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The Garden

growing thoughts and fertilizing ideas

Full Moon Ritual
dandelionlady
and then the children needed to be put to bed.

and then I needed to make herbal concoctions and examine a sore throat.

and then the lamp went out and I needed to find a new lamp for a nightlight.

and then it was dark.  There was no fire laid yet so I needed a flashlight.

and then I couldn't find one.

and then I found 5 and none had batteries and we had no replacements.

and then I found a flashlight that took AA batteries.

and then I almost gave up because it seemed really stupid to make a fire in the dark when my girlfriend was sick and our husbands were gone so I could burn perfectly good alcohol and food and yarn.

and then I went outside anyway feeling like an idiot.

and then I realized that I didn't need a flashlight at all as my night vision kicked in and that was just a waste of time.

and then I had to come back inside for paper to start the fire.

and then I got wine too.  I spilled the wine all over my feet. I decided it was an ancient form of purification.

and then I sang while I started the fire.  I don't remember the song anymore, but I liked it.

and then I noticed Milo the dog guarding me.

and offerings were made, and I opened the gates just as the moon rose.

and I sang and I sang and I sang.

and just after I made the final prayer of sacrifice, a bird sang back like it thought it was dawn.

I pulled a good omen. I wasn't really surprised.

and I talked with a couple of spirits, some that I know and some that I don't.

and I sent out healing, cause I do that.

and after I was done, as the fire was going out, I thanked Milo for guarding me and we walked back to the house.

Interesting idea about the future of Magic
dandelionlady
And the most interesting part of it is that it's written by Alan Moore, who identifies as a magician.  I had no idea!  I loved Promethea though.  

http://glycon.livejournal.com/13888.html

Books I wantses
dandelionlady
I can't find these books on amazon to add to my wish list, so I'm sticking them here so I don't forget them:

Melngailis, Emīlis; Vīķe-Freiberga, Vaira (ed.) (2005) (in Latvian and English). Saules balsi: Latvian Sun Song Melodies. Riga: Karogs. ISBN 9984-505-82-0.OCLC 68609088.
(edit-  oh joy. I found this one, it only costs $150.00.  Used. Sigh.)

Velius, Norbertas. Lithuanian Mythological Tales. Vilnius, 1998. 

---------------------. Lithuanian Etiological Tales and Legends. Vilnius, 1998. 

Vikis-Freibergs, Vaira. �Oral Tradition as Cultural History,� in Linguistics and Poetics of Latvian Folk Songs. Montreal: McGill-Queen�s University Press, pp. 3-14.

Carpenter, Inta Gale. A Latvian Storyteller: The Repertoire of Janis Plavnieks. Arno Press, 1980. 

Jaremko, Christina I. �Baltic Ballads of the �Singing Bone

yay for wasting time on the interwebz. Now back to reading The Early Slavs.  


The Weather in Mel Land
dandelionlady
Is entirely too cold and the winds of change are beginning to be irritating.

Okay, how sad is it that I am procrastinating on my other work by working on my revisions on ADF Structure, Customs, and Whatits?

Sigh.

This is a very busy month. Can I paint yet?

I could regale you all with a list of the crap wonderful things I have to do, but that would be boring for you, dear reader.

I beseech you, continue with your current occupation, and take no notice of my lunatic ramblings.

What I'm working on this month
dandelionlady
 Things are slowly coming along.  I'm working on ADF Structures Customs and Policy.  I'm hoping to get it done by the end of the month, but I'm not swearing any oaths about it.  It doesn't help that Word just ate all my citations. 

I still need to design the cover for Cedarsong's sooper sekrit project,  finish our Lughnasa rite, finish my midsummer ATC (my bad.)  and make the coloring pages I promised to Steph.  I need to submit my workshops to Convocation (Scary!) my art to We'moon (I wish they could just spell it right) oh, and I need to finish something about Structures, Policy and boring rules...

