“New Years Day”

How are you spending the day after Halloween/Samhain my dear Pagani?

Here’s some of how I spent mine…

I light the Ocean Breeze Spa Candle that sits on the bathroom counter. (Why yes, as a cavalier, why do you ask?!)

I light the candle, I turn out the lights and run as-hot-as-I-can-take-it water into the bathtub.  I position myself into the typical modern apartment  shoe-box of a bath tub as it fills.  I add some soap, and I do my best to soak.  The steam caresses my lungs with each breath as much as the heat relaxes my flesh.   I begin to really breath, deep conscious breaths.

In through the nose and out through the mouth.  In and out, deep conscious breaths trying to be as present in the moment and paying attention to the sound and sensations of this life drinking and energy raising breathing.  After a few moments I begin to breath the energy and air into my center, somewhere below my stomach and above my pelvis it sits, long neglected.  This new way of finding it combined with the deep breathing, long familiar to me for raising energy and getting in touch with my own energies, triggers an energetic sense memory…

After a while I find myself moving my breaths and energies destination to my Root Chakra.  Even though I have begun working with grounding exorcises and with my Chakra’s again, I am still very rusty.  I take a good long time breathing into my Root Chakra, resisting the temptation to move up through my chakra’s quickly… unlike so many times before I am not doing this as part of some other work, or for grounding centering and shielding… I am breathing life and energy and air into my Center and my energy centers to relax my spirit as I have relaxed my body.

In through the nose and out through the mouth, with great “Shhh-ing exhales” as I breath the energy into my Root Chakra, after a few moments I find myself not only drawing energy through my breath; but I find myself calling to the Earth energy and to the Creative Firey and Feri currents from the Earths Core, drawing them up into the red wheel/lotus at my perineum.    Slowly, I feel like I have properly opened and relaxed this Chakra and I move up to the Sacral Chakra… I find myself wondering about the relationship between the Center point and this Chakra, seeming from my own sensations and from what I have learned so far to be so close together.  Are they the same or simply very close?  Very close I think/feel.  I breathe, once more resisting the temptation to simply run up this string of Spinning Lights within me, I take my time.

I take my time with each of them.  I empty the tub and go to my computer to listen to the Samhain podcasts, read the posts, and to think about how it is that I find some pieces of my soul blossoming.  Samhain has, for me, always marked an inward turning time, coupled with the blossoming cooling to temperate temperatures of a Florida Autumn as we move toward the many fruit harvests of Winter here in the Sunshine State, I suppose it’s only natural that one who seeks to align with Natures rhythms would start to bloom once more this time of year.



In praise of Halloween’s mixed bag of treats…

picture of a party noise-maker from the Sexy Witch Website (see bellow)

This post is about Halloween as opposed to Samhain, but as they are more than a little intertwined temporally, thematically and in my own mind and emotions; as well as in the popular and Pagan cultures… I am not all that worried about it.

As a Witch, I have some very mixed feelings about Halloween…

On the one hand it delights and amuses me that Halloween is becoming such a widely decorated and celebrated holiday (at least in the U.S.).  I delight in my memories of Halloween’s of my childhood.  The costumes and the trick-or-treating.  The delicious agony of waiting till sun-down to go trick or treating.  The excitement and fun of a school Halloween Carnival, the cheesy games, the cake-walk, the haunted house and the costume contests and the home-made food booths.

I’d like to digress for a moment, as I often do, to mention a fading tradition of the U.S. Halloween experience, the Halloween Parades at school where classes would take turns parading through classes in their costumes!  I used to love those, in the few school years where I was going to schools that still did them they were a big, big deal.  Sometimes you’d have one costume for the School Parade and a whole other one for your actual trick-or-treating.  Good times, good times. (sigh)

Another long-lost part of Halloween that I can just remember is getting home-made treats in your trick-or-treating.  Paranoia, some of it sadly justified, of malicious trick-or-treat tampering has killed this fondly remembered tradition from Halloween’s long ago.

Now, back to our post, and the dreaded other hand…

I despair of the fact that the all-out-gross-out has become such a bloody and gory part of Halloween.  Now I realize that a certain blood-‘n-gutsy-ness has always been a part of Halloween.  It is an undeniable part of it’s ghoulish charm.   I am not sure of this blood soaked gore is, in part, a reaction to the anti-Halloween movement of the 1970’s and 80’s; or how it relates to the increasing fascination with blood and gore shock-em Horror films of the same period.  I just know that this trend depresses me.  It just seems to me that gore and gross has really began to overwhelm the spooky and fun charm of the Holiday.

