There are some bits of cloud, but the sky is mostly blue and the sunshine is bright. 42F, wind at 9mph, AQI26, UV2. Starting on Tuesday, there’s a small chance of rain, but out 10 days there’s no more than 50% chance of showers.
Yesterday started late for me and I was groggy for quite some time. I did finally wake up and get started on my end of things, while Tempus was involved in watching some funny videos. I had some cookery that I wanted to do, so Tempus concentrated on one end of the table once he was done with those.
I made a good lunch from some pickled eggs and veg. Later I got a nap. Tempus was working in back right up until he left for Newport. I got started on cookery. I wanted to make potted ham and then do a small cake and maybe start the cracked wheat soaking for a seed cake.
At about 11:30 Tempus was starting the bulk drops. I got the ham done right around midnight, also setting up a crockpot with some of the carved off fatty bits, and took a break. He was going on the regular route at 12:45, carving some time off the bulk drop amounts… I finally got the cake in around 1:30 and it was done and iced, only slightly scorched, at about 2:10. That convection oven! <shaking head> I’m good at baking, but this one buffaloes me!
I went out to gaze at the Moon for a bit. It was near freezing, so I didn’t stay nearly as long as I would, normally. She had a gold halo around her at just-past-half. I got picked up around 4:15 and was home at 5pm. I didn’t want to stress my back too much, but I got Tempus his potted ham and cheese sandwich for a snack, at least. Jupiter was up, near Scorpio. Venus rises later, now. Tempus rolled in at 6:20.
Today Tempus is going to have to nap after we’re open. He has some errands to run in Newport, later. I’m going to keep working in the office space and maybe cut some headers, if I can muster the energy. I’m up really early with not enough sleep and no clue why.
Today’s plant is the Bells of Ireland, Moluccella laevis (Molucca balmis, Shellflower, Shell flower) is a summer flowering annual, native to Turkey, Syria and the Caucasus. It is cultivated for its spikes of flowers which look like green bells. In the language of flowers, it represents luck. It’s a member of the mint family as you can tell by the leaves! More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bells_of_Ireland
Today is the Ides of March, mostly known today for the death of Julius Caesar, but they were a religious celebration during the Roman Empire. They were sacred to Jupiter and Anna Perenna. “The ides of March have come,” meaning to say that the prophecy had not been fulfilled, to which the seer replied “Aye, Caesar; but not gone.” More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Assassination_of_Julius_Caesar and here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ides_of_March#Religious_observances and on Anna Perenna here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anna_Perenna
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
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 3/20 at 6:43pm Waxing Gibbous Moon – From seven to fourteen days after the new moon. For spells that need concentrated work over a ¼ moon cycle this is the best time for constructive workings. Aim to do the last working on the day of the Full moon, before the turn. Keywords for the Gibbous phase are: analyze, prepare, trust. It is the time in a cycle to process the results of the actions taken during the First Quarter. During this phase you are gathering information. Give up making judgments; it will only lead to worry. Your knowledge is incomplete. Laugh. Analyze and filter. LOOK WITHIN. God/dess aspect: Maiden/Youth, but in the uncommitted phase, the Warriors – Associated God/desses: Dion, Dionysius, Venus, Thor. Phase ends at the Full on 3/19 at 9:43am.
Arcturus rises a half hour earlier now than it did a week ago. Look for it very low in the east-northeast after nightfall, and higher in the east later in the evening. It’s magnitude 0, one of the very brightest stars in the sky.
For those of you in the Southern Hemisphere, today marks the peak of the annual Gamma Normid meteor shower. The shower’s radiant — the point from which the meteors appear to originate — lies among the background stars of the southern constellation Norma the Square. This region lies below the horizon for observers north of 40° north latitude, but those farther south should keep their eyes open. The best views will come after midnight, once the radiant climbs higher and the waxing gibbous Moon sets. The shower typically produces about 6 meteors per hour at its peak.
Uranus is sinking out of sight in the west after dark.
Old Farmer’s Almanac Sky Map for February
Goddess Month of Moura, runs from 2/20-3/19
Celtic Tree Month of Nuin/Nion/Ash, Feb 18 – Mar 17, Nion (NEE-uhn)
Celtic Tree Month of Fearn/Alder, Mar 18 – Apr 14. Fearn (FAIR-n)
Runic half-month of Berkana/ Beorc, 3/14-29 Half-month ruled by the goddess of the birch tree; a time of purification for rebirth and new beginnings.
©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 15 Low 1:12 AM 3.6 7:29 AM Set 3:49 AM 54
~ 15 High 7:21 AM 7.4 7:22 PM Rise 1:09 PM
~ 15 Low 2:50 PM 0.5
~ 15 High 9:35 PM 5.7
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – We carry our mornings within us–let them out.
