sing to Us your ancient song
low and long in Our souls
of peace and love,
of potential and possibilities
We are the sentinels
of your beauty and
Stewards of the future;
Our time has come
~excerpt Patricia Telesco 2019~
~from We’Moon 2021, page 5~
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
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.
Herb of the Year for 2021: Parsley (Petroselinum crispum, named by the International Herb Association.
Flower of the Month for March: Daffodil
March is National Women’s History Month
March Feature: The Notorious Potato
The Celtic Tree Calendar
Fearn (Alder) March 18 to April 14
The Goddess Calendar ~ The Goddess Month of:
Columbina – March 20- April 17
29-Feast of Rhiannon
31-Festival of Luna
29-Parade of Unicorns
GrannyMoon’s Sunday Classes at Sticks and Stones, Fairfax, VA
04: Face to Face Class: 1–3:00 ~ WitchCrafting
11: Face to Face Class: 1–3:00 ~ The Herbal Cauldron
18: Face to Face Class: Noon–2:00 ~ The Magick of Crystals
Current Moon Phase: Full Moon
Goddess Aspect: Mother
Associated Goddesses: Aphrodite, Arianrhod, Asherah, Danu, Cerridwen, Gaia, Isis,, Selene, Sisters of the Wyrrd, and the Norns
Magickal Attributes: Fruition – Manifesting goals, Nurturing, Passion, Healing, Strength, Power.
From fourteen to seventeen-and-a-half days after the new moon. Prime time for rituals for prophecy. From seven to fourteen days after the New Moon.
Full Moon: Symbolic of the height of power, the peak of clarity, fullness and obtainment of desire.
Full Moon energy is used for banishing unwanted influences in your life, protection magick, and divination.
The Moon travels 1/2 way around to the 6oclock position, and the face of the Moon is fully illuminated. We love Full Moon magic, an apt time for fruition, completion and wholeness. Some say the magic can be done the day of the Moon as well as three days on either side of it.
It is a good time for all Positive Magic, protection, scrying, love, healing and prosperity. Also a good time to grow closer to the Goddess by Drawing Down the Moon
High Priestess Training with GrannyMoon
The entire course takes 15 months to complete (four levels). Tuition covers lessons, assignments and instructor feedback. In addition, students may download guided meditation exercises and be eligible for Sabbats, Esbats and retreats with the Sisterhood. The entire fee for each level is $120 (payment plan available), sixteen lessons in each level, except the last.
Ceremonial Cords and frame-able Completion Certificates are awarded as membersvcomplete each level.
Level I – Initiate of the Sisters of the Burning Branch – White cord
Level II – Adept of the the Sisters of the Burning Branch- Red cord
Level III – Priestess of the Sisters of the Burning Branch- Black cord
Level IV – High Priestess of the Sisters of the Burning Branch – Green cord
Learn About Herbs with GrannyMoon!
Treat headaches with herbs. You’re reading, driving, working, cooking—and whoomf! a headache happens. For ordinary headaches caused by the stresses and strains of daily life, a calming cup of herbal tea may be all you need to restore your equilibrium. Use these dried headache herbs, brewed with 1 cup boiling water and sweetened with honey:
Lavender, lemon balm, meadowsweet, ½ teaspoon each
Sage, rosemary, mint, ½ teaspoon each
Rosemary, marjoram, peppermint, ½ teaspoon each
A cool lavender compress for the temples and a quiet rest in a dark room may also give you the relief you need.
There is so much to learn about herbs! In Herbalism 101, we cover 21 herbs, and you will start your own personal Materia Medica, that we will build throughout the next levels. We will cover the basic aspects of herbs. From culinary to magickal, medicinal to ornamental. As well as the many modalities of herbs!
During this course, in addition to the on-line lessons and hands-on projects that you do at home, I will be sending you articles, and information, as well as questions about your own personal use and research.
I look forward to walking this green journey with you! I love herbs and I hope that you do to or will learn to!
There are 10 lessons in each level and there is no time limit for completion. You may study at your own pace! There are no texts to purchase.
For more info or to join my class, click here!
The cost for Level 1 is $50.00 or the entire Healing Arts Course (1-3) for $150.00, which includes a free Reiki certification course when all three are ordered!
The Goddess School Grimoire
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 (www.Goddessschool.com) has grown into a large and beautiful global community of women.
March 29, 2021 – April 4, 2021
The beginning of the week starts off with confusing but creative energy. Your imagination will be active so make sure that you check and verify information while being clear and concise. Tuesday is beneficial for business and relationships.
Midweek is great for self-discipline and to put yourself in a positive light on the job or in your career. If you are looking to get a raise or increase your fees, now would be the time to do it.
The weekend is good for problem-solving and getting to the roots of long-standing problems. This could help you resolve them once and for all. You will be filled with pioneering thoughts and focus on potentials and possibilities. You will find yourself more enthusiastic than normal.
Recommended candles and oils: Blessed Herbal Truth & Justice / Blessed Herbal Stability and Self-Esteem / Motor City Hoo Doo Road Opener / Wicked Witch Mojo Everything and then Some
Here’s what you missed on CoventryCreations.com this week…
Full Moon in Libra on March 28, 2021
It’s a rare person who gets through life without a broken or bruised heart. Thankfully we have a Full Moon in Libra, the sign of relationships, here and armed with ice cream and a box of tissues. Why is this so important right now? It’s because this Full Moon opposes Venus and Chiron and our need to release the effects of painful and destructive relationships is top of mind and heart.
Card of the Week: Five of Cups
Did things not go as expected?
The Five of Cups often appears when a situation hasn’t turned out the way you expected, and you are sad, regretful, and disappointed.
Instead of moving on, you are choosing to wallow in your self-pity. All you can focus on right now is what went wrong and how you failed.
This is a gentle nudge that it’s time to get over it! Allow yourself to feel the feels, but set a time limit for your self-pity and then pull yourself together and move on.
The negative emotions you feel are holding you back from your fullest potential. Release them so you can move on and create positive change.
Forgiveness is vital now for yourself and others. If someone has disappointed you, find it within your heart to forgive that person, releasing yourself from the disappointment.
Shift your mindset and focus on what can go right from this point onwards.
Ask the Tarot: What can I learn from my mistakes?
The Full Libra Moon
From Rivers in the Ocean
The Full Libra Moon is associated with balance, harmony, justice and right relationships with all things. Will it help us to bring the balance and equilibrium in this world that is so out of order now? Libra is ruled by Venus, the planet of Love, so with its power we should be able to find the balanced way to harmonize relationships with ourselves, others and world around us.
We need to be mindful and aware of the balance needed in different aspects of our lives, learn to understand contrasting positions and be truthful to our authentic self. Full Moon brings energetic surges that can push us from our comfort zones to embrace the changes and encourage the new growth. Let’s be free to express yourself with careful consideration of ripple effects and impact of our actions on others.
The name for this Full Crow Moon came from the northern native tribes who observed that the crow cawing heralds the end of winter. Sometimes it was also referred to as the Full Crust Moon because the snow cover becomes crusted from thawing by day and freezing at night, or the Full Worm Moon since the earthworms appear from the thawed soil and attract the birds.
MARCH 28, 2021 BY ELIZABETH BARRETTE
This is a favorable time to cast spells of protection. Here is one that uses the four magical elements: air, fire, water, and earth. You will need a stick of incense, a burner, a lighter, sea salt, water, a bowl, and a fan. It is easier to do this spell with two people, but it can be done alone.
