A Wiccan Journey: Harnessing Planetary Energy.

Depending on what you want to create, harnessing the energy of the planets can enhance the power of your spell. I’ve written several blog posts on how to align with this energy, but knowledge of the energy and how they interact within our lives is a great way to enhance any spell.

Planetary hours is not a knew concept and is though to have been developed in Hellenistic astrology, and may have roots in the older Babylonian astrology. If you create your spell around a certain hour, you can harness that planets energy. The trick is figuring out what hour you need.

Below is a link to help explain more.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planetary_hours#:~:text=As%20each%20day%20is%20divided,Moon%20(%22Monday%22)%2C

At the bottom of the page is the formula to calculate the planetary hour. Personally, I have an app for that.

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.technologies.mobile.astroclock

This app is very convient and allows you to set alarms for certain times. Whether or not you want to utilize planetary hours into your spell work is up to you, but I find it exciting to create spells around these hours. It helps me to focus on what I want to accomplish.

One thing I do want to mention; the influence of the inner and outer planets. For those of you who are familiar with astrology, you know the inner planets (Mercury, Venus, and Mars) are known as Personal, with the Impersonal planets being Jupiter and Saturn. Transpersonal are the outer planets (Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto), and because their rotation around the sun takes much longer, the manifestation of your spell should you chose to utilize, may take much longer.

Bright Blessings and take care.

Random Question

What is one place that you’ve visited, and will never go back?

Oh, that’s easy.

Every region has one of those parks that kids NEED to visit. In Ontario, it’s Marine Land. When Sithboy was young, he’d come running whenever he heard the commercial, and then just stand there, frozen in place and stare. When he was a few years older we decided to go. Big fucking mistake.

  1. The poor animals were in pools that were WAY too small for the number they had. Beluga whales are big, and my heart broke to see them swimming around in a tank that could barely hold the three of them.
  2. The park is HUGE. At one point, there used to be a small train that went through the park so you didn’t have to walk the whole way. It wasn’t there when we went and from the looks of the tracks, it hadn’t run in years. We had to walk, and there were barely any places for people to rest.
  3. The treats they feed the animals, especially the bears – sugar pops.

There are many other reasons, but as I write this, I’m getting pissed off.

Marineland has a long history of people reporting them for animal abuse, and because of the reports, the Canadian Government has passed a bill to phase out captive aquatic animals (Ending the Captivity of Whales and Dolphins Act (Previously Bill S-203).

https://www.parl.ca/DocumentViewer/en/42-1/bill/S-203/royal-assent

We’d hoped that this would be a wonderful last stop on our family vacation. I still can’t believe how wrong we were.

What about you? Did you travel someplace and vow never to return?

From the Recipe Box: Does Anyone Deep-fry Anymore?

I’m dating myself with this, but remember those old cooking oil commercials with Florence Henderson? It seems like everything was deep fried back then.

Deep frying food went out of favour for quite a while, and I understand why, but I think like everything else, it’ a matter of how much you eat and what you make it with. There are dozens of articles on cooking oils; the bad and the good, and I’ve read a lot of them. We also have more oils to chose from. I found a good article that explains why some oils are bad and a list of their smoke points.

Note the Palm oil nutrition fact. They don’t recommend anyone using it.

Years ago, when Hubby found out he had high cholesterol, we stopped deep frying. He stopped eating anything deep fried and so did I in support. It was fine; I didn’t miss greasy food at all, and every now and then we’d go out to a fast food place, so it wasn’t as though we completely cut out deep fried foods.

Now, after so many years I’ve been toying with deep frying again. I bought a small fryer during 2nd lock-down, but I’ve only cooked fries, and they weren’t very good. Okay, I’ll be honest, they were crap in the first degree, and I have no idea what went wrong. Something I’ll have to play around with. My son took Culinary in college, and he said there were several dishes he learned to prepare that require deep frying, but there’s still a part of me that has this hesitation of fried foods. As though it’s taboo and eating it will bring some heavy shit on me. I felt the same way about butter for years too, but we’ve been using it over margarine for the last year.

Do you use a deep fryer? Any tips you can give a newbie?

Are NTF’s the Future of Ebooks?

I came across the acronym a few months back and had NO IDEA what it meant. When I did some research, the idea that this could be put to use for ebooks sparked a great blog post, but when I did more research, I found Huge Howey’s post on the exact same thing, and to be honest, his post makes it easier to understand not only what a NFT is, but how it can be used for creative compositions, and not just for ebooks. Go have a read.

https://hughhowey.com/nfts-for-authors/

The thing I like about his version is this, not only is it difficult for pirates to copy and profit, but if the book is sold to a third party, everyone in the chain of creating this ebook profits. I liken it to residuals actors/directors get from syndication of tv shows and movies. As Hugh points out, it’s not a lot, but at least it’s something.

