5 Tips For A Better Communication Using Mercury Retrograde

10 08 2010

© August 2010 by Fabienne Lopez

Mercury retrogradeMercury Retrograde in Virgo: Reviewing our Communication Patterns

Mercury retrogrades 3 or 4 times a year. The third Mercury retrograde will happen in Virgo (8/20/2010 to 9/12/2010). Combining Mercury (communication, thought) with the qualities of Virgo (precision, logical, quick, practical and common sense) and you have a recipe on learning how to communicate with less static in our daily communications. A good usage of Mercury retrograde in a Virgo period.

Communication skills are something we are always emphasizing in our workplace, resumes, daily life etc… But how many of us are really capable of effective communication? How many of us know how to communicate in a way that conveys the message clearly?

The Emotional Cost of Miscommunication

At the same time, we complain about being misinterpreted and misunderstood. Ineffective communication skills can cause havoc and impact the quality of our life. The book by John Gray, Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus, illustrated the difficulties and the cost both genders encounter because of poor communications in the increase of conflicts, misunderstanding, hurt and resentment. No wonder communication skills are so valued. So much can be lost in translation—the coding and encoding that is done between sender and receiver. Yet, our ability to effectively translate and to clearly convey our intention and message is extremely important in our daily life. It is this combination of both clearly conveying and accurately receiving that makes up effective communication.

Inspired by the upcoming Mercury Retrograde in Virgo, here are 5 tips to improve communication

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Soccer and The 12 Signs of Astrology

1 07 2010

©July 2010 by Fabienne Lopez

2010 World Cup I am glued to the TV watching every game of the Brazilian soccer team in the World Cup. As I surfed the Internet during half time, I found, on Saturnalia, this article

in Portuguese on soccer and the 12 signs of the Brazilian team, written by El Gatón.

I translated the original post from Portuguese and adapted it for my English-speaking readers.

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Water and Fire by Darby Costello – A Book Review (Sort of)

18 05 2010

© May  2010 by Fabienne Lopez

When I first started studying Astrology one of the first things I encountered was the 4 elemental signs: Fire, Water, Earth and Air.

Here’s a brief explanation of how the elements relate to different functions in our personalities and temperaments: Fire is linked to action; Earth to common sense; Air to the thinking function and Water to feelings. That was all I was exposed to. Maybe every now and then some article would list a few keywords but had no in depth explanations.

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2010 Astrological Forecast

20 12 2009

©December 2009 by Fabienne Lopez

It’s the end of the year. Time for astrological yearly predictions! I must confess I am a junkie. I love and relish astrological yearly predictions. Come November, I start scanning the internet to find sites that will tell me all about what’s going to happen to Aries (my sun sign) in the coming year. My favorite site to get my forecast fix is The Horoscope Junkie. There I get to choose among dozens of sites. I am in paradise for a couple of hours.

I only wrote a yearly column once. But then, I was a young and inexperienced astrologer who did not know better. It was a lot of work to condense and abstract all the major transits for the year and to repeat the feat 12 times! Never again.

Anyway, I thought I would do a spin off and try some astrological humor.

Aries: Get ready for a big adventure! This year will be all about you! Go get your rifle, sword or whatever sharp shiny metal object you are happy with. With Jupiter and Uranus in your sign, this could be THE year for going on a hero’s journey (as opposed to all those past years) and slay that dragon!

Taurus: In 2010, you will benefit through friends both financially and emotionally. That means more money to buy those soft, plushy, luxurious things you love so much. And more money to spend on gardening tools and seeds.

Gemini: This will be the year where the newest communication device will be launched. You will be able to go, “Bladdity-blah-blah,”  to your heart’s content!  Better than Twitter, Facebook, Iphone, text messaging and email.

Cancer: The coming year will see the rebound of the real estate market and you will be able to afford the kitchen of your dreams, exactly like the one Mom used to cook in.

Leo: Rest assured, this Not the year were you will fall off your throne and lose your crown.

Virgo: The current stats indicate there is a fifty-fifty chance of the predictions for your sign will come true or vice-versa.

