Sunday, October 31, 2010

Results of the Samhain swap!

**don't forget to enter my giveaways!  They end Mon, Nov. 8th.**

What a wonderful thing!  I'm so glad that I was able to participate in the Samhain swap, hosted by Faerwillow over at ~serendipity~ (  The premise was to gift 3 (or more) things to the person you were paired up with, and then on Halloween we would all open our packages!

I was paired with onreeones from One Day at a Time (, and boy is she one generous lady!  What makes me really sad is that I can't find my camera charger, because I want to show you all what I got!  They're soooo beautiful!  For now I shall have to be content describing it all for you, but I shall be going on a hunt for the charger and as soon as I find it you can bet pictures will be posted!

When I first opened the box I was greeted with an explosion of color!  Pretty colored tissues everywhere, hurray!  Then something dark caught my eye, and subsequently my breath, because the most beautiful black-orange-silver flowered/ribboned barrette caught my eye.  How perfect for Halloween!  And right beneath it the most beautiful metal ornament halloween witch, so glittery!  (she must have realized I'm a bit of a magpie, lol!  I love sparkly!)

Next I discovered the most beautiful little autumnal wreath, with dried apples (they smell like apples and cinnamon and nutmeg, yum!) and fall colored/themed ribbons, so beautiful!  I'm trying to figure out just where to put it up...

But the last two, oh, they really made me catch my breath.  The most exquisite fall leaf-styled dish (which is now serving up my recently roasted pumpkin seeds!) and two absolutely gorgeous fall-leafy pieces of jewelry.  I wasn't sure at first if they were necklaces or bracelets, but decided they were both!  I'm wearing one as a choker and the other as a bracelet as I write this, and I really wish you could see them because they are sooooo beautiful!!!  The colors are all red and gold and brown, with some of the most fun beads!!  Little brown leaf-shaped beads with golden veining, read beads with a design on them that look like paint splatters, shiny gold beads and bumpy bronze beads.....GORGEOUS!!!!!

I can't wait to show you!  Onreeone, thank you so much!!!!  I hope you like your package too!

Happy Halloween/Samhain, one and all!!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Hey! That was unexpected!

**Don't forget to enter my giveaways!  The close Mon, Nov. 8th!**

So today was halloween costume day at work.  I went in my 'gypsy' getup.  Apparently there was a costume contest, and I got third place!  Woot, $10 I didn't have before!  Yay!

Here's my costume...well, for the most part.  This is my garb for the larp I go to, Nero.  This is my character Jacylinn!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

So I've been abandoned...

By my loyal followers!  D:<  Does no one read my blog anymore, or is it just that I have that many non-continental US followers out there?  Alright then, here's the deal:  I will be running my own giveaway for the non-continentalers.  I will be giving away 3 bindrunes, custom made for the winners.
Bindrunes are talismans that combine different runes of the Elder Futhark for a desired quality, for example safe travel, health, good times/camaraderie, etc. 
This giveaway is for all the non-continental U.S. people who can't enter the S.J. Tucker giveaway.  For every post you make on a social network about the S.J. Tucker giveaway, you get one entry (this excludes Facebook unfortunately as Facebook has rules against that sort of thing).
To enter this giveaway:
You must have a way for me to contact you
You must comment on THIS post with a link to the post you made.
Each entry must have a separate comment.
Got it?  Good.  By the Gods I WILL get the word out!!!
((PS~ those who aren't eligible for the SJ Tucker giveaway can still listen to her music here:

Monday, October 25, 2010

Review and GIVEAWAY: Awesome Pagan Musician!!

So in my endless quest for fantastic pagan music about a month ago I stumbled onto an artist that I absolutely fell in love with while browsing youtube.  Celebratory, reverent, relating myths...I was impressed with the songwriting, with the powerful melodies, and most of all with the singer's pipes (YOWZA can that girl belt!!).  I found myself soaring in the sun's mighty rays with 'Firebird', quiet and mystical with 'Witch's Rune'...I enjoyed these songs deeply, but for some reason didn't search beyond what was available on a single channel.

