Sunday, 29 September 2013

Week Ahead Reading

Monday 30th September

Snake Princess

The serpentine path to power

You are being healed and given guidance from the serpent goddess, who is the originator of all life. You are a keeper of the old ways. You are one who cannot flee these changes, and so you must use power with great discrimination and may have associations with the ancient Pythia, the Oracle of Delphi.

The propaganda about the snake and the serpent goddess has led us to fear this creature and our deep, wise, ancient self and to forgo many blessed forms of connecting with the divine and with our own DNA.

You are also able to communicate with the dead, a talent of the very wise and, some say, the very brave. Please explore this talent if this card comes forth, as an ancestor is willing to share great knowledge with you. With this knowledge you will be free and will regenerate the ancient secrets kept hidden too long.

You are strong enough. Worthy enough.

Strange Companions in Stranger Places

Challenges? Use your imagination

Your own fairytale adventure – dramatic, dark, shadowy and wild – is about to begin in an unknown world. Embrace this great adventure; You have help and enough imagination, daring and brilliance to pass every test.

Do not give up on your own ability to make great choices, to use the unlimited power of your creativity and imagination no matter how new and unknown everything and everyone is at this time. Oh yes this world is strange but so are we – and so are you! This world, and we who are in it, are also beautiful and full of fresh new promise. You have all that you need within you. The compass of your heart and your shining creativity will guide you now through the wilderness of the unknown.

You have a great power within you – the power of your creativity, your imagination and your dream self! You are going through great changes, and it seems to you like you have no power. But if you use your imagination, if you get truly creative about how to deal with new places and new people, who you can be, and what you are capable of, you will shine.

Dragonfly Mermaid

You’ve attracted wonderful news!

Dragonfly Mermaid is coming forward to be with you for a time. She will show you what colours and what moods will be best for you at present – in doing so, you make a change that all can see and that will make you very attractive to something that will come as a surprise. 

You are about to receive good news quite out of the blue. This message truly has a touch of magic about it, and once it arrives you will feel yourself glowing with happiness, health and the satisfaction of good great fortune. This is blissful change, the kind that feels like pure luck – but again, remember that you drew it to you by shifting and changing the way you are. 

There will be fresh challenges along the way, but magick is all around you and your auric field and life force themselves are highly attractive to wonderful events, people and possibilities right now. Stay on course.

Huh. That is all I can quite literally think right now, such positivity and light which is not my normal thinking. Again, this reading has messages of change, power and clarity so it is a real theme right now in my life apparently. I feel like I should be bouncing up and down with fairy lights all about me, but I think my more pragmatic, earthbound side is stronger.

The Serpent Princess is an interesting card – I’ve always had a fear of snakes (real snakes – real problem where I live) but perhaps she is reminding me to shake that fear and embrace my power, “You are a keeper of the old ways. You are one who cannot flee these changes”, so it appears so much is going to be happening, especially spiritually. Strangely, I am not surprised as much as I am surprised – which makes no sense I know – because lately I’ve been dreaming of my totem – a black panther. I think she is reminding me that I have not journeyed for some time and best get right on that.

The part about talking to the dead? Strange things have been happening in my life lately – this I think is a longer blog post for my Country Witch blog but it has been on my mind of late.

Your own fairytale adventure – dramatic, dark, shadowy and wild – is about to begin in an unknown world. Embrace this great adventure: You have help and enough imagination, daring and brilliance to pass every test”. This got my attention, it speaks of things being afoot, so stranger things lie ahead and it shall be interesting to see where it leads. 

Ms Dragonfly Mermaid is positively beaming with positivity. I do like good luck, great fortune and good news – always a wonderful thing to receive, but it bites me that it has an element of surprise because I really don’t like surprises, I never have – don’t ask me why – probably my curious nature, have to know what is coming and when. Perhaps it’s a slight control issue I need to address? 

