Friday, July 31, 2020

Ashiness is not spiritual: Witchy wellness, part 7.

Blessings Darlings!

Side note - we finally got some rain this morning.  Might get more tomorrow.  Today was very hot and nasty humid.  Tomorrow might be cooler.  One hopes.

Now, back to our regularly scheduled rant!

#15 and #16 - Herbalism and sound healing.  Nice things to work with.  Regular Herbalism isn't witchy, of course.  But neither regular nor magical herbalism is going to be learned and thus used quickly.  FFS, actual herbalism will require deep knowledge of astrology, the Greek humours, etc, which are anathema to the person who came up with this.  Sound healing ... is very relaxing.  But appropriated and used incorrectly, which the person says she's against. 

How odd.

#17 Soak.  I don't know if this is about epsom salt or spiritual baths.  Really, just soaking in water tends to feel good, but that doesn't mean that it actually has a health value OTHER than feeling good.  No evidence that the magnesium from epsom salts enter your body to relax muscles.   So it ain't 'wellness'.

Spiritual baths are great.  But you will need to know how to wake the ingredients.  And some training in ingredients for different conditions, and how often to use them for best results.  Training.  Not reading some .... unseasoned flatbread author's book or web site.  I don't have this training.

It doesn't mean that I don't soak in a tub with brewed herbs and flowers in it.  But I don't pretend that I'm doing conjure or Hoodoo when doing it, or that it's going to have that level of effect.  It's going to smell nice and relax me, for sure.  That said, knowing that I'm going to have to really scrub the tub before and after (the Spawn is formally in charge of keeping the tub clean, but  he ... doesn't put in the appropriate elbow grease.  I love him.  He's GREAT.  He usually does a perfectly adequate job on cleaning bathrooms, but he is not good about cleaning the tub.

BTW, for your cleaning ease, if you're adding herbs, BREW THEM FIRST, STRAIN THE LIQUID, AND ONLY ADD THE LIQUID.  Removing the 'tea' leaf detritus from the tub if you don't do that first is a total drag.  Flowers and flower petals aren't depressing to clean up.  The herb crap IS.  Or at least put them in a cloth bag and put that in the tub.  You'll thank me later.

Oh, moisturize after your spiritual bath.  Ashiness is not spiritual.

#18 Sexual Wellness.  Accepting and making decisions about your sexual expression is totally a wellness issue.  Alas, virtually everything out there on this ... discredits asexuals and those who choose celibacy.  It's all about accepting and expressing.  And of course, because all her points are on a meme, we again have no idea what she is aiming for here.  I'm guessing that she isn't talking about 'sex magic' or 'this spell requires celibacy for a month before doing it' since she's calling it wellness, not power.

Yes, sex magic can be a part of witchcraft.  Celibacy can be a part of witchcraft.  Neither is necessarily a part of witchcraft. 

That's it for today.  More tomorrow.  Probably.

Frondly, Fern

Thursday, July 30, 2020

Witchy Wellness, more BS More ... typing.

Blessings Darlings!

We're at least half way done with the meme, let's keep going on kicking it to the curb!

Massage:  I adore massages.  I don't see them as witchy, or critical for wellness.  And they cost serious money.  Wellness should never be something that only the well-off can get.

Mindfulness:  Having focus is a good thing.  Depending on what you're focusing on.  It's not really much different than her later item, meditation.  

Aromatherapy:  Yes, scents trigger all sorts of things.  Some of them trigger the asthma of my husband and son.   Using them in witchcraft can be great.  Being aware (back to mindfulness) of their impact on your is a good thing.  Personally, I'm more into open windows than adding chemicals to what I breath.  Everyone's mileage varies.

Oh, dear.  #13 is self care.  Baby doll - everything about Wellness is Self Care.  Why the fuck is there a line item for it?  I mean, duh.  Not a damn thing witchy here.

And now to lump a whole lot of things together.  Recharge, Reflection, mental health day, retreat - all different words for pretty much the exact same thing.  You want to pretend that they are witchy and not human?  Whatever.

Enough for today.  Probably more tomorrow.

Frondly, Fern

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

General catching up

Blessings Darlings!

On top of the attention that I've been giving that latest 'list', life has been busy around here.  A lot of extra money came IN for a change, instead of going OUT, which is always nice.    I've been spending lots of time dealing with the garden - I'm being buried in yellow crookneck squash, and the beans are coming in from the first planting.  The second planting is being eaten, probably by voles, so I'm going to have to vole-treat the garden again.  Bacterial wilt has hit the grey zucchini and the volunteer spaghetti squash.  The potatoes are about ready to be harvested.  The Swiss  Chard is now at the point where it can handle all our sandwich 'lettuce' needs, and maybe an occasional salad as well.  Tomatoes are still all green, tho, and I fear that they are all determinant and will all ripen at virtually the same time. 

I need to plant the fall crops of beets, radishes, turnips, and rutabagas.  But it's really hard clearing nasty weeds when it's so hot and humid, and too much of my useful time is spent watering the other veggies. 

At dusk and near midnight (after the nightly offerings) I sit outside as much as I can, discussing things with the various Spirits/Gods/ancestors/etc.  Great stuff, but the pollen I'm exposed to then along with the pollen from the garden work has been killing my eyes.  I might be driven to allergy eye drops, but washing my eyes every few hours seems to at least make it less bad.

I'm seeing odd stuff in the skies.  One was probably just a satellite reflecting sunlight.  The more unusual was a 'fleet' ... well, 6 ... planes, not in formation, but 'in a row' over a few minutes around 11:30 pm, all flying west or west/southwest.  That's not normal, especially now with less air traffic.  It's not like I'm living on a flight path in and out of O'Hare any more.  It's not a normal thing here - and as I said, I'm out there every night watching the skies now. 

Why am I watching the sky?  Because we're in the summer meteor time.  Not peak Perseids yet, but it's time to start watching for them.

Life  in these unusual times keeps going on.  Statistics on cases and deaths from covid 19 are no longer being published by the CDC, and no one trusts where the data is now going to.  States are admitting to new highs in cases and deaths, but HHS (does it stand for the dept of Health and Human Services or Happy Horse Shit?) claims that both are not increasing.  Okay, Boomer.

