Good Day

Good Day

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


It certainly has been a while since I've posted.  We were able to get more chickens and some of those chickens allowed themselves to get eaten by more racoons.  We managed to keep twelve of them alive and they are now butchered and sitting in my freezer.  They did tend to get pretty big...about the size of small turkeys.  Nice and tender! 

This summer was one of the businest ones we've had in a long time. We spent about every weekend working on the renovations, going to an SCA event or getting ready for Pennsic. 

The king and Queen of the East in a royal procession.

Erik fighting Oswin in a personal challenge match, after the Saracen vs Crusader battle.
For those of you who don't know what "Pennsic" is, picture 10800 medieval reenactors all together at a camp ground for up to two weeks, doing the following: fighting, fencing, dancing, singing, eating, shopping, camping, creating, shooting arrows, throwing weapons at targets, and socializing. It was sooo much fun, I want to do it again.

Erik finally got authorized to fight "Heavy list" (that is fight in armour with rattan weapons) at Great North Eastern War this summer.  He was the 6th youth fighter authorized, as they had just changed the rules to allow 17 year olds to fight.  This was unexpected, as previously, you had to be 18 years old to fight.  Needless to say, Erik has jumped into this sport with enthusiasm and focus.

Over the next few months, I am hoping to get some pictures up and catch up in all our happenings over the summer and early fall.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Chickens, chickens everywhere...

A racoon got into our chickens, the night before last.  What a mess!  Racoons and vicious creatures, dragging some off, taking a leg off another, ripping a head off of another...all 25 of them dead.  What a waste of time, effort and money.  Let's pray that there are some extra at the feed store with today's delivery.

   For Father's Day, we spent the afternoon at Kings Landing.  Emily is now working there for the summer and we wanted to have a visit with her, since she is staying in F'ton with my Mom and Dad for the summer and we don't get to see her as often.  We were able to spend her break with her, and toured some of the other Kings Landing houses.

  We were also able to visit with some other friends and acquaintances that we met at the Landing.  You never know who will be there!

This is the Moorehouse, the family home that she is helping to interpret this summer.  They are interpreting the year 1820, even though none of the staff in the house are dresses in 1820's fashions.  (Being a reenactor and living history interpreter myself, I am sensitive to matters of historical fashion).  In fact, I am surprised that in a village that takes such pains to be as historically correct in so many other areas, let it slide when it comes to correct dress.  There just doesn't seem to be much consistancy.   I saw a beautiful Victorian dress in obvious polycotton mix, a man dressed in a Regency/Georgian mix (kind of like a "Fashion Frankenstein"), gowns obviously lacking in enough peticoats to hold it's shape, etc... 
  My pet peeve for today: Daycaps!  ARRRRGGGGG!  They have several people throughout the village wearing DRAWSTRING MOBCAPS!!!  They are totally undocumentable, unauthentic and should be an embarassement to all but the most rank beginners (and then it is only forgiven because they just don't know any better and it is hoped that someone would gently guide them to a better choice)...and they don't even attempt to hide the drawstring with a ribbon.  The least they could do would be to provide each girl with a period satin ribbon, attached with a few stitches to the back of the cap.  They could then draw it up to the front of the cap and secure it with a bow, thus hiding the drawstring and making it appear to be more of a corect looking cap. *Sigh*
Okay, ranting aside, I still had a wonderful visit.  My daughter is becoming a good cook over the open fire (I got to sample the cake that she had baked).  She has had a few cooking mishaps, which means she takes after me.  I still remember the first time I tried to bake a pie in the woodstove for Emily's 11th was so burnt that it was black all the way through.  Emily's grandmother (a wonderful woman) came to the rescue with a birthday cake for Emily's birthday.  She set it on the car while we were busy greeting each other and unnoticed by the family, Nan (our Mama goat), slowly sauntered up and started to nibble on one side of the cake.  To her surprise, instead of tasty B'day cake, all she got was a mouthful of plastic wrap.  We managed to rescue the cake with one side only slightly crumbled and still had an enjoyable Birthday celebration.  It wasn't too long after that mishap that I managed to master cooking on the woodstove, and could produce the most wonderful oatmeal cookies that I have NEVER been able to reproduce in the electric oven.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Busy, busy, busy...

It's been a couple of very busy weeks!  We got to babysit little L, big L, and little A for an evening.  While Erik and I were engaged in the childcare aspect, Bob meandered outside to play on Andrew's wheeler. 

