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CrowonBranch2

I am taking down the Halloween/Samhain decorations, enjoying being outside.  The night before, the weather was beautiful for lighting a candle, some incense, listening to the wind whisper through the trees while pulling faery/fairy cards for the coming year. I asked out loud, which cards should I use and I heard, “Faery.” When I do readings, I have options of faery, angels, Celtic tree cards or a few others I like and have used for a long time.

Sitting out on our new porch drinking coffee, a large crow decided to sit on a branch close by and go on and on about something. I asked him if he had something to say to me or a message. I decided to look up his medicine lore and even while sitting here doing that, he came back several times and seemed to be screaming at me to listen to him! I tried to get a picture of him, but each time he would fly away. Hmmm. I am now very curious of his message. I have heard that many believe Crow is an omen of death or ill health. I tend to believe that old folklore seemed to always think black animals were bad, negative or signified death or illness. For me, I do not believe that “black” means that at all, no more than white or any other color. I do think black depicts darkness which stirs mystery, the unknown, things not seen and so on, so perhaps that’s why people generalize black animals, clothing, etc as “of the darkness” and not good or evil.

I believe Crow is the bringer of magic and curiosity, since they themselves are very curious. They steal items they like and build a home with them or stash them where they go often. For Crow to show up for me today makes sense, because I am working to reinvent myself a bit and do more magical things in my life. My body; my health, has kept me from too many things I love to do. I did not even come outside last year into nature, under the trees and do my Celtic New Year ending intentions; burning my list and asking for guidance. This is something I have done for a long time and to feel physically too ill to do it, made me sad. Perhaps Crow is telling me it is time. Time to get back to the old ways I love so much and practice them more in my daily life. I have felt the lack of balance in my life for some time and I have let it bother me too much. I am the only one that can make the decision to change my life and not allow what has been getting in my way, causing me to not live the life I want and need. For me, last night and today are very important, marking a new beginning, one I desire greatly. Just now, as I write this, a big wind came and it’s blowing leaves everywhere! That’s a great sign for me to listen and follow the winds of change! I have even been emotional lately, when I think of the seasons of our lives and when I look out at the lovely trees all around where I live. I thrive on nature and wildlife. I can feel the changes occurring in me, all stirred up and wanting to come busting out. I will not tell you all the things happening in my life now or recently that keep me from doing what I want to do, but as I tell others, they are not excuses they just are the way it is for now, and life is something we work through, not around. We must have patience with ourselves, loving ourselves when we need love, especially when we feel others do not understand or when everyone is working on themselves and their own path, we just have to do the best we can and keep moving forward.

For me, I am committing to doing more of what I love and enjoy. Doing what helps me heal and makes me feel good. I am making more jewelry for my online stores, writing more, spending more time at home and I note that our home is being remodeled so that is something that makes me happier. I do not hold in my feelings, at my age, but I do my best to be kind and loving. I try not to use the excuse of physical pain and I pray and ask for guidance on what to do next to help my healing come sooner than later, due to a huge amount of pain. I have not yet met or found the doctors or the treatment that is right for me, so I am looking forward to this all happening, soon. Crow just might be telling me to hang in there, keep faith and keep believing, it is all being worked on, even when I cannot always see it and when I have days when I just want to stay in bed; I have things to do!

Here is the part of Crow’s Medicine I found to resonate most with me:

(You can read more at the link I shared at the bottom of the page.)

Crow is also the guardian of ceremonial magic and healing. In any healing circle, Crow is present. Crow guides the magic of healing and the change in consciousness that will bring about a new reality and dispel “dis-ease” or illness. You can rest assure when ever crows are around, magic is near by and you are about to experience a change in consciousness. Crow can give you the courage to enter the darkness of the void, which is the home of all that is not yet in form.
If you have a crow as a totem, you need to be willing to walk your talk and speak your truth. You must put aside your fear of being a voice in the wilderness and “caw” the shots as you see them. Crow is an omen of change. If he keeps appearing to you he may be telling you that you have a powerful voice when addressing issues that you do not quite understand or feel that they are out of balance.
Crows are the bringer of messages from the spirit world, and is thought to dwell beyond the realm of time and space.
When you meet crow, he could be telling you that there will be changes in your life and that possibly you should step by the usual way you view reality and look into the inner realms …walk your talk… be prepared to let go of your old thinking and embrace a new way of viewing yourself and the world.

