The Time of Growth and Opportunities.

Here in West Central Wisconsin the winter has been particularly long and extra cold. The Earth has slumbered beneath a blanket of snow and She has dreamed of burgeoning new growth of a Spring that at times seemed too far away. For those of us up here in the northern states, Spring doesn’t burst forth with a plethora of blossoms and greenery. That comes later in the season for us. Spring for us, means that the Mighty Mississippi begins to melt. The eagles come to feast upon fish that froze in the thick winter ice, and the ice fishing shacks are hauled away until next year when thick ice returns once more. The wild life begins rummaging about in search of tender greens that the melting snow has revealed, and the humans of the region are welcoming spring with a shedding of a few layers of clothing as we emerge from our homes to soak up some much needed fresh air and sunshine. Clearly the time of awakening and growth has come.

Thoughts of a garden pluck away in the back of my thoughts, as well as the anticipation of the chance to participate in the local community garden. My hunger to be in the woods, and connect with the spirits of this land through the trees as sap loosens and begins to flow through tree trunks once more, and shoots of green begin to creep up through the leaf litter to greet the growing sunshine. My hunger to learn of plant medicine, and edible wild foods plucks at my spirit as I look out to the bluffs, and towards the prairie.

In my world this season of growth and awakening has begun with a long overdue Initiation Ritual, and things have blossomed since. Already I feel a deepening connection to my spirituality. I find myself seeking to know more about the gods of my Viking ancestors and seeking out connections between the goddesses of the Norse traditions with the goddesses that I’ve always felt a connection with. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not attempting to skip and hop from pantheon to pantheon; but if there is a connection then there are ways in which I can build some deeper relationships with my ancestral connections while maintaining the connections I already have. I find myself looking for signs of what I should be doing next, and then as I’m riding with my sister to go see my mother two coyotes run across the highway in broad daylight. A sign to get moving. This is my time to “do the do,” and I hadn’t been. The next day, I smudged and did an impromptu house blessing, because I felt compelled to, and then an opportunity came…the sign I was looking for.

I’ve been chatting on and off with a Facebook friend who is a Master Herbalist and Naturopath. She offers a variety of educational opportunities through online correspondence and live courses, up to and including (insert my dreamy eyed longing here), a Master Herbalist Program that is the real deal. It’s my dream, but really at this point I’m excited at the thought of any herbalism education opportunities. I just can’t generally afford the formal programs. We had been talking about this conundrum, and had left it at…when the time was right, I would know and somehow find a way to make it happen. We none the less seem to have a connection that goes further than being Facebook friends.

A few hours after I did my smudging and blessing of the house, she sent me an Facebook message explaining that she was writing up a “want ad” in search of a couple of folks interested in working as intern assistants and thought that I might be interested in the opportunity as the exchange for the internship was credits towards course tuition. Well, you don’t have to smack me upside the head and tell me I’m a nettle lover to see where this is going. I submitted my letter of interest as soon as the want ads went public, and you are now looking at the Editorial/Personal Assistant at Green Wisdom! This to me is the most amazing opportunity to work with a wonderful wise woman, and be a part of something bigger than my own little circle of the world. It also gives me the opportunity to start pursuing a passion, that I can be truly proud of as a mother, as a woman, and as a pagan. I am ecstatic!!

Other opportunities have popped up as well. My beaded necklaces will be returning to the co-op where I used to work, and some new ideas for beading and jewelry have poked their heads through the stagnation of my own spiritual winter. This spring has growth in abundance, and blessings to be had if we are willing to reach for the sky as the eagles pick fish from the ice melt, and the rivers surge to life after this long season of slumber.

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Breaking Writer’s Block and Empowering My Children.

There it goes again. That blank spot that was once an idea for a blog post. That brief moment of distraction just long enough for me to lose the flow of words that were only a few short hours ago percolating in my preoccupied mind as I scramble around looking for something to fix the kiddos for lunch, hunt for a diaper, and scold the dog for barking at every single person who just happens to be walking down the sidewalk today.