Life is as life does and life is about to get interesting. I’ve had to look at where I want my life to go, to really understand what my purpose is and try to begin to make that happen as best I can. I think this card is telling me that as I move forward into this more firm ground and exploration of my path that worlds are before me that I may not have seen, that my power has always been there but I’ve never embraced it nor explored it as I should have and once I begin to put these things in order, including contacting my ancestors, great things will come. With this knowledge you will be free and will regenerate the ancient secrets kept hidden too long”, I wonder what it is my ancestors know that I do not? The Serpent Princess says “You are strong enough. Worthy enough”. 

Am I? Only time will tell.

Friday, 27 September 2013

Around the Garden

White Sage







No idea what this is called


Sunday, 22 September 2013

Week Ahead Reading

Monday 23rd September

The Nautilus Princess

Powerful personal growth.

I know I am strong but most people think of me as gentle, kind and good. Now I am to be the Ruler, what if they see me as power hungry, dominating, greedy or controlling? Whatever the thoughts of those around me, there will be change as I change, and I will continue to hold fast to my nautilus, as it ever reminds me to grow in ways that are in tune with my purpose, my integrity and what I feel is right. I vow to be steadfast and true, despite the challenges that are heading my way. I vow not to mis-use my power. But use it I will, and as a result I, like you, will grow in ways that are in tune with my true self, and true purpose.”

The Snow Angel

The signs are with you already.

Hmph! There. If they miss that sign, I really don’t know what will convince them. Maybe I should just stand here a while and wait till they notice me, point to the sign, flap my wings, and then they’ll believe that it is really a sign. I leave signs for all to see, clear indicators of my presence, and even make my shape in this cold snow, but again and again they ask, Where are my angels? And here I am. I will continue to leave my mark, in the snow, with a feather falling from the sky, the gentle voice that speaks to you at night, and even in the gentle prod I may give you from behind. But stop asking for signs! You have received so very many, and none of them will be seen or acknowledged until you are willing to believe that we are always with you.”

Autumn Is My Last Chance

Please don’t lose hope!

I keep waiting for help, for hope to come, but all about me is cold. I cannot find what I am looking for, and indeed, I can barely remember what it is I was in search for before I got so lost. I am cold, and alone, and no-one is with me. But I know I have this apple and that when I truly need it, I will eat it and all will be well.”

Interesting mix of cards, they all tie into one another which is great because sometimes that doesn’t necessarily happen. If I was to run them together in one brief summary I would say the reading is telling me that challenges and changes are on the way that will truly form part of me and direct me toward my purpose, that power is at hand and although I keep searching for it the signs are already there as to the where and how of it,  but I keep thinking that I need some one else to come in and save the day, make it all happen when the truth of it is, the person who makes it happen is me.

I’ve never gotten the first card in a reading before, I imagine as I make the changes in my life I am making, certain things will happen, some of it challenging but will ultimately lead me to my power and to my life purpose. It’s an interesting thought that people could perceive me as power hungry and domineering, I’m not any of those things, people do see me as kind and quiet, I am but it is not the whole of me, perhaps whatever changes will be wrought, it will just change people’s perception of me, but as I’ve stated before, I don’t really care what people think of me necessarily, I mean, I wouldn’t want people to think I’m evil or nasty because I’m certainly not, but on the whole, in every day life, what people may or may not think of me is not something I think of. For the most part as long I live my life not harming others and I’m happy being me.

I think the Snow Angel is fairly firm in her message. Wake up and pay attention, the signs are with you, just get your head out your rear and look. I understand her well, time to time we all want signs to slap in the face hardcore so we know what they are and as they don’t, we begin to not believe, to not see what may be there in a more subtle way. Not everything is going to hit like a hammer I suppose but instead gently work its way into our every day awareness. I sometimes feel like there is no one there looking out for me, I sometimes feel like Spirit is no longer there and is off making some one else’s life fabulous. Its human nature to doubt, dismiss and disbelieve but this card is telling me that if I do so, then I will never see what is there. Brings to mind the saying ‘can’t see the forest for the trees’.

