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Archive for June, 2014

From ghoulies and ghosties
And long-leggedy beasties
And things that go bump in the night,
Good Lord, deliver us!

Traditional Scottish Prayer

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Next week  I will be doing a space clearing on a family member’s home. It seems there has been some paranormal activity there, and the house owners would like it to stop. It’s scary. I suspect there is some energy attached to an old Victorian chair they brought into the house a few months ago. I’ll be able to tell better when I get there and monitor the energy on the house.

Monitoring the energy around ourselves and in our environment is so important. We can start feeling unmotivated, fearful, angry and even ill when our environmental energy is out of whack. We all know people who drain us, the so-called “energy vampires”; but astral energies can attach themselves to us and tax our energy fields as well. What I am saying is not meant to strike terror in anyone’s heart. It happens all the time in various degrees. Usually these astral entities are lower energies, meaning low vibrational as opposed to “evil”. More common ones aren’t demons or ghosts. Some may be elementals – the more mischievous ones- but I suspect elementals prefer to be left alone most of the time.

So let’s talk about how to recognize when one of these entities is affecting you and what to do about it if you decide you have picked up an astral hitchhiker. It’s apparently not that hard for those on the astral plan to figure out how to enter or interface with our 3D plane. The elementals in charge of making the plant kingdom grow do it all the time. Sometimes spirits or entities just pass through for a time. Around Samhain and Beltaine the veil between our planes is much thinner. Playful imps like to join in the fun and can be seen a lot more in digital photos as orbs. The following pictures of me were taken at Halloween time at two different times in consecutive years in the same place. On the right side of me in both pics you can see a large orb in the picture. It was a fun and playful occasion, and the seasonal spirits were joining in on our fun! I felt no negative effects from the orb friends and they soon moved on.  They may have been “feeding” off our fun or simply attracted to it.

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If you feel that something is affecting you that is not in your best interests, then there are steps you can take. How do you know if there is something undesirable around you? Go by your gut feelings – your intuition. Everybody has it! If you feel you are constantly being watched in your house, how does it make you feel? Do you feel threatened? When I was a youngster I felt people in spirit around me quite a lot. Because I didn’t understand that there could be people in spirit who might be watching over me, I got the creeps. In fact, I was terrified. It was a long time before I was able to acknowledge my friends and family on the other side and be open to their messages.

So if you have ruled out the presence of helpful spirits, then ask yourself a few more questions. Could there be other explanations for your bad luck, ill health or depressed outlook? Sometimes bad stuff just happens, but we have control over how we react to those bad things. Do some meditating and self examination and be honest with yourself. Your own emotions can be very powerful indeed for good or bad! Poltergeist activity is an example of how live people can cause paranormal activity in a location. In studies of homes where poltergeist activity (things moving, doors and cupboards opening and slamming shut) has been experienced, there have been observations that this activity is actually tied to someone living in the household. Frequently this someone is an adolescent with some really repressed, heavy duty ANGER. Often no one suspects that these kids were going through such hell, but their anger has to come out somehow. Things can go flying, and break, and make lots of noise, sort of like what happens when someone throws a temper tantrum.

If you can rule out a human cause to the entity attachment, then there are steps to be taken. These steps are a good idea to follow periodically even when everything seems ducky. Just consider this procedure to be a form of magickal housekeeping. Follow the steps below in the order given and you should be good to go. Do this space clearing once or twice a year, or more often if you feel the need.

1. Clean up your stuff! Clear clutter, throw things away and air the place out. Scrub each room from top to bottom being careful to avoid harsh chemicals. Vinegar and baking soda as well  as lemon juice and tea tree oil mixed with water will clean things both physically and energetically. DON”T SKIP THIS STEP! I know cleaning can be boring, but low energies are attracted to staleness and grime. A messy place can bring your energy down without you realizing it, and you will be more attractive to those astral low lifes. When you are done cleaning your place, go jump in the tub or the shower. Wash yourself, including your hair and scrub under your nails. Put on clean clothes, which you should have plenty of because you did the laundry when you were cleaning, right?

2. Open the doors and windows. Find something for making NOISE, like cymbals, gongs, rattles or even a pot and a wooden spoon to hit the pot. Go to each corner of each room and to all the tight little spaces and cubby holes and make a racket with your noise maker. You are breaking up energy so it can leave your home. Cats are wonderful at breaking up stale energy. Ever notice how they like to crawl into small spaces and just park themselves there for awhile? A cat’s purr actually vibrates at a healing frequency. Cats are feng shuy experts, so allow them to chill in any out of the way safe place. Your home’s energy will benefit from a feline’s presence!

3. Next you will want to smudge. It helps to have another person help you with this part. You can use white sage, sweetgrass or even incense, but you will  be taking the smoke from the smudge and walking through the house. Be sure to have a heat proof container with you to catch any falling embers. You don’t want to start a fire. Expose all the spaces with this cleansing smudge smoke repeating the following out loud: ” All that is not for the highest good and well being of me and my family must leave now! Only the good remains!” Say it like you mean it.

