Posted in Earth, Ecology, Gaia, Gardens, Ireland, Permaculture, Trees

Letter From Christine…

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I often receive letters and emails from those who have visited Bealtaine Cottage and Gardens.

DSC02042I treasure them as the words therein inspire me to keep on this busy path of sharing Bealtaine and caring for the Earth.

DSC02041This evening I have taken more photographs to share with you, as I share the words penned by Christine, who visited Bealtaine some days ago.

DSC02040Thank you dear Colette for the wonderful time with you in Bealtaine Cottage yesterday.

DSC02039We felt so nourished and inspired, your inspirational company, wise words and delightful home so full of beauty, vitality, and a healing presence. 
DSC02038Almost like a dream for me waking this morning and feeling – wow – I was actually sitting with you yesterday in your garden, stroking Jack, enjoying our conversation, my eyes feasting on the plants, flowers and trees, the sounds of the light rain, the chimes, the birds and your soothing voice…a real treat. (Of course eating your gorgeous vegan brownies too).
DSC02037We all feel very grateful to you.

DSC02036It’s a total inspiration having you create and share Bealtaine Cottage and being not far from us here, a ‘wake-up’ and an eye opener! 

DSC02035 We each felt so comfortable, at ease and at home…of course many questions bubble this morn inspired from our visit. 
DSC02034And also some grief…some of what you shared about deep sadness for how we are living as a civilisation, how we have lived with such lack of respect for the earth, the animals and plant kingdoms and also each other.

DSC02033Such disconnection…and some of that being reflected in the challenges we have to face…
DSC02032We went up to the Queen Maeve Cairn at Knocknarea after leaving you…such breathtaking views…

DSC02031I felt very grateful and blessed for good souls like yourself, living from the heart, soulfully, passionately, the warrior energy to follow one’s own heart-calling and live it, a real warrior path…takes courage tuning into one’s own heart, not that of the tribe or the need to be accepted and fit-in.
DSC02030So thanks again dear Colette. Much love to you, to Jack and Sammy Bear and of course your beautiful space and it’s healing spirit. 
Christine x (Nick and Raphael xx)” 

DSC02026On this night of the first new moon of Lughnasadh, I am content to be compared to a warrior.

DSC02025For, in so many ways, my journey to this point has been a battle at times…not with Mother Earth, but over the twelve past years, on my own, when I have had to motivate myself to stay with the project.

DSC02024There have been times along the way, when I have felt nurtured by others, the kindness of strangers on the internet who have supported me when I have needed it most.

DSC02023Serendipity has played a huge part in the Bealtaine Project!

You know who you are…and my blessings are many and often as I think of you!

DSC02022This year has witnessed a beautiful maturity in all I have planted and continue to love. I, in turn, feel nurtured by Mother Earth… There is a lot still to be done as we move into uncertain times. 

DSC02021There are important messages to share that empower us to act in support of Mother Earth, such as I share on my Twitter and FaceBook accounts…

DSC02020Digging Mother Earth releases into the atmosphere…and why I don’t dig! DSC02018Likewise… absorb from the air, through the small holes (stomata) present on the lower side of

DSC02016We are putting out double the amount of that can be absorbed by plants on Earth…Plant more!

DSC02015Carbon is a gaseous food absorbed by plants…so let’s plant more!

DSC02014Social Media is a powerful tool and can be used for great good in getting simple messages like these out there!

DSC02013 And, like all old warriors, I’ll just keep on keeping on!

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Bealtaine Cottage Good Life membership is 12 euros per year and allows me a small income to continue to grow the Bealtaine Project both here in Ireland and in the hearts and minds of good people all over the world.

Please join…

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Posted in Bloom, cottage style, Country Living, Garden, Ireland, Organic Garden

Cottage Garden Style

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There was a full moon last night.

Sammy-Bear couldn’t make up his mind whether he wanted in or out.

Previous to this photo I had opened the back door for him twice to go out, whereupon he ran around to the front of the cottage and jumped up on the window sill, as you can see here!

DSC09962It’s always a strange time when the moon is full.

I’m sure you each have stories about weird happenings at this time!

DSC09961This May moon has cast it’s brightness over Ireland, presiding over an extraordinary time of growth.

DSC09960DSC09959 All around the cottage there are flowers opening, plants growing, seemingly overnight and trees now heavy with leaf and blossom.

DSC09958Where would an Irish cottage garden be without the beautiful and traditional Perlagonium?

DSC09957And, of course, every cottage garden has a little spot for Succulents…I plant these in terracotta pots and here in this old planter.

They love dry conditions!

DSC09956DSC09955Always lots of tasks to complete as in painting the old Buddha, so he may survive another winter!

DSC09954DSC09953DSC09952As in all cottage gardens, famous for their mish-mash of flowers, vegetables fruit and just about everything else, edibles share potager beds with their close relations!

DSC09950I have had to move many plants from pots and plant them in spaces wherever I can find them.

For, as always now at this time of the year, there is a drought…sometimes prolonged, but dry enough at the best of times!

DSC09948The nursery bed, essential to a cottage garden, is being cleared fast, with plants going into the long beds down by the road.

DSC09946DSC09943Pieris and Poppies…as always, flowers are squashed in beside the most unsuitable bed mates…the Poppy is planted in with Flowering Currant!

DSC09931And sitting in my chair on the veranda, looking up…the classic cottage garden rose.

DSC09941The all-forgiving Cottage Garden will tolerate just about everything one wants to “throw out!” Except, of course, I throw little away, favouring a good old re-purpose, as in this old, but very comfy, fireside chair!

DSC09937And…the beautiful Wisteria…tougher than it looks and essential “cottage garden!”

DSC09936DSC09933DSC09932Nothing pristine here!

No manicured lawn or well-placed fountain or garden ornament…yet everything knows how to behave itself without supervision.