Well, Fate had different ideas for that.  A week or two ago I was contacted by Ariel Publicity wanting to introduce me to a pagan artist--yes, you guessed it, the very same one I had recently found!  I was intrigued, said so, and *poof!* a cd was on its way.

So without further ado, I would like to introduce (or reacquaint) you lovelies with the music of S.J. Tucker.
Of course, I didn't spend my week (im)patiently waiting for the cd doing nothing, no sir.  No, a few raps on the head was all it took for Fate to get my attention, so I was off and running searching youtube, her site, her blog, trying to figure out 'just who is this S.J. Tucker?  just what is her music like?'.   

Well m'dears, what I found impressed me.  S.J. Tucker, also known as skinnywhitechick, also known as s00j, has been touring the US since 2004 and has released several albums--all of that new music to listen to!  I dove right in, of course.

It turns out that the songs I had initially listened to were from her album dedicated to her pagan fans, "Blessings" (HIGHLY recommend by the way!).  But there's more...oh, so much more.  You see, this chica has released many more albums than just "Blessings", as lovely as that album is.  Her music isn't exclusively pagan (she's a musician after all, she sings life--ALL of life), but I can tell you it is all fun, and highly enjoyable.

Ever wondered what would have happened if Wendy had taken Hook's deal and become a part of his pirate crew?  Well now you can find out thanks to s00j's Wendy Trilogy! (three songs telling what REALLY happened...Wendy really is much cooler, after all.)  Ever worry if an alligator might have found its way into your house?  S.J. has it in a tango!  Ever wondered if that salad is really as good for you as people say?  Beware, for it is the notorious 'Salad of Doom'!  (I like to call it the Salad of DOOOOOOOM....!!  Because really it's more fun to say it that way.)

But again, there's so much more than that!  It's not just pagan, it's not just fun/silly/ridiculous/laugh-out-loud (is there a better way to say that and really express what I mean?).  Her music is also deep, it's also contemplative, it's also reverent...I think I said it best before.

She sings LIFE.
If you do a bit of your own research you will see this repeated all over the place, but I'm going to repeat it here as well because it is honestly just so right for her.  "Music is communication for SJ Tucker. It is how she tells stories, how she shares lore and myth, how she interacts with the world...without her songs and stories, she is nothing. With them, she is herself." (

I completely agree.  I know my exposure is a bit limited here, but I've been listening to her music, I've been watching her live performances up on youtube and listening to her interaction with the crowd.  The way I perceive it, its like she takes a little piece of herself, her experience, gift-wraps it in some pretty melody and presents it to her audience in pure expression.  (If you've read this far into the review comment about 'musical expression' for an extra entry in the giveaway!)  With some of her songs (for me, Neptune) its almost like the music isn't there.  You hear it and enjoy it, but what you experience rather is an emotion, a concept, transferred directly from her to you using the music as a vehicle.

And when I finally, finally got the cd in the mail, I was giddy.  I was ecstatic.  I was like a schoolgirl skipping and giggling because I got to have a little piece of that experience.  I spent the evening trying to find a way to listen to the music in the shower without electrocuting myself.  (after much testing and consideration, I would recommend simply waiting until after your shower--you don't want to miss anything!)  'Neptune' is on this cd!  And so is 'Salad of Doom'!  And, and...!  Well, a bunch of new songs that I wasn't already familiar with, but also fell in love with!  I love 'Ravens in the Library' and 'Cheshire Kitten' and 'Were-Owl', but oh, oh 'Witchka'!  I must say that I do adore 'Witchka'.  (see the story behind the song here:  The sound quality isn't the best, but its super cute!)  I can totally see this little girl all in black with a book of spells giggling madly.  It's just such a fun image!
This is Mischief, S.J. Tucker's latest album.  This is the cd I got!  There are several songs that deal with relationships, but also songs that consider the quest for knowledge, the ability to find happiness even in your day job, and of course...just how dangerous is your salad?  Ranging from fun and lighthearted to deep and contemplative and everywhere in between, there's a little something for everyone in this album.  

