Tag Archives: Samhain

The Wheel Turns to Samhain 2012………

Merry Meet friends.   Autumn is in full-blown, beautiful color here in Ohio!  We’ve had a lovely Fall so far.  Cool and Sunny and breezy with crisp nights.  It’s been many days of sweater weather and nights of fires in the fireplaces or outdoor firepits.  I was afraid with the very hot and dry Summer we had..that the leaves would just turn brown and fall off the trees but that is not the case at all.  The color is brilliant!  My Sugar Maple trees should give you a hint of the beauty here 🙂

A lot of my Witchy friends are talking about feeling blue, lost, unsettled.  That something is “coming or happening”.  I too feel this way at times right now.  The veil is thinning, the ancestors are moving closer to be with us for Samhain night, the most magickal energy is building and spreading.  All we can do is hold on to our brooms, wands, staffs and pointy hats and ride it out!  Ground and Center as much as possible.  Smudge your home, meditate, burn incense and candles.  Talk to each other…support is good.  I for one think it will be a most amazing night..full of magick and positivity!

I’ll be back soon with something pretty cool 🙂   Also Samhain recipes and some other things.   Have a wonderful weekend…ground and center when you need to…  The Dark of the Moon and the New Moon are upon us..use it to your advantage!  Have a wonderful weekend!

Samhain….A Peace Blessing

 by Lady Abigail

 

Witches dance the circle round,

In magickal places we shall be found.

 

Within this blessed and sacred night,

Spells are cast in burning fire light.

 

Under the radiant moon so pale,

We welcome those from within the veil.

 

Thy mysteries we call to embark,

No fear have we of what hides in the dark.

 

We summon every Witch to heed this call,

That we shall come together one and all.

 

Let us stand proudly hand in hand,

Blending our energies across the land.

 

To invoke as one this Samhain spell,

At the ringing of Witching hour bell.

 

In unity we call unto this spells rite,

Peace for all lands come to our sight.

 

So this the summon, in our Witches plea,

Peace for all, So mote it shall be.

Love and Blessings, Autumn

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Filed under Autumn, Holiday, New Moons, Photography, Poem, Samhain, Seasons

October 2012……..

Radiant joy is everywhere.
Spirits in tune to the spicy air,
Thrill in the glory of each day.
Life’s worth living when we say, October!”
– Joseph Pullman Porter

Merry Meet my friends!   Happy October!!!   October..what a beautiful Month..my favorite..as those of you who know me..know 🙂    October..the Season of the Witch!!

It was a wonderful Mabon at my house and the Harvest Moon has been Full, and bright  and big and filled with energy and magick!  Tonight is the first night I haven’t been able to see Her…it has been raining gently for a few hours now. A lovely Autumn rain!

I’m sitting in my favorite chair..a glass of Witch’s Brew spiced wine in my hand, a fire in the fireplace, listening to music and relaxing.  I am in Bliss with the fact that my favorite time of year is here…Autumn…in all her splendor.

October…immediately brings to mind woodsmoke and fires, crisp air nights and blue sky days, mums, pumpkins and the last of our garden’s bounty, sweaters, colorful leaves falling in brisk, cool air.  Birds flocking and critters gathering, apple pickin and eatin and bakin, warm spiced cider, raking and burning leaves, black cats and ghostie spirits and trick or treats.  Halloween parties, Ancestor altars, and Dumb Suppers.  I could go on and on with the things that bring me great Joy this time of year!

My Witchy friends are all happy right along with me.…planning for the Witch’s greatest night of the Year….Samhain!  Our New Year!!  A Most glorious, wondrous, magickal, mysterious Night!  I can’t wait!!!

I look forward to sharing this wonderful Season with you all!

“Listen! the wind is rising,
and the air is wild with leaves,
We have had our summer evenings,
now for October eves!”
Humbert Wolfe

Blessings for a beautiful Fall!!!

Love and Light, Autumn

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Filed under Autumn, Full Moons, My Favorite Things, Quote, Samhain, Seasons

My Dumb Supper Table…..

Merry Meet my friends and Blessed Samhain!  I hope that all of you had a wonderful Sabbat, I know I did.  From the beautiful weather, to seeing my grandkids in their adorable costumes, to a beautiful ritual at my altar last night.  My daughter Kate and her hubby Matt,  had my hubby Jim,  brother Chris, daughter Sara and I over for a chili dinner.  Chili and cornbread muffins were enjoyed and I took a yummy Peanut Butter Cake.   The weather was really perfect…cool and but not too cold and clear skies with a gorgeous crescent Moon!  Just a magickal evening in every way.

When I got home, I spent time at my altar, doing the ritual I wrote in my last post.  I also scryed for a while with wonderful results and then drew a 3 card tarot layout.  I learned alot from the cards and they were very meaningful to what is going on in my life right now.  Then I went out and spent some time with the Moon and went to bed very happy and contented. 

Tonight, I had my Dumb Supper and though the only participants were my daughter and I (could not get the guys to join in LOL) …we enjoyed the quiet and the candlelight and felt that we had company indeed.  I kept my table a simple black and white theme and I was sooo pleased with how it came out.

 

Ok..I’ll talk a little about what I did…I set my whole table..though Sara and I were the only ones who sat at the table..that left 4 seats for anyone who wanted to come join us 🙂  (Ok I really thought my hubby and brother would join us…but they were wrapped up in a show LOL) !  I  brought in lots of candles and white pumpkins and  crystal glassware and a touch of silver.  The silver julep cups hold fresh cut rosemary from my own garden (still hanging in there despite several frosty mornings! )  It smelled wonderful!  Keep in mind that rosemary represents remembrance….perfect for my ancestors.  The rosemary will dry great in those cups too, then I’ll put the stalks in my BOS..as a remembrance for myself. 

