Monday, December 31, 2012

The Last Post of 2012

This is the last post of the year. Normally I spend New Year's Eve thinking about the things I did not do during the year that I wanted to accomplish and everything that I want to do over the next twelve months. I have decided this year to not put no pressure on 2013 (something that goes against my nature). Of course, I am hoping that it is my best year ever and that I look back a year from now knowing that all of my dreams came true. But I'm not...actually, yes I am. I am putting pressure on myself and my life to be the best because that is just how I roll. haha

2011 was, for me a year of endings. 2012 has seemed like a year of lining my ducks in a row, so to speak, for the beginnings that will come in 2013. It has felt like a year for tying up old loose ends and for watering the seeds of new beginnings. To be honest, it wasn't a great year or a terrible one. It was mediocre in a few areas, amazing in others, that sort of thing. I feel like I learned a lot this year but that the knowledge I learned about myself has made me realize that there are many things I need to work on. I was really lucky in love this year even though there were times when it looked like that might not be the case. But again, that was one of those areas where the foundation was laid and over the next year the real building of something more is going to happen. But it's a solid foundation and it's more than I could have hoped for once so I'm grateful for it.

In the next year I hope to do something to improve my health, at least a little. I hope to build up that love I was talking about with the most amazing man I have ever had in my life. I'm also hoping that I've hit on the idea that might land me an agent but let's be honest...I spend every New Year's Eve hoping that is soon in my future. I'll have my bachelor's in psychology around the second week of April so that's one accomplishment guaranteed for 2013. I'll also be starting my Master's. This is the part where I say what I say every year, that I have a feeling 2013 is going to be amazing. Here's to hoping I am right.

I hope that the year brings all of you joy, peace, and prosperity. I hope it is full of magic (real or metaphorical depending upon your views) and light. I sincerely hope that in one year we can all meet back here and compare notes to see that all of us were blessed in every way possible in 2013. Sounds good, doesn't it? Happy New Year, all!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Blessed Yule

It's that time of year again, my Pagan pals (and apparently some Atheists as well). Tomorrow morning winter will officially begin. Yule, or the Winter Solstice, has been celebrated in different cultures in different ways for thousands of years. It is the shortest day of the year and in many old cultures it was also the last day of the year or it was close to the New Year (with the exception of the Celtic Pagans who saw Samhain as the New Year) so many of the customs and the rituals surrounding this holiday reflect both an honoring of the sun and its 'return' to earth and the hopes and plans for the upcoming new year. 

Since last Yule everything I've posted concerning the Sabbats has been things that I found online. However, for the next turn of the wheel I will be posting information I personally use from books like The Sabbats by Edain McCoy and Book of Shadows by Silver Ravenwolf. The information I give is only a starting point. As Pagans we all have different traditions that we follow, different correspondences that appeal to us, etc. And as a solitary witch I approach the Sabbats in that way as opposed to looking at it from a group perspective as someone in a coven would. Plus, I don't want to post this stuff for Pagans only. I want anyone who is curious to come here and read in plain English about what we do if they want to. Let's face it. As we all know, our rituals got a bad rep long long ago and unfortunately there are still people out there who think that tomorrow witches all over the world will gather in our black hooded cloaks to sacrifice children to demonic forces. If I can make just one person realize that we're not into that sort of thing, that will make me a truly happy witch. 

The mythology surrounding the Winter Solstice today usually centers around the Goddess giving birth to the God. This is directly related to the sun's power again waxing and the days slowly growing longer as the sun is the symbol of the God the way that the moon is the symbol of the Goddess. So this day (and night) usually represents the rebirth of the God, the return of the waxing portion of the year, the New Year for non-Celtic traditions or solitaries who walk a Celtic path, and it is used to honor the triple Goddess. This is a time for meditation and introspection. Many Gods and Goddesses have been associated with this solstice through time but common deities worshiped on this date are all reborn Gods and all spinning Goddesses as the sun is reborn and the wheel of the year turns once more.

The color correspondents for this day are usually red, green, white, and gold. I have heard that red comes from the color of berries on plants like holly that live through the winter; green is associated with the few trees and bushes that did not 'die' in the winter months as they symbolized the promise of rebirth; white is associated with snow and gold with the sun. But I am sure there may be variations on the significance of these colors and what they stood for. Symbols of Yule are holly, evergreen trees, the Yule log, and wreaths. Food associated with Yule are poultry, dried fruit, egg nog, pork, and beans. And cookies of course. Plants of this Sabbat include bay, pine, ginger, Valerian, myrrh, and poinsettia. 