Libra: Time to get serious with that relationship. With Saturn in your sign for the next couple of years, no more weighting the pros and cons. You will have to choose between all the suitable candidates you met at the “How to Find True Love” seminar. I know they are all excellent husband material. But you know you have to make a decision.

Scorpio: Smoky eyes, 2010 will be the year were you will overcome your fear of losing control. Yeah! NO more voodoo dolls!

Sagittarius: Great opportunities will arise as soon as you realize that your happiness no longer depends so much on possessions, but rather on the deeper meaning associated with things symbolic of love and sharing. Just wait and see!

Capricorn: Yes, I know, my dear Cap! In 2009 you did not get the bonus you worked so hard for. What can I say, Wall Street, Main Street, it’s a dead end street war. Fear not! With Puto in your sign, your expense account should rebound this year and you will be able to enjoy your corporate perks again. Security is the key word for 2010.

Aquarius: Your research on the validity of astrology will finally pay off and you will be able to reform the current economic structures and improve social conventions.

Pisces: With Jupiter in your sign for part of the year, your connection with the Divine will be magnified a thousand fold. You will be able to chase more dreams, expand your compassion and complete any 12 steps program of your choice!

Disclaimer: The 2010 forecast in this post is a caricature. It is meant to provide some smiles during this time of the year which can be stressful. It is a gentle poke to all 12 signs not to take themselves so seriously. 😀

Your Holiday Alcohoroscope

12 12 2009

December 2009 by Fabienne Lopez

As the Holiday season is approaching its peak, so it the frenzy of holiday parties. If you are tired of the same old wine, beer or mixed drink staples for your gathering, pour out those stale beverage choices and grab hold of the most fitting refresher for your astrological sign.

Art Credit: Alice-Marie PhotographyArt Credit: Alice-Marie Photography

Aries:  Male or female tend to like manly drinks like whisky, bourbon, gin or scotch on the rocks. Aries woman also have a preference for Cosmopolitan. Remember they can outdo anybody as far as shots are concerned. To recover after a night’s party, plenty of Gatorade.
Taurus: Taurus prefers to drink at a leisurely pace, aiming for a mellow glow rather than a full-on zonk. A vintage pink wine or classic brand beers like Sam Adams, Budweiser, Heineken or Beck’s will suit their mood.
Gemini: Mixed drinks in order to avoid boring repetition. Wine tastings and drink sampling will also keep Gemini’s talking and entertained.
Cancer: House parties are Cancer’s favorite as well as any cocktail that shows the best local produce of a region. Think sangria, mojito or margarita will put a crab in heaven.

Leo: Crown Royal. Need I to say anything more?
Virgo: Specialty wines and micro-brewed beers may appeal to Virgo’s love of craft. Cocktails with green garnishes or themes such as mint juleps, Midori Sours and Grasshoppers may pique your Virgin’s curiosity and love of all things earthy. And for the health conscious Virgo, milk. It does the body good you know.
Libra: The elegance of champagne and champagne cocktails (think Mimosas) consumed in stylish glassware in a pleasant environment.
Scorpio: Sex on the beach, screwdriver, screaming orgasm
Sagittarius: Imported beers. The  travel-loving Archer might be intrigued by the flair of international drinks such as the popular Brazilian Caipirinha, Moscow mules, Singapore slings, perhaps even a Long Island iced tea.

Capricorn: Capricorn likes cocktails just like they are — classic and on the dry side. Gin and tonic, standard martinis (prepared with gin, please, not vodka, stirred not shaken) and drinks without frills or fruit garnishes make Cap’s happy. And do not listen to them if they tell you they only drink on social occasions.
Aquarius: Aquarius is likely to order stuff most people have never heard of a Satan’s whiskers, a negroni, an Arthur Tompkins. They like to stump the bartender. This sign rules the color electric blue and would be pleased by any tipple featuring blue curacao. Since their taste tends towards the quirky, they are still probably doing “Jello shots”.
Pisces: Whatever your drinking.  Pretty much anything will satisfy a Pisces in a pinch. Pisces picks up subtle flavors better than anyone, and will especially enjoy wine tasting or sampling cocktails. Favorite summer drinks of the Fish may include Fish House Punch (rum, Cognac, lemon juice, peach brandy).

