gardening on a budget

The Domestic Garden Witch: Po-Ta-Toes

So maybe you’re a college witch with limited space and money, limited to the one window in your dorm. Or, maybe you’re a witch without extensive backyard space who wants to start up a magical garden. Perhaps you’re a kitchen witch who wants the freshest herbs right at her fingertips.

For many witches, having a garden seems to be a bit of a no-brainer. After all, plants and magic go hand-in-hand. Plus, when thinking of a witch, it’s hard not to think of a cottage in the woods with a little vegetable garden out front. Unfortunately for the majority of us, our cottage in the woods is a tiny flat, and our garden out front is a windowsill with limited space.

This is when it comes time to embrace your craftiness and bring your garden indoors! Not only does it place your garden in a convenient location, it also allows you to freshen the air, recycle what would otherwise harm the earth, and embrace your witchy green thumb!

Samwise Gamgee’s Dream Come True!

Originally posted by straightcray

Okay, so if you follow my blog, chances are that you’re wondering if this whole potato theme for today is because of St. Patrick’s. I promise, I’m not enforcing Irish stereotypes on purpose. I just really like potatoes, and when it comes to gardening, it’s a bit of a disservice to overlook this vegetable. After all, when we think about kitchen gardens or home gardens, we think of herbs or flowers, and not about the veggies we eat that live a rather subterranean existence. But potatoes - those lovely little brown lumps that we can get for a couple dollars per five pound bag in the supermarket - are not only inexpensive. They’re extremely hardy little plants that can be grown rather easily.

You don’t need much to get started with this project. First, you need “seed potatoes.” This is not hard to find. Simply take a few potatoes and allow them to grow a bit. They will sprout a few short little stalks from the eyes on the surface. Save these, and get potting mix and two medium to large plastic pots that can easily stack one inside the other.

Carefully cut a few panes out of the inner pot as in the picture above, then place the inner pot into the outer one. Fill the pot part way with soil, add your seed potatoes, and cover them with potting mix. Water as needed until the potato plants peek up out of the soil. Cover them again and repeat this process gradually until the pot is full.

In roughly three months, you’ll have potato plants that are ready to begin harvesting. Simply lift the inner pot up and pluck your potatoes as needed from the sides! Fresh potatoes, free!

Ideally, this method of potato cultivation can help feed a family of four for about a year. My family had used this method, and our family of five was able to stay fed for a year off of two of these planters (we like potatoes… and we eat them a lot…)

Originally posted by relatable-anime-moments

How Can I Witch This?

Potatoes are very useful in witchcraft, and you can find out some of their magickal uses in my Foodie Friday article about Seafood Gnocchi. As for growing them, many of those properties remain the same!

As with any gardening venture, add crystals to the soil to promote healthy and fruitful plants, draw sigils and symbols on the pottery or planters, and incorporate protection or fertility ingredients into the soil - such as eggshell or coffee grounds.

Outside of the useful culinary benefits of having a potato planter on your front porch, a garden such as this is useful for outdoor space cleansing in small spaces, and for inviting prosperity into your home or property since potatoes represent such comforts as full bellies and pockets.

Since a small number of potatoes can be used to produce a much larger quantity in this planting method, you could even turn them into a prosperity or slow growth money spell! Pour your intent into the seed potatoes when you plant them, and as they produce new crops, give them water and food as an offering in order to keep the spell fed! Some of the potatoes produced in this way can also be converted into offerings or used in spellwork, in addition to being used to cook with!

The possibilities are practically endless where potatoes are concerned! See what you can do with these nifty little spuds!

And may your harvests always be bountiful!

