Mabon is my favorite sabbat. That is, if I had to choose one. I love the togetherness that it seems to evoke, the thankfulness and the overall feeling of satisfaction. Sure, many of us no longer are celebrating a literal harvest of our fields, but we can absolutely celebrate our other harvests in life.
Typically, we’ve spent this holiday with our circle, at our “Pagan Thanksgiving” as we lovingly call it. But this year we were unable to make it. So we are on our own to celebrate. And as typical of me, I have been so caught up in back to school and work and life, that I haven’t planned anything. So we’re working with what we’ve got at home!
- Create your Mabon altar, as you would normally do. You can let your children create their own, or make yours a family altar where each child gets to add something. Our Mabon altar is typically filled with gourds, fallen leaves (not many this year), acorns, and other things found in nature (typically by the witchling). I also will add a representation of both the Goddess and the God.
- Set up a cauldron (or a basket, bowl, whatever you have on hand).
- Gather some candles (LED if you have younger children), a gourd for each family member, small pieces of paper, and writing utensils.
- Ask the entire family to meet you in the space where your altar is located.
- Begin the ritual according to your own path.
- Seat the family in a circle.
- If you’d like, this is a great opportunity to give your children a short description of the holiday and what it means to you.
- Pass out the paper and writing utensils. Ask everyone to write down three things that they are the most grateful for. When they have completed writing down their three things, have them fold their paper and place it in the basket/cauldron/bowl.
- After everyone has put their paper in, pick the bowl up in your hands and say “Goddess (or the Gods/Goddesses you wish to honor at this time), we thank you for these many blessings. We offer to you our thanks.”
- Take the bowl outside and bury the papers (or burn them if you wish).
- Have each family member take a gourd from the altar and leave it in the yard as an offering.
- Close the ritual according to your traditions.
As always: my ritual creation policy for children is: keep it simple, keep it fun, keep it short. If this isn’t going to fit into your schedule this year or your children aren’t in the mood for paying attention, we’ve also really loved this apple ritual in the past, you can make it short and sweet for those with teeny attention spans and it’s a good option when you’ve gotten so caught up in back to school, that you’ve forgotten to prepare something. Don’t forget that this is your family’s ritual and it’s all right to make adjustments to suit you.
You can also create a Gratefulness Board for your whole family to keep the thankfulness of Mabon around all year long.
- Purchase a piece of poster board and some fun markers.
- Ask each family member to add things that they are thankful for to the board. It doesn’t have to be in order, go crazy with it and fill the board with your blessings.
- Hang it somewhere that everyone can see it on a daily basis.
- Let it remind you of all the wonderful things you have to be grateful for.
Blessed Mabon to all!