Candles, Gemstones, and Incense
Of course, as with all Wiccan and Pagan celebrations and rituals, the most inexpensive way to go about casting or celebrating is with candles. The main candle ritual for Imbolc is to light a red candle in every room of the house for a few minutes after sunset of February 1st. This ritual is to honour the Sun’s rebirth. Along with the red candle ritual, there are other colours that go along with Imbolc:
- Light Green
Any variations of these colours are a great way to show your festive spirit while saving big. Plenty of candles, especially white, can be found at any dollar store.
Another great tradition is stone gathering. Whether alone or with some companions, stone gathering is basically what it sounds like; going out for a walk in the sun, and collecting stones. This tradition is symbolic of searching for signs of spring on it’s way, plus it’s honestly a joy to take a walk through the park and find some pretty stones to add to your collection.
Along with stone gatherings, Imbolc has gemstones that accompany the holiday, including:
Take some time to travel to a second hand store or maybe that antiques boutique you saw downtown that one time and go on a hunt for a new gemstone. There’s always a deal if you keep your eyes peeled.
Last but not least, incense. The aromas of Imbolc are fragrant and reminiscent of spring, and perfect for anointing every room in your house with the essence of springtime. These are the scents that are paired with Imbolc:
If incense isn’t something you like, a good substitution would be essential oils. I like to anoint my candles with vanilla before lighting them; it gives me the feeling of strengthening the Imbolc blessing while also having my home smell like vanilla.
Dinners and Desserts
Cooking and baking from scratch are fairly new endeavors for me (usually fast food and frozen dinners are easiest and most cost-effective) but I’ve found that, if you find the right sales and use the right coupon combinations, making meals from scratch isn’t as hard as it seems. The hardest part is finding the energy to do so.
There are plenty of recipes online for perfect Imbolc feasts and treats, and my favourite is in a list you can find here. This year, I decided to make crescent cakes, found on the sight linked before. It’s a treat my partner and I both adore, especially for a light breakfast, and paired with any herbal tea, well, it just feels like dining with the divines.
Imbolc is a holiday of the coming of spring, or cleaning out the old to welcome in the new, so what better way to celebrate than by starting to cook more? Plenty of witchcraft happens in the kitchen, where you combine intent with ingredients and create the most decadent potions and pastries.
I love the beginning of spring, when the snow melts and the flowers break through to reach for the sun. Imbolc celebrates that, and there are plenty of cost-effective ways to enjoy the first signs of spring.
One way is to go outside. The sun is shining, snow is melting, temperatures are rising, now is the perfect time to go for a walk and search for signs of spring. Take a camera and find some birds nests in trees, or walk along a creek bed and find some little stones to collect. Maybe take some birdseed and nuts to feed the birds and the squirrels.
Another activity is spring cleaning. It always sounds worse than it is, but cleaning your house or apartment is such a weight lifted from your shoulders. Spiritual cleansing of your home is just as important, too. Use a besom to sweep out the staleness of your home, starting from the farthest room and pushing it all out the open door. Grab a sage stick and smudge the corners of every room, chasing out the old and negative and making way for the new and positive.
My favourite Imbolc spring activity is gardening. Now is the perfect time to plant something, tend your gardens, or bring in something floral to decorate your home with. Maybe a flower wreath or just a couple of daisies in a jar, anything that brings you joy and reminds you that winter is almost over, and spring will be here soon.
However you decide to celebrate Imbolc, make sure you have an enjoyable time, and remember; the snow won’t stay here forever.