Thursday, August 30, 2012

Ten Things Thursday... Ten Things About Me

It's Thursday and that means I get to give you ten more things about me, my life and my dreams. So grab a cup of coffee or tea, settle in and here we go...

1. I'm not always as strong as I try to make others believe I am. Sometimes I wish I could stay curled up in my blankets and let the world pass me by. I'm not saying I'm the only one who feels like this, I know many people who would rather give in than fight. But we are the survivors and we fight... it's what we do.

2. Sometimes I miss Arizona. Not enough to move back there, but I miss my mother, I miss the produce markets in Nogales and I miss REAL AUTHENTIC MEXICAN FOOD! Thankfully when I was still living at home, I learned to cook from one of the best cooks I've ever known and the recipes she handed down to me have sustained us since we moved away. I just finished making home made guacamole. I get so excited when I can find avocado's on sale at the grocery. Now if I could find the extra large flour tortilla's they use in AZ for burrito's and chimichanga's I'd be over the moon!

3. My favorite season is Autumn. I love the way the air smells, the leaves changing color, the harvest festivals and Samhain. Samhain is the end of summer, the third and final harvest and the Witch's New Year. Samhain marks the beginning of the dark part of the year, and it is also when the veil between the worlds is at it's thinnest part which makes communication with our ancestors and others who have gone on before us easier to have. Autumn also means pumpkin! I love pumpkin...pumpkin coffee, pumpkin bread, pumpkin cheesecake...everything pumpkin!

4. There are times I think I'd like to own a piece of property large enough to have a multiple family community where we have a common goal to live a sustainable life off the land. Grow our own vegetables, fruits and livestock for those who aren't vegans or vegetarians. Live *off the grid* so to speak, not like some radical crazy person, just live peacefully among close friends and family and be able to survive without wondering what the government is going to try to regulate, or mandating how we live and love.

5. I am an avid supporter of equal rights for the LGBT community. I firmly believe everyone should be able to love who they choose and in turn marry that person regardless of whether it is someone of the same sex or not. Marriage is a legal contract mandated by the states a person resides in and since the *state* requires a license or contract there is no reason to allow a church to dictate the terms and conditions of who can or cannot be married. If someone wants to be married in the church AFTER they have obtained a marriage license from the issuing state, then and only then should there be a question of the church having any say in the matter. If a minister decides he cannot marry a same sex couple by the mandates of his particular faith, that is the ONLY time a same sex couple should be denied the same rights and privileges as a heterosexual couple.

6. I am an electronic junkie. I don't always have all the latest and greatest gadgets on the market, but I do keep everything updated and in tip top working condition. I'm very fortunate to have the things I do and I appreciate everything Jimmy does in order to allow me to have the things I do. And seriously, I'd be lost without my laptop, iPod, phone and Nook. LOL!

7. My favorite colors are black and royal purple. You know, that vibrant deep purple, the one that's deeper than an amethyst. Don't get me wrong, I like all shades of purple from a very pale lavender and everything in between. But I prefer the deep deep deep purple that can only be found on the soft inner petals of the pansy.
8. Over at Ashford University, I've begun my sophomore year, I'm in my 10th class and I'm maintaining a 3.9GPA. Not bad for a grandma who hasn't been in any type of classroom setting since I got my cosmetology license in 1981. (Which BTW, I keep current even though I'm no longer working in the salon or behind a chair). The current class is Informal Logic and I'm learning to argue *logically* LOL!! 

9. Among my hobbies, I like to read, sew, scrapbook, bake, and I'm a gardener in the making. If it's spring or fall, you can find me outside. Not so much in the summer when it's 100* and so humid you can't breathe. Before moving here to NC, I didn't have much of an outside space where I could play in the dirt, now we have a HUGE yard and a nice area for plants. Unfortunately, I usually forget to either water them or use the Miracle grow... so far I haven't actually killed anything...

10. I do not like having my picture taken... never have. That's why there aren't many photos floating around in cyberspace. Yes, there are a few... but only a very few.

Well, there you have this weeks Ten Things Thursday. Hope you weren't too bored and actually found something you hadn't known before. I'm thinking next week, I'll do something about my top 10 all time favorite books, or music, or TV shows, or movies... 

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

~ Kitchen Witchcraft ~


Yeah I know, Come ON Vickie! Please, not another post on how to be something… LOL!! In this post I’m not telling anyone how to be something or incorporate something into their lives. I’m writing about MY personal experiences in MY kitchen… that is all.

I never considered myself to be a Kitchen Witch, I LOVE to cook and bake and be creative with different recipes handed down from my ancestors. Then I began reading about exactly what a Kitchen Witch is and what she/he does. And that got me to thinking, which we all know is a dangerous thing for me to do, LOL! I’ve come to the conclusion I have a little Kitchen Witch in me along with Faerie Witch, Hearth Witch, Hedge Witch and all of this walks hand in hand with Traditional Witch (and I use the term Traditional Witch at this time for lack of a better way to explain my feelings on Witch vs Wicca. I am NOT Wiccan. I will go into this subject in a later post).

Most of the magic a Kitchen Witch practices is centered in of all places… her kitchen! I know! I’ve always known the kitchen is considered to be the center of the home, the place that is the most comforting and where everyone wants to congregate, so it would only fall in to place that the kitchen is a perfect place to make some magick. My mother’s kitchen was like this, even before they bought the larger house, we all still managed to somehow hang out in the kitchen. And we had such a great time in my Mom’s kitchen, there was always coffee on and she had something cooking all the time. It’s where I learned to fry chicken to a perfect golden brown, make the creamiest mashed potatoes I’ve ever had and bake all sorts of cookies, cakes and pies…from scratch! I have many fond memories of my mother’s kitchen.

A Kitchen Witch regards her entire home as sacred and makes a point to keep it cleansed and free from anything that could be considered harmful. I smudge my home with white sage at least once a week, I burn incense and fragrance oil daily, and I open the windows and doors as the weather permits (this is where I tell you I am SO looking forward to the full onset on Fall, so I can fling those windows open wide!).

I *try* to keep my house clutter free, I can’t function in chaos, and my kitchen is MY domain, LOL! I have all my cupboards organized and arranged to the point I know where everything is and if someone has come in and moved something, I can be a bit frantic until I find the *lost* object. We try to keep the pantry stocked, and the freezer overflowing (I’m thinking about buying a small chest type freezer to handle the large items I buy around the holidays), and I have most of the newest and greatest kitchen gadgets on the market. Ya know… the things that are supposed to make the cooking experience easier and more convenient. BUT! I have this habit of going back to the old ways I learned from my great grandmother…cast iron is THE only way to cook a multitude of dishes.

