Tuesday, June 5, 2007
Well Dressings (Europe)
Themes: Blessings; Prayer; Beauty; Fairy; Wishes
Symbols: Flowers; Water
About Cordelia: A British nature Goddess, Cordelia is part of every spring and summer flower that blossoms. This is the beauty she brings into our lives today, along with all the positive energies of spring. Traditionally, Cordelia does not appear until May, when the earth is fertile enough to sustain her glory. Art sometimes depicts her as being a citizen of fairy realms, and perhaps a flower princess.
To Do Today: Well-dressing festivals go back to animistic times, when people believed sacred wells held beneficent indwelling spirits. To appease these powers, people decked the well with Cordelia's symbols: garlands of spring flowers. They then asked for the gods' goddess', or spirits' favor. So, if you have any type of fountain or well nearby, today is a day for wishing! Take a small offering (coins if a fountain; a flower if a natural water source) and toss it in while whispering your desire to Cordelia.
To draw the attention of Cordelia and her companions, the fey, into your life, take a dollhouse chair and glue any or all of the following items to it: thyme, straw, primrose, oak leaves, ash leaves, and hawthorn berries or leaves. Leave this on a sunny windowsill (preferably one with a plant on it) to encourage fairy guests, who will bring all manner of spring frolic into your home.
By Patricia Telesco ~ From "365 Goddess" and GrannyMoon's Morning Feast
Thursday, May 24, 2007
In September 1960, I woke up one morning with six hungry babies and just 75 cents in my pocket. Their father was gone. The boys ranged from three months to seven years; their sister was two. Their Dad had never been much more than a presence they feared.
Whenever they heard his tires crunch on the gravel driveway they would scramble to hide under their beds. He did manage to leave $15 a week to buy groceries.
Now that he had decided to leave, there would be no more beatings, but no food either.
If there was a welfare system in effect in southern Indiana at that time, I certainly knew nothing about it. I scrubbed the kids until they looked brand new and then put on my best homemade dress, loaded them into the rusty old 51 Chevy and drove off to find a job.
The seven of us went to every factory, store and restaurant in our small town. No luck.
The kids stayed crammed into the car and tried to be quiet while I tried to convince whomever would listen that I was willing to learn or do anything. I had to have a job.
Still no luck. The last place we went to, just a few miles out of town, was an old Root Beer Barrel drive-in that had been converted to a truck stop. It was called the Big Wheel.
An old lady named Granny owned the place and she peeked out of the window from time to time at all those kids. She needed someone on the graveyard shift, 11 at night until seven in the morning. She paid 65 cents an hour, and I could start that night. I raced home and called the teenager down the street that baby-sat for people. I bargained with her to come and sleep on my sofa for a dollar a night. She could arrive with her pajamas on and the kids would already be asleep. This seemed like a good arrangement to her, so we made a deal.
That night when the little ones and I knelt to say our prayers, we all thanked God for finding Mommy a job. And so I started at the Big Wheel.
When I got home in the mornings I woke the baby-sitter up and sent her home with one dollar of my tip money--fully half of what I averaged every night. As the weeks went by, heating bills added a strain to my meager wage.
The tires on the old Chevy had the consistency of penny balloons and began to leak. I had to fill them with air on the way to work and again every morning before I could go home.
One bleak fall morning, I dragged myself to the car to go home and found four tires in the back seat. New tires! There was no note, no nothing, just those beautiful brand new tires. Had angels taken up residence in Indiana ? I wondered.
I made a deal with the local service station. In exchange for his mounting the new tires, I would clean up his office. I remember it took me a lot longer to scrub his floor than it did for him to do the tires.
I was now working six nights instead of five and it still wasn't enough. Christmas was coming and I knew there would be no money for toys for the kids.
I found a can of red paint and started repairing and painting some old toys. Then hid them in the basement so there would be something for Santa to deliver on Christmas morning. Clothes were a worry too. I was sewing patches on top of patches on the boys pants and soon they would be too far gone to repair.
On Christmas Eve the usual customers were drinking coffee in the Big Wheel. These were the truckers, Les, Frank, and Jim, and a state trooper named Joe.