It’s been a while, a long while since I’ve tried to come up with a post. I think about it, admonish myself for not having written a post sooner, ponder on what to write, and finally I had something. So today, I finally had a blogging idea that seemed worthy of sharing, and now it’s gone. Let’s see if sitting here typing as I watch my beautiful daughter doze off in her high chair will jog loose those rusty creative gears long enough to come up with something inviting, inspiring, and indeed a break in the long fog of my absence as a blogger.

This business of being a witch, it has a few quirks for me at times. Introducing my children to paganism outside of the things that come most naturally such as spending time in the woods, has been a question to me. At what age will they sit long enough to really process the concepts and teachings enough to make them their own?

I know there are many folks within the pagan community who believe that spirituality should be something that a person explores as an adult rather than have been raised within a certain tradition. I had once felt that I was open to the children being given the ideologies of nearly any faith. While I would like them to know about all faiths on an academic level, I intend to raise them within the spirals of my own spiritual path. My sons are now at an age where they are fairly well ready to begin learning about paganism with some degree of understanding as opposed to following along because, “This is what we do.”

A couple of weeks ago, my oldest son shared with me that he had watched something that really frightened him, and it struck up a conversation between us about what I believed in. I speak fairly candidly with my sons about anything they have questions about, especially if it has something to do with a pagan concept, or a misconception that they’ve been exposed to. Teaching moments are a commodity that I’d not trade for the world with my kids. It feels as though the time in which they are receptive to what I have to share with them is limited. Soon enough they will be eager to venture out on their own to find out what’s there and what I have to offer will hold less if any value to them.

This teaching moment with my bright eyed almost 8 year old opened my eyes to a need that wasn’t being met; an understanding that while I have tried to infuse it into his brilliant little inquisitive mind, he needed something more. He and his brother really needed something tangible to help them understand that Goddess is within us all and we are all a part of her. I found that tangible lesson within Oberon Zell’s Millennium Gaia.

She’s sat upon my altar for 14 years, a gift from my first mentor, an amazing representation of the living Goddess and her interconnectedness to all life. I gently pulled her down from the altar in my kitchen, and fussed briefly over a couple of spots in which many trips moving and being jostled around has caused her damage that I’d not noticed until that moment. I called my sons into the kitchen to sit at the table with me and really took some time to look her over.

I asked the boys to look at her legs and tell me what they saw. At first the clever little monkeys both said, “Wow, she has a lot of tattoos.” I laughed and the asked them to look harder. Pointing out the images of marine life both prehistoric and contemporary that adorns the length and girth of each leg. I turned her so that they could look at what made up Her glorius mane, leaves, vines, DNA strands, and asked them what they saw. Entangled in her hair are animals, insects and on the very top, where her crown chakra could be found a tiny human child with the world in its hands. We talked about each of these things. They gently traced their fingers around sharks, lions, dinosaurs and dragonflies as we discussed that She was a part of all life, and that we are all a part of her. Mind you, I am not Dianic by any means, this was however a lesson that I’ve been working toward instilling into my children since they were old enough to go traipsing off into the woods with me. I don’t think they really grasped it, until they were able to see exactly what I was trying to say. It was too big, and this symbol of Goddess so beautifully created finally offered an imagery that they could wrap their heads around and think about.

This opportunity hasn’t slipped by without further contemplation. We’ve done a few small things, that really aren’t so small. A dream catcher hung above their bed to capture the bad dreams and let in the good ones was in order, and a tiny statue of Bast now sits in their room as a protector from all things scary, and introductions to the Gods and Goddesses are being made to the oldest boy with books from the library that give him a taste for some of the pantheons of ancient times. Currently, he’s learning about Egytian pantheons, which is fitting given the introduction of Bast to their bed room and the close affinity my husband has for all things Egyptian.

