Animal Totems are all around

Hey there,

Animal Totems are all around – and watching.  Stay tuned.

Sitting here in the Meadowview, wrapped up in a blanket and gazing out over the still, frozen meadow.  The blue roof, which is metal, lets out a “bang” as it contracts, like a living, breathing thing.  Baby, it’s cold outside – and has been for weeks.  Winter is certainly doing its thing this year, so far, as it has only officially been Winter for less than one month.

Already the complaining.  I know, I know.  Your skin is dry, your hair is dry, some have already had the cold or flu that goes hand-in-hand with this, our most least-loved season.  Elderberry and Yarrow tea, Mint honey, Ginger and Lemon – we’ve talked about these before…

Anybody out there embrace this stuff?  Good for you!  Me?  Not so much.  Yes, I am Canadian and no, I don’t do Winter well.  Apart from the aprés sports stuff…I’m pretty good at that. 🙂  Wine, anyone?

I find myself being watched by my Animal Totem, the Red-tailed Hawks, that join me every Winter, on the coldest of days, perched in the Maple tree out by the barn.  I can see them (there are two) out of the kitchen window.  Silent and still, scanning the meadow landscape for their next meal.  They will literally sit there for hours.  So very majestic and gorgeous creatures.

Just keeping a steady eye on all things me – “careful”, they say, “she’s getting close to losing it in this bitter cold.  Someone needs to get outside for a walk”.  Soon.  All is well.  Please remain indoors for now.  Make a cup of tea.  Get out your seed catalogues.  Breathe.

The ordinary arts we practice everyday at home
are of more importance to the soul
than their simplicity might suggest
-Thomas Moore

I’ve also been joined by a couple of crows, in the same tree, but not at the same time, as the Hawks. Crows are very interesting birds.  Some find them rather ominous, but those of us that wear the pointy hats know that crows are something special.  Uh huh.  I’ll let you look that one up.

Should I back up a bit?  Anyone not know what an Animal Totem is?  Ooo, buckle up, we’re about to enter the land of all things woo woo.

So Animal Totems, or Nature Totems are basically symbols of energy.  Now everything holds energy, but this is the kind of energy we manifest and align with our everyday life.  The Totem becomes a symbol of the invisible, the characteristics and activities reveal something of our own powers and abilities.  You can also look at different parts of the animal and what that represents.  For instance, a bird with a sharp beak could symbolize someone who speaks their mind or has a sharp wit.  Perhaps too sharp and that person should think about what they say before saying it.  Or maybe they constantly bicker and pick at things.  See where that’s going?

The Totem can be animal, bird, reptile, insect.  It can be something as simple as an ant.  Think about ants for a moment.  What do they represent?  Discipline comes to my mind.  Patience, industrious, also.  Most people just find them annoying – not disagreeing with you there, but have you ever taken the time to actually watch them?  They are fascinating.  They work together, they have a purpose and goal, they march along the same path and if you disturb what they are working on, they just find another way to accomplish what they set out to do.

Now, do you think that maybe that could send a message to someone?  I do.  Perhaps that someone is having a hard time focussing, or their life has been turned upside down in one form or another.  Or they need to learn to work with others and get along.  All of a sudden, they find ants in a place they have never been before.  Maybe in their house (horrors), but those guys are sending a message…”The ants go marching one by one, hurrah, hurrah…”

When you start really paying attention to nature and what’s going on around you.  Looking at the little things, that’s when you tune in.  That’s when you hear your message.  Listen – it’s there for a reason.  That’s a large part of my woo woo.  Make sense?  Of course, you’re going to have to go outside – and probably put down your phone, to see it.  A walk in the woods can really make you see.  Just sayin’

What speaks to you?  Is there a particular animal that you are specifically drawn to?  Do you see a particular creature constantly when you are outside in nature.  Do you dream about a particular creature?  Does something call to you?  Listen.  The other thing to mention here, is that you may not always have the same Totem – depends on the message that needs to be heard.  But you might.

