Dame Habonde – a Lesson in Abundance

Dame Habondi

I recently received a request for a custom Spirit Doll from a client I’ve worked with before.

He asked if I’d ever heard of Dame Habonde.

I hadn’t but a quick google search netted me plenty of information of this little known goddess and peaked my interest.

In Celtic areas she was a Goddess of abundance, joy, fertility and luck. Her symbols are ale and fire and as such she was honored by dancing around a bonfire.

In Wales, She’s celebrated on the First Monday in July.

She’s also connected with the night riders, believed to creep into homes at night bringing prosperity to the occupants. She was eventually dismissed as a witch and almost lost. 

As a fertility Goddess it automatically puts her in the Mother section of the Goddess triptych. But I didn’t pick up on new mother or young mother.

I was feeling a seasoned mother, maybe bordering on crone-hood; a wise and patient mother.

And yet in contrast I was picking up on early summer, more of first fruits rather that first harvest that most abundance goddess are associated with.

And just for shits and giggles, Habonde kept shooting over visions of strawberries.

Now here where I live, Strawberry season is the last half of June and in my house it’s a big deal. We have a local u-pick that does a big festival to kick off its harvesting season.

The Renaissance Man and I drag the kids into the field to pick our share while they complain that they’re bored and hot and dying……then I spend the next 2 days processing strawberries; freezing, jelly-making and cordials.

I feel like this was her way of giving me a clear picture of her energy.

I worked with my client on the details; He pictured red braids and green/gold energy.

I added ruby in zoistite, emerald and rhodochrosite chips for the rich abundant energy and self love, because you can’t have one without the other.

And then a funny thing happened.

It’s my artistic nature to add more. More of everything. More layers, more fabric, more fibers, more beads. Just more.

But every time I tried, it looked wrong. I wasn’t feeling it. I got a little nervous thinking maybe I lost my mojo. 

I’d undo what I tried and try something else. Sometimes I’d walk away, hoping that when I came back, the next layer would be more clear.

After 3 days, I finally asked Her. “What else do you need?”

And she laughed.

Nothing. I’m perfect. Sometimes, more isn’t better, it’s just more!”

So she was photographed, approved and sent off to her happy home to work her magic and bring joy to the man who commissioned her.

Her words echoed in my head. A sure sign that there was a lesson to be remembered.

The eerie truth is that it’s exactly what I told my ex-husband years ago.

Sometimes, more isn’t better. It’s just more.

He was the poster child for 80’s culture. “The one that dies with the most toys, wins”

Remember that idea?

No…okay, I’m old.

He lived by that, filling our cape cod to the seams with crap he’d never use, leaving it up to me to figure out where to keep it.

In frustration, I spit those exact words at him and he laughed a nervous laugh that suggested I was right but he wasn’t willing to admit it.

He’s still a pack rat, but his house isn’t my problem anymore. I’m not as bad, I’ll do a whole house purge at least once a year. 

I find it odd that a Deity of Abundance and plenty would preach against ‘more’. Isn’t that what Abundance is about?

So, what is the lesson now, how can that idea be applied to our current situations? Am I more focused on getting more? Do I really need it? Does it hamper my ability to enjoy the now?

And of course because I’ve lived with a pack rat and currently live in a tiny little hobbit house….. If I do feel I need it, how often will I use it? Where will I put it?

I think Dame Habonde is pointing out that abundance isn’t about more. Maybe its about enough. Enough to sustain, enough to share, enough to not worry about the next week, the next month, the dark and scarce winter seasons….

Maybe its not about having ‘it’ squirreled away in the back of the closet ‘just in case’. Maybe its about having the faith that it’ll show up when we need it. Maybe it’s about paying it forward and providing our excess to people who need it now. Something to think about. 

The Hag of Winter

I’m the only practicing witch here at the Haven.

I have hopes for the younger minions; Peter Pan, Dark&Twisty and maybe even Dennis the Menace. The rest are doing their own thing.

Just because I’m the only witch doesn’t mean I’m the only one affected by the energy.

Both The Renaissance Man and The Princess are complaining about being tired and not wanting to do the Things. My reply is always, “Then don’t”. Unfortunately their work ethic compels them to defy my suggestion.