This Winter Solstice will find their stockings hung and stuffed with goodies, toys will be tucked under the tree as you might find under any other tree at this time of year, but along with the toys and games my guys will find their first books introducing them to pagan concepts and ideologies. I am incredibly excited to watch them explore earth centered spirituality with tools that are geared specifically to engage their minds and imaginations. I am excited to hear their thoughts and ideas about what they read and explore. I am excited to see these beautiful souls become empowered with their own sense of connection and magick.

Writer’s Block broken, Blessed be to you all, and have a beautiful Solstice.

Abundance and Welcome to my Blog

“Doing what you love is the cornerstone of having abundance in your life.” -Wayne Dyer

One of the challenges that has been posed to me, during the course of my evening escapes to commune with one of my best friends and spiritual sister, has been to offer up some examples of abundance in my life. At the time, I was able to come up with a few areas that were “good enough” examples for a point in my life in which everything seemed like a struggle. I don’t think at that time though, I really had felt that spiritual connection to abundance and how it could really manifest in my life. Recently, I would have to say, that’s changed. Hold on to your knickers, this gets very exciting for me.

About a week ago, a friend of mine created an event on Facebook. She’s a rather savvy person when it comes to how she chooses to utilize that social media monster, putting it’s potentially radical powers of letting everyone know your every move to good use as a way to organize and build some community among her friends, whom all happen to be interested in some form of gardening. Being a fairly wise earth goddess in her own right, this event was designed as a way that her friends could meet each other, and make use of some extra seedlings that didn’t really fit in the garden. Mostly, she didn’t want to see her gorgeous new tomato seedlings come to a bitter end after having nurtured them from seed to transplant stage. Who can blame her? It takes a lot of work and an equal amount of love to nurture something so fragile from the very beginnings of life, not to mention the waste of perfectly good tomato producing potential.

Being fairly new and sort of clumsy with gardening, I’ve pestered her from time to time for advice, resulting (to my joy) inclusion in her gardening group, and also an invitation to this seedling swap. Now, to be clear…I’d not planted a single seed this year. My garden is in facts still in the foundational stages due to some financial challenges. I had only just started to sort out how I might create my garden on a budget so tight that the couch is threatening to send in the muscle if I don’t pay back the change I found in the cushions. I accepted the invitation, only after I sent her a private message, weakly confessing that I had nothing to share. I was told to “come anyway and get some tomato plants.”

Shortly after deciding to attend this lovely gathering of women and plants, I wandered outside and started to look around my yard. I didn’t have any seedlings, but I realized I had some rhubarb that I know will spread and populate as much space as it can. It also transplants easily, and was shared with me by a member of my SCA group last year. Maybe, maybe someone would want some of that. Hey! Cool! I looked around a bit more. That yarrow I planted last year, came back. It was also shared with me by the lady I got the rhubarb from. Holy cats, is it ever growing tall and it spread out, a lot. Maybe..maybe someone would like some of that as well. Then I noticed my chocolate mint plants, they were also thriving and spreading like no one’s business, and my lillies, and hostas too! Excited that I did have something to potentially contribute, I rushed back to the computer and offered up these glorious plants that had all returned this spring. I was able to share with this little group of women, some happy rhubarb, some tall and fragrant chocolate mint, and some brilliant orange lillies, in exchange for several tomato plants at least some of which are heirloom varieties, a bleeding heart plant, black-eyed Susans, beans, tarragon, a new fern for between my hostas, and some native irises which will arrive at some point next week.

It gets better, I’ve been really wanting to create an awesome space in my backyard, but finances have been way to tight for me to be able to purchase more than a starter plant here and there this year. All of these gorgeous plants were free. Looking around at what I already have, I could easily thin out my hostas, lillies, and yarrow by spreading them to different spots in my yard. The irises will look great mixed in with the lillies. More free plants! Oh, and there’s a hollyhock growing against the corner of the house, I think it’s multiplied. I think I can move it as well. Then I realized the lilacs really need to be thinned and moved about. More free fragrant flowers! I can also share with my best friend, who would like to increase her lilac population. Abundance, abounds! Yep, it doesn’t take much to make me as happy as, Jack Sparrow with a secret stash of rum and his favorite ship.

