War paint

More war prep was done today, and I’m starting to get pretty excited about it.

First off, my husband and I taped and painted our dancing masks with Viking runes for warrior. That was a fun and interesting adventure (in which we learned that one of the smallest pieces of the airbrush is one of the most crucial in dispensing the paint), and it got me a little more revved up for the event. I did some fabric painting as well, adding symbols to represent both Kingdom and Barony on two of our tunics:

Are they perfect? No, but what is? I still think they look pretty snazzy considering the time constraints I’ve had (and the fact that I mostly eyeballed almost every measurement on these).

I feel much better about the war now that things are falling into place. We’re getting to the point where we can start packing early, which is leaps and bounds better than we usually do. I mean, most trips we take I end up packing for the morning of. We’re not leaving for another three days and I already plan on stuffing my bag as soon as we get home from visiting with friends.
I am still a little nervous, but that’s the socially-awkward introvert in me. There will be lots and lots of people there, 90+% of whom I won’t know. It’ll be a challenge for sure, but at least for now I have the prep work and my real job to distract me from that.

All that’s left is to get my creaky old joints to man up and quit whining. The past few days have had me in varying degrees of pain, which is not going to be conducive to a fun fake war experience. I’m hoping that the kinks work themselves out soon because I want to be able to take the field in top form (for me, that is).
Three days until we’re officially on the road to California!

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Just in the neck of time

Almost (mostly) done. Just a few necklines to finish off, and the new tunics for the war in California will be finished. With, oh, 4 or 5 days to spare.

I might even get time to add some trim to another tunic or two.

A bonus is the extra time to add “war paint” to our fencing masks. Thanks to an airbrush, some paints, and a modicum of artistic talent (yeah, right), we can make ourselves more menacing on the field–or something. More visible targets? Yeah. Okay. There’s that. But still…I get to paint stuff.

There’s still a ton to get done social media-wise, but I think I can manage to wrap that up in the morning. Or something. I don’t even know what to do with that at this point. I may be in over my head, but I think once I get a rhythm down it will jive okay.

On the good-news front, I have a potential beta reader for when I have Book 1’s revisions done–thanks to Twitter. (See what I did there? Social media segue.) You see, just about every day I tweet a few lines from the WIP with various hashtags. These hashtags are kinda like weekly “looky what I can do” things, where authors get to show of nuggets of brilliance in the hopes of…well, I don’t know exactly what the point is, beyond gaining a few followers and maybe some readers when the book is finished. I think part of the point is the inherent narcissism that seems to be rampant among writers. “See how witty I am? Read my next book to see what I can really do when not under a 140-character limit!”

Speaking of narcissistic writers, I had quite the ego boost yesterday when my blog views shot up (relatively speaking) after that nonsensical post about not having anything to post. Who would’a thought? My deep, existential stuff often goes unnoticed, but write a few paragraphs of drivel and it gets devoured. Go fig.

I had something else I was going to say, something of moderate importance…but I got distracted by my own thoughts and whatever it was is now unimportant.

Error 404: Title not found

Writer’s block sucks, especially when it’s something as simple as a blog title. Or a blog subject, for that matter.

I could write about the stress of prepping for the upcoming out-of-state war event, but I’ve done enough whining about that. I could write a short story or some flash fiction, but again, writer’s block. I could write about the fact that my industrial piercing’s healed enough for me to put my freaking sword barbell in…but that’s not enough for a whole blog post. Hell, it’s freakin’ National Poetry Day and I got nothing. Zilch. Zippo. Nada.

So what am I even doing writing right now? Honestly, I don’t know. I think I’m avoiding doing any actual work, like finishing the tunics that need to be done before the event or revising Book 1 or hell, even practicing rapier stuff. But no, I’m writing a blog. A nonsensical, pointless blog.

Sometimes I guess you just need to zone a bit. Let that mental jelly ooze out. Barf up all the thoughts that have been upsetting your stomach and then wipe the bile off the corner of your mouth and go on with life.

Okay, maybe that metaphor/analogy/whatever was a little bit gross, but you get the gist of it. Basically, even when I have nothing to write, sometimes I just have to write for the sake of writing.

Perhaps tomorrow–or the next day, or the next–we’ll be back to our semi-regularly scheduled programming.

Let slip the dogs of war

I’m almost there with the tunics! Thanks to a good friend, I was able to get the tunics mostly done (three have minor things to finish, one complete cut-and-sew left to go) last week/weekend, and hopefully this week I’ll be able to put those last touches on everything.

