“The sense of smell includes the sensuality of fragrance, but the dynamic of breathing also takes in the deep world of prayer and meditation, where through the rhythm of the breath you come down into your own primordial level of soul. ” ~John O’Donohue
Today I was watching Missy sniff the air again. I get jealous of her. Her ability to sniff so intensely…
I took to the dunes to sniff and write. Which I did do. With some vials of perfume materials, I did Plein Air blending (on my wrist) then wrote a little story about these scents. (I’m working on a piece about perfume as theatre).
But a lot of the time I just admired Missy enjoying the dunes…
Randomly, I am reminded about John O’Donohue’s book, Anam Cara, and I pulled it out to share a quote with you, dear Reader. A quote about Fragrance and Breath.
John O’Donohue was a Irish poet, author and priest and I strongly recommend his writings if you are not familiar. His book Anam Cara explores friendships, love, states of being, and what it is to be human.
Synchronistically he mentions the very thing I was marveling over.
From Anam Cara…
“The sense of smell or fragrance is deft and immediate… Animals, of course, work wonderfully with the sense of smell. To take dogs for a walk is to realize how differently they experience a landscape. They are glued to trails of scent and enjoy a complete adventure, tracing invisible smell pathways everywhere. Each day we breathe 23,040 times; we have 5 million olfactory cells. A sheepdog has 220 million such cells. The sense of smell is so powerful in the animal world because it assists survival by alerting the animal to danger. The sense of smell is vital to the sense of life.”
“..breath is sister of spirit.”
And then linking fragrance and breath to spirit.
“The sense of smell includes the sensuality of fragrance, but the dynamic of breathing also takes in the deep world of prayer and meditation, where through the rhythm of the breath you come down into your own primordial level of soul. Through breath meditation, you begin to experience a place within you that is absolutely intimate with the divine ground.”
Isn’t that brilliant?
I have no real point to make here. Just wanted to share.
Here’s a couple more blogs about Missy, fragrance, meditation, and self love, in case you missed them…
When you look into the woods at night or dusk. And you can feel the mystery. The wonder of it. Alchemistic renderings of earth and spirit, your transcendence is a gossamer thread away…
From the edge of the dance floor at the Masquerade Ball, Missy’s ears prick up, “It’s Missy! I know that dog! She’s a dog worth petting again!” Missy’s first visit to the New York Faerie Festival, or any festival, and she’s made friends with faeries, trolls, goblins & wizards within the realm of the fae.
And what a festival! Abundant enchantment; music & dancing all day…
Magical creatures of all varieties… (Missy’s new friends)
A tree house, a free house.
A secret you and me house,
A high up in the leafy branches
Cozy as can be house.
A street house, a neat house
Be sure and wipe your feet house
Is not my kind of house at all-
Let's go live in a tree house.
Missy is particularly enchanted with the joust and horses, ‘scuse me, unicorns.
When not getting petted, Missy let me visit some of the many lovely vendors. Just a sampling…
Do you know this feeling?
When you look into the woods at night or dusk. And you can feel the mystery. The wonder of it.
What. Is. Going. On. In. There?
Magnetized towards the pulsation of the ancient virtues. Heart quickening. You know something is going on in there! Alchemistic renderings of earth and spirit, your transcendence is a gossamer thread away…
It’s on the other side of the Troll’s Bridge (no duh), the Faerie Habitat. An enchanted sphere of the Festival grounds. Dryads, Mermaids, Faeries… Charm spinning and spirit gifting…
Linger in the Habitat to connect and transcend.
But first you must get past the trolls. And, be warned. There is a troll toll. They demand, in the friendliest of ways, “shinys” (really anything that is shiny), or a joke, or you may choose to get mud tattooed.
Missy is not so sure of the trolls. Mayhap because they refer to her as a goat.
But the charm of the Trolls wins Missy over.
In the end Missy passes in to the Faerie Habitat. Her mysterious encounters there will remain mysteriously hers.
But wait, Goblins!
Gandersnitch the Goblin is a revelation. Despite the assurance that he is a reformed Goblin, poetic and wise, I’m wary. But he turns out to be a kindly inspiration.
Gandersnitch is indeed poetic and wise. I’m reading and loving his perfectly inappropriately refreshing and highly entertaining book now.
He also has a lovely card game and takes confessions.
As for me, the festival was my sublime medicine. I am sincerely grateful. Thank you.
Surrounded by the singing of the spirit of the wild self, I am mended. Thank you. I soak up kindness, wildness, and joy from the festival creatures. Thank you. The dear souls near my tent who chat with me and help me set up and dance with me at the ball. Thank you. The sparkling eyes and filthy-glittered dancing bodies. Prose and laughter spilling from mouths like honeyed nectar. And the collective feeling that life is indeed something to be lived and played with. The outward reflection that we are all of us beautiful and magical. Thank you.
It brings me back to myself. Ah yes, hello to my beautiful, magical me. So nice to glow you again.