When I am cooking, I try very hard to not use boxed or prepackaged things. I make most of my broths from scratch, with the exception vegetable broth. Since I’m the only one to eat veggies in this house, I’d be overloaded on the darn things if I made homemade veggie broth, LOL!! I prefer to use cream and real butter, along with fresh meats and vegetables. I have a small herb garden and use fresh ground peppercorns and sea salt.

Making magick in the kitchen is probably one of the least complicated things we can do. If I spill salt I throw some over my left shoulder, I stir my pots only deosil, and I sing or chant while I’m creating which ever goody is *on the menu* for today. And I clean up as I go along… I absolutely HATE trying to clean up after someone who has left each dish or pot they have used stacked up on the counter or in the sink. And don’t use my dish towel for something and then leave it in a pile on the counter…grrrrr! Hang it back up where you got it so it can dry doesn’t begin to smell nasty.

There are times when I will use a recipe as written, but I’ve been known to change things up a bit and make substitutions while cooking. Not because I may not have an ingredient that is called for, but because I want to try something new and see how it will taste. Most times my experiments are a success, but I will admit to having quite a few failures as well. I’ve learned which things I can change and which ones to leave alone. I love it when I am successful and I’ll remember for the next time what I changed so I can reproduce it again.
The Kitchen Witch charm is said to ward off evil spirits and bring peace and harmony to the kitchen thus insuring perfect recipes every time. I've been looking for the perfect little charm to add magick to my kitchen and I recently found these cute little dolls. Unfortunately the place that was selling them has gone out of business and so the search begins once again. This is exactly what I pictured hanging in the window above the sink, and then one more over the entry door into the kitchen. I’ll keep searching, but if any of you know where I can find these EXACT charms, please let me know…

So there you have it…Vickie’s adventures in the kitchen and finally learning to embrace the possibility of being called a *Kitchen Witch*.

Next up my investigation into what makes a Hearth Witch…

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

~Light Workers~


For the past few months I’ve been working with my Spirit Sister who is teaching me how to work with energy and light. I have learned so many things, some not as pleasant as others. But as with any type of growth and change, you need to get to the cause of something before you can improve on it.

I’ve been confused a bit as to what a *light worker* is and what they do. After reading everything she has sent to me, I think I may have gotten the beginning of an idea just exactly what it means to be a light worker. I am nowhere near to being comfortable to calling myself a Light Worker, but I’ve started taking baby steps down this path and I am anxious to continue on this journey.  

So, what exactly IS a light worker and what do they do? According to Pamela Kribbe, “Light workers are souls who carry the strong inner desire to spread Light – knowledge, freedom and self-love – on earth. They are often attracted to spirituality and to therapeutic work of some kind.” Well, this would fit in with the concept I envision for the Wellness Center I dream of having after I finish my studies at Ashford.
From some of the things I have been reading in order to further my understanding of what a light worker is I've found many of the traits that describe a light worker also fit me in the past as well as the here and now…

  • From early on in their life, they feel they are different. More often than not they feel isolated from others, lonely and misunderstood. They will often become individualists who will have to find their own unique ways in life.
  • They have trouble feeling at home within traditional jobs and/or organization structures. Light workers are naturally anti-authoritarian which means that they naturally resist decisions or values based solely on power or hierarchy. This anti-authoritarian trait is present even if they seem timid and shy. It is connected to the very essence of their mission here on earth.
  • Light workers feel drawn to helping people as a therapist or as a teacher. They may be psychologists, healers, teachers, nurses, etc. Even if their profession is not about helping people in a direct manner, the intent to contribute to the higher good of humanity is clearly present.
  • Their vision of life is colored by a spiritual sense of how all things are related together. They consciously or subconsciously carry memories within them of non-earthly spheres of light. They may occasionally feel homesick for these spheres and feel like a stranger on earth.
  • They deeply honor and respect life which often manifests as a fondness for animals and a concern for the environment. The destruction of parts of the animal and vegetable kingdoms on earth by human doing invokes deep feelings of loss and grief in them.
  • They are kind-hearted, sensitive and empathic. They may have trouble dealing with aggressive behavior and they generally experience difficulties in standing up for themselves. They can be dreamy, naive or highly idealistic, as well as insufficiently grounded, i.e. down-to-earth. Because they easily pick up negative feelings and moods of people around them, it is important for them to spend time alone on a regular basis. This enables them to distinguish between their own feelings and those of others. They need solitary time to touch base with themselves and with mother earth.
  • They have lived many lives on earth in which they were deeply involved with spirituality and/or religion. They were present in overwhelming numbers in the old religious orders of your past as monks, nuns, hermits, psychics, witches, shamans, priests, priestesses, etc. They were the ones providing a bridge between the visible and the invisible, between the daily context of earth life and the mysterious realms of the afterlife, realms of God and the spirits of good and evil. For fulfilling this role, they were often rejected and persecuted. Many of you were sentenced to the stake for the gifts you possessed. The traumas of persecution left deep traces within your soul’s memory. This may presently manifest as a fear of being fully grounded, i.e. a fear to be really present, because you remember being brutally attacked for who you were.

I’ve also found out one cannot train to be a light worker but you can learn to recognize your innate light worker traits. You can learn how to look after yourself as you go through the neurological, physical, emotional & energetic transformations involved in your emergence as a light worker. You can study to develop your innate gifts & abilities & equip yourself with the tools to help you serve others. And in fact being a light worker is a choice made before being born. As a light worker a person is born with an energy matrix & blueprint carrying their potential as a light worker, just as the caterpillar comes into the world carrying the blueprint to at some point transform & become a butterfly.

There are many important steps to understand, accepting and embracing the role of light worker, among these steps are:

  • Recognize & lovingly accept yourself as a light worker. Learn about what it means to be one.
  • Learn self-care & a daily practice of healing & nourishing yourself.
  • Release & forgive your past & yourself for the times you hid your light & your truth & didn’t speak up.
  • Find your ‘resonant family’ or soul group of fellow light workers.
  • Learn Energy Skills for ‘energy hygiene’, grounding, boundaries & Source connection.
  • Get a mentor & use creative tools to energize your soul purpose & joyful work.
  • Embrace being different!

I have a VERY long road on this new journey I’ve embarked on. I’m nervous and excited at the same time. I look forward to seeing where this new path is going to lead me. I hope you will come along with me on my journey to knowledge and enlightenment...

Planet Buddha

What's that, some of you may be asking?? Well, remember a couple weeks ago I told you I had been invited to be a contributor to an amazing blog? Today is THE day! I've posted my bio and my first contribution over at Planet Buddha.

I am super excited about this new chapter in my life and more than honored the creator of this blog finds my thoughts and writing to be something they'd like to have on their site. I don't know how often I'll be posting there, but if you want to subscribe, you'll get not only my entries but ALL entries for each of the awesome sauce people who write for Planet Buddha.

