review

Worth the Witch

October, 2017

Review of Spiritual Wake’s Mystery Witch Box

 

 

(logo for Spiritual Wake)

 

 

Spiritual Wake is an Etsy shop that offers a Mystery Witch Box for $15.00 plus Etsy calculates exact shipping to your zip code. This box is not a reoccurring, monthly subscription, but rather a one time purchase. You pay a one time fee for 1 box. Each Mystery Witch Box contains different items, such as, spells, books, jewelry, herbs, and more. You will receive 4 or more items depending on the value of each item in every box.  Each box is unique and different. 

 

PaganPagesOrg has received a Mystery Witch Box to review this month.

 

How it Arrives…

 

(Package the Mystery Witch Box arrived in.)

 

The box is a plain, nondescript brown box.  You get complete anonymity in the mail from the simple box. There are no pagan markings or symbols on the box. This is great for those who need the obscurity.

 

As Soon as you Open the Box…

 

(Box when first opened.)

 

A wonderful smell almost assaults you. You could not smell this wonderful aroma when the box was closed. It’s like, a surprise for your nose!  All you see is a folded piece of paper with glittering strands behind it.

 

What you See First…

 

(Glitter, contents, & instructions.)

 

As soon as you open the box you find the instructions on the top and they explain everything you will find in the box. Every item is listed, with directions on how to use them. They, also give ingredients to the bathbombs, which is helpful for those with allergies.

 

Right below the instructions, as you can see in the picture, the box is filled with strands of glitter. With this Mystery Witch Box, searching through the glitter for the hidden items is part of the fun!! Rummaging around with your hands trying to find what surprise is next. So what did we pull out first?

 

Red Candle…

 

(Red Candle)

 

The Red Candle is a wonderfully, full, thick votive. It is vibrant, deep red. The smell that comes from it is wonderful. Making the whole package aromatic. It is not a small cheap candle. It feels solid, dense.

 

Mala Bracelet…

 

(Mala Bracelet)

The Mala Bracelet is very cute. Made from plastic beads on elastic cord and stretches to fit all sizes.

 

Spell Bottle & Carnelian Stone…

 

(Spell Bottle & Carnelian Stone)

 

The spell bottle is an adorable size and the carnelian stone is very pretty. The directions included are very clear on what you can do with the spell kit. It says, specifically, what this spell kit is for. The instructions give you a few suggestions on spells you can do with the kit or leaves it open for workings of your own on the topic the kit was created & charged for.

 

The Rough Apatite & Labradorite…

 

(Rough Apatite & Labradorite)

 

The Rough Apatite & Labradorite are each a very good size. I would call them both “Chunks”. They are nice as altar decorations or home decorations. Good additions to anyone’s stone collections. I think the instructions, or maybe another sheet, should have given the meanings for them.

 

Bathbombs…

 

(Bathbombs)

 

These are a free gift. Who doesn’t like free gifts. Bathbombs are a nice, relaxing treat and they were unexpected. They came in cute shapes, especially love the stars, and cool colors.

 

(Bathbomb packaging)

 
However, I did feel the appearance of the bathbombs packaging may have taken away from the overall appearance of the box. Maybe placing them in an organza bag or similar would represent them better. I do understand that this would, however, add cost to the amount of the box.

 

(Full contents)

Since most of this box was not handmade, I scrutinized the cost of every item inside and added up what I thought was fair for the labor for the items that were handmade. After all my calculations, I feel this box is worth the price it is listed for. She did under-price herself on shipping on this one box and I hope that is an error.

 
The contents have a very nice overall appearance. My one issue was the packaging of the free gift, but that was insignificant. The glitter is cute and makes it like a party in a box.

 

The price is not expensive.  We would get another to see what goodies we would get next time!!  This box is Worth the Witch and PaganPagesOrg can stand behind this company.

 

So who is behind Spiritual Wake? and, where does she get her ideas?

 
Her name is Veronika Frederick and she spent a little time with us at PaganPagesOrg…

 

PaganPagesOrg: Tell us a little about yourself.
Veronika Frederick: I am Veronika Frederick an Egyptian based Pagan obsessed with cats. I began my journey as a kid inspired from things like Charmed and Practical Magic. I eventually fled an abusive relationship and began my shop as a way to regain control in my life and to help others. I sell a variety of jewelry, self care, and Pagan items. I live happily in Michigan and love the lake. I really hope that my shop can inspire courage, and good vibes. 
PPO: Where are you from?
VF: I was born in Utah and lived there through elementary school, then spent my teens in Illinois and majority of my twenties have been here in Michigan. I am in love with Lake Huron.
PPO: What type of Witch are you, yourself?
VF: That’s tough, Eclectic Kemetic is likely the closest term. I personally believe and incorporate Ancient Egyptian Deities. However I do not mimic their way of religion. I’m very earth based. Overall though I tend to think I am just a crazy cat lady witch.
PPO: What are some of your interests?
VF: Anyone who knows me would all say my thing is CATS. I’m an intense cat mom, protective, and loving. My familiar is one of my cats her name is Ingrid and she works closely with me for anything that is shop related. She is the happiest, purr machine out there. I show her as one of my helpers on my etsy page, have her in photo shoots. (So I would recommend anyone really allergic to cats avoid my shop.) I’m eternally grateful that I ended up with Ingrid.
PPO: What do you feel the Pagan community is missing?
VF: Animal rights. Might sound a little odd, but there have been so many abusive and terrible things done to animals it makes my stomach churn. So I try to really show how to be a strong pet parent. Whenever I have spare $ I donate food to the animal shelters, and I sign petitions. I feel very strongly that animals need to be protected from the cruelty of people, and deeply wish more people, not just Pagans, would sort of pick up that fight also. I have also rescued a lot of cats and dogs, since I was kid up until now. Ingrid is a rescue.
PPO: What brought the idea of a Mystery Box to you?
VF: I wish I could say something original, but actually I had ordered a witch box from another shop found myself disappointed and just ended up deciding I would do something better. I actually didn’t introduce this item until late spring if I remember right.
PPO: How did you begin?
VF: Well the boxes began with using old witch bottle jewelry I had made for a fair, then adding in some crystals, from there it’s … left a mystery. The shop though did begin as a way to regain control in my life, and to feel stronger. Something I try to incorporate in all aspects of my shop is self-empowerment and courage. My journey to Paganism started as a kid, but the shop was born from struggle. I left an abusive relationship, and it was messy, long process. I felt like any moment the entire world could crumble in, so I did what I have done all my life I turned to something creative that kept my hands busy.
PPO: How do you chose what to include?
VF: I work off of inventory, creativeness, and what supplies I have stored up. This ranges from homemade spells, sigils I make, to jewelry, and crystals. Each box has several items, usually whatever I feel inspired towards for that order. Depending on value the number of items can vary, anywhere from 4 or more items.

