Magical Mysteries

The Scottish Selkies…mysteries of the deep

My visit to Ireland and the magick of the Leprechauns, fairies and warrior women intrigued my imagination and made me thing back to magickal beings of Scotland… say hello to the Selkies! Being never further that 60 miles from the coast wherever you are in Scotland, they have always had magickal, mystical beings of the sea and, like Nessie…we like to believe and hope that they are actually real… you can’t help but watch ripples in Loch Ness…just in case you are that one watcher that sees him!! Maybe living by the sea all my life intrigues me that these people of the sea have also always been ‘about’!! Selkies, Orcadian for ‘seal’, are definitely a Scottish mystery brought from Scandinavian mythology to Shetland and Orkney but spread through the coastline of Scotland…anywhere where seals are close to the beach. 

Have you ever seen seals as they bob about in the water, with seemingly human eyes that inquisitively stare at you? Seal people want what they don’t have: when in the sea, they want to be on land, where they can shed their skin and walk humanlike, but they eventually yearn to go back to the sea. This they can do as long as they have their sealskin safe…they can just put it back on and slip into the sea to return to their seal family. There are many stories about Island and Highland men who find seal-women bathing without their seal skin, manage to find their skin and keep the women as their wife and bear children. The only sign the mixed-race children are ‘different’ is webbed fingers and toes, and if this is snipped, it just grows back but much rougher and scaly! The seal-women are true to them and give them children but eventually will locate their skin and return to the sea, never looking back. It seems to stem from travellers from Iceland and Finland that travelled in kayaks made of sealskins. These submerged to just under the water surface but must have seemed really strange in their seal skins, then walked on land. Life back then was very short and very unpredictable and the sea held a mystery that has fascinated Man forever. Selkie folk were calm and gentle like a still, calm sea. Men also cast off their skin and went in search of unsatisfied women. Women who wanted to call them had to head for the shore at high tide, and shed 7 tears into the sea. The Selkie man would then come ashore, cast off his sealskin, stashing it carefully and then would ‘satisfy’ wanton women, single or married. If a girl went missing after heading for the beach, everyone knew she had been taken by the Selkie to join him in his watery domain! Spooky…

Making a Magickal Bonfire

A magickal bonfire… I love lighting an outdoor fire in my garden on a beautiful, calm evening, especially if there has been a lot of issues or I am just not feeling myself. Lighting a fire outdoors is very primal and reminds us not only of how far we have come as humans, but also that life is for living and to enjoy the simple pleasures. Sitting round a bonfire with a few friends and a bottle of wine, chatting and laughing away the hours watching the evening light turn into dusk, and watching for bats…it’s the simplest of pleasures that put life completely into perspective. Sometimes I just like to sit and watching the flames dance to clear my head, whilst clearing the garden of rubbish and old wood, knowing this is all I actually needed to sort stuff. Other times, I make it more formal and include herbs and notes to throw into the fire. This is a spell I have used in the past from Ellen Duggan…simple, strengthening and effective… You will need a handful of lavender buds, a few rose petals and a couple heads yarrow, and can be fresh or dried. I have done it in the past but this time, I feel it will look more like a scene from ‘The Craft’, as the girls join me!! Repeat the charm and throw the flowers into the fire at the end of its mentioned line… Lavender buds bring protection and love, Goddess hear me and answer from above  A cluster of Yarrow, the wise women’s herb, its all-purpose magick adds strength to my words  Petals of roses for passion and power, grant wisdom and love in this magickal hour For the good of all with harm to none, by fire at Lammas, this spell is all done A toast in the darkness with a magickal glass of wine and know the next season will be full of love and positivity.

A magickal bonfire…

I love lighting an outdoor fire in my garden on a beautiful, calm evening, especially if there has been a lot of issues or I am just not feeling myself. Lighting a fire outdoors is very primal and reminds us not only of how far we have come as humans, but also that life is for living and to enjoy the simple pleasures. Sitting round a bonfire with a few friends and a bottle of wine, chatting and laughing away the hours watching the evening light turn into dusk, and watching for bats…it’s the simplest of pleasures that put life completely into perspective. Sometimes I just like to sit and watching the flames dance to clear my head, whilst clearing the garden of rubbish and old wood, knowing this is all I actually needed to sort stuff. Other times, I make it more formal and include herbs and notes to throw into the fire. This is a spell I have used in the past from Ellen Duggan…simple, strengthening and effective… 

