Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Green with Self-Love 💚

Several days ago I got the mega bus from Pittsburgh to Philly. The scenery was beyond breathtaking because at the core just fall foliage. I'll have to post pictures of that soon. 
Being back in Philly of course means working out with my amazing if not brutal trainer and dear friend Marjorie. So this means a very specifically tailored meal plan, lots of working out, and waking up at ungodly hours. As I sat down to the specific tea blend she has me drinking I decided to do a daily draw. As always, my beloved Tarot of Vampyers give me a card that completely resonated. 
The aces in this deck are so beautiful and each one is expressed with a specific color. The Ace of Grails uses glowing green which is perfect as it coincides with the color of the heart chakra. And how fitting that I would have one of the cups cards, a card that only uses the color green, jump out as I'm sitting to drink a cup of detox tea that is made from a blend of green herbs  and vegetables including dandelion root. As a woman who is a total foodie, this truly shows the act of self-love that I recognize this to be. As I shuffled I did so with the specific intent of knowing how I can best stay in alignment (as Abraham-Hicks explains it to be).  I will choose to be receptiveto the benefits of making healthier choices. Yesterday I just read something about how drinking your morning tea or coffee can be a form of mindfulness meditation. Every time I drink this tea blend which will be twice a day for the next several days, I will do so in a mindful state. I will set my intention and bless it for the cleansing of mind body and spirit of anything that may be causing me dis-ease. I will drink it with heartfelt gratitude for every person who helped create it and make it accessible to me, from Marjorie's love, sincerity and professional knowledge, and also for myself. For the act of self-love in choosing to consume it. This makes me think of something that one of my favorite YouTube yoga chicks says. She explained that when trying to maintain good posture, imagine leading with your heart. Rounded or hunched over shoulders can indicate that one has a heavy heart. Since I'm on the road I don't have the tools I would really like to assist me with the energy of this card, my rosewater and my green calcite. I think I'll do a short meditation focusing on a pink rose bush and absorb that energy into my heart chakra. 

Friday, October 9, 2015

New Moon in Libra Spread

One thing that SO often prevents me from making regular posts is the effort I put in. It's rooted in this whole "fear of getting it wrong" bullshit that is one of the most self-sabotaging things I do (in a list of many I tell ya lol). Also the fact that I type like a 4 year old lol. So in order to bring more ease as opposed to effort, I will attempt to make shorter posts more often. Let's see how it works out.

Today i am doing a spread that Lisa posted called the Libra Harmony New Moon Spread. Libra is one sign I really don't know much about and have known very few people born under it. So i figured this would help me to understand Libra peeps, the Justice card, and prepare for the new moon on October 12. Hey, it's totally a shout out to Duran Duran. It'll be a New Moon on Monday lol! Every single time I can possibly make that reference I do! I'm using by beloved Tarot of Vampyres. (Has anyone bought this deck recently?? I just purchase a new copy and I can't even begin to tell you how angry I am at the absolutely shitty card stock they are now printed on! Like, I may even actually contact Llewellyn because they should be ashamed!)

As I asses an overall tone of the four cards, I notice that two are associated with cardinal signs and one with mutable. I will have to be mindful of my natural tendency to get all excited and fired up but have shitty follow-through on projects because I get bored or my focus gets scattered. This many earth cards also lets me know that my Capricorn ass is going to have to be more flexible/less stubborn. Wow. Spot. On. This is one reason I adore this deck. The accuracy and depth of the readings it gives me is almost like that of a sentient being, an old friend who knows me well.

