Fairy houses, hobbit houses, fairy calendars and fairy doors for your garden or home decor by Fairy Woodland
Fairy houses, hobbit houses, fairy calendars and fairy doors for your garden or home decor by Fairy Woodland Fairy houses, hobbit houses, fairy calendars and fairy doors for your garden or home decor by Fairy Woodland
Fairy houses, hobbit houses, fairy calendars and fairy doors for your garden or home decor by Fairy Woodland

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The Holly King

Winter Solstice 2008


Snow flakes large enough for fairies to ride float leisurely through the air to rest on bare alder branches, fir boughs, and of course my head. Snow is unusual enough here on the Oregon Coast that in my excitement I rushed out the door without regard to hat or gloves, only hurriedly donning a jacket under which to shelter the camera.The deer have already come down the path. There are three sets of tracks so it must have been the doe and her two young ones, who will come to the door looking for their daily apple treats soon.

The deer will have to wait; I am on a quest to catch the Holly King, God of the Waning Year, in a regal white robe.The end of his reign nears; at Yule, the Winter Solstice, his brother the Oak King, the Sun King, God of the waxing year, will be born and the rule of the Holly King overthrown. Rebirth, growth, hope, new beginnings are poised to arrive with the Turning of the Year, but I have barely settled into the rest, inner reflection, and learning the time of the Holly King brings. Am I ready to let him go? At least I want to capture his image.

The holly and the ivy
When they are both full grown
Of all the trees that are in the wood
The holly bears the crown.


A song we're familiar with, but this adaptation of the chorus perhaps not:

Oh, the rising of the sun
And the running of the deer
The shining of the winter stars
As the longer days draw near.


The Holly King has been leading us to this point since the Summer Solstice, when he began stealing a little more light from each day. Now the days have shriveled to a bare flicker. The sun sets in the middle of the afternoon and frozen nights are endless. Yes, this is an opportunity for quiet, inner reflection but it feels more as though we have been left huddling in the dark with the outlines of skeleton trees, no flowers, and only the heartiest of birds darting thankfully to the feeders. Has the sun abandoned us to the night?


Welcome to the Winter Solstice, where the dark triumphs - but only for a moment. This is a turning point; the reign of the Holly King will end, the days will grow longer again, as the Oak King, who brings the light, is quietly born from the womb of the dark night. At his birth, he is only a small spark, but we have known in our bones since always that light, no matter how tiny, means life.

And so we have magical tales of shining stars, of bright angels, of the birth of hope and new beginnings to sustain us through the fierce storms of January, yet to come.The fires we light on the hilltops, the Yule logs set ablaze in our homes are more than a ritual of ignorant people to appease the gods and bring back the sun. We string lights on our homes, our mantles, and the tree in our living room as a recognition of the fire of spirit, the light in our hearts, and as a statement of survival - the ultimate hope that I have, inside of me, the fire and the light to continue life. That my own internal light may call forth the light of the universe to bless my life, my family, my people. That I may walk through the gateway of night and find, once more, the sun.


In lighting the fires, in stringing the lights, we do more than stave off the darkness, even more than honor the sun. We also stand with fierce courage to say to the darkness, You may come this far but no further! We have given the darkness its due, we have watched it leach the light from our lives for as long as we had to; now the long night is over, we can tentatively bring our own lights back from hiding, and let the new days begin.

This Turning of the Year, the returning of the light, this most hopeful of all days,has been celebrated across cultures and throughout millennia so, however you choose to participate, you will be part of an ancient tapestry. Whether you float old ideas and sorrows out to sea on paper mache boats with candles, make a Yule wreath to honor the sacred circle of life, death and rebirth, find a Yule log and burn it in your fireplace, or join the Fairies in ringing bells on Solstice morning to welcome back the sun, remember that this is a festival of inner rebirth. No matter how dark it seems, how completely dead the world appears, nature - including the holly and the ivy and the oak - teaches us that there is always rebirth.


Posted on: 2009-01-03 Comments (0) Add comment

Samhain – the Harvest fires

Welcome to the fires of the New Year and the Three Nights of Summer’s End. Samhain, [pronounced SOW-in (Ireland), SOW-een (Wales) or SAV-en (Scotland)] marks the end of the old and the beginning of the new, linking us with the world of spirit at the turning of the year. October 31, when we celebrate Halloween, is the last night of the old year. November 2 is the first night of the New Year and the night of November 1 is the night between that belongs to no time. Our modern Halloween stems from the Celtic Samhain. It is a sacred time, when the veil between this world and the Otherworld is so thin that the dead can walk with us and warm themselves at our hearths. It is also the time when some mortals, especially shamans and poets, are able to find entrance to the Otherworld through special doorways that open only at Samhain.

