GrannyMoon’s Weekly Feast 21-28 July 2019


Blessed be my little witch. To those who came before and those who will come after, know that the Goddess is with you always. Thank you all my dear readers…be blessed.

The NEW MOON always rises at sunrise
And the FIRST QUARTER at noon.
The FULL MOON always rises at sunset
And the LAST QUARTER at midnight.
~The New Orleans Mistic


Dark Moon — Time to Rest
New Moon — Time to Begin New Projects; Birth; Attraction
Waxing Moon — Time to Grow; Increase
Full Moon — Time to be Fulfilled; Abundance
Waning Moon — Time to Banish; Decrease
Last Sliver of Moon — Time to Die; Letting Go
Dark Moon — Time to Rest Again

Light A Candle Today!
In many different traditions lighting a candle is a sacred action. It expresses more than words can express. It has to do with gratefulness. From time immemorial, people have lit candles in sacred places. You may want to begin or end your day by the sacred ritual of lighting a candle on this gratefulness. Or you may want to light a birthday candle for a friend. One single guideline is all you need: Slow down and do it with full attention.


Goddess Month of Month of Kerea begins 7/11 – 8/8
Celtic Tree Calendar: Tinne (Holly) July 8 to August 4

Current Moon Phase: The Waning Moon

Time: From Full Moon to Dark Moon (approx.14 days)

Goddess Aspect: Crone

Associated Goddesses: Callieach, Banshee, Hecate, Kali, Morrigan

Magickal Attributes: Releasing the old, removing unwanted negative energies, wisdom, psychic ability, scrying, reversing circumstances. Workings on this day are for banishing magick, for ridding oneself of addictions, illness or negativity, physical and psychic cleansings.

Waning Moon Magick: The period between the Full Moon and the New Moon, from three-and-a-half to ten-and-a-half days after the Full moon. From the Full Moon to the New is a time for study, meditation, and magic designed to banish harmful energies and habits, for ridding oneself of addictions, illness or negativity. This is a time for banishing and rejecting things in our lives that we no longer wish to carry around with us.

Honoring the Goddess Every Day at
So mote it be!!


Each And Every Day A Feast Day!
Embrace It!!!


The GoddessSchool
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The Goddess School Grimoire
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The Goddess School Grimoire is a collection of recipes, artwork, poetry, prose, prayers, rituals, spells, and practical Goddess wisdom put together by the teachers, students, alumni, and friends of The Sisters of the Burning Branch Goddess School. The sisterhood is dedicated to restoring spiritual balance by returning the Divine Feminine to her rightful place and by assisting women in their personal and spiritual development. Since being founded by Head and High Mother Priestess Grandmother Moon in 2000, The Goddess School ( has grown into a large and beautiful global community of women


GrannyMoon is Founder and Mother High Priestess of GoddessSchool, Sisters of the Burning Branch, dedicated to the Feminine Divine. Living in the Washington, DC suburbs, she attended LDS Seminary, Former staff member and student of the Esoteric Theological Seminary, is an ordained Metaphysical Interfaith minister with doctoral degrees in Theology and Divinity, since 1999. She is a current board member of the Northern Virginia Pagan Pride Day, charter member and former counsel and board member of The Order of the White Moon. A scholar of ancient mysteries, Doula, Reiki Master, Herbalist and Lifetime Member of Herbal Healer Academy, Inc. and former VA State Representative A.R.E.N. Alternative Religions Educational Network. She has dedicated her life to the study and teaching of the Esoteric.

Join me!  Saturday’s with GrannyMoon!

Face to Face classes at Sticks and Stones – 11037 Lee Highway · Fairfax, VA

On the last Saturday of the month I host the Most Excellent Order of the Black Hat – open to all – a group of solitaires who celebrate the Wheel of the Year. 7:00 – 9:00PM

GrannyMoon’s Herbal Witches Cauldron – Every last Saturday of each month. Explore a new herb or two and work on a hands-on project with us. 4-6PM

Sticks and Stones ~ Westfair Center
11037 Lee Highway Fairfax, VA 22030 (703)352-2343

Teach a witch a spell and she can do that spell. Teach a witch the craft and she can do magick!

GrannyMoon, Teaching the Craft for over 20 years!


GrannyMoon Says Today Is: Moon Day Hail Luna! Hail Mani! Energy: Female Ruler: The Moon Magicks involving the subconscious, healing, emotions, love, spirituality, healing wounds, children, small animals, women’s mysteries,mothers, sisters, female partners, wives, instincts
Today’s Magickal Influences: Agriculture, Domestic, Long Life, Medicine,
Travels, Visions, Theft
Today’s Goddesses: Luna, Selene, Diana, Re, Gaeleach, Ida, Artemis [Whom The
Greeks Associated With Bast], The Witches, Yemaya, Erzulie, Bast
Incense: Myrtle
Perfumes: White Poppy, White Rose, Wallflower
Monday – Wear pearl, moonstone, or crystal. Use an emerald for amulets.
Color of The Day: Silver, Grey, White
Colors for Tomorrow: Red
Candle: White
Cooking on Monday will improve magics for creativity, insight, maternal
nature, and Goddess-related efforts. ~Quote from Magickal Martha

Hail Tyr! GrannyMoon Says Today Is: Tyr’s or Tiu’s Day! Day of Mars, Ares, Tiwaz, Tiw (from whom it is named), Tuisco,. Magickal influences are: Passion, courage, aggression and protection, vitality, passion, ambition and raw, unabashed power. Mars energy makes the mind acute.It is lucky to meet a left-handed person on any day except Tuesday – then it’s an ill omen. A superstition from areas of England that were ruled by the Danelaw, because the day is named for Norse God Týr who sacrificed his right hand to bind the Fenris Wolf. #FolkloreThursday

Tuesday – Wear a ruby, star sapphire, or emerald. Use topaz for amulets.
Today’s Magickal Influences ~ Destination, War, Courage, Surgery, Physical Strength
Be cautious-especially while traveling.
Today’s Goddesses: Aset [Isis], Soorejnaree, Pingalla, Anna, Aine, Danu,
Yngona, Bellona, Aida Wedo, Sun Woman
Perfumes: Hellebore, Carnation, Patchouli
Incense: Lignum Aloes, Plantain
Color of The Day: Red
Colors for Tomorrow: Yellow
Lucky Sign: Tuesday Is The Lucky Day For Aries
Candle: Red
On Tuesday, cooking up a hearty meal featuring carrots, peppers, and garlic (all Mars foods and spices) to empower yourself for victory and success!
Hail Odin! GrannyMoon Says Today Is: Woden’s or Odin’s Day
Energy: Male Ruler: Mercury – Rules healings, the mind – Use for magick
involving mental issues, learning, higher education, addictions,
communications, travel, young people, messages, perception, self-expression,
artists, poets, and writers
Wednesday – Wear amethyst, star ruby, or lodestone. Use turquoise in amulets.
Today’s Magickal Influences: Conjurations, Predictions, Knowledge, Writing,Eloquence
Incense: Cinnamon, Cinquefoil
Perfumes: Sweetpea, Lavender, Mastic, Frankincense, Cloves
Color of The Day: Yellow, Grey
Colors for Tomorrow: Purple, Indigo, Blue
Candle: Yellow
Lucky Sign: Wednesday Is The Lucky Day For Gemini And Virgo
Today’s Goddesses: Aset [Isis], Demeter, Ceres, Spider Woman, Bona Dea, Oya,
Devi-Kali, Hella, Rhiannon, Coatlique, Maman Brigette, Sekhmet, Hathor
GrannyMoon Says Today Is: Thor’s Day Hail Thor!
Energy: Male
Ruler: Jupiter
Today’s Magickal Influences ~ Luck, Religion, Healing, Trade And Employment,Treasure, Honors, Riches, Legal Matters,
Use Growth, Expansion, Prosperity, Money, Business, Attracting attracting more of what you have.
Thor’s Day – Wear sapphire, cat’s eye, or carnelian. Use sapphire in rituals.
Today’s Goddesses: Juno, Hera, Kwan Yin, Mary, Cybele, Tara, Mawu, Mlaba Mwana Waresa, Ishtar, Nuit
Color of The Day: Purple, Indigo, Blue
Candle: Purple, Blue
Colors for Tomorrow: Green, Light Blue
Perfumes: Stock, Lilac, Storax, Aloes
Incense: Nutmeg, Henbane
Lucky Sign: Thursday Is The Lucky Day For Sagittarius And Pisces
Hail Freya! GrannyMoon Says Today Is: Freya’s Day
Energy: Female Ruler: Venus – Rules lovers and pleasure, affairs of the
heart – Use for magick involving love, peace, beauty, gentleness, women’s
problems, healing, protection, lovers, ease, pleasure, affairs. Resolve
quarrels today!
Friday – Cast love spells on Fridays. Wear blue robes and use turquoise, ruby, emerald or cat’s eye.
Today’s Magickal Influences: All Love Matters, Friendships, Affection,
Partnerships, Money, Sex
Today’s Goddesses: Astarte, Aphrodite, Erzulie, Aida Wedo, Eve, Venus,
Freya, Frigg, Diana, Aset [Isis], The Witch Of Gaeta, Chalchiuhtlique
Incense: Saffron, Verbena
Perfumes: Stephanotis, Apple Blossom, Musk, Ambergris
Color of The Day: Light Blue, Pale Green
Candle: Green
Colors for Tomorrow: Black
Lucky Sign: Friday Is The Lucky Day For Taurus And Libra
Saint Jegudiel represents Friday
Hail Loki! GrannyMoon Says Today Is: Saturn and Loki’s Day
Day of Seatere, Seater, and Saturn and of Loki, the Norse god of tricks and
revelry. Saturday is ruled by Saturn, whose Magickal influences are:
longevity, endings, and homes. Saturday comes under the influence of Saturn.
Saturn’s influence directs our attention toward routine chores, customs, and
conventional traditions. Saturday is a good day for furthering our ambitions
through perseverance, patience, responsible action, and a sense of purpose .
Saturday – Wear turquoise, labradorite, or diamond. Use amethyst.
Saturday is a good day of the week to perform spells and rituals involving
spirit communication, meditation, psychic self-defense, binding, and
locating lost things or missing persons.
Today’s Goddesses: Ops, Rhea, Tellus Mater, Gaia, Eartha, Ge, Tonantzin,
Asherah, Anath, The Shekinah, The Matronit, Mary, Gula, Herodias, Oddudua,
Today’s Magickal Influences: Duties, Responsibilities, Finding Families,
Works Of Magic, Buildings, Meditation, Life, Doctrines
Today’s Energies: Female – Rules obstacles, overcoming blockages – Use for
magick involving overcoming limitations, the elderly, endings, deaths,
blocks, constrictions, and those restricting you.
Incense: Pepperwort, Assodilious, Black Poppy Seeds, Henbane, Lodestone,
Perfumes: Hyacinth, Pansy
Color of The Day: Black
Colors for Tomorrow: Orange, Gold and Yellow
Lucky Sign: Saturday Is The Lucky Day For Capricorn And Aquarius
Candle: Black
Hail Sunna and Sol! GrannyMoon Says Today is: Sun Day
Energy: Male
Ruler: The Sun
Rule health, prosperity, leadership, joy, and protection – Use for magick involving happiness, prosperity, joy, healing, protection, power,
leadership, ego, authority figures, fathers, husbands
Today’s Goddesses: Sunne, Frau Sonne, Aditi, Igaehindvo, Amaterasu, Arinna,
Izanami, Ochumare
Sunday’s Magickal Influences: Health, Healing, Confidence And Hope, Prosperity
Incense: Dragons Blood
Perfumes: Heliotrope, Orange Blossom, Cloves, Frankincense, Ambergris, Musk, Myrrh
Sunday – wear topaz, sunstone, or diamond. Use pearl in crafting talismans.
Color of The Day: Orange, Gold
Colors for Tomorrow: Silver, Gray, White
Lucky Sign: Sunday Is The Lucky Day For Leo
Candle: Yellow


