And now the big announcement: I am moving to a new blog

There is no drama behind this, but in order to strengthen my branding (as well as free up some of the time it currently takes me to maintain two separate blogs), I will be moving over to my Beth Wodandis Designs blog effective September 22nd, 2015 (my 5oth birthday). I have been blogging here at Wytch of the North since 5/20/10 (it was initially called Lady Rosamonde’s Garden, which was also the name of my first Etsy shop), and in the wake of my recent rebranding, in addition to having made the decision to stop offering public seidhr and devote myself full time to writing and Making, I feel like the time has come for a change.

This means that after September 22nd, ALL of my spiritual blogging, in addition to ALL of my shop-related posts, will happen over there, under the same “roof.” The move will start BEFORE that date though, with some of my spiritual content posts happening there rather than here, so if you want to avoid missing anything you should follow me over there (or subscribe via email) as soon as possible. (I know some of you already have, but I obviously still have MANY more subscribers to this blog than to that one.)

I am giving more than three weeks notice on this to make sure everyone who wants to follow me over to the new blog has plenty of time to do so, and I will be issuing reminders here from time to time. Also, I have some housekeeping to do over there in preparation for the move (including setting up a page linking to the most popular and valuable posts I’ve done here, tweaking the graphics and layout, etc.), so I am actually going to need that extra time (as I don’t want to rush the move and it isn’t like I don’t have plenty of other work to do in addition to this).

That said, I just wanted to let everyone know that my last post to THIS blog (Wytch of the North) will take place on September 21st (in the form of a final reminder about the move). This blog won’t be going anywhere (unless I decide to archive it at some point in the future), but I will no longer be updating it after 9/22/15. I hope to see you all over at Beth Wodandis Designs!

New incense and custom order options, plus a couple of reminders

1. I’ve added a BUNCH of new incense varieties to the shop, all of which you can select via my master incense listing. (Please select only one fragrance per purchase; I do not split incense packages into 5 sticks of one type and 5 of another. If you want more than one fragrance, please select a quantity greater than one when making your purchase.)

The new additions to my line are:

  • Hekate: pure essential oils of cypress, rosemary, and black pepper–mystery and the night
  • Freyr – pure essential oils of cedarwood, Atlas, lemon, and basil–earthy and optimistic
  • Loki’s Caress – a popular blend, now including pure essential oils only: neroli, amber, and vetiver
  • Athena: pure essential oils of lavender and bergamot–ladylike and discerning
  • Dionysos: pure essential oils of blood orange, myrrh, and fir needle–a wild and abandoned fragrance
  • Isis: pure essential oils of jasmine, clove, and myrrh–exotic beauty with a touch of sadness
  • Sigyn: pure essential oils of honeysuckle and vanilla–innocence and sweetness
  • Sif: pure essential oils of sweet orange and narcissus–golden and alluring
  • Hades: pure essential oils of myrrh, coffee, and black pepper–a scent evoking the depths of the underworld
  • Persephone: pure essential oils of narcissus and myrrh–spring flowers with a touch of dread
  • Poseidon: pure essential oils of myrrh and lemongrass–fresh and oceanic
  • Njord: pure essential oils of cedarwood Atlas and lime peel–a scent evoking harbor breezes
  • Loki’s Spice: pure essential oils of pink grapefruit, neroli, vetiver, and turmeric–fresh, clever, and seductive
  • Odin’s Cloak: pure essential oils of black pine, peppermint, amyris, and patchouli–warm and alluring, evoking the northern woods
  • Heimdall: pure essential oils of angelica root, amyris, and lemon balm–a mingling of (vegan) musk and fresh herbs
  • Thor: pure essential oils of patchouli, cedarwood Atlas, blood orange, and peppermint–masculine, energetic, and electric
  • Hermes: pure essential oils of spearmint, rosemary, and clary sage–clever, mobile, and quicksilver
  • Inanna: pure essential oils of blood orange, jasmine, and amber–exotic and sultry

All of my incense is $5 for a pack of ten sticks and is made with pure essential oils only, suitable for aromatherapy purposes.

