Category Archives: Nature

The Wheel turns to Mabon 2019…..

Blessed MabonMerry Meet and good afternoon!  I hope this post finds you all well and enjoying a great weekend.  In my time zone, Mabon or the Autumn Equinox is during the night tonight at 3:50am.  It’s officially Autumn, and the time of equal balance of day and night.  My favorite time of year, as those of you who know me or have followed me any length of time, know! I’m normally squealing with glee, but here in Ohio we have had incredibly hot, dry days for way too long, with no real end in sight.  Upper 80’s and even 90’s are in the forecast clear up into October.  This is not normal and I for one feel really disgruntled by it.  I need Summer to be gone!

The dryness especially will effect our Autumn color.  The leaves are seriously just turning brown and crunchy and falling off the trees like crazy.  Garden beds look dismal or empty as people have given up on watering and just yanked everything out.  Including me.  My last herbal harvest will be pretty pitiful.  It’s just been too hard to keep them watered and growing.  People seem to be grumpy and dragging in energy etc….me too. It’s all very sad and disheartening.

However, despite all this, I’ve decided to pretend it’s Fall.  Candles are lit instead of fires.  I’ve Fall cleaned my house.  I’m decorating the house this week, and will go buy my mums, pumpkins and apples and just try to pretend it’s in the 60’s instead of the 80’s.  The flannel sheets will have to wait but otherwise this house is going to be all Autumnal, damn it!  LOL! I also am doing some baking, some crockpot cooking and of course, preparing to celebrate Mabon.  My sweaters are ready to be worn as well!

Some of my discouragement has been that I’ve injured my left knee pretty badly.  It’s been about 8 weeks now and despite resting, elevating, icing, x-rays and cortisone shots there’s no real improvement.  I can hobble around ok but too much of it puts me down for too long!  So now I’m off for an MRI this week…..some talk it may be a torn meniscus, or seriously torn tendons/ligiments that aren’t healing.  But, being laid up in this heat isn’t the worse thing.  I’ve read, crocheted, caught up on shows, organized, purged, worked on my BOS and also just seriously rested….all of that is a good thing.  See…..you can always find the positive in most situations ūüôā

So Mabon is here and it’s pretty shocking in my older age how fast that wheel turns.  Though we’re hot and dry, I can still see all the signs of Fall.  Mostly in the cooler nights, and mornings.  The critters are gathering like crazy.  Birds gather and feed at feeders.  Kids are settled back in school and all the after school and weekend sports are in full swing.  The Sun and Moon and have moved their positions in the sky.  The winds have changed. There’s some color on some trees.  This brings me hope that soon temps will drop and I’ll have those lovely crisp, Fall days and cool, inky dark nights. I can’t wait!

My Mabon Altar 2019

My coven isn’t gathering for this Sabbat but we will meet up soon just to visit with each other.  Too many of us couldn’t make it or had other plans.  So my celebration will be solitary.  I’ll greet the Sun which will start slowly spending less time with me each day.  I’ll greet the lovely Moon Goddess who will spend MORE time with me.  I’ll make an apple dessert and plan on a good healthy meal.  Altar work will recognize that it’s the Witch’s Thanksgiving.  I’ll thank Goddess for the blessings in my life, and despite my complaining about life right now, I am very blessed and know it.  As I come up on the 2nd anniversary of my daughter Sara’s passing, I also send my love to her in my altar work as well. Goddess carries those messages to her often. How do you celebrate this lovely Sabbat?

So I promised you all a recipe.  This is a new recipe to me I tried and it’s yum.  Mabon and September just scream apples and this fits the bill! It’s super moist and the streusel topping is to die for!

ApplePieBread

Apple Pie Streusel Bread

¬Ĺ cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
¬ľ cup buttermilk
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
¬Ĺ teaspoon salt
2 cups shredded, peeled apple (about 4 medium)
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
¬Ĺ cup raisins
1 Recipe Streusel-Nut Topping

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease the bottom and 1/2 inch up the sides of an 9x5x3-inch loaf pan; set aside.

In a large bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Beat in sugar until combined. Add buttermilk and baking powder; beat until combined. Add eggs and vanilla; beat until combined. Add flour and salt; beat until combined. Stir in apple, nuts, and raisins.

Spoon batter into prepared pan; spread evenly. Sprinkle Streusel-Nut Topping over batter. Bake for 60 to 65 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.

Cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan. Cool completely on wire rack. Wrap and store overnight before slicing.

*Um…I did not let it cool completely and did not wrap and store overnight before slicing lol.  It just was a bit soft and didn’t do a firm slice….but who cares!

