I Performed a Ritual

Hey there, friends, I’m dropping in to say hello! I survived my crazy week and am now operating at my acceptable level of stress. It was a great time, but I didn’t get to talk about my ritual two weekends ago!

A few days ago, somebody asked me to address ritual magic and how I interpret it. I will give my opinion, but I’d like to take the time to mind everybody that, while I am an Active Member of the Church of Satan, I do not speak for the Church of Satan or any of its other members.

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My Ritual Outfit

So, my friend Colby and I set up everything at his house, but we had to make a few changes to the ritual due to the fact that fire is a danger we were unwilling to risk. Instead, we used water. The necessary candles were used, we just didn’t feel comfortable burning anything in his basement.

I recited the proper words and we went through compassion, destruction, and lust, as we had discussed before going into the chamber. I don’t know why he needed to ritualize, nor did he know my intentions, but I knew enough to formulate a ritual around our needs.

I don’t want to go very far into what the ritual actually looked like, as it is depicted on the Church of Satan’s Youtube, as well in The Satanic Bible. There were candles, robes, music by my boy Hexenkraft, bells, and everything else that goes along with entering the ritual chamber. I will, though, talk about how it made me feel and how I use Ritual Magic.

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When I perform a ritual, it’s because I have done everything in the physical world I could possible do to influence my desired outcome. If I, let’s say, had my eye on a guy who I wanted to go out with, I would have used every trick in The Satanic Witch, bringing out the big Lesser Magic “guns” each time I have the opportunity, in order to draw him to me. If I have done all that I, myself, can do, I might decide to perform a ritual. This is a way to take all my strong, emotional, powerful feelings and throw them from my body, towards the object of the ritual, and use that power to also help in reaching my desires.

It also clears my mind, taking a weight off my shoulders, because I feel as though I really have done EVERYTHING. I have covered all of my bases and there would be no reason to stress anymore, meaning that I can move on and put my energy into other creative or professional endeavors. My energy is wasted on worrying about that which I can’t control, and my energy is my power. I don’t want to waste it.

So, after my ritual, I felt lighter than air. I felt dark and powerful and that I could have moved a mountain with just a glance. It was a wonderful, electric feeling that I took with me the rest of the night out with my friends, and man did I have a good time!

That is what ritual means to me, so it might be different for other Satanists. Just like people, no two rituals are the same and asking Reverend Campbell would probably have a different answer than me, so I recommend asking others and, even better, doing your own! There’s no better way to experience a ritual than just doing on yourself.

I hope you liked this little entry and if you have any questions or comments you can email me or comment below and I’ll check them out. Be sure to check out my Youtube videos where I sometimes post instead of on here and follow me on Twitter if you want to really know what’s going on in my brain.

I’ll see you on the other side, my friends.

HS!

LH

I Celebrate Little Victories

When people think of Washington State, they think of mountains, evergreen trees, and rain. While all of these things are true, Washington has a dark side. We are the state with the highest rates of suicide and depression. Rates of diagnosis for depression are on the rise, here, too. Most of these come from Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD, which is another name for Seasonal Depression, and describes a time every year that depression arises.

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I love living in Washington State. It’s full of color and beauty in ways you’ll never see in other states. We have desert, rainforest, plains, mountains, and pretty much every biome of which you can think. Last summer, I had breakfast by a river; lunch by a glacier lake; and a sunset dinner on the beach with my toes in the sand. It’s an amazing places to live, but can be trying.

My family is riddled with Clinical Depression, also known as Major Depression. It’s different from Seasonal Depression because it is constant and, while we have good days, it isn’t something that goes away for the majority of the year. Winter and fall do make clinical depression worse for us, though, so there are elements of SAD in that I can handle it most of the year. Then the sun goes away. That’s the biggest issue is that the sun goes away, so I try to take vitamin D3 and eat better (besides the holidays), but it still happens.

There are days where I can function perfectly, but all I can think about is hanging myself. Don’t freak, don’t panic. I don’t need sympathy, I’m just trying to put what I’m trying to say in perspective. I want you to know where my mind is.