I decided to read Heaven, Heroes, and Happiness despite chronarchy 's warning.  I picked it up off of Amazon for less than $10 including shipping!  How could I resist? I think I may see what he's saying. Winn does seem to have it in for the Indo-Europeans, and I think his logic is flawed, particularly when it comes to the goddesses.  Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, man.  It seems unlikely to me that the indo-Europeans wandered around absorbing all these marvelous matriarchal goddesses and dealt with them all so very similarly.  It seems more possible that the Indo-Europeans already had goddesses when they went wandering around.  However the chapter on "Happiness" or the third function was really interesting to me personally. 

It's funny,  so many people are so very affected by Gimbutiene. (as the Lithuanians call her) I've never read any of her later work, only the early stuff about the Balts.  Most of that seems pretty sane and useful actually. I think you can figure out what kind of pagan someone is just from how they react to her body of work.

Imagine this is a flow chart:

Do you know who Gimbutas was?
No?
then you're an eclectic Wiccan.

Yes?
Do you like her work?
No?
Then you're a Druid or a reconstructionist

Yes?
Do you really really LOVE her work?
No?
Then you're likely in some sort of Wiccan tradition.

Yes?
Then you're in some sort of feminist Wiccan tradition.

I'm too lazy to add in arrows. You'll have to imagine them.


Why yes, I am procrastinating.

3 things
dandelionlady
1) Nyah Cat is the stupidest thing I've ever seen. Of course, my children love it.

2) Remember that whole coming out of the broom closet to my mom-friends thing? Well, be careful what you wish for kiddies, you might just get it. (actually it's gone amazingly well.)

3) Life is getting complicated. (refer back to number 2.)

CTP
dandelionlady
 So I've finally started writing answers.  It's about time.  Desiree will be pleased.  She was starting to give me dirty looks.  I don't want to get in trouble with her.  (She can occasionally be scary...) 

It only took about 4 false starts today.  Children can be pesky.

I is tired now though, and tomorrow I have to go pick more strawberries to turn into wholesome homemade jam n stuff.  

In the news:
The forecast is continuing busyness, with occasional flurries of frenzied activity.  Stay tuned for breaking news of the bribery of children in order to get anything useful done.

Procrastination
dandelionlady
is what I'm doing.  

For the second year running I can't find any evidence on my computer that I wrote a ritual for midsummer.  This is so annoying.  It's like it never existed.  Maybe the fairies stole it.  So I have to start from scratch.  Oh well.  Honestly I need to update our Cedarsong Core Order document, the last time we did it was 2009.  It's outdated.  Just cause I  know you all care, the document is my basis for creating our rituals.  It has all the little bits that we've accumulated over the years that people will get mad at me about if I forget. :)  

It's not the end of the world, there's this paper I found on Fransesca's Wiki page about Lithuanian sun dainos, so that may give me some new fun ideas.  We'll make sure to hook in the healing aspect, that goes over big every year.  Yay for healing!  

It's been a while since I listed the books I'm reading, and since I'm using this as a way to keep track, here goes:

In Search of the Indo-Europeans by Mallory.  Dry, but interesting.
The Celts by Markale. Yes, I started reading it again.  It's not bad, it's slow going though.
The Selected Poems of Anne Sexton  Picked it up at Bargin Books.  I now have 33 books of poetry.  You'd think that would be enough...
Neo Pagan Rites by Issac Bonewits also picked up at Bargin Books.  Now I don't have to steal Jason's copy. :)

And I've started re-reading Strangers In Paradise,  a series of Graphic Novels by Terry Moore.  It's so good.  I loves it.  It suits my mood right now anyway.  Jerry lent it out to Theresa, so it's been sitting around and I couldn't resist its black and white beauty.  Mmm.  The love triangle of Francine, Katchoo, and David is marvelous.  
  

Wellspring
dandelionlady
 Wow.  I don't even know where to start.  It was a wonderful experience.  It's a challenge stepping back into the daily routine.  I'm getting better at the transition,  moving smoothly from festival to daily life.  I had to hit the ground running too.  Sara came by this morning asking me if I could give Melanie a ride to school, (I did)  Ailee's got a field trip tomorrow and field day  and carnival friday, both of which I will be helping with.  I need to finish getting in the vegetable garden in,  Midsummer and the Pagan Picnic rituals need to be written,  submission(s) to Oak Leaves need to be made, and it's the beginning of the fourth moon....


