Friday, December 31, 2010


Wishing all of you a: 

VERY Happy, Healthy,

Creative, Calm,
Loving and Prosperous
 New Year!!!

Remember to try and:
NOT repeat mistakes made in 2010
Forgive those that need it
give second chances
tell people HOW YOU FEEL ABOUT THEM, life is short
try and do something good every day
tell yourself something good about yourself or that happened to you, every day
Remember there are others worse off than you
give when you can...time, money or food
Be good to our Planet, it is the only one we have
Count your blessings and any gifts that were bestowed upon you (talents etc)
Share your gifts

TEA swap with Sara (Seaside Diaries of a Kimberline) I have been remiss

I have been very remiss in posting about this fabulous exchange and I am soo sorry for excuses!

My Partner was Mother Moon (Janie) I was just bowled over by my lovely gift!!

without further adieu, here is what I rec'd.
 Isn't that Vera Bradley mug gorgeous?!!  I have not christened it yet. I did try a cup of the tea on YULE with one of the Honey sticks, I am going to have to try it again with either 2 honey sticks or other sweetener, it is a bit tart (citrus-y) for my tastes, but I LOVE the tin!  The Card is also so pretty, I will find a way to recycle it, as I do with all my holiday cards.
THANK YOU so much Mother Moon!! I hope you enjoyed what I sent :)

and a HUGE thanks to Sara for hostessing such a fabulous exchange!!

the post here, tells about the partners, and when the participants rec'd their goodies!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

A card (or more) for Operation Write home (it's been a while)

This card is for the mid-week throw down challenge...MISSING YOU, KIDS CARD

Pre-made card base by DCWV, misc. printed paper, misc ribbon, pearl brad, prima flowers
Images colored with BIC Mark Its!, both the teddy and the sentiment are raised up on foam pieces.
Teddy digi stamp (unknown) Sentiment by Meljen designs

This next card is for "Designed to Delight's" weekly challenge. The image is theirs.(card is for OWH)

White card base, printed paper, & the sentiment by STAMPIN' UP, Inks, markers and pearls also by STAMPIN' UP.  I traced a heart on white CS and then used ink direct to paper. (Melon Mambo) Matching the paper, scarf, sentiment etc.
The Image/sentiment are elevated.

This next card is also for OWH, it is their last challenge for 2010, to make a card with either 10 items, or 20 items on it.
I was able to pull off 20 :D
"Show me the Candy"
1...Card* (if this doesn't count, then count the individual gems on the ribbon)
2...Yellow layer
3...Green layer
4...Sentiment (by MM Designs)
6...mat board Buckle
7 thru and including 15... mini Buttons
16...Image (by Stamp Doodle Pantry)
17...strip of Green Gems on ribbon*(this is either 1 item or 19, if #1 doesn't count---then my OWH stamp on the back and my signature would be 20)
18 thru and including 20... lg. Pink Flower, md. Pink flower, Green button

That is my last piece of ART for 2010 (except for a small handful of ATCs, which are available for trade) January 1 starts a new file folder on my desktop :)

12 days of YULE with Lady Cattra, day 10

Today for my day 10, I am posting some questions for those in the know, for those well on their paths. I am still reading...and thus far i am finding that Wicca seems to be a LOT or work, yet most people that practice the craft do not seem to be involved with that much work. So I have some questions.

If you care to answer privately email me.  But I am ok with answers here, and after my anniversary, there will be separate pages for items on my blog.

Question #1:  Do I have to be Wiccan, to practice the craft?

Question #2: MUST I take a ritual bath before every ritual? (disabled, getting down into, and up out of a tub is difficult for me, I do this extremely rarely...though I used to love a good soak)

Question #3: MUST I study astrology to the point that I can do full charting?

Question #4: MUST I take up a musical instrument and lessons?($ is an issue)

Question #5: Do I really need to dance at least once a week?(disabled)

Question #6: Must I really sit on the ground, if I am in an outdoor circle? (disabled)

Question #7:  Do I HAVE to take formal year and a day classes? ($ is an issue)

Question #8: The book I read says never charge money for your craft, yet I know several people charge for Tarot readings,  so is it some stuff is ok, or what--confused?