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The days when I can function perfectly normally an still think about suicide on repeat are considered good days. Bad days are very bad. Bad days may mean I don’t feed myself because a small part of my mind hopes I’ll just starve. It may mean I won’t talk to anybody for weeks, if I can. My anxiety makes it worse, too, by causing me to throw up when I’m stressed so I wake up to a really bad day and I begin to lose weight.

So I have Little Victories. Small things I can do each day to make myself feel less like a failure. Posting here can be a little victory sometimes. Sometimes they’re even smaller, like getting out of bed, doing my makeup, taking a damn shower. Now, I don’t text my mom each time like, “MAMA I AATE TODAY!”. No. But it helps ME get up and actually accomplish the shit I need to get out and do.

I hope that makes sense. Little, personal victories to keep you going are very healthy if you have a mental illness. As somebody with Depression, anxiety, and PTSD, my victories are sometimes very small. I’m not trying to whine or get attention or anything, I just want somebody, anybody, to feel a little better and that they’re not alone.

I hope you all keep yourself well this upcoming rainy season.

HS!

LH

 

I’d like to say Thank You

For those who don’t know, today is the day in history in which Anton LaVey shuffled off this mortal coil in 1997, but that’s not what I’m here for really focus on. Instead, I’d like to say thank you.

Something that really amazes me is that LaVey created Satanism and was able to pull me into a religion 20 years after his death! (I joined last year). Talk about some strong lesser magic. I remember looking through the various pages on the Church of Satan site and being entranced by the pictures of LaVey in these dark, interesting photos, surrounded by imagery that many would call “creepy”.

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Photo Credit: Church of Satan Archives 

Well, I thought they were damn cool! I was drawn further into the Church of Satan because this man was presenting himself as confident, dark, and creative, which was something I saw in myself as well. I wanted to know more.

I realize now that this is the second layer of defense that LaVey had against those he didn’t want in the Church of Satan, the first being the name. If you can hear that title, see the Satanic imagery and still want to learn more, then you might be a Satanist. Probably not, but maybe. Once you allow yourself to sink into the darkness and have fun with it, you can get down into the beliefs into the Church of Satan, which are nothing more than (seemingly) obvious.

Some people say that they find themselves within a religion and I just gotta say, that’s total bullshit. I didn’t find myself within The Satanic Bible, but I saw me. I saw LaVey sitting down with a glass of red wine, creating a religion for himself that was able to reach past his death, 20 years into the future, and touch me. I didn’t need a name for how I was living my life, because I was always going to be living in a Satanic manner, but I had the name Satanism because of Anton LaVey.

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Photo Credit: Church of Satan Archives

I saw those people around me worshipping an idea that never seemed to actually do anything but was still given all the credit and that pissed me off. I saw people harming others and forcing their ideas onto others in the name of this idea and that pissed me off. LaVey saw this, too, and created something else. I am the god that must be worshipped. I am the god that can change tides and move mountains and I WILL be given credit where credit is due.

So, thank you Dr. LaVey, for seeing clearly. Thank you for taking what I was feeling my whole life and putting it to paper, decades before I was a glimmer in my mama’s eye. Thank you for being unapologetic about who you were and what you enjoyed. Thank you for creating The Satanic Bible and the Church of Satan so that I might eventually wander through its proverbial doors and discover I was already there, leafing through the pages.

There are various hats I wear in various times in my life. Downtown Party Lauren isn’t the same as Teaching Children Lauren isn’t the same as Lighting Designer Lauren, but one thing I always keep with me is the words written by Anton LaVey, as the teachings of Satanism, the ones I felt but never had the words for, will always inform my decisions.

So, thank you to Anton LaVey, and also to the rest of the founding members that have taken up the torch since LaVey passed. It is because of them that young folks, like me, were able to finally have the word to describe who we are: Satanist.

Have a wonderful rest of your Monday, my Darling Devils, and I’ll see you tomorrow.

Hail Anton LaVey!

HS!

LH

I Hate Nazis

I can’t believe I have to say this. Honestly, I haven’t had anybody say that I am connected to Nazis since my school years when kids would make fun of my extremely german last name. Back then I would just laugh at them for being unoriginal and shrug it off. I knew the kids didn’t think I was hateful or a murderer.

