Saturday, October 30, 2010

What's your rainbow?

Your rainbow is strongly shaded red and green.
What it says about you: 

You are an intelligent person.
You appreciate energetic people.
Those around you admire your fresh outlook and vitality.
You get bored easily and want friends who will keep up with you.

Find the colors of your rainbow at spacefem.com

Well... not quite. I don't think I get bored easily, and I don't think anyone would have difficulties in keeping up with me, but... I like people with ADHD :-D

Friday, October 29, 2010

Worldviews arbitrarily named "religious"?

I made this "band" myself after 7Gypsies' Christmas scrapbook paper, on which different Christmassy words were printed - I suppose it was the dictionary definition of the words. I wrote on it some of the words I associate with Samhain:
- Joy, Mirth, Fun, Frolic, Merriment, Glee, Cheer
- Mischief, Prank, Trick, Surprise, Thrill
- Treat, Sweet, Candy, Pleasure, Feast, Feat, Party, Dainty
- Lantern, Light, Glow, Candle, Fire, Lamp, Torch, Beam, Flare, Shine
- Warmth, Hospitality, Kindness, Friendliness
- Courage, Protection, Ward
- Veil, Curtain, Guise, Mask, Screen, Shade, Shroud, Dim, Spirit, Soul, Disguise, Drape, Mantle, Wrap
- Tradition, Heritage, Legend, Lore, Myth, Tale, Story

You might associate other words to Samhain, like ghosts, pumpkins and divination.


-----------------------------------------------

"I personally feel that there is a double standard when separation of Church and State is examined in the school system. Worldviews that are arbitrarily named "religious" are not allowed in the school system, yet kids can hear advocacy for every other worldview, like empiricism, rationalism, skepticism, materialism, monism, secular humanism. Just who is to say that truth cannot be found in, or even may be limited to one of the religious worldviews?"
- A Christian man about not teaching religion in school

Empiricism is a theory of knowledge that asserts that knowledge arises from sense experience.
Rationalism is a method or a theory "in which the criterion of the truth is not sensory but intellectual and deductive"
Skepticism is an approach to accepting, rejecting, or suspending judgment on new information that requires the new information to be well supported by argument or evidence.
Materialism is a theory which holds that the only thing that exists is matter; that all things are composed of material and all phenomena (including consciousness) are the result of material interactions.
Monism is any philosophical view which holds that there is unity in a given field of inquiry.
Secular humanism is a humanist philosophy that espouses reason, ethics, and justice, and specifically rejects supernatural and religious dogma as the basis of morality and decision-making.

None of these was taught to me at school.

None of these is a religion, "a specific fundamental set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, esp. when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs, generally agreed upon by a number of persons or sects", and the US Supreme Court has interpreted religion to mean "a sincere and meaningful belief that occupies in the life of its possessor a place parallel to the place held by God in the lives of other persons".
There is nothing arbitrary in the definition of what is religious.

You teach your spiritual beliefs to your children as much as you like at home, JUST AS EVERY OTHER PERSON IN THE WORLD IS SUPPOSED TO BE DOING, and allow the community to function according to the freedom of religion - meaning that ANY religious belief - even yours - is not to govern the whole society, that every pupil in school must be able to receive the information without having their beliefs violated. Biology doesn't violate anyone's beliefs. No-one demands that you BELIEVE in the "theory of evolution", only that you KNOW it.

"Just who is to say that truth cannot be found in, or even may be limited to one of the religious worldviews." That is not the question here... the question is: just who is to say that YOUR truth is THE truth, and mine is not? God? You mean YOUR God? >;->

Thursday, October 28, 2010

"we need to be concerned about human interference"?

"no one is here at our request, but at the creators request, and they are provided for by him. we need to trust the process of creation that god has set into place for us, to be complete.
human interference in that process is the only one that we need to be concerned about. we can reduce our interference most definitely.
reducing other peoples interference is a more difficult problem.
it is a matter of balance, not absolutes. guidelines, not laws or rules."


I don't agree with this person.
I don't think God could possibly have put over 6 billion people on this little blue planet so that we could try to avoid "interfering" with each other :-D
Of course I could be staring at my own navel and vibrate to a different level of existence, and it would be very peaceful, harmonic, serene and I would not get into trouble with others... unless the day they decide that they want the spot I'm sitting on, or that I'm doing "it" wrong >:->

Then - I happen to believe we NEED laws and rules, because people just ignore "guidelines", interpret them as they like and claim to be following them.

Just look at Christians. Now, Christianity is the biggest, single religion.
One could think that the guidelines, that is, the Greek Scriptures, would be enough... but are they?
Do you think that an Indian Catholic person is following the guidelines the same way as a Usonian Evangelical? Or Scandinavian Lutheran, or Kenyan Protestant? In fact, if you ask the Usonian Evangelical, he will tell you that the others aren't even Christian. :->

No. Take a simple law, "thou shalt not kill", and people understand that killing others might be a bad idea. They might discuss what exactly was meant with "kill", if it means "murder", if abortion can be included, or death penalty, or euthanasia. Are animals included, etc. but they understand, that killers are not good people.
The law itself is much easier to follow than the guideline "But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment." Eh?
"shall be in DANGER of judgment? You mean, it's not certain? That some times it's ok to be angry with your "brother" and call them names, and one might get away with it? Besides... I'm not angry, precisely... I'm just a bit annoyed by him, because he thinks he's all that and harasses others with his "rules" and "laws"
*facepalm*

So - this is his opinion, and I cordially disagree.

Today's scrapbook page looks like this:
how to tie the two colored knot

nice sites about Scrapbooking:

I have been inspired when doing the scrapbook layouts (more or less) by
scrapbooking.about.com
http://stamping.thefuntimesguide.com
http://www.monthly-memories.com
http://leighpennerresume.blogspot.com
http://dchurchfamily.blogspot.com/
http://www.sarahiscrafty.com/
http://fromthewindow.com/
http://quilterphotography.blogspot.com/
http://makingmemories.typepad.com/
http://www.cranberrycat.com/
http://jensmessystudio.blogspot.com
http://picsicio.us/keyword/travel scrapbook layouts/
http://scrapbooking.com/
http://www.erinbassett.com/
http://www.scrapbookmax.com/
http://dchurchfamily.blogspot.com/
http://www.artstampsdirect.com/
http://anitameade.typepad.com
http://www.scrapsofmind.com/
http://www.cathyrogaladesigns.com/
http://scissorlessmedia.com/
http://scrapbookinwithg.blogspot.com/
http://www.memorymakersmagazine.com/
http://www.scrapbooksetc.com/
http://creativecucina.com/
http://scrapgirls.com.ipbhost.com/
and many, many more...

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Only five days left...

This one is very simple, but I like it :-)
I used the colors from the background paper. The photo is mounted on two papers, first one orange that is dabbled with different shades of orange, on that sits a dark purple paper. The tops of the tags are colored too, one with orange, the other with yellow, both taken from the background. They are fastened under the photo with ribbons, rusty brown and purple, both colors from the background.

