Prompt for December 6 | Project Reverb

Blowing Out the Candles: You’re another year older!  How did you celebrate the passage of another year?  Did it turn out the way you had hoped?

via Prompt for December 6 | Project Reverb.

As it happens, I’m not another year older yet. I’m not rushing to be 49 a day before I officially get there.

I’ve got a bottle of caramel whiskey which I found during a trip to Sudbury earlier this year. (My nephew, Zack, is attending university and living up there now). I’m going to enjoy a couple of shots of that and have a day of doing whatever comes along.

As it turns out, my birthday is also the day a friend of Zack’s is arriving here from the US. So I will have company at some point.

If things were different…. I would have loved to take off on the VIA Rail train for at least a month. It would be lovely to travel again. I’d even stay at a couple of hotels rather than skimping on pennies and staying at hostels all the way. There is something nice about waking up alone in a hotel on nice, crisp sheets. The day feels so fresh and untouched when you are in a different place, physically and mentally.

Prompt for December 5 | Project Reverb

Challenge: Did you take on a new challenge?  What was it?  Is there are challenge you deliberately avoided?  What do you want to do to challenge yourself in 2014?

via Prompt for December 5 | Project Reverb.

I took up the challenge of making more ASCII art. I have finished a couple of smaller projects, one for a print magazine which didn’t pay after offering $100. Disappointing about the money, more because I would have been a paid ASCII artist, a rare thing.

Next up is creating ASCII art backgrounds for a game. I had planned to have more done, but I’ve at least started. It’s due January sometime.

I need some new challenges. I’ve nearly abandoned most of my sites, even those I really care about and have great ideas for. I need to find new life for them. Hopefully I’ll come up with something that works for me again.

How I Chose to be a Pagan Earth Witch

When I was about 20 I decided to look into religions. I knew the traditional Christian ways were not for me. I didn’t like they way these religions viewed women. I had just read a book where the women were put into isolation after having their period or giving birth, they were “unclean”. This was on top of growing up with the Adam and Eve mythology. From that point the Bible (written and rewritten by men) just goes on to look down on women, and worse. If I were a male, I would probably never have become Pagan. I would never have begun researching other religions and beliefs and looked deeper than the surface. Most likely I would have put religion behind me as not being all that important.

My Early Pagan Experience

I started with Witchcraft and Wicca because I found a book written in the 70’s. It’s a book I wouldn’t choose to read now but parts of it were enough to send me looking for more information from more reliable sources. I found a Pagan bookstore referred to in a book. I made the hour long bus trip to downtown Toronto and found the place. Entering for that first time was not easy. I felt daring and yet I also felt I was walking into a place I didn’t fully belong and might not be welcome. I wondered if they could see inside of me, my mind and my thoughts. Would they know what I was thinking, could they see my future and my past, my aura…? That was creepy.

The first thing that really happened was the smell. Ever since then I have noticed the same smell, strongly of incense over time, in every Pagan bookstore. I like pulling out a book I bought in a Pagan store. Even a couple of decades later I can smell it in the pages. If the smell ever goes away I don’t know. So far it hasn’t.

My adventure in that first Pagan store was intimidating. If I were less determined or less curious I doubt I would have tried another Pagan store. The people there did watch me and yet said nothing. Maybe they thought I was going to walk off with something, maybe they were just curious too, I won’t know and I didn’t ask then. I was already the shy type. I bought a book and a couple of polished rocks and I left, glad to be out of there. I was left with the feeling of not belonging and I never did go back to that store. Luckily there were others and more came along later.

Finding Where and How I Fit In

A few years more and the Internet came along too. By that time I was making my own decisions about what I believed and how I believed it. I didn’t accept Wicca as it came. I took what felt right to me and put it together with how I felt about the world and it’s people. I still believe this way; I’m very much an eclectic solitary type of Pagan. I gave myself the label of Earth Witch and I’ve stuck with that, to keep the explanation simple. To me an Earth Witch means I focus on the Earth, the natural and I don’t feel influenced by deities or magick. I believe we each create our own magick from ourselves and it is up to each of us to choose how to use it, or not use it.