Blessed Be! )O(

pjo musical: the rundown

so i went to see the lightning thief with @angelicomma yesterday and um. oKAY GUYS GALS AND NONBINARY PALS LEMME TELL U ABOUT THIS MOTHER!FUCKIN! SHOW!!!! because it was SO GOOD this is just like. the short list of what i loved about it because oh my god 

prepare for the longest post ever 

  • the set was such an aesthetic? it was all very metallic like there was scaffolding and greek columns with graffiti on them? it was very chb and very nyc and overall a Blessing 
  • every time they needed to show a different location they’d do it with the lights so like there were these lights lining the scaffolding that would change color ?? in the underworld they’d flash red, yellow and orange and were made to look like fire and near the ocean theyd be blue and if they were talking about trees itd be green and! if they wanted u to focus on a certain part of the scaffolding it’d be a different light color than any of the other parts which was rad af
  • the overhead lights were used really well too like when percy was singing about being the son of poseidon or when there was water the lights would be blue and when they were in the forest theyd be green
  • there is an entire song about how they hate new jersey and how they refuse to die in the garden state. know this
  • the show was very low budget like oh my god it was great
  • they didnt make some of their own props so sally walked in once with a trader joe’s bag and also the most important bag in the world (containing the master bolt) was a fucking jansport 
  • their representation of water was just to attach toilet paper rolls to leaf blowers and turn the overhead lights blue like what even
  • they covered the first 4 rows in toilet paper at one point 
  • also they fuckin deca-casted everyone except for percy (chris mccarrell, the light of my life actually he was so good) 
  • jonathan raviv played chiron, auntie em, random chb girl in a bike helmet and braids (?), random tractor guy (?), a bus driver, a train conductor, hades, and poseidon and im probably missing someone. he had very distinctive characters for all of them not to mention horse puns 
    • “the gods are kind of dicks”
    • medusa’s eyes were just light up swim goggles
  • sarah beth pfeifer, who probably has the best comic timing ive seen ever, played clarisse, katie gardner, a fucking squirrel?, mrs. dodds, lotus casino girl, random camper assistant to mr. d, and thalia 
    • *chases annabeth down a flight of stairs with a sword while screaming* 
    • “for their sixteenth birthdays my friends all got cars. I got a fern and a mason jar!” 
    • “ARROWS ARE MADE WITH WOOD. I REFUSE TO PARTICIPATE IN AN ACTIVITY THAT CONDONES VIOLENCE AGAINST OUR ARBOR BRETHREN!”
  • they had the most roles and they were GREAT 
  • george salazar was such a wonderful grover and mr d oh man 
    • mr d’s whole gag was he’d kick a chair when he got pissed which was hysterical bc the camper assistant would start pouting every time and he also wanted to turn percy into a dolphin 
    • “grover, are you ever going to wear pants again?” “NOPE!” 
    • his solo song was about thalia and how he couldnt save her talk about EMOTIONAL he cried
    • dam jokes
      • we might have more drachmas if you didnt spend them on those DAM SNACKS” “HEY! IT WAS THE HOOVER DAM” 
  • let me talk about. carrie compere for like multiple hot seconds bc GODDAMN GIRL CAN SANG 
  • she was such a good sally. can she be my mom. she sang a song abt percy being special and wonderful and i got a lil teary 
    • “you saved my life, percy. It’s time i learned how to live it.” cryin g 
  • her silena was really funny? like very whiny but very funny.
    •  “every time i bring a boy home, my mom’s there in her nightie […] she steals my mascara and all my dates!” 
  • she also played sort of charon? underworld guide in this awesome gold dress (she looked SO GOOD) who smacked grover’s goat ass (?????) 
    • “you know, bringing people to the underworld isn’t my only job. I also have a band. wanna hear a demo?” “not really?” “sorry, i can’t hear you over this SWEET ASS RIFF” 
    • We got everyone! we got kurt kobain, we got beethoven. any requests?” “um, do you have josh groban?” “we will.” 
  • JAMES! HAYDEN ! RODRIGUEZ! was sO GOOD AS LUKE
  • THERE WAS A GOOD KID REPRISE AND I WAS SHOOKEN 
    • “being a good kid gets you nowhere at all” bruh 
  • they couldn’t have a scorpion onstage so luke just. fucking stabs percy in the back??? 
  • He was also a really funny ares and gabe!! 
  • ok and my gal KRISTIN STOKES 
    • fun fact abt me and kristin stokes ….. so we were walking in the same direction after stage door and so me and @angelicomma just walked with her….to the train…. she gave us dessert recs…… and talked about the show (she’s so salty about how rangey her big solo is but trust me she was so good on that song) and also waitress with us…. it was the best experience of all time she is so nice and cool and was wearing jurassic park leggings how rad is she oh my god
    • her annabeth? was awesome? she was witty and tough and aggressive and i was ABOUT IT 
    • she called out sexism all the damn time 
      • “annabeth, i get it. do you know how many schools i’ve been kicked out of?” “yeah, percy, but when boys mess up they get a second chance.” 
      • “hey, annabeth, who’s your dad?” “he’s a history professor.” “i thought everyone’s dad was-” “a god? that’s my mom. sexist.” 
        • longest yeah boi ever 
    • the moment where she betrayed luke at the end??? YES GIRL
  • chris mccarrell was such a perfect percy i am elated 
    • “Tartarus? LIKE THE FISH SAUCE???!!!?!?!” 
    • *swings riptide like a lightsaber while making lightsaber noises* 
    • *packages medusa’s head* “To Mount Olympus. Signed, Percy Jackson and Annabeth Chase.” “the gods will think we’re impertinent!” “*winning smile* we are impertinent.” 
    • *pouts* “i know how to hold a sword! like this!” annabeth corrects him and he swings it “oh wow actually that’s a lot easier” 
    • in good kid he was like? running around the stage and climbing the scaffolding and shit? and i cried??? the no mom line was the WORST i wanted to actually scream and his voice is so pretty 
    • and he was so shook by his own powers oh man 
    • he was just. so good at the twelve year old thing it was fantastic he was all fidgety and Dramatic ™ god bless
    • he loves sally so much!!! all the demigods were salty af abt their parents and he was just quietly singing like “my mom loves hugs and scary movies” and i just. screamed quietly
  • there were rlly cute percabeth moments too. 
    •  percy’s knocked tf out the first time annabeth meets him (she infiltrates his dream a lil) and he sings a lil song abt how she’s beautiful and stuff and he wakes up and she’s all “YOU DROOL IN YOUR SLEEP” shook 
    • she shows up at capture the flag (percy hasnt officially met her yet) and he points at her and was just “gasps YOURE MY DREAM GIRL!” and annabeth side-eyes him hardcore and he goes “UM. THE GIRL. FROM MY DREAM.” 
    • “the god is my mom. sexist.” “NO NO I LOVE GIRLS!” annabeth is shook yet again and percy panics and is like “I MEAN UM THEYRE VERY NICE” 
      • percy gets serious side eye from luke
      • it’s great  
    • when percy gets stabbed they almost kiss and then grover RUNS ONSTAGE “HEY! here’s your ambrosia percy” goddamn it was DRAMATIC
  • im definitely missing shit but oh boy it was so so good
  • i’d kill a man for that soundtrack  
  • if you have the chance (and the money) it’s just. such an Experience and everything i could have ever dreamed of. the cast is great (and theyre all so freakin NICE s/o to kristin especially). 
  • i’d highly recommend it!!! A+ 1000/10
The Domestic Garden Witch: Living in the Gutter

