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Oma and Grandalf

When I was a little girl, there were two women who were large in my life although I never had the pleasure to meet them in person. These women, my Omas, lived far across the world from me. I was born and raised in Australia, and my grandmothers lived in Germany. Even though they weren’t part of my daily life, and I never got to sit on their knees or hear their stories, they were every bit as present in my heart as other family members.

My Oma Minna (my father’s mother) would crochet me dresses. Oh the delight to open those parcels. She did this for years on end.

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Oma Minna Marie Herbers, 1929

When I was of writing age, I would exchange letters with my Oma Leiselotta. I was about ten or eleven when she died, and that was the first time I ever saw my mother cry. My heart broke that I would never get to meet her.

I keep their photos nearby, and often ‘chat’ with them in the spirit world. I have a kitchen oven hand protector that Oma Leiselotta once crocheted. It’s a simple thing, but it means the world to me, and has survived moving countries a number of times. Even at those times when I have whittled my whole life down to a suitcase or two, that yellow item of Oma-love comes with me.

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Perhaps it’s because I didn’t have my Omas in my childhood the way other children have grandmothers, and perhaps it’s because my daughters haven’t seen their Oma since 2005 (she lives in Tasmania, Australia), that I feel even more strongly about wanting to be a living, loving and generous presence in my new granddaughter’s life.

 

It was such a joy for me to meet our little Sarah Hope a few days ago. What a treasure! I am so in love with her. Throughout Beth’s pregnancy with her, Sarah would visit me in dreams. I remember one dream in particular where I was teaching her to say Oma, and she was repeating it after me.

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Kissing my beautiful new granddaughter, Sarah Hope, who was born on my husband’s birthday.

One of the first things women who are already grandmothers ask me is “what are you called? Granny, Nan, Nana, Nanny, Grandmother?” I proudly say: OMA. For as long as I can remember, it has felt such a special word to me, and I will wear that title with joy for the rest of my days on this earth.

(I treasure this little video clip of me meeting Sarah)

For anyone who knows my husband, Funny Boy Paul, you won’t be surprised to know that he isn’t going to have a regular Grandpa tag! He jokingly said one day that he could be Grandalf! (for those who aren’t familiar with Lord of the Rings, there is an old man in there called Gandalf). Anyway, the name stuck! So, here we are, at a new point in our lives (Eliza leaves home this week for Glasgow University). We’ve become grandparents to gorgeous Sarah, and we’re about to experience life without children in the home.

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Grandalf with his beautiful granddaughter, Sarah, born on his birthday: August 25th

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Paul and Sarah.

What adventures await Oma and Grandalf!

 

Paul Robinson. Veronika Robinson. Sarah Carlile

We love Sarah to bits! I could just kiss her all over! She’s so scrumptious.

 

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Our daughter Eliza getting to know her new niece, Sarah.

 

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My first role as Oma, apart from congratulating Beth and Chris on becoming parents, and giving kisses and cuddles to my beautiful new granddaughter, Sarah, was to make soups for my daughter’s freezer to sustain her through the Babymoon. A bit of edible mother love, so to speak.

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I made two huge pots of soup from my recipe book The Mystic Cookfire.

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Saturn Crossing the Ascendant (Astrologer’s Notebook)

When Saturn first kissed my ascendant, a few days before Christmas last year, my elder daughter and I were sitting in the car at the train station. She’d just got off the train from university, and wanted a chat with me before I drove her home for Christmas break.

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I wrote an article for Dell Horoscope magazine about my love of the planet Saturn.

 

 

I had been wondering for months, maybe longer, what Saturn crossing my ascendant would tell me. As a Capricorn, Saturn is strong in my natal chart. I was determined it would be a conscious transit, and not wipe me out. After all, I love Saturnian energy. By nature, I’m disciplined, focussed, determined, a planner, reliable, responsible and every other Saturnian word.

