Welcome to Yesterways Order of WiseCraft

Want to learn about WiseCraft Wicca? Have no one nearby or afraid to reach out to strangers? Can't expose your leanings for fear of retaliation? Just plain want privacy to learn? The Wiccan Witch of the Midwest can help you with that...pull up a chair, sit a spell and start reading. Feel free to comment and ask questions -- I'll get back to you, I promise, Witch's honor.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Yesterways Blog is sporting Beltane bling!

Ostara and Easter is behind so it was time to dress the blog in Beltane bling. Looks pretty cute. Beltane is fast approaching so it won't last long. It's fun decorating the blog for the seasons.

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be!
Rayven Michaels

The wall after a bit of drying

And here is a quick update on how the wall looks now after a bit of drying. All it needs now is a coat of polyurethane to seal it. Then two more walls and it is done!

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be!
Rayven Michaels

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Bathroom Makeover at Yesterways Cottage with Brown Craft Paper

I have been itching to try the brown craft paper technique on something.  Two different projects came to mind -- one small and one larger. Starting with the small one seemed more prudent. It would allow me to get the hang of it and quickly finish something so I could feel good about it. Cheesy reason I know, but hey, it works.

We have only one bathroom and the former occupant of the house painted around the sink with purple but did the remaining walls in terra cotta.  The shower curtain was the only thing that made it make sense because it was a butterfly print that had both colors. However, having formerly had a patriotic themed bathroom with whimsical country decorations, the purple just wasn't jiving for us.  In the photo above, you can see the original color and the first piece of brown craft paper in place.

In the above two photos, you can see one whole wall has been layered with brown craft paper. It was quite fun fitting the pieces together like a puzzle. Although there is no photo to show it, I did use a paint brush to smooth out the glue mixture to an even application. And now we wait for it all to dry and see what we have. 

One thing is for sure, we won't have purple walls anymore.

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be!
Rayven Michaels

Monday, April 21, 2014

Journey to Wicca...

I had a discussion today with someone regarding transitioning from Christianity to Wicca and how hard that can be.  While many people know instinctively that Christianity isn't a good fit for them, they have many years of background with it and are still immersed in a predominantly Christian environment. There can be a lot of emotional conflict and anxiety during the switch over.  It is a shedding process of the old beliefs that can take a long period of time to leave behind for some while for others it may be as simple as flipping a switch.  For those who suffer anxiety, they may be fearful of hell and damnation, still caught up in the devil and demons, fearing the anti-christ and looking to angels as guardians. So, the transition to Wicca may be a very bumpy one for some. Add to that the pressures of family and friends who are still Christian, still believe you are Christian, and the natural instinct to hide your interests and decisions until you have it all sorted out and feel strong enough to tell others, and you have beginning Wiccans in a literal hot bed of coals.

In my own journey to Wicca, I was raised in a Christian environment. However, I was blessed that my parents didn't have an affinity for *organized religion*.  They were firm believers that church attendance was not a requirement of Christianity and they firmly held that one could pray directly to God without clergy to intervene. Also, my parents believed in personal choice -- they believed that we children had the right to choose for ourselves what we wanted to do.  If we wanted to go to Church, they would see that we got there as long as they were certain we were attending for the *right* reasons. For instance, as young tweens, we attended a week long youth revival at the urging of peers and the *reward* was to go out for ice cream at the end of the week. Our parents let us go all week long but on ice cream reward night, they were there as usual to pick us up and when we explained it was ice cream night, my parents firmly held we could not go because we were not to be bribed into church attendance and being at church should be reward enough. We didn't go any more after that for a very long time.

Oddly enough, at the early age of 6 years old, I announced that I was a Witch after getting a Witch Halloween costume that year. I wanted to wear the dress and hat constantly and had magickal friends with powers. Of course it was deemed a child's fantasy and I was eventually told that it was okay to be a Witch for Halloween but that it was only pretend and that I couldn't be a Witch all the time because God didn't like them. I thought that was strange because my concept of God at that young age was that God loved everyone and every thing so that didn't ring true with me. But to stay out of trouble, I was a Witch every Halloween for the rest of my childhood and openly professed being a Witch during that time since it was acceptable and the rest of the time, I quietly considered myself a Witch year round.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

What to Wear as a Wiccan

In most of the movies, Wiccans and Witches are portrayed dressed all in black sporting huge pentacles, garish makeup and hair in total disarray. That may be good for the horror shows and helps portray the concept they have in the movie, but that doesn't translate into the real world.  Wiccans aren't wicked witches from the West or any where else -- they are real people with personal preferences.

Although a quick internet search for Wiccan clothing will get you some styles that are commonly accepted as Wiccan wear, it's important to stress there is no particular way to dress as a Wiccan.  How a person expresses themselves in clothing, jewelry and other accessories is a very personal choice and is as diverse as the individuals themselves.

Some Wiccans do like to dress all in black, I often do, but that isn't a mandate by any means. It is a choice.  Some dress much like the hippies of the 60s in free flowing clothing. Then there is the ever popular Ren Faire style clothing. And of course there is good old comfy t-shirt and jeans with shoes of choice.  Wiccans come from all walks of life and therefore have wide and varying tastes in apparel. We're talking business people in suits, clerical workers, new age shop owners, tarot readers, soccer moms, PTA members, and on and on. Dress in whatever way makes you feel good.

And just like any other people, Wiccans may choose to dress different ways for different occasions.  For instance, every day street wear may differ from what they wear to ritual, or what they wear to school or the office may differ from what they wear after hours and on weekends.  It all depends on the person, their personal taste, and lifestyle.

If you are dressing to raise eyebrows or be shocking, you might want to ask yourself why you feel the need to do that, because Wicca isn't about shocking the world.  Wicca is about living a peaceful life in harmony with nature and its seasons.

In short, it doesn't really matter how you dress, other than it is something that YOU like.  Here are a couple of photos depicting typical ways I like to dress.  But honestly, I have a love of clothes and costuming so I'm all over the board from all black to bright and wild, flowing things, Victorian and Steampunk styles, and plain old t-shirt and jeans. I can blend in with the herd or stick out bright and wild. I just enjoy being me!

Watch for my 55 Days of Funky as I count down to my 55th birthday wearing clothes that I find fun.

So go forth spread your Wiccan wings and wear what you like!

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be!
Rayven Michaels

A Video to help tell others you are Wiccan

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Earth Spirit Soul: Measuring Success - Are Failures Really Failures?

I wrote this article a while back on the Earth Spirit Soul blog.  It is something to really ponder.

Earth Spirit Soul: Measuring Success - Are Failures Really Failures?: As humans we tend to be obsessed with measuring things and being successful, and most importantly, measuring success. What happens when all ...