GrannyMoon’s Weekly Feast 27 Oct – 3 Nov 2019


Have a Safe and Happy Samhain!




The Season of the Witch!

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. ~GrannyMoon

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.

Dates of this calendar were devised by Robert Graves, 1895 – 1985

Month of Hathor begins 10/3 – 10/30
Month of Cailleach/Samhain begins 10/31 – 11/27
Celtic Tree Calendar: Ngetal (Reed) October 28 to November 24

Current Moon Phase: New Moon
The beginning of a new cycle.

Goddess Aspect: Maiden

Associated Goddesses: Artemis, Branwen, Eriu, Nymph, Epona
Magickal Attributes: Invoking. Workings On This Day Are For Starting New Ventures, New Beginnings, Love, Romance, Health Or Job Hunting.

Keywords for the New Phase Are: beginning, birth, emergence, projection, clarity. It is the time in a cycle that you are stimulated to take a new action. During this phase the new cycle is being seeded by your vision, inner and outer. Engage in physical activity. Spend time alone.

VISUALIZE your goals for the 29.6-day cycle ahead. New Moon workings can be done from the day of the new moon to three-and-a-half days after. The new moon is for starting new ventures, new beginnings. Also love and romance, health or job hunting.

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


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


The GoddessSchool
High Priestess Certification and Ancient Mystery Teachings
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High Priestess Mystery School Training
E-mail me ASAP for an application!


The Goddess School Grimoire
Hardcover: $39.45
Softback: $26.95
eBook (PDF): $6.25

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

WitchCrafting! Face to Face Classes at Noon on Saturdays! Teach a witch a spell and she can do that spell. Teach a witch the craft and she can do magick!

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

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

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, Myrrh
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


What’s Happening This Week!?!

Celebrate Witchy Week!
October 27: National Black Cat Day!
October 27: National Potato Day
October 27: American Beer Day
October 28: National Chocolate Day
October 29: National Cat Day
October 29: National Oatmeal Day
October 30: National Candy Corn Day
October 31: Samhain/Halloween!
November 1: National Cook For Your Pets Day
November 1: National Vinegar Day
November 1: All Saints Day
November 2: Day of the Dead


This Week’s Reading

Skull of Flowers
The Halloween Oracle

Creating through Ashes

To blossom and bloom
The work must be done
Through fire and ashes
Our fortune it comes.

We plant the seeds, we nourish them. Our lives change…sometimes radically. The Skull of Flowers shows that there is a phoenix-like energy through adversity.


Llewellyn’s Spell a Day

Put It in a Bucket
October 27, 2019 by Najah Lightfoot

Being witchy means being crafty, but what does one do with magickal leftovers from dolls, spells, and petition papers? How about storing them in a magickal bucket?

Many craft stores sell plastic buckets, which come in all sizes and shapes. Pick one that suits you. Have fun decorating it with witchy signs and symbols. When you have remnants from your workings, such as herbs, candle wax, papers, or hair, drop them in your magickal bucket.

Once your bucket is full, dig a hole on a dark witchy night and empty your bucket into the soil, preferably behind your home. Placing your remnants behind your home keeps your magick with you, protecting you. Cover the remnants with soil and say:

On this night and every night,
the earth keeps these things, to
her delight. She guards them
well, for no one tells, what lies
beneath the soil is hidden well!
Practical Tips for Every Day
October 26, 2019 by Estha McNevin

The season of transition is a great time to commit to new healthful habits. SAD, or seasonal affective disorder, is a seasonal circadian condition that causes irregular moods, depression, and unpredictable sleep patterns in those who are photosensitive to the decreasing amounts of daytime light.

If the darker months of our orbit really get you down, why not start soaking up the light today? Acquire a solar therapy lamp and begin meditating for five to ten minutes a day. Use the following Latin mantra to create a continuum of light within and all around you: Lux ad infinitum (“Light to infinity”).

This phrase’s deeper meaning is that light is eternal and continually present, even if invisible.

If you can commit yourself to worshiping light throughout the season of darkness by choosing self-care and personal wellbeing, then the darkness of the season can be overcome simply by following healthy daily habits.
Tree Spell for Stability
October 25, 2019 by Ember Grant

People often use trees as symbols of grounding—being rooted in one place as a metaphor for stability or connecting with the earth. In addition, there’s something comforting about the strength and endurance of trees, qualities people strive to cultivate. Use this spell to embody the stability of trees. They, too, can break under pressure—anything can—but they represent the ability to reach great heights while remaining connected to the earth. You can achieve what you reach for, but it’s important to stay grounded.

Sit near your favorite tree (or trees) and chant:

A sigh of leaves in rush of wind,
they’re stable yet they sway and bend.

Roots go deep and branches high,
growing, reaching earth and sky,
teaching us with every breeze
to learn the wisdom of the trees.

Valuing Diversity Spell
October 24, 2019 by Dallas Jennifer Cobb

On October 24, 1945, the United Nations ratified the UN Charter of Human Rights, which “reaffirmed faith in fundamental human rights, and dignity and worth of the human person.” The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was later adopted by the UN General Assembly in Paris on December 10, 1948.

Gather a nickel, dime, quarter, and dollar coin. Canadians add a toonie, Americans a half-dollar. Whatever you buy, let these coins remind you of our diversity as a human race. Every coin is different, and each has value. Be mindful. From now on, with each purchase and every coin you receive, make your pledge to value diversity:

I am my own member state of the
United Nations. I abide by the UN
Charter and promote “universal
respect for, and observance of, human
rights and fundamental freedoms for
all without distinction as to race,
sex, language, or religion.” So be it.

Read the charter at /universal-declaration-human-rights.
Send a Message
October 23, 2019 by Barbara Ardinger

There’s probably somebody you want or need to talk to. Wednesday (mercredi in French) is Mercury’s day, so ask the fleet-footed god of communication for help.

First, determine what you want or need to tell the person with whom you need to communicate. Write it down, “speaking” clearly and courteously. Set up your altar with a blue (the color of the throat chakra = communication) candle and a clean sheet of paper.

