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Partially finished werewolf slippers...



I'm working on a small, comfortable werewolf costume... what amounts to a 'half-suit.' However, while I have some uncolored gloves made, the first parts I made were the feet, because my feet are always cold in the winter. They still need work, but I like them so far. They're super flexible and I can even hold a pencil between the foam toes. O.o

Christmas Raptors

Everyone needs to see a toy or two for Christmas. :3

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Did you ever hear the story of the Christmas tree,
Who just didn’t want to change the show?
He liked living in the woods and playing with squirrels;
He liked icicles and snow.

He liked wolves and eagles and grizzly bears
And critters and creatures that crawled.
Why bugs were some of his very best friends,
Spiders and ants and all.

Now that’s not to say that he ever looked down
On a vision of twinkled lights
Or on mirrored bubbles and peppermint canes
And a thousand other delights.

And he often had dreams of tiny reindeer
And a jolly old man in a sleigh
Full of toys and presents and wonderful things
And a story of Christmas day

Oh, Alfie believed in Christmas alright!
He was full of Christmas cheer
All of each and every day
And all throughout the year.

To him it was more than a special time
Much more than a special day
It was more than a special story, it was more than a beautiful story
It was a special kind of way.

You see some folks have never heard a jingle bell ring
And they’ve never heard of Santa Claus.
They’ve never heard the story of the son of god
That made Alfie pause.

Did that mean that they’d never know of peace on earth
Or the brotherhood of man?
Or know how to love, or know how to give?
If they can’t no one can.

You see, life is a very special kind of thing
Not just for a chosen few,
But for each and every living, breathing thing
--Not just me and you

So when you’re saying your Christmas prayers this year
Alfie asked me if I’d ask you:
Say a prayer for the wind and the water and the wood
And those who live there too.

Photo taken by myself, words by John Denver.  A Christmas poem I've known since I was little.

Black Panthers and Red Skies...

So… according to the news, a black panther has been spotted in my area by a couple of folks.  There’s even pugmarks the size of a man’s palm and scat to back it up, though there’s no photographic evidence of the cat itself.  I have to admit, I find the timing of this to be… opportune.  I mean… what goes with Halloween better than Black Cats?  Either way, the Sheriff is taking this seriously, so I will as well…
 
In addition… the Aurora appeared here tonight.  Just a dim, red glow…
 
Add that to how noisy the coyotes have been lately…
 
And how the fog is regularly rolling in from the swamp…
 
And the thunderstorms…

This is shaping up to be an interesting October.

Wolf Star Musings

My favorite star is Sirius. 
 
Commonly called the Dog Star, it has also represented wolves in cultures ranging from the Native Americans to the Chinese of antiquity. I suppose my reasons for liking it are rather obvious.
 
It takes a little over eight and a half years for its light to reach earth, which means, when I look up in the night sky… I’m seeing several years in the past, and even further, depending on which star I’m looking at. When I’m looking up, I might be seeing light that was created during great events in history… like the building of the pyramids, or the invention of powered flight, or the birth of someone whose name has been lost to antiquity, but did some great deed that I’ll never of know due to the burning of the library of Alexandria.  It’s like time travel.

I’ve always wanted to visit space, and go see the stars, but I suppose I will have to settle for letting the stars come visit me.  There’s something special about standing outside and looking up at the night sky… because every time I do, countless stars reach out to touch me.  Photons, energy waves, some of which are so old I can hardly fathom the time they’ve been traveling, arrive here, where I encounter them.  Once the sun goes down, the world is bathed in a shower of antiquity.  And yet, Sirius is so close to Earth, so intimate… At the time the photons of Sirius that are now reaching earth were made… I was eighteen.  Just barely an adult, and not even allowed to drink yet. 
 
Stars are amazing.  And every night, there’s a little piece of heaven reserved just for me, a little bit of energy that only I will sense.

That is, should I care to look up.

Pottermore!

So, I kind of needed a distraction. I'm worried about friends, work's been rough,  been working on the mess of storm damage we have, lots of crazy things. So what arrived when I really needed it? My Hogwarts letter!


Magical Spoilers!
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A Little Crazy: I got into Pottermore~


ALC: Pottermore by *nashoba-hostina on deviantART

The next panel would be me collapsing into bed with my plush phoenix.

I grew up with Harry Potter. I lived in a rather conservative area that was very “Harry Potter is evil” at times. It just broke my heart… I adored the books because I could find bits of mythology I’d already learned… and it prompted me to look up new bits of folklore. (Katie Bell? Kate the Bell Witch of Tennessee? Oh yeah XD) It brought the things I learned about in my free time into a new and wonderful context.

However, up until recently, I missed out on a lot. I missed midnight book parties and movie openings, because I had work, or school the next day. But the coordinates, the clues, the countdown... all so good. On the 31st, I stayed up until three in the morning, waiting for a clue. But I had work, and had to go to bed. Same problem the next night. I can’t sacrifice real life for fantasy. But it all paid off on the third night.

SO EXCITED GUYS. I know my owl will arrive later than the folks who got in the first two days... but I'm still in!

Field Notes: Cinquefoil

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Today, used as an ornamental plant, in old European folklore, cincuefoil, particularly the variety known as the Common Tormentil, was used for poorly healing wounds, and it also contains a red coloring that was used to dye leather… However, the use of this plant that is of interest to me, is that it was used in the creation of lycanthropic salve. Due to the various toxic and hallucinogenic plants in these salves, this may have been added to the salve to help in the healing of injuries obtained while ‘wolfed out’ or, the reddish dye, used in combination with another salve ingredient, soot, was used to alter the color of the werewolf-to-be.

Finally Livejournal is working for me. It's been giving me hassles for about a week O.o

Field Notes: Bittersweet Nightshade

This plant, while beautiful, is toxic. I cannot stress how dangerous toxic plants can be, especially since the effects of the toxins are not instant. The berries and root in particular should be avoided.

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However, that does not mean it hasn't had its uses. This plant, according to southern folk medicine, has a variety of uses, most notably as an antibiotic and anti-inflammatory. Folk medicine also says that it can be used as a tea for coughs, and the leaves and rootbark were made into a salve and used for the topical treatment of bruises, wounds and sores. While a poultice seems less scary than ingestion, the fact is, using this plant these days would be reckless and unnecessary. With all of our modern, much safer medicine, this is merely a curiosity, and it is best to steer clear of this plant.

Field Notes: Pennycress

I am, as usual, shocked by how fast the year is going. There’s always so much to do, be it a weekly comic update, or getting my hands dirty in the garden. Of course, while I love my garden, there are always plenty of wild plants to keep an eye on. One of these is simple pennycress:

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This plant may not seem like much, but I happen to think it’s really very lovely to look at, and it happens to be edible. However, being a form of wild mustard, it’s a bit, well, bitter, so boiling it in a couple changes of water is recommended. The leaves and seed pods can be eaten in things like sandwiches, or in loaded baked potatoes. But, as with all wild plants, when in doubt, leave it out.