You will need a handful of lavender buds, a few rose petals and a couple heads yarrow, and can be fresh or dried. I have done it in the past but this time, I feel it will look more like a scene from ‘The Craft’, as the girls join me!! Repeat the charm and throw the flowers into the fire at the end of its mentioned line…                                   

Lavender buds bring protection and love, Goddess hear me and answer from above

A cluster of Yarrow, the wise women’s herb, its all-purpose magick adds strength to my words

  Petals of roses for passion and power, grant wisdom and love in this magickal hour

For the good of all with harm to none, by fire at Lammas, this spell is all done

A toast in the darkness with a magickal glass of wine and know the next season will be full of love and positivity.

Techno magick…using your phone

I am a bit of a dinosaur where technology is concerned, but I have learned to love my phone. I have a Galaxy note and do is Sudoku and jigsaws to keep my brain active and giving me 15 minutes coffee & me-time in my busy week.

One thing I love doing is changing the screens. I adapt them to the forthcoming seasons, to colours for how I am feeling or what magick I need to attract into my life. If I am feeling a bit down, I will put a funny note on my screen that makes me smile every time I switch it on. If I need calm, I will put a page of lavender fields or trees or a beach! I also use different ones on my locked screen to my home screen so double bonus!

Only when I thought about what I was doing and my thought processes finding the right screen picture, did I realised that this must be a modern form of magick. Every time you switch on your phone, or your phone sends you a notification, you are igniting energy to light up that thought, feeling or desire, like the flame of a candle. I don’t know if anyone else has thought of this and are using it, but ‘every little helps’ and I do feel it helps my life moves forward with every new change of screen. Give it a try…free magick with every phone…what have you got to lose? It just needs a little thought, the right picture and who knows what you can do: just don’t smash your screen or let that battery die!!

Your Magical Garden

A new page, this will grow

A project for the kids… (or not)

If you are lucky enough to live by the sea and take the youngsters for a walk, find some nice round beach pebbles for the garden. These can be cleaned, painted and decorated, then painted with gold or silver markings for such ideas as “Magickal Garden” or “Fairie Garden”, “Sun Garden” and “Moon Garden” or for directions of the compass, North, South, East and West etc etc, the possibilities are endless, simply painted or fancily decorated, and finally, once dry, sealed with lacquer and put in pride of place in the garden. Simples.

For the Little People in your garden

As any reader of Shakespeare knows, in Midsummer Night’s Dream, it is a custom of followers of the old ways to offer respect to the little people by leaving them food and drink on this night. When you raise your glass, state that you are giving some to them, then pour on the ground from your glass, or pour into a small dish.

The same with food – don’t just throw it out, as you would to the birds as this is considered by them to be a sign as disrespect, but actively give them a share of your own food and drink and set it where they can find it. This ensures that if your garden does contain any resident little people, then they remain on your side, and not work against you.

Witch’s way to Happiness

I have noticed a lot that people are stressed and not sleeping well. This is not a good sign, but why? I think I have a suggestion and it came in a Pet Clark song, written by Tony Hatch and Jackie Trent:

Life is never what it seems, we’re always searching in our dreams, To find that little castle in the air
When worry starts to cloud the mind, it’s hard to leave it all behind, And just pretend you haven’t got a care There’s someone else in your imagination, You wish that you were standing in their shoes
You’d change your life without much hesitation, But would you, if you really had to choose?

So, don’t look around, get your feet on the ground, It’s much better by far to be just who your are

The other man’s grass is always greener, The sun shines brighter on the other side
The other man’s grass is always greener, Some are lucky, some are not, Just be thankful for what you’ve got

Those that guide us upstairs think it has a message which I have to pass on. Happiness is being thankful for what you‘ve got, and misery is about worrying about what you haven’t. Ancient tribes always thanked their Gods for the things yet to come: rain, good crops, children etc. When I was a kid, we thanked everyone for everything in advance:

Thank you for the world so sweet, thank you for the food we eat

Thank you for the birds that sing, thank you Goddess for everything!

Nowadays, people always want a newer car, a better job, fancier phones, bigger houses, designer clothes, more extravagant holidays, want, want want!!! This is not good! Happiness will never be yours if you want what you haven’t got, what is on the other side of the fence where the grass is so obviously greener!! Changes have to be made so people stop stressing about such things…whereas if you consider what you have got, life will be simpler, better and happier. Change your thoughts, put on your red shoes & find that Yellow Brick road to happiness!

