not a good picture i apologize

10

So yesterday whenever someone took out their phone and started taking pictures of me or my friend’s service dogs I took a picture of that person.

I made it very obvious that is what I was doing.

And most of them got offended. Because I was invading their privacy and being rude.

There was a lesson to be learned there, but I don’t think most of them got it. This is a mere 1/3 of the pictures I took. In one day.

This is what service dog handlers deal with. Imagine being someone with paranoia/psychosis and having strangers constantly stop and take pictures of you/your friends. It’s bad.

People- Do not take pictures of service dogs without permission. It’s rude and invasive.

Handlers, if someone does feel free to take a picture of them. Use a flash. Make it obvious. Maybe they’ll get the point.

I had 4 people (not shown) apologize and get the point yesterday. I talked to them about it. And I deleted my picture of them. They deleted their picture of me. That’s 4 more educated people out there.

In the meantime this little photo project of mine will continue. Because this is what I deal with everyday and it needs to stop. If being obnoxious gets my point across, good.

What I observed about nationalities working in a museum [in Vienna]

RUSSIANS (mostly older people)

-       speak German more often than English (and pretty well, too)

-       seem either cold or make jokes

-       just start speaking to you in Russian even though you don’t understand a word. Ask in Russian if you can speak Russian. The answer is always no.

-       sometimes make trouble (touch objects and such)

-       don’t always follow the rules (keep using the flash even though you’ve already asked them not to do it 3 times)

-       are the loudest and biggest groups

-      the young people explain stuff to their families

ITALIANS

-       walk in saying ‚buongiorno’ with a smile

-       behave really well

-       proud to see italian art

-       sometimes chat with you

-       are very happy if you can say even one simple word like ‚grazie’

-       even kids respect art

-       are not as loud as you’d think

FRENCH

 -       are the most low-key people ever

-       seem glad if you can respond to them in French

-       ask where to find a picture but don’t know the artist

-       never make any problems.

-       Good manners

GERMANS

-       humorous and make jokes

-        very nice

-       behave correctly

-       will laugh and say sorry when they set off the alarm

-       complain that we kick them out 10 min before we’re officially closed (‚WE STILL GOT 10 MINUTES!!’)

NORTH AMERICANS

-       literally the nicest people you’ll ever meet

-       will sometimes chat with you

-       ‚how did you know I was from the south? Where are YOU from?!’

-       smile a lot

-       apologize and say ‚thanks’ all the time

-       are cool with everything??

SPANISH SPEAKING PEOPLE

-       ‚Where is Velázquez? ;)’

-       Speak Spanish. Speak slower Spanish when they realize you don’t speak Spanish

-        Loud and friendly


AUSTRIANS

-       sometimes act as if they own the place

-       complain

-       smile

JAPANESE

-       ask for stuff in Japanese even though they don’t know yet that you speak it

-       may chat with you in Japanese

-       may insist on replying in English

-       ask if you’re really not Japanese while looking at you extremely suspiciously

-       apologize for speaking in English first even though you know Japanese and they had no way of knowing that

-       never ever make problems

-       either first to come or last to leave

-       really impressed with the art

-       try to figure out everything by themselves

CHINESE

-       out of Asian visitors the louder ones

-       speak mostly really good English

-       have really fast guided tours

-       good manners

People from wherever: you close in 20 minutes, why can’t you let us in? why are you closing so early?! Disappointed. *probably thinking Fuck Vienna*

tbc

anonymous asked:

Jumin meeting a barista MC? Is charmed tf off by her and he keeps coming back and finally asks her out on a date? I'm so thirsty for this man it isn't even funny.

