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Ostara is such an uplifting sabbat. I suppose they all are, of course, but Ostara is all about the beginning of new life linked with the Spring Equinox. It’s a time for blossoming, birthing and beginnings. I just love it. I think this sabbat as a special place for me because it it so perfectly made to share with children (not unlike Yule). Here’s a little Ostara trivia for you: did you know if you take a raw egg outside on the equinox and place it wide end down onto the sidewalk it should stand upright for a few moments? True story! Did you also know that pagans have been celebrating Ostara (or some version of it) from as far back as 200 B.C.? Yep.
Last year was my first year celebrating all the sabbats and esabbats. When Ostara came around I was not exactly surprised by it’s uncanny similarities to Easter, but I found myself dwelling on it a bit. I live in a predominately Christian area (as most are in the U.S.) and when I tried to have conversations with “friendly” Christians about remarkable similarities between the two celebrations, or how Ostara had been celebrated long before Easter, I was not met with smiles and wonder. No, it was decidedly a bitter and doubtful reception. Sad as this was, I was not surprised; and lucky for me I write a blog. So I can talk about whatever I want with you all, right?
Ours is a distinctly beautiful tradition. rich in history & lore. I’m going to abstain from turning this into “a history of ostara” or a rant about how our holidays were hijacked by the church. Nope, not going to do that. Let’s keep it positive shall we? Yes, let’s! We know most, though not all, of our readers are fairly new to their witchy ways, and honestly so are we in the grand scope of things. With that in mind, let’s chat about Ostara traditions that we can fold into our modern witchy lives. I think we can break them down into food, crafts & kid stuff and of course, magic.
Mmmmmmm, food. Being the Kitchen Witch I am, most sabbats are spent largely in the kitchen. Imbuing delicious and nourishing meals for my family with my own love & intention is an everyday magic I practice. On a day like Ostara, however, I like to punch it up a bit. I like to start by washing everything washable in the kitchen (maybe even wiping things down with a cloth soaked in moon water if it’s handy), then burn a large bundle of sage to purify the space, followed by burning Palo Santo as a blessing. Again, if you’re a Kitchen Witch, this is your sacred space & should be treated as such.
Once the space is cleansed & blessed, it’s time to get to work. As one might expect, eggs and carrots are associated with the day; but there’s much more. Seeds and sprouts are wonderful additions to your meals on Ostara, as they represent the burgeoning new life all around us. Butter, cream, etc…are all excellent options, too; as they come from mother’s of newly birthed offspring (why do you think it’s called offspring? Because that’s when life blooms!) I wish I had time right now to go cook up a feast, take beautiful photos, and then edit & post them here for you. Sadly, I do not have that kind of time. So I am going to share with you some wonderful finds instead.
Of course there are many, many dishes that are perfect for Ostara’s celebratory vibe. Just cook what feels right to you. However, if you’re stumped for ideas or not usually a cook, just pop over to Pinterest and type in “Ostara recipes” and go nuts!
Crafts & Kid Stuff
This can really be whatever feels like fun for you and your family. You could make Ostara baskets, dye eggs, go feed the wild animals in your area (this is something we do every sabbat and esabbat), garden, make candles, etc… Anything goes, although I would highly recommend working with natural materials as much as possible.
Here’s the good stuff. The special stuff. The stuff that you came here for. Magic. As with all magic, in my opinion, it is more important here to be authentic and intentional that it is to be fancy & pretty. That said, I’m going to use some pretty pictures to illustrate some ideas for you.
These are just some starter ideas for your Ostara. Remember, always trust your instincts & trust your intuition. If you have a great Ostara tradition please share with us. We love learning from other witches.
Lunar Phases by Camille Chew
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Who doesn’t love to take little quizzes, right?
Because these suckers are always fun and sometimes (just sometimes) really do tell us a little about ourselves. Maybe it’s just me, but whenever I take one and I identify with the outcome, I feel…seen. If that makes sense. Maybe less alone in the world? I don’t know…I could be babbling here.
Anywho, we’ve made this little quiz for you to take. Honestly, it’s just a silly thing to do for fun. However, with that being said, we know a lot of you are new to your witchy life; you might just find something here that resonates with you. If so, that’s wonderful! If not, hey, what can we say? At least it was fun, right?
And with that, Witches, let’s get to quizzing! Just click the link below.
I am so excited about today’s post, part two of our study of modern witches. Although the plan was to post these monthly, I fail epically at delayed gratification. So when Alison (oh, yeah, this is Alison everyone!) agreed to let me photograph her yesterday I knew already I’d be posting today. This project is so dear to my heart, and I do believe we are doing some small good here, too. Witches do not deserve the stigma, fear. and doubt (all depending on who’s doing the judging there) that we encounter. We are simply women who are connected to our own strength. Well, that and the myriad personal beliefs that make us each witches in our own way.
