AUTHOR Dr Alice Tarbuck has written a book, A Spell In The Wild, about what it means to be a modern-day witch, talking about her love for the outdoors and celebrating nature's calendar. Here, she shares some ideas to mark the seasons.

Chart the lunar phases

Witchcraft pays attention to moon cycles. An easy thing to do is get a lunar calendar – you can download an app on your phone – and try some simple rituals which most people wouldn't even think of as magic. One of them is that on the new moon, when it is at its darkest and about to grow again, you turn over all the money in your purse so that it shows its new side. It is said that helps it to grow in the new phase of the moon. The new moon might be a good time to think about what you want to achieve in the next month. As the moon grows, so too can your projects.

READ MORE: Life as a modern-day witch? Author Alice Tarbuck shares her magic secrets

Reconnect with nature

Many people have felt this year has dragged because they haven't done all the usual things to punctuate it. But if you look closely, there are other landmarks. The most dramatic one around now is the leaves changing and coming off the trees. Even in winter, when everything looks dead, things are happening; little buds are forming, weeds will weather the colder months and there are evergreens, such as holly, ivy and fir. Going outside, looking and paying attention to them can help us feel we are in community with the more-than-human world around us.

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Embrace the darkness

This will be our first full winter living in a pandemic, so it will feel very long, especially without the promise of a normal Christmas. One of the great things about Yule, the pagan celebration of midwinter between December 20 and 23, is that it embraces the darkness in a way that Christmas does not. There is a tradition of scary stories around Yule – telling dark tales in the dark. The winter solstice on December 21 asks us to have a feast and make merry: burn big fires and place candles on your windowsills to beckon the light back in and scare the darkness off for another year.

A Spell In The Wild by Alice Tarbuck is published by Two Roads, priced £16.99