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The Winter Solstice - Yule Lore The date varies from December 20 to December 23 depending on the year in the

Gregorian calendar. Yule is also known as the winter solstice in the northern hemisphere and the summer solstice in the southern hemisphere due to the seasonal differences. Yule, (pronounced EWE-elle) is when the dark half of the year relinquishes to the light half. Starting the next morning at sunrise, the sun climbs just a little higher and stays a little longer in the sky each day. Known as Solstice Night, or the longest night of the year, the sun's "rebirth" was celebrated with much joy. On this night, our ancestors celebrated the rebirth of the Oak King, the Sun King, the Giver of Life that warmed the frozen Earth. From this day forward, the days would become longer. Bonfires were lit in the fields, and crops and trees were "wassailed" with toasts of spiced cider. Children were escorted from house to house with

gifts of clove spiked apples and oranges which were laid in baskets of evergreen boughs and wheat stalks dusted with flour. The apples and oranges represented the sun. The boughs were symbolic of immortality (evergreens were sacred to the Celts because they did not "die" thereby representing the eternal aspect of the Divine). The wheat stalks portrayed the harvest, and the flour was accomplishment of triumph, light, and life. Holly and ivy not only decorated the outside, but also the inside of homes, in hopes Nature Sprites would come and join the celebration. A sprig of Holly was kept near the door all year long as a constant invitation for good fortune to visit tthe residents. Mistletoe was also hung as decoration. It represented the seed of the Divine, and at Midwinter, the Druids would travel deep into the forest to harvest it. The ceremonial Yule log was the highlight of the Solstice festival. In accordance to tradition, the log must either have been harvested from the householder's land, or given as a gift... it must never have been bought. Once dragged into the house and placed in the fireplace it was decorated in seasonal greenery, doused with cider or ale, and dusted with flour before set ablaze by a piece of last years log, (held onto for just this purpose). The log would burn throughout the night, then smolder for 12 days after before being ceremonially put out. Ash is the traditional wood of the Yule log. It is the sacred world tree of the Teutons, known as Yggdrasil. An herb of the Sun, Ash brings light into the hearth at the Solstice. A different type of Yule log, and perhaps one more suitable for modern practitioners would be the type that is used as a base to hold three candles. Find a smaller branch of oak or pine, and flatten one side so it sets upright. Drill three holes in the top side to hold red, green, and white (season), green, gold, and black (the Sun God), or white, red, and black (the Great Goddess). Continue to decorate with greenery, red and gold bows, rosebuds, cloves, and dust with flour. Many customs created around Yule are identified with Christmas today. If you decorate your home with a Yule tree, holly or candles, you are following some of these old traditions. The Yule log, (usually made from a piece of wood saved from the previous year) is burned in the fire to symbolize the Newborn Sun/Son. Deities of Yule: All Newborn Gods, Sun Gods, Mother Goddesses, and Triple Goddesses. The best known would be the Dagda, and Brighid, the daughter of the Dagda. Brighid taught the smiths the arts of fire tending and the secrets of metal work. Brighid's flame, like the flame of the new light, pierces the darkness of the spirit and mind, while the Dagda's

cauldron assures that Nature will always provide for all the children. Symbolism of Yule: Rebirth of the Sun, The longest night of the year, The Winter Solstice, Introspect, Planning for the Future. Symbols of Yule: Yule log, or small Yule log with 3 candles, evergreen boughs or wreaths, holly, mistletoe hung in doorways, gold pillar candles, baskets of clove studded fruit, a simmering pot of wassail, poinsettias, christmas cactus. Herbs of Yule: Bayberry, blessed thistle, evergreen, frankincense holly, laurel, mistletoe, oak, pine, sage, yellow cedar. Foods of Yule: Cookies and caraway cakes soaked in cider, fruits, nuts, pork dishes, turkey, eggnog, ginger tea, spiced cider, wassail, or lamb's wool (ale, sugar, nutmeg, roasted apples). Incense of Yule: Pine, cedar, bayberry, cinnamon. Colors of Yule: Red, green, gold, white, silver, yellow, orange. Stones of Yule: Rubies, bloodstones, garnets, emeralds, diamonds. Activities of Yule: Caroling, wassailing the trees, burning the Yule log, decorating the Yule tree, exchanging of presents, kissing under the mistletoe, honoring Kriss Kringle the Germanic Pagan God of Yule Spellworkings of Yule: Peace, harmony, love, and increased happiness. Deities of Yule: Goddesses-Brighid, Isis, Demeter, Gaea, Diana, The Great Mother. GodsApollo, Ra, Odin, Lugh, The Oak King, The Horned One, The Green Man, The Divine Child, Mabon.

Pagan Calendar of Days For 2013Here is a quick and extensive listing of pagan, wiccan, roman, magical, and other holidays for November 2012 through December 2013. The dates of the new and full moons are also listed. As you can see there is a reason to celebrate just about any day of the year. Some of the more obscure holidays have short explanations. As we post about the various festival days and celebrations, links will be updated, so be sure to bookmark this post. Note: some of the holidays are different depending on which side of the equator you are on. Also the dates of some festivals and feast days vary from year to year. November 2012 1: Pomona's Day 1: Day of the Dead 2: Festival of Woden 3: Feast of the Einherjar 5: Bonfire Night 11: Veteran's Day 11: Martinmas 13: New Moon 16: Night of Hekate 21: Sun enters Sagittarius 22: Thanksgiving day (United States) 25: Elder Tree Month begins - Celtic Calendar 25: Stir Up Sunday 4

27: 28: 30: 30:

Feast of Ullr Full moon - Mourning Moon - Lunar Eclipse St Andrew's Day Festival of Hecate Trivia (The night of the crossroads.)

December 2012 1: The festival of Poseidon, the Greek god of the sea. Poseidon is also the god of rebirth. 4: Bona Dea 5: Faunalia 9;: The festival of Ops, the Roman goddess of harvest. 11: The Septimontium 11: Agonalia 13: New Moon 13: The Sementivae, the second festival of Tellus, the Roman earth goddess. 15: The second festival of Consus, the Roman god of good council 17: Beginning of Saturnalia - festival of Saturn, the Roman god of agriculture. The most popular Roman festival, for on this day the roles of master and slave were reverted. 18: Eponalia 20: Mother Night 21: Winter Solstice or Yule 21: Litha (Southern Hemisphere) 21: Divalia - Angeronalia, festival of Angerona, the Roman goddess of secrecy. 22: Sun enters Capricorn 23: The Larentalia (Larentinalia), festival of Acca Larentia the Roman goddess who gave the early Romans their land. 25: Christmas Day 25: The birthday of Mithra, the Persian god of light and wisdom. 25: Festival of the Invincible Sun God 25: Feast of Frau Holle, Germanic goddess 26: Boxing Day 28: Full moon - Big Winter Moon 31: New Year's Eve 31: Festival of Hogmanay January 2013 2: Advent of Isis 3: Festival of Pax the Roman goddess of peace. 5: Festival of Lares Compitales - Roman guardian deities of crossroads.

5: Twelfth Night 6: Festival of Kore 7: Feast of Sekhmet, the Egyptian New Year's Day. 7: Epiphany 7: Distaff Day 8: Midwives' Day 9: The Agonium, festival of Janus, the Roman god of gates and doors, beginnings and endings. 10: Plough Monday 11: New Moon 11 and 15: The Carmentalia, festival of Carmenta, the Roman goddess of childbirth 16: Festival of Concordia, the Roman goddess of harmonious relations 17: Good Luck Day, the festival of Felicitas, the Roman goddess of good luck 21: Sun enters Aquarius 24: Feriae Sementivae - blessing the seeds 25: Up Helly Aa - Scottish Viking celebration 25: St Paul's Day 26: Full moon - Wolf Moon 30 - Feb. 2: Roman celebration of Februalia 31: Disfest/Disablot February 2013 1: Festival of Brigit, the Celtic goddess of healing, fertility, and patroness of smiths. 2: Imbolc - the Celtic festival marking the period of lactation of the ewes. 2: Lammas or Lughnasadh (Southern Hemisphere) 2: Candlemas 3: Setsubun, celebration - Japan 4: Disting - The Charming of the Plow 5 thru 17: Fornacalia - The Day of the Ovens 10: New Moon 12: Festival of Artemis, the Greek goddess of the hunt 13-21: The Parentalis - festival to honor the spirits of the ancestors. 14: Valentine's Day 15: Lupercalia - the festival of Lupercus, the Roman god of flocks and fertility. 17: Festival of Quirinus, god of war, storms and thunder. 21: Feralia - an ancient Roman Day of the Dead 21: Sun enters Pisces 22: Caristia - Roman holiday of family reunions 23: Festival of Terminus, the Roman god of boundaries and border

markers. 24: Flight of the King - Regifugium 25: Full moon -- Quickening Moon 28: The epic poem, Kalevala, is celebrated by the Finns with parades and readings from the poem. March 2013 1: Matronalia, the Festival of Women 1: New Year's Day in the old Roman calendar. 1: Saint David's Day 2: Holy Wells Day, the day of Ceadda, the Celtic goddess of healing springs and holy wells. 8: Pancake Day 10: Mothering Sunday - 4th Sunday in Lent 11: New Moon 12: Marduk's Feast Day 14: Feriae Marti - Festival of Mars 16 - 17 : Bacchanalia - The festival of Bacchus, the Roman god of wine 17: Liberalia, the festival of Liber and Libera, a Roman fertility god and goddess 17: St Patrick's Day 19 - 23: The Mivervalia and Quinquatria, main festivals of Minerva, the Roman goddess of war, wisdom arts and trades. 19: Ides of March 19: Festival of Anna Perenna, the Roman goddess of the circle of the year. 20: Ostara - Vernal Equinox 20: Festival of Isis 20: Mabon (Southern Hemisphere) 21: Festival of Salii 21: Sun enters Aries 22: Hilaria 27: Full moon Crow Moon 29: Good Friday 30: The Festival of Salus, the Roman goddess of public safety and welfare. 31: Easter Sunday 31: Festival of Luna, the Roman goddess of the moon. April 2013 1: Dyngus Day - Easter Monday 1: April Fool's Day / Loki's Day

1: The Veneralia, the festival of Venus, the Roman goddess of love and beauty. 4: Megalesia - Celebrates the accuracy of the Sibylline oracles 5: Lady Luck Day, the festival Fortuna, the goddess of good fortune 6: National Tartan Day 8: Hana-Matsuri - Japanese Flower Festival to honor the Buddha's birthday. 8: Geranium Day - England 9: A-ma Festival - Portugal and China 10: New Moon 12 - 19: Ludi Cereales 12: Chhau Festival - India 13: Songkran - Thailand 15: Fordicia, the festival of Tellus, the Roman earth goddess 16: The feast day of St. Bernadette. 19: Festival of Ceres, a Roman corn goddess. 20: Furukawa Matsuri - Japan 21: Palilia (Parilia), the festival of Pales, the Roman goddess of sheperds and flocks. This is also the legendary founding date of Rome. 21: Sun enters Taurus 21: Ascent Of The Christ Of The Gypsies - Holy Wednesday 22: Festival of Ishtar 22: Earth Day 23: St George's Day 25: Full moon -- Wind Moon 25: The Robigalia, the festival of Robigus, a Roman corn god. 27: Peppercorn Ceremony - Bermuda 28 - May 1 The Floralia, the festival of Flora, Roman goddess of fruitfulness and flowers. 29: Tako-Age - Japan - Kite Flying Day 30: May Day Eve - Walpurgisnacht 30: Beltine, on this Caileach Beara, a Celtic goddess, turns to stone. She is reborn on October 31, Samhain. May 2013 1: 1: 1: 1: 5: 5: 6: 8: Beltane - Mayday Festival of Belenus, the Celtic god of fire and the sun. Samhain (Southern Hemisphere) Bona Dea Humane Day - United States - 1st Sunday in May Cinco de Mayo Durdevan - Feast of St. George The festival of Mens, the Roman goddess of mind and consciousness.

9: New Moon 9, 11, 13: Roman festival - Feast of the Lemures - in honor of the Lemures, the spirits of dead family members who wander the earth on these three spring nights. 12: Mother's Day 13: Hawthorn Moon begins - 6th month of the Celtic Calendar 15: Festival of Mercury, the Roman god of merchants and travellers. 20: Sun enters Gemini 24: The Thargalia 25: Full moon -- Hare's Moon 25: Festival of the Holy Marys - Gypsy festival and pilgrimage 27: Frigga Blot 30: Memorial Day - Einherjar Day 31: Flores de Mayo June 2013 1: The festival of Carna, the Roman goddess of bodily organs. 2: Festival of Juno 3: The festival of Bellona the Roman goddess of war. 3: Pharmakos 4: The Rosalia 8: New Moon 9: Festival of Vesta, the Roman goddess of the hearth. 10: Oak Moon begins - 7th month of the Celtic calendar 11: Festival of Mater Matuta, old Italian goddess of the dawn. 12: Zeus' Day 14: Birthday of the Muse 14: Vidar's Day 16: Night of a Teardrop 17: Ludi Piscatari 20: Father's Day 21: Summer Solstice - Litha 21: Yule (Southern Hemisphere) 21: Sun enters Cancer 23: Full moon - Honey Moon 23: Day of Bad Omens 23: Rousalii 24: The festival of Fata, the Roman goddesses of fate and chance. 24: Saint John's Day - Feast of the Dews 24: Snziene - A Romanian Midsummer Festival 29: Feoh - First day of the Rune Cycle July 2013

2: Feast of Expectant Mothers 3 thru Aug 11: Dog Days of Summer 3: Festival of Cerridwen 4: Independence Day 5: Poplifugia 7: Festival of the Handmaidens - Nonae Caprotinae ("the nones of the wild fig") 7: Tanabata 7: Rumilia Festival 8: New Moon 8: Holly Moon begins - 8th month of the Celtic Calendar 9: Day of Un the Wise Person 10: Day of Hel 10: Festival of Knut the Reaper 10: Lady Godiva Day 11: Naadam Festival 13: O-Bon Festival - welcoming the spirits of the dead 14: Uruz - The second rune cycle begins 15: St. Swithin's Day 15: Day of Rauni 16: Feast of Our Lady of Carmel 17: Festival of Amaterasu - Shinto Sun Goddess 17: The Maidens Fair on Hen Mountain 18: Day of Bad Omens 19: Feast of Kuan Yin 19: Lucaria 20: Moon Day 21: Sun enters Leo 22: Full moon - Buck Moon 22: Feast of Mary Magdalene 23: Neptunalia - the festival of Neptune, the Roman god of the sea. 23: Sign of the Sunflower Begins 23: Saint Anne's Eve 25: Furinalia 27 - 31: The Five Epagomenal Days 27: Birthday of Osiris 28: Birthday of Horus 29: Birthday of Set 30: Birthday of Isis 31: Birthday of Nephthys August 2013

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1: Lammas or Lughnasadh 1: Festival of Lugh, the Celtic hero god. 1: Imbolc (Southern Hemisphere) 4: Festival of the Tooth 5: Hazel Moon begins - 9th moon of the Celtic Calendar 6: New Moon 6: Festival of Thoth 7: Blessing of the Sea 9: Festival of Sol Indigis, the Roman sun god. 12: Blessing of the Boats 13: The Vertumnalia, the festival of Vertumnus, the Roman god of seasons, gardens and orchards. 13: Day of Hecate 15: Festival of Torches - Nemoralia 15: Herbal Holy Day 17: The Portunalia, the festival of Portunes, the Roman god of gates, doors and harbours. 19: The Vinalia Rustica 20: Full Moon -- Corn Moon 21: Festival of Consus, the Roman god of good council. 21: Sun enters Virgo 22: Sign of the Morning Glory begins 23: Freyfaxi 23: The Volcanalia, the festival of Vulcan, the Roman god of fire. 25: The Opiconsivia, the harvest festival of Ops, the Roman goddess of harvest. 27: Volturnalia September 2013 2: The Sign of the Vine begins - 10th moon of the Celtic Calendar 5: New Moon 5: Labor Day 9: Double Ninth Day 9: Chrysanthemum Day 13: Friday the 13th 19: Full Moon --Harvest Moon 19: Chinese Moon Festival -The Festival of Chang O, on the full moon nearest the autumnal equinox, the Chinese people pay homage to the moon goddess Chang O. Some Chinese celebrate this day as the moon's birthday. 19: The Fast of Thoth, this day-long fast honors the Egyptian god of wisdom and magic. 21: International Day of Peace

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21: The feast of the Divine Life, this ancient Egyptian feast honored the great goddess in her three-fold aspect as mother (creator), daughter (renewer), and dark mother (the absolute). 21: Sun enters Libra 23: Fall Equinox or Mabon 23: Michaelmas 23: Ostara (Southern Hemisphere) October 2013 1: Festival of Fides, the Roman goddess of good faith, honesty and oaths. 3: The festival of Dionysus, the Greek god of wine and revelry, also known as Bacchus to the Romans. 4: New Moon 4: Feast of Ceres 6: Day of Bad Omens 9: The festival of Felicitas, the Roman goddess of good luck and joy. 11: Winter Nights - Sacred to Freya 11: The Meditrinalia, the festival of Meditrina, the Roman goddess of healing. 12: The festival of Fortuna Redux, the Roman goddess of successful journeys and safe returns from those journeys. 13: The festival of Fontus, the Roman god of springs. 18: Full moon -- Blood Moon 19: The Armilustrium, the second festival of Mars, the Roman god of war. On this day, military arms were ritually purified and put in storage for winter. 21: Sun enters Scorpio 31: Halloween Oct 31 - Nov 1 Samhain, the Celtic festival marking the beginning of the winter and the Celtic New Year. Also the rebirth of Caileach Beara, the Celtic goddess who turned to stone on May 1 (Beltane). November 2013 1: Samhain 1: Beltane (Southern Hemisphere) 1: Day of the Dead 1: Pomona's Day 2: Festival of Woden 3: New Moon 5: Bonfire Night 11: Veteran's Day - Hero's Day 11: Lunantishees Day - Celtic Faery Day

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11: Martinmas 13: Epulum Jovis 15: Feronia Festival 16: Night of Hekate 17: Full moon -- Mourning Moon 21: Sun enters Sagittarius 24: Brumalia 24: The feast of Baba Yaga. On the full moon of November, the supreme crone goddess of old Russia is honored with a feast day. Once honored as an important old goddess, she is now often portrayed as a wicked old witch. 24: Stir Up Sunday 27: Feast of Ullr 28: Thanksgiving day (United States) 30: Festival of Hecate Trivia (The night of the crossroads.) December 2013 1: The festival of Poseidon, the Greek god of the sea. Poseidon is also the god of rebirth. 2: New Moon 4: Bona Dea, a Roman fertility goddess 5: Faunalia 9;: The festival of Ops, the Roman goddess of harvest. 11: Agonalia 13: Friday the 13th 13: The Sementivae, the second festival of Tellus, the Roman earth goddess. 15: The second festival of Consus, the Roman god of good council. 17: Full moon - Long Nights Moon 17: Beginning of Saturnalia - festival of Saturn, the Roman god of agriculture. The most popular Roman festival, for on this day the roles of master and slave were reverted. 18: Eponalia 20: Mother Night 21: Winter Solstice. 21: Divalia - Angeronalia, festival of Angerona, the Roman goddess of secrecy. 22: Winter Solstice or Yule 22: Litha (Southern Hemisphere) 22: Sun enters Capricorn 23: The Larentalia (Larentinalia), festival of Acca Larentia the Roman goddess who gave the early Romans their land. 25: Christmas Day

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25: 25: 25: 26: 31: 31:

The birthday of Mithra, the Persian god of light and wisdom. Festival of the Invincible Sun God Feast of Frau Halle, Germanic goddess Boxing Day New Year's Eve Festival of Hogmanay

Cranberry Pinwheels 1 (170 g) package dried sweetened cranberries 1 (250 g) container cream cheese spread 1 cup crumbled feta cheese 1/4 cup chopped green onion 4 large flour tortillas or 4 large wheat flour tortillas or 4 large spinach tortillas Directions: 1. Combine all ingredients except tortillas, mix well. 2 Divide and spread mixture evenly among tortillas. 3. Roll up tightly, wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least one hour. 4. To serve cut into 12 slices. 5. A nice variation is to add thin slices of ham on top of the spread before rolling.

