Category Archives: Book of Shadows

Happy 2015 and Winter Blessings……….

Merry Meet my friends!  I’m a bit later writing a blog post for the New Year than I should be. My muse left me I think while I recovered from the holidays! I hope that you all had a very happy Yule, Christmas, and New Year with your loved ones and friends.  I know I did.  It was even a slower paced holiday season for us this year and much enjoyed.  We ate too much, relaxed, visited with friends and family, had gift exchanges and watched the ball drop quietly.  The holiday decorations are packed away til next year and the house has been cleaned and cleansed and the fireplace often has a crackling fire happily going. There’s often something baking in the oven or simmering on the stove, and my stack of books I want to read this year actually has had a dent put in it 🙂

Today is a beautiful, blue sky, sunny day but it is also a deep freeze out there!  We got about 5-6 inches of snow a few days ago and since then we have had a lot of negative temperatures as well.  I don’t mind it too much though.  I love nesting in for cold Winter days..cause I can.  I know not everybody has that luxury of not having to go out, I’m blessed that way. Freezing wind that takes your breath away and watching snow fall isn’t bad at all when you’re cozy and warm indoors. But I also like to go outside in the Winter. There is something bracing and beautiful about the quietness of Winter.  The skies when clear, are so clear as to hurt your eyes.  At night, the inky, cold black of the skies makes the stars and Moon shine so brilliantly. Don’t you think so?  Taking walks while a soft snow falls is such a wonderful thing to do too.

I posted this picture the other day from facebook on my page.  I have seen it before and love it.  I don’t know who the original poster of this picture is but credit is given on the picture itself for this one.

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Earthing…..a concept I’ve always been familiar with but didn’t know what to call it.  When I was a kid, it was for me “getting out in nature” or “sinking my feet in the ground” or “connecting with Mother Earth.”   I love the term Earthing and have adopted it.  When I posted this picture I asked my friends how they go Earthing in the dead of Winter with snow on the ground.  I got some great answers and had a few of my own and thought I’d share them with you.  For many people, Winter is a depressive time of year. The “Winter Blues” is a very real thing.  Oh sure, some of us just grouse and complain about the cold and missing Summer etc (not me I don’t LOL) but for many it’s a real depression that sets in.  For Witches, being outside with our bare feet in the dirt is a necessity of Life.  It’s a serious need.  It centers us, grounds us, lifts our spirits physically, mentally and spiritually.  It’s a huge part of our spirituality.  This connection to Mother Earth….not just seeing her but FEELING her.  In the Winter, needless to say, being barefoot can be an issue.  So here are a few ideas for those who need that connection..no matter what your Path is.

*Go ahead and go barefoot.  For however long you can handle it 🙂  I got that answer several times from my friends.  Feel that mushy earth and cold snow under your feet.  Or the hard, cold ground.  Come in and soak your feet in a nice warm salt bath and your spirits will be lifted and your feet will feel great!

*Go out and hug a tree.  Another popular response.  Feel that connection to Earth through a strong tree that stands stark and dark in the cold weather.  The vibrations are there for you to absorb and feel.

*Take a walk.  This seems obvious to me but a lot of people don’t like walking in the snow.  Of course, if there’s an inch of ice out there don’t go and hurt yourself. But bundling up and taking a brisk walk is good for you anytime. Collect some things from nature while you’re out.  Pine cones, acorns, rocks, feathers, greens etc.  Bring them home and place them in a bowl with a lit white candle.  The scent will fill your house with outdoors.  Light a roaring fire and have a hot chocolate or coffee.and you’ll feel exhilarated!

*Get out your gardening books, magazines, catalogs and start planning your gardens for Spring. Perusing them, dreaming of working in your gardens will help you to remember that Spring will be here before you know it.  Perhaps you can plant some seed starters and get started inside.  The scent of green things growing in rich dirt in little pots should help you a lot and you’ll have an early start on your gardens.  I was at Lowe’s the other day and they already have their seeds and pots out!

*Keep indoor plants.  Watering and tending to indoor plants keeps your hands in the dirt.  Some herbs on your kitchen window sill, some large tropical or tree plants in the house are always nice.

*Take a class on gardening or herbs.  I’m working over this Winter and however long it takes me, on an herbalist class. It  keeps me thinking of being outdoors growing my herbs, their scent, cutting and drying them etc.  I still have herbs hanging in my kitchen I have dried. Rubbing my hands over them and smelling those wonderful scents keeps me in mind of warmer days with the Sun on my back, feet on the ground and hands dirty from digging.  Happy thoughts indeed!

