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.....We spent Friday in Seattle, which turned out to be a lot of fun. As usual, we started out with a nice and leisurely concept. And then added and added and added to it until it became one of those meals you have where your eyes were bigger than your stomach. :-)

.....We wanted to go to Ikea for a number of things that only they carry. Then a trip to Threadneedle Street was discussed. Then we talked about the Seattle Weavers Guild show. We finally had to sit down and figure out what we were going to do and not. The Seattle Weavers Guild show and a trip to Ikea won out the day.

.....We piled into Florence, the Wonder Van, at around 8:30, fortified with Starbucksm, and hit the road. :-)

.....[livejournal.com profile] countess_e had joined in on the conversation the day before, so we started the day by stopping by her place and picking her up for the ride. Cire was just starting to get over a nasty cold, so we ended up taking the puppy with us as well. For all his friskiness outside his portable kennel, the puppy was really well behaved during the transport. Most of the time we hardly knew the puppy and the crate were even there.

.....The first stop was Ikea. TBT and I were getting a lot of good ideas from wandering the store. I tend to be a little leary of Ikea as most of the 'stuff' I have purchased there has a short shelf life. But seeing the displays can be inspirational and lead to plans and visions of what we'd like to see.

.....I especially became excited in the kitchen area. For the first time I could 'see' the concept of the kitchen modules on display 'slipping' into the space we have for a kitchen right now. I don't know why my brain hadn't seen it as easily at Home Depot or Lowes. But I could see the house in my mind as a large box with smaller boxes for each space of the house. It was then pretty easy to see the box that was the kitchen being lifted out and a new kitchen module, pre designed and with all the pieces ready to go, slipping into its place. I'm not sure why the concept was as difficult to grasp as it was until then.

.....I'm not sure an Ikea package is the way to go. But it might be. The total packages ran upwards of $12,000. We'd do the demolition of the current kitchen, but I think I'd enjoy that part. We still need to figure out what to do with the wall that separates the kitchen from the Living Room, which will require a professional to come and take a look at it. I'm also going to push hard that professionals actually come in an do the installation. If we were to do it, the kitchen would be gutted and would sit there over the next five years as we slowly worked through that. Hmmm, I don't think I want to go through that. :-)

.....That false ceiling has got to go as well! I hate the cave-like feeling of the kitchen. The foot or two we would get from removing that false ceiling would be totally worth it. At some point we need to get the popcorn in the Living Room tested as well. I really don't think there is asbestos in it, but you can't be absolutely sure until you get it tested. The house was built in the early seventies and asbestos was still a regularly used item then.

.....We picked up a couple of folding wood chairs from Ikea that TBT really liked. We've been wanting to move away from the canvas camp chairs anyway. That will be difficult as they are so convenient. But I'm going to be weaning myself from them this summer and only bring a couple of extras instead of a half dozen or more extras. :-)

.....I wish we could get the organization of our camping equipment done before the Tourney Season, but sadly, I don't think that is going to happen this year. So I guess it is another year of hodge-podge. We'll make it work.

.....After Ikea, it was lunch at Mizu, which was as good as usual. Then the run up to the Nordic Heritage Museum.

.....The Seattle Weavers Guild show is on the second floor, taking up the space of little more than a large room. There was some amazing works there! Some incredibly intricate weaving on display! Madrun gave us a guided tour.

.....When you walk into the door, you were met by some pieces of linen and silk tapestries in white that hung from the ceiling. The designs were woven into the background. Amazing designs of scenic landscapes. All in white. Hard to describe in words, but incredibly beautiful. In another part of the room were some other silk shawls where the colors were all the same, but a design had been woven into the fabric. Really stunning stuff.

.....Lots of other weavings and pictures on the walls and displays. I actually wish there had been more space so we could have seen more examples of the work.

.....Madrun's work dominated the display case of card weaving. Her stuff is absolutely amazing! TBT took some pictures of it I think she might put on Live Journal at some point. There were also some other examples from others in the Guild that were also beautiful. There was a silk band with gold metallic thread woven into designs that was really beautiful.

.....After a thorough review of the Guild's displays we toured the rest of the museum. Displays separated out into the different homelands (Sweden, Norway, Iceland, etc.). Saw some good costume displays. Some nice bobbin lace displays. Even got a look at a display of Icelandic Spar used for navigation. TBT made sure to get some close up pictures of it.

.....Around 3PM I started getting anxious as I was thinking of Friday evening Seattle traffic. Yeah, it was there. Took quite a while to make it to I-5. Thankfully, the freeway was moving pretty good. After we dropped off Liz, the trip home went pretty quick.