-----

The Witch in the Tea Closet said something about Tea Time Tuesdays... I am very fond of the English tea ceremony :-D I think I have mentioned it earlier.

I don't have flu, thank Goddess for that. I have something else. Ache all over my body. My husband looked at me over the breakfast table and said that I look really sick :-D He's a charmer, he :-D (I know, I know, it was for sympathy, he tried to get me go to bed. Nevertheless...)

I am tired and I need to fetch my niece from the Finland ferry tomorrow morning. I like my niece very much, but I wish I didn't need to get up and going so early in the morning. (8 A.M. I know, I know, a lot of you are out the door already 1 and 2 hours before that, and my sisters have probably left for work, all of them, even earlier, but I don't have work, I should be able to sleep long every morning, if I choose to. I also know, that I am usually out the door with the dog about 7 A.M. anyway, but still. I want to sleep long, if I choose to :-D)

Also, I took the Mad Men Era Female Icon Quiz, and it says:

You Are a Jackie!

mm.jackie_.jpg
You are a Jackie.  "I do everything the right way."
Jackies are realistic, conscientious, and principled. They strive to live up to their high ideals.

How to Get Along with Me   
* Take your share of the responsibility so I don't end up with all the work.   
* Acknowledge my achievements.   
* I'm hard on myself. Reassure me that I'm fine the way I am.   
* Tell me that you value my advice.   
* Be fair and considerate, as I am.   
* Apologize if you have been unthoughtful. It will help me to forgive.   
* Gently encourage me to lighten up and to laugh at myself when I get uptight, but hear my worries first.

What I Like About Being a Jackie
* Being self-disciplined and able to accomplish a great deal   
* Working hard to make the world a better place   
* Having high standards and ethics; not compromising myself   
* Being reasonable, responsible, and dedicated in everything I do  
* Being able to put facts together, coming to good understandings, and figuring out wise solutions   
* Being the best I can be and bringing out the best in other people

What's Hard About Being a Jackie   
* Being disappointed with myself or others when my expectations are not met   
* Feeling burdened by too much responsibility   
* Thinking that what I do is never good enough   
* Not being appreciated for what I do for people   
* Being upset because others aren't trying as hard as I am   
* Obsessing about what I did or what I should do   
* Being tense, anxious, and taking things too seriously

Jackies as Children Often   
* Criticize themselves in anticipation of criticism from others   
* Refrain from doing things that they think might not come out perfect   
* Focus on living up to the expectations of their parents and teachers   
* Are very responsible; may assume the role of parent   
* Hold back negative emotions ("good children aren't angry")

Jackies as Parents   
* Teach their children responsibility and strong moral values   
* Are consistent and fair   
* Discipline firmly

Yeah... sort of. And sort of not. I think Grace might be closer to who I really am. But - who am I to question the quizdom? Quizzes are always right and correct :-D

The Golden Eagle's Blog had Teaser Tuesday yesterday. Ok, let's do that then:

C.C.Bergius: Medaljonki (The Medallion)

"Ensin kaikki suui tosin verrattomasti helpommin kuin hän oli otaksunut, ja se oli ilman muuta Horatiuksen ansiota, tämä kun riisui ensimmäisenä tunikansa ja asettui paikallensa hänen näkemättä. Hänen hienotunteisuutensa teki Isidoralle helpommaksi suoriutua siitä, mitä hän oli pelännyt, ja hän olisi tuntenut olonsa täysin vapautuneeksi, joillei olisi pannut merkille sitä, että hänen miehensä virnuili häijysti katsellessaan malliensa varovaista asettumista toivottuun asentoon."


"First everything went splendidly easier than she had assumed, and it was without doubt thanks to Horatius, who took first off his tunic and positioned himself when she wasn't watching. His sensitivity made it easier for Isidora to do what she had feared and she would have been fully unreserved if she hadn't noticed how her husband grinned meanly as he watched his models careful settling into their desired positions."

I bought this book from second hand store for two reasons: my maiden name is Bergius, and this is book about past lives and how the human destinies are woven together. In this book there are five stories of two people; Isa and Phil. First is from modern time, when Isa finds an Egyptian medallion she recognizes, even though she hasn't ever seen it before. It turns out that she has, in her earlier life as Egyptian Isis, Roman Isidora, Spanish Isabel and French Isabelle. In each life she received the medallion from the love of her life, Phil - or Fiops, Philippus, Felipe, Philippe, as he was called in each time and culture...
I think it's interesting that it doesn't seem to have been translated to any other language but Portuguese and Finnish. It was originally written in German. It has been said by some people to be the best historical book they have ever read... Well. It is interesting. I might translate it into English :-D

I like the book, but it turned out that C.C.Bergius was not Bergius at all but Egon-Maria Zimmer :-D He took the name to honor Friedrich Bergius, the German chemist, who got Nobel Prize for Bergius method; turning coal into synthetic fuel.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Some feedback, please?





Now I have been making more than one layout for every day of October. I love doing these, playing with colors, papers, textures and whatnots, but what do you think?
Would you like me to continue doing this?
Anyone out there, who actually appreciates what I do?
I would like to hear from you. :-)

Monday, October 25, 2010

Little one


For this I have used some of ShabbyPrincess' papers and Inkadinkado's stamps. I just adore that autumn cat! Ingenious!

I absolutely adore these mad black cat cookies :-D

I also love these mad alien pumpkins :-D

I am going to participate in NaNoWriMo, for 6th time... I haven't won once :-D It says a lot of my... attention span? Endurance? Commitment capacity? I am multitalented, and it has been a curse as well as a blessing (like everything else...) While I am good at almost anything I do, I can't choose to limit myself to do just one thing. Also, I get interested quickly, and bored as quickly. (Well... quickly and quickly... it usually takes like 3 weeks or so. Not enough for a true commitment, but not quickly enough for me to have ADHD. :-D)

This with commitment makes me think of marriage... I have been married to my husband for 11 1/3 years. I don't see any end to this marriage, I'm fully satisfied and happy... but many would be amazed by how long we have been together...
This is the longest relationship my husband has had, friends included. He has ADHD and some (most) people have problems with that. I come from a family where we suspect many members have some sort of neurological function... er... difference?
I have Asperger's. (I know, it's counted as kind of Autism and I am considered having "bio-neurological  developmental disability", but most Aspies are just as functional as anyone else. There really aren't many "sane" people in the world :-D Most of us suffer from some sort and grade of disorder.)
I find some of his quirks irritating and we fight, but I love him because of who and what he is, and what irritates me is the other side of what attracts me. One can't have one without the other.
The main thing is that when I am to describe him, I would say he's kind, gentle, loving, intelligent, an artist and an inventor... his creativity, eye, understanding of proportions, colors and shapes, his ingenuity... Also, I think he's good-looking too :-D He has a wonderful sense of humor, we are interested in the same things, he loves to read and share what he reads... None of the things I think of when I think of him irritates me the least :-D Sure, he's a sour bear when he wakes up, takes a long time to wake, and usually sleeps to afternoon. He's excellent procrastinator and forgets what he was supposed to be doing. He's codependent and tries to "fix" problems he shouldn't, and every now and then he's hopelessly impractical, and gets these "ideas" that are not that good.
But... I think our marriage is not a commitment issue. It's just... when I married him, I made him part of my family, and I can think of divorcing him just as little as divorcing my parents or my siblings, and "un-making" them my family... it's not a question of being used to being married or being too lazy to change things... it's just that he's my family now.