I’ll now step off the soapbox and we can focus on Alison.
As it happens, Alison is a dear friend of mine. She is also, one of the more powerful witches I’ve met. I dare you to sit in a room with this woman and tell me you can not feel it radiating from her. She is also, as warm and wise as those eyes would lead you to believe.
Bubble & Brew: What does the word “witch” mean to you?
Alison: “To my own ears and soul, the word “witch” is a recognition of a woman who has embraced her natural powers and all their consequences.”
Bubble & Brew: When did you openly share your witch status?
Alison: ” I’ve never declared myself a witch, as I don’t use social media and rarely seek out others. Those close to me have always been aware, and I’ll proudly tell anyone who inquires.”
Bubble & Brew: How did you know you were a witch?
Alison: ” A woman in a shopping mall called me a witch when I was a young child. My mother chased her off and told me it was a gift, not a curse, to be different.”
Bubble & Brew: What, in your experience, in the biggest misconception about witches as a whole?
Alison: “As a grey witch, I accept mother nature’s cruelty and glory as they are. Witches can have ill intent or radiant generosity – both widely recognized concepts. People have accused me of both, and have been right.”
Bubble & Brew: What is your center, spiritually speaking?
Alison: “The moon has ruled me since day one. Learning to love unconditionally for the first time (my partner), has made me a more centered lunatic.”
Bubble & Brew: Use three words to describe yourself as a person
Alison: ” Sage, savage, and therefore paradoxical.”
Thank you so much, Alison, for being part of this project. We are honored.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve made statements and have alluded to it before, but it was always under the guise of an aesthetic. Which I admit 100% I am drawn to the aesthetic, but there has always been something deeper as well.
Making my declaration on our instagram account seemed safe and small, because our following is still baby new and those that follow us are there because they have interest in what we are doing. It still seems too personal and strange of an announcement to post it on my own personal account as that account is is very much dedicated to body positivity and plus size fashion.
I guess I worry that I will alienate or push away people that are there for another reason. Which makes sense, I have straight up hightailed it out of an account I was considering to follow if it has any mention of Jesus in their bio. I think sometimes religion or spiritually should generally be a personal story that doesn’t need to be advertised to every passer by. Like, I can’t be the only one who violently rolls their eyes at soapbox evangelists or even gets straight up pissed off by them.
But even still, I feel compelled to share my story. But I know there is a right time and a right place to do so and what better place than this safe haven we have created here, dedicated to us finding ourselves and accepting a truth we have long known. I would even like this to act as perhaps the first entry into a series of personal stories of “coming out of the broom closet” as Michelle so eloquently puts it.
I find it hard to believe I am the only person that feels self conscious about admitting myself as a witch. There are so many assumptions that go along with it that I do find I let myself worry about what those assumptions may be from any given person. But what I need to remember and hold dear to myself is how I feel about it.
And I have to admit, it feels right. It feels like I am finally embracing the compass that has been pulsating so hard in this direction, but I would continue to ignore it.
I am not a religious soul. I tried when I was a child, but it never fit. I tried atheism too, but it didn’t sit well either. In the end I settled on my own hodgepodge system of fantasy and imagination that seemed right to me, but I would never tell a soul, worried I’d be made fun of.
What Michelle and I have discussed is a sort of natural call to being a witch. No parameters or guidelines set in place we need to subscribe or adhere to. Just doing what feels natural.
What is natural to me is my belief in energy, that it can manifest in many ways. I have a scientifically based mind and a mystical heart, which can be hard to resolve. I have referred to this as my Mulder/Scully complex, I want to believe, but I also want tangible evidence to solidify my belief. When I let it all settle down to one thing both sides can agree on it’s energy.
I believe the energy, vibes and positive thoughts I put into creating something make it all that much better. I think it yields greater results. A non witch might just think it’s the power of positive thinking or being determined, but I am a little romantic and I as much as I agree upon those sentiments, I think it’s all a little magic in the making.
I think there is magic all around us, and it stands right before us, plan and simple. It shows itself to me in how foods pair together to make them sing, like mushrooms and garlic sauteed in butter. Or how lemon and ginger steeped with honey can make you feel better when you are sick. If you look at it through witch coloured glasses, isn’t that a simple potion for healing? That mix of ingredients placed together in order for you to heal and feel better, how is that not a witches brew?
And so goes my thinking for many everyday things that we glaze over. And it also goes with the silly little magical indulgences many see as normal. I bet you know your zodiac sign!
So here I am, letting the world know, even if it’s not being shouted from the mountain tops, that I am finally accepting this truth of mine. I am actively trying to shake off any shame I may feel when I get into woo woo magical thinking.
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