My table dark and candlelit!

There was wine for everyone and I put out my peanut butter cake for dessert.  Now this peanut butter cake is a huge hit with my family and friends who have had it and it was requested for Samhain ..so of course, I made it.  Thought you all might like the recipe??  so here it is:

Autumn’s Peanut Butter Cake

*Be sure and read all the way thru it…the ingredients are spread thruout the recipe 

 Mix in a large bowl:

2 cups sugar

2 cups flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

Set aside.   In a med saucepan, bring to a boil:

1 cup water

1 cup peanut butter

1 stick butter

Stir often..when it comes to a boil remove from heat and add to the dry mixture and mix well with a spoon. 

Then stir in:

2 eggs

1/2 cup milk

1 tsp vanilla

Blend well.  Pour into a greased jelly roll pan.  Bake at 375* for 20 mins or until golden brown.

While cake is baking:

Bring to a boil in the same saucepan:

1 stick butter

1/3 cup milk

Remove from heat and stir in:

1/2 cup peanut butter

1 lb. confectioners sugar 

*Hint–add the peanut butter first, when melted well, stir in the sugar 1/2 at a time, to keep frosting from getting lumpy!

Pour over warm cake and spread evenly. 

This cake is sort of like the Texas Chocolate cake..dense and almost like a brownie ..and YUMMY!

If you’ve never done a Dumb Supper before..put it on your “Must Do” list for next year..it is really a very special thing and most magickal.  Remember as I posted before, you want a  dark room, lots of candles and NO talking! Now I’ve heard several say that with kids the silence would be impossible..of course!  But have it anyway..your ancestors will love spending time with the kids too!  Listen and Feel for them to come to you..give them the respect they deserve.  When we felt it was time, we said out-loud our messages for our loved ones who had passed on ..for those we knew and loved and miss to this day.   

“In all of us there is a hunger, marrow deep, to know our heritage – to know who we are

 and where we came from. Without this enriching knowledge, there is a hollow yearning. 

 No matter what our attainments in life, ther is still a vacuum,

                                an emptiness, and the most disquieting loneliness.”                           

 By Alex Haley

I believe there is an inherent wisdom and knowledge within that is passed down to us in our DNA.  That we literally  carry a bit of what they did and what they knew deep in our psyche. We are connected by the threads of love, life, time and the Universe.  So, for me, this meaningful ritual is very important!

So I say again, Blessed Samhain to you all! 

Blessings and Love, Autumn

Sources: me! 🙂 

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Filed under Family, My Writing, Quote, Ritual, Samhain

My Samhain Altar and Ritual 2011…….

Merry Meet my friends!  Wow, just 3 nights until Samhain!  This month has gone by way too fast for me.  I love October so much, my favorite month, and I have kept myself busy enjoying every minute of every day.  We have had a few rainy days so colorful leaves are rapidly falling off the trees.  We’ve had some frosty mornings so the last of the summer flowers and herbs have gone away til next Spring.  My mums are fully bloomed and gorgeous.  The bird feeders are more active, squirrels and chipmunks and other furry creatures are scurrying to gather quicker.  Some of my friends have already experienced snow where they live! 

I can’t wait to see my grandkids in their costumes on Samhain evening.  We’ll be having dinner at my daughter’s house and hubby and I, will pass out candy while they take my grandkids out to collect some candy 🙂  Chili, cornbread and cherry crisp will be on the menu…quick and easy for such a busy day.  Then I’ll be home to do my ritual I have written here, and some time outside by the bonfire in my circle in the woods.  I’ve decided to do my Dumb Supper on Sunday evening as Samhain night will be so busy.  I hope to post some pics of the table set for it on my wordless wednesday blog post next week.  I think the table will look fantastic and I’m quite sure my grandmother will come to visit 🙂

I have spent some time the last couple of nights writing this ritual.  Please remember, this is just what I’m going to  do.  It may not be at all what YOU are thinking of doing or saying or using.  That’s just fine…make it yours and by all means, do it your way.  Your magick is your own after all!

First, here are some pictures of my Samhain altar.  It is to honor my ancestors and I think it’s one of my favorite altars I’ve done.  I think the pics speak for themselves of what I used and why.

Samhain Ritual to Honor Your Ancestors

By Autumn Earthsong

 Have your altar decorated however you like.  You can get some ideas from the pictures on my altar above.  A couple things you must have….. a God and Goddess candle and pictures or keepsakes from your ancestors and loved ones. I also highly recommend you have LOTS of candles on your altar…I set several votives to lighten my altar up bright!

Cast your circle in whatever way you do.  Ground and Center when you are ready.  If you are using elemental representatives, light the fire candle and the incense.   Light the Goddess candle and say ….

 “Dark Mother, Goddess of Death and Rebirth, Ruler of the night,  assist me in my magickal rite.  Lift the Veil between the worlds, as this time-out-of-time begins and as the barrier thins.  I ask for your blessing and guidance as I commune with my ancestors this Samhain night.”

Light the God candle and say…..

 “Dark Father, aged Consort of the Crone, Lord of the Underworld,  I ask for your blessing and favor on this magickal night, during this time-out-of-time, and during this rite.  Keep safe my ancestors as they come to me, from the other side of the Veil, for me to hear and see.” 

 Call the elements by saying what you usually do or something like this:

Earth and Air; Fire and Water
Guard and guide your loving daughter
I call on you this Samhain night,
Assist me in my sacred rite.  Sit quiet for awhile and wait for your ancestors to come..don’t forget
 your pets who have passed too….
 Quiet your mind and body and you will know when they are with you.
 When you know they are, say something like this:

    

“On this Samhain night the Veil has thinned


and the Spirits of my loved ones are here once again.