DSC09930Even Jack…unlike Sammy-Bear!

DSC09927DSC09924Oh Jack, you are a little beaut!

DSC09923Opening my backdoor this morning I see the Fairies have tidied up again!

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Posted in Abundance, Celtic Mythology, Earthing, goddess, Ireland, Uncategorized

The Goddess in the Well

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Yesterday was a special day for me!

The beautiful, ethereal mountain that is Ben Bulben will give you a clue…

DSC09886I travelled to Sligo, passing along the shores of Lough Gill, to collect a very special ring, that was made for me by gifted Silversmith, Mirjam Schiller at 

https://www.facebook.com/Wildheart-290973244286031/timeline

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My daughter, Cara, was driving, so we stopped by the shores of the Lough, made famous by W.B.Yeats in his poetry.

DSC09883DSC09884Birthdays come and go and I have enjoyed sixty of them, all in the month of October, near Samhain…so this, along with a second ring as yet unfinished, marked my sixty Summers on this precious, beautiful Earth.

DSC09885DSC09888I had deliberated for some time over what I should spend my birthday money on…have always loved silver and, very importantly, dearly wanted to place a much maligned symbol of the Goddess where I would always see it! 

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The story of the snakes being banished from Ireland represents a dark place in the history of this land…for it was the Goddess who was banned, to be replaced with an image dominated by Patriarchy… that of Virgin Mother Mary.13240026_1157744440942236_3639364493354802613_nThe Great Goddess often had snakes as her symbol—sometimes twining around her sacred staff, as in ancient Crete—and they were worshiped as guardians of her mysteries of birth and regeneration.

DSC09893Bealtaine Cottage encapsulates those two energies…birth and regeneration…of Mother Earth herself, in all her wild, unstoppable beauty.

DSC09889Wildheart was the place I had to go… 

DSC09891DSC09890The journey back was auspicious, in that we got lost. 

DSC09897And so, driving along a quiet road, we were led to an ancient Holy Well…much older than any religion…

DSC09898Tobernalt Holy Well is a place of reflection and nurturing serenity. 

DSC09896It predates the advent of Christianity to Ireland in the fifth century. 

DSC09895Its importance as a meeting place and a sustainer of life predates even our Celtic ancestors.

DSC09894Tobernalt is a natural spring well that established itself in a primeval forest. 

It is situated at the South West corner of Lough Gill in the North Sligo Barony of Carbury. 

DSC09899This was where I blessed my ring, submerging it in the Spring Water that flowed from the hill, away into the mystical depths of Lough Gill and the Lake Isle of Inishfree. 

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Posted in ancient Ireland, celebrations, Earth, Ireland, Ostara, Spirituality, Uncategorized

Magical Evening of Ostara at Bealtaine Cottage

This is the evening of Ostara, the Spring Equinox…of equal day and night.

The Great Turning of the year as Spring moves with joy towards the Summer and Bealtaine, the first of May.

A magical time.

The word Ostara is just one of the names given to the celebration of the Spring Equinox, also known as the Vernal Equinox, on March 20 this year.

The March equinox marks the moment the Sun crosses the celestial equator – the imaginary line in the sky above the Earth’s equator – from south to north.

This happens on March 19, 20 or 21 every year.

The Venerable Bede said the origin of the word Ostara is actually from Eostre, a Germanic goddess of spring. 

Solstices and equinoxes mark key stages in the astronomical cycle of Mother Earth.

Each year there are two equinoxes (spring and autumn) and two solstices (summer and winter).

All Bealtaine Cottage videos are free from advertising, so you can enjoy watching…

Please consider supporting Bealtaine Cottage

 

Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, E.U., Garden, Ireland, Uncategorized

What If…?

poster tree

A reasonable question…why, some would even say, a good question!

Isn’t it about time we asked it?

Isn’t it about time we stepped out of the ridiculous matrix we have trapped ourselves in?  

Question more…

Poster Bealtaine Cottage trees

Today’s video from Bealtaine Cottage…

All Bealtaine Cottage videos are free from advertising, so you can enjoy watching…

Please consider supporting Bealtaine Cottage

Posted in Garden, Gardening, Gardens, Ireland, Uncategorized

Sunshine and Cuttings

It’s like the Mediterranean here at Bealtaine Cottage!

The sun is shining and the birds singing like it’s Spring…and it is!

This is the second month of Spring on the ancient Celtic calendar and it’s all true to form!

Those interested in the Fuchsia cuttings need to hurry and order, as they are fast coming into leaf…another couple of weeks left to get them in the ground and growing…and they will grow very fast indeed! To place your order, click on the link below…

https://bealtainecottage.com/seeds-for-sale/

 

Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, Bees, bog gardens, Cottage, First day of Spring, Garden, Ireland, Permaculture, season, Uncategorized, Woodland, woods

Signs of Spring

Catnip Heart Toy made at Bealtaine Cottage

Life is stirring.

Light shines higher in the morning sky.

Thickening buds cast a haze over the land.

“But there were certain early days in Casterbridge- days of firmamental exhaustion which followed angry south-westerly tempests-when, if the sun shone, the air was like velvet.”
Thomas Hardy

The woodland that surrounds Bealtaine Cottage

Colours emerge and birds sing out a joyous, higher note.

Warm weather in January

We are officially in the season of Spring in the West of Ireland and the new energy is tangible, from rising in the morning to the growing lateness of dusk.

The temperature seems rather unstable, as you can see evidence of in the photograph above.

The morning began very cold and in the space of minutes, the temperature had climbed by 18 F., causing the mirror on the veranda to steam up!

I recorded this as most of the only real information about climate and weather appears to be anecdotal evidence from social media! Cottage interior at Bealtaine, 2016

My favourite aspect of Spring is the way the light changes.

If one simply sat in this cottage and never ventured outdoors it would be possible to map the seasons in light play.