~I really love this idea! Thank you for the request and I hope you like^^


[Jumin]

  • V had recommended the coffee shop
  • So he felt he had to go
  • He expected to get a cappuccino once and be done with it
  • When he saw you, he noticed that you were cute, but he didn’t think anything else of it
  • You smiled and handed him his cup
  • There was art of a cat looking up at him as he held it in his hands
    • “You did this?” he asked
    • “Yes,” you smiled, “I’m sorry, I just love cats. I hope you don’t mind!”
  • Okay, he blushed a little
    • “Apologies if I gave the impression that I was displeased…I am actually quite fond of cats,” he replied happily.
  • He couldn’t help but stand there and talk about Elizabeth the 3rd
  • And he actually smiled when you asked to see a picture of her
    • “She is so adorable!”
  • He found himself coming back to see you, which was strange
  • The coffee was good, V was right
  • But it was mostly to see you ?
  • You never asked about what he did for a living
  • You never made assumptions
  • You just talked to him like a normal person
  • You cared about animals
  • He would sit and sip his coffee while watching you interact with the customers
  • You had a nice smile and were always so cheerful
  • He tried to not act annoyed when customers didn’t leave a tip
  • You knew his drinks by heart and made them just the way he liked
    • “Good morning, Jumin! The usual?”
  • One day he brought Elizabeth to see you
  • You made a cute giggle when he brought her to the counter
    • “Jumin…you can’t bring a cat in here,” you smiled warmly
    • “Oh? I’m so sorry, I didn’t realize,” he said
    • “It’s okay. Let’s step outside so I can meet her properly?”
  • She took to you right away and even let you hold her
  • She purred as you pet her head
    • “She can tell you have a kind heart,” he smiled
  • After that, he was completely taken with you
  • One day he came in but you weren’t there for your shift
  • He asked the manager
    • “She is very ill, I told her to stay home and get some rest…” he told Jumin with a worried look
  • He wouldn’t take coffee from anyone else
  • It wouldn’t taste right
  • As quickly as he could he put together a gift basket filled with essential oils and immune system boosting teas and food and fruits etc like just anything and everything he could think of plus bath products
  • Brought it back to the café
    • “Could you see that MC receives this?” Jumin handed it to the manager
  • He’d like to send it to you himself, but it wouldn’t be proper to have your address
  • The manager nodded
  • It seemed like he had waited forever for your return
  • Every day he entered and you weren’t there was another slight weight added to his heart
  • He found himself worrying about you
  • What was this?
  • You had been the happiest part of his days since he started conversing with you in the morning
  • It was only when you were not there that he realized just how much he enjoyed your company
  • How much he looked forward to seeing you
  • It had to mean something
  • His heart jumped when he walked through the door and finally saw you again
  • A smile growing on his face
  • It was like breathing fresh air to see your smile once more
    • “Jumin! How is Elizabeth 3rd?” you waved, “and thank you so much for the gift…it was too much, you really didn’t have to…”
    • “I would have sent more, if I knew it had helped,” he replied
  • You smiled briefly but ended up coughing a bit
    • “Are you alright? Should you be pushing yourself to work like this?” he said with concern
    • “I’m so sorry. I’m fine, I promise!”
  • He was slightly nervous all of a sudden, a new feeling
  • Watching you make his drink, he decided to finally make a move
    • “I missed your presence here in the café.”
    • “Oh?” you looked away a little shy, “but we have so many other talented people to make drinks!”
  • Jumin laughed
    • “Yes. Although, I would be lying if I said I didn’t prefer the ones you made.”
  • Okay now your knees are a little weak
  • You let out a nervous laugh
    • “If I may continue,” he said, “I realized that while the coffee was more than satisfactory, what I was missing was you. I’d like to take you to dinner?”
  • You dropped a cup in shock
  • Stuttering and smiling
  • He thought you were adorable when you were flustered
    • “I…w-would love that, Jumin.”
  • You nodded and bit your lip
  • He felt elated hearing this
    • “Perfect! Tonight, then? It’s a date,” he gave that endearing sideways smile of his.

Quick reminder (not really quick I’m just ranting)

Idols do not owe you an explanation or apology when

-they gain weight

-they get into relationships

-they don’t want their pictures taken

-y’all say that they don’t belong in the group (like why tf are they apologising for being a position they deserve?)

-when another member isn’t in THEIR vlive

Idols do not need to apologise for being human.

Some of you need to understand they are going to gain weight but guess what? They are going to be healthy.

Some of you need to respect members and give them the respect they deserve!By that I mean not telling them they aren’t good enough to be in the group, asking for your bias on vlive or even telling them that they are fat.

Just imagine you’re an idol and you are on vlive, and you are getting told your fat and unworthy of being in your group and then been told to get another member to join. If I was in that position I would feel so fucking low about myself and question if it is true.

