Featured photo by Jaroslav Gen.
It’s kinda grey out there, but not too gloomy and it looks dry. Warm, though…. 48F, Wind at 6mph, gusting into the teens, AQI13, UV1, no rain, yet, but this evening we’re looking for some. Sunday they’re calling for 2 1/2 inches of rain! Wow!
Yesterday was kinda difficult. We were still fighting boxes, but they finally all got to the back and onto the shelves and we were open around 2pm. I need to go through the boxes, because I’ve sorted them differently, now, so I can make a new inventory, but I think this will work better for the potlucks than what we’ve been doing.
The NDE meeting was just Phil and me. There were about 10 people who we had been talking to, but none of them showed. I’m going to do better this month about getting the advertising up. We’re running them from 5pm-9pm, show up anytime. Next one will be 3/21.
Arthur called during the evening. They’ve got the arrangements made for me to head up to Everett for the grandbaby. Unless Sioned decides she’s going to get here sooner, I’m heading north on Thursday and will be gone for a week.
Tempus headed out around 9pm. I only did the Bayshore part of the paper run with him, since my joints are still a little iffy after over-stressing them last weekend. Jupiter was already up, but there was thick cloud near the horizon so Venus didn’t show. The Moon had a beautiful halo, off and on. He was done at 6:15, much earlier than it’s been. Partly that was not needing to double-bag, but also the roads were clear and dry and not slick.
Today we’ve been busy….probably a dozen people through the door, already. That’s why this is later than usual… other than I overslept…. I’m going to be working on those photos today and on getting some of the sauces from the feast used up before they turn. Tempus is pretty tired. I got enough sleep, but he’s short by a couple of hours, as is usual on Friday.
Today’s plant is Nasturtium, Tropaeolum majus, (not watercress, which is true nasturtium). It’s certainly not native to the PNW, but grows well here. I love the brilliant oranges and yellows of the flowers. They’re yummy, too, with a slightly peppery taste, both leaf and flower and the seeds serve as a substitute for capers in pickles. The flowers stand for Victory in Battle, Patriotism and Affectation and are little used in magicks other than as symbols and foods for Ostara and Beltane celebrations because of their association with the Sun. They also can be used as a symbol for “sacrifice to the larger good” of soldiers, firemen and police, but are usually only seen at funerals in this context. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tropaeolum_majus
The Feast of the Perpendicular Sun happens twice a year in Egypt at the Tempus of Abu Simbel, built for Ramses II in the 13th century BCE. The aisle of the temple lights up with the sunrise until all the way at the back of the temple the Pharoah’s particular gods are illuminated. This happens on Ramses birthday and the anniversary date of his ascent to the throne, iow 2/22 and 10/22. Because of the Aswan Dam, the temple was disassembled and moved to higher ground in the 60′s, but the dates are still good, because they worked really hard to make that happen. More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abu_Simbel
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 3/6 at 8:04am. Waning Gibbous Moon – Best time for draining the energy behind illness, habits or addictions. Magicks of this sort, started now, should be ended before the phase change to the New Moon. – Associated God/dess: Hera/Hero, Cybele, Zeus the Conqueror, Mars/Martius, Anansi, Prometheus. Phase ends at the Quarter on 2/26 at 3:28am.
Winter still has a month to go, but a preview of spring stars awaits if you step outside after about 11 p.m. By then the waning gibbous Moon will be up in the east. Look for <<<< Spica to its lower right by about 7° (less than a fist at arm’s length). Four times farther to the Moon’s upper left shines brighter >>>>> Arcturus, pale yellow-orange.
One of the sky’s largest asterisms — a recognizable pattern of stars separate from a constellation’s form — occupies center stage on February evenings. To trace the so-called Winter Hexagon, start with southern Orion’s luminary, Rigel. From there, the hexagon makes a clockwise loop. The second stop is brilliant Sirius in Canis Major. Next, pick up Procyon in the faint constellation Canis Minor, then the twins Castor and Pollux in Gemini, followed by Capella in Auriga, Aldebaran in Taurus, and finally back to Rigel.
Old Farmer’s Almanac Sky Map for February
Goddess Month of of Moura, runs from 2/20-3/19
Celtic Tree Month of Nuin/Nion/Ash, Feb 18 – Mar 17, Nion (NEE-uhn)
Runic half-month of Sowulo/ Sigel, 2/12-26 It represents the power of the force of good throughout the world and is the harbinger of victory and ascendancy over darkness. Runic half-month of Teiwaz/Tyr, 2/27-3/13 This is a time of positive regulation, sacrifice and hard work in order to progress.
