craft and kitchen

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While I don’t think you have to buy every witchy book there is, I do believe that if you are interested in foraging from the wild to gather plants to use in your kitchen craft, or your green craft, you really should get your hands on a good field guide.

So many plants look like other plants, making it hard to identify them at times. This is where a field guide can be of value, and an important part of plant study.

The one I have by Lone Pine Publishing is such a valuable tool for me, and I like the detailed information it includes. From a history of the plants uses, their descriptions, and even warnings about certain plants as well.

It’s not often I leave without first making sure it’s in my foraging bag.

I also have a guide on trees, and one on plants in general from Lone Pine, but this one is my favourite. 🌱🌿☘🌾

How to dry rose petals the lazy way

My dear husband gave me some pretty white-pinkish roses for Valentines Day and as they were starting to wilt I figured it would be a waste to just throw them out. So why not dry them! My usual method of drying involved bundling the flowers and hang them upside down over a radiator. I used to do this quite a lot when I was a teenager but I have lost the patience to do so (Also I don’t have a suitable radiator in my current house anymore)

I looked around for a faster method and stumbled upon a few options:

Option 1: Place petals on a flat surface in a warm environment with lots of ventilation and leave for a loooooong time.
No. Not an option if you have a hyperactive 4 year old running around and destroying everything in his path.

Option 2: Dry them using an oven. Place rose petals on an oventray and put them in the oven on 200 degrees while leaving the oven door open.
Still takes too long for me so I found another method:

Option 3: Nuke the fuckers. The microwave, Now let me tell you, I was a bit skeptic about this. I mean, rose petals in the microwave? I don’t know man. But hey, they said on the internet that it would take only a minute. Not too bad,so I tried it.

I placed the petals on a plate covered in kitchen paper, making sure that the petals were not touching each other. I place the plate in the microwave and blasted them for a minute an a half. They were not completely dry yet so I nuked them for another minute. The came out perfectly dry.
You want them to be crunchy, like potato chips, if they are still bendy, there’s still some moisture left in them.

 After they’re nuked till crispy I placed them on a baking tray to dry for another 48 hours before storing them in an airtight container (I placed the tray on top of a closet and out of sight from my dear little monster child)

^ This is the result of me being an impatient little shit.
I put the 2nd batch of petals in the microwave for a full 3,5 minutes because, hey, maybe it’s faster than checking on them every 30 seconds…
Burnt the everloving fuck out of the poor things.
So be patient.

Tah-daah. Finished. 
The pot I used is a glass airtight pot that used to hold instant coffee. The only reason I drink instant coffee is because of the pretty pots like this one, I’m building up quite a collection of them. They’re very useful to store various stuff in

Anyway, I hope this was useful!
I’ll make a new post about what to do with them once I figure it out myself :)

Witch Tip

It’s okay to use the same three herbs in all your spells. It’s okay to have a simple altar. It’s okay to give the store brand as offerings. It’s okay to modify spells, chants, recipes to fit you and your practice. Being a witch doesn’t have to be expensive. 

A Green Witch’s Herb Bread

This is a bread recipe I have grown so familiar with that it’s taken up root in my bones. If you’ve got a good relationship with the bread and can hear when it’s springy and when it needs to be kneaded, you can forego the measuring cups too. This will make a honeyed brown bread, perfect for Mabon (as it incorporates wheat, honey, and the hearth), or it can be formed into circular loaves with the Solar Cross cut into them for other witchy occasions.

1 packet yeast

4 cups half white, half whole wheat flour

Several tablespoons honey

1 bottle dark beer (like a porter) - must be room temperature. Trust me on this one.

1 egg, beaten

Herbs of your choice

Put yeast and honey in a bowl and add the beer. Stir gently and allow to rest til foamy (about 5 to 10 minutes, longer if needed). Add pinch of salt and beaten egg. Mix in flour gradually, using a wooden spoon if you can, until the dough forms one cohesive mass.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead it! Use short, rapid strokes in cross directions, folding the dough over in half every other time or so. Work your intent deep into the dough at this time, and incorporate any herbs you wish to add (for Mabon: Use rosemary, crumbled walnuts, and rhubarb). Fully cover the dough in plastic wrap or a clean dish towel and let rise for at least an hour. Return, and punch down the dough, re-wrapping it and letting it rise another hour or two. Form the dough into two equal loaves (you can form a pan shape out of oven-safe tinfoil if you need), cut a design into the top to allow for splitting, lightly dust with flour, and bake at 450 degrees for about 20 minutes.