4. Step outside and have your friend smudge you with the smoke. Have them do the front and back of you, under your arms, all over. As they smudge you say: “What’s mine is mine! No other energies are invited into my energy field without my permission! I ask for clearing,  blessings and protection from all my spiritual guardians. As above so below. It is done! Thank you”

5. The last step is to bring beneficial energies into your space. You have created a sort of vacuum by clearing out your home, and a vacuum by nature wants to fill itself up again. Call in high energy to take the place of the low energy. Burn a white candle that you have dressed with a blessing oil. Frankincense, myrrh and sandalwood incense also attract higher energies. I love using palo santo, which is a type of fragrant wood that comes in little sticks and burned to attract good energy. I love the way it smells when it is burning!

By now you should be feeling much better, and your space should look and feel amazing! The key word now is MONITOR. Monitor your energy and the energies around you to discern when you might need to do another space clearing. And keep your vibration high! Emotions like anger, fear, guilt and hatred make you a magnet for lower energies who love to “feed” off your negative emotional banquet. It’s best to nip these feelings in the bud before you send out a beacon to invite these unwanted guests into your personal space. Shield yourself from negative people, places and situations.  And remember: for good or bad, your thoughts are things! You create your life.

Blessings,

Sarina

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 It’s Midsummer’s Eve at the Magickal Cottage and I am planning my evening celebration. Even though it’s just me and the furrbabies, we will make an evening of it! As you might guess, I am a green witch and love to work with the plant kingdom and the fae whose energy supports all of nature. Aine, the Fairy Queen is my goddess of choice to honor at Midsummer…..and all through the year, for that matter. She is represented by Titania in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. I don’t see her in exactly the same light as Shakespeare did. She seems more earthy and no-nonsense to me. She also seems smarter. Some say she was the Lady of the Lake of King Arthur’s story. I say she holds the plant kingdom together, and she makes a wonderful gardening companion!

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At dusk I will be lighting a fire in the firepit. The solar energy ties into fire energy, and lighting a fire to celebrate this evening is traditional. The bonfires that are traditional in countries where it is instead St. John the Baptist Day at this time, are lit to ward off evil. Effigies of witches are burned in some countries. Imagine!

It’s funny, I have lived in this house for a little over a year. The hill in back of our yard gave off some “different” energy from the moment we moved in. I wasn’t sure what to make of this energy. Was it the ground squirrels?? The dead tree?? I normally don’t get spooked much anymore, especially when I am out in nature. But it was hard to be out in the backyard at night…until recently. I am hoping I have made peace with what elementals were watching me. I  planted loads of fairy flowers this past year. I fed the birds and made compost.  I even made some fairy gardens in flower pots, with tiny furniture for them to sit on. They probably thought that was pretty hilarious! But, I was a pretty good caretaker, if I do say so. I’m hoping tonight they will be happy to be honored by my offerings. Since it’s still Mercury retrograde, I won’t be doing a lot of magickal workings this evening….just honoring and givings thanks. That’s fine. I hope to build a better relationship with the elementals this year and petition their help in my future magickal workings.

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So, I’ll light the balefire at sundown and munch on some Lemon Lavender Scones:

INGREDIENTS:
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup lemon yogurt
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for
kneading
1/3 cup white sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 cup cold butter, cut into cubes
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 egg, beaten
1 1/2 teaspoons lavender flowers
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon butter, melted, or as needed
1 teaspoon white sugar, or as needed
DIRECTIONS:
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
2. Stir baking soda and yogurt together in a bowl.
3. Sift flour, 1/3 cup sugar, and baking powder together in a bowl. Cut cold butter into flour mixture using a pastry cutter or two forks until mixture is crumbly.
4. Mix yogurt mixture, 2 tablespoons melted butter, egg, lavender, and lemon zest in a separate bowl. Stir yogurt-lavender mixture into flour mixture until just moistened.
5. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead 8 to 10 times, adding more flour if dough is too sticky.
6. Divide dough into 2 pieces and place on an ungreased baking sheet. Pat and shape each piece into a 6-inch circle. Score each circle into 6 wedges using a sharp floured knife. Brush tops with 1 tablespoon melted butter; sprinkle with 1 teaspoon white sugar.
7. Bake in the preheated oven until scones are just golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from oven, break into wedges, and cool on a wire rack.

And  I’ll sip on some summery sangria. Of course, I will share with the Fairy Queen and her court!

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I wish you all a Blessed Midsummer!

Sarina

 

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As you can see from the photo, we are enjoying some sunny days in the magickal garden. Sonya is in one of her favorite spots near the catnip patch. The bees love the blossoms so much, I haven’t the heart to cut the plant back!

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The first tomato has started to turn red, and soon I will be drowning in tomatoes….which is OK!! The beans are climbing up the bean poles and summer’s bounty is about to arrive! 

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I’m sure you are aware that herbs have magickal properties, but did you know that foods do as well? According to Witchipedia (love that name! hahaha) http://www.witchipedia.com/herb:tomato:

Tomatoes are associated with Venus and with Aphrodite and Hera. This plant is feminine in nature.