Question #9: Do I HAVE to wear special clothes for rituals? (I think I may have an issue with size, and $)

Question #10: Do I HAVE to wear special jewelry for rituals?($ could end up being an issue)

PLEASE, help a newbie out! THANK YOU

remember to go HERE, and comment for a chance to win giveaways

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Rough Weekend

 We have had a rough weekend...thus my MIA status.

20"+ snow started Christmas afternoon and then it snowed round the clock until Monday morning, NJ and down to NC and including NC were in a state of "Snow Emergency"...

No internet or television on and off on Sunday and then for approx. 24 hours.(Monday)  Monday: No power for 3+ hours, came back on for about 45-50min. then off again for 30 min. then back on for over 1 hour and then back off for approx. 5 hours.

Ron's Lymphodema (in one lower leg has been bad, he refuses to wear THE socks, but he is taking the water pill) PLUS his Neuropathy in the legs has been bad, the leg that is swollen, he has been getting cramping in the thigh, please put him on your prayer list, or light a healing candle etc.

For myself, this winter (which is just new) is really affected my hand/wrist (with the missing bones) a LOT more than any winter since it happened in 2005. Of course it also affecting my spine and knees, but the wrist has been actually surprisingly bad. (I might try my tens unit later)

Other than that, Tom has had his root canal and temporary crown put in, and his car window has been fixed.(if he opened it he couldn't close it most of the time--not good for the winter)

I hope everyone else fared a bit better this past weekend. I WOULD LOVE TO HEAR HOW MUCH SNOW Y'ALL HAD!!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

12 days of YULE by Lady 5 (some art)

Ok, so these are NOT YULE, and geared toward Christmas.

BUT..they are NOT religious so I think it is ok to post for the Yule post.

These are  12 tags of Christmas  from the kit of "Heartstrings Designs"

a few I added stuff to, like liquid pearls, or ink.   Some of them still need something else.  The ones that have transparency pieces on them, are hard to read, sorry.

 The teddy bear says: "The best Christmas gift is a happy family wrapped up in love."
The Reindeer says: Dashing through the snow"
The Star tag says: "We wish  you a  Merry  Christmas." 
The Tree tag says: "The Stockings were hung." (with a picture of a mantle with stockings)

 Note: Heartstrings Designs is known for for their wonderful shapes made from MAT BOARD like they use in framing. They have monthly scrapbooking kits and monthly card kits.. If you sign up, Please mention that Susan Guzy from NJ sent you.
The angel tag says: "Peace" & "Hope"
The Poinsettia tag says: "Christmas Warms the Heart" (with picture of a heart)
The Snow man tag, I wrote on with a sharpie, as the transparency is a flourish-y oval, so it says: "Let it snow!"

REMEMBER, if you are following me, and especially following the 12 days of YULE, go to the original post HERE
you  may want to read it and post a comment

Friday, December 24, 2010

Alphabe-Thursday & the 12 days of YULE(day4)-- Wishing you all a very REEL Christmas

sharing for Alphabe-Thursday at Jenny's Place 
and also for the 12 days of YULE at Lady Cattra's

In 1997, After 12 years of marriage, 13 years of being with my hubby. Ten years of having his miserable mother living with us, and the last year, my being her 24/7 caregiver, along with  raising my daughter-15, our son-11and our daughter-10 (the latter 2 with ADHD like me, hubby is ADD and a diabetic so you know there are mood swings, LOL----LIFE is NEVER dull in my house)

I was expecting an Opal ring for my Christmas, I had been asking for one for years. We did not buy gifts for us for each other every year, just once in a few years, this year he had asked for a new cordless drill and a new fishing rod (he actually picked it out and told me where) so Christmas came.

I had lovingly wrapped his drill, and other small gifts, socks etc. and put them under the tree. The rod I put a bow on, and put behind the tree.  All the gifts under the tree had the kids name on them, I didn't see any with my name on it. It was Christmas eve, so I said, perhaps he is waiting til the morning.