Let cool for at least another 15 minutes before cutting to serve! I’ve had nothing but excellent results with this bread, and even when it looks like the crust has been burnt to all hell, it has usually done no such thing and the springy and fluffy insides make all the time worth it. Plus, the herbs can be substituted seasonally for each feast day and celebration!

Blessed Be,

Ash

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>> g r i m o i r e , pgs. 14-16 I’m really inspired by others’ craft, and try to give them a good spot in my grimoire. I’m absolutely in LOVE with @orriculum’s pop culture spells and potions, and I hope to do more intricate pages for them if she wills it!

// this is my first time posting pages of my grimoire, and I’m super nervous about it but hopefully ya’ll like them 🎶

Cleaning Candle Holders

Cleaning candle holders is probably one of my least favorite things to do, but recently I’ve started collecting left over wax to use in other projects (a post for a much later day) and I was entrusted with a few extra candle holders to clean so what better use of chore than to make a blog post about how I get it done.

There are A LOT of ways to clean candles. This is just the way that I like doing it and I prefer to do things in batches anyways because I’m all about saving some time. 

-SUPPLIES-

  • candle holders that need cleaning
  • a large pot or bowl
  • a knife (or something you can poke wax out with)
  • paper towel/something to wipe the candle holders down with
  • hot water (I boiled my water in my tea kettle and poured it into my bowl)

-INSTRUCTIONS-

  1. Use a knife to cut slashes into the wax still in the candle holder
  2. Place candle holders in a large pot and pour hot water into candle holders and around them. Leave sitting for about 15 minutes.
  3. Leftover wax will either float to the top or be soft and cool enough to pull out with a knife
  4. You can either soak them in a fresh batch of warm water or you can wipe off the excess wax with a paper towel (I used the paper bags we save from last minute store runs)
  5. You can set aside the wax for a future project or toss it!

Witch Tip!

I had some inspiration based on Witch tip posts. If you have old or broken crayons melt then down and make candles out of them. Wicks can often be found at craft stores like Michaels. Use old glass dishes (that you don’t plan on eating from), maybe add glitter, herbs, or essential oils, you can even use certain crayon colors in a candle for a certain intention, spell, or holiday. The possibilities are endless so get creative. It’s also a great craft project to do with kids.

~*~Bath Time!~*~

Here is my list of tips and tricks for of bathy goodness. This is just what I like to do and have done in the past. Keep in mind it can all be taken with a grain of salt [literally!!]

Preparing the Bath

🛀🏻 HOT water. I find it super cleansing and sweating is really good for you. I like to sit in the bath and my face sweats and im like YEAH lets cleanse this bod inside and out. pls dont burn yourself though peeps.

🛀🏼 Oils! My go-tos are lavender + coconut oil. I do 7-10 drops of lavender and one or two spoonfuls of coconut oil. Lavender for smell and relaxation and heavenly goodness, coconut for super smoothness of skin. If you are going to use other essential oils please do your research and make sure they are skin-safe! I also generally tie up my hair to keep it out of the oiliness.

🛀🏽 Epsom salts if you got em!

🛀🏾 Candles + crystals can line the tub as desired. I usually have all the bathroom lights out + 4 candles going at the foot of the tub. dont light your towel on fire.

🛀🏿 Cup of tea on the side! I like this for the added internal + external cleanse of the bath. Hot + nourishing on the outisde and hot + nourishing on the inside.


This is what I do and think about in the bath!

💧 oh my gosh water how healing you are, how cleansing, how warming.

💧 the water and oils im sitting in are literally soaking into my skin right now. the essence of this tub is entering my body

💧 touch your body. you’re naked right? perfect. time for some self body love. tell yourself you love your legs, while touching them. “i love my little toes.” “look at how nice my hands are.” “i love my pretty/handsome face.” “my brain is so smart and quick and calm.” “i love every little hair on my body.” “i have the coolest belly button” tell yourself things that you dont instinctually believe. go after the parts that you’re self conscious about “i love my tummy” “my bum is amazing” “my arms are the perfect size” “this is my favourite flabby bit” etc.

