kareina: (me)
Last year I took the hair that my knight sent me when he cut off his pony tail and quickly attached it as two braids to a strip of cloth which could be quickly wrapped around my head and pinned on. When combined with a head scarf, as in this folk dance costume, it worked just fine, and took very little of my time to set it up in the first place, and even less to put on. However, the head scarf is very necessary to cover the brown cloth to which the braids were attached, and the lump at the base of the neck where they attached, and my own hair, which is, sadly, too short to make decent braids anymore (these days they reach only past my collar bones without help).

This year's folk dancing performances we are doing things a bit differently than in past years--we are doing it as a story--two young ladies in Norrbotten have decided to travel and see a bit of Sweden, stopping in various places and learning the local folk dances. Therefore, to give the effect of having arrived somewhere new we are doing quick "costume" changes in between each dance. By "quick", I mean changing from one head scarf to another, or taking off a head scarf and putting on a shawl, or changing from one shawl to another--each new shawl or headscarf in typical colours/patterns for the new area.

Therefore my hasty braid additions simply won't work--taking off and putting on scarves would likely cause the headband to also come off, and it wouldn't look good for the dances where our heads are (scandalously) bare. Therefore I have decided to modify the braids to make them work without a head cover.

The hair had, years ago, been divided into many small clumps, each of which were glued together at one end, and I hand bundled half of them into each braid for the quick extension. Today I unbundled them, divided them into six piles of more or less the same number of clumps of hair (10 to 12 per pile). I carefully trimmed off part of the stiff glued end (taking care to leave enough of the glue to keep the clump holding together, and then begin sewing each clump individually onto a small scrap of dark brown linen, each slightly offset from the one before so that the lumpy bit where the glue is winds up as narrow as possible.

Once the glued end of each batch of 10/12 hair clumps was totally covered with the brown linen and holding together securely I then sewed them to some blue and white hair ribbons, which I had previously sewn together at one end in sets of three.

I had enough time tonight to complete one full set of braids--three strands of the blue and white ribbon, from which three batches of hair hang. Now I can braid this into my hair and I once again have waist length braids, which looks ever so much better with my folk dance costume.

With luck I will get the second braid done tomorrow, so I can test the braids on Sunday's rehearsal, and then our first performance will be on Nationaldag, on Tuesday.

edited to add: I never did remember to get a photo, but one of my friends got one of me dancing, where one can kinda see the braids.
kareina: (Default)
Back when I booked vacation time for the trip south I was wise enough to ask for Monday after the event off, too, for which I thank my past self. As I mentioned in the last post, I arrived home on Sunday afternoon with enough energy to make it to Folk Dance, which was good given we have a performance for Nationaldag next week. However, it meant that before dance I only managed to put away pavilions and other lose things, I didn't unpack any of the 4 chests or two bedding bags I had taken with me.

Therefore one would assume that I got to that part on Monday, yes? However, I managed to distract myself the entire afternoon and early evening with a computer project, so didn't manage to empty more than one of those chests on Monday. Oops.

Tuesday we had a service guy from Thermo Fischer arrive at 08:00 to install the new computer for our ICP-MS. Getting the new computer set up went well, but when he attached it to the ICP-MS and told it to start the plasma the plasma started up, and went straight back out. He tried several times, and then tried hooking up the old computer, in case the problem had to do with software upgrades, since the version of the Instrument Control program he installed was a bit more recent than I had been using. Same problem. So we contacted the uni IT department and got the new computer set up and able to use the university computer network, so that he could do a team viewer session with the guys at the factory, and after a chunk of the morning they decided that it probably isn't a software issue, so he started taking apart the machine itself. At 16:00 he called to let me know that he may have found the problem, so I returned to the lab. He showed me a fiber optic cable, which, if you look very closely at the ends, with a flashlight shining on it, and use a bit of imagination, you can almost see that one end isn't quite as flush with its holder as the other.

This bit of fiber optic cable has only one job--it looks into the plasma chamber, and if it sees plasma burning, it sends a message to the RF generator that it should keep doing its job, but if it doesn't, it tells the RF generator to take a break. It is possible that the slight angle on one end could mean that it doesn't always see the plasma, even when it is burning. If so it would explain why it sometimes shuts down directly after starting. Of course, he didn't happen to have a spare bit of this cable with him to test it, so he has ordered it, along with a few other spare parts that might be useful. However, Monday is a bank holiday in Denmark (where he is based), and Tuesday is a bank holiday here, which means that there are really only three days next week in which parts will be able to travel. Therefore he will return on the 12th, and we will find out if he has managed to fix the problem or not.

Tuesday evening was the last gymnastics session of the term, and it was, as always, much fun. Neither E. nor C. came along (one had exams, the other a cold), so when I felt too tired to stay longer at only 1.5 hours into the 2 hour course, there was no one to say "no, we can't go yet", so I went home early, thinking I would just do yoga and head to bed. But when I got here I instead sat down and typed up more Double Wars adventures, and so didn't get to bed at a reasonable hour.

This left me kinda tired on Wednesday, so I only made a bit more progress on unpacking from the event, and a whole lot more of looking at photos of the event on FB, and again staying up too late typing up memories fro the event. This left me kinda (predictably) tired today.

Even so I did accomplish a little bit. First of all I tried to take the car back to the inspection place--I had taken it in for its annual required check up Tuesday morning before work, and found out that they actually require that all of the back seats be in the vehicle so that they can test the seat belts. They said that I could bring it back whenever. However, I failed to notice when I was there on Tuesday morning that they close for an hour at lunch, so, when I tried heading there directly after work today it was smack in the middle of their lunch break. So I thought I would run one errand first, and drove out to "Blomsterlandet" (land of the flowers/plants), where I managed to talk only in Swedish to the nice lady who helped me, and on her advice bought six bags of planting dirt, two of bark, and one of manure which I am meant to blend together and fill the raised beds by the house for the Kale and Silverbeet I want to grow this year.

After I got those all loaded into the car I decided that my future self can take the car back for the rest of its check up another day; I was too tired. I must have been, as when I got home I left the bags in the car and went to bed for a half an hour's nap. When I woke up I was hungry, so I got some food and curled up on the couch with my book (in both audio and paper format). After reading a bit I fell back asleep--for two more hours! Once I woke up got the bread dough out of the fridge where it had been sitting since yesterday to let it warm up enough to knead, and then went out and dug last year's dirt out of the raised beds. We had gotten that dirt from the field, and mixed in some of the horse manure that the previous owners left. However, that meant that in addition to the plants we planted we also had nettles. I love eating nettles, but we have plenty of them elsewhere on the property--I don't need it hiding amongst my other edible greens to surprise with its venomous caresses. This is why I am trying store-bought dirt this year.