I do wish that lyrics had been included in the little booklet...I have trouble understanding lyrics sometimes, and like to know just what is written.  We do however get a lovely little descriptive piece for each song...not necessarily describing the song, but rather it is added content that can influence your perception of the song.  Even without the lyrics, I do appreciate the booklet, and really if that's all you have to complain about a cd I'd say you're doing pretty good!  But I love, LOVE the art (and mine came with an adorable little 'trading card' featuring SJ. as depicted as a character from one of her other songs, 'Tough Titty Cupcakes', the raccoon).  With all the variety and artistic talent available in this cd, I dare you not to fall in love with at least one song!

And to give you the perfect opportunity to fall in love ;), S.J. has graciously agreed to give one of her new cds away to one lucky contestant!  That's right, you could own your very own copy of Mischief!  Here are the rules to enter:

Participants MUST have a mailing address in the Continental U.S.

Please make sure I have a way to contact you in case you win!

Please leave a separate comment for each entry.

To enter you must post about this review/giveaway on your blog with a link to this post, then leave a comment here with the link to your post.  It doesn't have to be much, just a sentence or two like:
"Leathra over at Confessions of a Crafty Witch has a review up about the pagan musician S.J. Tucker, and she's hosting a giveaway for S.J.'s latest cd!  Check it out at!"
Of course you can write your own, but if laziness is a factor in you not entering there ya go! ;)

For an extra entry you can browse S.J.'s music ( and comment here about a song you like.

**Edit:  for every post you make on a social network (excluding Facebook) you get an extra entry.  make sure to leave a comment with a link to your post.**

Please note that while you are not required to read the review of S.J. Tucker's work, I would recommend it.  It just  gives you a good idea of what you're trying for.  Good luck!

Contest closes Monday, November 8th.  Now go spread the word!
((Disclaimer:   I received a copy of this cd from the artist for review purposes. The opinions expressed here are 100% my own. I was under no obligation to offer a positive review and received no monetary compensation. The artist has provided a copy of her cd for the giveaway.  I might try and convince S.J. that she needs to make an 'Evil Chocolate Addiction' song to balance out the health-nuttiness of 'Salad of Doom', but that's another matter entirely ~_^. ))

Saturday, October 23, 2010

It's my Fall altar!

Isn't it gorgeous?  Up front we have my wand, to the right are my herb bottles, my black mirror, and my cauldron, to the left we have a small chest full of divination tool and a black smoky quartz cluster, and in the center we have a 'crystal' ball (prolly just glass--it's from that scrying kit you can get in a bookstore) and the newest edition to my altar items--
Isn't this fellow gorgeous?  Sorry the pic is a little blurry, those are the Futhark spiraling and running across the bone.  According to my dad, the great outdoorsman, this is a raccoon skull.  I found it in some high grass by the side of a trail while I was out exploring this past summer, already cleaned by nature.  I let it sun-bleach a bit, cleansed it, and now we have this!

My divination box (again, sorry it's blurry!)  I have two tarot decks, three rune sets, and two pendulums in there!  The only reason there aren't FOUR rune sets in there is 'cause one of them is still with the PPD stuff over at Brigid's.  ^_^;

Have a wonderful day!

Finally, PPD pictures!

Our location:
This is the pavilion at our local park, where we set up.  In front is the snack table, to the left is the divination table (not set up yet) and to the right are our information tables.

The schedule:
Heh, sorry it's sideways, but I'm on my boyfriend's computer and can't find a program that I can flip it with...macs are a little different like that.  Click for a bigger picture, and....well, turn your head a bit.

This is the kid's area!  We had special pagany coloring books, aura fluffing/glitter blessing (ever had one of those before?  They're so fun!)  and face painting.  Plenty of the adults joined in too.  ^_^

Here is half of our information table, which has our group library as well as pamphlets about paganism and our group, Pagans in Touch.  (Being the ones running the whole thing we felt a little justified in including our own information.)  Oh, and of course our beautiful group organizer, Brigid!

(On top of the green pamphlets you can see a rod for our meditation labyrinth--its one of those that I cut my foot open on.  By the time I was done with it that loop on the end was a wide-open hook!)