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Yule or Yuletide ("Yule-time")


The Winter Solstice also called, Yuletide, Yulefest, Yules, Jul, Juletid, Julfest, Jl, Jl, Jol, Joul, Joulu, Julud, Joelfeest, Gol, Feailley Geul, and Midwinter Yule is a winter festival that was initially celebrated by the historical Germanic people as a pagan religious festival, though it was later absorbed into, and equated with, the Christian festival of Christmas. The festival was originally celebrated from late December to early January on a date determined by the lunar Germanic calendar around the 21st. The festival was placed on December 25 when the Christian calendar (Julian calendar) was adopted. Scholars have connected the celebration to the Wild Hunt. Terms with an etymological equivalent to "Yule" are used in the Nordic countries for the Christian Christmas (with its religious rites), but also for other holidays of the season. Yule is also used to a lesser extent in English-speaking countries to refer to Christmas and Pagan Holiday's such as the Winder Solstice. Customs such as the Yule log, Yule goat, Yule boar, Yule singing, and others stem from Yule. The fact that Yule is not etymologically tied to Christianity. Yule in the Nordic countries is also celebrated by many non-Christians and even by the non-religious. The non-religious treat Yule as an entirely secular tradition. A number of Neo-pagans have introduced their own rites back reclaiming the traditions as theirs.

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Winter Meditation Incense


The Winter Meditation Incense is amazing for opening your memories and mind to the season. Mix amounts according to need. 2 1 1 2 parts Pine part Juniper part Cedar to 3 parts frankincense

Using mortar and pestle grind all ingredients together. Once blended carefully form into small balls. About eraser size. Lay out on wax paper to air dry over night. Store in air tight bottle. Burn on charcoal.

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Yule; The Winter Solstice


The days long and cold shadows fall as the night grows near, Yet within our hearts we know the light that holds know fear. We gather in the darkness listening upon the crystal air, Our love and joy is a warmth we all shall freely share. Immortal light of love and life forever full and free, Virgin Goddess calls beckoning like the never ebbing sea. Within Her beauty and Her love the fertile seed has grown, His time grows close as with His warmth and light has shown. With only a spark the flame shall burn upon this shortest day, As our Lady gives rebirth unto our Lord we pray. Fire and cauldron smoke and sky we walk a circle round, In ecstasy we sing for abundance shall abound. For with the dawning of the day there will be no strife, Our Goddess queen of night within this birth assures us life. Our Lord is born growing within the horizons seen, Mighty Sun God, Lord and King gives us promise of growth and green. From our Great Mothers womb again life has been reborn, For as the Wheel of Life shall turn all death and life is formed. In honor we give unto this night our Lord and Lady praise, Their love shall grow and feed the earth with warmth upon the days.

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And when again we shall be called unto the crisp clear night, Shall we be gathered together in true heart, love and light.

Sabbats ~ Yule
(21 - 22 December)
Also known as-: The Winter Solstice, Christmas Associated Deities: - Mother Berta, Father Winter, Santa Clause, Kriss Kringle, St Nick, Kings of Holly and Oak Associated Herbs: -Chamomile, rosemary, ginger, sage and cinnamon Associated Stones: - Quartz crystal, blue sunstone, emerald, ruby, sapphire The world is frozen and looking on the surface of nature everything is asleep. But deep in the earth, plants are now quietly putting out their shoots and building themselves up for the arrival of spring. This is the season of rebirth. All the dreams and ideas you had at Samhain can now be born and will grow in strength as the Sun now begins to grow in strength on its journey towards the summer solstice.

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The origins of Yule date back to the Egyptians who held the festival to celebrate the rebirth of Horus who was the son of Isis and Osiris and Horus took the form of the Sun. Because greenery was seen as magical growth and they wanted the Sun to stay longer, they decorated every thing in sight in all the greenery. Others followed and when the Romans came along they named their festival Saturnalia and brought in things such as candles, singing, lavish feasting and extravagant gift giving. This spread through Europe and became Yule. The wild partying and chaos of the Roman festival can still be seen today in the seasons parties and normal behaviour being replaced by people acting the fool, thus it is also known as the Feast of Fools. Witches bring evergreens into the house to remind them or the return of the Son and the growing season. The red berry of the holly symbolises the resting mother giving birth and life returning to the land. The green reminds them of the Holly King who rules until this time. Mistletoe is another decoration with a strong pagan connection where it is considered magical because it grows between the earth and the sky and is not rooted to the ground. The berries of mistletoe symbolises the semen of the God. Many pagans go out before dawn on the Summer Solstice to welcome the return of the Sun. At Yule the Oak King is reborn. The Oak King and the Holly King, in legend, rule the year between them. The Oak King rules from midwinter to midsummer, when the light increases and the Holly King rules from midsummer to mid winter when the light decreases. At the solstices covens may enact the battle to see which King wins the battle but the rightful King always wins. A Yule log would have been brought into the house and decorated with candles and each person would light a candle to express a wish for the season ahead. Nowadays, it is usual to make a Yule log and cover it with chocolate as not many home have an open fireplace. Ways to celebrate Yule:The alter can be decorated with evergreens, poinsettias, holly and mistletoe. Red white and green candles to symbolise the birth and regrowth of the season can be placed on the alter. Ginger pine and sage oils or incense can be burned. Cast the circle and invite the elements of air (east), fire (south), water (west) and earth (north) to join you and protect you in your rite. Now ask the God and Goddess to join you and start with an apple juice toast to the Holly King.

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Name and think about some of the traits of darkness such as peace, quiet, regeneration and dreams. Then imagine the Sun rising high up in the sky out of the darkness and reflect on all the things you hope for in the New Year. Thank the God and Goddess for being with you, then say farewell and thank the elements in the order you invited them in. Close the circle. NEVER LEAVE BURNING CANDLES UNATTENDED

'Twas The Night Before Yule


'Twas the night before Yule, and all through the Coven, The cookies were baked and removed from the oven. The bayberry candles were lit on the table, The altar was wrapped in a new cloth of sable.

The children were nestled, all snug in their beds, While visions of Yule time danced in their heads. Their stockings were hung by the chimney with care,

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In hopes that some presents soon would be there!

With Steve in his new robe, and I in mine, We were asking our Goddess her blessing divine. When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter, We sprang from our Circle to see what was the matter.

Away to the window, tripping over my sash, My eyes were a-glamoured with a bright silver flash. The moon on the breasts of the Goddess and God Drew my eyes to behold the blessed Circle they trod.

When, what to my wondering eyes should appear, But the manifestations of all those we hold Dear. The physical forms of those whom we pray to, Even Saint Nick, and his miniature sleigh, too! Jehovah, Mohammet, Hera and Thor. Zeus, Freya, Brahma, and many more. All the Spiritual Entities who'd ever been mentioned. Even some, like dear Loki, who sowed seeds of dissension.

They greeted each other with smile, warm and sweet. Then, forming a Circle, they all took a seat. With multiple Voices all joined as One, The Quarters were Called. And, when that was done.

The Chalice was passed from Hand to Hand.

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Then, a blanket of silence enfolded the land. A crystal clear Voice began to hold sway. Which Deity spoke? I could not say. But, clearly, I heard all the love in that Voice. It caused my tired heart to take flight and rejoice. "Our Children, it seems, have missed the whole point. "We now join together, their hearts to anoint.

"Pour all of Our love O'er their hearts of stone. "Let them see that together they're never alone! "Show them it matters not which of Us that they choose. "Their sad hate and mistrust cause each of Us to lose!"

As I stood there transfixed, I could suddenly see If we all stand as one, what a world this could be! Put ALL of our differences well behind us. Let the love of the Gods enfold and remind us.

We ARE all the same, though varied our skins. We all dream the same dreams, we all sin the same sins. With a look of enlightenment etched on my face, I beheld all the Gods in Their glory and grace!

They all bowed Their heads then said So mote it be!" They all smiled at each Other bestowing winks on me. One by One they disappeared from my sight.

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Just the Goddess and God were left in the light.

As slowly They twinkled, fading by degree, "Happy Yuletide to all!! Blessed be times three!"

Mistletoe
*Considered Poison Mistletoe is and ancient and awesome herb that is held my witches for its extremely powerful magick and even in-worlders respect its power for love during the Yule/Christmas holidays. Harvesting Mistletoe with my Great Grandmother was always great fun for me. I tended to be a bit of a tomboy and gathering Mistletoe allowed me to use my aptitude for climbing trees. If you have ever seen Mistletoe growing it seems to always affixes itself to the highest branches of the trees. My job was to carefully climb the tree under the watchful directions of my Great Grandmother and break off the Mistletoe for its lofty protective branch and drop it carefully into my Great Grandmothers long skirt as she held it widely spread like a net. Folk Names; Witches Broom, Witch Herb, Devils Fuge, Holy Wood, Druids Herb and Thunderbesem. Magickal Powers; Love, Luck, Protection, Fertility, Exorcism, Health and Hunting.

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Mistletoe is hung above doorways to catch a kiss from those whom pass unsuspectingly under where it hangs. The one you have been kissed under the Mistletoe the one you kiss will be your love true throughout all eternity. Mistletoe and Mistletoe wood is made or carved into charms to assure luck when hunting. Although I believe that was more for when hunting was necessary for survival and not killing for the so-called sport. Charms are also made of Mistletoe to bring luck protection. Mistletoe when placed under a bed filled with love will assure the couple will conceive a child. When done during full Moons the child will have light hair and dark Moons mean the child will have dark hair. Mistletoe can also be burned in added to spells for fertility. It is also carried as and ancient fertility symbol. Mistletoe is good to strengthen all magickal powers and magickal working of any kind. Also because Mistletoe is an evergreen plant it is used in healing magick and spells for youth. Medical Uses; Heart Problems, Strengthen Capillarity Walls and the Immune System. Mistletoe made into a mild tonic is use for the heart and to lower blood pressure it will also slow the hearts rate. Mistletoe is also used in infusion and tonics to strengthen the capillary walls. Mistletoe infusions and teas are used to stimulate the immune systems and work to inhibit the growth of some tumors. Other; Mistletoe is toxic in large amounts and should be used with care.

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Cookie Cocktails for Adults


Chocolate Peppermint Cookie:
3/4oz Partida Blanco Tequila 1oz Peppermint Schnapps 3/4oz Godiva Liqueur 1-1/2oz cream Chocolate syrup and candy canes for garnish Rim martini glass with chocolate syrup and crushed candy canes. Shake ingredients in a shaker with ice and strain into martini glass.

Toasted Macaroon:
1 oz Coconut Milk 1-1/2oz Coconut Rum 1/4oz Licor 43 1/2oz Partida Blanco Tequila 1/2oz Frangelico Combine ingredients in a shaker and shake with ice. Strain into a glass filled with ice and garnish with toasted coconut shavings on top.

Snickerdoodle:

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1oz Partida Resposado Tequila 3/4oz Baileys 1/2oz Butterscotch Schnapps 3/4oz Cream Splash of Cinnamon Schnapps Cinnamon stick for garnish Combine all ingredients in a shaker and shake with ice. Strain into martini glass and garnish with a cinnamon stick.

Sugar Cookie:
2-1/2oz Partida Resposado Tequila 1 Tsp Brown Sugar Brown Sugar for garnish Rim a cordial glass with brown sugar. Add tequila and brown sugar into a shaker with ice and hake ingredients well. Strain into glass.

Seven Layer Cookie:


3/4oz Godiva Liqueur 3/4oz Coconut Rum 1/2oz Butterscotch Schnapps 1/2oz Partida Anejo Tequila 1/4oz Frangelico 1/2oz Baileys 1/2oz Amaretto Garnish rim of a martini glass with crushed cookie crumbs. Shake all ingredients in a shaker with ice and strain into martini glass.

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DANCING IN A WICCAN WONDERLAND


"Alexander & Aarcher" Pagans sing, are you listenin', Altar's set, candles glisten, It's a Magickal night, we're having tonight, Dancing in a Wiccan Wonderland Blades held high, censer smoking, God and Goddess, we're invoking, Through Elements Five, we celebrate life, Dancing in a Wiccan Wonderland, Queen of Heaven, is in Her place, Triple Goddess, now the Crone Face, Above and Below, She's the Goddess we know, Dancing in a Wiccan Wonderland Now the God, is the Provider, Supplying game for our Fire, Above and Below, He's the Horned One we know, Dancing in a Wiccan Wonderland In a Circle we can light a Yule Fire, And await the rising of the Sun, It's the Great Wheel turning for the new year, loaded with abundance and great fun. Later on, by the fire,

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Cone of Power, gettin' higher It's a Magickal Night we're having tonight, Dancing in a Wiccan Wonderland

A Yule Story for Children ~ The Tiniest Fairy ~


In a time before time had been named, when life danced as a dazzling rainbow upon the mystical Earth, magick lived inside each earthen creature. Some, the big ones, were having a
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harder time seeing the magick now, than in the past. They were starting to forget that magick is all around you, if only you believed. Alicia was a small and tiny earthen spirit with sparkling blue eyes and a pinched up nose; even in the fairy world, where all things are small, she was the smallest of them all. Her home was deep inside the strong and twisting roots of a big Oak. It was safe and none of the winter cold snows could find their way a in. She loved playing around her cozy and warm home with her mom and dad. They would play hide and seek and she could easily hide in the corners or under the furniture. They would read books by the fire light and sing songs that only the fairies knew. Alicia was frightened of the other earthen creatures, as well as of what might be outside her cozy home under the big Oak. She had never been out before and saw no reason to go into the outside. When company came over Alicia would not come out of her tiny seed pod bed. When the Bunny family who lived next door came to visit, she was frightened that being so small, one of the many bunny babies might accidentally hop on her. She would only peek over the beds edge with her tiny pinched nose when the Gloends, a family of glowworms; came to visit, because she wanted to see where the warm yellow glow was coming from. At dinner one evening, Alicias mom and dad told her that soon winter's hold would be ending. That frightened Alicia since she only knew the winter and could not imagine what might happen if it was to end. They explained to her that in all the magickal world, it was her
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magick that would call in the changing of seasons and the turning of the great wheel. On the eve of the next night Alicia, her mom and her dad would go on a journey into the forest. Here, there would be a great gathering and all the mystical creatures of Earth would see her gift of magick. But Alicia shivered with fear -- what was this wheel and how can she stop this magick and changing? She liked things just as they were and didnt want anything to change at all. She didnt want to go to a gathering where so many would be. She didnt know what this gift was that she was to give. What if she got lost and no one could find her? Or maybe the others would see her. Maybe they would not like her or make fun of her or laugh at her being so small. Her greatest fear was that maybe she had no magick. She had not seen it. She couldnt fly like her mom and dad, she kept falling on her elbows. She couldnt make things like flowers or snowflakes like her mom and dad; all she ended up with was some ice that melted. She couldnt even make light with her wand. How would her parents feel when they found out, what would she do? Even as frightened as Alicia was of going into the outside, she was more frightened of what others might think of her. She didnt want to disappoint her mom and dad, so she decided it would be best if she hid. She would go into the outside; no one would look for her there. She would not go very far. Just far enough away where she could hide until the gathering was over, and then the change would not happen. Alicias mom was roasting acorns for the great gatherings feast and her dad was busy polishing up his ice wand. Alicia knew no one would see her leave, or think she would go into the outside alone, since she never had before. With her wand in a small bag tied to her waist, Alicia carefully opened the door of her house and stepped into the outside.
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She closed the door quickly and quietly so her mom and dad would not hear it creak. Then, she turned to see what was here in this outdoors. It was white everywhere. She walked along for a little while when all of a sudden crunch she sunk into the snow up to her wing tips. It took a bit of work but she wriggled her way up and out of the snow. Now she was really cold and she could see it was getting darker. The bright bluish color of the sky was now turning a purple hue with streaks of red and yellow. She wasnt sure, but if night was coming she had to hide quickly. If she could fly just to the edge of the forest she would find a place to stay until the gathering was over and then she could go home again. Then it would be safe because nothing would change. That is what she wanted. Alicia was frighten and getting colder, but she had made up her mind. She had to do this, or everything she knew was going to change forever. She shook herself off and looked toward the forest edge. With all her will and might she jumped up and began flying forward. Then back a little, then up, then down, then around in some circles and then slower and then faster and then it happened. Bang! She flew right into a tree branch hanging low weighted heavy by the snow. Alicia did not know what exactly had happened as she rubbed her head, but when she rose up again out of the snow it had gotten very dark. She could see tiny lights twinkling above her now. She looked around trying to figure out what direction to go. By now the gathering must be over and she could go home. Everything would stay the same. But which way was home? Alicia couldnt see where to go, so she didnt want to try to fly. What if she hit another tree, it was dark now and she couldnt make anything out, plus her head still hurt from before. She had to be very careful deciding what way to go now. All of a sudden, she heard someone calling her. Alicia, Alicia.
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She felt her body begin to shake so hard that the tiny ice cycles that had formed on the tips of her wings, tinkled like little bells. As she turned around to look behind her, she saw a woman lying on a big pile of fur blankets. She was not a fairy, but she was beautiful, dressed in a green, red and white gown. Hundreds of earthen creatures stood all around her, many Alicia had never seen before, but none were scared or frightened at all. Although Alicia didnt understand it, she wasnt frightened either. There seemed to peace about this woman, it was something calming. Alicia, I have been waiting for you. I need your help. the Lady said. Waiting for me? Alicia asked. Yes, Alicia, she said. Its dark now and we need your light to light the way, so that we can see what lies before us. My light? Alicia asked, remembering she had not been able to make her wand light before. Its your magick Alicia, your magick that will call the light from within me. the Lady said. Alicia slowly began to walk toward the woman. Thats when she saw that this quiet lady was going to have a baby, and she was going to have it any moment. All the fears and worries Alicia carried with her were beginning to melt away, just like the ice on her wing tips. As she looked into the meadow green eyes of this lady she wanted more than anything else in her small life to make a light for her. Alicia, still trembling, took her wand from its little bag, and raised it up. With every magickal hope she had ever had, she put her energy into lighting her wand. The lady smiled gently at her and in that instance there was a great flash of light which came from the tip of that tiny wand. It was a brilliant luminous light which filled every corner of the night.

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As Alicia held her wand high she looked over to see that now the lady was holding in her arms a baby; a wonderful little baby boy. Suddenly, she understood it all, everything her mom and dad had been telling her. This was the magick, this was her special gift. Alicia, the tiniest of all fairies, she was the one who carried the spark, the spark which released the light of the world and the turning of the wheel of life. In her tiny being she had carried that magick, the magick to unlock the power of love and understanding for the world to share. Standing in that brilliant light, Alicia understood who the Lady was and the importance of this baby. She was a part of the rebirth of the Light. This baby was the Light again reborn of the Goddess. The beautiful Lady was the Goddess of life, and Alicia was that spark of magick which survives all time and through which we find boundless possibilities. Soon the edge of the forest was filled with earthen creatures and spirits from all over the mystical world. Alicias mom and dad watched their fairy child as she beamed with joy. The Lady holding her baby boy, blessed all those who shared in this time of magick as the feast was served and great happiness was shared by all. Alicia didnt even notice that she was floating on the air. She was no longer weighted down by all her silly worries or fears. She knew that even though she was tiny she had the power to light the world. Now she understood, magick is all around you if you only believe, and trust in yourself. So each year as you light a candle to call the light, remember the tiniest fairy, for it only takes one tiny spark to give light unto the whole world. Blessed be our Lady the Mother of Light.

