food-additive

Witch on a budget.

With all my expenses; rent, electricity, kitten food (latest addition); I need to start thinking of ways to fulfill my witchy needs without breaking the bank.

I honestly sound like a salesperson, but here is a list of the niftiest tips I have found on tumblr and the web :

  1. Baby Powder - Beauty, innocence, youth and fertility.
  2. Monopoly Money - Wealth and prosperity.
  3. Googly Eyes - Divination and finding lost things.
  4. Needle and thread - Binding, poppet magic and sewing sigils into clothing items.
  5. Baking Soda - cleansing, protection and can basically the same properties and uses salt has. (Not representing Earth and salt is still the most powerful, but this works in an unlikely emergency.)
  6. Tea bags - Can basically be used for anything since you get all those fancy tea’s that you can use for their correspondences.
  7. Soap - cleansing (obviously), curse removal, healing and different scents to match the correspondences.
  8. Butter - all kitchen witchcraft, nurturing, protective and to attract wealth.
  9. Chocolate - love, happiness, friendship, romance and intimacy. Milk chocolate being more innocent and dark chocolate being more sexual. Consumed to increase power.
  10. Banana - safe travels when travelling long distance and improving sexual stamina.
  11. Pasta - protection, financial creativity and improving communications.
  12. Cotton - harvest, good luck, cleansing, beauty, protection and rain.
  13. Duct tape - binding and banishing.
  14. Crayons - colour magic, sigils and creativity.
  15. Bath salts - cleansing, pain/stress relief, peace, love, purification and different scents for their correspondences.
  16. Makeup/Toiletries - protection, glamour magic, confidence and beauty.
  17. Eggs/egg shells - fertility, represents the Goddess, warding, protection and kitchen witchcraft staple.
  18. Envelopes - communication, assists when doing magic for someone else and protection when travelling long distance.
  19. Tin foil - protection, binding and reflection.
  20. Pennies - luck, wealth and prosperity.
  21. Toothpaste - cleansing, replacement for mint and preventing gossip.
  22. Glue - binding, cursing, sealing and prevention of loss.
  23. Chili powder - lust, revenge magic, hexes, bad luck and curses.
  24. Toothpicks - poppet magic, cursing, pain and revenge.
  25. Bells - warding, protection and cleansing.

All of these can be used in so many ways, in potions or directly with intent. Just be super creative and find what works for you.

Originally posted by triviaonscreen

Headcanon: Kara shops at stores like costco because she can buy bigger packages of food and it doesn’t cost a fortune. It started out as just her and Alex and they would pool their groceries into one kart and Alex would pay Kara for her portion. When J’onn found out that they did this he offered them a DEO issued credit card and SUV so they could make monthly trips and really stock up. After Winn started seeing the charges to the DEO credit card he tried giving a list to Alex who just raised a brow, prompting Kara to take the list. He knew his groceries wouldn’t even create a dent in the amount Kara spent, he doesn’t remember the last time he bought his own coffee creamer. 

Then Maggie and Alex started dating and her and Alex started taking their own kart. Which prompted a few shenanigans, including Maggie standing in the middle of the aisle with her hands above her head while Kara and Alex lined up their karts. At the drop of her hands Kara and Alex would push off coasting down the aisle seeing who could make it to the end first. The first time they did it Alex yelled that Kara cheated and used her superpowers to win. The next time they raced Alex broke her finger when their carts rammed into each other and told J’onn that she had broken it when she tripped in her apartment. He didn’t need to read her mind to know she was lying. 

When Lena and Kara started dating, Lena insisted that she go with them. She had never been inside a costco and wanted the full experience. Plus she wanted to help pay for the groceries now that she was feeding Kara at her place too. Maggie and Alex followed the other two around shaking their heads and sharing knowing smiles as they heard Lena trying to convince Kara that she there was no point in buying bulk if she didn’t buy the rights foods, that she needed to buy food with more substance than chips and ice cream. Kara smiled gratefully as Alex and Maggie snuck things in their kart for Kara every time  Lena had her back turned. When they got home Lena pretended not to notice the sudden addition of foods she didn’t remember them picking out letting them all think that they were being sneaky.

brought to you by @littlestdanvers and myself

Conversations I have with my cats.
  • Why do you want into the shower? It’s dry, there’s not even any water there.
  • It’s not my fault your sunbeam has gone. No I cannot bring it back.
  • No you are not allowed to play with the raven outside. You will loose.
  • If you want to play fetch, you need to actually bring the toy back, not abandon it half way.
  • You are so full of food you can no longer jump onto the bench where your food is kept. You do not, in fact, require additional food.
  • It’s just a toilet, not a portal to Narnia.
  • Did you just forget how to cat?

im in a Write mood but the only thing on my mind is Darkest Dungeon so here’s some Tips because it took my ass 800 years to stop wasting so much gold and time.

Note that this “analysis” doesn’t account for wandering enemies, which is why it’s labeled ‘skimp out on’ instead of ‘bring none of.’

THE RUINS

  • Bring a stack of: Holy water and skeleton keys. The confession booth, decorative urn, altar of light, and holy fountain curios are all activated by holy water. Skeleton keys open up the display cabinets and the locked sarcophagi, in addition to the usual treasure chests. You may also need more food than usual, as no curios in the ruins grant food.
  • Bring a few: Medicinal herbs and shovels. The herbs can cleanse iron maidens and alchemy tables for extra loot, and the shovels can be used to break open locked sarcophagi and display cabinets for a handful of coin if you don’t have any keys.
  • Skimp out on: Antivenom and bandages. No curios in the ruins need them, and no enemies in the ruins inflict bleed or blight. Bring just a handful of bandages, if that.

THE WARRENS

  • Bring a stack of: Medicinal Herbs. The dinner cart, dining table, and moonshine barrel are extremely common and are generous with food and loot when purified with herbs, or granting an until-camp damage buff in the case of the barrel. The herbs are also useful for purging the occasional debuffs.
  • Bring a few: Bandages and holy waters. The blade rack curio is solved with bandages, and many enemies in the warrens pack stacking bleed attacks that bandages will easily solve. Holy water dissolves the piles of bones for additional loot, and can be popped to make adventurers more resistant to the numerous bleeds, debuffs, and diseases the swine will throw out.
  • Skimp out on: Torches, antivenom, and food, of all things. The warrens tend to have very short hallways, so you don’t need to bring many torches; they’re best used on the rare piles of glowing scrolls, which purge a negative quirk when burned. One or two antivenom will be useful for the occasional crits from corpse eaters, but not much else until you reach Champion level, where Swine Skivers and their poison-tipped spears start popping up. Also, due to the prevalence of food-granting curios (which herbs cleanse), you don’t need to pack as much food as usual.

THE WEALD

  • Bring a stack of: Shovels, bandages, and antivenom. Blockages are obnoxiously frequent in the Weald and will burn through shovels quickly, so 4~6 for Medium or larger dungeons is recommended. Shallow graves also use shovels to yield their bounty. Bandages and antivenoms are both useful to cure the frequent bleeds and blights that the weald inhabitants inflict, but are also used on the mummified remains and eerie spiderwebs (bandages), and the old tree and left luggage (antivenom).
  • Bring a few: Holy water, and medicinal herbs. Holy water is always useful to pop when in a battle, but can also be used on the rare troubling effigy and pristine fountain curios. Medicinal herbs remove the debilitating debuffs from the crones, giants, and viragos, and can be used on beast carcasses for additional food.
  • Skimp out on: Skeleton keys. Maybe 1 or 2 per dungeon. The left luggage can be solved with either antivenom or a key, but you don’t want to be caught without a key if you find a treasure room, right? Food harvested from beast carcasses can supplement a smaller food supply than usual.

THE COVE

  • Bring a stack of: Shovels, and medicinal herbs. Not only are shovels useful for blockages, but the barnacle-crusted chest and giant oysters both interact with the shovels for additional loot. Medicinal herbs purify fish carcasses for both loot and additional food, but are especially important for the eerie coral curio, which purges a negative quirk if an herb is used on it. Herbs are also very important to clear off the debuffs from the cove’s traps, the sea maggots, and the jellyfish.
  • Bring a few: Food, holy water, and bandages if veteran or higher. Fish carcasses show up often, but not often enough to be relied on, and also seem to trigger food-based quirks more often than not. Holy water is always useful to prevent bleeds and debuffs, but can also be used on the fish idols to grant a powerful until-camp buff. Bandages do not interact with any curios, but the uca (giant crab) enemies that show up at veteran and champion levels inflict nightmarish amounts of bleed damage.
  • Skimp out on: Antivenom. Nothing in the cove inflicts blight, and the brackish tidepool curio is very rare, but worth maybe bringing one in. If the dungeon is apprentice-leveled, you also will not need any bandages.

