May the world be kind to you,
and may your own thoughts be gentle upon yourself. ~Jonathan
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.
Current Moon Phase: Waning Moon:
Waning Moon Magick: From three-and-a-half to ten-and-a-half days after the full moon. From the Full Moon to the New is a time for study, meditation, and magic designed to banish harmful energies and habits.
Time: From Full Moon to Dark Moon (approx.14 days)
Goddess Aspect: Crone
Associated Goddesses: Callieach, Banshee, Hecate, Kali, Morrigan
Magickal Attributes: Banishing Releasing the old, removing unwanted negative energies, wisdom, psychic ability, scrying, reversing circumstances. Workings on this day are for banishing magick, for ridding oneself of addictions, illness or negativity, physical and psychic cleansings.
10/6 New Moon in Libra
10/6 Pluto Direct
10/7 Venus enters Sagittarius
10/10 Saturn Direct
Herb of the Year for 2021: Parsley (Petroselinum crispum, named by the International Herb Association.
Celtic Month -September 30 To October 27 – Ivy
Goddess of the Month ~ Hecate
SEP. 26 – Oct 5: Navaratri, Hindu Festival of the Great Goddess – Huge holiday in India when Goddess destroys evil and restores cosmic order
Mesopotamian Day of the Sheepfolds: Sacrifice to Goat God Azazel.
OCT. 4: Roman Jejunium Cereris: Fast Day for Ceres
OCT. 9-11: Feast of Divine Wisdom – Source of all knowledge, honoring God-Goddess as Odin-Frigg (Norse); and Goddess as Sophia/Wisdom (Christian), Truth/Maat (Egyptian), Metis (Greek), Sarasvati (Hindu), & Manat (Arabic-Sufi).
Sunday Classes with GrannyMoon at Sticks and Stones, Fairfax, VA
03: Face to Face Class: 1–3:00 ~ WitchCrafting
10: Face to Face Class: 1–3:00 ~ The Herbal Cauldron
17: Face to Face Class: Noon–2:00 ~ The Magick of Crystals
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!
Earth Signs and Omens in Nature Course
Learn to read the mysteries of nature! The course covers signs and omens, communication, seasonal rites, trees and shrubs, flowers, plants and weeds, herbs, plant magick, the Guardians of Nature and much more.
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 (GoddessSchool.com) has grown into a large and beautiful global community of women.
The Halloween Oracle Message for the Week
Sleek and Black & Lantern-Eyed
Crosses your path with a hiss
Good luck and fortune
Sweep by with a kiss
Black cats are unfortunately associated with the darker aspects of the occult. But know that you will be luckier if one crosses your path.
Stacy Adams ~Coventry Creations
October 4, 2021 – October 10, 2021
The week starts with an excellent day to check things off your to-do list. Then, on Tuesday, we begin preparing for the New Moon as the Moon moves into airy Libra.
Midweek, you are going to seek excitement and adventure out of your relationships, it would be an excellent time to take a trip or at least get away from the real world – if even for just a little while.
Weekend, stay on guard because the energy is volatile. You will need to put a watch on your tongue because it may pop off at the least opportune time leading to potential arguments and unnecessary conflict. You will notice that your mood will be directly connected to the level of your happiness. If you are not happy, begin to create a plan of change that will push you in the right direction.
Recommended: Tranquility (Affirmation), Happiness (Blessed Herbal), Keep Calm and Lavender On (Wicked Good Spray)
Here’s what you missed on CoventryCreations.com this week…
Witch’s Brew, the biggest Halloween baddies, are back on your shelf
You have been waiting for Halloween magic all year and know who to trust for making authentic magical candles that bring the zing to your witchy spells. The Witch’s Brew candles have been a standard for the biggest, baddest Halloween magic for 20 years, but you already knew that.
New Moon October 06, 2021, in Libra
It’s time to wake up, smell the pumpkin spice, and get into the Start of the Magical Season spirit — because the astrology of October 2021 is serving up all kinds of cosmic tricks and treats. Retrogrades are raging, energies are shifting, and fall’s first New Moon is bringing us important opportunities to cleanse and reset. Mark your calendars because ALL zodiac signs will feel the effects of October’s astrological happenings.
On this day, the Moon will join the Sun, and also Mercury and Mars – who are all stewing away in Libra. Since the Moon rules our inner selves and the Sun rules our outward personality, expect to feel the effects of Libra on both sides of yourself. Likewise, with Mars, the planet of aggression and passion, and Mercury, the messenger planet, you should also feel Libra influencing your passionate emotions and also your communications. And with Mercury currently in retrograde, this celestial moment makes for an unusual astrological combination.
If the first week of October feels like trudging through quicksand, you can blame the planets — because we’re kicking off the month at the height of retrograde season 2021. With a whopping six planetary backspin’s in full swing simultaneously (including the final Mercury retrograde of the year), it may feel difficult to move forward on our plans or get a clear picture of our future.
However, we’ll be able to breathe a sigh of relief on Oct. 6, as Pluto retrograde ends on the same day as the auspicious new moon in Libra — which collectively brings the feeling of a fresh start. Jupiter and Mercury both follow suit on Oct. 18, at which point communication, thinking, and logistical matters should start running much more smoothly.
Libra energy is all about finding balance, seeking the middle ground, and seeing things from both sides. Libra has the gift of being able to balance the scales so that everyone feels they are getting their fair share
With this New Moon, we enter the land of Death. The death of the year begins now, as the darkness grows even deeper in the weeks before the Light’s return at Winter Solstice. Our western culture has made death something to be feared, and so we do not welcome it in any form. But Native peoples remember that Death is only the other face of Life. If we are strong enough to face our deaths, then we will get through the initiation of death and rebirth.
As the Wheel of the Year turns to this holy season of Death, we have to honor the cycle of life and allow death in the door. We will need to release not only our personal fear of death but also our cultural one. We will have to let go of some habits that no longer serve our greater good. Addictions, fears, anger, betrayals — they taught us something our souls needed to learn. Now at this New Moon, let go of the emotions that hold us in death and see how “your mouth [will close] here and immediately open with a shout of joy there’. It’s only when we fear death that we don’t believe in “some unimagined beauty’ and the possibility of new life.
Time to Plant Your Intentions!
The new moon is a time of initiation and new beginnings. It is the time to plant a seed of what you want to grow in your life. Making a wish, an intention, a promise, or a vow is a common custom. It is believed that as the moon grows, that your intention or goal will too usually by the time the moon completes its cycle and returns full circle to new again.
For example farmers knew this, so they started to plan their harvests and seeding around the moon cycles. These farmers noticed through time passing that the seeds that took the best were seeded during the new moon. The new moon is also a time of seeding ideas and intentions. These seeded ideas will then sprout with the coming full moon just as the seed lie waiting in darkness to break forth into the light to bring fruit, so should you allow the gestation and creation of such idea to bring about physical results.
Set your New Moon Intentions in Motion!
New Moon Magic: Make a fresh start, begin a project, initiate a new relationship, start a new routine.
Create a ritual: Set an intention
Write down your wishes, dreams, and desires.
Light a white/silver candle; imagine the new moving toward you in joyful, powerful ways.
Breath: Spend a few moments breathing in the energy of this new reality each day, making it more and more tangible.
This is a time of new beginnings!
Die to the old to begin again!
Use this energy to discover what has been holding you back.
Plant seeds of manifestation.
Harness the energy of all things of beauty
Work this for one moon cycle and re-access and energize on the next new moon if needed.
The New Moon is a time of new beginnings, hope, faith and optimism. It is an important night energy wise as it sets the pace for the entire lunar cycle. Get a New Moon Spiritual Reading to check in and see how things are going in your life. Find out what energy this New Moon will bring you. Ask your guides what you should be working with this lunar cycle and what you should let go. Readings are available NOW until October 09, 2021. Available Now! Learn More Here.
