Friday, January 30, 2009

eating the angel way... part seven

UPDATE - my cpu is blown...sigh. the nice man came today and carried off the smoking shell, alas. hopefully i will be up and running MONDAY - there's just FIFTEEN more posts til #600!!!! thank you all so much for your patience!!!! :)

Thursday, January 29, 2009

im speaking at passiflora!

passiflora tea shoppe in new hartford, ct, that is. tonight, at 7 PM... my talk is free and the topic will be ... Eating... the Angel Way! please come join me if you can!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

snuggly snow day

i didn't do a whole lot of writing - unless you count blogging and commenting on others' blogs. to everyone who's been leaving me such wonderful comments and to all my new followers, i promise to visit and comment back AND get your buttons!!!! as soon as i can!!! meanwhile, please bear with me!

i didn't do much of anything today... mostly snuggled up with libby on the couch either watching season one of "gilmore girls" or reading her Wuthering Heights. at some point i negotiated help with laundry and other chores, so that even though i had the laziest laid back day imaginable, i still managed to get three loads of laundry done, a pot roast cooked, bread pudding baked, and my writing room cleaned and cleansed in preparation for a SERIOUS writing day tomorrow. and preparation for my talk at passiflora in new hartford - i have NO idea what's going on with their website!!! i'll be asking the goddesses about it tomorrow for sure!!

so thank you so much to all my gentle readers who have made me feel so loved with all your wonderful comments!!! sleep tight!!!

update on superawesome giveaway - post #582

you have until post 599 to leave a comment for one entry, become a follower for an additional entry, grab my button for an additional three entries and blog about the giveaway for an additional three entries. refer others and receive additional entries, as well!

the winner will be chosenly randomly - however, the person who got the most entries will ALSO receive a prize as well, because i found it just too difficult to limit myself to 13 Essential Things to get through a long cold winter. the list just kept growing!!!

so what's in the giveaway goodie pile so far??

here's a partial list... hand and foot lotion by aveda... a two-cd, one dvd boxed set of loreena mckennit's "nights at the alhambra,"...a sweet selection of summer-scented candles by crystal river candles...a calming flower essence by my dear sister-in-spirit laura... a hot warming tea and a purifying face mud by my sagewise-hardass-green goddess friend rose... a dream journal... fuzzy socks... organic hot chocolate by green & black... lavender bath salts...and a couple more yummy things i've still got my eye on!!!

so leave me some comment love and spread the word... there's just a week or so left to play!

snow day - a wordful wednesday post

the point of word-full wednesday - a riff on the wordless wednesday some bloggers participate in - is to post a photo and then write about it as much as you want. i saw this over on tutu's bliss, and thought it was such a cute idea i'd try it here. she led me to another site from whom i grabbed this great button:

so stop on over and leave them some comment love, and maybe even try one yourself!!! :)

as you can see from the above photo, the woods may indeed be snowy dark and deep here in the wilds of new england, but fortunately i don't have to go anywhere today. nowhere at all... and after the last two days' whirlwind of activity, it feels good to have nothing to do. i wanted to write in the worst way last night - i haven't had a chance to do more than move my notes from one side of the computer to the other - but i was just too tired. my brain refused to function, like an old computer refusing to boot up.

so today, i get to stay home and look at this. the snow's predicted to fall throughout the day, and as the weatherman announced with such devilish glee, it's only going to get worse. i've a candle for my children - well, everyone's children, really - who may have to venture out in this weather, that they find their way safely.

i have a roast in the fridge - i'm planning on baking cookies later, and making yorkshire pudding with roast, because i didn't make it last time. i'm itching to go back to writing - the friend who went to hawaii took 130 pages with her. in anticipation of her return three weeks from now, i hope to have at least a rough final draft completed.

i am so grateful for this snow day!

eating the angel way - part six

so what the f@$#k is "white food?"

i won't bore you with how long it took me to understand. that day, when i stuck my head in the refrigerator, and heard "white food" i suddenly saw a carton of french vanilla yogurt in front of me that i would've sworn hadn't been there when i opened the door. yogurt, of course, isn't only the ONLY "white food." it just happens to be one i really like and find most agreeable. i like to think it's a legacy of my days as a mongolian warlord. (and judy, it's not possible to be allergic to "white" foods in the sense the Angels use it.)

according to the Angels, "white foods" are complete protein foods. like white light which contains all colors of the spectrum, "white" foods contain the raw materials necessary for the body to manufacture and maintain all of its components. muscles, nerves, blood, and bone are all created by the body out of amino acids.... the kind you find in complete proteins. so "white" foods include not just eggs and yogurt, beef, fish, or poultry, they also include the various vegetarian combinations of grains and veggies that make up complete proteins. rice-and-beans are every bit as much a "white food" as chicken.

my journey to understand this message was a process over many months. in retrospect, it's a good thing the Angels began with that one small piece of information, because at first i took it literally, as many of my gentle readers did, and figured it meant i was supposed to exist on a diet of yogurt, eggs, and bananas. as you can imagine, that got boring, quickly. and so one day i found myself staring back into the fridge, asking... "isn't there anything else?"

and furthermore, the war WILL end. blessed be.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

eating the angel way.. part five

it's been my experience that the Angels don't answer unless you ask. and then, the Answer is frequently so self-evident that it almost seems as if that couldn't possibly be the answer because it's been staring you in the face all along. or the Answer only comes as part of the Answer and so you hesitate, waiting to know what will happen after that.

but it's also been my experience that the Angels frequently give you only little pieces of an Answer at a time, pieces you can safely handle, like baby-spoon size bites, until They see you can handle the rest.

the limitations of human intelligence to comprehend the Divine are greater than we can begin to imagine. but most of us forget that, so entrenched into this flesh we have allowed ourselves to become.

and so, when i heard the Voice say with crystalline clarity... "White food," in answer to my question... "come on, Angels, Guides and Anyone Who Might Be Listening, please tell me what the f$#k im supposed to eat?" my utterly human response was: "and what else?"

and furthermore, the war WILL end. blessed be.

eating the angel way .. part 4

my search for a food plan i could live with didn't happen in a vaccum, of course. at the same time, i had embarked on a deeply spiritual journey, one that was enabling me not only to embrace the gifts i'd so long denied, but also to hear the self-sabotaging messages i was giving myself.

i realized that day after day, week after week, of forgetting to eat, of denying my body its critical nourishment, and then stuffing it with whatever i had closest at hand, was basically telling myself that i was supposed to come last. my needs didn't matter. my nourishment - physical, emotional, intellectual or spiritual - didn't count. it could come dead last, after i had done my best to meet the needs of everyone around me.

the same self-sabotaging voice disparaged my writing, telling me that my books were silly, they didn't matter, and who'd want to read them anyway? the more i thought about all the insidious ways i had found to damage myself, the more i realized how hard, how cruel, even i really was to myself.

i was as ruthless and relentless as my own worst villians. to me.

and so, the long work of healing began. i began to sit with the Child, the Maiden, the Young Woman who was me. i began to encourage them to speak. they were hungry, they told me. hungry for love, for kindness, for sympathy and compassion. but they were also hungry for food.

which led me back to my refrigerator, staring into the depths, wondering... "so what the f@#%$#k am i supposed to eat?"

