Sunday, September 16, 2012

Summer Sunday

A spider spinning its web on some Queen Anne's Lace that's going to seed.

This coming Saturday is the autumn equinox, after this week summer will be over. Little decorative gourds and pumpkins are starting to appear in the stores, it's time to pick up a few to decorate the hearth shrine, along with bringing out the old dried corn and other decorations from the storage closet. Apples from local orchards are also showing up in the stores, along with fresh cider. Nothing beats hot spiced cider on a cold autumn night. Well, unless you've got some fresh pumpkin fritters to go along with that...

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

First Signs of Autumn

Monday was the first day that I could really feel the coming autumn season. Well, there was a day about two weeks ago where there was just a little hint of something... but Monday was cool, windy, and I noticed that some of the trees are just starting to change.You could really feel the seasons starting to shift that day. Last night was the first night since summer started that I've actually been cold in bed with just a sheet, I had to get up to dig a blanket out of the closet. Very early this morning, 4am, my dog woke me up to go outside as he usually does around that time. There was a beautiful sliver of waning moon sitting in the east (along with Venus, and Jupiter higher up), and I noticed I could see my breath in the air.

I have no doubt that we'll see a few more warm days before summer is truly through - the weather predicts a few days in the 80s coming up. Still, it's clear that it's time to start getting ready for the colder months. Not time to break out the snow gear just yet, but time to put away some of the lighter summer clothes, and bring the long sleeves and sweaters from the back of the closet. Time to take out our little window air conditioner and put it away until next summer. Time to give the heaters a good cleaning, and make sure they're all in good working condition before the cold really sets in. Soon we'll be giving the house a deep clean, before it gets to cold to keep the windows open for long, putting away some things, getting rid of others that may no longer be needed... there's plenty to do between now and when November rolls around.

And it's not all physical cleaning and preparation. During fall and winter we tend to move inward a bit more, and not just into the home, but into ourselves as well. It's a good time to start deep cleaning our lives in a less literal sense, as well. Examining personal habits, relationships, our spirituality, looking at the harvest we've brought in, looking back and seeing what's been good for us, and what should be culled during this time. What should we keep, and what should we leave behind, before we move back into the seasons of growth again.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Friday, September 7, 2012

Prompt: The Broom Closet

When I first started studying paganism I was pretty young, and the idea that this would be something I would have to hide from anyone just didn't occur to me. I told my family I was studying this, and it was never a big deal. I told my friends, and well, while they didn't seem to care much... someone eventually told someone else, who told someone else, and we know how that goes. Some people made fun of me - very few others were learning about paganism, or had family members that were pagan. Eventually people forgot, stopped caring, and when on to the next thing.

So because of that, I've never really hidden my faith - it's just been out there, like it or not, for a long time. My family knows. My friends know. It's caused a few issues over the years (some big, some small), but for the most part its been fine.

Even so, religion just isn't something I talk about much (offline, anyway). I'm a pretty private person in general, and the details of my practice just don't come out much - partly because most people just don't ask. I'll usually be direct if asked (unless it's at work!), although depending on who is asking I might not be very detailed... I usually won't say I'm a hedgewitch, or give details, unless it's someone I know very well. "I'm a pagan" is usually enough for most people, and thankfully I live in an area where I don't really have to fear being somewhat open about my beliefs.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Summer Sunday

The days are mostly still warm, there are still flowers in bloom, leaves are green on the trees, and evening insects are still singing... yet, the end of summer is in the air. Evenings and nights are cooler, even days are becoming cooler. The sun is setting noticeably sooner each night. The sun was down before 7:30 today - when did that happen? Wasn't the sun still in the sky at 8:00 not too long ago?

I love autumn and winter, but it's always a little sad to see summer leaving. Tonight I'm working on some desserts for tomorrow's Labor Day cookout, the last get-together of the summer (and the last big gathering of family and friends until Thanksgiving in November). Soon enough it will be time to start planning trips to the apple orchards...