Imbolc Newsletter 2 February 2020
Welcome to a new year and a new decade, and for me, a new beginning in the shop, as I make changes to be able to maintain the shop in the only form I can manage these days, so I have been travelling away from the village in order to have time and space in my head to think where we go from here (and while they also knocked the old pantries down in my kitchen, which had been in the planning for months).
Imbolc is the first celebration in a new Year and a new decade, and the start of the Earth beginning to wake up once more. However, most exciting, check out that date – 02.02.2020 – a rare palindrome…reads the same both ways!! It also adds up to 8, which is a good omen for anything new that is to do with career, business, buildings and finance – I did think about staying closed and re-opening on this auspicious date…but perhaps long enough closed, so will reopen Thurs 16th Jan but watch for closure shortly for a close family funeral, once the date is known!
Lots of people are finding they are having to make changes, whether they were in their plans or forced upon them from outside forces (like my shop). Funny to think that, not so long ago, I was a 7-day enterprise with 8 other staff helping to make it so, but now it is all change. At the end of the day, I created the shop 24 years ago, with the force of Maggie behind me…and although it is quite hard to face, people come, they add their little twist to the shop, leave their mark, and then they move on to go to the next part of their own journey, but without me, there is no Green Witch enterprise, so it’s onwards and upwards folks… as best I can for a crone in her 60’s!!
New hope at Imbolc…
Though frost and snow may still be around at the start of the year, life under the ground is beginning again. I have seen new growth already (quite early this year) and the snowdrops should be pushing through the anytime now. The pregnant ewes will be producing milk ready for the birth of their lambs and the circle of life begins again…spring is surely on its way!!! The light is also starting to noticeably grow and the dark succumb slowly to the light once more!
Imbolc encourages hope for the coming year and, with the political unrest, we definitely need as much hope as the Universe can muster! I had a look back to 2010, and we were knee deep in snow and needed much abundance, as we had been cut off with the central belt here in Scotland the worse hit! That decade certainly made its mark, and if we Brexit on 31/1/20, this one too will go down in history (but maybe not for the right reasons!)
So, what do you want the next decade to bring to you? As the Earth begins to waken, now is the time to start making your wishes to the Universe known! How did the previous 10 years change your life? For me, a friendship turned into a relationship at the beginning of the decade, and he is now my much-loved husband after eloping to Gretna with our kids. Our family have all got their own lives underway, all working, most in settled relationships, and the highlight of these was the birth of my little Beltane Bambino, Ragnarr. We also found balance with our little motorhome Meg and our Dalmatian Marshall so, much change, movement and fulfilment in our personal lives, with added stability in our working ones. How about you? How can you improve on the last decade this decade? Time to renew your ‘Wish list’ for the next 10 years…where do you go from here? To being, make the 1ststep…
Wishes for a boost
As I state yearly, Brigit gives us three wishes on her day, one Universal, one for the family and the last for you. Because of changes abound for the new decade, most of you need to do this, as it is needed by most even more, so follow this simple ritual on the 2nd Feb before dark…
Place 3 white flowers on your altar (snowdrops from the garden if possible) and light a white or natural beeswax candle dedicated to Brigit. From that candle, light 3 more (tea-lights are fine) and make your wishes as you light them. This must be done during the day of the 2nd and the candles allowed to burn to the end. Like I said, the 1st wish is for the World as a whole, the 2nd for family and the final wish is for yourself. Think carefully about what you wish for, as you only get the one chance annually, so make it matter!!
Abundance in a little jar
This is a small jar, that you add fenugreek seeds to, on a daily basis. If you have bills to pay or a business to run, this is a little growth spell that helps improve your situation. If you haven’t begun, then the time has come to do so. I recently discovered, after the shock of Helen leaving, that the mice had actually been in and eaten all my seeds…my little abundance jar was empty and my staff had all left! Time to begin again afresh and get the shop back running in a healthy way…and this little jar of seeds if one of the ways I am going to survive again!
Half-fill a tiny/small jar with fenugreek seeds, which represents your business, and every day, add a few seeds to the jar. This represents business growth. Do not put the lid on the jar, as prosperity cannot flow in if it is sealed. When the jar becomes full, take outside and empty the spent seeds to the ground, half fill the jar with new seeds and begin again. Remember, if you stop adding seeds, you are happy where the business is at and when things are going well, I seldom add to the jar, but when things take a downward turn, then we start to add daily again… but never, ever seal the jar with a lid, as businesses always need room to grow and not be capped and stifled. Good luck to all businesses at this time of uncertainty and may prosperity & abundance return to us all!!