What is happiness…are you happy?

Now there’s a question!! Maybe it is an age thing again, but I find that living in the here and now brings me contentment and happiness whereas negative thinking can in fact become a habit. As Monty Python says…

If life seems jolly rotten, there’s something you’ve forgotten!

And that’s to laugh and smile and dance and sing,

When you’re feeling in the dumps, don’t be silly chumps,

Just purse your lips and whistle — that’s the thing!

And… always look on the bright side of life…

Morning affirmation

On waking, instead of starting your day with a moan about having to get up so early, dreading going to work to a job you hate or whatever your day holds, start your day by waking up, thanking the sun for shining, for being alive, for being lucky to have a job, a home, a good partner – find the positive in your life and try & be grateful for it all at the start of the day – try being thankful for waking up alive and healthy in your own home in your comfy bed with a job to go to…just remember that greener grass, because someone somewhere would give anything to have your life…it’s you who just cannot see it! Change your perspective on your day – believe me, it will make your day so much better!! Here are some more things to do in your day to make it happier:

Get up, smile, and smell the coffee…I mean, really smell the coffee and start your day chilled and full of hope.

Be nice to someone or appreciate someone you otherwise take for granted

Tell someone you love them every day and give a friend or neighbour a hug just because…

Smile at a stranger who might look lonely or sad in the street – people staying in our village are always amazed that people are so friendly. Everyone smiles and says “Morning” to each other, including strangers.

Don’t complain: as Thumper’s mum say in Bambi; “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all”

Don’t look at the negative of a situation…try to find the positive in everything, no matter how difficult. Negativity only attracts negativity so if you think it will be bad, it will be, because Nature will never let you down…so instead, go for the good things and get them into your life instead – positivity attracts positivity!

Here is an example of my perspective when I was away on a surprise holiday:

On the plane I got a coffee, which I knew would be awful (instant coffee – Yuk!). A whiff of the coffee followed by a taste told me I was right. I then thought about this and reviewed my thoughts…! How lucky was I to be on a plane with a cup that contained coffee that came from Brazil, had been picked and processed and put into the coffee cup that had found its way onto a plane where the nice cabin steward had filled it with hot water and presented it to me. How could I judge it as rubbish when it has travelled so far and involved so many people! Re-viewing my situation, I was amazed how the taste changed and that coffee was really quite drinkable! Change your thoughts! Change your vibrations! Change your life! It really does make a difference to your day!! Life is not for stressing day in and day out. That is not life! It is about making the most of each and every day and being grateful for those little things in life. When you think of things differently, and are happy and thankful for the small things, great changes take place and life is suddenly worth living.

My Lucky Perfume…

It is all a matter of perspective…and my perfume will prove that to you. I bought an extremely expensive bottle of Tom Ford perfume because I just loved the smell. When I got home, I went into complete panic about being such an idiot, wasting so much money on a bottle of perfume and convinced myself I should return it. The next morning, I looked at the box and the angel on my shoulder said “Take it back” whilst the devil on the other said “Open it”…so I opened it, deciding it was going to be my lucky perfume, or why would I have bought it! I now use it every working day, stating “Today is going to be a great day” and spray it on…and every day it is…making it so worth every penny in every way! What I am trying to say is find your lucky charm, perfume, shoes, knickers… whatever works for you; it alters your vibration, you feel good and that makes you attract good days every day!

Find your “Happy Stone”

By my bed sits a beautiful bright green Chrysoprase tumble. Don’t ask me why it came about as I have no idea…

I just put it by my bed when I first got it. I call it my happy stone, and everynight when I go to bed, I hold the crystal and thank it for all the fab things that have happened that day. Your task is to find your “happy stone”. You might already have a stone you really like – it might be a lump off the beach or a beautiful tumble from a shop…it must be a stone that makes you feel inspired, joyful or makes you smile, or is simply one you like to feel in your hand, or maybe you are yet to find it. Either way, when you have your special crystal, hold it in incense and name it you happy stone.

Every night, thank it for the good things of the day. Being thankful for what you have got will attract more good things to you, or so I have found with my beautiful apple-green stone. Try it yourself and watch your faith in your ‘Happy stone’ bring wonderful things to your day and to your life.

