Friday, May 31, 2013

Book Recommendation--"Kids Who See Ghosts"

As it was my last Friday of freedom before school starts again in the fall, I treated myself to an over-priced coffee beverage and a visit to one of my favorite occult bookstores to load up on enough incense and pagan whatnot to see me through the crazy months of summer.  While there, I came across a book, "Kids Who See Ghosts: How To Guide Them Through Fear" by Caron B. Goode EdD, NCC.  I didn't purchase a copy, though in hindsight I wish I had. 

More and more often I am meeting women whose children have ghostly visitors and I have to admit I am grateful that mine do not (or at least, not that they've told me).  As much as I really enjoy hearing the stories these women tell of the experiences they've had with their children seeing ghosts, I'm not sure I would handle it well--not because the ghosts frighten me, but because I can't protect my children from the unknown if I can't see what they see. 

While the title offers "how to guide [your children] through fear," I suspect it is the parents (like myself) who really need the guidance, and from the reviews I've read this book addresses parents' fears as well.  Learning how to respect what your children say they are seeing and not assume it is simply the work of an active imagination is something all parents need to work on, even those of us with relatively open minds. 

If you've read this book, or even have experience in this matter, I'd love to hear your opinion.
Kids Who See Ghosts at

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Discount Paganism

Practicing paganism should not be expensive.  Sure you need supplies--incense, candles, chalk, salt...I could go on and on.  If you are practicing High Magick, then yes, you'll probably want to shell out for that silver athame and goblet, but basic paganism and natural magic in particular, should be next to free.  That's tough for me to say, because Goddess knows I do love to shop, but you don't really HAVE to use that thrice-blessed and anointed wish candle from your local occult shop.  Personally I find that the items you cleanse and bless yourself give more *umph* to your spellwork.  Remember, a good spell is mostly about intent and focus.  If shelling out a bundle helps you focus on your goal then far be it for me to talk you out of it.  For the rest of us however, here are some money-saving spots for basic altar supplies:

2013-04-09 15.11.17Your yard--if you are lucky enough to have space for a garden, or even potted plants, many of your herbal supplies become next to free.  If you don't garden, basic garden herbs like rosemary, mint, sage and thyme, tend to grow like crazy when happy and their owners are usually more than happy to let you come take their trimmings away.
Walmart--While I dislike going to Walmart on principle, most of your basic supplies can be found here, and if you are doing candle magic on a budget, they have a wide variety of inexpensive colored candles. 

Dollar Stores--Sometimes I get lucky with candles and seasonal items here.
Local grocery--Obviously you can get salt here--for crafting I prefer uniodized salt, but that's about as fancy as I get.  For basic spell-work, an all-purpose incense like sandalwood will do.  You can find this at most grocery stores these days.  I have to admit though, I tend to splurge on my incense since I have to smell it for the rest of the day after use.
Seconds stores-- if you are lucky enough to have a good seconds store nearby (like TJ Maxx, DFO or Tuesday Morning) you can usually find almost everything you need to accessorize your altar.  Many of my favorite pagan decorating purchases came from Marshalls.  Especially after Samhain and Yule, they practically give cool stuff away!
Yard sales--I love the second-hand cauldron I rescued a few months back.  Yard sales involve a lot more time and effort, but they are generally worth it since the items you get tend to have more personality.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Magic of Lilies

This morning I noticed that my Easter lilies have finally decided to bloom.  I have a fairly prosperous patch of them, descended from a sad, leggy potted lily given to me by my mother-in-law (I really should thank her again).  Apparently they are quite happy where I've planted them for now they have spread out over six feet of flower bed.

In the language of flowers, the lily can represent fertility, renewal and abundance.   Alternately, the lily, which is toxic if ingested, shows its teeth in spells of protection or to break love spells.  The velvety white Easter lily brings the correspondences of the color white to your spell craft.  Though we associate it with innocence and cleansing, white is a color of power for it contains all of the colors.  Consequently, the Easter Lily makes an excellent altar offering for spells of all kinds.  Just remember folks, all parts are poisonous.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

A Walk in the Garden--Beltane

My garden and I have a love/hate relationship most of the time, so I tend to forget to appreciate the simple gifts it gives.  But springtime is here and the garden is being kind to me (for now anyway), and what better time to enjoy it than Beltane?  Today I've decided to take a walk in the garden with my camera and really LOOK at the Beltane show.
The herbs have gone crazy with this nice wet April we've had--the oregano is about to bolt, and I suspect the sage is not far behind.
 I planted some random Home Depot cherry tomatoes early this spring--got to remember to lay off the Epsom salts next time.  Too much foliage, not enough fruit.  The calendula and alyssum seem to be happy though.
I've been waiting on these Easter lilies all season!  I was sort of hoping they would decide to be Beltane lilies, but whenever they do finally open they will be quite a show!
 Aha!  There's the little guy who's been snacking away on my dill!  Usually they go for the fennel. Honestly, I've been afraid to harvest any more, lest I disturb (or goddess forbid, eat) any baby swallowtails. 
 The beginnings of a moonflower vine which will take over the porch rails by autumn.  Something to look forward to.
 Perhaps the beginning of a fairy circle?  Hmmm....
 My oxalis doing it's best to cover for waning daffodils.  I totally forgot that I had planted that chrysanthemum there after the autumn show.  What a pleasant surprise.
 My butterfly iris is going to town with all this moisture.  You go girls!  The poppies in the background are a reseed from a pack I planted seven or eight years ago.  They just keep coming back and who am I to stop them?
Last year I planted a white version of purple coneflower which I thought had gone on to that great garden in the sky.  Yet here it is poking up through the impatiens in the moon garden.  I'm thrilled that it didn't go into the light.

Seriously, I could do this all day, but what I really should be doing is getting off my rear and heading back out into the garden on this lovely May Day.  Blessed Beltane to all!