WRITER LIFE

  • Tips on Getting Started
  • Why the Right Word Choices Result in Better Writing
  • 7 Tips to Become a Better Writer from Stephen King
  • Why Writers Must Read
  • 4 Ways To Have Confidence in Your Writing
  • Improve Your Paras
  • How to Use Reading to Become a Better Writer
  • How’s My Driving?
  • Writing Lessons
  • Improve Your Writing Habits Now
  • 10 Writing Tips
  • Advice for Young Writers
  • Speed Up Your Writing
  • 5 Ways to Add Sparkle to Your Writing
  • How to be Confident in Your Writing
  • Breaking Writing Habits
  • Writing Better Than You Normally Do
  • How to Finish What You Start: A Five-Step Plan for Writers

Inspiration and Writer’s Block

  • 31 Ways to Find Inspiration for Your Writing
  • Tips for Dealing with Writer’s Block
  • Free Association, Active Imagination, Twilight Imaging
  • Writing Inspiration, or Sex on a Bicycle
  • Finding Inspiration
  • Busting Your Writing Rut
  • Solve Your Problems Simply by Saying Them Out Loud
  • On Habits

MUSIC

  • Coffitivity
  • August Ambience
  • Rainy Mood
  • Forest Mood
  • Simplynoise
  • Soundrown
  • Iserenity
  • Nature Sound Player
  • Mynoise
  • Music For Writers

SOFTWARE AND TOOLS

Research Organization

  • A.Nnotate
  • Bubbl.Us 
  • Evernote
  • Freemind
  • The Literary Machine
  • Xmind
  • Mindmeister
  • Zoho Creator
  • Storyboard Template
  • Scrivener
  • Zotero
  • New Novelist
  • Realtimeboard

Family Trees

  • Family Echo
  • Genealogy
  • Legacy Family Tree Maker
  • Family Tree Builder
  • Xy Family Tree

Editing

  • Paper Rater
  • Autocrit
  • Pro Writing Aid
  • Cliche Finder
  • Editminion
  • Grammarly 

Writing 

  • Open Office
  • Calligra
  • Script Frenzy
  • Abiword
  • My Writing Nook
  • Zohodocs
  • Atlantis Nova
  • Jdarkroom
  • Lit Lift
  • Zenwriter
  • Ywriter5
  • Jarte
  • Storybook
  • Hiveword
  • Bighugelabs
  • Q10
  • Writer’s Cafe
  • Treepad Lite
  • Now Novel
  • Google Docs

Timeline Makers

  • Time Toast
  • Interactive Timeline
  • Preceden
  • Tiki Toki
  • Time Glider
  • Timeline Maker
  • My Timeline
  • Timeline Js
  • Timeline Generator 
  • X Timeline
  • Our Story
  • Dipity
  • Meograph

FORUMS, BOARDS, COMMUNITIES 

  • Fictionpress (Fanfiction.Net’s Original Fic Counterpart)
  • Figment 
  • Wattpad
  • Archive Of Our Own (Mainly Fanfic)
  • Bbc English Literature Message Board
  • Scribophile
  • Writer’s Cafe
  • Writing Community: Writer’s Workshop
  • Book Country
  • Greatwriting
  • Flickspin
  • Writing.Com

WRITING BLOGS

  • The Creative Penn
  • Jeff Goins
  • Write To Done
  • Writer Unboxed
  • The Writers Alley
  • Writer’s Digest

RESEARCH 

Culture

  • Culinary Post 1: Foraging And Food Sourcing.
  • Indian Names And Their Meanings
  • Update: Culutral Appropriation Do’s And Don’ts
  • Geography Post 1: Rational Impacts.
  • Geography Post 2: Cartography (Part 1)
  • Muslim Names And Meanings
  • Geography Post 2: Cartography (Part 2)
  • Primary Sources On Ancient Civilizations
  • Other Cultures
  • Clothing, Fashion And Art Post 1: Styles And Materials.
  • Clothing, Fashion And Art Post 2: Textile Technology.
  • Culinary Post 2: Food Cultures
  • Additional Information Post 3: Divination And Fortune-Telling.

Terminology

  • Fashion Terminology
  • Victorian Dialogue
  • 20’s Slang
  • Glossary of partner dance terms
  • English Slang
  • Ballet Terms

Mental Illness

  • Mental Illness
  • Depression
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Anxiety
  • Kleptomania
  • Psychiatric Hospital
  • Schizophrenia
  • Borderline Personality Disorder
  • Anxiety Disorder

Crime

  • Mob Mentality
  • How Street Gangs Work
  • Street Gang Dynamics
  • Black Market Information

Survival

  • Limits Of The Human Body
  • Basic Wilderness Survival Guide
  • How To Build A Shelter
  • 5 Basic Survival Skills
  • Basic Survival Medicine: Wounds
  • How To Pick A Lock
  • Life After a Heart Attack
  • How To Make A Fire
  • Information On Burns
  • How To Find Water In The Wild

Self-Defence And Fighting

  • Fighting And Self Defence
  • Fighting Scenes
  • Problems With Fighting Scenes
  • Every Type Of Fight Scene
  • Fantasy Battle Scenes

Death

  • Stages Of Decomposition
  • Realistic Death Scenes
  • Death Scenes
  • How Bodies Decompose
  • How to escape after being buried alive in a coffin.
  • What Happens When A Person Dies
  • What Happens When You Kill A Man With An Erection

Body Language

  • Body Language Cheat Sheet
  • Importance Of Body Language
  • Non Verbal Communication
  • Body Language Of Flirting
  • Tips For Writers: Body Language
  • Flirting 101
  • Body Language: Mirroring

GENERATORS 

Names

  • Us Census Name Generator
  • Fake Name Generator
  • Random Name Generator
  • Quick Name Generator
  • Fantasy Name Generator
  • Random Rpg Name Generator
  • Fictional Characters Name Generator
  • Character Name Generator For Creative Writers

Plots

  • Quick Story Idea Generator
  • Short Story Starter
  • Plot Scenario Generator
  • Script Frenzy’s Plot Machine
  • Quick Story Generator
  • Dramatic Scenes
  • Plot Bank
  • Science Fiction Plot Generator
  • Random Plot Generator
  • Step-By-Step Story Plot Generator
  • Story Spinner
  • Story Kitchen

Prompts

  • Creativity Portal Prompts
  • Prompt Generator Lists
  • Creative Writing Prompts
  • Story Starting Sentences
  • Masterpost Of Writing Execrises
  • Writers Block?

NOVELS

  • Getting A Story Idea
  • Start Your Novel Already!
  • Planning The Book
  • Plotting The Book
  • Outlining Your Novel
  • Why First Chapters Matter
  • Your Novel Blueprint
  • Outline Your Novel In 30 Minutes
  • How To Write A Novel
  • How To Increase Your Daily Word Count From 2k To 10k
  • Writing First Paragraph
  • Writing Chapter One
  • Writing Chapter Two
  • When To End Chapters
  • Chapter Length
  • Book Length
  • Formatting a Manuscript
  • Series Vs. Standalones
  • Writing a Blurb

 ROMANCE

Sex

  • Things Smut Writers Should Know
  • Write a Blowjob/Prepping for Smut
  • How to Write a Sex Scene
  • A Smut Guide
  • Domination and Submission
  • Smut - The Bare Bones
  • 3 Secrets to Writing Sex
  • Smut Guide: For Beginners
  • Writing Love Scenes
  • Casual Sex
  • 20 Tips to Writing Love Scenes
  • Making Love
  • A Guide to Language in Smut
  • Lesbian Smut
  • How to: Write a First Time Sex Scene Romantically
  • On Love And Sex
  • Tips on Writing Sex Scenes
  •  Smut (For Virgins)
  • All That Sex!

Kissing

  • Kissing
  • Writing Out the First Kiss
  • How to Write a Kissing Scene: Valentine Edition
  • How to: Write a Kiss (2)
  • Different Types of Kisses
  • How to Write a Kiss?

WORLD BUILDING

  • Eplans 
  • Planet Maker 
  • Timeanddate 
  • Roomsketcher 
  • Average Weather Settings
  • Apocalypses
  • World Building 101
  • Bringing Settings To Life
  • Creating A Believable World
  • Mapping A Fictional World
  • Mapping Your World
  • Religion In Setting
  • Fractal World Generator 
  • Creating A City From Scratch

PLOT

  • 25 Ways To Plot, Plan, And Prep Your Story
  • Creating A Compelling Plot
  • Plot and Conflict
  • How To: Write A Quality Plot
  • What is Conflict?
  • Plot vs. Exposition
  • Components Of Your Plot Page
  • The Elements of Plot Developmen
  • The Snowflake Method
  • Your Plot, Step by Step
  • Basics Of Writing A Plot
  • How To: Create A Plot Outline In 8 Steps
  • Writing a Plot Your Own Way
  • Writing Up A Plot
  • Guide To Plotting
  • The Top Ten Plotting Problems
  • How To: Write A Plot In 12 Steps
  • Eight Unique Plot Ideas
  • Adding Conflict to Your Scenes
  • Beginning And End, But No Middle!

CHARACTERS

How To

  • Backstories
  • Writing An Attractive Character
  • Effective Supporting Characters
  • Minor Characters
  • Creating Believable Characters
  • A Flirtatious Character
  • How to write Disabled Characters
  • Writing A Character Who Has Lost Someone Important
  • Writing A Bitchy Character
  • Character Under The Influence Of Marijuana
  • Writing Rich Characters
  • Make Your Characters Better
  • Pansexual Character
  • Writing Rebellious Characters
  • Writing A Character Based On Yourself
  • Eccentric Intelectual Character
  • Writing Vampires
  • An Indifferent Character
  • Writing A Character Who Self-Harms
  • Character With Night Terrors
  • Writing Child Characters
  • British Character
  • Make Your Character Special
  • Ballerina
  • Writing Convincing Male Characters
  • Writing A Drunk Character
  • Friends With Benefits Relationship
  • Writing Popular Characters
  • Writing A Character With Memory Loss
  • Writing A Female Bartender
  • Writing Villains
  • Writing Manipulative Characters
  • Writing A Feminist
  • Writing A Sociopath

Archetypes 

  • Villain Archetypes
  • The 12 Common Archetypes by Carl Golden 
  • Jung’s 16 Personality Types

Depth

  • Character Quirks
  • Celebrity Secrets
  • Addictions and Bad Habits
  • 16 Character Traits
  • 300 Possible Secrets to Give Your Characters

Questionnaires

  • Character Development Questions For Writers 
  • Character Questions 
  • Character Questionnaire 1 And 2  
  • Child Character Questionnaire 
  • Mbti Personality Test
  • Character Description
  • 100 Character Development Questions
  • Character Development Questionnaire
  • 30 Day Character Development Meme
  • Character Development Check List
  • Adult Character Questionnaire 
  • The Mother Of All Character Questionnaires
  • Character Questionnaire 
  • Character Outlines

Names

  • Popular Baby Names In 1930
  • Popular Baby Names In 1945
  • Top 100 Names In England And Wales In 1924
  • Top 100 Names In England And Wales In 1934
  • Top 100 Names In England And Wales In 1944
  • 1000 Most Popular Victorian Names
  • Victorian Era Names, A Writer’s Guide
  • Victorian Darlings - British Baby Names
  • 7 Rules For Picking Names
  • Character Names
  • Popular Baby Names In 1924
  • English Surnames
  • Dutch Surnames
  • Spanish Surnames
  • Scottish Surnames
  • German Surnames
  • Italian Surnames
  • Irish Surnames
  • French Surnames
  • Scandinavian Surnames
  • Welsh Surnames
  • Jewish Surnames
  • Surnames By Ethnicity
  • Most Common Surnames In The USA
  • Most Common Surnames In Great Britain
  • Most Common Surnames In Asia