.....After dinner at Gandhi's, a review of the day's e-mail traffic, I went to bed. Zzzzzz. :-)

.....Must get moving though. Theodoric wants one of the Gold Key racks, so we're meeting at the Storage Unit in an hour. Probably should get dressed before I go outside. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....Was welcomed home today by the 2012 Tax Assessment. The value of our home dropped by approximately $7,000. However, the property taxes increased by approximately $250. I went reading through the assessment and found that the increase was due to a new education levy that went into effect since the last assessment. I used to fill in the 'Yes' box religiously and without thinking for many years (and I'm pretty religious about getting my ballots submitted). But the past couple of years where we've paid the taxes direct rather than having them included in the house payment has made me start hesitating before checking off that 'Yes'.

.....I keep reminding myself that it is an investment on the future, the education of the young. But that increasing bite every year....

.....There is a J.R.R. Tolkien photograph and signed letter up for auction, at this web-site: . The current estimate on price? A mere $39,000 Pounds. Sigh! It's probably one of the more famous pictures taken of Professor Tolkien as well. At least in his later years. I've got to win that lottery!

.....Still fighting off a cold. Last night was frustrating. It was the June Faire meeting. We were sequestered in the kitchen of the VFW Hall. My right ear was clogged and aching. That was a distraction in and of itself. Then add to that the fact that it felt like I had several ear plugs stuck in there good and tight. Argh! I could hear about every third word being spoken around me. I misinterpreted things on several occassions and had to have people repeat things several times. I was grumpy before the meeting was over and finally snapped at Cedric. I apologized later. Thankfully it was Cedric and not some others who might have taken it a lot more personally.

.....I'm feeling better today. The ear is still somewhat clogged, but it is not achy like it was last night. However, TBT is in full blown cold mode now. I have to remember to replenish my zinc mineral supply. I think that's why I've become sick twice over the past month. I'm usually pretty good about keeping up on the zinc, but ran out about a month ago and keep forgetting to order some more.

.....A friend of mine, Linda Sartor, from Santa Rosa in California, was recently arrested in Bahrain. She was part of a group of people organizing protests against the government there as part of the Peace Force initiative. She actually took a break from her place in the Occupy Oakland movement to fly to Bahrain and do this. :-)

.....You can read the story of the group at www.witnessbahrain.org. But here is an excerpt from an e-mail she sent out:

"They treated us very well through the detention and deportation...We hung out on comfortable couches, chatting with the female police officers who were left to watch us during the hours of time it took the authorities to check our identities. I was impressed with how much they knew about me when they called us in one at a time to explain why they were cancelling our visas. They said that in the small print on the tourist visa, it says that we must stay the whole time in the hotel where we told them we were going to be staying upon arrival. Then the other reason was because I participated in illegal protests. They had video taped the first protest which probably numbered in the hundreds of people--the one I described to you, when I got my first experience with tear gas and sound bombs and the two women first got deported. Since it was smallish and we were in close contact with the police, we were quite apparent and I imagine they had good footage of each of us on those tapes. I'm sure that I wasn't so obvious to the authorities in that huge protest (probably more than 10,000 people) when I got separated from my local buddy. And then I didn't even make it to this last protest the day we actually got detained and deported."

.....She makes it sound like she was pulled over for having expired tabs on the car. :-)

.....Still debating on whether or not I want to head on over to Fight Practice. I probably will as I missed last week. I'm sure it doesn't make a real difference whether I'm there or not, but I feel personally guilty when I miss a couple of practices. Like it somehow shows a lack of support on my part for the Fighting Community. I think wearing those Coronets makes you Catholic for some reason. The guilt just seems to ooze from everywhere. :-)

.....But that would be the last until next week. Nothing on the docket tomorrow, Friday, or the weekend. Come on, Friday!

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....It sure has been a nice day. I actually had a real dose of Vitamin 'D' as I spent several hours on the roof cleaning off the winter debris. It was rather warm up there. The warmest I've felt in months. It felt really good.

.....I was a little worried about the roof as I hadn't had a chance to clean it off last year. I was expecting moss monsters with huge gaping holes in the roofing shingles. When I walked up there though I was pleasantly surprised. There were sections where the moss was running rampant, but it wasn't as bad as I thought it might be.

.....I swept down the roof of needles, branches and loose debris. Then pulled all the moss I could. Then spead moss killer all over the place. I went and cleaned the gutters as well. Although the gutter screens I had put in several years ago are still doing quite nicely at keeping the gutters relatively free of debris. I'll go back up there sometime in May and sweep up the remainder of the dead moss.