* Get some Sun!  There are a LOT of gloomy, overcast days in the Winter.  If I get the blues over the Winter, it’s often because of lack of sunshine. I don’t care how cold it is outside if the Sun is shining.  Find that sunny spot in the house and sit there for a bit, face to the Sun.  Absorb it into your skin.  You’ll feel better right away.  On those gloomy days..light candles, turn on lights, put on upbeat music.  Do something to make yourself feel light!  Cats and dogs are a perfect example of how much fun laying in the Sun can be.  They search out those spots don’t they? 🙂  Do as they do 🙂

*Go outside and do something fun..something adventurous!  Go sledding, skiing, ice skating, ice fishing or play hockey. Get that sense of snow days that kids have. Remember that?  As kids weren’t snow days just the best things in the world?  We didn’t sit around bemoaning the cold….nope…we got bundled up and stayed outside until our toes and fingers were frozen, our noses were running and cheeks were bright red.  But our eyes too were sparkling and our energy was abounding and we had FUN!!   Do that!!

*Give yourself a project to do.  Perhaps de-cluttering and organizing your house. Cleaning out closets and drawers is so satisfying. Perhaps you’ve always wanted to write a book, paint, crochet, spin wool, throw a pot, play with clay, start a blog, learn yoga or meditation, etc etc.  Witches can work on their grimoires or book of shadows. Keep yourself busy doing something you love. Or learn something new. You get the idea.

Well, these are just a few ideas, I’m sure there are many more.  Don’t let Winter become something dreary and hated that you just have to get through before the days of Sunshine and roses come back.  Winter is a long season and that is a LOT of days to feel bad, feel sad, to dread.  Every day is a gift, no matter the weather.  Make the most of it. If being lazy and reading is all you want to do ..then good..do it. But do it cheerfully with a smile on your face okay?

Blessings of the Winter season to you and may 2015 bring you all the joy and happiness you deserve! I’ll be back soon with bits of magick I’m working on here and there and of course recipes etc.  Imbolc will be before we know it!

Blessings and love, Autumn

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Filed under Book of Shadows, Books, Cleaning & Organizing, Family, Friends

I <3 Herbs……Peppermint!

Happy Sun day my friends!  I hope that you are all having a wonderful Litha/Solstice weekend.  I know I have been.  Today, as I said in my Wheel Turns to Litha blogpost,  I am actually on my way to the beautiful, magickal Smoky Mountains for several days with all my family.  I’m so excited to be in the mountains again…it always feels like I’m going home when I go there!

Today, this blogpost is again attached to my writing at The Sunday Stew.  You will find a partial posting there and the entire post and info here.  With my new blog look, just click on The Sunday Stew cauldron at the right here -> and it will take you straight to it.  Also, if you want to print out this info for your BOS or herb book…you will see the link at the bottom of this post to do that.  So here we go!

 

 

Peppermint

 

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While mint plants flourish all over the world, they are native to the Mediterranean and were spread by the Roman Empire. A Greek myth tells of an elderly couple taking the time to wipe down their table with mint leaves before serving a meal to traveling strangers. When the strangers revealed themselves as the Gods Zeus and Hermes, the couple was rewarded and the herb was then associated with hospitality! There is nothing nicer too, then visiting with friends over a nice cup of Peppermint tea.

 

People have used Peppermint for thousands of years. The ancient Egyptians, Romans and Greeks added it to meat dishes and wine and utilized the leaves as a decoration for special occasions. Peppermint oil has antibacterial and antiseptic qualities. Herbalists prescribe Peppermint tea as a remedy for chest congestion, stomach troubles and headaches….and recommend Peppermint skin lotion as a pain reliever. Peppermint oil also enhances the fragrance of potpourri, cosmetics, shampoos, soaps and perfumes. Its leaves and oil add flavor to salads, desserts, teas, and sauces, as well as breath mints, chewing gum, toothpaste and mouthwash.

 

Growing Mint

 

For the best leaf production, mint should be planted in full to partial sunlight. It will grow in most types of soil, but thrives best when it’s not constantly wet. The plants can be counted to reproduce on their own, but additional plants can be grown by stem and root cuttings. The mint plant is notorious for running rampant in gardens! Many gardeners choose to grow them in containers to prevent gardens from becoming nothing but dedicated mint beds! (So far, I’m controlling my mint ok….we’ll see what happens J) However, with containers, you have to be careful the pot is big enough so you don’t get root bound and the plant dies. That happened to me last year and I was so bummed! The spread can be kept to a manageable level by steadily harvesting the leaves of the plant. Peppermint plants grow to about 2 feet tall if allowed. Tiny oil glands in the leaves release volatile oils, giving the plants their wonderful fragrance.

