Dandelion Cookie Offering. Photo by Grey Catsidhe, 2015.
I seem to post about food an awful lot, and I hope you’ll forgive me. Harvesting, making, and preserving food plays such an important role in our religious traditions and holidays.
I recently recognized what has become a family tradition in early May – harvesting and cooking with dandelion flowers. In fact, I know we had a huge harvest of dandelions around Mother’s Day last year because I have an adorable photo of Bee, dressed up for the day, sitting in our backyard surrounded by lovely yellow dandelions! It was around that time that we made dandelion cookies.
On Saturday, after treating myself to a fabulous hot stone massage, we returned home, then Bee and I gathered some dandelion flowers. Day by day, I’m teaching her to respect nature, how Mama Earth provides food for us, how we work with other creatures like the honeybees, and how to express our gratitude. Seeing her grow in her knowledge and vocabulary is just magical.
When the cookies were done baking, I saw that one looked like a heart. Immediately, I knew I wanted to give that one back as an offering to the Earth Mother. Bee picked a few too many flowers, so we gave those back as well. Between the birds, the ants, and the rain we had last night, the cookie is indeed going back into the Earth Mother.
Land, Sky, and Sea. Photo by Grey Catsidhe, 2015.
I’ve had such a lovely Mother’s Day today. We had breakfast in my favorite cafe in Clayton, NY, then spent some time at Grass Point State Park. We put our feet in the river for the first time this year, and it felt amazing. It was like a homecoming. While Bee and her father played on the slides, I sat under some willows, where the land met the river, and meditated for a little bit. I watched the honeybees pollinating the flowers all around me, watched the terns swoop through the air, listened to the St. Lawrence River whisper against the sand. Nearby, plants grew, an otter carcass decayed, and seabirds sang over the small, rocky islands. Everything, everyone, was part of the Earth Mother, and I was there with them. Just as she nourishes me, I nourish my daughter. One day, we will nourish others in the great cycle… I sang to the River Spirit who is part of the Earth Mother.
It is just so beautiful and ineffable. Cookies, flowers, songs, and prayers are but a simple expression of my love and gratitude. Later, I did the work – I mixed new, organic potting soil with homemade compost. Filled the pots, preparing them for homegrown veggies and flowers for our pollinator allies. Working with the Earth Mother, working to improve my involvement with the Earth Mother, with my brother and sister Nature Spirits… Still so much to do, so much to learn…
Whenever I do a devotional, I pray:
Earth Mother, may my greatest offering be my daily attempts to walk lighter upon you…
Every day, I learn more and grow more in my understanding, just like my daughter…