Brigid’s Eve – There’s a grand stretch in the evenings

I’ve noticed there’s been a stretch in the evenings since the first week of January, out walking the dogs, as it wasn’t as dark as the previous week, on our return home! I saw my first snow drops and daffodils last Sunday, while walking to attend a Druidic ceremony for Imbolc. Snowdrops are associated with Brigid, so I took it as a good omen

I’ve had the pleasure of being one of the facilitators of Operation Transformation, which is St. Colman’s Camogie club event. I was asked months ago, and I confess when asked, I said yes, without asking any details! So since January 8th, I’ve been teaching a yoga class, every Monday in Beagh community hall. Which has been very well attended, even though the weather has been very very cold and I have christened our class, Frozen Yoga! So I’m really heart-warmed by the 20 odd people who’ve shown up every week. It’s good to be back teaching a yoga class.

Brigid’s Eve – January 31st – is traditionally the time to put your Brat Bhride, a piece of cloth to represent the Cloak of Brigid. It becomes imbued with the dew with healing powers and protections, which will last for a year. Placing it somewhere in your house, brough out as and when needed to aid healing for a headache, a sore throat or other aliments. Today I made some Brigid’s Crosses made of rushes with my Art Course in Ennistymon, some of them had made them before, others never, and some not since attending primary school … a good few winters ago! We also made some Brideog dolls from left over rushes. And our tutor showed up the Brideog doll she was showed how to make in Iniseer, Aran Islands. Lots of places in Ireland, had their own variety of Crosses and Brideog dolls, some counties had particular colour to the cloth they used for Brat Bhrid too. I love the fluidity of the traditions, so I don’t think it’s irreverent or disrespectful to use pipe cleaners for Brigid’s Crosses. I’ve even made one using the double pages of Hello magazine, which featured on an RTE programme a few years ago!

Our Art Class exhibition is upcoming in March, from 14th to 23rd, in the Courthouse Gallery in Ennistymon, we are finalising getting our pieces ready to show, as a collective. Looking forward to seeing our vast array of work, styles, and subject matter. Majority of my ceramic pieces, that I made have lasted through firing etc – one either needs remaking entirely or a patch up job – but I’m very happy with what I’ve produced. My theme for my work, is Sheela na Gig and last Sunday at the Druidic ceremony, I met a lovely guy, who’s been making Sheela na gigs of Tipperary from air drying clay – really amazingly detailed work. There are admirers of Sheelas everywhere! Not my daughter though. I think she gave our last Sheela ceramic tile the evil eye and then it fell and broke.

I’ve had some interesting Sound Bath meditations in January, in lots of different places, from Hardiman Hotel in Eyre Square (the last time I was at an event there, it was my father’s wedding) to totally new to me Yoga Darsana – what a hidden gem in Salthill, overlooking Galway Bay. Looking forward to where February will take us, check out Upcoming Workshops if you’re interested in checking out where myself and the Sound Babies will be in the next few months.

La Feile Bride

Fiona

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