I still have one box from the event to unpack, and then that will be done. With luck tomorrow I will have enough energy to do that, fill the planters with dirt and plant the seeds, and even work on projects. So long as today's long naps were enough to catch me back up, it should work.
kareina: (Default)
Friday I managed to sleep in till after 9:00 (which gave me nearly 7 hours of sleep that night, which was nearly the most I managed the whole event--only Saturday night/Sunday morning saw more rest, and then I was still recovering from the drive south). It also turned out to be the warmest day, and rather sunny, so while many others were spending the day at the all important Knäckebröd War, fighting over which side of the flat bread one should butter, I spent my day in our own camp, enjoying the combination of tree and pavilion shade, and worked on a sprang belt in progress. It was lovely.

at 18:00 I reported to the "Youth Camp" and read out loud from a book that Sir Peregrine provided. I had seen a call on FB before the event for people to read aloud to the kids at the event, and said I would be willing, if I could do it in English (my Swedish pronunciation is still so bad I am not certain that the kids would understand me if I tried reading in Swedish). However, then I got busy with event prep, and never saw if anyone had replied, so it wasn't till I was on site and Beatrix asked me if I was still interested in reading that I thought of it again, and thus didn't have a good story book with me. So I sent a message to Peregrine, who was still in Luleå and would be arriving at the event in another day or two, and asked if he would be willing to bring something suitable, so he did, bringing a copy of Stig of the Dump, a book I had never heard of before. I had rather expected something with a more medieval flavour, but the small audiance of English speakers didn't seem to mind, and it was an interesting story (ok, I read only chapter 1 due to time constraints). I am pretty certain that most evenings the reading was in Swedish, and have no idea if they also had Finnish or German evenings (there were a fair few speakers of each language on site, of course).

After reading I went to evening Court, which started with Jovi's Pelican ceremony, which was another lovely ceremony. As we were waiting for Court I made a comment to Kaarina wondering if the Crown might decide to do yet another Peerage, but thought I was only joking, since two in one event is already quite many for Drachenwald. However, at the end of Court the Crown summoned the Knights, and this time sent them into the crowd to go find the candidate, and they made a good show of wandering back and forth searching before finally grabbing Viscount Torbjörn (who had been the first Prince of Nordmark I ever met). Unlike early in the week, when I heard a hint that there might be a knighting, and I simply knew who it would be (and was correct), for this one I had zero idea which person they were looking for (other than guessing that it wouldn't be Count Morales, who had only just received some other fighting related award just before they called up the knights), but that isn't really surprising, since I haven't really seen Torbjörn fight. He is from Baggeholm, which is almost as far south as one can go and still be in Sweden, and hasn't entered the two Coronet tournaments that Eino and I entered, and while he was in Crown, there were two lists for that tournament, and I really only watched Eino's fights.

Since I had missed Jovi's vigil the night before I went pretty much straight from Court to the vigil area, arriving even before the Knights escorted him into the tent. This meant that I was third on the list after the knights, but there were 24 knights at the event. After getting my name on the list I went back to the hall and did half an hour of yoga, and then wandered back towards the vigil to see how the line was progressing. On the way I stopped at the Fire Show that had just started (and had a huge crowd assembled to watch it). I watched for a short bit, but they were asking for way more audiance participation than I felt interested in (not just vocal responses, but having the audiance stand or sit or wave as people ran past, etc.), so I went back to the vigil tent and chatted with the smaller crowd that was there for a bit. They were still working their way through the knights, some of whom were ignoring the "three minutes" suggestion, I think. I was feeling tired by then, and decided that even though I was early in the list of non-knights, I would rather go get some sleep. Just when I considered taking my name off the list I noticed that Eino had picked up the book to add his name to it, so I suggested that I edit my name to say "and Eino", and then I could go to bed, and he could go in on his own in my stead. The people managing the book were ok with this, so I went to bed "early" (it was 02:00 before I managed to make it back to my own camp, got my teeth brushed and was in bed!).

Six hours later I got up and begin the process of breaking camp. My plan for Saturday had been to pack my stuff, drop the tent, go for a swim, help load the cargo van (or perhaps load the van and then swim, depending on how everyone else was doing), and then report for serving duty for the banquette. However, "it always takes longer than you think", and I didn't actually get any help from Eino in things like taking apart the rope bed and folding ground cloths because by the time I had finished packing most of my stuff into boxes he was only just starting to pack his pile of stuff, which meant that I had to wait to drop the tent. As a result the cargo van had been brought over and they had already started loading it before I finished my tent and started taking down the sunshade.

We had only managed to get the cargo van somewhere around 1/3 to 1/2 full before it was 17:30 and time for me to report to the kitchen, so, with regret, I hurried to my next duty and felt guilty for not being there for the rest of the loading, but also feeling confidant that the Archers had it all under control and it would go well. Serving was fun, and at the end of the feast they gave me a block of left over marzipan to take with us as road food. As soon as I was done serving I did some yoga, and then we hopped into the passenger van and started driving at 22:00 Saturday evening (the cargo van had left some amount of time before that, and the first car of Frostheim folk had left while it was still early in the day, which was probably a factor in how long it took to load the van, since those folk weren't available to help with the loading. However, one of them had a tight deadline for when he needed to be home, and naught could be done about it.

We had three people in the car willing to do all of the driving, which meant that I didn't need to do any of it, so I managed to sleep for a fair bit of the 18.5 hour drive north, 15.75 hours of which was actual driving time (I remembered to write down every start and stop time for the trip home), of which I slept 6 hours, in 15 minute to 1.5 hour chunks. This meant that we not only got home early enough that I managed to get to Folk Dance on Sunday evening, I even had enough energy to dance!
kareina: (Default)
Thursday of Double Wars was another busy day with not much sleep. I managed to get to bed after Ærikr's vigil at about 03:00, and managed to get up on time for the 10:00 Singing in Modes class by Kaarina. It was just she and I, so she gave me theory at my own pace, and we sang Itsy Bitsy Spider in all of the modes (Dorian, Hypodorian, Phrygian, Hypophrygian, Lydian, Hypolydian, Mixolydian, Hypomixolydian). She had sheet music for a variety of period songs that we could have sung in various modes, too, but since she went at the pace of the slowest kid in class, we didn't get there, but I learned ever so much. She promises me that she will record Itsy Bitsy Spider in the various modes and add it to her web page.

We went a little over time, as there wasn't another class in that room, but chose to end when Lady Elisande came in and asked if we would like to participate in the Experimental Cooking Class; apparently none of the students who had signed up in advance had made it, and she didn't want the supplies she bought to go to waste. I had only just finished saying to Kaarina that I had considered attending that class, as I have had fun doing similar things with school kids at SCA demos, but was feeling a bit too tired to bother. However, when asked by the teacher to please come play, suddenly I was full of energy and enthusiasm again, so we both did.


The handout she had prepared gave us a recipe from Das buoch von guoter spise, for Heathen cakes (Heidenische ku:ochen). The English translation she provided says:

"They are called heathen cakes. One should take a dough and has to make it thin and then take a cooked* meat and speck** cut and apples and pepper and eggs into and bake it and give it out but don't over salt."

