Merry Meet and Merry Part, and Merry Meet again

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Blessed Beltane

Blessings to all on this Beltane. May your family, friends and all that you love flourish and thrive. And may your balefires burn bright and strong. Peace and love, harmony and happiness.  So mote it be.

Image credit

Friday, April 29, 2011


From a soft, caressing breeze to wild and dangerous cyclonic forces, our Earth is touched daily by the force of nature called Wind. The horrific news of over 200 people killed by tornadoes in the Southern states on Wednesday demonstrates our helplessness against this power. We can attempt to harness it for alternative energy sources, for recreational wind sailing or kite flying. Picturesque windmills, gentle windchimes and children's pinwheels exhibit the softer side of Wind's power.

I read with great interest a post on a blog I have been following for sometime now. Please click on this link:
Broom With a View   for a wonderful post called "Wind Spirit" by AmethJera.

Wind can be healing, invigorating, helpful (laundry hung to dry in the breeze saves electricity, and smells so good!) as well as irritating (forget your beautifully styled hair in a stiff breeze) and of course dangerous. Never take wind for granted; it is a Force to be reckoned with.

Oh, and P.S. I forgot to turn on the television this morning, so I missed the Royal Wedding. I did see some photos on line, and thought the Bride looked lovely, the Groom dashing. And wow, a lot of unbelievable hats! I assume it was not too windy, because some of those hats could have become deadly weapons in a gusty  breeze.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Old Ways--Try these Beltane Customs

Even with torrential downpours and blustery thunderstorms, the gardens, yards, trees, bushes are leafing out, flowering up, greening and blooming. It is finally safe to say that the cold winter months have receded, and though we may still have some frosty mornings for a few more days, Spring is here!! Beltane is a celebration of the arrival of warmer weather and the planting season. Planting of gardens, yes, and also planting of seeds of new ideas and inspirations. Setting goals for this new season. A whole new world of wonders to experience and enjoy. Summer is coming, the sun is shining (well, in some places!) and we all feel lighter and free.

I have been reading through quite a few books, just looking for some new ideas for my Beltane Celebration. I found some "Old Ideas" that are new to me, and am planning on incorporating some of them this sabbat.

1.Beating the Bounds. This custom involves walking around the boundaries of one's property to invoke protection. In some places, the entire community would walk the boundaries of their village, proceeding deosil (clockwise) around the boundary. This would be an excellent time to walk around your house, yard, apartment building, or just your personal space. You can speak, chant, sing or silently appeal for protection.

2. Petitions for good health. Take ribbons or fabric strips and write requests for healing, then tie them to a tree. I have read that hawthorn, ash, thorn and sycamore are the magical trees of Beltane, but really any tree or shrub will do.

3. May Day Morning Dew. Long ago, young women would rise very early on May Day and collect the dew from leaves and grass. Washing their faces with dew, perhaps rolling in the dewy grass, was believed to make them beautiful, thereby becoming more attractive to the young fellows. I personally don't want to attract any young fellas, but it would be a sweet thing to walk through the morning dew, thinking about the beauty of the day and the love of my life.

Really, there are countless ways to mark this Beltane sabbat; imaginative, creative, fun ways. It is time to be merry and even frivolous. Good food, good friends, love and laughter. Enjoy. Celebrate the Season.

Morning Dew
Image Credit

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Resistance to this Cuteness is Futile

Image Credit

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Beltane Reading

B begins Beltaine,
the faeries' balefire day
    ~~from ABC Book of Shadows, by Katie Lydon Olivares
                      with Artwork by April Choi
         published by Itty Bitty Witch Works, 2005

Looking through my books this morning; perusing for inspiration and ideas to celebrate the wonderful sabbat of Beltane. (This sabbat is also spelled Beltaine, Bealtaine depending on your tradition.) Beltane is the epitome of Spring Festivals. Imagine hundreds and hundreds of years ago, villagers gathering together to observe this event that represents fertility in all its glory. Fields are waiting to be planted and flowers are blooming . The air is filled with birdsong, and the skies are the beautiful colors of spring blues. The countryside is redolent with life, love and laughter. The return of spring in its fullness is creating an atmosphere of happiness and hope. Balefires (bonfires) are built, greenery and flowers are gathered and worn and strewn about. Food and drink abound, and all is well. And let's not forget the Maypole, bedecked with long trailing ribbons and flower, with young and old dancing and weaving the ribbons around the pole.