Most jobs lost due to Coronavirus shut downs are not coming back.  This is the last week when unemployment is being supplemented with Coronavirus stimulus money of $600 a week.  That's been making a huge difference in my financial life, since I only get $170 a week from unemployment.  Since the Chubby Hubby is over 70, he's getting social security retirement money, but that doesn't pay all our bills.  With the 'regular' unemployment, there will be a gap between income and what we have to spend each month.  We have the savings to cover that for rather a while at this time, fortunately.  I really do NOT want to work again until it's actually safe to do so.  That isn't going to happen for ... quite a while, I fear.  I'm sure we don't have that much money saved.

There are still protests daily over the police killings.  The police have responded by calls for them to stop being abusive by increasing their abuse of citizens.  And teaming up with Federal hired hands to dole out even more toxic gasses and 'non lethal' weaponry.  It's a shit show.  Mayors who aren't reforming their police force complaining that the Feds are attacking protesters ... when the feds are doing exactly the same things that their own police have been doing. 

While all this is going on, and I'm writing e-mails and calling congresscritters, I'm still sitting in my back yard, watching the skies.  It's totally surreal.  Wars and rumors of wars, but not where I am.  Mind you, the next city over, Martinsburg WV, has had monthly protests for YEARS now, over the police shooting of a schizophrenic black man there.  So it's not FAR away from me.  Links to the story below - the courts have finally done a little (the ending of qualified immunity is BIG).  But it took over 7 years of protests to get this far.  

I wish I felt that things would improve soon.  That a safe and effective immunization would be found fast for the pandemic.  That institutionalized racism would be dealt with.  That the police would be reformed and get the KKK out of their ranks.  That we'd get a sane and honorable president.  That people would get science savvy and not be dickheads.  I just don't see an end to this shit show.

Welp. that's it for now.

Frondly, Fern

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Witchy wellness bullshit, part 5

Blessings darlings!

I'm going to lump a lot of stuff together from that meme today.  Because all the exercise things - stretching, cardio, sun salutation, and moon salutation fall under 'exercise' and the last two are 'exercise plus mindfulness', mindfulness being yet another bullet point.

Yes, exercise is good.  Why she doesn't have weight training on here is a mystery, since it's also fundamental to wellness.  But there is nothing witchy about exercise.  Our muscles are set up on a 'use it or lose it' basis.  So ... use it.

But ... her FB groups and her web site talk about how bad appropriation is, and here she is appropriating yoga from the Hindu religion when she wants folks to do the sun salutation.  The moon salutation is a modern 'plastic shaman' addition to the western appropriation of yoga.  Appropriation once removed, shall we say.

Let's have a digression!  I've heard that while taking yoga is appropriation from the Hindu religion ... that working with chakras is different - that chakras are from Indian Medicine, not the Hindu Religion.  I don't know enough about the roots of working with chakras to know if this is the case or not.  Someday I might look into it.  Or maybe one of you will.  Who knows?

Next up is ... #8 massage.  Yes.  Massage.  I don't know why.  I don't know what makes this necessary for wellness or for witchery.  I call full bullshit.   We're going to combine this with #24, 'love your body'.  You don't need to love yourself/your body/your mind/etc for wellness.  You can view yourself totally as a machine, to be kept in good working shape, and that model works extremely well for wellness, too.  Better in some cases, because you KNOW you're not going to be able to run a car when it's out of oil or gas.  

Which brings us to #9 Fruits and Vegetables and #22 Greens.  IMO - greens ARE part of the vegetables group.  But ... whatever.  Apparently she feels she should be eating more of them.   Certainly it seems that most folks 'should' be eating 5 half cup servings of them a day.   Again, physical wellness, not WITCHY wellness.

We're about half way done!  Yay!  More tomorrow, Gods willing and if the creek don't rise.

Frondly, Fern

Monday, July 27, 2020

Witchy Wellness part 4

Blessings Darlings!

Welcome to day four of trashing that '31 days of witchy wellness' meme!  And ... having gotten into the FB group for the person this comes from - she seems to want folks to purify daily.  Which fits into why she has zero shielding or warding on her list.  TOTALLY not my approach.  I prevent, rather than say 'get sick, then heal'.  Because fuck THAT.

Today we'll start with two different line items, "Morning Routine" and "Evening Routine".  I am ALL FOR routines.  The less decisions you have to make each day, the better for most folks.  Especially those of us with executive dysfunction. BUT ...

This is another case of 'dividing this into 31 days is stupid'.  The only two things she's had you do is 'Commit to doing' and 'purify'.  Are you doing that stuff daily?  I mean, I suppose she could have you doing it daily.  Is she now saying 'do them every morning'?  If so - why wait till day 3 to say that, and why give it a full day when you have at most 2 line items?

#4 on the list is 'Hydrate'.   Probably a fine idea.  Not a witchy idea at all, mind you.  I'm kinda experienced at starting and stopping this one.  It's not a 1 day thing.  It's a lot of work to get in the habit of drinking .  It will take between 3 and 6 weeks to get this one down to a habit.  Even if part of your morning routine is to chug a pint or two of water upon depending on your job ... both extra trips and extra time away from your 'work' might be issues.  

#5 is "Sacred Space".  I'll have to make some guesses about what she means here.   Maybe it's create a permanent area in your house for you to do your magic/meditate/ etc in.  Maybe it's making your whole house a sacred space.  Maybe it's declaring yourself/you body as sacred. I have no idea.  Hell, I don't even know what she means by 'sacred'.  But the dictionary definition of sacred - 'holy' - isn't necessarily a part of witchcraft.  Witchcraft is a skill set, just like knitting, which can be done by folks of any, all, or NO religion.  Whatever.

Are you supposed to do 'sacred space' once, or daily?  No clue.  I mean - I assume that your morning/evening routines are supposed to be daily - is everything on this list daily?  Unless you are creating AND destroying sacred space every day, you don't need to do it daily.  Why would you have to?  I suppose it COULD be 'see everything you run into as sacred' ... but 'mindfulness' is a different day, so that seems unlikely.