EDITING AND REVISION

Reference Materials

  • Dictionary.Com
  • Thesaurus.Com
  • Oxford Dictionary
  • Spanish Dictionary
  • Medical Dictionary
  • Your Dictionary
  • Botanical Dictionary Of Plants And Flowers
  • Cambridge Dictionaries Online
  • Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary
  • Rhymezone — Rhyming Dictionary
  • Onelook’s Reverse Dictionary
  • Online Etymology Dictionary
  • Lexscripta - Dictionary Of Slang

How To

  • General Revision Tips
  • Cliché Finder
  • Reading What You’ve Wrote So Far
  • Synonyms For Common Words
  • Urban Legends On Grammar
  • Common Grammar Mistakes
  • Proofreading
  • Three Self Editing Tips
  • Revising A Novel 

Synonyms

  • 25 Synonyms for ‘Expression’
  • How to: Avoid Misusing Variations of Words
  • Words to Keep Inside Your Pocket
  • Words Instead of Walk (2)
  • Other Ways to Say..
  • 300+ Sophiscated and Underused Words
  • List of Misused Words
  • Words for Sex
  • 100 Beautiful and Ugly Words
  • Transitional Words
  • Words to Use More Often
  • Alternatives for ‘Smile’ or ‘Laugh’
  • Words to Use Instead of ‘Walk’, ‘Said’, ‘Happy’ and ‘Sad’
  • Synonyms for Common Words
  • Alternatives for ‘Smile’
  • The Many Faces and Meanings of ‘Said’
  • Synonyms for ‘Wrote’
  • A Case Of She Said, She Said

Editing Services

  • Academic Edit
  • Firstwriter.Com
  • Editavenue
  • Editorial Freelancers Association
  • Editing And Writing Service
  • Editor World
  • The Penn Group

Grammar

  • Grammar Girl
  • Common Errors In English Usage
  • Common Writing Mistakes
  • Grammar Handbook
  • A Guide on Punctuation
  • The 13 Trickiest Grammar Hang-Ups
  • English Practice
  • Guide To Grammar And Style
  • Commonly Confused Adjectives
  • The Tongue Untied
  • Guide To Grammar And Writing
  • Hypergrammar
  • How To Use English Punctuation Correctly

PUBLISHING

Self-Publishing

  • Making Your Own Poetry Chapbooks
  • Content Models for Spreading Poetry on the Internet
  • The Future of Ink: Digital Publishing
  • Putting Your Poetry In Order: The Mixtape Strategy
  • Top 10 Digital Publishing Posts for 2013
  • DIY Poetry Publishing Cooperative
  • Internet Poetry & Self Publishing
  • Making Chapbooks

Agents

  • 1000 Literary Agents
  • Agent Query
  • Preditors & Editors
  • Subscribe to Publisher’s Marketplace 
  • AAR (Association of Author Representatives)
  • US Literary Agents
  • Poetry & Writers Guide to Finding an Agent

Software

  • Scribus
  • PagePlus
  • Libre
  • Spring Publisher

Querying

  • Query Shark
  • Writer’s Digest Series on Writing Queries
  • Media Bistro 

Literary Magazines

  • How to Submit to Literary Magazines
  • AIM (America’s Intercultural Magazine)
  • Calliope
  • Cicada
  • Cricket 
  • Listen Magazine
  • Seventeen
  • Suddenly Lost in Words
  • Sucker 
  • YARN

Publishing

  • 25 STEPS TO BEING A TRADITIONALLY PUBLISHED AUTHOR: LAZY BASTARD EDITION

ACADEMIC

General

  • The Five-Paragraph Essay
  • Using Punctuation Marks
  • Deadly Sins Checklist
  • Formatting Your Paper
  • Writing About Literature
  • Basic Essay
  • Revision Checklist
  • Planning And Organization
  • Editing And Proofreading
  • Latin Terms
  • Essay Structure
  • Tips On Introducing Quotes
  • Academic Writing Tips

Introductions

  • Introductory Paragraphs
  • Introductions
  • Writing An Introduction
  • Preparing To Write An Introduction
  • Introduction Strategies
  • The Introductory Paragraph
  • Writing Effective Introductions
  • In The Beginning
  • Introductions And Conclusions
  • The Introductory Paragraph
  • Writing Introductory Paragraphs
  • How To Write An Intro

Body Paragraphs

  • Paragraph Development And Topic Sentences
  • Transitions
  • Transitions
  • Transitions
  • Four Components Of An Effective Body Paragraph
  • Writing Paragraphs
  • Paragraph Development
  • Body Paragraphs
  • Body Paragraphs
  • Strong Body Paragraphs
  • Body Paragraphs
  • Writing Body Paragraphs
  • How To Write Body Paragraphs
  • Writing The Body
  • Writing Body Paragraphs
  • Body Paragraphs
  • Body Paragraphs That Defend A Thesis
  • How To Write Body Paragraphs
  • The Perfect Paragraph

Topic Sentences

  • Topic Sentences
  • Writing Topic Sentences
  • Topic Sentences
  • Topic Sentences
  • The Topic Sentence
  • Paragraphs And Topic Sentences
  • The Topic Sentence
  • Topics, Main Ideas, And Topic Sentences
  • Writing A Good Topic Sentence
  • Good Topic Sentences

Conclusions

  • Writing Effective Conclusions
  • Introductions And Conclusions
  • Conclusion Paragraphs
  • Conclusion Strategies
  • Conclusions
  • Tips For A Strong Conclusion
  • The Concluding Paragraph
  • Ending The Essay
  • Types Of Conclusions
  • Writing A Strong Conclusion
  • How To Write A Conclusion
  • Writing Conclusions
  • Guide To Conclusions

Thesis Statements

  • The Thesis Statement
  • Thesis Statements
  • Writing A Thesis Statement
  • Thesis Statement
  • Tips And Examples
  • Writing A Thesis
  • Writing The Thesis
  • How To Write Your Thesis
  • The Thesis
  • Thesis Statements
  • Guidelines For Writing A Thesis
  • Thesis Statements
  • Thesis
  • Thesis Statements
  • The Thesis
  • Create A Strong Thesis
  • How To Write A Thesis
  • Developing A Thesis
  • Guide To Writing Thesis Statements
  • Thesis Statements

Citing

  • When To Cite
  • Apa Documentation
  • Mla Documentation
  • Suggestions For Citing Sources
  • Research And Citation Resources
  • Citation Information
  • Mla Guidelines For Citing Poetry
  • Mla Style For Poetry
  • How To Format Your Paper

Argumentative Essays

  • Argumentative Essays
  • Argument
  • Argumentative Essays
  • Persuasive Or Argumentative Essays
  • Argumentative Essay
  • Argument/Argumentative
  • Argumentative Essays
  • How To Write A Good Argument
  • How To Write An Argumentative Essay
  • Writing Conclusions To Argumentative Essays
  • Argumentative Essay
  • Persuasive Essay Writing
  • Writing Concluding Paragraphs
  • Constructing The Argumentative Essay

Writing About Poetry

  • Writing About Poetry
  • Writing About Poetry
  • Writing About Poetry Q & A
  • Poetry Explications
  • Writing About Poetry
  • Writing About Poems
  • Explicating A Poem
  • Writing About Poetry
  • Writing A Thesis Paper About A Poem
  • How To Start A Poetry Introduction
  • Poetry Essay Structure
  • Poetry Explication

Expository Essays

  • Structure Of A General Expository Essay
  • Expository Essay Examples
  • Sample Expository Essay
  • Expository Writing
  • Expository Essay Model
  • Elements Of Expository Essays
  • Expository Writing Information
  • Expository Essays
  • Writing Expository Essays
  • How To Write An Expository Essay
  • Tips On Writing An Expository Essay
  • Expository Essays
  • Essay Map
  • Writing Expository Essays
  • How To Create A Strong Expository Essay
  • Expository Essay Writing
  • The Expository Essay

Research Papers

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UK English vs. American English

A shortlist of terms that do not translate the same from one dialect to another. Other countries in the Commonwealth use different words also, but I’m not trying to be thorough. This list might also seem random because I watch/listen to a lot of British material and pick up random lexicon. If I made a clear mistake let me know and I’ll correct it.

UK English = U.S. English

lift = elevator

flat = apartment

rubbish bin = trash can* 

telly = TV

wage packet = paycheck

CV = résumé

grey = gray

mate = buddy

biscuit = cookie

crisps = chips (tortilla, potato, etc.)

chips = fries**

hoover = vacuum cleaner

car bonnet = car hood

car boot = car trunk

number plate = license plate

football = soccer

tube = subway

(at the) cinema = (at the) movies

programme = TV show

curry house = Indian restaurant

mum/mummy = mom/mommy  

car park = parking lot

zebra crossing = crosswalk

mobile = cell phone

jimjams = pj’s (”pajamas” is an Indian word)

the Council = the County (when referring to local legislature)

E-numbers = artificial food additives, preservatives, and dyes

wellys = rain boots 

to nick = to steal

Detailed comparisons:

*An English “pedal bin” is a trash can with a foot pedal that pops the lid. American’s have those too, but we don’t specify the pedal. An American can you roll to the curb to be emptied is generally called a “garbage” can, but one indoors is called a “trash” can and if it’s small or woven it is a “waste basket.” Likewise there are a variety of other terms for “bins” in England, but I can’t remember them.

**The most confusing differences are often when it comes to food. For instance, English “chips” are usually wedge cut, fried potatoes that an American would not instantly consider a “French fry.” The equivalent to English chips in the US are called “potato wedges” or sometimes “potato fingers,” which as an American I find weird. English chips seem to rarely come in thin “fry” form and are most commonly in thick pieces. Meanwhile, Americans chow down on crinklecut fries, shoestring fries, waffle fries, chili fries, zucchini fries, and anything else they can get into the deep fat fryer.

An English “pudding” is not the flavored dairy custard Americans make with a mix, but is more like dense cake or sometimes bread with filling (which is specifically called “Yorkshire” pudding). American “pie” does not commonly contain meat or gravy (though we do eat chicken “pot” pie because it’s like a pot of stew in a crust), but pie is usually served as a dessert. Some American cities like New York and Chicago call pizza “pie” too. 

