Friends, June 10, 2018
“Beeville” is now the name of our little homestead in Birch Bay, Washington. The buzz got started when the pink, purple, white and red delphiniums opened their faces in the front flower bed. Leslie has flowers blooming all around our house, and the bees love it.
The big attraction, however, are the two California Lilac bushes outside our bedroom window. Each is ten feet high and four feet wide and covered with baby blue blooms the size of your thumb. There must be over a thousand flowers on each bush – viewed from the street all you can see are blue blossoms drawing hundreds of bees to the party. The fragrance from all the flowers that wafts into the room is sweet – I love the smell of lilac. Everything is green and growing in the fields and forest. We’ve had the driest and hottest May weather on record and it’s amazing how fast everything grows here. Partially due to the long hours of sunlight. Dawn is at 5 am. Sundown is after 9 pm. We are lucky that the snowpack in the mountains from Winter storms is deep and will keep the rivers flowing even with warmer temperatures. Strawberries are front and center now – warm temperatures make the new crop sweet and plentiful. “Barbie’s Berries” has already opened their little stand in the shopping center parking lot. And strawberries were easily the big seller at the Farmers Market last weekend. This is our favorite Saturday event. The city of Bellingham has done a great job creating a building and space for the farmers to bring their fresh produce to market. The building is made of steel girders with glass walls and ceiling – it’s light and airy inside. We immediately hit one of the bakery stands inside when we arrive and get a treat to munch on as we survey all the different booths. Lots to see and the crowd is festive. Flowers, jewelry, artesian cheeses, plus local honey and loads of fresh veggies all get our perusal. The food booths have lots of choices. Leslie always hits the Indian booth and gets samosas, a taste she acquired while living in England years ago. I get some iced coffee and we wander around enjoying the good vibes and the happy faces of children with their faces painted pretending to be a princess or Spiderman. Also happy were the folks who walked around with a flat of bright red strawberries in one arm sampling same as they checked out the shrub booth or the local potter who had beautiful blue cups and plates on display. We made it to the Scottish gathering two weeks ago. Leslie and I both have Scottish blood in our veins and we love to join all the clans and celebrate our heritage. And I really enjoy the bagpipe and drum groups who put on a show. Of course, we had a quick brew at the beer tent and met some old timers in kilts with stories of the history of their family from centuries ago. We had a perfect day in a wonderful park with the forest encircling green fields and an old pioneer house and barn dating back to the 1930’s. I almost expected Robin Hood and his men to come out of the dense stand of giant cedar and fir trees surrounding the open meadows where the events took place. The setting was fabulous and we had a wonderful afternoon soaking up Scottish lore and music. The wildlife story that interested me was on the tv news. A giant orca was tangled up in nets and fishing line and could barely swim. Somehow a boat filled with conservationists got near it and managed to untangle the line and set the big whale free. Almost immediately the huge orca surfaced and breached over and over again to show the men he was free and happy to be alive and full of joy and energy. It was a beautiful sight to see. Lots of changes in the Skywatch in July – read ahead and put a red X in your calendar on August 1 which is easily the most difficult day of the year in the Skywatch – details next month.
Caution lights. This month could mark a turning point in your life in some way. The Skywatch is unsettled, to say the least. Mars continues to Retrograde and will not return to direct motion until Aug 27. Mercury begins to Retrograde on July 26 adding another note of complexity to this month’s astrological weather. Having two personal planets Retrograde at the same time creates a critical period as backfires from mistakes made in this time-period are exacerbated by the two Rx cycles. This is when some folks will say and do things they wish they hadn’t. And Fools will surface. Yes, yes, yes.
One less problem in the Skywatch is that Jupiter resumes direct motion on July 10. The planet of expansion has been Retrograde since March 8 diluting our power to grow and expand in the last few months. Not likely you’ll feel this one with Mercury and Mars both backing up now. Again…this is a good time to be planning and building something to start after Mars goes direct Aug 27—especially since Jupiter will be direct then and powerful—ready to charge up your energy and make good things happen at the same time—this is money in the bank as far as good timing goes.
