Editress: Ginger Strivelli The May Day Celebration report by Amber; The APA May Day 2004 gathering was a success. (Of course, this was my first.) From what I understand, Ginger and Beth were there early to reserve the spot, so they hung out and read Tarot cards while eating donuts. Then everyone started to arrive. (I believe that Sean and my family pulled up at the same time.) Slowly group by group we trickled in. (I'm not sure what order everyone arrived in.) The weather was nice, not to hot, not to cold. We collected one can for Ceres at the site, Ginger was going to add when she got home. Once we were set up, there was a buffet of side dishes (coleslaw soup, pasta salad and chips) as well as desserts (lemon cake, gluten free white cake, pecan pie, the `official cake', my weird fruit salad stuff.). All the food was delicious. The Strivelli children got their potato chips, while Sybilsue informed my husband and I that "Food is more precious than gold, unless you're going to buy food with the gold." Beth opened the circle; Ginger led the fertility rite and blessing of the seeds, and Paula closed the circle. Ginger then saw to the falling May Pole (wait till I get my pictures developed. ;)) and the children danced and enjoyed themselves. After circle everyone (but me and my weird gluten free family) shared in the 'official cake'. The 'Official Cake' was a chocolate cake with 'Merry May Day' written all pretty on top. Everyone finished the day enjoying each others company by talking and sharing stories about family members. After my daughter took a spill and split her scab open, we got on the subject of putting vinegar on sunburns and home remedies for scrapes and what not. Then slowly group by group, we left. Just as we had came. Not all of us made it but quite a few did, including Moss, who made it right as Ginger and I were heading home ways. (Sorry Moss.) We greatly missed all who didn't make it. Merry Beltane, Y'all. Amber -------------------------------------------- FROM OUR BOOK OF SHADOWS; Recipe submitted By Ginger Strivelli 1. 7-UP LEMON CHEESECAKE WITH Cherry GLAZE (No Bake!) CRUMB CRUST: 2 c Graham cracker crumbs 1/2 c Powdered sugar 1/2 c Butter; melted 1 ts Cinnamon 7-UP FILLING: 1 pk Unflavored gelatin 1 1/2 c cherry 7-up; divided 1 sm Lemon pudding & pie filling; - not instant 6 tb Sugar 2 Eggs; beaten 3/4 c Water 11 oz Cream cheese; softened Cherry pie filling topping CRUST: Combine well the graham cracker crumbs, powdered sugar, cinnamon, and melted butter. Press onto bottom and part of the way up sides of buttered 9" round pan; chill. FILLING: Soften unflavored gelatin in 1/4 cup cherry 7-up for 4 minutes. In a saucepan combine pie filling, sugar, beaten eggs and water. Blend well. Add 1-1/4 cup cherry 7-up and bring just to a boil over medium heat stirring constantly; remove from heat. Stir in softened gelatin; cool 3 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of this warm mixture to softened cream cheese; mash together. Mix together with remaining cherry 7-up mixture and stir until well blended. Turn into chilled crust and chill for at least 8 hours. Remove from pan and add topping. TOPPING: Brush top of chilled cheesecake with cherry pie filling. ------------------------------------ Sacred Sites Section: Submitted by Joy Joza The Great Smoky Mountains have long been considered a sacred place for many reasons. It is sacred to the Cherokee Indians and other tribes who have lived here in the edges of the Great Smokies of NC for centuries and also to all those who respect Mother Nature. All nature spots are sacred sites, but some hold specific focused energy that, when experienced directly, can awaken us to greater awareness and self-realization. Being in nature can greatly enhance our connection with the divinity of the planet. It is our direct link to the heart and soul of Gaia, the Earth Mother. These peoples consciously honored the Earth Mother in their sacred ceremonies, and they sought out these special places during their vision quests because they could feel the focused spiritual energy and inherent sacredness of each location. There are many waterfalls, caves, a granite monoliths, rocky cliffs, and the awe inspiring Linville Gorge where you could find divine inspiration for your spiritual energy to honor the sacred Goddess and/ God.