 

crow-on-branch-hi

 

This is a nice page; read more about, Crow’s Medicine and Lore.

 

Sending and wishing you many blessings, love, joy and light!

 

Written and shared with love, Fran Mystiblu Hafey~

 

Blog & Writings Copyright©A Moment with Mysti~Mystickblue~Fran Mystiblu Hafey~2000-2015~All Rights Reserved. Beliefs and thoughts of the Author are my own and may not be the same as yours. To each his own, harm none and Namaste~ 🙂 If you share this post/writing, please include all names, titles and copyright. Thank you.

 

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Autumn02

Autumn is very magical to me. I love the frosty mornings and the mystical nights. I love all the seasons, but Autumn is my favorite. The trees turn beautiful colors and their leaves fall gently to the ground making a crunchy carpet. Everywhere I look I see changes. The air is cooler and similar to every autumn I have experienced. The wind and rain come, causing the leaves to fall faster and do all sorts of dances and magical swirls. I love how the wind makes the tops of the trees sway back and forth, like a dance, lulling them to sleep. I sweep and rake leaves from the porch, cut back the roses, collect seeds and bring plants in that spend all summer out in the warmth and come in to keep from freezing in the winter. I watch for signs and pay attention to the forecasts for frost and low temperatures. I find myself rummaging for warmer clothes and boots instead of sandals. My gardens are finished producing and I feel so blessed for all they gave for us to eat and enjoy. I seek ways to keep the dogs out of them so the soil can rest all winter long; composting for the next growing season. I dry some of the herbs and others will continue to grow indoors for me and my family to enjoy. I decorate the front porch with some of my favorites; a scarecrow, jack-o-lanterns and brooms, welcoming guest for the harvest. There are few things I enjoy more than sitting out on the front porch swing, listening to the birds, the wind and feeling the wonderful energy of autumn.

Tonight is Halloween night, or Samhain, as some call it. Samhain is a Gaelic or Celtic festival marking the end of the harvest season and the beginning of winter or the “darker half” of the year; the time when Mother Earth sleeps and rests. The days are shorter and darker, ending the growing season, bringing in the time of harvest and then winter. November first is the Western Christian holiday of All Saint’s Day, also called All Hallows or Hallowmas, followed by All Souls’ Day on November second. Both days are considered Holy and are observed all over the world in different ways. Within the days of Halloween and All Soul’s day, I will sit outside, light a candle and burn my yearly “negatives” list. It’s a list of things I am letting go of and changing in positive ways. When I burn the list, I ask the wind to carry the ashes and energy up and out to the Universe. I believe and affirm in new beginnings and let go of what I don’t want and don’t need in my life. I know the veil is thin at this time and it is a good time to speak to those who have passed on to the other side and feel peace. Often, this is a time I will receive messages and “glimpses” of things to come, ideas, inspiration and perhaps even a message from an old soul connection, the angels or spirit. I am open to messages and dreams at this time even more than usual because the energy is so wonderful!

I hope you’re enjoying the season of Autumn and are spending time outside with nature. I’m sending good wishes for a wonderful Halloween, Samhain and All Saints day! Remember to take some time to set a place at the table or light a candle in honor of loved ones passed and wish them well.

Blessings and light,

Mystiblu~Fran

Read the links below for more information: 

One of my own writings/page… https://mystiblu.wordpress.com/tag/october/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samhain

http://www.thewhitegoddess.co.uk/the_wheel_of_the_year/samhain.asp

http://www.catholic.org/saints/allsaints/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/All_Saints’_Day

*Opinions and thoughts of the Author are not necessarily the opinion and thoughts of the reader. Please read with an open mind.*

If my messages are helpful or reach out to you, please feel free to reach out to me too at “A Moment with Mysti” at https://mystiblu.wordpress.com/ If you share this message, please keep my copyright with it or share it exactly how you see it. Thank you.

