Minus Tide at 8:06 AM of -2.0 feet. Wicca 101 at 7pm. Lesson 8!
Low, used-to-be-fog clouds are scudding past and the beaches have a lot of steam/fog over them. Otherwise it’s bright sunshine and 59F with 84% humidity. I think the humidity will vanish with the fog. It’s pretty windy again, gusts to 18mph and running along at about 10 here in town.
Yesterday was productive, but rather slow. We tried the pickled mushrooms and they’re tasty, but quite strong. Tempus made an oat/wheat bread. I got some more pincushions done and a bit more bagging herbs, along with some ironing and stitching a couple of needlebooks.
I had more herbs to be and maybe he’ll get some of the ones I did over the weekend hung up before he heads home.
We’re on the last leg of the 101 class, might even finish tonight! I think this is the longest one we’ve ever done.
Today’s Feast is that of St. Kinga, or Cunegunde, who was Grand Duchess of Poland in the 13th century. She was married, but she and her husband, the Grand Duke, Boleslav V, known as “the Chaste”, kept their chastity inside of marriage. When he died, she became a Poor Clare, eventually an abbess, having sold all her possessions and given the money to the poor. She’s a patron of Poland. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kinga_of_Poland
Today’s plant is St. John’s Wort, Hypericum perforatum,which traditionally blooms at mid-summer on the pagan festival that the feast of St. John the Baptist replaced. It is widely used in the treatment of depression and to ward off evil, both in a medical and magickal sense. Charms made of this herbs, harvested on the summer solstice (or on June 24 or July 7, depending on your culture) make some of the best protection charms (especially against lightning) and good prosperity charms. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_John%27s_wort
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Love & Light,
Today’s Astro & Calendar
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 at 2:46pm on 7/24. 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 Tide Change on 8/7 at 11:11am. Diana’s Bow – On the 3rd day after the new moon you can (weather permitting) see the tiny crescent in the sky, the New Moon holding the Old Moon in her arms. Begin on your goals for the next month. A good time for job interviews or starting a project. Take a concrete step! God/dess aspect: Daughter/Son/Innocence – Associated God/dess: Vesta, Horus. Phase ends on 7/27 at 2:46pm.
In bright twilight, look low and use the Moon to find your way to Mercury and Regulus. Mercury moves fast with respect to the background stars; the pair is drawn here for the 24th. On the 25th, Mercury will be closer to Regulus’s lower left. Using binoculars about 30 minutes after sunset, look very low in the west for Mercury and fainter Regulus with the thin crescent Moon to their lower right, as shown here.
Venus (magnitude –4.1) shines brightly in the east before and during dawn. Look for fainter orange Aldebaran increasingly far to its upper right. To Venus’s lower right, orange Betelgeuse is rising.
Goddess Month of Kerea runs from 7/11 – 8/8
Celtic Tree Month of Tinne/Holly, Jul 8 – Aug 4
Runic half-month of Uruz/ Ur, 7/14-28 According to Pennick Ur represents primal strength, a time of collective action. A good time for beginnings! Pennick, Nigel, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books, Rochester, Vermont, USA, 1992
©2017 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Celtic Tree Month of Tinne/Holly, Jul 8 – Aug 4, Tinne (CHIN-yuh), holly – The holly (Ilex aquifolium L.) is a shrub growing to 10 m (35 feet) in open woodlands and along clearings in forests. Hollies are evergreen, and stand out in winter among the bare branches of the deciduous forest trees that surround them. Hollies form red berries before Samhain which last until the birds finish eating them, often after Imbolc. The typical “holly leaf” is found on smaller plants, but toward the tops of taller plants the leaves have fewer spiny teeth. Hollies are members of the Holly family (Aquifoliaceae). The common holly is often cultivated in North America, as are hybrids between it and Asiatic holly species.
Graves (1966) and others are of the opinion that the original tinne was not the holly, but rather the holm oak, or holly oak (Quercus ilex L.). This is an evergreen oak of southern Europe that grows as a shrub, or as a tree to 25 m (80 feet). Like the holly, the holm oak has spiny-edged leaves on young growth. It does not have red berries, but it does have red leaf “galls” caused by the kermes scale insect; these are the source of natural scarlet dye. Holm oaks are occasionally cultivated in North America.
