Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Minions on Money

The Bug trying to rip the new 100 dollar bill
Canada released it's new 100 dollar bill this past week.  We got one for the minions to check out. We talked about some of the new security measures.  The minions thought the durable polymer was a really good idea and tested it thoroughly. Then we talked about counterfeiting and why it is wrong and how it effects everyone this lead to a discussion on monetary systems touching on some of the ancients systems and what different cultures looked at as valuable and that lead to discussing barter. We talked about greed and the state of our world today because of the worship of money. We talked a bit about class systems as well. one thing I found fascinating was that even tho the minions know why we have money they all agree that other systems would be better and were quite baffled as to why it still exists. The innocence and lack of corruption they show in this money driven world gives me such hope.
Great quotes from the minions: 
The Bug - "well I think its pretty silly that how much paper we have says how much power we have!"

King Connaher- " jeez why don't people view value by who a person is and what they do, no wonder our worlds so screwed up."
"Paper doesn't even feel like it should have worth at least gold was heavy."

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Cooking with the Bug

Cooking is a very important skill one that I believe is essential for happiness. A good meal goes beyond filling the belly it can make one feel truly loved. I LOVE to cook and that love of cooking was passed on from my parents and hubby is a chef so it was a no brainer that the minions would be taught to cook. They all love to cook and are very good at it. They have been cooking with us since they were tiny. Zed is all grown up and living on his own now and does all of the cooking in his home. He regularly wows his friends with his skills. King Conaher is famous for his bizzare and yet tasty creations. He is by far the most adventurous when it comes to food and melding flavors. Willowtree loves to bake so much that she has been tossing the idea around of becoming a pastry chef. The Bug at seven has decided that she can do it all by herself now :) So she made her first recipie with Mommy only observing. She chose one that she has made alot before Meringues.
The Shrek cookbook is her favorite
only two ingredients makes it perfect for little bakers
Sorry don`t have any pics of the actual mixing but her biggest challange is still seperating the yolks from the whites.
Dropping by the spoonful onto parchment paper

Ready for the oven

 She went on to make a chocolate batch after these mmmm yummy.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Mabon 2011

A few days before Mabon we were surprised by a visit from an old neighbor. She brought a gift of harvest bounty two overflowing bags of apples. Such a beautiful gift and very much in the spirit of Mabon, the harvest of fruits and vegetables. This gift of Apples means so much to us as Apples are a sacred symbol in our family
trad. I incorporated them into our Mabon feast

Roast Turkey~ a gift from my Mom at Lughnasadh
Roast Turkey
Savory apple and grape stuffing~ Grapes are a wonderful mabon symbol and we had these tiny champagne grapes so I used them instead of raisins in the stuffing it turned out awsome!
Cheesy smashed cauliflower
Steamed baby potatos with Turkey gravy
cranberry sauce
Stuffed squash
  grew the squash myself  :)
 and for dessert.....
Baked pears with an amaretto cream sauce...these were absolutely divine

We gathered with friends and family shared in the bounty of the earth and gave thanks.
Bountiful Blessings from our house to yours

and the rest of the apples they are being made into applesauce, apple pie filling and sour cream apple pudding.

Saturday, September 17, 2011


Recent events have made me realize something I am seriously stressed out and that confuses the hell out of me because I thought I was a pretty stress free person.
Now here in lies my dilemma. The things that the professionals and Doctors are telling me are stress are things that I have always just rolled with so hmmmm am I really stressed?
Well my body seems to be telling me I am. I have been diagnosed with TMD (Temporomandibular Disorder). At the specialists appointment I was told repetitively the main cause of TMD is stress.
So now I re-examine my my roll with it attitude really as stress free as I think it is and are there other stressers in my life I am not seeing or am I going to discover in the end it has nothing to do with stress and I am stressing for nothing LOL

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

What is Natural learning?

