Monday, July 24, 2023

Magical Properties of Peridot

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Monday, July 17, 2023

Review: We'Moon 2024 Datebook

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Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

A couple of years ago I had the fantastic opportunity to be a part of a witch's datebook. I am happy to announce I will be featured in another in 2025 by We'Moon, a woman-owned lunar calendar and handbook on the natural rhythms of Earth that celebrates diversity. But that's over a year away! What about next year? Well, We'Moon just released their 2024 astrological planner which I am here to review today!

Before I jump into the planner itself, I'd like to provide some more information about We'Moon. We'Moon which means "we of the moon," was founded over 40 years ago for women by women. Their planner is specifically designed to amplify women's voices from around the world, creating a safe, inclusive space for all voices. They are dedicated to including diverse perspectives and imagery in their calendars and datebooks, purposely avoiding cultural appropriation and rejecting oppressive cultural norms. They do all of this while celebrating the natural rhythm of the moon and cycles of the year. You can learn more about the company on "What is We'Moon." This has to be one of the best spiritual companies I have run across in quite some time and I am happy to share them with all of you today. On the to the We'Moon 2024: Luminations datebook!

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First of all, their lunar calendars come in a variety of formats, including spiral bound, paperback, loose leaf, and even a Spanish version, ensuring there is something for everyone. They have distributors in Europe, Mexico, Costa Rica, Canada, and the United States to reduce shipping costs, thus providing greater affordable access than other witch planners on the market today. You can find out more about their distributors here. All of their planners are also environmentally friendly and certified as "green" by Co-op America. They print on Hansol Paper, which is 60% recycled content, with solvent-free soy and vegetable-based inks. As such, they are able to save 114 fully grown trees, 45,717 gallons of water, and 8,066 pounds of greenhouse gasses, among other ecological benefits. Nothing speaks to my environmental scientist heart more than a company that takes its environmental impact seriously. It isn't just their products that are environmentally friendly, their packaging is as well. Unfortunately, this led to the first datebook I received for 2023 being damaged, but it was not their fault. My USPS driver decided to place the cardboard mailer on top of my garbage can during a thunderstorm instead of placing it on my covered front porch. Needless to say, my local post office got an ear full as this is not the first time they have done this to me. But anyway. Don't let my experience with USPS deter you from ordering. We'Moon handled it brilliantly and promptly sent me another.

As I mentioned earlier, 2024's astrological planner is called Luminations, which invokes the Waxing Half Moon. Each year, they pick a different moon phase as the theme of their calendar, which I think is so magical. Like many lunar datebooks, this one includes daily astrological data, moon phases, void course moons, and solar changes for each day of the year. It also includes over 100 images and writings from women all over the world, which cover a vast array of spiritual topics from holiday writings, horoscopes, tarot, herbs, and more. The beginning of the planner includes an introduction to how to use it, a sky map for the year, and an introduction to the theme. I love this as not all witches are sure where to start with an astrological planner. I know when I first started, I didn't understand what half the astrological information meant or how to incorporate it into my daily practice. This planner helps clear up some of that confusion, and the poetry, articles, and images throughout provide powerful inspiration to make your life more magical. Like any tool, however, this datebook is only as powerful as the person using it. If you fail to keep up with it, it won't benefit your practice. At the end of the book is a list of all of those that contributed, a guide to astrology, and a month-by-month glance at the moon phases for quick reference. This last bit is one of my favorite aspects of the planner. I love quick visuals rather than being bogged down by other information and know anyone with ADD/ADHD will appreciate this as well.

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I received a spiral-bound version of this datebook, which is fantastic as I can easily flip to the current date and write on a flat surface without having the book fold over on me. As I mentioned before, there are other options available, including a loose-leaf version that you can hole-punch yourself and place in whatever planner case you want. I love that there are multiple options available.

The only downside to this planner is the space available for each day and the lack of blank month-at-a-glance pages. There isn't a whole lot of room to write in information for each day nor is there a place to jot down notes. If you are an extensive notetaker or have a lot on your plate, you may need to pair this with an additional planner instead of relying on it as your only one. The vast amount of information, collaboration, and inspiration found in this datebook more than makeup for these 'flaws.'

