It has rained on and off here, as it does during this time of year. With the rain comes very sticky mud on the grounds of our home, Dragon Dell Cottage. We have often lifted a foot only to realize that our boot was still in the mud!
The puddles and mud were on my mind as I thought about some of the fairy bogs across The Veil, in the land of the Fey. They are not all dark and gloomy. Some of them have vibrantly coloured slime and the Pond Pixes, a special type of Water Fey that make this slime, enjoy playing with it. They marvel at the stickiness, make batches just to improve elasticity and, in a pinch, have made some for spiders out of thread for their webs.
At the cottage, I have been struggling with some sibling discord amongst my children. I know that this is very normal, yet I remain a little perplexed regardless having been a fairy most of my life!
We have been working on Loyalty, as opportunity often sways my eldest, and she ends up regretting her decisions afterwards. When we know we have not been Loyal, it can pain the heart, yet loyalty is a subject of depth as there are such a things as blind loyalty and betraying yourself for others. With my middle child, we have been discussing Generosity. The Fey do not like stinginess and I am trying to show her how sharing and giving can be a joy. Lastly, I am on working on myself! Trying to diffuse situations acting as cranky as a badger just adds fuel to the fire. I am learning to replace being cross with Laughter. My youngest is my greatest teacher in this art!
I decided to use Pixie Pond Slime to make these ideas “stick” rather than a stern lecture to discuss Loyalty, Generosity and Laughter.
To make your own Pixie Pond Slime, you will need:
One 5 oz bottle of clear Elmer’s Clear Glue
1 1/2 tablespoon of contact lens solution
1 teaspoon of baking soda
A mixing bowl
To make the slime, empty the entire bottle of glue into your mixing bowl. Mix in some glitter! It is the best part! We don’t measure, but I would venture to say a couple of teaspoons at least! We put quite a lot to make the slime very sparkly. Next, add your contact lens solution and baking soda.
It will be very, very gloopy at first. If you knead it, it becomes less stringy and as you work with it in the open air, it dries a little and becomes more glob-like.
I prepared 3 batches in 3 different colours and scooped every last sticky string in mason jars with lids. If left out, the slime will dry. I labelled them, one for each of us: Loyalty was blue, Generosity was purple and Laughter was pink.
I picked up my eldest daughter from school and she was delighted by the sparkly jars I had prepared with her sister and brother.
The children and I talked as we played and they even shared without any prompting. They took out ice cube trays and made fairy cakes for the Pond Pixies. They twirled, rolled, stretched and squished the Pond Pixie Slime for over an hour!
I recommend using plastic mats to play on. The slime is easiest to pick up using more slime, as it sticks together. It can be peeled off of mixing bowls and spatulas too, if you clean it up before it dries. If it does happened to dry, the glue is washable and a good soak will do the trick. I hope you have enjoyed this post and would love to know what names you gave your slime! What did you learn?
I have to confess a little something: as a new, human mother, I had no idea how one celebrates human birthdays! I researched the topic online and may have gone a little overboard with my first daughter. Having once been Fey, I had our understanding of birthdays, which are to reflect on the years past and set our sights on goals for the years ahead. Our kin and friends do celebrate with us, but not with balloons, gifts and cake. Instead, we will often invite the birthday fairy to a walk to collect acorns and stop and chat with the forest. We might suggest collecting herbs and preparing them together, making teas, baking – things that are done in the enjoyment of one another’s company. I will note that the human tradition of adding a cake to the celebration is brilliant!
Now that I have had my third child, my son, I find that our fairy and human traditions are blending into one another. We made him some Unicorn Dip instead of a cake and held a very small celebration, decorating the table with books that included fairy tales, wooden knights, lords and ladies. We did so in anticipation of a magical, weekend-long celebration.
We tidied the cottage, found care for our pets and drove to Edmonton. The trail of magic got stronger as the event drew closer, we arrived on the Friday for the Harry Potter Pop-Up shop in the Highlands area being held on Saturday, September 16, year 2017 on this side of The Veil.
The leaves on the beautiful residential streets were showing off their newly golden tips by rustling in the sunlight. Rounding the corner, leaving our car behind, we left behind the Muggle world.
