With a new calendar year comes the sense of expectation, as endless possibility mingles with more than its share of butterflies. Even though the Sun now grows gradually stronger courtesy of our glorious Winter Solstice, the days still feel grimly short. The cold has taken up a seemingly permanent residence in our bones, stubbornly refusing to leave, and doesn’t everything just feel like too much effort? Yet, cauldrons of creativity simmer. This is the duality of January, mes amours, because while the conditions are absolutely stellar for planning and plotting, are we just…too tired? Consider the forest right now: as a white-cold blanket covers its emerald floor, ice balconies magickally form along the water’s edge, as if to beckon the woodland sprites to gather so that they may gaze upon a wondrous sight: the sun beaming down brightly into the center of a gently swirling stream, oh-so-quietly dancing. Everything is so perfectly still. Except for the water. The water moves.
Our creative blood indeed still flows, you can bet on it. The trick? You have to move at the pace it dictates. An adjustment is required with every season, and this one wants us to slow down a little. When the body asks for rest, grant it (the mind will thank you tenfold, too) but by all means, keep dreaming. Hold your visions close, and allow them to take on whatever form they wish. Watch them grow, undulate, even disappear to make room for new ones – but do it all with bemusement, as if you were witnessing tiny lights appear where no one else can see them. Your little sparkling secret. This is where the power of Winter will root, and where the seedlings of Spring will begin to find their place.
January unfolds early with the vibrations carried forth from a spectacular New Moon Solar Eclipse we were gifted at the end of December, and with it some fairly ambitious Capricorn energy that will carry us through much of this month. And as we discussed last month, the Goat is wholly determined to reach his destination, tirelessly climbing to the top. However, his shadow side can give us an insufferable case of “I want more,” with perpetual dissatisfaction for where we are right now. And while his need for material wealth can seriously push us forward, watch out for devaluing what you already have. Instead, embrace the stellar work ethic that Capricorn brings, along with his innate ability to provide the means to realize our most treasured goals.
CAPRICORN POWER CARD: The Devil Be wary of temptation. Chains that appear to bind you are easily shed – you are not stuck. Stay in gratitude for what you have.
This is part of why everything feels overwhelming right now. We are at once very ready to get started on new plans (and even willing to tackle the work that lies before us,) but actually fancy a good long snooze instead. They way to navigate this like a Smart Witch? Do both. My favorite way to spend a Winter’s workday is to bring my notebooks, computer, colored pencils, vintage magazines, whatever, into my bed. This makes for a sublimely artistic disaster area, and I love it. (I have a ridiculous collection of notebooks – one for every possible project going on in my head. And they are all large, because my handwriting is enormous, but also because I don’t like feeling constrained.) I settle back into layers of satin and faux fur, and get to daydreaming. Try it! You will be amazed at how many ideas come in, and good ones. Normally I would never advocate doing anything work related in the boudoir, but it’s the dead of Winter, and someone has to take charge. Bonus: you can have a cat nap anytime you like!
Now, as you are gleefully creating within the sensuality of your sacred space, momentum builds steadily towards the Full Moon Lunar Eclipse on January 10th (2:21pm EST.) And it occurs in none other than hearth-loving Cancer. So, while the Goat desires to achieve greater heights with his steady climb, nurturing those ambitions becomes easy. Remember that Cancer is the mother of the zodiac, feeding and caring for her young. She also tends toward nostalgia, so be aware of glorifying the past a little too much, and instead focus on where you would like to go. Lunar eclipses are fond of weeding out what isn’t working, and can be rattling in their intensity- this one will be no exception. With watery, sensitive, emotionally-charged vibes all around, you may feel the need to step up and protect yourself, or perhaps come to the aid of another. This Moon would be an ideal time to invest in your own personal power by way of mediations, yoga, and tending to your home and loved ones, including yourself. The magick worked should be along those lines, as opposed to attempting to manifesting something big in the outer world.
A beautiful way to begin? Have a glorious soak. It may be too cold to forest bathe, so why not bring woodland wisdom right into your bath? It’s sublime, I do promise you. Talk about balance! Fragrant, powerful tree magick frolicking with the great intuitive gifts of water lulls you into a state of blissful calm, just in time to greet the Full Moon with grace and beauty.
10 drops Nordic pine essential oil
6 drops cedarwood essential oil
6 drops nutmeg essential oil
4 drops balsam fir essential oil
4 drops cypress essential oil
Draw a warm bath. As the water fills, begin to take deep, slow breaths. As you breathe, connect to the rhythm of the water. Begin to visualize yourself with a strong inner balance, an ability to flow with the tides, and a great sense of peace. One by one add in the oils, with the awareness of the gifts they bring. Breathe in the scent of the forest and its grounding strength, as the water rises to open up your intuition. (If you happen to have some fresh pine needles about, toss them in.) When the bath is ready, sink down into it and keep the visual going. Really feel it. And stay a good long while. You will emerge refreshed, revived, and entirely in control. Your plant friends have infused you with their magick!
Nordic Pine Powerful pine heals, protects, and banishes negativity while bringing forth abundance and creativity. Antioxidant-rich, it fights visible signs of aging and balances skin.
Cedarwood This beautiful, solar-ruled tree grants protection, abundance, healing, and purifying negativity. It’s beauty magick keeps skin youthful while soothing, repairing, and protecting from harmful bacteria.
