The shop is closed Tue/Wed. Winter hours are 1-6pm Thurs.-Mon. Featured photo by Ken Gagne.
[posting at 6pm] Rain gauge at noon on 3/7 – Dry. It’s been lovely, sunny and warm today, but the temp is dropping fast, now that the sun is down. 46F, wind at 1-6mph and gusting, AQI 4-39, UV2. Chance of rain 24% today and 65% tonight. Today (49/42) should stay cloudy, but we’re not likely to see any showers until after dark and they should stop Wed. morning (50-32)and it will clear enough to make the night really chilly! Thur/Fri (52/38) will be partly cloudy, but Sat (53/45) we’re looking at rain (accum 1/2 inch) and wind (into the 30’s!) Sun. (51/46) ought to be just showery, but Mon, (52/47) the rain/wind will be back, with most of an inch and wind in the 20’s. Tue/Wed (50/43) we’re looking at rain and showers again. 0 firespots.
Yesterday when we got home, much later than usual, I got the cooking part of the mushroom catsup going with shallots and spices. Tempus made home fries in the air fryer and we had those with cheese and pickled beets, then turned in. We got up right around 1 and I read for awhile, until he headed out, so’s not to get underfoot, then I worked on the catsup for a bit until I could bottle it up.
I opened the box of the display kits that I had gotten from Michaels last summer, finally, and I have the first one in my tote basket, so I can work on it. We’re going to tuck the rest into the back of the closet, so they’re not scattered all over and gathering dust.
I started playing with my new tablet, but didn’t have any of the right passwords, so I brought it to the shop to get that taken care of. It runs on WiFi, though, and apparently the WiFi at the park is down, for some reason. Well, I started learning how to use it, anyway.
I went to sleep a bit later than usual, nearly 5:30, and Tempus got in around 9am, so we both went a little short on sleep. When we got up, I worked in the garden for a bit, put in a few trailing nasturtium seeds and got some pictures, along with planting that shoot from the dahlia in the parsley pot (both parsleys bought it in the cold.) and doing some weeding.
The sunshine was amazing, with just enough white puffs for decoration. The geese were around the pond east of Eckman, a heron and some ducks in the outflow there, and a whacking lot of ducks, mostly mallards, a few harlequins and a scoter in the Lint Slough outflow. It was so warm that I pulled off my poncho and I actually forgot it in the car!
I spent most of the day writing and checked in another stack of books, including some gay literature, some witchy books and a copy of the Chalice and the Blade, an interesting take on religious history from a feminist perspective.
We had a bunch of shoppers in. We’re trying to get various pieces put away from the re-set still, and people keep getting into them. One of the shoppers was one of those curious almost-teens that can wreak real havoc. He ended up in my plants, found a silk rose from one of my bouquets that *should* be out of reach, and pulled out a rub-on that I had in one of the rollies for boxes! …among other things. Well, curious kitties… I didn’t have the oomph to deal with him. …and I know where he gets it because his mother and grandmother got into one of the project boxes of the House Capuchin stuff and insisted on buying a couple of spurtles! Urf.
I haven’t gotten back to the mushroom catsup today, forgot it at home, actually, but that still needs to be strained and then run in the dehydrator so *that’s* going to have to go home with us. I’m hoping I’m going to get enough time at the shop after this goes out to get my tablet online, so I can play with it some more….
Today is our “sleep-in” day, and depending on how things go I might not come in to do the newsletter tonight, so Thursday would be the next one. I’ll double a few things here, just in case. I have a lot to do at home, from some mending and a bit of sewing, to dishes, to baking the pumpkins, so I can put the pulp away, to getting something cooked for the next week, to harvesting some of the spring greens to freeze until the next time I do a soup. I think I may have a couple of broths to get put by as well.
