A Polytheistic Christmas or Santa is the American God

This year, 2018, was the first year that Witchlette genuinely prayed to Skadi and Idunn. She closed her eyes and softly moved her mouth in private offerings to her goddesses.

We discuss the gods regularly. Both kiddos know a vast majority of the pantheon and they also know that some people don’t believe in our gods, they believe in other gods. Some gods come from Egypt, some from Greece, some from Ireland. Ours come from the most northern parts of Northern Europe. These gods are tied to the ancestry on my mother’s side. There are gods of my father’s ancestry, though those never spoke to me no matter how hard I tried. There are gods of their father’s ancestry, both on his father’s and mother’s side. I have shared with the kids that I will be happy to research those deities as much as I can and share all that I learn. I started searching Slavic deities, but Witchlette wasn’t ready yet. She may never be, because she has found a connection with Skadi and Idunn.

They both know that most people around us are “Jesus people” and we are not and that’s ok too. We’ve talked about how being a Jesus person, or not, doesn’t make you good or bad. It’s just what you believe in your religion. It’s your divine connection. And who you talk to, or don’t, doesn’t determine your worth.

As a polytheistic family, we regularly give libations to our gods. We regularly give offerings. We practice Gebo, a gift for a gift. You have to give something to get something.

Every year, we offer a horn of mead to Odin, the original Santa, who leaves presents in stockings. We leave cookie and milk for Santa, who leaves presents under the tree. We leave food in the yard for both Slepnir and the reindeer, who respectively do the heavy lifting.

I am trying to actively raise the two to not have a vending machine relationship with their respective gods. To practice Gebo so that when you do need something, the gods will be there. Also personal ownership. Witchlette and I specifically talked about not studying for her spelling test, then asking Skadi to help her pass the test, won’t work. She responded, “If I study for the test, and ask Skadi to be with me for confidence while I take the test, that would work.”

She nailed it exactly.

But, back to Santa. We leave him milk and cookies, and he leaves the kids presents. We are not the only ones. Families across the country set up milk and cookies for the big man in red, in return for presents.

Everyone leaves him an offering. A libation. A prayer.

Santa truly is America’s God.


It’s not feeling like Mabon

When I first started my Path, I was completely confused about why in the world the first day of summer would be called Midsummer. It was the beginning of summer. Don’t try to rush my summer away!

Then I started to dig deeper and I learned about my ancestors’ solar calendar and that Midsummer is halfway through on of their two seasons: summer and winter.

Ostara is the first day of Summer.

Mabon is the first day of Winter.

Solarly, that is.

It’s still in the 80s here in Raleigh and while the leaves have begun to change, I’m not in the spirit of Mabon.

I’m not yet wearing sweaters and boots. I’m not yet in jeans and sweater leggings.

I’m still in tank tops and shorts. I’m still going strong with sundresses.

But as I learned over the summer, you don’t do offers and libations when you feel close to the Gods. You do offers and libations to connect with the Gods. The offers and libations come first.

So, I put out the general fall decor today. Hung my leaf and acorn garland. The Raven candle holder is on the dining room table.

Even though the leaves are just starting change, it’s beginning to feel a lot like fall at home.

What they want, a rambling reprise

Yesterday, Hubby and I found the perfect shelf to finish off my altar space. This leave a place for tools to remain easily accessible, versus in a drawer behind the space where I keep loose herbs and extra candles.

With Odin, Eir, and Heimdall moving to their new places, only Loki, Ullr, and Tyr remained. Tyr wanted to be close to the dogs, but didn’t specify where. The dogs are wherever we are, typically. But I needed Loki to stay with Tyr to keep him in check. Ullr wanted his own space too, but he wasn’t coming in clearly. Everything was muddled and fuddled.

Things were better since the beautiful ritual R shared at CotE that morning. Healing and cathertic. Big changes are coming with kindergarten and I feel like I’m making everything balance on my shoulders. My work schedule releases earlier. We have two awesome grandma’s ready and waiting in the wings. Hubby has said, in a deer-in-headlights what if we (read: I) can’t do it all, that he is prepared to make time with work stuff too and that we (read: we) can do it all. Saying this aloud in a safe space, my need to do everything and not lose myself [again], with the purpose of cleansing right along with the rest of my community, many of whom shared their own personal growth works and commitments they need to uphold, lifted a nervous knot in my stomach that planted itself last Monday. By giving the knot words, I took away it’s power over myself because now I have a focus- to not lose myself. (hold that thought)

But still, muddled and fuddled.

Looking at the altar, I realized I was tiptoeing around Loki. I had an idea and got some supplies together. As Hubby saw me carefully wrapping Loki in cotton and placing him in a box, he joked and said if only we had a snake to hang above him. I giggled, but it was brilliant. I drew a snake on the box and the crazy energy I’ve been feeling the last few weeks disappated.

