A Major Oak ~ Medieval Days

I have not been around Blog land all that much recently, partly due to the fact that as the weather warms up there is much to do outdoors..So for those of you who I have not been around to visit recently my apologies. I would also like to take this opportunity in thanking those who have nominated me for various awards this year.. Time is really flying and as good as my intentions seems to be, I have still failed to honour them, but you all know who you are and I thank you most sincerely for my nominations.

Thanks also go out to those New subscribers, the numbers are slowly swelling and I hope that you will not be strangers and make yourselves known.. I try to interact with all those who regularly comment upon Dreamwalker’s Sanctuary. I do hope you find my posts and pages of interest. 

This weekend has been a Holiday for May Day, and the Sun came out in all its glory for the weekend I thought I might share what I was up to.

So here is a glimpse into my day in Sherwood Forest.. Its right on my doorstep and I love going walks in the Woods around and about here.Trees are such wonderful beings, each one  as unique and individual as you are.

As well as walking I saw some wonderful Butterflies too which was a great surprise as some are out early. I will comment upon them and the variety I saw in a separate post to follow soon..

Please click on the photos to enlarge and find our more.

The Oak Tree has to be on of my favourite Trees.. The English Oak ‘The tree of courage and the doorway to inner strength’ representing endurance and self-determination. Known as ‘The King of the Forest’ and the King of the Trees it holds not only my heart but a special place of affection in many a heart.

The slow growing Oak can live for 1,000 yrs  and can hold over 500 species of insects, butterflies, bats, and birds, all making their home in the bark or branches. .. 

In the past Oaks were planted to mark boundaries as they are so long-lived. The Druids taught under them, and later the clergy would read the psalms and gospels under them as they walked the parish boundaries. The Oaks then became known as Gospel Oaks.

Special Oaks that were used for marriages became known as Marriage Oaks. The sky Gods were said to send  down their power through the lightning bolts, and we saw some Oak trees in the wood which had the markings of a lightning strike..

The Oakleaf was used as a symbol or longevity and strength and was engraved upon coins.. this was in later years replaced by the Lion. Oak leaves and acorns are often found on coats of arms and within family crests.. The acorn the symbol of immortality the strength and power of Nature . Mighty Oaks from little Acorns grow. Acorns were also carried in pockets to bring increased vitality and strength. Acorn bobbins too were hung on windows and above the fireplace as charms against lightning bolts. We saw many carvings of Acorns and the GreenMan in the craft tents.

You need to go and seek out the Oak when you are weary and you feel life challenges. Oak helps us reconnect with the pulse of energy, bringing its strength into your veins, it helps us let go, as it warns us about our own stubborn strength. teaching us that if we do not bend and go with the change we can break in the storm.. I love nothing better than to sit with my back against an Oak and feel its energy.

During the Middle Ages Oak became the main construction material for building homes and ships. Many of the Royal forests were planted with Oak trees to ensure the supply for British navel fleets.. Oaks were also cut down in vast numbers to provide charcoal for the Blacksmiths who worked making the armoury and weapons as well as tools.

Oak Bark was also used by the leather industry to process in the tanning of raw hides.

Younger Light Oak branches are still in demand for furniture making, doors, and coffins..

Oak leads the way when you need strength and courage to carry on. It brings deep calm and inner peace, helping you sort our  your inner turmoil’s. It restores your will and determination which may have been weakened through stressful situations.. It helps restore faith in our way forward ..

I could go on and on, and no doubt many may think I already have as I look at my word count. Below I will post a selection of photos some of the mighty Oaks as we walked through the wood … And the Major Oak in particular.. if you click onto the photos more information I hope will be there as you can view larger.. The other selection are of the medieval market and shows the armour and costume, skills of the past.

I do hope you have a wonderful weekend … Much love to you all. as I send you the Spirit of the Oak and my Day in Medieval Times!. 

Click each photo to enlarge and find out more information.

A competition of Longbow and Crossbow was had  A fine display of archery skills from both men and women

A competition of Longbow and Crossbow was had A fine display of archery skills from both men and women

Autumn Gifts ~The Pantry is Always Full.

Woodland Walk

Autumn has already begun as we feel the morning chill. Here in the last days of September in the UK we have had record rainfall as a months worth of rain fell in one day. My heart goes out to all those whose homes were flooded yet again in this unpredictable weather of 2012. 

But today the sun is shining as it once again lifts our spirits to the beauty of an autumn day, as the blue skies and golden leaves start to form upon the trees.

I’m just recovering from a virus infection which knocked me sideways for a while, but I am back to feeling better again and wanted to share with you some of the beauties of Autumn as I took a walk on the 12th of September.. seems an age ago now as I walked among my favourite Trees.. I snapped a few pictures along my walk. Blackberries 

Here are some of my all time favourite bramble fruits the Blackberry, I like nothing better than making a Blackberry Pie with a few Apples mixed in with either custard or cream..

