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Book Review & Interview – Practical Magic, a Beginner’s Guide to Crystals, Horoscopes, Psychics & Spells by Nikki Van De Car

January, 2019

Book Review & Interview

Practical Magic

A Beginner’s Guide to Crystals, Horoscopes, Psychics & Spells

I was lucky enough to receive a copy of the beautiful book “Practical Magic”, written by Nikki Van De Car and illustrated by Katie Vernon. This book was published by Running Press Philadelphia, in 2017. It’s a beginner’s guide to all things magical. It’s 152 pages long and is a hard back book. There is an optional kit that accompanies this book, that comes with a mini-book, 2 crystal tumbles, temporary tattoos, and a fold out natal chart. Both the book and kit are available through many retailers, including Amazon and Barnes & Nobles. The book is also available for kindle. I was able to dig into both the book and the awesome kit, so read on to hear my opinions.

First off, both the book and kit are so beautiful! I love hardback books, and even more so if they have a gorgeous cover with an appealing title and artwork. The artwork throughout this book is very lovely.

This book is an amazing book for anyone new to magic or metaphysical topics, as it covers many, many topics and gives a nice overview of the subjects to get you started. In the introduction of the book, Nikki says it perfectly:

“Here’s the thing-you don’t have to believe in magic to enjoy this book. You just have to want to.”

I LOVE that!

This book has 3 parts, (1) Healing for Hedge Witches, (2) Magic for the Weekend Wiccan, and (3) Casual Clairvoyance.

There is information on so many topics, here are some (there are many more), auras, palm reading, tarot, crystals, sabbats, horoscopes/astrology, dream interpretation, herbs, chakras, and some recipes and spells too. It’s chock full of subjects I personally am very interested in, and I know most of my friends would be as well.

The book is geared toward beginners to magic, but as someone that’s been involved in magic for a long time, I still found the book educational and fun to read. Some topics I’m more familiar with than others, but each chapter I got something out of. I think anyone would enjoy this book very much.

Their is a very nice kit that you can get to accompany the book. In the kit you get an adorable mini book, a gemmy rose quartz tumble, a gorgeous tigers eye tumble, metallic & horoscope temporary tattoos and a fold out natal chart you can fill in with your birth info. There are sections in the book that will teach you about both the crystals and how to fill out the natal chart.

I love this kit, it ties in with the book perfectly and is such a fun addition! If you know me at all, you know I LOVE crystals, so I was thrilled two beautiful ones were included!

Including the natal chart was a great idea and very helpful for those new to astrology. And I’m also a big fan of metallic flash tattoos, so love that this fun element was included. The kit is also a great price for all that’s packed in.

I thoroughly enjoyed both this book and the kit. This would make a perfect gift for someone interested in all things magical. Its also available through many sites and at a fair cost. I highly recommend this book and kit!

Nikki was so kind… as to answer some questions I had for her. Here are my questions and her responses.

Retha: What inspired you to write this book?

Nikki: I just love magic. I always have- I was the kid that talked to trees, hoping a dryad would answer. As I got older, I let all of that go, but writing this book gave me the freedom to get close to that feeling again. It gave me permission to be open to that kind of wonder- and that’s what I wanted to share.

Retha: What is one thing you hope readers learn from your book?

Nikki: I want people to recognize the power of their own will. Over and over again in the book I say ‘magic is about intention’. And so it doesn’t matter how you want to channel your intention, your will, your magic- whether its through chakras or dreams or herbal remedies. What matters is how you live your life in that sense of personal power and possibility.

Retha: What made you decide to include a kit to go along with your book?

Nikki: This was my publishers idea! Its a fantastic addition, and I just love it.

Retha: Who is your target demographic with this book?

Nikki: It’s pretty feminine, so for sure women. I’m in my late 30s and I would 10/10 buy this book, so for sure I’m part of that target demographic! But I feel like there’s an insurgency of a younger generation of Wicca-curious millenials, and I hope this book can support them.

Retha: How long have you been interested in magical practices?

Nikki: After I grew up and got all adulty, I let go of magic for a long time. It was only within the past 5 years or so that I began to reconnect with my love of magic- when I sort of re-met that part of myself, and I found I still really like her! Once I gave myself permission to explore magic again, I started incorporating rituals, spells, herbal healing, and the like into my daily life.

Retha: What is your favorite section in the book?

Nikki: Personally, I turn to the herbal healing section ALL THE TIME. It’s the most practical. But I loved writing the section on pagan holidays, and those have become a large part of life. I love ritual and holidays, and having explored the meanings of these celebrations, I have found I really wanted to make them a part of my family’s life.

Retha: Are you planning on writing more books on magical/metaphysical content?

Nikki: Yes! In fact I have 2 more on the way! “Magical Places” is coming out in 2019 and “Wellness Witch” will follow shortly thereafter! “Magical Places” explores the haunted, healing and fairy-occupied places of the world, and “Wellness Witch” expands on some of the healing practices in “Practical Magic” with specific recipes and rituals.