If all this fascinates you, and you’re interested in reading up a bit on it, or maybe figuring out what your Totem might be, I would recommend this book, Animal Speak by Ted Andrews.  Happy reading.

Even though I’m a crazy cat lady, it always seems to be the birds that speak to me.

What else in the bird world?  Well yesterday, where we set a record here in Southern Ontario for the coldest day in 60 years, a flock of Starlings decided it was a great time to come back from wherever they had been.  Somewhere warmer, no doubt. (I don’t get it either…)  Yup.  They do appear to be early.  I don’t usually see them until end of January/early February.  They can withstand Winter, obviously, but yikes!

I couldn’t fill the feeders fast enough – including the dish of cat food left out for this guy…

I currently have a stray cat that I am trying to get into the house under the blue roof.  It has been at least six weeks that this kitty has been coming by for food, regularly, morning and night.  I can’t get close enough to see if it is male or female, but it doesn’t appear to be a scrawny barn cat, it looks healthy.  It will not let me get close to it.  I feed it on the porch.  It will let me watch it through the window, but as soon as I try to open the door to get close, off it goes.  Now, it is starting to only go far enough that I can’t reach it, so there is starting to be an element of trust.  It knows that I am going to feed it.  But this kitty is out in -30 degree C weather.  It’s driving me crazy that it won’t come in.  I don’t know where it goes when not being fed.  I’m sure it’s in a barn somewhere close by, but still…I have tried setting out the food and water inside the door, with the door open, until the house freezes.  Just last night, it came in long enough to eat the food and then out it went again.  Sigh  I usually am pretty good with cats and turning them around to help them.  This one has me puzzled, but I will persevere. Maybe this, too, is a message for me.  I am listening.

A friend and reader, gifted me with a little glass black and white cat which now sits here with me on my desk as I write.  Thank you again, very appropriate!  You’re right, fits right in with my pointy hat!

I haven’t named this stray kitty yet, which is unusual, because I usually do – I name everything.  Maybe that’s another message. Hmmm  I’ve been receiving a lot of messages lately.  The night sky is telling me there are some big things coming up.  It has been an adventurous couple of years for me – still evolving, still working through, but feeling like it’s not over yet.  Good or bad.  Maybe it’s good this time.  My birth chart reading for this year tells me that once again, this is not a year where I’m just going to coast…UGH.

In the interest of plants, because I am, although there isn’t much growing here these days, there are still the evergreens that can be harvested fresh.  Pine and Spruce needles for tea, for example.  A huge dose of Vitamin C there.  What better time of year to increase your Vitamin C levels?  And what does Mother Nature provide to harvest?  Getting that?

Please keep in mind the Moon phase that you are harvesting though.  Interesting fact:  Around the Full Moon, the sap rises in trees, just as the tides in the ocean get higher and moods change.  You don’t want to harvest around this time as you could damage the tree.  When you respect nature, nature respects you and will give you the help you seek.  Very simple and logical, isn’t it?  That’s what I love about woo woo.

Speaking of the Moon, where are we tonight?  The waning Moon is in Virgo: earthy, practical, fixing and cleaning up the universe, one item at a time.  Making lists, asking questions, making things happen (this all sounds extremely familiar to me somehow…).  I’m pretty sure ants are Virgos – understood?  The Sun is still in Capricorn, another earth sign, so it’s all business today.  January is ruled by Saturn – the planet of maturity.

Today’s colour for getting things done:  blue – how conservative!

I’ll leave you to get things done under your own roof – blue or otherwise.

Until next time,

-Debra

The Woo Woo of Solstice and Yule

 

Hey there,

Happy Solstice and Yule!  The shortest day and longest night of the year.  Yup, it’s officially Winter.  Brrrr Those of us who celebrate Christmas are too busy to notice – we’ve already been getting a good dose of Winter so far this season, here in Canada.  The good news?  After today, the days begin to get longer, meaning we return to the Sun and the light.

