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What’s Brewing: Well, the hubby is in San Diego for about 6 weeks (and missing Sharkbait’s birthday, my birthday and our anniversary), with the possibility probability of being extended there until Yule…or maybe longer.  Sort of funny how he’s missed more of those as a civilian than he did when we were both in the military.

 I let Miss February borrow my car for the morning, so we were stuck in the house (which really needs to be cleaned) and I was feeling sorry for myself.  Fortunately, that didn’t last very long–it was a gorgeous day, and Sharkbait and I took a walk to the farmer’s market a couple blocks away (Chickadee was at a sleepover).  I picked up some peppers, green beans, and fresh mozzarella (or, as the kids call it, squeaky cheese, since it squeaks when you eat it).  Have yet to get a pumpkin…we’ll probably wait til that weekend.

I am still, wholly in blog-cation mode.  I though I might be transitioning into slow blog mode when I last posted, and then I spent a very enjoyable month with minimal internet time.  There was even a week in there where I think all I did on the net was check my email once.  I’m not sure if I’m going to pick the posting pace back up yet or not…while my list of projects and things has gotten shorter, this is also the time of year where I try to step back and slow down with the cycle of nature.

Unfortunately stepping back and slowing down seems like it might not be an option this year, since I’m single momming it again, lol.  And I had forgotten to factor a Halloween costume into the mix…Chickadee wants to be a mermaid, and we traditionally make our own costumes.  I’m thinking this year might be an exception!

First tea of the day: Lemon Lift (Bigelow)

Moment of Zen: Mealtime is an excellent time to incorporate simple spirituality into our daily lives.  First, try a prayer before eating.  It offers us a time to pause from the hectic pace of the day and reflect on our inner state of of being, and our connection to humanity (how many hands did it take to produce our dinner from farm to table?), to nature, and to the Divine.  Secondly, it offers a place to bring spirituality to the table, literally by way of mindful eating.  So often we rush and rush and rush through life and though really living–like a hamster on a wheel, that we forget to stop and take notice and enjoyment of acts we treat as mindless, like eating and drinking.  This is the time for harvest–the time for thankfulness and for winding down…which makes it good time for reflection, simplicity and for tuning in to our inner selves and motivations.

Practical tips for Spiritual Eating

  • Turn of the TV, computer, cell phone, NPR, etc.  Put the book down.  Mealtime shouldn’t be multitasking time!
  • Consider a mood-setter, something you do differently from a “normal” hurried feeding.  We often light candles and an oil lamp and turn off everything electrical.
  • Eat at a cleared, clean table.  Seriously, if you are like me and your table tends to collect *things*, the last thing you need is spying a bill for something or a list of things you were supposed to get done or whatever as a distraction.
  • Say grace or have a moment of reflection or thankfulness, etc before eating.
  • Focus on flavors.  Pick better ingredients–quality over quantity.
  • Savor your food.  Eat slowly, chew, use a knife and fork and put them down each time you take a bite.  Most importantly, sniff it.  A goodly amount of what we perceive as “taste” is really “smell”.  Eating is an act of sensation–foods have appearance, texture and even sound as well.  Use all of your senses.

If you’ve ever wondered what to do with apple peels and cores, wonder no longer!
DIY apple cider vinegar! (we are trying this right now)
Make apple jelly, no pectin needed!
Apple tea! (I totally want to try this out)

Happy Birthday Navy! Today was the Navy’s Birthday, and she’s turning 237.  With that in mind…

Deity of the Week: Check out these deities for sailors! 

Tarot Card of the Week: King of Cups 

Call him “The Godfather.” A kinder, gentler, more loving man you’ll never meet. His “kingdom” is his family, and his one dream is to be sitting at the head of a huge table filled with kin, kids, grandkids, serving up food to them all. He is paterfamilias, the father as capable of rocking babies to sleep, bandaging hurts and telling bedtime stories as he is at coaching a sports team or offering fatherly advice. His family always comes first; for them he’ll work, sacrifice, do just about anything; and, yes, like the “Godfather” he will consider doing terrible things to anyone who causes them grief.

read more…

Speaking of tarotthis is a freaking gorgeous deck!  One of these days, I’m just going to own enough decks to pull out my favorite images for each  and have my own mismatch deck!

A Very Cool Animal:

Last tea of the Day: White tea with saffron and chamomile

Parting thought: 

 Round about the caldron go;
In the poison’d entrails throw.—
Toad, that under cold stone,
Days and nights has thirty-one;
Swelter’d venom sleeping got,
Boil thou first i’ the charmed pot!
Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and caldron bubble.
Fillet of a fenny snake,
In the caldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt, and toe of frog,
Wool of bat, and tongue of dog,
Adder’s fork, and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg, and owlet’s wing,—
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.
Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and caldron bubble.
Scale of dragon; tooth of wolf;
Witches’ mummy; maw and gulf
Of the ravin’d salt-sea shark;
Root of hemlock digg’d i the dark;
Liver of blaspheming Jew;
Gall of goat, and slips of yew
Sliver’d in the moon’s eclipse;
Nose of Turk, and Tartar’s lips;
Finger of birth-strangled babe
Ditch-deliver’d by a drab,—
Make the gruel thick and slab:
Add thereto a tiger’s chaudron,
For the ingrediants of our caldron.
Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and caldron bubble.
Cool it with a baboon’s blood,
Then the charm is firm and good.

from Shakespeare’s Macbeth, Act IV, Scene 1

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