Traditionally the Beltane fires were lit on the night of April 30th, often made using 9 types of wood. People would jump over the fires.  Later that night, lovers young and not so young would make their way to cozy nooks and hidden forest places for joyful encounters. Beltane is indeed, a joyful time to celebrate fertility of the fields, and of the family. May 1st, May Day, dawns and now is the time for more feasting, dancing and singing.

Symbolically, the God is a virile young man, the Goddess, the beautiful maiden. Their union will later symbolize the beauty and fertility of the planted fields, growth and harvest.

This time of year is full of anticipation of the coming summer and all of summer's bounty.

Here are four books I am looking at today to help me plan my sabbat.  I would love to hear your reading recommendations.

Wicca, A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner by Scott Cunningham

Beltane by Raven Grimassi

Sabbats A Witch's Approach to Living the Old Ways by Edain McCoy

Simple Wicca by Michele Morgan

Monday, April 25, 2011

Monday Medley

I am accepting condolences on the demise of my dear camera. It failed over the weekend, a sudden, unexpected event. This is bad news for a blogger. Alas, no photos for a while.

Yesterday's newspaper (The Post-Standard, Syracuse NY) published a photo of an unusual looking bird.  A partial albino American Robin. I love robins, my namesake after all. They normally have a dark gray back, with a beautiful orangish-red breast. He looks almost ghostly.

I don't observe Easter, but I do observe this:  Delicious chocolate, wrapped around a lovely creme center. Only around at Easter time. The Cadbury Creme Egg! A family favorite.

Sunshine is pouring through the window right now, we might make it to 65 degrees F today, before rain and thunderstorms move in. The forsythia is showing yellow blooms, the lilac is budding out, and the lupins are getting tall and green-leaved.  Anxious for the mud to dry up so we can work in the garden! Patience is merely the art of covering up impatience!

Beltane this weekend...more on that this week.

Have a super Monday.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Earth Day

What to say about Earth Day? Every day, of course should be Earth Day. This home of ours is suffering muchly from Human use. We all know the various and plentiful scourges that plague Mother Earth. It is heart rendering to see and read and learn about the negative impact that people have on this planet. My thoughts and hopes today are that the number of people who are committed to loving and healing this planet will increase and all of us can effect positive changes. First and foremost is education and raising awareness, so that the "powers that be" in our political offices will sincerely and actively create solutions for the numerous problems that engulf our beloved Home daily.

So mote it be.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Wiccan Rites--Small Rites

One of the many nice aspects of Wicca is the opportunity to add new ideas and ways of celebrating this path.  Not being locked into a structured and strict practice, one has the freedom to expand or subtract; something new and exciting, or taking away something that has become tired or just does not work anymore. As I have studied and grown on this Wiccan path, I no longer have the "fear" of doing things wrong, of being timid or hesitant to try something that in the beginning would have been out of my comfort zone. As I have said before, there are no "pagan police" patrolling the cosmos looking for infractions. It really is an exhilirating feeling to know this path will never grow stagnant or boring, useless or restrictive.

My latest daily activity pleases me very much. Often times a thought will occur to me, or perhaps I read something on line, in the newspaper or a book or have a conversation and I have the need or desire to take action. Rather than wait for an esbat (full moon observance) or wait to cast a circle at night after the household has quieted down, I have created what I call "Small Rites". Taking a few moments, I light a candle and/or incense and simply spend quiet time thinking about whatever the subject may be. Being in the moment just sending out positive energy without needing ritual tools or fancy words. A small rite that acknowledges that the Universal power is always there, always ready to be accessed.

This is a Small Rite, but not a small task. It is not small in power by any means.

I decided this morning to prepare a small tray with a candle and lighter(to represent the fire element), incense(to represent the element of air), a tiny dish of salt (to represent the earth element) and a small vase of flowers which will be filled with water from my Full Moon-charged water supply.  The tray is quite portable, so I can carry it to any location in the house. I might a few small objects from time to time to my Small Rites tray.