 

 

Hybrids

 

There is an amazing number of mint hybrids out there now. Peppermint and Spearmint are the two most traditional forms. Smooth-leaved peppermint has the most potent amount of menthol, while spearmint, with toothed and often curly leaves, has a sweeter flavor. Varieties with a hint of fruit flavor abound! Including apple, orange, pineapple, lemon, lime and even banana! And yes, there is Chocolate mint….it’s growing in my garden and it’s wonderful!

 

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In the front is Peppermint..moving clockwise is Pineapple Mint,

Then Spearmint, and then really wonderful Chocolate mint.

 

Drying Mint Leaves

 

The simplest way is to cut the stems down low on the plant….wrap a bunch of them together and hang them upside down to dry in a warm, dry place. I hang mine from hooks in my ceiling. I’ve also used a peg board and a clothes drying rack. If the leaves are removed from the stem, just spread out on a clean metal screen, a tray, a basket and let them dry. You can also dry them in a low temp oven.

 

Culinary Uses

 

Mint leaves can be added to mixed greens in a salad, can be candied or jellied, and can be made into a simple syrup. Mint is often used in sauces for lamb dishes and are a popular way to flavor peas. They can flavor homemade ice cream and granitas. One of my favorite ways to have mint is crushed into mint juleps or mojitos! They can also be made into wonderful herbed ice cubes that make tea, lemonade and just water so refreshing!

 

Medicinal Uses

 

Peppermint, in tea form, aids upset stomachs, flu and can be used to ease hiccups. Inhalation of the leaves in boiling water is recommended for head colds and asthma. Mint tea can be used instead of aspirin for headaches, especially menstrual –related headaches. Some headaches can be relieved if you lie down in a dark room with fresh peppermint leaves on the forehead or a bit of peppermint essential oil on your temples. (be careful your skin is ok with that first) Mint aids in respiratory and circulatory systems, it’s also an anti-inflammatory and an antiseptic. It’s ideal for treating indigestion, flatulence, varicose veins, skin irritations, rheumatism, toothache and general fatigue. I, for one, find Peppermint spray brings me out of the “lazies”. Peppermint oil can help to relieve earaches when a few drops are placed in the ear. The oil or a mesh bag of the leaves in your bath is wonderful when you have a cold or need to soothe your skin, or to re-energize yourself!

Peppermint tea with honey soothes a sore throat. A few drops of the essential oil mixed with water and applied to a cloth, will help burning and itching skin, sunburn and relieve when you get overheated. As a lover of all things herbal, I love to add some peppermint, lemon and lavender essential oils to witch hazel…it makes a wonderful body/face spray to cool you too. Peppermint is a necessity in every Witch’s cupboard and garden bed! It’s in my top five!!

 

Magickal Properties

 

Gender: Masculine

Planet: Mercury or Venus

Element: Air

Deity: Zeus and Hermes

Magickal attributes: Money, healing, strength, augments power, luck, travel, cleansing, consecration, dreams, happiness, love, passion, prosperity, protection, psychic development, purification, release, renewal, rest, sleep, animals, divination, endings, energy, exorcism, grieving, spirit offerings, success and transformation.

 

To use Peppermint in Magick….these are just some of the ways:

 

-Mint is a premier healing herb and can be used in healing charms, baths and incenses

-For a bath, place leaves in a mesh bag and hang under the running tap, or add a few drops of the oil to the water before you get in.

-Use to increase the vibrations of a space or in spells and incense for purification and healing

-Place in a sleep pillow to ensure peaceful sleep and bring about prophetic dreams

-Use to anoint your altar, body and candles

-Burn in your home to clear illness and negative energy

-Use in magickal workings to provide to gear up the energy level

-Carry in a mojo bag to boost healing, love and abundance

-Make a tea and sprinkle the water around your home to bring peace, happiness and protection

-Drink it for its ability to enhance your power before doing a ritual, spell or meditation

-Carry a few leaves in your wallet to bring money and prosperity and success

-Use the oil in a burner, in room or body sprays or as a simmering pot on the stove to lift the spirit and energy in your home

-Grow it…for protection, prosperity, health, luck and abundance!