*The ritual I am about to give you is taken from The Sabbats by Edain McCoy with a portion slipped in there from Silver Ravenwolf's Book of Shadows. I'll mark Silver's part to distinguish between the two. In addition to that, I want to clarify that the Goddess is referred to as a Virgin in this ritual in keeping with the original definition of a Virgin, a woman whole unto herself. This word is not used to indicate whether or not the Goddess has had sex. We do have our beloved Beltaine after all.... ;)

A Yule Ritual:
For this ritual you will need a bowl of salt water placed on your altar. Holly and mistletoe are also suggested. Place the holly on your altar and have the mistletoe ready but not visible. Artificial herbs are fine. A Yule log may also be added but it is optional. If you do add a Yule log, put three candles (one red, one white, and one black) in it.

Cast your circle, call your quarters, and invite your deities. 

(The following invocation is from Silver Ravenwolf's Book of Shadows)
Stand before your altar and say:
Morning light will flood the chamber, winter solstice sun. Energy unfolding, Saturn's rule has just begun. Crystals formed of ice and frost freeze field and forest green while mighty Oak and Holly fight for favors from our Queen. The great wheel brings conception, birth and death as days of yore. Each bonfire on a leyline honors what has gone before. Seven planets, seven spheres, seven gates swing open. I lift my arms and call the charge, the incantation spoken! I conjure winter spirits, pour forth the sacred winds. Come hither, oh great fire! The magick now begins! Solar vapors, stormy heavens, clouds of earth and waves unite in your perfection on this, the shortest Solstice day! I hold the key of secrets and the phantoms will avail. The crossroads shimmer open as the rod connects to grail. Seven planets, seven spheres, seven gates swing open. I lift my arms and call the charge, the incantation spoken! Yule logs burning, each spark a blessing brings. Red and green, the sacred blood of past and future kings. Mistletoe and bayberry, winter leaves and resin, spice and myrrh and evergreen connect the earth to heaven. Through scented smoke and sacred prayer I manifest goodwill. Bring peace and joy to everyone and every wish fulfill. Seven planets, seven spheres, seven gates swing open. I lift my arms and call the charge, the incantation spoken.

(The rest is from Edain McCoy)
Blessed be the season of Yule. Blessed be the young Virgin Goddess who gives to her people tonight a newborn God. Blessed be the newborn God.

If you are of a non-Celtic tradition you should next take your athame and walk to the center of your circle saying: Farewell old year. Farewell to the Holly King! Make the sign of the banishing pentagram. Next, say: Welcome New Year! Welcome the Oak King! Make the sign of the invoking pentagram. When you are finished replace your athame on your altar.

Remove the holly from the altar and place it out of sight. Place the mistletoe, the symbol of the Oak King, on top of your altar in a place of honor. Say:
Blessed be the King of the Waxing Year. I pray you will guide your children safely through to the season of warmth and light. 

Take the Goddess candle in your left hand and the God candle in your right, saying: 
Tonight the Goddess and God are reunited. Tonight life begins anew and light begins anew. Blessed be the one light. Blessed be the divine force of creation.
Move the candle flames together so they are one. Spend a moment reflecting on its meaning and then replace the candles side by side on the altar. 

Next, light the Yule log if you have one. Begin at the white candle saying: Blessed be the Virgin, innocent and fresh. Light the white candle. At the red candle say: Blessed be the Mother, fertile and loving. Light the red candle. At the black candle say: Blessed be the Crone, powerful and wise. Light the black candle. Say: Blessed be the Triple Goddess.

Go to the salt water and place your fingertips in it. Anoint your feet, belly, and head. This is the blessing of the triple Goddess. The Virgin is at the feet, the Mother at the belly, and the Crone at the head. You can repeat the words of the lighting of the Yule log at each point. Think about the gifts you want to give this season and what you want from the new year. When you are finished, close your circle.
The circle is open but never broken. Blessed Be!

