Wonderful Litha

Wellspring likes to do an outdoor picnic for Litha.  It's a pretty relaxed and casual affair where we often invite friends, family and other pagans to join us.  

This year we made the trip to Webber Natural Pool in North Minneapolis.  We had a lovely spread with way too much food as is typical for us in Blue Star.  Remember, if you ever leave feast hungry, it is your own damn fault as we always make enough to feed an army.

Two things stood out to me this year. 

First, it was wonderful to be outside and just enjoy the world.  There is so much turmoil and so much divisiveness right now.  We got to simply take a break from it all, spend time with each other and be peaceful.  

Secondly, several of us pushed beyond some things that are/were uncomfortable for us.  Sitting down and eating with people is one thing.  It definitely pulls you together and gives you a sense of community, but putting on a swimsuit and going into the pool is just a different level of intimacy.  Surprisingly, no one exploded.  No one died.  No one caught on fire -- although some of us are a little pink and crispy.  

We got to practice some self acceptance, together.  It's nice to grow with each other and independently together.  

And, if you've dug into our website, you'll see that this happened right as we are turning from the Path of Power of Love to the Path of Power of Music and Dance.  Great timing if you ask me!  

Know Thyself

One of the things that we really work hard at in Wellspring is knowing who you are, knowing your boundaries and honoring them.  But we also try to balance that with supporting each other and our community.  Today, I committed to going outside of my normal boundaries to support two of my communities -- the Blue Star Community and the rescue community that I am part of.  

When we step beyond our normal boundaries, a few things happen.  You learn new things.  You meet new people.  You have new experiences.  Also, you stretch yourself further.  You work harder.  You can be uncomfortable.  

Both of my commitments today pushed my boundaries as an empath.  Normally, I'm good at knowing when I should not go into a situation because I can't shield appropriately enough.  Like, I don't often go out on Black Friday (unless it is with my mother-in-law, but still it is very laid back).  I don't go to Wal-Mart much.  If I do go to Wal-Mart, I carefully pick and choose which one I'm willing to step into.  And when it comes to rituals, I avoid certain communities and I avoid certain rituals.  It doesn't mean those rituals or communities are bad.  I just know that I may have adverse reactions.  

Today, I went to a mall on Black Friday for 5 hours.  Well, more like 6 hours with being dropped off early enough for set up and then being picked up after we had time for tear down and clean up.  I got to talk to some of the people in the rescue that I hadn't met before.  We raised some money.  I got to spend some great time with my daughter.  We got some Christmas shopping done.  (Yes, we celebrate Yule and Christmas.  Yule is our spiritual holiday.  Christmas is our secular and familial holiday.)  It was great to watch her do some things with her own money that gave her a lot of joy.  However, it was 6 hours in a mall on Black Friday.  With all those people.  With all those emotions.  With the stress and worry and excitement and concern and happiness.  There is so little calm and peacefulness.  

If I had stopped there, I would have probably been fine.  My feet hurt.  I don't stand or even walk for 6 hours like that.  But really, I would have been fine.

However, I didn't stop there.  I had made a commitment to be at a ritual too.  I knew that there were going to be two people that I wanted and needed to support.  I had committed to them that I would be there.  

This ritual is a very heavy emotional ritual that is incredibly cathartic for the participants.  This was the third time I've been in 12 years...  13 years...

I don't go because it's a lot of work for me.  A lot of work.  In ritual, it is when I usually can let my shields down and just feel and be.  This ritual means that I'm usually doing double time keeping those shields up.  And then when I know that people probably need some extra from me, I try to give it.  We had a couple of new people there.  One of which I feel responsible for and so when the emotion was really high, I helped reinforce shields for that person.  Another person there was raw and open for a while and so I helped reinforce shields for that person temporarily until they were back on their feet.  

And as people near me had their catharsis, I wanted to be there for them, to help support them.  It's kind of what I do.  I use those empath abilities during those times to help them funnel off and stabilize emotions.  I don't take them from them.  They are important.  Everyone needs to feel those emotions.  But as they let the emotions bubble up and come out, I try to flush out the excess.  This is only with people that I know and have an intimate connection with, unless I've been asked to help.  Sometimes, holding them is just holding them though.  

Tonight, after pushing past my normal boundaries, I know that I have pushed too far.  I have literally made myself sick.  It will pass.  Clearly not as quickly as I'd like as I'm blogging at 3am, but it will pass.  Would I do it again?  Yes... I say that begrudgingly because I know what the consequences are, but yes, I would do it again.  I might try to schedule things better where I could have had control.  

Sometimes, knowing thyself means knowing when you need to do something regardless of the effect on you and being ready to live with those consequences.  Sometimes, knowing thyself is knowing who you are willing to make that sacrifice for and who you are not.  For now, I'm grateful for my renewed daily meditation habit and knowing that habit will help to make this pass more quickly.  I'm grateful for all the different people in my life and I'm glad that I can be of service to them.  