Tides for Alsea Bay
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
M 24 High 1:10 AM 8.7 5:55 AM Rise 7:28 AM 0 24
~ Low 8:06 AM -2.0 8:50 PM Set 9:50 PM
~ 24 High 2:33 PM 7.2
~ 24 Low 8:10 PM 1.5
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Believe in Magic!
~ Success is restricted only from those who restrict themselves from success. – Gillis Triplett
~ The fastest path to success is helping someone else get there – Bridget Brohman
~ The beginning is the most important part of the work. – Plato
~ The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear. – Mandela
O, to lie in the ripening grass,
That gracefully bends to the winds that pass,
And to look aloft the oak-leaves through
Into the sky so deep, so blue! – –William Roscoe Thayer (1859–1923)
Cornbread (goes with Harvest Bread Basket)
- 3/4 cup flour
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups yellow corn meal
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
Preheat a greased 9×9 pan in a 425ºF oven for 20-22 minutes. Pour bread mixture into hot pan and place back in oven for 20 minutes. Serve hot with butter or honey. Can be frozen for up to a week. Yield: 1 large loaf
[Anja’s Note – This recipe can be used for cornsticks, although you need to really butter the mold. If you are baking in a pan, try adding ½ cup grated cheddar, or ¼ cup of chopped onion/spring onion/garlic scapes, or ¼ cup cooked, crumbled bacon…. Or all of the above!]
Source: McCoy, The Sabbats Use for: Lughnasadh, Mabon
The Lammas Bannock
In Scotland, the first fruits were celebrated by the making of a ‘bonnach lunastain’ or Lunasdál bannock, or cake. In later times, the bannock was dedicated to Mary, whose feastday, La Feill Moire, falls on August 15th, two days later than the date of Lammas according to the old reckoning. A beautiful ceremony, which, no doubt, had pagan origins, attended the cutting of the grain (usually oats or bere.) In the early morning, the whole family, dressed in their best, went out to the fields to gather the grain for the ‘Moilean Moire,’ the ‘fatling of Mary.’ They laid the ears on a sunny rock to dry, husked them by hand, winnowed them in a fan, ground them in a quern, kneaded them on a sheepskin, and formed them into a bannock. A fire was kindled of rowan or another sacred wood to toast the bannock, then it was divided amongst the family, who sang a beautiful paean to Mother Mary while they circled the fire in a sunwise direction.
Here is a modern recipe you can try:
8 oz flour
4 oz butter
2 oz caster sugar
1oz chopped almonds
1oz mixed candied peel
Set oven to 325F/Gas 3. Grease a baking sheet. Sift the flour into a bowl. Add the sugar and butter and rub in to form a dough. Add the almonds and mix in the peel, making sure they are evenly distributed. Form into a thick round on a lightly floured surface and prick all over with a fork. Place on the sheet and bake for about 45-60 minutes. Allow to cool and serve sliced thinly and buttered.
From: Country Cookery – Recipes from Wales by Sian Llewellyn.
Lammas Curds – Crowdie
In the Scottish Highlands, when the cattle were brought down to the strath, (valley) from their summer pastures on the hills, mothers gave their children and all others returned from the sheilings a small cheese of curds made from that day’s milk, for luck and good-will. More curds and butter were specially prepared for the high feast later that day. The Lammas cheese was probably a kind of crowdie. Caraway seeds can be added to the recipe below to give it the authentic flavoring.
Put two pints (40 fl.oz.) of freshly sour or thick milk into a pan and place on a slow heat and watch until it curdles. Do not allow the milk to simmer or boil otherwise the curds will harden. When the curd sets let it cool before you attempt draining the whey.
Line a colander with a clean muslin cloth and transfer the curds into it and leave until most of the whey has drained before squeezing the last of the whey out by hand. Mix the crowdie with a little salt until it has a smooth texture. Now blend the crowdie with a little cream and place the mixture in a dish and allow to rest in a refrigerator.
From: Country Cookery – Recipes from Wales by Sian Llewellyn.
Silliness – Join the Army of the Lord
A friend was in front of me coming out of church one day, and the preacher was standing at the door, as he always is, to shake hands. He grabbed my friend by the hand and pulled him aside. The Pastor said to him, “You need to join the Army of the Lord!”
My friend replied, “I’m already in the Army of the Lord, Pastor.”
Pastor questioned, “How come I don’t see you except at Christmas and Easter?”
He whispered back, “I’m in the secret service.”