Now I am prepared at any given moment to honor the Goddess and God, send out comforting or healing energy, ask for help or guidance, or whatever else the subject might be.  So simple, yet so meaningful to me.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

dreaming of summer gardens

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


One of these months soon, I hope, I am going to actually see the Full Moon. I know that she is up there in the sky, beautifully round and glowing, lovely lady that she is. Certainly I feel the power of her phases, and work with them accordingly. The winter skies here are more often than not, quite cloudy. Actually the autumn and spring skies have been cloudy. And honestly there are a lot of cloudy summer skies, most often on the night of the full moon.

I long for a night where I can be outside, gazing up with wonder and appreciation of the Moon's full beauty; the tantalizing energy that you can see almost literally pulsing from the Orb.

My Full Moon Esbats are obviously mostly done indoors during the cold long months. Usually a white candle lit with reverence, maybe some incense, or quiet music. A softly chanted spell, or poem or perhaps a reading of a favorite Wiccan passage. Intense at times, sometimes just peaceful...depending on the purpose of the esbat. I know the Moon is totally present, sending me the energies I need. Honoring the Goddess is a beautiful part of my practice. Celebrating Her during an esbat is poignant and powerful.

And sometime of these months, I will look up and there She will be, in all her shining, shimmering beauty. My heart will pound, and I will gaze into the eyes of Love.  Moonstruck!

image credit

Saturday, April 16, 2011


Spring is nature's way of saying, "Let's party!"  ~Robin Williams

Friday, April 15, 2011

Wiccan Reads--The Ghost and Mrs. McClure (And an Invitation)

I love paranormal fiction. The ghostier the better! Recently I discovered a series of delightful books called The Haunted Bookshop Mysteries. Now these are not scary novels, but they do have a ghost, and each is a good mystery. Written by Alice Kimberly, the first book is The Ghost and Mrs. McClure (The Penguin Group, copyright 2004 by the Berkley Publishing Group). Inspired by the novel The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (R.A. Dick), the story follows a young widow, with a small son, who moves back to her small hometown in Rhode Island after the suicide of her husband. She steps in to assist her aunt in bringing about the revival of the family bookstore. Unbeknownst to Penelope, the widow, the store is haunted by the ghost of a private investigator, the rough and tumble, hard-boiled Jack Shepherd who was murdered on the premises in 1949. Jack talks to Pen in her head, and she has silent conversations with him which can lead to some hilarious results. A murder occurs at the bookstore, and P.I. Jack assists Penelope in the investigation--because, of course, the small town cops are not too efficient.  This is a fun read, a good mystery, with a taste of the old film noir aspects of the '30's and '40's. I highly recommend this well-written series. There are five in the series, with a sixth on its way.

Have you seen the old movie, The Ghost and Mrs.Muir?  A wonderful film starring Gene Tierney and the very charming Rex Harrison. A dead sea captain who is haunting his coastal cottage is not too happy when the war widow, Mrs Muir moves in with her children and housekeeper. It turns into an interesting love story. I love this old film, and honestly, did not realize it was based on a book. The novel was published in 1945, by R.A. Dick--pseudonym for Josephine Aimee Campbell Leslie. The film was made in 1947. A t.v. series was also produced from 1968-1970 (you may remember Hope Lange in the role of Mrs. Muir, Edward Mulhare as the Captain).

A couple of weeks ago, I read the novel Practical Magic, by Alice Hoffman. I had only seen the movie, and decided to see what the book was like. Now I would like to do the same with The Ghost and Mrs. Muir. I would like to invite anyone interested to join me in reading this book. It would be fun to see what we think about it. Firstly, I am going to check my local library to see if they may have a copy of the book. If not, I do know that has the original novel, and in true marketing form, offer the DVD of the 1947 movie.

Read the book, watch the movie and then comment on here. I will be posting about it sometime in the near future, once I have found the book. Happy Hauntings!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Nuts, bulbs and My Special Project

Today is National Pecan Day!! My favorite nut! I found this very delicious web site that offers many pecan recipes. Why don't you try it out? 
raw pecans

Beautiful morning sunshine is coming through the windows. Milder temperatures, creeping up the thermometer are making me happy! Lots of spring bulbs are popping up around the yard. Is it really Spring?  It must be, I just received a beautiful catalog in the mail for spring bulbs. The bulb people know how to do it...because if I had the funds, I would order just about everything in the book!! Order now, plant in the fall. My husband always grimaces when these catalogs arrive. Or when I say: "I'm off to the plant nursery". 

