Bright sunshine is pouring through my study window and making the altar corner bright! Light is returning to the World! It’s been so gloomy for a bit that it’s nice to see it again. Just at sunrise it was all clouds to the east and near where the sun was coming up, there was a solid block of clouds with golden stripes. That’s all gone, now and the sky is so *very* blue! It’s 48F and almost no breeze.
Yesterday flew past, but I wasn’t doing well by the end of it. Hatch and I were cooking all morning, which was fun, even though I was having trouble burning things in the convection oven. <<<<< I finally got to the shop at about 2:30, even though I had been ready in plenty of time, and we got our feast set up and ate and talked and had fun. It was getting dark when Marius ran me home and I fell into bed and slept like a dead thing for several hours while Tempus closed up, came home and crawled in with me. When I got up Tempus and I talked and snuggled for a while and then I got up and developed pictures before going back to bed.
Today we’re both supposed to be at the shop. I have a bunch of projects to work on, since the table is cleaned off in back. I just hope I have enough energy to work on things. Tempus has some errands to run.
…and so much for sunshine! The clouds are moving back in, but it was lovely while it lasted!
Two stories tall? This thing is *huge*! Check the scale against the kids in the pictures. http://sf.curbed.com/archives/2013/12/16/23_photos_of_the_fairmont_hotels_twostory_gingerbread_house.php
…and think about this one. I’ve been playing with the notion of a quiet overthrow of the patriarchy. http://www.lastwordonnothing.com/2013/12/18/one-weird-old-trick/
A Google Maps Santa Tracker!!!! …and it’s fun to play with. I got totally distracted from drawing for awhile…. http://www.google.com/santatracker/
Today’s Plant is the Strawberry. We have two wild varieties out here, Wood’s Strawberry, Fragaria vesca, the Coastal Strawberry, Fragaria chiloensis, and of course the Garden Strawberry, Fragaria × ananassa, which is a hybrid. It is a favorite flavor of many people and easy to reproduce in the lab. The leaves of vesca have been used to make a tea to help with diarrhea and the whole plant is used as an anti-depressant, from flowers to leaves to fruit. – Feminine, Venus, Water, Freya (and many other deities) – Carry the leaves for luck, use them in love spells and sachets, sleep on them to dream of your love. Pregnant women should carry a sachet of the leaves during the last few months of pregnancy to ease labor. The berries themselves are simply an aphrodisiac, often combined with chocolate for this purpose. Yum! Wood’s Strawberry here:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fragaria_vesca and Coastal Strawberry here:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fragaria_chiloensis Garden Strawberry here:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garden_strawberry
Scrooge, Marley, the ghosts of Christmas Past, Christmas Present and Christmas yet to come, Tiny Tim, “Bah, humbug!” and “God bless us, every one!” are all from A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, first published on December 19, 1843. It was part of the revival of older Christmas customs in Britain and has never gone out of print. Incidentally, it finally got Dickens out of debt, when he was desperate and was written in the course of just a few days. It has been adapted to dramatic readings, stage versions and silent,
“talkie” and more modern cinema releases, one of which I love because it has Patrick Stewart as Scrooge! It’s the only one that I know of that gets the wind-up of Scrooge’s rusty laughter right. He really *does* sound like he’s dying for a moment or 3! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Christmas_Carol
The shop 11am and we’ll be open over on Tuesday/Wed 23rd and 24th, then closed on 12/25 &6! Fall hours are 11am-6pm Thursday through Monday, although the time that we’re there is drifting earlier with the shorter days. 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,
New Moon – The beginning of a new cycle. Keywords for the New phase are: beginning, birth, emergence, projection, clarity. It is the time in a cycle that you are stimulated to take a new action. During this phase the new cycle is being seeded by your vision, inner and outer. Engage in physical activity. Spend time alone. VISUALIZE your goals for the 29.6-day cycle ahead. The new moon is for starting new ventures, new beginnings. Also love and romance, health or job hunting. God/dess aspect: Infancy, the Cosmic Egg, Eyes-Wide-Open Associated God/dess: Inanna who was Ereshkigal. Phase ends on 12/23 at 5:36am. Waxing Moon Magick – The waxing moon is for constructive magick, such as love, wealth, success, courage, friendship, luck or healthy, protection, divination. Any working that needs extra power, such as help finding a new job or healings for serious conditions, can be done now. Also, love, knowledge, legal undertakings, money and dreams. Phase ends at the Full on 1/4 at 8:53pm.
Back in the evening sky, the Moon now waxes past Venus and Mars.