There has always been a sense of the limenal-time to Halloween as social and personal barriers are lowered or transformed and folks let their (sometimes rather naughty) inner-child out to play dress up at costume parties.  There is also a sense of wonder as we accept the uncanny, if even briefly, into our lives with ghost-stories and fortunetelling and masquerade’s.  This time between times when, in beliefs ancient and modern, the walls between the worlds were thin and spirits walk amongst us has always held a sense of power and wonder and mystery for me.  Even as archeology begins to let go of the idea that the ancient Celts celebrated the new year at Samhain, it will remain a spiritual New Years, because it is a turning point.  A treasured night-time journey between the worlds of the mundane and the fantastic.

Is this, truly, a more jaded age that we require more visceral thrills to throw us into Halloween’s liminal state?  Or do you agree with me that Halloween can regain it’s Spooktacular aura once more?

I’ve been longing for some old-fashioned spooky fun in the last week or so.  Perhaps I’ll go bobbing for apples or carve a Jack O’lantern.  In the meantime I’ll be browsing through a few of my Favorite Halloween links and contemplating a fabulous old-fashioned Halloween.

If any of you can suggest further links, especially to old-fashioned Halloween costumes and decor, please post a comment and share!




Old-Fashioned, or just plain geek-tacular Halloween links…

The Vintage Halloween Website ~ This wonderful website is full of vintage collectibles and party suggestions, it is related to a Vintage Halloween Store website, and sadly lacks a lot of the how-to info I crave for my own edification and enjoyment, but this site is a useful ideas resource if your a bit arts & crafty minded!

Dragonfly Design Studio ~ This online store presents a wide number of antiques and reproductions that could help supply an old fashioned Halloween part, and provide some cool ideas.

Spookshows.com ~ Is one man’s website of resources and links for the Halloween lover.  If has information, and links and some great images!

Halloween Lantern’s ~ This is a sales website where a crafter sellser her original and reproduction Halloween Lantern’s and light screens.  Some great images, items and links…

The Monster Page of Halloween Project Links ~ Is a comprehensive do-it-yourself list of Halloween related projects, most of them are more Haunted House (or front yard) than old-fashioned, but it appealse to much to my inner geek not to include!

Allen’s Halloween Page ~ One mans chronicles of his own Haunted fron yard projects for Halloween.  Included instructions and links to a variety of resources.  Again, my inner geek was drooling…

Sexy Witch ~ A (NSFW) blog whose author Red Witch seeks out images of sexy witches for her own edification and as an antidote to the vile hag them common in many depictions.  The party noise-maker image at the top of this post was culled from this site.

Thrill The World ~ An annual event that seeks to get increasing numbers of folks to do the dance from the Thriller video by Michael Jackson.  They set a new world record in 2007 in Toronto.  (this link gets bonus points for not only being Halloween fun & weirdness, but 80’s fun and weirdness, ah the surreal days of my youth…..)

Ok more extra early Halloween posting…

So I was on my way to a community Mabon event and I stopped in the store to buy some sort of potluck contribution because I was entirely unsure about going until the last minute. I was fine until I got to the Seasonal Aisle at the Dollar General Grocery… they had the Halloween decorations out….



Luckilly I am freakishly poor this month… or I would have probably gotten in some trouble with my Partner. Try as I might I have yet to convince him that the little purple and orange lights, scarecrows, fake spider webs, and one or two dozen actual or symbolic pumpkins and jack-o-lanterns are a necessity! As it was I had to chase my inner child around the store for a good 10-15 minutes… Finally caught the little bugger in the Home Furnishings section and had club him into submission and get to the event.




Its SUCH a good thing I don’t work at a Fabric or Crafts store anymore! (Heck, I STILL have fabric from Fabricland in the early 1990’s…

I tend to like my Halloween decor light-hearted and spooky with just a few pinches to a dash of the macabre. Pumpkins, scarecrows, bedsheet ghosts, maybe a skelleton or two… none of the blood and guts stuff that is popular in some quarters.

I will be adding and editing this post as the Holidays approach… WATCH THIS SPACE!!