I am beginning a Special Project this spring. Besides my regular garden plantings which include veggies, herbs, perennials and annuals, I am planting flowers for use in my daughter's wedding. The wedding will be taking place outdoors, at the old Irish castle, Beardslee. To pretty up the event, my daughter asked if I could make planters of flowers to place around the area where the ceremony will occur. Naturally, I am happy to comply. It will be a pleasure to grow flowers for her wedding and I will track the progress of the Growing on the blog.

Bunny MacGregor
Introducing Bunny MacGregor who will be supervising my gardens. I have a basket full of seed packets, and  will be referring to Ellen Dugan's book Garden Witch's Herbal for my magickal planting needs. I will be making the bridal bouquets, corsages and boutonnieres as well. Most of the flowers for that will be purchased, though I am hoping to have some of my garden flowers to add to the array.  So, expect to see a report at least once a week about the Wedding Garden.

Blessed Be!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

My Pagan Profile

I knew I was forgetting something. Weeks ago Aine at  created a place for people around the Blog-o-sphere to gather and share about their pagan paths. She has devised a questionnaire where you are free to answer as much or as little as you like, or even write your own questions. Once you have posted your profile on your blog, you link up with the other Pagan Profiles on Aine's blog. It is a great way to be part of a Circle within the blogging community. Also, a way to learn more about those who frequent "your blog, my blog and their blog".  If you are interested in participating, just click on the link above for Aine's blog, and there you will find the Pagan Profile header.  Thanks Danni, from the Whimsical Cottage for posting your pagan profile today, which reminded me!!!

Pagan Profile

Name (real or blogname)Robin Larkspur

Location: Central New York State

Profession: Home Arts Specialist

Hobbies/Interests: Crafting, gardening, reading, writing, pets, blogging, family, and many passing fancies.

Blog/Website name: Wiccan Writes


If your identity was hidden somehow, (i.e.  if you were behind a dark curtain or a sound-proof booth)  and someone else was asked to describe you to the person behind the curtain, how would you like to be described OR what would you like this blog circle to know about you? Robin Larkspur has sincere brown eyes, a ready smile, and her sense of humor is at times quite witty, and at other times a little corny. Her love of family, friends, animals and nature guide her activities and daily life. Robin is passionate about current issues in the world. A little shy at first, she will warm up to a new person after observing for a while.

Your spiritual pathWiccan

How did you find your current path? Since a very small child, I have had a strong connection to the natural world, getting excited about sunsets, shooting stars, beautiful meadows and woods, and wild birds. This connection finally led me after many years to the realization that I was pagan. Taking a Reiki I certification course 12 years ago opened my eyes to a spirituality that I had not experienced before. Step by step, I found Wicca.

Previous spiritual path(s) (if any): Episcopalian till the age of 14. Then drifting through many religions (baptist, methodist, baha'i, messianic judaism, non-denominational...etc.)

What drew you to and continues to keep you on this path? Initially, reading many books, meditation, and writing about pagan ways, wiccan ways, and the Universal connection that exists between people, nature and all living things both animate and inanimate. Learning about magick and the elemental energies have given me a sense of Being that nothing else has ever done. This path keeps me going, because it is not static, always changing, something new to learn, and I feel like I am part of Something beautiful.

What, if anything, disappoints you about your path - what would you change if you could? I think I am most disappointed about the difficulty of connecting with other Wiccans in my local area. I love being Solitary, but I would enjoy gathering with like-minded people for support, socialization, exchange of ideas, etc.  I am also disappointed that I have come across judgmental pagans who profess to be the only experts or holding the keys to the "Right Way to be a Pagan". I would like all pagans to feel they are on the right path, and not worry about making mistakes.

If you’ve been pagan for several years, what changes have you seen in the Pagan community as a whole, and/or your own practice? In the blogging community I have seen pagans wanting to reach past the generic practices we find in many of the books. There are a lot more Solitary Practitioners than ever before, and I think we are all exploring ways to position ourselves spiritually in a more personal and meaningful and relative way. I am much more open to new ways of doing things, not so quick to dismiss something that at first seems too New or Odd.