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MEAGAN AND THE YULE SOLSTICE by Kathryn Dyer 1991 Once upon a time there was a little girl named Meagan. She lived in a house that had lots of woods behind it. She lived with her mommy and daddy, her big brother Corwin and her beautiful cat named Starweaver. Meagan loved to watch Starweaver play with the snow in the winter. He would try to catch the flakes as they came down from the sky. Sometimes he would get mad when the flakes would melt and then his tail would start swishing from side to side. Meagan's parents told her not to mess with Starweaver when his tail was swishing like that. "When Star swishes his tail back and forth it means that he is mad or frustrated," said her father Michael, "and playing with him would be like someone teasing you when you're mad or don't feel good." Meagan could sure understand that! "What does frustrated mean Daddy?" she asked.
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"Frustrated is how you feel when you are trying very hard to do something and it won't work right. Like when you were learning how to dress yourself and you couldn't get your head through the neck of a shirt." explained Michael. Meagan knew just how that felt and she promised never to bother the cat when his tail swished. But today Starweaver wasn't swishing his tail. He was following Meagan and Corwin into the woods and chasing shadows. Meagan and Corwin had gone down the path into the woods to gather green fir branches, mistletoe and holly. It was Christmas time and they were helping to decorate the house. Later they would go with their parents to pick out a live tree to decorate and then plant in the Circle behind the house. Meagan's family were Pagans, but they also celebrated Christmas when Santa Claus came. Meagan's mother Elizabeth told her that many people would celebrate a God's birthday at the middle of the winter or the Yule Solstice. Meagan knew that the Yule Solstice was the longest night of the year. Of course, many Christians celebrated the birthday of Jesus at Christmas. But before there were Christians some people would celebrate the birthday of Mithras, one of the old Gods, or some of the other Solar Gods. Solar means that the God is in charge of the Sun and Light. Meagan could see how the sun would be very important in the cold of Winter. Meagan's family celebrated two holidays in the winter. They would celebrate Christmas, which her mother said was Santa Claus's birthday and they would celebrate the beginning of winter which they called the Yule Solstice. Meagan thought that Santa Claus must be a very nice person to give other people presents on his birthday so she and Corwin always left him a piece of cake and some eggnog to drink. Meagan and Corwin picked lots of branches to decorate the house with. They tried to get fallen branches when they could but when they had to take them off a live plant they would ask the plant first and then thank it when they were done. Meagan had some crystals in her pocket to leave for the plants as a thank-you present. Corwin used the scissors when they had to cut something because he was older and Meagan's safety scissors might hurt the plant more. Corwin was always very careful not to cut more than they needed. They put all their branches into baskets that Elizabeth's mother Nana had made. "Don't let Starweaver eat anything!" said Corwin, "Many plants can make cats and people sick." Meagan held her basket up higher. She didn't
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want Star to get sick! Corwin told her that soon she would get to go on walks with their father into the woods to learn about which plants were safe to eat and which were not. "Yes," said Meagan, "and then maybe Cindy's mom will show me how to make medicines!" Cindy was Meagan's best friend and her mother was an herbalist. Cindy's mother Anna made medicine, incense, make-up and lots of other things wit all kinds of plants and flowers. Sometimes Meagan would go with her mother when Elizabeth went to trade herbs with Anna. Then she and Cindy would have fun smelling all the herbs in Anna's workshop. Soon Meagan's house was full of decorations. They made popcorn and cranberry strings to decorate the tree. Each year Meagan and Corwin would make a special ornament to put on the tree. This year Nana helped them make ornaments out of clay. Nana put the ornaments in her kiln, which is a kind of oven, so that they would get hard. Meagan loved her Nana very much. She always brought Meagan a surprise when she cam to visit. One time she had brought a little black kitten who grew up to be Starweaver! One time Meagan asked Nana if she was a Pagan too. Nana said, "Oh, I'm half of one and a dozen of the other". Meagan couldn't talk about it to her other grandparents. Her daddy's parents Gramma Lee and Granpa Scott were very Christian and always asked where the children were going to Sunday school. Meagan had been to Sunday school a few times with Cindy because her parents wanted her to know about all religions. But she didn't tell Gramma Lee and Granpa Scott about the time she went to the Jewish temple or talked to her parents' Buddhist friend. She knew that they wouldn't understand and she didn't want to make them feel bad. It seemed like no time at all before it was the night before Yule Solstice. Meagan's family had found a dead tree in the woods to use for a Yule log. They decorated it with greenery after Michael carved little suns onto it. When it was ready they put it in the fireplace and put the piece of Yule log they had saved from last year on top of it. This year Jeremy, the Coven's High Priest, had to work on the Solstice so the Coven had decided to hold their ritual on the next Saturday. Meagan was excited, they would celebrate three days this year! That night, Meagan's family had a big dinner and Nana came to stay the night. Elizabeth had talked to Cindy's mother Anna and she let Cindy come to spend the night too! Sonn Elizabeth lit the Yule log and many candles around the room. Cindy and Meagan lay on the rug in front of the
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fire while Michael played his harp. They sang some songs that people in their Coven had written about the Yule. Cindy didn't know very many of the songs they sang but she tried to sing them anyway. This made Meagan giggle and so Cindy started to tickle her. They had a great tickle fight until Nana said that they were too close to the fire even if it had a screen. Cindy and Meagan got to stay up past their bedtime and even got to have a cookie before they went to bed. They promised each other to meet after Santa came to play with their new toys. Meagan could hardly wait for Santa to get there! On Christmas Eve she and Corwin left out some coconut cake and eggnog for Santa. They left him a note wishing him a happy birthday and thanking him in advance for anything he might leave for them if he thought that they had been good. Meagan had tried to be good all year but it was very hard for her to go to sleep that night. She kept thinking that she heard raindeer on the roof. The next morning Meagan got up and brushed her teeth. She could hardly wait to go downstairs but she had to wait until her parents and Nana were ready. Because Corwin was old enough he had gone down to the kitchen to heat water for tea and coffee. Meagan's mother and Nana would only drink herb tea but Michael said he had to jumpstart his mornings which always made Elizabeth laugh and tease him. Once they got downstairs Corwin and Meagan rushed to see what Santa had left them while their parent's took pictures. After they were done, the whole family exhanged presents. Then it was time to visit Gramma Lee and Granpa Scott. It wasn't until the next day that Meagan had time to play with Cindy. Since the Coven had chosen to meet on Saturday they decided to have a party all day. People began arriving early in the morning. Some of them had brought gifts for Meagan and her family who also had gifts for them. Meagan had made Jeremy a plate with a pentagram and runes around it spelling out his name with the clay her Nana had brought to make the Christmas decorations with. "Thank you so much Meagan!" said Jeremy, "I will put this on my altar at home and everytime I see it I will think of you." Meagan felt very happy that Jeremy liked her present. Everyone had a good time. They all played games and sang songs. Michael played his harp. Corwin had gotten a new recorder for Christmas and played it for eveyone. Sometimes people would

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stop for a little bit and go for a walk in the woods. Not everyone had woods behind their house like Meagan's family did. It was getting to be time for the Circle to gather. Everyone took turns taking quick showers and baths to purify themselves. Meagan and Corwin helped decorate the Circle with greens and candles before it was their turn. They took their baths and put on their robes. The Coven was starting to gather in the Circle. There was a bonfire ready to light and two unlit candles waiting on the Altar. They would light the bonfire and the candles to help light the Horned Lord's way through the dark months of winter. Robert blew a Horn and the ceremony started. When it came time for Cakes and Ale they passed out some special cookies that Nana had made for them. "I may not come worship with you," Nana said, "but I respect what you do and I would like to share a little part of it with you." All too soon the ritual was over. Meagan was going to help clean up the Circle but her mother saw her yawning and sent her to bed. "Don't worry Meagan," said Elizabeth, "the grown-ups are going to stay up until the bonfire goes out and we'll clean up then. Go brush your teeth and get ready for bed and one of us will come tuck you in in a minute, o.k.?" "O.k. momma," yawned Meagan, "it's all been so much fun this week, I just can't stay awake any longer." When Michael came up to tuck Meagan in she was already sound asleep and dreaming about the wonderful week she had had.

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Easy Quick Devilled Eggs


Hardcook the eggs and peel. Slice in half, putting yellow yolks in bowl. Add the same amount of Hellman's Mayo and soft butter. Mix in a couple tablespoons yellow mustard. Add 1 tsp vinegar. Add black pepper to taste. Mix well. Put mix in small sandwich baggie. Cut small hole in corner and use as a pastry bag and fill eggs. Sprinkle with paprika. Chill one hour and serve.

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How to make a Pentagram Yule (or Holiday) Wreath *These can be made large enough for your door or small enough for you Yule tree topper. You will need; 1 round wreath Grapevine any size. 1 Star wreath to just fit inside the Wreath Hot glue Wire Holiday Ivy, Berries, Decorations according to holiday: Yule, Samhain. Ostara and so on. Set the star inside the wreath and wire to round at each point Add decorations as desired and hot glue in place. Hang and enjoy Simple fun and always magickal to make. A wonderful holiday craft for making with children.

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Yule Home Cleaning Youll need; 1 Red Candle 1 Green Candle 1 Candle Holder Lighter Have both candles with you. At Midnight, Take the Red candle and start at the front of the house. Walk through the house, Room by Room. Then walk out side by your back door. As you do so Say... Be gone all sadness, all evil, all negativity, Be gone from here for all eternity.

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Blow out the candle. Take the Green candle, Light it walk back inside through the back door. Walk through the house again, Room by Room. Reverse from before. Then open your front door. As you do so Say... Welcome love and Welcome light, Come into this home tonight. For now and ever shall it be, This we ask ... So mote it be. Place Green Candle in Candle holder and let it burn until out. Yule Calling of the Lord and Lady Many of us like to have a special blessing on Yule at dinner or for Ritual. This calling is written to be used as you like to give honor unto the Goddess and God during this time of year. Perfect for your candle ritual or blessings in respect of Yule. Calling Lady: you who are the beauty of the snowy earth and the silver moon among the stars, known by many names. We invite to you to come among us and attend this rite, for you are the soul of nature that gives life to the universe. Lord: You who are the freedom of the wild things the golden sun that lights the day, known by many names. We invite you to come among us and attend this rite, for you are the body of nature who gives life to the universe. Release
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We who are gathered here, give thanks unto the Goddess and God. We give them thanks for watching over us this day. With blessings and love in our hearts to stay. Blessed Be.

Easy Fiesta Christmas Tree Recipe


Ingredients: 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese Yellow or green bell pepper 1 piece (2 inches) green onion 1/4 cup jalapeno pepper jelly or preserves Assorted tortilla chips, crackers or sliced vegetables, if desired

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Directions: 1. Cut block of cream cheese diagonally in half; arrange on serving plate with shallow rim to form triangle. 2. Cut star out of bell pepper with star-shaped cookie cutter; place at top of tree. Place green onion piece at base of tree. 3. Mix jalapeno preserves until it thins out a bit; spoon over cream cheese.. Serve with crackers and chips..

Crab Salad Main Dish 1 lb spaghetti noodles cooked 1 small bottle Hidden Valley Ranch 16 oz package imitation crab meat 1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese 1 can sliced black olives 1 Cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese. Cook spaghetti noodles, drain. add rest of ingredients. Chill or serve warm. Serves a crowd.

MEAGAN AND THE PUPPIES by Kathryn Dyer Once upon a time there was a little girl named Meagan. She lived with her mommy and daddy, her big brother Corwin and her beautiful cat named Starweaver. Meagan and her friend Cindy were visiting one of Meagan's

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friends from Circle named Kern. Kern had a dog named Lady. Lady was going to have puppies. Meagan and Cindy were excited because their parents had told them they each could have one of the puppies. One day Meagan got a phone call from Kern. The puppies were being born! Meagan called Cindy to let her know. They asked their parents if they could go see the puppies being born. But it was too late at night and they had to stay home. Meagan asked her mother Elizabeth how long it would be before they could bring the puppy she choose home. "Well honey," said Elizabeth, "Puppies and kittens both need to nurse from their mothers for about six to eight weeks before they do well on just solid food." Meagan looked surprised, "Is that the same as two or three in animal years?". "Yes," said Elizabeth, "All animals do better with the nutrients from their mother's milk to start their lives out right." "Oh," said Meagan, "But what if the mommy doesn't have any milk?" Elizabeth shifted the baby sleeping in her arms, "Well, in that case the people taking care of the animals would give them bottles just like humans do...in the wild the litter would just go on to the Summerland." "That would be sad," said Meagan. "What would be sad?" asked her brother Corwin, coming into the room. "If a baby animal's mommy didn't have any milk and they didn't have any humans to take care of them and they went to the Summerland," responded Meagan in a rush. "But they would come back to Earth again sometime wouldn't they?" he asked. "Oh!" exclaimed Meagan, "I hadn't thought of that." Elizabeth nodded, "And sometimes animals die and go to the Summerland for other reasons. Remember when Cindy's dog Bud-Boy had cancer? The vet tried to make him well but eventually there wasn't anything anyone could do and he went on to the Summerland." "I hope nothing like that happens to my puppy!" exclaimed Meagan. "So do I," said her mother, "It's not very likely, Lady has already raised several litters of healthy puppies, but sometimes puppies are born that aren't really ready to be in this world." When the puppies were two days old, Meagan and her mother and Cindy and her mother went to the farm where Kern and his family lived. It was a long drive and Meagan and Cindy were very excited. When they got there, Kern came out to the car crying. Meagan and Cindy jumped out. "What's wrong?" asked Meagan, patting him on the shoulder. Kern sniffed, "I didn't catch you before you left. We found Lady's puppies dead this morning!" Meagan and Cindy were shocked. They both stared at Kern for

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a minute before giving him a big hug. Elizabeth had gotten out of the car and turned to Kern's father Liam who had just come out of the barn. "What happened?" she asked. Liam shook his head, "We're not sure. The puppies looked fine last night but it looks like she just abandoned them so there must have been something wrong that we couldn't see." Meagan looked up at him, "You mean that Lady can tell if something is wrong when we can't?" Liam nodded, "Yes, animals have instincts that help them know when a litter will be able to survive. Since Lady has already had several litters we know it wasn't just because she didn't know how to take care of them. Some animals have to be taught how to take care of their babies, especially if they were orphaned early." Cindy's mother Anna looked pale, "What should we do now?" she asked Elizabeth. Elizabeth looked at Liam, "Well, the girls had their hearts set on having one of those puppies...I think we should give them a chance to say good-bye." Kern cried louder now, "We can't! Mommy threw them away!" Now Liam looked shocked, "What? Honey, Mommy didn't throw them away. Their bodies are in a stall in the barn until we can give them back to the Earth properly." Kern stopped crying for a minute, "They are? I looked in the basket after Mommy told me they were dead and they were gone!" he sniffed a little more, "Can we have a Passing Over ritual?" Liam nodded, "Of course you can." Anna turned to Elizabeth, "What does that involve?" "Well," said Elizabeth, "In this case we would put up a small circle around the area where the puppies will be buried and ask the God and Goddess to watch over them in the Summerland until they are ready to come back to Earth." "They'll be covered won't they?" Anna asked. Elizabeth shook her head, "That would be like a closed casket funeral Anna. It's usually easier for everyone if they get to see that there's not a spirit left in the bodies we give back to the Earth." "Oh," said Anna, "I don't think I can deal with that...Cindy?" "Yes Momma?" said Cindy. "Do you want to take part in this Passing Over ritual? You don't have to, but if you think it would make you feel better," said Anna, "I don't want to see the puppies but you were expecting to have one of them." "I want to say goodbye to them, even if I didn't ever get to see them alive," said Cindy, "But now I'm never going to get a puppy!" Liam smiled at her, "There's always tomorrow. Lady is very likely to have another litter in a few months."

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Anna decided to stay at the house while everyone else went down to the barn to get the puppies. They carried them in an old blanket to a small grove of trees. Lady came along for a little bit and barked before running off. "I guess Lady just said goodbye too," said Meagan. Kern and Cindy nodded. Liam and Elizabeth dug a hole to bury the puppies in. "Why don't you all go look for some rocks to build a cairn?" suggested Liam. "What's a cairn?" asked Cindy. "Oh!" said Kern, "that's when you put a bunch of rocks over where you buried someone so that it marks the spot and keeps out the wild animals while the body turns into earth." Cindy picked up a little pebble, "I don't see how this would keep out wild animals!" Kern and Meagan laughed, "You've never seen a cairn before, Cindy. We use the biggest rocks we can carry over there." The children collected a lot of rocks while the burial spot was being dug while Liam's mother Elsa helped get some of the bigger rocks that were around. After they had gotten plenty of rocks for the cairn, everyone got a chance to touch the puppies and tell them goodbye. Cindy wasn't sure if she wanted to touch them but Elizabeth told her she didn't have to. Cindy put one finger on a black and white puppy, "It's so soft!" she exclaimed, "It's hard to believe that it's not alive." Liam nodded, "Yes, some people tell their children that dead things are just sleeping but that's not true. When you die your spirit goes out of your body. But we believe that our spirits will go live with the Gods in the Summerland for a bit and then come back in brand-new bodies." Cindy nodded, "We think that our souls go to heaven. That's kinda the same thing isn't it?" The grown-ups nodded. Then everyone held hands while Elizabeth put up a Circle. They asked the Gods to come be with them and help everyone deal with feeling so sad. Elsa told the children, "It's only natural to feel sad when someone dies, even if you didn't know them very well. But we will see them again someday, if not on the Earth than we will meet them in the Summerland...or heaven" she added as she smiled at Cindy. They buried the puppies to give their empty bodies back to the Earth. The children helped build the cairn which would mark the spot. Everyone went back to the house for lunch but no one was very hungry. Over the next few weeks Meagan, Cindy and Kern talked a lot about the puppies and how they missed them. But each day they found that they felt better and less sad about it. Their parents all told them to talk about the puppies as much as they wanted but that if someone didn't want to talk about it to come to them instead. "Some people are scared of death," said Elizabeth, "And it's not polite to make them feel uncomfortable by talking about it with them."

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Meagan hoped that someday she would have another chance to have a puppy. One day she went to bed and realized that she didn't feel sad about the puppies dying anymore. "I hope one of those puppies comes back to be my friend," she told her father as he tucked her into bed. Starweaver jumped up onto her pillow. "You never know!" replied her father, kissing her. Meagan snuggled into the covers and fell asleep dreaming of fields of puppies all playing with her. It had been a good day.

The Winter Solstice is unique among days of the year the time of the longest night and the shortest day. The dark triumphs but only briefly. For the Solstice is also a turning point. From now on (until the Summer Solstice, at any rate), the nights grow shorter and the days grow longer, the dark wanes and the Sun waxes in power. From the dark womb of the night, the light is born. Many of the customs associated with the Winter Solstice (and therefore with other midwinter festivals such as St Lucys Day, Saturnalia, Hanukkah, New Years and Twelfth Night) derive from stories of a mighty battle between the dark and the light, which is won, naturally, by the light. Other traditions record this as the time a savior (the Sun-Child) is born to a virgin mother. The Battle Between Old and New, Dark and Light The Romans celebrated from December 17th to December 24th with a festival called Saturnalia, during which all work was put aside in favor of feasting and gambling. The social order was reversed, with masters waiting on their slaves. The Saturnalia

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is named after Saturn, who is often depicted with a sickle like the figures of Death or Old Father Time. Astrologically speaking, Saturn is saturnine: gloomy, old, dutiful and heavy. He was the god who ate his own children rather than let them surpass him. For new life to flourish, for the sun to rise again, it is necessary to vanquish this gloomy old fellow. Therefore, the feasting and merriment of the midwinter season are religiously mandated in order to combat the forces of gloom. The day following the Saturnalia, was the Juvenalia, according to Z Budapest in The Grandmother of Time, a holiday in honor of children who were entertained, feasted and given good luck talismans. This makes sense. After vanquishing the Old King, its time to celebrate the new in the form of children, the New Year's Baby, the Son of Man. Naturally this is the time of the year at which the birth of Christ is celebrated, since he is also the New King, the Light of the World who brings light. The Birth of the Sun Christs birthday was not celebrated on December 25th until the 4th century. Before then, December 25th was best known as the birthday of the Persian hero and sun-god, Mithra. The myth tells that he sprang up full-grown from a rock, armed with a knife and carrying a torch. Shepherds watched his miraculous appearance and hurried to greet him with the first fruits of their flocks and their harvests. The cult of Mithra spread all over the Roman empire. In 274 AD, the Roman emperor Valerian declared December 25th the Birthday of Sol Invictus, the Unconquerable Sun. Christ was also not the first miraculous child born to a virgin mother. As Marina Warner points out, the virgin birth of heroes and sages was a widespread formula in the Hellenistic world: Pythagorus, Plato, Alexander were all believed to be born of woman by the power of a holy spirit. The union of a virgin and a supernatural force, like the couplings between Zeus and various nymphs, was shorthand indicating the presence of a miraculous child, a child with the powers of both worlds. Dionysus is such a child, born of a union between Zeus and Semele.