Relationships- THEY ARE GOING TO GROW UP AND HAVE KIDS AND GET MARRIED AND THE CHANCE THAT IT IS GOING TO BE YOU IS HIGHLY UNLIKLEY! Respect their decision to be in a relationship, they don’t owe you an explanation.

Privacy- ive already made a post on this. To sum it up. Respect them when they have time off, don’t track them down, they don’t owe you no picture.

I AM OVER FANS EXPECTING IDOLS TO TELL US EVERYTHING AND EXPECTING IDOLS TO LIVE TO PLEASE THEM

I’m upset right now. I posted this as a comment to the video, but I’m posting it here too. I seriously hope I’m not talking over anyone in the response that I did make. Please let me know. I really am so disappointed with @markiplier, because for preaching respect, he overlooked that there are people who have been disrespected beyond Felix.


How about you talk to Felix about respect, Mark. Because respect isn’t a one-way street, and he hasn’t done anything to earn that respect from me. Of course everyone deserves the same rights and freedoms, but respect is not a right. Respect is earned. And if Felix wants respect, he needs to be respectful to the people he’s asking to receive respect from - and he’s done the exact opposite.

“Even if you just boil it down to common human decency … The golden rule still applies. You still need to treat people the way that you want to be treated." 

Really? Common human decency? Stuff like, maybe, not joking about the genocide of a group of people who have, many times through history, been the targets of hate, and of course, also a genocide.

Joking about something that has happened to real people who are still alive on this planet. People who were affected, by going through it themselves, or losing family members… That definitely feels like treating other people the way you want to be treated.


"Felix is not an antisemite, and Felix does not advocate hate." 

Felix may not be intending to come off as antisemetic. He very well may not wish death onto all Jews, I understand that. However, antisemitism is still a very real problem in the world, and is on a very violent rise.

Having a platform as big as Felix’s, and then joking about antisemitism does so much harm. It normalizes it. Whether that was the intent or not, that’s exactly what happened. As Felix himself said, "neo-Nazi groups have been referencing [him], have been praising [him], for making these kinds of jokes.” That’s an enormous problem. And yes, he did make a statement to clear up that he does not support these groups, but the problem that he said something that they outright agreed with, that they could use to say “look, someone hugely famous on the internet agrees with us” in the first place is still so wrong.


“And I’m not even defending the jokes that he made, because even he has apologized for some of the jokes that he did." 

Yes. He apologized in the most deflective way possible. He said it was about disagreeing with what he said. That’s not the entire picture. No, I don’t think Felix is actually a fascist, or a neo-Nazi, but he (whether or not it was inadvertent at this point really doesn’t matter) made jokes that fed into those ideals. That’s not okay. A half-assed apology that feels a lot like someone saying "I’m sorry you were offended”, which is a shit apology by the way because it doesn’t apologize for their actions at all, is not good enough.


So yeah, I agree, respect is important. But you can’t tell us to respect someone who has shown blatant disrespect for people himself. Even beyond this one incident, there’s a lot of stuff that’s been said by Felix over the years, for example, the use of slurs against a number of communities, that has outright disrespected those groups. You can’t hold us to this standard of having to show a person respect when he cannot respect us. 

I started by saying that respect is something earned, and that it’s not a one-way street. I think we may have different definitions of respect, because I agree that all people, regardless of how bad they are, are humans, are equals, deserve the same rights and freedoms as everyone else on the planet. But in my eyes, that’s not respect.

Respect, to me, is much deeper than that, and very abstract, but essentially, it involves thinking highly of that person and holding them in some esteem. And to do that, to respect someone like that, I need to have that returned in some capacity. I will not respect someone who has shown that he will not show any respect to others who have been harmed or in any way affected by his comments by so much as giving a genuine, not self-serving apology.

Yes, Felix deserves to be treated like a human being. Yes, there are people who are twisting things he did, such as the whole pointing off camera being turned into him doing a Nazi salute. But what he said was not okay. His apology was self-serving at best, and disingenuous at worst. And while you say you’re not defending the jokes that he made, you’re not condemning them either.

What Felix did was wrong. I get that you want to support a friend, but what was done was wrong. That can’t be overlooked. And by telling us to simply respect Felix right now overlooks that what he said affected people and takes away those peoples’ voices. That’s not a very respectful thing to do.