Once they heard it start up, the kids all ran towards the window to watch it go by, and everytime Bob zoomed on by the window, the kids would jump up and down with exitement, waving and yelling, "There goes Mr. Bob...Mr Bob, come back!"

The kids had a great time playing together. 

Big L. is showing off his biggest smile.

Little L. is trying to figure out my thumb-drive.!

The very next week, Andrew and Erik spent the afternoon tearing down an old barn for the beams and boards. At the end of the day, they had a pile of scrap wood that was no good, so Andrew decided to have a bonfire. 

We brought sausages and the musical instruments, and they brought hotdogs and all the fixings for s'mores.  Yum!

Abi came up with a great idea!  Instead of messing with chocolate squares, she bought cookies with chocolate on one side.  All we had to do was pop the melted marshmallow into the middle and voila!  One wonderful, yummy super delicious s'more.

The funny thing is that I was soooo tired and frustrated earlier that day, that I almost stayed home.  I'm so glad I didn't because we had a blast.  The fire was so hot that we had to keep moving out seats back. 

Bob caught his marshmallow on fire.

The best time was when the sun went down and we were singing in the firelight.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Erik's Project Continued...

We spent the night working on his project again.  Here are the updated pictures.

A bombed out factory.

A semi bird's eye view of the town.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Project Time!


As of Erik's WWII project. 
This is the terrain for his WWII German Town.

This is the part that he needs to paint tonight.  Then, after the paint is dry, he will add sand, grass, etc...  I also finally got a better idea of just how long this model is. It's about 3'x 6' (a bit longer than our couch).

This is the town center.  Those are sandbags surrounding the town fountain.  It still has to be painted.

This is a farmstead.  I love his little garden! 
The river is in the background.

He is making this for the homeschool fair.  Every year our homeschool support group (The River Valley Home Educators) hold two project fairs.  Usually they assign a subject to the fair (We've had science, geography, history, hobby, zoology, culture, etc...) but this time, they are holding an "open" fair (at Erik's request) so the topics will be varied.  Erik has had his "ups" and "downs" during previous fairs.  There was the year that he brought the violin that he was making from scratch.  That was very impressive.  Then there was the year he forgot his notes and couldn't recite his speech (no, he hadn't memorized it), so we improvised by having the audiance ask him questions about his topic (which he knew very well and was able to answer them all)...and the year he had a run in with the podium and the podium won (picture Mr. Bean, if you will, trying to get the music stand at the right went waaaaay down, it went waaaay up...repeat until the audience is in stitches).  Although sometimes frustrating and other times embarrasing, they have really been very good learning experiences.  Over all, we really enjoy these fairs.  As a homeschool group, we are aware that our children may not always have the opportunity to get up in front of an audience and present a speech or a project, so we make sure that they have that opportunity twice a year at these fairs.  It's been great to see young kids just starting out in Kindergarten or grade one, shyly get up and whisper a poem or have Mom or Dad up beside them feeding them their lines.  Fast forward three years, and you see them confidently presenting their projects with Mom or Dad sitting in the audience.  It pays off.  Not too long ago, Erik helped out with a Medieval presentation to 450 middle school students at UMPI (University Maine Presqu'Isle).  His confidence, knowlege of the subject and poise so impressed the professors with who he was presenting that he came away with offers of College recomendation letters.

Okay, I was having a little fun with "Godzilla Rat" last night. The stuffed rat isn't really part of his project.


Breakfast of Champions...


This morning:  Bacon and Beethoven


Monday, April 12, 2010

The Burdock War


I declared war on the burdock population today. It was touch and go for a while. They attacked ferociously and without mercy...attaching themsleved to my shoe laces and jacket. They particularily liked my wrists. A couple of brave ones jumped onto my head, and I had to (insert touchingly sad music) sacrifice a small lock of hair.

 I perservered, though and managed to round them all up.  They were thrown into the pile and I got ready to dispose of them, once and for all.  I lit the match and...nothing.  Hmmm.  Back over to the house to get newspaper, and attempt to light the fire again. 

It starts this time, but the fire stays small, only burning in this one area.  I start clipping and adding dead-fall branches to the fire, trying to build it up without success.  Just as I was about to give up and resigned myself to feeding the fire for the rest of the afternoon...Whoosh! 

It finally caught and the burdocks are now ashes.  It worked out well though, as the branches made a nice hot fire, so we roasted hotdogs over it for lunch.  Yum!


