Summer Solstice oracle reading

I recently started a blog for weekly & monthly oracle readings, and ones for the New and Full Moons. It’s my own ‘style’ of reading, which won’t be for everyone, but I’m enjoying opening up to an old love in a new way. I tend to focus on personal growth, self-care and encouragement of individuality, so if you’re interested in these kinds of things you might like to take a look. If not that’s fine too!

It’s a new thing for me to share openly but it’s not new to me. It’s something I’ve loved doing since I bought my first set of cards around 12 years ago. I spent around four years in a spiritual development group where, amongst other things, we would practice card readings for each other. Unfortunately the group disbanded, and as my health deteriorated I wasn’t able to try out any others.
The last year I’ve been working with my various cards more and more, and earlier this year I kept feeling the urge to do weekly readings. I pushed it away but finally I couldn’t ignore it any longer and I set up a blog.

I may be changing the name in the near future. As I build up confidence I’m starting to be more open about parts of myself I’ve hidden away. This is one small part of the process of reclaiming my Self.

Anyway, here is my Summer Solstice reading: https://thepenguinstidepool.wordpress.com/2018/06/20/solstice-oracle-reading-for-21st-june-2018/

Wishing you well for the Solstice,
Michelle

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Roses for Sigyn

Occasionally I will pick flowers and leave them out for Sigyn. At the moment one of our Roses has lovely peachy-pink blooms, so I decided to pick a couple and gift them to Her. I associate Roses with Sigyn because they’re linked to the heart and the heart chakra. Being a Goddess of immense compassion and love this symbolism seems very apt. The colours of these Roses speaks very much to that softness in Sigyn, balanced with the compassion and deep love… but Roses also have thorns, and as with others who know this Goddess, I have seen a side to Her that is fiercely protective.

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The day after I picked and presented them to Her the Roses started to wilt. I put them in a mesh tray in the airing cupboard so I can dry the petals for magical use.

(c) Michelle G, Northern Tamarisk, 2018

Minimalist, Small-space & Travel Altar Ideas – 02

Not everyone has space for a large altar setup, and if you have to share the space with others, if you’re visiting (or have visitors), or if you’re on the move, having an elaborate setup isn’t always possible. In this series I’m going to be sharing little ideas and photos to inspire you for your own devotional space. Use them as general inspiration, adapting them to suit your needs, the items you own, and your Deities.

They’re highly portable, and you can put them in a pouch for when you’re on the move. If you have guests they shouldn’t freak them out too much, or you can quickly put them away for the duration of their visit. If you’re away from home they’re easy to pop into a draw while you’re not using the room.

This week I’m talking about jewellery. Pendants and brooches are multi-purpose, and can be used as decorative items as well as worn. Pick pieces rich in the symbolism associated with a particular Deity or pantheon. This ties in the personal aspect, and means that even if you don’t have much space for your altar, or it needs to be discreet, then you can still have a powerful energy present.

There are plenty of options with jewellery as to how you can use them. You can wear them and few will guess they’re a devotional piece. You can hang them from a hook, a pole, a picture rail or on a Deity statue. You can turn them into a little display. You can turn them into a keyring. They’re easy to pop onto a nightstand at a hotel or guest bedroom, and in the morning you’ll be wearing them again.

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With brooches you can be a bit more creative. As well as wearing them you can attach them to things you can’t with other pieces of jewellery. Want to encourage dreams of said Deity? Attach the brooch to your pillow. Want to be sneaky or playful? Add a brooch dedicated to Khepera (or another insect or ‘climbing’ Deity) to your curtains. You can also pin them to bags, scarves, cloaks, coats or wall hangings. Because of the pin on the back you may be able to add them as a detachable element on the end of prayer beads.

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(c) Michelle G, Northern Tamarisk, 2018

Minimalist, Small-space & Travel Altar Ideas – 01

This is part of a new series I’ll be sharing on alternate Tuesdays for the next couple of months. Not everyone has space for a large altar setup, and if you have to share the space with others, if you’re visiting (or have visitors), or if you’re on the move, having an elaborate setup isn’t always possible. In this series I’m going to be sharing little ideas and photos to inspire you for your own devotional space. Use them as general inspiration, adapting them to suit your needs, the items you own, and your Deities.

They’re highly portable, and you can put them in a pouch for when you’re on the move. If you have guests they shouldn’t freak them out too much, or you can quickly put them away for the duration of their visit. If you’re away from home they’re easy to pop into a draw while you’re not using the room.

First off I’m starting with one that’s super-simple and multi-functional – prayer beads. You can buy lots of lovely sets of prayer beads now, or you can make your own. Not only do they act as devotional tools, but they can be made into different shapes and act as a simple but effective mini altar setup. They also look nice, catch the light, and you can even wrap them around your wrist like a bracelet if you want to.

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(The prayer beads pictured are all made by me and are my personal sets. I have an Etsy shop and will be making up more prayer beads in the coming months.)

(c) Michelle G, Northern Tamarisk, 2018

Individual Practice

I am very much in support of a practice that caters to a person’s individuality. While tradition has its place it can, at times, place constraints on how people practice, and how they approach and work with Deities. Part of my aim here is to encourage people to discover individual levels of practice, and to provide ideas for different ways to connect. It’s something I’ve been doing since the beginning, though I didn’t realise it until very recently. It is something I believe in strongly, and while I respect traditional practitioners, there is more encouragement needed for people on non-traditional pathways.

Our connection to Deity and/or Spirit is unique, and that can often be downplayed. I’ve seen more being written about what constitutes ‘right practice’, but ultimately I believe in doing what is right for you and the way the Gods/Spirits work with you as the person you are. Your gifts, talents and strengths are unique to you, and your work and connection with Deity will reflect that.

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Devotional Tip: reminders

If you have a chronic illness that affects the memory, or even if you’re a busy person who gets caught up in other things easily, a little reminder can be a valuable tool for devotions. It’s not that devotions and our Deities aren’t important to us, but sometimes the mind (or memory) just doesn’t cooperate.

As a way to help myself I have made a little sign to leave out for Saturdays or Sundays – my usual offerings days – and other times I know I want to do special prayers and offerings, or to give thanks.

(c) Michelle G, Northern Tamarisk, 2018

Equinox 2018 poem

Happy Equinox, everyone. May Winter’s pall make way for Spring’s more inviting shawl.

As it looked through the haze
The Sun saw it then;
The seed was a seed no more,
But with Spring’s eyes
It had shed its disguise
And was coming at last
Into bloom.
Out at last
From Winter’s gloom.

(c) Michelle G, Northern Tamarisk, 2018

Shrine for a beloved pet

My beloved Orlando passed away five years ago and there’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think of him. He was a beautiful soul, full of character, and when I became ill at 17 he became my rock. We became so much closer after that, and he pretty much devoted himself to my care. Whenever he was in the house he would come to spend time with me, whether in my room or on my bed. We had a special bond that I will never forget and I like to honour that.

Although he appears in my Ancestor shrine I wanted to create something a little more personal. Where we are currently has wide windowsills, and since Orlando used to love gazing out of my bedroom window at the world below I thought it a fitting place for a shrine for him. I bought the ornament a long time ago because it looked like him, and so I decided to get it out again (it had been packed away) and place it with two of my photos. In January mum let me become custodian of Orlando’s ashes, so I placed them with the photos and ornament and now the shrine feels more complete. I am also thinking of making some memorial prayer beads, with a bead for each year of his life.

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Creating a shrine for beloved pets is a really lovely way to honour them and their place in your life. I thoroughly recommend it.

(c) Michelle G, Northern Tamarisk, 2018