Using this paper, fold a paper airplane. Write your name, the name Mercury, and the name of the person you want to communicate with on one side of the paper airplane. Draw arrows from your name to Mercury to the person’s name. On the other side of the paper airplane, write what you want to say. Launch the paper airplane into the air. Visualize the person receiving your message and nodding. Visualize your conversation. When you finish, burn the airplane (safely) and bury the ashes outside.
Coconut Oil Cleanser
October 22, 2019 by Kate Freuler

Coconut oil has recently experienced an upsurge in popularity, especially in skin care. When applied to the face, it has antimicrobial properties and is said to cleanse the pores. Magically, coconut is associated with purification and protection, which makes it perfect for use as a practical beauty product and a magical ointment all in one.

Place some coconut oil in a special jar, along with a piece of quartz crystal. Quartz crystal is both purifying and empowering. On the outside of the jar, paint a symbol for spiritual purification, such as an outline of a drop of water. If possible, leave your tightly lidded jar outside during a rain shower to empower it with purification energy. If this isn’t possible, hold the jar under running tap water to imbue it with water’s ability to vanquish negativity. Every evening before bed, wash your face by applying a small amount of the coconut oil to your skin and then rinsing it off gently. As the coconut oil removes all the dirt, grime, and makeup from the day, it also cleanses away any negative energy that has clung to you.
Lavender-Mint Sereni-tea
October 21, 2019 by Storm Faerywolf

This is a simple witches’ brew to bring peace and happiness as well as prosperity and protection. Give some to everyone in your home to help promote a happy home environment.

For this tea you will need:
1/4 cup lavender flowers
1 cup mint leaves
4 cups water

Add the herbs to a pot and cover with water. Stirring clockwise with a wooden spoon, enchant the brew with the following incantation:

Lavender to calm and soothe,
Leaves of mint to clear the mind,
Prosperity with both combined,
Bring happiness into my home.

Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 15–20 minutes. Strain. Serve hot, or cool completely and then serve over ice. Add honey to sweeten, if desired.

Heartwings Love Notes 903 Beauty everywhere to see

Heartwings says, “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and available for every eye to see.”

The strong colors of fall make it my favorite time of year. The beauty of fall is spread over the roads as well as the hills and meadows like a cloak of brilliant hues, and the loveliness of it resonates in my heart. All during the months of fall when I am driving, I have to keep reminding myself to keep my eyes on the road, and when I have the treat of being driven, I am ever so grateful because then I can look at the landscape without fear of landing in a ditch.

Spring is lovely too. An astute observer once wrote that the colors of spring and fall were similar, only the colors of fall were more intense while the colors of spring exhibited a pastel palette. I hadn’t considered this before, however the next spring I observed the truth of what he was saying. Still, though the spring landscape is indeed lovely, for me it does not have the poignancy of fall. Spring heralds the warmth of summer, vacations, visits with friends and relations, and playtime for many. Fall, at least in the northern hemisphere, heralds the last of the warmth. Its bright days dwindle as the hours shorten. Soon winter will be upon us, and the bleakness of that landscape.

But wait, there is more. In winter, in contrast to the lush, rounded shapes of leaf burdened branches, the bare branches of the trees trace their design against the winter sky, revealing their essential shapes. Too, the dried weeds and grasses exhibit a delicacy that draws the eye, while once the flakes begin to fall their shadows decorate the snow drifts in subtle ways. Beauty does not always shout its presence, sometimes it whispers. The eye of the beholder needs to be attuned to the subtleties of beauty as well as to its obvious ones. If rather than turning my eyes inward with my thoughts I pay attention to what there is to see, I will find beauty everywhere I look regardless of the season.

May you be attuned to the beauty around you however it manifests.

Blessings and Best regards, Tasha Halpert <>

PS What to you is beautiful in any season? Do you have a favorite? I always enjoy your responses to my columns and I truly appreciate that you take the time to send me your thoughts.


Learning to Slow Down
By Madisyn Taylor

When we rush through our days and lives, we fail to notice the simple beauty of living.

Throughout our lives, we are taught to value speed and getting things done quickly. We learn that doing is more valuable than merely being, and that making the most of life is a matter of forging ahead at a hurried pace. Yet as we lurch forward in search of some elusive sense of fulfillment, we find ourselves feeling increasingly harried and disconnected. More importantly, we fail to notice the simple beauty of living. When we learn to slow down, we rediscover the significance of seemingly inconsequential aspects of life. Mealtimes become meditative celebrations of nourishment. A job well-done becomes a source of profound pleasure, no matter what the nature of our labors. In essence, we give ourselves the gift of time–time to indulge our curiosity, to enjoy the moment, to appreciate worldly wonders, to sit and think, to connect with others, and to explore our inner landscapes more fully.

A life savored slowly need not be passive, inefficient, or slothful. Conducting ourselves at a slower pace enables us to be selective in how we spend our time and to fully appreciate each passing moment. Slowness can even be a boon in situations that seem to demand haste. When we pace ourselves for even a few moments as we address urgent matters, we can center ourselves before moving ahead with our plans. Embracing simplicity allows us to gradually purge from our lives those commitments and activities that do not benefit us in some way. The extra time we consequently gain can seem like vast, empty stretches of wasted potential. But as we learn to slow down, we soon realize that eliminating unnecessary rapidity from our experiences allows us to fill that time in a constructive, fulfilling, and agreeable way. We can relish our morning rituals, linger over quality time with loved ones, immerse ourselves wholeheartedly in our work, and take advantage of opportunities to nurture ourselves every single day.

You may find it challenging to avoid giving in to the temptation to rush, particularly if you have acclimated to a world of split-second communication, cell phones, email and overflowing agendas. Yet the sense of continuous accomplishment you lose when you slow down will quickly be replaced by feelings of magnificent contentment. Your relaxed tempo will open your mind and heart to deeper levels of awareness that help you discover the true gloriousness of being alive.