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Parke in Festivals of the Athenians describes a women-only midwinter festival, the Lenaia, which honored Dionysos. On this night, Greek women held their ecstatic dances in winter fully clothed in Greek dress, with castanets or the thyrsus, dancing together with no male companions, human or satyr. Graves calls it the Lenaea, the Festival of Wild Women (a nice companion for the Festival of Merry Women on Dec 14). He says a bull, representing Dionysus, was cut into nine pieces, with one piece being burned and the rest consumed raw by the worshippers. Dionysus was born in winter, crowned with serpents, became a lion in the spring and was sacrificed as a bull (stag or goat) in the summer because these were calendar emblems of the old tripartite year. Marija Gimbutas in Goddesses and Gods of Old Europe calls Dionysus a Year God. Mithra was also associated with the bull (his initates were baptized with the blood of a sacrificed bull) and shown with the emblems of the zodiac surrounding him, suggesting that he is also a Year God. The Lenaia occurred on the twelfth day of the Greek lunar month, Gamelion, which falls in early winter. The twelfth day of a lunar month (which begins with the new moon) always falls on a full moon night. If we move this lunar festival to the solar calendar and count from the winter solstice, the festival would occur on January 5th or 6th. Until the fourth century, Christs birthday was celebrated on January 6th, on the same date when the Virgin Kore gave birth to the year god celebrated in Alexandria with a festival called the Koreion. St. Epiphanius complains about the hideous mockery of this rite but it preceded the story of Christs birth. In the original ritual, the image of the goddess, decorated with gold stars, was carried seven times around her temple as the priests cried, The Virgin has brought forth the new Aeon! Although Aeon, or Eon, is now defined as an indefinitely long period of time; an age, eternity, its Indo-European root aiw conveyed vital force, life, long life, eternity, and the Greek form Aionmeant specifically vital force. [Farias] This description recalls the Egyptian ceremony re-enacting the birth of Horus, the sun-god to Isis. All lights in the city were doused while Isis circled the sarcophagus seven times, then brought forth Horus who was called the Light of the World.

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Statues of Isis holding the newly born sun god on her lap, presenting him to the world, are similar to pose to later statues representing Mary and Jesus. Festival of Lights The return of the light is the most prominent feature of most midwinter festivals. In Sweden on St. Lucys Day, young girls don white dresses and a wreath of candles and awaken their families with cakes and song. Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, is celebrated by lighting candles over a span of eight days. The Christian custom of the Advent wreath, with its four candles, one lit each of the Sundays before Christmas, is another way of re-kindling the light. The Christmas candle, a large candle of red or some other bright color decorated with holly or other evergreens, was at one time a popular custom throughout Great Britain, Ireland and Scandinavia. One person, usually the eldest or the head of the household, is designated as the lightbringer. She lights the candle for the first time on Christmas Eve before the festive supper and during each of the remaining evenings of the Twelve Days of Christmas. To extinguish the candle, she snuffs it with tongs rather than blowing it out, since that would blow the luck away. The candle sheds a blessing on the household and so is protected from accidental quenching. It seems likely that the candle also represented the coming year, just as the weather of each of the twelve days of Christmas foretell the weather of the corresponding month. It had protective or fertilizing powers and was kept as a charm. In Denmark, during a lightning storm, the remnant would be brought out and lit to protect the household. Similar customs once surrounded the Yule log. The Yule log must never be bought but should be received as a gift, found or taken from you own property. Often the log to be burned at midwinter was chosen early in the year and set aside. Tradition varies about the type of wood to be used. Oak logs were popular in the north of England, birch in Scotland and ash in Cornwall and Devon. Ash is the only wood that burns freely when green and the world-tree, Yggdrasil, in the Nordic tradition was an ash-tree. It is important that the Yule log be

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the biggest and greenest log available since the Christmas festivities will last only as long as the Yule log burns. In some parts of the Scottish highlands, the head of the household finds a withered stump and carves it into the likeness of an old woman, theCailleach Nollaich or Christmas Old Wife, a sinister being representing the evils of winter and death. She's the goddess of winter, the hag of night, the old one who brings death. Burning her drives away the winter and protects the occupants of the household from death. The Yule log is first brought into the house with great ceremony on Christmas Eve (or the eve of solstice, if one prefers). Usually it is decorated with holly and ivy and other evergreens of the season. Some people prefer to use the Yule log as a decoration and place candles on it instead, thus transforming it into a candleabra like the menorah or the kinara. It is lit with a piece of last year's log as described in Herricks poem, Hesperides: Come bring with a noise My merry, merry boys The Christmas log to the firing With the last year's brand. Light the new block, And for good success in his spending On your psalteries play: That sweet luck may Come while the log is a-teendling. In Italy, the Yule log is called the Ceppo. Boccaccio in the fourteenth century described a Florentine family gathering about the hearth and pouring a libation of wine upon the glowing wood, then sharing the remaining wine, thus linking the Yule log with the custom of wassailing, pouring out libations to the trees in the orchard. The Solstice Evergreen

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Another ancient midwinter custom is decorating with greens. The Romans decorated with rosemary, bay, laurel, holly, ivy and mistletoe. The holly and ivy were both important midwinter plants in Great Britain and Ireland, as seen in the mysterious medieval carol which mentions the rivalry between them. Matthews in The Winter Solstice provides the lyrics of a 15th century carol which refers to an ancient battle between the two, with the Ivy representing the cold gloominess of winter and the Holly King, the jolly spirit of the season. The Christmas tree is of more recent origin. In her book, The Solstice Evergreen, Sheryl Ann Karas says that the earliest record of an evergreen being decorated comes from Riga in Latvia in 1519, when a group of local merchants carried an evergreen bedecked with flowers to the marketplace, where they danced around it and then burned it. Another possible source is the custom in 15th and 16th century Germany of hanging apples on a fir tree as a prop for the miracle play performed on Christmas eve depicting Adam and Eve being driven out of Paradise (see Dec 24). Celebrating Yule You should enjoy yourself as much as possible on the Winter Solstice because this will bring back light (and lightness) into the world. Different traditions mention feasting, gambling, playing pranks, giving gifts, visiting, drinking, dressing up, fornicating, putting on plays and staying up all night. During the dark of winter, invoke all the forces of pleasure and love which make life worth living. Decorating for this festival is easy since you can use all your Christmas decorations. Evergreens and wreaths represent rebirth and the circle of life. Fill your home with candles and Christmas lights. Place them on mirrors, hang up lots of sparkly ornaments and prisms and tinsel so you can create as much light as possible. Sitting in the Dark Earlier traditions focused on the battle between the dark and the light, but we know both are valuable. Honor the dark before calling in the light. This is the season when animals hibernate and nature sleeps and we can turn inward too. Perhaps some of

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the depression people feel during the holidays comes from not providing a space for feeling the sadness associated with this season. Set aside time (hard to do amidst the frenzy of the holidays) for sitting in the dark and quiet. I like to spend the entire day of the Winter Solstice in silence and reflection. This is a natural time for letting go and saying farewell. Release your resentments and regrets into the darkness, knowing they will be transformed. Write about them in your journal or write them on slips of paper which you can burn in your Yule fire. Use your holiday cards to make amends to people you've hurt or neglected. Welcoming the Light When you light your candles and your fire, do so with the intention of bringing light into the world. What are the ways in which you can help make the world lighter? How do you bring light into the lives of those around you? Make a conscious effort to increase the amount of light you create. Nancy Brady Cunningham describes a simple yet elegant Winter Solstice ritual in Feeding the Spirit which is appropriate for a large group or a couple, for children and adults, and for people of all religious persuasions. It goes something like this: Decorate a room with winter greenery. Place a large bowl of water and a candle in the center of the room. Have some gold glitter and scented oil nearby. Give each of the participants a candle (with some kind of holder if youre worried about drips). Everyone sits in a circle with a lit candle in front of them and talks about their losses, putting out their candle when they're done speaking. When all are done, the central candle is extinguished and everyone sits in the darkness reflecting on what they have lost. After a long silence, the leader relights the central candle which represents the sun and sprinkles the gold glitter on the water. Everyone lights their candles from the central candle and places them by the water so they can watch the glitter sparkling there. This is a good time to sing a sun song, like Here Comes the Sun, or You Are My Sunshine. Pass around a glass of wine or juice and toast the sun. The sunchild is the child of promise. Everyone can talk about a promise they see in the future. The leader puts the scented oil in the water and anoints each person with sunshine by dipping her

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hand into the sparkling, scented water and sprinkling it over each persons hair. I do a similar ritual at my Winter Solstice party. When the guests arrive the house is bright with Christmas lights and candles, but at some point during the evening I turn off the lights and blow out the candles and ask the guests to spend a few moments in the darkness and silence reflecting on these qualities of the winter. Then I tell the story of St Lucy and play the traditional Lucy song. As the song is playing, from out of the darkness, faint at first and growing stronger, comes the wavering light of a candle, carried by St Lucy (a role which is coveted by the younger members of the party). She is dressed in white with a crown of candles on her head and her face as she advances through the darkness, ever so intent on the candle she carries before her, is radiant. There is usually a gasp from the assembled guests, so numinous is this figure. St Lucy lights the central candle in the Advent wreath, then I invite the guests to bring their own candles to the flame to light them and make a wish for the New Year. St Lucy disappears into the darkness to reappear again as Shaw or Leah or Amy, and the house is soon full of lights and noise as we talk and listen to carols and feast on the thirteen kinds of Christmas cookies I prepare for this occasion.

December, In all it's Names Names of the Month in Various Cultures Wintermaand, the winter month (Holland), Rhagfyr, "before the shortest day" (Welsh), an Dudlachd, the darkness (Scots Gaelic), Mi na Nollag, the month of Christmas (Irish Gaelic), Giuli, the month of Yule (Anglo-Saxon) From Blackburn, Bonnie & Leofranc Holford-Strevens, Oxford Companion to the Year, Oxford University Press 1999 Kightly, Charles, The Perpetual Almanack of Folklore, Thames & Hudson 1987 Names of the Month to the Northern Tribes Aleuts: sea-lion month Koryak (north of Kamchatka): cold winds month or snowstorm

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month Ugric Ostiaks: Month in which men go on horseback (the month before as walking month because men could still walk on the snow) Yeneseik Ostiaks: Month when the earth greezes Tatars: Mottled month (bare patches appear among the snow) Karagasses: Month of the long rest (taken during the short days) Buriats: When aftermath comes, Nesting month Ostiak Samoyeds: Midwinter month Yurak Samoyeds: Calm month (no storms) Yakuts: Month in which the ice floats away Eskimos: Time of the drum (the winter festival begins) Lower Yukon delta: Time of musk rats Tlinkit, Wrangell, AK: Ground hog mother's moon From Blackburn, Bonnie & Leofranc Holford-Strevens, Oxford Companion to the Year, Oxford University Press 1999 Nilsson, Martin P, Primitive Time-Reckoning, Oxford University Press 1920 Popular Months of the European Peoples Macedonia: St Nicholas (from his feast on the 6th) Basque: binding up (of vegetation?) Lithuania: wolf month or Christmas Czechoslovakia: wolf month Croatia: month of clods Sebia: increasing daylight Ruthenia: month of the snowstorm Bulgaria: kindling of the wheel Germany: fourth autumn month, winter month, hard month, slaughtering month, month of bacon, wolf month, hare month, second winter Anglo-Saxon: yule, midwinter Iceland: yule month or ram month or the fat-sucker, month of the short days Norway: Yule or time of the short days Denmark: Yule Lapland: Advent month, Yule month Lapland: month when the male reindeer are powerless (the month before is rutting month), Advent month

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HOLIDAY APPETISER Rye Boat 1 1/3 Cup Sour Cream 1 1/3 Cup Helman's Mayonnaise 1 Tbsp Beamond Seasoning 1 tsp Dill Weed 1 Tablespoon Onion Flakes 1 Tbsp Parsley Flakes 1 Tbsp Caraway Seed Blend all. Let sit overnight. Hollow out round rye bread, keep inner for dipping, put dip in center.

Winter Solstice: A Witch's Yule Story It seems that this year the Yuletide season hit the stores even faster than last year. We seem to ex pect that rush from commerce, to make a buck. While we are out buying our Thanksgiving turkey, we expect to hear, Im dreaming of a white Christmas. But this year I noticed, while I was picking up candy for the trick-or-treaters, that Bing Crosby was already playing over the stores intercom systems. Then, driving home that evening, I noticed one of the homes in my neighborhood already had up holiday lights, to include a fully decorated tree in the window. I just dont think the ancients had any idea that the day we honor the returning of the sun was going to be turned into such a money-making occasion. I am personally proud of the fact that our Pagan traditions and celebrations are in no way

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responsible for this one. Now dont get me wrong. I love the holiday of Yule and the celebration of the Winter Solstice. I decorate, put up a tree, and prepare a delicious Yule feast. We exchange gifts and even sing Yuletide songs. And while it may seem odd to most, I am normally undecorated and have everything packed away by the 25th. But, I didnt always have the freedom to celebrate as I desired. I celebrated the Winter Solstice and Yule within the disguised decorations of Christmas. Perhaps all this misplaced jubilation is one of the reasons for the holiday blues so many have during this time of year. The confusion I dealt with surrounding the Winter holidays was my own. I knew the truth, but I learned as a child that speaking of it was not acceptable. You could talk about Christmas, Santa, gifts, and eating, but not the truth. Even today, our Pagan children are not allowed the freedoms of their holiday beliefs. Yet, once I allowed myself the freedom to rejoice within the Solstice Rites and Yule, I found the inspiration to enjoy it all, even when I am sitting with family members, who have no idea what I believe, on the 25th of December. Winter Solstice and Yule, which I learned meant, Feast of the Wheel, was a celebration of the ancients. Solstice celebrations were not concepts practiced only by the ancient Europeans; these traditions and customs of honoring and welcoming the sun can be found throughout history, being celebrated by people on every continent. I learned that in this rite of Winter, we welcomed not only the coming of a new year, but the excitement and preparation of the rebirth of life. It was a time of readying and a time to reflect; a time to help others and honor those who had passed into the veil. One of my favorite parts of this holiday is the tradition of the Yule Log. This Yule Log is a Witchs Yule Log and is, perhaps, done a bit differently than others of which you have heard. A Witchs Yule Log is used to call the spirits of your loved ones that have passed. I can see my Great Grandmothers house as clearly as if I was there today. It was made of wood; grayed by time and age. 58

There were great stones which made the fireplace wall and flat ones stacked at the corners of the house that held it up from the ground. In the Winter, the back porch was filled with wood waiting for the fire. The windows give a warming, luminous glow from the candles placed in them for the holiday. And in my eyes, as a child, that was what love and peace must surely have looked like. In December, it was fiercely cold, even in the house. You had to wait until the fires were rekindled and had time to warm each room. I didnt always look forward to getting out of my cozy soft bed. It was warm and I liked being in a little nest of my own. I would sink deep into the down mattress, bundled tightly in my Great Grandmothers handmade quilts; each quilt made from tiny pieces of the past, filled with stories of people and lives long passed from this world. But, I only needed to be called once, quickly grabbing my clothes and running into the kitchen where it was warm. I would stand behind the stove where the pipe came out of the wall and there I would dress, being cautious not to touch any part of the red hot stove. I remember how I looked over and, on the kitchen table, saw a small box wrapped in green and red cloth and tied with brown cord. I was so excited and wanted to find out what might be in the box. My Great Grandmother sat down at the table with her cup of coffee and told me that I could open it. I shook it; it felt light. Then, as if I was performing some great act of discovery, I opened the box to find a big chuck of shiny, gray charcoal. I looked at my Great Grandmother with a curious eye, wondering what secrets this small black stone might possible hold. Smiling back at me, she said, This is a key, a key to a doorway of those we love, but no longer see. That evening at sunset, Yule Eve, my Great Grandmother asked me to help her bring in the big log we had picked for the Yule fire. She stirred the coals in the fireplace, then put the small piece of charcoal from the green and red box onto the coals. Soon, the small piece of coal began to glimmer again with new life. Then we carefully placed the new Yule Log into the fireplace. The shadows within the room danced from the light of the fire as it grew within the hearth. I lay on the floor looking into the fire, my chin in my hands, as my Great Grandmother begin to explain about this key of Yule. As she told me the stories of family that had passed, and of those she loved, I could sense the room fill with the spirits of those of 59

whom she spoke. I began to see them as she did and to share in the memories of those all about me. The Yule Log is burned to open the doorway between the veils. The small piece of charcoal is the key to the thinning of the veils. It allows the years past, and today, to join, that the spirits of our loved ones who have crossed over may join us during this holiday season. As long as the Yule Log burns, the spirits of those you love may cross, but only until it burns out. While the Yule Log burns, you may talk, see, and visit with all those you love that have passed on to other planes. It is a time to share the stories of family and those you loved. It is a time to share traditions and honor those who have given us our history. This is not a scary thing, but something we look forward to each year, in love and joy. Before the Yule Log burns to its end, you must take a piece and save it for the next year. (Of course, you must make sure it is completely out, a cold coal. I know this is silly to say, but if I dont, someone will get burned.) Save the bit of charcoal until the next year, preferably in a red or green cloth. The burning of the Yule Log and sharing the past is also a part of the magick used to assure the turning of the Wheel of Life or bringing on of the seasons. We are joined with our past as we look forward to our future. Maybe this is where the saying, "May the Spirit of the Season be with you always, truly comes from. May your holiday be filled with the magick that really makes up the season. Have a shining Solstice, happy Yule, and blessed New Year.

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~~***How to Make A Candy Cane Sugar Body Scrub***~~ INGREDIENTS: 2 mixing bowls 2 cups white sugar 1 cup extra virgin olive oil 2 tsp. pure honey 8 to 10 drops peppermint oil Red food coloring Clear glass or plastic container with secure lid DIRECTIONS: 1 Put 1 cup of white sugar in each small mixing bowl. 2 Add 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil and 1 tsp. of pure honey to each bowl and stir until the ingredients are blended. 3 Stir in the peppermint oil and blend the mixture several times, until the oil is completely incorporated with the other ingredients. 4 Add a few drops of red food coloring to one of the bowls, stirring well. Start with 1 or 2 drops of food coloring, and add more until the sugar scrub is the desired color. 5 Place a layer of pink candy cane sugar scrub in the clear container, and follow with a layer of white sugar scrub. Continue layering pink and white sugar scrub until the mixture has all been placed in the jar. 6 Dab a bit of candy cane sugar scrub on a damp washcloth and rub the scrub in your body in a circular motion. When you are finished scrubbing, rinse the scrub under a warm shower.

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Pat your body dry, and then apply a moisturizer to the scrubbed skin.

How To Write A Spell


Words have power. All words, whether written or spoken, are alive with the energy we give them. This magical concept was well understood by ancient magicians. The first primitive alphabets probably originated about 3100 BC in southern Mesopotamia and were developed by the Sumerians. Early alphabets were a combination of words and symbols. These were used primarily to record business and monetary transactions; however, some writings that survived on clay tablets indicate some of these inscriptions were spells and prayers. These were among the earliest written charms. Most experts agree the ancient Egyptians produced one of the most extensive collections of written spells in human history. In time, possessing any written charms or magical wisdom was dangerous and could lead to charges of black magic, and so the practice of writing down of magical lore declined. Magical knowledge was passed on orally. Only very old Books of Shadows or magical grimoires survived. Today, a spell or affirmation that you write yourself is powerful, because it allows you to focus on your wish and create a resonant energy. The first step in writing a spell is the same as with a spoken spell: You must have a goal. Once one is clear in your mind you'll be ready to put it on paper. Notice, I did say on paper. A spell that is handwritten is much more powerful than one which is typed. When you write your affirmations by hand your powers of concentration are stronger and energy will flow from your heart and into your power hand. This energy then streams from your pen and finally takes visual form on the paper. As your spell begins to take physical form on paper, it also starts to manifest itself in the unseen realm of spirit. And at this moment true magic begins. When you write a spell you are in effect writing a letter to the divine spirit. Keeping this in mind, the materials you use should be of good quality. I suggest the paper have a high cotton content and be pure white. Use a pen you are comfortable with and that contains blue or black ink. The pen and paper you use should be treated as magical tools--do not use them for anything else, and let no one else touch them. Some magical traditions use red ink, because red is the color of the life force. The choice is yours. If you are artistic, a design relating to your goal is a nice addition. I like to include a simple drawing at the top of the page, depicting the Moon phase I am working with. Begin your spell-writing when you are sure you won't be disturbed. Your affirmation need not be lengthy. A paragraph or a few well-chosen sentences will do. Here is one example of a written spell (for protection during travel).