I also have a Special Halloween Journey Reading which is available NOW. On your journey you will meet a ghost from your past, cleanse something from your life in a bonfire, meet one of your guides, and receive a bag of treats on a gypsy caravan. Click Here To Learn More
New Moon Blessings,
Llewellyn’s Spell A Day
Calling the Witch Ancestors
OCTOBER 03, 2021 BY MICHAEL FURIE
While modern jack-o’-lanterns are made from pumpkins, they were originally made from hollowed out turnips. This spell honors the past and builds strength for the future.
Gather these items:
* 1 turnip
* 1 black candle
* 1 mini pumpkin
* 1 white candle
* Incense (equal parts anise, coriander, and cardamom) and a censer
On a table, place the turnip to the left, with the black candle behind it. Place the pumpkin to the right, with the white candle behind it and the censer (unlit) between the candles. Think of the witches of the past who paved the way for our modern practice. Focus on asking them for guidance and help in advancing your craft. Safely light the black candle, then the white candle and incense, saying:
To build a bond and call
on your power, hidden
company of witches past.
Grant me guidance and
strength this hour, I call those
before, this spell I cast.
For highest good, joyous and
free, as I will, so mote it be!
Snuff out the candles and incense. Use the turnip and pumpkin as decorations to remind you of ancestor magic.
Come Back to Me Spell
OCTOBER 02, 2021 BY JAMES KAMBOS
If you’ve misplaced something, this spell will help you find it. You’ll need a plain sheet of white paper, a pen, and a pink piece of ribbon (or yarn) about three feet long.
Write the name of the lost item on the paper. You may also draw a picture of it. Roll the paper up and tie one end of the ribbon around the paper. Now sit at a table holding the loose end of the ribbon in your hand. The paper should be across the table from you. Ground and center. Softly say three times:
Come back to me.
Pull the paper toward you as you say this. Keep the ribbon attached to the paper, and lay the ribbon and paper on your altar. Don’t think about it again. Later you’ll get a feeling where the item is. You’ll find it.
Attuning to Water
OCTOBER 01, 2021 BY THORN MOONEY
Now that we’re past the autumn equinox, the shortening of the days is palpable. Even if your region doesn’t see snow, the weather is likely cooler and rainier, and you may be noticing that the sun sets earlier, bringing lengthening periods of darkness. In many Western magical traditions, the autumn corresponds to the element of water, which is associated with mystery, depth, intuition, and feeling.
To make the most of the deepening, contemplative season, attune to the element of water. Sit in a cool bath or even a natural body of water, or simply place your hands in a full basin. Allow the water to move around you, filling every curve and crevice. Think about how the water moves and how it changes to reflect whatever contains it. Say:
Powers of water, lend me your gifts
of compassion, intuition, and change.
Be with me this day. So mote it be.
Harvest Squash Bake
SEPTEMBER 30, 2021 BY NAJAH LIGHTFOOT
It’s squash season! Zucchini and yellow squash are overflowing in grocery stores and farmers’ markets. Here is a simple recipe to enjoy the abundance of squash season.
You will need:
* 3 yellow squash
* 3 zucchini
* 1 red bell pepper
* 1 tomato
* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* Seasonings of your choice (I like to use Italian seasoning, celery seed, pepper, and sea salt.)
Heat an oven to 350 degrees F.
While the oven is heating, slice all the vegetables. Place them in a bowl and add the olive oil and the seasonings. Arrange the vegetables in a glass baking dish. Bake for one hour.
For a complete meal, add a green salad and some crusty bread. Enjoy the abundance of the season and give thanks to Mother Earth for beautiful, bountiful squash!
Beans of Success
SEPTEMBER 29, 2021 BY ELIZABETH BARRETTE
National Coffee Day. Take time to celebrate this beverage of the gods. Coffee is an entheogen, opening connections to the divine. You may have heard it personified as the Goddess Caffeina. It expands awareness, quickens thought, and hones focus. It also energizes the body. Coffee enables people to do many things that would be much harder without it. For this reason, it corresponds with success.
For this spell you will need a bag of coffee beans or ground coffee, whichever you prefer. (A plastic pod won’t work, as plastic tends to insulate against magic.) Open the bag and smell the beans. Concentrate on how even the smell of coffee helps you wake up and focus. Then say:
Caffeina, Goddess of Coffee, bless
these beans with the power of
success. When I drink of your brew,
may I become alert and capable.
Visualize the energy in the beans. Then seal the bag and brew a cup whenever you need to boost your success.
SEPTEMBER 28, 2021 BY ESTHA MCNEVIN
Lighting lamps and finding ways to battle back the shadow within us are common themes at this time of year. Ready your home for autumn gatherings by making coconut lanterns. Simply buy one or more coconuts and sit in a sacred space. Think of a prayer for a selfless and positive purpose. As you do so, pierce and drain the coconut using a hammer and a thick nail, drinking the juice to help fill you with the strength and courage to serve others this season.
Use the hammer to carefully split the coconut, then bake it in the oven at 300 degrees F. for one hour or until the meat pulls away from the shell. Grind or grate the fruit to make sweets and snacks or to enjoy over buttered popcorn. Place tealight candles, marigolds, and party charms or candies inside the shells, and leave these on the table or an altar to create a welcoming and warm home for the holiday season ahead.
Pause and Give Thanks
SEPTEMBER 27, 2021 BY DALLAS JENNIFER COBB
Sukkot, the Jewish harvest festival, ends today. The sukkah, an outdoor reed hut, is where families eat, recalling the time when the Israelites wandered the desert for forty years, sleeping and eating under the stars.
Today, take time to get outside for a meal, and pause and give thanks for your harvest. Can you leave work at lunchtime to eat outdoors? Can you enjoy your evening meal on the deck or in the yard?
As you eat, slowly savor the food, being thankful for all that you eat.
Take time to appreciate where you live, work, or are, and give thanks for your home, workplace, and neighborhood.
Widen your awareness to the community, area, or town you are in, and give thanks for the safety, security, and services available to you.
When you finish your meal, pause and give thanks that you are housed, fed, protected, and cared for.
What a harvest!
Heartwings Love Notes 1002 Must Do, Should Do, Nice to Do
Heartwings Says, “Priorities ae helpful for organizing what to do.”
I have a small yet handy program on my computer called “stickies.” It puts up a “piece of paper” resembling a sheet from one of those useful small pads you can write on and then remove to attach somewhere. Of course, with it you are limited to your computer screen, yet you need not ever have to look for something to write with.
I found they are very helpful as reminders of important deadlines in the past, however, a kind friend has given me an even better way to use them, and I thought I would pass it on to my readers. As to the stickies program, if you just google “stickies application” you can get it for free from Microsoft.
What my friend suggested was to code each reminder with one of these three numbers: One is for Must Do; Two is for Should Do; and three is for Nice to do. Setting up my list helps me to focus in a very good way. As I get older and find myself functioning more slowly, prioritizing seems to have become ever so much more important than it has been.
Lately, as a result of my newly acquired condition, I can use all the help I can get. While my mind remains sharp, my fingers and hands grow less able as do my legs and feet. Physical changes mean I have to adjust to being able to do less than I wish I could or would like to be able to. I don’t always know my parameters now, and they also seem to vary from day to day.
Does this sound frustrating? Believe me it is, and it presents me with wonderful new lessons in personal growth on a daily basis. Mindfulness is now something to be practiced any time I am on my feet. It is definitely a “must do.” My exercises to strengthen my legs and achieve better balance are surely a “should do.” As for the “nice to do,” category, it fills up with those little things I intend to accomplish such as sending notes to friends to thank them, or pass along articles I think they might like. I am grateful to my friend for her suggestion, and when she reads this, she’ll know I am.