Preparing for that bad day…get your Emergency kit ready to go…

Someday, we all get puched to breaking point, even me! No matter how positive we are, we all need a back-up plan for that really rotten day. Here are some ideas that I use at the end of just one of those days:

  1. We all have our favourite songs that just make you feel good if they come on the radio – those that make you stop and smile or sing or dance, because they transport you to another time and place.

Prepare a playlist of your special, happy, uplifting songs that simply make you smile. Then, when you have had a bad day, put those tracks on and twirl and dance around like no-one is watching.

  1. Go for a walk in your garden, down the beach or wherever is calming for you, and use the elements to cleanse and calm you and get rid of the day. Come back and have a quiet drink of coffee, tea or your favourite tipple…whatever will give you that breather for a few minutes to get your head together.
  2. Have a bath with geranium oil, my Euphoria blend or juniper berry to purify the day away.
  3. Keep a special rose quartz or similar pink stone cleansed ready for such a day & carry for calmness.
  4. Inhale from a tissue your favourite essential oil – something indulgent (rose, neroli, jasmine or melissa), uplifting (bergamot or Sunshine blend) or calming (geranium or Euphoria blend)

I hope some or all of these ideas help when that trying day has pushed you to your limi. Learn to fit 10 mins “You-time” into every day to relax and breathe and just take time out of your busy day just for you.

Natural health tips

‘Move more, chew more, drink more’ and lose your winter coat

Move more…once the Spring arrives, it is easier to take longer walks in the sunshine and on lighter evenings to up movement. Only my generation and our children have become used to vehicles, lifts, stairs etc. As kids, we had no option but to bike or walk to and from school, shops, friend’s houses etc, so I now park further away from the shops and walk, I walk to and from work, and I make a concerted effort to up my daily steps and exercise to get my body working as it was meant to do. Our body has been millenia in the making and stationary all day on a chair, sofa or in a car it was not meant to be…so think about how you can just move more.

Chew more…in our 21stcentury living, we eat fast food on the move or in front of the tv and actually don’t notice what is being consumed half the time. Nor do we give our stomach and brain time to catch up. Try taking a mouthful, putting downing your knife and fork/sandwich etc and mindfully chew your food…about 28-30 times, then take the next mouthful…you will then let your body and mind catch up and tell you when you have had enough. It is also better for your digestive system too as the food is easier to process. Another tip… use smaller plates! I have cutlery and pans from when I was 20…they are much smaller than what is ‘normal’ today. If they don’t fit in the dishwasher or cupboard, they are too big! Big plate, big portion, big potential…to overeat!

Drink more…most of today’s kids drink plenty indeed…but of the fizzy stuff! In my day, pop (fizzy juice) was for high days and holidays, not every day and certainly not all day every day…and don’t get me started on diet stuff! The body can utilise water and herbal teas immediately, without ‘processing’, whilst everything else you drink has to be processed through the system. Everything in moderation is the key here, because a little bit of what you fancy does you good. 4 cups tea or ground coffee a day are good for you, 20 cups are not. The body is made up mostly of water, so needs to replenish or you become dehydrated. Drink sips water throughout the day between your cup coffee or glass of fine wine and you will prevent your body from having to crave food just to rehydrate itself. Get a nice water bottle and carry fresh water with you (save on the plastic at the same time)!

Hopefully, my body will shed its winter coats with ease, as it does every year, by following my usual plan. All you have to do is support your body to do what it needs to do, give it fresh natural food and plenty of hydration with exercise & it won’t fail you…and in return, you’ll look and feel much healthier too…!!

Watch your tongue!!

When I was young, the doctor would always ask you to put out your tongue as part of his analysis of treatment. Why? Well, you would be amazed at what the tongue can tell you about your health on a daily basis. Once you get used to checking out your tongue, any problem coming can be easily spotted.

When you look at your tongue in the mirror, it should be salmon pink, smooth, no cracks with a thin white moist coating. If there are teeth marks along the side of the tongue, your tongue is probably swollen which suggests a need to upgrade your diet as it shows signs of poor nutrition, lack of water and an overworked liver.

If there is a thick white coating on your tongue, you may have a viral illness going on, and if the white coating is at the back of the tongue, then you need beneficial bacteria to aid your digestive system – start on acidophillus.

A brown coating suggests excess smoking and constipation so cut down if not stop smoking and eat more fibre.

Now for colour: a pale tongue points to deficiency in the body including vitamins and minerals, a red tongue is an angry system, a red tipped tongue a stressed system and a purple tongue indicates a poor circulatory system.

