In my tradition, the element connected to the Winter Solstice is that of air. In my mind I always see the image of a cold wind blowing through the bare tree branches, of the single leaves still left on the trees shaking and holding on until they finally let go and fall to the ground to join the others.
Air is also connected to the mind, to stillness, to meditation and to the breath. The time of the Winter Solstice is one of rest, of looking inwards. Of stopping for a moment and just letting things be. We can get frustrated when nothing happens, but that is where we learn to find our peace. It can be a time to try meditation, or meditate some more.
It can be a time to force ourselves to slow down. Stop rushing. Find what is important to you in your life. You may wish to look back on the year that has been and see what you would like to put your energy into next year, as the energies build towards spring.
If you want to decorate your altar you may wish to bring in branches, old leaves and rocks.
The Mother of Air is also the stone woman and bone woman, stripped of all that She no longer needs. She is Star Woman, sending you love from above. She is Danu, Anu and Arianrhod.
Sit with Her. Call Her in. Breathe with Her and allow Her to transform that which needs to be transformed within you. Although She might seem frightening She knows what is necessary, and can help you tear down the masks and walls you have put up.
Allow Her to help you find your way back to yourself.
Bright blessings to you with the return of the light!