Monday, January 26, 2009

dancing across the day

today was one of my busy days. i can see that going forward, i need to be careful the days i have baby jake, that i'm not tempted to try to get too much done in the mornings... i end up exhausted when i need the most energy!

so far, i've washed, dried and folded two loads of clothes, prepared two kinds of soup (split pea and corn chowder), bought dog food, fed the car, stopped at the bank, did two readings, cleaned out the fridge, vacuumed and mopped the floor, wiped down the appliances, counters and cabinets. tonight i have my write-a-book-in-90-days seminar, so it'll be a late night. i'm glad i made time for a nap!

eating the angel way - part three

but it wasn't just a question of what i was supposed to eat, however. the more i sat and thought about and considered this issue, the more i realized how adversarial my relationship with food and my own body really was.

for example, i frequently forget to eat. i can go hours and hours and hours - all day - practically and forget to eat. part of it is that, for me, the process of creating anything lulls me into an Other Place, a place where mundane things like time and meals and laundry and dust bunnies don't exist. when writing something as long and as complex as my last trilogy, for example, or even the book i'm working on now, the temptation is always to go to that OtherPlace, and stay there. re-entry, as im sure anyone reading this who's an artist of any sort understands, can be tricky.

i realized that what usually happened was that i didn't eat all day - from perhaps six in the morning until about two or so in the afternoon. at that point, of course, i was ravenously hungry, completely exhausted and prone to put anything at all into my mouth, assuming it met the parameters of my picky palate. when i was running and working out, of course, i'd followed a carefully planned diet of meal shakes and salads and yogurts and minimeals. but left to my own devices, mistress of oceans of time, with access to practically any kind of food available on the planet at any given time, i frequently chose not to feed myself at all.

so what was THAT about, i wondered?

and furthermore, the war WILL end. blessed be.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

eating the angel way.. part two

the newfound stability in my life meant that i had time and energy to focus on things that really mattered to me - my writing, my intuitive abilities and my family and friends. it also meant i had lots of time to cook, to make big meals, and to indulge my passion for baked goods.

slowly, the combination of sloth, a highly sedentary occupation, and a love of comfort food began to show. like a cold-water phobe easing into deeper water, i let ten pounds, then fifteen, then twenty creep on. then my hormones began to go haywire. it took five years, but finally, i decided i had to do something differently, i thought. but what?

i figured i had to begin with food. along the way, intermittently, i'd tried all sorts of various diets. i used a combination of weight watchers and rigorous exercise to shed my baby weight ... i topped out with libby at 196 and was 116 at my lowest six years later. i didn't want to be that rigorous and i didn't like the idea of a "diet." i wanted to find something i could stick to the rest of my life - that was flexible and forgiving and allowed me to eat as much as the stuff i could intuitively tell was good for me, and avoid all the stuff i could intuitively tell was bad.

the more i developed my intuition, the more i could taste the metallic aftertastes in such highly processed foods as diet soda and soy milk. i've always been a picky eater - certain foods, like tomato sauce, simply look too much like blood for me to enjoy. anything like a fish that resembles too closely what it was in life on my plate, i can't bear... i've never been able to eat a chicken leg, for example, though white meat goes down just fine - on my plate it doesn't resemble any recognizable part of a living chicken. forget whole fish and lobster. i also can't stand the taste of any kind of cheese - although it's only the kind with the stinky molds growing on them im really allergic to. i don't have much of a sweet tooth, either... it's salty things i crave.

but just as i was walking a spiritual path, i was also walking a physical one and it seemed as fraught with pitfalls as any purgatory. i tried a lot of "diets" and "programs." i listened and watched my friends. the most frustrating piece of all was the way some things that seemed to work for my friends DID work for me, but then there were others that didn't.

it was the same with all the books and internet information i found. some stuff worked, some stuff didn't. some stuff that was recommended tasted so foul i decided only a demon masquerading as a chef could've concocted it out of some hateful jealousy of our ability to enjoy food.

so there i was... five years later, thirty pounds heavier... staring into my refrigerator... wondering... what the f@#$k am i supposed to eat?

to be continued...

and furthermore, the war WILL end. blessed be.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

it's official - i'm a comment queen!!!!

thanks to my friend at tutu's bliss! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! and look... i figured out how to put the picture in!!!

it doesn't say on her website how to pass this award along, so i wanted to let all my gentle readers know how much i enjoy and appreciate your comments! i love comments and i love reading your blogs! thanks so much for stopping by and reading!!

i also wanted to mention that my basket is slowly taking shape... so far, among other things, it includes hand and foot lotion by aveda, organic hot chocolate by green and black, warming tea and soothing face wash by rose, and a special candle assortment that always reminds me of the scents of summer!

eating... the angel way - part one

a couple years ago, just about this time of year, i was confronted by the sad reality that if i wasn't going to exercise like a fiend, i couldn't eat anything i wanted. but the reason i used to exercise like a fiend had nothing to do with what i wanted to do... exercise was a way to control, to punish, and to sublimate a lot of very negative and hurtful feelings. i was in great shape... but to stay that way i had to be really mean to myself.

and i didn't like that.

i don't like to be mean to anyone, let alone me.

as soon as the overall stress level in my life declined - i moved in with Beloved, my ex crawled back under his rock, the kids got older and i quit imagining i'd ever find that elusive pot of gold at the end of everyone else's rainbow - the one called "gainful employment" - i was a lot happier in general.

i was running 7.5 miles a day, six days a week, and working out in a gym for an hour a day three days a week. i felt overtrained, overworked and bone-weary. i'd whipped myself into a size four, but i wasn't happy with how i felt doing what i had to do to stay that way.

however, this was not an easy decision.

i don't come from a long line of sylphs. i come from a long line of women who struggle with hormonal and thyroid challenges, and all sorts of weight and metabolism issues. my maternal grandmother was a strong athletic woman well into her seventies, but she was no size four. my mother began her struggle with weight in childhood. in each of my pregnancies, i gained at least 60 pounds, and growing up, FAT was a dirty word. "that makes you look fat" is my mother's fashion kiss of death.

so doing this - quitting dieting, quitting working out - felt like a leap into the great unknown. but i was determined i was going to learn how to be kind to my body, and how to be kind to myself. i wasn't going to run one more step or lift one more weight until i felt like doing so. i wasn't going to punish myself, i wasn't going to withhold anything - be it chips or chocolate or sloth. i was going to turn off the voices that said i "should" or "shouldn't" - i was going to listen to the voices that said... "annie, you go right ahead!"

so i quit working out, and quit being mean to myself about what i wanted to eat, and sat back to see what would happen.

to be continued...

and furthermore, the war WILL end. blessed be.