Nutmeg Fiery nutmeg brings good luck, good health, and good money! Ruled by Jupiter, it balances and hydrates the skin while fighting inflammation.
Balsam Fir This gorgeous tree extract fights fatigue while lifting spirits and brightening our emotions. It soothes aches and ailments, and clears the lungs for easier breathing.
Cypress Earthy cypress possesses the power of longevity, bringing comfort, healing, and protection. Sacred to Artemis, it is the tree of the underworld, and protects us as we travel inward during this time of year.
Beauty Witch Secret: The Full Moon of January is known as the Wolf Moon with the power of protection, working beneath the surface, and conceiving.
Just a few days after the Sun enters the sign of the Water Bearer, we have a New Moon in collaborative Aquarius on January 24th (4:42pm EST.) Now is the time to emerge from the protective, solitary shell and start assembling the team. Consider the support you might need to move forward towards Spring, and begin to look around. Aquarius can help you in finding just the right fit (in particular with regards to media or online services) and can connect you with the social causes dear to your heart. With legendary Aquarian intellect, you have an auspicious Moon for clear, innovative thinking. Use it! Plant the seeds now for connecting with the very best people to work with, and watch who appears within the next six months.
On the more glamorous side of things, I love New Moons for beginning new beauty rituals. Being that we’ve just recovered from a whirlwind holiday season – and all its indulgences – I’m going to guess that you might be feeling a bit less than gorgeous right now. Unacceptable! Let’s get back on track by beginning the day in goddess style with a sorceresses’ delight: the beauty breakfast. It’s as easy as waving a wand to conjure a simple, madly tasty, delectably moveable feast that feeds your beauty from the inside out – with more than a little magick to spare. Nutrient-deficient nibbles, begone!
Wild Oat Porridge
½ cup wild oats
¼ cup hazelnuts
¼ cup dried mulberries
¼ cup dried cranberries, apple juice sweetened
¼” piece ginger root, peeled and grated
A generous pinch of ground cardamom
1 packet stevia
What are “wild oats?” Simply put, they are the unprocessed version of the ubiquitous rolled oats, making them a more nutritious option. Known, horridly, as “oat groats” they are found in most bulk sections of health food stores. I refuse to call them that. They are much too sexy for such a name. The fabulous thing is that you place them in a bowl (a portable one with a lid if you will be taking them to work or school) and add just enough unsweetened almond milk to cover them. Now add in stevia, cardamom, and grated ginger. Give it a good clockwise stir, and see yourself taking on the coming days with energy, enthusiasm, and a light-as-air feeling. Know that with each bite you are feeding not only your beauty, but your creations. Let the mixture sit in the refrigerator overnight. In the morning, the almond milk will have absorbed into the oats so the texture will resemble fluffy cooked quinoa. Sprinkle the berries and hazelnuts, add a splash more milk if you like, and you are golden. It’s tempting to drizzle a bit of maple syrup on top, but go easy – the spiced flavor is so exquisite you won’t want to compromise it.
Of course, spices and toppings can be anything you like at any time. Get into the habit of enjoying wild oats regularly, and watch yourself glow! Almond milk adds beautifying vitamin E, but of course feel free to add any plant-powered milk you like.
Oats Venusian oats not only contain her beauty magick, but a generous dollop of abundance. In their wild form, they are light, filling, easily digested, packed with beauty minerals (copper, biotin, magnesium, vitamin B,) and a nice source of protein.
Hazelnuts Solar-powered hazelnuts promote wisdom, creativity, and the ability to utilize the intellect, making them wonderfully harmonious with Aquarian energy. They contain high amounts of vitamin E, as well as vitamins A and C, which create a triple goddess of wrinkle prevention and hair fortifying prowess.
Cranberries Nutrient-rich and full of fiber, water-ruled cranberries hydrate the skin and promote a radiant glow. Magickally, they are highly protective. Skip the collagen-depleting “sugar added” dried variety, and experience a much sexier flavor enhanced by pure apple juice.
Mulberries Adding more of the air element to the blend, mulberries bring lots of vitamin C and iron to your day, with an irresistibly subtle anise flavor in the dried variety. They boost blood circulation for beautiful skin all over, and contain the magick of wisdom.
Ginger This beloved root gifts us with love, abundance, and more than a little firepower! Ginger not only eases digestion, improves circulation, reduces inflammation, and wards off illness, but also helps to build new collagen. Grate it on everything, especially in the colder months, and prepare to dazzle.
Cardamom Luscious, lusty cardamom is a love potion staple, and a gift from Venus herself. It detoxifies skin from the inside out with antibacterial powers, and offers a generous dose of antioxidants and vitamin C to promote cellular turnover and fight the signs of premature aging.
Beauty Witch Secret: It is said that the Queen of the Nile used cardamom in her highly sensual, mysteriously aphrodisiac perfume. Though I’m certain her temple priestesses did the actual concocting of her potion, I can’t resist thinking of Cleopatra herself doing a little moonlight conjuring.
And, that, mes petites sorcières, brings us to January’s close. All my love for joining me here each month…it is my pleasure to bring you Beauty Witch magick for every season, and I adore hearing from you!
Love and Stardust,