You will find an eclectic bunch of people with a great variety of interests, and each of them are not only passionate about their beliefs but also their contributions to the blog. I'm loving every one of them!

SO, come on over to Planet Buddha and check us out!!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Comment Verification

When I first began writing this blog I had my security set so tight a beam of light would be able to get through. As time passed and I became more comfortable with what was going on, I changed up most of my settings. The first thing to go was the comment verification. I determined it was a wasted step, many people who wanted to comment on my posts couldn't read the words in that tiny box and it wasted the valuable time of my readers.

I follow a few *Blogger Guide* blogs and this very topic came up last week. Many people who read your blog and want to comment won't do so if they have to fill out one of those word verification bots. So PLEASE reconsider your stance on verification bots. Keep your comments set to monitored, so you can see what a reader has left on your post before it's published to the blog, but if you want to make sure you are receiving the deserved amount of comments, REMOVE THE COMMENT VERIFICATION!

That is all...

Monday Munchies ~ Sweet Potato Casserole Recipe

I don't have any pictures for this recipe...it doesn't stay around long enough, LOL!! If you or someone you know isn't fond of sweet potatoes, give this recipe a try. Jimmy wouldn't eat sweet potatoes or candied yams until I made this. Now he asks for it every Thanksgiving and Yule. Enjoy!


2 cups mashed sweet potatoes

1 cup white sugar

1/4 cup brown sugar (packed)

2 eggs (beaten)

3/4 up melted margarine

1 cup evaporated milk

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

Mix ingredients (will be soupy) and pour inot a glass baking dish (at least 2 qt). Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Take out and top with the following mixture:

1 cup corn flakes

1/2 cup chopped pecans

1/2 cup brown sugar (packed)

1/4 cup melted margarine

Mix ingredients and put on top of sweet potatoes. Bake for an additional 10 - 15 minutes, remove from oven, and allow to cool for 1 1/2 hours.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Very Inspiring Blogger Award

My amazingly wonderful friend Kourtney over at The Multi-Faceted Experience has decided my blog is notable enough to receive the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. This makes two awards this week and I've got to tell you, I am beyond amazed that those who follow my ramblings feel I am worthy of these awards. I do not take my followers lightly. You all are the reason I continue to write... so thank you from the bottom of  my heart for staying with me, even when I post things that probably make little to no sense at all.
So here are the rules:

First, display the award certificate on your blog. 

Then, create a post annoucing the award and link back to whoever nominated you.

Present seven other deserving bloggers with the award. Link their blogs to your post and drop by and leave them each a comment about their nomination.

The seven bloggers I'll be awarding are:

Judas over at Stirring the Cauldron With Judas

Nalaya over at Something Oddly ...

Amanda over at Is This the Real Life?

Alan over at Heartsong's Circle

Renee over at Confessions of a Modern Witch

Raven over at The Wytching Way

Pixie over at Pixie's Musings


Post seven interesting facts about yourself. I'm not sure how many of you will find these seven facts interesting, but here goes anyway:

1) I am an Aquarius which is actually an Air sign that gets my energy from the Ocean. Really! I can spend as little as 30 mins on the beach and feel so refreshed and exhilarated that I can handle anything life wants to toss at me.

2) I am Abi (grandmother) to 7 of the most beautiful and amazing GrandGirls anyone could ask for. They range in age from 16 years to 15 months and are going to be a force to be reckoned with when they get a bit older. Cheyenne, the oldest already is and I'm just waiting for the others to catch up with her, LOL!

3) A few of my favorite things: Stevie Nicks is my all time favorite musician and I've seen her in concert multiple times. I'm up in the air on favorite author at this time, it used to be Laurell K Hamilton, but her Anita Blake books seem to all run the same pattern lately. I wish she'd bring back Merry Gentry. My favorite color is royal purple. My favorite perfume is Dream Angel's Divine from Victoria's Secret. My favorite scented oil is lavender and I use it for MANY different things, including flea deterrent on my fur babies. And I love and can't live without my Starbuck's Verona blend home brewed coffee with cinnamon vanilla creamer, LOL!

4) I lived in the deserts of Arizona for most of my life on a ranch close to the border town of Nogales. Yes we had horses, yes I can ride, NO I do NOT want horses again. They are too much work and I am too old for that crap!  My mother, brother and nephew still live there. I moved away in 2002 and it was the absolute best decision I have ever made. I LOVE living east of the Mississippi and only 2 hours away from the ocean.

5) I am bi-sexual, not gay but I FULLY support the LGBT community and their right to marry. And I will lend my voice to any platform where I can discuss the right for gay marriage.

6) I LOATHE fake people! Anyone who cannot be true to themselves is a waste of my time and I will not be drawn into the drama they create in order to be the center of attention. Those who scream to the roof tops how great they are but their actions speak so much more loudly will be removed from my circles more quickly than one can blink an eye!

7) Jimmy & I have some amazing and awesome things coming up on our personal lives. I don't want to give anything  away for fear of jinxing the outcome. But I will leave you with a teaser that includes family get togethers and a possible move...

And there are my awards and 7 things about me... I hope you found something you didn't know before and I didn't bore you to tears, LOL!

Sunshine Award

Every so often I have one of those moments where I think the things I have to say don't mean anything to anyone other than myself. Then out of the blue I receive not one but two awards in the same week. This post is about the Sunshine Award and I'm more than honored to receive this award from my Darlin friend Salem Witch Child over at Salem's Creations. I love this lady and her blog is one of my favorites. I'm always eager to see what she has been up to. If you don't follow her yet, please stop over and check her out.
The rules for the Sunshine Award go something like this:
1. If you are nominated, you must blog a post linking back to the person/blog that nominated you.
2. You must answer some questions, nominate ten fellow bloggers and link their blogs to the post!
3. You should comment on your nominees’ blogs to let them know you’ve nominated them.

Here are the questions with my answers immediately following each one:

1. Who is your favorite philosopher?  
Hmmm, my favorite philosopher would probably have to be Voltaire. He was an advocate for civil   liberties including freedom of religion.

2. What is your favorite number?
This one is easy, my favorite number is 13. While many people look at this as a bad or superstitious number, it has always been a good or lucky number for me.

3. What is your favorite animal?
I have a few, my main totem is a badger, I have 2 poodles and and don't consider myself a cat person. Except I LOVE the big cats and the White Tiger in particular.

4. What are your Facebook and Twitter URLs?
Since this blog is linked to both Facebook and Twitter I don't mind sharing them. 

5. What is your favorite time of day?
Usually in the early morning or around dawn and then again in the evening or at twilight as it is also known. I LOVE the *tween* times which are the absolute optimal times for working with Faerie.

