Gwenerrella’s Larv-Egg Greenies Recipe

Posted in Everday Living, Family History, Gwenerella, Misspent Youth, Munchable Memories, Playin' with my PSP XI with tags , , , , on 05/10/2010 by gwenguin1



A lot of you already know our Gwenerrella, and her often un-childlike thought processes.  She also does not have a child’s taste in food as evidenced by some of her favourites.  She loves V-8 juice hot with cheese, Ginger Beer floats, and Dolmas.  Her mother doesn’t like the Dolmas, claiming they look like gory maggots; which only delights Gwenerrella and made her like them even more.  She now refers to them as her ‘Larv-Egg Greenies’ and delights in grossing out her entire family.  Her brothers are thrilled when she can divert their father’s anger by playing ‘see-food’ with her ‘Larv-Egg Greenies’.  ‘See-Food’ is nothing more than talking with your mouth full; in this case it is Grape leaves and rice filling.

We, Gwenerrella and myself, would love to hear of your gross-out recipes.  Whether it be edible faux vomit for a Halloween Party, or a disgusting dessert we would love to hear of your faves.

Gwenerrella’s Larv-Egg Greenies


Okay everbuddy!!  If ya don’ts lissen I can’t tell you how ta make my Larv-Egg Greenies!!

Ya need –

Slimey green leaves- lotsadem

Dried up larv-eggs- 2 liddle glass cup fulls

Evil Lemon Juice-too many squirts

Oil from da French fryer

Water from da hose

Leaves from da garden- two kinds

A Grody Grunion

Bird juice



Put da larv-eggs inna pan wif da garden leaves, chopped-up grunion, lemon juice. Cook dem for one cartoon an’ den, turn the fire to a liddle blue line and put in haffa de bird juice, finda top fer de pan.  Let the larv-egg stuffin’s cook for a whole cartoon show.

Get a good diggin’ spoon, and put one a’ dose full on every one a dem slimey leaves; wrap ‘em up like a liddle blurrito.  Put all a’ dem back inna pan real close togedder, so they can’t get their backs apart.



Put the rest a da Evil Lemon Juice, an’ da bird juice on top a’ da Larv-Egg Greenies.  Put ‘em onna stove with the liddle blue line o fire and cook for a whole grown-up show.



For those of you that would like the grown-up version of that recipe, I included that below:

Traditional Greek Dolmas


Prep Time:
40 Min
Cook Time:
1 Hr
Ready In:
1 Hr 40 Min

Servings  (Help)

US Metric Calculate

Original Recipe Yield 12 servings


  • 2 cups uncooked long-grain white rice
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh dill
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh mint leaves
  • 2 quarts chicken broth
  • 3/4 cup fresh lemon juice, divided
  • 60 grape leaves, drained and rinsed
  • hot water as needed
  • 1 cup olive oil


1.       In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, sauté the rice, onion, dill, and mint for about 5 minutes, or until onion is soft. Pour in 1 quart of broth, reduce heat to low and simmer for another 10 to 15 minutes, or until rice is almost cooked. Stir in 1/2 of lemon juice and remove from heat.

2.       Take one leaf, shiny side down, and place 1 teaspoon of the rice mixture at the bottom (stem) end of the leaf. Fold both sides of the leaf towards the centre, roll up from the broad bottom to the top, and place into a 4-quart pot. Repeat with all leaves, leaving no gaps as leaves are placed in pot (to prevent from opening while cooking). Sprinkle with remaining lemon juice and with olive oil.

3.       Pour chicken broth over all to cover grape leaves. Cover pot and simmer for about 1 hour (do not boil, because this will make the stuffing burst out of the leaves). Remove from heat, remove cover and let cool for 1/2 hour. Transfer to serving dish and serve.




  • If using fresh grape leaves, plunge into a deep container of very hot water for about 10 seconds, to soften (don’t let the leaves lose their fresh green colour).

Halloween Fever

Posted in Doodle-a-day-oh!, Everday Living, Playin' with my PSP XI, Scaddy Kiddies, Soul Food Cafe Fun, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , , , on 03/10/2010 by gwenguin1

I’ve got Halloween Fever, and I’ve got it bad!!

Need I say more???

Six Word Stories’ Halloween Story

Posted in Blogging Memes, Everday Living, Poetry, Scaddy Kiddies, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , , , , on 29/09/2010 by gwenguin1

It is time to get geared up for Halloween.  Shiloh and I started with a batch of our six-word stories, on a seasonal theme.  Below are the 13 I wrote, the ones I got my Mum to write, and the link to Shiloh’s posted on her blog.


Kiss a frog?  I’ll get warts!

Dancing shadows can excite the imagination.

Looming shadow groans.  Is it Frankenstein?

Stalking the prey.  Carefully placed footsteps.

A gleam of fangs.  Vampyre’s kiss.

To do list- tune up broom.

Blood of flitter-mouse goes in cauldron.

Harvest mandrake root for serious magic.

Tiny princess runs from bogeyman brother.

Trick or treat shout costumed children.

Goblin wants my candy.  Must run! 

Goodie bag stretches, too much candy.

One more story before bed kids.

After I had these 13 I thought of another-

Too much candy?  Take this medicine.

Mum’s are:

Zombies attack.  Flee, flee!  Too late.

Black Cats.  HIgh fence.  Night music.

In her hair, Bat’s beware- Batmobile!

Vampire Picnic.  Midnite tonight.  Blood Bank.

Conjure sleep.  Count spiders, not sheep.

You can find Shiloh’s at:

Read ‘Em and Weep??

Posted in Blogging Memes, Call Me The Seeker, Everday Living, Hestia's Hearth, It's In The Cards, My Inspirations, Photo Phun, Tarot Journey with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 23/09/2010 by gwenguin1

I couldn’t help myself, I had to buy the Stepahnie Pui-Mun Law’s “Shadowscapes” Tarot Deck.  It finally arrived Tuesday evening.  I had to try them out, and decided to video the entire layout

The vidoe comes with a challenge for everyone doing the Tarot Journey.  I have included close-ups of all the cards in the layout, and the measnings of each psotion in the layout.

My challenge is for anyone that is unterested, to read and interpret the layout I have shared.  My question was, “What is going to happen in the next year”.

You can find the video at:

Snake Oil Saleswoman?

Posted in Call Me The Seeker, Critter Tails, Everday Living, Munchable Memories, Soul Food Cafe Fun, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , on 29/06/2010 by gwenguin1


Snake Oil


comes from the 19th-century American practice of selling cure-all elixirs in traveling medicine shows. Snake oil salesmen would falsely claim that the potions would cure any ailments. now-a-days it refers to fake products.

“why did you buy that snake oil? it does absolutely nothing!”


Medicine or therapy that doesn’t work.

Most of the stuff sold at health food stores are snake oil products.


any dubious or fraudulent remedy or cure (The route of the fraud the word is derived from resulted from a misunderstanding of a traditional Chinese joint and muscle painkiller derived from the skin of the Chinese water snake)

That snake oil is so obvious. When will people learn?

con faker snake-oil snake oil salesman snakeoil

A woman that likes to cause mischief and sexual deviance

Stay away from her, shes a real snake oil girl

jezebel jade trollop vamp wench




Steve Earle Snake Oil Lyrics

Ladies and gentlemen, attention please
Come in close so everyone can see
I got a tale to tell
A listen don’t cost a dime
And if you believe that we’re gonna get along just fine

Now I’ve been travelin’ all around
I heard trouble’s come to your town
Well I’ve got a little somethin’
Guaranteed to ease your mind
It’s call Snake Oil y’all
It’s been around for a long, long time

Say, your crops’ll burn if it don’t rain soon
Ain’t seen a drop since the tenth of June
Well I can open up the sky
People never fear
If you ain’t impressed yet, just tell me what you wanna hear

Well you lost your farm so you moved to town
You get a job, they shut the factory down
Now you sit around all day long feelin’ sad and blue
You need Snake Oil y’all, tell you what I’m gonna do

I can heal the sick, I can mend the lame
And the blind shall see again, it’s all the same

Well ain’t your President good to you
Knocked ’em dead in Libya, Grenada too
Now he’s taking his show a little further down the line
Well, ‘tween me and him people, you’re gonna get along just fine


Those of you that have known me for more than a few month know my abiding interest in ‘Alternative Medicine’ .  My family has come to love and accept that part of me, so much so, that they will choose my herbals over prescription medications for pain relief.  My brother Matt, has taken to calling my Bay Leaf Massage Oil ‘Snake Oil’.  Bay Leaf Oil is good for so much more than sore muscles, it kicks migraines right out of my head, soothes allergies, and you can use it (from a seperate bottle of course) to braise a beef roast before popping it in the Crock=Pot to simmer all day.

Both my Mum and brother Matt ask for that oil frequently, and when I say I can make them up a small bottle to use when they need it, they both say, “It only works when you do it!”

I also keep a tiny spray bottle of Bay Leaf oil handy for our cats, I use that instead of a poison treatment for ear mites.  It washes all of the ear mites out of their ears, and it isn’t dangerous to the cats’ health, in fact, it helps them pass hairballs easily.

Another way to use the bay leaf oil is to soak it into the wood of cupboards and drawers, bay leaf oil is an amazing insect repellant, and is safe for food, kids and pets.

 Mum, in particular, appreciates it enough to spring for the oil and herbs to make my different oils.  She especially appreciates the Sage Oil I make for her psoriasis, and the Arthritis Oil of Bay Leaf and Chillie Peppers.


The marvellous thing about these herbals is how easy they are to make and use.  All you do is take a quart bottle of extra-virgin olive oil, add 12-18 large Bay Leaves (Laurus nobilis), and sit the jar or bottle on a sunny windowsill for 4-6 weeks.  Be sure to label the bottle without covering up the sides.  It is safest to use both the common and scientific name when labelling herbals; the common name may change from region to region, but the scientific name remains the same all over the world.


Let’s All Drink from the Ace of Cups

Posted in Blogging Memes, Bookworm Tales, Hestia's Hearth, It's In The Cards, Poetry, Quotents, Soul Food Cafe Fun, Tarot Journey with tags , , , , , , on 29/06/2010 by gwenguin1

The Ace of Cups

For Heather

In my favourite deck

(The Thoth-Crowley Deck)

The Ace of Cups rises from a

Fully open white lotus blossom,

Which is the symbol of

Love of a giving nature. 

It is the feminine counterpart of

The Ace of Wands;

Open, receptive, surrendering;

Bearing the transformatory

Power of giving love.

The key words are overflowing love,

Emotional clarity,

Deep love of the self,

Giving and receiving.

The giving of love happens effortlessly. 

That which continually flows into us from

The boundless abundance of the

Universe radiates outward again by itself,

If we remain open and receptive.

This giving is not dependent on individual,

Perhaps close people. 

There is so much to share! 

All of existence can take part in it. 

Becoming one with the


Omnipresent love

Is such a silent ecstasy.

The affirmation is:

All-encompassing love fills me and my environment.

From The Wheel of Change:

The cup is a potent symbol of


Protection, and


It is a vessel of magic,

Allowing us to control liquids

That would otherwise

Escape our practical use. 

The cup or chalice is also associated

With the original container of life,

The womb.

The Ace of Cups

Is the most

Elemental and

Original expression

Of the

Water Element.

All life originally

Evolved in the


Womb of the


It was the





Where life was


Before it

Emerged and

Crawled to land.


The central cup of this card

Is the Ardagh Chalice,

One of the finest


Of early

Christian Celtic art,

Crafted in Ireland

In the early eighth Century.

Ireland is a

Mystical land of

Water and feeling.

The mist of the

Island, and its

Green foelds

Represent the

Fertile Goddess and

Her mystery,

Which lives

So deep in the

Hearts of the

Irish People.

The Ace represents

Emotion in an

Undivided state,

A type of

Feeling we rarely


As we grow

Older and learn to

Stand back from

Our feelings

So that we may

Interpret and

Analyse them.

In the

Rumi Tarot,

The Ace of Cups

Represents the

Intoxicating wine of

Divine Ecstasy

Imbibed within the

Tavern of Ruin

Served by the

Cupbearer, or

Saki , as

Celebrated by many

Arab-Persian poets.


Talismanic Cup is the

Jewelled Chalice of


The mythical

King of Persia,

Which contained the

Divine Elixer of

Intoxication and

Immortality, and in

Whose Depths

All things occurring in the

Seven Heavenly

Spheres were revealed to

The Seer.

The cup,

Chalice, or

Vessel also

Symbolises the

Feminine womb,

Which in the

Arabic language is



And Another Blitz Poem

Posted in Blogging Memes, Bookworm Tales, My Inspirations, Poetry, Quotents with tags , , on 29/06/2010 by gwenguin1

Trees In Belt

Researching my family tree

Researching the Norse World Tree

Trees in bloom

Trees in the wind

Wind in my hair

Wind in the wires

Wires in the wall

Wires on the poles

Poles have shifted before

Poles immigrated to America

America the Beautiful

America, Land of the Brave

Brave Pioneers

Brave New World

World in Black and White

World without end

End of the book

End of the line

Line on paper

Line in the sand

Sand between my toes

Sand on the beach

Beach at the ocean

Beach the boats

Boats bobbing on the waves

Boats tied at anchor

Anchor the poster to the wall

Anchored in the real world

World of Warcraft game

World of magic

Magic act

Magic both High and Low

Low prices for one week only

Low-pressure front is stalled

Stalled the lawn mower

Stalled at the starting line

Line of descent

Line forms here

Here is my house

Here is the victim

Victim of circumstance

Victim of the times

Times are changing

Times are listed below

Below the waterline

Below the belt

Belt out the tune

Belt of rotgut



Found Poetry

Posted in Blogging Memes, Bookworm Tales, Call Me The Seeker, Everday Living, Hestia's Hearth, It's In The Cards, Soul Food Cafe Fun, Tarot Journey, You can do these! with tags , , , , , , , , on 05/06/2010 by gwenguin1

My friend Shiloh did a post on Found Poetry a couple days ago {}  and I thought that I would give it a try, Since almost all of my fiction books await me in storage, I went ahead and used books form my grimoire they ended up being books that accompany two of my Tarot decks: The Wheel of Change Tarot and the Thoth-Crowley Tarot.


The Thoth-Crowley is the deck I use the most for my personal queries, and the card I have chosen as my Significator was one of the cards that the book opened to; The Queen of Wands (or Staves, or Batons).  Since she appeared and she reflects a lot of what the affirmations are saying I have also used the post for my tarot Journey with the Rumi Tarot.



Found Poetry One:

Wheel of Change Tarot



The Fool is

An expression of the

Possibilities that

Cannot be fixed,

And are open-ended.


The Hermit represents

What is really

True and right

For you

 Is within you

Waiting to be noticed.

The Wheel of Fortune

Asks you to

Make an opportunity

For self-understanding and

Self-growth through the

Mirror of the outer world.

From the Three of Wands

We learn that

The personal goal

Is to use your creative power

In a way that enhances

Your own life and

The lives of others.

On the Ace of Cups

The central Cup

Is the Ardagh Chalice

One of the

Finest examples of

Early Christian Celtic art.
 It represents

The soul’s journey

Toward the setting sun

And the Western Lands.


The Lands of Shadow

And Darkness. 

It is there

That we discover

Our deepest passions

and make connexions

With others that

transcend our limitations



Found Poetry Two

The Thoth-Crowley Tarot Deck




This one speaks from The Thoth-Crowley Tarot Deck, which is my personal favourite for Spiritual Lessons.   I think I will use a series of the Affirmations from this deck.



I am now ready for the new beauty in my life.
(Princess of Discs or Pentacles)

I find the strength I now need in my centre.
(Three of Wands or Staves)

I surrender to the transforming powers of the Divine. I am an open channel for creative energy.
(Art or Temperance)

I know more and more clearly who I am.  This recognition leads to the full development of my personal strength.
(Nine of Wands or Staves)

I am loved, simply because I am the way that I am.
(Nine of Swords)

I am a radiant being filled with Light and Love.
(Queen of Wands or Staves)

I am now ready to give everything and receive everything.
(Three of Discs or Pentacles)

I have the power and virtue to reflect and know.
(Three of Wands or Staves)

I relax and trust Life.
(Eight of Discs or Pentacles)

I have the courage to believe that all that happens in my life serves for the best.

(Seven of Discs or Pentacles)



Joseph’s Return

Posted in Call Me The Seeker, Everday Living, Family History, Hestia's Hearth, Misspent Youth, Old Deep Roots, The Family Tees with tags , , , , , , on 02/06/2010 by gwenguin1

The short story below is based on both my genealogical res3earch, and a family legend about ‘Big Joe’ DuBay:

‘Manda watched the road every day for Joseph’s return, she knew that the heavy frosts at night would send the loggers home from the camp for the winter.  She dreaded the summers, with him somewhere in the eerily dense forests beyond their small farm.  She didn’t complain about being the one to tend the crops and care for the animals, she was used to the hard work. 

She even enjoyed the opportunity to wear pants instead of her heavy skirts.  She was cooler as she walked the rows of corn, squash, tomatoes, beans, and even some rice in the lowest part of their property.  The wheat and hay was saved for the cows and Joseph’s prized Percheron pair, a well-matched mare and stallion.  They needed little in the way of aids to plough deep and straight rows for planting, or to mow the hay that kept them sleek and healthy all winter.

Elle and Homme produced a fine foal every year, this year Elle had foaled late, and Joseph did not know that this year’s colt was black instead of dapple-grey.  Petit Noir was already getting large and powerful, although he was less than six months old.  She petted him every day, and had woven a halter for the colt out of strips of waste fabric from her sewing.  How he had strutted the first day she had settled it on his fuzzy black head!

How pleased Joseph would be to return to a farm ready for the winter; she had a pantry full of canned and dried fruit from the woods, She had traded in town for flour, sugar, and coffee.  She had gotten a good price for their weaner pigs, especially the gilt that had red and black spots on her white hide.  They stood to have a good winter, thanks to both of their hard work.

Their dog, a woolly mixed breed barked, and she heard the joy in his voice, only Joseph’s return would cause that, the children they already had charged out the door, calling, “Papa!  Papa!”

‘Manda followed them, taking time to wrap a shawl around her shoulders, the fringe moving in time with her strides.  She smiled to herself, by the light of the lantern she could see him distributing maple sugar candy to their children, taking the time to hug each one and greet them by name.  He lifted little George to his shoulders and trotted towards her.

“’Manda, my dear wife, I ‘ave missed you so!  Augustus ‘as no skill at the cooking, I am wearied of bacon and beans with black bread.”  He held her close and inhaled the scent of lavender that always clung to her clothes, and her.

“Zhoseph!  I am so glad to see you too.  Now I will sleep well at night again.  Allez, I ‘ave a fine roast boeuf for dîner with potatoes, beets, and a fine pain complet.

“Ahhhh… I will eat well again! ‘Ow much wood ‘ave we for the winter?”  Though he spoke lightly ‘Manda could hear something in his voice, a sadness he had not had before he left last spring.

“Zhoseph, what ‘as ‘appened?”

“Later, we will talk of it later ma petite.”  He leaned over; far enough to kiss the carpenter’s square perfect part in her dark hair.  He had spent the summer dreaming of watching her brush it at night, with a single candle bathing her in a golden halo of light.

Joseph’s pre-dinner prayer of thanks was heartfelt, even more deeply than usual.  The lamps glowed brightly over the dinner, shining on ‘Manda’s china and silver, both decorated with golden D’s.  The table itself gleamed from the patient sanding and oiling Joseph had lavished on it.

Dinner lasted late into the evening, Joseph told the children tales of the kinkajou that had terrorised the trappers, and the doe that had so little fear of them that she raised her twin fawns within sight of their single large cabin.  The loggers had taken to leaving treats for the family on a convenient stump.  By late summer the fawns would follow Augustus around, butting him with nubs of horns to beg for treats.

Pierre, the dog, gnawed happily on a beef bone under the trestle table Joseph had built to hold their growing family.  Little George was settled in Joseph’s lap, leaning trustingly against his father’s 6’5”, well-muscled form.  His dark eyes would flutter closed and then open in determination as soon as he heard his father’s voice.