Today I was watching The Bug create a world in the game Little Big Planet, she was telling me about creating the flowers then dressing up her sack puppet as a flower to blend in. I casually told her that was called camouflage…she then went on to show me how she could camouflage her character as many different things each time using the word properly and repetitively to master it and add it to her own vocabulary.  Over the course of a half hour game session we talked about camouflage in the natural world and how animals, plants and people camouflage themselves for survival and various other reasons.  We touched on multiple subjects from Biology to Psychology and covered content that would be considered way beyond her grade level and by the time she was done with the subject she had a diverse and thorough grasp of the word and multiple examples to refer back to and use in the future.
This is a perfect example of how we learn…..we call it Natural learning. My definition is…being mindful and present in your child’s world, being able to recognize and seize the opportunities to expand their knowledge using their own world and interests.
I know it seems really simple but it really isn’t, you have to arm yourself as the parent with a wide variety of knowledge and really pay attention to what your children’s interests are. Then research if need be and be creative in presenting what you can to add to their experience without pushing to much on them and either overloading them or boring them out of a genuine interest. You have to be able to see things from many perspectives and find ways to intertwine those interests with other subjects so you can to foster other learning experiences. Now you can’t always do that but nine times out of ten it works and it is best if you can do it all with out being obvious. In our world it has become so much more than a learning style it‘s a lifestyle. 

Sunday, August 7, 2011

We Love Lughnasadh

I love Lughnasadh because I was born to, being born the eve of Lughnasadh.
The Minions love Lughnasadh for two reasons, The games and The God's sauce!

In our family tradition we have a ritual that reaches back into pre history that has been given a modern twist that has helped to make it a favorite.
Lughnasadh celebrates the first harvest with special significance given to grains and corn. We live in prairie country so this holiday has great significance to us and  having come from farmer stock this festival is deep in our roots. At Lughnasadh the God knows he has to sacrifice himself to the underworld for the dark time of the year and he starts to prepare. In order for there to be renewal He must be re-born. The people ensure this by taking part of the God into themselves. This was usually done in the form of bread baked into the shape of a man or phallus that was ritually torn apart and eaten.
Our Bread God

In our tradition we give homage as well to the potency of the Gods seed by adding an amazing sauce that the bread is dipped in. Now because my Minions have done this ritual since birth they understand the solemness of the ritual and do it with reverence. When introduced to new people it usually raises eyebrows and produces giggles. The minions look forward to Lughnasadh all year because of the incredibly yummy sauce :)

Bread God Sacrifice with a side of God Sauce for dipping

After the ritual it was time for The Games and they are always a favorite :) This year our games consisted of...

The Caber Toss
King Connaher with the Caber
  The Log Throw
King Connaher and his cousin doing the Log throw
  Hammer throw
The Bug doing the Hammer throw
Stone Put  
WillowTree about to do the Stone Put
Foot races 
The minions and Thier cousin doing foot races
Sword play

We feast at all of our celebrations. This year on the menu was Roasted Rosemary Chicken. Corn on the cob with fresh butter, Homemade bread, Cornbread and sweet bread and God sauce for dessert.
Fresh homemade bread and Corn bread
Roasted rosemary chickens

Like all of our celebrations we spent the day together as a family, strengthening our bonds with each other, our faith and our history. It was an amazing day!! 

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Natural Learning Natural Magick

Zed turned 18 on Imbolc this year. At the end of February he moved out on his own. Regina, Saskatchewan is along way from home and he has not been back to visit yet. He is planning on coming in September but that is a long way away and his baby sister Bug is missing him something fierce. The other day she brought down her globe from her room got a large piece of paper and started working away at the table. I asked her what she was up to and she told me that she had to make the globe into a map so that she could scry for her brother.

Right there geography lesson in the works inspired by who The Bug herself natural learning at its best! When she was done her map she went and got one of her magickal pendants and proceeded to scry for her brother.  Now in her seven years she has seen myself, her sister and her aunts scry and use pendulums for
various things I never realized how closely she paid attention and Wow! did she make her Mama proud :)

After a few minutes I suggested that we make a map of Canada instead of the world because that would narrow it down and may make it easier. So we roughed out a map of Canada and she started again and BAM down goes her pendant right in the middle of lower Saskatchewan she turned to me beaming and said "Found him Mom!" and I stood there filled with so much pride and said "You sure did sweetie!" Magick comes so easy to the innocent.

Monday, June 6, 2011

A walk in the woods

The Bug, myself and a friend went exploring in our local woodland. It was a magical day!
We found many amazing gifts!

A little Oak trying to make its way. We helped by clearing some of the plants around him so he can grow big and strong.
A field of wild strawberries. We will be revisiting this in the near future.
and many mushrooms...beautiful to look at but NOT edible

Faerie gifts

and best of all MORELS edible and mmmmYummy!

