Holiday Wish Witchballs

For health, wealth, and good fortune in the new year.

  • Juniper Berries
  • Allspice Berries
  • Rosemary
  • Lavender
  • Honeysuckle
  • Bay Leaf
  • Oats or Oatstraw
  • Sea Salt

Mix as you see fit and pour carefully into glass or plastic ornaments. Ribbons, glitter, jingle bells, and craft gems make excellent additions for an aesthetically-pleasing charm. Decorate and distribute to your near-and-dear as gifts.

Happy Holiday Witching! 🙂

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Supermoon Wish Jars

To help harness the energy of the supermoon, or any full moon, to help your wishes come true, here’s a fun little project you can do by yourself or with your witchy friends. This also makes a nice activity for esbats that doesn’t require a lot of setup.

Materials:

  • Small Jar with tight-fitting lid
  • White or Black candle
  • Incense of your choice
  • Herbs and Items representing your wish

Find a clear space to work. Make sure it’s free of fire hazards. If possible, try to work near a window through which you can see the moon. (If you don’t have one, that’s all right too, since you’ll be setting the jar out for the moonlight when finished.) Light your candle and choice of incense and get to work.

Select herbs and trinkets which fit inside the jar to represent your wish. For example, if your wish is for money or prosperity, you might include coins or metallic glitter or small craft gems. If your wish is for health, you might include vitamin pills or a charm representing medicine.

Check your books for herbs or crystals that correspond to your wish as well, to give the jar plenty of oomph. The contents of the jar can be whatever you want. Use the materials that resonate best with you.

Some basic herbs for wishmaking include:

  • Bamboo
  • Bay Leaf
  • Beech
  • Black Walnut
  • Blue Violet
  • Buckthorn
  • Chicory Root
  • Dandelion Seeds
  • Dogwood Petals
  • Lotus Root
  • Nutmeg
  • Peppermint
  • Pomegranate
  • Sage Leaf (any color)
  • Sandalwood
  • Spearmint
  • Straw
  • Sunflower
  • Tonka Bean
  • Walnut
  • Willow Bark or Leaves

Once your jar is complete, drip three drops of wax from the candle into the jar and circle the mouth of the jar three times with the incense. Then seal the jar and place the jar somewhere that it will be touched by the light of the full moon and leave it overnight.

The jar should work for about a month, or slightly longer if you’re working with a supermoon. When the next full moon rolls around, you can recharge the jar by leaving it out overnight again, or make a new jar with a new wish.

Happy Witching!

Announcement – Witches&Pagans, Dec. 2017

Fantastic news, witchlings! A review of my best-selling book, Grovedaughter Witchery, is set to be published in the December issue of Witches&Pagans magazine!

I’ve read the advance copy of the review, written by one Hugh Eckert, and I can tell you – it’s a review that ANY author would be proud to have attached to their first solo effort. It’s a red-letter day when words like “impressive” and “innovative” are used to describe a book by an indie author in the pagan circuit.

Please join me in supporting the magazine by picking up a copy next month!

Mystic Moon Book-Signing, Nov. 18th

Attention Tidewater Pagans! It’s meet-and-greet time!

Working once again with the incomparable Deb Foley, I’m putting together a special book-signing event at Mystic Moon in Norfolk, VA.

The event is scheduled for Saturday, November 18th, likely from 12n – 4pm or thereabouts. Copies of Grovedaughter Witchery, Pestlework, and The Sisters Grimmoire will be available for purchase in the shop, and I will be available for autographs, photos, and to talk shop with my fellow witches.

Please feel free to stop by! Further updates to follow!

Lore Podcast, Episode 70 – “Familiar”

 

Those of you who have talked podcasts and/or folklore with me at some point may already know, but I LOVE the Lore podcast. Aaron Mahnke does all his homework and presents a practical view of mysterious events in history that is both engaging and serious without ever being dry. Every episode is spellbinding, and the latest one is no exception.