.....The yard and driveway have piles of moss and rood debris scattered everywhere. :-) I would have cleaned it up right away, but Mom needed a ride to the store for her weekly shopping excursion. She went and had her hair cut as well. Shortest I've ever seen her with her her. The stylist cut away the last of her red hair. It is all white now. She already misses it. She had flaming red hair when she was young. Just a shade lighter than my brother. His hair is a bright, deep red. Although the last time I saw him his hairline was receding faster than mine is. :-)

.....If I had gotten my act together I would be in Seattle listening to His Holiness, The Dalai Lama. He is a remarkable man. The Gandhi of this generation. You can hear a lot of what he is saying at the web-site seedsofcompassion.org. It is amazing to listen to him speak. He can say things remarkable profound in ways that are easy to understand and full of humor. He is so REAL as well. When you listen to some religious leaders, they seem so wrapped up in the trappings of their religion that they forget the intent of their religion. The Dalai Lama doesn't have that problem. His humbleness helps carry his convictions.

.....Yup, I'm a fan.

.....Off to go work on some circlets and spend a little time with TBT. Hope you all enjoy this nice weather. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....Sitting here looking out the Living Room window watching our neighbor across the street work on his house. TBT thinks he is getting ready to sell it as they've been doing a lot of clean up and touch up work on it, supposedly to bring up its 'curb appeal'. She is probably correct (she usually is). Actually makes me glad I worked on cleaning up our place a little last weekend.

.....Actually looking forward to cleaning our place up a little better this Spring and Summer. It really looks rather ratty. Lots of tree debris everywhere. Downed trees and brush in the back. Overgrown Rhodedendrum that desparately need to be pruned back. Hedges that need to be trimmed, or ripped out all together. It wouldn't take a whole lot for our place to look really nice.

.....Finished rough polish of twelve circlets this morning after breakfast. Should be working on them now, but will probably bundle them up and take them with me to Gwen's for Bad Movie Night. Even though it has been a number of months since I worked them last, it didn't take long to remember the techniques I was practicing that limits the amount of Fabulustre goo that needs to be cleaned from them for final polish. A couple of passes of Neverdull should do the trick in fairly short order.

.....Went to lunch at Sizzlers with TBT and Rhys, then cleaned up the kitchen and started laundry when I returned home. Straightened up the Computer room and started pulling out the circlet travel bin for polishing tonight. I'm feeling tired and lethargic though (and my back is hurting for some reason), and LJ was a good distraction from having to do something useful. :-)

.....Will complete a couple of circlet orders tomorrow. Then make a grocery run for Mom. Then it will be just about time to get ready for our final planning meeting for KAS. We should have all the final lay-out maps put together so that I can hand them off to the hotel on Monday.

.....Now I'm getting sleepy. Need to get moving before I fall asleep on the couch. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....I think that I'm fighting off a cold or something. I just felt run down all weekend and am still feeling it this morning. If it really is a cold I hope that it just does it and gets over with before KAS in two weeks. Hope that I'm not altogether crabby for the next couple of weeks, would definitely make Her Excellency Brighid's job harder at KAS. But she thrives on challenges. :-)

.....I did manage to get a few things done over the weekend though. I have eleven circlets roughed out and edged and sitting on my workbench. One of them a flower pattern just for Jenae. Hope that she likes it. Received a new order on Saturday. Will have to see if I can fit it into the mix and get it done this upcoming weekend along with this current batch. Maybe Ingasbo will help pay for NORWESCON. What a concept! :-)

.....Not sure when I'm going to get the chance to work on circlets next though. Have got to get KAS updated tonight. Tomorrow night is the Business Meeting. Have a KAS Pow-Wow with Her Excellency on Wednesday. Will see if I can sneak in some workbench time on Thursday. Next step is polishing, which is the long park of this scenario.

.....FINALLY got the driveway cleaned up! It has been a disaster since the great migration from Seattle last summer. It has been weighing heavily on my mind for a month or so (like the one ring :-)). So I finally took some time out on Saturday and put stuff INTO the garage, picked up the trash, put the patio stuff behind the house, and generally made things look better. Took like two hours or so, but made me feel a hundred times better.

.....Worked on KAS updated copy yesterday. But every time I sat down for more than ten minutes at a stretch I fell asleep. But I got through most of the updating. Just have a few more tweaks to make and then I'll blanket the e-mail lists with the updates. Thankfully, Her Excellency and I have a good team. They are really on the ball, now if could just join them on the court I'd feel a lot better. :-)

....Gotta run. See you all later. Be careful, it's Monday. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....This is one of those Monday's where I think that the very best thing I SHOULD do is go back to bed, pull the covers over my face and not even peek out until Tuesday!