Blackberry and Apple Pie

Here is a Pie I baked a while back as we have lots of Blackberries in our allotments, which I freeze..This one is one I made earlier Smile..I hope to add the recipe on my Recipe page shortly for those interested.

IMG-20120916-00158

 I just love Wild Roses and here are the Rosehips which are a very good source of vitamin C. Did you know that you can dry Rosehips, making a herb tea? ( which often get added to commercially produced herbal teas ) Also if you like a Winter Tipple  how about Sloe Gin? I personally cannot stand either the taste or the smell of Gin. But to make Sloe Gin go to my Recipe page I have added a simple recipe there which you can find Here if you scroll down far enough.. Hawthorn

Hawthorn grows in abundance in our hedgerows here, They delight us in the spring with their white blossoms and are full again this year of the Haws the red berries, a sure sign that the birds will have plenty to eat as Winter approaches. I didn’t know until I read in my Tree Book that you can eat the flesh of the Haws if you get rid of the stones, you can make a jelly by simmering the fruit with a few crab apples..

Elderberries

Elderberry is another hedgerow fruit well known for making Elderberry Wine. I well remember an Aunt of mine who made both Elderflower Wine and Elderberry Wine another good source of vitamins.

In my childhood and when my children were small We would often go Hazelnut picking, My Dad never went anywhere in late September without nutcrackers in his pocket Smile.. I loved picking the nuts and couldn’t wait until they had turned from their green to brown in their husks. And my childhood treat was to painstakingly shell these sweet nuts often immature to sprinkle with salt on a saucer and demolish in a matter of seconds.. I so love the memory of nutting with my Dad.. Along with collecting Chestnuts and walking in the early morning mists to find the Field Mushrooms… here is a nice link to the kind we used to find.

Dad was something of an expert in collecting Wild Mushrooms and he would provide many a villager with a heavy bag of field mushrooms, and I have known them to be as big as the frying pan . ( Note when eating wild Mushrooms you must be experienced in identifying them as there are many poisonous fungi which unless you know can be wrongly identiAcornsfied )

Lastly I took a few pictures of the Acorns.. From young Oak trees which lined the walk you see in the first picture, we noted that many had a fungal disease and seemed to be dying an many had these peculiar malformed Acorns on them and they were not like anything I have seen on trees here before. Deformed Acorns

Here are the growths on the Acorns in this Picture , I Googled Deformed Acorns and apparently its  known as a ‘Knopper Gall’ caused by a tiny gall wasp Andricus quercuscalicis. it is a recent colonist to Britain in the last 30 yrs or so, and was first spotted in Northamptonshire in 1961. You learn something new every day!..

I hope you enjoyed a little walk with me today… Its great that the Rain has stopped at last and its promising to be a good day tomorrow Saturday so I’m making the most of it and intent to go out in the Fresh Air again to blow the last of this Virus away before more Rain on Sunday.. 

Take care and Have a great weekend all of you ~Sue

 

My Healing Tree

   

My Healing Tree!

Oh Mighty Oak I now sit attuned

Your strength I now ask and fortitude

To take my problems from my mind

And help my journey, help me ride..

The storms of inner turmoil surge

I now do ask, I now do urge

That you help heal me from within

And take my love, and heal my sin

 

Your sap now do I feel rise

Looking to your branches way up high

Your acorns fall around my feet

As we blend, I hear your beat

A song you sing upon the breeze

As gently now, my troubles ease.

 

I close my eyes unto the skies

As lifted now our Spirit’s rise

The insects too they seem to know

Crawling on hand, they fly and go

The sadness that I could not dispel

You’ve eased my heart.. I can tell.

 

You showed me the path that I must follow

And worry not of my tomorrows

I look at leaf that floats from branch

It floats on wind, to follow chance.

To land in stream and float on down

Your rhythmic breath so soothing sound.

 

Caught up now the leaf does twirl

So too my life it seems to swirl

But I know if leaves are not shed

Then vulnerable are we to storms ahead

We have to dig our roots down deep

So thank you Oak, my love to keep.

 

Dreamwalker.

Dreams

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Sue Dreamwalker

Sue Dreamwalker

Each of us, carries within us the capacity to change the world in small ways for better or worse. Everything we do and think affects the people in our lives, and their reactions in turn affect others As the effect of a seemingly insignificant word passes from person to person, its impact grows and can become a source of great joy, inspiration, anxiety, or pain. Your thoughts and actions are like stones dropped into still waters, causing ripples to spread and expand as they move outward.. I hope that I can send a few ripples out via the web of life, as we each of us weave the threads together... Welcome to my Sanctuary of Peace and Love... May we each spread our Lights around our World....Sue Dreamwalker

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