Today’s Plant is Nodding Onion, Allium cernuum. This is sometimes called Lady’s Leek. It’s an edible plant in the Allium family, but not particularly choice. (Yeah, personal experience…) It’s called “Nodding” because the inflorescences, the “flower”, tend to droop, unlike a lot of the alliums that end up with a ball on a stick. Most of the plants in this family are edible, but be careful! There are a few that are either disgusting or at least mildly poisonous and there are bulbs that *are* poisonous that are easy to mistake. Onions have been very important as a food/nutrition source for a long while and have even been worshiped at times. These are grown as ornamentals, mostly, but are found wild here on the coast. More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allium_cernuum and on Alliums here:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allium – Masculine, Mars, Fire, Isis – Cut and dry the flowers and add to a grapevine or rosemary wreath for a house protection spell. These are great for house blessings. Grown in pots indoors or in the garden they protect against evil and particularly against poisonous snakes. When you harvest in the fall, make a decorative braid of onions and hang over bedroom doors to prevent infections. Nodding onions are great for this purpose because, not being particularly great as food, you won’t mind replanting them in the spring as they start to sprout! Purify swords and athames after particularly heavy magicks, by rubbing the blade with a cut bulb, then wash with clear water and oil with rosemary-infused almond oil. Place the dried flowers in a vase at the head of the bed, or pack into a pillow sachet to help clarify prophetic dreams.
There is an epic poem that is 1010 years old today. The Shahnameh “The Book of Kings”) is a long epic poem written by the Persian poet Ferdowsi between c. 977 and 1010 CE and is the national epic of the Iranian cultural continent. Consisting of some 60,000 verses, the Shahnameh tells mainly the mythical and to some extent the historical past of (Greater) Iran from the creation of the world until the Islamic conquest of Persia in the 7th century. More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shahnameh and on the poet here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ferdowsi
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 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 3/18 at 12:18am. Waxing Crescent phase – Keywords for the Crescent phase are: expansion, growth, struggle, opportunity. It is the time in a cycle that you gather the wisdom learned in the new phase and communicate your intention to move forward. Light a candle. Write or read an affirmation. LISTEN & ABSORB. Commit to your goal. God/dess aspect: Maiden/Youth, energy and enthusiasm – Associated God/dess: Artemis & Apollo, Mayet/Djehuti, Freya/Frey. Phase ends at the Quarter on 3/10 at 2:45am.
The nearly first-quarter Moon shines between Aldebaran to its left and the dipper-shaped Pleiades closer to its right, as shown above.
As spring approaches, the Big Dipper climbs as high in the northeast soon after dark as Cassiopeia has descended to in the northwest. Midway between them, as always, is Polaris.
Mercury has remained visible in the early morning sky so far this month, but it will soon be disappearing, headed for superior conjunction in April. When that happens, the planet will sit directly behind the Sun from our point of view, rendering it invisible. For now, you can still just spot Mercury just before dawn if you have a clear view of your eastern horizon. Twenty minutes before sunrise this morning, the solar system’s speediest planet is just 3° high in the east. It’s moved into Aquarius, which currently also houses the Sun. Glowing a relatively bright magnitude –0.2, Mercury outshines its near neighbor Saturn, which is higher up (7.5°) and now just under 8° to its upper right (west). Venus and Mars are now both in western Capricornus, both roughly 20° high by this time.
Uranus (magnitude 5.8, in Aries) is in the west right after dark.
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
Tu 8 High 3:44 AM 7.5 6:41 AM Rise 9:34 AM 25
~ 8 Low 10:40 AM 1.1 6:13 PM
~ 8 High 4:53 PM 5.6
~ 8 Low 10:13 PM 3.1
W 9 High 4:23 AM 7.2 6:39 AM Set 1:04 AM 34
~ 9 Low 11:38 AM 1.2 6:15 PM Rise 10:05 AM
~ 9 High 6:05 PM 5.3
~ 9 Low 11:00 PM 3.6
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.
Journal Prompt – What if? – What would you do if the surprise party was for you but you weren’t surprised?