There’s too much retrograde right now to invite chaos. I don’t hate chaos in fact, I usually function in controlled chaos. But right now, I needed to bind that shit, at least for the moment.

With Loki dealt with, I brought Tyr downstairs and set him up with Eir. They both like their new place.

I put Ullr down in the living room and, as Hubby and I spent time together, Ullr came in loud and clear: he wants to live in Witchling’s room. Hubby chuckled at the appropriateness of the move.

This morning, after he awoke, I went into Witchling’s room and placed Ullr there.

Now, there are two. And the lovely tapestry I created. And the awesome shelf Hubby found and hung.

(Resume thought from above)

I’ve been riding the struggle bus for the three weeks that I said I would awake early to go through my morning routine, work or no work. And I didn’t pick up an evening routine because watching TV and trolling the internet just felt more rewarding in the moment. Perhaps it was too cluttered. Likely also my focus was too pessimistic to be motivated. Struggle bus never made it to the station this morning and I rode the 5:35 motivation bus instead. I walked the dogs, did my morning prayers to Frigg, and then Witchlette bounded into the room just in time to start yoga. She got her yoga mat and we had a great session this morning.

What they want, they get

Confession time:

Our front room, second living space, dubbed “the library” because that was my childhood goal…

Our front room is the last room with boxes, and much of the boxes are stuff that needs to make it’s way to the crafting space upstairs, which is also a chaotic moving clusterfuck.

I lost my patience for getting to the library eventually and cleared the space out myself Friday.

Ahh…much better!

Ok, background for the next part…

A few times, I have put some of my alter totems into a cabinet as things were being cleaned, or as certain rituals were being conducted and during which the presence of other deities would have been distracting both visually and spiritually. There was a point when Tyr, Odin, Loki, and Heimdall were in the cabinet for two weeks. They were not happy. Odin was pissed. When I did the Full 13 moon, everyone but Frigg was cabinetted. Frigg has never been cabinetted.

Last week, two more pieces have arrived, in the form of Ullr and Eir.

(Some people collect mugs, I collect gods 🤷😊)

The altar is getting crowded. I have shelves which will [eventually] be hung and some of the totems will move there.

During meditation yesterday, Odin made it clear he does not want to be in my bedroom. He wants to live in the library.

Heimdall wants to be on the front table, by the door.

Eir wants to be able to see the kitchen. Respectfully, she doesn’t want to be in the kitchen, likely because that is already space dedicated to Frigg, but she wants to be close.

Tyr wants to be close to the dogs, and it feels weird moving him away from Loki. Like, he keeps Loki in check. Loki doesn’t want to be on my altar, but also hasn’t specified a space where he will land. I like him sandwiched between Thor and Tyr where he is presently.

Hubby has been on board with everything else so far, why not to having Gods move in around the house. He took to them having new homes around the house really well.

It’ll feel like work

Sunday evening, I sat down and did my Sunday evening journaling. After some meditation and writing, I did a Rune pull.

Pertho, Othala, Fehu, Dagaz, Ingwaz in merkstave, and Nauthiz in merkstave.

I will have a spiritual breakthrough and my ancestors will be behind me on the way. But it will be work and it will feel like work.

The universe gives signs. Whether you see them or not typically depends on your perspective, but they are there. I’ve been getting signs of 20 minutes a day for a few months now. Just this morning, I finally got to the post by Gangleri: a video by a priest sharing the story of how Steve Martin became a Grammy winning banjo musician. And how that can apply to any aspect of one’s life, including spiritual work. The priest spoke a lot about doing in the darkness what you also do in the light. The first comment is from a polytheistic perspective, where a Hindu leader remarks that you don’t “blackmail the gods” into giving you a good mood so that you will do their ritual. Rather, you do the ritual, especially when you don’t feel like it, to get into a good mood.

I’ve been working and getting much better, much stronger.

Summer vacation started, and I began waking with Hubby, rather than before him, and I would walk the dogs and then spend time with him. By time he left for work, I wouldn’t go to my morning meditations, because the kids would be awake and I’m now spending time with them. But I still need time with meditation, with the gods, with my ancestors.

Luke Cage season 2 is going to have to wait, as last night I officially shifted my meditation time from the morning to the night. Putting off something fun makes it work-like. Digging deeper makes it feel more work like.

I’ve been walking to this threshold for about a year now. I’m ready to step over it, to dig deeper.


Yesterday, driving home from school, the kids and I passed an abandoned church. Witchlette saw it, and the cross sitting high above it, and the three of us had the following conversation:

W4: Mama, is that x a Jesus x?

M: yes it is

W4: why is it there

M: the people who follow Jesus as their god go to that church. They know it’s a Jesus church because of the cross on top.

W2: the star?

W4: no that’s an x for Jesus

W2: who’s Jesus?

W4: another god but not our god. What other gods are there?

M: lots and lots of God’s from lots of different places

W4: like who?

