Friday, October 26, 2007

Article in T.I., and interview

For the first time in thirty years, I didn't get a T.I.
The explanation involves separate memberships, two T.I.s coming, then one T.I. coming, and me thinking it was Gunwaldt's and him not even thinking about it at all.

So I did get a copy and a Tournaments Illuminated t-shirt for being a contributor (gold on black! My barony's colors, and my household's colors!)

The editor wanted to use something I wrote long ago in Bright Ideas, "Concrete Suggestions for Helping Newer Members."

A new title was negotiated, and it became "Help Newcomers Directly."

Beacuse it's not very long, the editor wanted to fill up the space with an interview. I think the desired response was "Newcomers are the most important part of the SCA," but that's not the response I gave. Still, the topic of the interview was to have been about newcomers.

Because I'm an oldtimer I wish every member still got Tournaments Illuminated. Not so many do anymore. Not even me, I discovered to my sorrow the other day.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

thirty years ago, almost...

Two months from now, thirty years ago, I sent an application/resume/introduction/biography to the seneschal of Atenveldt, because I had been appointed (not so legally, I found out later, when the Aten Seneschal pointed it out...) It wasn't really an application, because I was already "in office" (though I could've been taken out).

When I joined, it was generally believed and held in Atenveldt (maybe more broadly; I forget) that the feminine form of "seneschal" needed an "e" at the end. If they were going off formations like Michelle from Michel, they should've doubled the "l" but no matter. The whole deal was dropped before long.

This was done on a typewriter, naturally; everything was then. I have carbon copies of many letters. (Yuck, carbon copies—may you never see or touch one if you haven't already.)

Within just a few years, I had a Kaypro computer with a daisy-wheel printer, then a Mac IIsi with a laser printer, and before I knew it, here I am looking back 30 years.

I think the benefits and disadvantages of one time and place or another are six of one, half a dozen of the other. It evens out. We had more newness and opportunity but less information and example. Nowadays one can learn more just clicking around the internet than we could've learned in a year of dusty library stacks where we were lucky to find black and white line drawings (or occasionally color plates, but nothing like we have now in books and on the internet).

Blogs and webpages are way better, even though less medieval, than typewriters and carbon paper.

Enjoy your SCA life. Enjoy your mundane life, and if you have other side-lives, find the joy in them too.

Sunday, October 14, 2007


Humility's hard to keep up with. I forget, I get grumpy, I work through my tools and tricks again.
I know, too, that it's been the hardest thing for some people to understand when we've discussed it here, and hard for people to transfer from the SCA to regular life. I'm glad to have found some recent and "mundane" things (if something so useful in the SCA and to one's immediate peace can be considered that).

Humility: A modern explanation and example, and link to another site.

I added a link to the bottom of the lists of virtues.

Friday, October 12, 2007

easy contact page, and camping

Streamlined, direct contact, easy to remember. (Well, easier than

I've moved camping links to a central location and will add more. Recommendations (or writings, or checklists, or photos of your camp or of medieval camps, or links to camping pages already out there) are welcome.

Friday, August 03, 2007

AElflaed the Anchoress

After years of always the same, I've made a little change in the status of my persona.

The special art (over there at the right, and also on the pages below) is by Galen (sometimes known as Bo) who was at the Readstan philosophy discussion a week and a half ago with me and Asta.

The first time I ever heard of the concept of "anchorite" was when I was a teenager and read a novel, years before I was in the SCA. In recent years quite a bit of research has been done, partly because of a surge of interest in archeology in England, partly because of Women's Studies and the interest in a class of previously marginalized historical figures, and partly because of the internet itself, by which people can share their ideas and research and photos so quickly.

This idea has interested me for a long long time, though. If anyone has more I could add to my pages there, please let me know.
Later is as good as now. I'll keep working on it over the years.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

"Welcoming Newcomers" pages upgraded

In the Welcoming Newcomers section of Bright Ideas, two pages have been redone. The second one never did have scans of the letters to which it referred, and someone pointed that out. There are a couple of paragraphs and some links following that, too, from the original writings.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Change isn't really a constant

I've commandeered this blog. It was to have been dedicated to ThinkWell, but I couldn't get the address thinkwell.blogblahblahblah, so I used Duckford. That's fine, because some of the recent announcements have been my more personal stuff and I hate for a blog to just sit so quietly, so although this will still definitely contain ThinkWell news (when there is any), it will not be so limited.

Site announcements by e-mail:, or you can read through the older site news there.

That's me, Lore de Lorraine of Atenveldt (the former Princesss Lorene of the Outlands), and the honored Kate Holford, of Caerthe. We were watching a tournament at Grand Outlandish, the other day.

If you want to look at lots more photos of Outlandish or other recent events, go here and poke around:

Tuesday, June 12, 2007


For the benefit of recent philosophy partners, I've added something to the page on mindfulness, about "self-reverence, self-knowledge, self-control..."

It's not earth-moving, but it's okay. Look in the box at the bottom.

Guest Fest continues, for a while. Soon the unschooling conferences start to pile up and I'll be out of town too many days in August, September, early October.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Two anniversaries in one

Thirty years ago this Grand Outlandish (5/29 to be more precise, but Outlandish is close enough), the Outlands became a principality within Atenveldt. The same day Gunwaldt, who later became my husband, was made a Master of Arms.

Thirty years.


I've put up a photo of the petition for the Outlands principality status here:
along with some commentary written sixteen years ago.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

New Students

Here's me, a few days ago, happy that I had just taken a new student, Lady Kymma Godric. Kymma is the chronicler of al-Barran and Wimble Herald of the Outlands.

In February I took Karl of Gulbjorn for a year and a day even though he was very new to the Society, because his potential and interest, courtesy and modesty stunned me.

Artan has this squire who's bursting with questions and ideas and the desire to learn, in a season when Artan is busy being King of the Outlands. So Lord Dermod of Killarney is kind of majoring in Artan and minoring in AElflaed.

I'm invigorated.

The photo is by Kymma's daughter, Sierra, and any of the links above should lead you to other photos of that and recent days.

The Wednesday night philosophy discussion series ended, as their regular Wednesday night fighter practice resumed when it got lighter and warmer. I would've mourned its loss longer had the replacement Monday night discussion not turned out to be wonderful!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Knowledge of Progress—self-awareness

Here's a list of ways one might know whether he's making progress toward being better (whatever "better" he might be headed toward, though this was in the context of practicing virtues). The came out of a philosophy discussion last week:

other people's reactions

consciousness of self

discovery [things work better and more easily than they did before]

external feedback / manifestations

reflection before and after

Does anyone here have other indicators to add, or ideas on these?

Friday, January 12, 2007

Bio page and Issue #6

The old TW issues are up to #6 now.

Biographies are starting to need a place to go. Several back issues contain bios current at that time, and some of the new posters who weren't involved before (and some who were) have posted bio information on the yahoo list. Here's the beginning of a collection: