Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Obligatory Birthday Blog

So I leveled up. At work they kept saying "oh, now you're finally 21!" They said it so much that when I got home on Wednesday last week I was actually a little confused and had to think "how old am I really?" Well I'm 33. The age Jesus was when he died. The composite of 3 eleven year olds. Not a bad age really. And besides. I don't really care much about age. What I care about is the party that sometimes accompanies the 'aging' process. I had very nice birthday. On the day of, my work decorated my cubicle and chair with confetti, streamers, balloons, and signs that said: Happy Birthday Amanda!! And my two bosses spoiled me with gifts. They gave me a Grumpy Cat coloring book, a package of colored pencils, a giant writing prompts book, and a quill ball-point-pen. It made me feel so very special. And at Dungeons and Dragons one of the players gave me a package of M&Ms wrapped up tight with packing paper. On the paper it said, "Happy Birthday Lars  Amanda" which was adorable. I really enjoy my D&D time with the boys. Even though most of our characters just about died during the previous encounter (fucking spiders and fucking Drow) it was really great way to spend lunch time on my birthday. 

My Friday party was nice. I felt bad that we didn't do it in the club house - not that we really could have since our Apartment management team sort of said "We're out and about so come and find us for the key," on the day of our reservation. It was a very full house and a bit cramped. And one guest in particular was sort of antagonizing, but it turned out very nice and I'm excited to do some more painting in the near future. 

My twins from Moscow came up for the party. They stayed with us through the weekend and played Coven with us on Saturday. I really enjoy that game. It's very bizarre and you really don't know who's going to win until the game is over you do the maths required to suss out the winning Witch. The more we play the easier it will be to teach other's to play. I can't deny that I'm slightly curious about the game expansion called Coven the Village. From what I've read about it, this expansion gives you plot to the otherwise stream of consciousness type game play. 

On a personal note: I really truly cannot believe that summer is over. I didn't really do anything for Mabon and I feel like crap about it. I've never celebrated Mabon! And it makes no sense to me. It's my birthday Sabbat for goddess sake! But then again, I think that perhaps I've always celebrated it, just not in the traditional ways. I've always had treats and gifts and songs and fun. I've always spent Mabon with friends. All of my Mabon'ing' has been experienced through my birthday celebrations. That makes me feel a little better but next year, I think I'll skip a traditional birthday and seek a true second harvest celebration and spend an entire day in the balance of light and dark. Hannah got me David Bowie's last album and a book about Elen of the Ways. Perfect birthday gifts. Maybe next year I'll let Elen be my birthday goddess and guide and we'll take the celebration out into the woods and fields. Maybe we'll follow the deer trods as I level up to 34. 

Saturday, September 17, 2016

The 'Now' and a New Challenge for October

Right now Hannah and Tsuki are watching a J-drama in the living room. It's called Good Morning Call and while I'm not really following the show much it's really interesting listening to Hannah and Tsuki bitching out the main characters, chiding them, and squealing over them. Fan-girls are so cute. 

Right now Narcisa is asleep in the Bowie room. She and I have been working on laundry for the past couple of hours but right now she's curled up on a chair snoozing to the sounds of Swedish Folk Fiddling via my phonograph. 

Right now I'm waiting for one load to finish drying and another to finish washing. Right now I'm so freaking tired.

Yesterday Hannah and I celebrated my dad's birthday. I made him a passport with five different locations on it and I tasked my father with putting 'something' from each place into his passport as a keepsake. First was Scandinavia. We went to Little Euro and had crepes and Aebelskivers and egg Florentine. It was all very delicious. Next we went to Japan (a.k.a the Nishinomiya Japanese Garden in Manito Park). It was a slight disappointment because the lawn maintenance guys were mowing and weed eating so it wasn't exactly as tranquil and meditative at the Japanese gardens are supposed to be, but overall it was a great experience. And the koi fish were adorable. After that we went to India. This one was a bit of a stretch; I had them ride the tiger (or sit next to the tiger) on the Looff Carousel downtown. Mom and dad had a good time I think. Hannah rode the tiger side-saddle and I rode the horse in front of her. Next we fed the trash goat. We have a statue outside the Carousel house, it's a metal statue of a goat with a button next to it. When pushed, the button triggers a very strong suction at the goat's mouth and the idea is that you hold up trash and the goat sucks it up and eats it. Dad and I fed the goat pieces of Inlander and other trash and then we helped a young boy and his dad feed the goat. 