That's it for now.

Frondly, Fern

Sunday, July 26, 2020

"Witchy Wellness" part 3

Blessings, Darlings!

So, still looking at the witchy wellness list I posted the last two days, still ripping it to shreds.

Second on the list is "Purification".  What the ever loving fuck?  What type of bullshit is this?  No actual 'wellness' list would EVER have 'purification' on the list.  First - you have a liver.  Second, you have kidneys. Those organs handle all the physical purification you need.  No fasting, no 'cleansing tea', no coffee enemas, nothing else needed.

If you have liver or kidney disease, by all means get real treatment for those problems - but 'purification' isn't the treatment.  If you're drinking so much that you are damaging your liver, stop that.  Got hepatitis?  Get treatment if you can afford it (some of that treatment is really pricy).  Eat the diet your doctor gave you for kidney disease.  Take your blood pressure meds.  DO . NOT . 'PURIFY'.

And if she's talking about some 'spiritual purification' ... that's bullshit, too, unless you're doing some Christian stuff.  For Pagans, about the only thing that going to make you 'impure' is if you recently killed some of your relatives.  Did you do that?  No, not likely. 

Just Say No.

Frondly, Fern

Saturday, July 25, 2020

"Witchy Wellness", part 2

Blessings, Darlings!

So, to remind you of the meme that is spawning my posts right now, here it is:

"Fitness" is generally seen as having 3 components - physical, mental, and spiritual.  "Witchy Fitness" at MOST would be spiritual, assuming that you see witchcraft as a spiritual path and not a skill set.  I see it as a skill set, so ... yeah.  Ain't nothing 'witchy wellness' at all IMO.

Now onward to the individual steps/days!


I'm guessing that she means 'send your intention out into the universe'.  Maybe.  Maybe she means 'set formal goals'.  But since the rest of this is "These are MY goals, work on THEM" ... this is kind of foolish.  Never commit to following someone else's goals.  Not as a person, CERTAINLY not as a witch.

If you want to set your 'intent' for 'wellness' ... you need to take more than one day.  You will need to figure out all aspects of wellness you want to work on, then decide on a FEW as your priorities.  Then look at what you want You will need to figure out how long it will take to do those steps.   You will want to break it down into your OWN damn goals and dates for achievement.  You WILL probably know at least one or two things you want to do already.  Like - most folks want to do daily or twice daily meditation, and don't do it.  You certainly can start doing this  while deciding on the rest of your goals. 

Now, if you were looking for 'witchy' wellness, some of the possibilities for goals (and this is NOT by any means an exhaustive list) would be 'identify things you'd like to do in your daily practice,' 'Identify things you want to do at least weekly,'  'Identify things you want to do at least once a month', "attend at least one local ritual/event" "select some spirit/entity/demon/angel/God to build a relationship with so I can work with them," "Build that relationship," "Do shadow work" "improve the success of my magic," "get so good at grounding that you could do it in a busy airport/trainstation/where ever/whenever in one breath," "get really good at casting a circle," "memorize a top 40 list of chants/invocations/songs," "learn to shield," "Ward your house," "Clean and keep clean your house,"  followed by 'incorporate those things, one or more at a time, into your practice - but not all at once. Or even in one month. Probably not even in one year'. 

And look at these things realistically.  Do you have 3 children under 5 years old?  Most folks in that situation aren't going to get a whole lots of 'wellness' - or other goals - accomplished.  What's your work schedule like?  What's your mental health like?  Don't set yourself up for failure by  being unrealistic. 

You're making lifestyle changes here for most of these goals.  You want them to stick.  You need to both focus and let them take root.  I have ONE magical goal for this year - to improve the return on my magic.  To do this, I'm taking ONE course, and doing the damn work.  Whether the Coronavirus shut downs have helped or hurt me in this is debatable, but I'm SO glad I didn't pick more than this.  Yes, doing this includes doing a lot of different smaller tasks.  That's true for all goals.  I mean, you can see that in the list of crap in that meme.  Three of the things are variations on 'put the right things in your body' - hydration, fruits and vegetables, and greens.  A full 8 of them are mental health related. 

At any rate - pick a couple of goals, and write them down/send them to the universe/burn them/whatever.  Take some real time and give it some real thought.

Frondly, Fern

Friday, July 24, 2020

Bullshit wrapped in unrealistic aims dipped in 'witch talk' and sprinkled with glitter

Blessings Darlings!

I should post about coronavirus, and about the mercenaries grabbing folks off the streets in Portland (mercs provided by Betsy Devos' brother!), and all that.  But, no.  I ran into stupid today, and I'm going to be posting a full series of posts on this.  Because there is just SO FUCKING MUCH material in it to cover.

Now, there has been a whole lot of stupid around late, as we all know.  Folks saying that masks cause carbon dioxide levels in the body to rise, or that they don't stop spread of disease because 'pants don't stop farts', the hexing of the Fae, etc.  But now I want to introduce you to this here post/meme thing I 'met' today, that people are sharing in FB Witch/Pagan groups, a 'dump it in the group as a goal/challenge for all!' thing.

It's bullshit wrapped in unrealistic aims dipped in 'witch talk' and sprinkled with glitter.
I hardly know where to begin in my analysis of it.  But since I actually AM, by both education and work history, a Health Educator, I'll have at it.
I'm going to start with "wellness as a 31 day challenge".  Wellness is "an active process of making choices toward a healthy and fulfilling life."  A process is not something for a challenge, 31 days or no.  You don't put a life-long process in place in one month.  You set smaller goals along the way.  Those goals are going to be measurable.  They are going to be no more than, say, 3 major changes at a time.  Trying to do 'everything' in a month is a set up for failure.  

I took a little trip to the web site and such of the person who created this meme.  While this is being presented as 'what everyone should do', this is in fact what SHE wanted to do (this originated several years ago, apparently).  She took her time, decided on what she thought SHE should work on ... and promptly challenged everyone to do the same thing.  I did a cursatory check of the Instagram page she was supposed to be running this on, and found no real info - but I don't have Instagram, so only saw about half of the things shared to this part of her account.  I HAVE asked to be let in her FB group, because I want to know how much of this challenge is still a part of her life.  
In wellness, one size does NOT fit all.  Hell, no where in life does one size actually fit all.  