Friday, January 23, 2009

i'm back!

and this is post #572!

a few clicks, a few "hms," a couple "ahs," and voila, the Computer Guy had my puter back to his(?)- her? - old self. at least, i hope so.

i was a bit demoralized all day, having lost a whole new scene this morning. there's nothing worse than losing words and losing new words is worst of all because those are fresh words - like fresh concrete. they haven't had a chance to set.

but i did get a chance to get all caught up on the laundry and zone 5. and i found a wonderful new "purple" food - forbidden rice!!! i'll be writing more about "purple" and other "rainbow" foods next week.... im speaking at passiflora in new hartford this thursday night on the Angel Eating Guidelines.

i also spoke to rose and laura about items to include in my SuperAwesome Giveaway of 13 Essential Things (to get you through the winter.) so far i have SIX items set aside, THREE items ordered, and a LOT of ideas to narrow down! i've realized i consider so many things essential to getting through the winter, i might have to create a runner-up's basket!!!!

and now... for a few minutes at least... back to the book!

please be patient :( experiencing technical difficulties... my computer crashed this morning while i was writing and i lost about an hour and a thousand words or so worth of work. i have a call into my Computer Guy. please think happy thoughts!!!!

and furthermore, the war WILL end... blessed be.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

it's thursday... listen to laura!!!

tune into's seventh wave network at three pm eastern standard time to hear my sister-in-spirit talk about animal communication...i'm hearing she has a Very Special Guest who is just howling - i mean HOPING to weigh in!!!!

go to her blog, leave her a comment, tell her i sent you and i'll give you another entry in my superawesome giveaway!!!! call in to her show and i'll give you FIVE!!!!!

another great giveaway!!!!

win a FIFTY DOLLAR barnes and noble GIFT CARD!!!! AND a book!!! over at A Devonshire Design...!!!! is that an awesome giveaway, or WHAT??!!!!! tell her granny annie sent you, and i'll give you an extra entry in MY superawesome giveaway!!!!!

january thaw

most years that i can remember, late in january, the air softens, the sun seems to shine with a promise of summer's strength. one year, when i was 13, the temperature went into the 70's. i remember running around in a pink gingham dress, my arms and legs skinny and white as cotton thread. it won't last, warned my mother, and it didn't, but for one glorious day that january, summer made a guest appearance.

today and tomorrow are predicted to be near forty... a veritable heat wave in new england. i don't plan to prance around in pink gingham but it will be nice not to feel that icy slap every time i open the door.

today's a designated writing day and im still muddling through the middle. at this point it feels like i have a lot of lumpy clay in front of me and im trying to find the pieta - or whatever it is - inside it. its mushy and its oozy and just because there's a lot of it doesn't make it completely easy to deal with. it's nice to have so much text to work with on the one hand, but on the other, it's sloppy and unwieldy and i feel like ive got mud splashing and dripping everywhere.

i'm collecting items for my basket of goodies for my giveaway - it's amazing how alike everyone thinks when it comes to surviving winter! i can safely say that everyone who commented on what they feel they need named at least one item i'm plannig to include!! so leave me some comment-love for an entry... and if you post my button on your blog, you get TWO entries... (i'll be posting buttons after my blog redesign...please don't think i won't reciprocate!)

and furthermore, the war will end. blessed be.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

god's in his heaven...

...all's right with the world.

today was one of those days where the world felt like it all fell into place. i got a lot done - including three loads of laundry, all zones tidied, and my writing room dusted and vacuumed. the pork chops are grilling as i type this.

i enjoyed a lovely lunch with one friend and then returned home to find that another was in the neighborhood and could stop in for tea.

i made time to dance, to stretch, to indulge in foods of which the Angels approve.

i spent time with the story, poking and teasing and twisting it around, trying new angles, new twists.

it was a very good day.

focus and intention

the gift of unexpected time is a double-edged sword - it's so very easy for me to fritter it away like the grasshopper who fiddled while the ants prepared for the winter. and so, while i let myself ease into my day, i've decided i need to set some focus and intention.

today, as promised, my main focus will be on writing. but i have dinner to think about... (pork chops)... laundry to attend to (two loads of dark colds)...and a living room and writing room in serious need of some domestic-goddess attention (zone 5 in flylady's terms).

additionally, i'm going to make time to take care of myself, too - tea with laura and yoga.

and furthermore, the war will end. blessed be.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

gift of time

of all the things i possess in this world, the most precious is my time. i figure there's only a finite amount of it, and i have no way of knowing how close i might be to the bottom of this particular jar of peanut butter.

consequently, i tend to guard my time rather jealously. im choosy about where i go, what i do, and who i spend it with. and since there really isn't enough money in the world to in any way truly compensate me for what i feel to be the value of one hour's worth of my time, it makes for a lousy work ethic, because i can only be motivated to do things in which i perceive there to be some other intrinsic value besides mere money.

it also makes me nearly delirious when i'm given time i didn't think i would have.

like tomorrow. and thursday. and friday.

where did all this splendiferous time come from?

i cleared my calendar in anticipation of jury duty. i'd begged off three times in a row and this time, i figured, they weren't letting me out of it. but after listening to president obama's speech this afternoon, i was quite resigned to go - looking forward to it, even. after all, as my friend laura sadly said, when i asked her how to get out of doing it, im the sort of person they want.

or, maybe not.

when i checked the web site this evening, it said i didn't have to go.

i was in the middle of my exultations when i remembered something i said this morning, in an off-hand kind of way, the way you make promises to kids or spouses when you're not really listening.

if You get me out of jury duty, i'd said, as i was dusting off my altar and lighting a bit of sage, i promise i'll spend the next three days Writing (which, in all fairness to me and the Powers That Be, i'm itching to do. my friend leaves for hawaii in just a week.)

i think this falls under the category of you just never know Who might be listening.

and furthermore, i am highly confident the War is going to end. blessed, blessed be.

i'm having so much fun...

putting together the giveaway basket of Thirteen Essential Things to get through a long cold winter. i've realized i'm either a highly indulgent person or someone who feels the cold terribly because i've discovered i have quite a few MORE essential things than THIRTEEN!!! (who knew?!)

to give you a few examples, i need fluffy socks, soft throws, fingerless gloves and lots of scarves. i like my thinskins camisoles and fuzzy overalls. and those are just things i wrap around my body.

so share with me, if you will, gentle reader, what're some things you can't live through the winter without?

ps... remember... all comments count as entries!!! :)

tell me what you think...

... of my new button!! or better yet... copy and paste it on to your blog so i will have some to copy and paste onto mine!!!! :)

and furthermore, the war WILL end. blessed be!

Monday, January 19, 2009

why i'm hopeful - #562

there's a lot of reasons to be happy about tomorrow, but here's mine.

for the first time in a long time, there's going to be a grandmother in the White House. not someone who is a grandmother and happens to also be married to the president - but a bona fide grandmother who's there to do Grandmotherly things. so not only is there a First Wife, there's a First Grandmother, too - who raised quite an impressive daughter. so that doesn't just mean there's a grandmother, there's a Grandmother - someone who KNOWS what she's doing when it comes to taking care of the people in her life.

a few years ago, i read an article in the new york times that reported about how the presence of the maternal grandmother is frequently the deciding factor in whether or not a child survives in africa.

a few years ago, when janet jackson had her wardrobe malfunction and the whole world gasped at the sight of a nipple (OH MY GOD LIKE WE DONT ALL HAVE THEM?) i noticed it happened on imbolc, and i said to laura that i thought we'd seen a manifestation of divine feminine energy and power.

i think we're seeing another one now.

sunday sprint

i like days i get things done. i like starting my week off with a clean room and bathroom. i like having a framework within which to function. i like having, as my grandmothher used to say, a plan of attack.

i shared my food plan for katie's house with meg, upon whom the brunt of the work and responsibility will fall. she eyed me first with horror, then alarm. i don't want to have to know how to do all this, she protested.

it's good training, i insisted. you'll have to know how to do all this eventually some day- this is meal planning and shopping and menu choosing and feeding people. if you don't let me teach you how to do this, you're going to have to figure it out on your own. and if you don't learn now, while you have this opportunity, it's going to make your life that much harder when you have a family of your own.

i know, she replied with a deep sigh and an air of resignation, as she went off with the plan and a cook book under her arm.

