Happy Imbolc! In celebration, I’m sharing this recipe for Whiskey Milk Punch from the Gather Victoria ECookery book (for Gather Patrons) which is called Scailtin in Ireland. It can be dated back to the 1700s where it was commonly served in a punchbowl and drunk warm in a mug – but I’m serving it over…
Written and Photographed by Juliet Blankespoor
No matter how many years I plant seeds and watch them grow into mature plants, I am still awed. I feel an utter child-like excitement when I see the first green signs of a sprouting seed poking up through the soil. Germinating seeds are a universal symbol of hope and renewal, ushering in the joy and promise of spring. In a world growing more complicated and technological by the day, it is a comforting pleasure to witness the simple, yet miraculous, processes of plant life.
As an herbalist, I strive to cultivate direct relationships with the living medicinal plants I use in my practice—either by growing them in my garden or wildcrafting them in a sustainable fashion. I came into this craft through my fascination with plants, along with their myriad offerings; growing medicinal herbs is one of the greatest joys in my life.
I have been growing plants for the last two decades and, like every gardener, I have learned as much from my mistakes as my successes. Growing up in the suburbs, I spent little time gardening; I didn’t catch the plant bug until I left home. My first vegetable garden was pretty much a flop, as I really had no clue what I was doing. But in my mind, I was now a gardener, and ready to try again the next spring. And luckily, many of my friends had green thumbs, or grew up on farms; they took me under their wings and taught me skills that are now instinctive.
View complete article at: Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine ~ Growing Medicinal Herbs from Seed
For years I considered Imbolc, just another extra holy day to be observed. It didn’t hold a lot of personal resonance with me, and this can feel true for many individuals when it comes to the pagan holy days or witches’ Sabbats. Simply reading about the day’s history and traditional observances, learning the myth of an associated deity; or making Brigid’s cross every year because that’s just what you do, leaves some wanting for relevance and deeper meaning. Celebrations like Samhain and Beltane are outwardly witchy and their symbolic associations are self-evident. While every day can’t be Samhain, (unfortunately!) additional occult understanding of the Sabbats can be discerned by looking at them holistically. By looking not just at one Sabbat, but three; the Sabbat in question, its predecessor and the one following, we can gain additional insight into the story being played out by the stars. Think of…
View original post 983 more words