The family bathroom

It wasn’t a fancy place. 

It was functional and clean with a little bit of frill with my mother’s white ruffled Priscilla curtains. The front window, which you could see when you sat on the potty, looked out towards the front road and the barn. It was small, but you could still squeeze 3 people and a dog and several cats in there.
Which we did. 
You see, our family bathroom was sort of a communal place sometimes. Oh, it was a private place for thoughts or body functions, but in times of need, sickness or family practicality, it took on a feeling of community.

Dad never grew a beard or a mustache in all his life. I sometimes wonder what he would’ve looked like with one, but I can’t imagine it. Evidently, he couldn’t imagine it either, as he shaved every day, and sometimes again in the evening if he and mom were going out. 

I “shaved’ with my dad. 

Even though, I was a 5 year old female with no whiskers of any sort, I was allowed to “shave” with my dad. He’d get out his cup and shaving brush and whip up a frothy “Old Spice-y” lather and apply it to his face. 

Then dad would get out his razor to shave. He’d give me an empty one without the razor blade in it and I’d get to soap up and shave my girlish face too. Then came the patting dry towel, and the brisk splash and ritual after shave slapping to wake you up. 
Shiny and fresh were we.

I saw my mother naked here for the first of many times. She is gone now, as is my dad, but their memories are still with me. The bath was a place I could have my mom's undivided attention as she sat in the tub and bathed and I would sit on the rug or the lid of the potty and chat. We would chat about this and the conversations that happened there were as real and true as the reality of the total person that was there behind the shower curtain. Mom had 6 kids, and her belly was stretched from it. Her belly pouch sagged into a comfortable shape of a W. At first disconcerting, then sort of sweet and loveable I found myself conforming to this womanly shape as I aged. Yes, I am turning into my own mother. (even as I nurture my inner child, my body is mimicking my mother outside).
My own grown daughter now jokes about inheriting this body shape and we consider it just part of our own heritage. 
We feel the "W' is for Wonder Woman.
If you were sick, you could always call for someone to come to the bathroom to help you, get more TP or fetch you something to help you in your current hour of need. 

There were also times of work in the bathroom, cleaning it or cleaning the dog or cats that needed baths.  Giving the cats baths was always a time of swift and deliberate labor, with bandaids given as treats for afters.

The most fun, how’ere, was bubble baths with my little sister and I. We would beg mom for a “Mr. Bubble” bubble bath and about once a week we could have the treat. We would play with the bubbles on our faces, making bubbly beards like Santa or the Devil or moustaches like Snideley Whiplash from Dudley Doo-Right. We’d search for toys and submarines and have oceanic epic battles with our boats. 

Then, tragically,  when the water was too cold to stay in anymore, we’d pull the plug and stay in the tub, not wanting to leave, but have it drain down all around us.

This is when the last and bestest fun was to be had. We lay side by side on our backs in the tub, with the warm porcelain next to our wet, clean skin, and by just lifting a stuck arm or small of the back, we could make horrendous fart sounds.
They would carry for miles and miles, as well as the sound of our infectious, bliss-filled squeaky clean, potty humor laughter.

This is the real reason why we didn’t have TV.  

Mag 101

From Boris Hoppek's Tokyo exhibit "Ever"

A Blanket of You

In a harsh, cold sterile world
Nothing makes me feel more safe
than being wrapped up in your love

Click here for more of This week's Magpie tales
This is a writers project ...they give you a pic once a week....and you write the words.

Magick of Mortality

I think, in retrospect....
THE most magickal aspect of this trip is the fact that total annihilation was avoided.


Our car problem could very well have been a different ending.
Even though we'd had the car checked out and work done on it before we left for FL (front end alignment and inspection recently, and radiator and water pump changed before we left....)
The CV joint was bad on the front end of the car. The universal was about to break. Boot cracked  sometime on the way down to fl...the fluid drained out. We went all over hell and high water....

I mean we went from Central NY....drove thru the Troll Country of the Mountains of Va....all the way to Fort Myers....then down and across Alligator Alley back and forth....back up to Tampa area ....back and forth the Skyway Bridge....back to Fort Myers....


When I finally talked Harry into 'getting an appointment to have it looked at", my water bottle in the car's cup holder was shaking like it was put in a paint spinner. The car was shaking our livers out.
We put it into the shop JUST IN TIME.

We were SO LUCKY it was MAGICK!

1) We were able to stay at our dear friends' house, safe, and happy....with a little extra time with them for a visit while the car was worked on before the trip home...(which we couldn't made any other way).

2) We didn't lose control of our car while we were on any of those highways and crash and burn and have to get scraped off the road.....

3) We had a reputable dealer that was recommended...(i.e. NOT BillyBob's Garage in South Bumfuck late at night on roads we didn't know...)