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If you are looking for a new astrological, witchy datebook for 2024, I highly encourage you to check out We'Moon's 2024: Lumination datebook, moon calendar, and astrological planner. I know you won't be disappointed! You can order your copy now, before 2024, on their website now and you may even be able to pick it up from one of their distributors! I am super excited to tell you all more about the 2025 calendar when the time comes. Until then, I hope you enjoy their 2024 planner.

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Thursday, July 13, 2023

35 Children's Books About Witchcraft & Paganism

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Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

With witchcraft and paganism on the rise, there is a growing need for witchy children's books. Today I present 35 Witchy Books for Children, covering ages baby to 12 years. These captivating tales open doors to a world of magic, imagination, and empowerment for all ages. Whether your child is curious about spells, potions, or the mystical realm, these 35 books provide engaging stories that inspire creativity, teach valuable lessons, and celebrate the magic within. For ease of access, I have divided the books by age group. While I have not read all of these books, they do come highly recommended by others. With this in mind, be aware that some of these books may contain cultural appropriation, harmful rhetoric, or false information. I think this makes for great learning opportunities for children as it helps teach critical reading and discernment. With that said, let's dive into this captivating collection of witchcraft books that will leave children spellbound with excitement and wonder.

Baby to 5 Years

C is for Coven by Andrea Stein
"C is for Coven is a reinterpretation of a classic alphabet book, matching each letter of the ABCs with a rhyming phrase that teaches kids about witchcraft."

Flora & the First Day of Spring by Kathleen Converse & Hanna Sultanova (ages 2-8 years)
"When Flora's spring equinox is almost ruined by a series of small mistakes, she has to find a way to turn things around and make her own magic. This sweet and simple book includes a series of illustrated spells following the story as well as back matter on spring equinox celebrations."

"Luke & the Longest Night is the second story in Kathleen Converse's Wheel of the Year series, featuring a new main character and a heartwarming Yule story. The second book in Kathleen Converse's Wheel of the Year series, Luke & the Longest Night, features a new cast of friends gathering on the pagan winter celebration of Yule. This heartwarming book includes a series of illustrated spells following the story as well as back matter on winter solstice celebrations."
There is a Samhain book coming soon so keep an eye out of it!

"What Witches Wear is an engaging and colorful exploration of what it means to be a modern witch. Matching each color of the rainbow with a unique witch, What Witches Wear reminds us that witches are everywhere—as our teachers, healthcare workers, artists, librarians, and even next-door neighbors."

"This board book introduces the concept of crystals to young readers and explains how their healing energy can enhance different states of well-being. For babies and their families hoping to amplify positive energy, this little gem of a book provides the answers."

"This board book introduces the concept of Western astrological signs to the youngest readers and highlights related symbols, colors, and personality traits. Babies will learn the basics of how the sun, moon, and stars affect our human lives."

"This board book teaches little ones to clear their minds and relax. Aided by simple text and instructive illustrations, babies will learn meditation step-by-step: how to find a comfortable position, close their eyes, and take deep slow breaths. Share a quiet moment of mindfulness with the child in your life!"

"Inspire babies and toddlers with the wonder of the zodiac! Baby's First Zodiac introduces readers to each of the twelve signs and their very best qualities, from spirited Aries to gentle Pisces. Sweet rhymes and gorgeous art will encourage little ones to explore their own unique traits, interests, and talents, and to learn about the star signs of family members and friends. No matter your sign, Baby's First Zodiac is a delightful reminder [of] all the wonderful things that make you YOU!"

"Help the littlest Tarot readers discover their inner world! As one baby journeys through the day, facing down the many challenges of being a tot, readers will get to know the Tarot deck and the insight and strength that can be drawn from each card. Tarot can be used as a form of meditation--filled with mindful moments and self-reflection, each of the 22 cards in the Major Arcane provide[s] a chance to ground your little one in the moment."

"Song of the Elements explores the natural and magical elements of air, fire, water, earth, and spirit in playful rhyme. For each element, vibrant illustrations introduce correspondences between animals, colors, tarot cards and suits, herbs and flowers, seasons, directions, and more."

"This rhyming book is a cross between traditional nursery rhyme and ritual chant. The overall theme is self-value and recognition of personal blessings and strengths as aligned with the elements."

5-8 years

"Follow along as people around the world gaze upon the phases of the moon in this beautifully illustrated picture book that celebrates our earth and pays homage to the moon, ever-present and comforting."

