It’s dim and grey and almost no wind. It’s 42F, although it seemed *so* much warmer yesterday. I’m glad the cold spell has changed! …I say that and then I remember our son who’s in Alaska telling me, “Yeah, the wind dropped, the sun came out and I went out in my t-shirt since it was above zero.”
The sunshine was so pretty yesterday, especially in the afternoon where the mist that had never quite lifted shone silvery in the pale light. There were clouds, but thin and mostly high cirrus, or very wispy. It was 56F at 2pm when I finally closed the door. It was *so* much warmer than it’s been that I never turned on the heat! 50’s I can handle because I dress for it. 30’s are more of an issue…..
We got the shop open a little late, and had no sooner gotten everything sorted out, than Tempus got a call that he was heading for cleaning a place in Depoe Bay instead of shoveling sand. It’d be nice to have a little more warning than that, but…..
I started in to re-setting the shop. Tempus had moved some of the boxes from the front so things are gradually settling to their regular configurations. I noticed as I was working up front that the crocosmia corms are getting ready to sprout. This is the *perfect* time of year to plant them. If you have newspapers or cardboard, lay down a thick layer for mulch, spot the corms every 6 inches or so, sprinkle some dirt over the corms and then barkdust on top. If you get the 3-5 year corms, those will be a huge display this summer. The 2-3 year corms will give you a lot of foliage and some beautiful flowers. With the 1 year corms you’ll have some flowers this summer, but in 3 years an incredible display.So I’m going to run a SPECIAL! If you come in before January 15 and buy a bag of the corms you can have them for $2.50 instead of $3 per bag and I’ll even honor the 6 for the price of 5 and that means 6 packages for $12.50 instead of $18! I’ll have potted ones in the spring, but those will be $5 per pot.
I had people in and out all day. It was fairly quiet in town, but a few folks were out wandering through, enjoying the nice weather. Mary stopped in during the afternoon, and a couple of the local teens who stop by for supplies and to chat. Most of the rest were tourists out for an afternoon’s shopping.
Tempus made me a lovely sandwich for lunch. We had a couple left of the onion buns and some leftover hamburger which he mixed up in a sauce of mayo and catsup and some other things, added sweet pickles and a slice of cheese….and I wasn’t hungry *all* afternoon! Well, scratch that…. I wasn’t physically hungry, but the aromas from the Chinese restaurant across the street were making me drool, anyway.
I set up some orders and then settled to working up some more clipart. I found a “stash” that I had meant to put up, and uploaded them (you’re seeing some here today!) and then made a new “Silliness” icon, so that the clipped circle would stop bothering me. 🙂 I also got a new Imbolc border put together so that the Magick section is easy to find again.
As the sun was going down the clouds lit up and silvered, then faded to gilt and then darkness. I guess we’re going to have rain again today. Tempus didn’t get back until past 5:30. He got the garland down and the blown lights skinned off it and we closed up.
We ended up going to the China Restaurant for supper. After the lovely aromas and since we haven’t really been out to dinner since our anniversary, well…. So we both had sweet & sour chicken, BBQ pork and fried rice after egg flower soup for me and hot and sour for Tempus and it was *good*! We were startled to see that there were new owners of the restaurant, but the guy was a well-known chef in San Francisco and decided to strike out on his own. They’ve been in business just a few days. I had noticed the curtains on the windows, but only to think that they were remodeling over the winter. He’s a nice guy, too. We had a good chat while we were eating about business and how things are going and a little about ethnic cuisine when it hits the USA….rueful laughing on both parts. Then he served us an extra, prawns in honey and walnut sauce. That one would have done justice to a 5 star restaurant! I’m going to have a rough time keeping from spending money over there. So I’m telling you all about it instead! We got some copies of their menu to put up on the bulletin board, too, so that’ll remind you when you stop in. They’re definitely worth it!