~ Then followed that beautiful season…Summer…. Filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light; and the landscape Lay as if new created in all the freshness of childhood. – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
~ Any place that anyone can learn something useful from someone with experience is an educational institution. – Al Capp (1909-1979) US cartoonist
~ Learn the Rules so you know how to break them properly. – HH the Dalai Lama
~ The function of art is to do more than tell it like it is-it’s to imagine what is possible. – bell hooks
All Nature seems at work. Slugs leave their lair—
The bees are stirring—birds are on the wing—
And Winter slumbering in the open air,
Wears on his smiling face a dream of Spring! – –Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772–1834)
Ostara Magick – Crafts
Egg Dyeing Article Au naturel: Color your eggs the old-fashioned way from Tea and Your Health, http://www.celestialseasonings.com/tea-health/egg-dyeing-article.html, By Lee Svitak Dean, Star Tribune Taste Editor, Pictures by Tom Wallace/Star Tribune
Piles of yellow onion skins, chunks of bright red beets, bunches of deep-green spinach leaves, even bags of fragrant Red Zinger tea, redolent with hibiscus flowers, filled the kitchen counter. Bottles of paprika, dill seed and turmeric stood at the ready, as did a pot of coffee. So did dozens of eggs and a jug of white vinegar.
We were dyeing eggs. And there wasn’t a PAAS coloring kit in sight.
Egg dyeing, by its very nature, makes a mess and, frankly, it’s even messier when the colors are made from from edible food. The homemade version also takes a bit longer to prepare than dye from a package.
But don’t let these cautions deter you. The homemade variety offers more of a challenge—and it’s fun, too. As many cooks know, that sense of curiosity and discovery is half the reason so many of us hang out in the kitchen. Making your own dye lets you experiment with the vagaries of color, from the leftovers in the refrigerator to the stock of spices in the pantry.
Many of the colors from homemade dye are a softer hue, and there’s more possibilities of shades in the color palette. But there is nothing precise about natural food dyes: You might get the colors you anticipate when using them; then again, you might not. The variations depend on what you’re using for dye—and how long you soak the egg. It also depends on the egg shells, which are as variable as snowflakes.
Though not readily apparent, shell texture differs from egg to egg—from smooth to rippled—as does the thickness of the shell. All of this affects how the egg picks up dye. So if you expect the unexpected when you’re using homemade dye, you won’t be disappointed.
There are two ways to color eggs with natural dyes: cold and hot dye.
Most directions recommend starting with hard-cooked eggs. The dye is then prepared separately, and in the last step the egg is soaked in the coloring (which usually is recommended to be hot). This method works fine with commercial food dyes, such as PAAS or Dudley, where eggs are dipped into color for only a few moments.
But with natural dyes—which take longer to imprint their shade—the eggs are soaked in the color for at least 15 minutes, which is the same amount of time it takes to hard-cook eggs. So eggs can be dyed at the same time they are being hard-cooked (they also will get a more uniform and saturated color as they roll around in the simmering dye).
The hot method of natural food dye means placing the eggs in a single layer in a non-aluminum pan. The eggs are covered with 1 inch of water and vinegar is added to the water to help the color adhere to the eggs. The dye materials—which include spices, fruits, vegetables and more (see chart at below)—are also added, and the whole mixture is brought to a boil, then reduced to a simmer for 15 to 30 minutes, depending on the desired color.
Whatever food is used to dye eggs, vinegar should be added to help the color adhere (but if you forget to add vinegar, don’t fret; the eggs will still be colored, but it likely will be lighter).
Which leads the cook to a familiar question: Can these dyed eggs be eaten? Well, it depends. Eggs should sit out no longer than two hours if they are to remain safe to eat. And hard-cooking them for more than 15 minutes will definitely toughen them up (though they will look beautiful). Also, some colors might seep into the egg white, which makes them less appetizing. So, you might want to use these colorful eggs for decoration only, or else refrigerate them until mealtime.
Cold method of dyeing
If you want to eat your colored eggs—or if you want to dye them a second time for added interest—try the cold method of coloring. In this case, to prepare the dye separately, add the edible materials to water, along with vinegar (see chart for quantities). Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until the dye is the preferred color, 15 minutes or more. Remove from heat and cool; strain. Dip cooked eggs in the dye for at least 15 minutes. The longer the eggs sit in the dye, the richer the hue will be.
Adapt the dye
If the dye isn’t dark enough, add more ingredients to deepen the hue—or let the eggs soak in the color for hours or overnight (in the refrigerator, of course).