I have written about my Pagan beliefs before but not shared much of my actual experience. I used to get email from young women who wanted to know more about being Pagan. The main thing they wanted to know was how to hide it from their parents. I was never behind this. For one thing, if you have to hide it, maybe you should rethink the whole thing.

I do understand that some families are very Christian and close minded or even afraid of Pagan ideas and Pagan ways. If that is the case and you are living at home, this is not the time for you to explore being Pagan. Wait until you can do it openly. In the meantime, there is no reason you can’t do simple things like have a collection of rocks, maybe some shells and feathers, keep a journal about your observations of nature, history and people. These are things you can do without upsetting your parents and family. You can be Pagan without having to prove you’re Pagan. Know it yourself and start there.

Nowadays…

For me, being Pagan is a personal thing. I mainly keep it to myself. I’ve found a local group with weekly meetings but I have yet to venture out and attend one. I think I will. Each time I have stepped out and met other Pagans I have enjoyed the experience and learned new things about history, religion and beliefs. But, I’m comfortable with what I believe now, the way my feelings about being an Earth Witch have evolved. So I’m not as eager to stir myself up as I was when I was younger and just starting to explore and discover.

To the Canadian Media: Canadian TV First

Canadian TV FirstAlthough the site which generated this link is about SunMedia in particular, I would like to see more Canadian TV in general. All the TV channels, the entertainers and media should be Canadian on Canadian TV. It should be the odd time we see US entertainment, not the everyday. This is only aggravated at this time of year when we have the US Oscars shoved down our throat. In the Canadian newspapers, the Canadian magazines, the Canadian news – every facet of the Canadian media online and offline is focused on yapping about the US award show. I’m sick of it long before the thing ever shows up on the actual night it airs.

I am Canadian. So why is it I know names of US entertainers I have never even seen in a movie or TV show and yet I do not know the name of the actor I watched in a Canadian movie last night? Without waiting for the credits, I did not know the name of this man who I have watched in several movies and TV shows over the years. If this were a US entertainer I’d know his name and a lot more.

Why does the Canadian media play into promoting US entertainers and media over our very own entertainers and media? Why can’t Canadians have Canadian TV?

I took this photo (below) this morning. This is the local Barrie, Ontario newspaper. The Entertainment section is just two pages. Other than a couple of ads for local movie theatres (showing US movies, of course) the only content on those two pages is about the US Oscars and entertainers. As a Canadian reading this newspaper I was annoyed to see the US media given two pages and no Canadian content at all. Pick up a local US newspaper and see if you can find a mention of the Canadian media, at all. Likely not.

No Canadian Content

Maybe I'm a Bully Bitch

I’ve had a lot of customer service type jobs. I’m good at that, not the sales part, but the actual people part. I don’t even mind the grumpy or angry people. It’s those people who never acknowledge you, never look at you, that bothered me.

Funny, the angry people would just make me feel stubborn and I’d only give them the bare minimum of service or discounts, etc. Most of the other customer service people would cave in and give the angry, shouting people whatever they wanted. That annoys me, to reward someone for acting like a bully.

Some of the worst people would deliberately line up at the youngest cashier’s stand and then start in on her. They had some of those girls in tears. I saved a couple when I could. Usually I couldn’t just abandon people waiting in my line.

Maybe I’m a bully bitch. I did like sorting them out when I got the chance. People I work with are always surprised. I like surprising people now and then.

New Mousepad


I’m not a big online shopper. I can easily count the purchases I’ve made on one hand. If you don’t count a couple of ebooks, there are exactly two things I have bought online. Tonight I decided to get this mousepad. I like it cause it is about St. Patrick’s Day, coffee and I do need a new mousepad.

I’ve been putting off getting a new one for a couple of years. The one I have now was from my ex-husband. It’s a yellow smiley face. But, it’s been shedding the backing for a few years until it’s kind of bald around the edges (on the back). Sometimes my hand gets a bit numb from resting on it when I’m using the mouse awhile. So, it’s time for it to be retired.

I really need to put up a corkboard or something like that. I get bits of things I’m working on cluttered all over and lose track of things as they get buried. So, it is a sensible idea. I can also put old smiley up on it, give him a featured corner. You can’t keep a good smiley down.