Saturday, December 31, 2011

Merry Yule!

Welcome back the sun - the Oak King is victorious over the Holly King!
The Holly King
Represents: Withdrawal, lessons, life, rest

Gods: Saturn (Roman agricultural god)

Cronos (Greek god, also known as Father Time)

Father Ice/Grandfather Frost (Russian winter god)

Odin/Wotan (Scandinavian/Teutonic All-Father who rides the sky on an eight-legged horse)
The Tomte (a Norse Land Spirit known for giving gifts to children at this time of year)
Thor (Norse sky god who rides the sky in a chariot drawn by goats)
Color: Black, Red, Green, Gold
Plant: Holly
Bird: Wren
Associated myths: Santa Claus in all his variations, the Green Knight from Arthurian legend, Mordred (who struck down King Arthur), St. John, Corn King, Bran the Blessed

The Oak King
Represents: Growth, Expansion

Gods: Jupiter (Roman god of light and sky)

Janus (Roman god of planting, marriage, birth, and other types of beginnings)
Dagda (Irish-Celtic god of the earth)
Frey (Norse fertility god)
Pan (Greek god of fertility, unbridled male sexuality and carnal desire)
Colors: Red, green, yellow, purple
Plant: Oak, mistletoe
Bird: Robin
Associated myths: Robin Hood, King Arthur, Gawain (when he meets the Green Knight), Jesus, Balder, Green Man

OK, I know this post is way late, but I have been working like crazy since Black Friday (the retail one, not a Wiccan sabbat).  Here is how I celebrated - and my resolution is to prepare for Sabbats EARLY this year!
Music: All Things Pagan radio at
Merriment: Yule Goose and Wassail (I actually cooked a chicken, goose being a scarce commodity at my grocery store).
Yule Goose
1 whole goose (or fowl of choice)
1 sweet onion, peeled and quartered
2 lemons, 1 quartered, 1 for zest and juice
1/4 c. olive oil
1/2 tsp sage
1/4 tsp thyme
1/4 tsp salt
lemon pepper
Preheat oven to 350. Rinse bird and pat dry. Prick skin but not meat. Place quartered onion and lemon inside bird.  Zest remaining lemon into small bowl, then juice it into same bowl.  Add olive oil, sage, thyme and salt.  Stir and brush onto bird, sprinkle with lemon pepper.  Place on rack in roasting pan and cook for 15-20 minutes per pound, basting every half hour.  Remove from oven, discard onion and lemon, let rest for 15 minutes before carving.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours, 15 minutes
·        1 Gallon apple cider
·        2 C. cranberry juice
·        1/2 C honey
·        1/2 C sugar
·        2 oranges
·        Whole cloves
·        1 apple, peeled and diced
·        Allspice
·        Ginger
·        Nutmeg
·        3 cinnamon sticks (or 3 Tbs. ground cinnamon)
·        1/2 C - 1 C brandy (optional)

Preparation: Set your crockpot to its lower setting, and pour apple cider, cranberry juice, honey and sugar in, mixing carefully. As it heats up, stir so that the honey and sugar dissolve. Stud the oranges with the cloves, and place in the pot (they'll float). Add the diced apple. Add allspice, ginger and nutmeg to taste - usually a couple of tablespoons of each is plenty. Finally, snap the cinnamon sticks in half and add those as well.  Cover your pot and allow to simmer 2 - 4 hours on low heat. About half an hour prior to serving, add the brandy if you choose to use it.
Yule bonfire (I just learned that you can put dryer lint in egg carton cups, place it under your kindling, and get a fire started pretty easily!)

Prayer I wrote for my meditation/ritual
To Winter
Moonlight, starlight, glittering snow
Candles shine as darkness grows.
Cold and lonely, winter rules
In this time we know as Yule.
Salamanders of fire, we call on thee,
Your warmth and light guide us
So mote it be!

Hope your celebration was wonderful and your winter is merry and bright!  Happy New Year and Blessed Be!

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