Candle Magic or Message


How are you doing? Uncertain times we find ourselves eh?

There has been a lot going on in my life in the last year or so which is probably why I haven’t blogged in a while.

Anyway, I was curious on your opinions about candles. Do you use candle magic? Do you get a message from your candles if you do?

I have used candles before, candles with signs burnt into them for a variety of reasons, coloured candles for spiritual correspondence reasons, I have lit candles and asked Spirit for help when people have asked for healing etc.

However, I am after your opinion on something that happened on Monday just gone.

My husband was going into a specialist hospital for brain surgery. A completely routine operation for the Neurosurgeons but still a pretty big deal for him and for us.

I put a call out to friends and fellow pagans to do their thing, send healing, light a candle, whatever they wanted to do to support him through his surgery. He was scheduled for 1pm, so those that saw the request, did their thing.

I came home and lit the candle that was on my altar and asked the deities for help in keeping him safe for me.

The candle I lit was an 80hr candle that I had been using since Yule. At approximately 4.10pm, the candle started to crackle. It crackled away for a good few minutes, which it had not done in all the hours it had been burning since Yule. Because it was quite strange I noted the time, so I could come back to it and give it more thought.

It was quite a while until I got to speak to a nurse who told me his surgery had gone well and he was ok, then another couple of hours until I heard his voice, as under current Covid conditions, I wasnt allowed into the hospital to visit.

Anyway, on Tuesday, when I got him home, he told me that be didn’t go down to theatre until about 3.30pm, I asked him to repeat what he said so l knew the operation was to take approx 30 mins.

This would be about the time the candle started to crackle……was I being informed that his surgery was done and he was ok?

I am taking it as such, I have thanked all of the deities I asked for help.

Do you have an opinion/theory?



How are you all doing? Moving on with life as the wheel continues to turn?

I hope you had a wonderful Imbolc, however you marked it or even if you didn’t. I had the pleasure of being invited to the handfasting of two friends of mine, it was wonderful to watch and to take part in. I had made my triple armed Brigid’s cross and had laid my cloth-Brat Brigid on Imbolc eve to receive her blessing if she passed, as well as having candles lit inside the house.

Anyway, back to the reason for me blogging again…Ego!

There have been a number of incidents in the last few days, the latest being this morning that made me realise that I have allowed my ego to come to the fore……and I wasn’t very impressed when I realised this. In fact it made me quite uncomfortable.

Since when did I decide that I was judge and jury on other people’s actions or even reactions to what I had done.

I had become quite complacent in my abilities, in fact it felt like bordering on arrogance!

I had to go out this morning to buy something and felt the need to let another driver know that he was wrong by running his red light after our lights had changed to green. Of course he knew what he was doing, any driver would it I felt the need (through sign language!) to tell him off. Following this I upset another driver, there is a particular stretch of road where traffic comes together from different directions and merges, most people know and understand how to do this at normal driving speeds. I did merge without thinking that I could possibly scare or upset another driver….but apparently I did. I don’t know if it was fear or anger that made them respond the way they did but the vitriol that was then direction at me….she was almost foaming at the mouth!

It was at this point I realised that maybe I had become too complacent and casual (arrogant!) towards other drivers…..just because I knew what I was doing/about to do, doesn’t mean they knew.

After getting what I needed I came straight home, grabbed the dog and a small bottle of whisky and went to the park. I needed to ask for help in humility so I walked the labyrinth asking my deities for their assistance. When I reached the centre of the labyrinth I made an offering of transplanted snowdrops and a libation of whisky.

As usual, when walking back out of the labyrinth, I felt like some of my issues had been lifted from my shoulders and I feel lighter. Maybe the sheer fact of realising I had let ego take over means I will know be better able to keep it in check? Maybe I will get the assistance I have asked for….either way I will try my best to not let it happen again.

Have you ever let ego take over in an aspect of your life?

Yule and Winter Solstice blessings.

Yule tide greetings and blessing to you and yours.

We have had the longest night and today will be the shortest day but daylight will start to increase from here as the wheel continues to turn.

We are heading into a new year and a new decade (in a calendar sense), I wonder what changes will be brought in as the days gets brighter, the seeds of plans that have been made in the dark evenings maybe sown and we wait to see whether they germinate or not.

