I did a wrap-up of my 2018. I also announce that what Ember HoneyRaven and I have been plotting has gone live! Get the details here.
For this episode of TBH, our wrangler has asked us to explore the concept of cozy. Cozy is such a lovely word, isn’t it? I thought I might share a recipe with you, but my coziest recipe is tea and toast. Right? Who needs a recipe for tea and toast. My others are mac-and-cheese and tuna. I know, tuna, right? Who has tuna for
Right now, cozy is a word that is not finding a home in my daily vocabulary. I’ve been up to my earballs (that’s a joke in my family) in alligators that looked a lot like back-to-back issues of The Cartomancer. I got behind on Fall so Winter was right on the heels of it. I mean I got the Fall issue in the mail on 12/14, then picked up the Winter issue on 12/20. Guess what I’ll be doing while you are blithely hopping away? HA!
So back to cozy. Cozy for me is wrapping up in a quilt. Then snuggling into my pillows while burying my nose in a really good book. Lately, my reading has been nearly all done on Audible. I’m currently loving re-listening to the Bloody Jack series. It’s about a young girl named Mary Faber who goes on all sorts of madcap adventures. It’s not horror despite the name. Just a fun read.
But that’s cozy to me. Reading while wrapped in a blanket. Or, as I did as a girl, reading while up a tree. True story! There was a gorgeous live oak in my front yard. It had a perfect place to lean back for a reading nook. My mother used to pitch acorns at me to get my attention.
So, to make a long post longer, cozy is that feeling of blissful quiet. That precious instance of time when I can sit in absolute stillness with no noise other than nature. The card that brings to mind is the Four of Swords. It is my meditation card, my “quiet times are necessary” card, my “tell the world to shut up” card.
What about you? What is your idea of cozy? Happy Yule, y’all. Merry Christmas. Joyous Solstice. Happy Hanukkah. Celebrate Kwanzaa. However you do it, make your winter/summer solstice cozy.
“Our religion keeps reminding us that we aren’t just will and thoughts. We are also sand and wind and thunder. Rain. The seasons. You learn to respect everything because you are everything.” ~ William Least Heat Moon 1939-
Welcome to the 2018 Samhain Tarot Blog Hop wrangled by Aisling. She asked us to explore our beloved dead. Although she gave us three questions (and I did stay on script for one), I’m actually reusing an old post from 2012. It’s about my most beloved dead, my mother. Of all those who have preceded me in death, I miss her the most.
I was blessed with a mother who wasn’t overly religious although she was a faithful woman. She grew up Catholic, then raised my sister and me in the Episcopal faith. She attended the Methodist church with her second husband while beginning her drift back to her childhood faith of Catholicism. She allowed me, albeit regretfully, to leave the Christian path without making it hard on me. She didn’t like it. I know this. I also know that she wanted me to be happy and secure. So she didn’t make my religious choice a bone of contention. And she certainly could have. She was a strong woman from some very strong women. In my family, the matriarchs have always stood out.
My Mama had a German-Scot Mama and a Scot-Irish Papa. While her mama, my Grannilu, was not someone I remember as a good cook, Mama said there were good cooks in her family. She passed her love of starchy potatoes and stinky cabbage on to me with this dish. It’s one she found later in life. Like her, I’m a collector or recipes. I even cook some of them. ? She made this for me for one of my homecoming meals and I loved it then as I love it now. Even die-hard cabbage haters will fall for this treat!
Because it’s something I closely identify with Mama, I knew this one had to be a Queen (the Empress was already taken, sorry Mama!). The Queen of Cups might seem like the perfect choice but my Mama was a sharp-edged Scorpio. She was funny–brilliantly so at times and almost always pointed and sharp insightful humor. I knew her as a widow most of my life (she remarried when I was in my early 20’s). Her friends were classy, stylish women (when they weren’t being redneck haints.) She was a classy, stylish woman whom I adored her. She wasn’t the cookie-baking, soccer mom but she was the take-you-to-the-library, defend-you-tooth-and-nail mom. I’m lucky to have had the time I did with her. So she is the Queen of Swords to me. And it would have tickled her to be the Queen of Bats as she loved nature.
Queen of Swords Cabbage Au Gratin
1 head cabbage, shredded
4 cups water
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup dry breadcrumbs (divided)
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 beaten egg
1-1/2 cup grated cheese (divided)
1-1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 pound bacon
Brown bacon, set aside
Cook cabbage in water 10 minutes. Drain.
Beat egg, cream, and seasonings together.
Layer cabbage in a casserole pan with egg mixture and remaining ingredients, except bacon. Reserve some of the breadcrumbs and cheese for topping.
Place chopped bacon on top of the casserole, dot with butter and bake in a preheated 350° F. oven for 30 minutes.