 

To print this out click on this link  Peppermint 2

 

As I say…Every Witch should have Peppermint in her top 5 (my opinion) of herbs in her garden and cupboard.  Oh and the essential oil too is a must!!  Have a wonderful day and continue to have fun, to feast,to dance, and celebrate the longer days…the lazy, hazy crazy days of Summer!!

 

Blessings and Love, Autumn

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Book of Shadows, Family, Garden, Herbs, Litha/Summer Solstice, My Favorite Things, Nature, Photography, Ritual, Seasons, Smoky Mountains, Spells, Summer, Sun

The Wheel Turns to Mabon 2012………..

Merry Meet my friends! I am late posting a Mabon post this year but I have good reason!  My Life has been crazy busy.  We have been working hard on getting our house ready to sell.  Also, we went on vacation last week!  To Panama City Florida…my whole family…hubby, daughters, son-in-law and grandbabies.  Took two friends with us as well to help care for my daughter Sara.  We had a fabulous time….My Sea Witch Self re-emerged.  Resting, relaxing, good eating, beautiful Sunrises and Sunsets, and a waning crescent Moon all made for great magick on the Beach!  A good time was had by all..much needed with all we had been through this year.

We were thrilled to see we were coming home to beautiful, Autumn weather.  Signs of Autumn are everywhere I look now.  Windows and screen doors are open during the day and nights are cool.  Leaves are starting to turn, gardens are losing their color, critters are busier, birds are flocking, stores are filled with Autumn and Halloween decorations.  Mums, pumpkins and Fall flowers are showing up at garden centers.  My mind is turning to my slow cooker, baking, cider and apples.  My clothes are changing over to long sleeves and light jackets or sweaters..and yes..even flannel jammies 🙂  Wood is piled in the fireplace and outdoor fire pit..ready to go.   Ahhhhh….I am maybe..just maybe..starting to forget (a little)  how miserable Summer was with it’s sweltering Heat LOL.  My soul soars at this wonderful time of year!

Mabon…the 2nd Harvest festival…is Saturday the 22nd.  I love all the Harvest Sabbats and this one is no exception.  I am planning a great meal, an outdoor by- the- fire ritual, and will be decorating my house for Autumn as well.  For me, Mabon is the time to reflect on the coming dark Season.  To finish up harvesting our gardens and herbs and putting our gardens to bed for the Winter.  Putting the last of the bounty up..by canning or freezing.   I start looking for projects to keep me busy as we come indoors more….like crochet, home projects, and of course Verbena Lane Botanicals is keeping me busy too 🙂  I also read more, journal more, work on my Book of Shadows etc…things that I can’t settle in to do during the Summer.  Cooking and baking!  This is my favorite time of year to cook….I’m perusing my recipe books like crazy already!

To get the Mabon Correpondences and recipes I’ve posted the last few years…just do a search in the archives.  I don’t think I can top the recipes I posted last year but  I’m searching out one or two more to post in the next day or so for you.

Mabon is a wonderful Sabbat….so much you can do to celebrate it.  Go for a walk and see what treasures from Mother Earth you can find….acorns, feathers, pine cones, stones, nuts, berries, colored leaves…bring them home and throw them in a beautiful wooden bowl with a brown, red, or rust pillar candle in the middle.  A beautiful centerpiece for your table or altar.  Have a soup party or Oktoberfest party.  Go pick your own apples and bake lots of yummy things with them.  Take the kids to the pumpkin patch. Rake up the leaves and jump in them!  I like to press beautiful leaves … then put them in a book, or frame or my Book of Shadows.  Mabon is a great time of year to banish the old and tired and bring in the new…new projects, new energies, new abundance, new thought patterns.  Learn something new….try something new!  You will have more time to do it…well…hopefully 🙂

“Leaves fall,the days grow cold.
The Goddess pulls her mantle of Earth around Her
as You, O Great Sun God, sail toward the West
to the land of eternal enchantment,
wrapped in the coolness of night.
Fruits ripen,seeds drip,
the hours of day and
night are balanced.”
–   Mabon Sabbat and Lore 

I hope you all have a wonderful week and would love to hear YOUR plans to celebrate this Sabbat.  I am off to get out my favorite cookbooks and see what I can find 😉  Happy Moon day and Mabon Blessings!