Now, I have all these plants, I need some way to create the garden I had hoped for this year. I’d been researching how to do all of this on the cheap. Apparently, the key is to be near a place that throws their pallets out for people to take. I’ve been stalking just such a place. That’s right…stalking, I’ve been stalking that wood pile for over a year now, swearing I was going to somehow find a way to use those pallets. They are now participating in what I am referring to as “Hammer Therapy.” Hammer Therapy is the process of removing the center slats of the pallets, and alleviating my pent up aggression, (of which there is a good bit), by smacking those suckers out with a hammer. It’s a decent work out. It makes me feel empowered and happy; and it provides me with free raised beds for my garden.

Abundance, surrounds me. I find it in the woods these days as I forage for wild foods and medicinal herbs. I find it in the ability to endure that makes my family so resilient. I find it in the sweet delight of uncovering a new piece to our family tree. I find it in the unconditional love and quick forgiveness visible in the depths of the eyes of my children. I find it in the bonds formed between a 4 year old boy as he naps flopped on the couch using a patient and gentle pit bull for a pillow. I find it in my backyard, looking around for a way to fit in, for a way to contribute. It was there, and in recognizing that it is there, it allows me the opportunity to be resourceful in how I work with my surroundings, and with my own ability to create more abundance for myself and the people I love.

Sometimes it takes a bit of resourcefulness to uncover it, or a moment of looking at it from outside the box, but abundance is most assuredly there; and I am truly blessed.

Welcome to my blog. I know, it seems backwards, and at times it will be very much like a conversation with…well, with some one quite unaccustomed to caffeine after a mocha with a triple shot of esspresso. Other times, it will be much more like a walk in the woods, peaceful and soothing. I sort of flow where ever the spirits takes me. I hope you enjoy your visit and return soon.

-Blessed Be!

Touching Heritage, and Finding More of Myself

me-2011Do you wonder where you came from? Or perhaps I should ask, what your connections are to your past? For me, that sense of connection intrigues me. I don’t know, perhaps it is my way of searching for my own sense of belonging. Perhaps, it’s my attempt to make sense of myself. After all, we know that genetics does play a decent part in defining some of our characteristics. Regardless of the reason, I enjoy digging through the various “hints” over on ancestry.com in search of some connection to my ancestors. Where did they come from? When did they make the migration from Europe to the ‘States? Is there a way to find that elusive connection to this land that binds me by blood and heritage to this beautiful land that surrounds me?

The rumors run thick on my maternal grandmother’s side of a Native American connection, but my great grandmother died when my grandmother was still a child and at best I can only guess that her connection to any Native American heritage that’s there was undocumented at best. Finding anything at all about my great grandmother has been the most challenging task. I’ve managed to track down a census that showed that she lived with her step-father at one point. She was married, and my grandmother was three when this census was taken. That’s it; there isn’t anything else I have managed to glean from the available documentation, not even a death certificate that seems right. I am still at this point relying on that deep sense of connection that sings when I hear the rhythm of a tribal drum beat, that tingle that runs through my body calling me home, with a sigh of relief and an excitement that almost moves me to tears. I know it with every fiber of my being. I know it’s there, I just wish I could prove it. One document stating that there is a tribal connection, one document that gives me that source of heritage, would be amazing. An affirmation of what I feel with my heart and soul.

My other familial connections have been much less elusive. I’ve found one definitive connection to a rich heritage within the land of vikings. My father’s ancestors on his paternal side come direct from Goteborg, Sweden and were there up until the very late 1880’s. My maternal grandfather’s stretches back over to Europe much farther back, some of his family members having served in the Revolutionary War. I can trace his family back to the 1600’s to an area refered to the Palitinate region which is near the present day border between France and Germany. This very European connection pulls me closer not only toward potentially European Celtic roots, possible further connections to the rich culture of the vikings, and possibly even a connection with the Gauls. There is also a traceable connection to Switzerland, which was a surprise to me.