~ You can decide within yourself how circumstances will affect you. Between what happens to you, or the stimulus, and your response to it is your freedom or power to choose that response. – Principles of Personal Vision
~ Good luck is another name for tenacity of purpose. – Ralph Waldo Emerson
~ Men often become what they believe themselves to be. If I believe I cannot do something, it makes me incapable of doing it. But when I believe I can, then I acquire the ability to do it even if I didn’t have it in the beginning. – Mahatma Gandhi
~ A newspaper is a device for making the ignorant more ignorant and the crazy crazier. – H. L. Mencken (1880-1956) US writer
Sunshine trying hard awhile
On the bare brown fields to smile;
Frozen ruts and slippery walks;
Gray old crops of last year’s stalks. – Christopher Pearse Cranch (1813–90)
Ostara Magick – Recipes – Complicated ones this time. They’ll be easier, next!
Tarragon Scented Asparagus Vichyssoise From: herbalmuse – Delicious Living Magazine — The sweet aroma of tarragon complements the taste of fresh spring asparagus exceptionally well in this light, refreshing soup.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
1 1/2 pounds asparagus
1 large leek, chopped
2 cloves garlic, sliced
1/2 pound red potatoes, peeled and diced
6 cups light vegetable stock or water
3 tablespoons fresh tarragon, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1. Rinse the asparagus. Gently bend each spear just above the woody bottom section to break off. Discard bottom. Chop the asparagus into 1-inch pieces. Set aside 18 tips to use as a garnish.
2. In a large saucepan, combine asparagus and remaining ingredients except 2 tablespoons of the tarragon. Cover and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat slightly and continue to cook until the potatoes and asparagus are very tender, about 18 minutes. Remove the soup from the heat and remove the lid so that the asparagus doesn’t discolor during cooling.
3. When cool, strain the soup, reserving the liquid. Purée the vegetable mixture in a food processor or blender until very smooth. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, then whisk in the reserved cooking liquid. Stir the remaining tarragon into the soup. Chill thoroughly, then taste and adjust the seasonings. Serve chilled and garnished with the remaining asparagus spears.
Maple Glazed Salmon – http://autumnearthsong.com/2012/03/03/ostara-recipes-2012/
- 1/4 cup maple syrup (even better if you use REAL maple syrup )
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 pound salmon
- In a small bowl, mix the maple syrup, soy sauce, garlic, garlic salt, and pepper.
- Place salmon in a shallow glass baking dish, and coat with the maple syrup mixture. Cover the dish, and marinate salmon in the refrigerator 30 minutes, turning once.
- Preheat oven to 400* Place the baking dish in the preheated oven, and bake salmon uncovered 20 minutes, or until easily flaked with a fork.
Herbal Roast Goose – http://greenhaventradition.weebly.com/ostara-recipes.html This was originally published in The Wordsmith’s Forge on 1/22/09, then revised for reprint 6/24/11.
1 whole goose, about 8-9 lbs.
2 small sweet onions
1 bay leaf
For the marinade:
1 cube frozen grated ginger (thawed)
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon mace
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
For the herbal rub:
8 juniper berries
1/2 teaspoon green peppercorns
1 teaspoon rubbed sage
1/2 teaspoon rosemary
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/4 teaspoon Australian pink salt
- For the marinade, combine in a small dish: 1 cube frozen grated ginger (thawed), 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper, 1/4 teaspoon mace, 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt, and 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar. Set aside briefly.
- Unwrap the goose. Remove giblets, reserving for gravy or stock. Pull off any big hunks of fat and save those for cooking. The big flap of skin from the neck can also be cut off and put with the stock fixings. Use kitchen shears to cut off the first two wing joints and save those for stock.
- Rinse the goose inside and out; pat dry. Prick the skin all over using a knife or fork, so that the fat can escape.
- Use a pastry brush to spread the marinade all over the goose. Wrap the goose in plastic or put it in a big dish, and leave it in the refrigerator for at least half an hour.
- Preheat oven to 425ºF.
- Peel and quarter two small sweet onions; set aside briefly.
- Take out the goose and rinse it briefly to get the vinegar off; don’t obsess over getting every bit of spice off.