It felt as if we had wandered into Diagon Alley as we saw the Honeydukes sign, witches and wizards in their house colours everywhere, WANTED posters and pages of The Daily Prophet up on the buildings. There was also a wand maker with an exquisite outdoor boutique that my children saw and were immediately draw to.
Connorvanders & Co had wooden cases open in their tent, which must have been enchanted because no ordinary person would have been able to fit the displays inside a tent that size. Very clever spell work! The wands were on display: some straight and at attention, others with secrets tucked into their kinks and curls, some slender and cunning, others robust and cheerful. Personalities radiated from the cases – these were no ordinary hunks of wood, I felt that in my bones. While fairies rarely use wands, we are often acquainted with a number of witches and wizards. Wands – real wands – have energies about them. Let me attempt to explain a little what I mean.
Have you ever chosen a pet? Often, there is a connection that makes you select one over another equally cute pet. We gravitate towards certain wands and if you can imagine it, the connection to the wand is as deep a connection as with a special pet. These were wands of the highest quality and there was no question that they would, in fact, chose their witch or wizard.
A Ravenclaw wizard helped each of my girls hear the call of the wand wanting to be theirs. My eldest daughter refused to even touch the first wand offered to her, while my second daughter’s hand shot out and would not drop the first wand shown to her. My wand surprised me greatly. After all this time and my past experience as Fey using magic, it was lovely to be surprised like that! There was even a wand perfect for my 1 year old son.
Connorvander himself then demonstrated a defensive spell to my children. He explained that in order cast a successful Patronus charm, the caster must first think of memories that make them happy. Then, they must put their wand to their forehead to draw on those memories and, in a fluid motion, while saying “expecto Patronum”, lower the wand to the heart and then out to cast. The memories and love from the heart project the Patronus. We discovered that my eldest daughter has a tigger as a Patronus, my youngest daughter a cat and mine was revealed to my children: a ferret.
After the charm lesson, we also purchased some Patronus Bundles, as one can never be too prepared in case of a run-in with Dementors! These also came with bundles of sage to help cleanse spaces of negative energy – something Dementors are drawn to. Upon opening these bundles, we also discovered that the art on the bundles was created by a local artist!
The children adopted adorable Pygmy Puffs (very low maintenance, highly recommended by fellow mother witches) and a couple of bottled spells. The witch helping them complete the adoption papers and select their spells made their experience one to remember, answering the questions as they bubbled over, like a cauldron full to the brim. The experience at Connorvanders & Co was remarkable and I was astounded to have found such a knowledgable wand maker, wand fitter and Pygmy Puff breeder.
The incredible smell from Honeydukes, which is usually known by Muggles as Be-A-Bella, drew us into the line. While we waited, the Edmonton Aurors Quidditch Club had brooms and hoops set up for the littles to test their aptitude for the sport. I am a terrible player since I am slow on a broom, but we discovered we have a Quidditch witch in the family with my youngest daughter!
Inside the shop, the children filled a bag with Chocolate Frogs, other magical sweets and even some of Dumbledore’s favourite Sherbet Lemon Drops. We had Giggle Potions made out of Buttescotch Beer and we bought a case of it with our galleons.
With our purses significantly lighter but with brand new wands in our grasp, we took a little break before heading back. Returning to the car confirmed that the street was cloaked in some strong magic because the minute we got near the car, we were back in the Muggle world.
We rested, changed our clothing to dress robes and headed back. Sure enough, at about the same distance from our car, there was a slight shimmer and we were back in the wizarding world. To Muggles, La Boheme is a restaurant. In actuality, it is a very clever disguise for a way to Great Hall of Hogwarts. We had to pass through Platform 9 3/4, use our Hogwarts Express ticket to arrive at the Great Hall. It was lit by candles floating near the ceiling and we were seated as guests at the Slytherin table.
We feasted from the inspired menu and enjoyed being sorted by Sorting Hat cupcakes. We had made educated guesses as to our houses prior, the cupcakes confirmed our suspicions! They were filled with coloured icing in the centre that sorted you into one of the four houses: Ravenclaw, Gryffindor, Slytherin and Hufflepuff. We have 1 Ravenclaw (myself), 1 Hufflepuff (my youngest daughter), 1 Gryffindor (my eldest daughter), and 2 Slytherins (my husband and son).