Outside of pure curiosity and the charge that comes along with discovering this treasure trove of history, it has given me a sense of connection to my ancestors that I hadn’t expected. It has peaked my interest in exploring the history, lore and spirituality of the viking culture that is apparently running thick through my veins.

In this world of rushing about to look ahead, and technological living that disconnects us from the land and ourselves, this treasure hunt to find connection, and to discover a bit of a cultural history that’s been lost, feels a bit like tapping into an energetic infrastructure that I had not really been able to sort out before. It seems to have given me a sense of self that allows me to be more accepting of some of the bits about me that aren’t always nice, and sometimes feel a bit chaotic. It’s been a connecting of the dots that is giving me a more complete sense of self.

What helps you to connect and accept yourself with a greater sense of wholeness? What helps you to connect with a sense of pride in who you are including the parts of you that aren’t always nice? What connects your soul with that of your ancestors in a way that allows you to take a deep breath and find your inner voice rich with their history humming with connection?

The Tale of the “Halloween” Witch

Last year, I had the chance to read a blog or as Facebook calls them “Notes” about the classic Halloween witch. You’ll have to forgive me as I don’t remember who deserves the credit for this blog. It’s contents struck a nerve with me, a heartbreaking nerve at that. I will retell it the best that I can, with my own perspectives included.

The green, gnarled Imageand grotesque caricature of a witch that we have been exposed to via media, art through the ages designed to scare folks into believing that the women depicted in the art were in league with the Christians’ icon of evil known as Satan. This image and it’s association to evil has been drilled into our heads for hundreds of years. The reality of what this image should represent however is something much different, much more tragic.

I won’t give you the full history lesson of what is commonly known amongst the pagan and witch communities as “The Burning Times,” but just as a point of reference let’s point out that sometime during 15th and 18th centuries there was a period in leadership within the Christian church, in effort to spread their ideas of Christianity, created guidelines that defined the witch hunts that we now know as the “Burning Times.” Some historical accounts refer to this as “The Reformation.” Within these guidelines it was determined what denoted “devil worship,” with special attention paid in particular to the vilification of women as a whole.

Women were defined as the progenitors of “sin.”Women were equated with filth, with being weak minded, innately evil, and the list goes on. The point is, it was made very, very easy and in that time, under the mindsets of those in charge, very, justifiable for women to be hunted down on the mere suggestion of perceived wrong doing and tortured until they confessed to being in league with the Christians’ Satan, and then killed through some grotesque manner such as burning; or in many cases the victims of these persecutions, they died during the torture portion of the process. Allow me to also clarify that they didn’t target only women. The persecutions went after men as well, but more frighteningly they were just as eager to murder children in the name of their god, and their religious zealotry.

Often times the women that were targeted were older outspoken women, they were the midwives whose knowledge of herbs and the wisdoms that had kept a village in good health or good spirits had offended someone in some small way, or perhaps they were merely the wife in the way of an husband or lover of a husband, or the scapegoat used to excuse the heinous crime of someone else. You know, “She made me do it, she must be a witch.” You get the picture of where this is going. You didn’t have to do anything to earn a trip to the stake, you could be too old, too pretty, too anything or not enough of something to someone, anyone and find yourself in the hands of those set about the task of removing the influence of “Satan” or the “Devil” from their community.

Often times, when the accused were taken in to custody, so too were their children and family members. They would all undergo torture to force a confession or further accusation toward the accused to determine that they were in fact, “cavorting with devils.” If you subject a scared person, especially a child to enough pain and cruelty, you can get them to admit to just about anything, no matter how outlandish, or untrue that thing may be. They’ll say what you want them to, just to end the torment, just to end the torment put upon their families.

By the time the public would see these women condemned to die for witchcraft, and heresy, they had been beaten, and battered to the point of being unrecognizable. Their faces a mottled range of colors from different stages of bruising, with the swelling and likely infections setting in from the broken bones in their faces. Their hands gnarled and broken as well. Their hair ripped and savagely torn from their heads. Drug through the streets in rags, if they were lucky, they were often gagged so they couldn’t speak or worse, had their tongues cut out entirely. These tortured women were then paraded out through their communities, and murdered for all to see, in the name of religion. This is the gruesome reality that is the origin of the Halloween witch.

