Groundhogs, Saints, and Bonfires: February Festivals of Spring

Campfire in the winter forest

(PCM) By the time February rolls in, many of us here in the northern hemisphere are tired of snow, and cold, and scraping our cars off every morning. We’ll be waiting with frosted breath to find out if Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow – will spring make an early entrance, or are we condemned to six more weeks of winter blahs?

While the groundhog is a newish American pop culture hero, we humans have a long tradition of being sick and tired of winter halfway through it. Christian Candlemas, also known as the Feast of the Presentation, is observed forty days after Christmas. Candlemas is said to have roots in the Roman Lupercalia, an agricultural festival held in mid-February. Then there’s St. Brigid’s Day on February 1st – the Catholic feast day in honor of Ireland’s premiere patroness, who also has roots in a pagan past.

Imbolc was the Celtic mid-winter holiday, celebrated between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox. Imbolc (old Irish for “in the belly”) marked the start of lambing season and other signs of returning spring, and was linked to Brigid, a mother goddess and patron of livestock, healing, and artistry.

Brigid the Saint and her mythic pagan namesake remain important figures in Ireland and the Irish diaspora in the U.S. and elsewhere. Both the nun and the goddess are associated with fire: a perpetual flame in memory of St. Brigid is kept alive in County Kildare, Ireland, while modern Celts, Wiccans, and other Neo-pagans mark the festival with bonfires or candle rites.

No matter who you are, February 1st is a perfect time to warm your heart with thoughts of spring. Why not snuggle up in front of the fireplace tonight, or light some candles and make some pre-Valentine’s day romance? Get in the spirit with a hot toddy or Irish coffee, or get inspired: write a poem, crochet a new scarf, paint a picture – how about something with flowers in it? After all, spring is on its way: no matter what that groundhog has to say.

Groundhogs, Saints, and Bonfires: February Festivals of Spring was contributed by a Myth

Minnesota Residents Are Literally Freezing Their Pants Off!


(PCM) As many have heard on the news or are currently experiencing themselves, temperatures especially in states such as Minnesota have dropped to well below 10 degrees.  Despite the brutally cold weather conditions, some Minnesota residents have decided to have a little fun and let people know that yes, they are literally freezing their pants off!

Residents are now taking their jeans and freezing them in their front yards as lawn sculptures! Definitely have to give them points for creativity! It is so brutally cold that the pants are actually completely holding their shape and are able to completely stand-up on their own.

The residents are running their jeans through the washing machine and then taking them out just before the spin cycle. They then take them outside where they immediately begin to freeze and can then be placed standing up in the yard!

This makes us cold just thinking about it, but we must admit it’s pretty clever and a way to make light of brutal weather situation despite being a little bit unsettling!

Minnesota Residents Are Literally Freezing Their Pants Off! was contributed by a Myth

Five Planets Will Be Visible From The Earth At The Same Time


(PCM) Astronomy fans are in lucky and hopefully will have their telescopes ready, as you will be able to view the planets Mercury, Venus, Saturn, Mars and Jupiter all at the same time from planet Earth.

Beginning on Wednesday, January 20 the planets will make their appearance all together and will remain visible for about a month long time frame. This event marks the first time that all five planets have been visible at the same time in the past 10 years. However, according to researchers, we will not have to wait another 10 years for this phenomenon to occur, as another five planet showing will occur in August of this year.

Individuals who reside in the mid-to-northern latitudes can see Mercury best about an hour and half before dawn. In the Southern Hemisphere, it’s about two hours before sunrise. It also looks like Feb. 7 will be the best day for viewing.

Five Planets Will Be Visible From The Earth At The Same Time was contributed by a Myth

Last Full Moon Of The Season Will Occur On Christmas Night


(PCM) A full moon on Christmas hasn’t occurred since 1977, however that will change this year when the moon will reach full size on Christmas Day at 6:11 am EST. According to the predicted forecast at this time there should be very little cloud cover and no fog, so the Christmas full moon should be completely visible to all … maybe even Santa Claus himself! It will be best viewed on Christmas Eve into Christmas morning here in The States.

The next full moon that is predicted to occur on Christmas Day will not happen again until the year of 2034. A December full moon is generally referred to as “The Long Night Moon” or the “Cold Moon”. The Christmas full moon will be the last full moon of this year, as well as, the very first for this winter season.

According to the Farmer’s Almanac, December’s full moon is referred to as the “Cold Moon” because “it is the month when the winter cold fastens its grip and the nights become long and dark”. The upcoming  winter solstice occurs at 11:49 p.m. Dec. 21, which is at or near the longest night of the year before the days start to lengthen again.

Last Full Moon Of The Season Will Occur On Christmas Night was contributed by a Myth

Hot, Humid Weather Affects More Than Just Your Hair

Everyone knows that humidity wreaks havoc on your hair, but did you know that it also affects your skin? Hot, humid air can take a toll on your skin, reducing the body’s natural moisturizing oils and causing dry skin. But at the same time, the sticky, humid weather makes your skin sweat more, and sweat that doesn’t evaporate can lead to clogged pores, acne and other unsightly problems. So what can you do about it?

Make sure you’re showering every morning to rid your body of any sweat and moisture produced overnight. Wash your face first thing in the morning and again at night, and if you find that you’re especially oily mid-afternoon, wash it again or keep face wipes on hand at work. Blotting sheets will also help clear some of the moisture and oil from your face.

You also want to make sure you’re still moisturizing. You might think moisture is the last thing your skin needs in the summer, but in high humidity, the skin’s production of natural moisturizing oils is reduced. This can lead to dryness, inflammation and skin flaking. According to Eucerin, our skin becomes more permeable in hot, humid weather, allowing more moisture to escape. Make sure you continue your moisturizing routine, applying lotion after your shower and using a light face moisturizer with SPF.

If you’re house is particularly humid, or if you’re not big on air conditioning, invest in a quality dehumidifier. They can make a big difference, even if you just turn it on while you’re sleeping!

The post Hot, Humid Weather Affects More Than Just Your Hair also appeared on PCM Lifestyle.

Panic Erupted When A Giant Red Ball Rolled Through The Streets In Toledo!


(PCM) As a result of some severe weather that took place in the Toledo, Ohio area a giant, inflatable red ball was wedged loose from it’s place as part of an art exhibit in the area and began rolling down the street. The incident struck up a panic with Toledo residents caused several individuals to make an attempt to chase it down.

The giant red ball, which is 15 feet wide and 250 pounds, is part of an art installation projects called “RedBall Project” and consists of material that is similar to that of a rubber life raft. The installation was currently on display at the Toledo Museum Of Art.

Strong winds from a passing thunderstorm were able to knock the giant red ball loose and cause it to roll away down the street. Eventually, museum staff and a few other individuals were able to catch the ball and get it deflated before it could cause any real destruction. There were no injuries reported. The deflated ball was placed on a trailer and taken back to the museum for the artist to repair.

Because of the material the ball is made from it should be very easy to patch and there are plans to still have the giant red ball on display in several areas throughout the city, however extra measures will now be taken to be sure the ball is kept securely in place.

Panic Erupted When A Giant Red Ball Rolled Through The Streets In Toledo! was contributed by a Myth

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