Graciella la Gitana Oracle © Weekly Reading

Graciella and I pulled this week’s card as usual. We’d tried last week, but I couldn’t seem to get the post picture inserted. I have to admit I was frustrated and irritated. My spouse and I were planning to go out and I had forty-five minutes to get the post in. Well, forty-five minutes later I was still tooling around with the picture that refused to show vertically. It insisted on a horizontal layout. At some point, I let it go. I needed to move on and that was the card I’d chosen- the traveler. I also felt that I wasn’t ready to start the oracle readings up yet. I needed to do the easier thing. So after three-quarters of an hour of going uphill I gave up. I am in a phase of letting things be so that’s what I finally did. I can be stubborn. It’s a Varela trait.

Today, Graciella and I shuffled the oracle deck. We fanned them out on the dining room table. This time I didn’t smudge. I think it will be okay. Together we pulled the Change/Cambios card.

Change/Cambios

The card image shows an arm reaching up for a particular cannister. In the process of doing so, it seems that another cannister has inadvertently fallen open. In the sweet sugar or flour that is spilled, there is another image. One of a chain of golden links that is in the shape of a heart. Sugar and flour are usually used to create a baked good or a confection. We may have to work a little bit for the tasty muffin or pie but it is usually well worth it when we bite down into it. While there could be minor annoyances, such as having to clean up a spill, the idea that something unexpected and pleasant may show up spontaneously in a favorable way, is the idea that Graciella would like to share.

A friend had sent me a beautifully touching letter today. She’d read yesterday’s post on the loss of my father and how I am adjusting. At the end she wished me all the courage I could muster as I move forward on this voyage. It was heartfelt and I’m in gratitude at the love sent in that letter. Today’s card speaks to the wonder and fulfillment about to be experienced in changes that will be encountered. I think that they’ve already begun. One example is me picking up a needlepoint piece that I’d put down a couple of years ago. I didn’t have the concentration or the patience to work on that piece. This weekend the ease of the needle work was calming and yes, comforting.

Needlepoint in progress

If you experience an unexpected satisfying change this week, will you share it here with us?

With love and a hug,

Graciella and Theresa

Treading water

I took swimming lessons at the YWCA the summer that I completed the fourth grade, the summer that my sister died. Treading, from afar on the tiled deck, seemed almost relaxing. The counselor had on her swim cap, with the elastic strap and fastener held under her chin. She invited us in almost lazily with a large smile on her face. I couldn’t tell from my angle that her legs were moving furiously under the water. I was tested a couple of weeks later. I timed in for a full thirty seconds. Treading water was something that has always remained a challenge for me. I can float and swim both on my belly and on my back at a decent rate. Treading water seemed synonymous with how I walked on the earth back them. Everything seemed hard.

I haven’t written since January 20. Shortly after that date we’d received the call from the hospice nurse that my Dad was declining. By the 25th, she suggested that we call family for last good-byes. He was moving quickly into his transition. We sat with him for the next three days. We prayed. All of us. Family members wove in and out of the room. He knew us. He gave a little wave of his hand whenever we were in his vision. He crossed over on the twenty-eighth of January. I feel as though I’ve been treading water since then.

There’s usually a check list in my head at all times. It’s part of my monkey-brain. I jump from one thing to the next, making sure that everything is okay. The check list has changed from making sure my dad’s needs were met, to funeral arrangements, and business calls, to now. My check list has turned to re-checking. Was I there enough for him? Did I do the best for him? Was he comfortable? Mostly, was I fully present as his daughter? My head tells me yes. My heart has tricked me a couple of times into feeling I could have done more. My head reminds me that I did the best I could for the man, who at all the stops of life, did the best he could for me. We were a great team.

Last night I woke up thinking that a big part of my life is gone. Duh! Of course, it is. Yesterday, I had a short meditation and there he was walking toward me readying for a game of dominoes. This is a process, not an event. At some point, I’d placed a picture of The Never-Ending Story on my Facebook page. The quote is “Nothing is lost… everything is transformed.” I will see how that will manifest in my life. I feel him. I see him. Our love continues. He is with Mom, my sister, and his parents and siblings again. I’ve been blessed to have him all of these years.