The last card is like a reverse fairytale, the princess has got to strap on her boots and save herself cos ain’t no man coming round the mountain to do so. It’s time for this witch to stop saving stuff for the in case and begin to use it now, to begin to live life and eat the apple now!

Overall I think the reading is part kick in the pants, part guidance and part warning. It will be interesting to see how things progress from here.

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Week Ahead Reading

(It's a bit late this time)

Monday 16th September

Using the DruidCraft tarot

Eight of Pentacles

This is the card of the student and apprentice, and finding it in a reading may indicate that you are developing your skills, undergoing special training or working with a sense of quiet satisfaction and focus on the matter at hand. You might decide to begin regular savings, or to work carefully on creating a legacy for future generations – developing projects, land or buildings with love and attention to detail. It has been said that work is love in action, and here you have a chance to prove this, taking pride and pleasure in your abilities, and in your steady progress.

The High Priestess

The High Priestess seems to bar our way forward. Her body, channeling the power of the Goddess and the moon, and her altar, with its symbols of severity and secret knowledge, make us pause in our journey. Now is a time for entering the stillness. Don’t be in a rush to move forward in your journey. True passivity as demonstrated by the High Priestess is strong and fertile, and should not be mistaken for weakness or inertia. It is through this spiritual way of ceasing the driveness of the every day self and of opening to the inner promptings of our dreams and intuition, that we find the ‘Royal Road of the Unconscious’ – a term used by Sigmund Freud, who went on to suggest that dream analysis could take us on this road towards a more complete sense of self. Be open to your dreams and intuitions, and allow the Mysteries to unfold within your being.

Three of Pentacles

Work flourishes as you build on previous efforts. This is the card of increase and of craft – of the skilled use of matter and intelligence to create works of beauty and value. You may well find yourself receiving financial rewards or praise and appreciation for your efforts. Work may still need to be done, or improvements made, or you may even have to pass a test or prove your skill in some way. From a DruidCraft perspective, this card may indicate recognition in the development of your bardic or craft skills, or may signify at time in which you can fruitfully devote yourself to improving these skills, which involve the magic of making – whether it be physical matter or through weaving song or story, music or word, combining the gift of Awen with your own unique genius and abilities.

The first thing I think when looking at card three ‘you may even have to pass a test or prove your skill in some way’ and ‘this card may indicate recognition in the development of your bardic or craft skills’ relates to the completion of my advanced herbalism course (of which I am close to doing) and passing my final semester in my writing course respectively. Although these are more long term than the immediate week but then again, tarot doesn't always answer your immediate question, sometimes it goes for the long view.

Overall the reading is positive, it fits in with what it going on in my life right now and what I would like to achieve moving forward. I think the message to not push forward in my journey but appreciate the quiet steps on the journey is a good message, sometimes we’re all to hurried to increase our power or understanding of the mysteries and of the Craft and it is not necessarily the best thing for us.

So this is my first reading with the DruidCraft tarot and I think it went well so I may begin to use it more often.

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Changes #2

I wrote about changes previously in a post and I am now moving forward with some of them. I had considered pulling down By Bone and Bane – I still might but I've found myself put back on the Poison Path so I may continue to post on there. I think it’s a division thing, I post on my Tarot blog and also post some of the things from my tarot blog here, I think I will do that with my bane blog. Everything bane will be posted there, but will also be posted here since The Country Witch’s Cottage is the blog that covers all aspects of my path and life. 

What precipitated the consideration of pulling that blog down was that I almost felt like I don’t really do anything with it and was thinking that although there is a road along the poison path for me to walk, it is not necessarily going to be the larger part of my practice. It has changed slightly, they will be a part of my path, but I've discovered, of the banes, Mandrake is my passion and the herb that calls to me the most within the poisonous road, so this is where I will focus my attention. I've planted some more bane seeds and hopefully they come up and we shall see where I go from there,

I also want to grow more Mandrakes, I want to work with them and know some of their spirit and power. I also want to grow them on a larger scale to be able to sell them to other witches who have a connection to this plant but are unable to get a hold of one – this is long term though. For now I am going to concentrate on the Mandrakes I have growing for me. 