The New York Faerie Festival is a three-day affair just completing it’s 7th year. It is out in the boonies of New York, tucked in a valley near a river. Parts of the Festival grounds are in shady woods, and parts bright sun.
Primitive (Port-O-Let) but happy camping is available on the premises. Two yummy dinners are included, with options for meat eaters and vegetarians. There is a simple breakfast hosted at the local firehouse for a small fee/donation. There are some other campgrounds and motels nearby.
There is so much going on at this festival! I barely touched on it here. Fantastic music and performances on multiple stages, outstanding vendors, jousting, tons of street characters who interact with the festival goers, some food trucks, and little spaces throughout the grounds to hang out and play or dream. The Masquerade Ball on Saturday night is not to be missed!
Wear a costume.
Bring cash, always appreciated and it was hard to get a signal to use the Square reader.
Also, read the email communications you receive from the Festival carefully, for if you camp there are specific arrival times.
Hope to see you there in 2017!
If you want more festival blogs, I have several. Here they be:
Can you feel it? The pulsation of energy and expansion. Summer is a time of unfurling and ripening, an outward – yang season. A genial time for delighting in the company of others and for self-expression.
To connect with this genial and expansive energy, find some time to honor your connection with the sun and the start of summer. Be quietly with yourself and wildly with others. Or wildly with yourself and quietly with others!
Summer Solstice has become quite the holiday, as in days of yore, so most of us are aware it is the official kick-off of summer. It’s also a day when the veil between the faerie and mortal world is thin and contact can be made. Hence for me, reading the faerie cards is a must…
I also like to leave gifts for the fae; nuts, cheese, honey, whiskey… They flutter about and absorb the essences.
Meditation and Faerie journeys are wonderful to get into the faerie summer spirit.
Here’s a faerie journey/meditation…
To start, you may like to use scent and aromas. Jasmine is a beautiful transportive scent. I’ll be using my DuskBlossom Perfume.
And I’ve been playing with essential oil of Mugwort lately. Honestly, it does not smell so yummy, but is reportedly great for accessing the faerie and astral worlds. You may use these by applying to wrists and hands or temples. If you are pregnant you should avoid Mugwort.
(MUGWORT SHOULD NOT BE USED BY PREGNANT WOMEN!)
Next, take a moment to center yourself and breathe deeply. Close your eyes. Feel yourself connected to the earth and simply feel your body from within. Try not to judge, just let yourself be and observe.
In your mind’s eye, picture yourself in a sunny meadow filled with flowers. The sun is high in the sky. As you are enjoying the warmth of the sun you see at the edge of the meadow a white deer, stag, or unicorn.
Slowly approach it and see if it is friendly towards you. Perhaps it will let you gently stroke it’s neck. Perhaps it will let you climb up on it’s back.
If it does not seem like a good choice to climb up. Just enjoy your visit, thank the creature, and go back to your meadow and sit and feel the effects of the visit.
If you are able to do be on the back of the creature. Let it take you for a ride. Observe what you see and feel.
When the ride is complete, go back to your flowery meadow.
Contemplate what was revealed to you.
Here’s where we use the sun. Allow the bright brilliant light of the sun to illuminate anything you felt, saw, or thought. You do not even need to understand intellectually. Just let it be filled with sunlight.
Enjoy this sensation.
When you feel complete, stretch and yawn, allow yourself to awaken,refreshed and energized by the sun.
Finally, pet your dog, even though she has barked throughout your meditation and stepped all over your faerie card spread.
…Enchanting the monster with Sandalwood and tiny dancing plastic glow-in-the-dark faeries…
The Magical Telepathic Blogs
If you’ve used your telepathic abilities you would “know” all of the blogs I’ve been writing in my head (and not here.) You’d know all of the beautiful and inspiring things I’ve seen and thought as I travel around, wanting to share… The doubts and revelations…
You’d know of my beautiful Michigan blogs, about where I re-learned to love the quiet of winter snow. My companions were pines, dunes, Lake Michigan, my perfumery studies and of course, Missy.
(no wifi, which was kinda nice.)
Of surf and sunshine with my dear mom and some little plastic faeries. Where I realized relaxing is different than just being calm.
No Missy. 😦
(no wifi at the beach, real nice)
I’m sure you loved my pictorial blog about the oodles and oodles of jaw-dropping art and architecture in Mexico City. A whirlwind tour with my parents and their company, Mexi-Mayan travel. Mexico City and its surrounding area is chock full of treasures!
(Too busy for wifi – surprisingly nice!)
And didn’t you just devour the Chicago blogs? Highlighting more art and architecture.
But most importantly the blog written from my south-side Beverly, artist garret celebrating the completion of my course of study at the Natural Perfumery Institute. Hooray!
Finishing two perfumes… Dusk Blossom and Invisioning Roses
(And becoming most shamefully addicted to Game of Thrones… no blogging, urp.)
