The great thing about celebrating the Sabbats of the Wheel of the Year is that I jive much more fluidly with the seasonal calendar than I do the Julian one. The bad thing about it is that time seems to fly by within it just as quickly as it does in the traditional calendar!
The end of Mabon is upon us, gentle readers, and I wanted to take a minute to look back on what I’ve learned this season – or more accurately, started to learn. My Mabon Sabbat celebration was a great way to celebrate abundance and the Life aspect of the Life/Death/Rebirth cycle, but I feel like I just scratched the surface of the idea of dark/light balance with my study of the Dark Mother, and that while the migration of my monarchs was a very good visual representation of things moving on or my letting things go, I still have a lot of work to do in those areas.
In the next season, Samhain, I’d like to continue the work I started on leaving the past behind and respecting the dark/light balance by tracking my physical, mental, and spiritual well-being in my journals and planners.
To transition gently into the next turn of the Wheel, I’d like to close out Mabon by focusing today on abundance and gratitude – recognizing it, showing it, and planning ahead to continue celebrating it as part of every season.
ABUNDANCE: A big part of having abundance is to store it away so you’re sure you and yours will have plenty to survive on during the hard months to come, but this season of plenty is also about coming together and sharing the harvest. My favorite way to share my abundance is by doling out the bounty of my kitchen pantry and employing the skill of my study and the work of my hands to make it into something magical. I honestly can’t think of a more natural-feeling way for me to share my wealth of goods and gifts than through baking or crafting for others, and I think that’s the lynchpin that makes me embrace kitchen and hearth witchery as my main areas of practice, maybe even over green witchery.
My dad’s and sister-in-law’s current favorite treat from my kitchen is this Awesome Country Apple Fritter Bread from Kim at The Baking Chocolatess. This bread is literally heavy with cinnamon apple goodness very reminiscent of apple pie filling, layered throughout a sweet white bread that might as well be cake. It definitely isn’t DASH compliant, but damn, is it good! I brought a spare loaf of this magic to a family birthday party and got a big kick out of the joy it brought to my kinfolk – especially when my SIL asked for the recipe.
GRATITUDE: Hand in hand with having abundance comes being grateful for it – knowing that you haven’t always and won’t always be as full-up as you are and being damn thankful that, for this year, at least, you are most fortunate. I’m showing my gratitude to the Universe and the Powers that Be this year by counting my many blessings in my Gratitude Journal (using the prompts I made for myself, in case you’re interested as well). I found Patti Wigington’s Gratitude Ritual on Thoughtco and I really like it as a one-off kind of meditation, but I find myself more drawn to a daily gratitude exercise where one notes something to give thanks for every day during their preferred season. When my son was small, the three of us did this as a family, adding a leaf on which we wrote our thanks to a big paper tree. I scrapbooked the leaves and still like browsing through them yearly to see how his gratitude and ours has grown over time.
When it comes to showing gratitude to others, again, I can’t think of a better way for me to do so than to bake or make for them. I made several Monarch Car Protection Sachets for friends (half finished in this photo), and this Carrot Apple Zucchini Bread from Trish at Mom On Timeout is moist, cinnamon-y, and resplendent (yes, RESPLENDENT!) with the bounty of the season, as the name belies. In one weekend, I baked 12 loaves of this loveliness and played the part of the Bread Fairy (as I often do), “anonymously” delivering loaves to the porches of my neighbors and all of my momfriends in town who I may not be in the closest touch with since our kids have gotten older, but who I still love to let know that they are valued and appreciated. (“Anonymously” is in quotes because everybody in town knows damn well who the Bread Fairy is after 10 years of me doing this, but it’s still fun to play!) Both of these loaded quick breads are perfect for doubling or tripling so you can make a bunch and share with the folks who need just a little recognition for all the everyday magic they do in your life.
So – that’s a wrap on Mabon for me, folks. How do you share your abundance or show your gratitude when the feeling moves you? Sound off in the comments or join the conversation in the Half-Assed Circle on Facebook – I would love to hear from you!
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