Categories
Literary Arts

Upcoming Boston Austen Book Club Titles

The dates for the Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 are still To Be Determined, but the titles are set. We will meet again on Jane’s birthday. This is a special celebration because the BABC turns FIVE this year!

Check back here or on the BABC Facebook page for event details.

Upcoming Events – Some Exact Dates Are TBD

  • Fall 2022 (upcoming) – Lady Susan, any edition – mid Nov; date TBD
  • Winter 2022 (upcoming) – Jane Austen Birthday Bash, Dec 16 – Jane and the Twelve Days of Christmas by Stephanie Barron
  • Spring 2023 (upcoming) – Jane Austen’s Letter’s edited by Deirdre LaFaye (either newest or second newest edition) – late March
Categories
Sabbats

Happy Lughnasadh!

Lughnasadh, Half Way to Fall

Happy Pumpkin Spice Season! Hahaha. I am a fan of pumpkin spice flavored things. Since I’m a New Englander to my core, I like to go to Dunkin for my pumpkin spice drink of the season. My order is a little fancy though: medium iced coffee, with 4 pumpkin, 2 mocha, and oat milk. It feels like I’m drinking Pumpkin Milk…or something.

Lughnasadh graphic for social media PNG file

What is Lughnasadh?

Since we’re halfway between Summer Solstice and Fall Equinox, neopagans, witches, and others celebrate this midpoint between the seasons with a sabbat, aka holiday.

Lughnasadh is pronounced LOO-nah-sah. (There’s a series of videos on YouTube that help with pronouncing sabbats, including Lughnasadh. They’re very helpful!) It is the first of the harvesting festivals. The other two harvesting festivals are Fall Equinox, aka Mabon, and Samhain (sow-een), aka Halloweeen.

Lughnasadh is often symbolized with wheat, corn, or other grains, since those things are harvested around this time. That is why the graphic I made has wheat and corn in it.

Lughnasadh story size graphic

Lughnasadh is also called Lunasa and also goes by the term “Lammas.” You can learn more about the Celtic origins of the celebration from this informational post at the Boston Public Library blog: https://www.bpl.org/blogs/post/the-origins-and-practices-of-lammas-lughnasad/

Lughnasadh Graphic for Social Media

Anyone can use these graphic for their Facebook banner, Twitter post, IG story or whatever they like in order to commemorate the Lughnasadh sabbat on social media. (If you can magick it into a video, go for it, since that’s all that Instagram is paying attention to as of August 2022, in order to compete with TikTok. Wah.)

Please credit @NotebookWitch on most social media or @TheNotebookWitch on Instagram, if you use this graphic.

Happy Harvest!!!

Categories
Literary Arts

Unmentionable – Boston Austen Book Club Summer 2022 Meeting

Aug 28 at 1pm via Zoom, “Unmentionable” by Therese O’Neill

Even though some of my literary endeavors may not be directly related to witchcraft and witchery, my own spiritual practice is closely tied to what I’m reading, writing, and consuming in arts and entertainment, so I will also include certain posts about those things here at Notebook Witch.

We’re Going to Talk about Regency Underwear!

The Summer 2022 Boston Austen Book Club will meet to discuss the fascinating non-fiction book “Unmentionable: The Victorian Lady’s Guide to Sex, Marriage, and Manners” by Theresa O’Neill (https://www.facebook.com/thereseoneillwrites)

While this book focuses on the Victorian Era, Regency Era customs are also discussed. If you’re a weirdo like me and have ever wondered how these beloved Austen characters did things like go to the bathroom or brush their teeth, this book has some answers for you!

The book club will remain online for Summer 2022. We will meet via Zoom on Sunday, August 28 at 1pm ET. Zoom information will be posted the day of the event  for those who RSVP and the Facebook event page. If you’re not on Facebook, you can email Bridget Eileen at vintagebridge@gmail.com to RSVP. 

As always, newcomers are welcome! You can join us from wherever you are. Just read the book and prepare for a lively discussion. This event is free! 

https://www.facebook.com/events/424115529771119
Categories
Literary Arts

Tori Amos Book Club – Piece by Piece, Mon, Aug 22 at 8pm ET via Zoom

Even though some of my literary endeavors may not be directly related to witchcraft and witchery, my own spiritual practice is closely tied to what I’m reading, writing, and consuming in arts and entertainment, so I will also include certain posts about those things here at Notebook Witch.

Calling All Ears With Feet: Join the Tori Amos Book Club!

Tori Amos’s Ocean to Ocean North American Tour has ended. What’s an EWF to do with their post-Tori Tour blues? Read books, like the nerds we are, of course!

Tori Amos Book Club – Monday, August 22 at 8pm ET via Zoom to Discuss “Piece by Piece”

To start things off, we’ll celebrate Tori’s birthday by discussing her first book, “Piece By Piece” co-authored by Ann Powers.

On August 22, we’ll come together for a live discussion of the book and new insights the book has provided these many years after it was first published.

RSVP Info for Tori Amos Book Club

The book club meeting will be online via Zoom. The Zoom link will be provided on the day of the event. RSVP at the Facebook Event page. 