PPO: What other types of things do you sell in Spiritual Wake?
VF: I sell bracelets, necklaces, earrings, small pdf books, mystery witch box, and bath bombs/shower melts (I actually have been meaning to add more to the shop just haven’t had the time yet).
I’d like to thank Veronika Frederick for taking time from her busy schedule to talk with us at PaganPagesOrg.

 

To learn more about Spiritual Wake Etsy Shop or Mystery Witch Box’s visit them at:
Etsy Shop:  https://www.etsy.com/shop/SpiritualWake
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/spiritualwakeofficial
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SpiritualWake

 

***

 

About the Author:

 

 

Jennifer Sacasa-Wright is an Eclectic Witch who runs PaganPagesOrg eMagazine.  She loves hearing your opinions & thoughts on the eMagazine and welcomes comments. When she is not working on PaganPagesOrg she is creating in some other way.

Upcoming Movie Preview & Review: “THE ATONING”

September, 2017

“THE ATONING”

 

 

THE HAUNTING HORROR/SUSPENSE/THRILLER

FROM GRAVITAS VENTURES

TO BE RELEASED SEPTEMBER 5, 2017

ON DVD, BLU-RAY, AND DIGITAL HD

***

Movie Review:

I had the privilege of per-screening The Atoning, a creative horror by writer/director Michael Williams.

I watch a lot of horrors, having worked a few haunts , myself, and relish nothing more than the sounds of horrified screams in the night. I’m also a Witch, and Intuitive Medium, and I would like to offer viewpoints based on my experiences.


I watch a lot of horrors. While this is not my favorite one I’ve seen, it’s also not the worst by any means.


It delivers in regards to the beautiful screams I love to hear. It will also make you jump more than once, yourself. One thing I love about horror is how it embraces the macabre and lends it an unapologetic beauty. From the set, to the makeup for the demons, to the crisp sounds in the heirloom house, to the use of shadow to create foreboding, this delivers artistic beauty. 

And those screams! Those lovely, lovely screams!


The things most noteworthy about this is the unusual approach the team took with concepts of trapped spirits, psychics, and views of Purgatory.


I will explain without spoiling the film, because you really should watch it.


Trapped Spirits

We have all seen multiple films where ghosts are trapped, and are tortured while trying to move on. This one has a unique reason, however. The reason, and closure for the spirits comes near the end, with the details slowly disclosed like pieces of the jigsaw puzzles the family work on together.


Psychics

I love it most of all when films accurately portray my kind. This one, admittedly didn’t. It was the stereotypical evil witch who scared the hell out of everybody, and orchestrated a violent showdown. While I’m more concerned that people watching TV or films will assume a work of fiction is a perfect mirror of reality, I do find the crazy psychic who fits the Biblical stereotype of the summoner of evil a tired, overdone concept that needs retired. I’ve both done, and witnessed house clearings. I’ve talked to dead people. I’ve helped with an exorcism.  The process of all these things is nothing like what was portrayed in the film. I don’t criticize artists for taking creative liberties to well…CREATE- I just want the viewers to remember, this is fiction!


The concept of a human being who has the power to command spirits is both an old one, as well as a scary one. This medium delivers on scary- if you aren’t a medium. Then, you might be rolling your eyes.


Purgatory

The concept of Purgatory has been explored by writers for centuries.  When artists get creative and come up with new ideas about how it works, people assume it is doctrine. It isn’t. Without spoiling the film, I will just say Purgatory is for those who are going to Heaven, but they just have to atone for some sins first. People going to Hell do not make it to Purgatory, as they are seen as a lost cause with no hope for redemption.  Purgatory is for purging and purification, and those with no sins to purge don’t need to go there. The film portrays some souls that committed no wrong stuck in Purgatory, and another that is hellbound as being in Purgatory.  As art, it is interesting. Just don’t confuse art with dogma.


This all raises a greater question. What limits for a writer or filmmaker are there in bending what is accepted as truth for the sake of artistic vision? As far as I am concerned, there are no limits, and it’s not a fictional writer’s job to educate everybody.


It is our job to educate ourselves, and it is a writer’s job in a fictional horror piece to entertain and scare us.


I consider this more of a psychological thriller, myself, because until all the pieces come together, the film keeps you guessing. That is the scary part. We can sympathize with the family, questioning “What would it be like if I were them in this situation? ”

For the little boy, early on, he says, “Does this mean I don’t have to go to school?”


For the dad, he muses, “What if this is God’s way of giving us a second chance?”


For the mom, it is the fear that,  “ God doesn’t exist…”


I’ve said enough.


Now go watch the film.


It’s full of surprises, it keeps you guessing right to the end, and the ending is quite satisfying if I do say so, myself.

***

 

Plot:

Vera, Ray, and Sam, a seemingly normal family, are haunted by more than mere ghosts. The lingering horror of their past threatens their ability to function as a loving family until they become enlightened by a mystical encounter. From that moment on, they’re thrust into a horror worse than anything they’ve ever experienced. Personal demons manifest and tear the family apart from the inside out as they come to terms with their past.

