Rituals of Midwinter

Christmas Eve in an Irish Cottage

In preparing for the season of Yule, I follow the age old traditions of all the women who have gone before me. Preparation is everything. This begins in the home and involves casting an eye over all that will be of importance during this sacred time of gathering. I am driven with the desire to […]

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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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Into the Turning

The bonfire of Midsummer night has died down. The midnight sky stays light on the northern horizon. Bats encircle the cottage, as stars emerge into the darkness. The day has passed into the Turning…of the light. As the light passes into the lazy warmth of an enduring summer, visitors to Bealtaine Cottage come and go. […]

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The Light of Spring

Sammy-Bear lies concussed by the heat from the wood burning stove! It’s a tough life being a cat at Bealtaine Cottage! Over the past week there has been a struggle between Winter and Spring as temperatures have moved up and down the thermometer, with hard frost, heavy rain, warm nights and brilliant sun all in […]

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Half Light and Shadows

The apricot glow of a fading October sky, merged with the heavy rustling of cows on the field across the lane, drawing me outdoors. This is a magical time of enchantment, with Nature and late evening light. Any noise on such a still evening exudes an eerie quality of something not understood…always best to go […]

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Light, Midwinter Sun, Signs and John Seymour

Light What an opportunity! As we descend into the dark days of midwinter, what better thing to do than light a candle and enjoy the soft light and warmth. I was making candles today to add to my stockpile for the coming weeks, when candlelight is really the best light medium to illuminate the darkness. […]

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A Celtic Blessing

May the light of your soul guide you. May the light of your soul bless the work that you do with the secret love and warmth of your heart. May you see in what you do the beauty of your own soul. May the sacredness of your work bring healing, light and renewal to those […]

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Here Comes the Sun…Permaculture Smallholding, Ireland

It’s time to start sowing seeds, especially if you have a propagator. Light has returned and there is a definite stretch in the days. The signs of spring are to be found everywhere. Daffodils are up really early and buds are starting to thicken on the lower bushes. “In the depth of winter, I finally […]

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