Saturday, April 10, 2010

My Little Working Man


My son Erik has a challenge getting a regular part-time job.  He's a hard worker, but we live out in the country, own only one car, and he doesn't have his license yet, so anytime he gets a call to work for the day, he usually jumps at the chance.  He's actually getting a lot of experience in many different areas, from plumbling to carpentry, to farming to mechanics.  Today was one of those days he was offered a few hours of work cleaning out seed potatoes out of the back of transport trailers.

Isn't he such a nice looking drowned rat?


Friday, April 9, 2010

Bach and Bagels


Today I saw a CD, titled “Bach & Bagels”.  Does that mean I need to start listening to Chopin when I eat my cereal or Tchaikovsky when I have toast?


Thursday, April 8, 2010

The Letter "K"


Tomorrow, our theme for Storytime is “Kites”. I love storytime. I love watching their little hands make the motions for fingerplays. I love seeing their happy faces. I love watching them colouring and pasting their crafts together. I love seeing them bounce in the door, excitedly announcing, “Kate, Kate...I’m here!” So, in honour of tomorrow’s storytime, I will leave you with a list of my favourite words that begin with the leter “K”:







And last but not least...



Quote of the Day

"...It is your place to be humble, and to try to make yourself agreeable."  From Jane Eyre (by Charlotte Bronte)

Erik's Norman Soldier's Kit

As promised, these are the pictures of the rest of the items in Erik's Norman soldier kit.

His bottle, drinking bowl, eating bowl and wooden spoon.

His slingshot, stones and carrying bag.

Flint and steel, for starting fires.

Leather pouches for gaming dice and marbles,
coin pouch and horn comb.

Writing gear...which his persona probably wouldn't have had, but he likes to write at events, so he carries a bag of ink tablets, pen nibs and a pen nib holder.

Teeny, Tiny Houses

Erik has been working on a homeschooling project for the next homeschool fair, coming up on the 16th of April.  He had decided to make a model of a German town during WWII and use it to show Urban Warfare during WWII.  The terain for this model town in almost done and the whole town is on a piece of styrofoam that is apr. 2' x 4'.  Tonight I was giving him a hand painting houses for the village.  Since I have a pretty steady hand with the finer painting, he had me paint the grocery store's name, the church (including stained glass windows), and window panes.   Most of the houses are made out of the styrofoam that you use to arrage flowers in.  Here. take a look!

Here he is, working away.  He cuts, glues and
paints every individual shingle on the roof.

A house and a grocery store.  Notice the quarter I put
 beside the house to give you an idea of the scale.

Erik had me paint the German name for "grocery store"  I couldn't believe it was so long! 
Do you see the side of the building,
under the window?  He even put little posters up.

Propaganda posters, which would have been very
authentic for the time period.

Here's another house...this one has stilts in front
holding up the overhang.

He made the church, but I offered to paint it, since I love detailed work and he doesn't.  I wanted to try and paint it to look like one of the old Gothic stone churches.  A quarter is placed beside it for scale.

The model soldier standing in front of the side door
of the church is from a Flames of War set and they
are less than an inch tall.  Erik painted it. 

The "stained glass" windows in the church.

I will post more pictures once he finishes his terrain.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

High Speed...

I'm lying here on the couch and my brain is just buzzing.  That is the problem with me having body could be exhausted, but my brain is running on high speed and won't slow down.  Some of the topics that I am thinking about are

How do you teach your teenager to stick to a job, even if it is boring?
Why does cheddar cheese taste so good at bedtime?
Are these bad allergy symptoms or do I have the start of a spring cold?
Why do Amish dresses look so pretty to me?
What does "honouring your parents" really mean?
Do I have any Lindor chocolate in the house?
Should I get up and get more cheese?
Will I get up on time?
Why does my neck hurt?

If you are wondering why I am thinking of Amish dresses, well we had a small group of Amish drop by yesterday afternoon for a few minutes...horses and wagon and all.  Today we had a guy from church, his roomate and his dog drop by for a visit.  You just never know who will drop by for a visit in the country.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Feast Of Fools 2010

Saturday afternoon and evening found us at the "Feast of Fools".  It was a fantastic event!

Here I am practicing a form of medieval painting, called "Illumination".  Illumination is found in ancient
medieval manuscripts and books.

Master Henry was awarded a rooster.  Everybody should be awarded a rooster once in their lifetime.

There was storytelling, sound effects, men on stilts...


Playing games (and sometimes loosing)...

Playing the fishing game. 
In french, April Fools Day is known
 as "Poisson d'avril" (April fish)

This man was amazing!