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Me Friend Sam

How can I even describe this? I met a woman who was bigger than life in 1985, right after I found the SCA in fact.  In a Sign Language Class, I was never supposed to be involved with.  It was supposed to be an intermediate class so that you would not loose your signs during the summer, but it read as "learn 200 to 500 words" so I was like why not? 

I signed up and then was crazed at the concept of learning so many words so quickly but I felt up to the challenge. I can not tell you how instrumental that choice was in my life and world view.  From that small beginning I can say most of my friends, and my husband and family came from this one thing.  I could have cowardly gone away....but I stuck it out and met one of my best friends. 

I will not use her real name, but I created her nick name- she actually hated shortened names so when I heard her actual name I took the first letters  and SAM was born.  It stuck and everyone called her that many did not even know her real name at all! LOL

Sam and I were inseparable, we played together, lived together, went to University together. It was not all fun, we had our share of fights.  I like proving things to people and Sam hated being proven wrong and would go to astronomical lengths to be right, by causing larger fights.  She never backed down, and would stand up to anyone if she felt she was in the right (which of course was all of the time!).  I brought her to the "Nerd side of things" she had never heard of the SCA but found really nice people, I dragged her to her first Ren Faire and then the next year dragged her to work for it!!  Again a life changing experience. 

We met so many new friends people that were part of our lives from then on.  We lost people as the time went on, and we met some crazy (literally) people.  We both changed, but still were connected, I think in some ways too much so, do you all remember how they closed 'Will & Grace'? Where they had to leave each other's lives in order to make lives for themselves?  I really feel that had to happen for me and Sam.  When I met my husband, she did not want that change, while she was happy for me, I knew it changed our relationship, then I moved away and again we both changed, but Sam wanted me to stay the person I was. But I did not, while away, I learned to stand on my 2 feet and speak my mind. I no longer needed Sam to lead the way, I was able to do so readily.  Sam had issues with this.  It became so hard to deal with I would avoid her, and that is not a friendship.  Money was also something that caused a rift, they say never lend money to family or friends, and in this instance it was true.  I began to have conflict with my husband on the sheer amount of money I allowed Sam to borrow.  

I remember coming down to Renaissance Faire, we were all excited about going and Sam wanted to speak with me privately and before she could say a word the knee jerk reaction was "no more borrowing money Sam".  I think she was offended but it was more than $2,000.00 already and while I did make money, it seemed every single time I spoke with her it was about more she needed.   I really don't know why she took me aside as she was offended, and rightly so, I felt badly but I also felt I needed to make a stand.  We were young, and had a young child and we needed what extra we had so we could eventually buy a house, and well pay off things.  We never received an iota of cash back from Sam....ever.  It really was intolerable, especially when I found out she had gotten a settlement from a legal issue, and never once made good on sending me money.  Each time she borrowed she would promise, yet she had this settlement and never spoke about it.  It really hurt me, because I had always been generous.  I think that ate at my friendship with her, and her never taking blame of things, well one time, we had come down and stayed with her at her apartment.  She had cats that were undisciplined, they urinated on everything, I had spent more than 10 months creating my first Elizabethan from the skin out, and had pearled the bodice and added trim, everything. I was very proud of it, it was something I had fantasized about making for more than 10 years.  

It was ruined, by the cats peeing on it and our suitcases and we had just purchased an ice chest that you could fold up and was really good at keeping this cold.  So hubby took everything down to the Van, we did not notice the smell because well the whole apartment smelled of cat urine.

Hubby came back upstairs really upset, once outside he could smell the pee all over the brand new ice chest as well as our suitcases.  Sam, though instead of just admitting that yes the cats had pee'd, wanted to make excuses that it was not that she pee'd on our suitcases and ice chest but they pee'd on something else and it dripped onto the suitcases and ice chest.  Did that point of contention mean anything? Not really, not to me, or to the Hubby who showed her his hands that were yellow with dried pee just from handling our things.  

She kept screaming we were wrong, Hubby was causing this issue and she did not want him in her house ever again-blah blah stupid crap blah.  I just stared at her, and then made the choice, our friendship was not working for me anymore.  So I told her this and walked away. This was 13 years ago....it was like losing my arm, my heart, part of my soul.

