Nov 212011

 Chopin and Beyond Chopin and Beyond
Chopin and Beyond: My Extraordinary Life in Music and the Paranormal Chopin and Beyond

I was recently given the opportunity to review, Chopin and Beyond, by Byron Janis (published Oct. 2010).  It is an engaging book, that gives the reader a glimpse into the life a man with creative genius and unwavering strength of will. He was born in Pennsylvania in 1928.  Janis recounts his journey from a child prodigy (the family sacrifics, influential patrons, and synchronicty of events that made it possible for his talent to unfold and opened experiences and opportunites) to becoming a world famous classical pianist.  At age 20 his debut at Carnegie Hall marked the beginning of a glamorous career traveling the world, meeting celebrities and royalty.  His life was not all smooth sailing.  Janis had to face many struggles, including injuries to his hands and crippling arthritis that almost ended his career.  Along with the milestones, anecdotes and memories from his life and career, Janis shares a glimpse into the other worldly experiences and inner voice that called for him to strive for “more than music.”  These paranormal experiences transformed and shaped his life and music in profound ways.

Janis is an extremely talented classical pianist, but not a professional writer.  What he lacks in writing skill is made up for by the strength of spirit, determination, and insights that are presented.  At times the book is a bit choppy in the presentation of events, with tidbits of what seems like unrelated events dropped into the narrative of the story being recounted, only loosely connected to what is occurring in the same time frame.  The lack of writing polish is more than made up for by the author’s genuine voice speaking through the pages, recounting his life story in his own words.

There are many inspirational moments throughout the book.  Here are just a few:

  • after a childhood injury to his hand and all but one piano teacher abandoned him, Janis writes “sometimes all you need is just one person to believe in you and you feel that you can do anything – but only as long as you believe in yourself”
  • other childhood lessons he learned from his piano mentors – humor and being playful were acceptable; and how important is was to not idolize or imitate others, “there is more than one viable way to approach something.”
  • when crippling arthritis almost ended his career he battled the physical and emotional challenges, learning to live with limtiations gave him a new intensity for life, he “couldn’t control he had arthritis but he could control how he coped.”
  • he became a spokesperson for the arthritis foundation and he would tell the children, “don’t have one dream, have dreams.”  He encouraged them to think beyond the limitations of the arthritis and explore other ways to express their dreams and achieve their goals.

I was born with juvenile rhumatoid arthritis, so I found his strength of will to battle the disease truly inspirational.  I am also interested in the possibility of paranormal experiences, and found his encounters interesting examples of what may be possible.

Overall an entertaining and inspiring book amount a fascinating personality with a touch of the “unknown” thrown in for a bit of added spice.

Disclosure:  I was a given a free copy of the book for review, no other compensation was given. The book will be donated to the local library.

Nov 112011

blissfulmoonheader 1 1 300x84 Blissful Moon One Month Blogaversary

I know most folks celebrate a one year blogaversary, but I am having so much fun since the official grand opening of Blissful Moon that I couldn’t resist celebrating a one month blogaversary.  It’s been great re-connecting with friends from previous blogs and making new friends.   I want to thank everyone who has stopped by, left a comment, and-or clicked “like”, “follow” etc.   Here is a quick look a back at October.

October in Review

Favorite Posts for October:

  • Pumpkin Fluff Indulgence recipe (a hit with blog visitors and my favorite fall treat)
  • Ask A Witch – great questions were asked and look forward to answering more, so keep them coming!
  • My First Ghost Story – I really enjoyed sharing ghost stories and reading the ghost stories others shared too


  • Created my first collection of Free Blog Badges (“Protected by Withcraft”)
  • Created Blissful Moon Toolbar – free to download so share the magic!
  • Figured out how to install a few plugins on my own (without blowing up the blog!)
  • Figured out how to add apps to Blissful Moon facebook page (for example the Welcome Page)
  • Bought a new camera so I can take better blog photos.  I had been using my ipod, but decided to get a camera for better quality photos.