Boyfriend!Yoongi (SUGA)

-Playing videos games 24/7
-He gets competitive and pouts when you beat him
-He sulks whenever you win at something and makes you cuddle him
-MATCHING HAIR DYE COUPLE
-Both wear punk af outfits
-CHOKERS
-Cooking meals together
-Yoongi starts kissing you on the counter 
-”Yoongi, sOMTHINGS BURNING!”
-He suggests couple shirts and you suggest disowning him
-He’s grumpy until you start kissing down him neck 
-”Y/N, shit, if you don’t stop doing that I won’t be able to stop myself.”
-He likes kinky shit
-Biting, choking, handcuffs, Yoongi’s up for anything
-He’s not good at apologies
-He pouts until you forgive him
-JEALOUS YOONGI
-He gets jealous so easily and does that thing where he pushes him tongue inside his cheek
-He takes ugly pictures of you wile you’re sleeping and send them to your friends
-”Are you texTING JHOPE???”
-It’s 4am Yoongi, just stop 
-Yoonseok bromance
-Roasting each other 24/7
-Both are savages
-Rap battles
-His gummy smile makes you weak
-He whispers kinky shit in your ear in public to see your reaction

Boyfriend Series: Jimin Jhope Jungkook Taehyung Namjoon Jin

anonymous asked:

I feel like you took two pictures and just edited yourself out and layered then for hagakure

You got it!  Took a photo in, took a photo out, then took several photos of different angles of the uniform so I could cut-paste- color correct and super impose until I got the end result. No morph suite needed with simple, good old fashioned photo manips. 

We don’t teach a Cosplay Photoshop 101 panel for nothing! 

MY FAVORITE LAUNDRY LORD IS BACK

anonymous asked:

Is an Old English Bulldogge different than a regular bulldog? I only know of Bulldog and French Bulldog..

These are the questions I live for.

The difference is pretty significant, not just appearance wise, but health wise. Although they still are sensitive to heat, Olde English Bulldogges should have no breathing issues otherwise, and have a reduced chance of hip dysplasia. 

73% of English Bulldogs suffer from hip dysplasia! They also suffer from allergies, cherry eyes, breathing difficulties, infections in their face wrinkles… not to mention over 80% cannot be born naturally because of their conformation.

Above is an English Bulldog. ~50 pounds, ~14 inches tall.

Above is an Olde English Bulldogge. ~65 pounds, 19 inches tall, less brachycephalic.

Side by side ^

French Bulldogs also come with unhealthy afflictions. They are incapable of regulating their own body temperature, due to their conformation they also cannot give birth naturally, nor can they mate naturally. More often than not, Frenchies require artificial insemination & c-section. They can also suffer from cherry eyes, glaucoma, eye ulcers, spinal cord issues, patellar luxation…

Then you have American Bulldogs that come in more than one variety 😵 But even these guys come with the same health issues; hip dysplasia, cherry eye, elbow dysplasia, entropion, ectropion, allergies, and bone cancer. 

Above is a Standard American Bulldog - like Chance from Homeward Bound!

And above are some Bully type American Bulldogs. They can even be a mix of the two kinds!

Boxers are even a type of bulldog, considering they originated from the now extinct German Bulldog mixed with the English Bulldog. Boxers are still at risk for all of the aforementioned health issues, but have a higher risk for essentially a heart attack.

Above is a Boxer and a Standard American Bulldog.

So the Olde English Bulldogge is a good advocate for selective breeding. The breed began in 1970 consisting of ½ English Bulldog, and 1/6th American Bulldog, 1/6th American Pit Bull Terrier and 1/6th Bull Mastiff. These dogs do not need to be artificially inseminated, and breeders are making an effort to have their dogs x-rayed in an effort to prevent hip dysplasia becoming a breed trait. They are not a picture of perfect health, but they would be the recommended bulldog.