I am also going to close my Cauldron of Nephthys blog – as I am going to be changing my business name and re-sorting this area of my life, it no longer serves a purpose. I’m not revealing what my new business name is yet but I won’t have a blog for it I don’t think. 

I’m also in the early stages of creating herbal products for my soon to be herbal business. It will be small with only a few herbs and herbal products to begin with. I don’t want to get in over my head and find myself making too much. It would get a little expensive if I did this. So just a few tinctures, ointments, salves and whatnot to get me started; I’m hoping to have this up and running by the spring. I've discovered that I want to be more of a Wisewoman herbalist than a proper clinical herbalist, I prefer working with herbs in a more organic way, of feeling them and how they wish to be used. I am quite inspired by ‘Grow Your Own Drugs’. 

Anyway, so the changes are happening, slowly but surely. I’m moving forward with baby steps, letting things progress organically, how it’s meant to. I think this is a much healthier approach than trying to do everything all at once. But right now, I am going to go and finish off my Gobo Box for my first mandrake that is growing quite nicely this season. 

Sunday, 8 September 2013

From the Garden

Week Ahead Reading

Monday 9th September

54 - The Leaving

Moving Forward/Order/Directions

Everything you do, every new endeavour, means leaving something behind. This can be a place, a person, or even a state of mind. You can’t move forward without leaving some of what you were behind you. This is growth. It is important to acknowledge the leaving of things as you begin your journey. When you leave your house to go on a journey, be it long or short, it is a normal thing to tidy up before going. Putting things in their proper places, making sure that the plants are watered and the dishes are washed, is a way of ordering your mind and preparing it to go on the next step. When you journey psychologically, spiritually or metaphysically, you will also do well to leave your thoughts in order before you depart on that first step. Just as you would not venture into unknown territory without a map, you would be wise to ask for directions before you leave. In a reading this may mean taking another card to guide you on those first steps.

5 - Queen of Passage

Surrender/Transition/ Trust

All things change. All situations move from one phase into another. Sometimes those transitions are difficult. Letting go and moving on, whether to a new life, a new love, or perhaps a new phase of a current relationship, can be painful but the Queen of Passage is there to help with those transitions. She looks ahead with keen sight of the kestrel and can see the future with the wisdom of the raven. She holds a pomegranate, a sign of fertility. There is growth in the future. There is a way ahead. The darkness comes as you step from one state to another. The moment of passage between the past and future, between the worlds themselves, is a moment of surrender.

Trust this great queen to be your guide. Listen to what she has to tell you and then take that step. She will be by your side in the moment you move out of the past and into the future.

63 - The Dreaming

Creative thoughts/Imagination/Permission to Dream

How empty life would be if we couldn’t dream. I don’t mean just nighttime dreams, although they are important. I mean waking dreams. Imagination. Creative thought. That sort of dreaming makes us who we are. Faerie itself is a world approached by our dreams, seen with our inner eyes and felt with our hearts. In our dreams we can be free to explore the other realms and get to know the beings we meet there. We touch Faerie with our dreams.

The Dreaming is a gift for you, to remind you to dream, to be creative. No one is going to judge your dreams. Don’t be afraid to imagine what you wish for. By giving your wishes and needs a voice in your dreaming, you can help to bring them into the human world as well. Dream it first and see what happens. Of course, if dreaming has consequences, then perhaps it would be a good idea not to dream of a huge monster coming to eat your neighbour

It almost seems unnecessary to interpret these cards because I feel as though they are all fairly self explanatory. This is not actually the first reading I did with this deck, but the first three cards didn’t feel right, but the very first card of this reading made perfect sense and answered a question I had. See, I journeyed last night to converse with a being I am getting to know, as I left the journey I heard the word ‘sacrifice’, The Leaving almost answers that in a nutshell. “Everything you do, every new endeavour, means leaving something behind. This can be a place, a person, or even a state of mind. You can’t move forward without leaving some of what you were behind you” – this could almost be the very definition of sacrifice. 