To welcome the sun back I decided to get up and go the park to walk the labyrinth before sunrise. Thankfully it had stopped raining when I left the house and there was just the barest sliver of the moon left…not that you can tell that from this stunning phone camera image!

This looks more like a quarter moon so you will just have to trust me on that!

I walked around the park, listening to the birds and their chorus – although they could easily have been shouting to each other about the bonkers human walking around in the dark!

Anyway I got the labyrinth and I wanted to light ny candle to welcome in the sun, but my lighter decided that it wasnt going to play ball (even after I had checked it at home). Walked the labyrinth without a lit candle to the center and tried to light it again, success this time!

I had a mini meditation at the center while watching the flame on my candle as I waited for sunrise, I knew what time sunrise was, so there I was, full of pagan-y excitiment and I watch the eastern sky for my first glimpse of the sun….

and as I wait, I get a lovely view of the clouds rolling back in. I waited, sunrise came and went, I could tell from the light levels but the clouds made sure I didnt see the sun…..oh well, the intention was there.

People think that holding a ritual of any kind is just how you see it in the movies and that its all as beautiful as you see from the staged images on Pinterest….but in reality your lighter doesnt work and the weather throws a spanner or a cloud in to feck up your aethestic, you gotta laugh and go with it! My intention was there, my thoughts and feelings were on the solstice/Yule so to me I had a successful personal ritual. Now I am back home with a coffee and my family!

I would like to wish you a blessed Yule and Winter Solstice and enjoy your plans, wbatever they may be.

Finally kept my promise to the Orphans


Last time I posted it was before Samhain when I wrote about those who never got to become ancestors (post can be found here)

Well today, I finally got to go back to the grave of the Orphans with the Spring bulbs and plants I had purchased to honour their grave site.

It was a beautifully crisp and cold morning as you can see…

Thankfully not too much grass had taken over where I had cleared last time, but today I was armed with a trowel! I dug out more clumps of grass, I then chucked the bulbs onto the surface – for that natural look when they grow (according to all the gardening programmes on TV!). The bulbs were planted where they fell, hopefully this selection will provide sone lovely Spring colour,

Then I planted the Cyclamen and the teeny violas, hopefully they will spread out a bit over the coming year or so as long as they survive. The bulbs were already sprouting (I know they were going in late, life caught up with me!)

Sorry for the blurred image, I tripped over my bag of rubbish as I took this!

The whole time I was there I was being watched by this sentinel!

I have kept my promise that I made before Samhain, to the Orphans who never got to be Ancestors and I intend to regularly visit to tidy up.

Ancestors and those that never got to be

Its that time of the year when the shops are filling their aisles with pumpkins and spooky halloween items and sweets galore, as well as sneaking in some Christmas items too (it really is far too early for Christmas stuff!) But anyway, its all about Halloween and buying in as many sweets as you can so that you can dole them out to those children that come knocking on your door armed with buckets so they can collect as many as possible.

I remember when I was a child, carving lanterns from turnips – kids these days have no idea how lucky they are to carve pumpkins, they are so much easier than turnips! Then there was the smell of the turnip as it warmed from the candle inside(!)…..then they days of eating carrot and turnip so all that was labourisly cut out out wasnt wasted – yum! I can remember all of the family, 13 of us. Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, Mum and Dad as well as cousins would all get together, I can remember party games of bobbing for apples and trying to eat apples that were suspended on strings, foods included pea n ham soup and spare ribs. Looking back it was a great family gathering with fun and games, we didnt go out trick or treating, it was all about the family! These are good memories.

This leads onto Samhain, Ancestors and honoring the dead, which for a lot of Pagans is what Samhain is about. It is the 3rd and final harvest of the year, all foods for the coming harsher Winter months are stored or preserved, it was time to see in the darker half of the year. The veil separating the two worlds, ours and the otherworld where spirits of those who have gone before us reside, is thinner at Samhain, making communication with ancestors easier and allowing those that wish to, to cross over. Traditionally, a candle would be left burning in a window to show the ancestors the way home, sometimes a place would be set at the table and food provided for them to take if they wished. There are numerous traditions and rituals for Samhain depending on your beliefs and practices, I usually include a plate of food for any ancestors that visit and have candles and photographs out of my ancestors.