For my ancestors and loved ones who have gone on before me

I remember you with great love, in my heart you’ll always be.

Guide me and protect me, until one day I’m with you

I honor you every day, in everything I do.”

Blessed be! Blessed be!

 Now would be the time to do some divination with your tarot cards or runes, or do some scrying and see if any Spirits have anything to show you.  Enjoy some apple cider or wine and a “cake”.  When you are ready start to take down your circle by thanking those who came to you:

 “Dearest Ancestors thank you for joining me this night. I will never forget what you mean to me as you retreat once more beyond the Veil. For now, Merry Part.” 

 Release the elements as you usually do.
 Say Thank you and good-bye to the Goddess and God however you like.
 Snuff out candles, take down your circle, and make an offering to Mother Earth, outside, 
by leaving a bit of cake and wine.  Spend some time by a fire and relax.  You may feel
 a bit tired after having the Spirits of your ancestors with you on the glorious Samhain night!
 Samhain night, the Witch's New Year! Celebrate it! I found this poem a year or so ago,
 and have since connected with the author on facebook. I'd like to post it here for
 you all to enjoy! It makes me thrill to my witchiness :) I wish all of you a very Blessed Samhain!  

 

The wheel has turned, the wheel of light

 stoke the fire and make it bright

Samhain call, Samhain come

 feel the rhythm , hear the drum

The veil it thins, the veil it shrouds

 the spirits rise upon darkened cloud

The time of orange , time of black

 time to move forward and not look back

Pumpkin lit , with candle burn

 away dark spirits this guardian turns

Night of the ancients, night of the olds

 remembered in stories now to be told

The Crone doth rise upon this night

 look into the shadows without a fright

Rituals and rites across the lands

 empowers the soul where they stand

 Trick or treat, heal or curse ,

 the hand should be crossed from a silver purse

The Wheel begins its time anew,

 the release of the old for the knowledgeable few

The time to scry to see the path we must take

 and of the choices we need to make

She comes to us in many guises

 the Crow and the owl her favourite disguises

The Earth gives us her last to give

 the bountiful harvest so we can live

We feast and drink in a sacred space

 behind samhain masks to hide our face

Through darkened day and moonlight night

 All hallows Eve is a beautiful sight!

(C) Copyright Phiona Hutton July 2010

 

 
Blessings and Love, Autumn 
PS..I have NO IDEA why this post came out all weird..it obviously had the margins
set wrong..and I have NO IDEA how to fix it LOL...sorry..it's still readable I think :)

  

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Altars, Autumn, God, Goddess, Photography, Poem, Ritual, Samhain

Samhain Recipes……..

Merry Meet my friends!  I’m sitting here with candles lit, listening to a heavy October evening rain and enjoying and Irish Cream!  I am just loving this Autumn!  October has just been beautiful..even a rainy night just soothes my soul.  I have spent the day cooking, spent some time with my daughters and grandkids, and am just relaxed and content tonight 🙂

I have been busy gathering recipes for about a week now to post here on my blog for you all.  I can vouch for several of these recipes as I’ve made them or made them often!  The potato soup picture and the apple pie pictures are from my own kitchen, my own camera and what I spent the day making today! 🙂  You will love both of them..I promise!

Ok…here we go…I always start with the magickal recipes first:

Samhain Oil Blend

*add to 1/8 cup base oil of your choice

3 drops Rosemary

 3 drops Pine

 3 drops Bay

 3 drops Apple

 2 drops Patchouli

Samhain Spirit Incense

2 parts Cinnamon

1 part ground cloves

1 part Dragon’s Blood resin

1 part Hyssop

1 part Patchouli

2 parts Rosemary

1 part Sage

A dash of sea salt

*This is a personal favorite of mine..and I always make a large amount!  If you can’t find Hyssop..just leave it out or substitute for something else….Try allspice or Star anise to keep with the spicy scent..or add pine or cedar!

 

  “We should look for someone to eat and drink WITH

 before looking for something to eat and drink”  

~Epicurus

 

Apricot- Apple Cider

 1 gal apple cider

1 (11.5oz) can apricot nectar

2 cups sugar

2 cups orange juice

¾ cup lemon juice

4 (3in) long cinnamon sticks

2 tsps ground allspice

1 tsp ground cloves

½ tsp ground nutmeg

 Bring all ingredients to a boil in a Dutch oven; reduce heat, and simmer 10 mins.  Remove cinnamon sticks and serve Hot!  (Makes 21 cups)

 

Cranberry- Brie Cheese Spread

 1 (15 oz) round Brie

1 (16 oz) can whole-berry cranberry sauce

¼ cup firmly packed brown sugar

2 Tb. Spiced rum (or orange juice)

½ tsp ground nutmeg

¼ cup chopped pecans, toasted

 Trim the rind from top of Brie, leaving a 1/3 inch border on top.  Place Brie on a baking sheet

Stir together cranberry sauce and next 3 ingredients; spread mixture evenly over top of Brie.  Sprinkle evenly with pecans.

 Bake at 500* for 5 mins.  Serve with assorted crackers, apple and pear slices.

 

Spicy October Morning Pumpkin Bread

3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1-1/3 cups packed brown sugar
3/4 cup  milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin
Cooking spray
1/3 cup chopped walnuts

 
Preheat oven to 350º.

 Combine flour and the next 7 ingredients (flour through cloves) in a large bowl; make a well in center of mixture. Combine sugar and the next 5 ingredients (sugar through pumpkin) in a bowl, and stir well with a whisk until smooth. Add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist.