1. Sow - Something lacking in my life that I need to bring in for more balance- 4 of Skulls - Order, structure, determination. This is the Sun in Capricorn- power and growth that leads to the growth of tangible results. I love the female vamp's very confident, unaffected posture! Her backs against the wall but she is not pressed in the least bit! And her lovers more assertive, forceful appearance. She wears the Capricorn glyph on her arm, he the Sun's on his very impressive weapon dripping with fresh blood. This pair is an unstoppable force. i wonder if this is someone who will assist me (my cousin Michele quite possibly) or is it two aspects of me?
2. Weed - What is there too much of that's causing imbalance? 2 of Knives - Indecision, stagnation due to feeling so out of balance and overwhelmed by the shit storm I'm in. This is the Moon in Libra. There is too much stress that is preventing me from trusting my intuition. Every problem must have a solution just based on the law of physics. I can remove a lot of the mental sparing in my head by 1. Looking at the things that are stressful with eyes wide open and 2. Shutting off the thoughts in my head by meditation and breathing exercises.
3. Nurture - What I need to use to help card #1 take root - Ace of Scepters - Willpower. Re-newed, raw courage. I don't like to use the word goals. For some reason it makes me think of every single reason why something won't work the want I want it to. So I've replaced it in my vocabulary with desire. That feels much more intriguing, enticing. Possible. It puts my energy in the flow of what it feels like to have that desire as a current reality, not a far off wish blocked by obstacles. I also see this giant cross as a symbol of faith and protection. Of the fires signs in the zodiac: Aries, Leo, and Sag/fired up, determined, optimistic. This card in this position also says to me how important it is for me to do things that are completely NOT related to the tasks that I have to accomplish that are so overwhelming. Because that's how I can prevent from getting burned out. So I must go out, play pool, go to the movies, and enjoy every second of my limited time back in New Orleans!
4. Harvest - What I can expect by the Full Moon - The Hermit IX - mutable sign of Virgo, the number 9 which is completion yet still transition. This card for me is the goddess Hecate as well as the Lwa Papa Legba, both cross-roads spirits. WOW! As I am typing this I just got an email notification pop up on my phone with Hecate in the subject line!! I connected with her around this time last year in the UK. I'll have to do a meditation and candle work hear what she wants me to know, which path she wants me to take at this time. The Hermit for me is also about enlightenment. The need to withdrawn in order to have things crystallize, to hear mySelf as it directs me. I will be better able to set aside alone time dedicated to studying my cards and my course work in my Angelic Tarot class. It also warns me to not over-analyze shit and get stuck (Earth/Virgo). So by the full moon, I should have a lot more self-confidence and wisdom about the choices, the crossroads I am at. I will most likely also need a lot of alone time. Perhaps some shadow work on the other side of the full moon with the help of Hecate.
I also love the fact that the Hermit displays a direct quote from Duran Duran, "I light my torch and wave it for the new moon on Monday!"

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Archangel Michael Spiritual Bath - The Sun

I obviously identify myself is a tarot reader, but also as a student at the Tarot as well. So I decided to sign up for Lisa Friedeborg-Eddy's Angelic Tarot class. It's a very in-depth course which teaches the angelic correspondences to each of the 78 tarot cards. It's a lot of memorization however, I'm thoroughly enjoying it and learning a lot. Another great thing about it is that even though it's a 6 weeks course, you go at your own pace. And for the amount of in-depth information she provides, the price is unbelievably reasonable!
I'm having a problem with a very very nasty family member's husband. He is a real son of a bitch. So I decided to call upon Archangel Michael for assistance by creating a powerful spiritual bath charged with his energy. One thing I Learned after moving back to New Orleans several years ago was a new way of understanding angels. They are NOT always the gentle, docile creatures that we are led to believe or see them as. Can they be? Absolutely! But lest we forget, they are sword wielding warriors who slay demons. So the next time you are about to blow off angelic energy as being all fluffy bunny, remember that and think about what a Soldier is and does. About a combat veteran who was in the trenches at Normandy, or the jungles of Vietnam or Mogadishu, or the deserts of Iraq. Angels ain't no joke! They are ass kicking assassins. With wings.  There's a reason that Angels are referenced and called upon in all Judeo-Christian religions as well as most all  Voodoo religions. Think about that for a second. 

Let me just say, my path is a very eclectic one. There are tons of different ways to make a spiritual bath and to work with AA Michael. Sunday is his sacred day however, unfortunately I didn't think to do it yesterday and today is Monday. But it's not like he's not going to pick up the angel telephone line the other 6 days of the week LOL. This is the way I felt directed to do so. Perhaps you will find it helpful as well. Feel free to make changes or additions as you feel guided to do. There are no precise measurements I used. 
But here's what I used and how I did it. 
7 is my favorite number. It also happens to be a number with very divine energy. So I used 7 ingredients:
Rosemary, sea salt, sage, basil, frankincense, myrrh , and Florida water. 
All of these ingredients are extremely good for removing negativity and cleansing both the physical and energetic body and/or a space. But frankincense in particular is associated with Archangel Michael. *(please note: when I took this picture I had intended on using rosewater. But I felt Michael instruct me to not use it in this bath. As well as remind me that Spirit had guided me last week to use basil in a cleansing bath.)* 