A few musicians were hanging around after a gig at the Legion and were dropping nickels in the pinball machine. The regulars all just sat around and talked through the wee hours of the morning and then left to get home before the sun came up.
When it was time for me to go home at seven o'clock on Christmas morning, to my amazement, my old battered Chevy was filled full to the top with boxes of all shapes and sizes. I quickly opened the driver's side door, crawled inside and kneeled in the front facing the back seat.
Reaching back, I pulled off the lid of the top box. Inside was whole case of little blue jeans, sizes 2-10! I looked inside another box: It was full of shirts to go with the jeans. Then I peeked inside some of the other boxes. There was candy and nuts and bananas and bags of groceries. There was an enormous ham for baking, and canned vegetables and potatoes. There was pudding and Jell-O and cookies, pie filling and flour. There was a whole bag of laundry supplies and cleaning items. And there were five toy trucks and one beautiful little doll.
As I drove back through empty streets as the sun slowly rose on the most amazing Christmas Day of my life, I was sobbing with gratitude. And I will never forget the joy on the faces of my little ones that precious morning.
Yes, there were angels in Indiana that long-ago December. And they all hung out at the Big Wheel truck stop....
Goddess of The Day: Bellona
Themes: Protection; Victory; Communication; Strength
Symbols: Swords or (Athame); Spear
About Bellona: She who kindles the fire of the sun and the fire in the bellies of warriors, Bellona is both a mother and a battle goddess, being the female equivalent of Mars with a distinct diplomatic twist. Those who call upon Bellona receive strategy, tactfulness, and a keen sense of how to handle explosive situations effectively.
To Do Today: Romans spent today ritually cleansing their trumpets for battle and honoring the people who make the trumpets. In this part of the world, a horn not only signaled a charge but invoked the goddess's attention. So, for what personal battle(s) do you need to sound Bellona's horn today? Find a horn with which to do just that (perhaps a kazoo or a piece of construction paper rolled to look like a megaphone). Shout your battle plans to Bellona so she can respond with all her resources to help you.
If you use a sword, athame (sacred knife), or wand in magic, today is an excellent time to take out that tool and invoke Bellona's blessing upon it. Oil and sharpen the blade, polish the wand, then hold it in your hand as if it were a weapon, saying,
Bellona, see this implement of magic, which, as any,
has two edges--for boon and bane. May only goodness
flow through this tool, and may I ever remain
aware of the responsibility for its use. So be it.
By Patricia Telesco ~ From "365 Goddess" and GrannyMoon's Morning Feast
Women have strengths that amaze men.
They bear hardships and they carry burdens,
but they hold happiness, love and joy.
They smile when they want to scream.
They sing when they want to cry.
They cry when they are happy
and laugh when they are nervous.
They fight for what they believe in.
They stand up to injustice.
They don't take "no" for an answer
when they believe there is a better solution.
They go without so their family can have.
They go to the doctor with a frightened friend.
They love unconditionally.
They cry when their children excel
and cheer when their friends get awards.
They are happy when they hear about
a birth or a wedding.
Their hearts break when a friend dies.
They grieve at the loss of a family member,
yet they are strong when they
think there is no strength left.
They know that a hug and a kiss
can heal a broken heart.
Women come in all shapes, sizes and colors.
They'll drive, fly, walk, run or e-mail you
to show how much they care about you.
The heart of a woman is what makes the world keep turning.
They bring joy, hope and love.
They have the compassion and ideas.
They give moral support to their
family and friends.
Women have vital things to say
and everything to give.
HOWEVER, IF THERE IS ONE FLAW IN WOMEN,
IT IS THAT THEY FORGET THEIR WORTH.
-v- Author Unknown -v-
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Moving thru the terminal was a group of soldiers in their camos. As they began heading to their gate, everyone (well almost everyone) was abruptly to their feet with their hands waving and cheering. When I saw the soldiers, probably 30-40 of them, being applauded and cheered for, it hit me. I'm not alone. I'm not the only red-blooded American who still loves this country and supports our troops and their families.