Makes 1 loaf

Streusel-Nut Topping
¬ľ cup packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons butter
‚Öď cup chopped walnuts or pecan
In a small bowl, combine brown sugar and flour. Using a pastry blender, cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in walnuts or pecans.

I wish for each of you a beautiful, magickal Mabon.  May Autumn be in your heart if it hasn’t yet arrived in temperatures.  Fall WILL come.. even if it’s only a few of those glorious, crisp, blue sky, colorful days.  Relish them when they arrive!  Blessings to you all!

Autumn Fires

by Robert Louis Stevenson

In the other gardens
And all up the vale,
From the autumn bonfires
See the smoke trail!
Pleasant summer over
And all the summer flowers,
The red fire blazes,
The grey smoke towers.
Sing a song of seasons!
Something bright in all!
Flowers in the summer,
Fires in the fall! 

 

autumn fire

 

Blessings and Love,

Autumn ‚̧

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Altars, Autumn, Autumn Equinox, Bits of Magick, Gardens, Goddess, Gratitude, Holiday, Mabon, Magick, Moon, My Writing, Nature, Poem, Recipe from my Kitchen, recipes, Ritual, Sabbat, Seasons, Sun, Uncategorized, Witch

The Wheel Turns to Lughnasadh 2018….

 

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Merry Meet my friends!¬† I hope that this post finds you all well.¬† It’s been a HOT Summer here in Ohio…many days over 90*.¬† We had a good amount of rain for a while, but now we’ve been much more dry.¬† However, the forecast shows both some cooler temps and rain in the next week which is most welcome.¬† As much as I love gardening, the garden beds are looking poor from the heat and lack of rain and watering from a hose just doesn’t do the trick as much as natural water.¬† But tomatoes are ripened and sooo good, my herbs will give me a huge harvest and the bees, birds, and butterflies are happy.

I know I’ve been absent again‚Ķ..losing my daughter has just taken the wind out of my sails. But the writing bug has bitten me a bit so here I am. I’ve focused a lot on my home..doing necessary cleaning as we all do, but also purging every drawer, closet and cupboard, nook and cranny of unwanted, unneeded and unused items.¬† From books, to clothes, to even knick knacks etc.¬† It’s very freeing and I’m feeling my life falling into better organization and less stuff…which is a good thing.¬† I’m also finding comfort in my family and spending time with them as much as possible.¬† We all miss Sara so it helps us.¬† My grandkids are so busy and so fun and they bring me great joy as well. My daughter Kate and her husband include my husband and I on so many events in their life and we’re grateful for our time with them.¬† As they live so close, we see them often and it’s fabulous.

I dream of Autumn…as you all know, my favorite season.¬† But I will have to admit, losing Sara in October..my most favorite time of year…may temper my feelings on the month this year…..but not on the season.¬† I will always love Fall.¬† I’m not a fan of hot weather, and we’ve had a very hot season so far, so of course I’m perusing my Fall recipes, gathering fresh supplies for my pantry like flours and yeast for breads, fresh spices and seasonings, I’m freezing things like tomatoes and peaches, and chopped veggies like peppers. Casseroles will be made as well.¬† I often send food to my elder in-laws and my own parents and of course try to help any friends out from time to time.¬† I have a lovely neighbor who I often talk to over the fence, and we pass yummy things back and forth to each other as well. So having things in the pantry and readily available really makes that easier.¬† And of course, I’ve now discovered ordering groceries for delivery!¬† Or to pick up which makes me very happy!¬† And the farmer’s markets are in full swing which is wonderful.

Last week, my daughter and I were gifted with a big bushel of fresh Georgia peaches right off the truck.¬† We decided to make peach pie filling to freeze so we can make pie or cobbler or ice cream topping to enjoy in the Fall/Winter.¬† We came across a delicious recipe and got busy.¬† I decided to share it here as my most commented on posts are often the ones that contain recipes.¬† I hope you can get your hands on some peaches and give this a try.¬† You don’t have to “can” these….they can be frozen in freezer containers or even freezer bags.

Quick and Yummy Peach Pie Filling

*recipe is enough for one pie.

1 cup water

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 cup sugar

1/4 cup cornstarch

1/4 tsp vanilla

1/8 tsp almond extract

1/8 tsp ground cinnamon

4-5 large fresh peaches, peeled, pitted and sliced thin

In a large deep skillet over medium heat, stir together the water, lemon juice, sugar and cornstarch.  Cook until thickened and bubbly about 5 minutes.  The Cook another 3 minutes as it simmers, stirring constantly.

Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and almond extracts and cinnamon.

Add the peaches and mix until peaches are well coated and combined.

Cool filling to room temperature then use right away, store in refrigerator a few days or freeze in containers or bags.