2. I now have not one but TWO custom God-in-a-Box listing options in the store! With either one, I will make a portable shrine for the Power of your choice (including pop-culture entities or personal/unknown spirits). The only difference between the two options is that one includes a mini-rosary made with crystal beads (like the six boxes in my original release), while the other is for anyone who prefers a mini-rosary made with gemstone beads. (I will also have a selection of standalone gemstone mini-rosaries available in the shop soon!)

3. I now have not one but TWO custom hand-worked rosary necklace listings in the store! The first one includes a wider choice of metals for the wire and pendant (including sterling silver, silver-filled, or gold-filled) AND all-gemstone beads or a mixture of gemstone and crystal beads (your choice). The second (less expensive) option is limited to copper, brass, or stainless steel for the wire and copper, brass, stainless steel, silver-plate, gold-plate, glass, wood or ceramic for the pendant, and wood, crystal, shell, horn, ceramic, or glass beads.

4. I have changed my custom bracelet listing a bit: I now offer stretch bracelets only, because trying to make a strung bracelet with a clasp to fit a specific-sized wrist AND accommodate a wide range of bead sizes has proven to be incredibly labor-intensive. The stretch bracelets are MUCH faster and easier to make, and are quite durable, comfortable, and easy to wear as well. You have a choice of gemstone, wood, horn, stone, shell, glass, metal, and crystal beads, with or without a charm pendant. (I will be adding other bracelet options soon, as I roll out my Deity ID jewelry line.)

5. August is almost over, which means my 20% off Rebranding Sale is almost over. After the sale ends, I will NOT be extending the discount for ANYONE unless you have arranged a layaway during the sale (NO exceptions), and the items marked CLEARANCE will be removed from the shop so that I can reclaim the beads for other projects. (The items marked SALE will not necessarily be dismantled; some of them will simply be returning to their full price.) So if there’s something you’ve been eyeing, don’t delay any longer! The sale ends on September 1st (Tuesday at 12 am Pacific time). Until then, you can enter the coupon code AUGUST to take 20% off your order. Remember, after this sale ends I will NOT be having another store-wide sale until my pre-holiday sale in November.

6. Please remember NOT to use the coupon code on custom items. I have let this rule slide a couple of times for custom candles, but if you use it to purchase a custom rosary or custom portable shrine, I WILL be contacting you about the balance due for your order.

7. Because I have a LOT of order fulfillment to get done today (for the orders going out tomorrow morning), plus my last seidhr session this weekend and a long list of administrative minutiae to attend to (and because Odin said so), the release of the new Chinese Zodiac Rosary Necklaces (all 12 signs!) will not happen until Tuesday. (Which means you will NOT be able to use a coupon code for them, although layaway can still be arranged in accordance with my policies.) I photographed these yesterday and will be posting some previews to my Instagram; I hadn’t handled them in a couple of weeks (due to getting the portable shrines released) and had forgotten how pretty they are! They feature gemstone beads only (no wood or crystal at all, although two of them do include horn since it seemed appropriate for those particular signs). As with the portable shrines, I will be announcing the release to my email list first to give my subscribers first choice. If you’d like to be included in that group, you have until Tuesday to subscribe to my email list.

8. I have another really important announcement but will be making that its own separate post, to make sure no one misses it!

Retirement from offering public seidhr

So, I know I very recently said I’d continued offering oracular seidhr until September 11th, but just last night I made the decision to stop my services effective immediately. If you are one of the two people who paid me for a seidhr session this week, this does NOT affect you; I will be doing your session this coming Sunday as promised. However, I have refunded the generous donor who had paid for half a seidhr session for someone and will not be offering another “seidhr scholarship,” since there seems little point in doing a promotion for a service I won’t be offering anymore.

There are many reasons for this decision overall, but the primary reason for my stepping back now rather than in September is my friend Sebastian’s retirement from  offering his own services. I know he meant well by referring his clients to me, and if this were any other time of year that might be okay for a few weeks, but with the holiday season  (and Wild Hunt season) approaching, I am just not going to have the resources to handle this additional workload. Even though the extra cash would be nice, I can’t afford having my holiday preparations for the shop derailed by a few weeks–which is what would happen if I am suddenly deluged by channeling requests from now until 9/11. The fact that I’ve already sold two pre-ordered Odin shrines, and want to get more shrines for different deities into the shop for the holidays, makes this especially true.