Sam died on Thanksgiving Morning, I still don't know what she died from.  We were 5 months apart, at one point  I could not think of my life without her, she had been on my mind this past year, like obsessively. I goggled her to see how she was, but was not not there,  she did do Faire again and I saw pictures of her, she looks a lot like her Mom now.  I had hoped she was happy, but she wanted to be a Nurse Midwife, and well that never happened I guess, even though she was a straight A student.  I don't know why.

Sam died and that is it, she is dead, gone, I will not use those dumb euphemisms like 'passed away', or 'is gone from us'. Gods how we laughed! How we danced and played and cried on each other's shoulders, I lost so many babies, she got rid of one that I begged her to keep, then found out I was pregnant with my eldest. Ripples in the pond of time, each touching each other changing ourselves to be more from the touch.

Sam died.  The spirit that was so HUGE, is no longer housed in flesh. Sam is gone, just like blowing out a candle.
My 20's and 30's, my Maid of Honor, labor coach, baby burrito maker, coo'er and doer of silly things, who helped me to confront issues (Funny that right?), who taught me to tease my black hair and thought a black 'perm' involved curlers LMAO still, who laughed until she pee'd when I said some guy was up to his 2nd knuckle in the next car with nasal perusal.  We would sit in traffic and play, mate the BMW drivers.  Sing the entire sides of Footloose, and Top Gun.     

Sam is dead.

I don't think I want her to be, so can we have a do over? Nope I guess not.  Sam? I miss who you were with me, and I miss who I wanted you to be.  Sam, please be there when it is my time and I promise not to laugh at your vibrato. 

We will sing 'Holding Out for a Hero', and drive Joshua, because I know he is with you, we will be in the black Scirocco again. with the windows down and the heat on, so we can stay awake until we get back home. Ian and Damian will be there, hopefully not peeing on everything, Snoopy too, I can only hope.  

I thought we would grow old together, I know we are 50, but it was not enough time Sam.

To the next horizon Sammy girl, I won't pull your hair, and you won't roll over on me in bed okay?

G'night Sam, I miss you.

Meet Our New Doggy Daughter

So for my birthday? We brought into our home a new daughter, Sabine de Winter, to go along with d'Artangnon our doggy son.

So here she is!

Sabine de Winter

Anyone Know a Good Crispinette Tutorial?

Working on the GFG's for the girls, when I am also checking out how to make crispinettes.  Anyone know of a good tutorial? have any hints or helps? 


Recent Fabric Finds!!!!

Well Hello All!

I know I have been betwixt and between Facebook's Elizabethan Costume, and Yahoo Groups.  I wanted to quell about fabric I just got at a steal though...

So I was at a not too close by JoAnn's, I was waiting for the Teacher to arrive for computer design class.  So I was checking out the discounted bin, earlier I promised *Again* to make garb for my BFF's family, which are all girls!  BFF is on some hard times as such, when Mina the middle child's birthday is around, she really does not have a lot of money (try none) with the Yuletide around the corner and such.  So I try to fill the gap by making even Birthdays a big deal.   So she spoke about the desire to have her birthday at Medieval Times.  Well we can't just do that! We need to have appropriate clothing.  While my BFF has been involved with the SCA the same amount of time I have? She does not seem to want to have garb, unless she buys it, or I make it.  Now that you understand I wanted some 'Bling' fabric but I am not currently working and looking for a job, so money for my hobbies is tight.  So as I am walking the aisles, I notice a lady touching a roll of fabric and I see it is silk, I can spot that a mile away, and I began to sweat, I try to appear casual as I look at dreck near to this lady and she feels the silk for a bit and then walks away, her body heat was not yet out of the space when I swooped in and grabbed the roll.   It was hefty and I looked at the tag, it said $6.00 per yard, this meant it would be $3.00 per yard due to the extra 50% off sale on clearance fabric!!!!   So I trotted up with my haul and it was in pieces of 2.5 to 3 yard increments, again not a bad thing, and I became the proud owner of 13.33 yards and the better thing is that it is 54" wide- all of the girls are under 5' 2" so they can use the fabric on it' side, so I am very happy!!  $40.00 worth of silk that I can make an entire families Gothic Fitted Gowns? You betcha!