Finally, after a treat of hot chocolate all of the children fell asleep under hand-sewn quilts on their bed of woven rope, under a down mattress.  George was rocking slowly in the small bed, Joseph’s foot happily taking his turn at rocking their baby.

“Now, Joseph, tell me what has darkened your heart so?”  ‘Manda took her husband’s calloused hands in her own.

“Ahhh, my ‘Manda, a terrible thing ‘appen this summer….” Joseph could not bring himself to look at his dainty, fearless wife.

“You know ‘ow the men are, they grow bored in the evening and seek something to fill the hours they would rather spend with their families.  They will drink, gamble, and ‘ave fights to pass these lonely times.  I usually spend the time reading, or praying to Le Bon Dieu.  I rarely take a drink for drinking will lead to foolish acts

“One night, I did take a drink, I ached worse than usual because the saw had kicked back so many times on an ancien oak.  I will not lie; I took more than one drink.

“The men were fighting one another, boxing and wrestling.  Paddy, le petit Irlandais, drank more than any and grew hostile.  He wished me to fight with ‘im, but I told ‘im non, for he is so much smaller than I, it could never be a fair fight.

“’E would not take my no for an answer and he attack me.  I ‘ad no choice but to defend myself.  I ‘ated to raise my ‘and to a friend so I did not ‘it as ‘ard as I can, I make a slow uppercut.

Unfortunelment, he sharge me as I did this, I ‘it Paddy in the nose.  He immediately fell down and did not get back up.  Augustus check, and Paddy ‘ad died from that one blow.

“’Ow can I ever go to ‘Eaven to be with Le Bon Dieu et L’enfant Jesu after I ‘ave killed my friend?  I must spend the rest of my life trying to return to God’s favour.

“I promise you, I will never drink again, nor raise my ‘and to any living thing.  I will dedicate my life to Le Bon Dieu.  From zees day forwar’ I will not swear and I will pray as often as I can…”

“Zhoseph, my dear, it was not your fault, le pauvre Paddy made the mistakes.”  ‘Manda cupped her husband’s face in her hands.

Joseph’s face crumpled and he began to sob, tearing sobs that shook his whole frame.  Manda stood and buried his face in her stomach, to muffle his cries and not disturb the children.

“It will be all right, my dear, have zee authorities been notified?”

“Yes, Enri rode into the nearest town and brought their sheriff back.  After he had spoken with everyone he said that Paddy’s death was an unfortunate accident, and that no-one would be charged.”

“When we go to Mass Sunday…” ‘Manda began.

“I ‘ave already ask Pere Robidaux to say a Mass for Paddy every morning, I pay ‘im too.  I ‘ave also made arrangements to ‘elp ‘is widow and children.  I personally rode to their ‘ome and apologise to Madame O’Brien…”

“Ahhhhh mon brave, you ‘ave t’ought of ever’t’ing.  What did Pere Robidaux say of all this?

After I confess to ‘im, ‘e give me a penance, an’ ‘e tell me God ‘as forgiven me.  I cannot yet forgive myself for what ‘appened.”

“I know Zhoseph, I do not blame you, and I will always love you, for you are a truly good man.”

Ma petite, ‘ow did I ever get so fortunate as to ‘ave you for my bride?”

“You make me laugh, right in the middle of Mass!”  ‘Manda kissed Joseph and smiled brightly.

It was then that Joseph knew that he was truly home.

Yeah, Well… My family was…

Posted in Call Me The Seeker, Everday Living, Family History, Hestia's Hearth, Old Deep Roots, Soul Food Cafe Fun, Stuff And Nonsense, The Family Tees with tags , , , , , on 24/05/2010 by gwenguin1


“If you look deeply into the palm of your hand, you will see your parents and all generations of your ancestors. All of them are alive in this moment. Each is present in your body. You are the continuation of each of these people.”
~Thich Nhat Hanh~ 


There are any number of people (I’m one) who talk about what their ancestors did and who their ancestors were.  I can’t remember the quote I read about someone bragging about their ancestors is like a turnip; the best part of them is underground.

 I’m also one of those who wonder if the tall tales of ancestors are the truth or not.
 Can someone prove that his or her ancestor was tossing tea into the Boston Harbor?  Was someone’s Great-Great-great-Great Uncle was supposed to go to Little Big Horn with Yellow Hair, but they were ill and the fort Doctor said no to them going?
 How can one go about proving their boasts on generations past?  Simple, you do your family tree, or have it done.  Shiloh and I are doing this, and see the opportunity for a lot of writing, both journalistic and creative.

 I have been doing mine for about 6 months now and have followed one branch of eight Great-Grandparents all the way back to the 7th century.  I doubt I’ll see any more go back that far but you never know.

 Shiloh has been working on hers for a couple weeks so she’s still in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.  We both hope to find ancestors in common.

I hope to prove that there is Native American in my family tree.  Shiloh wants to know more about her Danish ancestors.

 We both want to do a series of posts about where our ancestors were during a specific historical event.  Par example, both of our families were already here in the U. S. for the Civil War/War of Northern Aggression.

 Since this is a joint project, you’ll be able to access all the posts we make on each of our personal blogs.  We’ll provide an archive and links to the posts so you’ll be able to track our progress.


Here is where you will be able to access everything from Shiloh’s Blog:

Living History

Posted in Everday Living, Old Deep Roots, Reviews and Previews, Stuff And Nonsense, You can do these! with tags , , , , , , , on 13/05/2010 by gwenguin1

 Below is a taste of living history- 2010 is the 150th anniversary of the Pony Express here in the US.

I  read a book many years ago, and many times called “Mustang-Wild Spirit of the West” , in the book “Wild Horse Annie” testifies before the US Supreme Court, that the Mustang, then being hunted for meat, was the only horse the Pony Express would use for the very difficult mountain terrain. 

The wiry, compactly tough little mustang was a descendant of the Andalusian horses brought here  by the Conquistadores, and then bred with horses that escaped or were ‘borrowed’ from white settlers during the days of the Wild West.


St. Joseph, Missouri - Where the Pony Express Began and Jesse James Ended.


Pony Express
Pony Experss


Relive the Excitement! Witness the 150th Pony Express Re-Ride.

If you missed the April 3, 2010, 150th celebration of the launch of the Pony Express, you won’t want to miss the National Pony Express Association’s Annual Re-Ride over the 1,966 mile route of the Pony Express National Historic Trail from California, through Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, Nebraska, Colorado, and Kansas to Missouri, June 6 to 26, 2010. The event commemorates the Pony Express of 1860-1861. This year marks the 150th Anniversary of the Pony Express. The Central Overland and California Pikes Peak Express Company carried letters and telegrams for 19 months to prove the Central Route through Salt Lake passable year round. The owners hoped to win a federal mail contract on that route. Pony Express history is preserved in the federally designated Historic Trail, administered by the National Park Service, in museums, Pony Rider monuments, books, and the annual re-creations by the NPEA.

Normally, this Re-Ride is a 10-day, 24-hour a day, non-stop event by over 500 riders and horses. In 2010 the Annual Re-Ride will divert to all daytime hours in most places. This gives the Divisions and other entities/communities a chance to hold a celebration. The mail will be carried by rivercraft from San Francisco to Sacramento before the start of the re-ride .

Each of the eight “Pony Express” states (California, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, Nebraska, Colorado, Kansas, and Missouri) will also celebrate the 150th Anniversary of the Pony Express with events of their own, as well as, creating their own souvenirs.

The Re-Ride concludes on Saturday, June 26, 2010, at the Patee House Museum. In honor of the conclusion of the National Pony Express Association’s annual re-ride, at 10 a.m. the Missouri chapter of the NPEA will hold a colorful circa-1860 procession from the foot of Francis Street at the St. Joseph riverfront through downtown St. Joseph, past the famed Pony Express statue and original stables at the Pony Express Museum…ending with the arrival of the horses and mochila (mail bag) at the Patee House Museum, site of the original Pony Express headquarters. In a moving ceremony, commemorative letters carried from California will be turned over to the US Postal Service for delivery in St. Joseph-just like in the days of the Pony Express! Admission to the Patee House is $5 for adults and $3 for students; Admission to the Jesse James Home is $3 for adults and $1.50 for students,; (816) 232-8206.
St. Joseph, MO, has created a PX150 Sesquicentennial Facebook Page full of information happening around St. Joseph during 2010 for this anniversary year. Click HERE for additional information about the history of the Pony Express, 2010 Pony Express Sesquecentennial Event Calendar, and FREE downloads for your mobile phone.




Quick Link


American Road magazine on:





American Road Magazine | PO Box 46519 | Mt. Clemens | MI | 48046

The Story of the Green Man and his White Lady

Posted in Hestia's Hearth, It's In The Cards, My Inspirations, Soul Food Cafe Fun, Tarot Journey, You can do these! with tags , , , , , , , on 13/05/2010 by gwenguin1

Once upon a time, in a small kingdom by the edge of a wide, sweet sea there lived a King and Queen who reigned happily over their people.  There was but one wee grey cloud in sll the kingdom…  


The King and Queen were only able to have one child…

 The Lady Anemone Fionn, a daughter they deeply adored, for all that she was a solemn, chubby child who preferred the company of books and commoners to days spent gossiping in the court.   Since she was not the prettiest of children and did not have the sprightly temperament of many princesses, they despaired of her ever being happily wed.


 So she was allowed to wander among the commoners in sparrow-brown garb, where she learned about love and kindness, as well as tolerance in the huts and shops of the capital city.   As she began to grow older, she accepted the training she would need to be their heir without complaint or rebellion.  She wished to serve her country with the best she could be.



It was early in her training that the first letter from the Green Man came to them, aboard a gaily-painted ship, with sails of exotic silks.  One of the letters was given up to the King and Queen, requesting their daughter’s hand in marriage when she came of age.


 The other letter was delivered to the young Lady; from that day on she kept all of the Green Man’s letters in a box of delicate silver filigree.  She wore the key to the box around her neck on a plain silvery chain.


“Anemone Fionn, Sweet lady of the Beaches, you hold my heart in your gentle hands.  My Spirit sings at the merest thought of you, and my heart beats in tune with thine.  When the day comes that all see the beauty I do I shall claim you as my beloved bride.”


 His words had lost no power since they had been given to her by a man from the Green Man’s country when she had not yet blossomed into womanhood.

When the arrogant young princelings would laugh at her face and form she would reread them and find much comfort in the words he had written only for her.


 When no nearby princes or kings asked for her hand, she begged her parents to accept the Green Man’s pledge, and betroth her to the man who had comforted her, and sparked her mind to discover more about the world than any other Princess deigned to pretend to know.


And so it came to pass, after many long years that the Green Man wrote to the Lady and told her.  “I will be with you in truth with the coming of summer my sweet Lady Anemone.”


Faioléan the seagull perched close to the sorrowful lady and spoke in his skree-ing language.  “Weep not my lady fair.  The Uaine Fear, comes to claim thee, sailing across the wide green seas.”



The lady did return, “O Faioléan tell me true, does he love this plain face of mine?”



“Fear not fair Lady Anemone, the Uaine Fear comes for you, seeking yon beauty across the wide, green seas



The Seagull hopped close enough for the Lady to smell the sea and fish on his feathers, his bright eye locked with hers.



“Fear not dear Lady, for the Uaine Fear cometh to you, seeking your beauty and pure spirit.”



So the lady returned day after day, waiting by the ocean for this secret lover who sought her.



Her pale cheeks were given a golden glow by the sun’s light, and the gentle, salt air of the ocean soothed her breathing so much so that she even stopped coughing.



The dull brown hair that had been so lifeless and limp began to have secret tints of gold in its curls.



The longer she remained by the sea, and forsook the rich food and many sweets in the castle the slimmer her limbs became, and her skin became smooth and honeyed.


 Every day the same gull was at her side, reassuring her of the Green Man’s advance across the wide, sweet sea.

Every day, the sailors on the docks, calling to her how pretty she was becoming, greeted the Lady and she would thank them prettily for their kind words.



Every night as she lay in her soft, fluffy bed the Green Man would send nightingales to sing her to sleep.  In their sweet voices she heard the words the Green Man had written to her all those years ago.



One summer day, years ago, the Green Man gifted her with vibrant silks to clothe herself with.  They had delicate laces, golden and silver buttons, the fur of exotic animals, and rare jewels to sew to the clothes with Thread-of-Gold.


Every season the Lady would take them out and ponder dresses from them, and them put them away, until she would have a fairer form to wear them upon.



One day as she dressed in another drab gown, that now hung off her like sails on a windless sea, her ladies-in-waiting all conspired to measure her for a new gown. 


While the Lady waited at the shore for the Green Man, the ladies in waiting made her a new gown, from a deep peacock blue silk, trimmed with Peacock’s feathers and Thread-of-Silver, and many, many tiny pearls crusting the bodice.

When the lady returned that evening, and began to ready herself for dinner her ladies-in-waiting slipped the blue gown over her head, and styled her hair to show off the golden dusting on the soft curls.


 The Lady looked in her polished silver mirror, and stared.  Surely this lovely creature brushed in gold dust couldn’t be her!!   

From whence had come the womanly curves, and kissable freckles?



The same princes and Kings who had jested at her expense gathered about her, each vying for her full attention.



She laughed and treated them with tolerance, but none of them turned her head from the Green Man, who had sought her hand when no others would.



Night after night, she fended off a parade of handsome Princes and Kings.  Day after day her ladies fashioned another gown, trying to outdo the previous one in beauty and uniqueness.



Day after day she watched the seas for some sign of the green Man’s bright sails on the horizon.



At last there was only white silk that seemed to hide all other colours in its shadows left in her case of fabrics.



She took it out and caressed it, delighting in the way it slid through her fingers.  “I wish to save this gown for when my future husband, the Green Man, arrives.  And this is how I want it to look.”



And so it was that her ladies fashioned a gown to be the envy of every highborn woman in every country.



It was of clean and simple lines, and a bodice set with squares of abalone, mother-of-pearl, and lapis lazuli set in it like a necklace.  With Thread-of-Silver, they embroidered circles of ivy, mistletoe sprigs, holly, and white roses along the bottom of the gown.



The lady went to the Royal Jeweller and asked him to make her a discrete coronet.  A silver band to sit among her curls, engraved with flowers, and set with magical stones that continued in the silver netting that fell to the ground.



The lady tried it on, and she was well pleased and thanked her ladies-in-waiting with generous gifts and sweet words of gratitude.



And so, not long after, she spied a black spot on the horizon.  Her heart beat so she could barely breathe, and she ran home, calling for her ladies in waiting as soon as she had seen the bright colours of the Green Man’s sails.



Once she was dressed in her white gown and she had caught her breath she returned to the docks to await the Green Man.



At long last, the Green Man’s fleet filled the harbour, their sails were each of a different pattern of silk, and they lay at anchor peacefully.



With all due ceremony, and great pomp, the Green Man walked from his ship, across the plank, and onto the dock, where the Lady awaited him with bright eyes and glowing smile.



She could see nothing of his face behind a cunningly carved emerald mask.  At last they stood face to face, and still he held up the mask.



My Dear Lady of the Blue Harbour.  Will you still wed me?”



The Lady answered happily. “I have awaited this day forever and a day, yes, I will wed you.”



At last the Green Man took down his mask, showing everyone an ugly, twisted old man’s face with spindly legs and potbelly.



“One last time I would ask thee.  Wilt thou marry me as I am?”



“I will marry thee, whether thou art handsome or no.  You have always treated me with gentleness and respect, and have gifted me with loveliness and comfort.  Yes, I will gladly call you husband, and follow wherever thou wilt go.”  The Lady knelt in her white raiment and kissed the wrinkled hand tenderly.



The Green Man threw back his cape and dashed the mask to pieces on the dock’s planks.  “And so our love will be fulfilled.!!”



In a flash of golden light he stood tall, becoming a young and very handsome prince, medals at his breast and a golden crown covered in rare jewels sat amongst his golden brown curls.  His sea green eyes were afire with love for the Lady.


“When I was young a Sorceress cursed my Kingdom and me.  Neither would know a happy day, or prosperity until I would be accepted by a Lady who did not recoil at the ugliness she set upon me.”



And so it was that the Green Prince and his White Lady were married and travelled to his Kingdom on the other side of the deep, sweet sea, where they lived happily ever after, and made sure that the people of their kingdoms would know happiness as well.



Again, what has this to do with out Tarot Journey?  This surely is The Lovers of the Major Arcana.  The choice between love and lust, a true connexion, and a passing fling.



The Lovers

"Love has a thousand feathers."

How The All-Mother Got Her Cloaks

Posted in Call Me The Seeker, Critter Tails, Hestia's Hearth, It's In The Cards, Soul Food Cafe Fun, Tarot Journey, You can do these! with tags , , , , , on 05/05/2010 by gwenguin1

How the All-Mother got Her Cloaks


All-Mother was always her happiest when she was with all of the lovely animals She and All-Father had created for our blue-and-green jewel in a far-flung arm of the Galaxy and Universe.  She would walk through the wilds and Her animals would put aside their daily lives and follow her in growing parade; where wolf and deer, bear, Cougar and sheep walked peaceably with small furry things, lizards, snakes, birds and frogs chatting as they scurried in the leaf-mould.

The larger birds all wished to perch on her shoulder in a friendly manner, but she had to remind them frequently to take care with their talons on her bare skin.  All of the animals knew that they could wound All-Mother without meaning to, despite being as careful as they could.

At night, All-Father and All-Mother rested beneath a blanket All-Mother had woven from bits of the animals’ shed fur that was caught on thorns.  She spun it in the evening, singing a wordless lullaby in time to her foot on the pedal of her spinning wheel.

One such night, while All-Father and Mother slumbered, the animals met deep in the forest.

 “All-Mother needs some protection, not just from our claws, but from the weather as well.  In deepest Winter I have watched Her shiver as She scattered food on the snow so we would not starve.”  Bear spoke in his slow, deep-thinking way.

 “What can we do?  Any of us would gladly give Her our skin, but She would not allow us to harm ourselves so.”  Wolf’s yellow eyes were sombre. 

“Some of our hides would do less than nothing for our Dear All-Mother!!”  Chipmunk’s busy little voice was barely audible.

“My hide would not protect our All-Mother from the cold.”  Snake’s words were sibilant and hypnotic. 

“Agreed, my skin will only repel water.”  Salamander ‘s words were mournful.  “That would not keep her warm at all.”

“No it would not work for warmth, but she would appreciate shelter from the rain.”  Owl spoke from his perch on a hollowed oak.  “Perhaps what we should do is this…” He laid out a plan all creatures thought was brilliant, and all agreed joyously to participate in.

Night after night, every animal in the wilds passed by Owl’s tree to contribute to the gifts for their All-Mother.  Every animal gave a piece of hide; each allowed their own choice of where the hide came from.  Almost unanimously the animals chose a place closest to their hearts to show how much they loved All-Mother and Father.

 Pride after pride of Lions strode to the secluded glade; those noble kings donated two kinds of hide.  The males shared their glorious manes, and the females shared their bellies, warm and golden. That is why to this day Mother Animals will have bare places on their bellies.

The Zebras all offered either white or black stripes, so that their stripes could be reproduced.  On the soft ground their hooves made no sound as the herds deposited their gifts

Bears all shared their shaggy hide, whether it be black, white or any colour in between, they took the hide from nearest their hearts, to show their love for All-Mother.

 The wee rodents also offered their hides; tiny bits could be added together to make a section of squirrel, or chipmunk.  There were also small pieces that fit a place too small for a large animals’ hide.

Other great cats, the leopard and cheetah, jaguar and tiger also gave of themselves happily for All-Mother’s comfort. 

 The wee housecats also gifted their fur, and stayed to encourage others when they came, as well as guard the glade from All-Mother during the day.  Their defence consisted of racing through the trees until they met up with All-Mother, and then they tripped her up ecstatic snugglings, silken head-butts and purred cries for attention.

