Tarot Deck Exploration – The Illusori Tarot

Title: The Illusori Tarot

CreatorSvetlana Gayvoronskaya

Publisher: Self Published

Format: 78 Cards

Language: English

Size of Cards: 7cm x 12cm

What You Get: The tarot deck in a box. No little white book.

Impressions: This deck was created with ball point pen, coloured pencils and markers. Most of the cards have a key word on them so maybe that is why there is no little booklet. It is a little random that some cards do not have a key word. For example the Strength card does not but the card means more than just it’s title. In any case most of the cards have a key word. This can help beginners with the deck and also help jog memories of more experienced Tarot readers. The key words are also pretty important as there is not a lot of people in the cards so interpreting them from just the images could be hard. In saying that the images are very vivid and alluring.

The card stock is really nice and thick and they are great to shuffle. The back of the cards have a very funky design but it is not mirror imaged so you know if the cards are going to be reversed before you lay them out.

Each deck is numbered and it is a very limited run.

Where to Purchase: At the Illusori Tarot site This is a limited edition collectors item so get in quick!

illusori tarot minor arcana illusori tarot majors illusori tarot the court cards illusori tarot the aces

illusori tarot box and back of card

The Tarot Box and Back of the Cards

Guest Blog Post – Mary from Hands and Paws Reiki


I would like to Welcome Mary to Ethony.com to offer an Oracle reading for my readers. Enjoy and I hope you receive the message that you need.


My name is Mary and I am an oracle reader.

An Oracle Reader uses oracle cards, sometimes called wisdom cards for divination and spiritual guidance.

In this respect they are exactly like tarot cards. An oracle reading can be just as detailed as tarot. The difference between the two lies in the reader. A reader translates the spread through guides. These guides can be the reader’s, the recipient’s, or both.

I use oracle cards because that is how I interpret messages from the guides. Oracle cards speak to me, but tarot does not.

Oracle cards can relay a simple message or offer detailed clarity for any of life’s issues.

As an example of a simple message: I am going to post three different oracle cards. Before you choose which card appeals to you, ask your guides to direct you to the card that applies to you.

The first card is from the Archangel Michael deck by Doreen Virtue, the second card is from Angel Dreams by Doreen Virtue, and the third is from Animal Dreaming by Scott Alexander King.

Pick One


If you chose Archangel Michael:


This is a sign to honor yourself, even if those around you do not. There may be behaviors that you know are not healthy for you and it triggers guilt. Guilt destroys self-respect. Insist on being treated with respect by family and peers. If you have trouble seeing your worth, it is time to seek out a counselor who can help.

If you chose Angel Dreams:


This card signifies that you need to resolve a problem in your life and you are aware of what it is. Stand firm, as persistence will benefit you. You can call upon your guides for enlightenment. I have the best way to do this is to set an intent before you go to sleep. A simple intent could be: “ I call upon my guides to give me the answer to ____________ in my dreams.” When you awake, write down immediately any messages that came to you.

If you chose Animal Dreaming:


The male Bowerbird is known for his bower. He creates a nest filled with objects to attract a mate. This card indicates that you are readying for a change. You need to make preparations for the next phase of your life. These preparations can be in the form of study, cost cutting, self –esteem, savings, spiritual development,

Keep in mind that we all have free will, you can take what feels right from the message and discard the rest.

Did your message speak to you?

Mary Oquendo is co-owner of Hands And Paws- Reiki For All in New MIlford, CT. It is a wellness and educational center for people and pets. Visit her website at www.handsandpawsreiki.com to learn more about Mary.

Hands and Paws Facebook Page FB page https://www.facebook.com/HandsAndPawsReikiForAll

Mary’s Blog http://handsandpawsreiki.com/blog/


Lammas Tarot Blog Hop – Your Inner Queen Of Pentacles

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Welcome to the Lammas Tarot Blog Hop! 

Please check out the other wonderful posts using the navigation at the top and bottom of this post.

This seasons theme is - “How Do You Channel Your Inner Queen Of Pentacles?”

It is no big surprise that a lot of people find the Court Cards in the Tarot are a little illusive and hard to define. This can be because they can represent a person, or an aspect of ourselves or the situation. With most of us all having a number of people in our lives and a number of hats that we wear this ads to the confusion.

We can cut through the confusion with knowledge of ourselves, tarot activities and also with great questions like the theme for our blog hop this Sabbat. When we are able to reflect on how we see ourselves in a card it can allow us to get clarity very quickly.

So lets have a look at the Queen of Pentacles and what she represents.

Queen of Pentacles Information

The Queen of Pentacles is a no nonsense kind of Woman who you would be happy to go to for advice and council. She walks her talk. So how can you channel this fruitful energy for yourself?