I put all of the ingredients with the exception of the Florida water into a sauce pan that was about 3/4 full of water, brought it to a roaring boil. Then I put the lid on, turned it down to medium low heat and let it simmer for about 10 minutes or so. Then I turned off the heat and let it all steep for like 20 minutes or so. Again, like I said, no set rules with regard to this with the exception of a very clear and strong intent of cleansing and protection from any and all forms of harmful or negative energy.  I also recited the Our Father, the Hail Mary, and the 91st Psalm, all of which are very useful for any work of this kind.

You will end up with a brownish liquid. I used a strainer to separate the herbs from the liquid. I then added the Florida water. I always add it last in anything that I'm heating up because it's alcohol-based and I don't want the essence to evaporate. Also be aware that when you add Florida water to any mixture like this, it's loses its translucency and becomes milky and cloudy. Since Archangel Michael is associated with solar energy, I let the mixture sit in the sunlight for roughly 15 minutes. I prayed for him and the power of sunlight to shed light on any kind of darkness that has ill intent,  to bring healing, positivity empowerment and happiness. 
And fortunately I didn't have any pretty bottles so I had to wash out empty ginger ale pottles from the recycle container LOL. Not posh however, effective. 
I will let the bottles sit overnight with the Sun card from my Bonefire tarot deck propped up against them with the intention of them absorbing the energy of that card, but also because it is the card associated with Archangel Michael. I will use this as a spiritual cleansing bath. I will also add a portion to a spray bottle and do a 50/50 ratio of the bat to alcohol and use it as a missed to cleanse and create sacred space.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Blood Moon Eclipse

Tonight there will be a very special lunar occurrence. It will be a super moon that's also a blood moon and a lunar eclipse. The next one won't be until the year 2033! Christiane of Cosmic Faery Tarot created a really cool and very simple spread to be done for a lunar eclipse. You may want to go to her website and get her lunar terrible journal for the unbelievably Great price of only £5, which would roughly be about $7/8 US. http://www.cosmictarot.co.uk/

1. What is hidden and needs to be revealed – Daughter of Knives- move this card in this Tech is the traditional page, she always has felt like more knight energy. She's telling me I need to actively and explore more freethinking, to confidently trust my own intellect. Also to be more direct and to the point in my communication. Something told me to consult the guidebook and holy crap did he give me an amazing explanation from the artist. He says that the knife she's holding "was used in one final and deadly attack and that was to separate herself from self-criticism"! And I mean really, look at her. She is clearly a woman who could give two shits what anyone else thinks, that includes the voice of negative self talk in her own mind. 

2. Affect my feelings and emotions? – This will greatly improve my self-confidence. It will be so freeing and empowering. It will help me to trust my feelings and make me more open and receptive to receiving emotional guidance from within. 

3. How can I gain more clarity –
Temperance – for me this is the Archangel Raphael, so working with him to assist me to bring healing in order to gain the clarity through balance and not over indulging in the extremes of any kind, particularly have an emotional nature since this is a lunar spread.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Mabon - Sept 23

This is the angelic Mabon spread that Lisa from Angelorum.com created and posted on her blog and Facebook page. I've used The very lovely and carefully thought out Linstrider.com Tarot. A lot of thought and care was put into the illustrations as well as the book that accompanies. More and more I'm really enjoying supporting independently published decks. 
Cards 1-3 were pulled from just using the major arcana and they're kind of past, present, future. 

1. The past 6 to 8 weeks - The Chariot - i've truly felt so divided. Having had to leave my home, both my apartment as well as the city of New Orleans that is my home, with only about 24 hours notice I am definitely feeling very split about that decision. My heart is still there however my ass is currently in Pittsburgh. One of the major themes of the past two months is learning to be present in the here and now. It's interesting that this card also has so much to do with travel and transportation. I went back home for a week at the end of June and will be going back for a couple of weeks around Halloween. Which is interesting considering the third card of the spread represents closer to that time. The Chariot has to do with the solar plexus chakra, and this is definitely a test of my will and personal power. 

