The Winter Solstice is a time to celebrate the ending of one year, the beginning of another when the decreasing days give way to increasing light and life as we celebrate the rebirth of the sun.
It's an important turning point in the year as it marks the shortest day, when the hours of daylight are at their minimum. It also sets in motion the start of the increase in the hours of daylight until the Summer Solstice.
The longest night of the Winter, the dark night of our souls. It's now when we can dream of new beginnings, spark new ideas as the dark gives way to the light.
To celebrate the Winter Solstice it is traditional to decorate your home with evergreens such as holly and mistletoe and use themed colours including gold, dark green and red.
It's an ancient practice to light a Yule Log and make a wish for the coming life cycle. To create your own Yule Log you need a piece of wood, part of a cut branch, to which you need to fix a candle. Or for those non Handy Andies simple buy a chocolate Yulelog and stick a birthday candleon the top of it. Light the candle on the Winter Solstice, making a wish as you do so. Ask. Believe. Succeed.
Master of Misrule
The Winter Solstice is a time to let your hair down and have fun. Ensure this magical day is filled with fun and frolics as it will set the tone for your coming year. Why be a misery when you can be the Master of Misrule?
Wine & Dine
It's traditional to eat plum pudding on the Winter Solstice. This is said to bring you good luck, fertitlity and longevity. This sweet and rich delicacy is usually washed down with a glass of mulled wine or, for a contemporary twist, a hot chocolate spiced with a pinch of ground cinnamon and a shot of your favourite liquer.
The Wheel of Fortune is the card drawn for the Winter Solstice. It shows that life is cyclical, there will be good times and bad times. The key is to appreciate the good times, never be complacent, because things can change. When times are bad, do not be discouraged because out of the dark comes light. Things can only get better.
This card also suggest that we are all Masters of our own Universe. We do not have to simply stand still and accept what life deals us. We can remain on the upside of the wheel by facing our fears, speeding up any recovery period, to get us back on track.
Try not to worry when faced with challenges. Bad times happen in order for us to learn and grow and to make sure we fully grasp and make the most of when the good times roll.
Main Image by Hieu Le
The Witch of the Wharf is a published writer, regular columnist for The Wharf newspaper and blogger