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2016 election

Got to the polls this morning about 7:20, stood in line for about 40 minutes. I think this is the longest line I've stood in since 1992.

2016, the year we looked forward to election day more than Christmas.

little bits of things

I'm looking forward to Coronet this weekend. It's always nice when the site is so close to us. The dance competition will be Danse De Cleves (also called hearts and flowers). This version is close to what we do, but their style is a bit more choppy (punctuated? I can't find the right word to describe it).
Whedon hits it out of the park again with this very slightly anti-Trump get-out-the-vote commercial. I'm glad I saw that before I turn off the internet and TV until after the election. Seriously, did the earth slip into some alternate dimension? Did a radioactive comet get to close? Where did our sanity go?
We didn't get many tomatoes out of the garden this year, partly (I suspect) because of the squirrels breaking the branches and partly because of the drought. Most of hardier herbs seem to be surviving, which is nice.
Most of you may have seen it on facebook, but the site for Perfectly Period Feast (Burgundy) has been reserved. It's the girl scout camp we've used for some of the West Coast Culinary Symposiums, Camp Bothin (3125 Sir Francis Drake Blvd, Fairfax California 94930). Pretty site with cabins that have bunks and showers!

17April2016 Lasagne-Fest!

My diet program doesn’t leave much space for noodly goodness, so I’ve been a lasagne slacker for the past year and some. But this past weekend I finally got off the couch and made 6 lasagnes. Each (except the vegetarian one, #5 below) got a pound of sausage in the meat layer. Each (except the no-onion one, #6 below) got a share of the 9 sautéed leeks and 2 red ginormous onions. All got some pesto (note to self, buy more pesto next time, you can’t have too much) and most got mushrooms. The bottom ricotta layer was the same for each; a share of the 4 lbs ricotta with 2 oz goat cheese and 3 oz thinly sliced garlic. The meat lasagnes also got a sprinkle of fried salami. I made three pots of sauce, one with extra onions, one with extra dried mushrooms, and one with no onions and extra garlic (for a friend who hates onions with a surprising passion). I didn't get fancy with the cheeses this time, because I wanted to see what the different sausages would be like.
#1, Whole grain noodles, hot Italian sausages from Draeger’s, fresh brown mushrooms.
#2, Whole grain noodles, hot Italian sausages from Dittmer’s, fresh brown mushrooms, 1 lb smoked cheese, fresh basil and parsley.
#3, No-boil noodles, mild Italian sausages from Draeger’s, 2 cups of mushroom duxelles from the freezer, extra-mushroom sauce (we ate this one for dinner).
#4, No-boil noodles, hot Italian sausages from safeway, fresh brown mushrooms.
#5, No-boil noodles, porcini and brown mushrooms, fresh basil and parsley, extra olives, extra-mushroom sauce.
#6, No-boil noodles, sweet Italian sausages from Trader Joe’s, porcini and brown mushrooms, fresh basil and parsley, no-onion sauce.

Click the lasagne tag below if you are wondering about other lasagnes, or look here for general instructions.

spring time

I love the spring. I planted tomatoes and herbs last weekend. A ladybug landed on my glasses yesterday walking back from the gym. The hawk that lives in the stand of trees across from my office was out flying in lazy circles this morning, and it looks like her mate has joined her. On the downside, dandelions are everywhere and every plant is gettin' their freak on. Even in the filtered air of my office I'm sneezing my fool head off.


Duchesses' Ball 2016

The Duchesses' Ball at 12th night starts at 8pm this year. Hope to see you there.

Set list under cutCollapse )


The Big Christmas Bake

I'm about to start the big Christmas bake for cookies to send to my relatives.
These are Sandies (also called Mexican Wedding Cakes), but they are listed in my ancient hand-written cookbook as "David Cookies" because they were the favorites of my friend David. We once went to a high school dance together, I should post a picture for the next throwback Thursday.

Sandies (I tried to put this under a cut, but the new interface is confusing!)
1 c butter
1/3 c sugar
2 tsp water
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 c flour
1 c pecans (chopped)
Mix all (use hands or a wee bit more water as necessary). Chill dough 3-4 hours. Form into balls. Bake 325F on cookie sheet about 20 mins. Cool slightly and roll in powdered sugar.
sorry to just drop a link and run, but the Carolyn Hax article this morning _Family ties and the unwinding of ‘self-improvement’_ was good enough that I need to leave it here to read again.
The way she re-frames the boyfriend's concern is ...interesting and made a lightbulb go off over my head about an old friend I don't see much anymore (not any of you, lj-list).


I can't quite seem to find the right terms for google. Most pages seem ot be preoccupied with swear words, or curses.

This article looks promising https://benjamins.com/#catalog/books/scl.50.15sau/details

page 951 of _Studies in Middle English Linguistics_ seems to say Lo! or Loo! might be like "Cool!" https://books.google.com/books?id=RppwKv9Oh8EC&pg=PA573&lpg=PA573&dq=chaucer%27s+exclamations&source=bl&ots=2U-WEdxG7Y&sig=uH9hNlObfpTsjwh1Xef8aq4EnrQ&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0CCMQ6AEwAWoVChMItcDq05-byAIVzJqICh3b1w00#v=onepage&q=chaucer's%20exclamations&f=false


Pinchitos Morunos


Summer's here!

Summer's here! How do I know? I know because I found the first of the "scout" ants on my kitchen counter this morning. Yesterday's heat drove them in looking for water, poor little dudes.

