Friday, August 7, 2015

600th post

Hello lovelies. This is officially my 600th blog post and to celebrate, I thought I'd give something away!

I thought I'd share one of my favourite intro to Wicca books: Wicca the Ancient Way

Here's how you can win (and yes, I will send it anywhere in the world):

1. Leave a comment saying why you'd like to win the book
2. Tweet about the contest

Simple right? Enjoy. I'll make the draw the day after the new moon (aka Aug 14th 2015)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for reading!


Friday, July 31, 2015

Currently Reading

I'm currently reading The Art and Practice of Astral Projection by Ophiel. It's an oldie, but a goodie. I checked out reviews on goodreads and a lot of people say that this is a great book for it's time, but I think it's a solid read even today.

Granted, I admit to not having read any other books on astral 5
projection, so perhaps I'm out of the loop.

The tone is fairly conversational and I think that's what I enjoy the most. It feels like I'm sitting down with a teacher who is explaining how to go about setting this up as a practice.

Added bonus, the pace and tone of it make it a very easy, quick read (which rocks on a mama of toddler's schedule). I have other books that have taken me forever to get through, but this one is likely going to be finished by the end of the week, which is pretty amazing for me these days in terms of occult, non fiction reading.

I'm almost halfway through it and am enjoying how the text is enriching my practice.

Also just finished reading The Girl with all the Gifts by M.R. Carey. It's a zombie dystopia novel (are there any other types of zombie novels?) set in England in what seems to be about 50 or so years in the future.

Humans have caught a bunch of young zombies who display intellectual activity and are teaching/experimenting on them when the base is attacked and 1 young girl zombie with genius IQ levels escapes with a small group of humans. Blah, blah, blah. Tensions ensue between divided human beliefs and the ethics of what is right. The story ends with a twist (which is revealed all over goodreads so be cautious is you read reviews).

I enjoyed it. It was a good summer read that I was able to pick up and put down easily over the week.

I was (still am?) reading The Icarus Girl by Helen Oyeyemi but I'm finding it hard to get through. Something about it just isn't speaking to me even though it's plotline is, in theory, totally something I should like.

What are you reading? Any recommendations?


Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Random Update

The summer months are in full swing and we're currently in the midst of a big heat wave. Despite the heat, I love summer. I love the water, evening bike rides and the backyard adventures. We've had some pretty epic storms. I love summer storms. I didn't grow up with storms like we have here (I guess we just don't have the heat and humidity on the west coast for them).

Baby Faye is talking up a storm these days and I'm loving 2. The first year was such a hard year for me so I'm thrilled that it just keeps getting better. People told me that it gets harder as they get older, but honestly, I call bull shit. For me personally, it got easier. Sure walking presented challenges. As did temper tantrums. But this talking child who tells me where his bobos are and what he doesn't want to eat or that he's tired, is simply amazing. He laughs and has his own unique personality and I wouldn't trade it for the world. I kind of hated the newborn stage and am infinitely glad to be out of it.

We celebrated his turning 2 with a summer bbq with friends and baby friends. We have an inflatable pool for him in the backyard (ok, for us too) and he had a blast in there with some of his friends (or rather, our friends' kids). I never thought that I would say this but watching him have so much fun just made the day for me. I was so happy to see him happy. He loves the water and is also starting to really play with others and it's amazing. He has a friend at daycare and gets along well with the daughter of a friend I made while on maternity leave in a mom group, and I love watching him interact with other kids now.

No doubts about it, this stage rocks and I don't care what others say. It gets easier.

Right now Montreal is hosting Just For Laughs and this year they had a Live Read of the Big Lebowski. I went with a few friends and it was a really fun night. I was most impressed by Mae Whitman, she nailed it. She pulled off like 4 different accents and characters and had me laughing. The other actors were great, but mad props to her in particular.

I've been working hard on weight loss and am down 10lbs.

The past week hasn't been great but I've maintained the loss so that's a positive. I still have another 50lbs to go, 20 to hit my first goal, but I'm pretty proud of my hard work this past 6 weeks.

I've spent a lot of time rethinking my food and getting more greens and less carbs into my daily diet. I'm a believer in carbs, don't get me wrong, but taking the time to really look at my nutrition made me realize just how carb heavy my diet was. I like carbs. No, I love carbs. And they are definitely my go-to food when I don't make a conscientious effort to prep food and be mindful about creating balanced meals.

I knew that I ate carbs before, but I didn't realize that I ate so many. So ironically, these days I'm actually eating more, but less.

The trip down nutrition lane has definitely re-affirmed my belief in moving away from processed foods in favour of whole foods. It can be more time consuming because you lose the convenience of buying pre-packaged foods, but I think it's worth it.

I'm still struggling to make time for creativity. These days creativity looks like this:

I do need to find time for it, but honestly, I can't do it all and I've accepted that. Finding balance is a challenge but, like I said, it is getting easier.


Friday, July 3, 2015

Completed Project: I-Cord

It's taken me forever to do, but it's finally completed:

It's a crocheted circle cord, 5 stitches, i-cord (link takes you to a lesson on how to make one of your own). It's massive. Like feet upon feet massive and thick like a rope. But it's done and ready to be gifted. I started it as a Yule gift if that gives you any idea of my timeline on things these days.

It's the second I've made. The first was for myself and mine was smaller and thinner (I think I did 3 stitches) but this one is for a much larger circle (as opposed to my personal circles) so it's fitting that it has more weight to it.


Friday, June 26, 2015

unpacking symbolism and the modern reader

One of the things that often gets talked about in my field of work (education) is that current readers/students seem to be losing the ability to think critically; that they are becoming decoders of information but not necessarily "understanders" of information.

photo credit: Day 24. via photopin
In other words, we, as a society, are becoming, potentially through the use of Internet and social media, readers who read for recognition and not necessarily comprehension.

We recognize what we read but we don't necessarily think about what the words themselves mean. And this is becoming more and more pronounced in younger generations who are used to skimming for ideas in blogs, web pages, texts, etc. As a whole, we are learning to look for main ideas, key points, and general synopsis without necessarily thinking about the bigger meanings behind the points or interconnections between them.

Of course there are going to be those who disagree with me. And there are always exceptions to the rule. But honestly, after working in education for 9+ years, I'm inclined to believe this is actually happening based on my personal experience with students and how much harder it is to help many students make analytical leaps in processing information.

Lately I've been thinking about what this means in terms of spiritual literacy. When we think about so much of our spiritual literature being allegorical or metaphorical in nature, decoding becomes a HUGE issue and lends itself to overly literal interpretations of said texts. That thought kind of scares me. And not just from an other spiritual perspective. It worries me in regards to pagan faiths too.

To read Crowley or Valiente without understanding the symbolic nature of what is described means never truly understanding the deeper meanings and mysteries being explored or depicted. I don't know how many times my teachers have brought my attention to some deeper interpretation of a text, one that I missed or didn't have the foundation knowledge for, that has blown me away.

Is this the role of a good teacher, especially nowadays when information is so readily available (seemingly so at least): to decode the symbolic narratives so that mythic illumination is possible? Is this work we can do alone or do we benefit more when we work together to unpack deeper meaning?

What do you think?