Witch Resolutions

Everyone is already making their lists for how different things will be in 2007. Like most people I make my list but then abandon any hope of accomplishing any of it by early February. Then around this same time every year I make the vow that I will not be the same slacker that I have been every year previously and I will at least do one thing on my list.This year – that one thing is to actually make the list itself. See! What progress! What accomplishment!

Since this site is all about me being a witch, I decided to post my resolutions as they relate to witchcraft. My personal resolutions (though they vary slightly from year to year) go in my journal and are not shared with anyone. Too embarrassing, too silly. Plus I’ve had to cross some off – like having Brad Pitt’s love-child!

My witch resolutions for 2007: (in no particular order)

1. The Mother of all Book of Shadows – Since I have so many volumes, it has gotten difficult to find and index particular spells. For years I have dreamed of having a huge book of all my best and most useful spells. I have not ever come across the right book to be the definitive Book of Shadows of Morrigane, so this year I finally took some steps to have a custom book created. I hope if (no not if – when, say when!) it gets created I then have the energy to actually write my hundreds upon hundreds of spells in it! Of course that could be a resolution for another year.

2. Organizing my Witch Cabinet – Oh the disarray. It seems organized to me, in that I can always find my oils and candles and such, but I just know there are many wonderful things in there that I could be using, that I have not catalouged. It is a daunting task – I will take a photo sometime so you can see what I am talking about. You will probably absolve me of this one since I have doubts it can be accomplished in my lifetime.

3. Setting up my Faerie Altar – This one I will do! Since I began my recent study into Faerie Magick; I’ve been eager to get an altar up to honor my Fae friends. I’m also anxious to share some of my new Faerie Magick spells in the coming year. My newest altar will be an excellent way to bring this to reality.

4. The Great Herb Purge of 2007 – Herbs are kind of like husbands. They have lots of life in them initially but eventually that vigor starts to fade. Unlike husbands though – herbs can be replaced (well some husbands can be too I suppose, just not mine!) because fresh herbs make a witch very happy in her root work. I’m usually pretty good about keeping up with this however after the move this summer I let things slide just a bit. So the start of the New Year means new herbs, new mixes, new powders. Should this come before or after the Witch Cabinet organization?

5. Crystal Re-charging – Well the truth is I need to get my rocks organized. As well as cleansing and re-charging my large altar crystals. This will be a good thing to do on the upcoming Full Moon. My crystals will be happier and so will I!

6. Circle Ritual Re-vamp – Every couple of years I like to take a look at my ritual basics and see if anything needs tweaking. I’ve been casting a particular kind of circle for the past two years now and it may be time to work on a new casting ritual. My circles are always works in progress.

7. New Spells – This one is a given. Every year I write about 30 new spells. Some are spells that are customized for unique concerns; others are epiphanies I have that bring new magick to light and still others are researched or taught to me by witch-friends. I’ll use the example of my marriage spell – for years I used the same spell until I found a much better one. This past year my old marriage spell had to hit the road and my new marriage spell (The Next Level of Love) made its debut to resounding success. So there will be many new spells and as always much magick making!

There it is! I will keep you up to date on my progress in 2007.

Now part of your resolutions in 2007 should be incorporating more magick into your life. You can start with my life-changing spell REALITY SHIFT. If you purchase one spell this year – let it be this one. The benefits are tremendous! Check out the new testimonials.

Christmas Eve Quiet

Its about an hour or two before we will be settling in for our traditional casual Christmas Eve dinner. Family members are in the living room watching “Pirates of the Caribbean II: Dead Mans Chest” and I am safely ensconced in my office, listening to Christmas Music on Yahoo. Tomorrow the house will be filled with people and merry-making and this is my last few moments of quiet calm. Our “real” holiday was already celebrated anyway (Yule) so this is simply another excuse for festivity.

I’ve got lovely bayberry candles burning throughout the house (they have been since Yule) and hand-made incense from witch-friend Silver Ravenwolf that makes the house smell glorious.

I am a huge supporter of witch-craft and like to get my supplies and such from witches who really know their stuff. Here are some of my favorites:

Silver Ravenwolf’s Ebay Store: http://stores.ebay.com/silverravenwolfdesigns

Silver offers so many unique items. I have many of her oils and incense. I make many of my own oils, but sometimes its great to have a collection made by another witch. Her stand-out items are her jewelry and art curios. They are quite lovely. And yes, this is the same Silver Ravenwolf who writes all the books on witchcraft!

Earthy Elements: http://www.earthyelements.com

Joanna is the most talented Shamaness I know. Her artwork is exquisite and her products are used in some of my mojo and spells (especially her herb mixes). I have many of her art pieces in my collection. I especially love her gourd bowls and spirit drums. She also makes the lovliest Medicine Bags and jewelry.