All the best, 


Hell in a Handbasket

Life went to hell in a handbasket this summer.  You can probably tell by the immense lack of activity on the blog.  Blue Star lost one of its own to cancer.  He was our lore keeper and loved by so many of us.  It's a loss that we will feel for many years to come. 

Additionally there were other frightening diagnoses to deal with and other deaths to deal with and then trying to pick up the pieces and become functional again and then suddenly school started...

It's been a rough ride.

However, we are happy to have found our footing again and planning again and doing again.  We finished out our Wicca 101 class and have decided to do public Blue Star New Moon rituals at local metaphysical shops.  The first two (December and January) are gong to be at the Eye of Horus. 

Blue Star as a Tradition is also moving and grooving.  We have two different new groups moving ahead with some very interesting projects.  I'm excited to be part of both.  I believe that both will help me grow as a person and as a priestess.  I'm certain that they will help the Tradition grow as well.  I think one of the great gifts that has come out of the death of our loved one is that we have really come together.   Like any large family, we have our squabbles but I think those squabbles are going to develop into some good and solid growth for us.  

Looking forward to what the future holds.

All the best, 


Element: Water

Every year, on Memorial Day, my inlaws go to the cabin.  It isn't their cabin but it is one that they have rented every year starting on Memorial Day and for the rest of the week for years.  They knew the previous caretakers really well.  Each week ended with a nice steak dinner.  

This was one of my favorite things each year -- until the kids started school.  Now, we just get to go for the first day.  We make the three hour drive, spend the day and then drive home that night.  I don't get to enjoy the lake itself, but I do enjoy the company of my inlaws.  

Any time I get to be near the water, I am happy.  It really speaks to my soul.  What is it about the water?

I think that if you have spent time near the ocean, you probably know what I am talking about.  With the ocean or the Great Lakes, there are the waves that rhythmically crash against the shore.  The simple repetitive sound can easily lull you into a meditative state.  If you sit quietly, your breath will begin to match its rhythm.  Your heart beat slows and your thoughts drift.  If you listen closely, you can hear the voices in the waves speaking their wisdom to you.

The lake is a different beast altogether.  It can be choppy on a windy day but it's not the same as the ocean waves.  But you never really know what the lake holds.  They can suddenly drop off into unknown depths.  The murky bottom holds all sorts of secret life.  A glassy lake reflects the heavens above.  And still doesn't tell you its secrets.  

Element water though is so much more than oceans and lakes.  There is water in what we eat and drink.  It is who we are.  More than half of our bodies is water.  It literally comes out of our pores.  That water inside of us, that is part of us, changes who we are day by day.  It is what draws us to the moon.  It is why people get so strange during a full moon.  We must honor that part of ourselves.  

We call upon the element of water in our rituals to bring us their special gifts.  Sometimes we specifically call them out.  For me, element water is also a protector and guardian.  It is a giant wall of water protecting the purity of what I do in ritual and in my magic.  Element water soothes me, washes away any pain or agony, and cleanses me -- physically and spiritually.  

Element water is a deep and profound thing.  I encourage you to meditate on the element water and find your own connections. 

All the best, 


Secrets & Mysteries

This week, I sat down with a young lady from a nearby religious school for an interview.  She had found our website while doing research for a term paper and wanted to find out what witches really do.  Now, I’m a wary sort of person so I asked for the questions in advance.  I felt that she was sincere and agreed to meet with her in a public place.  She was very polite and listened with an open mind.  At the end of the interview, she asked if she could come and observe a class or ritual if possible.  Since the ritual was in a public place and we allowed the general public to sign up for the class, we let her come to the class.

 The other day, I was listening to the radio on the way to work.  I like talk radio in the morning.  It makes me feel like someone is in the car with me.  Sometimes MPR is just too much for me to deal with though and I start my day angry about the state of our world.  So, I tune into MyTalk 107.1 which is all fluff.  They were talking about a new show or something.  One of the ladies was doing her best to avoid any of the spoilers so she could just immerse herself in the experience and enjoy it.

 What do these two things have in common?  Secrets and mysteries. 

 So much of Wicca is about secrets and mysteries.  I have to tell you first that I don’t like secrets.  I’m not good at keeping.  I don’t like having them.  And I’m probably going to spill the beans at some point.  It doesn’t mean I’m not trustworthy.  I just don’t like secrets.  Too often they are used as a weapon to hold power over people, to harm people, or to test people.  I really hate those types of games.

 But sometimes, secrets are important.  This year, I kept a huge secret from my husband for more than six months.  He was up for an award and I knew it.  However, the surprise and joy that he would feel in the moment when he was called up for the award was well worth keeping the secret. 

 We have secrets and mysteries for those same sorts of occasions.  Sometimes you simply need to experience the ritual as it happens, without foresight and knowledge, just so you can unlock that mystery for yourself.  We can provide tools and methods, but until you do it yourself and experience them for yourself, you’ll never truly know.

 Where do you draw those lines with a complete outsider who just wants to observe?  Wellspring is about outreach and education.  We opened our ritual to her.  We answered her questions.  We treated her as part of the group.  Hopefully, our openness and our kindness will be returned. 

 And what mysteries am I willing to impart to you?