*the word she translated as "cooked" usually means in water, such as boiled, poached, or simmered
**speck is a type of bacon


As you can see, this is a bit vague. What sort of dough? What kind of meat? What should it look like? What kind of texture are we going for?

She had purchased a variety of options, and we were free to just go for it, and we did, with very, very different results. Since my minion needs gluten free foods, and she had purchased a gluten-free flour option, I decided to play with that one as my dough. Since I really dislike bacon, and only eat wild game and reindeer if I am eating meat at all, I opted to use the pack of Renskav (thinly sliced reindeer meat), and substitute butter for the speck. Everyone else used one or more of the three types of bacon she had purchased, along with some other meat. Since I am a scientist, I kept careful notes of what I did for my version, which came out as a pie:

I cooked the entire 240 g packet of Renskav + 12 g butter in enough water to cover, and about a tablespoon of a Norwegian spice blend that Thora had provided, which contains: crowberries, alpine leek, thyme, black currants, lemon balm, lemon grass, marjoram, and hyssop. As soon as the meat was just brown I took the pot off the stove and left it to sit while I worked on the dough.

For the dough I took 250 grams of buckwheat flour, cut into it 25 g butter, mixed in 1 egg, then added a bit more water than I meant to, so I added the rest of the buckwheat flour (another 250 g) to make the dough workable. Then she mentioned that she also had acorn flour, so I divided my dough in half, and mixed a handful (what she had left--I have small hands) of the acorn flour into one of the batches of dough, plus a tiny bit more water to make it workable.

Then I pressed each batch of dough into its own pie plate, noting that the dough with acorn was a bit better behaved and holds together better. Once both pie plates were covered with dough I drained the meat (reserving the cooking liquid to take back to camp to cook grains in later) and divided it into the pie plates. Then I chopped three apples (keeping the peeling, but discarding the cores) and divided that between the plates, and cut 25 g of butter and added that to both pies as well. This added up to only a rather thin, patchy layer of solid filling across the bottom of the pies (really it might have been smarter to use this much filling for only one pie, but since I had dough for two...). We had more apple available, but not more reindeer, and this looked like a good fruit-meat balance to my eye, so I stopped there and went on to the eggs and pepper that the recipe called for.

Then I beat 4 eggs with 1/4 cup of pink apple juice & 1 teaspoon of pepper and divided that between the pies. They were still looking a bit empty to me, so I beat two more eggs with 1/4 cup of the golden apple juice (she had bought three different apple juice varieties for us to try if we wanted) and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper plus 2 pinches of salt (figuring if we are instructed not to over salt it, that implies that we should add some salt).

This time it looked reasonable, so I stirred the filling a bit to get it mixed and evenly distributed, and baked it. I was really happy with how they came out--they were really tasty. The acorn-buckwheat crust was easier to get out of the pie plates than the plain buckwheat crust. I suspect that given how little butter I put into the crust I probably should have buttered the pie plates.

My version was totally unlike the ones the others made, but so was every version we did. Some were made with a yeast dough, others were more pie like. One she did a more liquid-y batter and put the fillings in that. Some had the eggs beaten in, others, baked in a muffin cup, had a single egg broken onto the top of each of them.

We filled one plate with a sample of everything we had made and delivered that to the Queen, we each tasted as much as we wanted from each, and the rest was sent back to various camps. I, of course, took my pie, and my minion was delighted with his dinner that evening, as was my champion, who doesn't need gluten free, but loves reindeer.

After eating the results of our efforts I wandered by the market day. I had thought that I didn't need any more fabric, but the nice lady at Medeltidsmode proved me wrong with this lovely broken diamond twill unbleached linen, and six meters followed me home. Oops.

I also bought a bit more yarn, mostly to use up the cash I had left. I forgot to mention that earlier in the week, while at Gaita's music class I wanted to buy the songbook that we were using in the course. However, since they are from the UK they don't have Swish (this most wonderful payment method ever is only available in Sweden), and, of course, I had no cash (who needs it when one can just Swish?). So I asked around, and one of our camp members had cash, so she handed me 200 SEK, and I swished her the money, and then I gave the cash to Gaita, who gave me the song book and 50 SEK change. The nice lady selling yarn was offering them for 20 SEK each, or 3 for 50. So I took three, and am once again happily cash-free.

That evening's court begun, of course, with Ærikr's knighting ceremony, which was beautifully done, though I thought it a bit odd that ceremony mentioned only the belt and chain as the symbols of the order, yet after he was dubbed and buffeted and they were putting regalia on him there was, in fact, a set of spurs too, so I don't know why they weren't mentioned earlier. I had to laugh at myself when Sir Peregrine came forward with the belt, explaining that rather than pass on his old belt, which was stained yellow with age, he was instead providing a shiny new white belt with cast tokens for all of the fighting awards that Ærikr has attached to the end. You see, I had seen just that belt, and his old one, sitting on his desk at his place the previous Thursday when I was there, and I commented "a new belt?", and he explained how difficult he had had it trying to find white belt leather of an appropriate weight in Sweden--most places have only the thick heavy leather of his old belt, which he offered up for me to look at, not the thin nice leather of this new belt, which he folded up in his hands so that the decorations didn't show, and didn't hand me. I was easily distracted by his comments, and didn't think anything of it at the time, nor had I thought about that conversation or the belt at all when I made my guesses the day before that perhaps it was time for Ærikr to be knighted. The other odd thing I found with the ceremony was that when it came time to wrap the belt around his waist they didn't call forth his lady, but instead the queen did that service all by her self, and I wondered if that was normal for Drachenwald.

After his ceremony the court went on for a fair bit longer, with a number of deserving awards from the Crown, and from the new Prince and Princess. One of the most amusing awards was a Panache (Kingdom level arts) for a former Baroness of Aarnimetsä, which had been written if in a very long-winded form of medieval bureaucratic language (in this Kindgom the wording of the scrolls is totally left up to the scribe doing the work, and thus no two are ever alike). The text for that scroll was so long that quite a way in the herald paused, said "Page 2", and continued reading for just as long--he spoke of the creation of the order, of the crown giving the award, of the skills required to receive it, etc., etc., etc. When he finally, and at long last, came to the end of the text a second herald stepped forward, and read it all out again, in Finnish this time. I am told that they translated *everything*, even the "Page 2". When he was finally done they presented the scroll itself, which was actually a *scroll* they had to unfurl it to display. At this point someone in the audiance said that he had trouble following the scroll, and could we have it again, in Swedish this time. The Crown politely declined.

Towards the end of court the Crown summoned forward the Kingdom Chronicler, and apologized to her, for it was the 25th of the month, and normally by the 25th they would have already given her words to be included in the next issue of the newsletter, but this time they hadn't yet accomplished this task. As she started to assure them that it was ok the Herald called forth the order of the Pelican, and the very surprised chronicler was sent off to vigil.