Spoon batter into 2 (8 x 4-inch) loaf pans coated with cooking spray, and sprinkle with walnuts. Bake at 350º for 1 hour or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool loaves in pans 10 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pans. sprinkle a little natural sugar on the top. Cool loaves completely.

 

Sweet Potato Biscuits

 1 large sweet potato

2 cups self rising flour

¼ cup sugar

3 Tbs shortening

2 Tbs butter, cold and cut up

1/3 cup milk

 Bake sweet potato at 350* for 1 hour or until tender; cool slightly.  Peel and mash; and cool.

 Combine flour and sugar in a medium bowl. Cut shortening and butter into flour mixture with a pastry blender until crumbly; add mashed sweet potato and milk, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened. 

 Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead 3 to 4 times.  Roll dough to ½ inch thickness; cut with a 2 inch biscuit cutter.  Place on a lightly greased baking sheet.

 Bake at 400* for 15 mins or until golden brown. 

 *These are great with my potato soup!  You can slice them, add country ham and honey and they make delicious sandwiches on their own or with the soup!

 

 

Kate’s Slow Cooker Bacon- Potato Soup

 *Got this from my daughter and it’s probably one of the best and easy soups I’ve had!

 1 (5 lb bag) potatoes..cut into small cubes

1 lb bacon, cooked and crumbled.  ½ goes in the slow cooker, ½ save as a topper

3 (14.5oz) cans chicken broth

1 can cream of chicken soup

8 oz sour cream

 

Put all ingredients in crockpot..cook for 8-10 hours on low.

*Great topped with shredded cheddar cheese, bacon crumbles and crackers!

 

Autumn Cranberry Chicken

*Slow Cooker

4 boneless skinless chicken breast

1 (16oz) can whole-berry cranberry sauce

1 cup Russian salad dressing

1.35oz pkg onion soup mix

Cooked rice

Place chicken in the slow cooker, cutting pieces in half if desired.  Combine remaining ingredients except rice; spoon over chicken.  Cover and cook on low for 6 hours.  Serve over cooked rice.  Serves 4

 

 

Sweet Apple Acorn Squash

2 acorn squash, halved and seeded

2 apples, peeled, cored and chopped

3 Tbs packed brown sugar

3 Tbs chopped pecans

1 tsp all-purpose flour

¼ tsp cinnamon

2 Tbs butter, softened

 Place acorn squash halves cut side down in a greased 13” x 9” baking pan.  Bake at 350* for 30 mins.  Combine remaining ingredients.  Turn squash over and fill with apple mixture.  Bake, uncovered, for another 15-30 mins until squash is soft when pierced with a fork.  Serves 4.

 

Ok..so Halloween is after all about the “sweet” treats too…so these are some favorite recipes just for the sweet toothed!

 

 

Halloween Poke Cake

 1 package (18-1/4 ounces) fudge marble cake mix

2 packages (3 ounces each) orange gelatin

1 cup boiling water

1/2 cup cold water

1/2 cup butter, softened

3-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar

1/3 cup baking cocoa

1/4 cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

12 to 15 candy pumpkins

 Prepare and bake cake according to package directions, using a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan. Cool on a wire rack for 1 hour.

In a small bowl, dissolve gelatin in boiling water; stir in cold water. With a meat fork or wooden skewer, poke holes in cake about 2 in. apart. Slowly pour gelatin over cake. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours.

For frosting, in a small bowl, cream butter until fluffy. Beat in the confectioners’ sugar, cocoa, milk and vanilla until smooth. Spread over cake; top with candy pumpkins. Cover and refrigerate until serving. Makes 12-15 servings.

 

 

Spice Cookies with Pumpkin Dip

1-1/2 cups butter, softened

2 cup sugar

2 eggs

1/2 cup molasses

4 cups all-purpose flour

4 teaspoons baking soda

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon each ground ginger and cloves

1 teaspoon salt

 PUMPKIN DIP:

 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened

2 cups pumpkin pie filling

2 cups confectioners’ sugar

1/2 to 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

 For Cookies:

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and molasses. Combine the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and salt; add to creamed mixture and mix well. Chill overnight.

Shape into 1/2-in. balls; roll in sugar. Place 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 375° for 6 minutes or until edges begin to brown. Cool for 2 minutes before removing to a wire rack.

For Dip:

 Beat cream cheese in a large bowl until smooth. Beat in pumpkin pie filling. Add the sugar, cinnamon and ginger and mix well. Serve with cookies. Store leftover dip in the refrigerator.

Makes about 20 dozen cookies and  3 cups of dip.

 

Autumn’s Amish Apple Pie

Ok, those of you who are my facebook friends, Know that I think this is the best apple pie I’ve ever had! Try it..let me know what you think!!

 Make Streusel topping:

 1/3 cup sugar

¼ cup brown sugar

½ cup plus 2 Tb all purpose flour

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg

Speck of salt

½ cup (1 stick) butter, cold

½ cup coarsely chopped English walnuts

 In a food processor bowl, mix the first 6 ingredients.  Add the butter and process until the mixture is crumbly; it should still have a dry look to it..don’t overprocess.  Stir in nuts and set aside.

 

 Apple filling:

 4 large apples like Granny Smith, McIntosh or Cortlands (which I love!)

1 cup sugar

3 Tbs all purpose flour

½ tsp ground cinnamon

1 egg

1 cup heavy whipping cream

1 tsp vanilla

 Preheat oven to 350*F.  Peel, core and thinly slice the apples;  there should be 4 cups.  Place the apples in the pie shell.  In a small bowl, mix sugar, flour, and cinnamon.  Set aside.  Beat the egg in a medium bowl, and add the cream and vanilla.  Add the sugar mixture to the egg mixture and blend.   Pour over the apples.  Bake for 1 hour in the lower 1/3 of the oven.  After 20 mins of baking, sprinkle the streusel over the top of the apples and continue baking approximately 40 mins longer, or until the top puffs and is golden brown.

