A Letter To A Beloved At Yuletide 1
“This bayberry candle comes from a friend,
so on Christmas Eve* burn it to the end.
For a bayberry candle burned to the socket,
will bring joy to the heart, and gold to the pocket.”
14th December, 1715.
My Dearest Margery—
What joy the arrival your latest Correspondence brought to me, only to find that you have struggled to fulfill your goal and are faced with inscrutable Family goings-on. I hope that your visit to England ends more advantageously than how it began. O, I beseech the Spirits that you would not struggle so!
Since your return to our Shores is not scheduled until the bloom of Spring, I went this morning to call upon Mrs. Ramage—the local Cunning-Woman—for her Counsel in assuring your most prosperous return to me. She said little; instead, she bestowed on me the strangest gift.
‘Burn this down to its end on the eve of Christmas hence,’ she said, handing me a small package wrapped in Rag. ‘It will bring ye and your Betrothed much fortune and success to in y’r new Life, it will.’
Upon opening the small bundle, it revealed a green Candle made from the wax of the Bayberry. When I further inquired its significance, the Wise Woman merely cackled and retired to her shack.
While I admit I am somewhat skeptical of the old Crone who lives outside of Town (some have dared whisper gossip of b’witched ways, but I pay them no mind) I must say that she helped Father’s sow last Spring to produce a goodly litter with her Charms and Trinkets, so I will do as she instructs: I will place it in the window facing the sea that stands between you and I and burn it through ’til midnight into the wee hours of the Twenty-Fifth. I understand the necessity of the bush’s Fruits in wax at this the leanest time of the year due to lack of Tallow, but was not aware of its properties to encourage favour.
O, curse the Dark Winter and your prolonged absence! I beseech you reply to my missive at your earliest Convenience and shall breathlessly wait for your next post’s arrival at the harbor. In the meantime, ’tis a small comfort to burn the Bayberry in anticipation of our impending Nuptials in June. I must say the small gift from the Crone warms my heart right now even as the snow continues to gather in the Gate-yard.
’Til the next writing, My Beloved, and the highest hopes that my far-flung Words find you in earnest Yearning for me and your home here in the Colonies. My best to you and yours at this Dark Season--
Your Loving Intended and Humble Servant,
Mr. Thos. Shedrow.
PS I almost forgot to tell you! I have set eyes on the Farm land for our future Hearth and Home. May the Bayberry do its work!
(The above is a fictional letter between a young Massachusetts colonist and his fiancée, but one could imagine that something like this could have happened three centuries ago.)
We at Sabbat Box hope you enjoy all the traditions and activities surrounding the Winter Solstice, and hope you gain success in the new year.
Burn your bayberry through until midnight, either in ritual or as defense against the darkness of winter; let it be a symbol of hope for a better tomorrow and a shining future.
Discover The Yule Sabbat Box - A Mystic's Winter 0
• YULE SABBAT BOX • A MYSTIC'S WINTER • SABBAT BOX BREAKDOWN •
Hail and Welcome, Sabbat Box Members and Friends!
The end of our calendar year seems to come faster every year. Everything and everyone seems to be in a rush: families making plans to come together, shopping and errands become a longer and longer “to-do” list, and sometimes we stop a moment and wonder where 2015 went!
Regardless of the holiday traditions we incorporate into our lives, Pagans and “muggles” alike are swept away by plans made and events planned. But for many Pagans, this time is not only an opportunity to take a pause and reflect on where we have been, but a chance to look forward. Yule itself is in its simplest state, a recognition of the Winter Solstice—the shortest day of the year—and the realization that the days that have been getting shorter and shorter over the past few months will now start getting longer. Yule and hope (and the other corresponding faiths during this time of year) go hand in hand for a reason: the days of warmth and light will once be upon us, the promise of Spring surely right around the corner.
This Sabbat Box is a celebration of that hope. We have offered everything from light to fight the darkness (traditional bayberry candles) to a simple method to divine the coming year (Witches’ Runes) and everything in between. The items we chose for Yule are a varied collection of tools and decor to make your celebration of the Sabbat even better.
• As some of you may know, as of now we are currently at our maximum membership capacity at Sabbat Box. We have implemented a waiting list for those interested in joining when membership positions become available. You can join the waiting list here.
