Life does not consist mainly,
or even largely, of facts or happenings.
It consist mainly of the storm of thoughts
that is forever flowing through one’s head. ~Mark Twain
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.
Chervil – Herb of the Month
The Celtic Tree Calendar
Fearn (Alder) March 18 to April 14
The Goddess Calendar ~ The Goddess Month of:
Month of Columbina begins 3/20 – 4/17
April 11: Bake Bread for Goddess Diana.
April 11: Day of Moon Goddess Anahit.
April 11: Nehelenia’sDay (Celtic Goddess of the Dead)
April 11: Licorice Day. A cup of licorice tea, anyone? An immune-system booster, licorice helps to protect against upper respiratory infections.
April 12: New Moon in Aries.
April 12: Cerealia, 8 day Festival of Ceres.
April 15: Roman Day of Tellus Mater.
April 16: Feast of Hiketeria to Honor Apollo.
April 16: Margot Adler born, 1946.
April 16: National Stress Awareness Day–even with a postponed tax date, there’s plenty of stress. Relaxing choices: a cup of mint tea, a relaxing scented bath, one of the Darling Dahlias mysteries.
April 17: Festival of Goddess Astarte.
April 18: Step outside and watch for bees, doing their spring thing.
GrannyMoon’s Sunday April Classes at Sticks and Stones, Fairfax, VA
April 18: Face to Face Class: Noon–2:00 ~ The Magick of Crystals
Current Moon Phase: Waxing Moon
Time: From New Moon To Full (Approx. 14 Days)
Goddess Aspect: Maiden
Associated Goddesses: Artemis, Branwen, Eriu, Nymph, Epona
Magickal Attributes: Invoking Beginnings, New Projects, Ideas, Inspiration, Energy, Vitality, Freedom. Workings On This Day Are For “Constructive” Magick (Love, Wealth, Success, Courage, Friendship, Luck Or Health.)
Perform magic on waxing moons to attract a new quality or behavior, to increase the light within, to attain personal and spiritual growth and greater awareness. The quarter moon suggests a period of overcoming obstacles and continuing on the path to growth.
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 members complete 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.
Living with Moon Magic
Stacy Adams email@example.com
April 12, 2021 – April 18, 2021
The second week of April is filled to the brim with energy and features eight aspects and a sign change. O.M.G.
We begin the week with a decent boost of energy to help tackle tasks that need some extra gumption and old-fashioned elbow grease.
Midweek, financial activities will receive a needed assist from Lady Luck. Financial investments and business matters will surface, take advantage of opportunities that come your way.
This weekend you may need to battle the demons in your head as insecurities and fears may surface.
Recommended Candles: Luck Affirmation, Energy & Will Blessed Herbal, Sweet Grass World Magic, Poof Wicked Witch Mojo
Here’s what you missed on CoventryCreations.com this week…
Subpoena Your Inner Hero
So, this month we enter the first full month of spring in the Northern Hemisphere (autumn in the Southern Hemisphere) and April begins where March left off – a bit of relief from the cosmic energies of the last 15 months with some minor hiccups until the end of the month when the astrological storm begins once again.
New Moon in Aries on April 11, 2021
The New Moon in Aries occurs on April 11th. The Aries New Moon urges you to climb higher fearlessly and go after what you want. Yet, if you are still stuck at the bottom of your mountain, Aries wants you to know that determination and courage are what you need to break through what is holding you back.
Card of the Week: The Sun
The Sun appeared for us back in February, and it’s revisiting us this week — representing fun, warmth, radiance, and positivity! How will you bask in the energy of the Sun this week?
This beautiful, warm energy is a reminder to be optimistic. Know that positive energy will follow, bringing you joy and happiness.
Can you feel it? This week you’re full of energy and can already sense the success and abundance flowing your way. Radiate who you are and what you stand for! Tap into that confidence and trust that everything will work out.
If you’ve been having a difficult time, the Sun has a message for you: things will get better — a lot better! Through the challenges along your path, you’ve been discovering who you are and why you’re here.
Ask the Tarot: What fills you with positivity and enthusiasm for life?
New Moon Blessing Ritual
APRIL 11, 2021 BY NAJAH LIGHTFOOT
She goes away. We’re forced to wait and believe that she will return. We cannot see her with our physical eyes, yet we know she remains in her orbit high above the earth. It is us who must wait for her return.
A new moon calls upon us to have faith. It signals a time of new beginnings. For this spell you will need a black candle, a fireproof candle holder, a saucer, and salt.
Place your black candle in the holder, then set it upon the saucer. Pour a circle of salt around the base of the candle. Light the candle and say:
Though darkness surrounds me, I am
filled with light. I trust in the universe
on this moonless night. I await new
beginnings and new opportunities.
Allow the candle to safely burn out. Place the salt on your altar.
Earth Healing on Arbor Day
APRIL 10, 2021 BY BLAKE OCTAVIAN BLAIR
On this date in 1872, the first Arbor Day was celebrated in Nebraska. This is a perfectly pagan holiday, as it was created to promote the planting of trees. I can’t think of a more perfectly aligned holiday for earth-based spiritualities!
Today, either plant a tree or pot or repot a houseplant, and if you’re able, make a donation (even a small one) to a tree or other environmental conservation organization. During any of these activities, hold the intention that the growth of the tree or plant you planted carry your magical intent of healing the planet as it grows. See the tree’s green glowing light gently wrap around the planet as its roots grow deeper and its branches grow taller. As the green light spreads, hold the intention that other people will also have the realization that trees and the earth are vital to preserve.
Moving the Rain
APRIL 09, 2021 BY ELIZABETH BARRETTE
Spring brings rain in many parts of the world. Sometimes this is welcome, and other times not. Too much rain can cause flooding, while other parts of the land get none. Here is a spell to send unwanted rain where it is needed more.
Gather these items:
- A large map of your continent
- Several small containers, such as shot glasses or bowls, one bigger than the others
- Some water (rainwater if possible)
Check the weather conditions on your continent to find out where it is wet and where it is dry right now. Place the map on your altar, then put the big container over where you live and the smaller ones over locations where there currently is also rain. Visualize the current rainy weather in your location. Then say:
We give thanks for the rain, but
others need it more. Please give
our rain to (name of dry area).
Pick up the big container and move it to that part of the map. Visualize the rain in your location moving to that dry location. ( The smaller containers remain in place, since you are not trying to move that rain.) Then you can clean up the altar.
APRIL 08, 2021 BY DALLAS JENNIFER COBB
Today in Japan, Hana-Matsuri is celebrated. A combined celebration of spring , traditional Japanese culture, and quite possibly Buddha’s birthday, the festivities are abundant and gorgeous. Imagine lots of flowers, costumes, and kimonos! Today, perform your own “cultivating tradition” spell.
Choose some small icons that represent your cultural, religious, and familial traditions. My origins are in England, Scotland, and Ireland. Easy associations are tea, shortbread cookies, and my Claddagh ring— a traditional Irish symbol of love, loyalty, and friendship.
Place your cultural icons on your altar. Dress in traditional garb or wear jewelry handed down through your lineage. Safely light a candle to illuminate and warm your traditions. Make a traditional drink or food, and as you sip or nibble, know that your traditions live on within you. As you pay sacred homage to your traditional roots and ancestry, know that they enrich your life and community. Be sure to extinguish the candle.
Inspiration Incense and Charm
APRIL 07, 2021 BY DEVIN HUNTER
Mercury, ruler of the mind and communication, is currently moving through Aries, the bringer of new beginnings and a can-do attitude. This pairing is auspicious for those of us who are engaged in the arts, as it can help us tune in to our muses and break through creative blocks.
Begin by making the following incense recipe:
- 1 tablespoon ground sandalwood
- 1 tablespoon ground rosemary
- 1 tablespoon ground copal
As you burn the incense over charcoal, say the following charm:
Spirits of inspiration, I conjure thee.
Be here now; reveal yourself to me.
Open the doorway and
unblock the mind.
You have the key to what I need to find.
Blow Out the Old
APRIL 06, 2021 BY DEBORAH BLAKE
Spring is finally in the air, both literally and figuratively. If you open your window, you can probably smell a new freshness and hear the birds changing from their winter songs to the ones they sing in the spring. Depending on where you live, there may be the scent of flowers growing. Even in the city, the air will smell cleaner and you will sense the potential for growth and new beginnings. Throw open a window—or all of them—and use a small hand fan or scarf to waft the air over you. As you do so, say:
Spring air, so fresh and clean,
Blow away the cobwebs of winter.
Clear my mind and spirit.
Bring in your energy for new growth
And the potential for positive change.
Thank you, air, for all
you carry with you
And for all you carry away!
Blessed be, O power of air.
Dandelion Perspective Spell
APRIL 05, 2021 BY SAPPHIRE MOONBEAM
April 5 is National Dandelion Day in the US. Dandelions are viewed by some as weeds, but a weed is simply an unloved flower. This spell will help with balance, power, and a change of perspective.
