The holiday season is almost upon us and for many it is not as joyful as it should be. I was blessed with a family that pretty much got on with one another so have nothing but great memories of Christmas, but not everyone is as Walton-esque as we were.
With that in mind I thought I'd share some magickal tips with you all to keep things chilled out over the season, and I thought I'd do it now so those of you who celebrate Thanksgiving can put these in place now and relax a bit.
|My Yuletide wreath from 2013, complete with cinnamon|
- The guest you don't get on with. Whenever there are family gatherings there is often that one person who you have to invite but you just don't get on with. To ward off the negativity they (or you) bring hang a garlic plait in the kitchen (the heart of the home) or on the front door. For extra oomph you can weave a ribbon through it, blue for healing or yellow for friendship, or you could incorporate other herbs such as calming lavender into the plait. You can also use this garlic in the meal so everyone takes on some of this magick.
- Calm first impression. Make sure the entrance to your home is neat and tidy. There is nothing worse than struggling to get through a partially-opened door because there are shoes, toys and junk behind it. Even if it is for one day only (though this should be an everyday no-brainer) make sure the hallway is clutter-free. Hanging little bells as a wind chime or on the door will help cleanse the air of negativity every time they jingle, and if you have room pictures or little statues of cherubs or angels will not only set a festive theme but also spread a sense of peace and goodwill.
- Seating arrangements. Not always easy in modern houses, but having the table in the north east corner of your home can lead to feisty, spiky energy, which is exactly what you want to avoid when you're all sat together. Instead try the south west which promotes a sense of security, comfort and a loving family feeling.
- Scents and sensibility. There is nothing like the smell of gorgeous home-cooked food, but you can use aromatherapy to enhance the mood. Lavender is calming, as I mentioned before, and also encourages tolerance. If people have been having a hard time consider the uplifting and anti-depressant qualities of orange - bring on the satsumas! Traditionally festive scents like cinnamon, star anise, clove, frankincense, nutmeg, myrrh, pine and orange all work to boost positivity, love and healing so either use the real thing in decorations or use pure essential oils to work some magick. Just one note, if you're using incense make sure it is made of the real thing and not just fake scented powder else you won't get the benefits.
- Food and drink. There are so many traditions in every family about what to eat for these holidays, and I'm not about to go around messing with that. Thankfully cranberries symbolise health and well-being, so use them for decorations and don't forget the cranberry sauce to go with the turkey. This is the one time I insist on sitting around the table - even though there's only two of us - because there is something unifying about platters of food and everybody sharing. However do not stress yourself out over the food. If there is a big crowd then get everyone to bring a dish, and remember at the end of the day it is just a roast dinner and if something does go wrong just laugh about it. Try to keep an eye on alcohol consumption too; if there is someone who always over-indulges consider making it clear booze will be served after a certain time or - controversial - make it an alcohol-free holiday. It won't kill you, and you will remember all the little details.
- Be in the moment. It is just one day and you won't get it back so enjoy it. Make a conscious effort not to slip back into old patterns of behaviour. An example of this would be going back to your parents house and automatically bickering with your siblings like you were a little kid again, or failing to realise your children/parent/relative is their own person and you don't need your opinion on their life unless they specifically ask you. It is just a few hours; don't let the past ruin the day and influence the future.
- In case of emergencies! Sometimes even with the best plans we can get stressed. I swear by Rescue Remedy, a natural product made from flower essences. You can either take a few drops on the tongue for instant calming, put a little in water and sip it through the day to keep your cool, or you can get it as a lozenge and just suck one when you need to - this also has the advantage that with a sweet in your mouth it is easier to bite your tongue rather than say something to make matters worse! You could also put a few drops of lavender on a tissue or handkerchief and inhale if you feel stressed. Finally if the weather permits just nip outside and escape the excitable energy for a moment; a few deep breaths of cooler, natural energy sorts you out whether you believe in magick or not.
|My frankincense scented candle|
Until next time everyone,
Blessed be )0(