©2019 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Celtic Tree Month of Nuin/Nion/Ash, Feb 18 – Mar 17, Nion (NEE-uhn), ash – the common ash (Fraxinus excelsior L.) is a major tree of lowland forests in much of Europe, along with oaks and beeches. It grows to 40 m (130 feet) in open sites, with a broad crown reminiscent of American elm trees. Ash was and still is an important timber tree, and is a traditional material for the handle of a besom. The common ash is occasionally cultivated in North America, and similar native ash species are widely grown as street trees. Ashes are members of the Olive family (Oleaceae).
Ogam letter correspondences to study this month Oir – Spindle Ogam letter correspondences
Letter: TH, OI
Meaning: Finish obligations and tasks or your life cannot move forward.******
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
F 22 High 2:24 AM 8.4 7:05 AM Set 9:07 AM 93
~ 22 Low 8:31 AM 0.9 5:55 PM Rise 10:01 PM
~ 22 High 2:26 PM 8.2
~ 22 Low 8:48 PM 0.0
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – The grass isn’t always greener on the other side of the fence, sometimes you just have to stay home and mow your own lawn.
~ Sometimes there is a greater lack of communication in facile talking than in silence. – Faith Baldwin (1893-1978) US writer
~ When life knocks you down, try to land on your back. Because if you can look up, you can get up. – Les Brown
~ Be of love a little more careful than of anything. – e. e. cummings (1894-1962) u. s. poet
~ Once the curtain is raised, the actor is ceases to belong to himself. He belongs to his character, to his author, to his public. He must do the impossible to identify himself with the first, not to betray the second, and not to disappoint the third. – Sarah Bernhardt (1844-1923) French actor
Take the whole kit
with the caboodle
don’t deplore it
Shake hands with time
don’t kill it
Open a lookout
Dance on a brink
Run with your wildfire
You are closer to glory
leaping an abyss
than upholstering a rut – James Broughton (Little Sermons of the Big Joy)
Ostara Magick – Crafts
8 Egg Hunt Party Ideas (Some of these will be featured during the coming month!) – February 7, 2012 – Take a fresh approach to this classic spring activity! With these 8 sweet ideas for food, decorations, activities and more, plan an egg hunt party that’s fun for all ages.
8 Egg Hunt Party Ideas
- Papier Mâché Eggs: In lieu of the usual plastic eggs, craft one-of-a-kind versions with water balloons, tissue paper and our Papier Mâché Tutorial. Leave an opening big enough for wrapped candies, and seal off eggs after filling.
- Egg Scavenger Hunt: Along with putting candy or coins inside eggs, slip in riddles or clues leading to the next egg’s whereabouts, like “Rise and shine,” for an egg hidden by an alarm clock. Have all the clues eventually lead to the same egg, and crown the first to find it with bunny ears! Tip: When making clues, consider your party’s main age group. Keep things simple for toddlers with visual hints, incorporate current events for teenagers, and stump adults with related trivia.
- Paint-Dipped Baskets: Give plain baskets a quick shock of color with our Paint-Dipped Crafts How-To. Or go beyond the basket, dipping canvas tote bags instead. Clean paint pails do the trick, too.
- DIY Egg-Shaped Chalk & Crayons: The hunt’s come and gone, but the sugar rush is just beginning. Help channel all that extra energy by making egg-shaped chalk and crayons kids can tote home as favors.
- Big Kid Egg Decorating: Offer more advanced egg decorating to teenagers and adults; see 17 unique looks in our Not-Your-Average Eggs slideshow. For big crowds, try the leaf-printing technique, or turn eggs into critters and seedling planters.
- Instant Egg Centerpiece: Fill clear jars or vases with foil-wrapped chocolate eggs, cluster them together, and you’ve got one sweet centerpiece. Plus, it doubles as a help-yourself candy buffet!
- Tip: Let your centerpiece speak for itself by filling vessels with egg versions of Homemade Conversation Hearts, writing sweet spring-inspired sentiments like “No bunny loves you like I do.”
- 5-Minute Egg Wreath: Hot glue speckled malted-milk eggs to a foam wreath form, and it becomes a darling indoor decoration—just be sure to hang it where children and pets can’t reach it.
- Tip: Filled with colorful fruits, spiral bird feeders double as outdoor egg hunt décor.
- Homemade Egg Creams: Serve up old-fashioned fun with this classic fountain drink, which despite its name doesn’t contain any egg. For a real soda shop feel, mix them to order:
Step 1: Spoon 3-4 tablespoons chocolate syrup into a 16-ounce glass.
Step 2: Pour in about 1/2 cup of very cold milk.
Step 3: Stream in seltzer water until the foam is about 1” from the top of the glass. The trick to fluffy, pure white froth? As you add the seltzer water, gently stir together the syrup and milk at the bottom, being careful not to let the two mix.
Tip: For the rest of your menu, bring on the eggs. Try any—or all—of the 9 tried-and-true dishes in our Egg Recipe Slideshow.
