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The Holiday Chicks have been quiet for a bit around here. Everything that has been going on in this world, the country, have put a damper on my celebratory enthusiasm. BDB, master holiday celebrator, never needs a reason to celebrate holidays but lately I have just felt sad. Maybe sad is not the right word. More like apathetic. This year in quarantine has caused me to go within. I’ve ignored the usual holidays and celebrations and become more, I guess, insular. Winter is here. It’s cold. Even for Southeastern North Carolina. It’s time to cuddle up and get cozy. Let us read books, drink tea and plan gardens!!!
I’ve been spending a lot of time with my hubby, my mom and the dogs. They are my bubble or pod. We celebrated the winter holidays together at my home. Just the three of us and four dogs. It was nice. Lots of video calls and watching Christmas movies. Quiet. We have worked on our house and done a lot of projects and stayed put since September. The lack of holiday travel this year was kind of a blessing. Peaceful.
Our little Jack Russel has become a very old man in the past year.
I have been concentrating more on him then thinking about celebrating. But holidays are important. Like the seasons, they mark the passing of time. They remind us that it is good to pause and honor the day, week, season that is happening around you.
Life is complicated and confusing right now. But a little celebrating is good for the soul. I’m going to take my own advice and get celebrating. Holiday Chicks style!!! -MWS
Mabon is a pagan Sabbat celebrating the second harvest of three in the Wheel of the Year, and the Autumnal Equinox. As the Wheel of the Year winds down and moves toward its final harvest (Samhain) and dark half, farmers assess their season's harvest and food supply for the coming winter months. In earlier times, a bountiful season meant there would be enough to go around, for which the farmers gave thanks - usually by having a celebration of food and drink shared with others. This harvest festival of Thanksgiving was first celebrated in early October.
Mabon was a Welsh God, son of an Earth Mother Goddess, however, the name as a Sabbat seems to be a neopagan creation rather than something used in ancient times. It represents the time of equal light and dark, a time of balance and harmony. It is the second point of complete balance on the Wheel of the Year - the first being Ostara representing the Spring Equinox. Mabon is on the cusp of transition into the dark half of the year (in the northern hemisphere).
Typically, it's the time to assess how your year has gone and where it may have deviated from plans made at the beginning of the year. The pandemic we currently find ourselves dealing with has altered many paths, so this assessment will undoubtedly have most of us far off track, but it's still good to take a breather and see where things stand now. Use it as a base point for what needs to be altered to get back on course for the coming months. It is also time to clear out the old, complete projects, and let go of whatever isn't working in our lives. This reflection and cleansing will be helpful in the coming months as plans are made for the new season in the cycle of life.
Symbols of Mabon: The Cornucopia or Horn of Plenty, acorns, gourds, seeds, pinecones, and leaves.
Colors of Mabon: Rich and deep reds, oranges, yellows, dark greens, and browns.
Herbs of Mabon: Chamomile, Mugwort, Rosemary, Sage, and Yarrow.
Foods of Mabon: Apples, beans, dried fruits, grains, nuts, pumpkins, root vegetables, squash, and wine.
Go on a nature walk and gather - leaves, acorns, flowers - signs and representations of the season. Create a sacred space on a table or part of your home using the items you find, or use them to decorate your living space.
Try a new recipe or make a favorite using ingredients from the Second Harvest / this time of year.
Plant bulbs - adding a special intention with each one for something you want to manifest during the upcoming year.
Hold a virtual Mabon Second Harvest Feast with family or friends - each make a dish to bring to the virtual party and share recipes and thanks as you eat together. (please take proper precautions and stay safe if gathering with others to prevent the spread of the coronavirus).
Write in a journal your year's assessment. How did it compare to what you thought would happen, and how can you plan for the new year ahead?
Wishing everyone a happy, safe and blessed Mabon from the Holiday Chicks!
- Barbara 🙃
So we have been a little quiet here at the Holidaychicks.com of late. We have been a bit sidetracked by the world. I was a little under the weather and B is having computer difficulties. The fires out west have me very worried. I have friends in California, Oregon and Washington. They are all safe but the fires are burning around them. Scary stuff.
