Dearest moonbeams, we have our final new moon of the year and decade this week! On Dec 26th we have a special New Moon Annular Solar Eclipse in Capricorn! Only a few days after the winter solstice (darkest day of the year) we have another opportunity to connect to the dark with this annular eclipse where the moon will darken the sun. Eclipses always offer us an opportunity to work with our shadows and bravely look at the aspects of ourselves that are holding us back from stepping into our power.
Capricorn is a feminine Earth sign, ruled by the planet Saturn. It's a cardinal sign and initiates Winter in the Northern hemisphere and Summer in the Southern hemisphere. Saturn rules organization, structure and practicality. Capricorn is the final of the Earth signs and therefore carries a mature and wise energy.
Capricorn is represented by the constellation of the seagoat. As always, we can draw powerful messages from astrological imagery. The seagoat represents the combination of the earthly, practical life (the goat) with the soul life (fish tale). This provides us with the wonderful opportunity to reflect on the balance between our work life and our soul life before we head into 2020. Is our soul life something that we just squeeze in as and when we can? Or is it with us all day? What's our soul purpose and soul calling? Are we dedicated to it? Capricorns integrate their spirituality and soul purpose into their daily life. This is a beautiful quality and gives them this wise, grounded and magical energy. They also have the dedication and focus of the mountain goat and therefore are hard working and able to carry out their goals. Are we lacking in determination and focus? We will unpack this more in our journaling prompts.
Capricorn season is a time to connect to the darkness of winter, to the dark Goddesses and the idea of learning to love the dark and all the wisdom it contains. Connect with the powerful Goddess Cailleach, she rules the winter, death and release and represents the archetype of the Crone. What wisdom is waiting for you in the dark of the winter forest and how can you slow down enough to hear it? Just like the winter trees, can you strip back your layers and bare your soul without the distractions of busy summer months to cover you up. Who are you underneath it all? In modern society we have forgotten how to sit with silence, stillness, ageing, the dark and death - how can we learn to stop shying away from these incredibly magical times and use them to transform and transcend?
'The cave your fear to enter, holds the treasure you seek.' - Joseph Campbell
It might be a little bit tricky to make time on Boxing day for journaling so see how you go, you can always do it during the days after the eclipse. Get cosy, grab a comforting warm drink and your journal from this year and light some candles.
- Spend some time looking over your moon journal from this year. With an honest and open heart analise your intentions/goals each month. Were you able to stick to them/ follow through with them? If so, what did you gain from doing this? Any interesting insights? If you weren't able to can you see a pattern of why you weren't able to? What kept getting in the way? Can you identify your blockages and fear? Were there any breakthroughs this year?
- As we've spoken about, Capricorn invites us to turn inwards and ask what our soul purpose is. Dedicate a page in your journal for your soul purpose, draw, write, collage!
- Do we make time to tend to our soul life? What nourishes your soul? How could you dedicate time over the winter to nourish your soul?
- Where are you leaking energy? If you don't have a lot of time to dedicate to your soul purpose, ask yourself why this is? Sometimes, it's unavoidable but sometimes it's due to a lack of boundaries or taking on other people's stuff. How can you establish better boundaries for 2020? What would they look like?
- How much does what other's think of you effect the choices and decisions you make? How could you listen to your soul more and the noise of the outside world less? Connect to the wisdom of winter and the archetype of the crone, trust your deep inner knowing and guidance.
- What are your unique gifts and how could you use these next year?
- What wisdom have you gathered from the experiences of the last year and decade? What and who are you grateful for for gifting you this wisdom?
- How could you make more time for silence and stillness?
Winter Spice Latte
Mmmmmm this is a deliciously satisfying winter warmer and has the benefits o boosting immunity, easing joint and muscle pain and boosting circulation:
Non dairy milk of your choice
Handful of star Anise
1 Cinnamon stick
A few Cardamon Pods
1 tsp rose petals
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
Heat your milk in a pan on a low heat and add all your ingredients apart from the cinnamon stick. Infuse your milk for about 7-10 minutes ensuring that the milk doesn't come to the boil. Then use a milk frother or add to a blender to froth. Serve in your favourite mug and dust with Cinnamon and then add in your cinnamon stick.