“I’m pregnant,” she said to me casually waiting to see my reaction.

I almost had to laugh at how literal Saturn’s message was. Saturn, the great marker of time and age, was slap bang on my ascendant (identity). So, I am going to become a grandmother. This was the most amazing news, and I was overjoyed!

I knew at some point Saturn would retrograde, and discovered it would come back to this exact point at the time my grandchild was due to come Earthside, and also at the time my younger daughter would leave home for university.

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Enjoying this last bit of time with Eliza before she leaves home for university.

 

So, my precious, beautiful, delightful, gorgeous granddaughter, Sarah Hope Carlile, has arrived Earthside. And what a joy! She also happened to arrive on my husband’s 68th birthday. Becoming a grandfather for the first time was a pretty awesome gift.

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Late at night on Paul’s birthday upon hearing the news that our granddaughter and niece had arrived Earthside. Oh the joy!!

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Sarah Hope

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Chris, Beth and Sarah

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A natural waterbirth makes Sarah a 2nd-generation waterbaby! In 1995, I set up the National Waterbirth Trust in New Zealand to help other women access information on birthing in water.

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And in nine days Eliza leaves for university, officially leaving me with ‘an empty nest’. Well, whoever came up with that term clearly has no idea that my life is anything but empty. But what is true is that Saturn crossing the threshold (over my ascendant), at the same time as my Chiron return (in my 5th house), is bringing change to who I am. I have invested twenty-one years of my life as a mother, for the most part in quite concentrated ways, such as home educating and publishing a holistic parenting publication for twelve years of that time span.

I may be a ‘young’ grandmother (48), but I plan to be a fit, healthy, happy and fab one.

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My first run after becoming an Oma (grandmother). I intend to be one fit grandmother to our beautiful Sarah. Thanks to Saturn on my Sagittarius ascendant right now, I am discovering the discipline that comes from using my legs (Sadge rules thighs/upper legs)

 

I have had many dreams of Sarah during her mother’s pregnancy, and if there is one thing I learned in that time, this little girl will have quite a sense of humour. Our synastry shows that our bond will be strong, despite the miles between us. I look forward to getting to know her, and watching her parents blossom as their family life unfolds.

Next week, I will wave off my other daughter as she flies the nest and explores this amazing thing called life.

The family home will always be open to my little chicks, but oh my how full my heart feels to watch them flying, flying, flying.

Saturn may be considered a karmic planet, but let us remember that karma isn’t ‘bad’. It is the story of what you sow, shall you reap.

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The Spider Grandmother: living the life of the red thread

In Native American myth, The Spider Grandmother (Spider Woman), created all life by spinning her web, and connected all living life together using her magical thread.

 

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The web that is woven in myth also symbolises how we weave a life for ourselves, and have the ability to always choose what and when to thread next; which way to weave, and, of course, how to weave. Spider woman teaches us that we are all connected.

As a celebrant, I have many red threads that I have been blessed to acquire over the years. The Blessingway ceremonies I officiate almost always feature the red-thread ritual. I have my old ones woven into old journals, and used as bookmarks. The miles may separate us, and the years may roll forward with increasing speed, but these women, with whom I once sat in sacred circle, remain connected with me through time and space.

The reason I choose red for the thread is because it is the colour of blood, and is what links all humans. During a Blessingway ceremony, the ball of hemp or wool is passed to the pregnant guest of honour who then wraps it around her wrist several times. She throws the ball across the circle to one of her guests. That woman also wraps it around her wrist several times before throwing it to someone else in the circle. This continues until everyone is linked into the web. This circle is a wonderful symbol of connection.

The guest of honour cuts the string each side of her wrist, and then cuts the string around the circle. Each guest wears the string until she hears the joyous news that the baby has been born.

Even after the string is cut, we recognise our connection: that we all still come from the same ball of yarn. Women of the medicine wheel sense this energetically, and really feel connected to the circle in the weeks to come, and for some of us, for years to come.

