Featured photo by Paul Didsayabutra. House Capuchin’s Project Day from Noon to 5pm.
Ancient Light’s Holiday Hours!
Open Sunday, 12/24 Christmas Eve from 11am to 7pm
Closed Christmas Day, Monday 12/25, Tuesday 12/26, Wednesday 12/27
Open Thursday 12/29 through Sunday 12/31 from 11-5pm (Regular Hours)
Closed New Year’s Day, Monday 1/1, Tuesday 1/2, Wednesday 1/3
Back to regular hours on Thursday 1/4/18!
The sky is various shades of grey from medium to dark. There’s a layer at 1800 feet and then a solid layer at 11,000 feet. It’s chilly, 39F, with wind gusts only hitting 5mph in town, but the bridge got a bit interesting, since gusts are hitting 20mph in exposed spots. We have rain due in before mid-afternoon and everything is damp, already, including the glove that I dropped last night getting out of the car at home and then couldn’t find in the dark….
Yesterday started slowly and revved up as we went. Coffee was first, then herbs, which was all keeping going on what I’ve been doing for weeks now, packing dried herbs, getting them headered into the inventory and hung…..
Tempus got the ritual stuff cleaned up and put away. He went into Newport to get the nuts that I needed for the holiday treats and some cheese for pickling (yeah, I know, I find weird recipes…). We had a couple of sets of people in during the early afternoon, and I spent some time writing up recipes, then pricing sale goods. We have a bunch of inexpensive amber (bracelets, heart pendants and some new earrings) A couple of people called in about readings and do-we-haves, and then more people came in, looking for sage (“…because my MiL is coming, omg”…. <grin>) and last-minute prezzies.
Tempus drove us around to see a few lighted houses that I hadn’t seen yet. I actually dozed off before he went past the first one and he had to wake me, which made us both laugh.
Today we have a lot of cooking to do. I’m going to make a recipe of schiz, ‘coz Sash wants fried cheese for Christmas dinner. 🙂 and going to start another batch of tvarog, so we have some to eat and some for babovka. I also have a couple of batches of spiced nuts to do and to start setting up the Christmas meal. I need to get a couple of recipes sent out to people to do, as well.
…and of course the shop will be open all day until late. If you need a reading, you might need to wait a bit if I’m in the middle of a cooking process, but we can feed you some holiday goodies to pass the time! 🙂
I already have my Santa Tracker going, do you? 🙂 https://santatracker.google.com/#tracker
A photo from Facebook by on Oregon Images from yesterday morning.
Today’s plant is the Snowberry, Symphoricarpos albus. My kids used to call this “popcorn plant”, which is a name I’ve heard from others, too. The white berries are used as a food, a soap, and for hand lotion. It doesn’t have any magickal uses that I know of, although the folk magicks for this bush amongst the Slavs say that it is “proper” as an offering to statues of the gods. Also it should have the properties of purification and healing, just going by the medicinal uses and the fact that it will re-grow from the root and is planted as riparian erosion control and around abandoned mines and other such places. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symphoricarpos_albus
Today is a celebration of the Yule Log and the customs of this time of the year! Traditionally the Yule Log burns for the 12 days of Christmas, lighted tonight. Here’s more on the Yule Log. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yule_log …and here is a page about the Yule Log TV program http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yule_Log_%28TV_program%29 There are even links at the end to get you to the webcast!
Kolada – Studen (December) 24-31 – This is one of the most important pagan Slavic holidays. At the time of the Winter Solstice, we sing songs for Lada and of praise to Perun who are prisoner now under frost and snow. During these days we celebrate our Gods by drinking a toast to them and burning bonfires deep within the forest. We wend our way singing from house to house, bemasked and dancing as we go. Under the aegis of the New Year, we sacrifice a Goat:
Behind a large mountain
Beside a swift river
Within a dark forest,
Big bonfires are lit.