.....We had a toilet overflow just after midnight. It was pretty disgusting. Cleaned that up as much as I could (I was asleep through most of it, sleep cleaning is hard to do incredibly effectively). I woke up at 4AM to Rhys already talking as fast as he could in my ear. He was in full Pokemon mode (energy level, not cuteness). I'm sure that the Beloved Tamm is going to have a heckuva time getting him going on school this morning. Her day is already shaping up to be a 'fun' one as well. Sigh.

.....Then, I take a shower in the other bathroom and manage to pull down the shower curtain twice. ...and subsequent clean up of the bathroom there as well.

.....And it seems that the weekend was full of playing 'catch-up' in San Diego, now that everyone is back home and coming back to work. My inbox and phone machine are overflowing themselves, and they smell just like the bathroom at home.

.....Crabby, aren't I. :-) Guess I'll stop ranting now and get back to work. :-)

.....Aaron.
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.....Good Morning All,

.....Just catching up on LJ before the day starts.

.....It is a pretty typical Thursday morning here at work, the inbox of EMERGENCY go-dos is approximately seven inches in height. Which, in reality, is pretty good. The folder stack was doubled at about six inches in height each last Friday. So we're making some progress. Only 4,518 days to go until retirement. Woo! Hoo! Seems like tomorrow! :-)

.....But only 189 days until the beloved Tamm and I are married! Eek! Gads! Now THAT seems like forever!

.....I'm almost afraid to stick my head out on LJ at the moment. Dame Fearga's post on An Tir - West really stirred some internal angst. But it is a good thing to get the situation out in a more public forum. We in Dragon's Laire could learn a thing or two from the outcome. Especially true if we push for Principality status in the future. With June Faire being as massive as it is and probably hosting at least one, if not more, Principality events every year, Dragon's Laire could really burn itself out completely in a hurry if we're not careful. To all those who roll their eyes at me whenever I bring up the Principality question, believe me when I say that I'm taking careful notes on the ongoing conversation. :-)

.....It's been a year and a half since the surgery and that was the final big milestone about which the doctor warned me. And just like clockwork the body switched gears on me. It is retaining far more in the way of everything than it did just six months ago, which means that I can gain weight again. I actually have gone up into the 240's again. Time to get serious on the dieting machine again. Sigh! I was enjoying myself there for a while. :-) Oh, well, dieting will be difficult, but if I can get down to below 220 I'll be happy and can add a little bit of interest back into the diet again.

.....Pretty productive week actually. Submitted my state sales tax return for Ingasbo. Completed my roundup of bills. Did all my preps for IRS submittal. Found out that the Turbotax version that I need to use (which includes the small business paperwork) costs only about $30 less than taking everything to the local tax prep. service and having them do it for me. I think that I'll spend the extra $30. Finished my Financial Reports for 'The Crier' for 2006. YEAH! It almost kicked my butt. There were two entry errors on the Spread Sheet, which of course affected all the resulting numbers. Took me several hours to figure it out. Ouch! I will not be unhappy to unload this on to my successor. :-)

.....Orders have picked up slightly from Ingasbo. Averaging about 3-4 circlet orders a month now. Which is definitely nice for pocket change. Keep thinking that I'd like to offer enameling and staining for the circlets again, as well as the raft of new designs. But know that at this time I couldn't handle any real increase in that workload. Maybe next year. I'd also like to be able to put up the pendants and serving wear as well. But that'll take a little work as well. Some nice designs there. Sigh! Only I get to see the finished results for a while. :-)

.....Stuff is starting to leave the basement. Gotta get it cleared to make room for Tamm. :-) Gave notice to THL Angharad that I need to move the copier out of there. Also let her know that it was my intention to give up the Baronial Library here soon. It takes up more space than I realized. Also need to start dumping furniture big time. Some of my bachelor chic has been a part of my life for well over two decades now and it is definitely showing its age. :-) I was making the bed this morning and realized that the threadbare bedspread was purchased by my parents in 1977 and here I am still using it. :-) Time to upgrade.

