August 26, 2008


About 2 weeks ago, the tree in our front yard started to blossom:

Every day, whenever we leave the house or return, hundreds of little white petals float through the air and swirl all around us. It’s rather like a fantasy, reminds me of that 80’s movie with Tom Cruise and Mia Sara– remember Legend? And for the first half hour of the movie, wherever they went, little flower petals were magically wafting through the air, dancing in the sunbeams…

Yeah, it’s kinda been like that around here…

August 19, 2008

SPC~ Get Your Shine On #3

In the late afternoon/early evening, the sun shines directly in through my kitchen window, reflecting off the floor, the walls and even the refrigerator, making the entire room glow.

And as of this past weekend, the sun has a brand-new fridge to light up…

Our old fridge had been making the most horrible squealing noise off and on for at least the past six months or so. It would squeal and grind for a couple of hours and we’d beg it to hang in there for a while longer– refrigerators are expensive!– and it would stop squealing eventually and continue to run just fine.

Until this past week. It became clear that our fridge was gasping its last breath. It would only stop squealing if I came over and gave it a good solid thump; 30 seconds later, it would begin again. Our fridge was so ancient, we couldn’t even find parts for our particular model so that we could try to fix it.

So we spent 2 days pricing refrigerators at the home improvement and scratch-and-dent discount appliance stores. This is the one we ended up choosing. And since the plumber was at our house this weekend doing work for us anyway, we decided to ask just how difficult it would be to have a hook-up installed in the kitchen for an ice-maker in the new fridge. Not difficult at all, says he.

And so, for the first time ever in my life, I not only have a shiny NEW refrigerator, I also have an automatic ice maker. So luxurious! I feel extremely pampered.

To see more interpretations on the theme “Get Your Shine On” visit this week’s Self-Portrait Challenge.

August 17, 2008

Currently Reading~ To the Tower Born

A book about the two lost princes of York, a sad and still unsolved mystery which made possible the chain of events which led to the beginning of the Tudor era. The only other historical fiction novel I’ve read so far that has explored this mystery is The Sunne In Splendour: A Novel of Richard III by Sharon Kay Penman, so I was very interested to find another one with a new theory on what could have happened to the young nephews of Richard III.

From the back cover:

To The Tower Born: A Novel of the Lost Princes by Robin Maxwell

In 1483, Edward and Richard of York– Edward, by law, already King of England– were placed for their protection before Edward’s coronation, in the Tower of London by their uncle Richard. Within months the boys disappeared without a trace, and for the next five hundred years the despised Richard III was suspected of their heartless murders.

In To The Tower Born, Robin Maxwell ingeniously imagines what might have happened to the missing princes. The great and terrible events that shaped a kingdom are viewed through the eyes of a quick-witted Nell Caxton, only daughter of the first English printer, and her dearest friend, “Bessie,” sister to the lost boys and ultimate founder of the Tudor dynasty. It is a thrilling story brimming with mystery, color, and historical lore. With great bravery and heart, two friends navigate a dark and treacherous medieval landscape rendered more perilous by the era’s scheming, ambitious, even murderous, men and women who will stop at nothing to possess the throne.

August 11, 2008

Festival the Second


  • Teaching workshops! This is definitely #1 on my list of favorite things this year; I really, really enjoy teaching workshops. Amaset and I taught 2 together, and both of them went wonderfully well and were quite well attended, with lots of positive feedback.
  • Working Gate on opening morning. Even though it was 3 hours of standing and walking out in the hot sun, it was tons of fun going from car to car, welcoming people to festival and checking them in and giving them their ID bands and other stuff. Everyone is so friendly and excited to be there; it’s a great way to meet people and a great way to run into friends, as well.
  • Grounding and Centering people at the Drawing Down. I was on staff as Lieutenant for the the Centering Plaza again this year, and CP’s biggest responsibility at festival is comforting, grounding and centering people after they visit with Deity at the Drawing Down ritual on Friday night. Many people are pretty emotional afterwards, so we provide some TLC, whether it’s hugs, talking, energy work or bringing them a little bit of snack food and drink, each person has someone stay with them until they feel calm and centered again. It was a real honor to do this work and I really enjoyed it.
  • Seeing old friends and making new ones. Always fun to catch up on life and hang out. Never know who you’re gonna see, what you’re gonna do together or what you’re gonna end up talking about.
  • My tent. My tent rocks, that’s all there is to it. It’s big enough that it’s rather a pain to set up alone, but still doable, it just takes me a while. Wind storm Tuesday night? My tent did not budge one inch, I had it so tightly staked down. Absolute deluge of rain most of Wednesday night? I was high and dry, snug as a bug in a rug. Room for my “princess bed” (camp cot with futon mattress), a camp chair, and even a little altar inside. I camp in style. Heck, I’m there for nigh onto a week, why shouldn’t I be somewhat comfortable?
  • The lake, the stars, the moon, the mountains. My camp site was lovely, set up off the road, surrounded by pines, view of the lake through the trees in front of me, view of the Castle Rock behind me. Watched the quarter moon go down behind the Castle Rock at night. Stars as bright as diamonds. Made sure I swam in the lake at least once while I was at fest.
  • Falling asleep to the sound of drumming. Always one of my favorite things.


  • Drama with a ripple effect. Felt bad for those directly involved. I was caught in the ripple. ‘Nuff said.
  • Being in lots of pain. Missed out on some activities I really wanted to go to, plus ended up leaving fest a day early. However, being able to take a real shower and sleep in a real bed and spend all day Sunday with Firehand kinda made up for having to leave early.

August 1, 2008

A Dry Lughnasadh

Sweet, sweet, sweet,
Is the wind’s song,
Astir in the rippled wheat
All day long.

~ Ellen M. H. Cortissoz (1833-1933)

Blessings of the First Harvest to you!

The dog days of summer are here in the Denver area for real. The temperatures have been in the mid-to-upper nineties for the past three weeks straight, and today and tomorrow’s highs are predicted to be over 100*F. All the juicy, lush vegetation of May is withering in the merciless heat, even regular watering can’t keep the lawn green or the ground in my garden from becoming hard and cracked.

The dry conditions put me in mind of the theme of sacrifice at Lughnasadh; the willing sacrifice of the Corn King, of John Barleycorn and other deity archetypes who give their life energy to the grain in the fields, so that the seeds will germinate when they are planted the next spring. What might you willingly sacrifice this Lughnasadh, so that you may bloom again in the spring?