I expect birds, animals and even insects are similarly informed.

Living in the glare of artificial light can be dulling to our senses!

“She walks in the loveliness she made,
Between the apple-blossom and the water–
She walks among the patterned pied brocade,
Each flower her son, and every tree her daughter.”
Vita Sackville-West, The Land

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Elsewhere in the woodland gardens at Bealtaine, frogs have emerged from hibernation and busied themselves, as only frogs can in cold ponds!

Frogs in Bealtaine pond have the luxury of a shallow, sheltered, ancillary pond, hand dug by myself, just off the main one.

This water heats faster and earlier, ensuring maximum attention to the detail of frog mating and spawning…a sort of nursery pond!

Anyway, it works a treat and has done for the past eleven years.

As a consequence, the amphibian life force has healthily expanded!

“Woods were ringed with a colour so soft, so subtle that it could scarcely be said to be a colour at all. It was more the idea of a colour – as if the trees were dreaming green dreams or thinking green thoughts.”
Susanna Clarke, Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell

 

Frogspawn at Bealtaine Cottage, Ireland, 1st Feb 2016
Frogspawn at Bealtaine Cottage, Ireland, 1st Feb 2016

“It is spring again. The earth is like a child that knows poems by heart.”
Rainer Maria Rilke

Permaculture gardens at Bealtaine Cottage Feb 2016

Diversity of planting not only has created resilience, but bestowed all year round colour to Bealtaine Cottage…so appreciated as Spring emerges…for with this rising of the sap, comes a much defined colour change!

“She turned to the sunlight
And shook her yellow head,
And whispered to her neighbor:
“Winter is dead.”
A.A. Milne, When We Were Very Young

Pussy Willow at Bealtaine Cottage. Ireland

Catkins have appeared on the Willow…and there’s many different varieties in the Woodland. Pond and even Orchard gardens. Essential food for the bees emerging from a hungry winter hibernation.

“Is the spring coming?” he said. “What is it like?”…
“It is the sun shining on the rain and the rain falling on the sunshine…”
Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

Quince flowers, Bealtaine Cottage, Feb 2016

This Quince grows in the Bog Garden and has begun to flower!

“In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt.”
Margaret Atwood

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Where would Spring be without the exquisite little Primroses?

Seen here in the Fairy Wood at Bealtaine, surrounded by Spurge!

“Spring is the time of plans and projects.”
Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

Spurge at bealtaine cottage in the Fairy Wood

The Fairy Wood awakens!

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You can place an order for seeds harvested here at Bealtaine cottage, from the plants seen growing here…all strong and vigorous. Click on the link below that will take you to the selection available:

https://bealtainecottage.com/seeds-for-sale/

 

I’m happy to write, photograph, podcast, YouTube and Facebook on behalf of Mother Earth…it would be great if you could take a second or two to press the LIKE button, leave a comment, or even subscribe to Bealtaine Cottage Good Life…

https://bealtainecottage.com/bealtaine-cottage-good-life/

Posted in Climate, climate change, Ireland, Uncategorized

Country Cottage Journal~Floods

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Last night I encountered the severest rainfall ever…it was nothing less than apocalyptic!

I was awakened around midnight by the sound of gushing water.

It had been raining all day and the forecast was for the rain to persist until around 6am on Sunday morning.

Getting up and putting on my dressing gown, I opened the back door and switched on the outdoor light, to witness water rising up towards the door.

Grabbing a torch, I shone it along the back of the garden and was amazed to see waterfalls, cascading down from the hill behind the cottage, onto the gravel in my little courtyard.

It was horrendous…and very, very frightening!

I put my raincoat on over my dressing gown, slid into my wellies and clutching the torch, headed up the back garden, to see if it was possible to redirect the torrents.

I spent the next three hours with spade, hoe and rake, trying my hardest to channel the flooding away from it’s path of destruction.

I succeeded…eventually!

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This is extreme weather of biblical proportions!

The result of Climate Change due to the machinations of man…everything points that way!

Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, Celtic Mythology, holiday, Ireland, ocean, surfing, wild atlantic way

Wild Atlantic Way

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A visit to the wild Atlantic Ocean marks the day that’s in it!

The turning of another year for me, so close to the Celtic New Year, I can almost taste the wood-smoke in the air from Samhain bonfires.

The ocean is strong and volatile today, churning and heaving life, as it crashes on the stony shore of Strandhill in Sligo.

This is my birthday, the beginning of my sixth decade experience with Mother Earth.

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Visiting the Ocean is as close as I can get to her heart beat, rhythmic and strong…pounding out the pulse of life upon the shores of this most westerly habitation.

White horses ride the water as it breaks further out.

Children are on mid-term holiday from schools and line the promenade, with parents keeping watchful eye on the wild foam.

I look for a small stone upon the shore, one I can put into my pocket and hold easily in my hand as we venture home.

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I feel renewed, invigorated, and ready to leave the last decade behind me, as I embrace the first day of my future.

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Thanks to all you wonderful friends…it’s been a beautiful first day!

XXXX Colette at Bealtaine Cottage XXXX

Posted in Ireland, Permaculture Podcast

How to Access the Daily Podcast…

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The new website has been designed to be more user-friendly.

This includes a section where the Daily Podcast is located.

I will be posting each Podcast into this section, which can be easily located at the top of the Home page.

This will not be coming through to your email box, as there is no facility to do this, other than through a regular blog.

Blogs are separate pieces of work, as you know.

I hope this explains the lack of email links.

Blessings X

Colette at Bealtaine Cottage

Posted in Celts, Ireland, Samhain, writers

Between Worlds We celebrate

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As with all things Celtic, the merging of time and place meant boundaries became thin and blurred…

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Known as “The Night of the Thin Veil…a time of “between worlds”…the fertile edge when all is possible!