.....Gotta run. See a lot of you at Kingdom A&S this weekend. Tamm, Rhys and I will not be in until late. But if you think you'll be up until midnight or so, drop me a line, I think I'll be in the mood to hang out. :-)

.....Have a good day all, Aaron / Arontius.
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.....Like so many others I lost power last night. It flickered on a frequent basis from the time I arrived home from work all the way until I went to bed at 9PM. I actually lost power sometime around 11PM. I had anticipated that and had set the cell phone alarm and pager alarm for 4:30. But I should have just trusted my internal alarm. At 4AM the eyeballs snapped open and noted the blank face of the alarm clock and went ahead to get up for the day. :-) I didn't want to take a lukewarm shower in a dark bathroom, so I turned on the portable radio and gathered together lunch and packed everything for the day and went into work a little earlier then usual. The office was blessedly warm. :-)The Shipyard never seems to lose its power so I never even bothered to check on whether or not work would be delayed or canceled like all the local schools. I knew better. :-)

.....Besides, it was a special day. It was my last day at work for the year. I'm now on vacation for the rest of the year. Huzzah!!! I spent the day getting as much wrapped up as best I could. I was feeling guilty earlier this week at the amount of stuff I was leaving behind for my stand in to do. But I was able to either put things on stand-by, complete work early or otherwise minimize the stuff that will have to be watched next week, so I'm feeling much better.

.....The house was dark and cold when I returned home this evening, which was rather depressing. But Mistress Gwenllyn and Richard Dragun invited me over to their warm house for dinner and a shower. They are good friends. I was rather grateful for the invitation. I have a lot of good friends actually. Even though Brighid and Cedric were at a party in Hadlock, when she heard that the house was still without power she immediately told me to go ahead and go to her house for a shower and to keep warm. I could easily have gone to Laurellen's house as well. That would have been a difficult one though as I wouldn't have wanted to leave tomorrow. :-) I would like to get as much done as I can this weekend so that I can concentrate on just being with Laurellen and Rhys on Sunday and through the next week.

.....This weekend will be somewhat busy, but on Sunday evening I get to run over to the beloved Laurellen's house. I can't wait to see her, I've missed her very much. I've got Rhys time on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. I know that Woodland Park and the Seattle Aquarium are on the agenda. I think that we'll catch a show at the IMAX at the Aquarium as well. The beloved Laurellen and I were talking about touring through a some of the Seattle area neighborhoods that are doing full on Christmas Light displays. I think that a movie or two are on the agenda as well. I'm going to have to sit down for a few minutes tomorrow and make a good list of everything that I'd like to do and schedule it all accordingly.

.....Sometime during the next two weeks I'd like to also schedule a day to clean off the roof of the house and rake up the front and back yards of debris.

.....Now that the year is coming to an end I'm looking back at it and am amazed at everything that has happened. I have much for which to be thankful. The greatest gift of my life was given to me this year, the inclusion of Tamm into my life. What a wonderful Christmas present! :-)

.....Gonna run to bed. Gotta get up early and finish up The Crier. Hope that everyone has a wonderful weekend. I hope that all your hopes and dreams come true for Christmas. That happiness and good cheer are guests in your home. And that 2007 is the best year of your life! I know that it will be for me! :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
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.....I love watching the snow fall from my living room window. With a soy chai tee and a full set of candles in the fireplace. I should probably just go ahead and start a fire in there, I think that I've got a bundle of wood around here somewhere. Or maybe I'll just watch the snow fall some more... :-)




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…..Greetings All,

…..The past few days have been wonderfully rejuvenating! Very little time was given to June Faire or July Coronation or even the SCA in general. I didn’t even go to Fight Practice on Wednesday night, which is highly unusual for me. I’ve enjoyed taking things easy, have especially enjoyed having the e-mail traffic come down from it’s 500-600 messages per day down to a more reasonable 150-200 per day. I can handle that a lot better. :-)

…..I met the hedge monster in battle last night. It threw a feint at me, it gave me a hedge trimmer with a bad battery. I called around and no one open had a new battery for me. I almost broke down and called Wal-Mart, but those oppressed workers and starving Guatemalan children producing the schlock they sell kept staring at me whenever I closed my eyes. :-)

…..But I still persevered! I pulled out my hand clippers and went to work. Got about three quarters of the way down the front before stopping for the evening. It looks incredibly bare and exposed, but once I had swept down the area and cleaned it up some it already looked a lot better than it did before. I hadn’t realized that the hedge had grown upwards of three feet out onto the street. No wonder Bridle View Place was starting to feel narrower than usual.

…..After coming in and cleaning off I sat down at the computer with my nightly four ounces of wine. I tried a new brand this time called ‘Talking Head’. Weird name but excellent wine! I liked it so much that I poured a second glass. Bad move! :-) I literally crawled into bed about an hour later still dressed for the day. I woke up at about 2AM with my glasses all mangled and all the lights and TV on in the house. My last conscious act was of IM’ing Brighid. I don’t even remember what I said. Hope that it wasn’t too bad. She has talked to me today, so it probably wasn’t. But wow, my absolute limit now is four ounces. Period! :-)

…..Going to do some Storage Unit Clean-out tonight, I think. Although with the 90+ degree temperatures, it’s not going to be any fun. Will have to see about getting it moved to Saturday morning or something.

