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I’ve known very few people who absolutely love cleaning house. I’ll have to admit that once I get started cleaning sometimes I get in the groove, and with music playing in the background it’s almost enjoyable. Almost.

Nurturing the magick in your cottage should go hand in hand with cleansing a house, but a witch has to go beyond cleansing to truly enchant a home. During this retrograde time I realized that I had been putting off a few things that would really improve the magick at Sycamore Hill. It’s been nearly a year since we moved in and my magick room in particular was still a mess. What was worse is that I couldn’t find things. So, long story short, I dove right in. There’s more to do, but that’s more material for future blog posts! 😻

I organized my herbs and incense, and placed them in my painted cabinet. Ok, they aren’t in alphabetical order ….yet. Now I have everything I need in one place to make that Lughnasadh incense!

On top of the herb cabinet I’ve set up a formal altar to honor Cerridwen and Cerrnunos….the Owl and the Stag. No tools on this altar since it’s mainly a place for meditation …. and lovely crystals. Speaking of which, crystals should definitely be a part of every witchy home. I think our home has crystals in nearly every room.

This little cauldron I scored at a local vintage fair. Flea markets and vintage fairs are an excellent source for witchy decorating items and tools. Scan their energy before buying. If there is weird or disturbing energy in the item give it a pass. You probably won’t be able to cleanse away those bad vibes. Even if the energy resonates, be sure to smudge and cleanse the item when you get it home. I’m a regular junk gypsy and have given many lovely items a new magickal home.

On to my witchycraft room….

My mish-mash of craft supplies went on shelves behind some old curtains. I mounted some of those stick on removable hooks on either end of the shelves to hold a curtain rod. This one thing made the whole room easier on the eyes and gave things a more magickal feel.

Above the shelves sits a bathroom cabinet I rescued from the street, cleansed and painted, and now a home for magickal oils.

My working altar is where I will do most of my witchycrafting. I covered the craft table with a nice cloth and tidied things up. Still a lot of stuff there ….but most witches I know have a lot of STUFF. I think cleansing and organizing is the key.

One of the best things about my witchycraft room is the window seat reading nook. I’m ashamed to say I have barely used it. This witch is too busy! But, I cleaned it up, added boho curtains and now it’s very inviting!

And, yes, I do have a thing about mermaids and dragons. Who doesn’t? The merkitty clock above my computer chair was a splurge from when we first moved in. Isn’t she lovely? My husband thinks she’s weird. Go figure!

So far so good. There are still a few more weeks until the end of Mercury retrograde and we will see what other magickal home improvements I can conjure up. Stay tuned….

Has Mercury retro inspired you to do any magickal fix -ups in your enchanted home? Share in the comments. I’d love to hear from you!

Bright Blessings,

Sarina

Crows are said to be able to travel between the planes of existence and be able to deliver messages over space and time.

Here is a way to send a message to someone you have lost touch with. By the way, this time of Mercury retrograde is a great time to make contact with people whose whereabouts is unknown to you. I’m going to try this one to find my long lost cousin in England whose whereabouts I have been unable to find for some time. Haven’t spoken to her in years!

So here goes:

1. Find some seed. A handful will do. It should be organic and non-GMO. I suggest corn. It should be visible enough for the crows to spot it.

2. As you hold the seed in your hands say this charm or write one of your own:

Over space, over time,

Listen now to this rhyme!

Make ______’s presence be known,

By letter or phone.

Crow, deliver this message,

And may you have safe passage.

If you have a special message for the person being sought, state it now.

And so it is!

3. Take the seed to a place where you have seen crows. Scatter it on the ground. Walk away and don’t look back.

I’ll let you know if I find my cousin. Post your results in the comments as well!

Bright Blessings,

Sarina

Crows

I’ve been noticing the crows lately and have been seeing groups of 3 especially. For those of us being visited by crows, here’s a possible meaning:

Meaning of seeing crows:

1 for Sorrow

2 for Mirth

3 for a Wedding

4 for Birth

5 for Rich

6 for Poor

7 for a Witch

I can tell you no more!

🧙🏻‍♀️

Don’t freak out, but Mercury is about to go retrograde. I have to admit that Mercury retrograde periods are not my favorite times of the year. When I mention to my son that there is a Mercury retrograde coming up, he gets very exasperated and says, “When is it NOT Mercury retrograde???” These astrological Mercurial events happen about 3 times a year. Other planets besides Mercury go retrograde but since they are slower moving planets their retrogrades happen less frequently. Mercury has a lot to do with travel and communication which affects many aspects of modern life: cars, machines, technology. You get the picture.

This time around, Mercury goes retro in Leo on July 7, 2019 and stations direct in Cancer around August 1, 2019. If you want to consider the shadow periods before and after the retrograde, we are affected from June 20ish to mid-August.

So, let’s consider the sign of Leo and, if you know your astrological chart, where the retrograde will fall in your chart. Leo is the sign of rulers, dictators and autocrats, but it also rules romance, children and entertainment. Misunderstandings or miscommunication in these areas could manifest during this period. If Leo falls in your second or fifth house especially, I wouldn’t go purchase a new entertainment system. What you might want to do is a lot of thinking and researching and contemplating on the perfect entertainment system for you to purchase AFTER mid August. You might even decide then that your old system is just fine. 😉

In the romance department this could be a great time to contemplate just what it is that you want and need in a love relationship. What we are talking about is soul searching. Meditation and contemplation is Mercury retrograde’s middle name! To be honest, how often do we slow down, take stock and really focus on evaluating where we are heading?