You can reach Nikki Van De Car through –

Instagram: @nikkivandecar

Website: nikkivandecar.com

I hope you enjoyed both my review and my interview with the lovely Nikki, and hope you will check out her website and book!! A huge thank you to Nikki for answering my questions & sending me her book to review and enjoy!

Click HERE for Amazon Information
Click HERE for Amazon Information

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About the Author:

Retha N. Lent has been married for 17 years to her husband Mark & they have four cats that are their life. She lives in Norristown, Pa. Retha has her Bachelor’s of Science degree in Behavioral Counseling Sciences from Drexel University. She is the owner of “Retha’s Crystals” & sells sterling silver unique crystal jewelry & specimens on her FB business page. She has a FB group for her customers and those interested in learning more about crystals & all things magical called “Retha’s Crystal Circle“. She is also an advisor in the Sage Goddess Affiliate Program. She has her Holistic Healing Certificate and Pillars of Priestessing certificates from Sage Goddess. She is also an Ordained Pagan Minister from the Universal Life Church. Retha has a passion for crystals, nature, astrology, working with moon cycles, ritual practices, tarot and oracle cards, runes, essential oils, herbs, manifestation work, ancient cultures, magic & music. Her favorite place is New Orleans, La. Retha has an extensive personal crystal collection and loves sharing her love of crystals with the world. She has been a practicing pagan since she was 16 years old. 

You can reach her at rethalent@hotmail.com or on her business page on FB: https://www.facebook.com/Rethas-Crystals-197411227666484/

Or in her FB group:

https://m.facebook.com/groups/1960619300929876

Her Sage Goddess affiliate link is:

www.sagegoddess.com/ref/84/

Or follow her on Instagram at @spookygirl16

Worth the Witch

November, 2018

The Magickal Earth

 

Nature’s Miracles”

 

This month we are diving into a box that is deceivingly small by The Magickal Earth. Their Premium Subscription Box is packed to the gills with items “curated to offer guidance through the months astrological phase. The box will always feature a monthly astrological overview, a brief monthly horoscope, a tarot card chosen for you by the universe, crystals and gems to match the months energy, along with a variation of surprises including items such as, candles, essential oils, soap and, smudge sticks.”

All of this is included in the Premium Subscription Box for only $49.99 a month. This is just one of the Subscription Boxes that The Magickal Earth has to offer. They range in price from a mere $14.99 to $49.99 and cover a variety of wants and needs, from Crystal Boxes to Bath Boxes.

 

Now, let’s get into the box!


The smell emanating from the box is delicious and enticing. It makes me want to tear it open in a rush, but I must be methodical! So I open it carefully and peek inside.

First things first…what do we pull out???

 

Astrology Reading

When you are ordering your box you are asked to give your birth date. This is because The Magickal Earth includes a personal monthly astrology reading with this subscription box. I’m a Libra as you can see. You also get a pamphlet with planetary influences & energies for the month of the sign of the box.

 

One Card Pull

A one card Tarot pull is done for you. My card chosen was Temperance. They send you the card that is pulled for you along with another sheet that explains the Tarot card. It is up to you to read how this card plays in your life.

 

Abalone Smudge Shell

I am in love with this Abalone Shell. It’s large and very iridescent inside, delicate seeming, but sturdy, and gorgeous. The picture only sort of catches a bit of rainbow on the inside.

The iridescence is carried over the outside over a silver finish. There are a few “portholes” along the side that just add to the beauty. On the “mound side” there is a slight rusty patina on some of the holes giving it a real sea feeling.

 

BloodStone

Now this is an awesome piece of Blood stone that The Magickal Earth sends you. It is a big, smooth, tumbled piece. It is the size of the palm of your hand. It feels delicate, you don’t want to drop it. The color play in the stone is mesmerizing. A small card with some facts about Bloodstone accompanies the stone.

 

Quartz & Green Aventurine Stones

Two pieces of Quartz. They are both points. One is unique as it has a two points connected, one off shoot from the side. The larger one is a decent size, and the tinier one is on a small-scale but the uniqueness of it makes up for that.

The Green Aventurine is marbled with two shades of a light and dark green. It is smooth, tumbled, and medium-sized. A beautiful specimen.

 

Citrine

This is my favorite piece of Citrine that I have ever seen. I am amazed at the generous size. It is simply gorgeous! This picture does not do it justice. I could not get one that did. A huge piece of rough Citrine. A cloudy white base that rises to a deep yellow top that is flecked with almost rust colored specs. The vibrations coming from this stone are amazing.

 

Lip Care

Lip care by Night Bloom Apothecary is included in the Subscription Box. It feels very moisturizing on the lips. The scent is natural. It leaves a fresh feeling behind. When you rub your lips together it blends in nicely. It’s not overly oily feeling on your mouth or gooky.