Gather up dandelions for your altar or sacred space. Place stones and crystals around the flowers in a circle. Use yellow calcite for positive energy and yellow jasper for balance, and add clear quartz crystals to amplify your magical intentions. Chant these words at least three times:
Bring me a perspective that is new.
Help me change my point of view.
I seek balance and I seek power. Allow
me to grow like this beautiful flower.
Keeping an open mind is best
for me. I am grateful for your
guidance. Blessed be!
Offer the dandelion flowers at the base of your favorite tree in gratitude to the Earth Mother for her endless wisdom and bountiful gifts.
How to Use Everyday Objects for Folk Fortunetelling
BY CORY THOMAS HUTCHESON
Eggs and Gemstones
When you imagine someone “fortunetelling,” what images come to mind? For a lot of people, it’s a crystal ball or a stack of tarot cards. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with those methods when handled with care and thought, but as many witchy folk know, divination goes well beyond what so often gets portrayed by Hollywood. For those inclined towards folk magic, the tools of prognostication and metaphysical diagnosis are often both a bit strange and incredibly commonplace. That’s because divination is so commonplace in North American folk magical practices, and therefore it makes use of commonplace objects. Diviners, however, often use those objects in uncanny and unusual ways, which renders them powerful tools for gaining insight into worldly (and Otherworldly) problems.
Below I offer an exploration of a variety of folk magical divinatory methods making use of common objects. What you find here is drawn from the pages and practices of American folklore (a subject about which I am deeply passionate, as evidenced by my rather massive book on the subject). No matter who or where you are within North America, chances are there are similar practices around you and within your own communities if you look for them.
Sieve and Shears: A sieve—a straining device most often used for food—could be suspended on the end of a pair of shears or scissors to answer questions. These were often used in fortunetelling games (not dissimilar to games like MASH or those little paper fortune tellers that kids used when I was growing up). If the sieve began rotating clockwise when a question was asked, it indicated “yes.” If it went counterclockwise or fell off balance, that was a “no.” In a bygone era, a sieve would have been made from materials like willow withes, which have their own magical lore (as they are often used to bind a witch’s broom, or “besom”). The sieve and shears method even appears in Aggripa’s Three Books of Occult Philosophy, published in the sixteenth century, so the practice has a decent pedigree.
Bible and Key: The use of a Bible or other book for divination is known as “bibliomancy,” and it’s a subject I’ve written about before on my own website in terms of folk practice. In most cases, book divination is done by turning randomly to specific passages and reading the first thing found by pointing at the page, a process known as “scanning.” There are more prescriptive methods, too, such as predicting fortunes based on one’s birthday by indexing them to particular Psalms based on gender and date. One method, however, that we find imported from Europe and fairly well-known in areas settled by English, Irish, or Scottish-speaking colonizers, is the use of a Bible and key. The key is inserted into a Bible (sometimes at a specific passage such as Psalm 49), then the book is bound up tightly so that the key can’t slip out. The person making this charm suspends the key between their fingers, using the Bible as a sort of pendulum weight, and asks questions. The key will begin moving in response to queries, with the reader needing to establish which direction means “yes” and which “no” at the beginning of the divination session. This method is even mentioned in Reginald Scott’s Discoverie of Witchcraft from 1584, so it’s quite old!
Coins and Cards: Plenty of people know about using tarot cards for divination, but in recent years a burgeoning vogue has appeared for learning to read fortunes using playing cards. Playing cards derive from the same sources as tarot cards (with most scholarship suggesting all such cards emerged from games involving tiles printed paper cards from places like India and China). So it makes sense that playing cards have just as much a place in fortunetelling as their better-known tarot cousins. There are a wide variety of methods for reading them, ranging from the very detailed and intricate Lenormand card system to the Spanish method involving removing all the Queens to variations found in places like Kentucky or other parts of the American South that were often codified in well-known rhymed verses. It seems most readers had their own particular methods based on years of practice and fine-tuning, so each person’s approach might inspire someone else but be distinctly different as well (I am no stranger to this phenomenon, as I have even written a book about my own method for doing readings and then interpreting them by linking them to folk or fairy tales). Similarly, coins are incorporated into divination in a few ways. One divinatory ritual known as the “Calling Circle” involves surrounding a young baby with a variety of objects like coins, a knife, a Bible, and a whiskey bottle, and then seeing which the baby chooses. If they choose the coins, they will go into banking (or, depending on your interpretation, be stingy with money), while the other objects indicate a life of violence, holiness, or vice, respectively. The Chinese fortunetelling system known as the I Ching also makes use of coins in some cases, interpreting them through a process known as geomancy.
The Egg and Glass: This method is simple enough that you can go to your kitchen and do it anytime (so long as you keep eggs on hand). There are several different variations on this practice. One of the best-known is the limpia found in Mexican and Mexican-American curanderismo. In that system, the egg is usually used to cleanse a person of spiritual maladies by rubbing them and praying. The egg is then cracked into a glass of water and interpreted based on the shapes that appear, such as bubbles or “curtains” of egg whites draping down like ghosts. Spots on the yolk or foul smells can indicate witchcraft or curses as well. This method was also connected to the Salem witch trials, as an account (published a good bit after the trials were done) indicates that some of the young women involved in the early hysteria had been playing a game called a “Venus glass,” in which an egg was cracked into water and then read or interpreted to provide information about future husbands.
Ring and Hair: The last method is one used in very particular circumstances, but one that might be adaptable to even broader work by a clever folk magician. In parts of the rural South and even into the Midwest, a woman can discover the sex of her baby by taking her wedding ring and suspending it by a piece of her hair over her tummy. If it moves back and forth, it indicates a girl, while movement in a circle usually indicates a boy (although some sources wind up reversing these, so it’s a good idea to ask the ring to show you which is which first). While this is almost exclusively used in pregnancy situations in folklore, I can easily imagine someone seeing the links between things like marriage, birth, and more as indicative of other fortunetelling possibilities (such as asking the ring to help choose between various potential suitors).
These methods are simply a small handful of the incredible variety of everyday divinatory practices found in American folklore. Truly, almost anything, from dish rags to brooms to broken plates and dropped knives, could potentially tell a tuned-in reader about what they might expect to happen.
What makes these methods so valuable to us today isn’t just the actual practices, but the sense of “ordinariness” that we see in them. While it’s all well and good to collect tarot decks like they’re going out of style (and I do the same with playing card decks, so I’m absolutely not judging!), understanding that everyday methods of divination are valuable and rich traditions of their own can help us figure out what works best for us. You may be the sort of person who can divine based on the way your soup boils on the stove, or the way smoke rises from a candle you’ve extinguished, or even which song comes up next on your Spotify playlist. All of those are the sort of folk magic our forebears would have turned to, and they can be sources of insight and inspiration to us today, as well.
Whatever method you turn to, I encourage you to look within your folk communities like family and neighbors (and family here can be chosen family just as readily as anything biological). You’ll likely find plenty of divinatory possibilities if you just listen, pay attention, and ask the right questions. Which is really what divination is all about, right?
Heartwings Love Notes 978 Simple Fish Soup
Heartwings says, “Sometimes the simple recipes are the most delicious.”
One of the staples in our household is a fish soup made very simply and rather quickly, that is a great favorite with my fish loving husband, Stephen. He grew up in Providence Rhode Island, and spent his summers in Narragansett Pier as a boy. When he was quite small his father began to take him with him to Galilee, Rhode Island to some of his favorite places to buy fish. While there they would indulge in raw cherrystones and sometimes oysters, freshly shucked for them and handed over.
As for myself, I never had anything fancy in the way of fish. My mother served it on Fridays as a matter of course, and I don’t remember her doing anything much to it but bake it in the oven. Her seasonings were ancient and came out of a set of square white jars with red shaker tops that sat on a wooden rack in the kitchen. After her many years of a pinch of this or that, they were pretty dried out and tasteless. She was a very plain cook and tried to keep us healthy with simple basic food cooked to nourish.
My fish soup starts with some cod purposely left over from another meal. When we buy the fish, we usually get about ¼ pound or so more than what we need. I bake it simply, in coconut milk -found in the health food section of the supermarket in a carton, not a can. Baked at 350 with the coconut milk poured just to surround it, the cod is tasty. I usually bake it 25 to 30 minutes depending on its thickness. After we eat, I save what’s left in the cooking fluid and plan to use it within a week or less.
To make my soup, sauté a cup of chopped celery and a cup of chopped onion in 2 tablespoons of butter in a large saucepan. When celery and onion are transparent, add 1 teaspoon each ground garlic granules, lemon pepper, and thyme–to taste. Add 2 cups water, bring to a boil and simmer for about 20 to 30 minutes, until vegetables are soft. Add ½ to ¾ cup raw peeled medium shrimp, (tail on is fine) and ½ to ¾ bay scallops. Add reserved cod plus liquid, and another 1 to 2 cups coconut milk. Bring back to a simmer, cook until shrimp turns pink and enjoy! If you wish, you can prepare the base ahead and add fish ingredients just before serving to four or more.