❤ Autumn

 

 

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Filed under Autumn, Book of Shadows, Family, Gardens, Mabon, Nature, Quote, Seasons

Imbolc Altar and my Book of Shadows……

Merry Meet my friends!  Hope you all have had a wonderful weekend.  Imbolc is just a few days away.  As I have posted here, I have been busy with my cleaning and organizing and getting ready to invite the Celtic Goddess Brighid into our home and to celebrate the coming of Spring.  Monday, I will do the more “everyday” cleaning like dusting and sweeping and wiping down bathrooms etc.  Tuesday I will smudge the house good.  Wednesday..Imbolc..which is also the New Moon by the way….I will spend time celebrating with my family.  That night I will be doing a ritual and lighting candles all over the house..and throwing open the doors to invite Brighid and all the good that Her coming brings. 

When I posted about Imbolc on a previous blog post, I wrote all the correspondences for this Sabbat.  When I put together my altar..I kept those in mind of course.  My altar cloth was a simple white cotton cloth.  I threw a green scarf across it to represent Brighid’s Mantle.  I then put all the tools that are always on my altar, my athame, wand, cauldron, elemental representative of candle, incense, salt and blessed water.  My pentacle tile and statues of Gaia and Greenman which are definitely appropriate for Imbolc. 

I then added my Goddess/God candles..red and my Fire candle is also red.  I place crystals of  Amethyst, bloodstone, garnet, onyx, moonstone, and red jasper. I have a gorgeous cherry quartz point in the center of my candles.   I have a bit of sunflower seeds and some healing herbs there as well.   I have a printed picture of Brighid in her Maiden aspect..beautiful as I picture her.  A poetry book to represent her being the Goddess of poetry.  Silver candlesticks and celtic symbol to represent her being the Goddess of smithcraft and honoring her being Celtic (as am I!).  My potted daffodils and   cakes and ale will be added when I’m ready to work at my alter.  I’m making the Lemon Poppyseed Bread I posted here..and I’m going to have spiced wine to drink.  I also have added 7 tealight candles in red and white…those are for  one of the rituals I’ll be doing Imbolc night…along with some special sisters of mine.  I look forward to working at this beautiful altar which I find magickal and beautiful. 🙂 After looking at this, I realize I forgot my lamb statue..I’ll add that in also..remember Imbolc means  ewe’s milk. 

I have been spending time when I can adding to my Book of Shadows…it seems to be a never ending process.  I am always adding information from books I’m reading, or from my facebook friends or from groups I belong to on facebook, and from the internet.  I DO use my computer to make up my pages.  Now I know that can be a controversy…many will say it should be all handwritten.  But my BOS is a very beautiful, fairly expensive book..and I have terrible handwriting…I want not only for me to easily read what is there..but I plan on passing down this book to my children and grandchildren and  I want them to be able to read it as well.  I love being able to change the fonts, the print size, add pics and flourishes.  There is some of my handwriting in the book..I make notations, add info etc in my own hand. 

Here is my BOS and a few examples of some of my favorite pages………

These are just a few of the pages I’ve done….I am getting more creative as I go along 🙂

When I look at my altar and my Book of Shadows…I feel so much pride and inspiration.  I try to live my life everyday in a way that speaks to my soul, that makes me happy, that honors the Divine, Mother Earth, the Elements.  I am proud of my path! Being a Witch, discovering my true self…has been Goddess sent…I am soo blessed to have the joy of all that this path I’m on entails.  I know so many of you know exactly how I feel.  When my day isnt’ the best day, or my mood is poor, or I feel overwhelmed,  all I have to do is have a sit at my altar, or go outside.  Light a candle, or grab a crystal.  I can read one of any beautiful inspiring quotes or poems in my BOS or just connect with the Goddess by sitting quiet and listening for Her message.  And then there’s the Moon! Ahh the Moon…how wonderful that we are so aware of Her mysteries, Her energy, Her power.  How wonderful to be a Witch!

Blessed Be, Autumn

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Filed under Altars, Book of Shadows, Goddess, Imbolc, Photography, Spring

New Moon Blessings……

Merry Meet my friends!  Blessed New Moon night to you all.  The first one after the New Year…the first one in 2011!  This one is even more magickal indeed as there is much happening in the sky.  Last night during the dark of the Moon, there was a meteor shower and early this morning with the Sunrise, there was a solar eclipse…magickal indeed!  Did you see it?  I was able to see a bit of the meteor shower but the clouds came in and that was that.  I love the New Moon almost as much as the Full Moon…the quiet and peacefulness, a black starry sky, and reflecting on the possibilities.  There is some amazing workings that can be done during the Dark and New Moon….if you aren’t utilizing it..you are missing out indeed!