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

ps... leave me a comment and get an entry in my SuperAwesome Giveaway!!!

Sunday, January 18, 2009


my five-hundred and sixtieth post!!!!!

and what's so special about that? first of all, it's because i want to tell you how excited i am about the new blog design diana at custom blog designs is putting together just for me!!

and secondly, it's because this is the post where i announce my giveaway for my six-hundredth post!!!!!

ive been watching and reading and lurking and seeing how much fun the many giveaways are on various blogs...i've even managed to WIN a couple. and so i wanted to join in the fun and here's what i'd like to give away, on my 600th post, in celebration of the brand new look my blog is going to have...

a basket of 13 nurturing things i consider essential for making it through the long dark winter. these things will include some of my personally favorite hand- and homemade type things, from some of my dear friends who etsy (like rose) as well as other witchy women of my acquaintance.

if you'd like to play along, gentle reader, here's what you do -

the winner will be selected by random drawing. every time you leave me a comment you, you get an entry. if you're already a follower, you get two additional entries - if you become a follower, you get an extra one. you get an additional entry for every comment you leave me between now and post 599. if you link to this and mention this giveaway on your blog, you get three additional entries. if you send me someone new who leaves a comment, you get one additional entry. there will also be a runner-up category for the person with the most entries :).

between now and then, i'll reveal more specifically what the basket will hold!!! thanks for playing in my very first giveaway!!!! please check back to see the new design!!!! and remember - for every comment you leave on the next 40 posts... the more entries you get!!!

sunday visioning

i felt much better about my last sunday's visioning statement than i did about the first one i wrote, so the first lesson i would say i've learned this year is that small goals are easier to attain than large ones.

then i read my friend patti's blog Eat Man Drink Water, and she posted a bucket list of stuff do to before one dies. a lot of the stuff on it i've already done (whew) and most of the rest of the stuff is stuff i don't particularly feel the need to do - ever (owning a convertible and going on a cruise being the two most memorable examples)...but it got me thinking.

what WOULD i like to do before i die? this is a much bigger question than i can answer in ten minutes of blogging but it's one worth sitting with, especially as the year rolls down to my 50th birthday.

gentle readers, how about you? what would you like to do, before you die?

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

pausing to consider....

heather gave me this idea... to take stock of the week just past before i create the vision of what i want my next week to look like.

it looks like a pretty good week. i made time for friends, for writing, for recuperating. there was plenty of food, plenty of time to get things done. i was able to help my daughters, help my friends. i exercised, i ate right. i meditated and prayed. i even made my first soul collage card:

soul collage is a process created by a woman named seena frost. the idea is to create a deck of oracle cards, similar to the tarot, but customized, so to speak, for the person who creates it. no two decks will ever be alike, and the cards are meant, at least as far as i understand the process, to be used only by the person who creates them. i love the idea of collage, of creating my own presonal deck and i have been dancing with this idea for quite some time, not to mention lurking on a yahoo group to which one of my Gentle Readers also belongs!

as ms frost advises, the first card to be created in any deck should be the Source card. when i saw this image, i knew it said Source to me.

i also took baby jake to get his second hair cut... the first one hardly counted because my hairdresser was barely able to get in a snip or two. here's a picture of the little guy watching his favorite show - "my friends tigger and pooh" - looking eerily like a very young version of my great-grandfather...

i'm recuperating quickly from my tooth-pulling - aided i am quite sure by all the good energy i feel from so many Gentle Readers... thank you all again for your kind comments... there's nothing quite as captivating as comment-love!

all in all... a really good week.

come saturday morning

the air has a brittle edge down the back of my throat this morning, the light is that distinctive january blue. the puppies picked their way across the crusty snow. more's expected tomorrow - today is just cold.

Beloved's still sleeping, libby's babysitting baby jake today, and i am worried about my oldest daughter. my daughter has one of the most difficult jobs i can imagine - she is a child abuse investigator for the state. she is the person who goes when the first call for help comes in, she is the one - even before the police sometimes - who sees the real cost our culture exacts on its most helpless and its most vulnerable.

but it exacts a terrible toll on her, too. can't you work a spell, asked my middle daughter, meg, last night. i think katie needs a new job.

i think she does, too... as a thousand reasons rushed into my head as to why this is not exactly the most auspicious time, energetically or otherwise, to go about throwing one's Will against the Universal Flow. and yet, sam's snoring peacefully on the chair beside me, reminding me that nothing at all is really impossible.

it's been a while since i worked a spell and im not sure i really want to stick my big toe into the tidal wave of change that feels like it's about to be unleashed.

but what set off my internal maternal alarm was the fact that they were eating macaroni and cheese and chicken nuggets for the third or fourth night that week. i may not have much control over much of anything in the world, but perhaps its time to help my daughter get control of her food. and so while i mull about the spell, i'll be brewing up menus and food plans and shopping lists and receipes.

and furthermore, the War must end. blessed be.

Friday, January 16, 2009

it's been a while...

since i posted any rainbow recipes. but it's so cold and cooking is the second thing i like to do when the temperature drops. so here's what we're having for dinner tonight.. or rather, here's what the rest of my family is having... i think i might be sticking to rice pudding and milk shakes another day.

roast pork tenderloin with rainbow root veggies in maple-butter-rosemary glaze:

pork tenderloin
minced garlic - 1 Tbsp per tenderloin
4 Tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped and divided

2-3 red potatoes, quartered (red)
2-3 carrots, peeled and chopped into coins (orange)
2-3 parsnips, peeled and chopped into coins (pale yellow)
2-3 celery stalks, chopped (green)*
1 large purple onion, quartered and separated (purple)

4 Tbs butter
1/2 cup maple syrup (real maple syrup)

place pork tenderloin in roasting pan, sprinkle with garlic and 1/4 of the rosemary. combine veggies and the rest of the rosemary. melt butter into maple syrup, pour over veggies and toss gently to coat. at this point, you can either put them in the same pan as the pork, or place them in a cast iron skillet, and roast separately. i like to use my cast iron cookware at least once a day - it's an easy way to ensure that everyone gets the iron they need. cook at 375 for approx 1-1/2 to 2 hours, depending on the size and amount of veggies and meat.

to go along with this, im probably serving another green veggie and bread pudding (with blueberries) for dessert. i'll probably force myself to eat the bread pudding :).

* note to my fellow cooks - i use celery because libby likes celery, but feel free to substitute any veggie, especially any root veggie of your choice. all veggies, as are all foods that grow from the earth, are by default green - so this category allows for as much creativity as you wish to add. happy cooking!

how fitting....