💧 drinking the tea if you have it- the heat and intent of that tea is permeating through all your internal organs. feel the heat through your mouth, esophagus, stomach, feel it blend in with the heat from the water entering your skin. full body heaty hot heatness

💧 the other day when i was in the bath i put my forehead/third eye on the faucet and pictured the vast network of pipes around the city supplying water to everyone. I thanked the water source and sent my energy throughout the pipes to hope that everyone was using it for good and healing and nourishing ways

💧 deep deep breathing. this is cool if your chest is below the water because when you exhale it sinks down and when you inhale it rises up. you can sync this motion with a prayer, mantra, chant, intention, whatever you wish!

💧 meditation. feel the heat, listen to your heartbeat, imagine all the little water molecules full of heat energy, vibrating, sending you their little blobs of heat energy into your skin, fueling your own little internal fire

💧 my FAVOURITE thing is the end of the bath. I sit in it, sometimes cross legged or curled up in a ball with my head on my knees and unplug the drain and stay like that while the whole tub drains. I picture the water whisking away all the negative in me and draining away. It’s like a re-birth! you can slowly feel your body get heavier and heavier as the water gets lower. Keep picturing the water taking away the bad and keep thanking it for cleaning you and nourishing you and healing you. seriously, how generous of the water to not only GIVE YOU it’s nutrients and warmth and thirst quenchy goodness, but to also take away all your badness, all your negativity, all your dirt and grime and leave you revitalized. water is so selfless. water is the best. thank you water.

💧 now that you are reborn as a new human (or otherwise) you can breathe and feel the differences in your body and just marvel in the smoothness of your skin and warmth of your body and heavenly bathy feelings that just soaked into you.

💧 another thing that might be cool is to weigh yourself before and after the bath. Your weight will go up like 2 or 3 pounds after you get out of the bath, which i find super cool. PROOF that the water is literally entering your body through your skin and staying there to heal you up real nice.

The most important thing IMO:

Do what comes to you naturally. all of this stuff just came into my head at different points in bath time and felt right for me to do. meditation might help you connect with that intuitive part of you that tells you what you need. if you get an urge, follow it. if your brain/body/soul tells you to stand up and sit down a bunch of times, or to dunk your head in or to blow bubbles or to splash with your feet, DO IT! just be safe and don’t hurt yourself or light anything on fire.

🐳The End🐳

OK sorry this post got out of hand but as you can tell i really like baths and water and bath meditation. This is something i’ve been doing for a while and it all came to me kind of naturally so forgive me if it is not specifically inclined toward a perspectives or approaches that you normally adhere to. I’m open to questions n things <3

ENJOY PALS!!

🍃 Calming Protection Spell Jar 🍃
So this is my first Spell Jar and I whipped it up for my mate.
▪Sea Salt
▪Rosemary
▪Thyme
▪Chamomile
▪Cinnamon
▪Basil
▪Cloves (one for each letter of her name)
▪Mint (because I feel it’s cool and calm)
▪Tied with light blue string because I associate the colour with calmness and her as a person and I wanted to figuratively “tie” this to her.

☆Important☆
I didn’t really measure anything out, unfortunately my brain is very chaotic and so my craft is going to be quite similar… I just added ingredients until it felt right.

Whilst I added ingredients I concentrated on my intent and what I wanted as an outcome. It’s best to feel calm as you make this.

From Thought to Table: A Guide (of sorts) to Kitchen Craft

This is meant to be seen a sort of step by step guide to how kitchen witchcraft works in my practice. This is something that I am frequently asked about, so I felt that it was time to write up a little post about it!

Disclaimer: this is how I have broken down kitchen craft in my own practice. Other practitioners may have different process, and that’s fine! I am, by no means, an authority on the topic. Forge your own path and do what’s right for you.

Intention

What is your intention? How do you want your intent magically punctuated, if you will? Decide on these things and choose your approach and ingredients accordingly.

Example: I’m having a family dinner and I want those in attendance to get along peacefully. I will want to choose ingredients associated with peace, calm, happiness, friendship, familial love, etc. I would want to avoid things that may work against my goal, such as stimulants or ingredients with harsh correspondences. Consider your method: perhaps a dessert to sweeten them up? Or a soup to warm their hearts? It’s all up to you!

Gathering/Harvesting

Herbs traditionally have ideal times for harvesting, so that their magic is best preserved. I try to heed this, if I am growing my own.