More on this special time in a moment, but first we want to introduce a new Fairy Woodland creation, designed to help train our mortal, consensus reality-locked brains to process our eyes’ ability to see through the veil into Faerie.


Faerie Wise – The Kit is more than an ordinary craft project. It is designed as a magical gateway that can take you to Faerie. The Kit is designed to help you train your senses to be Faerie Wise – to feel the presence of the mystical, to see through the veil to the Realm of Faerie as it exists all around you.  Seeing is the first and crucial step to walking across the threshold.

We’ve all been taught to fit our experience of the world into a limited frame. By creating a magical door and peaking through it to meditate on images of the Otherworld, you can stretch your ability to “see” outside the normal modes of perception.  Learn all about it here.

Back to the Turning of the Year.

BOO!


What strange face is lurking in your mirror at this closing of the year?

This is a time of transformation from summer to winter, from the time of growth and bounty above ground, to the time of storing the harvest in the root cellar below ground. Although the seasons in Faerie are not quite so pronounced, nature in the Otherworld follows the cycles of life as well, so the process of moving from outside to inside, from exuberant growth to nurturing dreams affects the Fairies’ way of life just as it does ours.

There are many choices that need to be made at this time of transition from endings to beginnings. For us in the modern, mortal world, the decisions are often metaphorical but there are important realities behind the metaphors. Of the crops that you have grown this past year, which do you want to put in the root cellar to feed yourself and your family through the winter, and which do you save as seed to plant in the spring? Of the animals birthed last spring, which can you afford to feed through the winter and use to breed for next year, and which ones will feed and clothe you and your family through the cold time?


As we see the fields of dead cornstalks waiting for harvest or the brilliant colors of leaves in their last moments before becoming compost, the turning of the year and the movement from life to death is unmistakable. That the dying leaves should grace us with such beauty has always struck me as a Fairy thing.

There are many rituals from around the world to mark this time and to honor the energy it brings to our lives. The rituals we know and suggest to you all center around endings and beginnings and acknowledging the possibility of the existence of a world beyond our usual awareness. So, on these three nights of Summer's End, set a place at the table for your ancestors who want to visit; leave food outside your door for other spirits so that they might bless your home for the coming year. Make a bonfire outside, throw into it everything you want to clean out of your life from the year passed; in the morning, bring coals inside to start your "hearth fire" for the New Year. If you have nowhere to make a fire, turn off all the lights in the house, light a candle and use the flame to burn (carefully!) small scraps of paper on which you've written what you want to dispose of. In the morning, light a candle to welcome the New Year and keep you warm through the coming Winter. With the veil between the worlds so thin, it's a great time for divination, so take out runes or tarot cards. As you or your children walk the streets in costumes, remember that the real spirits and the Fae are walking with you.

INSPIRATION FOR THE NEW YEAR


In honor of the transition and the coming year, we bring you Faerie Wise, the Fairy Woodland calendar for 2009. We offer you two versions this year - The first one is "The Woods" with the magical graphics you have come to expect and a separate booklet for the stories for each month.


The second version, new this year, is called "The Houses," which features the Fairy Houses and their stories.


Posted on: 2008-11-01 Comments (0) Add comment


Turning Point
Winter Solstice - The Birth of the Sun




In the soft silence of new fallen snow, on this shortest day of the year, you follow the distant hint of bells through the gateway between the fir trees and enter the Green Wood. They're called "evergreens" because they keep their verdant coats all year and today, with other trees and bushes only bare sticks, your still-green friends remind you that life is always all around you and, even in the darkest night, the light will return. So you ask permission of the trees and prune a few branches from fir, pine, and holly, leave a gift of thanks for the forest, and rush home with your treasures to weave them with red ribbons and colored balls to adorn your mantle and your door.

Newgrange:Winter Solstice Magick

    


It's unclear how long we mortals have been honoring the cycles of life, death, and rebirth represented by the movement of the sun's path in the sky. Around 3200 BC, the indigenous people of Ireland built Newgrange, a huge monument aligned to the Winter Solstice. Newgrange is constructed so that on that day the rays of the rising sun shine through a small opening above the mound's door, fly down the passageway, and illuminate the central chamber. The event lasts for about 17 minutes and is the only time of the year the sun penetrates into the heart of the mound. Was this a way to capture the sun to call it back to the winter-dark land? A moment when the spirits of those who had died during the year could follow the golden road to the Otherworld? A simple astronomical observatory? Archeologists have many theories. When we ask the Fairies, they whisper through the downy snowfall that it's a good idea to honor the cycles of life, death, and rebirth, and to be in tune with the planetary movements that guide our lives. Enigmatic, as always. (This year for the first time the entrance of the sun into Newgrange will be streamed live on the internet. Find out more here.)




