well above the normal high for several weeks... staying in the high 90's to low 100's consistently. Today though... Today was beautiful. I awoke to a crisp breeze in the air- the North-Western Winds are making their presence known, and with them comes the feel of fall and the inner knowing that before too much longer it will be time to take to wearing jeans and long shirts and hoodies when setting out, while watching the beauty of the leaves as they turn and gentle way in which Gaia begins to to settle into the quiet hush of early darkness and preparation for the winter ahead. While packing away my summer things makes me sad, as I know with it comes the bitter cold of this area, I must confess that I look forward to the subtle change of fall and starting the morning out cool with a gradual warming to a comfortable level instead of a searing heat.

How is it where everyone else is at?

Don't worry, by Yule I'll be bitching about the cold and bitter wind storms we get and praying for the searing heat again. =)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Amish Country Love

Well, it's taken me a bit longer to write this particular entry than I was hoping, but better late than never right?!

Early this month, the family and I went to Philadelphia, PA to visit with all my husbands family and friends. We were there for a week and did a lot of things, but the days that stand out most to me are the ones we spent in Amish Country. I've been out to PA several times in the five years we've been married, but never had we traveled into Lancaster County, which houses areas like Ronks, Strasburg, and Intercourse (yes- that is truly the name... I'm also told there are others, 5 total I think, like Blue Ball), Pennsylvania. I digress... We spent a lot of time out there, and several separate day trips. We enjoyed the local cooking, and visited an Amish Village. My favorite though- the Quilt Shops. I had never taken a true interest in quilts. I find  the nice looking, and something I certainly don't have the patience to do myself. However, walking through the shops and looking at the pieces don't completely by hand... not the machine made knockoffs we have out here... has changed my opinion on a large scale. I originally set off on my adventure to find a quilt for my mom, who has always had a fondness for them and has purchased several from antique stores. I want to find a nice throw sized quilt for her... something to snuggle under with a good book during some down time. This is the one I found for her-
This quilt spoke to me in so many ways. This was the ONLY quilt I found in the store with this material and pattern.. really, I was dumbstruck by the beauty and feel of it. After finding this one and deciding to go with it, I looked through the stores section for king size quilts (as I have a king size bed!) I wasn't looking to buy, but I wanted to see. Apparently that nice Mennonite woman who made the quilt I picked for mom has designs and energy that speak to me and resonate within me, as every quilt I picked out was one she had made. Mom's quilt was purchased the first time we went to the Quilt shop, and that night I dreamt of mom's quilt and a king size one I had also looked at... In the end, I did pick a king size quilt and bought it (the one that was in my dream), only to have my mother-in-law give me a check for it as a happy graduation, anniversary, and merry Christmas present. Due to it's size, we had it shipped here, and boy let me tell you how excited I was the day it arrived!
Isn't she beautiful?? The "name" (of the design) on her tag was Hailey's Comet. There is a comfort to crawling into bed at night and feeling the weight of this quilt cocoon my body and keep me warm. I now have plans to buy a new quilt every year when we go back to PA. I think, should the other king size quilt I found and also love not be there, I will get a nice queen size quilt for our guest bedroom. Jae will get one as well... when she's a few years older. =)

There is a magic to these quilts... the love and energy put into them by the designers is a tangible thing. I would highly suggest a trip to Amish Country if you find yourself back east... you may be surprised at the magic you find surrounding your every move.. whether it be in the home style cooking that abounds there, the craftsmanship of all handmade items, or simply in walking through the lush green that rules the area. It is well worth the trip for the soothing calm it gives the soul.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Simple Magics

While I have many things to write about, I would like to tell you a story of some simple magic that happened this past weekend....

My house is currently under going a face lift.. the entire fence is being replaced. With having four dogs, that ensures a lot of walks. Over the weekend, my hubby and I would each take a dog and walk them, and Jaelynn, to the grassy ball park just down the road. Three sides of it are fenced in, so we can take them down to the far end and let them off the leash to run. On our way, Jae likes to pick a small flower to play with. On this particular trip, she decided to leave the flower for Gaia as we left the park to go home. She very deliberately put the flower in the grass and left it there. Later that afternoon, when we took the first round of dogs back to the park, we stepped into the park to discover that there were wild patches of flowers everywhere! As we had been using the park routinely for sometime, I can say with certainty that there had never been flowers there before. EVER. I can't even begin to tell you how thrilled Jaelynn was that all her flowers were there. I told her that Gaia must have loved her gift and decided that the park needed more flowers. Every time we've gone back since, there have been flowers there for Jae to play with. And every time we go, she picks two... one for her altar and one to leave at the base of the tree she likes at the park.

Let us never forget the beauty of simple magic...

Saturday, August 6, 2011

What am I?

Well, let me start by telling you what I'm not.. I'm not any one thing. =)

So, I got to thinking tonight (in the shower of course... my place of deep thought!) about titles and labels and how they apply to the path. Every now and again I get that question... you know.. the whole "what religion are you" question. The question doesn't bother me, but the lack of clarity to the answer. My standard answer for the general public is "Pagan", for those that know me better, I will normally tell them I am a Witch or a Goddess Follower. But, the more I think about it, the more I realize just how inadequate all those answers are. The term Pagan, much like the term Christian, is an umbrella term that covers a wide variety of paths and beliefs. Granted, there is a lot more diversity in the pagan scheme of things, but you get the drift! Many people seem to not understand the diversity of that term, and automatically associate it with Wicca. Now, I'm not hating on Wicca, in fact, I follow the Wicca wheel of the year, as well as many other practices. BUT, I'm not a Wiccan. I've used the term eclectic in the past, as that was the only thing I could seem to "fit" into, but I'm learned that the term doesn't suit me.

Now, you're probably wondering why titles and names or whatever mean so much to me... well, to be honest, I'm not sure I can tell you why.... I suppose the need to self express without having to need a prepared speech is always nice...

At any rate... so, I've been thinking and pondering and reviewing my spirituality... all I have been, from what I came from, to everything I am now and the continuing new experiences and places I go. I am Witch, Buddhist, Goddess Worshiper, Naturalist, Druid... There really are a lot of "names" that I fall under, but the need to simplify it is a strong urge for me. All that being said, the only term I can think of is one that has already been coined...


Now this word has several meanings, but the definition most commonly associated with it is this: "One who believes in direct intercourse with departed spirits, through the agency of persons commonly called mediums, by means of physical phenomena; one who attempts to maintain such intercourse; a spiritist." (Online dictionary). It doesn't seem to matter what medium (forgive the pun) that I plug that word into, but every search comes back with things about contacting the dead.... interesting, but not what I'm going for here.

So, here is my new meaning for the word SPIRITUALIST...

One who believes in the cultivation of a relationship with the divine or beliefs (in the instance that no divinity is believed in) and does what what is most fulfilling for the spirit and self, without harming anyone; and brings inner peace while promoting peaceful cohabitation with all walks of life.

I've changed my mind. I am one thing- I am a Spiritualist!!

Now, I bid you all good night so I can go finish my tea and head to bed!

Blessing to you all!

"Believe nothing merely because you have been told it. Do not believe what your teacher tells you merely out of respect for the teacher. But whatsoever, after due examination and analysis, you find to be kind, conducive to the good, the benefit, the welfare of all beings -- that doctrine believe and cling to, and take it as your guide." The Buddha