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I, (your name here), will that my trip be safe and secure in all ways. I will travel to (your destination) safely and return home safely. I am protected from all danger. All forms of transportation will be safe and secure. I thank the divine power (or your personal deity)for his/her aid. I write this spell for the good of all and according to the free will of all. So mote it be. Once you are finished writing, fold the paper as a letter. Place it in a special drawer or box. You may sprinkle herbs in the drawer that would be appropriate for your desired goal. Tell no one about your spell. A written spell may be kept forever. It may be carried with you, or destroyed in a respectful manner at the designated time, after the spell has worked. If you work with runes, or some other magical alphabet that you thoroughly understand, you may use it to tap into extra magical power. Writing in a secret alphabet will serve to trigger your psychic powers. But never write a charm in a language you don't know well. How To Combine the Written Word with the Elements The masters of written spellcrafting, such as the ancient Egyptians and the whirling dervishes, took the art of spell writing one step further. If needed, the written charm would be combined with one or more of the elements--earth, air, fire, or water. This would complete the spell: For example, if a spell was written to combat an illness the paper with the written spell would be soaked in water, the ink would wash off, and the ill individual would then drink the inky water. Here is another example. Let's say you wished to rid yourself of a bad habit. You could write your spell during a waning Moon, then soak the paper in salt water and end the ritual by burying the paper and pouring the salt water onto the ground. In this way, you've combined the written charm with the elements of water and earth, where the negativity will be absorbed and purified. An alternative method would be to burn the spell and disperse the ashes to the wind. Here you'd be combining the written work with fire and air to achieve your goal. Other Factors To Consider The practice of writing spells may be used by different religious systems. For instance, Pagans may direct a written spell to a specific god or goddess. Christians may petition a saint to aid them. As is the case in much magical work, timing is crucial. You should try to time your spellwriting with Moon phases and other astrological or seasonal influences. Days of the week can also enhance the power of the written word. Here is a list of the days of the week with planetary and magical associations. Sunday (the Sun): Health and vitality, general well-being.

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Monday (the Moon): Home, family matters, children, women's issues, and magic in general. Tuesday (Mars): Strength and protection. Wednesday (Mercury): Communication and travel. A good day to write a spell when you can't decide which other day would be best. Thursday (Jupiter): Money, wealth, expanding a career or business. Friday (Venus): Love and friendship; also, home decorating or remodeling. Saturday (Saturn): Dealing with fears or serious thinking; helping the needy. If you have your spell planned well in advance, the time of day you write can also add benefits. Magically speaking, the day, like the year, is divided into four parts--morning, noon, sunset, and midnight--each with magical attributes. Morning: Spells written at this time could include anything dealing with new beginnings-a new job, purchasing a new home, or a new romance. Noon: This is the solar hour, which deals with health and energy, and spells intended to increase anything; also it is good for expanding a business or adding passion to romance. Sunset: Twilight spells could deal with spirituality, emotions, or contacting the spiritual realm. Write a spell now to end something, such as a bad habit. Midnight: The traditional "Witching hour" is a good time to write spells concerned with secrets or occult wisdom. If you aren't sure when to write a spell, midnight is always good. Spell writing is nearly a lost magical art. If you combine your own ideas with some of those above, you can use the written word to perform powerful magic. Let your imagination go, and customize your spells to suit your individual needs.

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Yule. In ancient Scandinavia, this festival lasted 12 days (and nights). The first night of Yule (the night before the Solstice) was called the "mother's night". That night the Nordic Pagans used to sit and wait for the birth of the Sun God, Balder, born of the goddess Frigg and fathered by Odin. With the winter solstice, the goddess turned wheel of the year to give you a new point of departure. Yule, not only literally means "wheel", but it also referred to a cycle, the circular movement inherent and eternal return of things. In pagan mythology, the goddess is pregnant and the night of the Yule is going to give birth. That night brings the rebirth of the Sun God, who is going to grow and gain strength in the coming months. Yule, represents the Renaissance, the beginning of a new life.

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Tiramisu Truffles yields 40-50 1-inch truffles 10 ounces white couverture chocolate, finely chopped 1/2 cup mascarpone cheese* 2 1/2 teaspoons Marsala wine 1/2-1 teaspoon instant espresso powder (recommend: Medaglia D'Oro), to taste, divided 1 ounce milk chocolate in block form 1/2 teaspoon dutch-processed cocoa 50 small fluted paper cups, optional
*If your mascarpone cheese is very stiff and thick, whisk it in a small bowl until it is smooth and creamy before adding it to the chocolate.

Melt the white chocolate in a double boiler, stirring until smooth. Set the chocolate aside and allow to cool until just lukewarm. While waiting, dissolve half of the espresso powder in the Marsala wine. When the chocolate has cooled a bit, whisk in the mascarpone until smooth then add the espresso Marsala. Mix in the remaining powdered espresso, cover the bowl and place in the refrigerator overnight. The next day: Grate the block of milk chocolate on the largest holes of a box grater. Toss the chocolate shavings with the dutch processed cocoa. Now grab that beautiful espresso speckled tiramisu ganache...

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Scoop balls of the ganache with a spoon--a round measuring spoon works great-and roll quickly between your palms. If your hands get sticky quickly, dust your clean palms with a little powdered sugar between rolling. To finish, roll the truffles in the shaved chocolate/cocoa mixture.

These truffles are made from fresh perishable ingredients and are best enjoyed soon after making them. If you wish to keep them for more than a day, place a single layer of the truffles into an air tight container and refrigerate for up to 10 days. It is important that you allow the chocolates to come to room temperature before servings, as cold truffles will not have the ideal texture, flavor or mouth feel. Enjoy!

Christmas a pagan holiday? Yule be surprised


Fox News talk-show personality Bill OReilly thinks the Holidays just wont be the same without The Tree, Santa, the gifts of appreciation, the mistletoe and holly, etc. These are the things he claims are threatened with extinction by the so-called War on Christmas.

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But I guess he doesnt realize that these traditions hes apparently missing from his Irish Catholic childhood are thoroughly pagan in origin, some dating back 4,000 years. Which begs the question: So, Bill, what in the name of Jesus are Yule celebrating? My fellow loud-mouthed Irishman famously asks, Do they know its Christmas time (at all)? But Im starting to wonder if OReillydoes? Like many Irish-Americans, I think he has a mistyeyed view of the Ould Country. So be careful what you wish for, Bill. I remember when I was an angelic little altar boy back home, me Mammy threatened me by saying, If you dont get up that road to Mass youll grow up to be a proper bloody Pagan! At the time I and perhaps, she had no real idea what that meant, but it sounded really bad and certainly put the fear of God into both of us . . . until 20 years or so later, when she proudly attended my Pagan Wedding as guest of honor (May her God Bless her)! As a young fella I always loved Christmas, and back then my Mam always made a great Christmas for us kids . . . just like the ones e used to know. (All together now . . . I feel a traditional Christmas song coming. Okay enough already! Thats why we pay carol singers to go away!) But if a tree, gifts, a fat bloke with a white beard and kissing under the mistletoe sounds like your idea of an idyllic Christmas minus Bada Bing Crosby (who was famously Catholic) I bear glad tidings youre a Pagan! The addition of Christ to the celebration of the winter solstice did not occur until 300 years after Christ died. In fact some devout Christian sects like the Puritans, forbade their members from celebrating Christmas, because it was considered a pagan holiday. So what is the history behind these traditions? Here are 12 reasons why ON THE FIRST DAY OF CHRISTMAS, THE PAGANS GAVE TO ME:

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

The Date The Virgin birth The Tree The Gifts Santa The primary colors: red, white and green The Mistletoe The lights and the witches balls (tree ornaments) The Star or Fairy at the top of the tree The Robin

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11. Yule log 12. The twelve days of Christmas The date and the Virgin birth: YULE, circa Dec 22nd, was when Pagans celebrated (and still do) the rebirth of the God from the Virgin Goddess (sound familiar?). Even the term virgin is mis-leading, as it originally did not mean a woman who hadnt had sex, but applied to priestesses during Romes pre-Christian period.
These women were not bound by secular law, were free to take all the lovers they chose and were beholden to no man. Yule, a Nordic word, literally means wheel. In other words, its not a type of wood, as in Yule log; it symbolized the turning of the year from darkness into light. The tree and The Gifts: As I said above, the Christmas tree is derived from several solstice traditions. The tradition of giving gifts came from Saturnalia, a New Years Festival of Pagan Rome; gifts were given in honour of loved ones who died during the previous year. They would exchange good-luck gifts called Stenae (lucky fruits). They also would have a big feast just like we do today. Santa and the red, white and green: The Pagan Holly King is the sacrificial Pagan God who becomes the Goddesss consort at Yule, and dies with the fading light of Winter Solstice (to be reborn 3 days later as The Oak King). His image is informed by the symbolic pagan woodsman colors: red, white, green and black. They were adopted by Santa, a.k.a St. Nicholas, whose feast day is actually Dec 6th. But hey, if youre a kid getting pressies who cares? The mistletoe, the lights and the Witches balls Mistletoe, holly and pine were all fertility symbols used by Pagans and Druids, and had been part of Yule celebrations for 1,000s of years. Mistletoe was used in an ancient Druid custom at the winter solstice because it was considered a divine plant and symbolized love and peace. The tradition of kissing under the mistletoe is Druid in origin. The lights represented the birth of the new God and the return of the light on the shortest day of the year; the lights on a Christmas tree is a carry-over from candles and fires lit by Pagans in symbolic rituals to lure back the waning Sun. Witches balls are hollow glass ornaments popular in parts of Europe in the 18th century, but their origin is much older. They were designed to ward off evil spirits and ill wishes that were directed at your family. Hanging these balls in windows was thought to tantalize spirits because of their colors, and trap them inside of the bulb when they touched it, forever holding the marauding spirit hostage. The Star or fairy on the tree and the Christmas robin Again, this is not a Christian creation. The Star of David, the Jewish six-pointed star we put on top of the tree, symbolizes the perfect union between male and female. The inverted triangle

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represents the feminine (Shekinah); the upturned phallic triangle represents the male (Yahweh). In Pagan Ireland, as in many places around the world, we love Fairies because our people looked to them to grant a Christmas wish. The Robin In Irish Celtic folklore and mythology, The Robin (seen on many a Christmas card) symbolically kills the wren to signify the return of light. A contemporary reminder of this is the wren boys, who disguise themselves with straw, and dance and play musi. These characters still appear in Irish bars, from Shannon to San Francisco, on December 26th, St. Stephens Day. The Yule log and The Twelve Days of Christmas The Scandinavian solstice traditions had a lot of influences on our celebration, besides the hanging of ornaments on evergreen trees. Their ancient festival was called Yuletide, and again, celebrated the return of the sun. One of their traditions was the Yule log. Traditionally made from oak, three holes house candles of red, white and black. Three is the symbol of the triple Goddess. She represents the three phases of womanhood: maiden, mother and crone: White for the maiden, red for the mother and black for the crone. The log was the center of the trunk of a tree that was dragged to a large fireplace where it was supposed to burn for twelve days. From this comes the twelve days of Christmas, immortalized in song and Bill Shakespeares very Pagan Twelfth Night. The festival of Twelfth Night is part of the Roman Saturnalia, the Feast of Fools and there can be little doubt that the license that marked this occasion had its origin in very ancient pagan customs. As Christianity spread across Europe, some of the old traditions took centuries to die out but the feast of the Epiphany on January 6 retained a Saturnalian flavor for many centuries. Now that weve got all that outta the way! How about a nice mince pie and a festive glass of eggnog before you head off to Midnight Mass? Hope Yall have a cool Yule now, ya hear!

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Cimerian's Collection of Yule Songs, 35 Years collecting.... ~Songs~ A Holly Jolly Yuletide Words and Music by Johnny Marks Adapted by Susan M. Shaw Have a holly jolly Yuletide It's the best time of the year I don't know if there'll be snow But have a cup of cheer Have a holly jolly Yuletide And when you walk down the street Say hello to friends you know And ev'ryone you meet Oh, ho, the mistletoe Hung where you can see Somebody waits for you Kiss her once for me Have a holly jolly Yuletide and in case you didn't hear Oh, by golly have a holly jolly Yuletide This year! ~ All Hail Ye, Simple Pagans Tune: Adeste Fideles (Oh Come, All Ye Faithful) Author Unknown All hail ye, simple pagans Gather round the Yule fire Oh come ye Oh come ye To call the Sun! Fires within us Call the fire above us Oh come let us adore him! Oh come let us adore him!

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Oh come let us adore him! Our Lord, the Sun! Yea Lord, we greet thee Born again at Yuletide! Yule fires and candle flames Are lighted for you! Come to thy children Calling for thy blessing! Oh come let us adore him! Oh come let us adore him! Oh come let us adore him! Our Lord, the Sun ~ Angels We Have Heard Tune: Angels We Have Heard On High (Gloria) words adapted by Blake TaylorMixon Angels we have heard on high Sweetly singing oer the plains And the mountains in reply Echoing their joyous strains. Gloria, see the sun reborn today. Angels know that winters nigh Turning seasons of the year See the old is passing by Bring the new one in with cheer. Gloria, celebrate the new year. ~

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Away From the Harvest Tune: Away in a Manger words adapted by Blake TaylorMixon Away from the harvest the seasons have turned The nights have grown colder and fires weve burned The stars in the heavens look down where we stand Neighbors and friends with candles in hand. The warmth is returning, the sun and the light Will brighten our days and shorten our nights Come gather around the Solstice is here The old one is passing, begins the new year. ~ Bring a Torch To: Bring a Torch, Jeannette Isabella [I'm told this doesn't scan too well] Bring a torch, O brothers and sisters Bring a torch, light Yule fires bright We gather this night to wait for the dawning come Quickly; I see the first rays of light Ah, Ah, How radiant the Mother AH, ah, How brightly shines the Sun Sing in praise of our gracious Lady sing in Praise of her glorious Son The Wheel has turned tis time for the new year Dance gaily; we shall welcome the Sun Ah, Ah, How radiant the Mother AH, ah, How brightly shines the Sun ~

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Carol of the Bells Traditional Ukranian Carol words adapted by Hilda Marshall Hark! How the bells, sweet silver bells All seem to say, "Throw cares away." Yuletide is here, bringing good cheer To young and old, meek and the bold Ding, dong, ding, dong, that is their song, With joyful ring, all caroling One seems to hear words of good cheer From everywhere, filling the air O, how they pound, raising the sound O'er hill and dale, telling their tale Gaily they ring, while people sing Songs of good cheer, Yuletide is here! Merry, merry, merry, merry Yuletide! Merry, merry, merry, merry Yuletide! On, on they send, on without end Their joyful tone to every home Hark! How the bells, sweet silver bells All seem to say, "Throw cares away." Yuletide is here, bringing good cheer To young and old, meek and the bold Ding, dong, ding, dong, that is their song With joyful ring, all caroling. One seems to hear words of good cheer From everywhere, filling the air O, how they pound, raising the sound O'er hill and dale, telling their tale Gaily they ring, while people sing Songs of good cheer, Yuletide is here! Merry, merry, merry, merry Yuletide! Merry, merry, merry, merry Yuletide! On, on they send, on without end Their joyful tone to every home. ~

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Chanukah/Solstice Written by Linda Hirschhorn Recorded on 'Gather Round: Songs of Celebration And Renewal' Turning turning spirits yearning Reaching for the night Colors going, shadows growing Darkening the night Ancient story told, renewed with the cold Mystery of light, burnt into the night ~ Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire Words by Robert Wells adapted by Susan M. Shaw Music by Mel Torme Chestnuts roasting on an open fire Jack Frost nipping at your nose Yuletide carols being sung by a choir And folks dressed up like Eskimos Everybody knows a turkey and some mistletoe Help to make the season bright Tiny tots with their eyes all a glow Will find it hard to sleep tonight They know that Santa's on his way He's loaded lots of toys and goodies on his sleigh And ev'ry mother's child is gonna spy To see if reindeer really know how to fly And so I'm offering this simple phrase To kids from one to ninety-two Although it's been said many times, many ways "Merry Yuletide to you!" ~

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Christmas Day in the Morning Tune: I Saw Three Ships Children's laughter in the air The Smell of pine is everywhere With all the love that we can share On christmas day in the morning Thank the Lord and Lady then For that warm peace we feel within When we gather once again On Christmas Day in the Morning The wonder of the virgin birth The child who brought us love and mirth Giving all of his souls's worth On Christmas Day in the Morning Yet so many years before We knew the one we still adore The Lady guiding us to shore On Christmas day in the morning The yonder standing stones impart Awakening a hidden part Longing deep within our hearts On Christmas day in the morning With the ancient ones give voice Dance together is our choice Share the mysteries and rejoice On Christmas day in the morning Children's laughter in the air The Smell of pine is everywhere With all the love that we can share On christmas day in the morning ~

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Christmas Time Is Pagan! Tune: Gloria in Excelsis Deo (Angels We Have Heard On High) Christmas time is here again, Decorations everywhere. Christmas carols ringing out, Gentle pagans, we don't care. Chorus: Glorious! Christmas time is pagan! Glorious! Christmas time is pagan! Modern folks all celebrate What they learned in Sunday School. In December, they don't know They are celebrating Yule! Chorus Let them have their Christmas trees, Decked in red and green and blue. We rejoice at every one! Christmas trees are pagan, too. Chorus Bowls of bubbly Christmas cheer, Fill your cup and quench your thirst. They think the tradition's theirs. Wassail bowls were pagan, first. Chorus Every door and window bears Wreaths of holly, wreaths of pine. Circles represent the Sun. Every wreath is yours and mine. Chorus Christmas lights on Christmas trees, Candle flames burn higher and higher,

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Let us cheer along, my friends, As they light their Yuletide fire. Chorus There's a possibility That this song is yours and mine 'Cause the tune was known to all Back in A.D. one-two-nine. Chorus ~ Dancing in a Wiccan Wonderland Tune: Walking in a Winter Wonderland words adapted by "Alexander & Aarcher" Pagans sing, are you listenin', Altar's set,candles glisten, It's a Magickal night, we're having tonight, Dancing in a Wiccan Wonderland. Chorus: In a Circle we can light a Yule Fire, And await the rising of the Sun, It's the Great Wheel turning for the new year, Loaded with abundance and great fun. Blades held high, censer smoking, God and Goddess, we're invoking, Through Elements Five, we celebrate life, Dancing in a Wiccan Wonderland. Queen of Heaven, is in Her place, Triple Goddess, now the Crone Face, Above and Below, She's the Goddess we know, Dancing in a Wiccan Wonderland. Chorus Now the God, is the Provider, Supplying game for our Fire, Above and Below, He's the Horned One we Know,

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Dancing in a Wiccan Wonderland. Later on, by the fire, Cone of Power, gettin' higher It's a Magickal Night we're having tonight, Dancing in a Wiccan Wonderland. ~ Day-O Tune: "Day-O" by Harry Belafonte words adapted by Tina Galfo (Get out your Harry Belafonte records and study the rhythm carefully - this song is a lot of fun with a set of hand drums!) Day-o, Day-o, Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Day, misa day, misa day, misa day-o. Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Tonight we dance till the morning come. Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Tomorrow we greet the newborn Sun. Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Now is the darkest season of the year but, Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Now is the darkest season of the year but, Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. The darkness flies before his face. Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Light is returning to this place. Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Day, misa day-o, Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Day, misa day-o, Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. The Lady has given birth to her son. Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. When he grow up they gonna have some fun.