This recipe is seriously yummy.¬† You’ll love it! So much better than the canned stuff!

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I love having prepared foods in the freezer to make my life a little easier, and cooking these foods with someone you love, sharing them, sharing recipes to try etc makes it even more great!

Lughnasadh comes very soon…August 1.¬† I love this Sabbat because it’s heralding the coming of Autumn, the harvest season and cooler weather…eventually.¬† It’s also all about good food, the harvest, grains and breads, herbs and oils…..it’s a fun time when it’s too hot to be outside, you can be cooking yummy things in the kitchen to share or to save for yourself later.¬† In my past blogs I’ve posted many recipes for herbed oils, breads, fresh veggie dishes and fruit desserts.¬† Be sure to check them out.

How has your summer been?¬† I’d love to hear.¬† How do you celebrate Lughnasadh?¬† My coven will be gathering just a couple days ahead.¬† I always look forward to that.¬† We’ve had some amazing Moons this Summer huh?¬† Part of what I DO love about Summer, is basking under the Moon without being cold, or needing shoes and coats etc.¬† lol.¬† Barefoot in the grass in my jammies works great this time of year.¬† New protections and witch jars are always put into place this time of year..between Solstice and Lughnasadh for me and my coven.¬† Again..it’s so easy and nice to do it in the warmth.¬† Often I’m accompanied by the sounds of the crickets, lightning bugs, bees buzzing, and soft winds rustling through the trees.¬† Those are the great things about Summer.

I’ll be back soon, I’ve been giving thought to recipes I can share here along with other ideas of things to talk about.¬† I want to thank so many of you for your kind words about the loss of my daughter.¬† It’s appreciated more than you know and touched my heart.¬† I do know she’s with me, always in my heart, and she’d be proud of how I’m doing my best to take care of me and my loved ones, remembering her in great love and being comforted by our memories of her.¬† I know I’m not alone in loss and life must move on.¬† Thank you again for the love and support.

Make your remaining Summer days fantastic!¬† And for those like me who love Autumn, it won’t be long!!¬† The old Wheel turns very fast!

“When summer opens, I see how fast it matures,

and fear it will be short; but after the heats of July and August,

I am reconciled, like one who has had his swing, to the cool of autumn.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Love and Blessings,

Autumn

 

 

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My heartbreak……

Merry Meet my friends.¬† I hope this post finds all of you and yours well and happy. I have been away from my blog and writing for many months.¬† To write why is very difficult but I felt it was time. I’m writing this as part of my healing process and hope that you all will understand my need to do so.

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This is my beautiful daughter Sara.¬† Sara passed away October 20, 2017.¬† She was my heart, my brave, kind, generous, darling oldest daughter.¬† Her death came unexpectedly and shockingly on the day it occurred.¬† Though we knew she’d lived beyond all expectancy, and over the last few years had become more frail….we were not prepared to lose her and it hurts beyond belief.

Let me tell you a little bit about her.  Sara was 35 when she passed away.  At the age of 6, we were in a terrible car accident that left her a quadriplegic, from the neck down and dependent the rest of her life on a ventilator to breathe 24/7.  She could only move her eyes and face.  We had to read her lips when she spoke.  She had multiple surgeries in the beginning to repair all the damage to her body, but her mind was sharp and intact.  We brought her home after several months in the hospital and there she stayed with the help of home nursing care, wonderful nurses (friends) over the years and with me, her constant caretaker.

Now you would think that sounds very sad and it was.¬† But over the 29 years she survived each day in that condition, she went to school graduating with honors.¬† We lived life as normally as possible.¬† She went everywhere with us.¬† Whatever it was, we found a way.¬† She’s been in the mountains and on beaches.¬† She shopped, traveled, saw movies and broadway shows, museums and bookstores.¬† She read with a passion. She was a collector of fairies, nutcrackers, keychains, and souvenirs.¬† She journaled her life every day.¬† She adored our pets, her niece and nephews, her sister, brother-in-law, extended family and myself and her dad.¬† She was kind, considerate, so very patient. She was a worrier about everyone but herself.¬† She was a Nature lover, a healer, a keeper of secrets and had a smile that lit up a room.¬† Everyone said she was an angel on Earth and I too believe that was true.

She was a one- of- a- kind spirit.¬† No one who knew her will every forget her.¬† Or the lessons she taught us.¬† As her mom, I couldn’t be more proud of the person she was.¬† And as her mom and full-time caretaker, my life has been drastically changed with her loss.¬† She is greatly missed, but my Path tells me she is with our Goddess, in Summerland, whole and happy and well again.¬† My other daughter Kate and I picture her with our rainbow pets, in her huge library comfortable and happy, having tea with our ancestors and waiting for us.¬† This comforts us greatly.¬† I wish you could have known her.¬† You would have loved her as we did.