Note: if someone you know is not on Facebook but wants to join us, email me to RSVP and check this webpage for the Zoom info, which I’ll post on the bottom of this post on the day of the event!

Join the Tori Amos Book Club Facebook Group

As you (re-)read feel free to post your thoughts in the Tori Amos Book Club!  https://www.facebook.com/groups/toriamosbookclub

Future Tori Amos Book Club Events

  • (Keep Up the) Resistance (for the 2022 Mid Terms): middle of October, exact date TBD
  • (Beat the Winter Blues with a) Comic Book Tattoo: early February, exact date TBD
  • Little Earthquakes Graphic Novel: late March, exact date TBD

This should tide us over until the European tour is scheduled to start!!! If all goes well, we will add other titles to our list, like Jason Elijah’s curation of Tori quotes, The Myth of Tori, books 1 and 2, and  biographies we like.

Bridget Eileen’s Other Literary Events

Check out my Links Page for info on my other literary endeavors, like the Boston Austen Book Club and the Boston Poetry Marathon

Categories
Literary Arts

Boston Poetry Marathon 2022

Even though some of my literary endeavors may not be directly related to witchcraft and witchery, my own spiritual practice is closely tied to what I’m reading, writing, and consuming in arts and entertainment, so I will also include certain posts about those things here at Notebook Witch.

Bridget Eileen Returns as an Artistic Director and Organizer for the Boston Poetry Marathon

Since 2017, I have been one of the Boston Poetry Marathon organizers and artistic directors. The 3-day poetry reading festival is jam-packed with 100+ poets reading 7 minutes a-piece. If you think it seems like a lot of work, YOU ARE RIGHT! Hahaha. (Slowly loses mind…) Read all about this year’s event below! Hope you can make it or tune in!

Boston Poetry Marathon 2022

Aug 5- 7

  • Friday, August 5 – Online Only, 4-11pm
  • Saturday & Sunday, August 6 and 7 – In-person at the Community Church of Boston in Copley Square, doors at 12:30pm

Admission is free but donations are welcome and appreciated. Come to the Community Church of Boston on Saturday and Sunday. Tune in to our Facebook and YouTube channels to watch live all weekend long.

The Boston Poetry Marathon is an all-volunteer effort. 2022 proceeds will go to organizations that support reproductive freedom and abortion care, The Womxn Project and the Eastern Massachusetts Abortion Fund.

Learn more at BostonPoetryMarathon.com

Social Media Information

Categories
Literary Arts Modern Witchcraft

The Truth about Witchcraft Today by Scott Cunningham

Book Review: The Truth about Witchcraft Today by Scott Cunningham, first published in 1987

This is actually an “oldie but goodie” as far as #witchbooks go but I will never understand this cover. Ever. πŸ˜†

Someone said maybe it looks like this to convey that yes, even “young women in 1980s businesswear with jobs that require briefcases can be and are witches.” πŸ€”πŸ€·πŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

I guess back then, as now, there’s all sorts of people about with the misconception that witchcraft has anything to do with devil-worship? When anyone with an ounce of sense knows that the fictional entity called “the devil” is a purely Christian construct.

A poet friend, @gildedy made me remember this cover because she has a whole other cover to submit to the “Misleading Covers Sweepstakes” so thanks for the inspo, Gilmore. 

This short but comprehensive books, first published over 35 years ago, has a lot of information that is still relevant today. I think it’s a good place to start for self-described baby witches, or others who are magick/pagan/witch curious.

It’s is still available for sale, and I bought mine at Better World Books, but you can also find it on Amazon and other online book sellers.

Categories
About Sabbats

Happy Ostara! Spring into Notebook Witch: the Blog

To my Northern Hemisphere readers: Happy Ostara! To those in the Southern Hemisphere, I hope your Mabon is deliciously autumnal.

help yourself to using this Ostara graphic as a Facebook banner or Twitter post, etc, in order to mark the Sabbat. Please credit @NotebookWitch, or @TheNotebookWitch on Instagram, if you do use it.

Blog Now in “Soft Launch” Mode

I conceived of this blog around Samhain 2021, so we will count that as the Official Start Date for NotebookWitch.com. But I set up the “soft launch” of this actual website that you’re looking at in March 2022, so we’ll call Ostara the soft launch date!

Now that this website is built, I’ll be posting on witchcraft and related topics about my neopagan spiritual practice here at NotebookWitch.com.

Where the Posts “Spring” from

(Are you sick of my Ostara puns yet?) Before starting Notebook Witch, I had previously published witch-related blog posts at my long-standing arts and culture blog, AnArtsNotebook.com.

I’ll be migrating those posts here to “Notebook Witch by Bridget Eileen” as one of my many projects to build up this blog. So, you will see some posts that date to before today. That’s because they were originally published at An Arts Notebook. But the soft launch start date of Notebook Witch is Ostara 2022.

As I work on republishing the witch-related content from my other blog, you can read previous blog posts on witchcraft and witchery at: https://www.anartsnotebook.com/search/label/notebook%20witch

I’ll be moving those posts to this blog, and of course adding lots of additional content, as time progresses. Stay tuned for more content to come!