First put the incense in the burner and safely light it. This represents air and fire. Next put the water in the bowl and add a pinch of sea salt. This represents water and earth. If you have two people, you can bless the rooms one at a time, first with incense and then with salt water. By yourself, it may be easier to do the whole home with incense and then with salt water. Fan the smoke so it touches all parts of your home. Sprinkle salt water on the walls, floors, and ceilings. Draw a pentacle in salt water over every door, window, and other opening such as vents or electrical outlets. When finished, be sure to extinguish the incense.
Seed Catalog Spell
MARCH 27, 2021 BY DALLAS JENNIFER COBB
It’s time to dream of summer and plan a magical garden. The soil is still cold, but the latest seed catalogs are out and you can always dream.
Cast a circle, calling in the Goddess:
By the earth that is her body, the
air that is her breath, the fire of her
strong spirit, and the waters of her
living womb, I cast this circle.
I call what is above and what is below,
and ask them to unite—earth and
sunlight—to grow my magical garden.
In sacred space, contemplate your own garden and which herbs and flowers you could seed and grow to use in your magical practice. Focused on love spells? Grow roses and basil. Interested in joy and happiness? Plant calendula and sunflowers. Practicing protection? Plant garlic and rosemary.
Once you have envisioned your magical garden, thank the directions and open the circle, ready now to order from those seed catalogs.
Remembering the Ancestors of the Land
MARCH 26, 2021 BY BLAKE OCTAVIAN BLAIR
Today is Prince Kuhio Day. Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole was a Hawaiian monarch who helped pass the Hawaiian Homes Act, which set aside 200,000 acres of land to be homesteaded by native Hawaiians. We often do not think about the people who were native to the lands that we now live upon. Sometimes the land was less than honorably, if not forcibly, taken from them. Those who lived on the land where we now reside are connected to us as ancestors of place.
Today, research the identity of the native peoples of the land where you currently live. Take a few moments in meditation, sitting outside directly upon the land if possible, to consider the chain of events that possibly took place to result in your home being upon that land today. How can you honor those who came before you and were native to the land?
MARCH 25, 2021 BY NAJAH LIGHTFOOT
Today we are going to practice divination by using our intuition. If you always go up the stairs, go down the stairs. If you always sit in a certain chair, sit in a different one. If you always go home by the same route, take a different one today.
What you are doing is waking up your intuition and encouraging spirit to speak to you through the simple act of changing up your routine. We all get into ruts. It may be quicker, faster, or easier to always do things the same way, but what if something magickal and spectacular is waiting for you around the corner or comes your way because you took a different route?
Pay attention to any signs, feelings, nudges, or small miracles that come your way. At the end of the day, notice how changing your routine for just one day brought blessings into your life.
Obtain the Blessing of a Sylph
MARCH 24, 2021 BY STORM FAERYWOLF
Sylphs are elemental points of consciousness that exist within what we experience as the air. When we tune into them, they can help us become cleansed, alert, and revitalized.
For this spell you will need some light-smelling incense and some small wind chimes (or small bells).
Sometime in the morning, face east and light the incense. Ground and center. Imagine the light of the morning sun shining into your heart center. Imagine that the breeze, wind, and clouds are flowing through you. Say:
Morning sun and breath of life,
Vital essence, sing thy song.
Now blow upon the wind chimes (or strike the bells) and imagine that the sound is ringing inside your body as you breathe. Be aware of how the air around you is filled with tiny points of consciousness. You might imagine them as little silver spirals, but just notice however they manifest for you. Imagine breathing them in and out again, leaving you feeling refreshed and cleansed. When finished, be sure to extinguish the incense.
Near Miss Day
MARCH 23, 2021 BY EMYME
On this date in 1989, an asteroid came very close to hitting the earth. Since then, people have celebrated March 23 as Near Miss Day.
What other near misses have you or your loved ones experienced? Tainted food? Car accident? Kitchen mishap? Those experiences stay with us long after the actual event. Take some time today to ponder those events and your good fortune, and perhaps write about them.
Soteria is the Greek goddess of safety, deliverance, and protection from hurt, and Soter is her male counterpart. Express gratitude for your near misses and call upon Soteria and Soter and/or the Lady and Lord to continue to offer their protection:
In great thanks for the protection
from any “almost” injurious
occasion, we ask to be kept well
and whole going forward.
The Remember Yourself Spell
MARCH 22, 2021 BY MICHAEL FURIE
A concept that I usually choose to follow in my practice is the idea that spells should be cast “for the good of all.” That way, money magic and even binding or banishing (for example) are given the built-in condition that the goal will be achieved without harmful side effects. That being said, it’s important to avoid becoming so focused on everyone else’s good that you overlook yourself; “all” includes you. This spell serves to ensure that you remain looped in to your own work while simultaneously programming your future magic to be infused with the proper level of care.
Anoint a white candle with a bit of your saliva and place it in a holder. You can burn rosemary incense if you wish. As you light the candle, say:
Achieving goals with grace and
charm, commanding, strong, and
without harm; for good of all,
including me, as I will, so mote it be.
Extinguish with a candle snuffer.
Spring Cleaning for the Soul and the Home
It’s time to think about spring cleaning. Think of it as a meditative exercise to sweep out the old energies of winter and make way for spring abundance. Do it with the conscious intent of clearing out old energies to set the stage for new good fortune.
In spring cleaning the first thing to clean is your spirit/soul. Let me assist you in cleansing your spirit and house! You’ll be surprised what I find spiritually that you need to remove.
Smudging is another way to clean your spirit, body, house, and even your work place. Click here for details on how to do Smudging.
Next is cleaning out your house. Start with your closets. Most of us have closets that are bursting with stuff we have not used for a long time. Donate items that you no longer can use. Old clothes can be recycled and used for cleaning rags. Nothing feels better than having a clean organized closet.
From there you can start cleaning one room at a time. After you finished your home you can also clean out your office. From there you can start cleaning out your flower beds or flower pots. Nothing feels better than putting your fingers into Mother Earth.
Once finished, treat yourself to a cleansing and relaxing bath. Light some candles and add some of your favorite bath oil for a cleansing and rejuvenating bath. Get rid of that winter skin by using a natural scrub! And finish with a good natural moisturizing lotion.
When you have finished cleaning your house and soul you are going to feel refreshed. Your mind will be clearer and Your spirit will sing!
Happy Spring Time!
Heartwings Love Notes 976 Festival of Rebirth
Heartwings says: “Spring brings festivals of rebirth.”
As I look around my home, I see the dust and disarray that has gathered during the low light of the winter months. After all, if you can’t see it you can’t very well clean it. And to be sure, during the cold weather, I move more slowly and sleep later, which means there are less daylight hours to get things like cleaning done. This is the downside to the longer light hours of spring: the revelation of my tasks that lie ahead. However, I am much better off than the homemakers of previous centuries.
Spring house cleaning in years gone by was quite a chore. Homes were lit by fires, and later by coal furnaces. The smoke from the heat source would permeate the home, adhering to everything from floors to walls to curtains and more. I feel fortunate that I don’t need to beat my rugs as they hang on the clothesline, wash the walls and floors with harsh soap and water carried in buckets from the pump, take down the drapes and curtains and shake them, and more.