Shortly after sunset, look for the hairline crescent Moon to the right of Venus (from North America). This is a challenging observation; bring binoculars.
Venus (magnitude –3.9) is beginning to show through the glow of sunset. Look for it just above the southwest horizon 20 or 30 minutes after sundown. The farther south you live, the higher it will appear.
Goddess Month of Astrea runs from 11/28 – 12/25
Goddess Month of Hestia runs from 12/26 – 1/22
Celtic Tree Month of Ruis/Elder, Nov 25 – Dec 22
Secret of the Unhewn Stone, Dec 23
Celtic Tree Month of Beth/Birch, Dec 24 – Jan 20
Runic half-month of Jera/ Jara 12/13-12/27 – Jara signifies the completion of natural cycles, such as fruition, and has a more transcendent meaning of mystic marriage of Earth and Cosmos. *Ø* Wilson’s Almanac free daily ezine | Book of Days | December 13
Runic half-month of Eihwaz/Eoh 12/28-1/11 Represents the dead, and the yew tree, sacred to Winter shamanism. Nigel Pennick, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books,
©2014 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Ruis/Elder – Nov 25 – Dec 22 – Ruis – (RWEESH), elder – Celtic tree month of Ruis (Elder) commences (Nov 25 – Dec 22) – Like other Iron Age Europeans, the Celts were a polytheistic people prior to their conversion to (Celtic) Christianity. The Celts divided the year into 13 lunar cycles (months or moons). These were linked to specific sacred trees which gave each moon its name. Today commences the Celtic tree month of Elder.
Elder or Elderberry (Sambucus) is a genus of fast-growing shrubs or small trees in the family Caprifoliaceae. They bear bunches of small white or cream coloured flowers in the Spring, that are followed by bunches of small red, bluish or black berries. The berries are a very valuable food resource for many birds.
Common North American species include American Elder, Sambucus canadensis, in the east, and Blueberry Elder, Sambucus glauca, in the west; both have blue-black berries.
The common European species is the Common or Black Elder, Sambucus nigra, with black berries.
The common elder (Sambucus nigra L.) is a shrub growing to 10 m (33 feet) in damp clearings, along the edge of woods, and especially near habitations. Elders are grown for their blackish berries, which are used for preserves and wine. The leaf scars have the shape of a crescent moon. Elder branches have a broad spongy pith in their centers, much like the marrow of long bones, and an elder branch stripped of its bark is very bone-like. The red elder (S. racemosa L.) is a similar plant at higher elevations; it grows to 5 m (15 feet). Red elder extends its native range to northern North America, and it is cultivated along with other native species, but common elders are seldom seen in cultivation. Elders are in the Honeysuckle family (Caprifoliaceae).
Ruis – Elder Ogam letter correspondences
Month: Makeup days of the thirteenth Moon
Meaning: End of a cycle or problem.
to study this month Straif – Blackthorn Ogam letter correspondences
Letter: SS, Z, ST
Meaning: Resentment; Confusion; Refusing to see the truth
Tides for Alsea Bay
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
M 22 High 12:46 AM 7.2 7:50 AM Rise 8:05 AM 0
~ 22 Low 6:05 AM 2.8 4:40 PM Set 5:58 PM
~ 22 High 11:56 AM 9.2
~ 22 Low 6:58 PM -1.3
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Empower yourself – find your light and let it shine.
~ I had rather do and not promise than promise and not do. – Arthur Warwick
~ A time will come when a politician who has willfully made war and promoted international dissension will be as sure of the dock and much surer of the noose than a private homicide. It is not reasonable that those who gamble with men’s lives should not stake their own. – H. G. Wells (1866-1946) English writer
~ Your happily ever after begins with your mindset. – S.Whyte
~ A work of art is the unique result of a unique temperament. – Oscar Wilde (1854-1900) Irish writer and wit
THE CRIMSON LEAF
I watched as one small crimson leaf clung to the barren branch,
Sad to see all that brilliant color fall to the ground to die.
It was fast approaching winter, and I would miss the bright colors.
Sometimes I feel like that small crimson leaf, hanging on,
Reluctant to let go, afraid that my individuality will be destroyed;
But still I hold on to you, afraid and not really trusting your love.
I know I am but the latest of many, but my personality is bright,
I am caring and I have brought you much happiness and love.
Still, there exists in you a timing clock that rings when things are over;
And affairs are always over before two years have passed by.
All the brightness, passion and intelligence of my nature
Have been directed at pleasing you and bringing joy into your life…
But I have always known in my heart that it was one-way only.