May you find ways to use helpful applications to make life easier,
Blessings and best regards, Tasha Halpert
Have you found a way to help yourself do better that you can share with me? I’d love to hear it. Your comments and suggestions make my day. Thanks ever so much for communicating. Write me at tashahal@Aol.com, and do visit my web pages at http://www.heartwingsandfriends.com
Spending Time in Nature
Because we instinctively know that nature is good for us on many levels, it’s not unusual to feel powerfully drawn to it.
In this modern age, we spend so much time indoors, focused on the busyness of our lives and disconnected from the earth. But much of what we truly need can only be found under the naked sky, alongside tall trees, on open plains, or in the sound of running water. Spending time in nature allows us to commune with other living beings and to find comfort in the nurturing embrace of Mother Earth. You can’t help but experience a different sense of self while walking in a wood or traversing a mountainside. Being in nature connects us to the earth, grounding us as we walk, unhindered by concrete, upon her. Surrounded by other living beings, both bigger and smaller than we are, we remember that human beings are simply one form of life in this vast universe.
Because we instinctively know that nature is good for us on many levels, it’s not unusual to feel powerfully drawn to it. Even if you live in a city or find it difficult to travel to a forest or the countryside, there are a myriad ways to reconnect with nature. When you step out of your door each morning, pause for a minute and close your eyes long enough to let your senses absorb your surroundings. Listen and breathe deeply, until you hear the wind rustling through branches, smell rain on damp grass, and see the reflection of leaves brushing up against windowpanes. If you have time, crouch down and closely examine any nearby grass and soil. The sights, sounds, smells, and sensations we experience that are part of nature can remind us of all the gifts Mother Earth grants us each day.
Spending time connecting with nature nourishes the soul, reminds you that you are never truly alone, and renews you by attuning you to the earth’s natural rhythms. Taking a walk under the stars or feeling the wind on your face may be all it takes for you to reconnect with nature. Remember, you are as much a part of nature as are the leaves on a tree or water bubbling in a brook.
Mind Over Matter
We can improve our physical well-being by first starting to notice our thoughts and our reactions to them.
The power of the mind is a curious thing, because it is so powerful yet so difficult to control sometimes. We find ourselves thinking a certain way, knowing that this thought may be creating trouble for us yet we find it difficult to stop. For example, many people have the experience of getting sick at the same time every year or every time they go on a plane. They may even be aware that their beliefs impact their experiences, so continue to think they will get sick and then they do.
Sometimes we need to get sick in order to process something or move something through our bodies. But often we get sick, or feel exhausted, because we don’t make the effort to galvanize the power of our minds in the service of our physical health, which is one of its most important functions. We really can use it to communicate to our bodies, yet we often regard the two as separate entities that have little to do with one another.
Knowing this, we have the power to create physical health and mental health, simply by paying attention to the tapes running in our minds. Once we hear ourselves, we have the option to let that tape keep running or to make a new recording. We harness the power of the mind in our defense when we choose supportive, healing words that foster good health and high spirits. All we need to do is remember to tend the field of our mind with the attentive and loving hand of a master gardener tending her flower beds, culling out the weeds so that the blossoms may come to fruition.
Healing from the Trees: Spruce Resin Salve Recipe
Since moving to our new homestead a few years ago, I’ve been working to build a local material medica–that is, learning about all of the medicinal plants, herbs, and trees here on our 5-acre property. This also, of course, means growing a lot of my own herbs but also learning everything I can about the uses of the plants/trees already present on the land. This post is a follow-up to my Spruce post from a little while ago to share some primary ways of working with spruce: A Spruce Resin Salve (also known as a Spruce Gum and Spruce Resin salve) with bonus fire-starters from the process!
Many conifers produce a tarry, sticky resin or sap that has a range of uses: as a binding agent or glue, as a medicine, as gum you can chew, as incense, as a fire-starting tool, as a waterproofing agent, and much more! Gums from many trees, including Norway Spruce, White Pine, and Blue Spruce are highly medicinal and can be turned into a range of herbal preparations. In today’s post, I’ll share a basic process for making a salve from spruce resin; this same process can be used for any other salve made from white pine resin or other medicinal conifer tree gum.
I think that learning how to make medicine from sacred trees is a really important part of developing a wildcrafted druidry or nature-based spiritual practice. Trees are incredible friends, guides, and they have much to offer us–if we take the time to learn, to listen, and to work with them.
Medicinal Properties of Spruce Resin/Pitch/Sap
Norway Spruce is not native to North America…but it, along with Blue Spruce, is planted just about everywhere! It is easy to find in urban and suburban areas, where these tress are also often trimmed, resulting in many opportunities to harvest the dried resin or sticky gum sap.
Norway Spruce Gum (and other spruces such as Black Spruce, Blue Spruce, and White Spruce) have been used for millennia for medicine. The many uses of Norway Spruce include antibacterial, anti-fungal, anti-microbial properties. Spruce gum has been used to treat a host of skin conditions including burns, infections that won’t heal, scrapes, scratches, boils, abscesses, and even more serious issues like gunshot wounds.
The primary tree for this purpose in Europe is Norway Spruce, while in North America, black spruce often was used in this way (their medicinal properties are almost identical). And, as is often the case, science is finally catching up with folk traditional uses as this recent study published in Advanced Wound Care in 2016 demonstrates the powerful antimicrobial and healing properties of Norway Spruce.
Resin – hardened and ready for salve or burning as incense
Many Pine resins are similar in nature and can also be treated in the same way. White Pine, one of the dominant pines in North America, has similar antifungal, antimicrobial, and antibacterial properties (although there is less scientific research on white pine compared to various spruces). Either one will produce a wonderful healing salve.
This salve is more involved than a traditional backyard healing salve but is well worth making. I recently had a very deep and nasty cut (one that should have gotten stitches, in hindsight) and I was able to stop the bleeding with fresh yarrow and then treated the cut successfully with my spruce gum salve. It drew debris from the wound, sealed it up, and kept it from getting infected. Not to mention, it smells amazing, which gave me a bit of aromatherapy while healing the wound!
Thus, your Spruce Resin Salve can be used for any of the following: cuts, scrapes, burns, deep cuts, drawing out debris from wounds, chapped lips (it will work wonders on severely chapped lips) and any number of uses for animal care (such as mild frostbite on combs and wattles of chickens in winter).
Tools and Materials
Whatever you use will forever have spruce resin on it, so I suggest dedicating a few tools to this purpose. I have found that a large tin can works great (I am using a #10 tin can), an old butter knife, and some cheesecloth / thin natural cloth (cotton, linen) and string. For the salve itself, you will also need a good quality olive oil and beeswax.
The can is used for three steps in the process–gathering, filtering, and making the salve. Thus, you will need it to be large enough to boil water and also contain all of your salve. A #10 can is a great size, but I think a slightly smaller one will work as well.
Step 1: Harvesting Your Spruce Pitch and Resin
Various conifer species of trees produce their sticky, gooey sap when the tree is wounded. Thus, you can often find large amounts of it in urban or suburban areas where these trees are frequently pruned. You can also find it naturally occurring in the wild.
As with all wild medicines and foods, you want to practice ethical harvesting practices, which include asking permission from the tree, leaving an offering, and engaging in reciprocation–doing something for the tree or forest where you are harvesting. I believe that if you treat nature respectfully and with agency, your medicine will be all the more potent for it.
Gooey resin dripping from a Norway spruce! This spruce has been regularly pecked by woodpeckers and is producing a ton of sap….I will wait for these crystals to fully harden and use them for incense
Tar, Pitch, and Resin: Tar, Pitch and resin are all the same substance, but they have been outside of the tree for different amounts of time and thus, have different levels of viscosity or dryness. Spruce tar (also known as sap) is a fairly new flow from the tree and is usually clear, very sticky, and drippy–think liquid honey here. Spruce pitch is usually milky and sticky, having partially dried on the tree (and often collected bugs, debris, etc.) which is part of why we have to do some processing to make it into medicine. Spruce pitch is often similar in consistency to crystalized honey. Spruce resin is the hardest of all–you can handle this, it is firm and completely dried. The resin usually represents a few years of drying out on the tree. The difference between them is the age of the substance and how much there is (which affects drying time).