The morning came with all the havoc of our kids, diving through everything without patience for mom to take pictures etc. Ron opened his drill, loved it, went right to the fishing rod, said "good, you got the right one."  Then he stuck his hand inside the tree and pulled out a tiny little gift bag. He said "oh, what is this?"  I got excited, I could feel the adrenaline rush, it had to be my Opal ring!  He said, "Oh, this is for mommy!" the kids all got quiet, I could barely contain myself. (mind you I am NOT a big jewelry kind of girl, but I have always loved opals, and feel drawn to them, and had wanted an opal ring for years) He brought the little bag over to me, my daughter took the camera, prepping for a photo, she knew what I wanted, she knew I took on more than most mom's (did I say I taught Sunday school and had 2 GS troops), She knew hubby could be very difficult at times, she knew my MIL was a PITA when she was alive, up until September.  April was as excited as I was!  I opened the bag, took out the small jewelry box. I took a breath, the kids were all yelling "open it mom, open it!" MY heart was beating right out of my chest, I looked at Ron, he had a huge smile on his face.  I knew, I KNEW it was my opal ring!!  I opened the box, and found...a pair of small gold teddy bear post earrings.

I thought I would burst into tears. I just sat there, staring at them, they were so tiny, looking like they were for a child. Our youngest daughter said, "Those are cute dad, now give mom the real gift." The other 2 chimed in, "YEA, She was so excited, you better give it to her." Ron said, "that is it, other than the small gifts under the tree." (socks, dish towels etc) I put the box back in the bag and hung it back in the tree and said thanks. I then went into the kitchen to get a cup of tea, and cry quietly to myself. Meanwhile, my daughter said to her step-dad, "I think you really messed up." Our son Tom said, "Dad, mom is upset, really, see how calm and quiet she is?"  Ron didn't say anything.

While relaxing in the LR, watching the kids play with their new stuff. Ron went over to the love seat and said out loud, "Oh, what is this over here?" He leaned down and brought up a box from behind the love seat. The box was like 5 x7x 4.  I started to get excited again, as did the girls, my son was not interested this time.  He brought it over to me, it was no wrapped, it was just a cardboard box. He put it on my lap. I looked at it, thinking, ok he did the box-inside-a-box thing. I started to open it, but he pushed his hands between mine and opened the box, and he exclaimed, "OH, the REEL Fairy came!" I looked inside, it was freaking huge-ass fishing reel. I looked at him. Ron said, "The Reel Fairy came and brought the reel to go with the rod Mommy got me." NO ONE said a word.  I went upstairs. I heard him say, "What?, what?" that's funny...the REEL fairy, get it?"  I did not answer him.
 April said, "we get it, it's stupid, and I think you are in trouble with mom." He answered, "I'm always in trouble with your mom."

After sharing this story with friend's of ours a few days after Christmas, they BOTH told him, "Man, you really F***ed-up, you better hurry up and get her that opal ring before you find yourself in divorce court."

I wrote about this story, as a short story- adding other things, like the Christmas party I had the Saturday after Christmas (but said it was the Saturday before Christmas) I added in our Christmas eve candle light service at church on christmas eve. The baking and cooking was included, the wrapping (I used to go all out).
I handed it in as my mid-term that following semester in college to my "Creative Writing professor".
It was titled  "The Reel Christmas", I got an A+.

Epilogue:  I rec'd my Beautiful Opal ring, that valentine's day. :)

I wish each and every one of you the HAPPIEST of HOLIDAYS, whatever you celebrate and a very happy, healthy and prosperous New Year!!

12 days of YULE for me day 3

Hello welcome to day 3 for me of 12 days of YULE hosted by Lady Cattra's

Today I share my first ever YULE cards:

 The front; printed holiday paper, witch hat-Martha Stewart punch, holly leaves and oak leaf-old sizzix dies, White Liquid Applique- on hat, Bic Mark-its!
Inside card, greeting found on internet, it was printed in red, green and black...not sure why it scanned black only

Remember to visit day 1 to comment and enter for giveaways:  day 21 of the 21 days of Yule, Longest night Ball, The 12 days of Yule  it remains open until day 12

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

DAY 21 of Aisha's YULE & day 1 of Lady Cattra's 12 days of YULE & The LONGEST NIGHT Ball by Confessions of a Kitchen Witch

PLEASE, PLEASE come back later this evening for my post.  (dental issues with son and my own sinuses---arrrgh)  Thank you :)

EDIT: it's here!

