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RavenFlyer

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I just wanted to let you all know that I have started my own personal blog. It's focus is on Appalachian culture, magical practice, my own personal practice, and folklore. Please feel free to read, comment and share it with your friends!

 

Blog: Witchin' from the Holler

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Thank you very much. I have good intentions of updating it often, but you know what they say about good intentions.

 

Currently I work a full time job, help a friend at her store on my days off when she needs me, run an etsy store where I make all the items, attempt a personal life, planting a very large garden, take care of 2 cats, and try to visit my parents in another state. So taking on another project seems like the smart thing to do. What can I say I don't like being bored.

 

Oh and I am beginning to learn to play the Autoharp!

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This is cool-I'll definitely read more.

 

This sort of thing is really resonating with me as of very late, from hearing my own elderly grandmother say a few "funny" things. She is Scottish/Irish and from western PA/West Virginia area originally and her dad was a miner! She is a strict christian <always has been>, but I am realizing lately <as in this past year>, she does a kind of folk magic and doesn't even realize it!!!

 

She hesitates to admit <and even so, admits quietly and would never say such a thing at church!> she can see and talk to my deceased grandfather and says some other odd things. We went out to breakfast a few months ago and she pulled out her wallet. She pointed to a picture of my deceased brother and my deceased grandfather and showed me her money "hiding" behind the pictures. She said shhh!, I asked them to protect my money and they do. Remember, they were both soldiers-they are good at protecting! My jaw dropped but I didn't say anything.

 

Just yesterday, I was talking to her on the phone, and she has been very sick and worried about a visit we were going to make over there today. When I persisted and told her we won't get sick, she said, "Oh, ok...I guess I can take the top off of an onion, put it on a dish, and set in on the windowsill in the sunlight" -that'll get rid of any sickness...Knowing better now, I simply said "oh, that's interesting Grandma, where did you learn that? <without asking if there is any reference to folk magic..ect..I wouldn't dare-she'd have none of that kind of talk!!> She said, "Oh I was taught that when I was a kid..we always did that to get rid of a sickness-it works to! I quietly wrote it all down and just told her it was interesting.

 

It makes me wonder, RF, about their generation -and generations before-and how much magic was actually intertwined with every day life-even for the Christians-without them knowing it even!

 

I'll put your blog on my favs...I can't wait to see what you share on it!

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Oh yes. There are a ton of magical activities that good Christian folk partake in daily. But they'd never call it that!

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This is cool-I'll definitely read more.

 

This sort of thing is really resonating with me as of very late, from hearing my own elderly grandmother say a few "funny" things. She is Scottish/Irish and from western PA/West Virginia area originally and her dad was a miner! She is a strict christian <always has been>, but I am realizing lately <as in this past year>, she does a kind of folk magic and doesn't even realize it!!!

 

She hesitates to admit <and even so, admits quietly and would never say such a thing at church!> she can see and talk to my deceased grandfather and says some other odd things. We went out to breakfast a few months ago and she pulled out her wallet. She pointed to a picture of my deceased brother and my deceased grandfather and showed me her money "hiding" behind the pictures. She said shhh!, I asked them to protect my money and they do. Remember, they were both soldiers-they are good at protecting! My jaw dropped but I didn't say anything.

 

Just yesterday, I was talking to her on the phone, and she has been very sick and worried about a visit we were going to make over there today. When I persisted and told her we won't get sick, she said, "Oh, ok...I guess I can take the top off of an onion, put it on a dish, and set in on the windowsill in the sunlight" -that'll get rid of any sickness...Knowing better now, I simply said "oh, that's interesting Grandma, where did you learn that? <without asking if there is any reference to folk magic..ect..I wouldn't dare-she'd have none of that kind of talk!!> She said, "Oh I was taught that when I was a kid..we always did that to get rid of a sickness-it works to! I quietly wrote it all down and just told her it was interesting.

 

It makes me wonder, RF, about their generation -and generations before-and how much magic was actually intertwined with every day life-even for the Christians-without them knowing it even!

 

I'll put your blog on my favs...I can't wait to see what you share on it!

 

One of my Granny's did similar things Anara and she was a christian too. That's awesome that you're writing it down! :)

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I find that most of the elderly have a ton of folkloric tales regardless of their religion. They just didn't term it "craft" anymore than I would term weeding my garden "craft" or taking a spoonful of honey to still a cough. What you could do is tell her that you want to remember all her old stories and tales and pass them on to your kids as a way of preserving your family history, and would she mind telling you all the stories about what was done "back in the day" and you could write them down and make a book for your furture (or current, lol) children - I bet she'd love that, including spending the time with you and reliving her memories.

 

M

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One of my Granny's did similar things Anara and she was a christian too. That's awesome that you're writing it down! :)

 

I thank the forums here for helping to open my eyes a bit regarding this sort of subject. I just never knew it was right under my nose until joining here and learning from you guys this past year! Remember, these <my mother/grandmother> are the same women that burned my witch books as a teen and would disown me if I told them I was a "witch"! Odd!!

 

That's why I think a blog like RFs is important for those of us in this part of the world. Maybe we'll learn more about our own families! I'd love to know more.

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Michele that is one of the best suggestions ion this site bar none. If I were on my computer and not my phone I would +1 your post.