On benches around the fire,
These benches made of oak,
Men of reknown on these benches seated
Famous men, beautiful ladies
Sing Kolada’s songs.
The Old Man in the center, seated
Grinds his knife of iron;
Boiling hot, boiling
With the goat nearby…
The time of sacrifice for the goat. – (From an ancient song)
The shop is open 11-7pm Thursday through Monday, although we’re there a lot later most nights. Holiday Hours. We will be closing early on 12/24 and 12/31 and closed 12/25 and 1/1. Need something off hours? Give us a call at 541-563-7154 or Facebook or email at email@example.com 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
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 1/1/18 at 6:21pm. Waxing Crescent phase – Keywords for the Crescent phase are: expansion, growth, struggle, opportunity. It is the time in a cycle that you gather the wisdom learned in the new phase and communicate your intention to move forward. Light a candle. Write or read an affirmation. LISTEN & ABSORB. Commit to your goal. God/dess aspect: Maiden/Youth, energy and enthusiasm – Associated God/dess: Artemis & Apollo, Mayet/Djehuti, Freya/Frey. Phase ends at the Quarter on 12/26 at 1:20am.
Will the Moon on the 30th occult Aldebaran for your location? And when?
As soon as the stars come out, look high above the Moon for the Great Square of Pegasus. Look far below the Moon for Fomalhaut.
Ursid meteor shower – December sees activity from two meteor showers: Geminids and Ursids. Conditions are good for a meteor shower called the Ursids, which peaks just before Christmas. This is a shower for northern hemisphere observers only because the radiant, from which direction the meteors appear, lies in the northernmost constellation, Ursa Minor. Activity may be seen from December 17th to 25th, with a peak on the night of the 22nd/23rd. Rates are usually low, with a maximum rate of 10 per hour for a single observer under perfect conditions, but the Ursids have sprung a surprise with higher rates in come years. Again, moonlight will not be a problem this year. As ever, during a meteor watch, you may also see some other, random, meteors unrelated to the known showers. These are known as sporadics.
Mercury (magnitude 0) is having a good morning apparition. Look for it low in the southeast in early dawn, very far lower left of bright Jupiter. Don’t confuse Mercury with fainter, twinklier Antares about 9° to its right.
Mercury – Innermost planet Mercury cannot be observed for the first three weeks of December because it will lie too close to the Sun. But after it passes between the Earth and the Sun on the 13th, an event known as inferior conjunction, it will move into the morning sky. From about the 21st, it will get far enough from the Sun to be seen with the unaided eye, shining at around zero magnitude, as long as you have a clear horizon to the south-east. Mercury’s orbital path will be tilted quite sharply to the horizon from northern latitudes, lifting it higher than it might be at other morning apparitions, and making it easier to find.
Goddess Month of Astrea runs from 11/28 – 12/25
Goddess Month of Hestia runs from 12/26 – 1/22
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
©2017 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Celtic Tree Month of 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 three trees in my front yard form root sprouts that would take over the bed where they are planted if I didn’t cut them back. 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.
Phagos – Beech Ogam letter correspondences to study this month
Letter: PH, IO
Meaning: New experiences and information coming
Tides for Alsea Bay
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Su 24 High 4:42 AM 6.9 7:51 AM Rise 11:44 AM 25
~ 24 Low 10:28 AM 3.4 4:42 PM Set 11:05 PM
~ 24 High 3:50 PM 6.5
~ 24 Low 10:37 PM 1.0
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – It is better to give than to receive.
~ Putting your chi, your energy, behind your intent enhances your intent and helps bring your desires to life. This is what I call magick. – Kerr Cuhulain
~ Train yourself to let go of everything you fear to lose. – Yoda (Star Wars Episode III)
~ Right action is about doing the right thing, the important thing, even if it is painful. – Kerr Cuhulain
~ We must take responsibility for our actions and think about what we are doing. – Kerr Cuhulain
Let me be merry now, ’t is time;
The season is at hand
For Christmas rhyme and Christmas chime,
Close up, and form the band. – Elizabeth Drew Stoddard (1823–1902)
Merry Berry Yuletide Punch (alcohol-free)
- 6 cups orange juice
- 20 ounces frozen strawberries in syrup
- 2 cups cranberry juice cocktail
- 3 cups ginger ale
Blend the orange juice, strawberries, and cranberry juice cocktail. Add ginger ale immediately before serving.