 

Bar of Soap

Minty Magic is the name of the bar. The sticker on the back of the packaging tells you all the ingredients. It has a true mint scent, not a sweet mint, but a fresh mint scent. It lathers nicely and leaves behind a clean feeling, not dry.

 

 

Crystal Infused Energy Cleansing Mist


This blend is by NightBloom Apothecary. You can see the herbs & stones in this mixture. More so than I have seen in other’s that I have reviewed. You shake it and hear the many crystals chime against each other. When reading the ingredients you see they are pure de-stressers; lavender, clary sage, etc… The scent is amazing and it leaves you feeling soothed.

 

Stand and Smudge Stick to Complete Smudge Set

Now I am on the bottom of the box and what do I find? The Magickal Earth truly meant for this to be a Smudge Set. They have included a Stand. I thought the gorgeous Abalone Shell was just a stand alone. This is a great surprise. It’s a very nice wooden stand accompanied by a large smudge stick. This is a most wonderful Smudge Set.

 

My Overall Opinion…

I found The Magickal Earth to have a very impressive box. I really enjoyed their theme of cleansing in the box and think they kept it on target with great products made of wonderful quality. The portions in their Subscription Box were very generous. I have found my new citrine for working with. The Smudge Kit is a great gift for those new to smudging as well as those who have been smudging for years. The Energy Cleansing Mist impressed me the most with it’s quality. I also, really appreciated their personal attention with the astrology reading & one card drawing.  It really personalizes your box, you know no one else is getting a box like yours.  They spent time thinking about just you for the moment.  This box is most definitely Worth the Witch!

 

We got to speak with the woman behind The Magickal Earth boxes, Janet Barto, and ask her the usual from Worth the Witch. Here is what Janet had to say…

PaganPagesOrg (PPO): What brought the idea of your box to you?

Janet Barto(JB): When we started the Magickal Earth we started not with the subscription box in mind. I wanted to do what I loved most and that was crystals and rocks. The subscription box idea just came. We looked at the different boxes being offered and wanted to be unique. Thus, we came up with combining Astrology, Tarot and Crystals together.

PPO: How did you begin them?

JB: I won’t lie, it was a huge process. So much research went into every aspect. From Designing the box to how the contents would be included. I must say it is very hard work to start a subscription box. Especially ours and other like ours. So much attention to every detail. When you start you want every single piece to be absolutely perfect.

PPO: How do you choose what you include inside of them?

JB: First, we look at the Astrological calendar, then we look at the season, and from there I let my intuition take it home. Every item is hand chosen. Every item has a meaning of some kind to make it all part of the whole.

PPO: Is yours a recurring monthly box?

JB: Yes, we offer our box in many forms. We have a recurring box on Cratejoy and on our website. We then also off 3 or 6 month subscriptions at a discounted rate. Costing ranges from $14.99 delivered to $49.99 delivered.

PPO: Are you, yourself pagan?

JB: I am a second degree priestess within Chalice Hart in Washington. I am also a medium and I have trained in Shaman work.

PPO: Tell us about your interests.

JB: I have 2 business I now run full-time. But when I get to play we go on Jeep Runs. We do a lot of off roading in the mountains. I also love Football and Baseball.

PPO: Did you feel the pagan world was missing something to make you create your Box?

JB: This is a good question. I believe the answer is that I wanted ordinary people who had interests in Astrology and in Tarot to be able to order a box that was not just about witchcraft or spells. Kind of a middle ground. I wanted to really try to express that we are all part of the universe no matter what religion or craft you follow.

PPO: Do you have a site and sell other products?

JB: Our website is still a work in progress. As we are doing the boxes we are meeting people with many wonderful handmade items. Magickal Earth is about anything that comes from the Earth.

Our goal at The Magickal Earth is about personal attention. When you order from us we think hard about exactly the right stone or item to pick out for you. We understand how difficult it is for people to order crystals online. It is hard to not be able to see or feel. So when we are choosing for you, we are thinking hard about you and letting the universe help us chose the right one.

The Magickal Earth is growing everyday. And we believe that those who order from us become part of our family. It is all about our connection to them through the universe.

 

I think they really understood and connected with me. From my readings…to the crystals that really rang a note with me…this was an incredible box. Thank you Janet Barto for taking the time to chat with us. You really have an incredible box on your hands.

 

If you would like to get The Magickal Earth’s Boxes in your hands, Here’s their links:

The Magickal Earth’s Website:

https://themagickalearth.com/

 

The Magickal Earth on CrateJoy:

https://www.cratejoy.com/subscription-box/magickal-provisions/

 

The Magickal Earth Bath Box on CrateJoy:

https://www.cratejoy.com/subscription-box/magickal-earth/

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/themagickalearth

 

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

 

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/barto1866/

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About the Author:

Jennifer Wright is a witch on a path of change that is always winding. She founded PaganPagesOrg in the hopes of giving those a platform to share and learn without judgment. There are too many important things to her and not enough room to mention them. You are one of them.