Copyright©Mystickblue~A Moment with Mysti~Fran Hafey~Mystiblu~2014-All Rights Reserved.

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HalloweenHauntedNice

 

I grew up in the country near a small town where we went to church, did our grocery shopping and every year we went Trick or Treating. We never bought our costumes; we merely went up to the attic and went through clothes my Mother had saved for years and years, along with a few masks, wigs and makeup. We would put our costumes together with the help of Mom, who was also a wonderful seamstress. We would go to our church Halloween parties, where they had haunted houses, goodies to eat, a contest for different ages and the adults dressed up just to be mysterious and have fun! I had my picture in the local newspaper one year for winning with my witch outfit, which was all authentic except for the mask! For Trick or Treat, we’d go to sections of town where we knew folks and many times I would hear how cute and sweet we were and oh my, how much we’d grown since they saw us last. Most were church friends and Mom felt safer driving places she knew well.

I learned a lot about values and traditions from my Mom and the energy and creativity she put into helping us figure out our costumes and put them together. I appreciated that and kept the tradition when my children were old enough for Trick or Treats, never buying costumes but finding things around the house, maybe buying a prop or something extra we needed from time to time, but mostly everything was homemade. We had fun, no matter where we lived, but for many years we would go back to my old Trick or Treating stomping grounds in the little town I grew up in. I knew everyone in town practically in the areas I went myself as a child. We would go as a family and sometimes we, the adults, dressed up too. I always loved this time of year with the fun, the mystery, the changes of the season and how it led to even more holidays!

Autumn and Halloween have always felt very magical and mysterious to me, so it’s always been my favorite time of year, even before I learned more of its significance and importance to me.

Now, I hold many of my own traditions; decorating the front door and porch and inside the house too. I don’t have any little ones, but my grown children take their children Trick or Treating now, a few are already too old and have told me they miss the fun of going out on Halloween night, Trick or Treating. There is no age limit on dressing up and going out, having fun and giving the treats to the little ones. Halloween is a night to be a kid at heart! My beliefs are mixed, keeping some from the past and learning of those I love and believe in now too. I keep what feels good and right to me and let go of the rest.

Many go to parties, but we usually stay home. I love the Halloween shows on television, like The Great Pumpkin and Hocus Pocus, then I steal away to have some alone time. I like to sit outside and feel the wind and talk to the Ancient Elders, Mother Earth, the wind, the moon and listen and watch for those that have passed on into another realm that come to visit us on All Hallow’s Eve, Samhain, Halloween. This night is the best time to reach out and connect to loved ones that have passed on and feel peace. The veil is already thin, but on this night, it’s at its thinnest. I leave an empty place setting and harvest foods at the table as a gift for those who pass through my home and continue on their way.

Since becoming older, I’ve learned much more about this night. I believe this is the end of the old year for the Celts, the New Year,  the last harvest and the beginning of winter; a tradition I believe in. Now, the days become shorter and the nights longer; symbolizing a time of darkness and rest. This is the  time of harvest blessings and letting go of the things that are not prosperous in our lives or that which is not positive. I write out a list and sit outside, speaking to the wind, lighting candles and a fire in our outdoor fireplace. I always ask the wind to leave my candles be, not to blow them out and they never do. I also have a nice heavy cauldron I use to burn my list in at the stroke of midnight. I speak to those I love that are far away, my guides and all my helpers. I’ve done this for many years. I love how things feel the next morning on November first; All Saints Day or the Day of the Dead. The energy feels fresh and clean, and I always say a prayer for those that have passed and saying thank you for yet another good Halloween-Samhain and look forward to Yule and the New Year.