The other half of our information table, FULL of ritual items--most of this is from Brigid's personal collection!  There are also close-ups below, click for a bigger picture.

Well, that's all the pictures I have for PPD--this is all during setup, and I injured myself just before the event.  I couldn't go to get my camera on my own once I got back, so I just gave my talk and demonstration without.  :(  Wish I had more!
(And sorry bout the weird spacing on pic upload thingy makes it weird....)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

I'm sorry!

I was seriously going to post pics tonight! Not just of PPD, but of my fall altar too! But I can't, you see...the cable that will connect the camera to the computer is missing. BOTH of them. I have no idea where they would be stored, so I'm left to wait until my guy comes home. Don't worry, I'm definitely sharing my altar pics, I just have to be able to get them online! >_<;

((Also, please note: There is now an 'Award Cauldron' page.))

Monday, October 18, 2010

It's a blog award!

Most of you know I'm not too keen on getting awards (those part of the rules that requires I send it to X number of people who are then obligated to pass it on...too much like chainmail which I delete on principal) but there are those kind souls who just want so much to GIVE that somehow they end up on my door. Now, unless I get buried by them, I do try to be courteous and thank-you and answer the questions, but I refuse point-blank to pass it on because I feel like I'm doing the people I'm sending it to a disservice.

Hmm...I'm thinking I should start an Award Cauldron page so I have a place to actually put these things...Well, there's just one with a questionnaire, so here goes!

Thank you so very much Wendy (over at for thinking of me! Wendy was kind enough to nominate me for
award versatile blogger The Magic of Three

Now I'm supposed to share 7 things about me
1) I act, dance, sing, write, paint, sketch, sculpt, knit, crochet, do beadworking, wireworking, and a whole load of other crafty stuff that won't come to mind at the moment...
2) I graduated 1-2 years ago with a Bachelor of the Arts in English
3) Due to #2, I now work as one of the cogs in a debt collection agency
4) The reason I'm not doing something more with my life is because I haven't yet figured out what I want to do...or rather, I have TOO MANY ideas of what I want to do with my life, some realistic, some not, and cannot make a decision on the matter.
5) Umm....I have 4 favorite colors? Green, blue, purple, and silver.
6) Almost there! Umm...umm...I'm really horrible at uploading photos so I can post with them! Wait, you knew that already...crap...
7) ...I can haz chzburgr? (heh! so much for that degree in English thing!)

((PS~ if someone would like to snag this award for yourself you are more than welcome to do so!))

((PPS~ I was in a very humorous mood when I wrote this, so if anyone takes offense PLEASE DON'T. No offense is intended, I'm just enjoying life and I'm not trying to do so at your expense.))

((PPPS~ fun stuff in the works kiddies! Keep you eyes peeled, I'll be having a review of some very talented and fun music up soon!(and maybe the person responsible for said music, we'll see ;P)))

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Oh, wow...

Two absolutely brilliant giveaways over at Confessions of a Pagan Soccer Mom today! First, I'm sure you all know I'm an absolute fiend for rune sets, it looks like this one is made of clay:
Aren't they gorgeous? What a pretty blue! They look sort of iridescent too. ^_^

And next, the most gorgeous little goddess doll ever! All done up in her autumn harvest colors too. ^_^
Isn't she so beautiful? I absolutely adore her! I do hope that I'll win her...I've never had a goddess to go on my altar, despite all the statues I've made they always want to go elsewhere...I wonder, will I finally find one who will stay? Mama Allpa...I'm trying to learn the lessons she has to teach.

Friday, October 15, 2010


So, after a looong evening of crafting frenzy my package for Serendipity's Samhain swap is all set and ready to be mailed out! Now I just need to pack for Nero this weekend...and figure out how to take a shower with one stitched up foot and one weak ankle...and hopefully actually get enough sleep tonight to be able to work tomorrow...

But! An evening full of listening the Inkubus Sukkubus, crafting like a madwoman, and finding little extra things I can slip in and fighting ENDLESSLY with paint that wasn't made for the surface I was painting on...well, it was all a lot of fun, and I absolutely CAN'T wait until Halloween when she opens it and I get to open mine!