If you are wanting to make a healing salve, it is best to make it with pitch or resin, which is hard enough to collect. Spruce resins are also awesome for incense. The incense from a Norway Spruce is called Burgundy Resin, and it smells and burns amazing–a light and delightful pine scent that will offer powerful energetic clearing. In areas where I harvest, I will usually let sap sit on the tree till it hardens into either pitch (for salve making) or resin (for incense). It takes 2-4 years for the sap to harden into resin which can be handled.
Harvested resin and pitch
When harvesting, take only what is excess from the tree and what will not expose any sensitive areas of the tree. If you see big globs of resin or pitch, remember that the tree uses this to seal over wounds. If you scrape it all from the tree, you are exposing that tree to pests and disease. You can take a little from the outside of the wound, but make sure that the tree remains protected. Sometimes there is so much sap that it drips and hardens–all of this is safe to take as it is not at the site of the wound of the tree. This is a good time to work slowly and listen to the spirit of the tree–the tree can guide you about how much to take and where to take it from. Carless harvesting can lead the tree to harm, which is not a good way to start working with this tree.
Harvesting and preparing spruce or pine pitch is a very sticky business. You will want a dedicated container (I have a dedicated #10 soup can for this purpose) and an old dull knife (a butter knife is fine) to harvest. Scrape the pitch in gobs into the container, using your knife. Small bits of resin can be harvested by hand. Once you have 1/2 cup or more, you can move on to the next step.
Step 2: Filter out Debris and Bugs from your Spruce Tar
As the sap of the Spruce dries, it collects an assortment of debris: bugs, dirt, small bits of bark, etc. In order to make a healing salve, you will need to filter these out before use.
There are several methods for doing this– I’m using a boiling water filtration method that I developed after reading about a number of methods. This method requires the use of cheesecloth, boiling water, and a stone. This method works because any conifer resin is not water-soluble.
Begin by adding all of your spruce resin and pitch to a square of cheesecloth or thinly woven fabric (I’m using a scrap piece of fabric here). Place a small stone in with the resin.
Firmly tie this bundle with some string (don’t use a rubber band–it will sometimes fail in the boiling water). I had two on this bundle and one broke in the boil,, but I was lucky to have a second. I’ve since switched to using simple hemp or cotton cordage, which will not fail!
Put your can on your burner on your stove and then add your bundle to the can. Add enough water to fully cover your bundle by at least 2-3″. The rock will weigh your resin bundle down, making it sink below the water.
Boil 45 minutes to an hour. As you boil it, the pitch will melt and come out of the cheesecloth, either on the surface or bottom of the can. Turn off the heat, remove the remaining bundle (which should be mostly a stone and cheesecloth at this point), and allow the water and resin to fully cool. After it is cool an hour or more later, you can then pour off the water and you will be left with pure resin.
Resin is ready!
The stone can be returned to the land. The cheesecloth, when cut into smaller pieces, makes an outstanding natural firestarter–so hold onto it for your next camping trip!
Step 3: Make your Salve
The basic recipe is 1/4 cup resin, 1/2 cup olive oil, and 1/2 – 1 oz beeswax. Since the resin will still be pretty sticky, you can estimate how much resin you have to work with, and adjust your recipe accordingly (e.g., 1/2 cup of resin = 1 cup of olive oil and 1-11/2 oz beeswax). You can go a bit higher on the olive oil if you want to stretch it, but I would say you want a minimum of 1/4 c resin to 1 cup olive oil.
Return your can to the heat with the resin still in it and add an appropriate amount of olive oil. Heat this up and allow it to simmer for at least 30 minutes, stirring it with a stick. After 30 minutes, add your beeswax (if you shave it or chop it up small, it will melt faster). Once the beeswax is melted and incorporated, pour it into small jars or tins. Let cool completely and you will have an amazing healing salve for use for any deep cuts, surface cuts, and also safe for animals.
If you want, at this stage, use paper towels or cotton rags to clean up any drips and also to wipe out your can. Save these as wonderful fuel for fire-starting–just add a bit of flame and they will burn brightly and help start a fire.
This salve will be good for 1-2 years if stored in a cool, dark place. This has become my favorite healing salve for a wide range of uses, and I always take some with me when I travel!
Dana | October 3, 2021 at 8:30 am | Tags: beeswax, black spruce, blue spruce, burgundy incense, burgundy resin, cuts, gum, healing, healing salve, Norway spruce, olive oil, pine pitch, pine resin, pitch, salve, scrapes, spruce gum salve, spruce healing salve, spruce resin salve, tree healing, white spruce | Categories: Creative Pursuits, Foraging, Forests, Growth, Healing, Herbalism, Medicinal plants, Ovate Knowledge, Recipes, Wildcrafting | URL: https://wp.me/p19QCR-2EG
Gilberto Rides Again by Stephen Halpert Chapter 21
Though he had only been away at the meeting in Greenbush for a few days, stacks of mail greeted Gilberto on his desk. He wondered why the usually prompt mail staff hadn’t cleared away the junk? What did appear significant was the formal lawsuit from Clay Calhoun.
Colonel Dimwittie had pulled out all the stops, accusing Atlas and its Board members of collusion, breach of contract and grand theft. The suit sought restitution of eighty million dollars.
Gilberto called Ramon. “Did you get a surprise from Greenbush?”
Ramon swore. “You mean the legal deposition? Sara has put it in the hands of Atlas’ attorneys. She said she didn’t see much substance to it; called it a nuisance suit and said even if he won, Dimwittie would ultimately settle for considerably less.
He then told Ramon of the athletic derelict with the long knife he had encountered that morning.
“Be careful,” Ramon said. “Maybe there’s something rotten going on at Atlas we know nothing about.”
“My thoughts exactly,” Gilberto replied.” Any ideas?”
“Not really, but I’m checking around.” Then his voice lifted. “Happy to tell you I’ve gotten my new up graded device. I’ll give you my old cell phone to give to Mona. I cleaned it, removed Atlas data, even added a number of apps designed for kids.”
“Thanks,” Gilberto smiled. “That’s very kind of you. She’ll be thrilled. Maybe she’ll even lose interest in ants and white rats and instead start texting with her friends.”
“Let’s hope,” Ramon chuckled. “At that age all my daughters ever wanted were Shetland ponies.”
Next, Gilberto phoned Smith and reported that morning’s incident of the murderous derelict.
“Something might start to boil.” Smith’s sounded vague. “Won’t hurt for Rain to keep an eye on you.”
Gilberto nodded. He sensed something cautious about Smith’s response. “Do you suppose our lines at Atlas might be tapped?”
“I wouldn’t be surprised,” Smith said dryly. “I noticed Atlas stock continues to climb. Could be a stock split down the road.”
Gilberto mentioned the Clay Calhoun suit being perpetrated by Colonel Dimwittie.”
“Possible implications. Very curious.” Smith’s words grew increasingly terse.
“You think Dimwittie’s suit will affect the stock value?”
“I’ll check in with the appropriate personnel and get back to you on that.” Smith hung up and his phone signaled another call.
It was Ramon. “Sara wants you to join us for lunch. She wants us to confer outside the office. The walls have ears.”
He sounded tense. “Seems so,” Gilberto said. More proof his line could be tapped. No wonder Smith spoke the way he had.
“Meet us outside by the parking entrance at one,” Ramon said.
“Will do,” Gilberto said. He signed off and spent the remainder of the morning going through his mail, throwing away most of it.
