Yule is also know as the Winter Solstice, the longest night of the year, and/or the solstice night. Yule is celebrated around December 21st, but it changes every year based on the moon cycles.
It signals the halfway mark when the nights start to get shorter and the days start to get longer (opposite the Summer Solstice when the nights get longer and days shorter). Although, it may feel like far away we are actually making our rotation on the wheel of the year giving us longer days and shorter nights.
At Yule we celebrate the rebirth of the sun/return of the sun so we do a lot of sun related activities, crafts and decorations to honor the sun’s return.
Apples and oranges were given as gifts by the children to represent the sun. We still frequently make orange pomanders to decorate trees in reminiscence of this tradition. They were frequently decorated in cloves to provide a nice scent.
Evergreen boughs were symbolic of immortality as evergreens were so resilient. They were used for decorations.
With the sun comes light, so we light candles, have bonfires outside (or tamer fires indoors) or with little ones, crack a whole bunch of glow sticks.
Trees symbolize life so you can decorate a Yule tree – hang pentacles, tools, tarot cards, stones, herb sachets, spell ornaments, crafts made from nature, dried oranges and other citrus fruits to symbolise the sun.
Make Christmas ornaments from salt dough or cinnamon dough and decorate them, use cookie cutters to cut them out then paint to decorate them. Collect pine cones and make into Christmas ornaments, tie a ribbon on top, use glue and decorate with glitter or else use cinnamon for a nice scent.
We like to sing some pagan versions of Christmas carols. Here is a website to try out..
Bee and I made Reindeer and critter food this morning, we put half out this morning as an offering and the other half will go out Christmas eve for the reindeer. I used a wee container and oats, red sugar, cranberries and almonds, all edible for the little critter’s outside.
Bee loves to do yoga with me so we did some Sun salutations to welcome the sun. We have had a massive amount of birthdays in the past week and a half so Bee suggested we sing Happy Birthday to the sun, which was a cute idea.
I wrote a post yesterday about how we exchange home-made gifts on Yule, well one year my husband was a little desperate for ideas, so bought a Gingerbread house decorating kit. I loved it! What a fun thing to do together. We had a great time decorating them together and it has become a tradition in our house to decorate gingerbread houses on Yule, but he knows that is not part of his present anymore!
There are tons of fun ways you can celebrate Yule, these are just a few of the ways my family does.
Please tell me in the comments below, do you celebrate Yule? What ways does your family celebrate the Winter Equinox or the longest night.
Check out a fun tradition to do at Yule with your family: