Friday, May 29, 2015

Wellspring 2015

Well this is going up a few days later than I planned, do to being tired, then burning myself. I wanted write something up on Wellspring 2015 as this was my first Major Druid event. All in all the weekend was amazing; the weather aside from Friday night was wonderful camping weather. Friday night it was bitter cold, but we did have enough equipment to keep up warm. Something I learned though is if it is too cold my breath will condense before leaving my CPAP mask which is no fun. The remaining nights were not bad (Saturday) and perfect (Sunday.) The daytime weather was also great, even warm enough that I would have used the pool if it was open.

There were two things from the weekend that really made it stand out. One was the warrior games, and the people of the warrior’s guild. The second was the main ritual. Each of these events spoke to me in very profound ways, and in very different ways. I will address each of them, and the only fair way is to do so in the order I attended them. I am not sure if I could say which my favorite was, so doing them in order is the way to go.

The warrior games: Saturday morning…
The games took place Saturday morning, and I really wish I had decided to play in them before that morning. This would have allowed me more than a few moments between matches to work on my bardic piece. It would have allowed me to practice on Friday, and I would have met some of the guild a night earlier. This was a truly amazing group of people. This event was a real home coming.  By the end of the event I knew I would be bringing these games home with me, and coming up with a way to do them with my grove. I have already bought rock for the stone throw and stone and peg. I am planning out purchases, and also am redesigning my new workout schedule to include games as part of the work outs. I will soon be joining the guild, and look forward to seeing where this is going. I have heard it said that no one is born a warrior, but I am not so sure. I knew I was one from a young age, and with lead to me joining the Army as soon as I was allowed. Once I left the Army, I thought I had left that part of my life behind, yet now I am not sure, I believe I have a place within the guild of Warriors in ADF.

My awards from the Warrior games:

My purchase of stones to train with:

64 pounds of Rocks, I now need to figure out what each ome weighs.

The main ritual: Sunday night...
Saturday night around dinner time I developed a horrible headache, and headed for bed very early. I drugged myself pretty well, to deal with both headache and my allergies, and took a nap, or so I though. I slept all night and I slept hard. When I woke on Sunday, I was still pretty out of it, and stayed that way most of the day. Amy and I went out for food, off site for dinner, and I had hoped that it would help and it did not. I was thinking of skipping the ritual, but with Amy having a part, and with her talking about how amazing they are, I decided to attend. Jen was a saint and gave me a couple peppermints that helped soothe my stomach. So going into the ritual I felt like someone had run me over. By the end, I was in amazing shape. I may write up the ritual, as a latter post but honestly I was so invested in experiencing it that I am not sure just how much I remember. I do know that when we invited all of the shining ones whom we have worked with into the circle, that Sigyn was there, and that she gave me more energy. And or reduced my fatigue. I remember the point at which I felt her hand on my brow, and the starting to feel better right after, and continuing to feel better as the night went on. Watching the clergy work was something to behold. When I was a child, well late teen, I thought about going into the Christian clergy. Obviously that did not happen. However, I have been giving thoughts to what I will do once I finish my dedicant path, and the clergy may be something I pursue.  

I also need to mention the Artisan guild contest. I had entered 3 Items, and though I did not win, it was great fun entering. The people I lost to I am more than will to admit were better than me. ADF has some truly amazing artists.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

A bag for my Runes

Thank you Amy!

Well as I had mentioned before I have finished my set of handmade runes. I was goig to look around online for a nice sack to keep them in, but Amy was having none of that. She told me that she would make a bag for me or help me make a bag. We pulled out the tub of fabric she has, and she allowed me to choose whatever I wanted. I looked at almost everything she had, and kept being drawn to a beautiful hand dyed fabric. We pulled it out and Amy asked what size bad I wanted. I showed her the approximate size I wanted it, and then things were put on hold for a bit. Well Tuesday, while I was working on a cake for a grove mates birthday, Amy was nice enough to make the bag for me. She did an amazing job, used French seams an all. Here is a photo of the sack, I don’t think I could have bought a better bag for my runes.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