"This ABC primer is a playful and richly symbolic introduction to the world of Wicca and the magic of Nature. Illustrated poems bring to light the Pagan Path, with each letter featuring a Wee Witch learning about the wheel of the year, tools of the Craft, rites of passage, faerie friends, and meaningful colors. This is a helpful and affirming tool for Pagan families, as well as an appealing collection of subtle, educational light verse for their budding Wee Witches, including A for Acorn, M for Maypole, and S for Spiderweb. Accurate symbols of Witches’ worldview are woven throughout the magical artwork, as well as hidden clues to a secret “Witch Name” revealed at the end of the book."

"Join Brina on an exploration of magical paths like green witchery, kitchen witchcraft, Wicca, and more as she considers the question: Which witch will I be?"

"If you are a person, big or small, who loves the earth and honors all. Mama, What’s a Witch? empowers potential witches with the best kinds of Magick: love and belief in oneself."

"A whimsical children's book that weaves modern witchcraft practices into a story about change and transition. Sunday loves adventures, animals, and the beach where her family has lived since before she was born. She’s also a sea witch, channeling the power of the ocean into elemental spells. But when Sunday’s parents announce a big move and suddenly the one thing that’s always made her feel magical is far away, she’s not feeling much like a witch. To reconnect with her power, she’ll have to remember where her magic really comes from—inside."

"The Tarot Deck Mess: An Introduction to the Major Arcana is a divinatory primer for children. This illustrated picture book uses easy-to-remember poetry, strong affirmations, and kid-friendly design to guide young readers through the Fool’s journey card by card. Acting as both a gentle intro for kids and a helpful reminder for parents, The Tarot Deck Mess creates an opportunity to include your little ones in your tarot practice in a way that’s child-centered and inspirational."

"Inspired to create a book that authentically represents the type of magic practiced by her family and so many others, Andrea and illustrator Cynthia Barrera came together to bring this unique story to life. Illustrated with vibrant, retro artwork and magical details on every page, Casita Brujita gently introduces the natural ways that magic blends into a family's day at home. In this bilingual exploration of modern brujeria for kids ages 3-8, readers move through the rooms of the home as they’re introduced to the different components that make up the rich world of Mexican-American magic, like prayer candles, ancestor altars, herbal healing, and more. As a foundational book for beginner brujas and brujos, Casita Brujita encourages them to begin their magical adventures with a solid understanding of the basics."

"Aiden has a new school and a heavy heart until his mother helps him understand how he can find the magick inside himself, with a little help from the Goddess. In this Wiccan-inspired Pagan children's story, Aiden and his mother explore their new home and discover a deeper connection to each other, the world around them, magick, and the Goddess. This book is dedicated to all the Pagan parents out there in the world who have struggled to explain their beliefs to their tiny Pagans. May you enjoy it, and may it be helpful in passing on your beliefs and understanding of how the world and mystery works. Blessed be."

"Tree Full of Wonder is a vibrant, rhyming, educational and unique picture book showing the unbreakable bond between people and trees. For children ages 3-8. Kids will fall in love with nature and will become Protectors of the Trees. Mindful stories for kids create a brighter and calmer future, one child at a time. Through included, simple information, breathtaking illustrations and worksheets at the end, children will discover: why trees are important and useful to us, what can we do to protect them, and how to recognize common trees."

"This book is about encouraging children’s natural fascination with the forest and its inhabitants. The authors have produced an enchanting book where imagination, story and play bring alive the world of the forest. Full of games, facts, celebrations, craft activities, recipes, foraging, stories and Forest School skills, this is much more than a manual: it is an invitation. The book is organized into the eight Celtic seasons of Imbolc, Spring, Beltane, Summer, Lughnasa, Autumn, Samhain and Winter. Within each chapter are the following sections: The Life of the Forest; Plant Lore; Imaginary Journey; Tree Lore; Activities, crafts and games; Animals; Celebration. The appendices at the end of the book cover woodland skills, safety, the Ogham alphabet, story sources and further resources."

"This whimsical picture book teaches about the energies of the moon’s cycles through poetry and illustrations designed to nurture young children’s imaginations as they discover ways to incorporate honoring the cycle of the moon in Pagan Earth-centered spiritual practice."

"Come honor the Elements with “I Am the Elements!” This whimsical picture book teaches about the themes of each element through poetry and illustrations designed to nurture young children’s imaginations as they discover the significance of Earth, Air, Fire and Water in Pagan Earth-centered spiritual practice."