some YoungK headcanons

•  Brian is really a night owl who loves to talk to you endlessly on the phone and ask for help on his schoolwork
•  other times he’ll be calling to play you a cord to see if it fit his lyrics
•  and you’d be so amazed bc wow he juggles all that while still being a sane and perfect boyfriend ?????
•  study dates with lots of chicken wings and pizza and soda are his favorite
•  bc yall never do any studying anyway lmao you thought!!!
•  he’d just be working up the courage to hold your hand again and be able to kiss you after wiping that cheese off your face
•  and that itself takes up like 2 hours so (he’s still shy even after being together for so long omg)
•  if your hair is curly he’d love that tbh
•  he’d be twirling it and playing with it in his hands and sometimes he’d get carried away and make you fall asleep bc he’s so gentle
•  like he’ll never tug on it and if he does, the fool will kiss your hair and apologize lmfao what
•  sometimes if he has nightmares about you, he can’t stop himself from wanting to hear your voice and calling you
•  tries to play it cool like “Yeah we just had a late practice and I decided to call you so pls keep talking to me are you ok, is everything good???”
•  but you can hear his voice breaking and his breathing is short and heavy
•  this is esp bad when he’s away for long periods of time poor Kang
•  collects pictures of you on his phone when you’re distracted/when he caught you off guard looking cute af
•  he has a habit of pointing out the things he loves about you
•  he doesn’t ever mean to make you blush when he does it, it’s just so heartfelt and he’s being so sincere
•  I don’t ever see him being jealous tbh he’s a pretty chill guy when it comes to you
•  he won’t even have any trust issues or feel insecure at all
•  he knows he’s the only one for you and vice versa •  that shocked and surprised face when he sees you wearing his clothes, or even his infamous guitar strap
•  he’s like is this a thing now?? You gonna make me almost faint every time I see you like, rude????
•  his smile is so bright when he pulls you in a tight hug
•  he relaxes into it when you softly caress his back and smile against his neck
•  pulls away after a quick kiss to look at you pouting bc you wanna keep kissing him but he’s a tease
•  nah but fr makeouts are heavenly
•  you feeling like his lap is your throne and everything while he tugs on your lips with his teeth oooo boi
•  him sending you so many hearts and cute emojis when you’re texting
•  and blushes when you do the same and he won’t be able to sleep bc you’re so cute
•  bruh he’s so smitten 💛

Originally posted by its-youngk

How to make this graphic:

Tutorial originally posted on Looksgreat, my tutorial blog - in portuguese. Like or reblog if you liked. Don’t repost. If you feel like translating it to another language, please let me know before you post. Click “keep reading” to follow this tutorial ♥

* English is not my first language, so I apologize for any mistakes I made. I hope I made a good job explaning everything. If by the end of this tutorial you have any questions, please leave it on my askbox!

Keep reading

I think one of the biggest issues with SU is how they show repairing relationships.

The only one I feel was handled right was Peridot with Steven/Pearl/Garnet/Amethyst. It took time for Peridot to acknowledge her mistakes, reflect on why they were wrong, apologize for them, and actively try to better herself. It also took time for the Crystal Gems to accept her apology, trust her, and eventually form a fairly stable friendship with her.

Meanwhile on the rushed/awkward/unresolved side you’ve got:
-Greg and Amethyst (Amethyst I love you but cleaning a garage and getting a picture frame does not make up for traumatizing Greg)
-Pearl and Steven (Please don’t endanger the child)
-Pearl and Connie (PLEASE DON’T ENDANGER THE CHILD)
-Lapis and the Crystal Gems (Why have they not,,, had any interaction after Malachite unfused except for that part where she says “flirting” in Hit the Diamond)
-Pearl and Garnet (The Sardonyx arc started out really good and thorough but ruined it by rushing to try and fit the whole arc into one week’s worth of episodes. Also it was framed like the problem was Garnet/Ruby not forgiving Pearl and not Pearl taking advantage of Garnet in the first place.)
-Lapis and Peridot (WHEN DID THIS HAPPEN. WHEN DID THEY BECOME BFFS. WHY DIDN’T WE GET TO SEE IT HAPPEN. WHY ARE THEY SUDDENLY BARN WIVES.)

But yeah, I love Steven Universe to death, but little things like this really make the show suffer.

