Chicago Witch: Witchy Living in the Windy City

A perspective of a modern, urban Witch who strives to balance faith with family and career.

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Lori Dake

Lori Dake

Lori Dake is a life-long native several generations back , is a mom to an adult son and married for over fifteen years. She is a leasing agent primarily serving the North Side and has also worked as a paralegal for several years. Sometimes, she’s a hardcore fashionista, and sometimes a concert shirt and jeans are more her style. Hobbies include painting while listening to 80’s metal, writing, participating in various forms of philanthropy and creating fabulous meals on a budget.

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
All topics can be divisive

With all that has happened in the last week regarding the Ferguson indictment decision, a lot of back burner issues have come to the forefront and is now boiling over. Everyone has an opinion. Some folks are clearly staying out of it for numerous reasons, some are tap-dancing around the root causes and others are bluntly stating their positions. I'm sure you have your own thoughts on the matter at large, the repercussions, the back story and so on. Even those I know who do not involve themselves with "other people's drama" and never watch the news or read articles, unless something directly pertains to them, will eventually have an opinion.

It is why I find it interesting a Pagan news source has stated they will no longer cover divisive topics. It seems to me when you use the word "News" in your name, you are expected to provide all the news and not just cherry-pick which topics will keep things civil. Not only that, but really, if you have more than a handful of people commenting on any topic, you are going to get a discussion, and discussions come from personal viewpoints - many of which can be divisive due to being based on opinion. Here is my example:

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Lady Pythia
    Lady Pythia says #
    I posted this there...for Pagan reasons. Enjoy an article I've found enlightening and great to use with Students as Witches and P
  • Piper
    Piper says #
    Yes, good post and warning, somethings need to be discussed, hiding them will either validate them or let them come back and be wo
  • Martin
    Martin says #
    That's a good post; let's not wrap everything in cotton wool as it's stifling.

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
2014 Samhain Resolution

Samhain is sometimes called the Witches New Year, as it's considered the beginning of the dark half of the year. Back in the day, it was a time for the final harvest (animals) and bracing for the cold months ahead. I'm a city girl, so many of the ancient traditions just don't work with me. Bonfire? Not without driving out to the sticks and either renting a cabin or freezing to death in a tent. Slaughtering animals? Yeahhh... no. Jewel does a pretty good job of that, but we do thank the animals when we eat. Battoning down the hatches? Oh, do you mean like when the landlord sent guys over to replace our windows a couple of weeks ago? Does that count? Storing up food? I've got coupons and pantry for that! And yes, there's a first aid kit and a blanket in the trunk with at least a half tank of gas at all times, plus I have my AAA card, credit cards and some cash in my wallet. That's how I prepare for winter!

On the secular calendar, it's tradition for many people to make a New Year's resolution, which oftentimes fail miserably. Besides the fact many of the resolutions are impossibly vague in the sense the issue to resolve has no specifics in attaining them (e.g., "I'm going to lose weight!", "I'm going to quit smoking!" or even "I'm going to restart my life!"), many resolutions are made while tipsy and/or because it's the popular thing to do. Therefore, I believe a resolution made on a religious holiday holds more weight, simply because you're not just telling yourself and your friends what you're doing, you're making a promise to deities - you are oath-bound!

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Preparing for the Dark Half of the Year

As many of you know, my main form of financial security is renting apartments for landlords here in Chicago. It's really an exciting job, and it's one that does more than just pay the bills. At the same time, I'm helping people with a basic need: Shelter. (it's one of the Big Three I've heard; Food and Clothing being the other two.) Oftentimes, I show apartments while people are still living there, and it's always fun to learn new ways to decorate and make the best use of space. It also teaches me what not to do, based on my personal preferences.

Over the years, my husband Ron and I have played with all kinds of styles for our own brand of interior design, based on our budget, what we like and what makes sense. I know there's professionals out there, I'm working for one right now in fact, but at the end of the day, all of that advice means nothing if I don't like it and/or it doesn't serve its purpose. We have our own set of rules when it comes to interior design, which in many cases mimics the standards, but we do so with a Pagan eye for detail.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Deborah Blake
    Deborah Blake says #
    I try to do a lot of this--although I'm not as brave with paint colors as you are :-)
  • Lori Dake
    Lori Dake says #
    The trick with painting the walls is ... there is no trick. You just need to be happy! Think of your favorite colors, then think

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
You can't please everyone

Since my last 9-part article here on my experiences at Pagan Spirit Gathering, I've had a big change in my life. I can't talk about most of that - sorry. What I can say is I've gained some deeper insight on the Samhain resolution I made last year about being less judgmental. I will remind folks, I say less judgy, because we're all human, but just trying to honestly walk in someone's shoes is hard for so many people to do. And I say that with the inclusion of the Pagan community.

There are notable Pagans who have spent time with me in person, people of whom I've at least made an attempt to let them get to know me and of course vice versa, at the very least on some base level of agreement, who harshly judge me. These are people who won't give me the time of day. People who, on one hand shout to the hilltops we need to be accepting of everyone, who won't even acknowledge my presence unless they are forced to. And even then, they do so grudgingly and while being back-handedly polite. Does it hurt my feelings? At this point in my life, not really. In fact, I developed a mechanism to cope with not being able to be everyone's friend/acquaintance back when I was a kid. Allow me to explain:

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Shauna Aura Knight
    Shauna Aura Knight says #
    One thing that struck me in your post is that I had a similar childhood--rejected by my peers, emotionally (sometimes physically)
  • Lori Dake
    Lori Dake says #
    Shauna, I'm not talking about people who are just shy, or introverted, or even perhaps on the spectrum. What I'm specifically tal
  • Lori Dake
    Lori Dake says #
    Thank you for your thoughts. It's just something that's been grating on me for quite a while, and at this point in my life, I woul
  • guy fawkes
    guy fawkes says #
    you're definitely not alone in this experience. relational aggression is a serious problem in pagandom. one major contributing fac

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

(Horner Park in Chicago)

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My experience at Pagan Spirit Gathering 2014, Pt 9 of 9

...continued from Part 8

Sunday, June 22nd:

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