He met them outside by the parking garage at one. Sara appeared o have forgotten to look in the mirror that morning. Her usually impeccable style had been replaced by a decidedly unkempt look.
She frowned at Gilberto. “Sorry about your junk mail. I’m having everything delivered just to be sure nothing slips through the cracks.”
Without further conversation, Sara drove to the open-air market downtown at Faneuil Hall. Gilberto felt on edge. He wasn’t sure if it was Sara’s jerky driving or Smiths indication that trouble was brewing. For the first time in years, he craved a cigarette– which he realized was totally out of character and ridiculous.
He looked at Sara. “How long since you had a cigarette?”
“Is it that obvious? Since this business with Buzz, I feel flung back into old habits.”
The waiter came to their table. They ordered corn beef Rubens and coffee. With a gleam in his eye, Ramon ordered a slice of chocolate torte drenched in a thick liquor flavored icing.
They consumed their meal without much being said of any consequence. Finally, Gilberto’s curiosity got the best of him. “Sara, why don’t you tell us what’s bothering you,” he said. “Is it Buzz, Dimwittie’s lawsuit, or something else?”
She looked at him blankly. Whatever was on her mind wasn’t going to be shared.
Ramon finished his torte. He grinned at Gilberto. “Rosa doesn’t need to know about this. These days she’s taking my health way too seriously.”
“Are you gaining weight?” Gilberto asked.
Ramon waved his hand dismissively. “Two or three pounds, nothing to be concerned about. That food in Greenbush no doubt.”
“You’re fine,” Sara said. She gazed at his broad shoulders and sighed. Her expression reminded Gilberto of a feral cougar about to spring upon and devour a lamb.
They spent the next half hour talking about day-to-day inconsequential. Gilberto couldn’t help wondering why Sara had wanted this meeting,
Finally. she said, ” I want you to know, as soon as Buzz recovers, I’m taking a leave of absence. My nerves are shot. I need to get away.”
Gilberto nodded. “I understand,” he said.
She paid the check. They headed for the car and began driving along Memorial Drive back to Atlas. Early afternoon traffic was light.
Gilberto feared the way she drove would result in costly brake realignment. Why was she driving like this? Her eyes were fixed on her rearview mirror. Beside her, Ramon sat, eyes were closed, snoring lightly. Gilberto noticed a dark panel truck creeping up behind them.
The truck drew up beside them and tried to edge the Jag off the shoulder. “Be careful Sara,” he said
Sara accelerated; the Jag lurched forward. The panel truck tried to catch up, but it was now too far behind. Sara took the Gloucester Street exit and turned smartly onto Commonwealth Avenue toward Berkeley Street. She pulled into the Atlas entrance.
“That was close,” Gilberto said. “I’ll never question your driving ever again.”
“I spotted that truck birddogging us earlier. I drove slower so he’d feel he had an advantage.”
“Any idea what’s going on?” Gilberto asked
“I’ve seen that panel truck before. Parked near my condo. I think the driver is someone who wants to murder me.”
(To be continued)
Kitty Kats Korner
Can Cats Eat Daisies?
Dr. Lauren Cline, DVM, of Queen City Animal Hospital sounds off on the most dangerous plants for cats.
Left to their own devices, most cats will gladly explore things they shouldn’t. Whether that’s scraps from the dinner table or the flowers you brought home from the farmer’s market, it’s important to monitor your cat to make sure their curiosity isn’t getting the best of them and causing serious medical problems. This is especially true if your cat spends time both indoors and outdoors and might find themselves in close proximity to plants that look like a tempting snack.
How Do You Know Which Plants Are Safe for Your Cat?
Dr. Lauren Cline, DVM, of Queen City Animal Hospital says that any plant has the potential to trigger some gastrointestinal issues, like vomiting or diarrhea, if your cat ingests it. With that said, Dr. Cline notes that some plants are more toxic than others and should be avoided due to the risk of organ failure or other serious illness.
Not sure how to tell if the plants in your home or in your backyard pose a risk for your four-legged friends?
“I recommend that all owners be aware of what plants they have in the home and in their yard and look each one up on the ASPCA list of toxic plants. This comprehensive list will detail toxic principles and clinical signs to monitor for, as well as let you know if emergency treatment needs to be sought in the event of exposure or ingestion,” Dr. Cline says.
Though they’re beautiful, cat owners should steer clear of lilies, Dr. Cline says.
“Both true lilies- Lilium sp. and Hemerocallis sp., can cause acute and fatal renal failure in cats,” she says. “Even licking the pollen off these plants can be detrimental, so I recommend avoiding having them in the home completely if you own a cat. These include Asiatic lilies, East lilies, daylilies, peace lilies, and Lily of the Valley.”
Sago palms can also pose a risk to both cats and dogs, Dr. Cline says. If ingested, these plants can cause serious gastrointestinal issues, followed by seizures and liver failure. Other plants that pet owners should consider avoiding include oleander, azaleas, foxglove, and lantana.
While the kinds of plants you’ve got growing in your yard will probably vary depending on where you live and your own personal preferences, many of us will find that we’ve got daisies in our yards. Can cats eat daisies without serious health issues?
Daisies aren’t as toxic to cats as some of the plants listed above, Dr. Cline says, but these flowers can still trigger gastrointestinal issues, like vomiting, diarrhea, and hypersalivation. This applies to dogs, too. For this reason, it’s best to encourage all pets to avoid eating daisies whenever possible.
What Should You Do if Your Pet Ingests a Poisonous Plant?
If your pet has ingested a toxic plant, Dr. Cline recommends immediately calling the ASPCA Poison Control Helpline at 888-426-4435. The team will do a consultation with you to determine the most appropriate next steps, including if you need to take your pet to a local animal hospital.
What Can You Do To Prevent Your Pet from Ingesting Toxic Plants?
First and foremost, be aware of what’s growing in your yard. Secondly, Dr. Cline advises always keeping a close eye on your pets when they’re outside. Whenever possible, keep any toxic plants away from your home’s interior and exterior.
If you’ve got plants that may cause a problem for your pets, consider installing fencing or an enclosure to prevent your animals from having access to these plants. While the various greenery and flowers you’ve got both inside and outside your home may look tempting to your pets, it’s important to prevent them from eating something that could trigger serious health issues.
Georgia’s Weekly Horoscope
Sunday, October 03, 2021
This week the Sun, Mercury and Mars take turns lining up with each other in Libra. Meanwhile, the only New Moon in Libra all year is also taking place. This concentrated focus will affect everyone depending on where it takes place in their chart. (Note: Every month, the New Moon is our chance to make resolutions. I think the New Moon is more authentic than Jan. 1, which is a date chosen by advisors to the Pope in 1582. In fact, at the time, Protestants rioted because they thought it was a Catholic plot.) This week, the New Moon occurs early Wed. morning (7 AM Eastern; 4 AM Pacific). Therefore, Tues. is the perfect time to make resolutions! Personally, I’m going to resolve to get up before noon on weekdays. (Weekends are mine to sleep in.)
Aries (March 21-April 19)
All this heavy activity going on in the sign of Libra this week is opposite your sign. The opposition to the Sun will help you to more objectively see how you relate to those who are closest to you. Mercury retrograde will attract old friends from the past and ex-partners. Mars opposite your sign can make you easily annoyed with others. (Cranky. Grumpy. Quick to take offense.) Fortunately, the New Moon taking place opposite your sign (the only one all year) is your chance to think about how you can improve your relations with those who are closest to you. What can you do? Ideas?
Taurus (April 20-May 20)
This week, the activity taking place in Libra (the Sun, Mercury retrograde, Mars and the New Moon) will light a fire under you. You’re pumped! You’ll be determined to work hard and get better organized. You’ll want results for your efforts, and you’ll be so keen to accomplish as much as possible, you’ll be busy delegating to others as well. (You might be a tad bossy.) This is a winning, beneficial influence for you because not only will you accomplish a lot, you will do something to improve your health as well. Meanwhile, this New Moon is your chance to ponder how you can work smarter and be better organized? Dank! (That trendy vote of approval.)