 Crust:

 Ok..you can of course just buy a pie crust ready made and there is nothing wrong with that at all.

 However…I have a great recipe for a Pat-in-the-Pan crust that is easy and awesome!  It will fit an 8” or 9” pie pan.   You’ll love it!!  It is flaky and delicious!

(Oh this is can only be used for a single crust pie…you can’t double it and try to roll it out for a top crust…its too soft to do that)

 2 cups all purpose flour

2 tsps sugar

1 tsp salt

2/3 cup vegetable oil

3 Tbs cold milk

 Place the flour, sugar and salt in the pie pan and mix with your fingers until well blended.  In a measuring cup, combine the oil and milk and beat with a fork until creamy.  Pour all at once over the flour mixture is completely moistened.  Pat the dough with your fingers, first up the sides of the plate, then across the bottom.  Flute the edges.  It’s now ready to be filled with the apples!

 

 

 

 

A couple of hints..I make the crust first..then put it in the fridge til I have the apples ready to fill it..keeps it from getting too wet.  I halved the nutmeg for myself..but you can put in up to 1 tsp of nutmeg if you love it!…it’ll be strong but great!  This pie can be known to run over the edges of the pie pan..so I always put them on a cookie sheet with some foil on it ..just in case!  You will love this pie..I promise..actually..I’m having a piece right now!! :))

 

I hope that you all enjoy All the recipes.  For me, Autumn and Winter are the best times of the year for cooking good, warm, comfort foods and to bake to your hearts content!  My family so appreciates my efforts and I put lots of magick into my cooking and baking to bring love, abundance, peace and joy into my home. 

Well, I’m off to finish my piece of pie, to listen to the rain, and read for a bit.  I’ll post a favorite Samhain ritual and my altar pics soon!  Until then, I hope you are enjoying this magickal time of year to the fullest!

 

   “There is no sight on earth more appealing than the sight of a woman

      making dinner for someone she loves.”         

                                                 ~Thomas Wolfe

Blessings and Love, Autumn

Sources:  My recipes or from my cookbooks, pictures are mine or from the internet. 

 

 

 

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Filed under Autumn, Loose incense recipe, Oil Blend Recipe, Photography, Quote, Recipe from my Kitchen, Samhain

The Witches Sabbat……Samhain!

Merry Meet!  It is October!..the favorite month of the Year for most Witches, including this one!  The wheel of the year has turned, Mabon has passed and October has come, bringing cool crisp days, brilliant foilage of reds, golds, rusts and browns, jackets and sweaters are coming out of the back of the closets, garden centers are loaded with Mums, pumpkins, gourds and corn stalks, the smell of woodsmoke hangs in the air, and the Witch’s heart and soul quickens…for Samhain is coming, the New Year…the thinning of the veil….and there are things to be done for the favorite night of the year! I’m so excited!

 

       “A white lace of frost webs the sidewalk a kaleidoscope of leaves.  Hillsides are ablaze with flame-colored trees, fields lie fallow and dark, and cornstalks dry to the color of bone in the low golden sun.  The sky promises rain tonight and winds rise to torture the clouds.  Fog swirls down the darkened street, shrouding the candlelit grin of a glowing jack-o-lantern, and the veil between the land of the living and the land of the dead grows as thin and insubstantial as the mist.”      from Simple Wicca by Michele Morgan

 I love this description…it is so perfect for this time of the year.  Samhain (pronounced Sow-en)  known also as All Hallow’s Eve or Halloween  is the third harvest festival of the year.  The God has died, returning to the Underworld, to wait to be reborn at Yule.  The Goddess is a Crone, mourning for him, leaving the world in darkness for a time. It is  a time to honor our departed loved ones and the night when  it is believed the veil between the material world and the Spirit world is at its thinnest and that the dead return to commune with the living.

In ancient times,  Balefires burned on every hillside and great feasts were held.  A place was set at the table for family members who had passed on to the Spirit world.   For the Celts, tis was New Year’s Eve.  In some traditions, Samhain marked a “time out of time,” the ending of the old year, the new year not beginning until the Sun’s rebirth at Yule. Samhain is considered the oldest and most sacred of the Sabbats because it honors the cycle of Life and Death. 

Samhain Correspondences

*Element/Gender— Water/Male

*Threshold— Midnight

*Symbolism— Death and transformation, Witches New Year, wisdom of the Crone, end of summer, Honoring our ancestors, thinning of the veil between worlds, death of the year, time outside of time, night of the Wild Hunt, begin new projects, end old projects, Magick, knowledge.

 *Symbols/Tools/Decorations—  Jack-O-Lanterns, Balefires, Masks, Besom, Cauldron, the Waning Moon, black altar cloth, oak leaves, acorns, straw, black cat, Crescent Moon, grain, bare branches, pictures of ancestors, candles.

 *Herbs— Allspice, broom, comfrey, dandelion, deadly nightshade, mugwort, catnip, ferns, flax ,mandrake, dragon’s blood, sage, straw, thistles, oak, wormwood

 *Incense/Oils— Frankincense, basil, yarrow, lilac, camphor, clove, wood rose, wormwood, myrrh, patchouli, apples, mint, nutmeg, sage, ylang ylang

 *Colors— Black, orange, indigo,

 *Stones/Crystals—  Black stones, jet, obsidian, onyx, carnelian

 *Customs/Activities—  Carving jack o’lanterns, spirit plate, ancestor altar, costumes, divination, the Feast of the Dead, feasting, paying debts, drying winter herbs, masks, bonfires, apples, tricks, bats, cats, ghosts

 *Foods—  Apple, pumpkin pie, pomegranate, pumpkin, squash, hazelnuts, corn, cranberry muffins, bread, ale, apple cider and herbal tea.

