Mabon: Working a Prosperity Spell

As Mabon approaches we give thanks for the abundance which Earth has bestowed on us. For those who practise magick, it’s also the ideal time for working prosperity/money spells, taking advantage of the energy which accompanies this time of plenty.

I’m still fairly new to practising magick, but it’s always been my intention to write my own spells. Since Mabon is also a time for sharing, I thought it apt timing to share my first spell with you all.

We shouldn’t be greedy when it comes to money, but there usually comes a time in all of our lives when we feel we could use a little more. This spell can be used for those times, but as Mabon is also a time of balance, you must take care to follow the last step of the spell.

A Spell for Prosperity

Time: This spell is best performed on the first night of the full moon

Tools: green candle, a coin (any denomination/currency), 2 basil leaves, small bowl of rock salt

Method: Charge the candle with money energy. Wrap the 2 basil leaves around the coin, then charge the parcel with money energy. Place the parcel within the bowl of rock salt, taking care to fully cover it with the salt, and saying

Fortune of silver and gold, send to me a treasure trove.

Light the candle, whilst saying

By the light of the moon, let the Earth’s riches flow, bringing me more of what I sow.

Allow the candle to burn for 2 minutes, whilst visualising your goal. Blow out the candle. Repeat for each night of the full moon.

Donate to charity, be it money, clothing, or to a food bank. This step is important, as what you give out will always come back to you. This must be done within the timeframe of the spell. A full moon usually lasts 3-4 nights, so once within this period is fine.

There you have it. With the Harvest Moon only a few days away, it’s the ideal time to try it. Remember that sharing the wealth is just as important as receiving it, so don’t forget the last step. Wishing you all a prosperous and plentiful Mabon!

Do you believe in faeries? – a Litha celebration

The wheel of the year continues to turn, and we have once again arrived at Litha – the Summer Solstice. The sun at its highest point brings us the longest day, and we can bask in the beauty of the flora and fauna all around us. Bees are buzzing, flowers are blooming, and fruits and vegetables are flourishing. If you are patient and still, you may even catch a glimpse of the faery folk.

This Midsummer’s day we have celebrated by focusing on the magick of the faeries. My little rays have an unwavering belief in the fae, as do I, so it seemed a fitting way for us to honour this Sabbat.

I started by setting up an invitation to play for the two older girls. (My biggest ray opted to do something else; fairy* play is open to all in our house.)

The book is based on the stunning Flower Fairy illustrations by Cecily Mary Barker. It has magical doors which give little glimpses of the fairies and their world. I included little fairy figures and used Grimms and Grapat wooden toys for the scenery. My littlest-middle had a wee play with it, but was desperate to get outside. Ah well, it looked pretty at least!

The next part of our celebration was educational. I read them Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream – the comic book version! We sat on the grass in the sunshine and the children marvelled at the pictures. They laughed at Bottom and Puck, and cheered when everyone married the one they loved. The book is a great way to introduce young children to the genius of William Shakespeare.

Once we had faeries and magick well and truly on the brain, we cast a summoning spell, inviting the fae to linger in our garden. We gathered flowers, and used leaves and grass to wrap them up into little parcels. We then recited our spell and left the parcels on some rocks.

The children checked on the parcels at least seven times before it was time to come in, and I’ve no doubt it will be the first thing they want to check on tomorrow morning!

We talked about the different flowers that are associated with Litha, and my two middle rays wanted to draw them. They pulled out our Usborne Flower Spotters Cards to look at how the stems, leaves, buds, and petals are formed in each one. They looked at daisies, honeysuckle, lillies, and roses. Out came the felt-tipped pens for some flowery artwork.

Once my wee rays were tucked up and dreaming, I took myself back out to the garden for some quiet reflection time and an oracle reading. Usually I stick to a one/two card spread for my readings, but I came across a specific spread for Litha on ethony.com, so decided to try it out. I found it to be quite uplifting, especially as each randomly-drawn card complimented the next. I ended up with the most detailed reading I’ve ever done. I’m really loving my Earth Magic oracle cards, and the more I use them, the more enlightenment I receive from them.

Just as I’m becoming more acquainted with my oracle deck, the Sabbats are becoming a more permanent fixture in my life. There are so many different ways to celebrate each one, and I’m enjoying exploring those different ways. Most people tend to focus on solar imagery for Litha, but the faeries were calling out to me this year. I also found it a great way to introduce my wee rays to this particular Sabbat.

However you’ve celebrated the longest day, I hope you’ve had as much fun as us!