For me it comes from a place of business and career. I have a Diploma in Management and spent 13 years in the Human Resources industry helping people find employment and develop their careers.

I thought it would be fitting to create a Queen of Pentacles Tarot Spread to aid you in your career or to bookmark or save the Tarot Spread for when you need it in the future. To really get into the zone of the Queen of Pentacles you can take some time to think about all of the things that she represents in your life and personality and even what you would like to gain from working with her energy. Would you like to be more practical when making decisions? She is a great Archetype to work with if that is the case. You could even visualise yourself as the Queen of Pentacles when performing this reading for yourself or others.

Queen of Pentacles Tarot Spread

Queen of Pentacles Tarot Spread Logo

Queen of Pentacles Tarot Spread

Tarot Deck Used:  The Deck of 1000 Spreads: Your Tarot Toolkit for Creating the Perfect Spread for Any Situation

Card 1. Career – The Current State of Your Career

Card 2. You – You and your attitudes, energies and thoughts around this subject.

Card 3. Co-Workers (or others involved if you work solo) – The energy and influences around them that impact you and your career

Card 4. Underlying Influences – What is at the root of your Career (is it helping or hindering?)

Card 5. Action – The action you are advised to take to achieve your wanted outcome

Card 6. Negative Influences – Any obstacles or walls blocking your career

Card 7. Advice – The Outcome and what to do to achieve it (see card 5 to see if there is any connection)

Card 8. Immediate Future – The energies around your immediate future

Card 9. What to Leave in the Past – What to let go of.

This spread can be used at any time to gain insight into your Career. May the Queen of Pentacles bless your work, home and hearth.

Lammas Blessings

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Spellcraft 101 Workshop – Vancouver

I am so excited to be offering my SpellCrafting 101 Workshop here in Vancouver on the 27th of September 2014.

It will be held at the School of Gypsy Arts and it is a full day workshop.

Places are limited click the pic below to find out more information and to register.

Spellcrafting Workshop

Tarot Reading for Today

22nd July Tarot Reading

More 30 Day Tarot Pic Challenge Photos

I have completed the 30 day Tarot Pic challenge and I am pretty pleased with myself. We had a bit of delay due to the new addition to the family but I finished it today. I’m pleased with myself because I am a Gemini with a short attention span and my track record of finishing projects isn’t great. One peek under my desk at home and you will see a bunch of unfinished Tarot pouches that need sewing that I haven’t done anything with as proof.

So to celebrate the fact that I finished it and am pretty happy with my efforts
here are some of the pics from the last 30 days and come on over to Instagram and follow me for more Tarot goodness.









Tarot Deck Exploration – The Ellis Deck

Title: The Ellis Deck

Ellis Tarot

Creator: Taylor Ellis

Publisher: Self published

Format: 78 Cards

Language: English

Size of Cards: 7cm x 12cm

What You Get: Boxed cards and a little white booklet. The booklet is not in the box as it is A5 in size. The booklet is well written and it would be great if Taylor ever wrote more about his deck.

Ellis Tarot Deck

Impressions: I am pretty sure that this is the boldest Tarot deck I own and I adore it. A very cleanly designed Tarot deck with striking colours and great symbols.

The back of the cards is a mirrored black and white image.

The Ellis Tarot Deck Back

There is even an app for the Ellis Deck and you can check it out here.

Where to Purchase: At the Ellis Tarot Site

The Ellis Tarot Deck Majors The Ellis Tarot Deck Court


Welcoming our Baby into the World

I am sure I am not the first mother or the last who would wake up at night when pregnant spiking with anxiety about child birth. It didn’t happen every night and it happened more the further along in the pregnancy I got. Thankfully it usually just took me getting a hug or even holding my partners hand to settle me and then I went back to sleep or we would talk about it a little and then I would calm. I am glad I didn’t obsessively read about child birth and about all of the things that could go wrong but I knew enough of what ‘could happen’ most to-be mothers do. Childbirth is one experience where you are in very little control of the situation. It is natural to fear an experience that we are not in control of, at least a little bit.

On Tuesday the 24th of June 2014 just before midnight my back started to ache, it was familiar as I had some Braxton hicks a couple of weeks before and they had been pretty consistent with the back pain. Our baby was sitting on my spine due to my tummy scaring which I had from surgery at birth, so my back pains weren’t unusual. Then the pain started to get worse and started to come in waves. I dealt with it for 5 hours and then woke my boyfriend letting him know that I was in pain and that today may be the day that we have our little one. He woke at 7am and made the decision to work from home as much as he could and see how I went.

The pain subsided a little by 10am so I had a shower and then went for a walk around the neighbourhood trying to get little baby to get ‘engaged’. Lucky for me it is Summer so it was a good day to get some exercise. I also tried having a bath for the back pain.