Do things you’re not good at. Write poetry. Write bad poetry. Sing in the shower, and everywhere else too. Dance. Finger-paint, and don’t apologize for it. Bake lopsided cakes, and take a stupid amount of pictures with them.
Be. Let your soul breathe. It will thank you.
—  We are Creatives
‘Falling’ in Love

Originally posted by ethan-support-group

Request: Hi hi. I’ve read your “x reader” stories and I love them 💖  I was wondering if you would do an Ethan x reader imagine where y/n is a fan of Ethan and meets him at a convention and its like a love at first sight kind of thing?

Summary: Fem!Reader is at a con for the first time and quite literally falls  in love :D ……..ok I’ll see myself out

You can find part two here

A/N: Hey y’all this is a cute fic full of nervous!Ethan so if that’s the kinda thing you’re into then you’re in luck. For real though, once I started writing this I couldnt stop, I don’t know why but I was bit by the inspiration bug and cranked this bad boi out. Also, anything in italics is a personal thought in first person that either the reader or Ethan is having. Enjoy!

Wordcount: 853, goldilocks zone :D

Warning: I cursed a couple times? Maybe just once? Can’t remember. Also nervous!Ethan is adorable? Read at your own risk he too cute.

Requests are open! Send some in pls I have one left in my inbox so pls!
r e q u e s t s o m e t h i n g

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BTS Reaction To You Pouting

Anon asked: Hi is it okay if you could do bts reaction to their girlfriend glaring at them but she looks like a sad puppy because they made her mad. Sorry to bother you have a nice day/night.

here ya go anon, I hope this is what you wanted! -Spice

Rap Monster:

Namjoon would just sigh, not being able to argue with his girlfriend when she made that face. “Ah, you know just how to shut me up…” He would mutter as he hugged you in apology for making you mad.

Originally posted by yourpinkpill

Jin:

He would give in to whatever your demands were immediately when you pouted. Seokjin couldn’t resist anything that was cute, and you weren’t the exception. He might even purposely try and irritate you just so he could see the adorable face you made.

Originally posted by bangtan

Suga:

Let’s face it, he would be absolutely weak against you, and that feeling only amplified when you pouted. Yoongi would try to act tough and pretend he didn’t notice you, but his facade would crumble pretty quickly. He would complain that it wasn’t fair that you got to use your cuteness as a weapon against him, but deep down he wouldn’t mind all that much.

Originally posted by gotjimin

J-Hope:

He tried to remain serious with you, he really did, but Hoseok couldn’t hold in his laughter for very long. You were just too damn cute for your own good, and he couldn’t keep a straight face against you. After he was done laughing he would promptly apologize and make up for whatever it was that made you mad.

Originally posted by nycbtslover

Taehyung:

Taehyung wouldn’t even try to hold in his laughter as you pouted. He’d shake his head, saying, “I can’t believe how cute you are Jagiya, I’m speechless…” Even if you were still mad at him, you wouldn’t be able to run away from all of the affection he’d give you afterward.

Originally posted by beatriceindre

Jimin:

Seeing you be so unintentionally cute would make his heart flutter. Jimin would probably blush a little but tease you on your super cute angry face. “I thought I was suppose to be the cute one in the relationship…you can’t go stealing my role!” He would laugh as he pulled you closer to shower you in affection.

Originally posted by wellhell0therenicetomeetyou

Jungkook:

Like Taehyung, he wouldn’t bother hiding his amusement at your cute pouty face. Jungkook would have to resist the urge to take a picture as he tried to stay focused on the argument, but he wouldn’t do a very good job of doing so. He would apologize later, but for now he just wanted to admire how adorable his girlfriend was.

Originally posted by tiredkook

Foodie Friday: Strawberry Jam!

Ingredients:
-2 lbs fresh strawberries, washed and hulled
-4 cups sugar
-¼ cup lemon juice

1. In a large bowl, mash your strawberries until you get a chunky, fruity bowl of crushed strawberries. You can choose to blend them down for a smoother jam if you wish, or you can do as I did and leave nice big chunks and pieces of strawberry in to add a bit more texture!

2. In a large, heavy bottomed pot, transfer your strawberries and lemon juice. Over low heat, and constantly stirring, gradually add your sugar, dissolving it completely before you add more. Once all of the sugar has been added and dissolved, it’s time to move on to boiling the sauce. (This is the point at which the picture was taken… I apologize for a lack of finished product picture… I kept trying to remember to get pictures of the jam spread on toast, but…. it’s just so good!)