Wishing you a wonderful, fun, safe Halloween-Samhain, filled with magic, mystery and blessings!! Remember to keep the home and hearth fires burning!!

HowlOWeenWolves

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Visit me at http://Mystickblue.com

Buy my first book at http://Mystickblue.com/ASeasonofLove.html 

*Opinions and thoughts of this Author are not necessarily the opinion and thoughts of the reader. Please read with an open mind.*

If my messages are helpful or reach out to you, please feel free to reach out to me too at http://mystickblue.com/ If you share this message, please keep my copyright with it or share it exactly how you see it. Thank you.

Copyright © Mystickblue-Fran Hafey2013-All Rights Reserved.

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Snowy Jack-o-lanterns in Virginia!

A Season of Love Message~10-31-11

October 31, 2011

A Season of Love Message for Monday:  Today is a day I always let my inner child come out to play! It’s Halloween or Samhain, as some call it. It’s good to have fun, pretend, dress up and “trick or treat!” I like the quote by George Bernard Shaw, that says, “ We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing!  It’s so important for us to keep a spirit of playfulness in our hearts and have fun; it’s good for our soul! I like going out trick or treating with my Grandkids, just like I did my kids. I may move a little slower, but I still dress up and have a great time with all the ghouls , goblins, witches, mummies, princesses and heroes! I love seeing the adults getting in on the fun and just letting go!  So today, I can let go of the adult stuff and be a kid at heart! It’s a great feeling and one we should do often. Whatever you do tonight, have fun, be safe and laugh! 

This year I’m not going out door to door with any kids, because all my Grandkids are far away and have plans. I still know I am with them in spirit, in their hearts and I’ll be enjoying my quiet night tonight, about midnight, under the stars and moon, burning my sacred fire in my outdoor fireplace, talking to the trees, the wind, the spirits and my ancestors. I light my candle and stay outside for a while, opening my heart to whatever may come to me. I celebrate this time of year as Harvest, the Celtic New Year, Autumn and a time when the veils between energy is so thin, it’s really not even there. As the time rolls to November 1st from October 31st, the energy is incredible, allowing us to let go of the old and be grateful for all lessons and step into a new day. I love how fresh everything feels on “All Saints Day,” November 1st and how blessed I feel too.

I pray you feel the energy vibrations in all things this time of year and all throughout the year and the seasons. 

Blessings for the Celtic New Year! Happy Samhain, Halloween!

~Mysti-Fran

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Earth Magic and Druid Lore Part II~A Series for the Season~Hearth, Home and Samhain 

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 firemoon

Earth Magic and Druid Lore Part II~A Series for the Season~Hearth, Home and Samhain

 By Fran Hafey/Mystiblu at Mystickblue.com 

By the warmth of the hearth, we gather round, for inspiration and ceremony. It brings to us, a sense of spiritual kinship and values of home. Storyteller’s faces glow by the light of the fire blazing beneath the cauldron filled with spicy aromas. Music floats and soothes the soul and heals the heart. The turning of the wheel once again, reminds us of a New Year dawning. Our love and respect for the earth told in tales of the past and once again brought forth by Druids and kin alike. On Hallow’s eve, the jack-o-lanterns glow in the windows to ward off evil spirits. The moon shines brightly on those conversing with loved ones and our ancestors passed on. The veil is thin between worlds at this time, and sitting by the fire brings light to many things in our home and hearth.

October 31 is when many pagans, druids and most witches celebrate the greater Sabbat commonly called Halloween or Samhain, pronounced sowen or soween. Some other names for Samhain include Hallowe’en, Halloween, Hallowtide, Shadow Fest, Harvest Home, Day of the Dead, Feast of the Dead, Spirit Night, November Eve, Ancestor Night, Apple Fest, All Hallow’s Eve, Old Hallomas, Hallowmass, Martinmass, Shadowfest, and All Soul’s Day.

This was the time the Celtic people came to terms with death and pondered on their own destinies. This day is considered the highest holy days. Samhain (Summer’s End), is the most widely used Celtic name for this holiday. Rituals on this night include remembering and honoring our loved ones and our ancestors.

