Small Business Saturday: Your Support Makes a Difference
With holiday shopping around the corner, many of us are keeping an eye out for the best deals, but there’s a secret that can help you score the perfect present without all the Black Friday hullabaloo: Small Business Saturday.
What is Small Business Saturday?
Small Business Saturday is an initiative that highlights small businesses at the start of the holiday season, the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Small Business Saturday was initially conceived by American Express as a way to help small business owners weather the 2008 recession, and American Expressed partnered with the National Trust for Historic Preservation and Massachusetts organizations to celebrate the first Small Business Saturday on November 27th, 2010. In our current economic climate, Small Business Saturday is just as important as it was in 2010.
Small Business Saturday is an alternative to Black Friday at big box stores. Instead of camping out and fighting crowds for mass-produced products, Small Business Saturday gives you access to unique, artisanal gifts sold by real people, both in store and online.
Why Small Business Saturday is So Important
Small businesses are the lifeblood of our communities. They provide top notch products and services, job opportunities, and important economic activity. For every dollar spent at a small business, 67 cents are re-invested into the local community.
Because a small business works with fewer customers than a national corporation, they can give you personalized customer service and truly take your needs into account. With a small business, every sale makes a difference. If you don’t find exactly what you’re looking for, just ask; small business owners are always happy to give recommendations and may even make a special order for you.
How You Can Celebrate Small Business Saturday
This Small Business Saturday, show your support by:
- Purchasing your holiday gifts from small businesses, both online and in-person
- Grabbing your coffee from a café instead of a national coffee chain
- Dining at a local restaurant
- Sharing your favorite small businesses on social media with #smallbusinesssaturday
If you’re thrilled with your purchase, be sure to tell people about it! Reviews are extremely important to small businesses; since they can’t trade on a recognizable brand name, many rely on reviews to give potential customers confidence. Leaving a 5-star review can make a world of difference!
Small Business Saturday at My Dream Crystals
At My Dream Crystals, we care about you. We get excited by every order that comes in, and we package each crystal by hand. We are always here to answer any of your questions and help you pick the rights stones for your needs. We strive to go the extra mile with personalized attention and private shopping experiences.
On November 25th, check out our website or our Etsy shop to find the perfect presents for anyone on your list, limited time offers, and that special attention to detail that only a small business can provide!
Crystal Grids for Gratitude
With Thanksgiving just around the corner, many of us are thinking about gratitude. Being thankful isn’t just nice; it’s also key to developing a healthy, happy life. Gratitude reminds us of our values, supports strong relationships, and keeps us calm and content.
At My Dream Crystals, one of our favorite ways to practice gratitude is by creating gratitude crystal grids. Making a gratitude crystal grid a fun and enlightening activity, but crystal grids also make the perfect Thanksgiving centerpiece!
How to Make a Gratitude Crystal Grid
A crystal grid has three components: the Keystone (also known as the Focus Stone), the Way or Anchor Stones, and the Perimeter or Desire stones. Each component serves a specific purpose within the grid, and you want to think carefully when you are placing your crystals.
The Keystone is a single crystal in the center of a grid. Its central position belies its importance; the Keystone is the focus of your entire grid. When you’re picking your Keystone, you may want to think about what you’re most thankful for and choose an appropriate crystal. For example, if you are grateful for your family, try Garnet, or if you are grateful for financial security, use Pyrite.
Once you have selected your Keystone, it’s time to choose your Way Stones (sometimes called Anchor Stones), which make up the inner ring of your crystal grid. Your Way Stones form an energetic pathway. They carry the vibrations that support the focus you established with the Keystone. For example, if your gratitude practice is part of your spirituality, Crown Chakra crystals like Selenite or Amethyst can make strong Way Stones. You can choose more than one crystal for your Way Stones!
The final components of a crystal grid are the Desire or Perimeter Stones. These crystals dedicate your grid as a sacred space. Clear Quartz makes a great Desire Stone because it amplifies every stone it comes into contact with and supercharges your crystal grid, but you can also use protective crystals like Black Tourmaline or Shungite, which keep negative energy out. You can also use Desire Stones as an opportunity to magnify your Keystone by choosing related crystals. For example, if you used Pyrite as your Keystone, choose other money crystals like Citrine or Jade.