I think I need to make writing my family.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

So quiet at the blog hop front...

But, Doree Weller has managed to get her poem published in an anthology :-) Wonderful!

The Fire Witch posted about witch hats, and... *sigh* I can't comment on her post, so I'll just post here.
There is no reason why you should decorate your hat only for "fancy parties" or "weddings". I like the Edwardian times and the hats were HUGE at that time. I wouldn't mind wearing something like The Bohemian Goddess' Witch Hat every day. I wouldn't follow the tutorial Fire Witch posted a link to, but I'd use this one: Sally's Gandalf's Hat. Just think of the possibilities! You can have wider brim or cute, narrow brim, add louch or make the steeple stiffer by adding more vlieseline or buckrum or what ever. (Not cardboard!). You can make it of any color and material, and any size... and decorate it as you like :-)
Perfect!

Cattra's World has a very nice teaparty under the October Moon, which was yesterday :-)

I saw this year's first pumpkins in the grocery store on Friday. I felt how my face lit up and I danced to the pumkins and picked one, and then I rolled it on the floor to the scales to weigh it :-)
I have been smiling to myself every time I think about it, or then my inner kid does The Animal going "PUMPKIN, PUMPKIN, PUMPKIN!!!"

My husband and I were making some Samhain decorations yesterday. I love the paper chains, but they are such a dull work... We were watching Bones, and it helped :-D

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Thoughts about decluttering and organizing

I am quite p'd off with the cleaning/de-cluttering/organizing hysteria going on in the world.

I LOVE my Edwardian bohemian home.

Oh, yeah, I like it cluttered.
We have book shelves overflowing of books, and yes, all of them has been read by either of us, most by both. I love art and every empty space is covered with art. I love oriental rugs. I love cushions and throws, I love decorating with textiles, I love statues. I love Chinese furniture. I love swords and knives. I love country kitchens and displays made with interesting objects, like right now I can see one "display" with a clock, two books, two miniature pumpkins, candle lantern, a bottle and a picture in frame. A little right from that I can see a "display" with more candle lanterns, picture and some animal toys I've made, sitting in a ceramic tree I've also made. Over that there's a little Victorian shelf with my fox collection. I love boxes and tins.I love flowers, and I don't care if they are "real" or fabric or paper or what ever.

I know it doesn't LOOK "organized" and "neat" and "tidy" and what ever, but this is the way I want my home to look, and don't you stick your nose into my home and start telling me I HAVE to organize my life better, because it's not working, because I can't find anything, and I can't focus and what ever crap you can come up with. I can find anything I need, unless my dear ADHD husband has borrowed it and left it somewhere.

Sure, I love storage systems, solutions and filing as much as any other Aspie, but fancy storage systems aren't that cheap, you know.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Thoughts about homeschooling

I don't have children, but when I was one myself, I wished I was home-schooled. I actually designed my own curricula :-D It was rather advanced, but I am multi-talented and very intelligent. Perhaps wouldn't fit everyone, but I loved learning and school - like the Librarian ;-)
[Now, don't think I'm bragging, I have Asperger's which means that a) I don't exaggerate and b) even when I am multi-talented and intelligent, there's a lot of things I'm not good at. Everything balances out in the end ;-)]
I built the curricula on my interests and the elementary school curriculum of Finland, and I think I would have managed to keep up with it. I also think I would have a better education now, if I had been homeschooled by my own design. I would be pretty "socially incompatible", but I would also not have PTSD and social phobia.

What I find interesting is that it's rather hard to find a ready-made curricula on-line. Internet is a huge chunk of homeschoolers' resource, and it's not ok that one doesn't find what one needs on-line.

I have been thinking, and this is just my uneducated thoughts - I'm not an educated teacher, I haven't worked (much) with teaching and planning the school year, and I have no personal experience of homeschooling. I am saying what I am saying to give ideas and to help people who are in the situation, and you can ignore everything I say, if it's of no help or use to you, ok?

This is an old elementary school timetable from Finland. These were published in most magazines and given out by banks and stores at Autumn. This is old, so there's 6 days; it was only some 50 years ago children went to school on Saturdays too. I suppose that's the same all over the world. The modern system is five days work and two days weekend.

When the child is about 5-6, he/she should learn to read.
There are different ways of teaching this, but according to my experience, the best way is to treat the words as if they were pictograms, and then teach the child the alphabet separately.
Children should also be read books out loud, and when they learn to read, they should do the reading loud themselves.
This should be exercised every day.
When the child has been reading a couple of years, you should teach the child some basic drama - that is, to read loud well. This can be taught by letting the child listen to audiobooks.

The child should also learn to write after he/she has learned to read. This happens by copying, first letters, then words.
After the child can write both prints and cursive, it's time to exercise this by letting the child write after what you read, and by writing his/her own stories or diary.
It is necessary to have writing at least once a week, preferably 3 times a week.

Have the child to read at least one book every week and let him/her keep a book journal. The length of books doesn't matter, but it should be at least one book every week. There is no better way of learning grammar than by reading books.

Maths is the next subject. Every person should know how to do the basic counting, numbers, addition, subtraction, multiplication and divination. It's not difficult either, and it doesn't matter if the child has learning disabilities or not.
Use an abacus and marbles, or beads. You can also make small chains of beads, with one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine and ten beads in a string, all numbers different colors. You could also get the child a little farm with plastic animals representing numbers. It really doesn't matter if the child learns to count by lifting beans from one bowl to another, or moving plastic (or wooden - or knitted) animals from one pasture to another. Keep it simple. "You have ten beans in this bowl, and five in this, how many do you have alltogether?", "You have thirteen sheep in this pasture. If you move five of them to another pasture, how many sheep do you have left in this one?" 
The best way to learn multiplication is first to teach the kid the concept of multiplication with the beaded strings. 5x5 is five strings with five beads in each. Then the child should learn the multiplication table by heart. You can use flashcards to help the memory process.
Divination is done with the beans or animals. Let the child divide 15 sheep in three pens, or 20 beans in 4 bowls.
Basic maths is really a question of simple drill. Have a counting lesson every day.
Basic math is done during the first years, from class 1 to class 3.

On fourth year you introduce fraction. I think the best way of doing this is with the cake or pizza :-D
You can make cakes out of clay, felt, paper, and divide them into four, five and six pieces. It really doesn't matter if the child understand that 1/4 is a piece of the whole that is divided into four pieces, or if he/she learns the visual idea of a quarter. Let the kid divide food equally to the whole family, or a group of toys, or among friends. Sharing equally is the best way of teaching fraction.