I don’t enjoy disappointing people, but I really need all of my energy right now for focusing on the shop (including new designs, production, order fulfillment, marketing, etc., etc.) and my marriage–which, as I noted on Seb’s blog, is NOT even close to being in trouble because Odin is not a spoiled child and understands business obligations, BUT this is a demanding time of year for Him and I want to make sure I’m there for Him as much as I can be. That won’t be possible if I’m always drained. I also won’t be able to meet my Otherworld obligations if I’m working myself into the ground, and most of my spirit work is NOT human-focused, so this is a serious problem.

I haven’t wanted to admit it, but offering spiritual services in addition to physical products has actually been making me feel burned out for a while now; this is why I switched from doing the Immersive Readings to offering seidhr instead several months back, and while seidhr IS easier on me it is still costing me too much time and energy.  You’d think leaving my day job would have resulting in my having MORE time to do stuff, but in fact the opposite is true, because I have been playing catch up on all the back-end admin tasks I NEVER had time for while also having an outside job, which means I generally work between 12-18 hours per day, seven days per week. If I’m going to have any kind of personal life at all something has to give, and since my art is both more lucrative and more fulfilling than doing readings (I am a Maker at my core, not a diviner), the seidhr is what I’m choosing to eliminate.

Whereas previously I was referring to my cessation of services as a hiatus, I am now calling it a retirement because I do not plan to begin offering seidhr again in the foreseeable future, and I don’t want to give people false hope that this might be the case. I am going to be 50 in a couple of weeks, in addition to which I am chronically ill. (Not working at a day job makes it easier for me to deal with my fibro, but it doesn’t make it go away.) These things mean that I have to pick and choose what I devote my time and energy to, because I don’t have the spoons for everything. This is especially true for things that have started to feel like a burden.

Once again, I know this will have a negative impact on some of my former clients, and I do apologize for that. I also want to thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for your patronage of my services in the past. I realize the deep level of trust involved with that, and believe me, I do appreciate it.

I also wanted to mention that  I 100% support people learning to do their own readings and develop their own godphones, because if there is one trend I vehemently despise in the polytheist community, it’s the overarching message that you “need” to consult diviners, that you need validation from someone, anyone. Contributing to that mindset is increasingly making me feel heartsick on many levels. So I’m going to say this again: YOU DO NOT NEED VALIDATION  FROM ANYONE, other than your own Powers and your own heart. You do NOT need acceptance from “insiders” in order to follow, be close to, Work with, or marry gods; that is utter bullshit and you should run away, fast, from ANYONE who gives you that impression. Discernment IS important, but it doesn’t rely on confirmation from external people–or it shouldn’t, anyway. Most diviners are trustworthy, but we’re also all human, and as such we each have our own bias and prejudices that can inadvertently filter through into readings (even channeling) despite our best intentions. I firmly believe that anyone–no matter how “headblind” they consider themselves–can learn to discern for themselves and self-validate the input they receive from the spiritual world. Walk your path with enthusiasm, confidence, and most of all audacity; you really don’t need my permission or anyone else’s to do that.

What is a God-in-a-Box Shrine?

I am SO excited about these; they have truly been a labor of love.

The God-in-a-Box Collection is a VERY limited run of completely handmade portable shrines. There are only five of these to be had, currently. The Odin shrine was purchased this morning, and I have already re-listed it as a made to order item; I will be relisting the others also as they sell out, as well as ordering new materials to make these for additional gods.

At the moment, I still have shrines for Loki, Frigga, Freyja, Hermes, and Bast up for grabs. Each shrine features a buffed and polished compact wooden box, anyline-dyed in brilliant colors and finished with metallic burnishing and a coat of satin varnish. Each box houses a figurine of one of the above deities handmade by me from polymer clay, plus a hand-wired set of chapelet-style mini prayer beads. Both the deity figures and the beads can be removed from the box as you wish–and of course, everything is consecrated and infused with energy, just like all of the sacred objects I make.