So now, nearly 6 months later, life moves on.¬† I miss her constantly, light candles and incense every day for her.¬† I write notes to her and send them off with fire, smoke and ash.¬† Every holiday, birthday, family event without her is hard.¬† But we remember her and can smile now.¬† Talking about her is good for my family.¬† As Spring arrives (very slowly here in Ohio) I plan a memory garden for her as she loved the outdoors, watching the birds, butterflies, seeing the flowers grow. A dear friend is sending rose bushes in her honor, another a beautiful fairy wind chime, and I’ll plant her favorite flowers as well….sunflowers. Another friend has given us a gift card to plant a tree in her honor.¬† All these things will be done.

Her bedroom was such a place of loss and sadness.¬† But with help of family, we painstakingly went through her things.¬† We’ve kept all that meant so much to her…fairies, wall art, her books, bookmark collection, family pictures etc.¬† We saved her t-shirts to make into a quilt one day.¬† Family members and friends took small things to remind them of her and her journals will be with me until they pass to her sister one day.¬† I then turned her room into a beautiful library filled with the things she loved, and it’s become a place of comfort, serenity, and we know she’d have approved 100%

So now I’m learning my new “normal”.¬† I am doing okay as time marches on.¬† I’m about to turn 60 and because of being her 24/7 caretaker there were many things that I couldn’t do easily.¬† Even taking a walk, or planning an outing etc were difficult at times.¬† I would have kept doing that to my dying day…..but now that she has gone before me, I’m trying to find my way to care for myself for a while.¬† To do things I wasn’t able to do before.¬† To find “me”!¬† What do I enjoy?¬† What makes ME happy.¬† My hubby and I have plans for some travel I think.¬† I’m probably going to get a job at some point.¬† But for now, I heal, rest, do things that make me happy, work in my home, my journals, my planners, my crafts.¬† Dream of my garden beds, walks in the park, books to read and my Path to follow.¬† I do my best to remember Sara is always with me in Spirit and I know she’d want me to be happy and do for myself.¬† And of course, I have my other daughter, her husband and 3 beautiful grandchildren who need me, and my husband and extended family.¬† And I have my sisters in spirit, close friends who surround me with love and concern, and despite losing my darling girl, I know I’m blessed.

So, thank you for letting me talk about my girl.¬† Hold your loved ones close as you never know what a day will bring.¬† I’m hoping to write more here again. Perhaps some writing will help me to continue to heal and put one foot in front of the other.¬† Beltane comes soon… and Spring!

May Goddess bless each of you with great love in your lives.  The love, even when lost, remains forever.

Because-I-Knew-You-I-Have-Been-Changed-For-The-Good-Printable1

Blessings and Love,

Autumn

 

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Mabon Blessings 2017…and Recipes!

IMG_5679[559]Merry Meet friends and a very Blessed Mabon to you all!¬† I love that Autumn is finally here but….we are in the middle of a huge heatwave!¬† 90* all week….ugh!¬† That is most definitely not normal for Ohio.¬† Oh, we’ve had some hot September days for sure, but a 10 day streak of 80’s and 90’s is not normal..and not fun…and not conducive to Fall activities lol.¬† Oh well, I’m still working on some Fall cleaning so I’m finding ways to celebrate the season anyway.¬† This too shall pass as they say ūüôā

Hubby and I have started cleaning up our garden beds.¬† Cutting back spent flowers, harvesting the last of the tomatoes and herbs, and prepping soil where needed.¬† As I mentioned, I’m still working on organizing and purging drawers and closets.¬† I love getting rid of things no longer used. It just makes my house feel so much cleaner, allows air to move, and less clutter helps my mind as well.¬† I’ve decorated the house for the most part for Fall.¬† Still need mums and pumpkins but that will wait until weather cools down again.¬† And I LOVE going to the apple barn and the garden center for those things on a cool, blue sky day.¬† So I wait!

Today I started my day off with a walk in the grass around my yard, some time at my altar,¬† (which I’m sharing a picture of here)¬† lit candles and incense for healing and to honor the day, I plan on doing some baking later as well.¬† I like also to focus on balance in my Life on this day.¬† Mabon is the Autumn Equinox, when night and day are equal.¬† As I said in my last post, so many of us seem tilted, out of sorts, grumpy.¬† This has been me.¬† So tonight I will go under the Moon…the early crescent, and do a little ritual to help me find balance again in my life. I have found I’m starting to feel better simply by realizing I’m not feeling right and focusing on fixing it by meditating more, finding more quiet time, and practicing my Craft more!¬† It’s helped!