6. What was your favorite vacation?
Hmm, I don't have a favorite vacation, I like to travel and see different places. If you asked me where my favorite place is I'd answer the beach, LOL!!

7. What is your favorite physical activity?
This one is a toss up... I used to love to dance. This was back before line dancing became all the rage. I could spend all night on the dance floor. I don't line dance, don't like it at all. So my favorite physical activity would be gardening. I love spending time outside and piddling with the plants we've been working with. Granted, I'm not too good at it and if it's hot, forget about me going outside at all. Jimmy helps a LOT and reminds me when I've neglected things.

8. Favorite non-alcoholic drink?
TEA!! All kinds, iced, hot, flavored, green, Oolong... I was the assistant manager at Teavana in Troy Michigan and we were required to go to Tea University to learn all the benefits of tea. I drink tea all the time and have been called a *tea snob* because I won't buy or use tea bags.It's gotta be whole loose leaf tea for me. And I'm also very aware of how I brew the tea I drink.

9. What is your favorite flower?
My all time favorite is the Sterling Silver Rose. It has a lavender color and smells divine. When Jimmy & I first got together he bought a plant for me for our balcony in AZ. And then he buys them by the dozen for Valentine's Day or our anniversary. On our 5th Valentines Day together he bought 5 dozen Sterling Silver Roses. Our condo smelled so good, I didn't want to leave and go to work the next few days, LOL!

10. What is your passion? 
Again, this is one that could have many answers. SO I'm just going to say at the moment besides my family it has to be my education and the realization that I'm on my way to fulfilling my goal of having a Wellness Center.

There are many blogs I follow and enjoy reading, however not all of them play along with the meme's. So I'll give you a few, but there won't be 10 and I apologize for that. Some of the blogs I'd nominate have already received this award so that also limits my nominations. Having said all this, 

Here are the Blogs I nominate for The Sunshine Award:

Bella over at Tales of the Wolf Queen

Magaly over at Pagan Culture

Velody over at Treegold & Beegold

Sisterlisa over at Soul Liberty Faith


Shauna over at Musings of a Magical Mom

My Life Between Naps

Melissa over at Welcome to the Rose Garden

Stevie over at The Cauldron: A Witches Journey

Stop by and check out these amazingly awesome sauce women I have the honor to call friend and sister!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

I Apologize...

I had promised to blog about the recent awards I have been given. I really need to do this, I think it's rude to not acknowledge the award and the one who has chosen to bestow it. I just don't have the energy this evening to do anything other than shower and crawl between my blankets. I won't promise to write about them tomorrow, but I will give it my very best effort.

So, I apologize for not only being rude and not acknowledging the awards, but also for not following through on a promise... I hope you can forgive me.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Ten Things on Thursdays ~ Ten Thing You May Not Know

Earlier today my friend Bella over at Tales of the Wolf Queen started a new meme for Thursdays. Since I hadn't done this one before I asked if she minded if I used her idea and began a weekly post here at Aoibheal's Lair. She is such a generous soul... she agreed! So here is today's Ten Things ...



1. I am a girly girl. Yes, I'm a witch... but I still like to have my nails done and my hair colored. I'm also a licensed cosmetologist and usually do my own hair and nails but sometimes it's nice to be pampered with a trip to the salon. Especially for pedicures. OMGoddess, there is NOTHING better than relaxing in one of those massage chairs while someone is making your toes look gorgeous!

2. I am a book whore. That's right... I read everything I can get my hands on! I feel it is important to be educated on a multitude of things. If you don't know what's going on around you how can you hold an intelligent conversation with anyone other than perhaps the fly on the wall??

3. I've recently begun re-aligning my inner self. I'm working with an amazing woman who among her other many talents is a Reiki Master. I am beginning to work with energies and light. I had been having some pretty severe headaches and when I talked to my mentor about them, she explained my energies were re-aligning and showed me how to work with the new energies. Now I set aside time each day to meditate and tune into what the vibrations have to tell me. And I can honestly say this is working. Before, if I saw something considered to be controversial, I'd pull out my soapbox and go off. Don't get me wrong, these same things still upset me, I can just manage the emotions better.

4. I love the rain! Seriously, it could rain every day and I don't think I'd get tired of it... maybe, but I really don't think so. This must come from me living in Arizona my entire life before moving east of the Mississippi. Everyone knows Arizona is desert, with a few green spots brought to the state by people who have moved there from a more green area of the country. It does have it's monsoons, but only for 6 weeks or so each year. I was amazed at how green things actually are and how much it rained after I moved to Maryland and now North Carolina.

5. I'm addicted to my Kuerig coffee maker and the awesome flavored coffees I have found. So far my two favorites are Kahlua and English Toffee from Gloria Jean's. I absolutely love that I can make a single cup of coffee any time of the day I want without having to measure coffee into a filter basket and wait for it to brew...yes, it still has to brew in the Kuerig but I have a hot cup of coffee in just about a minute.

6. If I don't get at least 7 hours of sleep I have a difficult time functioning.  No I'm serious...if I can't sleep I'm groggy the entire day and will be even more irritable and bitchy than I usually am. I've had the house to myself the past 2 days, haven't had Ravyn and Jimmy has been on the road, so I have slept late, gone to bed early and napped if I wanted to. I really needed to catch up on the little amount of sleep I had over the weekend. We took Cheyenne home to MD and sat up late on Friday talking with my daughter, got up early Sat to run around and then was up til almost 2 AM Sunday morning talking, drinking tea and reconnecting with our very good friends... (who BTW it seems like we never left them, we just picked up where we left off 6 years ago).

7. I LOVE the ocean. Technically I am an air sign, but I get my energy from the ocean. I've been to both the Pacific and the Atlantic and I would rather be an Atlantic girl. The water is not only warmer, it's also MUCH cleaner. My favorite thing to do is just sit on the beach at the water line and let the waves break over my feet and lower legs. I get SO much grounding and so re energized by spending a few hours at the beach I can handle anything that comes up afterwards. If I'm lucky I can go 3 or 4 times a season... and really, I don't mind going when it's cold... I NEED the ocean almost as much as I need to breathe, LOL!

8.  I ADORE my friends...all of them. And it doesn't matter if they are real life face to face or online friends. To me they are all the same and I treat each of them as if they were GOLD. If any of them have a problem and I can help, I'm there. I have been fortunate to be blessed with many different friends from all across the country, I know I can count on them in times of trouble and times of joy. They all are dear to my heart and I make the time each day to let them know just how much they mean to me.

9. Recently, I was asked to be a contributing author to an amazing blog. Today I agreed. As soon as I get things set up and begin posting there, I will add a link on the sidebar so you can check it out if you are so inclined. I am honored to know there are those out there who not only read the crazy mixed up things I write, but enjoy them enough to ask me to write for them as well.