Herbs at 11 and Crystals at Noon will be on the current projects. That means for Herbs we’ll be potting a number of things. Crystals will be examining the contents of the two big tumblers and re-setting them, plus we have more agates to work on. Sewing workshop at 3pm will be a “bring your own” since there aren’t any current requests. I’m going to try to work on the biscornu. Remember that? Yeah, the holidays really got in the way.
My oldest son took this pic in the grocery store and it brought up a funny memory. When Amor was 5 and just starting kindergarten the kids were all getting breakfast at school. Sash walked to school with him and they got breakfast, but Sash introduced him to his teacher and left for his own class. Amor finished his breakfast and then walked up to one of the cafeteria ladies and said, “Could I please have another pear? I’m a Bartlett, you know!” She was charmed and gave him another 1/2, even though they weren’t supposed to. Puns at that age! <sigh>
Today is the Epiphanios of the goddess Kore, the night when she gives birth to Aeon, the year-god. Wilson’s Almanac has some good information here: http://www.wilsonsalmanac.com/book/jan5.html search for “epiphanios”
Love & Light,
Today’s Astro & Calendar
The Moon is a Waning Crescent. Waning Moon Magick – From the Full Moon to the New is a time for study, meditation, and magic designed to banish harmful energies and habits, for ridding oneself of addictions, illness or negativity. Phase ends at the Tide Change on 1/11 at 11:44am. Waning Crescent Moon –Best time for beginning introspective magicks that are more long term. Phase ends on 1/7 at 2:44am.
Goddess Month of Hestia runs from 12/26 – 1/22
Celtic Tree Month of Beth Birch Dec 24 – Jan 20
Runic half-month of Eoh 12/28-1/12 Represents the dead, and the yew tree, sacred to Winter shamanism. Nigel Pennick, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books
Runic half-month of Peorth, 1/13-1/27. Feast of Brewing, Druidic Source: The Phoenix and Arabeth 1992 Calendar.
©2012 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Beth Birch Dec 24 – Jan 20 Beith – (BEH), birch – The silver birch (Betula pendula Roth) is the most common tree birch in much of Europe. It grows up to 30 m (100 feet) high, but is more often found in spreading clumps on sandy soils. It is one of the first trees to colonize an area after a mature forest is cut; this is probably a large part of its symbolic connection with new beginnings. It is cultivated in North America, often under the name of weeping birch. The common birch (B. pubescens Ehrh.) is almost as widespread as the silver birch, but grows primarily on acid or peaty soils. It can reach 20 m (65 feet) in height. Birches are members of the Birch family (Betulaceae). Curtis Clark
Beth – Birch – Ogam letter correspondences –
Meaning: New Beginnings; Changes; Purification.
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible Sa 5 High 5:51 AM 7.9 7:52 AM Rise 12:57 AM 53 5 Low 12:45 PM 1.7 4:52 PM Set 11:52 AM 5 High 6:35 PM 5.6
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – In the Name of the Maiden: I will speak my truth fearlessly.
Journal Prompt – What does this quote say to you? – If a man empties his purse into his head, no man can take it away from him. An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest. — Benjamin Franklin
~ I’ve never had a humble opinion. If you’ve got an opinion, why be humble about it? – Joan Baez
~ Love does not consist in gazing at each other but in looking outward together in the same direction. – Antoine Marie Roger de Saint-Exupery, French aviator and writer
~ Miracles occur naturally as expressions of love. The real miracle is the love that inspires them. In this sense everything that comes from love is miracle.” Marianne Williamson
~ Never quit. Use each setback, each disappointment as a cue to push on ahead with more determination than ever before. – Ralph Marston
I do not belong to the land, or to any known or unknown sea.
Nature cannot own or claim me, nor can heaven;
Nor can India, China, Bulgaria.
My birthplace is placelessness,
My sign to have and give no sign.