English milk chocolate candy (and I hear differing accounts on this) is much sweeter than American milk chocolate. Based on how I can only handle so much Cadbury chocolate in one sitting, I tend to agree. 

This is sort of food-related, but an English “pub” and an American “bar” are two very different kinds of establishments, so I hear. The following comparison is not true of all bars and pubs, but…You go to a pub to have a meal and a drink with your mates. You go to a bar to get drunk, laid, and possibly tattooed. These are the stereotypical (though not necessarily accurate) differences between English and American liquor establishments. You can still get plastered and make bad choices at a pub, and you can still have a quiet drink and a burger in a bar. Just don’t walk into a bar or pub for the first time and expect certain things (this paragraph brought to you by our mild-mannered English friend who thought it would be safe to wander into a bar in New York City before hastily wandering out again).

That’s all the comparisons I can think of off the top of my head. Please, if you’re from the UK or are just an American anglophile who watches lots of BBC, add whatever I’ve missed to the list! 

Stubborn

A/N: For the anon that wanted a reader-insert Thranduil’s wife (with a Bofur appearance) in Mirkwood. I hope you enjoy this!

Summary: The dwarves arrive in Mirkwood, and the elf!reader has to moderate Thranduil’s vehement reactions.

Word Count: 1,711

Warnings: None, I think…


You loved your duties as Queen of Mirkwood. It brought you joy to plan feasts and ceremonies, to tend the luscious gardens that hid in the recesses of the woodland fortress, but most of all you loved to care for your subjects. The people of Mirkwood were so dear to you, and you felt their struggles and triumphs as your own.

You did not particularly love the duty of mediating your husband, King Thranduil’s sternness. The vigorous, impulsive, headstrong elf you had fallen in love with was slowly replaced by a suffering, brooding king as Greenwood fell to the dark powers of Arda. You knew of his troubles, and the very good reasons for his withdrawing, but it did not make your task of persuading him to be mildly pleasant any easier. You loved him with everything in you, but he did not always make the relationship easy.

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Tattoo ink contaminants can end up in lymph nodes, study finds 

Microscopic particles from tattoo ink can migrate into the body and wind up in lymph nodes, crucial hubs of the human immune system, a new study has revealed.

The tiny particles – measuring a few millionths to a few billionths of a centimetre – include molecules from preservatives and contaminants such as nickel, chromium, manganese and cobalt, researchers reported in the peer-reviewed journal Scientific Reports.

Tattoo colouring is composed of various organic and inorganic pigments, and can be contaminated with toxic impurities.

Besides carbon black, the second-most common ingredient used in tattoo inks is titanium dioxide, a white pigment also used in food additives, sunscreens and paints.

The chemical has been associated with delayed healing, itching and skin irritation.

‘No one checks the chemical composition of the colours, but our study shows that maybe they should,’ says a researcher. Photograph: Alamy

Potions: Crafting Liquid Magic

A great many things have been happening at a wonderfully quick pace lately, and while that’s all fantastic in its own way, it’s left me no time to actually make this post, despite my interest in doing so. However, now that everything is slowing down and I’m finding the time to catch up on things, and after receiving an ask related to this process, I can finally share one of the most important parts of my practice: Potion Brewing. I’ve made a few small posts here and there about it, and how one might use certain ingredients, but I’ve never really gotten into the process. With that said, here are my thoughts on potions, and why they’re an incredible part of any witch’s skillset. 


When approaching potion brewing in witchcraft, there are several things one has to keep in mind. First and foremost, there is very little historical evidence to say that practitioners of either witchcraft or cunning craft ever actually brewed potions. Most of the time, the concoctions were herbal tonics, simples, or other forms of herbal infusions used in medicine (queue the major importance of witches also taking up and learning about herbalism). I have seen posts floating around which indicate that the image of the witch and the cauldron comes from medieval beer brewsters which, while I haven’t done enough research on to confirm or deny, would not surprise me in the slightest. Now while their may not have been much actual historical creation of potions in the way we think of today, the lore has always been there. Even if witches never did brew potions in the past, we do now, even if it is an underrepresented subject. To my knowledge, there are only two titles which cover the subject of potions, one of which is so expensive that very few people will be able to purchase it. This means that potion brewing becomes something that each witch must develop on their own, if at all. Some never will, and that’s perfectly fine. But for those that want to, the road can be quite harrowing. 

The second things to remember is that Verdant Ones used in the creation of the potion are not just tools. Lavender is not good for love, basil is not good for money, and so on and so forth. Just as you have your own spirit, so do the Verdant Ones, and they are far from simple tools to be used and disposed of when the creation of the work is complete. In truth, the creation never will be complete if the botanicals are treated poorly and never addressed. Many may disagree with this, but how then may any botanical be “good for” something or another if not by the agency of the spirit within? Is it the chemical makeup? It is the atomic structure? However you view it, you are tapping into something more than the phsyical body, and must give that aspect the necessary attention. Otherwise all you have done is created a tea with no real magic at all save for whatever power you may have given yourself. This brings me perfectly to my next point. 

A potion is not just a tea. I have seen several posts which have perpetuated this idea, and it’s something which I vehemently oppose. Posts encouraging the creation of luck and success potions, love potions, and the like which have ingredients seemingly pulled at random from a table of correspondence, all thrown together hastily in a tea-pot or simply set to steep in a cup. Looking at the creation of these, there is little to no respect for the agency of the botanical, and even less towards the actual process. The creation of a potion is not as simple pouring hot-water over an herb or two you got from the store, then drinking it. Potion brewing is an involved process wherein the practitioner must return life to the botanical if they purchased it, or whisper to the living Verdant One from which they wish to take. Potion brewing is the coalescing of spirit into matter, blending power and fragility in a dance that combines the embodiment of the kingdoms of Land, Sea, and Sky. Potions are liquid magic, and their creation is an involved process. With all that said, let’s get on the actual process. 


1) Know Your Goal

This may sound simple, but it is truly the most difficult part of the brewing process. What is it you seek to accomplish through the creation of this potion? This will tell you how it will be used, as well as the medium by which it will be create. Are you seeking out luck? Probably best to stick with a water-base take it internally. Do you seek love and, if you do, are looking to attract a new lover and enfold a specific person in your grasp? If the former, you may elect to go with a potion applied topically, crafted of an oil which will hold the scent well. The latter, they’ll need to take it internally, meaning you could perhaps craft an oil in which to cook their food, or an additive to a drink (bearing in mind that while this may be viewed as an older method, it is illegal in many places to add something to someone’s drink without their knowledge). This will also tell you what you can and cannot use to create the potion. If taken internally, it’s probably best to avoid botanicals that are known to be offensive to the body. My exceptions to this rule are mandrake and henbane, both being poisonous creatures. However, in my use of them, I have found that they rather enjoy working with people, and not always in negative ways. There is a reason henbane has been reputed be work well in love potions for centuries. Mandrake is glorious when seeking the creation of lust. Mind your experimentation, though. While these beloved ones may enjoy working with people, they are strong and must be treated with respect. When I include henbane or mandrake in a potion, its usually in the amount of ¼ tsp per a five-cup potion. If the potion is to be used externally, you’ll need to stay away from anything which may irritate the skin. If you are using it to mark a space with protection, to lay a curse, or any other goal, you may decide how best to employ it. 

2) Create the Recipe

Perhaps the most frustrating part of the process, the creation of the recipe for the potion itself. This process may take only a few minutes if your goal is simple. However, I know that this is something that will take me days to complete. As I sit and ponder over how to create something that will properly meet my needs, I look at several factors. How will it look? If ingesting, how will it taste? Is it going to be something you need to keep on the shelf for a while? If so, what’s the best way to keep it from rotting. Once you have all this information, you can begin formulating. Many people will begin with simple potions consisting of only a few herbs and spices, maybe a little chanting, and that will do. There’s certainly nothing wrong with that, as it’s how I started. It’s when you move beyond this that things get interesting. Something I find often overlooked is the inclusion of tinctures in potions. These little alcohol-based extractions may be considered potions in their own right if crafted with care, but the use of them to expand what may be included in a potion will blow the doors of the potion-brewing process wide open to those who want to use them. Tinctures allow you to add in a more concentrated form of a botanical, as well as include botanicals which you may not otherwise be able to include. A good example here is myrrh. Myrrh resin is a wonderful, and quite oily substance, with many older herbals reporting it to be a wonderful antibiotic. However, rendering it into a potion through boiling in water is…not a good idea. The gum will melt to the bottom of the vessel, and begin to burn, making the whole thing near impossible to clean. But, through the tincturing process, the gum in the resin falls away, and you are left with pure myrrh extract in the alcohol. Now you are able to use it in potions. Formulating a potion is an incredibly fulfilling process, and easily the most rewarding. What you put in it is what you’ll get out of it. 

