As the days grow shorter and the evenings longer there is a quietness in the gardens and around the cottage that is rather haunting. Much of what I do now is centred around preparing for the Midwinter Feast and the continuing festivities of Yule. Family and friends will be arriving from as far away as […]

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Yule and the Turning of the Wheel

bealtaine cottage dec 11 007

Origins of Yule The great Festival of Yule, beginning at the time of the Winter Solstice and lasting for a full twelve days, summed up the cycle of the Celtic year. The word Yule, according to the Venerable Bede, came from the Norse word Iul meaning ‘wheel’ and suggested that this was the time when […]

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The Night of the Thin Veil

September has been an extraordinary month of sun and still air, little has moved and time has appeared to stand still. Sunrises and sunsets have been spectacular. Indeed, September 2013 will be remembered here in Ireland for the “Indian Summer,” often promised and rarely received! Tomorrow is the last day of September. We are now […]

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The Quickening

As we approach the Equinox, the sun appears strong and bright in the morning sky, a clear sky at that, gathering together the ingredients for a perfect Autumn day. A day for walking, stopping often and observing the quickening of change, in all that grows and flies. I watched the Swallows flying high in the […]

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A Time of Early Shadows

Autumn is a time of early shadows as the season of summer passes over. Scents of woodsmoke and compost fill the air. Samhain is close. The Celts divided the year into two parts…the light and the dark. Samhain is the crossover point into the dark. Seamus Heaney wrote a wonderful collection of poetry entitled, “Into […]

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