It is so nice to have plans for leftovers, and I wish you happy ways with them.
Blessings and best regards, Tasha Halpert
P.S. Do you have interesting ways to cook fish? Or with leftovers? Care to share? Your comments and what you share make my day. Thanks in advance for writing to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more Lovenotes, visit my website heartwingsandfriends.com.
Green Witch Plant Profile: Wild Violets For Food, Medicine, Magick
APRIL 7, 2021 BY GWYN
There is nothing like walking into my yard on a Spring afternoon to violets peeking through the growing green with smatterings of purple and white. It fills me with so much pleasure to see the early blooms of April in Michigan. It gives me hope that the cold, gray weather is coming to an end. And when I fill my basket with violets (while leaving healthy plants and blooms behind) there is a lot I can do with the blossoms.
Violets: A Brief Introduction
Wildflowers are “weeds” to some but to me, they are wonderful additions to the yard. Violets are no exception. They have a wide variety of uses as food, medicine, and magick. So, let’s get to know this low-growing plant you will find in your grass that makes an appearance as the Winter chill is replaced by Spring breezes.
The Common Blue Violet (Viola sororia) is native to central and eastern North America. These little beauties begin sprouting up in lawns, along the roadside, within sidewalk cracks, and beside forest paths in late March/Early April. There is a variation (cultivar) that is white with purple streaks that will grow alongside the typical purple/blue. And the leaves and blossoms of the Common Blue Violet are edible.
There are many species of violet. In addition to Viola sororia, there is Viola oderata, (Sweet Violets). You can identify these by their light sweet scent. However, it is most likely the flowers growing in your yard are the Common Blue variety. But whether you are foraging from your yard or at another location, it is always good to know how to identify the plant so you are 100% sure before you use them.
Common Blue Violets have a basal rosette (a crown of leaves radiating from a stem) of toothed, heart-shaped leaves, and drooping flowers with five petals that do not produce seeds. The blossoms are blue, purple, and white.
There is a yellow variety that some people might come across when foraging. It is important to note that Common Violet does have a look-alike that is poisonous. Ficaria verna, also known as lesser Celandine or Pilewort. While the yellow flower of this plant looks different from the yellow violet, the basal leaves are very similar. So, if you are foraging and you come across leaves you believe are violets, wait until the flowers bloom to be certain of their identification.
There are a number of ways to use violets. They are a soothing herb with a gelatinous (mucilaginous) consistency. Violets have antioxidant properties which means they are a great source of Vitamins C and A. They are also anti-inflammatory which means they can support the body when dealing with discomfort, pain, swelling, etc.
Violets are helpful for coughs and sore throats due to colds, flu, and allergies by infusing them into a tincture, syrup, etc. They can be used topically in infused oil, balm, or lotion for rashes and other skin irritations, eczema, dry skin, bug bites, and varicose veins.
Violet is also said to be helpful for headaches, to calm nerves, ease emotions, and aid in achieving restful sleep when enjoyed as a soothing cup of tea.
Violet Blossom Infusion (Herbal Tea)
1 Cup of Boiling Water
2-3 Tsp Violet Blossoms (fresh or dry)
Pour the water over the flowers. Allow the violets to steep for 5-10 minutes. Strain and enjoy.
Violet Leaf Oil Infusion
1 cup Coconut Oil
1 Cup Violet Leaves
1/2 Cup Violet Blossoms
Clean, dry lidded canning jar
Fill the canning jar with the leaves and flowers. Pour the coconut oil over the plant material until covered to just above (add more oil if necessary). Put the lid onto the jar. Give a gentle twist, shake to stir the oil and violets. Place in a sunny spot for two weeks. Strain the flowers and leaves. Use topically as needed.
Violets As Food
Since these little flowers are high in vitamins, they make a great addition to salads or nourishing soups. Violets make an attractive decoration for cakes, cupcakes, and cookies. Or, you can use them in a baked recipe such as muffins. You can make a simple syrup with violets to add to lemonade or iced tea. Here is an easy recipe:
Violet Simple Syrup
1 cup Sugar
1 cup water
1/2 – 1 cup violet blossoms (stems removed) loosely packed in a lidded canning jar.
Bring water to boil in a small saucepan.
Pour the hot water over the blossoms.
Leave the flowers to steep for several hours.
Strain flowers from water into a double boiler.
Heat over low temperature and add sugar.
Stir until the sugar is dissolved.
Pour into a lidded glass jar.
Keep in the refrigerator until used.
Violets in Magick
Tiny though they may be, these flowers are powerful aids in magickal workings. They are useful for spiritual growth, protection, healing, faithfulness, love, and glamour. They are also associated with psychic abilities, dreams, and visions.
Wear violet in a small muslin bag as an amulet of protection.
Place them beneath your pillow for dreams and visions.
Allow them to grow near your door to ward off evil.
Drop the blossoms in a ritual bath for healing.
As you can see, there is a multitude of ways that Common Violets can aid you in your life. And it is easy to come across them. Ask these lovely plants to aid you as a spirit ally, then see where your intuition and creativity take you.
Gwyn is one of the hosts of 3 Pagans and a Cat, a podcast about the questions and discussions between three pagan family members, each exploring different pagan paths and how their various traditions can intersect. The most practiced pagan on the path, Gwyn is a Green Earth Witch devoted to the Earth Mother, Hekate, Brighid, and Frigga. She is a Clairsentient Medium, Tarot Reader, loves writing and, spending time with her family, as well as working with herbs, essential oils, and plants.
Let’s Breathe Through This Together
In Buddhist and yogic traditions, some have claimed to reach an enlightened state by doing nothing more than paying attention to the rising and falling of the breath. In this time of high stress and anxiety, breathing can not only help calm your state of mind but also help you to reach a meditative state. Breathing and breathing exercises are intrinsic parts of many forms of meditation the world over. It is also free and always available to you!
By paying attention to your breath – the ebb and flow of in and out – you will rapidly change your state of consciousness, begin to relax, and slowly detach from ordinary awareness. Try to focus on the dimensionless point between your in-breath and out-breath and glimpse the elements of enlightenment in that space.
Here are a few video examples of breathing exercises that Dr. Weil uses and recommends:
A Dr. Weil favorite, this breathing exercise is a natural tranquilizer for the nervous system.
The Bellows or Stimulating Breath
The aim of this exercise aim is to raise vital energy and increase alertness.
A deceptively simple breathing technique much used in Zen practice.
Dandelions: A Dandy Little Herb
by Susan Wittig Albert
Ever wonder how the dandelion got its name?
The word dandelion is the way English folk pronounced the French phrase dent de lion, or tooth of the lion. Named for the plant’s toothed leaves, perhaps? Or maybe the blossom’s color—the same yellow used to picture heraldic lions? Or both.
The dandelion’s other folk names are also descriptive. “The devil’s milk pail” refers to the sticky white sap that oozes from the broken root, used to remove warts and treat other skin ailments. “Swine’s snout” describes the closed blossom. “Puffball” is exactly the right name for the fly-away seeds. And “monk’s head” is a good way of describing the smooth, bald head that pokes up out of the grass after the seeds have blown away.
The Medicinal Dandelion
What sort of medicine? We can find a clue in the inelegant name “piss-a-bed.” The plant produces taraxacin, stimulating the kidneys to produce urine. Because the dandelion is high in potassium, a vital nutrient lost when the kidneys do their job, herbalists prefer it to chemical diuretics. In the many centuries before modern medicine, the dandelion was used to treat heartburn, liver complaints, gall stones, jaundice, and dropsy (what we now call congestive heart failure). And dandelion salve was a pain-relieving standby in many medicine cabinets.
The Culinary Dandelion
Your backyard dandelions (if they haven’t been sprayed with something noxious) can also put in an appearance at your table. The leafy greens are a zestier version of arugula and add a nice bite to raw spring-green salads. Cooking calms them down. Use in any dish that calls for kale, chard, collard greens, or mustard greens. Or how about a pesto? Here’s one made with dandelion greens and pumpkin seeds that will charm any pasta/pesto lover. Dandelion jelly is an old-fashioned favorite, and dandelion wine was my grandfather’s spring specialty. For a bushel of hand-picked wine, jelly, and syrup recipes, check out this Tipnut page.
Roses are red,
Violets are blue;
But they don’t get around
Like the dandelions do.
For more about medicinal wild plants, cunsult these useful guides:
A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants and Herbs (Eastern and Central North America), Peterson Guide, by noted herbalists Steven Foster and James Duke
Identifying and Harvesting Medicinal Plants in Wild (and Not So Wild) Places by Steve Brill
Bigfoot Stick Structures
by Ghost Hunting Theories
With regards to our tall feral neighbors, some behaviors catch our attention, such as infrasound, screaming, wood knocks, and especially the stick structures.
