Sunday, December 20, 2009


I was looking at my diary entries about the first Yule I celebrated, two years ago. I thought people here might find our attempts at lighting a fire amusing. There is some minor editing but it still has the tone that I wrote with at the time, and I'm skipping some chunks of the entry because I don't feel like typing everything out.

December 22nd, 2007 Saturday
Yule, 1am

We have a fire going, and we plan to keep it going until dawn. Tall One's been tending it.I was tending it while he and mom went swimming, but it practically died on me. Tall One, on the other hand, seems to have a natural touch with fire, and I'm more than happy to let him tend it.

I tried to light it at sunset, but couldn't get it started. Tall One was practicing bagpipes at the time, and when he finished he alaso attempted. He didn't succeed either, but he did come up wtih two quite interesting ideas.

We were looking in the pantry because I'd mentioned about Fritos being good fire starters. We didn't have any, but we did have syrup. Well, we know that tree sap burns, and since that's what syrup comes from it seemed to stand to reason that syrup would also be flammable. To the contrary, it isn't. So then Tall One spotted the dried apples! (Oh, and he did manage to get the syrup to boil from the matches.) No success there for fire starters either.

Over an hour after all this fun started, mom got home from work. Using wax and some kindling she got a bit of a fire going, then went to the store to get a fire starter to really get it going. It's been going since then.

Tall One and I went through about half a box of matches, though, trying to get it started in the first place. I did learn about making fires in Girl Scouts, honest I did! And Tall One must have learned in Boy Scouts! I guess it just didn't stick.

My plan, and Tall One's, is to stay awake until dawn. It seems important to me to not go to sleep, but I can't say why. I'm not even the one tending the fire.


So that's a little tidbit from my first Yule. And no, I did not stay awake the entire night. I accidentally fell asleep briefly in a chair by the fire, but I was awake in time to greet the dawn. Tall One also wrote a little bagpipe tune that night about the solstice.

As I write this the Yule fire is going in the other room, and I hear Tall One using the bellows to help it grow.

What are you doing tonight? This question goes for anyone who's doing something special for solstice, whether or not you're Pagan.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

I've always used crumpled up newspaper as my fire starter. Someone once told me it would be better to use plain newsprint because burning the print ink is not healthy. On the other hand, how many people have plain newsprint just kicking around? So I still use newspapers.

Sarita said...

We did try using newspapers, but I seem to recall that the wood refused to catch fire when we tried that method.

Lyon said...

Dryer lint is the best fire starter i've ever seen. Vwwwwwoooooossshhh! :D

Sarita said...

Thanks! That could come in helpful in the future. :)