Thurs. Dec. 23, 2021: Nameless Day and Changeable Weather

image courtesy of Hans via pixabay.com

Thursday, December 23, 2021

Third Quarter Waning Moon in Leo

Uranus and Venus Retrograde

Nameless Day

Today is known as “Nameless Day” in the Celtic Tree calendar. It’s between the Tree Month of Elder and the Tree Month of Birch. Mistletoe is associated with today. It’s a “between times” day. It’s the day of unshaped potential, and a good day to decide what it is you want to manifest.

The weather is so changeable here. It reminds me of Scotland, where it’s lovely one minute and then stormy the next. We’d been warned that winters were gray and stark here, and we’ve gotten off easy so far, so I am not complaining.

Since we are on the second floor, I enjoy watching the weather from our large windows, or the porch or the back balcony. I love being able to watch the mountains.

The Winter Solstice was a gorgeous day, and I got a good many of my cookie platters delivered. It was delightful to be out and about.

Yesterday was rainy and raw, so I stayed in and baked; that means I have to push to finish all the deliveries and errands by today.

We still have plants on the front porch, because it hasn’t been all that cold. The Mother’s Tongue was getting too much sun, and didn’t like it, so we brought it in and put it in the sewing room, where it’s recovering like a Victorian heroine.

We don’t have a working fireplace in this house, so we couldn’t burn the greens saved from last year. Instead, I took my big cauldron out on the back balcony, and slowly, branch by branch, burned the greens. I didn’t want flames or a lot of smoke to worry the neighbors. But it was done, and a nice psychological tool to release the past year, and the stress of the move, and the life on Cape Cod.

I’m curious to see what this winter brings. It’s been warmer and milder than usual (my heat bill is happy). But we’re supposed to have a couple of weeks of bad weather before it levels out again.

Fingers crossed I can watch most of it from my window, rather than going out in it.

Have a lovely, peaceful, joyful holiday weekend.

Thurs. Dec. 17, 2020: Snow At Night Makes for a Cozy Day

image courtesy of Jill Wellington via pixabay.com

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Waxing First Quarter Moon in Capricorn

Celtic Tree Month of Elder

Snowy and cold

We had our first substantial snowstorm of the season overnight. Although, so far, it’s not as bad as predicted, it’s heavy, wet snow, and I’m not looking forward to going out there and shoveling later.

Since we were warned about the storm, I did not put up the lights and outdoor decorations yet. That is on the agenda for this coming weekend.

Today, we are tucked home, enjoying the tree and the indoor decorations, reading, and writing, and resting. With the bulk of the stress done for the holiday season – I just have to get the annual inspection for the car done next week, and, yes, with an old car, I’m worried – we can sit back and enjoy. There’s been so much stress and pain in this year, that capturing a few hours of enjoyment here and there is high on the agenda.

One of the things we love is to sit by the fire, with one of our favorite blankets, a good book, the cats, the fire going in the fireplace, and a cup of cocoa or a glass of wine. it’s a simple pleasure, and yet so resonant.

Next Monday is the Solstice, my big celebration, and I’m excited and looking forward to it. Much as I love the dark time of the year, I am ready for the return of light and hope.

Peace, friends.

Thurs. Dec. 3, 2020: Holiday Decorating

photo by Devon Ellington

Thursday, December 3, 2020

Third Quarter Waning Moon in Cancer

Uranus Retrograde

Cloudy and cold

Not much to report on the garden at all this week. We’ve had a series of storms coming through. My neighbors spend all their time leaf blowing, and then the wind just blows leaves all around because THEY DON’T HAUL THEM AWAY. As usual, doing everything half-assed and spending hours creating noise pollution that does nothing.

I haven’t finished taking in things from the deck, although I will probably do so this weekend. Because of the storms, I’ve delayed putting up the exterior decorations, something else I hope to get done this weekend, although we’re supposed to have more storms.

I suppose I should be grateful it’s all rain and not snow.

The lemon seeds have not sprouted. I’m not sure if it’s because the lemons weren’t actually organic, as marked, and these are sterile seeds, or because it’s off season. They’re in a lovely pot in a warm, sunny window.

I find it alarming that so much seed-saving from grocery-bought food now yields nothing. Too many sterile seeds, and too much corporate control of our food supply.

I’m designing fictional gardens for several stories right now, and thoroughly enjoying it. If there isn’t much to say, plant-wise, over the winter, maybe I’ll share some of that.

The Thanksgiving/Christmas cacti are blossoming, though. They are beautiful, and make us happy every time we walk into a room and see them.

We don’t have real Poinsettias because of the cats. We do have an artificial one, and I have to spray it with Bitter Yuck anyway.

Our neighbor down the street has put lights up on the front of his house, and they are quite lovely. He keeps them on all night.

It seems quite a few people have waited this year to decorate outdoors. There’s a lot of talk about more indoor decorations, since more people who have the option to stay home as much as possible during the holiday season are doing that.

We have the large, artificial tree up – we had to rearrange the furniture in the living room, since the large cat condo lives where the tree usually did. I bought this tree at Pergament in Port Chester for $49.99 in the early 90s. It’s been a lovely workhorse.

We have several artificial trees throughout the house – or rather, we will, when we finish decorating, which will probably take a few more weeks.

We do, however, have a live wreath, pictured at the top of this post. I buy a plain wreath, and then we decorate it however we wish for that year.

We also use a lot of real pinecones in our decorating.

When I take it apart over the winter, I save a handful of the dried greens for the following Solstice – for instance, last year’s wreath will start this year’s Solstice fire on the 21st. The rest of the greens I also keep, and use as kindling throughout the winter for the fireplace.

That’s pretty much it, this week. If the weather lets up a bit, I can put up the outdoor decorations. At the very least, I have to start getting in the furniture and the last big pots in off the deck. It’s been mild, so I haven’t wanted to bring the overwintering plants in yet.

How’s your week in the garden?

Winter Solstice – New Beginnings

Winter Solstice 2010
December 21
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Snowy and cold
Full Moon
Lunar Eclipse

This year, it will be different.

How often have I said that? Every year since I can remember. For years, I’ve had the fantasy of a garden. I’ve grown whatever I could in various apartments, be it right off Times Square, or in a Westchester County apartment where scumbag landlords used toxins so severe plants and animals died.

But this year, it WILL be different, because I no longer live in an apartment. I no longer live in New York. I am living where I’ve wanted to live for many years, on Cape Cod. I have a yard that’s about three times bigger than I realized when I rented the place. I’ve learned how to rake and bag leaves, how to take them to the dump. I’ll have to buy a lawn mower, which, to me, is more intimidating than walking down 42nd St. at two a.m. I have a still room for my herbs, and I’ll be growing some my own herbs and vegetables.

I can’t wait.

I have a lot to learn — from Times Square to Cape Cod is quite the shift in scenery (and everything else).

I look forward to learning, trying, and even making the mistakes.

I sit here, inside, watching the lovely snow pound down, wondering when I should go out and start shovelling, but, mostly, enjoying the peace and the ability to genuinely experience the ebb and flow of the seasons.

I hope you’ll join me on the journey. Your comments are always appreciated. I plan to post once or twice a week, more often during the summer if it’s appropriate.

And why not start on the Winter Solstice in the middle of a lunar eclipse that hasn’t happened this way since 1638 or 58 or whatever it is?

Merry Solstice, may the light shine on your flower beds, and may there be GENTLE rains!

Devon