Knickertwist’s: http://knickertwists.ecrater.com/

Before she opened this adorable emporium, Niccola was known as “La Bona Dea” (the Good Goddess). I use her herbs and oils and have a couple of her natural wood wands for various uses. Niccola is an eclectic but like me has a strong background in Stregha (Italian Witchcraft), so I immediately felt at home many years ago when I discovered her offerings. Another gifted artist, I own many of her original painted boxes.

Dinner is ready -we’ll eat then watch “Scrooge” with Albert Finney, my favorite rendition of “A Christmas Carol” since I was a child – I always loved musicals!

So I’d like to say – “Thank you very much, thank you very much – that’s the nicest thing that anyone’s ever done for me!”

See you after Christmas.

Yuletide carols being sung by a choir…

I cannot believe that it is only 4 days until Yule! Where does the time go at this season of the year?

The good news is the family will all be arrving for Yule and Christmas and that the house is nearly ready to receive them. It seems like only yesterday we were having Thanksgiving dinner with our friends; making our plans for Christmas. Now it’s so close I can smell the eggnog and gingerbread!

For Yule this year we will cast our traditional Bayberry Prosperity spell. We will also have the lighting of the Yule log and a lovely feast. I will make Scottish Meat Pie as usual and then we will have a Yule log cake roll for dessert. Did I mention the Mead? And the punch? Oh and eggnog?

I love that Yule is so precious to us but also that it is a warm-up for Christmas. We don’t do Yule gifts; we just wait until Christmas. This year my brother will be getting his Christmas gift early – he bought a vintage corvette! I will be riding shotgun – that I guarantee!
More about Yule:

Yule is also known as the Winter Solstice. On the longest night of the year it is thought that the Goddess will give birth to the Sun God which heralds a re-birth of the light; a renewal of the coming warmth of Spring and Summer.

It’s no coincidence that many Yule traditions found new life inthe Christian holiday of Christmas. It is believed that Pope Julius I eschewed the idea of Christmas being a lunar holiday (that changed every year) and decided on December 25th as the appropriate day to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.

Thus in the fourth century Christmas found its timeless date and became one over hundreds of years with the pagan celebration of Yule.

Some of the very well-known Christmas traditions that originated as pagan are:

The Christmas Tree: This was part of Germanic Pagan Yule celebrations as well as Druidic celebrations. A tree was brought into the home in winter and decorated with berries, preserved flowers and strung with food items (seeds and nuts) as an offering to the Goddess and God. This served double duty as also appeasing the spirits of the forest and bringing good luck to the home. The tree would be live and then re-planted after winter. The earliest record of an evergreen being decorated in a Christian celebration was in 1521 in the Alsace region of Germany.

Yule Log: To celebrate Yule (the coming of the sun) a log would be brought back to the homestead to be burned on the eve of Winter Solstice. It was usually of birch, oak, pine or holly. Elder was never used as this tree was sacred to the Druids. A piece of the log would be saved to burn the following year and kept in the home for good fortune and protection. Most pagans still celebrate Yule with a Yule log but often not in a fireplace. They would use a log with holes drilled in it for candles (3 candles) that they can light on Yule Eve.

Mistletoe: Since mistletoe was known as a Druidic healing herb (and bringer of peace), it is believed that kissing under the Mistletoe was probably a fertility rite. There is a Norse myth that involves Freya and her son who was slain by an arrow of mistletoe. When he was resurrected, Freya used the mistletoe as a blessing and gave a kiss to anyone who passed beneath it.

Giving Gifts: It was common during the pagan celebration of Saturnalia (in Rome) for gifts to be exchanged. This is probably the origin of gift giving on Yule (the same day as Saturnalia, which was the Roman celebration of the WInter Solstice.) and then Christmas.

Reindeer: The stag was closely tied to The Horned One (The Green Man – God of the Forest), so it was quite natural for these creatures to become associated with Yule. Originally Santa Claus himself was depicted as an expression of the Holly King(another embodiment of the God), so it was perfect for them to pull his sleigh.

Santa Claus: The Holly King (king of the waning year) does battle with the Oak King (king of the waxing year) and traditionally the Holly King is killed and the Oak King begins his reign. The Holly King will be reborn again at Midsummer. The Holly King wore red or green often with boughs of holly and a pine wreath upon his head. Both kings are actually versions of the same Forest God.

Christmas Wreath: Since Pagans celebrated the Circle of Life, the wreath was embleamtic of this custom. It signifies the Wheel of the Year and the eight sabbats. Wreaths became popular in Norse lands during Yule celebrations. One particularly pagan holdover is the Advent Wreath.

Love Actually

Since I’ve been working as a witch on the web now for three years, I’ve met so many incredible people. I’m astounded by the locations of some of them – Pakistan to Peoria, Singapore to San Bernadino. Melbourne to Minnetonka.