One tradition is called the “dumb supper.” This is a feast with all the wonderful foods from the last harvest. A place is set for our departed family members. You might set photos or other mementos upon the table and tell stories remembering times shared with those who have passed over.

During this time many will ask their ancestors’ spirits to assist in whichever form of divination they choose. Some common and oldest forms used are tarot, fire, the pendulum and mirror. You might also try a dark bowl or cauldron filled with liquid, crystals, runes, or reading tea leaves. Guided meditations or astral travel for the purpose of past life regression and/or for the purpose of knowing or learning something specific from one’s ancestors, are very successful on this night.

In many parts of England, it was believed that the ghosts of all persons who were destined to die in the coming year could be seen walking through the graveyards at midnight on Samhain. Many of the ghosts that people thought they saw were said to be evil. For protection, jack-o-lanterns with horrible candle-lit faces were carved out of pumpkins and carried as lanterns to scare away the evil spirits.

This is the time in the Celtic year the gods drew near to Earth. Many sacrifices and gifts were offered up in thanksgiving for the harvest. Personal prayers were lifted up and trinkets representing wishes and ills were thrown into the fires. At the end of the ceremonies, brands were lit from the great fire of Tara to re-kindle all the home fires of the tribe. As they received the flame that marked this time of beginnings, the people felt a sense of the kindling of new dreams, projects and hopes for the year to come.

After the bonfires had burned out the ashes were sprinkled over the fields to protect them during the winter months and this also made the soil rich for the next years harvest to grow.

It is said that lighting a new orange candle at midnight on Samhain and allowing it to burn until sunrise will bring one good luck.

The apple is the Celtic tree of regeneration and eternal life also representing the sun, the source of all life, love, healing and immortality. Apple orchards were especially protected as sacred ground and apples were offered to the dead and buried at Samhain as food for those waiting to be reborn. Burning apple blossoms can be used for incense pleasing the spirits.

Brighid or Bridget is the Patroness of the Hearth and Goddess of the household fire. In the evening the woman of the household would “smoor” or  stoke the fire to keep it going for the night, by adding wood and covering it low to keep it just smoldering until morning. The fires should be kept going and prayers lifted, asking for the protection of Brighid on all who reside there. She is perhaps the most well known of all the Celtic goddesses. Her following was so strong that the Catholic church exalted her as St. Brigit, the foster-mother of Christ, and kept her festival as the feast of St. Brigit. Bridget is sometimes seen as a triple goddess, the maiden, mother and crone that symbolize the cycle of life. She is the goddess of the hearth, fertility, healing, herbalism, the arts, midwifery, agriculture, inspiration, poetry, divination, prophecy, smith craft, animal husbandry, love, and protection. Correspondences for Bridget include the direction north, blackberries, fire, wells, milk, the waxing moon, lambs, and the heart. Other names for Bridget are, “Bright Arrow,” “Bright One,” “Powerful One,” and “High One.” Bridget was a Sun Goddess, and the legend of her birth is that she was born at sunrise, and a tower of bright flame burst from her forehead that reached from Earth to the Otherworld. Her fire is so bright that she survived mass spiritual transformation and lives on today watching over her children all over the world. Imbolc, a festival in her honor is celebrated February first or second, the turning of winter, heralding the coming of spring. Fires are lit at sundown and feasts are shared with her bright presence.

Late October was the nut harvest for the ancient Celts, and also the time for slaughtering animals that would supply meat for the long winter. Druids tallied their livestock and mated their ewes for the coming spring. Fruits, vegetables, and grains were also put away for winter storage.

The Celts put all their fires out on Samhain so that the tribes could relight them from the Druidic fires that were kept burning in the Middle of Ireland, at Usinach. In Ireland and Scotland, the custom of dousing the home fire and relighting it from the festival bonfire has been carried into modern times.

