The shop opens at 1pm. Winter hours are 1-6pm Thurs.-Mon. Featured photo by Ken Gagne. No Herbs tonight.
[posting at 10pm] Rain gauge at noon on 2/23 – 1/4 inch. Clear and cold, 30F, wind at 0-2mph and gusting, AQI 14-37, UV1. Chance of rain 15% today and 10% tonight. Still pretty cold today (44/31) with clouds early on. Friday (54/40) mostly sunny and starting to warm back up. Sat-Thu, showers and rain. Highs 47-53, Lows 44-48. Temps are going to drop after that as it clears again. 12 firespots.
I don’t actually remember much about Monday evening, so I’m guessing it just went as usual. Other than the gorgeous sunshine on Tuesday and Wednesday there’s not much to say other than, “COLD!” We got a few chores done, not nearly enough, but Tempus slept enough to catch up (sortof) and I worked on books and embroidery. I never got the sewing machine set up to use, but there’s a spot for it, now, if Tempus doesn’t fill it up with grumple. I spent most of the nights in bed with books and embroidery because otherwise I was running the heaters full blast and *still* had cold feet!
I did get some sorting accomplished. My floss stash had gotten into a terrible state and in the process I found the split rings that we need for the bookmarks, so Tempus is going on those again. I have my pots for the dahlias dripping out. I’m going to try to get paper in them tonight, so that Tempus can get potting soil into them a few at a time and I can get those tubers planted.
Today is our usual Thursday, although still no Herbs Workshop. Tempus has both bulk route and subscribers to do tonight, so it’s a long one for him. We’ll be open at 1pm and I have books and plant watering to do.
Today’s plant is the Pacific Blackberry, Rubus ursinus. There are several species of blackberries that grow in the PNW, the nasty invasive one being the Himalayan blackberry, Rubus armeniacus. Here are pictures so that you can compare the blossoms, ursinus on the left and armeniacus on the right. Ursinus (from the Latin for “bear”) also has narrower leaves and reddish canes. It is the ancestor of Marionberries, Boysenberries & parent of Loganberries, too. Feminine, Venus, Water, Brigit, Healing, Money, Protection – Carry leaves for money, use blackberry leaves in spring water as healing for burns, in incense for Lughnasadh.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pacific_blackberry
Dragobete is a spring festival of Romania, rather like secular Easter customs and Valentine’s day in one package. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dragobete “Dragobete is a traditional Romanian holiday originating from Dacian times and celebrated on February, the 24th. Specifically, Dragobete was the son of Baba Dochia, which stands for the main character in the pagan myth related to spring arrival and the end of the harsh winter.”
“The day is particularly known as “the day when the birds are betrothed”. It is around this time that the birds begin to build their nests and mate. On this day, considered locally the first day of spring, boys and girls gather vernal flowers and sing together. Maidens used to collect the snow that still lies on the ground in many villages and then melt it, using the water in magic potions throughout the rest of the year. Those who take part in Dragobete customs are supposed to be protected from illness, especially fevers, for the rest of the year. If the weather allows, girls and boys pick snowdrops or other early spring plants for the person they are courting. In Romania, Dragobete is known as a day for lovers, rather like Valentine’s Day.”
“It is a common belief in some parts of Romania that, during this celebration, if you step over your partner’s foot, you will have the dominant role in your relationship. Dragobete customs vary from region to region.
In neighbouring Bulgaria, the custom of stepping over one’s partner’s feet traditionally takes place during weddings, and with the same purpose, but it is not believed to be connected to Dragobete.”
Winter hours are 1-6pm Thurs.-Mon. Need something off hours? Give us a call at 541-563-7154 or Facebook message or email at email@example.com 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 3/2 at 9:35am. 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 2/25 at 9:35pm.
It’s late February, so Orion stands at his highest in the south at the end of twilight. Here he looks smaller than you probably remember him appearing early in the winter when he was low. You’re seeing the “Moon illusion” effect. Constellations, not just the Moon, look bigger when they’re low.
Under Orion’s feet, and to the right of Sirius now, hides Lepus the Hare. Like Canis Major, this is a constellation with a connect-the-dots that really looks like what it’s supposed to be. He’s a crouching bunny, with his nose pointing lower right, his faint ears extending up toward Rigel (Orion’s brighter foot), and his body bunched to the left. His brightest two stars, 3rd-magnitude Alpha and Beta Leporis, form the back and front of his neck, respectively.
And what’s under Lepus? Columba the Dove, a modestly dim constellation that doesn’t look like a dove any way I can connect the dots. See the constellation chart in the center of the February Sky & Telescope. Its brightest star, Alpha Columbae or Phact, is magnitude 2.6. To find it, draw a line from Rigel through Beta Leporis and extend it the same distance straight on.
Following its conjunction with the Sun earlier this month, Saturn is now peeking out from the dawn twilight. Rising roughly half an hour before the Sun, the ringed planet glows at magnitude 0.8 and shares western Capricornus with Mercury, now magnitude 0. By 20 minutes before sunrise, Saturn is just 3° high in the brightening sky, while Mercury is twice that, easier to spot from where it’s sitting to Saturn’s upper right.