Moving forward, the past few readings have been talking about moving forward, of change – almost as though I may not be getting the message. I think I am, I mean you can only move forward so much at a time, change I understand because change is inevitable, it happens whether we like it or not. “Letting go and moving on, whether to a new life, a new love, or perhaps a new phase of a current relationship, can be painful but the Queen of Passage is there to help with those transitions” the Queen of Passage says, perhaps she wonders if I am afeared of moving forward because it could be painful. I’m not sure I understand what could be painful, letting go of old memories and hopes can be hard, especially if you realise there was much left not done or said, however some things end that way – they’ll never have closure because they reached their inevitable conclusion – perhaps as people we need the closure because it somehow adds a final colour to the experience – an end note that is more satisfactory than the one we’re left with. 

I love The Dreaming – I am a dreamer, always have been and I want to keep dreaming but have some of those dreams made manifest. “By giving your wishes and needs a voice in your dreaming, you can help to bring them into the human world as well” – yes please. I most definitely want some of my dreams to become reality.

This reading answered some questions and is helping me gear up for the week ahead. I may actually post the first reading because it may have some relevance to this one, I will just have to see how I get on. I am happy with this reading, inasmuch as it does give insight and voice to the new stages of my life.

Thursday, 5 September 2013

New Herb Garden

I've been herb shopping again, couldn't help myself, springtime brings out the plant fiend in me!

So what did I buy?

For the Aussie Witches - I got these herbs from Mudbrick Herb Farm Cottage - their prices are reasonable and their postage rates not too bad. I generally get most of my herbs from them.

This is where the plants will end up once I get off my butt and actually weed it. This is under our Oak tree, I've been wanting to herbify this area for some time now, the impetus to do so is I have 8 herb plants that can't stay in their pots forever! I think it will look lovely, the burdock won't be going there, apparently it doesn't do too well near Oak, so I think I'll move my Valerian and Echinacea if or when it comes back up this year and put the burdock where they were. It seemingly likes plenty of space so we'll see how it all goes!

Oak Awakening

It's no secret that I love my Oak, more so than any other tree in our yard, and when I eventually move to my own home (working on it), the first thing I will be planting is an Oak. We have a couple growing in pots, they are slow growers but magnificent and magical trees. My particular Oak is a Quercus Robur - or
English Oak.

I can always tell when spring is coming alive, the Oak awakes from slumber ready to greet the world. The Greenman is alive and celebrating the lush veil of nature that begins to come alive. 

A tree of rulership, power, faery, otherworld, strength, endurance, protection and generosity.

Little buds are protected by their older, more formed cousins as they wait their turn to become leaves.

It always reminds me of a tree in a bayou in Lousiana at this stage because it is part leaf, with hanging buds yet to open, the whole effect is quite incredible.

Carrying a piece of Oak with you brings good luck - but it is important to remember to ask the tree first.

The roots of an Oak mirror its canopy size wise. So the roots on ours are quite substantial.

Oak is truly the King of the Magical Trees. It is powerful, full of energy yet almost quiet in its existence. My tree has a particularly powerful energy running through it, simply placing my hand on the trunk gives me a jolt, a feeling of energy surging up my arm and into my body. 

Monday, 2 September 2013

Week Ahead Reading

Monday 2nd September

18 - The Moon

Trust instincts, subconscious manifested, creativity, psychic

Dreams, intuition, and/or psychic experiences will come unexpectedly. This is a time when you act on impulse without thinking things through. People who deal in illusion are drawn into your circle. Secret enemies are at work. Your negative and illusionary thinking are disrupting your progress

TGW: Psychic awareness, dreams and visions are eluded to in this card, with the path passing between polarities, so one may walk between the worlds while yet remaining grounded, as with astral travel. To the Witch, this card relates to the cauldron of the Esbat, used with water for divination, or as the avenue through which spells are transformed from energy and visualization into physical presence.