Our Favorite Gratitude Crystal Grid Combos
Here are a few of our favorite gratitude crystal grid ideas:
|What You’re Grateful For||Keystone||Way Stones||Desire Stone|
|Emotional Wellbeing||Rose Quartz||Iolite||Clear Quartz|
|Physical Wellbeing||Serpentine||Clear Quartz||Jade|
|Unexpected Opportunities||Malachite||Black Obsidian||Labradorite|
|Nature||Moss Agate||Amber||Petrified Wood|
Don’t feel like you’re stuck with these suggestions! Use our guidelines as inspiration, trust your intuition, and create your own grid. After all, gratitude crystal grids are all about your personal feelings.
With a gratitude crystal grid in the center of the table, you will definitely be ready for Thanksgiving Day!
How to Journal
Are you interested in journaling but unsure how to get started? We are happy to share some of our favorite tips (and crystals) to get you writing!
What is Journaling?
From cave paintings to social media, humans have always wanted to document their own lives. The earliest journals were financial records and travelogues, but by the Renaissance, these practical writings slowly shifted to focus on more personal matters. This new form of journaling culminated in 17th century England, when Samuel Pepys famously kept a series of diaries as a sort of autobiography.
Since Pepys, journals have served as both historical and literary documents, from Henry David Thoreau and Virginia Woolf to Franz Kafka and Anne Frank. In the 1960s, psychologist Ira Progoff began exploring journaling’s potential as a therapy tool, kicking off the modern concept of using journaling for mental health and self-improvement.
Journaling has since gone digital, from blogs to Instagram stories. However, there is still something very powerful about the classic, handwritten journal.
The Benefits of Journaling
Ever since Dr. Progoff’s research into journaling, academics all over the world have identified various benefits associated with journaling. Studies show that journaling helps you:
- Improve your mood and overall sense of wellbeing
- Strengthen communication skills
- Relieve stress
- Reduce symptoms of depression
- Boost your memory
- Encourage self-reflection
- Enhance emotional intelligence
- Inspire creativity
- Deepen your spirituality
- Achieve your goals
More than that, researchers at the University of Auckland in New Zealand have found that journaling can actually speed wound healing, improve recovery times, and even prevent illness. Journaling can literally improve your health!
Types of Journaling
With all of these benefits, who is ready to get started? While there are no formal rules for journaling, you may find it easier to begin with a certain style in mind. Consider:
Reflective Journaling: When you first think about journaling, reflective journaling is probably the type that comes to mind. This form of journaling is all about using your journal as a private space to process your emotions.
Crystal Journaling: Your crystal collection can be a great opportunity for journaling! Take one crystal at a time, really focus on it, and record your thoughts. What does the crystal look like? What do you notice by looking at it? Holding it? How does the crystal make you feel? What do you usually use it for?
Stream of Consciousness Journaling: Popularized by Julia Cameron in her book, The Artist’s Way, as “Morning Pages,” stream of consciousness journaling encourages you to write whatever comes to your mind for a set period of time. Your ideas don’t have to make coherent sense; just write until your timer goes off or you have filled your desired number of pages.
Art Journaling: If words aren’t your thing, try art journaling! Use the blank pages to create whatever you want. You can draw objects around you, illustrate scenes from your daily life, or take a more abstract route. You don’t need to create “good” art; just express yourself!
Bullet Journaling: One of the trendier forms of journaling in recent years, bullet journaling is a goal-focused method that is part diary, part planner. Use your bullet journal to keep track of your to-do list, meetings, and both long- and short-term goals. Bullet journals typically have dot grid patterns instead of lined pages, and many people organize them in an aesthetic manner with colored pencils, drawings, washi tape, and stickers.
Gratitude Journaling: If you are looking to begin or enhance a gratitude practice, try gratitude journaling! Start simple by just writing down one thing you are grateful for every day, and feel free to expand to longer lists or more in-depth explorations.
Travel Journaling: Some of the oldest journals ever were travel journals. Travel journals are a great way to keep your vacation memories with you forever. You can also consider decorating your travel journal with small mementos from your trip, like photos, tickets, and postcards. Plus, you have a great souvenir when the trip is over!
Nature Journaling: Nature journaling is a great way to connect with the world around you. Simply go find a place outdoors and write about what you observe. Try to engage as many senses as possible. What do you see? Hear? Smell? Feel? You can even illustrate anything you find particularly fascinating.
Dream Journaling: Most of us forget our dreams shortly after waking up, leaving their symbolism and messages lost to the ether. Keeping a dream journal on your bedside table allows you to write down your dreams as soon as you wake up. Then, you can analyze your dream later.