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Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. The season wheel it will forever turn. Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. As the fire within, it will ever burn. Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Now is the darkest season of the year but, Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Now is the darkest season of the year but, Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Day, misa day-o, Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Day, misa day-o, Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Now is the darkest season of the year but. Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Now is the darkest season of the year but. Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Day-o, Day-o, Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. Day, misa day, misa day, misa day-o. Daylight come and the Sun is reborn. ~ Deck the Halls Traditional Deck the halls with boughs of holly Fa la la la la la la la la Tis the season to be jolly Fa la la la la la la la la Don we now our gay apparel Fa la la la la la la la la Troll the ancient Yuletide carols Fa la la la la la la la la See the blazing Yule before us Fa la la la la la la la la Strike the harp and join the chorus Fa la la la la la la la la

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Follow me in merry measure Fa la la la la la la la la While I tell of Yuletide treasure Fa la la la la la la la la Fast away the old year passes Fa la la la la la la la la Hail the new, ye lads and lasses Fa la la la la la la la la Sing we joyous all together Fa la la la la la la la la Heedless of the wind and weather Fa la la la la la la la la ~ Dona Nobis Pacem (Grant Us Peace) Best sung as a round Dona nobis pacem, pacem Dona nobis pacem. Do-na nobis pacem Dona nobis pacem. Do-na nobis pacem Dona nobis pacem. ~ Faunus the Roman Goat Foot Tune: Rudolph the Red nosed Reindeer words by Morven, Jennifer, Roger, Chip, & BG Faunus the Roman Goat-God Had a very rigid prick And if you ever saw it You would say it's quite a trick All the other deities Used to leer suggestively They always wanted Faunus To Join in the revelry

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Then one frosty Saturnal Juno made this call "Faunus since you're hung so well, Won't you ring my solstice bell?" Then all the others pouted And they muttered jealously "Faunus, the Roman goat-god Better save a turn for me!" ~ Frosty the Snowman Words and Music by Steve Nelson and Jack Rollins Frosty the Snowman was a jolly happy soul With a corncob pipe and a button nose And two eyes made out of coal Frosty the Snowman was a fairy tale, they say He was made of snow, but the children know How he came to life one day There must have been some magic In that old top hat they found For when they placed it on his head He began to dance around! Frosty the Snowman was alive as he could be And the children say he could laugh and play Just the same as you and me He led them down the streets of town Right to the traffic cop And he only paused a moment when He heard her holler, "Stop!" Frosty the Snowman had to hurry on his way But he said goodbye, saying "Don't you cry, I'll be back again some day!" ~

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Gloria Tune: Gloria in Excelsis Deo (Angels We Have Heard On High) words adapted by Ellen Reed Snow lies deep upon the Earth Still our voices warmly sing Heralding the glorious birth Of the Child, the Winter King Chorus: Glo -- ria! In excelsis Deo! Glo -- ria! In excelsis Dea! Our triumphant voices claim Joy and hope and love renewed And our Lady's glad refrain Answer Winter's solitude Chorus In Her arms a holy Child Promises a glowing Light Through the winter wind so wild He proclaims the growing Light. Chorus Now the turning of the year Of the greater Turning sings Passing age of cold and fear Soon our golden summer brings. Chorus ~

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Glory to the New Born King words by Ellen Reed (1st verse) Brothers, sisters, come to sing Glory to the new-born King! Gardens peaceful, forests wild Celebrate the Winter Child! Now the time of glowing starts! Joyful hands and joyful hearts! Cheer the Yule log as it burns! For once again the Sun returns! Brothers, sisters, come and sing! Glory to the new-born King! Brothers, sisters, singing come Glory to the newborn Sun Through the wind and dark of night Celebrate the coming light. Suns glad rays through fear's cold burns Life through death the Wheel now turns Gather round the Yule log and tree Celebrate Life's mystery Brothers, sisters, singing come Glory to the new-born Sun. ~ Gods Bless Ye Merry Paganfolk Tune: God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen words adapted by Anie Burke-Webb Gods bless ye merry, Paganfolk Let nothing you afright There's naught but peace will touch us here On this the longest night For our Great Mother will give birth And turn the dark to light Chorus: And the Wheel's turning round and round Round and round.

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And the Wheel's turning round and round. Into the west's fast dimming light The Dark God must retreat As all of life must come at last To death the longest sleep But our Great Mother then gives birth The circle is complete Chorus At morning's first bright ray of light Arrives the Sun Child's birth Returning through the Mother's womb Life promised to the Earth Now that our Mother's labor's done Rejoice with song and mirth ~ God Rest Ye Merry, Paganfolk Tune: God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen God rest ye merry, paganfolk, Let nothing you dismay. Remember that the Sun returns Upon this Solstice day. The growing dark is ending now And Spring is on its way. Oh, tidings of comfort and joy, Comfort and joy! Oh, tidings of comfort and joy. The Goddess rest ye merry, too, And keep you safe from harm. Remember that we live within The circle of Her arms, And may Her love give years to come A very special charm. Oh, tidings of comfort and joy, Comfort and joy! Oh, tidings of comfort and joy!

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~ Gods Rest Ye Merry Tune: God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen words adapted by Blake TaylorMixon inspired by Ellen Reed Gods rest ye merry gentlefolk Let nothing you dismay Remember that the on returns Upon this Solstice Day The growing dark is ended now And Spring is on its way Chorus: Oh tidings of comfort and joy Comfort and joy, Oh tidings of comfort and joy The people at this gathering Rejoice in heart and mind Old Winters back is broken now And sorrows of all kind Within the darkness of the year A new hope we shall find. Chorus We gather in together Around a fire bright In cold and dark we recognize The Winters longest night The bells ring out, our hearts rejoice We welcome back the light! ~ Gods Rest Ye Merry Paganfolk Tune: God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen Gods rest ye merry pagan folk Let none of you dismay. Remember that the Sun returns Upon this Solstice Day

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The growing dark is ended now And spring is on its way Oh tidings of comfort and Joy Comfort and Joy Oh tidings of comfort and Joy The winter's worst still lies ahead Fierce Tempest Snow and Rain Beneath the blanket on the ground The Spark of life remains The Sun's warm rays caress the seeds To raise Life's song again Oh tidings of comfort and Joy Comfort and Joy Oh tidings of comfort and Joy Within the blessed apple lies The promise of the Queen For from this pentacle shall rise The orchards fresh and green The Earth shall blossom once again The air be sweet and clean Oh tidings of comfort and Joy Comfort and Joy Oh tidings of comfort and Joy ~ Good King Wenceslas I Traditional Carol Good King Wenceslas looked out On the Feast of Yule When the snow lay round about Deep in Winter's rule Brightly shone the Moon that night Though the frost was cruel When a poor roe came in sight Seeking winter fuel. "Hither, page, and stand by me If thou know'st it, telling yonder stag, O whose is he? Where and how his dwelling?" "Sire, he lives a good league hence

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Underneath the mountain Right against the forest fence By good Brighit's fountain." "Bring me apples; bring me corn Bring my warm clothes hither He shall dine `fore Solstice morn When we bring them thither." Page and monarch, forth they went Forth they went together through the rude wind's wild lament And the bitter weather. "Page, the night is darker now And the wind blows stronger Fails my heart, I know not how I can go no longer." "Mark my footsteps, my good King Tread thou in them boldly Thou shalt find fierce Winter's sting Freeze thy blood less coldly." In the Oak King's steps he trod Where the snow lay dinted Heat was in the very sod Which the God had printed. Therefore, Paganfolk, be sure Any rank possessing Ye who now will bless the Earth Shall, yourselves, find blessing. ~ Good King Wenceslas II Traditional Carol Good King Wenceslas looked out On the Feast of Stephen When the snow lay round about Deep and crisp and even Brightly shone the moon that night Though the frost was cruel When a poor man came in sight Gathering winter fuel.

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"Hither page and stand by me If thou know'st it, telling Yonder peasant, who is he Where and what his dwelling?" "Sire, he lives a good league hence Underneath the mountain Right against the forest fence By Saint Agnes' fountain." "Bring me flesh and bring me wine Bring me pine logs hither Thou and I will see him dine When we bear them thither." Page and monarch forth they went Forth they went together Through the rude wind's wild lament And the bitter weather. "Sire, the night is darker now And the wind blows stronger; Fails my heart, I know not how, I can go no longer." "Mark my footsteps, my good page; Tread thou in them boldly. Thou shalt find the winter's rage Freeze thy blood less coldly." Though the fire burned golden bright On the palace fender Twice as warm love's faithful light True and strong and tender Therefore people everywhere Wealth or rank possessing You who now will bless the poor Shall yourselves find blessing. ~ Good Morrow, Happy Paganfolk Tune: "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" words by William Baldwin Good morrow, happy paganfolk, On this great day of Yule. And may ye brightly celebrate

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And sing and dance and fool. And deeply drain the wine of life From Heaven's glistening pool. Chorus: O partake of the ecstasy and joy, Laughter and joy, O partake of the ecstasy and joy. The good and gracious Lady, Her only law is love, To cherish every living thing Below us and above, She reigneth as She did of old The Queen of Heaven above. Chorus The great and mighty Horned One Whose trident some do see, Destroys and builds the world anew From Birth and Death and Thee! He leads us through illusion To the everliving tree. Chorus Now may the GODS and GODDESSES Bestow on us the grace, To ever walk in balance with The Spirits of the place. And lead us all to Paradise To greet them face to face. Chorus ~

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Good Pagan Folk, Rejoice Tune: Good Christian Men Rejoice Good Pagan folk, rejoice With heart and soul and voice Give ye heed to what we say News! News! Our Lord the Sun is born today Great him as the dawn's first light Bids farewell to dark of night The Sun returns today The Sun returns today Good Pagan folk, rejoice With heart and soul and voice Gather round the Yuletide tree Peace! Peace! Hope he brings for you and me Winter's cold is nearly gone We wait for spring with Joyous song Our Lord returns to Earth Our Lord returns to Earth Good Pagan folk, rejoice With heart and soul and voice Praise our Lady, praise her Son Joy! Joy! New life they bring to everyone Dance and sing and merry meet As the Lord of Light we greet The Sun returns today The Sun returns today ~ Hark! Tune: Hark the Herald Angels Sing words adapted by Blake TaylorMixon Hark the people all shall cry See the new sun in the sky Hail the rebirth of the sun Winters turn is now begun Darkness soon shall pass away Spring to follow in its day

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Come and gather here to sing Glorious light the sun will bring Hark the people all shall cry See the new sun in the sky! Mark the passing of the year Gather round and bring good cheer Peace on earth is what we need Joined as one we can succeed Joyful then can nations rise Joined in one triumphant cry Power to the ones who stand Heart to heart and hand in hand Mark the passing of the year Gather round and bring good cheer! ~ Hark the Neo-Pagans Sing Tune: "Hark the Herald Angels Sing" words adapted by "Sunblade" Hark the neo-Pagans sing, Glory to the Holly King! Peace on Earth and mercy mild, God and Goddess reconciled, Hear us now as we proclaim, We have risen from the flames, Our ancient Craft now we reclaim, In the God and Goddess' names Hark the neo-Pagans sing, Glory to the Holly King! Herne by highest love adored, Herne the ever-reborn Lord, At all times behold Him come, Offspring of the Holy One, Veiled in flesh, the Godhead see, Hail Incarnate Deity! Our ancient Craft now we reclaim, in the God and Goddess' names Hark the neo-Pagans sing, Glory to the Holly King! ~

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Have Yourself a Merry Little Yuletide Tune: Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane words adapted by Hilda Marshall Have yourself a merry little Yuletide Let your heart be light From now on our troubles will be out of sight Have yourself a merry little Yuletide Make the Sabbat gay From now on our troubles will be miles away. Chorus: Here we are as in olden days Happy golden days of yore Faithful friends who are dear to us Gather near to us once more. Through the years we all will be together If the Fates allow Hang a shining star upon the highest bough And have yourself a merry little Yuletide now. ~ Hear Diana To an Original Tune by BarleySinger Crystal light, the dragon's might, Pulling down the silver light. Hallowed glen, we move again, The Solstice is tonight. Chorus: (sing twice) Hear Diana, voices calling On this longest night. We are one in fairy glen Within the silver light. Verse 2: Dragon pow'r and fairy flower, Magic in the air.

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Old and new are one with you A single thought they share. Chorus: (2x) Verse 3: Mistletoe, the herbs that grow, And crystals from the earth, Show the ways to elder days, Upon the ancient earth. Chorus: (2x) Repeat Verse 1 and (Chorus 2x) ~ Here We Come A-Wassailing Traditional Carol chorus by Hilda Marshall Here we come a wassailing Among the leaves so green Here we come a-wandering So fair to be seen Chorus: Love and joy come to you Peace and hope and friendship too And we bless you and wish you a happy new year And we wish you a happy new year! Chorus We are not daily beggars who Beg from door to door But we are neighbors' children Whom you have seen before Chorus We have got a little purse Of stretching leather skin

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We want a little money To line it well within Chorus Call up the butler of this house Put on his golden ring Let him bring us a glass of beer And better we shall sing Chorus Bring us out a table and spread it with a cloth Bring us out a moldy cheese And some of your Yuletide loaf Chorus God bless the master of the house The mistress bless also And all the little children Around the table go Chorus Good master and good mistress While you sit by the fire Pray think of us poor children A-wand'ring in the mire ~ Holly King Suggested Tune: In the Bleak Midwinter Music by Gustav Holst Source Unknown Sing we of a mystery, now as long ago Blood red holly berries, blood upon on the snow The Oak king shall rise, the waxing year to bring Therefore bid we farewell to the Holly king Now in deep midwinter all seems in a trance Comes the golden Oak King in his age old dance

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Comes he to slay, yet honor he does he bring To his fallen brother the darksome Holly King In the bright midsummer the year's wheel turned around Then shall be the Oak King's blood upon the ground Ever it comes, once more the years waning Then shall be victorious the Darksome Holly King Sing we of the Mystery now as long ago Blood red holly berries, blood upon on the snow The Oak king shall rise waxing year to bring Therefore bid we farewell to the Holly king ~ In the Bleak Midwinter Music by Gustav Holst first verse by Christina Rosetti, slightly altered Additional verses by Laura Deal Raeder In the bleak midwinter, frosty wind makes moan. Earth stands hard as iron, water like a stone. Snow has fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow. In the bleak midwinter, it is ever so. Darkness now surrounds us as the nights grow long, Yet we fill the night time with our hopeful song. Winter's cold won't reach us here, where we light our fire, As we burn the old year on its funeral pyre. Now the new year beckons, even in this night. Soon the days will lengthen, and our hearts grow light. Hope will grow within us as we look ahead, And we see that spring wakes out of winter's bed. Light will follow darkness, as the earth turns round, Sunlight follows moonlight, thawing frozen ground. So our lives renew with every dawning day, And with every new year, blue skies follow gray. ~

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Jingle Bell Rock Written by Joe Beal and Jim Boothe Jingle bell, jingle bell, jingle bell rock Jingle bells swing and jingle bells ring Snowin' and blowin' are bushels of fun Now the jingle rock has begun Jingle bell, jingle bell, jingle bell rock Jingle bells chime in jingle bell time Dancin' and prancin' in Jingle Bell Square In the frosty air What a bright time, it's the right time To rock the night away Jingle bell time is a swell time To go ridin' in a one-horse sleigh Giddy up, jingle horse, pick up your feet Jingle around the clock Mix and mingle in a jingle bell beat That's the Jingle Bell Rock! ~ Jingle Bells Written by John Pierpont Dashing through the snow In a one-horse open sleigh O'er the fields we go Laughing all the way Bells on bob-tails ring Making spirits bright What fun it is to ride and sing A sleighing song tonight! Chorus: Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way Oh, what fun it is to ride In a one-horse open sleigh! Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way Oh, what fun it is to ride In a one-horse open sleigh!

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A day or two ago I thought I'd take a ride Soon Miss Fanny Bright Was seated at my side The horse was lean and lank Misfortune seem'd his lot He got into a drifed bank And we, we got upsot! Chorus Now the ground is white Go it while you're young Take the girls tonight And sing this sleighing song Just get a bob-tailed bay Two-forty for his speed Then hitch him to an open sleigh And crack! You'll take the lead! Chorus ~ Joy to the World I Music by Lowell Mason words adapted by Lunaea Wetherstone Joy to the World! The Sun returns! Let all who live rejoice! Let every heart receive the healing light And every voice be heard And every voice be heard And every voice in song be heard! ~

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Joy to the World II Music by Lowell Mason Joy to the world! The Lord is come! Let Earth receive her king! Let every heart prepare him room And Heaven and Nature sing And Heaven and Nature sing And Heaven and Heaven and Nature sing. Welcome our King who brings us life Our Lady gives him birth! His living light returneth to warm the seeds within us And wake the sleeping earth And wake the sleeping earth And wake and wake the sleeping earth. Light we the fires to greet our Lord, Our Light! Our Life! Our King! Let every voice be lifted to sing his holy praises As Heaven and Nature sing As Heaven and Nature sing As Heaven as Heaven and Nature sing. Joy to the Earth! The Light returns! And sunlight fills the air The tide has turned, the Sun has been reborn. And hope is everywhere And hope is everywhere And hope, and hope, is everywhere. Dark ruled the Earth, and death has reined But on the Wheel does spin From out the womb of night, is birthed the Infant Light. The Sun has come again The Sun has come again The Sun, the Sun, has come again. Mother of all, to You we sing! In praise this glorious morn. For Earth and Sky, fire, water, and life. In You we are reborn, in You we are reborn, in You, in You, we are reborn. ~

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Joy to the World III Music by Lowell Mason Source Unknown Joy to the world! The Lady walks, O let the echoes ring! The power of Her love each single heart unlocks, And heaven and nature sing, And heaven and nature sing, And heaven, and heaven, and nature sing. Joy to the world! For peace shall reign As we, our (wimmin) pow'r employ! O, field & flood, rock, hill, & plain, Repeat the sounding joy, Repeat the sounding joy, Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy. We share the world with truth & grace, & let our blessings prove The glories of our carefulness, And wonders of our love, And wonders of our love, And wonders, wonders, of our love. ~ Joy to the World IV Music by Lowell Mason words adapted by Karen Deal Robinson Joy to the world, the new year's come. Now earth prepares for spring. Let every hearth with firelight bloom, And heaven and nature sing, And heaven and nature sing, And heaven, and heaven and nature sing. Joy to the earth, now gladness reigns, And birds their songs employ, While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains Repeat the sounding joy, Repeat the sounding joy, Repeat, repeat the sounding joy.

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No more will cold and darkness grow, Though frost still coats the ground. We wait to hear the rivers flow As far as hope is found, As far as hope is found, As far, as far as hope is found. She heals the earth with truth and grace, And asks us all to prove The glories of Her righteousness And wonders of Her love, And wonders of Her love, And wonders, and wonders of Her love. ~ Joy to the World V Music by Lowell Mason words adapted by Blake TaylorMixon What night is this so calm and cold? We gather round, both young and old, Above the stars are shining bright This is Solstice night. This, this night we sing, The seasons turn and treasures bring, This, this the longest night, We welcome back the light. Now Winters turn has just begun A time of peace for everyone Restful dark and stories told, The year is growing old. This, this night we sing ~

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Lady Moon Shine Softly Tune: O little town of Bethlehem Lady moon shines softly down To light the Earth below As we, her children, gather here Around the Yule fire's glow We wait for morning's dawning First light of holy birth Our Lady turns the wheel of life Her Son returns to Earth With joy we'll greet his dawning A new year has begun With increased light is bright new hope Reborn in Everyone. ~ Masters in This Hall Tune: Masters in This Hall Source Unknown Masters in this Hall Hear the news today From messengers of old who won't be turned away Masters in this hall, Open up the door Hear her footsteps now approaching, Heed her voice we do implore Masters in this Hall Open up your eyes Now the Lady stands before you Children of the earth arise Masters in this Hall, hear what we do say The Goddess has come in and she is here to stay The Goddess has come i-in And no folks should be sad Come with us, we praise, we si-ing, Hail the Queen, rejoice, be glad

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The goddess has come in Where all men make good cheer Tidings of her joy we bring you, Banish freely tides of fear Masters in this Hall, hear what we do say The Goddess has come in and she is here to stay ~ May Ye Be Merry, Gentlefolk Tune: "God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen" words adapted by Karen Deal Robinson May ye be merry, gentlefolk, Let nothing you dismay. Although the nights are cold and dark This is the shortest day. And soon the days will grow again As springtime comes our way. Oh, tidings of comfort and joy, Comfort and joy. Oh, tidings of comfort and joy. The midnight moon rides high and clear On this the longest night, And in the frosty darkness The stars are burning bright, And though the sun is buried deep The sky is filled with light. Oh, tidings of comfort and joy, Comfort and joy. Oh, tidings of comfort and joy. ~ Moon of Silver I Tune: We Three Kings Source Unknown Maiden, Mother, Ancient Crone, Queen of Heaven on your throne, Praise we sing Thee, Love we bring Thee,

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For all that you have shown. Chorus: Oh, Moon of Silver, Sun of Gold, Gentle Lady, Lord so bold! Guide us ever, failing never, Lead us in ways of old. Lord of Darkness, Lord of Light, Gentle Brother, King of Might, Praise we sing thee, Love we bring Thee On this Solstice night. Chorus ~ Moon of Silver II Tune: We Three Kings Come Thou, Lord, the Newborn Sun, Come, Sweet Mother, Holy One. Praise we sing Thee, Love we bring Thee As ever shall be done. Chorus: Oh, moon of silver, sun of gold! Gentle Lady, Lord so bold! Guide us ever, failing never, lead us all in ways of old. Maiden, Mother, Ancient Crone, Queen of Heaven on your throne, Praise we sing Thee, Love we bring Thee, For all that you have shown. Chorus Lord of Darkness, Lord of Light, Gentle Brother, King of Might! Praise we sing Thee, Love we bring Thee On this Solstice Night.