One important and often ignored part of math is money. Money is a really good way of teaching the child basic counting and fraction, as most monetary systems are based on one whole and 1/100 of the whole, like Euro and cents, Dollar and cents, Pound and pennies and so on. It is also percent calculation in practice. Nothing makes learning easier than practical application :-D
Practice the usage of money at home when the child is small by letting him/her "buy" his/her clothes and food, or by having a play store or market. You can make play money our of paper and coins of clay or cardboard.
When the child grows older (7-8), you can let him/her pay the groceries and count the money he/she gets back under your supervision, and then (~10) he/she can go to the shop alone with a shopping list and change purse.

This is what every child should know at the age of 10.
When it comes to more advanced maths and mother-tongue, it would be better to leave the education to people who know what they are doing.

Then there are other things every human being SHOULD know, and this can be divided on the rest of the lesson time, about 2-4 lessons every day.
A 7-10 years old shouldn't have more than 3-4 lessons a day, all together, 11-15 years old can have 6-8 lessons. (A handy tool is to divide the child's age in half and use that as the amount of lessons)

I suggest the daily newspaper creates the frame on which the lessons are build, and you go through one or two news articles with the child, find out where the countries mentioned are, what is being talked about in the article, what is the historical, social, scientific ground for what happened and so on.

Every human being should be aware of that they live on a round planet, that is part of a solar system, that is part of a galaxy, that is part of a universe.

Every human being should have a basic understanding of the geography of this planet, know that there are continents, have at least heard all the names of the today existing countries and where on this planet they are, have knowledge of weather, biomes, geologic provinces and so on and so forth.

Every human being should be able to read a newspaper and understand what is being said in it, and be able to find out more information, question everything, double-check everything and educate him/herself so that he/she is able to form an educated opinion on what he/she reads in the newspaper.

Every human being should have a basic understanding of history all over this planet, religions, politics, philosophies and ideologies that make this humankind act the way it does.

Every human being should have understanding of how the community he/she lives in, social codes and norms, traffic rules, civil rights, infrastructure etc. Visit the local hospital, fire department, police department and social care with your child.

Every human being should have a stronger knowledge and understanding of his/her own background and family history; know who they are and where they come from and what made them be the way they are now.

You should enroll your child to group activities where he/she has to develop his/her communication and social skills with someone who doesn't necessarily share the same values, qualities and attributes as his/her parents/family. Scouts would have been nice, if you can find a politically and religiously free scouts. Sports activities are nice too, like ballet or riding. 4H, Red Cross and other such organizations organize group activities for children. Try to choose these activities so that there is no ideology, religious or political, behind it, or that the ideology that lies behind is such that you can live with it, like Pagan groups. You could also start your own scout group and teach a larger group of children scouting.


Every human being should have a basic understanding of natural science, biology, chemistry and physics. You don't need to "believe" in what the scientists say are truth, but you need to know what they are saying and why.

Every human being should be able to express him/herself with at least one language, preferably with two.
It would be good if the child also knew a little sign language. Even though there are several sign languages in the world, it is easier to understand sign language that is different from your own, than spoken language different from yours. 

Every human being should also be able to express him/herself through art. Drawing is a very simple, mechanical art, that doesn't demand more than practice for a person to be able to do it.

Every human should be able to sing. (Not necessarily well, but enough)

Every human being should be able to do some basic crafts, use a hammer, drill, saw and screwdriver. Get some IKEA furniture and let the child build it. Every human being should also be able to sew a button, darn socks, iron his/her clothes and sew on a patch, and mend their clothes.

Every human being should be able to grow their own food, so if you can't give the child a plot, give him/her some jars so that he/she can grow plants on the windowsill.

Every human being should be able to take care of another living creature, so give the child a pet. Don't give a pet to a child under 10, though, because they really aren't ready to bear the responsibility. I just read about a team of firemen that managed to save a kitten that had been flushed down the toilet by its 3 years old owner. The poor kitten had stuck in the pipes about a meter from the seat and would have suffered a horrible death had it not been rescued. The child did not do this because he was evil, but because she was a child and didn't know any better. (On the other hand, my 3-years-old niece rescued snails and earthworms from the street after rain so that they would not be killed by bikes. Some people are born with compassion toward all life, others not.)

Every human should have basic survival skills and basic first aid skills.

Every human should know how to cook, enough to feed him/herself and his/her family.

Every human should know how to take care of the household, how to clean and make laundry and make beds and such.

Every human being should know how to swim, bike, climb trees and rope, and get a habit of exercising daily.
I also think one should know the basic ballroom dancing, like two-step and waltz.

As every human should know this, so should you, and you don't need expensive books and material to be able to teach all this to your child. In fact, most of this you should be teaching your child outside school, like cooking and biking and doing the laundry. 

The purpose of education is to create adults who can learn what they need to learn, who know how to find out information, who can express themselves, who can take care of themselves and others...
Being a home-schooler means you have a huge responsibility of your child. I suggest you read Noel Steatfeild's The Circus Is Coming, to realize the damage you can cause your child by insisting to home-school, so consider your decision really, really hard before you make it.

Going to an ordinary school shouldn't be a problem, because you can always fill in with the necessary information you think is missing, or if you think the child is being miseducated.
The school shouldn't be responsible of teaching your child the correct, desirable values and spiritual beliefs in the first place, that job is yours, and the only way to do that is by example.
Neither should the school be responsible of teaching your child how to behave. You should have done that already before the kid is 6.

There are things, though, one cannot give to a child at home, like all the possibilities in arts, crafts and sports they can in public school.

On the other hand, you should be aware of the bullying and possible sexual harassment, and other nasty things going on in the public school and take your responsibility as a member of the community you live in and step in to protect all the children, not just your own.

The best way to guard your child against bullying is to see that he/she has friends and they all understand the true meaning of friendship - semper fidelis. No-one left behind. Not even the weak, evil and stupid. It's a question of solidarity, co-humanity, consideration and working together for the greater good of all.
"Solidarity is not a matter of altruism. Solidarity comes from the inability to tolerate the affront to our own integrity of passive or active collaboration in the oppression of others, and from the deep recognition of our most expansive self-interest. From the recognition that, like it or not, our liberation is bound up with that of every other being on the planet, and that politically, spiritually, in our heart of hearts we know anything else is unaffordable."
- Aurora Levins Morales
Bullies and bullying shouldn't be tolerated, not in the name of "sticks and stones", not in the name of "sense of humor", not in the name of "what doesn't kill you" and not in the name of "I was bullied too".  

Also, you should have given your child self-confidence strong enough so that he/she dares to come to you and tell you if a teacher is being unfair (they can be), or if their school mates are not nice, and about everything that happens at school. You should be present enough to listen and to hear your child, and brave enough to stand for your child and go to school and see things change for the better.