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My altar, since this picture was taken, has apples sliced with honey and bread added, and a few items from nature…acorns, leaves, pods etc.¬† I always try to add bits of nature of from my walks to my altars.¬† Brings gifts from Mother Earth indoors ūüôā

As promised, I’ve found a couple recipes to share with you.¬† One so simple and so good, the other…well it’s the best apple bread I’ve ever had and not overly hard to make either!

 

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Apple Crostini

3 apples, peeled, cored and chopped  (try Honeycrisp, Fuji or Granny Smith)

3 Tbs unsalted butter

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/2 tsp cinnamon

French bread, sliced and toasted

Brie wedges

fresh chopped rosemary for garnish if you have it.

Preheat oven to 350*  Combine apples, butter, brown sugar and cinnamon in a pot over low heat.  Simmer for 20-30 minutes, until apples are soft and mash easily, but leave some apple chunks.  Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temp.

Place French bread slices on parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Top each piece of bread with a small wedge of Brie cheese. Bake for about 5 mins to soften cheese.  The spoon apple mixture over cheese and sprinkle with rosemary.

Refrigerate any leftovers.

 

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Praline Apple Bread

1 1/2 cups chopped pecans, divided

8 oz sour cream

1 cup sugar

2 large eggs

1 Tb vanilla extract

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

2 tsp baking powder

1 1/2 tsp salt

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 1/2 cups finely chopped, peeled apples

Preheat oven to 350*  Toast 1/2 cup pecans in a single layer in a shallow pan 6-8 minutes, stirring occastionally; set aside.

Beat sour cream and next 3 ingredients at low speed with an electric mixer for 2 mins.  Stir together flour and next 3 ingredients.  Add to sour cream mixture, beating just until blended.  Stir in apples and the toasted pecans.

Spoon batter into a greased and floured 9″x5″ loaf pan.¬† Sprinkle with remaining cup of pecans and press into batter.

Bake at 350* for 1 hour.  Cover with foil the last 10-15 minutes to keep from burning pecans.  Cool in pan on wire rack for 10 minutes.

While cooling, bring butter and brown sugar to a boil in a heavy saucepan, stirring constantly for 1 minute.  Pour over bread and let cool.

*also delicious to eat warm.

Delicious!!

 

I hope that you all give these recipes a try.¬† Oh and the bread, make extra..it goes fast! Also great to treat a neighbor, friend or family member with a loaf.¬† You’ll get rave reviews!

I hope that however you celebrate today, you spend some time focusing on yourself.¬† Try to find balance in your Life, even if just for a day, but you should really try to make it a priority. It’s a crazy, busy world for most of us these days and we need to take care of ourselves.¬† Prepare yourself for the dark days of Fall and Winter that are coming..much as Persephone did as she journeyed to the Underworld.¬† Build yourself a cozy cocoon, find things to do for yourself…learn something new, read those books you’ve not had time for, start a new project, spend more time with loved ones, and definitely find more time to yourself! Pamper yourself with long bathes, good meals, walks in nature and time under Grandmother Moon!¬† You’ll feel soooo much better!¬† This is advice I need myself and intend on taking!

Blessed Mabon dear readers! May Goddess Bless you this beautiful Autumn season!

 

“the air is different today
The wind sings with a new tone
Sighing of changes coming
The harvest is gathered, a flower, a nut
Some mead, and bread
A candle and a prayer
Returning the fruits in thanksgiving
To the grove and receiving it‚Äôs blessing again‚ÄĚ
-Rhawk, Alban Elfed

 

Love and Blessings, Autumn

 

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I’m back…..And The Wheel turns to Mabon 2017…

Merry Meet my friends!¬† I’m back. ūüôā¬† I’ve been very neglectful of writing in my blog due to multwelcome septemberiple reasons.¬† None of which are important enough to talk about.¬† I think ultimately, I just lost interest.¬† I’ve been through a lot in the last year….health issues for my daughter and I, busy being a homekeeper, mom, grandmother.¬† You all know how you have to set priorities and my blog became much less of a priority.¬† But recently, the writing bug has bit me again so here I am.

As you all know, this time of year is my very favorite!¬† My energy, mentally and physically start increasing so much!¬† I thrive in the cooler weather, the change in the path of the Moon and Sun, in harvesting my herbs, in my kitchen, at my altar etc etc.¬† I’ve been doing my Fall cleaning…..purging, organizing, deep cleaning.¬† I’ve been perusing my Autumn recipes and cookbooks.¬† Pulling out warm throws and pillows, washing up sweaters, coats, flannel sheets…..getting ready for those cozy, cold, colorful days of Autumn.

