Saturday, January 31, 2009

Knowing that there is damage to my knee is comforting, but it doesn't stop me hoping for a prompt surgery date. Everything in my life now has the codicil 'unless my hospital date comes through'.....
Tomorrow is the first Battle Practice for the lads in the re-enactment company, opportunities for them to practice their sword skills
and bill drill
before we go in front of the public in the Summer. The women have started accompanying the men in kit, using the event as an opportunity to publicise the company and the events. I won't be joining them this year as the Battle Practice takes place at a location with a steep hill access. I really don't want to go to sit in the car park for two hours!
So it's a quiet weekend for me - the usual rest and elevation of my damned knee, and gentle housework. I am not on the laptop much, as the weight and heat makes my knee worse and using one leg is uncomfortable.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Big Day

Today is my hospital appointment to find out what is wrong with my knee. It is still prettily swollen and painful after two months on crutches and four months with it elevated whenever possible. So I am guessing some sort of injury is still there.

I am working from home this morning, wading through paperwork so I can get ready for my appointment in plenty of time and to comfort my nerves - thank you, my thoughtful boss!

I had a terrible dream the other night which made me think realistically about any treatment on my knee. I'm not nervous about surgery, although I am not a huge fan of it - obviously......but I just want the constant pain to go away.

BUT if there is something wrong with it that requires fixing surgically, then it is possible there will be a six to eight week wait for surgery. Add in the recovery time for knee surgery - worst case 2 months on crutches - and my maths shows this eating into my medieval re-enactment season with huge golloping bites.

Update - yep, I have torn the cartilage in my knee. The orthopaedic surgeon says it is a clear tear and he can repair it with keyhole surgery. He is also hoping to get me fixed in time for the re-enactment season! The only drawback is the torn cartilage is aggravated by some arthritis in my knees.


Saturday, January 24, 2009


It's time to begin thinking sensibly about this season in the world of medieval re-enactment. I need shoes and I need authentic ones - my current ones aren't 100% authentic, so I need new ones.
Shoes are expensive and authentic ones are hard to find, so my idea this year is to make my own.

Today was one of the scheduled Company of Chivalry Skills Days and I went hoping to have a lesson with our resident cordwainer (aka Gary, who is our esteemed Lord Hungerford these days) on how to make shoes. I had no idea it was so simple! I have learnt how to make the patterns of a simple shoe for myself and how to cut them out and put them together. Obviously, I know the actual sewing of the shoes will be hard work, but I have now learnt how to do 'hidden stitch' and 'flesh stitch' - the two main stitches of shoe-making in the 14C.

I'm actually pretty bad with my hands and am notoriously awful with crafty things, but my practice stitches came out looking quite good :-)

Now I just have to buy some leather, an awl, beeswax and get going - roll on market day!


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Alphabet Meme

I found this meme over at Bobkat's blog and couldn't resist having a go. Then she gave me the letter 'G' and my mind went blank! So I Facebooked a request for words beginning with 'G'. And now I have some good words....

Green - this is an important word today. My car has been off the road with some fairly serious work needed doing. MB has worked hard welding and repairing and today my car passed it's MOT (Ministry of Transport) test - and the paperwork is green! (A fail is red paperwork - nuff said!) I never liked green, but today it's my favourite colour! Not only that, but my trusty little car is green too! Not only is my car fabuloso, but it means no more grotty buses, getting to work in a fraction of the time, my own music, my own company.......LUSH!

Gorilla - I love gorillas. To be honest I love all apes, but gorillas have had a place in my heart since learning about Dian Fossey and the work she did in the Congolese mountains to protect the gorillas that became family to her - Digit, Peanut and the rest :-) Look into the big open face of a gorilla at rest and tell me that it ain't the most beautiful sight. The film 'Gorillas in the Mist' was good, but nothing comes close to the original film of Dian interacting with wild gorillas.

Gadgets - I don't do gadgets. I have a mobile phone, a laptop and an MP3 and in my kitchen I have a coffee machine and a moulinex mixer on a shelf - but that's the lot. I don't see the point in covering my kitchen counters with gadgets. When I make bread, I make it by hand, I grate cheese by hand - I don't recognise a lot of kitchen gadgets in the shops. I don't have a palm pilot, a Wii, an iPOD, a XBox, a satnav, hair tongs, curlers, straightners. I just don't do gadgets.

