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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Equinox and Early Shadows

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Autumn is a time of early shadows as the season of summer passes over. And cobwebs everywhere! And here, in the Northern Hemisphere, one can easily notice the later dawns and earlier sunsets,as Spring is ushered in south of the Equator. Equinox is all about balance…the balance of equal day and night, of dark and light. […]

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Moving with Orion Towards Midwinter

The signs are everywhere… Nights drawing in… Unexpected sunshine on frosted mornings. The bare beauty of trees silhouetted against clear winter skies.  As Orion strides across the evening sky, we draw closer to the Winter Solstice and the darkest, stillest, nights of the year. Winter Solstice celebrations begin on the 21st of December, a time […]

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Otherworldly…

 Sunday afternoon…picking flowers in the gardens. This feels like the full, quiet days before giving birth… The force of the full moon can still be felt in the stillness of the late afternoon air. There is an otherworldly feel to it all… Time appears to stand very still. Bees continue in a frenzy of work […]

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Midsummer Rising

Polytunnel at Bealtaine Cottage

Farewell Bealtaine! Rising on the last morning of Bealtaine and looking out the window of the lodge to be greeted by mist and sunshine. The heat of yesterday rose in a mist over the valley and mountains beyond. Rising towards Midsummer is a most magical time in the west of Ireland. Between the rain and […]

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A Magical Midsummer Morning…

Happy Solstice everyone… In this special year of the return of the Divine Feminine… There will be a full moon on Sunday, June 23… And it’s a rather special one… The biggest moon at Midsummer It will not only be the largest full moon of the year… It will also be the moon’s closest encounter […]

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Imbolc and the Ascent of Spring

Bealtaine Cottage stained glass

   The ancient peoples of the Earth celebrated the seasons by paying close attention to the skies above them, especially at night, when clear, and observation was undertaken. The Celts were particularly aligned in all aspects of their lives, with the precession of the Equinoxes and the timing of the seasons. Time was, and remains, […]

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