First off, I must introduce you to a new family member….at least part time. lol.¬† My sister adopted a darling Maltese pup back in March.¬† However, she works out of town during the week.¬† So Yuki (Japanese for snow) has become my part time pup.¬† He’s a busy boy, adorable and we’ve become quite attached.¬† And, he keeps me busy too ūüôā

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One of the things that was going on with me is that I had another ankle surgery at the end of July. I was in a wheelchair for a few weeks, then crutches, and now a brace and I’m able to walk, though I’m uncomfortable still and it’ll take 3-6 months to be completely healed.¬† Because of this, my herb bed was very much neglected..the herbs left to their own natural growth as I couldn’t really get to them.¬† Yesterday, I finally went out there expecting to find lots of dead and overgrown herbs.¬† But to my great delight, I got a wonderful harvest this year.¬† They are now hanging, smelling delicious, in my kitchen. I’m so happy it worked out!

herb harvest 2017

I also had the great joy of going to my beautiful, magickal Smoky Mountains with my entire family last week.¬† A great way to end the Summer and welcome in Fall.¬† It was fabulous being with my hubby, daughters, son-in-law and grandkids and two dear friends there together.¬† We feasted, visited an animal rescue petting farm, went up the mountains for some fabulous time there and picture taking, and relaxing at the cabin where I was able to read, crochet, and rest my ankle.¬† It was a great time.¬† Here are some of the pictures I captured of the beauty of the mountains.¬† Those who know me and have read my blog for a while, know how much these mountains hole my heart ‚̧

 

Now that I’m home again, we’re experiencing Fall weather.¬† Days in the 60’s and low 70’s, and nights in the 50’s.¬† The Full Moon was brilliant, casting such a glow and so much energy.¬† We’ve had fires already, enjoying our new gas logs.¬† Burning wood was just getting too expensive and hard work stacking wood etc.¬† And frankly, I like the idea of saving trees!¬† The process of cutting back our garden beds is started too..flowers spent and dead, or overgrown and no longer pretty and vibrant.¬† There are leaves turning, Fall clothes, mums, pumpkins, and decorations in all the garden centers, craft stores and shops.¬† My mind turns to baking and cooking good hot meals..done with grilling and cold salads etc. The scent of spices, apples, pumpkins, nuts, breads etc are kicking in at my house lol.

My coven has added a new member and still gathering for Sabbats.¬† I’m still a ghost hunter and looking forward to another hunt soon.¬† I shared some recipes for a surprise this October I’ll talk about soon.¬† And I’m preparing for Mabon as are all my witchy friends and sisters.¬† I’ll be back soon with some recipes for Mabon, and some ideas on how I celebrate it.

I’m in the process too of putting out new wards and protections, burying witch bottles, setting up my Mabon altar and working on my BOS.¬† I have to say too…I’m lighting candles day and night and sending out protection with all I’ve got for those of you in the line of harm from fires, floods and hurricanes.¬† Our poor Mother Earth is being ravaged right now and yes, climate change is real!!¬† Many of my witchy friends are talking about feeling edgy, jittery, nervous and unsettled.¬† Many feeling something is coming..maybe something dark and bad.¬† I’m feeling this too.¬† With the chaos in the world right now, both politically, in the division of the people, nature releasing chaos etc…..I hope that those who pray are doing that.¬† I send out my own prayers of safety and love to those in need.¬† It’s all we can do but ride the ride and do our best not to add to it in a negative way.¬† Keep being kind to others, caring for others and for our Mother Earth.¬† I’m speaking to the choir here because I now that you all feel as I do.¬† Whatever is coming….we have support for each other.

In the meantime, thank you for those who let me know you missed my writing.  And thank you to my loyal readers who have continued to visit here.  I appreciate it and will vow to get back to my writings.  May Goddess bless you and keep you safe and give you comfort in the tumultuous days.

 

 
“Spring scarce had greener fields to show than these
Of mid September; through the still warm noon
The rivulets ripple forth a gladder tune
Than ever in the summer; from the trees
Dusk-green, and murmuring inward melodies,
No leaf drops yet; only our evenings swoon
In pallid skies more suddenly, and the moon
Finds motionless white mists out on the leas.”
–¬† Edward Dowden, In September

 

Blessings and Love,

Autumn

*Pictures are my own.

 

 

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Blessed Samhain 2016….and recipes!