It worked, at approximately 2.30pm I was in real pain having what I hoped were contractions and not just more Braxton Hicks. The contractions were about 6 min apart and we went to the hospital. When I was seen we I found out that I was only 1 cm dilated and was given some techniques to cope with the contractions from a lovely nurse and an option for drugs (I said no) and then was sent home and told to come back when my water broke or my contractions were closer together and stronger and I couldn’t handle the pain any more.

We went and got some lunch while I talked to my Dad all the while having contractions. At home I just had to keep riding the waves while playing a game with myself, first I would try and get to 6pm then to 6.30pm etc knowing that the longer I waited the further along I would be. I was able to do this until about 8pm when I couldn’t take the pain any more and we went back to the hospital.


Our birth suite in Hospital

Our birth suite in Hospital

We went straight back to the birthing rooms and they checked me and I was only 3cm dilated. They couldn’t keep me still and offered to give me some drugs so that I could sleep as there was no telling how long this stage of labour would last and I had not had any sleep. My wonderful boyfriend went down to get some paper work and the nurse who was taking care of us Jill gave me an injection of morphine. Our little guy had other plans and with the next contraction my water broke. It was a shame that my boyfriend missed the look on my face. Jill then confirmed that I wasn’t going anywhere and they were going to move me to a birthing room. We got the big room :) So much for the pain relief, it was going to take 45 min for the medication to kick in so it didn’t ever take effect in my body.

Trying to lay down while having contractions for me was the worst. I was scissor kicking and my back was in agony so I walked most of my contractions and my boyfriend and I would dance a little as rocking helped me too. Not to mention holding (or slightly crushing) his hand also helped. So I rocked and danced and walked for the next few hours with my boyfriend in the room with me.

I tried staying off the drugs as long as I could but I really wanted to have something for the pain around 11pm when things were really getting close together and very intense. I tried the gas which I wasn’t really good at sucking down, it just made me feel dizzy and suffocated so I ended up throwing it away from my face most of the time. My boyfriend had to keep reminding me that my amazing animal noises were not in fact the correct breathing. For the most part I remembered to breathe.

The Dr who was on call was in the operating theatre giving a C section so I was going to have to wait at least 20 min for any pain relief. The nurses were prepping me to get some drugs when I had a sudden urge to want to poo (sorry folks that is what it feels like, you want to poo, to push) and I really wanted to push. I told the nurse Jill and she checked me again and I was fully dilated. No drugs for me, I was ready to start pushing and was in total disbelief.

I was already laying down but before I knew it my feet were in the stirrups and we were getting ready to push. It was sweet relief. Being able to put your energy somewhere is so much better than just having to ride the waves of contractions. I spent the majority of my time with my eyes closed focusing. When our baby’s head was crowning I was in such disbelief nurse Jill grabbed my hand and put it on his little head so that I knew it was happening. I asked for a mirror to see it and that was pretty great. It sunk in in that moment that I needed to work to get this little baby out. I asked for the mirror to be taken away so that I didn’t get my ‘if I can see it it hurts more’ thing going and I just grabbed on to my boyfriends hands (forsaking the grips on the bed, the poor man) and pushed when they told me to and held it when I was instructed. Jill our nurse pretty much delivered our baby with another Dr coming in to guide the cord off from around the neck and stitching me up. She was an amazing nurse.


Proud Dad with Baby Dominic less than an hour old

Proud Dad with Baby Dominic less than an hour old

Another nurse had to strip my gown off to put baby skin to skin and they were pretty great with letting us have hours with baby before they started to do anything like weighing etc. It also took us about a min to find out if he was a boy or a girl, we waited until the birth to find out but baby was all curled up and not facing Dad so we had to wait to find out that we had a beautiful baby boy.

Little Dominic was born at 11.59pm on the Wednesday night. He arrived within 30min of me being fully dilated. Which is pretty quick and I was not complaining. So there I was quicker than I ever thought it was going to happen laying with my little new born baby on my chest. It took Dad a couple of goes with the scissors to cut the cord, it was a thick cord. I was still out of it a bit it took me some time to realise how much I had sweated while pushing etc and everything else was happening. My afterbirth was out, I was getting a couple of small stitches. Thankfully I had no big tears.photo 1

I told my boyfriend I could do it again and was up going to the bathroom in under and hour after baby was born while Joel had skin to skin time and I also got some food. The nurses were surprised I was up and about and that I didn’t faint. Thanks to the time differences I was also able to talk to family in Australia as well which was so lovely. We were wheeled down to our room at 4am and 30 hours later we headed home with our little Dominic Kenneth Todd.

We had a pretty great birth experience. The hospital was great, the nurses were great and helpful when it came to learn how to breastfeed. Which took me over a week to get the hang of and we are both still learning. Yes giving birth hurts there is pain but it was also one of the most empowering experiences of my life. I felt strong and capable and very close to the Divine while giving birth. I am extremely thankful to my boyfriend for being the most amazing support and to all of the staff at the hospital.

