Although I celebrated with Northern Rivers Protogrove this past weekend, I’ve been acknowledging the change in the season on my own as well. We still have snow in the North Country. Some people complain about it, and indeed I look forward to the return of warmth and green, but find complaining about what Mother Nature does to be a bit laughable. One might as well complain that the moon is a particular phase. What can you do about it except go with the flow and enjoy the ride? I think it’s far more productive to think about what Mother Earth is trying to tell us when that happens.
Last winter was very difficult. It’s not that we received piles and piles of snow – quite the opposite! Because the snow was so minimal last winter, and the temperatures higher, many farmers struggled. I remember concerns about the maple syrup harvest and apple trees not producing as usual. Our ecosystem was also impacted. Ticks were a huge problem in 2012 due to the mild snow. The land needed more snow this year. In December, Northern Rivers (then the North Country Druidic Study Group) honored An Cailleach and prayed for the snow our region needed. Boy did she deliver!
On the eve of the Spring Equinox, I made an offering to the Winter Hag in thanks for what she blessed us with. I am grateful for the snow, for the challenges that test us, for the biting cold that brings us together for warmth and fellowship, and for the silent beauty of a forest pregnant with snow.
Truly, spring has been creeping upon us for over a month. The signs are all around, but they often require slowing down and looking hard. We modern folk don’t do that as often as we should, and so the winter seems to last all that much longer.
Tonight I will make an offering to the spirits of spring who I have been revealing themselves here and there, and who I look forward to seeing more of during the green part of the year!