3) Brewing the Potion

This is the fun part. Once you’ve got your potion formulated, it’s time to brew. But this comes with its own set of difficulties. For me, potion brewing is the perfect union of the kingdoms of Land, Sea, and Sky, all through the heat of the fire that renders all through other. This may also be viewed as the union of the four elements by some, though that’s not a particular concept to which I pay much mind. It is a delicate process, requiring the brewer to pay attention to the formula they have crafted, and the needs of the Verdant Ones therein. Are there roots or barks/spices in the potion? They will need to decoct for at least 20 minutes covered, and you’ll have to chop them beforehand. Flowers? They need to be added only after the potion has been removed from the heat. Any herbs will be best brewed with a low simmer, lest they be burned by the heat. But it can go further than that. Have you included animal parts? If so, what are they? The heart of a chicken will need a different brew time than the bones of a rat to infuse properly into the liquid. I don’t deal much with the inclusion of metals or stones, but each of these will also need to be considered as their own bodies which need infusion time. But this has only focused on half the equation so far. Certainly, potions should have the physical attributes of the included bodies. But what of the spirit? This is where the true finesse of the work comes into play. When you are brewing, you are not just crafting a tea, as stated before. You are coaxing the spirit virtue of each material included therein to release itself from the body it has known, and comingle with those other bodies and spirit virtues to create something new. You are not just brewing. You are, through the power of the fire within, creating a new spirit virtue from all those blended together. Those spirit virtues are transformed by the act of brewing, and through the witch’s will, something new is born. This also begs the question of how you will brew. Will you brew over an open flame (my preferred method)? Will you infuse for a full lunar cycle in the windowsill? If so, you will need alcohol to prevent rot. Are you going to be taking any particular ritual actions while brewing, such as stirring certain ways or numbers of times? Are you going to encant a spell while you stir? Will you be able to keep your will and fire focused on the goal if such actions are taken? Are you waiting for a certain moon phase to brew the potion properly? What about after? Will you be working further potency in it by placing it upon the hearth to cool and “cook” further? Or will you be gathering in the spirits of the home to assist as it is brewed? So very many ways of brewing exist, and it’s up the practitioner to decide how they will best go about the process. All that really matters through the process itself, though, is that the witch bring those spirit virtues out of their bodies, and into the brew. I oftentimes see the cauldron spoken about in books as a tool to “symbolically” stir in virtue. There is no symbolism here. You are literally stirring the virtue together in the womb/tomb that is the cauldron. Quite an experience when you really get going. This leads to the last part of the process…

4) Employing the Potion

After all that work, it’s time to employ the potion however you have elected. It’s here where you want to begin paying close attention. If your potion was supposed to excite lust, how did you feel after drinking it? Are the effects strong or weak? If you are trying to induce good luck, how was the day/night that followed the drinking of the potion? How did it taste? How did it smell? What did it look like? And most importantly, did it actually accomplish your goal. Don’t try to fool yourself here. Potion brewing can be incredible if you are honest with yourself. If it didn’t work, what might you be able to do to rectify that? What can you change? Do you think it was something wrong with the formula, or the brewing process? Was your will not focused? Was your mind wandering to places unrelated. Certainly there’s nothing wrong with thinking of past lovers when working a love potion, but if you’re head was occupied with your late car payment, you’ll hardly get the love you want. Conversely, such a thing may work well to help attain money through means of a potion. 


The art of potion brewing is certainly not an easy one, but it is one that is so greatly rewarding. A witch who can brew a potent potion is a witch who is closer to the the Verdant realms. The spirit interaction teaches the practitioner the respect of each and every body used in the creation of each brew, and help them to foster a closer connection with those spirits in the future. In my own opinion, every witch should have the experience of creating a proper potion, if only for the ability to see if it’s something that fits in with their craft.

 If you want to know more, I highly recommend Daniel Shulke’s books “Ars Philtron” (a book that’s literally dedicated to the art of potion brewing, and doesn’t skimp on the use of things like mandrake) and “Viridarium Umbris” (a book about the path of the Verdant Ones, and how a practitioner may comes to know the spirits within the bodies themselves). They’re expensive, but both are on the site “Scribd,” which has a number of fantastic books on witchcraft. If you have any questions, please feel free to shoot me an ask. 

10

The Lesser Antillean iguana (Iguana delicatissima) is a large arboreal lizard endemic to the Lesser Antilles. Another common name for it is the West Indian iguana. It is one of two species of lizard of the genus Iguana and is in severe decline due to habitat destruction, feral predators, hunting, and hybridization with its sister species, the green iguana. The Lesser Antilles iguana has a more blocky, shortened face than the green iguana and lacks the distinctive stripe pattern present along the green iguana’s tail. The feature that most easily distinguishes these two species is the large, round scale that the green iguana has below each ear hole but which the Lesser Antillean iguana lacks.

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anonymous asked:

If you don't mind me asking, what's it like having a bluetongue as a pet? I have a pair of fire skinks, but the majority of the time that's mostly like having pet dirt. Don't get me wrong I love them to bits, but in a bioactive setup they're not exactly high maintenance or demanding in terms of care, so I don't think the comparison is all that close.

Ah the beautiful yet elusive fire skink. I was very tempted to get one for a long time, but eventually decided against it because although they are drop-dead gorgeous, as you know, they aren’t exactly the most visible or interactive reptile.

Blue tongues are pretty much the opposite. They are big, bold, active, and many of them are downright personable. Of course there are lots of species/subspecies of blue tongue skink and they vary quite a bit in size, temperament, and care difficulty. My Skimbleshanks is a Northern blue tongue, which is the largest species and often considered to be the calmest and friendliest too (though individual animals may differ), so this is going to be mostly from a Northern bluey perspective.

Care-wise the most challenging aspects of owning a Northern bluey are that they need a large cage (they will use all the space you give them), a varied diet (veggies, fruits, greens, meat, insects, etc), and high quality heat and UVB. They are hardy animals overall and humidity isn’t a huge concern (though other bluey species have higher humidity needs). Here is a write-up on how I make Skimble’s homemade food (though he gets other foods in addition to this).

As for what it’s like to interact with a bluey: Skimbleshanks is absolutely delightful. He has zero fear of humans. He enjoys coming out of his enclosure to explore; his AP cage used to be level with the floor and I would slide a door open when I was hanging out in the room so he could come and go as he pleased. Sometimes if I forgot to open the door when I was in the room he would scratch at the glass.

I’m hesitant to use the word “cuddle” with all the anthropomorphic associations attached, but Skimble loves to burrow into warm, soft things including underneath my shirt/hoodie when we are chilling on the couch. It’s not unusual for him to doze off when he’s cozied himself into a blanket or my shirt. He’s a smart little guy too; he has learned the tone of voice I use when he’s going somewhere/doing something he shouldn’t and will freeze when he hears it (because he knows if he continues I’ll pick him up and put him back in his cage).

Now I just want to be extra, extra clear that not every skink, even other Northerns, will be so amicable. Skimble is also the only bluey I’ve cared for and though I’ve had him for several years (and done a lot of research on blue tongues) I am by no means an expert. I know @krisym works with blueys a lot, though there are other Reptiblrs too. When I was starting to do research before getting Skimble I used this very detailed care sheet a lot; though I don’t adhere to it perfectly it’s a great starting point.

Anyway sorry for the small novel. Hope that helped! I really, really love blueys, I’m always surprised that they aren’t more popular.

Foodie Friday: Angel Food Cake with Elderflower Syrup

Image and Recipe Credit to MarthaStewart.com

Warning: Please use caution whenever harvesting wild flowers, fruits, or herbs, and do not consume them unless you are absolutely certain that they are edible and safe. If there is even the slightest bit of doubt, please resort to purchasing the ingredient in a store or local apothecary for safety’s sake. 

Ingredients For Syrup:
-4 cups water
-4 cups sugar
-20 elderflower heads
-Skin and juice of 2 lemons

Ingredients for Cake:
-1 cup sifted cake flour
-1.5 cups superfine (castor) sugar
-14 large egg whites (at room temperature)
-1 tbsp room temperature water
-½ tsp salt
-1.5 tsp cream of tartar
-2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Syrup:

1. In a heavy saucepan, combine water and sugar and bring to a simmer over high heat, stirring occasionally until simple syrup is dissolved. Remove from heat and set aside.

2. Remove the elderflower heads from their stems, discarding the stems and placing the heads in a large heat-safe bowl. Add lemon skin and juice to bowl and pour simple syrup into bowl, stirring to combine.

3. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a towel and allow to sit at room temperature for at least 2 days and up to 4 days. Strain syrup through cheesecloth-lined sieve and discard solids. Syrup can be stored in an airtight container for several weeks.

Cake:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. With a fine sieve, sift together flour and ¾ cups sugar four times.

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer on medium speed, beat together egg whites and water until foamy. Add salt, cream of tartar, and vanilla; beat until soft peaks form. Increase speed to medium-high and sprinkle in remaining sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time. Beat until stiff but not dry. 

3. Transfer to a large bowl. In six additions, sift dry ingredients over meringue, folding in quickly but gently.

4. Pour batter into an ungreased 10-inch tube pan with removable bottom. Smooth top with an offset spatula. Run a knife through batter to release air bubbles. Bake for 35 - 40 minutes, until golden brown and springy to touch.

5. Invert pan on its legs or over the neck of a glass bottle and let cool completely, about an hour. Carefully run a long offset spatula or knife around the inner and outer perimeter of the pan to release cake. Place on a plate, bottom side up; cover with plastic wrap until ready to use.

9. Serve each slice with some elderflower syrup poured around the base, and whipped cream and berries on top.

Magical Ingredient!

Many of us are at least somewhat familiar with the iconic scene from Monty Python and the Holy Grail in which French soldiers throw insults at King Arthur. “Your mother was a hamster, and your father smelt of elderberries!”

Elderberry was and continues to be a favorite food in Europe and in certain areas of the United States, in varying forms from floral syrups and fried flowers to fermented elderberry wines (and elderberry preserves are simply divine when spread over buttered toast!). The elder tree, however, holds some long-standing symbolism when it comes to witchcraft and magic!

Historically speaking, elder is one of those trees that has straddled the line between a positive symbol and a negative symbol, depending upon what side of the line you were viewing it from - much like how yew was often associated with death from a Christian viewpoint but associated with protection and flexibility from a Norse perspective. In the case of elder, however, it had much more to do with the belief that elder trees were more often than not inhabited by spirits (comparable to the belief that there are spirits that inhabit Jericho roses).

In Celtic lore, elder has a particular link to the fae, as it was considered to be a guardian tree. Faeries would gather about the tree, and if one were to sleep beneath the elder’s branches, she would dream of the faerie realm of Tir na nOg. In pre-Christian Ireland, elder was a sacred tree held to such a high esteem that it was forbidden to break its twigs.

Perhaps one of the most well known legends regarding elder is the Danish Hyldemor, or Elder-Mother. The Elder-Mother was a spirit who lived within the tree who was respected for her healing and nurturing capabilities. Before approaching the tree to harvest the berries, flowers, or wood, it was a common practice to ask her permission with the promise of returning the favor in the next life: “Old Woman, give me some of thy wood and I will give thee some of mine when I grow into a tree.”

With the spread of Christianity, the tree’s association with spirits and faeries would take a dark turn, and elder would go from being a sacred, positive tree to being synonymous with evil and the devil. The Elder-Mother’s rather kind demeanor was twisted into that of a witch. Its red sap and hunched shape evoked the image of a hunched old witch who would bleed when cut, to English eyes. In Ireland, the tree went from being a guardian of Otherworld to being a tree whose branches were cut by witches and used as magic horses.