 Here’s a few where nature and the gods will fill you up:

 This weekend, get out of the cities.  Find a nice grassy area, lay down and stare at the stars in the sky.  Just let your mind flow wherever it wants to go.  Relax and watch the heavens. 

 When the rain comes, go outside.  Open your arms wide and face the sky.  Let those rain drops fall on your face and arms.  Let the Mother Earth cleanse you and wash away any anger, any fear, any doubt.  Be filled up with her joyousness. 

 And share a meal with loved ones.  Turn off all the distractions.  Ban the cell phones and other electronics from the area.  Just sit and eat and talk and laugh and enjoy. 

 Mysteries are all around us, if only we look. 


All the best,


Yay Beltane!

Whoo hoo!  Beltane is here!  In Blue Star, this is one of our two hinge celebrations.  We pass the leadership from the priest to the priestess. It is the celebration of the physical union of the God and Goddess to ensure the fertility and prosperity of the crops in the coming year.  

So what about other ways to celebrate?  What if you are solitary?  Or have kids?  

One of our sister covens is having an outing to the Minnesota Arboretum for some fun and frolicking with the Flora and Fauna and all the beautiful new life there.  One year, we made flower leis.  There is a group of us that always go to the May Day Parade.  Each year there is a new celebration to welcome back the Sun and the warmth.  The Minneapolis Farmer's market is open.  There is a park within walking distance no matter where you are in the cities.  

Spending time outside in one of our many parks, looking at one of our many beautiful lakes is great way to honor the changing of the seasons.  

So get outside this weekend!  Let the sun shine down on your skin!  Enjoy weather where you can maybe show a little skin!

All the best, 



I was sitting there in the dark, all alone, and full of emotion.  I wondered how I could get some of the emotion and the energetic crap out of my mind, out of my heart, and out of me.  In our religion, we don't have confession.  There isn't anyone to absolve us of our sins or those things we perceive as sins and wrongdoings.  We believe that we are responsible for our own actions.  The things that we do will return to us threefold.  Karmic retribution.  Occasionally, we inflict those punishments on ourselves.  

Not only do we do things to ourselves that we need to be cleansed of, but others do things to us that we need to be cleansed of and have removed from our psyche.  We hang on to pain and to hurt.  The darkness settles over us and we start to drown in it.

So what do we do?  We're witches!  We take care of it ourselves.  This is where self-purification comes in.  There are several methods of self-purification.  Some are nasty ways to do it.  Remember the reverend in the Scarlett Letter?  Self-flagellation.  I wouldn't recommend it.  However, I would recommend a bath though.  It's much more pleasant.  I highly recommend a warm bath with some Epsom salts.  A good soak, a deep scrubbing and some meditation will work wonders.  Once you add intent and a little energy work, you have a fabulous self-purification.  

Another method that I believe I picked up from Spiral Dance by Starhawk is to cast your circle, call in the elements, invite in your gods and then cense yourself with the smoke of the incense, the elements of Air and Fire.  Then take a nice swig of salt water, swish it around, even gargle with it and then spit it back out.  Visualize that salt water pulling out all of those impurities from your heart and your soul.  As you spit it out, it is removed from you and you are rid of it.  Then ask for the blessings of your gods and the elements.  Stay in a meditative state for a while and fill yourself with love.

Every now and then, we use a longer term method of purification.  Fasting.  This is typically in preparation for a major ritual, transformative rituals.  These are times when mysteries are revealed.  The cleansing process not only helps to eliminate impurities from our bodies but also helps to put us in a state to receive messages from the gods.  Now, when I say fasting, I mean that we start essentially with an elimination diet sort of thing.  First we eliminate processed foods and meat.  Then little by little work our way down to a raw food or juice diet.  Then nothing but clear liquids for the last few hours.  All of these things are adjusted as needed based on your own physical needs.  For instance, I can't do a raw food diet.  I'm allergic.  I was able to alter it so I went down to a pasteurized juice fast.  I also am hypoglycemic so some of those juices had protein powder added to them.  There was no 12 hour or 24 hour liquid diet for me.  It would be bad and unhealthy in serious ways.  

These things are meant to cleanse your soul.  Not harm you.  Make sure that any time you do any sort of magic or cleansing or fasting that you do not harm yourself.  Take care of yourselves.

All the best, 



April Showers

April and Spring are both here.  The good news is that the Sun is back!  Yay!  Miel and I are both solar powered creatures.  Winter takes a huge toll on us.  However, that is done!

We have met and discussed our goals for the coming year.  We've written them down, committed to them, and started on them.  

Spring is a great time to do that.  Take stock of your houses, clean them out, set down your goals and start again with renewed confidence and vigor.  

Some of the fun lore that we incorporate into our lives with the cleaning and preparing are:

All the holiday decorations, especially anything with those evergreen needles, needs to be out of the house by Feb 2.  Otherwise, all those little needles turn into little gremlins that wreak havoc on your home.  