Arwen says: Mama didn’t do the bacon and I don’t either. Just a sodium overload!
I hope you will let me know if you try this. I think I’ll make some this week. If you are Catholic, maybe you’d like to light a candle at Mary’s altar for my mama. Her name was Marilu. ? I’ll light a candle on my own altar. Don’t let religion come between you and those you love. It’s really not worth it. Instead, share a meal and a blessing that you have friends and family who care about you enough to worry about you.
Here’s to all of us and our beloved dead. We are blessed to have the ability to choose who we call family. “You learn to respect everything because you are everything.” Thanks to William Least Heat Moon for that. Now go hop to the next blog to see what they have to say about Samhain and our beloved dead.
Balance was the focus for me on my recent retreat with Joanna Colbert. We each did work with our ancestors to discover what it was that needed to be worked on. Mine was balance. We did a sacred dance with Jennifer Lucero-Earle where I danced my dance of balance to MaMuse Natural Order .
For me, Mabon is balance. Our TarotBlogHop wranglers, Jenn and Louise, have asked that we look at how balance can be restored. I am going to tackle that in this blog. You will also see me on another blog post in this hop. I decided to tackle two. Balance, yes?
So, the question of “how can balance be restored” presumes that balance has been lost. I propose that we don’t lose balance so much as we get a bit off-axis, if you will. By that I mean we wobble. Wobbling can be scary if you aren’t expecting it. Like being on a plane that suddenly hits turbulence. I don’t know about you, but I get REALLY anxious if the plane starts doing a jig without warning. You?
The thing is the crew is trained for this. I’ve learned to watch them. If they aren’t running and screaming as if Cthulhu has arrived, I do so deep breathing (after rechecking my seat belt, of course.) They’re not off-balance. They are still doing what they do. It also taught me to check myself before I wreck myself. Usually this works. There have been times when I’ve gone off completely unhinged. That’s so embarrassing to me.
Embarrassment and I are really good friends, though. I’m good at laughing at myself…eventually. Of course, in the moment? Not so much. But being truly out-of-balance or needing to restore balance? That’s tricky if you are self-correcting a mere wobble. There’s a high possibility you will over-correct. Which can be worse than the initial wobble. For example, think of a teen who breaks curfew one time (for any reason). Their parental unit goes nuclear telling them their curfew is now back to 7:30 as if they were eight years old. Any bets on how fast that teenager is going to sneak out? Start ignoring all the rules because, obviously, their parent is a tyrant? In teenage think, that is.
What if the parent had said “Okay, that’s one. You only get one because I don’t play baseball. Home by curfew or don’t expect to go out until your next birthday.” I’m not a parent so your mileage may vary. If that doesn’t work for you, let’s try cooking. You make a dish. You put in twice as much salt as you should rendering it inedible. An over-correction would be “I vow I’ll never make that dish again.” Right? All you need to do is pay a bit more attention.
I associate balance in the Tarot with the two cards. Each one has a message of what can happen if you do too much of one thing. Justice, card 11, and the High Priestess, card 2, and Judgment, card 20, are also two’s in my view. Think about what is wobbling in your life right now. How can you apply gentle correction to pull yourself back into balance? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.
Theme: “The Sun Harvest”
The Sun Harvest — What end of summer harvest do you want to bring in before fall (spring for those on the other side of the equator)?
Many words must go here before Wednesday 8/1 2pm
Harvest. Too often we think of this as something done in fields or gardens with tractors or baskets. Harvest is so much bigger than that. At the start of this year, I set up a few goals using my Metaphysicians Day Planner (it is coming soon so make sure you are on Benebell’s list!) That link is just to tell you about it. I said I wanted to some things. I wrote those things down. I didn’t really follow up on using my planner after about May. I’m going to get back into it. As soon as I remember where I put it…
Anyway, I wanted to teach a class, write a book, improve housekeeping skills as at least three of my goals. So now is the time to look at not just those ideas I planted but the work I put into them. Benign neglect really isn’t that great as a metaphor for growth work. I wish it were but it is really only true for tomatoes (and the like) in really good weather conditions.
Truth be told, I’m not currently experiencing really good weather conditions. I’m struggling to seek joy, but, by the Gods, I will do it. This is temporary. I’m pretty much chanting that to myself. The only reason I’m doing this post is … it’s my turn to wrangle. Kinda shitty to not actually do a blog.
One of the other things I wanted to do this year was to be authentic. Now there’s a self-fulfilling prophecy if I’ve ever uttered one. And? Harvesting that shit right now. I’m not doing my daily Facebook messages due to a tooth-and-nail battle with depression. The kind that has me snot-crying while cleaning the kitchen or curling up for four-hour naps. TIP: There is no such thing as a four-hour nap. That’s a four-hour crash-and-burn escape.