So maybe you’re a college witch with limited space and money, limited to the one window in your dorm. Or, maybe you’re a witch without extensive backyard space who wants to start up a magical garden. Perhaps you’re a kitchen witch who wants the freshest herbs right at her fingertips.

For many witches, having a garden seems to be a bit of a no-brainer. After all, plants and magic go hand-in-hand. Plus, when thinking of a witch, it’s hard not to think of a cottage in the woods with a little vegetable garden out front. Unfortunately for the majority of us, our cottage in the woods is a tiny flat, and our garden out front is a windowsill with limited space.

This is when it comes time to embrace your craftiness and bring your garden indoors! Not only does it place your garden in a convenient location, it also allows you to freshen the air, recycle what would otherwise harm the earth, and embrace your witchy green thumb!

Get Your Head Out of the Gutter! Now Get Dirty!

Growing up, my family had always been about thinking creatively when it comes to home improvement. After all, my mom’s family used to flip houses, and my dad’s family encourages frugality. After a while, certain projects just happen to crop up where you least expect it.

So it should come as no surprise that eventually it came time to change the rain gutters. By the time Dad was finished, we still had a few extra feet of unused gutter, so Mom decided to put it to good use. I still wish I had taken pictures of her gutter garden! Regardless, it’s a simple project, and if you’re an engineering student, you can easily adapt this same project for PVC or other materials that are used for your university projects!

