My guiding star

Lodestar is a noun meaning: someone or something that serves as a guiding principle, model, inspiration, ambition, etc.

 

 

ETYMOLOGY: From Old English lad (way) + star. A lodestar is called so because it’s used in navigation, it shows the way. Earliest documented use: 1374

 

“He was her rock, the lodestar on which she could focus.” Laura Benedict; Bliss House; Pegasus Books; 2014.

Our word for today is from wordsmith.org, where you can sign up to receive a word a day via email!

31 Days of Notable Women- Hypatia of Alexandria, first woman astronomer

stars at nightHypatia of Alexandria was a woman of grace, eloquence, beauty and wisdom. Regarded as the first woman astronomer, she was also an accomplished mathematician, inventor and  philosopher. She lived during the late 4th, early 5th centuries–a time of great change.

Source: http://www.womanastronomer.com/hypatia.htm

31 Days of Notable Women- Caroline Herschel, Discoverer of Comets

cometOn August 1, 1786, Caroline Herschel discovered her first comet and became history’s first woman with this distinction. Her comet came to be known as the “first lady’s comet” and brought with it the fame that secured her own place in history books.

Source: http://www.womanastronomer.com/caroline_herschel.htm

31 Days of Notable Women- Henrietta Swan Leavitt, astronomer

stars at nightHenrietta Swan Leavitt performed her research from an observatory’s photographic plate collection. Using the plates, she determined a star’s magnitude. There was no standard for ascertaining magnitudes at the time, so Leavitt devised a system, using “the north polar sequence” as a gage of brightness for stars during her investigations. This was quickly recognized by the scientific community as an important standard and in 1913, was adopted by the International Committee on Photographic Magnitudes.

Source: http://www.womanastronomer.com/hleavitt.htm

31 Days of Notable Women- Antonia Maury, star astronomer

stars at nightAntonia Caetana de Paiva Pereira Maury was born in Cold Spring, New York on March 21, 1866. Her father, Mytton Maury, was a protestant minister and her mother, Virginia Draper Maury, was Henry Draper’s sister. Maury graduated with honors from Vassar College in 1887 and was a student of Maria Mitchell. Maury was hired by Pickering in 1888, she was responsible for cataloguing and computing stellar spectra for stars in the northern hemisphere.

Source: http://www.womanastronomer.com/amaury.htm

31 Days of Notable Women- Maria Mitchell, astronomer

cometAstronomer Maria Mitchell was born August 1, 1818 and discovered a comet in 1847. A professor at Vassar, she successfully demanded a raise when she found out her salary was lower than her male colleagues. Maria also refused to wear cotton in protest against slavery and supported women’s suffrage.

Source: http://slate.me/1chORCl

Blessed Be on this Winter Solstice Day!

winter solsticeIn ancient times, in cultures around the world, the Winter Solstice was the holiest time of the year. As the shortest and darkest day of the year; it is a powerful planetary time time of endings and new beginnings. The word “solstice” comes from the Latin words “sol” for sun and “sisto” for “stop.”

This year Dec. 21, 2013 at 12:11 p.m. EST, It is this moment (when the earth stands still for an instant on its elliptical journey around the sun) that the ancient mystics have recognized and honored as sacred. This is an EXCELLENT day to put forth thoughts, prayers, intention into the new year. For this day will magnify your dreams into 2014. It is a time to let go of the old and embrace a new cycle in life.

Even those not inclined to mystical musings mark this day as special. “It’s a cosmological crisis point, in which the outcome of the coming year would be determined,” says Edwin Krupp, director of the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles, says. Happy Solstice fellow soul travelers!!