Stand still for a moment - and celebrate

On the night of December 21st, when the Northern Hemisphere of the Earth is leaning as far as it possibly can from our source of light and warmth, the sun will appear to stand still. And then the sun will be reborn and begin its journey back to bring light and life to all living things. (Don't forget that our friends in the Southern Hemisphere will be out dancing in the fields of mid-summer!) To honor that turning point, you might want to create a ritual to share with those who warm your heart. Some suggestions:
    --Hang a Yule wreath to honor the circle of life, death, rebirth and the rebirth of the sun.
    --Light a fire in your fireplace or even outside; or light a candle. Focus on the flame and acknowledge that the fire of your life is inside you and pledge that in the coming year you will touch others with the warmth and inspiration of your light.
    --Give thanks for the rebirth of the sun, for the miracle of your own birth, and allow the dreams that are sleeping within you to be born.
    --Tell stories, sing songs, adorn your home with light and celebrate the miracle of being born out of the darkness into the light.

From our** hearts to yours, this holiday season:

May you have Fairy Bells tinkling in your ears,
iridescent lights dazzling your eyes,
and the enchanted songs of Faerie
echoing in your heart this Winter Holiday
and through the coming year.


(**If you want to meet the whole Fairy Woodland crew,
scroll to the end of this newsletter)

*****************************************************************
NEWS
from the FAIRY WOODLAND
Announcing
Fairy Woodland Fairy House #1000

As those of you who watch the website regularly have undoubtedly noticed, the Fairy House numbers have exceeded 1000. That's because, a few weeks ago, John built Fairy Woodland Fairy House #1000, "Re-membering Faerie." It's on display through Sunday, January 27, 2008 in Rockland County, NY as part of "Faery Tales and Tiny Treasures," the 32nd annual Miniature and Dollhouse Show sponsored by the Historical Society of Rockland County. We'll have pictures and story on the Fairy Woodland website soon but, in the meantime, here's a peek.



Speaking of the Fairy Woodland website: Just in case you haven't noticed, each house in the catalog now has a button that says "Tell me the House's story." Click it for an audio version and let Bridget read you a bedtime story.

Last minute holiday shopping
There's still time to order magical Fairy Woodland creations and have them arrive by Christmas Eve.

For UPS ground (normal shipping) delivery to the East Coast and South, we need to ship by Monday, Dec. 17.
To the middle part of the country (e.g MN, IL, TX) we need to ship by Tuesday, Dec. 18.
From CO to S. Calif, the magic date is Wed., Dec. 19.
For international shipment, any order placed now will arrive in plenty of time for the Winter Solstice, 2008.
There is always UPS 3 day but the larger the package, the more expensive that gets. We have in past years attempted to use Priority Mail for last minute shipments to the East Coast with mixed success. Call us if you have any questions.

Gift Ideas

           

WinterTree Castle                             2008 Calendar


If it's too late to ship, don't forget
Fairy Woodland-Gift Certificates!!!

We can e-mail the certificate for you to print out.
Deadline: 3pm, PST, Dec. 24.

BRIGHT BLESSINGS TO YOU AND YOURS
FROM ALL OF US AT
FAIRY WOODLAND

This seems like the perfect time to introduce you all to "all of us."
Bridget and John's stories are on the website.
Here is the rest of the crew of artists who help create the Enchanted World of Fairy Woodland.

Dusty Hicks, Senior Elf, Wood Wizard, and Official Furniture Maker to the Fairies, tells us he was created in a strawberry field on the Oregon coast about three and a half decades ago. He sprouted like a spring mushroom (perhaps a little cuter) and has been enjoying the beauty of the natural world ever since he can remember. He loves bringing beauty into the world and finds building fairy houses and and other magical creations a very satisfying and enjoyable way to spend his days.He is a gifted carver, a master of fine detail, an exceptional Fairy House roofer, and the king of giant bubbles. Dusty has a natural affinity for the Otherworld and creates wonderful maps for us all to follow.

Sierra Sperling, Principal Pixie. Sierra, the youngest of our crew, was born into the world of Faerie and found her way to the Woodland at a very young age. She practices artistry in many realms, including clothing design and organic, healthy food. She hears the Fairy voices tell the stories and with her nimble fingers weaves them into exquisite creations. Whether her hair is purple or orange, Sierra's brilliance and flash is an inspiration to everyone in the studio. She is the mistress of the tilt, the twisted, and the tangle, and her sweet laughter enchants mortal and Fairy alike.