Gold - As I was walking back to the garage tonight to get my car's test result, I noticed the sun had just dipped behind the local hill and the sky in the area was lit up a bright gold colour. One of the things I love about doing my medieval re-enactment is the golds and pinks of sunset and sunrise. The wrongs in the the world pale Mother Nature provides us with such beauty.

Gang - well, this is no surprise. I have a gang - not bad for a 'not so young any more' woman. The Crazies is a bit of a weird gang, some of us blog, some of us facebook and all of us like silly films and getting together to argue and laugh, drink and eat and spend some quality time as a group.

Gaunt – as in John of Gaunt. English soldier and statesman the fourth son of King Edward III of England and brother of Edward the Black Prince. John of Gaunt inherited the Lancastrian land by marrying into the Lancaster family, John’s son Henry deposed Richard II and became King as Henry IV. Our rallying call in the medieval re-enactment is 'For God, King and Lancaster!' the main men in order of importance in 1370.

Update - extra one!

Grot/grunge/grime - a week or so ago, david (our man in the mountains!) asked about medieval re-enactment; 'do the smelly soldiers have a smelly sachet that they wear to simulate the stink or do they have to stop bathing to recreate the odor?' This made me smile and I remembered it today and grot/grunge/grime jumped into my head! By the end of a weekend re-enacting, most of us are getting a bit odorous! What with sleeping on the ground, canvas tents, wearing filthy clothes, living around a real fire, dirty hands and dirty faces - washing is a bit redundant while we are in camp. Most of us wait and then shower when we get home. So, david - the smelly soldiers are most definitely really smelly....along with the rest of us!

And finally, Ginger - had to have this one! Charlie is a dark ginger Maine Coon, William is a ginger and white shorthair and even MB is ginger, being a redhead! Perhaps I love surrounding myself with golden beings :-)

If you want to have a go, ask me for a letter.


Sunday, January 18, 2009

Eh? What's a blogparty...?

Blogparties are the ultimate social event, bringing people together from across the world to a single place during a single time. All you have to do is ensure the guests know the time differences!
A couple of years ago blogparties were all the rage. It's hard to believe we have some new bloggers in the blogiverse that have never been to a blogparty!

In this time of financial insecurity a blogparty is a great way to have a party for nothing. All you need is an imagination - the wilder the better.
The clothes are free, the food is free, the drink is free - not even a babysitting bill! The host doesn't need to worry that there is enough food, drink, chairs, room to move around.
There is no expense to get there (other than your broadband or dial-up) and while you are there you can still do chores, keep an eye on the family or even watch your favourite TV show!

In addition, there is no sense of over-eating, diets can be forgotten and there is no hangover. All the guests and staff are virtual, so pretty much anything goes - in tune with the 'rating' of the blog (family-friendly, modest, adult).

The Palace used to hold some fab blogparties, and in this era of uncertainty, I decided it's time to blow the cobwebs with another one!

[click] Open Invitation


Monday, January 12, 2009

Hearts and Flowers Party

You are cordially invited to
A 'Hearts and Flowers' Party
from 8pm UK time
Friday 13 February 2009
until 12 midnight UK time
Sunday 15 February 2009

Yippee! A blogparty in the style of blogparties of time gone past!
I have made sure there is plenty of time for you to choose a nice party frock or tux, post pictures on your blogs, invite all your blogpals and pick out your favourite cocktail...and, being the Palace, there will be a surprise or three for the guests!
Make a note in your diaries.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

So tired...

Well it's finally the weekend!

The first week back at work is always the hardest and this one was particularly busy. I knew it was going to be and I have made good progress on the jobs waiting for me.

But I'm tired now. So tired. And my knee is giving me pain.

I was supposed to go to a living history workshop today to practice my medieval skills, but I have sent my apologies. I have plenty here to keep me busy before I go back to work for another crammed week.