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A few weeks ago I was poking around on Twitter when I saw that somebody was making comments on my friend Sophie’s tweet, trying to say that the Church of Satan and its members were Nazis. It was really pissing me off because I am not a nazi. I am a Democrat and also not a monster.

Now, the Holocaust is interesting in a “peek into the mind of a maniac” sort of way, but the acts committed by Nazis and in the name of Hitler were astoundingly cruel and horrific. That makes me a student of history, not a Nazi.

But this person decided to go on and say that since the Church of Satan may contain members with Nazi sympathies, it is a Nazi organization. Um, no, that’s not how anything works. If we were to apply the same logic to everything else, the world would fall apart. Organizations all over the world have members that may have ideas or values that the organization doesn’t share.

An example: Most Nazis are Christian but Christians would take offense if you were to say that being Christian makes them a Nazi because they don’t kick the Nazis out of Christianity. An easier example: A square is a rectangle but not every rectangle is a square.

I am a very firm believer that people should be able to make their own choices in life. This may be because I had an abusive stepdad who wanted to control me and my mother and due to him, I put a lot of value in freedom. I dye my hair different colors because I don’t want to be constrained to black, brown, or blonde. Sometimes that means living in a world where I disagree with others.

Now, does that mean I would condone the banning of non-halal foods because Muslims decided that they don’t want them on the shelves anymore? No. Just like I don’t agree with Nazis that white people are the master race or whatever. I think that’s a disgusting ideal and I’m horrified anybody would compare me to a Nazi.

Maybe there are Nazis in the Church of Satan, I don’t know, because I am not responsible for who the Church of Satan decides to allow into their ranks. Nor do I have the power to kick Nazis out of the Church of Satan. If low-level members like me had that power, I’m sure the Nazis would have used it by now.

The members of the Church of Satan are not one hive mind. Sure, there are some values that we share such as The Eleven Satanic Rules of the Earth and The Nine Satanic Statements, but they mean something different to each individual Satanist. If you were to ask Reverend Campbell to interpret the Seventh Satanic Rule of the Earth and then asked Citizen Nero to do the same, their answers would probably be different.

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Humans consume the world through different filters. These can be race, religion, socioeconomic status, childhood experience, privet vs public school, city vs farm living, and so much more. Because of these lenses, information is processed differently from person to person and no two people’s experiences can be the same. To say that all Satanists are one thing because you saw one Satanist do the thing is a sign of a small mind.

So, what can I do if I don’t want to be labeled a Nazi? The guy who prompted this post said that I am appeasing the Nazis because I’m not doing anything to get them out of my Church. That is if there even are any because I really haven’t looked into it. That’s not a productive way to spend my energy.

Well, I’m a teacher and I am using that influential position to make a better future. I am introducing them to plays and scripts that make them think and challenge their world view. We learn about the ways theatre was shaped in different regions of the world and how culture is a huge part of putting on a production. I am working on creating a world where Nazis can’t exist.

Reverend Campbell posted a video today where he discusses The Satanic Warlock of the Year award and what he is looking for in candidates. One thing that was on my mind a lot today was looking at what you’ve done in the real world and not within the world of Satanism. I really recommend watching the video because he’s spot on. I’m not just trying to drive Nazis out of the Church of Satan, I’m trying to drive that sort of thinking out of the entire world. To focus on JUST changing the little Satanic bubble you live in would be short-sited. I am focused on much larger prizes.

So go change the world, my Sweet Satanists, whatever that means to you.

HS!

LH

I’m Afraid

Life is scary. There are a lot of ways to get hurt and killed out there, and we are more aware of that these days than ever before due to how quickly information can spread. Every day I look at my Twitter feed and see numerous headlines such as “Texas water resort closed, tested for ‘brain-eating amoeba’ after man’s death“, “Facebook just had its worse hack ever — and it could get worse“, and “Seven parked cars set on fire in Redmond” and my brain instantly goes “well, what would we do if that happened?”. Well, I don’t know, but maybe I should know.

My day is filled with dangers. I could slip in fall in the shower or just be straight up murdered in my sleep. Every day I drive 45 minutes to and from work, either on the freeway or the nerve-wracking Chuckanut Drive. It’s a wonderfully beautiful area

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From the Oyster Bar on Chuckanut Drive

right edge of the Puget Sound and surrounded by forests, but the road has a lot of twists and turns. The lanes are very small and the road follows a steep cliff, which makes passing large trucks very scary.