Back to harvest. Back before this current medically-induced depression episode (true story…I put in my refill request two days early but my THEN provider didn’t bother to call me to tell me I needed to come in. So I went for a week thinking it was the pharmacy’s fault when it wasn’t. When I called the provider, she was flat-out rude to me (confirmed by my husband unit who heard the conversation.) I’m changing providers obviously. ANYWHO! Harvest. Sun. Tarot Blog. I am a one-track whine today! Yes, today. I’m writing this local time noon. HA! Two hours to blog launch.
Class. That was one of my seeds at the beginning of the year. I had my 30 Days & 30 Ways out. Then I re-released my Trust Your Gut Intuitive Tarot (9 weeks) class as a self-paced class too. I really wanted to be a part of Ethony Dawn’s Tarot Reader Acacademy’s Summer School. I reached out to her to let her know that I would like to be a part of the 2019 masters if she had room. Turns out she had room for this iteration. My class just went live 7/26. I’ve already gotten several pieces of feedback. One which said, ”
I just had to share that I am thoroughly enjoying a freaking fantastic course by Arwen Lynch Poe via the Tarot Academy. I admit I can have a snobbish attitude at times after about 38 years of studying (and practicing) Astrology & Tarot, but let me tell you, when I hit upon something that actually is not only fun, but EFFECTIVE, I just have to give credit where credit is due: Arwen’s course on Spellcrafting with Tarot & the Hero’s Journey has shifted some major pieces in my Psyche! I’ve been teaching Hero’s Journey work in my Astrological practice and in my Lunar Priestess program, so I’m very familiar with the material..AND again, this format and the prompts that Arwen has in her Tarot course (plus her related book which is on Amazon), have truly given me profound insights and TOOLS that I was able to immediately apply to my Life. Take this post for what it’s worth my friends: A glowing THANK YOU to a fellow Tarot journeyer who truly opened up new pathways for a proverbial ‘know-it-all’ (yes, the Pisces in me tries to keep ‘that’ part of Sagittarius in check, lol). Go, check it out, sign up and shift:Bit.ly/SummerArwen ”
So that was a lovely piece of harvest bonus today.
I also wanted to write a book. That didn’t happen but I have been working on a USGames project that is close to done. See latest project here: Practical Wisdom Tarot.
Last I wanted to improve housekeeping skills. Y’all, I truly suck at housekeeping. I’ve gotten better but generally because the husband unit reminds me. Seriously, if you judge others because they have a messy house, add me to that list.
So that’s my first harvest for the year. Lammas is a first harvest festival with Mabon and Samhain being the next two. OH! I did manage to get two issues of the Cartomancer out (next one is for Fall then Winter. ) What’s your harvest been like?
Here’s a spread to help if you like.
- Seed: This is what you want to grow so pick this card intentionally
- Ground: This is where you need to plant the seed
- Fertilizer: This is what you need to help the seed to grow
- Work: This is what you must focus on for the best growth
- Harvest: This is the reward of the growth. Rather than the seed, this is what potential comes from the work.
Here are the cards I drew (with the first one being intentional). The shape is apropos of nothing. It just worked on my scanner. This deck is the Our Tarot by Sarah Shipman.
(image not loading. Blaming it on Mercury Rx. Will try again later.)
Seed: The Emperor shown as Victoria (one of my all-time favorite royal personages) is the card I picked for my seed. I want to be in charge of my own life in such a way that I can set rules and boundaries. This is a freedom I crave. I need more financial autonomy which is one of the things the Emperor makes me think of. First quote from Victoria? “We are not interested in the possibilities of defeat. They do not exist.” Well alright then, Queen Victoria.
Ground: Four of Swords with Simone Weil. Plant this intention in a calm, quiet way. Find a place within that is sheltered from anxiety. Make a meditation garden within. Interestingly enough, here is the quote that came up when I googled her. <i “>To be rooted is perhaps the most important and least recognized need of the human soul. I think that speaks very well to the ground.
Fertilizer: Two of Cups with the Ladies of Llangollen, Eleanor Butler and Sarah Ponsonby. Their love for one another eschewed all societal demands. They chose to live with one another even after their families tried to force them apart. They are presumed, perhaps erroneously, to have had a sexual relationship. But this fertilizer tells me to love this seed into being. To not let my own or anyone else’s perceived criticism cause it to shrivel and die. Couldn’t find a quote from these two other than books and plays.
Work: Ace of Swords with Dr. Mae Jemison, the first black female astronaut. Pioneer, much? Trailblazer, much? The first quote from her is “Never limit yourself because of others’ limited imagination; never limit others because of your own limited imagination.” That plays quite nicely into the idea of work that must be done and done and done some more. No limits.
