There was some glorious sun, earlier and patches of blue sky, but they’ve gone away. It’s still bright, but everything is damp and there’s more rain on the way. Yeah, more likely rain, than snow…. 44F, wind at 2mph, but gusting quite a bit higher, AQI10. More rain is due at 2pm. They *are* talking about snow showers late tonight and in the morning, but accumulation at sea level isn’t likely. Otoh, the mountains and passes will be interesting. …and it’s going to be that cold tonight, so who knows?
That went well. We processed an old bundle of rosemary that’s been waiting down to needles, lighting twigs and spoon and wand pieces. The workshops are a lot of fun. Busy hands get the jobs done and we talk over herbs and herb spells, cures and uses and then go on to stories and discussions of other things.
After that, though…. Tempus went out to work on the car and I struggled to keep doing something useful. I finally gave up when he was done around 4:30 and went in the back I woke around 7:30, but curled up and read for about another hour before I felt up to doing anything. I ended up mostly doing paperwork, but nothing critical because my brain was plowing through mush…..
By then I was a little more together, so spent time hunting cheese links and reading up. I got them sorted onto a couple of pages on the blog, again (House Capuchin, not Ancient Light) and then quit for the night. I watched Riverdance again before turning in. That is still just as amazing as when it first ran on OPB decades ago.
…and ended up waking with a screech in the middle of the night. Thankfully, I didn’t wake Tempus, he was in the dead-to-the-world state that he hits sometimes…. I had those darned blood tests on Tuesday and that *always* makes me have nightmares, later.
I was sitting here are the computer just now and heard a tapping on the door. It was light and I couldn’t imagine who might be tapping on the glass like that at 9:30 in the morning. I looked out the window, but didn’t see anyone, so I got up and went around the display case to look through the door itself. It was a crow! Tempus has been feeding them in the morning, just bits and scraps and leftovers, but still feeding them. I guess this guy was hoping to get ahead of the crowd!
So, today is House Capuchin’s project day. I’m going to be doing some cookery today and a number of people are supposed to stop by later to do some tasting. With any luck, we’re going to take a few things to a friend’s kitchen to bake in the late afternoon, but I won’t know until later if that’s going to work out. Yes, the shop is open for our usual hours.
Today’s plant is New Zealand Flax, Phormium Tenax. This is a very different plant from common flax or linseed, Linum usitatissimum. It is used mostly as an ornamental in the northern hemisphere, but at one time sustained a lively trade as a fiber. While the two plants are very different, they have similar magickal properties. These days the fiber is mostly used by paper artisans. – Masculine, Mercury, Fire, Hulda – Money spells, add to coins and carry, flax in the shoe averts poverty. >>>> A basket made in our Herbs Workshop of the leaves >>>>> For protection while asleep, add to mustard seed, put both opposite cold water. Protection from evil entering, scatter with red pepper by door. Health and healing rituals, sprinkle altar with flaxseed. More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PhormiumFor the traditional uses of the plant fiberhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Zealand_flax
A Day of Remembrance for Oleg the Prophet (Visionary) – Sjechen (February) 3
The Varangian’s (Viking’s) king was a good example of the Rus-Viking. His history is very instructive, yet at the same time mysterious. Volhv of Kiev (a pagan wizard) prophesied to Oleg that his horse would die in battle but afterward he would also be killed. He triumphed under the Byzantines, and after his final battle, his shield was hung on the Gate of Tsargrad in Constantinople. (Volhv: a priest of Slavic Paganism; analogous to the scandinavian “Godhi”) (Tsargrad: The Old Russian name for Constantinople) Wikipedia has an article here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oleg_of_Novgorod
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. Dark of the Moon, End of the cycle – In the time leading up to the “New Moon” you may do banishings and other baneful magicks and healings that require blasting a disease away, as well as using the time for introspection and self-work. Do scrying, now. Good for reversing circumstances. God/dess Aspect: The One Beyond, the Watchers in the Outer Dark, psychopomps – Associated God/desses: Hecate, Kali, Arianhrod, Anja, Kore in the Underworld, Ereshkigal who was Inanna, Set/Seth, Hades, Osiris. Phase ends at 1:04am on 2/4.
New Moon (exact at 4:04 p.m. EST).
In this dark-of-the-Moon time, use binoculars to get acquainted with the double stars and asterisms in and around the familiar Hyades. A few degrees north of Aldebaran and the main Hyades V pattern (mapped at right) are two asterisms I call the Jumping Minnow and Dragonfly, imagining warm summer afternoons by a riverbank far from these icy winter nights. But Matt Wedel has a different take on them in his Binocular Highlight column in the February Sky & Telescope, page 43. The Hyades V, like the Minnow and Dragonfly, has noteworthy star pairs for your binocs that help define its unique look. Click over to Bob King’s Happy Nights with the Hyades for details and more maps.