* I’ve used fairy when talking about the book title and pretend play. I use faery/fae when talking about the spiritual folk – wee, flower, or otherworldly.

The Sparkly Grimoire

Since I’ve started exploring my witchy side, I thought it would be a good idea to write everything down. In doing so, I hope to learn what works for me, what doesn’t work, plus I can log all of the new discoveries I make along the way.

A few years ago I looked at bullet journals (bujo) and thought I’d start one of my own. There were so many beautiful spreads on Pinterest, and the styles really appealed to me. Just one catch – I’m artistic in the creative sense, but I can’t draw for toffee! I laboured over the first five pages of my bujo, but a weekly spread took me about two weeks to get “just right”, so I abandoned it. There are so many ways of creating a bujo without using the artistic spreads, but by the time I came across them, I was scunnered with it all!

I kept diaries in my early teens, and it’s always been my intention to start one up again, but apart from my brief liaison with a bujo, I’ve never got round to it.

Until now.

In my post The Magick Within I talk about how I’m not following any specific witchy tradition. I want to discover what works for me; what resonates most with me, without feeling the need to follow any strict teachings. There will of course be some rules that must be adhered to. However, there are certain rules which must be followed in cooking, but that doesn’t mean you can’t experiment or mix things up a bit.

I’m going to write down everything witchy that appeals to me. I’ll include moon phases, the elements, herbal remedies, and spells. I’ll also note my experiences with oracle and tarot cards, plus Sabbat celebrations. I have plans for a magickal garden space too. Anything and everything I come across on my spiritual journey will be included, so that I can adjust if and when I need to. It’s also a wonderful heirloom to pass down to my children, should it be a path they wish to follow.

A witch’s journal can be known as a grimoire or a book of shadows. There are many different images on Pinterest and Instagram of beautiful leather-bound books, covered in magickal symbols. My grimoire is an A4 gold sparkly notebook that I bought on sale at my local supermarket! It looks like it’s been sprinkled with gold faery dust, which suits me just fine, as it looks like magick just waiting to happen!

Do you have a special way of recording your path? Is there anything else you would include in a sparkly grimoire? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

The Magick Within

In my post A Spiritual Life I talked about how I had stepped away from the religion that I had grown up with, and was getting a feel for what I believe to be a more natural approach to spirituality. I’m pleased to say that the more I research the pagan ways, the more I truly feel that it is a path I was meant to follow. In my childhood religion, the word pagan was synonymous with unspiritual – not quite evil, but certainly not something anyone would want to be associated with. What astounds me most about this, is the fact that every Christian holiday has its roots buried deep within the realms of the pagan festivities. Of course, this was done in order to make Christianity more palatable to the pagans, but in fact it has actually made it easier for me to go back to the old ways, as each Sabbat contains elements of the holidays that I was brought up with.

A few weeks ago I had a conversation with my Mum. She mentioned that my Grandad (her Dad) had been a pagan. He died when I was sixteen, although I hadn’t seen him since I was three. I was sad for all the conversations I couldn’t have with him on the subject of spirituality, as well as all the knowledge he would have passed on, but in a way I felt more connected to him, as if pieces of the puzzle were starting to come together.

Along with the pagan way of life, I have also been delving into witchcraft. Again, previously synonymous with evil and unspiritual, I have found it to be a very natural progression in the way I live my life. At first I was merely interested in herbal remedies for my family, but this interest graduated into exploring how invoking different deities can have an effect on these remedies. I’m currently exploring which spirits I most feel an affinity with, as it’s a very personal two-way relationship. I do have a particular interest in the Faeries, although that doesn’t necessarily mean that they are interested in me! In Catholicism people would graduate towards particular Angels or Saints, asking them to intercede for them and grant favours. Invoking spirits for favours/blessings is no different, although caution should be taken, as some spirits can be quite mischievous if they aren’t handled in the correct way. I’m finding Judika Illes’ book Encyclopedia of Spirits to be very detailed and informative.

Witchcraft is an umbrella term for so many different forms of magick. The Wiccan rede includes the phrase “harm none”, which I think is just good common sense, no matter what your beliefs are. I’m still researching most areas, finding which ones appeal to me the most. Botanicals and moon magick are up there, and I’m looking forward to the arrival of my first deck of tarot cards. I’ve been reading about different types of witch, and can confidently say that I’m likely to remain a solitary, walking my own path and not following any set tradition. Looking at the different profiles I’d say I flit between the Kitchen Witch and Hedge Witch depictions.