We also enjoyed Pumpkin Pasties and celebrated my son’s birthday with some of the birthday cake Hagrid had baked for Harry.
We did not manage to get in to Majesty and Friends, but harbour no hard feelings! We traded stories with other magical families while we waited and although the line-up was past the endurance of my girls (who are not very patient – possibly a fairy trait passed on), we made friends! We will absolutely go back another time to pick some of the homemade bath salts and candles there and hopefully try some of the famous chocolate made by The Violet Chocolate Company.
That night, the children were tucked in bed with bottles of Butterscotch Beer and their Pygmy Puffs, eager to practice more charm work in the morning. This was part 1 of our birthday celebration! I would like to thank all of the businesses that revealed their true, enchanted nature, to the lucky ones who dared to venture into their world. We know it was no dream, we know that the magic was real because we have our wands, potions, Chocolate Frogs and Pygmy Puffs as reminders of the wonder.
May you find wonder in the everyday, maybe even wander into a magical world just around the curb.
What has it been like for you, with littles going back to school recently? I find myself looking for my eldest all the time, only to remember that I packed her lunch and dropped her off at school. She doesn’t look back once she runs on to the playground, while I am constantly looking at her picture during the day.
At home, I still have two littles. My middle child, my daughter Minka, and my son, Sparrow. Minka is three and full of magic, jumping beans. I try to keep her out of mischief by making different crafts with her. This week, we made some Fairy Cloud Dough. The recipe calls for very easy to source ingredients, the dough stores exceptionally well and it is a great sensory play activity.
To make Fairy Cloud Dough, you will need:
One cup of hair conditioner
2 1/2 cups of cornstarch
A mixing tool such as a spoon or spatula
The conditioner we used (Equate with rose and passion fruit extract) had a pretty, pastel pink colour already. It smells nice as well, and it is under $2.50 at Walmart.
This is optional but so much fun: Minka wore fairy wings while we made our dough. She also chose to wear her rainbow twirl dress since rainbows are gifts from the Air Fey we were talking about.
To make the dough, firstly you measure the hair conditioner and add it to a bowl. Next, you add the 2 1/2 cups of cornstarch. Minka did all the mixing and I helped her with the measuring.
Our dough was already a lovely pink shade, but we added a few drops of neon pink and blue food colouring.
This made for swirly dough that turned a shade of lilac after being handled.
Lastly, we added sparkles. Just as I started to say “gently now, not the whole bottle”, Minka emptied an entire container of glitter into the dough. I am actually thrilled she did because we had such sparkly Fairy Cloud Dough! It was the prettiest we had ever made! You can be as sparing or daring as you like with this addition, you can stick to one colour or a few – rainbow dough is great!
I usually give the children things to put into the dough and figurines to have fun with. On this occasion, I gave Minka some coloured feathers and some Playmobil creatures and people. It is difficult to clean off toys afterwards, but if you soak them in water for 10-15 minutes, the Fairy Cloud Dough is easy to rinse.
I try to teach the children about The Fey everyday and this was a lesson in playfulness. I would be a terrible Guardian if I didn’t pass on the Fairy Lore to my children! The Air Fey teach us to be lighthearted and if we are weighed down by too many negative thoughts or worries, we can look to them to help us and inspire us to let go of unnesecary baggage. The day we made this dough, Minka was sad that her sister wasn’t home every day any more. Making the Fairy Cloud Dough helped alter her mood and set the tone for a great day.
She was covered in cornstarch and glitter, but we had a wonderful morning and she proudly showed her older sister what she had made later that day.
To store the Fairy Cloud Dough, put it in sealed container. We like to leave a little piece, shaped like a nest, out on the window sill overnight to thank the Air Fey for carrying our burdens away.
I hope that you will enjoy making some Fairy Cloud Dough of your own, and as always, I would love to hear about it!
Due to recent Disney films regarding fairies, there seems to be great concern that hawks eat fairies.
I am a fan of the Disney fairy films and I believe the lessons they impart demonstrate many of the valued virtues of The Gentry.
