Wheel of the Year

The energy of Samhain

Samhain (pronouced sow-ein) is one of the eight seasonal festivals that make up the wheel of the year, an ancient way of observing the yearly cycle, and the transition of the sun and the seasons. Samhain is celebrated at the end of October/beginning of November (the origins of modern day Halloween) and marks the final harvest period of the year and the birth of the Winter. At this time of year we can observe the natural world preparing for the Winter months that stretch ahead. Trees lose their leaves, plants die back, and animals stock up and may begin to migrate or hibernate.

Samhain was considered both the end and the beginning of the Celtic New Year, honouring the understanding that all new life and beginnings, emerge from endings.

For me, acknowledging the 8 festivals throughout the yearly cycle provides points at which I stop and observe what is going on in the outer world as well as my inner world. A moment to reflect on how things currently are, how they have been over the last season and how I would like to move ahead into the new one.

My most precious insight from observing the wheel of the year is the element of change within it. Light and dark, growth and decay, beginnings and endings. In the modern world we are often expected to be as productive and efficient no matter the season. A striving towards a fixed state of happiness, vibrancy and certainty that isn’t present in the natural world, certainly not all year round.

At Samhain, the hours of darkness outweigh the hours of light as the Sun’s strength and energy wanes. It marks the end of the growth part of the year’s cycle. The seeds of the harvest have now fallen and lay dormant deep within the dark earth before they emerge in Spring.

Observing the energy of each season can guide us to reflect on those themes in our own lives. At Samhain these may include endings, letting go, losses and the lessons we have learned from adversity. We may feel called to embrace rest, wind down and nourish ourselves whilst dreaming of what the seeds of next year’s growth may hold.

Some seasons may feel easier to connect with than others, depending where we are at. Some may pass us by without much significance while we feel much more aligned to others.

We have felt especially connected to Samhain energy this year, crafting jewellery from Yew and Elder wood, gathering apples, cooking hearty meals and exploring damp and mossy woodlands.

You can find out more about our Samhain offerings on Instagram or our Etsy Store now.

Wellbeing, Wheel of the Year

Beltane

The next festival in our Wheel of the Year journey is Beltane or May day, celebrated From the evening of April 30th to May 1st in the Northern hemisphere. Beltane is the peak of Spring, a celebration of fertility and the height of the earth’s growing energy. At this time of year we begin to see the very first signs of Summer emerging.

This is a time of abundance, union and life force. Flowers are blooming, new life is being born and the Sun’s strength is increasing. This is a fertile time in the natural world, and can help us to ignite projects, cultivate new actions and reflect on what we need to bloom. This increase in active energy, can leave us feeling a little worn out at times, so it is good time to ensure rest, self care and nourishment is established to balance this busy time.

Our Beltane Seasonal Wellbeing guide is available now with journal prompts and guided practices to help you connect with the energy of the season.

Beltane blessings!

Wellbeing, Wheel of the Year

Imbolc

Traditionally celebrated over 1st and 2nd of February in the Northern Hemisphere, Imbolc marks the earliest signs of Spring and falls midway between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox. At this time, the earth is beginning to awaken from Winter’s slumber. Light is increasing, encouraging changes in the behaviour of our animal friends. Most growth is still occurring in the darkness of the Earth’s belly but some little pioneer plants bloom first, signalling the quickening of the year.

Imbolc is a period of transition. The inward focus of the Winter months making way to a more external focus of growth once again. A tender time where we tentatively begin looking outwards towards the coming months. It can feel challenging or overwhelming particularly if we are feeling under nourished.

This can be a good time to assess where we require more rest or support. To clear space in our homes and lives to make way for what’s to come. And to reflect on the things that light us up, restore our energy and tend to our ground ready to welcome the tender new shoots of Spring.

For guided Mindfulness practices and journal prompts inspired by the season of Imbolc, you can download our Imbolc Wellbeing Guide now.

Wellbeing, Wheel of the Year

Winter Solstice

We have now arrived at the darkest day of the year in the Northern hemisphere. Energy and light levels are low. Today the sun stands still at its furthest point, before slowly returning once more with its light and warmth.

It has been a strange year, perhaps the strangest so far so we do hope you find some moments over this time to rest, and tend to yourselves.

Alongside our Winter Solstice/Yule Wellbeing Guide, we have also filmed a short Mindful Moment in Nature video which you can find a link to in the guide.

We have created these with love, to capture the peace we experience in nature and hope they support you too.

Wheel of the Year

Samhain Celebration Box

As the wheel of the year turns towards Samhain, we have been busy creating an offering that is intended to help you honour and welcome the new season with a little plant and candle magick!