I have not the value to you that I have had to others, that did not
Have your deep place in my heart. Ironic that we cannot chose
The ones that we will love.
I feel like that bright leaf, beautiful for a time, but that will disappear
Forever. Already my passionate love has begun to pall on you,
And even my bright red hair is dimming and becoming paler….
Before long my heart will break; and you will tramp my scarlet self
Under your feet, as you go out my door. Then you will hunt for the
Next bright hopeful, that will give too much and receive too little,
Only to be trampled at the last.
Remember that my temper is fierce, like my scarlet hair. The more
You turn cold, the more my temper also becomes a cold anger,
And that is the most dangerous kind of all. Remember the old saying,
“Revenge is a dish Best eaten cold,” and beware – © Copyright 10/5/05, Beth Johnson (Mystic Amazon)
Yule Magick – Winter Solstice tidbit From: http://www.occultworldledger.com/yuletide.htm
Yule – (December 22-23) By Gordon Ireland
Yule, pronounced “you all”, or jol is the Winter Solstice, the shortest day and the longest night of the year. Yule, in Old Norse means, Wheel. As the Wheel of the Year is significant in pagan culture, it is important to note that Yule of the year means wheel. Which, if having read the previous article, Samhain, in the 99, October issue of The Seeker, it was noted that Samhain, may not have been the Celtic New Year, but rather Yule. Yule, starting with the birth of God, and a celebration of beginning of longer days, makes sense as the beginning of the New Year.
Yule, of all the Sabbats, is the one that causes the most confusion among those who follow the pagan path. Specifically those who are new to the path and are breaking away from their Christian faith and way of life. Yule, is, has, and always will be a pagan holiday. With that said, I guess I need to further elaborate.
Yule has many pagan elements and more pagan history in its foundation and pagan rites than Christian has. Yule has been celebrated since the beginning of time in the Northern Hemisphere. Many of the cultures located in the Northern Hemisphere celebrate Yule, all with a common theme, the birth of a God. Most of these Gods are associated with the Sun or with death and re-birth. Yule, like Christmas, celebrates the birth of God. Several pagan Gods, have Yule as their birth date:
This list is my no means complete, but does give you a general idea, that more than one God has celebrated his birthday during Yule. However, the Roman God Mirthra plays a most important role in the preservation of Yule, and its other name, Christmas.
Approximately in the year 312, Constantine, Emperor of Rome, declared Rome Christian. This however was not done because Constantine was Christian, he was not baptized until 337, it was more do to the fact, that Rome was declining, and Constantine saw in Christian religion, what Rome lacked, moral fortitude and the ability to self organize. To attempt to persuade his fellow pagan Romans, he choose Mirthra’s birthday (Yule) as the same a Jesus’, and from there just let human nature take its course. It didn’t hurt that after many hard fought battles, of which he won, had all armor and shields painted with Christian symbols, and that he told the populace that the Christian God granted Rome these Victories. In Rome, whoever controlled the Army controlled Rome. Which raises the question of confusion again. Did the Christians steal Yule, or did they preserve it for us? It is important to understand that while historical facts and data are important, they are not necessary to enjoy the Sabbat. If one believes that Yule is a celebration of the coming of light, warmth, and the birth of (insert god of your choice) that whether we call it Christmas, Yule or the Winter Solstice is unimportant. Yule is the one Sabbat that allows us to celebrate with other faiths without compromising our own. There are many pagan/pre-Christian customs that are still part of the Christmas celebration. The giving of gifts was first founded in Rome to celebrate Saturn’s Festival. The use of jingle balls is and Old Norse custom to drive away the evil spirits, in a time and place where night was longer than day. Mistole is an old Celtic custom and is commonly part of every household during Yule. The wreath, the complete circle, representing the Wheel of the year, is also still a custom.
Which brings us to the Yule tree. The tree of choice is the Fir, Evergreen or Pine. The reasons these particular trees where probably use is because that these where the only trees that were considered to be still alive, enternal. According to McCoy, these trees where sacred among the Druids, as they were the trees that didn’t die. The Druids would decorate the trees with images that represented their wants and desires for the coming year.
It should be noted that while Yule is considered a primarily Christian Holiday, it does not do anyone any good, declaring their theft. Rather we should be thankful that they have done such a great job of preserving it for us, and relish the fact that you know, and understand, why they decorate the tree, give gifts, and use bells. It might make Yule at the homestead easier on those families of mixed religion philosophies. So when someone wishes you a “Merry Christmas”, don’t tell them I am not a Christian but rather say, “Merry Yule to you also”, and know that Jesus wasn’t a bad guy, but rather in a very elite group of Gods, who all celebrate their Birthday on Yule.