AND then the blog announcing the crowd sourcing campaign to raise money for the verdant faerie scent salon start-up!
The world really is full of wonder and kindness and support. It took me a good 6 months to a year to have the guts to come out and ask for this help.
You know that demon that shouts repeatedly, “NO, YOU ARE NOT DESERVING!!!” The beastly voice that keeps you from creating and sharing your gifts… That ogre, claws embedded in my shoulder, mouth hot in my inner ear. But I kept dreaming and invisioning. Walking in woods for inspiration. Yoga for peace and aerial silks for strength. Visiting faerie realms while drowning the horrid voice in Bulgarian rose absolute. Enchanting the monster with Sandalwood and tiny dancing plastic glow-in-the-dark faeries. Washing clean in Lavender and Neroli.
And finally when I was ready, support was there! And I am grateful and humbled and joyful… (And still accepting donations.)
Here I am surrounded by Lulu’s faeries, loved ones, cherry blossoms, Missy and the verdant faerie perfumery.
Look at these new packaging supplies!
Elegant 5 ml bottles for precious perfumes, and dried rose petals, just because….The rest of my supplies will arrive soon, and I will have a thrill of a lifetime blending my perfume formulas.
The official launch date is April 24th at a live event at Invision, in Chicago and with an Etsy store.
It will be a simple start regarding labels and that sort of thing. But I feel confident in the magical perfume blends and in the quality of the ingredients I will use.
More soon about the opening! (NOT telepathic.)
Well, I still hope to write those blogs, and lots more, in case we are not telepathically linked. And still on the move. But I am totally open to a rendezvous in the faerie realm as an alternate to blogs or telepathic communication. Just lemme know.
Beauty in the process of deconstruction. Serenity in spiritual longing.
Wabi-sabi Faerie wants you to celebrate the aesthetic of beauty in life’s imperfections. Revere the patina of wear and tear. Contemplate as exquisite the irregularities of construction and deconstruction. Through this reverence Wabi-sabi Faerie urges you to open to serenity found in spiritual longing, your incomplete, imperfect self. The rhythms of life.
Wabi-sabi is a world view or aesthetic from Japan. The process of finding beauty in what is imperfect or incomplete, rather than the disappointing search for perfection By recognizing this beauty around you, you recognize it in self. Wiki has this to offer – read here.
I found this little faerie in the park, half buried in the dirt. Filthy and worn, displaced from its human child companion. Non-precious, plastic material at start, now faded.
Observing this object with reverence, I recognize its patina of faded glitter and the transformed shape of worn edges. Beauty in the process of deconstruction. And more, I feel the beauty of the love, hope, and tender dreams of its previous care taker. I experience raw and bittersweet elegance.
Wabi-sabi In Scent
My natural perfuming and aromatherapist friend Miriam, of Kindred Earth Botanicals recently wondered, “What do we do with all of these mods?” A “mod, ” short for modification, is an experimental perfume creation. One that the nose doesn’t intend to sell, it’s not perfect enough, yet of beauty just the same.
Perfume teacher and perfumer, Anya, of Anya’s Garden, Natural Perfumery Institute, advises a Milleflore. Taking all those mods and tossing them together in a single multifunctional blend. Use the juice for home scenting, hair scenting, the car… Here is great beauty in imperfection.
I’ve written about the perfume Songbird before, created by perfume artist Laurie Stern. Songbird is a sort of mash-up of all the scents that were on a “no” list for a perfume creation project. She smelled the rejects together and loved how they smelled. This scents became the perfume Songbird and one of her favorite perfume creations.
And of course, perfumes, like wine, can age beautifully. Beauty in decay. Like the scent of autumn leaves on the earth…
Splash from the past, anyone? Enjoying the Wabi-sabi feel (though not the scent) of this dusty old cologne encountered in a deep clean…
We Are Wabi-sabi
A process of beautiful construction, deconstruction, reconstruction and then more deconstruction again. Dreams, hopes, and loves. My physical body expressing these beautiful imperfections: for example my beloved messed up toe joint, my graying hair, the lines on my face. Like you, I am nothing but perfect imperfection. Looking around, the world glistens with beautiful imperfection. You get it.
If a faerie made perfumes
How would she blend?
Would she tincture the green of a violet stem
In dew from the tip of a fern of the deep,
Deep, dark woods
So cool and fecund?
Yes, she should.
At midnight she'd enchant a single blossom of jasmine.
Coax out it's ethers with her giggling spells,
A puff and a whir,
Yes, might as well.
She'd surely use cepes and oakmoss galore
All seamlessly earthy and rich.
Seductively luring their sacred aromas
Into small crystal vials of heterochromatic hues
With a wild-crafted dance of blush-worthy charm.
Yes, wouldn't you?
If a faerie made perfume
She'd capture the soul
(Without ravage or ill)
Of each plant, flower, and loam.
Her mind-bending nose
Bringing heart to the nectar
And bliss - solace sublime.
~ Doreen Stelton (the verdant faerie)