Bealtaine Cottage Permaculture

Today’s Podcast…

Bealtaine Cottage is free and has over 850 blogs, as well as over 3,500 photographs.

Bealtaine Cottage Good Life is a mere 12 euros per year and allows me a small income, to keep doing what I love doing most…writing about Mother Earth and photographing her.

To subscribe, a small donation of 12 euros per year, will add your name to the subscriber list.

                                                          Click on button below to join the website…

You can also support Bealtaine Cottage by purchasing seeds, harvest from flowers, vegetables and trees grown here…

There are seeds for sale, as well as hand carved Bog Oak Pendants…see the links at the top of the Home Page.

Thanks for your support!

Posted in Ecology, Ireland, Permaculture

Seed-Saving, Kindling and Butterflies

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Here’s the evening podcast from Bealtaine Cottage… Talking kindling, pizza dough and what to do in the garden…

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The Seed Site on Bealtaine Cottage has been updated today and now includes Willow.

I will be adding to the site as more and more seed becomes ready to be packaged.

Seeds and Willow   https://bealtainecottage.com/seeds-for-sale/

Podcast   https://soundcloud.com/bealtaine-cottage/seed-saving-kindling-and-butterflies

_____________

Bealtaine Cottage is free and has over 850 blogs, as well as over 3,500 photographs.

Bealtaine Cottage Good Life is a mere 12 euros per year and allows me a small income, to keep doing what I love doing most…writing about Mother Earth and photographing her.

To subscribe, a small donation of 12 euros per year, will add your name to the subscriber list.

                                                          Click on button below to join the website…

Thanks for your support!

Bealtaine Cottage YouTube is free from adverts, with over 100 videos to date.

Bealtaine Cottage Podcast is a free service.

Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, Garden, Ireland, Permaculture

The Bealtaine Cottage Podcast

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Today marks the beginning of a new venture, as Bealtaine Cottage takes to the airwaves, in the form of a Podcast.

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It’s early days and I am just getting the hang of it all..

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I hope you enjoy it.

Bealtaine Cottage Permaculture

If you have any aspects of Bealtaine Cottage you’d like me to talk about then please let me know in a comment here…

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Click on the link…it’ll take you straight there…

Posted in Art, cottage style, decorating, Doors, Interior Design, Ireland, painting

Decorating an Old Cottage

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Those of you familiar with Bealtaine Cottage online and the many hundreds who have visited will be interested to see the results of what a little paint can do in terms of brightening up a home.

Yes, I’ve been busy over recent days, stood on a step-ladder, paintbrush in one hand and paint tin in the other, alongside dusters to remove the heaps of cobwebs…eek!

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There’s a certain old world loveliness to “Duck Egg Blue,” as the paint is referred to, more often than not!

The colour is reminiscent of the eighteenth century and the novels of Jane Austen…a favourite author of mine. sitting room at Bealtaine Cottage bealtainecottage.com 005

There’s a simplicity about the soft pastel shades which bring out the best in an old cottage.

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Decorating a cottage is fairly simple too, as the walls and general layout are quite forgiving…in other words, anything goes as long as it’s a good mix of styles and time periods, for a cottage is a harbourer of both!

The wooden chest of drawers in the corner is relatively new-style, but provides a practical function of storing clothes not in seasonal use…and what better position, than by the chimney wall, where dampness is never an issue!

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It’s a fuss-free environment indeed! Decorating an old cottage works well when one projects personality and quirkiness into the general style…in my case it’s always a case of what frugality allows for, so an eclectic style is as much practical as it is creative.

A reflection of what the great William Morris once said…”Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”...that allows me free reign really!

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Cosy. Practical. Colourful. That’s what works for me.

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The colours will also be a good backdrop to Samhain and Yule decorations…as many of the pumpkins are seasoned indoors and the window ledges are needed for storage too.

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And as for the paint…well, it does go a long way…

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Bealtaine Cottage is free and has over 850 blogs, as well as over 3,500 photographs.

Bealtaine Cottage Good Life is a mere 12 euros per year and allows me a small income, to keep doing what I love doing most…writing about Mother Earth and photographing her.

To subscribe, a small donation of 12 euros per year, will add your name to the subscriber list.

                                                          Click on button below to join the website…

***************************************

Bealtaine cottage crafts 010Bog Oak Pendants are available from the Bealtaine Cottage Craft Shop.

Each pendant is hand-crafted from locally sourced Irish Bog Oak, an ancient and profoundly mysterious wood that’s been buried in the Irish peat bogs for thousands of years.

These pendants are hand carved from wood dated as 5,600 years old.

Visit:

https://bealtainecottage.com/craft-shop/

Posted in Gardens, homesteading, Ireland, Permaculture, Sustainable Living

One Million Celebration!

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Sometime today, Bealtaine Cottage will be viewed for the 999,999th time.

It will, thereafter, have reached one million views!

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Who would have ever thought that this little place, tucked away as it is in the West of Ireland, would have become such a beacon in these troubled times?

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I never imagined so many people would flock here to find inspiration and comfort, but they have and you continue.

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The journey continues here.

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Better ways of living with Mother Earth are under constant scrutiny and reflection.

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Visitors come and go, always taking away strategies and ideas to use, as well as plants and seeds.

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Basic concepts of sustainable living are explained…the shock of the “Compoost Loo” morphs into admiration for it’s sheer simplicity and hygiene.

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The miracle that Nature has performed here in such a short space of time becomes more visible with each photograph.

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The realisation that everything is possible when one embraces Mother Earth as a co-creator, rather than something to be abused and driven.

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I began writing about this journey and photographing Her magic back in 2011, as a way of trying to convince people that what we stand upon is part of us…we shape our world by how we live.

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Bealtaine Cottage has become a little centre of hope in a world where we are continually told we are a blight upon the Earth.

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We are not!