I just have too much to do and not enough time to do it in... ^_^;;; Ah well! On to the packing! ((CRAP!!! It's 1:30am already!?!?!?!??))

Saturday, October 9, 2010

It was Eventful!

Pagan Pride Day, for the most part, rocked!! I have some pictures that I managed to take, though they won't be uploaded until tomorrow most likely. Unfortunately I only have pictures from setup...didn't manage to get any during the event.

Guess what?? We had 35 people come through!! It was fantastic, way more than last year! What's more, 15 of those people weren't group members--they were local non-affiliated pagans! Squeeeeeee!

We started setup around 7:30 and were ready by noon! Since I would be doing rune readings all day I had to show off my new divinatory tool--3 eight-sided rune dice! I decided to do a quick little reading for how the day would go. Comraderie, good...insight and learning, even better...and...hardship? Bwah??? Why on earth would we have hardship? I know that there might be protesters, but....

Well, I found out what the hardship was maybe ten minutes before the event started--I sliced my foot open on a metal hook we were using for the meditation labyrinth. Fun! So I got driven to the hospital and spent most of my day waiting for the stitches...of which I now have three in the bottom of my left foot. Yay!

I got back just in time to do my lecture/demonstration (practical magic and bindrunes, respectively) and I did manage to give two readings. Unfortunately it was my LEFT foot that was injured, and its my RIGHT ankle that is bad. So, I'm pretty much a gimp. Keeping weight off the injured foot puts a lot of strain on my bad ankle, so I can't do long stretches of standing and I had to be carried to and from the parking lot to the park where PPD was. *sigh* My first PPD, and I miss most of it. Ah well, I managed to make it for what counted, I just wish I could have experienced all of it! (Even better, I wish one of these years I could make it to a big PPD, or some big pagan festival in general! The closest I get around here are renn faires...)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Waaaah! Pagan Pride Day is this Saturday!

I'm so nervous! The list of what is yet to be done isn't too long, but I'm still super anxious...I've never been to a Pagan Pride Day event before, let alone help run one, so I'm really hoping we can get everything done!

What? Context? Oh! The group that I am discussion organizer for, Pagans in Touch, runs its own little Pagan Pride Day for our area. Last year we had one semi-official PPD--the Peoria PPD decided to disappear a few months before the event so we tried to pick up the ball with a cursory glance from the National organization. 3-4 months to plan and maybe a hundred dollars to use...we did what we could, but it wasn't stellar. I wasn't even able to be there, 1) because it was on my birthday and 2) because my cousin decided to have her wedding on my birthday! Waaah....

Well, this year I'll actually be able to participate in our own little PPD. No vendors, no drumming circle, in a little park just off of ISU campus...but more planning, more organization, and a bit of money actually saved up!
We have a meditation labyrinth, several talks and demonstrations (two of which by yours truly!), a kid's station with aura fluffing, glitter blessings, coloring books, and face painting...a divination table, an information table...and food donations to go to the Midwest Food Bank (because they're the only charitable organization in the area that doesn't mind that we're a bunch of pagans)!

Pagan Pride Day, Oct. 9th, Anderson Park, Normal IL,

((Apparently last year other local groups thought we did an abysmal job and didn't enjoy themselves. Said we dishonored the national organization and couldn't possibly compare to CHICAGO'S PPD. Chicago? We're a handful people who had a few months and about a hundred bucks to pull everything together, and you're snubbing us because we can't compare to CHICAGO???))

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Foot in my mouth AGAIN

Some of you may remember how back in November of last year I made a post about my element switching to fire (original post: I've been air. I've been water. In each I have been quiet, patient, waiting to assess the full situation before making any comment/action. I has long been my habit to let it slide, or just walk away. I was the master of just letting it roll off my back.

I was NEVER rude, impulsive, easily irritated, rash, easily baited, quick to anger, self-serving, or selfish, and I NEVER was snippy if I was pissed off by something.

But now that I'm fire I AM.
And it's pissing me off!!