Kris Parker, Elf at Large. Kris tells us he was raised by bears in a close-knit pack and groomed to study art and politics in the mortal world. He was tricked into working for trolls until he was rescued by the Fairies who whisked him away to the Woodlands. He now spends his time listening to their voices and helping to build homes for them that reflect the beauty the Fairies have brought to his life. In Faerie, Kris has discovered that there are other shapes besides a square and a rectangle; he can find a solution to most problems and the Fairies are honing his ability to think "out of the box."

Karen McCrae, Ambassador, Fairy/Human Relations. Karen met her first fairy in 1984 on Inis Meáin off the west coast of Ireland. Since that time, she has been very fortunate to be able work in areas that focus on spirituality and the environment. During the summer she works with the local farmers market, building community connections with local farmers, crafters and artists. Her family is happy to live with the Salmon Berry Clan of Fairies on the Oregon Coast. Karen runs the Fairy Woodland office, keeps Bridget organized, keeps John from forgetting what he's supposed to be doing, packs the Fairy Houses, and sends them off to their new homes.

Joren Rushing, Principal Minstrel. Joren was born an artist and has spent his life creating beauty in the world around him with his voice and his guitar. When Joren plays, the Fairies gather to listen and to dance on the strings. (They're particularly delighted when Joren's Goddess wife, June, comes to sing.) Joren has skilled hands, eye, ear, and heart, all guided by the play of Fairy voices. He hears the music of the twigs and brings his intuitive sensitivity to the creation of enchanting Fairy Houses. When the Fairies want something special, they talk to Joren.


Posted on: 2007-12-20 Comments (1) Add comment
The Turning of the Year

Samhain

Brittle, bleached corn stalks stand like forgotten sentries in the garden while the alders send faded yellow leaves to make a carpet on the path through the woods. All the trees are quickly shedding the glorious raiment of red and gold they have worn the past few weeks, their newly naked branches outlined against the sky. The rains have returned, the days grow shorter, the nights colder, and long V-shaped lines of geese honk their way south.It's time to gather nuts, apples, quince and other last gifts from the natural world and tuck everything away in cold, dark hollows. Samhain has arrived, marking the turning of the year.

Samhain [pronounced SOW-in (Ireland), SOW-een (Wales) or SAV-en (Scotland) is the ancient Celtic celebration marking the end of Summer, and the beginning of Winter and the New Year. There is much evidence to suggest that the Celtic ways of marking the year and relationship to the earth were learned in Faerie and, although probably no longer an exact representation, are as close as we can come to the rituals and ways of the Otherworld. Holidays ("holy days") in Faerie begin at sunset, in the "going within" part of the circle, so Samhain, whichin modern times is observed on November 1, begins the night before - what we celebrate as Halloween. [It is said that the "old" date for marking Samhain, the one used in Faerie, is when the sun reaches 15 degrees Scorpio.]

What has, in the mortal world, been converted into a time of costume parties, witches, black cats, bats, and overdoses of candy for kids, is quite different in its Faerie origins. There, Samhain is the final harvest festival of the year, marking the time to shift focus from nurturing life above the ground to dreaming with the sentience within and below. It's time to travel the root roads, nurture seeds, have long chats with earthworms and dream with the bears, the frogs, and other hibernating creatures.

Any transition is inherently a time of power because "reality" is not as firmly anchored during the shift. Dawn and dusk are seen as "between" times, neither day nor night, the crack between the worlds. And so the change of seasons, being a much larger transition, carries even greater potential power. During Samhain, the veil between this world and the realm of spirits grows thin enough for those who have passed through it to the other side to return and visit and, it is said, the doors to the Faerie Realm are opened to those who seek them.


The Witch in the Wood

So this Halloween (Hallowed Eve), carve a turnip or a pumpkin, put it in your window with a light to welcome the spirits. Set a place at the table for your ancestors who want to visit; leave food outside your door for other spirits so that they might bless your home for the coming year. Leave an apple on your bedroom windowsill for Father Deer so he will take you to the boatman who rows you across the lake to the island where you and your loved ones who have crossed over can meet again. Make a bonfire outside, throw into it everything you want to clean out of your life from the year passed; in the morning, bring coals inside to start your "hearth fire" for the new year. If you have no where to make a fire, turn off all the lights in the house, light a candle and use the flame to burn (carefully!) small scraps of paper on which you've written what you want to dispose of. In the morning, light a candle to welcome the new year and keep you warm through the coming Winter. With the veil between the worlds so thin, it's a great night for divination, so take out runes or tarot cards. As you or your children walk the streets in costumes, remember that the real spirits and the Fae are walking with you.