With that said, please do not hold any ill-will towards hawks. They do not eat fairies. Reactions to the notion that hawks fancy fairy feasts among the Fey that visit Dragon Dell have ranged between laughter and outright insult. I’ll explain.
While the Fair Folk are not immortal, they do live an exceptionally long lifespan and have many powers. There are different types of these beings and their abilities vary from type to type, yet they all possess strong magical abilities. For example, do you think an air fairy that can help the snows move across the globe would be afraid of a hawk? Not likely. I can guarantee you that birds of prey know very well that fairies are not appetizers.
This does however bring about the question whether or not other beings are a threat to the Good Neighbours. Yes. Sadly, we created them.
Beyond the Veil there exists a dark creature that can never be full. These creatures hunt the Fey because they are in constant agony, their hunger twisting their bellies. They may be cruel and bloodthirsty, but they do deserve our pity for their pain can never be alleviated. They were never given an official name by their creator, but among many of the Fey, they are called the Iron Hounds.
Their origin goes back many hundreds of years ago. There had been a wealthy man who had a fairy wife. He was unkind to her and when she became ill and lost the slightest bit of her youthful fairy beauty, he turned her out of his house and sought a new bride. The wealth had been a wedding gift and the moment the heartless man took a new wife, the fairy gold disappeared. Vengeance filled the man’s heart even though he had brought his plight upon himself. He spent years cultivating knowledge on fairy lore and magic until he fancied himself a wizard. There was some truth to his claim and success in his dark sorcery. He poisoned every tree, one by one, in a small glade by nailing their roots with iron nails. Iron is one of the few metals that may harm the Gentry (and other magical creatures). The nails drove the woodland spirits out and in their place, the twisted wizard grew the essence of the Iron Hounds out of the sick and dying trees. The rotting, knotted and twisted trunks of these trees formed the bodies of the hounds. The sole purpose of these poor, sick and hungry beasts is to hunt and feast off the Fey. With every bite, their hunger deepens so that they can never ignore it, nor can they ever sate it.
Iron Hounds are much larger than worldly hounds, running on legs of twisted tree roots. Their eyes are empty except for dark pools. They are imbued with some very ugly magic and have the speed to hunt the nimble Fey. Their bodies often remain beyond the Veil while their essence takes on a ghostly hound form in our world. The body and essence must be one for the beings to be destroyed completely, putting the poor creatures out of the misery that they are cursed with.
Luckily, there are things that ward off the Iron Hounds. They are not rare nor enchanted objects, some of them can even be found at the grocery store!
Onions may look humble and we are used to chopping them up for soups, salads or fried in batter for a treat. However, the onion has a long history as a protective plant, dating back to ancient Egypt.
There are a few ways to use the onion. To guard against anything wicked entering your home, an onion with pins in it on the windowsill will do the trick. Alternately, you can place a cut onion in a room as a ward against malevolent beings. If you have onions in your garden, they will protect your house and property.
There are also certain flowers that the Iron Hounds will avoid at all costs. Flowers are healthy, happy flora and these creatures were breed out of sickness. They cannot stand certain flowers with protective properties. Lilac is such a plant. Dragon Dell is always bursting with lilac blooms when the weather is warm! If you have some lilac bushes around your home, Iron Hounds will not dare attempt to enter.
Another major deterrent for the hounds is lavender. Dragon Dell does not have access to wild lavender year-long, instead we have begun trying to grow some indoors. We also found Magic Monster Spray made by The Green Goddess. Would you care to guess what one of the ingredients might be? The lavender floral water in the Magic Monster Spray is indeed magic! This spray is safe to use on pillows, stuffed animals that you might tuck into your bed with you, sheets and it also helps encourage our dreams to be soft and peaceful. We use it often since our discovery and since we are rather slow to grow our lavender (the cats of Dragon Dell take great delight in upsetting plants).
There is no way to undo the great evil that created the Iron Hounds. As much as I prefer to keep them away from Dragon Dell, since it would be like a fairy buffet for them, I do pity the poor things. In my search for ways to guard the Gentry from them, I have not come across a way to heal them nor to feed them so that they may rest. I hope to one day.