Collecting oral history is one of the most important thing we can do to preserve our culture (whatever it may be). With so many of the elderly taking their knowledge with them when they die the world at large is loosing a lot of its seperate culture.

I see so many areas in the US where the cultures are being homogenized and it sadden me.

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I thank the forums here for helping to open my eyes a bit regarding this sort of subject. I just never knew it was right under my nose until joining here and learning from you guys this past year! Remember, these <my mother/grandmother> are the same women that burned my witch books as a teen and would disown me if I told them I was a "witch"! Odd!!

 

That's why I think a blog like RFs is important for those of us in this part of the world. Maybe we'll learn more about our own families! I'd love to know more.

 

Many of the older folk traditions in my area (Ozark folk traditions are very similar to Appalachian) consider the 'witches' anyone who is using the lore to make trouble, try to harm them, etc. They wouldn't acknowledge themselves as such, even when they do the same things. Just speaking from my experiences.. others may have come across different reasons.

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I find that most of the elderly have a ton of folkloric tales regardless of their religion. They just didn't term it "craft" anymore than I would term weeding my garden "craft" or taking a spoonful of honey to still a cough. What you could do is tell her that you want to remember all her old stories and tales and pass them on to your kids as a way of preserving your family history, and would she mind telling you all the stories about what was done "back in the day" and you could write them down and make a book for your furture (or current, lol) children - I bet she'd love that, including spending the time with you and reliving her memories.

 

M

 

I'll try it and see what happens!

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Umm, not sure how to do that lol

Good read though, must agree there :)

 

Gram, not sure you can do it on your phone but on a computer, you can set up a Google Reader account (http://www.google.com/reader). (I know there are others but can't think of any off the top of my head.) On that, you copy the url of whatever blog you want to follow & "subscribe" to it. After that, it pulls any new posts into one site so you can read 'em all in one place.

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Oh how nice, Raven Flyer. Thank you, I too will join with our Peers in keeping an eye on your blog.

 

Regards,

Gypsy

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Many of the older folk traditions in my area (Ozark folk traditions are very similar to Appalachian) consider the 'witches' anyone who is using the lore to make trouble, try to harm them, etc. They wouldn't acknowledge themselves as such, even when they do the same things. Just speaking from my experiences.. others may have come across different reasons.

 

Not to get too off topic here, but I just thought this was interesting. This might sound silly, but I had never really heard of "The Ozarks" before joining these forums and have seen quite a few posts on these people since then. I'd like to do some additional reading on them-I see your signature here referencing a book. If you had to recommend one on the topic, would that be the one? Or would there be another?

 

Thanks

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Not to get too off topic here, but I just thought this was interesting. This might sound silly, but I had never really heard of "The Ozarks" before joining these forums and have seen quite a few posts on these people since then. I'd like to do some additional reading on them-I see your signature here referencing a book. If you had to recommend one on the topic, would that be the one? Or would there be another?

 

Thanks

 

I'd definitely recommend that one. I hadn't read it till I came here and was asking about some things my Granny did, and Jevne found a reference to the practice in Ozark Magic and Folklore (I was born and raised in the Ozarks) and so I got a copy and read it. I was surprised to find a lot of the same lore I'd learned growing up documented all through it when Mr. Randolph was doing his interviews in the '30's. The book is centered on interviews with people who lived in the exact area I grew up in, and a few of the people interviewed are related to me. So, I'm a little biased in my recommendation of this book. ;)

 

One of my dear friends was raised in the Appalachian folk tradition and we've discussed many of the things we learned from our elders and found that Ozark and Appalachian traditions are practically the same, although of course different families will add their own flavor.

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They are made out of dried apples. I am currently in the process of drying the first apple head doll I've ever made. It it turns out I plan on making a post about it and detailing the process.

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I'd definitely recommend that one. I hadn't read it till I came here and was asking about some things my Granny did, and Jevne found a reference to the practice in Ozark Magic and Folklore (I was born and raised in the Ozarks) and so I got a copy and read it. I was surprised to find a lot of the same lore I'd learned growing up documented all through it when Mr. Randolph was doing his interviews in the '30's. The book is centered on interviews with people who lived in the exact area I grew up in, and a few of the people interviewed are related to me. So, I'm a little biased in my recommendation of this book. ;)

 

One of my dear friends was raised in the Appalachian folk tradition and we've discussed many of the things we learned from our elders and found that Ozark and Appalachian traditions are practically the same, although of course different families will add their own flavor.

 

That's awesome! I bet finding that book was a treasure for you-especially since some of your very own kin were interviewed-so cool!

 

Ok, I'll put that book on my list. Thanks for the recommendation.

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Enjoyed reading the doll article. Those apple dolls are interesting to look at!

 

Thanks. I have my first apple head dehydrating right now. I hope to have dolls part 2 up in the next day or so.

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They are made out of dried apples. I am currently in the process of drying the first apple head doll I've ever made. It it turns out I plan on making a post about it and detailing the process.

 

Woah, woah! Omg, apple headed dolls! I haven't thought or remember them in years! I grew up in central PA and I remember people making them like an arts and crafts project and seeing them for sale and in homes. I had no idea; I can't wait to read your blog! i have always felt a little rootless, not having any guidance or teaching when I was a kid, growing up in a small PA town and all. Or for as far as I know, not seeing anyone or thing "witchy" tho if that word had been used back then it would have scared me.

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