Furthermore, elder took a darker turn when (much like how the tomato was once associated with the forbidden fruit in Genesis) Christian legends associated elder with the crucifix and Judas’ suicide, as reflected in the carol of the Twelve Apostles:

The twelve apostles they were standing by,
Their roots in the river, and their leaves in the sky,
The beasts all thrive wherever they be.
But Judas was a-hunged on an elder tree.

Not everywhere in the British Isles was the tree feared, though, and it maintained some of its magical qualities. In Scotland, it was believed that if you stood under an elder tree during Samhain, you could witness the faery host riding by, and elderberries harvested on Midsummer’s Eve would confer magic powers. And in the Isle of Man, elder continued to be a home for elves and fae, which protected against witches and malevolent spirits if it grew just outside the front door.

Again in Scotland, elder would even have a positive association in Christian communities, as its twigs would be fashioned into a cross and hung over stables and barns to ward off evil spirits and hearse drivers would use elder-handled whips to banish negative influences.

Today, elder is regaining its positive associations thanks in part to its prolific production of flowers and fruits and in part to its place in ancient Celtic lore. It is a popular addition to Beltane floral rites, and its healing properties are being brought back into home remedies. For instance, the green sticks were said to be able to cure warts when rubbed on the affliction and then burnt, and elder twigs were believed to banish the evil spirits which caused toothaches. Today, its berries and flowers could be used to help alleviate cold and flu symptoms in herbal remedies.

Its associations with the fae make elder a wonderful tree for inviting faeries into the garden, or for honoring them on an altar with elderflower decorations and offerings. In kitchen magic, elderberry preserves, elderflower syrup and cordials, elderflower teas, et cetera, all can bring energies of prosperity and health to food. In addition, elder foods can be used as offerings or can be cooked and eaten as a way of connecting more with the fae or with one’s femininity.

Since elder has a strong association with banishing negative influence, elderflower infusions can be used as a liquid for asperging. Its wood and twigs can be fashioned into charms or amulets for various spells, its flowers and berries added to jars and bags, and the tree can be kissed or hugged to invite good fortune (if you’re not afraid of getting some strange looks from passerby, of course)!

Consider the role elder may play in your life, and how its sweet berries and lovely flowers can bring health and positive energy into your kitchen!

May all your meals be blessed! )O(

Medicinal uses for common culinary herbs

(Found this useful and figured I’d share it)


 Category: Herbology Published: Wednesday, 19 September 2012 Written by Super User

Medicinal Uses For Common Culinary Spices

ALLSPICE - Active ingredient is eugenol, same as cloves. Topical pain relief, tea and mouthwash.

ANISE - Seven tsp. of seed to one quart water, boil down by half, add 4 tbsp. of honey, take two tsp to calm a cough. Drink tea for memory, aid digestion, and a wash for oily skin.

ANNATO - (Lipstick tree)- Lightly crushed seeds added to food is like natural gas-x.

ARROW ROOT POWDER - One tbsp in a cup of juice every few hours to relieve diarrhea. Poultice to soothe skin inflammations.

ASAFOETIDA - Buy the tincture in Indian shops. They add a drop to many dishes to relieve stomach pains (gas). Insect repellent. Topical use to heal ulcerated sores.

ASPARAGUS - Boil in water and drink the water for kidney problems. Dissolves uric acid deposits and promotes urination.

BASIL - Add fresh herb or seeds to boiled water to make tea for migraines and bed time restlessness. Douche for yeast infections, eliminates candida, gargle and mouthwash. Pregnant women should avoid medicinal use of basil.

BAY LAUREL - Heat leaves in a little olive oil to make a bay oil salve for arthritis and aches.

CARAWAY - Bring 2 cups of water to a boil and add 4 tsp lightly crushed seeds. Simmer for 5 minutes, then steep 15 min. Drink with meals to prevent gas, even for infant colic. Promotes menstruation and relieves uterine cramping.

CARDAMON - Digestive aid, eases gluten intolerance (celiac disease). Sprinkle powder on cereal.

CAYENNE PEPPER - Capsicum speeds metabolism. Capsicum cream and oils relieve arthritis and aches, not just by warming and stimulating blood flow, but also by blocking pain transmission by nerves. (blocks substance P) Prevents blood clots, heals ulcers. Cayenne and garlic in chicken soup really IS as effective as antibiotics after the onset of cold or flu. Cayenne dramatically drops blood sugar levels and should by avoided by hypoglycemics. Cayenne promotes excretion of cholesterol through the intestines. It increases energy levels and aura brilliance.

CELERY - Sedative. Active ingredient thalide. Seed and stalk, reduces hypertension. Celery seed tea for the kidneys as a cleanser.

CHERVIL - Steep in boiled water and apply with an eye cup for a wide range of eye complaints.

CHICORY - Liver cleanser, fat cleanser, dissolves gallstones. Prepare like coffee.

CILANTRO - Leafy part of coriander plant. Food poisoning preventative.

CINNAMON - Mouthwash, good for upset stomach. Simmer sticks with cloves for 3 min, add 2 tsp lemon juice, 2 tsp honey, 2 tbsp whiskey - as cold medication. Cinnamon is good for yeast infection and athlete’s foot. A 2% solution will kill both of these conditions. Boil 8-10 sticks in 4 cups water, simmer 5 min, steep 45 min, then douche or apply to athlete’s foot. Cinnamon reduces cancer causing tendencies of many food additives.

CLOVE - Use oil for pain relief for sore gums and toothache. Add clove oil to neutral oils for topical pain relief of arthritis. Small amounts of clove in a tea for nausea. 3 cloves in two cups of boiled water, steeped for 20 minutes, as an antiseptic and mouthwash. Former alcoholics can suck on one or two cloves when the craving strikes to curb the desire.

COFFEE - Although not a spice, it is commonly available in the kitchen. The caffeine in coffee can be used to alleviate headaches (particularly those caused by caffeine withdrawal.) Coffee enemas with olive oil are used to cleanse the bowels and are one of the safest and most thoroughly cleansing enemas available. Caution and common sense must be used to avoid dependency. Hot black coffee sipped through a straw helps break up mucus congestion in the lungs.

CORIANDER - Coriander tea can be used topically to remove unpleasant odors in the genital area for men and women. The tea can be held in the mouth to relieve the pain of a toothache. Can also be drank to relieve flatulence and indigestion.

DILL - Bring one pint of white wine almost to a boil, remove from heat and add 4 tsp of dill seeds, let steep 30 minutes and strain. Drink 1 ½ cups a half hour before retiring to sleep well. To the same directions, but substitute for the 4 tsp of dill, instead add 1 tsp each of anise, caraway, coriander and dill to stimulate the flow of breast milk in nursing
mothers. Chewing dill seeds removes bad breath.

FENNEL - Chewing fennel seeds relieves bad breath. Fennel seed tea sweetens breastmilk. Fennel tea relieves colic in infants.

FENUGREEK - Use as a tea as an excellent relief for colic and fever in children. 1 tbsp ground fenugreek seed taken in the diet daily can reduce cholesterol. 8 tsps of seed presoaked in 4 cups cold water for 4 hours, then boil for 2 minutes, strain and drink 1 cup a day to ease hay fever attacks.

GARLIC - Ultimate antibiotic. Useful even for sexually transmitted diseases. Strongly recommended for hypoglycemia, and diabetes. Destroys intestinal parasites. Reduces cholesterol. Repels insects, and reduces sting effects of insects and red ants.

GINGER - Anti-nausea tea, blood thinner, substitute for coumadin. Boil 2/3 cup of freshly chopped root in 1 gallon water, wrapped in cheesecloth (or old nylon stocking) until the water is yellow. Then soak towel and lay on bruises and sprains while still hot, to ease them. Stimulates a delayed period. Warm ginger tea is good to break up congestion and fever. Ginger is one of the few herbs that easily passes the blood/brain membrane and is used in conjunction with other herbs that are meant to have an effect on the mind. Pregnant women should avoid medicinal concentrations of ginger.

HORSERADISH - Freshly dug root is added to a cold-pressed oil of choice (such as safflower or olive) to make a massage oil for muscle aches and to break up chest congestion. Grate fresh ginger and horseradish together and make a tea to stop post nasal drip.

LEMONGRASS - ½ cup dried leaves to 2 pints of water, simmer for 10 minutes, and sip to bring down fevers.

LICORICE - Tranquilizer. Balances nervous system, stimulates liver functions. Long term usage (over 3 months) could cause liver damage.

LOVAGE - Steep root for 15 min in a cup of boiled water, drink after every meal to prevent flatulence.

MARJORAM AND OREGANO - Over 2 dozen related species. Use as a tea to help reduce fevers and break up bronchitis. Drink tea to relieve cramps and irregular menstruation. Eases suffering of childhood diseases like mumps and measles.

MINT - (Peppermint and spearmint)- Peppermint tea for migraines, nervousness, stomach disorders, heartburn, and abdominal cramps. Herpes sufferers can take 2 cups of tea a day to ease the symptoms when the virus is active. Mints are used to buffer the action of other herbs that have uncomfortable effects on the stomach and intestines. Can be used in any combination for flavor.

MUSTARD - 1 ½ cups of dry yellow mustard in a bathtub of water for sprained backs. Make a paste with water and apply to knee and elbow sprains till blisters appear! Mustard and ginger plaster for deep rattling coughs - 1 tsp each mustard and ginger powder mixed with 2 ½ tbsp of olive oil. Rub over chest and back and put on an old T-shirt (or cover with cloth diaper).

NUTMEG AND MACE - Gas, indigestion, nausea, vomiting, and kidney problems - make a paste of powder with cold water and then add to boiled water. 1 tbsp of powdered nutmeg produces a floating euphoria for between 6 and 24 hours. Can cause near constant erections for men during that time. Side effects are bone and muscle aches, burning eyes, sinus drainage, and limited diarrhea.

ONION - Egyptians swore their oaths on onions; Grant refused to move his army until he got 3 railroad cars full of onions; interviews with hundreds of people who lived to 100 plus all indicated a heavy intake of onions in the diet. Onion is an excellent dressing for burns. Crush sliced onions with a little bit of salt and apply to burns. Apply sliced onion to bee and wasp stings. For asthma: puree an onion, cover it with brandy and let sit overnight, strain it, filter it through a coffee filter, and refrigerate. Take 2 tbsp 20 minutes before expected onset or before going to bed.

