Doe, A Deer, A Female Reindeer: The Spirit of Mother Christmas

Originally posted on gather:
Oh wondrous headed doe… Amongst its horns it carries the light of the blessed sun…” Hungarian Christmas Folk Song Long before Santa charioted his flying steeds across our mythical skies, it was the female reindeer who drew the sleigh of the sun goddess at winter solstice. It was when we “Christianized” the…

Aromatic & Spicy Juniper Berry Sugar Stars

Originally posted on gather:
Juniper Berry is simply divine. Aromatic and perfumey, it is just the perfect spice for a buttery cookie. Growing on Vancouver Island, and all over the world, common junipers gorgeous blue-black berries (actually tiny cones) are best known as the taste ingredient of gin. For those who have never encountered the…

Cranberry & Peppermint Honey Cake: Hail To The Mothers!

Originally posted on gather:
It’s no secret that baking confections, cookies and fruit cakes have long been part of feminine customs surrounding the winter holidays. But one beautiful baking tradition is now almost entirely forgotten, and it served as the inspiration for this fruity, dense Mother’s Night Honey Cake. And while it may be a bit…

Frankincense and cinnamon winter balm

Originally posted on Teacups & Pearls:
I don’t know about you, but I’m a fan of natural or organic skin care, but oftentimes I’m not a fan of the price. I like to know what I’m putting on my skin, or at least be able to pronounce all the ingredients. I love coconut oil and…

Winter Medicine: Delicious & Warming Tonic Syrups

Originally posted on gather:
When dark, winter days challenge our bodies as well as our spirits, nothing makes a better remedy than old-fashioned tonic syrups. Time-tested & true, these potent preventatives and remedial healers call on the nourishing, medicinal powers of tonic plants and adaptogenic herbs, berries, honey and warming spices. And not only will…