Anja’s mulled wine
- 2 cups of water
- 1 star anise
- 10 3 or 4 inch cinnamon sticks
- small handful of whole cloves
- 1 crushed whole nutmeg
- 1 vanilla bean (opt.)
- (any other sweet spice you like can be added!)
- 2 cups of sugar
Bring water to a boil in heavy bottomed pot. Add spices and simmer 5 minutes. Add sugar and turn to low heat. Cook down slowly, stirring constantly until back to two cups of liquid. Strain out spices, but save the big pieces.
2 hours before party time
- ½ gallon of cranapple juice
- ½ gallon of cheap Burgundy wine
- party urn (30 cup!)
Take a party urn and pour wine and cranapple juice into it. Plug in. When it has finished heating, pour the syrup in slowly, stirring constantly (if you do this fast, it will sink to the bottom and scorch, not an enticing flavor!) Take the large whole spices (cinnamon, vanilla & anise) and put into urn. If you like a lot of nutmeg flavor, cut another whole nutmeg into 4 pieces and add. Serve hot, with cinnamon stick swizzles, pfeffernusse (or lebkuchen, gingerbread or gingersnaps) and Kiss Thumbprint cookies (brownies or other chocolate thingies work, too).
- 1 ½ cup sugar
- 1 ¼ cup cocoa powder
- 1 ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup hot water
- 1 gallon milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- This recipe can be doubled and kept in crock-pot for easier serving to large groups.
- In large saucepan, combine sugar, cocoa and salt.
- Add hot water slowly, mixing well.
- Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture boils
- Boil and stir 2 minutes.
- Add milk; heat to serving temperature, stirring occasionally. DO NOT boil.
- Remove from heat; add vanilla, and cinnamon; whip with a whisk.
- Serve hot, with whipped cream or marshmallows if desired.
Hot Toddy – Hot Whiskey, also known as ‘hot Irish’ or just ‘punch’, is a favourite winter drink in Irish pubs, good for what ails you!
- boiling water
- 1-2 tsp sugar
- 1 large measure Irish whiskey
- slice of lemon
- 2 or 3 whole cloves
- Heat a stemmed whiskey glass by running it under hot water.
- Pour in fresh boiling water to more than half full,
- Dissolve sugar to taste,
- Add the whiskey, a slice of lemon and the cloves.
- Serve at once.
BUCHE DE NOEL – Try this easier, lighter version of the traditional chocolate yule log.
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup cocoa
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- extra cocoa for dusting
Beat eggs on high speed until very thick and lemon-colored. (If eggs are not beaten enough, cake will be heavy and rubbery.) Gradually beat in sugar. On low speed, beat in water and vanilla. Add dry ingredients gradually, beating just until smooth.
Pour into a heavy jelly-roll (10×15-inch) pan lined with greased and floured foil. (Fit foil snuggly into pan.) Bake at 375 degrees F for 12 to 15 minutes. Immediately loosen cake from edges of pan and invert onto a clean towel that has been sprinkled with cocoa. Carefully peel foil from cake. Trim edges of cake if necessary. While cake is hot, roll both cake and towel, starting with the narrow end, and place on wire rack, seam side down. Cool for at least 30 minutes.
Filling and frosting:
- 2 cups whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 3 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
Whip cream with vanilla and confectioners’ sugar. Unroll cooled cake and remove towel. Spread half the filling over cake, being generous at edges. Roll up. Spread remaining whipped cream over the log and sprinkle with cocoa.