Tuesday, December 10, 2013

The Yule Log

The Yule Log is a traditional part of the celebration of Yule or the Winter Solstice. It is a log typically made of Oak, Aspen, Pine, or Birch but can be made from any wood type as they all possess magical properties that the family or individuals may wish to enhance or possess.

It is said that the Yule Log holds its origins in Germanic Paganism. However, it may be traced back to the 6th and/or 7th century Anglo-Saxon Paganism. The Yule Log may be decorated and used as a festive ornament or centerpiece. It may also be burned in the hearth of the home for protection and bringing in bright blessings. Or it can be used as both!

The Yule Log represents the return of the Sun to the Earth. It represents the heart of the home and the presence of the Sun God which will return in the next half of the year with Spring and Summer. Ashes and some of the wood from the Yule Log are saved for the next Yule. This will be used in the ceremonial lighting of  next year's Yule Log.

How to Make Your Yule Log:


  • Log (any wood, 14-18" long)
  • Pine Cones, Ivy, Holly, Mistletoe or Berries
  • Feathers and/or Cinnamon Sticks
  • Ribbon or other festive decorations
  • Hot Glue (if you are attaching anything)
You may choose to place these items around the Yule Log or attach them in a festive manner. You may also drill holes into the top of the log to place candles if you desire. The ribbon may be used for attaching feathers and other miscellaneous items if you prefer to use a more natural method other than hot glue.

As always, cleanse and consecrate the items.

For a Chocolate Yule Log Recipe click here.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Yule Wassail Recipe

Wassail is a traditional yuletide drink. In olden times it was drunk during wassailing, an ancient drinking ritual, to ensure a bountiful apple harvest for the next year. Wassail in Old English literally means "be you healthy" and through wassailing promotes the health of the trees. It's main purpose was to scare away evil spirits from the cider apple trees so that they may grow and thrive.

Traditionally, the drink was made with a base of cider and topped with pieces of toast. However, modernized wassail drink recipes now have a base of ale, fruit juice, or wine and include apple and/or orange slices.

Here's a traditional carol about wassailing:

Gloucestershire Wassail

    Wassail, wassail all over the town
    Our toast it is white and our ale it is brown
    Our bowl it is made of the white maple tree
    With the wassailing bowl, we'll drink to thee

So here is to Cherry and to his right cheek
Pray God send our master a good piece of beef
And a good piece of beef that may we all see
With the wassailing bowl, we'll drink to thee

And here is to Dobbin and to his right eye
Pray God send our master a good Christmas pie
A good Christmas pie that may we all see
With the wassailing bowl, we'll drink to thee

So here is to Broad Mary and to her broad horn
May God send our master a good crop of corn
And a good crop of corn that may we all see
With the wassailing bowl, we'll drink to thee

And here is to Fillpail and to her left ear
Pray God send our master a happy New Year
And a happy New Year as e'er he did see
With the wassailing bowl, we'll drink to thee

And here is to Colly and to her long tail
Pray God send our master he never may fail
A bowl of strong beer! I pray you draw near
And our jolly wassail it's then you shall hear

Come butler, come fill us a bowl of the best
Then we hope that your soul in heaven may rest
But if you do draw us a bowl of the small
Then down shall go butler, bowl and all

Then here's to the maid in the lily white smock
Who tripped to the door and slipped back the lock
Who tripped to the door and pulled back the pin
For to let these jolly wassailers in.

Reference:Gloucestershire Wassail

Yule Wassail Recipe
From: http://paganwiccan.about.com/od/yulecooking/r/Wassail.htm
By: Patti Wigington

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

Total Time: 3 hours, 15 minutes


  • 1 Gallon apple cider
  • 2 C. cranberry juice
  • 1/2 C honey
  • 1/2 C sugar
  • 2 oranges
  • Whole cloves
  • 1 apple, peeled and diced
  • Allspice
  • Ginger
  • Nutmeg
  • 3 cinnamon sticks (or 3 Tbs. ground cinnamon)
  • 1/2 C - 1 C brandy (optional)


Set your crockpot to its lower setting, and pour apple cider, cranberry juice, honey and sugar in, mixing carefully. As it heats up, stir so that the honey and sugar dissolve. Stud the oranges with the cloves, and place in the pot (they'll float). Add the diced apple. Add allspice, ginger and nutmeg to taste -- usually a couple of tablespoons of each is plenty. Finally, snap the cinnamon sticks in half and add those as well.
Cover your pot and allow to simmer 2 - 4 hours on low heat. About half an hour prior to serving, add the brandy if you choose to use it.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Celtic Music

© All music composed by Adrian von Ziegler.

The video artwork was made by Carina aka Aelathen:

I love soothing Celtic music. It's quite beautiful and this piece is magnificent! Try using soothing tones such as this during meditation practices to help enhance your experience.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Spell for Motivation

The New Moon is approaching and I'm feeling like I need a little motivation to get through this month of December! Whatever you're trying to accomplish it's best to have motivation to help push you forward with your goals. I hate feeling stagnant and a little motivation can take you a long way. Here's something you can do to help you get back some of that motivation.

This spell involves simple candle magic and meditation. You may want to start this spell with a sacred Circle or a simple Salt Circle depending on your preference. Here's what you'll need:


  • 3 Candle Holders
  • 3 Taper Candles (1 green, 1 red, 1 blue)
  • Bowl of Salt
  • Bowl of Water
  • Sage 
  • Incense (bergamot and cardamom are good for motivation!)
  • Anointing oil (cedarwood, rosemary, or any of your choice!)
You may want to begin by relaxing with a nice bath and cleansing yourself before starting the spell. It will help clear your mind. If you choose to do this, use bath salts with the properties you are trying to seek, in this case motivational, uplifting properties.

Begin by preparing a nice relaxing space and altar for yourself and your tools. Make sure this space is relaxing and without distractions so that you may focus on your intentions. Each color corresponds with what you are trying to achieve. Green symbolizes grounding energy and strength for your motivation. It is the base upon which your motivation stems from. This candle will be placed in front center of yourself.

The color red symbolizes the power you wish to possess and achieve with your goal. It is your inspiration and your desire to change, grow, and flourish. It is as vibrant and intense as your will and it burns within you as you travel the path to what you seek. This will be placed to the back left of the green candle.

The color blue symbolizes aspiration. Your hope will prevail and motivate you to achieve your goals. It reminds you of what will be gained and what you must shed in order to reach your goal. Blue brings about change for the better. It will be set to the back right of the green candle.

Cleanse and consecrate all items. Be sure to cleanse the water as well. Let the incense burn as you anoint the candles with oil. Let your thoughts rise into the air with the smoke from the incense. Light the candles starting with green, then red, then blue, focusing on each one's meaning. Meditate on the goals you wish to achieve. Plan how you are going to achieve them. You may want to whisper what you desire from each candle. These words will rise into the air as the candles burn. You may want to say prayers to the God and Goddess as well.

Let the candles burn out completely. Close the Circle and give thanks to the God and Goddess.

For more on candle magic, click here.