Blog Post 170 – A Little Gift

Hi everyone!

I hope you’ve all had a festive holiday season and are looking forward to a fantastic 2013! I’m working hard on a number of projects at the moment, including new posts for the blog, getting new show topics and guests lined up, starting a New World Witchery contest, finishing a school project and an assignment for an academic journal, finding PhD programs, continuing work on any of the books I’ve got in the works (and looking for publishers for those books), planning out some second-half-of-the-year classes for my local magical group, keeping up with my reading list, learning a couple new languages (and refreshing my Spanish, too). Not to mention working a day job, being a father to two brilliant kids, and a husband to a very patient and very loving wife.

All of which is to say that life is very busy, but not so busy that I don’t decide to take on MORE crazy projects! (As a Gemini, having too many irons in the fire is par for the course, apparently). During the latter part of last year, I was listening to a conversation between Fire Lyte and Velma Nightshade on their joint podcast about the lack of witchy apps out there, and specifically how there isn’t anything that can integrate with their calendars like an almanac app. Well, I’m not a programmer of any kind, but I do know how to go through and use Outlook to generate iCal files, so I started working on something to fill that need. And here it is!

A Witch’s Calendar – iCal version for 2013 (Q1).

The calendar includes witchy holidays with lore, links, recipes, etc. I’ve included a number of the days I personally observe, and the full and new moons. Many of the links will bring you to the New World Witchery site for posts on the topics highlighted in the calendar alert, and some will send you to book recommendations, other sites with related lore and/or products, and so forth. For example, the calendar entry on New Year’s Day (which is when the whole thing starts…sorry for the delay in releasing it) includes a link to our entry on that day’s practices, a link to Sarah Lawless’ post on Hogmany, and a click-through to Lucky Mojo’s Chinese Wash, so you can start your year with a clean and lucky house.

It’s in a zip file, so please make sure that you can open those and that you know how to add an iCal file to your favorite calendar (a quick Google search will probably help you figure out how to do that).

I should point out a few caveats:

  • This is only for the first quarter of 2013. I’ll be working on getting other quarters up as soon as I can, but I wanted to get at least the first three months out there.
  • There may be one or two of these dates that have an entry with no links, or which are blank in some way. I’ll be correcting those in future versions.
  • It’s totally free and you can share it as much as you like, but please let folks know where you found it.

It’s sort of a New Year’s/Twelfth Night gift to y’all for being so spectacular, so I hope it’s useful to some folks out there. If someone out there is more technically gifted than I am and wants to undertake any improvements that integrate with this calendar, I’m a-okay with that. Just send me an email and let me know! And if you find this useful and all that, we’d certainly welcome donations to help support future work.

Here’s wishing you a very happy New Year! Thanks for all you’ve done for the show, and for being a spectacular audience!


Blog Post 163 – New World Witchery Cartulary No. 1

Hi all!

Today I thought I’d devote a post to, well, other posts. I’m frequently reading, communicating with, or learning from other folk magicians, scholars, storytellers, and various members of the folkloric community. While much of what you find here on New World Witchery focuses on research into history, I don’t want to ever lose sight of the vibrancy and currency of many expressions of folk spirituality and magical living which surround us today. We live in an enchanted world, or at least I like to think so, and I want to share the things that are enchanting me from time to time.

So I’m going to try to start periodically posting brief annotated link rolls (the “cartulary” in this post’s title) which might be of interest to readers of this site. Some will be as simple as podcast recommendations or interesting fiction I’ve come across, and others will be more academic in nature, focused on recent research or discoveries in folklore, fairy tales, or magic in general.  And some may simply have a nice, witchy feel to them. So let’s get started!

I only recently found out that Denise Alvarado and her publishing group put out a neat little almanac last spring called The Hoodoo Almanac, which includes bits of folk magic, lunar astrology, and other almanac-y things. I don’t know if they’ll do one for 2013 or not, but here’s hoping! Alvarado and several other root workers have also started a program for learning folk magic which involves taking several online courses and apprenticing with a live root worker in your area, called Crossroads University. This seems like a great way to learn this particular branch of folk magic. Similar courses can be taken through Lucky Mojo and Starr Casas (a very knowledgeable rootworker and friend to us here at NWW).

Speaking of books and learning, I recently read a review in the Journal of American Folklore (JAF) for a 2006 book on the infamous Pied Piper of Hamelin. The Pied Piper: A Handbook, by Wolfgang Mieder, looks like exactly the kind of in-depth, thorough investigation of the story behind the fairy tale that I love. This is the sort of book I can sink into and lose a few months of my life, so it’s already on my holiday wish list, and the JAF review gave it glowing praise as well.

I’ve very recently been made aware of the delightful blog Roman and Minnie’s Satanic Cocktail Hour, which assumes the personas of two characters from Rosemary’s Baby, then proceeds to imagine their lifestyle as hip 70s witches and pseudo-Satanists. There’s a schlock value to the site, and it’s definitely not safe for work (lots of naked folks), but they also have neat little gems of folklore occasionally, as with their most recent post on Ozark witchcraft from a Time magazine story in the 1939. Special thanks to

Arrowclaire, over at her lovely blog Wandering Arrow, always puts up interesting posts. She had one on dealing with death omens recently that I greatly appreciated, because it puts into perspective the idea of living an omen-driven life without necessarily becoming fearful or overly superstitious.

Rue of Rue & Hyssop had a beautiful post welcoming the autumnal season in. Check out the rather gorgeous PDF (but high-gloss) Pagan Living Magazine in her sidebar, too!

Speaking of great and stunning periodicals, the absolutely amazing Hex Magazine: Old Ways for a New Day is very worthy of your time. It focuses very heavily on Northern European and Teutonic folkways, but also includes a good bit of New World lore, too.

To get you in the mood for a spooky October, go take a peek at the great post Peter from New England Folklore has done on “Kidnapped Witches in Plymouth.” (Storytelling is an October tradition at NWW, so this should get you ready for next month nicely).

That’s my cartulary for today! Happy reading, everyone!


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