It’s really wet out there, raindrops speckling puddles in the parking lot, but the wind has died down. There was a 72mph gust recorded up on Alsea Heights yesterday and power was out all over the county. Lines were down, a pole caught fire, “interesting” weather! 49F, wind at 2mph and gusting into the teens, AQI41, UV1. The rain should slack off to showers as the day goes on and then come back tomorrow night. Monday might be dry, but the rest of the forecast is all showers and rain.
Thursday flew past. Tempus, Amor and I were all very sleepy and took turns napping. We had customers in the shop, but not a whole lot. Amor decided to treat us to dinner at the China Restaurant, which was really nice. The rest of the evening was a lot of talking until Tempus headed for Newport and then Amor and I talked until got picked up at 5am!
It was only spitty, not really raining, but the wind! Whee! Tempus resorted to walking a lot of the papers up to doors, when he usually can just toss them, to defeat the wind’s caprice. It wasn’t so bad as we started Bayshore, although there was a lot of tree debris down all over, but the wind picked up as we were finishing and trees were really thrashing up on Alsea Heights, roaring in the evergreens.
A lot of the lighted displays were out, maybe because of the weather? …but despite that we added more, 11 in Bayshore and then three up Bayview. In Alsea Heights it was possible to see some lighted displays on the hills behind town and along Crestline that you can’t see from below, too.
I got dropped off at home after that point and then Tempus picked up Amor and they finished the route together while I got some sleep after finishing the batch of pickled eggs. Unfortunately, they got to the point where Tempus always asks me, “How many left?” and the reply is supposed to be, “9!”…. there were 10… <groan> So he had to retrace part of the route to check and ended up leaving off what might have been extra papers, but some folks had already gotten theirs by that time. <sigh> So they were both very sleepy.
We got the shop open on time and I dozed back off in back. Tempus woke me in time for class and we finished Lesson 2 (Correspondences) with some additions from the sofa out of a sleepy Amor when something caught his ear.
After that I got the Yule Sabbat script finished up while Tempus and Amor ran errands in Newport. Susanne brought decorations for the altar and eventually then altar was readied, Wassail made, Amor was back and putting away some shopping, Tempus ran his check over to the bank and gradually order came out of chaos.
We had a good Circle. The Child is Born. The Wheel has Turned! Light is Returning to the World! Susanne brought a spinning lighted globe that had stars and snowflakes and deer all over the room. The altar was bright with greens and touches of silver and white and birch logs. The Gifting Goddesses and the Holy Child appeared with gifts of the season.
We’ll have the shop open at 11 today. We’re not sure whether there’s going to be an Herbs Workshop today, since everyone is kinda busy, although if anyone comes in we do have things to work on. I’m quite sure I’m going to be glad to sit and rest and stitch during Sewing Time, though! I still have a lot of cooking to finish before tomorrow. I’m heading in back to set a crockpot beef stew, first and then we’ll see how far I get before workshop time.
Today’s plant is the trillium, specifically the varieties for our state, of the Giant Purple Wakerobin, the Idaho Trillium and Round Leaf Trillium. These are one of the characteristic flowers of the Oregon spring forests, the flowers of spring called Wakerobin since in many places robins and trilliums appear at the same time. It is also called Birthroot and has been used medicinally to control bleeding. Tripartite petals and flower make this an unusual plant and since they grow widely separated in the undergrowth of forests, they’re striking when you come across them. – Feminine, Venus, Water – Carry the root to attract money and luck or – Masculine, Venus & Saturn, Earth – the magicks of trillium are concerned with boundaries and lust. ….and they’re beautiful! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trillium Yes, it’s odd to have two sets of correspondences for one plant, but that’s the way this one works!
Yule/Winter Solstice is the Wicca celebration of the birth of the Sun, the return of the God to the physical world. Today the Holly King lays down his crown for the Oak King. We work with a lot of myths and folklore from around the world, too, but the return of hope, the spark of new life is what we’re working with here. Today is also the beginning of the new year and the end of the first year of the new Cycle in the Mayan Long Count among other things. There is always hope that things will get better, that the world will not end and that the Sun will always rise in the morning, bringing us Light and Joy and Love. Blessed Yule!
The shop opens at 11am today. 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 12/25 at 9:13pm. 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 12/21 at 9:13am. 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 12/24 at 9:13am.
Earth’s winter solstice occurs at 18:19 p.m. PST. At that moment, the Sun reaches its farthest point south in the sky. The solstice marks the official beginning of winter in the Northern Hemisphere, and tonight has more hours of darkness than any other. From mid-northern latitudes, however, the earliest sunset occurred about two weeks ago and the latest sunrise won’t happen until early January. Tonight is the longest night of the year in the Northern Hemisphere; the shortest night in the Southern Hemisphere. The solstice occurs at 11:19 p.m. EST (8:19 p.m. PST), marking the start of northern winter, when the Sun begins its six-month return northward in the sky of Earth.
If you’re game for a quick evening challenge, try to spot Neptune through binoculars. The distant planet lies halfway to the zenith in the south-southwest near the end of evening twilight and doesn’t set until nearly 11 p.m. local time. The magnitude 7.9 world appears against the backdrop of Aquarius, 1.3° west-southwest of the 4th-magnitude star Phi (φ) Aquarii. You’ll need binoculars to spy Neptune and a telescope to see its blue-gray disk, which spans 2.3″.