“I see the turning of a leaf dancing in the autumn sun,

and brilliant shades of crimson glowing when a day is done

-Hazelmarie Mattie Elliott-

A-BLessed-Samhain-To-You

Merry Morning and Blessed Samhain my friends! ¬†The glorious day is finally here! The Witch’s favorite Sabbat! ¬†Our New Year! ¬†Here in Ohio it’s a cool, blue sky, sunny day. ¬†We’ve had some overly warm days here lately…too warm in the upper 70’s for my taste, but today it feels like Fall again. ¬†The skies are inky black as we’re in our New Moon which adds magick to our new year and new beginnings! ¬†Winds are brisk and leaves are falling fast, chipmunks and squirrels gather food for the winter, birds are busy at the feeders, pumpkins are grinning from porches ¬†and children ready their costumes for trick or treat! ¬†The veil thins and there is a mystical feel to the Air! Autumn is in full glory!

My coven gathered Saturday night. ¬†We had soups, breads and desserts. As it was warm, we spent time outside. ¬†A few of our sisters didn’t make it this year and the rest of us were more quiet and subdued. Perhaps the thinning veil making us not feel up to par, tired and moody I think. ¬†Speaking for myself, that was the case. ¬†How does the thinning veil affect you? ¬†I’ve had times of high energy, and times of melancholy and low energy too. ¬†Today, I feel great!

I’m harvesting the last of my herbs today. Then tonight is our Beggar’s Night. ¬†This year we’ll be home passing out candy as we spent time with my grandkids yesterday. ¬†Keeping dinner simple with soup and sandwiches. ¬†I’m also burying new witch’s protection bottles, making an offering to Mother Earth and tonight a fire and spending time with my ancestors. I am a journaler and I’ve been journaling my thoughts and wishes for a wonderful new year to come. ¬†I look back on this last year with fondness and feelings of how blessed I am. and forward with the same. ¬†What will you be pleased about in your past year

and what changes will you make in this next year to improve on it?  These are the things I think about today.

I promised some recipes and better late than never.  So here a few new ones!

cider

Samhain Spiced Cider

1/4 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon whole allspice

1 teaspoon whole cloves

1 cinnamon stick

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 pinch ground nutmeg

1 large orange, quartered with peel

2 quarts apple cider

*use a gallon of cider and double the rest!

Place in a dutch oven on the stove on low heat or a slow cooker on low all day! So yummy!  I made this for my coven saturday night and they loved it!

pumpkin soup

Butternut Squash Soup

1 Tb butter

1 Tb olive oil

3/4 cup chopped onion

3/4 cup chopped carrot

2 garlic cloves, minced

4-5 cups cubed, peeled butternut squash

4 1/2 cups chicken stock

1 tsp dried sage

3/4 tsp salt

pepper to taste

a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

In a large saucepan, heat butter and oil over medium heat.  Add onion and carrot; cook and stir until tender.  Add garlic and cook one minute longer.

Stir in squash, stock, sage, salt and pepper and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, simmer, covered 20 minutes or until squash is tender.  Remove from heat; cool slightly.

Process in a blender until smooth.  Serves 6

Apple Caramel Cheesecake Bars

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

3/4 cup cold butter, cubed

2 pkgs (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened

1/2 cup plus 2 Tb sugar, divided

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 large eggs, slightly beaten

3 medium tart apples, peeled and finely chopped

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

Streusel topping

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

3/4 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup quick cooking oats

1/3 cup cold butter, cubed

1/3 cup hot caramel ice cream topping

Preheat oven to 350*. ¬†In a small bowl, combine the flour and brown sugar; cut in butter until crumbly. ¬†Press into a well-greased 13×9 inch baking pan. ¬†Bake 15-18 minutes or until lightly browned.

In a large bowl, beat cream cheese, 1/2 cup sugar and vanilla until smooth.  Add eggs; beat on low speed just until combined. Spread over baked crust.

In a small bowl, toss apples with cinnamon, nutmeg and remaining sugar; spoon over cream cheese layer.  In another bowl, mis streusel topping until crumbly.  Sprinkle over apple layer.

Bake 25-30 minutes or until filling is set.  Drizzle with caramel topping; cool in pan on a wire rack for 1 hour.  Refrigerate for 2 hours at least.  Cut into bars and serve.

Yummy…I love Autumn baking especially. ¬†Don’t you?

I want to wish you all a very Blessed Samhain.  May your ancestors smile upon you and impart words of wisdom, joy and a sense of peacefulness to you in the coming year.  Goddess Bless you all!

“Between the heavens and the earth
The way now opens to bring forth
The Hosts of those who went on before;
Hail! We see them now come through the Open Door.

Now the veils of worlds are thin;
To move out you must move in.
Let the Balefires now be made,
Mine the spark within them laid.