------------As i type, I hear my children at my altar, asking for blessings from the gods.  That's pretty awesome.-----------


-------------Back from dropping Ailee off at school and discussing field trip and carnival.------------

So back to Wellspring.  We got there friday evening, after a few misadventures and a roundabout side trip to Wegmans for brie.  I got the chance that evening to do the Earth Mother offering to Nerthus at the norse rite that evening.  It was the first time I was involved in a ADF festival ritual and I was a little nervous.  It was a good thing I had happened to bring cornmeal for my daily devotionals, because apparently they didn't have anything.  I got down there with my ritual robe, bowl of cornmeal and a folded paper with a pre written invocation, just in case.  But when my moment arrived, it was like diving into water, a smooth transition from one medium of movement to the next, and no need for sweaty little papers. I was happy.

I spent a lot of time just talking to people this weekend, and that was probably the best part.  I've been commited to supporting Cedarsong and the local lansing pagan community for a long time now, but I've had a hard time connecting with ADF on a larger scale.  Talking to so many wonderful people, meeting the artists I've been sending ATC's to, talking to Kathleen and Steph about the children's SIG,  getting to know so many groves and lives.  It was really wonderful.  

I was so excited to participate in the Artists Competition. it was wonderful to win in the 2D category, but it was really overwhelming to win the people's choice award as well.   I was blown away.  Another reason to be so happy.  

Then there was the Slavic Kin meeting, which was completely hilarious.  Hot tubbing at midnight, with pickle shots and toasting to the slavic and baltic gods!  I think I did a good job of representing both,  though I'm more familiar with the Baltic, I've done a fair amount of research on the Slavic.  It was a lot of fun.  Afterward,  I shared a bottle of whiskey and made some new friends.  Good times.  I was declared a "happy drunk" :)

-------------Had to stop typing again, phone call from my mom.------------------

I started losing my voice that day, and the next it was completely gone.  I made a lot of whispered jokes about mimes and stomping horse feet.
Another high point was Missy's workshop.  We don't really have a bard, so Amy and I kind of fake it together.  (I miss you Dell!)  I got some really good ideas for how to improve our music, and got the chance to experience firsthand some amazing bardic healing as I was surrounded by talented men and women who toned and sent healing to my vocal cords.  

There's so much more to write about,  the bardic competion was amazing to witness, the intense experience of watching priests being created and raised to higher levels in a thunderstorm,  and my personal experiences with individuals and with deity.  But my cup of dirty leaf water tea has run dry and the sweet corn needs to be planted.  I will try to journal more later. I know you all want to hear about our adventures with an impromptu appearance in a Memorial Day parade on the way home. :) 



Beltaine
dandelionlady
 Was wonderful!  It's so lovely when a ritual comes together well.  When planning and spontaneity balance together and everyone is working together and on the same page.  Lots of flowers, and lots of singing.  Even some dancing and singing, which is kind of a minor miracle.    I love singing and dancing to "The Earth is my Mother" or whatever the name is.  Everything flowed, we got a wonderful omen, which of course I can't remember all of now.  I'll just have to wait until Amy posts her summary.  I remember Wunjo was the blessing.  Awesome!  When it really flows for me, I often don't remember all of the ritual clearly.  

I absolutely remember helping my youngest bury her poop in the woods.  (that was not the funnest ever)  It was okay though.  It was after the waters were blessed, so I was pretty much done anyway.  Amy was leading a really cool meditation, I'm sad I missed out, but it's okay.  Poop comes first. LOL. Apparently they didn't know where I had gone when I was dealing with defecation,  and there was a moment of the alternate reality where Melissa Does Not Exist.  They continued onward with the thanks and I was able to step back in and help with gate closing and finishing it all off.  Nifty.  My mom came and told me she really enjoyed the service, or rite, or celebration or...  I told her that calling it a service was just fine. :)