She is the face of the thousands of people, 80% of which were women who were tortured and murdered in effort for the church, and the political powers of the time to gain control of the people. She is not a depiction of evil, but of the evils that people will go to in effort to hold power over others. She represents, what happens when people create and use religious doctrines as a means to spread dissension, and fear for the purposes of their own gain. Hers is the face of the results of misogyny, hatred, jealousy, and bigotry. Her face distorted to monstrous proportions is not evil in itself, but what was done to those women, children, and yes, those men as well is most certainly evil incarnate, as are those who perpetuated it and at times you can be sure, they took pleasure in it.

I know, Halloween is months away, but this really has nothing to do with Halloween and everything to do with what most people think of when they hear the word, witch. The Halloween witch deserves to be given the reverence that she is due, simply for bearing the bigotry that continues to be elicited upon her, in honor of the people who died during that frightening time period.

I ask you, who would you be to this witch? Accusor, condemning her for an evil she likely never committed to, but admitted to simply to end the torture, as she was paraded to her place of execution? Would you turn your back on her in hopes that no one caught the recognition in her bruised and battered gaze as she was paraded passed you? Or would you acknowledge that brief glance with a moment of compassion toward her, allowing her last moments of vision to fall upon someone who could spare love for her, despite what she’d been accused of?

I ask you further, what if she represents someone you love, someone you know?

A note on the side: I would like to point out, that there are points within this post in which I have very specifically made the distinction that, “Satan,” the “Devil” are beings that are part of a Judeo/Christian ideology. I do so, not to accuse the modern Christian of anything outside of this, most Pagans and people who identify themselves as Witches, or Wiccans do not acknowledge or believe in the existence of a being known as or “Satan,” or the “Devil.” They don’t believe in the idea that there is a deity or however you’d like to term it, out there with the soul intent of getting the world to be “evil.”  He doesn’t exist at all, to people such as myself and many others within these communities. To insist that people of the world who identify as witches, pagans, or any other form of minority belief system are secretly or inadvertently worshiping the being in your religious ideology that represents the ultimate evil, is to put it bluntly…incorrect.

Resources:

http://www.thenazareneway.com/dark_side_of_christian_history.htm

http://www.gendercide.org/case_witchhunts.html

http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/salem/witchhistory.html

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/10/22/national/22beliefs.html?_r=0

Abundance and Welcome

Image

“Doing what you love is the cornerstone of having abundance in your life.”                       -Wayne Dyer

One of the challenges that has been posed to me, during the course of my evening escapes to commune with one of my best friends and spiritual sister, has been to offer up some examples of abundance in my life. At the time, I was able to come up with a few areas that were “good enough” examples for a point in my life in which everything seemed like a struggle. I don’t think at that time though, I really had felt that spiritual connection to abundance and how it could really manifest in my life. Recently, I would have to say, that’s changed. Hold on to your knickers, this gets very exciting for me.

About a week ago, a friend of mine created an event on Facebook. She’s a rather savvy person when it comes to how she chooses to utilize that social media monster, putting it’s potentially radical powers of letting everyone know your every move to good use as a way to organize and build some community among her friends, whom all happen to be interested in some form of gardening. Being a fairly wise earth goddess in her own right, this event was designed as a way that her friends could meet each other, and make use of some extra seedlings that didn’t really fit in the garden. Mostly, she didn’t want to see her gorgeous new tomato seedlings come to a bitter end after having nurtured them from seed to transplant stage. Who can blame her? It takes a lot of work and an equal amount of love to nurture something so fragile from the very beginnings of life, not to mention the waste of perfectly good tomato producing potential.