Future Posts, Plans, and Goals:

  • Cauldron Chats, starting Dec. 1 a monthly topic for all to join in (will add participating blog post links to the monthly topic post) – see blog button in right column
  • Create more free blog graphics, post more free crochet patterns and coloring pages, and I’ll keep an eye out for other fun freebies
  • My wedding videos – finally found the tape after 20 yrs and transferred it to a dvd. We were married on stage with live performances and music. I am looking forward to sharing it with everyone and posting videos.
  • Video reviews of the tarot decks from my tarot collection (100+ decks) – plan on doing a couple each month.
  • I’d like to have a few headers designs for the blog to be able change the look now and then (which means I’d also have to learn how to switch the files)
  • I’d like to learn a bit more about the technical side of blogging so I can do some of the tinkering and updates myself, but that is way now the road
  • Need to figure out why my “favicon” is not appearing in my favorites list for Blissful Moon

November is shaping up to an awesome month.  I’ve started participating in Thurs. 13 and hope to do so at least once or twice a month.  I’ve committed to a blog post every day (NaBloPoMo by BlogHer).  I am working on the first book review to be posted soon.  This weekend I am attending the Be Thankful Retreat hosted by Circle of Trees, I’ll be firewalking and attending various workshops on health.  Also, at the retreat I will be presenting an Intro. to Qi Gong for Healing and offering qi gong healing sessions.

What was your favorite October Blissful Moon post or topic?  Is there a topic you’d like to see added for future discussions?  Do you have a blog, when is your blogaversary and how do plan to celebrate?

I invite you to help me celebrate by sub­scrib­ing to our feed, fol­low­ing me on Twit­ter,  click “like” on Face­book, joining with networked blogs or any of the other options available in the right columns.  Thank you!

Bright Blessings, Lady Rose


Oct 112011

MerryMeetPic 300x170 Welcome and Merry Meet (a tale of how it all began)

Welcome to Blissful Moon

Thank you for stopping by. The blog was ready to go live a bit earlier then I originally planned, so a few details, addons, and polish are not finished yet. However, since today is the Full Moon I didn’t want to wait.  What better day to open Blissful Moon then the full moon!

Though this is my first post here, it is not my first time blogging. I hope that old friends from previous blogs will drop by and enjoy the new content. I also look forward to making new friends who discover Blissful Moon for the first time. You may be curious about who is “Lady Rose” (a.k.a. Cynthia – me) and just how did this blogging thing begin. To get a sneak peak into my slightly eccentric inner workings here is an brief introductory post” and for even more there is the “About” page.

As far as how my blogging adventures began, the tale begins when two witches crossed paths about 25 years ago and over the years they became best friends and heart-sisters and eventually one witch talked the other witch into blogging. Mama Kelly began blogging on Jan. 25, 2006, the blog’s name was Mama Kelly’s Musings on Blogger – her first post was “What Everyone Should Know About Wicca and Witchcraft” (it is now posted over on her current blog Blade and Cauldron, renamed and updated: My Name is Kelly and I’m a Witch). Shortly thereafter Mama Kelly convinced her best friend Lady Rose (me) that she should start blogging too. And so on March 6, 2006, with the a few clicks and a spark from muse my first blog, Purple Moon Garden, magically appeared with my very first post, “Lady Rose Introduction” (will updated and reposted here).

It didn’t take long for the two best friends (who just happen to also be witches) to realize it would be a lot more fun if they blogged together, so April 22, 2006 Mama Kelly moved her posts over to Purple Moon Garden. As they learned more about blogging and decided to expand, they moved all the content over to a free WordPress blog at the end of July, 2006 – the new blog was also called Purple Moon Garden but later changed to A Blog of 2 Witches . Mama Kelly and Lady Rose could now expand their content by adding pages and more useful useful information for their readers.

In April 2007, there was a glitch with WordPress and the blog was shut down for several days. Mama Kelly and Lady Rose scrambled to start over and created a new account for A Blog of 2 Witches. Once the old blog had been restored, they decided they liked their fresh start and decided to just stay there so they moved (once again) all the old content over. Over the next several months the blog went through several changes, various themes, and a title change becoming 2 Witches Blog.

Mama Kelly and Lady Rose dreamed of one day having their very own domain so they bought the domain name, but it took over a year to finally arrange for hosting. In August of 2008 Lady Rose discovered that the hosting service she was using for her other blog had just added a new feature – a second domain could be hosted for no extra cost. Finally their dream for 2 Witches Blog was going to come true. It took three months months to set up the theme, plugins and widgets and move over 100 pages of content and two years worth of daily posts (over 1300), do all the internal linking and graphics, etc.