I've hurt my friends, insulted the love of my life, reduced my beloved sister to hysterical sobs...and while I do feel guilty, I'm quickly consumed with self-righteous anger. "It's not my fault!" the anger shouts "I've got a life and thoughts too! Why the hell should I cow-tow to their whims? It's not like my thoughts don't matter!!"

The anger does have a point. I've never asserted myself. Never gave thought to myself if someone else needed something, even if it majorly inconvenienced me. Others have always gotten the priority, others were always right, and I was just so damn grateful that they were in my life in the first place that I never even MENTIONED that I had to study for a major final the next day and couldn't really afford to drive them two hours to Chicago so they could make a date.

But suddenly now if there's some small injustice, or just something that pisses me off, I'm belligerent, rude, ungracious, insulting. There's all this emotion and passion that I've NEVER had to deal with before in my life, and I just don't know how to deal with it! My love can't even be sarcastic anymore without my blowing up at him! How on earth do I DEAL with all of this???

Yes, there are benefits to being Fire. I'm actually speaking my mind. When I got majorly shafted the other day at work I went and talked with my manager about it instead of just stewing in my self-pity and misery. And for the first time in my life I actually want to have sex because I actually enjoy it. I'm passionate, I'm creative, I laugh loud and long and sing and dance for the sheer joy of life!

But I step on a loooooot of toes on the way. I no longer know how to handle a situation because I just get so consumed with anger. I've always avoided anger like the plague, because I've never been able to see anything positive coming from anger. I never wanted to hurt the people around me like anger has hurt me. But now at the slightest infraction up it flares, screaming for "My way! MY WAY!!!!". Sometimes I love myself, sometimes I can't stand myself.

The worst part of all is I have no idea how to handle the anger. NO IDEA. I've always kept it so very tightly sealed in a tiny little box. Before I became fire I had only ever been truly angry 4 times in my life. Irritated, yes. Angry, never. But then, when I was angry before, it was very very dangerous. While I never let myself get violent, I considered it. It was only with locking every muscle in my body sometimes that I didn't do anything.

Now that I'm fire and get angry all the time, its not nearly as potent, violent, or dangerous. I hurt people emotionally yes, I insult them, and I hate myself a bit for it, but I would never do physical harm. Well, to them at least. At this point the only method I have that remotely manages the anger is to clench my fists so hard that my nails break the skin of my palm. Yeah, I know that's not a good thing at all, but right now it's all I have., I imagine there are a few readers out there going "whoa whoa whoa! Where did all of this come from Leathra? You're always so happy and calm!" Umm...well I'm not ALWAYS angry, and when I am I don't usually let it get to the public sphere. Oh...wait, you're asking why I'm talking about this in the first place? Why that's quite simple.

As the title suggests, I just got pissy/insulting on someone else again, only this time it happened in the blogosphere. I've already written the person in question an apology email, but I was so pissed with MYSELF that I felt the need to post about my issues.

I know that I'll figure out how to truly be fire eventually--this is all just a part of the becoming process. Still, the transition from Air to Water was painless and happened without my notice. My reforging from Water into Fire, however, is full of blood, sweat, and tears. And anger. Lots and lots of anger. I know I'll get there's a matter of time and experience. But it's not easy. Gods know what will happen when it's time to become Earth!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

It's that time of year again...

when my posts will be swamped with giveaway advertisements, lol!
Today's is The Weiser Field Guide to Witches over at Confessions of a Pagan Soccer Mom! Hurray for the 31 days of Hallowe'en!

I've seen this book in Borders before, and I seriously considered picking it up. Not knowing what it was, at first I was like "Ugh, more ridiculous stereotypes. Lovely. Well, it's witchy, I'm a witch, so let's see how bad they mess it up..." ...and they didn't. At all. It's more a chronicle of all things witchy. I'm keeping my fingers crossed!

So I have a theory...

After several failed attempts at trying to fix the comment-ability on my blog, I've come to the theory that perhaps it is my new very pretty fall theme coding that is the problem! *gasp* I'm going to be doing some experimenting, so if you come by and see that my theme is a bit different please try to leave a comment to see if it works. If not PLEASE email me at windchild26ATgmailDOTcom to let me know that it didn't fix the problem.