Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Comfort Me, Transparent Oracle

Have you ever seen Emily Carding's innovative round oracle deck, the Transparent Oracle, published by Schiffer Books?  It is really fun, and a perfect foil to her Transparent Tarot.  They can totally be used together.

I'm a bit in a funk after returning from my trip, and a bit nervous about what comes next as I am not too much looking forward to the next trip, on Friday, so I asked these clear round cards for some comfort.  My cards are Mercury, Gateway: The Celestial Realm, and Element: Fire, which you can see combined here.

Mercury is the planet of communications, as many of us have felt recently while it was in retrograde, and the Gateway card to the Celestial Realm combined with the element of fire suggests I will get comfort from checking the astrological chart for the coming weekend.  It would also likely help me to have some clear communications about what I expect, what is expected of me, and how to bridge the two.  Two of the cards I have are from the direction of Above, and the book's entry from the 13th card of Element: Fire advises that Fire combined with Above cards speak of the power of prayer and divine will.  To me, this suggests two things- One, that I will feel better about the situation through spending time in prayer and meditation, which is always sage advice, but being particularly pointed to it now is telling.  Two, some things about the upcoming trip, and just my life in general this week, are as they should be, are in accordance with the divine will of God, and I don't have a lot of options so I can let go and just trust.  The meditation part will probably help me feel calmer and more readily accepting of whatever may come, and I have been repeatedly been getting messages that meditation is what I need to move to the next level in many areas.  This also relates back to my weekly Tea Leaf Fortune Reading as I need to pay close attention to my health, and be aware of the Angel that is watching over me.  I'm not convinced I need a whole angel just for little old me, but I'll take what I can get.

These cards are from the Transparent Oracle by Emily Carding for Schiffer Books.

Daily Draw - Queen of Rings, Two of Wands, The Fool

My first thought upon seeing these cards was that was me, the Queen of Rings, dancing in the shower like I do, which makes me feel light hearted and happy, like the Fool card.  It also reminded me of the Zumba classes I have started, and how I feel kinda foolish as I learn the steps and moves, but how good it feels to move the body in joy.

Then I thought about how the Queen of Rings looks like she might be a little reticent, holding some of herself back, but the faery in the Two of Wands, she is all in.  She is acting like a focal point to draw all of that energy from the stars and into the plant she is nurturing, and the Fool is jubilant.  He is always an "all in" kinda card, for better or for worse.   I feel the Two of Wands is the fulcrum of this reading, because the position of her hands beckons to the practical Queen of Rings to let go, to experience freedom, while the hand nearest the haphazard Fool is grasping tightly.  I feel she is counseling balance, a blending of the two energies for the perfect mix that will allow the potential of the flower to burst into full bloom.

The shadow card for this reading is the Wheel of Fortune, more dancing!  It is a gentle reminder that while sometimes we just grasp the Wheel, hold on tight, and wind up wherever it takes us, more often we make our own luck, with our everyday choices, the things we tell ourselves, and preparing ourselves to ever become more fully the person we are meant to be.

If I view this reading through the lens of my Major for the week, the Devil, I realize that being a total slave to my obligations is another way of tying myself down, but that when I let go of all those things and just cut loose, still I am responsible for what may come of that.  It's a sobering, comforting, terrifying, thrilling thought, that I am the creatrix of my life, and my destiny, that I have the power to nurture and grow those things I desire, as well as the power to prune and pare away those that I do not, and when I have done it right, for at least one moment there is nothing but peace and joy and contentment where I am.  Then we start all over again, because this moment is all we really have, or are guaranteed.

These cards are from Twilight Realm: A Tarot of Faery by Beth Wilder and published by Schiffer Books.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Tea Leaf Tuesday - August 30, 2011

Advice from a friend- now taking applications!  I AM paying attention to my health, or trying to do better anyway.  My stomach insists and so do my heaving lungs after hauling myself up and down the hills of San Francisco all weekend.  Zumba is in the hizouse and back to daily yoga practice.  I'm looking, looking for that path with money on it.  I shan't give up, though!  Family matters, and the security of my family is ALWAYS tantamount to me, and so I will be especially careful with my pennies this week, watching them and not making any investments until I have all the information.  Even so, I trust that evverything will be just fine, ad the Angel wants me to know that, too.