This is what we are capable of…helping Her to nurture us, as we in turn care for Her. Garden permaculture at bealtainecottage.com 163

*************

I have two websites… Bealtaine Cottage and Bealtaine Cottage Good Life.

This site, Bealtaine Cottage, is free and has over 850 blogs, as well as over 3,500 photographs.

Bealtaine Cottage Good Life costs 12 euros per year and allows me a small income, to keep doing what I love doing most…writing about Mother Earth and photographing her.

Making this small donation adds your name to the subscriber list.

You will then have access to the website and full blog as published twice each week.

This amounts to 104 publications per year, at a cost of 12 cents each!

                                                          Click on button below to join the website…

Posted in Celtic Mythology, Celts, Ireland, magic, Poetry

Good Magical Morning!

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The Stone Circle here at Bealtaine Cottage is infused with early morning light.

A wild wind blows in from the West carrying energy and a sense of renewal as it blows Hawthorn flowers in front of it.

The morning is defined by change and renewal.

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Stillness pervades the air at the back of the cottage where shelter holds sway…

Nearby a new sculpture of a Hare holds pride of place in one of the Potager beds…

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The Celts believed in the magical strength of the Hare.

The Hare belonged in essence to the Celtic goddess Eostre.

It was her most favoured animal, representing love, fertility and growth.

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In Celtic mythology the Hare was associated with the Moon, dawn and the belief in the transmigration of the soul. (I have written about this in a previous blog and can be accessed by typing Transmigration of the Soul into the search bar on this page).

Eostre was reputed to have changed into a Hare at the full Moon.

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The poet Robert Graves referred to the Hare as sacred to the White Goddess, the Earth Mother, being regarded as, and considered to be, a royal animal.

“…language of poetic myth anciently current in the Mediterranean and Northern Europe was a magical language bound up with popular religious ceremonies in honour of the Moon-goddess, or Muse, some of them dating from the Old Stone Age, and that this remains the language of true poetry…” ~ Robert Graves

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Boudicca, the Queen of the Celtic tribe of Iceni in England, was said to have released a Hare as a good omen before each battle.

The Druids were said to have been able to divine the outcome of battle by the hare’s movements.

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In some parts of Ireland hares continue to be celebrated, such as  the legendary ‘White Hare of Creggan’, a sculpture of which can be seen at the “An Creagan” Visitor Centre in County Tyrone.

Even in the local community, its white silhouette continues to adorn homes.

Posted in break, Ireland, Permaculture

Important Notice

I will be off-line for the next two weeks.

Please be patient, for I will be back as soon as I can!

It will not be possible to sign up new members to the BEALTAINE COTTAGE GOOD LIFE website during this time, or post seeds…but all will be back to normal in two weeks from today.

I wish you all blessings of peace and abundance.

Stay well, stay connected and maybe even take the time to have a look at some of the 850 blogs and 3,500 photographs on this Bealtaine Cottage website.

Blessings to you all.

XXX

Colette

Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, Ireland, New website, Permaculture

Access to Bealtaine Cottage Good Life Website

Just a note to flag this up for those of you who have subscribed to Bealtaine Cottage Good Life…

Most have responded to the invitation sent to you.

Here is a list of the remaining names.

If your name is on the list below, then simply email me with your current email address, then I can add you to the “access granted” list.

gillzkelly
tabithar…
steptoerosie…
langers69
artykate…
jnferr…
kelleybaker1…
micknew
michael.kealy…
mickkealy73…
margyc…
nancy@eden…
sevenmmm
chrisolton…
philomenafing…
prjb@…
isabella.shaikh…
patience2015
m.piper@theatre…
fredbees@…

Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, Beltane, celebrations, Celts, Ireland

As Pleiades Rose…

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A fabulous sunset on Bealtaine 2015.

A Bealtaine filled with much love and sunshine, as visitors came and went all through the day. bealtainecottage.com open gardens 018

First arrivals walked up the lane at 10am, with the last leaving at 8pm.

At Bealtaine the star cluster known as Pleiades rises in the early morning sky, just before dawn. Bealtaine Cottage interior design

The Pleiades is a cluster of seven closely placed stars, the seven sisters, in the constellation of Taurus.

Bealtaine, was always regarded as a time of “no time” when the veils between the two worlds are at their thinnest.

www.bealtaine cottage.com

This morning, as the Pleiades rose, I walked the gardens, tea in one hand, steadying myself by holding onto trees, as I gazed up into the brightening sky.

Today was a Bealtaine of great renewal as the Summer moved into the Northern hemisphere.

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I want to say a massive “Thank You!” to those who made the journey in person and especially the good people who sent beautiful wishes and messages from all over the world.

There are times when I feel totally over-whelmed by the love and support you show for this little piece of Ireland.

Today was such a time.

Bless you and thank you from the bottom of my heart XXX Colette

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You can subscribe to the new website, Bealtaine Cottage Good Life, by clicking the link at the top of this page.

Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, healing, Health, Ireland, Miracles

Miraculous Recovery

Bealtaine Cottage blue skies

Many of you are familiar with the tragedy recently encountered by Patrick and Jessica, both subscribers to Bealtaine Cottage and Bealtaine Cottage Good Life.

Bealtaine Cottage

The surge of good wishes, prayers and healing energy that was manifested by all of you, through Bealtaine Cottage, has led to a nothing short of a miracle being experienced on the other side of the Irish Sea!

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Patrick rang me this morning to tell me the wonderfully uplifting news!

I asked Patrick to email a little of what he spoke of to me, so I could share this wonderful news with you all.

These are his words…read and be inspired!

Evening at Bealtaine

“I’d like to give you and your followers an update on how my partner Jessica is doing after her tragic accident on December 1st.
Medical professionals told us then, and have repeated since, that her head injury was ; ” as bad as it gets “, that they expected her to die , and if she did live , it would be with a great deal of impairment, and quite possibly in a vegetative state.

kitchen window sill at bealtaine cottage

She has confounded their expectations !