As it does for our homes, spring cleaning for the planet comes once a year. The earth too needs to do a rebirth and refresh. In addition to the spring winds and rains that arrive to do visible and actual cleanup, there are festivals in many cultures that have arisen to symbolize the renewal that comes at this time. The Internet is a great source for these celebrations. They include Holi in India, Cherry blossom festivals in Japan, Tulip festivals in Holland and many more.
There are also many familiar rituals associated with spring celebrations: the wearing of new clothes, attendance at sacred and/or religious services and ceremonies, gifts that are said to be brought by the Easter Bunny, the hunt for Easter eggs, and traditional family gatherings where certain foods are served. Easter is the name many in the USA associate with our spring festival. It is a joyous opportunity to honor the beauty together with the new life that emerges as we celebrate the festival of rebirth embodied in spring.
May your Spring celebrations be filled with joy and happy occasions.
Blessings and best regards, Tasha Halpert
PS How do you celebrate the season? For some it is a religious holiday, others celebrate in secular ways. Most do celebrate spring one way or another. I am so happy when readers share their thoughts and experiences, thanks for doing so to firstname.lastname@example.org. For more Love Notes please visit my web pages at http://www.heartwingsandfriends.com.
March Full Worm Moon
March’s Full Moon is commonly called the Full Worm Moon. This is because of the earthworms that wriggle out of the ground as the earth begins to thaw in March. Here’s a little known fact about March’s Full Moon: it was called the Worm Moon only by Southern Native American tribes. In fact, there’s no way the Northern tribes would have ever called it the Worm Moon – and the reason why is fascinating.
Essentially, earthworms did not exist in Northern America. It would be literally impossible for Northern tribes to see worms popping up in March. All the earthworms you see in Northern America today are invasive species brought in by colonists. These earthworms were brought over either out of a misguided intent to help fertilize the soil, or as an accident along with transported plants or the soil used for ballast in ships. Little did the colonists know that during the last ice age, glaciers had spread so far across Canada and the northern parts of the United States that all earthworms had been completely wiped out.
When the deep ice melted 12,000 years ago, the native forests in those areas grew back and adapted to the loss of earthworms. The growth of these forests became dependent on a layer of duff, which is a compost layer comprised of decomposing leaves and other rotting organic matter. If you ever visit one of these native forests, you will be asked to clean your shoes and make sure it’s free of earthworm eggs. That’s because while it’s normally harmless everywhere else, earthworms will aggressively destroy the native forest’s duff layer by eating right through it.
This is why in Northern American tribes such as the Shawnee tribe, the Worm Moon is called the Sap Moon instead, as a reminder for the tribes that they can begin tapping maple syrup. In general, March’s Full Moon is known as a herald for the beginning of spring and new agricultural cycles. The Anglo-Saxons even used the Worm Moon as a way to predict the state of their crops. They called it the Storm Moon if it was stormy, which was a sign that their crops would fail. But if it was dry, they called it the Rugged Moon, an indication of a bounteous harvest.
One of its other names is the Chaste Moon, symbolizing the purity of early spring. The Pueblo tribe named it the Moon When the Leaves Break Forth, while in Shoshone culture it was known as the Warming Moon. Sometimes it is called the Crow Moon, after the crows and other birds that appear as winter draws to a close. Other times, it’s called the Crust Moon, because of the snow that becomes crusty when it thaws in the sun and freezes in the moonlight.
In India, March’s Full Moon is also seen as a symbol of the arrival of spring, and coincides with the festival of Holi. This is a riotous party where Indian communities all around the world engage in a huge water fight. Everyone goes out into the streets and sprays each other with colored water and powders, singing and dancing with strangers and loved ones alike. Playing and feasting together is a chance for you to repair relationships that have gone bad, reaffirming your existing social bonds as you move forward together into the new year.
Taking Responsibility for Your Destiny
Your destiny may be waiting for you, but whether or not you meet your destiny is up to you.
There are those of us who believe that our lives are predestined and that we should resign ourselves to our lots in life. Yet the truth is that it is up to each one of us to decide what that destiny will be. While each of us is born with a life purpose, it is up to us whether or not we will say yes to fulfilling it. And just like when we choose what to eat, who to keep company with, and whether to turn right or left when we leave our home everyday, choosing to say yes to your destiny is a decision that can only be realized when you take action to make that choice a reality.
Whether you believe it is your destiny to be a parent, an adventurer, an artist, a pioneer, or a spiritual guru, saying yes to your destiny is only the first step. While manifesting your destiny starts with knowing what you want and believing you can attain your goals, there are then the actions that must be taken and the decisions to be made before your destiny can truly happen. When you take responsibility for fulfilling your destiny and begin acting with the intention of doing so, you not only take fate into your own hands, but also you become the hands of your own fate. Doorways inevitably open for you to step through, and every choice you make can be a creative act toward realizing your goals and dreams. You begin to follow your instincts and intuition, recognize opportunities when they are presented to you, and seize those golden moments. You also begin to recognize the decisions that may not serve this greater picture and can more easily push them aside.
Remembering that the decision to fulfill your destiny is always a choice can be empowering. Knowing you are fulfilling your destiny because you want to, rather than because you have to, can make a huge difference. When you are freed from obligation, obstacles in your way become challenges to be overcome, and the journey becomes an adventure rather than the obligatory steps you are being forced to take. Your destiny may be waiting for you, but whether or not you meet your destiny is up to you. Your fate is in your hands.
The Magical Spice Rack: How To Work With The Correspondences In Your Cupboards
APRIL 21, 2019 BY ASTREA TAYLOR
I plunder my cupboards for my magical works so much that my “magical spice rack” has become a cliche. It’s a cliche for a good reason, though. My spice rack and tea cabinet always have the perfect ingredients for my spellwork. Do you need a pinch of heat in your magic? Sprinkle in some cayenne pepper. Need some more comforting aspects in your spell? Grab a lavender tea bag, and rip that baby open.
Every seed, leaf, stem, flower, root, bark, and rind have their own properties and magical correspondences. You can take advantage of these powers by creating a magical spice rack. It’s useful in so many ways: in magical works, in your cooking, and it also acts as a bank to store energy, just like an altar.
Shop for Quality Herbs, Spices, and Teas
First, get some great ingredients for your magical spice rack and tea shelf. Buy a little bit of everything–sweet and bitter, spicy and mild, and savory and bland. Buy ingredients for all kinds of cuisine, and get different colors and smells.
My favorite way to get new spices or herbs is to go to the health food store and buy them in bulk. It’s usually cheaper and fresher than buying individual packages from a big store.
Organize Your Magic
I know that a lot of people would love to skip organizing, but trust me–it’s important. My spice rack didn’t become magical until I wasn’t overwhelmed by a mess whenever I opened my cupboard. Before I organized, I had to had to hunt through a old bags and bottles, and I had to sniff the red powders in unlabeled bags to see if it was paprika or chili powder. Now, after putting in an hour of organization, I know what I’m getting every single time.
Get organized by buying some jars and labels, and get to work. I prefer using glass jars because it feels cleaner and more sterile than using plastic, but to each their own.