Hello all my friends and anyone new, I wish you all great greetings of the season!  I had such a wonderful plan in mind for the Longest night Ball post which would also be my day 21 post of Aisha's 21 days of YULE.  As you have all experienced in your own lives I am sure, laid plans and all!  I will not mention any of the reasons nor the yukkiness of life. This is a night for merriment!

so without further adeiu...

Here is the wonderful mask I made for tonight's Ball. (It was supposed to be on my face when photographed but alas I am alone.) Picture me with a sky blue turtleneck with spakly snowflakes on it, wearing this:

This is made with metallic paint, and then liquid pearls, stickles, and some extra doo-dads.
I used shades of a gorgeous bright blue and a slightly lighter shade, I did half of the mask in each, and then reversed them for the second coat. Then I used a blue, light blue, silver and white liquid pearls. Then turquoise stickles and sugar glitter as eye shadow.  Cut a piece of the wonderful peacock turquoise glitter floral stick, and some baubles from the bridal isle. I finished up with a metal snow flake on one cheek and a plastic, smaller one with silver glitter on the other.
I hope you like it!  
**If this event becomes an annual blog party, then next year, this will be what I giveaway, as I will make a new one for that Ball.

Though it has nothing to do with YULE, I have always been fascinated with Carnivale in Venice and would love to do that some time in my life.  I made this earlier in the year for a friend. it is a 4 x 4 for an alphabet album.

I used a black and white picture of a famous bridge in Venice for the background, a collage image of a fine couple out for a Ball. Collage letter stamps in embossed gold, and a chipboard letter "C" covered in Blue, green and purple glitter. I added glitter to the corners also.

Meanwhile back to 

for Aisha's YULE Blog Party at By The Broomstick.
Please visit the other blogs that are participating(above)

PLEASE pick a number if you haven't already won something!!

I am still a newb, learning. Therefore any legend, myth, devotion etc. will be coming from someplace I read it, and I will be giving credit to the right people.

ADDITIONALLY, I have a small gift tree that has a some ornaments on it, but it also has 21 little gift bags or envelopes that are numbered 1-21.  Each day I will pick a winner from the comments for that day.  These giveaways are priced from $1-$5, and there are a few are like booby prizes...I am doing this FOR FUN!!

*be a follower
*tell me something about that day's post that means something to you, or touches you etc.
*list your name
*pick a number from 1-21*  (*each day obviously there will be numbers listed as OUT, it will be your responsibility to pay attention to each day's posts, to see the number that is no longer available)

Please pick a number between 1-21 except for 11, 5, 7, 9, 21, 20,4, 16, 13, 3 & 17.

I will be picking 3 lucky winners from the numbers left, if I get people commenting and picking numbers :)

also for  Jennifer over at Confessions of a Kitchen Witch
and also for Lady Cattra's 12 days of Yule, as they all overlap

 a special Yule post and one final devotional:
A Blessed Solstice to you all!
From Patti Wigington, your Guide to Paganism / Wiccan

It's the time of the winter solstice, or Yule, for those of us who live in the Northern Hemisphere. We're celebrating Yule, and marking the return of the sun after the longest night of the year. It's a time of rebirth and renewal, and the long journey back out of the darkness.

For those of you down below the equator, you're observing the summer solstice, or Litha, right now -- gardens are in full bloom, the earth is vibrant and alive, and the days are long and sunny.

Both Yule and Litha are celebrations of the sun -- different aspects of it, but solar holidays nonetheless. Whichever one you are celebrating this weekend, may you and your loved ones have a blessed and bountiful solstice Sabbat!

The gardens are blooming, and summer is in full swing. Fire up the barbeque, turn on the sprinkler, and enjoy the celebrations of Midsummer! Also called Litha, this summer solstice Sabbat honors the longest day of the year. Take advantage of the extra hours of daylight and spend as much time as you can outdoors. While you're planning your celebrations, though, you may want to take a minute to read up on:

Celebrate midsummer by getting outside!
Image © Getty Images

Rituals and Ceremonies

Depending on your individual spiritual path, there are many different ways you can celebrate Litha, but the focus is nearly always on celebrating the power of the sun. It's the time of year when the crops are growing heartily and the earth has warmed up. we can spend long sunny afternoons enjoying the outdoors, and getting back to nature under the long daylight hours.
Here are a few rituals you may want to think about trying -- and remember, any of them can be adapted for either a solitary practitioner or a small group, with just a little planning ahead.