The best part is that my car is one of the deadliest to drive these days. To be fair, I’m looking to buy a new one soon but I really needed a new mattress. I know that doesn’t seem as important as a new car, but you should have slept on my old mattress.

Back to danger. So, I work at a school and that makes me nervous due to the school shootings that have occurred. I worry about keeping my students safe and what we would do if something were to happen. I have a plan, but I worry anyway.

If I go out, I could be drugged (that’s happened twice to me), I could get hit by a drunk driver, I could be raped or murdered for denying a man, or sold into the illegal sex trade.

When I’m in the theatre, I could fall from the ladder, lift, or catwalk, which range from 10 feet up to 60 feet up, depending on the location. I could start a fire and die

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From McIntyre Hall. This is one of the theatres I work in. See the catwalk above the house?

from that in various ways. I could be electrocuted. I could get hit by something coming in from the fly system. Also you can just be murdered anywhere, so just add that mentally from now on.

There are many, many diseases all over the world that could destroy my life and leave me in agony for my raining days. There are animals that can sting you, bite you, poison you, paralyze you, brutalize your body and/or murder you. I’m looking at you, Australia.

My greatest fear in the world is dying before my mother followed closely by getting in a violent car accident and burning alive. My phobias are spiders, bees, and clowns/mascots.

The thing is, I still drive to work every day to teach children. I still go 60 feet up onto the catwalk in the theatre and lean five feet out to gel a lamp. I still want to travel and eat new foods! There’s too much to do and see for me to say, but my bucket list is long. There’s a lot I’ve already done, too, like driving across country in 18-wheelers and performing in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

I live my life aware of the possible hazards and I think about what I would do in situations, but I don’t live my life as if it will happen every time I step out of the house. That’s no way to enjoy what the universe has to offer.

Go for a drive down Chuckanut if you’re ever in Bellingham, but pay attention to the road and wear your seatbelt. Have a belt-cutter and a way to break your window in case you crash into the water. If you’re prepared, you’ll be okay.

Case in point: Last winter my boyfriend and I were driving home from a party in Seattle. It was really, really snowy and he’s driving slower, but we came to a big hill on I-5 (just past the Starboard road exit if you’re familiar) and at the bottom, I felt the car start to slip. Dylan started to panic a little and I watched the trees and the lights of oncoming traffic as we spun towards the median. He was trying to correct

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and hit the break, so I very calmly said to take his foot off the break and keep his hands still. Eventually, we came to a stop facing traffic, though it was really far up the road. After a breath, we continued. This time, much slower. We passed other cars that night that had spun out. Some had gone into the trees, others into guard rails or just straight off the road. When we made it home, I almost cried.

My point here is that I was able to be calm because I was prepared. I wasn’t afraid, even as it was happening. I distinctly remember feeling a crisp, chilly weight in my stomach and feeling very even. I was the calm within the storm and we didn’t go off the road.

So, what I’m trying to say is to go out and live your life, just be prepared.

Okay, off to school. I’ll talk to you later, my Darling Devils.

HS!

LH

 

I Love Horror Movies

Oh my goodness, do I love myself some horror movies. They’ve been an important part of my life ever since I was a little girl and my Dad showed me Scream, which Mom wasn’t super happy about. Though Ghost Face still scares me to this day, as does the girl from The Grudge, I watch a horror at least once a week with my boyfriend. He actually has a blog, Jurassic Massacre 3, that reviews and delves into various movies that fall into horror/thriller genres.

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All that being said, I’ve seen a few horror movies in my time and I thought I’d share with you some of my favorites and why I love them. I meant to have this posted yesterday, but I found it too hard to pick just 10. It’s time for:

Lauren’s Top Ten Horror Movies*

* For now

10) Scream (1996)

As I said before, this was the first Horror movie I ever remember watching and it still scares the crap out of me. I think that’s because I saw it when I was so young. I, now, appreciate it for what it is: A scary movie that pokes fun at scary movies while still, purposefully, falling into those tropes. It’s a fun film that you don’t have to take seriously but still manages to scare. I like to watch this one a lot during Halloween Month (October) as it puts me in a spooky mood and allows me to hide from the rain.