I’ve the deep desire to go to the beach. I know that I can feel him there too. We spent many afternoons there during the last couple of years. It’s too cold to jump in the water. I won’t tread furiously. I think this time I will let the ocean’s energy wash over me in the cold breeze. I will allow the healing to be a gentle process. I will just be.

Graciella la Gitana Oracle © Weekly Reading

What could I possibly write about the full Super Blood Wolf Moon? I can say that it coincides with the only full lunar eclipse of 2019. I’ve read Chani Nicholas’s and Heather’s at Rising Moon Healing Center takes on it. They are experts at reading the moon and I expect you to run over to their websites and learn all of the intricacies of what this auspicious moon brings to your life in star and sun signs and all the rest. To me, the full wolf moon is the time to remember the homeless and the hungry. The ones who pull blankets over themselves as they lay against the cold concrete sidewalks and the ones who do the same in forests, less visible, but are there never the less.

theapopkavoice.com

In the image, I see the wolf howling for those who are still in need. I hear the plaintive cry to be heard. The wolf who is true to his purpose, sticks steadfastly to his message, to his relationships, to his mission. I too call out into the night and hope that I can stick to my purpose too. The challenge of praying to the moon is to be aware of prayers answered and to proceed with intent and love. The notion that I or my life will be transformed with the full moon is just that- a notion. I must heed my task throughout the year along with the waxing and waning of the energies of the moon. It’s the time between the astrologer’s blog post that counts the most. I must stay true- like the wolf.

Tonight, I shuffled Graciella’s oracle deck. I breathed, centered, and with Graciella’s energy melded with mine, we chose a card from the deck. We pulled the South-Sur Card.

Graciella la Gitana South-Sur Card


Walk in trust and innocence. Know that you are taken care of. Look to the sun and let it caress your face. There are things that may be unclear, may be harsh, or that you are unable to understand. Drop your shoulders and breathe. As the energy of the moon, as the energy of the sun, and the stars enfold you, know that there is something much bigger than you in process. Being vulnerable, allowing that we don’t know everything, or have all the answers all of the time is often felt as burdensome. Look to see where the magic is. Grant that Something, wonderful and good, the power to calm and to soothe you. Love is the answer.

Con todo amor,

Graciella y Theresa

Graciella la Gitana Oracle © Weekly Reading

I’m back at my latest novel Coney Island Siren. The final corrections are nerve-wracking. I have excellent notes and comments from my editor, but am still anxious that I’ll miss something. I will. That’s what makes me human. Hopefully, any errors will be kept to a minimum. It felt good to be back in the text and the poetry. I still love the book after years of writing it and months of editing. I’m planning to have advance reader copies ready within the next couple of months. Let me know if you’re interested. I’ll see what I can do. There’ll only be a few but maybe you’ll be on the receiving end of an ARC. The book release will be in June of 2019. Soon there!

I have a candle burning in the background and could hear Graciella trying to get my attention. It’s Sunday evening and time for a weekly reading. She’s on time. So I am. Finally. I smudged myself and the oracle deck with white sage and feathers. Together, Graciella and I centered, took a few deep breaths, and shuffled the deck three times. We spread the cards out face down in a fan-like formation and asked for this week’s message. We pulled one. The Toreador-Matador Card! ¡Olé!

Toreador/Matador

This is the card that came up multiple times at the Artisans Annual Holiday Market at El Barrio’s Art Space that I attended recently with other artists and authors. This card just kept popping up!

As the toreador who circles, who embodies the concept of stealth, we are ready to strike repeatedly at all costs of life to satisfy the audience. We strive to complete the transaction that we believe we are bound to and cannot consider extricating ourselves from. The truth is that we can remove ourselves from anything we are in conflict with at any time. We are not robotic in our maneuvers. The toreador seems to be in union with the bull. Watching its every move. Planning the execution. But the toreador also has his or her eye on the blood-thirsty crowd who has gathered to see what for some is a barbaric fight. The same grace that is needed for this bloody dance is also one that may be used to save the one who may actually need the saving. Is it the intended target, such as the bull? The audience who has paid a fee for the spectacle? Or is it the toreador who might benefit by walking away? During the week, look to see where this might fit in your drama. It may be a quick strategy. It may not even be your own, but one that you are allowed to be privy to. Share your experience in the comments when you experience it. Graciella and I are certain that you will have the opportunity.