Llewellyn’s Spell A Day

A Water Cleansing Spell
July 15, 2019 by James Kambos

With the sun in the water sign of Cancer, this is a good time to use water magic to cleanse yourself of a bad habit or problem. For this spell you’ll need a plain white sheet of paper, a pen or a non-permanent marker, and water. You’ll also need an old glass or a clean empty jar.

First, write the habit or problem you want to be rid of on the paper. Fill the glass or jar with water. Next, fold the paper and place it in the water. Visualize your problem being diluted and cleansed away by the water. After a few minutes, take the glass jar outside. Now pour the water onto the ground or a compost pile. You may bury the paper or throw it away. In this spell, as your ink begins to fade in the water, your problem begins to weaken.
Eclipse in a Bottle
July 16, 2019 by Elizabeth Barrette

The full moon represents the
peak of lunar power, while an
eclipse hides and reveals the light.
It’s a powerful time for revelation and transformation. It’s just not always there when you need it.

This spell allows you to store the energy of the eclipse for future use. You will need a silver coin-real silver if you can get it, but silver-colored will do. Hold the coin in your hand and concentrate on making it a vessel for this energy. During the eclipse, lay the coin where the moonlight can reach it. Turn it over several times to expose both sides to all phases of the eclipse. After the eclipse is over, hold the coin in your hand again and imagine sealing it. Now you will be able to use eclipse energy whenever you need it. Ideally, keep the coin in a black bag until then.
Summer Scents
July 17, 2019 by Deborah Blake

One of the best parts of summer is the way everything is blooming and smells so sweet. Many herbs are at their peak around now, and can be used for magical work both large and small. Rosemary, for instance, is good for mental activities, lemon balm for healing, and basil for prosperity.

Pick an herb or plant that has the qualities you want to work on (if you can’t get fresh, essential oils will do), and breathe deep, pulling the magical essence of the plant inside along with its scent. You can say this spell as you enjoy the earthy energy of the plant:

“From the earth you have grown,
Your scent so sweet and light.
Lend your power to my magic,
Under summer skies so bright.”
The Earth Provides
July 18, 2019 by Emyme

We are halfway through July and the bounty of the earth is everywhere. At the height of the summer, healthy foods are abundant. What are the fruits and vegetables growing in your particular part of the world? Many farms have “pick your own” sections, from the first to the last crop. Green beans, peas, and cherries are ripe and ready to be picked at this time of year, just to name a few. Perhaps you have planted a garden in your own yard—zucchini and tomatoes flourish in many climates. Create a meal with a special emphasis on nature’s plenty. Local farmers’ markets often provide recipes specific to their produce: salads and soups, garnishes and side dishes—all created or enhanced by the seasonal gifts from the land. Say:

“The four elements come together
and provide nature’s gifts,
Blessed by the lady and lord,
For the nourishment of
our body and soul.”
Take Me Away Spell
July 19, 2019 by Melanie Marquis

Use this spell to help manifest the resources and opportunity needed to travel. Collect images of the place you want to go, and assemble these into a collage or booklet. Print out a bunch of your selfie photos, and cut them out so that it’s just you in the picture, without any background. Glue your selfies all over the images you’ve assembled of your ideal travel destination so that you now have a concrete image of yourself in the place you would like to go. Imagine how you will feel when you are there. Put the images somewhere in your home where you’ll see them frequently, and place a coin bank somewhere nearby. Try to add some money to the coin bank each day for your travel fund as you imagine how you will feel to actually be there.
Reverse and Rebalance
July 20, 2019 by Storm Faerywolf

While forward motion often p roves difficult during a Mercury retrograde, it is a perfect time to revisit and reevaluate positions and tactics so that when the Heavenly Messenger goes direct, we’ll be ready. This spell reverses the direction of a bad situation and brings balance.

You will need:
* 2 candles of matching size, one orange, the other blue
* A nail or implement to carve into the candle wax
* Olive oil
* Cinnamon powder
* Dried lavender

Using the nail or implement, carve into each candle the astrological symbol for Mercury ( O), along with a symbol or word that represents your problem. With olive oil, dress the candles, the orange one while focusing on attraction and then the blue one with a focus on banishing. Dust, roll, or sprinkle the orange candle with lavender and the blue one with cinnamon. Place in holders side by side on your altar. Light them both while saying:

“Reverse, retrace, revisit, reframe,
Rebalance, regain, remember, rename.
Rekindle, relight, reforge, reshape.
Retry, remark, and resolve.”

Let the candles burn down safely. Meditate or do divination to determine how the situation will evolve when Mercury finally goes direct. For when he does, you need to be ready!
Eternal Child of Summer
July 21, 2019 by Estha McNevin

In a parade of laughter and excitement, children have a way of casting a magick of their own when it comes to summer adventures and first experiences. This fun family spell is a great bonding tool that can help keep everyone in the family focused on positive goal-setting for the lazy days of summer.

With your child (or children), other family members, or close friends, venture out to a park or local pond at sunset. Really observe the ecosystem together. Bravely track down and collect an insect for each person. Look for strange and unusual bugs in your area, such as fireflies, and learn about them together using your smartphones or an encyclopedic reference of local fauna. Make a wish as a family and then release each bug. Bring along a picnic and let the warm sunset wash you in the loving glow of the season.


Weekly Tarot Card: The Sun
by Biddy Tarot

It’s going to be a great week! The Sun represents success, radiance and abundance. The Sun gives you strength and tells you that no matter where you go or what you do, your positive and radiant energy will follow you and bring you happiness and joy. People are drawn to you because you can always see the bright side and bring such warmth into other people’s lives. This beautiful, warm energy is what will get you through the tough times and help you succeed. Radiate who you are and what you stand for; shine your love on those you care about.

If you are going through a difficult time, the Sun is here to let you know that things will get better, a lot better! Everything will work out, and through your challenges you will discover who you really are and radiate your energy and gifts into the world.

Ask the Tarot: “What do I feel really good about right now?”


Heartwings Love Notes 889 Cool Food for Hot Days

Heartwings says, “Take it easy when the heat saps your energy.”

When the temperature soars, I lose my enthusiasm for cooking. My appetite suffers too, which is one of the reasons I am so fond of fall. As I get older, this condition gets worse, and these hot days I have to work hard to keep Stephen and myself adequately nourished. I’ve never been one for pre-prepared meals. Heat and serve is not normally my friend. Outdoor cooking is not an option where we live, nor a preference for either of us. That leaves salads.

A salad that provides sufficient protein is vital for us both. Again as I get older I need to beware of consuming too many carbohydrates. My small but useful electric indoor grill can provide easily cooked hot dogs and hamburgers, however, I like variety and wouldn’t wish to serve those more than once a week at the most. That’s two out of the fourteen lunches and dinners meals in a week. The cooked chickens from the supermarket can provide several more meals.