Categories
Sabbats

Reflections on Imbolc

How My Name Helped Me Find My Spiritual Practice and Identity

Imbolc graphic banner 16:9 dimensions for Facebook cover, Twitter post, and other social media. Feel free to use! Please credit @NotebookWitch on social media (or @TheNotebookWitch on Instagram)

Imbolc, the Festival of the Deity Brigid, Is Also My Spiritual Identity Anniversary

Imbolc is one of my favorite and most personally meaningful holidays. It is the anniversary of my realization that my spiritual identity, my “religion” so to speak, is as a solitary eclectic pantheistic neopagan witch.

Imbolc is also the celebration of the spiritual figure from whom I got my name–in the sense that my great-grandmother, and a whole bunch of other Celtic folk were named Bridget, Brigid, Brighid or some variation thereof, in the Saint/Goddess’s honor.

It was learning about the Catholic, and syncretized parallel Pagan, holidays celebrated on Feb 1 that got me down a click hole, in which I learned more and more about this spiritual practice, neopaganism and witchcraft, which is now such a meaningful part of my day-to-day existence. And every new thing I learned during all that reading on Feb 1 had me saying, “Yes, exactly! That’s what I’ve always thought! I believe that, too!”

And then =✨magic✨= just like that, I discovered I was a neopagan witch. And so much clicked, so much of the world and my place in it suddenly made far more sense than it had before.

My Name and My Destiny

My name became my destiny. Or my destiny gave me my name, to help me find out who I was. Either way, now I’m here and glad for it. I am grateful for the “meant-to-be”-ness of who I am, starting from the moment I was born and named.

This is a really special day for me. And it’s a great day for us all in the northern hemisphere, since it means we are halfway to Spring!!!

Blessings for #imbolc2022 πŸ’ Happy Saint’s Day to all the Bridgets of the world. Spring is just around the corner!!

Categories
Literary Arts

Our Mother (The Earth’s Prayer)

Poem Prayer for Neopagans to Recite During the Lord’s Prayer

A poem-prayer for neopagans, witches, and other people with an earth-based spiritual practice to recite during the Lord’s Prayer

A little while ago, I was at a wake for an uncle of mine and the service ended with the Lord’s Prayer. I wanted to pray, too, but I’m not Christian at all (I know some people identify as Christian witches). So, I decided I would write something I could say instead of the Lord’s Prayer.

I kept with the rhythm of the Lord’s Prayer and many of the words, if not the consonance of them, as often as I could. That way, it will be easier to either insert the variation into my head (& thus heart) or even say it aloud, without being intrusive to those who are reciting their prayer.

And now I’m sharing with you, in case you find it helpful as well! Please keep it however you need to in order to make it useful for yourself. If you share it on, I do appreciate the credit β™₯️

Our Mother (The Earth’s Prayer)

Our Mother, who art within us
Honored be thy work
Thy loving light
Thy giving dark
This Earth, it is our heaven
Give us the strength to honor you
And help us listen, too
That we listen well the lessons you teach us
And lead us always with your nature
Which is neither good nor evil
For thine is a cycle
A power to be gloried
Forever and ever
Bless’d Be

poem by Bridget Eileen

Categories
Things To Do

The New Orleans Historic VooDoo Museum in the French Quarter

Zombies and VooDoo

It’s teeny tiny and tucked away but it’s rich with history and intrigue. The VooDoo Museum is just a few rooms on Dumaine St in the French Quarter, but there’s a lot to see in all the nooks and crannies from ceiling to floor. I recommend it as a unique New Orleanian attraction.

VooDoo Museum – Lady of Czestochowa

I don’t know exactly how I heard about the VooDoo Museum. A few guidebooks do mention it. I did not go in as someone spooked by voodoo, though.

It was 2013, and I was just settling into realizing I was a neopagan (a solo practitioner, pantheist, eclectic who observed the Celtic pagan holidays, to be exact, as I define myself now.) So I went to the VooDoo museum with more reverence and a desire to learn about the history of this practice.

New Orleans Voo Doo Museum – Banner Fabric Artwork, Man with Snake

When you first walk in to the little museum, the person at the front desk may have a large snake around them. That was the case for me. I think the guy wanted to shock me. But I’m a snake person. Heck, I’m going to the VooDoo Museum, you know?

Anyway, you give your admission and then you can walk through the rooms. Though it is small, it is packed from top to bottom with artwork, offerings, altars, and exhibits.

About VooDoo practioners and cemeteries

There is a small gift shop. I bought something, and I have to tell you: it worked. I bought some gris gris (talisman). A blue little bag, for wealth. I was on unemployment and only partially employed at the time. Later in the month, I got two full-time job offers. Coincidence? Maybe. But I still have my gris gris, and I’m still grateful for the fortune it may have brought me.

For more information on visiting the Voo Doo Museum in New Orleans you can go to New Orleans Online: https://www.neworleans.com/listing/new-orleans-historic-voodoo-museum/32662/