So, make friends with your tongue and any alteration to its normal state gives you an immediate sign that something is not right and you can quickly bring your system back to health.

Friday 13th…Lucky for some

 Lucky for some… let’s look at Friday 13th…

I love finding out about the base of superstitions over centuries and this superstition actually contains two!!


Friday (Freya’s Day) has since biblical times, been regarded as the unluckiest day of the week, ever since Adam & Eve were thrown out of the Garden of Eden! The Bible continued this theme with the start of Noah’s Great Flood, and the final dig at Friday became Good Friday, when they crucified Jesus, and it became a day of abstinence! Friday’s deathly position continued as ‘Hangman’s Day’ through the centuries, as criminals were executed on a Friday, nicely before the weekend! Because it became known as a day of endings, superstitions began to arise regarding Fridays and especially around new beginnings: don’t begin a marriage, a new journey, project or job! People wouldn’t move house on a Friday – Friday flit, short sit!! I came from a fishing community; fishermen had to face up to the elements so would never tempt fate & set sail on a long trip on a Friday! Maybe this is also why Friday was the day to eat fish and abstain from meat! Even Chaucer wrote “And on a Friday fell all this mischance’! Did you know there are even superstitions about cutting your nails or hair on a Friday – bet that come from the witchcraft trials as there is a lot said about what witches can do with your cast-off hair and nails!

Number 13…

Then we come to the number 13. It is said that the 13th day of any month is the unluckiest day of all to embark on a new enterprise, or marriage, or to set out on a journey…just like Friday! It has been associated with bad luck for hundreds of years. Scandinavians believe this because Loki was their 13th Mythological demigod, who caused the world to be plunged into darkness! Christians have always thought 13 unlucky following 13 people at the table of the last supper on the 13th and the 13th person at the table was Judas the traitor… with Good Friday the next day! As a waitress, it was always seen as unlucky still to have 13 people at a table so we always set an extra place! Many buildings don’t have a 13th floor or even a room 13 and some airplanes refuse to have a 13th row! It is even said that you are cursed if you have 13 letters in your full name…how long did they work on this to make the crime fit the bill…  but Charles Manson, Adolfus Hitler and Theodore Bundy to name a few! Folklore even put 13 steps to the gallows, though it is also said 12 up, and 1 down! Now put that with Hangman’s Friday…are we getting the gist?

 And so, to Friday 13th – the unluckiest day of all…

The origins of this superstition is set around Friday 13th Oct 1307. It was believed the Knights Templar protected the Bible’s Holy Grail and they also became the 1st ‘Bank’ carrying ‘paper’ money between countries for safety as they spread the good word! Philip 1V of France got into debt with the Knights after war with England, conspired with Pope Clement V, and on this Friday 13th, charged the Knights Templars with Satanism, sentenced them to death and ceased all their monies, scattering escapees to the far corners of the world to avoid torture and death!

With all the superstition over ‘Friday’ and ‘13’, put them together and you have…the unluckiest day ever! Or is it? Maybe witchcraft has a lot to do with this, and their fear back then of witches and wild women in a male society. There are 13 moons a year, which mean women menstruate 13 times a year (this really scared men back then!). Covens had 13 members and worshipped the Moon. Friday was named after Freya, which means ‘lady’ in Norse, and she is the Goddess associated with love, sex, beauty, fertility, gold, war and death, all things that give women power to be who they want to be and not to be messed with, hence why Friday is also known as Witch’s day!

On a good note, any baby born on Friday 13th is said to be a lucky baby, as he/she will prosper in anything they do.

Turn around your finances on Friday 13th

Here is a good luck spell for Friday 13th…perform every time this comes up in your calendar…

Remember the saying “Find a penny, pick it up and all day long you’ll have good luck”? We are going to take 13 pennies (copper carries speed), bury them in the garden (or ground near your home) and simply say as you do:

The 13th is lucky on this Witch’s day so these 13 pennies will bring it my way.

I cast this spell for money today, as will work best now, so I say

These 13 little pennies out my purse today, will bring new money come what way

This will harm none in any which way, as it is lucky to be done on this 13th day

Not so bad now, is it??

A wishing stone

To add happiness to your luck spell, select a stone from a beach or woodland walk, doesn’t matter what type, just a nice wee stone that charms you (we will be using natural flint in the shop).