One of the great things about these cards is that I have definitely had mixed bag readings with them, and that is okay with me because life is a mixed bag, but they always seem to end with great advice or sweet promises that come true, so they knock me over, then pick me up again and say, "I got your back."  That is a special quality to me in a friend, in a deck, in anyone, really, so I thank the universe for that tonight.

Guess what... One of my most frequent requests is to either sell my Tea Leaf Fortune Cards or help people find some.  Well, U.S. Games has acquired the rights and will be reprinting it.  I have no idea what it will look like, but for the bold of heart you can preorder it on Amazon.  Let me know how you like it!

These cards are from the Tea Leaf Fortune Cards by Rae Hepburn.

Daily Draw - Six of Wands, Page of Swords, Ten of Swords (Reversed)

I do not read reversals, because I look for the placement of the card, the relationship between the cards, and the elemental dignity, as well as my own intuition to tell me what part of the spectrum to read the card.  I shuffle in a way to specifically not have reversed cards, and this Ten of Swords did not in fact come out reversed.  I am sure of it, because I am getting familiar with the image this week, and I would have noticed an flipped it over.  But the fact is when I got up and left the reading for a bit, and then came back, the card was upside down.  Very curious, because I was the only one here at the time, and I seriously doubt the cats managed to flip it over so perfectly.  That to me is a pretty clear sign this card is wanting to be read reversed.


My oldest son tends to be the Page of Swords in my personal readings, and these cards show the precarious balance of the current path he is on.  He is smart, and quick, and witty, and he certainly can become the fire bird and rebirth himself into glory, as we see in the Six of Wands.  He could also fall into the despair and ruin of the Ten of Swords.  It is reversed because it is not a done deal, and even if he goes against everything everyone is hoping and planning and striving for, he can still pick himself up and try again.  It is never easy, but every moment is another chance to turn it all around, for him, for me, for you, for everyone.

I suspect something about him feels he has to keep going, keep pushing, as hard as he can, whetting the sword over and over, until he hits that plain of destruction.  If I did read reversals, though, I would read the Ten of Swords reversed as infinitely less impactful than its' upright counterpart.  He thinks he is destroying his world, whether that is what he truly wants or whether he just wants to show us all how badass he is, but really he is just mucking it up, and muck is like fake blood- it's messy, and it stains, but no permanent injuries are caused by it.

The shadow card, which I usually look at but do not always include in my posts, is the Tower.  There is a lot of fire and air, feeding each other, stoking each other, surrounding this kid right now, and if he does not make the changes the other cards point to, they are going to be made for him, with no choice of his own about how that looks.  That too will cleanse and refresh, like a good old fashioned thunderstorm, but it won't  be easy or painless.

(I apologize to my son, who would not be caught dead reading his mama's hoodoo blog, for airing some of his dirty laundry, but much like his actual laundry, I have to deal with it, too, and I think we all remember how smart we were at 16, how much we knew everything, how dumb our parents were, how sweet that stolen moonlight could feel on our sneaky faces, how profound we were, how untouchable.  I adore him, I love him to pieces, and I know who he is, who he was, and who I hope he will be.)

These cards are from Twilight Realm: A Tarot of Faery by Beth Wilder for Schiffer Books.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Daily Draw - Three of Wands, Nine of Wands, Ace of Cups

Home again, home again, jiggety jig.

The antlered figure in the Nine of Wands seems to be protectively watching over the girlish faery in the Three of Wands.  The Ace of Cups is a pure white lotus, a symbol of sacredness, and one I particularly enjoy, as I am told it grows out of the darkest, dankest mud to explode on top of the water in gorgeous color and unstoppable hope.

The Three of Wands is a card that to me looks like an aspect of myself that needs to be protected from harsh words and critical eyes, although in all honesty most of those come from me.  I do not get the feeling from the intense looking deer fae that she particularly cares who it is trying to harm her ward, just that she is there to prevent that.

Today these cards are a good reminder to care diligently for my gifts, for the things that are important to me, to pick my battles wisely but to stand and deliver once I have.  The lens of my Major Arcana for the week, the Devil, tells me to own my actions and make sure they are always serving my highest good, and to go ahead and exalt when I have reason.

These cards are from Twilight Realm: A Tarot of Faery by Beth Wilder for Schiffer Books.