 The Shot Gold/Black Silk was just $3.00 per yard So this is the gold/black shot silk over the damask over gown fabric.  the Fleur de lys fabrics are both mine.  The black/gold is from Hancock's while they had a 50% off sale plus an extra 20% total online order so it came to $9.00 per yard.

hard times, Go to Image wizardSilver Silk Satin $10 per yard, Pink/Grey $10.50 and the so was the Gold/Purple
I used to go to this fabulous fabric store at the Haight /Ashbury in San Francisco, in fact my friends and I found it when we began to come up to Northern Ren Faire back in the 80's!!  I was so upset when they closed that store because it had all sorts of things you could find, from buttons to actual brocaded fabric.  Anyway someone else mentioned that they opened a store up in Berkeley, BFF and girls had come up for the week to get away from home and the heat, since she is an Alumni of Berkeley, we killed 3 birds with 1 stone, and visited Stone Mountain and Daughter as well as Discount Fabrics.  The Silver Silk Satin was $10 on sale, and the grey/pink, purple/orange and blue/red was $10.25 after sale.  So I was pretty happy with my purchases!

We have made patterns for the GFD's so now it is up to me to get them sewn up....sigh  They can use these for 12th Night so I am excited about that.

Wow, Long Time No Post~

So many things have gone on, and not gone on this past year! I have healed from surgery,now I can actually wear my Lizes without crying after 2 hours.  I have loads of stuff that was on hold being done now!

I am usually on Facebook now because they have a really lively group called "Elizabethan Costume" and I am learning and chatting and having a grand time!

SCA Meme

I Love these people get the chance to know more about you and your passions!

- Do you have an SCA name? Cilean Stirling
- Do you have an SCA persona? Cilean was born in 1529 and is living in the 1560's now.
- Changed persona because of different garb? Well not really but I guess, I have really only adored the 16th Centure but now I do meander through the countries of the same time, and I have dipped into the 13th/14th as well as 19th centuries (obviously out of SCA but I wanted to mention it!)
- Been adopted by a person, household or clan? We started our own Household Stirling House
- Been taken or taken an apprentice, protege or squire? Yes I am a Protege, and I am hoping to become an Apprentice.
- Had a name and/or device accepted by the SCA College of Arms? No, and I have been in for 27 years~
- Had a name and/or device rejected by the SCA College of Arms? Not Yet....

- Been an officer? Yes, I have not been on the Kingdom Level yet, but Principality and Local.
- Been an Autocrat?  Yes for all levels
- Cooked an event? Yes, for Principality Level and Local
- Spontaneously helped with dishes at an event? I am often in the kitchen!
- Taught a class at an event? Yes
- Run an activity at an event? Yes
- Write someone in for an award?

- Ever fought at an event? No
- Ever fought at Pennsic or another War?  No
- Done a different martial art than your usual one at an event?  No
- Ever run a martial activity at an event?  No
- Fought at an event tourney? No
- Ever fought in a Crown Tourney?  No
- Won a tourney or contest at an event?  No
- Made your own armor?  No
- Made your own weapons?  No
- Been a squire?  No
- Have rank as an archer?  No
- Have rank as a fencer?  No
- Created a siege weapon?  No

- Have you ever entered an A&S contest? Yes
- Have you ever won an A&S contest? Not Yet, I hope to!
- Ever run an A&S contest?  No
- Ever judge/critique items in an A&S contest? Yes
- Ever wordsmithed a scroll? No
- Illuminated a scroll? No
- Done the calligraphy for a scroll? No
- Made your own paper? Yes
- Made a book?  No
- Make someone's order medallion? Yes, Always
- Have you ever sewn your own garb?  Yes, Always
- Sewn garb for others? Yes
- Ever been sewing on the way to an event? Yes
- Ever been sewn into your garb at the event? Yes
- Ever finished an outfit before an event?  Yes, Why who said something different?
- Researched and completed an outfit from said research?  Yes
- Ever taught a class on sewing?  Yes
- Finished a hat? Yes
- Do you know how to spin? No
- Ever woven your own fabric? No
- Do you know how to knit? Yes
- Do you know how to crochet?  No
- Have you ever dyed your own yarn or fabric? Yes, often!
- Embroidered a garment? Yes, both with my hands? As wel las with Myst (my Embroidery Machine)
- Beaded a garment ? Yes
- Lampworked your own beads?  No
- Ever entertained at a feast? Yes
- Ever ran a bardic circle?  No
- Ever performed in a bardic circle?  No
- Had songs requested from you at such?  No
- Ever competed in a formal bardic?  No
- Know any period songs? Yes
- Know any period dances? Not yet, but I am trying to learn! 

