February’s new moon was the first ritual I’ve had in my new  house.

I decided I needed a connection to my practice, so I started planning for the new moon.  I haven’t sat down with my actual book in awhile.  I think that’s the downside of digital copies.  So I flipped pages. Looking at my main page, and the years of varying rituals.  I pulled bits and pieces, my focus always being on deciding “why I am having this ritual?” 

I felt a need to get to know my space.  Years of practice in the same space – my former house – left it always feeling a little sacred.  Here is new, unknown, and a very different energy.  I wanted to feel the grass, to smell the orange blossoms, to start working on my tree stump altar, and to learn the spirits of my new space.

I also felt a very strong pull to perform a banishing.  To shed a lot of the negative feelings I’d built up over the winter.  Winter is all about “self work” or introspection for me.  I feel like I’ve done *a lot* of introspection.  I’ve spent a lot of time in my head.  I’ve spent a lot of time feeling guilty, feeling worthless, feeling all around bad about myself.  I wanted a chance to shed all of that, or at least to try to shed it.  

Once I had my ritual and intention in mind, I went into the yard. It was late enough that the sun was mostly gone.  It’s California winter, so it was sweater weather – I set my objects on the grass, near the tree stump in planning on using as an altar. I laid out my cup, tiny flowerpot, feather, and candle. I try to keep all my basic ritual stuff in one slightly larger than a shoebox wooden box.

Most of what I wanted was in there.  I took my small glass of absinthe, and I sat on the grass.  It always takes me a bit of time to get to the correct headspace for ritual. So I sat, feeling the soft, damp grass beneath me. I listened to the hum of traffic and the drive of airplanes.  My new neighbor hood is louder that way, traffic from a closer, bigger street – near enough to the LAX flight path to watch the planes come in.  I took some slow, deep breaths. 

The ritual was slow. I slipped in and out of the right head space over and over. Sometimes it was simply the weight of banishment. Sometimes it was noise. The new house doesn’t have a privacy fence yet, so the man scrounging through the recycling trashcans distracted me.  The optical illusion of someone waking on sidewalk turning down the ally, looks like they are walking up my driveway (I found this is true with cars too).  The years just doesn’t have the years of ritual use built into yet. It’s new, to me, with years of history and growth that I don’t know yet.

I finished my working buy taking my still burning candle, and placing it on the tree stump.  I left it burning while I picked up. 

I can’t say this was my most profound or deepest ritual – but it helped me feel connected to new space, to start to feel the spirits of my new space.  It let me strip away some of the muck if connected over the past few months.

It reminds me to return to my practice regularly. Less structured than before maybe, certainly less stuff.  More quiet, more breathing, more laughing… And more quiet magic.