The concept is fairly easy. Cap off the ends of the gutters, drill drainage holes, lay down a layer of gravel to encourage drainage, add soil, and add plants. Voila! Your very own gutter garden! It’s also a cost effective project, as gutters aren’t overly expensive and can often be picked up or repurposed from other home improvement projects. But the nifty thing here is what these gardens can be used for.

In the home, they can be hung up on the walls for decoration, or they can be hung up in the kitchen to provide an easy-access herb garden. If hung closer to the ground, catnip can be planted for your feline’s drug-induced pleasure. The possibilities are near-endless!

Because rain gutters are designed to run along roof edges, they can be set up in ways where they curve or turn at an angle. Consider ways in which you can wrap the garden around corners or along walls to create a visually stimulating indoor garden!

How Can I Witch This?

As usual with container gardens, think of ways in which you can bring some magic to the container. Correspond your color with intent, or decorate with sigils, symbols, and crystals! In the gravel layer, add a crystal or two to promote growth, health, and prosperity. Select plants that correspond to your intentions, and place the planters strategically in the home.

Rain gutters are particularly useful for a bit of magic, too! How? Well, consider their purpose. The movement of water around the home to avoid stagnation, and the draining away of excess. Use your rain gutter garden to encourage energy movement in the home, draining away negative energy and encouraging a fresh flow of positive intention!

May Your Harvests Always Be Bountiful! )O(

3

I live in a tiny apartment with not a lot of sunlight, but I try to make do growing what I can.

This is my little window sill garden, I’m growing peppermint and the flower we were given for free when shopping one day, which is so exciting! Also I’m growing broccoli seed sprouts and I just started them two days ago and their just starting to grow!!

6

Gard3n Witch Giveaway Time!

*This giveaway is in no way affiliated with Tumblr.*

Alright, lovelies, this giveaway contains things useful for the green witch just beginning her journey, or the well-seasoned witch simply looking for some fun trinkets from the PNW! Everything shown in picture #2 has been collected from my own property up here in chilly Western Washington. Anyway, the contents of the giveaway are broken down below by picture. The winner gets everything here (plus any little surprises I feel like including)!

Picture #1:

  • 1 Greenhouse seed starter tray.
  • 5 Seed packets (lavender, eggplant, chamomile, mixed garden bean, a really cool geometric broccoli)
  • 3 Self contained seed starter kits (tomato, strawberry, watermelon).

Picture #2:

  • 2 dried roses with leaves (light pink & dark red).
  • 1 vile of apple blossoms from last years apple crop.
  • A bundle of baby pine cones from an Alder tree!
  • A bundle of dried sage & rosemary.
  • Pale green moss.
  • 1 Cockatiel feather.
  • A mix of dried herbs from my garden (English thyme, sweet marjoram, pineapple mint).
  • A dried, pressed periwinkle flower.
  • Small bundle of dried dill blooms.
  • 4 dried daisy buds.

Picture#3:

  • 1 Small pouch of Mugwart.
  • 1 Small pouch of Kava Kava.
  • 1 Small vile of activated charcoal.

Picture #4:

  • 1 Lemon Lavender candle.
  • 1 Small white candle with rune of your choice carved into it (I have Raidho carved into the one shown, but if you win, you can pick whatever rune you like).
  • 2 Boxes of cone incense (Lavender & Patchouli).

Picture #5 & 6:

  • 1 Jar of a lovely floral/herb mix! This mix contains lavender, pink rose, hibiscus, marjoram, tulip petals, rose hips, and a bay leaf. It has not been infused with intent, so it can be used for whatever purpose you see fit.

RULES

- Must be 18+.

- Must be a resident of the U.S. (I cannot ship internationally, due to the nature of the items I am shipping).

- Obviously, you’re gonna have to fork up your address for shipping purposes if you win.

- You CAN NOT re-blog this to any giveaway blogs! If you do, you’ll be barred from the contest. This is for the witchy community only! :)

HOW THIS IS GOING DOWN

- Re-blog to enter for your chance to win! Just ‘likes’ will not count. It must be re-blogged. And hey…I might even pick a runner up to send a mystery surprise to!