Being fairly new and sort of clumsy with gardening, I’ve pestered her from time to time for advice, resulting (to my joy) inclusion in her gardening group, and also an invitation to this seedling swap. Now, to be clear…I’d not planted a single seed this year. My garden is in facts still in the foundational stages due to some financial challenges. I had only just started to sort out how I might create my garden on a budget so tight that the couch is threatening to send in the muscle if I don’t pay back the change I found in the cushions. I accepted the invitation, only after I sent her a private message, weakly confessing that I had nothing to share. I was told to “come anyway and get some tomato plants.”

Shortly after deciding to attend this lovely gathering of women and plants, I wandered outside and started to look around my yard. I didn’t have any seedlings, but I realized I had some rhubarb that I know will spread and populate as much space as it can. It also transplants easily, and was shared with me by a member of my SCA group last year. Maybe, maybe someone would want some of that. Hey! Cool! I looked around a bit more. That yarrow I planted last year, came back. It was also shared with me by the lady I got the rhubarb from. Holy cats, is it ever growing tall and it spread out, a lot. Maybe..maybe someone would like some of that as well. Then I noticed my chocolate mint plants, they were also thriving and spreading like no one’s business, and my lillies, and hostas too! Excited that I did have something to potentially contribute, I rushed back to the computer and offered up these glorious plants that had all returned this spring. I was able to share with this little group of women, some happy rhubarb, some tall and fragrant chocolate mint, and some brilliant orange lillies, in exchange for several tomato plants at least some of which are heirloom varieties, a bleeding heart plant, black-eyed Susans, beans, tarragon, a new fern for between my hostas, and some native irises which will arrive at some point next week.

It gets better, I’ve been really wanting to create an awesome space in my backyard, but finances have been way to tight for me to be able to purchase more than a starter plant here and there this year. All of these gorgeous plants were free. Looking around at what I already have, I could easily thin out my hostas, lillies, and yarrow by spreading them to different spots in my yard. The irises will look great mixed in with the lillies. More free plants! Oh, and there’s a hollyhock growing against the corner of the house, I think it’s multiplied. I think I can move it as well. Then I realized the lilacs really need to be thinned and moved about. More free fragrant flowers! I can also share with my best friend, who would like to increase her lilac population. Abundance, abounds! Yep, it doesn’t take much to make me as happy as, Jack Sparrow with a secret stash of rum and his favorite ship.

Now, I have all these plants, I need some way to create the garden I had hoped for this year. I’d been researching how to do all of this on the cheap. Apparently, the key is to be near a place that throws their pallets out for people to take. I’ve been stalking just such a place. That’s right…stalking, I’ve been stalking that wood pile for over a year now, swearing I was going to somehow find a way to use those pallets. They are now participating in what I am referring to as “Hammer Therapy.” Hammer Therapy is the process of removing the center slats of the pallets, and alleviating my pent up aggression, (of which there is a good bit), by smacking those suckers out with a hammer. It’s a decent work out. It makes me feel empowered and happy; and it provides me with free raised beds for my garden.

Abundance, surrounds me. I find it in the woods these days as I forage for wild foods and medicinal herbs. I find it in the ability to endure that makes my family so resilient. I find it in the sweet delight of uncovering a new piece to our family tree. I find it in the unconditional love and quick forgiveness visible in the depths of the eyes of my children. I find it in the bonds formed between a 4 year old boy as he naps flopped on the couch using a patient and gentle pit bull for a pillow. I find it in my backyard, looking around for a way to fit in, for a way to contribute. It was there, and in recognizing that it is there, it allows me the opportunity to be resourceful in how I work with my surroundings, and with my own ability to create more abundance for myself and the people I love.

Sometimes it takes a bit of resourcefulness to uncover it, or a moment of looking at it from outside the box, but abundance is most assuredly there; and I am truly blessed.

Welcome to my blog. I know, it seems backwards, and at times it will be very much like a conversation with…well, with some one quite unaccustomed to caffeine after a mocha with a triple shot of esspresso. Other times, it will be much more like a walk in the woods, peaceful and soothing. I sort of flow where ever the spirits takes me. I hope you enjoy your visit and return soon.

-Blessed Be!