- Ran a court as Royalty? No
- Ran a court as Herald?  No
- Heralded at Court?  No
- Been an Attendant, Guard or Champion at court? No
- Been called to court to receive an award? Yes
- Been called to court to present something? Yes
- Been called to court for punishment?  No
- Been part of a court "shtick"? Yes
- Done something while watching court, e.g., spin, sew, embroider? Yes
- Had a royal comment on what you're doing? Yes
- Have awards from more than one Kingdom?

- Have you ever gone to Pennsic? No
- Ever done Zero Night? No
- How many Pennsics have you gone to?  No
- Ever taught a class at Pennsic?  No
- Taken a class at Pennsic?  No
- Gone to Opening Ceremonies?  No
- Been a waterbearer?  No
- Placed in a Pennsic tournament?  No
- Worked a shift at Chirurgeons Point at Pennsic? No
- Worked a shift as security at Pennsic?  No
- Worked a shift at Heralds Point at Pennsic?  No
- Volunteered in any other capacity?  No
- Ever merchanted at Pennsic?  No
- Gone to the swimming hole, Classic or Family? No
- 'Trolled the Bog for parties?'  No
- Hosted a party at Pennsic?  No
- Been part of a 'Pennsic building project'? No

- Ever traveled more than 8 hours each way for a one day event? Yes, 3 YC
- Gone to a different Kingdom for an event? Yes
- Lived in a different Kingdom? Yes
- Have trailer hitch and trailer, mainly because of the SCA? Yes
- What ridiculous lengths you've gone to get to an event?
Nothing really...

- Run out of closet space because of garb/gear?We bought a house with 3 garages so that we could store SCA, and I am running out of space
- Ever crammed more than 4 people into a hotel room? Yes,
- Met your future spouse at an SCA event? No, at Ren Faire!
- Met most past significant others in an SCA setting? Yes
- Have better research books than your public library? Yes
- Is your tent bigger than your first apartment? Yes
- How many sewing machines do you have? 3 plus serger
- Own an anvil?  No
- Added something to the YKYITSCA-When lists?


Why?? Must I set myself up?

I make these lovely plans, and they go to ruin! I wanted to work on my Paste now that my wired coif is done, however? I really needed to make wired Coif #2 because this one looks like an amature did it, and they did! ;P

You know what they say? Best laid plans and all? My day off started off well, I got up late for me 10:30am and I went to bed at 10 or so, I guess it must have been really tired.  So I went out with Mom and youngest child so that I could purchase food, and get my nails done and copies made the list is really endless.

I did not go food shopping, I went to get my nails done, and they are so cute! I have a birthday cupcake on my thumbs, I will take pictures to show!  I did make the mock up for the veil but not for the paste.  While I was out Hubby asked if we can go 20 miles away to Brentwood and go see Transformers, no real biggy because the theater is awesome.  But the times on the Net were not the same as was actual (arrgh) so we arrived 30 minutes too late, and now had to wait another 4 hours before the next show.

Okay so the theater is nestled in a Boutique-y shopping center, with J. Jill and Coldwater Creek, and DSW, as well as Chico's!  And everyone had a sale!! Talbots which I adore, however? With the exception of J. Jill and Coldwater Creek no one had sizes over 14 ( which was called XXL!!!????!!!)  So I said you are cutting out more than 65% of the populace and walked out, however I fit the XL at J. Jill !!!!! I have never been able to wear their clothing, so this is such a boon, but nothing I wanted was on sale!
Coldwater Creek? That was a different story they had an additional 40% off of their Sale price!  So for $146.00 I bought;

4 Jackets
3- Pairs of Slacks, 2 Crop, 1 Long
3- Shirts
2- Necklaces
1- Pair of Earrings

But, I feel badly that I am behind on the paste, I will be working this weekend, so I will need to work on the paste when I get home.  Monday I have my day off, I have made my 4th Dinner already, so that is ready to go.