What are your egg hunt traditions?
Most conventional egg dyes on the market are made with potentially harmful coloring agents, such as FD&C Red 40 and FD&C Yellow 6, and ingredients derived from petroleum. But colorful dyes that are safer for the environment and your family’s health can be made simply and cheaply with plant-based ingredients like pomegranate and spinach. Check out “Color Me Organic” for tips on having a greener Easter. © The Green Guide, 2008
Easter is coming and you’ve got your free-farmed or organic eggs—so why not dye the shells naturally, too? There are a number of vegetable- and fruit-based dyes that offer a broad range of beautiful colors and are better for you and the environment than artificial colors.
Easter eggs can be dyed using either a hot method or a cold method. If you choose the hot method, hard-boiling the eggs prior to dyeing them isn’t necessary; they’re “cooked” as they’re boiled in the dye. The cold method is safer for younger children who want to be part of the process; in this case, eggs should be hard-boiled first. In either situation, never plan on eating the eggs if they will be un-refrigerated for more than two hours.
Before dyeing your eggs, wash them with soap and water to remove any dirt or oils that might prevent the dye from sticking to the shell (this is also a good sanitary measure, should you decide to make an Egg Tree; see below).
Making Natural Dyes
For 4 cups of dye, you’ll need:
- 1 tablespoon of a spice or 4 cups of a chopped fruit or vegetable (see list below; adding more of these ingredients will give the dye a darker hue)
- 4 cups of water
- 2 tablespoons of white vinegar (to help the dye adhere to the eggs)
Combine the ingredients in a pot, and bring them to a boil, then reduce heat and let the mixture simmer for 15 to 30 minutes. The longer you allow the ingredients to simmer, the darker the color will become. If you choose to dye the eggs using the hot method, you can add raw eggs to the mixture while it’s being prepared. If using the cold method, remove the dye from the heat, allow it to cool, then run it through a strainer. Dip your hardboiled eggs in the dye for at least 15 minutes—longer if you want a darker color. When finished, you can rub the eggs with vegetable oil to give them a soft sheen.
For a little variation, you can have kids decorate the eggs with crayons or wax pencils before boiling and dyeing them. Or, wrap a rubber band around the egg to create contrast, either on a white egg, to prevent coloring, or on a dry, dyed egg, where it will give you a stripe of the original color if it’s redipped in another.
Older kids who can handle delicate egg shells might be interested in making an Easter Egg Tree, a tradition native to Germany and Austria.
Start by puncturing both ends of a raw egg with a pin. Work the pin a bit to make two small holes, and then blow out the egg’s contents into a bowl. Because of salmonella risks, it’s best if the adults handle this step, but to avoid it completely, you can purchase an egg blowing tool, sold at craft stores, or you can try Martha Stewart’s trick of using a rubber ear syringe from your local pharmacy to remove the contents. Once the shell is empty, dye it per the procedures above.
For your tree, use branches collected from your yard or an obliging roadside, and place them in a pot or vase filled with sand or pebbles. Tie a piece of twine or ribbon around half of a broken toothpick, and insert the toothpick into one of the holes you created initially. Then tie the other end of the twine or ribbon around one of your branches, and you can admire your eggs indefinitely.
Natural Egg Dyes
The following materials will give a range of intensities and surface textures to create a unique Easter egg basket or tree. Measurements where given are approximate; play with additional spices, vegetables and fruits for different results. Canned vegetables will work in place of fresh or frozen, but their colors will be paler. Also, herbal and black teas will give you varying shades of greens, reds and browns.
- Pink/red: Pomegranate juice, red onion skins, beets or the juice from pickled beets, pickled red cabbage juice, chopped rhubarb stalks, cranberries or cranberry juice, raspberries, red grape juice
- Orange: Yellow onion skins, paprika
- Dark orange: Chili powder
- Yellow: Orange or lemon peels, carrot tops or shredded carrots, celery seed, ground cumin, ground turmeric
- Green: Spinach
- Greenish yellow: Yellow Delicious apple peels
- Blue: Red cabbage, canned blueberries or blueberry juice, blackberries, purple grape juice
- Lavender: Small quantity of purple grape juice, violet blossoms plus two teaspoons of lemon juice, small quantity of red onion skins
- Brown/tan: Dill seeds, black walnut shells, strong or instant coffee, tea
Free Farmed and/or Organic Eggs
- Pete and Gerry’s (www.peteandgerrys.com)
- Phil’s Fresh Eggs (www.philsfresheggs.com)
- Gemperle Farms
- Also try out eggs produced by Food Alliance farmers (www.foodalliance.org – see Where to Buy)
- Image courtesy of Mary Jane’s Farm (www.maryjanesfarm.com)