Wolves, by the pack, or the Lone Wolves who forsook their solitary ways to give their coats to All-Mother, even the cubs added their baby fluff to the Wolves’ donation.

 Dogs trotted in with their tails wagging and tongues lolling, as happy as could be to be serving the All-Mother.  The ones with the greatest hearts remained to soothe the tender places left after the bit of hide was gifted.  They also set themselves to lead All-Mother astray from the glade; they would easily inveigle Her into a game of tug-of war or chase-the-stick

The horses trotted through, gifting from their long, graceful manes to trim the fronts of the cloaks, they studied the growing pile of gifts and nodded their heads approvingly.  They also offered to carry the hide from animals that could not travel on land.

 The seals, sea lions and Walruses gave their waterproof hides to go around the face of All-Mother to keep ice from forming.  Their barks of happiness could be heard in the faraway glade.

When the parts for the gifts were all together the insects took every little piece and cleaned off any mess on the skin, and then combed them with their legs.  When everything was perfect spiders took their turn, as did the silkworms.

 Slowly, four magnificent cloaks began to take shape; all of them held a small piece of every animals’ hides.  The spiders and silkworms sewed them together, with all of their eyes focussed on how prettily the pieces were fitted, and how the patterns and colours complemented one another.

Often the spiders and silkworms would stop to exclaim in delight at how well certain pieces of fur would match.  ‘Look here, how the mane of the lions looks with the coat of the panthers next to it’, or, ‘Doesn’t the red of Foxes’ coat look even more striking next to Zebras’ stripes.’

Two cloaks were all of fur, warm and comfortable; and would fit All-Father and All-Mother perfectly.  The second pair was of the skins of snakes and reptiles, and rubbed to a soft gloss with the oils donated by otters, beavers, and other water mammals.

The birds were unhappy about being unable to contribute to the cloaks, until Owl told them what they could do for All-Mother’s comfort and pleasure.  Bird after bird perched next to Owl and pulled soft down from nearest their hearts. 

The Spiders and Silkworms wove soft grasses, and then they were stuffed with the down to form a soft bed for All-Mother and All-Father.  There was enough of the soft grasses and down to make small cushions for them to rest their heads on as they slept.

Finally all of the gifts were ready.  The animals were all in a swivet awaiting All-Mother’s response to their generosity.  The next day as All Mother visited Her creations the animals began to slowly lead her in the direction of the cloaks.

 The flowers scattered petals on All-Mother’s path, as they always did, as the leaves on the trees danced for joy when All-Mother came their way.  She would pause to smell a flower here, and embrace a stout tree as She was led by the parade of animals closer to the Glade of Gifts as it became known.

The All-Mother entered the Glade and stopped with Her mouth open; from sturdy branches hung two cloaks in a patchwork of all of Her animals’ fur, more branches held the cloaks of reptile skins; before this was the soft cushions full of down.

“Oh!  My dear Creations, such love is in these gifts!”  She turned to the animals with tears in Her eyes, now She could see the small patches where they had donated their hides for Her comfort. Overflowing with love and reverence All-Mother healed all of the small patches, leaving them bare.

 And that my loves, is why all of the animals will have a bare patch somewhere on their body.  So now, when you see your animal’s bare spot you will know that the All-Father and All-Mother do exist and that they love us very much indeed.

 What has this to do with our Tarot Journey?  The High Priestess is the one that teaches us how to honour the All-Father and All-Mother in everything that we do.

Mysteries are not communicable

Save to those who know.


Posted in Everday Living, Family History, Hestia's Hearth, Misspent Youth, My Inspirations, Old Deep Roots, Reviews and Previews, The Moversd and the Shapers with tags , , , , , , , , , on 03/05/2010 by gwenguin1

My brother Matt and I went shopping this weeekend, off to the record and junk stores.  We always have so much fun doing this, showing one another weird vinyl we thought had died a well-deserved death many moons ago.

This time, however it was all cool stuff we found.  I only bought 1 new album, but I bought almost a dozen albums.  The one I clasped to my chest, ready to race home that very minute and play it, loud, on my stereo; and to he-double-toothpicks with anyone else’s feelings.

I know Mum wouldn’t mind, and I soon discovered that Matt got excited about it too.  He said he has never seenh it in all of his years of music shopping, and this was the first time I’d seen it.  I kept looking at the album again, so afraid it wasn’t what it was.  Finally, 36 hours later, I sat down to play and record it. 

Not more than three bars into the first side I was covered in gooseflesh, caught in a flashback to childhood that is still so clear. 

Mom and I went to the movies, just her and I, it was a special treat because of the orthopaedic shoes, leg braces, and spacer bar I was required to wear all the time.  This was supposed to treat the too-short muscles in my feet and the pigeon-toe’d-ness.

We sat almost in the very fromt, and there weren’t a lot of people at the theatre, but there were enough to make me more uncomfortable than I already was, on a picky, smelly theatre seat.  I was settled like a wee Princess with a small soda and candy, and my legs straight out in front of me wearing a dress of all things!!

At  last, the previews had finished and the lights faded completely away as “Fantasia” began.  I was so lost in the music and animation that I forgot my soda and candy, I forgot having to wear a dress, and I even forgot the leg braces and other equipages holding me still.

Most of the animation was so right, even the “Tocatta and Fugue in D Minor” by J. S. Bach, the free-form, pre-LSD trip psychedelia had me enthralled.  I fell in love with the centaurs and dancing crocodiles, and delighted in the dancing thistles, and the slow grace of Walt Disney’s fish.  To this day, I doodle my version of those fish, and don’t really think about it when I do it.

Igor Stravinsky’s “Rite of Spring”  was well paired with Disney’s animation for it, and almost impossible to look away from.

My two top clips were “Night on Bald Mountain” by Moussourgsky, I thought the devil was nicely scary, yet a devil that wouldn’t give us chillens bad dreams.

My #1 All-Time favourite was “The Sorceror’s Apprentice, but, as charming as Mickey was, and as delightful as the tale was, that wasn’t what I saw, then and to this day.  I see bears, of all kinds, brown, black, polar, grizzly; adult and cub romp in my imagination.

The most awesome thing about listening to part of “Fantasia” was that I remebered what wonder felt like, and how from the first time I saw this film my most secret dream was to create my own  version of this film, I have the story, the music, the desire, the only thing I don’t have is the eyesight.

There isn’t a durn thinag I can do about the eyesight, I’m so blind I don’t dare drive.  BUT>>> I am not going to sit around feeling sorry for myself, I can still doodle, read and write (which I was never supposed to be able to do), sew, crochet, embroider, many other things that bring me joy.

What I can do with that dream is see it in my mind, and then write it down, and hope that one day a patient artist will make this dream a reality.  So that I can sit in another theatre, chair, world, and see my dream up on the big screen, and feel that same sense of wonder.

A Film Worth Seeing

Posted in Everday Living, Reviews and Previews, Scaddy Kiddies, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , , , , , on 20/03/2010 by gwenguin1

Last Friday I saw a film on the Chiller Channell  that I spent the next four days raving to Mum about.  The day after that Matt found it at Bookmans’ and had them hold it until we had the money to buy it.  We paid what we felt was a tad much for a used DVD, $12 US.  It is worth every penny though. 

The story was chilling, the sets and costumes were perfect for the era, 1928-32,  I fell in love with the cars and the sets.  All those high-ceilinged rooms, with ice boxes, hand-tatted lace and those beautiful old radios.

The characters were all believable, and so three dimenbsional, from the main character- the infamous child-killer and cannibal, Albert Fish, to the police officers at the missing persons bureau.  The actor who portrayed Albert Fish was amazing, he could say something as simple as “I’m starving.” and send chills down your spine.

Individual scenes stand out, like the one when Albert Fish kidnaps Grace Budd, everything else, people, clothes, buildings, streets, even the light seems greyed and dirty, except for the ill-fated Grace, clad in her snowy, pristine Confirmation Dress, with perfectly white hat, gloves, stockings and shoes.

Later, Albert is seen cutting a piece of meat from Grace’s remains and sniffs it in a transport of gustatory delight.   The actor portraying Albert Fish manages to make a cheerful old man whstling as he worked as a labourer, and buying candy for neighbours’ children someone utterly terrifying, to the point his voice alone can send chills down your spine.

Everyone from the producers to the behind-the-scenes-that-aren’t-listed people did excellent jobs.  This is a film that can be watched more than once and you will see things with subsequent viewings that you missed before that  make the film one worth buying.

In Response to Heather’s post

Posted in Call Me The Seeker, Everday Living, It's In The Cards, Soul Food Cafe Fun, Tarot Journey with tags , , , , , , , on 10/03/2010 by gwenguin1

Heather’s most recent post:

Awakened one of my most enduring alter egos-T he Universal Mommath: She has never been called by her ‘proper’ name, she simply is. Powerful, generous, enduring, She’s a tad chubby, with Her hair in a soft knot wearing an old red apron with magnets, and other fascinating toys in the capacious pockets of said apron.

She awakened as I read Heather’s post and She immediately wanted to fly to the rescue of a girlchild in need of mothering and comfort. She went so far as to ready her lap, have jasmine tea steeping, and tuck a few sweets into her pocket. Her couch is soft and comfy with handmade afghans and fluffy pillows.

The fireplace glows with a cosy fire, and there are cats and dogs all over, even birds and fish have been sent to Her for loving and teaching. You can hear other children’s voices, joyous shouts from upstairs and outside.

Everywhere are plants flourishing, small trees, ivies wandering across ceilings and walls, the walls are covered in photos and artwork; everything from a toddler’s scribblings to well-practised paintings full of talent and promise.

There are baskets with yarn, embroidery floss, fabric, and sewing projects in various stages of doneness.

A cedar chest is propped open and full of toys that delight children of all ages, Tonka Toys, Matchbox Cars, Dolls, Green Plastic Army Men, Lincoln Logs, Legos, Colorforms sets, Barbie clothes and accessories. A low bookshelf is full of books, board games, and puzzles, there are child-sized chairs and a table. In boxes over the shelf are coloured pencils, crayons, markers, colouring books and blank paper.

There is music playing softly from upstairs, guitar, piano, violin and drums, it doesn’t take long to recognise that it is practice exercises, and the players are growing bored, The Universal Mommath simply smiles and shakes her head in response to off-key flourishes and extra-hard cymbal clashes.

The door to this wondrous place of love and healing is inside all of us. We learn to be our own Mommath from the times we wished we had a Mommath nearby so we could lean on them and just rest for a while.

What does this have to do with the Tarot, and our Journey?

Everything! The Universal Mommath is The Empress of the Major Arcana.

The Universal Mommath personified

Woman is a ray of Divine Light.

“Woman is a ray of the Divine Light.” What a powerful though to ponder, we, the washers of dishes, the blowers of noses, the finders of all lost things, the keepers of all dates and times, the keeper of life-souveniers large and small.

How many Moms save all of their children’s school pictures, and report cards? How many Moms always keep specific medicines on hand because they know they will need them on Sunday night after all the stores are closed?

And so to you, my Sisters, Mommaths, and good ol’ Mommas, I offer up the gift of Divinity. We are all Goddesses in our own right.

A Very Hestia Hobby

Posted in Everday Living, Family History, Hestia's Hearth, Munchable Memories, Old Deep Roots, Soul Food Cafe Fun with tags , , , , , , on 07/03/2010 by gwenguin1

Not too long ago, Christmas 2009 to be exact; my family made our infamous Rice and Tomato soup.

 No need to shudder, it isn’t a cream soup!!

We sent these as Christmas gifts to family members, since a kettle of soup really doesn’t work as a gift, we also canned the soup and gave the cans as gifts.

In a perfect world I would have sent the jars of soup through the pressure canner for 2 hours at 25 p.s.i., this world is far from perfect so we didn’t trek down to the storage unit and dig until we found the pressure canner, drag it back to the house, wash it inside and out, and then set it up.


 1-2 quart bottles of V-8 vegetable juice

2 or 3 large cans of petite diced tomatoes

1 large onion, finely chopped

2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

2 ham steaks, cut in 1-1/2 inch cubes

1 pound of carrots, thinly sliced

3-4 bay leaves


Lemon Pepper to taste

2-3 cups of instant rice

In a large kettle combine all the ingredients except the rice, use 2-3 inches of water in an empty bottle of the V-8 to rinse the last of the liquid from the juice and tomatoes into the soup. Simmer for 4-6 hours, or until the carrots are tender.

Add equal amounts of water and instant rice, and simmer for 1-2 hours or until the rice pops. Serve with fresh baked bread and cheese, or good ol’ grilled cheese sandwiches.

The soup, when all the cooking is done.

Soup, ready to be et.


To can the soup, fill clean, hot quart-size jars to within 1 inch of the top. Remove any air bubbles and wipe off the jar before placing the lid and ring on and tightening the ring. When you have a canner load ready re-tighten the rings and fill the canner.

Cover the jars in boiling water.

Jars in hot water. (Iwonder what they did?)


Special tool, vital to job.

This is Special Tool # such-and-such.


Does a great job I tell ya.

Does a great job I tell ya.


Fill to within 1 inch oh the top.

I think this one may be a... just a tad... overfull.


Jar, ready for the pressure canner.

I'm almost ready for the jacuzzi guys.


Cleaned up and ready to can.

Just a quick wash before the jacuzzi.


Set the canner for 25 pounds per square inch, once the pressure canner has sealed itself keep a constant temperature and p.s.i. for 2 hours. Allow the canner to cool naturally( do not run cold water over it), once it has unsealed itself carefully remove the jars and set them in a cool, dry place for 24 hours.

Jars, after being canned.

Brrrrrr!! Anyone gotta towel?


Remove all of the bands and check the seals on the jars by lifting them about an inch off the counter by the metal lids. Wash the outside of the jars, label with contents and the date.

I Have Found My Way In!

Posted in Blogging Memes, Bookworm Tales, Call Me The Seeker, Hestia's Hearth, It's In The Cards, My Inspirations, Reviews and Previews, Soul Food Cafe Fun, You can do these! with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 06/03/2010 by gwenguin1

Having learned from previous Journeys with Mme. La Enchanteur that doorways to Lemuria lie somewhere between the subconscious mind and the imagination (shades of “The Twilight Zone”!) I closed my eyes to find my doorway. I fell asleep and my doorway opened wide, to a High-Def, Wide screen vista of Lemuria and her history.

I dreamt of a small village, a few talented, hardy individuals carving out a niche in Cyberspace for themselves. The first tenuous strands attached to the World Wide Web, and sent out more tendrils. Other, like-minded adventurers follower the connexions to their source, and the village grew.

More Webs stretched ‘round the globe, and now connected hearts, minds and Spirits. The village planted Dream Seeds, and grew Secret Gardens to rival the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. The villagers each built their own Castles in the Air and saw their dreams gain substance. Soon the village began to have a tourist trade, with people from the world over coming to see the wonders in the village and carry the word of the village further.

I came to join this village and wondered what my place in this magick should be. No sooner had I thought this than I saw a place, from deep within the fertile earth of my imagination, a place of birth and immortality. The village gathered round this place of sunlight, constant blossoms, and the smell of ripening fruit. Each member had their own time of labouring, and giving birth to children of great beauty. As each new life was begun, so many members of the village cheered and exclaimed with joy, that soon the village was a bustling city and still growing.

My place in the village, and one purpose of the village was that, to be a nursery to talent, ideas, and growth, not only of mind and imagination, but also of Spirit and ideals. The village is also a place of great change, new members would stagger in, sore wounded and weary of Spirit and discovered that there would be support and guidance through every step they would make from now forward.

How we each make the journey along our healing road is different for every person, as it ought to be; yet we all know that others have been there and others will follow behind us. We have been gifted with the most precious knowledge of all. We are not alone!!

I hold the bag Mme. La Enchanteur has gifted me with, it has such weight, and the energy contained in such a wee package, pulsing with the life of creativity. In it are so many tiny tools to use in my travels. And a deck of Tarot Cards, unlike any other deck I had in my collection.  The Packet of Dream Seeds I return to Mme. La Enchanteur, I have been in the village long enough to have my own Dream Seeds to carry with me.

“The Rumi Tarot” created by Nigel Jackson, based upon the teachings of the Sufi scholar Rumi, full of mysticism, deep wisdom and ageless beauty. The Fool is, of course the beginning, and he is an innocent young man, unprepared for, and unaware of the dangers ahead of him on his journey.

At The Baginning

"Be foolish, so that your heart may know peace."

The inscription at the bottom intrigued me, “Be foolish, so that your heart may know peace.” Foolish, the word has so many negative connotations. Someone that is stupid, naive, unaware of what greases the wheels of the world.

Having done the Tarot for over 35 years (O My Gods!!) I know that none of those are what the Tarot’s Fool is made of. In the Tarot the Fool is someone who is innocent, and does not look either backwards or forwards, someone overflowing with trust and optimism.

Here a leopard accompanies the Fool. Instead of asking why not a dog, like so many other Fool Cards in the Tarot, I asked why a leopard. My first thought came from the Queen of Wands in the Thoth-Crowley Tarot Deck.

The Queen wears flowing locks of reddish brown hair and is accompanied by a leopard. Legend has it that once upon a time the Queen wore long shining black hair and her companion was a panther. They were purified by their troubles and travels and the queen had flowing golden locks and her panther became a lioness.

The Queen looked back over the path she had travelled and her heart was so moved by those people that were still struggling that she chose to remain where she was instead of continuing on her path, so!  her hair became reddish brown and her constant companion wore the dark spots of a leopard as it too chose to stay and help.

Perhaps this is why the leopard instead of the dog is by the side of the Fool, to be a helper and guide to the Fool.  Or perhaps the Leopard is A Fool from a Previous Journey, who joyously partners the fool.  Together they may symbolise that we are at once The Fool and The World. 

Hrmmmnnnnhhhhh… that sounds like a whole ‘nother post, for another day, perhaps even an author other than myself!!

The Swami

Posted in Doodle-a-day-oh!, Everday Living, Family History, Misspent Youth, Photo Phun, Playin' with my PSP XI, Soul Food Cafe Fun with tags , , , , , , , , on 21/02/2010 by gwenguin1

Last weekend Mum and Matt were not getting along at all. Every time they were together for more than five minutes they started grumbley-grooing at one another.  Aftewr the umpteenth shouting  match Sunday evening I copped an attitude which sent me into helpless fits of the giggles.

I have been talking  with both of them for six years about finding less… ugly ways to deal with their frustration.  Thus far they haven’t listened much.  That is why I copped the following attitude.

The Swami BinkiGwendu

Kiss my enlightened...


Perhaps a little more explanation is in order.  Thirty years ago, before The SImpsons,  Matt Groening had a comic strip entitled “Life In Hell” that my brothers and I adored.  One of our favourites was when the central character, Binky the Bunny copped an attitude.  He swirled his ears into a turban and pronounced, “I am the Swami Binkynandu, kiss my enlightened ass.”

Of course Jim, Matt, and I adored this.  We went so far as to cut the original comic out of the New Times Weekly and save it.  This was one of many, as well as some of ‘Ernie Pook’s Comeek’.  So when I copped my attitude last week it was Binky the Bunny who inspred me to illustrate my mood.

My Shopping List of Art Supplies

Posted in Blogging Memes, Doodle-a-day-oh!, Everday Living, Reviews and Previews, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , , , , , , on 29/01/2010 by gwenguin1

I get to go shopping for new art supplies next week and I would like to know what kind of colored penciles art the best.  I have used prisims, are there better ones out there?  What is the best kind of markers?  Where is the best place to buy these? I do mostly odd, unusual type stuff, especially faces, but not real-looking,  more cartoony.  I mostly have sharpies and cheap markers.  What else can you not live without for drawing supplies?  What about watercolor penciles.?

Thanks for the help,

Carolyn H.

One of the ladies from Soul Food sent out these questions earlier today, and I thought the wisest answer would be on my blog, so she can add it to her favourites amd refer to it at any time.

