Merry Meet and Merry Part, and Merry Meet again

Monday, September 30, 2013

Monday Miscellany

A fond farewell to September; what a beautiful month it has been. Busy one for the family, with all kinds of things going on. Most notably the buying of the new property--one week to go till we close, very exciting times!! Also, we have spent time consulting new doctors for my husband, and think we have made progress.  He has been experiencing more problems with the draining infection, but a new specialist has been seen and we have confidence this will provide a good solution. He will also be seen soon by new surgeons who will be providing the reconstruction surgery in December or January. This has been a long, long journey for my hubby.

Preparing for winter here has started. We have the chimney sweep coming today to take care of the fireplace and wood stove. (the cats are not going to like being shut into the bedroom).
A big stack of firewood should be arriving this week too. Cozy nights by the fire make a snowstorm a little easier to cope with.

Friday night at the movies (in the family room). We watched "World War Z" starring Brad Pitt. Whew, did that have some intense scenes!  A different type of zombie. A good movie, a tad overlong.

Looking forward to another busy week, beautiful weather and maybe even an artistic endeavor I am hoping to undertake one day this week. If I am successful in my creativity, I will take a picture.

Gotta go, Pyewacket is causing chaos in the dining room.

Pyewacket tells Pixie, "Don't tell Mom where I am hiding."

Saturday, September 28, 2013


A long busy week comes to an end. The most beautiful weather gilding each day. A walk around my yard to see the end of summer and the beginnings of autumn.

Tiny mushroom village

Petunias and purple fountain grass

Bright red berries on the yew tree

Clusters of rowan berries (also called Mountain Ash)

Our three year old weeping willow

Little red "helicopters" on the Japanese maple

Late afternoon sunbeams

Sweet Autumn clematis on the front porch
Now we wait for the majesty of Autumn Colors. Brief, but beauteous. My heart beats fast just imagining it!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Glorious Universe

Click on the link below to view an amazing slide show of photographs of our incredible solar system, galaxy and the Universe. It is a compilation of entries from around the world for "The Royal Observatory Greenwich's Astronomy Photographer of the Year" competition. These photographs are awe-inspiring.

Astronomy Photographer of 2013
 (the link starts you on photo 3; I can't seem to find a link that starts on photo 1)

The skies now are vividly beautiful with these cool, crisp Autumn nights. It is humbling, but also inspirational to gaze at this wonderful natural beauty. And also, very spiritually enhancing.

Take time to observe and to know that we are also part of this awesome Universe. Perhaps that sounds somewhat naive in the face of much horror, war and the despicable deeds that humans perpetrate on each other. But I believe there is much goodness, too in this world of ours; I am counting on the combined positive energies of all the good on this planet to keep it spinning. This is a driving force of my Wiccan Path. Honor the Universe, honor ourselves.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Sage Away

Okay, kids...what's the first thing a witch does when bringing something into the house such as an antique, collectible, something old?

Yes,you in the far corner over there!!! Correct! First you clean. Then you cleanse. With sage. Of course.

So after vacuuming out and wiping down, I placed bunches of dried sage into my small cauldron, then lit it and saged the heck out of my new-old cupboard. (the dining room, living room and kitchen got saged pretty well too!)

Sagey Haze

This cupboard is called a Larkin. It is what falls into the category of a "Hoosier" cupboard---a baker's cupboard. I am not sure of the age of this cupboard, probably made in the '30s.  Solid maple with all the wonderful drawers and cupboards. The "counter" space needs work, as someone had glued a piece of linoleum on it. Looks like the original wood is still underneath the old dried up glue.

I'll show better photos after I get it fixed up and filled with "stuff".

After lighting the sage and saying some ritual words about chasing negativity away, I let the sage in the cauldron burn until it goes out. It's a good thing to do to dispel dark or negative energies that may cling to an object.

Glorious autumn day today!!  Take care. Hugs from Robin.

Blue Jays from a new tapestry I got a couple of weeks ago

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Blessed Mabon

Friday, September 20, 2013

Autumn Bound!!

Just a couple of more days until the Autumnal Equinox (Mabon)! Subtle colors are showing on the trees and the nights are just that little bit nippy.

The Syracuse area Pagan Pride Festival is taking place on Saturday, Sept 21st. Can't wait to go!!

Pulling out the fall sweaters and sweatshirts, and even got some new socks, autumn colors.