• Do you or someone you know make a product that would appeal to the Pagan community? Are you looking to launch a product or get your product in front of a large audience? If so, lets talk! Sabbat Box is always looking for new vendors and suppliers that create unique items to feature inside an upcoming Sabbat Box. Sabbat Box is a great way for people to find out about you, your product or your company. Whether you are looking to advertise inside the box or wish to feature a product within a box, we would love to hear from you. Become a Sabbat Box Supplier/Advertiser today.
• YULE-RITUALS, RECIPES & LORE FOR THE WINTER SOLSTICE •
• ITEM 1: YULE BOOK.........$11.99
• WHAT: Yule-Rituals, Recipes and Lore for The Winter Solstice (part of Llewellyn's Sabbat Essentials series)
• WHO MAKES IT?: Llewellyn Worldwide & Authored By Susan Pesznecker
• WHERE CAN I GET IT?: You can purchase copies via the Sabbat Box Store or via Llewellyn.
• WHY WOULD I WANT IT?: Llewellyn has been a trusted source for books on Paganism, Magick and New Age topics since 1901. This particular book features spells, recipes, lore, invocations, correspondences, crafts and rituals that will help to inspire you to celebrate The Winter Solstice in your own unique way.
Part of what we wish to do here at Sabbat Box is to provide further resources for our members pertaining to paganism, witchcraft and the Sabbats. The Sabbat Essentials series are wonderful resource books and will truly help you find inspiration on how to celebrate the Sabbat in your own special way. Some may say that these books are geared more towards those new to the craft, but you would be surprised to read how much information is packed within these books, which is helpful for both seasoned practitioners as well as a novice! We decided to feature Llewellyn's Sabbat Essentials books when we started Sabbat Box, as this line of books is brand new to Llewellyn, (making them first edition prints) and they correlate perfectly with what Sabbat Box is all about. In fact, these first edition printings come out only a few weeks before we ship each Sabbat Box, which makes our members some of the first people to actually own and read them.
The Author of Yule, Susan Pesznecker (also known as Moonwriter), is a writer, nurse, teacher, hearth Pagan, and Druid living in northwest Oregon, U.S.A. Sue is a college English professor living near Portland, Oregon. She teaches at Clackamas Community College and prior to teaching, was a registered nurse for 25 years. Sue loves anything having to do with the outdoors and natural world. Magickally, she has been involved in Pagan community for a number of decades as a participant and teacher, specializing in nature magicks, herbalism, astronomy, and healing. She is an initiate and Elder in the Order of the White Oak and co-founder of the online Druid Grove of Two Coasts.
An “Invocation to the Life-Giving Sun on the Solstice Vigil” from the book (page 149):
Oh, absent sun,
the earth grows cold as we wait.
Our vigil fire is but a small spark
compared to your brilliance.
Our bones grow cold
awaiting your warmth.
Patiently we await your return
in the eastern sky.
Impatiently we await the first shard of light
piercing the eastern dawn—
the first sign of life’s renewal.
Come to us, oh sun!
For now, we wait.
Other books by the Author:
• Gargoyles (New Page)
• Crafting Magick with Pen and Ink (Llewellyn)
• The Personal Retreat (Llewellyn)
• ANCIENT ALCHEMY FRANKINCENSE, MYRRH & VANILLA • HANDMADE RITUAL SOAP •
• ITEM 2: RITUAL SOAP 6.5oz.......$6.50
• WHAT: Ancient Alchemy Handmade Cold Processed Soap
• WHO MAKES IT?: Alchemy and Ashes
• WHERE CAN I GET IT?: The Alchemy and Ashes Store or the Sabbat Box Store.
• WHY WOULD I WANT IT?: Perfect to use for ritual bathing prior to working magick, meditation or ritual.
This handmade fragrant, cold processed soap, is made with olive, coconut, palm, an caster oil, as well as frankincense, vanilla, myrrh powder, patchouli, cedarwood, benzoin, and clary sage—all herbs of which correspond to purification, protection and consecration. Use your Ancient Alchemy handmade soap for ritual bathing prior to working magick, meditating or ritual. Alchemy & Ashes is located in Land ‘O Lakes, Florida and specializes in vintage decor and antiques as well as witchcraft supplies and apothecary products. The owner of Alchemy and Ashes uses the finest ingredients to craft her apothecary products and also uses traditional methods and techniques, which lead to a superior end product. Each cold processed soap goes through a 30 day "curing process," in which the hand crafted ingredients and components become soap.
Ancient Alchemy soap is one of Alchemy and Ashes best sellers, and for good reason! It smells amazing and it comes in a very large and generous 6.5 ounce bar, which will last you quite some time. Be sure to stop on by their Etsy store and see their other amazing apothecary products available.