First, I am partial to the Prismacolors for sharp-edged colouring, they hold the point well, and the colour can be applied evenly, and will blend a bit with application of a blending stick.  Granted the less ‘forgiving’ a medium is the more I like it.  The Crayola coloured pencils are good for laying down a base colour layer to put your details over.  And I would recommend a can of Workable fixatif, as well as some fine sandpaper to keep your Blending Sticks clean and pointed.

Markers are sadly, limited and limiting.  Because they dry so quickly, they don’t make a uniform layer without a great deal of poring over, and working in a demented degree of pointillism; there  is not much ‘blending’ that happens, just some bleary mushy-paperness.  They could work well with a dry-paper watercolour work.

I have Sharpies, and they are as good of a watercolour pen as your going buy.   They have a lovely shelf life, as well as tons of tint, and blend well with other media, i.e. watercolour and pen-and-ink.  Again we’re talking about the dry paper watercolour work.

I keep a range of charcoal and graphite pencils, there don’t seem to be too many producers of quality ones out there, I have been using  General’s ‘Kimberly’  for over 30 years and I have very little problem getting what I want out of them.  I also keep a broad selection of coloured chalk, the wee pillars of charcoal in all of the  B values, lots of black and white charcoal, and the graphites in a range of H values.  Again, blending sticks, sandpaper, and Workable Fixatif is a must.  That gives you a non-smudge base for adding details.  When I do pencil work I add a spray of fixatif up to five or six times before I say, “Enough.”

My #1 tool for drawing is my Conté coloured charcoal pencils.  They are a tad delicate so I don’t consider them portable, but they can stay home and keep on doing what they’re wonderful for, detail work on a coloured chalk base.

Watercolour pencils… Watercolour is actually my favourite media.  I have played with watercolours for over 35 years and I am totally committed to Rexel Derwent watercolour pencils.  They’re pricey, but the investment shows in the quality of your finished product.  They work excellently with the tubes of watercolour paint, and have the most amazing colour, not smudgy or murky, but clear and consistently the same colour.  I have been using my present set for about 20 years, and I only need to replace two or three of them.

One thing to never skimp on, what you are putting your artwork on.  Your work won’t looks its best if it is on corasible bond typing paper.  I like a softly ‘toothed’ watercolour paper for watercolours and acrylics, and real canvases for oils.  Nothing else has the right feel for me.

Ialso keep an old fashioned fountain pen with a variety of nibs in sizes from Crowquill to Extra-Bold Calligrapher’s and a bottle of India Ink.  I enjopy the confidence one must have to work in ink.  Good ink does not erase or get covered over well, if at all.

As far as where to buy them, any art supply or crafting store should carry all of these goodies.  I have found a few gently-used goodies at second-hand stores, but not enough to count on it as a source.  I have found the drawing charcoals, charcoal pencils, and coloured charcoals at Wal-Mart, and I’m sure it could be found in most of the department Stores.

*gasp!* Two posts in one week!!

Posted in Everday Living, Poetry, Soul Food Cafe Fun with tags , , , , , on 29/01/2010 by gwenguin1

At the same time that Shiloh ( ) dared me to write the Japanese forms she also shared a writing prompt from

Soul Food Cafe’s ( ) 

Anita Marie Moscoso ( ). 

I have played with the idea of a wicked garden and below is the poem I wrote from the prompt.  I hope you enjoy it.



In my wicked garden

Mandrake roots twist,

Silent cries of delight.

Poppies bloom in riotous

Red, labile and ready

Bleeding somnolence.

Fairy fingers in purple

Lavender and pink,

Brown freckled petals.

Wolfsbane blooms,

Eerily white under

The soaring full moon.

Throughout my wicked garden

Are hidden bowers,

Sanctuaries for lovers.

Trellised roses bloom

Madly open to the sun

White, yellow, and red.

Bougainvillea riots,

Untrimmed and untamed,

Passionate pink blooms.

Beneath their branches,

Beds of petals await

The dreams of lovers.

Found in my wicked garden

Love apples ripen

Hues of green and red.

Beyond the statues of

Bare limbs twining

In passionate embrace.

The perfume of blossoms

Night Blooming Jasmine

Floats through the senses.

Crickets romancing the

Ladies with their song

Their instrument is their legs.

I plant my wicked garden

By the rising of the moon

Watered well with desire.

Plants are fed through

Caresses and soft sighs

The dance of romance.

Unpruned, and left to

Grow as it will

Not tame or precise.

The garden grows with

The speed of love,

And flavours of dreams.

Shiloh Dared Me!!

Posted in Everday Living, My Inspirations, Old Deep Roots, Poetry with tags , , , , , , , on 24/01/2010 by gwenguin1

My friend Shiloh, a lot of you know Shiloh, dared me to write some forms of Japanese  poetry after I told her that I do not write good verse poetry.  I don’t class the Japanese forms in with verse poetry  because they follow different forms and philosophies the European-based poetic forms.  So here are the poems I did write, using the Senryu, Tanka, and Lanturne forms of Japanese poetry.

Senryu 1:

 Cat’s pawprints

Cross the floor

He’s on the hunt.


Senryu 2

Aching toes

Reach Heaven

With my dancing.


Tanka 1

 Laughter in symbols

Sorrow in harsh silences

Hope does not spring here

Love’s petals are withered, sere

Dreams do not flourish down here.



Lanturne 1




When it’s not sought.


Lanturne 2



Coils twining

Devours the Light.


These are my attemnpts, you can find Shiloh’s at  I hope you enjoy them, and find some inspiration in them.

My Holiday Spell for You

Posted in Everday Living, My Inspirations, Old Deep Roots, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , , , on 23/12/2009 by gwenguin1

I offer you Solstice Greetings

of love, peace, and abiding

joy.  Whatever Holiday

you celebrate this time of the

year, I wish you the best of

 everything, now and always.


 I wish for all of you a

lifetime of loving

and being loved.  I

pray you will

always have faith,

and a friend that

understands you. 


 May the God and Goddess

bless you with everything

you need in the coming

year and may you

always know

the benefits of faith.   


 I wish you a future full

of laughter and Light. 

May your family be many

and  your enemies few.


I may not be able to give

everyone precious to me

a Christmas gift,

but I can tell them h

how much I value them

and their friendship. 


Through the past 4 1/2

years you have

inspired, trusted, supported,

loved, scolded and

bossed me around.  


I cannot imagine a life

without you, for it would

be grey indeed.  In the 

brittle blackness of depression

you have become stars and

constellations, that delight

and comfort me. 


Each morning it is a

wee bittie easier to

choose to seek out joy

instead of sorrow. 

Every day it is a little

easier to live because of

your presence in my life.


I am here to thank you

for every second of it.  You

have helped me grow

as a person and a spirit,

as well as a creative being. 

So, my dear E-family/friend

I send you the

gift of appreciation.

Happy Holidays,

Thank you,

Now and Forever,


Rockers’ Twelve Days of Christmas

Posted in Everday Living, Family History, Misspent Youth, Poetry, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , , on 12/12/2009 by gwenguin1

The Rockers’ 12 Days of Christmas


On the first Day of Christmas

My Rock Star

Gave to me,

One Backstage Pass.


On the second day of Christmas

My Rock Star

Gave to me,

Two pedals Wah-Wahing,


One Backstage Pass.



On the third day of Christmas

My Rock Star

Gave to me,

Three guitarists strumming,

Two pedals Wah-Wahing,


One Backstage Pass.


On the fourth day of Christmas,

My Rock Star

Gave to me,

Four bassists rumbling,

Three guitarists strumming,

Two pedals Wah-Wahing,


One Backstage Pass.


On the fifth Day of Christmas,

My Rock Star

Gave to me,

Five golden songs,

Four bassists rumbling,

Three guitarists prancing,

Two pedals Wah-Wahing


One Backstage Pass.


On the sixth day of Christmas,

My Rock Star

Gave to me,

Six groupies flirting,

Five golden songs,

Four bassists rumbling

Three guitarists playing,

Two pedals Wah-Wahing,


One Backstage Pass.


On the seventh Day of Christmas

My Rock Star gave to me,

Seven Interviews, boring,

Six groupies flirting,

Five golden songs,

Four bassists rumbling,

Three guitarists strumming,

Two pedals Wah-Wahing,


One Backstage Pass.


On the eighth Day of Christmas,

My Rock Star

Gave to me,

Eight giant amps humming,

Seven Interviews, boring,

Six groupies flirting,

Five golden songs,

Four bassists rumbling,

Three guitarists strumming,

Two pedals Wah-Wahing,


One Backstage Pass.



On the ninth Day of Christmas

My Rock Star

Gave to me,

Nine Roadies bustling,

Eight giant amps humming,

Seven Interviews, boring,

Six groupies flirting,

Five golden songs,

Four bassists rumbling,

Three guitarists strumming,

Two pedals Wah-Wahing,


One Backstage Pass.


On the tenth Day of Christmas,

My Rock Star

Gave to me,

Ten Sold-Out Shows,

Nine Roadies bustling,

Eight giant amps humming,

Seven Interviews, boring,

Six groupies flirting,

Five golden songs,

Four bassists rumbling,

Three guitarists strumming,

Two pedals Wah-Wahing,


One Backstage Pass.


On the eleventh Day of Christmas

My Rock Star

Gave to me,

Eleven drummers drumming,

Ten Sold-Out Shows,

Nine Roadies bustling,

Eight giant amps humming,

Seven Interviews, boring,

Six groupies flirting,

Five golden songs,

Four bassists rumbling,

Three guitarists strumming,

Two pedals Wah-Wahing,


One Backstage Pass.


On the twelfth Day of Christmas

My Rock Star

Gave to me,

Twelve dead stars, resurrecting,

Eleven drummers drumming,

Ten Sold-Out Shows,

Nine Roadies bustling,

Eight giant amps humming,

Seven Interviews, boring,

Six groupies flirting,

Five golden songs,

Four bassists rumbling,

Three guitarists strumming,

Two pedals Wah-Wahing,


One Backstage Pass.


A New Way to Listen

Posted in Everday Living, Misspent Youth, Reviews and Previews, Stuff And Nonsense, The Soundtrack Of My Life with tags , , , , , , , , , on 12/12/2009 by gwenguin1

I know Christmas hasn’t arrived yet, but my Mum has given me one of my gifts early, actually my brother and I both got the same gift, and we got it early.  Anyone who has read my babbles for any time knows that my family are audio-and-videophiles, Matt and I have walls in our room that are pretty much filled by our stereo and television systems, which are hooked together via our DVD players.

The gift we both got was a new turntable for enjoying our vintage and new vinyl, this one however connects to a pc as well as to a component stereo system; I can hardly wait to do that- be connected to both!  

We got our hands on the Ion TTUSB10 from Costco.  This is the second time we have found a technical toy at Costco about two years before it is advertised to the general market.

I first checked the sound reproduction through my pc, and that is surprisingly good, and full of the depth and breadth usually reserved for CD players or turntables connected to stereos.  Granted my pc has a pair of Altec Lansing speakers for pc with a subwoofer connected to it. 

The Ion turntable’s performance and sound quality is close to the same as my other turntable, a Technics SL-Q200 that has been my workhorse from the early 80’s through today.

I have been favourably impressed by my new turntable’s ease of use and installation.  Less than an hour from the time I opened the box, I had it connected to my system and ready to go.  Unfortunately the hour had already grown too late to play with settings, so the next day I went at it again, with a refreshed mind, and changed the necessary settings. 

I then took the time to register the turntable and software, which includes I-Tunes. And found that the only way you will get left and right sides when you record is to register the software.  So… fully registered, and working in stereo I spun my first platter.

What did it sound like?  Matt popped his head in my room and went to Mum to tell her, “It sounds like a stereo Ma!!  Yeah, that’s from Gwen’s computer!!”.  I was sitting there with shivers on my arms because the sound wasn’t at all expected.

I had heard that the pc turntables offered near-Mp3 sound quality.   The sound quality I got was closer to DBx sound reduction to a metal cassette. The I-Tunes software converted all of my music to their format, and that improved the sound quality of all previously recorded music whether in Mp3 or WAV format.

Now, I’ve already talked about vinyl being back into vogue, and the difference in sound, so we don’t need to cover that ground again.  What I do want to talk about is where I get some of my best vinyl from, there is a series of stores across the Valley and beyond that sell quality new and used vinyl, CDs and DVD’s as well as some of the neatest extra goodies you’d want to find.

That is Zia  Records, with locations in Phoenix, Tucson and Las Vegas.  The Zia we visit regularly is at Dobson Rd. and Chandler Blvd..  Of all of the record stores we frequent, this store and location boasts the friendliest staff, the widest selection, and great offers.  They also have an E-Zine that I subscribe to.

They have in stock, replicas of the Leg Lamp from “A Christmas Story”, posters, books on music, and exotic incenses to match your every mood, and gifts for music lovers of all ages.  I think they are the only place that one can find Beeman’s Gum (remember that one kiddie-ohs?).

So, if you’re in the Valley of the Sun, and you are looking for some awesome vinyl, or CDs hit your nearest Zia records to find what you’re looking for and more.

In the Arms of Hestia

Posted in Everday Living, Family History, Hestia's Hearth, Old Deep Roots, Soul Food Cafe Fun with tags , , , , , on 01/11/2009 by gwenguin1

My throat was closing tight, and oxygen was getting scarce.  I itched in places that sent shivers of fear through me.  Yet, I couldn’t give in to the fear, not there, not anywhere.  I am the strong one, the calm one who can always be counted on to cover for everybody else.  Why should I go to the people who won’t even let me finish a sentence, never mind shut up and listen?


So I go to the one place, and to the people I know will listen.  I can trust them to care, I have trusted them with my deepest sorrows, and my quiet joys and they have loved me the same, and supported me no matter what I have or haven’t done.  And now they have gifted me with a safer place, seated at the hearth of my favourite Goddess, Hestia-


She is the One who warms the home, and guides the children, the One that feeds everyone happily and impartially, and takes pride in the homeliest of tasks.  The One Woman who can find happiness in a sink of dirty dishes, and the laundry to be folded and put away.  The All-Mother who makes sure everyone has their vitamins, and warm dry slippers.


You will see her hand in rows of home-canned food, patchwork quilts, crocheted afghans, and daintily embroidered handkerchiefs.  You will hear her in the songs that echo of family, and shared laughter.


It is to her I turn.  She is brimming over with comfort and love, in her arms I can admit the fear and helplessness that gripped me when I struggled for breath, and knew how bad I was getting; even though those around me doubted that what I felt was real. 


She has the most comforting tones of my mother’s voice

(happy memories in my heart),

The soul-borne empathy

(we understand one another so well)

Of my brother Matt, and the ineffable

Ability to awaken my mischief

(necessary for someone of my moody nature)

Like my brother Jim.


And yet, nothing like them at the same time, Hestia carries the wisdom of always watching those around her with a protective eye- but is it She who teaches us that Parents must let their Children fly or fall on their own eventually, or they will never believe in themselves, nor trust themselves to weather difficult life-lessons.


She is also the one to remind us that our sorrows make us one with everyone around us, and our kindnesses will make us welcome to all who have been touched by us.  And yet, it is no exaggeration to speak of the She-Bear protecting her cubs, or the Lionesses in a pride mothering one another’s litters. 


She’s the one that gets up at Midnight to check on restless sleepers, and quiet little coughs.  The one who rises first, to start coffee and breakfast for a family that overflows bloodlines.


She is the keeper of family histories, and the funny, naughty things that dignified elders did in their youth.  She will show you pictures of people you will never meet, and tell you they are family.


It is wrapped in her love, warmed by her protection, and strengthened by her belief in me that I am become my best.  She is the Teacher, Care Taker, Feeder, Nurturer, Taker of Temperatures, Maker of Treats, and She Whose Kiss Makes All Things Better.


Portrait of a Witch

Posted in Everday Living, Family History, My Inspirations, My Soapboxes, Old Deep Roots with tags , , on 31/10/2009 by gwenguin1

If you saw a real witch, would you know that she is a witch? Do you believe that she’ll be ancient and ugly with bad skin and warts? Or would she be like everyone else you meet in your travels? Or would there be an indefinable something that would identify her as a witch? 


 A real witch, a practitioner of Wicca, will look like anyone you might meet on the street. She will buy the same kind of clothes; she will have many of the same items in her grocery cart as you will. 


 So, how do you identify a witch, not the Halloween caricature, but a real witch?  Look at her character- that will show her Wiccan traditions. She will be the woman who is kind to everyone and chooses to not judge by race or faith. She will walk gently on our Mother Earth, and celebrate the seasons and natural wonders of the planet.  


 A witch will be tolerant of and accepting of all other faiths. Real witches are not Satanists. Most Wiccan sects worship a God and Goddess; the God sports deer horns and represents the Masculine Archetype, while the Goddess is usually a three-faced Goddess (Maiden, Mother, and Crone), which represents the Feminine Archetype.  


 Wicca seeks a balance between positive and negative energies. True Wiccans do not hex or curse people, a witch’s every action is chosen to cause the least harm to everyone and everything around the witch. In truth, the evolved witch will do what is right simply because it is the right thing to do, with no thought of ‘Eternal Reward’ or ‘Karma’.   The right thing to do is the action that causes the least harm in both the short- and long-term.  The witch’s aim is to create balance and calm both within herself and in her surroundings.  


 Wiccans don’t seek revenge; seek a non-destructive way to express ‘negative’ emotions.   Wicca honours forgiveness and understanding. 


Individual witches are at different points on their path of Spiritual Growth the same as people of other faiths. Wicca accepts that some of the people who have travelled further on their path will consciously choose to remain at that level, to help those still learning to advance on their personal path. 


Witches will be naturally trusted by children, animals and wounded spirits, and are known for the comfort of their homes. Some witches have the reputation of being the one everyone comes to when they need to feel better. Other witches might be known for their ability to energise and inspire.


Wicca does not expect a new member to deny the faith they already have; witchcraft, all of Hollywood’s ideas aside, is a gentle, nature-based faith, that supports the individual, and celebrates the differences of culture and faith.

The ABC’s of Halloween

Posted in Critter Tails, Everday Living, Family History, Misspent Youth, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , on 31/10/2009 by gwenguin1

A: Actions to suit the month, whether it be wearing costumes or watching your spooky favourites for the umpteenth time. ‘Tis time for buying some new horror films, stock up on munchies and soda, and settle in to scare yourself silly.

B: The Bean Sidhe, wailing her warning across the Emerald Isle and far beyond. Like all good legends she has cried across the planet, and people who have never been to Erin’s Green hills know her name.

C: Cats, especially black ones with eyes like steady flames, arching and hissing in the dark. Their lithe movements on silent paws, and delicate whiskers are full of the grace of a true predator

D: Darkness, darkness, surrounding you and hiding what could be after you. Oohh what shadows can become when you add just a little imagination to the mix!

E: Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeks, and plenty of them, the closer we get to Halloween night, the more there is. From horrible masks and stage blood to gauze-wrapped mummies, there is plenty to shriek at.

F: Fear, shivering along your nerve trunks and roiling slowly in your belly. Nibbling your fingernails and shakin’ in your shoes at the drive-in scary- still the best way to see a movie.

G: “…ghosties and ghoulies, and other horrors that we carry from our childhood and teen years. Every Town U.S.A.’s The Ghost of Mr. _____, The Killer on ________ Road, Ghostly Hitchhiker, and other urban legends to share with the next generation of locals.

H: Halloween, the night we all wait for, when we play at being something else, and blow off our diets for ‘just a couple days’. Will there be a full moon? Should the kids wear sweaters under their costumes? Maybe we should just throw a party here instead of trick-or-treating. When I was a kid-kid that was the awfullest of sacrileges!!

I: Ideas, the kind that get stuck in your brain and repeat mindlessly. Like… If you look at it this way doesn’t that grain pattern in the bathroom door look just like a werewolf stalking you? And there’s another one, and further up a third werewolf growing out of the wood!

J: Jack-O-Lantern, the iconic grinning pumpkin, hollowed out and carved to frighten away the restless, unhappy spirits. The first ones were hollowed turnips, and held a wee candle. Today you can buy pre-carved faux Jacks-O-Lanterns…. Ick.