Spring Equinox or Ostara is the time to plant those seeds.  Here in MN, that means you can set up your starter seeds for growth in the basement under the grow lights.  But it is also is for those seeds of creation.  Miel and I, like I said earlier, sat down together and wrote down our goals for the coming year.  These goals though can be anything!  Start planting those seeds to continue your education, to find a new job, to start a new project, to learn a new skill.  This is a great time for all those things.  

Good luck with your seeds!

All the best, 


Happy Thanksgiving

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving.  Miel is on her way to visit family for the holidays.  We are hosting at home with a close friend.  It'll be low key but a day with good friends and tasty food.  

One of my favorite things about the Blue Star Tradition is the Orphans' Thanksgiving.  Many of us are transplants and away from our family.  One family opens their doors every year to anyone who wants to come and join them for Thanksgiving.  It is always potluck but they work together to try to make sure that they have all the traditional foods.  It's a huge meal, full of great food, and with great company but none of the bickering that you often get with blood family.  

After the dishes are cleared away, the big table is broken up into smaller tables and everyone plays games until they are tired and ready to go home. The fun and fellowship goes on into the night.  Snacking happens on and off throughout.  

So my wish for you all is that this Thanksgiving be filled with lots of good food, lots of love, and lots of fun.

All the best, 


Back to Basics

It is amazing the things that become second nature after working on them, developing them, and making them your own.  A part of yourself.  And then when you stop to think about it and remember the steps and explain it to someone, it becomes new again.  Not only does it become new again, but it becomes more powerful.  

We talked about grounding, centering and shielding at class on Thursday.  We were asked if we still had to think about it and work at it.  The truthful answer is yes.  In fact that day, I needed help from Miel to ground and center myself.  It had been a very chaotic day and my energy was scattered.  After some intense rituals, I have to think about it.  

At one point, we consciously raised (or lowered) our shields and let them feel where they were.  It was interesting to have multiple people purposefully poking at me energetically.  Purposefully invading my space and my barriers.  I haven't played those sorts of energy games in a while.  

I'm really excited about the class.  I'm excited to see where they all go with this.  I'm also excited to see where I make new discoveries through the class and going through all of this again.  

All the best, 


Paths of Power: Meditation

Miel and I were prepping for our next Wicca 101 class which is about Grounding, Centering, and Shielding.  As part of this class, we are using a guided meditation to help with the concepts and techniques of grounding and centering.  It led to a deeper discussion of meditation practices in general.  This got me further thinking about my own personal development and use of meditation.

There are some basics about meditation that not everyone thinks of as meditation.  First, the most common form of meditation that most people think of is quiet mind/quiet body.  Basically, you sit still and empty your mind.  This is probably one of the most difficult types of meditation out there.  If you can do it right off the bat, bravo!  But there are three other ways to describe meditation -- quiet mind/moving body, moving mind/quiet body, and moving mind/moving body.  

Moving mind/moving body is one that lots of people.  Without even realizing it.  Do you listen to audio books while running?  Watch TV and just kind of zone out while on the bike at the gym?  Your brain is following some sort of story and tunes everything else out.  Your body is getting into some sort of rhythmic movement.  They work together to release stress and settle your mind.  

Moving mind/quiet body are those guided meditations.  You are following a story.  You are being led down a path to gain some sort of information or insight.  You do this while sitting or laying comfortably and still.  Lots of yoga classes will end with this quiet guided meditation to help you relax your whole body.  Pagans and New Age Spiritualists often use them for self-discovery.  One of my favorites was a journey to discover the parts of myself that were hidden or neglected.  

Quiet mind/moving body is accomplished through things like tai chi, qi gong, or one of our favorites is the Tsalagi Dance of Life.  You focus on the movements and then quiet your mind and just feel the flow of the movements.  Once you are familiar with the movements, they automatically help you slip into that meditative state. 

And now on to quiet mind/quiet body.  This is finding that comfy spot and and quieting your mind.  The key for any quiet mind meditation is learning how to silence those voices in the back of your head that keep talking about the things you need to get at the store for the house, that nagging thing that you didn't quite do right at work, the errands that you need to run, the bills that you need to pay.  You learn to acknowledge the thought and then let it slip by.  At first, I would clearly think to myself, "Yep, I got it." And then move on.  As part of my pagan learning, I learned to use those thoughts as cues to go deeper into the meditation.  Same with noises around me that I can't control.  You'll find that there are different positions that you can or cannot be in.  My hands cannot touch my head or arms, but resting on my abdomen is good.  

The other thing to consider is music.  Music helps on a few different levels.  First, the ups and downs of the music.  Most music has some sorts of peaks and valleys.  If you are into the meditation, your journey will follow those peaks and valleys.  If that is part of your plan, then it's good.  If it isn't, then you need different music.  Having a rhythm and a sound that speaks to you is important.  Miel finds some types of trancy club music to be good for her.  I love Liquid Mind for my meditation.  But also Gregorian chants, tribal drumming, and any of the new age music or soundscapes can work pretty well.  One of the things that I love about using Gregorian chants is that I can't actually tell what they are saying so it allows the voices of the gods to materialize in them for me.  A good steady drum beat is fantastic.  Often hard to find, but still fantastic background to help you dive deeper and deeper into your meditation.