Harvest: The Lovers portrayed by Jane Addams and Ellen Gates Starr who cofounded Hull House in 1889. More pioneers for the harvest. I think this says that I can expect my harvest to be something of a pioneering nature. So is it something that will be pioneering for me in the since that it will be a discovery of self? Or is it pioneering for others? I guess that remains to be seen. The first quote I found from Jane Addams: “The good we secure for ourselves is precarious and uncertain until it is secured for all of us and incorporated into our common life.” Good for all or it’s not good enough
Joy is our wrangler. I just got to hug Joy’s neck this past Monday because I was in Denver. 😀 So I’m starting this out with a happy heart. She’s asked us to do another musical blog hop like last time. Well, sort of like last time. I didn’t get to do the last one as I was at Readers Studio. Seems like I’ve been traveling a lot.
Or as my husband says, “I’ve been everywhere, man. I’ve been everywhere.” He and I are prone to quoting songs off-the-cuff. He quotes them correctly. I am just as likely to say “I love industry” as “Islands in the Stream” so don’t quote me! Also, I think every rock song is by Bon Jovi. I am much better at pre-80’s music.
Our task was to choose from a long list of possibilities. I decided to match up some (not all) of the Court cards with songs. I’m not doing all because I’m hoping you will add your suggestions in the comments. Homework is a must since I am teaching summer school this year complete with candles, rituals, and spells. Oh, and Tarot too.
Driving home from Denver, I had my music on shuffle. It went from Loreena McKinnett to Trisha Yearwood to The Commodores to Annie Lennox. I had a lot of fun trying to decide which court card went to which song.
So the Knight of Cups was easiest for me. He’s got to be Take Me To The River (my version is Annie Lennox although I also have Forrest Sawyer’s version too.)
Washing me down, washing me
Hug me, squeeze me, love me, tease me
Till I can’t, till I can’t, till I can’t take no more of it
Take me to the water, drop me in the river
Push me in the water, drop me in the river
Washing me down, washing me down
I don’t know why I love you like I do
All the troubles you put me through
Sixteen candles there on my wall
And here am I the biggest fool of them all
Then I figured that the passionate Queen of Wands would be a perfect fit for Heaven, Heartache, and The Power Of Love by Trisha Yearwood.
They say up in Heaven the streets are gold
Once you get past the Pearly Gates
And the angels are singin’
At the top of a dove white staircase
And I say heartache can burn you down like hell
Leave you beggin’, “Baby, please don’t go”
‘Til you’re scrapin’ rock bottom
And cryin’ in a deep dark hole
Oh, and love can make you fly like a rocket
Put you on top of the world
I’m talkin’ ’bout
Heaven is where I hope I’m goin’
Heartache, that’s where I’ve been
Heaven, heartache and the power of love
Last, but certainly not least is the King of Coins who must be All The Gold In California by the Gatlin Brothers.
All the gold in California
Is in the bank in the middle of Beverly Hills
In somebody else’s name.
So if you’re dreamin’ about California,
It don’t matter at all where you’ve played before.
California’s a brand-new game.Tryin’ to be a hero, winding up a zero,
Can scar a man forever right down to your soul.
Living on the spotlight can kill a man outright
‘Cause everything that glitters is not gold.All the gold in CaliforniaIs in the bank in the middle of Beverly HillsIn somebody else’s name.So if you’re dreamin’ about California,It don’t matter at all where you’ve played before.California’s a brand-new game.
So, what about you? What are your songs for court cards? Maybe Taylor Swift’s Love Story for the Page of Cups? Leave me a comment. Tell me what you think. And please, come check out summer school! I’d love to see you in class.
I collect and sell decks. These range from card decks to Tarot to Lenormand to Kipper to Oracle and more. If a deck is new in box, it will be marked NIB. I do my best not to undersell someone’s deck. By that I mean, if the deck is still available from the creator, I will do my best to price in line with their pricing.
I do mark things as 1st or 2nd edition (or whatever that might be.) On some I do not know. I will be uploading images as well for each deck. If you see a deck that you would like more pictures of, just let me know. I will NOT open NIB decks. Sealed is sealed.
This is my junk drawer category. Here you will find everything that doesn’t fit one of my other categories. Most of this will be things out of boxes I got at auction. I tend to want one or two things but get the whole box. So, if you see something you like, snag it. In this category I am very open to OBO’s (Or Best Offer.) Please email me at readings AT tarotbyarwen.com if you want to talk price.
Here are my stones for sale. All stones are cleansed by me but not charged. If you would like them charged, please indicate that in the PayPal notes area. I do not charge extra for charging. When I charge, I am charging for the purpose of the stone’s energy to sync with your energy. You can see larger (okay, freaking HUGE) images by clicking on the thumbnail.