Felicidades!

Graciella y Theresa

Graciella la Gitana Oracle © Weekly Reading

After a day of watching television and relaxing with a run thrown in, I’m feeling a bit back to myself. I’m finally back to writing. Two and a half pages for my second Daisy novel to be exact. I don’t keep a word count. That’s a bit excessive for me. Daisy spoke to me and I was able to give her attention. She’s patient. And so are you. I’ve had a few people ask me at some recent events, when my next Daisy novel will be ready. Soon, guys. We’re working at it. She’s persistent and that’s one of her strengths. Today I received a call from the hospice chaplain for my Dad. We talked about my Dad’s needs and mine. It’s been a revelation to be on this journey and realize I truly have lots of help from many sources. To have the ability to tell the chaplain that I’m in a good spiritual place is a gift.

As I prepared to pull this week’s card from Graciella’s oracle deck, I thought about the positivity of the holiday week. I wondered what type of celebratory card that we’d pull. I smudged myself and the cards with a good dose of white sage. I felt Graciella’s energy merge with mine as I shuffled the deck and fanned the cards out on my desk. I felt excited about what I sure would be a pleasure filled concept. Together, we pulled the Treachery/Traición card. What! Treachery card! How dare Graciella! But so it is. I actually took a moment away from the card to deal with my disappointment in the card. But I’m over it now and ready to tackle Graciella’s message.

Graciella la Gitana Oracle; Treachery/Traición

The text that is provided in the booklet says, Blinded by your own reflection, Self-will binds, Allow awareness to surge through your being, Refrain from self-betrayal. The Spanish translation is: Quedarse ciego con su propio reflejo, La obstinación ata, Permite que la concencia aumente a través de tu ser,  abstenerse de la auto-traición.

What I take these words to mean, in this particular reading, is to not limit ourselves to our desires, wants, and perceived needs. There is a much bigger picture to consider. The image shows the gentleman tied up and hanging from a branch. Fairly innocuous as he’s held up by his coattails. His feet are reflected in the water. Where has he been? Where is he going? Where does he believe himself to be on his path? His hat floats below him. A hat such as this type is often symbolic of pride for many. Has he lost his head? We see Graciella sitting in a meditative pose at the side of the pond. The pond is clear and will show many things as long as Graciella or we are willing to look at what is below the surface. In her hand she holds a clear quartz crystal. What better tool is there to bring us clarity? To bring us to the light within.

The message of meditating to bring clarity to ourselves is apparent. But we can also, during this time of holiday celebration, are encouraged to not be shallow as the pond. We can allow our masculine and feminine sides to merge and be whole in spirit and mind. We are encouraged to reflect upon our reflections! Are we open to the simplicity in giving and receiving, such as a crystal point that channels energy both from ourselves to others and from others to ourselves? Be open. Be reflective. Let the joy of giving and receiving come to you without pre-conceived notions. The celebration may just be in that!

Happy holidays my loved ones! May you bask in joy and love!

Graciella and Theresa

Soulstice

I’m sitting with my Dad here at his Assisted Living facility that for him is also newly hospice. He just smiled at me as he listens to the fancy headphones that my spouse bought just for this purpose. Los Panchos. His favorite. He has enjoyed having two daughters again after losing my sister many years ago. Sometimes my Dad forgets my name but doesn’t forget Patricia’s name when she walks in the room. I finally have time to shed a few tears in the quiet of this room.

During his last hospitalization we decided there had been enough hauling him back and forth for treatments he wouldn’t have consented to if he didn’t have Alzheimer’s. The staff treats him exceptionally well here and I see their hearts through their actions and kindnesses. He can live out the remainder of his days here without being poked, prodded, and with the serenity that this time on earth should be for him.