So why use meditation?  It isn't a Wiccan thing per se, but a lot of Wiccans use it as a tool.  For Blue Star, it is one of our Paths of Power.  If you can hush your mind or use the active mind to journey, then you can connect with your higher self, your subconscious and/or the gods.  You can use meditation as a jumping off point to learn move about trance work, lucid dreaming, astral projection, A strong meditation practice can aid in self healing and pain management.  

I used meditation during labor and delivery.  I don't think that I could have made it through without.  Labor came hard and fast.  But we put on my music (Liquid Mind -- I had enough peaks and valleys coming with the contractions) and I slipped into deep meditation.  I know that nurses and midwives and even doctors came in and out of the room, but I don't consciously know it.  I know they tried to move me over a couple of times and because it was disruptive to my meditation, I resisted but I stayed pretty deep.  There was no screaming, yelling, cursing my husband or any of that.  

If meditation can manage that pain, you know it can be a powerful tool.  I encourage you to develop your meditation practice.  Find the methods that work for you and master them.  Move on and experiment with the other ones until you can simply slip into that meditative state on demand and without extra tools.  

Enjoy.  Peace.

All the best, 


CoG Samhain

We are rounding out our Samhain ritual season.  This is always an interesting time for me.  As I think I've mentioned before, it's very busy.  Miel was part of three Samhain rituals.  I was part of two.  And then we had our Dumb Supper.  Last night was the last one for both of us.  

It was a good one too. The priestess for the ritual did an excellent job of pulling together people from different covens and different traditions to create the Covenant of the Goddess Samhain ritual.  All of the invocations were good and strong.  The part that made me giggle most was that a few times I ended up starting off the singing.  No one died.  Thankfully, people joined in quickly after getting the cues.  And we managed a powerful energy raising.  

In our own coven, we have passed the power.  For the last six months, I held the sword.  Miel has it for the next six months.  We've done lots of work over the last hinge.  I think we've built some strong foundations.  We've got our rhythm.  We've got solid plans for the coming months.  I see bright things ahead for us.

The other thing thought that I want to talk about today is healing and the magic of ritual.  I've been sick the better part of the last week.  I knew though that I had to be at the CoG ritual.  Bowing out at that point was not an option.  I slept as often as I could.  I beefed up on zinc, echinacea, Vit C, tea and chicken noodle soup along with cold medicine.  I sucked it up and went to ritual.  Careful not to shake hands or touch too much.  

I will tell you though -- Everytime I go into ritual and I am sick, it is suspended.  So in ritual, we create a unique space that is beyond time and place.  And you know, that isn't always apparent.  Sometimes, you can see the kitchen and the clock in there and you know exactly where you are and exactly what time it is.  Often though, circle is warmer because of the energy.  But the part that amazes me is that I can go into ritual feeling sick and once I'm in ritual headspace, I don't feel sick.  Last night, with a cold moving from my head to my chest, I walked around and sang a lot.  I managed the energy and felt fine the whole time.  

Now, right after that circle came down, it was an entirely different set of circumstances.  The residual feel good hung around for a little bit.  I answered some questions for people, but then I started coughing and sweating and the congestion built right back up.

The other amazing thing about ritual last night -- we had so much going on and we started a little late.  I was sure it had to be 9pm when I left.  It was only a little after 8pm.  Time moves differently in ritual.  

I love it when I get to experience that, especially after so many years of doing this.  

All the best, 


Samhain Comes

Just a couple more days until Samhain.  And just to be clear, that is NOT Sam-hain.  It is Sow-en, like a female pig (a sow) plus en.  Sow-en.  Samhain.  A while back, I was binge watching Supernatural.  And it was the Samhain episode... and they must have said Sam-hain about 53 million times and each time my head exploded.  I'm nearly positive that they did it on purpose to drive me crazy.  Sure of it.  ;)

Now... On to less crazy things...

Just a couple more days until Samhain.  This is always a very busy time of year.  As you know from my previous post, it is a hinge for us.  That means there is work to do.  Basic running of the coven sort of work to do.  Plus, it is one of the high holidays.  And that means BIG ritual stuff going on.  This year of course is no different.  With kids, it becomes a little extra tricky because Samhain is one of those sabbats that you really like to do ON the sabbat.  This year, we are doing trick or treating first and then late at night (for me at least), we are doing our Wellspring Samhain ritual to do the work part of things.  Then on Sunday, we are hosting a Dumb Supper.  Then next weekend, we are also participating in the Covenant of the Goddess public Samhain ritual.  There is an anniversary party and a birthday party in there too.  

So what exactly is Samhain?  I know that if you are reading this on the internet then you've probably read a lot of different resources that will tell you what Samhain is... technically.  So I'm going to share with you my own personal views, interpretations, and experiences of what Samhain is.  

In Blue Star, we have some people that are very tied into the world of the fae.  And most of my imagery comes from that.  And in my head there is a mixing of two goddesses and two different mythos that defines Samhain for me.  