- You must be following me @thegard3nwitch to be eligible.

- Only one entry per person! Re-blogging this a million times will not get you a million entries, it will still only get you one entry (I do this just so that people don’t end up spamming their followers, because that’s not very nice :P)

- The giveaway will end at midnight on April 30th! I will be using an automated random generator app to select the winner, so everyone has a fair shot. The winner will be announced within a week of the giveaway’s conclusion.

- The winner will have 24 hours to respond once notified.

Alright guys, have fun!

**None of the dried herbs included are meant for ingestion. Even if they are edible, they have not been cleaned & processed up to health code regulations. Don’t eat them! I am not liable for you stomach aches if you do! Stay safe!

The Domestic Garden Witch: Souper Recycling Ideas!

So maybe you’re a college witch with limited space and money, limited to the one window in your dorm. Or, maybe you’re a witch without extensive backyard space who wants to start up a magical garden. Perhaps you’re a kitchen witch who wants the freshest herbs right at her fingertips.

For many witches, having a garden seems to be a bit of a no-brainer. After all, plants and magic go hand-in-hand. Plus, when thinking of a witch, it’s hard not to think of a cottage in the woods with a little vegetable garden out front. Unfortunately for the majority of us, our cottage in the woods is a tiny flat, and our garden out front is a windowsill with limited space.

This is when it comes time to embrace your craftiness and bring your garden indoors! Not only does it place your garden in a convenient location, it also allows you to freshen the air, recycle what would otherwise harm the earth, and embrace your witchy green thumb!

Soup and Coffee Tins? Perfect!

So spring break is over and students all over the country are hunkering down for another quarter (or semester) of frantic studying, testing, and praying for sleep while pulling all-nighters. However, what’s likely also on the minds of these students is the need to have access to fresh ingredients on a budget. Well, college witches, search no more!

Chances are that in packing up some food for your dorm, you’ve also managed to amass a sizeable collection of soup cans and coffee tins. Whether your diet is exclusively cold Spaghetti-O’s and coffee or if you’ve just never gotten rid of the can from your sick day chicken noodle soup, these tin cans are useful as seed starters, herb planters, and rustic decoration.

Like any container garden, the process is simple. Carefully puncture a few drainage holes at the bottom of the can, provide a layer of gravel, add soil and seedlings/seeds, and water. But the fun is in what you can do to make these little DIY planters have a bit of personality! For that, we jump straight to some witchy talk!

How Can I Witch This?

I know, this container seems fairly self-explanatory. Sigils, symbols, runes and whatnot painted or drawn on the can to promote health and whatever else the plant corresponds to, and crystals added to the soil for the same reason. But I wanted to take a step back and consider the container itself for a moment.

In previous Domestic Garden Witch articles, I’ve focused on what you can do with the containers rather than what the containers might link to in witchcraft. In this case, I would like to change that. Tin cans, while inexpensive, are produced today not from tin (usually), but from aluminum or steel. Depending upon what the can stores, it could also be tin-plate steel. Regardless, these metals have some influence in what you can do on a magical level.

First, tin is a wonderful metal with a bit of history in witchcraft. In many traditions, it is most strongly associated with healing, prosperity, and money spells. Consider growing plants such as basil or rosemary in containers made with tin, allowing the metal to correspond with the uses of these herbs in your spells.

Aluminum is inexpensive, fairly plentiful these days, and actually does have a use in modern witchcraft despite its lack of historical magical attributes. Today, it can most often be associated with thriftiness, reflection, malleability, and travel. If you’re looking to work spells which encourage financial responsibility, or introspective thought, consider using aluminum cans with the appropriate plants and crystals.

Man has used steel quite a bit throughout history, and while we tend to have a stronger bond with iron (iron having been one of the first metals we’ve worked with, after copper and bronze), steel does have a few magical properties that have survived. Like iron, steel is most strongly associated with protection (so much so that in a few practices where metals are significant considerations, it’s acceptable to use an athame of steel in place of iron). If your tin can is actually made of steel, as many coffee cans are, consider growing plants such as rosemary or tomatoes (as starters) whose properties resonate quite strongly with iron and steel.