Let’s talk about some of the possible reasons for stick structures and review some of the most amazing formations to be found.
Some theories involving stick structures include –
Marking territory for a clan.
A hunting blind.
As the structures aren’t always little lean-to’s, they are also found in the form of an X shape or arched bow, it is generally believed each construct means something different.
In studying arches and X’s, I’ve come to find a pretty consistent use of X marks where the human land begins. It’s as if they know others of their kind or their own clan going through an area needs to know “bow” please enter into our land and “X” please don’t pass as you are close to humans. This makes sense as one thing they need to know as they travel on foot is the knowledge that the local clan has about the area. There isn’t time to spend days and weeks and months studying a piece of land for human areas and safe areas, but if they pass the knowledge to everyone of their kind, they save them time and effort.
As it has come to horse mane braiding, I’ve found if a Bigfoot is traveling along new areas, the rural places are their preferred course. In rural areas near woodlands, you find horses in pastures. If the manes are braided, the clan could be letting others know that there is a clan in the area.
These subtle constructs using nature, such as limbs and horse manes can elude humans, but be the very “natural” looking markings that they seek for knowledge. They can’t put out a sign “hey the Enoch Clan is here” or “don’t go that way, there’s humans,” but they can do it in ways we are oblivious to.
That being said, the stick structures particularly are of interest as they almost always involve a base tree, whether standing or broken off, that limbs are stacked against, woven, and formed into a kind of tiny house. One that almost invariably does not fit the size of a human.
But, in some private studies among Bigfooters in our research group, the Bigfoot do have a kind of daycare situation in which very young ones are left in a kind of nested area near a tree. The wee ones play games with tree bark and try to abide by the rule to not stray.
My theory on these structures are they are built for the wee ones and guarded by one sentinel at the opening, they will be easy to protect. The concept would be to place the toddlers within and have one adult sitting guard.
These Bigfoot daycare centers make good sense as it is the best way to wrangle wee ones and also to teach them to stay near the trees for protection. In other words, hide at the tree; a lesson hiding and feral parents would want deeply embedded in the next generation’s psyche.
Let’s have a look at some of the best documenting of stick structures I’ve ever seen. This comes from the fantastic and insightful channel Southern Ontario Sasquatch. This researcher appropriately calls them “wood nests.”
There are plenty of reasons for stick structures, including a human-made hunting blind, but when it comes to the work of the Forest Ones, it would appear that these are not there for ornamentation as their prime directive is not to decorate the forest, but to remain cloaked and ignored.
12 Cemetery Superstitions
by Cathy Wallace
Cemetery superstitions from the last century or two may have more influence over how you behave when it comes to family funerals and burials than you might realize.
Have you ever worn black to a funeral? Did you travel from a funeral home to the cemetery in an unbroken procession of cars? Have you ever sent flowers to the family of the deceased?
Why did you do those things? Tradition? Where did those traditions come from? Many of them came from century-old cemetery superstitions.
In this blog post, you will discover 12 cemetery superstitions from the Victorian era that still haunt us today.
Cemetery Superstitions #1: Wearing Black
The custom of wearing black at funerals is an ancient one, but it became more popular during the Victorian era. Black was believed to make the living less visible to the spirits that came to accompany the deceased into the afterlife.
After all, they didn’t want the spirits to make any mistakes and take them along too!
If a family could not afford black clothing, it was acceptable to wear a black armband. Widows were expected to wear black for two years after their spouse died. But during the last six months of this period, they could add some trim in grey, white, or lavender.
For women who were mourning the loss of a parent or a child, it was appropriate to wear black for one year. The typical period of time to wear mourning garb for the passing of a grandparent, sibling, or close friend was six months. If an aunt, uncle, niece, or nephew died, they were expected to wear black for just three months.
They must have had quite a dark wardrobe!
Cemetery Superstitions #2: Stop the Clock
When someone died, clocks were stopped at the moment of death. For practical reasons, this would allow for an accurate doctor’s report and death certificate.
But it was also said to be out of respect for the dead. Time had stopped for their mortal life and so their spirit must not be rushed into leaving too quickly by allowing them to notice the passage of time.
When the family’s mourning period had ended, they started their clocks again – symbolic of it being time to move on to another period of their life.
Cemetery Superstitions #3: Draw the Drapes
For our ancestors, visitations and funerals were often held in the home of the deceased. The body was laid out in the front parlor.
As soon as someone died, it was customary to quickly close the parlor drapes. This was believed to be a way to keep the deceased’s spirit from leaving too quickly.
Even today, funeral home visitations are usually held in a room called the “funeral parlor”. It is made to look like a household living room and often has closed draperies somewhere in the room.
In some parts of the United Kingdom everyone on their street closed their draperies when someone in the neighborhood passed away. Children were taught to be quiet near these homes or play someplace else.
Cemetery Superstitions #4: A Kiss Good-bye
It’s potentially the saddest part of a memorial service, where the inevitable must be faced, and having celebrated a life, we must say our final farewell.
Today, it is common to stand in line at a “viewing” for a chance to speak a few words to the family and then to walk past the coffin. When there is an open casket, many people reach out to touch the deceased one last time.
This was even more common in previous generations, where it was customary not only to touch the hand or heart of the deceased but to give them a kiss.
It was thought that the bestowal of a kiss would keep the living person from dreaming about the departed one.
Cemetery Superstitions #5: Saved by the Bell
In previous generations, it was sometimes difficult to tell if someone had actually died or if they were just in a coma. So craftsmen began putting bells on the top of coffins with chains that ran to the inside for the deceased to pull. Then they could ring the bell if they woke up.
This is where the expression, “saved by the bell” comes from.
Cemetery Superstitions #6: Leave Feet First
If the deceased was carried out of the home headfirst they might look back and call another family member to follow them into the afterlife, so they were always carried out feet first.
Cemetery Superstitions #7: Keep a Lock of Hair
Historically, giving a lock of your hair to someone has been considered a sign of love and devotion, especially when done before an impending separation.
And although it may seem creepy to us, keeping a lock of hair from a deceased family member was perfectly acceptable during the Victorian period.
Over time, funeral hair became a form of art.
Jewelry was made from hair, like this mourning bracelet. And hair was even used to make wreaths and pictures for home décor.
Our ancestors believed that keeping a lock of a loved one’s hair would keep their loved ones close to their heart. Today, we may not be as likely to keep locks of hair but we often save other mementos to remind us of deceased family members.
Cemetery Superstitions #8: Plant Flowers on the Grave. Cemetery superstitions said that if the deceased had lived a good life, flowers would bloom on their grave. But if they had been evil, only weeds would grow.
It is still common today to plant flowers on graves, particularly on Memorial Day or Armistice Day.
Another common superstition was the belief that the spirits of the deceased could enter the mirrors, which served as portals to the “other side”.
So as soon as someone passed away, family members rushed around covering the mirrors with blankets or cloths.
Wealthy families kept black crepe on hand for this purpose.
If it was decided that the mirrors did not get covered soon enough, and the deceased’s spirit was stuck in the mirror, breaking it would release them.
Cemetery Superstitions #10: Graveside Picnic
During the Victorian era, it was common for people who lived in London, Paris, New York, or any large city to take a day-trip to large park-like cemeteries in the countryside.
Funerals were often an all-day affair so mourners brought along a picnic lunch. They packed dainty ham sandwiches, little lemon cakes, and tea in a basket to be eaten on blankets on the grass. This gave them leisurely time to reminisce about their departed loved ones and ancestors buried there.
Some undertakers even rented “picnic wagonettes” and helped to plan “pleasure parties” at the cemetery.
But they had to be careful about where they set up their event. It was considered bad luck to sit or walk on someone’s grave.
Cemetery Superstitions #11: Funeral Biscuits
You may have been invited to a meal after a funeral. It’s a common custom. But where did that tradition start?
During the Victorian era, a funeral mass or memorial service was often held at a local church or in the home of the deceased. Bread and wine were shared, following the Christian practice of partaking of the last supper, sacrament, or communion in remembrance of Christ dying for the sins of mankind.
In time, some people began substituting cookies, known as “funeral biscuits” for the bread. The funeral biscuits were distributed by the lady of the house as she reached over the coffin and handed them to the visiting guests in her parlor.
A superstition sprung up that the guests themselves were taking upon them the sins of the deceased to allow their departed loved one to pass straight into heaven, sin-free. This practice was known as “sin-eating”.
Taking on someone else’s sins was a rough business so people started to hire someone to do the deed. In England and Wales, funeral sin-eaters were generally community outcasts who were paid sixpence for their services.
In America, the funeral biscuits resembled round molasses cookies and they were sometimes stamped with hearts, skulls, or crosses. In England, they were elongated sponge cakes, also known as “lady’s fingers”.
Funeral biscuits were also wrapped in white paper and sealed with black sealing wax and given to departing guests to take home to those who could not attend.