Immediately after court the masquerade dance ball started, so, of course, I went straight to the hall for dancing. As the musicians were getting ready I noticed a tall masked slender man in late period garb walk up and chat with them about which dances he would be teaching, and then he went to sit down to await the start of the ball. So, of course, I went up to him and asked for the first dance (I was also wearing a mask). He agreed, and stood up. He had two pilgrams badge sorts of metal pinned to his clothing, so I asked them if they were awards or simply pilgrams badges. He replied that they were personal tokens from a Prince and Princess, and then added "In the West", to which I replied "I thought I recognized you behind that mask", and he had to ask my name, but as soon as I said "Kareina" he blushed with delayed recognition. To be fair, I knew that he was on site and had been teaching a shoe-making class, and I don't think he knew that I would be there, so I had the advantage.

I, of course, danced every dance, till the ball broke up at midnight. At that point I went looking for Jovi's vigil, and found the party over by the sauna (I don't think I mentioned that I enjoyed the sauna and hot tub on one of the first evening--it really helped recover my sore hips from the trip down). However, the line was really long, and I never did manage to find the vigil book, and I was tired, so I opted to just return to my camp and bed, and the next morning I emailed her the words I would have shared.
kareina: (Default)
(Originally typed while on the road home, but edited after getting home to add links, fix some errors in time line and add stuff that I had forgotten when doing the first draft.)

Saturday I spent much of the day relaxing and catching up with people. My SCA sister, Tierzah, whom I first met in a winter mountaineering class and brought into the SCA saying "I know where you belong; come with me; here, put this on, its medieval" was visiting from An Tir with her husband and a bunch of others. We have only seen one another once since she left Oertha 27 years ago, so it was so wonderful to see her again.

The only class I attended that day was the dance class taught by Gaita.

Sunday afternoon I served as Lady in Waiting for the Queen, and then went to the evening dance class. Somewhere in there, while back in camp, I heard Sir Peregrine's kids ask him something about the next day, and he replied that he would be busy the next evening, to which Master SvartulvR replied "with that special thing?", and Peregrine confirmed that it was that special thing. Then SvartulvR commented to me that while no names had been named, Perigrin had been over to borrow the workshop, and the shapes of the things made gave him his suspicions. At that moment I realized (hoped?) that Master Ærikr would be knighted at this event. But, of course, I said nothing, only smiled.

Monday I started a bread sponge, then went to the unbelted fighter tourney, were I worked on sewing projects, and in the evening attended the Crown Prince during court, translating the Swedish awards for him when the Prince and Princess of Nordmark had their turn. However, when the Shire of Baggeholm came in to display their holy relic and declare that Wilhelm in Aarnimetsä is a saint (including a lovely painting of him in a halo), I couldn't follow it well enough to translate, so the Queen took over that part. Sadly I was standing on his other side do couldn't hear her translations, so possibly missed some of the more amusing details.

Tuesday I started the day with dance class, then baked bread over the fire and went to the end of the Young Blood tournament (open only to fighters who have first been authorized during the past three years) and then caught part of the music class. Then I put in a very brief appearance at the Weaver's tea before heading back to camp to get ready for Coronet Tournament. There were four couples entering the lists that had at least one Frostheim member, so we all processed to the tournament together, with fanfare and banners waving. Then we slotted into the processional line for the tournament based on order of precedence of the higher ranked of each pair, which meant that Eino and I marched right after the countess and her champion (who is Frostheim). So the two Frostheim banner bearers marched out with them as they were introduced and showed off the arts project they were displaying (a gift from the Countess to the wife of her champion, in thanks for letting him carry her favour). Then they doubled back and marched out with Eino and I (our Arts entry was my Prologue to Double Wars poem, which I recited). Then they doubled back and marched with the next pair of Frostheim entrants, and again for the final set too.

The tournament had 12 entrants, and was fought as a double round-robin, which meant it took hours to complete. It also didn't start until 19:00, which meant that the latter part was a torchlight tournament, because even with the long hours of sun compared to parts even further south, the event is still far enough south that it does get dark at night. My champion did better this time than he did last Coronet, and I can clearly remember 3 of his victories. They had the consorts sit in a line of benches on each side of the royals to watch the list, and the spot I was given was right next to His Royal Highness, so we had fun talking about the tourney as we watched it.

After the tourney I stayed up visiting with people till after 02:00, but still managed to wake up on time for the Laurels' meeting at 09:00 on Wednesday. After the meeting I caught the last part of the morning dance class before heading back to camp for lunch.

Then it was time for the Laurels' Prize Display. Every year when I see the nice tokens the other Laurels have prepared to give the participants I think I should make some too, but I have never figured out what I would want to make, so, once again, I had nothing prepared. Therefore I put some of my cookies into a Birch bark box, picked a few spring flowers, and offered the participants a choice of cookies or flowers.

Two of our new Frostheim members participated, one displaying a long bow he had made from a broomstick handle, with a detailed description of how he had done it, with photos, in both Swedish and English. The other displayed her first couple of embroidery projects, and was delighted when Mistress Lia taught her the difference between stem stitch and outline stitch (someday I will remember which is worked with and which against the twist of the thread).

Several people displayed the same projects as they had last Cudgel War, plus new progress since then, while others were totally new, like Beata's amazing buttons with metal thread osenstitch decorations. Sadly her class conflicted with something else that I attended, so I didn't get a chance to try it myself. Another of our new Frostheim members did make that class and reports that it is hard, doubly so as she suffers from hand pain.

During the display Her Majesty unveiled her plans for the Challenge Household: The Golden Egg, whose participants will need to undertake a major SCA project meant to take a year to accomplish to become members. I am thinking of trying to write a sestina for that.

That evening the amazing Kaarina and I were the only students in Master Otto's music class, and I was content to let them get deep into discussing theory while I worked on my Viking Cloak embroidery. I may not be able to follow much of it, but it is always a joy to see her passion for medieval music.

During that evening's court I sat with Kaarina and my minion. Late in the court they called up Sir Gilliam, to whom Ærikr is squired, and I wondered if this would be a lead in to his knighting. He did some sort of presentation on the Brewers guild, then the Royals suggested that since Master Fardang of the guild wasn't present perhaps his brother guild member and (and brother Master of Defense) Æerikr might come forward to accept on his behalf, so he did. After that business was done the Crown said that it was good that Ærikr was already present, and the Order of the Chivalry was called forward. The stunned look on his face at that moment was priceless! I was so glad to have been sitting both in front and far enough to one side to get a good view of it. Court was over after the Knights bustled the candidate off to stand vigil, and I hurried back to camp to add more wool and some fur, as the evening breeze after sunset (way early that far south!) had made me rather cold. Then my minion and I went to the vigil party and got our names added to the waiting list. He wanted to go in on his own, since Ærikr has been his biggest fighting inspection since he rejoined the SCA in his late teens (his parents had played when he was little, but they dropped out years ago).