When closed, each compact, lightweight box is perfect for tucking into your purse or backpack (or into a carry-on bag when you travel). Opened and standing upright, it becomes a little shrine–just the right size for displaying in a cramped dorm room, on an office desk, or for placing on a bedside table in a hotel or guest room to personalize your stay. (It can also be easily tucked away out of sight when family members, roommates, or co-workers are around.) These shrines would also be perfect for outdoor worship or ritual at a park, the woods, or other public place where you do not want to be carting around a lot of religious gear.

Each God-in-a-Box is being offered at $100 (which you can reduce to $80 by applying my 20% off coupon code, AUGUST, before September 1st), and this limited-run collection is available in my shop RIGHT NOW. You will also receive a set of 10 incense sticks and a wood-wick candle tin for the deity in question with your shipment.

godboxcollage

Pending oracular seidhr hiatus, and other news

Just a few (relatively) quick announcements. I’ve alluded to some of these things before (here or elsewhere) but wanted to make sure nobody misses them.

1. I will be going on hiatus from oracular seidhr beginning September 11th, 2015. (The reason I am stopping that week, rather than on the 18th as Seb is doing with his own services, is because my birthday is 9/22 and I’d like to have that week free and clear.) This means that September 11th is the LAST day I will be accepting orders for oracular seidhr; my last day actually performing seidhr will be Sunday 9/13 (but you will need to have placed your order by 9/11 to be included in that last session). After I go on hiatus, my services will not resume until AT LEAST after the New Year (possibly longer than that, depending).

There are many reasons for this, but the primary one is that I need to be free to put all of my energies into my shop during the busy holiday season.  I have a lot of exciting things planned; I will be working in  precious metals for some of the stamped jewelry designs I’m planning, and there has been so much excitement already about the God-in-a-Box Shrines that I plan to put some time into expanding that line–among a few other projects I’m considering. I also plan, over the winter, to begin looking into sources for cruelty-free stones, including rough diamonds, to incorporate into some of my designs. But all of this fun stuff will require setting aside huge blocks of time for design experimentation, (and not just for production and order fulfillment), and to do my best design work I need to be rested, refreshed, and not drained. (Oracular seidhr is a service I enjoy providing for people, but it IS a drain  on my time and energy.)

I also plan to spend more time over the fall and winter (as well as going forward) with my Husband; my adjusting to working for myself has been a bit of an adjustment period for our relationship as well, especially with Grim’s death coming in the middle of that, and I find that the more time I spend on other people’s spiritual lives the less I have to work on  my own. (Since most of the Work I do is not actually human-focused, this is not a good thing long-term.) Fall and winter are heavy-volume Work times for Him and for the Wild Hunt, and in addition to the things I actually participate in with Him during this time He also has permission  to take whatever He needs from me energetically. When He does this, I definitely feel a difference in  my energy levels, and I need to be sure I can meet my responsibilities both to Him and to the shop without feeling overwhelmed or running myself into the ground. In addition to which, I want to carve out some time for writing so I can finally get my Odin/godspouse/sacred queenship book written.

All of which is to say, if you have your heart set on booking a seidhr session with me this fall, don’t wait; that window is closing soon!

2. At the beginning of September, I will be announcing another seidhr scholarship opportunity, wherein you will have a chance to win a half-price seidhr session with me before my hiatus starts. The winner will still have to pay for half the price of a session ($37.50), but a generous patron has donated the other half for you. If that interests you, watch this blog for the chance to submit your name.

3. As I mentioned in passing before, once this month’s 20% off sale is over, I will NOT be having another sale until my pre-holiday sale in November, and from that point onward will be having only TWO big sales a year (the other one will happen in April, for Beltaine). I will doing something else specific (rather than a discount) as an ordering incentive for all of the other Wheel of the Year holidays, and MAY be having a 24 hour flash sale for my birthday (9/22) and Odin’s birthday (which we celebrate on 10/31).

