Friday Favorites: Corn Dollies and Brighid's Cross

Happy Friday! It's Imbolc weekend (Lughnasadh in the southern hemisphere) for us Pagany-types and Superbowl weekend for American football fans. The Imbolc edition of Imramma Magazine will be out tomorrow, and there are all kinds of great articles, tips, recipes, etc... be sure you check it out!

In the meantime, if you're looking for a cool weekend craft, here's a site that teaches you how to make a corn dolly using wheat bundles purchased at a craft store. It's simple to make, and the finished product is really beautiful.  You can find the craft at I Heart the Goddess blog.

Here's how to make Brighid's Cross:

Flashback Friday: My Imbolc Altar from a few years ago:

Blessings of the season to you all!

Thursday's Child: There are days...

There are days when I feel like it's nothing but struggle. In my introductory post, I explained that for years, I thought "Thursday's Child has far to go" meant that I'd always have to fight to get anywhere. Sometimes, it's like I'm knee-deep in quicksand and mud, while wearing combat boots with 50 lb weights. It can be wearying, and I want to give up.

I know I'm not alone in this. Everyone feels this way, at times. Somehow, that just isn't comforting. This is about ME, not the nebulous, "rest of the world". I want to wallow in self-pity, hide under the covers, and just let it all fall apart. Wouldn't that be nice? Let someone else be responsible, for once.

No, I know I can't. If I did, I'd just have to clean up the mess and go through it all over again- and, that thought is even more formidable than trudging through the mire. It's not that failure isn't an option. Surrender is what's out of the question. It isn't in my DNA. I have to keep going, because that's who I am. I have people and other creatures depending on me. There's no time for wallowing, here.

So, *deep breath* pick up left foot- put it down;repeat with the right. Eventually, it'll get better. If nothing else, these legs are going to be in seriously good shape when I get out of here. And, isn't mud good for the skin? Hell, rich folks pay big money to bathe in this stuff!

Ok, I can do this...

Beannú na déithe's n'aindhéithe ort
("The blessings of the gods and the non-gods upon you".)

Thursday's child is a series of blog posts where I examine what it means "to go far". I hope you'll join me in this exploration each week.

#Witchy_Wednesday: Herb Codes- Guest Blogger Herbalist DJ Martin

My dearest friends and readers,

Last week, I posted a list of herb codes I had collected over the years for your grimoires. My friend and Master Herbalist, DJ Martin, tried to comment on the post, but  the site here wasn't cooperating with her. She has some information that you may want to take into account with those codes, so I asked her if she'd like to have some space here to share. She graciously agreed:

Much has been made in recent years of some unusual nicknames for herbs. To paraphrase a lot of blogs I’ve read, “Witches don’t use animal parts. It’s just code for a plant. [For example] ‘Wolf’s Foot’ really means Bugleweed.”
To be fair, these names really are code and those lists you’re reading and copying are, for the most part, accurate. However, witches (and healers) didn't always hold animals as sacred as we do today. In early to medieval times, nearly everything had a medicinal or magical use; they weren't shy about killing an animal without being humane about it if a part was needed to ease human suffering.
There is even a manuscript, Medicina de Quadrupedibus (Medicine of Quadrupeds), usually attributed to Sextus Placitus and probably written in the early part of the eleventh century.  It is not intact itself, but is appended to the Old English Herbarium, which is from the same time frame. It deals with the medicinal properties of various animal products and after a preface begins:
“There is an animal which is named taxo, that is badger in English. Take that beast and do off the teeth from it [while yet] alive, those which it has biggest, and thus say: «In the name of the almighty God I kill thee and beat thy teeth off thee»[…]”
From Bald’s Leechbook, (leech being a term for what today would be a doctor) the copy of which is dated to circa 950CE:
For swollen eyes, take a living raven, take the eyes out of it and, still living, bring it into water […]
From the same source:
[…]For the same [a headache], find little stones in the stomach of a swallow’s fledglings and hold them so they do not touch earth nor water nor other stones, sew three of them together in whatever you want, put them on the man to whom they are needful […]
In the Lacgnuna Manuscript, dated to about 1000CE:
If the eyes be blocked, take raven’s gall[bladder] and white maring, wool-lettuce and salmon’s gall[bladder]; put them together; drop it into the eye through a flax-coloured cloth and a little sharp juice; then the eye clears.
Animal blood was used frequently, both medicinally and magically. Dove’s Blood Ink, usually used in written love spells, was blood drawn from a dove. Was the dove killed simply for its blood? Probably. But the rest of the bird was more than likely plucked and roasted for dinner. Today, we leave the poor doves alone, add a few drops of Rose essential oil to some red ink and call it “Dove’s Blood”.