…..Have one circlet order to do as soon as possible on Saturday. Also going to put together a couple of spoons. I have some of my patterns in a shape that will work well as a spoon handle. I’ve also shaped out a couple of spoons and stems from blank metal. I didn’t like the results of soldering the parts together, but I think that I’m going to try some copper or brass rivets. If I leave a little lip at each end of the design section and rivet them to the spoon shapes, I think that they’ll work well. Only thing I worry about is their use as eating utensils. They may impart a bad taste onto anything eaten from them. What I think that I’ll do is to coat them with Envirotex. These are going to look pretty cool and will make a nice addition to Ingasbo. Will also be something that I can give as largesse that might actually be well received. I found out as an afterthought that circlets do not make good largesse. :-)

…..Have to box up and mail the nominees from An Tir for the Blackfox Awards (for excellence in newsletter production). This year I asked the Reporting and Contingency Deputy, THL Angharad, to make the selections. She chose with a different set of personal criteria than I would have. I will be very curious to see how the Society Chronicler and her judging staff receive those selections. Angharad’s eye might be a lot better than mine, none of my nominees from last year were awarded anything. But in comparison I can see why. I tend to judge things on the effort put into them as opposed to the ‘quality’ or ‘look’ of the final product. But that is based on the fact that I have a little more personal connection with these Chroniclers. I should have been a lot more objective. I’m thinking that Angharad will be able to maintain that objectiveness more and come out with better results. I can already see that she came out with different results than I would have, so that bodes well for An Tir’s entries I think.

…..Have a couple of lines started for the next Sonnet. Writing a sonnet in response to someone is much more difficult than writing one with no forced purpose. You must keep your focus that much tighter. I’ve always been free-spirited with my sonnets. Whatever the muse suggested is what I used. But this is taking more time and effort. Hope the results are worth it. Will definitely have to get it done before the picnic of course, so that I can harass Laurellen incessantly. :-)

…..Looking forward to the picnic. It will be nice to sit and chat with friends with no real agenda and all day to do it. Maybe Merouda and Anne-Marie and Countess E. and the rest of my Live Journal friends could be persuaded to come over and enjoy the day with us? It’ll be fun….. :-)

…..Arontius / Aaron.
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.....It still feels strange not to be processing hundreds of e-mails on July Coronation. :-) But it feels good to be able to slow down a bit and just take things easy for a change. Only a handful of message, mainly dealing with Lost and Found items. For some reason people left behind a lot more stuff then normal at J.C. The Constabulary might pull in some good money just off of this event alone at their yearly Lost-and-Found Auction next year.

.....Started work on taking back control of the jungle last night. Pulled out the hedge trimmer. The battery was dead so it is recharging for tonight's attack. But didn't let that stop me, I went ahead and started pulling weeds and dead plants from the side yard next to the driveway.

.....Tonight the hedges are mine!!! They are going to look bare and ugly by the time I get done with them, but it will only be a temporary thing until some new buds grow in. It is really hard to kill this hedge. I can see why the owners had juniper planted below them. It was the only thing keeping them in check from expanding like kudzu. I hate juniper though, so it went early and now the hedges are working their way out into the road. I think the neighbors are starting to fret. :-)

.....Putting notes together for the final July Coronation report. We did pretty good in income and attendance. Aelianora is still working up the numbers. But we had over 1200 people come in through gate. We grossed somewhere over $18,000. I'm pretty sure that includes merchant fees and pre-registration, but Aelianora will tell me for sure. But this really makes me feel better. Before the event I was worried enough about our expenses that I decided to pick up the cost of the scooter and half of the rented house myself. But I feel no qualms now about folding those expenses back into J.C. Especially considering how handy both items were to the event.

.....OMG, the scooter made such a big difference to how well J.C. ran. At the typical Port Gamble event, I'm usually exhausted half way through Friday with my dozenth or so trip up Eric Hill. With the scooter you can zip around everywhere and get errands done, supplies delivered, people dropped off, and still have the energy to think and do other things. The scooter is the way to go for any event at Port Gamble. I think that it should be come an automatic expense, like the U-Haul, for any large event held there.