Move beyond the fiery screen,
Between the seen and the unseen;
Shed your anger and your fear,
Live anew in a new year!”
– Lore of the Door

Blessings and Love,

Autumn

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The Wheel Turns to Samhain 2016…..

A brooding calm in all the air,
A dreamy quiet everywhere…
A golden glow to light the day
That fades in purple mists away‚ÄĒ
This soothing calm, this presence bright,
October’s sweet and mellow light.
~Phebe A. Holder, “A Song of October,”

samhain12

Merry Meet my friends! ¬†How is your Autumn going so far? ¬†Autumn weather has finally arrived here in Ohio in the last week or so, and it’s been re-vitalizing, beautiful and wonderful! ¬†As you all know….my favorite time of year and I seem to just wake up!

I apologize again for a longer -than- usual absence. ¬†My life is really busy these days and I’ve had to prioritize what I can get done. ¬†As much as I love to write, and I do write in my journals etc, I just had to put my blog aside…again. ¬†Between my in-laws moving here, losing my only day nurse that helps me with my daughter, a trip to Sleepy Hollow (which was fabulous and I’ll write about that trip here in a day or two) plus preparing the house for Autumn/Winter, and the usual every day stuff like family, time with my grandkids etc etc. ¬†Please know, I know you ALL are just as busy….but I’m explaining why I’m not writing here as much.

Having said that all, Samhain is coming fast and I wanted to be here with you all to show my enjoyment of this most special Sabbat time of year! ¬†As our summer seemed to linger longer than usual this year, I’m busily jarring dried herbs from earlier in the year, and making room for the last harvest of herbs to hang and dry. ¬†My herbs are still thriving and huge so my last harvest will be abundant! ¬†Hubby and I have been busy cleaning up the garden beds, cutting back, protecting, and preparing the beds for next Spring. Also, things in the house, like washing rugs, curtains, windows, having furnace inspected, fireplace cleaned and a cord of wood ordered so we are ready for the dark months! ¬†Despite all the work, I so love this time of year and take the time for walks, Moon basking, apple and pumpkin baking, and a little shopping for new jackets, and sweaters etc. ¬†I’ve also been busy crocheting scarves and blankets which I find incredibly Zen. ¬†What are you doing to prepare for the dark time of the year?

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The veil is thinning and all Witches can feel it. ¬†My mind often goes to my loved ones who have passed onto the other side of the veil. ¬†I can’t bake without thinking of my grandmother, hear a song on the radio that reminds me of a good friend, or visit the cemetaries, adrift in falling leaves to feel close to those who are still with us in mind and spirit. Witches prepare their altars to honor their ancestors and loved ones during this most magickal season. ¬†But we also look back on the last year, as Samhain is our new year after all. ¬†What worked for us, what didn’t, what we keep and what we throw away/let go. ¬†We make plans for our New Year, knowing that we have the dark time of the year coming, when we may be a little less busy, have more time to reflect by fires, read, organize, dream, learn, and decide what we may do to improve constantly on our lives, our minds, our bodies and spirits.

My coven will gather on the 29th for soups, breads, desserts and a fire. ¬†A ritual to honor the New Year and our ancestors. ¬†It’s a wonderful time of wearing our witchiest garb, and while fun, we are also very dedicated to the night…the time…the veil…..the looking forward and backward…helping each other if needed. ¬†We all celebrate solitarily as well….but our combined energies make it an amazing night!

I’m a true believer in constantly learning and expanding my knowledge base. ¬†So I’ve begun to think about what books I’d like to read over the Winter. ¬†What are some of your favorite witchy books, or learning books you’ve read lately? ¬†I’d love some suggestions! ¬†I have some books on tarot, crystals, reiki, certain goddesses etc I’ll be reading…along with good fiction of course! ¬†Any suggestions most appreciated as I’m always looking for something I don’t know about ūüôā

October is crisp days and cool nights,

a time to curl up around the dancing flames

and sink into a good book.

~John Sinor (1930‚Äď1996), in San Diego Union-Tribune

I’m off to enjoy a bit of time outside today…perhaps starting to harvest those herbs, or just taking a walk. ¬†I’ll be back in the next day or two with a post about that trip to Sleepy Hollow and as always, some wonderful recipes for Samhain. ¬†Also, a bit of news I should be ready to talk about in the next week. ¬†In the meantime, It’s Autumn!! ¬† That wonderful blue sky, sunny days and crisp nights, woodsmoke and falling leaves, sweaters and scarves, pumpkins and apples, witches and black cats, all things spooky and wonderful, Time of year!! ¬†Autumn passes so fast…enjoy every beautiful moment!!

Blessings and Love,

Autumn

 

 

 

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