Also September 11th or Patriot Day was this week. My husband and I lived 6 miles from NYC when the towers fell. We both had front row seats that day. Him, from the windows of his job in Hackensack, N.J., and me standing on the sidewalk on Midland Ave in Kearney, NJ. The fire departments from the entire area flew by heading to the Holland Tunnel. I often wonder about those people. I can still hear the sirens.
It is a day I will never forget. No one should ever forget. There was smoke in the air and a horrible smell for weeks after. Our town, North Arlington became a memorial along Schuyler Ave. There is a clear view of lower Manhattan from there. Its always a time To think about how fragile life is and count my blessings. Then add Covid-19 to the mix and everything else happening, it is quite a roller coaster.
There have been a few holidays this week that we would normally be writing about, but this will be a quiet week. But do remember to celebrate your grandparents and your loved ones every day. Family, friends everyone. They are what it is all about. Love is all we have and all we need. Remember life is fragile-count your blessings.
My grandparents passed away when I was very young so I have always been a little envious of people that had grandparents. The sweet grandmas who cooked special treats for you and spoiled you when you need a little extra pampering. Those were thelucky kids in my book. Grandmothers and Grandfathers are special-there should be a special day where we celebrate them.
Whether you call yours granny, pop pop, nanny, gram or gran, grandma or grampy call them on the phone, send them a letter or an email. I’m sure they would love a letter from you.
Tell them you love them. Thank them for being there for you. Count yourself lucky if you have them to still chat with. Ask them questions and listen to their stories. They are gold, and you will one day be so happy that you stopped and spent those moments loving and being loved by your grandparents. Go on now. Give them a call.
Happy Labor Day from the Holiday Chicks. We did some great celebrating at our house today. We had a Shrimparoo or as we call it here in Southeastern North Carolina, a Low Country Boil.
It was delicious. 2lbs of shrimp, new potatoes, sweet corn on the cob, andouille sausage and Old Bay Seasoning. Put it on a slow boil-deliciousness in a very large stockpot. Oh yeah I forgot the corn bread. Fresh baked with heaps of butter. It was fabulous.
Hubby did the cooking and Mom and my very good friend Valerie joined us. We ate out on the deck and enjoyed the gorgeous (not boiling hot) weather. It was a great day. We finished it off with apple pie a la mode and delicious coffee brewed in my new-old, 1960s model electric percolator. It was a great day and we all decided that this will be a tradition that we will carry on next Labor Day and many after that.
That is what the Holiday Chicks are all about. Finding old traditions and making new ones. Celebrate with your loved ones. Make memories. That is what life is all about. It’s the fun stuff. It’s the love. It’s the celebrations. Happy celebrating from the Holiday Chicks
Hey Everyone the Holiday Chicks want to remind y’all that September is National Better Breakfast Month. What a great way to start out the school year with some healthy nutrition for those growing little geniuses. Breakfast is a great start to the day for everyone. Get your blood sugar even and your brain cranking. Both children and adults will benefit from a healthy breakfast.
Make a smoothie, mash up an avocado on some crusty bread and cut up some crunchy radishes on top, or some steel cut oatmeal (the real stuff not the surgery packs). I love cinnamon with a drizzle of maple syrup. Easy, wholesome and so delicious. Give it a whirl. So celebrate September with a healthy start for yourself and your families every morning. The Holiday Chicks say Bon Apetit. 😋
Celebrate the Senior Citizen in your life today August 21st. I love the Seniors in my life but sometimes they can get forgotten in the rush to keep up with our busy lives. My Mom, 86 and her friends are a big part of my life. I love to spend time with them. They are so funny and have such great stories.
Plus they need to get out. So take them out. Social distancing and masks of course. But take them for a ride in the car, bring a picnic, walk around the mall or grab a bite at a cozy outside cafe. Listen to their stories. Ask them questions. You will never regret taking the time to listen.
World Humanitarian Day celebrates the people who champion and work for humanitarian causes - especially those who became ill or died as a result of their work. Honoring the true heroes today and always - health workers and those providing help to others in need.
Make the world a better place by helping someone else. 🙃
Sending love to B.'s nephew, Thackery Binx - and all the black kitties on National Black Cat Appreciation Day! ♥️
Binx Photo by his mom, Cynthia Dawn.😻❤️