You can keep your fairies safe by placing an onion on your window sill, in your room overnight, lilac bushes, dried lavender or Magic Monster Spray! Use whatever you may have at hand and rest assured, you can protect your friends. The power to do so is in your hands and maybe even your kitchen.
If you are looking for a little magic today, why not brew your own fairy potion? While magic may be a little rarer these days than it used to be, the ingredients you will need for this brew are most likely already in your home or very easy to find. This is one way to find magic in the everyday, even in your kitchen cupboards!
You will need to have:
A jar, cup or mug
A pot or bowl
A magic wand, enchanted cauldron stick, spoon, spatula – something to stir with
At Dragon Dell, we like to set everything up so that the ingredients are ready for action!
All set up for magic!
The first step is to fill your jar, cup or mug half-way with white vinegar. This next step will save you a great deal of cleaning up: put your jar, cup or mug in a bigger pot or bowl. Now, the magic starts!
From a plain kitchen staple, the vinegar is about to become so much more! You add the food dye, whatever colour calls to you. You can make pink if you are feeling glum and need a little bubbliness, red is wonderful if you are feeling inspired, blue will calm an anxious heart, green is great if you want to grow new friendships, purple is help you be true to yourself, orange is to chase away doubt for example.
My favourite part comes right after you are happy with the colour of your potion. With this step, you enchant the ingredients: you add sparkles and make a wish with every colour you add.
Are you ready to see the potion brew? All you need to do is spoon baking soda in and stir! Don’t forget to activate your wishes here by saying “bubble, bubble, little wishes twinkle and double!”
It is so fun to watch the potion bubble over, releasing your wishes. You can then always add more sparkles and baking soda to keep the potion bubbling a little longer.
My daughters, Garnet and Minka, look forward to rainy days because that is when we practice potion making the most!
Did you have fun making a fairy potion? Would you like to share with me what colour you made and why?
Have a wonderful day and may your wishes come true!
I receive many questions on Lady Starling’s Fairy Lore Facebook page and they surprise and delight me. You can always comment here on the blog as well or Contact Lady Star through email. Today, I will be sharing some questions and answers received throughout the month. Here we go!
Do fairies have friends?
They most certainly do! While it may take years to bond, fairies do have friends that they dance with and feast with. Many of their friends aren’t other fairies, but creatures of the land, sea and air and other magical beings. They also do form bonds with some special humans
What is it like in Fairy land? Where is it?
It’s just beyond a thin veil that is invisible to the naked human eye. It keeps their world and ours apart. There are times of the year, such as Halloween, when the veils thins considerably. At this time, you might hear or see the Fair Folk with much more ease!
What is it like there? It’s a wild and free land with seasons, as we have here. Time moves very differently there so one hour here could be years there, or 1 hour there a lifetime here! A beautiful thing about Faerie (their world) is that it is inhabited by so many magical creatures! Imagine breakfast with a dragon!
How can one know if fairies truly are in their home?
The answer doesn’t always thrill the asker! Ever lose something that was right in front of you and have it unexpectedly appear where you are sure there is no way you could have left it there? You don’t have to shake it off and wonder if your imagination is playing tricks on you…the Fair Folk are! They don’t really see a difference between your belongings and theirs, so they may “borrow” things only to return them later.
What does the Tooth fairy do with the teeth?
She collects them to build houses or insulate existing ones for smaller beings during the cold Sometimes, she will give them to animals that have lost teeth as well. She can also turn them into dust and use it in the earth to help plants sink their “teeth”, their roots, into the soil.
Can fairies fly in space? And, if so, what kind of fairies?
Fairies are traditionally known by your people as beings that are between man and angel. They are a very different nature from you or even I, as I am no longer one of them completely. While they can and do take on physical bodies, they are capable of traveling through spirit. In this manner, yes, they can fly through space. Even time is different for them, they do not adhere to the laws that govern our world. So will astronauts see fairies? Probably not in their form that resembles humans, but they may appear shooting stars as they travel through space.
Is Peter Pan real and as cool as they portray him in the movies?
Way cooler, if you can believe it! A little naughtier too. Pan does have a guardianship role, similar to mine as he carries Lost Boys over. He is wiser than he pretends or is portrayed but a trickster. He enjoys pranks in our world! Ever find green milk in the fridge? You could have been visited by him.