You say you see my mouth, ears, eyes, nose – they are not mine. – Jalal-ud-Din Rumi (Translated by Andrew Harvey from A Year of Rumi)
Magick – Imbolc Recipes
Scottish Barley and Mushroom Casserole – VEGETARIAN
2 medium cooking onions, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 pound mushroom, thinly sliced
1 cup pearl barley
1 tablespoon dried basil
3 cups vegetable stock
salt and pepper to taste
chopped fresh parsley
Preheat oven to 375º. In a stovetop to oven-safe casserole dish with a lid, sauté onions and garlic until translucent and browned. Add mushrooms and cook until tender. Add barley, basil, salt, pepper and stock. Bring to a boil.
Cover and put in oven. Cook until barley is tender, about 45 – 50 minutes. Toss with parsley and serve.
Winter’s Light Creamed Cabbage – Adapted by Akasha Ap Emrys
1 lb. pre-cooked ham, 1″ cubed or shredded
1 heaping tsp. flour
1 firm white cabbage
1/2 tsp. each salt & pepper
1 cup cream
Cut cabbage in half, then into four (small head) or six (large head) pieces. Plunge into a pot of boiling water and cook for 5 minutes. Drain and run under cold tap water. Drain again. Slice across the grain in 1/4 inch strips. Melt a little butter/margarine in a sauce pan and add shredded cabbage. Toss well, and keep stirring all the time. Add salt, pepper, and a dash of grated nutmeg. Next add the heaping teaspoon of flour, mix well. Add cream, still stirring, and let it come to a boil. Add the cubed or shredded ham, and lower the heat. Cover the sauce pan and let the mixture simmer for about 30 minutes. Serve hot. Makes 6-8 servings.
Veggie Kedgeree – VEGETARIAN
1 ½ cup dried lentils
1 cup rice
5 cups water
2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons butter
¾ teaspoon cloves or 3 whole cloves
½ teaspoon cumin
¼ teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cardamom
1/8 teaspoon coriander
1/8 teaspoon turmeric
In a large pan, bring the water and salt to a boil. In the meantime, rinse and drain the lentils. Throw out any stones or impurities. Do the same for the rice.
Toss the lentils and rice into the pan, mix well and simmer for 20 minutes. Leave the heat a little higher than you would for rice alone. It should be dry but not too dry. If still wet, let sit for a few minutes with the cover off. If too dry, add a little hot water.
Heat the butter in a small skillet. You can leave it on a very low heat for 20 minutes while the rest cooks. When the rice and lentils are done, stir the spices into the butter and blend. Then stir this mixture into the rice and lentils and mix well.
Antioxidant Loaded Winter Veggie Soup (4 views) From: herbalmuse, Inspired by Soup Makes the Meal, by Ken Haedrich (Harvard Common Press, 2001).
The author of this wonderful cookbook says he’s been making this light restorative soup for his kids when they’re sick for years–but that it’s so delicious, you don’t have to be sick to enjoy it! Either way, its luscious fragrance helps to clear the sinuses, with potatoes that are soothing to the digestive tract and a delightful broth filled with spinach, parsley, leeks, and garlic for minerals, vitamins, and healing antioxidants plus some winter root vegetables for sweetness.
A steaming bowlful on a cold winter day is so wonderfully soothing and comforting–and it is very quick to make.
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large leek, well-washed, white parts only, chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
1 large potato, diced
1 parsnip, peeled and diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
5 cups vegetable stock
Salt to taste
Handful fresh parsley leaves, chopped
Large handful fresh spinach leaves (around 4 ounces), rinsed and coarsely chopped
Freshly-ground black pepper, to taste
1. In a soup pot, heat the olive oil and add the leeks, carrot, potato, parsnip, and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat about 5 minutes. Add stock and salt to taste, then bring to a simmer.
2. Simmer soup, partially covered, for about 5 minutes, then stir in parsley and spinach. Simmer, partially covered, about 5 more minutes. Add pepper to taste and serve piping hot.
Serves 4 to 5.