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About LadyWordsmith

  • Birthday 08/20/1980


  • Member Title
    Herder of Cats

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  • Interests
    Fantasy, Science Fiction, Films, Writing, Art, Music, Theatre, Horseback Riding, Cooking, and many other varied interests. ;)
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  1. The job sounds awesome, Lily! The Con was definitely a blast. Lots of work, but a good time. Which is nice, because I'm going to be spending a lot of the summer working on developing new curriculum for work for next year. At least we'll be getting paid for the additional time since it's outside of our regular teacher contracts, so the extra income will be appreciated.
  2. Awesome! We are finally done with the school year. I spent Memorial Day weekend in Kansas helping a friend with her department at Naka-Kon. 😸 She runs the Cultural Events department that handles more traditional Japanese activities, as well as the opening and closing skits (the Con mascot has an actual ongoing storyline and cast of characters to interact with).
  3. Glad you're feeling better Ryrin! You could say hobbies ate my life for a couple of months really. lol. (The SCA tends to do that). I taught my A&S Classes, did my big scribal display for the Laurels, and we've had a bunch going on with the kingdom scribal college (still running that for another year), and I am Event Stewarding for our local Baronial event in April (training a new co-event steward as I go), and we're doing a Robin Hood theme which should be pretty fabulous. We've got a few folks cast as various characters and a bunch of activities themed to fit the event. Should be fun! Work has been an ongoing drama of looking for new curriculum for next year. The curriculum we have is very old and won't be supported after this year we are told (contract ends, company is getting rid of it.... we're online so it's not like we can just keep working from existing stuff when it will literally not be online anymore). The school is totally with on this so we're looking at a variety of alternatives but don't know yet what we'll be teaching specifically next year yet for High School English. (The default offering from the parent company is horrible and we have flat out refused to teach it. The other schools in the system that have been using it in its beta years all hate it so far). At this point I'm looking forward to Spring Break.
  4. We invited a few friends over for New Years and had a quiet game night with food. πŸ™‚ Then the winter SCA season kicked in crazy here and I've been teaching piles of classes and getting ready for some A&S displays. All good stuff, just busy!
  5. LadyWordsmith


    Oh those do look delicious! I did molasses peanut butter earlier this season, and before that Snickerdoodles (my son's request during his college finals week). Last week it was mint-chocolate chip cookies. Since we still have some of both, I will probably make the peppermint snowballs next week. There's only three of us in the house so I spread out the cookies. πŸ™‚
  6. LadyWordsmith