Following up to four days of visitations at the home, the burial occurred, and then a meal was served to close family and friends. Pork pie, a large wheel of cheese, and fruit cake might be on the menu.
Cemetery Superstitions #12: Funeral Processions
Funeral processions used to consist of walking from the home to the church, trailing behind those who carried the coffin. The deceased was then buried in the churchyard.
This was often done at night, with each person carrying a candle or lantern to light the way.
When the use of church graveyards in the cities was replaced by burials in cemeteries outside of the cities, it was too far to walk. So the funeral procession was made by train, by horse-drawn carriage, or by motor car.
Even horse-drawn hearses had lanterns on them to light the way, as in the photo above.
Today, funeral processions are usually led by a hearse, follow by the family vehicles, and then other attendees.
Small magnetic flags are placed on the hood of each car and headlights are turned on so others in the community will recognize the slow-moving convoy as a funeral procession and give them due respect.
Other travelers are expected to wait for the funeral procession to pass uninterrupted. This evolved from the superstition that anyone who interfered with the deceased going to the grave would attract the wrath of evil spirits.
Help Preserve Cemetery History
It’s good luck to help preserve cemetery history by taking photos with the BillionGraves app. Just kidding!
But it is a great way to help others find their ancestors so they can grow their family tree.
As you photograph your cemetery, and I photograph mine, we will all be able to find our ancestors!
If you would like to volunteer to take gravestone photos with your smartphone click HERE to get started.
You are welcome to take photos of gravestones at your own convenience, no permission from us is needed. If you still have questions after you have checked out the resources above, you can email us at Volunteer@BillionGraves.com.
Would you like to lead a group in documenting a cemetery? Send an email at Volunteer@billiongraves.com and we’ll be happy to send you some great tips!
To volunteer to transcribe names and dates from gravestones, go to billiongraves.com/transcribe.
Happy Cemetery Hopping!
by Stephen Halpert
Harry Silver opened the padded envelope and smiled as he removed the illustrated edition of the Collected Essays of Sir Isaac Newton. He stroked it with grateful admiration.
His wife Bessie came into the kitchen. She peered at the fat volume. “Newton? Didn’t he discover a lot?”
“More than a lot,” Harry said. “He virtually reinvented mathematics.”
She frowned. “How can there be more than a lot? Sometimes Harry I just don’t understand where you’re coming from or even what you’re getting at.”
“Back when I was in school, I read about his theory that the world would end sometime between 2050 and 2070.”
“Oh dear,” she sighed. “That’s not a happy thought. But maybe by now it’s all fixed up.”
“He wrote that hundreds of years ago.”
“Things can change, Harry. People make predictions like that all the time.”
He looked at her patiently. “But Bessie, Newton used pure mathematical principles.” He took a can of sardines from the cabinet, opened it and put them on a plate. “And nothing seems to have changed. If anything, global warming could speed up the process and even make things a whole lot worse.”
“When is all this supposed to happen?”
He shrugged. “In 50 years or so, give or take.”
“Let me get us some crackers. That’s terrible. Was he sure?”
“I’m sure he was.” Harry opened the fridge and took out the pitcher of ice tea. Then he got two glasses from the cabinet, added ice and brought it to the table. “Bessie, it’s just one of those things we can’t do anything about.” He sat down at the kitchen table.
Bessie sat across from him. “Maybe that’s how you feel Harry. But before I do anything I’ll have to consult Sarah my astrologer. She knows about things like this.”
He put sardines on a cracker. “And?” “Well if she goes along with it I think we better sell the cottage at the Pier and I’ll cash in my master points.”
“Why bother? Maybe wherever we end up you can take them with you.”
She shook her head. “Oh no Harry I don’t think they’d be transferable. Ever since Charles Goren, The Master Point Association is very strict about things like that. Otherwise, people would start throwing their master points around like confetti.”
He nodded and patted her hand. “Well if I were you, I’d keep all this under your hat. No need to cause panic. After all it’s not for another fifty some odd years from now. And whatever you do don’t bring it up when you go to the beauty parlor or by supper the whole world will know.”
Her eyes widened. “Oh Harry, you don’t have to worry about confidentially. Believe me, whatever’s said at Madam Swank’s stays at Madam Swank’s. It’s an unwritten rule of cosmetology.”
He swallowed more sardines. “Besides Bessie it’s not like this is happening tomorrow.”
She looked intently at him. “Harry how long have we been together?”
He smiled. “Forty some odd years.”
She nodded. “Yes, and do you remember on our anniversary you said those forty years went by faster than a speeding bullet. Those were your exact words.”
He looked quizzical. “I remember that line from Superman on the radio. What are you getting at?”
“Well if what Newton said proves to be true then we’d better start making plans. Sell off what isn’t useful. Maybe put our money into gold.” She lowered her voice. “You could sell your baseball card collection and I’d send my mother’s needlepoint work to auction.”
His voice rose. “Sell my baseball card collection, why?”
She touched his hand. “Harry, you can’t take them with you. Even if we were to survive, they’d be all wet and ruined. That I’m sure of.”
He sounded even more emphatic. “I don’t want to sell my baseball cards. I’ve had them ever since I was a boy.”
“Harry it’s a known fact that when there are floods things get wet. Think about it. And I’m sure that when the world ends it won’t be a pretty picture.”
He seemed momentarily stymied. “Maybe we should just forget this whole conversation. Forget I even mentioned it.”
Her eye widened. “How can I? You’ve told me something terrible and awful. I can’t just shove it aside. It’s dominating my mind.”
“I’m sorry Bessie. But when we got married, we agreed not to keep secrets from one another.”
She sighed. “Oh, go ahead and keep your baseball cards but don’t blame me if they get all wet and mildewed.”
“Thank you.”‘ He finished the sardines.
“But being known as the Mattress Czar of Pawtucket maybe you should think about having an end of the world sale. Get ahead of your competition.”
He looked quizzical. “Why? If the world’s going to end then why would anyone even think about buying a new mattress or bedroom set?”
“Harry if this is true; if the world is going to explode then I know that the only place I’d want to be when it happens is holding onto you in bed. And it would be nice to think about a new box spring and mattress just to make our final hours a little more cozy.”
He looked surprised. “You really think that?”
Now she sounded emphatic. “Of course I do. And when she read my astrology chart Sarah said that beyond anything else, I’m practical.”
He sighed and shook his head. “This is all a little premature Bessie.”
“Remember that speeding bullet remark Harry. After all, time flies.”
He took her hand. “Bessie let’s just forget all about this for now. You hang onto your mother’s needle point and I’ll keep my baseball cards. And just to make you feel better let’s go away for the weekend. Didn’t you say there was a bridge tournament you wanted to sign up for in Portland?”
She shook her head and lowered her voice. “Oh Harry, none of that seems important to me anymore. What good are more master points when I won’t have anyone to play bridge with, assuming we even survive? And if we do, I wouldn’t be able to find a dry deck amidst the rubble.”
Harry put his arm around her shoulder and kissed her. “Tell you what, how about just to be on the safe side I buy you a couple a dozen decks of playing cards to put all around the house? That way you’re bound to find at least one.”
Share your love for cats!
Why Do Cats Follow You Into The Bathroom?
~Susan Logan McCracken | Apr 5th 2021
May I ask you a personal question? Does your cat follow you into the bathroom? Do you leave your door slightly ajar so your cat can come in after you? And what happens if you close the door behind you and leave your cat out? Do you see paws reaching under the door? Does your cat scratch or leap at the door? This may be one of the quirkiest, funniest and most baffling things our cats do.
Even my docile Ragdoll would stick her paw under the door and rattle it if I left her out when using the loo. Our cat Sophie comes in and walks right back out. But Maddie solicits petting from me or my husband and sometimes plays in the bathtub when one of us is in there.
I talked with my longtime friend, pet lifestyle expert and fellow cat writer Sandy Robins, about this puzzling feline behavior. Sandy’s cat, Fudge, even followed houseguests into the bathroom. I was one of those guests privileged enough to know Fudge before her passing. Today Sandy has two adorable cats, Ziggy and Tory, who, not surprisingly, engage in this same type of behavior.
Although I didn’t find studies or scholarly articles that explained why cats follow people into the bathroom, I do think this funny quirk reinforces several behaviors we attribute to cats.
Cats Can’t Stand a Closed Door
Cats are territorial and so are passionately interested in everything that goes on in their territory. Their survival depends on it. They can spend hours observing it, and they know where the safe places are to eat, drink, sleep and do their business.
Once they learn a door opens and that there is territory behind it to explore, they want in. If there is unexplored space in your home, it almost kills them to not be able to go inside.
“It’s as though they want to know what are you doing in there and ‘May I help,’” Sandy says. She and her family don’t lock the bathroom door, but they close it completely. Yet somehow the cats are still able to push open the door and barge right in, Sandy says. When her son, who has a dog, was staying with them, Ziggy, Tory and the dog all came in. “We wanted to put up a sign that said ‘one at a time please,’” Sandy says.