Last year I wrote a post about how I went to a local cemetry and honoured a random ancestor by tidying up and cleaning their gravestone, this year however I am away from home for Samhain but I have preparations in mind for honouring the dead where I will be staying.

Today, it was a lovely Autumnal morning ( and dry for a change!) I decided to walk down to the local supermarket instead of driving as it meant I could walk through the local graveyard, as I felt a pull to go there. Upon entering the graveyard I turned left instead of right and took a different path, and that is when I found this gravestone..

I had never noticed this gravestone before and it stopped me in my tracks!

Looking at the inscriptions, not only orphans but lives cut short, these individuals never got a chance to be Ancestors. I just stood there for what seemed like an age.

So I decided to tidy up the grave as it looked like it hadnt been tended to for quite a while, someone obviously had done at some point as there were a lot of fake flowers there. But it had been a while as the grass had taken over and fabric and plastic flowers were dirty, tired and half buried in the soil. I pulled them all out along with as much grass as I could. As I was going shopping I could buy some proper flowers to decorate it for now but I felt the need to do more. I will go back in the next week or so armed with rubbish bags and gardening tools, I will buy some plants that are available now for Autumn and Winter colour and I will sort the plot out properly. I will sow some yellow rattle seeds, a wild flower that inhibits the growth of grass so the grass doesnt strangle out the flowering plants, I may throw in some spring bulbs and then in Spring sow some wild flower seeds for summer colour. That way, hopefully there will be something cheery there for nearly a whole year.

Here is the same plot after my sudden and rushed tidy-up with some simple roses for now…

This will be a work in progress, to honor those that never got a chance to be an ancestor.

Have a wonderful Samhain/Halloween however you celebrate it, x

Beltane Eve

I would like to wish you a blessed Beltane eve and a wonderful Beltane for tomorrow.

I know that by the calendar Beltane is celebrated (in the Northern Hemisphere on 1st of May) but the Hawthorn is in flower here to so by a natural clock it is also Beltane.

No matter what path you follow it really is a wonderful time of the year, the weather is getting warmer, the Earth’s fecundity is everywhere from plants and flowers to the blossom on the trees being fertilised by winged creatures that never seem to stop working. My apple blossom (thankfully visited before the storm over the weekend removed all blossom petals), is already showing signs of plumpness indicating the possibility of apples!

My plans for a small fire and a chilled relaxing evening went by the wayside after locking myself out of the house when I finished work and my husband was in bed recovering from a disability assessment he had today. I had to ring my daughter who was out with my parents to come home and let me in!

She told me over the phone that her first period had turned up and she wanted her mum (as all previous conversations about what to do bad gone out of her head!)

Bless her, she was very clingy we she got home, our little (eldest) girl had crossed into womanhood. I must admit I felt quite emotional!

I felt that there was a wonderful syncronicity that she had become a woman on the eve of Beltane so I didn’t want to let it pass by, I wanted to mark this transition in someway – bearing in mind that this child is in no way Pagan. I asked for some suggestions from fellow pagan friends on what I could do, true to form they came through with many suggestions so a little ritual formed in my kind.

I made the newest Maiden a crown of green ivy with some Hawthorn flowers nestled into it.

I physically drew a line on the ground for her to step over and onto a new phase of life.

Our newest maiden lit the Beltane fire

and we sat and talked about the big change in her life. Her younger sister wanted to take part too so we all sat around the fire and talked of ‘womanly things’.

I have a good feeling that the eldest was a bit bemused that I wanted make such a deal of it and kept saying ‘Muuuum!’ But I think a little bit of her was a little bit pleased too…..and she was very pleased with her flower crown (her words!)

So I think this Beltane eve will live long in my memory, emotional memories.

And on that note, I would like to wish Beltane blessings for tomorrow, however you mark it, x

Imbolc/ La Feill Bride


It is that time of the year again, the wheel moves once more, this time around to Imbolc, Oimlec or any number of other names that this midway point can and does get called.  This point on the wheel is exactly the halfway point between Yule and the Spring Equinox.