Gemini (May 21-June 20)
This spate of activity in the sign of Libra is great for you because Libra is your fellow Air sign. (Whatever happens in Libra will support you – like the third leg on a three-legged stool.) That’s why this week is full of opportunities to have fun! Explore social outings, parties, luncheons, playful activities with kids, sports events and the ways you like to socialize with others. It’s an excellent week to enjoy a vacation. If you can’t slip away on a vacation, why not introduce a vacation feeling to your daily routine? Take a long lunch, meet friends for happy hour (in person or by Zoom). Have fun! You want the freedom to do your own thing. Romance will also get a major boost!
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
Home and family matter to you, which is why you will welcome this week’s concentrated planetary activity, which highlights home and family. “Elemental, my dear Watson.” You might be more involved with a parent. Younger family members, especially relatives you haven’t seen for a while, might be back in the picture. You have lots of energy for improvements, renovations and repairs. (Some of them major.) Meanwhile, this New Moon is your best chance all year to take a few minutes and think about how to improve your relations with family, as well as how to better enjoy your home. Your home is your cozy nest and refuge from the world!
Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)
This is a fast-paced, busy week full of errands, appointments, increased reading and writing as well as taking short trips. Yay! This will keep you hopping! In particular, you’ll be keen to talk to others because you want to enlighten them about something. Some of these people you’re keen to talk to might be people from your past. (It’s fun trading lies about how well your life is going. Although, some prefer a competition about who has it the worst.) Admittedly, Mercury retrograde will create transportation glitches, car problems, missed appointments, confused communications and misplaced paperwork. “I know I put it right here?”
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
Money, money, money! A gaggle of planets is sitting in your Money House. This means you’ll be more involved than usual earning money, thinking of ways to earn more money, trying to get a better paying job, trying to get any job, trying to make money on the side or figuring out how to swing things with what you’ve got. However, Mercury retrograde will also delay money coming to you. Cheques in the mail will be late. Meanwhile, Mars will push you to work hard to earn money, but it will also encourage you to spend big. This week, the New Moon is your best chance all year to think about you handle what you own. For starters: Do you own your stuff, or does it own you?
Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
This unusual planetary activity (see All Signs) is taking place in your sign! The Sun will continue to be in Libra until Friday, Oct. 22, which is a blessing that comes only once a year. It attracts people and favourable circumstances to you; plus, it boosts your energy! Meanwhile, fiery Mars is also in your sign, which also amplifies your energy. This lovely combo can happen only once every two years, so make the most of it. Get out of bed, get dressed and get busy because you will get a lot done! Physical exercise will appeal. You also will feel the need to express your ideas to someone, perhaps an ex-partner. (Oh yeah.)
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
This concentration of planets mentioned in All Signs above is taking place in a hidden part of your chart, which does not mean that you won’t feel the effects of it. It simply means that whatever occurs will not be obvious to others. You will experience these influences, but they will impact you in a private way – very much to do with your inner world. Frankly, this suits you because by nature, you’re a secretive person. Mercury retrograde will help you do research. However, this placement of Mars can stir up “hidden enemies”. Therefore, if you’re in a situation where you suspect something fishy is going on – it is! Trust your gut instincts. Meanwhile, you can attract money to you this week. Ka-ching!
Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
This gaggle of planets mentioned in All Signs above will energize your interaction with friends as well as your involvement with clubs, groups and organizations. You’re busy and you’re popular! You might also be in competition with someone; in fact, physical activity with others will appeal to you. Meanwhile, you’ll be in contact with someone from your past whom you haven’t seen for a while. Because fair Venus is in your sign, you’ll be charming and diplomatic. People are happy to see you! It would be wise for you to share your goals for the future with them because their feedback might make a difference.
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
This is a powerful time because the Sun at the top of your chart casts you in a flattering light (symbolically), which means bosses and parents are impressed with you. This gives you an excellent advantage if you need to make your pitch or advance your agenda. Therefore, act now! (Mars at the top of your chart will give you the courage to do so because it arouses your ambition.) Because Mercury retrograde is also at the top of your chart, you will hear from parents and old bosses from your past, plus, have the chance to rethink your life path. You might make some changes. Secret love affairs are on the books for some. (Don’t blow something solid for a mere bonbon.)
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
This is an exciting week for you! This handful of planets mentioned in All Signs above is urging you to learn new things by talking to people from different backgrounds or studying formally or through your own self education. This influence will also urge you to travel because it wants you to break the sides of the envelope. Think Buzz Lightyear. “To infinity and beyond!” You can use the influence of Mercury retrograde to finish a paper, a manuscript or any important study you are doing. It will also help you study history or study the past. Mars, of course, will get you in trouble with controversial subjects. Remember your motto: The greatest good for the greatest number.
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
This is a passionate time for you! Not only will you feel passionate about sex, you will feel passionate about almost all aspects of your life. One outcome of this concentration of planets is that you might be in dispute with someone about shared responsibilities or shared wealth. On the upside, Mercury retrograde will help you to wrap up loose ends with estates, inheritances, taxes, debt and anything that you own jointly with others. This is very handy because it will make cleaning up areas that you might’ve been avoiding much easier! Meanwhile, travel for pleasure will totally appeal. You will enjoy seeing new places, meeting new faces and being exposed to new cultures. “Bonjour!
Weekly Horoscopes Beginning Sunday, 03 October 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; consist of every possible detail of everyday and are 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:
Epigram: Things are unlikely to make sense until the pivotal Aries Full Moon on 20 October. Once you understand that, you’ll be uncharacteristically easy-going about the range of bizarre changes altering the world around you and, even more, elements of your life. Doing nothing may seem odd. Still, you’ll soon realise that swift changes mean even simple plans should be regarded as an experiment, more than anything else.
Share any ideas you have that you think will work. It doesn’t matter whether this concern your home and family affairs, or your career. If you believe in them, they deserve a chance. Your family, friends and colleagues will think this too. Make sure you arrange it so you have some time on your own or you could end up devoting every spare minute to helping others. You don’t want to end up with no time left to give to personal plans.
History has been known to repeat. Think back to 2006, 1989 and 1974. Obviously much depends on how old you are, but these are the last three occasions when the Sun and Mars aligned in your opposite sign. That they do so this week just after the New Moon (also in Libra), as Pluto arrives at its station, and as Venus moves into Sagittarius, suggests this will be a week with a difference. Libra is the sign of relationships. Aries people need to be free: but to show just how free and independent you are, you need to have something to be free from. Anticipate a struggle. Your career is most definitely going places but you likely need to align with new groups and associations. That much should be clear by next Friday. Note however that Mercury is still retrograde, – also in Libra, – and that you would do well to listen before you give opinion.
Personal theme: I have!!
Earth & fixed sign: April 20 — May 20
Your horoscope for this week:
Epigram: As you’ll undoubtedly have noticed, even seemingly simple arrangements are shifting, frequently and often dramatically. The trick? It’s to explore your options, then get involved in what seems worthwhile. However, on Thursday the 7th your ruler Venus moves to accent broadening your horizons, including developments that encourage you to focus on exploration. What you learn won’t just be interesting, it could change your life.
You have plenty of energy and enthusiasm is in abundance. There is an aura of confidence and power about you. Everyday jobs will be handled with ease. Even new tasks will present little in the way of challenge as you instinctively know how best to handle these matters. Make the most of and all opportunities to develop your creative talents. Your belief in yourself is high and this is all down to you enjoying a more active social life.