My cat Sophie has figured out how to open the closet door in our guest bedroom and goes in there at night when she believes no one is looking. We’ve heard her open it. We find her in there the next morning. If cats had opposable thumbs, we’re pretty sure they would open every unlocked cabinet and door in your home.
Cats Love It When You’re Still
Cats like it when you don’t (or can’t) move and somehow instinctively know that you can’t move when on the toilet.
Have you noticed that when you’re still, your cats like to come and hang out? Whether you’re sitting at your computer, relaxing on the couch or lying in bed, most cats will either sit on your lap or near you, plop down on your keyboard or paperwork, or curl up next to you. Take this as a huge compliment that your cat wants to be where ever you are, feels safe with you and likes being the center of your attention.
Why Do Cats Follow You Into the Bathroom? Maybe They Just Like Bathrooms
Bathrooms and closets are usually the smallest rooms in the house. A room where they can see all boundaries provides the sense of security they crave. “Cats like small spaces and boxes,” Sandy says. “Perhaps they see the bathroom as our version of a box.”
The bathroom also contains some other exciting things — running water, for instance, which some cats find irresistible. Many cats like running water and will even drink from a running faucet or fountain.
Other bathroom fixtures cats like are the smooth, cool surfaces of sinks and bathtubs. Just Google “cats in sinks” some time. There’s an entire website called catsinsinks.com. A sink fulfills many feline desires: It’s cat-sized, enclosed and smooth, and provides running water.
Cats also like tubs for similar reasons. But a tub’s size makes it an ideal playground. Many people discover their cats’ toys in the tub. My cat Maddie likes to spin around and chase her tail in the tub. Sandy’s cat Tory plays in the tub, and Ziggy carries his wand toy into the bathroom.
Another feline favorite: the toilet paper roll. “Ziggy pulls the toilet paper and insists on getting the first three squares,” Sandy says. At the beginning of COVID, when we had a toilet paper shortage, Sandy thought she would have to ration toilet paper for Ziggy.
Google “cats and toilet paper” and prepare to be entertained.
If You Feel Safe, It Must Be Safe
Cats look to their favorite people for many of their needs — food, water, shelter, a clean litter box and more. But they also look to their people for their safety and security. My cats like it when either my husband or I watch them eat. Why? Because cats feel vulnerable when they eat. Cats also feel vulnerable when they’re using the potty.
Cats get a lot of their information from observing us. In the world of psychology, it’s called social referencing. Human children and animals look to their parents and guardians for how they should react to something. If something startles us, it will startle them. If we’re calm and relaxed, they feel safe, too. If you feel safe enough to do your business in the bathroom, they’re confident that both you and they are in a safe space.
Author and editor Susan Logan-McCracken shares her home with her husband, Mark, and two red tabby domestic longhair cats, Maddie and Sophie.
Georgia’s Weekly Horoscope:
Sunday, April 11, 2021
This week the Sun and Mercury are dancing with lucky moneybags Jupiter, which is a lovely, upbeat influence for everyone. On Tuesday, fair Venus moves into Taurus to stay for three weeks. Another lovely influence! Venus is the ruler of Taurus, and both Venus and Taurus love money. So, this is a happy marriage indeed. This means we can all hope to get richer or somehow “feel” richer in the next three weeks. So, stay positive and keep your eyes open. Someone once said, “Small opportunities are what big opportunities look like when they’re young.”
Aries (March 21-April 19)
You are sitting pretty this week. The Sun and Mercury are in your sign dancing beautifully with lucky, moneybags Jupiter. This encourages you to think positive and expect the best for yourself and your situation. You won’t be afraid to entertain big ideas. Furthermore, you will feel very sociable and eager to interact with groups and meet friends. This is because you feel a need to be part of something bigger than yourself. You want to make that connection. You want to be where it’s happening. This week Venus moves into your House of Earnings, which means it will attract money to you for the next three weeks. Admittedly, it will encourage extravagance. (What’s your superpower?)
Taurus (April 20-May 20)
This week your ruler Venus moves into your sign where it will stay for the next three weeks, which is excellent news for you. This will promote your desire to relate to others in a very charming way. In fact, you’ll be willing to make personal compromises if necessary because you want to get along. (Venus always likes to get along.) It’s a great time to enjoy fun times with pals or a vacation because Venus always ranks pleasure above work. This is also an excellent time to buy wardrobe goodies for yourself. Since you are working so hard to earn money at this time, why not look your best? Success is sexy! And this is your year to dazzle everyone with your successful reputation.
Gemini (May 21-June 20)
With Mars in your sign, you’re still pumped with energy! Make the most of this fabulous influence because it comes only once every two years, and you continue to have this blessing until April 23. Meanwhile, this is an incredibly sociable week! Enjoy interacting with friends and being involved with groups. Many of you will be involved with younger people as well. It’s a particularly good time for you to examine your goals and think about where you want to be five years from now – 10 years from now – to infinity and beyond! Some of you are making future travel plans (“some day”) while others are exploring opportunities in medicine, the law, publishing, the media and higher education. (A secret love affair is lurking.)
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
You make a fabulous impression on everyone this week. No question. Furthermore, you will enjoy success talking to important people as well as parents, teachers and the police. You might learn something important from a boss. You’ll also feel more important to be included in some kind of bigger venture. (It’s always hard to see the big picture when you’re in the frame.) But now -you’re at the table! You’re getting a better grasp of how things are done and likewise, how things are unfolding in your own world. This gives you a sense of personal power because you feel more in command. You’re ready for anything that comes your way – and you’ve got your recharger and just in case – your own glue stick.
Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)
This is an exhilarating week, especially in terms of publishing, the media and making travel plans, dealing with foreign countries and taking advantage of opportunities in medicine and the law. Some of you are excited about school plans as well. Yes, it’s all happening! You deserve this. (Yeah, some think you’re bossy but that’s because they can’t tell the difference between demanding and commanding.) One of the rewarding things right now is you are learning something new, perhaps learning it from important people – perhaps not. But it’s exciting to be part of something bigger. Of course, this doesn’t necessarily mean you have to change. (“But it’s all I ever wanted since I heard about it a minute ago!”)
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
You might do some wheeling and dealing about financial matters, inheritances, shared property, taxes or debt this week. (Taxes? That’s no surprise. Look at the date.) Nevertheless, this wheeling and dealing will attract money to you. It might parlay you into a bigger group that relates to your job. Perhaps it’s because you’re dealing with foreign interests? Or perhaps it will entail future work-related travel? Fortunately, your ambition is aroused, so you’re ready for whatever comes up. (You’re not getting dusty.) Meanwhile, because your appreciation of beauty is heightened, grab every chance to enjoy beautiful parks, buildings, galleries and art in person or online.
Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
Yes, it’s true that you still need more sleep. (Who has more erratic sleep patterns than you? Well actually, a few Aquarians I know.) You will be more socially involved with others this week, perhaps through your partner or through a friend. You might be introduced to new people? Younger people might suddenly be in your world. You might join a group or become involved with a group. Romance is promising; hot and heavy passion are in the picture for many. (Yes, you too.) Examine your goals. You will see that things are working out as planned and this is reassuring. Many of you will also be more involved with members of the general public in some way. In person or on-line.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
This is a super positive week for your work. You might impress bosses. You might have an opportunity to schmooze with authority figures and learn something new, which is exciting because this makes you feel part of something bigger than you. You might see how well you are progressing in your goals related to your job or your health (this is also a positive week for your health). You feel more vigourous than usual, which in turn, leads to a more pumped optimism about everything. You’re The Little Engine That Could. I thought I could! I thought I could!” (After Roger Bannister broke that “impossible feat” of running the four-minute mile -over a thousand runners have since done the same.)
Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
You are a sign that is noted for working hard and playing hard. You take things all the way! This week you will play hard. Of course, if you’re in sports, or the arts, this could feel like work. This is a very sociable week for you, which means you will be out there flying your colours! You want to talk to people in person or on-line. In particular, you might be more involved than usual with younger people. You seem to be more concerned with the bigger picture, which is of course, your style. Romance might be over-the-top. You might also be thrilled because of your involvement with kids. Something will make you enthusiastic and glad to be alive!
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
Everything to do with home and your family life will be warm and reassuring this week. Many of you will invite people over this week – perhaps your family bubble? You might also be busy doing renovations or repairs to where you live. Perhaps others will pitch in with help? Some of you might explore real-estate opportunities because this is a distinct possibility. Many of you can enrich yourself through home and family and real estate at this time. Whatever you do, you won’t be afraid to have big plans. If you need to get the permission of important people – you won’t be afraid to ask. This is also a romantic, playful week that promises social delights.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
This week you are so positive minded and optimistic, your enthusiasm will know no bounds! Your interaction with your daily contacts is rewarding and reassuring. You are also excited to be in touch with bosses and people in authority at a level where you feel included and at the same time, you are learning something. It’s exciting to see the big picture! Certainly, relations with siblings and neighbours and relatives are excellent. This is a great week to write, communicate, act or sell because your words are like gold. Meanwhile, you will also enjoy doing something to make where you live feel more attractive for yourself and perhaps someone special. Woot!