Of course I immediately stopped and began clapping for these young unsung heroes who are putting their lives on the line everyday for us so we can go to school, work and home without fear or reprisal.
Just when I thought I could not be more proud of my country or of our service men and women, a young girl, not more than 6 or 7 years old, ran up to one of the male soldiers. He kneeled down and said 'hi.' The little girl then asked him if he would give something to her daddy for her. The young soldier, who didn't look any older than maybe 22 himself, said he would try and what did she want to give to her daddy. Then suddenly the little girl grabbed the neck of this soldier, gave him the biggest hug she could muster and then kissed him on the cheek.
The mother of the little girl, who said her daughter's name was Courtney, told the young soldier that her husband was a Marine and had been in Iraq for 11 months now. As the mom was explaining how much her daughter Courtney missed her father, the young soldier began to tear up. When this temporarily single mom was done explaining her situation, all of the soldiers huddled together for a brief second. Then one of the other servicemen pulled out a military-looking walkie-talkie. They started playing with the device and talking back and forth on it. After about 10-15 seconds of this, the young soldier walked back over to Courtney, bent down and said this to her, 'I spoke to your daddy, and he told me to give this to you¢. He then hugged this little girl that he had just met and gave her a kiss on the cheek. He finished by saying 'your daddy told me to tell you that he loves you more than anything and he is coming home very soon.'
The mom at this point was crying almost uncontrollably and as the young soldier stood to his feet, he saluted Courtney and her mom. I was standing no more than 6 feet away from this entire event. As the soldiers began to leave, heading towards their gate, people resumed their applause. As I stood there applauding and looked around, there were very few dry eyes, including my own. That young soldier, in one last act of selflessness, turned around and blew a kiss to Courtney with a tear rolling down his cheek.
We need to remember everyday all of our soldiers and their families and thank God for them and their sacrifices. At the end of the day, it's good to be an American.
RED FRIDAYS ----- Very soon, you will see a great many people wearing Red every Friday. The reason? Americans who support our troops used to be called the 'silent majority'. We are no longer silent, and are voicing our love for God, country and home in record breaking numbers. We are not organized, boisterous or over-bearing. We get no liberal media coverage on TV, to reflect our message or our opinions. Many Americans, like you, me and all our friends, simply want to recognize that the vast majority of America supports our troops.
Our idea of showing solidarity and support for our troops with dignity and respect starts this Friday and continues each and every Friday until the troops all come home, sending a deafening message that.. Every red-blooded American who supports our men and women afar will wear something red. By word of mouth, press, TV -- let's make the United States on every Friday a sea of red much like a homecoming football game in the bleachers. If every one of us who loves this country will share this with acquaintances, co-workers, friends, and family. It will not be long before the USA is covered in RED and it will let our troops know the once 'silent' majority is on their side more than ever; certainly more than the media lets on.
The first thing a soldier says when asked 'What can we do to make things better for you?' is...We need your support and your prayers.
Let's get the word out and lead with class and dignity, by example; and wear something red every Friday.
Isn't it strange how 3 hours seem so long when you're at church and how short they seem when you're at a party?
Isn't it strange that you can't find a word to say when you're praying but you have no trouble thinking what to talk about with a friend?
Isn't it strange how difficult and boring it is to read one chapter of the Bible but how easy it is to read a 2 page letter from your friend, or BF/GF
Isn't it strange how everyone wants front-row-tickets to concerts or games but they do whatever is possible to sit in the last row in Church?
Isn't it strange how we need to know about an event for Church 2-3 weeks before the day so we can include it in our agenda but we can adjust it for other events in the last minute?
Isn't it strange how difficult it is to learn a fact about God to share it with others but how easy it is to learn, understand, extend and repeat gossip?
Isn't it strange how we believe everything that magazines and newspapers say but we question the words in the Bible?
Isn't it strange how everyone wants a place in heaven but they don't want to believe, do, or say anything to get there?
Isn't it strange how we send jokes in e-mails and they are forwarded right away but when it comes to sending messages about God we think about it twice before we share it with others?
IT'S STRANGE ISN'T IT?