Reading Journaling: If you’re a bookworm, try reading journaling. Use your journal to jot down your thoughts on each chapter, record any quotes that resonate with you, and ask questions. Reading journaling is particularly helpful if you’re in a book club!
Lunar Journaling: The moon carries a lot of wisdom, and we can learn a lot about ourselves by connecting with the moon’s cycles. Try keeping a moon journal where you write about how you feel at different parts of the lunar cycle, like the New Moon, First Quarter, Full Moon, Third Quarter, and Dark Moon. You may even notice that the moon’s cycles tend to affect your mood you in consistent ways.
Now that you have your type of journal in mind, it’s time to get going! Remember these simple tips:
- Set a journaling schedule. It will be easier to keep up your habit if you have set aside a specific time every week or even every day.
- Invest in quality supplies. You can journal on anything, from loose sheets of paper to the Notes app on your phone. However, if you can, we recommend buying a journal that you find aesthetically pleasing and maybe even some special pens. The act of putting pen to paper is profoundly relaxing and centering.
- Charge your journaling materials with your crystals. Store a journaling crystal on top of or next to your journal and pens to infuse them with the crystal’s energies. You can also hold or keep a crystal nearby when you’re writing.
- Dedicate a writing space. Pick a quiet, personal space where you can write free from distractions.
- Don’t judge what you write. Journaling is about the practice of writing, not about writing well. Feel free to keep your journal private so that it is a criticism-free zone.
- Keep your journal handy. Throw your journal in your bag in case inspiration strikes on your commute or during lunch.
- Don’t be afraid of using writing prompts. If you’re struggling to write, prompts can get your creative juices flowing. You can find thousands of writing prompts online, or you can try writing a letter to your past self or reflecting on a quote.
What crystals are best for journaling? You definitely want to consider some Throat Chakra crystals, like Blue Kyanite, Blue Lace Agate, or Angelite. These stones will help you express yourself. Crystals like Sodalite and Lapis Lazuli, which link your Third Eye and Throat Chakras, can invite divine wisdom into your writing.
As you start to establish a journaling routine, focusing crystals like Clear Quartz, Fluorite,and Howlite are great choices. Amethyst encourages strong habit setting while also connecting you with your most spiritual self.
If you’re struggling to connect with your emotions in your journaling, try Heart Chakra crystals like Rose Quartz, Rhodonite, Chrysoprase, and Unakite.
Inspirational crystals can draw out your most creative side as you write, like Iolite, Labradorite, and Roby Zoisite.
Journaling and crystals are powerful tools for self-exploration and manifesting. When you combine their energies, there’s nothing you can’t do!
Get Grounded: Crystals for the Root Chakra
Do you feel overwhelmed? Are you struggling to focus? Do you feel anxious, but you can’t pinpoint the cause?
If you said “yes” to any of those questions, you may need to get back in touch with your Root Chakra.
What is the Root Chakra?
In ancient Ayurvedic health traditions, your body has a system of energy centers, known as Chakras, that run along your spinal column. Chakras contain your prana (life energy), and each Chakra corresponds to different aspects of your physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing. Clear, balanced Chakras are therefore key to living a healthy life. When a Chakra is clogged or out of alignment, you may start struggling with certain things.
The Root Chakra, called Muladhara (“root support”) in the Sanskrit Vedic texts, is located at the base of your spine. Just like a tree’s roots, the Root Chakra connects you to Mother Earth. It is the base that grounds your entire body, so it is important to check in with it regularly.
The Root Chakra keeps you in tune with the planet and your most basic needs. It reminds you that you are always divinely protected, and it helps you release things that do not serve you. When your Root Chakra is open and aligned, you are profoundly calm and confident. You feel safe in your own body, you have a balanced approach to the world, and you trust in the universe.
If you feel like you are being pulled in a thousand directions, overly anxious, and constantly burnt out, or your entire body is just out of whack, it’s probably time to get grounded and re-connect with your Root Chakra.
The Root Chakra is represented by the color red, and it is closely associated with the sense of smell and essential oils like patchouli and sandalwood.