When it wad my turn (some three hours later) I sang Ærikr Children's Inspiration by Colin MacLear, 2nd Bard of the West; and told him that the colour of his belt had been misleading for quite some time.
kareina: (Default)
Having managed to sleep for the last part of our 24 hour journey, I was awake and ready to set up camp when we arrived at 05:00 on Saturday. We had exchanged messages with the lady in charge of telling groups where to put up their camp, and she had given us permission to wake her when we arrived, so we did.

The Frostheim land allotment was generous (we later found out we were the only group to specify both how many and what size tents we were bringing, so they made certain to provide us enough space).

This was my first Double Wars since they moved to the new site, and I like it much better than the old. The last site had a small lawn next to the hall upon which we could camp, while this one has a lovely open forest (much to our surprise, the trees that far south are fully in leaf already--we had passed the "spring line" where the first hint of green branches on trees was showing at noon the day before, at Ångermannaälven). Also to my surprise, it was so warm when we arrived that I had to take off my long-sleeved shirt before setting up camp (yes, at 05:00!)

We got my pavilion, the archer's pavilion, my minion's the red Frostheim Pavilion, armour tent, and my sunshade set up straight away, along with the large elevated fire place and cooking shelves. The big Frostheim tent wasn't put up till later, as there was room in the red tent for the few who needed it the first night. The next day Master S. arrived and put up his pavilion and several Frostheimers more arrived by plane or train and got the big Frostheim Pavilion up. Sadly, they discovered that the people who had borrowed it hadn't done a very good job repairing the hole in the roof from a fire that happened while they had it on loan. Luckily, the whole event had good weather, so the repairs weren't tested.

That first day I had itchy eyes and some sniffles, possibly a reaction to all the pollenin the air, but while annoying, it didn't interfere with my moving in and making my home within the pavilion pretty.

I needed a half an hour nap around 15:30 that day before putting on a costume and leaving the Frostheim camp for the first time (not counting trips to the toilet). My first stop was to give the Prince a really tiny and very pretty scroll (made by a Norra Nordmark scribe) that Countess A. had given us to take to site for her, since she wouldn't be on site for another couple of days (due to work).

Then I found the Crown Prince and asked if he needed a reminder to help him get to Monday's meeting and if he needed me as a lady in waiting for Monday's court (I had had a message from a friend who couldn't make it to the event, but was still coordinating the royal attandants suggesting that I should). He did and I found out where and when to look for him on Monday.

I spent a bit longer visiting with a few people, but was understandably tired, so I went to bed at 21:40 and slept till 08:00 on Sunday (not counting trips to the toilet).


I was able to stay awake that day till 15:30, by which time I was completely settled in, then I got a 30 minute nap before
kareina: (Default)
I am typing this as we drive home from the event. It will be interesting to see how much I remember...

The adventure started a week ago Thursday, when Frostheim met at our treasurer's house (25 minutes south of my house) to load our stuff into the cargo van. It rained gently during that part, but not enough to be an inconvenience.

After the van was loaded I drove it to the home of our local Count and Countess (another 10 minutes south), where, after a brief visit, yoga, and a shower, I slept on their couch. The drive to her place was a bit annoying as the car had some sort of warning light and accompanying beeping that kept going off every few seconds and I couldn't figure out what it was warning me about. Therefore we brought the car manual from the glovebox into the house and searched it, but couldn't find that light listed anywhere.

Bright and early the next morning (~05:00) Countess A and I started driving, and that warning light started flashing on and off at random intrvals and beping each time it did. We realised that the reason we couldn't find the light in the manual is that the manual the rental car provided was for some other type of vehicle. However, we were able to figure out that the problem was that the car thought that one of the doors was sometimes open (faulty sensor). This expained why we had had difficulties locking it the night before. However, even stopping and messing with the doors didn't stop the sensor from deciding every so often that the door was open and beeping to call our attention to the fact.

It beeped at us all the way to Skellefteå (1.5 hrs), where we stopped to pee. It beeped all the way to Umeå, where we picked up my minion's stuff (my minion himself would ride with the passenger van, which left Luleå 5 hours after we did). It beeped all the way to Skulleberget (~2 - 2.5 more hours), where we were able to solve the door locking problem by hitting the automatic door lock button while driving during one of the all too brief intervals that the car thought the doors were closed, and then both climbing out the driver's door, which we could lock with the key instead of the button.

We spent about 30 minutes climbing up to the cave, which was a nice way to get the blood flowing, and a welcome break from the beeping. Then we started experimenting, and discovered that if we opened the back side cargo door (which is dented near the latch area) and held the button in the opening that the warning light would turn off. We tried using a Bandaid from her purse to tape it down, but that wasn't strong enough to hold it down. Luckily, her armour bag was in easy reach of the back door, and the duct tape was strong enough to keep the button depressed and the sensor happy, meaning that the rest of the drive the car never beeped at us again, and we were very happy.

The trip progressed easily from there, with A. driving ~3 hr stretches and me 1 to 1.5 hr stretches. She napped while I drove and I sometimes napped and sometimes sewed on the Frostheim silk banners that we had painted during social nights on the weeks leading up to the event.

We had decided that we should avoid Stockholm due to the time we would be passing through, and instead turned inland just north of Uppsala. This meant that we reached the home of another Countess A around 17:45, where we stopped for a real rest break (other than the mountain climb we had only stopped for 2 to 7 minutes each time). I did my yoga while my Countess A. took a nap on the other Countess' bed, then I took a 15 minute nap and then we went to a local sushi place for dinner before getting back on the road at 20:35.

We then drove to the truck stop at the ruins at Brahehus, arriving at midnight. By this time the other car was only 1 hour behind us, and we were both tired, so we took a nap and waited for them (after walking over to the ruins, which I had never been to before).

When the others arrived we gave the cargo van to another driver and passenger and A. and I moved to the passenger van, where we happily slept till just before we arrived on site at 05:00 Saturday morning, 24 full hours after starting our journey.

Wildlife

May. 15th, 2017 11:23 pm
kareina: (Default)
I love living in a house where my during yoga entertainment involves watching deer wander across our property!
kareina: (Default)
Phire, our local student jester group, got their fabric recently, so a bunch of the students came to the Frostheim meeting tonight to work on their costumes, plus a bunch of us showed up to hem our newly painted silk banners: Here are the banners are before hemming:

banners

This meant that we had a total of 14 people there tonight, which made me quite happy. I helped one of the girls make a pattern for her jester coat, using the linen for the under layer, and then helped another cut the legs for her hose. By that time people started heading home, so I never did get to working on any of my own projects, but it was fun, so I was happy with that.
kareina: (me)
I found out yesterday that Duchess Elina of Beckenham, KSCA, OL, OP, etc. is running for US Congress in Indiana. I normally have zero interest in modern world politics. I start with the assumption that politicians are useless creatures who will say whatever they think will get them elected, and aren't truly capable of making good decisions while in office.