Monday Majors- Theme for the Week: The Devil

When I look at this rendition of the Devil, it seems to have an optical illusion effect, much like those pictures where you are supposed to tell if it is an old lady with a hooked nose and pointy chin or a young lady sporting an elegant coif.  It is all about perspective.  So is the Devil.  When I first picked up the card I believed the young lady had her back arched and her face turned skyward as she exalted in the lightning storm, one hand raised in triumph, the other flung behind her head as she cries out.  Now it looks more like she is crouched between the rocks, shame keeping her from facing her own reflection and preferring that her hair hide her face from knowing, as if it were that easy to turn away from the things we have done.

There is no horned figure in this image, no chains and no coercion.  For good, as in my first impression, or for bad, the Devil is in the choices we each make every day.  The artist seems to be stressing the idea of personal responsibility and accountability, and not looking to a Devil that causes us to do things, but to look inside our own souls to figure out why we do the things we do.  I don't know about you, but sometimes I have the distinct impression that looking at my true self can be a scarier prospect than looking at any horrific Devil figure.

There is no judgment in this Devil card, because sometimes Devil energy is needed.  When you want to spice things up in the ol' bedroom, for example, or a healthy dose of hedonism is the only cure for what ails you.  In that case, you should throw yourself into whatever it is you are doing with all abandon, no regrets, but with eyes wide open.

But when we have willfully made mistakes, hurt others, said cruel things, drank too much, had one too many cupcakes, when we have done something we know to be wrong, then it is just as important to have our eyes wide open as we take a good look at ourselves and full accountability for our lives.  The Devil is not a card we get when we are being done wrong, but a card that denotes being the wrong doer.

I leave you with the words of Maya Angelou:

"It is very important for every human being to forgive herself or himself because if you live, you will make mistakes- it is inevitable. But once you do and you see the mistake, then you forgive yourself and say, 'Well, if I'd known better I'd have done better,' that's all. So you say to people who you think you may have injured, 'I'm sorry,' and then you say to yourself, 'I'm sorry.' If we all hold on to the mistake, we can't see our own glory in the mirror because we have the mistake between our faces and the mirror; we can't see what we're capable of being. You can ask forgiveness of others, but in the end the real forgiveness is in one's own self."

This card is from Twilight Realm: A Tarot of Faery by Beth Wilder for Schiffer Books.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Daily Draw - Four of Swords, Ten of Swords, Two of Rings

New week, new deck!  Today I will begin using the Twilight Realm: A Tarot of Faery by Beth Wilder, published by Schiffer Books.

The Four of Swords and the Two of Rings, which equates to Pentacles, seem to look on the battlefield of the Ten of Swords.  At least one person chose not to enter the battle, as we see in the Four of Swords his weapon waiting.  The elf in the Two of Rings presumably has some powers, and is waiting on the sidelines before exercising them.  Would the Ten of Swords outcome have been changed by either of them taking action?

Without a doubt, it is important to choose our battles carefully, but also without a doubt some of them have to be fought.  For me, these cards are addressing a situation in which I have left my sword at the wayside far too long, and it is time to bring it forth, for better or for worse.  The Two of Rings symbolizes to me a secret weapon I have, that while small, could be the turning point of the figurative battle.  Because of the mushrooms, which are kept in the dark and fed manure, I feel this is going to go on and on until I actually do something about it.

If I view this reading through the lens of my Majors card for the week,  The Star, I see that there is plenty of hope for the situation, but some action needs to be taken as well.

These cards are from Twilight Realm: A Tarot of Faery by Beth Wilder for Schiffer Books.

Sunday Showcase- Songs For The Journey Home

As I get ready to leave San Francisco BATS today I am featuring an aptly named deck, Songs For The Journey Home.  This one hails from down under, Australia, and as soon as I heard the name I had to have it.  I didn't care what the pictures looked like.  It turned out I got lucky, because the cards are just as lovely as the name.  I received this deck from a lovely fellow blogger and tarot enthusiast who decided to take matters into her own hands and rustle up an order when we could not find any locally, and I will be forever grateful because this deck is a shining jewel in my collection.

I love the round cards, which are not clones of Waite Smith images, which makes sense since nowhere on the box does the deck claim to be tarot, though the structure IS there.  The beautiful, soft, warm and gentle pictures really showcase the shining spirits of the deck creators, one of whom sadly passed away last year.  I am sure she was sang home gently, though, if these images are any indicator of the kind of life she led.