Finally the big day arrived, Nov. 1, 2008 (Samhain) 2 Witches Blog held their grand opening on their very own dot com in their new blogging home – Welcome to the Grand Opening. They also maintained their own individual blogs as well – Mamma Kelly’s current blog is Blade and Cauldron (a frugal family; recipes, reviews, rants, and revelations along the way) and Lady Rose’s Diet Pulpit (“Don’t be a fool, eat for fuel! The journey to recover my health, from 308 lbs to 135 lbs). The twists and turns of real life combined with the time demands of working full time, family and blogging eventually took their toll and there was little time to devote to maintaining the joint project, 2 Witches Blog, and eventually the project was set aside. My personal blog, Diet Pulpit, began as Incredible Shrinking Ladies in April 2006 and eventually became Diet Pulpit (a humorous approach to getting healthy and achieving my goal weight which I did in Jan. 2011); the last update was in July 2011 (I backed up all the information and kept the blog live for awhile, but no longer update it). It is a journal of my years of struggling to recover my health and served it’s purpose well, but having reached my health goal (going from 308 lbs to a healthy 135 lbs), the theme of the blog was too confining and I felt the need to start something new to reflect my new goals and where I could combine my many interests and creative ideas in one place – and so the idea for Blissful Moon was born Sept. 2011 but took several weeks to finally go live.

So after a long and winding path and almost six years, I am beginning anew with Blissful Moon – there will be elements from past blogs (my goals for healthy living, incorporting spiritual inspiration and magic in daily life), current projects I am working on (for example, “end the clutter project”) and my goals to live my bliss, explore creative ideas and projects, finding joy in the simple moments of every day life and to live life as a wise woman.

I look forward to sharing the journey with all of you. Please take a moment to subscribe to our feed, “like” us on facebook, leave comments, ask questions, and pop in to sit a spell.  I invite you all to stop back often to see what stories, musings, tangents, rants, or prose may fly from my fingertips.  I welcome your comments, input and suggestions.

Bright Blessings, Lady Rose

Oct 102011

AskAWitch 300x168 Ask A Witch


Due to time constraints can longer support “Ask A Witch” – feel free leave a question about a post in comments, I will try answer as time allows, but make no guarantees. Thank you for understanding.

Ask A Witch is a regular feature here at Blissful Moon. If you have a question or suggestion please feel free to leave a comment.

Have a question you’ve been itching to ask a witch? Are you curious about something related to qi gong, wicca, tarot, the occult, or even about me?  Do you want more information on a subject or topic you would like to see added to Blissful Moon? I am happy to consider all suggestions made by my readers and will do my best to answer questions.  All questions are answered in a blog post (only the initials of the person asking will be posted).

Namaste, Lady Rose

Oct 092011

CauldronChat Cauldron Chat


About Cauldron Chat: A monthly discussion hosted by Blissful Moon. Cauldron Chat is an opportunity for getting to know each other and share ideas, wisdom, insight, opinions, support and even a laugh or two.  (Index below of monthly topics)

The first of the month a new Cauldron Chat topic or question will be posted. Everyone is invited to join in the discussion (see below for ways to participate in current or past discussion topics). If you write a Cauldron Chat post on your blog and leave the url in comments, it will be added to the post list of participants.

Ways to participate:

  • Join in the discussion by leaving a comment on the topic
  • Join in the discussion by writing a blog post on the current Cauldron Chat topic or a past topic  (leave the url in comments and it will be added to that months post).  If you do not have the Cauldron Chat button & link in your sidebar, a link back in your post is appreciated.
  • Grab a Cauldron Chat button for your blog (see below) – copy and paste the code for the first image, or right click one of the alternative buttons and add a link
  • Support participants by visiting their blog posts (leaving comments, clicking +1, “like”, digg, stumble, tweet, up on networked blogs)
  • Spread the word about Cauldron Chat and encourage the sharing of ideas (clicking +1, “like”, digg, stumble, tweet, up on networked blogs)
  • Suggest a topic or question for discussion

Cauldron Chat Button and code: (size 150×150)
Use the button exchange code in our side bar to quickly and easily add button to your sidebar. Or to add to a blog post or other location – right click, save, upload and link:
CauldronChat Cauldron Chat


Alternative Cauldron Chat Buttons: (size: 150×150)
Please right click, save, upload to your blog and link:
CauldronChat 2 Cauldron Chat )O(CauldronChat 3 Cauldron Chat

CauldronChat 4 Cauldron Chat)O(CauldronChat 5 Cauldron Chat


Index of Cauldron Chats:

December 1, 2011 Crystals
January 1, 2012 New Year Resolutions – positive steps for growth or set up for failure?
February 1, 2012 How do You bring a little magic into every day?

pixel Cauldron Chat