On the down side, NFT’s are like Cryptocurrency and take a lot of energy to create. Considering how environmentally unfriendly bitcoin production can be, I’m not sure how sustainable this really is. Publisher’s Weekly did an article on it as well, and it brings some doubt as to whether this is just a fad or an investment.

https://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/digital/content-and-e-books/article/86104-could-nfts-work-in-publishing.html

I am ALL FOR any way that keeps illegal downloads from taking money from the creator, but not at the expense of the environment, therefore, I am on the fence about this.

Read the articles. What do you think?

Writing Update: March, 2021.

My laptop died. I’ve had a battery problem for the last year and a half, and it went critical during the summer. That was fine, I just made sure that my charger was close by and when the power drained (usually after an hour of use), I’d charge it up. Then, right after I’d finished the second last chapter, it no longer recognized the charger! Not only that, the plug was loose so if I moved, it would slip slightly and disconnect. I was writing with one eye on the charger and the other on my file. Thank the Gods I save everything to a flash drive.

With that, and the fact we’re in a third lockdown that has been extended until the middle of May. I’m truly surprised that I got as much writing done as I did. The stress of the last few months has seen me do other things than write, which adds to my stress levels, and I’m surprised I’m not an alcoholic at this point.

So let’s begin:

Eva and Skye’s Magical Hair Solution

I have finished the first draft. It was completed on the seventeenth of April. The final few chapters were hard to write, not because I was coming to the end, but because of the content. I had to break my characters hearts and while they’re not long scenes, I did tear up.

My work place stayed open do to online orders and curb-side, so I had A LOT of time off and manage to get work done. It wasn’t my 2000 words per day that I did during the 2nd lockdown, but I’m happy with what I did. I found two sub-plots as I wrote this last few months; one will deal with a volatile relationship between one of the characters and a love interest. I’ve raged against ‘bad boy’ characters becoming a love interest for years, now I’m going to show you why (read my original rant HERE). The second has to do with two secondary characters. Their storyline will continue into the rest of the books I have planned. I also did a bit of foreshadowing dealing with the other main character and the overall plot to the series, but it won’t really come into being until the second book. 

The most challenging aspect of these magical realism stories is creating a world that doesn’t resemble Harry Potter, especially when it comes to the education of young magical people, and while I don’t want to build an entire education system from scratch, that might be what happens. I also found an interesting sub-plot dealing with Eva’s father’s family, and I want to incorporate this into future books.

Word count – 89,678 of 89,000.

I had planned on just working on a new project for a few weeks and leave this one alone, but the night I finished it, things started coming to me; little things, revision things, and I got up and I’ve started editing and revising. If I do a scene a day, it should take me about nine weeks. If I can do more than one scene per day, great, but I have to take into account that I will be going back to work and one scene may be all I can do before my eyes get too tired. So I finished on the 18 of April. I should be done with revisions by June 20th.

That is the goal.

So tell me, how is your writing going, or not going? I’d love to hear how your projects are coming along.

Movie Night: Godzilla Vs. Kong.

Imdb Link: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5034838/

Genre: Action, Scifi, Thriller

Rating: PG-13

Tagline: God vs. King.