Bless Your Spice Rack and Tea Shelf
Bless your collection of herbs, spices, and teas to net some extra magic and to create a bank. Stand in front of your spice rack and take a deep breath. Touch the bottles and boxes, and feel the various energies inside of them. Commune with the energy of your special collection. Feel the potential of everything they can do for you. It’s a bank of energy just waiting to be activated with your magical intentions. Call upon a hearth deity for an extra blessing if you wish. Ask for your spice rack to be blessed. It will now act as an altar for your work.
It’s Magic Time! Feel the Energy of Each Spice or Herb
When it comes time to use your spice rack for magic, you could look up the correspondences of every herb and spice in a witchy book, OR you can just feel the energetic essence of each item to see if it corresponds with your will. Your personal opinion and intuition of the spice or herb will likely be just as strong as what’s in a book.
However, don’t assume a spice will feel the same if it’s in two different forms, or from two different locations. Ground cinnamon probably will feel different from whole cinnamon bark. Two brands of ground cinnamon could be two different plant species, and from different parts of the world. This means that the energy will be different, too. When in doubt, feel it out!
Work Your Magic
Select a few spices, herbs, and teas for your work. There are two basic ways to work with these correspondences. You could grab the jars or tea bags and take them with you into your ritual space to work with them there. This is a good method if you want to recite why you’re adding every item to your brew, or if you’re just feeling dramatic and have some time to kill.
The second method is to open the jars and tea bags in your kitchen, sprinkle them into a bowl or a cauldron, and take that into the ritual space. It’s a lot faster, and no less powerful. Either way will work fine.
Use the energies of the herbs and spices in your magic. Feel your will align with the energy of the plants. Of course, write down what you used in your book of shadows so you can see what works best for you.
Stock Up On More Herbs and Spices For Next Time
Buy high quality products whenever possible. Whenever you’re low on an item, write it down on a list so you don’t run out. That’ll also help you combine trips in case you forget one.
Here are a few ways I’ve used my magical spice rack:
Bay Leaf Magic: Burn and Banish
The Cleansing Power of Salt Bowls to Remove Negativity
I hope your magical spice rack works wonders for your magical works and your food preparation. Blessings!
~ Align with Starlight Witch ~
Intuitive Witchcraft Book (Llewellyn)
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The Greater Cause
Imagine what a different world we would live in, if we all worked toward the greater good.
With all that takes place in our lives, it can sometimes be easy to overlook the fact that we’re part of something greater than ourselves — a collective consciousness, the Universe, a greater cause. Because of our tendency to forget this, we might make decisions in our lives that don’t reflect that responsibility that comes with this belonging. All too often, we focus just on the short-term, tangible gain to ourselves without worrying about its consequences. Other times, we may discard the greater cause because it seems like “hard work.” The challenge is to expand our minds so that we transcend the distinction between self and others, so we are aware of how our choices and actions can impact a greater cause.
Contributing to the greater cause doesn’t have to be all about self-sacrifice. For example, if you plant a tree in a community space, its shelter will cool and protect you as well as your neighbors. Or, your reward might be in the form of the beauty that you now see in that space or the sincere smiles of appreciation from neighbors. When you serve the greater cause you also serve your greater good. There is nothing that you cannot do for your highest good that will not benefit the good of all. For example, saying no to a relationship that isn’t right for you not only benefits you but serves the greater good of the other person that you are honoring with your honesty. Saying yes to your dream job not only fulfills you but also serves the people that will benefit from your enthusiasm and productivity.
When you know you are serving a greater cause, there is little room for fear and doubt. You know that what you do will benefit others, so there is no way the universe is not going to support your efforts — even if sometimes it may not look that way. Serving the greater cause allows you to live from the space of your greatness. When you know that what you do can serve a greater cause, you are aware of your power and ability to influence and create change in this world.
MARCH 26, 2021 CAT
© 1996 Carolyn McDade
Long before the night was born from darkness
Long before the dawn rolled unsteady from fire
Long before She wrapped her scarlet arm around the hills
there was a love, this ancient love was born.
Long before the grass spotted green the bare hillside
Long before a wing unfolded to wind
Long before She wrapped her long blue arm around the sea
there was a love, this ancient love was born.
Long before a chain was forged from the hillside
Long before a voice uttered freedom’s cry
Long before She wrapped her bleeding arms around a child
there was a love, this ancient love was born.
Long before the name of a God was spoken
Long before a cross was nailed from a tree
Long before She laid her arm of colors ‘cross the sky
there was a love, this ancient love was born.
Wakeful our night, Slumbers our morning
Stubborn the grass sowing green wounded hills
As we wrap our healing arms to hold what her arms held
this ancient love, this aching love rolls on.
WHAT ABOUT UNMARKED GRAVES?
by Cathy Wallace
Unmarked graves are burial sites without visible markers. How will those who have been buried in graves without headstones be remembered?
Thanks to the BillionGraves app, there is an easy solution!
Unmarked graves become genealogical treasures once the site has been photographed with the BillionGraves app because it automatically adds a GPS location.
Locating Your Ancestor’s Unmarked Graves
But first, you will need to find those unmarked graves! Finding your ancestor’s burial locations is an important part of growing your family tree.
Knowing the location of their final resting places gives you a place to visit so you can honor your ancestors. It also provides a foundation for future genealogical research.
The first thing you need to do, is find the cemetery where they may be buried. Here are four ways you can do that:
1) Family Lore
If you have older living relatives, begin by asking them if they know where your ancestor was buried.
They may have first-hand knowledge of someone who died before the family moved to another location or who died at a time when the family could not afford to purchase a grave marker.
This can be the easiest way to find unmarked graves. But sometimes no one knows, what then?
2) Check the Death Certificate
Burial locations are often noted on death certificates. Examine them closely. You will usually find the name of the cemetery near the bottom of the page.
Sometimes the cemetery name will be abbreviated. For example, “CH” written on the corner of the certificate may stand for Circle Hill Cemetery. If there are unexplained initials like this on the certificate, check with the local county offices, libraries, or online resources to find out the names of the cemeteries in the area to see if any of them match the initials.
3) Read the Obituary
If you know the general area where your ancestor’s family lived, check old newspaper records for your ancestor’s obituary. It will often state the time and place of the funeral, as well as the cemetery where the deceased was buried.
Many old newspaper collections are now available online.
Local libraries also often have old newspaper collections. Sometimes local historical societies will do a lookup for you if you don’t live nearby.
4) Call the Cemetery Manager
It is often fairly easy to guess where your ancestor’s graves may be. They are usually in one of the cemeteries closest to their home or on the property of the church they attended.
Call the church, county clerk, or city clerk that manages cemeteries in your ancestral hometown to see if they have records of older burials. Ask specifically about records for unmarked graves.
If the cemetery is a really old one, and is no longer managed by any entity, you may still be able to get burial records by checking with the local historical society or library archives.
Found the Cemetery?
Once you have found the cemetery where your ancestor is buried, you may choose to go to the cemetery in person to search for their unmarked grave.
Cemetery managers will typically be able to give you directions to the location of the grave and provide you with a map.
Sometimes there is a space between the headstones in your ancestor’s family plot. There may even be an indentation in the ground where the coffin beneath has collapsed over the years.
Once you know who is buried in an unmarked grave, write the information on a whiteboard or piece of paper. Then take a picture of it with the BillionGraves app.
It will automatically be tagged with GPS coordinates – just as if it was a beautiful gravestone.