For Winter Holidays

Life swirls quickly from Samhain to Mid-Winter, Winter Solstice, Yule, Christmas, and whatever gift giving celebrations we mortals create to bring warmth and light to Winter's cold and dark. We have two suggestions for those of you who want to get an early start on the season:

Through Faerie Doors
The 2008 Fairy Woodland Calendar to keep you in touch with Fairy magic throughout the year


And the Fairy WinterTree Castle
to encourage the Fairies to move into the midst of your celebrations.


As your footsteps crackle through the last fallen leaves, we at Fairy Woodland wish you a healthy transition from Summer's end to the renewal of the new year. And on the eve of Samhain, when the spirits and denizens from many realms roam free, we wish you the Bright Blessings of Faerie to surround and shield your home and bless your hearth.

Bright Blessings from all of us at Fairy Woodland:
Bridget Wolfe
John Crawford
Karen McCrae
Dusty Hicks
Sierra Sperling



Posted on: 2007-10-31 Comments (0) Add comment
 
A Harvest of Color

The Fairy Woodland Autumn Newsletter


 


The light of Autumn is like no other. All of our green growing friends seem to have spent the last three months storing the brilliant light of the summer sun and are now, with the delicate touch of a Fairy brush, releasing it in one huge blaze of color. Red tomatoes, pomegranates, apples, and maple leaves. Orange pumpkins, golden, glowing aspens, purple grapes, and the last of the huckleberries are all shouting the glorious colors of life.


This is the harvest time, an Ingathering, a time to reap what we have sown in the spring and tended through the summer.

It’s the time to pour simmering sauce into hot jars, to watch the magic of bitter, golden quince turning bright red and sweet. (Even the Fairies are in awe of that process.) It’s the time to steam up the kitchen, to fill the freezer, the pantry, and the root cellar with foods that have absorbed the sun, so we can feast on golden light during the coming dark months.


Cultures around the world have honored the harvest season since always, with most traditions focused around the Autumnal Equinox (Sept. 23, this year). Whatever the culture or chosen date, the core of the observance is always giving thanks. 

To honor your own harvest, we suggest a feast – popcorn and caramel apples, fresh, hot cider, loaded with cinnamon, new made wine. Share your bounty with the Fairy Folk and give thanks to the Goddess, the Green Man, the Earth Mother, and, of course, the Fairies for all the gifts. As part of your ritual you might try scattering seeds for the birds and, if you can find corn sheaves, weave them into a man-shaped effigy and burn it to release the corn spirit. Spread the ashes on your garden to bless the soil for next year.


Autumn Fairy Activity

The Fairies here at Fairy Woodland are busy with all the tasks of Autumn as well. We’ve seen large balls of spider thread hooked on holly leaves and mounds of grass seed tucked in tree hollows with dried blackberries, huckleberries, and even a few cherry tomatoes.
 

The dandelion fluff in the meadow all seems to be drifting to one mossy spot under the low hanging, sheltering boughs of the old plum tree and magically snuggling up in a fern protected nook. Between the moss and the dandelion fluff, some Fairy clan should be very comfortable this winter.

All of which has caused us to wonder anew about the relationship of Faerie to our world. It’s a much debated mystery, the key buried somewhere deep in the mists into which Faerie retreated long ago.  We’ve always assumed that the Otherworld, including Faerie, exists on a more or less parallel reality, with doorways (usually hidden) between the realms. If that’s true, are the seasons the same on the other side of the gateway? And, if they are, why are the Fairies gathering stores for the winter on this side? Won’t they need those items in their home?
 

Although we have no ready answers to those questions, we do have some suspicions after many years of exploring the territory. What’s really needed is more research, which requires ways to travel between the realms. Just by chance,

The Fairy Woodland Calendar for 2008 is here.
Doorways to Faerie
offers openings and advice for the journey.




Are you seeking an entrance into Faerie? What would it look like? Is there a door to knock on? A bell to ring? You can, of course, leave a gift at the door of your Fairy House on each full moon until the Fairies invite you in, but openings into the Otherworld are also everywhere you turn, in every wood and grove, in each Earth place that remembers the wild.


To help you imagine what the doorways might look like, we offer you the images in this calendar, each of which have at least one opening to the Otherworld. Every gateway is paired with a Fairy House for the guardian who keeps the doorway open and listens for the footsteps of those who seek the way. If you look very closely, you’ll find the faces of many denizens of Faerie looking back at you. Read the tale each guardian has to tell, then allow your imagination to be taken by the hand and shown the pathway.

Besides the cover, there are twelve exquisite mythic art images by John Curtis Crawford, each with a Doorway to Faerie. Our hope is that, as you spend 30 days looking at each month’s image, that your inner sight will be tuned more clearly to the subtle vibrations of Faerie Doors and that you will begin to find them more easily in the physical world around you. Whether you’ll be able to enter is another question but the calendar has some suggestions about that as well.

