Saturday, March 31, 2012

#7 Fun and Frugal Family Tradition for Spring Equinox

I read "The Story of the Trapp Family Singers" as a child (I think I was 10 or so) and I was charmed by the descriptions of Catholic Easter traditions in Austria back in 30's... I created my own tradition that year.

In Finland we have a habit of taking in twigs a couple of weeks before Easter so that they would bring out green leaves for the Holiday. In Finland the only spring flowers around are pussywillows... it's usually still full winter. These twigs are then decorated with feathers and paper chains and tassels.
It is another tradition in Finland that the children are dressed as witches and they visit the neighborhood homes with these twigs, and switch the people with these twigs, and then leave the twig to the family. This is old Finno-Ugric magic - decorated twigs were lashed (or waved... magic wand, anyone? :-D) to whip off the evil spirits, and this switching is done for health and luck. (It's practically just touching the people with the twig, not whipping.) Then the children visit the households again on Easter Saturday to collect their reward, which is usually candy, and especially chocolate eggs with surprises.

So - I have Asperger's so I wasn't going to visit anyone if I could avoid it. I decorated the twigs, and then on Palm Sunday I took my decorated twigs and walked around my parents farm and blessed every field and grove by crossing the air to the four compass points and then tying the twig to a tree or pole in the middle of the area.

Now, if you don't have a farm - and don't wish to do this in your town - just take a walk around the town and especially the parks and forests and fields around it, and see how the spring has sprung.

You could take with you a small offering, as small as you wish, seed bombs or nuts and seeds for birds if nothing else.

Bring in things to create a Nature Table with

Don't forget to take photos.

1 comment:

Heddwen said...

I love your decorations, we do the same thing here in Wales. Happy Ostara