Tag Archive | Ritual

Imbolc – The Season of Spring!

 

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(our deck to the back gardens – a good foot of snow has already melted from last weekend)

With the harsh weather that the East Coast was dealt last weekend, much of my excitement for warmer weather went right down the tubes.  I wish I understood why Winter makes me sad enough to want to hide from the world.  But, I have hope!  This Winter has not been bad at all, compared to other years.  The last couple years we were dealt with ridiculous polar vortexes coming from the Artic. But the El Nino phenomena we are experiencing this year, I am grateful for the above normal temperatures so far, even with the blizzard.

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(Plants are still growing in the winter at Mabon House)

I have been diving knee deep into my sweet friend’s Jacqui’s video blogs on her Green Witch Herb School Series.  And as I am typing this, I am watching her Imbolc videos and then it dawned on me…

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IMBOLC IS NEXT WEEK!!!!!!!!!!!  OH MY GOD!  Samhain is coming to a close.  And one of my two favorite seasons is about to hit!

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So, if you are reading my blog for the first time, I will explain what I am talking about.

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Imbolc (pronounced IMM-MOLCK), or in Christianized meaning, Candlemas.  It is the Celtic season of Springtime.  The time where our beautiful Earth’s alarm clock starts going off, and when many of our little animals begin to be born (such as goats, sheep, deer, bunnies, etc).  And like many of us, we tend to hit the snooze.  And that’s what she will be doing.  February 1st, St Bridget’s feast day, or the Goddess Brighid’s feast day, is coming up next week.  It is the time where we begin our planning for the seasons of life.

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For me, it really is the beginning of my year.  Many men and woman celebrate the Celtic New Year on Samhain, which is October 31st.  And in a way, I agree.  Yule, or Christmas, is the first holiday of the Celtic new year, which is the welcoming back of the Sun.  And now, we are approaching Imbolc, which allows the early buds of Spring to awaken.  Crocuses, Snow Drops, Tulips, Daffodils, Hyacinths, and other early Spring flowers, will begin to crack open their bulbs and slowly and surely reach out to the light of the sun.  Right now, my beloved bulbs are under a foot and a half of snow.  So, it can be difficult to celebrate the upcoming Spring with all that white on the ground!  But, never fear, Spring WILL come!  That’s the beauty of our world.  Spring always follows Winter.  And for me, Winter is almost over.

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I am sitting here at home today, because we were running out of oil and needed to wait for the oil guy to come today.  I am watching the Green Witch Herb School as I said above, and she is teaching people how to make your own besom with witch’s (scotch) broom flowers, raffia and a piece of driftwood.  I think it is important to craft things that you can hang or show in your own home, because it really empowers the energy of the house as YOUR home.  In this case, I love besoms.  I have brooms in almost every room, and there are brooms at every doorway.  In old folklore, a broom at every door is meant to protect each and every entrance into your home.  At our Lughnasadh celebration in 2014, I had all my Circle ladies make their own broom.  It was so much fun and I look forward to doing more with my ladies this upcoming year.  Sadly, I had to make a difficult decision over the weekend regarding relationships in my life.  I know I made the right decision, but it doesn’t make it any easier.  All in the journey, I guess.  And knowing that I no longer have anything in front of me that would be keeping me from moving on in my journey, it’s almost kind of perfect that Imbolc should be the next holiday.  It’s about new beginnings.  New journeys.  New paths.

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I am currently burning sage in my family room, and the house smells AMAZING.  It’s a shame it’s so cold out, as I love to open the doors and let the fresh air in.  Hopefully this will be a different story come next month.

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Today, since I am home, I will be preparing some of my seeds to be planted in my containers.  Wait?  Isn’t it the end of January?  Yup!  But, now that I have more room, as well as areas where I CAN sprout and seed my fruits and vegetables, I want to give them a head start so they will be super strong by the time they go in end of March, beginning of April.  Baby steps…

I give myself 10 years to make this whole.  To create a self-sustaining homestead based on permaculture principals.  I want to be able to video all of my journey, but I feel especially right now, my sad emotions from the cold weather are keeping me from doing so.  I hope, like I said above, that will change come next month.

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What are YOU doing to plan for Spring?

Ideas for Celebrating Imbolc:

  • Make a St. Bridget’s Cross
  • Create your Garden Planner
  • Light lots of white and red candles
  • Make or decorate a broom
  • Have a gathering of friends to plan your spring and summer
  • Create a sacred space for ritual and meditation
  • Burn sage and smudge your house for the upcoming season

 

 

Daily Rituals…

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So, for the last couple months I have been following a nightly ritual that I can say I have 95% been keeping up with. Around 8:15-8:30pm, I disconnect from Facebook, kiss my boys and Scott, and head back to our bedroom. Around the time this nightly ritual began, Scott and I made a conscious decision to stop fighting with ourselves and each other on the future, and just allow ourselves to enjoy the present moments. As far as we are concerned, our boys are happier and quite honestly, more behaved and relaxed since making these decisions. There is no question we don’t want to continue living the apartment life forever, but we found most of our arguments and frustrations were usually over house hunting and not having enough room. Then one day I looked around our home and so saw much dead space. I wanted to change things around, and saw we had plenty of room; we just weren’t using it correctly. Call it laziness, call it exhaustion from a long day’s work, sometimes we just want to come home and do absolutely NOTHING. And sometimes, when nothing escalates day after day, that nothing sure in fact turns into A LOT of something!

I love my nightly ritual. Once I get back into our bedroom, allowing the 3 outside to watch their wrestling on TV, I take to my Tret Fure Pandora station, a cup of tea, a magazine or my phone to keep up with my favorite blogs. By 9pm the boys are in bed, and Scott is either cleaning up or finishing up out in the living room.

Last night I was reading one of my favorite blogs called Hey Mishka, and she had a great story about morning rituals. So, it got me thinking: how many out there have these daily routines? Is it just morning or evening? Or a combination of both? In reading her blog, one woman was talking about taking her time waking up, having her cup of morning coffee, yoga, etc…which yeah, I get it, it’s nice and all, but in order for me to do yoga in the AM, I would have to get up at 4:30AM each day. Sorry, that’s not happening. My days currently are extremely long enough, and trying to concentrate on being quiet is something of a rarity, so it’s not happening during the week, at least. With two boys who each have a different approach to “waking up”, eating breakfast and getting ready in the morning, it is next to impossible to live that fairy tale of doing some walking meditation while my coffee is brewing, then off to do a 30 minute to 1 hour session of yoga. So, until I have room, time and the mental capacity to do a morning ritual, my nightly one is going to have to do.

So, what are your rituals?