So there you have the combination I will be using tomorrow in my ritual. I'm also finally starting a tradition I have wanted to start for years. You see, I am quite outnumbered in my house and in my family. I am the only practicing witch. Christmas is the day that my family gets together to exchange gifts and have family time and since I like seeing Christmas as a day set aside for this purpose I have no complaints. However, I have always wanted to give those I love one special gift on my holy day and this year I will finally do that...with my little sister anyway. She is 16 and she doesn't really care why she is getting a present 4 days early, only that she's getting one. It's a win win for both of us. This year is a year to start some new traditions and honor the old ones for me. No matter how you are celebrating it, Blessed Yule! I hope your day is full of mirth and light. :)

Music for The Holidays

I am a bit late with this post. I had intended to finish it before Hanukkah was over but I failed by four days on that. However, I am posting the few songs I could find anyway. Last year I think I separated the songs for Yule and Christmas but this year I am just putting songs on here in a hodgepodge of religious goodness. In fact, this will probably be the most unorganized post of this kind I've ever done. But I feel like this is going to be a fun way of doing it. And I am kind of psyched because this will be the first time I have ever heard Hanukkah or Kwanzaa songs. So let's get our collective holiday groove on, shall we?
Lich'vod Hachanukkah by Chaim Nachman Bialik:

Santa Claus is Pagan Too by Emerald Rose:

Carol of the Bells

The Kwanzaa Song by William Scott:

Hanukkah, Oh Hanukkah by Theodore Bialik

Solstice Song by Denise Jordan Finley

God Rest You Merry Gentleman by Lorenna McKennitt

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Movies That Rock My December

First of all, Happy Hanukkah to those who celebrate it. :) 
It looks as though I will be copying and pasting the post from last year (told you I am a lazy blogger) on this subject. If you missed it last year, great. That means this won't be a deja vu experience for you. I am hoping that maybe, by next year, I'll have something new to add but this year my twelve favorite Christmas movies are the same. I could slip Rise of the Guardians in here because it was an awesome movie but to me it isn't a Christmas movie per say so it can't join the list. I know...I am a stickler for detail. haha 

Alright...without further ado...I present to you my twelve favorite Christmas movies ever complete with satirical commentary from the sarcastic Happy Hippie Witch...

1) A Christmas Carol 

This is my favorite Christmas story of all time. I have watched every version of the movie including the silent movie version (which is available on youtube: ). But my two all time favorite versions are the version with Patrick Stewart (which is still on youtube) and the newest version with Jim Carry. George C. Scott takes third place. I do not watch and cannot stand the modernized versions like Scrooged because to me A Christmas Carol is timeless. It has a moral, a great moral, and there is no reason to fuck with that.

The Silent Version from 1910: 
A Link to the Version with Patrick Stewart (if you want the 3D one, this site has that as well):

2) The Nutcracker

Until last year, my favorite version of this was actually the ballet version that they used to show on television when I was a kid. But now I have a new favorite. The version that came out in 2010 (yes, another 3D miracle I should not watch as an epileptic) is my new most favorite because it was well done, it had Nathan Lane (love him!), the 3D was just bad ass, and it was fun to watch.

The Latest (as far as I know) Ballet Version:

3) It's A Wonderful Life

This is my mom's second favorite (Prancer is her first) and when I was little I loved it. Then when I got to be about 12 I was sick of it. I mean, she did not wait until December to watch this movie. She watched it all...the fucking...time. So for about nine years I refused to look at it, I wanted no part of it, and I swore I would never watch it again. But then when I was twenty one I caught it on television on Christmas Eve and before I knew it, my eyes were glued to the timeless story of Mr. George Bailey and his struggle to figure out what life is all about. Like A Christmas Carol, it has a timeless meaning behind it and who doesn't have at least one good memory of watching this?

The Full Film (Watch while you can. Youtube tends to remove such things.)

 4) Santa Claus is Comin' to Town

When I was about five my great grandmother bought me the set of Christmas cartoons that had this and Frosty and all of those great cartoons from the '60's and '70's in them. I watched the hell out of those movies! As soon as Christmas break started every year, it was time to break out that great little box that contained the movies, get my sleeping bag, and curl up on the floor to watch them. During the holidays I think we all tend to miss those we love who have passed away and since Grandma Betty died in 1996, these movies took on a more sentimental meaning for me. Not only do I love them because they are great and I have a million fun memories of them, I also love them because they remind me of her. I don't know if she knew this but she actually gave me one of the greatest gifts I ever got because here I am, 19 years later, still watching these movies every year. I have passed them on to my baby sister and I will pass them on one day to my kids. And yeah, this one was my favorite (Ah, the love story of Kris and just gets me every time), it has the song I sang to Dakota while I was teaching her to walk (Put one foot in front of the other...and soon you'll be walking 'cross the floor...), and when I watch it I get as giddy as a six year old. 

