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Beltane Celebration: Get Out In Nature And Don’t...

Despite the dark gloomy clouds and bouts of torrential rain we had in most parts of the UK we still managed to have a wonderful Beltane weekend. Beltane is the Celtic festival of fire and light and it is celebrated on April 30th – May 1st.

It’s a wonderful time of year. The days are lengthening, flowers and plants are starting to blossom and bloom, butterflies and bees are making an appearance in the garden and everyone has a slight spring in their step.

One of the best ways to celebrate this time of year is to get outside in nature. Whether it’s a walk around the block, a 10 mile hike, a visit to your local park or even just pottering around in your garden, make the effort to get out doors. This weekend I stayed away from my computer and spent as much time as I could (rain permitting) in the garden.

We sowed some seeds, Rocket (Arugula) which is a wonderful peppery salad leaf and some Genovese Basil. My mouth is already watering in anticipation of a Mozzarella, Tomato and Basil Salad. The pots are all lined up in our little greenhouse and we hope to see some spouting soon.

Last year we bought some herbs from our local farmers market and they have really taken off. I have really enjoyed being able to cook with fresh Sage, Rosemary, Lemon Thyme and Tarragon. This year we decided to add a few more herbs to our garden; Coriander, Curly Parsley and Apple Mint. Although we had problems previously growing tomatoes and chillies we thought we’d have a go at some sugar snap peas. Our not so very green fingers are crossed!

Beltane is also a very special time for working with Fairies. There are many things you can do to honour them and show your commitment to nature:

• Look into recycling schemes.
• Support animal and environmental charities.
• Buy more organic produce.
• If you’re in a park or on a hike and you see some litter then (if it isn’t too disgusting) pick it up and dispose of it properly.
• Give away unwanted clothing and goods to charity.
• Use gentler more natural cleaners in the home instead of harsh scary chemicals.

Perhaps one of the easiest ways to honour the Fairies and to celebrate this wonderful time of year is to get off the couch, get away from the computer or television and go outside! You may also want to leave a little treat for Nature’s Angels as a thank you for all their hard work.

For the Garden Fairies I like to put out seeds (sunflower and pumpkin are good) as well as chopped fruit (apples, pears, plums, blackberries and blueberries). For my House Fairy I like to leave out some milk and honey or mead as well as something sweet like organic chocolate, cookies or cake. If you have an animal companion please make sure they can’t get at any Fairy Treats you leave out, chocolate is toxic to many animals but especially to dogs.

The leaving of a gift is a lovely way to acknowledge the Fairies and thank them for their continual help in watching over your garden and plants, protecting your home and animal companions, and to celebrate the beauty and abundance of nature. Breathe some fresh air, listen to the birds and don’t forget the Fairies!

Fairy and Violets

Sage, Lemon Thyme, Rosemary and Tarragon

The Kent Coast: Fresh Sea Food By The Sea Side....

It’s been a long difficult winter for us here in the UK and this weekend when the sun finally came out many people like myself took advantage and headed for the sea side. The English sea side is truly an amazing place; pebbly beaches, penny arcades, ‘Mr Whippy’ ice cream cones and of course fish, chips and mushy peas.

One of the most wonderful stretches of coast line is the Kent coast. Although I haven’t had the opportunity to explore all of it, I do enjoy the walk from Herne Bay down to Whitstable. Just make sure to cover up with sun screen and a hat – the breeze coming in off the water easily takes away the heat of the sun and you don’t realize until too late that you are burning. It’s hard to believe the English sun can be so strong!

My walk began at Herne Bay, which has a pier full of penny arcades – a great place to get rid of a few 1p and 2p coins and maybe even win a prize! There are also plenty of fish and chip shops. Just the thought of a portion of chips wrapped in paper and generously covered with salt and vinegar is enough to get my mouth watering. Chips are actually pretty healthy (ok minus the generous sprinkling of salt) and they are a good way to fuel up for the long but scenic walk to Whitstable.

A pretty little town, Whitstable has a fantastic fish market where you can get all sorts of fresh fish and sea food. The market sells little tubs of cockles, winkles, prawns, crab claws and roll mops which you can tuck into right away. You can also buy freshly grilled mackerel in a whole wheat roll which is delicious, especially with the addition of tomato butter. Then of course there are the oysters. Served on paper plates with ice and fresh lemon wedges, you can pay a little bit extra to have them opened on the spot (I definitely recommend this option). Honestly I was never very sure about oysters, but once I tried them on the beach accompanied by a pint of local ale (raspberry wheat beer), I was well and truly hooked!