After you have taken the photo, step back and take another picture that shows the unmarked grave in relation to surrounding headstones. This will give it locational context – in addition to the GPS-marked satellite map – to help others find it in a cemetery.
To link those two photos together, tap the chain icon in the corner of your phone screen in between taking those two pictures.
Why are Some Graves Left Unmarked?
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There are many reasons that people are buried in unmarked graves. Here are a dozen of them:
In past centuries, many burials were made on family homesteads – especially farmland – with only a tree or a rock to mark the spot. The family may have meant to post a proper monument later. But as families became more transient, they moved away from their homesteads, including the burial site. If they did not mention it to the next generation, the information was lost.
- Financial limitations may prevent families from purchasing headstones.
- Mass unmarked graves are common during times of widespread disease or war.
- Sometimes older headstones have deteriorated, leaving the grave without a marker.
- It may reflect the wishes of the deceased to have a simple burial.
- Some families are wracked with grief and indecision during the time of mourning and intend to place a marker later.
- Others are waiting for the spouse to die so the engraving for the couple can be done at the same time but the family members don’t get around to placing a headstone.
- Executed criminals used to be buried in unmarked graves as a form of disgrace. Today, it is more common for them to be cremated and their ashes scattered.
- Famous celebrities are sometimes buried with unmarked graves so the family can avoid a multitude of visitors and have privacy when they go to the cemetery.
- Mental health hospitals often buried patients with numbers on their grave markers instead of names due to the societal stigma tied to mental illness.
- Temporary markers sometimes are left to become permanent markers. They are not very sturdy so they are sometimes run over by lawnmowers or the letters fall off.
- Prior to 1950, stillborn infants were often buried without funerals, names, or gravestones to prevent the family from bonding with the child in an effort to diminish their grief. Cemeteries sometimes place one monument for all the babies collectively.
In spite of these varied situations, the deceased is often remembered generations later. Then family descendants sometimes place grave markers for their ancestors as a token of remembrance and honor. Or they may choose to memorialize them by taking a photo with the BillionGraves app.
A Remarkable Eagle Scout Project to Document Unmarked Graves
Eagle Scout candidate Diego Gallardo of Patterson, California and his group of 30 volunteers documented the entire Patterson Cemetery District which has more than 7,800 gravestones in about two hours.
Diego’s own great-grandfather is buried there.
Diego enjoyed his Eagle Scout project so much that he decided to expand it by taking photos of the unmarked and worn graves.
Diego said, “I am taking it one step further and helping the cemetery document the unmarked, faded, and unreadable markers. To find these graves, I am walking row-by-row again with the cemetery general manager by my side.”
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“As we walk,” he continued, “I write down the location of the worn headstones and then we look them up in their computer. I write down the names and dates on an index card, go back out to the cemetery, and retake the picture with the index card next to the gravestone.”
Diego said, “The index card will be easy to read when the picture gets transcribed. This way, everyone gets documented and no one is lost or left behind.”
If you are a cemetery manager who would like to have your cemetery documented, email us at Volunteer@BillionGraves.com and we’ll see what we can do to help.
If you would like to volunteer to take gravestone photos, click HERE to get started. You are welcome to do this at your own convenience, no permission from us is needed.
If you still have questions after you have clicked on the link to get started you can email us at Volunteer@BillionGraves.com.
Happy Cemetery Hopping!
Cathy Wallace and the BillionGraves Team
Cilantro Love and Hate: Is it a Genetic Trait?
March 22, 2021
There’s a day for almost everything, so, of course, there’s an international “I Hate Coriander Day.”
Coriander, also known as cilantro, is one of the most commonly used herbs in the world, but a preference for this little leafy green is just one more thing that divides people.
For some of us, why anyone would feel such a passionate loathing for an ingredient that brings a little distinctive tang to their guacamole is baffling. While others cringe in disgust at the thought of tasting anything with what they think of as a “devil herb.”
Cilantro Tastes Like Soap
As one former 23andMe blogger said in an old ode to cilantro hatred:
“For years I believed that every Mexican restaurant my family took me to had some kind of problem with their dishwashing machine. Why else would the food always taste like soap?”
Many people have no idea that this leafy green herb can cause such repulsion, much to the chagrin of those who find it foul. For some, cilantro tastes like soap. To others, it can taste like stink bugs, dirt, or — if they’re feeling really dramatic – anarchy, pure evil, or the plague.
Cilantro Taste Aversion
Like with anything that divides people, it’s helpful to understand where the other side is coming from. And we at 23andMe are here to help with a little science.
Several years back, a team of 23andMe scientists found that there’s a “genetic component to cilantro taste perception.” The findings suggested that genetic variants in the olfactory receptors may be what contributes to some people’s distaste for cilantro.
23andMe also offers customers a Cilantro Taste Aversion Trait Report that looks at two genetic variants associated with a dislike for cilantro and can tell you if you have slightly higher or lower odds of disliking the herb.
While genetics plays a role, culture and environment do, too. Some of that may explain the differences between people of different ancestries. In the 23andMe study, we found that 14-21 percent of people of East Asian, African, and Caucasian ancestry disliked cilantro while only 3-to-7 percent of those who identified as South Asian, Hispanic, or Middle Eastern disliked it.
But clearly, your environment or your cultural cuisine isn’t everything. Genetics also plays a role in this love-hate relationship.
Gilberto Learns Something New
by Stephen Halpert
Aside from cuddling his daughter and expressing his affection: smiling and making loving sounds, Gilberto hadn’t gotten into the actual thick of parenthood. Whenever he felt a squish in Ramona’s diapers or caught the scent, he panicked and handed her off to Maria who sighed, smiled lovingly, and appeared understanding until this particular moment.
“This can’t go on forever,” she said as she unfolded a clean diaper and handing it to him.
He looked at it oddly. “Why not?” Panic filled his voice.
“Because I may be out sometime or busy and then her diaper changing will be up to you. “
“Really,” she said. “Now’s as good a time as any.”
He threw up his hands. “Why?”
“Because you’re Ramona’s father and in today’s world fathers have to pitch in equally, but even more important, she needs to become accustomed to your touch and your energy.”
He knew not to argue. Instead, he took a deep breath and made a dreadful face.
Maria ignored his theatrics. “Please unfasten her diaper, then toss it into the hamper”
He grimaced. “You mean I have to touch it?”
She nodded. “Come on Gilberto, don’t play games.”
He held his breath and did as she had directed.
She handed him a soapy cloth and a towel. “Now, wash her down.”
“She needs to be cleaned?”
Maria nodded. “That’s the best way to get poo off her skin.”
“Maybe in the tub?” Gilberto tried.
At that moment Ramona let out a yell worthy of an Indian massacre. Her mouth turned down. She stared directly at Gilberto.
They made intense eye contact. He gave her his most gracious corporate smile. The one he used in the thick of negotiations. Ramona howled even louder.
“Stroke her,” Maria urged. “Express your love for her with your voice. Sing a little melody…”
Gilberto started to hum John Lennon’s Imagine. Ramona glared, and Gilberto sensed her defiant nature.
Then he grinned. “Come on, let’s be friends, I’ll do this fast but you need to relax and giggle and not think I’m an invading army.”
He blew her a kiss and made a face. The stench from the diaper was overwhelming.
“Relax,” Maria said. “This is your first time. I promise it gets a lot easier.”
“How long until she’s trained? Months?”