"This whimsical picture book teaches about the themes of each holiday through poetry and illustrations designed to nurture young children's imaginations as they discover the special days in Pagan Earth-centered spiritual practice."

"Calm your magickal child to sleep with this lunar, bedtime blessing. This rhyming devotion observes the moon’s powers and protections to reassure your sleepy one all through the night. In addition to the moon blessing poem, this book includes two, kid-friendly moonlight meditation activities."

"The Songs of Sabbats series features eight individual short tales that introduce young readers to the eight seasonal pagan sabbats through poetic storytelling and vivid illustrations. Both children and the young-at-heart will set off on a magical journey through the traditions and folklore behind each special holiday. Each book includes a short history of the sabbat, kid-friendly ideas on how to celebrate, a glossary of related terminology, and other enriching activities for young readers, such as vocabulary-building worksheets, writing prompts, and opportunities for artistic expression!"

8-12 years

"An empowering guide for young witches about the kinds of magic they can create for themselves every day. Intended for children between the ages of eight and twelve, who are curious about the possibility of "something more" in their lives, this handbook focuses on three major areas of the witch's life: friendship, personal fulfillment, and family. Each section includes spells, rituals, potions, and other useful information, such as tables about crystals, chakras, and herbs."

"Learn how to read tarot cards and understand what the past, present, and future have to say about your life, especially as it pertains to friendships, family, and school. From Nikki Van De Car, author of The Junior Witch’s Handbook and The Junior Astrologer’s Handbook, this third book in the Junior Handbook series teaches young readers how to use tarot to get answers to questions about life, friendships, family, school, and more. The book offers a step-by-step guide to everything from how to choose a deck to how to do a reading and includes detailed explanations of what each card in a tarot deck represents and how to apply these meanings to your own life. Maybe you need to focus more at school or examine how you've been treating your friends. Perhaps you simply need more love and support from family. Whatever the need, whatever the question, let the cards be a source of wisdom in how to handle anything that comes your way. With beautiful illustrations from Uta Krogmann, this is an empowering guide of self-discovery. Whether reading on your own or with friends, The Junior Tarot Reader's Handbook is the perfect guide for budding mystics."

"Learn how to read your (and your friends') signs and to interpret the zodiac in this beautifully illustrated follow-up to The Junior Witch's Handbook. Harness the power of your signs to navigate friendships, family, and school. Invoking mindfulness, self-care, creativity, and a connection with nature, The Junior Astrologer's Handbook is the perfect guide to teach young readers the art of astrology."

"The Little Witch's Book of Spells is an enchanting compendium of spells, potions, and activities for kids 8 to 12 years old. Young witches-in-training will discover spells to resolve problems, foster friendship, and engage with the natural world. This spellbinding book guides readers on how to craft a magic wand, befriend a fairy, and read tea leaves, as well as glossaries of magical terms and symbols."

"Draw on the unseen forces of the universe with this mindful spell book. Inside you will find everything you need to casts simple spells, including those to build confidence, bring success, give protection to a friend, make a lucky charm and find true love."

"Reveal hidden traits and core truths about your unique self – it’s written in the stars! Discover unique facts about each astrological sign, including constellations, birth stones, elements, ruling planets, as well as more in-depth information about each sign’s characteristics and relationships with others."

"Tracing as far back as the Stone Age, witches have fascinated us for centuries. But were they evil sorceresses determined to seek revenge, or suppressed feminists who were misunderstood? From Egyptian priestesses to Norse healers, take a closer look at witches throughout history and across the world, in this holistic non-fiction book that incorporates poetry, art, mythology, hexes, potions, and magic from different cultures and religions around the world."

"Introduce your Little Witch to the world of magic with this fun and interactive spell book, specially designed for kids ages 4-11. This book includes: Recipes, Crafts, Spells, Nature activities, Coloring pages, and Guided Meditations. Enjoy the activities together as a family, or let your little one get creative and touch in with their own unique magic!"

"From the bestselling author of The Junior Witch's Handbook comes an introduction to the charmed world of magic—featuring enchanted information on crystals, horoscopes, dreams, and more! From sparkly crystals and healing plants to the constellations that move across the night sky, the world is full of magic! In Practical Magic for Kids, author Nikki Van De Car teaches readers ages eight to twelve about the magic all around them. Kids will learn how to interpret their horoscopes, read their friends' palms, decode their dreams, and so much more in this approachable, age-appropriate guide."

