Update 9/21/17

Well, work has me run ragged, and we’re still recovering from the move. Also this week, my mother ended up in the hospital for a week (she’s fine now and recovering). So the Fall Equinox has kind of caught me by surprise. Normally I start to notice Freyr going back into the Mound around August 1, once the days start getting noticeably shorter, but it’s Mabon, to use the Wiccan term, and Freyr’s still up and kicking–around here, at least. (We’re in the middle of a week of 90+ temps, so it certainly doesn’t feel like fall yet.) But the cycles are turning, and Freyr will be down soon.

In the honor of His and Gerda’s marriage, I am putting together a short reenactment ritual which honors Their marriage and its connection with the changing of the seasons. It will take place in my favorite secluded glade in my hometown, surrounded by overhanging trees, adjacent to the local public rose garden. We’ll have a picnic dinner after the ritual. If all goes as planned, it will be idyllic 🙂 Wish me luck!

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The Lord and the Lady, by Faeriewood

October 2015 update–Public stuff *all day* up in this joint

It’s been a month of all public things, all of the time. This is what happens when I put my head down and just keep doing what’s put in front of me to do.

Started the month with a Patheos post that unexpectedly went viral. Who knew that an article about the pros and cons of dedicating to a deity would be so popular? I honestly don’t think I said much that was completely new or novel. (Would that it were also one of my better written ones. C’est la vie.)

I followed this with my first public Heathen ritual in the area, Winternights. Winternights went well, even though the boyfriend was only able to attend the last round of the sumbel. It was a great small crowd with plenty of food and a lot of people trying out a heathen ritual for the first time.

Then I did my second Patheos column of the month, on ancestor veneration. (Which as not nearly as popular. Maybe people are just ancestor-ed out by now; I totally understand.)

Then I finally fixed the settings on my email from The Troth and was able to do an intro post there, and got some great suggestions and connections for my area. Heathens! Near me! Woot!

And I found out that not only did my Facets of Freya panel get accepted for PCon 2016, I’m also going to be in another Vanic-based ritual run by EmberVoices. And Jason, editor of the Pagan column at Patheos, wants me to be part of a Patheos authors panel at Convocation 2016 (which I’ve never even attended).

And then Sunday night I got an email from the organizer of our CUUPs group that a local reporter wanted to interview some of us for an article for the local paper. One thing led to another, and somehow I (or my altar stuff) ended up being in all of the pics. Good-sized article. For my hometown newspaper. Where many of my very Lutheran relatives live.

I hadn’t realized when this all started that newspapers need to use my given name and not my pagan name.

So now I’m outed to anyone who actually reads our local newspaper (which, considering the age of my relatives in town, will be all of my relatives.) So while part of me is like, woot! I’m in the paper!, the other part of me is like, Well, no more broom closet for you….  At least my very Christian grandfather is dead. I can deal with “religious disappointment face” from anyone but him. 😦 At this point he is a beloved ancestor and I don’t think he cares much one way or the other what I get up to, religion-wise, as long as I remember him. Funny how things work out. When I left home to go to college 20 years ago, I never dreamed I be back here now, staying with my parents, and appearing face-first in an article on local pagans. It boggles the mind.

I’ve been handed so many opportunities since I moved–as if given to me on a silver platter. So much less stressful than if I had tried to orchestrate it all.

A year and a half ago I couldn’t imagine actually blogging for a real blog. Or starting my own Heathen group. Or leading Heathen events solo. Or organizing a ritual for PCon. Or being willing to be interviewed by the media for anything pagan that also included my given name. Or moving back home and dating a Hellboy. 😉 (I couldn’t imagine moving back to my hometown, period.) But here I am.

In program, we say that we need to change our reaction to what the Gods give us from “No, but…” to “Yes, thanks.” i.e., be open to what’s given to us and not have a hissy fit trying to force what we think should be happening instead. At this point, all I’m doing ischecking my fear-based reactions and just saying “yes” and trying not to have any expectations of what will happen afterwards. I’m completely serious when I say that I have no idea what will happen next. And that’s okay. I just hope whatever happens nexts involves more contact with my Gods/ancestor/landwights, my boyfriend, my friends and my growing community out here, and my family.

So far, so good?

A-hailing we will go

A quick post about this now so I don’t forget to do so later.

I was blessed to spend a lovely, low-key night after Beltane with a good friend and fellow priestess, Ms. River Devora. We ended up, as many nights do when two or more priestesses are gathered together, shopping with the Gods (this evening, Njord and Freya in particular). My “version” of Freya loves Her raspberries (strawberries are too sweet), dark chocolate, and strong, sweet coffee. We also grabbed a large bottle of organic, small-batch apricot ale (not the usual Pyramid apricot ale, which is also very yummy) which Njord strongly insisted on having (he tends to like new and interesting alcohols, as well as most beers and gins) and we picked up some Dogfish pale ale for the hell of it.  As it turns out, we drank all of the ale, which almost never happens (a very rare occurrence among Heathens, I know :p ).

How did two relatively non-drinkers go through  so much beer? By hailing, of course! This is how we did it:

1. Make thick, sweet coffee for Freya and assorted household deities

2. Set it out for Her, with raspberries and dark chocolate for all.

3. Pop open a couple of beers, with no particular goal in mind.

4. Decide that it’s been way too long since we had an official pass-the horn-until–all-the-alcohol-is-gone blot, and get started.

5. Hail as many deities as we could remember, starting with the household’s deities, and moving on to: all of the Vanir; the Aesir; svartalfs; light alfs; personal spirits and wights; ancestors (both dead and living–so bad, I know!). Tangent into Muppet songs; tangent back to the Norse and Germanic Gods; name all of Frigga’s 12 handmaidens (we got 10 out of twelve, not bad for two people who don’t work much with Her); and finally bust out both Eddas and secondary source material to fill in anybody we missed (eight books in total). Tell and explain some myths and explanations of various Gods to the relative newbie in the room (who was working on some herbal magic stuff), and wax philosophical about Heathenry and old Norse culture as a whole. Rinse and repeat.

All in all, a quiet but very satisfying belated Beltane well celebrated, as only Heathens would do it 🙂

Love notes from Freya, 3/20/15

Now is the time for all good things to have sex. Be as the bee and the flower, and get it on! Love, Freya.

And, also, an undercurrent of LOVELOVELOVE. As underlies most everything I get from Her.

Not a bad deal, sometimes. 🙂

(I know I’m not the only flower you see/but what can I do, you are a good looking bee….)

Oh, and also–Happy Ostara!

“Lo! There do I see my father…”

You know you’re a Heathen if, when I say, “Remember that great scene from The 13th Warrior? You know, “Lo! There do I….”, you can finish the entire quote automatically 🙂 For you, I give you this. Happy belated Winternights.

Lo, there do I see my father
Lo, there do I see my mother
and my sisters and my brothers
Lo, there do I see the line of my people
back to the beginning.
Lo, they do call to me
They bid me take my place among them.
In the halls of Valhalla,
where the brave shall live forever.

(No, it’s not historically accurate, but it’s perfect.)