My husband is diligently planning the food for the event. He’s the resident cook, and we’ve got a decent-sized group that we’re camping with. Between the two of us, the stress is kind of starting to suffocate a little.

Still, stress aside, we’re both excited. I should be able to get my sword barbell for my industrial piercing put in this Saturday, which means I’ll have it for the war! I can hardly wait. 🙂 The piercing is healing well, well enough that I can take my fencing mask off and on with no problems. The only irritation I have is when I wake up, and I think that having the shorter barbell in will make that better because it won’t be able to slide around when I inevitably toss and turn in my sleep.

Work is going to be hectic leading up to our departure time, which will be immediately after I get off of work next Wednesday. One week and some change. I should be able to get those tunics all finished by then.

One week and some change.

And then we’re off to war.

T-minus 9 days

Nine days and counting until my first out-of-state war. Nine days to finish three tunics (one of the four is finally complete, one only needs the rest of the trim sewn down, one is cut but not pinned/sewn, and one hasn’t even been cut yet). I have my hands full, that’s for sure.

Thankfully, I have great friends to help out and make the time pass better. One of my friends has offered use of her home’s space to do my cutting and whatnot, as well as offering her company, both of which I am grateful for. I discovered last week that I tend to operate more efficiently (still slowly, but more efficiently) when I have someone to talk to, gossip with, whatever, than when I’m in my own workspace. I think part of it is that I get distracted by things like my phone, the Internet, and other projects that are piling up as well. None of that is really conducive to finishing these tunics.

My hope is to get the already-cut tunic finished and the not-yet-been-cut one cut and maybe pinned today. That would be a tremendous weight off my shoulders as far as the deadline to finish these. Hell, I might be able to get some trim on a couple more tunics instead of just the one.

The only good thing about this deadline is that it’s taking my mind off the reason for the deadline: the war itself. I haven’t done many rapier melees, and the ones I’ve done have mostly been practice. Okay, almost all been practice. I’ve been told it’s easier when you’re in the thick of it, but that doesn’t do much to calm my nerves about it. So far, I tend to be too slow and clunky on the field, especially compared to my more experienced comrades. Even my husband is much better on the battlefield, but I sometimes wonder if that’s due to his military experience. Hell, most of them have military experience. They know how to follow orders, how to make heat-of-the-moment decisions, all that stuff. Orders process immediately in their mind, whereas I have to think about okay, what was said? Oh yeah, this. So I need to do this. By which point in time the order for “this” has passed and they’re on to another order.

Now I’ve gotten myself all worked up over it again. Geez. I guess I should put down the laptop and get my fabric and thread together. I’ve got a lot of work to do.

Staking claim

As they said in Mortal Kombat:

it has begun

What, exactly? The house. Our house. The stakes marking the corners of the house are in place and spray-painted bright pink. It’s not the official “ground-breaking,” but ground was technically broken.

Our original layout for the house turned out to be an ill fit, but we changed the orientation of the house in re the road and it’s all gravy now. My husband thinks it looks pretty tiny from looking at those four bright pink stakes, but having seen how HUGE my parents’ house turned out to be after it was finished, I know it will be plenty for the two of us (and Rory). I’m super excited for construction to get started. Next week the septic guy will come out and do tests on the dirt for all that stuff. In around a month–maybe a little less–construction will begin.

By our fifth anniversary, our home will be finished and we will be in the process of moving in. I still can’t believe it. I’d never thought that I’d have a home of my own (unless you count jointly inheriting my parents’ house some time in the distant future), let alone a freshly-built one.

We’re even making plans for years and years down the line. Distant future. More than just until the current lease is up. Long-term plans. It blows my mind. I’m so beyond excited. I may be busy as shit lately, but in the background is that constant buzzing of “new house new house new house new house“…

It’s starting.

It has begun.

Into the ring

For the past several months I have been in a “deputy” position for a large volunteer/charity group. Last night, the opportunity came up for me to take the lead position in that department, and I decided to bite the bullet and submit myself for consideration.

I don’t know that anyone else would even want the position, because it’s a stressful one, but still, I’m a little nervous. I mean, I’ve only been with the organization for six months; kind of soon to take over a role like this. As far as I know, anyway. Everyone was surprised when I was made deputy after only three months of participating, so I’m guessing that six months is a little soon.

It’s going to be a lot of work, but I think I’m ready. I just have to get my lazy butt up earlier (is that even possible?) and get cracking every day. Pay more attention to the myriad of groups and pages and sites and events and … well, anyway, if I get the position, I’ll have my hands full.

Fingers crossed!