Christmas Eve in the West of Ireland

There was  a full moon on the Winter Solstice, an unusual event and not occurring in my lifetime again, so, very special to me. As my ancestors before me, I celebrate the Solstice, marking the longest night of the year and with the promise of all that lies ahead… The ritual of fire and feast, […]

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Happy Bealtaine, the 1st Day of Summer in the Celtic Calendar.

The Celtic Festival of Bealtaine, also spelt as Beltane, Beltain, Beltainne and Beltaine is a Cross Quarter Day. This means,  that it is half way between the Spring Equinox and Summer Solstice. Of course, as nothing is static in the Universe,  the actual astronomical date is a number of days later.   This year, 2013, […]

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Saint Brigid’s Day, Imbolc and the 1st of Spring!

Making a St. Brigid’s cross is a special traditional ritual here in Ireland. The ancient festival of Imbolc reminds us that deep in the earth lie the dormant seeds of new life and creativity Brigid, the goddess of fire, whose manifestations were song, craftsmanship, and poetry, which the Irish considered the flame of knowledge. This […]

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Stonehenge, Newgrange and the Cycle of Life

The autumn continues to progress through it’s mellow display of earthy colours. Tomorrow is the Equinox and the beginning of the descent towards midwinter. The time of year denotes the slowing down of all that is life as we know it. Time to sort out the winter woolies and hang the heavy curtains to keep out the […]

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The Festival of Bealtaine

Aquilegia, now growing all over the permaculture gardens and driveway of Bealtaine Cottage, from its beginnings here 8 years ago, with a handful of seed, saved from a some flowers growing in a garden in North London. The time is near…Mayday, known as Bealtaine here in Ireland. It is pronounced “Be Al Tan Ah” Irish […]

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Making and Using Compost on a Permaculture Smallholding.

Here’s a 5 minute video from Bealtaine Cottage on making and using compost on a permaculture smallholding.   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mLkBREOi8hE&feature=plcp&context=C4035676VDvjVQa1PpcFOWi9w1WJ3Ko7EephcqjG1KM5MBe0Xa1V8%3D

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A Dog’s Life

I lit the fire in the bedroom yesterday evening as there was a chill on the night air. This is a deceptive time of year, when the evenings can end up being much colder than during the winter! It wasn’t long before Jack snook in and laid his head against the bed in a pleading […]

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On the Eve of Imbolc…

Imbolc is a time to celebrate the promise of Spring and to think about planting… Imbolc, or St Brigid’s Day  Lá Fhéile Bríde,  is an Irish festival marking the beginning of spring. Imbolc is celebrated on the 1st day of February, the date that falls approximately halfway between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox. The holiday was, and […]

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Permaculture Cottage ~ Many Magical Trees

The Life Force of Trees It was a common belief, long ago, that many conditions could be cured by bringing the patient into contact with the powerful life force or MANA represented by trees… Nearly 800 trees have been planted here at Bealtaine and there is something so awesome about trees that makes me want […]

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