There’s bright sunshine this morning. The pavement is still damp, but I don’t think that’s going to last long. 52F, wind at 0mph, AQI 22, UV2. The sun’s not likely to last long, though. Rain likely tonight, and very likely tomorrow night and then we get a break until Thursday again.
Yesterday it rained….and rained…and rained… it was pretty amazing to watch. Of course, I love rain, especially the kind where it’s made up its mind that you’re *going* to be wet. That’s best with a raincoat and galoshes so you can puddle-stomp if you’re outside, but it’s lovely to watch from indoors, as well. I get lost in the patterns that it makes as it falls. The god loves the goddess. 🙂 By 4pm we had just under 3/4 of an inch! It was down to showers by that point.
I got the ritual formatted and printed up, then worked on cheese pictures for awhile. Tempus took off to get his check and do some shopping. I had a few customers and talked rocks, geology and archaeology with one of them for about an hour. Suzanne stopped by and dropped me off a few truffles that I decided to put into scrambled eggs. Not much gets better than that! She also dropped off some rosemary for tonight’s ritual.
Tempus was dragging when he got back, but he still had to go out to the bank and back. 😦 He got his leftovers from yesterday and then we had to clean up. Amy and Stella both were there for a few minutes, not planning on the Sabbat, but needed to talk a bit of Feast business. Once cleanup was done, he crashed out for a few minutes. I got the cheese ready, then went back to my computer to wait.
Today’s plant is the Columbine, genus Aquilegia. Found in garden and native species in Oregon, these plants stick their flowers up into the air where they can be admired. They’re related to aconite and share those qualities of a deadly poisonous plant. The flowers aren’t the problem. It’s the seeds and root. Columbina means “dove” and Aquila is “eagle” supposedly from the resemblance of the flower either to clustered doves or the spur at the back of the flower to an eagle’s claw. There is such a thing as too much imagination…. – Feminine, Venus, Water – Crush between the hands or wear in a pouch that can be squashed to induce courage and daring. Carry a posy of the flowers to attract love and the seeds can be used as a love perfume when crushed, however the seeds are *very* poisonous, so don’t ingest any! More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aquilegia
Today is Groundhog’s Day, which is a descendant of the old Imbolc Celebrations where weather divinations for the year were a big chunk of the festivities. From the look of our weather here we’re done with winter, which is a little worrisome. We haven’t had nearly enough rainy this year… More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Groundhog_Day and here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punxsutawney_Phil
The shop opens at 11am. 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
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 2/4 at 1:04pm. 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 at the Dark on 2/3 at 1:04am.
The sky’s biggest asterism — at least the biggest that’s widely recognized — is the Winter Hexagon. It fills the sky toward the east and south these evenings. Start with brilliant Sirius at its bottom. Going clockwise from there, march up through Procyon, Pollux and Castor, Menkalinan and Capella on high, down to Aldebaran, then to Rigel in Orion’s foot, and back to Sirius. Betelgeuse shines inside the Hexagon, off center.
Although Saturn passed on the opposite side of the Sun from Earth exactly one month ago, it already appears low in the southeast during morning twilight. From mid-northern latitudes, the ringed planet rises about 90 minutes before the Sun and climbs 10° above the horizon a half-hour before sunup. Saturn shines at magnitude 0.6 and should be fairly easy to pick out of the twilight. The waning crescent Moon makes the task even easier this morning. Its 5-percent-lit crescent appears 3° to the ringed planet’s lower left. Simply center the Moon through binoculars and look for the bright point of light near the field’s upper right edge.
For those who believe in folklore, the fate of winter rests on the shoulders of the groundhog. If the furry rodent sticks his head out of his burrow this morning and sees his shadow, we’ll have six more weeks of winter. But if the weather is cloudy, it means spring is right around the corner. What does this have to do with astronomy? Groundhog Day celebrates one of the four so-called cross-quarter days, which mark the midpoints between the solstices and equinoxes. February 2 falls approximately midway between the winter solstice and the vernal equinox.
Mercury is buried deep in the sunset. But later this month, it will climb up into its best evening apparition of the year.
Old Farmer’s Almanac Sky Map for January
Goddess Month of of Bridhe, runs from 1/23 – 2/19
Celtic Tree Month of Luis/Rowan, Jan 21-Feb 17
Runic half-month of Elhaz/Algiz, from 1/28-2/11. This half month: optimistic power, protection and sanctuary.
©2018 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Celtic Tree Month of Luis/Rowan, Jan 21-Feb 17, Luis (LWEESH)/rowan – The rowan, or mountain ash (Sorbus aucuparia L.) is related to servceberries. 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.
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Sa 2 Low 4:46 AM 3.4 7:33 AM Rise 6:18 AM 8
~ 2 High 10:34 AM 8.1 5:27 PM Set 3:36 PM
~ 2 Low 5:41 PM -0.1
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – There is only one success–to be able to spend your life in your own way.