2. Mabon(ish) - The Magician- what a most auspicious card! This is such an interesting version of the magician, clearly and nod to Darwin having the chimpanzee here. During this time I need to be very conscious of my thoughts, as thoughts become things. The figure is looking up, and this makes me think of the recent pull I've had to learning more about the angelic realm's and the course I'm currently taking the Lisa is offering. I'm not sure which archangel will be associated with this card, possibly Raphael? This also serves as a warning to me to be ultra conscious of not just my own personal thoughts but how I communicate them since Mercury rules this card and is currently driving everyone fucking crazy being retrograde! I've already had several episodes of bullshit as a result. I must be mindful and conscious of what I'm creating. As Abraham Hicks so often says, thoughts in and of themselves are manifestations. 

3. Future- The Hierophant- most often I tend to have less than positive take on this card. However it's speaking to me in a different manner right now. It's association with Tarus is speaking to me about working on a root chakra issues = being grounded creating a sense of stability and security which equates your safety, taking care of my physical body as well. The card is also showing that I will be in a time of not just learning but becoming a woman with strong leadership skills that is worthy of respect it's interesting that the Pope is on tour in the states right now, actually in Philadelphia tonight. I do like this pontiff! Perhaps reading the National Geographic I purchased in the airport on the way up here will give me a deeper understanding of not only who he is as a man and as a world leader, but how that relates to the message of discard in this position.

Raphael's share – how i can best harvest conflict resolution/Swords- two cards jumped out, 5 and 6. This  combo really seems to scream question do you want to be right or do you want to be happy? If I had to some of the five of swords in one word it would be "dick". Like, who's being a complete dick. This is really making me think of a very serious situation with one of my most trusted, loyal and beloved friends I adore. But she is behaving like a dick, and unfortunately those of us who care about her are starting to mirror that. I don't like that these two cards seem to indicate moving away from that because it's a no-win situation.
The other thing I get from this combination is that Rafael is reiterating the fact that I need to accept the fact that I have actually moved to Pittsburgh. Just getting those words out of my mouth just now was extremely difficult. HOW? I can reap this harvest by seeing  this as an opportunity to learn how to not be so resistant to change. This card also says that the angel course as well as the other courses I've been looking at taking will be a very good idea. This is such a beautiful version of this card! She looks almost like a burlesque dancer. Will be interesting to see how that plays in the future since the burlesque community is in New Orleans.

Michael's share – my harvest with creativity and career/Wands - Ace of W, what a wonderful card! I love that she has a fox on this card. So many possibilities for creative expansion and new opportunities that will encourage me! HOW? Dare to dream dammit! By boldly going after the things that speak to my heart and not thinking of them as unrealistic or fantasies! 

Gabrielle share – my harvest with intimate relationships and friendships/cups – 4 of cups says to me how important consistent meditation will be to keeping me emotionally balanced and not pulled in by the undertow of apathy and depression. And also acts as a warning to be mindful of friendships and relationships that activate this within me. Unfortunately this all echoes The cards that came up from Archangel Raphael's message. HOW? Wow, an air card in the quadrant that deals with emotions. I'm going to have to be what I would normally consider as being cold. I can't let negative emotions cloud my judgment. Meditation and yoga will assist me to having clarity and confidence so that I may exercise good judgment. Again I must be honest in saying that I do not like what my gut instincts and this King are telling me to do. 

Uriel's share - my harvest with regard to health and finances –9 of pentacles. Hot damn, with an excellent card! A true sense of accomplishment and confidence. It's about the ability to stand on your own as a person who is extremely comfortable in their own skin The hock makes me think of the Norse goddess Freya. Perhaps I need to connect with her again. HOW? QofP, my signifiers a Capricorn! I need to be patient with myself and give myself every ounce of credit that I so richly deserve!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