Let’s start first with some correspondences about the New Moon:

 Time: From Dark Moon to Waxing Moon.

New Moon – The magic should be performed between dawn and sunset for the best use of this magic.  I have to say that I do not do my New Moon magick during the day.  I do mine before midnight!  I like to be out in it..out in that black inky sky.

Dark Moon – As odd as this may sound, the strongest pull of the dark moon is around 10:00 a.m.  Again, I like to be out at night 🙂 

Goddess Aspect:   Maiden

Dark Moon Godesses:    Hecate, Kali, Morrigan,  Callieach, Banshee,

New Moon Goddesses:  Inanna, Juno

Pagan Holiday: Winter Solstice
Goddess Name: Rosemerta’s Moon
Goddess Energy: Goddesses of growth
Offering: Milk and Honey
Theme: Abundance
Rune: Fehu for abundance, Kenaz for openings, Gebo for love
Tarot Trump: the Fool

Magickal Attributes:   Banishing,  Releasing the Old, Removing Unwanted Negative Energies, Wisdom, Psychic Abilities, Scrying, Reversing Circumstances. Also a great time to cleanse and consecrate your altar tools.

New Beginnings:   Weight loss, Goal setting, Planning, Cleaning, Personal Cleansing, General beginnings and considerations.

Spellwork for:     Starting new ventures, new beginnings, love, romance, health, or job hunting, and creative ventures.

New moon – beauty, health,  self-improvement,  planting gardens,  job hunting,  love and romance.

Dark moon – addictions, change, divorce, enemies, justice, obstacles, quarrels, removal, separation, stopping stalkers and theft.

As you can see, there is sooo much you can do during the New Moon.  Creative ventures to start?  How about working on your Book of Shadows, setting up a witches cupboard, starting a blog, writing spells.  Self-improvement? Being on time, finding balance in your life, exercising more, spending more “me” time.  Because the New Moon is a time for starting a-new, the spells will be very powerful to help you to manifest these types of desires.  Being the New Year, you may have some resolutions you want to stick to…the New Moon energy will help with that too!

The New Moon is a great time to cleanse and consecrate your altar tools, crystals, magickal jewelry etc.  Here is a ritual that I like for doing that.  I have had this ritual for a long time and don’t know where I got it from….Of course where it says (Tool), you will say what it is you are consecrating such as wand, athame, crystal, candle etc.

 Gather supplies needed and tools to be consecrated:

South/Fire…A white candle

West/Water…A chalice of water

North/Earth…A small bowl of salt

East/Air…incense

If your tradition requires you to cast a circle, do so now. Light the candle and the incense. Take the tool or other items you wish to consecrate in your hands, and face north. Pass it over the salt and say:

 Powers of the North, Guardians of the Earth,
I consecrate this (tool) and charge it with your energies.
I purify it this night, and make this tool sacred.
 

 Now, turn to the east and, holding the tool in the smoke of the incense, say:

Powers of the East, Guardians of the Air,
I consecrate this (tool) and charge it with your energies.
I purify it this night, and make this tool sacred.
 

 Next, face the south and pass the tool over the flame of the candle  and speak the words:

Powers of the South, Guardians of Fire,
I consecrate this (tool) and charge it with your energies.
I purify it this night, and make this tool sacred.

Finally, turn to the west, and pass your ritual tool over the cup of water. Say:

Powers of the West, Guardians of Water,
I consecrate this (tool) and charge it with your energies.
I purify it this night, and make this tool sacred.

Face your altar, hold the (tool) to the sky, and speak the words:

I charge this (tool) in the name of Old Ones,
the Ancients, the Sun and the Moon and the Stars.
By the powers of the Earth, of Air, of Fire and of Water
I banish the energies of any previous owners,
and make it new and fresh.
I consecrate this wand,
and it is mine.

So Mote It Be!

Now you’ve not only consecrated the tool, you’ve claimed ownership.

I will also make this Dark Moon oil blend and use it at my altar and on my tools.  Smells delicious!

Dark Moon Oil.

 7 drops Jasmine

      3 drops Chamomile

  3 drops Patchoul

 1 drop Sandalwood

 

New Moon Ritual

    In early societies, the reappearance of the moon was often a cause for celebration – after all, it meant that the dark had passed, and the full moon was on its way back. The following rite is one which welcomes the moon back at the beginning of her cycle.

