A day in the life of a Celtic Witch

Sep 20th, 2015 | By | Category: Articles

mabh and catBy Mabh Savage

A day in the life of the writing witch is pretty much the day in a life of anyone else. I usually get up when my son comes bouncing into the room, although now the summer holidays are over I often have to drag him out of bed! ‘5 more minutes…’ he pleads. Sometimes it’s more like having a teenager than a five year old.

We do the school run and I feed the pets. Currently this includes our two crazy cats, Starbuck and Theo, both named for Battlestar Galactica characters (Theo is short for Athena). One or both of the cats tend to follow me around the house while I put clothes away and organise myself. We have some new additions to the family now; some giant stick insects. These gorgeous guys and girls need a spray of water and some fresh bramble, so I might have a wander down the ginnel at the back of our home, to snip some branches from the mini wilderness that, happily, is allowed to grow wild.

I might notice that there are glistening, black jewels nestling among the spiky branches, so after feeding the stick insects and rearranging their home, I will probably pop out again with a bowl, and pick as many of the beautiful blackberries as I can without stripping the bush bare. I have a few of rules when berry picking: I always leave some for the birds, because as the weather gets colder the blackberries and the neighbouring hawthorn berries provide a much needed source of nutrition. I also won’t pick any berries that mean I have to break a spider’s web. I love spiders, and feel absolutely mortified if I damage their home just to get some extra fruit. My last and most practical rule is to not pick any berries from below my knee, as there are many dogs that are walked around here!

Berries picked and washed, I’ll probably cram them into the freezer amongst the elderberries and other foraged fruits that are waiting to be made into wine, jams, jellies, tonics and syrups. Autumn is such a busy time, and I’m though it’s only September I’m already thinking about elderberry and marshmallow syrup to ward off colds and protect the chest.

After a cup of tea, I might finally crack open the lap top, although I usually find this is the trigger for one or the other of the cats to come and sit on the keyboard. Why is the keyboard more comfy than my lap? I will never understand. So at least half an hour of my writing time is actually cat fussing time. Yes, this is why I am always rushing to meet my deadlines: because I am super soft with my cats!

Avoiding the distractions of facebook and twitter is the next hurdle. I open facebook initially to post a link to my Notes from the Apothecary or one of my interviews for Pagan Pages, but I always get dragged into some debate or other, or simply end up giggling at videos of, yes, ,more cats. There really is no hope for me.

Depending on the time of the month or year I may have other tasks to do. Full moons normally mean leaving offerings and preparing for gatherings if we have some planned. New moons tend to be times of cleansing; dusting altars and sacred spaces, or sometimes simply decluttering my workspace so I can focus more clearly. Magic isn’t always about grand gestures; sometimes the simplest and most mundane of tasks can have the greatest impact.

All this sort of stuff is done while Nathan is at school, and once I pick him up, it’s play time again. We’re already looking forward to the autumn equinox (camping) and Yule, which essentially means that Nathan gets to enjoy two big winter festivals, as he has Yule with me and Christmas with his dad! An arrangement which everyone seems happy with, especially the small boy who gets two days of unwrapping presents.

After Nathan turns in, I’m usually too exhausted to do much. This is my chill time, which I enjoy with my lovely fella Jim, who is very patient with my incessant insistence on filling the house with seasonal goodies and odd bits like conkers, acorns and lumps of wood and stone that I have found significant in some way.

The cats sprawl on the sofa with us, and the whole house is sleepy and still, my home and hearth that beats to my heart.

Find out more about Mabh’s work here.



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