It’s mostly cloudy with the occasional wink of a star. 44F, wind at 3mph and gusting, AQI38, UV7. 10% chance of rain today and 90% tonight. A SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY kicks in at 6pm and lasts until 5pm tomorrow. We could actually get 1/3 of an inch of rain, but after lunchtime it ought to dry out and Monday should be nice. The rest of the forecast is the usual showers and clouds with some sun possible on Friday.
Yesterday I got up way too early. I had only had about 3 hours sleep…ouching made it hard to sleep, but also the Virtual Culinary Day started at 10am…. I worked on a cheese page while that was going on, got a nap in the middle and we ended at 5pm. That was *great*! I got to talk foodie/garden things all day with a bunch of folks who can do the same. We shared recipes and how gardens are going and so on. When that ended I pulled up a cheese-making video and watched that.
I spent quite awhile outside on the plants, taking photos, weeding, trimming, harvesting, adding dirt and turning some of the pots. I planted my echinacea. I got Tempus to fill the big planter urn thingie from the dirt dumped on the ground, then added good stuff to the top and one of the cardoons. The smaller one went into the original pot with new dirt. Replanted the sweet cicely. I’ve got a nice big pot for my figs, too. For some reason (probably dumping) there was a lot of dirt/clay/potting soil dumped between the buildings. It’s now in a bucket thanks to Tempus.
I got the cheese page finished. If you want to take a look (it’s long!) https://wp.me/P8ngGY-3hv
Tempus was in back working on supper at that point. It turned out backwards because he found a pie in the fridge (mini-pie) and it turned out to be cherry, rather than meat. He made me a salad after that, then found some chili for himself. We had some of the harvested sorrel in a salad.
I got a nap, then tried to get back to work. I was tired enough that I didn’t get much done, but I got this put together and then decided to nap, if I could. Tempus had headed out at 1:30. At least it’s been dry tonight.
Today has some fun stuff. There’s a class on Roman Bread that I want to take and one on a 16th century apple tart, a few games classes and of course our Project Day. There’s more to do outside, still.
We still have some work to do on the aisles of the shop and it’s getting to the point where we need to pick up and put away, dust and set up. I have no idea if we’ll be “inspected” at the first of the month, but we have to be ready to be.
Today’s Plant is Mugwort, Artemisia vulgaris. One of the Nine Herbs of the old Anglo-Saxon charm, this herb has many different uses from insect-repelling to flavoring beer. It’s a bad one for pregnant women to ingest since it can induce abortion, since it’s a mild poison, but it’s used as a medicinal for various complaints and as a food. Some of the traditionak folk uses are: magical protection, to repel insects, especially moths, from gardens., as a remedy against fatigue, to protect travelers against evil spirits and wild animals. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nine_Herbs_Charmhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mugwort–Feminine, Venus, Air/Earth – Magical uses: Clairvoyance, psychic dreams, astral projection, protection, strength. Place in the shoes for protection and to prevent fatigue on long journeys. The fresh leaves rubbed on a magick mirror or crystal ball will strengthen divinatory abilities. Mugwort is perhaps the most widely used Witches’ herb of all time.
Listen, my children, and you shall hear of the midnight ride of Sybil Luddington? This is the 16-year-old girl who rode 40 miles, banging on doors and hollering in various villages and town to warn colonists of the approach of the British forces in Connecticut during the Revolutionary War. Wikipedia has a good article here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sybil_Ludington
There aren’t a lot of feasts listed for today unless you want some more hacked up x-tian martyrs, but the Wicca Book of Days lists a dance of the Banbara people in honor of the Tyi Wara, a half-man/half-beast figure, that has cultural meaning for them. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bambara_people
The shop is closed for the duration. Need something? Give us a call at 541-563-7154 or Facebook or email at firstname.lastname@example.org We should be able to accommodate requests and even allow a little shopping, one person at a time.
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 5/7 at 3:45am. Diana’s Bow – On the 3rd day after the new moon you can (weather permitting) see the tiny crescent in the sky, the New Moon holding the Old Moon in her arms. Begin on your goals for the next month. A good time for job interviews or starting a project. Take a concrete step! God/dess aspect: Daughter/Son/Innocence – Associated God/dess: Vesta, Horus. Phase ends on 4/27 at 7:26am.
The Moon passes 0.1° north of asteroid Vesta at 4 A.M. PDT. The Moon hangs left of Venus for skywatchers in North America. passing 6° south of Venus at 8 A.M. PDT. By this evening, Venus is 7° to the right of the waxing crescent Moon. These are the two brightest predictable celestial objects after the Sun; think photo opportunity. Find some good foreground scenery to frame them in.
To the southeast lies Orion the Hunter, tilting low toward the western horizon as he and other favorite winter sky constellations finally begin to disappear from nighttime view.
Uranus is in conjunction with the Sun at 5 A.M. EDT.
Pluto is stationary at 9 A.M. EDT, ending its eastern trek across the sky. It will now begin tracking slowly to the southwest, back toward the center of the constellation Sagittarius.
Venus (magnitude –4.7, in north-central Taurus) is the dazzling white “Evening Star” in the west during and after dusk. It’s now as bright as it gets and will remain so for the next two weeks. Look upper right of Venus for Capella, about two fists at arm’s length away. Roughly the same distance to Venus’s left is Betelgeuse. Much closer to Venus’s upper left, Beta Tauri (El Nath) is moving down toward it day by day. But Venus itself is also sinking lower. On April 24th it sets in the northwest about 2 hours after twilight’s end, but by May 1st it’s setting only about 1½ hours after. In a telescope, Venus has enlarged to about 37 arcseconds in diameter while waning in phase to be a thick crescent about 28% sunlit. It’s changing faster now, on its way to becoming a dramatically thin crescent low in twilight in late May as it nears conjunction with the Sun.