Brigid, Brighid, Bride is an old Goddess, maybe not as old as others but she has been venerated for a very long time. She is the promise that Spring is on its way, that the earth is waking up, that the animals and birds are getting ready to breed (or in the case of sheep, give birth), she is of new beginnings, she is a midwife, she is of the forge and fire. She has many aspects, she is often referred to as the opposite half of the Cailleach, the old lady of Winter gives way to the younger woman of light and life, she has that many aspects that it is no wonder the Church sought to canonize her into St Brigid to help convert pagans.


This morning was another very cold and icy one, the unexpected snow from the day before had frozen overnight in the sub zero temps, everything was wearing diamonds and crystals and this meant I had to go out with my camera whilst collecting reeds to make my Crois Brigid for this evening.


It was a bit slippery underfoot but the park was very empty, quiet and very peaceful to be in, it was wonderful! Even when I fell over in quite deep snow and couldn’t get myself back up again, I was laughing out loud at my own antics.

I wandered about the park, thinking about Brigid and how I was going to mark Imbolc and honour her, noticing all the details that had been brought to life with a covering of hard frost, last years seeds heads given a new lease of life, showing off their intricacy. Details, its always the little details that I find stunning.



Eventually I decided to make my way over to the lake to collect the reed grass I was after for making the cross, here is a view of a quite Wintry inner city park lake!

 I managed to get down to the shore line to collect my reeds without falling in, to my great relief I might add. I turned around to scramble back up the path when I saw this little fellow in the tree looking at me.

   It was being incredibly brave or brazen, not sure which, I only had crumbs left in the dog biscuit bag so I shook out these crumbs and it was down on them so fast. It got so close, as long as I move slowly it wasn’t scared off. I had plenty of opportunity to take pictures and even some video (which I cant upload on to this blog apparently!)

It was a a truly magical moment for me, there is a lot of symbolism attached to robins, often considered messengers from spirits. They are a psychopomp, the herald of Spring (although maybe not just yet!), they symbolise family connections, new ideas, new starts, they can be an animal totem, a spirit guide, to name just a few. I will spend some more time exploring this encounter over the next few weeks.

I got home and started to make my Crois Brigid, I like to make the triple armed/triskele style cross instead of the better known four armed cross, for some reason it just feels more right to me and I feel it represents the triple aspects of Brigid.  I set up my altar;

I lit several candles around the room to symbolise the returning warmth of the sun, I had on my alter a bowl of ice that would melt overnight, I had a pot of soil which had a candle sunk into it that was lit to symbolise the warming of the Earth and under the pot of soil was a packed of seeds that I intended to sow.

I left out a cloth/scarf outside as is tradition for Brigid to bless as she wanders the land overnight, this cloth can then be used to treat ailments like headaches and sore throats by getting the patient to wear the cloth on the affected area.


Today is Imbolc itself, the weather here is bright and sunny but cold, which could imply that the Cailleach is out collecting more firewood to keep herself warm so Winter might not be over yet!

I went to my altar and I collected my seeds, soil and water, the water was poured onto the soil, as I sowed the seeds , I envisaged future plans germinating, taking root and growing as these seeds do.  I went outside to collect my (very cold!) scarf that had been passed over in the night to put it in safe place for future use.

Tonight we had a hearty soup, made from root vegetables, full of goodness from Mother Earth, I am looking forward to the future, there is plenty of possibility so I would like to take this opportunity to wish you Imbolc greetings and blessings, x



First dog walk of the 2019

New Year greetings! I hope you have all had a lovely Yule/Christmas/New Year and that you are looking forward to what a new year could bring?

I haven’t been out walking with the dog for a while and felt the need to get off my backside and stretch my legs a bit so I claimed the dog walking duties for today, grabbed the dog and off we went!

Finally the temperature had dropped last night after a period of mild weather, which is just plain wrong for Winter, there had been a slight frost and Mother Nature was wearing her crystals and diamonds in the sunshine.

I love how low winter sunshine highlights details that you could miss normally, like the angle of sun had highlighted these turkey tail fungi on the end of a felled tree.

