May Handcrafted Faves

Peony Frills by Fizz Studio
Rose City Handmade Soap by Haus of Gloi
Green Plant Print Set by Instant Graphics
Calendula Flower Tea Bath by Era Dans L’Herbe
Red Fox Necklace by Hand Painted Jewelry Co
Bee Spirit Pagan Prayer Beads by The Wytch of the North
Refillable Hand Tooled Leather Journal by Amanita Grove

PBP – Heather

 

Image from grow.ars-informatica.ca

Image from grow.ars-informatica.ca

 

Latin Name:
Calluna Vulgaris

Common Names:
Heather, Heath, Scot’s Heather, Scotch Heather, Froach, Ling

Parts Used:
Flowering shoots

Image from Wikimedia

Image from Wikimedia

Medicinal Properties:
Heather has been used for insomnia, migraines, stomach pain, skin problems, and coughs, and problems that are connected to menstruation. It is considered a mild diuretic, and has antiseptic qualities.
Its use strengthens the heart and raises blood pressure slightly, and has been used to treat heart palpitations.
Used fresh or dry, you can make a heather tea to access its benefits by simmering 4 teaspoons to a cup of water. The dose is a half of a cup per day if drunk.
The flowering shoots can also be added to a bath to tone muscles and sooth rheumatic issues.

Magickal Associations:
The planet Venus, Water, garnet, red, white, Red Grouse, Uroica, Venus, Aphrodite, Erycina, Cybele, Isis, wild passions and their consequences

Magickal Properties:
An flower of the Goddess, it is sacred to Isis. Heather is carried for protection against violent crimes, especially of rape (white heather provides the strongest protection), and for general good luck.

White heather is often used in cases where one is presented with overly passionate, and ultimately unwanted suitors.
Red heather, in turn, aids to stir up the passions, or to begin or end an affair.
Purple is often used for spiritual development.

Sleeping on a pillow stuffed with heather can bring about foretelling dreams of good fortune.

Burning heather and fern together outdoors brings rain.

It is a flower that can open portals between this and the world of the Fae. The Fae of this flower are also especially attracted to people who are shy. It can also be used to conjure the spirits of the dead.

Lastly, it is helpful for those who shape shift, as well as protects against shifters who would cause you harm.

Image from guim.co.uk

Image from guim.co.uk

Dandelion Wine

When I went out with my doggy this morning, with the intentions of playing with her for a while, and hopefully her potty break, I realized how much yellow I saw in the hedgerows around my house. Then it came to me, I must make some dandelion wine! Here are pictures of the process:

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Fresh picked flowers, stems still need to be removed, and a good rinse.

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Steeping in boiled water.

DSC00760 500

Sugary dandelion flower tea.

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All the ingredients in the carboy. It’s now happily fizzing away 🙂

If you’re looking to make your own dandelion wine, here’s the recipe I used for one gallon:

5 cups of dandelion flowers
8 cups sugar
2 litres boiling water
1 sliced orange
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 1/4 tsp yeast (or one wine yeast packet)

Collect the dandelion flowers, rinse them well and make sure all the stems are removed.

Boil your water, pour into a big bowl (I used an ice cream bucket). Place flowers in the water, stir well so that all the flowers are as submerged as possible. Steep for four minutes.

Take out the flowers, and add the sugar to the water. You can adjust the amount of sugar to suite your tastes, but I wouldn’t suggest going lower than 6 cups. Make sure the sugar is completely dissolved.

Slice your orange and place in the carboy (or whatever you’re using to ferment it), add lemon juice and yeast.

DO NOT ADD WATER UNTIL IT HAS COOLED! Otherwise, you’ll kill the yeast when you add the water to the carboy.

Add the water to the carboy when slightly warmer than room tempurature, and stir or shake so that it is well incorporated.

Place an air lock on top. You don’t want it to be very full because in a short while, your wine should be fizzing and foaming, which will push the oranges up to the top, making it hard (especially in a carboy) for the gases to escape.

In about two weeks, give or take depending on how warm the wine is, the bubbling will stop. Siphon out the liquid, leaving the lees on the bottom of the carboy (the icky left overs from the yeast and oranges). Strain through some cheesecloth if you want to make sure there are no particulates floating around (I don’t care so much, lol), and store in airtight containers (mason jars, flip-top bottles, etc).

Voila! It’s recommended that you wait at least a week before drinking it.

Happy home brewing!

Happy Ostara!

I’m wishing all of you wonderful readers a very blessed Ostara/Equinox! 🙂

Clytie – The Heliotrope

 

by Ovid (adapted)

There was once a Nymph named Clytie, who gazed ever at Apollo as he drove his sun-chariot through the heavens. She watched him as he rose in the east attended by the rosy-fingered Dawn and the dancing Hours. She gazed as he ascended the heavens, urging his steeds still higher in the fierce heat of the noonday. She looked with wonder as at evening he guided his steeds downward to their many-colored pastures under the western sky, where they fed all night on ambrosia.

Apollo saw not Clytie. He had no thought for her, but he shed his brightest beams upon her sister the white Nymph Leucothoe. And when Clytie perceived this she was filled with envy and grief.

Night and day she sat on the bare ground weeping. For nine days and nine nights she never raised herself from the earth, nor did she take food or drink – but ever she turned her weeping eyes toward the sun-god as he moved through the sky.

And her limbs became rooted to the ground. Green leaves enfolded her body. Her beautiful face was concealed by tiny flowers, violet-colored and sweet with perfume. Thus was she changed into a flower and her roots held her fast to the ground – but ever she turned her blossom-covered face toward the sun, following with eager gaze his daily flight. In vain were her sorrow and tears, for Apollo regarded her not.

And so through the ages has the Nymph turned her dew-washed face toward the heavens, and men no longer call her Clytie, but the sun-flower, heliotrope.

 

Offerings

After having done some magic(k)al work on Beltaine, I needed to make an offering to the gods. I had to wait until we got groceries to be able to do it, but I got the ingredients to make salt dough so that I could sculpt some things to offer. While working on these items, I took the time to be mindful of what they were thanks for, and to put my intent of love and gratefulness into the pieces for the gods.

I did a flower for the goddess, and an oak leaf for the god. Now, I wasn’t really using specific gods for my little ritual, just the energies that make the world go round, masculine/feminine, sun god/lunar goddess.


While salt dough is pretty easy to make (recipe will follow), it’s definitely not something you can make really elaborate images out of. It’s kind of got the consistency of play-dough, though slightly different.

Recipe
3/4 cup water
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 1/4 cups plain flour
1 1/4 cup salt
paint & varnish

Watercolour or gouache needs to be varnished (a pva glue will do). Acrylic paint doesn’t need varnished but can be for extra durability.

-preheat oven to 180c/350f
-mix all ingredients to form a soft dough, it should feel velvety and pliable
-knead the dough thoroughly on a floured surface until it is soft and stretchy

** make sure the dough is kneaded thoroughly or it will bubble and distort you chosen form when it’s baking

-model the dough – use hands and any kitchen implements you want to make patterns and forms
-bake on a sheet pan for 20 minutes or until the dough is hard
-paint when completely cool

** If the dough is not completely hard when it has cooled (check the underside) then pop it back in the oven for a further 10 minutes. Allow to cool again before painting.

I got it from the #mce_temp_url#, which is, by the way, a fabulous pagan forum.

Anywho, I will be placing these little creations out in a huge weeping willow tree near my house, and saying a few quiet words of thanks. 🙂