How to Make Your Own Homegrown Smudge Sticks
Smudge stick herbs straight from the garden

Smudge sticks are tightly bound bundles of dried woody, resinous herbs, that are slowly burned as a way to purify and cleanse the air. While the roots of burning a homegrown smudge stick, or smudging, is in North American Native purification rites and ceremony, they can be used by anyone to bring the woody smell of the outdoors inside.

If you have a garden, chances are good that you have enough ingredients to make at least one homegrown smudge stick. The traditional and most popular herbs used in smudging ceremonies are white sage (Salvia apiana), Cedar (Thuja), Sweetgrass (Hierochloe odorata), sagebrush (Artemisia californica), and mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris). However, in my travels I have noticed that the smudging sticks available vary by region and there seems to be a lot of opportunity to branch out (so to speak) with other woody, resinous herbs including, but not limited to:

Thyme (Thymus vulgaris), lavender, yarrow, juniper, pine, mullein (Verbascum thapsus), rosemary, lemon balm (Melissa officinalis), mint (Mentha), Bee Balm (Monarda), and catnip (Nepeta cataria) to name a few.

On Growing White Sage in a Cold Climate: The other day I harvested a large white sage (Salvia apiana) plant that I have been growing in my garden’s sandy, dry bed. This plant is on the cusp of hardy in my area (I am in zone 5-5bish and its hardiness begins at zone 6), but this year I decided to free it from life in a pot to see how it did in the ground. Unlike the specimens I saw growing wild in Northern Mexico, my plant grew gigantic leaves, most likely the result of the wet season we’ve had. Still, it has a very strong, medicinal odour typical of the plant. I’ve left enough in that soil that should we have a mild winter, it just might live through to the next season.

When Choosing and Harvesting Herbs: Please be careful as some herbs — even the culinary types — don’t lend themselves well to burning and can be toxic or set off dangerous allergic or asthmatic reactions in some people. I have often seen common garden sage (Salvia officinalis) used to make smudges. Years ago I tried to burn some and did not like the smell. I have since read that this is not a safe herb to burn despite its safety in a host of other applications. When in doubt, burn a very small amount outdoors, in order to test the smell and indicate whether you might have a problem with a particular herb. I also have a dangerously strong negative reaction toyarrow, so again, please use caution with this herb.

Harvest herbs on a sunny and dry day. Moist herbs will grow mouldy inside the bundle where there is very little air. Pick herbs on the day you plan to use them; resinous herbs tend to dry very quickly and are nearly impossible to wrap tightly once dry. A final note that when harvesting from the wild please leave enough plant behind that it may live on happily and healthfully. Use a sharp knife or clippers to cut stems and never dig up the root.

Choosing String: Remember that anything you use to bind the bundle will eventually burn so it is advisable to stick with natural materials that will not give off a toxic fume or compete with the smudge smells. I try to use as little string as possible to avoid creating a strong burning string smell. I suggest using thin, organic cotton string when you can. Embroidery floss separated into 4 threads (they typically come as 6 threads) is strong enough. Use a single color of string or experiment by mixing colors. I like using a simple color to bind and a subtle colour that compliments the foliage to make the handle. Red is a common colour for ceremonial usage, which is why you will see many commercially sold bundles bound with it.

How to Bind a Homegrown Smudge Stick

The key to making a successful smudge stick is in binding tightly. I liken it to cigar making in that a tight bundle of leaves burns more slowly. I also find that the plant materials shrink as they dry and a loosely tied bundle is more likely to lose bits and pieces along the way or fall apart completely. With that in mind, grasp plants firmly and give the string a tight yank each time you turn or tie.

Step 1. Clip herbs into similarly sized lengths. Don’t skimp out — thick bundles smoulder slowly and are better looking. Pluck off any diseased or ugly leaves. Arrange the stems into a bundle and tie a tight knot around the stem end to secure. Wrap the string around the stems a few more times and then tie another knot to secure.
Step 2. Grasp the bundle with one hand and begin winding the string on an angle up to the tip of the bundle. Try to use as little string as possible and pull tightly as you go. I find that large-leaved herbs don’t need much binding, while very thin leaved herbs, especially conifers require more winding to prevent the leaves from falling out. You can leave the foliage loose at the end or fold under to keep everything tight.
Step 3. Turn the bundle around and begin winding down back to the start, creating a criss cross pattern overtop the first strings.

Step 4. You can choose now to either go back up and down again, retracing the path you took with another layer of string, or you can bind off and complete. I find that the pass tends to create a tighter bundle and is a good way to pull in and secure any pieces that got away the first time around. Wind plenty of string around the base of the bundle to create a handle. You can use as much string as you want here since this part will not burn. Tie off and clip any loose strings to create a neat and finished look.
Step 5. Set the bundles aside somewhere dry and dark where there is good air circulation. You can hang them using thin wires or Holiday tree ornament hooks wedged underneath the handles. You can also lay them out flat to dry, but here I suggest setting them on top of a screen or very loosely woven basket that is raised up off of any solid surfaces so that air can flow underneath and around the bundles.

Wait until your bundles are completely dry (this usually takes a few weeks at least) before burning them.

How to Use a Smudge Stick

Holding the “handle” of your homegrown smudge stick, light the end (a candle works best), being careful to avoid flyaway ends and falling embers or particularly combustable herbs. Hold the burning end over a clay bowl, ashtray, or other non-flammable container at all times. Allow the stick to burn for a few seconds and when it seems like it is going, carefully, gently blow or wave it to put out the flame. Allow the stick to smoulder for a few minutes; never leave its attendance. To extinguish, smother or crush the smouldering end until it goes out. Try to avoid using water as this can ruin the stick for further use. ~Eupterra Foundation


Essential Oils for Fall

To assist in staying healthy, there are a number of things you can do using essential oils on our body and in our environment.

Bergamot (Citrus bergamia) : is a powerful antiseptic and treats anxiety and psoriasis.

Cedarwood (Cedrus atlantica) : is used for the treatment of respiratory ailments.

Cinnamon (Cinnamoma Cassicia): is used to relieve rheumatism and digestive disorders.