In conclusion, bear in mind the age of whatever it is you’re reading. “Bat’s Wing” may mean a Holly leaf or it really could mean the wing of a bat.

Kallan's note: I want to thank DJ for taking the time to share her knowledge with us here. As a history major, I'd also like to put some of this into context. The period of time DJ references here is known as "The Dark Ages" or the "Early Middle Ages". 

Prior to this, ancient Europe was populated by a multitude of tribes, each with their own set of beliefs and traditions, but with more in common than we have been led to believe. One of these commonalities was in their "shamanic" practices. There is a growing amount of evidence that the healers of these tribes shared many of the same ideas as those of the natives of the American continent. They did, in fact, have a reverence for plants, animals, etc...

I highly recommend the works of Brian Bates, former Chairman of Psychology at the University of Sussex. He is currently a Senior Visiting Research Fellow there in the Sussex Institute and a Visiting Professor at the University of Brighton. He is best known as the author of best-selling books on the shamanic wisdom of Anglo-Saxon England, and for his award-winning course at Sussex on "Shamanic Consciousness". My personal favorite is "The Way of Wyrd."

As we seek to understand and reconstruct Pagan history and beliefs, it's important that we put context around the timeframes in which we study. 

Thanks to DJ for reminding me of that, and for sharing her knowledge with us all. If you'd like to learn more about herbs and plants, or even read some of DJ's fictional works, please visit her at

#Friday Favorites: Short Films That Make Me Happy

Happy Friday!

This always seems like the easiest day to go to work, if you're someone who has the weekend off. It's a day of promise and jubilation. For this Friday Favorites, I've chosen some short films that make me happy. 

I was going to embed them all. While none of them has any adult type content, your employer's internet policy might make them NSFW. I hope that's not the case, as these bring me lots of joy, and I want to share that with you.

The first one is called, "The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore." This one is for all of my fellow writers and bibliophiles.

The second one is entitled, "The Missing Scarf
It's an Irish film narrated by George Takei. 

The third, is "The Paperman"
I love that it's in black and white, and is set in the 1940s

The next one is called "Room on the Broom" and it's just cute. 

And, lastly, "Fallin Floyd"
This one is from The Netherlands. I like its Tex Avery style.

That should keep you blissfully occupied for a little while today.Which one was your favorite? Leave me a comment and let me know!

Sláinte Mhaith!

Thursday's Child: What Is Success?

"Thursday's child has far to go..."

Welcome to the second installment of the Thursday's Child series. Thank you for coming back!
Today, I want to examine the meaning of "success"; Just what does it look like?

The dictionary defines success as:
  • the accomplishment of an aim or purpose.
"the president had some success in restoring confidence"
synonyms:favorable outcome, successfulness, successful result, triumph;
"the success of the scheme"
  • the attainment of popularity or profit.
"the success of his play"
"the trappings of success"

  • a person or thing that achieves desired aims or attains prosperity.
"I must make a success of my business"
 In western culture, someone is deemed "a success" if he/she attains wealth. Some would add fame here, but that tends to go hand-in-hand with wealth. Some of the wealthiest people may be reclusive, so it isn't always that way, but one can also be famous and not considered a success. Some may achieve infamy as well.

In other cultures, success may look quite different. One is a success if he/she raises respectful children, or is promoted to a middle-management position for a corporation, or has a small business that turns a profit.

