After discovering the wheel-of-the-yeart over fifteen years ago, I have built a whole new lifestyle for myself based on the eight sabbats. The eight in turn are based on the ancient way of telling time, marking solstices and equinoxes, and the points in between marking the turn of the season (spring, summer, fall, winter).
Nowadays I incorporate each sabbat into my calendar by celebrating them approximately six weeks in a row. This year it took until now to tune into Imbolc full speed.
Imbolc, February 1st, is for me the actual beginning of the new year. It is the point in time between winter solstice and spring equinox, thus marking the beginning of spring. A funny thing is that once, after learning about the whee-of-the-year, I was talking with my grandpa and found out that he perceived time this exact same manner by solstices and equinoxes! Needless to say, he´d never googled about paganism... =)
By now the days have grown lighter, and it is inevitable to feel the change and look forward. Nature has turned white and powdery by snow, and the sky is glowing again with pastel colors on sunny days. As if the year is in it´s baby state.
This is the heart, the foundation, of my Imbolc spirit. An abundant source of inspiration. And the best part is that it´s all free of charge, right here, surrounding me in my daily life! No need to go far to experience something miraculous. The fairy tale is happening right here and now, and I´m part of it!