 

 

Movie Specs:

Genres: Horror, Thriller, Mystery, Drama

Runtime: 89 Minutes

Language: English

 

 

Sneak Peek:

 

 

 

***

***

Official Movie Sites:

Official Site:

www.theatoningmovie.com  

Facebook:

www.facebook.com/theatoning  

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/theatoningmovie/  

@theatoningmovie

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/theatoningmovie

@theatoningmovie   

 

 

***

 

About the Author:

 

 

 

 

Saoirse is a recovered Catholic.  I was called to the Old Ways at age 11, but I thought I was just fascinated with folklore. At age 19, I was called again, but I thought I was just a history buff, and could not explain the soul yearnings I got when I saw images of the Standing Stones in the Motherland. At age 29, I crossed over into New Age studies, and finally Wicca a couple years later. My name is Saoirse, pronounced like (Sare) and (Shah) Gaelic for freedom. The gods I serve are Odin and Nerthus. I speak with Freyja , Norder, and Thunor as well. The Bawon has been with me since I was a small child, and Rangda has been with me since the days I was still Catholic. I received my 0 and 1 Degree in an Eclectic Wiccan tradition, and my Elder is Lord Shadow. We practice in Columbus, Ohio. I am currently focusing more on my personal growth, and working towards a Second and Third Degree with Shadow. I received a writing degree from Otterbein University back in 2000. I have written arts columns for the s Council in Westerville. I give private tarot readings and can be reached through my Facebook page Tarot with Saoirse. You can, also, join me on my Youtube Channel.  

 

Music Review – Trismegistia

September, 2017

Trismegistia: From Healing to Hounds

 

On Spotify, the tag ‘Come and feel the power!’ pops up as soon as you click on the name Trismegistia. Well OK then, let’s feel it! New music has a power all of its own; a new experience is always something to take time over, so I take my time listening to the two tracks currently available from this Pagan group.

 

The first track I listen to is Hounds of Hekate. I watch the video on YouTube, and am impressed by the imagery; three ladies dance wildly, representing the three faces of Hekate, and the triple crossroads. There is a sense of frenzy in the video, echoed by the gasping breaths that emphasize the percussion.

 

ally, this track has a sense of mystery, of wandering lost, yet with purpose. Perhaps we are running from something, or towards something. The sudden surge of strings plucked wildly gives ways to the heartbeat-breaths of the percussion over and over, not making for easy listening, but lending an air of wonder, and curiosity, even a slight darkness emphasised by the voice of the woman, and the barking of her dogs.

 

In contrast, the other track, Nunnos’ Healing Song, is about as light and airy as you can get. Cello (synthesised) and something akin to a djembe set a gentle mood. Pan pipes announce the arrival of a familiar figure, who tells us, in the short film Nunnos which accompanies the song, that he has many names. Nunnos though is short for ‘Cernunnos’, Celtic lord of the forest, who appears in this guise as a hairy man wearing only ivy, the symbol of the everlasting woods.

 

This ‘song’ is more like a musically accompanied guided meditation, or waking up from a dream. ‘Can you hear me? Can you see me?’ The fog of memory loss is soothed by the voice of the God. Nunnos helps and heals the protagonist, which may be a third person in the song, or maybe it’s us, the listener, being healed every time we listen to Nunnos’ soothing voice. The track ends with Nunnos assuring us we can call him, any moment.

 

The contrast between these two tracks is remarkable, yet both are introspective, calling for inner reflection and a peaceful moment in your day. I would say this is not music to listen to on the go, or while cleaning the house, but whilst taking time for yourself, or to aid in meditation or visualization. I’m certainly intrigued to hear more of this unique musical project.
***

 

About the Author:

 

Mabh Savage is a Pagan author, poet and musician, as well as a freelance journalist.

She is the author of A Modern Celt: Seeking the Ancestors and Pagan Portals: Celtic Witchcraft.

 

Follow Mabh on TwitterFacebook and her blog.



Seeing the Signs

September, 2017

Spirit Cats Inspirational Cards by artist Nicole Piar

 

 

Just recently, I received promotional copy of “Spirit Cats” – an “Inspirational” 48-Card Oracle deck created, written and illustrated by artist Nicole Piar. These past few weeks, I have been using the cards – looking at the lush artwork on the one side and reading the meditative prose on the other – as well as researching everything I could find on Nicole Piar herself.

(“Flow”)

I also looked up tarot and oracle cards featuring cats. I thought – why cats? Why not dogs? Or horses? Or any other animal?

One of the websites I visit regularly – at least once a week, if not more often – is Aeclectic Tarot, at www.aeclectic.net/. This site has literally information on hundreds of tarot decks, oracle cards and Lenormand decks, as well as reviews and forums for discussion. If you want, you can sign up for their monthly newsletter and receive email notification of the newest tarot and oracle decks to hit the divination market. I look forward to these emails every month!

According to Aeclectic Tarot, there are at least 19 tarot and/or oracle decks featuring cats. There are only 8 decks with dogs. You dog lovers really need to catch up! There were 25 tarot and/or oracle decks with other kinds of animals, usually some kind of “totem” animal or “spirit” animal, although there is a “Happy Squirrel” tarot (I kid you not). There are also plant-based tarot and oracle decks – well, I don’t have to tell you that there are tarot and oracle decks for almost every subject under the sun!

Although not yet featured on Aeclectic Tarot – but very soon, I am sure! Maybe next month! – “Spirit Cats” is the newest cat deck to join this illustrious group of cat-based tarot and oracle decks. Perhaps they are what you are looking for.

Nicole Piar writes on her website, www.nicolepiar.com, that the “Spirit Cats come straight from my heart and imagination.”  The Sprit Cat page includes instructions on how to use the cards and testimonials from happy customers, as well as interviews of Piar and reviews of the deck on various independent blogs. These are all worth reading and very informative. The entire site has lots of information on Piar – her education, her artwork, how to commission her, even essays she has written. Anyone interested in either Spirit Cats or its creator should spend some time there.