On an individual level, success may have nothing to do with money or fame or even promotions at work or in business.

What each of us values most is where we can see our success. If you are happy doing what you do, is that not the achievement of desired aims? Here, in America, we have "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness". Happiness is the ultimate goal, no? Then, if that's the case, are we not successful when we have achieved that "aim or purpose"?

Studies have shown that the wealthy are no more or less happy than the rest of us. The adage "money doesn't buy happiness" clearly rings true. So, if we're striving for money because we think that once we achieve a certain power-class or social standing it will make us happy, we are mistaken.

Living for the future is not a means to happiness (and therefore, success). It is in this moment that it can be chosen. Happiness is a choice. It is a state of mind.

Many eastern philosophies teach us that by detaching from the outcome, we are able to attain a state of peace and fulfillment that we cannot actualize if we are constantly working for something that has yet to happen. This doesn't mean you shouldn't work hard for a goal or try to achieve something. It simply means that you ARE a success whenever you choose to be one.

That means right now, in this moment, you can select your mood, your view of life and yourself, and determine to be happy. It isn't easy in the difficult times, but I also maintain that it isn't easy when the road is smooth, either. Aren't a lot of us just waiting for the other shoe to drop? Aren't we feeling a bit dissatisfied when it's all going too well?

Success is simply you determining that life is what you make it, and regardless of what anyone else thinks, you can be successful- every moment of every day.

Beannú na déithe's n'aindhéithe ort !
("The blessings of the gods and the non-gods upon you".)

Thursday's child is a new series of blog posts where I examine what it means "to go far". I hope you'll join me in this exploration each week

Witchy Wednesday: Herbal Codes for Your Grimoire

"Eye of newt, and toe of frog,
Wool of bat, and tongue of dog,
Adder’s fork, and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg, and owlet’s wing,—
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble." ~Shakespeare's Macbeth

Scale of dragon, tooth of wolf...these terms all conjure the image of evil witches killing animals and using their body parts for potions and brews.
Most of you know that witches don't kill animals or use their body parts for magic. So what's the real story behind these terms?

In older times, the witch (wise woman, herbalist, doctor) wouldn't use scientific names for herbs.. they were named as they saw them. Body parts were literally parts of the plant such as:

  • Eye: Inner part of a blossom
  • Foot, Leg, Paw, Toe or Wing: The leaf
  • Guts: The roots and stalk
  • Hair: Dried stringy herbs
  • Head: Flower
  • Heart, Private Parts or Sex Organs: Seed or Bud
  • Tail: Stem
  • Tongue : Petal

There were also herbs that were called by animal names.
 Here's a compilation of herbal 'codes' commonly used for both herbalism and magic. My bet is you'll at least be surprised by one or two here. 


Adder's Tongue: Dogstooth Violet; Plantain

Ass's Foot: Coltsfoot


Bat's Wing : Holly Leaf

Bat's Wool : Moss

Bear's Foot: Lady's Mantle

Bird's Eye: Germander, Speedwell

Blood: Elder sap or another tree sap

Blood from a Head: Lupine

Blood from a Shoulder: Bear's Breeches

Blood of a Goose: Mulberry tree's sap

Blood of a Hamadryas Baboon: Blood of a spotted gecko

Blood of a Snake: Hematite

Blood of an Eye: Tamarisk Gall

Blood of Ares: Purslane

Blood of Hephaistos: Wormwood

Blood of Hestia: Chamomile

Bloody Fingers: Foxglove

Blue Jay: Bay laurel

Bone of an Ibis: Buckthorn

Brains: Cherry tree gum [this phrase usually designates any fruit tree gum]