K: Killers, psychotic and otherwise that have films released at this time of year. Michael Myers in Haddonfield (no relation to moi) is still going strong after 30 years. So is Freddy Krueger, and Jason Voorhees, and there is always the killer du jour being touted at the theatre.

L: Little Green Men, exiting their spaceships with evil intent, and super-weapons to destroy us with. Whether it be Martians, the Pod People, Klingons, ET, the Drakkon or H. R. Giger’s sleekly deadly creature of Ridley Scott’s “Alien”, aliens can be counted upon to supply all sorts of interesting twists

M: Monsters!! Like the Mummy, Werewolf, and Count Dracula, creeping up to the newest ones. The classics didn’t scare me, I thought Dracula was the coolest, the Wolfman’s howl set my pulses racing, and to be a Mummy, surely it must be bliss to a Mummy.

N: Necromancy- the Black Art, and its practitioner, the Necromancer. There will always be the bad seed, how can we choose to serve the good if we don’t know what the bad is? Seeing the glimpses of a psychotic killer’s life would surely cure one of self-pity.

O: Overnight parties, piled into a bed with family and friends, scaring yourself silly with one horror film after another. There is always the one who will, if dared enough, go outside and make that scary noise from the show we wasn’t apposed’ta watch outside the girls’ bedroom window.

P: Popcorn Balls, wrapped loosely in plastic wrap, made by hand the day of the celebration. They are best fresh from the kitchen, hot and buttery, their scent finding every corner of your house.

Q: Queer ideas, that circle ‘round your brain a-widdershins, shadows in a private balefire of madness. I wonder if you could get rid of a body with pool acid? How nasty does oleander taste? I wonder if someone could really kill a person with fish filter charcoal?

R: Rotting corpses that are always left where the unsuspecting townspeople will be sure to find them. Not one of the victims in the ‘slasher’ movies is given a decent burial. Nope, they just hang around and decompose!

S: Scary Decorations-and Haunted Houses to shriek your way through. From Hospital X-rays’ bats made from old films, to the charmingly lopsided older child’s’ first pumpkin carving attempt.

T: Tombstones- old and new, bidding the dear departed to Rest In Peace, instead of haunting us. The neat rows of a new graveyard, with flat plaques on the ground look desolate, while the genteel, wandering grace of 19th century Cemeteries announce their place in the cycle of life proudly.

U: Undead, the drinkers of Blood, pointed of tooth and pallid of aspect. They stalk our sleeping hours away. Blessed with so many facets by their Dark Gift, and cursed to never see a sunrise or sunset.

Villains: Whether it be ‘Pinhead’, “Hannibal Lecter’ or the Blob, the villains are always lurking in the shadows. The bad guy lurks in our subconscious always ready to take over our rationality. W:

Werewolves, howling, and hunting their prey under a cold, uncaring full moon. You know them, the pack that lives in the wild places near your home. Have you ever felt the pull of their hunting song? Your soul has wanted to sing back to them, I can see it in your eyes.

 X: Extra-scary, the scenes in the movies where we jump and scream, then laugh shamefacedly; or worse, crawl into bed with Mum for security. That scene that sends your worst fears gibbering mindlessly your mind, yes… that one.

Y: Yelling, “Trick or Treat, Trick or Treat, Give me something good to eat!” And then later, happily swapping candy with your siblings and friends. How many hours have been spent in happy arguments over the benefits of Mounds over Milky Way, or plain M&Ms versus Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups?

Z: Zombies- Groaning and lurching their way into your subconscious, hungry for living flesh, and brains. They are comical in a mindless, appetite-driven sort of way… I think….

More Halloween News

Posted in Everday Living, Reviews and Previews, Scaddy Kiddies, Soul Food Cafe Fun with tags , , , on 27/10/2009 by gwenguin1

Halloweenshire Times



 Louann Garou


Halloween is less than a week away, and all the Hostess’ with the Mostess’ are getting together prizes for their Halloween Bash Games. This year some of the Hostess’ were generous enough to share their favourite games.


The most famous Hostess is none other than ‘Mina Dracul author of the best-selling “Fangs of Destiny”. Mina’s family delights in the ever-popular “Pop Goes the Zombie”; they play it regularly with delighted guests.


Apparently, the Zombies are all volunteers, I wondered why a Zombie would volunteer for this game, and Mina explained that Zombies continue to decompose and eventually all their teeth will fall out, at which point they would starve to death. So those Zombies are the grateful volunteers for “Pop Goes the Zombie”.


Elsa L. Stein, wife of the prominent Dentist Frank N. Stein, are famous for their rowdy rounds of “Musical Coffins”, I have personally witnessed the consequences of a dybbuk and a dragon fighting over the remaining coffin. That incident was the cause of the controversial ‘No use of fire allowed’ ruling of 80 years ago.


Elsa has the thoughtfulness to have made special coffins for the game that are easy to get in and out of and are still sturdy; best of all, Elsa says, is that they stack neatly when not in use.


The Poulter-Geist family delight in “Hide and Go Shriek”, Paula Yakkity Poulter-Geist, the renowned architect, designed their home to be full of cubbies and hiding places. Their large, rowdy family often have their games ended on account of daylight.


Another perennial favourite is the primary coffin class game of “Spook, Spook, Ghost”; this game delights wee ghosties of all ages. This game has easy-to-remember rules, and the potential for all sorts of personalised variants.


The Poulter-Geist family often does this over their graves, and the Zombies bounce aimlessly off another until the last zombie that hasn’t been bounced is declared the winner.


My own family loves a busy round of “Pin The Tail On The Werewolf”, and yes, the clips that hold the tails in place are patented. We’re working on variants for all of the Halloweenish species.


As our pack has slowly grown, we’ve had to add more tails as well as add the “No Double-Tailing Rule” of 1935. Now there are enough of us we can each have 20 tails, and not tail every member of the pack. We’ve also added different colours and some colour schemes so every pack member has different tails.


Other Halloweenshire favourites are the “Reverse Hangman” with fresh corpses. “Bobbing for Organs”, and “Spin The Poison Bottle”.

Hadley Happenings, Pt. I

Posted in You can do these! on 24/10/2009 by gwenguin1

Kids, I think you’re old enough now to learn about the history of our town.  About 150 years ago, Old Benton Hadley came here to build a dream; his dream was of a gracious, idyllic town near the university, jobs and hospitals.  Back then the University was a Teacher’s College, with the farms nearby, a lake full of fish and waterfowl, miles and miles of wood to be logged, and the state’s first real hospital.

The hospital was the finest one for five states around!  It had a modern, sterile surgery, a safe place for mothers to have their babies, everything was as new, and high-falutin’ as Old Man Hadley could make it.  Back then, there wasn’t a name for men like Hadley, nobody called a man who could turn everything he touched an entrepreneur.  He started with one wagon, and the cider mill.  He began to buy up land along the river, one small parcel at a time; until he had enough for a small city.

He started the Teacher’s College, and built the Grange Hall down on Main and Washington; just like it stands today… except back then there were buggies and saddled horses, not all them noisy automobiles.  He brought in a real Minister, and built that Evangelical Christian Church, the one that’s a monument to Old Benton Hadley nowadays.  Then he built one of the finest schools and libraries in the state.  People were beginning to move here, and telling their kin and friends about the town of Hadley.

Old Man Hadley had wanted to call this place New Eden, but when the time to name his dream came, the grateful residents voted him down… everyone but Hadley himself voted to name the town after the man that had built so much, and given so much back to the people that helped his dream grow.  The town survived the War Between the States, famines, droughts, World War I, the Great Depression, and World War II without losing any of its old-fashioned charm.  The farmhouses of the first families were put on The Historic Register over ten or so years, so Main Street always looked like one of those Currier and Ives woodcuts.

The first hospital was torn down and a new, modern one replaced it, attached to the University, which now had darn good medical, nursing, and law schools.  The doctors that came out of that hospital were known to be some of the best doctors around.  About 15 miles down the road from Hadley, they built another hospital, encased in chain-link and barbwire, with Guards and dogs, and you had to show a permit to get through those towering ironwork gates.  That is the State Hospital for the Criminally Insane.

Things started to change here in Hadley, the ‘Founding Families’ moved on, and their big, fancy houses were turned into Nursing Homes, them fancy-schmansy Bed-and-Breakfast places for snooty tourists, Museums, Antique Shops, and even a place that told the cards and the crystal ball upstairs with all manner of things downstairs and in the basement.

Now the witch that owned it didn’t look like any movie witch, she leaned over the fence and gossiped with her neighbours.  Everybody loved her specialty teas, and she made desserts that had even the most persnickety of them skinny models comin’ back for more.  There was even movie stars come all the way from Hollywood to have her back up things for their fancy parties.  She even had the Governor ask for her tea-cakes come Christmas!!

Anyhow, she tried to warn us about bad things comin’ our way, and we didn’t listen.  Nossir, we patted her hand and called her a worrywart.  Told her not to take on so, they might take her to that Big Crazy House.  I dunno what made her stay; I’m glad she did though.  Even after what happened to her when that fella escaped from the Big Crazy House.

First any of the people in Hadley knew of it was when there were so many State Troopers roamin’ around the county they were like leaves on a maple tree!!  They asked us to voluntarily agree to a sundown curfew.  Of course we disagreed, the new movies were opening at the drive-in, and one of three movies was an Elvis musical!!!

They told us there was a chance that a patient had gotten out of the State Hospital and they wanted to be sure we were safe.  We pooh-poohed them and laughed as we asked, “How much damage can one crazy man do?”

If’n we had known who was on the loose, we would’ve all been locked up snug in our houses, Elvis musical be damned!!  They didn’t tell us, for fear of a panic; if we had known it was ‘Hungry Harry’… well!! “Hungry Harry” had led the police, State Troopers and The Feds on a merry chase through a half-dozen states before they finally tracked him down, already sucking all the blood out of another victim.

Hungry Harry thought he was a vampire, like in the old Bela Lugosi movies, and he would go to some kind soul’s door asking for some food in exchange for doin’ chores.  He would work for them for a few days, always polite and respectful.  He never cussed in front of womenfolk, told bad jokes where young’uns might hear, went to Church every Sunday, and paid a handsome tithe when he had money.

You’d have thought Harry was a good, God-fearin’ man down on his luck… If’n you didn’t know his story.

Anyways, they did catch him, prove that he had killed nigh onto forty people, and drank all their blood before they caught him and slapped him into that hospital sayin’ he was too crazy to know what he’d done.  Hell!!!  Beg pardon folks.  He knew all right, he just spun a good yarn for the head doctors is all.  Sorry if I sound bitter, I can explain that later.

Now I was tellin’ you kids about the witch that lived here, and how she was good people and nobody was afraid of her.  She had this big old dog, one of them Great Danes; he was all black and worshipped his owner.  When she would work in her flower and herb gardens he would sit by her and watch every move she made, tail wagging ever so slightly. 

If she was on the porch, with her lemonade and a paper, he’d lie next to her; every so often she would drop her hand to his head and scratch his ears gentle-like.  His tail would start thumpin’ on that porch like a big old kettle drum and he’d lick her hand before he would go back to sleep.

The dog slept by her bed at night, and went with her almost everywhere she went.  We all worried about what she might do when she lost that dog, and we knew she would.  Them big dogs don’t live as long as they ought, and the witch weren’t hardly 40.

Well… that Hungry Harry escaped slick as you please from the State Hospital and started lookin’ for blood again.

The witch was sleeping so peacefully in her big old bed with handmade quilts on it and them pretty curtains she had woven herself on the windows over the shutters she had painted a nice robin’s egg blue.  The dog was sleeping on the floor next to her, snoring just the littlest bit.

The witch got woke up sometime in the night, by a dripping noise and a funny creak.  She slipped her hand out from under the quilts and the dog licked it like he always did.  Nice and reassured she went back to sleep, and dreamed whatever witches dream.

Come morning she got bright and early to cut flowers for the shut-ins and herbs for her medicines.  “Eleazar?”  She called her dog, who wasn’t laying on the floor on his big rag rug.

She whistled him up, and still he didn’t come.  Now she was getting worried, that dog never left her side.  She looked through that whole big house, calling and whistling, her face getting sadder with ever whistle.

Finally, she thought she’d take his leash and go look for him, wondering if he had nuzzled the door open and gone out to ‘do his business’.  The leash wasn’t on the hook by the kitchen door like it was supposed to be.  Now she was getting really frightened and ran out the back door.

There was her big dog, dead, hanging from a porch rafter by his leash that creaked ever so slightly in the breeze.  That tongue hung limp from his mouth, and the blood dripped, slowly from the end of his tongue.

She commenced to screaming, she sounded just like a bean sidhe right out of Ireland.  When the nieghbours started arriving the poor lady was crying and trying to get that dog down all by her self.

Everyone wondered who would do that to her dog, he was the kind that might lick you to death, but never deliberately hurt you.  Some of the men got her dog untied, while her lady friends tried to comfort and calm her down.  These fellers that had fought the Krauts and Nips in WWII were teary eyed as they brought that dog down and laid him carefully on the ground.  They took turns diggin’ a grave for him, as they did that, the witch was taken inside and given some of her own tea to calm her down.  I remember, Herm Nestor’s wife… what was her name???  Anyway, she commenced to scrubbing the porch where blood was splattered Hell, West and Crooked.  I do apologise ladies.

She musta been there for nigh onto three hours scrubbing and scrubbing, with a stiff brush and lye soap before them stains were almost gone.  That poor girl’s hands were raw for almost a week from doin’ that, but she said that she couldn’t let the witch have to clean that up, finding the dog was bad enough.

A few days passed by and the killing of the witch’s dog was settling down.  The witch kept telling us that Eleazar (Who names a dog that anyway?) was just the beginning, that it would get worse.  Everyone thought it was the shock of finding her dog like that that had her so upset.

Until them kids down on Apple Tree Lane that is…

The Hadley Happenings, Pt. II

Posted in Misspent Youth, Scaddy Kiddies, Soul Food Cafe Fun with tags , , , on 20/10/2009 by gwenguin1

Now, lookin’ around I can see some faces that didn’t hear about the Witch and her poor dog. I’m sure any of the others’ll be more than happy to tell you the tale later. I’m not here to be repeating myself.


The Witch told us things were gonna get worse, we should have believed her, but we thought is was her grief talkin’. Like they say, hindsight is always 20/20. Things hadn’t even quietened down from that dog, and more dogs started showin’ up dead, or not showin’ up at all. The town went awful quiet after the dogs was silenced.


Dogs that should have been playin’ fetch, guarding their Master’s home, or catching bad guys were bein’ mourned every day. After the dogs were mostly gone, except for some little puppies, the cats started disappearin’. They lasted a little longer, but eventually all the cats that had sat in laps, chased a piece of yarn, and loved their person hade been buried under rosebushes, and mourned just like the dogs.


Yes, the Witch stayed, even though she knew how bad things were gonna get. She knew she’d be needed, she was there to offer comfort, and make a pot of her tea for the ones left behind. Yes, she was there until the bitter end.


I asked her once why she did it. She looked at me with those sad, gentle eyes, and when she spoke her voice sounded so tired, “Because it is the right thing to do.”. I still hear her sayin’ that in my nightmares. After all the dogs and cats were gone people started disappearin’, or dyin’.


I remember the very first human victims of that madman. Nothin’ but a pair of kids really, still in school. It was horrible what happened to them, on the night of the prom too! And here ‘Bubba’ was set on asking his sweetheart to marry him after the prom.


He’d gone so far as to buy a diamond ring, a real pretty one, too. Bubba wasn’t the smartest kid by any road, but he worked hard n studied harder, and always had a smile for everyone. He was joining the Marines, had it all set for after he graduated. Bubba’s sweetheart wasn’t from around here, she came to town to live with her Aunt and Uncle after her parents were killed while they were workin’ with Doctors Without Borders.


Still raw from losing her parents, with an accent, and the faintest little scar from her hare-lip surgery that poor child had Bully-Bait written all over her in big, bloody red letters. The sad thing was that she was always pretty-ish, and her scar made her even cuter, it pulled her mouth up in such a way that she looked like she was ready to laugh out loud.


On her first day of school here the girl, Priscilla-Anne, was so nervous she almost stuttered when she was sayin’ hello to a room fulla strangers. There was an awful bully in her first class, Hank, and he lit into her right off, like a shark that smells blood. Hank was well on his way to makin’ poor Priscilla-Anne cry when Bubba came back from the Nurse’s Office.


Bubba took one look at what was goin’ on and he stood up for Priscilla. From that day on, they were inseperable, even goin’ to church together, and their always held hands. Nothin’ show-offy, or like they owned each other. More like they were two parts of the same star or something.


By the time they were in HIgh School together Prissy and Bubba were destined to be Prom King and Queen, from their very first day as Freshmen. Bubba could have been a great football player, except he were just too gentle. He played baseball and his Home Run record still stands. Yes!! That Bubba!!


He played the trumpet so fine he could bring tears to your eyes when he played “The Star-Spangled Banner”, ot “Amazing Grace”. He never could whistle worth a darn, but he made this buzzy trumpet-noise through his lips all day long. You could always tell what he was trumpetin’. Well, I don’t know what else to call it!!


On the night of the Prom poor Bubba was so nervous that he kept playin these odd little sounds, but when he looked at Prissy he’d start into some Classical piece. His Math teacher asked him what it was, and this plain 18 year old kid says, “Romeo and Juliet Overture” by some fellow by the name of Tchaikovsky.


I heard that song a couple times after that, and I saw bubba and Prissy on the stage, wearin’ their King and Queen crowns of cardboard, gold filligree foil and some shiny crystals in bright colours, smilin’ under all them lights.


Seein’ that hurt so bad I had to stop listening to it. Bubba wasn’t patient, and in a silly, love-struck gesture he got down on his knee on that stage and asked Prissy to marry him. She shrieked like Miss America and hollered “Yes!!” before she threw her arms around his neck and hugged him tight-tight.


It was a wonder that the roof of the gym didn’t fall in in, everyone cheered and clapped that long and loud for them. Well, just like the kids in one of them scary movies, Bubba and Prissy took Bubba’s Daddy’s car and went parkin’, down by Dead Tree River. When they didn’t show up at midnight like they had promised their parents started worryin’, but they trusted their young ones.


It’s true that back then, things were different than they are now; little kids could play outside ‘till sundown and nobody thought a thing of it. Somebody’s Momma was sure to chase all the kids home when they hollered up their own. Heck, back then kids went Trick or Treatin’ on their own, and nobody worried about where they were or who gave ‘em what candy.


Most of the Momma’s knew one another from the PTA, Boy or Girl Scouts, the Library Club, and such-like. Half of the costumes were made by their Mommas to begin with. I remember the one year, Missus Wheeler made her eldest boy into a Mummy by ripping up old, raggedy bed sheets an wrapping around and around her boy.


She did this while she was workin’ at the nursing home. Her man weren’t any good and up and left her for a younger gal, so she was goin’ to school to be a nurse, raisin’ her kids on her own, and working 2 and three part-time jobs to support them.


Anyway, back to Bubba and Prissy, there they were, parked in that battered old Ford his Daddy drove to work, talkin’ about their dreams an’ plans. They didn’t notice ‘till too late that the battery were goin’ dead. When the lights shut down and the music stopped playin’ (Prissy said it was “You Light Up My Life”), they both sat there holdin’ hands and blinkin’.


There were some awful scary noises in the woods, animals huntin’ for their dinner, and animals bein’ dinner; Bubba didn’t think nothing of it, he’d been huntin’ with his Daddy for about ten years, and he knew them woods pretty well. He reassured Prissy that they would be fine, and told her he was goin’ to go Apple Tree road, it weren’t but a half-mile away and every so often they could see the lights from passin’ cars.


Prissy begged him to take her along, or for Bubba to stay with her till morning came around. He patted her hand and kissed her, but he went anyway, not wantin’ to have Prissy out all night. As he walked towards the road she could hear him making that trumpety noise, she said it were “The Teddy Bears’ Picnic”.