Not sure what your container is made of? Check to see if it’s magnetic. If it sticks, chances are that it is made of steel or has a high content of iron. If not, then it is most likely aluminum. Ultimately, however, you’re going to want to work with your gut feelings. If you don’t feel that your container brings anything to the magic, then don’t incorporate it into the spell, opting instead to just make use of the thriftiness of the idea. If you have a steel can but feel that it works best for love spells, then by all means grow that lavender in it!

May all your harvests be bountiful!
Blessed Be! )O(

Student Council Prez [12]

Episode 11 - Episode 12 - Episode 13
Words: 7.8k
Genre: Fluff, Slice of Life, High School!Au

Jin’s mansion was overwhelming, stretching over acres and acres of land. It was safe to say that it could be double or triple the size of Yoongi’s (which Yoongi defensively said that it was simply because his own parents didn’t care much for a luxurious house). It had perfectly shaped hedges, some in the shape of hearts or elephants. Numerous windows brought light into the rooms, a courtyard so large that it held two limousines and a fountain literally shooting water straight into the air like it’s own water show. It was too much.

You were more than overwhelmed, pinching yourself to make sure it’s not some sort of delusional dream or you’re hallucinating; it might as well have been Cinderella’s castle.

“Why do I have to come along again?” You tug on Yoongi’s sleeve, whispering.

He smirks to which you roll your eyes at. “Because from when school ends to seven, your time is mine. I payed for it.”

Keep reading

The Domestic Garden Witch: Not So Jarring Kitchen Herbs

So maybe you’re a college witch with limited space and money, limited to the one window in your dorm. Or, maybe you’re a witch without extensive backyard space who wants to start up a magical garden. Perhaps you’re a kitchen witch who wants the freshest herbs right at her fingertips.

For many witches, having a garden seems to be a bit of a no-brainer. After all, plants and magic go hand-in-hand. Plus, when thinking of a witch, it’s hard not to think of a cottage in the woods with a little vegetable garden out front. Unfortunately for the majority of us, our cottage in the woods is a tiny flat, and our garden out front is a windowsill with limited space.

This is when it comes time to embrace your craftiness and bring your garden indoors! Not only does it place your garden in a convenient location, it also allows you to freshen the air, recycle what would otherwise harm the earth, and embrace your witchy green thumb!

Apple Sauce, Jars, and Kitchen Herbs

Let’s face it. I work in an Italian kitchen, and much of the cooking I do at home is also influenced by Italian cuisine. As a result, I find myself constantly in need of herbs such as parsley, basil, rosemary, oregano, and thyme. While all of these plants are fairly easy to grow in various gardens, sometimes you need something inexpensive, easy, and within arm’s reach when cooking.

For this project, all you need is a few mason jars (if you don’t have any lying around, mason jars are very inexpensive and sold at most grocery stores in the canning aisle), some apple sauce snack cups (preferably consumed and cleaned), some wooden wicks (easily purchased online from companies such as the Candlewic Company), water, soil, seeds, and a box cutter or Xacto knife.

Make an incision in the center of the bottom of the apple cup long enough to fit the end of the wick. Insert the wick and fill the cup with soil and seeds. Remove the lid from the mason jar, discard the topper disc, and fill part way with water before resting the edge of the cup on the rim of the jar. Screw on the fastening ring, and voila! You have a very simple, very cheap herb garden to place in the windowsill. Since the wick passively draws water, the only time you’ll need to add water is when the jar runs out or when the water level isn’t high enough to be in contact with the wick.

Pro-tip: Be sure to trim the plants regularly - this is a garden meant to be harvested from regularly so that it doesn’t get too large. If needed, the roots can also be pruned and trimmed to help keep the plant small. If your plants begin to bud, pinch the buds off to encourage large, flavorful leaves.

How Can I Witch This?

When it comes to incorporating witchcraft into a simple garden like this, the possibilities are aplenty! Consider enchanting the water or using moon water in the jar, or if you’re into using crystals, place amethyst or clear quartz into the jars to help empower the water. Decorate the jars with sigils, runes, and symbols for growth, health, and prosperity!

