Friday, August 31, 2012

Once in a Celtic Hazel Blue Moon

The Celtic Hazel month falls between Aug 5-Sept.1 and tonight is the Celtic Hazel Full Moon.  The hazel tree is a tree that teaches us how to look at things from a different perspective. Hazel is a tree of wisdom and bringing inspiration from a higher source as the hazel feeds you with spiritual nourishment. Hazel energy can bring you to a creative high point. If you feel that you’ve had a creative block or your muse has abandoned you, the hazel month is the time to get those creative juices flowing and healing for our hearts.

As it happens this Celtic Hazel Full Moon also falls on a blue moon! That doesn't refer to the color of the moon, but in our modern 12 month calendar, a blue moon is when there is a second full moon in a month. We won't have another blue moon until 2015, they don't happen often, which is where the term "once in a blue moon" comes from.
Hazel magic includes:
wisdom, creativity, inspiration, poetry, prophesy, confidence and charisma, seeking and sharing knowledge, eloquence, healing, heart chakra, luck, divination, looking within, new perspective, fertility, protection, wishing, resolving conflict

Hazel Card Print from Voice of the Trees available in our official Voice of the Trees Etsy shop.

Good Luck Hazel Blue Moon Spell
Blue is one of the colors for hazel magic and can also represent the blue moon, so a blue candle is perfect for this spell.  You can carve the ogham symbol for hazel in the candle (lower right corner of the picture above) and anoint it with hazel oil if you have some.  (I found some at my local grocery spell by the cooking oil) Make a circle of 12 white tea light candles around the blue candle, all together that's 12 moons of the year plus the blue moon equals 13.  Place a lapis lazuli or amethyst tumbled stone or one set in a piece of jewelry next to the blue candle.

Cast your circle as you normally do, and light the candles clockwise while you count from one to thirteen, ending on the blue candle.  Pick up the stone or jewelry piece and hold it in your hands while you summon the energy of the Hazel Blue Moon with this charm:

"On this hazel blue moon, my luck I renew,
The hazel sends blessings to all that I do
I make my own luck with confidence and wisdom
I now turn the tides to improve my conditions
Once in a blue moon my own stars I design,
Good luck in all things, success shall I find!"

Now leave the stone or jewelry piece in the circle of white candles next to the blue candle and allow all of the candles to burn out.  You now have a powerful good luck charm blessed under the hazel blue moon!

    If you're interested in more Celtic tree magic, please check out my online Celtic Tree Calendar class, there are 13 classes a year and each one is full of great information on the Celtic trees, illustrations, four full color pages, spells,and a sheet with candle labels and extras! 

Bright Blue Moon Blessings!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Stuffed Zucchini, A Recipe Blast From The Past!

Stuffed Zucchini, a classic dish from my childhood!

Circa 1970's when I was a kid living in Albuquerque, we had a garden.  I mean a big garden, it took up more than half of our backyard, and my mom grew everything, the kids in the neigborhood called her Mother Nature!  One of the many favorite things we grew was the zucchini, I loved it so much that I grow it myself now.  One of the things that happens when you grow zucchini is that if you turn your back for one minute, a zucchini can go from being just a regular zucchini, to being a monster zucchini and if you're not careful, you can end up with lots of them!  When I was a kid, my mom came up with a solution to this problem, a street side zucchini stand!  Forget lemonade, we were selling vegies! We would set up a table right there on the corner and cover it with our giant zucchini harvest and my sister Robin and I would sell them to drivers by.  Free with every purchase of a giant zucchini was a   recipe card (this was before we all had printers) hand written by my mother for her wonderful stuffed zucchini.  We always sold out!  When they get that large, the seeds tend to get a bit tough, so hollowing them out and stuffing them is the way to go!  One Zucchini can feed an entire family. 

This year when the giant zucchini harvest started to come in, I contacted Mom for that old recipe.  She thinks she had first found the recipe in Woman's Day or Family Circle magazine (our version of the Internet back in the day) So she used that recipe as a base and tweaked it like all good cooks do.  It was one of our summertime favorites, I made it for my daughters when they were little and so I was really excited to revisit this favorite from my past.   My son Tristan and I took to the kitchen and come up with our version of moms classic stuffed zucchini recipe, we hope you love it!

Tristan helped me in the kitchen, you have to scoop out the insides of the zucchini.

I chopped up fresh herbs, my favorite way to cook.

Brown the hamburger, soon it will be mixed with all kinds of good things!.

Stuffed Zucchini all ready to go in the oven!

One giant zucchini, at least a 2 lb one, or substitute several small ones
1 lb ground beef
1/2 large onion diced
1 tbsp minced garlic
the pulp from the zucchini with seeds removed, chopped finely
1 cup bread crumbs
8 oz can tomato sauce
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 sprig of each chopped, fresh basil, rosemary, oregano
1/2 tsp cracked red pepper
1 tsp Cavendars Greek seasoning
1 egg

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Brown the ground beef in a skillet and drain off the fat, then move the beef to one side of the pan and saute the onions and garlic on the other side until the onions. Mix the meat in with onions and garlic remove the meat from heat and let it cool.
Cut the stem off of the zucchini and slice the zucchini lengthwise. With a spoon scoop out the seeds and pulp from both halves. Pick the seeds out of the pulp the best you can and chop the pulp finely.  Add it to a large bowl along with all the herbs and seasonings, bread crumbs, tomato sauce, egg, and 1 cup of the cheese and mix.  When the ground beef is cool enough that it won't cook the egg, add it to the rest of the ingredients and mix well.  Spoon the mixture into the zucchini halves, it's ok if it mounds on top.  Then top with the rest of the other half of the cheese.  Place in a  9x13 pan, sprayed with cooking spray and add about a 1/4" water in the bottom and bake at about 350º until the Zucchini is tender when pierced with a knife and the cheese is a little brown on top.