 *Gods—  Horned Hunter, Cernunnos, Osiris, Hades, Loki, Arawn, Anubis

 *Goddesses—  The Crone, Hecate, Cerridwen, Arianrhod, Caillech, Baba Yaga, Bast, Hel

 *Spellworking/Ritual—  Honoring/consulting ancestors, releasing the old, foreseeing the future, power, understanding death and rebirth, entering the underworld, divination, dance of the dead, fire calling, past life recall.

 How can you celebrate Samhain?..besides of course trick or treating, visiting corn mazes and haunted houses, hayrides and Halloween parties?  One custom  of this Sabbat that I love is the “Dumb Supper.”  This is setting a place for the spirit of your departed loved ones at your table and lighting their way to your hearth with carved pumpkins and candlelight. I have done this for several years now and it’s really a special thing to do.  You can set a picture at the place setting or settings of the person you are inviting to join you.  Turn off all the lights and just have candles lit at the table.  Make it a silent meal..no talking….just focus on your loved one you are remembering, and maybe THEY will have something to say to you! 

Dress up for the occasion..whether you wear a costume or put on your best witchy clothes, hat, robe…  It’s your night…dress for it!  Have a bonfire under the Moon.  Throw your dried harvested herbs in to make the smoke even more magickal.  All forms of divination are paramount on Samhain Eve.  Dark mirrors for scrying, Tarot cards, runes, or pendulums are all perfect tools to take advantage of  the heightened spiritual energies at this Sabbat. Set up a table by the fire and do some tarot or rune readings for your friends and family or just see what the Universe has to say to you on this night.  If you are blessed to have some time alone, contemplate the coming winter, and use this time out of time to let die old ways of thinking, outworn beliefs, and negative patterns.

Leave some bread and wine outside as an offering to the wandering souls and the Faeries.  Make sure you have some jack o-lanterns or luminaries lighting the way for them to your home!  The grinning pumpkins provide protection as well 🙂 

One of my favorite things to do just before Samhain, is to have a Harvest Soup Party.  I invite some friends and family over, telling them to be sure to dress warm.  I set up about 3-4 crockpots of different soups…like chili, veggie, potato, and corn chowder.  I have bowls of toppings such as crackers, shredded cheese, bacon bits, sunflower seeds, sour cream, croutons.  I have a pumpkin tureen filled with warm spiced cider..some vodka or rum can be added for the adults.  A couple of desserts such as pumpkin pie and apple crisp round off the menu.  A bonfire is going, bales of hay with fleece blankets are great for extra seating, and bandannas in orange, black, brown and red are great to use as napkins!  You can have a table set up for pumpkin carving for the kids..with the adults help of course. Tell ghost stories and roast marshmallows to finish up the evening.   Everyone loves a great night outdoors with good food and good company….they will look forward to your party every year!

I’ve got my Autumn decorating mostly done today…decided I needed to shop for a few new things for the house and the weather will be perfect this week to go pumpkin and mums shopping and apple pickin is on the agenda too. I’ll be making my famous Amish Apple Pies this next week as well.  Yummy!!

October is a wonderful month and it seems to go so so fast..at least for me it does. LOL!  Be sure to enjoy every minute of it…take a walk or a drive and take in the brilliant color. Visit an apple farm and have a caramel apple or sip on some apple cider. I love to bake and cook this time of year.  When you do cook or bake, make up some extra and take it to a neighbor or someone you know would love it.  Don’t forget the critters! Put out Indian corn, peanuts, and bird seed for those who are gathering for the long winter ahead.  Bring in the last of your harvest before the first frost.  I have herbs to get in and I need to do it tomorrow as we have frost warnings already! 

I’ll post blog soon with some of my favorite Autumn recipes.  In the meantime, enjoy the cooling weather and the change of the Seasons….Happy October!

“Listen! The wind is rising, and the air is wild with leaves, We have had our summer evenings, now for October eves!”
Humbert Wolfe

 

 

Bright Blessings, Autumn

*Sources..my BOS & Simple Wicca by Michele Morgan.  Pictures from the internet. 

 

 

 

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Blessed Samhain……

Merry Meet friends!  It’s Here!  Samhain weekend!  The world is full of busy happy witches right now. 

There are feasts and bonfires, cooking and brewing, trick or treating and costumes, spells and rituals, Dumb suppers and quiet time with our loved ones who have passed.  The veil is thin, the quarter moon shines, and it’s the Witches New Year!!  My post is short as I will be a very busy witch the next few days also!  I fell in love with this poem and thought it says how we are all feeling at this magickal time of year.

The wheel has turned, the wheel of light,
 stoke the fire and make it bright…
Samhain call, samhain come,
 feel the rhythm , hear the drum..
.The veil it thins, the veil it shrouds,
 the spirits rise upon darkened cloud…..
The time of orange , time of black,
 time to move forward and not look back…
.Pumpkin lit , with candle burn,
 away dark spirits this guardian turns…..
Night of the ancients, night of the olds,
 remembered in stories now to be told…..
The Crone doth rise upon this night,
 look into the shadows without a fright…..
Rituals and rites across the lands,
 empowers the soul where they stand….
 Trick or treat, heal or curse ,
 the hand should be crossed from a silver purse…….
The Wheel begins its time anew,
 the release of the old for the knowledgeable few….
The time to scry to see the path we must take,
 and of the choices we need to make….
She comes to us in many guises
 the Crow and the owl her favourite disguises….
The Earth gives us her last to give,
 the bountiful harvest so we can live…
We feast and drink in a sacred space,
 behind samhain masks to hide our face…..
Through darkened day and moonlight night
 All hallows Eve is a beautiful sight…..