Cleanse the chosen stone in the happy home or lavender incense. Now hold in your writing hand and visualize your wish for the family and see it being inscribed on the stone. The crystal is going to become your wishing seed. When you bury your pennies in the garden, you can bury the stone alongside. As you bury it, simply say:

Like a seed, my wish will grow, for the good of all I know,

            This I need and do deserve, so my symbolic rock will serve and

            Bring my wish indeed to me, this is my will so mote it be

Setting the Magical Mood

It is ok thinking you can do a spell and that is that and if you are quite adept at magick, then you probably can with the correct intention. However, for the new witches or for matters of great importance, then setting the scene for magick is extremely important. So how do you create the correct magickal space to perform your magick in?

Firstly, you have to prepare you…the magick in you has to be brought to the surface so, if you have the time to do it, firstly have a magickal purifying bath or if time is limited, then a shower will suffice. You cannot initiate magickal intention with the dust and negativity of the day attached to you. The old saying “cleanliness is next to Godliness” expresses it completely and water cleanses the body and purifies the soul, so relax in a bathroom lit with candles and a warm bath scented with frankincense or juniper to purify the body on all the esoteric levels. Close your eyes and allow the strains of the day to float away and still the mind ready for your need. Once dry, put on a loose robe (usually kept especially for magick) – tight clothes restrict the flow of energy and it isn’t about fashion anyway, it is purely on the physical plane where one worries about what one is wearing!! Cleanse the face as no make-up should be worn either for serious magick.

Next comes the magical mode as to undertake any magickal work, you have to be in the correct mindset – it won’t work if you are ill, exhausted or stressed, so a period of quiet time or meditation is called for as preparation for the job in hand. Burn a light incense to set the mode and get yourself into the magickal frame of mind.

After your mind is set, then comes setting up the space: whether you have a magickal altar at home or are just performing the work in your front room, you need to set the scene. Magickal work is so much easier performed in the right mode with the right atmosphere, so simply set your space with candles and light some incense to purify the room and set the vibrations right, and once you have gathered all you need for whatever magick you are performing, you are now ready to begin (once you have locked the door, unplugged the phone and switched off the mobile – all potential disturbances can create havoc so be prepared as forwarded is for-armed in successful spell-casting!!)

Help at exam time

It can be a stressful time for those of you sitting exams and preparing for them so here are a few useful items for you.


The crystals for the actual exams are either tiger eye (your ideas and dilemma stone as well as good luck) and/or hematite (your confidence and go-for-it stone). I personally would take both just to be on the safe side but you may find that you use them differently but I have seen a lot of trembling students rely and pass with the help of these stones and that includes other things like interviews etc where that little bit of oomph is needed. At £1 each for a nice chunky one for the hand or the desk, what have you got to lose? Another good one if you find this time difficult is Amazonite – the stone the Amazon warriors took into battle – it may just give you that bit of extra courage you need if it is a bit lacking.

However, the favourite exam stone over the years has been a Tiger Iron palm stone. It contains yellow jasper for creative aspects, hematite for confidence and a kick up the backside, plus Tiger eye for dealing with dilemmas, which is all exams are…a series of dilemmas. 3 stones in one slipped in the pocket flat, and held in the hand at those sticking points…perfect!

Aroma Therapy for exams

When studying, burn or inhale either of my favourite oils of rosemary or Petitgrain – both stimulate the brain and get rid of those cobwebs but Petitgrain is better if burning the midnight oil as it doesn’t then prevent you from sleeping when you are done whereas rosemary is preferable in daytime and upto about 7pm. Others like to use basil but it actually isn’t one of my favourite aromas – it is all a matter of preference.

I also made a blend called Focus, just for these times. On a tissue for your exams will be very useful for keeping your brain ticking!

Don’t worry about them…

If exams stress you out, then I suggest you start on a course of lime flower tincture for the 6 weeks prior and during the exams, which will calm you during this stressful time and help you to simply get through it (some people I get in just go to pieces when it comes to exams). If you are sleepless with worry or an absolute nervous wreck, then Valerian tincture for a couple of weeks may help – it will give your whole system a tonic too. Another tip is to simply put marjoram on the pillow and in a bath and that will shut the brain down to allow you to sleep peacefully – after all, a good night’s sleep makes all the difference and the extra worry may mean lavender simply isn’t strong enough. Also, don’t forget if you start to feel under the weather, a boost of Echinacea or Thyme tincture will help keep those bugs at bay which always get in when your are overworking or run down – you have been warned.