So here is a link to see which house Mercury might be affecting and where you might want to focus your energies of reexamination. https://cafeastrology.com/articles/housesofthehoroscope.html

In your own chart (which you can have done for free on many websites) see which house Leo occupies and the areas of life associated with that house.

Despite the petty annoyances of cars breaking down and text messages and emails going astray, it seems like Mercury Retrogrades do serve a purpose. They force us to slow down and re-examine our lives. And that can be a good thing!

Contemplative Blessings,

Sarina

With the success of my Bealtaine Calendula Salve, I started brewing herbs for an even more healing salve in time for midsummer.

I harvested calendula blossoms, lavender, comfrey leaves, yarrow, rose petals and lemon balm. I dried them for a few days and immersed them in a jar with 20oz. of jojoba oil.

This morning, after about a month of infusing (the oil got pretty dark), I strained the herbs from the oil. Then I added 9Tb of beeswax pellets, and heated the mixture in a double boiler until the beeswax was melted. Next, I added 1tsp. arnica oil (helps prevent bruising) and ladled the mixture into tins.

Making this salve was a good way to capture the healing potential of my garden herbs. Summer Solstice finds herbs at their energetic peak! I think I’ll call this one “Midsummer Boo-Boo Salve”.

For more details on making salves see my post on my Bealtaine Salve

Bright Healing Blessings,

Sarina

🧚‍♀️🧚‍♂️

Our coven celebrated Midsummer on the traditional date of June 23rd. In the old days folks didn’t have an astrological ephemeris to know the exact moment of the summer solstice, so they agreed on the date of June 23rd. Nowadays, many neopagans are into being EXACT, and so follow the ephemeris date for the solstice. Our group is a bit more fluid in our approach to the seasons, feeling there’s more of an orb of energy around a holiday, and so meet when most convenient.

Our Litha celebration took place at Sycamore Hill, and a magickal evening it was! Only four of us witches were there, however, many astral beings showed up as well.

We met up at the Magickal Cottage for crafting. A number of potential wand -sized pieces of wood from various trees were presented: oak, willow, walnut, sycamore, birch and acacia.

We each selected a piece that felt right for creating a magick wand, and then we all hiked down past the hedge to the Oak and Willow Glen.

A circle was cast, we called the quarters and then, with wands in hand, we sat down and prepared for a meditation as we listened to the drumbeat.

In this guided mediation we left our physical bodies and traveled to a “tweeny” place where we met up with our own personal spirit guides. Our guides then took us to the giant oak where we entered a portal in it’s trunk and descended to the underworld. We followed a crystal pathway and saw wondrous sights and spoke with magickal beings. With the help of our spirit guides we chose the path that would lead us to a cast off, unwanted part of a magickal being, such as a dragon scale or a unicorn hair, that would be inserted energetically into our wands. This would serve to enchant our wands and empower them to serve us in our magick.

After finding our items and achieving our goal, we returned with the help of our guides to the physical realm.

On returning, our circle energy felt very mystical. The solar lights had lit themselves while we were “away” and flickered and changed colors.

One by one, we walked the labyrinth just beyond the Fairy Portal, offered some incense, and asked for insights and energy at the stone cairn by the fairy oak.

We returned to the altar, requested healing and safety for family, friends and planet, and raised some energy to send our petitions into the cosmos.

We celebrated the cakes and ale. I had earlier in the day had some fun creating a special “solar cake” for the occasion.

We dismissed the quarters, took down the circle and got in some cardio hiking back up the hill.

We sat around the fire pit and snacked on salad, wine and a midsummer zucchini cake.

May you all be blessed by the solstice energy as we now begin the slow journey to the dark half of the wheel.

Midsummer Blessings,

Sarina 🧚‍♂️

In the Celtic Witan Church we honor the Coligny Calendar of the ancient Celts. Here is info on the Coligny Calendar

This month of June we based our full moon ritual on Horse Time Moon. Up until relatively recently in human history the horse was valued for its use in human survival. It was an important mode of transportation as well as a crucial partner in daily work. A horse was considered a prized possession, and buying, selling and trading of horses was often done at markets and fairs at this time of year.

Several of our covens have adapted this time to holding a market where we barter and trade personal items amongst our group members. This is always a lot of fun, and over the years some items get passed back and forth between coveners as an inside joke. We always look forward to this traders’ market each year!

This year after casting the circle and calling the quarters and center, we participated in a guided meditation. We envisioned ourselves upon our horses (mine was a white mare) traveling across fields and through forests to the meeting place where our ancient Celtic market was taking place.

The tables were laden with baskets of wares we had brought to trade. So many tempting items!

The trades were made and all acquired new treasures to take home. We returned to our seats and ended the enchanted meditation with our horses returning us back home.

This full moon during the time of Fire was a great time to observe all the summery things that bombarded our senses: kids shouting at a birthday party, premature fireworks explosions, warmer temperatures and the verdant circle of greenery.

We raised some energy for those that needed it and released it to the universe. Then we partook of cakes and ale.

The ritual was closed, the quarters and center thanked and dismissed and the circle released. We sat around and snacked as we did a few tarot readings: an enjoyable evening, indeed!

I hope you are able to take some time to observe and honor the full moon in your own way. Maybe charge some crystals or send energy to friends and family?

A blessed Horse Time Moon to you all!

High Priestess Sarina 🌝

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As you wind your way up the path to the Magickal Cottage, knock on the door, for you are most welcome! The kettle is about to boil and I’ll brew us some tea so we can sit and discuss how to create a magickal life. Merry Meet!

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