Algol is at minimum brightness for a couple hours centered on 11:55 p.m. EST (8:55 p.m. PST). It takes several additional hours to fade and to rebrighten. The variable star Algol in Perseus appears faintest at 11:55 p.m. EST, when it shines at magnitude 3.4. If you start watching it immediately after darkness falls, you can see it dim from its peak brightness (magnitude 2.1) to minimum and then start brightening again. This eclipsing binary star runs through a cycle from minimum to maximum and back every 2.87 days, but the drop from peak brightness and subsequent rise lasts only about 10 hours. Algol appears nearly overhead soon after darkness falls and descends toward the northwestern horizon well after midnight.
Uranus (magnitude 5.8, at the Aries-Pisces border) is well up in the southwest right after dark, near Mars. It’s visible in binoculars if you have a good finder chart (and know the constellations well enough to see where to start with the chart). Uranus will pass less than 1° from Mars on February 11th through 13th. Stay tuned!
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
Su 3 High 12:14 AM 6.7 7:32 AM Rise 7:01 AM 3
~ 3 Low 5:29 AM 3.3 5:28 PM Set 4:31 PM
~ 3 High 11:15 AM 8.2
~ 3 Low 6:16 PM -0.2
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Falling down is part of LIFE…Getting back up is LIVING
~ A man may devote himself to death and destruction to save a nation; but no nation will devote itself to death and destruction to save mankind. – Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834) English writer
~ Everyone who got to where they are had to begin where they were. – Richard Paul Evans
~ We are standing in the vibration of a sacred prophecy. The prophecy tells us that consciousness is preparing the spirit of the feminine, the spirit of the grandmothers. In the prophecy, we shall walk into the light united from the four directions. – Flordemayo, one of our Wise Women
~ He that cannot forgive others breaks the bridge over which he must pass himself; for every man has need to be forgiven. –Thomas Fuller
Deep down within the frozen brook
I hear a murmur faint and sweet,
And lo! The ice breaks as I look,
And living waters touch my feet. –Jane Goodwin Austin (1831–94)
Three Flavours Soup
5 cups light, clear chicken broth
10 fresh medium shrimp or ¼ pound cooked baby shrimp
8 water chestnuts
2 green onions
1 teaspoon salt
Wash, shell and devein shrimp. Slice water chestnuts into thin circles. Mince entire green onions. Bring stock to boil with onions and water chestnuts. Add shrimp and salt. Return soup to a boil.
Hoppin John Soup – Inspired by The Seasonal Detox Diet, by Carrie L’Esperance (Inner Traditions, 2002).
Many of us eat the traditional Southern black-eyed pea dish Hoppin’ John for good luck on New Year‘s Day, but those great little peas are so rich in nutrients (including minerals, Vitamins A and B, folic acid, pantothenic acid, and niacin) that it makes sense to include them in our diets all through the month of January.
This soup has a hint of spiciness from cayenne and dried mustard, while garlic, rosemary, and thyme add healing and flavor to this perfect showcase for those fabulous little pea-beans. A lovely, lighter way to enjoy the health benefits of black-eyed peas: this soup is sure to bring us good luck!
6 cups vegetable stock
8 cups water
one 5-inch piece of fresh rosemary sprig
1 bay leaf
5 garlic cloves
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons yellow mustard powder
2 1/4 cups dried black-eyed peas
3/4 cup short-grain brown rice
2 cups diced celery
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
- In a large soup pot, add stock, water, rosemary, bay leaf, garlic, cayenne, dry mustard, and black-eyed peas. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer partially covered for 1 1/2 hours, then remove bay leaf and rosemary sprig.
- In a separate saucepan, heat 2 cups water to a boil, then add brown rice and return to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook, covered, until rice is tender, around 40 minutes. Add cooked rice, celery, thyme, and onion to the black-eyed pea mixture and cover tightly, simmering and allowing flavors to blend for 30 minutes.
Serves 8 to 10.
¾ cup cooked squash
2 cup milk
2 cups water
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
salt and pepper to taste
Strain the squash and add the milk and water together with it in a pot. Bring the mixture to the boiling point, add the flour and butter. Cook until the liquid becomes thick, stirring constantly. Add your salt and pepper to taste.
Wisconsin Cheese Soup
5 tablespoons butter
2 medium carrots, finely chopped
2 celery ribs, finely chopped
1 medium onion, finely chopped
½ green pepper, seeded and finely chopped
5 mushrooms, chopped
½ cup cooked ham, finely chopped
½ cup flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 quart of chicken broth
1 quart of milk
½ teaspoon paprika
¼ teaspoon cayenne
½ teaspoon dry mustard
1 pound sharp cheddar cheese, grated
salt and pepper to taste
In a large heavy kettle, melt butter; add carrots, celery, onion, green pepper, mushrooms and ham. Cook over medium heat until vegetables are crisp tender, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Do not brown. Add flour and cornstarch, cook, stirring constantly for about 3 minutes.
Add broth to pot and cooking, stirring until slightly thickened. Add milk, paprika, cayenne and mustard. Stir in cheese gradually, stirring until cheese is melted. To avoid curdling, do not allow soup to boil after cheese is added. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Silliness – Good Advice – Military Style – Just remember, if you crash because of weather, your funeral will be held on a sunny day.