This is by no means a complete list of the witchy books out there. There are so many more, including children's books geared to more specific traditions and practices. If there is a book you and your children love that isn't featured here, please drop it in the comment section below! It takes a village and I hope this post will be a valuable resource to new and seasoned parents alike. Now get out there and have a great time raising the next witches, pagans, and more!

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Monday, July 10, 2023

La Petite Apothecary Review

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My pen pal, Angela, recently opened her very own witchy apothecary shop and I couldn't be more thrilled about her new adventure! Of course, I wanted to show support by reviewing some of her products and getting her name out there to all of you. If you liked Apothecary At Home and The Green Witch Co, then you will definitely love La Petite Apothecary!

Angela recently sent me some Velvet Reverie Massage Oil which contains grapeseed oil, frankincense essential oil, and lavender essential oil. Upon first applying the oil, I noticed it has a very light, yet refreshing scent. Unlike other similar products, the scent is not overwhelming, so if you are sensitive to strong smells, this is the oil for you. No scent headaches with this oil! I personally don't enjoy oils with heavy scents, so this is perfect for me. Frankincense improves circulation, thus helping reduce muscle soreness and easing tension. Lavender is naturally calming and anti-inflammatory, helping to alleviate pain related to stress and tension. Grapeseed oil is the perfect base for this massage oil as it not only helps moisturize the skin but also absorbs easily and quickly without leaving you feeling oily. This is definitely my preference when it comes to massage oils. Other natural oils often leave me feeling oily afterward and contribute to acne breakouts. Grapeseed oil, however, is naturally antimicrobial and helps manage acne breakouts, reducing the risk of breakouts after use. This combination of grapeseed oil, frankincense, and lavender is the perfect combination for a massage oil and I couldn't be happier with the product.

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I work out 4-5 times a week, doing a combination of cardio and strength training. Furthermore, I am a very anxious person. Needless to say, I carry a lot of muscle tension and soreness in my shoulders and neck, sometimes from working out, sometimes from being anxious, and sometimes it's a combination of both. I often ask my partner to rub my neck and shoulders while we watch TV, and this massage oil has come in clutch the past week. It is an oil, so a little bit goes a long way. It warms quickly so I'm not shocked when it first touches my back, absorbs well, and leaves my muscles feeling like butter. I have also used it on my arms and legs to assuage the soreness I feel there and it's left my skin feeling soft and radiant. Even if you aren't into massages, this makes for a great after-bath/shower moisturizer, especially before bed. For just $25 you get enough massage oil to last you several months, if not a year, making it well worth the purchase.

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Angela also kindly sent along a sample of her handcrafted Sleepy Time Tea, which contains chamomile, lemon balm, catnip, oat straw, passion flower, hop flower, and valerian root. Each of these herbs is well known to reduce stress, enhance relaxation, and promote restful sleep. It has a light floral flavor and combines well with a splash of milk. It's naturally sweet, but I find it's even better with a dash of sugar or honey to enhance the flavor. Not to worry, sugar/honey doesn't actually disrupt sleep and doesn't make you hyper, contrary to popular belief.

On top of all of this, the products came packaged in biodegradable packaging! I love this and wish more businesses would turn to natural, biodegradable packaging. As a witch, I believe in reducing my ecological footprint as much as possible in this capitalist hellscape. I find this to be an act of worship for the Earth and the nature spirits around us. But I digress!

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If massage oil and tea aren't your thing, La Petite Apothecary offers a host of other wonderful herbal products to choose from, including balms for bruises, achy joints, bug bites, burns, cuts, and even poison ivy, as well as eczema cream, bug repellants, and vapor rub. If you use the link I have provided, you will receive 10% off your order from La Petite Apothecary, courtesy of Angela herself. I know you will not be disappointed by her products.

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Thursday, July 6, 2023

Magical and Medicinal Properties of Blueberry

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Gender: Feminine
Planet: Venus
Element: Water
Powers: Abundance, Health, Luck, Money, Prosperity, Protection, Treachery
Magical Uses and History: Blueberries, native to North America, and bilberries, native to Europe, are members of the Vaccinium family and are known for their vibrant blue color. Blueberries tend to grow in clusters while bilberries grow alone or in pairs. Despite their differences, both have similar correspondences, hence their dual inclusion in this herbarium post.