Our favorite protein salads are chicken, egg, and seafood, with occasional tuna. Aside from the protein source, the basic ingredients for my salads consists of finely chopped scallions or sweet onion, celery, herbs as appropriate, mayonnaise, horseradish sauce and sweet mustard or honey mustard dressing. The herbs nearly always include parsley, sniped with scissors, and either dried or fresh tarragon, thyme, ground garlic, and lemon pepper. Sometimes I use curry powder instead of herbs. One or the other is good, not both.

For egg salad for the two of us, I hard cook (never boil) four eggs and use parsley, thyme, ground garlic and lemon pepper, mayonnaise and horseradish sauce. Dill is good too. For a chicken salad I cut up around two cups or so of the cooked white meat that Stephen prefers. I use tarragon, parsley, ground garlic, and lemon pepper, mayonnaise, horseradish sauce and sometimes some mustard. A smidgen of salt is good. Thyme instead of tarragon is also good with chicken. Canned tuna or seafood salad is the same. I use the packaged imitation Crab and find it economical and tasty, as well as nourishing.

Enjoy your meals with a minimum of preparation and feel grateful if you have air conditioning.

Blessings and Best Regards, Tasha Halpert <>

PS How do you cope with the heat, dear readers? I love to hear from you and will always answer as soon as I can. My new book, Up to my Neck in Lemons has some good recipes for summer eating as well as poetry and perspective essays. I will happily send you an autographed copy if you mail $15. To me at P.O.Box 171, North Grafton, MA 01536


How To Use a Pendulum
by Ghost Hunting Theories.

We often think of the pendulum as a spiritualist’s parlor trick, like divining rods or table tipping and Ouijas. It is often used for interviewing spirits and in conjunction with EVP recordings, it can be another form of verification.

You hold the pendulum by your fingertips. It helps if you can clear your mind, let yourself be ready to receive, no extra head-room chatter.

Test it by holding it out and saying a truthful statement such as “My name is (your name).” When it starts moving, note if it is going back and forth or in a circle. You now know the movement for “yes.” Now, to test it, make an untruthful statement such as “My name is (someone else’s name)” and see if it makes the opposite motion. Such as – if the truth created a circular pattern in the pendulum’s swing, then did the falsehood create a back-and-forth movement? You now know your “yes” and “no” movements.

You can also utilize the pendulum to find things. “Am I facing you?” (yes or no) Now, walk into another room and turn. “Am I facing someone?” You can learn much from your answers. “Do you want me to leave this room?”

Some people utilize pendulums in their everyday life. They ask it questions they already know the answer to like “Do I like my job?” or “Am I 36 years old?” But, then they can begin to feel a sureness in the way those were answered compared to ones they don’t have answers to, like “Will I be getting a raise this year?” or “Will my boyfriend ask me to marry him?”

It’s basically a skill that comes with time and utilizing the same pendulum so you know its particular feel. You must be patient too. Sometimes, it looks like it’s going back and forth and then begins to circle.

For the women out there, you might appreciate this – I wear a windchime necklace to an investigation.

I attached a small key ring circle to it and hook the chain of my pendulum to it. I can wear them to the investigation as a piece of jewelry and then I remove the pendulum to utilize it and hang the windchime up in a room to know if anything is moving about. Of course, be certain windows are closed, air-conditioning and heating are turned off, and there are no ceiling fans.


The Legacy Of Future Dreams
by Rachael Freed

As I think about us being the link between past and future generations, I wonder about our ancestors, how they had the courage, held on to their dreams, and often risked everything to fulfill their dreams of coming to America, and here we are, the culmination of those dreams.

“When we undertake the pilgrimage, it’s not just to escape the tyranny at home but also to reach the depth of our souls” – Orhan Pamuk

We grieve forgotten or broken dreams from our past, but in honoring the life of poet Mary Oliver, who asked: “What it is you plan to do with your wild and precious life?” it is our responsibility as legacy writers to “reach the depths of our souls,” to make conscious the plans, aspirations, and dreams we have for our future, and to provide that as legacy for future generations.

A simple example: A young woman recently told me she wouldn’t get in to a course of study she dreamed of, so she wasn’t going to apply. My response was that she surely would not be admitted if she didn’t apply! We both laughed; she decided to make application, and she begins that course of study in October.

“We dream to give ourselves hope. To stop dreaming – well, that’s like saying you can never change your fate.” – Amy Tan

Having dreams for and planning for our futures require us to believe that our lives are always precious – and often wild. We need the courage our immigrant ancestors had to live our dreams, knowing we won’t always get what we hope for. It requires of us the willingness to grieve broken dreams, to let go, and eventually to open again to hopes for the future – words more easily written than lived.

“I hold it true, whate’er befall; I feel it when I sorrow most, Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.” – Alfred Lord Tennyson

Taking Action:

1. Reflect and write about dreams you had for your life as an adolescent and young adult. Did they become a part of the life you’re living now? In each decade since then, your life has likely changed in surprising and unexpected ways. Were those changes related to conscious visions and dreams you had for yourself? If yes, how have you celebrated them? And if not, have you allowed yourself to grieve them so you can dream new dreams?

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – H. Jackson Brown Jr.

2. Let yourself explore and dream about what you aspire to for your next twenty years. Be brave enough to commit to them by writing them down.

3. Choose a legacy letter recipient – a trusted someone with whom you want to share your dreams for yourself.

4. In your letter share about old dreams that came to fruition and those that did not. And allow yourself to be vulnerable enough to share those things you hope for in the next twenty years.

5. After you’ve written your letter, reflect again – about how thinking and writing about your aspirations for your precious and wild life adds to your courage to act to make them real, as well as how that makes you feel and think about yourself, and the legacy of your life.

“May you allow yourself to dream your dreams, and may they enrich your precious life.” – Rachael Freed


The Metaphysics of Crystals and Self Power

“Traditionally, metaphysics refers to the branch of philosophy that
attempts to understand the fundamental nature of all reality, whether
visible or invisible. It seeks a description so basic, so essentially
simple, so all-inclusive that it applies to everything, whether
divine or human or anything else. It attempts to tell what anything
must be like in order to be at all. The term metaphysics originally
referred to the writings of Aristotle that came after his writings on
physics, in the arrangement made by Andronicus of Rhodes about three
centuries after Aristotle’s death”.

The Metaphysics of self-empowerment offers me the options Will I be
the…The Victim or the Victor?

To awaken and develop our true self we must first reconstruct our
thoughts and feelings. If we choose to focus our attention on the
denial of light we become victims. If we choose to focus our
attention on the acceptance of light we become that light.

The reality you live in is nothing more than where your attention
lies. The purpose of each soul is to dismantle the negative emotional
tendencies acquired through previous acts, words, and deeds. To be the
emissary of light that you originally chose to be it is important to
awaken the light within your self. One way to do this is to let go of
the “security of your insecurity.” This process opens up a world of
possibilities. When you do not perceive yourself as a victim you are
choosing to acknowledge your personal integrity and life begins to
blossom in a balanced way.

Living in a state of balance is a matter of choice. Because our
experiences represent the foundation on which we stand and
consciousness expresses itself through that foundation, it is
important to remember to acknowledge the light in every experience you

Acknowledging the light is a simple process. If a situation arises
that you do not like, before you react to it, say this statement out
loud, “I acknowledge the light within this situation.” Over time you
will find that this simple act will produce positive changes in your
reaction to the situation.

The time to let go of the victim role is now, not tomorrow. If you
live in tomorrow today, you decrease your energy, your thoughts
become scattered and unhealthy emotions set in. If you live in the
the moment, however, your attention to that moment manifests a following
Always remember that where your attention lies today determines what
lies ahead of you tomorrow.

Love is the avenue we need to walk to develop spiritual perception.
When you make a conscious choice of loving more make sure your reason
for doing so is not motivated by your personal emotional desires.

Rather do so in order to assist in the activation of the divine flame
of creative intelligence that lives within everyone. When you
perceive the light within another, you are drawing on the strength of
your own inner light to do so. This, in turn, ignites the creative
flame within you and everyone’s life becomes enriched.

Many people today hold attachments to an outcome. They have a plan
with an expectation of what that plan will produce. If the expected
results are not met frustration and disappointment set in. Understand
that attachment to an outcome gives the ego power to control your
life. You are prompted to try again and again to acquire the desired
result. When we let go of our attachments to outcomes we surrender
our ego to the spirit and everything works out appropriately
Spiritual perception is known and understood when we do for the joy
of doing. Joy awakens light and light transforms insecurities. This
transformation awakens love the true quality of the soul.

Ten Ways to Handle Adversity

We’ve all experienced difficult times, often through events and
circumstances that are outside our control. Here are ten suggestions
for dealing with adversity.

1. Take Responsibility: Assume an I can do something attitude rather
than pointing fingers and placing blame. If nothing else, control
your own response to the situation.

2. Limit the Focus: Don’t let the problem become all-encompassing.
When you compartmentalize the difficulty you can focus on a solution.

3. Be Optimistic: The ultimate belief in life as positive, even with
hard times and troubles will result in positive behaviors and
positive actions.