If you read my Feeling Bookish post, you’ll know the relationship I have with books. In this instance they are more of a friend than ever, as I truly believe that knowledge is power. I’ve read/am reading multiple books on the Sabbats and magick, cross-referencing everything to make sure I know what I’m doing. It was my birthday this month, and I was kindly gifted some new reading material, as well as some money – which I of course spent on books!

I believe we all have magick in us. Some are more in-tune to it than others, much in the same way some of us are great dancers and others have two left feet! I’m enjoying exploring the magick within, and already incorporating it into my everyday life. As I grow more confident in my practice, I’ll be sharing my experiences here. How will you explore your inner magick?

An Ostara Celebration

The Spring Equinox is upon us, bringing lengthening days and the hope of a fruitful growing season. Light and dark are equal, bringing balance for a fleeting moment, before the light triumphs. Seeds are sprouting tiny green shoots, trees are budding, and animals are emerging from their dens. The earth is warming up; nature’s incubator at the ready.

As with the other festivals on the Wheel of the Year, I wanted to mark the occasion. The wonderful thing about the pagan festivities is that they open themselves up to so many different ways of honouring them. I decided to keep it fairly simple, since I’m only starting out. I have my eye on some more involved rituals for future celebrations, but for now my priority is getting a feel for each Sabbat and identifying which facets work for me.

I focussed on some of the more well-known symbols of Ostara:

  • eggs and rabbits/hares for fertility
  • candles to welcome back the light
  • flowers as a representation of the warming earth and its bounty

Myself and my wee rays dyed some boiled eggs last night, then feasted on them for breakfast this morning. The children squealed with delight as I served them up – I foresee colourful breakfasts becoming a more regular affair!

As the children ate, I read to them from Wendy Pfeffer’s A New Beginning: Celebrating the Spring Equinox. We learned how people celebrated the end of Winter thousands of years ago, and how different cultures had their own rituals – some of which still hold fast today!

We then set up a mini Ostara altar, using an empty egg carton for the main structure. We filled it with some of the colourful eggs, chocolate mini eggs, candles, and flowers. My littlest-middle helped me to collect some moss from the garden, and we added that too.

I also had the main display set up in the living room – flowers, more candles and chocolate eggs, a wooden rabbit (procured from my littlest ray’s toy box for the day), and my celebration ring (adorned with a bee, a ladybird, and a butterfly.)

When the children arrived home from school, we scampered into the garden, where we planted some seeds at the time the equinox occurred. (16:15) While doing so, we conducted a growing spell, summoning the elements to bestow on us a plentiful growing season.

We then came in for dinner – mini quiches, followed by chocolate mini eggs for pudding…all in keeping with the egg symbolism.

After dinner, we all traipsed into the girls’ bedroom, where we had a lovely view of the sun setting before bedtime.

Here in Scotland, we had a beautiful day for our Ostara celebrations. It was an apt welcome to the growing season, and hopefully a sign of things to come.

Happy Ostara to you all!

Whimsical Wednesday: Spring Invitations

Today my children and I spotted the first shoots of the Spring bulbs that we planted back in September. It seems hard to believe, given that we celebrated the shortest day less than three weeks ago! In another three weeks we celebrate Imbolc, the first day of Spring. At this time of year I usually turn my thoughts to Spring cleaning, DIY jobs around the house and (my favourite) gardening.

As I was researching Imbolc and the different ways we can celebrate it, I was delighted to find that I already did most of them, year after year. The pagan in me has clearly been there all along! In the run up to Imbolc, I decided to compile a wee list of activities/jobs that will prepare me for the arrival of Spring.

  1. Light candles to welcome back the light. (These can be battery operated ones – essential for when my little rays are about.)
  2. Clean all corners of the house. Blow those cobwebs away and prepare for new beginnings.
  3. Reorganise areas of the house to maximise order. (Also known as organised chaos in our house!)
  4. Organise routines/schedules and regularly review them.
  5. Soak in a herb and milk bath as a way of cleansing the body.
  6. Plant seeds, both indoors and out – welcome new growth.
  7. Set up a mini altar, using appropriate items to depict the season/festival. (I’ll be using my new celebration ring for this.)
  8.  Talk about the life cycle of a plant with my children. Look at age appropriate activities to further enhance their learning.
  9. Bake a seed cake.
  10. Create a family Spring-themed mood board. 
  11. Take a trip to the walled garden in our local park. Look out for signs of Spring approaching. 
  12. Cast a growth spell, in order that our growing season will prove fertile.
  13. Read Tree by Britta Teekentrup – a wonderful book that depicts the changing seasons.
  14. Talk about the goddess Brigid and her significance in the natural world.