Old Farmer’s Almanac April Sky Map! – https://www.almanac.com/night-sky-map-april-minor-constellations
Goddess Month of Maia runs from 4/18 – 5/15
Celtic Tree Month of Saille Willow Apr 15 – May 12
Celtic Tree Month of Huath/Hawthorn, May 13 – Jun 9 –
Runic half-month of Mannaz/ Man, April 14-28 A time when the archetypal reality of the human condition should be meditated upon. Nigel Pennick, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books, Rochester, Vermont, USA, 1992, 1992 Runic half-month of Laguz/ Lagu, 4/29-5/13 Representing the flowing and mutable forces of water, Lagu symbolizes life, growth and waxing power of this time of year.
©2020 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Celtic Tree Month of Saille/Willow, Apr 15 – May 12 – The Willow in the Tree alphabet stands for the female and lunar rhythms of life. She is water-seeking, thriving from preference on the damp margins of lakes and streams or across the low-lying water meadows. Water and the tidal movements of the sea are governed by the pull of the moon. The moon in its monthly rhythms is female, contrasting with the male sun’s daily and yearly turnings. In several ways, the Celts held women in higher regard than we do today. On the material level, women were property owners, and whoever controlled the property controlled the marriage. Women of all types and ages appeared in the Celtic pantheon, the spiritual strength and life-giving qualities given by both female and male recognized equally. There were colleges of Druidesses – learned women and teachers – respected equally for their gifts of see-ship, often expressed through dreams, or night visions.
Magical Associations: Romantic love, healing, protection, fertility, magic for women.
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Su 26 High 2:35 AM 7.6 6:13 AM Rise 8:27 AM 6
~ 26 Low 9:36 AM -0.3 8:15 PM
~ 26 High 4:06 PM 6.1
~ 26 Low 9:21 PM 3.0
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – I allow peace to flow through me and keep my attention.
~ If we see you smoking we will assume you are on fire and take appropriate action. – Douglas Adams
~ Perseverance is failing 19 times and succeeding the 20th. – J. Andrews
~ Laughter is the shortest distance between two people. – Victor Borge
~ The real measure of a day’s heat is the length of a sleeping cat. – Charles J. Brady
And all the woods are alive with the murmur and sound of Spring,
And the rose-bud breaks into pink on the climbing briar,
And the crocus-bed is a quivering moon of fire
Girdled round with the belt of an amethyst ring. –Oscar Wilde (1854–1900)
Fun for the Kids – http://crystalforest3.homestead.com/beltane.html fun for grownups too 😉
- Let your child dress up like the May Queen. Make a pointed hat with a large piece of paper rolled, and tape crepe paper streamer from the top. Decorate with crayons, stickers, and glitter.
- Make easy wreaths for your head and for anyone who might celebrate Beltane with you.
- Make some lovely garden furniture for the fae folk.
- Try your hand at our Beltane Word Search or read the story of Meagan’s Beltane by Kat Dyer.
Pressing Flowers – http://www.chroniclesofavalon.com/beltane2003print.html
Selecting The Flowers – Garden flowers, leaves and ferns can be collected and pressed for use in making pictures or cards. A botanical collection can also be made with wild flowers (never rare flowers). Only take one or two common flowers from a spot where they are plentiful.
Flowers should be picked after mid-day when they are dry. They should be pressed as soon as possible after picking to avoid wilting. You will find through trial and error which flowers dry best and which colors are lasting. Do not try to press a very thick flower it would be best to disassemble and press just the petals. Remember fresh flowers, press quickly and carefully, dry well, and use small flowers (or thin pieces of thicker flowers).
Pressing The Flowers – Flowers can be pressed between sheets of blotting paper and placed in a telephone book with weights. A flower press can be used, consisting of layers of newsprint interleaved with corrugated cardboard. A press uses plywood board top and bottom, and pressure is applied by tightening the wing nuts on the four corner screws.
Flowers are then carefully laid in the press, with plenty of newspaper between layers, and cardboard after every few layers. Leave them undisturbed for two or three weeks for best results.
Using the Flowers (this section added by Anja ©2013 M. Bartlett and does not void previous copyright) – Pretty bookmarks and placemats can be made by laying pressed plants out on clear contact paper and then putting another sheet on top. Easier still is to laminate them with or without the paper. You may add cutouts or glitter or even flat sequins.
Flowers can be glued to a paper backing and framed in standard picture frames.
I have used pressed flowers and other plants in decoupage. Using a glue that will not discolor when Mod-Podge™ – ed or varnished or shellacked over, and using only the tiniest dots of glue, create your preferred arrangement and then let dry. Top coat by your preferred method.
People have set pressed flowers between sheets of glass for decoration for a long time. If you know how, metal foil may be set around the edges to make an airtight seal, or you can use glue and then add a fabric strip or even some kind of ribbon trim.
There are many kinds of color-your-own paperweights, coasters, mugs, keychain fobs and vases where pressed flowers can be glued to paper and inserted, or even fastened directly to the inside of the plastic.
Many pressed flowers can be laid on the tops of cookies or candies (obviously only the edible ones) or even on iced cakes. If you’re making an herbal balm or floral perfume, a pressed petal or dried rosebud can be set on top to identify the contents.
You can use pressed flowers to go effect in potpourri mixes or in spells where the visual effect is part of the magick.
Silliness – Battling Egos
A bishop, a judge, and a conductor were discussing their careers, and got into an argument about which of them was the greatest.
The judge said, “When I step into the courtroom, everyone stands to pay me respect.”
The bishop said, “They stand? I have people kneel before me and kiss my ring.”
To which the conductor replied, “Ha! I got you both beat. When I step on the podium people look down, cover their eyes, and say ‘Oh my God!’