Traditions and Trends

Interested in learning about some of the history behind Litha? Here's some background on Midsummer celebrations - learn who the gods and goddesses of summer are, how they've been honored throughout the centuries, and about the magic of stone circles!

Handfasting Season is Here!

June is a traditional time for weddings, but if you're Pagan or Wiccan, a Handfasting ceremony may be more appropriate. Read on to find out the origins of this custom, how you can have a fantastic ceremony, selecting a cake, and some great ideas on gifts for your guests!

Crafts and Creations

As Litha approaches, you can decorate your home (and keep your kids entertained) with a number of easy craft projects. Celebrate the sun's energy with an elemental garden, a fiery incense blend, and a magic staff to use in ritual!

Feasting and Food

No Pagan celebration is complete without a meal to go along with it. For Litha, celebrate with foods that honor the fire and energy of the sun. Enjoy light summery snack wraps, some fiery grilled salmon, spicy and sweet candied ginger, and more.
  • Lemon Balm Tea
  • Savory Snack Wraps
  • Fresh Fruit Fennel Salad
  • Fiery Grilled Salmon
  • Grilled Summer Veggies

  • A Prayer to the Sun God
    Thousands of years ago, Ra was honored as the Sun God. Today, many people still hear his call, especially at Yule. At the time of the winter solstice, Ra begins his long  journey  back to earth.  Take a moment to honor him as our ancestors once did, and celebrate the return of the sun.

    Welcome back the sun with a prayer to Ra, the sun god of ancient Egypt!
    Image © Getty Images


    Welcome back the sun with this prayer to Ra, or adapt it to the gods of your tradition

    Great sun, wheel of fire, Ra in your glory,
    hear me as I honor you
    on this, the shortest day of the year.
    Summer has gone, passed us by,
    the fields are dead and cold,
    all of earth sleeps in your absence.
    Even in the darkest times,
    you light the way for those who would need a beacon,
    of hope, of brightness,
    shining in the night.
    Winter is here, and colder days coming,
    the fields are bare and the livestock thin.
    We light these candles in your honor,
    that you might gather your strength
    and bring life back to the world.
    O Ra, mighty sun above us,
    we ask you to return, to bring back to us
    the light and the warmth of your fire.
    Bring life back to earth,
    Bring light back to earth.
    Hail Ra! Ruler of the sun!

 As a Yule gift I offer 2 Home made ornaments that I made using spun glass, one has plastic components and the other paper. These will be picked from comments left. Even those who have already picked a number for Aisha's blog party posts and won, The only rule, is that you comment, and you are a follower.  Here they are:
 The larger one is on green spun glass, the smaller one is white.

bright and warm blessings to all!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Day 20 of AishaOaktree's 21 days of YULE blog party

Each day for the next 2 days, I will be sharing  either some legends, myths, devotions, my own thoughts perhaps a recipe or 2 on my blog for Aisha's YULE Blog Party at By The Broomstick.
Please visit the other blogs that are participating(above)

PLEASE pick a number if you haven't already won something!!

I am still a newb, learning. Therefore any legend, myth, devotion etc. will be coming from someplace I read it, and I will be giving credit to the right people.

ADDITIONALLY, I have a small gift tree that has a some ornaments on it, but it also has 21 little gift bags or envelopes that are numbered 1-21.  Each day I will pick a winner from the comments for that day.  These giveaways are priced from $1-$5, and there are a few are like booby prizes...I am doing this FOR FUN!!

*be a follower
*tell me something about that day's post that means something to you, or touches you etc.
*list your name
*pick a number from 1-21*  (*each day obviously there will be numbers listed as OUT, it will be your responsibility to pay attention to each day's posts, to see the number that is no longer available)

Picture of gift tree not ready, will add asap, so sorry for this, I want to do it outside on my little table, but it has been too windy.
You can't see the gifts anyway, they are wrapped and in bags, or just there#s are in the bags or envelopes.   NO ONE from DAY ONE picked a #, so I asked hubby to pick one and I could take it out of the running...that # is the pick a number between 1-21 except for 11, 5, 7, 9, 21, 20,4, 16, 13, & 3.

we had a winner with #3

I only allow 24 hours per post for picking numbers, comments always accepted :), but picking a # must be in the first 24 hours after I post each day! additionally only 1 win per person during the 21 days. Thank you.