Do you have any spiritual practices that you created yourself - that are not the kind normally found in books or practiced in groups? Generally my practices are based on the writings of Scott Cunningham. I do not perform highly ritualistic or formal magick. I prefer simple spellcasting, sometimes spur of the moment magick. My sabbat observances are loosely structured, and I don't have a uniform ritual for each one. I do admit to having a rather disorganized and messy Book of Shadows at this time, which I am currently re-doing. (I am embarrassed to admit this!)

What subjects are you interested in reading about in books and blogs? I currently have a strong interest in learning about Spirit Guides and Animal Totems. I have also been delving into the Celtic Gods and Goddesses to see if I want to expand my spiritual relationships. I always love reading about Herbals, Magickal gardening, stones. I am drawn to blogs by witty, well-written folks who don't spend too much time complaining about their lives, but talking about how being pagan is working in their lives. I also am quick to acquire a book that a trusted blogger recommends.

What in your life do you consider “sacred?Well, first and foremost all living things, both animate and inanimate, from animals, trees, stones, stars, people, wind...all this is sacred. My love of the Lord and the Lady is sacred. My magickal practice is sacred, I have sacred space in my house and garden, and I can create sacred space where ever I might be. Words are sacred. My marriage is sacred. My children's love and relationships are sacred. Any time spent in even the simplest spiritual practice is sacred.

What about you or your life are you working towards changing - short term/long term? I always have many short term goals, mainly involving household organization, healthy eating and cooking, expanding my Wiccan practices, beginning a craft business. As for long term goals, I would have to say being a good and useful individual in this world, being a loving wife to my adorable husband, and trying to stay reasonably sane in this world of ours.

What energies do you want to rid yourself of - what energies do you want to bring in?  I will admit that I have had a tendency of being self-defeating in certain areas of my life, and I have been working to change and delete that totally. I am always looking for ways to bring in as much positive, fruitful energies to aid in my quest to be more involved in service to the Goddess and God (such as the energy to make the time to volunteer for some of the issues I am passionate about).

What about the world would you like to see change - short term/long term? Obviously, this planet of ours is being atrociously abused every day by pollution, consumerism, lack of conscientious "green" practices by big business, small business, and citizens of the world. Alternate sources of energy must be implemented to rid ourselves of dependency on fossil fuels, outright prohibition of "hydro-fracking", cessation of senseless wars, and taking care of our starving, our poverty-stricken, our elderly. Getting back to the basics of living a more simple life...starting with simply buying locally produced food, and not being so caught up in the purchase of cheap foreign made products.

What has made and/or continues to make you truly happy? My marriage and my children make me very happy. Wicca makes me happy. Music and books make me happy.

What is your favorite word? I have too many favorite words, but I do enjoy saying the word, "Mimosa"

What/who inspires you? I am inspired everyday by people who endure and thrive despite physical or emotional handicaps. I am inspired by people who commit to serve others. And I am inspired by witnessing great and beautiful things that exist on this planet.

If at the end of your life, you were given a new name, which in one word described your contribution to the the web of life (the connections you made, people you touched, etc., ) what would your name be? Empath

Monday, April 11, 2011

Monday Medley--A Weekend Away

We went away for the weekend and believe or not, I left Midnight, my laptop, home! Nice to be unplugged. My husband and I drove east then north to Saratoga Springs, NY to visit Raethan, our bride-to-be daughter and her fiance. And the future in-laws. The weather was beautiful, the wedding was discussed (sort of like developing a battle plan!) and we enjoyed dining at two different Irish pubs. A delightful, relaxing weekend in a very lovely town. I only have two photos to show, as I got caught up in socializing.

Just outside of Saratoga Springs, my husband spotted this: (click on photos for a better look).

The Saratoga Winery & Tasting Room
A quick U-turn brought us back to this small, but homey little place. Some wine was tasted and purchased, and we were back on the road.  Saratoga Springs has a big horse-racing season, hence the horse on the sign!

Sculptures outside our hotel
As you can see in the above photo, horses tend to dominate outdoor decorating in Saratoga.