Bull's Blood or Seed of Horus: Horehound

Bull's Foot: Coltsfoot

Bull's Semen: Eggs of the blister beetle


Calf's Snout: Snapdragon

Capon's Tail: Valerian

Cat: Catnip

Cat's Foot: Canada Snake Root and/or Ground Ivy

Clot: Great Mullein

Corpse Candles: Mullein

Cuddy's Lungs: Great Mullein

Crocodile Dung: Ethiopian Earth

Crow Foot: Cranesbill, wild geranium, buttercup


Devil's Dung: Asafoetida

Dog: Couch grass

Dog's Mouth: Snapdragon

Dog's Tongue: Hounds Tongue

Dove's Foot: Wild Geranium

Dragon's Blood: Resin of Draco palm

Dragon's Scales: Bistort leaves


Eagle: Wild Garlic of Fenugreek

Ear of an Ass: Comfrey

Ears of a Goat: St. John's Wort

Englishman's Foot: Common Plantain

Eye of Christ: Germander, Speedwell

Eye of the Day: Common daisy

Eye of the Star: Horehound

Eyes: Inner part of a blossom; Aster, Daisy, Eyebright


Fat from a Head: Spurge (Euphorbia)

Fingers: Cinquefoil

Five Fingers: Cinquefoil

Foot: Leaf

Frog: Cinquefoil

Frog's Foot: Bulbous buttercup

From the Belly: Earth-apple

From the Foot: Houseleek

From the Loins: Chamomile


Goat's Foot: Ash Weed

God's Hair: Hart's Tongue Fern

Gosling Wing: Goosegrass

Graveyard Dust: Mullein, but can also mean actual dirt from a graveyard.

Great Ox-eye: Ox-eye daisy

Guts: The roots and stalk of a plant


Hair: Dried stringy herbs; ripe male fern

Hair of a Hamadryas Baboon: Dill Seed

Hair of Venus: Maidenhair fern

Hare's Beard: Great mullein

Hawk: Hawkweed

Hawk's Heart: Wormwood seed or wormwood crown

Head: Flower of a plant

Heart: Walnut; bud, seed, or nut

Hind's Tongue: Hart's Tongue Fern

Horse Hoof: Coltsfoot

Horse Tongue: Hart's Tongue Fern


Jacob's Staff: Great Mullein

Jupiter's Staff: Great Mullein


King's Crown: Black Haw

Kronos's Blood: Cedar


Lamb: Lettuce

Lamb's Ears: Betony

Leg: Leaf

Lion's Hair: Tongue of a Turnip [i.e., the leaves of the taproot]

Lion's Tooth: Dandelion aka Priest's Crown

Lion Semen: Human Semen


Man's Bile: Turnip sap


Nightingale: Hops


Paw: Leaf

Physician's Bone: Sandstone

Pig's Tail: Leopard's Bane

Privates: Seed


Ram's Head: American Valerian

Rat: Valerian

Red Cockscomb: Amaranth


Seed of Horus: Horehound

Semen of Ammon: Houseleek

Semen of Ares: Clover

Semen of Helios: White Hellebore

Semen of Hephaistos: Fleabane

Semen of Heracles: Mustard-rocket

Semen of Hermes: Dill

Shepherd's Heart: Shepherd's Purse

Skin of Man: Fern

Skull: Skullcap Mushroom

Snake: Bistort

Snake's Ball of Thread: Soapstone

Snake's Head: Leech

Sparrow's Tongue: Knotweed

Swine's Snout: Dandelion leaves


Tail: Stem

Tears of a Hamadryas Baboon: Dill Juice

Teeth: Pine Cones

Titan's Blood: Wild Lettuce

Toad: Toadflax; Sage

Toe: Leaf

Tongue: Petal


Unicorn's Horn: False Unicorn Root; True Unicorn Root

Urine: Dandelion


Weasel: Rue

Weasel Snout: Yellow Dead Nettles/Yellow Archangel

White Man's Foot: Common Plantain

Wing: Leaf

Wolf Claw: Club Moss

Wolf Foot: Bugle Weed

Wolf's Milk: Euphorbia

Woodpecker: Peony

Worms: Thin Roots

Note: This was originally posted a few years ago on my first Secret Life blog.. Feel free to copy/paste into your own Book of Shadows or Grimoire!

