Such beautiful sunshine as we were heading for the shop, yesterday! We had pulled out some plants to re-pot, so there was scurrying back and forth as we were getting into the car. It was 74F on the phone company thermometer when we pulled into our parking spot! We had almost everything in and the shop open when Marius showed up and we chatted for a few. He was on his way to a meeting and he and Tempus decided that they would work together in the afternoon and he’d stop back by to pick him up. Tempus had to run back up to the house. We had the plants, the pots, the trays even, but forgot the potting soil…
So, I checked in the Shoyeido order. We have a lot more charcoal and incense assortments. We even have “February” incense back in stock! We also got two beautiful ash catchers made of cherry wood. …and then I sat down and made up a bunch of the little 50 cent bags of charcoal.
We ended up not doing much of a Crystals Workshop, checked the tumblers and got to talking and then Tempus went out and watered the plants.
We were busy for a couple of hours with customers, and then the Duckmeister was in for a bit and then Marius picked Tempus up and they took off. We were still busy, mostly folks browsing, but a few sales and then Tempus was back at 4:30.
One of our serious students dropped in during the afternoon to return some books. She has to head back to Utah. We’re going to miss you, Sam!
Mary had been in and dropped off some magazines, that Marius snatched up to read as soon as he got there. 🙂 Tempus was tracking down a couple of projects for awhile and then I realized where he had put them and found them for him. Rowan showed up a bit after that and they went across the street to Lil Joe’s.
The sunlight only just left the shop at 5pm. The days are definitely getting longer. It was still 66F. It had been marvelously misty all day, not fog, mind, just mist! Just enough to make things in the distance look “mist-erious”, as Tempus says… The temp dropped quickly after sunset. There was a lovely pink strip of cloud at about 5:30 and it was only 51…. at that point.
We all went across to the China Restaurant for supper and had a great time talking, although I had to shut myself up twice about my embroidery projects. 🙂 Tempus and I finished closing up the shop, came home and I crawled into bed, waking around midnight. I ended up doing research into Linden spp. and then wrote for a bit.
Today is the early day. The Job Corps bunch shows up between 9:30 and 10, so Brea and I will be doing classes until about noon. After that, well… it depends a little on how long Tempus sleeps. I need him to come home to work on getting more boxes in and/or sorted, but if he snoozes well into the afternoon, we might end up doing inventory.
Just a batch of fun pix that have been showing up….
Today’s Plant is the Linden Tree, tilia species. It is also called lime tree (no relation to the fruit) and basswood. It is the national tree of many countries, particularly in Central Europe, (the Czech Republic!) where at one time it was sacred and councils met at the sacred linden, just as in the British Isles they met at an oak. The wood is widely used for carving and for guitars. The inner bark of the tree has been used in making fabric. The flowers, which smell delicious, are used in teas and perfumes and a valuable honey is derived from them. The flowers, leaves, wood, and charcoal (obtained from the wood) are used for medicinal purposes. – Feminine, Jupiter, Water, Taurus – Bark used for protection, leaves and flowers for immortality. Good Fortune, Sleep and Love. Hang branches over the door for protection or grow in the garden. Use in love spells/mixtures and protection spells & incenses. Mix equal parts Linden and Lavender flowers and place in a sachet under your pillowcase to relieve insomnia. Keep Linden on a table to release the energies needed to keep the spirit alive and healthy.
Today’s feast is the anniversary of the day in 1993 that Vaclav Havel was elected President of the Czech Republic. How many playwrights, even dissident playwrights, become president? How many countries would *pick* a playwright as president? Maybe the country whose anthem is this:
Where is my home, where is my home?
Water roars across the meadows,
Pinewoods rustle among crags,
The garden is glorious with spring blossom,
Paradise on earth it is to see.
And this is that beautiful land,
The Czech land, my home,
The Czech land, my home!
No war, no battles, no glorious gore…. More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vaclav_Havel and on the republic here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Czech_Republic and then anthem here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Czech_national_anthem A youtube of the anthem http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPTwOZWnm6E and another with some lovely sights http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qn87PI9K99M Or even better still for today…. The version from Havel’s state funeral. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zL1fBSyXI5U Can you tell that I love my ancestral home?
The shop opens at 11am, although we’ll be there earlier than that! Winter hours are 11am-5pm Thursday through Monday. Need something off hours? Give us a call at 541-563-7154 or Facebook or email at firstname.lastname@example.org If we’re supposed to be closed, but it looks like we’re there, try the door. If it’s open, the shop’s open! In case of bad weather, check here at the blog for updates, on our Facebook as Ancient Light, or call the shop.