I liked how the cards had the picture on one side and the writing on the other side. For a beginner reader, that is really helpful. No book to refer to – no memorization – just meditate on your question or attitude for the day, pull a card and then read what it says. Very simple and easy!

I must admit that these cards really grew on me. I showed the cards to numerous friends and some of my family – cats lovers and card lovers – and it seemed to me that these Spirit Cards really hit it off best with the younger crowd. My ten-year-old friend who lives down the street adores them and wants a poster of “Generosity” for her bedroom wall:

My favorite is “Freedom”:

But “Seeker” is also nice:

I love Piar’s use of color. Nothing I have read on her blog or in any of the interviews or reviews tells me what she used to create these cards, but it looks very much like watercolors – if not watercolors, I love how she created that affect! Very flowing and dreamy. Each cat comes to us as from the dream world – with sparkles and stars – each one with a theme and a name – to tell us what we need to know.

So, seek out these cards. You can buy them off Piar’s website. I am not sure if they are available anywhere else, but they are definitely available there. At the very least, check out her website – there’s a lot to hold your attention. I know I was there for quite a long time.

Coming Soon – an interview with Nicole Piar! Be sure to check back!

Brightest Blessings!

References

http://www.nicolepiar.com1

Worth the Witch

September, 2017

 

Review of WitchBox

 

 

(WitchBox Logo)

 

 

What is a WitchBox exactly? According to WitchBox it is:

 

A subscription service for pagan witches based on the Wheel of the Year. A box ships every 6 weeks, 10-12 days before the sabbat.”

 

What this means is that every 6 weeks you will pay a recurring fee of $85 + $10 shipping and you will receive a new Sabbat Box to help you celebrate the upcoming holiday.

 

There are two versions of these boxes. The $85 WitchBox is called the Major Arcana and is filled with all the Bells & Whistles. They do, however, have a lesser priced Sabbat Box subscription, called the Minor Arcana, and this subscription is only $40 + $7 shipping. This box contains, it seems, a little more than half of what the Major Arcana has.

 

PaganPagesOrg has received the Major Arcana Box to celebrate the Sabbat of Lughnasadh/Lammas and we will be reviewing this box for our readers.

 

 

(Sealed Package)

 

The package arrives in a nondescript, plain, brown box. The only writing visible on the box are the addresses. The box does not come addressed from WitchBox but from the owner of the company’s name Jessica White. Their is no logo or pagan symbolism on the outside of the packaging. This is perfect for those who are still in the broomcloset.

 

(Freshly Opened)

 

 

Upon opening the box my first thoughts were It looks tidy, neat, and organized. The first item you notice is a beautiful card. It definitely brings to mind the sabbat we are celebrating, Lughnasadh/Lammas. When you turn over the card there is a handwritten note. A very personal touch.

 

(Personal Note)

 

The second item you notice is a piece of paper. This is the Items List and explains what you will find contained within the box.

 

(WitchBox Logo Sticker and Packaging)

 

After you lift the Items List off the top of the box you see the true package begin. The W., WitchBox logo sticker holding together the deep blue tissue paper is an elegant touch to what I am about to find to be a beautifully layered package.

 

(Scrolls)

 

Layer one contains a majority of the items. It begins with the 2 Scrolls. There is information on both sides of each sheet. They have a nice antiqued feel to them. There is a pleasant aroma coming from the paper. The paper has been antiqued but it has not weakened the feeling of the paper it still feels substantial. They’d be a nice addition to any Book of Shadows. Their Topics include:

 

Page 1:

Information about the Holiday.

to the Holiday…Gods/Goddesses, Crystals, Herbs,etc..

 

Page2:

Late Summer Sigil & Poppet Spell

Lughnasadh/Lammas Blessed Bread Charm

 

(Wrapped Items in Layer One)

 

Removing the scrolls reveals the rest of layer one which is filled with individually wrapped items, like little gifts. Each beautifully wrapped in blue paper with the W. logo stickers.

 

(Contents of Layer 1)

 

The first item I unwrap is a Candle. It is calming & nicely scented. Very smooth to the touch. All items are handmade in WitchBox and the candle looks well handcrafted. The Chamomile is clearly visible in the candle. It is a nice full size not a tiny votive like some would expect.

 

Next I opened the necklace. It is very pretty but not very precious. However, the value lies inside. It opens up to reveal a good amount of Flying Ointment. It is their recipe. It has the consistency of Vaseline and a soothing scent.

 

(Contents of Layer 1 Opened)

 

The last two little packages to open is a Bottle of Incense based on Scott Cunningham’s recipe for Lughnasadh and a Self-Igniting Charcoal Disc. Jessica White clearly states on the Item’s List that it is Scott’s recipe and NOT her own.

 

The incense is placed in a nice corked, glass bottle that allows you to save and reuse the generous amount they send you. The bottle is even labeled on top with the holiday so you will always know what it is for. The self-igniting charcoal disc is a well thought out accompaniment.

 

I

(Three Panel Sigil Chain)

 

Layer two opens to reveal one item, the Three Panel Sigil Chain made with kiln-fired birch rounds seems a bit…well birch is birch, and being birch it is delicate. I thought maybe the panels should be thicker so the chains don’t split through the wood. Even though it seems a bit fragile, I believe if I am careful some paint and some free flowing ideas, a beautiful sigil it will make.

 

(Dried Corn Husk & Blueberry Sprig)

 

Layer three is the last layer and contains a Dried Corn Husk Bundle for Making Corn dolly with a Wild Blueberry Sprig. It came in such a neatly, tied bundle packaged in the bottom of the box. I like the idea of including a craft in the collection. Something you can, yourself make. It can be a great altar or house decoration. You could also use it to connect with your children and teach them about the sabbat by creating the Corn Dolly with your child. The only thing I might do different is include instructions on how to create a corn dolly, but those could easily be found on Pinterest, doing a Google Search, or other sites.