10. I received an award the other day from Salem Witch Child... it's the Sunshine Award. And I'll be doing the entry for that tomorrow:
SO, there you have it... my first entry for Ten Things on Thursday. I hope I was able to give you some insight to me and let you know a few things you didn't already know.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

I Am Lovin My Life...

To say it's been hectic here in the Lair would be an understatement. My classes at Ashford University are getting progressively more intense and require much more thought and research to complete even just the discussion questions. Today begins week 1 of Informal Logic and after reading all the requirements for this one, it looks like I'll be doing a LOT more reading, researching and then learning how to conduct an intelligent argument. But I have to tell you, the more I get into these classes, the more excited I become knowing that a Bachelor's degree is on the horizon and a career path I have chosen that will provide options for health care. I don't know about you, but I do get tired of taking pill after pill after pill for any and all illnesses and ailments I may develop.

Along these same lines of study for Complementary and Alternate Health, I am also being educated and tutored by my BFF and Spirit Sister, who is a light worker among her many other talents. This past weekend we were able to spend a good deal of time with her and her husband, it was  like we had never been apart. We picked up right where we left off 6 years ago when we moved away from MD. From her, I'm learning to be more peaceful in my daily thoughts. And until just a few minutes ago, I hadn't realized her instructions had already begun to manifest in me. Something that would have sent me off on a loud tangent last week, had a lesser effect on me tonight. Don't get me wrong, I'm upset and angry about the comments some in the republican party are making, but I didn't blow a gasket about it.

I also am loving my connection to my Pagan Community. Yes, there has also been some controversy surrounding the *Pagan Community* of late, but the community I am speaking about are the people I have contact with on a regular basis. The people I can count on to work a prayer tree, or to give sound advice, or to laugh at something silly I've said or posted. These are my Sisters and Brothers, each of them as individual as a snowflake, but each of them have a heart of gold and I know we can count on each other in any given circumstance.

Autumn is in the air... can you feel it yet? I can, there is just a tiny little difference in the temperature, the trees are ever so slowly beginning to change into their glorious golds and reds. Soon the leaves will begin to fall and my fur babies will have a ball playing in them. Calliope LOVES to run through them and chase the ones she has thrown up in the air. With Autumn comes my favorite holiday...Samhain! I've been asked to join a group of creative women who for the entire month of October are going to be blogging, having give aways, and celebrating as only Witches can celebrate. Keep an eye on Aoibheal's Lair for the link to Samhain Sirens for all the fun and groovy things we have to share.

After Samhain, I'm looking forward to Thanksgiving. NOT because of the traditional celebration. My Thanksgiving is a bit different. Yes, it still falls on the same date/weekend as the secular holiday, but we celebrate family. This year my daughter Mylia and Cheyenne are going to come down from MD to spend the weekend with us. And we've also invited Amanda and her husband to join us as well. I LOVE having family around me during the holidays. My fondest memories are of the huge family get togethers we would have at my parents ranch the BobALu. I won't lie, it's been not only challenging but sometimes depressing as well to spend a day mostly alone when at any given time there were 25 or more people around the tables. If everyone is able to come for dinner, we should have about 10 people ... I can't wait!!

OH! I can also add *copy editor* to my resume! I'll be working with an up and coming author writing under the pseudonym Deneise Sharvai who writes some amazing fiction. I've seen some of her poems and now I am honored to be able to see more of her work. This is something entirely new and different for me, which I am hoping will help me with my desire to move Aoibheal's Lair in a different direction. There are MANY changes coming to our personal life and to Aoibheal's Lair. I hope you all will stick around to see where this new journey is going to take us...

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Burning of Isobel Key Cover Reveal

Last week I was fortunate enough to interview my personal friend and author Jen McConnel during which I gave you all a hint or two about her upcoming book *The Burning of Isobel Key*. Well, I'm excited to let you know today is the day she will be revealing the cover! BUT... before it goes public this afternoon on Goodreads and facebook, I've got it right here on Aoibheal's Lair. So without further ado, I give you the cover for The Burning of Isobel Key:


The Burning of Isobel Key blurb:

When Lou travels to Scotland, she’s a mess.  She’s twenty-six, unemployed, and unsure of herself.  It doesn’t help that she’s traveling with Tammy, her best friend, who is everything Lou is not.

At first, the trip pushes Lou towards the brink of depression, but then she meets Brian, a handsome local tour guide.  When Brian tells the tourists about the countless witches burned in Scotland, Lou starts to listen.  And when she discovers information about Isobel Key, one of the victims of the seventeenth century, Lou finds renewed purpose.

She sets out to learn the truth of the condemned witch, but she isn’t prepared for the knowledge that waits for her.  Lou must face her demons if she has any hope of righting the wrongs of the past.


Excerpt from The Burning of Isobel Key:


     She was standing on a spot near the sea in a place that looked like St. Andrews.  Lou recognized the Old Course over to her left, and realized that she was somewhere near the modern edge of the town.  In her dream, however, she realized that she was somewhere much more rural: other than the Old Course and the road running alongside it, there were no man-made structures.  No lights winked out at her from the darkness, and everything was shrouded in a strange mist.

     Lou heard a noise coming from the direction of town.  She froze, knowing that she would not be seen in a dream, yet she was unaccountably afraid of the sounds coming her way.

     The sounds grew more distinct, and Lou saw the source of the noise.  A mass of people was surging up the road, headed in her direction.  They carried lit torches and shouted and jostled each other.  Towards the center of the group, the men and women were carrying something.  It wasn’t until they dropped part of their burden that Lou could make out the shape of human bones.

     The bones were charred, as if they had sat for hours in the fire.  She thought she knew who they belonged to, and her suspicions were confirmed when a man called out “The witch’s soul is back with her master!”  His words were answered with a cheer, and Lou watched, nauseous, as some of the boys in the group each picked up a bone and began to batter each other as if they were playing with wooden swords.  A dog ran by their game and scooped a bony hand into its mouth.

     The skull slipped to the ground, and instead of bending to retrieve it, the woman who carried it began to kick it in front of her like a soccer ball.  Lou wanted to cover her eyes, to scream, to cry at them to stop, but she was frozen in the dream, unable to look away, unable to stop listening.

     The mob passed without noticing her, but one of the mangy dogs trotting along at the edge of the crowd stopped directly in front of her and howled once, low and menacing, before continuing along its way.  Still unable to move her body, Lou watched as the crowd passed her.  They stopped some hundred yards away, and Lou watched the flurry of shovels, digging into the earth.  Squinting in the dark, Lou was just able to make out a thin dirt path, crossing the main road from St. Andrews, at the spot where the mob had stopped.  “The crossroads!”  With that frenzied thought, she was spinning out of the dream, pulled into absolute darkness.