Friday Favorites: Omnia's Earth Warrior

In this blog's former incarnation, I had a feature entitled, "The Friday Frolic". I've decided to change it up for the new model, and use "Friday Favorites" instead.

I'll share something I love each Friday. It might be a video, a website, a poem, etc... everything is game. Today, I want to share one of my favorite bands on the planet- Omnia.

Many of you already know and love them. I haven't met a Pagan yet who didn't ( and, please, don't let it be you that rains on my parade!). This particular video inspires me, on so many levels. The music is delightful, the lyrics are empowering, and the people/scenery make me want to shout, "YES! This is my tribe!"

So, I wish you all a very Happy Friday, and hope this video invigorates you, too! Hail, Earth Warriors!

Thursday's Child: Introduction

Thursday's child has far to go...

I'm sure you've heard that poem:
Monday's child is fair of face,
Tuesdays child is full of grace;
Wednesday's child is full of woe,
Thursday's child has far to go;
Friday's child is loving and giving,
Saturday's child works hard for a living;
But the child that is born on the Sabbath day
Is bonny and blithe, and good and gay.

I was born on a Thursday. According to those who've analyzed this poem, Thursday's child will go far in life. Interestingly enough, I grew up believing it meant I would have a long row to hoe. In other words, I'd have to put in a lot of work if I wanted to succeed at anything.  And, that's pretty much been how my life has gone- working hard, struggling, always feeling like I have to overachieve at something or overcome something in life. For much longer than I'd like to admit, there was a part of me that felt "not good enough"; not warranting of accolade or praises- and I was always trying to make up for my existence.

What I've come to grasp is that, no matter what, I am a success. What I do is not so important as who I am. Not everyone in my life is going to agree that I am a person of value. Not everyone who claims to know me actually does. They know me from their own perspectives, their own agendas and their own agreements with themselves. Those who do not know me will judge me harshly. Those who do, will love me for who I am, and not what I achieve or do not achieve to their own ends. And, those who love me deeply will tend to overlook my faults and shortcomings, and may overly praise me for things I've done. In truth, the journey itself is the achievement.

I am not only the sum of my experiences. I am the creation of my choosing. Yes, each of us can say we are the product of our childhood environment, society, culture, et al.. but at some point in life, we must take responsibility for who we are, and who we want to be, and act accordingly.

I am not static. I am a dynamic, continuously changing person. Who I am today is not who I was five years ago, ten years ago, or thirty years ago. I choose to seek opportunities to learn, to grow, to strive toward the goal of becoming the best me possible. I have value to me. And, I am the person whose opinion must matter most, because I am the only one who can possibly truly know me.

I am with me 24/7. There is no escaping from myself. I know every thought I have, every motivation, every dream, every failure. No one can make me feel 'not good enough' but me. I have achieved, I have survived, and I have thrived in my almost 52 years on the planet. By my own standards, I am good enough and then some.

By my own knowledge of who I was, am and strive to be, I am triumphant.

Beannú na déithe's n'aindhéithe ort !
("The blessings of the gods and the non-gods upon you".)

Thursday's child is a new series of blog posts where I examine what it means "to go far". I hope you'll join me in this exploration each week.

JeSuis Charlie

Yesterday,in an act of horrific insanity, 10 journalists and 2 police officers were killed in France. Those 10 journalists worked for the magazine, Charlie Hebdo. Their ''crime" was portraying the prophet Mohammed in an unflattering light. I am profoundly and deeply affected by this incident, as I feel strongly about the rights of every human being to express themselves.

I am a writer. I am a political and religious commentator. I have poked at the sacred cows of those whose beliefs and mandates separate them from others and make them feel superior to the rest of humanity.  I believe that in shedding a ridiculous light upon the ridiculous, we find our sense of humor can teach us to see truth.

And, that is what Charlie Hebdo's cartoons were doing. By western standards, they're mild. Some might even say they were kind of warm and fuzzy in nature; certainly not something worthy of violence in retaliation. Then again, I see no reason why any cartoon should provoke someone to murder.