SLS- September 22 - Revelation

I can't believe it's already the 22nd of the month. I really wanted to make a post every day. But I've not done that. So I decided to ask my White Rabbit Oracle where I am in the process of learning to cultivate more self-love even though I have not done the methodical, daily work that the Four Queens instructed and  I wanted to do? 
This card makes all the sense in the world to me. Though I haven't done the work for self-love September in the manner in which I wanted to do it, that in no way voids out the work that I have done none the less. The card shows a woman peacefully sitting in lush green grass,tucked away in an alcove with a canopy of white flowers of her head. She wears a garment that looks almost white, but is actually an ever so pale shade of soft pink as her hands are raised to remove an eye mask made of the same fabric. As the card title suggests, what revelation will be made apparent to her when she does? She has chosen to take time to withdraw both physically and mentally to uncover what her inner self wants to reveal to her conscious mind.
I too have taken time out to withdraw in healthy ways. I've been very disciplined about meditating every day. Even if it's only a three minute meditation. And in so doing The means by which to access more clarity calm and focus is definitely becoming more apparent.

Today I exhibited itself love by:
1. Of the past few days I've had to have a few come to Jesus meetings with myself. New Orleans my home. I'm very, very displeased at the fact that I have to be up here in Pittsburgh. But I've had to realize that the more I fight it The more I am wasting energy that could be better directed toward accomplishing the things I need to do so that I can leave Pittsburgh and go back home to New Orleans. So I finally decided to use a present that my cousin gave me but I wanted to wait until I got back to New Orleans to use. It's the most adorable little lamp! It's shaped like a freaking tube of lipstick with the silver case and it totally girly pink lip color! How perfect! And it gives my room the loveliest pink glow. I can feel my heart chakra balancing every time I turn it on. 

2. I didn't energizing morning yoga routine. I found a wonderful new yoga channel on YouTube by the most precious Yogi named Steffie. Her channel is called Tonic Yoga. She's got a fantastic Scottish brogue and a joyous and down-to-earth personality.

3. I made a pot of homemade chicken soup from scratch tonight. Though I chose to make it because my cousin is sick, it was very enjoyable and healing for me to express my creativity and love in this way. I called upon Archangel Raphael to infuse it with his healing energy. 

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

SLS - Sept 15- 7 of swords

Well. So much for making a post every day LOL. Good grief I'm ridiculous. The task of going through my mothers house is truly a Herculean one. Words truly cannot capture the magnitude of going through the four-story house of someone who had become a hoarder.  But that's another post. 
The day after the last post I made, I accidentally got a job. I wrote about this wonderful blog post and just as I went to add the final picture, I hadn't saved the post. So it all went away. And I was mad as fuck lol. Yes I accidentally got a job. I walked in to get my nails done, walked out with a job.
 Now I swore I would never ever go back to doing nails. I've been licensed to do nail since 1993 and it worked in some posh salon and was even an educator for a product line in Florida. But when I left that career to start my career as a flight attendant I really never want to go back to it again. When will I learn that as soon as you say the word never, the universe laughs in your face and you just sealed your fate that never becomes what you will most definitely end up doing. That's a picture of the first bowls that I've done in about 10 years. Sometimes self-love means toughlove, like a mama who has to kick you out of the nest. I had to really very quickly shut down the voice of doubt and fear, just hard-core ignore it and just jump into the deep end and do the damn thing! As opposed to critiquing what's wrong with them, (I do have to say however that the darkness around her cuticles is hyperpigmentation and not me having butchered them LOL )I'm going to highlight the positive which is equally is true, and that's the fact that they're pretty damn good for someone he's been out of the game for 10 years! So this means I'll only get better!