As we are usually frosty or snowy, the colours for Imbolc are white (for the ewe’s milk) and green (for the fresh greenery pushing up through the snow from the deep). Imbolc itself means ‘from the belly’, referring to the greenery from the Earth or the new lives waiting to be born from the animal’s bellies! The Goddess Brigid, is symbolised by fire, so candles are very relevant at this time, as is milk and lamb.
As we enter a new decade, here is a simple ‘Imbolc Ritual of Light’ you can carry out with your partner and family:
Firstly, gather some candles or tealights and matches on a table and sit round it in the family lounge or kitchen. Turn off all the other lights in the house then finally the family room. Spend a few moments together, holding hands in the darkness. Be aware of the dark and how it feels and, after a few minutes, strike a match and light a single candle to celebrate the return of light. Then, each light a light within the room, and as the light gets brighter, go through the house lighting or placing a candle in each room until all the house is illuminated. Rejoice in the light and thanks the Universe for bringing the light back into your lives. Smudge the house to bring clarity to your home and light incense around the home to clear away the negativity of winter and put positivity around each room. If you feel the need, have a cleansing bath with Juniper or Frankincense oil to cleanse the body too. You have now welcomed the light of the new decade into your home & your lives to move forward with positivity & hope!
Magickal hot chocolate…Imbolc celebration
You can celebrate Imbolc, after the ritual above, with a celebration of milk, & make luxury hot chocolate!! Up here in the mountains, hot chocolate is served with Baileys (Whisky Cream liqueur), an even richer milky celebration, which gave me the idea to include Real Hot chocolate…no, I don’t mean a pack of instant with hot water, but the real stuff people enjoyed before instant came along. If you don’t want the fuss, you can make original instant with hot milk, but here is a recipe for a simple luxurious Imbolc treat for you and your partner…
Ingredients: 300ml milk, 70ml double cream, 50g good chocolate, chopped, 1 x shot Baileys (optional)
Method: Add the milk, chopped chocolate and nearly all the cream to a pan (saving a little for the top). Heat gently whilst whisking until smooth and bring to the boil. Pour into 2 mugs or liqueur coffee glasses & add Baileys. Swirl the cream and grate a little chocolate on the top et voila…an Imbolc celebration indeed
CBD Teas, oils and tinctures
I have struggled to maintain our CBD so, in December, changed to a new source from the Lothians. Not only do Loveburgh carry oils and tinctures, but teas too with more products to come. As we recently lost our tea supplier I was wondering where we go now, so I got a few of the CBD teas to add interest to my tea shelf. They began selling straight away, so check out our new CBD range when next instore if it is of interest to you.
New website coming soon…
With my new beginning comes a new website too. I have asked for a simpler, easier, mobile friendly e-shop to be created and we launch asap though I will have lots of work to do adding products etc, but hopefully it will be so much simpler for me to add to, new products etc and will be part of my weekly work from home (more later).
Shop hours 20’s style…
After much contemplation in the Tyrolean mountains, I have decided that, no matter what future help I get in the shop, I have to rely on always being able to work it myself to make it consistent, and any help that comes will be extra help to the normal running of the shop. However, I am not as young as I used to be, nor can I do what I used to do, so in the raging 20’s, in order for the shop to continue, I have no option but to go down another day to just opening 4 days per week. That way, I can maintain the shop and do all the other work on the days not in. There is a huge amount of work to be done that no-one sees: those bottles all need filling, creams making, stock re-ordering, Vat and tax done etc etc…meaning even though the shop will be closed when I am not in, I’m still working, just not instore! The times quoted are the minimum the shop will be open and if I am on holiday, ill, family stuff (a funeral, my disabled mum needs help, bambino unwell etc) or I just need a break, we will now have to remain closed.
The shop opening times will now look approximately like this:
MONDAY: Closed (mixing and making day at home a usual)
TUESDAY: Open 10.30am till 5pm
WEDNESDAY: Closed (website, book-keeping and extra bottling, plus paw patrol, at home)
THURSDAY: Open 10.30am till 5pm
FRIDAY: Open 10.30am till 5pm
SATURDAY: Open 10am till 5pm
SUNDAY: Shop Closed (actual Day off)
So, The Green Witch lives on into another decade…you can’t keep a good witch down for long (witchy cackle)
Brightest Imbolc Wishes to you all from Chris (alias the Green Witch)
Christine Macdonald, Mystique Moments, 59-61 High Street, ABERDOUR, Fife, Scotland KY3 0SJ