Second ... what the fuck about this is 'witchy'? Did I miss invoking a demon to do this shit for you?  Eating your veggies, and drinking water is NOT 'witchy'.  It's human.  It addresses biological needs of bodies.  Doing stretches are things that even cats and dogs do.  It's not part of their spiritual schtick.  It's not even part of their religious schtick.

Tomorrow - if I don't get drawn into politics or coronavirus instead - I'll start on the items on that there list.  There are important 'wellness' things missing.  And some of them are the same thing, divided ... probably to get up to 31, so it could be one a day for a 31 day month. 

Thursday, July 23, 2020


Blessings Darlings!

I haven't planted much stuff this year.  Like, only 2 summer squash plants, one of which is already dead of bacterial wilt.  Less then 1/2 the amount of green beans I usually plant.  I only put in two tomato plants, but a lot of others volunteered and I'm only letting 3 of them grow.

But not only do I still have too many summer squashes (I have NEVER had a yellow crook neck squash produce like this before) but the green beans have gone SNEAKY.  I thought I only had 'new born kitten' sized beans.  Instead, they were hiding some fully ready ones.  A half pound of fully ready ones.  I'm shocked.  And awed.  And overwhelmed at the return in my garden already this year.  Obviously the garden likes that I'm using cow manure to build it up. 

Which is a good thing, given that my old job at the old place probably isn't coming back. 

Rain is staying north of us, at least so far, today. So I removed a lot of Johnson grass.  And I transplanted in more Swiss Chard, finally, and watered it myself to make sure it was cared for.  It's steamy and windy out, but that doesn't mean that the rain will come to visit today.  All the lightning is up at Hagerstown.  UPDATE: We got a sprinkle of rain, not enough to count for rain ... but we got a wonderful rainbow!

Spent most of the last light pulling zoysa grass from the garden, so I can transplant the cucs in tomorrow, Gods willing and if the creek don't rise.

Frondly, Fern

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Contemplating candles.

Blessings Darlings!

Since I'm currently doing one daily offering shortly before midnight each night, and it's the 'big formal one' of the day, one of the things I'm offering is the light from a candle.  I don't want the candle to burn TOO long, and I do this offering outside, so I don't want the wind to blow it out on windy nights.  Therefore, I use Hanuka candles, bought in bulk at the grocery store on half price after Hanuka.  44 candles in a box, assorted colors, burn at least half an hour.

But that wind thing is still an issue, even with pretty protector I put over the candle.  The problem is that the candle holder raises the candle too high for good protection.  When I dare to go into stores again I will likely look for a taller one ... or shorter candle holder ...

I COULD maybe get away with using a 7 day candle for this - those jarred candles are 'recessed' enough in the jar that they might not be blown out by the wind.  But ... I'm doing this outside.  I'd light it, let the offering burn for a while, then put it out again.  Sounds fine, until you realized that this is summer, and bugs are attracted to flames.  The hot liquid wax would end up with the bodies of the dead bugs.  NOT the offering I want to give. Maybe I'll be able to use them in winter. 

Update - I did some spelunking in the Conjure Cabinet, and found a lower candle holder, AND it allows the protector thing in it as well.

I was going to make crepes for dinner tonight, filling them with the leftover chicken and the wild greens (lambs quarters and spiny hogweed) I harvested yesterday.  I made the filling, which is wonderful.  But making the actual crepes seemed like work, so instead we're having it over egg noodles.  Everyone is happy this way, too.

Yesterday we got a little rain.  Under 1/4 inch, but with a glorious rainbow.  Suz, of course, filmed the rainbow and I didn't.  Today no rainbow, but a lot more rain.  With lots of thunder and lightning.  I won't have to water the garden for ... maybe two days.  The whole landscape just went 'Ahhhhhhh'.   It's a wonder filled thing.

Frondly, Fern

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Lots of gardening today.

Blessings Darlings!

I got out to the garden early (for me), did an hour and a half of work before it even hit 90 degrees!  I harvested a lot of weeds for dinner tomorrow, then dug beds for the last planting of beans, filled the trenches with a manure/soil mix, and planted the beans.  Now, hours later, we're getting a little blessed rain.  Very little rain, but at least some. 

I discovered that the inside of Mt. Manure (where Chris dumped the manure in the garden) is really wet, while the outside is dried hard as a rock. I'll deal with that some other time.  Like, sometime this fall.

As a result of the earlier harvesting, I've been spending much of the day removing leaves from stems.  Tedious stuff.  But the greens make such good crepes! 

Frondly, Fern

Monday, July 20, 2020

It's adorable.

Blessings Darlings!

It's 10:50 am, and 94 degrees.  Rah.

I've been as busy as I could be in this heat and humidity.  Garden, housework, having folks block me on FaceBook, the usual. 

Altho' no one has asked, here's my view of the 'witches on TikTok are cursing the Fae, and the Moon, and the Sun" thing.  And my view is "Whatever".  It has the same vibe as that thing the 4th of July - "Antifa is going to Gettysburg to desecrate the cemetery!"  The vibe is 'some one is trolling for reaction." 

If some witches try it - shrug.  All beginners try to do stuff they can't pull off.  That's normal.

Maybe I'll do a blog on 'how to appease beings you've pissed the fuck off' sometime soon.  Not just because of that, but because ... anyone doing magic is more 'visible' to the spirits, and more likely to step over a line with one or more of them, AND GET NOTICED doing it.  It's nice to know what to do in such cases. 

But this WitchTok stuff is ... kinda like putting on masks and crashing a party in Verona, given by a family your family is feuding with.  Normal white kid stuff.  The police will drive them home, no charges filed. 

Frondly, Fern

Sunday, July 19, 2020


Blessings Darlings!

The heat advisory continues ... It's 97 degrees at noon, feels like 112.  Spawn weeded the bushes today, to stay in the shade. 

