On any given day you are most likely to find us communing with the gnomes and the fairies Under The Old Oak Tree

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Happy Michaelmas!

Our Michaelmas celebration was delayed by a day since on Michaelmas itself Daddy spent the evening at our local Waldorf School's parent meeting for the parent and toddler class and I was at a women's group at church.  We typically try to celebrate the Waldorf (and other) festivals at dinner time when Daddy is home to celebrate with us though W and I do lots of preparations ahead of time.

I'm actually pretty excited that Daddy will be going to the class with W, though I'm sad that I can't be there this session due to my work schedule.  I think it's a great opportunity for Daddy to learn more about Waldorf from someone other than me and it will allow him to better support what I do with W at home.  It's also nice that they are going to have a thing that they do together and the fact that it's at the Waldorf School is just perfect if you ask me!

Okay, so back to Michaelmas.  This was our second year celebrating and of course this year it was fun to make it a bit more interactive for W.  I know in the coming years there will be even more celebration activities that he will enjoy so much.  For this year, I kept it pretty simple.  A song, a couple verses and we added a candle and a couple of new foods to our celebration.

W and I have been singing the Michaelmas song from Come Follow Me daily during our September Circle Time and we sang it multiple times today.  It's fun now as he gets a little older he sings along when I sing a song he knows and I can actually tell what he's singing.  This evening we also sang it for Daddy at dinner time right after we said grace.   W and A helped to collect the asters, leaves and acorns that we used to decorate the table for this lovely fall festival as well.

I also made a rolled beeswax dragon candle for Michaelmas a couple of weeks ago.  We generally light a candle when we eat, so we will use this candle at meals throughout the autumn months to remind us of Michael's strength, courage and protection.  It was fun to make a rolled candle and then warm and mold bits of the wax sheets into a dragon to decorate this special candle.

This morning W helped me to make our dragon bread and blackberry pie.  Unfortunately, a particularly messy situation kept me from getting to the oven when I needed to for our poor dragon.  We are just pretending that he accidentally burnt his own nose and tail while breathing his fire....

W loves dragon bread.  He loved helping to make him, he loves the dried fruit and nuts mixture inside his belly, he loves looking at him and at one point this evening he loved eating the eyes off of him when I wasn't looking.  It was also his favorite part of dinner!

W also loved making the blackberry pie.  He helped to cut out the hearts for the top and he sampled lots of the blackberries for me.  For a while this afternoon he was sporting a little blackberry soul patch.  I wish I had the camera at that point because it was really really cute!

We have blackberry pie for Michaelmas because according to legend when Michael killed the dragon/expelled the devil from heaven, he  landed in a blackberry bush.  It's actually considered bad luck to eat blackberries after Michaelmas.  We will tempt fate and have some today since this is Michaelmas for us!

Traditionally goose is served at Michaelmas, but I stayed with our tradition from last year and made Cornish game hens again with the traditional onion stuffing.  We also have carrots on Michaelmas which is based on one of the traditions discussed here.

This year we also added a special drink for Michaelmas.  W, A and I made homemade ginger ale from this recipe earlier in the week and then let it brew for a couple of days at room temperature before refrigerating it. My suggestion if you make this is to take it outside and open it very slowly.  It probably took me ten minutes or so of opening and closing the bottle to let the gas escape without having a big explosion.  Definitely head the advice given in the comments section for the recipe or it could be a big mess.  It was lots of fun though and we all thought that it tasted really good.  I don't think I ever want to have the store bought stuff again now that I know how yummy this is!  I can't remember now where I saw that it is traditional to have ginger at Michaelmas but I do know that I found this in some of my research this year.  I also added some fresh grated ginger to our blackberry pie this year.

Here is our dragon and our St. Michael picture from our nature table.

Wishing you all warmth, strength and courage in the dark, cold months ahead!
Happy Michaelmas!


  1. so lovely!! how appropriate that your dragon is *singed*. ;) i have been wanting to make ginger soda, too. thanks for the feedback. happy dragon taming!

  2. Oh, lovely! What a beautiful celebration. Assuming that we are affiliated with the same school (???), do come say "Hi" sometime at pick-up or somethin'... Would love to meet you. :-)

  3. Cadi, yes we are affiliated with the same school...though we're just starting out with Sprouts this year. I am sure I will see you around and I'll make sure that I come say "Hi". I look forward to meeting you. I've been keeping up with your blog. Congrats on your little one! She is beautiful!

  4. Looks like you had a beautiful day...How wonderul, oh and how funny that the dragon "burnt" his nose and tail, that gave me a laugh for the day:-)

  5. what a special family festival. Thank you for sharing!

  6. I'll be back, teaching 3rd grade, soon! :-) Looking forward to seeing you.


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