Clove (Eugenia aromatica): is an exceptionally warming oil, antiseptic for pain.

Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin) : is antiseptic and anti-inflammatory used for skin care.

Vetiver (Vetiveria zizanoides): is relaxing on the nervous system, relieves tension and stress.

Lavender (Lavender officianalis): is essential for soothing stress, anxiety, peaceful sleep and treating burns.

Tea Tree (Melaleuca alternifolia): This is a year round germicide and antibacterial oil.


The Weight of Objects
By Madisyn Taylor

We hold onto material objects because we think they make us feel secure, when in reality they are cluttering our lives.

In life, we tend to have an easier time acquiring possessions than we do getting rid of them. Just as we harbor emotional baggage that is difficult to let go of, our lives can tend to be filled with material objects that we may feel compelled to hold on to. Most people are not conscious of how much they own and how many of their possessions are no longer adding value to their life. They fiercely hold on to material objects because this makes them feel secure or comfortable. While it’s true that the ownership of “stuff” can make you feel good for awhile, it seldom satisfies the deep inner longings that nearly everyone has for fulfillment and satisfaction. It is only when we are ready to let go of our baggage and be vulnerable that it becomes possible to recognize the emotional hold that our possessions can have on us.

It’s not uncommon to hold on to material objects because we are attached to them or fear the empty spaces that will remain if we get rid of them. Giving away the souvenirs from a beloved voyage may feel like we are erasing the memory of that time in our life. We may also worry that our loved ones will feel hurt if we don’t keep the gifts they’ve given us. It’s easy to convince ourselves that unused possessions might come in handy someday or that parting with them will cause you emotional pain. However, when your personal space is filled with objects, there is no room for anything new to enter and stay in your life. Your collection of belongings may “protect” you from the uncertainties of an unknown future while keeping you stuck in the past. Holding on to unnecessary possessions often goes hand in hand with holding on to pain, anger, and resentment, and letting go of your material possessions may help you release emotional baggage.

When you make a conscious decision to fill your personal space with only the objects that you need or bring you joy, your energy level will soar. Clearing your personal space can lead to mental clarity and an improved memory. As you learn to have a more practical and temporary relationship to objects, positive changes will happen, and you’ll have space to create the life that you desire.


Fall Herbal Medicine Chest

With the change of seasons from Summer to Fall we need to change our supplies in our medicine cabinet.

Arnica (Arnica montana): This year round herb helps stop pain, reduces swelling, bruising and inflammation.

Astragalus (Astragalus membranaceous): Take this antiviral herb twice a day to prevent or treat colds and flu.

Calendula (calendula officinalis): Use calendula to soothe chapped skin and lips.

Echinacea (Echinacea purpurea): Treat colds, flu, sore throat, and other common infections.

Ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba): for blood flow, mental fuzziness, memory loss, or vertigo.

Siberian ginseng (Eleutheroccocus senticosus): This treatment for lethargy and fatigue.

Triphala: a remedy for constipation and poor bowel tone.

Valerian (Valeriana officinalis): Soothes anxiety, used for sound sleep and treatment for insomnia.