 

(Entirety of Box)

 

Our Overall Thoughts on WitchBox… It’s a great box, with a very professional, put together look. The layers were tidy and added excitement to opening the package.

 

It is definitely filled with items to help you celebrate the Sabbat of the month in the correct fashion. For us it was Lughnasadh/Lammas and I felt every item pertained to the celebration. From information about the sabbat, to spells and rituals you can perform. It gives you materials to correspond with the holiday to use in any of your own workings, a lovely item to make into an altar decoration, and a fun craft to do.

 

The box does not come with instructions on what to do with the items it contains, that is up to you, what you would like to use them for. For example, you may use the incense in a ritual for the sabbat. It does come with a full comprehensive list of what is in the box, though, and the ingredients are listed for items which is very helpful to know.

 

The quality of the items is very good, like the large, beautiful smelling candle or the handmade incense. The only thing I mentioned is the birch circles could have been thicker. But overall everything is of very high quality.

 

Though the box may seem a bit pricey, I do understand why this box would cost as it does. In this business you must spend on packaging and supplies to be able to make your goods. Then there is the crafting/labor side that you do not get paid fairly for. Plus as Jessica White mentions (in the short interview to come), she is out daily foraging for her supplies. That adds even more labor you barely see compensation for. There are a lot of natural pieces in this box, the herbs in the incense, the wild blueberries, the herbs in the candle, the herbs in the flying ointment. The box is almost 100% handcrafted, and as we know handcrafters are never paid fairly.

 

If you are a witch with the financial means, a monthly subscription to WitchBox for $85 will not hurt your finances. It does come with items for the sabbat you would have to buy or could buy to celebrate the holiday, anyway. Their is a $40 version of WitchBox. It gives you a bit less, of what the $85 box contains. It contains some of the same items, so I am confident in saying they will be of great quality, as well. I would suggest going with the $85 box, however. You really do get more bang for your buck. You can check out both boxes here on WitchBox and decide for yourself.

 

WitchBox, I feel, is a reputable company PaganPagesOrg can stand behind.

 

So who is behind WitchBox and all the creative goodies inside?

 

Jessica White is the Founder & Sole Proprietor of WitchBox.co and an etsy store front, WhiteWitchhh, selling witchcraft supplies.

 

We recently had the opportunity to ask Jessica White a few questions about herself and her businesses.

 

PaganPagesOrg(PPO): Can you tell us a little about yourself. Where you are from? What path do you follow?

 

Jessica White(JW): I’m a Pagan witch and Massachusetts native. My family has been in Massachusetts since 1715, so I feel a strong connection to the early colonists of the new world who lived off the land, but there’s an old world element to my practice as well.

 

PPO: How do you choose what goes into each Sabbat Box?

 

JW: The contents of each WitchBox depend on what the earth provides in the weeks before each sabbat. The contents are also based on research I do in various compendia of Celtic and Anglo Saxon writings, Ronald Hutton’s research (and combing through his sources as well), and the needs of a modern witch.

In many ways, New England serves as a cultural bridge between the old world and new. In the Americas, many of us in the new world have lost touch with our agrarian roots through the generations, so we crave the folklore, traditions, and mysticism of our ancestors. The goal of WitchBox is to get subscribers closer to the land and the seasons, and to walk in our ancestors’ footsteps in the modern day. I serve as your mediator with the land: I forage in the wild on an almost daily basis, respectfully harvest what Mother Earth provides in that season, and I use the wild materials in every WitchBox. 

 

PPO: How did the idea for WitchBox come about?

 

JW: I had the idea for WitchBox when someone on tumblr posted about wanting a witch subscription service. It was totally a “Eureka!” moment. Having seasonal affective disorder, I’ve always been very connected to the seasons, so I took the idea a step further and based WitchBox on the Wheel of the Year.

 

If you would like to contact Jessica White with any questions about WitchBox you can email her at:  jessica@whitewit.ch

 

To learn more about WitchBox visit: http://www.witchbox.co/
To see her shop WhiteWitchhh visit: https://www.etsy.com/shop/WhiteWitchhh

 

***

 

About the Author:

 

 

Jennifer Sacasa-Wright is an Eclectic Witch who runs PaganPagesOrg eMagazine. She has many opinions, thoughts, & suggestions, and, at times, has problems holding her tongue. She loves hearing your opinions and thoughts on the magazine and welcomes comments.

 

 

WitchCrafting: Crafts for Witches

June, 2017

Attracting the Fae

 

 

Merry meet.

The summer solstice – along with Beltane and Samhain – are traditional times to honor the fae, fae folk, faeries, or simply, fey. They are magical creatures with powers given them by nature. They are guardians of botanicals, water sources and other natural elements. Others live in a magical underground kingdom.

Fey exist in all cultures, from the little people to elves, and from gnomes to leprechauns. They appear in art, music, folklore and movies. Fey have magic, and magic in and of itself is not good or bad, it’s all about how it’s used.

For some reason, many Americans think of faeries only as cute, tiny, harmless winged creatures. While there are some who look like that, there are many who are ugly and fierce. They can be playful and mischievous or annoying and frightening. If you’ve ever left a pair of earbuds out, the fae will be attracted to come and tangle them. Keys left out can also prompt fey pranks.

The fae like sugar, milk, honey, flowers and miniature people things like fairy houses.

 

 

 

 

Tess Ahlberg makes houses for them from bark, mushrooms and other gifts of nature.

From a young age, she said she was immersed in nature. She’d collect moss, pine cones, mushrooms, animal skins, shells, feathers and discarded insects during her travels in woods, meadows, marshes, swamps and on beaches. Listening to the messages whispered in the leaves, she was inspired to begin making faerie houses out of birch bark she found decomposing on the ground.

I ask permission from the forest, if I can harvest the bark, mushrooms, plants and moss. I also give the spirits a token offering,” she explained.

