Yes, we are closed today! No workshops! Featured photo by Ken Gagne, Winter hours are 11am-5pm Thursday through Monday. Closed Saturday 12/29, Closing Early for New Year’s on 12/31 (probably by 4pm), And then we’ll be closed again on New Year’s Day, plus our annual vacation from 7-17 January.
It was pretty wet in the early part of the evening, but it’s dry now that it’s just starting to get light. 50F, wind at 12mph and gusting up to 20, AQI15. We got 0.07 inches yesterday, but it seemed like more in the evening, and so far only 0.02. Plan on rain this afternoon and evening, easing off around midnight.
Tempus had picked up a couple of good pizzas at Papa Murphy’s Thursday evening. (It’s worthwhile to sign up for their e-mail coupons, if you like pizza. 40% off….) So he was cooking it, two slices at a time, in the convection oven. It took quite awhile. 1/2 an hour for two slices? So supper took awhile. 🙂 I was trying to catch up on mail.
Eventually I got that done and worked on writing. We stayed open later than usual, knowing that we were going to be gone today. Around 8 we started talking about some of the things that we were cooking for today, making sure that we have the ingredients.
Both of us had to get naps. I woke first, having slept later, and got some done on newsletter files. After that I realized it was getting late and I needed to get the lentils going. He woke up as I was banging pans around. We had some noodles and then got back to work. We sorted pickles and then took another break, then sorted out what we were going to need for serving and for personal use and then turned in.
Today we’re headed to Coos Bay for a holiday event/party! We’re going to be gone all day, but will open at the regular time tomorrow.
Today’s Plant is Nodding Onion, Allium cernuum. This is sometimes called Lady’s Leek. It’s an edible plant in the Allium family, but not particularly choice. (Yeah, personal experience…) It’s called “Nodding” because the inflorescences, the “flower”, tend to droop, unlike a lot of the alliums that end up with a ball on a stick. Most of the plants in this family are edible, but be careful! There are a few that are either disgusting or at least mildly poisonous and there are bulbs that *are* poisonous that are easy to mistake. Onions have been very important as a food/nutrition source for a long while and have even been worshiped at times. These are grown as ornamentals, mostly, but are found wild here on the coast. – Masculine, Mars, Fire, Isis – Cut and dry the flowers and add to a grapevine or rosemary wreath for a house protection spell. These are great for house blessings. Grown in pots indoors or in the garden they protect against evil and particularly against poisonous snakes. When you harvest in the fall, make a decorative braid of onions and hang over bedroom doors to prevent infections. Nodding onions are great for this purpose because, not being particularly great as food, you won’t mind replanting them in the spring as they start to sprout! Purify swords and athames after particularly heavy magicks, by rubbing the blade with a cut bulb, then wash with clear water and oil with rosemary-infused almond oil. Place the dried flowers in a vase at the head of the bed, or pack into a pillow sachet to help clarify prophetic dreams. More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allium_cernuum and on Alliums here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allium
Today’s feast is the day of Thomas a Becket. He was Archbishop of Canterbury when he was assassinated in the cathedral. It was a deed that shocked even the violent medieval world. There is some of the history here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Becket
Senista heather, Erica genistopha, is the plant associated with this Saint.
The shop opens at 11am. Winter hours are 11am-5pm Thursday through Monday. Holiday Hours – Closed Saturday 12/29, Closing Early for New Year’s on 12/31 (probably by 4pm), And then we’ll be closed again on New Year’s Day! 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
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 Tide Change on 1/5 at 5:28. 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 1/1 at 5:28am.
Before dawn on Sunday the 30th, the waning Moon shines upper left of Spica. Much farther upper left of the Moon is Arcturus, pale yellow-orange. Far to the Moon’s lower left are bright Venus, then Jupiter, then Mercury in a diagonal line..
Last Quarter Moon occurs at 4:34 a.m. EST. You will see it poking above the eastern horizon around midnight local time and climbing highest in the south as twilight starts to paint the sky. The halflit Moon spends the morning hours in the constellation Virgo the Maiden.
Mercury (magnitude –0.4) is getting lower in the dawn. Look for it just above the southeast horizon about 40 minutes before sunrise. It’s lower left of brighter Jupiter, which in turn is lower left of even brighter Venus. Mercury and Jupiter move farther apart every day.
Old Farmer’s Almanac Sky Map for December
Old Farmer’s Almanac Sky Map for January
Goddess Month of Hestia runs from 12/26 – 1/22
Celtic Tree Month of Beth/Birch, Dec 24 – Jan 20
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
©2018 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
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Sa 29 High 6:04 AM 7.9 7:52 AM Rise 12:11 AM 56
~ 29 Low 12:28 PM 2.2 4:45 PM Set 12:38 PM
~ 29 High 6:06 PM 6.3
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – The real measure of your wealth is how much you would be worth if you lost all your money.