The Druids believed that the Lord of Death gathered all the spirits of the dead who had been made to enter the bodies of animals as punishment for their sins and redistributed them, on Hallowe ‘en, the last day of the Celtic year. It was also believed that the spirits of the dead came back to their old haunts at this time. Fires were lit to guide them home and to frighten away evil spirits. A farmer sometimes accompanied by his herds would circle the boundaries of each field to ensure prosperity for the New Year. This was a reversion to the calendar of the Druids who considered that Samhain was the first day of the New Year.

On Samhain, an old custom was to light a fire on the household hearth which would burn continuously until the first day of the following spring.

It is said that if you go to a crossroads at Halloween and listen to the wind, you will learn all the most important things that will befall you during the next year.

Cerridwen is often portrayed as a hag stirring a cauldron, the typical image of Halloween. Cerridwen is one of the goddesses most associated with shape shifting. She is often seen as a sow, for her attribute of fertility and as the Moon and grain goddess who possesses the great cauldron of knowledge. Cerridwen is the goddess of death, fertility, regeneration, inspiration, enchantment, divination, herbs, science, poetry, knowledge, and shapeshifting. Correspondences for Cerridwen include the direction west, pigs, hens, cauldrons, wolves, vervain, acorns, and the dark moon.

The cauldron holds the great brew of as yet to come wisdom, which is plainly available to anyone who thirsts after it. It also holds the nourishment of the soul and possesses the property of granting wisdom to any who drink from it. The cauldron remains important in all Celtic and Druidical workings.

The Hazel tree is the Bard or minstrel poets, tree of wisdom, promoting fertility, poetry, and knowledge. It’s a favorite wood of diviners and dowsers. Druid wands are made from hazel wood, planted in nines around sacred wells. The nuts honor all knowledge to whoever eats them and are eaten before using divination. Rain is invoked by beating the earth with hazel branches. The hazel is the most typical Celtic tree because of its legendary position at the heart of the Otherworld, which is where the nine magic hazelnut trees hang over the Well of Wisdom and drop their purple nuts into the water where the Salmon of Knowledge and Inspiration eats them. Irish tales say poets and seers “gain nuts of Wisdom,” a metaphor for a heightened state of consciousness, when they drink a brew made from the hazelnuts that have been said to cause hallucinations. There’s numerous reference in Irish literature to drinking “hazel mead.” Scottish Druids ate the nuts for prophetic power.

Legends say, the hazel, apple, and hawthorn trees are often found at the border of worlds where magic has been said to happen.

Young lovers roasted hazelnuts over the fire at Samhain, called “Nut Crack Night.” If the nut held together, their relationship would stay steady, but if it burst apart, then the love may not last or it could be a “heated” relationship. This connection between hazelnuts and love is very ancient. Country folklore has always linked hazelnuts with fertility. New brides were given the nuts much like the wives tale of rice being thrown after the wedding, to indicate fertility.

There are many tales and stories of old and wise, these are just a few. Remember to cherish your loved ones and those who have passed from this life into another. Reflect on the New Year and count your many blessings.

Copyright: © October, 2002 All rights reserved. Revised Oct.2009 and 2011.

About the Author

Fran Hafey is a Healer, Author, Writer, Spiritual Counselor, teacher, human, earth and animal activist. She provides guidance and inspiration via her Website, groups and blogs on the Internet. To read more of her articles visit the Author’s Website:  Mystickblue.com
She’s currently working on publishing even more books about love, inspiration, magic, twinflames, color healing and nature stories for Children of all ages. Find out more about her first book, “A Season of Love,” and find how you can get your copy or ebook!

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herbs

Earth Magic and Druid Lore~A Series for the Seasons~Herbs

By Fran Hafey/Mystiblu of Mystickblue.com

 

This time of year, my thoughts turn to the changing seasons and the magic in the air. Mother earth is evolving as the leaves fall and the earth once again begins to rest. I love the colors and the nip in the air as the wind blows the last stalks of corn to the ground as frost paints them crystal white.