4. Think Creatively: Approach the problem from new and different
directions. Trust your creativity.

5. Have Courage: Having courage doesn’t mean you are not afraid, it
means you don’t let fear get in the way of doing what you need to do.

6. Take Action: Rather than rolling over in the midst of hard times,
determine action and do it.

7. Take The Long Range View: Remember that “this too shall pass.”
Recount other times when you have overcome challenges.

8. Maintain a Sense of Humor: Laughter always helps ease our

9. Get Support: There is no need to do it alone. Always remember that
you and spirit are going through this situation together!

10. Don’t Quit: Among all the human qualities that allow us to
overcome adversity, persistence may be the greatest.

Contact Points

There are three basic levels in the human body. The mental, the
emotional and the physical. Since all three bodies need to be
operating with optimum efficiency for balance to be maintained we
must energize all of these bodies equally. Each of these bodies has a
contact point in which energies of a healing and balancing nature can
pass most directly to each of these three levels.

The mind, in its essential vibration, is closest to the head of the
human body. The eyes and the ears are the entry points for energy
intended to heal or help the mental facet of being. The eyes view
that which they witness and perception is acquired. The ears are the
principal receivers of the spoken word, which stimulates the mental

Loving or unloving emotions are centered in the heart. When a person
has a heart attack the pain often extends along the arms. This
indicates that both on a physical and emotional level the heart, arms
and hands are linked. The contact point for the heart is the palms of
the hands.

The human being also has a physical body and a physical level of
experience. He/she is in direct contact with the earth itself.. The
soles of the feet are the contact points for overall physical well-
being. If you experience difficulties in the mental, emotional or
physical parts of your being, spend a moment energizing the relevant
contact point for that area. Doing this daily can make a difference
in how you feel on all levels.

Crystals Associated with our Power Center

The Solar Plexus Chakra represents Fire, Ego identity, oriented to
self-definition. This chakra is known as the power chakra, located in
the solar plexus. It rules our personal power, will, and autonomy, as
well as our metabolism. When healthy, this chakra brings us energy,
effectiveness, spontaneity, and non-dominating power. The color for
this chakra is yellow. Yellow is very good for getting in touch with
your power and to build confidence. It is your center of will.

Consider some of the following stones when working with self-power:

Amber, Citrine, Tiger’s Eye, Topaz, Yellow Sapphire, Sulfur, Yellow

Andrew Pacholyk, MS, L.Ac
Therapies for healing
mind, body, spirit

How to Choose a Crystal for Someone Else
by Heather Askinosie

It has long been said that to give is better than to receive. While it’s true that there is nothing quite like seeing the face of someone you love light up at the sight of your gift, the stress of scouring stores and online products for that perfect gift can make the act of giving less fun than it should be. It’s undoubtedly this dilemma which leads many to have the same thought cross their mind this time of year: But, how to choose a crystal, the right crystal, for someone else? Like purchasing the right crystal for yourself, it’s all about intuition. Though all gifting requires intuitive choices, gifting someone a crystal also forces you to contemplate your relationship with that person, what’s going on in their life, and what energy you think can best improve their spirit. Though this process is more in depth than simply picking up a bottle of their favorite perfume, it can also be more redeeming to know the love and meaning that went into the crystal you selected for that person.

—Where to Start: How to Choose a Crystal—

The number one thing that you have to do when preparing to give a crystal as a gift, is to take a moment to think about that person. What’s going on in their life? If you could infuse their life with any energy, what would it be? Do you want to give them something that symbolizes your relationship together? This gift should be given with intention, so it’s important that you select it with intention as well.

—Rose Quartz for Lovers, Nurturers + Light Hearted Spirits—

The people who would benefit from receiving rose quartz are endless because rose quartz is the gift of love—and who couldn’t use more of that? Rose Quartz is the perfect gift to give to someone in your family, or to someone who you consider as close as family. This stone infuses bonds with loving energy, so if you’re looking to show your love for your mother, your sister or your best friend, you can’t do better than rose quartz crystal. It’s also a great stone for women who have recently given birth, as it lends love, compassion and patience to their nurturing journey.

For those people in your life who are looking for love, the gift of rose quartz can provide reassurance of the love they possess and should have for themselves. This stone helps to attract the energy of love in ways we never expect, so it can be just the energy to give someone to uplift their
perspectives on love and life.

—Create a Custom Crystal Pouch—

This is the ultimate way to create a custom gift for the crystal lover in your life. Take a small gift bag, and fill it with tumbled stones that you feel your loved one will connect to. These can be stones that you’ve used to get you through difficult situations, or new stones that you’ve bought specifically for this person. A bag of crystals empowered by your loving intention is perfect for the friend who likes to work with crystal grids, or for a niece or nephew just getting into collecting rocks.

How to Choose a Crystal for Someone Else
—Selenite for Meditators + Light Seekers—

If you know someone who’s been stressed out this year, and you’re wondering how to choose a crystal they’d benefit from, gifting them balance and hope in the form of selenite can be just what their spirit needed to relax and look forward to the year ahead. Helping to bring blessings of harmony and purification, selenite cleanses and grounds the soul with positivity. That’s what makes it such a go-to stone for those who meditate. Through deepening one’s meditation, selenite harmonizers can restore the spirit to its highest potential.

It’s important, when gifting someone a pair of selenite harmonizers, to tell them how to use and program their new stones. With one harmonizer in each hand while sitting or lying down, they can meditate, set intentions or just relax and cleanse the spirit. Before giving the gift of selenite harmonizers, be sure to set your intention for the stones, by stating aloud: May these always bring light and positivity to soul of [insert name of loved one].

—Pyrite for Money Makers—

For that person who’s always handled themselves like a boss, enhance the power of their potential with pyrite. As a bringer of abundance, the energy that pyrite inspires can infuse a loved one with the energy they need to break through into a new stage of success. Beneficial for anyone looking to make large strides in their personal progress, pyrite will help those tuned into its energy to stop thinking and start doing!

—Amethyst for Relaxation Lovers—

Help a loved one to clear the air, and find comfort within their mind and space. If you have a friend who has trouble listening to their gut, and doing what they need for themselves, amethyst can be the perfect energy to embolden their convictions. This happy stone beckons the soul to find its place solace. For those needing to relax and discover their joy, the gift of amethyst can’t arrive soon enough. Amethyst absorbs the negative energy surrounding it, and radiates out purified positivity. So for the friend whose environment could use a beautiful energy purifier, amethyst is your go-to stone.

—Amazonite for Artists + Creative Spirits—

Amazonite boosts creative output and assists in toppling those stubborn creative blocks, which makes it the perfect stone for artists. Any friend whose creativity you’d like to support and enhance will appreciate the amazonite meaning. With a fluid essence, amazonite promotes a flow of energy, thoughts, ideas and communication. By soothing the mind and spirit, amazonite introduces a tranquility that helps creative spirits to forget about their blocks and just breathe deeper.

—Fluorite for Blessings—

Fluorite is the perfect gift to give the host of a party. If you want to bestow blessings and positivity on a home and host, gift them a fluorite point. It’s more unique than a bottle of wine, and something that they can continue to enjoy in the decor of their home for years to come.

Heather Askinosie is a crystal expert and leading influencer on the power of crystals, Feng Shui and holistic healing.


Words Have Weight
By Madisyn Taylor

The more conscious we become, the more we deepen our relationship to the words we choose to use.

Words carry energy and this gives language its power and its potential to heal or hurt. Most of us can remember a time that someone sent a word our way, and it stuck with us. It may have been the first time we received a truly accurate compliment, or the time a friend or sibling called us a name, but either way it stuck. This experience reminds us that what we say has weight and power and that being conscious means being aware of how we use words.

The more conscious we become, the more we deepen our relationship to the words we use so that we speak from a place of actually feeling what we are saying. We begin to recognize that words are not abstract, disconnected entities used only to convey meaning; they are powerful transmitters of feeling. For the next few days, you might want to practice noticing how the words you say and hear affect your body and your emotional state. Notice how the different communication styles of the people in your life make you feel. Also, watch closely to see how your own words come out and what affect they have on the people around you.

You may notice that when we speak quickly, without thinking, or rush to get our ideas across, our words don’t carry the same power as when we speak slowly and confidently, allowing those receiving our words time and space to take them in. When we carefully listen to others before we speak, our words have more integrity, and when we take time to center ourselves before speaking, we truly begin to harness the power of speech. Then our words can be intelligent messengers of healing and light, transmitting deep and positive feelings to those who receive them.

Andrew Pacholyk, MS, L.Ac
Therapies for healing
mind, body, spirit


Returning to Creative Dreams
By Madisyn Taylor

Take the time to reclaim your creativity, and watch your life blossom as a result.

As children, many of us entertained fantasies or even goals of being an actor, singer, dancer, artist, or musician. In some cases, we received enough encouragement to develop our abilities in those creative arenas, but somewhere along the way we stopped. This stopping may have been due to circumstances beyond our control or to our own unconscious acts of self-sabotage. Being creative can be scary in a world that seems to value logic over imagination and practicality over dreaming. We can forgive ourselves for shutting down or turning our attention away from our inner artist, but perhaps we can also take steps to reclaim our dreams.