My 1st Tattoo

It has taken me years but I have finally gotten my 1st tattoo. This may not seem like a major accomplishment, but for years I had resigned myself to never having one. Over the years I have attempted other tattoos, but major issues kept coming up. My 1st attempt happened when I was in the Service, and a friend and I were going to drive to Pittsburgh, to a famous artist to be tattooed,(I don’t remember what I was planning.) When we pulled out of his driveway he rear ended another car, and though we were not going fast, the accident sheared off him engine mounts and pretty much totaled his car. The second tattoo, I had another appointment, I had chosen the tattoo, and all was set, and then my marriage fell apart. My ex-wife and I had made our appointments the same day, and though she was able to make it to her appointment, I was reeling from the divorce and did not make it. The Third attempt was also thwarted by a car accident, I had found a place here in Lansing, and the day of my appointment my mother was in a car accident and totaled my parent’s car, and broke her arm. Needless to say I was at the hospital instead of getting tattooed that night. I took this as a sign that I was not to get tattoos.

That feeling lasted until a few years ago. When I felt pilled to get a tattoo, I began looking and for a while I thought I wanted a greenman tattoo, but that did not feel right. As time went on I was leaning more and more towards a tree, the tree. I wanted the worldtree represented and I started looking at various images. It was not until I was in a tattoo studio looking around on the internet while my friend was tattooed that I found something close.  I showed the photo to the tattoo artist, said I want something like this, with x changes, and in grey-scale, and he said sure. The tattoo was actually just drawn on in red sharpie, then free hand tattooed, and he could not have done a better job.

So here is the tattoo……

Friday, May 8, 2015

My Grove necklace is done

Below is a photo on the necklace I have made to hold my grove pendant. if you are interested in the meaning of the various components you can click here.

The new necklace is a serious upgrade from my previous necklace, that was made as a place holder for the new one.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

The Runes are done!

After a bit of hard work, though not as much as it could have been, my handmade set of Elder Futhark runes are done. I currently have 2 sets that I have bought, a gemstone set that I associate with the Shining Ones, a set made of Buffalo bone that I use for work with the ancestors. I decided to make a set that I would associate with the nature spirits, and in this I think I may have failed. (More on that later*.)

These runes are mostly hand made by me, the only place I had machine assistance with in the cutting of the wooden disks from the chosen branch.  The branch that was chosen was a dried limb from a fallen cedar tree. that fell in a thunderstorm. The cedar was chosen as the grove I belong to is Cedarsong, the fact that it fell during a storm, ties it in closely to Perk┼źnas one of the Baltic gods of the grove.  The disks were cut from the same branch that I use to represent the Tree on my alter. Once the disks were cut, I took them to the Beltane 2015 fire watch, and sanded them throughout the night, doing my best to invest as much positive energy into the wood as I could. I then burned the runes into the disks, and polished them with a mixture of oils and beeswax imbued with cedar wood essential oil.  I am very pleased with the final product. I have enough blanks to make 2 more sets of rune stones from this branch, and I do plan to make them. I just need to determine what the will be used for. Most likely as gifts of auction items.

I will begin to use these runes for my daily rune drawing.

* Here is the more on that latter, though I was planning on this being my nature spirit set of runes, I do not think that this is the case. (I will look for a set to use with the nature spirits.) With the work that went into this set, the bulk of this work being done during a fire watch, the energy I poured into them, and the strong tie the have to Perk┼źnas, I think this set is going to me my general use set, and the set that get used most often. I will get a nature set, and that one and the other2 will be used when I really need to focus on one set of the kindred. 

The fire that was lit for the Beltane ritual, (and that I helped watch all Saturday Night) this is right at dusk, just after my senior druid lit the fire and blessed the fire. For a good portion of the night I sat here and chatted with friends old and new, and sanded the disks for the runes. The energy around the fire was perfect for crafting, and I believe the work that went into the runes that night helped imbue them with clean positive energy.