First there is the collecting of the souls of those who have passed in the last year.  This coincides with the imagery of the ride of the faery queen.  I see her all dressed in black, flying on the wind with a huge black horse, and collecting the souls as she races by.  And she takes them home to the Summerlands where everyone is young, beautiful and vibrant until they come again to our plane.  

And Hecate does much the same in my experience.  But I see it more of she is a beacon to which the souls are drawn to her and she leads them into Hades.  She must work very hard to keep that beacon shining brightly so that the souls can see her in the darkness and find their way home.  

That is the first part of the sabbat.  The second part is that this is when the veil between the world of the living and the world of the dead is at its thinnest.  It is when the spirits can communicate with us most easily.  It is the time for connecting and honoring those that have passed before us.  It is in remembrance that we will have our dumb supper.  It is in remembrance that we set up the ancestor shrine and call out to our loved ones.  We let them know that they are loved and they are remembered.  

For me, this is the meaning of this holiday, this sabbat.

But truly, there is a third part.  It is the beginning of the new year for most witches.  It's still difficult for me to let this be the end of the old year and the beginning of the new year.  Often times, there is a great deal of fortune telling or peeking into the future to see what the new year will bring.  There is the letting go of unnecessary burdens and pain from the old year so you enter the new year clear and free.  

Whatever your celebration entails, whatever calls to you, may you have a blessed Samhain.  And may you know the love of your departed ones again.

All the best, 


Vows and Goals

Yesterday at 4:57pm was the new moon. Typically, I am not nearly so precise with the time of the new moon.  Typically, we try to schedule our rituals as close to the full or new moon as possible to reap the benefits of the energy of that moon.  Samhain is close on the heels of the new moon and is hear in a week.  Although there are many correlations that I could make with these two things happening so quickly, the one in particular that I'm focusing on right now is Vows.  

In the Blue Star Tradition, we often make (or take) vows.  We take them for the new moon and for the hinge.  The hinge sabbats are Samhain and Beltane.  The new moon vows last for one lunar cycle.  The hinge vows last for half the year.  

For the new moon vows, we focus on short term things.  They are usually self-improvement sorts of things.  From this new moon to the next, I'll walk the dog three times a week.  From this new moon to the next, I'll make my bed every morning.  I'll declutter for 15 minutes a day.  I'll turn in all my homework on time.  They require some thought and some commitment but they are not usually huge changes in our lives.  Now hinge vows on the other hand, they should be transformative.  These should have a deeper meaning in your life.  

So as I am preparing for Samhain and thinking on on a vow, I realize there are many things that I need or want to change in my life.  Most of them are personal.  I need to be healthier.  I think that I will make that hinge vow -- to be healthier -- and then use the new moon vows as the smaller steps to achieve that healthiness.

Most of us have probably heard about SMART goals.  We can use this process and apply it to our vows.  So my overall goal of being healthier can be achieved by:  walking the dog 3x a week, track and journal my eating, increasing my water intake, making 10K steps each day, and eliminating soda and sweet tea from my diet.  

SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time Bound.  Looking back at the vows I've outlined, 'be healthier' is not that specific but I've created 5 smaller steps to get there and those goals are specific.  They are measurable.  Because they are specific, they are measurable really.  Attainable?  Yes?  Making my steps will be easier with the dogs walks.  Sweet tea?  That is going to be hard, but I've already started using different sweeteners.  And I'm making the assumption that tonic water is not soda so I think I'm okay there.  Relevant.  They are absolutely relevant to my overall goal of being healthier.  And because of the nature of the vows, they are automatically time bound.  

If vows are just goals, then why do we even do them at all?  In the last post, I talked about manifesting reality.  This is very similar.  We carefully consider what we need to be doing.  We plan it out.  Then we put the extra oomph in it by adding to our goals and vows the energy of our covenmates and the blessings of the Gods.  

No longer are you working on it by yourself.  The energy of the ritual is helping to push you forward.  The spirit of the elements are working with you.  And the blessings of the gods are behind you.  There is a whole team with you.  

Good luck with your vows and goals.

All the best, 

Manifesting Reality

Where thought goes, energy follows. 

We are all magical beings.  And where we put our focus is where the magic happens.

Miel and I decided a few months ago that we specifically needed to work at putting ourselves out there, open ourselves up to the Universe, and bring people to our coven.  We were specific about the type of people we wanted to attract.  Most people think that is where magic/spellwork stops.  It's not. 

You can sit back and do a million spells but unless you change your reality, nothing is going to change.  You have to make those changes happen.  So what is the point of doing spellwork?  And 99% of the time, my response to that would be "Exactly!"  The spellwork, in my opinion, is what puts the icing on the cake, the turbo in your sports car.  It's that extra boost.  