Let’s talk about the woo woo of it all.  Just because that’s my thing and I can. 🙂

So the Winter Solstice, or Yule, is actually the beginning of the New Year – the solar year.  We are at a turning point; the Earth’s counter clockwise orbit around the Sun towards the light in the Northern Hemisphere. The Solstice actually happened here in the wee hours of this morning, before sunrise.

Today, we get the southern most sunrise and the southern most sunset of the year.  Starting tomorrow, the Sun will gradually creep northward, little by little, towards the Summer Solstice, where the opposite occurs.  Or, on the opposite side of the world, in the Southern Hemisphere, today they get Summer Solstice and the longest day/shortest night of the year.  As the Earth is actually tilted on its axis, it doesn’t travel in an actual circle around the Sun, it travels in an eliptic, which explains why north of the Arctic Circle and south of the Antarctic Circle, they get those endless days of darkness/sunlight.  Are you with me still? 🙂

The whole Christmas thing?  We know in the Christian faith what that’s all about, but in the land of woo woo…

Yule is the celebration of the Sun God.  The holiday lights that everyone strings up?  They symbolize light and life.  We see ornaments shaped like fruits and suns and stars…also symbolizing light and life.  The fruit and nuts set out in bowls and on the buffet table – that would be the celebration of fertility and the coming bounty of the growing year.  See how that works?

The pine trees and bows that we use to decorate?  Pine, being the most ancient of Yule decorations, represents life everlasting.  Pine in a wreath – the wreath being a circle – represents the symbol of eternity. We hang them on our front entrance doors, right?  The entrance to our homes – life everlasting and eternity.

Adding lights to your Yule tree – that represents divinity.  Red candles and bows and ribbons wound through garlands represent the life force.

The traditional colours, red, white and green:

Red:  represents the life force (blood)
White:  represents the Winter season (snow)
Green:  represents eternal life (greenies that come back to life, season after season – pine stays green all year)

As the Sun sets, we turn on our lights and light our candles and fires in the fireplace, welcoming back the return of the Sun. YAY!

I will be decorating my Yule tree tonight (yup, it is always a real tree) – a little late this year, because, well, you know…but entirely appropriate, given the info above, wouldn’t you say?

So, dear readers, everything is falling into place.  Yes, there will be a toilet in the laundry room so I can have my Mom (who uses a wheelchair) for Christmas this year.  There are now facilities for her use on the main floor…YAY!  A big thank you to all those trades people who have paraded back and forth, in and under the blue roof to get this thing done for me (and my Mom).  All the pretty finishing details are not quite there, but the room is functional – and I have laundry facilities again -HUGE BONUS. 🙂

It didn’t look promising for a while, but despite the worry and the teeth grinding, we’re going to be there.  By Friday evening, I will have my dining room back.  There is much vacuuming to be done…

Look at me going all kittens and flowers in the middle of the chaos that is my life at the moment (it’s not Friday yet)…

I hope you get a little rest and spend some quality time with friends and family – those who matter most, over this coming weekend.  Celebrate whatever and however you do.  Know that the Sun is returning, but for now, cozy up!

Where is the Moon tonight, for our Solstice and Yule?  She’s just entered the fourth quarter in lovely Libra.  The Sun enters Capricorn today.  The colour is white.  Fitting for the beginning of Winter.

Just so you know, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, the Moon will remain in her fourth quarter, decreasing in light (unlike the Sun!) and rising at midnight.  Darkness for those lights and candles.  A good time for drawing back and reflection, which fits at this time of year. She will be in the sign of Scorpio, a feminine water sign – all dressed up and hypnotizing.  An intense and emotional sign, so watch out for those family “issues” around your table!

The colours of the day?

Christmas Eve:  Brown
Christmas Day:  Amber

Not so festive, but maybe some needed grounding under our Scorpio Moon.

In the meantime, this will be my last post before Christmas – you may hear from me next week!  Check back, won’t you?

Green blessings and my hope for a safe, calm and peaceful holiday to you under your roof from me under the blue roof.

Until next time,

-Debra