Have you ever watched a Sirius-rise? Find an open view right down to the east-southeast horizon, and watch for Sirius to come up about two fists at arm’s length below Orion’s vertical Belt. This will happen sometime around 8 p.m., depending on your location. When a star is very low, it tends to twinkle quite slowly and often in vivid colors. Sirius is bright enough to show these effects well, especially with binoculars.
This is the time of year when M31, the Andromeda Galaxy, passes your zenith shortly after dark (if you live in the mid-northern latitudes). The exact time depends on your longitude. Binoculars will show M31 just off the knee of the Andromeda constellation’s stick figure; see the big evening constellation chart in the center of Sky & Telescope.
Jupiter (magnitude –1.8) moves farther to the lower right of Venus in twilight and becomes ever trickier to spot before it sets. The gap between them increases from 13° to 20° this week.
Old Farmer’s Almanac Sky map for December – https://www.almanac.com/sky-map-december-2019
Goddess Month of Astrea runs from 11/28 – 12/25
Celtic Tree Month of Ruis/Elder Nov 25 – Dec 22
Celtic Tree Month of Secret of the Unhewn Stone Dec 23
Celtic Tree Month of Beth Birch Dec 24 – Jan 20
Runic half-month of Jera/ Jara 12/13-12/27 – Jara signifies the completion of natural cycles, such as fruition, and has a more transcendent meaning of mystic marriage of Earth and Cosmos.*Ø* Wilson’s Almanac free daily ezine | Book of Days | December 13
©2019 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Ruis/Elder Nov 25 – Dec 22 – Ruis – (RWEESH), elder – Celtic tree month of Ruis (Elder) commences (Nov 25 – Dec 22) – Like other Iron Age Europeans, the Celts were a polytheistic people prior to their conversion to (Celtic) Christianity. The Celts divided the year into 13 lunar cycles (months or moons). These were linked to specific sacred trees which gave each moon its name. Today commences the Celtic tree month of Elder.
Elder or Elderberry (Sambucus) is a genus of fast-growing shrubs or small trees in the family Caprifoliaceae. They bear bunches of small white or cream coloured flowers in the Spring, that are followed by bunches of small red, bluish or black berries. The berries are a very valuable food resource for many birds. Common North American species include American Elder, Sambucus canadensis, in the east, and Blueberry Elder, Sambucus glauca, in the west; both have blue-black berries. The common European species is the Common or Black Elder, Sambucus nigra, with black berries.
The common elder (Sambucus nigra L.) is a shrub growing to 10 m (33 feet) in damp clearings, along the edge of woods, and especially near habitations. Elders are grown for their blackish berries, which are used for preserves and wine. The leaf scars have the shape of a crescent moon. Elder branches have a broad spongy pith in their centers, much like the marrow of long bones, and an elder branch stripped of its bark is very bone-like. The red elder (S. racemosa L.) is a similar plant at higher elevations; it grows to 5 m (15 feet). Red elder extends its native range to northern North America, and it is cultivated along with other native species, but common elders are seldom seen in cultivation. Elders are in the Honeysuckle family (Caprifoliaceae).
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Sa 21 Low 1:37 AM 1.7 7:49 AM Rise 2:36 AM 32
~ 21 High 8:08 AM 8.4 4:40 PM Set 1:58 PM
~ 21 Low 3:01 PM 1.0
~ 21 High 9:01 PM 6.1
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Difficult things take a long time, impossible things a little longer.
~ Summer afternoon, summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language. – Henry James
~ To practice magic is to be a quack; to know magic is to be a sage. – Eliphas Levi from The Threshold of Magical Science
~ Attitudes are more important than facts. – Karl Menninger
~ Beware of the person of one book. – Saint Thomas Aquinas
Come bring with a noise,
My merry, merry boys,
The Christmas log to the firing.
While my good Dame she
Bids ye all be free,
And drink to your heart’s desiring. – Robert Herrick (1591–1674)
Note Solstice 2019 – Waverly Fitzgerald kept up a website called “School for the Seasons” and the blog “Living in Season” for a couple of decades. She Crossed in just the last few weeks. Her input is all over this newsletter since she was a Loremaster that I greatly respect. Rest well, Waverly, and return on the Light when you are ready! This is a piece from the website from back in 2003.
How I celebrate Yule:
A description of my Advent ceremony, my solitary solstice ritual, my winter solstice party, the legendary Lucia parties at Bright House and a glimpse of Twelfth Night: www.schooloftheseasons.com/pdfdocs/midwtrcelebrate.pdf
When I put up my winter decorations, I always post a few winter solstice poems on my refrigerator. Then during my party, before I ask my guests to spend a few minutes standing in the quiet and the dark, I read a poem. These are my three favorite poems: www.schooloftheseasons.com/pdfdocs/midwtrpoems.pdf
Story for Solstice: Singing to Deer
During my celebration of Advent every year, we read a story while the Advent candles burn. Usually these are the wonderful stories that Helen Farias created for the Advent SunWheel. But last year, Pat Monaghan (the author of many fabulous books including O Mother Sun! and The Book of Goddesses and Heroines) sent me a link to a story she had written about singing to deer and I realized I would add it to my Winter Solstice ritual. It’s got everything a solstice story needs: magic, tenderness, a snowy day in the woods, and the recognition that’s what important about life is joy: Read it here: http://www.soulfulliving.com/patricia_monaghan.htm
Silliness – Yule Riddles – Q: What do you get if you cross an apple with a Christmas tree? A: A pineapple!