Thursday, August 27, 2015

Mabon Bingo

Adapted from Thanksgiving Bingo

You will need:
as many bingo calling cards as you have players, and one for the caller
some blu-tack or pins and corkboard or some other such, to keep the cards in square for playing. (read the whole instruction to understand.)
15 markers for each player. These could be nuts, for example.

Cut all into squares.All the players and the caller mix their squares in front of them, picture side down.
The players pick 16 cards and arrange them into a square, which ever way they like.
(If there are some kids who like to copy someone else, let them arrange the square in the order they pick them up. In four rows, four cards in each row.)
It might be good to have some blu-tack to tack the cards in the square, so that they won't get mixed during the game
Caller turns over a card randomly and calls out the picture.
Any player with that image, lays a marker on top.
Play continues until the some gets four in row in any direction including diagonally and shouts out BINGO!

(You can, of course, adjust the cards to your own symbols and traditions. This is mine.)

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Autumn Bucket List 2015

My autumn... well... datewise it's from Lammas to Samhain. But August doesn't feel like autumn :-D And I am divided, because I do feel Mother knows best, better than our calculations, traditions and calenders. Basically... one could think the autumn is when most trees have changed colors. But... that seems to be happening later and later every decade, and I am not going to wait for October to celebrate Autumn. I would miss Mabon! So - from Lammas to Samhain it is, and I am going to explain August as "the first days of autumn that feel like summer still", just as the first days of spring feel like winter etc.

Different definitions of autumn:
- astronomical - begins at Autumn Equinox, ends at Winter Solstice
- meteorological - here it's "Summer is when the median temperature of days is over 10 °C five or more subsequent days", so when the median temperature sinks below 10 °C. In USA it's "June, July, August"

- write an autumn bucket list

- write a list of 92 things you love/like about autumn

If you don't get 92 things on your list, don't worry. Write as many as you can think of.

- commit to take a photo on each day of Autumn according to this list of your personal favorites. This is why the number os 92. If you didn't get 92 things, don't worry about it, just take more photos of some of your favorites. 

- get better with photographing.

- Search "[name of the month] photo/photography challenge". There's dozens of suggestions on-line. Pick your favorites, print the list and cut it into strips, and put the strips in a bowl. Every day of Autumn, pick a strip and take a photo. 

Yes, it's a lot of photos. But it doesn't take more than a couple of minutes top most to snap a photo of a thing. It doesn't need to be the greatest photo in the history of photography. It doesn't even need to be a good photo. Or a photo you are proud of. Or a photo you like. It just needs to be a photo of something. 

- Start an Autumn journal
  • a bit like "December Daily", though this is "August/September/October Daily"
  • illustrate it with your photos-a-day
  • make the pages like an art journal, "Project Life" page or a scrapbook page. 
  • make a page every day
  • there are different journal prompts around, and "project life" prompts etc. Use them.
  • write down the best part of each day. This doesn't need to be perfect, amazing, inspiring or even good. "best" means "the least bad". 
  • start a gratitude journal - write this, too, in your autumn journal
  • start writing morning pages. Write these to separate pages and add to your journal.
  • keep a nature journal or notebook. Write down the weather and nature phenomenon you observed. For this you need to take a nature walk every day with your camera... so we'll get both practice with camera and exercise in the list just like that :-D 
  • Pick a beautiful tree and take a photo of it once a week from the same spot, to see how the seasons change. Pick a tree with beautiful autumn colors, like a maple or aspen. Rowens are nice too, with their berries.
  • "Sharpen your Observational Skills through Drawing" - again, it doesn't need to be good. The point is to sharpen your observational skills, not to make art... and that you will get better with drawing is just a bonus. ;-)
  • "Think about the “seasons” of life, and write a letter to yourself about what you will savor about this season"

- clean your home for winter. There are several "fall cleaning" checklists and suggestions on-line.

- decorate your home

- prepare your wardrobe for the transition.
Create a fall capsule wardrobe fit for your lifestyle, activities and purposes.
On my list is "tweed promenade suit, 40's felt hat, plenty of patterned tights, brogue oxfords with heel, leather gloves"
Check the sweaters and cardigans, let them air in the crisp autumn air and start wearing them.
Get a pair of good, comfortable, classic fall boots you will be wearing the rest of your life, and a pair of boot socks.

- Knit something. Learn to knit. On my list is a white, soft aran sweater and a fair-isle set of vest and cardigan. And a tam.

- Take the "week of dressing dangerously" challenge.
Look at all the clothing styles people have, all the costumes, all the tv-series and everything where people wear clothes. Pick five favorites. Pick five of the costumes or outfits you wish you had or could wear or would wear "if..." If you were skinny or curvy. If you were tall or short. If you were a man. If you were in your favorite fantasy world. If you were your favorite superhero. If you were a rock star.
Get yourself these outfits/costumes.
Wear them a whole day, as if it was your normal attire.