An age old tradition of the "Cloved Orange" pomander

Some say it goes back to medieval times for odor, some say no it started with Colonial America and yet others say it started in France during the Renaissance.
here is something I found:

Pomanders history
Throughout history, the importance of scent has never been denied. Mystical and powerful, scent was an offering, a force of attraction and a curse. The pomander, a ball filled with perfumes worn from the Middle Ages onward, was a form of protection against sickness and death.
  1. The word "pomander" originates from the French "pomme d'ambre." A common interpretation of this phrase is "apple of ambergris," referring to the wax substance used as a base in pomander recipes. Others take the phrase to mean "apple of amber" or "golden apple," as in the fragrant citrus fruits exchanged during holidays for good luck.
  1. The pomander became popular during the Middle Ages when the black death and other ailments ran rampant. Sanitation during the era was lamentably lacking. The streets and even some homes were strewn with filth, bodily fluids and the discarded remnants of past meals. People thought that the cause of their problems lay in the resulting stench lingering about the city. The belief went that the pleasant scent of a pomander could repel the disease in the air.
  1. Several recipes for pomanders survive from the era. To the base of ambergris, musk, civet, rose water, and other perfumes and spices were added. The mix would then be inserted into the pomander's container. A pomander could be worn around the neck or waist. Many women attached them to their girdles.
  1. Both men and women wore pomanders, most of whom hailed from the elite classes of society. Queen Elizabeth I is frequently depicted wearing one, as are other nobles and notables of the day. People took great pride in their pomanders. Simple pomanders were made of wood, while the most stunning examples were worked in silver or gold, studded with precious stones, and etched with intricate designs. Some pomanders were divided into sections, similar to an orange, into which its wearer would place several different scents.
  1. As time wore on, the pomander began to take on the "golden apple" interpretation. By the 18th century, a pomander was more often than not an orange studded with cloves and other spices. These made for popular gifts during Christmas and New Years. Many people make this type of pomander today in order to scent their homes and clothing                                                        
 We made these a lot of years when I was growing up. this is only the third time in my adult life that I have made one. the last 2 were before 1985. (WOW)

You can look up on the Internet how to make them, and many sites will tell you to wrap a ribbon around the orange twice basically  quartering it, and use the ribbon to hang.  We have done it that way, but not always.  Some instructions will also tell you to pierce the orange first and then stick the clove in.  You can even use the tines of a fork for even spacing.

I did NOT use a ribbon. I did NOT pierce the orange first. I just poked the cloves in, and then I pierced it to put the thick cording through the "navel" end for hanging(I used a 7mm 2.75" yarn needle). Then I pierced it here and there randomly, after it was covered in cloves. then I moved it around in a bag with cinnamon and nutmeg in it.  This way it will not dry out as fast, and if I want to speed up the drying, I can simply pierce it randomly again.  Here are some pictures I hope they are self-explanatory.  (Tap off the excess spices.)

I was watching "Burning Man Lives" a 2 part documentary that i taped months ago, I finally watched it...I so want to go there one year.

 getting there
 blurry but you get the idea
 I started with a curvy line
 Only a little spot left
 I do not bother with the "twig" end
 Leave the navel end empty for the tie(whatever type you use)

 needle and cording

 I pulled the cording "doubled" through, then snipped off, and pulled


 Baggie of spices
 The excess I tapped off
 The Finished pomander

CHECK THIS OUT!! (could make a nice last minute gift)

My owl barn:

Owl Lover 2011 Calendar

this place is awesome, full of 30 great OWLS by artists from all over, you can design your own calendar and then print it out.
I did it, and Love it!

Here are just 4 out of the 30 I chose for my calendar:

 by Kelly Ann
 by Liau Kwee Eng
 by Maggie Hurley
by Theresa Davio