(C) Copyright Phiona Hutton July 2010

My wish for all of you is that you be a Happy Blessed Witch at this Most special time of Year.  Hugs and love to you and your families!
Blessed Be, Autumn

 

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The Dumb Supper……..

Merry Meet my friends…Samhain draws ever nearer and I find myself thrilling to it.  Darkness falls earlier each night…the wind is brisk and leaves are falling…jack o’lanterns are showing up on porches…the veil in thinning…Magick is afoot!

Samhain is about honoring our ancestors; our loved ones who have passed beyond the veil.  One way to do this is to have a Dumb Supper.  This year, my family will be having one.  A Dumb Supper or Silent Supper is just that..everyone present stays silent during the meal.  There are a few particulars about the meal too….it should be held in sacred space.  You can accomplish the sacred space in your own kitchen or dining room simply by casting a circle, cleansing and consecrating it.  All table service should be black..this includes the tablecloth, plates, glasses, napkins etc.  I don’t have black dishes so I accomplish this with a visit to a party store and I buy the heavy plastic dishes.  Third, I only use candles for lighting or oil lamps…this gives the space the beauty and somberness it deserves. Lastly, each guest should bring a prayer for their loved ones who are being honored and they may bring their divination tool of choice also.

The chair at the head of the table can be shrouded in black…now the Spirit chair.  Then you may leave other chairs empty to represent the loved one you’ve lost or your ancestor.   When setting the table, place a black votive candle at each empty chair that represents a deceased loved one or ancestor and a white votive candle at the Spirit Chair.  Light each candle. Place your hands on the shrouded chair and ask for Spirit to be with you. Walk to each ancestor’s chair touch it, explaining that the ritual is being done in the ancestors’ honor.

The host of the feast sits in the chair opposite the shrouded chair. As each guest enters the room, he or she should go to the Spirit chair, touch it, then go to each of the ancestors’ chairs and place a prayer under each plate or say a simple prayer silently. The guests then take their seats, join hands and pray a wordless blessing of the meal and for all present. The host serves the empty chairs, beginning at the head of the table. Then the host serves the living guests from oldest to youngest.

After the feast is done and all have finished eating, all join hands, silently asking for the blessings of Spirit on the living and the dead. Now is the time to gather each prayer left under a plate and burn it in the flame of the candle by that plate, catching the ashes in a container. On the sign from the host, the guests leave the area, stopping by empty places or ancestral altar on their way out.

After the host thanks Spirit, the guests return to share any impressions they received during the feast. The table is cleared, and divination can be done. Allow the candles to burn until all have gone home, and then snuff each candle. Throw the candle ends and prayer ashes into a moving body of water, or bury them off the property.

I find this to be just a beautiful way to honor our loved ones…the meal should be simple, delicous and beautiful.  Even if its just your immediate small family, this ritual can be very touching and magickal.  While you are silent, or during divination after the meal, listen to see if anyone has a message for you…do you feel their presence? 

My paternal grandmother was a christian woman whom I loved dearly…and whom I believe gave me my early understanding of the witch in me!  She was a witch and didn’t know it!  She had a huge garden that she loved spending time in..she taught me to know when veggies were ready to be picked..how to shell peas and snap green beans and make homemade apple sauce and apple butter.  She made her own home remedies..she taught us to lay in a hammock and look at the starry sky…taught us to listen for the birds, how to make a doll from hollyhocks..she was wonderful!  A meal at her house ..even breakfast..was a 7 course meal full of things made with love from her garden.  I often feel her near to me…and I know she is aware of our lives and whats going on with us.  I will celebrate her at my Dumb Supper..along with other grandparents, a good friend and yes, even my two little dogs.  And this year, I have a baby grandchild who was lost in early pregnancy but I believe I will know in another life. 

Beggar’s night in my area, is on saturday night the 30th.  My family will celebrate that as well!  We live on a windy country road and pretty far from the road and we don’t get trick-or-treaters here, so we head over to my daughter and son-in-laws house for the evening.  She makes chili, cornbread and an apple dessert.  This year my nearly two year old granddaughter Lily will be going out to collect her candy in her darling lady bug costume while us grandparents and Auntie will pass out candy at their house.  Then we have a nice casual meal and just enjoy being together!  I can’t wait!

I send my wishes to you all for a Blessed Samhain..and my your ancestors and loved ones come thru the veil to spend some time with you.

Blessed Be, Autumn

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Samhain……

Merry Meet friends!  Yes, I am writing a bit more this month than I normally do…I feel so inspired this time of year!  Thought I would post some info for those who may be new to paganism, wicca or witchcraft…and some of you who have been around awhile..might like the info too!

     Samhain is one of the Greater Wiccan Sabbats and is generally celebrated on Oct. 31st.  This Sabbat is the  third harvest festival. It marks the end of Summer and the beginning of Winter.  The God has died, returning to the Underworld to await his rebirth at Yule; the Goddess is the Crone, mourning her lost love, leaving the world for a time in darkness.    “Samhain” means “End of Summer” and its historical origin is The Feast of the Dead in Celtic lands.   It is believed that on this night, the veil Between the Worlds is at its thinnest point, making this an excellent time to communicate with the Other Side. It is a time  when the Dead are honored.  Pagans, Witches and Wiccans  honor their loved ones who have passed on to the Summerland.  Customs of this Sabbat are ancient and include the “Dumb Supper,” setting a place for the silent souls of departed loved ones at your table and lighting their way to your hearth with carved pumpkins and candlelight.