Extremism should be the subject of ridicule. When we bind ourselves to the assumed ideals from bronze-aged men living in a culture we cannot replicate nor begin to understand, and when we take these 'ideals' literally then attempt to force them onto the rest of the world, we need to be enlightened. It is in the realm of the mind that this war takes place. It is the war for truth and kindness. Words and pictures are the weapons of mass destruction - the destruction of ignorance and hate.

The people of France took to the streets last night, pens in hand and  with signs that said, "We Are Not Afraid." They declared in one voice that they would stand against this war on freedom of speech, freedom of ideas, freedom of opinions. Satire can be truthful, funny, and hurtful.  France has a history of using cartoons to protest and provoke. It is an integral part of their society.

No one should fear losing his/her life for speaking out or for poking fun at anything. When extremists attempt to police the ideas of others, it is time for us to show our solidarity.

"JeSuis Charlie" - I am Charlie. The point of free speech is that they have the right to express themselves. I grew up with the mantra, "I may not agree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." I stand in solidarity with all journalists, cartoonists, and social commentators threatened with violence or attacked by captious fanatics.  They cannot stop us.

By French Ilustrator Lucille Clerc

“I’d rather die on my feet than live on my knees.” –Stephane “Charb” Charbonnier (1967 – 2015), publisher, Charlie Hebdo.

Sports, HUH...GoodGawdY'all

From the age of 7, I've been a huge Pittsburgh Steelers fan. I've watched all of their games religiously, and cheered them through 6 Superbowl victories, and many losses. Loyalty to a team was how I was raised, so I never flip-flopped on my team, no matter where I lived.  This past season in particular, I've really begun to question the cost-benefit of watching professional sports, particularly football, given the effects it has on fans, and its anti-female stance.

When I was growing up, gender roles were much more defined than they are today. Me liking sports placed the 'tomboy' label squarely upon me. At that time, I wore it with pride, as being a 'girly girl' just wasn't something palatable to me. I liked playing football, baseball, being a cheerleader, majorette, etc... athletics were something I loved- challenging my personal best brought me joy.

When my team began to become a major player in the NFL, I was 9. "The Immaculate Reception" in 1972 seemed to kick off a decade of Steelers' victories. It was wonderful. The 80s? Not so much. The 90s saw a resurgence of my team's victories, and in the past decade and a half, they've maintained a relatively good standing overall. But, throughout all of those years, good sportsmanship was the mantra.

I used to smack-talk with friends of other teams, with the understanding that it didn't get taken too far, and that, in the end, the friendship was much more important than a sports game. One Superbowl between the Cowboys and Steelers, my friends who were Dallas fans, were allowed to take up half my living room with their Cowboys decor, while us Steeler fans took the other side. Dallas beat us that year, and yet, not one person on the winning side was a poor winner, and not one of us on the losing side was a poor loser. We had a great time, and talked about that night for years.

Moving to Maryland was a culture-shock, as I experienced the rabidity of fandom at its worst. I've traveled a lot in my life, but I had never come across people who treated others so badly when it came to football. Sportsmanship just doesn't seem to be in the vocabulary of the majority of fans in my adopted home state. My friend Michele pointed out that after the Colts left Baltimore, many fans took on other teams such as mine and the Redskins. In retrospect, I have to admit that I've seen native Baltimore Steelers fans who behave just as badly.. perhaps it's a regional issue- I don't know, but the lack of good sportsmanship is rampant around here. It's even infected family members to the point where I don't want to talk football with them anymore.

Good sportsmanship is realizing that a game is a game. Friendships and familial relationships should be much more important. As Michele also aptly pointed out, kindness is something lacking in many areas of American life these days. I would also add that respect is its missing companion. And, respect for women within this group of franchises is sorely scarce.

49% of the NFL fanbase is female. Yet, the incidents like that with Ray Rice only prove that women are not respected by those who run the league. When we are so completely ignored, why should we support it?  There is no honor when it comes to the almighty dollar, it seems.