What really bothers me is that homeschoolers seem so oblivious to the downsides of homeschooling... so oblivious that they will get pretty nasty when criticized, and vehemently deny any insinuation that there might be something wrong with homeschooling. Of course there is. There is "something wrong" with everything.
To every smart homeschooled kid there are several less smart homeschooled kid, to every socially well adapted person there will be several socially impaired hermits, and so on. Most homeschooled girls become SAHMs and homeschoolers... I mean, one mother said that she had been explaining to her 4-year-old the pros and cons of homeschooling and the girl is happy about being homeschooled... SHE'S FOUR YEARS OLD! How could she make an educated choice? Ah!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

One of these days...


I really hate being sick. My hands are hurting, I'm irritated and tired, my intestines are arguing with me - some sort of inflammation going on - and I have fever. Which means more joint pain and cold... and my head aches. And my loving husband tells me to take pain medication, put some camphor cream on my hands, use my hot wax machine... and even though I appreciate his kindness and compassion and worrying about me, I have no energy to do any of those things.

So, nothing more today. Enjoy the layout :-)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Why Am I A Pagan?

P.S. I read a tongue-in-cheek list of 10 reasons why someone would want to be Jewish. I started thinking that it might help me to recover from my Christianity poisoning if I wrote a list of 10 reasons why I would want to be Christian.

I cannot think of any.

I googled "10 reasons why I want to be Christian". I found nothing.
I googled "reasons why I want to be Christian". Nothing.
No results found for "why I want to be Christian".
(adding 'a' before 'Christian' didn't make any difference)

Obviously no-body wants to be Christian. 8-(

Can't really blame them.

Finally I found a list of 25 reasons why Chris Brundage is a Christian, and I suppose that have to serve as base to my list.

10. The Christian sense of community. (Now, it's so unfortunate Christians are also often chauvinists, and won't share the hospitality but with the people they consider being Christian.)

9. All the amazing Christian music. (I am fully aware that me not being a Christian doesn't make the music inaccessible and unenjoyable to me. I might not agree with the lyrics, but it's not the text I care about. It's the music. Johann Sebastian Bach... Handel... Oooh... Mozart's Requiem... Oh!)

8. The influence of Catholic church in creating non-Christian scholars... What ever I think of Christians, they did teach a lot of kids to read and write in order to get more copies of the Bible and other Christian scriptures, and I doubt that would have happened otherwise. Or then it would have, and even quicker, like it happened in the Arab world and China.)

7. Gothic cathedrals. (On the other hand, a centuries old redwood forest is better. :-))

6. St. Francis of Assisi, C.S.Lewis, Martin Luther King jr, Albert Schweizer and all the other "good Christians".

5. Er...

Now I have been wandering around the net and reading the different lists of people explaining why they are Christian, and... it just makes me angry, tired and sad.Nietzsche was right. "Whoever battles monsters should take care not to become a monster too, for if you stare long enough into the Abyss, the Abyss stares back into you."
The Apologetics have been trying to prove the unprovable, so they have stooped into logical monstrosities. Faith is not science, and shouldn't be treated as such either.

Michael Rowe on Anne Rice


Ok - why am I a Pagan?

1. Because I believe in God
2. Because I cannot, will not, want not and do not accept the dogmas of other existing religions and forms of spirituality.

It really is that simple, isn't it? :-D

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Gary Zukav's The Seat of Soul

I got myself Gary Zukav's The Seat of Soul and I am disappointed.

I thought this "new spirituality" is something good and nice, but now I see that it is just neo-Christian imperialism... The sugar dripping from the pages is nauseating.

The book and the theories presented in it are all based on a couple of Usonian ideas:

1) Christianity is the highest form of the "old" spiritualities, therefore the Christian ideals are desirable and true, and Jesus was a "great teacher". Any "new" form of spirituality is therefore also built on Christianity.

2) The Usonian way of life, Usonian dream, Usonian attitudes, POV and values are the best way of life, but as it leaves no space for spirituality, it must be adjusted a little, but only a little. Because Usonians believe that there are no more values than freedom and power, the Usonians believe that the whole world believes the same way, and therefore telling people that there are other values that are actually more beneficial to the humankind in whole and to each individual, is seen as something new and revolutionary. That the "old" world has been thinking this way for over 4000 years is totally irrelevant, unless of course, one is referring to Indians. (Which word in itself basically means "the people who live by the river Indus", that is Pakistanis, but who cares.)

3) "It's my way or the highway", meaning that in spite of all the talk of diversity and freedom, everyone is expected to hold the same values and principles and appreciate the same things, so naturally everyone WANTS the same dreams and goals and the best result would be uniformity - everyone being copies of each other, sharing thoughts and values, worshiping the same God (that is, Jesus, called "universal principle" or what ever) - everyone being Usonian. :->

So this is practically of no value to me, who actually thinks that the humankind is born with "desirable and good ideals", who think Christianity is NOT the highest form of spirituality and Usonians are not ideal people. I'm disappointed, but - not that surprised.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Profanity doesn't hurt

Profanity doesn't hurt anything except some people's sensitivities, "decency". Verbal bullying, on the other hand, can cause PTSD, which is one of the biggest causes of people not being able to function as well as they would otherwise, causing economical and social problems. Cussing just makes some tightpants uncomfortable.
Now, that doesn't mean you don't need to think what kind of language you use. Profanities give a bad impression of you. People using profanities are considered stupid and inconsiderate. If you are ok with this impression of you, or think people shouldn't be judging others due to such shallow reasons, don't stop cursing.

If you think one shouldn't be cussing, then don't cuss. Don't "replace" cussing with anything, just stop.

I grew up in a family where no-one cursed, ever, for any reason, in any language, in any manner, form or style. That means, that if someone managed to hit oneself on thumb with a hammer, one perhaps yelled "AUCH!", but didn't swear, curse or cuss. No "hopscotch", "santa vaca", "bumblebee" or four letter words. So I know there is no need for such words.

When one felt frustrated in traffic, one didn't start saying "for crying out loud". My father might take a deep breath or smile sarcastically when someone did something stupid in traffic, but no swearing, no verbal expressions of frustration or anger, no exclamations, interjection or emphatics. Frankly, I don't think any of us felt especially frustrated in traffic at all. There will always be idiots in the traffic, so you shouldn't enter thinking there aren't any. Just change your attitude, and think that it may take the time it does. Put on the radio and sing along, if you can't stop getting irritated by what others are doing.

"Oh my gosh!" is saying "oh my God!" in a way one thinks one isn't using God's name in vain... but what IS God's name? Who knows it's not Gosh? Just don't. It really is quite adequate to say "aah!" and "ooh!" or use a little more words to say "this is ---".

Saying "holy cow" in any language is just as unnecessary. Just don't.

Giving someone "whole turkey" is just as profane as showing them your midfinger. There is no need for such sign language.You don't need to tell another person that you are upset with them, neither do you need to respond to people telling they are upset with you. It is quite enough to learn and use the polite signs, like "hi", "bye", "ok", and "thank you".