Friends, May 11, 2018
What a difference two weeks makes here in Birch Bay, Washington. The Sun is out today and likely will hit 80+ this weekend. And everything is growing and making our back road runs so lovely. The forest is now green, green, GREEN – every branch and tree is covered with new growth in every shade of green. The raspberry vines have a bright collar of new leaves when they were naked sticks just two weeks ago. Farmers have already cut the hay in their alfalfa fields and if they haven’t the pastures are feeding large herds of black and white Holstein cattle who graze and then sleep in the sweet meadows. Hydrangeas are in full bloom all over – pink and blue blossoms so bright you can see them in many front yards from way down the road. My favorite flowering bushes are the bright RED rhododendrons – the color is so intense you almost have to blink when you see one. Leslie has planted flowers front and back. We just need a little color, she says. And she delivers. Blue, white, red, yellow and purple faces fill the front flower bed and big pots she has planted out on the back porch. The snapdragons in front are just about ready to explode in color. And our Lilac bush is starting to put out lovely blue flowers and a wonderful scent. It’s fun just to drive through the neighborhoods to see all the flowers and beauty in so many front yards of the houses here. We adventured to check out the Anacortes farmers market last week. This city is only an hour and a half drive south and is the main ferry terminal to go explore the San Juan islands. We didn’t stay long in the farmers market as the drum group there was pounding way too loud for me and it ruined the ambiance of checking out veggies and local wares. However, we found the city of Anacortes to be a great find. 1891 was the date on one building there and that’s when the city was founded. It’s a real downtown with lots of shops and activity. It’s the same story with Bellingham, our nearest big city. These old downtowns are still vibrant and great places to shop and eat – so different from Texas where most of the small towns are empty shells. For certain we’ll go back to Anacortes and check out a great Mexican spot our friends recommended. And of course, it’s picnic weather and we’ve been to the local park to celebrate. Just five minutes from our house is Birch Bay Park. It’s an incredible strip of land right on the bay with a free-flowing stream on the backside and a huge wall of towering trees on the other side of the stream creating a dark green backdrop. Across the blue water we see the snow-capped Cascades and the San Juan islands in the distance. Cooking hot dogs in the fire pits made a fabulous lunch as we watched folks digging for clams out on the wide beach that’s exposed at low tide. The parks here are clean, kept up and totally worth the 30 bucks a year you pay for a park pass – that was the first thing I bought when we moved here and I found this wonderful park so close to our house. May 19, 1948, 10:20 am, Dallas, Texas. That’s my birth data that one reader wanted to see. If you are good with addition you know I am turning 70 this month. How this happened I still don’t know, but I am so glad to be here with dear Leslie, the forest and the flowers, and my work – it’s what keeps me going. And I want to thank you for your support that makes it possible to keep Skywatch in print. Leslie does want you to check your mailing label to note your expiration date – so you don’t miss the next issue. And times are changing as you will read. We have a rare double Retrograde of Mars and Mercury at the same time up ahead. Best then to get things moving in your life in June before this delay period begins. We both send you best wishes and love from the Great Northwest.
Heads up! We have a lovely string of kisses and lots of good days to boogie in the first three weeks of June—get as much as possible done then; because two different planets are about to turn Retrograde which will complicate your plans and delay forward motion in the weeks ahead. The main event is the beginning of Mars Retrograde on June 26. Just like an old light switch in the cellar—sometimes it works, and the lights come on…and sometimes it doesn’t—your energy level will rise and fall as Mars continues to back up on the bases until August 27.
Mars begins this Rx cycle in air sign Aquarius, but he finishes in earth sign Capricorn. Put two signs together: the new ideas of Aquarius need to pass the practical test of Capricorn at the end to be valuable. This can be a critical time in the lives of two signs as Mars rules Aries and co-rules Scorpio. Often old matters resurface as Rx cycles tend to bring back people and conditions of the past. Whether it’s trouble or a windfall depends on how these planets fit into your birth chart and whether they agree with your planets or challenge them.
Additions: Neptune turns Retrograde on June 18. It’s not as difficult a five-month cycle as the personal planets, but he does throw up a cloud bank in the house he occupies in your birth chart. The positive part of this Rx cycle increases our ability to imagine and create from our own wellspring of talent. And we all have some.
