Belated Ostara

I actually really like the equinoxes though I know many people who struggle with them. I like the fall because, well, it’s my birthday (specifically, the 22nd), and I can’t think of a better way to spend it than ritual and feasting afterwards.

The spring, I enjoy because I love that moment of balance and quiet before the spring starts bouncing out in all due force. Minnesota is weird: some months, spring comes quickly, and if we’re lucky, it falls on a weekend. Some years, winter drags its feet about leaving (like this one, apparently: it was 35 and clear and melted snow on Thursday. Friday? 3+ inches of snow.)

Anyway, Thursday, before a busy SF con filled weekend, we did our first Sabbat ritual. Have a photo of the altar after we dyed eggs. You can see the altar here – it’s had a little photo editing done, as I am apparently incapable of pouring red wine into a cup on a white cloth without spilling some.

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Friday night ritual

I live alone. I’m often free on Fridays with nothing scheduled (in the past, it’s been because various covenmates have their date nights on Friday, and also because of other aspects of my schedule.)

I decided when I moved to try Fridays as a personal ritual. Come home, tidy up a little bit, and make a nice meal with a few extra special touches. Maybe a glass of wine, or something that takes a little longer to cook. I’d fallen out of the habit for several months, but tonight seemed like a good day to try again.

I didn’t have much cleaning to do (I spent last weekend and the early part of this week doing a serious spring cleaning of everything that wasn’t tucked under the bed or kitchen table – that’s this week’s project) so I came home, put the library books out of the way, petted the cat, and did some basic cooking.

Nothing fancy today – mashed potatoes with the remains of the gorgonzola crumbles, a mixture of frozen peas and carrots, and some stuffed grape leaves (bought while I was at the co-op for something else today). I’m about to stick baked mushrooms in the oven for a late-night snack. A little Perrier (from a gift bottle from a friend) to drink, as I’m out of still-good wine.

I actually ate at the kitchen table, rather than the computer, too. (When it is just you, and you are busy, eating at the computer becomes somewhat more reasonable than otherwise.)

I then brought every non-specifically-dedicated candle in the house (ok, that’s six of them: I don’t have a lot of storage for them) into the bathroom, lit them, stuck nice music on iTunes, and had a lovely long candlelit bath. I have baths anyway [1], but taking a long time and luxuriating with a gift of LUSH bath stuff (Bathos, a longtime favorite, this time) in the candlelight was glorious.

I then spent the evening doing some writing and catching up on other things. In a bit, I’ll go curl up in bed with a book or two (a new-to-me mystery series that looks promising.) And a cat.

I’ll have to do this next week. (The 22nd, I will be out at a Wailin’ Jennys concert with two good friends, so I will have to find another night. And the 29th, I will be in ritual, so ditto. I’m excited about their concert: their “One Voice” – how I discovered them – encompasses a lot of my worldview in some ways, and I like a lot of their other songs, too.)

[1] My tiny little house doesn’t actually have a shower, just a claw-foot bathtub. This suits me just fine, as I prefer baths by preference. There’s a longer story behind this, but it’s been an evening decompression ritual for decades now. (Also, as I point out, you can’t read most books in the shower for very long.)

The “what’s core” sorting process (part 1)

The calendar keeps flipping….

All good intentions about updating aside, it’s hard to keep on top of with my current schedule. (Day job from 7:30am to 4pm weekdays, my part time temporary reference librarian job weekends 12-5 and Monday and Tuesday evenings), plus various religious group commitments.

This weekend was blissfully free for a change: some brief social stuff and errands, but all of Monday free due to Martin Luther King Jr. Day. I feel part-way human again. Plus, I’ve only got five more days at the temporary job to go, which helps with momentum.

Conversation, part 1

Last week, my group had the first part of a really productive conversation about what the core of the tradition is. We’re still in progress on this, but we’re in agreement on a lot of things. One of the things I’ve been thinking about is the difference between how we do things, and why we do them.

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Cliques and open rituals

I’ve seen a number of comments online in the last few weeks about people who comment that they find going to open rituals hard, because they’re so cliqueish. I can’t evaluate their experiences (since I don’t live where they live, and therefore am not seeing the same things), but I do have some thoughts.

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