The soil itself can be worked with, incorporating eggshell, ashes, or other magical substances that can help encourage the plants to grow healthy and large. You can also label the jars for their respective herbs and incorporate decorations on the label that correspond with the herbs you’re growing!

Consider different ways where you can incorporate magic into growing your herbs with this type of garden, and how it can help you with your kitchen witchery!

May your harvests always be bountiful!

Blessed Be! )O(

Things I Bought to Save Money

That sounds counter-intuitive, but part of saving money is shopping with intention. I’m not talking about just intending to go shopping and then spending money; I mean thinking purchases through, evaluating if the short term cost would have long term benefits. 

To make it on this list, the items had A) be used for something I would have spent money on anyway and B) had to see somewhat regular use. No one-time only products here. 

I saved up for every one of these, but they were worth it. 

1) A mini-washing machine. This is sometimes known as a camping washing machine or countertop washing machine. It’s as small as the name implies. They cost anywhere from 20 to 50+. Ebay has a ton of them with different functions and sizes. 

Why I bought it when I’m broke af: I live in an apartment with no washer/dryer hookups. There is a laundromat across the street and a few units in my apartment building, but to wash and dry one load of laundry I paid 3.50 (I often had more than one) and had to compete with a lot of other people for space. 

How it worked out: The thing paid for itself within two months. I had it for two years before it finally conked out and I had to buy another. 

2) A clothes drying rack. Mine cost 7 euro. Your cost may vary.

Why: Goes along with the mini washing machine. I hang up the wash in front of the radiator in the winter (it’s going anyway) or outside in the summer. Saves a ton in a very short period of time, and will last you for years. 

3) A ton of baking soda/vinegar

Why: Baking soda/vinegar are great for lot of reasons. Have a clogged drain? These work. Need to scrub your counters? These work. Accidentally left your clothes wet too long? Vinegar. Want shiny hair? Vinegar. Want to make a mug cake? Well, of course you’ll need baking soda. You can also find instructions online toward turning baking soda into washing soda and making your own laundry detergent, but that’s another post. 

4) A hot water bottle. You don’t actually have to buy one. Filling up a two liter with hot (not boiling, just hot) water works just as well. 

Turn down the heat to save costs, night or day. Before you get in bed, heat up the water, put it in the bottle, and be toasty. During the day I have an old blanket I sewed in half that I toss the bottle into the bottom of. 

5) A bike. Obviously this depends on where you live, but having to commute every day without a car was hard. A bike fixed that and is extremely low-maintenance. Buy used. 

6) The cheapest yoga mat I could find. I think it was 7 Euro three years ago. I’ll admit I got very lucky with that. There are a lot of videos online these days. I highly recommend anything from FitnessBlender, which is high quality and no cost to you. Working out at home (yoga for me was a game-changer in this chaotic budget life) even for five minutes a day reduces stress and saves gym fees. You don’t need a mat if you have a carpet, but the core message is the same: work out at home, not the gym. 

7) A Neti pot. This thing isn’t actually called neti, but it’s the same principle: you wash out your sinuses to prevent infections. I’m prone to that kind of thing seasonally, and being pretty regular with it has saved me money, misery, and time by eliminating doctor’s visits. Make you own saline solution with very simple recipes online. Nothing complicated about it. 

8) Gardening supplies. This can get very costly if you don’t keep an eye on it. However, a simple balcony garden in the spring, summer, and fall can supplement your food budget for months. Add a few flowers for fun and herbs for taste if you can afford it. Starting from seeds is the cheapest route. Using seeds from fruits and veggies you’ve already purchased and sorted is the cheapest. Gardening as also been proven to lower stress levels significantly. No room? A couple of plants on a window or in a tiny patch of earth you find is equally good. 

9) Good scissors.  Watch youtube and go on pinterest to find out how to cut your own hair. Man or woman, a good hair cutting utensil will pay for itself within one or two uses. Just keep the cuts relatively basic. If you aren’t able to do your own or don’t trust your hands to be steady, enlist somebody’s help. It just takes a few minutes. 

10) A mini-oven. Ignore this if you have a full-sized one, but I didn’t. I was also eating out a lot, which doesn’t work well when you’re on a budget. By learning how to bake my own bread, cake with few ingredients, lasagna, and other recipes, that 40 Euro investment ended up saving me hundreds last year, and in fact varied my diet greatly. Roast chicken. Yum. 