- In a mortar and pestle, put 8 juniper berries and 1/2 teaspoon green peppercorns. Grind those. Then add 1 teaspoon rubbed sage, 1/2 teaspoon rosemary, 1/2 teaspoon thyme, and 1/4 teaspoon Australian pink salt. Grind again, then stir to blend thoroughly. Rub this mixture all over the outside of the goose, and save a little to put inside the body cavity as well.
- Stuff the onion quarters and a bay leaf into the body cavity of the goose. Close the skin flaps over the opening and secure with a toothpick or skewer. If the skin has a loop for the leg bones, poke the ends through that loop to secure the legs. Otherwise, tie the leg ends together with cotton cooking string.
- Carefully lower the prepared goose onto the roasting rack, in the pan or the roasting oven. Cook for 30 minutes at 425ºF.
- Reduce heat to 350ºF. Very carefully lift lid of roaster oven, tilting it away from you; or open oven and pull the pan out. Spoon or suction away the liquid fat in the bottom of the pan, reserving it for another use. Cover the roaster oven or return the goose to the regular oven. Cook the goose for a total of 15 minutes per pound (so 2 1/2 hours for 8 lbs). Remove fat every 30-60 minutes.
- When done, skin should be crisp golden brown and juices should run clear. (It’s okay if the meat is still pink in places.) Temperature in the thickest part of the meat should be 160ºF. Carefully transfer goose to a serving platter. Cover with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 15 minutes before carving.
- To carve the goose, first slice off the wings. (Lay the wings on the platter and save them for stock; they’re really tough. The onions aren’t meant to be eaten, but if they’re cooked through and people want them, then you can dig those out.) Next, slice off the legs and serve those. Finally, slice the breast meat and serve it. There will be a few other slivers you can pick off the carcass, if desired. If you save the carcass and other bones with any loose skin, you can get a second batch of stock from one goose!
- Goose is a wonderful luxury food. It’s all dark meat, and in America geese are not factory farmed but are kept as free-range livestock. The meat is chewier and richer than chicken, though similar to duck or turkey. There is a great deal of fat on a goose, which is highly valued for cooking potatoes or other foods, so save the fat. Skin, bones, and other scraps can be used for making stock. Giblets are good alone, or as gravy, or for stock.
- All of the herbs for this recipe are “digestive” herbs. They aid digestion by helping the body break down fat and protein. If you have sprigs of fresh herbs, especially the rosemary or thyme, you can stuff a few into the body cavity too.
- Frozen grated ginger is an oddity I often have on hand. Whenever we get fresh ginger root for a recipe, I grate all of it in a spice grinder and measure off the necessary amount. All the leftover ginger pulp gets packed into an ice cube tray and frozen, then the cubes go in a baggie until I need them. They’re less hot than fresh ginger root, so if you use fresh, you only need maybe a quarter or a half teaspoon.
- Fancy salts can add a lot to a recipe. If you don’t have the Australian pink salt, which has a delicate mineral edge, you can use all sea salt. If you don’t have sea salt, plain table salt is okay.
- Green peppercorns have a more leafy flavor than black peppercorns, so they blend nicely with herbs. If you don’t have green peppercorns, use black ones.
- If you’re worried about over-browning the goose, you can cover it with a tent of aluminum foil at the beginning or end of cooking.
- This recipe was originally created for an Ostara Feast, early in spring, because ducks, geese, and chickens are associated with that holiday. Goose is also served at New Year, Midwinter/Christmas, and Michaelmas (Sept. 29). The side dishes help dress it up for each occasion — salads and eggs in spring, squash and root vegetables in winter, or apples and stuffing in autumn.
This recipe was originally published in The Wordsmith’s Forge on 3/20/10, then revised for reprint 6/24/11.
Silliness – Sniglet – Any word which should be in the dictionary but isn’t. – upuls (YU puls) – n. The blank pages at the beginning and end of books, presumably placed there so you can rewrite the ending .