Newsletter: Yule 2021
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Here we come a Wassailing
Lately, I have been really reconnecting with my love for music. I even challenged myself to write an original song for Yule to provide an additional “pagan appropriate” jam to the more generally available holiday catalog (which tends to be very Christmas centric). Writing that song really put me in the holiday spirit and got me thinking about traditions relating to music during the Yule season.
Last year, around Yule (before we started our newsletter), I wrote a blog post that made comparisons between common “Christmas” traditions which many practice today and their relation to pagan origins. In this post I spent just a bit of time talking about the old practice of wassailing, which came in two distinct forms. I’ll allow you to read that on your own, but the reason I bring it up is that one of these forms relates to the modern practice of “caroling.”
Once upon a time, I used to go out carolling (or wassailing, if you will) with friends and would also enjoy it when carollers happened across my own door. During these pandemic days, however, it is not really wise to gather in large groups to sing and probably less advised to show up at people’s doors to do so. That being said, I would love for us to find a way to find a digital equivalent (or reasonable facsimile) for this tradition. For those who are able, I would like to encourage you to find some of your favorite Yuletide carols across social media (YouTube, TikTok, etc.) and either tag a loved one or send the video along to them to wish them a blessed Yule and/or a happy holiday season.
To get everyone started, here is a playlist of some of the coven’s favorite holiday jams:
Yuletide Bath Salts for a Bath Ritual
Bath rituals are still one of my favorite rituals, but as a mother it’s one that I don’t get to partake in as often as I used to. Something that has always made it so appealing to me is how accessible it can be to make a ritual bath using ingredients you have on hand. In our house, we always get a live tree and we keep it in our yard after the season is over. I use the needles sometimes in simmer pots and spell jars and thought it would be fun to use them in a bath ritual this year. I had a fun time making these salts and I hope you enjoy trying your own yule rituals. Happy holidays and happy solstice.
1 cup – Pink Himalayan Salt*
½ cup – Baking Soda
2 Tbsp. – Orange Rind
1 Tbsp. Cloves
1 large handful Pine Needles
10 Drops Clove Oil
20 Drops Sweet Orange Oil
3 Tbs. Coconut Oil
*Epsom salts, can be used with, or in place of pink salts
Step 1 - add salt and baking soda to food processor and blend, this step is optional, but I like to start with freshly ground salt
Step 2 - in a medium bowl, add all ingredients and stir to combine, this is a good step to add your intentions into the ritual
Step 3 - store in airtight containers until ready to use, or give as gifts
Step 4 - tie into tea bags or coffee filters and add to bath
Shadow Work Prompt: Joy
The holidays bring up so many great memories with the ones we love. Cooking family recipes, watching favorite holiday movies and upholding family traditions. What are some of your favorite holiday memories throughout the years?
Southern Hemisphere Shout Out
Blessed Litha to our friends in the Southern hemisphere. May your midsummer be fruitful and the light be cherished. Feel free to check out the Litha newsletter (composed for the northern hemisphere celebration) here for information, activities, and more!
December 21 Yule Begins
December 24 MCCP:WR S2E9
December 31 New Year’s Eve
January 1 Last day of Yule
New Year’s Day
January 2 New Moon (12:35pm)
January 7 MCCP:WR S2E10
January 14 MCCP:WR S2E11
January 17 Full Wolf Moon (5:51pm)
January 21 MCCP:WR S2E12
January 28 MCCP:WR S2E13
January 31 New Moon (11:49pm)
February 1 Imbolc