Sunday, October 17, 2010

I believe in God

I believe in God. I don't need any "revelations" to know God is and has created me. It really doesn't matter whether I believe or not, or what I believe, because I don't believe God cares about whether we believe in Her or not. What matters is what we actually DO, not what we SAY we do. The world is full of people who live a full, ethical life and are "good" people without believing in God.

"Pascal's Wager" doesn't really work with anything but some extreme religious cults, that believe God punishes people hard for not BELIEVING in "Him", and for not "being good", that is, following "the law" perfectly, not because it's good, but because God told you to do it. If one believes in a loving God like I do, a just God, who punishes and rewards you according to how you have lived your life, and not according to which words you choose when expressing yourself - again, like I do - then there is nothing won or lost whether you believe or not. If God is NOT loving and just, but arbitrary, chauvinist and in love with himself, I'd rather "burn in hell" than spend one second in "heaven" filled with those of my siblings, who spent their lives brownnosing this god with favorites.

Now, why would one believe in good, kind and loving God? If believing in God doesn't give you any benefits, why bother believing in God? If people who don't believe gets the same consequences, if they are not punished and I rewarded for the simple act of believing, why would I believe?
I believe because I cannot not believe. I believe because I believe, not because I am trying to earn myself bonus points, or get myself some advantages others don't have. I have experienced atheism. There was a week in my life, when there was no God. All the prayers, rituals and gratitude meant nothing. They were just words. One cannot be forced or persuaded to believe, if one doesn't believe, nor forced not to believe if one believes. Belief is not a choice. This is why I cannot assign divine punishment to the majority of my kin, the human kin, just because they believe differently, or don't believe at all.
If God really created us all, if we all are really God's "children", then God will love us all, as we all are exactly what She made us be, and belief is a gift from God, and it would be deeply unfair to "punish" people She didn't bestow the gift of belief... that would mean She has chosen the "good kids" already as She made us. That would mean that it doesn't matter what ever we believe - or want to believe, or act as if we believed, as "Pascal's Wager" suggests, and it doesn't matter that we try to live according to the rules we believe God set upon us. I refuse to believe in God like that.

Some people know so little about other religions but their own, that they are quick to think that only their own God is the one, one should believe in. There are rules by which to live in all religions, and divine reward/punishment system, even if it might not be "heaven-hell" philosophy. My God will make me experience exactly what I have caused others to experience, just like everyone else. This is why I should try to live my life so that I cause nice things, things I want to experience myself, to others. It is sort of "Golden Rule", except that it's really just a common sense logic. I reap what I sow. A smile breeds smiles and kindness is rewarded with kindness. I believe in causes and consequences. Humans cannot give you perfect justice, because we don't live in a vacuum - I might reap what someone else sows in this life, in the communication with other human beings, but at least I can trust God being perfect justice, and me being rewarded for the good I do.

Even if I didn't believe in this, I believe that in the long run everything will balance out everything else. I WILL reap what I sow, even if it might take several years or a whole lifetime. In my mind the consequences in this lifetime are not at all insignificant. They are very clearly reason enough to have moral guidelines to the life. After all, most humans are living in the moment, and will not get a habit with no immediate reward, reward in THIS life. After all, no-one knows what will happen after death. It IS possible that there is nothing after death.

I am a monotheist. I believe there is only one God, only one Highest Power, and nothing that comes even close. I believe in angels, spirits, fairies and other beings.
I believe in the God of Jews, because I believe there IS only One God, but I am not Jewish, because I don't believe the rules given to the Jews have anything to do with anyone else. That's between the Jews and God.
I don't believe Jesus of Nazareth was the Son of God. I don't believe ANYONE is, has been or will be "Son of God" more than that we all are "God's Children", in that God created us all.
I don't believe any human being is more worth spiritually than another. I don't believe in incarnation of God. I don't believe God can take upon Herself a "human form" or breed with Her creation.
I don't believe people will be elevated into divine or godlike existence after their death.
I believe we are all 100% equal human beings. I believe we have been created human, and we will stay human. You can take an old teacup and make it into a pin cushion, but the teacup will still be porceline - and a teacup. You can break the teacup and create a mosaic table top of it, but the pieces will still be porceline - and pieces of a teacup.

This is why I don't believe in what is said in the Greek Scriptures. I believe the Greek Scriptures (aka New Testament) is a collection of writings of people with an agenda. I believe many of them use one specific fictional writing as a base, and this explains the similarities. (Think of all the Arthur stories circulating around. There are similar discrepancies and conflicts in those too.) I believe all the witness encounters of Jesus existence (like Josephus) are mere hearsays, repeated stories, and just as true as stories of King Arthur. Meaning, there's always a tiny possibility that I'm wrong, but I would be very surprised if I was :-D
Frankly, it's easier for me to think that the Greek Scriptures are fictional than to think that a Jewish man living some 2000 years ago said to his friends: "this is my blood, drink it", and his friends (all Jewish men) drank... (Believing that there was a Jewish megalomaniac man believing to be God - not a problem. Believing that he was God? No, nay, never!)

Now, as I don't "believe" in Holy Scriptures, what do I think God "wants us to do"? What is this "what we do" that is important? I believe God put inside the people "the knowledge of good and bad". We call it "the conscience".



Today's layout has stamps from The Enchanted Gallery. I love her work :-)

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Welcome to a tea party :-)

A Fanciful Twist is organizing a blog hop tea party in honor of Samhain and October, and I am participating in it, so if you are here, you might have arrived for a cup of tea. :-)

First, I am sure Vanessa will be arranging a Halloween tea party with no comparison or competition, because she is amazing, creative, imaginative and generous like that :-)

This tea party of mine will be arranged in the imaginary garden of my imaginary Witch's House. It is a Victorian house, with many towers and windows and balconies and all kind of architectural structures that make Victorian houses such a delight for people like me, who like a bit of a mess :-D There will be interesting details in all over the house, like chimney tops that look like owls and cats, dragon head water pipes and gargoyles in the woodwork.
The house will be surrounded by iron fence and gates, that too are made to look like dragons and flowers and all sorts of fancy and fantastic things.
The garden is a bit wild, with everything growing together, flowers, herbs and vegetables. Most of the herbs and vegetables are already picked, but the perennas are still there. Chrysanthemums, asters and marigolds are blooming in full flame of yellows and oranges, together with the blaze of leaves of the bushes and trees around.