However, Elina is someone I have always admired. She is a talented artist, makes a very charismatic Queen and Princess, she is a talented fighter who is skilled at leading war units to victory, she has written a useful book on SCA fighting explaining how gender differences at the skeleton level can translate to different techniques being effective for different body types. She was one of the people who ran the recent SCA 50 Year anniversary event, held in Indiana. (I didn't go--my budget didn't extend that far, and the heat that happens in that part of the planet at that time of year didn't appeal, but I heard good things of the event from friends who went.)

I think that she would do well in any job she had, even dealing with idiots in Congress. Therefore I did something I have never done before, and contributed to her campaign (only the small amount left in my paypal account, but still, it was something). More importantly, I mentioned doing so on FB, where a number of my friends who also know her (pretty much everyone in the SCA in the states, and quite a few outside of the US at least knows of her, if they haven't met her) expressed surprised delight at the news that she was running, and promptly went to her web page and did their own contributions. When I woke up this morning my friend Samuil sent me a message saying that he didn't know the Becks that well, but I should let them know that he was willing to lend a hand, so, of course, I promptly opened a group conversation between she and he, letting her know of the offer, reminding her that he had been a Seneschal of the College of St. Katherine when I lived in the Mists and that he had moved to York for his Master's, which experience inspired him to become politically active, so that he has served on at least a couple of major campaigns that I know of. They exchanged a few messages and agreed to take the conversation to phone calls, so I am pleased with the outcome of that bit of networking.

I have no idea what sort of goals she has with this campaign--does she just hope to accomplish some good for her adopted home state, or is this a stepping stone to even higher positions? Yet I can't help but daydream of a time some years hence, when she is serving as the first female President of the US, hosting the local SCA fighter practice on her front lawn, leading the other fighters in war maneuvers, whilst the secret service carefully checks every fighter authorization card before letting people in to play...
kareina: (Default)
As I was getting ready to leave the SCA event this weekend I stopped by the kitchen, and saw the pile of left over food being packed up to take away. I noticed that they had a 1 liter carton of whipping cream, which surprised me, since I didn't know that one could get cream in packages that large. C. tends to use a fair bit of cream, so I asked the kitchen crew if they wanted the cream. They said that they didn't, they don't tend to use that much at one go, so I took it home. 1 liter of cream was enough for:

*My friend Å to drink ~200 ml with his breakfast (he stayed here after the event on Sunday night, rather than driving the hour north to Kalix and then turning around the next day to come back to the airport in Luleå to fly south.

*adding some to a serving of rice flour and almond microwave pudding

*adding some to a serving of instant microwave bread pudding, using a sweet saffron bread roll

*500 ml in a meal that C. cooked

*and a batch of ice cream.

Today's ice cream was inspired by recipes for fior de late geleto:

Butter, Oat & Almond fior de late

Dissolve 1/2 dl sugar in 1/2 cup milk*
Stir in 12 g butter and 2 T oat flour

Pour the above into 300 ml cream, add 1 dl almond meal, and enough additional milk to bring the total to 500 ml. Chop 1 dl of almonds, stir in, and pour everything into the ice cream maker.

This freezes quite quickly, and makes 8 silicon muffin cups worth of ice cream to put into the freezer later, and quite a bit of the stuff that sticks to the bottom of the freezer to enjoy eating right away (I guess about two more muffin cups worth).

I did the math--these amounts mean that only 7% of the ice cream by volume is sugar. I like it that way. Another 21 % is almonds, only 4% is the oats, and the rest is dairy. Good thing that I saw my personal trainer this morning and go to gymnastics tonight...



*hey--when one moves continents multiple times one has lots of different scale measuring cups ready to hand, so it is easy to grab whichever type when inventing a new recipe. Deal with it.
kareina: (Default)
Lets see, where was I? When last I posted anything about what I am up to I was still sick, and my apprentice did a talk in my stead at the Ore Deposits seminar. Since then...

I recovered and my friend H. spent a week visiting. We worked on sewing projects and I fitted him for a pair of Thorsbjerg trousers (without feet), since he hasn't been happy with the pair he fitted for himself. We went out to Storforsen to admire the power of Europe's largest rapids in early spring, before there is much melt water feeding the river. (He was surprised how much snow we still had in the yard, since he lives in Umeå (three hours drive south) and grew up in southern Sweden.)

We revised and improved his CV and wrote him a couple of new cover letters that will be a good base for other job applications in his field (forestry). We cooked him yummy food despite the fact that he is alergic to milk products, gluten, wheat, corn (maize), and even oats. (I strongly recommend ice cream made from coconut milk with shreeded coconut and toasted walnuts--but watch it closely, it will freeze hard enough to stop the electric ice cream maker much faster than my dairy based recipes do).

We dropped by the Frostheim Smithy weekend at the Forge in Gammelstad, where he made a steel tool for sparking against flint for fire-starting, and I made a twisted rod for holding toilet paper (which has been hanging from a string from a towel bar since we bought the house, since the upstairs bathroom didn't come with a toilet paper holder).

We helped our friend L. go through her many boxes of Larp & SCA stuff that has been stored at our place since she moved to France to start her PhD, years ago (she has long since finished the degree, including time off for medical reasons). Now she knows what she wants to keep, what to sell, and has tossed the rest.

We, along with L. and her partner M., joined my friend W. and his friend M. for a game of Daughters of Verona, which was much fun. Three of us had never played (H., M., & M.), and they all liked it so much that L. bought a copy (W. wrote the game) to take back to Umeå.

We stayed up way too late talking each evening, yet I managed to make it in to work in the mornings. Not that I accomplished much at work that week, but certainly more than if I didn't go in.

After he left I had a couple of days back to 'normal', with gymnastics in Tuesday (first time back after both easter break and missing a week due to being sick). I had been tempted to go home after the first hour, but I had riden there wirh C., who wanted to stay the full two hours, and I am glad we did, since we ended with a silly fun game that involved pairing up and carrying one partner in various poses the leader shouted out, and C. let me be the one who was picked up.

Wednesday afternoon I spent time with O. and Wednesday evening was 'date night' wirh D., who was feeling a bit sick himself, so we spent most of that time sitting on the couch talking about what our plans are for yard work and earth cellar this summer.

Thursday morning I dropped my car off for service and to have the breaks looked at, since the "check breaks" light had come on the week before, and this was as early as they could take it. Of course, it turns out that they weren't done that day and asked if they could keep it overnight.

That evening was Frostheim social night, and C. had one last dance rehearsal before her big middle eastern dance weekend, so she took D's car to town and I borrowed O's car (which he stores at our house while he waits for a parking spot to be available for rent near his apartment, since residents are not permitted to park in the guest spots) for Frostheim.

The jesters got their fabric order so a bunch of them joined us to begin their costumes. I helped one boy cut out the base for his costume. He wanted a odd spiral of the two colours going around his arm, which we mosly accomplished by cutting the sleeve fabric diagonally from one corner by the shoulder to the other wrist and then swapping them with the other sleeve (one with a purple base, the other green). After he gets these bits together we will cut flames from the (required for this group) orange fabric to applique onto the neck and hem.

