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  • Catherine Greer

Pretty Rocks


I've been letting my witchy side buy things. I thought it would be fun to share my history with rock collecting, as well as shamelessly show off a few of my go-to stones and relate some of the insights they've led me to. I've been collecting pretty rocks since I was tiny. I remember multiple days as a kid where I would sit at the playground and pick through the pebble mix they used just so I could find agates. My brother and I both were guilty of heavy pockets full of rocks throughout our childhood - once, I even got in trouble for taking a few white marble chips from a family member's raised garden beds. Pretty rocks were very, very important! And they occasionally made it all the way through a load of laundry. Oops... It didn't take long to graduate from pretty playground stones to rough crystals and tumbled stones. My first rough crystal was actually a geode from OMSI (Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, for the non-locals) that I cracked open myself. I got hooked on those grow-your-own-crystal kits, and was always very disappointed that I didn't get an actual crystal tower to grow out of the things... just some very vibrantly colored messes. :)  Many of my first crystals came from the OMSI store, actually. My mom used to take us to OMSI all the time, and it's definitely a happy place for me. I have a small tradition that I have yet to give up. Every time I go to the museum for an exhibit, I also go purchase a new stone and some rock candy. It's almost always less than $3 and it makes my soul sing. I told Aaron about this tradition. He remembered it the next time we went to OMSI and he bought me a beautiful calcite stone and some rock candy. *swoon* I'm guilty of spending ten minutes digging through those tourist-trap tumbled stone basins in souvenir shops, looking for the exactly right piece. Many of those stones still live in my collection today. My mom has always been supportive of my random collections, and as such, many of my tumbled stones are actually from her. Between my mom and my tendency to hoard rocks from souvenir shops, I've got quite a pile of pretty stones on my altar. 

About a year and a half ago, I allowed myself to follow some crystal shops on Instagram. I knew it was only a matter of time before I began purchasing tower points, and I wanted to vet the shop owners before making a selection. Part of this was because I met Reid North at CCC, who is a gifted sculptor, ceramicist, musician, and wire-wrap artist. Reid custom-made my wedding necklace using a pearl I'd gotten from an oyster in Downtown Disney CA and a small amethyst (my birthstone) I'd received from my Grandma as a 16th birthday gift.


www.reidswraps.com

Reid's attention to detail and careful consideration of my semi-precious gems made me want to find other people who cared about stones as much as he did... and as much as I do. I also got hooked on owning wire-wrapped pieces, because it meant I could carry stones with me even if I didn't have pockets. As such, my first few purchases from Instagram shops were of wire-wrapped necklaces. I own several beautiful necklaces now. One of my favorites comes from A Touch of A Feather:


touchofafeather.com This piece jumped out at me during a sale Shelby was running. She considers these designs seashells, but this particular one read as a cat to me. A moonstone and a kitty? How could I say no! I've owned her for almost a year now, and I still get compliments almost every time I wear her out of the house. I love that her head is a tumbled rainbow moonstone, but her body is a rough aquamarine. I also love that the aquamarine doesn't quite fill up the space created - the gap where her heart is has been very beneficial for meditative purposes. It's hard not to feel openness and positivity when in the presence of this piece. I also have a small love affair with rainbow fluorite. My first polished tower point was a rainbow fluorite that I won in an auction post from Shine Like Stars:


Instagram: @shine_lk_stars

This piece also pulled at me. I love the hazy quality of the stone itself - many people think it's a smoky quartz at first glance. Each side has a different and striking appearance under light, and it has no apparent blue striations. It has been a leader in my crystal collection, and is the first stone I bring to share with other people. I recently used it as a guide to help a friend smudge her house. I temporarily lent it to her in order to build a stronger connection through her to the house. I love its accessibility and love that I continue to learn lessons from it. The last piece I want to show off today is the pocket stone my mom got me for Christmas. I had already sent my Christmas list over, and then my favorite crystal shop posted an update and I was struck by this particular stone. So I sent my mom a link to the specific listing I was drawn to, and she was able to snag it and still surprise me! All of Jennie's photos are stunning, and the crystals come looking exactly like their photographs. She's also insanely prompt at shipping, and likes to give small tumbled stones as a bonus gift. I highly recommend her shop! 


www.allthatshimmerzz.com

This piece has been on or near my person nearly every day since Christmas morning. I've already used it as part of a meditative cleansing ritual I did to welcome a new tarot deck I'd collected. It also accompanies me to work - I got a new purse that has a small pocket in the front that is perfectly shaped to carry stones in without fear of them finding their way out accidentally. This piece has an incredibly calming effect - rainbow moonstone is a calming stone, the shape itself is a worry stone, and black tourmaline is a protection stone that connects your body's energy to the Earth. Rainbow moonstone has the power to protect, to purify, and it has even been said that it can grant wishes. It has been a significant source of insight, and I believe that receiving it right before a new year was especially fortuitous.  I don't often talk about my witchy side, and while I'm not shy about my altar or my stone collection, I also don't really talk about them either. In my journey, I've been slowly learning about the properties and benefits my crystals can bring me. I have shared small tidbits with family and friends who are curious - for instance, my father heard me talking about my large aventurine tower and the luck it has brought me, so he requested to take it with him on a vacation to a couple different casinos. LOL! I happily lent it to him - he felt a genuine pull to the stone, and I firmly believe that if a stone of mine vibes with someone, then it either has a lesson to give or a lesson to learn.

I like the concept of my stones traveling and bringing knowledge back to me. It was very interesting to lend my rainbow fluorite to my friend with the express purpose of loading her energy into it so that we would both have a grounding connection during the smudging we did. Receiving it back was a very strange experience - it felt familiar and new all at once. I think this was actually a poignant opportunity to recognize and respect the presence of someone else's spirit.

And that's where I'll leave off! Happy New Year, everyone. I hope this year brings good things to each of you.


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