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
“Show me the money!” This is definitely a good financial week for you. You will see ways to boost your earnings because you have moneymaking ideas. Likewise, you will see ways to impress bosses and people in power with your ideas, which in turn, can attract money to you. You will be smooth, charming and diplomatic in discussions with others. You won’t be afraid to roll up your sleeves to get busy and work hard to deal with financial matters. This could involve some ambitious projects on the home front because things seem to be topsy-turvy there. (You can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs.) It’s a reassuring time for you because you see where you are in the bigger picture. It’s all good.
Weekly Horoscopes Beginning Sunday, 11 April 2021
If you’re born within a cusp period (16 to 26 of any month); you’re advised to read horoscopes of both signs covered by that period. You’re on 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:
Urgent as sudden dilemmas and unexpected changes seem, either avoid making decisions or, if that’s impossible, ensure whatever you organise is flexible. Within days you’ll be juggling yet more changes and, possibly, more options; but, also, ensure your own goals are equally flexible, because what seems disastrous at the moment could turn out to be unexpectedly fortunate, and by as early as next week.
You exude charm, personality and sex appeal. Whether single or attached, events at this time could mark a major turning point in your life. A thrifty partner is expecting you to manage within the confines of a tight budget. You’re tempted to treat yourself to one of those little luxuries you love so much. You know this will leave you feeling guilty. Money is tight and you can understand the need to economise even if you aren’t happy about it.
It should be ‘all systems go’ following the annual New Moon in your sign on Monday. True, you may be asked to take on extra responsibility and faced with clearing up a mess from the past. The political angle of all of this should not be ignored either. Fact is though, that an old war is just that – an old war. By the time the Venus leaves your sign on Thursday, it should be clear that you now need to move focus to the future and let go of systems that really are no longer working. Painful as that may be, once that’s accepted, employing fresh strategies and being in the driving seat as these are implemented should be exciting. Career wise it seems you are now refuelled and pointed in fresh direction.
Personal theme: I have!!
Earth & fixed sign: April 20 — May 20
Your horoscope for this week:
Recent challenges have been informative. Still, Tuesday’s move by your ruler Venus into your sign begins a new, and upbeat, cycle. Still, let go of what doesn’t work. This may seem unwise, if not hasty. However, with the Sun and ideas planet Mercury both entering Taurus on Monday the 19th, the tide will turn suddenly and, in a direction, as exciting as it is unexpected.
You have the energy and determination to overcome any challenge that is presented to you now. People around you look stressed and tired whereas you feel completely relaxed. It might be up to you to iron out some difficulties before a group project gets underway. Personal plans will be put on hold in order to focus on a team effort. You should be able to make up for ground lost as you head into the second half of the week.
It is perhaps time to think long-term. The annual New Moon in neighbouring Aries on Monday puts sharp focus on playing for the long-term. Yet the old way of doing this is probably just that: old and out worn. It may now be time to think differently and at least to prepare for moving in altered direction: most likely in June. The key as always, always, is in the planning. First, it’s essential that you assess your expertise and what you really have to offer. What you display by the end of this week – and especially if at interview, – is crucial. Pandemic or otherwise, a review of working practices should now be under way. With Saturn, the planet of responsibility, now pivotal at the apex of your solar chart, you are well-placed to take on a new role and even perhaps, to create it.
Personal theme: I think!!
Air sign: May 21 — June 20
Your horoscope for this week:
Ordinarily you’ve an amazing knack for showing interest in others’ activities and future plans, yet leaving decisions to them. Now, however, their choices could undermine, if not obstruct, exciting ideas or ventures of your own. Discuss your concerns frankly, then back off. While, initially, this may seem weak, not only will the individuals in question act on your concerns, their efforts will be unexpectedly clever.
You want to get ahead. A colleague who is stuck in the same place will resent your determination. Ignore their attempts to hold you back. You’re positive that this is the right time for you to go after a prominent position. The challenge will be highly stimulating. Some ideas that you have to improve your home will need a little working on if they are to be put into practice in the future. If something doesn’t work on your first attempt be prepared to try again.
It should feel as though it’s all systems go after Monday’s New Moon in fiery Aries. It should be apparent that the rest of the world is now ready to get to work – and at speed. What should be delightful for you is that there will be much to talk about. Priorities have most decidedly shifted – if not altered dramatically. Venus’ entry into Taurus on Thursday coincides with the Moon’s arrival in your sign. It’s then time for you to lay out what your revised needs are and to open discussions about your long-term dreams and goals. In alerting others to where you want to be, you are also putting down the key steppingstones to getting there. In particular, Aries, cancer, Libra and Capricorn colleagues should be particularly appreciative of the goals and strategies you set out.
Personal theme: I feel!!
Water & cardinal sign: June 21 — July 22
Your horoscope for this week:
For ages you’ve known certain elements of your life needed a rethink. Now, while you acknowledge this is urgent, you’re unsure where to begin. The insights, if not unexpected events, triggered by Monday’s New Moon help clarify it all. True, initially developments may seem both unwise and unsettling. Be patient. By the week’s close you’ll not only realise how brilliant they are, you’ll be delighted.
You don’t need anyone’s approval to do something you want to do. Seek to satisfy yourself rather than trying to live up to other people’s expectations of you. Are you single? You could meet someone special through your work. Not only will you be impressed by their accomplishments, but you also seem to have similar spiritual outlooks. If you already have a partner, sharing secrets, listening to music and having fun together will strengthen the bond between you.
You are quite capable of pulling down your shell and staying put for some considerable time. You are equally capable of lifting the shell up and scurrying off in fresh direction. That’s most likely following Monday’s New Moon in another of the Cardinal signs, Aries. Indeed, you could mesmerise someone older and gain so much respect before next weekend. Your ability to network and to relate to other people’s revised aims and objectives should ensure that whilst you are focused on your personal ‘north’, that you do so in a way that ensures you don’t crash into others en-route. An ability to swerve and avoid collision and adapt whilst holding firmly your goal should get you noticed and, by Friday, have you ‘mentioned in dispatches’ with a view to giving you a project all of your own to nurture before your birthday.
Personal theme: I will!!
Fire & fixed sign: July 23 — August 22
Your horoscope for this week:
Understandably you’re not thrilled about potential changes in elements of your work or lifestyle. However, not only are these inevitable, they’re forcing you to update familiar but increasingly restrictive arrangements. If you can’t say an enthusiastic yes, at least explore these. You’ll soon realise these updates of arrangements or future plans aren’t just timely, they’re taking you in a direction as exciting as it is unexpected.
A little humility will go a long way. You don’t have to be the best at everything. Attempts to outperform a talented rival could lead to some embarrassment. Instead of competing, you could learn a lot from working together. Remember that pride goes before a fall. Close friends are used to your playful ways but someone who doesn’t know you well may take your teasing in the wrong way. The weekend is perfect for developing an engrossing personal project and spending time with people who understand you.
As you probably know, a New Moon is said to mark new beginnings. It doesn’t always work out quite that way, but certainly, the promise of Monday’s New Moon in another of the Fire signs suggests increased desire to move forward, to feel passion and yes, to engage in a way that’s been lacking. You may be pushed towards this by a partner or colleague who is determined to see that energy is not wasted. This will likely require that you renew some contacts. Concerning as it may be to learn that someone you once relied on has now moved off in altered direction, and challenging as it may be to get them to focus until an old issue is resolved, all this could bring out the best in you. Indeed, by next weekend others may be reaching out and asking you to join their team now that they can see exactly what you can do.
Personal theme: I analyse!!
Earth sign: August 23 — September 22
Your horoscope for this week:
Rarely have you faced so many unanticipated changes, in both existing arrangements and future plans, in such a short time. True, they’ll be unsettling and you’ll wonder whether, with careful planning, they could have been avoided. Ignore those questions, instead simply allowing events to unfold. By the week’s close, things will come together in ways as spectacular as they are unexpected. After that, you’ll be thrilled.
Taking on a job you had not planned for will send the rest of your week’s plans into turmoil. Having to miss a date or special event will leave you feeling disappointed and empty. You’re making sacrifices for other people and your good deeds will not have gone unnoticed. Very soon, someone will be making it up to you. A relative will be in touch with news that gives you something important to think about. Affairs regarding children will need ironing out.
Over this last year, you’ve likely learnt much about duty and responsibility. You may also have had to grapple with property issues and what is and what is not possible. Following on from Monday’s New Moon some of those old issues are set to resurface. The good news this time, is that recent experience and acquired knowledge should result in promising conversations with those who know how to get things done. That really is this week’s big theme. With others now clearly ready to push forward you could have your work cut out to keep up. It’s long been recognised that those of your sign are excellent at-risk assessment. That’s very different to risk management. Persuading others to give you time to do your job will likely require a charm offensive. That said, as early as this Friday, and even with only a sketchy outline of what can be achieved, others should be quick to acknowledge that your input has been invaluable.