Milkweed pods and acorns, along with ferns, leaves and wild flowers that she’s pressed also found their way onto pieces of birch bark. She continued making houses, painting cured mushrooms for roofs and adding some details.

They add whimsy and magic when placed in a home; if left outside they will slowly decompose.

To encourage others to appreciate nature, provide homes for the fay, and an escape from the chaotic world, Ahlberg makes kits available. But you can gather all the materials yourself and make a home to invite the fae to visit.

 

 

 

 

In today’s society there is a disconnect with nature,” she said, hoping to help change that by reconnecting people with it.

Faeries are inter dimensional beings. If you go back to remembering your innocence of youth, a time when perhaps as a youth, some of us had glimpses into other enchanted worlds. We saw faeries and other enchanted beings in our peripheral vision,” she said.

You can connect to that magical world by being fae friendly. Houses and other inviting spots can be portals into enchanted worlds.

Try building a cave out of pebbles in a hidden spot in your yard, such as under bushes or in a flower garden. Set out a miniature wooden table and chairs, painted bright colors or wrapped in vines if you wish. Making a circle of stones, shells or pinecones can create a magical space. Hang tiny bells from branches.

 

 

 

 

Flowers such as daisies, cosmos, tulips, honeysuckle, lilac, sunflowers, lavender, snapdragons, pansies and heliotrope are all said to attract fey, as are herbs such as rosemary, mint and thyme.

Fey are also said to be partial to oak, ash, holly, willow and hawthorn trees

 

 

 

 

My three favorite spots in the yard where I was grew up were a stand of lilacs with a narrow space in the center, the small space between two large oak trees, and a willow tree I loved to climb.

To feel close to the fae now, I plant cosmos, sunflowers, rosemary and snapdragons in my community garden plot, leaving the center wild and untouched, seeded with wildflowers that attract hummingbirds, a mugwort plant and morning glories that reseed themselves. I leave offerings there from time to time, and know the fae are present because if I make the mistake of brining my cellphone, they download apps while I work in the garden.

 

 

 

 

They also bless me with joy. May they do the same for you.

Merry part. And merry meet again.

 

Check out Tessimals Celestial Faerie Houses and Faeries on Facebook or at https://www.etsy.com/shop/tessimal.

 

 

Review: WitchEmoji by Pam Grossman

May, 2017

Hunt for Witches No More: WitchEmojis by Pam Grossman

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Witches now have their own charmed emoji to use with iMessenger, thanks to Pam Grossman, a Brooklyn-based writer and curator who focuses on witches, magic and esoteric art.

I created WitchEmoji because I couldn’t find any great witchy, magical emoji to use in my texts,” she states on the witchemoji.com website, adding, “Necessity (or obsessive desire in this case) is the mother of invention.”

Working with an emoji designer who created the icons based on her designs and direction, she then built the app herself. Costing $1.99, it launched early April 2017. The iMessage sticker pack is compatible with iPhones and iPads with iOS 10.1 or newer.

It became the number one sticker pack in the App Store in its first week, beating the likes of Star Wars and Kim Kardashian,” Grossman said. “It’s currently still in the top 20 and getting stellar reviews, which has been very heartening. Just goes to show how much the archetype of the witch is currently resonating with people of all ages.”

WitchEmoji’s 80 images include a besom, cauldron, Book of Shadows, pentacles in all colors, a chalice, a candle, an owl and a love potion along with witches of all hair and skin tones in a variety of situations from flying on a broom to honoring the full moon.

There are so many more emoji I’d like to add to the pack,” she said of her towering list. “It will just depend on what I can afford to develop, so hopefully the pack will keep selling well so I can invest in making more.”

Explicit directions on how to download and load the emoji can be found at https://www.witchemoji.com/.

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I’ve been a witch since I was very little – before I even knew to call myself one,” Grossman said. “Like lots of kids, I gravitated toward stories and artwork that deal with magical themes, and engaged in my own intuitive rituals and wild imaginings. Once I was a teenager, I began to read a lot and explore the path a bit more formally. But it was really discovering the surrealist artists and the writings of Carl Jung and Joseph Campbell that opened things up for me, and made me realize that creativity is the surest path we have to the divine. My practice is very personal and syncretic, and draws as much on the art world as it does on spiritual systems.”

Last May her 36-page book “What Is A Witch,” was released. Illustrated by Canada’s occult sweethearts Tin Can Forest, and published by Tin Can Forest Press, it is described as “an illuminated incantation, a crystalline invocation, a lovingly-crafted celebration of the world’s most magical icon” and a “manifesto on witchcraft.”

Grossman’s blog, Phantasmaphile, can be found at Pamgrossman.com.

She is the associate editor of Abraxas International Journal of Esoteric Studies, co-organizer of the Occult Humanities Conference at New York University, and co-founder of the former Brooklyn arts and lecture space, Observatory, where her programming explored mysticism.

Grossman’s writing has appeared in “Sabat Sciences Occults,” “Huffington Post,” and MSN. Lectures include such topics as the occult in modern art and female magic in Western , and she also teaches classes on spellcraft, ritual and herbalism.

Interview with Moonwater SilverClaw Author of Be A Wiccan Badass

April, 2017

INTERVIEW WITH MOONWATER SILVERCLAW

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Author of Be A Wiccan Badass

“Be A Wiccan Badass” is a easy-to-read, simple guide to the Craft, best for beginners and advanced beginners, although more seasoned practitioners will still get some good advice from it. I recently sat down with Moonwater for a chat.

SM: Good morning, Moonwater. Thank you for taking time out of your schedule to talk with me.

MS: Sure. My pleasure.

SM: I have looked at both your website and your Amazon author page (links below). You have quite a few books to your credit, including “Be A Wiccan Badass”, which I have right here.

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What made you decide to be a writer.

MS: I had a prophetic dream. In the dream, I was at a computer and I was writing. The Gods told me to start a blog. So I did.