An Excursion in Time, Part 4 by Stephen Halpert

Parson Jeremiah Willkie and the Widow Mercy Skeffington landed in an unceremonious heap on the floor in what appeared to be a church vestry.
“What on earth?” Mercy exclaimed. Nothing seemed to hurt. She looked curiously at Parson Willkie. “What’s happened to us? Where are we?” She shook her head and pointed to a refrigerator. “What on earth is that? It’s makes a strange humming noise.” She turned and pointed her finger at a computer. “And what’s that contraption over there on the table. It’s showing pictures.”
Parson Willkie sat up and shook his head. He felt dazed, unsure of his footing or whatever was left of it after his left leg was amputated in a makeshift battle field hospital at the Battle of Shiloh. Looking around he saw religious paintings on the walls. I seem to be in a church, he thought.
He peered at Mercy. He had seen this large comely woman several times at church but knew little about her and had no idea why they were together in these odd circumstances.
“We’re not where we were,” he said assuredly. Pulling himself up on his good leg, he staggered to a wooden bench. There he sat and rubbed his stump trying to sooth it.
Mercy Skeffington raised her hands. “Oh, you poor dear. You have suffered so during that war in the service of the Lord. I can only imagine how strenuous serving as an army chaplain must have been for you.”
She pulled up a stool and sat. “Please let me try to relieve some of your pain.” She began to stroke his amputated leg.
Parson Willkie fell into the deep blueness of her eyes tried to relax. Her hands felt so good. “You’ve the touch of an angel,” he said.
Several young ladies appeared in the doorway. A short stocky one in jeans and a colorful short sleeved shirt smiled in their direction. She had rainbow stripes painted in her hair.
“Well hello,” she smiled. “I’m Rosemary Stilton. You must be the Parson and his wife. We weren’t expecting you until Saturday. We’re all so looking forward to hearing you preach at our Sunday service. Fortunately, we have your room ready for you in the parsonage right next door.”
“Thank you,” Mercy smiled. “Yes, it was a rather hectic journey. And I would appreciate the opportunity to rest.”
“Whenever you’re ready,” one said, as they began tidying up the room.
Parson Willkie leaned close to Mercy. “None of this makes any sense,” he whispered.
“An epiphany,” she said softly.”
As the women worked, they snuck discrete looks at their visitors.
Rosemary spoke. “What made you decide to choose our church?” she said. “We hardly ever have visiting clergy.”
Mercy nodded. “My sense is we were sent here by God.”
“Oh yes,” Parson affirmed. He clutched Mercy’s hand and lost himself in her kindly gentle face, “After darkness there is Light. That is the Light of God’s grace that you all may be blessed.” He told them.”
Mercy felt sad for them. Their denim work pants were all torn with much need for mending. Their shirts were too tight and too small. She thought perhaps they were poor and this was all they had to wear. She smiled at them. “You really are blessed sisters of mercy.”
Hearing that they seemed momentarily taken aback, but nodded respectfully.
Then she focused on the Parson’s left leg, lifting her arms and sweeping her fingers over it. He squeezed her hand.
Though each member of the group silently questioned Mrs. Willke’s choice of fashion they were too polite to comment. Perhaps she was in a play, one thought. Those shoes, another raised her eyebrows, and the way she wears her hair, so absolutely old fashioned, she thought.
Mercy also wondered about the way these young women were dressed. Perhaps, she thought, none could afford appropriate church clothing.
Meanwhile that evening Adam and Ann, along with Minnie attended a hastily called emergency meeting at Parson Willkie’s church. News of Parson Willkie and the Widow Skeffington’s sudden disappearance had caught everyone by surprise and spread like wildfire. Conjecture ran high but no one dared presume that anything untoward had occurred.
“Maybe all this has something to do with the eclipse this Sunday noon,” one of the men said. Isn’t it said that during an eclipse odd events were known to happen?”
“Like a rainfall of cats or goldfish. I read about that in a Penny Dreadful,” a woman said.
“And frogs, a torrent of them flooding a community in France,” another said. “These certainly are strange times.”
Once they were alone in the guest room of the Parsonage. Mercy said, “I have nothing to wear aside from what I have on.”
“Neither do I,” the parson replied. “What shall we do about that?”
“Make the best of it,” she said. “And above of all else avoid temptation.” She peered at him and felt a newborn sense of warmth stirring throughout her body, feelings of intensity long dormant since she had received the dreadful news that her husband, a Union doctor, had been killed at the Battle of Gettysburg.
“Perhaps on the morrow we can purchase new clothes,” he said. “But I have no money. I’m not sure what to do.”
She smiled and looked at him, appreciating his strong manly features and dark piercing eyes. She so missed the companionship of someone like him. “I’m sure this is all just a test and the good Lord will provide. We are after all good people, and He wouldn’t leave us stranded or throw us to the wolves.
He nodded.
She half smiled and lowered her eyes. “I suppose we both must share this bed?”
He nodded appreciatively, and not knowing how to reply he chose to say nothing. She urged him to remove his wooden leg that he might rest more comfortably.
As he did so, he said, “Perhaps it is our destiny to assist here in some way.”
She nodded. “I suppose it would be best for us to get under these covers and go to sleep,” she said. “Tomorrow is another day.”
“You mean side by side?”
“I suppose,” she said. “I can’t think of any other way and it’s too cold for one of us to sleep on the floor.”
“Then,” he blurted, “I must marry you. Otherwise I couldn’t share a bed with you. It wouldn’t be right.”
Hearing that, she was flooded with feelings of joy. After all she might not have to spend the rest of her life alone.
Meanwhile, after the emergency church meeting Adam and Ann returned to their house and sat in their chilly, nearly empty parlor.
“No books, not even a newspaper to read.” Adam said. “Just that old Bible and several dogeared almanacs.” He frowned and peered at the large framed etchings depicting the great flood and the Children of Israel exiting from Egypt. “Good God, Ann. Whoever lives here must be catastrophically boring.”
“Best not to judge dear. After all, fortunately for us she has a sewing machine, and he seems to have a well-equipped carpentry shop. It could be a lot worse.”

To be continued.


Fun Samhain and Halloween Recipes!

Tips for Making Your Halloween Drinks Extra Eerie

1. Make a slime ring from green punch.

Freeze green punch in a gelatin mold along with plastic bugs, spiders, and eyeballs. And place a few small glow sticks underneath the punch bowl: when the lights are turned down, the brew will radiate in a mysterious and unearthly fashion.

2. Make life-size zombie hands made from ice.

Buy a couple of latex or rubber gloves. Wash them thoroughly with dish soap and turn them inside out. Carefully pour in water. Fasten tightly at the wrist with a rubber band. The shape will turn out best if you hang the gloves, fingers down, from your freezer shelf. Plan to freeze for at least one full day.When it’s party time, run warm water over the gloves very briefly – just long enough to loosen the gloves from the ice – and carefully peel them off the frozen hands. The ice fingers break off easily, but that’s okay – the disembodied digits just add to the “zombie” effect.

3. Turn your punchbowl into a smoky witch’s cauldron.

Mix up a punch of your favorite fruit juices in a large bowl and place it inside an even larger bowl, pot, or cauldron. Using tongs or extra-heavy-duty gloves add chunks of dry ice to the bigger container. This allows you to create that delightful creeping mist without putting dry ice directly into the punch, which can be dangerous. When you’re ready to create some magic, simply pour some hot water over the dry ice. Continue to add hot water and dry ice as needed. (Note: Never ingest dry ice! Be very careful when using dry ice. Always keep it out of reach of children and never touch it with bare skin; use tongs or extra-heavy-duty gloves.)

4. Make a batch of creepy gelatin shooters

Use red, green, and black cherry flavors. When they are set but not yet firm, place a gummy worm “crawling” out of each one.

5. Use plastic beakers from a party supply store or florist.

Pour shots of brightly colored punch into them, and invite your guests to take part in your “experiments.”

6. Float colored liqueurs and mixers in your punch bowl

Some will sink to the bottom, but that’s even creepier. Try grenadine syrup (to look like blood), crème de menthe or melon liqueur (to look like green slime!), or sour peach or orange schnapps (for pumpkin guts).

Witches’ Brew
Recipe by: MOMMYGABS

“A fun Halloween attention-getter. Great for parties. A fake hand is frozen in a disposable glove and then slipped into the punch bowl!”

1 (10-ounce) package frozen raspberries, thawed
2 1/2 cups cranberry juice
2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
2 litres ginger ale
2 litres sparkling apple cider (non-alcoholic)
6 gummi candy snakes

Yield: Servings: 16
To make the frozen hand: Wash and rinse the outside of a rubber glove. Turn glove inside out and set aside. In a 4 cup measuring cup, combine the thawed raspberries and cranberry juice.
Pour 2 cups of the raspberry mixture into a small saucepan. Sprinkle the gelatin over and let stand 2 minutes. Warm over low heat, stirring constantly, just until gelatin dissolves. Mix back into the reserved raspberry mixture in the measuring cup.