A big part of being a kitchen witch is making sure to take time and reconnect with nature on a daily basis. Usually I will go for a walk or potter around in my garden but when I get the chance, I love my trips to the sea side. The cool salty sea breeze, rolling waves and wide open spaces refresh and energize me. It’s a real joy to see excited dogs running into the water, kids with pails and shovels digging up treasure and sea gulls swooping and diving. Despite this abundance of activity the sea side is a great place to relax, unwind and really connect with nature.

For those of you in the UK I urge you to make time to appreciate the wonderful coast lines we have in this country – our sea side truly is a magical place. For those of you planning a trip to the UK, make sure you include a trip to the sea side, you won’t regret it!

Whitstable Oysters and Crab Claws

Whitstable Kent Beach Huts

How Will You Celebrate The Year Of The Tiger?...

Wild Tigers are now one of the most threatened species on the planet. This makes celebrating the Chinese New Year, which is the Year of the Tiger, an opportunity to increase our awareness of this beautiful animal and its plight. While this post may seem a departure from previous posts it is still very much a part of Kitchen Witchery and something that is dear to my heart.

A good friend of mine wrote the following article which I want to share with you. Lets celebrate the Chinese New year by finding ways to help the Wild Tigers before it is too late.

Imbolc: The Maiden Returns....

The beginning of February, in the Northern Hemisphere, is a time to celebrate the ancient Celtic festival of Imbolc. We are just beginning to feel the first stirrings of Spring. The days are lengthening, there are signs of growth in the earth and the birds seem to sing more loudly and cheerfully. Brigid the Goddess of Spring has returned and has brought with her the sun, whose rays are warming the earth, bringing it back to life after the cold dark days of winter.

Food wise Imbolc is linked with milk, specifically ewes milk as it’s around this time of year that they begin lactating. For a special Imbolc supper you could have a cheese plate with a hearty salad and some crusty bread on the side. Any type of cheese will do, it doesn’t have to be sheep’s cheese if that isn’t to your liking. Just make sure that it’s natural cheese, nothing coloured or artificial.

As this time of year is about celebrating the return of fertility to the Earth, make time to connect with nature. Go for walks and get out in your garden. It may be too early to start sowing seeds outdoors but you can certainly plant bulbs; crocus, daffodils and tulips are a beautiful addition to any garden. If you don’t have access to a garden, consider buying a house plant. Just make sure that if you share your home with an animal companion the plants aren’t harmful or toxic to them.

Another way to celebrate is to create an altar for your home or garden. I love altars because they give me a special place where I can focus and meditate on my intentions for the upcoming days, weeks or months. They also keep me mindful about the earth, help strengthen my connection to her seasons and remind me of my own unique place in the world.

There really are no hard and fast rules when creating an altar. Have fun and be creative. For Imbolc I tend to use colours that remind me of the lengthening days. I also like to include food which I leave out for the Fairies and birds afterwards. Apples are always a favourite and I make sure I only buy organic ones. I also buy something for my garden and this year I bought some grape hyacinths which I can’t wait to plant.

Over the coming weeks, find ways to honour the earth and reconnect with nature. Whatever you choose to do enjoy yourself, have fun and remember that Spring is on her way!

For my Indoor Imbolc Altar I used;

  • A bright yellow scarf that belonged to my grandmother (she always made me happy).
  • A Goddess figurine my sister made for me many years ago (thanks sis!).
  • A white candle.
  • 3 lemon and rose Turkish delights (my grandmother loved them but they also seem to be a particular favourite of the Fairies)
  • A glass of organic milk with honey, cinnamon and nutmeg (once again for the Fairies)
  • My newly purchased Grape Hyacinths.
Imbolc Altar

Imbolc Altar

Garden Offerings

Garden Offerings

Welcome to my Kitchen Witchery Blog! Recipes, Hous...

Hello everyone and thank you for taking the time to check out my new blog.

It is my pleasure to share with you some of my favourite recipes and household tips. Let’s have fun and bring the sacred into our everyday tasks! Yes  – even cooking and cleaning can be fun!

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