Imbolc kicks off the calendar year as far as witchy holidays go. It reminds us that spring is near, and there’s a stirring of new life. Imbolc means “in the belly,” and Imbolc is considered the “quickening of the year.” It brings with it hope and excitement of the life that is near. But what do you DO for Imbolc? Well, here are some simple ways to celebrate Imbolc if you’ve never observed it before.
Imbolc is celebrated February 1-2. It’s sometimes known as Candlemas due to the Christian’s attempt to blend the two holidays.
Imbolc is traditionally known as Brigid’s Day. She was such a well-loved goddess that the Christian church made her St. Bridget. She’s a goddess of healing, fertility, poetry as well as smithcraft. She’s also a goddess of Fire and the Sun. She brings fertility not only to people and animals but to the land as well. She’s closely connected to newborns and midwives. She is represented as the Triple Goddess.
Simple Ways to Celebrate Imbolc
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Decorate Your Altar
Decorating your altar for different holidays is always fun and encouraged. To do so for Imbolc, you can add Brigid’s cross, white and green candles, a swan feather if you can ethically find one, or perhaps a crystal swan figurine or a triple goddess statue.
A Brigid’s Cross is traditionally made of reeds, but you can use other pliable materials as well. If they are reeds, you will need to soak them in lukewarm water until they are nice and soft. Use the diagram below to bend the reeds over one another in half to create your cross.
When it is the size you want, tie the four ends off with string. You can decorate your cross and make it as fancy as you want it to be.
It may not be time for planting where you live, but you can always plant indoors. Matter-of-fact, it’s the perfect time to start your seedlings. So get some seeds and set them to sprout. If you have an empty cardboard (not styrofoam) egg crate, you can use that, or they should have seedling forms at your nearest nursery.
Baking a cake to celebrate is always an excellent way to go. Using seeds of some sort is even better for this holiday. A lemon poppyseed cake is my favorite. There’s a fantastic recipe to give a try. You could always go for a vanilla lavender one too, YUM!
Light it Up
Brigid is a fire goddess so lighting your candles or starting a fire (in a pit or fireplace, you don’t burn the place down) is the perfect way to end the evening. Since she is the goddess of fertility, you can either get the kids involved and tell them each a tale about your pregnancy and birth with them. Or you can do something creative instead. Birthing isn’t all about physical babies, after all.
Imbolc is also meant to mean “ewe’s milk.” So spending some time enjoying a little dairy, whether that be ice cream or a cheese plate, then eat up. I’ll nosh on some almond milk yogurt and granola instead.
So there are a lot of different simple ways to celebrate Imbolc. You can do one or all of them. Just get yourself in the spirit to welcome in the hope and light of the spring to come. It isn’t here yet, but there is hope, and that’s the most important thing.
I think it’s especially important after coming off 2020. The Age of Aquarius has me very hopeful and the shift in energy has felt like a deep sigh of relief. So I’m all for a little celebration and welcoming the sun and some joy back into our lives. I hope you are too.
To learn about other pagan holidays that rock the wheel of the year click HERE.