When I think of herbs associated with Christmas, Rosemary always comes to mind first. Rosemary, or the rose of the Virgin Mary, was believed to have bloomed out of season on Midnight Christmas Eve, it’s normally white blossoms, turning blue. It’s scent is said to have come from the bedclothes of Jesus, the Christ Child, which Mary had draped over the bush.
Known as the herb of “remembrance”, it was strewn on the floor at Christmas during the Middle Ages. When it was walked on , a pleasant scent was released. Centuries old books write about other uses for Rosemary such as:
- Place the leaves under your bed and you will be delivered of evil dreams
- Place the leaves in a box, smelling often, and your youth will be preserved.
- If you are feeble, boil the leaves in clean water, and wash yourself. You will shine.
My rosemary bush took a beating a few winters ago, when a neighbors tree fell on it. I haven’t pruned it in a couple of years, waiting on it to grow back. My chickens can’t resist photo bombing every picture I take.
I am starting my quest on becoming healthier before the New Year. My plan is to start eating more fresh food, low carb, and good fats. This simple dish of baked chicken, carrots, onions, celery, and a few sprigs of rosemary will be my dinner for work tonight. Add a fresh salad and this will be a delicious healthy meal.
Be sure to add a Rosemary bush to your garden next spring.
I love the folklore that surrounds herbs and plants. I often reach for my book “China Bayles Book of Days” It is 365 celebrations of the mystery myth, and magic of Herbs. It is written by Susan Wittig Albert, who is the author of the China Bayles Mysteries.