Serve this dish up with lots of love and some crusty hot bread and a summer salad.  Pasta salad is a nice side dish for this one too.   I have so many giant zucchini, I'm going to scoop out the centers of a couple and freeze them like that so we can have this dish later in the year.

Tasty Blessings,

Thursday, August 16, 2012

New Sacred Altar Votive Statues from Sacred Source

Well, I've been sitting on this cool project for awhile, and now it can finally be unveiled! Presenting the Sacred Altar Votive Collection, my brand new statuary from Sacred Source!

These pieces are available separately or as a set from

Last January I sent Sacred Source the fresh new designs for this altar set.  This is the altar set of my dreams, so I drew it up.  I love the idea of God and Goddess statues that double as candle holders.  I actually sculpted a very crude God and Goddess set with a candle holder ages ago when I was new to the Craft, and I always wanted to improve upon the idea.  This was a great opportunity to make that happen!  I also have been making unique quarter candle holders for my own use time and time again since I began studying magic.  I always wanted to have some quarter candles that were really unique and would be a natural representation of each element, again this was the perfect opportunity to let my imagination run wild.  The tree pentacle altar tile may look familiar, it's a design that really speaks to my heart incorporating the five pointed pentagram, each point representing the elements of air, fire, water and earth, with spirit on the top, and surrounded by the trunk branches and roots of a wise old tree.  I drew each design showing the front, back and sides of each one and sent it off to my friends at Sacred Source to work their magic!

Here's a closeup of the Horned God.  I love the sizes of the God and Goddess Statues, both are less than 8" tall so there will still be lots of room for all your other magical tools on your altar.   Your candles to honor the God and Goddess will illuminate the statues beautifully from the base. You can order them here
The artisans that create the statuary for Sacred Source went to work bringing each piece to life.  They are amazing sculptors and always do such a beautiful job bringing my drawings from two dimensional drawings into 3D.  I wanted this set to be something that you could actually own and use not just dream about having.  We decided to make this a set that would allow you to either collect the pieces one at a time building up your altar set piece by piece, choose only the pieces that you want, or as a big splurge you can get the entire set all together!  You'll feel the magic and love that went into each designs whether you use this set on your altar in a solitary ritual, family ritual, or wouldn't it be a great set for a coven to use at gatherings?!
Here is a close up of one of the elemental candles.  The elemental inspired design wraps all around the sides and the back of each candle, so they represent each element beautifully from any angle it's viewed.  If you think the fronts of these votive holders look cool, wait until you see the backs!  You can use candle colors the represent each element according to your tradition. You can order them here

The Tree Pentacle Altar Tile can be used flat on the altar or it can hang on the wall. You can order one here

Now you know where you've seen that design!  Yes, we also make a lovely mother of pearl amulet with the tree pentacle design right in our studio, the perfect way to complete this lovely altar set! More info here
One of the best things about the release of this brand new altar set is that the good people at Sacred Source are offering an introductory discount!  I hope you enjoy this set as much as I enjoyed creating the designs!

Bright Blessings!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Lammas/Lughnasadh Blessings of Abundance to You!

Bright Blessings of abundance to everyone on this lovely Lughnasadh morning! 

The weather has cooled down a bit, down to a breezy 90 degrees, a regular cold snap!  We even got a little rain fall here a couple of days ago so that was a real blessing.  Living in the suburbs of St. Louis, there is actually a little farmland nearby, when I'm running my errands I've watched fields of corn and wheat growing to maturity.  Unfortunately many farmers are suffering from the heat and drought we've been having here and many has lost their harvest.  We thought we were going to loose some of our vegetables from our little garden.  We had hardly any rain at all , we watered every day using a soaker. When everything started to suffer from the heat we mixed 1/3 cup Epsom salt with 2 liters of water an poured it right on the roots of each plant. We almost lost everything a couple of times from the heat alone, I think the magnesium in the Epsom salt saved it. Here's a link with more information about gardening with Epsom salt for anyone interested... Epsom Salt For Gardens
We've been harvesting vegies a little at a time but this was our biggest harvest to date a couple of days ago, much of it is already in the freezer, and some has been eaten....nom,nom...

 I wanted to share my Lammas/Lughnasadh Spell for the First Harvest published in the Llewellyn Spell-A-Day Almanac 2012, which is posted on their website this morning, I hope you enjoy it.

First Harvest

Spell Date: Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Color of the day: White

Incense of the day: Lilac

Today is Lammas/Lughnasadh (pronounced loo-na-sa), the first harvest and a day honoring Celtic Sun god Lugh. It's a time to be grateful for what you have and for your opportunities. In modern times, our harvests are often figurative rather than literal. (Click for Full Spell)
I'll be baking a lovely loaf of southern beer bread this evening and lighting a candle to honor Lugh the Celtic Sun God of many skills and bringer of the first harvest, how will you celebrate?
Lugh candle sconce made right in our studio, available in our Etsy shop
May your harvest be abundant and your table be blessed with love, health and happiness!
Bright Blessings!