Journal Prompt – What does this quote say to you? – If a man write a better book, preach a better sermon, or make a better mousetrap, than his neighbor, though he build his house in the woods, the world will make a beaten path to his door. — Ralph Waldo Emerson
~ Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago. – Les Brown
~ Better good manners than good looks. – Irish Proverb
~ Beauty is a short-lived tyranny. – Socrates
~ We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea–whether it is to sail or to watch it–we are going back from whence we came. – John F. Kennedy
CHESTNUTS ROASTING ON AN OPEN FIRE – Words by Robert Wells, adapted by Susan M. Shaw – Music by Mel Torme
Chestnuts Roasting on an open fire
Jack Frost nipping at your nose
Yuletide carols being sung by a choir
And folks dressed up like Eskimos
Everybody knows a turkey and some mistletoe
Help to make the season bright
Tiny tots with their eyes all a glow
Will find it hard to sleep tonight
They know that Santa’s on his way
He’s loaded lots of toys and goodies on his sleigh
And ev’ry mother’s child is gonna spy
To see if reindeer really know how to fly
And so I’m offering this simple phrase
To kids from one to ninety-two
Although it’s been said many times, many ways
“Merry Yuletide to you!”
Magick – What is Sylvester/Silvester? It’s the New Year’s celebration in Central Europe! Silvester celebrations – http://www.thelocal.de/society/20111231-16425.html#.UN3uwazheSq More on Pope Sylvester: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Sylvester_I A bit about it more on Wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silvester
Part of the reason that I’ve heard of this is that Babicka and Dedi (my grandparents) used to talk about the “SIEVE-est-er” which was a costume party held by the Czech community in Baltimore in late January. At various times the “uncles” (Dedi’s brothers and cousins) came up with some impressive outfits, including a clock that worked, a “rooster” that ran around laying eggs, a house on chicken legs and a two-person horse. This one was the big hit because they made balls of newspaper painted brown and the horse, after running around the dance floor, swishing its tail, backed up to the most pompous woman in the room and dropped them out the hind end of the horse into her lap! – Anja
Austrians consider this a rauchnacht or smoke-night when all rooms and animals must be purified with the smoke of incense and holy water, a purification ritual.
In The Winter Solstice, Matthews describes another Austrian custom, involving a masked figure called the Sylvester (from the Latin sylvan, meaning “from the woods”), a sort of Green Man who hides in the corner at inns throughout Austria and leaps out when a young man or woman passes to give them a kiss. The Sylvester wears a wreath of mistletoe, perhaps an emblem of fertility which he bestows with the kisses. When midnight comes, he is driven out of the room as a representative of the old year. – Matthews, John, The Winter Solstice, Quest 1998
… the prefect Tarquinius supposed that Timothy had had great plenty of riches, which he demanded of Silvester, threatening him to the death but if he delivered them to him. And when he found certainly that Timothy had no great riches, he commanded to Saint Silvester to make sacrifice to the idols, and if he did not he would make him suffer divers torments. Saint Silvester answered: False, evil man, thou shalt die this night, and shalt have torments that ever shall endure, and thou shalt know, whether thou wilt or not, that he whom we worship is very God. Then Saint Silvester was put in prison, and the provost went to dinner. Now it happed that as he ate, a bone of a fish turned in his throat and stuck fast, so that he could neither have it down ne up, and at midnight died like as Saint Silvester had said, and then Saint Silvester was delivered out of prison. – ‘The Life of St Silvester’, The Golden Legend
In this time it happed that there was at Rome a dragon in a pit, which every day slew with his breath more than three hundred men. Then came the bishops of the idols unto the emperor and said unto him: O thou most holy emperor, sith the time that thou hast received christian faith the dragon which is in yonder fosse or pit slayeth every day with his breath more than three hundred men. Then sent the emperor for Saint Silvester and asked counsel of him of this matter. Saint Silvester answered that by the might of God he promised to make him cease of his hurt and blessure of this people. Then S Silvester put himself to prayer, and Saint Peter appeared to him and said: Go surely to the dragon and the two priests that be with thee take in thy company, and when thou shalt come to him thou shalt say to him in this manner: Our Lord Jesu Christ which was born of the Virgin Mary, crucified, buried and arose, and now sitteth on the right side of the Father, this is he that shall come to deem and judge the living and the dead, I commend thee Sathanas that thou abide him in this place till he come. Then thou shalt bind his mouth with a thread, and seal it with thy seal , wherein is the imprint of the cross. Then thou and the two priests shall come to me whole and safe, and such bread as I shall make ready for you ye shall eat. Thus as Saint Peter had said, Saint Silvester did. And when he came to the pit, he descended down one hundred and fifty steps, bearing with him two lanterns, and found the dragon, and said the words that Saint Peter had said to him, and bound his mouth with the thread, and sealed it, and after returned, and as he came upward again he met with two enchanters which followed him for to see if he descended, which were almost dead of the stench of the dragon, whom he brought with him whole and sound, which anon were baptized, with a great multitude of people with them. Thus was the city of Rome delivered from double death, that was from the culture and worshipping of false idols, and from the venom of the dragon. – ‘The Life of St Silvester’, The Golden Legend