At first, I was, like, are you kidding? I’m dyslexic. But you don’t dismiss the Gods, so I started writing. I have a lot of help. I have my sweetheart and friends that edit my stuff.

SM: That’s wonderful. We all need some help in our lives.

MS: Yes, and the Gods have helped me immensely.

SM: Which of your books came first?

MS: “The Hidden Children of the Goddess”

SM: I will be certain to post links to both your website and Amazon page.

MS: This first book is my Wicca 101 book. I wrote it in a specific way.

You see, because I am dyslexic, many of the books I read learning the Craft were sometimes hard to understand. So, I kept the thought in my mind to write simply and to make it easy to understand.

SM: How were you called to Wicca?

MS: …..how many at the time I learned even knew about Wicca? I heard a word I had never heard before. The word was Wicca. I went down to the local book shop and asked the lady behind the counter for any books on the subject. I soon had my arms full of books. I chose one. That one book changed my life forever. What was that book? It was Scott Cunningham’s “Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Pracitioner”.

SM: Scott Cunningham helped so many beginners enter the Craft.

MS: Yes, and I hope that I can do this, too. I want to make Wicca accessible to those who may have a hard time reading and understanding what they have read. For example English as a second language or having dyslexia, as I have, or another learning disability.

SM: I found ” Be A Wiccan Badass” extremely easy to read and understand. It was inviting, as if we were just sitting chatting, as we are now.

MS: Thank you. I tried to make it inviting and friendly.

SM: I believe in one of earlier chats, you had mentioned that you have been practicing for 27 years.

MS: Yes, I have been practicing since the 1990’s.

SM: I read somewhere in the book that you were a Third Degree Initiate. Would you mind sharing with us in what tradition you are trained?

MS: I am a Third Degree Gardnerian

I wrote this book to help others be strong and find their own power. As a young girl, I had no self-confidence and felt like I had no power to change my circumstances.

I needed to experience a shift in myself. Fortunately, my path in Wicca helped me become stronger. Instead of remaining trapped with my then husband, I left. Wicca also strengthened me to become bold. I had to shake off my fear due to enduring dyslexia as a kid. It took courage to become a blogger/author.

With my first book, you can be more confident when you solidify a connection with the Goddess. Even if someone insults you, you can carry yourself with grace and strength because you know the Gods are with you.

SM: You practice a very traditional path of Wicca, but I notice that most of your books focus specifically on the Goddess, or so their titles would indicate, while “Badass” uses both Gods and Goddesses.

MS: No, I do include the Gods in all of my books. However, the Goddess speaks to me and others more, so I put her in the title.

SM: You are specifically speaking of “Hidden Children of the Goddess” or “Badass” with this description.

MS: Specifically “Hidden Children” but the others also include the God.

SM: So, I loved the idea of “speed grounding”.

MS: Thanks. I thought that was a good one. It can help you ground fast, especially if you practice it regularly.

SM: I would think that speed grounding would be for someone who has already been practicing their path for a while and can get to that place relatively smoothly. I find the grounding is part and parcel of deeper work, as well, which is harder than what speed grounding would indicate. Do you think beginners should practice this, or have more of a basic knowledge of the path that they are following?

MS: Yes. I think they need to know how to ground the regular way first. This way they know the process. Otherwise, they don’t know if they are doing it correctly.

SM: Yes, that is the point I was making. I know that there are always those looking for a quick fix and may think that Wicca can provide that, when in reality, it is far from it.

MS: I agree that grounding is a road to deeper work.

Yes. I have a friend that loves what I do but she wants me to make it a quick and fast thing to learn. I tell her that you can’t. You still need to study long and hard and keep studying throughout your life. It is not a fast and cheap spiritual path. It takes dedication and time to practice the techniques of Wicca.

SM: That is most certainly does. It is a lifelong path.

MS: Yes, totally.

SM: I liked the section on forgiving yourself, as that is something we all need to be reminded of. Also, the section on writing your own spells was informative. This seems to be one part that stymies many people.

MS: Yes, I hoped to guide the reader to feel more confident in creating their own spells. Because a spell you write yourself is going to be more effective than one someone else writes.

SM: Very true.

Is there anything you would like to share with the readers of Pagan Pages that they may not get through your books?

MS: I think that Wicca is a positive, spiritually, that really works. The God and Goddess are there to help you on your path; to guide you and nurture your growth. Wicca is for you to become stronger and find you own power. Plus, to know that you are loved by the Gods.

As I said, they have helped me immensely.

SM: I know that you credit Wiccaa and the Gods and Goddesses with saving your life.

MS: You don’t have to believe what someone else tells you that God is, you talk to them and find out yourself.

SM: So, do you consider yourself a “Wiccan Badass”?

MS: <Laughing> I am trying every day. Some days, yes; other days I need a little help. It’s all a learning process. I’m human just like you, and we all as humans make mistakes.

SM: Did I say I was human? <Laughing> Just a little joke.

MS: <Laughing> Well, you are the nicest __________ I have ever met.

Fill in the blank.

SM: Well, Moonwater, I thank you again for taking the time to chat with me today.

MS: Sure, thank you for the chat.

For more information on Moonwater SilverClaw and her books:

https://goddesshasyourback.com

https://smile.amazon.com/Moonwater-SilverClaw/e/B00HV4Z6U2/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1490195654&sr=1-2-ent

Fashion Against Bullying with Review

November, 2016

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“Active Kindness” Apparel Line is Clothing with a Cause, Benefits Teen Anti-Bullying

 

Compassion Brands, the first fashion company to launch retail collections that offers real-time help to teens in crisis, and The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc .,  launched their line  of Active Kindness, now available at all Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s and Younkers stores and online, in addition to loveonahanger.com. The new fashion collection incorporates details of its partnering teen crisis center, Teen Line, on all product and packaging, offering kids and teens help in real time as they shop.