I could sit here and discuss how pissed off I am that I have not kept up with making a post today or done the self-love September activities that I was so gung ho about. But that brings me to the card for the night. The 7 of swords. This for me is usually the sneaky bastard card and usually refers to a person's actions with regard to another individual. But tonight it really speaks to the swords elemental association of air, thought and communication. More specifically the negative chatter in ones mind and negative self talk. And boy is that part of the brain a sneaky bastard! 
I decided to put one card from the 
White Rabbit Oracle and the one that jumped out is Splendor. What an absolutely magnificent contrast to the 7 of Sw!
They both are surrounded by darkness, one is behaving like a scavenger well the other like a goddess. As Abraham Hicks says, beliefs are just thought to keep thinking. This so clearly depicts how powerful my mind is and how important it is to be aware of negative self talk. Thoughts of doubt or lack or in anyway counteract my quest for self-love can be quieted by thoughts, words or visualizations of myself as a magnificent creature who radiates a sense of splendor the way this woman does. Her proud posture and her graceful hand placement exceed poise and grace. Her lavish crimson evening gown makes a bold statement with regard to her self-confidence and defiant nature. Defining any odds stacked against her or any words or actions meant to undermine her fulfillment of her desires. The beautiful butterfly on her head is like a crown. It makes me think of how many beautiful butterflies Oshun since to me every time I go sit outside! The parrot really stands out in reference to these two cards. It's as though he's flying away from that negative self talk toward the woman who looks on at him very cautiously. As he displays his oh so colorful plumage, what message is he bringing? Because she's looking at him like he do wise to not come at her with some bullshit lest he end up taxidermied as a new headpiece for her next performance LOL! This also feels like more encouragement from the universe for me to pursue my interest with the burlesque community. Both by the fact that I'm brushing up on my manicure skills to adorn the dancers graceful fingertips with rhinestones glitter and pretty polishes, but also for me to fight through The negative self talk and doubt that keeps me from gracing the stage as a dancer myself.

Here are the things I did to practice self left today:
1. I meditated today, twice! I have to remember it's not about doing a 20 minute session in frequently so much as it is about doing a three minute session daily!
2. I made a beautiful hair mask from a YouTube video I found using avocado, honey, and Castor oil. I sat outside allow the sun's want to really have the mask penetrate my scalp and hair. My hair feels so much softer! And I had the treat of seeing numerous butterflies and the most precious black and yellow hummingbird! Interesting because the last time I'm in Bird came up to me was last September while I was in Cornwall! I'll include the picture, but of course capturing a hummingbird with an iPhone was kind of futile. 

3. I watched several videos from this chick Jo Anna DeVoe. She can be kind of obnoxious to be honest, but it's well worth it to get over that because the content of what she has to say is so valuable. And you got a love the fact that this chick is just doing her and not given two shits about what anybody else thinks! She's loving life and completely comfortable in her own skin so fuck with me or anybody else thinks about her somewhat overzealous and goofy nature. Like I am not either and/or both of those at any given moment LOL!? Her YouTube channel is the Kick Ass Witch. (Dammit I wish my phone would do hyperlinks!) I really strongly suggest checking out her videos as well as her blog! When you sign up for her newsletter you get access to her e-book which is in keeping with her very down-to-earth style and loaded with wisdom and ways to take action to creating a better life. 

4. I sent off my money order and renewal form to bring my nail tech license for the Commonwealth of PA up-to-date.

5. Instead of eating spaghetti and meatballs for dinner, I choose to eat half of a ham and cheese sandwich with spinach instead of lettuce and a side of white seedless grapes.
6. I thought through laziness and not having a laptop and made this post. Because even though it's a pain in the ass, the end result is something that I enjoy and feel proud of. 

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Self-love September – Day 3 - Fortune

I just spent an hour making a post.
I did not save it.
I am very displeased at this time. 
Here's the card. I will deal with redoing it tomorrow. 

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

S LS – Day 2 - Renewal

I decided to make a post each day of self-love September in order to have a record of the action I took for this project.  Today I drew the card entitled Renewal using the gorgeous White Rabbit Oracle. I decided it would be a really good idea to get back to basics in terms of how I learned a new deck. Or I have a deeper understanding and go back to learn and old deck for that matter. So I decided to do Pathwork exercise with this card. The short version of how to do that is basically quieting the mind, focusing on studying the card, and then closing your eyes and either going into that card as if it were a real place or becoming the character on the card. It was a really powerful experience and made me realize how much I need to do that more often. By meditating on the card this way I got several messages. Many of them with regard needing  to really focus on my ancestors altar. That I need to remember that the spirit guides with whom I have the closest connection is my ancestors. Having an altar and working with them gives light in progress to both me and them. I love the woman's posture in this card. She stand so tall and proud. As though she were drawing fresh air or prana deep into her lungs in order to feel renewed and revitalized. Gentle beams of sunlight slice through the shadows as a gust of wind causes her ivory skirt to billow behind her. I'm reminded of something Eric told me a couple of weeks ago. It was one of most beautiful things he has ever said to me and I've known the man my entire life. He said "you shine a lot of light into some very dark places". Yet here she stands and beautiful and powerful solitude. Yet another reminder of how important it is to feed my own spirit first. 