     She shot up in bed, wild eyed, and looked across the room at Tammy, also wide awake and staring.

     Tammy began to stutter, her face white with terror.  “I had an awful dream, Lou.  Awful!  There were people, and bones, so many bones, and they were treating the bones like toys!  They even let the dog gnaw on a hand!” She shuddered.  “It was so awful, I couldn’t stand it.”

     Lou crossed the room to her best friend.  “I know.  I think I dreamed the same thing.  Did you see where they buried the bones?"

     Tammy shook her head, frantically.  “No, I didn’t see them bury anything.  I just saw them being awful!” Lou squeezed her shoulders, trying to reassure her.

     “I saw them.  I saw them too,” she murmured, soothingly.  “But I saw more.  I know where they buried Isobel’s bones!” 


About the Author:

Jen McConnel first began writing poetry as a child.  Since then, her words have appeared in a variety of magazines and journals, including Sagewoman, PanGaia, and The Storyteller (where she won the people’s choice 3rd place award for her poem, “Luna”).

She is also an active reviewer for Voices of Youth Advocates (VOYA), and proud member of SCBWI, NCWN, and SCWW.

The Burning of Isobel Key is her first novel.  She also writes YA fantasy.



You can also find Jen here:

Monday, August 20, 2012

Monday Munchies ~ Bruschetta with Tomato and Basil

Sorry I'm late posting today's recipe...the trip to Maryland this past weekend was a whirlwind. I'm still trying to ground and get things back on track.

I make this all the time and my son in law thinks it's the best thing I've ever made for him...


6 or 7 ripe plum tomatoes (about 1 1/2 lbs)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
6-8 fresh basil leaves, chopped.
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1 baguette French bread or similar Italian bread
1/4 cup olive oil

METHOD

1 Prepare the tomatoes first. Parboil the tomatoes for one minute in boiling water that has just been removed from the burner. Drain. Using a sharp small knife, remove the skins of the tomatoes. (If the tomatoes are too hot, you can protect your finger tips by rubbing them with an ice cube between tomatoes.) Once the tomatoes are peeled, cut them in halves or quarters and remove the seeds and juice from their centers. Also cut out and discard the stem area. Why use plum tomatoes instead of regular tomatoes? The skins are much thicker and there are fewer seeds and less juice.

2 Make sure there is a top rack in place in your oven. Turn on the oven to 450°F to preheat.

3 While the oven is heating, chop up the tomatoes finely. Put tomatoes, garlic, 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, vinegar in a bowl and mix. Add the chopped basil. Add salt and pepper to taste.

4 Slice the baguette on a diagonal about 1/2 inch thick slices. Coat one side of each slice with olive oil using a pastry brush. Place on a cooking sheet, olive oil side down. You will want to toast them in the top rack in your oven, so you may need to do these in batches depending on the size of your oven. Once the oven has reached 450°F, place a tray of bread slices in the oven on the top rack. Toast for 5-6 minutes, until the bread just begins to turn golden brown.

Alternatively, you can toast the bread without coating it in olive oil first. Toast on a griddle for 1 minute on each side. Take a sharp knife and score each slice 3 times. Rub some garlic in the slices and drizzle half a teaspoon of olive oil on each slice. This is the more traditional method of making bruschetta.

5 Align the bread on a serving platter, olive oil side up. Either place the tomato topping in a bowl separately with a spoon for people to serve themselves over the bread, or place some topping on each slice of bread and serve. If you top each slice with the tomatoes, do it right before serving or the bread may get soggy.
Serves 6-10 as an appetizer. Or 3-4 for lunch (delicious served with cottage cheese on the side.)

Yield: Makes 24 small slices.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Monday Munchies ~ Lasagna Rolls

These are a bit time consuming but well worth the effort. I've made these on many occasions and my family LOVES them. Add a green salad and a glass of red wine and VIOLA! Dinner is done... 


Sauce:
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups whole milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
Pinch ground nutmeg

Lasagna:
1 (15-ounce) container whole milk ricotta cheese
1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed dry
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
3 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto, chopped
1 large egg, beaten to blend
3/4 teaspoon salt, plus more for salting water
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
12 uncooked lasagna noodles
2 cups marinara sauce
1 cup shredded mozzarella (about 4 ounces)

To make the sauce: Melt the butter in a heavy medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the flour and whisk for 3 minutes. Whisk in the milk. Increase the heat to medium-high. Whisk the sauce until it comes to a simmer and is thick and smooth, about 3 minutes. Whisk the salt, pepper, and nutmeg into the béchamel sauce.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Whisk the ricotta, spinach, 1 cup Parmesan, prosciutto, egg, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl to blend.

Add a tablespoon or 2 of oil to a large pot of boiling salted water. Boil the noodles until just tender but still firm to bite. Drain. Arrange the noodles in a single layer on a baking sheet to prevent them from sticking.

Butter a 13-by-9-by-2-inch glass baking dish. Pour the béchamel sauce over the bottom of the prepared dish. 

Lay out 4 lasagna noodles on a work surface, then spread about 3 tablespoons of ricotta mixture evenly over each noodle. 

Starting at 1 end, roll each noodle like a jelly roll. 

Lay the lasagna rolls seam side down, without touching, atop the béchamel sauce in the dish. Repeat with the remaining noodles and ricotta mixture. 

Spoon 1 cup of marinara sauce over the lasagna rolls. Sprinkle the mozzarella and remaining 2 tablespoons of Parmesan over the lasagna rolls. 
Cover tightly with foil. Bake until heated through and the sauce bubbles, about 20 minutes. Uncover and bake until the cheese on top becomes golden, about 15 minutes longer. Let stand for 10 minutes. 

Meanwhile, heat the remaining marinara sauce in a heavy small saucepan over medium heat until hot, and serve alongside.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Confused Much?? Or Where Do YOU Live?? LOL!!

I was chatting with someone from one of my classes over at Ashford University a little earlier today about the logistics of the time zone we use for posting our assignments. She lives here in NC, just up the road in Fayetteville. When she asked me exactly where I lived and I told her I lived outside of Fayetteville, she got all offensive and crap...

"What do you mean you don't live in Fayetteville??  I live in Fayetteville and it shows up on my computer when I add things to my Facebook profile that I live in Fayetteville", she says to me... Ummm, OK, I'm happy for you. However, I live in Hope Mills, NC and if ya look you can plainly see where my computer says I live in Hope Mills and NOT Fayetteville...sheesh, some people... LOL!!

Anyway to make a short story even shorter and somewhat funny, I asked her to tag her location to see what it said, and I'd do the same... Lo and behold... she lives in Fayetteville and I live in Hope Mills... who'd a thunk it??

Jen McConnel ~ Author, Priestess, and Friend...

