Saturday, November 29, 2008

POEST Yule Sale Round Up

The Pagans of Etsy Street Team (POEST) are hosting a Yule/Christmas sale, and we are also participating in it.

We have a special on all of our readings, where you buy one, then you get a second one at half the cost. We are also offering free electronic gift certificates to go with these readings if they are for someone else, and the gift certificates will be good from now until throughout 2009. The special will be on in our shop from November 28th until December 25th. You can head on over to our shop for more details.

The following are other members of POEST who are participating in the sale as well (this list is from the POEST blog:

3SistersMagickShoppe - 20% off for all PaganTeam members plus $2+ off selected items for any customer

AngelicGems - Everything 10% off and orders above $50 shipped for free from 11/28 to 12/01

AthenasDisciple - 20% off everything in the shop

BellaMental - 15% off all items except custom orders, write "paganyule" in notes to seller to receive the discount - offer lasts from 11/28 until 12/21

BrightlyBlessedBeads - Free shipping up until Christmas

DragonHoard - $2.5 off every $25 spent; free surprise gift with purchase from 11/28 to 12/25

DragonsMoon - See shop for details

FollowTheRedBrickRd - 10% off of items over $10, and 15% off items over $50, put "paganyule" in notes to seller to receive dicount

GBaneyx - 20% off all items from Black Friday - Cyber Monday (11/28 - 12/01)

HappyHaven - See shop for details

HarvestStorm - 20-50% off selected items & Free Shipping on purchases including any "ACEO Bounty" cards

KarenElizDesigns - See shop for details

LavenderDragonHerbs - Mens and Womens Sprays buy 1 get 1 half off; Sachets buy 1 get 1 half off; Tinctures Buy 1 Get 1 half off; Teas and Incense 15% off; Gift Baskets 25% off; Or choose to get 25% off your total order of $20 or more; Every Purchase will be entered into a Drawing for $25 Gift Cert; See shop for details on getting the discounts

L. & T.A. Frank - 10% off everything from 11/17 to 12/17

LWaite - Most items $2 - $8 off until Jan. 1, 2009

LuluDesign - See shop for details

Magical Alchemy - Free shipping on all herbs & teas from 11/28 to 12/24 and a reduced price on both "Frankincense & Myrrh" mixed resin and room spray

MeaCulpaBodyandBath - Free sample with purchase

MeriGreenleaf - See shop for details

MoonLitCreations - 20% off all Jewelry during December

NightMaiden - 50% off everything and free shipping Black Fri thru Cyber Monday (11/28-12/01). After 12/01, 20% off pagan and metaphysical items - look in the sale section

Oakling - 33% off all meal planning kits for black friday/cyber monday and extended further for Yule

RainaDelMagick - Free quartz crystal with all Yule sales and free shipping on sales over $25.00

RainFeather13 - See shop for details

SerenityFields - Free shipping on holiday scented container candles

SnowWaterWoolWorks - Select items on sale

SuzeesJubileeZ - Free shipping on all items and a free catnip cat

TheDancersSpirit - Free gift with purchase

Tunrida - All orders over $50 get a free set Oracle Runes until the Winter Solstice (Dec. 21st)

Vermorlian - 20% off all our altars, altar sets, smudges and wands from 11/27-12/5

Vidia2Be - 25% all items for black friday (11/28) and cyber monday (12/01)

WhimsiGals - See shop for details



Friday, November 28, 2008

A Northern Ontario Winter A Tad Bit Early

A cedar in front of my balcony.

We've had snow on the ground for a good two weeks now, and it doesn't look like it's going anywhere.

The idiots next door who desecrated the brushwoods in the back of my building who turned this

into this

have a constant barrage of snowplows coming through to remove snow from their parking lot. From 10 pm to 6 am they have their lot plowed at least 5 times when it is snowing.

As you can see, their cars are still covered, and as a car dealership, that's probably not good for business. Actually, the economy being the way it is, is not good for business. But, I digress.

Look it how much snow we have! I should go out and make a snowman or something ;)

A house down the way, shot from my balcony.

Not the best quality shot, I know. I was trying to keep the dealership out of the pic, and I don't have one of those fancy-shmancy cameras.



Kensington Market Festival of Lights

Photo by Matei Savulescu

2008 is the 20th year of the Kensington Market Festival of Lights, which is a very fun (and free!) event that includes fire, folklore, music, street theatre, and celebration.

Photo by Mr. Sharkey-san

Every year on the Winter Solstice people gather in Toronto's Kensington Market to parade (or dance!!) with their handmade lanterns through the Market and stop at a slew of vignettes to watch fables and lore from various cultures acted out.

Photo by Matei Savulescu

Eventually people make their way to a huge bonfire to boogey around the fire and encourage the sun to come back. After all, this is the longest night of the year.

Photo by Matthew Burpee

At the end, people used to gather in St. Stephen-In-The-Fields Church to eat some yummy food and drink some cider, and watch another skit played out. My favourite one was the Battle of the Oak and Holly King.

Photo by LexnGer

It's been a few years since I have gone, because I moved to North Bay (last one was 2005), so I am not sure if people still meet at the church after anymore.