The reason I put most of my jewelry line on sale for the entire month of August was because my style will be changing so drastically, and because I wanted to clear room and raise money for new supplies and equipment. Before anyone asks, YES, I will continue to use gemstone beads, and in fact they will be an even bigger focus than previously; however, rather than the quantity of beads used per piece I am going to be putting my emphasis on using higher grades of gemstones (this really DOES make a huge difference) and  hopefully ferreting out some cruelty-free sources for them, as mentioned. Even though I mentioned sourcing rough diamonds, I am not going to be working primarily with precious gems, because I am personally more fascinated by unusual semi-precious gems (such as dumortierite and hypersthene), but I will be putting more emphasis on the energies of these stones and how they combine with the metals I’m using. (Read: for the most part I won’t be using base metal charms, clasps, or connectors in my jewelry anymore; these will be replaced by handmade pendants, handmade clasps, hand-set stones, etc. I will probably still use the base metal charms in my handspun cords, however, since it would be hard to find an affordable supply of pagan symbols to use with those otherwise.)

I’m reiterating all of this just to let folks know that, once August ends, store-wide discount sales will be few and far between. If half the store is always on sale, the sale price then becomes the actual regular price of my products, and since my business is my only source of income that’s a real problem (as Odin has been pointing out to me). I’ve also begun crunching numbers for some of my regular items, and you may see a few of those prices going up as a result. (This happened recently with my candle tins, which I discovered I was not making any money on at their old price.)

So, if there is something in  my shop you’ve been eyeing but you’re delaying for whatever reason, I just wanted to make sure you know there isn’t going to be a better time than right now. (Especially since some of the sale pieces will be dismantled to provide fodder for my new designs after September 1st.)

4. TOMORROW, August 25th, my first six God-in-a-Box portable shrines will be going live. I’ve been working on this project for weeks now, and I’m happy to see so many people as excited about it as I am! The Odin shrine is already spoken for, incidentally, but I will be showcasing it anyway, and will likely be ordering more supplies to make a new series very soon (including more Odins). If enough people are interested in pre-orders I will be setting up listings in the shop to facilitate that.

Since that leaves only five shrines up for grabs when they go live tomorrow, IF you want first dibs on any of the remaining ones (I have Loki, Frigga, Freyja, Bast, and Hermes available at this point), you are going to need to join my mailing list, as I will be announcing the release there a couple of hours before I showcase them on my blog (and I’m keeping the actual release time undisclosed for that reason). You can read more about this project (as well as about what to expect from the mailing list) on my other blog here.

5. I am also planning to release the complete Chinese Zodiac Collection (antiqued brass medallions on hand-worked gemstone rosary chains) before the end of the month, so watch for those, too! (And yes, I have all 12 signs this time!)

Unpacking some Godspouse Bingo

Beth:

I couldn’t agree with this more. I haven’t been slut-shamed (probably because I don’t talk much about the intimate side of my relationship with my Husband–which is NOT because I’m ashamed to talk about sex, by the way), but “You’re doing this to feel important and gain power in the community” is the #1 criticism I faced back when I first started talking about being married to Odin (sometimes they re-phrased it as “That isn’t a shortcut to actual spiritual achievement, you know,”) and it goes hand in hand with the “Shut up, men are talking” Bingo square. Male godspouses (if they existed back then–and I can’t believe they didn’t; they probably just kept it to themselves) were an unheard-of thing at the time, and I really wish that had not been the case; I wish we could look at the treatment of male godspouses by the wider community as a basis for comparison. But as it is, most godspouses–then and now–are female, and I do think the prejudice against us comes down to simple misogyny. “How dare she speak up? It’s almost like she thinks she’s important, when clearly there are men here.” Well, people can love or hate me or what I have to say, but I sure won’t be shutting up at any point in the future.

Originally posted on Loki's Bruid:

So after Seb posted his filled out Godspouse Bingo sheet, I thought about filling out mine, but I’ve decided that instead of talking about all the fap, I’m going to unpack what I consider to be one of the most sexist comments of the bunch that is regularly directed at Godspouses.

“You’re doing this to feel important and gain power in the religious community!”