Here are the things I did to practice self-love today:
1. Though I began doing this several months ago, I'm proud that I've kept up with it and it still counts lol. Before I go to bed at night I fill up a large cup with water. They say that there are a multitude of health benefits to drinking a large glass of water as soon as you wake up, from helping all of your organs to work efficiently as well as your nervous system to lubricating your joints. By doing it this way it's right by my bedside so I can't forget when I wake up. I tried to drink four of these per day. 

2. I did a bit of journaling. I got past the fact that I don't have a journal specifically dedicated for S LS yet. I used to know someone that used to tell me all the time "baby, do something, even if it's wrong." There's a lot of validity to that statement. 

3. I did 10 minutes of yoga this morning. Again, getting past the fact that I I feel like I should be doing a much longer practice. I did something because I know that it is definitely an act of self-love. There's a really cool YouTube chick named Allie Kamanova that who has a great channel. She started a 30 day yoga challenge yesterday. Be advised, what Ally calls begin or may be a little different than what you may think it is LOL. I would've preferred to do a we bit of stretching before launching right into downward dog. But hey, I guess that's what self-love is all about, acknowledging what my limits are and deciding if it's best for me to respect them or to push a little beyond them.

4. I  made myself but on a tiny bit of make up today. Now I'm definitely not a chick you can't leave the house without make up. But it is definitely something that I enjoy doing on a pretty regular basis and makes me feel like a person who gives a damn lol. 

5. I ate a beautiful fresh plum today. I love fruit but I deathly don't eat enough of it. I also ate much smaller portions today. And since I know I need to lose about 15 pounds this is a good thing.

6. I made a business call that I really needed to make. I didn't feel like it, but I gently encourage myself to do it because it is definitely in my best interest to do so.

7. I spent about an hour and a half sitting outside on the back deck. It overlooks a huge expanse of trees. I didn't learn anything from being in the UK last year, I damn sure learned how important it is for me to have my solitude as well as to be in or near nature on a regular basis. As I sat there I journaled about various ways to meditate using Tarot and oracle cards. So now I have that as a reference to always look back on.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Self-love September - Ace of Cups

Last year while I was in England I tripped over the website of a very interesting woman by the name of Gala Darling and movement toward deep emotional healing and happiness that she calls radical self-love. (as I making this post from my phone I can't create a link. But you definitely may want to check out her blog. She makes some very interesting posts and has several classes and workshops that she even offers a payment plan for!)  Then I saw something from one of my favorite YouTube vloggers, The Four Queens, declaring the month of September as self-love September. This year I'm ready to take action on it. Below is the introductory video that she offers for Self-love September 2015. It explains what the concept is all about as well as give some tips to assist with getting started. I was lucky enough to to find an absolutely beautiful journal at Barnes & Noble on clearance for only $2.15! I love the rich creaminess at the paper and the fact that it's not lined as well as the beautiful cover. So that will entice me to use it more. I chose to focus on the Ace of cups from the beautiful BoneFire Tarot. So often as readers we associate this card with a budding of new or the rekindling of an old romance. I think it's very important for us to look at the card from a very fundamental perspective. The Ace is the number one. So this speaks to that gift of emotion, that wellspring of love that starts with it being a gift from the divine to us, and that we continually give to ourselves. it's important for us to nurture and care for our own selves first and foremost. To see our own beauty and our validity through the eyes of the source/divine/god/goddess that exists with in us. When we are able to do this, we are able to stop seeking love or validation from any external source. I think the Ace of Cups also reminds us of the need to be compassionate and gentle with ourselves as we go through the emotive process of diving deep into our emotional being. Look at the lotus blossoms at the base of the cup. The Lotus is a very sacred symbol in buddhism. Is one of the only flowers that is constantly seeding as it is flowering. They can only grow in the most disgusting, murky, muddy water. This represents the constant flux of life and death, of regeneration and renewal that can only come from unpleasant or challenging situations. It's only through sifting through plus parts of ourselves, experiencing the dark, shitty times that were able to see just how powerful and beautiful we are. I finally decided that baking the question as to why things are set up this way is one of the most counterproductive and self-defeating things I can do. So now my work is to except the truth of it and proceed from there.
One suggestion that KerriAnne of the Four Queens made is to carry some sort of totem or item to remind yourself of participating in self-love September. Last week the universe showed me the universal symbol for love, the heart, in a couple of unexpected and unique places.