I harvested sage, oregano, spearmint, and thyme.  Want to water the mugwort before I harvest that.  The new rosemary is too small to do a real harvest of, as are the struggling parsley plants.  Basil has been harvested every week, to make sure it doesn't go to seed.  I have potted basil that I'm letting go to seed.  They have all been rinsed clean and are spread out on cardboard to dry.  The dining room smells amazing.

Whole chicken for dinner tonight.  Might spatchcock it, will use a red rub on it.  Will certainly make it outside on a grill rather than heating the house.  I want to serve squash fritters with it, but a dark green veggie will look better.  Especially if I use corn as the starch.  Ended up with leftover rice as the starch, and frozen green beans, since my green beans are probably still 2 weeks away.

That, and other housework, and family stuff, is it.

Frondly, Fern

Saturday, July 18, 2020

John Lewis and Rev. Vivian both dead.

Blessings Darlings!

Not only did I sleep most of yesterday, I slept all night just fine.  My last dream was a successful battle, with my co-warriors splitting up the silver.

I am really being buried in yellow crookneck squash.  There's a lot of tempura and ?croodles? in my future.  But it is SO DRY.  Second haying here is going to be sparse. I'm watering the garden almost daily, in small part because the Spawn can't get weeds out of the dry clay if I don't.  And II have no idea what type of fruit of veggies the volunteer in the squash family is.  It's not a crookneck.  It's not a cucumber.  It could be a muskmelon or honeydew, since we grew them last year, or a cross between them.  Or a spaghetti squash.  Time will tell, I guess. 

John Lewis and Rev. Vivian both died in the last 24 hours.  Sadness.

75000 daily new cases of Covid 19, and the Trump admin is insisting on opening schools.

Tempura was great.  But. oh, what a mess!  Guess I'll spent all my time between now and end of day offerings cleaning the kitchen.  SO WORTH IT.

Frondly, Fern

Friday, July 17, 2020

Tacos and Tempura and Summer Temperatures.

Blessings Darlings!

Sluggish today.  Just want to drink coffee and read.  But not outside, where it already feels like 102 degrees before noon.

Garden has been watered, a few hours ago.  Weeding has taken place, by the Spawn.  That's one of his daily jobs.  I've not worked on dishes or laundry yet.  Dinner will be tacos, so that's easy enough, but might need a tomato or two, I think we're low on fresh tomatoes, since I planted late and we're not getting them from the garden yet.  Tomorrow night we're having a Tempura Extravaganza, featuring the squash, the jumbo shrimp, and a few other veggies from the store.  Maybe ... turnips?  I wonder how they'd be as tempura?

Damn!  A bee just flew from the back yard over the house ... looking as big as a military transport plane. 

I ended up NOT drinking more coffee, but did try to read and thus ended up asleep for about 3 hours in the afternoon.  I got all my daily chores done, just no exercise or reading ... yet.  I might get some in. I might not.  It's okay. 

Frondly, Fern

Thursday, July 16, 2020

Living the Vida Boring

Blessings Darlings!

Welp, the grey squash, which I love, is very very very susceptible to bacterial wilt spread by squash bugs. The yellow crookneck squash is both a bit less attractive to squash bugs AND doesn't seem to give much of a care about bacterial wilt.  The one plant I put in is producing very heavily, too.  The volunteer squash (which I suspect is also  yellow crookneck) looks like it will also start producing in a week or so.  Some of the peppers are beginning to bloom, but I fear that the only ones that survived are the cayenne peppers.  They are useful, but ... I just used up the last of the sweet peppers that I froze from last year, and would like to freeze a batch of THEM.  I need to check to see if I have more of them that I dried still available.

Humidity is not my friend today. 

I don't feel like I have much to blog right now.  Not that most of my blogs are particularly wonderful, but blogging how life goes on during relatively awful times is ... pretty mundane and boring itself.  And I'm not blogging about things that are HEADLINES and GOING ON IN MY YARD.  We have small Black Lives Matter protests in our area, and because I'm isolating I don't go to most of them. I don't go to the weekly Rockwool protests.  I'm not about to list groups/amounts/times I give money, or every single other 'good deed'/virtue signalling type thing.  I'm not going to bore you or me with the details on my little exercise program, or how I felt exercising this day, and whine about ... exercising.  Because I do that a lot in my life, and no one else should have THAT imposed on them.

So you get lists of what I got done, and details on the garden.  And some other nature notes about birds and fireflies. And squash bugs.

I can't see some future Ken Burns using this for some amazing documentary on the year 2020, or CoronaVirus: The Mini Series, and no one's going to look to an old white woman's blog for Black Lives Matter stuff. 

Welp, that's it for today.

Frondly. Fern

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Midnight Music?

Blessings Darlings! 

I forgot to blog yesterday! 

It WAS a busy day, with eyeglass stuff for the Chubby Hubby, appointment with nurse practitioner for me then I went to the hardware store and the pharmacy (which didn't have the drug I needed), and with doing all the usual stuff in the garden, cleaning, cooking, etc.

We will all survive the fact that I missed a day.

I've been hearing music in the middle of the night.  Hard rock, with an emphasis on electric guitars - I hear them, not any base.  It's soft, not very close ... but I hear it just as loud in the house with the windows closed as I do outside.  I have NOT NOT NOT gone wandering to seek the source of it.  Sure, most likely it's a human neighbor.  But ... sigh ... the Good Neighbors could have some hard rock interests.   It's not at all clear how they'd be powering electric guitars, of course.  What IS clear is that I am NOT following strange music in the middle of the night.

The hot weather, bugs, dry weather, and clay soil is doing a number on my newly planted and transplanted Swiss Chard.  I'm going to have to transplant more, and give all of it special attention.  I'm already giving the summer squash bug egg checks two times a day, I'll have to water and bug check the chard at the same times. 

Now, a lot of us are attending meetings via Zoom now, and have been watching/making podcasts for ... years.  Wouldn't you like transcripts?  You can get them, easily.  And free/cheap.  The Otter App does it.  I just whined about no transcripts for podcasts, and ... realized that we have this tool as part of our business.  I didn't PLAN on posting it here, but I'm about it.  We are not an affiliate of theirs, but I DO think that if a lot of folks get the paid version we get some gift.  That said, we use the free version and have never needed the paid version.
Here's the link :

A free account gives them 600 audio minutes per month. 

