Monday, January 12, 2015

Winter Rituals {Oíche Shamhna 2014}

As with my posts for my 2014 observances for the Summer festivals, I have a series of belated posts for the Winter festivals that I will be sharing over the next little while. This one is for this past Samhain. 

Leading up to Oíche Shamhna/Samhain Eve, the house was cleaned top to bottom and the final harvests from the garden were brought in. I also had the time to do a little more decorating this time, include carving a gaggle of Jack-o'-Lanterns made out of turnips, squash and pumpkins.

Quite a bit of food prep and baking was done, and this year we ate and made offerings of baked squash, roasted carrots and parsnips, stuffing, barmbrack, nuts and apples, chocolate, blueberry mead and mulled cider.

A couple of days beforehand I put together a larger Ancestor shrine and one for An Cailleach, during which we got our first snowfall of the season, which continued right through Samhain Eve. 

After the time of the trick-or-treaters {which was a sad turn out again this year!} I kept vigil throughout the night, spending time doing divination and making various charms for necromancy and ancestors, a new parshall cross and protection charms to ward off the damage that can be caused by storms. 

 A few days into November I did a ritual to essentially to make peace with those who had passed on who I had damaged relationships with. This was profoundly healing for myself at least and I will talk more about this ritual and the topic in general in an upcoming post. 

More to come!



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