Accourse it faded away and Prissy was there by herself, in the dark-dark of the woods, with them noises goin’ on around her and getting’ more scared by the minute. Back then girls just didn’t go campin’ or huntin’ with their Daddies, no more than a boy would take Sewin’ or Home Ec. in school.


She started cryin’ a little bit and then she thought she heard Bubba comin back, because she heard his trumpetin’ far-off and soundin’ kind of funny. It stopped and she was hopin’ that meant that Bubba had found someone to give the car a jump. She snuggled under the car blanket Bubba’s Daddy kept in the back seat, and started thinkin’ about their wedding and how she wanted the whole town to be there, so they could all be as happy as she was.


She said later that she might of fell asleep, and got woke up by this funny chokin’ noise. It seemed like the night had gotten darker, and there was something scratching away on the roof of that old Ford. It weren’t too long and the choking noise went away and there was just that soft ‘skritch skritch’ on the roof and the softest little dripping sound. She couldn’t see a thing through the windows, and wondered if some clouds might of moved in to cover that little scythe of a moon.


Eventually she got lulled to sleep by the skritchin’ and the sound of the wind in the trees, She told me herself, as she was packin’ to move as far away from here as her Aunt and Uncle would go. Next thing she knew, someone was callin’ her name and knockin’ on the car.


She answered the Sheriff and told him they were okay, that Bubba had gone to get a jump ‘cause they’d run the battery in his Daddy’s car dead.


“Prissy, honey, I want you to take my hand when I open the door, follow me and whatever you do, don’t look back.” The door creaked open and the Sheriff’s big ole calloused hand was stuck in. Prissy done what he said, until about halfway to his police car; then she asked where Bubba was, an’ was he all right.


 The Sheriff kind of choked an’ said he’d tell when they was in the car. Prissy stopped dead in her tracks an’ told the Sheriff that she wasn’t goin’ anywhere till she knew that Bubba was okay. The Sheriff almost fell, she were that stubborn, her feet was planted just like a mule’s and her chin stuck out, makin’ her look like one o’ them kitchen witches.


“Where… Is… Bubba?” She snapped, soundin’ an awful lot like a Marine D. I., “I want to know if he’s all right.”


She spun around and started screamin’, by the time they got that poor child to the Doc, her voice was gone and she just sat there, starin’ at nothin’. The Doc gave her somethin’ and she collapsed like a balloon when the air gets out.


Y’see, when poor Prissy turned ‘round, there was Bubba, hangin’, upside down from a tree branch over the car, his throat cut wide open, blood smeared all over that old Ford, and his fingernails skritchin’ just a little on the roof of the car. The worst part was that his lips an’ tongue was gone.


To this day I wonder who was makin’ that trumpet-buzzing that night. The Coroner said that Bubba had died almost as soon as he got outta the car, so he couldn’t of been doin’ it. People say we’re better off not knowin’, an’ they’re right. I saw who did that to Bubba, an’ I’ll never forget, or tell another soul; it was that bad.




Nope, I’m not sayin’ another word, it is getting on to suppertime an’ I hear some o’ your parents callin’ you in to eat. Hurry on home, an’ don’t stop to talk to any strangers.

The Hadley Happenings, Part III

Posted in Everday Living, Misspent Youth, My Inspirations, Scaddy Kiddies, Soul Food Cafe Fun, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , , , on 14/10/2009 by gwenguin1

Well kids, I recognise more of your faces this year. I’m gratified to see you coming back that means I’m doing my job right. Yes, there are still plenty of things happening in Hadley City.  


Jake Masters himself told this one to me.


He was the old, old law here, back before we had city police, staties, and county mounties, and Federales poking on the ground, in the airwaves, and now virtually. 


Yes, even someone as old as I am knows about computers. Maybe I can’t play those complicated joystick games, but I can still read a book and add things up in my head. Can you?”


Now I didn’t come here to be mean to any of you. I came here to tell you about Hadley, and that’s what I’ll do.


Jake Masters was the bartender back then, he kept a wary, worried eye on the man in the corner booth. He had come in alone; bought a bottle of whiskey, then settle in for a preoccupied binge.


The small pale man sat before a length of rope and bottle of whiskey,that was more than half-drunk. He was sunken of eye, sallow of skin, and wrapped in an eerie stillness.


He motioned to Jake Masters, and Jake nodded to the young man he was trainin’ up, and then sat carefully across from the little stranger.


Who was the man he was training?   That was Old Man Walker. Yes!!


I know he died over twenty year ago.


I spoke at his memorial service.


Now, how old I am don’t matter any more. I’m just plain old.


When Jake was standin’ next to the quiet drinker, the feller spoke in a ghost’s voice. “Sit down. Please?” Anyway, the little stranger took another shot off the whiskey like a machine, neatly, without his face changing one bit. When he locked eyes with Jake; Jake swore there was nothing there, just two bottomless pits in a face like a desert.


“M’name’s Cecil and I need ta tell someone this


I used to have a fine life, yessiree-bob, I surely did. Married me up a good, and pretty wife. She took amazin’ care of me, and the choldren we made were all beautiful little girls, seven of ‘em.


Come a winter night we would all gather in the big bed, and my wife would read to us outta the family Bible. She could make those begats sound like the finest fiddlin’ you could ask for. Almost like God’s Choirs of Angels.


 Then the Hard Times started and everything started goin’ bad. Real bad. There was the drought, and no work to be had, people were actually dyin’ of hunger, sittin’ on big spreads of what was supposed to be good farmland- rich and deep. People started movin’ less, spoke little, and cared almost nowt.


Yup, even me, with all eight of the blessings from the Lord I called fambly. A body can only sit and feel your belly eatin’ your backbone for so long, and then he commences to thinking strange. And that’s when bad things get worse.


I was sitting, looking at my pretty girls all get pale, hungry, and there weren’t a damn thing to do. I couldn’t leave, but I couldn’t bear to see them all dyin’ slow-like. I watched my pretty Margie lose all o’ her hair, like spun gold, the colour of autumn wheat when its heavy and ripe.


All the girls except the youngest had Margie’s hair, the straight, shining river of sunshine down their backs. I watched all their hair fall out too, and their rosy, round cheeks went pale and sunk into their skulls, as they got hungrier, and hungrier.


The youngest’ hair? Why our Jezzie Belle’s was shining like a blackbirds’ wing; gleamin’ all the colours of a rainbow. She had eyes that were black, and they went back forever it seemed like. She was always a pale little thing, hated the sun and cried when Mother bathed her.


She loved to hear her Mother sing and would sit there and smile all the while her Momma sang. And wouldja believe, the first word that child learnt was ‘Amen’, imagine that, a baby not yet nine months old sitting in her basket sayin’ Amen’ when there was a church meeting to go to.


When things went bad I started dreadin’ getting up of a morning. I was sure I would see my smallest angel lyin’ there all still and cold. An’ every morning she would be lyin’ there, watching everything from the deeps of her eyes.


No, it were my eldest Susie Anne what went first. I found out later, she was givin’ her food to the younger children, so’s they could keep on growin’. She made sure her Momma et too, seein’ as how Margie was still breast-feedin’ the baby girl. Susie-Ann went in her sleep, lookin’ almost peaceful, if it weren’t for the hunger-scars acrost her face.


I buried her under the last few limbs of the Lilac tree her Momma was growin’ up for her. Even then I couldn’t dig the hole proper-like, the edges weren’t straight, and it tweren’t barely deep enough. Her poor Momma was already too weak to cry, she just had tears runnin’ down her face and leavin’ little dark spots on the thirsty ground.


I kilt the last cow that evening, and made all of my girls promise to eat their food, and not give it all away. All of ‘em swore on the Bible that they would eat their food. And they did eat their own food, little as there was. One night, all we had was broth cooked from a bone a dog wouldn’t chew. There weren’t even a few grains of rice or a woody old turnip to add to the broth, nope, not even salt.


If I coulda cried I woulda, the shame of watchin’ my fambly die when I loved ‘em all so much was that bad.


Then the next eldest gal up and died, and if she’d had anything left coverin’ her bones I swear there woulda been teeth marks in it. As it were, there was some little holes here and there on her skin. But she didn’t bleed none, so I figured she were took by the Hunger too.


Now her Momma couldn’t even go out and see her Terrie Lynn buried, and that were a mercy, there weren’t much more’n two feet of ground over her little body. And the cross was standin’ sidewise, lookin’ drunker’n I was, and all I could do was watch the Blight spread over more and more of Hadley Valley.


Then came the day I had been dreadin’ the worst. Our well dried up; there was no more sweet, cold artesian water to quiet hungry bellies with. Now I had to take the last horse, Ned, who was barely able to stand, to the river for water.


The little bit o meat on poor ol’ Ned fed my children for almost a week, but still the third girl, Becky Marie didn’ wake up of a mornin’. I covered her in stones, and that took me two days to do. Momma didn’t even cry this time; she just lay there, letting the baby girl nurse on her dried-up tit for some comfort.


All through this, the littlest one still thrived, as much as a skinny, pale changeling baby can. Momma was getting’ weaker all the time, and now I prayed no more of my choldren would be sent to Lord, for I surely couldn’t bury ‘em proper, and I didn’t want to watch a dead daughter rot in the same bed she was borned in.


 The Lord wasn’t answerin’ prayers no more, for less than a week later my fourth girl, Linnie Sue, never woke up. She were just as pale and bloodless as the rest. She didn’t weigh no more’n’ a feather pillah and I covered her as best I could with some rocks and slab o’ wood.


Now there was me, Margie an’ our three youngest girls, and two o’ them was getting’ weaker by the minute, and I knew I would be losin’ them soon. That night I couldn’t sleep; there was too many thoughts I had to think; and I had a funny, cold feelin’ creepin’ up from the dark places in my brain.


It were nigh onto sunrise when I saws my youngest rise from her bed and go to the fifth daughter, she patted her face and whispered quiet-like to Annie Lynne, that girl said “Yes.” Clear as a bell, keepin’ her eyes closed tight, and turned her head away from the baby.


That little hell-spawn opened her mouth, latched onto her own sister and stared makin’ these suckin’ noises, like a new litter o’ piglets tastin’ mama’s milk for the first time. When she looked up her eyes were glowin’ like a mad fox caught in lantern light.


Afore I could move, she done the same to her onlyest sister left, and then moved on t’ her own Momma and sucked her dry too. That’s when I knew what I hadta do.


The next night I told that spawn of Lucifer that we was going on an adventure. She seemed happy as can be to hear that. We lit two lanterns and I almost’ crawled to the caverns out on Hadley’s Hill. I led her to the room of pits, far away back in the dirt.


We sat there in the fadin’ light of the lantern and talked. Where I found the words I dunno, I know I prayed one more time to the Lord, and this time he answered my pleas.


I pushed with all my might, 

I pushed with all my love.


I pushed that tiny body

Into the deep, dark pit.


I heard her holler as she fell,

But I never heard her hit.


The next day a gentle, forgivin’ sort o’ rain fell, and kept on fallin’; fallin’ until all the valley were green and growin’ again, and everyone left was getting’ meat on their bones and crops in their fields.”


The little man swallowed the last of his whiskey, and spoke in a chilling whisper.


“I heard her holler as she fell,

But I never heard her hit.


An’ sometimes I dream I turn around and I see them devils eyes o’ hers risin’ outta that pit after me.” Cecil rose in the shadows of the closing bar, thanked Jake softly and walked away with his rope.


They found him, where he had hung himself from the railroad bridge over Hadley River the next mornin’.


Until the day he died, Jake could never forget them words:


“I heard her holler as she fell

But I never heard her hit.”

Halloween News!!

Posted in Blogging Memes, Scaddy Kiddies, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , , , on 12/10/2009 by gwenguin1

Devil Sightings in Area

Green Bay, Wisconsin AP/UPI Over the past year or two there have been numerous sighting of what is known colloquially as the ‘Jersey Devil’ in the area surrounding Green Bay. Cryptozoologist, André Freem theorises that the Devil has come to Wisconsin in search of a mate.


Witnesses to the Devil’s movements report that he doesn’t seem to be as much threatening as intense, and driven. He has been reported in local pubs, and restaurants that are equipped with WiFi, as well as institutions of higher learning.


Apparently women do not need to fear the Devil, unless they try to use their ‘feminine wiles’, as he is resistant to these behaviors and may lash out verbally in response.


Local authorities claim that there have been no reports of violence or aggression in connection to the sightings, and that the Devil appears to be an intelligent and disciplined being.


Any new sightings of the Devil should be reported to 1-800-THE-DEVL (843-3385), this is a local branch of the World-Wide Cryptozoology Organization.

Gotta Have Music!

Posted in Everday Living, Misspent Youth, Reviews and Previews, Soul Food Cafe Fun, Stuff And Nonsense, The Soundtrack Of My Life with tags , , , , on 08/10/2009 by gwenguin1

We can’t have Halloween without appropriate music, and, thanks to a special friend, we have a nice selection of spooky MIDI sequences to choose from.

Adams Family-


Night On Bald Mountain-




Black Sabbath-



Diary of a Madman-












Graveyard Symphony-






Haunted Mansion 1-7-


Monster Mash-






Scissor Hands-




Tales from the Crypt-


Twiglight Zone-





Decorate your Computer for Halloween

Posted in Doodle-a-day-oh!, Everday Living, Misspent Youth, Photo Phun, Playin' with my PSP XI, Scaddy Kiddies, Soul Food Cafe Fun, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , , on 08/10/2009 by gwenguin1

We decorate our houses, offices and desks for Halloiween, why not decorate our computer? I have created four (count ’em four) Halloween desktops to decorate your computer for Halloween. All you need to do is right–click on the image and then left-click on ‘Set as Desktop Image’, and when you’re ofrfline, that should be the desktop background on your computer. Enjoy!!! If you want to save the images, simply right-click and then click on ‘Save Picture as’, the saving programme will guide you through the process of saving the picture to your computer.

Halloweem Wallpaper 1-2009


Halloween Wallpaper 2-2009


Halloween Wallpaper 3-2009


Halloween Wallpaper 4-2009

Monstrous Makeovers

Posted in Blogging Memes, Everday Living, Scaddy Kiddies, Stuff And Nonsense, You can do these! with tags , , , , on 29/09/2009 by gwenguin1

Voice over spooky music, screen fades to stylised monster images.


“Good evening ladies, gentlemen, and monsters! Welcome to the premiere of ‘Monstrous Makeovers’. I am your hostess, Medusa.”


Close-up of hostess snakes on her scalp in a restless French Twist.


She is wearing an obviously designer gown, flawless make-up and jewel studded dark glasses.


“Halloween is growing closer every day, and there are a lot of worthy monsters being left out of the number One night for monsters.” Medusa moves a comfortable arrangement of couch and chairs at centre stage. She seats herself on an immaculate fainting couch upholstered in deep blood-red Panné velvet.


“Tonight our guest will be La Llorona. But first, a word from our sponsors.”


Cut to commercials-


Nature’s Farms Dried Fruits)

“Do your little monsters prefer their Halloween candy to good healthy food? This year, why not hand out snack packs of Nature’s Farms dried fruits? Full of nutrition and natural sweetness, these snacks won’t have kids’ Moms sitting up with a child that ate way too much candy.”


(Costume Barn)

“Are you tired of wearing the same tired, old costumes for trick or treat parties? Come down to the Costume Barn across from the Wonder Bread/Hostess Outlet Store. We have some one-of-a-kind costumes that are sure to be a hit at any party. We have costumes for every budget and size.”


(51st Street Bakery)

“Is your party in need of some fresh-baked goodies? At the 51st Street Bakery our talented cake decorators can make a cake that will add the perfect touch to any party. From Litter box cakes to skull-shaped cookies, we have a selection that can’t be beat!”


Fade in to centre stage, and Medusa, breaking up a dispute between two snakes, while never losing a bit of her poise.


“Welcome back to our television audience. To those living in the American Southwest, this lady needs no introduction. She’s known for her passion, and love of water. Please give a warm welcome to La Llorona!”


Enter La Llorona from stage left, Medusa stands and kisses the air close to La Llorona’s cheeks.


“Please sit here dearie.” Medusa motions to a wingback chair in darkest blue figured satin. La Llorona sits gracefully, gathering the tatters of her shawl closer to her chest.


“Tell us, in your own words, why you would like to be a part of the Halloween Festivities, and what you hope to gain from a Monstrous Makeover.”


Pan from Medusa to a close-up of La Llorona.


Well, I really love children, and since I’ve lost my own, I miss playing with children, and making up stories to tell them.”


“What stories did you tell your children before you drowned them?” Medusa smoothed a yawning snake back behind her left ear, and dangling shield-shaped earrings.


“I will always regret making that mistake. I should have known better, but I let passion cloud my thinking.” Her spectral face shivered for a moment under the lights.


Medusa patted La Llorona’s hand sympathetically. “When we get back from commercial break, we’ll let the audience ask questions of our guest, and then vote on whether or not La Llorona should get a monstrous make-over in time for Halloween.”


Fade to commercials:


(The Candy Company)

“Are your kids staying home for a party instead of Trick-or-Treating this year. Have you heard one too many horror stories about deadly treats in treat bags. This year, let the Candy Company create wonderful, one of a kind treat bags for your little ghouls and beasts.”


(Public Service Announcement- Centre Street Hospital)

“Why worry about the goodies your kids get Trick-or-Treating? For the safety of our children, Centre Street Hospital is offering free X-rays of Halloween Treat bags until midnight on Halloween. While you’re here you can pick up pamphlets and poisoning, with Poison Control’s Toll-Free number on every pamphlet. Make your family’s Holiday safe and fun.”


(Pretty Miss Cosmetics)

“Do you get tired of trying to paint your family’s faces for Halloween, and ending up with ugly smears instead? For less than 5 dollars per person, Pretty Miss’s make-up artists can give you Hollywood-style face painting, with hypoallergenic, food-safe cosmetics. We will be open until midnight on Halloween for your face-painting needs.”


Fade to audience at Monstrous Makeovers:


“You there in the third row, in the tacky aqua sweater set.” Medusa points to a nervous young woman, with her hand timidly raised.


“Uh… Yes… La Llorona, how do we know that our children would be safe around you?” Her words are almost lost in the tumult of agreement from the rest of the audience.


“I have been punished for over 100 years for what I did to my own ninos, I have no right to make any other mother suffer like I have. Now all I want is for all the children to be safe and have a Happy Halloween.”


La Llorona stands under a spotlight.


“If I was lucky enough to become a part of Halloween, my costume would be as safe as possible. Light-coloured clothes, with glow-in-the-dark accents, face paint instead of masks, and sturdy shoes for little feet to be protected.” Her words are met with some boos, mixed with a lot of cheers.


“All right studio audience, pick up your voting boxes and vote yes or no. When we return from this commercial break we’ll have the results of your vote.”


Fade to commercials:


(Special Holiday Event)

“Thursday night, uncut, and without commercial interruption; see the holiday tradition “It’s The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown”, running from 8 to 8:30 p.m. Share thus heart-warming story from your childhood with your family.”


(Willard’s IGA Grocery)

“This week, and through Halloween, Willard’s IGA has pumpkins, corn stalks, fog machines, and all of your party needs for super-low prices. We’re so sure that we have the best prices we will meet and beat any competitors’ prices on the same product. If you bring in an ad showing a competitor with a lower price, we will not only meet their price, we will knock and additional 10% off our already low prices.”


(Shadowville YMCA)

“The Shadowville YMCA wants your family to have a safe and memorable Halloween. This year we are having Halloween Parties for children, teens, and adults, as well as films running all night in our recreation room, hayrides, and a huge haunted house, all for your family’s fun. We will serve a simple dinner, and have plenty of treats for everyone. Make your Halloween easy, memorable, and fun with the YMCA!”


Fade to Medusa and La Llorona standing centre stage.


“Welcome back everyone!” Medusa silenced a snake hissing from the swirl of her French Twist before continuing. “We have had in incredible response to La Llorona’s plight. Not only did the whole studio audience vote, our phone lines are still jammed with calls from all over the world!”


La Llorona blushed faintly, and smiled crookedly.