These activities didn't take as long as I'd planned. The next stop was supposed to be Germany but we weren't hungry enough for dinner yet so we stopped at a Starbucks for some coffee and chill time and then went to JoAnn's to see all the things. I love their skeleton collection (cats, dogs, rats, vultures, etc.). I can't wait until Hannah and I have a real house and can deck it from top to bottom with everything Halloween. After JoAnn's we went to Das Stein Haus. It was a little different than the first time I was there but it was still good. Everyone enjoyed their food but I did learn to go during the week Mon-Thurs for the best deals. I'm keeping that in mind for the future. After Germany we were supposed to go and see a movie but mom and dad were pretty tuckered out so they headed home and Hannah and I went grocery shopping. We went a little crazy but dang we are set. Our fridge is totally stocked and we have all the fixings for some fun meals this month. 

Back to now: Hannah made fresh bread from scratch. As soon as the butter softens, we will be consuming a slice of the freshness. 

And now, looking ahead I'm thinking about working on a spell challenge for October. A friend linked me a 'spell a day' writing challenge a long time ago and I was looking through it and decided that it sounded promising for October, however I'm not going to try to write 31 spells in one month. What I'm going to do instead is make a list of fifteen spell prompts for the month of October and pull every other day. It will go like this: Day 1 - pull a prompt and write a spell. Day 2 - find/create a sacred space and perform the spell (with others or solitary, your choice). Day 3 - pull a promt and write a spell. Day 4 - perform that spell. And so on and so forth. However that leaves one odd day at the end of the month: October 31. For that day I'm going to reflect on how the spells that I've woven and worked during the month have seemed to influence my state of being or the course of events. So, for now this is the project plan. I think it would be a great way to tap into creativity and spirituality just in time for Witche's New Year. 

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Weekend To-Do, Sick, Preparing for Halloween

August was so incredibly busy. The second September began I tried to apply the breaks but things just seemed to speed up even more. I put together a party for Hannah's graduation and it was a screaming success. Damn I am a such a stress case though. I was on the verge of panic for the first two hours or so of prep and getting the party started. Thank you to my humans who helped so that I could relax a little. Overall it was so nice though. A nice start to the mass of parties we are going to be having as we slip into a Autumn full of celebration. We'll be attending as well as throwing Halloween parties, pulling together for full and new moons, and even tossing in a few birthdays.

First thing's first though: I need to get some things in order. For this weekend I have a very small but very 'must do' list. This has become slightly more complicated however since I'm also sick. I didn't go to work today or yesterday. I was so out of it this morning I couldn't even call work to let them know. My supervisor called me. I will have to apologize extensively on Sunday but this year has been horrible for my immune system. I thought I would be doing better since being exposed to new germs via bus riding but that doesn't seem to be the case. Seasonal changes have always been hard for me, but my lungs and sinuses aren't even following the seasonal schedule lately. They just sort of say 'fuck it' whenever they please and suddenly I'm wiped out.

So, that being said. I'm going to try and accomplish a few things amidst getting lots of rest and drinking lots of fluids. Firstly, I want to make a few smudge sticks for Halloween. That should be fun and totally easy since I can do it sitting at the kitchen table. Secondly, I need to read over, edit, solidify and resend out my short story to various places. Thirdly, I need to decide exactly what I'm going to submit for the Inkshares contest and make a plan to have that done and submitted by next weekend. Fourthly, I need to get the laundry under control. (The last one would be easier if my lungs weren't burning but we can't always have it the way we want it, can we?)

