Women who use disposable sanitary products, I'd like to tell you a story ...

I live on a boat, which got washed away from its mooring in Yorkshire, along with about 8 other boats, during the Boxing Day floods, when the River Aire breeched into the canal navigation, just downstream from Leeds. And so we have been temporarily re-located until sufficient safety and maintenance works have been done on the canal length, so that we can return to our mooring.


You may be wondering what this has to do with disposable sanitary products .... Well read on and you will find out ....


So yesterday, we went to go and clean up our mooring, in preparation for returning after the Boxing Day flooding dramas.


While my Other Half shovelled sludge and mud, I did a litter pick up and down the mooring.


It is a sad looking state of affairs, as the whole length of the canal and river has litter caught in all of the trees and bushes at the level the flood waters reached.


And I would estimate that between 50 and 75%of this rubbish is made up of...

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Dreadlocks ...

I was inspired to write this post after being asked what my thoughts were in regards to the claim that white people who have dreadlocks have culturally appropriated this hairstyle from black people, and as such it is offensive to them. This is my take on it ...


I am South African by birth, and although I moved to the Uk when very small, I have been back to South Africa many times in my life. I have many family members who live out there.


There is nowhere on earth that I know of that racism and white privilege is more obvious and in such constantly culturally clashing contrast, between white and black people, as in South Africa.


The last time I went, I had dreadlocks, and I can't tell you what a different experience it was to be a white person, backpacking on all the forms of transport that only black people use.


My white privileged family told me firstly that there wasn't even a train system running anymore. Wrong. But only back people use it. I was told...

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Shamanic Journeying - DIY Power Animal Retrieval

You can call for a power animal to help you with any aspect of your life, and they bring you a gift of energy to assist you with that situation. This is a done by taking a shamanic journey, or visualisation journey, the purpose being to call upon energetic assistance from the animal spirit realm to help you in whatever way you need it.


To give you some examples, you could call upon a power animal to;


• help you heal in some way, eg from birth trauma, grief, abuse etc

• strengthen you if you suffer from eg. fear, anxiety, lack of confidence

• help you maintain strong positive energy dynamics/boundaries with those around you eg. partner, parents, children, work colleagues, friends etc

• support you through difficult or challenging life circumstances/transitions eg. leaving a relationship, moving house, changing job, having a baby

• help you to conceive

• help you sleep

• give you more energy

• help you child's eczema (you dont need...

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Why Women Choose To Freebirth

This article was written after I undertook some informal research on a freebirth forum that I am a member of, on why women choose to freebirth. This is what I discovered ...



Firstly, I’d like to just address the issue of terminology regarding birthing without medical assistance;

While the term Unassisted Childbirth (or UC - coined by Laura Kaplan-Shanley in the book entitled Unassisted Childbirth) is commonly used these days to refer to a birth that is planned and occurs without medical assistance, the term ‘freebirth’ seems to be generally preferred by freebirthers themselves, as they consider their experience to be one that is ‘free’ or ‘freeing’, whereas the term Unassisted Childbirth implies that childbirth ought to be assisted by someone, and that the mother cannot or should not be doing it by herself.


Also the idea and term of ‘assistance’ is further muddied by differing opinions on what...

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Mary-Jane; My Freebirth Plant Doula

I’d like to share with you my story of Freebirthing with my good friend Mary-Jane.


Yes, I smoked Ganga at the very end of my pregnancy, through labour, and during the first 2-3 weeks post-partum. I had not smoked anything at all through the rest of my pregnancy, and had not been a habitual smoker for many years.


Here is my experience.......


During my late teens and 20s, I smoked Ganga regularly and habitually. For me it was emotional and mental anaesthetic to numb the pain caused by very violent and traumatic experiences I had from age 17-21. During my 20s I also started learning about healing, and as my healing journey progressed, I relied less and less upon my good friend Mary-Jane, until by my 30s I no longer smoked it regularly. Very occasionally I would be given some in trade or exchange for some healing I had done for someone. And it would sit in a special box for the time when I might really need it. When my father died, for example, I had some that...

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Defining Freebirth and the Paradox of Freedom

Freebirth - it is hard to define. I think that's because as a concept and a practise, it is about autonomy. Autonomy from a system, and agents of that system, who seek to control, co-erce, manipulate and ultimately enforce conformity to a self-appointing institutional disciplining authority. I guess for me a freebirther is someone who autonomously births without having allowed themselves to be disempowered or subjected by said authority.


This discussion has spun off from a thread on a homebirth forum today, regarding a lady who wanted to know if she can claim her birth as a freebirth when the midwife was in the room next door. This kind of mentality, I believe, stems from any kind of alternative movement gathering a hip status, cos it's just so “out there man”. Anti-authoritarian political action gains a fashionable following, with all sorts of conformist folk wishing they were that brave/cool/radical etc. You see it in all walks of life, those who aspire to a...

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Born on a Barge - Holly's Birth Story

Holly Elfin was born at 6.55am on Saturday the 11th of August.


If you follow the astrological significance of birth, this means she is a Leo, born in the Chinese year of the Water Dragon. She was due at the Full Moon, on her father’s birthday, but was a week and two days late, and so was born on her grandfather’s birthday instead on a waning moon in Pisces.


She was delivered by me into the waiting hands of her father, Dan, on our boat, with the support and loving presence of our friends Lisa and Sara. We were moored up in a small wooded copse, in a beautiful wilderness valley in Yorkshire, where the foxes howl, the owls screech and a panther prowls it’s realm.


On the bank, within the Aspen trees was a firepit, and an alter to the beauty and power of woman, motherhood and birth. My firekeeper and guardian of the outside birth space was Lee, Sara’s husband, who lit and tended the fire each night for us, for the three nights that I laboured...

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Birth Journey- Blessingway Magic (Poem)

Birth Journey – Blessingway Magic


Let me take you on a journey, sisters, travel with me now.

A journey for my birthing, of where and who and how.

Imagine if you will now, a lovely valley not far from here,

A little way upstream on this canal, do you want to lock or steer?

For we shall take our boat this way, a week or two from now

And I shall take the tiller, and you can stand upon the bow

For bridges are too much for me and winding locks is out

As at nearly 9 months pregnant, I am really far too stout.

So in summer sun, I hope at least, we'll wind our merry way

To the place where I shall birth my babe on his or her birthday.


And so the place that I have picked to bring you to my breast

Is a place of power and nature, a place to stop and rest.

On one side of the valley, the river winds it's course

Twisting like a serpent, an untamed waterforce.

And when I first feel labour start, to you I'll make my way,

To swim and meet the Goddess of this flowing waterway,


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