These cards come from Songs For The Journey Home lovingly created by Dwariko von Sommaruga and Catherine Cook.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Saturday Showcase- Tarot de Marseille ISIS Version

A whispered buzz in the tarot community had me all agog early on for this deck, and I will never regret its' purchase.  Bringing Tarot de Marseilles into modern times... I am down!

It is everything a Marseilles tradition deck should be - stately, rich, elegant.  Self published in Japan, it is a joy to shuffle and merely look through, too.

Lots of other tarot writers have become enamored of this deck as well:  See Le Fanu, who tends to be my ultimate enabler, and has written a rave review, Alex Satin whose engaging post first brought the deck to my attention, Mr. La-Luna whose collection makes me green with envy, and Bonnie Cehovet who added another dimension with her review.

These cards are the Tarot de Marseilles, ISIS Version, produced by Tadahiro Onuma.

Deck Review - Tarot of Durer

This has been a fairly contented week using the Tarot of Durer, which has been published by Lo Scarabeo.  The images are based on the art and engravings of German artist Albrecht Durer (May 21, 1471 – April 6, 1528).

Some of the images are quite bawdy, in a way I find endearing and hilarious, kind of like grandma at a burlesque show, not meant to be taken too seriously, so they are not for everyone.  A mischievous Fool card  shows us exactly what he thinks of a world that sometimes takes itself too seriously, and the Queen of Pentacles sticks her tongue out at us as a reminder that lewd is in the eye of the beholder, and while sometimes we want to reach for ecstatic new heights, sometimes we just need to get it on.  This deck has a bit of a sarcastic, dry sense of humor that does not take itself too seriously while still reaching for good readings.

The art style is saturated water colors, and the deck itself very much reminds me of the Alchemical Tarot by Robert Place, currently about to be printed in a Third Edition.  There are lots of symbols to use and read, and lots of freedom within the structure of the deck to read the way you choose to.  There are 78 cards, with the 22 Major Arcana labeled normally, Strength at 11, Justice at 8, with Latin phrases inscribed on each of the Majors.  The structure is loosely based on the Waite Smith deck, but there are some cards that go a whole new direction, and that is absolutely all right with me.  When I first began using the deck, I was bothered by the titles going vertical on the left side of the card, in multiple languages, but as the days passed it was less bothersome.  I feel this deck is a great candidate for trimming, and may get around to lopping those titles right off soon.  The colors are already gorgeous, and trimming the deck would only make them pop even more.

The deck itself is about 2.75" x 4.75" and packaged in a tuck box with the ubiquitous Little White Book, which does little to explain the thought process behind the choosing of the images, but does translate the Latin better than Google Translate, I found to my chagrin.  The card stock is lightly varnished and shuffles quite easily and smoothly.  The backs are ivory with a green reversible pattern from one of the cards.

I do not think everyone will enjoy this deck, as it is a bit snarky in readings, and  both the easy nudity in cards and the small amounts of blood could be disturbing to some.  The deck has a Renaissance flair to the art, and would work well for people who like their readings a little humorous and who like allegorical stories to tell.  I have found it to be a keeper in my collection, and I will reach for it when I find myself getting a little full of myself, because it seems to have a pretty good ego deflater built in.  The cards flow together easily and offer great readings, as I did several on Aeclectic Tarot this week, as well as using it at Denver Tarot Meetup for the readings I did there.

Two thumbs up for a historical looking deck (artfully speaking, not tarotfully speaking) that carries itself lightly through the world while maintaining a none too careful dignity as well!

These cards are from the Tarot of Durer published by Lo Scarabeo.

Daily Draw - Five of Cups, Ace of Swords, Knight of Wands

To me these cards look like the central one, the Ace of Swords, has slain the first card, the Five of Cups, and the Knight of Wands is turned away from the whole mess, in disgust.  Swords are about the thoughts we think and the way we communicate, so while the Ace of Swords is potentially a very positive card, but like all Aces it is mostly potential only, so the use of the raw energy is up to the wielder.  This makes me think of words used unkindly, of feelings hurt because sometimes we speak before we really think, or we place the vaulted notion of truth above the feelings and emotions of other people.  I don't know how many times I have heard variations of the sentiment- "If the truth hurts people, it's not my fault."  Well, actually, if you said something that didn't really need to be said, yes it is.