This time of year makes a witch's heart full.  Very inspiring, don't you agree?

On the homefront this morning, our kittens sliced open the bottom of the screen on the slider, and slipped out into the backyard. Since they are indoor cats, and we have traffic on two sides of our house, naturally I went into panic mode. We have a fence, but they can squeeze under, or climb up. They actually teased us by staying under the deck for a long while, ignoring the opening of a tin of cat food, the shaking of the treats container, the beaming of the laser pointing and the shaking of the feather wand. But finally they were ready to get out of the sun and muddiness under the deck and scrambled back in the open door which I slammed shut behind. Now they have spent about 45 minutes grooming!

Happy Birthday to my kid brother today!!! He lives in Virginia so I am sending him loving energy and birthday happiness!!

Pumpkins and mums are in my very near future. And pulling out the decorations for fall, because we are Autumn-Bound!!

Friday greetings! Hugs from Robin.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Clematis and Cake

A wonderful sign that Autumn is very close by! My "Sweet Autumn" clematis, which is a fall bloomer and a prolific climber, growing bigger every year!! It does smell sweet.

Sweet Autumn on my front porch (climbing into the Japanese Weeping Cherry Tree)

Close up of Sweet Autumn's blooms
Chilly these last few nights, and now we have a frost advisory for tonight. Bring on the pumpkins and mums!!

Here's some photos from our birthday celebration the other night:

The cake, the all important dessert. Nick asked for a Marble cake.

Spoonfuls of chocolate on the vanilla batter

Using a knife to swirl the chocolate

Just out of the oven

Frosted and candles lit up

Nick, age 25

Wishing everyone well. Enjoy the last few days of summer. Soon the leaves will begin their Autumn Show!

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Happy Birthday to Nick

Big goings-on at our house today.  A birthday celebration for our son, Nicarus. 25 years old. Good grief, how did that happen!? Favorite food and favorite people. A wonderful way to spend a Saturday. 


Friday, September 13, 2013

Oh, Lucky Day!

Happy Friday the Thirteenth!!


It is a lucky day!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

.....and now, in other news.....

August has come and gone! I completely missed my third blogaversary! I started this blog in early August, 2010 and here I am still blogging away. Thanks to all my wonderful Wiccan Wreaders for keeping me alive and well!!

If you have followed me for any length of time, you most likely are aware of my book obsession. I do love to read; there are certain book series which I am passionate about. One of my most favorite and beloved series are the Outlander books by Diana Gabaldon. Loaded with Scottish characters and history (I am of Scottish heritage on my father's side), it is a great historical, sci-fi adventure, romance, dramatic series. There are currently 7 books in the series, with an 8th due to be published this coming Spring. But what is even more fabulous, is that the Starz cable channel is producing a 16-episode series based on the first book. Thrilled to bits, I am, but also a little worried about casting and treatment of the book. I am a rabid fan after all, and will be most displeased if, in my own selfish opinion, the actors and story are wrong!!! At least it is being filmed in Scotland, thankfully. Read the books!!  Here's a link to find out more: Diana Gabaldon and the Outlander Series
Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon source

The Autumnal Equinox is less than two weeks away!! Celebrated as "Mabon" among Wiccans and pagans, this is a turning point, so to speak, on the Wheel of the Year. Bidding farewell to the summer season is often hard, especially  if one lives in wintry climes, realizing that the icy days are coming. Already we are losing daylight and here in central New York we have had some coolish nights. Still, autumn is a beautiful season and a favorite of many of us witchy types.
autumn road image source
 Speaking of apples (wasn't I?), September is definitely the month for all kinds of delicious apple desserts, and not just apple pie, you know. (this morning the street was strewn with apples from a neighbor's apple tree; I suspect the middle schoolers on the way to the bus stop are responsible) Anyway, seeing all those apples made me start dreaming of apple crisp, apple turnovers, baked apples, applesauce bread, oh, the list goes on. Time to hit the local orchards and pick some of these lovely orbs! I might just share a recipe or two, and look forward to seeing any recipes on other blogs. Apples!! Just as iconic for September, as pumpkins are for October. (now don't get me started on pumpkin recipes.....yet)
apples image source

So that is my rambling for today. It feels great to be blogging again. And remember, all shall be well!!! Hugs from Robin!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Ack! Poison Ivy!!

