I am very excited about the lovely job that Michelle from Shabby Creations has done in bringing my ideas of a new look for Under Her Starry Mantle to life. I had many little, incessant thoughts and desires, but Michelle accommodated them all beautifully!
This blog is dedicated to Our Lady of Guadalupe and so the new look is my more personal reflection of that.Our Lady's image rests in a mexican retablo frame, surrounded by her miraculous starry mantle that Our Heavenly Mother wishes to envelope us all in:
"Are you not in the fold of my mantle?..."
I also love herbs and have started to blog a bit more about them so it was a fitting choice to include an image of the Lady's Mantle herb. This is a beautiful, healing herb for women, one that I brew up into a tea regularly. A famous Catholic priest, Abbe Kuenzle once said,
"Through early and prolonged application of this medicinal herb, two thirds of all operations performed on women would be quite unnecessary, since it heals all inflammations of the abdomen, fever, burning, suppuration, ulcers and hernia. Every woman in childbirth should drink much of this tea. Some children would still have their mother, some stricken widower his wife, had they but known this herb. "
The name given to this herb due to the plant's very shapely and pleated leaves that look like a lady's cloak in medieval times. The cloak was thought suitable for the Virgin Mary and the original common name of the herb was - 'Our-Lady's-Mantle' in honor of Mary. Of course it ties into the blog's theme in a lovely way. You can see the herb in the header in colour and in the background of the main text section, in a slightly darker shade than the background colour, along the sides.
The mantle flows over and down the side of a painting of the scene where Juan Diego is walking to meet Our Lady (Our Lady is seen in the top, left hand corner of the picture) it has been given a worn, antique look with the most beautiful, motherly words in the world scripted over the top:
"Am I not here, I who am your mother? Are you not under my shadow and watch? Am I not the source of your joy? Are you not in the fold of my mantle, in the crossing of my arms?"
Castilian roses fell from Juan's tilma at the moment the image of Our Lady miraculously appeared, the press dried roses in the header are in rememberance of that scene.
The background on the very far sides, behind the main text area is part of Our Lady of Guadalupe's dress, that is full of symbolic meaning.
My beloved bottle of Loreto Holy Oil features as well as my vintage reproduction Guadalupian rosary beads I made last year.
The title over the top of the header, "Under Her Starry Mantle" I tried to match a font that was similar to the calligraphy script of the Nican Mopohua the ancient account of the apparition written in his own hand in 1649 by Valeriano in the mexican language, Nahuatl.
I hope you like the new look as well!
I had a series of things go wrong on St Patrick's Day, too numerous to mention including the loss of a tooth that required surgical removal, deleting my whole post by accident, then re-writing and having the delete button jam and eat up my post before I discovered what was doing it, accidently sending my St Patrick's Breastplate video to Catholic Cuisine, oh yes, it just goes on! I hope to blog sometime soon about St Patrick.
We are also caught up in state elections down under in our state, in which we are heavily involved with, (please offer an Ave for our election, that Godly people are elected) so we didn't get to celebrate our beloved St Joseph's feastday as we would have hoped, we always have so much to thank him for! I hope your St Joseph's day is a blessed one!