If they need a transcript of a video, they can upload the video file, and Otter will extract the audio from that.
If they need a transcript of audio, they need to upload an audio file:

Otter lets you import existing recordings in the following formats:

    audio: mp3, aac, wav, m4a, wma
    video: mp4, avi, mov, wmv, mpg

If they need more info, the Chubby Hubby can help.

 Damn, it's hot and humid today.  I should plant a new batch of green beans, but instead I'm hiding indoors with the air conditioning on.

We bought a little table top portable grill.  The guys have finally put it together.  We finally figured out how to light it.  It is now on the 15 minutes 'burn off toxic shit' stage.  I don't know if this has enough BTU power for my purposes. 
Update - it takes at least 4 minutes per side for yellow crook neck squash slices.
Now I have pans of chicken in it.  Because I didn't have time to marinade the chicken and I want them immersed in flavor.  Maybe tomorrow I'll throw drumsticks on = because I don't think I'll have to worry about burning them using direct heat.  Tonight is boneless chicken.

Tonight was also the first evening I heard the screams of the cicadas.  They were the musical accompaniment to the beginning of the firefly show, but they didn't  scream for very long.

Until tomorrow ...

Frondly, Fern

Monday, July 13, 2020

Experimental Dinner Meh

Blessings Darlings!

Garden?  Check
Healthy breakfast?  Check
Dinner decided on?  Check
Spawn out shopping? Check (it's Moolatte Monday at Dairy Queen.  Thus, he goes shopping on Mondays as well as Wednesdays)
Dishes caught up on? Check

The Meatball Sub Casserole for dinner was meh.  Fortunately, I only made a half batch.  The meatballs and sauce will be fine on spaghetti.

Frondly, Fern

Sunday, July 12, 2020

Morning in the Garden with Fern

Blessings Darlings!

It's a lovely cool sunny morning here today.  I've already been out mashing bug eggs and thinning the Swiss Chard.  No one told me that the Swiss Chard produced two plants for every seed!  Once the seeds I planted in pots are bigger, I'll add a lot of them to the garden bed of chard.  I'm also hoping to keep some going over the winter in a cold frame, for fresh winter greens.  Along with the sweet potato vines that will be going inside the house. 

My parsley isn't doing much of anything.  Just sort of maintaining it's 'barely beyond seedling' status.  That's frustrating.  The Mystery Squash has not started blooming yet.  Not even the male flowers.  Eventually it will become clear what it is.  This week is not that week.  The tomatoes are coming along, especially the larger volunteer plant.  I had to do more bondage on all of them yesterday.

Tomorrow, weather willing, I need to plant more green beans, and work on the sweet potato vines.  I'm beginning to suspect that the unknown squash is going to turn out to be a yellow crookneck, but that's just a guess based on the leaves.

Now that it's 3 in the afternoon, the day has turned cloudy and humid.  We might get rain.  Then again, we might not.  It's been totally spotty lately.
It is now pouring at the south end of the field, where they hayed the other day.  Nothing going on here yet.  Lots of wind, tho'.
Ah, now it's raining pretty well here.  And now it's done.  About 8 minutes of rain.

That's the Sunday that Was.

Frondly, Fern

Saturday, July 11, 2020

I put my back into today.

Blessings Darlings!

I'm more functional today than I was yesterday.  I suppose that isn't saying much.  But it's well before noon, I've gotten almost all my minimum level of exercise in, done dishes, and am about to hang laundry.  I've eaten enough to take my meds.  

We got an unexpected downpour last night.  Chubby Hubby was awake during it, but didn't notice it, tho' I talked with him about the local lightning hits.  He was surprised to find water in the basement this morning.  At least I don't have to water the garden today, and maybe there will be more fireflies tonight.  They've been scarce the last few nights.

Mashed a lot of squash bug eggs, and one squash bug.  Cut down a lot of crap growing on the garden fence line.  Did tomato bondage.  Removed the grew squash plant that was rapidly dying of bacterial wilt, will bag it later.

Hot and steamy out.  Want to cool off before thinning the swiss chard and clearing area for next green bean planting.

There certainly were more fireflies tonight. 

Worked a lot in the garden today.  Did a lot with weights.  My back is not thrilled.  I'm going to bed. Or to do dishes then go to bed.  And do evening offerings sometime before bed as well. 

Good night.

Frondly, Fern

Friday, July 10, 2020

Today I slept.

Y'all, I spent the day with allergies and asleep.  That's it.

Thursday, July 9, 2020

All Covid 19, all the time.

Blessings Darlings!

Dear Gods, the stupid on FB is bad.  And many of the stupid people are too stupid to be helped.  I've tried.

My state is one of the top states in rate of increase in COVID 19 cases.  Rah.  There are only 2 states where rates are falling - Vermont and some other one.  They keep learning more about covid 19's effect on the body, especially in strokes and other brain damage.  And yet the Trump administration is insisting on opening schools.  Yes, young children learn WAY better in classrooms.  Yes, kids in much of the country have little to no access to high speed internet to access online teaching.  I take issue with the idea that kids dying is better than them missing school.  And that teachers and other support staff dying is better, too.

We need to close everything for 4 weeks.  That's the only way to get ANY control on this.  Close the banks.  Stop foreclosures.  Have the Nat Guard deliver food. Stop rents/mortgages for that month. 

I need some sleep.

Frondly, Fern

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Waning moon Wednesday.

Blessings Darlings!

Oh, the moon last night rose as incredible shade of red.  It rose thru' clouds, yes.  It rose during a drought, yes.  It rose during a pandemic, yes. 
At least it still rose.

I'm one week back into daily offerings (the Jason Miller model for them, go read his stuff) and 5 - 6 days a week exercise.  My knees aren't any different (no increase of pain) from the exercise, and my upper arm tendonitis isn't giving me trouble, but I'm using VERY light weights for moves that would trigger the tendonitis.  Go me!