    Those all look delicious! I just finished making these cookies (I call them 'C4' they are Cream cheese cinnamon clove) for a friend. I invented the recipe last February. I also love using this little cat cookie mold I have.
  7. I'm glad you had a good Hanukkah! We are finally on Winter Break both at work, and my son has finished his first college semester successfully. The Indian Food feast for our local Yule Revel went off today smashingly well. I'm very relieved and happy that everyone enjoyed it. Now I can just relax and enjoy the holidays.
  8. I like Dr. Pepper Zero (it's much tastier than the original Diet DP, and comes in four flavors), and the Caffeine Free Coke Zero is, so far, the tastiest Coke. I'm not a huge fan of Coke (for a small number of years pre-Covid they had Splenda Coke, and that was tastier than aspartame coke. But it seems to have disappeared completely along with many varieties of things that didn't survive those years). I liked the diet Pepsi products better for the couple of years where they had swapped from aspartame to Splenda, but apparently those didn't sell as well because they went back a few years ago. The mango and cherry diet flavors are still pretty good, though not my favorites. Most of what I drink though is tea. lol
  9. It's amazing how many there are. At this point when I'm baking for other people I just ask everyone who will be coming what their sweetener preferences and what they can/can't have are because I know people who can't have regular sugar, but also plenty who can't have any number of the other alternatives for a wide variety of health reasons. (And a few who just can't stand the taste of some of the artificial alternatives, which is also valid). Then I alter recipes accordingly. (Aspartame actually causes near-homicidal rage as their body's reaction for one friend's mother. Medically verified. She's forbidden from touching it by her whole family). So far I think I haven't yet met someone who can't have honey (but I'm sure there are people who can't). I can have most of them, (Stevia's the weird one out which is a shame since it tastes better than most of the others to me), so I just figure if I'm cooking for people I want them to be able to eat and enjoy it. πŸ™‚ It's not hard to swap them out.
  10. You could probably use an artificial sweetener in applesauce without issue! I bet there are recipes online to recommend how much. I know both of these can be cooked safely into food. (A point of clarification: the non-brand name for Splenda is sucralose. Stevia is natural and comes from a plant. I can have Splenda, but I can't have Stevia for medical reasons, so I make a point of not mixing them up! They put Stevia in a lot of pre-blended tea flavors these days which I find frustrating.) I suspect the Stevia would go better with the flavor profile of the applesauce though. πŸ™‚ I really enjoy unsweetened applesauce. I like the idea of just starting with a nicely balanced apple. (We got some fabulous McIntosh's at Sprouts that I used for our apple pie today and they were delightful. They're a favorite of mine but they almost never seem to have them at grocery stores in the center of the country.)
  11. The version we have has almonds in it, and we use the red sauce. πŸ™‚ I don't actually have the cookbook this came out of (a friend scanned me the image). You can use any modern pie dough recipe for the tarts. Though I can ask for the specific dough recipe if needed. There's a variety of recipes for candying citrus peels. https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/simple-candied-orange-peel-350798 Admittedly, I've also bought candied citrus peel on Amazon to save time (last year we made tarts for 100 people and I did not want to candy that much orange!). I've been ordering OliveNation Candied Orange Peel Slices (for specific brand). There may be others but theirs are very close to how it would come out home-made and so I've been happy with them.
  12. Homemade applesauce is wonderful! That's fabulous. Funny enough, one of our family's traditional Thanksgiving dishes is apparently a Norwegian Christmas traditional dish. When I was a kid we always had Thanksgiving with the family of one of my Dad's college friends, the Nordviks. Her father came over to Canada from Norway during WWII, and then married and eventually ended up here in the US. So every year she would make riskrem since we were together for Thanksgiving, but always had other things going on at Christmas. She shared the recipe with us, and I still make it. πŸ™‚ I can't say most of what we make at my house is "traditional" in the sense of what most Americans make. Turkey is probably my least favorite bird, so we have taken to making different meats almost every Thanksgiving and Christmas for years now (rotating back to favorites, but maybe trying different recipes). This year we are roasting duck, and grilling fish. We've also done venison in the past. One year I pulled out my Colonial cookbook and tried a clam-and-lobster pie that was common in taverns during the colonial period (when clams and lobsters were considered peasant food because they were plentiful and cheap). We do green beans in the Southern style (which is to say they are slow cooked for hours with onions and bacon). We usually skip the "stuffing/dressing" because I either find them dry if baked in a pan, or weirdly too wet if cooked inside a bird. For bread this year I'm making bialys instead of any particular type of rolls. Just because we all really love them (and I can't buy them where I live because there isn't a Kosher deli or bakery anywhere in the state), and we can eat them for days. Also playing with pie (we try all sorts of pies on top of the traditional ones), and this year I'm using an apple tart recipe I used in a medieval feast last year, but just turning it into one large pie instead of trying to make a bunch of little tarts. The recipe includes candied orange peels, honey, rose water, and it matches very nicely with the flavor of the apples. Including the tart recipe in case anyone is interested.
  13. Yes! I've wanted to go to Chincoteague since I was 6? The first time I read "Misty of Chincoteague" by Marguerite Henry. (They made a movie of it called "Misty" in 1961.) There's a whole series of those, plus some fictionalized histories of other famous real horses that she also wrote (Disney made "Justin Morgan had a Horse" in '72 based on her book by the same name). The irony is I grew up in Virginia, but it was still over a 6 hour drive to get there because of how round-about you have to go to get to the islands, and I never managed to talk my parents into taking us on a trip there. So it's on my 'romantic trips once my son is out of college and my husband and I can afford it' list. Oh yes, Ireland, Iceland, and Israel would also be awesome! For Israel I'd probably want to talk my cousin into going with me as a tour guide. She went to college there.
  14. Congrats! If money were no object I'd recommend traveling to places you've always wanted to go. (For me those would include a long wandering trip through England and Scotland where I could poke my nose into every first hand experience and historical location and library I could get myself into. πŸ˜‰ And a trip to Japan as well.) Then I'd probably go back to places I love that are not close by and I could never live there (I would totally zip back to NYC for short trips if I could afford it. I love Manhattan, but it requires a constant state of 'awareness' in public I just can't maintain. And of course, then there's the cost. lol). In the case of Manhattan in particular (on the 'do in the place' which I can recommend having actually been there bunches) category I always recommend The Cloisters, seeing a show or twelve on Broadway because I love live theatre (watching and doing and they have so many different types), the museums, and then there's a bunch of little places down in the East Village and historical little restaurants and stores and Italian bakeries and the like that the locals know and love that I always recommend because "real Manhattan" in the decent areas is so much better than just "Tourist Manhattan." My 'close' dream vacation is Chincoteague and Assateague islands. I want to camp on a beach in a park full of 'wild' ponies, and explore the nature preserve. (I used to want to go for the Pony Penning like in the books, but I watched it live online last year and you have to book months in advance and now it's 'super' crowded during the big event. So I'd rather go at a quieter time of year). Where 'would' you love to go? πŸ™‚
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