Game of the Goose

For the past week or so I’ve been foolishly obsessed with an early-modern pastime called The Game of the Goose. It’s a silly game, dependent entirely on dice rolls, and requires no skill whatsoever. It can be played as a race game or as a gambling game. Fortunately hunting down period game boards and making printable versions is much easier when somebody has already done all the ground work for you. Giochi dell'Oca e di percorso, I am in your debt. Did you know there’s a an academic groups that studies historical board games? I didn’t, but Board Game Studies publishes Proceedings from their international Colloquiums. Weeks like this, I love the internet.



One of my favorite authors, Sir Terry Pratchett has died. Quietly, in his own bed with his cat, says the BBC.
Small Gods was the first book of his I read. I think I picked it up at music practice one Monday, greatsword had left it lying around. I was entranced and chewed through Greatsword's entire Pratchett library in a couple of weeks.
I think we all knew after the Alzheimer's diagnoses a few years ago that the books would stop coming someday, but ... I just never wanted that day to be "today".
Rest in Peace, Sir Terry. Thank you for giving me for a whole world.


two new fruit trencher webpages!

While I've been slacking off on this project due to work and stuff, there's been two new trencher-related articles put on the web.

1) A printmaker wants to recreate a set of trenchers. Like Ivan Day, she's chosen the Griffith set (see previous post) to reproduce, even though the originals were not made with prints. A follow-up post: https://21stcenturyrenaissanceprintmaker.wordpress.com/2014/05/10/the-technique-freak-has-a-challenging-week/

2) https://sites.google.com/site/eikenzwijn/sca-presence/small-stuff by Mergriet van Wijenhorst. She includes a painting that I'd love to get a name/date for, does anyone recognize this? (edited to add, same picture also used on this page: http://www.oldfoodways.info/misc/sca-projects/setting-up-an-elizabethan-feast/)


almost time for the Crosston Ball!

The Crosston ball is scheduled for the 28th, the last Saturday of February. It's going to be held at the Los Gatos History Club . Link to event and potluck-dinner information: https://www.westkingdom.org/as49/feb/crosston-dance-ball
If you would like to join the musicians, please contact me for a music packet. I think we have two new pieces this year, La Castellana and Beauté de Castille.


time off work

November and December at work were terrible this year, so I've been really grateful for the company shutdown this year. I had a day off before GM and I flew to Iowa to visit my parents at their new house. Their seven-month old puppy is still quite rambunctious, but I have some hope she will settle down. We had a few days of nothing much to do except talk, cook, watch old movies, and drink wine. I made some of my dad's favorite cookies, and completely failed at making a cherry pie. I hadn't ever used frozen cherries before, and we got soup. It was tasty, but soup. Mom was hoping for a white Christmas, but fortunately the weather held off until after we left.
We spent a day's "layover" in Milwaukee to visit my brothers-in-law. Andy was free, but Jason was working so much we really only saw him for dinner and lunch. GM, Andy and I spent Monday morning playing Pandemic before we had to get back to the airport. A challenging game. We won, but by the skin of our teeth. I'd like to play it again with five people, just to see how the other roles work.
I don't have anything much to say to sum up 2014. In happy, it's the year a lot of people got married. In sad, 2014 has been the year without a cat. Gypsy died just before Christmas last year, and the universe hasn't decided to trust me with another yet.

SCA Dance practice this Wednesday

Howdy everybody,

This week is the last practice of 2014, Dec17th in Menlo Park.
We'll be taking two weeks off for Christmas eve and New Year's eve.
We will resume Wednesday practices in Menlo Park for the first three (3) Wednesdays in January; the 7th, 14th and 21st.
On January 28th, we will resume the normal winter schedule with Dance practice in San Jose on the 4th Wednesday.

This leaves us with only 9 more Wednesday practices before the Crosston Dance Ball on Saturday February 28th, 2015. See website for details. http://www.westkingdom.org/as49/feb/crosston-dance-ball


This weekend is the last weekend ofthe Cupertino run of The Taming of the Shrew, put on by Shakespeare in the Park (http://www.sfshakes.org/park/). I'm hoping to go on Saturday. It's a "bring a picnic" venue, but I'm back on my crazystupiddiet, so please don't feed me.


plum time!

gormflaith helped me harvest all the plums last night, so now I’ve got about a gallon of washed, pitted plums in the freezer. I might try making a pie later this fall, or just save them to make Bolas (15th century plum goo) when the weather is more amenable to standing over a hot stove.


The curator at the St Alban’s museum just alerted me to a single roundel (banqueting trencher) at the Cuming Museum in London. It is one of the Persian-edges, center-motif and posy trenchers, similar to the Set of Tudor Roundels at St. Albans, or another single survivor at the Norfolk museum. This particular trencher is interesting as the 4-line secular posy matches a posy in the Fizwilliam collection. I had previously thought the set at the Fitzwilliam were unique posies, but apparently not.
The posy is hard to read, but the website was updated on 9July2014 with this intrepretation:
I knowe full well ye bent of ye bowe
Ther is wth ye but a woorde & a blowe
Well att ease shell ye neighbore be
That dwels not next betwixt ye ichurche and the

I’m hoping the Cuming museum has a complete set, at the moment it’s hard to tell from their website.


just a link

Sometimes I read other people's friends lists. madbaker is friends with someone named ursulav, and she posts amazing things. Today's offering is Toad Wordshttp://ursulav.livejournal.com/1590177.html