This week we celebrate Imbolc, a holiday that, in its simplest terms, marks the halfway point between winter solstice and spring equinox. Taking place from the evening of February 1 through sundown of February 2, Imbolc is a time to take action on intentions we've been setting during the dark winter months, to bring forth new ideas into the growing light.
Even if you've never heard of Imbolc, it's interesting to reflect back on the past 6 weeks, feeling into your thoughts and experiences. What has taken place in your life? How did it make you feel? Do you notice any trends in your thinking and feeling? And, most importantly, how can you use this information to move forward? Any—or all!—of these serve as wonderful journal prompts.
I like to celebrate Imbolc by lighting a candle and taking time to reflect. This year Imbolc fell on a new moon (in addition to the Lunar New Year), so I lit a new moon candle and smudged our home with palo santo. I meditate daily, so during celebrations I up my game and do my meditation and reflection in a warm bath, made even more luxurious with bath and body oil.
If you're a gardener, perhaps you prefer to use this time to set plans in motion for your spring garden. What seeds will you be planting and when? What can you do now to make ready for the coming spring? As an avid gardener myself, Imbolc serves as a reminder to gather hardwood cuttings of spring blooming trees for forcing indoors. Forsythia is my personal favorite. I also revisit my fall lists of what plants in my garden need to be divided, moved, or replaced, as well as ideas I have for any new plantings. It feels good to know that when spring (finally) arrives, I'll be prepared.
Do you celebrate Imbolc? If so, what are your traditions? If not, I encourage you to sit back, enjoy the increasing minutes of daylight, and consider starting.