Now is not too soon, to think of what magical herbs we will plant next year. We can even plant them indoors in late winter to give them a good head start. I’m learning about good things to put in a Druid Herb Garden.

Every culture has its magical lore and a garden can be our altar or sacred space outside amid Mother Nature herself. For my Druid Herb Garden, I will be planting Queen of the meadow (Spiraea ulmaria), Primrose (Primula vulgaris), Vervain (Verbena Officinalis) and Water mint, Mentha Aquatica. These special herbs are among the Druids most cherished plants.

Queen of the Meadow, or Meadsweet, Bridewort or Lady of the Meadow, has an oddity that the scent of the leaves is quite different from that of
the flowers. The leaves possess an almond like fragrance. It’s one of the fragrant herbs used to strew the floors of chambers. In the fourteenth century being called Medwort or Meadwort, i.e. the mead or honey-wine herb. The flowers were often put into wine and beer. It’s still used  in many herb beers.

Primrose is abundant in woods, hedgerows, pastures and is in full flower during April and May. In sheltered spots in mild winters it’s often found in blossom during the opening days of the year. In the early days of medicine, the Primrose was considered an important remedy in muscular rheumatism, paralysis and gout. The whole plant is sedative and in modern days a tincture of the fresh plant in bloom, strong strength and in alcohol, has been used with success in extreme sensitiveness, restlessness and insomnia. From the leaves of Primrose is made a fine salve to heal wounds. In ancient cookery the flowers were the chief ingredient in “Primrose Pottage.” Primrose pottage was made by boiling pounded flowers, honey, almond milk, saffron, rice flour and powdered ginger. It was served garnished with flowers. The Primrose leaves are edible, fresh or cooked, made into tea or wine.

Vervain is known as the Enchanter’s Herb, believed to be the plants most fond and protective of humans. Vervain loves to grow near people. There is a legend that this herb sprang from the tears of Isis. Vervain bears the gifts of romance and protection.

* The Greeks and Romans tied it into bundles and used it to sweep their holy altars and sacred spaces.
* Vervain is an aphrodisiac, used to entice a lover. It’s used in love spells all over the world.
* Bathing in Vervain-infused or even rubbing any part of the plant on your body, is said to grant prophetic power, cause your deepest wishes to be fulfilled, make your worst enemies become powerless,  help protect friends against disease and malicous enchantment.

It’s a perennial bearing many small, pale-lilac flowers. The plant has no perfume, and is slightly bitter and astringent in taste. The name Vervain is derived from the Celtic ferfaen, from fer (to drive away) and faen (a stone), as the plant was much used for afflictions of the bladder. Because of the aphrodisiac qualities attributed to it by the Ancients, Priests used it for sacrifices and hence the name Herba Sacra. The name Verbena was the classical Roman name for ‘altar-plants’ in general, and for this species in particular. The druids included it in their lustral water and magicians and sorcerers employed it largely as used in various rites and incantations and by ambassadors in making leagues or organizations. Bruised, it was worn round the neck as a charm against headaches and also against snake and other venomous bites as well as for general good luck. It was thought to be good for the sight. Its virtues in all these directions may be due to the legend of its discovery on the Mount of Calvary, where it grows loyaly for the wounds of the crucified Savior. Hence, it is crossed and blessed with a commemorative verse when it is gathered. It must be picked before flowering and dried promptly.

Water mint has a perfume like that of the bergamot orange. It loves boggy areas and thrives in wet climate or around a water pond. If you’re in a drier climate, you may want to plant one of the many other mints in its place. Pretty purple lilac flowers all summer. Leaves  are soft, slightly downy and mid-green in color. The scent can vary from mint to strong peppermint. It should be planted in water or very wet marshy soil. It can be found growing wild around ponds and streams. Both peppermint and orange mint are derived from this species.

This is just one of the many gardens I’ll plant to create and keep magic around me and my home. I will sit under the moon and feel the fae as they come to visit and play in my gardens.

Copyright: © October, 2002 All rights reserved. Revised Oct.2009.

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