A few weeks ago, I hinted at some new and exciting changes coming to Aoibheal's Lair. I am more than pleased my Darlins, to be able to bring the first of many to you today with this entry.

My very dear friend has made some amazing transitions in the past year and I've been fortunate enough to be able to experience some of them as they happen. I met Jen just over 3 years ago at a meeting for Triangle Pagan's Book Club. We hit it off almost immediately and our friendship has grown and developed into more than just a monthly get together at book club. Today, she has accomplished many things, traveled to some exotic destinations and not only written but self published her very first book. A few weeks ago, I was fortunate enough to be able to sit down talk to Jen about her book and the path she has walked...


Hi Jen! And welcome to Aoibheal's Lair.  I’d like to start out with a little about Jen, sort of a mini bio and then have you answer the questions…

Me in a nutshell: I grew up in Michigan, where I alternately thought I was going to be a classical archaeologist, an actress, a teacher, a journalist, or a gypsy. When I was younger, I wanted to write, but somewhere in high school I stopped believing that that would be a viable career path. The words didn’t go away, though, and I’m glad I’ve found my way back. I went to Western Michigan University where I studied English and History, and I started teaching middle school after I graduated. Somewhere in there I met an amazing man, got married, moved to North Carolina, and went back to school online for my MS in Library Science (while still working full-time in a public middle school). That was around the same time that I started writing seriously, and I’m still waiting to see where this journey will lead me.

(If you want to know more, you can follow me on twitter @ProDeaWriter, or follow my blog: jennifermcconnel.wordpress.com)

1. When I first met you, I think you were teaching middle school. How did you go from teaching to not only writing some very cool YA fiction, but to now being a self-published author?

It really was a long time coming. I think the seed was planted three years ago when I hosted author Brian Davis to do a writing workshop with my students. He talked about the leap of faith he took for his writing by quitting his job and making the switch to writing full time. I really wanted to take a similar leap, but it took two more years of teaching all day and writing in the evenings when I got home to find the bravery (or idiocy) needed to make that dream a reality. A year ago, I left teaching full time to write, and it’s been an amazing journey. I’m lucky that I still love teaching, and I have been able to teach part time at the local community college as well as for an online university, but writing has been my primary focus for over a year. It’s great!

2. Can you tell us about the journey that eventually led you to Paganism, and a little about the path you're currently on?

{Laughs} I actually stumbled into Paganism when I was seventeen. I was working in a bookstore that year, and I bought my first tarot deck at the same time that I purchased Marion Zimmer Bradley’s Mists of Avalon. Those two purchases were just impulsive, but it was like coming home. I started to read everything I could get my hands on, and for a long time I ignored the craft aspect of Paganism and focused on scholarship and archetype. My faith has evolved with me, and now more than a decade after I wandered into it, I’m dedicated to Isis and I have discovered that I actually love participating in group rituals (I worked alone for most of my initial explorations, and I still have my individual rituals, but I have come to really appreciate community.) I’m a goddess-centric kitchen and hearth Witch, if that makes any sense.

3. Your works have been published in a few Pagan magazines. Can you tell us how you felt when you saw your first publication?

Oh, my gosh, it was amazing. My first poem to appear in a Pagan magazine was in PanGaia, and I went through the roof when I got the call that it had been accepted. It’s a light, frolicking poem called “Ostara”, and it was so cool to see it in print. I’d been reading SageWoman for years, and it was a long-held dream of mind to appear in one of the BBI Media publications. Since then, I’ve had two non-fiction pieces accepted in SageWoman, which is a dream come true. I’ve also started reviewing books and other media for SageWoman, and I’m so happy to be a part of such an excellent publication.

4. Are you active in your local Pagan community? And do you have any goals you’d like to accomplish in that community?

I wasn’t until we moved to North Carolina, and even then, it took me a few years to plug in. Now I’m thrilled to participate and contribute. Until now, I’ve mostly been a participant rather than a leader, attending a Pagan book club and participating in open circles, but in the fall, I am starting a Goddess-centric group, and I’m really excited to see where that goes. Right now, the plan is to simply gather together to work through the rituals in Patricia Monaghan’s Goddess Path, which will take a while, but after that, anything’s possible. One of my ongoing goals is to find ways to give back and connect on a deeper level with the rich Pagan community, both locally and globally, and I’ve also volunteered to edit an upcoming Queen of Heaven anthology for Bibliotheca Alexandrina (http://neosalexandria.org/bibliotheca-alexandrina/current-titles/). It’s great to be bringing my faith to the forefront and merging it with my writing!

5. Last year you were able to travel to Egypt. Did your experience there change anything about how you look at your spiritual path?

We had the amazing fortune to travel to Egypt weeks before the revolution began, and that trip has shifted my faith in a dramatic way. Before, I was very in-tune to archetypes (often at the expense of the individual deities). But in Egypt, both Isis and Sekhmet made their presences very clear to me, and I started to practice a more intimate form of Paganism. I dedicated to Isis when I returned home (although she’d always been one of the goddesses of my heart) and not a day goes by that I don’t think about my experience in Egypt. If you ever get the chance to go there, do it! I’ve never met people anywhere as kind as every person I met in Egypt, and I’ve never felt as much magic and divine presence as I did at Isis’s temple on the island of Philae. It was a life-changing experience, and I feel so blessed that I was able to go.

6. How did that trip inspire you in your desire to write instead of teach?

You are way too in-tune!! {Laughs}. Actually, before the trip, I had started to toy with the possibility of leaving teaching to write full-time, but I was too scared to make the commitment. After I got home from Egypt, it took a few months, but by that spring, I had decided that I HAD to take this chance. My dedicancy to Isis ran parallel to the major career shift in my life, and everything really has been different since. I loved teaching, don’t get me wrong, and I’m so glad that I can still share my enthusiasm with the students at the community college, but that risk was the best thing I’ve ever done in my life. Things have been hard since, but they’ve felt RIGHT. Again, I’m very thankful to have stumbled upon my path.

7. So, you have your first eBook coming out in September. When is it going to be available?

That depends on formatting. Since I’m still learning the ropes with this book, I can’t really say how long it will take to get the manuscript properly formatted and loaded. Luckily, my sweet husband has offered to help, so that’s one less thing I have to worry about! What I do know is that the book will be available in e-book format through both Amazon and Barnes & Noble (and hopefully Apple at some point, but that’s later down the road). I’m also going to have a paperback copy available through Amazon, for those folks would rather read that way. I love both mediums, and I know that a lot of readers do, too, so I want to make my book available in as many forms as possible. I’m hoping for a late September or early October release date, and I’ll certainly keep you posted.