M: Thor, Odin, Frigg are all from Germany. I wonder if Ms. S (Pre-K teacher) holds Ganesha, Buddha, or Jesus as her god. Or maybe she doesn’t have a god.

W4: who’s Ganesha?

M: a god from India

W4: like Ms. S!

W2: I think her has a yellow Buddha like we have a blue Buddha

M: maybe

W2: who’s Jesus

W4: the x god

W2: I like Heimdall

W4: I like Skadi

Denying what’s yours

Breaking down the fourth wall: I often write blog posts a few at a time and schedule them to publish at random times in the future. I wrote “Food for Thought” the night before Election Day, but scheduled it for that Saturday because I wanted to focus on the time sensitive topic of voting.

A regular commenter wrote at the bottom of the post “This is rather thought provoking. Though I can’t help but think that even though the logic of “No one can deny another their experience” is utterly sound, most people won’t be able to respect that.”

I responded, “After writing this post, I had just that experience! I am letting emotions die down before I go into details, but they’re coming.”

This is that post.

I had the experience after I had written the post, but before it was published.

No one can deny another their experience. Those are my words and I hold them true. I would never ask anyone to change what they believe. I would ask only that they do not push their beliefs onto me and that they respect my beliefs as I respect theirs.

I used these memes on previous posts, but they fit the bill here as well.



I have mentioned on here that I am a public school teacher. As such, I am a worker bee of the state. I do not and will not preach my theology to my students. I would be livid would someone ever dare try to push their theology onto Witchlette. She could pick up any faith she wants, or decide on none at all. That is her personal choice…and anyone who would try to convince her otherwise would have to deal with this Mama Bear. Point is, I keep my faith out of the classroom.

This year, I am teaching British literature with my seniors (as an English-EC teacher, I have a very small class). We were reading Sonnets 116 and 130. Both are about love, 116 is serious and 130 is less so. Sonnet 116 discusses what true love is and what it is not. I was able to get my students to the points that true deep honest love is not an emotion that is fleeting. It is not something that you wake up one morning and are suddenly without. It is not something that one feels for things. Real love has to be reciprocated.

It was at this point that a very religious co-worker walked into the room and headed for her desk.

One student asked, “Well…what about God? I love God. But that’s not reciprocal….so is it not real love?”

“Sure, it’s real love,” I answered, “And it can be reciprocal.”

“How?” another student asked.

Like I said, I like to keep faith out of the classroom. But I cannot deny the questions these students were asking. But still, I refuse to preach. My response began with a disclaimer: “Remember, when we were reading Beowulf, and I told you guys I wasn’t Christian?” All nodded. “So when I say Goddess, I don’t mean the Christian God, your God, I mean one of my gods.”

“There is only one God.” butted in my coworker, standing up.

I could have spit nails. That falls under preaching, especially with the standing, and you’re hijacking my lesson! I am still very proud of myself for keeping my cool in the moment. I did take a week to get this into words on this blog, however. I needed emotions to die down and I didn’t need to write something that could hurt me in the long run.

“That’s your opinion,” I responded.

“So what,” she countered, “You think there is more than one god?”

“Yes…I’m polytheistic.”

She rolled her eyes, sat at her desk, and looked at her computer.

I returned my attention to my students and repeated my disclaimer. I then related to them the story of how I was struggling with nursing Witchlette when she was just a few days old. We had a really bad attempt and an hour later, after Hubby sent me to be and soothed her then put her to bed, she was up and crying for food again. And we again had issues. But this time, I felt a calming presence and a voice- I wasn’t literally hearing things, but a voice in my mind that wasn’t my own- said, “You know what to do.” I adjusted my position, tried again, and had had success ever since. And that Goddess coming to me that night was a reciprocative relationship.

The student who initially asked the question smiled knowing that her love for her God is real. My other students were left with something to think about.

Truth be told…I still exploring polytheism, but it felt right to say. At this point, I think I am hard polytheist when it comes to the deities being individuals and not representations of the one divine. However, I also think there is a reason why so many gods and goddesses have similar roles across pantheons. I think there may be a definite set number of deities and that they present themselves to cultures who name them and worship them. I think Freya and Venus and Aphrodite and Hathor and Aine may be one in the same. They presented themselves to the peoples at the times who interpreted them to fit their cultural needs.

The polytheism I am focused on currently is in the Norse pantheon. My main three are Ullr (this was deity identified in the Rune reading I had done in September), Thor (he also came up in the same reading…and I have been feeling his pull for a long while now), and Frigga. I am convinced that Frigga is the one who came to me that night with Witchlette. I was doing some reading and researching and when I came across her name one night a few weeks ago, my crown chakra lit up! Even now, when I think her name, my chakra tingles. I have dreams about these deities at least once a week. There is no denying that my spiritual atheism with a strong focus on the elements has evolved into light polytheism with a strong focus on the elements.