In certain times and places, developing a creative ability was considered an important part of being a well-rounded human being. It was not necessary to be a professional or a masterly genius, because the act of creativity was valued in and of itself. It gifts are manifold–from the sheer pleasure of allowing our imaginations free reign to sharing and enjoying the fruits of our labor. Children share drawings and songs freely, without self-consciousness, and there is no reason why we cannot do the same thing. You may already be remembering some lost form of expression, such as making jewelry or writing songs. Your soul may be responding with an energetic lift as it feels its way back to a time when it was allowed to express itself freely. Your brain, on the other hand, may be throwing up obstacles, like the idea that you are too old or do not have the time.

The truth is, you are not too old, and if you have time to pick up a pen, you have time to make a doodle or write a haiku. Recognize that the obstacles you find before you have arisen from a place of fear and that they will wane in power every time you do something creative. Each creative act takes you deeper into a realm of beauty and magic, a realm that you have every right to return to and reclaim.


American Scene
Stephen Halpert
The Time Machine, Part 1

Hiram Case climbed up the cellar stairs into his kitchen. “It’s finished,” he said to his wife Emily. “I’ve done the best I could.”
Emily turned and smiled. “What is it this time? The electronic banana peeler you talked about? Or something like that fancy device you invented to remove seeds from watermelon? Too bad they stopped growing them with seeds. Or the ingrown toenail remover that almost amputated my big toe?”
Hiram said. “Look at Edison. He didn’t exactly win hands down every time.”
“Yes, dear.” She patted his shoulder. “I’m sure Mrs. Edison was a very kind and patient wife. At least as patient as I try to be. If you’d just once invent something that would help pay some bills.” Her voice trailed into loving hopelessness.
“This time I hope I have for sure. Come to the basement and I’ll show you.”
“Show me what?”
“My time machine, it seems to work. At least the apple disappeared and that was a good sign.”
“I hope you sent it all the way back to the Garden of Eden.”
“Faith, Emily, Faith. That’s the backbone of every inventor’s wife.”
Certainly she knew Hiram was a genius. Enough of their friends agreed for there to be more than just some truth to it.
“Come down with me. And on the way, think where you might like to go.”
“Go where?” She took off her apron.
“And bring your pocket book. There’s no telling where you might end up. And it never hurts to have a little extra money.”
“Are you serious?”
“Oh yes. Not only will you travel in time but the navigation system should have pinpoint accuracy.”
Emily smiled, turned off the stove, reached for her purse and followed Hiram down the cellar stairs. In the basement she saw what appeared to be an oversized steamer trunk coiled in wires, fancy colored knobs and dials.
“This is it.” Hiram said proudly. “And I’ve already tested it. The apple and orange both disappeared.” He pointed to a puffy cushion placed where cardboard drawers were once stacked. “Now get comfy. And tell me when and where in time you’d like to go.” He looked at her expectantly.
Emily sighed. Best to just play along with him she thought. At least the cushion was relatively comfortable and she had enough money to afford a cab home. “How about last year’s Columbus Day Sale at Grump’s Department Store. They had a pair of shoes I should have bought.”
“Grumps it is,” Hiram twisted the dials.
Emily kissed him and got comfortable. What some women do for their husbands, she thought.
Hiram closed the trunk, began to turn a series of dials and pushed several buttons. The machine began to shake like a washing machine. He heard whirring noises, then silence. He opened it. Emily was gone.”
He had an awful thought: “Oh wait,” he said. “How do I get her back? I hadn’t considered that.”
Not sure what to do, he called the police.
Shortly, two cruisers pulled into his driveway and three policemen rushed into his house.
“She’s gone,” Hiram said. “She sat in my latest invention and disappeared.”
The policemen carefully scrutinized Hiram. “You two have a big fight?” One asked.
“And then you killed her and destroyed her body?” Another suggested.
“But the guilt was too much,” the Sergeant added. “And in desperation reported it. Isn’t that the way it happened?”
“No!” Hiram insisted. “Not at all. I love Emily.”
“Then where is she?” The Sergeant asked.
“I’m not sure,” Hiram said. “She wanted to go to last year’s Columbus Day sale at Grumps. Said something about wanting a pair of shoes.” Hiram looked concerned.
The policemen eyed the steamer trunk with its wires and dials. “What is that?”
“A time machine.” Hiram said. “It works, I just don’t know how to bring her back.”
“Bring her back to life you mean,” one persisted. “After you murdered her.”
“I did no such thing,” he said. “I love my wife.”
“And just what is this thing?” the Sergeant asked.
“I told you it’s a time machine.”
“And where did it come from?”
Hiram looked indignant. “I built it.”
“Hiram!” Emily came down the basement stairs carrying a bag from Grumps.
She looked at the police. “What are they doing here? Are you all right Hiram? Or are you in trouble?”
“I’m fine,” Hiram said. “They accused me of murdering you. You got your shoes?”
“Well you got me there a day early but when I told the manager I came in a time machine he gave me the sales price.”
The Sergeant frowned. “If you went back to Grumps a year ago, how did you get here now?”
“I thought real hard about my house,” she said. “Then I gave the address to the taxi driver, got in and here I am.”
“Yeah. Right. She went back in time? How do you expect us to believe that?”
“I’ll prove it to you.” Hiram said. “One of you get in and tell me where you want to go.”
“To see the Red Sox win the World Series in 2004,” said the Sergeant.
“Get in then,” said Hiram.
The Sergeant squeezed onto the cushion. Hiram closed the door and fiddled with the dials. Again sounds of a washing machine at full tilt filled the room.
(To be continued)

A Joyful Cup!
by Crooked Bear Creek Organic Herbs

With our non-stop, busy lives, it’s hard to find a quiet moment to relax and recharge. But even the practice of pouring a cup of tea can bring peace of mind – especially with the right herbs. Whether you take your tea at high noon or prefer a bedtime brew, these garden herbs provide the perfect mood-boosting cuppa.

Making and sipping a cup of tea is one of the easiest and most enjoyable self-care rituals. In fact, studies show that simply holding a warm cup {regardless of its contents} makes people friendlier and perceive the world in a more optimistic light. Add to that cup some relaxing and restorative teas, and the effects become even more powerful. As many gardeners will attest, stepping out into one’s very own backyard to harvest herbs for that cup of tea furthers a connection with nature, and you discover how deeply enjoyable plant empowerment can be. Looking for a tasty tea featuring herbs you can grow easily in your yard to soothe frayed nerves, help you sleep, or improve your energy? Here are some of my absolute favorites.

Holy Basil {Ocimmum tennuiflorum, syn. O. sanctum}
Also called tulsi, holy basil fits almost any niche you might need for your nervous-adrenal system. Aromatic and delicious with heady notes of clove, mint, and bubblegum, holy basil lends itself fresh or dry to hot and cold water. It quickly calms but gently energizes, with effects that improve if you sip it regularly. As a stress-busting adaptogen, tulsi helps modulate the stress hormone cortisol, which also helps lower and balance blood sugar. The aromatics improve focus, lift the spirits, and ease anxiety. It blends well with other herbs too: peppermint for a perk, lemon balm for relaxation after dinner, rose to nourish the heart and spirit, and green tea for energy and stable blood sugar with a meal. Grow it as you would culinary basil: primarily as an annual in good soil with regular moisture, good drainage, and full sun. An Indian herb, it thrives in hot weather and tolerates containers. Harvest regularly, pinching back and using those prolific flowering stalks. Various species and varieties can be used interchangeably. The Kapoor/temperate {and often unnamed} variety grows most vigorously; new evidence suggests that it’s actually a variety of O. africanum, but most seed sellers still label it as O. sanctum. Homegrown or direct-from-the-farm dried tulsi is vastly superior to what is commonly sold in stores.

Lemon Balm {Melissa officinalis}
This is one of the most popular medicinal herbs cultivated in the garden – and for good reason: the perennial grows prolifically and has many uses, and it’s one of the most-revered nervine herbs to nourish and support the nervous system. It quickly eases anxiety and calms frayed nerves, agitation, hyperactivity, anger, and hyper-vigilance, yet it doesn’t over-sedate during the daytime and also uplifts the spirits, gladdens the heart, and improves focus. Studies have found it useful for memory, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder {ADHD}, and cognitive decline in children to seniors. Fresh or dry, hot or cold, lemon balm’s nice on its own, but tastes better and is more effective in combination with other herbs: holy basil for a calm-alert sate, mint for a pick-me-up, lemongrass or lemon verbena for lemony flavor, skullcap, and passionflower for sleep.

For tea: Dry lemon balm carefully – in a single layer or hanging with good airflow and not too much heat. It loses its lemon flavor pretty quickly once dried. Commercial dried lemon balm pales in comparison to home-grown or direct-from-the-farm.

Ashwagandha {Withania somnifera}
Compared to the other herbs mentioned in this article, ashwagandha takes a bit more time to grow and yields a smaller harvest because we use the roots. Taken daily, the adaptogen promotes deep energy and the strength, vitality {and yes, libido} of a stallion. It gently boosts thyroid function and also acts as a nervine. Some find it helps sleep. Simmer it with chai spices for tea or add the powder to hot milk with honey and nutmeg.

This Ayurvedic Indian herb prefers hot, sunny, somewhat dry spots with minimal competition from other plants. The size it reaches is a good indicator of how big the root harvest will be. Dig the roots in fall of the first year in cooler climates {it won’t survive winter} or wait until the second autumn in warmer zones 8 and up.

