Saturday, 23 January 2016

Review: Pagan Parcel by Crafting Magic - January 2016

A little while before Yule I came across a subscription box called Pagan Parcel by Crafting Magic. It wasn't the first I had come across, there were a few I'd seen before that either didn't exist any more or were based in the US are were pricy shipping wise. So when I stumped across Pagan Parcel I was absolutely delighted.

I found a couple of unboxing videos on youtube - my favourites are by RhomanysRhealm and her enthusiasm over the boxes is what made me design to sign up.

The boxes are £14.99 including shipping which I think is a really good price for what you get. Usually you get 8-10 items which are a mixture of herbs, crystals, candles, spell components and one "big" item a month. The overall cost of the items is at least £20 (At least that's what the website says). If Pagan Parcel doesn't do it for you, they are looking at releasing another box or two over the year, the first one will be a Spell Box, not sure what will be in it but I'm intrigued :) We'll see what it brings!

So, onto the actual box!

The box wasn't massive when it came, I've seen them online so I don't know what I was expecting! My only other subscription box experiences are with Nerd Block and MyGeekBox which are a bit larger. I could say one thing though, it smelt heavenly!

First thing out was a A4 piece of paper which details the theme of the box (Imbolc) and lists the contents. On the reverse you have correspondences for the Sabbat and a calendar for February which includes festivals. feast days, the details of full and new books important moments in history (for example this one has the day Gerald Gardner died and the day the Salem Witch Hunt began). There are also a couple of Doreen Valiente quotes for good measure :)

I didn't take a picture of the box as I had opened it, which I now wish I had done. But I was too excited to open it that that had all gone out the window. My original idea had been to do an unboxing video, maybe next month.

So, the first thing I noticed was this: Jasmine incense, and what was the thing causing the smell. It has quite a nice smell, like soap. Unfortunately my husband was less impressed with the smell so not sure if I'll ever burn it, but it was lovely!

This was the second thing I noticed and I was very excited reeds and instructions to make a Brigid's Cross. I was looking at how to get supplies for this only a couple of days ago (although, thinking about it, I live near a river. I could always get reeds from there!). Anyway, this excited me a lot and I am looking forward to crafting this, pictures if all goes well!

The next couple of items are relatively staples for the boxes that I've seen. Candles, in seasonal colours and a crystal. I don't think I own Turquenite so that's exciting.

Herbs! So we have Blackberry leaves, Coltsfoot, Sunflower Seeds and Sesame Seeds. Blackberry Leaves are associated with Bridgt, Coltsfoot is for love (Valentines day) and Sunflower and Sesame seeds are for altar use (although the leaflet states all herbs received are fit for human use, so perhaps a snack if you got hungry!). The other pack is Lavender Bath Salts which smell heavenly also, not massively strong but I don't know if that's just because the Jasmine was so strong.

In the box were also 4 other sheets of paper that came along with the Brigid's Cross instructions. There is a spell if you're bothered by an aspect of your personality it helps you get rid of it, a simple cleansing and blessing ritual, a seed blessing ritual and a recipe for a simple seed cake. Lovely bits of information that come on slightly smaller than A5 bits of paper that can be glued straight into a Book of Shadows should you desire!

This is the "big"item. a Soapstone Pestle and Mortar with a beautifully engraved pentagram. I have a soapstone dish with a Triple moon on it so this will go with it beautifully. It's really rather quite heavy and beautiful. Also not something I own for magical reasons as I'm only getting into herbs and things. It's beautiful.

All in all I am really pleased with this, I look at it more as a kit as everything seems to be linked to spells or rituals provided or can be used in the forthcoming month. I love this more than I would love 8 or so random pagan related things that might not have any direct correlation. 

I'm going to keep up my subscription, I think this will give me a wonderful pagan boost, and once a month will be just right I think. I will continue to review them as they come, if I remember to before I tear the package open I might even do a video, but I wouldn't hold your breath. It's just too exciting to get a box of pagan treats, I don't know how people manage to resist!!

Over all, highly recommended, I hope this review has been helpful!

Sunday, 17 January 2016

Merry Meet Again

Part of my 2016 aims and goals is to develop my beliefs and to develop my spiritual practice. As such I've decided that I want to bring this blog back, to attempt to keep my witchy progress somewhat separate from the general goals of my year. My general life blog is Ink Your Map which has my general 2016 goals and aims and personal developments, if anyone reads this and is interested in that side! Ink Your Map is updated Fortnightly and I don't know if I will be doing that with Witch Ways Now or not, I'm not going to assign myself to set days or a set schedule, I suppose I'll post if anything major or exciting happens or any thoughts that come to me I want to share with everyone.

Several of my goals so far are based off my spirituality, they are:-

  1. Get more pagan articles published
  2. Fire Walk
  3. Speak publicly about my beliefs
  4. Read more - Witchy Books in particular 
  5. Learn Tarot
  6. Practice my spirituality
  7. Do the Fellowship of Isis course
  8. Do the OBOD Course
  9. Go to Glastonbury by myself.
  10. Crystal Database Project
So I have a few already, some I've already started to pick up on like writing articles (one getting published so far) and I've started to pick up Witchy books to read and do the OBOD course. Going to Glastonbury is probably not going to happen, I have a bit too much going on to be able to afford that sadly but I can dream! The rest are a work in progress and I want to very much start on a lot of them straight away, where possible.

I am excited about speaking about my beliefs as I already have a talk lined up in August which I will need to write and prepare for. It's the first one I've done like that and I'm excited for it. Also will be doing the Firewalk then too which I am also really excited about doing again!

My only issue is, what if I'm doing too much? What if I am hurting my spirituality but attempting to do too many thing all in one go. I bought the Llewellyn Witches Date Book to plan the Pagan things I wanted to do each week. Last week I did nothing I planned. Well, not entirely true I've managed to touch on the OBOD course but that was on Thursday instead of the allotted Monday. I think I'm pushing myself too early and that I need to step back and figure out what it is I am actually wanting to achieve. It's great saying "Oh I want to read all these witchy books" but how? Do I want to just sit and read them cover to cover? Do I want to spend time over them writing notes which means I might take an hour to read a chapter that would normally take 20 minutes? Do I want to read and then spend time writing notes on the chapter I've just learned? Studying was never really a strong point during my high school or brief college careers, so I think I have a lot to learn as to what is going to be a good way for me to go about doing things. 

I think instead of planning the week I am going to plan the evening that day, I know that things get in the way and that I can't always follow a schedule depending on the plans of those around me but I will try.

The other thing I am going to start doing on here is reviewing the books I read, some will be re-reads as I attempt to get my arse back into things, some/most will be entirely new. I want to read a lot this year. I also need to stop being on my laptop so much over weekends so I can get things like reading done or I will be in the exact same state at the end of this year as I was at the beginning.

So baby steps required right now, especially while we're still in the early part of the year and my enthusiasm is still somewhat lacking. Once we get beyond Imbolc I might be a bit more willing.

But roll on 2016 - we'll see where it takes me on my path and how it's going to change me, because it will, I know it will.