What have you bought to save yourself money? 

The Domestic Garden Witch: I Sea What Ye Did There!

So maybe you’re a college witch with limited space and money, limited to the one window in your dorm. Or, maybe you’re a witch without extensive backyard space who wants to start up a magical garden. Perhaps you’re a kitchen witch who wants the freshest herbs right at her fingertips.

For many witches, having a garden seems to be a bit of a no-brainer. After all, plants and magic go hand-in-hand. Plus, when thinking of a witch, it’s hard not to think of a cottage in the woods with a little vegetable garden out front. Unfortunately for the majority of us, our cottage in the woods is a tiny flat, and our garden out front is a windowsill with limited space.

This is when it comes time to embrace your craftiness and bring your garden indoors! Not only does it place your garden in a convenient location, it also allows you to freshen the air, recycle what would otherwise harm the earth, and embrace your witchy green thumb!

Where The Garden Meets The Sea

This is a little garden idea that might not be accessible for everyone. However, I live very close to the ocean, and as the days begin to get longer and the weather warmer, the beach becomes more and more of a destination (yes, even when you live right there, you still wind up wanting to go down and sunbathe, swim, explore tide pools, and spend the rest of the day cleaning sand out of places you didn’t know you had). It makes sense, then, to look at sea shells as an option for incorporating into garden witchery.

Most often, I’ve seen seashells used as no more than decorative additions to gardens, carefully placed among flower beds and succulent gardens as accents, or incorporated into the container either by having been cemented or glued in. But very rarely do I ever see shells be used as the container for a plant.

Ideally, you may have to use small succulents for this project, as their shallow root systems and limited size allow them to grow with very little trouble, depending upon what shell you’re using. Take a reasonably sized seashell (conches like the one pictured above work, but here on California’s Central Coast, I feel abalone is much more appropriate) and check to see if it has any breathing holes (some species have holes in the shells to facilitate the movement of water into and out of the creature’s gills without having to be exposed to predators - this is particularly noticeable in abalone). If it does not, carefully drill small holes into the bottom of the shell to promote drainage.

Using a fine gravel (aquarium gravel works well), place a drainage layer into the shell before adding your potting mix and plants. Water them and make sure they get plenty of sunlight!

This is an excellent way of bringing a bit of both the sea and the garden into a dorm room, windowsill, or even into a well-lit bathroom!

How Can I Witch This?

Continuing with last week’s theme of focusing on the material of the container rather than the decorations that can be added to it, seashells are an exceptional addition to a practice if you have a bit of a connection with the element of water.

Seashells have long been used for various reasons ranging from divination tools to eating utensils to decorative and fashionable trinkets, and even as currency (as is the case with cowry and abalone).

When working with shells, consider the creature they come from, and how they may play a role in your practice. For instance, abalone (I know I mention it quite a bit, but it’s one of my favorites and is strongly linked to local history) is a form of sea snail that was often caught for food. Not only is it therefore linked with prosperity and health in addition to water, it is also linked to well-being and financial stability - both the meat and the shells were often traded between Native American tribes in the area. The inside of an abalone shell is lined with Mother of Pearl, a beautiful substance that can be linked with money, protection, and feminine beauty. All of these aspects come to play in the way that I use abalone shells in my practice, and this is a great example of how to approach using seashells in your work.

Try to use shells that correspond with the plants that you’re using to enhance those properties, and you could even treat the shells much like you would stones if you make multiple gardens, creating garden grids that further enhance the energies you’re trying to bring into your life!

Using a seashell as a gardening container is a potent symbol for life-giving energies. Though the earth is most often associated with motherhood, so too is water linked with life, and the sea nearly always connected with feminine qualities in some way or another. As such, a shell garden like this could make for a beautiful and potent charm for expectant mothers or couples who are trying to have a child. If you’re a male witch trying to get in touch with your femininity, this is a great form of spellwork for such a purpose, as well.

So next time you walk along the beach and find an abandoned shell, consider whether such a gift is meant for such a beautiful union with the earth!

May all your harvests be bountiful!
Blessed Be! )O(