After the (over)indulgence it felt good to be out walking in the fresh air, getting my blood moving around my body properly. I had burnt myself out on the run up to Christmas by trying to do it all but someone reminded me with a tarot card reading that I should stop trying to do it all, I should allow people to help me when they offer and to practice some self care and self love… find this tiny heart shaped leaf on the path right in front of me..

..messaged received!

I haven’t spent anytime in this park for far too long so decided that I really needed to walk the Labyrinth here, and shed any baggage from last year as I enter so I could leave lighter, ready to face this new year with a clean sheet.

I approached the Labyrinth as always in a respectful manner and asked permission. As I entered I instantly felt at home, welcomed back warmly. The path through the Labyrinth was harder to see than normal as the grass ‘walls’ hadn’t grown in Winter, but my feet knew the path off by heart and took me to the center without faltering.

Once at the center my ever faithful guardian was at hand so I could close my eyes and feel the birdsong…

Once I had spent my time at the center we walked outwards and I felt myself getting lighter and lighter….as I neared the end of the Labyrinth I noticed a young couple walking on the main path watching me, I then noticed that they sat down on the path and appeared to waiting for me to finish my walking meditation before they entered to do their own. I gave thanks once I exited….oh that felt better!

Next on my agenda was to go and see my old friend, the big Oak.

I haven’t spent any time with this old fellow in too long. I spoke with him and gave him a hug (and lost the dog!)

Eventually got the dog to return to me from wherever he had been snuffling/hiding so said my goodbyes to the Oak and we carried on with our amble in the sunshine. I could see more diamonds and cyrstals on the grass, well as signs of new life in the trees and shrubs. These catkins were postively glowing in the sun!

In the shaded parts of park there was still some signs of the cold temperature…I haven’t seen ice yet this year…I mean last year… know what I mean!

For a park slap bang in the middle of Toxteth, Liverpool, it really does have a lot of beautiful spots and hidden gems if you know where to look, I really am very lucky to spend time here and recharge.

That felt good, for both my body and my mind, really shouldn’t leave it as long!

Curiously for the whole time I was walking, there was either a robin or a male blackbird in my line of sight, they kept alternating with their appearances so I am off to look into the meanings of their presence…..other than it being Winter of course! 😉

Martinmass, Armistice Day and time spent in the woods.

It is Sunday.

It is Sunday 11th of November which makes it Armistice Day, this year it is exactly 100 years since the guns fell silent in the Great War.

It is a day for remembering the sacrifice made by so many souls in this war as well as every war that has come after it, such a waste of life on all sides.

I held my silence and my thoughts were with those that died, those who were injured in horrific ways, those that were left behind to mourn, as well as the animals that gave their lives while they performed essential roles.

I needed to get out and go for a walk in the woods, i needed the energy of the trees… off I went with wonderdog!

Off we went into our local woods, I love these woods.  They are not ancient woods, in fact half the area known as the woods were the grounds of a stately home, landscaped with folly’s built in for leisurely strolls by the well to do, after passing through the gatehouse and making your way up the stately driveway.  The mansion house is not there anymore, most of the land it was on it now part of the TV filming studio but there are remnants left and not just the overgrown rhodedendron shrubs.  The driveway is still there, again overgrown but it would have been an impressive way to reach your destination.

 Faded glory!

Now most of the woods are left and managed with quite a light hand, paths kept clear and dangerous tree branches removed etc but generally not landscaped which is nice and it makes for a nice haven for nature.

A lot of the trees are beech and at this time of the year, the light on a sunny autumnal day is gorgeous as it shines through the remaining golden leaves on the trees as some fall like confetti….it is a pleasure to spend time amongst the trees and the shrubs.

With the closing down of the plant year so to speak, with the trees showing us that it is good to let go of things that no longer serve us, my mind wandered back to the herself, the Callieach as we are in her time of the year. She is generally considered to rule from Samhain/Samhuinn over the darker months of the year.

However, with the changing of the calendar from Julian to Gregorian, modern festivals are deemed to be approx 7 days out now, so Samhain could well have been 7th Nov…..where am I wandering off to you may ask, well Matinmass or the festival of St Martin falls today on 11th of November.  This festival bears a lot of similarities to Samhain with the feasting and the ‘bloodletting’, slaughter of animals that wouldn’t make the winter but could therefore feed the people over the winter.

