Evolution of Birthday Parties

I’m so happy we have arrived at the stage of sleepover birthday parties. Crazy, right? The stress of a two hour affair is worse for me. Now, I just make sure there’s food, cake, and ice cream and let them do what they want. Which is to hangout in their bedroom.

I check in from time to time, but they’re all just having fun. No phones. I’m quite delighted that they would rather not have their face in a screen.

Other than the rambunctious noise from the second floor, it’s a quiet evening. I don’t even decorate anymore. I’m too tired. The birthday girl is having a great time and I barely had to try.

I still stressed. I mean, why not? The house still needed to be cleaned for company and I still had to figure out snacks and a meal. I’ll make chocolate chip waffles in the morning. Now I can just sit back and knit.

It’s Pretty Funny

After writing about finding my three tarot decks (and not working well with the Oracle deck I have), someone I work with brought in an Oracle deck with a note that said “Take Me”. I’m just realizing how very Alice in Wonderland that is.

I was instantly drawn to the deck, but tried to let them sit. I looked at them a little and couldn’t tell if they wanted to come home with me, so I went home without them. The next day I really couldn’t resist and did a three card draw of past, present, and future. The cards began to harmonize and that brief reading sealed the deal.

These are some of my favorites. I have shuffled through them a bit and found what the book said to be true. Instinct is all I need to read them. They have drawn me in. And then I started thinking about my other Oracle deck. They had always seemed rather instinctual as well, but I had never been able to trust myself before.

So I shuffled through them after pulling them from their safe spot. I did a three card reading: my current state, the conflict or difficulty, and the outcome or solution. Spot on. The harmony of Truth in the air.

Now I have three active tarot decks and two Oracle decks. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with all these cards. It’s not like I really have an avenue for doing readings. I am still working on my giant map of comparing the six different tarot decks in this house, so…

At any rate I’m tickled to be able to work with all of them and explore this fascinating style of scrying. After over twenty years I’m entering a whole new level of it.


I’m fine.

My body and I have had an adventure of a journey together. I’m sad to say I have deliberately cut myself off from this organic machine at different points in my life. Understanding that I had to in order to survive doesn’t make this treacherous journey of reconnection any easier.

I’m fine.

We’ve been through massive changes before. Feelings of betrayal and wonder. Discoveries of impossible strength and courage. Joys so great I felt like bursting. This body and I have been doing it all together.

I’m fine.

The flood of relief at being heard and validated is crushing. The dark regressions of freshly unearthed skeletons exhaust me as I’m poked and prodded to discover the source of my latest troubles. My body unable to separate past trauma from our current reality. My brain desperately trying to provide comfort while wishing for it as well.

It’s fine.

I’m almost frozen. Something is wrong, but how wrong is yet to be determined. Normal life still happens. Crazier than ever. I take the moments I can to fall apart- relieve the pressure enough to live my life.

I’m fine.

It’s being fully immersed in the present moment that allows joy to be felt. Not chasing the woes of the future.

Collecting Tarot Decks

I bought my first tarot deck from a New Age store at fifteen. At the time, I lived in a small city where finding this kind of establishment felt almost scandalous.

I had been brought up in a loving, kind, and supportive Christian environment and my exploration into other beliefs was often encouraged. My mom, who was working on her masters degree in ministry at the time, would take us to these kinds of shops herself. All paths held value in our home. (She did later tell me that she didn’t want tarot cards in her house, but by that time the cards were already comfortably sitting in my room. There’s more to that conversation-later.)

I remember it all so vividly. I tried to be very practical about it. The deck that I couldn’t resist had a large book sold separately and of course I wanted the complicated cards. I bought the book first and began reading through while I earned the money for the deck.

I began getting anxious as I waited. It was as though my time was running out. I finally had the funds, even if it was a stretch and excitedly bought the deck roughly a month later. About a week or two after that I wanted to find more goodies at the store, but it was gone. Boarded up and empty. It was as though it had never existed. I had always had company when I went, but it was as though no one even remembered the place.

We’ve been thick as thieves ever since. I often carried them with me, studied the book over and over. I wrote out all my readings and mapped out the correlations and extra meanings. Because they are circular, the readings have even more interpretations; more nuance. Some names are different and the layouts are really in-depth.

Until a year ago, they were my only deck. I had tried a more traditional one, but we never clicked. I tried a fairy Oracle deck, but they were too fluffy for me. One deck was plenty and I was satisfied to keep it that way.

