Monday, April 26, 2010

Musical Monday

One of those songs that just makes a bad day better, especially if sung while making Midnight Margaritas!!

Re-decorating Therapy

It seems that, this spring, my life plan has hit a snag.  I had been expecting to get my permanent contract this year - no luck and I had hoped to be shopping for a house by now.  Due to the lack of contract and because Fiance and I are committed to paying off his sizable amount of debt - we have decided to put off buying a house for 6 months to a year.  This has led me to being more than a little snarky and depressed.  I realize that I am being this way and that I am taking it out on Fiance because, since a large reason behind the delay is his debt, I am blaming him and starting to feel resentful.  As I said, I realize that I am being unfair even while making yet another biting comment but I can't seem to stop.  Has anyone else ever found themselves acting one way, despite knowing exactly why you are behaving this way and that it is wrong? 

In order to combat this tendency, and to make myself a little happier around my apartment, I have decided to re-decorate.  There have been a number of things that I have been putting off with thoughts of "I will do that when we get a house".  So I have decided to take care of all of those things, such as, replacing the scratched kitchen table and the "beat to a snot" bedroom set (I'm talking missing drawers resulting in gaping holes!), buying a painting for the rather large and rather empty living room wall and moving the constantly messy (and cheaply built) computer desk into the guest room.  I realize that most of this will take some of the money that I had tucked away for a downpayment but I really feel that it will allow me to be happier in the space that we have now, instead of constantly thinking about where I would rather be.  Any ideas on cheap ways to improve apartment living?

Saturday, April 24, 2010

What's In A Name?

I've been thinking for a while about the name I use here and on Twitter.  I worry sometimes that PhoenixWitch is slightly odd and may conjure images of a teenage girl, reading Ravenwolf and scrawling different craft names all over her math notebook, each one consisting of some inane combination or magical sounding words.  I despise the fact that the word Phoenix has become so entrenched in Pagan (and not so pagan) culture as to have lost all meaning.  You will, in fact, find me on Mysticwicks, a community of 22,535, under the name Phoenix - that's right, the original Phoenix, not Phoenix165 or PhoenixInsertRandomAdditiveHere.  I chose the name because of an experience I had while very young.  On my 5th birthday my house caught fire.  I had been playing with a neighbor across the street but came home early and went to my room.  My mother was decorating downstairs and did not know that I was even home.  She came upstairs, saw the fire (which had originated from something on the stove) grabbed my little brother and got out.  Once she was outside she looked up and saw the image of my grandfather, recently deceased, standing in the window, beckoning her to come back.   It was at this moment that she realized I was inside.  Firefighters came and got me, and I have this intense memory of not wanting to leave.  When we were finally allowed back inside, the majority of the house was gutted.  Strangely, my room was the only one in the house that looked pristine, despite the fact that the rooms surrounding it were ruined.  There was no indication that there had even been a fire, not even so much as smoke marks on the door.  This was my first encounter with the supernatural world and my first indication that there are actually forces working within our lives that we are unable to comprehend.  And so, having literally risen from the flames with the aid of something stronger than myself, I chose the name Phoenix to represent this part of my life.  I've considered many times about changing it, even spent hours contemplating new names, but nothing else seems to fit.  I guess I am stuck with Phoenix and it is stuck with me.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Recent Stone Purchases

I am determined that these stones are the last ones purchased .... at least until April is over!  A friend tempted me with talk of reasonably priced spirit quartz and, once in the store, I couldn't leave without a few more treasures.

First the Spirit Quartz

Then a stunning piece of Zincite caught my eye ...

And finally, I spied a piece of Kunzite. Which I convinced myself was reasonable because the only piece of kunzite that I have is about the size of my pinky fingernail and I'm afraid to take it out of the house because I might lose it.

So now I am really on a budget for the rest of the month .... but holding each new stone makes it feel worth it!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Stone of the Week: Zincite

On a recent trip to my favorite shop Little Mysteries (yes, again - I was tempted by tales of spirit quartz) I picked up a stunning piece of yellow zincite and, of course, am now motivated to learn more about it.

Zincite comes in a variety of colors including red, yellow and green. Zincite removes blockages and promotes creative thinking.  The overwhelming feeling that I get from my stone is one of joy.  It also brings fun and new ideas, something I'm sure we all can use from time to time.  The yellow variety is particularly good at overcoming inadequacy and instills courage and confidence while boosting personal power.  Zincite is also said to be useful in overcoming phobias and in coming to terms with changes such as menopause or empty-nest syndrome.  It promotes friendships and brings together like-minded people.

Physically, Zincite is well known for re-energizing both body and spirit.  It has been used to treat blockages within the body such as mucus conditions.  Because it boosts the immune system, Zincite is effective in the treatment of auto-immune diseases and AIDS.  It may also help prevent epileptic seizures and aid in fertility.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Shopping Trip Goodies

Every year, on their anniversary, my favorite local pagan store, Little Mysteries, has a fantastic sale.  This year, they offered 20% off everything in the store.  I thought I would share some of my new found goodies. 

First, I needed to replenish my herb cabinet with some supplies that I have used in various magickal endeavors over the past few months. 

I usually end up coming home with at least a handful of stones but this time only two caught my eye.  A lapis lazuli and a beautiful blue goldstone.  The goldstone looks almost purple and has an unbelievable sparkle when you turn it in the light. 

I weeded out a few purchases in order to be able to afford the following two pieces.  First, a Tiger's Eye Pendant.  I have been searching for just the right Tiger's Eye for years now and I really felt that if I left the store without this piece, I would regret it later.

And finally, this absolutely STUNNING Labradorite Bookends.  They were actually a recommendation from a good friend who works at the store.  The first day of the sale was Saturday, which just happened to be the day I had scheduled an all-day rehearsal for the school musical (I direct).  SO, my wonderful fiance offered brave the crowds and go for me and came back with these hunks of gorgeousness.

I spent about twice what I had intended this year.  But scrimping and saving over the next month to make up for it will be well worth it every time I look at these stones. 

Monday, April 5, 2010

Light at the End of the Tunnel

With the coming of the Easter weekend I am, quite literally, leaving the cold of winter behind and entering the beauty of spring.  In teaching, January thru March is an incredibly difficult time of year.  As with everyone, we have to deal with getting up in the dark, being stuck inside a poorly lit, concrete building all day and then emerging in the dark.  The kids are cranky and more disruptive and we have less patience to deal with it.  There are no holidays here after the Christmas break and before the March break.  This time of year often feels like a marathon where we are just striving to reach the finish line without falling flat on our faces.  I did get to have a lovely March break, my mother came to visit and then my fiance returned from Haiti amid much fanfare.  However, once I returned to school I had to settle in for the two week ordeal that is report card season.  I finished those on Thursday but, because of the system that this school uses, I expect I will spend the next week and a half changing things until I am ready to vomit at the thought of opening that program one more time! 

Now comes the home stretch for the year.  This is also theatre season and, since I direct the school's musical, things will not be any less busy between now and June.  But, it is my intention to make more of an effort to reconnect with the spiritual side of life as well as with the friends that I have neglected during these dark and dreary months.  It is time to open the door and let in the light.