When you arrive there, you will see a table set in the middle of the garden with comfortable wicker chairs with sheep fur rugs on them, so you will be quite comfortable and warm and cozy during the tea party.
Now, I would like to point out that this photo is NOT about witches. 
This was a common folk costume for old women in England and Wales, 
and in some places the old ladies still wear something similar. 
I do not intend to say the women in the photo were witches, 
even though I have absolutely no malicious or unpleasant association with the word 
and in fact would consider it an honorary title. 
I doubt these ladies saw it that way though. :-)

The tables are set in a baroque, Russian style, with a brocade cloth and a Russian flower scarf on top of that.
The table is set with brass and Chochloma ware, and wonderful amber crystal glasses.
There is also  some very specific Samhain teacups, handpainted with marigolds and gilded. The inside is pale, so that tealeaves can be read after drinking the tea, if so desired.
 For tea there's always some sandwiches, and some sweet treats.
If you wish to have a Halloween theme for the tea party, you could serve this:
graveyard sandwiches
Calavera sandwiches are really pretty
you could also cut your cucumber sandwiches with ghost or pumpkin cookie cutter - if you want to.
Or use shredded ham as filling in the sandwiches. It looks a bit like worms. :-D
Britta has amazing ideas that would fit perfectly for a spooky tea party.
These owl cupcakes are really cute

My tea party will serve vegetarian sandwichessome spicy carrot pastries and cabbage piroshki as savories, and as sweets, there will be cream scones with clotted cream and pumpkin jam (and Mrs. Beeton's Carrot Jam), carrot cake and sweet potato pie. :-)

And then there would be interesting discussing going on, and some party games, and the marigold fairies would have a good laugh at all the silliness going on in the garden...

Friday, October 15, 2010

Symbolism of Samhain colors

The colors associated with holidays haven't been chosen in random. I believe there are no co-incidents, and God made earth (soil) and night black and root vegetables and pumpkins and autumn leaves different shades of warm yellows and oranges for a reason.

Orange and warm yellows and reds stimulate activity and socialization. We get creative and happy of the color. Feng Shui says using orange in a home promotes lively conversations and good times in the home. It gives you emotional energy and general sense of well-being, so you can treat others with compassion and warmth, which is so needed at this dark time of the year. In chakras orange stands for joy and creativity, and the lack of orange makes us experience fear, anxiety, attachments to material things, a lack of compassion and distrust. (That sounds so familiar to me... I think there are more stories spreading fear and suspicions around this time of the year than any other...


Marigolds (calendula, tagetes) is the symbolic flower of Samhain.

Black is "the color of the night". The deep space behind stars is black, and the deepness of earth is black. This is why black is associated with solemnity and spiritual things, the depths of the unknown, which is so very present at this time of the year. Black is also the symbol of Other Worlds and Otherkin (fairies and such), and death (being part of the Unknown). In the modern world, black has also become a symbol of every activity happening in the dark, in secrecy, like crime and evil, but also magic and occult things, which Christianity banned into the darkness of night.

The word "black" comes from words meaning "burned" and "ink". The word "orange" comes from the Sanskrit word meaning the fruit tree, orange. Before that the color was simply called "yellow-red". (yellow = wood, and red = blood.)


For today: The Simple Woman's Daybook

Blog Action Day

The theme of Blog Action Day this year is WATER

One of my heroes is Dean Kamen.  He has made a water purifier, called Slingshot

"Dean Kamen, the engineer who invented the Segway, is puzzling over a new equation these days. An estimated 1.1 billion people in the world don't have access to clean drinking water, and an estimated 1.6 billion don't have electricity. Those figures add up to a big problem for the world—and an equally big opportunity for entrepreneurs.

To solve the problem, he's invented two devices, each about the size of a washing machine that can provide much-needed power and clean water in rural villages.

"Eighty percent of all the diseases you could name would be wiped out if you just gave people clean water," says Kamen. "The water purifier makes 1,000 liters of clean water a day, and we don't care what goes into it. And the power generator makes a kilowatt off of anything that burns."

"Mr. Kamen is aiming to sell the devices for $2,000 to aid organizations."

Now, I do hope that happens. I haven't heard anything of this since 2006.  I would participate in funding these. :-)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Children's Feast

It's not only ancestors and old people who should be remembered during Samhain. The generations continue to the other direction, to the children and grandchildren too, and a lot of Samhain celebration should be done with kids in mind - inner kids included :-)

Pottery Barn Halloween inspiration
Feasting on bones, spiders and worms...
Some Halloween craft ideas (and others)
Love these Creepy Specimen Art. Tatertots and Jello has other nice Halloween ideas.
This Blessed Nest has a silhouette party. She too has some nice ideas for Halloween.
A lesson outline for Pagan children - Samhain
The Troll's Tear
Celebrating Samhain - Pagan parenting


My husband had ideas about scrapbooking layouts, so I made the following two for him. I'm not too fond of them, but... I love my husband and his 6 years old inner child :-)


The bear in pumpkin suit is from here: mypersonilizedbears.
I don't know if she has drawn it, or if it's drawn by someone else, but it's cute and my hubby is a bear, so...

I'm really not happy with this one... perhaps I'll change it in the future. It looks a bit like a 50's poster.

P.S. About the bee keeping course yesterday. It wasn't an inner saboteur in action. It turned out that when I actually listened to the inner voice, she had fully acceptable, reasonable, valid reasons not to go, so I didn't go.
The basic thing is that I AM sick. I DO suffer from "mental illness", how ever nasty connotations the word has. I do suffer from social phobia and panic anxiety disorder due to having Asperger's and having been bullied through my teens. I never really learned the correct social codes... It is so sad that people are not aware of the impact of these years in the end of our childhood... it's horrible that kids in such a sensitive and chaotic mental state have to live through High School... I wonder if there are ANY people who actually LIKED the High School, and would want to go back... I have heard even the popular kids, the beautiful people, talk about how horrible High School was.
In my mind young people SHOULD be separated during the school time according to their gender and interests. Or home-schooled.
The problem with homeschooling is that mothers (who most of the time are responsible for teaching the kids) are not qualified teachers. I mean, anyone can be a teacher, but being a GOOD teacher is VERY difficult and requires a LOT of talents and empathy.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Pumpkins, bees and saboteurs

I like number 13. Every time it's 13th, I feel a little excited jump inside me. 13th is special. Every Friday 13th has been perfect to me :-) I was always happy if we had a test in school on Friday 13th, I knew I'd always get a 10. :-D

It's the first day of my bee keeping class, and I don't want to go. It's cold outside, I have nothing to wear, I need to take a train and a buss and travel an hour to get there, it's strange people I've never met before, and why do I want to learn bee keeping? I remember how excited and happy I was, how proud I was when I took the step and signed in for the course... and now I don't want to go. Not at all. No reason. I won't regret not going. I don't want to go, I won't go...
I know I want to. I know I will be miserable if I won't. I've already paid, and 1000 kronas is a lot of money for us. I keep reading things about bee keeping, like "The Barefoot Beekeeper: Why do you want to keep bees?" or "So You Want To Keep Bees?" and... it's like...
I have a pet. A dog. I don't need another.
I hate honey and beeswax.
I won't be doing any stuff with this. I don't do anything already as it is. Why would it change just because I go to a beekeeping course.
*sigh*

I go and meditate and try to catch this self-saboteur inside me telling me not to go.