At least half of my clients are foreign, many of them from Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia. Every now and then a surprise location will pop up though like Mumbai or Hong Kong. I cannot tell you how much it means to me that I am able to work with the world and not just a small provincial location where I live. I thank the Goddess for the reach of the web at the same time I curse it since so many people end up falling for the charlatans on the web.

What I feel though for all of my clients is a kind of love that is hard to describe. Some of my clients have returned to me many times for many different kinds of magick over the years. I’ve watched their lives grow and change. Seen photos of children who were born out of unions I helped them to manifest. I have a cache of wedding photos stored on my hard drive as well as happy couple photos from vacations in exotic locations around the world.

I save all my correspondences with every client, so I can keep up with them. I always appreciate it when they let me know what is going on in their lives. I feel so much joy in hearing from my long-term clients and being a part of their lives in some small way.

I put my heart and soul into my spells. I use the love that I feel for my family, my soulmate, my husband, my familiar to draw love to my clients. That means that everytime I cast a spell for love some of my love goes into it. That’s the only way I’ve found that it can possibly work.
Love + Love = More Love. Love attracts love. After over 20 years of doing this; I’ve gotten pretty good at it.

There are all kinds of love. For instance one of the greatest love relationships I’ve ever had has not even been with a human! It’s been with my familiar. For 17 years this unbelievable creature has been at my side, a part of me. Witch’s familars give great power and unconditional love to us. I am blessed by his presence.

I have a special bond with my family – each in different ways. We are closer than ever right now; having endured some dramas that made us stronger. Their love is a haven for me.

Sometimes our friends can be the greatest loves in our lives. I think about my dear old best friend from high school and how we always knew that no matter what else happened in our lives, when we are old are grey we will be there for each other.

I’ve been very fortunate to be able to fall in love with my closest friends. I think of my friend in Australia that I have known for a decade and how there is not anything I would not do for him. It feels good to be able to give that much of myself. It has taught me so much about myself by giving love like this. My heart is full. My heart is open.

This love letter is really to my clients though. You are amazing people and I am honored to be invited to assist you. I’m glad you found me.

Winter Solstice

A friend of mine recently asked me, “So what’s a witchy Christmas like?”

To begin with, while we do celebrate Christmas in my family, many witches do not instead preferring to celebrate the Winter Solstice known as Yule. In my family we do both holidays, though Yule is a little more somber an occasion.

In years past we decorated a Yule log and burned it in the fireplace, which was warm and dramatic, especially when we lived in cold climates. The last time we had a fireplace was when I lived in San Francisco and that was the last real Yule log we burned to mark the Solstice. We also had a lovely feast. There is one thing about witches – we love to feast! We set up the entire year for at least eight of them after all! (meaning the eight sabbats.)

Since being back in Florida for the past seven years, no one in the family has had a fireplace, so we have had to improvise with candles and logs drilled to fit them. It makes a lovely centerpiece or altar decoration but otherwise it doesn’t have exactly the same impact as burning a traditional Yule log.

My mother said this year we should just get a Yule log from Swiss Colony that we could eat! Unfortunately Yule seems to be taking a back seat to our Christmas holiday plans this year as the family will be together for the first time in many years.

I thought perhaps we were in need of a new tradition something different and seperate from the traitional decorations and festivities.

My new tradition is a Faerie Tree.

I’ve always been a lover of the Fae and have praticed Faerie Magick for years. Since so many earth-based traditions are incorporated into Christmas anyway, I thought perhaps this year on the Winter Solstice we could honor our fae friends.

At first (like most things I do) the tree began simply. I would use a small 2 foot tree and decorate it with Amy Brown’s Fairy Diva’s. I adore these beautiful creations and have been a fan and supporter of Amy’s since the first time I laid eyes on one.

I purchased a small tree and had about half a dozen Fairy Divas to decorate it. Enter the Mother Witch. She said the tree looked a little sad. A little “Charlie Brown Christmas”. I added some tiny lights and gold star garland. My mother said I needed to fill in the tree with more Fairy Divas.
I ordered six more. Now the tree looked like it was going to topple over.
New tree. This one twice as tall, pre-lit and expensive.
Now there were not enough Fairy Divas. I decorated the new tree with extra garland and the new Fairy Diva’s. The front looked great. The back – well, it was empty. You guessed it. More Fairy Diva’s.
This went on actually for some time until the proper balance of Fae to Tree was acheived. My mother approved and finally the tree was complete. We lit it last night and it was like the Fae themselves agreed – it twinkled with magick and glowed the way no faerie tree ever has. Please visit my site to see the photos!

I’m happy to have a new tradition and a new way to celebrate and honor magick on this Solstice. I’d love to hear how you plan to mark Yule too. Remember it is December 21st, precisely 7:22 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. This is also the first day of Winter.