Episode 70, “Familiar,” deals with witches and witch trials. It’s a topic the podcast has covered before, most notably in episodes 12 (“Half-Hanged”), 28 (“Making A Mark”), 41 (“Hole in the Wall”), and 57 (“Quarantine”). There are others where witchcraft is mentioned, but those are the ones that stand out in my memory. This time around, Mahnke delves into the tale of Matthew Hopkins. If you’re a witch who also happens to be a student of English History, that name might inspire a wince, and with good reason.

During his sordid career in the 1600s, the self-styled “Witchfinder General” took advantage of superstition and religious upheaval to accuse, torture, and ultimately execute close to three hundred people, all on almost entirely baseless charges of witchcraft.  Some of you may recall me talking a lot about King James in relation to the standards and practices involved in persecuting witches. Oh yes, he’s mentioned here too.

Mahnke addresses the social circumstances, historical documents, and civil unrest which played into Hopkins’ rise to power, as well as the horrific consequences of his “work” and a poignant reminder of just how little society has changed.

This episode is a must for anyone looking for a historical perspective on witch trials, what caused them, and what actually happened during the period some modern revisionists term “the Burning Times.”

Updates – Oct. 1, 2017

It’s the most wonderful tiiiime of the year!

The air is crisp, the leaves are turning, the pumpkins are ripe, and the apples are plentiful. Which not only means that Halloween is coming, but also that NaNoWriMo is looming on the horizon.

Since last year’s book was such a success, I think I’ll be devoting my efforts this autumn toward my newest project, The Grovedaughter’s Year. The response I got from folks online when I first mentioned the idea was surprisingly positive, so I’m going to get my notes together and give it a go. I doubt it will be finished by the end of November, but I’m going to write it just the same. Whether it will be an ebook only or wind up long enough to justify a print version as well remains to be seen.

Nearly everything for the Year is either in my head or in my notes. It’s just a matter of coordinating everything and making it coherent. Apart from the obvious literary rewards, it will be helpful for me to have everything quantified.

The Table of Contents is already taking shape, with four basic sections covering various topics. This is definitely subject to change, but it’s certainly a start.

Section One: The Calendar Year

The Yearly Cycle (seasons, holidays, celebratory measures)
Patron Deities (four household deities & associations)
Other Entities (spirit helpers)

Section Two: The Household

The Altar (icons and setup with photos, offertory procedures)
Pets & Familiars (the cats & their duties, info on training)

Section Three: The Garden

Gardening (windowsill plants, growth magic, preparing herbs)
Walking the Woods (outdoor activities, wildcrafting, meditation)
Preferred Herbs & Spices (my go-to plants for various magics)

Section Four: The Craft

Laying the Groundwork (how to set spells into a new home)
Daily Measures (keying spells with a word or gesture)
Household Spells & Charms (selected household magic rituals)
Kitchen Craft (basic food magics and a few preferred recipes for such)
Weather Witching (selected rituals for weather magic)
Sigils & Symbols (protective sigils and ornaments)
Signs & Omens (my system of established signs and omens and their meanings)
A Word on Land Spirits (working with trees and elementals)
A Word on Household Sprites (working with sprites and brownies)
A Word on Ghosts and Spirit Visitors (for the witch who doesn’t want them)

If there’s something you’d like to know about my personal craft that you don’t see covered here, speak up! I’m still gathering material and I’m open to suggestions.

 

A Lesson For Young Witches

If you cannot find representations for a given element, remember…

You are supported by a rigid skeleton made of minerals. You are earth.

Your body is over 70% fluid. You are water.

Your lungs take in and expel breath. You are air.

Your blood is warm and your brain runs on electrical impulses. You are fire.

Your essence, however you describe it, resides within you. You are spirit.

You are composed of gifts from every element, and every element is given marvelous life in you.

Never feel that you are insufficiently magical for lack of icons or accoutrements or accessories.

You are ALWAYS magic. You are ALWAYS enough.