As well as celebrating the festival of chocolate, I mean Easter, we also celebrate Ostara. This is the festival that falls over the Equinox, also known as the beginning of spring. This is the time when day and night are equal; we have reached the tipping point of the year and can rejoice knowing that warmer weather and greener times are on their way.
This year, what with being laid low by illness, we decided to keep our celebrations over the weekend low key. In fact we ‘celebrated’ by sorting out our house after a couple of weeks of some necessary neglect. It felt great to bring order to our home once more, cleaning away clutter, reorganising rooms and even buying new furniture! Ostara celebrates the coming of spring and our internal clocks tell us that renewal is top priority.
On Monday (still part of Ostara as it covers a 3 day span) we celebrated this festival with friends. We honoured the nature of this festival with two elements, growing and food. First we made egg box planters, this is something Huwyl and I have done for about 3 or 4 years now, literally since he could stand, and I love it. If you would like to try here is what you need:
Cardboard egg boxes
Soil (and smaller containers to avoid big indoor spills can be a boon)
A spray bottle filled with water
All very straightforward ingredients that can be easily put together. Basically you fill the box with soil, sprinkle some seeds on the top and then cover them with a sprinkle of soil. Moisten with water and voila! It is a good idea to note which seeds you planted where on the lid as all seedlings look a bit alike in the early stages. Keep the soil moist by spraying a couple of times a day, as the seeds get bigger you can put the whole box on a tray and put water underneath it, allowing the cardboard to soak up the water and keep the soil moist.
The chocolate nests are also a classic, we used this recipe with lovely mini eggs sitting happily on top. The children really enjoyed putting these together and they enjoyed eating them even more! We had to put them in the freezer to set as they literally couldn’t wait!
The day went swimmingly, the children played and created with equal vigour and it was a pleasure to watch their enjoyment, fun and kindness to one another.
Everywhere I look at the moment I see the spirit of growth and change, of Ostara, making herself felt. From the itchy urge to cleanse and purge, to the moment in the sun where we stop and marvel at the sheer wonder of it all. Just as the season begins to renew herself, so we are given the same opportunity.
Though I know that reliably warm days and a garden full of abundance are still some way off, it feels now to be a possibility. The Goddess of Spring, Ostara, has shaken herself free of the Holly King’s hold and begins to move across the land with all the force of a birthing mother bringing her loving creation into the world. Like all mothers her moods can be fickle and stormy but, ultimately, she will nurture us and deliver us safely into the arms of Summer.
Blessed Be to one and all, a new season has begun!