We should always speak in truth, when we have to speak at all, but not every thought that crosses our minds has to be shared.  These cards are a reminder to me that if it is not edifying, if it can't help but it can hurt, then it does not need to be said.

The kits in the Ace of Swords, looking to their mama, also remind me that children learn what they live, and that I have to walk the walk and talk the talk I expect them to, because words without action are useless.  The Knight of Wands knows this, and that is why he doesn't even acknowledge what is going on in the other cards.  He is saving his energy for endeavors worthy of his time.  He is probably also advice for me, when I confront the Gossip card from my Tea Leaf Fortune card reading this week.

These cards are from the Tarot of Durer published by Lo Scarabeo.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Daily Draw - Knight of Cups, Judgment, Four of Swords

Good morning from much-cooler-than-Colorado northern California!

Today these cards show how I procrastinate at times, running away from what I should be doing, like the naughty Knight of Cups, and how sometimes I need a pretty big wake up call, like we see in Judgment, and how that often leaves me having painted myself into a corner, or trapped and gnawing at my own paw like the fox in the Four of Swords.  These cards are so over the top, with the fleeing Knight, the angel of Judgment with his puffed up cheeks and eyes squeezed tight as he blows that horn as hard as he can so there can be no doubt it's time to get up, and the sad little fox, so clever but still caught.

A good example of this is the trip to San Francisco.  I have known for at least six months when it would be, where it would be, that I was going, and what I needed to pack.  Did I deal with any of that?  No, I did not.  I was frantically packing the morning of, and The Man was frustrated with me, as he should have been.  I was also frantic about leaving kids and pets, when a little more advance planning would have set my mind at ease, so I ended up with a big mess of my own making.  I set my own trap and put my paw right in it.

Judgment is one of those cards that I often dread seeing for other people when I read for them, as it really doesn't say much of anything to me for most other people, but in my personal readings it is almost always a call to reminder of paying attention to my spiritual health and practices.  Perfectionism and procrastination are two sides of the same coin, and one way the monkey mind occupies itself when I give it time to.  Judgment is usually a not so gentle prodding to me to get my spiritual affairs back in order, to pay attention to what I am telling myself, and to meditation if I have let it slide, which I almost always have when this card appears.

These cards are from the Tarot of Durer published by Lo Scarabeo.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Daily Draw - King of Cups, Four of Wands, The Hanged Man

These cards are probably a little bit describing what The Man goes through to be with me sometimes.  I am loving and sweet to him, and he sure is the center of my world, but I am well aware I can be a trial at times.

I very much want to go on our trip today, but my anxiety absolutely flares around traveling.  I have overwhelming emotions, which we can see in the King of Cups rising waters.  I am worried about my Little Big Man whose care plans had to change last minute and the dog who hates being separated from us and we can't find one of the cats who was naughty and slipped outside and I hate flying and I am nervous to meet new people and I have not even packed yet and my hair is a mess and I feel guilty spending family resources on something that is essentially just for me and really I could go on and on...  He really can't do anything right for me just now, either.  The Four of Wands shows him lecturing me about going to the doctor for my stomach issues, where I am half scared for what they could tell me and half pretty sure I wouldn't do anything they advised anyway because I do not like the way western medicine  treats symptoms and not systems.  The card also shows me not listening, which is probably frustrating him.  The Hanged Man shows the impasse we are at, how he just has to suffer through this and so do I.  The Latin on the Hanged Man reads, "Many plots against a good man."  Poor honey!

The obvious answer is for me to just calm down, suck it up, trust that everything is going to work out the way it is supposed to, and stop torturing him and myself with my anxieties.  If only life were that simple...

If I manage to do all that, I will be in San Francisco for the next four days, attending the Bay Area Tarot Symposium.  All the weekend posts have been written and scheduled, but are not in real time.  They are (I hope, and you'll understand once you see this sorry set of cards), a discussion around cards rather than a true daily draw.  I'll check in when I can  and everyone enjoy your weekends, whether you make it to BATS or hang out at home or something in between!