She came home on February 3rd.

Medical staff would have expected, even now for her to be in a hospital bed and several months from discharge.

She visited the hospital last week, but as the lay member of an interview panel for a senior critical care nurse vacancy.

Doctors and nurses are now using words like ” AMAZING ! ” , and indeed ” MIRACULOUS “, to describe her recovery.

wild honeysuckle on the table at bealtaine cottage

Jess has an amazing spirit.

She had so much to live for before the accident; we were planning a new life together , we were going to relocate to Ireland….. buy a smallholding … bring her horse and our dogs …. Live the GOOD LIFE !!

porch at bealtaine cottage

To get Jess back was like a lottery win, we remembered that you wrote that we should keep our dreams ‘warm’; and it was tantalising to think that maybe , just maybe ???

Well we did more than maybe.

We’ve gone ahead with the purchase of a smallholding at Hawksford Co. Roscommon!

Oak seedlings growing at Bealtaine

We came over to Hawksford on April 13th and Jess saw our new home.

For the first time since the accident Jess was ‘alive’ , animated and herself.

You could visibly see recovery taking place!!!

We had to return to the U.K. after 3 days as Jess had medical appointments, BUT she left reluctantly!

Bealtaine Cottage on Midsummer morning

We will have to use our new home as a holiday place until Jess’s recovery is complete, but then we hope to live there permanently and live OUR DREAM.

Bealtaine Cottage sign

Thank you again for your, and your followers positive energy, love and support …. it really helped !!!

We hope to visit you soon at Bealtaine ; especially as we’re almost neighbours,

Patrick and Jessica xxx .”

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I think I can safely add that we all wish you blessings, love and continued health XXX

Colette and all well-wishers and friends of Bealtaine Cottage XXX

Posted in celtic festivals, Gardens, Ireland, Permaculture

You Are Invited…

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Bealtaine celebration is almost here!

This is the biggest event in the Bealtaine Cottage diary and this year is the eleventh celebration of Summer in the permaculture gardens!

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As part of the anniversary celebration, Bealtaine Cottage and gardens will be open all day on Friday the 1st of May, Bealtaine!

And open to all well-wishers who want to celebrate Bealtaine with Colette on this most magical of places in the West of Ireland.

Sedge in flower today at Bealtaine
Sedge in flower today at Bealtaine

There will be food, drink and a festival ambience for all friends of Bealtaine Cottage, free of charge.

This is an All-Day Event…come at whatever time suits you during daylight!

Near the veranda at Bealtaine Cottage
Near the veranda at Bealtaine Cottage

Directions…

From Ballyfarnon in County Roscommon, travel on the R284 to Keadue for approx 4km.
In Keadue turn right at the top of Village, signposted Leitrim Village.
Travel for approx 2km and take right (L5036) and house is third on the left.

From Carrick on Shannon in County Leitrim, travel on the R284 to Leitrim Village, approx 5km.
In Leitrim Village go over bridge and take left road signposted Keadue.
Travel for approx 6km and take left (L5036) and house is third on the left.

Distance from:

Keadue 2km
Boyle 12km
Carrick on Shannon 11km
Sligo 35km
Dublin 160km

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Bealtaine Cottage website is free, with over 850 blogs and 3,500+ photographs.

However there is a new website for lovers of all things Bealtaine…

Please support Bealtaine Cottage Good Life, by subscribing.

 Bealtaine Cottage Good Life

A new website…

To subscribe, a small donation of 12 euros per year, will add your name to the subscriber list.

You will then receive the full blog as published twice each week.

This amounts to 104 publications per year, at a cost of 12 cents each!

Click on button below to make your subscription.

Thanks for your loyal support, encouragement and good wishes.

Posted in Gardens, Growing Food, Ireland, Permaculture, Sustainable Living

Thrive

April 2011 Bealtaine Cottage permaculture gardens

Seedlings are thriving in the tunnel.

Spring is in full bloom and life is thriving at Bealtaine Cottage.

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There is a certain joy in the air that is spiralling outwards and upwards capturing the energy of all life.

April 2011 Earth Day at bealtaine cottage permaculture gardens

Primulas and Lady’s Mantle show off their form and colour, jostling for attention as the sun rises higher and higher in the clear blue skies above this little cottage.

Bealtaine Cottage

I love archways like this in the gardens, for there is something deeply spiritual and connective about the shape of them, joining one side of a path to another…connecting, as we’re all connected!

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Green, deep shades of green symbolising life at it’s most potent and powerful.

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Healing colour that pulses energy through the eye and deep into the human mind creating calm and joy.

April  Bealtaine Cottage Polytunnel

As Mother Earth thrives, so do we.

Bealtaine Cottage Gardens  in April 2011 001

The connection is so very simple to make.

We need little education to understand this most elemental of connectors we share with her.

The Fairy Wood at Bealtaine Cottage

We need Nature to thrive.

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There is much to be said for the “Green Economy”, including the aspects of personal health and well-being we acquire through allowing Nature and ourselves to thrive.

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If you want to thrive, go to Mother Nature.

Pond in the Bog Garden at  Bealtaine Cottage

If you want children to thrive, place them in Nature.

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The sounds, sights, scents of Mother Earth are all around us.

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The eminent Archaeologist, Marija Gimbutas, describes the power of Nature so well… “Her power was in water and stone, in tomb and cave, in animals and birds, snakes and fish, hills, trees and flowers. hence the holistic and mythopoeic perception of the sacredness and mystery of all there is on Earth.”

It’s time to go to her and begin to thrive.

_______________________________________________________

Bealtaine Cottage website is free, with over 1,000 blogs and 4,500+ photographs.

However there is a new website for lovers of all things Bealtaine…

News on Bealtaine Cottage Good Life: A new post published on Bealtaine Cottage Good Life…LEGACY. 19/APRIL

Please support Bealtaine Cottage Good Life, by subscribing.