The presence of a tomato help protect from negative influences. Putting one on the window sill will prevent evil from entering the house.

Eating the fruit inspires love and passion. It is a good addition to romantic dinners and also good to eat to inspire creativity.

A much anticipated summer treat, tomatoes are suitable offerings for first harvest festivals and are especially suitable for Native American deities.

Although the flavor is completely different, tomatoes can be used in place of apples in many magical spells. They can also be used in place of other members of the nightshade family.

 

Click on the tab at the top of this page to visit the magickal garden and see what else we are growing. I have listed the magickal properties for some of my herbs. 

 

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Schatzi in the shade of the artichoke plant.

 

 

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Countering the Effects of Mercury Retrograde, 6/7- 7/2, 2014.

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Yes, it’s Mercury retrograde again, and the full moon just passed. Sometimes we get started on a downward spiral of thinking, “what else could go wrong?”…and then something does go wrong! I took it upon myself recently to find out all I could about countering the effects of the infamous Mercury Retrograde that hits us about 3 times a year. Honestly, sometimes people get to the point during these planetary events where they are afraid to step foot out the door!

I think that fear is our worst enemy in these cases. By the Law of Attraction we are probably doing more to bring about calamity in our lives than Mercury ever could. Mercury rules communication and movement in general, such as transportation. When a retrograde happens the influence of Mercury is lessened. Think of Mercury as being the one in control of these areas of life, and that ole’ Merc has gone on an extended coffee break. It’s like when the teacher steps out of the classroom for a minute. Some of the kids in the classroom will behave and some will not. So during a retrograde, some things will go pretty much ok or even great, and other things will “act up”. It’s unpredictable. Just rememeber, though, that  you are in charge of what your own energy and thoughts produce.

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One very useful way to counter the effects of Mercury Retrograde is to raise your personal vibration to a higher level. Higher vibrations=attracting good things to your life; and lower vibrations=attracting the things you probably don’t want. My garden is an endless source of wonderful positive energy. I have been gardening for years, and I never realized what a gorgeous flower an artichoke could become! When I saw the beautiful flower, pictured above, the other day, my energy vibration shot way up! When I got some bad news about a family member, though, my energy plummeted. It pays to be aware of what your energy is doing. Sure, we can’t be Pollyannas and ignore all the problems of life, but we can monitor our energy and make sure to do plenty to keep our vibration as high as possible.

It might be best to avoid the evening news during these stressful times. Watch an old movie that is just heartwarming, and snuggle with your family and animal friends. “Life really IS good”. That should be our mantra during a retrograde. And remember….this, too, shall pass!

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Blessings,

Sarina

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Not only is the full moon an excellent time to charge crystals (and yourself!) in the moonlight, it is also a great time to perform a burning bowl ceremony! This is a time to rid yourself of those things you are willing to give up once and for all. If you are truly motivated, then read on!

 

This month the full moon is exact on June 12 at 9:11 PM, PDT. It will be in the sign Sagitarrius. This is an excellent time to rid yourself of issues involving: Carelessness, self-righteousness, making assumptions, excesses, extravagance, bluntness, pain or disease of the hips, liver, sciatica

 

 Here’s what you do:

 

Supplies: pieces of paper, pencil, heat proof container to burn pieces of paper, matches, water (just in case!)

 

1.      Write down what you would like to get rid of on a small piece of paper. Sign and date    the paper.

 

2.       Read what you have written aloud.

Example:” I now rid myself of the habit of making too many assumptions.”

 

3.       Light the paper and place it in the heatproof container.

 

4.       Visualize your “problem” going up in smoke!

 

If you wish you may call upon Archangel Raguel, the sociable peacekeeper, to be present and assist you. I like the helpful energy that angels lend and they are NOT restricted to any religion. There are certain archangels that traditionally correspond to the four elements. You can also set the scene with the following elements:Fire (candles, firepits), colors- purple, pale blue and deep blue; herbs, oils, incense – bergamot, clove and rosemary:  Be creative! Have fun!

 

Blessings,

Sarina

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I love summer….now that I’m back in California. In Texas I didn’t love it so much. The humidity and insects could be oppressive in Texas, but the worst part of Texas summer was the fact that many of the flowers and veggies I planted in spring would curl up and die as soon as the hot summer weather arrived. 

At the Magickal Cottage here in Crow Hollow, summer is a time when Mother Gaia showers us with gifts of gorgeous flowers and delicious, nourishing fruits and veggies. Summer is the time of the fire element. Think of the energy and exuberance of fire! That is summer. 

The Summer Solstice will be coming up in about a week. I am working on a plan to celebrate this time with ritual around the fire pit and a celebration of the bounty and fun of summer. In the life cycle of the year, spring is the young child, summer is the teenager and young adult, autumn is the middle aged person, and winter the elderly.

I hope you can kick off your shoes, walk barefoot in the grass and enjoy this time of year like a teenager!  Savor the firey energy of summer and feel happy to be alive!

Blessings,

Sarina

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