I think it's time for me to hang up the jersey and find something more worthwhile to do with my time left here. I'd rather be loving and respectful of others, and know that I am supporting institutions who do the same than to spend a few hours each week in the summer/autumn timeframe engulfed in flame wars and disrespect.

If I am lucky enough to be old and gray and sitting on my front porch reviewing my life, I don't think my football fandom will be something I'll regret giving up, particularly given the climate I'm seeing today.

My Theme for 2015

“The object of a New Year is not that we should have a new year. It is that we should have a new soul and a new nose; new feet, a new backbone, new ears, and new eyes. Unless a particular man made New Year resolutions, he would make no resolutions. Unless a man starts afresh about things, he will certainly do nothing effective. Unless a man starts on the strange assumption that he has never existed before, it is quite certain that he will never exist afterwards.” ― G.K. Chesterton

It's the first day of 2015, and as I sit here writing, I am deep in contemplation over what the last year wrought, and what I want to see happen in this new one. In my last post, I alluded to the fact that 2014 was a challenging  year for me. I'm not going to focus on it, as the year is gone and I'm in a much better place than I was this time last year. Valuable lessons were learned from the experiences of the last two years, and mostly, they were about me not setting and keeping boundaries in my life; particularly when it comes to those closest to me. I lost a lot in learning those lessons, but I gained even more valuable wisdom, and I'm getting better with each test.  .

I'll be 52 in a few weeks. For a lot of people, particularly in western society, it's depressing to get older. For me, it's an honor and a privilege. Not everyone makes it to 52. I'm now, officially, into menopause. This means that I'm very close to the time of "Cronehood". I plan to own this like a boss.

'Crone' is a derogatory term in our youth-oriented society. But, I see it as the containment of power and wisdom. This ties in with the lessons that I've learned in the last year. I'll no longer be leaking or inadvertently giving away my power to others. My children are all old enough to care for themselves. My grandchildren have parents to care for them. It's time for me to begin to focus on what legacy I want to leave behind on a personal level, rather than through the lives I've assisted others in building. Soon, I'll share power and wisdom only at my own discretion- it's a very empowering thought.

My entire life has been spent in the service of family, community and country. Now, I want to focus a year on my own personal relationship with my deithe* and myself. I want to hone the draiocht** within, and to strengthen my mind, body and spirit. I'm going to take my own advice and be my own best friend this year. We're going to do a lot of hanging out together and with the Morrighan. It's time I deepened my relationship with her, as I don't know how many more seasons I have until She meets me to take me to the Otherworld. I'd like her to meet an old friend, rather than a mere acquaintance.

I like the Chesterton quote. The new year always brings the sense of shedding old skin and starting fresh. I'm not going to do resolutions or goals this year. I'm going to go with a theme instead. My theme is going to be "Dauntless."

Dauntless definition: showing fearlessness and determination.
"dauntless bravery"
synonyms: fearless, determined, resolute, indomitable, intrepid, doughty, plucky, spirited, mettlesome.

Here's how I'm going to help myself build this theme:

  • Create a Pinterest board, much like a dream board to help me with my theme. Let me know if you're doing that too. I'd love to see it!

  • The Dauntless Year Jar. I'm taking a jar, decorating it, and putting the dauntless things that I do throughout the year into it. At the end of this year, I'll compile and review them. I think it'll be a great exercise.

  • Blogging: I already started this part. I reinstated my personal blog. It's always helped me to vent, and to write better. 

  • Writing: I'm going to write at least one book this year. 

  • Teaching: I'll be creating at least one class to teach in the Spring via Imramma.

  • Routine: I'm going to establish a scheduled routine for things like meditation, exercise, etc... as a creature of habit, that'll be a huge assist in staying on track.

  • "Me days": I'm taking one day a month to do something special, just for me. No regrets, no guilt, no worries. 

How about you? What's your New Year Theme?

If you need help with that, here's a helpful link to get you started:

* Gaelic term for what most people would call gods/goddesses. The  terms is similar, but different in meaning and does not translate well.

**Gaelic for magic.