Update:  As I remember from this week's Tea Leaf Fortune Reading there was a Misunderstanding, Great Passion, and Someone Behaving Stupidly.  I may not have to wait all week to see who that someone might be.  I looked in the mirror, and the only turkey I saw was me.  *gobble gobble*

These cards are from the Tarot of Durer published by Lo Scarabeo.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Chariot Reversed, Or You're Not Going Anywhere, Punk!

I'm leaving on a jet plane.  Don't know when I'll be back again... 

Actually, I do.  Monday.

But last night I had a reading at Denver Tarot Meetup that suggested my trip might not go as smoothly as I would like it to.  The Chariot decided to be reversed in the physical aspects part of the spread, and while my reader was a newbie to tarot, I totally believe the reading is valid regardless of the experience level of the reader.  My question was if she could tell me what I might need to know about the upcoming trip to San Francisco.  She could, in fact, and the first card that showed itself was the Chariot... reversed (cue level down music).

Since I believe I make my fate, and not the cards, I asked my Wisdom of the Hidden Realms oracle to show me where the problem might lay.

The Dragon's Duel card definitely resonates with my inner conflict.  I am not an easy traveler, being excessively home bodied.  I also feel guilty about using our resources for a trip that is really mostly just for me.  The Man will go, happily, as he is a traveling Sadge, but I feeeeeel bad.  I am just not sure that what I want is what is right for my family in this precise moment, and I have women's disease so I think it all comes down to me; I am responsible for everyone, everyone's happiness depends on how I perform in all my sundry roles, I need to perfect.  I'll bet some of you have it, too.  (But you shouldn't.  You are fabulous!)

Then I asked what was my best advice to combat that feeling- The Chess Queen.  This is an advice card, so I can read it positively.  I need to trust that I have made the right decision, trust that my kidtauplets and pets are gonna be just fine, trust that we are going to have a good time and be blessed with this mini vacation.

I also need to make a plan, for packing and all the other logistics, because there is comfort in having a plan.  Plans should be flexible, but in general are pretty darn good to have.

And if I successfully enact the advice of the Chess Queen, what will my outcome be?  The Ice Queen.  This was another troublesome card, because it feels like non-movement as well, just like that dastardly Chariot reversed, and I need movement.  I need to move like 1500 miles tomorrow!  I did not like that card at all, and so I drew another- (this is standard operating procedure, right?)

The Arrow Master, and then I got it!  I am going to get what I want, this trip, this time away with The Man and this tarot learning greatness, but I need to detach myself from expected outcomes.  I want everything to be perfect, and flow perfectly, and we are hosting a dear friend as a roommate while we are out there, and so I feel responsible for her happiness in this trip as well, and I need not to.  I need to make myself like the Ice Queen, the Queen of Swords, who cares and loves and does her best, but does not beat herself up over the little ways things can go sideways.

So, trust- check!
Plan- check!
Detachment- sorta check!
Going on a much anticipated trip to a beautiful place- definitely check!

These cards are Wisdom of the Hidden Realms by Colette Baron-Reid for Hay House.

Daily Draw - King of Pentacles, Two of Wands, The Lovers

The King of Pentacles is The Man, as ever in my readings.  He takes care of things on a very practical level, and while he is the best hearted person I have ever known and an absolute charmer and prince on every level, he tends to be quite pragmatic and realistic, which is a good foil to my flighty artistry.  The Two of Wands is about reaching for greatness.  In this case, one of the great cats is literally trying to stretch out and reach the prickly porcupine.  My tender sensibilities want to think he just wants to love it and play with it a bit, while his partner looks on.  The scene on the Lovers portrays something impossible to work out, a satyr and a human woman, but the Latin inscription reads, "Nothing is difficult for those who love."

Today these cards make me remember to consciously give thanks for all the good things in my life, The Man who I adore, who adores me and makes sure I know it, being chief among them.  The hard things aren't so hard with him, and every day life has taken on a dreamlike quality where I can't wait to get from one moment to the next, just enjoying each step by his side.  I am grown up more, or this is right, or some combination of the two, because I don't need perfect, I just need him and my family.  And I know no one who isn't in a happy relationship wants to read about mine, so I feel almost guilty about having found this beautiful joy.  Life is by no means perfect; there is never enough time in the day and stretching the dollars is a constant struggle.  We both have contentious custody situations, and exes who wish us no good, as well as two teenagers, two middle schoolers, and a baby girl who is 9 going on 19.  All of that adds up to a lot of stress, but somehow it's not crushing when there are two to bear the burdens.