Love & Light,
Today’s Astro & Calendar
The moon is a Waning Crescent moving into Hecate’s Brooch at 1:39am. – 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. Remember: what goes up must come down. Phase ends at the New M0on on 1/30. Waning Crescent Moon –Best time for beginning introspective magicks that are more long term (full year cycle) A good time for beginning knot magicks to “bind up” addictions and illness (finish just before the Tide Change of Dark to New) and “tying up loose ends” God/dess aspects – Demeter weeping for her Daughter, Mabon, Arachne Tyr. Phase ends on 1/26 at 1:39am. Hecate’s Brooch – 3-5 days before New Moon – Best time for Releasing Rituals. It’s the last few days before the new moon, the time of Hecate’s Brooch. This is the time that if you’re going to throw something out, or sweep the floors, or take stuff to Good Will, do it! Rid yourself of negativity and work on the letting go process. Release the old, removing unwanted negative energies, addictions, or illness. Do physical and psychic cleansings. Good for wisdom & psychic ability. Goddess Aspect: Crone Associated God/desses: Callieach, Banshee, Hecate, Baba Yaga, Ereshkigal, Thoth. Phase ends on 1/29 at 1:39am.
This is the frigid time of year when the Little Dipper (mostly dim) hangs straight down from Polaris shortly after dark. Look due north.
Mercury (magnitude –0.9) is having an excellent apparition in the evening twilight. Look low in the west-southwest as twilight fades. (Don’t confuse Mercury with fainter Fomalhaut twinkling off to its left in the southwest.)
Supernova in M82! An 11th-magnitude supernova has gone off in the galaxy M82 in Ursa Major. It’s in the evening sky in reach of amateur telescopes, and it may not be done brightening yet. See our article Bright Supernova in M82, with ongoing updates. http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/home/Bright-Supernova-in-M82-241477661.html
Goddess Month of of Bridhe, runs from 1/23 – 2/19
Celtic Tree month of Luis/Rowan – Jan 21-Feb 17 – Luis (LWEESH)/rowan
Runic half-month of Perdhro/ Peorth, 1/13-1/27. – Feast of Brewing, Druidic, Source: The Phoenix and Arabeth 1992 Calendar.
©2014 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Luis/Rowan – Jan 21-Feb 17 – Luis (LWEESH)/rowan – The rowan, or mountain ash (Sorbus aucuparia L.) is related to serviceberries. The red berries were historically used to lure birds into traps, and the specific epithet aucuparia comes from words meaning “to catch a bird”. Birds are also responsible for dispersing the seeds. Rowans thrive in poor soils and colonize disturbed areas. In some parts of Europe they are most common around ancient settlements, either because of their weedy nature or because they were planted. Rowans flower in May. They grow to 15 m (50 feet) and are members of the Rose family (Rosaceae). They are cultivated in North America, especially in the northeast.
Luis – Rowan Ogam letter correspondences
Color: Grey and Red
Meaning: Controlling your life; Protection against control by others.
Quert – Apple Ogam letter correspondences to study this month
Meaning: A choice must be made
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Good health is merely the slowest possible rate at which one can die.
~ Bad behavior, poor practice and anti-social tendencies do not mean your chosen path is not Feri. It simply means you suck at practicing Feri. – Anaar
~ The idea is to write it so that people hear it and it slides through the brain and goes straight to the heart. – Maya Angelou
~ Hope is the dream of a waking man. – Aristotle
~ Dishonesty is so grasping it would deceive God himself, were it possible. – George Bancroft (1800-1891) US historian, statesman
Now, the energies of nature are present in the outer world, but also inside ourselves, because we are particles of nature. So when you are meditating on a deity, you are meditating on powers of your own spirit and psyche, and on powers that are also out there. One finds in practically all the religious traditions of the world (with a few exceptions) that the aim is for the individual to put himself into accord with nature, with his nature, and that’s both physical and psychological health. These are what in our traditions are called the nature religions, and the deities are not final terms; they are references to spiritual energies. So when mythology is properly understood, the object that is revered and venerated is not a final term; the object venerated is a personification of an energy that dwells within the individual, and the reference of mythology has two modes—that of consciousness and that of the spiritual potentials within the individual. – Joseph Campbell, Goddesses: Mysteries of the Sacred Feminine
Sun Paper Plate – This is a simple craft made from a paper plate and a child’s handprint cutouts.
