Resolutions

I never make resolutions, goal or target set, at New Year or otherwise, so when I saw this post by Tiny Buddha on Facebook today and found myself drawn to a phrase in the image I decided that this year was different and I would make just one……..

BE AWSOME 

So if you are about to make yours it might be worth following this link before you do:

Tiny Buddha  

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Happy New Year

Well its the last calendar day of the year and although it doesn’t bear any correlation to the wheel of the year nor this year to the seasons, it still feels appropriate to take a moment to mark the day.

There won’t be any big celebrations tonight, just a quiet meal in, something sparkly to drink and Jules Holland’s Hogmanay on the tele so we know when it’s actually midnight 🙂

Usually this is a good time for reflecting but these last few weeks, since Samhain really, there has been plenty of opportunity for that so this year I am using today for being grateful.

Having survived Storm Desmond and Storm Frank over the last weeks I am grateful I live near the top of a hill and so have a warm dry house. I am grateful that we still, unlike many, have power, thanks to a much improved service, when we first moved here this wouldn’t have been the case. I am also grateful that our nearest town having been badly flooded twice this month is picking itself up, drying itself out and is in the process of getting itself reopened, thanks to the resilience of those who work there, the civil defence, fire brigade etc and all who have been able to get in to help. It would be badly missed if it wasn’t there.

I am also grateful that I don’t suffer from depression or SAD and would like to spare a thought for all who do and for those who are missing at the moment, those who couldn’t see their way to stick around for whatever reason and for the families they have left behind, some them still unsure of what has happened to those who have gone missing. The hype around Christmas, the dark, overcast days haven’t helped anyone but at least most of this has passed, for now at least, and in between the showers we have glimpses of sky, some of it blue and even some watery sunshine. I hope this helps.

I am grateful that as the pages of the calendar turn and we move into 2016 I have as always, much to look forward to. I hope that whoever you are and wherever you are reading this, that you too can say the same.

Happy New Year everyone

 

 

Pagan Planet

The brand new, hot off the press  ‘Pagan Planet’ published by Moon Books, is now available.

It is so new I haven’t had chance to read and review it yet but it does contain a contribution by yours truly amongst others.

Follow this link for more information: Pagan Planet 

Winter Solstice

I know a few people are surprised when they hear Solstice is 4.49am on 22nd December this year and having seen this online today thought it helped explain what is going on 🙂

When is the shortest day of the year?

Solstice Blessings for whenever you are celebrating

Darkness to Light

We are just about to enter the darkest part of the year, the few days that lead up to the Winter Solstice on 21st/22nd December.

Usually I love this time of year, the chance to sink into the darkness, to drop into the void, release, let go and be reborn into the light as the wheel of the year turns once again. I always enjoy Winter Solstice more than Summer Solstice because as much both Solstices offer the chance to reflect, release and move on, the Winter Solstice also offers the promise of brighter times ahead, the ‘stretch in the day’ as we say here.

This year though the run up to Solstice has been difficult even before we get into the next few days. I have lost count of how many times I have heard someone say to me that they will be glad when Solstice is over. I don’t think I have ever heard this before.

The reason for this is that in Ireland we have had very bad weather; storms, floods, weeks where it hasn’t stopped raining and days where there has not really been any daylight. This has come on top of a very poor, cool, summer with little in the way of sunshine.

I don’t suffer from SAD, depression or anything similar plus I am lucky enough to have had winter sunshine, yet I am very aware of the effect that the lack of light is having on me. I don’t think I have ever been as aware of the dark days ahead as I am at the moment.

Solstice will come and go, the days will grow longer, the darkness will lose its grip. I am just hoping that in the days ahead there will be enough light for us to notice this.

Blood, sweat and tears

I’m not quite sure what I’m doing here, what I’m writing about even, but it just seemed right to stop by and say something, whatever it turns out to be.

I’ve actually been doing a lot of writing the last few days, just not here it seems.

I had an article to write for my publishers for a compilation they are planning. The deadline for this is the 8th January which, when I put myself forward to do it in September, seemed a long way away. This week though I realised that it wasn’t a long way away at all and that with Solstice, Christmas, New Year and all goes with it, in between, the time would soon vanish.

Writing for me isn’t something that rolls off the pen, or in this case, keyboard easily, it really does take blood and sweat although I usually avoid the tears. I need to generate an idea, let it breathe, germinate and then grow into something that has the possibility of being a column, an article or something more. In terms of the aformentioned article I’d had the idea, it had had plenty of time to germinate but it refused to grow. I’d researched, made notes, started and stopped over and over again but nothing much happened with it. Sometimes when it gets like this I take a shamanic journey for guidance and usually I get the spark that tells me where to go with it all but this time…….nothing.

Then yesterday, on a brighter, less dark day than we have had for some time that spark came and despite distractions that included a walk on the beach and getting ready for a night out with the locale women’s group the article wrote itself at long last.

Today I sent it off in to the ether. Hopefully it has arrived at its destination and is acceptable as that would mean I can concentrate on other writing, that half finished book or on new ideas perhaps. Or who knows, it may even free me up to get back here more often.

My Home Town

We all see the posts on Facebook and Twitter asking us to shop locally, to keep money in the community and we all click the like button or maybe even share a heart to show we love it. How many of us though put our money where our mouth is, avoid the cheaper retail chains and spend our hard earned cash in the smaller, albeit sometimes slightly more expensive local, owner run, shops?

I for one will be doing exactly what I say I’ll do this year, for our small town, already blitzed from floods six years ago has been hit yet again. The storms over the last few days have once again caused the Bandon River in Co. Cork to flood the town of Bandon.

A majority of our shops are single businesses, run by people who managed to reopen after the last floods, some without insurance, and who were just starting to look forward to the Christmas period when they were flooded out again. Some of the shops will not reopen of course, their owners worn out and disillusioned by the lack of flood relief system that was promised six years ago but is still to materialise. Many though have gamely worked over the weekend so they can reopen in the morning, to show they are not defeated by the floods.

Having lived in the area for 17 years now and having worked in Bandon for some of these I know people in many of the businesses in town, they deserve my support and the support of the community and I hope this year is the busiest, most profitable Christmas ever for them. They deserve it. Without their resilience we would not have a town.