 Bealtaine Cottage Good Life

A new website…

To subscribe, a small donation of 12 euros per year, will add your name to the subscriber list and give you full viewing of the new website!

Click on button below to make your subscription.

Thanks for your loyal support, encouragement and good wishes.
Blessings XXX

Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, Garden, Ireland, new blog, Permaculture

Rising to Venus

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It happens like this most years.

The West of Ireland explodes into Spring!

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Temperatures rise fast, days appear endless and birds sing in praise of the welcome season, for Winter, with all it’s darkness is finally put to bed under a carpet of falling Beech leaves, pushing off last seasons growth as new buds thicken. bealtainecottage.com 003

But what’s happening at Bealtaine Cottage…the kitchen’s a mess?

To read more of this blog, as well as view 25 more photographs, please subscribe to the new website,

Bealtaine Cottage Good Life,

bealtainecottage.org

To subscribe to this blog, a small donation of 12 euros, will add your name to the subscriber list. You will then receive the full blog as published twice each week. This amounts to 104 per year at a cost of 12 cents each!

Click on button below to make your subscription. (The first three extended blogs are already on the site!)

Posted in cottage life, Good Life, Ireland, Permaculture, sustainability

Bealtaine Cottage Good Life

Bealtaine Cottage is also on YouTube…with over 110 videos about Permaculture, planting, growing and living.

A Misty Morning

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The morning started misty, very still, with echoes of Autumn.

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Walking Jack around the gardens was quite meditative, as clarity was limited to about twenty metres or so…

 

Posted in Earth, Ecology, environment, Gardens, Inspiration, Ireland, Landscape, Permaculture

The Dominant Motive

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Why should we all labour to enrich the banks?

It is when profit becomes the dominant motive that the cycle of disaster begins.

~John Seymour

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This month, March 2015, saw one of the biggest and certainly the most expensive building in Europe to be opened, amid a flurry of protests.

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It had cost over 1.3 Billion Euros to construct in a time of imposed austerity.

This monstrosity was the new headquarters of the ECB-European Central Bank based in Frankfurt in Germany!

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This has come in the midst of some of the most severe austerity ever imposed on the people of Europe post WW2.  

There is little more to say…it speaks for itself!

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Mother Earth is blissfully unaware of man-made austerity…she just keeps growing and giving for those who tend her with love and care.

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Hope for the future abounds!

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Mother Nature, left unfettered, knows no austerity!

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The abundance of the Earth is pushing through at a fast rate here at bealtaine Cottage and this is because  the earth here is treated as sacred, nurtured and fed.

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On the same subject, I read this piece by George Monbiot recently… 

“We’re treating soil like dirt.  It’s a fatal mistake, because all human life depends on it.” ~George Monbiot  

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This is so important if we are to avoid hunger in generations to come…we must give back to the Earth, for she gives unrelentingly to us all.

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On a related subject, I was thinking about the mantra I live by…”Don’t throw it away, there is no away!”

 It’s time to introduce a deposit scheme on every take-away piece of packaging!

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Make it worthwhile for rubbish to be collected and returned!

 If every plastic bottle, cup, bag,etc had a deposit attached to it, there would be no rubbish on roadsides in Ireland!

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It is clear that the present economic model works by imposing its waste products on the environment!

This has got to change if there is to be any sort of decent future for our children and grandchildren!

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On that note, time for a large pot of tea and a chat with Sammy-Bear!

I have spent the morning updating the Seeds for Sale page…here’s a link to the Permaculture Seeds Treasure Trove…

https://bealtainecottage.com/seeds-for-sale/

Bealtaine Cottage is free and has over 850 blogs, as well as over 3,500 photographs.

Bealtaine Cottage Good Life is a mere 12 euros per year and allows me a small income, to keep doing what I love doing most…writing about Mother Earth and photographing her.

To subscribe, a small donation of 12 euros per year, will add your name to the subscriber list.

                                                          Click on button below to join the website…

Thanks for your support!

Bealtaine Cottage YouTube is free from adverts, with over 100 videos to date.

Bealtaine Cottage Podcast is a free service.

Posted in Gardens, Ireland, Nature, Poetry, water, Wildlife

The Visit

Recently, I had the pleasure of welcoming one of my five brothers to Bealtaine Cottage.

Felim had visited very briefly once before, some years back, but this visit was different…something here, on this sacred little piece of Ireland, connected with him.

The energy that thrives here and the sheer joy of the living Mother Nature around him, touched his soul.

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Felim spoke little about his feelings at the time, but this week I received a poem he wrote, inspired by Bealtaine Cottage.

I have decided to share it with you, for it truly expresses an awakening deep in the heart of one who now “gets it!”

Here it is…

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BEALTAINE COTTAGE

A bruised and battered Mother Earth,

Driven to despair by the dearth

Of man’s ignorance of her needs,

Has found a nursery for her seeds

In the soil of this marshy slope.

Here she flourishes in hope-

In this arboreous pottage

Known as Bealtaine Cottage.

Three acres of managed landscape

Has reversed the ruminant rape

Of her natural rotation,

Restoring her to propagation,

Awarding her the well-earned fame

Which we once granted to her name.

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Now a nurturing Mother Earth

Displays the grandeur of her worth:

A forest of young varied trees

Offer feasting to hungry bees;

Small seeds imported from distant shores

Grow to saplings, their hopeful spores

Pollinated, sowing new birth

Within the womb of Mother Earth.

Their young branches shiver and shake

As birds alight, eager to make

Their own claim to the budding feast-

A bounty that will never cease.

At dawn each day, this feathered throng

Praise the earth with angel-song.

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And what about the Water Sprite,

Her sluggish flow a sorry plight?

Her new dug channels’ sparkling flow

Take her to the ponds below,

To spread her silt and rest awhile

Then disappear beneath the stile.

