Posts Tagged ‘Wiccan’

Imbolc is fast approaching and I find myself without an organized idea of what I want to do. I do, however, feel like I have a slightly deeper understanding of what this sabbat means to me. Yesterday I had the realization that it was still light out at 5:30 in the evening. This may not seem like a big deal, but when you live in a place with deep, powerful winters, the psychological boost of seeing light at 5:30 in the evening is immeasurable.

This realization led me to another: this is what Imbolc is all about. In the past, Imbolc has been sort of a confusing holiday for me, especially because in February in Michigan, we are still usually deep in the throes of winter. If you pay attention to the world around you, however, you see that this is also the time that the days are finally noticeably longer and we can see and feel that we’re just starting to come out of the dark sleep of winter.

This is what Imbolc is for me. It’s a gentle awakening from the hibernation of winter. We open our eyes and stretch sleepily as we blink into the gradually increasing light. The deep, inward dreams of winter begin to fade as we start to look outward again, ready to begin anew.

What are we ‘beginning?’ Well, anything, really. Perhaps we’ve learned something during our introspective winter and with the return of the light, we can begin the work that goes along with that learning. Maybe we simply find ourselves with a stirring of energy that we can now start to stoke and work into a blazing fire of activity. Whatever it is for you, now is the time to reflect on it and begin to, well, begin.

This can also be a good time for a bit of ‘spring cleaning.’ Even though it may still be cold where you are, consider opening your windows just a crack (if you’re sure they won’t freeze open, that is) for 15 minutes or so just to let some fresh air sweep through. While you do that, do some general spring cleaning activities or even simply decluttering. Add to this a house cleansing and already you can feel the energies in your house change. Vitality will stir, ready to be stoked by you.

I’m looking forward to Imbolc and just the act of writing this post has given me ideas for what I’d like to do. I think I will turn on all the lights in my house as well as light a few candles to symbolize and welcome the returning light. I’ll spend some time meditating on the deep of winter and visualize the gradual return of the light as I feel the spark inside me stir. I, personally, don’t see this as a ‘return’ of the Goddess, but more as a changing. She is always with us, regardless of season, She simply changes form. From an introspective Goddess, guiding us through the dark and teaching us about ourselves, She now gradually guides us towards becoming more active, towards using the knowledge and energy we’ve stored up during the winter. She guides us to starting anew. I think I’ll also start some seeds for my garden. Just the thought of doing that makes me smile.

What are your favorite ways of celebrating Imbolc? What does Imbolc mean to you?


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I found both of these info graphics on the internet and thought I would share them with you. They’re a handy little reference for dates. I’m in the Northern hemisphere and I have February 2nd for Imbolc, though. Looks like it’s probably correct for Lammas in the Southern hemisphere.


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Such a lovely article.

Gather Victoria


In the old nature religion (in which the divine was often perceived as feminine) it was the female horned reindeer who reigned supreme as the great goddess of the winter solstice. It was when we “Christianized” the pagan traditions of winter, that the white bearded man i.e. “Father Christmas” was born.
Today he chariots Rudolph and his steed of flying reindeer across our mythical skies and we have forgotten the power of the Deer Mother, the female horned Reindeer. Stronger and larger than the buck, it is she who leads the herds.

And it is her beloved image that adorns the Christmas cards and Yule decorations we are so familiar with today. Because, unlike the male who sheds his antlers in winter, it is the Deer Mother, who carries the life-giving sun safely through winter’s darkest, longest night in her horns. stag2 Across the North, since the Neolithic, from the British…

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Happy Thanksgiving to those who celebrate it today!

Last night my husband and I had our own Thanksgiving feast since today is going to be a bit busy with spending time with family. I would like to share what I recited before we ate. It’s from Everyday Witch A to Z Spellbook by Deborah Blake. I changed it for us so it applied to multiple people as it is written for a solitary.

“I am grateful

For the blessings bestowed upon me this day

And every day

I am conscious

Of the gifts that have been given

And the wishes granted

I am aware

That not everyone shares my good fortune

And that others suffer

I am hopeful

That my good fortune continues

And is spread to others

I am grateful

Blessed be”

More of my Thanksgiving posts from Thanksgivings past:

Animal Totems: Turkey

A Ritual of Thanks

Two Simpsons clips to sum up Thanksgiving 😉


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Every year on Samhain, I light a candle for my departed loved ones and to honor my ancestors. I don’t do anything fancy or ceremonious. I keep things simple. I find that for most rituals, simple is the best for me.

This year was no different. Before the trick or treaters came, I spent some quiet time at my altar, invoking the spirit of the season and lighting candles, communing with the Elements and the Goddess and the God. I asked to be open to receiving messages or impressions from departed loved ones. Just like every Samhain, nothing happened.

Now, I have experienced the dead. I have felt and ‘heard’ ghosts numerous times. I have interacted with fae and animal guides and others that I simply have no name for. I’m very sensitive to things the 5 senses don’t pick up. So, why do I never hear from my dead loved ones? Samhain night I almost always sleep like a rock. No dreams. No feelings or impressions.

I have thought about making my Samhain ritual more complicated, adding herbs and crystals to give it extra oomph, but will that really make a difference? Part of me feels like there’s a reason my loved ones don’t communicate with me, but what is it? Maybe it’s because even after all these years, thinking about them makes me cry? Maybe because I have a lot of guilt associated with the two I want to hear from the most? Is it because I’ve never specifically called to them on Samhain? I just leave the invitation open for any of my departed loved ones or ancestors. If that’s the case, though, why has no one ever communicated with me? Or why have I never been able to sense them near me?

