"She seemed to come suddenly upon happiness as if she had surprised a butterfly in the Winter woods"
(edith wharton)

Thursday, 2 August 2007

IMBOLC and some family news!

In the Celtic calendar Imbolc is the first of the four fire festivals. It is known as the Festival of Light ~ the rekindling of the fire. Although it is still cold, it is the day we celebrate the passing of winter and make way for the coming spring. Imbolc is a time of cleansing and blessings, a time to clean out all the unwanted in our lives & our homes as we prepare for our new beginnings. It is the time of year for recommitment to your spiritual growth. Traditionally the date of Imbolc down here is August 2nd (well, that is if we actually celebrated it) but the date changes each year according to 'the stars' . The date for Imbolc 2007 is August 5th. I celebrate it, traditionally, so,here in the southern hemisphere I celebrate on August 2nd. a look into my garden at Imbolc; magpies, irises, buds and new growth of Spring are starting to become visible. It is a time when I can feel the blood stirring in my veins..awakening to the promise of warmth to come. I see the sun at a different slant each afternoon in my garden, staying a little longer each day. I want to go and buy my seedlings but I have to remember to be patient and not rush spring.

*art by Colette*

the Goddess of Imbolc is BRIGHID

Incense: Frankincense, myrrh, jasmine, camphor, cinnamon, lotus, basil, wisteria.
Candles: Red and white.
Gemstones: Amethyst, garnet, onyx, turquoise
Ritual Herbs: Angelica, basil, bay, benzoin, celandine, heather, myrrh, frankincense,
Plants for Imbolc: Snowdrop, Rowan, Apples, Potatoes, Corn, Lavender,
Foods for Imbolc: Dairy foods, Spicy foods, Curries, Peppers, Onion, Garlic, Raisins, Cinnamon, spiced wines. All foods symbolic of the Sun
Colours: White, lavender, Silver.

It is a time to bless our candles, to bless the seeds that will be planted in spring time - either those you will plant into the ground or those seeds that are in your creative mind - your intentions and wishes.....ask that they grow strong and come to fruition.

Leave a piece of cloth on your doorstep for Brighid to bless. It is believed that Brighid will lend her healing powers to any piece of cloth that is left out at Imbolc. The piece of cloth is known as Brighid's mantle. As the cloth is blessed each year, the mantle gains healing power

Take a walk and look for signs of spring, collect pebbles and other natural trinkets, to place on your altar, a shrine or in a nature bowl.

light candles in each room to bring on light and warmth and say goodbye to the dark - to honour the Sun's rebirth.

food should be plentiful! Something green and fresh, such as a salad, would indicate the coming of spring, but since winter is still with us, the main fare should be hearty, served with a nice, crusty bread. Mead, ale, spiced wine or non-alcoholic equivalents would all be appropriate beverages

Make a bride/Brighid doll, with a bouquet. Give her a veil and hang nuts with white ribbons around her arms. The doll may be dressed in a long white gown and a white mantle. She is then decorated with bits of greenery, spring flowers, ribbons pretty stones and shells. The best and brightest ornament is placed over the heart and called Rionnag Brídeóg, the "Star of little Brighid." A small wand placed is beside her. "Bride is come”

This is traditionally a time of purification — clean your house! If you have any Yule greenery lingering, burn it now.

Make your own Brighid’s crosses and hang them up, especially in the kitchen where her influence can bless your food.

Meditate upon what you would like to see grow in health and strength this year: for yourself, your family, your community, the Earth, and ask for Bride's blessing upon your prayers.

"If Candlemas day be fair and bright, Winter will have another flight.
If Candlemas day be shower and rain, Winter is gone and will not come again."
(traditional verse)

today dawned 'fair and bright' here in Woodford, albeit quite chilly so it looks like Winter will 'have another flight', so it is not quite time to clean my fire out or put the winter woolies away!

and I guess this is as good a time as any to announce that we have a new addition coming to our family. Our eldest daughter Louisa and her husband Garth are expecting their first baby in early March.... if all goes according to plan.. a little Pisces baby.... those of you have been reading my blog since i started will remember me blogging the wedding on *Daily parcels*

*~* I hope your day is filled with butterflies, magick, colour & fripperies! ~*~


LisaOceandreamer said...