Synopsis: The epic next chapter in the cinematic Monsterverse pits two of the greatest icons in motion picture history against one another – the fearsome Godzilla and the mighty Kong – with humanity caught in the balance.

~~~

Review: 

I am a Godzilla fan and have been since 1975, and I’ve seen just about every movie made during the early years of the franchise, not to mention I own about a dozen as well. I have enjoyed the remakes so much. With the technology we have now to create such impressive creatures, it’s like this is the second age for the Monsterverse.

And yes, I did see this opening night in the middle of a pandemic, but I am a loyal fan.

The movie picks up several years after the second and gives both Godzilla and Kong equal time. It was interesting to learn the backstory of Kong, something that I don’t think has ever been done prior, and I would LOVE to know more about the long-standing feud between these two.

One thing I was concerned about; having the movie proclaim a winner. The original had a stalemate, and I was afraid that in this day and age when every movie HAS to have a winner, that the movie would do that. I’m glad it didn’t. Instead, the writers decided to have them fight a common enemy, something that was hinted at in the trailers, IF you looked hard enough.

Both have always been seen as a protector, but in this movie, it’s Godzilla that becomes the antagonist. It was hard for me, a Godzilla fan to see him battle a creature that is known to protect. Godzilla always fights the bad guy, which makes the reason behind their battle all the more interesting.

This movie should also please the critics who complained there wasn’t enough ‘monster time’ in the first movie (don’t even get me started on that), with battles starting almost at the beginning of the movie. There is not much to the plot, other than to get Kong from one place to another without Godzilla detecting him, and of course, your usual array of bad guys who want to control the uncontrollable.

If  you are a fan, you will enjoy this movie. I’m not going to rate it because I’m a huge fan, and of course I’ll give it five stars. Why wouldn’t I?   

What’s on the eReader: Anne of Green Gables.

We’ve all seen the television mini-series from 1985, and during second lockdown I re-watched the 2017 show on Crave. When the series was cancelled I was very disappointed, so I decided to read the first book, and was pleasantly surprised to see that I’d already downloaded it on my tablet.

Anne of Green Gables is a beloved Canadian book that I feel every Canadian should read. Both the 1985 mini-series and 2017 show depicted the book wonderfully, and I was a little surprised to learn that Rachel Lynde was a Liberal supporter. I’ve seen both adaptations and am a fan, so it was easy enough to read along and remember how the scenes played out. I think that was the fun part for me; recalling both series as I read.

This book has all the charm that I expected, even if it doesn’t go into more detail. Personally, that’s what I liked about the tv. Series; that it told the story and then some. It gave the reader that extra bit of content that ‘could’ have happened, and was fun to watch, and unfortunately, reading the book after seeing both the mini-series and television show left me wanting more from the book version.

I’m pretty sure I’ll continue with the series, but I don’t think right away. I have a lot of other books in my TBR pile and I’d like to try and get through the first, but the temptation to keep reading the series is powerful. I read this on a whim and I am glad because it let me see the story that the author wanted people to see, instead of someone’s interpretation. Not that the mini-series and tv show isn’t good, but it’s nice to get caught up in the original material.

Down the Garden Path: The Story of My Christmas Cactus.

This is my Christmas Cactus, and it has a unique backstory of how it arrived in this country.

Last summer, my husband did a side job, (he works in construction), and the owner of a house he was working on had this beautiful bushy Christmas Cactus. Hubby and I love plants of all kinds. We used to have fifty-two houseplants in our apartment when we first got married, so naturally he started talking about it to the homeowner. According to the owner, this cactus came to Canada after WW2. A male relative was fighting in Italy during WW2 and either found the plant there and brought back a piece, or was given a piece by a villager. The soldier tucked it carefully into his uniform and there it stayed. When the soldier returned, he potted up the piece and it’s been growing ever since.

The owner asked if Hubby wanted a piece, and of course he said yes! I was a little concerned at first. I’ve had Christmas Cacti before and they never seem to last, and as this little piece sat in a glass of water to root that fear came back. This little plant, part of a seventy-six year old plant had an incredible story, and I wanted to be able to tell people about it. It took a while; it’s a stubborn plant, but it rooted. Now this small cutting is thriving and I can hardly wait to see what colour the flowers will be. I’m keeping it on the kitchen table. It likes it there, so hopefully this holiday season we’ll have a beautiful centerpiece for our dinner.  

Five things Every Writer Should Know: Social Media.

I want to continue with the discussion from a few Mondays ago about social media.

The ‘experts’ state writers are to spend a certain amount of time blogging, tweeting and Facebooking about our book(s), and that it has to be ‘organic’, especially when it comes to Twitter. Problem is, the majority of writers have other things to do during the day, myself included. Goals like this can be a little hard to obtain, but it can be accomplished if you have a solid understanding of exactly what social media is.

Social media is the umbrella term used for online programs that connect people. World-wide there are roughly 15 or so popular platforms (depending on region), that encompass three forms of media; print, video, and picture. While many writers think social media is a pain, it is a necessary evil for this industry, but it can go a little easier if you understand a few things.

So here we go; five things writers should know about social media.

  1. It doesn’t have to be time consuming. 