And my friend Bobkat has been in hospital, and I have been worried sick about her. Apparently the surgery went well and she is hoping to be out this weekend, and I want to be here if she wants me to visit.
Update: She came home today and is sleeping a lot!
If you visit here, please go to her blog (linked above) and say hello.

So, too much for my little bear brain to cope with...


Sunday, January 04, 2009

16 Days of Christmas - 16th Day

(the 16 days refer to my long holiday leave)

On the 16th day of Christmas
my chores list is done...
It's the last day of my long leave
off to work tomorrow!

Well, that was a nice long leave over Christmas, mind you I am already getting stressed thinking about work tomorrow. I know I am going back to a horrendously busy time of year.

Also, we have received our medieval re-enactment event schedule for 2009 and it is a BUSY year, starting in January with workshops, battle practices through February and March (mostly for the smelly soldiers) and then running right through until August!
With a council meeting on Wednesday, I have also started to get my membership and publicity stuff ready for that.

My depression has been terrible this Christmas with regular bouts of tears, but I discovered that candlelight is very restful and eases my mind. MB calls it 'dark'.

As for the old knee, as intended I have dumped my crutches and been tottering gently about. I managed shopping and gently walking a mile or so into town - albeit with a pronounced limp by the time I got there. The pain is still there but reduced, and increases with exercise, so whatever is damaged is still damaged and I have an orthopaedic appointment on 28 January which I am hoping will solve the problem, whatever it is.

Update: I can definitely confirm the injury is still there - since William kindly stood right on it and wouldn't get off! Ouch!


Saturday, January 03, 2009

16 Days of Christmas - 15th Day

(the 16 days refer to my long holiday leave)

On the 15th day of Christmas
my chores list sent to me...
Christmas is nearly over
and time to take down the tree.

So, our Christmas tree came down today. The Christmas miracle is that it stayed up, despite the efforts of my two boys, Charlie and William.

William (above) developed a taste for electrics and Charlie finally realised, after three years, that he is too big to sleep in the tree!

So the tree is down and the room looked so barren that I got quite low. As the daylight faded, I began lighting candles rather than the electric light and bathed in the soft glow of the candelight.

So if you're feeling low - light a candle or three.......and think of those you love.


Friday, January 02, 2009

16 Days of Christmas - 14th Day

(the 16 days refer to my long holiday leave)

On the 14th day of Christmas,
my chores list sent to me...
an unexpected invitation
and time with a friend.

I have a friend.
Well, being a Crazie I have a gang of Crazie friends, but I have one which is not in the gang.
Today I got a surprise phone call from the Kat to have lunch with her and browse through our favourite local garden centre (which is SO much more than just a garden centre!).

Bobkat is my beloved 'galpal' (to quote Rachel from our fave TV show Friends) and I treasure every moment spent with her.
She was my boss originally and we worked so well together. She gave me the strength of my convictions and enabled me to get myself promoted and move on to bigger and better things. After we moved apart, a deep friendship grew.

Bob is a fab woman and I truly love her. She accepts me - many warts and all - and makes the world so much a better place.

A true friend knows your weaknesses but shows you your strengths;
Feels your fears but fortifies your faith;
Sees your anxieties but frees your spirit;
Recognizes your disabilities but emphasizes your possibilities.

(William Arthur Ward)


Thursday, January 01, 2009

16 Days of Christmas - 13th Day

(the 16 days refer to my long holiday leave)

On the 13th day of Christmas,
my chores list sent to me...
More laundry
Back at square one....!!

Everyone has a sleepy, weary day on New Year's Day - luckily it is a Bank (public) Holiday here in the UK.
So here's a lazy post - more Morecambe and Wise; in my opinion the funniest pairing in British TV history. The story behind this sketch was the men and their wives stayed in this old Bed and Breakfast where doors were falling off hinges etc and they began banging the kitchen cabinet doors. Also Eric, the tall one with glasses, had a standing joke about desperate comedians who saw the light when they opened the fridge door and did a 30 second spot!

Whatever you do in 2009 here are some simple words of advice;

Dance like no one is watching,
Sing like no one is listening,
Love like you’ve never been hurt,
Live like it’s heaven on earth.