Pour raspberry mixture into the inverted glove. Gather up the top of the glove and tie securely with kitchen twine. Freeze until solid, or several days if possible.
To serve: Carefully cut glove away from frozen hand. Place frozen hand, palm side up, leaning against side of a large punch bowl. Pour in ginger ale and sparkling cider. Garnish with gummy snakes.

To avoid issues with people who may have allergies to latex, use a disposable glove that is latex-free. There is usually an alternative available in the cleaning department of your grocery store.


Halloween Candy Corn Jell-O® Shots
Recipe by: Leslie Kelly

“The seasonal treat that inspires strong feelings – love ’em or hate ’em – in a boozy shot form. This version goes for a triple shot, so shoot responsibly. Serve with candy corn on the side. Cheers!”
1 1/2 cups boiling water, divided
1 (3-ounce) package lemon-flavored gelatin mix (such as jell-o®)
2 cups vodka, divided
ice cubes
1 (3-ounce) package orange-flavored gelatin mix (such as jell-o®)
2 tablespoons warm water
1 (.25 ounce) envelope unflavored gelatin
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup light rum

Yield: Servings: 16
Pour 3/4 cup boiling water into a small bowl. Add lemon gelatin mix; stir until dissolved. Pour 1 cup vodka into a glass measuring cup; add enough ice to make 1 1/4 cup. Stir into lemon gelatin until slightly thickened; remove any unmelted ice. Fill tall shot glasses 1/3 of the way with lemon gelatin mixture.
Refrigerate until lemon gelatin layer is set, at least 90 minutes.
Pour remaining 3/4 cup boiling water into the small bowl. Add orange gelatin mix; stir until dissolved. Pour remaining 1 cup vodka into a glass measuring cup; add enough ice to make 1 1/4 cup. Stir into orange gelatin until slightly thickened; remove any unmelted ice. Pour over lemon gelatin layer.
Refrigerate until orange gelatin layer is set, at least 90 minutes.
Pour 2 tablespoons warm water into a bowl. Add unflavored gelatin; stir until dissolved. Stir in condensed milk and rum. Pour over orange gelatin layer.
Refrigerate until top layer is set, at least 30 minutes.
Tall shot glasses are available at specialty stores or online.



Weekly Horoscopes Beginning Sunday, 27 October 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.

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

Your horoscope for this week:

Ordinarily, when confronted with unwelcome changes, you`ll assess the situation then either ignore them and do as intended or, alternatively, fight back with conviction. Now, however, the problem could be as much your own existing plans or intentions as it is actual events. Tedious as in-depth analysis may be, it`s the only way to assess what you`re facing. Once that`s clear, you can act with both conviction and wisdom.

You feel obliged to help a friend to reach a goal that`s important to them. You can understand their need to fulfil this aim which is why you are prepared to go out of your way to support them. They may not show it at the moment but they are grateful. Conditions at work are a lot more settled than they`ve been of late and this will give you the chance to catch up on an accumulated backlog of tasks.

This could prove one of the most dramatic weeks of your year; and yes, there may be times you are on the edge. This though is exactly the moment when those of your sign show the courage and bravery to which you aspire; but yes, to some, your actions will seem foolhardy. True, you will need support. That though maybe something you gather with relative ease. In fact, it`s entirely possible that in the first few days of November others will be looking at you with renewed respect – aware that you`ve given all you can to ensure success. It could be argued that you`ve been battling cosmic headwinds for more than a decade. You have experience now and by the end of this week that should show.

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

Your horoscope for this week:

It may seem you`re being forced to make arrangements or possibly commit to plans you simply aren`t interested in. While, obviously, you`re annoyed, its actually destiny pushing you to overcome habits as familiar as they are restrictive. Once you recognise these changes as breakthroughs that will, in turn, lead to more, you`ll realise these are the opportunities you`ve been seeking, if in an unanticipated form.

At last you have access to a service which should really be available to everyone who needs it, it if it wasn`t for a lack of funding. This will help you and your family feel as if you can move forward with the professional support you feel you need. A senior colleague will take you under their wing and you can learn a great deal from them. They will introduce you to an area they feel you will excel in.

Though you may feel that you begin the week having hit a brick wall, it should be obvious to others you`re going to crash through it – or true, adopting your famous `bull in a china shop` approach. It should be obvious to all that you have no intention of being deflected in your aims. It will take someone of considerable courage to either stop you in your tracks or to join forces with you. The latter is more likely. The alignment of Mercury and Venus in your opposite sign before the end of October suggest you will forge a strong alliance. Yes, it could take several weeks before others then accept your instructions; and yes, this could be a key financial turning point. Yet it may be that opportunities arising will allow you to show just how creative and decisive you can be..

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

Your horoscope for this week:

The trick to dealing with this unpredictable period is to make firm decisions, yet ensure they`re flexible. True, that may demand a few compromises, and in a lot of ways. However, with your ruler Mercury retrograde from Thursday 31 October, unexpected events will require a serious rethink anyway. That being the case, experiment. Take chances, knowing what you learn will shape what, finally, you do.

You`re looking ahead and making travel arrangements to make a special holiday dream come true. Check online for discount packages on airfares and accommodation. You will enjoy visiting places of historic interest that make you feel connected with the past. Self-care needs to be made a top priority. Make some time for relaxation or prolonged exposure to stress will take a toll on your health. Aromatherapy, acupuncture and practising relaxation techniques can help.

It could easily feel as though you`re risking all to get your way; and true, you may be doing precisely that. Take care that you don`t sabotage your long-term future by taking a stance which even you must know will have to be altered before long. The fact is that the cosmic weather could be described as hurricane force or at least turbulent. That though will change. The eye of this particular storm comes before the end of October; but then, once your ruling planet, Mercury, turns retrograde on the very last day of October, the opportunity to reflect over recent decisions and yes, perhaps transfer energy into different directions should appear. It`s likely too that someone (quite probably born either Scorpio or Capricorn), will be willing to ease you into a new career path.