...that post number 555 is a notice to go read my other blog... The Cranky Crone.

freakin' cold friday

the car thermometer read minus 2 when i went to run libby up the hill to the bus, and even sam doesn't want to hang around outside and sniff poop. she beats buddy to the door - though that's mostly because buddy is leashed and can only go as fast as i can. the reason i allow sam to go out unleashed in this kind of weather is because i can't manage both dogs on the ice and sam has marginally more sense. not much more... she's a beagle and led by her nose... but marginally more.

it's the kind of weather that makes me wonder what on earth the pilgrims were thinking when they decided to create their brave new world here. didn't it occur to them to go south? call me a weenie but i don't know how you survive this kind of weather without either a lot of dogs or central heat.

my gum and jaw don't hurt too badly and when i looked for the gaping wide hole in my mouth, it doesn't seem to be there. it was hard to sleep last night, not just because the tooth was in the side i like to sleep on, but because the moon was shining through my window as brightly as if it thought it was still full. it was nice having Beloved to cuddle with every time i woke up. i decided not to take the vicodin...especially since a friend of mine had to have her liver biopsied after using vicodin. since the pain wasn't unbearable, i decided to deal with it by reiking it and icing it and distracting myself by cuddling with Beloved, rather than subjecting my liver to any additional abuse.

thank you so much to everyone who sent me good wishes and happy thoughts. i think they worked :). i'm looking forward to recuperating today. i have a pork roast for tonight and maybe i'll make bread pudding for dessert.

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

i survived

i didn't even faint. it's a sad truth, but the sight of blood doesn't just make me queasy, it makes me keel over. what's really strange is that i not only intially wanted to be a nurse when i was very young, i remembered being one. i also read all my mother's nursing textbooks - my favorite was the one on bed-side nursing - by the time i was seven.

so i know how to make hospital corners, how to give a bed bath, how to change a field dressing. i know how to make splints, how to carry someone with a neck injury, how to turn someone over if they can't move themselves. my favorite series was cherry ames...i liked her a lot better than nancy drew, even if i did wonder why she wanted to spend all her time going from job to job. didn't she ever just want to stay in one place, i'd think.

but then i started to faint. just the whiff of a doctor's office is enough to make me woozy. it's not like i've ever had any bad experiences with doctors... i've always been remarkably healthy. (maybe it's because i avoid doctors, mostly.)

and then i did some past life regression work, and i realized that in my most recent life, i was a nurse. and in this one, i have other kinds of healing work to do, and an aversion to blood completely serves to eliminate any possiblity that i might have gone into any kind of medical field.

what kinds of things do you suppose you might carry over from your past lives, gentle readers?

if it's thursday it must be tooth-day

please feel sorry for me today.

i am having a tooth pulled - one of my molars in the back of my head.

it's a tooth that's troubled me in varying degrees since i was 18.

now it won't trouble me any more.

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

you say you wanna be a Witch?

lynette of a crazed mind (tuesday's featured blogger of the day over at SITS) left me this question twice... what advice would i give to a young person who wants to explore this path?

first of all, i would make a distinction between wicca and witchcraft, as i practice it and understand it. wicca is a formal religion that exists within the umbrella of neopaganism - i consider myself a Witch, not a wiccan. wicca has rules and sacred scripture and lineage and is very much a reflection of the late 19th century british civil servant and his friends and enemies who thought it up. the early history of wicca almost reads like a harry potter installment and if you like masterpiece theatre of the absurd, you may find it amusing.

a Witch, as i define it, is someone who is wise in the ways of "wicce-craft," the knowledge or the craft, of the wise... and the wisdom is in well one understands oneself, one's kindred, and one's world. a Witch makes no distinction between that which is created and that which creates - god is not merely the potter who shaped the clay, the clockmaker who set it all ticking. that which creates is understood to be intimately part of all that is created, and that which is created is understood to inherently manifest some living aspect of the Divine. unlike the more mainstream religions now prevalent across the world, Witches make no distinction between the natural realm and that of the Spirit. as above, so below, as within, so without means that micro- and macrocosm perfectly reflect the reality of each other.

and so where you start is not in a book, or at a class. where you start is both outside and inside yourself. begin to pay attention to small things, like what phase of the moon we're in, or what your natural sleep cycle would be, if you allowed it to simply happen. spend as much time as you can paying attention to the seasons, to the animals and plants in the area where you live. learn the wildflowers, and birds, and perhaps their meanings according to native american or other indigenous traditions. pay attention to your dreams, to synchronicities and to coincidences. begin to spend time in meditation or simply sitting still.

like all mystical paths, the path of the Witch is solitary. you can begin by doing what others have done, but ultimately, you must do what feels true to you. there are many resources which you may consult, and i encourage you to read as widely as possible. there's even a book called "the well-read witch" - pagans as a group are known to be uncommonly well-read in admittedly quite esoteric subjects.

and so, for lynette... i hope that helps :).

national delurking week

according to my new blogger find...ZEN CUPCAKE - her blog makes me drool, literally - go read the receipe for the red velvet cupcakes and the black bottomed ones - this week is NATIONAL DELURKING WEEK. so everyone who's out there ... everyone who's lurking and you know who you are... step out of the shadows and say hello!

a blog about books

i got tagged for this meme by BookWormMom a few days ago and have been pondering the answers to the questions ever since. here's The Rules:

1. Tag 3-5 people, so the fun keeps going!
2. Leave a comment at the original post at A Striped Armchair, so that Eva can collect everyone’s answers.
3. If you leave a comment and link back to Eva as the meme’s creator, she will enter you in a book giveaway contest! She has a whole shelf devoted to giveaway books that you’ll be able to choose from, or a bookmooch point if you prefer.
4. Remember that this is all about enjoying books as physical objects, so feel free to describe the exact book you’re talking about, down to that warping from being dropped in the bath water…
5. Make the meme more fun with visuals! Covers of the specific edition you’re talking about, photos of your bookshelves, etc.

The books that’ve been on your shelves the longest: my mother's copies of Little Women and Little Men. printed during ww2, the paper is brittle and yellow, and the typeface is teeny-weeny. Little Women is the first story that made me cry and was the first time i realized i could find friends on the pages of books that i could not find anywhere else.

A book that reminds you of something specific in your life (a person, a place, a time, etc.): Secret Sins by Lorraine Stanton. lorraine was my best friend for a very long time at a time when i needed a really good friend. she walked me through some of the darkest places of my life, and when she died, i lost someone i truly loved. i cherish the one book she published. when i read it, as occasionally i do, i never fail to hear her voice rising off the page.

A book you acquired in some interesting way (gift, serendipity in a used bookstore, prize, etc.): my Medieval Wordbook by Madeline Pelner Cosman. this was a gift from Beloved last year for christmas. i wasn't expecting it, hadn't asked for it, didn't even know such a thing existed. but i love words, and, as Beloved said when i opened it, "i bet you know a lot of these." and i did, but there were a few i didn't know and those were so much fun to find.

A book that’s been with you to the most places: Ancient History, 2nd ed by Charles Alexander Robinson, Jr. i acquired this book in Latin I in high school, and it has been an invaluable resource throughout my entire education ever since. encompassing the history of western civilization from the earliest egyptians through late antiquity and the final collapse of the roman empire in the west, it sketches enough a skeleton that whole ages of history hang together in the sort of big-picture way the trilogy-writing novelist in me really appreciates. and while its point of view is undeniably mainstream patriarchal wasp, it provided the framework against which i could come to my own understanding of the flow of history. it came with me to college, to grad school, and constantly at my fingertips depending on children needing information, and what sort of world i might be building.