    This is just a snapshot of the things I can do to prepare for the new season. I’m sure as the days pass, I’ll add more to the list. As will my children – they like to get involved and we spend many a school run discussing the finer details! I’m really looking forward to celebrating Imbolc, but for now I can get on with my preparations and embrace the coming of Spring and the promise of new life. 

    What are your Springtime rituals?

    Winter Solstice FestivitiesĀ 

    As part of the get-back-to-nature/at-one-with-the-elements lifestyle I’m aiming to lead, I’ve been looking at the pagan festivities and the relevance they hold in our lives today. Today, December 21st, marks the Winter Solstice – the shortest day of the year. This is when the northern part of the earth tilts away from the sun, and the sun is at its lowest point on the horizon; meaning the fewest hours of daylight.

    Thousands of years ago, people didn’t understand how the earth moves around the sun. They panicked when the days grew shorter, and fretted over whether the sun would return. In fairness to them, they had every right to fret – they needed the sun for warmth, light, and to grow food. As a way of appealing to their gods to return the sun, people held long ceremonies and festivals. Many of these rituals still hold fast today, although the festivities are associated with different names, depending on your beliefs. 

    In some traditions, today sees the great battle between the Holly King (who represents the dark) and the Oak King (who represents the light.) The Oak King is triumphant, bringing the return of the light. When the Summer Solstice comes round, the Holly King will reclaim his crown, bringing the darker days once again. 

    I decided that I wanted to mark today with my family. My children go to a Catholic school (as it was the best school in our catchment), and they have been learning about the religious take on the winter festivities (Christmas!) I thought it would be fun to do something a bit different, whilst at the same time looking at the similarities. 

    We started out by having a family story. This lovely book by Wendy Pfeffer tells of how the Winter Solstice was first calculated by astronomers, and the different ways that people celebrated it over the millennia.

    The children were engaged with the story – most of it anyway (stuck earlier in traffic for an hour and half at lunchtime, they were a bit over-excited!) They loved hearing about how people worried that the sun wouldn’t return, and thought that they must have been silly people! I explained that the sun was the main source of food, and that without it, the people would starve – as would also be the case today! This sobered them up a bit, probably as they thought about how long it took them to get lunch earlier!

    This talk of food led us on to a discussion of our Winter Solstice feast. We were having pork stew, as a nod to the wild boar hunts held at this time of year. My littlest-middle ray loves to help with the cooking, so she and I trotted off to the kitchen to begin preparing it.

    The next part of our feast was a gingerbread house. Ginger is known for its warming properties (although wasn’t found in Europe until the early 1100s), so very fitting for a celebration of light and warmth. Usually we make our annual gingerbread house from scratch, but I knew we would be short on time this year. After our afternoon gridlock extravaganza (I promise I’ll stop going on about it now šŸ˜‰) I was glad I’d bought a pre-made kit instead! We set to work decorating the panels, and then assembled it. It turned out just as I’d hoped it would – wonderfully wonky, with sweets sliding down the not-quite-dry icing. Perfectly imperfect! 

    Whilst we waited for the icing to dry, and for our stew to finish bubbling, we thought we’d have another go at some magick! Since the return of the light is a time for new beginnings, we all wrote down a New Year’s resolution on a piece of paper (pentacle on the back again) and folded it in three. We then scampered outside to our little barbecue bucket, where my husband was once again sparking up the flint and steel. We formed our circle and chanted: May this Solstice and turning of the wheel bring you love, peace, and good fortune in the coming year. Let us welcome the returning sun with Hope and Joy. May you never thirst! We then threw our resolutions on the fire and welcomed back the light. 

    Although it was dark by this time, our next job was to collect some holly and rosemary from the garden and bring it indoors. The tradition of bringing greenery indoors came long before we started decorating trees. The holly signifies the Holly King’s defeat and his handing over of the crown to the Oak King. Rosemary is known for attracting good energies, and was the traditional gift on New Year’s day. We brought a twig of each inside and lit our Winter Solstice candle next to the jar (taking care not to set it too close!)

    We then set the table and enjoyed our yummy pork stew together. A festivity isn’t complete, without family or friends to share it with. 

    I did plan for us to do so much more by way of celebrating the day. We were going to make bird feeders, sun salutation masks, as well as drink mulled apple juice and have cosy, quiet reflection time with candles and music. You can’t do everything though, plus I felt we managed to fit in quite a bit, considering we also have a baby to attend to. It also means we have the celebrations for next year all organised!

    Here’s a picture of said baby being mischievous!

    A very happy, light-filled Winter Solstice to you all! How did you celebrate?