Samhain is the third and final harvest and the end of the growth period. The light continues to wane and winter’s presence is born. Our Samhain box is centred around protection and resilience with a touch of magick as we journey into the darkness.

Find them in our ETSY store.

Continue reading “Samhain Celebration Box”
Astrological

Libra season

The wheel of the year turns once more as we arrive at the Autumn Equinox. Day and night length reach balance as the sun moves into the seventh sign of the zodiac – Libra. The sun remains in Libra until 22nd October where it will transition to watery Scorpio.

It is no surprise given the timing of the season that Libra is characterised by balance. As Libra is an air sign, which is connected to thoughts and mental energy, Libra can be associated with consideration, weighing things up and trying to come to a fair solution for all.

Sometimes this may present itself as indecisiveness or a desire for things to be just, in balance and not to rock the boat.

Libra is the first sign of the Autumn and the sign that paves our entry to the darker half of the year. To celebrate we have created a darker version of our star sign print that is available to order via instagram before it goes into our shop later the the season.

Botanicals, Wheel of the Year

Autumn Equinox Celebration Box

As the wheel of the year turns towards the Autumn Equinox next month, we have been busy creating an offering that is intended to help you celebrate and welcome the new season with a little plant and crystal magick.

Continue reading “Autumn Equinox Celebration Box”
Wellbeing, Wheel of the Year

Transitioning to Autumn

According to earth-based traditions, the upcoming Autumn Equinox marks the transition from an outward focus of growth and energy to an inward one. But what does this actually mean?

If we look to nature at this time, we will notice that the active growth of Spring and Summer is beginning to wane. The energetic greens, are transitioning to the oranges, browns and reds of Autumn as the hours of daylight continue to recede.

The word equinox stems from the Latin meaning ‘equal night’ the point at which day and night length are in balance. After this point, night length continues to increase and we see the balance tip towards darkness, this time onward is referred to as the ‘dark half’ of the year.

In the natural world we may recognise that the earth is starting to slow down and retreat inwards. Animals hibernate, leaves fall, and energy returns back down underground to the roots. The focus is no longer on expansion, or outward growth but on receding, rest and nourishment.

When we live seasonally, we may notice the invitation to also begin slowing down around this time. Our energy changes, and we may feel the urge to hibernate too. Some find it easier to adjust to the seasonal transition than others, and it can evoke feelings of loss or sadness at the end of another Summer.

In the run up to the Autumn Equinox I am going to be sharing some practices that I have found helpful to ease this seasonal transition and celebrate the season ahead. We will also be sharing our free seasonal wellbeing guide so stay tuned.

Wellbeing, Wheel of the Year

Lammas

Lammas (also known as Lughnassadh) falls on 1st August and is the midpoint between the Summer Solstice and the Autumn Equinox in the northern Hemisphere. By Lammas we are into the second half of the year and may refer to this time as ‘high summer.’ The days are still long and the sun’s energy is strong yet active growth is waning. The earth is abundant and many of our grain crops have ripened and await their gathering, full and golden.

Traditionally Lammas is thought of as the first of 3 harvests; the grain harvest. This is followed by the second harvest of fruits at the Autumn equinox and the final harvest of nuts and berries occuring at Samhain.

Despite the suns waning energy, this time of year is often marked by celebration; festivals, fairs and gatherings that honour local produce, celebrate the remaining light and acknowledge the ease of abundant times.

Being aware of what is going on in our outer world can help us to connect to and learn more about our inner worlds. In this article I will discuss where we currently are in the seasonal cycle and suggest ways in which we can use this to cultivate inner reflection and growth.

Element: Fire + Water

This time of year is associated with the energy of both fire and water elements. The seeds of the grain to be harvested hold both the ignition and transformation of fire energy and the nourishment and fullness provided by water energy.

As with all the elements, fire and water energies possess more and less helpful qualities. When in balance they can encourage transformation, growth, nourishment, fulfilment and fullness. In excess these elements can bring an intensity or chaoticness to our emotions and feelings of overwhelm and heaviness.

Outer observations

The word I have chosen to summarise this time of year is: abundance. All around us, the earth is reaching fullness. Our fields have transitioned from the vibrant greens of Spring and early Summer to rich golds and yellows that signal ripe and readiness. Animals are fledging,  blossom has given way to fattening fruits and there is a sense of ease and ‘enough’ for all in the natural world.

Inner reflections

The time of year can be a guide for inner reflection. It may help to spend some time in nature, and just notice and observe the season that we are in. What words would you use to describe it? Be aware of what feelings it brings up for you. This will be different for us all, depending on where we are in our journey.

You can download our Lammas Wellbeing Guide with journal prompts and reflections to help you connect with the new season here.