Fog! After being cooler yesterday, it’s to be expected. There was fog yesterday morning, too. 55F, wind at 2-4mph and gusting, AQI33, UV8. 10% chance of rain today and tonight. It should be sunny, once the fog burns off and staying closer to 60F. The forecast is more sun than cloud, now. No chance of rain.
Still sick. I spent yesterday in bed, coughing…. Tempus had the shop open and says he was pretty busy for at least part of the afternoon.
Today’s Feast is Ólavsøka, a big midsummer festival in the Faroe Islands. Parliament opens on this day. The name is St. Olaf’s Wake, after the death of St. Olaf in 1030CE, but the parliament predates that. There’s a concert and boat races, football and a bunch of other stuff going on…and it actually starts the night of the 28th… http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%93lavs%C3%B8ka
Today’s plant is Candy Flower, Claytonia siberica, (also called Siberian Spring Beauty, Siberian Miner’s Lettuce or Pink Purslane) is a flowering plant in the family Montiaceae, native to Siberia and western North America. A synonym is Montia sibirica. The plant was introduced into the United Kingdom by the 18th century where it has become very widespread. It is similar to Miner’s Lettuce in properties, but not as edible. – Feminine, Moon, Water, – Sprinkling it inside the home brings happiness, so it’s good in floor washes or new home blessings. Carry it with you for luck and to protect from violence. Put it into sleep pillows or add to a dream catcher to keep away nightmares. I’ve actually slipped it between the mattress and sheets for this purpose. This one is also a spirit-lifter. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Claytonia_sibirica
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 8/3 at 8:59am. 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 8/1 at 8:59pm.
Comet C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE) continues to delight as an evening comet. An hour after sunset, it’s roughly 30° high in the northwest. You can find it by drawing a line between the two rightmost stars in the Big Dipper’s cup — Dubhe (at the top) and Merak (bottom) — and continuing the line south another 15° from Merak to spot the comet. Magnitude 3 Al Kaphrah is nearby, about 3° north-northeast of NEOWISE. The comet is just a bit fainter than magnitude 2 and you’ll likely need binoculars or a small telescope to see it. But with optical aid, you should also spot the comet’s tail, which stands out best in photographs. NEOWISE recently passed Earth on July 23, when it was just 64.1 million miles (103.2 million kilometers) from our planet. As it continues to pull away from the Sun and Earth’s orbit, it will continue to dim, although observers can expect to enjoy this binocular object for at least the rest of the month.
We’re not yet halfway through summer, but already W-shaped Cassiopeia, a constellation of fall and winter evenings, is climbing up in the north-northeast as evening grows late. And the Great Square of Pegasus, emblem of fall, rises to balance on one corner just over the eastern horizon.
If you have a larger telescope with an aperture 10 inches or greater, this morning after moonset (around 1 A.M. local time) is the perfect time to observe the famous Eagle Nebula (M16), home to Hubble’s famous Pillars of Creation. Of course, you won’t get quite that good a view, but you’ll still enjoy this beautiful emission nebula and its embedded star cluster (NGC 6611) in detail, particularly if you’re set up for even some simple astrophotography. M16 is roughly 25° high at 1:30 A.M. local time for northern observers. You’ll find it in the same region of the sky as bright Jupiter and Saturn, so swing your scope to the planets before or after for some stunning views. A low-power eyepiece will make finding the nebula easier once you’re in the right region of sky, about 6.5° southeast of magnitude 3.3 Sinistra (Nu [ν] Ophiuchi). Once you’ve spotted the Eagle, you can increase the magnification and use averted vision — looking slightly away from the region you want to see — to bring out its dimmer, delicate detail. It may even appear to glow with a faint green light to your eye.
Mars rises due east around 11 or midnight daylight saving time, a bright yellow-orange firespark (magnitude –1.0) between Pisces and Cetus. Watch for it to rise below the Great Square of Pegasus. (On the night of July 28th, the Great Square’s vertical diagonal points down to Mars precisely.) By dawn Mars shines grandly high and bright in the south-southeast: a far-off bonfire in the heavens. In a telescope this week Mars grows from 13.5 to 14 arcseconds in apparent diameter, which is as big as it appears at some oppositions! But we’re still speeding toward it along Earth’s faster orbit around the Sun. Around this year’s opposition of Mars in early October, it will appear 22.6 arcseconds wide. Mars is still very gibbous, 86% sunlit. Look for its white South Polar cap and for subtler dark surface markings. To get a map of the side of Mars facing you at the date and time you’ll observe, use our Mars Profiler. The map there is rectangular; remember to mentally wrap it onto the side of a globe. (Features on the map’s edges become very foreshortened.)