Personal theme: I balance!!
Air & cardinal sign: September 23 — October 22
Your horoscope for this week:
The week divides neatly into two parts. Initially your focus will be rethinking a range of issues, from personal to financial, some recent but many as persistent as they’ve been puzzling. Amazingly, by midweek, most will be resolved. This, then, frees you to focus on a range of promising yet unsettling ideas. The rapid pace will force you to move swiftly. Discussions can wait.
Honest communication is the key to building stronger relationships. Encourage your family and friends to talk about their hopes and dreams. You want to support them in any way you can. To do so you need to know what they are thinking. How else will you know you are getting it right? It’s important to fulfil obligations to your employer. You have an opportunity to prove what you are capable of but it will require hard work and dedication.
As of Tuesday, it could feel as though you’ve fallen into a pit of responsibility. True, at one level you may have longed for this. It’s just the timing that could be irritating. At Monday’s Aries New moon, you may feel that others are pushing you to make decisions before you’re ready. It actually isn’t the case that you are procrastinating, but you may well need a few more days to adjust to fresh cosmic rhythm. Focus presently is likely to be on self-investment and for some, developing entrepreneurial talents. In this, you may yet be indebted to those born under either Aries, Leo or Sagittarius whose to give you an energy boost just when needed could make all the difference to one of your research and development ideas moving to the next stage. Meanwhile, it might also be important to open up a dialogue (most likely with a Cancer or Capricorn) to discuss ways in which a long-term goal can be achieved.
Scorpio & Ophiuchus
Personal theme: I desire!!
Water & fixed signs: October 23 — November 21
Your horoscope for this week:
For ages you’ve managed to sidestep changes as disruptive as they’d be unwelcome. However, events between now and the pivotal Scorpio Full Moon, on 27 April, aren’t just building up to these, they’ll prove to be breakthroughs. How? There’ll be hints, but the details will remain unclear until you’re actually involved. Risky as it seems, take a chance. Plunge in. You won’t regret it.
Your ability to put yourself in other people’s shoes makes you a popular character. Friends and neighbours know they can trust you and they value your advice. It might seem as if all you are hearing these days is one hard up story after another. Your compassion knows no bounds and you won’t turn anyone who needs you away. You recognise the seriousness of a workplace situation and you will be working together with a newly selected team to put measures in place to combat this problem.
It might be as well to do a quick check on health appointments – not necessarily because anything is wrong, but to pre-empt a mini-crisis. This could also apply in the workplace where a quick audit check would be useful. It is likely that energy is now being directed in what is rapidly becoming un-productive ways. Dove-tailing this with the demands of someone apparently in charge, and who feels that so much time has been wasted will likely be a challenge. Assuring them that recent setbacks have not been ‘time lost’ but opportunity to refine and then to re-engage, could prove challenging but not beyond your capabilities. Indeed, it is highly likely that something you’ve been working on moon, the quiet, has real and long-term value. In alliance with a Taurus or a Leo you could perhaps agree to work together on presentation strategy.
Personal theme: I see!!
Fire sign: November 22 — December 21
Your horoscope for this week:
Ordinarily you’d respond to unsettling events immediately. Instead, do the minimum, and explore your options until Friday the 17th, when powerful planetary links to your ruler Jupiter indicate breakthroughs as amazing as they are unexpected. After that, your challenge is the decision to let go of certain longstanding, but increasingly unworkable, arrangements. This will free your time, mind and, possibly, heart, for what’s coming your way.
You’re becoming tired of a group project that seems to be going nowhere. One person blames another for a fault. This person blames someone else and you all travel round in circles. Instead of continuing with something you aren’t enjoying, turn your attention to activities that will bring you joy. A connection in business could lead to romance if you’re single. You could be receiving roses, a card or a romantic e-mail and romance suddenly seems idyllic.
Monday’s New Moon is in another of the Fire signs. This, coupled with career and commercial developments in the life of a close friend or partner, should put you on a learning curve. It wouldn’t be at all surprisingly if you considered undertaking a short course or even, creating one. The point is that this week is all about exchange of information. It might also be that someone close is navigating the difficult waters of maintaining one career whilst attempting to kickstart another. They may need extra support. Though administration isn’t necessarily ‘your thing’, you likely recognise that unless this is streamlined, there is danger of default and financial loss. The good news is that by applying an adjusted strategy, a plan could work and, soon after the Solar Eclipse in your opposite sign in June, pay dividends.
Personal theme: I use!!
Earth & cardinal sign: December 22 — January 19
Your horoscope for this week:
Acknowledging that seemingly unfair, if not impractical, arrangements are breakthroughs won’t be easy. Still, at least explore them. True, this means relinquishing control, and to a worrying extent. The fact is, they’re leading to changes, if not opportunities as stunning as they’ll prove to be worthwhile. If you can’t say an unconditional yes, at least consider them. By the week’s close, you’ll know why.
Your link with some of your closest friends has never felt so good. It’s almost as if you can reach into each other’s minds. If you suspect someone is worried about something, you are probably right. Listening to your intuition is strongly advised. You’re tired of having to return to tasks that haven’t been carried out properly by others. If someone is being careless, it should be up to them to clean up their mess.
Monday’s New Moon is the annual one at the base of your solar chart. This is where you kick-start plans for asset improvement and indeed, plan as to how best to move your career forward over the next six months. Discussions around positions and responsibility are probable. You might also be asked if you would be happy to act as mentor or teacher to someone who is well-qualified but as yet lacks practical experience. Venus moves into another of the Earth signs on Thursday, and what was deemed difficult in the first part of the week should then be found to be pleasurable. What seems clear is that you’re building up professional recognition and that your contacts are expanding: in particular, links with someone who’s worked with an international agency may be developing to the point where you’re working-bond becomes stronger (and perhaps profitable).
Personal theme: I know!!
Air & fixed sign: January 20 — February 18
Your horoscope for this week:
Usually, you’re the first to spot and embrace ideas or offers as exotic as they are intriguing. However, these would mean giving up far more control than you think is wise. Still, the planets aren’t just accenting their promise, the message is it’s about timely breakthroughs; and, worse, these will vanish as swiftly as they appeared. Plunge in. You’ll soon realise how wise it was.
You’re feeling lucky in love and content with your lot. Positive thinking keeps you happy and healthy. Remain alert for any chance that comes your way to further your ambitions. Whatever you take on, you will stick tenaciously to your goals and your hard work will bring its just rewards. A friend may show signs of envy or resentment. In spite of all your efforts to ease the situation between you, know when you have done all you can and accept when it is time to walk away.
Mars, the energizer is working its way through an area of your solar chart that is all about developing ideas and having fun. These desires should increase following Monday’s Aries New Moon; but yes, that could mean that others feel you’re blowing hot air and actually have no intention of seeing an idea through to the finish. Disabusing them of that notion will likely be easier after Venus arrives at the base of your solar chart on Thursday. That’s when it should be obvious exactly where you’re ‘at home’ and what you do well. Indeed, interviews taking place at the end of this week should – at the very least, – lead to something more. With it likely that travel restrictions are eased, there is also the potential by the weekend, of cautiously planning trips and reconnecting with those you haven’t seen for some time. Planning this, should increase your sense of fun yet again.
Personal theme: I believe!!
Water sign: February 19 — March 20
Your horoscope for this week:
Although the disarray certain changes would bring is worrying to you and is guaranteed to upset certain individuals whose support you need, your instincts are saying to proceed. They’re right. These are breakthroughs, although in disguise. If those concerns persist, simply ensure arrangements are regarded as flexible. While the dust won’t settle for some weeks, once it does, you’ll be relieved you decided to say yes.
You may not condone a relative’s recent behaviour but you are ready to forgive. The sooner you put this matter behind you, the faster you will be able to move forward. They won’t believe how willing you are to accept their apology. Being able to accept people’s shortcomings as well as their strengths helps keep relationships strong. Accept an invitation to do something that thrills or appeals to you. Nothing lifts your spirits more than immersing yourself in activities that excite your imagination.
The annual Aries this time on Monday, marks the annual moment the spring cleaning your finances. Obviously much depends on your age, but this may be the moment to review pension and long-term saving arrangements. This could lead to renewed contact with those who have proven skill in this area and could lead to interesting discussion before the weekend as to how best to employ a strategy that is very much in keeping with 2021 developments. Yes, you could become more interested in block chain and crypto currencies. Even if that’s not your thing, interest in new ways of working and indeed, in new companies just setting up is likely to be piqued most likely the conversations with a neighbour who is clearly got contacts in these developing fields. By the weekend, much of your thinking could feel turned on its head. You might also likely be energised to create to learn more about new systems and perhaps, agreed to join a group or task force.
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