The Yule ritual of course would involve a Yule log. As stated earlier, Yule logs are best made of Pine, Fir or Evergreen. The custom of lighting a Yule log is the classic representation of the birth of a God from the fire of the Mother.
- Myrrh oil
- Sea Salt
- One candle- green
- Wood matches
First, one needs to say a prayer of thanks to the spirit of the tree before cutting it down. (It is always best if you can cut down your own tree if possible.) After you cut down the tree, cut approximately 1-2 feet for the log. From the bottom, leave the rest intact to decorate.
Depending upon which ritual tools you have, you can either take a piece of chalk, and draw the symbol of the sun on the log. Or take you Boline and carve a representation of the sun.
Place the log in your fire place or burning pit. Open a circle around it, calling the four corners, starting with the
South: (air) rub the oil onto the carved sun figure, saying: “The Wheel has turned, full circle, we call you back to warm us.”
West: (water) pour the wine on the log, saying: “You, who have died, are now reborn.”
North: (earth) sprinkling salt over the log, saying: “Since time began we celebrate the birth of God. The darkest of nights, gives birth to the new sun.”
East: (fire) Taking the wood match light the fire, saying: “I light this fire in honor of all, Thank you God for the light you will bring us, thank you mother for the warmth of you son. Live within us.”
“So mote it be!”
Close circle. This ceremony can be conducted using candles, either by themselves of by placing the candles on top of the Yule log. Though the latter can be a fire hazard and the usual precautions should be taken. FOODS – http://www.occultworldledger.com/yuletide.htm
EASY YULE LOG
- 1 Package commercial cake mix, preferably chocolate
- 2 cans (24 oz.) pre-made frosting in a dark brown color
- Several tubes of cake decoration frosting in green, red and white
- Several toothpicks
Preheat over to 300 F. Grease and line a jellyroll pan with waxed paper. Mix the cake according to package instructions and pour a thin layer-no more than 1/4 inch thick-into the prepared jelly roll pan. Bake the cake until just underdone. If you can’t tell by looking then use the knife test. When the knife emerges not quite clean from the center or the cake, and when a light touch does not bounce back easily, it need to come out. Check the cake a 7 minutes and then every 2 minutes after that. Do NOT over-bake or the dough will be dry and hard to work with. Remove the cake from the over and let it cool slightly. The remove the cake from the pan by lifting out the wax paper. With the dark frosting, coat the top of the cake with toothpicks and let it cook for about 5 more minutes. Cool the cake for 30 minutes, and then frost it with the dark brown icing. Next, take the tubes of colored cake decorating frosting and make holly and mistletoe over the top. You can also use artificial greenery until it is time to eat the cake. To finish, take a toothpick and etch lines into the frosting to resemble tree bark. (McCoy, page 70)
SPICED FRUIT NOG
- 12 eggs, separated
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 2 cups apricot nectar
- 2 cups half-and half
- 1 (12-ounce) can evaporate
- 2 teaspoon rum flavoring
- Grated orange rind (optional)
Combine egg yolks, sugar, and spices in top of a double broiler. Place over simmering water and cook, stirring constantly with a wire whisk, until mixture reaches 165. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
Combine yolk mixture, egg whites, apricot nectar, half-and half, evaporated milk, and rum flavoring: beat at medium speed of an electric mixer until well blended. Cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled. Pour chilled nog into serving cups and sprinkle with orange rind, if desired. Yield: 2 quarts
LEG OF LAMB
- 1 Leg of Lamb
- Salt, pepper
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2-3 tablespoons flour
Put the leg of lamb on a grid in a roasting pan and pour (2 pints) of water into the pan. You can also put the Leg of Lamb in a roasting bag without a liquid. Place into oven. Heat over to 150-175 de. C (280-325 de. F) And roast for one hour for each kilo (2 lb.) of weight. Baste occasionally with the stock from the roasting pan. For the last half-hour of cooking switch on the grill, (US broiler) and grill the Leg of Lamb on both sides. If you use a roasting bag, remove it from the bag for the last half-hour and grill in the same way.
Strain the stock into a casserole and skim off the fat. Thicken the sauce with flour, or your favorite thickening, season and color with gravy browning. Add the cream and remove from the heat. Serve with your choice of vegetables and caramel potatoes.