Old Farmer’s Almanac July Sky Map – https://www.almanac.com/night-sky-map-july-summer-triangle
Goddess Month of Kerea runs from 7/11 – 8/8
Celtic Tree Month of Tinne/Holly, Jul 8 – Aug 4, Tinne (CHIN-yuh)
Runic half-month of Uruz/ Ur, 7/14-28 According to Pennick Ur represents primal strength, a time of collective action. A good time for beginnings! Pennick, Nigel, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books, Rochester, Vermont, USA, 1992 Runic half-month of Thurisaz/ Thorn/Thunor, 7/29-8/12 – Northern Tradition honors the god known to the Anglo-Saxons as Thunor and to the Norse as Thor. The time of Thorn is one of ascendant powers and orderliness. This day also honors the sainted Norwegian king, Olaf, slain around Lammas Day. Its traditional calendar symbol is an axe.
©2020 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Celtic Tree Month of Tinne/Holly, Jul 8 – Aug 4, Tinne (CHIN-yuh), holly – The holly (Ilex aquifolium L.) is a shrub growing to 10 m (35 feet) in open woodlands and along clearings in forests. Hollies are evergreen, and stand out in winter among the bare branches of the deciduous forest trees that surround them. Hollies form red berries before Samhain which last until the birds finish eating them, often after Imbolc. The typical “holly leaf” is found on smaller plants, but toward the tops of taller plants the leaves have fewer spiny teeth. Hollies are members of the Holly family (Aquifoliaceae). The common holly is often cultivated in North America, as are hybrids between it and Asiatic holly species.
Graves (1966) and others are of the opinion that the original tinne was not the holly, but rather the holm oak, or holly oak (Quercus ilex L.). This is an evergreen oak of southern Europe that grows as a shrub, or as a tree to 25 m (80 feet). Like the holly, the holm oak has spiny-edged leaves on young growth. It does not have red berries, but it does have red leaf “galls” caused by the kermes scale insect; these are the source of natural scarlet dye. Holm oaks are occasionally cultivated in North America.
Tu 28 Low 1:51 AM 0.6 6:00 AM Set 12:55 AM 52
~ 28 High 7:50 AM 5.2 8:45 PM Rise 3:27 PM
~ 28 Low 1:23 PM 1.8
~ 28 High 7:52 PM 7.8
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Make this an actual day!
~ You don’t have to go looking for love when it’s where you come from. – Werner Erhard
~ Either you will do now what it takes or 10 years from now you will wish that you had. – Paul V Harris
~ Any road followed precisely to its end leads precisely nowhere. Climb the mountain just a little bit to test it’s a mountain. From the top of the mountain, you cannot see the mountain. – Frank Herbert (1920-1986) US writer
~ Do not rely on meditation to avoid problems. Without problems the seeking spirit could go mad. Therefore the sage says: reach liberation in the middle of turbulences. – Kyong Ho
I hear the red fox barking
On the moonlit hill,
And bullfrogs by the river
Where the reeds stand still.
All the night has voices.
But sometimes, suddenly,
It grows so quiet I know the world
Is listening with me. – Benjamin Rice (1903–78)
Corn Bread Ear Sticks – Recipe by StormWing
Purchase an iron mold shaped like little ears of corn in flea markets or kitchen supply shops, or look in grandma’s kitchen wherever she keeps her bakeware – there just might be one there already! Grease lightly and preheat in a 425 degree oven. You will need:
3/4 cup Flour
3/4 cup Yellow Corn Meal
1/4 cup Sugar
3/4 teaspoon Salt
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1 cup Milk (or Buttermilk if you prefer)
1/4 cup Shortening
Sift dry ingredients together. Add milk, eggs, shortening, and beat until smooth. Pour into preheated and greased molds and bake 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. – From Miss Daney’s Folklore, Magic and Superstitions
Bake corn bread sticks. You can find a cast-iron mold shaped like little ears of corn in kitchen supply shops. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Activities taken from “Green Witchcraft” by Anne Moura (Aoumiel)
- 1 cup flour
- 1/2 cup corn meal
- 1/4 cup of sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup milk
- 1/4 cup shortening
Sift dry ingredients together, add eggs, milk, and shortening, and beat until smooth. Pour into molds and bake for 20-25 minutes.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
- 3/4 cup butter, softened
- 2/3 cup sifted powdered sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla
- Dash of salt
- Optional powdered sugar
Grease a 9-inch fluted tart pan or a shortbread mold. Stir together the flour and cornmeal. In another bowl, beat butter, sugar, vanilla, and salt on medium high until combined. Add the flour mix and beat. Put the dough into the pan and score into 12 wedges. Prick each piece with a fork three times, all the way through. (If you’re using a shortbread mold, don’t do this step.) Bake at 325º F for 25-30 minutes. Cool in the pan on a rack for 5 minutes.
Yield: 12 wedges
Source: Better Homes and Gardens, Christmas Cookies
Use for: Yule, Lughnasadh, Mabon
Silliness – To Help You Smile – I just went to the cafe and my barista was wearing something over her mouth.
I asked, “Is that a surgical mask?”
and she said, “No, it’s just a coughy filter.”