More Fairy Woodland Studio News


We’ve built Fairy House #1,000!
(photos in the next newsletter)


That seems like a milestone and worth celebrating to us but the Fairies just look at us, roll their eyes and shrug their shoulders. “What’s this thing you have about numbers?” they want to know. The Fairies may not see this as an occasion but the studio helper elves thought it was worth a dance around the meadow.

Speaking of whom, we’d like to introduce you to the wonderful artists we call the Studio Elves who help us create the Fairy Woodland magic but that will have to wait until the next newsletter.

We’re so excited! And working overtime to get ready to meet our
East Coast friends at

FaerieCon,
The International Faerie Convention
Philadelphia
October 12 – 14.

We’ll be on panels and taking part in roundtable discussions as well as being in the booth to talk to you about Fairy Houses and the mystical process of offering hospitality to visitors from the Faerie Realm. Besides, there’s a

Good Faeries Ball

Bad Faeries Ball

and Midnight Movies, so

COME PLAY WITH US!

And meet everyone on the “Who’s Who” list of Faerie authors and artists.

And most of all, we’d love to meet you.



Posted on: 2007-09-27 Comments (0) Add comment

 

Drinking the Sun


They stand in a circle on the hilltop, arms outstretched, heads tilted back, palms and faces raised to the sky. The sun hangs directly overhead and, for this moment in time, not moving, sends the full force of solar energy pouring down on those who stand below. Their hands and faces drink the light and heat, absorb the rays, establish the connection from which they will draw energy for the next six months.

This is the moment of the Summer Solstice, the moment (in the Northern hemisphere) when the position of the sun, in relationship to the earth is farthest north from the equator. It is the moment of most light, the moment when light rules the world. Tomorrow the sun will turn his face away, just a little, and begin his journey south. Even though it is the height of summer (mid-summer, in fact) the days will begin to shorten again beginning tomorrow. So today we celebrate as our brothers and sisters have since always. From Stonehenge to Teotihuacan, in every ancient culture, our ancestors honored the Lord of Light and the growth of his seed in the Goddess as they lifted up their hearts in celebration of the fertility of the Earth and the wonder of life.

This is the time when the Oak King falls and transfers his power to the Holly King who will now reign until the Winter Solstice, when the Oak King will return. It is a time to build fires on the hilltops to honor the Sun, to dance and sing and spread joy and be filled with the light of love. It is a time of sweetness, of playfulness, of divination, and passion.

"Solstice" is Latin for "sun stands still." The event is so named because at the time when the sun has traveled to its northernmost point, it appears to the naked eye as though it is stationary in its journey. From this point we begin the march to Winter and the dark times, but not yet, not today. Today the sun is life-giving, apples and berries are galloping towards ripeness, and the harvest is still ahead.

The Fairies at Fairy Woodland have strung hammocks everywhere and we find them lounging and dreaming at all times of the day and night. Seeds have sprouted, fawns have been born, baby birds have pecked their way out of their eggs, and the sun has found its highest point in the swing of the pendulum, so there is a brief time for the Fairies to relax. Once the forces of life have been set in motion and given the food and guidance to grow, the Fairies can rest for a bit, knowing that some things take care of themselves. Soon the harvest will begin and there will be much work to do but for now, it's time to soak up the sun, absorb the warmth, spread gossamer wings, splash in sparkling waters, and dance in the long summer nights.

COME PLAY WITH US


The Fairies will gladly abandon their hammocks to accompany us to the 2007 FaerieWorlds Festival happening July 21 & 22 just outside of Eugene, Oregon. They are extremely excited to gather with so many other Fairies and Fairy Friends for a weekend of music, laughter, and high play. If you will be or can be in the area, please make plans to join us and, if you are planning to be there and don't yet have tickets, word is the festival is close to selling out so don't wait to buy tickets at the door because there may not be any available. We'll have a big booth and would love to have you visit us there.
Find out all about it here.

Also, for those of you on the East Coast, we'll be at FaerieCon, the International Faerie Convention, in Philadelphia, October 12-14. In fact, we've been asked to build a Fairy Village for the event. Look for more information on theFaerieCon website soon. The gathering promises to be an exciting experience with many well-known Fairy artists and wonderful events.


NEW CREATIONS

Whether dreaming in a hammock or sitting around a ceremonial hilltop fire, this is also a wonderful time to tell stories. For those of you who haven't read it on the website, we want to share with you the legend of

The Enchanted Fairy Village of Filaree


As the early morning mists take a deep breath and lift from the mossy village trails, the music begins. First, bells, a rolling, silver, tinkle, drifting on the winds; then the haunting, dancing, song.of a flute. The musician this morning is the Master Bard and chief memory keeper. He has greeted the day with his flute and the evening with his tales since the village was first settled. He sits on a small stool next to the well, in the center of the village, his friend the Great Blue Heron perched above him. As the last notes of the Morning Song drift away with the breeze, the Heron utters a raucous squawk and launches himself into the dawn.