Friday morning I packed my SCA stuff, and loaded L's stuff into the roof box that my friend Å. gave us after he bought a new car recently--the car came with the box and he didn't need it.

The car was finally ready at noon, so I picked up E. and took her to pick it up so she could drive the second car, and then I pucked up L&M and we finally started loading the car.

Å giving me that roof box turned out to directly benefit him, as he wanted to ride to Lövspricket (SCA in Umeå) with us, but we couldn't have gotten all six of us, our gear, and L.'s stuff there withou the box. Even with it it was a very full car, as we had me, L., M., E., O., and Å. in the car, plus all our stuff.

But it made for a fun trip to have so many. We gave Å the driver's seat and O. the passenger seat (everyone whose name is pronounced "Oscar" in the front), L., M., and I took the middle, and E. took the back seat, where she slept comfortably much of the way, as the bedding was piled next to her so she could lean on it (had I been sleepy I so would have taken that seat, but I was awake enough to sew, so I did.

We drove L&M and her stuff home and picked up H. and his stuff (since he lives in the same apartment complex) and went to the event, arriving only an hour after site opened, which meant that for the first time ever at that site I actually got a spot to put my bed in the "stay up late" room. Normally D. and I don't start driving till after he gets off of work on Fridays, which means arriving between 22:00 and midnight, but this time he opted to stay home and relax and attend one of the dance workshops with C. I would have enjoyed attending the dance workshops too, but the SCA event was higher on my priority list.

The event was much fun! Dancing, singing, good conversations, walks, archery, and I performed at the feast (both the Prologue to the Canterbury Tales and my Prologue to Double Wars). There were a handful of new people who are better in English than Swedish (one from Romania, another from the Netherlands, I didn't catch the homelands of the others), so I didn't feel guilty speaking English this time.

Gee, no wonder I haven't had time to post...
kareina: (Default)
When people ask me where I am from, I tend to give "Alaska" as my short answer, since I have lived more time there than any other place (but now Sweden is in second place). Today I saw a link on FB to a Geographic Midpoint Calculator, which will tell you where the mid point of everywhere you have ever lived is, and you can weight it by how much time you have spent in each place.

My 36 places ) However, clearly some of these estimates are off, as the sum of these numbers is just more than 1.5 years less than I have been on this planet, but it is close enough for now.

According to my weighted average midpoint, I have spent my time on earth more or less in the Yukon Territory, due north of Dawson (and further north than Fairbanks is):

map
kareina: (BSE garnet)
As I have most certainly mentioned before, one of apprentices is also one of my Master's students. E. had been going to perform in a concert the weekend after next, but due to the same jaw injury/condition that kept her from attending Spring Crown with us, is unable to play her clarinet for long enough to take part in such a performance. Therefore she has decided to attend the Lövspricket event in Umeå with us instead of doing the concert. This pleases me (though I am also sad that she is not doing well enough physical to do the concert), as she hasn't had a chance to be Norrskensbard at an SCA event since she won the cloak in November.

She tells me that since she won't be performing in the concert, but had already borrowed the formal black evening gown from her mother (orginally purchased for granddad's funeral), she decided to wear the dress somewhere else instead. Since we had that Ore Deposits Division Seminar on Thursday she decided that was a great occasion. So while everyone else was dressed as a geologist, in jeans or other casual clothes, she was all decked out in black evening gown and hair up.

This turned out even better than anticipated, as that was the day I was sick and sent my colleagues an email asking them to please do my talk for me. So when E. arrived that morning C. asked her if she wanted to do a talk, since I was sick.

She agreed, and during the lunch break C. and E. changed the PowerPoint presentation I had prepared to delete the quick overview of a number of different projects our lab has done to focusing on the preliminary results on her investigation of the composition of two ancient Roman Coins.

C. Did a quick overview of how/why we use Laser Ablation ICP-MS for the chracterization of ore minerals, then E. explained about her project. One of the questions she got was "how do you know how old the coins are?" (This from someone who does U-Pb dating of the mineral zircon.) She was able to reply "Well, Geta was Severus' son, and only regined for three years before his brothers killed him..." (One of her coins is a Severus, the other a Geta.)

Not every Master's student would be both willing and able to do a talk to a mixed audiance of both industry people and Uni faculty members on data they only obtained this week, with no notice. Shed did, and did it well. I only wish I had been there to hear it (never mind the fact that if I had been there she wouldn't have done it).
kareina: (Default)
This time L., from Handcrafted History did a workshop on "riktigt tajta kläder. There were six of us students in the course (at least one other who had planned to attend was sick). L. commented to me "you probably already know this stuff", and I admitted that I have, in fact, helped others fit patterns for Greenland style gowns, but I have never gotten around to making one for myself, and this seemed like a reasonable opportunity. Besides, I am one of the few in the shire with a key to the classroom at the Uni that we were using.

I arrived at 09:30 to let her in, arriving in perfect time, as I saw her pull up to to door and park just as I was about to turn into the parking lot next to the door. By the time she had her supplies set up (and I had eaten my breakfast) the others arrived. She did a short lecture and then we paired up to start fitting patterns. I got the first fitting, then we enjoyed an hour lunch break, and I pinned fabric onto my partner, who, at first glance looks to be about the same size and shape as I, but oh how different her pattern pieces are than mine! Never mind that if we walked into a modern clothing store together we would probably both fit into the same items.

After we got the first draft done we traced them onto fresh fabric, adding measured seam allowances, and markings for waist, under bust line, etc., then stitched them quickly together so that we could start work on the sleeves. We all got a very rough sleeve ready for fitting by 16:00, but we also decided that tomorrow was early enough to finish that part of the process, and went home.

I was feeling tired, having stayed up too late the night before talking with O. (who never did go to sleep--once I quit distracting him with conversation and went to sleep myself he stayed up cutting out leather pieces for his new armour, but the 3 hours I slept wasn't quite long enough for him to have finished them all before I got up). So when I got home I did my yoga and crawled into bed at only 17:00, giving myself permission to sleep all night if it happened.

It didn't. I woke only an hour later, so I got up, ate something, and then got a message from the Shire herald, wondering how many signatures have been obtained on the petition for the registration of the Frostheim Coat of Arms*. I let her know that we are now only missing the signature of the A&S officer, and that we have 15 total signatures of combined officers and members so far, but we have the Smithy Day coming up next weekend, at which we could probably get a few more. She said that she wants to ship the paperwork off to Kingdom this week, so that it can go with the next batch from Kingdom to the Society level. Therefore I suggested that we advertise on FB free cookies to anyone who can stop by the day two of the workshop to sign, and then after the workshop I can take the petition to the A&S officer on my way to Folk Dance (he lives across the street from the dance hall), and he can hand it to her at work tomorrow (they are both doctors at the local hospital). This is much simpler than my handing it to her, since she lives a 30 minute drive south of me, and doesn't pass any where near my neighbourhood on her way to work.