Growing your own herbs! If you have the time, space, and capability, I really recommend this. Not only can you add intent and power to your plant (giving it charged water, bonding with them, etc), but you can ensure that it’s harvested and stored correctly.

Not into growing your own? Or maybe, like myself (college witch problems, y'all), you are not in the ideal situation to grow and raise a full garden? I totally get it. I just try to shop in season. Shopping is harvesting, of sorts.

Preparation and Cooking

Prep is actually my favorite part of the whole cooking process. I don’t know why, I just find the methodical approach to making sure each and every ingredient has been prepped to be really relaxing.

Anyway, this is the time to focus on why you’ve chosen to add each ingredient. Invoke them, talk about what properties they have that made you choose them, thank them. Feel free to get personal.

As you prep and cook, focus on your intent. For me, this involves a lot of energy work and thinking about tradition.

I think about all of the times I’ve seen my family take these same steps in the kitchen, no matter what they were making, and the thought and care they took every time to make sure it turned out right.

I think about the different generations of my family and how they all found joy and strength in performing these daily rituals, like chopping and cooking and baking.

There’s something to be said for paying tribute to tradition. For this reason, I like to listen to music that I heard in the kitchen when I was growing up (The Temptations, anyone?), but I recommend choosing something that matches your intent.

Presentation

This part is definitely optional, but it can really add a boost to your work! I like to work mostly with color psychology in this part, honestly. But the portion size, plating, all kinds of different variables can add a boost of intent to the meal!


Anyway, I hope this gives people some insight on kitchen craft! It can seem mysterious and secretive (which it certainly can be), but the basic steps are easy. It’s what you choose to do with it that counts! And don’t feel that kitchen witchcraft is only meant for the *best of ingredients*, or whatever. I’ve had just as much success with witchy Ramen noodles as I have a full-blown gourmet dinner.

No matter what you choose, as long as your energy and intent are there, it’ll turn out fine!

Witch concepts

A urban witch spray painting sigils of protection on the door of her store that to the untrained eye look like just another graffiti tag.
A Christian witch whispering a prayer to the Heavenly Father as they mix together a healing potion for their sick grandmother.
A crafting witch imbuing every stitch with purpose. Her homeless best friend will not be cold this winter.
A moon witch paying close attention to their friends during certain phases, knowing the effect it can have on their emotions.
A kitchen witch carving a wooden spoon into a wand that is more powerful than you could believe.
Witches…

Sunny Spring Lemon Curd

3-4 lemons (zest and juice)

200 grams sugar

3 medium eggs

50 grams of butter

1. Put all ingredients except butter into a non-stick saucepan.

2. Heat the ingredients on medium heat, whisking continuously.

3. When the curd starts to bubble turn the hob into lower heat and keep whisking for 7-8 minuted or until the curd has thickened to your liking.

4. Remove from the heat and mix the butter in until completely melted, this gives the curd nice shine. 

5. Leave the curd into saucepan until cooled. Do not mix anymore.

6. Use or put into sanitized, dry jar. The curd keeps in the fridge about a month.

—–

Spring Equinox is drawing close (20th of March in 2017. Ostara or Ēostre is on March 21st) and many witches celebrate it regardless of the Path they follow. Celebration of Spring and new growth is important part of many practices all around the world.

I like to celebrate the Spring and oncoming summer with fruitbread (recipe coming) and home made lemon curd.

Lemons are purifying and clensing, and give you fresh start for the spring. It also turns away harmful spells and evil eye. Lemon juice is useful for rheumatism, excessive menstruation, asthma and supports the immune system during times of illness. Their yellow colour also symbolises sun, light, creativity, happiness and warmth.

Some people are sensitive to lemons. This may manifest as a headache or asthmatic symptoms. The acid in lemons is damaging to tooth enamel.

Eggs are symbol of health and fertility, new life and rebirth. They absorb negativity and can ward or shield you against evil eye. Raw eggs can be used to nourish and wash your hair naturally (among many other things).

Some people are allergic to eggs. This may manifest as rash, stomach pains, respiratory problems etc.

Sugar has noted summoning and attracting powers. It can help you to attract wealth, quality and other things you might desire. It can also sweeten people’s feelings towards you.

Butter is symbol of wealth, growth and rationality. If salted it can also have mild banishing powers towards poverty and money loss.