Wednesday, 10 August 2016

TABI Tarot Conference | The Day!

As one of the organisers, you need to be up bright and early to make sure that all is going according to plan.  Witness the breakfast table at 8am:

Late night in bar = this breakfast table
Yes, that's my lonesome plate of food :-D

Anyway, Caroline materialised soon afterwards and we started to get the show on the road.  Caroline manned the check-in desk and I manned the Conference room.

Every year we are supported by various publishers in our goody bags for attendees.  This year we had help from PGUK, Eddison Books, Schiffer and Carrie Paris (although Carrie's Siren's Song Lenormand is still getting printed!)

We had lots of lovely attendees this year.  In fact we sold out of places! We were joined by Kim Arnold (London) and Kirsten Buchholzer (Verbandes Tarot e V - Germany)... Barbie Davidson and Linda Marson (Australia) and Rashunda Tramble (Switzerland) .... along with the many other well-travelled TABI members!

Goody bags - with TABI branding on the front.
I *know* super posh
Our first speaker was Karen Mahony from Baba Studio and she began with a presentation about their move to Kerry from Prague and the work of the studio.  She then moved on to talking about working with the Majors and the Minors and gave us a couple of spreads to demonstrate:

Karen Mahony | Baba Studio
ps - see that li'l white adapter on the table ....
that was the source of ALL my worries the previous day
God bless the lad at the Apple Store :-D 
It was then the turn of long-time TABI member and creator of the Celtic Lenormand Oracle, Chloe McCracken.  She took us on a journey through working with a pendulum and the chakras... and the Tarot!

Chloe McCracken | Pendulum work
Now it was lunch time and everyone piled back into the dining room for a self-service that let you stock up on whatever you wanted with as many revisits to the food bar as you needed!  And dessert!!

After lunch it was over to Emily Carding to explore the use of Tarot and Sigils.  Drawing from the ability to create compound images with her Transparent Tarot and Oracle, we set out to explore making sigils using standard tarot cards.  With an amazing ritual at the end of the workshop, we had a blast!

Emily Carding | Tarot and Sigils
At afternoon coffee break we drew the raffle - with the top prizes being our kickstarter copy of Andrea Aste's Book of Shadows Tarot and a silk scarf kindly donated by Karen, from Baba Studio.  I, of course, won absolutely nothing.  I never win ANYTHING in raffles :-D

Then it was the turn of our last speaker, Julia Jeffrey who had accompanied me down from Glasgow.  Julia is the creator of The Tarot of the Hidden Realm and we had the opportunity to work with her beautiful deck, exploring various Hidden Realm spreads.

Julia Jeffrey | Tarot of the Hidden Realm
And suddenly it was allllll over!  I presented Caroline with a well-deserved art voucher for all her work - double-deserved given that all the things I had volunteered to do to take some of the weight off her, I ended up leaving back at home in my computer bag.  And Caroline, bless her cotton socks, on behalf of TABI gave me a lovely voucher for Bute School of Art - which I will very much look forward to using!!

For almost everyone it was over, but for us travelling back to Glasgow, we had one more night in Aston and then home.  And what a lovely evening that turned out to be - both our Australian attendees, Linda and Barbie, were there, as was Rashunda our attendee who was flying back to Switzerland on the Sunday.  We had a lovely .... and slightly irreverent ... bar meal and glass or two of wine to unwind.

And then on Sunday, it was the long (and not uneventful) drive back up the M6, the M74, the M8, the ferry ........ and home :)

See you next year!

Thursday, 4 August 2016

TABI Tarot Conference | 2016 | The Saga of my lap top bag - Part 1

'Back to the ferry -
and don't spare the horses!'
Although our annual Tarot gig in Birmingham didn't kick off until Friday afternoon, my journey began the previous day as I decanted my son and dog up to my mother's so that I could make an early start.

We arrived in sunny Airdrie at about 2pm and I sat with a mug of tea and chatted with my mum as Sonshine and the dog mooched about looking for things to do/eat.  At 4pm I was hit with the sudden thought: 'hey where did I put my computer bag oh jesus I have left it behind'

Friday, 15 July 2016

The Queen of Weeping

I've not been here for a while, not because anything drastic has happened (thank goodness!), but just because the gas has leaked out of my balloons. Not just my helium-filled, sparkly Tarot balloon, but all the other balloons as well.

Maybe it's because I became a veggie a few months ago.  Basically so that I could look lambs in the eye and whisper 'I don't eat you' when I take Nero on a long walk down to our nearby lochan.  I've noticed that life has kinda gone a bit flat and wrinkly round the edges - maybe it's lack of iron or something.

Blood tests will tell whether it's what I'm eating or something more long-lasting that's the cause ...

... because I am 53 in a couple of weeks.  Of course, I'm grateful that I'm still above the soil and able to feel the sun on my face and be healthy and all that jazz, but there is no doubt about it, Things Are Changing for me.

Chaps, look away now: menses talk ahead.

My Time of the Month has now become My Time of the Fortnight and my pre-menstrual moodiness seems to last for about three weeks.  And the seven day window when I'm not snapping away like an angry pike at my DH and DS I'm to be found draped theatrically over the sofa like Ellen Terry, weeping into my Snickers bars at dog food adverts and Beyonce videos.

A couple of years ago, I stopped dying my hair.  At the moment it is a sort of two-tone thing that looks as if someone has poured bleach all over my head and all the colour is draining away.  A metaphor there, I think. But I'm sticking with it because .... like it or not ..... I am ENTERING CRONEHOOD.

Evidence:  I keep signing up for afternoon art classes. Like I am suddenly going to discover that I can fall down the art rabbit hole and pop out the other end of a 6-week course and suddenly find myself a new, arty life ....  I *know* it's BEYOND PATHETIC.

On the upside, this means that one day soon, my older gal pals will initiate me into their Post Menopause Group, the DUFs Club.  The Dried Up Fannies Club.  I kid you not.  REAL NAME. My goal is to be ensconced within their ranks, safely out the other side of this hormonal maelstrom, drinking wine, eating Dairy Milk and never having to worry about the gusset of my knickers again.

Now, if I'm absolutely honest.  And I've just mentioned 'gusset' and 'knickers' in the same sentence, so we're Through The Looking Glass now, this horrible flat and foggy feeling has been swirling around my ankles for a very long time.   Longer than I've been veggie.  Longer than my hormones have been sliding about like a drunk on a skateboard.

And as the fog rises like a suffocating tide, I just seem to be getting angrier and angrier and angrier.

Maybe it's an anger borne of fear.

I know that I am on the brink of saying farewell to so many strands of my life and it scares me.

What will I be if I am not menstruating any more?
What am I now that my partner does not find me attractive?
Will we manage to make it through these choppy relationship waters?
What will I be when my son goes off to further education?
What am I without a job or career?

Drew a card to see what can help me, from the Wildwood Tarot and got this guy:


I am moving from primitive tool to sophisticated instrument.

Maybe also get viagra ;-D

Thursday, 26 May 2016

Full Moon Spread

So I thought I'd come up with a Full Moon spread for the fans of the Wildwood Tarot over there in facebookland. Am popping it here in case it might be something that you want to add to your own toolbox.

You can use any deck :)

Monday, 23 May 2016

The Sunday Times Rich List Tarot Cards | Sam Dunn

So, the Sunday Times Rich List campaign featured some cleverly updated Tarot cards, depicting some famous faces.

I got in touch with the artist behind the campaign, Sam Dunn,  and she agreed to answer some of my questions about the artwork :)

Me:   How did you get involved in the campaign?