The ponds replace a former bog

And now play host to speckled frog,

While safe beneath the pond-weeds’ root

Swims a little crested newt.

A passing heron stops for tea,

(The food here, after all, is free.)

And willows of all shapes abound

They thrive on such well-watered ground.

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At Bealtaine there is a wealth

Of Mother Earth restored to health.

She shows her true vitality

All over this locality.

She integrates her plants and trees

With cuckoos, wrens and bumble bees;

While Water Sprite, once so random,

Now flows along with her in tandem:

And all because a loving hand

Was laid upon this stretch of land;

A hand with skill to recognise

That Mother Earth is strong and wise;

And if allowed, she will restore

Her bounty to our slopes once more.

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“Bealtaine Cottage” by Felim O’Neill.

Composed on the evening of my return from two days at Bealtaine Cottage.

Posted in Fairies, Ireland, Landscape, tales

The Shining Ones

To understand Celtic Spirituality we must suspend the normal way of looking at the world and ‘sense’ the other worlds around us.”
– Donald McKinney, Celtic Spirituality for the 21st Century

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Looking North East towards Slieve Anieirin Mountain…

Slieve Anierin, known as the Iron Mountain, is a magical landscape, where Iron Age people once mined Iron Ore. 

Slieve Anierin in Leitrim; Sliabh-an-iarainn, the mountain of the iron; from its richness in iron ore.

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Bealtaine Cottage is surrounded by landscape, where traces of ancient peoples are to be found with ease. 

The Tuatha de Danaan were one of these ancient races and were also known as the Shining Ones.

Candle at Bealtaine Cottage

Few people are aware of the fact that it was these people who became the origins of what we know worldwide as the Fairies…or the Sidhe.

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This was the Tribe that became the Sídhe…the Fairy Folk.

The stories of the Sidhe abound in Ireland.

We live alongside our ancestors.

This path at Bealtaine leads down into the Fairy Wood.

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There is much written about the 

Sídhe, pronounced “shee”, and a lot of the writings are contradictory, much like the 

Sídhe themselves! 

www.bealtainecottage.com

Living among the remnants of ancient tribes, as I do, here in the West of Ireland, watching skies with stars so bright, they illuminate the night, it is easy to believe in theSídhe…even revere them at times.

www.bealtainecottage.com

There comes a shift in perception, when one’s closest allies are the invisible forces of Nature.

Where does reality begin and end?

What is actual and what is reflection?

For much of it is coloured by perception. 

www.bealtainecottage.com

This was something debated by the Romantic Poets, as they often explored the world around them, using reflections, as they held up mirrors to gaze into Nature.

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There are many tales relating the emergence of Fairies in Irish Folklore.

Many legends recall how once  great Queens, Kings and Warriors became

Sídhe 

upon death.

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In turn, these mortals went on to  establish new kingdoms in the ancient mounds and hills of the landscape we know today.

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It is easy to regard these ancient sites with reverence and understanding, for even though there are millenia of time that separate us from them, they are part of our ancestral being.

Bealtaine Cottage moon rising over the permaculture gardens

The true origin of the legendary Tuatha De Danaan lies somewhere between the worlds of reality and perception of reality.

The name means literally “the folk of the god whose mother is Dana.”  

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It is merely recorded, that they appeared, as the clouds rose, from the mountain of Slieve Anierin, on the day of Bealtaine, the first day of May…Summer.

************* 

Bealtaine Cottage is free and has over 850 blogs, as well as over 3,500 photographs.

Bealtaine Cottage Good Life is a mere 12 euros per year and allows me a small income, to keep doing what I love doing most…writing about Mother Earth and photographing her.

To subscribe, a small donation of 12 euros per year, will add your name to the subscriber list.

                                                          Click on button below to join the website…

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Bealtaine cottage crafts 010Bog Oak Pendants are available from the Bealtaine Cottage Craft Shop. (Sorry, all are now sold. No longer available!)

Each pendant is hand-crafted from locally sourced Irish Bog Oak, an ancient and profoundly mysterious wood that’s been buried in the Irish peat bogs for thousands of years.

These pendants are made from wood dated as 5,600 years old.

Visit:

https://bealtainecottage.com/craft-shop/

Posted in Earth, festivals, Ireland, Permaculture, Poetry

A Free Festival!

“The poetry of the earth is never dead.” – John Keats

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Amid much conflict in the world, austerity, unemployment and strife, the seamless story of Mother Earth moves across the landscape.

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In these days of early Spring in the west of Ireland, her joyfulness plays out in the changing earth beneath our feet, as sap pushes up stems and trunks, thickening buds as it moves the life force skywards.

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Earlier mornings, filled with birdsong.

Hens back laying eggs.

Sunshine and showers.

There is a deep sense of an Ode to Joy!

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The world of man is in chaos…and always has been in one form or another.

Yet, here in Nature, Great Mother Nature, time continues in an almost unaltered way.

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I say “almost,” because, of course, Mother earth has been greatly harmed by Mankind.

Today, I do not want to write about that, but instead invoke a little of the joy that is manifesting around us all.

The earth, here in the northern hemisphere, is inviting us all to a long party.

The doors have opened, the dance has begun!

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The brown mantle of winter is now cast aside and the greening has begun.

Already there are lambs in the fields and Catkins emerging on Willow.

There are no tickets to be bought for this party…all is free!

You are even allowed to take things away from the party and bring them home…flowers, Catkins, sunshine, food and even music.

Open your doors and windows to the music…it is magical music indeed!

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Mother Earth holds no fear…she sings despite the wars.

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Mother Earth is not impoverished…she keeps giving despite austerity.

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Mother Earth cares not for politicians or governments…she will not be governed or subdued.

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Mother Earth knows no religion, for she is the great Creatrix.

Bring nothing but joy!

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