Superstitions & blessings for a new baby

Superstitions around a new baby…

It is customary upon meeting a new baby for the first time, that a piece of silver be placed into the baby’s hand to ensure luck and prosperity. The money should never be given straight to the parent!! If the baby keeps a hold of the coin, then they will always look after their money but if the coin falls, money will always run through their fingers.

Another custom is to place new born babies in something old first. Midwives of old would carry an old garment around with them to ensure this was carried out. Fortunately, most babies are wrapped in blankets that have been used by other babies in hospital so we are carrying this out unknowingly.

Another protective stone, given to a new child is Lapis Lazuli. Indians would string together lapis beads on gold wire to ensure the child’s good health, growth and protection, whilst keeping away any frights or disturbances, hence psychically protecting the wearer. In other parts of the world, amber was used for exactly the same reasons, whether worn or placed in the child’s bedroom

Coral has been used for centuries, amongst many other things, to protect children. Coral originates from the Greek language meaning “daughter of the sea” as it was considered containing the power of the sea and the moon which rules the tides of the sea. Placed in the bedroom, it will magickally keep the baby safe and well and given as a gift to a child, it will ensure their future good health. They used to make rattles with coral inside as a way of guarding the child during play and infants would wear coral beads to take away the pains of teething.

One of our own…

There was much excitement in my household when we gave thanks for the arrival of our very own Beltane baby. After jumping my Beltane fire, my son and his wife were delighted to find the Goddess had blessed them with a much-wanted child. This time is a special time in any couple’s life but the early arrival of a wee baby boy, born on the full moon, the magickal Wolf Moon, caused great delight in our family!!

After his birth, whilst still in the delivery room, I handed his dad a cleansed piece of jet, and instructed him to place it on baby’s belly for his protection, then pop the jet into a wee blue bag to hang over his cot once he got home. This is an old coastal practice, being from not far from Whitby where the jet is found. Protecting this baby seemed to be of great importance, yet I never actually did it for my own kids. So here are a couple of traditional blessings for a newborn baby…to be said by the parents when the baby comes home. Burn Moon or Water incense, and light a circle of candles (tea-lights are fine), one parent holds baby and the other parent or a grandparent say one of the following blessings, and seal it with a kiss…

Celtic Irish blessings:

May strong arms hold you, caring hearts tend you

And may love await you at every step

And another…

May green be the grass you walk on, and blue be the skies above

May pure be the joy that surrounds you, and true the hearts that you love.

A blessing for the new life ahead:

Gather together a small, pretty box, a rattle or bell (must fit in the box), a piece jet, resins of frankincense and myrrh, a silver pen, a piece parchment or hand-made paper and some silver fairy dust.

On the first New moon after your baby’s birth, (any of the 1st 3 nights) put on Moon incense when baby is nice and relaxed after a bath preferably just wrapped in a towel, hence why you have 3 nights…

Line the bottom of the box with some ground frankincense and myrrh and a sprinkle of silver dust. Draw a silver boot (boy) or shoe (girl) on a piece of paper (or cut out a picture of a shoe and outline with silver) and place in the bottom of the box.

Hold your piece jet in the incense, then touch baby’s belly with the jet and place on the boot in the box.

Ring the bell or shake the rattle 3 times over baby. Put in the box.

Now sprinkle more silver dust over the items in the box whilst saying:

My precious darling little one, your brand-new life has just begun

The best of your life is yet to be, so Goddess please watch over thee

As you journey, live long and well, and let nobody break this spell

Put the lid firmly on the box. Hide the box away where no-one can discover its whereabouts.

Blessing from Brigid for the newborn

On the next Imbolc after baby’s birth, on Brigit’s day, do this Blessing for Brigid: Light a white candle to her, present baby and say:

Goddess of Fire, we present to you our newest member of the family.

We ask you to welcome him (or her) and love him, bless him and protect him.

Watch over him as he grows, as he loves, and as he lives

This we ask of you Brigid; may you love him and take care of him as we will

This promise we make to you as you do to us, so mote it be

Keep a picture of baby on your altar/family mantelpiece with the white candle, and burn it whenever baby needs extra help. Thank Brigid for any help she gives you. Renew the candle and update baby’s photo every Imbolc.

Quick Sleep spell for bedtime:

Whisper (or sing) to baby when in the cot…

Close your eyes and rest your head, my little boy/girl, it’s time for bed,

Dream of love and happiness too, sleep sweetly baby, because we love you