So, I completely forgot to put up a post in November. Oops! I’ll be playing catch up here. (In other words, longer post, here we come!)
- Samhain went well, even though we had to do things virtually. People found it meaningful and moving, and we had some good conversation at the end.
- A long day of coven discussions on November 14th including rune discussion (more below) and our first Dedicant class for our new Dedicants.
- I set up and explained the virtual Yule exchange for our coven.
- More Dedicant class on the 21st, covering Pagan research and how to do it better (and how it’s different than other things we might learn.)
I drove down to see my mother (and brother and his family) on October 24th. It was great to see them. (Mom had some serious but vastly improved non-Covid health issues in early September, so getting to see her was great.)
I took the week of November 2nd off work, and got a bunch of things done, which felt great. There’s a web redesign at work that’s been eating more brain space than I’d like.
I also finished the big chunk of redesign work for Seeking (you’ll see everything should be consistently formatted finally, with an image suitable for linking on Pinterest at the bottom of every post.)
- December 5th: Rune discussion (Gebo and Wunjo) and Dedicant class (introduction to psychism and energy work).
- December 19th: Yule, plus more Dedicant class (a deeper dive into “how do we do ritual”.)
We did a coven Yule virtual exchange, which had a couple of minor bumps, but I think everyone enjoyed it, and it was nice to be able to do something thinking about a particular person’s tastes.
One of this year’s Dedicants decided that they were not interested in continuing this past week, so there’s been a little bit of sorting that.
(I expect that at least half the people who express interest at any particular stage before initiation won’t continue for some reason. Often it’s a good one, like a new job taking a lot more time, or a move for a good reason. So this is mostly sorting this out, and recalibrating some things in my head since we’ve only got one Dedicant now.)
I’ve been doing some house cleaning as part of the run up to Yule. (I might be procrastinating cleaning out the fridge as I write this.)
Last year, I took a bunch of time off over the winter holidays, and I’m doing that again this year. As part of a ‘hearth and home’ devotion, I plan to:
- Up All Night vigil with the folks at The Cauldron
- Spend some time with Mother Holda
- Do some spinning over the 12 days between Solstice and New Year’s (this is when I spin yarn for ritual use for our Imbolc, plus my own use.) This year’s is Sweet Georgia’s Phoenix Rising in a superwash BFL. I also maybe bought a new spindle I’ll be having fun with.
- A bunch of baking.
- Several Yule and winter concerts through Online Concert Thing (they’ll have more concerts coming in 2021)
- A lot of November’s free time (such as it is was) was taken up by doing NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). I won, which is delightful, writing a book set in 1901 on an ocean liner. (I’m finishing it up right now.)
- Thanksgiving is not a big family holiday for me (my parents are British) but I roasted a chicken for myself and did a bunch of writing-related things.
- I released another of my romance books right after Thanksgiving – this one has explicit polytheism, healing baths, and a touch of divine magic, so it feels a lot more personal than some of my others in that realm.
I’m taking the last two weeks of December off work (it’s a total of 7 vacation days, due to the holidays) and looking forward to tackling a couple of big writing related projects, plus my seasonal reorganisation of my closet and pantry.
As I mentioned, while normally we’d have been doing some initiations and moving forward with some things we do after initiation, that hasn’t been an option this year. Instead, we’re doing some fairly low-structure discussions about runes and things they bring up, using Taking Up the Runes by Diana Paxson as a starting point.
(My hope is people at least read the chapter and ponder it some before showing up, but we’re designing it so people can participate even if they don’t manage to do the prep work.)
We’re using those to discuss both stuff about the runes in specific, but also for a wider ranging discussion about magic and ritual and witchy good stuff related to whatever those runes are about. For the most recent discussion, we had some great conversations about joy and gifts and obligations of gifts, and what patterns we’ve tangled ourselves up in sometimes.
Thinking about 2021:
I’m pretty sure none of us are sure what 2021 is going to hold. I’m still working remotely, and right now I’m assuming that’s going to continue until at least April or May of next year, quite possibly into the summer.
(I’ve got multiple things that make me high risk for Covid, so I’m a) being super cautious and basically not going out but b) qualify for the vaccine early in phase 2 of Massachusetts’s announced guidelines for getting the vaccine, so right now, guessing I’ll manage that somewhere between March and May. But I also work in a building that has medically fragile students.)
But I am assuming that eventually in there I will be going back to my commute and working in the office. So I’m thinking a lot about what habits I can build now that will make life easier when I have to start doing that again, and thinking through what other things will change in my life.
(Including, I hope, an eventual return to in-person coven work, at least some of the time.)
One of the things I’ve been thinking about is what stuff I don’t want to spend time doing in 2021, and what stuff I want to do more of.
Not so much in 2021:
My newsletter is, okay probably not a thing that’s going to happen very often. I’ll probably still do a couple, but not on any kind of regular schedule.
(It takes an irregular amount of time for me to build up enough links to do something that feels like a useful size, and it turns out that kind of irregular thing is super hard for me to plan time for.)
Not complicating the day to day life stuff. One thing that being at home has taught me is that the more I reduce complex decision making about what I do about the routine stuff (exercise plans, cooking, etc.) the happier I am, and the more brain I have for things like writing.
I’d already done this with clothing, but I’m working on doing it with household chores, with exercise, and with meal planning. Basically, thinking about it once and then just doing the thing is working for me well. (I do regular planning time on Saturdays, which helps this.)
Going anywhere: My original plans for 2020 involved four trips, none of which happened, and I’m also expecting not to travel in 2021. (The one convention I was hoping to make it to has rescheduled to January 2022, which was smart of them.)
I am hoping to start seeing other humans socially in person somewhere in the second half of 2021, but we’ll see how that goes.
Lots of new content for Seeking: There will be some! Just, I’m expecting this will be a year when I add things as they come up, or I get a burning desire to write them, but probably not a regular supply of new articles.
(I am very question motivated, so if there’s something you’d like to see me tackle, let me know, and there’s a better chance it will appear after I’ve had time to think about it.)
More in 2021:
Coven stuff continues, of course, though I think the current plans are at a nice stable place in terms of time and energy commitment for me. t
I’m in the early planning stages of a project about how to go about learning Pagan and witchy stuff in a way that works for your brain, schedule, and available time. (Plus of course your interests.)
My thought is that this will be an online course (at a very reasonable price point: I’m thinking in the $5-10 range for each piece with some bundling options as I produce more material.)
If there are topics you’re interested in around this, drop me a note on the contact form.
I have big ambitious writing plans for my romance writing in the form of four books (that’s the pace I’ve done the last couple of years) plus some novellas, which are a new thing to sort out.
I’m pretty clear on most of what this is going to involve, but I need to spend some time planning how to make it all happen and schedule it around coven time and other things I do.
There’ll be a series of posts here coming in the week of the 28th about my planning, (Why here? Because a bunch of it I structure based on planetary days, and I figure you all might have some interest in that.)
Still working on figuring out getting more music in my life, the ongoing thing of my life, but … this is a good time to do some more, right?