This is the Enchanted Fairy Village of Filaree which rests at the edge of the cloud veil that hovers just beyond the reach of most human consciousness. When the Master Bard first settled here in his youth, his human friends often strolled across the bridge and met him at the well. Together, they listened to the songs sung by the enchanted waters of the well and learned tales of the history of Earth and stars, of the birth of Fairy and humankind. They sang the songs of dawn or dusk, studied animal languages and medicinal herbs, and debated ideas over tea.

For many generations of human lives, the friendship with Faerie continued. Then came a time of forgetting, when new generations of humans were more concerned with the events of their world than with the wisdom of Faerie. After a while, only the Druids and other followers of magic were able to find the bridge and the Land of Faerie retreated further and further into the mists of the Otherworld. The Fairies of the Village of Filaree, who had lived closest to the border, fought to stay near the human world they loved. They consulted the Spirits of the spring that fed the well and together they enchanted the village, allowing it to remain at the edge of the mists, just a blink of an eye from their human friends.

They have kept a few of the pathways open, daily making the journey between worlds to care for the Earth and all her children, whether green, furred, feathered, finned, or human. They always believed the day would come when humans would again seek the ways of magic; when they would again believe in the existence of Faerie.

Is that day here? The Fairies of Filaree believe the time has come. So they are sending reflections of their Village out into the human world, to act as anchors for the ancient connections between the two realms. If we believe, if we give them a home in our world, if we recognize their faces in the trees, their voices on the winds, they will show us the way forward into the magic of Faerie in our time.


The Fairy Houses of Filaree are available only from authorized Fairy Woodland retailers. (You can find a list here.) The village well, however, will now be available on our website to help the Fairies reach more humans and create pathways from the Otherworld. The well is not only the center of the village, it's also a gateway. Here's the story of the Whooshing Well:

The Whooshing Well
from the Enchanted Fairy Village of Filaree


With the first light of dawn, the Fairies of Filaree begin arriving at the well. Some come for pure, clear, water but most come like commuters to a subway station, waiting for their transportation to work. This enchanted well is not only Filaree's main source of water, it is also an express gateway through which the Fairies Whoosh to the world of humans. The underlying spring whispered its magic to the Fairies who built the village and created the well to serve as a gateway though the mists. The water itself nourishes and heals; it makes a powerful surface for seeing into the future. A few drops, when tossed on dishes or a window, will instantly clean any surface. In the water is hope, love, compassion, and curiosity. The bucket leaks so that the magical water is always shared with the earth, and the well itself has an echo - the sounds of Faerie bounce around until they find their way through the gateway into our world. Occaisonally a young Fairy will close her eyes, whisper softly, and throw a rose petal into the well. Sometimes even Fairies have wishes.

The replica of the Whooshing Well the Fairies have helped us create for use in our world comes in two versions:
1) with a solid bottom to set on a flat surface or
2) mounted on a regular mason jar rim which screws on to any size mason jar which can then be dropped into a flower pot or other container and filled with water to make a working well.

    
However you choose to follow the Queen of Summer, may she stand with you in the Sun's light, embrace you, and fill your life with her bounty.

Posted on: 2007-06-27 Comments (0) Add comment

Faerie Thyme


The Fairy Woodland
Spring Newsletter



Before and After May Day

Woodland Springs, the home of Fairy Woodland, sits at the edge of a gateway into Faerie so our flow of life is often tuned to the Otherworld.  Human and Faerie realms parallel each other most closely in the movement of the seasons and the cycles of the moon.

We thought we were quite in harmony with the flow of both realms when we discovered that May had snuck up on us.  It seems like only a few days ago when Spring strolled in the door, filled with the exuberance of a young stag and wrapped in winds warm as a baby’s breath.  We were released from hibernation to find daffodils sending green shoots bursting from their underground homes and buds on apple trees ready to pop. 

We had no sooner settled into the luxury of having enough light for an evening walk in the woods when we realized that Spring had galloped through the days while we dawdled in pools of sunshine, gratefully warming our wings.  Everywhere we looked, blossoms and new leaves reached for the sun.  A pair of pigmy nuthatches (definitely Fairy sized birds!)  built a nest at the entrance to the studio, and before we could say “May Day!”, Beltane, (May Day eve) arrived, heralding the approach of Queen Summer. We haven’t seen her yet, but the signs are clear:  Days are longer than nights, the first wide-mouthed hatchlings are peeking out of nests, the whales are returning to their northern homes, and the Elderberry leaves have wrapped the Fairy Grove in emerald hues.