For tea: Scrub the roots clean in cold water, chop with clippers, and dry them in a single layer in a warmish spot with good ventilation or a dehydrator. It stinks as it’s drying, but the odor mellows with time. Once it’s dry, you can powder it by grinding it in a bullet blender and sifting through a fine-mesh strainer. Use caution if you have a hyperthyroid disease or are sensitive to nightshade family plants like potatoes and tomatoes.

Gotu Kola {Centella asiatica}
This plant hails from India and Sri Lanka, where it thrives in hot, soggy, rich soil in dappled sun. You can plant it as an annual or keep it in a pot to winter indoors, being mindful to water regularly. Gotu kola offers subtle yet profound benefits that accumulate when taken routinely for months at a time, particularly in high doses {up to an ounce per day}. It has gentle stress-relieving adaptogen properties, eases anxiety and jumpy nerves, but is most popular for its cognition-boosting and nerve-restoring effects. Rumor has it that the elephant’s diet of Gotu kola is why the animal has such a great memory! You can cook it as a leafy green, eat it fresh, or juice it. which is popular in its native lands.

For tea: While the flavor isn’t amazing, it’s bland enough to add to more palatable herbs like mint, holy basil, and lemon balm or broths cooked with garlic and onions. Use the leaves and all aerial parts.

Rose {Rosa spp.}
The petals add a splash of color to tea blends to lift the spirits and encourage us to be kinder to ourselves. The aromatics of these petals extract well in cold water or seltzer {let a full fresh blossom or two steep for several hours}. I infuse them in a glass bottle so I can “stop and see and sip the roses” when I’m busy, stressed, and overworked. Any rose that smells and tastes good and isn’t sprayed with chemicals will do – typically these include wild and heirloom species such as the moderately invasive seaside {R. rugosa} as well as Damask {R. damascena}, apothecary {R. gallica var. officinalis}, and cabbage {R. centifolia} rose. You can forage invasive multiflora rose {R. muliflora}, but do not plant it.

For tea: Harvest buds, full blossoms, and fresh petals, preferably early in the day before the heat has cooked out the aroma. Dry buds and petals for tea in a single layer with minimal heat.

Skullcap {Scutellaria lateriflora}
This wild plant of the woodland water’s edge {growing among wild mint and bugleweed} prefers slightly damp, rich-to-sandy soil in partial to full sun. It can be a bit persnickety in the garden with good and bad years. When it thrives, harvest in abundance because it’s so useful, and good-quality skullcap is rare on the market. Skullcap has relaxing nervine properties well-suited for people who feel edgy, anxious, or hyperactive, as if their nervous system is in overdrive – when scents, sounds, and even touch make everything worse. When the sound of your bed partner’s breathing keeps you from sleeping and oncoming headlights make your migraine feel like someone’s stabbing you through the eyes – there’s skullcap. Combined with more sedative herbs like passionflower, it helps lull you to sleep. Paired with the gentle energizing and focus effects of holy basil or lemon balm, it makes a lovely tea in daytime blends for anxiety. Occasionally {but rarely}, regular use can aggravate depression or prove too sedating for daytime use.

For tea: Harvest once aerial parts are in bloom and dry carefully to avoid blackening, placing them in a thin layer or hanging in a place with good airflow and not too much moisture or heat {ideally in the dehydrator at 95-100 degrees F or so}.

Passionflower {Passiflora incarnata}
Coming from the Southeast, where the sprawling vine can be a bit of a pest, passionflower produces stunning, otherworldly flowers, inspiring missionaries to name it after the Passion of Christ. Passionflower’s aerial parts cool, calm, and sedate, and it’s one of our safest and most effective sleep ease {much more pleasant tasting than valerian and hops!}, easily enhanced with some spearmint, lemongrass, holy basil, or other flavorful herbs.
Also, consider a little passionflower solo or in blends for anxiety, anger, frustration, agitation, and stress-induced hypertension – just be aware that some people find it too sedating for daytime use. You can cultivate passionflower in a warm full- to part-sun spot with decent moisture and good soil, allowing it to amble along a fence, arbor, or trellis. It does well in pots and greenhouses too and can overwinter indoors in cooler climates. As a perennial, zone 6 is the edge of its winter-hardy range.

For tea: Simply prune back vines with happy-looking, vibrant growth, ideally in flower. Use the entire vine – stem, leaves, and flowers. Dry on low heat in a dehydrator to ensure thorough drying of the flower middles or use fresh in other recipes like tinctures.

Flavor With Purpose
Alongside your “relax and revive” teas, consider planting tried-and-true flavorful herbs. Though they’re not as specific for the nervous system, they do impact your mood and the medicinal activity of your blends, and they’ll also make them more delicious.

Mint {Mentha spp.} has probably already tucked itself into some corner of your garden – or threatened to take it over with its ambitious root runners. Perhaps no other herb is as useful for delicious tea blends, hot or cold. Peppermint {M. x piperita} and chocolate mint {a peppermint variety} provide perky and alert properties backed by science. Spearmint {M. spicata} more gently supports cognition and focus and makes a nice flavoring agent for sleep blends as well. Use apple mint {M. suaveolens} much like spearmint, and feel free to play around with other mints, such as pineapple mint {which is quite tasty but may not survive cold winter climates} and banana mint. Bear in mind it spreads and can also interbreed into bland minty hybrids. Consider slowing it down by planting it in big pots or out-of-the-way spots, keeping different species a bit spaced apart.

Rosemary {Rosmarinus officinalis}, like peppermint, offers perky-alert properties but also has a bit of a bitter, piney, resinous edge that adds complexity to tea blends. It’s fine dried but tastes better fresh.
Lemon verbena {Aloysia citrodora} and Lemongrass {Cymbopogon citratus} taste vastly better than lemon balm, adding a pleasant lemon flavor to tea blends that lift and calms the spirits. Lemon verbena resembles lemon cake {especially if combined with vanilla bean or extract and steeped in not-quite-boiling water}, whereas you may recognize lemongrass’s tropical flavor from Thai soups and curry. Of all the lemony herbs, lemongrass holds its flavor the longest but will still lose quite a bit after a year. For tea, dry the grassy tops and then cut them into small pieces with sharp scissors. Freeze the tightly rolled bottom stalks for cooking, cordials, seltzer, and broth. I prefer to keep dried lemon verbena leaves whole to hold their flavor longer, adding a few to my teapot, water bottle, or mug. Both are nice with lemon balm, sleep blends, green tea, or vanilla. Grow these tropical herbs in a pampered garden bed or large pot with full sun, warmth, good soil, and regular water. They don’t like to be crowded by other plants. Be aware that lemongrass can give you a nasty paper cut.

Korean licorice mint {Agastache rugosa} and Anise hyssop {A. foeniculum} grow into beautiful purple flower spikes that self-seed all over the garden, and they’re so yummy, pretty, and easy enough to pull up or move around that you won’t mind. The two are nearly indistinguishable, with a flower profile ranging from honey-fennel to fennel-mint. Medicinally, this mint-family herb soothes the throat and tummy and has gentle nervine, calming activity. It tastes delicious with almost any other green, leafy herb. It will grow in part shade to full sun, good soil and moderate moisture are most important for big, happy plants. The short-lived perennial will die off after a few years, but by then the babies will be ready to take off.

Harvesting, Drying and Storing Herbs
Harvest leaves {with or without flowers} when the plant looks, smells, and tastes its best, usually just before or after it begins flowering. Cut the top one-third to two-thirds of the plant, making sure to leave at least a few sets of leaves behind. They’re best trimmed right above a leaf node, but you can also grab a bunch of plant material together and give it a “bad haircut.” Keep them on the stem for drying. You can cut lemongrass’s grassy tops for tea this way or if you want to also harvest the thick stalks for other recipes, cut up to one-third of the plant right at the base.

Dry your herbs in a thin or single layer with good airflow until they’re crispy dry. You can use a dehydrator {set to 95-110 degree F for best results}, but good dehydrators are expensive and fill up quickly. Alternately, air-dry in bundles or on hanging screens {I love mt iPomelo hanging herb-drying rack}, but humidity may prevent your herbs from getting totally dry. You can also loosely pack a brown paper bag with herbs, cinch shut with a clothespin, and leave it inside the car windshield on a warm, sunny day {if it’s really hot, place it in a shady spot, a clean trunk, and/or crack the windows}. Sensitive herbs like basil, lemon balm, and skullcap may blacken and degrade via the brown bag method due to the heat and reduced airflow; use a dehydrator instead or air-dry and then crisp in the car if needed when the herb is mostly dry.

Once your herbs are totally crisp-dry {no bendy stems}, you can move the leaves from the stems by stripping with your hands or rubbing over a screen. Store in a clean, air-tight glass jar in a cool, dark, dry spot like a cabinet or pantry.

