Beltane at Blackheath

This year we acknowledged the new growth, fertility, beauty and love of this time of year in Spring by celebrating Beltane in the Blue Mountains. We are currently camped at a luscious free camp, Blackheath Glen Reserve, not far from the town of Blackheath. On Beltane eve we decided to head into a park in Blackheath for a picnic lunch, but first Anusha and I made Beltane baskets….

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Our baskets all ready for collecting flowers.

We used a simple cone design made by cutting a ‘D’ shape from a piece of A4 paper, decorated them, added handles made from tree fern stems, and stuffed our baskets with the stripped fern leaves.

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Once at the park we settled in, enjoyed our surrounds and relaxed.

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The children explored the play equipment,

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and after lunch, Anusha and I headed off for a flower walk.

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The Memorial park in Blackheath has many varieties of Rhododendrons that flower during October and November.

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It wasn’t hard to fill our baskets and hands with beautiful colour.

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Then, it was back to the playground.

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We enjoyed the sunshine and cool air, lucky that the approaching thunderstorm held off until later than predicted.

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Zubi was doted on by his big sister while we talked about Elki’s ideas for a clan based computer game. He’s super interested in creating computer games for a living, he certainly won’t be held back by his imagination!

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When we arrived back at camp Anusha and I made a lantern tipi for her candle.

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We collected strips of bark for the poles, attatched them to a circular base (made by a strip of sword grass) with cotton, tied the bark strips together at the top, and decorated the tipi with tissue paper.

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We had to hurry inside mid-crafting as it started to rain, but once the lantern was finished we headed back outside. Scott had a warm fire lit, and the children played for a while in the rain. We had planned to spend the evening outside by the fire (a symbol of the sun’s growing strength) but it was too wet.

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We weren’t very prepared for a Beltane dinner, but Scott created some golden sun fritters, and super delicious apricot filled crepes with custard, which we ate by candlelight in the tent.

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Before bed Anusha and I went back outside to leave an offering for the fairies in this little fairy house she had made in the morning to protect the fairies from the thunderstorm. Then we climbed into bed and I read some stories from a couple of Beltane issues of the newsletter from Pooka Pages (this is a great website for pagan children or for anyone who celebrates the pagan festivals with their children), and a few chapters from Little Fur by Isobel Carmody (we are a bit obsessed with this series).

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On Beltane day Anusha and I did some more crafting. I actuallly had several ideas for activities but at the moment we have to be a lot more paced with our time, as Zubi fills up most of our days!

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We made these ‘light catchers’, something Anusha and I came up with to catch the shining Beltane sunlight.

During the rest of the week we will hopefully get around to making fairy houses (or a fortress for Elki), and nature Mandalas, but we’ll see how we go 🙂

Loving Beltane wishes to you all xx

A Simple Beltane

With the veil between the spiritual world and our’s at it’s thinnest, Anusha and I left offerings for the fairies on Beltane eve.

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On the day of celebrating Earth’s abundance, fertility, love, and vibrance we shared some simple activities. Whilst cooking lunch I gathered some household supplies (a straw, votive candle holder, sand, tissue paper, glue, scissors, and a pipe cleaner) and Anusha made a mini-maypole for our flower fairies.

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She then headed outside to pick flowers to decorate our lunchtime table.

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In the afternoon we made heart paper chains, writing or drawing something we loved on each heart and decorating them with paint and pencils.

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I had a go at making a tissue paper fairy, inspired by a sweet fairy bought at a local market. (A simple and really effective activity to share in the future!)

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Afterwards I read the story Thomas the Rhymer to the children and we talked about Queen Maeve of Elfland and the Green Man. Then I pulled out all my scraps and bits and bobs and we each made a goddess or god figure using straws, rubber bands, fabric, ribbon and anything else on hand.

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Elki originally started making the Green Man but then decided his figure was a scarecrow, Anusha and I both made our own versions of a fairy queen.

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We added all our goodies to our nature shelf and enjoyed the rest of a very wet, cold, and windy Beltane by the fire 🙂

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