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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Family Beliefs and Traditions

Today I want to share with you some of my family beliefs and traditions. I encourage you to share your own as well.

Your Birthmark

We were told that your birthmark indicated what your father was doing when your mother went into labor. Family history dictates that when my own mother went into labor, my father was working on his car. Consequently, I was born with a birthmark about an inch above my belly button that resembled a car motor. And no I will not be showing it to you. When my grandmother went into labor with my aunt, my grandfather was hunting; when my aunt was born she had a deer-shaped birthmark on her thigh.

Speaking of belly buttons, we were told that our belly buttons were "where the indian poked you."

Found Pennies

It's pretty commonplace these days for a person finding a penny on heads to pick it up and carry it on themselves for "good luck." I was always told that these found pennies were fleeting charms and last only for 24 hours from the time that you originally found the penny. To me, finding pennies on heads are always a sign from the universe that any chances I take will pay off. Of course, the bigger the risk, the greater the reward.

In the case of spotting a penny that lies 'tails' up, I always simply turn it over and leave it where I found it for another person to reap it's luck giving powers.


I was raised by my grandparents who are now in their 80's and who grew up in the country. Therefore, we were privy to a great number of omens, some of which may be quite familiar to you as well. For example:

  • If the sun sets behind a cloud it will rain.
  • If a bird flies in the house, it means death.
  • To hear frogs croaking in the evening means rain.
  • What you do on New Year's day you'll be doing all year.
  • Bubbles in your coffee means money coming.
  • An itching foot means you'll walk where you aren't welcome.
  • Ringing ears means someone is talking about you.
  • Itching palms means money coming your way.
  • Sweep over someone's feet and they'll never get married.

At the table

Us kids always gathered at the table to watch mama cook biscuits. It was amazing to watch her mix all the ingredients without a measuring cup and then shape the little biscuits by hands without a cutter. If we were good she's give us a little bit of the raw dough to eat as a treat and she's always make one or two 'baby' biscuits for us kids. I swear I believe sometimes she made biscuits just so we'd be quiet for a little bit. When Kaleb came into my life, I was happy to pass this tradition down to him.

The Gift of Magic

When I showed an interest in witchcraft and magic, my grandparents didn't try to stop me. I earned my own money doing things in the neighborhood (yard work, picking up prescriptions/buying a loaf of bread for a neighbor, etc..) and I had the right to do what I wanted with my own money. They never really talked about magic or witchcraft except that one time I remember my grandmother saying that witches were 'the daughters of satan).

However, I always suspected that I wasn't the first witch in our family. I clearly remember once when my grandma took us kids out to the country to visit the house she grew up in, she showed us kids how she could talk to spiders. She told us that when she was little and her dad would send her to search for one of the cows that had wandered off, she's look for a spider and ask it which way the cow went. and the spider would point. We didn't believe her, so she had us find a spider. When we did she asked the spider which way {another person} went, and I'll be damned if it didn't point in the right direction.

So remember kids, when your lost find a spider and it will point the way for you.

Carolina Dean

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