PARSLEY - The purifier. Chew for halitosis. A few sprigs provide 2/3 the vitamin C of an orange, lots of vitamin A, and the important amino acid histidine, which is a tumor inhibitor. Parsley tea is good for kidney problems, painful urination, and kidney stones. One cup of parsley to 1 quart of water makes a strong tea. Two cups of parsley to 1 quart of water, steep an hour and drink warm, as an aphrodisiac. In Spain they have found that feeding parsley to sheep will bring them into heat at any time of year!

PEPPER (black)- Pain relief from toothache, brings down a fever.

ROSEMARY - Flower tea for the breath. Boil water with rosemary in it to make it safe to drink. Diuretic and liver aid, increases bile flow. Two handfuls of flowering tips into 2 cups of good brandy, soak 10 days, strain and seal. Mouthful twice daily. Oil of rosemary is a natural anti-oxidant, and stress reliever; sniff for headaches. Chop a double handful of twigs and put in a pint of olive oil for one week, and use as a muscle liniment.

SAGE - Chew a fresh leaf and put on insect bite to reduce sting and swelling. Sage tea for the throat. Two cups of sage tea a day for a week will dry up mother’s milk. For the itching of skin problems, steep a handful of freshly crushed leaves in a pint of boiled water for one hour, and bathe the area, then sprinkle with whole wheat flour. Sage tea
prevents blood clots.

SAVORY - (the herb of love) One quart boiled water, 3 ½ tbsp fenugreek seed, and steep for 5 minutes. Remove fenugreek and add 2 handfuls of savory leaves, steep 50 minutes and drink 2 cups, as an aphrodisiac.

TARRAGON - 1 ½ tsp cut dried herb in 1 ¾ cups boiled water, steep 40 minutes, drink warm for insomnia, hyperactivity, depression, or nervous exhaustion. (or anything “jittery”) For digestion steep a handful of dried leaves in a jar with apple cider vinegar, stand 7 hours, strain and seal. Take 1 tbsp before each meal.

TEA - Caffeine relieves migraines. Tea drinkers suffer less hardening of the arteries than coffee drinkers. Black tea kills dental plaque.

THYME - Antibiotic. A tsp in ½ cup boiled water to make a gargle or mouthwash, to prevent bad breath, tooth decay, and cold sores. Drink for cold, flu, fever, and allergy symptoms. As a bath for nail fungus and athlete’s foot, and also as a douche. Compress for bumps and bruises. Health liqueur - 6 sprigs of thyme in 1 ½ cups of brandy for 5 days, shaking daily. Take several times daily when you feel a cold coming on. Thyme is good for killing bacteria and for relaxing tense muscles. Relieves migraine headaches and stomach cramps.

TUMERIC - Anti-oxidant. Powdered turmeric on any ulcerated skin condition or mix with enough lime juice to make a paste and put on herpes sores, mumps, chicken pox, etc. Dip a cloth in turmeric solution to wash away discharges from conjunctivitis and opthamalia. As an anti-inflammatory, turmeric’s properties are as good as 1 % hydrocortisone and phenylobutazone. Take ½ tsp in juice in the morning and evening to aid in removing fat around the liver. Turmeric, bay leaf, clove, and cinnamon all tripled insulin performance in metabolizing blood glucose in a test tube! Field tests proved to greatly enhance production of insulin by the pancreas. “Spicecaps” from Great American Natural Products have a pinch of cinnamon, 2 cloves, ½ bay leaf, and 1 tsp of turmeric per capsule.

VANILLA - Sexual stimulant. Soak a cotton ball with vanilla extract, squeeze it out, put it under the tongue and it will quickly calm hysteria.

VINEGAR - Naturally brewed apple cider vinegar deserves a course all on its own. It is one of the finest blood cleansers and arthritis cures known. Take 1 tbsp per day of equal parts vinegar and honey in water to taste to cleanse the blood and reduce inflammation from arthritis. Be sure to use naturally brewed vinegar, as the white cheap stuff in the grocery store is actually acetic acid, a petroleum by-product, and pretty well useless. (except as a window cleaner!)

BAKING SODA - Although not an herb or a spice, this is especially recommended for people who are allergic to MSG. Many people will use a meat tenderizer for bee stings,
but it contains MSG which can cause some people to swell. Instead, make a paste and apply directly to the insect bite to reduce swelling. You can also mix 1 tsp with water and take for relief of indigestion.

The above information was obtained from the following sources: 
The Herb Book, by John Lust.
“Heinerman’s Encyclopedia of Healing Herbs and Spices”, by John Heinerman.
“The Healing Herbs: The Ultimate Guide to the Curative Power of Nature’s Medicines”, by Micheal Castleman
“The Vinegar Book”, by Emily Thacker

As a reminder, the above listed information should not replace the advice given to you by your health care professional. 

Rowan Morgaine

barnhouseeffect  asked:

Hello there. I was wondering how you feel about raccoon actor exploitation in films such as Guardians of the Galaxy and Pocahontas. It's like sure, they are getting good roles but are they being fairly compensated? What are the work conditions like? Are there good dumpsters on set for them to snack on? I really respect your opinion and hope you can shed some light on this for me.

Raccoons in major motion pictures like this are well taken care of and well compensated! A statute passed years ago says that any raccoon on set must be provided with at LEAST three trashcans per day of work, and they always get first dibs on any leftover or unwanted food. This is in addition to above-average pay for their services. Look at these happy little guys (all stars):

In all seriousness, raccoons on sets as models or actors are generally well taken care of and treated with respect to minimize stress. Movies typically go through a rescue/rehabilitation service like this one and the raccoons are socialized with their co-actors and taken good care of, like any other exotic animal on set. Here’s Oreo, the model for Rocket Raccoon, who I’ve heard is very well-behaved and good friends with his voice actor:

Pregnancy Changes You

A/N: So I’ve had two anon requests for a Spencer x Reader where they both work for the BAU and she’s currently pregnant. He’s even more in love than before and is enjoying the changes her body is going through. @coveofmemories

                                                             —–

“How’re you feeling today?” Morgan asked as you walked into the BAU that morning. 

You were pregnant. Seven months pregnant. You were the size of a bowling ball and were waddling like a penguin. “How do you think I’m feeling?” you snapped playfully. “I feel fat. My boobs are humongous. I can’t even see me feet anymore. This kid is using my bladder as a squeeze toy, so I have to pee every five seconds…” As you continued to ramble, Spencer laughed and came to stand by your side. 

“At least you have that beautiful pregnant lady glow around you, right?” Morgan said. Spencer shook his head - a warning. Don’t get me started on that. “Right?” He looked scared as you glared at him. 

Never. Miss. With a Pregnant Woman. “You wanna know where that glow comes from?” you yelled as the rest of the team came to say good morning. As your voice picked up, Rossi immediately turned around and walked away. “That pregnant lady glow is sweat. Right JJ? From throwing up incessantly. The glow ain’t cute.”

JJ ran up to your side, empathy flowing from her pores as she wrapped her arms around you. “I understand. I get you. You’re almost there.”

“Thank you,” you pouted. “I’m just so tired of feeling like this.”

Apparently, Rossi hadn’t walked over completely. He’d just gotten you a muffin. A chocolate chip muffin. “I come with food,” he said, bestowing on you a peace offering that would hopefully spare him from your pregnant rage. “Your favorite.”

“JJ, why do I want to cry? Why does Rossi bringing me a muffin make me wanna cry?” you exclaimed. “I don’t understand!”

Everyone just chuckled as you bit into your muffin and JJ assured you that it would all be over soon and the rewards would be great. “After this is all over, you will have a beautiful baby boy and this will all have been worth it.”

The clock struck 9, so as the rest of the team returned to their desks and offices, Spencer helped you lower down into your chair. You were weeks away from not being able to sit comfortably at your desk. “Just so you know,” he said, bending down to give you a kiss, “I still think you’re beautiful and if it’s possible, I think I’m more in love with you now than I was before.”

You smiled warmly up at him wondering how you had ever gotten so lucky. “I don’t understand how that’s possible. I feel gross.”

“You don’t look it. That’s in your head” he said, kissing your hair. “And I plan on proving it to you.”

                                                            —–

At this late stage in your pregnancy, Hotch allowed you to work in whatever way you felt comfortable. If that meant walking around and dictating your paperwork to an intern that was fine. If it meant taking all kinds of breaks in order to stretch, it didn’t matter. But by the end of the day each day, you were ready to go home and get into comfortable clothes. The idea of having denim attached to your body in any way anymore was killing you. Sweatpants, a loose t-shirt and no bra were ideal. “When we get home, I want you to put on whatever is most comfortable to you,” Spencer said as you walked hand-in-hand to the elevator. 

“I plan on it. Those gray sweatpants, my Nirvana t-shirt and absolutely no bra whatsoever,” you laughed, grabbing at your now monstrous rack and massaging your permanently sore boobs. 

It was obvious that Spencer was quite enjoying your new endowments - very large endowments. You’d grown nearly two cup sizes since the fourth month of your pregnancy, going from a C to an E. “I can give you a boob massage when we get home?” he said hopefully. 

The elevator doors opened, leaving another member of the Bureau to look at your enormous rack as you snorted uncontrollably. “You just want a reason to touch me,” you said. 

“I would be lying if I said that wasn’t part of it, but if it’ll help that’s what’s most important.”

“Of course,” you laughed as you walked through the parking structure to the car. “You wanna make me dinner too?” Being utterly lazy sounded great right now.

Apparently, he had already planned on it. Nothing fancy, just some chicken and pasta. In addition to food and a chest massage, he said he also had a little something else planned, but he refused to tell you until you got home.

                                                           —–

While Spencer made dinner, you sat lazily on the couch, feeling so much better without your bra on. “Hey, babe! It’s like the movie Alien over here. Come look,” you laughed, lifting up your shirt to where you could clearly see the indentation of a foot. “This is a beautiful yet disgusting miracle. I look like I’m about to explode.”