4) We got out of it with a brand new CV joint, 2 brand new tires (of the RIGHT size w/all tires now matching!) all for less than $500. (We'd like to thank Larry's Auto & Truck Service in Cape Coral, FL for being so kewl with us. We even brought the 2 wrong sized /but good shape tires, back with us. Any one need a pair of 215s? All season tread. $25 bucks for the pair....alright so we're trying to recover some bucks on this one....)

5) We even got better gas mileage on the way home!!
Gas mileage on way down was 20mpg....and got 25 mpg on the way back.

It was a MUCH better car after that mechanical operation. The "tapping" sound we heard earlier, that we thought was a "lifter"...was gone. There are some noises we've yet to investigate, but we are HOME, happy and SAFE.

I read another book outloud to Harry on the way home. It is something kindred to share a story, while passing the time... and it sure goes by faster.
Two- twelve hour driving days can be hard back to back.

For my Big Bang Theory friends....I read the book "Supernature" by Lyall Watson.
Sort of a "Sheldon" book of science investigating super nature-al subjects. Very interesting. A South African, botonist, zoologist, biologist, entymologist...combining String theory and Clairvoyance and Dowsing and Telepathy all rolled into one strange 1970s book.

Some of it was mind boggling.
Some of it was bizarre.
Some of it was archaic by our standards now.
All very curious.

We saw things on this trip that you usually don't see....

Oh, and we bought some Page Oranges.
This is Sunshine on your plate.
The SWEETEST hardest to peel oranges you ever had.
I think I've eaten 10 in a food frenzy.
A drippy, sweet, savory, citrusy delightful, food frenzy mow down.

We saw lots of the world.....

Glad to be home. Monty has been soaking us up and was so glad to see us.

Nick took VERY good care of him. They were buds.

Our "adopted" son, Nick, did fabulous here with Monty. Sort of like a young novice hermit holed up with the squirrels and Monty. Very hermetic. Protective. Zen like, Spartan existance. Very respectful. He didn't even eat the leftovers I left for him. And he even changed the sheets and did his dishes. And I still have food.

Here's my boon acquisition :)

Like I said. It's all very lucky.... and a perfect end to the Magickal Mischief Tour.

Dragons & Fairies & Orbs, oh my!

The faire was AWESOME.
 The weather was great, about 80 degrees, sunny and a bit of a breeze. Being from the frozen north, it IS good to escape the weary, dreary weather and have a break with real SUNSHINE.
It is a tonic. So is being in garb, meeting friends, playing music!

We are blessed to have friends and fans down here so far away from home!

There were some fun things hither today!

Anoles at St. George's Dragon Orphange! (these little critters changed color when put on my 12 string :) At first they were dark brown, and when they rested on my guitar and I played it a bit, they turned bright green with the vibrations! Kewl huh?
And this is what a Renaissance Faire "Rolls Royce" looks like. Now, THAT'S a hood ornament!
Check this out my StoryBook Friends!
An antique Vampire Killer Kit! Complete with Cross, wooden stakes, strychnine, Holy water, garlic oil, hammer, dagger....a bargain at the Manna booth for $175!
Tonight was the last night of the faire. We played at the pub for our final set and it ROCKED. Faire patrons were all waiting for us and buying us pints at the last set!  I couldn't drink them fast enough!! I gave away about 3 pints that were backing up....Here's Hoppe and some of the great waitstaff there at the pub.
 This fellow, Aradon, even danced his boots off! (NOTE boot :
Should you take advice from a devil with a fiddle? :) Will played with us a lot and it was wicked fun!
Faire friends~

 Oh, did I tell you that Miss Wisconsin came to our sets today? AGAIN? She asked us when we were going "back to Wisconsin to Bristol Faire again". (We've never even ever been there ONCE :)

Thought you'd like that.

Here's PROOF :)
 Check out the ORBS here after the last of the music was done on the last night of faire!
The Orbs even followed us to the car for the way home! BTW...Abby told me when she saw this pic, that the tail lights on the car nor the inside car lights were on when this pic was taken. Sure looks like it though, aye?
My heart is warm.
We are home at Dre & Max's. Harry has taken our Suburu into a shop Max recommended. It is shimmying and shaking our liver out. Terry, the director of the faire, (who owns a garage) thinks it sounds like a tie rod. I'm amazed we have gotten around the whole state as much as we have! We've been to the bottom of the state and back up to Universal Studios and back again. I do NOT wish to get stranded in south bumfuck with a tie rod or broken transmission (resulting problem) off some exit in God knows Bubba's garage...saying "You sure are (hack) you got some engine problems huh??" And then ...hearing BANJOES.
So we've traveled hither and yon all over the long state of Florida...
over the Alligator Alley back and forth,
over the Skyway Bridge 3x...
and I guess the Magick of this part of the trip is that, unbeknownst to us, the tires on the left side of the car were 205s and the ones on the right side of the car were 215s. How weird. We've had it in to several shops since we bought it and nobody caught it....