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

Your horoscope for this week:

If you`ve been avoiding discussions and, equally, putting off decisions about a range of matters, mostly because you`re unclear in your own mind what`s best, it`s no surprise. However, with things moving swiftly, you`re urged to plunge in. The trick is to inform others any arrangements are tentative and, equally, to rely more on your intuition than facts. You`ll be amazed how well this approach works.

The modern world can be so hectic. In this busy week, the main target you are aiming for is to remain practical even if this won`t be particularly pleasurable. Your hard work is impressing both your peers and senior colleagues and you will get a lot of satisfaction from your efforts. New commercial outlets will be found for your creative talents and if you`re self-employed, profits will be greater than you imagined they would be.

This week is unlikely to run smoothly. By the first day of November, Mercury will be retrograde. That is not bad news however. Its retrograde period this time takes it back through the research and development area of your solar chart. This should give three weeks of opportunity to develop a creative interest and be a fabulous time for researching and archiving. Before then anticipate fireworks at work and at home. It`s unlikely that things will run smoothly. This though should find you at your best. Those of your sign have clear leadership skills. These rise to the surface in times of crisis. Yes, the intransigence of some people will be difficult to deal with. Yet if anyone can charm, you can. Don`t underrate your abilities. Note too, that your memory should result in a forgotten decision, making all the difference to determining steps to be taken in early November.

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

Your horoscope for this week:

Earlier this month you were forced by events or longstanding but inconvenient commitments to go along with changes you regarded as unwise, if not seriously risky. Since then, however, you`ve realised these events are a seriously good idea. Enough you`re wondering what else you`ve bypassed. It`s worth reviewing recent decisions, especially ideas or offers you rejected. There may still be time to say yes.

You could get drawn into some heated conversations but you won`t regret saying more than you intended about a past event, relationship or problem. It will feel good to have taken this opportunity to get it all off your chest. If you`re having to work on something complicated that you`ve never done this before, a good “How To” book will come in useful. Better still, team up with a talented friend. Two heads are better than one.

There are two kinds of lions: those and those who follow. Perhaps it`s time to decide which one you are? It`s entirely possible that you`ll feel that someone is moving in completely the wrong direction. Property issues could again be involved. There is also the high probability career wise, of being involved with someone who works in an area about which you look know little but where you are certain that your expertise would make a difference. Take note that Mercury turns retrograde on the last day of October. Yes, you have much to learn about their business before you can really move forward with an alliance, but yes, you`re probably right in identifying unexplored avenues. This potential partnership could be super powerful in 2020.

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

Your horoscope for this week:

As a Virgo, you`re always happier when plans, for now and the future, are in place. However, recent unruly events have alerted you to the likelihood of sudden changes. Actually, with your ruler Mercury retrograde from this Thursday, surprises are inevitable. The more flexible your thinking and, equally, the arrangements you make are, the easier it will be to ride out these twists and turns.

Joint ventures are worth pursuing. A fund-raising exercise will be more successful than anyone anticipated and will raise a lot of money for a good cause. This could inspire you to launch a charity-based concern. You might be surprised by how comfortable you feel working with a large group of people. There`s an intriguing atmosphere in your workplace and you could be offered an impressive promotion. It`s a good time to mix business with pleasure..

As you may know, your ruling planet Mercury is retrograde three times in every year – but in different areas of the zodiac. These retrogrades form a pattern over decades. The retro period that begins on the last day of October is in the sign of Scorpio. For you, this should prove an excellent time for research, making notes and yes, studying generally. Whatever work you do; detailed analysis will surely get you to where you want to be. It should also put you in a position of considerable power by the time that Jupiter arrives in another of the Earth signs in early December. Hold these thoughts when it seems that others are half crazed with ideas. They may be having a moment of genius. Before their plans are implemented however, considerable work needs to be done; and yes, they probably will look to you to do that.

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

Your horoscope for this week:

The current unsettling planetary activity has everybody on edge, so much that no matter what you say, somebody will object, if not argue. Understand this, and instead of struggling to create an accord, you`ll shrug your shoulders, leave others to their battles and busy yourself elsewhere. That allows you to deal with other, less contentious matters and, equally, means you`ll return to a more harmonious mood.

You wonder whether you can trust some of the information that`s being given to you early in the week. You aren`t sure how reliable a colleague or neighbour might be. If someone`s words or behaviour makes you suspicious, trust your instincts. Close relationships are and will always be important to you. Let a loved one take the lead. It will make them happy to manage joint affairs and because you`ve got other things to do, you can leave all the decision making to them.

Mars continues its journey through your sign and your energy levels will no doubt be high (a dormant competitive spirit could emerge too). It is necessary to grapple with unfamiliar issues and situations. Yours, as you know is one of the Air signs and perhaps you really do enjoy solving puzzles. It`s probable however that you neglect the emotional impact. You may be so quick to smooth things over and maintain balance that you overlook the need to rest and recuperate. It`s perhaps fortunate that Mercury turns retrograde on the last day of October and in one of the key researches and finance areas of your solar chart. Through this first three weeks of November you could overhaul much of your thinking yes, give vent to deeply held emotions. Note that the cosmic weather will change in December when your profile will surely be much enhanced as a direct result of how you deal with present challenges.

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

Your horoscope for this week:

While Monday`s Scorpio New Moon ushers in breakthroughs in existing circumstances and promising ideas or offers, you won`t recognise that potential, at least initially. Instead of waiting and watching, do something out of character and say yes to everything. Of course, you`ll regard this as tentative and tell others the same. Still, you`ll soon be embracing what, only days before, seemed unappealing if not unrealistic.

People who are ignoring rules and procedures are causing problems for you. You`re growing tired of having to sort out the mess they are creating. It is time to be specific about how other people`s actions are creating havoc in your life. Accept invitations that are likely to put you in touch with a new social circle and if the chance to travel comes your way, seize it with both hands. A change of scene and activity will be refreshing.