We fried these in butter, such a yummy treat.
We had such a great day walking in the woods!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The Wand in the Willows

I recently read a blog post on wands, it was the buy or make debate and as any good pagan knows make always wins.

I come from rural Alberta and around my hometown there are Poplar, Birch and Willow groves. For decades we have maintained a sacred grove here and have several sacred sites that we use for various reasons, one of them is a Willow grove that produces beautiful diamond willow. Three generations of sacred tools (wands, staffs and staves) have been found here by my family circle and it is where on a trip there many many years ago my wand began…I chose Litha for my wand finding pilgrimage. my Dad drove me out in the late evening to the Willow grove and went off on his own to leave me to my search. I wandered around a bit just drinking in the feel of the place and talking with the Willows, touching them, singing to them, raising energy as I explained why I was there and that I hoped to be honored with a wand. I left an offering of an apple for the Goddess and God, a small quartz and a dime for the Willows and the Fae then sat down to commune with the spirits of the grove, after a while I felt a pull toward the northern area of the grove with the whisper of sister sister sister and on the ground in front of the most sensual willow ever was the beginning of my wand and it was exactly what I had envisioned
I was so giddy I squealed and so excited I almost ran out of the grove to the truck with out saying thank you ( J remembering it still gives me the thrill of excitement) I caught myself tho and thanked the Goddess and the Willows for such and amazing gift!!
Over the next couple weeks I stripped and sanded all of the bark off, carefully carving and sanding out the diamonds, singing power into my wand with every session. I rubbed it with my personal power oil and thought I was ready to dedicate it. I took it to show my parents and my Dad asked me if I thought it was finished? Did it feel balanced to me? I told him that it was as best as it was going to get my original idea had been a wand woven of different woods and that was not this wand. He said no but we could incorporate other woods if I wanted and that he would show me how. My dad was an amazing woodworker and he helped me to make my wand perfect. We discussed the woods I wanted to use and why. I wanted to add Oak for the God and Birch for the Goddess and I wanted them to some how support the main part of the wand the Willow which I  consider my tree, I have been drawn to it since I was a child and love it so much I named my first born daughter in its honor. So my father helped me to created the perfect handle half Birch and the other half Oak then we turned it on the lathe to make it a perfect fit for my hand. He showed me the secrets of splicing the wood together and helped me to fit it to the main willow part but it still was not finished. I really wanted a crystal at the end and in true form my Dad already knew that :) he pulled out a quartz point that he had collected in the Caribou Mountains when we lived up north. We fitted the point and now it was PERFECT!! It was dedicated on my birthday which is the eve of Lughnasadh. I have made three other wands since for various reasons but MY wand is my favorite tool and this spring my oldest daughter will begin crafting hers after a pilgrimage to the Willow grove.

MY Wand

Half Birch Half Oak handle
Quartz point

Saturday, January 1, 2011

The beginning of some catch up.

Now that the holidays are over I can breath a bit and catch up on a very neglected blog. So over the next little while my posts will be all over as I cover a bunch of stuff that I have wanted to get on here. The minions have been doing all sorts of stuff, they learned some pretty cool things and have had some fun adventures and Zed learned all about the harsh reality of being LAID OFF but as always another door opened.......

The night of the 23 he was informed that his company had no more jobs and until they did the crew was laid off, this is the first time that Zed has had to deal with a unexpected loss of work so he was pretty upset. I thought to myself "nice timing jerks", now Zed is a teenager and really does not NEED his job but the other guys on his crew do and one of them is a brand new father, really what kind of people do lay offs on the 23rd of December!! I told Zed maybe he should just look for a new job because does he really want to work for people like that, He agreed. So I mentioned to a friend of mine that Zed was looking for work and he put in a good word and Zed now has a new job framing houses. He is very excited that he will be working in the carpentry field. Wood has always been a big part of our world, one of my Dads passions was wood work and he made beautiful firniture. When Hubby and I were first married we worked with Dad logging for three years, they were great years. The smell of sawdust and woodsmoke are some of the most comforting smells in our world. So as one door closes another opens I hope Zed can make his way in this trade and that he finds as much joy working with wood as his Grandfather did.