It’s beginning to look a lot like solstice


Last 25 December we had a picnic in the limery

As many of you know, we don’t celebrate Christmas Chez Snail, although we do have a nice relaxing day on 25 December. The thing that we celebrate here is the solstice – the real turning of the year, the time when the light starts to return and we look forward to the abundance of the coming seasons. Some would say it’s pagan, but for me it’s a primal thing – deeply embedded in all of us – a spark of hope as the days start to get longer and the prospect of summer calls to us. So, the solstice is a genuine reason to celebrate, which we do with food (not presents).


Solstice lights in 2015

This year on the solstice we are going to be eating pork…ethically sourced of course. I’ll be cooking it long and slow to create ‘pulled pork’ and I’ll be baking bread rolls to serve it on. There will be a leafy salad and various home-made condiments and then we’ll finish with some sort of cake made using the abundance of eggs that our hens are still laying. We’ll eat in the limery – the source of so much abundance over the past year, and we’ll celebrate the coming of light with light – beeswax candles and fairy lights.

If you are in the northern hemisphere perhaps you too will raise a glass to the prospect of summer, and if you are in the southern hemisphere I hope you will be revelling in warm log days and the bounty of summer*.


* Of course, if you live in the tropics, such points in the year mean little and I hope that you will be enjoying your mangoes and papayas as often as possible!

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  1. I hear you on celebrating the solstice and the return of daylight. Every year, I look forward much more to the day when darkness finally gets less, even if it is only by a few minutes a day.
    I hope you enjoy your festivities. I’ll be sure to raise a glass on the night, too.

  2. The days are really getting short now, really noticeable. Enjoy your feast.

  3. Speaking from the frozen north of the US, as glad as I am for the increase in daylight, I prefer to celebrate the spring equinox. Finally out of the cold! 🙂

  4. When we hit mid-winter I have a quiet little celebration here to mark the turning of our year. There has been an odd kind of movement over the years to celebrate ‘Christmas in Mid-Winter’ which is just pure daft and driven entirely by commercial interests. But, a small celebration involving light and hope and a return to the outer world is definitely in order. Doesn’t really matter what else is going on, I agree with you, it is embedded deep in our psyches. Your plan sounds lovely, I hope you have a wonderful day!

  5. I am not surprised that you are able to walk a path away from the hype and consumerism of Christmas time, and celebrate something that resonates within you. I think it is a beautiful one, and your food sounds delicious! Enjoy! xxx

    • I find myself half amused and half horrified by the manic shopping and consumerism on the run up to Christmas… and then I’m sad, because I know many people never find the magic they hope to around the festive period.

  6. I like the sound of your celebration very much! I will be thrilled at the solstice, to get even a few minutes more light a day!

  7. … and let us not forget the bowl of at least 25 passionfruit waiting for me to remove the pulp and freeze it. You’re right, the tropics do reduce the impact of shorter and longer days, but it’s nice when the very early mornings are lighter. Sending you a virtual mango; wish it could be the real thing but it wouldn’t survive the trip. Oh, and I have a baby custard apple coming along on my baby tree – it’s about 3/4 inch across now. Wishing you a happy Turn of the Year.

  8. Happy turning of the year. I celebrate the return of the light with you.

  9. I’m always in tune with the changing seasons. I love that you celebrate the solstice. Enjoy. It’s upon us, and then the light slowly returns. xo

    • I’ve just put the bread dough to rise and now I’m going to make biscuits and white chocolate cheesecake… I see to be spending an awful lot of time in the kitchen at the mement

  10. I love the idea of celebrating the Solstice – and we acknowledged it ourselves this year, as the turning point to bringing the light back into our lives 🙂

    I’m definitely in envy mode where picnicing in the Limery is concerned – a great way to getting a bit of sunshine, ‘though it has been overcast a lot today, hasn’t it? 😦

    We hope you’ve enjoyed today so far, and wish you Health, and Happiness, for 2017 🙂 x x x


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