You don’t necessarily have to stop after dyeing the eggs once. Dip them in a darker color for a second coating. (In this case, do not boil the eggs a second time; simply dip the egg in the second dye for 5 to 10 minutes). Some color combinations recommended by the Alberta (Canada) Egg Producers Board: coffee dye, then blueberry; turmeric and onion skins, followed by cranberries.
Once the dyed eggs are dry, they can be rubbed with vegetable oil for a sheen (if being used for decoration).
Martha Stewart wouldn’t stop at homemade dye—that would be just the beginning. Try one of these steps to make even more beautiful eggs:
- Onion wraps (for a tie-dye effect): Rub clean, uncooked eggs with vinegar, then wrap in onion skins and bind with kitchen string or rubber bands. Simmer eggs in plain water for 20 minutes. Then remove onion skins.
- Rubber bands: Use to create contrasts. On a white egg, the rubber band will prevent color where it is located. On a colored (dry) egg, a band will give a stripe of the original color if the egg is redipped in another.
- Patterns: Rub the cooked, dyed egg to remove some of the color after it is dry, or drip additional color onto the dry egg to make a pattern. Or wrap in onion skins or tiny leaves after the egg has been colored, but before it has dried (this will add a texture to the dye pattern). You also can use a clean sponge and dab at the wet colored egg to add a stippled effect. If making dye from powdered spices, some residue may linger on the egg.
- Marbleized: Stir a tablespoon of vegetable oil into some natural food dye (or other dye). Dip the egg into it for a marbleized look. Once dry, it can be dipped into another color for additional decoration.
- Mosiac: It’s not dyeing, of course, but since you’re in the kitchen anyway you can decorate hard-cooked eggs by glueing on spices from the kitchen: star anise, peppercorns, powdered spices or even tiny pasta or rice (the latter two could be dyed first).
Hints for the cook
- Wash uncooked eggs in mild soapy water before they are hard-cooked to remove any oily coating that might prevent the dye from adhering.
- To avoid staining your fingers, wear rubber gloves when working with reds, yellows and purples. And cover the table or counter with newspaper or a protective coating for the same reason.
NATURAL DYES FOR EGGS
- Pink/red: Fresh beets, pickled beet juice, pickled red cabbage juice, cranberries, frozen raspberries
- Orange: Yellow onion skins, paprika
- Deep yellow: Ground turmeric
- Pale yellow to light green: Spinach leaves, Golden Delicious apple peels
- Soft yellows: Orange or lemon peels, carrots tops or shredded carrots, celery seed, ground cumin
- Purple: Red Zinger® tea (by Celestial Seasonings)
- Blue: Canned blueberries, blackberries, red cabbage leaves, purple or red grape juice
- Beige to brown: Strongly brewed coffee, tea, walnuts, dill seeds
- Brown to orange: Chili powdered, ground cumin
Natural Food Dye – Makes 4 cups.
Add more of the coloring agent for a deeper hue.
- 1 Tbsp. spice or 4 c. chopped fruit or vegetable, or more
- 4 c. water, or more
- 2 Tbsp. white vinegar (per 4 c. water)
Combine spice or foodstuff with water and vinegar. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 to 30 minutes. Eggs can be colored (and cooked) in the dye while it is being prepared. Or they can be hard-cooked in advance, then dipped into the prepared dye (which can be either cold or hot). — Lee Svitak Dean is at email@example.com.
Reprinted with permission from the Star Tribune of Minneapolis, Minn. (Thursday, March 28, 2002, pp. T1, T8) Interactive Tea Guide >>
Additional Tea and Your Health Information
Teas and Herb Resources >> Natural Dyes for Easter Eggs http://www.icangarden.com/document.cfm%3Ftask%3Dviewdetail%26itemid%3D846%26categoryid%3D4 Tips for special effects and natural dyestuffs from your garden.
….and part 4…. Why Did the Chicken Cross the Road? From the viewpoint of other famous/infamous authors and other personalities…
MOSES: And God came down from the Heavens, and he said unto the Chicken, “Thou shalt cross the road.” And the chicken crossed the road, and there was much rejoicing.
FOX MULDER: You saw it cross the road with your own eyes. How many more chickens have to cross the road before you believe it?
JERRY FALWELL: Because the chicken was gay! Can’t you people see the plain truth? That’s why they call it the ‘other side.’ Yes, my friends, that chicken was gay. If you eat that chicken, you will become gay too. I say we boycott all chickens until we sort out this abomination that the Liberal media whitewashes with seemingly harmless phrases like ‘the other side.’ That chicken should not be crossing the road. It’s as plain and as simple as that.
