Saturday, October 31, 2015

Happy Halloween from the Traveling Chariot

Spectacular & Spooky street art in the medieval town of Kilkenny
Just back from Ireland, the ancient land where so many Halloween and Harvest traditions were born, I am trying to relish the holiday and the season. Above and below I am sharing some macabre photos from my rambles. Halloween has it roots in the Irish Celtic festival of Samhain, meaning summer's end. Check out Bitesize Gaelic for English & Irish Halloween words and pronunciations. Before it was all kitkats & zombies, Samhain was a time to ready for the dark half of the year, for it marked the Celtic New Year. It was a time to honor ancestors (which I did in Ireland, tracing my ancestors past), loved ones, and the loss of the past year. It was a liminal time when, it was believed, that the veil between this world and the other was thin and when fairies, goblins, and darker spirits came and went, roamed free on the eve of Samhain. It is natural that bonfires were a way keep such spirits at bay as well as celebrate a new year.  So on this rainy mist covered Halloween, light some candles or  a jovial bonfire and ready yourself for winter, for winter is coming.
near the ruins of Kells Priory
stones at small chapel on the grounds of Tintern Abbey, County Wexford
Stones at monastic ruins of Glendalough, Co. Wicklow
Crows keeping watch at Hore Abbey, County Tipperary

Monday, October 26, 2015

Ramble Around Ireland #1

Trim Castle Keep
Dublin always bookends our trips to Ireland for practical reasons like flights & jet lag. But we don't stay long because A: we have there been several times and B: cities are great but, for us, rural is better. It is out of cities and into the countryside that Ireland's ancient tangled roots really show. Where we can trace time and traditions alongside rivers and mountain ranges. So after a day in Dublin we pick up our pint-sized rental car and head north. We first stopped at Trim Castle which is an impressive walled ruin (that you might recognize from the film Braveheart). Trim Castle, situated on the River Boyne, was begun in 1167 at the site of an earlier wooden fortress. It cost a meager 4 euro to visit. To explore inside the keep (tower) one must take the tour, which last about an hour.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Over the Hills & Far Away

Back from the land of myth & mists, that great green isle of Ireland. Hoping to share some of my rambles soon, though Autumn is in full color now & the trees are tugging me out of doors. Until then...
Cahir Castle, Ireland

Monday, October 5, 2015

Spilt Ink

I looove this leather which reminds me of spilt ink in indigo and brown. This is my personal journal and think I write in it more than my previous one. Perhaps there is a correlation between the allure of the journal and my journal attendance...It could also be that this is quite large, 7.5 x 9, thus easier to write in than my last journal. The only thing that would make this better is if the leather was green, rather than blue, and brown. I have more of this luscious leather, so if you are needing an inspirational vessel for your words or sketches drop me a line at . I'm open to custom orders and sizes. Or browse my Etsy Shop for other journals. Shop and Blog will be closed for a bit soon because this Chariot is going to be a-traveling !

Mushroom Monday: Earthstar

These are Earthstar Mushrooms, they are otherworldly and quietly bloom on the forest floor from July to September (I found these in August I think). Their name derives from the shape they make when they open. My trusty mushroom companion Missouri's Wild Mushrooms states for their habitat: "In the strangest places, but mostly single to several on the forest floor." It also notes that if you dry one out it will last forever, make a great keepsake, and conversation starter. They seem just the right mushroom to make a wish upon.

Not comprehensive of all MO mushrooms but a very good resource for the most common and most of the edibles. Great amount of information to help one identify and feel confident about eating an edible mushroom. And recipes in the back. 

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Feeling Teal

This little teal volume was crafted for a gift. This leather is so beautifully colored and weathered. It is a bit brighter than the photos let on (and I have more if anyone is interested, let me know). Inside is adorned with bright paisley handmade paper and two vintage postage stamps.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Happy Fall to All

Another Autumnal Window. The sun was so warm and bright this day getting a good picture was challenging. My light green pumpkins are all washed out in this photo. Fall is in full swing now that October has arrived and the weather sure feels like it.