Farther west along the ecliptic, you won’t be able to miss Venus and Mars, both in Sagittarius. Venus is the brightest object you’ll see in the sky at magnitude –4.8, just starting to fade from its greatest brilliancy earlier this month. Meanwhile, the Red Planet is fainter than all the rest, shining gently at magnitude 1.3 about 5.5° south of Venus. These two planets rise much earlier — around 4:30 A.M. local time — so you can catch them in a darker sky to also enjoy the rich background of stars and dust they’re currently traveling through.
Uranus (magnitude 5.8, in Aries) is high in the west right after dark. Finder chart. Neptune is sinking away into the sunset, following behind Jupiter.
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.
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).
Nuin – Ash Ogam letter correspondences
Color: Glass Green
Meaning: Locked into a chain of events; Feeling bound.
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.
Tides for Alsea Bay
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Th 24 High 5:37 AM 8.0 7:01 AM Rise 2:24 AM 52
~ 24 Low 1:09 PM 0.6 5:58 PM Set 11:14 AM
~ 24 High 7:48 PM 5.4
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – We have the power to do what we wish, although it may seem hard. One step at a time will get you there!
Journal Prompt – When? – When you are angry, how do you look?
~ When great changes occur in history, when great principles are involved, as a rule the majority are wrong. – Eugene V. Debs (1855-1926) US Socialist Leader
~ … the cowboys on this front bench … – Paul Keating
~ You’re happiest while you’re making the greatest contribution. – Robert Kennedy
~ I saw that all beings are fated to happiness: action is not life, but a way of wasting some force, an enervation. Morality is the weakness of the brain. – Arthur Rimbaud (1854-1891) French writer
The little birds twitter and cheep
To their loves on the leafless larch. – –John Addington Symonds, Jr. (1840–93)
Ostara Magick – Recipes
Honey Sunflower Bread – http://autumnearthsong.com/2012/03/03/ostara-recipes-2012/
*Makes 2 loaves
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup rolled oats
- ½ cup honey
- 1 TB butter
- 2 tsps salt
- 1 cup roasted sunflower kernels
- 1 (1/4oz) package active dry yeast
- ½ cup warm water
- 2 ½ cups whole-wheat flour
- 2 cups white flour
Bring the water to a boil and and stir in the oats. Set aside for 1 hour. Spray two 9 x 5 x 3 inch loaf pans with vegetable oil spray.
Add the honey, butter, salt and sunflower seeds to oat mixture and stir well.
Dissolve the yeast in the warm water and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Stir the yeast mixture into the oat mixture. Blend in both flours, stirring until the dough pulls cleanly away from the sides of the bowl. Form the dough into a ball and place in a greased bowl, turning to coat. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled in size. Punch down the dough. Knead until smooth and elastic. Divide into two loaves and place in the prepared pans. Cover and let rise again until doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 350*. Bake until golden brown, about 45-50 mins. It if appears that breat is browning too quickly, cover with foil the last 10-15 mins of baking time. Remove bread from pans and cool on a wire rack.
*I think this would make delicious french toast too
OSTARA HOT CROSS BUNS – These cakes are traditional treats at the Vernal Equinox. The equilateral solar cross on top predates Christianity and represents the minor Sabbats; the solstices and the equinoxes.
4 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 pkg. yeast
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/3 tsp. allspice
2 cups warm milk
1/4 cup melted butter
1 cup currants
1/2 cup candied peel
1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar
2 tbs. milk
- Proof yeast in sweetened milk.
- Preheat oven to 375o
- Mix dry ingredients, cut in butter, then eggs, then milk.
- Stir in currants and candied peel.
- Cover and let stand for 10 minutes.
- Spray 24 medium/large muffin cups, fill 2/3 full.
- Spray tops with butter spray, cover and let rise until almost double, about 20-30 minutes.
- Bake for about 20 minutes, until browned.
- Cool on rack until warm.
- Combine sugar and milk until smooth, spoon into piping bag.
- Pipe Celtic crosses on top.
Lemon Surprise Bread http://everythingunderthemoon.net/forum/ostara-feast-recipes-t22403.html
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 5 minutesIngredients:
•1 package Lemon Poppy Seed Bread mix
•Ingredients to prepare mix as directed
•1/2 C golden raisins
•1 Tbsp orange zest
•1/2 C dried cranberries
•Non-meltable goodies to add into the bread, such as:
•A shiny coin
•A piece of gold or silver jewelry
•A polished crystal (make it large enough to find! )
•Vanilla ice cream
Prepare the bread mix as directed. Once it’s all mixed together, add in the golden raisins, the orange zest, and the cranberries. Finally, fold in a few small treasures, such as a ring, a cleaned coin, or a polished crystal. Be sure you select items that won’t melt when you bake it in the oven!
Bake as directed on the package, and then remove from oven. Allow to cool. To serve, slice off pieces, keeping an eye out for the hidden treasures. Top each slice off with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Silliness – Putin