According to Greek mythology, the blueberry/bilberry was the result of Myrtillus, Hermes' son, being turned into a berry bush. According to the legend, Oenomaus, King of Pisa and son of Ares, was told that he would be killed by his son-in-law. To prevent this, Oenomaus decided to challenge all of his daughter's suitors to a chariot race, a challenge he knew no one could win because his chariot was pulled by horses gifted to him by Ares. Oenomaus managed to stave off 18 suitors in this way before Pelops was able to best him. Pelops, knowing he couldn't beat Oenomaus, bribed Oenomaus' personal attendant, Myrtillus, to replace the linchpin's in his master's chariot with beeswax by offering him the chance to spend a night with his future wife, Hippodamia. When the race began, the wheels of Oenomaus' chariot fell off and he was dragged by his horses to death. With his dying breath, he tasked Pelops with avenging his death. Depending on the myth, one of two things happened after this. Some sources say Pelops immediately took action, killing Myrtillus and casting his body into the sea to avoid Myrtillus claiming his 'prize.' Other sources say Pelops, Myrtillus, and Hippodamia fled the city and during their trek, Myrtillus attempted to lie with Hippodamia, resulting in Pelops killing him and tossing him into the ocean. With this dying breath, Myrtillus cursed Pelops and his descendants and when his body washed to shore, Hermes, turned him into a blueberry bush. It's from this myth that the bilberry gets its scientific name, Vaccinium myrtillus, and its association with treachery in Victorian flower language. As such, blueberries can be used in spells related to treachery, such as finding a traitor, or for protection against treachery and ill will. Blueberry leaves and dried berries can be placed under a doormat or hung near an entrance to prevent evil, ill will, and undesirable people and entities from entering your home. String the dried berries onto a cord to create a protection talisman or charm or grind them up and combine with salt to create a potent protection powder that can be sprinkled around your home. Use crushed blueberries to draw protection sigils on yourself or paper. Blueberries can also be baked into pies, tarts, and other dishes, used in tea, or eaten fresh to protect against psychic attacks.

In the Americas, indigenous folklore says the Great Spirit sent the 'star berry,' so named for its star-shaped blossom, to relieve hunger during a famine. Blueberries keep longer than similar berries and are easy to dry, making them a staple winter food. It's believed blueberries were given to the European colonizers to help them through their first winter in North America and soon became a staple among the colonizer's diet. In Europe, the blueberry was often harvested right before Lammas, a festival of abundance and cultivation, and incorporated into Lammas celebration feasts. As such, blueberries are associated with abundance, prosperity, money, health, and luck and can be used in spells for such matters. Keep dried blueberries on hand to make sure you and yours never go without, place on your Lammas altar to honor the season, consume blueberries to promote health and wellness, add dried blueberries to abundance and money spells, or used blueberry powder to dress candles for prosperity magic.

Blueberry can be used in a number of spells including:
    Protection Magic
    Money Spells
    Luck Magic
    Healing Spells

Medicinal Uses: Blueberries are rich in anthocyanins and vitamin C, helping to protect against heart disease and cancer, reducing inflammation, and strengthening cell membranes. They are also rich in iron, phosphorous, calcium, and vitamin K, helping promote bone strength, growth, and regeneration. Much like the berries, blueberry leaves are also rich in antioxidants, including anthocyanins and procyanidins, and chlorogenic acid, which are naturally anti-inflammatory, cardioprotective, and neuroprotective, meaning they can be used to treat mild depression and anxiety, improve memory, and promote blood circulation.

Preparation and Dosage: To create an infusion, combine 1 tablespoon of dried blueberry leaves with 1 cup of boiling water. Allow the mixture to infuse for 10-15 minutes. Drink up to three times a day. Drinking more than 3 cups could result in nausea and diarrhea. As a tincture, take 1-2 milliliters per day. Externally, the infusion can be used as a hair wash to promote healthy hair growth. Blueberry leaves can also be used to create a poultice that is applied directly to minor cuts, skin infections, or bites to reduce inflammation.