Root Chakra Crystals
Crystals are one of the best ways to work with your Chakra system. Their high frequencies resonate with your prana to remove blockages and enhance your Chakra’s energies. You’ll get the best results with crystals that resonate directly with the Root Chakra, such as:
Aragonite clears blockages from your Root Chakra to balance your system and release toxicity. This crystal shows you how to replace stress and anxiety with a calm, stable, and focused approach. Aragonite refocuses your attention from your wants to your true needs.
Black Tourmaline is a powerful protector and cleanser. It acts as a shield, dispelling negative energies and psychic attacks. Black Tourmaline aligns your survival needs with your spiritual needs, bringing your full body into alignment. With Black Tourmaline’s protection, you can create a beautiful life based on trust, stability, and self-awareness.
Bloodstone helps you balance and protect your mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual bodies. This crystal works with your Root Chakra to promote mental clarity, focus, and creativity. Bloodstone is a powerful tool for decision-making and living in the present moment.
Garnet combines the elements of Earth and fire to inspire your most loving, artistic self while also keeping you grounded. This crystal connects you with your life purpose and assists you as you manifest your dreams. Garnet also strengthens relationships by encouraging loyalty, positivity, and genuine affection.
Hematite channels Root Chakra energy to supercharge your intellectual capabilities. By keeping you grounded and protected, this crystal helps you concentrate, think critically, and retain information. Hematite gives you the courage, motivation, and strength to overcome any challenge.
Jet’s protective frequencies wrap around you like armor. It transmutes negative energy into positivity so that you can move forward with confidence and clarity. Because it resonates so strongly with the Earth and the universe, Jet can also provide a little bit of extra luck.
Mahogany Obsidian connects your Root and Sacral Chakras to help you stand in your power. It encourages introspection and self-acceptance by helping you release any negativity or trauma that you have been holding on to. Mahogany Obsidian channels Earth energy toward personal development and transformation.
Petrified Wood is literally wood from a pre-historic tree that slowly turned to Quartz over time. This crystal carries all of the ancient wisdom and stabilizing energy of its ancestor tree. From this perspective, you remain calm and centered, and you have the support you need to persevere.
If you’ve never worked with your Root Chakra before, Red Jasper will activate your prana. This crystal transmits the Earth’s nurturing energies, imbuing you with courage, willpower, and vitality. Red Jasper encourages you to take calculated risks so that you can create the life of your dreams.
Thanks to its unique carbon cages, known as fullerenes, Shungite is one of the world’s most powerful cleansers. It is a natural water purifier, and its protective energy combats electromagnetic frequencies. When you need to refine your approach to the Root Chakra and deal with it on a subtle level, Shungite is the crystal for you.
How To Use Root Chakra Crystals
How do you use all of these Root Chakra crystals? There are plenty of options for grounding and connecting with your Root Chakra:
- Meditate: The Root Chakra encourages you to slow down and feel your connection to the universe—just like meditation.Try holding a Root Chakra crystal or place one nearby while you are meditating. To take your meditation to the next level, try earthing: meditating barefoot outside, where you can truly feel the Earth’s energy beneath your feet.
- Charge Your Cup: Coffee and tea are both strongly connected to the Earth, and if you leave a Root Chakra crystal next to your coffee maker while it brews or your tea while it steeps, you will make the most of both the crystal’s frequencies and the beverage’s grounding capabilities!
- Go For a Nature Walk: Since the Root Chakra resonates so strongly with the planet, throw a Root Chakra crystal into your pocket and go for a nature walk. Engage your senses and observe all of the Earth’s beauty around you. Look at the plants growing, hear the birds sing, smell the soil, and feel the sun’s warmth on your face.
- Make Something: The Root Chakra is the base from which everything is created, and you can tap into this creative energy. Whether you bake a loaf of bread, do a DIY project, or work in your garden, the physical act of making something grounds you in the planet’s fertile energy.
- Wear Root Chakra Jewelry: Crystals are beautiful in necklaces, rings, bracelets, and earrings, and when you wear grounding jewelry, you can enhance your Root Chakra whenever you want. Root Chakra jewelry is especially helpful whenever you are entering a stressful situation.
- Use a Worry Stone: When you need to connect with your Root Charka on the go, keep a worry stone in your pocket. Select a flat, smooth Root Chakra crystal and rub it whenever you find yourself getting anxious or overwhelmed. You can even find specific worry stones that already have a divot for your finger.
What lessons can you learn from the Earth? Get grounded and find out!