That is blessed news Robyn, a new life - a new grandchild - what joy!! The next generation continues.
We have a ways to go yet for Fall here so it seems so odd still that Spring is coming to you. We get our hottest weather come late September which always disappoints because the crisp air should be ushering in the season. By the time we really FEEL fall...winter approaches. Odd the seasons throughout the world.
How's your Mum?

Bimbimbie said...

So many interesting things to take in and absorb and many reasons to make my 2nd August a special day each year ..... wonderful timing for your new addition too Smiles *!*

Julie Marie said...

As you celebrate Imbolc, we celebrate Lammas (tho not so much in ND!) Happy Imbolc/Lammas to you.

Congratulations on your wonderful news.

How's your mom?


Naturegirl said...

My heart is filled with butterflies knowing that you will soon have a grandchild to love and teach!! A NeW Beginning! Congratulations!!
What I love about you Robin is that you teach and tell us so much about
appreciating the seasons and the how to rituals! Love visiting you!
hugs NG

Tracy said...

Congratulations on the new grandbaby! Babies are so sweet. :)

Garden girl said...

Robyn - lucky you to have a grandchild on the way - the post too about what to do in spring, I like lists like that!

Blue said...

Wonderful news about your newest addition. You cannot go wrong with a Pisces!!! They are amazing. Very loving, and very attentive and sweet.
I love all the Imbolc information, I had never heard of it, and I loved the information about Brigid's mantle etc...this is good to know! Thank you for sharing your wisdom Robyn.

Peggy said...

congratulations on the new grandbaby on the way! Soon I will be reading about all the grands at your home and what memories they are making! (I am working on a goddess soap.. will see how it goes)

Autumn said...

Blessed Imbolc my friend. May your day be a special one!. Congratualtions on the news of a grandbaby, that is wonderful news.

Anonymous said...

Lovely news about the grandbaby. Hope you have a great Imbolc. Love Hugs and Blessings

Tinker said...

Oh a new baby to love and cuddle - how wonderful! Congratulations!

I feel as though I'm walking through the looking glass, as I watch you heading into spring, celebrating Imbolc, and on this side of the glass, it's Lammas and we're heading into fall...

'Twas brillig and the slithy toves, did gyre and gimble in the wabes all mimsy were the borogroves and the mome raths outgrabe!

I have no idea if I spelled any of that correctly - I just suddenly had the urge to quote it, so I did! Must be the aftereffects of the full moon, lol...
Hope all is well with you and all of your loved ones, Miss R~

AnnieElf said...

What a joy! A baby. Blessings and wishes for a safe carriage and delivery.

It's hard to think of August 2nd here as spring since it is triple digits at the moment. But the cloth set out at night is weaving its way to my doorstep right after I post this. My mother's scarf can become a healing scarf.

I also found instructions for making the cross. Hope to post it in a while.

Sheila said...

A great post Robyn, thank you for the information. It fascinates me how all the rituals are observed and celebrated. Congratulations on the new baby, a third grandchild..!
You are almost caught up with me..LOL

Kai said...

congraddies on becoming a grandparent.. march babies are fun..
:) peace and blessings to you and for your mum to get better.
peace, kai xx

fairycakegirl said...

Oh congratulations, I'm soooo pleased for you all. It was such fun to read about the wedding and now we have a wee baby to look forward to. My hubbie is a Piscean, not sure if that's a good omen! LOL

Carmen said...

What a wonderful news! A baby!

lila said...

Congratulations on your new grandbaby! We are expecting a Scorpio grandson this year...means another quilt to make!
Enjoy your lovely springtime!

peppylady said...

We just past Lammas and it been hot and dry here.
What wonderful a grandchild soon.

Sweetpea said...

I enjoyed this, I learned a lot. Congratualtions to Louisa xx

amelia said...

Congratulations. A very blessed event for sure!

A bird in the hand said...

Robyn, when I wrote Imbolc above the drawing of St. Brigid's cross, I had no idea she was the patron of Imbolc!!!

I have a St. Bridig's cross I got in Ireland years ago, hanging in my hallway...

Great information, thank you!

May St. Brigid heal your Mum!

xoxoxo Colette

Gemma said...

Blessed Imbolic Robyn
with love
I will celebrate Lammas and remember Imbolc for you.