The most recent addition to your shelves: A Question of Guilt by Julianne Lee. this is a novel about mary queen of scots... i bought it right before christmas on a shopping trip, and since its hard for me to read fiction while im writing fiction, haven't yet had the chance to pick it up.

so here's who i tag... Shades of Scorpio, Patrice and Veggie Mom!

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

sam i am

this is sam. she is about six years old - we don't know exactly, because we aren't sure how old she was when she was found.

sam came into our lives by magic. she is the direct manifestation of a little girl's dream, a grown man's specifications and a little bit of... own kind of oomph.

but it was libby who started it all. libby wanted a dog. libby loves dogs, has always loved dogs, and wanted a dog so badly she used to be pretend to be one. but the condo i rented prohibited animals of any kind - except possibly fish - and so poor libby had to make due with stuffed animals and playing puppy.

when we moved into pond house to live with Beloved, libby asked for a real dog. please, mommy, please, please, please? she'd beg, her big blue eyes wide in her urchin face. please, please, please?

only under these conditions, said Beloved... who had enough to cope with. the dog had to be a beagle. it had to be no one else's dog... found running around someone's backyard. it had to be a good dog, not agressive or mean. and we had to name it sam.

mommy, said libby... you're a witch... can't you work a puppy spell?

in case you haven't been reading long enough, im not really the kind of witch who works a lot of spells. im a go-with-the-flow kinda want to make something happen that badly, let's wait around and see if it happens on its own first. and lots of times, things do... manifest, resolve, or disperse, so that the desired outcome is achieved without the enormous personal investment of energy, focus, concentration and intention a real spell requires.

but i love libby and i was a bit lonely around the house during the day and i had started to think a dog might be a Good Idea. i'll think about it, libby, i said.

a good spell requires, among other things, a clear vision of what it is exactly one hopes to manifest. it seemed quite impossible to manifest a real dog with all the conditions attached to it that Beloved imposed, but the likely impossiblity of accomplishing anything has never stopped me from trying before. the world's full of little dogs, i reasoned. lots of them get lost.

and so, i began to mentally build my "puppy spell" as i thought of it and nine days into it, an online friend told me about a little beagle she'd noticed wandering into her backyard... eating bird seed and dog poop from her dog. i think it's lost, my friend said.

the humane society came and set a trap and brought the dog to a shelter, where they kept her for ten days to allow an owner to come and claim her. she was 15 pounds of fur and bones and she was wearing an orange hunting collar. she had cuts and scrapes all over her. we went to see her in the shelter on a brutally cold day much like this one. she trotted out of her pen, beagle ears all perked, tail wagging. she looked at me and i looked at her and that was it.

we brought sam home on valentine's day, 2004, just about a month to the day that libby asked me to work the spell. she spends her days lying in any patch of sun she can find, mostly sleeping, though every now and then, she'll race up and down the steps fetching tennis balls. she makes Beloved crazy ... poor sam is still terrified of men, all men, and despite the fact he prepares a hot breakfast every morning for her, she refuses to come closer than a few feet. (note to all would-be users of Magic - set your parameters carefully!) with me and the girls, however, she's the sweetest little beagle you could ask for.

i consider sam a great blessing, even though her neuroses are many, obvious and mostly involve poop. she came, not in answer to a little girl's wish, nor even in response to Beloved's command, but when i was ready to embrace and to heal the most wounded parts of mySelf. i consider sam my familiar in the oldest, most ancient understanding of that concept. she didn't come to show me what a proficient Witch i am... i had only begun to think of the spell... she came to show me how - and what - to heal.

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Monday, January 12, 2009

what i did today

today was one of those productive days, where there seemed to be time for everything - maybe not as much time as i would've liked, and maybe not enough of everything as i had planned, but i spent enough time doing enough of something so that i feel like i accomplished something.

i'm just over 70,000 words in the story. i spent some time writing this morning - again, not as much as i would've liked, but enough that i can say i did it. i spent thirty minutes exercising. i cleaned out my refrigerator and got the laundry caught up. tomorrow i have appointments and a hair cut with baby jake. i'm hopeful the schedule i've set up for myself will allow me to accomplish all i want to accomplish.

a friend took me out for lunch today - a very special friend, someone whose story has influenced my decision to write the story i'm working on. the ending i'm giving my characters is her ending in many ways. she's going to kaui in a few weeks and im hoping against hope i have a first draft with which to send her off to read under the hawaiian sun.

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

under a cancer moon

even the sun looked watery yesterday. i don't believe it's any accident that last night's full moon is predicted to be the largest and brightest of the year. when the moon is full in cancer, the energy of the Divine Mother, the archetyal feminine, is most abundantly expressed... the energy of love, of loving-kindness, of healing, of peace.

we couldn't see Her here last night. Beloved scurried from window to window, looking for the moon, but the snow that began falling in tiny flakes around 3 yesterday afternoon completely obscured even a hint of Her glow. it was, i thought, the most perfect expression of paradox...the only way to experience this particular full moon is to Feel it, to go into the silence, the darkness, the deep and let the Light we can not see envelope us, like the snow. the Great Mother showed that Herself last night...all we had to do was look around. i dont think it was possible NOT to feel Her presence last night... palpable as a bride's desire behind the veil of falling snow. even the dogs seemed to tiptoe when i walked them late...concluding their business with almost reverential efficiency.

last night and today is a time to revel in self-care, nurturance and all things warm and soft and comfortable. the snow continues to fall in tiny, almost dainty flakes, fluffy as eiderdown. it's the kind that makes sam look like she's got springs on the bottoms of her fat little paws, as she bounds through it, beagle-ears flying.

today i'll make a roast and maybe yorkshire pudding. friday i baked cookies, buttery, crunchy ones with big fat walnuts and tiny chocolate chips. maybe today i'll make some more.

my few days of sitting with the story, of working with the tarot has seemed to pay off in spades. the week before the full moon i never produce much, anyway... it's like the energy interferes and provides a natural block, forcing me to either go into the interior of the story consciously, or to take a rest. from now through the first quarter of the next moon is the time i find particularly conducive to writing.

i'm still not sure whether or not to include the Naughty Scene...i can't decide whether it belongs in the story, or if the Characters are simply insisting on showing me that They, like all the other creations in my life, no matter how much i feel They are part of me, are also Part of Something Else.

i wish all my gentle readers a day of self-nurturance and loving-kindness.

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

reading day

today's the day that laura and i set aside to do readings together. we're available at other times, too, of course, but if you want a reading with the both of us, we always set aside the second saturday of the month.

a reading with both of us is least from my perspective. i'll be back later with more... including a meme AND an award... if i can figure out how to do the cut and paste!

and furthermore, the war must end... blessed be.

Friday, January 9, 2009

i've been TAGGED!

thanks to kathy over at The Amortization of Good Will (try saying that blog's name really fast ten times) i've been tagged for this...

fourth folder fourth photo photo tag!!!!

1. Go to the 4th picture folder on your computer.

2. Post the 4th picture in that folder.

3. Explain the picture.

4. Tag 4 more people.

why four?