Compassion Brands and Stony Apparel teamed up to design the stylish Active Kindness t-shirt collection for juniors in sizes XS-XL. The new line includes six shirts in various colors and styles, featuring messages of empowerment such as “Don’t Be a Bully” and “Be Kind to Yourself.” Each tee comes with a unique tag that includes a Teen Line hotline number for anyone seeking help or advice against bullying. Teen Line, based out of Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, is the main anti-bullying charity financially supported by the company.

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“On the label of each shirt it clearly states the toll free helpline’s phone number and their cause.” -PaganPages

“Active Kindness is a new brand that I developed to address the epidemic of bullying by inspiring others and working collaboratively with industry leaders to be united in kindness through the art of fashion,” said Gigi Yeoman, Founder of Compassion Brands. “Partnering with The Bon Ton Stores, Inc. and Stony Apparel is a major step for the brand and we hope to help as many kids as possible with information on Teen Line to provide a resource for the many kids that are in need of immediate help.”

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“Each shirt is emblazoned with a positive message for kids to feel and pass on”. -PaganPages

With designs that are both high quality and stylish, Active Kindness marries fashion forward trends with positive messaging for teens everywhere.

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“The long and short sleeve shirts are soft on the skin and to touch. Great choice of  material.  The fits are relaxed which I appreciated.  Not fitted as if for small adults.  The messages are cute and positive.  The labels in each shirt are amazing.  The shirts seem very well made, no hanging strings, well stitched.  Our teen model felt comfortable in them.  She said they were very soft and looked nice on.  All in all we know this campaign can reach and help many teens who are being bullied”. -PaganPages

For more information about Compassion Brands, visit www.CompassionBrands.com.

 

About Compassion Brands

Compassion Brands was founded by Gigi Yeoman, wife of actor Owain Teoman (Turn, The Mentalist), whose fashions have been showcased across the industry. Having designed and manufactured for some of the biggest names in retail, Gigi was inspired to create a collection of fashion that did more than just follow current trends by focusing on making a difference. Compassion Brands is a collective of socially conscious executives in fashion design, retail, the arts and philanthropy, who aspire to enlighten engage and empower our global community through fashion, to bring about a transformational and positive cultural change on important social issues. By developing and marketing our cause related fashion brands we fulfill one very significant goal: to bring awareness and support to charitable causes, through positive messaging fashion! Compassion Brands platforms a revolutionary shift in charitable funding.

 

About The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc.

The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc., with corporate headquarters in York, Pennsylvania and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, operates 267 stores, which includes 9 furniture galleries and five clearance centers, in 26 states in the Northeast, Midwest and upper Great Plains under the Bon-Ton, Boston Store, Bergner’s, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s and Younkers nameplates.  The stores offer a broad assortment of national and private brand fashion apparel and accessories for women, men and children, as well as cosmetics and home furnishings.  The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. is an active and positive participant in the communities it serves.

 

For store locations and information visit www.bonton.com. Join the conversation and be inspired by following Bon-Ton on FacebookTwitterInstagramPinterest and the fashion, beauty and lifestyle blog, #LoveStyle.

 

About Stony Apparel

Created in 1996, Stony Apparel is a fashion forward contemporary junior, girls and plus size apparel company that has worked with major retailers nationwide. The design-driven company focuses on trendy apparel for the fashion conscious customers, with all products designed in Southern California.

 

About Teen Line

Teen Line is the nonprofit, community-based organization that Compassion Brands has partnered with to help troubled teens address their problems before they become a crisis by providing personal teen-to-teen education and support through community outreach, modern technology and a confidential national hotline operating every evening from 6 – 10 pm PST.

 

Book Review: To Suffer a Witch by Claudia Hall Christian

April, 2016

To Suffer a Witch by Claudia Hall Christian

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This book was written by Claudia Hall Christian. Now, I haven’t read anything by her before, but I can tell you right now that will change. I really loved this book. This is the first work of fiction that I have written a review for and I will make sure not to spoil anything.

To suffer a Witch has great characters that I came to genuinely care about. It’s all about some people that were hung during the Salem witch trials in 1692. But, twenty of them came back as immortal witches. You do learn a lot of what happened to them over the three hundred and twenty two years, but it takes place in 2015 in the city of Boston. You get to go into the past and read all about what they went through and how they came to where they are now.

The main character is Em. And she is a very strong female lead character. She is caring, brave, powerful and smart. Her love for her friends is strong and in general you can tell right from the start that she has a good heart and you want the best for her, and her companions. There are for sure moments in this book that made me sad. It took me to a place where I can’t even imagine what all those people went through during the trials. The pain and suffering they felt is overwhelming. You can tell Claudia did her research and she is very good at putting detail and emotion into this book. It made my heart ache thinking about all the innocent lives lost during that time. The first part in the book that made me super sad is when you learn about the loss of a young daughter. Thinking of innocent children also being killed just makes me sick. It seems so real and you feel their pain and misery in this book.

The book keeps you hooked on pure curiosity and excitement. If you start the book, there is no way you won’t finish it. Right from the start I found myself asking lots of questions. How did this happen to them? Will they find a way out of the danger they are in? Who are these witches and will they survive? Why were these 20 specifically chosen to be immortal when so many others died? And Christian does a great job of answering questions, and keeping you turning pages to find out more and see what happens. There is for sure a lot of suspense in here, and that’s one of the reasons I love it. I find some books have some major dull parts, but even when delving into the characters past and stories there isn’t a part in this that made me feel that.

This book is well written, and for once I don’t have complaints about the editing! The concept of the novel is great and I’m glad she put this story out there for all to read. I think it would be a good read for anyone. Whether you are familiar with the happenings of the Salem trials or not. Whether you want some suspense, some history, or even some love. More people need to discover this wonderful book and author. I find I don’t read as many novels anymore as I used to, but after looking at her website (http://claudiahallchristian.com) I know I have a few more to look forward to adding to my list.

Honestly, this 520 page book is unique and interesting. It’s a major page turner and I recommend you check it out. It’s an adventure worth going on.

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