Maria frowned. “That makes her sound like a greyhound. Kids are different. By the time she’s five or six this will be a distant memory.”
Then she grinned. “Most children can go potty by the time they’re two. Others take longer.” She sighed, remembering changing Joey on the back seat of her old VW.
“So, for six years I have to do this?” His expression was thunderous.
She laughed. “Don’t turn changing her diapers into a horror show. That could cause her irreparable emotional damage. Besides we’re doing it together. We’re a team, right?”
Then the belligerent little boy inside him simply said. “What do I do?”
“Man up and do it,” Maria said
“So you’re saying I better get used to it.”
“Oh Gilberto, it’s just life. Wash her off. She’s your daughter, from your seed, so what’s a little poo? There’s always waste in nature. Stop being so fastidious.”
He stuck out his chin. “Men aren’t raised to think that way. But I’m trying. Maybe we could train her just to go a couple times a week.”
“Oh no,” Maria exclaimed. “Really! This is after all your daughter.”
“Ok.” He took a deep breath and whisked the damp soapy cloth over Ramona.
Apparently, she didn’t appreciate his style. Instead of a giggle. Another long, loud bellicose howl.
Maria sighed and took her from Gilberto. Gently she sponged her off with warm water. “Sweet baby daughter, please love your daddy. He loves you more than anything else on earth.”
Gilberto saw from her eyes that Ramona was watching him very carefully. Making note of his words and actions. He knew she was so like her mother. Gilberto realized he had to win her heart. But by changing her diapers?
His device sounded. It was Ramon. “We’re coming over. Big news: surprise.”
“Ok,” Gilberto said. Maybe, he thought we can take turns changing diapers.
Ramon laughed. “Is Joey helping you with the baby?”
“Maybe someday, but not yet. What’s the surprise?”
Ramon laughed. “See you in a few.”
He grinned at Maria. “Maybe we can hypnotize her.”
She looked angry. “That’s barbaric, not funny. Tell me you’re just making a joke.”
He nodded. “Ok, yes. Sure, sure, a joke.”
Ramon, Rosa, their little girls and surprise! Lola and Agent Jones, followed them into the condo.
Lola beamed and flashed a rock worthy of Cleopatra. “We’re hooked,” she grinned.
“You and Agent Jones?” Gilberto said.
Jones grinned like a kid in a candy store. “Despite Agency policy We’ve always stayed in touch. Lola’s been a courier for us.”
“But now I’m retiring,” she grinned. “Thaddeus is going to make an honest woman of me.”
“That’s why me and Smith took such an interest in you all. We had to be sure none of you would be comprised by Karibe and his thugs putting pressure on Lola.”
Lola giggled and kissed him. She winked at Gilberto. “He’s my James Bond, my Secret Agent Man.”
Gilberto thought she sounded girlish and adolescent.
Then to everyone’s surprise she deftly reached into her mouth and extracted a hollow filling. “Load this up with data and I was off to Geneva.”
Gilberto saw a small opening in the filling.
Good enough,” Jones said. “We’re both retiring from the Agency. We’re thinking of buying a sheep ranch out west.”
Lola snaked her body around Jones and grinned. “He’s such a hunk. He can bend steel. I just love this man.” She grinned at Maria. “Hang on to the baby’s clothes. I might need them sooner than later.”
Joey came in with the little girls. “Guess what! Antonia and Sophia and are going to teach me how to change Ramona’s diapers. They just learned and said it’s easy.” He looked cautiously at Gilberto. “If that’s ok with you and mom?”
Gilberto nodded, smiled and took Maria’s hand. “Of course,” he said and smiled. From the corner of his eye, he could see the ever-watchful Ramona. He sensed she was taking in everything.
(End Book One)
After an interval of several magical tales, Gilberto will return.
Share your love for cats!
10 Health Benefits of Cat Ownership for National Cat Lady Day, April 19
POSTED ON MARCH 22, 2021 BY MARC-ANDRÉ
It’s no secret that we believe cats make the world go round. But there are still some naysayers who might believe cat lovers, cat people, and cat ladies are — as the stereotypes go — a little “crazy.”
There were once even some science-backed theories surrounding this, including regarding toxoplasmosis, an infection associated with mental and behavioral syndromes in humans that’s caused by a parasite found in cat feces. Fear not, cat lovers, because this and so many other “crazy cat lady” stereotypes and cat myths have been debunked since.
In fact, research increasingly shows that felines positively affect our well-being. For starters, there are benefits of bringing your cat to work and a pet’s affection can even break us out of those moments when we’re feeling blue. There’s never been a better time than the present to embrace being a cat lady. There’s even a U.S. holiday committed to it: National Cat Lady Day is on April 19.
In the lead up to that, Honest Paws compiled more of these health benefits of cat ownership and illustrated a few modern-day cat ladies who’ve relished in them. It’s all pared down into the infographic below. Scroll through and, go on, embrace that our furry friends make the world go round!
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CAMPING WITH CATS: THE ULTIMATE GUIDE
by Emma Deans
Camping with cats? Yes, it’s possible. It’s also a great way for your feline friend to get some exercise and for the two of you to bond in the outdoors. However, you can’t simply attach a leash to your cat’s collar, pack an extra can of tuna and head into the woods with your little campurr. If you want to ensure that both you and kitty have an enjoyable time, it’s going to take a little planning and preparation.
If you’re new to the world of adventuring with a cat, we recommend you start by determining if your kitty is right for this type of lifestyle because if your cat doesn’t enjoy camping, you’re certainly not going to enjoy camping with your cat. (You kitty will make sure of that.)
“It’s absolutely true that this is not for every cat,” Dr. Kat Miller, director of ASPCA anti-cruelty behavior research, told Adventure Cats. “A feline must be easy to handle to get the harness on and off, confident enough to explore the outdoors without fear, and not so ‘squirrely’ as to try to wriggle out of a harness and make a break for it.”
So read up on the nine feline personalities to determine whether your cat could be an adventure cat.
Also, before you head outdoors even for a walk around the backyard with your kitty, make sure you’ve purchased the right type of harness and have properly leash trained your cat. Your kitty’s first trip into nature shouldn’t be when his paws hit the ground at the campsite.
While throwing you cat into camping may work out fine, most cats won’t respond well to being forced into a new situation, and it’s very likely your cherished pet could end up injured or even lost. So do this camping thing right and brush up on all the basics before you hit the trail.
Before you go
What kind of trip are you planning?
Will you be sleeping in a trailer or doing a little car camping with a tent nearby? Purrfect. A short hike to the campsite with a kitty accustomed to hiking? Totally doable. A 10-mile backpacking trip or a few months on the AT? Uh-huh. Don’t even think about it. Not even the meownificent Millie or badass Burma are putting in those kind of miles, so please don’t spring this kind of trip on your kitty.
Never taken your cat on a trail before? Here’s everything you need to know about hiking with cats.
Is your destination pet-friendly?
Do your research before you go, and call ahead if you’re not sure if cats are allowed. While some national parks allow pets on certain trails and in campgrounds, they won’t allow them in the backcountry. Pets are allowed in all U.S. national forests, but they’re expected to be on leashes in most places and aren’t permitted in swimming areas. Keep in mind that some campgrounds will charge extra if you bring along your cat.
How’s the weather?
