Winter Lights ~ The Winter Solstice and Honoring Nature

We have two traditions on the Winter Solstice, my very favorite day of our winter celebration of lights. We make a nature offering in our backyard, usually pinecone bird feeders, orange slices, or the like. Several weeks ago, we attended a "for the birds" program at our community library, where we were given our own living, native cedar tree to decorate with all natural items and bring home. This lovely little tree has graced my girls "little house in the backyard" - and is now been picked clean. Today, we're stocking it up again for our backyard friends!
Instead of pinecones, the library provided us with magnolia tree pods for rolling in peanut butter and birdseed. I loved this idea! We also used fresh cranberries, popcorn, orange slices, and all natural cotton balls. What lucky little birds and squirrels we have!

Our other solstice tradition is to wrap a fire log with all the nature items we've collected over the past season, to burn at sunset as our "yule log." (See one of our past yule logs here.) This is a much anticipated ritual among everyone in the family. We turn off all the lights, light candles and the fire, and snuggle up for a cozy evening on the shortest day of the year. Later, when it's good and dark, we bundle up and take a nighttime walk around the neighborhood to look at Christmas lights.
I had my own private solstice honoring this morning, with a bountiful harvest from my garden. I'm in deep gratitude to the sun for making so much goodness possible! There's new pictures up in my Fall Garden album on Facebook... hop over and take a peek at what's growing in my backyard!

~Wishing you a warm and peaceful Winter Solstice!~