Thanks to everyone who warned me of the poison ivy in my last post. Is there any hope that we can somehow eliminate this dreaded vine?

I am spending some time on the good old internet looking at websites to learn more. When I was a kid, I had a couple of bad cases of poison ivy rash. Really awful experiences.

Poison Ivy dot org
I like this link because the fellow is amusing and offers some good cards and a poster for identifying the evil.

From the Web doctor
This gives good descriptions of the symptoms and what to do about the rash.

Photos of poison ivy in all seasons
This is very good as it shows not just the leaves, but the flowers, berries and various forms (shrub, creeper, climber).

Poison ivy can still get you when it is dormant in the winter; the twigs carry the oil!

There are many websites that offer ways to get rid of poison ivy. It is worth a try, though I did read that poison ivy has underground shoots and roots, so it is possible we may just have to deal with this stuff.

Killing Poison Ivy?

And apparently a couple of breeds of goat like poison ivy. Hmmmm, do I see goats in my future?

Goat/Dog Image source
Happy Sunday! And remember, all shall be well!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

The Big Reveal!

After months and months of looking at real estate listings on line and trekking around to quite a few properties (which was fun) we finally found the land where we will build our home (in  2-5 years). We have decided to retire here in upstate New York and wanted a wooded property in the country.

We have bought the 6.54 acres in Hannibal. It is loaded with maple trees, poplar and quaking aspen trees, pine trees, and unfortunately a very rambling thorny wild rose. But bit by bit we think we can get rid of that. It is a level lot, it already has a septic system, electrical pole and hook up to public water; I am glad not to have to rely on a well.  It is very lovely; sunny spots, shady spots and woodsy spots!

From the wooded path looking towards front of the property

Strange fuzzy vine on a lot of the trees. Anyone know what it is?

One of the "rooms" throughout the property, middle left of photo

The house we build will be situated in this area

The road in front of the property; ends in acres of corn fields

Large rocks near front gate; can't wait to do some planting here
Now we just have to name the property!

Our other favorite property, the 5-acre former marijuana "plantation" with pond, turned out to be less than 4 acres and NO pond. So disappointing, it really was gorgeous there. The 1855 cobble stone house in Sodus with 25 acres was going to be a very hard and involved venture, not to mention with 25 acres the taxes were high. But we did think about it for several days. The woodsy 9 acres was very dark, had a very narrow winding road to the property, and there were already several houses close by with more property for sale.

So I think we made a very good choice and I look forward to sharing the story. We close the deal on October 7th, and are planning a big bonfire. The leaves should be changing by then too! Autumn colors!!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Land Owners!! Which Property Did We Choose?

Yes, indeed!! We signed papers yesterday!! Woot!!! Very exciting times for our family!! I had shown you a couple of properties a while back; we looked at a lot of places. Here are photos of four properties, in no particular order. Can you guess which one we landed (!) on??  I will tell you tomorrow!!

Property Number 1:  Only property with a house. Built in 1855, this cobblestoned home in Sodus, NY with 4 bedrooms and 2,600 square feet sits on 25 acres.  An extreme fixer-upper, it also is cheaply priced.

Property Number 2: Sterling, NY. Listed as 5 acres, with a pond, partially cleared, we fell in love with this place. It had recently been seized by Federal agents, as the tenant on the property had fixed himself a nice little marijuana-growing operation.

Property Number 3: Hannibal, NY. 6.54 acres, with improvements such as water and septic, some clearing of land and heavily wooded.

Property Number 4: Sterling, NY. Woodsy 9 acres. Very private with a pond and drilled well.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

All Shall Be Well

Through all these rough times in our family, one has to find something to hang onto that gives comfort, strength and hope. Sometimes, the events and thoughts can be overwhelming. To be able to cope in some way, rather than give into the floundering feeling of helplessness; finding that "something" is not always easy.

I was reading a book for a bit of escape, a mystery by brilliant author Deborah Crombie, called "All Shall Be Well", a very good read as are all her books. The book's title comes from a quote, though the first line of the quote is not relevent for me, I love these words:

"It is sooth that sin is cause of all this pain,
But all shall be well and all shall be well and
all manner of things shall be well."
Juliana of Norwich, 15th century
from "All Shall be Well"
copyright @ 1994 by Deborah Darden Crombie

These words resonate with me, and have become my mantra over the last weeks. And now, with this Syrian crisis looming, I can't help but want to believe these words with all my heart.