Did you know you can schedule your posts on a majority of platforms? Blogs, Twitter, and Facebook have options that allow you to schedule, which means you can write out a pile of posts to schedule, which allows you to be consistent with your activity. This is a wonderful tool for writers and should be used all the time and takes some pressure off.

  • Post don’t have to be long. 

 I read an article years ago which stated that the perfect blog post length is around three-hundred words. This is mainly for blog posts, as Twitter already has a character limit. The shorter post are easier on the reader, who may subscribe to dozens of blogs and only a short time to read through them all. I keep mine between three to five hundred words (this one ended up being close to 700) depending on the topic, but it’s a good thought to keep in mind for other platforms as well. I consider short posts a lesson in creativity. Trying to convey what you want to say in as few as possible is a skill on its own.

  • Only do the platforms that you are comfortable with.

There are at least a dozen social media sites on the internet and each has its pros and cons, so do some research before you make an account. What is it you want to do? What kind of content do you want to create? More importantly, how much time are you willing to put into it. Video platforms are time consuming and require a modest amount of money for equipment or programs, while blogging sites are the easiest and require very little in the way of creating content other than writing.

  • There are rules.

Yes, whether you like it or not, there are etiquette rules for social media. Remember, just because you delete something online, doesn’t mean it’s gone forever. Think about what you want the world to see. The link below will take you to a site that can explain it better than I ever can.  

https://www.moneycrashers.com/social-media-etiquette-tips-personal-business/

  • Have fun!

I can’t stress this point hard enough. More than once I’ve stopped doing something online because it became more of a chore than something I looked forward to doing. Hence the reason I haven’t blogged a lot in the last few years. All these platforms are great to connect to people, but they do require some of your time to maintain. You have to want to do it, and have fun while you’re doing it. If it starts to lose it’s appeal or you just don’t feel like doing it anymore, that’s fine. Give yourself a break from it. As a writer, social media is important. Authors need a way to get the word out about new releases, and these platforms are the only way to do it, especially for new writers. This is why I suggested in #3 to only work with a few to start with.

There you have it; five things every writer should know about social media. Join me next week when I take a deeper look at blogs.

Have fun, and stay safe.

The Crystal Realm: Metaphysical Metals.

I want to take a break from crystals on this post and write about metals. As you all know, I love crystals. I, like million around the globe, believe strongly that they have an effect on the human body, but did you know that metal also has an effect? Just like crystals, metals interact with our personal energy field in much the same way. This is why jewelry can be a powerful talisman as it harnesses both the properties of the stone and the metal.

Like crystals, each type of metal has its associations with colour, positive/negative, planet, etc. One of the best books I’ve found on the subject is Scott Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Crystal, Gem & Metal Magic. His book is my go-to for any information on crystals and metal; with only sixteen entries but it covers a wide range of elements. Some, I’ve never even heard of, but like a lot of his books, the information is very detailed and in-depth.

From the book, he writes;

‘Metals have been used for thousands of years as tools for hunting and cooking, and they’ve also been used for spiritual connections as well. In ancient times, metals were seen as ‘the flesh of the gods and goddesses’, the bones of the Earth.’**.  

One of the uses for crystals is in jewelry, and as all are made with metal, combining them to work with a specific stone can amplify the energy for both. There’s not a bad combination of crystal to metal that I can think of, but you would be wise to choose a metal/crystal combination that are more compatible, for example;

Silver is often the metal of choice for jewelry with a moonstone. They are connected to the moon, and many pieces of Wiccan jewelry for full moon ritual consist of both. Silver and moonstone are also receptive, which means they draw energy toward them. Wiccans wear silver/moonstone jewelry during ritual to connect or receive energy from the Goddess and the moon.

Another popular combination is gold and diamond. Both have projective energy and are ruled by the sun. It’s interesting to note that the magical lore of a diamond doesn’t list love as an attribute (rose quartz is the love stone), but it’s thought that diamonds ensure fidelity, so a man giving his love a diamond ring could signify that the wearer is the only one for them.

Below is a list of the metals Mr. Cunningham has outlined in his book.

Antimony – projective, ruled by the Sun, element of fire. (Caution; Highly toxic)

Boji Stones – projective, ruled by Mars, element of fire & Akasha

Brass – projective, ruled by the Sun, element of fire.

Copper – receptive, ruled by Venus, element of water.

Gold – projective, ruled by the Sun, element of fire.

Iron – projective, ruled by Mars, element of fire.

Lead – receptive, ruled by Saturn, element of earth.

Lodestone – receptive, ruled by Venus, element of water.

Mercury – projective & receptive, ruled by Mercury, element of water, earth, air.

Meteorite – projective, ruled by the universe, element of Akasha, fire.

Pyrite – projective, ruled by Mars, element of fire.

Silver – receptive, ruled by the Moon, element of water.

Steel – projective, ruled by Mars, element of fire.

Tin – projective, ruled by Jupitor, element of air.

I highly recommend picking up Cunningham’s book for more information on metal and the magical properties associated with each. The appendix in the back has six chapters that detail all correspondence to not only the metals but the stones as well. This book is a must have for beginners learning about crystals.

Blessed be, and stay safe.

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