Pagans call it Imbolc, it is exactly midway between the winter solstice and the Spring equinox.
In the Christian calendar it was known as Candlemas and celebrates Mary's return to the church after her 40 day confinement after giving birth. A day when candles are taken into the churches and blessed for the coming year.
Weather watchers would remind themselves of this proverb to see what mother nature had in store for them:-
If Candlemas Day be fair and bright
Winter will have another fight
If Candlemas Day brings cloud and rain
Winter won't come again
It was also known as the 'festival of light' and homes would light candles and place them in their windows to remind their neighbours they were still there after the winter weather when many times they had not seen each other due to the conditions. Women would come together and time for creating/making was once more as there would be more light to see by after their chores had been done.
There is so much to read about today and learn of times gone by and how things have changed over the years.
Our cathedral was preparing for Candlemas yesterday, I was there attending the lunchtime organ recital and I lit a candle to offer blessings to my friends and loved ones.
One old superstition states that it is said to be unlucky to bring snowdrops (or candlemas bells as they were known) into the house before Candlemas and if you didn't take down your Christmas decorations on twelfth night then today is the day to do it.
Twelfth night has long passed but I have finished my stitching on twelfth day from the Plum Street Samplers 12 Days SAL -
It now completes the set, and they will definitely be made up ready to hang next Christmastime
The last Sunday of the month is reveal day for the stitching challenge at Needlecraft Haven . An online free Christmas chart chosen by Christine for us to stitch and make up anyway we choose. This month the design was from Aliolka (chart here).
Here's my finish, the others can be found in the gallery, everyone did a super job in January
WIP worked on last week too, letters all added. Mr Kitty should be in residence next time.
A little knitting and my socks are now keeping my feet nice and warm
January went by quickly, so it seemed, but I did have a good few finishes, 12 in fact - 5 being the 12 Days SAL and 2 pairs of socks knitted - that's what happens when we still have dark nights and hunker down early and sit and enjoy our hobbies. I also read 5 books during the month.
I've updated my 'to do' list for February and added in a new chart. I was lucky enough to win this in a drawing on Jacqui's blog. Her finish was superb and with it having a little bunny on it, I just had to put my name in her bucket. It arrived with me on Saturday, want to see which Tra La La design it is .....
Jacqui has put a page inside the chart so it can be a travelling chart and names and blog details can be added so stitchers who receive it can track where it has been before (and maybe visit new blogs to them). Once i've stitched it during February it will be offered here on the blog to someone else for them to stitch and pass on.
February is the month of love they say, what with valentines day and also a wedding anniversary in our home it certainly will be here.
I hope your February is filled with love, friendship and many happy times
Love and blessings to you all