Four is a sacred number in many cultures and religions including the Zia tribe of New Mexico, The Four cups of wine drunk during Jewish Passover, The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, The Four Noble Truths of Buddhism. We have many examples in biology and nature. The four chambers of the human heart, a four leaf clover, hmm, it's wonderful to meditate on this.

four is also, according to some numerologists, my "soul number" or "year" number. my birthday does add up to four. i have four children, im one of four. fours, especially in combination of 3 and 1's, have always figured prominently in my life.

and so, in the spirit of Four, here's the fourth photo from my fourth folder:

this is a picture of my dollhouse before i started refurbishing it this summer. i figured if my real house was a mess, i could at least make some headway in the dollhouse. the story behind this dollhouse is that i originally purchased it for my sister sheila when i was in college. i bought it with change i saved from the sears catalogue. it arrived in a box and a thousand pieces, and i can't imagine my stepfather had too many nice things to say about my idea because he is the one who put the freaking thing together. my sister played with it, and then it was passed to my girls, who slowely brought it to the state you see above.

and in the interests of showing you what magic a little paint and glue and love can do... here's what it looks like now:

and here's who i tag -

1 - kristin
2 - selchie
3 - boxofficegirl
4 - njdecorator*

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be!

my apologies to all the linkees... blogger is not letting me save links for some reason...i will be back to fix in a bit! :)

Thursday, January 8, 2009


what do you do when your characters want to do something kinky, something that makes you feel vaguely uncomfortable to write about? do you let them?

just wondering...

listen to laura!!!

tune into my soul-sister's show this afternoon at 3 PM EST today! check out her blog: purple rose musings for the link!

today's my writing day. i spent the day processing the information from the six tarot readings i did around the main characters issues and came up with five pages of very closely typed information that i didn't know before. i also came up with the synopsis for the story that she's written (another two pages) about king arthur.... and figured out where the tie-in would come to the present day story.

so while i've not increased the word count more than negligibly, i do feel i've made some progress.

and then i gave myself a reward i wasn't expecting to savor for quite a few more days... i let myself write the epilogue. it's rough and a bit silly, like a bowl made of playdough compared to one made of say... wedgewood china. but it's THERE.

and yeah, it's happy. :)

and furthermore the war must end. blessed be.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

snow day

maybe someone in town read my blog because the phone call didn't come this morning until the almost respectable hour of 630. i didn't even bother to run for it - it was snowing when i came home last night - later than usual - and i knew there was going to be at least a delay.

when i finally rolled out of bed and walked the puppies, the driveway was a solid sheet of ice. it's not precipitating any more, so im not sure if it means the storm is over, or we're supposed to get more. i have another reading scheduled in person today, but i might call the lady later and offer her either a phone reading, or to reschedule.

i've been lying low the last couple days. sunday night, i think i ate a bad shrimp. it was my own fault (kristin's blog on gluttony made me laugh -there's nothing quite like those wages of sin!) because i was gobbling the shrimp so fast i was barely chewing them. and then i got a taste of Bad Seafood - you know that taste? just for a moment and then i swallowed and i thought to myself: uh-oh, that wasn't good.

and it wasn't.

it wasn't as bad as it could've been - i felt mostly queasy and mildly uncomfortable, and i managed to get all my errands run yesterday and even snuck in a Hair Cut (!!) that i most sorely needed. i also did six card readings around my story yesterday, and have teased or fleshed out several nuanced subtexts to both main and subplots so that i think i have a fair amount of material to weave into my mired muddle of a middle. but i didn't have much energy and i didn't feel like eating At All (though isn't Spirit wonderful? i say i want to lose a few pounds and voila... my appetite gets suppressed for a couple days. oh, to live in such Flow - NOT!)

today i feel better. i have some laundry i want to catch up on - with libby home i'm pretty sure we'll catch up on the chores i neglected.... the best laid plans gang aft awry, as robert burns so aptly observed. but mostly i want to go back... back to the book, back to the story, back to the place where the Magic is.

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

thoughts on three kings' day

a few days ago, i did a reading for a lady who was ready to make serious changes in her life, but didn't know where to begin. a bit of a hoarder, especially about books - not that i relate HAH! - she wanted to know how to shift the energy of all the "stuff" she was clinging to, both tangible and intangible.

what should she do, she wanted to know? the answer was as simple as it was unexpected and surprising, at least for her. give one book from every book shelf and pile you own away... to someone else, to a book sale, to a worthy cause.

that's it? she asked.

that was it.

and then what, she wanted to know.

Spirit doesn't provide the instruction manual, i said. it provides the Answer to the question, and then waits to see if we act on it. try doing that, and see what happens next.

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Monday, January 5, 2009

slo mo monday

at least that's how it feels. libby had a two hour delay this morning, so as soon as i heard the phone ring, i let Beloved answer it (the town sends out these recorded phone calls to notify parents at obscene and ungodly hours of the early morning) and went back to sleep.

my plan today is to clean my kitchen and my entry way (zones 2 and 1 for the FLY-people among my gentle readers) and to spend some time thinking about my middle. im starting to think that the easiest and best thing to do, since i seem to have hit a block in the story, is to simply go around it - in other words, create chapters that are simply placeholder chapters, eg:

Chapter 21

Evie and Lily go on tour of archaeological dig site, Sir Layton (Howard-Horner) reveals most of what's been found but hints there's an even bigger one he's only going to reveal at the press conference on saturday morning. At lunch, however, Evie is coopted into returning to Barrington with Charles' wife, who wants her help in planning how to seduce him once he returns from London the following day.

i know it's easier to revise once i reach the end. this is, after all, only a first draft, nothing's graven in stone and i can't expect to write the entire story in one fell sweep from beginning to seamless middle to end in one flawless run. well, maybe i can and since it's never happened like that any other time, i shouldn't be surprised it's happening now. and i know, that in those blocks, in the cracks and the chinks and the holes in the plot, are really opportunities, challenges, additional twists and threads that if i allow myself to delve into them, will only enrich the story.

i just have to let myself go there. so first to the shower, and then into the mine, where the tunnels feel narrow, dark, and claustrophobic!

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

satisfying sunday

today was one of those days that let me get to the end of it and feel like i've accomplished something. writing my vision statement really helped me stay focused all day on what i wanted to get done - and i did.

so here's what i did to today:

- put away the christmas decorations, removed the tree (okay, Beloved did that as well as help generally), swept the living room.
- walked for forty-five minutes (approx 2 miles)
- napped for thirty minutes
- cleaned my bathroom and my bedroom
- read an arthur book
- wrote 500 words
- did an online impromptu reading for an old friend who immed me to say hello (and got one in return)
- did four loads of laundry (meg folded)
- enjoyed leftover pork roast, root veggies, fresh shrimp and artichokes that Beloved made for dinner
- followed angel way of eating all day!!!!
- meditated on the tarot card i drew this morning... the ace of swords (hah!)

i think i deserve a STAR!! :)

getting there from here

i did a reading yesterday for a lady whose ready to make significant changes in her life but doesn't know where to begin. it's a feeling i know all too intimately. where do i begin?

i used to think that the answer was in lists, and goals and measurable things - like word count, boxes sorted, pounds lost, miles ran. but now i'm starting to realize that the best place to begin is with an idea of what you want to create in the first place. the clearer the idea of the final outcome, the more likely you are to create it.

that's how it works when i write. at some point, usually by the time the first third is completed, the ending comes to me. i know, if i haven't known already, what it is each of the main characters wants, and i can "see" what's going to happen. at that point, the middle, muddled and tortured as it may be, becomes, if not easier to create, at least manageable. it's a turning point in the process and if it never happens, the story can't ever be finished. i get stalled, bogged down, blocked. no matter how much energy i throw against it, i can't move the story until i know the end.

and so this year, spurred on by my write-a-book-in-90-days group, i have decided to spend the first hours of every sunday envisioning, and writing, an intention statement, for all i intend to create, accomplish, allow and manifest in the coming week. i'll let you know how well i do next week.

