Thursday, June 9, 2011

A Day of Firsts

First things first (haha and no the jokes don't get better from here): I want to be a responsible blogger and give credit where it's due, so I'm slowly, during daylight hours, going over past blog posts to make sure they are credited and cited properly. If you happen to see a photo in need of a credit or an excerpt in need of a link, please let me know! I usually write these posts late at night, well after I should have been sleeping, and I want to keep on top of things. Now, onto the funtastic day of firsts!

Congrats to Confessions of a Pagan Soccer Mom for placing 1st in the Top 25 Faith Blogs by Moms contest! And thanks for launching me into 29th place! 12 of the top 25 blogs are Pagan and 17 out of the top 30 are too! Wow. Thanks also to Circle of Moms for organizing this. I have so many wonderful blogs to read now and more people have found their way here!

Tonight I was really touched by a note I received from a reader. She said the blog made her feel connected. Yay! I appreciate that so very much- it's the best compliment anyone could give me. Being a Strega amongst Wiccans is being a minority within a minority. It can be very frustrating at times; No matter how much we love our Wiccan, or other Pagan friends and compatriots, there is something lacking when you're not amongst your own, when you have to change something to fit in, even tho it's supposed to be a safe place. Because so much of Italian Witchcraft is based in Family, we can feel disconnected in a fundamental way. It can make you feel off kilter- like you're on a boat but haven't gotten your sea legs yet. I think anyone with a strong family connection feels this when they've been away from the family fold for too long.

Today we sat down and watched Star Wars with our son for the first time. He's rather sensitive to conflict (there are some nick jr episodes he won't watch because there's too much drama), so we didn't know how he'd like Star Wars. He likes the Star Wars toys he's been given in the past (especially any Lego version lol) The only scene that bothered him was the one where they're stuck in the garbage compacter. That was the one that bugged me as a kid too. Throughout the whole movie, much of the violence is abstract, almost cartoon-like: it happens to alien looking things or something explodes with fireworks type effects. In that compactor we have an unseen water monster who grabs the hero we identify with and tries to drown him. Then people almost get crushed! Yikes. That's the most realistic scene in the movie, emotionally speaking. Come to think of it, that scene still bothers me! He and I have talked about "The Force" in the past, about how everything is connected by energy and how to use it... it was fun to see him relate to that in a new way and to discuss why Darth Vader was "bad" even though he used the same energy that Obi Wan did. It's all about how and why you use it. We also talked about Han Solo being a "gray" or "shady" character who had been selfish until he found friends. Yes, we watched the one where Han shoots first! What kind of crappy bounty hunter could Greedo have been to miss at point blank range? Pft. Han shoots First! Overall, he liked it and wants to watch it again. Except for that garbage scene. Can't blame him!

Another first: This is the book I helped to write. I think 8 or 9 of my pieces were published in this book, now preserved at the NYPL. Squee! Can't wait to get down there and hold it! Happily, I've been able to read it already and have finally gotten the chance to see what my cohorts did that night!

I've started a post on my Fairy garden, and it, like so many others, has lead to deeper research on the Foletti. However! Since I have chiseled about this previously, I will now do a quickie on my Fairy Garden!

When I talk about Fairies, I don't mean a bunch of tiny smurf-like creatures. Whenever "they" want to make something seem unimportant, "they" diminutize it. Did I make up that word? I digress... The garden is more of what someone might call a "memorial garden" but it's not to honor someone who has passed, it's a space for us to honor the Spirits of the Land who are very much with us. There is a copper beech tree in the middle of the space. I've placed a small stone bench on either side of it. Because of the tree and the others nearby, there is very little sunlight in this space. I have forget-me-nots, a fern, and a few hooks upon which to hang baskets of impatiens. A friend recently offered periwinkle too! I'm not really going for "magickal" plants here, nor is this section my Italian Garden (you know... tomatoes, zucchini, eggplant, rosemary, rue...). This is a place to connect, to leave offerings, to sit and spend time and give love and energy. I'm trying to care for it, make it pretty, and starting to be more consistent about the offerings I leave and the time I spend. It's a place to be still and to listen. It's much different than the area with the labyrinth- that one is all about movement, especially since it's by the road. That is a walking meditation. The Fairy Garden is one of stillness. I leave offerings of shinies, of food, of wine, and tending the space is an offering of time, showing my willingness to work on our connection. I don't know what it means that I found a broken blue egg on the ground just before the wood which delineates the space. I left it on one of the benches thinking The Spirits would know what to do with it, and now it's gone without a trace. I suppose they did know.

I'll leave you tonight with this excerpt from Leland's Aradia:

The Children Of Diana, Or How The Fairies Were Born

All things were made by Diana, the great spirits of the stars, men in their time and place, the giants which were of old, and the dwarfs who dwell in the rocks, and once a month worship her with cakes.

There was once a young man who was poor, without parents, yet he was good. One night he sat in a lonely place, yet it was very beautiful, and there he saw a thousand fairies, shining white, dancing in the light of the full moon.

"Gladly would I be like you, O fairies!" said the youth, "free from care, needing no food. But what are you?"

"We are moon rays, the children of Diana," replied one

We are children of the Moon.
We are born of shining light;
When the Moon shoots forth a ray,
Then it takes a fairy's form.

"And you are one of us because you were born when the Moon, our mother Diana, was full;
yes, our brother, kin to us, belonging to our band.
"And if you are hungry and poor and will have money in your pocket, then think upon the Moon, on Diana, unto whom you were born; then repeat these words -

"'Moon, Moon, beautiful Moon!
Fairer far than any star;
Moon, O Moon, if it may be,
Bring good fortune unto me!'

"And then, if you have money in thy pocket, you will have it doubled.
"For the children who are born in a full moon are sons or daughters of the Moon,
especially when they are born of a Sunday when there is a high tide.

"Full moon, high sea,
Great man shalt thou be!"

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