Tag Archives: Harvesting

Pine Harvesting

Most people have already discarded their Christmas tree, but I begged my parents not to burn theirs until I’ve been able to have some quality time with it and harvest what I could for the year.

In my ‘Tis the Season of Pine post I discussed the power of pine and its many magickal uses. But today as I sat outside in nature with the pine tree at my feet, I reflected on its spirit.

edited-pine-bowl-closeup

I honored the pine tree’s sacrifice and thanked him for giving my family such joy and happiness this past Christmas. I let him know his death will not be in vain and his spirit will be honored with every magickal working in which I use his needles and branches. I also ask that he bless my future workings with protection, prosperity, wisdom and purification.

Before harvesting from the tree, I sprinkled the rest of my Self Love Herbal Blend over it. I had created this herbal blend on Yule and kept the remainder as an offering on my altar.

As I sprinkled the mixture over his fluffy green body, a cool breeze blew by and the wind chimes hanging on the porch began singing a delicate song, ringing vibrations of blessings and offering their approval of our magickal bond.

Now the harvesting can begin.

pine-harvesting-open-jar

I began by snipping off a few good pieces of branches to make little pine wands. I use pine wands to disperse consecrated salt water around my circle or on items I’d like to consecrate.

After harvesting a bowl full of pine, I lit my white sage bundle and began smudging. I drew small pentacles of smoke, whispered blessings and set my intentions for the kind of magick I plan on performing.

I also smudged the glass jar I’ll be using for storage, filling it with the smoke before placing the harvested pine inside.

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Finally I smudged the piece of log I had removed from the bottom of the tree, which will be stored safely away and conserved for my 2017 Yule celebrations.

Every month or so, I like to redesign my altar. Today I removed my old Mercury Retrograde spell work and refilled my Offering Bowl with a few pine sprigs which had been dried in the Sun while solar-charging.

How do you like to harvest? Let me know!

Blessed Be!

xoxo

The Snow Orchid Witch

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12 Nights of Yule- December 28th

The year is coming very close to an end and on the ninth night of Yule, I continue to set my intentions for 2017 by looking ahead to September & Mabon.

Mabon is one of my favorite Sabbats because it celebrates one of my favorite seasons- autumn.

mabon-autumn-leaves-closeup

I live in south Texas, so summer lasts a bit longer than I’d like but that doesn’t stop me from decorating my home in beautiful fall colors, buying pumpkin-scented candles and drinking as much hot chocolate as I can stomach.

Mabon, the Autumn Equinox, is known as the Witches Thanksgiving. I plan on doing a lot of kitchen witchery with my Mabon recipes and am looking forward to making my very first pie!

It might turn out delicious. It might turn out tragic. Regardless, I’m excited.

Just like the traditional Thanksgiving, Mabon is about being grateful and taking time to cherish what the Universe has blessed us with. The second harvest reminds us of a time when the survival of the community throughout the winter depended on the success of the crops.

mabon-pentagram

There was a time in my life when money for food was scarce and I had to learn how to stretch my dollar to survive till the next paycheck. It’s times like those when I think of my Mexican-American ancestors; farmers and vaqueros who were paid very little and found a way to stretch their food to ensure their families were fed.

In Mexican cuisine, the whole animal is used from its cheeks and tongue to its intestines and stomach lining. Our dishes are commonly served with rice and beans because they’re cheap and feeds a lot of people at once.

But I can’t think of a better way to eat big on a tiny budget, than homemade tortillas- which has saved me from growing hungry too many times to count.

tortillas-2

Tortillas are great for fajita tacos, breakfast tacos, burritos and quesadillas. You can have them with a bowl of fideo, menudo, caldo- you name it.

I mean, ask a Mexican about tortillas with butter and you’ll get the same response- “Mmmm”.

The point of this tortilla rant is gratitude.

If my culture has taught me anything, it’s the importance of perseverance and family. Hard times are sometimes unavoidable but Mabon teaches us to harvest what we have- no matter how little, turn it into something delicious and share it with the ones we love.

Blessed Be!

xoxo

The Snow Orchid Witch

12 Nights of Yule- December 27th

On the eighth night of Yule, I look ahead to the eighth month of the year.

In August we celebrate Lughnasadh, also known as Lammas, which marks the beginning of autumn and the first harvest of the season. It’s customary to celebrate with grain & gratitude by baking Lammas bread and sharing it with the ones you love.

On this quiet day, I sit outside amongst the buzzing bees and chirping birds, enjoying my own version of cakes & ale with nature. My cakes are these cute little whole grain cookies from Dick & Jane Baking Co. They have pictures imprinted on them with both their English and Spanish translations.

cookies

I chose three cookies- snow to signify myself, corn to symbolize Lammas and money to represent what I’d like to harvest this year. My ale was a warm chai tea latte fragrant with cinnamon, ginger and clove- all wonderful prosperity spices.

Lammas is the time to consider what else I’d like to harvest in my life. After all, to harvest is to reap the benefits of the work we’ve done during the spring and summer, not just physically but mentally, emotionally and spiritually as well.

What knowledge can I harvest?

What new things have I learned this year and how can I start utilizing it?

What skill of mine still needs ripening?

What emotional growth can I celebrate?

What spiritual and magickal workings have culminated into fruition?

In what ways can I share my abundance?

 The wheel of the year is already turning forward towards spring and the opportunity for all kinds of growth is abundant. Eight months from now when it’s time for your spiritual reaping, what would you like to see yourself harvesting?

xoxo

The Snow Orchid Witch