~ To become a butterfly, do you think that it feels fear as it breaks out of the cocoon? Though it’s fear may be unfounded, once it’s wings are spread, it soars to new heights it could not imagine as a caterpillar. So, when feeling the pangs of anxiety and fear, find yourself a moment and imagine yourself as an emerging butterfly. ~ Wravyn
~ Keep the faith, don’t lose your perseverance and always trust your gut extinct. – Paula Abdul
~ The heart of a mother is a deep abyss at the bottom of which you will always find forgiveness. – Honore’ de Balzac
~ Avarice is the vice of declining years. – George Bancroft (1800-1891) US historian, statesman
On a clear winter’s evening
The crescent moon
And the round squirrels’ nest
In the bare oak
Are equal planets. – Anne Porter (1911–2011)
I had a strange dream this morning. As usual, it’s practically a story on its own, though i was awakened before I got much plot out of it.
This land, a vaguely fantasy setting, was ruled over by a kind middle aged centaur and his young human wife. We only see her briefly, as she is in the other room caring for their three small children most of the time. Though I get the sense that such extreme inter-species relationships are not common, they are happy and it seems everything has gone smoothly.
The king, knowing how conspicuous he is, had commissioned a magical disguise to allow him to pass anonymously among the populace. This was done by stepping into an empty picture frame, I think, but I’m not sure how. One of the members of his court was spotted carrying off a fresh portrait that looked like the king’s new disguise. The king summoned him to discuss the matter, planning to let him know that he had not gone unnoticed and ask what his intentions were.
A great quest of some kind was about to begin. It seemed that this was fairly routine, but that didn’t make it commonplace. It had the feel of a major holiday. Something you expect, something that disrupts the regular routine of the rest of the year, but still something that people focus on and get excited for. This quest was a search for something. It seemed almost everyone was planning to search. There was no doom foretold, nothing terrible at stake. Was it treasure? The finding of the object of the quest would bring prestige.
A forty-something woman and her 17-22 year old son had recently arrived in the land. I believe they were from the ordinary world here, and had been in this land for no more than a couple of months. Long enough to have adjusted to the peculiarities of the place, but not long enough to have absorbed lore, idioms, or political views. They were considering whether or not they should go on the quest.
The king summoned the new arrivals. He asked if they would go, if they were prepared. He told them he hoped they would consider it.
They agreed to go, and said that when they arrived they had been taken on a shopping spree to acquire all the essentials for living and questing. They were still a little in awe of this generosity. They confessed that they didn’t have a tent or many other things that might help, but they were sure they would manage. After all, they had their SUV, which they had been assured was an appropriate means of transportation on such a quest, though they felt a little strange using it in a fantasy setting.
The king assured them it would be fine, and offered to add a few more items to their travel inventory. “You have been on a shopping spree already, but I’m sure you didn’t have enough money to go on this kind of shopping spree!” he said. He explained that ordinarily, people go to stores and pick up generic things off the shelves. Everything you need will be there. Anyone with need can have it. But the special things… he could have anything he wanted, because all of it could be created by drawing it into reality.
That’s where things come from here. They are drawn. They are images, and then they become real. And somehow you can still slip them into your pouch and carry them about as though they weighed nothing more than a scrap of paper, nor took up more space. To get special custom things took money, of course, but the king was happy to buy the new pair a comfortable bed to fill the back of their vehicle, and several other handy items. He also offered to loan them his own tent, a purple and gold striped square marquee, because it was too distinctive for him to use while in disguise.
All his things were striped purple and gold, even the very worn set of dice he kept taking from his pouch and rolling around in his hand. The dice were from a long time ago, before he was king. Most of the things in this pouch he held were from before he was king, and these are the things he wished to take with him on the quest. Most were more sentimental or possibly lucky than practically useful. He had beads and dice, crystals and a sprig of rosemary. These were precious to him. The practical items could be replaced, but not these.
The people, knowing intuitively that the things he showed them were very important to him, were polite and didn’t ask about them. They were grateful for his kindness, and still amazed at how generous everyone had been since their arrival. There was no thought in them of ever leaving this land; no homesickness at all.
The king did ask them one favor, as he helped them pack their adventuring gear. “You are new here. You see this place as it really is, not with the biases of having grown up here,” he thought of his own childhood, being raised by an ogre woman who had many views that he did not agree with, but also of his own people and the way they viewed him, a centaur. Many did not want him to be their king. “While you are on the quest, I want you to look at everything. Really look. I want you to see all of it and tell me what you see.” There was both hope and sadness in his voice.
Silliness – Squirrel Quarrel
Two little squirrels were walking along in the forest. The first one spied a nut and cried out, “Oh, look! A nut!”
The second squirrel jumped on it and said, “It’s my nut!”
The first squirrel said, “That’s not fair! I saw it first!” “Well, you may have seen it, but I have it,” argued the second.
At that point, a lawyer squirrel came up and said, “You shouldn’t quarrel. Let me resolve this dispute.”
The two squirrels nodded, and the lawyer squirrel said, “Now, give me the nut.”
He broke the nut in half, and handed half to each squirrel, saying, “See! It was foolish of you to fight. Now the dispute is resolved.” Then he reached over and said, “And for my fee, I’ll take the meat.”