How do you know so much about fairies?
Once, when I was a few hundred years younger, I was a fairy. I’ll tell you what kind, as we can be grouped into 4 basic groups: fire, water, air and earth. I took care of wild herbs, and was part of the earth fairy grouping as such. I would glide quietly into your world at night and under the light of a moonbeam in my fairy lamp, I worked to grow herbs to help people near their homes. For example, angelica is a very powerful protective plant. If I saw people were in need of it to get rid of negative emotions or hurtful thoughts, I left it all around them. That’s how I got my first name.
One night, I fell in love with a human. While it’s not exactly favoured by fairy-kind, it’s not why I lost my wings.
I didn’t make it back to the Land of the Fae when I had a child. So my child, a little one named Garnet, would never be able to come into my land. Being born here, her human side took over.
So, I had a choice. To go back to my home as a fairy, or give up my wings to stay here with Garnet.
Now, I am a special kind of Guardian, helping the otherworldly beings that cross into our world back home, keeping humans who mean harm away from the openings between the two worlds and aiding magical creatures in distress. I still work with herbs to help lift sadness, protect, heal and I love my human life.
Can you do magic?
Yes, but mine now is mostly used as a guide for beings to cross over. The rest, sadly, is mostly plant lore! But a fairy, even a now-human one, can never lose all his or her magic or they will disappear.
Thank you for stopping in today and joining me! Please feel free to ask questions of your own!
Come close and let Lady Star share a fairy story with you:
Ever wake up at night and think “I’m not alone”? If you have, guess what? You are right; every night you are not alone. Now, there is no reason to be spooked by this news – since most monsters are more afraid of you than you are of them – and your most frequent visitor is a fairy. She is the Moon Fairy.
She has a name, a beautiful name! One that reminds you of dragonflies and the smell of the ocean at night, maybe with a hint of cinnamon and cricket song. I know this because I recall the feel of her name, but not her name itself. This is part of my sad condition, I’ve lost her name because she must have taken it back from me over the years as I become more and more human. You see, it is a secret name, hers to give and hers to take. She gives it out very selectively to special children and I have heard that it sounds different to each child. To you, for instance, her name might feel like the smell of the lilac bush outside your window, the earthy smell of a giant oak snoring in his sleep and possibly a handful of jellybeans. No matter what, it is always her name.
Her hair gathers and twists into a luminous spiral, much like a candle flickering as you walk by. Her eyes are shiny and deep on her lovely blue face. She flits in such a way as to be able to imitate both shadow and light, allowing her to blend into the corners of the night. She laughs a bit like little bird warbling. She wears a dress made of Evening Primrose and carries a wand made of a Moon Flower. She snacks on dragon fruit as she makes her nightly rounds.
Rounds? What rounds, you ask. Ah, I haven’t explained to you what the Moon Fairy does! There is a lot of commotion surrounding the Sandman and dreams, but seldom is the Moon Fairy credited with her role in dreams. Someone must first open your sight inside your sleep for you to be able to witness the magic of dreams. The Moon Fairy turns her key tucked into the petals of her wand just inside your earlobe, unlocking your mind for the dream sands. You can understand now why it is a very important job.
It is very frustrating for the Moon Fairy when children lock her out of their minds and earlobes! How do they do this? Well, let me ask you this: when was the last time you refused to go to sleep? Your answer is also the last time you locked her out!
She takes great pains to fold and wrinkle and crinkle herself ever so small so that she can travel through the tiniest crack into your bedroom. Sometimes, tucked up into a minuscule speck, she gets stuck, unable to cross over because the child or children in question are not asleep! This worries the poor fairy, who wants nothing more than to be sure all children get to dream through the night.
When children go straight to sleep, then the Moon Fairy can do her job well an quickly. To these children, she hands out her name as a gift. If you know it, hold on to it tightly and try never to give her a reason to take it back! If you whisper it at night when you are scared or lonely or sad, it has the power to cast a little light in the dark and chase nightmares away. Treasure it, for it is a reminder of all the good in the world and that dreams do come true.