July2 ~ After Work!
Work on Paste Mock Up
Cut out real Paste and add wire
Cut out Silk and attach

July 3~ After Work
Work on finishing Paste
Play with Veil
Figure out jewels to sew onto veil

July 4~ My Day OFF
Cut out Orange Linen Kirtle
Sew as much of the bodice as I can
Attach Skirt if I have time

Sew on Jewels while having fun with family

July 5 ~ My Birthday!!!

July 6~

July 7 ~ Day off
Complete Kirtle and wear

I will work on the Gown during the next week

So I will not have this done but I will be able to wear it, and I will work on the Gown during the next week along with my GFD, for Costume College.

I will need to find tear shaped hat pieces to begin to make my hat and figure out which fabric I want to use!

More later

Trim Dilemma!

Help! Which trim will it be?  This is an English Fitted Gown

A. Black w/ Gold Fleurs?
B Purple w/Silver Fleurs?
C. Black w/Gold Flowers?
Always difficult to figure out this will be on the orange!  So please? Give me a clue!!



Crazy Busy

 I don't know why I can not "No".  I have not worked in a month, this was getting tedious I would end up sleeping during the day and then not get any sleep at night and it was more of a cat nap of 20 to 50 minutes before someone at home needed me so they would wake me up....

We went to the Opening of a Joann's and there was a Viking Dealership inside and I went over to check out what they had, started chatting with the people there and they offered me a job.  The new Manager seemed a little ...hesitant and seemed to be saying over and over how we would not have and she did not have adequate training.  I got the impression she thought we should have been in a training room for like 6 weeks.  I tried to assure her that it was the learning curve and that 3 to 6 months later she would laugh at this beginning.  It is always chaotic when beginning some new adventure.  I was heading to LA so I could do a workshop we had planned.  

Anyway I got at call during the workshop and returned it as I was taking my flight home.  It seems the Manager quit that Sunday, she could not handle the job.  They were offering me the position!! 
Back story: There is another store like this in another Joanns about 30 minutes from my house.  I have applied there several times shown her things I have made with my Diamond.  I have never had a phone call, even though over the past 4 years I have seen several people hired by this shop.  I know of at least 2 other people of color who have way more experience and own Designer SE or Diamonds, who also have never gotten a response from this shop as to employment.
So I took the Manager's Position I think out of spite but also because I know I can do a good job, however now I  feel like the perverbial in the fire from the frying pan.  At least the lady who quit had 6 days of training, they are expecting me to read a manual and just be awesome from there!
I have always abhorred sales quotas, I know this is a sewing machine sales but that added pressure, is adding to my stress, I don't want to disappoint people? But I don't want to disappoint myself and I am getting used to working a 40 hour work week again.  I have been part time for 6 years! 
I guess like I said to the 3 day Manager in 6 months I will be laughing.  I hope......

I have Done Some Things!!

 Hello ALL!

I did not die, as I thought I might with a lovely Spring cold that lasted 3 whole nasty weeks. I have need to make yet more Summer Tourney Gear as I lost weight and gained some then lost some more during the past year and the Shoulder Debacle, and I am doing ever so much better, in fact so much better that I was able to wear a complete Elizabethan for an entire day without using meds or anything I was finally comfortable and happy!!! I still can't raise my arm above my head directly but I can lift 5lbs now!  So with this said, I purchased some awesome Lavender Blue Linen from a guy going out of business and it was $4.00 a yard and it is a good medium weight fabric.  I bought enough for myself and my best friend to make a gown from.  I am 5 10 and she is 5 4 (Claims 5 5 but I have my doubts! LOL). Since we live in 2 different SCA kingdoms, myself in the West and her in Caid, we will not be considered twins, plus I do Elizabethan and she is more Florentine, so it has a lot of differences. This is what I have so far:

I  took the time to bead some of the leaves and the strawberry, I thought they needed a little more to stand out!  Right now Myst is embroidering my sleeves with a Silver  Tudor Rose and Fleur de Lys. Once those are done then it is pretty simple to put together, I am going to put boning into the bodice, I think it needs the structure, I will not be lining this gown as it is meant for camping.   I will use my corded petticoat and possibly a linen petticoat as well.

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November 2012


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