Tea Blends To Try
” Sleep Tea: 1/2 teaspoon each passionflower, skullcap, lemon balm, and spearmint steeped in hot water for 15 minutes in a 4- to a 6-ounce teacup and sweetened with honey.
” Perky Alert Blend: 1/2 teaspoon each peppermint, spearmint, lemon balm, and Gotu kola plus a sprig of fresh rosemary steeped in 16 ounces of hot water for 15 minutes.
” Happy Day Infused Water: A few sprigs of fresh holy basil and one or two rose blossoms in a glass bottle of cold water, steeped for 2 or more hours {holy basil and rose also blend well hot and/or dry}.
” Ashwagandha Golden Milk: Simmer 1 teaspoon ashwagandha roots in 16 ounces of hot whole milk, oat milk, or almond milk with 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder and a pinch each of nutmeg and cardamom for 15 minutes. Strain and add honey or maple syrup to taste.
” Ashwagandha Chai: Simmer 1 teaspoon ashwagandha with 2 cinnamon sticks, 2 cardamom pods, 1-star anise, and 5 cloves for 20 minutes. Strain and add milk/cream and sweetener if desired.
” Happy Holy Lemon Tea: Combine equal parts lemon balm and holy basil fresh or dry in hot or cold water and let steep for 15 minutes. Exact quantities do not matter; it comes out nicely no matter what.
” Good Morning, Tulsi: 1/2 teaspoon each holy basil and green tea {preferably jasmine green}, with a few optional lemon verbena leaves, steeped in 12 ounces of near-boiling water for 4 minutes.


Weekly Horoscopes Beginning Sunday, 21 July 2019

If you`re born within cusp period (16 to 26 of any month); you`re advised to read horoscopes of both signs covered by that period. You`re in the border; you may have influences from houses within those signs.

Outlines are longer versions; consists of every possible detail of everyday and based on three parts of each sign: 1st, 2nd & 3rd Decan; that is, any of three divisions of 10° within a sign of the zodiac. Even if you know or don`t know your Decan; I recommend, please read all three Decan.

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Personal theme: I am!!
Fire & cardinal sign: March 21 — April 19

Your horoscope for this week:

Having battled to turn ideas you`re passionate about into plans, you`re in no mood to discuss further changes. Not only do you have no choice, once you learn more about these, you`ll realise they`re a slightly different version of what you`ve been working towards for ages. Minor issues worry you; but, for now, focus on the big picture. The more you learn, the more excited you`ll be.

You will find it fun and rewarding to put a talent that has been going rusty, to practical use. Once you get into the swing of this unexpected opportunity you might decide to spend more time developing a skill you haven`t used for a while. Double check anything that might be open to muddles or mistakes. In all communications, take nothing and no one for granted and you will have everything covered to sidetrack and even avoid a misunderstanding.

Whether at work or at play, creative juices flow and you might also form a new working partnership. The interesting thing about this is that this alliance – most likely with a Scorpio (or someone with extraordinary financial skills and a proven track record) could go far. Their insights and understanding as to how an operation works could take you from slow to fast lane very quickly. The art may be for you to say little and listen a lot midweek. With both the Sun and Moon passing through fire signs (and the Moon actually in your own sign from Monday through to Wednesday), the temptation to rush headlong into a new project will likely be compelling. Hold back if you can: it`s likely that a better deal can be negotiated by that Scorpio (?)or certainly someone with considerable business acumen.

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Personal theme: I have!!
Earth & fixed sign: April 20 — May 20

Your horoscope for this week:

Tempting as it is to either battle to overcome obstacles or, alternatively, try to strike an accord with those who you disagree with, you`re urged to take it slowly. Unlikely as it seems there`ll be changes, still less a solution everybody can live with, sudden developments in early August could do the trick. For now, focus on decluttering arrangements so you can move swiftly when the time comes.

You just want to have some fun and to enjoy life more. Clear your schedule of obligations. If you are working, take some time off to recharge. Listening to music or a relaxing audio book are good ways to unwind. A friend is thinking about turning a hobby into a money-making venture and this could get you wondering whether it might be worth trying to do something similar yourself.

You may remember that Mercury is presently retrograde in one of the Water signs. It`s entirely possible that a colleague is having second thoughts about a plan but doesn`t yet know how to extricate themselves from what they believe to be a tricky situation. In discussing options, you could come to a curious realisation yourself.. This need has nothing to do with their business whatsoever. Yet through these conversations you could alight on a plan that has fantastic potential. Launching this around the Last Quarter Moon in your sign on Thursday – and provided that it`s a short-term project and will conclude before your birthday next year,- should certainly be considered. It is perhaps as important that you also tie up the loose ends of anything begun in the last two years. Showing others that you can conclude projects with as much grace and enthusiasm as well as you begin them will surely get you noticed.

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Personal theme: I think!!
Air sign: May 21 — June 20

Your horoscope for this week:

Some would say that with your ruling planet Mercury retrograde, discussions about important matters are unlikely to achieve much. True, the confusion you`re facing won`t simply vanish; but a combination of worthwhile discussions and fortunate circumstances will turn the possibilities you`re discussing into solid plans, and possibly overnight. While you may not finalise plans now, you`ll have no doubts about it all working out as you hoped.

It may be necessary to make some personal phone calls during office hours. Take care your boss doesn`t find out. They won`t be happy if you`re using work time to plan your private life. You`re thinking about the future and summing a few things up in your mind. With a little extra effort, you should be able to introduce improvements into your life. All going well, you will be in for an entertaining ending to the week.

Your ruling planet, Mercury is retrograde but on Thursday aligns with Venus. Two other major aspects take place that same day with the combination suggesting that you might soon embark on a new financial partnership. If you`ve been involved in the process of buying and selling, then this could yet prove an important week too. At a slightly different level, you could give thought to savings and pension management. Also, alerted (most likely by someone born under one of the Cardinal signs of Aries, Cancer, Libra or Capricorn), you could become aware that an item or service has far more value than you had originally thought. This may be something to savour before you make a further plans. Note that Mercury doesn`t return to its retrograde degree until the middle of next month. It may be that between then and now, there is much paperwork and admin to resolve. Don`t rush this and be diligent – mistakes could prove expensive!

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Personal theme: I feel!!
Water & cardinal sign: June 21 — July 22

Your horoscope for this week:

Despite the intensity of the shake-ups triggered by early July`s Cancer eclipsed New Moon, you`ve dealt with each change, issue, question or, in some cases offers. You`re increasingly confident what will work and what may need more thought. Even more, as an intuitive water sign, you`re refusing to be rushed into plans you`re still unsure about. Be patient. They`ll come together but probably not until early August.

Make the most of any time available to enjoy the company of your closest friends. A neighbour will introduce you to someone you`ve always wanted to meet. Try to listen more than you speak, and you could learn something very interesting. Before acting on ideas that could affect your family situation, discuss these with your loved ones. You could be surprised by their feedback. Give some careful thought to what they say.

Before next weekend, Mercury and Venus align in your sign. That they do so coincidentally with two major aspects, suggests that this could be a key week in terms of developing your network. Others may well be talking about your many gifts and how these can be usefully employed. It seems likely that the end of July will mark a turning point. Property matters may well be involved. There`s also the issue of altered family dynamics and the potential for you to take on fresh responsibilities. Though those may be the last things on your mind (or want!), it`s probable that others feel you are best placed to nurture someone – most likely born under another Cardinal sign like your own, – as they negotiate opportunities for which they don`t as yet feel equipped. Amidst all this, there`s also high probability of someone you worked with in the past, renewing contact and asking about your availability for later in the year.

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Personal theme: I will!!
Fire & fixed sign: July 23 — August 22

Your horoscope for this week:

Looking back on the recent unsettling yet informative events, you`re recognising how much you learnt, dealt with and the unworkable arrangements you shed. This is a relief but you`re less clear what`s next. You may not be feeling patient but, ideally, you`ll wait until you`re benefitting from the insights that come with the Leo New Moon on 1 August. After that, things will be much clearer.

Negotiating a business deal won`t be easy. You may need to take a more hard-nosed stance. The last thing you want to do is play into someone else`s hands. Give others time to think through their options but don`t back down. You want to cut a deal that`s right for you. You enjoy your little pleasures and by taking some time out to indulge your sensual side, you will feel more relaxed and confident. It isn`t as if you haven`t worked hard for this.

It would be wholly understandable if you began the week feeling irritated. With both the Sun and Mars in your sign, at some level you may be anxious to get started on a project. The fact that others are looking backward and perhaps reassessing whether or not they have sufficient funds or energy to move forward will surely be exasperating. Yet before the weekend you could make a significant breakthrough. It`s then that both Mercury and Venus make alignment coinciding with a fabulous aspect between Mars (in your sign) and Jupiter. It may be that someone who`s been dragging their heels (possibly born under the sign of Cancer, but certainly a Water sign), comes up with a plan that is actually near genius strategy. This could be connected to property or asset management. Either way, you could soon move from what feels to be the slow to the fast lane.

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Personal theme: I analyse!!
Earth sign: August 23 — September 22

Your horoscope for this week:

No sign is better at examining a plan, project or, indeed a problem and knowing what`s needed. Still, you could struggle with confusion triggered by July`s two powerful eclipses and, the disarray that comes with your ruler Mercury`s retrograde cycle, until 1 August. While this slows progress, it`s the perfect time to declutter your life, especially of passions that really must become part of the past.

You and a partner have an important decision to make. Just don`t be in a rush and take your time to make up your mind. You will find out new things about yourself during a heart to heart conversation. An older relative will be asserting their independence. Even so, you know they are going to need some help fairly soon and whether or not they expect it from you, you are prepared for this.