.....It'll be interesting to see how the June Faire board shakes out for 2007. I would like to keep my same position as Marketplace Liaison, if only to shepherd the Marketplace through its first 'Juried' Selection Process. I'm very interested in developing the process and making it work. I'd also like to make up for the mistake I made this year in trying to put too many merchants on the hill. The merchants are a very fickle lot. I barely survived this year with my scalp intact. :-)

.....But at this time their are no candidates willing to take on Chairman of the June Faire Board. It is a difficult job and the Customary says that you either have to have been a member of the board in the past or have autocrated June Faire sometime in the past. That definitely narrows the playing field. We'll see. Since J.C. was successful, maybe that'll inspire a few people to step forward.

.....One thing that very much surprised me at July Coronation was Sir Daniel. He did spend all the time that he promised he would at Gold Key. But what surprised me was how much attention he gave to those of the Modern World who wanted to know something about the SCA. He was very informative and objective to a large degree. And took a real interest in answering all questions put to him. I was impressed. He came across to me much differently than he does on the e-mail lists. I may not agree with Sir Daniel on many issues (well, let's be honest, on most issues :-)), but I think that in his own unique way he cares about what happens to the SCA as much as any of the rest of us. What a concept!

.....Ruminating on what to do next. There is a lot to consider. But I'm going to enjoy doing nothing as long as I can do so. But the Tolkien Word Battle and the Sonnet Battle are beginning to loom large in my thoughts. Need to engage the brain in that direction.

.....Hope everyone has a good day. :-)

.....Aaron / Arontius.
arontius: (Default)
.....The clock on July Coronation keeps ticking louder and louder. Things are coming together well and I'm confident that the event will be a success. But the details are what always get you in the end. Trying to ensure that all contingencies are covered is one of the hardest jobs of being the autocrat. The hardest being the herding of all your team members into the same direction. :-) At work you can tell your employees to go and do something and they are paid to do it. In a volunteer organization, you have to convince your volunteers that what you are requesting of them is the right thing to do. Much harder. :-) I know that sounds pretty obvious, but in reality it is always interesting.

.....Every event of which I've been a part has been different. Sure, the preparations are generally the same. But having different people take on different jobs, the mood of the venue, the general mood of the populace, unforeseen circumstances, all of these combine to make an event unique in its outcome. This is probably the most exciting aspect of an event, adding the ingredients and the heat and witnessing what comes out of the oven. :-)

.....Went to Lionhearts in Duvall on Saturday. It was freakishly hot there. But the site was fantastic! I hope that Madrone uses it for other things. There was quite a bit of space contained there. Mow down just a few more fields and I think that there might be enough space for a Kingdom Event. Maybe we in Dragon's Laire could use the site and autocrat it for them.... :-)

.....There were over a dozen horses riding in the competition. They were fun to watch. Wish I had stayed to watch more. Ran into Her Excellency Brighid and Countess Daedin almost right away. Countess Daedin is a hoot! She has something good to say on practically every aspect of the SCA. Didn't want to intrude on thier conversation, but since I always like listening to Daedin I just dealt with the guilt and stayed. :-)

.....Hung out with Their Excellencies in their pop-up pavilion. Renart hung out there as well until Dame Tamlin showed up with the J.C. scroll. He then went to the Madrone pavilion to get to work on it. He is doing an amazing job with it. Hope I get to see the completed work.

.....It started getting really hot and I had other places I had to be, so I quietly left at about 2PM. I hate saying good-bye, it means interrupting other's good time. Some actually take that as an insult although it is not meant to be at all, it is just the way I do things.

.....Made good time back towards the ferry, so I dropped into Half-Priced books and then Trader Joes. Found a bunch of of historical references for Edward, the Black Prince, that I did not already have in my library, so I picked them up. Half-Priced Books is a dangerous place for me. :-) Even more so though is Trader Joes. I love that place. All kinds of good food and drink. I keep hearing about one coming over to Kitsap County. Wish that they would hurry up and do so.

.....Made it back home around 6PM. Cleaned up and went over to meet Sir Richard, Catelin Spenser, Elsbeth and Xian over at the Mexican Restaurant that I can't spell over in Port Orchard. We were all sooooo tired. It had been a long day for me. Richard and Elsbeth had spent the day taking part in the Fathoms-Of-Fun parade in Port Orchard. Elsbeth (DeDe) is the owner of Armchair Books in Port Orchard and is a member of the area Chamber of Commerce. As part of the parade, she and Richard dressed a whole crew up as pirates on a pick-up dressed up as a pirate ship. :-)

.....Catelin had worked in the garden all day and Xian in her yard, so they were tired as well. I doubled the sleepiness by having a glass of wine with dinner. A big no-no for me, I kept trying to fall asleep all the way home.

