Webs of Woven Words, Threads, Stitches and Enchantments

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

In The Garden At Toadstool Condo

We have mushrooms in the garden at Toadstool Condo! Actually, we found them under the hedge along the walkway. They are the tiniest mushrooms I've ever seen in the wild, as you can see. They are pure white, very round and have a tall stalk. This is the mushroom forest - quite pretty. No luck yet identifying them, although I browsed quickly through my mushroom field guide and two other old picture books. And here is Ms. Nips, our resident squirrel. I was watching her as she tried to scare off the ducks and egrets and noticed how much bigger she's grown. Well, then, as she ate a cashew, I could see that the reason for that is she's pregnant! Baby squirrels on the way! Ms. Nips will come up to the walkway, but if we try to get near her she runs away - as it should be. She will wait nearby though for bits of bread, sunflower seeds and nuts. She also likes the duck scratch we put out for our duck families.

Tonight I will be celebrating the Autumn Equinox with a ritual of course. Here is an excerpt from one of the invocations which is adapted from a ritual by Stormwing:

The Wheel of the Year turns on and on,
What will be is, what was will be.
In this moment, between time,
I come to praise the bountiful, aging Goddess.
I give thanks and feel myself as a part of the
Relentless turning Wheel of Life, Death and Rebirth.
O Blessed Demeter, Lady of the Harvest,
Be with me here and witness my Rite.
Grant me strength and understanding
Throughout this season and always!
O Blessed Persephone, Queen of the Underworld,
Be with me here and witness my Rite.
Let me understand the changes, the mysteries
Of Life, Death and Rebirth.
O Great & Blessed Hekate of the Crossroads,
Be with me here and witness my Rite.
Teach me the secrets of Your Mysteries,
The ways of magic and knowing.
The time of change is upon us again,
The Equinox comes, the Wheel turns.
May I see and feel the presence of the Goddess within,
Though without, the Earth begins Her slumber.

May your harvest be abundant! Blessings Nine!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Autumn Blessings!

...that country where it is always turning late in the year. That country where the hills are fog and the rivers are mist; where noons go quickly, dusks and twilights linger, and midnights stay. That country composed in the main of cellars, sub-cellars, coal-bins, closets, attics, and pantries faced away from the sun. That country whose people are autumn people, thinking only autumn thoughts. Whose people, passing at night on the empty walks, sound like rain... -Ray Bradbury

'Best I love September's yellow,
Morns of dew-strung gossamer,
Thoughtful days without a stir,
Rooky clamours, brazen leaves.
Stubble dotted o'er with sheaves ~
Morre than Spring's bright uncontrol
Suit the Autumn of my soul.'

~ Alex. Smith

"When the goldenrod is yellow
And leaves are turning brown -
Reluctantly the summer goes
In a cloud of thistledown.

When squirrels are harvesting
And birds in flight appear -
By these autumn signs we know
September days are here."

Beverly Ashour, September

The Autumn Equinox, which arrives Tuesday, September 22, 2009 at 5: 19 PM EST, is a time when day and night are equal, a time of balance. I pay respects to the approaching darkness and the waning light as I consider my personal harvests; this is a time of turning inward and personal reflection. I gather thoughts about what I have accomplished and what plans and needs I have for the coming year. The wheel turns and the nights grow longer. I remember the Goddess as she passes from Mother to Crone, Persephone, as She hears the calls of the dead. I give honor to my deities and the spirits of the Land around me. The Autumn Equinox or Mabon is another step on the path of the Mysteries.

This is the Witches' Thanksgiving, so I celebrate, remember, feast and make offerings. I have much to be thankful for.

May your harvests be rewarding, fulfilling and abundant. Blessings nine!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Stitches, Pincushions & the Full Moon!

The weekend is ending too soon for me! On Saturday evening a few friends joined me for my Eleusinian Full Moon ritual. This was a simple ritual to honor Persephone, Demeter and Hekate, of course. We journeyed, divined and then took offerings to the lake and hedge circle; afterwards coffee and dessert and good conversation. A lovely evening.

I finished my Strawberry House sampler by Little House Needleworks this evening, so, I must decide: frame or little cushion? Decisions, decisions. Now back to my mother's nativity and Salem Remembered. Sampler Sisters of the Thread awaits and oh, yes I want to start it right now!!! No, no I can't - the nativity, the nativity - I must stitch the nativity!!! There, that's enough of that.
Oh the stresses of a stitcher with so many enchanting things to stitch.

Now, look at this adorable pincushion, a birthday gift from my friend Debbie! She will tell you that she is craft-challenged, but I will disagree - she created a superior design! I love this pincushion which she made in a real cast iron cauldron! A perfect gift for a witch, but then, takes one to know one, yes?

I have made a few pincushions over the years for fellow stitchers and friends - and of course myself - one in an old depression glass dessert cup, embellished with antique lace scraps among other things. So much can be done with them, adding all sorts of little embellishments - beads, ribbons, charms and anything else one can think of; sew it on, glue it on, whatever. I have a lovely book by Jo Packham, Making Fabulous Pincushions, which has inspired me. The pincushions in this book are to die for - exquisite! I should make a few more. Oh yes, why not, I need another project!

I have discovered WCPE, TheClassicalStation.org - oh wonderful, wonderful selection of classical music with a daily listing of what is being played at what time. I love that so I can find new recordings to add to my collection. Probably everyone else already knows about it, but I didn't.

Such a lovely evening; sipping tea, browsing the pincushion book, listening to good music, life is good.... until.... tomorrow, 9:00AM and back to.............. roller sets!!! Did I mention I started beauty school a couple of weeks ago? At age 53? Yes, I did this and, challenging, but really OK. I like roller sets, especially now that I have the technique down - there is a certain secret for keeping those rollers just as they ought to be. I was going crazy until, finally, it all came together! Rolling hair is sort of like creating a zen garden, in a way, peaceful, quiet, providing the rollers do what one wants them to. My teacher is this wonderful, manic Latin woman, very talented and she keeps us laughing all day. If one of us becomes stressed or worried, she asks, "did I say you had to worry? No, so don't worry. Let me es'plain (heavy accent al-la Ricky Ricardo - really!) something to you, I'll let you know when you have to worry, so don't worry."

Blessings nine!