Has anyone else experienced this or had different experiences during Samhain?

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I’ve had this song stuck in my head for the last few days so I thought I would share it for the start of the week!

Bright blessings!


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The last year or so (maybe even two) I have felt more and more disconnected. I endured three years of worsening mistreatment at my job. It included bullying and ‘lack of hours’ type scheduling leaving me for weeks at a time without a shift. I truly loved my job, despite the treatment, as I worked with animals as a Licensed Veterinary Technician. I helped them heal, I calmed their fears, I cared for their bodies (and I like to think for their souls, as well). I comforted clients who had to say goodbye to their beloved companions and I was there, comforting and loving, as we sent suffering animals on their way to peace. Through all of that, I was bullied and mistreated at work and quickly experienced a type of caregiver burnout. I believe in being open and honest and was told by my boss that he, too, was an ‘all cards on the table’ type of straight shooter. That was a flat out lie that I quickly learned, but couldn’t do anything about. He lied and connived and manipulated all of his staff and if you weren’t a favorite (which I quickly wasn’t because of my dislike of lying to other staff members as he asked me to do on numerous occasions and my staunch reluctance to engage in ‘office politics’) he badgered and tormented you. My other issue there was that my coworkers were his niece and daughter and then later a woman who had worked for him in the past, but didn’t have my certifications, that he brought in to replace me but didn’t actually fire me (hence the ‘lack of hours’ I was told every week when I was forced to call in looking for work). So, with his other employees being family, I didn’t have anywhere to turn (even though he treated them in varying degrees the same way he treated me). I did mention a few of my issues to the office manager, but she just blithely stated that she didn’t think that what I mentioned was happening and implied I was reading too much into the situation.

Now, you might be saying at this point, “Why didn’t you just quit and find another job?” Well, by the time I had decided I needed to leave that place, my confidence in myself had been greatly diminished. I had gone into the job vulnerable to start with (I was still very much in the early stages of grief over the loss of my beloved dog, Shadow and my grandmother) and had just been stomped on and demeaned so much by someone I had initially looked up to (my boss) that I felt worthless and incompetent. I’ve discovered in the medical professions not many coworkers will hold your hand and be comforting to you or just generally care about you at all.

Fast forward to 2014 when my mother, who had a stroke a few years prior, called me and said she wanted to move closer to me because her husband at the time had left her in the middle of the night. She was unable to do a lot of basic things for herself and needed help. I immediately said that I would help her and after a few months of planning, she moved up near me. This gave me the courage to resign from my job as I now had a ‘good reason’ in my mother needing my help.

For the next year I helped my mother. I took her grocery shopping, to doctor appointments, out for drives for fun, and so on. I helped her shower and prep food. As she progressed through a consistent schedule of physical therapy (something she had never had before) she became able to do more things for herself. She was able to shower alone, to prep food herself, and to do her own laundry and basic household cleaning. Through it all, however, we were constantly fighting. If the right decision was to turn left, she would immediately without hesitation turn right.

My mother and I have a very complicated relationship. She was an alcoholic for most of my childhood and all through my teenage years. I can count on one hand how many times she beat me as a child, but it isn’t the frequency that makes abuse. She was verbally and emotionally intimidating and I lived in an almost constant state of fear of her or of the outside world because she constantly drilled it into me that outsiders couldn’t be trusted. To this day I still have moments when I expect my husband (who is the most gentle person I have ever known) to turn to me and start screaming at me (something he has never ever done, but something my mother did all the time; she was wildly unpredictable)

When I turned 18, I ran away from home and lived with my dad. My dad and I had issues, as well, but we talked them through and our relationship is solid now. My mother, on the other hand, refuses to acknowledge her drinking problem. She has been sober now for quite a few years, but that doesn’t erase the past. It doesn’t erase my need for resolution. I have since realized I will need to find resolution on my own, but that’s another story. So, because of my pent up, unresolved anger with my mother, I found myself butting heads with her, sometimes purposely in a redirected aggression sort of way.

Eventually, caring for my mother and having that history with her that I can’t talk to her about, broke me down. I was going through not only caregiver fatigue once again, but also dealing with roiling resentment and issues I couldn’t resolve. My body gave up and I got incredibly ill. I had borderline pneumonia (my half sister pointed out that lung issues can come from unresolved grief) and was bed ridden for almost three months. I got ill in late September/early October of last year and didn’t recover until February of this year. I have never been so sick in my life. I hope to never be that sick again. If I hadn’t been so weak, I would have been terrified at the time. I couldn’t breathe and had to use inhalers. It felt like I was dying.

When I recovered, I discovered that my mother had gotten back together with her now ex husband and within a few months of my recovery, they moved back across the country and out of my life. Right or wrong, I was relieved and grateful. She is a person I simply cannot have in my life. She is toxic for me.

It has been a few months since all of that and we are entering my favorite season of the year, Autumn. I feel more alive and rejuvenated this time of year than any other. So, I am hoping to capitalize on these energized feelings and move forward with healing myself. I read Practical Protection Magick: Guarding and Reclaiming Your Power by Ellen Dugan and it has helped me see some things I did wrong in the work situation as well as how to work on the psychic yuck I have clinging to me. I have been so swallowed up by negativity this past year or so that I didn’t even realize it. Isn’t it amazing how that can happen?

So, I’m working on clearing the negativity from my life. I have even created my first permanent altar and it has made so much difference for me. I used to just have one that I would set up if I needed to do a spell or ritual, but to have a permanent one feels so good. I’m working on being happy and am on the road to health and hope to be blogging regularly again soon.

Blessed be to everyone and may you find balance and healing in your lives!

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