Early Solstice Shenanigans

Well that's come round quick again,
Litha Sun

I can't believe that Litha - Summer Solstice is nearly here again. 
As we take time to honour the longest day, we see the Goddess ripe and fertile as the land is abundant with crops and flowers, before She becomes the Mother at harvest. The sun is high and strong in the sky, particularly so these last couple of weeks! After my walking exertions of the last few months I planned a few more chilled out activities to celebrate midsummer.
Rounding up my oldest friend Lu - I hasten to add that I mean longevity of friendship not that she is ancient, just to clarify - I persuaded her that she really did want to go camping for the night at small Solstice event at Eastbourne. East bourne - I just can't seem to stay away at the moment, no walking though this week!
Looking Glorious Ladies!
Rounding up enough gear for a small army not just two crazy pagan hippy friends away for a night, we pitched up our tents on a blindingly hot Saturday morning and joined in the celebrations. After a simple but beautiful opening ceremony played out by two of the Drummers where the Holly King and The Oak King duelled and played out their yearly battle, we held a simple ritual welcoming the sun and the longest day. Lots of drumming and morris dancing ensued as well as these glorious ladies - Rasheeka Belly Dance shaking and swinging their hips and generally celebrating all things Goddessy!
I did kind of worry that Lu who after we had watched the fabulous drumming previously at Beltain and again earlier in the day had suggested that we start a drumming group might suddenly decide we should start belly dancing too, but thankfully and mercifully not. Shhhh - No one remind her!
Browsing round the stalls, a beautiful young lady
Summer Goddess
asked me if I wanted my face painted, usually I would say no, for some unknown reason I said go on then. 

First victim of the day apparently! When asked what I wanted, I suggested something Goddessy and said I was feeling corn and poppies. With relish she started work and with assurances that she wasn't going to give me  a 'spiderman' I let her do her thing. 
I was amazed with what she did, she enjoyed the free rein of being creative and said that she had really felt channelled when doing it. I would never have picked red, the glitter or the boldness of it, but I was so delighted  - especially with the golden goddess symbol on my forehead that I left my glasses off and spent the rest of the day walking round in a myopic haze so as not to spoil it! Fabulous!
And yes I did remember to take it off before I went to bed so I didn't wake up looking like I'd been to an all night rave with half of it in the pillow!
Sun Setting On The Day
Listening to music and watching fire dancing while the sun set, we enjoyed the rest of the evening chatting, chilling, enjoying a few cold ciders and enjoying the atmosphere.
After a surprisingly good nights sleep, amazing what you can achieve with an inflatable mattress, eye mask and ear plugs, we slowly packed up and decided to go and see the sea at nearby Pevensey Bay for a little while before heading home.

Back in time for Father's Day, I went to spend some time with my lovely Dad. A wonderful, warm, funny and hard working family man who is at his happiest pottering in the garden, walking his dog or spending time with his family - never far from home. He has to be one of the kindest and biggest hearted people I know - never a bad word to say about anybody. He also had the sense to fall in love with and marry a strong wonderful woman and gave the precious gift of a loving and happy childhood to me and to my children. Thank You Pops x x 
Due to work commitments, we didn't see
A Mum-Dad Pressie
the kids until yesterday and were blessed to have the whole tribe round for an evening, the kids spoiling Dad - as they call my himself, who has more than earned his Step Dad stripes over the last 12 years and Grandad with presents. We had an evening full of fun, laughter, plenty of food and a variety of ice creams, watching Dan and Sophie daring each other to get in and 'swim' in the by then cold Paddling pool  - it is a big one in case you have visions of two grown adults in a 3 feet round one!  Memories made and stored to treasure.

My daughter pulled me aside and gave me this lovely candle, when I asked her what that was for she told me it was for being her dad before Dad joined our lives. That was choke making I can assure you! Bless her heart. Exactly the Goddess colours for Litha and smells of the sea which connects with Goddess imagery and symbolism for Litha - which she didn't know! Perfect.
So, I'm just finishing practising and tweaking my 'notes' for a talk I'm giving tomorrow on some local standing stones, not nervous at all (much!) and then I'm packing the car up and going camping for Solstice a few miles away at a local glamping site - good old fashioned tent for me though, which I'll share with you next time.

Wishing You All Solstice/Litha Blessings of Love, Abundance and Fertility.
Have a Blessed Week x x x 

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