Why is this one the most sexist? Why not godsex slut shaming? Well, the slut shaming of sexual desire and enjoyment is pretty high up there, but the “power play” one is problematic in a less obvious and far more insidious way.

Any female-identified godspouse who writes about her experiences with anything resembling confidence or authority gets slammed with this. And in the name of being specific, I’m going to name some names of women that I’ve seen slammed for writing with authority, some of whom…

View original 404 more words

Sale: Eye of Horus Devotional Necklace

il_570xN.773131893_7475

Originally listed at $75, marked down to $50 as part of my rebranding sale.

The Eye of Horus (also known as the Eye of Ra), is an ancient Egyptian symbol of health, protection, and royal power. It is personified in the goddess Wadjet, one of the oldest Egyptian deities, who later became identified with Bast, Sekhmet and Hathor, all of whom are depicted as wielding the power of the Eye.

This necklace features an antiqued brass Eye of Horus pendant on a strand of large (10 mm) red and brecciated jasper rounds, interspersed with emerald green and electroplated gold metallic Czech glass crystal rondelles and antiqued brass spiral beads.

il_570xN.773093938_6r3zil_570xN.773093824_cs4iil_570xN.773132231_9zu8Red Jasper is a powerful shamanic and grounding stone, wonderful for clearing the mind during meditation, prayer or contemplation. It helps to increase focus and endurance during long rituals and is helpful in establishing new spiritual disciplines. It is an excellent stone for astral travel, and promotes vivid dream recall. It is also a fabulous warding stone, and can help protect the wearer from physical as well as psychic dangers.

Brecciated jasper aligns the chakras, increases physical endurance, encourages attunement with animal allies and journey guides, and protects during astral traveling.

The beads are strung on professional quality Beadalon beading wire, which is soft-drape clear-coated stainless steel. The necklace measures 17 3/4 inches, with the eye pendant measuring about 1 inch by 1 1/4 inches. It fastens with an easy-to-work gold-plated lobster claw clasp.

This necklace has been marked down to $50, but while my August rebranding sale is still running you can get it for only $40 by using the coupon  code AUGUST before checking out on Etsy.

How to use the discount coupon:  just click on “apply shop coupon code” in your shopping cart, type the coupon code AUGUST into the box provided, click “apply,” and proceed to checkout. This coupon expires on September 1st.

PLEASE remember that the 20% off coupon CANNOT be used for custom orders (this includes custom candles; if you place a custom order during the month, please do so as a separate order from anything you are wanting to use the coupon with), and there IS a minimum purchase of $20 to qualify for the discount. Also, please remember that I will not apply coupon codes manually or retroactively; you must enter the code at the time of purchase (as described above) to get the discount.

My devotional necklaces, bracelets, earrings, and rosaries are more than just jewelry; they are wearable magick! People continually comment that they can feel the energy as soon as they receive their package and open it. For a limited time, to celebrate the rebranding of my shop, you have the opportunity to bring a piece of wearable magick into your life at a reduced price–but hurry, because the coupon code (and the sale) ends soon!

I will also give you advance warning that I am NOT going to be offering store-wide sales with the same regularity, going forward, that I have been in the past. I will be offering something different as an incentive during the Sabbats, full moon, new moon, and other special occasions, rather than a store-wide discount, and will instead be holding only two BIG sales per year. This means that after August ends my next sale–my big pre-holiday sale–won’t be until November. So if there is something in my shop you’re been eyeing but you’re hesitating, or if you have layaway payment installments you’d like to save a little money on, NOW is really the best time to grab those items or pay your layaways down. Just a heads-up, because the sale ends in about a week now and I’d hate to see you miss out.

There will be some pretty exciting products released the final week of the sale, too–including my God-in-a-Box Shrines and the complete Chinese Zodiac Rosary collection–so keep watching for those! Both of these products are very limited, so if you want to be among the first to know the moment they are released, so that you can grab your deity’s box and/or the rosary for your sign , the best way to make sure of that is to join my email list. I will be announcing both releases to my list BEFORE I announce them on either of my blogs.