     First, if your tradition requires you to cast a circle, do so at this time. If you don’t normally cast a circle, take the time to ritually purify the area by smudging or asperging. This will establish the space as sacred.

     Perform this ceremony outside if at all possible — it’s the best way to get a good look at the sliver of new moon. You’ll need a moon candle, wrapped in a black cloth, to place on your altar. This is traditionally a white unscented pillar-style candle. You’ll also need a hand-held mirror. Tie some silver and white ribbons on it if you wish. Finally, have a small bowl of Blessing Oil handy.

     Hold this ceremony at sunset if you can. Turn to the west, and watch as the sun goes down (without looking directly at it). Once the sun has dropped below the horizon, you’ll be able to see where the new moon is rising. Once you see the moon in the sky, unwrap the candle. Hold it up high and say:

Welcome back, Moon!
we’re glad to see you again.
Another cycle has passed
another month gone by
and our lives have moved forward.

 

Place the candle on the altar and light it, still facing the moon. Say:

 

 Today is a new day,
and a new month begins.
As the tides flow, and the moon rises above,
we are thankful that She has returned.
She watches over us, ever constant,
yet always changing,
and we are thankful for her light.

   Next, turn to face east, where the sun will rise in the morning. Pick up the mirror and hold it so you can see the new moon behind you. Say:

Bring us your wisdom, your guidance,
your protection, in the coming month.
You are behind me at every step,
watching and guiding me,
and I am thankful.

     Place the mirror back on the altar, beside the moon candle. Take a moment to reflect on your goals. After all, this is a time of new beginnings, and a good time for new commitments and vows. Warm the Blessing Oil over the candle for just a moment, and then anoint your forehead. As you do so, say:

May the blessings of the moon be with me.

     When you are ready, close the circle and end the ritual. If you choose, you can move into healing rites or magical workings, or a Cakes & Ale ceremony.

 

I love this ritual and find it very magickal.  I often call on Hecate to help me at the time of the Dark of the Moon; especially if I’m not clear on my course of action, what I want to focus on or change in my life.  Remember that she is a dark goddess and she is the Goddess of the crossroads.  She will help guide you if asked.  So I hope that each of you will take advantage of the energy during the dark and new moon and see what  changes, new beginnings, or adventures you can manifest in your life.  But don’t forget that you have to do the work as well!  You can’t do a spell to say, bring balance to your life, and then just sit back and hope it will happen.  Asking  the Goddess for help is wonderful, finding the Goddess within you and doing the work yourself..well,  that will make you feel powerful, strong and joyful in your accomplishment.  Perhaps keep a journal of what you are trying to manifest, your goals for achieving it, the work you do to make it happen, and the outcome.  Writing it down will help you to focus and get the job done!

So good luck my friends, and again, New Moon Blessings and Goddess Bless, Autumn

*Sources..I’m afraid I have had this information so long I don’t have my sources..if you know, feel free to tell me.  I appreciate very much whoever wrote them 🙂    Also, these two pictures are from the internet.

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Filed under Book of Shadows, Goddess, New Moons, Oil Blend Recipe, Ritual, Spells

Saying good-bye to 2010……

Merry Meet my friends.  I hope that you all had a fabulous holiday and that Santa was good to you all!  I had a very nice holiday myself and my family was very generous and thoughtful this year…there were many “witchy” presents under our tree, for my daughters and myself.  My hubby got me the camera I had been wanting as well..can’t wait to play with the powerful zoom lens! 🙂  

If you’re like me, pretty quick after the last present is open and the feast is over and everything put away…it’s time to think about taking down the decorations! LOL!  For me this starts immediately.  All of the sudden I feel the need to clear out all the clutter that I find so beautiful and charming when the holiday season starts.  I want to put it all away, de-clutter, organize, clean.  As a witch, I also start thinking about clearing the house of the stale air and any negative energy.  I start thinking of projects I can work on during the long winter ahead.

