Happy Solstice

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The return of light, may yours sparkle and delight!

My sincerest wish that you shine your inner light on your dreams and your unique beauty.  Let the rest stay in the darkness…  Bring forth your beauty!

Here’s a free range faerie location update.  Missy and I have been in a little cottage in Michigan where we are staying for three months!  It is the longest we have stayed anywhere since last February.  We love it.

We go for long nearly daily walks in nearby Grand Mere State Park.  Exploring trails trekking up and down the sandy dunes on Lake Michigan’s waterfront.  Several varieties of Oaks and plenty of of deer and some foxes.  We’ve watched it changed from peak fall to deep winter. Beauty and quiet.  I feel full with it.

I’ve also been quite busy with seasonal markets in nearby Chicago, so haven’t been on here blogging quite as much.  It’s been great introducing folks to verdant faerie fragrances and reading the amazing Mermaid Oracle deck for them.

Here are some recent pics of our life…

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Shine on you crazy darlings!

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My Anam Cara Missy

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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…

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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.”

O’Donohue continues,

“..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…

Cute Dogs Smellin’ Icky Things and Jasmine

Kauai Flower Meditation

And here’s a blatant invitation to experience my perfume!  (Hey a faerie’s gotta breath too!)

Anam Cara, Eau De Parfum

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Anam Cara from the Phantasmagoria Series

“If you perceive the entire universe as phantasmagoria an ineffable joy will arise in you”   ~Vajnanabhairava Tantra…first century A.D.

 

And Happy Friday!

 

Fae on Friday – Yellow Bliss

Singing Soul in Yellow and Green

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Yellow singing faerie joy
Light inside and bright employ
The summer’s song all in your heart
Makes loss or sadness fast depart.
~ Doreen Stelton

There is such a feeling by late August.  Creamy and bright.  The excitement of the spring blooms have mellowed and the verdancy of summer is familiarly sweet.  Cicadas, crickets, and birds serenade.  Even when feeling the slightest bit low, just lie on the beautiful earth and listen and breathe.  Soak it up, radiate it out.  Summertime, and the living is easy.

photo by Bill Haggelund
photo by Bill Haggelund

It gets me every time regardless

Find that little yellow faerie inside of you and let it sing.

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(Ahem, this canary looks a little pissed off, but birds just look that way a lot, I think)

Velvet and Sweet Pea’s Purrfumery has the perfect summer perfume for you – Songbird.  This beautiful natural perfume was composed to the sound of birds singing outside the perfumer Laurie Stern’s window.  It’s a complex blending of multiple lush, exotic florals and sweet spices with a soft vanilla finish.

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Do you like Missy’s summer look?  She did not…  She tried to make a game out of eating them short after.

Cute Dogs Smellin’ Icky Things And Jasmine

This is my dog Missy.  Cute.

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This is her nose.  It gets stuck in a lot of unsavory places.

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Missy loves to smell and smell and smell.  Snorting around and pawing at the dirt to get more of the stink up.  The stinkier the better.  Feces, dead things, pee.  Ya’ gotta keep an eye on her and gage her movements when she’s sniffin’.  What will she do?  Will she just sniff it?  Pee on it?  Eat it?  Roll in it?  All of the above? Maybe a combo. What is she seeking with all this sniffing?

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Dogs have nearly 44 times more scent cells than humans.   Missy often carefully smells where she peed previously.  I think perhaps she is looking for information regarding her health.  Dogs can be trained to sniff out evidence of prostate cancer in human urine.  So maybe this.

Also definitely sniffing out some chow.  That’s usually the first thing.

Dogs can also smell fear apparently.  I guess they are scoping this out.

And probably a good time.  Dogs like to have a good time.

My last dog, Dodger, did not like most dogs.  She had ‘little dog complex’ and started a lot of fights.  But she did, however, fall tail over paws in love with Shadoobee, a big handsome gentlemen pooch.  Her ONLY love, and when she was a middle aged dog at that.  The first time she saw him she was already in love with him.  Jumping around and yipping in a most embarrassing fashion, like a teen girl at Beetles concert.  I think she had fallen in love with him via his pee scent BEFORE even meeting him.  Shadoobee’s human mom said he had this affect on all the ladies.

Back to Missy, sometimes it’s annoying to stop every couple of feet so she can sniff some peemail.  But, mostly I like to indulge her in her occupation.  The perfumer in me gets it.  Sniffing is satisfying.  However, her preference in scent I don’t really get.

Smellin’ butts for one thing.  Just not into it.

Although… wait…  maybe… In the world of  perfumery one the definable notes in scent is fecal.  That’s right.  Perfumers have a vast vocabulary of identifying aromas and one of them is fecal.  The scent of certain flowers has this fecal quality.  Yes, it is true.  Jasmine, for example.  And I LOVE jasmine.  Jasmine’s scent is a heady, narcotic, seductive, mix of floral and, yes, doo-doo.  The resulting combination is raw, beautiful, and dirty-sexy!

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jasmine 

The esteemed natural perfumer and olfaction and flavor writer Mandy Aftel of Afetelier talks up jasmine far more poetically than me:

“Rich and warm, heavy and fruity, intensely floral, jasmine is almost narcotic in its ability to seize the senses and imagination.  Yet powerful as it is, jasmine refreshes rather than oppresses, possessing antidepressant as well as aphrodisiacal properties.

It is the intensely narcotic aura that strikes you most, though, inducing a sense of receptivity and surrender, almost of being ravished.  The feeling of intoxication derives from the fecal undertone that is the source of the yin-yang appeal of some of the most coveted perfumes.  The magic ingredient is indole, a major element in jasmine, as well as tuberose and orange flower, that is also found in human feces.  This odor of indole, reminiscent of decay, lends jasmine the putrid-sweet, sultry-intoxicating nuance that makes jasmine essences the same delicate aphrodisiac today as they were in the past.”

Ah, thanks for putting it just so, Mandy.  (By the way, this essay, Perfumed Obsession, was first published in the literary magazine, Tin House and can also be found in the fascinating book of essays about smell entitled The Smell Culture Reader edited by Jim Drobnick.)

So, if I love jasmine, maybe I do share Missy’s obsession?  Hmmmm.  I think not enough to do the circle dance.  In theory then.

And I just tried to get Missy to smell my bottle of precious natural jasmine concrete, and she turned her head with an injured look as if to say “Are you trying to poison me?”  This, from a dog who once found a pair of soiled underwear in the park, smelled them, and then immediately picked them up in her mouth, and ran willy-nilly with wild, gleeful abandon.  Icky, right?

Smell is a very personal thing.

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Got any good dog sniffing stories?