This is a delightful alternative to mulled wine if you're in need of a break from alcohol or just want to be able to enjoy mulled wine all day long. Here's our recipe:
- Mulled Juice - this is usually available in supermarkets at this time of year. If you can't get Christmas mulled juice you can mix orange juice and apple juice together.
- a couple of slices of orange
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- a few pieces of star anise
- Mulled wine spice (you can buy sachets of this from most shops)
This can be made in a slow cooker or stove top, or if you're in a hurry you can simply use boiling water and mix it all together in tea pot.
In a large pan or in your slow cooker, use equal parts juice to boiling water and simmer on a low heat. Add in the orange slices, mulled spice sachet, cinnamon sticks and star anise and allow to steep for at least 10 minutes. If you're using a slow cooker you can keep this on all day so it gets more infused as the day goes on, perfect if you're hosting.
Wishing you a blessed New Moon dear ones. We'll be back again soon! xx
Blessed Solstice everyone! Winter Solstice, also referred to as Alban Arthan is a truly magical time of year, it’s a time for quiet, for reflection and for magic. Winter Solstice marks the shortest day and the longest night and at Yule we celebrate the beginning of longer days and the rebirth of the sun. At the heart of all the stories, folklore and imagery associated with this time of year is the concept that there will be light again after the dark. Connecting to the Celtic wheel of the year by honouring the 8 sabbats, helps us to understand the cyclic nature of life. Winter time can be a difficult time of year for people for lots of different reasons, taking a moment to pause at the Winter Solstice and remember that there will be light again and that life is by it’s very nature transient can help us to find peace, calm and comfort during tough times. Many of the traditions associated with Yule continue to this day and we might find it surprising that things like bringing evergreens into the home, crafting wreaths and Yule logs all have pagan roots.
The tradition of bringing evergreen plants into the home was to help people stay connected to nature and nature spirits during the dark and biting cold winter months. Wreaths were created with specially chosen herbs and plants, were blessed and then placed on the door and within the home to offer protection. Mistletoe is believed to have healing and protective qualities as well as representing fertility, Holly was used for protection against harmful spirits and Ivy represents immortality.
The Winter Solstice is a quiet time of year where nature sleeps, many animals are hibernating, the trees are bare and seeds lie under the soil, full of potential and promise and some are yet to even be planted. Solstice means ‘standstill’, and it’s wonderful to connect to this ancient festival and carve out some time for stillness and quiet reflection. Winter Solstice is a time where we get to look back on the year and reflect on the lessons we’ve learnt, the relationships we’ve cultivated, the things that haven’t worked out and to count our blessings. This year we can reflect on an entire decade if we choose as we are heading into a brand new decade next year.
December nowadays is rife with busyness, expectations and stress, internally our body knows that this is a time for rest and nourishment yet externally we are expected to meet work deadlines, attend parties, battle through bugs and illnesses and do all of this whilst maintaining a ‘holly jolly’ attitude. It’s no wonder we get to January and often feel exhausted and burnt out and are then faced with all the marketing pressures to detox and live our best life for the upcoming new year. Turning away from the fast paced pressures of modern society and taking inspiration from our ancient roots can help to bring us back to ourselves and to create our own calm.
A simple Yule ritual
One of the simplest ways to celebrate Yule is with candle magic. Choose a candle
that is either white, gold or ivory and set it somewhere where it’s safe. You might
like to decorate your candle or place it in a bowl with items that symbolise this
time of year such as pine cones, spruce, cinnamon sticks and dried orange slices,
just make sure this is done in a way where nothing is in danger of catching on
fire! Sit down in front of your candle, close your eyes and take a few deep breaths
- if you prefer you can hold the candle between your hands. Before lighting your
candle, infuse it with your intentions for the coming months, if you’re not sure what
those look like yet you can simply dedicate to the light - light within you and light
around you. Part of Yule is wishing for peace and happiness for others too so take
a moment to wish your loved ones peace, light and well-being. Open your eyes
and mindfully light your candle, as you watch the flame taking shape focus on your
wishes and intentions. Either leave your candle to burn out completely or extinguish
with a candle snuffer, try not to blow the candle out.