Then, this past Halloween, I came across a Hocus Pocus deck at Target. They practically jumped into my cart. My oldest has a Nightmare Before Christmas deck and I really love the way they represented the cards through the story characters. This deck is the same way and has its own specific layouts too.

Then, I came across an Alice in Wonderland deck at Jo Ann Fabrics. I actually talked myself out of buying them, but couldn’t resist. I raced back after work a couple days later to grab them before heading home to get the kids from the bus stop. Three decks. It feels like a good number.

They all seem to get along. Mother Peace is still my main deck with over twenty years together. The Hocus Pocus is more for fun. Nothing too heavy in those readings.

The Alice in Wonderland has been more exciting than I had thought. It’s almost as though we’ve known each other all along. They fit with a different aspect of me than my Mother Peace.

I’m enjoying unlocking a deeper understanding of tarot through these three different perspectives. My kids have gotten really into tarot as well, and each have found a deck they like. With their permission, I’ve been looking at those layouts and meanings and delighting in their different ways of seeing the same thing. The different intentions of each set.

It’s Not Working

If my discarded blog posts could be made into a physical pile of crumpled pages, I’d be buried in them.

I keep getting these great ideas, but they morph into slippery blobs when I try to type them up. I can’t seem to stay on point and the rambling is really annoying.

If I can’t get an idea right, I typically toss it. For this platform, if I can’t get it mostly right the first time, I’m not going to get it right later. Some posts I hold for a day or two to edit a bit, but I predominantly write and post.

I started this to find my voice again. It has been really helpful in that endeavor and I have started writing other things as well. I enjoy the quick idea, or finally being able to give clear(-ish) words to my thoughts here.

So, another post about nothing. Maybe once the rain clears (in a few days) my brain fog will clear and words will just flow. One can always hope.


I have been journaling since I was able to write. I still have my first diary packed away with all the other journals and notebooks I have recorded my life in. Over twenty of them. Every ten years I pull out that box and leaf through them.

Since I met my husband I’ve been too caught up with life to write about it much. I’ve tried to jot down important happenings and how I’m doing, but it often falls to the end of my to-do’s and is left undone.

Like this journal. I started this one in 2018. It’s barely a quarter full. I keep trying to grab it and make myself write. It’s easy once I get started. I even leave it laying around, in my line of sight, but I’m so easily distracted.

So I brought it to work today hoping that maybe I can write a bit between my appointments. Instead, I’m sitting here typing this post. I promise. I’ll start in a minute.

Self-Image: Surprise Twist

Years ago I used to workout at a gym a few times a week. I kept this up for almost two years. I was almost to the point of considering getting into competitions when we decided to move again and a gym membership wasn’t an option anymore. (I did continue working out at home, though).

For most of my life I have been pretty thin. I never thought of myself as very active because I was never very athletic, but when I think back, I rarely sat still for long. I walked everywhere, played sports, started working in restaurants, and loved stretching and doing yoga.

Because of this, I have dealt with my fair share of insults for being thin, blonde, and whatever other beauty standard I apparently had and others wanted. I have dealt with too much unwanted attention and the fear and trauma of people asserting their needs on me.

This created an interesting effect when I found myself overweight after having two kids. I wasn’t enormous or anything, but the extra weight hurt and wasn’t healthy for me. So my mom set me up with a gym membership and I took a closer look at what I was eating.

When I started out, I was almost invisible. I could look like a fool and the response would be easy to take. I obviously needed to be at a gym to shed some pounds. Men didn’t look, women didn’t comment. I was free to focus on myself and my health.

I worked hard, ate a better diet full of rich variety and home-cooking, and made sure to rest when I needed it. As the months worn on I got stronger and more confident in my workouts. I began designing them specifically for what I had set as my goals. I stretched diligently and was a better mom for it.

Then others began to notice the results of all my efforts. None of it was about being healthier. It was all about being thinner, sexier, what my secrets were. I got really self conscious in the changing room and while using machines. I mostly did free weights and used the cable machine, but would often use other options and felt judged. Some of it was definitely my own insecurities. The more in shape I got, the more self conscious I became.