5) Prancer

As I said earlier, this is my mom's favorite Christmas movie...mostly because she has a major thing for Sam Elliot (which is why I hate Roadhouse) and like It's A Wonderful Life, I spent many years hating this movie and swearing it off forever. But over the last couple of years I have found my love for this movie renewed. Certain scenes (especially the one where Jessica sleds through  the scary old woman's flower bed and first goes inside her house) bring back my emotions that I had watching them when I was little which is what really makes Christmas movies special in my opinion. I used to watch this and think that it was...magical. So it is only fitting that I should watch it now when I am all grown up and childhood magic (you know, the kind of magic that made EVERYTHING look better than it really was?) is lost to me in this life and try, for two hours, to get that feeling back.

6) Rudolf The Rednose Reindeer

First, I must say that I love Hermey. Yeah, I know the movie is about Rudolf and I love him too but Hermey is my elf! An elf that wants to be a dentist kind of sums up the way I felt as a child. I was a misfit, Hermey was a misfit, Rudolf was too...and then...and then...there was a whole friggin' LAND of misfits! For me, the message I got from this when I was a kid was pretty simple. So you happen to be a little weird and you don't fit in. So what? One day you will be a dentist or a toy with an owner or the leader of Santa's friggin' sleigh and that is pretty cool. :)

7) Frosty the Snowman

Frosty was my little brother's favorite of our Christmas movie collection when we were little. It was really cute (and I am glad he doesn't read this because he would probably kick my ass for sharing) because Ryan would cry every time he watched it when Frosty melted. Every single time. And then I would have to be a nice big sister (something I really wasn't when we were kids) and tell him that it was like the song said. He would be back again and it was alright and all that. So when I watch this movie, it makes me think of my little bubby (who now has a baby of his own) crying his eyes out at the temporary death of Frosty. How sweet is that?

Full Movie:

8) Bad Santa

There are some movies that are hilarious the first time you see them and then the more you watch them the more the hilariaty of the film fades until parts that once inspired a big ole' belly laugh only gets a small smile. Yeah...This is NOT one of those movies for me. The first time I saw it I laughed my ass off from start to finish. I haven't watched it yet this year but I will and when I do, I will laugh my ass off from start to finish. I will not watch it on television because it just lacks its huge dose of fucking hilarious censored. And this movie produced one of my favorite lines of all time. I bet you all know what I am going to say because I am me, right? Well, if you didn't guess it, here it is: "Fuck me, Santa...Fuck me, Santa...Fuckk...mmeeeee....Sannnttttaaaaa!!!!" hahahaha Whoever wrote this script, I tip my hat to you because you, my friend are a bigger perv than I am and that is almost impossible! ;)

9) Home Alone

If you were a child in the early '90's and you never slapped your face and screamed like your ass was on fire just once because of this movie....were you Amish? lol This is another one that makes me think of my brother because he loved this movie. The old man scared the shit out of him, though. But more than that, I loved it because I wanted what Kevin had. I wanted my family to forget me all by myself for days. It did not matter if it happened during Christmas...or Valentines Day...or even the 4th of July. I wanted to be home alone doing what I wanted and having a great time with that. This movie also has my favorite version of Carol of the Bells in it. I will only watch the first one, by the way, because I believe that if you lose your kid and leave the fucking state/country without them TWICE CPS should really come and investigate you and you should NOT be rewarded with a movie contract. hahahaha

Let me start with a confession: When I was little I was in love with Chevy Chase. I watched everything he was in and I did so with this dreamy look on my creepy little face because I thought he was adorable. So yeah, Christmas time meant people would show this movie and I could get a little dose of my beloved Chevy. Plus...ummm....this movie was funny as hell.

11) A Christmas Story

"You'll shoot your eye out!" Hell yeah you will but before shooting your eye out, you will have to put up with a sarcastic teacher, a little asshole school bully, a brother who eats dinner like a pig, your mother and father who believe that the word 'fuck' should not come from your mouth no matter how bad you fudge up while helping dad put a tire on, and a Santa Claus that is probably drunk on whiskey and banging the little bitchy elf. Sound like fun? Of course not. Ralphie is my dude. Ralphie did not have an ideal adventure trying to get one fucking thing...just one...that he wanted for Christmas. He had to put up with ALOT of bullshit, ya know? But he persevered  He did not say "Oh one wants to get it for me so I guess I want a sled". Hell no! He did everything he could possible do and in the end he got that Red Rider BB Gun. And yeah, he shot his fucking eye out with it. But I will bet you he went right back out the next day and shot the damned thing at any thing he could find in the back yard that might move. (Part two of the movie was cut out but it was the part where Ralphie developed his street rep as the baddest squirrel killer since those brothers on Swamp People) Why? Because Ralphie knew what he wanted, he did not take no for an answer, and in the end he got it so do I think he will let a friggin' BB in the eye keep him from what he wants to do? Hell no I don't! Ralphie for president!