Spawn got the table top grill today - but it had been bashed sometime after leaving the factory.  He's returning it tomorrow, and ordering a non-dented one.

The landscapers didn't come and mow today.  Not that we need it, but this probably means that they'll come and mow tomorrow, so I can't hang laundry tomorrow, either. 

There was some family stuff today that took some of my time, but it's just ... stuff.  The grill was part of it.

Frondly, Fern

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Well, fuck, I guess I'm an adult.

Blessings Darlings!

I still don't want to do anything.  I'm still doing things.  Just ... slowly.  It doesn't help that one of today's chores is the weekly cleaning of the fridge, which I hate doing.  But since I AM doing it - I'm defrosting the dorm sized fridge, too.  It needs it.

Did the garden work, did the dishes (well, the sink is now full again since I dumped old stuff from the fridge), planned today's and tomorrow's meal, been finishing up the Walmart pick up order, been working out with weights ... basically, going thru' the stuff on my 'to do' list.  Inventoried our batteries, to see which size to order from Walmart.  Ordered a small, portable propane grill, because charcoal puts too much carbon and particulates in the air, but I want to be able to grill chicken and veggies outside so I don't heat the house.

Welp - I may FEEL like I'm moving in slow motion, but, wow, I'm getting a lot done.  I'm happy with the results.  Defrosting!  Vacuuming!  Clean fridge!  Great weight workout!  Maybe I'll get on the exercise bike!  Okay, I didn't get on the exercise bike. 

That's today's update.

Frondly, Fern

Monday, July 6, 2020

First pandemic Monday in July.

Blessings Darlings!

That sudden windiness at 7 pm was caused by pop-up thunderstorms in various parts of the larger area.  Alas, no rain where I am.  So by 8:30 am today I was out watering the garden again.  And checking for pest eggs. 

The Washington Post - The morning's most important stories, curated by Post editors.

Seven-day average case total in U.S. sets record for 27th straight day
Local officials issued dire warnings about the spread of infections, blaming outbreaks on early reopenings and saying the virus was rapidly outpacing containment efforts.
 Ain't we got fun?

I am SO INCREDIBLY PISSED that the US WASTED 3+ months of isolation ... hell, wasted then entire time from the first big warnings about Covid 19 at the end of December/early January until the foreseeable future.  We did half-assed attempts to ask people to isolate, no serious enforcement.  We decided that human lives were less important than money.  And now, no surprise to folks with actual brains, our ICU beds are full again.  Our death rate is HUGE, even with states like Florida refusing to release actual stats on Covid-related deaths.  In 11 more days it will be 4 full months since I've gone out without a mask on.  4 months since I went out for anything other than needed shopping and a few trips to large parks to take walks with my family.   And under our president - who denigrated mask wearing and closing businesses, refuses to put a plan together, has gagged the US experts on infectious diseases, and cut funding for COVID research - and his allies, while I kept myself/my family safe, we are no safer than we were before.  Oh!  As of midnight tonight, masks are mandatory here in WV.  3 1/2 months (at least) later than they should have been declared mandatory.  Wait - it's not a mandate.  It's not enforced.  It's only fucking 'strongly encouraged'.  This is some fucking bullshit.

Oh - and if/when they get a vax for this, they'll be happy if it's only 50% effective. And you can bet that means if it's 50% effective on young healthy folks, not on ... everyone. Cancer survivors with now compromised immune systems? Nope. Folks over 60? Nope. Diabetics? Nope. Folks with asthma? Nope. Lupus? Nope. Fibro? Nope. 

How dry is it? Dust devils swirling in the pasture dry.  This is why I water some things daily (seedlings and the heavy producing squashes.)  

Today is one of those 'hard' days for me.  Depressed, no energy.  But I made my 'to do' list, and am trying my best to work on it.  Paid rent. Paid health insurance.  Worked in garden.  Washed clothes, and hung them on clothes line.  Obviously working on blogging.  Working on exercising ... in small doses at a time.  Dishes are all caught up on.  
It's 96 degrees out, feels like 101 -  and that's not helping, tho' we have AC on set at 81 degrees.   All the cattle - all black angus cattle - are under the trees where it's shady.  Horses are out in the sun, kicking up dust as they walk.  But they look like they are heading in the general direction of some trees themselves.  Fleshy weeds have taken over the garden and pastures, purslane in the garden and spiny pigweed in the pastures.  I might go harvest and cook the leaves on the pigweed next week, and maybe the purslane tomorrow.  

The Spawn found reduced price whole chickens on sale when he went out today (wearing a mask).  I'll stick a can of beer up it's ass, liberally (of course) apply Memphis Rub to it, and throw it in the oven for dinner.  I'll put an insulated car reflector on the oven, too, to keep as much of the heat IN the oven and not radiating OUT of the oven.  It will still end up heating the house, of course, but at least I'll have tried to reduce that.  He had money, so I told him to get the biggest reduced one they had, so we could get the most meals out of one oven use.  I'll throw in baked potatoes for the rest of the week, too, tho' corn will be our starch.

Sheesh - maybe today would be less overwhelming if I didn't have to keep adding stuff to the 'to do' list.  I used the last of the home made laundry powder today, so making more of that is on the list now.

Frondly, Fern

Sunday, July 5, 2020

May tonight be quieter than last night was.

Blessings Darlings!

Dang, there was a lot of fire works action by individuals last night.  For HOURS, like from 8 pm till midnight or beyond.  It's been going on for two weeks now, with last night being the biggest night and June 20 - the celebration of West Virginia statehood - the second biggest.  But there were fireworks every day between the two.  I don't expect that they will come to an almost complete end for another week or so.  Since all the 'official' fireworks displays in the area were cancelled due to Coronavirus, and folks are isolating and bored, I guess it's to be expected.  OTOH, they had to interact with people to buy the fireworks.  As for me, I'd rather watch the fireflies and maybe see a meteor.  But since last night was the full moon (and a lunar eclipse, other the other side of the globe), it wouldn't have been a good night for seeing meteors.

Trump, of course, had fireworks and rallies both of the last two nights.  The first on Native American land (what is now called Mt. Rushmore) and last night in DC.  No masks or distancing Friday night.  Little last night.  Those folks are certainly free to risk their own lives, but they are SO likely to infect others, and likely to max out hospital ICU beds and ventilators.  That bothers me greatly.