We will be going back to Saratoga Springs in May, so I will take more pictures to show off this really delightful area in the Adirondack Mountains.

Plans for this week are based around gardening. I have a special project to tell you about later in the week. And planning for the upcoming Sabbat, Beltane, is underway. Busy, but happy.

Have a wonderful week!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Spring Friday

The sun was warm but the wind was chill.
You know how it is with an April day.
~Robert Frost

Thursday, April 7, 2011

I Gotta Gouda for my Spargel and a Fire Dancing Crow

Welcome to WiccanFarm! Just kidding! I can never, ever come anywhere close to jaz's cooking at her blog OctoberFarm, but I made a pretty good attempt last night. I prepared her recipe for Spargel (asparagus) which you can find here

My version of jaz's spargel with her recommended gouda

My husband does not like asparagus. But he is out of town this week, and that gives me the opportunity to eat foods he won't touch with a 10-foot pole!! So my brother and I dined on Spargel last night. Asparagus, ham, gouda  topped with a fried egg. Thanks so much to jaz for her wonderful German recipe. She has an incredible sidebar on her blog full of terrific recipes.And she always does great tutorials for each recipe. If you have never visited OctoberFarm, please do. And say hi to Teddy the magnificent wonder-Chow.

There was a knocking on my door yesterday which startled the heck out of me.  It was the postal carrier!! With a beautifully packed box just for me, from the lovely Magic Love Crow blog (please click to go to the blog)

The Giveaway I won
This painting is so wonderful...a photo does not do it justice. The colors are superb, with a feeling of fire and movement. She included her original "Fire Dance" story which tells why crows have black feathers. Even the gift tag was adorable.  Thanks so, so much to Magic Love Crow for this very special gift that will make me smile forever on end!!

The blog-o-sphere is full of many talented, creative, fun, friendly people. I love my blog list and everybody on it!! Who will we meet today?

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

National Tartan Day

If you are of  Scottish heritage, today is a day to bring our your plaid and wear it proudly. This is mine. My maiden name is Ferguson.

The Ferguson Plaid
 Here are some interesting links about all things Scottish. Enjoy!  (The Celtic Croft, a great on-line shop for many Scottish items)

Would you like to read some great fiction about Scotland?  Currently a series of 7 books with the 8th in process of being written, The Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon is rich, vibrant historical fiction series with a little bit of sci-fi thrown in. They are all very long books, but so full of fabulous characters, plots, history, romance, mystery and so much more. Most of the story takes place in the 1740's and is so wonderfully written. I can not recommend this enough. The titles of the series are (and you MUST read them in order) Outlander, Dragonfly in Amber, Voyager, Drums of Autumn, The Fiery Cross, A Breath of Snow and Ashes, An Echo In The Bone. These books are not for the faint of heart, that is for sure. As I said they are quite lengthy, there is violence and realistic depictions of life in the mid 18th century, as well as some rather racy scenes. But, such a great group of books. Here is Ms. Gabaldon's website if you would like to learn more:
And if you have read these books, I would love to hear your comments.  (Sorry to gush, I just love these books, and National Tartan Day reminded me to tell you all about this great series that deals so much with Scotland)

Scottish Terrier
So if you are Scottish, of Scottish heritage or just love Scotland, Celebrate National Tartan Day!!

Oh, and here is one of my favorite Scots:

Sir Sean Connery

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

For the Birds

Okie doke! Cue the Hallelujah Chorus!! I finally "shot" the Elusive Cardinal. After many days of attempts! (Clicking on photos will make them bigger)

Mrs. Cardinal was on the feeder next to The Big C., but unfortunately she fled once she saw the photographer. That's okay...."I'll get you, my pretty!"  The cardinal has always been my most favorite bird. I grew up in Virginia where the cardinal is the state bird. So striking these birds, don't you think.

Just as I finished capturing the Big C. on film, an enormous beautiful Blue Jay landed on top of the shepherd's hook. Typically, I reacted too physically before I could snap him too, and off he flew. I will get him too.

The yard is a flurry of activity in more ways than one. Firstly, it is frickin' snowing!! Big, wet heavy flakes. Grr. But secondly, the feeders are crowded.