This time of the solstice and the waxing full cold mean brings a time for reflection and stillness. It doesn’t matter what zodiac sign we happen to shine under. At my aunt’s recent funeral I read the words ‘a time to reap and a time to sow.’ This is the time to be quiet for us. A time to listen for what is important and to allow what is not to fall to the wayside. A time to remember all the good things that life has brought us. A time to let time standstill.

My Dad has been awfully good to me. Always. I’ve sat in his car reading comic books while he tooled around with the engine. I’ve listened to him sing and play guitar with his brothers and in the quiet of our living room. I’ve watched him get up at 4:30am for his daily labors for years without a complaint. My only complaint was that he was strict during my teenage years. I can smile about that now. He helped my children with anything they needed as he did me. He opened his arms to my spouse and played guitar with her.

My Dad is still here with me and I’m grateful. Last night I dreamt a dream that reminded me of my mother and her singing during my childhood. I recently had a meditation of my parents dressed to the nines. Toasting. She’ll be there for him when he crosses over. I feel relief and gratitude about that.

But for now I will allow my soul to be comforted in the time of the cold moon. We are not wanting. We are taken care of. I hope you feel that too.

xo

Theresa

Our Lady of Guadalupe

Our Lady of Guadalupe

I couldn’t let today go by without writing a few lines about Our Lady of Guadalupe. It’s Her feast day. Many are celebrating Her love, compassion, and kindness.  It’s said that when She appeared to Juan Diego on the Hill of Tepeyac, She said, “Am I not here, I, who am your Mother?”

I attended Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral on Her feast day many years ago. My memory is one of being struck by the love of the people who surrounded Her iconic image. The procession of the devotees stirred my heart. This Mother holds a gentle presence in our house and a small depiction of Her image watches over our dining room table. The face of this Goddess tells me that no matter one may go through, that may seem unbearable, may be made tolerable with Her love and support. Being led to acceptance of life’s harsh realities has often changed me and spurred me on to much needed spiritual growth. 

When my spouse and I traveled to Mexico City in 2001 and we saw Her shrine at the Basilica de Guadalupe, I truly felt Her energy suffuse me with love. When I read the words that were a message of hope to me, I knew that I would never be alone. I hope that you too can be filled with Our Lady’s message of love.

Graciella la Gitana Oracle © Weekly Reading

Yesterday I updated my blog site and I’m totally unfamiliar with this new style of blogging that is all behind the scenes to the finished product. That just about wraps up the way everything is going in my life. The exterior seems fairly smooth but the interior me is adjusting to all things new and different. Last Sunday evening, Graciella and I drew the Change/ Cambios oracle card and it was on point as always. 

Today was filled with holiday shopping,  visiting my Dad at the assisted living facility, and grocery shopping. It all went off without a hitch other than the  increased traffic that’s to be expected at this time of year. It all seemed mundane except for the car that was pulled over on the expressway filled with bullet holes. It made me think of how fortunate I am and that my loved one or myself wasn’t in that car or that I don’t have a child in a cage awaiting deportation and that I walked throughout the day with my spouse bickering at times like spoiled teenagers. I’m truly blessed. I wrote a few pages in my second Daisy novel WIP and got a nudge from Graciella. It was time to pull this week’s card

 We smudged ourselves and the Oracle. We shuffled the cards, fanned them out on my writing desk, and pulled the one that called out. Together we pulled the East/Este card. 

                 East/Este Graciella la Gitana Oracle

I immediately think of Morning Tobacco prayers that call to the four directions. The East is the place of the new day, new beginnings, the light that is within us and in our surroundings. It is the place of Eagle spirit that according to Sams in her Animal Medicine cards tells us to stay in the light of Spirit and not to get mired in the mud as can easily happen when we don’t stay in the light.