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Chorus ~ Mother Berta's Coming to Town Tune: Santa Claus Is Coming to Town Source Unknown You better watch out when winter comes nigh You better not doubt, I'm telling you why Mother Berta's coming to town She carries a sack made out of skin She dumps the toys out and stuffs the kids in Mother Berta's coming to town She rides on Master Skeggi A Goat whose back is strong Her beard is grey and scraggly And her tail is ten feet long! With six or eight horns, a moustache or two Make a mistake, she's coming for YOU! Mother Berta's coming to town. She knows with whom your sleeping She knows with whom you wake She knows each thought you're thinking So don't THINK! For Goddess sake So when the winds howl way up in the sky Listen as she and Skeggi pass by Mother Berta's coming Mother Berta's coming Mother Berta's coming Mother Berta's coming to town ~

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O Come All Ye Neighbors Tune: Adeste Fideles (Oh Come All Ye Faithful) Words adapted by Blake TaylorMixon Oh come all ye neighbors, joyful with each other O come ye, o come ye on Solstice night Come and behold it, mystery unfolding O come and join the chorus O come and join the chorus O come and join the chorus The sun is reborn. Sing all together, sing with hearts rejoicing O sing all ye citizens and gather around Glory above, the sun is now returning. Yea sun we greet thee, reborn this happy morning Rising in glory you return from afar Dance of the heavens, music never ending. ~ O Holy Night I Music by Adolphe Adam words adapted by Dianne T. DeShea O holy night! The stars shine in their brightness. It is the night of the dear Sun Child's birth. Long lay the world in growing cold and darkness 'Til He appeared, casting light o'er the earth. A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn. All nature sings! Oh raise your joyous voices! Oh night divine! This night the Sun is born! Oh night divine! Oh night, oh night divine! ~

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O Holy Night II Music by Adolphe Adam words adapted by Shekhinah Mountainwater O holy night, the stars are brightly shining. It is the night of the Sun God's rebirth Long lay the world, in cold and darkness pining. `Til He appeared, and the soul felt its worth. A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices. For yonder breaks, a new and glorious morn. Rise from your knees! O hear the Pagan's voices! O night divine. O night when light was born. O night divine. O night divine. [Variant Verses] O holy night, the stars are brightly shining It is the night of the Goddess's birth Long lay the world in patriarchy pining Til She appeared and the soul felt its worth A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn Rise from your knees! O hear the women's voices! O night divine, O night when Light is born O night divine, O night, O night divine. ~ O Holy Night III Music by Adolphe Adam Source Unknown O holy night, so peaceful, dark, and quiet We're stuffed and tipsy, each Priestess and Priest Witches are holy, but find it hard to diet We may not orgy, but boy, can we feast! With stew and wassail, apples, nuts, and pumpkin We celebrate the deepest truths of life Please, pass the salt. Oh, taste that turkey dressing Oh, what will we weigh after seconds on the corn Oh, what a way to pray! On this night when God's reborn.

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~ O Holy Night IV Music by Adolphe Adam O holy night the stars are brightly shining It is the night of the sun's rebirth Long lay the land, In cold of winter pining Till he appears to shine warmth on the Earth A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices As yonder breaks the new and glorious dawn Sing now with Joy O sing in celebration O night divine O night, of holy birth O night, divine O night O night divine Moon up above We gather in your soft light And wait for him, son of light to appear Orb of our mother Who holds us in her keeping Send us your child To bring warmth to our souls The winter is cold, the nights are long in darkness We long for the spring , the hope that now begins Sing now with Joy O sing in celebration O night divine O night, of holy birth O night, divine O night O night divine ~ O Tannenbaum I Traditional O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum Thy leaves are so unchanging O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum Thy leaves are so unchanging

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Not only green when summer's here But also when 'tis cold and drear O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum Thy leaves are so unchanging O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum You fill all hearts with gaiety O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum You fill all hearts with gaiety On Solstice Day you stand so tall Affording joy to one and all O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum You fill all hearts with gaiety O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum You stand in verdant beauty O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum You stand in verdant beauty Your boughs are green in summer's glow And do not fade in winter's snow O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum You stand in verdant beauty O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum Much pleasure doth thou bring me O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum Much pleasure doth thou bring me For ev'ry year thou lovely tree Brings to us all both joy and glee O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum Much pleasure doth thou bring me O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum Thy candles shine out brightly O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum Thy candles shine out brightly Each bough doth hold its tiny light That makes each day to sparkle bright O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum Thy candles shine out brightly ~

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O Tannenbaum II Traditional Carol words adapted by Hilda Marshall O tannenbaum, O tannenbaum How true you stand unchanging! O tannenbaum, O tannenbaum How true you stand unchanging! Your boughs so green in summertime Remain as green in wintertime O tannenbaum, O tannenbaum How true you stand unchanging! O tannenbaum, O tannenbaum Your message is enduring! O tannenbaum, O tannenbaum Your message is enduring! Of all the trees of field and hill You best recall the Lady's will O tannenbaum, O tannenbaum Your message is enduring! O tannenbaum, O tannenbaum You teach us hope and patience! O tannenbaum, O tannenbaum You teach us hope and patience! Through icy day and frozen night You bear the promise of the Light O tannenbaum, O tannenbaum You teach us hope and patience! ~ O Yuletide Tree Tune: O Tannenbaum Source Unknown O Yuletide Tree, O Yuletide Tree How lovely are thy branches O Yuletide Tree, O Yuletide Tree How lovely are thy branches Bring joyful tidings of great cheer O Yuletide Tree, O Yuletide Tree To us you are so lovely.

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O Yuletide Tree, O Yuletide Tree Evergreen and fragrant O Yuletide Tree, O Yuletide Tree Evergreen and fragrant We bring you in our home to be A sign of life's eternity O Yuletide Tree, O Yuletide Tree Forever green and lovely O Yuletide Tree, O Yuletide Tree Thank you for your blessings O Yuletide Tree, O Yuletide Tree Thank you for your blessings with golden stars and twinkling light You cheer us on this holy night O Yuletide Tree, O Yuletide Tree Thou art most fair and lovely ~ Oh, Come All Ye Faithful Traditional Carol (Adeste Fideles) words adapted by Ellen Reed Oh, come all ye faithful Gather round the Yule Fire Oh, come ye, oh, come ye, To call the Sun! Fires within us Call the Fire above us O, come, let us invoke Him! O, come, let us invoke Him! O, come, let us invoke Him! Our Lord, the Sun! Yea, Lord, we greet Thee! Born again at Yuletide! Yule fires and candle flames Are lighted for You! Come to thy children Calling for thy blessing! O, come let us invoke Him O, come let us invoke Him O, come let us invoke Him Our Lord, the Sun!

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~ One More Christmas Tree Tune: O Tannenbaum words adapted by Daniel J. Thompson O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree Made of al-u-min-i-um. O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree You can get them, anyone. Some are big, and some are small. You can get any size at all. O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree Made of al-u-min-i-um. O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree I sell them for ten dollars. O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree They come in many colors. Some are red, and some are blue. They even come in plastic, too! O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree I sell them for ten dollars. O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree You should buy one now from me. O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree Satisfaction guaranteed. From now until the twenty-third The lowest price you've ever heard. O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree Buy one now, and get one FREE! ~ Our Lady Greensleeves I Tune: Greensleeves (What Child Is This) Source Unknown Midwinter moon is shining bright The yuletide log is burning. The people gather 'round tonight The Sabbat wheel is turning.

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Joy! Mirth! The Sun's rebirth! Now as of old we greet Thee. Gladdening is the song we sing Of praises to the Lady. 'Twas at the feast of bright Beltane When we all were a-Maying, Sweet minstrel Queen in Her gown of green Spring roundelay was playing. And though now roped in snow Her wintry garb deceives, for Bedipped with holly and mistletoe She is still Our Lady Greensleeves. So drink ye wassail everyone Good Pagans all made merry With wine as red as the reborn Sun, As red as holly-berry. Dancing, come join the ring, As Her Yuletide spell she weaves. Fair Queen, the evergreen, Sweet lovely Lady Greensleeves. ~ Our Lady Greensleeves II Tune: Greensleeves (What Child Is This?) Author Unknown The winter moon is shining bright The yuletide log is burning Good people gather and tonight the sabbat wheel is turning Joy, Mirth, the Sun's rebirth Noels of old we greet thee Life's ring is the song we sing of praises of the Lady T'was at the feast of bright Beltaine when we all were a maying Sweet minstrel, pleated her gown of grains Spring round the lady was playing And though now robed in snow Her wintery garb deceives

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For bedecked with holly and mistletoe She is still our Lady Greensleeves So drink thee wassail everyone Good pagans all make merry With wine as red as the reborn sun As red as Holly berry Dance, sing, come join the ring As the yuletide's boughs she weaves Fair Queen, the evergreen, Sweet lovely Lady Greensleeves ~ Pagans, One and All Tune: "Masters in This Hall" words by Willow Firesong Verse 1: Pagans one and all Hear what I do say Words from deep within And ever I you pray Chorus: Hail hail hail to the Earth below Mother of all life upon her, and the source of all we know Hail hail hail to the Sun above Our Lord the Sun is born again, the source of Light and Love Verse 2: Born again at Solstice, the Sun God rules the Winter Skies; His Consort, Earth our Mother; The Year between them flies. Chorus Verse 3: Through the days of Springtime The Sun God grows apace

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Turning to Her flowers A gentle, smiling face. Chorus Verse 4: Come the May and Beltaine, The Sun God gains the Lady's Love. Her mantle green with courting; His fullness reigns above. Chorus Verse 5: Through the blaze of Summer, The Sun God burns his fiercest then His pride is in his Lover; The growth she shows within. Chorus Verse 6: Come the time of First Fruits The Sun God then his strength has spent The essence of his being Flows forth, as through a rent. Chorus Verse 7: Then begins the Autumn, His Mother, Night, weeps out her rains And taking him within her, The cycle starts again. Chorus Verse 8: With laughter and with feasting Through the growing Winter's night The Lady grows to Solstice,

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The rebirth of the Light. Chorus Verse 9: Watch her swelling belly As Night spreads through the skies The Lady of the Winter, The Moon between her thighs. Chorus Verse 10: Caught between the uprights, See the shining Solstice star. The Hinge-pin of the Winter, Now push the door ajar! Chorus Verse 11: Through the Lady's Labors On this longest Winter's Night Comes the Growing Sun God The rebirth of the Light! Chorus Verse 12: Dark the night has gripped us Through the building Winter's Cold So round the fires we gather As in days of old. Chorus Verse 13: From the crackling fire Watch the sparks leap to the sky Conjuring the Sun King To once again ride high

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Chorus Verse 14: In the deep Midwinter Through the frozen snow Comes the Sun reborn To set the skies aglow Chorus Verse 15: So in the depths of Darkness Observe the Shining Solstice Star That marks the depths of Winter Means Springtime won't be far. ~

Santa Clause Is Pagan Too By Emerald Rose Oh, Santa Claus is Pagan too Just like all the rest And if you are a merry witch Hell bring you all the best So get that star up on the roof And bake those cookies too Cause Christmas time is really Yule And Santas Pagan too Hes got that Buddha belly And his Pops the Holly King

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Youve dressed him in that British Coat The caps a Nordic thing You took the horns right off his head And stuck them on his deer But he still flies high like Jupiter With a belly full of beer Hey, Santa Claus is Pagan too Just like all the rest And if you are a merry witch Hell bring you all the best So get that star up on the roof And bake those cookies too Cause Christmas time is really Yule And Santas Pagan too Now history says Christ was likely Not a Capricorn But if you want to share our Yule We dont care when hes born Come celebrate the dawning Of the sun kings bright rebirth And if you practice what you preach Well all have peace on earth [From: http://www.elyrics.net ]

~ Share the Light Tune: The First Noel Author Unknown On this Winter holiday, let us stop and recall That this season is holy to one and to all. Unto some a Son is born, unto us comes a Sun, And we know, if they don't that all paths are one. Chorus: Share the light, share the light!

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Share the light, share the Light! All paths are one on this holy night! Be it Chanukah or Yule, Christmas time or Solstice night, All celebrate the eternal light. Lighted tree or burning log, Or eight candle flames. All gods are one god, whatever their names. Chorus ~ Silent Night I Traditional Carol words adapted by Ellen Reed Silent night, Solstice Night All is calm, all is bright Nature slumbers in forest and glen Till in Springtime She wakens again Sleeping spirits grow strong! Sleeping spirits grow strong! Silent night, Solstice night Silver moon shining bright Snowfall blankets the slumbering Earth Yule fires welcome the Sun's rebirth Hark, the Light is reborn! Hark, the Light is reborn! Silent night, Solstice night Quiet rest till the Light Turning ever the rolling Wheel Brings the Winter to comfort and heal Rest your spirit in peace! Rest your spirit in peace! ~

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Silent Night II Traditional Carol words adapted by Karen Deal Robinson Silent night, holy night, All is calm, all is bright. Starlight gleams upon the snow. In our hands the candles glow, As we sing of peace. As we sing of peace. Silent night, holy night, We will share love's pure light. Radiant beams from every face Tell our dreams for every place. Hope again is born, Hope again is born. ~ Silver and Gold Words and Music by Johnny Marks adapted by Susan M. Shaw Silver and gold, silver and gold Ev'ryone wishes for silver and gold How do you measure its worth? Just by the pleasure it gives here on earth Silver and gold, silver and gold Mean so much more when I see Silver and gold decorations On ev'ry Yuletide tree ~ Silver Bells Traditional Carol words adapted by Hilda Marshall City sidewalks, busy sidewalks Dressed in holiday style In the air there's a feeling of giving Children laughing, people passing

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Meeting smile after smile And on every street corner you hear... Silver bells, silver bells Yuletide returns to the city Ring-a-ling, hear them ring Chiming the winter away Strings of street lights, even stoplights Blink a bright red and green As the shoppers rush home with their treasures Hear the snow crunch, see the kids bunch Eyes as bright as their dreams And on every street corner you hear Silver bells, silver bells Yuletide returns to the city Ring-a-ling, hear them ring Chiming the winter away ~ Sleigh Ride Words and Music by Leroy Anderson Just hear those sleigh bells jingling Ring-ting-tingling too Come on, it's lovely weather For a sleigh ride together with you. Outside the snow is falling And friends are calling "Yoo-hoo!" Come on, it's lovely weather For a sleigh ride together with you. Giddy-up, giddy-up, giddy-up, let's go Let's look at the show We're riding in a wonderland of snow Giddy-up, giddy-up, giddy-up, it's grand Just holding your hand We're riding along with a song Of a wintry fairyland! Our cheeks are nice and rosy And comfy cozy are we We're snuggled up together

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Like two birds of a feather would be Let's take that road before us And sing a chorus or two Come on, it's lovely weather For a sleigh ride together with you There's a birthday party at the home of Farmer Gray It'll be the perfect ending of a perfect day We'll be singing the songs we love to sing Without a single stop By the fireside where we watch the chestnuts pop (Pop pop pop!) There's a happy feeling nothing in the world can buy When we pass around the coffee and the pumpkin pie It'll nearly be like a picture print by Currier & Ives These wonderful things are the things We remember all through our lives Just hear those sleigh bells jingling Ring-ting-tingling too Come on, it's lovely weather For a sleigh ride together with you. Outside the snow is falling And friends are calling "Yoo-hoo!" Come on, it's lovely weather For a sleigh ride together with you. ~ Solstice Day in the Morning Tune: I Saw Three Ships (Christmas Day in the Morning) words adapted by Willow Firesong Children's laughter in the air The Smell of pine is everywhere With all the love that we can share On Solstice day in the morning Thank the Lord and Lady then For that warm peace we feel within When we gather once again

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On Solstice Day in the Morning The wonder of the Sun's rebirth The child who brings us love and mirth Enhancing all our own souls's worth On Solstice Day in the Morning Yet so many years before We knew the one we still adore The Lady guiding us to shore On Solstice day in the morning With the ancient ones give voice Dance together is our choice Share the mysteries and rejoice On Solstice day in the morning Children's laughter in the air The Smell of pine is everywhere With all the love that we can share On Solstice day in the morning ~ The Holly and the Ivy I Traditional Carol words adapted by Susan M. Shaw The holly and the ivy When they are both full grown Of all the trees that are in the wood The holly bears the crown The rising of the sun And the running of the deer The playing of the merry tunes As we Pagans sing with cheer The holly bears a blossom White as the lily flower The Goddess shares the Solstice Sun Days grow longer with its power The rising of the sun And the running of the deer

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We celebrate with joyous hearts The Wheel of the Year The holly bears a berry As red as any blood The Goddess brings the Solstice Sun To allow our hopes to bud The rising of the sun And the running of the deer These blessed signs of life's renewal Will banish any fear The holly bears a prickle As sharp as any thorn The Goddess lights the Solstice Sun As we welcome the new morn The rising of the sun And the running of the deer The Green Man and the Holly King Are always welcome here The holly bears a bark As bitter as any gall The Goddess gives the Solstice Sun For the wonder of us all The rising of the sun And the running of the deer In perfect love and perfect trust May our hearts be ever clear The holly and the ivy When they are both full grown Of all the trees that are in the wood The holly bears the crown The rising of the sun And the running of the deer The playing of the merry tunes As we Pagans sing with cheer ~

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The Holly and the Ivy II Traditional Carol words adapted by Hilda Marshall The holly and the ivy When they are both full grown Of all the trees that are in the wood The holly bears the crown. Chorus: Oh, the rising of the sun And the running of the deer The shining of the winter stars As the longer days draw near. The holly bears a blossom As white as any flower As our Mother bears the infant Sun In the winter's darkest hour. Chorus The holly bears a berry As red as any blood As our Father bears the hunter's spear for His hungry children's good. Chorus The holly bears a prickle As sharp as any thorn As we shall bear our song of hope On triumphant Yuletide morn. Chorus ~

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The Holly and the Ivy III Tune: Traditional Carol Source Unknown The Holly and the Ivy When they are both full grown Of all the trees that are in the wood The Holly bears the crown Oh, the rising of the Sun and the running of the deer The turning of the winter season Sweet singing all may hear. The Holly bears a berry As red as any blood And the ivy grows upon the rock Evergreen throughout the wood. Oh, the rising of the Sun and the running of the deer The hand upon the harpstring Sweet singing in the choir The Holly bears a blossom White as the lily's flower And the Goddess bears the Sun again To bring us strength and power Oh, the rising of the Sun and the running of the deer The playing of the merry pipes Sweet singing in the shire The Holly bears a prickle As sharp as any thorn And the Goddess in her ivy gown Greets the winter sun each morn Oh, the rising of the Sun and the running of the deer The playing of the merry organ Sweet singing in the choir The Holly ever bears a bark Bitter as any gall And the ivy weaves within our lives Like the Goddess in us all Oh, the rising of the Sun and the running of the deer

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The turning of the winter season Sweet singing all may hear ~ The Holly and the Ivy IV Tune: Traditional Carol Peter Soderberg (Circle Network News, Winter 1981) The holly and the ivy, when they are both full grown, of all the trees that are in the woods the holly bears the crown Chorus: Oh, the rising of the sun and the running of the deer The days are short, the night is long--the Wheel of the Year. O, the Ivy is a Maiden, the Holly is her love, As they entwine at Yuletide, the Lady smiles above. Chorus The holly blooms in glory when solstice-day is near. We burn the Yule log to make the new-born Sun appear. Chorus 'Tis at Yule when the Mother gives birth to coming Spring; In the midst of winter-cold; the new-born Sun, the holly king. Chorus Throughout the land She wanders with the new day-lit god, And in the spring, sweet love is made where'er Her foot has trod. Chorus She is in all our doings, in all we love and fear-How wondrous the ways in which our Lady does appear! Chorus Praise the Queen of Air and Darkness, of Fire and Water: All poetry's our Lady's art, all music sings to Her.