Then over time, the car, wiggling over the miles being "sided" wrong, made the "boot of the cv joint" break on the way down...all the grease came out of the joint over our journey. We are lucky, lucky, lucky.

Am now in process of getting it all fixed and eating Max & Dre's leftovers and will head out on the morrow for points North...

Gods willing and the creek don't rise.

As I said, it's been a really lucky and Magickal journey!!

A magickal trip to Hogwarts and The Lost Continent....

Our magic started early today....
Ravyn, Harry and I set off on an adventure!
and it was spent going to Mecca. Yah.
Harry Potter's Hogwarts Theme Park at Universal Studios.
Like I said.
And in the words of the Genie Johmbie, "Mecca lecca high, mecca hinney ho!" This turned into our chant as we set off to Orlando to arrive at opening at 9am. Of COURSE the first character we saw welcoming us into the gates was a GENIE. (no shite).
As I said, "Mecca Lecca Hi, Mecca Hinney Ho!" :)
The whole place was awesome! There was Dr. Seuss Land and a bunch of kooky trees....

As Horton says...
"We are Here! We are Here! We are Here!"
and lots of fun stuff for us to play with :)

and we sorta kept on our path, because we wanted...nay, NEEDED to get to Hogwarts.
And then?
THERE it was!
We went straight to Olivander's Wand Shop

and then to Hogwarts for the ride.

I was concerned, because I'm not a big ride person (long story) so I was pretty hesitant with all the disclaimers along the way to the ride.

We wandered through the castle on the way....

(BTW~ an aside...I never saw this Unicorn tapestry. It is the magick of this place. I see I was right BY it...never saw it till now when I'm adding pics!! )

 But, after getting buckled in and a few moments of disorientation, it was great! I was almost fried by a dragon! I narrowly escaped having my life force sucked away by a Death Eater!

 I also know now how awesome it would be to fly in a Quidditch match! You have to be fast when being chased by dragons in flight! There were enchanted pictures on the wall,
and Dumbledor himself welcomed us to the school!
Looks like I was even under the "Sorting Hat" at one point!!
Slytherin wants me bad. :)
I told Harry that I will make him a robe, because he does look very similiar to him and he would look SO GOOD! So we got Harry a Dumbledor's hat...
and well...

Scabbers the ratty HAD to come home with me.
(and YES....he is missing a toe :)
We had just finished our fabulous ride, when Merlyn said, "I need a pint after being so brave on that ride!" and we ducked into Hogsmeade Tavern
for a drink and some fish & chips.
Even Scabbers got a nosh and a drink :)
Harry saw a Hogwarts "student" sitting next to us, and asked to have his pic taken with her (it's only fair after all the pics we get asked of us at ren faires :) and she obliged. She also ended up asking us if we wanted to pal around with her, and go on a rollercoaster ride with her. Her name was "Aria" because...she liked to sing :)
She showed us the ins and outs of the park, turned us on to Butter Beer (YUM!)  AND (BONUS!) gave us her employee discount on a few purchases (which included Dumbledor's wand for Harry!)
We traveled to Jurassic Park....I had made mention that IF we were to see Jeff Goldblum that "he was MINE". But we didn't....damn. I would've run after him like a velociraptor :)
Speaking of velociraptors, I saw the birth of a baby raptor! And well, then we had to run for our lives like crazy when a pack of Velociraptors saw us...we managed to get away with our lives.
Thank god there were others behind us that couldn't run as fast :)

Then we went to The Lost Continent
and sat in on the "Eighth Voyage of Sindbad" stunt show and then we almost were trapped forever in Poseidon's Temple by a demon. Thankfully it all turned into a pretty great pyrotechnics and water works show as "Poseidon's Fury".  (whew :)

The last bit for us this day was our visit to Super Hero Island. Ravyn went on "The Incredible Hulk Coaster" and we all went on the "Amazing Adventures of Spider Man" ride. This ride was fun and crazy and wild and a 3-D adventure where I was nearly killed by several Marvel comics nemesis! All while dropping thousands of feet (in my head) or topping skyscrapers!

Then it was HAPPY HOUR and time for Marguaritas in Marguaritaville!
Scabbers was even hoping for a sip...
We thought about it....but Harry said NO SALTY RATTIES :)
All in all a VERY magickal day! I am SO tired! It's hard walking the pavement, being chased by toothy dinosaurs, being on the Quidditch team, and fighting crime and scaling buildings with Spiderman.

And all in a single day.
Now I'm off to bed....
with a fellow who looks remarkably like Dumbledor...
and I hope Scabbers doesn't snore :)