In honor of the season, we decided it was time to do a little spring cleaning and found that some of our Fairy friends, instead of dreaming their way through Winter, have been very busy inside our house.  They’ve colonized new territory – our library!  We discovered that some of our books have been transformed into Fairy residences.  We spotted a door on the spine of a book and windows on adjoining ones.



We knocked on the door, got no answer, so decided to venture a peek.  We gently nudged open the door, then fetched a flashlight since it was dark inside. All we could see was a table, chairs, and a stairway leading to what must be a second story.
 
 
We watched carefully for any sign of occupants but the book house seemed uninhabited.  


We left a small letter by the door, inquiring about this phenomenon.



The reply we received told us the Fairies who had built this home had read everything of interest on this shelf and had moved on to build a house amidst other books.  The Fairies tell us that there are many of their kind who study the human world and gather information by reading about it.  Clever Fairies – what better way to read than to live inside a book?
 
We found two others within a week, each with a tiny sign on the door to let us know that the occupants had moved on and we were now free to offer these book houses to other humans who want to sponsor a family of Fairies to come and read the books on their shelves.   Although the Fairies don’t seem to have trouble reading a book they’ve colonized, once they’ve made a book into a home it’s impossible for anyone else to read it.  So we’ve been frantically haunting local used book shops to find new books for them to colonize, since we would like to keep at least some of our books intact for us to read.
 
In the process of dealing with this phenomenon, we are coming across books we acquired long ago and had forgotten to read, so while we are tracking Fairy migrations we are also enjoying a wondrous rediscovery of old friends. It’s also been intriguing to see what books and combinations of books they’ve chosen to colonize.  What do you suppose An Outline of History  and Electronic Tables  have to do with each other?  We are trying to understand the logic but then again, these are Fairies and human logic is not a strong operating principle. If you are interested in participating in the mystery of the Literary Fairy Exchange Program and sponsoring a Fairy family to come and live on your bookshelves, please visit our website for details.



May 31st is a

Blue Moon

There is considerable disagreement about what constitutes a “blue moon.”  Some say the color of the moon, which can be caused by smoke or dust particles from forest fires or volcanic eruptions.  Early editions of the Farmer’s Almanac count it as the third full moon of four in a fixed season usually containing three. Astrologers define it as the second full moon in an astrological sign, but popular convention celebrates the event on the second full moon in the same month – which will happen in the Western hemisphere on May 31st.  (In Europe and points East, because of time shifts, it will be June 1st when the moon is full, so they will have a “blue moon” at the end of June when the moon is full again.)
 
Since the Fairies love any reason for a festival, especially one having to do with a full moon, they celebrate all versions of “blue moons.”  The full moon holds the fullness of the Mother Goddess and her wisdom – the Blue Moon elevates the Goddesses power to another level.  Seeing the moon’s face a second time in a month is a powerful light and a good time to do ritual.  Take a dark bowl filled with water into a clearing where you can catch the reflection of the moon in the water.  Gaze into the moon’s reflection, let your eyes soft focus, and send a greeting to the Fairies – an invitation to them to come and dance with you.  Sit quietly, and listen.  You will hear distant music, like tiny bells, and the soft flutter of wings.  Keep your eyes focused on the moon in the water – the Fairies will answer your questions and bring you Bright Blessings.
 
Don’t forget to bring an offering of food (especially chocolate!) and always remember to dance.


New Elves on Fairy Woodland staff


In addition to Dusty Hicks, who has been with us for 3 years and is Roofer Extraordinaire and official Chief Furniture Maker to the Fairies, we've added two wonderful new Elves to the staff.  In the studio with John is Joren Rushing who is learning roofing and Fairy Treehouse Kit construction.  The Fairies are delighted because Joren is a musician and they intend to whisper songs to him.  Working with Bridget is Coretta, whose organizational skills have Bridget dancing for joy.  In addition to administrative duties, Coretta will be responsible for shipping and her skills as a photographer will be put to good use as a backup for John in photographing the Fairy Houses and other products for the web.   Now there's a chance that Bridget will finally have time to finish the Fairy House book!

We wish you warm breezes, soft rains, bright rays of sunshine, and abundant nurturing
for all the dreams growing in your life.


 
Bright Fairy Blessings from all of us at
Fairy Woodland.


Posted on: 2007-05-08 Comments (0) Add comment

Fairy houses, hobbit houses, fairy calendars and fairy doors for your garden or home decor by Fairy Woodland
Fairy houses, hobbit houses, fairy calendars and fairy doors for your garden or home decor by Fairy Woodland
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