Check the weather before you and your feline friend head outdoors, and don’t take your cat camping during extreme temperatures. Also, consider the length of your cat’s coat — or lack of coat — before heading out on a particularly hot or chilly day. If your cat is a hairless breed or has fine, light-colored hair, he may need sunscreen.
Pack the proper gear.
In addition to your own outdoor gear, you need to bring along all the necessary items for your four-legged friend. Check out our list of the 14 essentials to pack for camping with your cat, but familiarize yourself with some other important gear below.
A cat’s gotta eat.
Pack the exact same food that your kitty consumes at home to avoid any digestive issues, and bring enough for every day you plan to camp. Then bring a little extra just in case. Keep in mind that cats need about 250-300 calories a day to maintain their weight. (Not sure how much to feed your kitty? Every food is different, so refer to the food label or talk to your veterinarian.) Also, be a good parent and pack some treats to reward your kitty camper when he makes it to the campsite.
And yes, your cat’s food goes in the bear bag at night, too.
Keep your cat hydrated.
Bring plenty of water for both of you to drink, and don’t rely on wet food to keep your cat hydrated. Your cat needs fresh water — and no, not water from streams or ponds. Such water could contain parasites like Giardia or bacteria that can cause infections. If you wouldn’t drink that water, your cat shouldn’t either, so bring along a water filter or water-treatment drops if you won’t have access to potable water.
In addition to that first-aid kit, make sure your cat’s harness and leash are outfitted with lights so he’ll be easy to spot should he get away. Or you could go the Burma the adventure cat method and outfit your cat’s collar with a radio transmitter; however, some LEDS and supervision should be all you need.
“Take LEDs to put on them at night, and keep these on all night in case you have to exit in emergency,” Craig Armstrong, Millie the climbing cat’s human, told Adventure Cats.
Also, never take your cat outside unless he’s vaccinated and on flea, tick and heartworm prevention treatment. And your cat should be microchipped and wearing a collar and tags.
Hopefully it never happens, but if your cat does go missing, be sure to have a recent cat photo on your phone to show people. (Admit it, your phone is already 90 percent cat photos anyway.)
What about a litter box?
While some cats have no qualms about doing their business in the woods, most cats prefer to have a litter box on hand so be sure to pack a small one you can fit in your tent. If you’re going to be in the car for a while, it’s a smart idea to also have access to one in the vehicle. Check out these adventure cat-approved suggestions for lightweight and collapsible reusable litter boxes, as well as disposable, biodegradable ones.
And if your kitty chooses to make the forest his litter box, clean it up just like you would with a dog. Cat feces can contain Toxoplasma gondii, a protozoan parasite that can infect any warm-blooded species. T. gondii has been linked to several health issues and can be particularly harmful to pregnant women.
The comforts of home
In addition to all the kitty essentials, bring a favorite toy or a familiar blanket to help your cat feel right at home in the tent.
Do you need a carrier?
Your cat should always travel in a carrier when you’re driving to your camping destination, and it’s a good idea to bring a carrier to your campsite as well. You likely don’t want to lug a large plastic carrier on the trail, so consider a soft-sided one that can collapse or lie flat. These type of carriers are great for camping because they provide a comfortable place for your cat to nap at night, as well as a safe place for your cat to retreat to. Burma sleeps in a carrier beside Stephen Simmons at night, so clearly it’s a practice even the most adventurous of kitties can adjust to.
You may instead choose to have your kitty snuggle up in your sleeping bag with you at night, but keeping the carrier inside the tent is a good idea in case of an emergency.
Do a test run.
If your cat has never been in a tent before, it won’t hurt to get him used to it in the yard or even inside your home. Set up the tent and let your kitty get a feel for his new sleeping quarters.
At the campsite
Keep your cat on a leash.
Don’t let your cat roam the campground by himself. Keep him on a leash or in a carrier. This is the best way to ensure your cat doesn’t wander off and encounter wildlife, eat something he shouldn’t or get into another dangerous situation.
Don’t tie your cat up and leave him.
Never tie your cat’s leash to something and leave him unsupervised. However, while you’re setting up camp, Caitlin Seida of Catster suggests setting up a picket line. “Pack a length of clothesline and tie it to two trees,” she writes. “Clear the area beneath the trees and hitch up your cat’s harness and leash to the picket line. This allows her to move freely and explore as you go about your work. Do keep an eye on her, though, to make sure she isn’t getting tangled or her harness isn’t coming loose.”
If your cat somehow does get off leash, you’ll be relieved that you trained him to come when called. If for some reason your kitty makes a dash for it, know what to do if your cat gets away.
Keep a close eye on your kitty.
From insects and plants to new scents and sounds, there’s going to be a lot going on at the campsite that your cat will want to check out. Let him engage his curiosity, but do it under your constant supervision.
Don’t let your cat munch on potentially dangerous plants, and keep an eye out for other campground pets, as well as wildlife. Your feline may be fierce, but dangers can lurk under rocks as well as in the sky. Eagles, hawks and even large owls can pose a serious danger to an unsupervised cat.
Watch that campfire.
Your kitty may be intrigued by the fire and want to check it out, so be aware of where he is in relation to it. While your cat is likely smart enough not to get close enough to singe his whiskers, he may not be aware of the location of his leash so it’s your responsibility to ensure that the end doesn’t get too close to where you’re making s’mores.
Maintain your usual schedule.
Cats are autonomous animals, but just like us they can find comfort in ritual, so don’t change your cat’s schedule just because you’re in the great outdoors. Feed your kitty at the same time of day, clean the litter box daily if that’s what he’s accustomed to, and climb into the sleeping bag at your usual bedtime.
Provide a safe place for your cat.
Whether it’s a carrier or an open car door, your feline friend should have a place where he can run if he gets off leash or becomes spooked.
“I think having the open tent door or the open truck doors, somewhere familiar with familiar smells and what not, really helps [our cat] to relax outside and enjoy camping as much as we do,” Haley O’Rourke, who camps with her cat Pistachio, told Adventure Cats.
Let’s emphasize this again: Never leave your cat alone.
It doesn’t matter if you’ve zipped your kitty into the tent or enclosed him safely in his carrier, don’t leave your cat alone at the campsite. If you want to engage in cat-less activities on your camping trip, then leave your kitty safely at home.
Remember that a cat can change the nature of your camping trip.
Cats can definitely enhance your outdoor experience. It can be magical to watch them interact with nature and downright comforting to have a kitty curled up on your lap beside the campfire.
“Quandary loves watching the birds, bugs and fire crackle,” Erin Verplaetse told Adventure cats. “She sleeps like a rock, snuggled in my bag with me at the end of the night.”
Plus, cats can clue you in to parts of the natural world you might have overlooked, according to Craig Armstrong, who frequently camps with his cat, Millie.
“You see things you would not otherwise see,” he said. “You get lower to the ground, you move slower, you notice things she checks out that you would have walked right past.”
However, there are drawbacks to camping with cats because it puts limitations on what you can do. After all, just like at home, your cat will be the one calling the shots. And as all good pet parents are conscientious, having your fur baby with you in the outdoors can cause a bit of anxiety.
“I’d say the only disadvantage there is to camping with Stash is that sometimes I can’t fully relax because I’m constantly making sure he hasn’t gotten too comfortable and wandered off into the woods,” said O’Rourke. “Even though he sticks around the truck and never has gone too far. I am slightly obsessed with my cat and, like a lot of pet owners, think of him as my child.”