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

a wing and a prayer

i sent the first 75 pages (nine chapters) to my agent yesterday on a whim, a wing, and a prayer. i haven't even mentioned this book to her - in our last conversation in early december, we talked about my non-fiction book, Eating the Angel Way, and the manuscript of Seventh Son that's been languishing at penguin lo these last 8 months. (Beloved is fit to be tied about that - if this new book is my life cannibalized, then Seventh Son is his.)

this morning i'll send her an email to let her know it's on the way - if she's in the bahamas or something, i don't want to be biting my fingernails waiting to hear something when she hasn't even opened the envelope.

the upside is that even if she's in the bahamas, i'll get a small dose of immediate gratification with an away message. the downside is now i have to think of an interesting, pithy way to sum up the story:

The Secrets We Keep (85-90,000 words, projected) is a modern-day fairy tale about second chances, renewed faith and restored hope. When a psychic tells Evie Alexander that her long-lost love - a boy she knew as a student in England 30 years ago - is looking for her, she refuses to believe it until her blog hit counter starts going crazy. Their romance ended abruptly when his parents intervened, forbidding them to have contact with each other. However, shortly after Evie returned to America, she realized she was pregnant. Estranged from her own family, and alone, she was forced to make the best decision she could. Now, happily married and a successful writer, Evie receives an invitation to attend a conference near her old boyfriend's ancestral home in Wales, and it seems as if fate has intervened to finally allow her to lay the ghosts of the past to rest. Or maybe, it's something else...

what do you think? would you want to read the first page of that?

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Friday, January 2, 2009

a plethora of pears

Beloved made bisque last night because we have a plethora of pears. my daddy, who lives in california which is where adam and eve got kicked out of, to hear him tell it, sent us an annual basket of goodies and this year, the fruit that arrived was slightly - well, rather like the rest of us, i think - bruised.

Beloved used four pears last night to make the soup (and one large butternut squash - as well as olive oil, nutmeg, onion and chicken broth. cream, which makes it a bisque can be added at the end, or, as i discovered today, the soup is perfectly delicious with out it. i'd like to try different combinations of spices or herbs... i think thyme might be nice to try... Beloved served mine with garnished the minced chives.)

we still have four pears left. so tomorrow, i think pear-walnut muffins will be in our future...unless another idea occurs to us...

pear recipes, anyone?

on sisterhood, and other mysteries

i spent the first night of the new calendar year mostly giggling my head off with the participants of the pagan study group i attend once a month. it's hardly pc of me to say so, but i was so glad that no men were there.

don't get me wrong - i like men. men have their uses and their purposes, and my experience of most of them is that they're amusing companions and great fun in bed. but given the choice - a roomful of mixed sexes, or a roomful of women, and i'll take the women any day.

and then i came home to find Beloved had made an absolutely delicious squash-pear bisque.

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

what im grateful for this year

i thought the best way to begin the year i turn 50 is with a list of all things im grateful for... up to now.

1. my health. it's occured to me that i have reached a marvelous plateau in my life - everything still works, and nothing's falling apart yet. things may take longer to get better - the elbow injury i got in mixed martial arts class in june sidelined me all year and totally frustrated my plans to get back into Shape - but for the most part, my physical body and all its myriad abilities is one blessing i have always endeavored to appreciate. my intention this year is to Pay More Attention and to tend to my body's needs with the attitude of loving-kindness - not because i'm afraid i might get sick, but because i understand how finite, how fragile andhow precious this state of being really is.

2. my Beloved. what should i do if i really want to succeed as a writer, i remember someone asking at a workshop once. marry someone who believes in your talent the way you do, the presenter answered at once. i remember joining in the general snicker that swept through the audience. i certainly didn't do that the first time (and neither had most of the audience) but who says mistakes can't be rectified? it isn't always easy being married to someone who's a cross between SuperBoy and Gomez Addams, but the passion, inspiration and support that Beloved has always given to my writing continues to dazzle me. for his presence - thirteen years now - in my life, i will be forever grateful. my intention this year is to continue to nurture our relationship by... Paying Attention.

3. my children. healthy, oppositional, independent, stubborn, intelligent... they are everything i want them to be. my intention for them this year... is to Pay Close Attention. 'nuff said.

4. my grandmother's death. i'm actually starting to miss the old bird. she's been gone long enough now that if she were alive i'd be starting to think i should be visiting her. this is the first christmas without her, without the burden of trying to cajole her into a good time. whenever i start to miss her, all i have to do is remember how mean she was and i feel a lot better she's gone. but she was a Force To Be Reckoned With... and she taught me many things without realizing it... like how not to live. she helped me realize that while most of us come to this world to shine our Light, there seem to be some who come to show their Shadow. and maybe these, ive wondered on more occasion, are the truly Great ones... who come to be hated and reviled, who come to show the depths of the darkness that dwells within us all. and so while i am grateful for her lessons, i am still thankful for her death. i have a sense of getting out of school - it took me nearly fifty years (and i like to think im smart) - and maybe i still don't fully understand the Lesson... but for me, this particular grade is finally over.

5. my friends. i've never had a lot of friends - im not a terribly sociable person. there's one Gentle Reader of this blog who's been gamely inviting me to things for YEARS. i think one day im going to have to surprise her and actually show up. prying me out of my house on a cold dark night is increasingly rare and on warm ones, well, i like to listen to the peepers sing. but through the darkest hours of my life, i've always been blessed to have friends, good friends, true friends, the kind you cherish, walking by my side. my intention for this year going forward is to Pay More Attention - to follow up with phone calls and emails immediately, not set it aside in my head - im terribly absentminded and if i think about doing something, sometimes that means i think i've done it. if you think its bad for friendships, you should see the havoc it wreaks around things like billpaying.

6. the life i have managed to create. when i was in high school, an english teacher asked us to write a vision statement of where we thought we'd be in 30 years. i live beside the shores of a scottish loch, surrounded by woods and hills and countryside, i remember writing. there's hardly anyone for miles around... i have two dogs, three horses and the boy from the village brings me my mail every Thursday. thirty years later, i live beside two ponds in a latitude more northerly than where i was, with two dogs and three cars. there's no boy from the village, of course, but Beloved does bring home the mail when he remembers to get it. my intention this year is to Pay More Attention to the subtle interweavings between Desire, Intention and Manifestation.

i wish all my Gentle Readers a happy, healthy and harmonious 2009!

and furthermore, it would be really great if the war was over by this time next year. blessed be.