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Chorus All in the holy circle, hand to hand, we pass the blade to invoke the Lady's power, unsheathed by the Ivy Maid. Chorus Now blessed be the Earth at rest beneath our feet As we have hope of rest one day, our Lady for to greet. Chorus Out of darkness shall come dawning, out of winter shall come spring, Out of the toil of striving comes the peace our Lady brings. Chorus ~ The Holly and the Ivy V Tune: Traditional Carol words by Tina Galfo The holly and the ivy, In the forest side by side, As the Lady and the Horned One Together shall abide. Chorus: The leaping of the cauldron And the dancing by its light. The singing of the Solstice carols To celebrate this night. Our Lady is the Goddess Who brings us joy on earth. Let us dance around her circle, The circle of rebirth. Chorus The moon is riding high, Tis the winter of the year.

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But beside the blazing fire Is warm comfort and good cheer. Chorus Tonight is cold and dark But tomorrow we shall see, The coming of the Sun-King In light and majesty. Chorus ~

The Holly and the Ivy VI Traditional Carol Author Unknown Oh the Holly and the ivy when they are both full grown In wintertime when all is dead they bear the living crown Oh the rising of the sun and the running of the deer The days are short, the night is long, the turning of the year Oh the ivy is the maiden, the holly is her love As they entwine at Yuletide the Lady smiles above Oh the rising of the sun and the running of the deer The days are short, the night is long, the turning of the year The Holly blooms in glory when the solstice day is near We burn the yule log to make the new-born Sun appear Oh the rising of the sun and the running of the deer The days are short, the night is long, the turning of the year 'Tis at Yule when the Mother gives birth to the coming Spring In the midst of winter cold; the new-born Sun, Holly King Oh the rising of the sun and the running of the deer The days are short, the night is long, the turning of the year Throughout the land she wanders with the new day-lit god And in the Spring sweet love is made where'ere Her foot has trod

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Oh the rising of the sun and the running of the deer The days are short, the night is long, the turning of the year She is in all our loving, in all we love and fear, How wondrous is the way in which our Lady doth appear Oh the rising of the sun and the running of the deer The days are short, the night is long, the turning of the year Praise the Queen of Air and Earth, of Fire and Water All poetry's our Lady's art, all music sings to her Oh the rising of the sun and the running of the deer The days are short, the night is long, the turning of the year All in the holy Circle, hand to hand we pass the blade To invoke the Lady's power unsheathed by the Ivy Maid Oh the rising of the sun and the running of the deer The days are short, the night is long, the turning of the year Now Blessed be the Earth at rest beneath our feet As we have hope of rest one day, our Lady for to greet Oh the rising of the sun and the running of the deer The days are short, the night is long, the turning of the year Out of Darkness shall come dawning, out of Winter shall come Spring Out of the toil of striving comes the peace our Lady brings ~

The Holly and the Ivy VII Traditional Carol words adapted by Karen Deal Robinson Oh the holly and the ivy, Now they are both full grown, Of all the trees that are in the wood The holly bears the crown. Chorus:

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Oh the rising of the sun, The running of the deer. All merry folk arise and sing To greet the dawning year. Oh the holly bears a berry As red as any blood, And the ivy grows beneath the snows That blanket all the wood. Chorus Oh the holly bears a blossom As white as any flower, And the ivy turns the winter wood To a green and leafy bower. Chorus Oh the holly bears a bark Bitter as any gall, And the ivy leaves are shaped like stars In the skies above us all. Chorus Oh the holly bears a prickle As sharp as any thorn, And the ivy climbs on hills and towers To greet the Yuletide morn. Chorus ~ The Light Has Been Reborn Tune: Good Christian Men Rejoice words by William Baldwin The Light has been reborn Upon this happy morn. Sing O sing in jubilee. Oh, oh, Io Io Evohee! Sing O sing glad tidings. The round of life is new begun:

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Mother - Father - Daughter. Mother - Father - Son. ~ The Solstice Child Tune: Greensleeves (What Child is This?) words adapted by Lunaea Wetherstone What child is this who brings such light that all who see Her grow hopefull? The Solstice candles, this darkest night, rekindle a flame in our soul. This, this is the Solstice child, the Maiden brilliant, the Maiden wild. Come, sisters, to hold Her near, the hope and the light of the New Year. [Variant] What Child is this, who brings such light That all who see Him grow hopeful The Solstice candles, this darkest night Rekindle a flame in our soul This, this is the Solstice Child The Sun God brilliant, the Sun God wild Come, Pagans, to hold Him near The hope and the light of the New Year ~ The Thirteen Days of Solstice Tune: The Twelve Days of Christmas words adapted by Shekhinah Mountainwater On the first day of Solstice the Goddess sent to me, some healing to set me free. On the second day of Solstice the Goddess sent to me, Gifts from my love and some healing to set me free. etc.

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1. Some healing to set me free 2. Gifts from my love 3. A helping dream 4. A branch of evergreen 5. Joyous song! 6. Greetings from my neighbors 7. Magick for the year 8. Fine conversation 9. Nine pearls of wisdom 10. Candles for the lighting 11. Deep contemplation 12. Showers of abundance 13. A grand celebration ~ The Twelve Days of Yuletide Tune: The Twelve Days of Christmas words adapted by Carusone On the first day of Yuletide my true love gave to me, a Circle 'round a Pine Tree. On the second day of Yuletide my true love gave to me, Two pointed Horns and a Circle 'round a Pine Tree. etc. A Circle 'round a Pine Tree Two pointed Horns Three Silver Cups Four Pentagrams Five Magick Rings Six critters Fetching Seven Candles Glowing Eight Fires Blazing Nine Herbs a-Brewing Ten Stones a-Standing Eleven Brooms a-Flying Twelve Witches Dancing ~

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Triple Solstice Goddess Tune: We Three Kings Music by John H. Hopkins words adapted by Lunaea Weatherstone Goddesses of the Solstice are we Bringers of the Star and the Tree Maiden, Mother, Crone uncover Winter's deep mystery Chorus: Oh, time of wisdom, time of light Time of Winter's darkest night Goddess hold me, Love enfold me Open me to Your light Maiden of the darkness, I sing Underworlds of wisdom, I bring Seeking, learning, Kore returning Bearing the light of Spring Chorus Demeter, the slumbering Earth Dreaming of the Daughter's rebirth Candles lighted, world united Knowing our own true worth Chorus Crone of deepest wisdom, I dwell Deep in Time's mysterious well Dreaming, daring, teaching, sharing Hecate's secret spell Chorus ~

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Up On the Housetop Traditional words adapted by Susan M. Shaw Up on the housetop reindeer pause Out jumps good old Santa Claus Down through the chimney with lots of toys All for the little ones' Yuletide joys Chorus: Ho, ho, ho, who wouldn't go? Ho, ho, ho, who wouldn't go? Up on the housetop, click, click, click Down through the chimney with good Saint Nick First comes the stocking of little Nell Oh, dear Santa, fill it well Give her a dolly that laughs and cries One that can open and shut its eyes Look in the stocking of little Bill Oh, just see that glorius fill! Here is a hammer and lots of tacks Whistle and ball and a set of Jacks ~ Wassail Song Traditional Chorus: Here we come a-wassailing among the leaves so green, Here we come a-wandering so fairly to be seen. Now is winter time and strangers travel far and near, And we wish you, send you a happy New Year. Bud and blossom, bud and blossom, bud and bloom and bear, So we may have plenty of cider all next year. Baskets full and barrels full, and bushels, bags and bowls, And the cider running out of every gutter hole. Chorus

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Down here in the muddy lane there sits an old grey fox, A-starving and a-shivering, and licking his old chops. Brings us up a table and set it if you please, And give us hungry wassailers a bit of bread and cheese. Chorus I have a little purse and its made of leather skin, A little silver sixpence, it would line it well within. Now is winter time and strangers travel far and near, And we wish you, send you a happy New Year. Chorus ~ We Three Crones Tune: We Three Kings words adapted by Heartsong We three crones of magic-past are, Bearing gifts, we traverse afar, Fields & fountain, moor & mountain, Following each our star. Chorus: Oh, star of wonder, star of might, Star of radiant beauty bright, Inward leading, still proceeding, Guide us with thy magick light. Gold I bring, the Earth's hidden gleam, Guards our Mem'ry, draws forth our dream; Weary-curing, strong enduring, Holding time's circling stream. Chorus Frankincense I carry with me. Incense aids the spirit to see; Analyzing, wize, up-rising, Sense of the Earth, flow free! Chorus

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Myrrh is mine, it's bitter perfume Lifts new life, a magical broom; Praying, flying, purifying, Away with old lingering gloom. Chorus Glorious gifts of magic (wimmin) we praise, Maiden, Mother, Ancient of Days; Strength, and sense, and energy; whence Return to our sacred ways. Chorus ~ We Three Kings Traditional Carol [Only a slight rewrite of the original] We three kings of Orient are Bearing gifts we traverse afar Field and fountain, moor and mountain Following yonder star Chorus: O star of wonder, star of night Star with royal beauty bright Westward leading, still proceeding Guide us to perfect light Born a king at sunrise so bright Gold I bring to honor the light King forever, ceasing never Light is reborn this night Chorus Frankincense to offer have I Scent of praise for birth that is nigh Joy and praising, all now raising Worship the God most high.

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Chorus Myrrh is mine, the incense of night Gone is he away from our sight Yet in Sorrow, know tomorrow Surely will bring new light Chorus Glorious now behold him arise King and God and Sacrifice Alleluia, Alleluia Earth to Heaven replies Chorus ~ We Wish You a Merry Solstice Tune: We Wish You A Merry Christmas words adapted by Susan M. Shaw We wish you a merry Solstice We wish you a merry Solstice We wish you a merry Solstice And a happy New Year! Chorus: Good tidings we bring To you and your kin We wish you a merry Solstice! And a happy New Year! Our feasting is not so simple Our feasting is not so simple Our feasting is not so simple On this Hollyday! Chorus We've eggnog and punch and wassail We've eggnog and punch and wassail We've eggnog and punch and wassail And hot chocolate too

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Chorus We've breads, cakes and Solstice cookies We've breads, cakes and Solstice cookies We've breads, cakes and Solstice cookies Plus crackers and buns Chorus Now bring us some figgy pudding Now bring us some figgy pudding Now bring us some figgy pudding And bring it right now Chorus We won't go until we get some We won't go until we get some We won't go until we get some So bring some right now Chorus ~ What Child Is This? Tune: Greensleeves words adapted by Anie Burke-Webb What child is this, who rises now from His Mother's womb returning Her children greet most joyously the sight of His face's bright burning Chorus: This, this is the Sun child born The radiant one, the light returned Born unto the world again This child, the promise of summer His growing light returns the warmth that darkness stole from out the Earth To bud the leaves, and blossoms bring

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to signal the Spring's rebirth Chorus ~ What Night is This? Tune: What Child Is This? (Greensleeves) words adapted by Blake TaylorMixon What night is this so calm and cold? We gather round, both young and old, Above the stars are shining bright This is Solstice night. Chorus: This, this night we sing, The seasons turn and treasures bring, This, this the longest night, We welcome back the light. Now Winters turn has just begun A time of peace for everyone Restful dark and stories told, The year is growing old. Chorus ~ Ye Children All of Mother Earth Tune: It Came upon a midnight Clear Author Unknown Ye children all of Mother Earth Join hands and circle around To celebrate the Solstice night When our lost Lord is found Rejoice, the year has begun again The Sun rise above So share the season together now In everlasting love

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~ Yule Fires Tune: Greensleeves (What Child Is This?) words by John G. MacKinnon In ancient days the folk of old When chilled with fright by winter's cold Did kindle up a great Yule fire With leaping flames in its great pyre; So to entice the waning sun To rise again and wider run; It's fiery course across the sky, To warm them so they would not die. So we, whose minds now sense a chill Of anger in the evil will, The human conflict, hate, and strife, Which hold a menace over life; Would kindle up a flame of love That we within our hearts may move, In Yuletide joy, with love embrace And thus abide in peace and grace.

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The Yule Log In Northern Europe, Winter festivities were once considered to be a Feast of the Dead, complete with ceremonies full of spirits, devils, and the haunting presence of the Norse god, Odin, and his night riders. One particularly durable Solstice festival was "Jol" (also known as "Jule" and pronounced "Yule"), a feast celebrated throughout Northern Europe and particularly in Scandinavia to honor Jolnir, another name for Odin. Since Odin was the god of intoxicating drink and ecstasy, as well as the god of death, Yule customs varied greatly from region to region. Odin's sacrificial beer became the specially blessed Christmas ale mentioned in medieval lore, and fresh food and drink were left on tables after Christmas feasts to feed the roaming Yuletide ghosts. Even the bonfires of former ancient times survived in the tradition of the Yule Log, perhaps the most universal of all Christmas symbols. The origins of the Yule Log can be traced back to the Midwinter festivals in which the Norsemen indulged...nights filled with feasting, "drinking Yule" and watching the fire leap around the log burning in the home hearth. The ceremonies and beliefs associated with the Yule
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Log's sacred origins are closely linked to representations of health, fruitfulness and productivity. In England, the Yule was cut and dragged home by oxen or horses as the people walked alongside and sang merry songs. It was often decorated with evergreens and sometimes sprinkled with grain or cider before it was finally set alight. In Yugoslavia, the Yule Log was cut just before dawn on Christmas Eve and carried into the house at twilight. The wood itself was decorated with flowers, colored silks and gold, and then doused with wine and an offering of grain. In an area of France known as Provencal, families would go together to cut the Yule Log, singing as they went along. These songs asked for blessings to be bestowed upon their crops and their flocks. The people of Provencal called their Yule Log the "trefoire" and, with great ceremony, carried the log around the house three times and christened it with wine before it was set ablaze. To all European races, the Yule Log was believed to bring beneficial magic and was kept burning for at least twelve hours and sometimes as long as twelve days, warming both the house and those who resided within. When the fire of the Yule Log was finally quenched, a small fragment of the wood would be saved and used to light the next year's log. It was also believed that as long as the Yule Log burned, the house would be protected from witchcraft. The ashes that remained from the sacred Yule Log were scattered over fields to bring fertility, or cast into wells to purify and sweeten the water. Sometimes, the ashes were used in the creation of various charms...to free cattle from vermin, for example, or to ward off hailstorms. Some sources state that the origin of Yule is associated with an ancient Scandinavian fertility god and that the large, single Log is representative of a phallic idol. Tradition states that this Log was required to burn for twelve days and a different sacrifice to the fertility god had to be offered in the fire on each of those twelve days.

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Pagan History of the Yule Tree Yule Trees aka Christmas trees are a central part of the holiday celebrations around the world. Families gather around them to e xchange gifts, cities put them up in squares and town halls, you'll find them in nearly every hotel and shopping mall... Although there's some debate as to whether the Yule/Xmas tree as it's used today has Pagan origins, it's clear that several non-christian cultures brought evergreen plants indoors at the time of the winter solstice. Dating back centuries before Christ, cultures brought evergreen trees, plants, and leaves into their homes upon the arrival of the winter solstice, which occurs in the northern hemisphere between December 21st and 22nd. Although the specific practices were different in each country and culture, the symbolization was generally the same: to celebrate the return of life at the beginning of winter's decline. Egyptians particularly valued evergreens as a symbol of life's victory over death. They brought green date palm leaves into their homes around the time of the winter solstice. Druid priests in Great Britain also used evergreen plants and mistletoe in pagan ceremonies, and the mistletoe plant was the symbol of the birth of a god. Celtic Druids and Norseman of Scandinavia also used mistletoe in a mysterious ceremony just after the winter solstice. Romans had a public festival called Saturnalia, which lasted one week beginning on December 17th, and included a variety of celebrations around the winter solstice. Curiously, the Roman winter solstice was marked on December 25th on the Julian calendar. These celebrations are thought to have merged with pagan practices of hanging mistletoe and

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the burning of the Yule log. In Britain, the Yule log was originally seen as a magical amulet, and eventually made it into the hand's of Father Christmas. In Italy the Yule log is still burned for the "Festa di Ceppo". In Catalonia, the log is wrapped in a blanket until Christmas Eve, when it's unwrapped and burned for the custom of "fer cagar el tio". And in Serbia, families bring the Yule log (known as a "badnjak") into their homes on Christmas Eve to be burned along with prayers to God to bring happiness, luck, and riches. In the mid 1500's, Germans began using evergreen trees as a symbol of hope for the coming of spring. This practice is likely to have gradually evolved from Pagan rituals of past, and merged with the celebration of Xmas leading to the tree's being shared as it were by other religions.

Pine Cone Wreath Pine cones are excellent material for making art and crafts. They come in lots of shapes and sizes. When collecting, it's important to leave behind the cones that haven't opened. The seeds from these cones should be left so that the animals such as squirrels and chipmunks have something to eat. Find the cones that have the tips spread open. After you bring home the cones and allow them to dry, you need a wreath base to attach the cones to. A pizza box or other sturdy cardboard could be used to make a doughnut shape or any other shape you might like. You can attach the cones with a hot glue gun or tub and tile caulk that comes in tubes. You can add other
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natural materials such as dried flowers, leaves, moss, or stones if you like. Attach a wire loop to the back of the wreath and hang.

Swedish Glogg: One thing is certain: the aroma in the kitchen of mulling glgg is heavenly, and when it is served steaming hot in a mug after a hard day of skiing or shoveling the sidewalk, the body offers thanks. Glgg also makes a good marinade for beef or venison. Here is my tried and true recipe. Swedish Glgg Makes about 1 gallon 1.5 litre bottle of inexpensive dry red wine 1.5 litre bottle of inexpensive American port 1 bottle of inexpensive brandy or aquavit 10 inches of stick cinnamon 1 Tablespoon cardamom seeds 2 dozen whole cloves Peel of one orange 1/2 cup raisins 1 cup blanched almonds 2 cups sugar Garnish with the peel of another orange Notes There is no need to invest in expensive wine or brandy because the spices are going to preempt any
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innate complexity of a fine wine, but don't use anything too cheap. Remember, the sum will be no better than the parts. Do not use an aluminum or copper pot since these metals interact chemically with the wine and brandy and impart a metallic taste. Use stainless steel or porcelain. Cardamom comes in three forms: pods, seeds, and powder. Do not use powder. If you can only find the pods (the look like orange seeds), take about 2 dozen and pop them open to extract the seeds. Cardamom seeds may be hard to find, so you may need to order them from a spice specialist like Penzeys.com. Assembly Pour the red wine and port into a covered stainless steel or porcelain kettle. Add the cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, orange peel, raisins, and almonds. Warm gently, but do not boil. Boiling will burn off the alcohol. Put the sugar in a pan and soak it with half the bottle of brandy. Warm the sugar and brandy slurry over a low flame. The sugar will melt and bubble until it becomes a clear golden syrup of caramelized sugar. If you wish, you can speed up the process a bit and create quite a show by flaming the brandy. Flaming will create a 2 foot high blue flame, so be sure there is nothing above the stove that can catch on fire. Then, stand back and light the brandy. Turn out the kitchen lights and watch it burn! This caramelization is crucial to developing complexity. Add the caramelized sugar to the spiced wine mix. Cover and let it mull for an hour. Just before serving, strain to remove the spices, and add brandy to taste (about 1/2 pint). You can serve it immediately, or let it age for a month or two. If you are going to age it, make sure the bottle is filled as high as possible and

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sealed tight. To serve glgg, warm it gently over a low flame or in a crockpot, and serve it in a mug. Garnish it with a fresh orange peel, twisted over the mug to release the oils. You can easily tailor the recipe to your own tastes by changing the sweetness, potency, or other ingredients. Try brown sugar if you wish. Or Southern Comfort instead of brandy. The orange peel garnish, however, is essential to the fragrance. Drink while seated and give your car keys to a friend.

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