   Samhain is the Witches New Year and a very powerful time for magick.   Rituals for this night include Divination, Past-Life recall, spirit contact, meditation, and astral projection.  Samhain is a good time to do  spellwork for protection  and  is considered to be a good time to boost your confidence and security.  The correspondences below will help you to make the most of your spellwork on Samhain night!

 Samhain Correspondences

*Element/Gender- Water/Male

*Threshold- Midnight

*Symbolism- Death and transformation, Wiccan New Year, wisdom of the Crone, end of summer, Honoring our ancestors, thinning of the veil between worlds, death of the year, time outside of time, night of the Wild Hunt, begin new projects, end old projects, Magick, knowledge.

 *Symbols/Tools/Decorations- Jack-O-Lanterns, Balefires, Masks, Besom, Cauldron, the  Waning Moon, black altar cloth, oak leaves, acorns, straw, black cat,   Crescent Moon, grain, bare branches, pictures of ancestors, candles.

 *Herbs- Allspice, broom, comfrey, dandelion, deadly nightshade, mugwort, catnip, ferns,  flax ,mandrake, dragon’s blood, sage, straw, thistles, oak, wormwood

 *Incense/Oils- Frankincense, basil, yarrow, lilac, camphor, clove, wood rose, wormwood,  myrrh, patchouli, apples, mint, nutmeg, sage, ylang ylang

*Colors- Black, orange, indigo,

 *Stones/Crystals- Black stones, jet, obsidian, onyx, carnelian

 *Customs/Activities- Carving jack o’lanterns, spirit plate, ancestor altar, costumes, divination, the  Feast of the Dead, feasting, paying debts, drying winter herbs, masks,  bonfires, apples, tricks, bats, cats, ghosts

  *Foods- Apple, pumpkin pie, pomegranate, pumpkin, squash, hazelnuts, corn, cranberry muffins,   bread, ale, apple cider and herbal tea.

*Gods- Horned Hunter, Cernunnos, Osiris, Hades, Loki, Arawn, Anubis, Gwynn ap Nudd

 *Goddesses- The Crone, Hecate, Cerridwen, Arianrhod, Caillech, Baba Yaga, Bast, Hel

 *Spellworking/Ritual- Honoring/consulting ancestors, releasing the old, foreseeing the future, power, understanding death and rebirth, entering the underworld, divination, dance of the dead, fire calling, past life recall.

 Contemplate the coming winter, and use this time out of time to let die old ways of thinking, outworn beliefs, and negative patterns.  Meditate, rest, and incorporate relaxation techniques over the next weeks to deepen your psychic awareness and to restore your soul.  And await your own rebirth at Yule, as the Wheel comes round full circle once again.

Samhain is many witches favorite time of year..and I’m no exception.  Not only is Mother Earth resplendant in her glorious color, but there is Beggars Night for the children, there is trips to apple farms and pumpkin barns, bonfires, harvest parties, spooky hayrides, barn dances…there is baking with apples, caramel apples, popcorn balls, mulled cider, hot soups in crock pots…there is carving pumpkins and picking out costumes…it is a joyous time indeed!!  Make the most of every minute with your loved ones!   And don’t forget…..Witches Fly on Samhain Night!!!  I’ll be flying with my sisters across the Moon…come and meet up with us!!

Samhain Blessings to all of you, Autumn

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Countdown to Samhain……

Merry Meet my witchy friends!  It is October…the best month of the year!  The countdown has begun to Samhain, All Hallows Eve, the Night of the Dead, the night when the veil between the worlds is at its thinnest.  The Witches New Year..the most magickal night of all!!  All over the world pagans are preparing…they are finishing up their harvesting of herbs, veggies and preparing their gardens for winter.  They are decking out their homes in pumpkins, mums, apples, ravens, owls, scarecrows, candles and all the “scary” stuff that goes along with Beggers Night.  They are preparing their altars, organizing feasts and bonfires, and wood is stacked by the fireplace. 

This is the time of year I love the most..always have.  Autumn to me was always the time of year where Mother Earth is at her most beautiful, where the smells of woodsmoke and leaves burning and apples cooking  can bring me to tears in gratefulness for the Blessings from the Goddess at this time of year.  I have so many fond memories of raking leaves and jumping in them with my siblings.  Of having Halloween parties with all the trimmings…bobbing for apples, donuts and apple cider, the costumes and candy…. of helping my grandmother pick apples to make her applesauce and apple butter.  The magick and excitement of trick or treat night…trying to see thru a smelly plastic mask ..tripping over my too long costume…and feeling the cool crisp air and the heavy bag of candy.  So magickal indeed!     

Then there are the quiet times too…taking a walk, needing a jacket..the cool air, blue skies or dark starry night..leaves crunching underfoot…spiced cider in the pot, warm and ready.  Sitting on the porch with blanket over the knees, watching the critters scurrying to gather, birds flocking to fly.  Or taking my daughters to the pumpkin barn for pictures and to find the best pumpkin there.  I now get to enjoy that with my darling granddaughter.                                                                                                                                                 

I will post more information about Samhain, my altar, my own festivities as this month goes along….but I wanted to write about the joys of this month.  I hope that you all, along with me, celebrate every wonderful moment of it.  Today, go take a walk, or go buy some mums or pumpkins, or pop some apple cider into a pot, or have a caramel apple.  Light a fire, read a book and sip that cider.

Autumn blessings to each of you until we visit again!  Autumn

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