I have blogged about how to do a house cleansing here before so I wont’ go into it again.  But I will be doing a thorough cleaning this week.  New Year’s eve I will do a thorough cleansing.  I will also at midnight throw open the doors and invite in positive, healthy energy and send out the old, negative energy! Grab your broom and sweep out all the things, both physical and mental, that no longer serve you well.  Do  a good smudging and a quick chant…that should do the trick!  I will also spend some time at my altar which will be set up just simply…holding only my elemental reps,  My god and goddess candles, some crystals, and my working tools.  As I think about what I want to come my way in the new year, I will place sympathy items there to represent those hopes…such as coins for prosperity,  a red heart stone for love,  a band aid for good health, food and drink for abundance, a 4 leaf clover charm for good luck, etc. Think about what you would like to have come your way and place items on your altar as well.  Ask god and goddess to bless you in the new year to come..you know they are listening! 🙂

We are heading for the New Moon as well soon.  Want to start a new project for winter?  The New Moon is the perfect time for that as all witches know!  I am going to tackle my attic to get rid of junk, turn a never used sewing room into a room for my grandkids, make a quilt for my granddaughter’s big girl room, and work on my Book of Shadows…seriously work on that!  I will catch up on reading as I will have more time to do that and will start working on making some herbal remedies I’m in need of as well.

I know alot of people don’t love Winter, but I say it’s an opportunity to both relax and reflect, and  a time to get your home organized and cleaned out for the coming spring.  Winter gives you time to work on those projects that you always want to do but don’t seem to have the time to do.  What will you do this winter?  What would you like to accomplish?  Find something to look forward to, don’t let the blues or the “I’m so bored” take over!  Think about spring coming..maybe you’d like to peruse gardening books and plan your garden.  Paint a room a pretty spring color like yellow or green or lilac.  Work on your BOS or make up some lotions and potions.  All of these things will make winter go faster and be more enjoyable and you’ll feel so good and so accomplished!

New Year’s resolutions?  Do you do them?  I have done them in the past and of course, like everybody else, start out with good intentions and work hard to do them, but they soon fall to the wayside.  I quit doing them many years ago.  This year however, I have a few things that I would like to resolve to do..to improve my life.  These I hope are very doable for me 🙂

*Be kind and speak softly

*Open myself up to receive love from others and to give love in return

*Practice witchcraft somehow, everyday

*Continue to learn and grow in my path..becoming stagnant is to lose my magick

*To be the best I can be

*To live in the moment

*To honor the Goddess and the Earth everyday in all I do

*Practice random acts of kindness

I hope these are things I can “do” everyday…hopefully without even giving it a thought..that it just comes naturally.  Have you thought about resolutions?  Things you’d like to bring into your life, that you want to change about your life?  Now is the time! 

Love and Blessings, Autumn

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Filed under Altars, Book of Shadows, Discussion, Goddess, New Moons, Winter

Storm moon….

Tonight is the full moon of March ..this year called the Storm Moon.  I unfortunately can’t see the moon as we are under a very cloudy, dark, dismal sky all day today and continuing into the night.  Tomorrow its supposed to clear up and the sun is coming out and its warming up..so I’ll be doing my full moon spellwork tomorrow night, out on my porch.

I like to recharge my crystals and silver jewelry in the light of the full moon.  I also will be making up some Blessed Water.  I bought a beautiful bottle to put it in and can’t wait to use it.  The Storm Moon is perfect for performing cleansing, purification and healing spells too.  So putting your altar ritual tools out in the moonlight will cleanse and purify them until the next full moon.

The best news I have to tell you is that I finally received my beautiful Book of Shadows from Witches Moon.  It took 7 months which seemed like forever but it was well worth the wait!  My book is everything I dreamed it would be and more.  It looks aged, it smells great, the paper and leather are awesome and my triquetra on the binding looks amazing. I have started working on getting my pages I’ve worked on for months in the book, deciding what goes where etc.  It’s going to take a while but I believe my Book will be a a real heirloom to pass down to my grandchildren in time and something I’ll be proud of and cherish.  I’ve also now ordered a smaller version of it for a herb book..hope it doesn’t take 7 months for it to get here!  I ordered one for my daughter Willow also.  She is still waiting for her book of shadows to come..my other daughter Luna, sister Teagan have received their books now too.  Poor Willow, she ordered hers first and its still not here! 

Today I got my herbs planted in the little paper pots, made up cute little herb markers and got them in the window where the Sun comes shining in the mornings.  Can’t wait to see how they start sprouting.  I’ll plant them in large patio pots probably around Beltane (May 1).  I planted a few veggies too but mostly herbs.  How wonderful it’ll be to go out and pick my own fresh herbs for cooking and for spellwork.

Well, thats it for now..Have a blessed Full Moon..Autumn

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Filed under Book of Shadows, Full Moons, Garden