Well another Lughnasa has come and gone...
This year most of my plans for celebrating had to be cancelled due to illness, but I was able to have a nice quiet celebration yesterday with my family. We started off with a nice breakfast of oatmeal and raspberries we picked from our yard and then the girls and I spent the day together while my husband worked. We cleaned the ritual room and re-did the main altar while talking about what Lughnasa was to us. My 3 year old decided it was a time to honor the "Goddess in the earth", while my 7 year old described it as "a really fun harvest time, that's hot, when we get to eat yummy food." I told them stories from Irish mythology: the tale of Macha racing the kings horses, how Tailtiu cleared the plains, the story of when Lugh came to Tara...and we had our own sorts of athletic games, which were far more comical than athletic really, but were very fun nonetheless.
After my husband arrived back home form work there was music, although his style is far from traditional, and some more general cleaning and re-arranging, before dinner. The main course was roast chicken, fresh veggies from the local farmer's market and oat bread (from the bakery down the street) with honey. And after all that cooking and good food, the children's favorite part of the meal was the orange frosted sugar cookies we had for dessert. A plate was made up as an offering to the Gods and another for the daione sidhe and later on both were placed outside on the outdoor altar. The ritual itself was private and simple.
I'm left today reflecting on my own harvest this year, on the things that have gone according to plan and the things that have decidedly not. I always find that Lughnasa ends up being a period of introspection for me, perhaps because I don't have much of a physical harvest in terms of planting and reaping. As I see the world around me ripening and offering up it's abundance to those able to recognize and collect it I can't help but look at the things in my own life that have changed since spring, good and bad, and about what I can harvest.
Blessed Lughnasa to you all!