I think this one is fun :-) You cut out pumpkin pattern from orange cardboard and dapple some green on the stump. You dapple the ivy leaves on the base paper, glue on the pumpkins, then stamp on the pumpkin. Journal box is white paper glued on dappled cardboard. Pictures are cut into pumpkin shapes and glued onto the pumpkins.

32 creative ways to decorate a pumpkin.
I still prefer the good, old, traditional face :-D

"Make a witch's cord
Witch's cords are beautiful and make great decorations. The Samhain witches cord should be an expression of what you wish or hope for the New Year. Take three strands of ribbon or silk cord in three different colors, each about three three feet long. Choose colors that symbolize your hopes for the New Year. Fold one end down about five inches and tie together in a knot to make a loop so the cord can be hung. Braid the strands together, reciting your wishes and hopes and tie at least three knots on the tail. You can add anything you want to the cords - feathers, stones, herbs, little toys, tokens in remembrance of a loved one, etc."


I like Julie's taste :-D

repurposed tricks and treats - Nice!

Halloween craft inspiration from Flickr -Here's some of my favorites:
Monster Petal by JunkerJane
brooch by Noia Land
La Muerta by Gwen
Prim Black Halloween Cat by Old World Primitives
Extremely crouchy Blackie by Violetpie (My husband says that's the way my cats looked at him...)
Jackyll and Hide by HelloYarn! - this is a brilliant Halloween costume :-) One size fits all, it's cheap, easy but very effective, and reusable :-) Here's the blog entry.
Seasonal Home Decor by Tiffany Jane

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Silver knotwork of humankind



I really like creating scrapbooking layouts :-D
Now, I do mine in PSP8, and these are just layouts, no photos attached. (Yeah, yeah, the old song... can't afford... No. I choose to use my money on other things. THAT's what it's all about. Some people choose to buy scrapbooking materials, I choose to buy other things, like books and other kind of art materials. I'm totally addicted to colored pencils :-D)
So, this one - use a nice patterned paper as base, make a cute little pumpkin of small scraps of orange paper, and write some words on it that to you associate to Samhain. I have written "Tradition, Other World, Family, Don't Be Afraid, Harvest".

We use two words in Finnish for "family", "perhe" and "suku" - The first one is for the immediate family, mother, father, siblings, children. The second is for the extended family, grandparents, aunts, uncles, ancestors and grandchildren - the relatives. To me Samhain is the day of the year, when I really feel the silver lines from thousands of years behind me to thousands of years in front of me. Now, I don't have any children, and probably won't ever have any, so there really are no silver lines in front of me, but I'm still connected to the silver lines of my siblings... It's like a wonderful, great Celtic knotwork...

At this time of year I do believe in past lives :-D So the silver knotwork is in two layers - there's the family one, of ancestry and bloodlines, and then there's the one of witchcraft. I believe I am a witch, born witch, and I have always been a witch, that in spite of which bloodline and which culture I'm born in, I will be a witch. A shaman, a healer, a druid, a priestess... who ever works with magic and nature in that current culture and tradition. I believe I carry with me the knowledge

I really like My Ghoul Friday :-)

and The Toymaker :-)

Artsy Mama has always nice things. Like her 13 days of Halloween: garlands.

Monday, October 11, 2010

3600 summer cats...

Some idiot here in Sweden let out 3600 minks from a fur farm. I don't thin k it's ok to raise and kill animals just for luxury furs, but letting the animals out in the cold October... it's like taking kittens in June and then leaving them at the summer cottage alone, to fend for themselves, when Autumn comes and the rest of the family moves back to the city. It's like stealing someone's cat just to take it to wilderness and leave it there.

Now, most of these minks come back home when it's time to eat, but there are always plenty who won't... Most of them will starve to death, some of them will be emptying the countryside from all small life, like mice, causing an imbalance in the nature, stealing food from the natural wildlife that has been regulating the size of the colonies according to the amount of food... which in turn will cause some wild martens, foxes and other small predators to starve to death in Spring.

So "kind" of you, "animal lover". I hope you have nightmares REST OF YOUR MISERABLE, SELFISH, INCONSIDERATE, STUPID LIFE.


But here's a Samhain layout for photos of your black cat ;-)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Triple 10 day

10.10.10.

There must be some significance in "coincidents" like this... I know our reckoning is totally arbitrary, but... what if it isn't?

We are very lucky... we have lived through 01-01-01, 02-02-02, 03-03-03, and probably will live 12-12-12... but then we have to wait for 100 years for this to happen again. My grandfather never experienced 01-01-01... he was born in December 1901, and he died 199--- something. I don't remember anymore. 1992, perhaps?
My father might not see 12-12-12. I hope he does, but only if it's not too painful for him.

Number 10 is the symbol of the matter in harmony - 4 + 6

For Pythagoras, 10 was the symbol of the universe and it also expressed the whole of human knowledge.

Sum of 5 + 5, the number 10 represents the two opposite current directions of the conscience: involution and evolution.

According to H.- P. Blavatsky, the 1 followed by 0 indicates the column and the circle, meaning the principle of the female and male, and this symbol would refer to the Androgynous nature and also to Jehovah, being at the same time male and female.

The zero in the form of circle is a symbol of unit, completing then the meaning of the number 1 to show that the number 10 contains all preceding numbers as a whole contains its parts.

The number ten is regarded as the most perfect of numbers, because it contains the Unit that did it all, and the zero, symbol of the matter and the Chaos, of which all came out; it then includes in its figure the created and the non-created, the beginning and the end, the power and the force, the life and the nothing.

According to Agrippa, "ten is called the number of all or universal, and the complete number marking the full course of life." Also he attributes to it a sence of totality, the achievement, the return to the unit after the development of the cycle of the first nine numbers.

At the Mayas, it represents the end of a cycle and the beginning of another. The ten was regarded as being the number of the life and the death.

In China, the cross represents the number 10 - as the totality of the numbers.

Ten implies completeness of order, nothing lacking and nothing over.

10 signifies that the cycle is complete and that everything is in its proper order. 10 represents the perfection of divine order.

It is our natural, physical bodies with ten fingers and toes that make it "natural" to use a counting system based upon tens.

symbolic dimes

But... I don't know. I don't expect anything special happen today. I have lived the end of one Millennium and the beginning of another, and nothing happened. Nothing happened on the previous triple days either.



I'm really proud of this one :-D

The poem is Sonnet 100 by Lord Brooke Fulke Greville (1633)


In night when colors all to black are cast,
Distinction lost, or gone down with the light;
The eye a watch to inward senses placed,
Not seeing, yet still having powers of sight,

Gives vain alarums to the inward sense,
Where fear stirred up with witty tyranny,
Confounds all powers, and thorough self-offense,
Doth forge and raise impossibility:

Such as in thick depriving darknesses,
Proper reflections of the error be,
And images of self-confusednesses,
Which hurt imaginations only see;

And from this nothing seen, tells news of devils,
Which but expressions be of inward evils.