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7 ways to Celebrate Lammas



7 ways to Celebrate Lammas

Happy Harvest Season!

It’s not always easy following the seasonal holidays of our ancestors.

In this day and age, bread is available year round, every day at your local supermarket or even the corner gas station.

But a long time ago, bread was something special. Our ancestors had to grow the grains, harvest them, store enough for the year, mill the grain into flour and then bake it into bread.

This time of year marked to first harvest of grain. It symbolized the beginning of the end of summer and the celebration of of all the hard work they've done and a promise that they would survive the dark months.

The Anglo-Saxon word is hlaf-mass or loaf mass and a loaf of bread made from the first harvest was brought to church to be blessed. Th corners of the loaf were then placed in the corners of the home to bless the house and ensure enough food for the year.

Lammas was also considered The Feast of First Fruits and the first garden harvest was also blessed and considered special.

Lammas is also called Lughnasadh. It's the same festival with the added bonus of honoring Lugh, the Celtic Craftsman God, who was known and revered for his many skills and distribution of talent.

*He may just be The Renaissance Man's new favorite Deity*

How does one incorporate this celebration into everyday life?

Set up a harvest altar – Use the colors red, orange and yellow. A mix of summer sun and fall leaves.  Add harvest items, like wheat, corn, grapes; a sickle or scythe.

If you can't get the real thing from the grocery store or farm stand - or you don't want to use real food on your altar - find fake versions at the craft store.

Make Bread - Try it the old fashion way with flour and yeast and kneading and rising. I love this kind of hands on cooking, its a great way to focus your intentions and add blessings to your food. 

Another option *the one I'm considering this year* Make sweet bread to freeze for later use. I'm thinking a couple loaves of zucchini bread, one for now and a the rest to freeze. If wrapped correctly, sweet bread is good for 3-6 months in the freezer.

Try a different grain or a different recipe – We are creatures of habit, or at least I am. This is a great time to try a different grain to add to your dinner table.

If you always eat wheat bread, get your sandwich on rye. Instead of rice try barley. Substitute Bulgar for pasta. There are so many whole grains to choose from and so many different ways to prepare them.

Canning and Preserving - Tomatoes and pickles are a great start if your new to the craft. Or you could make jelly from summer fruits.

I always feel connected to my ancestors when I'm doing things they would have done and preparing for the long winter months is one of them

Make Corn Husk Dolls – These are easy and fun to add to harvest altars. It's also a great craft to do with kids.

I made my first corn husk doll after reading Little House on the Prairie when I was about 7 years old.

Have a Bonfire – Spend some time reflecting on the past few month, review your goals and determine if you you're happy with your progress. If you find there's anything that you're not happy about, anything you regret- write it down and toss it in the fire. Let it go and find joy in what you have accomplished.

Honor the God Lugh   *or any other Sun/Grain/Earth deity that you work with* – Spend sometime considering all your skills and talents and the way you have used them to add value and abundance to your life.

Enjoy the Season and let me know how you celebrate Lammas!

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