On my list
  1. tree
  2. steampunk
  3. goth
  4. gypsy
Change your life in 30 areas to reduce your carbon footprint

I do have the Japanese "oil from plastic" machine on my shopping list... and then I will be making oil. But until I get one - or build one - there are other things to do.
  • have a “earth day” every day – 1 hour of no electricity
  • use water as if it was a rarity
  • use electricity as if it was a rarity
  • get a bike
  • start walking at least one hour every day
  • get a monthly bus pass and get to know your town.
  • get good curtains to every window – black curtains and thick side curtains
  • turn off lights
  • unplug items not in use
  • get more houseplants
  • plant more trees
  • keep the electric appliances clean
  • learn to use no fire cookers
  • minimize your belongings – take the 100 things challenge. Only keep things you love and that make you feel good
  • eat more veggies and fruits. Have at least one vegetarian day every week.
  • eat more locally produced and organic food
  • write a food plan and keep it
  • stop throwing food away
  • cook from scratch
  • eat less
  • shorter showers
  • take the stairs. Elevators and escalators use electricity.
  • get a compost and start composting everything that can be composted
  • recycle all your garbage
  • start cleaning your environment. “roska päivässä” movement
  • change electric appliances to manpowered, crank or treadle powered
  • use less dishes and wash them by hand, air dry
  • use less clothes and use them wisely. Get work clothes and use clothes-protecting items like aprons and sleeve covers. Air your clothes often, wash them less.
  • buy minimally packaged goods, and make things of the packaging
  • eliminate disposable products - make reusable pads, reusable produce bags, reusable handkerchiefs, reusable shopping bags, sandwich bags, reusable bowl covers for the fridge etc.
  • check how to use cloth instead of toilet paper (this is VERY EXTREME)
- One of the most important "things" in my life, one "thing" I'm grateful every day, is my husband, and I want to do things for our relationship.
There was a list of some 25 things you could do this fall with your husband, but I can't find it :-( There were really nice ideas.
There are also "fall dating ideas" lists. Go through some and pick things that sound reasonable to do with your spouse.

Go to a date every week in Autumn
  • spend a whole morning in bed
  • write a fall bucket list together
  • go reading together in a park with sammies and wine
  • go tossing a frisbee
  • make a kite together and go flying it
  • build a fort in living room and have a movie night
  • have a ghostbusters movie night
  • have a scary movie marathon
  • have a Harry Potter movie marathon
  • read ghost stories to each other in candlelight
  • make a quilt together for snuggling
  • have a game night
  • go to a market, buy things and come home to cook something with those things
  • cook a romantic dinner togehter
  • bake together
  • go to a flea market, second hand etc. buy a piece of furniture and fix it together
  • go on a bookstore date
  • go on a sunrise or sunset date
  • go shopping some fall decor and things
  • go picking some nature elements that can be used to make fall decorations with, and make fall decorations together
  • make autumnal gingerbread house
  • go to a picnic in a romantic place and play in leaves
  • get bicycles for both of us and go on a biking tour with picnic basket
  • go bowling
  • go play pool
  • go hiking and camping, spend a night in the wilderness and watch stars together, by a fire, in a blanket, and make s'mores
  • get a new hobby together (I chose cabinetmaking :-D)
  • learn a foreign language together (I chose French)
  • learn to dance with my spouse and go dancing
  • learn to give massage and give each other massage
  • paint each other's portrait
  • go tour your home town; either take a guided tour or find out information to share with each other
  • learn to play an instrument together (I chose guitar)
  • learn to play a new card game
  • practice yoga daily together
  • go on a "day trip" (I chose a zoo nearby, which is going to take the whole day.)
  • take a CPR/first aid course together
  • learn to make candles
  • make candy together
For this I added three things to my own autumn bucket list:

* build a home theater (within our resources, naturally. It might not be much more than rearranging the living room so that the television and comfy chairs are "strategically" placed with the coffee table - but that alone would improve the movie and tv watching time together.)

* build a fake fireplace (to be able to cuddle in front of the fireplace and to decorate the mantel)

* make a "cuddle kit"

Write - I have a couple of books I need to write on my list

Compile a collection of spooky stories

Have a teddy bears' picnic, October 27th (The International Teddy Bear Day)

Host or attend a fall festival with fun games, crafts, and prizes!

Invites friends over for chili night

Have a sock knitting bee

Learn orienteering

Learn the Thriller dance

Make 30 autumn cards and send to people

Make a pinecone weather station

Have a board-game night

Play hide and seek outside

Play pumpkin bowling

Prepare the balcony for winter

Find five scents that feels like autumn

Learn to solve puzzle cubes

Surprise someone you love with a fall-colored mum

Take a walk in the rain, without an umbrella. Don’t resist the urge to jump in puddles

Visit a craft show with friends

Visit a haunted house

Visit Skogskyrkogård

Stay up late and watch the harvest moon 28/9

Celebrate Rosh Hashanah September 14.

Celebrate Yom Kippur September 22.

Celebrate Sukkot September 28-October 5

Celebrate the Moon Festival or Mooncake Festival September 27

Celebrate Mabon 23/9

Celebrate National Potato Day, 19/8

Celebrate Oktoberfest

Have a Halloween bonfire with hot apple cider

Have a Halloween masquerade party with apple bobbing

Build a Dia de los Muertos altar

Collect autumn leaves

Plant Lily-of-the-valleys for Independence Day

Create an autumn nature table

Enjoy autumn

Go apple picking in an apple orchard

Go indoor apple picking

Go for an early morning walk and watch the sun rise on a cool, crisp day

Go to a leaf hunt

jump in leaf piles

Make a fall leaf maze

Make a nature shadow box

Make land art with leaves

Play conkers

Play with a fall sensory bucket

Look for signs of fall

Play fall "I Spy"

decorate an autumn cake

Get 8 Sabbath boxes and start filling them. (I want 8 big boxes with all the Sabbath associated stuff in, and nothing more.)

celebrate Mabon

Do some Autumn crafts
The following is from my personal bucket list, so not autumn related

Paint china

Improve my French

Improve my German

Learn the basics of all Celtic languages

Learn Latin
Learn hulahooping

learn whip cracking

learn baton twirling

learn herping

learn juggling

learn to brew cider, mead, ale, wine



reconnect with highschool friends

build a baker's cabinet

make 3 baskets in different ways

make 3 beaded works

learn leather work

learn flowerwork

learn bonecarving

create a cactus tray

create a terrarium

create a bonsai tree

make 30 books in 30 days

make 10 different kinds of candy