We learn to shine our shine as very young children. At some point it becomes a choice whether we want to be in the light and not get stuck in the negativity that is so prevalent as we age and are offered choices to gossip, to be mean, not to give an answer, or maybe laugh if someone fumbles or trips. This card reminds us about the peace and tranquility that comes to us in the simplicity of illumination. Today I see the image of the card as one of growth and of being tethered to beauty if we allow it. The barren trees may be from our backgrounds, maybe we had a childhood wasn’t that great or happy, but today we still have the opportunity to meet and greet the light of the sun that is rising. That whatever the background or our baggage we can still make the choice to be in the light. That whatever is going on around us in this chaotic and dark world filled with charlatans and persons who may not want to be in the light, we can not only be in the light but be the light. 

Make your choice, pray to golden eagle, that you too, may fly high with Spirit!

Our love and light,

Graciella y Theresa

Graciella la Gitana Oracle © Weekly Reading

I made it a point this week to keep last Sunday’s read up front in terms of my experience. The concept of the Sun/Sol showed up clearly for me. The meaning wasn’t news that I might be unhappy to receive. But it did arrive with a starkness, a clarity of vision, of knowledge that I would be ill-advised to deny. Did I have to do anything about the information? No. But it was still helpful to know and it started a series of talks for me to begin managing an important part of my life.

Today, I smudged myself and the oracle with white sage. It smells so wonderful. I shuffled the cards three times, and fanned them out on an uncluttered surface, my creative table. I felt Graciella’s energy merge with mine as I centered and together we pulled the Change/Cambios card from the oracle deck.

Change! Yet again, we receive the message that change is afoot. What else is new? The image shows the hand reaching for two cannisters when there is one on the counter that is spilling sugar. Surprisingly, a piece of jewelry is also seen in the sugar. The wall tiles are vividly colored and today I see them as Christmas decorations already hanging. Can you see that too?

As we become busy with the holiday season, it would be prudent to take the time to tend to what needs to be done before we attempt to do more. Are we buying things we already have? Are we neglecting basic things  because we are harried and in a rush. What might we be purposefully neglecting because we believe that cleaning up our messes will take up too much time.

Take a moment. Look around. Where in our lives are things neglected or ignored because we believe that other things take precedent? The festivities are already here. We don’t have to look too far for them. We can create fun and happiness while still taking the time to take care of the things that ultimately bring a sweetness to our lives unrealized in our daily activities.

With much love,

Graciella and Theresa

 

The In-between Times

The notion of in-between times was so romantic to me when I first heard of them. I’d learned of the power of Spirit coming through at dawn and dusk. Those were the times to meditate and to slide through those slivers of space where I could experience more than my seeming regular world could afford me. I learned to scry water, to read cards, to listen with all of my senses and slowly built a foundation to always be in touch with Spirit.

This mid-morning, I find myself sitting at my computer. I am writing a few more pages in my slowly emerging second Daisy mystery novel. There’s a strong feeling of peace within my heart. I’ve placed all other things aside for this time. I’ve come to realize this is an in-between time too.  We received the shipment of our boxes of personal belongings that we sent up from Puerto Rico as we prepared to place our house on the market. We opened them last night and pulled out pots, pans, and art work from Puerto Rican artisans that we cherished and enjoyed several times a year on our trips to the island. I placed a few pieces of art up on my wall and can now enjoy them every day of the year.

This in-between time is bittersweet. I loved my little house in Puerto Rico. This is a time of letting go but also a time of accepting new things into my life. As I wait for a call from the realtor, I pray that the family who is meant to have the house ambles through the serene neighborhood. That they may speak with one of the vecinos who were so helpful to me over the years. The ones who shared food with my Dad. The ones who helped fix the television for him when he started losing the ability to do the things that we take for granted. The ones who called me to tell me it was time to check on him and that the time he needed me more than he wanted had finally come.

This chasm of time is one for Spirit to come through. The feeling of serenity is strong in my office/spiritual space. It is strong within me. It reminds me of walking through the Camuy caves in Puerto Rico. The bats hung above us occasionally tittering. The rocks whispered secrets from our ancient ones. The waters trickled- gently guiding us- ensuring we wouldn’t skate on the slippery paths we tread. I am grateful for this time. I can accept the changes that life brings and anticipate the beautiful new days ahead. I can sit in this moment of time and listen as Spirit tells me that all is okay for today.

I hope that you feel that too. ♥

Theresa