Your ruling planet, Mercury is still retrograde and given its actual position, it would be understandable if you were slightly fretful. It`s probable though that you are over- worrying. Full facts may not be known for a couple of weeks yet. The art is likely to be to bide your time. In some ways, this is perhaps imperative. The weeks before your birthday is generally fragile for any sign. This though, is when you could incubate your thoughts for the coming year. Seeds planted through this period should prove super proof-fruitful in the early months of 2020. Given that so many people are apprehensive about future possibilities, your diligence in ensuring that paperwork is up-to-date and archived where appropriate could prove extra valuable. Indeed, it may be that you are asked to take part in a clearing up project during which you find hidden treasures.

———— ———– ———- ——— ——– ——- —— —– —- — — –

Personal theme: I balance!!
Air & cardinal sign: September 23 — October 22

Your horoscope for this week:

If you`ve been trying to keep certain tricky business arrangements afloat or, equally, dealing with stressful personal relationships, you`ll be both exhausted and wondering how it will all end. Actually, the outcome will be far better than you dare dream possible. The price, however, is patience. For now, discuss and deal only what you must. Sudden changes in early August will change everything, often overnight.

Although you are getting on well with everyone in a group effort, you aren`t making a lot of progress. Some people will prefer things to be well thought out and organised. Others just want to experiment and be spontaneous. It could be a case of too many cooks spoiling the broth. Curb an extravagant whim that might grip you later in the week as it won`t be wise to splash out without really thinking about it.

Mercury has returned to the career zone of your solar chart. It`s there until the middle of August. Refining, incubating and developing plans for the coming year will no doubt have considerable attention. In this you`ll likely be aided and abetted by those born under the Water signs of Cancer, Scorpio or Pisces. In their different ways, they could `hydrate` you. Meanwhile, it`s likely someone born under Leo whose creative talents will make extra-ordinary difference to what you achieved by the weekend. A major alliance looks set to form. The profitability of this may well prove exceptional. True, the whole world seems about to catch a financial chill once more. It`s probable though, that having assessed your position and underpinned it as best you can, that you could ride the next storm secure in the knowledge that this partnership is going places.

———— ———– ———- ——— ——– ——- —— —– —- — — –

Scorpio & Ophiuchus
Personal theme: I desire!!
Water & fixed signs: October 23 — November 21

Your horoscope for this week:

For weeks, if not months, you`ve been trying to avoid committing to changes you`ve regarded as overwhelming or which you feared would undermine your control in certain pivotal situations. Yet now events are giving you no choice. Actually, that`s best because those worrying changes are vital breakthroughs, although you won`t realise it until after everything is settled. Risky as plunging in seems, it`s the best solution.

Resist the urge to pick a quarrel just because things aren`t going your way. Be patient with people who get confused over the simplest request or instruction. A confusing muddle could lead to an interesting situation that could have unexpected consequences either good or bad. If you`re planning a journey with a friend, don`t gloss over expenses of additional tours and holiday extras. It would be better to agree on these and be honest about costs from the start.

You could form an extraordinary and strong alliance before next weekend: one that pushes you into a new routine altogether. True, you might not be able to push forward with career plans until the middle of August. It`s probable though that a strategy will be discussed. Recall that Uranus is travelling through your opposite sign and don`t underestimate the ability of others to astound you! Anticipate being attracted to those who are ready to do things differently. Though true, they probably need your insights as to why things have developed as they have. They might also need to tap into your undeniable instincts as to what others really, really want. It`s probable that you are building a power base (even unconsciously) and that the working bonds formed presently will give you armour in negotiations next month.

———— ———– ———- ——— ——– ——- —— —– —- — — –

Personal theme: I see!!
Fire sign: November 22 — December 21

Your horoscope for this week:

Usually, you`re the first to spot and take advantage of offers or new ideas, even those others question. Yet now it`s you who`s unsure whether to pursue what`s arisen. These events, triggered by the powerful link between Mars and your ruler Jupiter may seem overwhelming now. Take those first few steps, however, and you`ll wonder why you hesitated for even a moment.

Join in with group activities that make you feel alive and engaged. Whether these are sporting, or mental games is immaterial. What`s important is that you find something that appeals to your competitive side. You are feeling bright and alert and you will enjoy a challenge. Plans, proposals and propositions that come under discussion will need a quick response. If you hesitate, someone will think you aren`t interested, and an offer will go to someone else.

Recovery from last week`s antics could take until after the Last Quarter Moon on Thursday. It might also require and yes, not for the first time, for you to reschedule various events. Recall that Mercury is retrograde. You may need to revisit issues – most likely diet or time related; but yes, it`s also possible that a relative will require extra assistance. Irritating as all this may be at one level, there is potentially very good news on the horizon. A fabulous aspect between Mars and your ruling planet Jupiter, suggests that your quick spirits could be lifted considerably. It may be that a plan of action is exactly what you wanted to hear. Another possibility is that news regarding a place of further education or connected to long-distance travel, will inspire you to reach out and join forces. Indeed, an alliance formed before the end of the week may be the first signal of your career moving to new level altogether.

———— ———– ———- ——— ——– ——- —— —– —- — — –

Personal theme: I use!!
Earth & cardinal sign: December 22 — January 19

Your horoscope for this week:

Unsettling as the events triggered by the recent Capricorn eclipsed Full Moon may have been, you`ve long known something would have to give. Tempting as it is to discuss events in detail, with an eye to imposing order on this chaos, it`s far too early. For now, your time and effort are best focused on considering how to fit recent changes in with existing arrangements.

A colleague wants to see you fulfil your potential and they want to join forces with you. This could benefit you both in different ways. You have some great ideas and they will inspire you to turn these into reality. With their skills and your practical know how, you will be amazed by what can be achieved. Travel plans make you nervous and if you postpone a trip until the end of the month, you will feel you are doing the right thing.

You may recall that both Saturn and Pluto are travelling through your sign. As of the end of this year they will be joined by Jupiter – indicating that the cosmos has you in its sights! There`s likely potential for you to reach heights you didn`t even know existed. To do that requires preparation. Like someone attempting to conquer Everest, it`s essential that you have a good base and are well-informed. This week, adopting a strategic approach and yes, perhaps considering which courses and training programmes are optimal for you should have your attention. It`s also just possible that as an aside you will need to train others. Passing on information may be crucial. With Mercury retrograde in your opposite sign, yes, it`s possible you will feel you`re going back over old ground and that you`ve passed information on once before already. This time the people involved may be more willing to grasp concepts.

———— ———– ———- ——— ——– ——- —— —– —- — — –

Personal theme: I know!!
Air & fixed sign: January 20 — February 18

Your horoscope for this week:

It`s true, if you accept offers or join in with others` plans, you`ll relinquish a certain amount of your freedom. Wait or, worse, ignore these and you could miss a cycle of growth, which includes venturing into new, unfamiliar yet exciting territory. Usually, you`d chat with others and ask lots of questions. Things are moving too swiftly for that. It`s either get involved now or wonder what you bypassed.

A working relationship could blossom into romance. This might take others by surprise, but you will feel it is a natural progression of a good friendship. If you already have a partner, spontaneous acts will keep the passion between you alive. In a team effort, it will be your ideas that make the most positive impression of all. All agreements should be reached before Thursday or a confusing matter of detail could cause a hold up.

The Sun joins Mars in your opposite sign and you may feel that others are pushing you forward. Yet Mercury is retrograde and yes, you`re right it`s likely they haven`t thought things through. Emotions could be stirred. It might help to note that Thursday`s Last Quarter Moon accents the very base of your solar chart. Think about that: it`s your balance point. If the last couple of years have found you trying to get everything sorted asset management-wise etc, the fact that others are demanding that you go back, rethink and consider recent developments will surely be highly irritating. Yet it`s also possible that it is right to review what`s been archived, what`s been treasured and what really needs to be looked after from now on. Career wise, rethinking may be wise. It could be a couple of weeks yet before you move onto a different path, but, for now, you could review how you`ve got to where you are, and to what extent you`ve been deflected from what it is that you really, really want to do.

———— ———– ———- ——— ——– ——- —— —– —- — — –

Personal theme: I believe!!
Water sign: February 19 — March 20

Your horoscope for this week:

Recent discussions regarding intriguing ideas were exciting yet, for reasons you couldn`t pinpoint, made you wary. Now that it`s a week later, you`re wondering if the moment has passed. It hasn`t, but you must move swiftly, stating your interest clearly. This by no means constitutes a commitment, although once you`ve asked a few questions and learnt more, the odds are good you`ll want to make one.

Your sunny mood is contagious and there`s a favourable focus on friendship and romance. Friends love being around you and a partner wants to pamper you. How can you possibly refuse? Make friends with as many people as possible while you have the chance. You never know who will be in a position to help you over the months ahead. Someone who has good contacts in your field might offer you a job.

Before next weekend new and important alliances could form. The alignment of Mercury and Venus in other of the Water signs on Thursday, coincides with both a Last Quarter Moon and a fabulous aspect between Mars and one of your ruling planets, Jupiter. All this suggests that the vibration around you will be optimistic and different to the way it has been for the last couple of months. True, Mercury is retrograde, and it may be a couple of weeks before you can truly move forward. For now, it should be possible to arrive at an agreement with someone – not necessarily born under one of the Water signs, – but somebody who shares your sensitivity. It is perhaps noteworthy that a colleague, possibly born either under Leo or its opposite sign Aquarius, will look to you for guidance as they carefully consider changing career-stream altogether.

Posted by: arif uk <>


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By GrannyMoon Posted in Pagan

2 comments on “GrannyMoon’s Weekly Feast 21-28 July 2019

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