• ETSY SHOP: https://www.etsy.com/shop/AlchemyAshes
• WEBSITE: http://alchemyandashes-com.webs.com
• AUTHENTIC HAND-DIPPED BAYBERRY SPELL CANDLES •
• ITEM 3: SPELL CANDLES.........$12.00
• WHAT: Hand Dipped Bayberry Wax Spell Candles (Custom Made For Sabbat Box)
• WHO MAKES IT?: Custom made by "The Candle Store" specially for Sabbat Box.
• WHERE CAN I GET IT?: The Sabbat Box Store
• WHY WOULD I WANT IT?: Bayberry Candles have been gifted and burned for centuries as a tradition during the Yule Season.
Since bayberry candles were costly to produce and expensive to purchase, one was considered to be blessed with prosperity and luck if they could afford to spend the money on such a luxury item. Along with this, it was easy to see why bayberry candles quickly became a symbol of prosperity and luck, which ultimately started the tradition of gifting the candles during the winter to family and friends, with the hopes that you would be bestowing luck and prosperity to the recipient.
Even though someone may have received a bayberry candle as a gift, it was common to only burn the candles during the most special of occasions, cherishing the candles for what they where. It is also quite easy to see where the old saying about bayberry candles actually comes from..."For a bayberry candle burned to the socket, brings joy to the heart and gold to the pocket."
• Use when working prosperity spells or prosperity candle magick.
• Burn when working magick pertaining to longevity, happiness and family.
• Burn when working luck magick.
• Burn as an offering to the divine when working any type of magick.
• Burn during the Solstice as a symbol of the return of the sun.
• Burn during New Year's Eve or New Year's day to "usher" prosperity into the new year.
• HAND BURNED & HAND STAINED WITCHES' RUNES •
• ITEM 4: WITCHES' RUNES.........$15.99
• WHAT: Handmade Witches' Runes with 5x7 inch black satin bag and info sheet.
• WHO MAKES IT?: Dragon Oak - Dragonoak.com
• WHERE CAN I GET IT?: You can purchase via Dragon Oak or via the Sabbat Box Store.
• WHY WOULD I WANT IT? Witches Runes are a simplified rune system for divination and a good introduction to the practice of casting runes for divination and rune magick.
These beautiful, hand-burned and hand stained Witches’ Runes are a unique tool that any mystic or Pagan can use for divination during the Solstice. Each witches' rune set is cut together from wood of the same contiguous branch to assure continuity with the energy and the spirit of the tree. Each rune is hand stained with all natural linseed oil to seal them and then air-dried, allowing all methods of the elements to take place in their creation. Located in Missouri, Dragon Oak has been making rune sets and divination products for over twenty years. This particular rune set is based on the runes described by Patricia Crowther in her book Lid Off The Cauldron. Each rune set comes with an informational sheet and includes a 5x7 inch black satin bag to hold and protect them.
• HANDMADE CINNAMON BESOM YULE ORNAMENTS •
• ITEM 5: YULE ORNAMENT.........$3.50
• WHAT IS IT: Handmade cinnamon besom Yule tree ornament with pentacle.
• WHO MAKES IT?: Sabbat Box (exclusive item)
• WHERE CAN I GET IT?: The Sabbat Box Store.
• WHY WOULD I WANT IT?: If you have a Yule tree or decorate for the Solstice, this rustic besom will provide a tiny aromatic addition to your home, and add a mystic feel.
There are many traditions surrounding Yule that have been “borrowed” by other cultures and faiths; one of the most common traditions we tend to share is decorating a tree. We wanted to help bring a “mystic” feel to your Yule tree with these handmade cinnamon broom Yule tree ornaments. Each besom is handmade and dipped in real cinnamon essential oil. Your ornament will surely fill the room with a warm winter scent often recognized as a correspondence to prosperity magick. Don’t have a tree or do you not decorate one? Use your cinnamon besom as a protective talisman for your home. Simply hang it above the inside of your front door for protection and to keep evil from entering. You could also place your besom atop your altar, in a drawer, or in your car as well.
• FRANKINCENSE AND MYRRH RESIN INCENSE •
• ITEM 6: RESIN INCENSE.........$3.00
• WHAT IS IT?: Frankincense and Myrrh resin incense 3/4 oz.
• WHO MAKES IT?: Mother Nature
• WHERE CAN I GET IT?: You can purchase at the Sabbat Box Store.