The weather finally turned cold here. The Hag of Winter flew through and dropped a few inches of snow, she’ll be back around this week, bringing bitter arctic, record-breaking cold. The local weather stations are dubbing this cold snap “Chi-beria” .  *We live just outside Chicago*

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There’s a reason Cailliech Bheur is depicted as blind, seeing only from her third eye; winter doesn’t discriminate. It drops its load anywhere it feel like with no regard to our schedules, plans, and to-do lists. It knows what the land needs, She knows what we need.

We need to stop, we need to reflect, we need to turn inward and review our life choices. We need to dream and hope and plan for warmer days. We need to bundle up in warm cozy blankets and fleece-lined wool socks. We need to daydream and find solace in doing nothing.

The land benefits from the winter freeze as well. A deep frost depth, or how deep the ground freezes, helps to keep nutrients in place, loosens the soil and kills off certain insects know to cause havoc on crops.

Yes, it puts a damper on our to-do list but maybe our to-do list shouldn’t be so long in the winter. Maybe this is the Goddess’ way of telling us to STOP!

The sky is gray
The sand is gray
And the ocean is gray

And I feel right at home
In this stunning monochrome
Alone in my way

I smoke and I drink
And every time I blink
I have a tiny dream

But as bad as I am
I’m proud of the fact
That I’m worse than I seem

What kind of paradise am I looking for?
I’ve got everything I want and still I want more
Maybe some tiny shiny key
Will wash up on the shore

 

This song has been playing in my head the past week. In my mind its the embodiment of January. It begs us to reflect, to open our eyes and take a good look at ourselves and our life choices thus far.

January is the month of resolutions. The month of starting new habits; the month of hope and possibility. *Capricorn influence*

By the end of January most people have lost their gusto, and that’s okay because we enter Aquarius which, in my observation, tends to be much more cerebral and altruistic.

An excellent time to think through these early year goals and evaluate if they’re the best choice we can make for ourselves and our world.

The Hag of Winter is here again, to remind us – to force us to rest our bodies and enter the realm of our mind.

So seriously, turn off Netflix for a little while, grab a cup of something warm, a notebook and pen and start writing – don’t think, just write.

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This is my second depiction of Caillech Bheur. I decided last month that I really miss making dolls and I wanted to spend this year exploring different forms.

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Caillech Bheur – The Hag of Winter

This is the first attempt at creating a polymer clay and wire sculpture. I blended blue clay with doll clay to get the deathly gray color fitting for the Goddess of Winter. She’s  been painted with a dry brush technique to give her a ‘frosted’ look.

I attached her to a wood block, which I decorated with modeling paste to give that rugged winter landscape look.

Her hair is made with Speckled Tweed recycled silk yarn from Darn Good Yarn. *my newest obsession*

Her cloak and pussy hat were crocheted with scrap yarn I had on hand.

Why a pussy hat? Because she’s an ancient and incredibly powerful Goddess. And she totally supports our movement away from the patriarchy. The path forward is always about finding and honoring the balance between the Feminine and Masculine aspects of our society.

Her staff, said to be covered with human flesh, is carved with ancient Celtic writing and Ogham characters.

Caillech Bheur is known as the Storm Bringer who, through bitter winds and blizzards, changed the landscape.

She is also said to be the  Goddess of Sovereignty offering us the right to govern our own lives. This offering is accompanied by cold, hard honesty that may be brutal and painful but is always necessary to our personal development.

Her themes relate to balance, cycles, overcoming struggle and rebirth.  She is said to have fostered many children and is the protector of wild animals.

I hope The Cailleach visits you as you take some time this winter to reflect. I hope she offers you guidance and sovereignty to become Ruler of your World.

 

It’s 2019 B!tches!

Yeah for the new year! Are you feeling feisty and ready to conquer? I am.

It’s been awhile since I’ve made a Spirit Doll. It’s been awhile since I’ve connected with any specific Goddess.

The last two years have been rough. I feel like I’ve been in constant contact with my personal guides and ancestors, begging them to help me process the anger and the outrage. Frustrated by my inability to make the big changes that the world needs right now.

Some artist excel in that kind of energy.

I don’t.

So no art and very little writing; most of that was scrapped because I couldn’t stop the venom from leaching into it. If I couldn’t contribute to the greater good, then I shouldn’t be adding to the collective misery. Those writings will stay private.

2017 is long gone and 2018 is over.