As we move into fall and Witch's New Years, Hannah and I look forward to hosting a Halloween party. We're working on the theme today. We are so geared up and ready for Halloween - our house is already decked out with spooky wall decor and cute/creepy figures on the mantel. I've got four pumpkins growing. Two will be for cooking and the other two will be mainly for show. I had hoped to have more but I'm happy that I seem to be growing anything. It's my first time doing any serious gardening and I've been quite happy with my yield. Even if it's meager.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

A sequential list of Tarot and Divination decks used during August

Day 1: Angelarium Deck -- Da'at (Emptiness) -- My deck, self purchase

Day 2: Black Cat Tarot -- Seven of Coins/Pentacles & Eight of Coins/Pentacles -- Hannah's deck, gift from me

Day 3: Gothic Tarot -- Two of Wands -- Hannah's deck, gift from the Twins

Day 4: Oceanic Tarot -- Three of Pentacles /Coins -- Fiona's deck

Day 5: The Manga Tarot -- Seven of Pentacles/Coins -- Twin A's deck

Day 6: Legend: Arthurian Tarot -- Six of Spears/Wands -- Twin B's deck

Day 7: Lover's Path Tarot -- Three of Pentacles/Coins & The Fool -- My deck, self purchase

Day 8: Gay Tarot -- The Fool -- My deck, self chosen (free)

Day 9: Oracle of Shadows and Light -- Mermaid of the Eclipse -- Hannah's and my deck, gift from Fiona

Day 10: Tarot of the Witches -- Nine of Swords -- Hannah's deck, gift from friend

Day 11: Royo Dark Tarot --- Knave of Chalices/Cups --- My deck, gift from Twins

Day 12: The Faeries Oracle --- Geeeeeooo the Slooow --- Chris's deck, I found it for her; her purchase

Day 13: The Tarot of the Vampyres --- Two of Scepters/Wands --- My and Hannah's deck, self bought

Day 14: Fantastical Creatures Tarot --- Six of Pentacles/Coins --- My and Hannah's deck, self bought

Day 15: Ancestral Path Tarot --- Three of Sacred Circles/Coins --- Friend Chris's deck

Day 16: Forest Folklore Tarot --- Eight of Wands --- My deck, self purchased

Day 17: The Magical Menagerie --- Crane --- My deck, self purchased 

Day 18: The Well Worn Path --- The Rede --- Belongs to Hannah and I but I have no idea when or how we acquired it

Day 19: Mystical Cats Tarot --- Fire King (King of Wands) --- Hannah's and my deck, gift from friend's daughter

Day 20: The Stone Tarot --- Eight of Wands --- Hannah's deck, a gift to her from me
Day 21: Wisdom of the Hidden Realms --- Sun Dancers (abundance) --- Hannah's and my deck, gift from Fiona

Day 22: Dark Fairytale Tarot --- Knave/Page of Cups --- Chris's Deck, self bought

Day 23: Shadowscapes Tarot --- Queen of Pentacles --- Hannah's and my deck, self purchased

Day 24: Deviant Moon Tarot --- Two of Pentacles --- Fiona's deck, self bought

Day 25: The Witches Tarot --- The Empress --- Hannah's deck, gift from me
Day 26: The Mucha Tarot --- Queen of Wands --- Twins' deck, gift from Hannah and me
Day 27 --- Phantasmogoric Theater Tarot --- The Hermit --- Fiona's deck, self bought

Day 28: Cachet Tarot --- Page of Swords --- A friend's deck, not sure how she came by it
Day 29: The Bohemian Animal Tarot --- The Suspended/Hanged Man --- Fiona's deck, self purchased

Day 30: Tarot of a Moon Garden --- Six of Swords --- Fiona's deck, self purchased

Day 31: The Halloween Oracle --- Skull of Flowers --- My deck, gift from Hannah
In looking at my Tarot draws I had quite a few doubles and even one triple for the month of August. Below is a chard divided by Major/minor Arcana and suits.

The Fool (twice)
The Empress
The Hermit 
The Hanged Man

Page of Cups (twice)

Six of Swords 
Nine of Swords
Page of Swords

Two of Wands (twice)
Six of Wands 
Eight of Wands (twice)
Queen of Wands
King of Wands

Two of Pentacles
Three of Pentacles (thrice)
Six of Pentacles
Seven of Pentacles (twice)
Eight of Pentacles
Queen of Pentacles

For this past month I was very pentacle heavy. While I am an Earth sign I rarely get pentacles in readings. To have so many show up this month was really interesting. Also it was strange that I only drew one Cup card and drew it twice. I find it all very fascinating to see what I've drawn and how all the draws work together to form a sort of over arching message. Definitely something to think about as I prepare to face the world of September and Autumn and my Birthday.