So that is our birth story.


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Baby Has Arrived

So sorry all for just going M.I.A.

We welcomed our son into the world on the 25th of June and it has been a BLUR since then.

We are still trying to get a lot sorted but I will be back.

Thank you for understanding while we get used to the parent thing.



Why Reading the Tarot is an Art Form

There is a good reason that not everyone who is drawn to the Tarot will choose not to read the cards for others. Or that they will read for other people but only for a select few like friends. It is because it can be a hard art to learn and then an even harder art to carry out when you are adding the pressure of being PAID to be a Sage of advice and insight.

I wanted to touch on the four main variables that make up a Tarot Reading and why it can be a tricky business.

Elements of a Tarot Reading

The Tarot Cards

Learning the basic meaning of 78 cards can be overwhelming for a lot of people. If you can flip over each card in the deck and know your own personal meaning and/or a more traditional meaning of the card or a couple of key words that is nothing to scoff at. Then ad on the added layers of each card and it begins to multiple the complexity of each individual Tarot card. Is that Court Card that has popped up in your reading a person around the Client or is it an aspect of themselves and how do you know the difference? How can one Tarot card completely throw you in a reading and have you as the Tarot reader sit quietly hyperventilating about how it fits at all in with the other cards. These things can happen and do when you are learning the cards. The Tarot is a complex system with many layers and it can be a life times work to study them.

The Client/Querent

Tarot Reader Vintage

I remember being told something invaluable by my first amazing Tarot Teacher Gail that I am passing on to you now, people often come for a Tarot reading when they have tried nearly everything else to get clarity or are going through a hard/emotional time in their lives. Read that again and let that sink in.

It is like when people go to the Dentist, MOST people only go when they have to. I am certainly one of those. Some people do have more of a regular schedule for readings but most of the time it is during a time of need that people are coming for a reading so this can carry a WHOLE lotta energy and challenges to a Tarot reading for a professional. I have witnessed and also been the deliverer of messages to people in a reading and you just know that they are not hearing you. They are either too upset or are focused on hearing what they want to hear and nothing else. It can be so frustrating as a Tarot reader and I can imagine it is just as frustrating for the paying client. Your Client is also brining their past, their experiences, their values and views to the reading so this is another set of elements that get put in the mix. (Client can also be you) Gail makes it a rule never to see anyone who is in crisis, which is a great way to approach it when you can book people in to see you. When you are working a fair however that filter is gone.

The Tarot Reader

Tarot Reader

Witchy Woman by KLP Studios – http://www.deviantart.com/art/Witchy-Woman-438834946

Just as I mentioned about the Client above, we as Tarot professionals bring our own experiences and perspectives to a Tarot reading. When I read I go through a ritual to turn off my own stuff as much as I can and tune in for my Clients and with my Spirit Guides (I know that is working when I say something without even knowing what I just said) but sometimes my own experience will come through and at times it has been perfect when it has.

A great tip for people who are looking to go Pro is to get some readings done by professionals and see what they do and what they offer. I remember doing that when I was thinking of going Pro and I was relieved because up until that point I thought that I wasn’t giving enough to my Clients. After a few readings I found out that I was giving WAY too  much in some cases.

The other thing about Tarot readers to take into consideration is that we all have our own styles of reading. Some Tarot readers will involve you in the reading, others won’t even look at you. Some Tarot readers will tell you what each card means and others will not even reference anything in front of them. We are all different and that is what makes this art go great.

The Tarot Spread

Confused Tarot ReadingThe final added layer in the amazing layer cake that is a Tarot Reading is the Tarot spread. Tarot spreads are very personal and each reader will have their preference. Some will make up a Tarot spread on the fly for each new Client, others have a few well memorised that they use all of the time and others won’t even use any.

When you do start to learn and use Tarot spreads this can assist you getting a lot of pin point clarity for your Client and Tarot spreads are the roadmaps for Tarot readings for a lot of people but they can also be hard to learn. When a card comes up in a reading that doesn’t seem to have a meaning that matches the Tarot spread position then that can get difficult. When you get a card like the 9 of Swords in a position that is labelled as ‘Positive Aspects’ then that can be a little hard for a Tarot reader to make sense of it. There are of course things that you can do to assist with those situations when they come up but that is definitely another Blog post for another day.

A good Tarot reader can bring these elements together and provide a great reading for their Client. A GREAT Tarot reader has learnt from experience and not shied away from the prospect that some of these elements may get wild every now and then.

So if you are learning the Tarot and are pondering if reading for others is something you want to do or not, I hope this helps ease your mind in regards to just how each of us who have come before you have had to learn from our failures and successes and we often are always learning.


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