Is it possible that you are watching and waiting for the perfect moment to declare an interest? This week you could turn other people`s worlds upside down. You`re right, they may well have underestimated your determination. Yes, it`s also true that you could be knocked for six by an announcement. Whatever; the world could look very different by the beginning of November. Others though may well turn to you for your insights. Don`t underestimate your very considerable charm and ability to recall exactly what was said – by who, to whom and how. Others might focus on the words; you focus on the sounds and indeed the spaces between the words. Your input at meetings will surely be vital. Commercially you could be at your most astute. Yes, Mercury turns retrograde in your sign on the last day of October, but this is perhaps no bad thing. It may be that this will bring time to go back over thoughts and notes so that you are well-placed for further meetings to take place after the Sun leaves your sign.

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

Your horoscope for this week:

Mostly, you`re easy-going about the unexpected. While many battle unwelcome changes, you`ll find ways to work around them; but now plans that are both longstanding and those you care about passionately are under threat. Bizarrely, your instincts say to back off and see what happens. Trust these feelings. Within weeks something better, if completely unexpected, will appear. When it does, everything else will make sense.

You`re working on something that requires attention to detail and mistakes will be made if you allow yourself to be distracted. It will be important to you to carry out this job to the best of your ability so don`t give it anything other than one hundred per cent of your attention. Although you will encounter a few bumpy patches in a close relationship on the whole this should be a progressive week when a career ambition will come measurably closer to realisation.

This is unlikely to be an easy week for any sign. The good news however, is that by Friday, you will likely change direction. Yes, this could prove costly; yet it should be that unless you go back and tidy something up, you won`t be able to move forward. Difficulties could surface as of Monday and if not directly health-related then may be to do with computer breakdown. One way or another crisis management will likely be required and yes, this could be exhausting. Yet it appears that there is a team behind you and that they are persistent. Their determination to realise success – however long that takes – and your sense of optimism that all can be overcome with effort should work. Priority might need to be given either to research or to fitness.

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

Your horoscope for this week:

Some obstacles are best dealt with after careful thought. However, with things moving so swiftly, you`re better off plunging in, and dealing with each of the numerous twists and turns you`ll be facing as they arise. Even if you had planned ahead, with powerful planetary activity indicating ongoing changes, in circumstance and your actual plans, you`re better off exploring, and dealing with, surprises as they arise.

A new business or romantic partnership is causing you some confusion. Before saying anything, you need to get to grips with your feelings. Be patient with people who annoy you. The less anger you show, the faster you will see an end to the problems they are causing. Talk to a senior colleague if there`s something bothering you that you can`t discuss with others. Resist the temptation to discuss work issues on a public forum. Keep your personal and public lives separate.

Your expertise could be tested and this would not be the time to doubt yourself. It`s likely the case that work you put in over the last 18 months has value. True, you may be acutely aware of how much more there is to do. Even so, it should appear that you have the best grasp on how things could be. You will recall that Pluto is presently passing through your sign: aspects involving Mercury (the planet associated with brainpower), indicates desire to dig deep and retrieve information as necessary. It`s probable that your network is not only secure, but is of the highest quality. Teambuilding looks to be a big theme before the end of October. Yes, this could be driven by crisis. It`s probable though, that by Friday your place within a group will be secured and that though uncomfortable with the idea that others are seeing you as some kind of `angel`, that you`ll agree you really are best placed to lead or `direct traffic`.

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

Your horoscope for this week:

Although your inquisitive nature embraces all sorts of sudden changes and new ideas, altering elements of your own life is another matter. Yet, recently, you`ve already done it and, to your surprise are considering other changes. This restlessness is about exploring new, and intriguing, options. At least explore these. Once you do, you`ll realise how much remains to be discovered and discussed before plans can be finalised.

A partner will ask for more time to make an important decision. You wonder why they are reluctant to commit to new plans but the more you try to push them, the more defensive they will get. Some people find it hard to adapt that change is on the cards. Pay heed to a warning from a colleague who has been talking to the boss. They have your best interests at heart. Get on with jobs you`ve been putting off lately as they won`t take care of themselves.

Those of your sign have a justified reputation for going off at tangents.. You may not think you are doing that. Indeed, you may be convinced that others should know exactly what`s propelling you forward and your general objective. Even so, it`s probable that as of Monday you will shock others by taking a route they would never have imagined. Fact is that on the last day of October, Mercury stations at the apex of your solar chart and then turns retrograde. Though you may be aware that there is still research or training to be done, you might also be absolutely set on an objective and know what you want to achieve before early December. It`s unlikely that anyone could deflect you. Rather more importantly you could secure support from those born under the Water signs of Cancer, Scorpio or Pisces. This group might really appreciate the fact that you have this single-mindedness.

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

Your horoscope for this week:

Usually you`re philosophical about disappointments. However, you invested a lot of time, thought and, in some cases, heart in recent plans so had reason to assume they`d go as intended; but they haven`t. The problem isn`t you. The foundation on which these are based has shifted. The solution? For now, link up with somebody less idealistic, and more practical. It will make life a lot easier.

You may not relish the thought of some of the jobs you have to do but if a senior colleague senses your indifference they will not be as cooperative as they might be if you act as if you`re enjoying the work. Discussions revolve around new possibilities and planning for the future. There`s some uncertainty in the air when it becomes apparent that reaching an agreement is going to take a lot of time, effort and compromise.

You probably know that there are three periods in every year when Mercury appears to turn retrograde. These follow a pattern and in 2019, the focus is on the Water signs. When Mercury is retrograde in Scorpio on the last day of October you may feel that the plug has been pulled and that you have no alternative other than to follow others – even though it`s clear that they`re not entirely sure where they`re going. All will yet be revealed. The fact that they want you to follow them most likely comes from the fact that they understand that you could oil their wheels. In fact, they might make very little progress without your input. Even if you don`t yet understand the grand picture, what you can do is facilitate matters and allow others to make best use of resources. Your design skills should surface too. Indeed, it`s likely that by Friday, this ability to make things look good will be acknowledged – and perhaps even lead to a curious offer being made next month.

Posted by: arif uk <>


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