Winter Solstice Journalling Prompts
Journalling is a wonderful winter time activity as it’s really in harmony with the reflective qualities of this season. Here are a few guiding questions to help you get connect the magic of Midwinter:
- Winter is a time for dreaming, storytelling and for magic, how could you welcome this into your life over the next couple of months?
- What’s your relationship to rest? Do you let yourself rest in the winter or do you push through tiredness and illness? How could you make space for rest? What can wait for the warmer months?
- Create a reading list for the next few months
- Winter is a time we need warmth and light, energetically speaking what is going to keep you warm and light this winter?
- Looking back on the last decade, what are you grateful for? What are you most proud of? What have been your biggest lessons?
- What mental habits are you wanting to break free from as you head into 2020?
- What are your hopes and dreams for next year
Winter provides the ideal opportunity to create a staycation! A staycation is where you do the kinds of things you would give yourself permission to do on holiday such as cradling a cup of tea whilst looking out at the landscape, reading for hours on end, having sleep ins and early nights, playing board games, eating nourishing food that you've taken time to prepare, painting or drawing and listening to audio books. The joy of a staycation is doing all of this from the comfort of your home...which is perfect in the winter time. Boundaries are important during a staycation, so limiting time on social media like you would do on holiday and packing away anything that reminds you of work or daily life chores. It's so important to invest in rest over the winter months to really give back to your mind, body and soul!
"It takes courage to say yes to rest and play in a culture that views exhaustion as a status symbol." - Brene Brown
Winter Solstice Essential Oils
Try this blend of essential oils in either a body oil or in a diffuser. It really captures the releasing and peaceful qualities of winter:
Clary Sage 1 drop
Lavender 1 drop
Cedarwood 1 drop
Juniper Berry 1 drop
Roman chamomile 1 drop
25ml carrier oil
Clary Sage 1 drop
Lavender 4 drop
Cedarwood 3 drop
Juniper Berry 2 drop
Roman chamomile 2 drop
Make time for Magic
Winter has long been associated with magic, fairytales and wonder. The quiet and cosy winter months can be a time to really feed your imagination as a way to fuel your projects and plans for next year but also because it is good for the soul! Stock up on fairytale books, watch movies that take you on adventures and get lost in folklore. Winter is also a time associated with dreaming, a perfect time to start keeping a dream journal and developing your intuition.
Wishing you all a blessed Solstice, tomorrow the sun enters Capricorn and we begin Capricorn season. We are also entering the dark phase of the moon so go gently with yourself, the combination of the shortest day and the dark phase of the lunar cycle is a double whammy on top of already being tired in the lead up to Christmas. Self-care, rest and nourishment is key. Take care moonbeams x
Dearest moonbeams, today we welcome in the final full moon of the year and also the decade. The December full moon is also known as the cold moon and is in the sign of Gemini. We have the sun in the fire sign Sagittarius and the moon in the air sign Gemini - both are masculine signs and both are to do with the mind. Both Sagittarius and Gemini are inquisitive, curious and mentally expansive. Gemini also rules communication so it's interesting here to work with combining the philosopher archetype of Sagittarius with the ability to communicate our ideas out into the world.