“The audience has let their wishes be known with a landslide vote!! An amazing 97% of you voted yes! You want La Llorona to have a Monstrous Makeover, and be a continuing part of Halloween traditions!”


Close-up of La Llorona’s startled face, before she bursts into tears.


“A special note to our home audience- if you know of a monster you think deserves a Monstrous Make-over please e-mail us at www., or text us at 1031 2009, standard texting rates apply.


Be sure to tune in again next week to see the results of La Llorona’s Makeover, and to see our next guest Monster.


Stay tuned for our Friday Night Retrospective Movie, “The Creature From the Black Lagoon”.”


{{OK gang, here’s your chance, write your own letter to the TV station, and let us know why your Monster should recieve the Makeover.}}

Cannery Cat

Posted in Critter Tails, Everday Living, Scaddy Kiddies with tags , , , on 24/09/2009 by gwenguin1

You kids asked me why I insist on getting all my pets from the animal shelter? Let me tell you why:


She wasn’t a purebred cat, just a smallish white cat, with winter blue eyes and a sweet, soft trill for a mew. She appeared at the cannery at the beginning of third shift one Friday night as the rain poured down and the temperature dropped. One of the ladies in prep, Anne, smuggled her in, in her oversize purse, and the wee kit was adopted by third shift.


She filled out on a diet of trim from the meats canned, treats from the workers, and steadily increasing diet of unwanted rodents. She would appear as soon as second shift had all left, and disappear before first shift started arriving. As she hunted the entire cannery, she would stop at each station and accept the attention she knew was her due. She seemed to be happy with her life, and the humans that loved her dearly even the professed cat-haters warmed up to her.


She was so important to third shift that she was taken to the vet, spayed, and given all her shots as well as the microchip tag under her skin. She never grew big or bulky so she fit the name she answered to; ‘Miss Wisp’ made the lonely hours of third shift sunshiny and more than bearable.


The myth that third-shifters were a pack of insensitive loners was proven wrong by the tender care they showered on Wisp; that crock was started by those lazy lumpuses on first shift that left their work for second shift to finish, who then had no choice but to leave their work for third shift (without apologies or thank you’s).


Third shift had been finishing all of their work and part of second’s for years, without complaint, for one big reason- The Boss, he was a wise boss, he kept an eye on everything that went on with ‘his people’; he knew what first and second shift did to his night crew. He made a point to come in to work very early and help the night folks finish up, as well as bonuses for everyone on the roster. He made a point to thank everyone personally, and shake their hands while praising their tolerance and hard work.


If you had a boss like that wouldn’t you be willing to go the extra mile for ‘em? He met Wisp one night, and instead of telling third shift to get rid of her, he praised them for their love of God’s Creatures, and their foresight in adding a cat to hunt rodents to their crew. When he arrived early in the morning Wisp would greet him with silken head-butts, and a sweet flurry of delighted trills. She would then lead him to her pile of dead rodents; The Boss would then pet her and praise her effusively.


Well, time does what it does and passed. One morning The Boss didn’t come in, and by third shift everyone knew that he had died peacefully in his sleep. Not only had he been a well liked and respected boss, he was a true family man, and good neighbour, as well as being a philanthropist for the whole town.


On the day he was buried nearly every one in the whole town showed up at his funeral, and everyone had kind words to say. The students from the art camp he funded had painted a mural of his life for the library that bore his name. All of the musicians in town that he had funded their education and instruments played for him that day, and the testimonials went on for hours, with a lot of sniffling, and outright tears. No one noticed a dainty white cat watching from the distance, with downcast ears and half-lidded eyes.


When the cannery started back up, with a new boss, things began changing for the worse, quotas were upped to almost impossible levels, and all shifts were stripped to the bone. Third shift tried courageously to do all the work they were burdened with, and Wisp would pass the now-empty stations crying pitifully and searching for friends that would never return. Soon the ‘New Boss’ (the epithet was rife with anger and frustration now) hired men to ‘keep an eye’ on every shift and report directly back to him.


Third shift was cursed with a hulking, callous brute who found black amusement in catching people in embarrassing situations, and laughed when he caught animals and threw them into the steam cleaner. Wisp became painfully wary, and she slinked through the factory, eyes, nose, and ears always ready to catch the slightest hint of The New Boss. Her fur began to look bedraggled, and there were nights she didn’t appear at all. Those sweet blue eyes were filled with sorrow and fear when she did appear, and her voice was almost soundless, when she did speak.


Anne had smuggled her in, years ago, now she began to ask Wisp, “Sweet kitty-girl, would you like to come and live with me? You can stay inside where it is warm, and be safe for the rest of your life.” Everyone agreed that would be the best thing for their Wisp.


At last, the time was short, Anne was told she was to take early retirement, so she made a point to bring in a cat carrier, with warm, soft bedding and a tempting catnip toy in the back.


As Fate so often does, The Old Hag conspired against Wisp, and her salvation. Not only did the the Boss’ Snitch come in early, Wisp was delayed by a particularly sneaky rat, that she didn’t catch until it was almost time for the night crew to sign out.


As Wisp was racing across the floor with her trophy, she was yanked unceremoniously up by her scruff and swung in a dizzying circle. She wailed and struggled, but the Boss’ Snitch had her in a tight hold and refused to give up his toy. “Ah finally gotcha, ya worthless bag a fur!!” His coarse voice rose in delight.


He had known of the third shift cat for months, and had been trying to catch it since he had first seen it. Eyes glowing with soul-deep meanness he flung the cat onto the toothed conveyor to the steam cleaner.


As Wisp was dragged closer to the steam, impaled on steel teeth, and unable to free herself, the Boss’ Snitch laughed aloud. The crew heard Wisp’s cries and ran to the cleaner, in time to see her dragged into the steam chamber, and heard the despairing wails, they mercifully stopped quickly.


As Anne screamed in horror and ran to rescue the cat, although she knew it to be too late for Wisp, a deep low growl filled the cannery as the mist from the steam began to coalesce. Gradually the form of a gigantic white cat, with baleful eyes like embers of a funeral pyre bared teeth that were nearly four feet long.


Anne spoke to the giant Mist-Cat. “I tried to save her but I am too damn old to run fast…” A gentle brush of the Mist-Cat’s cheek, so like Wisp that the lady began to weep silenced her. The third shift handyman put a shaking arm around her waist, as he too, wept for one little white cat.


The Mist-Cat turned her attention to the Boss’ Snitch; she began to stalk him with intent motions. Before anyone could say or do anything, the Mist-Cat caught the Snitch by the back of his neck and shook him violently, before impaling him on the steam cleaner’s conveyor.


The entire third shift heard an imperious “get out” in their minds, and they felt/knew/understood that the warning was from the Mist-Cat. As they all fled the factory, they could hear steam valves screaming under increased pressure, and machines juddering apart.


Without knowing why, Anne took a moment to claim the cat carrier, now closed, as she ran for her car. Anne looked back, and saw the form of the gigantic cat pouncing the cannery to rubble. She started the car and sped towards home, praying aloud as she drove.


She put her car in park when she was in her driveway, and found she was shaking too badly to stand. She froze when she heard something moving in the back seat, and was sure she had gone mad when she heard a tiny mew, eerily like Wisp’s. She opened the back door, and gently removed the cat carrier, staring in wonder through the barred door.


There, sitting patiently was a tiny kitten, who could have been Wisp when she was still with her Momma Cat. Anne stared in wonder, as three more faces appeared from the shadows, all white, with light blue eyes, watching her with expectant faces.


“Welcome home babies!” The minute she opened the carrier door the four kittens tumbled out and surrounded her feet, mewing happily. Over the next hour, her three best friends from work all stopped by, and went home with one of the kittens, each of whom chose their person before they stepped through the door.


Across town, an eerie mist hovered over the remains of the cannery, eerily similar to a cat in shape, until the draggled remains of one tiny white cat were removed, and given a loving burial by the third shift crew.


Nowadays, there is no sign that the cannery ever existed; no business was ever built on those haunted grounds.


Today an animal shelter thrives there; “White Cat Animal Rescue” is a no-kill shelter that is well known for the gentleness and dedication of its volunteers. Anne and ‘Wispetta’ are the Grand Dames, loved by everyone who has ever come to them for help or to adopt an animal.

Inspired by Thalia

Posted in Blogging Memes, Family History, My Inspirations, Old Deep Roots, Soul Food Cafe Fun with tags , , , , , on 25/08/2009 by gwenguin1

I read Thalia’s post on her Soul Cloak yesterday, and it inspired me to write if my own Soul Cloak.  Since I didn’t wish to copy Thalia’s idea I wove a cloak that suits me.

Here is the link to Thalia’s Soul Cape post:


My Soul Cloak?  Hrmmmmnnnnnnnhhhh… I must ponder this, not for long though, my instincts usually don’t steer me wrong.


To me, Soul and Spirit are rather interchangeable, despite nit-picking to the contrary.  Soul means the eternal something we all had when we were born, that part which idenditifies with your chosen Diet (ies). 


I think the distinction betwixt the two words is this; the Soul is attached to a physical form for the span of that lifetime.  A Spirit can exist on the physical plane of awareness, to a degree, without a physical form.


So… Does my Soul Cloak have any relation to my Scar Coat?  I should think so, the scars were earned in the trenches, as it were, and my scars are an integral part of my personal beauty.


 Had I not experienced things that would create lasting scars, I would not shine like I seem to be doing frequently these days.


And what about my Dream Coat?  Surely I cannot forget that!  Dreams are what keep you going when nothing else will, not even promises.  Dreams allow us to retain innocence and joy.


I’d need all the accessories I use to do what I do, so this has to be an enormous cloak!!  Blessed with delightful pockets and small bags, with intriguing shapes tucked into them.  And I would make it with an oversized hood, so that I could create a wee spot of privacy whenever and wherever I wished.


The cloth for my cloak would be spun of stardust and glamourie.  I would dye it with dewdrops and snuggles, soften it with sunshine and the scent of favourite flowers, lavender, chamomile, alyssum, and roses, and the smell of well-loved earth.


I would lay it out and cut it with an eye towards the future, and sew it with ties from my past.  Sparkling like the finest diamonds, the magical days of my life decorate the cloak that swirls around me, from my shoulders to my feet.


Hiding in the shadows of the cloth are the darkest times I have known, the times that taught me some of the most important lessons of this lifetime.  For decoration I have sewed in favourite films, old jokes, and family not-too-exaggerated legends.


The outside of my cloak feels like a high-quality Plushy Animal, the sort of texture that dares you and begs you to bury your fingers in the downy pile.  Since Soul Cloaks are often used in comforting the shoulders are padded with Gore-Tex so they dry quickly after being cried upon.


Soul Cloaks are frequently used as a shelter for someone needing a respite, so the inside must be light and pleasant, so they are comfortable.  The cloak will be lined with smooth linen, line-dried and fresh-pressed, the fabric is embroidered in dainty satin stitches, all sort of interesting minutiae to get a conversation going when someone needs to talk, but doesn’t know where to start.


My cloak also needs to rest lightly, so as never to be burdensome, and strong enough to last all the lifetimes I am blessed with.  It also needs to be well provisioned with laughter, hugs and kisses, and encouragement.


There is always a warm pot of hope and the back of the stove, and there are plenty of mugs for everyone.  I can play music for you, whatever genre, and volume you desire (within reason on the volume, please).


Last but not least my, Soul Cloak must reflect my faith and ideals, loving, honest, honourable, and straightforward.   And that is how I made my Soul Cloak.

The Poet Awakens Again

Posted in Everday Living, My Inspirations, Poetry with tags , , on 19/08/2009 by gwenguin1

In my heart I love writing prose far more than poetry, yet so many people whose opinions I respect have told me that I am ‘good’ at poetry (whatever that means, lol).  So, I keep on writing poems,  even though I think that they are nothing to write home about.  Anywhoodlz, here is my latest poem, inspired by an incredibly sweet dream that remained clear and viable long after I had awakened.



I went to sleep, as I always do,

Alone and lonely,

Wishing to be a lover.

Loved and loving,

No longer a solitary heart.


Then I began to dream,

So clear and sweet,

I wanted to sleep forever.

You and I, as one,

Bathed in luxury, and joy.


As lovers we were

Inexpressibly matched.

The least touch was

Starlight and Heaven,

Magic of the highest form.


We were at once

Scarlett and Rhett,

Arthur and Guinevere,

Adam and Eve, and

You and I.


Whether we were met

By Royalty in Castles;

Holy Men atop Mountains,

Or the Common Man

In the crowded streets.


We were met with

Honour and love;

Everywhere we went

We were respected

And bathed by our love.


Once I was wrapped in

Green velvet gown;

Like the Lady of

Welcome Summer

And the return of Plenty.


The we were clad like

Kings of the Far East in

Rare Silks and Jewellery.

Perfumed by musks and

Sweet Sandalwood.


We were gowned in nothing,

Naked and unashamed,

Innocent and innocence.

No shame of our

God-given forms.


The in we rode the range,

Jeans and chambray.

Fine steeds and

Soaring hawk as

Our procession.


The we were blessed

No longer two, but

Planning for three.

Surprised by two

Sons so like their sire.


Who would wish to

Waken from this glory?

To worry about trifles

And be inundated with

Childish trivialities.


So now I sit, alone,

And more lonely

Than I was, carrying

The knowledge that

I had just dreamed.

Gwenerrella Sees A Horror Film

Posted in Everday Living, Gwenerella, Misspent Youth, Playin' with my PSP XI, Reviews and Previews, Scaddy Kiddies, Stuff And Nonsense, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on 29/07/2009 by gwenguin1

gwenerrela with Cat“I wanna tell ya about da movie I seed yesterday. It was about killer flies!!”


“Dis rich man wanned ta build a place for people dat gots no house ta lib in.”


“Dere was dese guys from da prison buryin’ people dat dinnunt have no money inna place called ‘Potters Feeled’.”


” But there wasn’t no pots anywheres.”


“An’ dere was a lady from da police who waned ta ‘dennify a dead lady.”


“Day were all onna eye-land togedder, an’ da flies killed da rich man’s friend.”


“When ebbery buddy tried to find da rich mans friend, dey looked and lookeded more anna flies was watchin’ ‘em look.”


“When dey finded da rich mans friend the flies larv-eggs had eated him allmos alla way gone.”

 The Larv-Egg Man

”He dinnunt hav a face no more. It was all larv-eggs wigglin!”


“Den dem flies started ta kill evverbuddy else too! Not all togedder, they killed ‘em one and then another one, slow-like.”


“Me an my brudders were watchiun’ and laffin’. When dey would show dem larv-eggs we’d holler “Larv-eggs!” an’ run out a da libbing room.”


“Just when we was gonna find out if da larv-eggs getted evverbuddy Momma called us to dinner.”


“She askded us why we dinnunt want no rice an’ all we could do was laff.”

Haunted By “The Haunting In Connecticut”

Posted in Everday Living, Family History, Reviews and Previews, Scaddy Kiddies with tags , , , , , on 20/07/2009 by gwenguin1

I admit it, I love the horror film genre.  I grew up on them, and I cut my horror film teeth on the likes of Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee, Vincent Price, and the unparralelled  Gods: Bela Lugosi and Lon Chaney, Jr.. 


Granted, there were plenty of stinkers which became the source of helpless laughter of those around us at either the theatre or drive-in.   We saw “Friday the 13th,Pt. 3 in 3-D” at the theatre, It was Mum,  her three children born, and a passel of neighbourhood kids that wished they had a Mum like ours.  My brother Jim worked in Housekeeping at the nearby hospital, and he had put in a rough shift before we went to the theatre. 


Unfortunately he fell asleep holding his super-sized cola, his grip held until about 30 seconds before one of the climaxe s.  *KA-Rashhhh-splashhhh!!*  Cola and ice scattered as the whole audience audibly gasped then laughed in embarrasment. 


Which was when the the gory weapon smeared across the screen and blood flowed, the girl screamed in obviously pretend pain.  The audience  was yelling and scared witless.  Poor Jim awoked in time to see the girl be slaughtered, he jerked awake, chuffed in utter shock, and cussed sogftly to himself before laughing with his mother, sister, and brother.


I didn’t plan to babble on for a page or so before getting into the reason for today’s review. Today’s film is the new horror film, “The Haunting in Connecticut”  From the clips and the present state of computer-generated special effects I knew that it should be a visual stunner,  but would the story have a pseudopod to stand on?


Mum rented it from the local ‘Red Box’ kiosk Friday and we settled in to scare ourselves silly!  I knew Mum would be hooked before the opening credits were over.  I can’t give away the movie for those that haven’t seen it, but I can guarantee that you will be glued to it. 


The story is as powerful as it is true, and unfolds like origami, facets and layers galore.  The actors were all good, and the characters they created were believable and 3-dimensional.  The special effects were excellently done, with a delicate precision.


This film did something that almost no horror film can claim to do, as the final credits were running  I ws  filled with a warm resurgence of faith.  Yes faith!  From a horror film no less.  But what a horror film.  I told Mum  that I would be keeping my eye out to buy this as a ‘keepy’ film, and I am serious.  Not  only is it excellent entertainment, it is based on a true story, and cracking good film-making.  So, if you’ve a taste for horror films,  this one won’t disappoint.

Souper Saturday

Posted in Blogging Memes, My Inspirations, Poetry, You can do these! with tags , , , , , on 04/07/2009 by gwenguin1

My friend Shiloh; you remember Shiloh, I know; inspired me again with one of ner posts.  This one an ABC’s of Independence Day.  You can find hers at:


My ABC’s are below:


The ABC’s of Independence Day


A is for Atlantic,

Wide Ocean between

The Colonies and King.

Betwixt the two.

Views and ideas

Were changed

And then challenged.


B is for Betsy Ross,

Leaning over her sewing

In red, white and blue.

Stripes and Stars,

Symbolising the Hopes

Of Thirteen Colonies

Seeking freedom.


C is for Continental Congress,

Penning the words:

“We hold these truths to

Be Self-Evident,

That all men are created equal.

Endowed by their Creator

With certain unalienable rights.”


D is for “Don’t tread on me”,

Emblazoned beneath a snake

Coiled to strike out in defence.

A banner to rally round

An ideal to fight for

A country to begin building

A dream now dreamt around the world.


E is for Equal,

“All men are created equal.”

We still strive towards this.

Men should be counted by their deeds;

Not by the colour of their skin

The label on their faith

Or where they live.


F is for French,

Our Allies across the sea,

The creators of Lady Liberty.

Whether explorers, Nobility,

Simple Farmers, or trappers

These amis have become

Part of the faces and names here.


G is for Guerrilla Warfare

Quite the change from the

Stylised and rigid ways of war

Practised in Europe for years.

Hidden behind hillocks,

Or the rafters of barns

Were fearless rebels.


H is for History Teachers,

Passing on the stories of our

Forefathers’ deeds and dreams.

More than dates and places,

The story of what was won,

The dreams to be made real

The strength we are heir to.


I is for Indians,

The first, true Americans,

More than Pocahontas.

Whether it was Crazy Horse

In the South West,

Or Squanto

In the North West.


J is for Justice;

As in “Justice for all.”

The way the founders meant it.

Not for just the moneyed few,

The famed and beautiful folks,

Or those with political power,

But for every single American.


K is for Key;

The composer Francis Scott Key,

Witnessing a battle at night.

“Oh say can you see

By the dawn’s early light?

What so proudly we hailed

At the twilight’s least gleaming.”


Lis for Life,

All men are ordained with certain unalienable rights,

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.

By these lofty ideals we were begun,

None are but chattels,

Not by name, race or faith

Can they be denied.


M is for Marquis,

The Marquis de Lafayette

Leaving his homeland.

To support  via deed

Finance spent upon it

This pretty dream,

That will be America.


N is for National Anthem,

Sing it standing,

With hand o’er heart.

Sing out in the voice

Of millions of dreams

“Whose broad stripes and bright stars

Through the perilous fight.”


O is for Open Elections,

Over two hundred years

Of National intention.

We are free to choose

Who our leaders will be

They are not born to the role,

But should earn it through service.