9) The Grudge (2004)

J-Horror scares the crap out of me because of the types of spirits depicted and their use of atmosphere to creep out the audience instead of falling back onto the jump scare. This movie gets me more than any other in the genre because of the damn sound the woman makes. That long, choked inhale will stick with me through the night and I’ll end up scaring myself more than the movie scared me as I imagine where she might be hiding.

8) The Thing (1982)

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The most impressive part of this movie is the practical effects. I have a deep love for practicals because they just look so much better on-screen and age better than CGI and others. I come from the theatre community and we don’t get the luxury of adding or taking away whatever we want in Post because it’s all, obviously, live! That means we have to work extra hard to trick audiences into believing whatever world we are creating. If theatre can, movies can. The Thing is a prime example of what a movie can look like when practical effects are used. The 2011 version is the opposite.

7) Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 (1986)

Now, don’t come at me saying the original is also better. Trust me, I know the argument. I like this one more because it has more replay value, to use video game terms. There’s a bit of humor, some amazing set pieces, and gore that will make your stomach try to escape your body. This is also a great example of a movie not treating its audience like children as there’s very little explanation as to what’s going on or who we should care about. Well, other than the text scrolling in the beginning but I let that slide because it was in the original.

6) Sinister (2012)

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Damn, what a creepy movie. As I have said before, I’m not a huge fan of jump scares because I think they’re a cheap way to scare people and this movie has very few of them. Every detail of the movie is designed to make you feel off. The entire movie takes place in the house (until the end) in order to make you feel claustrophobic; the movie is generally quiet and the music to enhance the terror, not be the scare. I really like the use of color and darkness, too, as everything seems to have a grey wash to it and there are times when the lack of light makes the viewer feel closed in upon.

5) 1408 (2007)

This movie has a crappy rating on Rotten Tomatoes for some reason but I really like it! Basically, it’s John Cusack v An Evil Room. The effects didn’t age well and there are parts that seem a little silly, but I really love the concept presented as well as how they are executed. This movie is also able to make you really sad as you follow the main character through the torture he endures within the room. What’s really cool about this movie is that the set never gets boring, even though the action mostly takes place within the room.

4) Cabin in the Woods (2012)

Alright, I know I already put a horror/comedy making fun of horror movies on this list but I don’t care what you say because this movie his amazing. I really love the overall concept of this movie and if you haven’t seen it, go give it a watch, especially if you’re a horror fan. This movie tips its hat to the horror movies that have come before while also screaming for change. There are also characters worth rooting for and a bunch of tiny details that show just how much thought went into the script. Well, except the eagle part.

3) As Above, So Below (2014)

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So, this movie made me nervous at first because it is shot like a documentary and I was worried I was going to be thrown into shaky-cam hell, which, other than a short piece at the start, I wasn’t! The movie takes place in the catacombs under Paris, which is actually where they filmed a majority of the scenes, so the production value of this movie is astounding. The real human bones in each shot, combined with knowing they are far underground, adds to the feeling of being trapped. Basically, these people are looking for the Philosopher’s Stone and get trapped and have to go through Hell to get out. “The only way out is down”.

2) Night of the Living Dead (1968)

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My grandma and I used to have something called Crappy Movie Night when I was young. We would go the used book store and get an old horror movie. This is how I saw Night of the Living Dead and instantly fell in love. This was great! The zombies weren’t scary alone but as they grew in numbers, the living inside become the real threat. Man, it’s a great film! I loved zombies ever since then and still plan different ZA escapes depending on where I am. Plus I love sad endings. The best part about this movie? I got to meet Barbra.

1) Tusk (2014)

This is the best horror movie ever made. I watched it for the 7thtime last night and I noticed two more details that I hadn’t seen before. I really don’t want to spoil this movie so I’m just going to tell you what it does correctly. First of all, it’s a great idea. There’s something believable about the plot, even though it seems insane. You, as a viewer, feel the pain of the main character on physical and emotional levels and it’s impactful because the movie takes the time to round out its characters. Second, the camera work is perfection. The angles, frames, and close-ups aren’t frivolous and tell you exactly what’s going on and who’s in charge… if you pay attention. Third, IT’S SO FUCKED UP. This is my favorite movie.