With it being the final full moon of the decade, we have the opportunity to reflect on the last ten years and ask ourselves what we've learned about ourselves, what patterns can we identify as holding us back? what old ways need to die in order for us to grow new things for 2020 and the next decade? Journaling couldn't be more important than it is right now, have a look back at where you were 10 years ago this month, what were you doing? What were your goals/wishes/desires? Have any of them come to being? How many new people have come into your life? What relationships have ended or changed? Read back over old journals and diaries, look through old photos and really connect to how transient life is. Just like the moon and the seasons, life is always in a state of motion, of change and evolution, of ebb and flow. If things are difficult for you right now, take comfort in the fact that this too will pass, this will become another chapter in our incredible story, the difficult times are what shape us and make us strong and sometimes even lead us to unexpected and happy places.
A key theme for Gemini is truth and honest communication and sometimes that communication can be to do with how we view ourselves, the conversations we're having with ourselves and whether or not we're being honest with our self. When the full moon is out, there's nowhere to hide, this can be a powerful time for looking at our shadows - shine the light of the moon on your inner darkness. Use the reflection of the last decade to ask yourself honest questions, before doing so, place your hands on your heart and take some deep breaths, allow your mind to drop down into your heart space and answer the questions from there:
What is holding you back from having harmonious relationships?
What is holding you back from following your dreams?
What haven't you forgiven?
What do you wish you could say sorry about?
What do you need to forgive yourself for?
What are your regrets?
What are you proud of?
What are you deepest desires?
What is your joy?
On Gemini moon days it's easy to get caught up in our thoughts, Gemini has a mercurial energy to it which can leave us feeling ungrounded and mentally overwhelmed, add this to the busyness of the lead up to Christmas and hello frazzled mind. It's a really good idea on Gemini moon days to bring ourselves back into our body and do things that will calm and focus the mind. Think of the idea of using the arrow and focus of Sagittarius to focus the somewhat flighty tendencies of Gemini. Using practices such as Yoga Nidra, guided meditations and gentle yoga can be really helpful for slowing the mind down. Also, when it comes to tackling Christmas tasks, try to focus on one thing at a time, write lists or use a bullet journal to give yourself the satisfaction of ticking things off. Try not to flit from one unfinished task to the other, just like leaving loads of tabs open and programmes running on your computer slows it down, it's the same for our mind too.
The combination of Sagittarius and Gemini can also lead us to get over excited about new ideas and ventures, so check-in with yourself honestly about whether or not you're taking on too much? Can some things wait? Are you honouring the season of winter and the need to rest? Sometimes it can be so hard with all the pressures of social media to not want to jump into new things straight away, one of our favourite quotes is "Do less, be more" - can we let go and soften a little bit and pick up the pace again in Spring? Or is our gut telling us that now really is the right time? Only you can know :)
Gemini is an AIR sign so why not use sacred smoke cleansing practices to cleanse your home, your oracle cards and crystals and to do a ritual of letting go. Use incense, resins or herb bundles to clear negative, old or unwanted energy. Afterwards light a white candle which represents the way you'd like to feel moving forward or the things you want to welcome in. The candle can also represent the fire element of Sagittarius.
"Gather your burdens in a basket in your heart. Set them at the feet of the mother. Say 'Take this, Great Mama, because I cannot carry all this shit for another minute.' And then crawl into her broad lap and nestle against her ample bosom and take a nap. When you wake, the basket will still be there, but half it's contents will be gone, and the other half will have resumed their ordinary shapes and sizes, no longer masquerading as catastrophic, epic, chronic, and toxic. The mother will clear things out and tidy up. She will take your compulsions and transmute them. But only if you freely offer them to her." - Wild Mercy by Mirabai Starr
Gemini rules the shoulders, arms and hands and it's easy at this time of the year to feel like we have the weight of the world on our shoulders or that we're juggling too many things. Make sure you're taking time out for yourself, meditate, listen to relaxing music, read, get a massage and take baths. Sometime over the next few days, if you have access to one, run yourself a cleansing epsom salts bath to help soothe tense and tired muscles and gently detox the body. Add rose and geranium essential oils to help you de-stress and bring you back into your heart space.
Wishing you a blessed final full moon of the year dear ones. Be gentle with yourselves and loving to those around you. We'll be back soon with the launch of our e-Zine and also our blog for the Winter Solstice!
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