These cards are also such a contrast to my weepy, sad cards of yesterday.  I said I didn't know where they applied to my life, but as I look at my happy, triumphant cards this morning, I feel they may have been referring to a dark time in my life, about four years ago, when my kids' dad and I were splitting up.  That was so hard for me, because I loved my family, and I wanted it more than anything, and I did not let go of the relationship gracefully, though I dearly wish I had, because today I can see where I had to be broken down and rebuilt in order to be more fully who I really am.  Also, because The Ex and the mistress will always hold in their minds the idea that I want to be with him, and I truly don't.  I loved him, at a time and to a point, but it was never the all encompassing, unconditional love I have now, and if I thought it would do any good I would write both of them a thank you letter, because where I am is exactly where I want to be.  What I loved most of all, more than The Ex and what I really cared about was the family, the children and my place in it and my former in laws and our life together.  There is also the point that The Ex deserves to be loved the way I love The Man, and while we could have probably "made it work", life is so short and you only get this one shot at it, so we both deserve to live more fully than just getting by together.  But my sadness over the loss of my family, or what I perceived as the loss, I allowed that to cripple me for many months, and it went beyond simple grieving and into the danger zone of believing that was life was, pain and misery.

Love just happens to us, at first, but then it becomes a conscious choice, to stay in love and fan the flames of desire and to keep walking down the path together.

These cards are from the Tarot of Durer published by Lo Scarabeo.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Tea Leaf Tuesday - August 23, 2011

I would be willing to bet that most misunderstandings rise out of great passion and people behaving stupidly.  I wish the gossip card could surprise me, but it doesn't.  I am well aware that there are people in my life, mostly remnants and hangers on, that do not wish me well, and that's okay.  They talk about me because nothing else in their lives is as interesting.  My little sister posted this on her facebook page the other day and I echo the sentiment- "I love all haters, fakers, pretenders, and backstabbers. I thank y'all for making me strong."  I am responsible for me, and the way I walk in the world, and everyone else is responsible for them.  At the end of my time here, when I make my accounting to the powers that be, I will not be trying to explain why they feel the need to be mean.  I'll be explaining how I reacted.

We are going to San Francisco on Thursday, so I am sure there will be some happy, light hearted fun mixed in, and I am sure we will make it on a boat at some time.  If there is a lottery or casino kind of thing there I will be sure to throw some money down on that lucky card.  I'm excited for the Chain.  I am ready for things to be happening!

Update: August 30, 2011- The misunderstanding happened here, wherein my gentle and soft spoken husband became quite irate with me for continually putting off needed doctor's appointments,  and I would be willing to go so far as to say that the great passion and someone behaving stupidly was there, as well.  I am not naming names, though... I am still not all that concerned about the gossip, because when you live your life with integrity you just don't have to worry about those kind of things, and as I said I am sure it happens all the time anyway, because I was not always good about surrounding myself with people who lived their life that way.

We had a beautiful time in San Francisco, with lots of carefree time as a couple and with friends, and I loved every single moment of it.  I can't wait to go back, and it is definitely on my list of livable cities, should we ever need a change of landscape.  I also believe that the act of attending San Francisco Bay Area Tarot Symposium has set into motion that chain of events that will affect my life, in no small part because I learned sooooo much and had such a fire lit under my behind to get in gear with my business pursuits.  It became very clear to me that while learning is lifelong, I am beyond ready to spread my wings in both areas I am passionate about- tarot and writing.  Now I just need to attend to the details.

The winning or windfall is The Man's to expound upon, as he has a lucky nature and works hard, which always ends up a winning combination.  He won a gorgeous Steele Wizard Tarot from the raffle at BATS, which is his first deck, as well as probably a HUUUUUUGE prize at work, which was performance based AND he won even missing two days at work to accompany me.  I'll let you in on the details after we know them, if you don't hear me screeching in delight wherever you are.

Another win for fortune telling with the Tea Leaf Fortune Cards!

These cards are the Tea Leaf Fortune Cards by Rae Hepburn.

Daily Draw - Five of Cups, The Moon, Eight of Cups

What a moody set of cards I have drawn today!  They just want to lay about and moan about how not fair it all is.