Art credit: Photos from  Alice-Marie Photography – from Flickr Common Creatives

12 Signs, 365 days of shoes

19 11 2009

© November19, 2009 by Fabienne Lopez

Those who know me are aware that I am a shoe fanatic. I get teased regularly about it, because nothing in my persona would lend to this secret passion.  But I am a shoe passionate and can recognize brands and models in a single look. The same way I am good at guessing people’s sun sign. So I decided to have a bit of fun and put my knowledge to good use and match the zodiac sign with their respective shoes. While written with women in mind, men you may find something in her for you too!


  • Shoes for every sign

    Aries: Red shoes. Simple, clean straight forward line that allows the Arian girl to go from Point A to Point B in the fastest way. Think the red boots of Wonder Woman.

  • Taurus: Practical, sturdy, well made, versatile, durable are some of the attributes a Taurus woman will look for in her shoes. Good quality for a good price. Something beautiful in leather and earth tones that can do double duty are a must. Picture Nanny McPhee.
  • Gemini: The fun, flirty, chatty, trendy, charming side of a Gemini woman will be reflected in her choice of shoes.  She will follow the latest trends and will always be wearing a pair that will be a conversation starter. Imagine Carrie Bradshaw’s shoe closet.
  • Cancer: Your lunar nature wears your old favorites shoes until they fall apart. They feel comfortable, comfy and soothing in colors of the moon and the sea. The hard-shell nature of the Cancerian woman finds its perfect expression in the protection of boots, the toughest footwear to break through. Her tender nurturing side shows in her fuzzy wuzzy slippers.
  • Leo: Show off, standout, sexy shoes are what the “Queen of the Jungle” requires of her shoes. High heels and stiletto in attention-grabbing gold color is a must so it can match the sunny side of her personality.
  • Virgo: Like the other earth signs, Virgoans need practical serviceable shoes with superior craftsmanship. Think handmade with an eye for hidden details and earth tones. For these reasons, Virgo’s will have some of the most practical shoes known to man, such as comfy ballet flats and slide-on mules to simplify the many tasks that they undertake during an average day.
  • Libra: Ruled by Venus, Libra women need dainty, feminine shoes in hues of blue, purple and lavender with lots of lace and floral prints. No heavy platforms or clogs for you.

  • Scorpio: Sexy, sensuous footwear is a given for a Scorpio. Red, black, silver or white patent-leather, high-heeled, thigh-high boots. Case in point: Hale Berry as Catwoman!As a kid, I had a pair of yellow patent shoe that I lived to death
  • Sagittarius: “Shoes for the road” is Sagittarius motto. Always on the go, a Sagittarian needs comfy footwear that holds up to her adventurous side. Midnight blue, dark plum snazzy sneakers are sure to please any Sagittarian. Nike’s swoosh and tagline “Just do it” might have been invented with a Sagittarian in mind.

  • Capricorn: Career shoes organized by color, height and purpose are the trademark of a Capricorn woman. Since Capricorn’s are somewhat practical, shoes in a classic, practical style in earth tones and/or black are an ideal choice. Ideally, a stable black pump in classic, durable leather will relay to the world that the wearer means business. The term “casual elegance” must have been coined for you. You like timeless shoes with subtle, stylish touches.

  • Aquarius: Flip Flops are what Aquarians like to wear best! But they are not above wearing any style that is retro – think 1940’s era shoes, original canvas shoes featuring colorful peace signs, fun designs or eccentric colors.  Electric blue, silver, off-white or almond are some of your favorite colors.

  • Pisces: Pisces rule the feet. You’re the Cinderella of footwear, forever searching for the dreamiest glass slipper. Therefore, you dream of the latest jeweled, rhinestone-studded, jewels dangling flats that allow you to dance until the stroke of midnight.


Can you tell if this rings true? It might not for your sun sign, but you might see yourself reflected in your rising sign. As an Aries woman, I am not always attracted to red shoes. But my Pisces rising loves  shinny flats.


If interested, contact me for additional fashion tips based on astrology! Fabienne@astro-brasil.com

Credits: Photos are from Flickr Creative Commons