He leaned over the couch and kissed your stomach, saying hello to your baby boy, whose name you still hadn’t decided on. “I can’t imagine what it feels like to have him in there, but you are just as beautiful as the day we met. I’ve noticed lately that you haven’t felt pretty, so I went out and got you some stuff. Walking back toward the bedroom, you could hear the crinkling of a plastic bag. “I picked up some cocoa butter, lotion, which I will apply to your legs after we’re done eating, and some lime green nail polish that I will put on your toes, because you keep saying you want a pedicure but you don’t want anyone you don’t know touching your feet.”

“You’re gonna pamper me?” you sighed happily. You attempted to get up from your position and kiss him, but the baby was getting in the way. “I can’t get up, I’m sorry.”

Before going back into the kitchen to get dinner for you both, he propped you up with a pillow to take some of the pressure off your back. Two months was a long time. This kid better be adorable. As you finished dinner, Spencer washed up, returning to the couch with your lotion and cocoa butter. While you massaged your stomach with the cocoa butter, feeling your little man’s foot along the way, Spencer lathered his hands in the lotion and began to glide his hands up and down your legs. “Oh wow,” you said, relaxing a bit as Spencer worked his magic. “This feels nice. Can I get these more often?”

“Whenever you want,” he responded, squeezing tighter on the tense muscles in your legs. “Feeling better than this morning?”

You were. It wasn’t as if you didn’t enjoy pregnancy at some points - watching him kick and hearing his heartbeat were about the sweetest things you’d ever experienced, but the wear and tear on your body was brutal, and in that aspect, you were ready for it to be over. On top of that, you couldn’t wear what you used to so you didn’t feel as confident. 

As he pulled out the nail polish, applying it to your toe nails which you honestly hadn’t seen in months, you began to fall asleep, but when he was done, you noticed you felt more relaxed than you had in weeks, which in turn, made you feel more beautiful. “Thanks, babe,” you yawned as he picked you up to bring you to bed. “You still owe me that boobie massage.”

He walked you toward the bedroom as he gathered you to his chest. “I owe you one,” he laughed. “Or if you want, we can do that as we fall asleep.”

“Yes, please,” you said happily. “You do know how to make a girl feel beautiful.”

LIGHT BULB

omg omg all the studies that are popular for ball python breeders to quote about small spaces and inactivity were not done in their natural habitat!!!
they were done on human habitated pasture and agriculture land where much, if not all of the trees have been razed!!

the location of an additional food source (crops or livestock feed) would draw in rodents, and the lack of trees and brush would push out birds forcing those ball pythons to choose a different prey than they would usually eat- ro.dents!

then, the other part is they have only gone hunting for ball pythons during the day when ball pythons are inactive, further cementing the idea they don’t even move! why would a nocturnal animal move during the day?? they generally don’t, not never, but generally.


THIS ALL MAKES SENSE NOW

2

After turning four last July, the first day of school has come for little Prince George. He will attend Thomas’s Battersea in south west London. The school has a policy of being kind, gentle and letting each student discover ‘’who they are, with all their quirks and idiosyncrasies’’. Today George has met his teacher, teaching assistant and 20 other classmates. He also did a quick tour of the premises, finding his peg, his classroom and the toilets. The first few weeks will be half days only for the little Prince, as is custom at Thomas’s. After that, the four year old students will attend lunch as well, where balancing their tray will be a huge challenge. After that, they will attend full days. The school has compulsory ballet classes for all students, but homework is optional. Furthermore, pupils will be learn to be unfailingly polite and have to shake their teacher’s hand every morning and afternoon, where eyecontact is very important. There’s a strict emphasis on healthy food, with no additives or hydrogenated fats and limited in both salt and sugar, the school believing a healthy diet will stimulate the brain. 


“You got me a Hanukkah sweater?”

Pairing: DCEU Barry Allen X Gender Neutral Reader

Summary: The reader and Barry have been dating a while, and Barry is going to be meeting the reader’s parents. The reader celebrates Christmas with a family who has a lot of traditions, but Barry celebrates Hanukkah but doesn’t have a big family or a lot of tradition, so the reader does their best to combine the two.

Warnings: It’s pretty much rated G.

“You got me a Hanukkah sweater?”

You and Barry had been together a while, but he still had yet to meet your family. Your family was a bit…unconventional to say the least, and you weren’t really looking forward to the holidays because you knew they’d expect you to bring your boyfriend along so they could meet him. Barry was constantly asking you about meeting your family. He knew they were important to you and what a big part of your life they were, and he wanted to make you happy. It didn’t help much that you had met Barry’s dad so early on, and that Barry didn’t really have much of a family beyond him.
As Christmas approached, your family kept calling you about the holidays. It was tradition for everyone to eat dinner and spend the night Christmas Eve at your grandma’s house, wake up and open gifts Christmas morning, eat some homemade waffles, watch Christmas movies and specials, do Christmas karaoke, and of course everyone wore ugly Christmas sweaters. To you it was second nature, but it would be a lot to ask of Barry. Not only did he not celebrate Christmas, but he didn’t have big family holidays when he was growing up.

You had an idea and sent a text to your family, then you texted Barry. You wanted to make sure both Barry and your family were happy, and you knew this was the best you could do. You wanted Barry to feel like family, hopefully this would make him feel at home.

“So I’ll pick you up around 7 on the 24th and then we stay overnight”
“What do I wear”
“Just wear something comfortable and maybe pack jeans and a t-shirt for the next day”
“Are you sure that’s it”
“Yeah it’s pretty casual”
“I just really want to look nice”
“You always look nice”
“I just know how important this is to you”

A few days later you were outside Barry’s ready to pick him up. You really hoped your family would help you out on this one.

Your grandma answered the door and gave you a warm welcome.
“Have you grown since the last time I saw you? Oh you must be Barry it’s so nice to finally get to meet you. I’ve heard a lot about you.”
Barry’s face turned a faint blush. He couldn’t help but turn red knowing that you talk so much about him.
Sure enough, your family took your request to heart. They made some traditional Jewish foods in addition to the usual Christmas Eve dinner, and placed a Menorah on the table. Even though Barry wasn’t much of a traditionalist and hadn’t really had a traditional Hanukkah since he was young, you wanted to make sure that you weren’t leaving him out of the holidays.
“Is that noodle kugel?”
“Yeah, I asked my aunt to look up a recipe because I know it’s your favorite.”
“You didn’t need to do all this.”
“I hope I did everything right, I mean I don’t know too much about-”
“Babe, it’s the sweetest thing anyone’s ever done for me.”
“You really like everything?”
“It’s perfect. I love you so much.”
“I love you too.”
Dinner went perfectly and your family couldn’t help but love Barry, and who could blame them? He acted a perfect gentleman in spite of all of his nerves, and you couldn’t help but feel like the luckiest person alive as you curled up next to him on the fold-out sofa. Hopefully the next day would be just as great.

Your younger cousins woke everyone up because they were thrilled to open presents, and you were even more thrilled to give Barry his.
The time came for you and Barry to exchange gifts. Yours was in an envelope with a bow on the outside. His was in a box, sized obviously for a sweater.
He insisted you open yours first.
“Barry I can’t believe you did this. This must’ve cost you a fortune.”
In the card was a short little note from Barry, and two tickets, front row, to see your favorite band.
“It doesn’t matter. As long as you’re happy.”
Barry opened his next.
“You got me a Hanukkah sweater?”
“Well I don’t know if I told you but in my family we wear ugly sweaters and do karaoke and I know you probably won’t-”
Before you could finish, he had already put the sweater on.
“It’s just…you’re a part of the family now and I know that it wouldn’t be right of me to make you wear a Christmas sweater and oh there should be something else in there too.”
You also got Barry a watch. On the reverse side of the face, you engraved, “I know it’s easy for you to get lost in time, but at least you’ll have this as a reminder of me.”
While your family started getting ready for the day, you and Barry sat by the tree
“You really didn’t have to do all this for me. I mean your family and the gifts and the-”
“You know I wouldn’t have it any other way.”
“I’m really lucky.”
“Barry I’m the lucky one. This is the best Christmas-Hanukkah hybrid I’ve ever had and it’s because you’re here. I love you so much.”
You placed your hands around his neck and leaned in, your lips gently touching his. It wasn’t exactly appealing to have a full makeout session in your grandma’s living room, so it was fairly PG, but nothing could hold you back from embracing what really was the best day you’d ever had.


@parkerbenjaminpeter @spider-holland @a-fangirl-in-too-many-fandoms @heyitsemmie @myaftertaste @that-kitty-dork@zefiroza@swee-tragedy @underoossss@spideysosterfield @middlefingermichelle @rosaetum@whenwewere17 @perks-of-being-a-labyrinth @peachyyvibes@sam-a-holland@samhollandsfreckles @webslingerholland@whatta-babe@parkerroos@cahtastrophie @cynderros@cmonpeterman @spideyfloof@parkerscupcake @tiny-friggin-human

Sunburn 

Pairing: EXO Junmyeon (Suho) X Reader (ft. OT9)

Genre: Fluff

Word Count: 1,073

A/N this was such a cute idea. this got me hyped for summer


You and Junmyeon were in early stages. He’d asked you out almost a month before, after the members of EXO had had enough of your constant flirting back and forth, pressing him to make a move. All nine members had planned a trip to the beach to relax and Junmyeon had asked you to come along. You had politely declined at first due to not wanting to ‘intrude’ on the boys’ trip, but Junmyeon had told you they were more than happy for you to go.  

You had your beach bag packed. Sun cream, flip flops, your purse, a towel, your book – was there anything else you needed? You slipped into your sandals and stuffed your phone into the back pocket of your shorts which you wore over your bikini bottoms. You also had on oversized flannel shirt over the top of your outfit. It was sunny outside, so you placed your sunglasses atop your head, sitting comfortably in your hair. Taking a last glance at yourself in the mirror and adjusting your hair, you took a deep breath. You weren’t nervous but anticipated your first day out with EXO as a group whilst also being Junmyeon’s girlfriend.

Hearing a beep outside, you spotted his car through the window. Grabbing your bag, you rushed out the door, locking it behind you. You noticed Sehun clambering out the front seat.

“Oh, it’s fine, I’ll sit in the back,” you said. Sehun shook his head.

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