Welcome 2019 and this little swirly ball of hope and light; This warm tingly desire to create art.

So I sat down one night after the kids were asleep. I wrapped myself in the warm fuzzy blanket that my (soon to be) daughter-in-law gifted me, lit a candle and called in my ancestors.

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What do I want? I asked them, What is the potential of this tiny seed I feel swirling around in my magic?

(because you can’t manifest if you don’t know what you want.)

I needed clarity, I needed a picture in my head and a feeling in my heart.

I didn’t have to wait long. I felt the warm glow of hope. I visioned a pictures of dolls, fully sculpted and clothed in funky fibers, bright colors and pussy hats. Goddesses, spirits, and physical representation of energy and abstract ideas.

I felt my crazy Aunt Joy, who passed away last summer. She too, was a doll maker and jack of all arts. Her daughter gave me all her doll making supplies. Bright colors and radical ideas were kind of her thing.

Yes, this is what my soul desires. To re-connect with the hopeful parts of myself, to reach out and offer the world a little bit of my enthusiastic optimism.

Then we had a planning session. Because they know me. I was given strict instructions.

  • No more than 6 dolls this year.
  • I must have a clearly defined project design sheet before I can start.
  • I must log my time and materials.
  • No ridiculous deadlines that make me dread the making process

I’m also allowed only one alternate art type to clean my pallet.  They’re pushing for art journal. They tell me Art journals are needed plus I enjoy the process of making them. I have a tendency to let my creative to-do list get excessively long, try to do it all and then burn out in frustration.

Maybe because it’s January, or maybe it’s because it’s a rather mild winter, or maybe it’s just the Old Hag calling to me. I’ve decided to re-visit with Cailleach Bhuer. It’s been 5 years. I think she has something else to tell me.

Pictures will be coming soon, I’m taking my time, enjoying the process.

What are your big plans for 2019? What are your personal conquests for the year?

Drop me a note and let me know so I can cheer you on.

 

 

For the Love of Daffodils

A few weeks ago I joined a group that is all about learning and making Flower Essence. I love flowers. I keep a garden. I collect plant material for Art and Spells. I knew nothing about Flower Essence but I jumped in feet first!

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The first flowers to come up in my garden  were Daffodils. Big ones and Little ones. These were the beauties that agreed to lend me their essence. Daffodils are toxic so I didn’t pluck their flowers. I just set my jar of water next to the plant in the bright sun for a few hours.

I buried some banana peels around them first, as a thank you.

When I retrieved my jar of water I felt a surge of cheerfulness. It’s not a common emotion for me. Happy, yes. Content, often.

Cheerful?  ummm…no. Cheerful has it’s own signature.

The water definitely had it’s own vibration and it was a cheerful one 🙂

I also realized after the fact that I collected the essence on 4-11-14. According to Doreen Virtue’s Angel numbers it pretty much says:

“Angels are helping you to keep your thoughts positive so that you only attract your highest and best out comes. “

The one thing I’ve always been bad at is keeping records of  magical workings. I’ve been dabbling for years and I kind of recall the different results, but I can’t be sure on a lot of things  because I didn’t write it down.

So beginning with the Daffodil Flower Essence, I’ve decided to have fun with my research and results!

 I’m keeping records my way. In bold color. With personal drawings and fun quotes and odd facts!

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I suppose when I get around to mustering up spells and amulets and magical recipes, they too will be written more artfully than a standard Book of Shadows.

I’m discovering that The Art of Flower Essence is more in the Intuition needed to ‘hear’ the message and ‘feel’ the vibrational energy.

Obviously I got “cheerful’ from them but some of the other  messages were:

  • Shine.
  • Inner Light.
  • No more Doubt.
  • Listen.
  • Know.

These messages correlated with what I researched. Which is awesome but it makes me wonder if I’m only feeling what I expect to feel. So yesterday I was out collecting the dying flower heads for amulets and spells, the hyacinth began to beckon me. Dancing and singing and teasing, I decided to collect the essence before I researched, so as to accurately compare my data with others. I let you know how that worked.

 

And not to disappoint anyone, The daffodils did request their own likeness and I’ve begun and Spirit doll in their honor! I have everything ready. I just need to sit down and do it!

**Update – the Daffodil doll is finished and can be found here!

Although it is the last Daffodil project on my list and I’m not sure if I want to move on just yet.

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