• Monthly Columns

    Notes from the Apothecary

    Notes from the Apothecary Special: Five Antiviral Plants to Eat at Home     *Disclaimer: Eating any amount of plants and herbs cannot protect you entirely from catching any sort of illness. Healthy eating is great and boosts your immune system but should complement, not replace, good hygiene, prescribed medication, and safe social distancing measures where appropriate. Take a holistic approach to your well-being and always follow guidelines from medical practitioners and qualified experts. Stay safe!   Even prior to the current pandemic, there has been a lot of scientific research into what sort of plants might have significant antiviral properties. Antiviral plants are plants which help boost your body’s…

  • Monthly Columns

    Celebrating the Old Ways in New Times

    Celebrating the Old Ways in New Times for June 2020   (pic by AmberAvalona on pixabay.com)   Bright Blessings! Believe it or not, it will be Summer Solstice before we know it! What warmer weather we are having that at this time a month ago! Many of us will be merrily working away at our gardens! For me, having pulled a raised bed, I won’t be planting as much- and I learned a very ugly truth meaning I might not plant hardly anything at all. I still live in the condos- truthfully, we may be stuck here as long as another year- if not longer. Long boring story- sigh. Normally,…

  • Monthly Columns

    Gael Song Second Edition

    The Hidden Gem of Solitude   With most folks staying at home during this pandemic, I thought an article about solitude might be helpful. I’ve lived a contemplative life for twenty years now, mostly by myself, writing, meditating, in complete silence 90% of every day. Besides three mornings of volunteer work a week, my life is very, very quiet. When my last daughter went off to college twenty years ago, I chafed against the isolation but within a very few months, I began to cherish it and still do. What I discovered fairly quickly is that silence opens the doorway to the Otherworld. In general, beings on the other side…

  • Monthly Columns

    The Bee – An Excerpt From Pagan Portals: Celtic Witchcraft by Mabh Savage

    The following includes an excerpt from Pagan Portals: Celtic Witchcraft by Mabh Savage   An animal that has had many sacred associations throughout the aeons, yet is mentioned all too infrequently in Celtic texts, is the bee. We know the Celts ate honey and drank mead, so they must have had skill with bees, yet it is rarely written of by the scholars of the middle ages who gave us most of the Celtic literature we now refer to. The bee is a dangerous animal that simply needs to be respected. Yes, a bee can sting you and undoubtedly it will hurt. It can even kill, if you are sensitive…

  • Monthly Columns

    Things to do with the Kids this Spring Equinox

      The Spring Equinox is also called the Vernal Equinox and is when day and night are roughly equal. It’s the halfway point between the winter solstice and the summer solstice. After the Spring equinox, the light increases a little every day, although the way up to the longest day of the summer solstice. In the Northern hemisphere, the spring equinox is on Thursday the 19th and Friday the 20th March, depending on location. In the Southern hemisphere, this is the autumnal equinox. The spring equinox for the Southern hemisphere will be on Tuesday 22nd September. The Spring Equinox is a great time to get kids involved with pagan activities,…

  • Reviews & Interviews

    Book Review – The Sacred Herbs of Spring: Magical, Healing, and Edible Plants to Celebrate Beltaine by Ellen Evert Hopman

    Book Review The Sacred Herbs of Spring Magical, Healing, and Edible Plants to Celebrate Beltaine by Ellen Evert Hopman 376 Pages ….The month of May is a time of great spiritual power for those who are attuned to natural cycles. In the northern hemisphere the sap is rising in the trees and medicinally beneficial new leaves and flowers are reappearing. For Druids, Witches, and other followers of the Nature Religions, May is the time to celebrate love, fertility and the new growth of summer, and most of this book is dedicated to these magical aspects of the May Day festival…. (Introduction) Call it wishful thinking or the reality that we…

  • Reviews & Interviews

    Book Review – Herbs of the Southern Shaman by Steve Andrews

    Book Review Herbs of the Southern Shaman by Steve Andrews 152 Pages Herbs of the Southern Shaman is Steve Andrew’s follow-up to Herbs of the Northern Shaman and makes an excellent companion to it. This is a well-researched overview guide to entheogenic plants which grow in the Southern Hemisphere. It is a small book, 152 pages, that contains a wealth of information about more than 50 “teacher” plants we commonly associate with altered consciousness, like peyote and ayahuasca, and those we are more likely to find in the kitchen, like nutmeg. There is a bit of overlap with the Herbs of the Northern Shaman that Andrews references, as plants like…

  • Monthly Columns

    Book Excerpt – The Sacred Herbs of Spring Magical, Healing, and Edible Plants to Celebrate Beltaine by Ellen Evert Hopman

      Introduction The month of May is a time of great spiritual power for those who are attuned to natural cycles. In the northern hemisphere the sap is rising in the trees and medicinally beneficial new leaves and flowers are reappearing. For Druids, Witches, and other followers of the Nature Religions, May is the time to celebrate love, fertility and the new growth of summer, and most of this book is dedicated to these magical aspects of the May Day festival. The May Pole The May Pole is a well-known British tradition associated with May Day. The pole was covered all over with flowers and greens, then bound with ribbons…

  • Reviews & Interviews

    Book Review – The Healing Plants of the Celtic Druids by Angela Paine

    Book ReviewThe Healing Plants of the Celtic Druidsby Angela Paine 304 Pages   I have to be honest; this is one of those books that I found so enjoyable it was hard to figure out what to include in the review. The Healing Plants of the Celtic Druids is a book that I feel should be included in a witch’s collection of books. Mx. Paine explains in chapter 1, why she wrote this book. In this chapter, she also teaches a little bit about the ancient Celtic world, including mining, farming, trade, places of worship, the role of the Druids in ancient Celtic Britain, and ancient Celtic medicine. Mx. Paine…

  • Monthly Columns

    Notes from the Apothecary

    Notes from the Apothecary: Cow Parsley     Anthriscus Sylvestris or cow parsley is a member of the Apiaceae family, just like the carrot and hemlock. It has tall, hollow stems topped with a flurry of delicate white flowers. In Europe it is a common hedgerow plant, and a familiar sight to walkers and foragers. It’s one of the first flowers to appear by the roadside in spring. With many common names including the grand “Queen Anne’s Lace” and the morbid “Mother Die”, this plant is a piece of living history and an intriguing part of the British countryside.   The Kitchen Garden Encouraging cow parsley into the garden would…