My Week on Wednesday and Imbolc

Imbolc // Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers Hello, and welcome to My Week on Wednesday. This week we’re going to talk a little bit about Imbolc, which takes place on either the first or second day of February, and marks the halfway point between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox.

Imbolc is an old Irish word which translates to “in the belly” and is the time of the year when you begin to anticipate springtime. The days are longer, and while here in Upstate New York, it seems like we are still firmly in the grip of winter, there are still signs of spring to be seen. Look for buds swelling with the promise of new life, listen for the change in the birdsong, prepare for syrup season. Further south, and in much of Western Europe, the first signs of spring are more obvious; lambs are born, flowers bloom, and it is time to prepare the fields for planting.

Although Imbolc is generally considered to be a Wiccan or Pagan holiday, anyone with an eye to the turning of the year wheel, or an appreciation of the seasons can enjoy it.

Christians celebrate Candlemas at this time. Candlemas marks Jesus’ presentation at the temple, and the completion of Mary’s purification ritual after the birth of her son at Christmastime.

It is also the feast day of St. Brigid, who was first known as a maiden aspect of the Triple Goddess; a fire and fertility goddess, who then became one of Ireland’s most popular saints. It is said that she visits homes on Imbolc-eve, and that you should leave bread out for her.

Imbolc / Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

In America, we have Groundhog Day, though weather predicting has always been a part of Imbolc with people watching to see of badgers and snakes came out of their dens.

How to Celebrate Imbolc

With wine, of course.

No, really, we like to get outdoors to really enjoy those first signs of spring. Build a snowman, or maybe make some Ice Marbles if it’s cold. And then come inside for Spiced Wine for Imbolc. With warm spices and bright fruit, it is the perfect symbol for the returning of summer and sunshine.

Spiced Wine | Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Making Cheese and Other Dairy Products

Traditionally, with the birth of the lambs, there was milk again. So dairy is a big part of Imbolc.

Homemade 30 Minute Mozzarella Cheese Recipe from Common Sense Homesteading

How to Make Feta Cheese in Your Kitchen from The Homestead Lady

How to Make Quark Cheese from Northern Homestead

Goat Milk Ricotta from Homespun Seasonal Living

How to Make Butter from ImaginAcres

Easy-Peasy Yogurt from Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Buttermilk: Reviving a Lost Superfood from The Elliot Homestead — Did you know, I love buttermilk!

How to Make Cultured Buttermilk and Sour Cream from The Prairie Homestead

Eating Dairy Products

This is the perfect time to whip up a sweet dairy treat!

Real Ice Cream from Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Maple Custard Cups from Richly Rooted

Chai Spiced Whey Rice Pudding from Homespun Seasonal Living — Suppose you just finished making some ricotta and have whey leftover… then this pudding is for you!

Turkish Rice Pudding from Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Rice Pudding Cover new

Cleaning, Simplifying, and Removing Clutter

Imbolc is a time of purification, so it is the perfect time for spring cleaning. This is a great time to dust the things that usually get skipped, wash windows, and do a deep clean in the kitchen. Organize closets and that scary place under the bed! Donate things that you no longer need. It is also a time to clean up your self. Maybe you have a habit you’ve been wanting to break, or a hobby you’d like to start. Now is a great time for that!

These are some great ways to get ideas to get you started with the simplifying and decluttering process!

Simplifying Clutter Distraction from Home & Farm Sense

Our Journey to Simple Living from Keeper of the Home

Take Care of Wild Animals

Before the advent of really good food preservation techniques, and later the supermarket, the end of winter could be a very lean time for people. It still can be for wild animals. Even if you don’t feed the birds year-round, you might set up a bird feeder to help them get through to spring.

Frozen Bird Feeders from Hobby Farms

How to Create Birdseed Ornaments from Garden Delights

Feeding Wild Birds and Homemade Suet from Better Hens and Gardens

Cardinal in a March Cherry Tree // Thousand Words Thursday // Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Plan Your Garden

Imbolc is an excellent time to start planning your garden. Maybe you could do it while you sip some of that Spiced Wine.

7 Steps for Planning a Vegetable Garden from Lady Lee’s Home

8 Things You Can Do Now to Have a Great Spring Garden from SchneiderPeeps

The Ultimate Garden Planning Resource Round-Up from The Free Range Life

Start Your Garden

Yes! Even in the winter you can get your garden started! Let Jess from The 104 Homestead tell you all about winter sowing! This is actually one of the most perfect ways I can think of to celebrate Imbolc.

Winter Seed Sowing from The 104 Homestead

Winter Sowing Part 2: Zone Guides and FAQ from The 104 Homestead


More Ideas for Celebrating Imbolc

8 Ideas for a Family Friendly Imbolc from The Blasphemous Homemaker

Do you celebrate Imbolc, or something like it? What are your traditions?


And now…


Quote of the Week

Approximately daily, I post quotes on my Facebook Page. The quote with the most likes, shares, and comments will become the Quote of the Week. Be sure to “like” my page so you don’t miss any, and so you can make your favorites known!

Quote of the Week / Stephen King/ Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Thank you for joining me for My Week on WednesdayTell me, what did you do this week? I’d love to hear!

Also, if you haven’t already, be sure to come visit me on Facebookhang out with me on Google+ and follow me on Pintrest and Twitter

And be sure to join us on Friday for the From the Farm Blog Hop!

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We only ever promote products and businesses that we believe will be helpful to our readers.
The photos in this post were edited with PicMonkey.

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This post has been shared here: From the Farm Blog Hop, Old-Fashioned Friday, Freedom Friday, Natural Family Friday, Awesome Life Friday, Savoring Saturday, Simply Natural Saturday, and Simple Saturday. And Sunday Social Blog Hop.
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8 Responses to My Week on Wednesday and Imbolc

  1. Pingback: From the Farm Blog Hop… Roasted Sweet Potato Soup » Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

  2. Lynda Hardy says:

    I am so glad you shared this with us this week – our Grove in Baltimore had their Imbolc celebration last night – very fun and also very c-c-c-cold! I really like this round up of ways to acknowledge in it daily life. 🙂

    • onceuponatimeinabedofwildflowers says:

      Brrrr! It has been SO cold lately, I have to admit that I’m hoping for an early spring.
      Thank you! I think it’s important to incorporate the seasons into daily life! 🙂

  3. Janet Garman says:

    Christine your post is beautiful! The “my week on Wednesday” posts are so full of goodness. They must take you a lot of time but I hope you keep doing them because they are so much fun to read. thanks for sharing this one on Sunday Social – Janet

  4. Umm..rice pudding! Thanks so much for linking up your beautiful recipe to Savoring Saturdays! Hope to see you again soon.

  5. Mike says:

    Rice pudding….just took delivery of 15 kilo of rice from visitors today (that’s the dogs food sorted – well part of it) might steal a bit and make some rice pudding.

    My week……let me see, I’ve made an Inkle loom, raised the chickens perches, refilled the goat stalls with hay, they do enjoy eating their bedding LOL, moved my living room around- an actual living room in winter, I work, sleep, eat, read etc in there, much more efficient to heat one room (plus the kitchen, my stove also heats the living room, good use of fuel), made a batch of Kimchi, been aging some cheese (not like that’s hard, put some cheese out and let it do the job itself LOL), numerous trips to the well for water (for the goats buckets of tea) I’m pretty sure I’ve done other fun stuff too, but having slept in between doing stuff I seem to have forgotten, let’s just say iu was busy enough but could have done more 🙂

    Oh yeah….been watching the process of the workers that are busy felling trees in the forest next to my property 🙁

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