8. Any chance you can tell us a little about the new book?

I’d love to! The novel is called The Burning of Isobel Key. It’s the story of two women: Isobel, who was burned for witchcraft in seventeenth century Scotland, and Lou, a modern woman in the midst of a crisis. Lou is twenty-six, unemployed, and feels worthless. When she has the chance to travel to Scotland with her best friend, she doesn’t realize that the trip will offer her the chance to change her life. She becomes interested in the stories of the Scottish witch trials (which lasted into the eighteenth century), and Lou finds herself pulled to one victim in particular: Isobel Key. Lou wants to right an ancient wrong, but to do that, she will have to face her very modern demons.

I’ve actually just received the final proofs for the cover, which I’ll be revealing on August 21st. Maybe Vickie will give y’all a sneak peak in a few weeks!

9. Any advice for someone who has a dream like writing and being published but hasn’t quite found the correct path to take?

Make friends who are in the writing community. Real friends, Facebook friends, Twitter and blog friends, just start building community. It’s amazing what you can learn from other people. I was lucky enough to stumble into an amazing group of writers, and their support and knowledge continue to be invaluable as I venture down this road. And be open to change: the publishing industry is in a rapid state of change, and there’s not one right path for everyone (a lot like faith, actually.) Stay persistent, and remember what you love: for me, it’s the storytelling. Everything else is secondary, as long as I keep writing.

And that’s important, too: keep writing. Those wonderful worlds in your head will never come to life until you put pen to paper and pour words onto the page.

OK, my Darlins… there you have the first of the many exciting changes coming to Aoibheal’s Lair. I’ve already gotten confirmation that I’ll be sharing the cover for The Burning of Isobel Key  when it’s revealed on or around August 21st. And after that I’ve got a review of the book for you as well.

Stay tuned my Lovlies… the excitement is just beginning… 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Consequences...

Each morning as I'm enjoying a second cup of coffee, I log into Blogger and check out the entries that have been posted overnight from the people I've subscribed to. I enjoy reading what they have to say while I'm trying to wake up, and before I begin my day. Recently, I've felt a difference in the tone and witnessed a change in content in a couple of the ones I've been reading for a very long time. Don't get me wrong...I firmly believe in change. I'm trying to do that here in Aoibheal's Lair.

The change I've felt in a particular blog isn't positive...at least I don't feel it is.  A few months ago, this author had a large and what we all thought was a positive change. Unfortunately it seems to have had the exact opposite effect in their life, at least in my perception. The author is still writing about many of the same topics as before, but there seems to be a darker message underlying the words on the page.

This author is also taking sides in a situation and defending someone when all the information they have is one sided (you know he said/she said crap). These actions have become, in my opinion hurtful and just plain petty. Something that any good journalistic type knows is completely wrong. As a writer, author, or journalist  (whichever title they choose to claim) is exposed to a conflict, ALL sides of the situation is to be explored and investigated before an opinion is given. This blogger didn't look at the entire picture, only one side was heard and then opinion formed... In this particular case it's on a personal level with me... I know *both* sides of the story, I know what actually happened, I didn't make any rash decisions.

I used to look up to this person and felt they were a great influence in the Pagan community and in my personal life as a blogger. I can't do that any longer. After much soul searching and meditation, I have removed this blogger from my reading list and also from my FB friends. Granted, I did NOT know them in person, only through their written work... They probably won't even miss me or know that I've removed them. And because of that they won't know the consequences of their actions...

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

So My Dear, You Have Been Deleted.......

While I was going through some old flash drives this morning, I found this and decided to post it here. I wrote this years ago when I belonged to another social media site after going through some crap with someone I called friend and sister. That person is no longer in my life... at times I have made the same mistakes when it comes to *friends*, but with each mistake I learn and change how I allow people to treat me... This is NOT directed to anyone in particular... it's just a random post ... THAT IS ALL!


You will always know when you do not belong
When you are not a part of something....
No words need to be spoken. Nevertheless, you can feel
The difference in how people act towards you.
It isn't fair how people treat you like you are
Not worth it to even look you in the eye,
Even so, I use to call you friend, And I cared for you
Deeply, had a great deal of respect for you
Until you turned on me. How could you treat me...
Your friend like that? Now I am an outcast among you
You treat me as if I am some kind of animal.
You are now no longer a part of my world.
You will never hold that power over me.
For I have the power to delete you from my life.

So my Dear, you have been deleted.......

Monday, August 6, 2012

OMGoddess! Such Excitement Coming My Way

I love August! Not only is my brother's birthday on August 1st, but it's also Lughnasadh and first of the 3 Harvest festivals for many in the Pagan community. It also is one month closer to our local Central NC Pagan Pride Weekend held at the state fairgrounds in Raleigh, NC on September 15 and 16 this year...

August also begins to cool down here in the Sand Hills, not by much I'll give you that, but a few degrees less each week or so make me much less cranky. Mercury will go direct on Wednesday, and let me tell you, it's not going to come soon enough for me. This cycle has been one of the most difficult I've been through in a while.

I've got LOTS of good news coming up for the next few weeks and much of it involves Aoibheal's Lair. First up is an interview with a very good friend about her first published book...

And then yesterday I was invited to join a new Facebook group that is going to be participating in activities for Samhain. I am SO stoked about this. There will be blogging, music, give aways and LOTS of fun for Samhain.

It is such a good feeling to know I am not only loved, but also respected by my peers. Respected enough that I'm asked to join things, invited to functions, included in Circles. Without me harassing anyone or hanging a pork chop around my neck so someone will play with me (yes, that IS a snark).

I'll be sharing my new adventures here with all of you my Darlings, so grab something to drink, settle in and get ready for some awesome experiences! The first one should be ready on or around the 12th...

Monday Munchies ~ Easy Chicken Pot Pie

This is one of my family's favorite fall and winter dishes. I've taken it to many gatherings and it has been a big hit. Since we are going into our harvest season, I thought this would be an easy start to a festival of cooking. I hope you enjoy this as much as we do...


Ingredients

1 pound skinless chicken breast, boneless  halves - cubed
1 cup sliced carrots
1 cup frozen green peas
1/2 cup sliced celery
1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup chopped onion
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon celery seed
1 3/4 cups chicken broth
2/3 cup milk
2 (9 inch) unbaked pie crusts

Directions

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C.)

In a saucepan, combine chicken, carrots, peas, and celery. Add water to cover and boil for 15 minutes. 

Remove from heat, drain and set aside.

In the saucepan over medium heat, cook onions in butter until soft and translucent. Stir in flour, salt, pepper, and celery seed. Slowly stir in chicken broth and milk. Simmer over medium-low heat until thick. Remove from heat and set aside.

Place the chicken mixture in bottom pie crust. Pour hot liquid mixture over. Cover with top crust, seal edges, and cut away excess dough. Make several small slits in the top to allow steam to escape.

Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until pastry is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.