Be sure to take all of this into consideration before going camping with your cat.
Now that we’ve got all that important safety and preparedness information out of the way, let’s just say that you’re going to have a meownificent time. After all, you’re camping with your cat!
Georgia’s Weekly Horoscope: Sunday, March 28, 2021
Oh my, April is arriving in style! This week Mercury will move into Aries to join the Sun and Venus already in Aries to create an imposing fiery trio! Everyone will be direct and to the point. Quick and fast. In and out. “Finito!” “Vamonos!” Meanwhile, fiery Mars in Gemini continues to stoke our desire to talk, explain, listen, whisper and relish gossip. (“I heard she got the house, the car and the plane and he kept the cabin at Silverstar?”) The slower moving planets are all where we left them. This means that overall, this will be a high-energy week that is fast-paced and definitely, a bit competitive. (My partner and I laugh about how competitive we are. But I laugh more.)
Aries (March 21-April 19)
This is a powerful week for you! The Sun, Mercury and Venus are all in your sign. Naturally, the Sun will give you energy and a chance to replenish yourself for the rest of the year. Mercury will encourage you to express your POV to everyone. Your mind will be busy; you will be talkative; and you will want to get out and hustle! (And travel, if you can.) Fortunately, Venus in your sign will soften some of this cheeky energy and help you to be charming and diplomatic with everyone. Your warmth and friendliness will melt those who are close to you. Incidentally, this is an excellent week to buy wardrobe goodies. (Check the Moon Alert.) Your ruler Mars will make you unusually persuasive and heighten your desire to communicate verbally, by mail, or by smoke signals.
Taurus (April 20-May 20)
“May you live in interesting times” was a Chinese curse. This week will be interesting but you need not be worried. Nevertheless, the powerful energy from the Aries trio (see All Signs above) will stir up hidden things for you. On the upside, it will promote your ability to research and sleuth out information and hidden answers. It will also attract secret love affairs to you. However, it can stir up suppressed psychological energies regarding unresolved problems in relationships. If this energy surfaces, be aware of your behaviour. In particular, you might be more aggressive than usual about financial matters, cash flow or your possessions. (Twenty years from now, will this matter?) Keep things in perspective – stay chill.
Gemini (May 21-June 20)
A lovely, friendly week ahead! You’re in top form! (With fiery Mars in your sign who would expect less?) Do remember that this energy from Mars in your sign, (which lasts about six weeks) can happen only once every two years. This means now is your chance to show the world what you can do! Meanwhile, all this fiery energy from the Aries trio mentioned in All Signs above, will promote your interaction with friends and groups. Your exchanges with younger people and artistic, creative people will prompt you to think differently about your future. You might decide to reach for more exciting possibilities? You might want to change your appearance? Very likely, you will realize life isn’t a rehearsal – this is the real thing. Go for baroque!
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
This is a powerful time because that trio of Aries energy that I mentioned in All Signs above is sitting at the very top of your chart! All hail, Caesar! You make a great impression on others now. Your conversations with others will be well timed and to the point. In fact, you will schmooze with bosses and VIPs so well, a flirtation might begin with someone? Actually, this is more likely than you think because the influence of Mars will encourage a secret love affair. (You cheeky devil.) Since this is a strong influence, and we all know you love an adoring peanut gallery – be mindful that it would be foolish to threaten a permanent relationship with a mere bonbon.
Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)
Your urge to travel and do something to expand your horizons is stronger than ever this week. This is because now there is a trio of Aries energy in your fellow Fire Sign encouraging you to explore new avenues in publishing, the media, medicine and the law. You will be keen to take courses and learn more. Obviously, as part of this desire to expand your world, travel would be a compelling choice. Who knows? Vaccines might permit this – but maybe not. Meanwhile, fiery Mars continues to encourage some kind of competitive situation in a group (perhaps physical sports?) Or with a friend. Do you the know tune to “Anything you can do I can do better?”
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
Your ambition is still strong! Small wonder because Mars at the top of your chart arouses your ambition for almost two months. It’s important to know that this influence can happen only once every two years. That’s why you might as well use this energy. If you want to boldly go where no man has gone before, now is the time! Meanwhile, this trio of Aries energy that I mention in All Signs above will heighten your focus on taxes, debt, shared property and even differing values with someone else. It will also heighten your interest in sex. You will be more passionate than usual. Not only that, you will attract money to you. (Now that’s a curious combo.)
Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
In All Signs above, I mention a strong planetary trio of Aries energy. For your sign, this is taking place directly opposite you! This means your awareness of partners, spouses and close friends will be more acute and more accurate. Obviously, you will learn something from this. (And why wouldn’t you because happy relationships support a happy life.) Mercury will encourage discussions, while Venus will encourage warmth and mutual understanding. This is important because your sign, more than any other sign in the zodiac, likes to have someone else sitting on the other side of your teeter-totter. You’re not a loner.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
This will be a productive week for you because this high-energy trio of Aries planets (see All Signs above) will encourage you to work harder than ever before. In fact, your desire to get organized and work smart will be paramount. You will also apply this same determined energy to improve your health. You will like this drive because Aries and Scorpio are very similar signs. In fact, until Pluto was discovered in 1930, they shared the same ruler Mars. You are both proactive and willing to fight for what you want. The difference is that Aries goes for immediate gratification – while you bide your time, waiting for the perfect moment to strike. (Yikes!)
Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
This is a delightful and exciting week for you because that trio of Aries energy that I mention in All Signs (see above) takes place in your fellow Fire Sign, which of course, offers you tremendous support – physically, psychologically and even in the everyday events of your life. (“Elementary, my dear Watson.”) This is why things will flow more easily for you right now. It’s also why you feel playful, prankish and ready for fun! If possible, this is the perfect time for a vacation. It’s also a wonderful time to express your creative energy and to enjoy rewarding activities with kids. In fact, all fun plans including social encounters with others will appeal. This week, you’re a winner!
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
Your focus on home, family and your private life has increased even more so this week because now, a trio of planets will channel your energy in that direction. For some, this will mean increased involvement with a parent. For others, it will mean you want to cocoon more and relax at home or “hide.” Many of you will use this energy to do home repairs or redecorating projects and certainly, to entertain (specially to show off what you have done). Whatever your plans, the placement of Mars will give you the energy to follow through on your ideas. This is definitely a productive week for you.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
Your pace has been accelerating for the last few weeks and this week, it will accelerate even more. Oh yes, fasten your seatbelts! In part, this is because you are encountering new ideas, new faces, new places and learning new things, which makes life stimulating! (You’re certainly not sitting around getting dusty.) But what is particularly enriching is that while all this increased stimulation is taking place, it also brings a heightened awareness to your daily world making you see the beauty of everything around you – including the people close to you. How illuminating! This is valuable knowledge.
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
No matter what is happening in your life, this week you will definitely be focused on money, earnings and cash flow as well as something to do with your possessions. For starters, many of you are thinking about moneymaking ideas more than usual. Plus, you will attract money to you in addition to which you will spend money on beautiful things for yourself and your loved ones. It will feel good to enhance your self-image – and why not? Love yourself. Love how you look. You only get one time around at this, right? Meanwhile, increased chaos and activity on the home scene are unavoidable. This could be visiting guests, renovations, repairs – whatever. Cope as best you can.
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