Here’s all you need to know: Justin Long gets turned into a walrus.

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That’s all for now, folks! Please, take a few hours and watch one of these (Tusk) and let me (Tusk) know what (Tusk) you (Tusk) think (Tusk).

HS!

LH

(Tusk)

I Worship Beauty

I walk a lot. I like to take a route that goes from my house to downtown to the ferry docks and back. There’s a long trail that goes through two parks and the whole trek is probably about 4 miles. I try to do this walk whenever I can because not only is it good for my body but it is beautiful. I get to see the various people and buildings downtown and the brick and older folk that hangout in the Fairhaven area. I also get to walk through the forest and along the Puget Sound, where I’ll sometimes see various animals such as seals and ducks playing in the water. It’s a beautiful walk and I greatly enjoy my time. (Also, my butt looks great).

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Not from last night, but still from my route

Last night’s walk was particularly wonderful for a few reasons. For one, the weather wasn’t super hot, though it was a little muggy, but the clouds were back and there was a light rain, so it wasn’t too bad. At one point, it did start raining a little harder, though this was a great mishap as I was able to get an espresso poured over Oreo gelato and it was AMAZING! I also had to wait on two long trains, which was not amazing, but that’s okay.

A few times, I would stop on my walk and just look around at all the wonderful beauty around me. Normally, I walk while listening to music, but when I take my little moments, I pause the sound and listen to whatever there is to hear. Sometimes, its conversation. Other times, all I hear are the sounds of The Sound; waves shush against the beach rocks, gulls and ducks chatter and dip under the water, and the wind whispers damp, salty air through my hair.

It was lovely. Well, until some damn woman came up and started talking to me. She wanted to point out the river otters that were playing just off shore, which I had been looking at, and comment on the general beauty of the scene. I agreed with her. The sun was setting and streaming through small breaks in the clouds onto the calm Puget Sound waters. In some places, the pink light caught the shadow of rain falling in the distance, dyeing it.

The woman then signed deeply and said “God is great” and, since this was a stranger, I simply nodded in agreement. I understood what she meant and I also didn’t want to get into an argument with a stranger on a dock. What she saw was a scene made for her by a creator who she called God. She thought she was seeing His hand in the waves, the hills, the birds, the light. She thought that she was seeing God through nature.

In the end, we agreed. What she was trying to say to me was that she thought what we were seeing together was breathtaking, which was true, we just had a different perspective. I think mine is far more beautiful than a creator. I look at the Puget Sound and I see the randomness of The Universe that, hundreds of years ago, began to create the necessary components for stars, which warm our home. The Sun just so happened to form and Earth came together just in the perfect spot for liquid water to occur, giving life a fighting chance. That water froze and flowed and changed the face of the planet, changed where my ancestors came and went, changed my life. The choices of people who would never know me or imagine me made it possible for me to even exist on this random planet.

I looked at the beauty of the Puget Sound as I stood there with this woman and felt awe. I was blessed with life thanks to events out of my control and that is what I worship. I thank the Universe for existing and Life for allowing me to experience it. I would never credit such glory to anything but nature and my heart hurt slightly for the woman who would never bother to learn about what really had to happen for us to be standing there together, looking at the river otters gliding through the water, because she thought she already knew. She thought it was a gift from God.

I said my goodbye and began to walk, Lighting Crashes by Live playing in my headphones. Others had stopped to watch the river otters in the sunset-stained water and I wondered how they saw the moment. I wondered if they were even thinking about it.

Later on, I was alone on the trail and saw the river otter again, this time swimming in a water hole shaded by birch trees. I had the moment to myself this time and didn’t waste it thinking about glaciers or god. This time, I watched the otter glide between flustered geese and ducks. I took note of how his nose popped up and down as he swam and how the color of his coat matched the logs that he slid past.

The sun has started to come out and seems to promise another beautiful evening walk. I can’t wait to see what the universe has for me to stumble upon today.

Hail Beauty, my Darlings!

HS!

LH