Think back to 2006, 1989 and 1974. (Those years may or may not encompass your working life). Fact is that those are the last three occasions when the Sun and Mars aligned in Libra (another of the signs ruled by Venus) and, in your case, accented working conditions. The cosmos doesn’t do exact repeats, but themes echo. There is high probability of a new working relationship being forged. This could get off to a bumpy start as Mercury is retrograde (also in Libra). If there is good news, it’s that Wednesday’s Libra New Moon coincides with Venus (your ruling planet) moving into Sagittarius as Pluto arrives at its station. It’s possible that someone who’s lived and worked abroad or who has excellent qualifications will move in on your scene. Developing a working partnership with them will likely take time. Give it that as by next month’s lunar eclipse, this relationship could make all the difference to your working life.
Personal theme: I think!!
Air sign: May 21 — June 20
Your horoscope for this week:
Epigram: If you’re into astrology, you’ll not only be aware that your ruler Mercury is retrograde until the 18th, triggering confusion for you and others. However, you’re better off laughing about errors now, and seeking a solution later. The challenge? Ensuring everybody else feels as easy-going. The strategy? Employ your remarkable sense of humour. Then, later in the month, you’ll tackle any remaining confusion together.
You’re growing bored with a project you took on some time ago. You might wish you could press the fast-forward button and move on to the next job, even so it’s important to finish what you start. Try not to get cross with delays. Other people have got their own work to do. A relative is being awkward about a household matter. It would be better for you if they made decisions more quickly but this isn’t their style.
In 2006, 1989 and 1974, the Sun aligned with Mars in the creative zone of your solar chart. This alignment occurs again just after Wednesday’s Libra New Moon. By then, Pluto will have arrived at its station, and Venus moved into your opposite sign. You certainly won’t be the only sign negotiating new working relationships! In your case however you could be super excited. You might also be asked to mentor someone younger. The stage should be set over this weekend and the early part of next week when someone who’s been in position declares that they can no longer observe a schedule that’s been in place since June. They may now be thinking of more creative ways of you working together. Listen carefully. Mercury is retrograde. Nothing needs to be set in stone this week, but a trial period could begin. Note too, that by next Monday, Saturn will be stationing in another of the Air signs. Your expertise could be put to the test. Use your time wisely and revise.
Personal theme: I feel!!
Water & cardinal sign: June 21 — July 22
Your horoscope for this week:
Epigram: It’s a tricky period for everybody. However, if you’re already feeling vulnerable, you could easily turn minor issues into something more serious and even be over-sensitive. Recognising this tendency and refusing to be drawn into those feelings won’t be easy. However, if you can, you’ll also find you’ll comfortably discuss offers and new ideas that, otherwise, you might have ignored, if not bypassed entirely.
Your boss will ask for your views on potential new projects. Not only will they like your suggestions but they will want to experiment with a few ideas there and then. This makes it as good a time as any to press for some career changes you would like to make. Family relationships will be harmonious but try to avoid a tendency to become moody when things on the social scene don’t go your way.
Were 2006, 1989 and 1974 important years for you? They have in common a Sun- Mars conjunction in Libra (another of the Cardinal signs). There is another of these alignments due just after Wednesday’s New Moon in that same sign. There are never exact repeats, but it’s highly likely that if those earlier years were turning points, then 2021 will be similarly so. Career wise you may now be headed in slightly altered direction. That’s likely in part due to the fact that Mercury is retrograde. You may be asked to tackle a task for which you feel you are ill-prepared. Be kind to yourself. The fact that you’ve been asked to do this is, in a sense, a compliment. Yes, you might need to negotiate a trial period, but that you can do. Note that this week Pluto arrives at its station in your opposite sign. This has been an annual recurrence since 2008. It suggests a ‘full stop moment’ when you pause, and take deep breath before moving on. Give yourself that time; but yes, it is quite likely that those born under either Libra or Capricorn will have key roles to play as you take your next career step.
Personal theme: I will!!
Fire & fixed sign: July 23 — August 22
Your horoscope for this week:
Epigram: As you begin the week, it will seem you’re facing a range of trade-offs. That is, events, offers or others’ support will come at a price, one you question paying. At least explore these. While not everything will work, even what doesn’t will introduce you to new ideas, people or even settings, all of which will add to your world. Final plans? Wait until late October.
You’re facing some ups and downs financially. If you’re struggling to balance accounts, a financial advisor will help you get your affairs in order. In areas where you are working as part of a team, you will shine. You have skills and talents that others admire and your hard-working approach is making a good impression. If a private matter needs to be resolved it would be better to use your head instead of your feelings to reach a decision.
Think back to 2006, 1989 and before that, 1974. Those are the last three occasions when the Sun aligned exactly with Mars in Libra. That aspect occurs again this week just after Wednesday’s New Moon. These lunations tend to bring a willingness to embrace the new and so offer a fresh start. This conjunction boosts possibility of engaging with someone ‘new on the block’. This could be a colleague who is on temporary secondment, or it could be a neighbour’s guest. Either way, your window on the world is set to open a little wider. There’s high probability of increased local travel and of urgent communications. Recall though that Mercury is still retrograde and that things might not run smoothly until mid-month. The potential for you to increase your vocabulary: including learning another language, is much increased. It wouldn’t be so surprising as Venus moves into another of the Fire signs, if you determined on a short evening course that satisfied your mind and expanded your social scene.
Personal theme: I analyse!!
Earth sign: August 23 — September 22
Your horoscope for this week:
Epigram: Annoying as the unexpected twists you’re facing seem, it’s increasingly clear you’re learning something from each. Being an inquisitive Virgo, you may already know why. You, and the rest of the world, are contending with the confusion triggered by your ruler Mercury’s retrograde cycle. While it’s slowed progress, it’s also led to discussions about both practicalities and objectives, yours and others, that are of increasing value.
Getting involved in a community project is a chance to bring your talents to the fore. You might take on an exciting challenge to do with a charity or fund-raising project. An investment idea is worth looking into. This could seem like one of the best decisions you’ve made in a long while, giving you a feeling that you are finally on top of your money situation. You will welcome any chance you get to make a little money out of a hobby.
Get set for an extremely busy week. Soon after Wednesday’s New Moon (which coincides with Pluto arriving at its station and Venus beginning annual passage over the base of your solar chart), the Sun and Mars align in neighbouring Libra for the first time since 2006. Mars, the red planet, is known as an energizer. That this alignment comes so soon after a New Moon and with Venus changing signs, suggests fuel going into your tank. True, as your ruling planet, Mercury, is still retrograde, it might take some time for the tank to be filled. The process though starts this week. It might, in fact, be driven by discussions taking place over Sunday and Monday that make it abundantly clear that there are certain individuals who’ve held you back for too long. Though your sign has a reputation as being excellent for risk assessment, no one should be in any doubt that doesn’t mean you are oblivious to opportunity.
Personal theme: I balance!!
Air & cardinal sign: September 23 — October 22
Your horoscope for this week:
Epigram: The secret to dealing with October’s twists and turns? It’s to recognise this as a period of change and, because of that, to acknowledge even simple plans won’t last long. That being the case, forget about getting things just right. Instead, make tentative arrangements. You might even decide to be adventurous. At minimum, you’ll learn something. Actually, those insights won’t just be informative, they could be life-changing.
Take advantage of some positive communication trends to win over a friend or partner who has been dithering over joint plans. It will feel good to finally agree on what must be done and to conclude this agreement. You should have plenty to celebrate when a promotion or increase in salary will mean you can make some beneficial changes to your domestic scene. Family life will be relaxed and harmonious in the weekend.
For the first time since 2006, (and before that in 1989 and in 1974), the Sun and Mars align in your sign. The fact that they do so just a couple of days after Wednesday’s Libra New Moon, suggests you will be primed to push the boat out. Remember, Mars is the energising planet. Relationship -wise it seems you’re ready to move forward – but in altered direction. Note that Mercury is still retrograde in your sign. Full progress might not be made until mid-month. That said, with Pluto arriving at its direct station, and Venus, your ruling planet, moving into Sagittarius mid-week, the potential for you to make contacts and/or to reach out to those you’ve done business with in the past, but who are now some distance away, is much, much increased. Making arrangements and plans for 2022 should be high on your agenda. The important thing is to realise that you are at the helm.