3. Bring your strawberry sauce up to a rolling boil over high heat, stirring to avoid burning. Check the temperature of the sauce with a candy thermometer periodically, and remove the sauce from the heat when it reaches 220 degrees Fahrenheit. 

4. Transfer your jam into a sterilized jar. If you are experienced with canning jams and preserves, and wish to proceed to a water bath, this would be the time. Alternatively, if you’re like me and know that that jam isn’t going to last more than a week or two at the most, transfer the jam to an airtight container and refrigerate immediately.

Note: Some recipes call for a less sugar and lemon juice, while others call for more depending on how long the preserves are meant to last. This recipe can last for several weeks, and up to a year in a sterile container when not opened.

Magical Ingredient!

This is an exciting time of year for California’s Central Coast. In part, it’s because it’s graduation season. It’s also the start of summer, which means that our region becomes rife with summer wine tastings, concerts in local parks, massive Farmers’ Markets, and our signature tri-tip BBQ cookouts.

As much as I love all of these big events, this time of the year also tends to be a point where our local farmers get a lot of attention. Our area tends to produce a large amount of spinach, brussels sprouts, broccoli, and our coastal cities are respected for their strawberry production. So much so that one town in the area holds an annual strawberry festival at the start of every summer!

So it’s only fitting that I honor this wonderful time of the year with a bit of homemade strawberry jam, using the local strawberries!

Strawberries as we tend to know them today are fairly recent in terms of cultivation, having been bred in the 18th century in Brittany, France. However, wild varieties of strawberries were popular and frequently cultivated throughout Europe. The garden strawberry - the kind we tend to pick up at the supermarket - was the result of crossbreeding the strawberry with American strawberry species in order to produce larger fruits.

Both wild and domesticated strawberry plants are fairly prolific, capable of being planted by seed, transplanted from the wild, and cultivated from cuttings (these plants can also reproduce asexually by growing “runners” - extensions of the plant that grow outward and take root nearby, effectively creating a natural clone of the parent plant). Their sweet fruits and medicinal properties made them rather desired, and even before the garden strawberry had been bred, strawberry cultivation was in high demand.

The whole plant was used to help treat depressive illnesses - the roots and leaves were able to be made into a weak tea to help lift the spirit and reduce the effects of aging. In Rome, strawberries were served to both freshen breath and to help lift the spirits of soldiers.

Strawberries are related to roses, and certain associations between the two can frequently be seen both in witchcraft and in folklore. Namely, the link with love and lust. Like roses, the bright red coloration of strawberries associates it with love and passion, while the fragrance and flavor are sweet and are common aphrodisiacs. It was said that if one were to share the fruit with another person, it would engender love between the two.

The leaves had another use in witchcraft - that of good fortune and fertility. As I’d mentioned earlier, strawberries are very prolific plants, and this was not lost on our ancestors. As such, the leaves would often be carried by women who were trying to get pregnant or who were already pregnant and wanted to promote health during the pregnancy while also relieving some pain and protecting themselves from postpartem depression.

As strawberries were also frequently traded - both in Europe and pre-European America - they’ve also developed a link with fortune and prosperity. Therefore, the leaves can be incorporated into sachets to bring luck, health, or love into one’s life.

A simple love spell involves eating a strawberry slowly, savoring the flavor and focusing on the person you love as you do so. Kissing said lover right afterward helps promote love, passion, and fortune in a healthy relationship.

As can be imagined, strawberries are extremely versatile ingredients for the kitchen witch. The methods of preparing the fruit are nearly endless, ranging from drying, preserving as jams and jellies, creating sweet sauces, incorporating into cakes and breads, sugaring them as decorative toppings, and even serving them as is. In addition, they’re excellent accompaniments to other ingredients in sweetening, luck, love, and health spells - imagine the impact of an anniversary love spell involving strawberries, chocolate, and red wine!

So whether you’re mashing them up for strawberry jam following an exciting festival, or creating a filling for a strawberry shortcake, or even snacking on them fresh from the vine, consider the many uses and benefits of strawberries! Perhaps they have a place in your magic, too!

May all your meals be blessed! )O(