Want to print a copy of this for your Book of Shadows? Click below for your free copy! 
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Monday, July 3, 2023

Book Review: The Magic of the Otherworld by Morpheus Ravenna

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Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Man, this has been a year for books. It's not often that I am super excited to share a review with you all, but I am certainly excited this time. The Magic of the Otherworld: Modern Sorcery from the Wellspring of Celtic Traditions by Morpheus Ravenna (sí/hír) is a comprehensive guide to modern Celtic magic based on folklore, historical documents, mythological texts, and hír experiences as a practicing witch. Drawing upon ancient Celtic traditions, Ravenna provides the groundwork for a modern Celtic practice rooted in animism, polytheism, and the Otherworld. As a hedge witch, I found this book to be the next step for those interested in Celtic traditions and spirit work, as much of what is covered in this book is paramount to my current practice, which I am building by combining Celtic and Norse traditions (to honor my ancestors on both sides of my family tree).

The Magic of the Otherworld is broken down into nine chapters and an introduction. While I know some people may wish to skip over an introduction and dive right into the material, I do not suggest that here. Ravenna lays the groundwork in the introduction, introducing the reader to core magical Celtic concepts, such as cóir, the Celtic concept of "rightness, order, or justice," and cultural appropriation versus appreciation, as well as introducing how the content in the book will be approached. Ravenna's approach to magical ethics within the Celtic framework cannot be overlooked or skipped and is honestly a breath of fresh air compared to more modern Wiccan takes and the Three Fold Law. From the introduction, the reader is introduced to a variety of magical topics, including purification, protection magic, spirit work, poetic sorcery, divination, sigils, necromancy, ancestor work, binding, cursing, and conflict magic. 

Ravenna takes a very academic approach to Celtic magic throughout the book, which I found refreshing. Each chapter contains a breakdown of the mythological texts, folklore, and archeological evidence to support the different Celtic magical practices outlined in the book. These are supported with ample citations, expert opinions, and thorough analysis, allowing the reader to fully understand the historical context and precedent for the magic. I am so appreciative of this, as I am personally trying to connect more with the magic and practices of my ancestors. This historical context and analysis help put the magic into perspective for me and truly honor the practices of my ancestors in a modern way. Despite this academic approach, the text is inviting and conversational. At no point did I find myself struggling to read a passage or bored. Ravenna also includes "Sorcerer's Tool Kit" and "Story" sections in each chapter which offer the reader modern applications of ancient Celtic magic. In the "Sorcerer's Tool Kit," sí provides practical spells, rituals, and recipes to begin practicing what is discussed in each chapter. These are just frameworks, and Ravenna encourages the reader to build on these outlines and make them their own. These spells, rituals, and recipes are usually followed by a "Story" where sí discusses how sí has used these practices in hír own life. These stories provide an excellent example of what the magic can look like, which I always appreciate. Understanding what a spell can look like helps me visualize its purpose, come up with new ideas, and make the spells and rituals my own.

Ravanna is quick to say in the closing that sí has only scratched the surface of Celtic magic in this book, focusing more on the magic sí practices often and is most familiar with. This means that fertility, family, hearth, and abundance magics are left untouched. Honestly, I was okay with this. There is so much information packed into this book alone that it's impossible to discuss it all here, let alone quickly integrate it into one's practice. This is a book I will keep coming back to and I hope Ravenna expands on it by writing another book addressing the 'missing' topics. I love hír approach to constructing modern practices using historical texts, magical ethics, sigil creation, animism, consent, trance, spirit work, and so much more. Honestly, if you are a hedge witch and you don't pick up this book, you are missing out. The trance and spirit work alone is worth reading.

I have absolutely nothing negative to say other than there were times the book was repetitive, but this is only because Ravenna wrote the book so that it could be read out of sequence. Sí does not suggest this, and neither do I, as the concepts within the book build upon each other. You don't want to try cursing magic without first understanding how to properly protect yourself.

The Magic of the Otherworld: Modern Sorcery from the Wellspring of Celtic Traditions by Morpheus Ravenna is set to release July 8th, and is a must-read, especially for hedge witches and those interested in Celtic magic. I am so thankful I was given the opportunity to read and review this book, and can't wait to get my hands on a physical copy. As I said, this is a book I will keep coming back to. I kept highlighting passage after passage on my Kindle and knew immediately that I needed to have a physical copy to highlight, write notes, and add tabs to. I know this is a book I will forever reference and you likely will too. You can pre-order your copy now wherever books are sold.

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