Meanwhile, Miel and I put that out there.  Then we sat down and started the work.  We started talking about it.  We created this website.  We created our Facebook page.  We got business cards so we could share our contact information with people.  We carry them with us everywhere we go so we are always ready.  We decided to have a booth at Pagan Pride.  We then volunteered for a ritual.  We attended other pagan events.  Throughout these events and conversations, we kept getting told to do a Seeker's Class.  The community needs it.  You should do it.  That was the Universe speaking back to us.  That is where the magic began to happen.  We worked with a shop that we thought would attract the people we were looking for.  We pulled together curriculum.  We set up dates and times.  We advertised on pagan pages.  We had one person sign up.  The magic happened when in the last week or so before the class, we had 10 more people sign up.  The magic happened when the people we sat down with all seem like the people we wanted to attract.  

So we put our thoughts and effort and energy toward a goal.  We asked for the Universe to help us.  We manifested our reality.  We made magic happen.  

How do you make magic happen?  How do you manifest your reality?  What do you need the Universe to give that extra boost to?  

All the best, 


Wicca 101 Begins!

Yes!  We had an excellent first class!  We sat at 1 registrant for a long time.  Miel and I were very concerned that we were not going to put on the class.  A couple weeks before, we bumped up to 6.  Enough for a class!  And then in the last few days, we jumped to 11.  11!  What an awesome number!  That meant the very witchy 13 total in our group with Miel and me.  

I think we had a great first class.  Every now and then I am reminder how well Miel and I complement each other.  This was definitely one of those times.  We naturally fed off of each other, picked up where one left off, and just that synergy.  Several of the class seemed to join right in there.  

The people in the class are great.  It is fun to see the ones that are clearly being led by the Gods.  And the curiosity and excitement is palpable.  And contagious.  As silly as this will sound to those of you who know me well, there are a few that we'll need to break out of their shells.  Yes, I just said that!  

We talked about ethics and expectations.  Even with this very serious discussion, we giggled and had fun.  I think we've got a great mix here.  I think we'll do wonderful things as a group!  I'm really looking forward to the coming year and growing with these people.  

All the best, 


The Ride

As the veil thins between the worlds and Samhain nears, the ride begins.  You can feel it in the air as we move from Summer to Fall.  It is that crispness that tingles the senses.  You just know that Death is around the corner.  Interesting noises float on the breeze and you instinctively want to run and play and hide all at the same time.

The Faeries are dancing.  And the Ride begins.  

Queen Mab and her Court ride throughout and collect those lost souls.  Though she mourns her Consort, she is single minded in her quest.  

During these times, pagans who are in sync with the faery world often have trouble sleeping or their sleep is very busy.  We ride with the Queen and help her in her work.  Or we support those on the ride and they feed off of our energy.  

Rest well my friends.  Rest well. 

All the best, 


Why is Service Important?

In Wellspring, we feel that service is very important.  You may wonder why we feel that way.  There are two core beliefs that I feel pertain to this.  One is that we are all part of the same world and we are all interconnected.  One of the common ideas that you often see demonstrated in different rituals is that we are the weavers, we are the web.  When something affects one strand on the web of life, the ripples can be felt through all of the web. You can find this in several of our songs and chants too.  We are the weavers is one.  Fur and Feather is another..

Fur and Feather
Fur and feather and scale and skin,
Different without but the same within,
Many of body but one of soul,
Through all creatures are the gods made whole.

Words and music by Sable

The second core belief is the one of reciprocity.  Like attracts like.  What goes around comes around.  The Golden Rule.  Karma.  The threefold law.  If we turn a blind eye to those in need, then what will happen to us when we are in need?  And we'll all be in need at some point.  

We know that people have different abilities to give back to the community.  Some have time.  Some have money.  Some have both.  Some have neither.  The important thing though is to find that way that works for you.  As you may have seen in other posts, Wellspring bakes cookies for the holiday baskets for The Aliveness Project.  Miel used to do massage therapy there for quite a while.  

I am all about the dogs.  On Sunday, I did another transport run and helped to bring up 8 dogs from a kill shelter in AR to rescues in MN.  I got to tote 4 lovely pups from IA to MN.  I wasn't able to help on a different Saturday run from MO to MN but I did have a few extra bucks to send to one lady who was driving 12 hours to save those lives.  I had some time.  I has some money.  

I also send money to the Hennepin County Libraries, Minnesota Public Radio, NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota and Twin Cities Public Television.  Each year at the holidays, we do a donation to disabled veterans.  We've also done a few holiday donations to World Wildlife Fund and Heifer International.  The regular charities are just $10 a month.  

What if you don't have time or money?  Lots of us order through Amazon.com.  Did you know they have a special program at Smile.Amazon.com.  You can go in there and select one of the highlighted charities or you can do a search for one that is meaningful specifically to you.  I also click every day on the Greater Good site for animals, literacy, mammograms, autism, veterans... There are several!  And there is probably an app for that... I just found and downloaded Walk for a Dog.  You walk.  It tracks your walk just like MapMyWalk would do for you.  Then is sends money based on mileage to the animal rescue you chose.  You get healthier.  The rescue gets more funds.  

Remember though, service doesn't have to be through an established charity.  Maybe you know a new mom who could use a few prepared meals or a few hours of free time to shower, do some laundry and wash dishes.  Maybe you know a couple who could use a date night and you can watch their kids.  Maybe a friend is in the hospital and you can go clean their house for them.  