As I prepare to cross the threshold to becoming a grandmother (a beautiful expression of Saturn conjunct my ascendant, by transit), I am mindful of Spider Grandmother and the red thread. Around my wrist is a red thread with three beads. One to represent me: grandmother. One for my daughter: mother. And one for baby: child.

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Motherhood is written within each of us whether or not we are mothers, daughters, sisters or friends. Even if we have never given birth, the code of motherhood is within.

Seconds after giving birth at home, by candlelight and Mozart, to my daughter Bethany.

Seconds after giving birth at home, by candlelight and Mozart, to my daughter Bethany.

I call in my ancient mothers, now, those who’ve walked before me and birthed babies, to gather together in spirit and guide and protect my daughter as she transitions from maiden to mother. Birth is an experience that in our culture almost fully focuses on the physical, but is equally emotional, sexual, mental and spiritual. We are never more open in life than when we give birth. When we say ‘yes’ to this, the whole Universe rushes forward and claps!

I wait now for baby. Poised. Grateful. A heart filled with SO much love for this human being that once lived in my womb as an unfertilised egg. An egg of promise. An egg of beauty. An egg of wisdom.

An egg… that is waiting to tell a story.

 

Veronika Robinson is the author of many books, fiction and non-fiction, which honour the story of motherhood, including The Blessingway, Cycle to the Moon, and Sisters of the Silver Moon. She is also a celebrant and an astrologer.

www.veronikarobinson.com

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The Blessingway: creating a beautiful blessingway ceremony

The Blessingway: creating a beautiful blessingway ceremony

 

I CREATE MY DAY

 

I trust that your February has been rich with love and laughter. I wanted to share with you the news that my latest book is ready for publishing.

Discover the path of spiritual grace

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I Create My Day: simple ways to create a beautiful and nourishing life is a sacred journey into the heart of attitudinal healing, and invites you to create the life of your dreams one day at a time.

Regardless of how you currently experience the world, this book promises to show how you can create a magnificent life that is nourishing, beautiful and authentic.

At the heart of a handcrafted life is a spirit of reverence, gratitude and grace. By including the simple ideas in this book as part of your every day, you will witness your life unfold in ways that are miraculous, meaningful and, always, from the heart. Creating your day is one of the greatest spiritual decisions you can make.

If you would like a signed copy for yourself or a friend, I Create My Day is now available to pre-order from https://www.veronikarobinson.com/author/non-fiction.shtml

Non-signed copies will be available from Amazon and other online retailers, good bookshops and, as with all my books, you can ask your local library to stock copies as it is CIP registered.

 

Just call me Granny Pants!
In other news, I’m delighted to share that this summer Paul and I will become grandparents. I’m so looking forward to kissing little baby cheeks again!

 

Celebrate Your Creativity
We still have a few places left for anyone who is interested in joining us for our 5-day family camp in August. It’s being held at Limetree Nature Reserve in North Yorkshire. We’ve loved holding camps here in the past, this one’s theme is: celebrate your creativity. It’s £90 for an adult, and the fee includes camping, wholefood dinners and lunches by Rocket Catering, and all workshops/activities. Children 14 years and under, £35; 15-18 years £50.
You can secure your family’s place with a 20% deposit. This camp is a wonderful opportunity to spend time with lovely souls in the heart of a beautiful environment. Booking form/info here: https://www.veronikarobinson.com/creativity-camp/index.shtml

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Celebrating Life
For my Cumbrian readers, in case you’re unaware, I’ve been officiating ceremonies for 21 years. I am available throughout Cumbria, Northern Lancashire and Southern Scotland to officiate weddings, namings, funerals, vow renewals, and other rites of passage. https://www.veronikarobinson.com/celebrant/index.shtml

woodlandwedding5May your days roll gently, one after the other, filled with sunshine, love and joy. ~ Veronika x