Simple Ways to Celebrate the Summer Solstice & Litha.
Today, June 21st 2022, is the Summer Solstice in the Northern Hemisphere. It occurs at 05:14 EDT which is 10:14 GMT (and 09:14 here in Ireland). We’ll have just over 17 hours of daylight in Ireland today, perfect for outdoor celebrations—as long as the Irish Summer doesn’t rain on our fun.
For thousands of years, cultures have celebrated the solstice. It marks the astronomical beginning of summer in the Northern Hemisphere, and for those in the Southern Hemisphere, the Winter Solstice. With the Pagan festival of Litha taking place on Friday, June 24th, many of the festivities blend to include outdoor feasts, bonfires, singing and dancing. There are many ways to celebrate this mid-point of the year, when the days are long and we anticipate the rewards of our hard work. Solstice and Litha combine themes of fertility, fulfilment, lust, abundance, and joy, so with a mood of fun and letting loose, celebrations can be raucous! If you’re looking for simple ways to celebrate, here are a few of my favourite solstice and Litha rituals.
A Summer Solstice Spread
To begin, let’s look to tarot and oracle. This 6-card spread examines where the Sun can enhance your life right now, along with how you can work closely with its energy to ensure a bountiful harvest. Before you shuffle and draw, you might like to pull the Sun from your tarot deck, or the equivalent from your oracle deck, and place it in the centre as a focal point.
1: What area of my life is the sun illuminating right now?
2: What lies in the shadow?
3: What must I release to the Sun?
4: What area of my life needs further tending?
5: What energy should I work with for manifestation?
6: How can I use Sun medicine for further growth?
Journal your thoughts on the reading. As we’re now half way through the year, how do the cards reflect on your journey so far? Do they indicate the progression of your goals? What area needs more attention, and where are you smashing your goals?
A Planting Ritual
With Mother Earth working hard on the crops, trees, plants, flowers—and more—growing from her soil, why not give something back? You can choose to plant flower seeds, herbs, larger shrubs, or even a tree! Add a little extra with your gift by setting a crystal into the earth with it as a thank-you. As you sow, or plant, make a list of that for which you’re grateful, and send love out as well as down for your blessings—no matter how small you may consider them. You can even write your blessings on a piece of paper and bury it alongside in the soil.
Regardless of what you sow; flowers, herbs, vegetables, or a tree, once the plant has matured, you can bring some of that beauty into your home as a reminder of nature’s bounty. For example; flowers and herbs on your altar, or herbs and veg in your cooking. As you sow seeds now, and tend the plant and watch it grow in the weeks to come, acknowledge how your hard work will bring simple, but beautiful rewards.
With love such an integral part of the Summer Solstice, and Litha, why not indulge yourself with a little self-love?
Exfoliating Scrub with Lemon & Rosemary
This is a loose scrub, ideal for feet and hands. Scented with lemon and rosemary, it brings the uplifting scent of summer, ideal for boosting your mood. Rosemary brings healing and protection, while lemon helps to remove negative energy and promote joy.
What you’ll need:
1 cup of finely ground sea salt (the coarser the salt, the harder it will be on your skin!)
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
1½ tablespoons of olive oil
1 sprig of fresh rosemary
A large glass container with a lid
A bowl for mixing
How to Make:
Mix together the salt and lemon juice.
Add in the zest and stir.
Chop the rosemary into fine pieces and add to the mix. Leave off the woody stem if it’s not supple.
Place the mixture in your clean jar and seal. Give it a shake to ensure even blending, and place in a fridge or somewhere cool. It’s best to leave it sit for a couple of days to allow the scents develop.
Once you’re ready, scoop out what you need and using your hands, gently rub it into hands, feet, or knees. Rinse well with warm water and pat dry.
Soothing Bath Oil Blend
This blend is ideal for the bath at the end of a busy day, but if you’re facing into a hectic day, rub a couple of drops onto your wrist for a relaxing scent.
What You’ll Need:
A small rose quartz crystal
1 cup of carrier oil (to dilute the essential oil)
A glass bottle with a lid
5 drops of lavender essential oil
3 drops of frankincense essential oil
2 drops of sandalwood essential oil
How to Make:
Pour the carrier oil into the clean glass bottle.
Add the essential oils, pop on the lid, and gently shake to blend.
Add the crystal to the bottle.
If you have the patience, allow it to sit for a few days so the oils can blend and the scent develop.
To use add 3 – 5 drops to your bath, or dab 1 – 2 drops on your wrist for scent.
Subtle Solstice Glamour
Another way to tune into Solstice energy is with clothes, accessories, and even make-up. If a grand celebration isn’t possible, you can give a more subtle nod to the day by adding a splash of gold or yellow to your outfit. A shirt, scarf, tie, jewellery, nail varnish or even eye-shadow can reflect a sparkle of the solstice energy.
Why not treat yourself with flowers? Celebrate with a colourful bouquet, or a single stem yellow rose, a sunflower, or even a daisy from the wild. Placed on your work desk, kitchen table, or wherever you’ll see it throughout the day your floral tribute will bring a subtle boost of sunshine.
If you’re a fan of crystals, choose red or yellow stones for your companions today. Crystals can be worn as jewellery, slipped into a pocket, bra, or carried in a purse. Sunstone, Carnelian, Yellow & Red Jasper, Citrine, and Tiger’s Eye are just a few you could use to celebrate between now and Litha.
Lemon Drizzle Cake
If you’re handy with flour, eggs, and sugar, here’s a simple recipe for a delicious Lemon Drizzle Cake. I promise you’ll taste sunshine in every bite!
What You’ll Need:
For the cake:
250g butter, plus extra for greasing the tin.
250g caster sugar
4 medium eggs
250g self-raising flour
Zest of 3 medium lemons.
For the drizzle:
100 g Icing sugar
The juice from the 3 lemons
Preheat oven to 160C
Grease the loaf tin with butter and line with baking paper.
Place all the cake ingredients into a bowl and beat until smooth.
Spoon into the tin and smooth out. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean. (Resist the temptation to open the oven before 40 minutes or the cake may sink!)
While it’s baking, make the drizzle.
Mix the icing sugar with as much lemon juice as necessary to make a thin paste. Add the liquid bit by bit so the paste stays smooth.
Once the cake has baked, but is still warm in the tin, use a skewer to poke holes all over it.
Pour the lemon drizzle all over and allow to sink into the holes and dribble down the sides.
Stick on the kettle, make your favourite cuppa, cut a large slice, and enjoy!!
I hope you’ve enjoyed these easy ways to celebrate this season of fertility, light, and abundance. If you have any rituals you’d like to share, I’d love to hear from you. Simply email me at firstname.lastname@example.org Likewise, if there’s a topic you’d like to see featured on the blog, or would like to write a guest blog article, reach out to me. Our creative community is wide and deep, so don’t be shy! The more we share our wisdom and experiences, the more we spread the love.