• WHY WOULD I WANT IT?: It’s not a coincidence that in the Bible, the Christian nativity story included mention of these two luxurious substances as kingly gifts. Frankincense and Myrrh resins are ancient forms of incense used for millennia, during this time of the year.
An important part of casting circle, working magick, or even meditating is making sure your ritual space is consecrated and “spiritually cleansed.” One way to cleanse such a space is by burning resins. Frankincense and myrrh have been used for thousands of years by people for purification and its cleansing properties. It was used as far back as the time of the ancient Egyptians, prior to their rites and was even mentioned in the Bible as a gift from the Magi (“wise men”) to Jesus after his birth. Use these ancient resins during your Solstice rituals as a way to connect with the past and purify the present.
• Frankincense: A masculine resin with solar properties and corresponds to the element of fire. Frankincense is used for protection, spirituality, exorcisms and to honor the divine. It is said that when frankincense is burned, it releases strong vibrations that help to "uplift" an area and drive away evil and negativity. Place frankincense inside a sachet for luck and burn on charcoal for spiritual growth.
• Myrrh: A feminine resin with lunar properties and corresponds to the element of water. Myrrh is used for protection, exorcism and spirituality. When burned as incense, myrrh purifies the area and lifts vibration. Usually not burned by itself, myrrh tends to raise the vibration of other incense it is being burned with. Use myrrh to also consecrate, cleanse and bless objects or places.
• MOON CONE INCENSE BY HEM •
• ITEM 7: CONE INCENSE.........$2.00
• WHAT: The Moon hand rolled cone incense by HEM
• WHO MAKES IT?: HEM
• WHERE CAN I GET IT?: Via the Sabbat Box Store, or most metaphysical suppliers
• WHY WOULD I WANT IT?: The moon is a vibrant symbol of the hope of light during the darkest point in the year. This incense will help one to symbolically connect with that light and hope during the Solstice.
Embrace the darkest night of winter by the light of the moon with these handmade cone incense by HEM. Perfect for the Winter Solstice as it adds to the symbolism of the darkest part of the year. Though it may be dark, the light of the moon will always be existent until the longer days come back around.
We chose to feature the moon cone incense by within the Yule Sabbat Box because its scent will help to fill the room with an intoxicating aroma of mystical magick. Each pack of moon cone incense comes with 10 cones and a small metal cone holder, which is more then plenty to facilitate your magical sabbat workings. Warning: always burn incense in a high heat proof vessel. Never leave incense unattended.
• PACKING & SHIPPING •
PACKING & SHIPPING: Part of the costs of your box include the box and the packing material itself. The items listed below account for a good portion of the overall costs for the Yule Sabbat Box. Each Yule Sabbat Box is lined with paper padding and wrapping to add to the surprise of what we’ve curated for you. Shipping is included in the total price. The average cost to ship Sabbat Boxes is roughly $8.00. With that being said, we here at Sabbat Box wish to be as environmentally friendly that we can be and do our best to source packing supplies and material from companies that have the same beliefs we do, in that we want to make as little of an impact as possible on the environment.
BOXES: Your boxes where made from high quality corrugated paper and are 100% recyclable. Try to find another use for your box. They are 9x9x3 on the inside. You could decorate your box to hold some magical supplies or use it to again to ship something to someone or save it for another time when you may need it. If you dispose of it, please try to recycle it.
BROCHURE & COUPONS: Your brochures are printed on 100% recyclable 16pt paper, which is sourced from sustainable forests.
TISSUE PAPER & FILLING: The red tissue paper is made from 100% recycled paper and is recyclable. The filling is made from scraps of recycled colored crinkle paper and is biodegradable.
STICKERS: The stickers found within your boxes where printed on vinyl with a gloss laminate.
• SABBAT BOX COUPONS •
SAVINGS & COUPONS:
Part of our goal is to provide a number of items to our members at a value far above what individuals can purchase on their own. When you add up all of the items inside your Yule Sabbat Box, as well as costs for shipping and packaging, you are saving over $21.00 with your Yule Sabbat Box. We believe this to be another good reason to be a member. Also, each box we create helps to support Pagan run businesses and their employees. Sabbat Box looks forward to continuing to stay within our mission to work with other Pagan businesses to supply products for each box.
Coupons are another great feature you will find within Sabbat Boxes. Coupons just add to the overall value of your box and are not included in the "total savings" specified on your information sheet/brochure, but definitely add further value as well as further exclusivity to being a member. Check out the Pagan run businesses below and see the great discounts our members received inside the Samhain Box. Be sure to visit their online store and help support their businesses. They really do make some magickal pagan products.