Bird watching is more than a hobby for me. I consider it part of my Wiccan Path. Since I was a child, I loved the wild birds, watching them at the feeders, in the yard, in the trees. Since I have been a practicing Wiccan, though, I see divinity in all living things (both animate and inanimate). Feeding the birds, paying attention to them is one of the ways I feel I honor the Goddess and the God. All of nature is touched by divinity. Providing shelter, food and security for these backyard birds is one small way of forging a connection with nature, and thus with divinity.  Once the weather gets more conducive to such things, I will be having a morning ritual out in the yard.  In the meantime, watching from the window serves me well.

Oh, and by the way this little fella is out here several times a day, along with his partners in "crime". I have dubbed him "Tiny Tail", as he seems a little short in that department.

Tiny Tail

Monday, April 4, 2011

Monday Medley

April showers today. Hoping for wonderful May flowers! In the meantime, I have spring flowers coming up and the Faerie cam is working again!




Walking around the yard yesterday I found more signs of spring.

budding forsythia

My namesake, the robin, back from the south

I am not sure what happened to this cedar tree, possibly ice, maybe a bird. The bark is pulled off revealing a beautiful wood underneath.

Here is something interesting to spend time with. I found it at my favorite bookstore. Circle Magazine. Have you read this magazine? I have read several previous issues and have found informative articles, interesting writers and more. Circle Magazine comes out quarterly; Celebrating Nature, Spirit and Magic. (from the inside page): "...provides articles, news, rituals and other information pertaining to Wiccan traditions, Shamanism, Goddess Spirituality, and other forms of contemporary Paganism." 

Circle Magazine, Spring 2011 issue
Have a super week! Blessings from Robin.

Saturday, April 2, 2011


Driving through a small town last weekend, I noticed this sign. I love long weekends, don't you?

Friday, April 1, 2011

Book Versus Movie--Practical Magic

How many times have you read a book, loved it, then gone to the movie based upon this book...and were very disappointed in the movie? Hollywood has a tendency to change plots, leave out your favorite parts of the book, alter characters, even change the endings. So how about seeing a movie, loving it, and then, later reading the book the movie was based upon?

Last week I was in my favorite book store looking for a particular title, when I stumbled upon a book I have never read. I love the movie; so do a lot of other people, especially witches in blogland, and many non-witches too.  Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman (The Berkley Publishing Group, Penguin Group (USA) Inc, copyright 1995 by Alice Hoffman) is a wonderful movie filled with unique characters, great plot, lovely actors, beautiful house and other scenery. There are many great scenes that live on in our memories."Midnight Margaritas" is one that comes to mind, with the lively "Lime in the Coconut" song. Magic, murder, hauntings, sisterly relationships, love, sadness, bliss. All these are in the movie. You have to love it, it's...well, magical!!

Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman

Settling down in my reading chair, knees covered with a comfy blanket, I open the book, deliciously anticipating a fun, happy ride with all these characters and elements from the movie. So, guess what? The book is nothing like the movie. The characters' names are the same. There is a slight similarity in plot. And there is definitely no midnight margarita scene.

To read and enjoy this book, you must put aside the movie completely. Really. This is a wonderful book. I love the writing style of Alice Hoffman. She writes in third person, present tense. Her words flow and float, almost in a stream-of-consciousness way. Painting her characters with an insightful brush, leading us through childhoods fraught with sadness and unhappiness to adults who are unable to shake the shadows of the past. The aunts, for instance, are quite old, seemingly unloving and unapproachable by little girls longing for affection. There is no lovely, happy, beautiful Victorian home. In fact, the aunts are barely in the book, showing up near the end to help with a problem. The sisters are older in the book, rougher, dysfunctional, conflicted.

Having said all this, I do highly recommend this book.  Do not be disappointed that it is not like the movie. It is a beautifully written story that speaks volumes about family relationships, old folk magic, fear, anger, jealousy and the shining moments that happen between people you love, even when you almost hate them. If you can forget about the movie, and read the book for its own beauty and worth, I think you will value it immensely.

Both book and movie do share the following advice.

Always throw spilled salt over your left shoulder. Keep rosemary by your garden gate. Add pepper to your mashed potatoes. Plant roses and lavender, for luck. Fall in love whenever you can.