Beltane May 1 The Celtic year is divided into the dark and the light. Samhain begins the dark half; its counterpart, Beltane, is the beginning of the light half. Beltane and Samhain therefore divide the year into the two primary seasons, Winter and Summer. Beltane went by many names: Beltaine in Ireland, Bealtuinn in Scotland, Shenn do Boaldyn on the Isle of Man and Galan Mai in Wales. It is also referred to as Cetsamhain which means "opposite Samhain." By Celtic reckoning, the actual Beltane celebration begins on sundown of the preceding day, April 30, because the Celts figured their days from sundown to sundown. The word "Beltane" literally means "bright" or "brilliant fire," and refers to the bonfires lit to celebrate this festival. Sundown was the time when the great Bel-fires would be kindled on the tops of the nearest beacon hill (such as Tara Hill, Co. Meath, in Ireland). Cattle and sheep which had been kept inside or close to the farmsteads during the long winter months could now be turned out into the fields or led away to their summer pastures. The tribal herds were ritually driven between the bonfires, to purify and protect them in the upcoming year. Healing herbs were burnt in the fires, producing smoke which would help destroy parasites and help prevent illness among cattle, sheep and other livestock. Another popular custom was to leap over the Beltane bonfire. Young people jumped the fire for luck in finding a spouse, and pregnant women jumped the fire to assure an easy delivery. Domestic fires, which were kept alight all through the year, were extinguished on Beltane Eve and then rekindled from the great Bel-fires with torches the next morning. Even these small household fires were sacred, and Celtic Christians developed trinitarian rituals associated with tending the household fires. When fires were smothered for the night, for example, the peat blocks were divided into three equal sections and prayed for in the name of the God of Life, the God of Peace and the God of Grace. Then the whole fire was covered in ashes in the name of the Three of Light, with the following prayer: "The sacred Three to save, to shield, to surround, the hearth, the house, the household, this eve, this night, O this eve, this night, and every night, each single night. Amen." Beltane is a holiday of fires, flowers, fertility, and frivolity—celebrating the reawakening of the earth and the return of life to the world. Handfastings—binding couples together for a year and a day, were traditionally performed on this day. It was customary for young lovers to spend the night in the woods. The best known tradition associated with the day is to dance around a tree while weaving greenery around it.
Imbolc is one of the four principal festivals of the Irish calendar, celebrated among Gaelic peoples and some other Celtic cultures either at the beginning of February or at the first local signs of Spring. Most commonly it is celebrated on February 2, since this is the cross-quarter day on the solar calendar, halfway between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox in the northern hemisphere. Originally dedicated to the goddess Brigid, in the Christian period it was adopted as St Brigid's Day. In Scotland the festival is also known as Là Fhèill Brìghde, in Ireland as Lá Fhéile Bríde, and in Wales as Gwyl Ffraed. Imbolc is traditionally a time of weatherprognostication, and the old tradition of watching to see if serpents or badgers came from their winter dens is perhaps a precursor to the North AmericanGroundhog Day. A Scottish Gaelic proverb about the day is: Thig an nathair as an tollLa donn Bride,Ged robh tri traighean dh’ an t-sneachdAir leachd an lair. "The serpent will come from the hole On the brown Day of Bride,Though there should be three feet of snowOn the flat surface of the ground." 
Free Comments and Graphics Yesterday and again today I have been battling a case of the flu. My elixir of choice for this lovely event has been ginger ale, but I don't stock it and I'm too sick to get up, get dressed and drive to the store, so I've decided to suffer in (not so) silence.
I have always been of the belief that the flu/a cold was 3 days coming, 3 days here, and 3 days going...3 being the "magick" number that it is....maybe I will just mix up a potion of Jose Quervo and kick some butt!
As I look out over the snow covered roads and fields, I am having thoughts of how much of my life I have put on hold for someday. I realize that now is someday, and hopefully with Her blessings, my path will lead me to a peaceful and contented place. I will burn white sage and meditate tonight, but for now...it's off to work!
It is time to light the first candle of the Yule log. The first of four. When the wheel has turned to Yule, light the log, and let Pan rule!
The Solstice has long been viewed as a time of rebirth..rebirth of the Sun as well.We light fires or candles to welcome the Sun's returning light. The Goddess slumbers throughout the Winter of Her labor, rests after Her delivery. This is a reminder that the ultimate product of death, is rebirth (a comforting thought at this time of year).
I believe in the One. In a time before time. I believe in the Lady, Precious and Devine. I believe in the Lord, Her consort and love. I believe that all blessings, Come from above. I believe in the moon, How it governs the tides. I believe in the wondrous secrets It hides. I believe in the Seasons, From Winter to Spring. And all of the bountiful Changes each brings. From planting to harvest, All things great and small... I give thanks to the One, Who created them all.
I was a grand-daughter, and daughter, I am still a mother, and what you call a dog-person. I am a Pagan, ex-Mormon, Ex-Catholic...and just an Ex-and I am evolving.
I am a killer of plants, spiders, mice and flies. I like bats, birds, cats, dogs, horses, and most other animals, except for those previously mentioned (yes I know some are insects) I am a Democrat who voted but not for Obama.Yet, I'm optomistic.
I am pro-choice, am for Gay rights, a strong military, the death penalty, and a lot more, and I am a senior citizen.
I have a strange sense of humor, love sci-fi, good coffee, good food, cooking, and the finer things in life (men). I think faster than I type, and I can't spell worth a darn, and am not exactly computer literate, but I try!
Come sit down and enjoy...leave your comment, and welcome to my world