This year we decided we would always begin the festivities of Yule on December 20 no matter what night the Solstice falls on.
Each night has its own small celebration which, aside from acknowledging another night, we didn’t do much.
I spent the majority of this Yule gathering intel. We exchanged gifts on the first night, celebrated the Solstice itself on the 21st, and we had Santa and Xmas gifts along with a family dinner on the 25th.
Keeping in mind what we did this year, and using what I’ve gathered from what I have read at various sources, I have begun to formulate a Yule celebration plan for next year. Part of the reason why I’m writing about it now is so I will have access to it next year. I’m likely not to think about the celebrations until after Thanksgiving 2015.
The Solstice in 2015 will be on December 22. We will begin our celebrations again on the 20th.
The first night is Mother’s night special to Frigga. We will take this night to honor Frigga and all mothers in our ancestry. This is also the night we exchange family gifts.
The second night is the Wild Hunt, a time to reflect on the scary aspects of the dark season. I’m guessing this is where the line There’ll be tales of the glories and scary ghost stories of Christmases long long agocame from in “Holly Jolly Christmas”. This is a night that will definitely be spent indoors!!
The third is the High Feast, which we will always celebrate on Yule even if we have to move around the date. It just so happens that 2015 won’t require rearranging. Tonight we will do our family ritual for the solstice and when we will have our special feast.
The fourth is a night for Njord and Freya. We will take this night to honor all of the elements and elementals.
The fifth is community. This will get easier as Witchlette gets older. To start, we’re going to do something small like buy some food and drop it off at the food pantry. Eventually I hope to work up towards giving our time at a shelter or a food kitchen (and yes this is something I want to do more than just one day a year!)
The sixth is for family. We will spend the morning together enjoying gifts from Santa and a lovely breakfast together. After a morning together enjoying time off from work, and a nap, we will gather with extended family for dinner.
The seventh is a night just for Thor. A night when we will look at extremes and balances. Thor is a perfect model for this as he goes from calm and clear-thinking to raging, angry warrior. It’s important to have both, but they must be kept in check.
The eighth is for Skadi and Ullr. Solstice is the start of winter and this night is a time to look at the aspects of cold.
The ninth is for Odin and all fathers. We will take this night to honor Odin and all fathers in our ancestry.
The tenth for the sun, as it as has firmly began its return to the Northern Hemisphere and the days begin to feel “normal” again, as they haven’t since mid-October.
The eleventh is for honoring all Goddesses and Gods, and men and women in our ancestry.
The twelfth, which falls on December 31st, is oath night. This year Hubby and I are making a memory jar. We are resolving to live in the moment and enjoy everything life gives. A memory jar has trinkets and momentos from events, or slips of paper describing the moment, that is happy or important to one or all of us, no matter how big.
Happy 2015. Friday decorations will come down and thoughts of Yule will be put aside until next year.