Friends, April 9, 2018
I dumped three inches of Winter from the rain gauge last week and looking out this morning I see that there is now another inch of rain in the cylinder. Hard winters across the country this year means cloudy days and rain in western Washington. Temperatures are very mild, in the 40-50’s. Today we get lucky and hit 66 which feels fabulous, and we’ll take PBJ sandwiches and grapes to the Peace Portal Park and enjoy the flowers and ocean view. And when it rains, we are still in Disneyland - but now the “Big Bud” is on. Naked raspberry vines have a light green scattering of new leaves. Daffodils are all over, even volunteers on the verges of I-5! Our maple trees have green buds the size of your little finger. And we saw on tv news the tulips are out and fabulous. Suspect we’ll be there soon. I missed seeing a strange event last month. Mt. Baker belched a big blast of gas and steam visible down here in the lowlands, as they call our area. This is a frequent occurrence they say and reminds us that this huge, cupcake snow cone mountain that’s only 30 miles away is an active volcano. “Added value” is how Leslie describes this local mountain when driving down Bakerview Road (they aren’t kidding) and this inspiring snow covered upside down cupcake fills half of your windshield. Being an active volcano, the state agency is going to drill five deep wells nearby looking for a source of geothermal energy to make electricity. The local university is involved, too. The topper here is flowering cherry trees all over town. It’s weird to me that folks in a sturdy evergreen world would plant flimsy but beautiful flowering cherry trees. They love flowers here, and the nurseries are back open with new faces and colors. Leslie has the front flower bed in good order waiting for warmer days. In other places we lived, temperatures rising brought Spring. Here, it’s the increasing daylight that generates new leaves on the berry vines because the temps have remained constant over the last three months, but now we get 13 hours of daylight, and it will grow to 16 hours mid Summer – a big reason things grow so well here. So, Spring here is a little sneaky. And we were surprised. All of a sudden abundant dandelions sparkled on green lawns while apple trees are beginning to bloom as we cruise down the back roads. We check them all out and so enjoy the drive through the open fields, farms, ranches, orchards, dairies, dark forested stretches and magnificent estates perched high on the hill. Lots to see on every road and then more when you go back the other way and see the other side of the street. Two farms we spotted on the back roads make artisan cheeses with the milk from their cows, and it’s about as pure as you can get. Local healthy stuff is always available here – the public demands it. I was unaware of the Orca pods that return to the Puget Sound each year – amazing animals and in recent decline. So the Gov passed a law to do things to protect them and to help increase their numbers. I want to give you the words of the Suquamish tribe Chairman who testified to the commission writing the law: “The orca whales are vital to our culture and spirituality as we are the first people on Puget Sound. They act as sentinels, observing our behavior and its impact on the health of these waters. They bless us with their presence and depend on us to keep our sacred pact with the Creator to care for this beautiful land.” Reading this makes me cry. The passage of the Orca bill does highlight the fact that environmental concerns are top shelf here. And I also like that we get to hear from all the tribes and get their point of view. We should all be listening.
There’s a little magic in the air this month. You’ll have to reach for it and be tuned in to really benefit. Dreams may show you something important to consider or understand, and your hunches are more likely to be on target in May. All due to expansive Jupiter making a trine to psychic and spiritual Neptune on May 25. Neptune fuels the creative and imaginative elements in our psyche and can inspire artists in all fields to produce a masterpiece. This trine also sets up a stellar month for spiritual studies and retreats.
This is a good month to set your intention and to work for something positive in your life to develop over the next three months as this trine reforms and powers up in mid-August when again “dreams can come true.” Small victories at this time can give lifetime benefit.
Add dancing, swimming and all water sports including fishing to the positive list—Pisces ruled, too.
A major change in the Skywatch this month is rebellious and unpredictable Uranus entering Taurus, the money sign. This last happened around 84 years ago and suggests changes in our financial systems and changes in what we value. This new era will last seven years and suggests that a lot of money will be made by investors in the tech field as everything electrical is ruled by Uranus, Stocks of high tech outfits will be good stocks to own over the next seven years is my bet.