Anyhoo, if you are in Toronto this December 21st, make sure to head on out to the festival. There are also lantern making workshops where you can make your lantern for the night. More info about it can be found at the Red Pepper Spectacle Arts webby.

Photo by Mr. Sharkey-san



Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Luverly Gifts to Make

Clipart from Vintage Holiday Crafts You can head on over there to find a whole bunch of free peektures to download. Great for your own gifts ;)

Ya, I think it's pretty safe to say that just about everyone is feeling the hurting economy. But, even in hard times, I think that a handmade gift is all the more thoughtful than just going out to buy one.

Here are some ideas that you might want to have a try at:

Rolled Magazine Picture Frame from Toronto Now Magazine

Scarves from Crafty Gardener (head on over to her blog, she has a whole gaggle of other ideas!)

Snow Mold Candles from Mother Earth News

Natural Soap from Cranberry Lane

Hand Dipped Beeswax Candles from Homework

Lip Balm from Etsy Labs

Handmade Paper from Pioneer Thinking

Gothic Arch Altered Book from art-e-zine

Bathbombs from Not Martha

How to Make Incense from Wiccan and Witchcraft Info Blog

How to Make a Set of Runes from

Drawstring Bags/Purses at Gothic Martha Stewart

Gifts in a Jar from Recipe Goldmine

Forced Bulbs from You Grow Girl

Botanical Rocks from BHG

Gothic Candelabra at DIY



Monday, November 24, 2008

Wortcunning: Viper's Bugloss (Echium vulgare)

Other Names: Blue Weed, Devil's Weed/Thistle, Snakeflower

Description: A biennial often thought of as a 'noxious weed', this plant thrives in dry, 'waste areas', on the side of roads and fence rows, and in meadows. It is found throughout Europe and North America, but some sources say that it was originally introduce from Africa.

Viper's Bugloss has pretty blue spiked flowers, and on the rare occasion, white flowers. It grows up to approximately 90 cm, with lancet leaves that are quite coarse and hairy.

It flowers generally between May to September.

Warnings: As with all herbs, one should make sure to be thoroughly informed before ingesting them, and is best to do so under the guidance of a qualified healer.

Although there are no confirmed cases that I am aware of, there are some reports that people have been poisoned by ingesting the leaves. You can also get a pretty bad case of dermatitis if you touch the prickly leaves, so handle with care!

Cultivating: Hardy to a zone 0, Viper's Bugloss is certainly not frost tender!

You can grow it by seed, planted quite close to the surface (perhaps about 5 mm), in a sunny spot. It prefers well drained soil, and as you can see by the photo above, it will grow in gravelly soil that is so poor in quality, that other plants couldn't even think of growing there. A pH of around 6 to 7 is perfect.

Make sure to water when it hasn't rained in a while, otherwise it should be good. As well, if you don't want a whole bunch of other plants popping up (i.e. taking over the garden, as it will!), then clip off the flowers before they get a chance to drop their seeds. This will happen around August to September.

Medicinal/Remedial Properties and Lore: Antitussive, demuclent, diaphoretic, diuretic, emmollient, vulenary.

Historically, Viper's Bugloss was thought to cure snake bites, or keep people from being bitten by snakes.

In Brother Aloysius' Comfort to the Sick, he claimed that by ingesting the dried root, it would be a helpful remedy to those with epilepsy, and an infusion of leaves and stems would aid with pneumonia, rheumatism, and measles.

Culpepper claimed that it would work against poisonous creatures and herbs; the root and seed was an effectual cure for melancholy and grief, and that having some seeds in the wine would 'create an abundance of milk' in nursing mothers. He also thought that it would take away 'pains in the kidneys, back, and loins'.

Today, some herbalists use it in the treatment of headaches, skin problems, and fevers.

Magical Properties and Lore: Culpepper called Viper's Bugloss 'a most gallant herb of the Sun', and can be a herb to use in ritual in honouring deities associated with the Sun.

Because of it's long association with serpents, it also might be an appropriate herb when working with a snake totem, or deities associated with snakes.

It has been suggested by the folks over at Pagan News that Viper's Bugloss might be the missing Anglo-Saxon herb.

Other Uses: Viper's Bugloss is a very valuable plant to have around if you want to attract pollinators; rumor has it that the honey is divine!



Sunday, November 23, 2008

Seasonal Blog Makeover

Well, since snow has been on the ground for the last week or so, and it doesn't look like it's going anywhere, I suppose it's time for the seasonal blog makeover.

Neither Aymi or I technically celebrate Christmas (I personally celebrate Yule) so much of the imagery on the new header, although often associated with Christmas, it also has more universal and/or Pagan elements.

The little birdie (which is also on our usual header) was found at Karen's Whimsy and was made over at Scrapblog.

If you have it, enjoy the white stuff, and may you have a hearth to warm up to!



Saturday, November 22, 2008

Etsy Update

We have a couple more reading options available at our Etsy shop

3-card Tarot readings

and full Tarot readings

This was my first deck, which was given to me by a dear friend who was kind enough to let me try my hand at readings on her. She was a great teacher and she's golden.