Ace of Pentacles

Commercial success, prosperity, material attainment, promotion

A prosperous new cycle is now beginning. Material success is now within your grasp. With a little effort, this time could be the beginning of a profitable career.

TGW: This is a card of material goods, business ability and fruits of labour realized. Success in finances or secure income may play an important role in the reading.

9 – The Hermit

Wisdom, seeker, guide, personal growth, changing times

This card may represent a loner or one who prefers periods of solitude. A counselor or teacher gives you sound advice. Rethink your goals after giving the situation much thought; use all practical resources to come to your decision. Pull back from your frantic round of activities or your health and happiness may be harmed.

TGW: For the Witch, this card relates to the beginning and the ending of the solar year at the Winter Solstice of Yule, with the wise old Holly King departing with a wry smile to his Younger self, the Oak King, knowing the cycle of life and the lessons learned will be repeated through human generations as it is yearly for the God

Now the Justice card makes sense – I did a reading first for the week ahead but the Justice card came up, making little sense to me because I am not facing, in danger of facing nor approaching any sort of legal matters that I can think of. But should business be going ahead as it suggested in this reading perhaps contracts of some kind are in the offering – who knows? The key words for Justice are: Objective, balanced, fair, ethical, and prevailing in a legal matter. Looking at it in a standard type way, perhaps when approaching the new phases of my business, I will need to be balanced and ethical as well as objective. It’s something to think about I suppose – my dad suggested I might win the lottery – now that kind of relation to the card I could certainly get down with!

So onto the reading itself, the Moon card is always a curious thing to me, but I always tend to read it more for it’s psychic value than it’s meaning of deception. I am working on my psychic abilities – I recently purchased a book called ‘The Book of Magick Power’, it has plenty of practical exercises for working on your abilities. I’m not far into it but it’s not too bad so far. I’m also trying to do more practical witchery, like spellcasting, so if my efforts create my goals manifest, I will be a very happy little witch. I feel as though I lack in the psychic ability area and although it is not necessary for a witch to be so, I feel like it will definitely deepen my connection to the world around me and also give me more strength within my Craft.

The Ace of Pentacles is always lovely, who doesn’t wish for success in their endeavours? I most certainly do, and since I am working toward that goal, I sincerely hope this card reads true and my efforts are successful. Although for the most part, what I do, I do for personal pleasure as well as to help people, one of my changes forthcoming is I wish to make this part of my life overall. Being a Witch, it is not what I do but who I am and so therefore I want it to be one of the major aspects of my life alongside my Herbalism career wise.

The Hermit – straight off I do identify ‘This card may represent a loner or one who prefers periods of solitude’ – that would be me. I much prefer my own company to getting out and being more social, I’ve always been this way and the only way I would look to change it is to create a coven or circle. I wouldn’t say I’m in the middle of frantic activities but I do have a lot on my plate with more forthcoming – mostly of my own doing so I do need to re-evaluate those goals and see if there is a better way of going about achieving things without sending myself completely mental. I am wondering if the Oak King plays into the reading from last week when it mentioned Cernunnos and the forthcoming happiness – although I think it is also because as I look out the window, I see our wonderful Oak beginning to get his leaves, sprouting forth and welcoming spring. I love spring, I do, but I mourn winter because I much prefer that season to the dastardly heat that is not too far away.

Overall this reading pretty much envelopes where my life is right now, I wouldn’t say there are any huge surprises but the idea of legal matters is curious. Moving forward I really do want to work on my abilities and my businesses and move forward in a positive fashion. Also if my spellcasting comes manifest I will be very happy because it shows I am growing in personal power which is always a great thing.