The shortest day of the year is about to arrive. December 21st marks the end of autumn and the beginning of winter in the northern hemisphere (if you are south, the beginning of Summer is almost here!)

This is a powerful time. As the longest night of the year, this day symbolizes the return of the light. After this day, the nights become shorter and shorter until we arrive to the Spring Equinox and the return of the warmth.

For thousands of years, those who lived in the North celebrated this day in honoring nature, the elements, and gathering together in ritual. These were hard times, but the Solstice signified that the Sun would soon return, and the longest nights were now passed them. We rely on the seasons of nature, in fact we are the seasons of nature, and taking time to honor these moments allows us to connect back to our human roots. If we strip everything back, these cycles are crucial for our survival, and deserve to be respected and honored.

So how can you celebrate the Winter Solstice? You can create a ritual for this special day.

Here are 3 we have crafted for you. Choose the one that resonates the most and enjoy this special day of the year.

Solstice Bath Who doesn’t love a good bath? This ritual is perfect if you want to incorporate self-care in your celebration. We know the holiday season can be stressful, so instead of adding something else on your to do list, a bath will help you relax, cleanse, and honor the day. Use oranges to decorate your bath and to represent the power of the sun. If you have some orange essential oil, put a few drops in as well. Have lots of candles to celebrate the return of the light and relax into the circus filled bath. Let yourself release any stress and meditate of how the energy of the Sun impacts your life.

Journaling Ritual A great time for self-reflection, these questions will help you connect to the energy of the Solstice, and feel gratitude for this time. All you need are a notebook, pen, a candle, and a cup of tea. As you light your candle and set up the space where you will write, think about what the darkness means for you. Think about what the light means for you. When you are ready, answer these questions.

  • What has the darkness taught me this year?
  • What has the light taught me this year?
  • What do I love about the night?
  • What do I love about the light?
  • As the light returns, what do I want to bring more of into my life?
  • What am I ready to let go of?

Let the words come however they want to. When you are finished, read your responses over and reflect on them.

Make a Homemade Solstice Soup During this time of the year our bodies crave warmth and a soup is a beautiful way to fulfill that craving. One of my favorites is butternut squash soup, which is a nice yellow color to represent the Sun. If you enjoy something else, cook that for yourself (bonus points if it's yellow or orange.) If you don’t have the time, buy some soup from your favorite restaurant. As you heat up the soup or make it from scratch (whatever you prefer) speak words of gratitude into the soup. Thank the soup for the warmth you will receive, just as the sun gives you warmth. Thank nature for providing nourishment and everything you need to live. Have some bread to dip, and enjoy the meal full of gratitude and light. If you want a recipe, here’s a great one for butternut squash soup.

Whichever ritual you choose, as long as you have the intention to celebrate the day, you cannot go wrong. Enjoy and remember the beauty of nature, the earth, and the Sun.

December 21, 2022 — A J