 I also found a beautiful pink glass heart that I had intended to give my mother, but didn't get a chance to before she passed away in July. I will definitely use this as one of my talismans for the month.

Last night's post completely dovetails into today's. Through embracing a deep sense of self-love I will be able to access the desires of my heart and spirit and and work toward making them a reality. 

Monday, August 31, 2015

365 days later…

No idea why but the blog popped in my head the other day. Today I realize it's been exactly 365 days since I last posted. On this day last year I was still in the UK. There was a mixture of emotions as I'd just left the seaside and my wonderful friends in Cornwall and come back up to Devon. I knew I would soon be leaving the UK. I felt a lot of relief in some respects yet a lot of sadness as I'd come to truly love England and was surprised to felt completely at home there. And as I prepared to go home to New Orleans I felt equal parts joy and trepidation. So much had happened, some wonderful, some traumatic. I'd had the most amazing experience living abroad for four months, a dream come true! Made so many real bonds with people as well as the land itself. I'd also experience the absolute nightmare of my precious dog Selene dying only two weeks after I had left the US.

One year to the day later I find myself back in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania after many many years. After swearing I would never ever come back here to live! I'll be damned if every single city I haven't said I swear I'll never live in again, the universe has not fucked me up and made me eat those words. (Maybe I should start saying I will never ever go to Paris, or London, or Mevsgissey, or Munich. Or the places that I have never been that I want to go to, like saying I will never ever go to Melbourne, or Thailand, or Rio de Janeiro!) 
Oddly enough, I left home from New Orleans only 10 days more than being the exact same date I departed last year. This time I find myself reconnecting with several people I've known my whole life and who mean the world to me. But what brought me up here was giving palliative care for my beautiful mommy the last month of her life.
But that's a story for another time. 

While sitting here thinking about all of that, I decided to shuffle the deck I recently acquired and is very quickly become an absolute favorite! It's the  absolutely stunning White Rabbit Oracle, a self published deck by artist Ariana Siegel that can be found on her Etsy shop or at whiterabbittarot.com. As I shuffled, the car that jumped out was Desire. The scene appears to be Victorian era London. Two lovers are tucked  away in a hidden alcove where they have the opportunity to give in to their deep desire for one another. Outside the world behind them is cold and gray, clouded by apathy, confusion and unfulfillment of stoic and depressed sky and surroundings. But inside the secret cavern there's the candlelit glow of the gaslamp overhead. Here they are able to release their passionate desires and focus only on the beauty and joy that this rendezvous brings. Only the Raven in-flight bears witness witness. It brings to mind some of the beautiful scenes from the seductively gothic,  dark drama Penny Dreadful. Or perhaps this is Edgar Allan and his beloved Eleanor.
I don't think this card having jumped out for me is so much about carnal desires, although I'm sure there's a certain element of truth to that. Being in Pittsburgh has led me to spend an enormous amount of time with my childhood sweetheart, the first boy I ever kissed, my first love that I've known since we were  3 years old, Eric. Instead I think the card is reminding me to embrace the true desires of my heart. The death of my mother has made me truly understand in a very different way how imperative it is to embrace and cultivate the desires of the heart and more importantly those that call to the spirit. The two on the card look like they are in an erotic dance. I was really becoming rooted in the burlesque community of New Orleans and had finally gotten the courage to take my first lesson only two days before I had to come up here unexpectedly. This card is reminding me not to give up on that as well as the need to explore and embrace other things that I truly desire. Being a corporate flight attendant who travels the world and gets paid quite nicely to do so. Taking belly dance classes. Seeking out like-minded individuals and communities who have the same interests as I do that don't fit into mainstream society but call to me on a soul deep level. I really feel the importance of this card having shown itself to me. New Orleans and the French quarter in particular is like the land of misfit toys. It's where the unique, the bizarre and what is misunderstood by the masses is openly displayed and embraced. This card is reminding me to be true to myself in many different ways. To continue to explore and engage in the things my soul desires.


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