AL SHARPTON: Why are all the chickens white?
GRANDPA: In my day, we didn’t ask why the chicken crossed the road. Someone told us that the chicken had crossed the road and that was good enough for us.
RICHARD NIXON: The chicken did not cross the road. I repeat, the chicken did NOT cross the road.
JERRY SEINFELD: Why does anyone cross a road? I mean, why doesn’t anyone ever think to ask “What the heck was this chicken doing walking around all over the place, anyway?”
SIGMUND FREUD: The fact that you are at all concerned that the chicken crossed the road reveals your underlying sexual insecurity.
BILL GATES: I have just released the Chicken Office 2000, which will not only cross roads, but will lay eggs, file your important documents and balance your checkbook.
BILL GATES 3.0: I have just released eChicken2013, which will not only cross roads, but will lay eggs, file your important documents and balance your checkbook. Internet Explorer is an integral part of e-Chicken2013. This new platform is much more stable and will never reboot.
OLIVER STONE: The question is not, “Why did the chicken cross the road?” Rather, it is, “Who was crossing the road at the same time, whom we overlooked in our haste to observe the chicken crossing?”
ZEUS: Release the chickens!
CHARLES DARWIN: Chickens, over a great period of time, have been naturally selected in such a way that they are now genetically dispositioned to cross roads.
MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.: I dream of a world where *all* chickens will be free to cross roads without having their motives called into question.
NICCOLO MACHIAVELLI: The point is that the chicken crossed the road. Who cares why? The end of crossing the road justifies whatever motive there was.
ALBERT EINSTEIN: Whether the chicken crossed the road or the road moved beneath the chicken depends on your frame of reference.
Tempus adds: “It’s all about perspective!”
SARAH PALIN: The chicken crossed the road because, gosh-darn it, he’s a maverick!
BARACK OBAMA: Let me be perfectly clear, if the chickens like their eggs they can keep their eggs. No chicken will be required to cross the road to surrender her eggs. Period.
JOHN McCain: My friends, the chicken crossed the road because he recognized the need to engage in cooperation and dialogue with all the chickens on the other side of the road.
HILLARY CLINTON: What difference at this point does it make why the chicken crossed the road.
GEORGE W. BUSH: We don’t really care why the chicken crossed the road. We just want to know if the chicken is on our side of the road or not. The chicken is either with us or against us. There is no middle ground here.
COLIN POWELL: Now to the left of the screen, you can clearly see the satellite image of the chicken crossing the road.
BILL CLINTON: I did not cross the road with that chicken.
PAT BUCHANAN: To steal the job of a decent, hardworking American.
JOHN KERRY: Although I voted to let the chicken cross the road, I am now against it! It was the wrong road to cross, and I was misled about the chicken’s intentions. I am not for it now, and will remain against it.
AL GORE: I invented the chicken.
DICK CHENEY: Where’s my gun?
- PHIL: The problem we have here is that this chicken won’t realize that he must first deal with the problem on this side of the road before it goes after the problem on the other side of the road. What we need to do is help him realize how stupid he is acting by not taking on his current problems before adding any new problems.
OPRAH: Well, I understand that the chicken is having problems, which is why he wants to cross the road so badly. So instead of having the chicken learn from his mistakes and take falls, which is a part of life, I’m going to give this chicken a NEW CAR so that he can just drive across the road and not live his life like the rest of the chickens.
ANDERSON COOPER: We have reason to believe there is a chicken, but we have not yet been allowed to have access to the other side of the road.
NANCY GRACE: That chicken crossed the road because he’s guilty! You can see it in his eyes and the way he walks.
MARTHA STEWART: No one called me to warn me which way the chicken was going. I had a standing order at the Farmer’s Market to sell my eggs when the price dropped to a certain level. No little bird gave me any insider information.
BARBARA WALTERS: Isn’t that interesting? In a few moments, we will be listening to the chicken tell, for the first time, the heart warming story of how it experienced a serious case of molting, and went on to accomplish it’s lifelong dream of crossing the road.
ARISTOTLE: It is the nature of chickens to cross the road.
JOHN LENNON: Imagine all the chickens in the world crossing roads together, in peace.
BUDDHA: Asking this question denies your own chicken nature.
RALPH WALDO EMERSON: The chicken did not cross the road; it transcended it.
TRUMP. Chickens should not be able to cross roads. They bring disease and crime. We need to build a wall!
DR SEUSS: Did the chicken cross the road? Did he cross it with a toad? Yes, the chicken crossed the road, but why it crossed I’ve not been told.
ERNEST HEMINGWAY: To die. In the rain.
COLONEL SANDERS: Did I miss one?