12) The Nightmare Before Christmas

The Nightmare Before Christmas is one of my favorite movies of all time. I actually got it for Christmas when I was 7 (might have been 8) and from the first time I watched it I was enthralled...and in love. Jack Skellington is oh so sexy. Anyway, I am sure you are wondering why it is number 12 on this list if it is one of my favorite movies ever. Well, on my Halloween list of movies it is number one. But this is my Christmas list and while I do watch this movie every year at Christmas time and I do consider it a half-breed (Half Halloween-Half Christmas) the movies I named above are simply higher on this particular list because they are pure breeds and I only watch them all one time a year and they have only Christmas memories attached. 

Next week I will probably do my post on Yule and I will do a post on music for every December holiday I can find music for sometime between now and the Yule post. Should be an interesting experience. :) I hope you've enjoyed my list. I would love to know what movies get you all in the holiday spirit this time of year. I hope you all have a beautiful week and you remember to smile. :) 

I added youtube links where I could. However, all of these movies can be find on the site I gave under A Christmas Carol as far as I know. I have seriously slacked this year from my usual tradition of watching a different movie from the 1st-25th and the only one I have seen so far is A Christmas Carol (the Patrick Stewart version). However, it isn't often that things are removed on there so they should all be there just as they were last year. It's a safe site. I use it all the time.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Month of Celebration

I am giving you all a proper rant. Yes, that's right. I am not easing into it and I won't be gentle. Although this time of year was not always my favorite, I have come to love the month of December. I am more excited about the lights, the decorations, and the repeated visions of Santa at this point in my life than I ever was as a small child. But one thing seems to pop up every single year that bugs the hell out of me threatening to kill the damned joy of this, the one month of the year where nearly every religion on earth celebrates something. Now please, if you will, think about this for a moment. People from a variety of religions celebrating holidays all around the same time period that all, despite their different religious beliefs about the holidays, have one thing in common. They are all celebrations of hope, light, peace, and joy. So what's the problem, right? The problem is that instead of accepting that beauty of so many different paths, sending out good energy throughout this month, the people who follow different paths want to fight about who should "own" the month, over which holy day should rule the season. And I am here to tell you that it's total crap. Consider me your Ghost of Hanuyulekwanzamas (try saying that twice) as I attempt to bring back the spirit of December to you all....

Yes, it is true that the first celebrations on earth in the month of December north of the equator were performed by Pagans attempting to symbolically honor the sun in order to "lure" it back to the earth on the darkest night of the year, the Winter Solstice. Now, these particular Pagans knew that the sun was going to come back regardless of their rituals or lack thereof but their ancestors did not. I mean, imagine how scary winter must have been for prehistoric people, those wonderful cave dwelling ancestors of ours. Knowing nothing about science, about the relationship between earth and the sun that brought life to everything, and seeing the nights grow longer, the days colder...They were probably pretty freaked out. And when humans freak out we tend to turn to our concept of God for help, right? So it makes sense that they would do what they could to petition their protective energies to bring the sun back. From all of this Yule, the celebration of the Winter Solstice, was born. 

As we all know, a new religion rolled into town, so to speak, about two thousand years ago and as the followers of these new ways attempted to convert everyone in Europe to their way of thinking, they discovered that trying to take away the sacred days of the Pagan people was a terrible way to persuade them to leave a religion that was everything to them for a brand new way of thinking that was so different from all they knew. So these smart early Christians decided to compromise. They had a holy day already in place to celebrate the birth of their savior, Jesus Christ, who was the son of God. But this holy day was held in August (or July...isn't there some dispute about that? I don't remember...). Still, the concept was much the same. The birth of the sun/son that would bring light and hope to the earth was there, the celebration of the male aspect of deity was in place, and it was clear that this was one holy day that the different groups of Pagans from one end of Europe to the next would not give up. It was perfect. In exchange for their Goddesses the Pagans were given the beloved Virgin Mother of Jesus Christ. As for their beloved ancient holy days? The Spring Solstice became Easter and the Winter Solstice, their most sacred time for some Pagan sects, became Christ's Mass or Christmas. 