Crystals and Cauldrons
As the weather gets colder, it’s definitely the time of year for comfort food: soups, mashed potatoes, mac and cheese, and, of course, big turkey dinners. And lots of cooking means lots of time hovering over pots and pans.
Whether you realize it or not, every time you make your grandmom’s chicken noodle soup recipe, you’re a witch conjuring ancient magic in a bubbling cauldron. What is cauldron magic, and how can we incorporate it mindfully into our lives?
What is a Cauldron?
On the most basic level, cauldrons are heat-resistant vessels. Humanity’s earliest cauldrons date back to the Bronze Age, with developing societies hanging bronze vessels over their fires to cook food and boil water. Cauldrons of some sort have remained mainstays of homes all over the world for centuries, from cast iron pots in medieval peasant households to sleek, modern Le Creuset Dutch ovens.
As a cooking utensil, cauldrons represent transformation and fire energy. Ingredients go into the cauldron, and they come out changed. Cauldrons are also closely related to divine feminine energy; they act as nurturers and metaphorical wombs.
Cauldrons appear extensively in mythology and literature. Our stock image of witches gathered over a bubbling cauldron comes from Macbeth, but before Shakespeare’s weird sisters started to “double, double toil and trouble,” there was Cerridwen. The Welsh goddess of the underworld, Cerridwen’s cauldron held immense power: knowledge, creative inspiration, and rebirth.
How to Use a Cauldron
Cauldrons have a wide variety of practical and spiritual uses. Whether you are a witch or not, you probably already have a cauldron of some kind in your kitchen. A cast-iron Dutch oven is the most traditional, but a sturdy pot fills the same role!
When you use a food-safe cauldron to cook in the kitchen, you are harnessing fire’s elemental energy to transform your ingredients, which themselves may represent other elements like Earth (vegetables, herbs) or water (broth, milk, literal water). Obviously, not every meal has to become a ritual, but you can incorporate some kitchen witchery as you work!
We recommend leaving a Red Calcite crystal near your range (but not on it!) to infuse your food with warm, nurturing vibrations. Then, give some thought to the magical properties of your ingredients. As you throw them in, focus on the intent you want to add to your food. Some common magical ingredients include:
|Apples||love, psychic power|
|Chocolate||passion, friendship, nurturing|
|Oranges||joy, creativity, passion|
|Sugar||kindness, sweetness, luck|
|Blueberries||communication, peace, contentment|
|Cucumber||vitality, healing, fertility|
|Pomegranate||prosperity, protection, luck|
|Pineapple||hospitality, welcoming, abundance|
|Carrots||grounding, luck, fertility|
|Corn||spirituality, protection, acceptance|
|Potatoes||compassion, stability, protection|
|Ginger||energy, overall wellbeing|
When you eat the meal, you will be consuming these magical intentions!
However, cauldron magic isn’t confined to the kitchen. Above all, cauldrons are about transformation, so they are useful whenever you want to change something in your life.
Because cauldrons are fire-resistant, they are perfect for burning rituals. You can use a cauldron to ceremonially burn something you want to release, like a paper with a bad habit written on it or a picture of an ex you’re struggling to get over. You can also use a cauldron to make a wish or manifest something by writing your goal down on a piece of paper and burning it to send it out into the universe.
You don’t always have to be so literal, though. If you are working towards a long-term goal, you can symbolically “cook” your intentions in a cauldron. Try adding crystals, herbs, and anything else that reminds you of your intent to your cauldron and leaving it in a personal space, like your meditation altar or bedroom, to help you achieve your goal.
How To Use Crystals with Your Cauldron
We’ve hinted at a few ways that crystals and cauldrons go together. Some of our favorite uses for cauldron crystals include:
- Indirectly imbuing intentions into cauldron-made food
- Cleansing and charging the cauldron when it is not in use
- Infusing crystal water (either directly or indirectly)
- Symbolically “cooking” long-term goal spells
- Enhancing cauldron scrying
What cauldron crystals should you use? Generally, you want to think about crystals that match whatever intent you are trying to achieve with your cauldron. However, there are some crystals that play particularly well with the cauldron’s energies. Moonstone and Selenite connect with the cauldron’s divine feminine energy, and fire stones like Ruby, Garnet, Red Calcite, and Carnelian resonate with the cauldron’s fire energy. Transformative crystals like Malachite, Labradorite, Chalcopyrite, Petrified Wood, and Palm Root also enhance a cauldron’s ability to change your life.
What will you cook up this year?