The birds in the flanking Cups cards want to cry, and they very well may have good reasons for doing so.  The lady perched in the curve of the crescent Moon looks as if she is grieving something as well, and the dog howls along with her in her grief, but the Mad Hatter figure, he just keeps on keeping on, because really, that is all we can do.  Grief is a valid part of life, and we need to feel what we feel, but we need to also get up and get on with our lives.  We can't and shouldn't kill the grieving, sad parts of ourselves, but we shouldn't let them take over our lives, either.

Playing a twitter game a few weeks, ago I posted the Dr. Suess quote, "Don't cry because it's over.  Smile because it happened." as a possible meaning for the Five of Cups.  Because the internet removes all need, and some people's desire, to actually be polite some random person decided to blast me for being trite and not acknowledging the need to grieve for what we have lost.  (It's hard to not be trite in 140 characters or less, but I digress...)  Au contrair, I think grief is a very important part of life, but I also think that myself, and many other people, use grief as an excuse to not do the things we need to do.  We get lost in the delusional light of the Moon and begin to believe that is the only way to feel.

I am not particularly grieving anything, not yet, but I am well aware I may be on the cusp of a great loss, but I want to remember that I can cry when I need to, and then I need to let it go and keep on moving, and that when next my tears well up behind my lashes and I need a moment to sob and harangue and beg and scream at the universe, I can.  But the spaces in between count, as well.

These cards come from the Tarot of Durer published by Lo Scarabeo.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Daily Draw - Ten of Wands, King Of Pentacles, Ten of Cups

These cards today are illustrating my sickness.  While I battle with my wayward stomach, my house is burning around me, little fires that add up, like laundry and dishes sitting on the counter while I do not feel good enough to drag myself around to get to it, and the burden weighs heavily on me, as we can see in the Ten of Wands.  The King of Pentacles tends to be The Man in my readings, and look, he is sweeping in to pick up the pieces for me and to ensure our home remains happy and peaceful while I recover, which keeps us all Ten of Cups feeling, lovey dovey.  He deserves some major props, because this weekend he got our basement cleared out, with the help of two of the kidtauplets, and shampooed all our carpets.  Let me tell you, I thought there was nothing sexier than a man with a vacuum before, but now I know there is- a man with a steam carpet cleaner!  My house smells fresh and clean and the floors look great!  Thank you, sugar!

These cards are form the Tarot of Durer published by Lo Scarabeo.

Monday Majors- Theme for the Week: The Star

My theme for the week, according to the Major Arcana is The Star, a beautiful card that symbolizes eternal hope and healing close at hand.  When we wonder if the light at the end of the tunnel is the end, or another oncoming train, The Star is what we are hoping to see.

The Star can be a mixed bag kind of card, though, as much as we'd like to don the rose colored glasses and say it ain't so.  There is hope and healing there, for sure, but it may not be quite as quickly coming as we want, especially when we are in pain.  Stars are distant and far away, not immediate and fervent like The Sun.  The Latin on this particular card translates to, "All things clean to the clean" which insinuates, to me at least, that perhaps the seeming help and hope she offers is not quite as free as we would like to believe.  There is some work to be done by us.

There is also the element of wishing on a star, and the way that thinking could leave us disempowered, as if we are not in fact in control of our destiny.  And, although we are coming out of the night time circuit of cards that the Wheel of Fortune may have spit us out into, we are not out of the woods yet.  The Star is one card before the madness of The Moon, and her fractured light is shining on the ruins of The Tower.  She is literally between a rock and a hard place, and while that is the eye of the storm and we can be grateful for her respite, we still have miles to go in a dark place to get to The Sun, and our demons to face.  She does not promise to see us safely, just gives us hope for the possibility.

Update: August 29, 2011- The Star manifested herself in my life this week in much way the way I had anticipated.  There has been lots of promise for hope and healing, but it is far off and not free for the taking.  No wishing on a Star is going to get me and mine where we want to be, but that is just fine with me.  "The longer I live the more I believe you do have to give if you wanna receive..." ~John Michael Montgomery, Life's A Dance.

The Star has graced my Daily Draws for the week with her gentle presence and sweet, light pressure to keep on going, to never give up faith, to never feel alone, and for that I am grateful.

This card is from the Tarot of Durer by Lo Scarabeo.