Scorpio & Ophiuchus
Personal theme: I desire!!
Water & fixed signs: October 23 — November 21
Your horoscope for this week:
Epigram: You always try to spot and deal with obstacles, whatever their nature, from tricky individuals to complicated circumstances swiftly. Now, however, it’s about recognising that often the most complicated of difficulties is actually a gift, in the form of an opportunity to delve into, and learn about, certain persistent difficulties. You’ve been wishing these would vanish. The secret? It’s to explore them in depth.
You can put the final touches to a difficult and demanding project. Praise will come our way for a job well done. A senior colleague who has hardly noticed you is starting to realise how good you are at your job. An unexpected invitation from a distance could be the opportunity you have been waiting for to expand your social horizons. Mutual money prospects prosper later on when a partner’s good fortune will rub off on you.
Yours is one of the Water signs: suggesting a fertile imagination that sometimes goes into overdrive. It might help to think back to 2006, 1989 and 1974. Those with the years when the Sun last conjoined with Mars in your neighbouring sign, Libra. There are never exact repeats but it’s worthwhile considering the enterprises you were involved in then and how you reacted. View this as being the beginning of a long cycle. That this conjunction comes within hours of Venus moving into neighbouring Sagittarius, and as Pluto, one of your ruling planets, arrives at its direct station, suggests you could yet open up a useful second revenue stream. Certainly, it seems likely that your input at meetings focused on design and development will be much appreciated. It might also be that before the end of this week, and boosted by the arrival of a colleague who is similarly talented, that you will be asked to join forces and prepare for a presentation next week.
Personal theme: I see!!
Fire sign: November 22 — December 21
Your horoscope for this week:
Epigram: As a quick-thinking and fast-moving Sagittarius, you dislike wasting time on debate. You prefer to make plans or commitments, then learn from experience. However, with the foundation on which October’s plans are based shifting, frequently and often dramatically, you’re left juggling a range of options. The solution? Relax and actually enjoy the fact you’ve time to explore options and meet people. Lasting plans? Not for now.
You could reach an important turning point in your financial affairs. Family life is changing slightly and this will call for a thoughtful decision concerning the domestic budget. Because this is something you aren’t rushing into, you will know you are making the right choice. Your job or new social commitments may involve entertaining clients or officials from time to time and this gives you a great excuse to splash out on some new clothes and spruce up your wardrobe.
It’s worth thinking back to 2006, and prior to that 1989, and before that, 1974! In those years, the Sun and Mars aligned in Libra. Though not your sign, there is still impact. This conjunction takes place again just after Wednesday’s Libra New Moon and will likely usher in a new phase as regards your position within a group or association. True, progress might not be made until Mercury is no longer retrograde midmonth. It should however, be clear that your status is somewhat altered. Bear in mind that this New Moon coincides with Pluto’s direct station and Venus’ entry into your sign. It would be understandable if all eyes were on you and on your considerable expertise. Expect to be asked for your opinion but anticipate too, that it could be at least a week before others take the action which you know will be necessary. In short, the cosmos may be setting you a test in patience (again!) whilst at the same time putting rocket fuel in your tank.
Personal theme: I use!!
Earth & cardinal sign: December 22 — January 19
Your horoscope for this week:
Epigram: You’re superb at keeping up with the facts. Not only do you know what’s what, others seek your guidance; but now, with each day bringing changes, even you are confused. Yet you’ve spotted trends, those both explain the current chaos and better yet, suggest when, and how, breakthroughs are coming. Until then? Declutter your life and thinking. This prepares you for what’s next.
People will praise you for your recent hard-working efforts. Where you might get a little dispirited is when a newcomer in the workplace starts to take the limelight. Don’t let your feelings show. You both have the abilities or knowledge needed for a job you are taking on jointly so be willing to combine forces and enjoy the shared rewards. A friend or neighbour will give you a favourable answer to a request you make in the weekend.
It would be understandable if you felt that you are waiting for others to make their move. They may not do that until after Wednesday’s Libra New Moon. This is no ordinary lunation: it coincides with Pluto (presently passing through your sign), arriving at its direct station. Your need to see things happen will likely be very strong indeed; but there’s more: within hours, the Sun conjoins with Mars – also in the career sector of your solar chart. It last did that in 2006, and before that in 1989, and prior to that 1974. If those were meaningful years, then anticipate that 2021 will be similarly so. That said, the cosmos never does exact repeats. What’s important this time – and especially since Mercury is retrograde in this same area, – is that you give others time to accept an evolving situation and to unravel an administrative muddle. If only they’d listened to you earlier.
Personal theme: I know!!
Air & fixed sign: January 20 — February 18
Your horoscope for this week:
Epigram: Once you understand you’re in an unsettled period, instead of gathering facts with the aim of making wise decisions, you’ll back off, relax and see what happens. This uncharacteristically easy-going approach both allows you to take a well-earned break and, equally, review your recent activities and future plans. You’ll be surprised how many you’re ready, if not eager, to change. Still, take it easy. There’s no rush.
You can be very convincing when you turn on the charm and whatever you ask of others, it will be hard for them to turn you down. Embrace a new opportunity with confidence and your enthusiasm will inspire your family and friends to join you in this venture. Expect to feel compassionate towards those in need. A fund-raising event will be a huge success. A relative will be depending on you for some practical advice as the week ends.
It’s worth thinking back to 2006, 1989 and prior to that 1974. These were the last three occasions when the Sun and Mars aligned in another of the Air signs, Libra. That conjunction occurs again later this week – just after Wednesday’s Libra New Moon. It’s likely that in those previous years, your thirst for knowledge was much increased. It might also be that your social world expanded and/or that you became involved with groups who shared your outlook. A similar trend applies this week. The cosmos never does exact repeats and, in this case, Mercury is retrograde until midmonth. It might be useful to use these next two weeks to assess the availability of courses and to make tentative introductions. There is no need to rush. What you’re doing is building support. Given that Saturn is slowly coming to its station in your sign, decisions taken now will likely be extra important, carrying weight for the next three decades.
Personal theme: I believe!!
Water sign: February 19 — March 20
Your horoscope for this week:
Epigram: Usually you sense who’d truly benefit from your support, versus those who complain just to see what happens. Now, however, it’s you who needs to seek support. While in some cases others will have noted the situation and suggested options, in a few you’ve been suffering in silence. Don’t. Not only are certain individuals able to help, they’re eager to do all they can.
Your bubbling enthusiasm for life will lead naturally to an energetic social scene. The week will not lack moments of pleasure and leisure not to mention some wonderfully romantic evenings. A friend who always has an eye for a bargain will put you on to the whereabouts of a great travel offer. Even if you had no such plans, don’t look a gift horse in the mouth. The domestic scene will be generally harmonious though your social life will be hectic at times.
Wednesday’s Libra New Moon is followed by Venus’ arrival at the apex of your solar chart. This suggests you might ‘fall in love’ with a project. Certainly, the wind should be behind your sails career wise. This lunation is followed by a Sun- Mars conjunction in that same sign. These conjunctions don’t happen every year: the last was in 2006, prior to that in 1989, and prior to that in 1974. It may be that your financial direction was altered in those years. The cosmos doesn’t do exact repeats, but what you learn mid-week could alter your attitude substantially. This New Moon coincides with Pluto arriving at its station. It may be that there is a tax or other government inspired incentive that should taken up. With others commenting on the fact that you’ve yet to realise your full potential, it likely won’t take much to persuade you to revive an old interest or talent either.
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