Martinmass was also a time for initiation in some local customs, not just bloodletting, there is an interesting article on Martinmass which can be found here, (there is an image in this article about animal sacrifice that some people may find offensive, please consider this a warning).

Martinmass was also one of the Scottish ‘term dates’, now called ‘Old Scottish Term dates’ as they have all been moved and fixed now.  Candlemass, Whitsun, Lammas and Martinmass were the legal dates when contracts could be written or terminated as well as employment by the lairds.  For more information, read here.

So there you have it, my thoughts and musings on Armistice Day and Martinmass as I walked my dog around the woods and spent sometime amongst the trees, surprising where your mind can wander to when you disconnect from society and technology for a short while.

Take care of you and yours, catch up soon, x



The wheel has turned once more and we have reached Samhain. For some pagans this is a New Year celebration as well as acknowledging that the veil has thinned and the spirit world is closer now so contacting/communing with your ancestors is easier.

I have been completely out of sorts for the last day or two and quite grumpy with it!

This meant I wasn’t in the right frame of mind for marking Samhain but this morning I gave myself a virtual shake and told myself to sort it out.

Tonight we are having a family meal, it might not be a traditional meal for Samhain but we are all going to be together and sharing food – it’s going to be messy finger food but it’s tasty, we all enjoy it and we all get to eat together.

Some will be put aside on a plate for any ancestor spirits that feel like popping in, I will show them the way by having a candle burning in a lamp all night in the window (it will be a real candle until I go to bed then I will change it for a battery LED candle for obvious safety reasons!)

As it is also considered a fire festival, I intend to have a small fire in a fire bowl out in the yard, I might try some divination while outside and I will write down things that no longer serve me and commit them to the fire for destruction. I will take stock of my final ‘harvest’, what I have learnt in the last year, what seeds/plans I can make for the new year coming.

I will also leave offerings to welcome The Cailleach as we now move into her time of the year. I have bread and mead to leave for her as we move into Oidhche Shamhna (Scottish gaelic for Samhain Night) and tomorrow will be Là Sahmna (Samhain day). I am looking forward to seeing what I get from her over the next few months.

As today is about honoring ancestors I decided to go to my local cemetery as I wanted to find some graves that were no longer being tended by relatives, to tidy them up and acknowledge that they were somebody’s ancestors.

My grandparents were both cremated and their ashes interred in the grounds of the chapel that they both helped set up but the gates are usually locked and I can’t get access to them…although being involved in setting up your own church, I’m not sure how my paganism would sit with their Christianity anyway.

This is the back entrance to my local cemetery, it’s not one of the oldest in Liverpool but I like it, even though it’s right next to a very busy main road there is a calmness and peacefulness to it.

The details put into the ‘back’ entrance shows that it was considered important when it was first created in 1856.

I don’t think I have ever seen a gravestone with this carved on to it before today!

It didn’t take me long to feel drawn to a gravestone that had toppled and needed cleaning.

Edward here had managed to outlive 3 wives, all of whom were remembered on this stone, along with his son.

The next stone I came to was Bessie’s.

I removed all the moss, mud and tree debris that had accumulated over the years, I got a stick and scraped out all the filled in details so her stone could be read and then also realised that it made reference to her son who had died young.

This appeared to set the tone for the rest of my time in the cemetery, my eye seemed to be drawn to the graves of those who died early and never got a chance to become an ancestor by having their own families.

Shortly I after this stone I noticed a funeral car and people standing beside a freshly dug grave, a priest had arrived and as he approached, the coffin bearers, only 2 of them, carried out a small white coffin.

Once again, someone else had been denied the chance of becoming an ancestor. It was a moment of profound sadness and further confirmed the theme of my visit today.

I turned and walked in another direction so as not to intrude on their anguish.

My walk home was sombre but I gave thanks that I haven’t experienced the pain of losing a child and hopefully never will.

As we enter into the dark part of the year which will include death in all it’s forms, from the death of plants, to the sleeping of the earth, hibernating animals that slow down so much they are on the point of death, to the greater number of deaths that naturally happen over winter, there is much to mourn but more to celebrate as we know that the light and the warmth will follow and return as it always does as the wheel turns again.

Have yourself a wonderful Samhain, x