So then I baked cookies and let the shire FB group know. It will be interesting to see how many, if any, stop by to sign tomorrow.

*I am still totally baffled as to how we can possibly be a shire if our arms were never registered (never mind that have been using them anyway for more than 20 years; the last attempt at registering arms for the shire was 1994). I know that back in those days it was a requirement that the group arms be registered before a group could go from "Incipient Shire" to "Shire" (though back then we were a Canton of the Barony of Nordmark--we didn't become a Shire till Nordmark transformed into a Principality). How did we manage to avoid that hurdle?
kareina: (Default)
Today is not only meant to be a work day, it is also a seminar for our division, held in conjunction with yesterday's PhD defense. I ought to be there, but when the alarm went off this morning I was feeling worse, so made the decision to call in sick. The PowerPoint for my talk is on the shared drive, so I sent a note to my colleagues asking them to do the talk and went back to sleep. 1.5 hrs later I woke up hungry, so now I am curled up on the recliner in the livingroom, watching beautiful thick fluffy snowflakes drift down and the drama unfurl at the bird feeder.

The one of the pair of magpies and the silver-bronze raven with the black wings keep challenging one another over whose turn it is to eat the seeds that have fallen to the ground, but the cute little birds don't care they ignore the big ones and keep taking advantage of the fact that they are little enough to land on the feeder itself to eat (and presumably knock seeds to the ground beneath, or why else would the bigger ones argue about rights to the ground beneath?).

I feel bad about missing the seninar, and suppose I could go in anyway, but if I am still contagious that doesn't sound very nice to my colleagues.
kareina: (Default)
I have quite a number of rather longish term sewing projects on the go. My Jester costume is down to only a tiny bit of embroidery left. My lovely white herringbone linen underdress just needs the extra skirt gores cut and inset, then the hem and a small bit of finishing on one side seam. My gambeson still needs the quilting on the right front section finished, the front lining for the left front section cut and that side quilted, then the skirt gores cut and quilted before putting everything together. Then there is the nålbinging pile, and the actual UFO sewing pile.

Did I work on any of these today? Nope. Before heading out to his Baditsu training tonight D. rummaged around in the closet that is mostly full of cotton fabric (the one we didn't organize some time back when we organized all of the linen and wool) looking for his old martial arts belts. He found them, but in the progress made a pile on his chair of all of the fabric, so that he could sort it and see what we have after practice. In the pile I spotted some dark blue knit fabric and decided that it would do nicely for fixing my black cotton knit dress. The dress is one I found at a second hand store some time back that is very comfortable, but its ankle-length skirt was just not full enough. Every time I did yoga wearing it I needed to hitch the skirts up over the knees for lunges, as there wasn't enough room to bend that way with the skirt down. I have been thinking of adding some more skirt gores, and tonight, when I am not recovered from this weekend's cold enough to be willing to do training (and my normal Tuesday Gymnastics class was canceled anyway) seemed like the perfect chance.

So while D. and C. were off at their training I cut a rectangle of the blue cotton knit, cut it into two triangles, cut slits in the sides of the skirt of the dress, sewed in the triangles, cut the hem and was just finished with the final hem seam when they got home just over two hours later. I am now happily wearing the skirt, and enjoying the fact that there is now enough room to sit cross-legged without straining the skirt fabric, and yoga was a joy to do without having to hitch up the skirt to move. The seams are not pretty (they never are when I use a sewing machine (the treadle, in this case, as it is the only one in the house that I like), and they could use some pressing, but I am happy to save the pretty seams for my hand-sewn Medieval costumes, not my edits to otherwise machine sewing modern around the house clothes.

I just noticed that it is after 23:00, so I should get to sleep. Tomorrow one of our PhD students will be defending his thesis, so I should be awake for that. Thursday we have a department seminar, with everyone giving a talk on what they have been up to recently. I have prepared a "Highlights of the Laser Lab" talk to share. On the weekend there is an SCA costume workshop on "really tight costumes", that I will be attending. Not that I need another sewing project, but while I have helped others with fitting late medieval tight (Greenland style) costumes, I have never gotten around to patterning myself for one, so this might be a good opportunity.
kareina: (Default)
The overwhelming sensation of spring in the north is LIGHT! BRIGHT! Ow! The snow is slowly melting, which means that it is gone right up next to the south sides of the houses (which reflect heat), along the roads and bike paths (which had been kept mostly clear all winter), but everywhere else the snow is still there, but its surface has melted and re-frozen often enough that it is really, really reflective. Add to that the bright sunny days, with every increasing hours of daylight (15 hs, 23 minutes today, and increasing by more than 7 minutes a day) means that the world is so very bright to the point of being overwhelming. These things happen in the spring.

I think I will stay inside and work on projects, now that I am past the worst of the symptoms of being sick. Tomorrow work resumes again.
kareina: (Default)
Sadly, hot showers and sleep don't seem to have been enough, and today, in addition to a rather croaky voice (which I am avoiding using) I also have a sore throat and a slightly runny nose.

Therefore am taking it easy. Have has several naps and hot showers, read a bit, baked a broccoli and silverbeet pie (yay for a past self who had left a ready to bake pie crust in the freezer! But that was the last of them--next time I want pie it will be time to make a fresh batch of pie dough), and mended my tunic (my favorite linen tunic came out of the wash with a hole woren into it where the warp threads had worn away, so I darned it, and then did some preventaive darning in a few other areas that were also looking thin).

I have plenty more that needs doing, but getting off this couch sounds more daunting than usual, so who knows if I will accomplish anything. It would be smart to at least look over the guta on the silk banner we started at Frostheim lady night and touch up any breaks in the line so that we can start with painting on Thursday.
kareina: (Default)
I had it when I got to the Frostheim crafts/social night tonight, but very soon after I arrived it became hard to reply to questions as my voice was pretty much gone. This is kinda inconvenient. I sure hope that whatever took it isn't contagious, since we had 8 of us there tonight working on silk painted banners for the group (and a variety of personal projects, too). Luckily I don't really have any other symptoms, other than once every three or four hours I kinda want to cough. If I choose to do so (and it is, so far, totally optional) mostly nothing happens, but once this afternoon I managed to cough up a bit of yellow ick. Also luckily, it is a long weekend, so I can rest and, hopefully, avoid getting any sicker.

Yesterday I asked on Facebook for suggestions for leads to possible sites for Norrskensfesten, and one of my folk dance friends suggested Blackis, a place on the other side of town that is often used for dances, that I had never even heard of. The photos I have managed to find on line make it look promising, in that it has a room that looks plenty big enough to do the feast the way I like to run it, but with less crowding. However, I hear that its kitchen is kinda small. I have an appointment to go look at it on Tuesday, and see if we can make it work, or if I need to keep looking, or just decide to stick with the same site we have been using.

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