We of course continue to self-quarantine as much as possible.  Masks when in public.  Only going in public once or twice a week, for shopping and occasionally for walks in parks and such.  We're spending as little money as possible, because at the end of this month the 'coronavirus stimulus' money added to unemployment ends, and my unemployment checks don't cover our bills.  This is why garden production matters so much, and finding ways to enjoy eating what's easy to grow lots of matters.  Turnips are easy to grow.  They are NOT everybody's favorite to eat.  Tomatoes are so easy to grow that we always have too many of them.  Green beans, again, easy to grow.  Last year we had too many of them, and I couldn't keep up with harvesting them.  Bad combination.  At least the tomatoes I could give to folks at work.  I'm growing half the summer squash and half the tomatoes I grew last year, and diversifying the garden more.  I've added potatoes, dry beans, chard, beets, turnips, radishes. garlic.  Have had NO luck with lettuce and spinach. Have replaced spinach with wild lambsquarters at some meals.
And, yes, I did my part of the garden work for today already - watered, and mashed bugs/bug eggs/pulled thorny hogweed.  Spawn has not gone out and weeded anything yet.  It's now 12:20, it's 93 degrees, and it feels like it's 103 degrees. 
BTW - since Wednesday I harvested 3 grey squash.  Three more will be ready for this coming Wednesday.  I harvested 7 turnips this week, and used the 3 biggest ones.  So I still have 4 to use, and a bunch more in the garden still. 

Oh, wow - 7:00 pm, and the wind just picked way the heck up.  Temperaturee\ currently 95. 

I have dinner to make and things to do. Laters!

Frondly, Fern

Saturday, July 4, 2020

New use for neeps.

Blessings Darlings!

Another summer day - so watering and squash bug smashing is done by 9:45 am. Planted chard in containers.  Left water our for pollinators.  Diced veggies and chicken for stir fry.  Mashed more bugs.  No energy, just wanted to stay in bed or on the couch all day.

Experimental stir fry for dinner tonight - used turnips in the stir fry, because turnips (no turnip greens, the bugs ate them) and zucchini is what the garden is giving us right now.  It was okay, a little odd, but nothing too far off.

Frondly, Fern

Friday, July 3, 2020

F'ing Reflux

Blessings Darlings!

Oh, the humdity and heat were BAD last night when I did the night offerings. 
Then during my sleep I had Revenge of the Fried Chicken, eaten too late and too much - horribly reflux at 5 am. 

Today would have been my mother's 101st birthday.  No coincidentally, it would have been her twin brother's birthday, too.  My moon child mother was not ... um ... a good match for her Sagittarius daughter.  I was never willing to 'suffer to be beautiful', nor to hurt enough to be entitled to love.
And my cousins assure me that she was 'the good parent' in the family.

Harvested 7 turnips and one zuc today.  Will do stir fry for dinner tomorrow featuring the zucs and some cabbage and carrots.  Will roast the turnips with some other roots tomorrow, and use for all sorts of things.

I slept much of today, having lost a bunch of sleep last night.

That's it.

Frondly, Fern

Thursday, July 2, 2020

Shopping during Coronavirus.

Blessings darlings!

Mostly typical day of housework and garden work.  With more first world problems about Walmart pick up time, Walmart missing most of the items I wanted, and Aldi's having computer problems so I couldn't get any produce OR biscuits there.  At least I got the rest of the stuff for plumbing repairs, even if not any bananas.

The governor of this state is dicking around about requiring masks.  Fiddling while the country burns.  HE doesn't need one, of course - his nose is so far up Trump's ass that a mask would be useless.
I didn't get the box of 50 masks I ordered from Walmart, of course.  The Spawn DID find a package of 10 on his shopping trip, so that's a happy thing.  But I'm going to need to go use a magnifying glass to see what company made/labeled these.  Found!  They're legit!  Yay!
I'm getting at least 5 uses out of each 'disposable' mask  by baking them for 30 minutes in a low {about 170 F} oven for 30 minutes between uses, so we're not going thru' a ton of them.  The most I've even had to bake in one week was 5.  But they get just DIRTY, and are paper, so can't be 'washed' as such.  Oh, yes, I have 3 cloth masks that can be washed, but need a filter added inside them to get them most effective.  They are good for days that aren't all that warm. 

I must go do nightly offerings.  Until tomorrow, Gods willing and if the creek don't rise.

Frondly, Fern

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

July 1 Land Base Update

Blessings Darlings!

What's up in your landbase?  We are awfully dry here.  I need to water the garden every few days, and the mowed grass on lawns is clearly burned.  Yesterday the corn leaves were VERY curled, a sign of water stress.  We did get some rain fall overnight, but we need over a half inch a week for happy grass and crops.  What we got was 0.03 inches. The cattle are kicking up less dust, but that's about it.

Grass pollen is very high, as well as the UV index.  Temperature isn't bad, dew point isn't bad - but we're supposed to hit 97 later this week.  The invasive mimosa trees are blooming, the chickory is blooming. 

Spent lots of time weeding the garden today.  And some time on tomato bondage.  Can't wash clothes and hang them on the line, since this is the day the lawn gets mowed.  Also started more grey squash and cucumber seeds.

Going to use the squash I harvested yesterday in a stir fry tonight - not yet sure if I'll add chicken or pork to it.  Ooops - change of plans.  Carnitas with the left over pork from the other night.  Spawn is cooking.

Walmart cancelled my grocery pick up today.  I was worried that they did it due to maybe folks being out with Covid 19, but it was FAR more typical than that - a car accident took out power.  I don't know if anyone was hurt, tho.  I'm rescheduled for tomorrow afternoon. 

US Corona virus deaths are over 130,000.  With many, MANY undercounted by local/state governments who are hiding things.  "Pneumonia" deaths, not classified as Coronavirus, are up.  Epidemiologists are going to have to look at the 'number of excess deaths' over the average to get the real figures.

I'm tired.  This is it for today.

Frondly, Fern