I went from clearly needing to workout, to why is she bothering? I went from being the chubby mom, to a fit one to be jealous of. There was no credit for how much effort I had put into it all. No recognition of the research, the trial and error, the struggles I faced. Just another thin blonde who had no business being attractive. Except for those that had actually paid attention, and those who also put in the effort of designing their strength. They knew what it had taken me to get to this point.

Funny thing is, I’ve always seen myself as pretty plain. Not in a bad way. I like blending into a crowd and being able to observe everything unobtrusively. I’m definitely not a beauty icon. I’m just me.

I did think it was interesting how shocking this revelation was for many of the women that I spoke to. How could being more attractive make you feel less so? Now, after three pregnancies, I am pretty set at a slightly squishy size. It fluctuates with my ability to stay active and eat right, but it’s the happiest I’ve ever been about my size. I’m not thin enough for rude judgments, nor large enough for the same. I’m just right to make most people feel comfortable.

It’s a refreshing place to be.

I Don’t Have a Problem

Buying more books while I’m in the middle of five others simply because I found myself with some time to kill this morning isn’t a sign of a problem, right?

A teen horror and a fairy tale reimagined. It’s not like these are my two favorite things or anything. Plus, I’m a sucker for the Barnes & Noble $5 cafe counter buy. I don’t always buy them, but if they look interesting, why not? I’ve discovered some wonderful reads this way.

Straight to the shelf they went. I will finish a couple of my current open books before moving on. I’m getting really into Midnight Sun (yes, more Twilight). I know the whole story, but reading from his perspective has added a lot. I’m also getting the impression that the author wanted to set a few things straight with this one and I’m here for it.

Then I want to finish The Woman They Couldn’t Silence by Kate Moore about women locked up in asylums in the 1860’s. Well, one in particular, but it’s about all of them too. And then I still want to finish The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires by Grady Hendrix. It started out a hoot, but has begun to wane a bit. I’m sure it will pick up again soon.

Some Simple Meals

The only way I can make our chicken last is for me to cook it all at once. I’ve been throwing breasts into the slow cooker with water and lots of seasoning and then adding it to whatever I’m making.

One night was chicken stir fry with brown rice, frozen vegetables, and teriyaki sauce. It made for some good lunch leftovers for work.

This meal looks way uglier than it tasted. I didn’t follow the original recipe. I was tired and just put stuff together in the oven that seemed to make sense. This is carrots and apples cooked with oil, water, sugar, and molasses. I just added chicken from the crockpot to it. Everybody was pretty happy with it.

This meal was the first time I used our air fryer. I wanted to make these biscuits and the cooking temperatures for them and the frozen fries were so different I thought it was a good time to learn how to use it. I had to ask my husband for help and managed just fine when I learned which button to push to start it.

We had open faced turkey sandwiches on biscuits with honey mustard and cheddar cheese. Fries on the side with more honey mustard for dipping. Fairly simple meals that have left us feeling pretty satisfied.

Rabbit Holes

Man have I done it to myself. This passion project about Twilight (which is really a bigger passion project about sexism in literature) has taken me down a lot of paths. I knew this would happen. Sigh.

I’m only slightly surprised that it’s overlapping with my Beauty and the Beast project. The similarities between the two stories is fairly obvious, but how much is misinterpreted, misunderstood, and the falsely applied criticisms took me a bit longer to notice.

I’m actually most surprised by the critics who admit they’re not the target audience, and that looking at the saga as a romance, escapism, wish fulfillment story, makes it totally work and even well done. Then they proceed to cut it to shreds with unfounded takeaways and use a guise of ‘protecting young women’ from taking fictional stories as a real life guide.

I also think the outrage over Meyer’s vampires is comical. “They have no weaknesses”, “sparkling is stupid”, “not needing to sleep is wrong!” What’s especially funny is that Meyers never read horror or anything about vampires before writing this, so comparing her creatures to that of literature lore is ridiculous. Also, all but the sparkling has been covered in numerous stories of different phases of the lore, including the beginnings of it all.

Also, the sparkling makes sense within this reality. These aren’t horror genre vampires. They’re romance creatures where dying in sunlight would have been even more out of place for the overall tone of the saga.

Plus there’s all the sexist gatekeeping about vampires. Male fan perspective tends to be that they need to be scary and ugly creatures. This entirely disregards the original idea of vampires being frightening because they are so alluring and attractive while also being extremely dangerous. The long standing erotic nature of vampire lore also discounts the idea that they are only hideous monsters.