Service comes in so many forms.  As we uplift others, we uplift ourselves.  We create the rising tide.  

I encourage you to find something close to your heart and then find a way to give.  

All the best, 


Mabon Celebrations

Mabon is the second of our harvest celebrations.  We look at it as the pagan Thanksgiving.  We come together to feast and celebrate our bounty.  Food and feast is always important for a Blue Star ritual but especially so for Mabon.  

One of our regular traditions is to ensure that we have something to represent each type of food we hope to have in the coming year.  Depending on the size of the coven, you'll find fish, chicken, pork, beef, game meat, fowl to cover the meats.  Then several vegetables and fruits with an assortment of grains. Chocolate is ALWAYS on the table.  Plus a myriad of desserts.  We are blessed that living in this metropolitan area, we can access so many types of food easily and typically affordably.

While we have all these foods on our feast table, it is important to remember that we need to understand where those foods come from, how are they produced, how did they make it to our table.  Are we doing more harm to ourselves and our planet by eating these foods?  A common and recurring theme from our gods, at this time of year and also in the spring during the planting times,  is that we need to know where our food comes from.  We need to understand how to grow and harvest our own foods.  We need to understand how to protect those food sources and the people who bring them to our tables.  The food should nourish us, those who provide it, and the land it comes from.  

The second part of Mabon is the Harvest Home portion.  This is when we Call the Pagans Home.  This is a call to the Universe to help people (and all creatures) to find their way home.  A home where they are loved and accepted for who they are.  A home where they can flourish and grow.  We've co-opted (read stole) a poem by Kathleen Raine for our purposes.

Spell to Bring Lost Creatures Home
by Kathleen Raine, “The Year One”, 1952. 

    Home, home,
    Wild birds home!
    Lark to the grass,
    Wren to the hedge,
    Rooks to the tree-tops,
    Swallow to the eaves,
    Eagle to its crag,
    And raven to its stone,
    All birds home!

    Home, home,
    Strayed ones home,
    Rabbit to burrow,
    Fox to earth,
    Mouse to wainscot,
    Rat to the barn,
    Cattle to the byre,
    Dog to the hearth,
    All beasts home!

    Home, home,
    Wanderers home,
    Cormorant to rock,
    Gulls from the storm,
    Boat to the harbour,
    Safe sail home!

    Children home,
    At evening home,
    Boys and girls
    From the roads come home,
    Out of the rain,
    Sons come home,
    From the gathering dusk,
    Young ones home!

    Home, home,
    All souls home,
    Dead to the graveyard,
    Living to the lamplight,
    Old to the fireside,
    Girls from the twilight,
    Babe to the breast,
    and heart to its haven,
    Lost ones home!


All of the lost souls, may you find your way home!

All the best, 


Apples, apples, apples... Everywhere?

Sunday was our coven apple picking outing.  The apple season is a little late this year because of the long, cool spring.  We did not get to pick our own apples but we did get some of the SweeTango apples!

One of the things that happened at our Pagan Pride ritual was that we were urged to know more about our food, where it comes from, how it is made, and how it nourishes our bodies and the land.  

Well, we learned some new things about apples and how they grow.  Miel visited with the apple growers at the State Fair.  They turned her on to McDougall's Apple Junction in Hastings MN.  They use a special technique called Espalier which in very basic terms in pruning and shaping a tree so that it grows on a trellis or in a specific pattern.  The trees are smaller, but produce more fruit.  

We also learned more about the difference between bees and wasps.  They have different types of venom.  Bees have a venom that is a warning.  "Go away you big scary human!"  And wasps sting to immobilize and eat whatever it has stung.  "Take that puny human!"  Also, by continuing to back away from the wasp, you create a backdraft sort of vacuum.  The little wasp has very little choice but to follow you.  

We walked away from our trip with LOTS of apples and armed with more information about the world we live in.  

Now what are we going to do with all those apples?

Last night I made apple fritters.  Quick, easy, and tasty.  Not so much with the healthy though.

1 1/3 c self-rising flour

1/4 c sugar

1/3 c milk

1 egg



Powdered Sugar

Peel, core and slice your apples.  I used 4 fairly large SweeTango apples.  And just used the metal corer/slicer thing from the kitchen section of the store so I had little apple wedges.

Mix your dry ingredients.  Add your wet ingredients.  Mix well.  It should be a little thicker than pancake batter.  You may need to add more milk.  Pour about a 1/4 inch of oil in your frying pan.  Dunk your apples in the batter.  And then fry them up in the pan.  Turn over when they are a nice golden brown.  Remove when they are nicely done on both sides.

Drain off the oil by placing the apple wedges on paper towels on a plate.  I had extra batter leftover so I gave it another good mix and just poured it into the oil -- Voila!  Fried Dough!  

Once everything has cooled and the oil has dripped off, sprinkle on powdered sugar and eat!  They are best when eaten warm.   This recipe comes from the very old red recipe book that my mom let me take when I moved up here.  It is from the Culinary Arts Institute.

And if you need more ideas of things to do with apples... click here

All the best,