A paper plate
Yellow construction paper
Glue (or a stapler)
Crayons, paint or markers
Googly eyes (optional)
Color in the sun, drawing a mouth and a nose. Either draw the eyes or glue on googly eyes.
Brigit’s Bed – (For Imbolc) – http://members.aol.com/ivycleartoes/bed.html
Basket, wood box, or doll cradle
Padding to make receptacle like a bed
Figure to represent the goddess Brigit
Figure to represent the god (any god)
Directions – Dress up the basket, box, or cradle like a bed, and make it comfortable. Put it by the fireplace or the most desirable, warm spot in the house, as if you were waiting for a visitor to lie in it. Make a figurine to represent Brigit; this can be made with a bundle of oats, rushes, straw, or any grain or craft material fashioned into a loop or slightly human shape, and can be simple or ornate, and even can be decorated with clothes of any sort, preferably white with red ribbons. (One traditional adornment is a sparkling crystal around her neck.) You can make a god figurine by making a fruitwood wand with a pinecone attached to the end, decorated with ribbons, or any male-oriented symbol that works for you.
Ritual use – Place the Brigit’s Bed in the most inviting, warmest place in the house and imagine that you will really be visited by Brigit, the night before or night of Imbolc. Leave an aromatic, hot snack out for her by the bed. As you invite the spirit of the goddess to inhabit the bed, ask for her blessings of fertility and healing. Put the dolly in the bed, and offer the company of the god-wand. For an extra ounce of fertility blessing, the wand can be crossed like an X over the dolly to form the Norse rune Gifu. Add nuts to the bed to stimulate fertility. Use the Brigit dolly as a talisman of protection and fertility through the winter, and either recycle her for Lughnasadh or return her to the earth if she is made of grain.
To echo the Goddess’s symbol of the serpent, make this candleholder, which resembles a coiled snake. Follow directions for making a mold for taper candles, with the following differences:
- Size your holder by wrapping a paper cylinder around whatever candle you intend to use. Remove candle before proceeding further.
- Dough ropes should be about 1/2 inch wide and a foot long. If candleholder is taller than 4 inches, use toothpicks for extra support.
- Make the bottom by coiling a rope into a small circle.
- After the paper cylinder has been removed, use your candle to gently test of the open end of the candleholder is large enough to accommodate the candle. If it’s too small, delicately press the opening wider. If it’s too large, fill in with bits of salt dough.
- Bake the holder as directed. Turn after the first hour to be sure it does not stick to the pan.
- Cool completely after baking. Then paint with snaky patterns, finishing with eyes on the end of the top coil. – From “Circle Round” By Starhawk, Diane Baker and Anne Hill
Make ropes by rolling salt dough clay between your hands. Each rope should be two or three feet long and 1/4 to 1/2 inch in diameter. If younger children can’t manage such lengths, have them make smaller segments that can be joined later with a little pressure and water. Dip your fingers into the bowl of water occasionally if the dough tends to crack. Roll the paper into a 1 inch wide cylinder and tape it shut. Around this cylinder, tape a piece of wax paper. Coat the wax paper with a thin layer of oil. Lightly moisten a salt dough rope with water. Lay the paper cylinder on its side at one end of the rope. Roll it along the dough, wrapping the rope up the cylinder until it is six inches tall. Be sure the edges of the coiled rope always touch. To provide extra support, at intervals stick severaltoothpicks vertically through the coils. Make a bottom for the mold byshaping another piece of salt dough into a 3/4 inch thick circle that’s larger than the coiled tower in diameter. Moisten the bottom’s surface, then carefully lift the coiled tower onto the bottom piece and press gently to make a seal. Pull the paper cylinder out. This slides out easily, leaving the wax paper. Remove it by gently tugging on the wax paper with one hand while you support the clay coils with the others. Inspect each part of the mold, looking for tiny cracks where melted wax could leak. Press these shut. If the coils start to sag, quickly fashion a paper cylinder around the outside of the coils and tape it closed. Trim it to the same height as the clay, so it won’t get in the way when you are pouring wax. Set the mold in an empty bowl, in case wax leaks through. You are ready to pour. Pouring the wax is thrilling. Go very slowly up each level to make sure no wax is leaking through. If a leak appears, carefully pinch it shut and pour again. Insert the wick. The wax will harden within an hour, long before the clay dries. To unmold, just unwind the clay. If some sticks, soak the candle in cool water and then gently rinse off the clay. The candles have a wonderfully craggy spiral looping from bottom to top, and burn with a lovely strong flame.