Have you ever noticed that the custom of decking out pine trees with lights and decorations had nothing to do with the birth of Christ even though it is one of the most recognized symbols of the holiday? That's because the custom goes back long before Christianity existed. The concept was simple. Take a tree that never "dies" and put the things you wish for yourself for the next year on it to draw it near you. By doing this you were honoring the eternal rebirth of the sun and you were taking in the luck of the new year. The lights? A ploy to bring the sun back of course. How about wreaths? I was Christian at one point in my life and I don't recall hearing about the Wise Men bringing wreaths to greet the newborn King. So where did they come from? They are a symbol of the wheel of the year as this was the time of the new year as well. Santa Claus? He has a long and rich history all over Europe. One story of a Santa-like figure even has the gift giver as a Goddess. That's right. Santa Claus is Pagan too....

BUT, my dear Pagan friends, why does any of this matter so much? The history is important of course and it should be remembered by all of us but that isn't what I am seeing every December. The burning times are over. We are free to worship on the longest night of the year without hiding behind the beliefs of others. We are free to put our stars atop our trees and smile at its symbolism. We are free to be who we are. And we are the ones who are always preaching tolerance, right? So what is it about this time of year, a time that is meant to be sacred and mirthful, that makes some among us act a damned fool? If Christianity had not adopted this time of year as a sacred time how much of our old customs do you think we would have today? The Yule/Christmas tree would not be shining bright in your living room, Santa would be banished to obscurity in the frozen land of the North Pole, no festive wreaths would grace your door, and I will guess that no one would get drunk and make out with a stranger just because they stumbled under mistletoe...Ok, perhaps that tradition could have been lost to us without being missed. But you get my point. There were certainly benefits we reap today from the early Christians' decision to have their holiest day just four days (or so..depends on the year and the Pagan path in question) after ours. Now they have theirs and we have ours and if we practiced what we preached we would stop the petty fight to assert our dominance when we should be co-existing as we have fought to do since the last of the witchcraft laws were repealed. 

To wrap up this boring history lesson of sorts: Christ is not the only reason for the season. Neither is the Winter Solstice. If you are wise, if you are tolerant, the reason for the season in general is peace, joy, and love. Certainly if German troops and English troops during World War I could set aside their differences to celebrate those sentiments together on Christmas there is no reason why all of us, regardless of our religions and our individual reasons for celebration this time of year, cannot do the same. The way that I see it, the protective force that watches over us does not care if you call it Jesus, Allah, Zeus, Athena, Isis, etc. It doesn't care if you name no names at all. The reason prayers are answered regardless of one's specific faith is because they are all valid paths toward the same energy. It is how an individual perceives it and the path a person chooses to walk toward it that creates our differences. But differences need not set us apart. And they shouldn't divide us so completely, have us fighting against one another over whose holiday is the most valid, the most sacred, when we could all instead put forth the energy of joy and goodwill toward all for one month. Imagine the things that could come of that. It's what our world needs and it is far more important to the greater good than arguing over who is right. Our December celebrations are connected for good or ill and that does not have to be a bad thing, folks.

In addition to this, I would like to thank those who do not get wrapped up in the religious arguments that seem to occur as soon as the calender rolls around to December 1st. This is especially true if you have a facebook. It's a bit hard not to scream in frustration from the posts that pop up constantly, isn't it? ;)

Happy Hanukkah, Blessed Yule/Winter Solstice, Merry Christmas, Happy Kwanza, and if I left out a holiday I apologize. May the season be blessed for everyone. May we all find some peace, some joy, and a big dash of love. And if you do find these things, be sure to pass it on. Smile at a stranger. It's always nice but I have found that on a cold winter's day with the snow flying and the holidays fast approaching, it seems to work more magic than usual. Strange but true. 

In the weeks to come I am going to attempt to re-publish the posts I did last year with the Christmas movies, Christmas music, and Yule songs. The movie post took FOREVER as I recall and I am just lazy enough to try this short cut this time around. If that doesn't work there is always copy and paste and my lazy ass will have to find the pictures again I think. Either way, my countdown to Yule and Christmas (I do not know much about the other holidays, I must confess, but I might round up some songs to celebrate Hanukkah and Kwanza as well if I can find some.) has begun and next week I will bring fun goodies to make up for this serious rant post. If I have offended anyone with my words here I am sorry because upsetting someone wasn't my plan. But if you got pissed off and then it made you think about the possibility that I might have a point, it was worth it to me. 

Have a beautiful week, my blogger friends, and remember to smile. :)