.....Woke up this morning and cleaned up the house and did laundry. Started on the August issue of The Crier. Worked on a bunch of July Coronation correspondence. Started on this week's to-do list for J.C. Then went with a van load of signs to His Excellency Barnet's house for a sign cleaning/painting party. By the time we went through the signs and cleaned up a goodly amount of tacks, pins, tape, etc. we found a majority of the signs still usable and stacked them up accordingly. We ended up only needing to paint four signs to meet our J.C. needs. I helped with the clean up then ran up to Poulsbo to pick up Brighid to see the Civil War Re-enactment at Port Gamble.

.....Noticed a lot of people parked in town. So they had some of the same problems that we had at June Faire. But also noticed in signage and traffic flow that they had implemented many of the things that we came up with after June Faire in preparation for July Coronation. They made me feel like our plans are coming together pretty good. One idea they had that we should incorporate into June Faire planning was to use stakes and string to actually line the traffic through and out of the site. This helped to keep people moving along the right path and to help prevent them from parking in the wrong areas.

.....We discussed a couple of ideas for June Faire next year, such as alternating war scenarios (a War Moot) with the Equestrians in the bowl next year. Also moving the A&S area to where the Wedding Pavilion is now. If the Bardic Stage moved there as well (which would suit the Bardic Guild Minister, Elizabeth, quite well), that would really free up the hill top for erics, JURIED MERCHANTS, and maybe even some period encampments at the lower corner. We'll have to play with it some.

.....Came back home and worked out the second quarter Crier finances and got my books squared away and then continued working out my to-do list for the week. Made my reservations for Norwescon 30. This week will be just a tad bit slower than last. I'm hoping that next weekend will be a little slower as well. Need to get caught up on some circlet orders.

.....Itching to get another sonnet done too. Will have to work on that. :-)

.....Hope everyone has a good week. :-)

.....Arontius / Aaron.
arontius: (Default)
.....I allowed myself to sleep in this morning until 8AM. Had some diet soda, my vitamins and protein shake, and went to work. :-)

.....Down in the basement was THE MONSTER. A HUGE pile of clothes, eight to ten feet in diameter and about five and a half feet tall. It was the majority of the Gold Key clothing owned by the Barony. I've been washing it a load at a time ever since June Faire. The thirty-fifth load went through the dryer this evening. I folded and loaded about eight bins before noon. Loaded another six after dinner. The pile has been reduced to about three bins full of clothes. I have to buy a few replacement bins tomorrow to put this clothing into and then take them to the storage unit. Then I'll be DONE with it.

.....It should be a requirement that every long time player in a group have a chance to do a little bit of every office that makes up a branch. That way you can truly appreciate what that officer does in the course of an event. I know with certainty that I NEVER want to be the Gold Key officer. :-) I promise to never again complain about lugging Gold Key bins to or from an event. I know that it could be a lot worse, I could be running the office! :-)

.....Got the two lawns mowed! Huzzah! They look a hundred times better even though they still need a lot of work. Can't wait until July Coronation is over so that I can do some of the other stuff that needs done. The trimming the weeding the cleaning. I love my back yard when it is all cleaned up. It feels very much like some glade in a forest.

.....Fixed the garage door. The mechanism stuck in a gear and I had to take it apart, including unwinding the cables. Took a lot of cursing and swearing and bruised knuckles, but I finally fixed it.

.....Got the shopping done, my own laundry finished and was still able to get pretty much caught up on July Coronation 'Must-Go-Do-Its'. I feel pumped up and ready for the week. :-)

.....Got to spend some time with Laurellen yesterday. Got the grand tour of the house. Saw some excellent stuff that she had been using for show-and-tell at her embroidery class. I was super impressed! Got to see the work upstairs. I'd hire Laurellen to contract for me anytime. :-)

.....Went and saw X-Men, which was hmmm, O.K., but disappointing. And cheesy. When Professor Xaviar dies, do they HAVE to make him face the camera and give that cheesey smile to it? Ugh! I half-expected Luke Skywalker to jump out and start attacking storm-troopers or Michael Valentine to suddenly discorporate. Very cliche-ic, but the movie was filled with cliche.

.....You know what I think would make a cool movie, or better yet, a long mini-series, would be Heinlein's 'Stranger In A Strange Land'. It's my favorite Heinlein. It would be difficult to get it into a three hour movie, true, but a well done mini-series might make it work.

.....After the movie went to this really good Japanese restaurant. One of those where the chef works on your meal right at the table. The food was really good. I'll have to go back there again.

.....Well, off to get a few last things done before the week starts. Gonna be another busy one.

.....Arontius.

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