Friday, June 9, 2017

Stones & Solstices

June's Issue of Emerald Post will be dedicated to the thousands of ancient stone monuments across the Celtic Isles, several of which are aligned with the summer solstice (coming up on June 21). Above is a sneak peek at a watercolor print that is included. A 4x6 Postcard Print of a stone circle, a timeline chart, and 5 more photos will be included! Hop over to Emerald Post Shop to get your June Issue today.

To learn more about these ancient monuments and my travels through the shadows of stones join Emerald Post Herald - an occasional e-mail newsletter full of tales and photos from travels, Emerald Post Updates and links to my favorite virtual places. Join HERE.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Incredible Stories, Expertly Told

Photo from

If you have an affinity for Ireland, for histories, for stories, or have any inclination to travel to the Emerald Isle, you must meet Abarta Heritage and Audio guides. Abarta Heritage offers many easily downloaded audio guides to listen to while traveling or while in the comfort of your own home sipping a hot cuppa tea. Best yet.....most are FREE. That's right. Whisk yourself away to other lands and other centuries with an expert audio guide (Abarta is run by archaeologists and historians). Abarta also runs a gorgeous Instagram account and blog. Abarta is a great resource for travelers but just as enjoyable and informative for those who dream of "one day" hopping the pond to Ireland. Neil Jackman, from Abarta also runs Time Travel Ireland, a great website featuring archaeological site around Ireland.

An Irish High Cross - Carvings Explained

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Mini Notecard Set

5 (one of each) 2.5 x 3.5 blank notecards with envelopes for $8
Available in Sets of 5, 10 or 15 cards.
Great mini collection ready for framing or to add some Irish charm to any gift.
(Free postcard included with purchase)

Go HERE to get yours today !

*** The USPS states that this size is too small to be mailable. I have, however, successfully sent several. I do always add the extra 21 cents (70 cents total) for non - machineable surcharge (because it's too tiny to go to through sorting machines).

Friday, June 2, 2017

May Emerald Post

June's Emerald Post is being prepared to dispatch. It is inspired the ancient history of the Celtic Isles which can be experienced by visiting the ancient stone monuments dating as far back as the Neolithic & Bronze ages. It will include a watercolor of stone monuments, a print of an Irish Stone Circle among other treasures. Snatch up a June Emerald Post up HERE.

May's Emerald Post is still available, too. It included a 5x7 print of an Oak Stained Glass Panel in watercolor, a 4x6 print of an illuminated oak leaf, a botanical card for Hawthorn, and an ivy laden mini notecard.  Get a May issue HERE or you can purchase the Oak Panel individually HERE.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Hawthorn - Myth & Magic of the May Tree

Today I want to share some of the fascinating folklore surrounding the Hawthorn Tree which inspired this botanical card in the May Issue of Emerald Post (You can still get May's issue HERE)....

Folklore holds that Hawthorn trees possess magical properties and guard entrances to the Faery Realm. These often lone, gnarled and weathered trees stand sentinel at portals to the Otherworld. Across the verdant isles of Ireland and Great Britain you may notice the frequent presence of a single tree atop a barren hill, amid moorland or bog land, standing eerily alone. These are most often the well respected and revered Hawthorn Trees.

Hawthorn at Hound Tor, Dartmoor, Devon, England

Throughout Celtic lands, Hawthorns are found very near ancient standing stones and stone circles, sacred springs, and holy wells where visitors and pilgrims adorn the revered tree with ribbons, rags, cloth, or other offerings as they say a prayer, utter a wish, or offer gratitude. Referred to as Wishing Trees, Rag Trees, Faery Trees, or Clottie Trees, their branches hang low under the weight of wishes and prayers.

A Faerie Tree near Killary Harbour in Ireland
Though considered bad luck much of the time, Hawthorns can also bestow good luck and protection. Flowering in May, the Hawthorn has long been associated with May Day and the ancient Celtic festival of Beltane. The month of May is the only time one should take a sprig from a Hawthorn. A flowering branch was traditionally gathered on the eve of May 1st and placed on or above the threshold of the house to banish evil spirits and protect the household from misfortune, or caried by a maiden to attract a husband. Bathing in the May morning dew of hawthorn blossoms is said to bring health, beauty, good fortune, and even wealth.  A Hawthorn planted or growing near the home is said to protect it from lightning, storms, and, of course, witches.  

I’ve seen many a Hawthorn on my travels across Ireland and Great Britain. Almost always, there is one at the entrance to a stone circle and often draped with the offerings of visitors who’ve come before me. The places where the Hawthorns dwell, they do seem to hold a certain energy, a beauty, a clarity, and usually some peculiar weather like a harsh wind, a thick fog, or an eerie stillness. Perhaps it is only the landscape, specifically chosen by ancient peoples for such attributes or maybe, just maybe, it is the faeries.
Faery Hawthorn at Ballynoe Stone Circle - Ireland

Faery Hawthorn at Beaghmore Stone Circle, Ireland

Explore the world of Hawthorns and Folklore more :

Learn more about Faery Wish Trees HERE.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Happy May Day! A Wee Bit Late

Ox Eye Daisy, Wild Hyacinth, Blooms from Rose Verbena, Leaves from Wild Bergamot.

With all the rain and storms that have washed over the Midwest of late, it didn't surprise me that I lost my internet for some time. That was the extent of damage from the storms that we faced. I'm quite fortunate that my hearth and home stayed dry unlike so many unfortunate folks who've faced recent flooding. So I've got some catching up to do here.

A week back was the 1st of May, May Day, or Beltane. On the old Celtic Calendar, which is wheel shaped rather than linear and based on the cycles and rhythms of the earth and plants, May 1st is the beginning of summer. It is a day to celebrate sunshine and blossoms, the return of the green, fertile earth. There are many folk traditions, such as bonfires, the May Pole and Jack in the Green, that still persist across Celtic lands, many are remnants from much older traditions. Below are a few sites that provide a lovely peak into the persistence of the old world in the modern day.

May Day Post from Traveling Chariot a few years ago HERE

You can read more about the old calendar wheel here:
Irish Central
Living Myths

Friday, May 5, 2017

April Emerald Post

The April Issue of Emerald Post (apologies for late arrival - I squeezed in a mini vacation to the Rockies in there) features some inquisitive natives. Pictured above is a 5x7 notecard and envelope featuring lambs at Walltown Crags which is the site of Hadrian's Wall near the border of Scotland and England. Around 122 AD, Roman Emperor Hadrian set to building a fortified wall along the Scottish border for patrol and defense from what he considered the barbarian, and unconquerable, tribes of the Highlands, such as the native Pict tribe. The Wall stretched from the east coast to the west, with several strategic manned forts along the way. You can read more of my visit there HERE. The April issue contained a mini notecard and envelope as well, featuring a sheep scrambling up to the base of Carreg Cennen Castle in Wales. Also included was a 4x6 postcard of the arched threshold between Cong Abbey ruins and the Cong Woodland in Ireland. Can you spot a Green Man left by the master mason?