YULE BOX PRICE BREAKDOWN
• Total MSRP of items inside: $53.48
• Total Savings on this box: $13.53
• Total Shipping Savings: $7.95
• Grand Total In Savings: $21.48
~Our members helped to support 5 Pagan run businesses with their Sabbat Box membership! Unlike some subscription boxes (that only use their own products inside each of their boxes), we work with other Pagans and Pagan owned businesses within the community to purchase and supply the items featured within our boxes. In the end, we want to help the community grow and share our business with companies that share our same values and standards
• ALCHEMY AND ASHES - A VINTAGE EMPORIUM •
• EXCLUSIVE SABBAT BOX MEMBER COUPON
• COMPANY: ALCHEMY AND ASHES
• EXCLUSIVE MEMBER COUPON VALUE: 10% off next purchase (found in Yule brochure).
• WEBSITE: https://www.etsy.com/shop/AlchemyAshes
• FACEBOOK PAGE: https://www.facebook.com/Alchemy.Ashes/
• WHAT THEY SELL: Purveyor of unique handcrafted products inspired by history, myth, and magic. Shawnee is a conjurer, creator, and curator of the mystical and the mundane. Their specialty Handcrafted cold process soaps, perfumes, and other magical products ~ Arcana Artis Reincarnated Acquisitions.
We take pride in assembling each and every Sabbat Box by hand, no matter the amount of time it takes. We don't just throw your items inside a flat rate priority mail box like some other subscription box companies out there. We want your Sabbat Box to be delivered to you as beautifully as it left us, and it takes a tremendous amount of time to complete this task.
This includes folding the boxes together, individually cutting each sheet of tissue paper by hand, weighing out the crinkle paper for each box, designing the flyers, coupons, stickers and brochures to be printed professionally by commercial printers, individually placing each candle within a bag, individually assembling the boxes, individually packing the tissue paper within each box by hand, putting together and creating product packing, taping each and every box by hand as well as individually printing each and every shipping label and sticking them to your boxes too. This timeframe doesn't even include the efforts made to manage the website, the back end billing system, social media management, customer service inquiries, accounting, marketing, purchasing, networking, and so on.
We really do believe in what it is we are doing and we sincerely hope that each and every one of you can see that the purest of intent and utmost care goes into curating your Sabbat Box.
• OFFICIAL YULE SABBAT BOX UNBOXING VIDEO •
• OTHER RESOURCES, BLOGS AND PODCASTS •
• THE ALLERGIC PAGAN (BLOG): John Halstead is a former Mormon, now Jungian Neo-Pagan with interests in ecology, theology, and ritual. He is the Managing Editor at HumanisticPaganism.com, a community blog for Naturalistic Pagans. He also blogs about Jungian Neo-Paganism at Dreaming the Myth Onward, which is hosted by Witches & Pagans, and is an occasional contributor to Gods & Radicals and The Huffington Post. He is also the administrator of the site Neo-Paganism.com.
• BETWIXT AND BETWEEN (PODCAST): Not fitting in is a pretty common state of being for most Pagans and Witches, but what do you do when you’re not quite dark enough for the all-Underworld-all-the-time crowd, but you’re definitely not Wiccan enough for the Merry Meet crowd? When you really love coming together in real life with like-minded practitioners, but your schedule is dictated by playdates, laundry loads, and the precious moments of adult conversation or pursuit of some kind of career beyond wiping noses and bums? And when your practice of the Craft itself is at its most fulfilling and powerful when you are in the in-between places–dawn, twilight, midnight, a foggy beach, the edge of a forest, a space in the hedge? It’s hard to describe, but it’s exhilerating: the creative tension when and where you are about to cross over, from one world to the next, one time to the next, one role to the next. Life is constant change and flux, and in this miasma we shape ourselves and our reality. Come explore it all as we have, two modern, down-to-earth, real-life-concerns, practicing Witches, in the conversations of Betwixt and Between.
We would like to thank each and every one of our suppliers, vendors, customers and MOST IMPORTANTLY, our members, for making this possible. This wouldn't even be happening if it wasn't for our members. We really do look forward to shipping out the next boxes for Imbolc. We also have so much more in the works here at Sabbat Box and continue to strive to make Sabbat Box the premier subscription box for Pagans. We hope to continue to serve the Pagan community at large. Happy Solstice and a Happy New Year!
Llyfr & Hugh
Founders of Sabbat Box