P is for  Pie;

All-American pastry treat,

Full  of juicy apples,   of course.

One of the trio

Of American symbols

With seasons of Baseball,

And barbequed Hot Dogs.


Q is for Quitters,

Something that the rebels weren’t

No, they held on no matter how drear.

With feet frozen,

Clothed in near rags.

With no food in their bellies

Or fire for warmth.


R is for Red Coats

The British uniform,

Also called Lobsterbacks.

The bright red jackets

And crossed white bands

They were walking targets

For the Sons of Liberty.


S is Stars and Stripes,

The bright-hued  flag

That watches o’er this land.

Stripes of red and white

Stars of shining white

On their field of blue

One for each original colony.


T is Taxation,

Our forefathers decreed

Taxation without representation unfair.

We were granted to right

To say nay to taxes

We deemed unfair

Or unnecessary.


U is for Under Siege,

Something we have survived

Time and time again.

From the Revolutionary War,

To the Civil War/War of Northern Aggression,

On the balmy shores of Pearl Harbor

And the Towers of 9-11.


V is Valley Forge

A frozen and starved bivouac

For the fledgling army.

Despite the icy darkness

Stars hidden by clouds

Very few fires for warmth,

Still the patriots persevered.


W is for  White House’

Home of our Leaders

And Fortress of our hopes.

It has housed Heroes, Royalty from everywhere

Movie stars and starlets

And the lines of everymen that

Tour her halls and our heritage.


X is for “X”-tremes

The complementing climates

Of fifty diverse states.

From Alaska’s sub-Arctic climes,

To Hawaii’s tropical shores.

We boast forests, mountains,

Oceans and lakes, and deserts.


Y is for Youthful Outlook,

That our culture can boast,

Born of many ways and places.

From the souls of every country,

In dances fast or slow,

In the voice of many instruments,

And stories immigrating with us.


Z is for Zephyr,

Those sweet cooling breezes

Wafting past our waning grills.

Seated in lawn chairs, or stadium seats,

Awaiting the magic

In fireworks’ shifting glow.

Posted in Uncategorized on 09/06/2009 by gwenguin1
Effigy Bear Mound
This is an artist’s rendering of the Effigy Bear Mound, the illustration used in “Hunab Ku”.

Welcome to Hunab Ku

Posted in Blogging Memes, Bookworm Tales, Journey of Hunab Ku, My Inspirations, Reviews and Previews with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 08/06/2009 by gwenguin1

The three of us, Mum, Matt, and myself were pottering about in the used bookstore a few days ago and I found a wonderful book for reawakening your Spirit and Creativity.  It is called  “Hunab Ku- 77 Sacred Symbols for Balancing Body and Spirit”, written by Karen Speerstra and Joel Speerstra.


I opened the book and within the fist 2 pages (of the Introduction) knew that I had found the seeds for a deep garden of perennials.  The first Symbol is perfect for where I am in my my Cycle.


When you build anything, you start with the base.  With this symbol, they have combined Native American Mythology, Chakra Medicine, and Mayan Numerology to create our base.  Seated in the Muladhara Chakra, bathed in the red of ochre, the color of birth-blood and buried with the builders of the the Effigy Bear Mound in McGregor, Iowa, United States.  Expressed with the Mayan 1 for Solitude and Strength, it symbolises our return to the womb or cave to rest and rally our forces befiore returning to an active role in our lives.


Another symbol inherent in the Great Bear Mound is the powerful,protective aspect of Mother Bear with her cubs.  Ursus Major could as easily be Ursus Mater, with her cub, Ursus Minor sparkling along with her in the night skies.

I will be searching for my own Bear Archetypes and tales over the next week, and I welcome anything you would like to share, O Constant Reader (TY Stephen King for the nickname).

And Crabby-Paws Speaks

Posted in Blogging Memes, Poetry, Soul Food Cafe Fun with tags , , , , , on 08/06/2009 by gwenguin1

*peering blearily out from under the dark cycles of my life*

I am actually on my way back to the world from the unavoidable shadows that come with wisdom.  I am beginning to feel good, solid ideas rising from my depths, and am already working on one of them.


The last day that was lit for me, I wrote a six-word romance of my own:


6-Word Romance



“Yes, I heard what you said.”

She looked up from her keyboard,

Rolling her eyes at the screen.

“You know I will get it.

I always get what I want.”

“With everyone else, do you mean that?”

They locked eyes in their minds.

“Always, with everyone.” She spoke gently,

But her words were strong steel.

“Do you think you are able?”

He always challenged her, on everything.

“Of course I am Dear One.”

Mentally determining to accept his challenges.

“You just can’t make this happen.”

“Look at what I’ve done already.”

Her words should have warned him.

But he had always underestimated her.
”You stayed there, isn’t that true?”

“Ahhh, but you knew I would.”

“In truth?  I counted on it.”

They laughed at the same time.

The miles between them meant nothing

Their friendship flew fast on the wind.


                                      ã 2009 Gwen M Myers


Thank you so much for your patience and tolerance, My Family of Creativity, Love, and Steel.  Please know that you are never far from mmy thopughts and heart, even when I wander off down a sidetrack.


Like the Lone Wolf that is my Spirit-Guide, I wander away from the pack and bring new things back, and share them with my ‘Pack’, which is blessed to have members of Soul Food Cafe in it.


This time my find is  book called “Hunab Ku- 77 Sacred Symbols for Balancing Body and Spirit” by Karen Speerstra and Joel Speerstra, it his lit a fire under my metaphorical hieney and begged me to share what it in these pages.  I’ll share the first Archetype in a second post.

A Happy Memory Surfaces

Posted in Everday Living, Family History, Old Deep Roots, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , , , , , , on 10/04/2009 by gwenguin1

I have always been a precocious, bull-headed little geek.  I was reading by the age of three, and always fascinated by scientific.  Christmas age 8, what did I want?  Colorforms Dolls?  Nope.  A new Barbie, with clothes?  Huhn-uhn.


“Oh for goodness’ sake Gwen Marie, what do you want then?”


“I want the Scientist Kit, the one with stuff ta take apart an’ look at their insides.”


“My God Herm, she sounds just like her Mother!!”  Quoth Grandma DeShaw.


“Hrrrrrrmmmmmbbbbbblllllllllrrrrrrrrrrrrr…” Meaning, “You’re wrong, but I don’t want to fight.”


“I’ll let your Mother buy you that one.  What else do you want?”  Meaning, “Please ask for something I can relate to?”


“I wanna Jane West doll, cuz she comes with a saddle an’ every thing else, and she can really ride my horses!”  Oh the relief and delight on her face when I said that.


“What else Puss?” 


“I wanna artist kit, with paints, paper, an’ brushes.  An’ more horses.”  I adored horses and collected the Breyer Model Horses.  I had quite a herd, and they all had names, pedigrees and personalities.  I knew I would probably never own a horse, so this was how I satisfied that longing.


“Are you makin’ me a scarf, mittens, an’ hat again?  Everybody at school think it’s cool that you make ‘em for me.”  How she beamed every year when I said that!  What she didden know was that her love stayed in the yarn, an’ I felt safe when I wore ‘em. 


And winters were long, cold, and dismal in Michigan.  We got ‘Lake Effects Snow’ from the East and West.   A winter storm coming across the Great Lakes would glut itself on the cold waters below, and then disgorge all of that moisture when it makes landfall.


This is the land of lawn Mowers that double as a snow-blower, 50 pound bags of rock salt stacked in the garage, where it was necessary to store one’s wheels to be more sure of it starting every morning.


Cap, gloves, and a long scarf were a necessity.  Very often, all you would see of your neighbours were eyes peering from bundling up, until one waddled like brightly painted Penguins into the promise of a new snowfall.


More than a few times a year the snow would drift high enough, that someone had to come at the snow from the outside.  The first one to dig out would start on a neighbour’s sidewalk and driveways.


All that babble to illustrate why those simple accessories were a necessity, a person could lose fingers, toes, or bits of their faces if they weren’t protected.  And the ones I was gifted with every Christmas were infused with her protective, determined love.


To those of you who have never known this, my sincerest apologies.  And to those of you who have been blessed by this experience, wasn’t it wonderful to remember such a moment?

Another Cool Writing Meme

Posted in Blogging Memes, Everday Living, My Inspirations, Poetry, Reviews and Previews, Soul Food Cafe Fun with tags , , , , , on 10/04/2009 by gwenguin1

My friend Shiloh also turned me onto this form of poetry, and I intend to have a great deal of fun with it!


You can see Shiloh’s response here:


I think she has quite  a hand for this form.


Shoulder to the Sea


Let It Be

Let the Sunshine

Sunshine on my Shoulders

Sunshine of my Love

Love the One You’re With

Loves Me Like A Rock

Rock the Nation

Rock and Roll All Night

Night Moves

Night Chicago Died

Died on the Blue Highway

Dies In Your Arms Tonight

Tonight, Tonight

Tonight’s the Night

Nights In White Satin

Night Time

Time Out For Fun

Time of the Night

Night on Bald Mountain

Night Music

Music of the Spheres

Music Man

Man of La Mancha

Man on the Silver Mountain

Mountain Hop (Misty)

(Aint’t No) Mountain High

High Hopes

High Summer

Summer of ‘69

Summer In The City

City of New Orleans

City of the Condemned

Condemned System

System Failure

System Breakdown

Breakdown in ¾

Breakdown (Keep Moving)

Moving In Stereo

Moving Pictures

Pictures of Matchstick Men

Pictures of Home

Home Sweet Home

Home By the Sea

Sea of Mercy

Sea & Sand




I’ve been Inspired Again

Posted in Blogging Memes, Everday Living, My Inspirations, Soul Food Cafe Fun, SS Vulcania, The Soundtrack Of My Life with tags , , , , , on 10/04/2009 by gwenguin1

My friend Shiloh,, you remember Shiloh?  Finds some cool writing memes, and this one is no exception.  I had myself a challenging good time writing my response to this meme.


Pick a band/artist:

I chose-Harry Chapin

“All My Life’s A Circle”

Are you male or female? The moon rolls through the nighttime.

Describe yourself: All my life’s a circle.

How do you feel about yourself?   Seems like I’ve been here before.

Describe your ex-boyfriend/girlfriend:  Just like a children’s game.

Describe your current boy/girl situation: And as I see you here again.

Describe your current location: Sunrise and Sundown

Describe where you want to be: And so far, no dead ends.

Your best friend is:  I’ve found you a thousand times.

Your favorite color is: The seasons’ spinning round again

You know that: Our love is like a circle.

What’s the weather like? Till the daybreak comes around.

If your life was a television show what would it be called?  Let’s go round one more time.

What is life to you?   No straight lines make up my life.

What is the best advice you have to give?  Let’s go ‘round one more time.

If you could change your name what would you change it to? Circle (Circe)

*smirking to myself*


Welcome Back Vinyl!!

Posted in Everday Living, Family History, Stuff And Nonsense, The Soundtrack Of My Life, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on 01/02/2009 by gwenguin1

Once upon a time all that was available for listening to music was records  and the radio. 

When they came along, 8- tracks were good, but their construction had inherent problems.  Like, clicking from one portion of the tape to the next in mid-song because of time limitations.

Reel-to-reel came along, and that could play the whole piece in one fell swoop.  Unfortunately, reel-to-reels needed special, expensive equipment to use, and they had a tendency to lose the magnetic particles carrying the sound  with every playing.

Then came cassette tapes, small, portable, and playable on everything from a portable cassette player to a high-end cassette deck as part of a component stereo system.  They lost magnetic particles at a faster rate than reel-to-reels and they were limited to 1/2 hour per side.

Through all of these vinyl records- LP’s(albums), EP’s(long-playing singles), and 45’s(singles) hung on, they were still more reliable than any of the tape methods, unfortunately, they scratched easily, so they required careful handling.

I got into the habit of buying high-end vinyl-Japanese and European Imports, and Half-Speed Master and Master recordings.  I would play them once on my component system, recording them on to cassettes as I did so.

Then came the day… the world went digital, with Compact Discs, and MP3 players.  So many people thought that that was the end of everything else, so they dumped all of their passè  goodies in favour of CD’s.

I still had my component system, and so I kept my vinyl and cassettes, and still used the cassettes as I slowly replaced them with compact discs.  I was very ‘into’ CD’s, they could be played over and over, were tougher than vinyl, and had an advantage in clarity of sound.

Recently, vinyl has begun making a comeback, and CD’s are not as favourable as they once were.  I have listened and have noticed a marked difference in the feel of vinyl, as opposed to CD.

I have the soundtrack to Walt Disney’s “Fantasia”, on CD, and I recently was gifted with a double-album of a “Fantasia” cover, I sat there listening to “A Night on Bald Mountain” by Moussourgsky and I had gooseflesh running up and down my legs from the subtleties missing on CD.

My brother and I have talked about it at length and we thing/feel/intuit that difference lies in the fact that the LP reproduces exactly what the musician and producer wanted, and the CD reproduces what it ‘percieves’  to be the music.

We have also noticed that when the music was recorded after the advent of digital sound reproduction there is little difference in sound quality, but… when the music was recorded prior to digital it is better on vinyl than CD.  So… we now divide our music into P.D. (pre-digital) and A.D. (after digital) categories.

Thursday Thirteen

Posted in Blogging Memes, Everday Living, My Inspirations, You can do these! with tags , , , , , on 16/01/2009 by gwenguin1

Shiloh is a constant source for things to blog for me, and this is the first in a continuing  series of blogging memes.  They are called the Thursday Thirteen, and I am starting with Thirteen Things about me, for every letter of the alphabet.  Today is the letter “A”.











1: Adventurous- for me an adventure is anything from checking out a new website to camping in the middle of Mr. Black Bear’s territory.

2: Artistic- this blog and some others are full of my artistic endevours, not only pencil, pen and ink, and watercolour paintings, there is also digital art, prose and poetry that I can claim as my work.


3: Angelic:  I don’t know about this, there have been people that call me an angel, but I’ve torn too much of my clothes on my devil-horns to accept that.


4: Amethyst: one of the June birthstones, and one of my birthstones.


5: Astrologian- I am a student of astrology, I neither teach nor practice it, just study it.


6: Ambassadress, I consider mtself an Ambasadress for my faith (Wicca).  I hope that I can help to forge greater understanding and acceptance between traditionally antagoinistic faiths.


7: Ambidextrous- to a point, mostly from uncontrolled multi-tasking!  LOL


8: Anti-functional fixedness- I can think up more uses for one thing, a good example is my pen-knife, I call it my Multi-putpose tool.  I use it to clean under my nails, scrape gooey stuff off a surface, sharpen pencils, and so forth.


9: Associative- as in free-associative, when someone says a w0rd I will see a nymber of different images I associate with that word.


10: Androgynyous- I don’t restrict my interests because they are ‘masculine’ or ‘feminine’, I enjoy drag racing as much as I do cooking, and playing with automobiles as much as sewing, crocheting or embroidery.


11: Anachronistic- I have always felt out of place, step and time in the world as it is now.  That helps explain my preference for tales out of time and world.


12: American- as in Daughters of the American Revolution, which I could be if I so desired, my Mum’s Aunt is a member.


13: Angry- something I prefer to not be!!  LOL

6 Word Stories

Posted in Blogging Memes, Everday Living, Poetry, Quotents, Stuff And Nonsense with tags , , , , on 07/09/2010 by gwenguin1

This started Sunday evening when I was chatting with Shiloh, who shared her blog’s new look (  ) and a couple of her recent posts. One was a fun and easy one with six-word stories. When I went quiet for bit, she challenged me to a Six-Word Story Duel.

We started tossing ideas back and forth, and here is what we came up with.  To me it feels Haiku-esque.  This is one of those fun challenges that can wake up sleepy Muses, and give you a chuckle at the same time.

Gwen’s:                                     Shiloh’s:

He dangled temptation, she steadfastly refused.

                                                Jagged lightning strikes! Fire feasts greedily.

Placid appearance aside, cats can hunt.

                                                Children: angelic asleep, whirling dervishes  awake.                                                              

A gleam of fangs, vampyre’s kiss.

                                                 Uprooted trees. Roofless home–tornado’s  carnage.

Stalking the prey. Carefully placed footsteps.

                                                 Man in tights and cape. Delusional.

Dancing shadows can excite your imagination.

                                                Their first kiss? Awkward, must practice.

Ripples of laughter.  Please, not me!

                                                 With one click, her money disappeared.

Break in concentration, brother’s welcome voice.

                                                 Should we stop or keep going?

Conversation twisted interestingly. What’s going on?

                                                 Homeless ghost will haunt undesirable Guests.

Horse stumbles. Odds go sky-high.

                                               Adrenaline. Rapid heartbeats. Hunter and hunted.  

After we had written this much, Shiloh and I started getting a touch silly as we discussed working on our posts.

Shiloh sent me the following message:  “Better get posting, instead of being caught up in the romantic music playing! *laughs*”

I saw one of my infamous cartoons in my head and had to share it with Shiloh: ‘I can see the two of us, at apposite ends of a dusty mining town’s main street, arms and legs akimbo, doing the fast draw, but instead of our six-guns firing bullets, they are shooting six-word stories.”

Shiloh gleefully added: “or words in general?”

To which I responded: “Welllll…  It is a Six-Word Story Duel.”

Shiloh topped that with: “And people taking cover for fear of being buried in a mound of words!”

And that, my dears, is how my tales often begin

In The Beginning

Posted in Bookworm Tales, Call Me The Seeker, Doodle-a-day-oh!, It's In The Cards, My Inspirations, Reviews and Previews, Tarot Journey with tags , , , , , on 08/08/2010 by gwenguin1

In the beginning, when everyone had a Dreamtime, man was given the power of choice.  How wonderful this magic was!  A man could choose to hunt or not to hunt; a woman could choose to cook or not to cook.  Children could choose whether or not to obey their parents’ words.

Soon, everything was in chaos, for no one chose to hunt, cook or obey. The People everywhere were starving, naked, and wandering around lost to the power of choosing.

The Great Spirit looked down, and was sad.  This was not what He had imagined for his people.  He chose ones who had continued to choose to do what must be done, and He gifted them with understanding of the true power of choice. 

They were given pictures to help tell the tales, beginning with the fan.  Such a simple picture, to tell so much!

 Avery choice a destiny


Yes, this was influenced by Aboriginal Dreamtime images.


The fan is the beginning, when we are first gifted with the power of choice, but have not gained the wisdom of our choices yet. 

The Africans gifted us with this fan shaped destiny, at the end of every choice is a destiny, borne out by the choices that came before, and the lessons we have learned.

And so it is that all Tarot decks are about our choices; good, bad, or indifferent.  The choices we make, and the choices we do not make will all have an impact on our destiny.

The Major Arcana are the ‘big’ choices we make, and the Minor Arcana is the small everyday choices. 

In the Major Arcana we have the choice between love and lust (The Lovers and The Devil), self-destruction or self-loving care (Death), to follow ‘the way it has always been done’, or strike out on our own (The Hierophant), and to learn from our mistakes or not (The World and The Fool).

My Sister-Witch Melanie once said that everyone has 44 lives they live.  I commented that that is exactly the number of meanings to the Major Arcana; 22 cards X2 meanings (upright and reversed).


Old English Tarot

I feel as though I ought to hear "Greensleeves" being srummed on a lute!

 Now, as if I needed more, I have bought the Old English Tarot, which is a charming variant of the Rider-Waite, and the one that I sounded about 35 years younger than I really am when I saw it…

With a gasp and a “I must have them!!  I’ll worry about the bills later…” I held this new deck in my hands, and feasted my eyes on the cover of “Oracle of the Dreamtime”!


Way, way too cool!

Designed, illustrated by, and based on Oz’s Aboriginal Peoples’ Dreamtime the deck is a feast for any artist’s eyes, and the accompanying book is full of tales from the Dreamtime. 

Mum and I spent over an hour just filling ourselves with Dreamtime tales in the book; soon I’ll sit down and really explore this delightful addition.  And for anyone who is interested… this is deck number 55!