Posted by: Judy | October 20, 2017

Good News Friday

*Walk with my sister and P.croissant

*Cinnamon toast croissant and hot chocolate with whipped cream

*Homemade chocolate chip cookies that I haven’t made in years

*Odd blessing: I’d planned to attend a wedding, last Saturday, but I couldn’t shake the feeling I shouldn’t go. Friday, I finally decided I wouldn’t go. The truck I would have been traveling in lost it’s transmission part way there. The passengers ended up traveling for 4 hours, instead of 1-1/2. My back is grateful I missed that adventure. Blessedly, the wedding went well, with none of our mishaps. 🙂

*Lunch with friends at Kneaders

*Dave’s classic BLT on country white ~ Yummy!

*Satisfying last book in a seven-book series

*Homemade lunch with a friend

*Homemade soup ~ I think I’ve finalized the recipe… maybe.

*My friend and fellow author, Donna Keevers Driver, created several memes for me from my books. Below, is one.

What was something good in your week?

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Posted by: Judy | October 19, 2017

There and Back Again Day 9

Awake shortly after 5 AM, packed, and eating breakfast at 6AM. We were on the road by 6:30 AM. West side of Georgia to Alabama, down Alabama almost to Montgomery and west, across Mississippi, Louisiana, and into Texas.

The view from the highway, when it wasn’t raining. It rained most of the way, sometimes so hard it was difficult to see. We gained an hour and arrived in Katy, Texas, about 7 PM. We ate dinner and decide to continue on home to L’s, as it was only 1-1/2 hours away. L’s family kindly accommodated us on short notice.

Posted by: Judy | October 18, 2017

There and Back Again Day 8

One more breakfast buffet at the Trustees’ Table. Many of us attended as a last meal together. There were a few more things scheduled, but we needed to head home. As soon as we finished breakfast, we checked out and drove to Georgia.

The trees were beginning to change.

I’m grateful I was able to see a little fall.

Thanks God.

We dropped off S at home and continued on to the other side of Atlanta, stopping for the night at the Comfort Inn Airport. I only noticed the planes the first few times. Then it reminded me of the air purifier in my room and was quite comforting. We ended the evening with pizza delivered to our room. It was yummy.

Posted by: Judy | October 17, 2017

There and Back Again Day 7

The last full day of 4LEP. I had no trouble waking every morning. I discovered that Benadryl is helpful with motion sickness. It also helped me sleep better.

Saturday morning’s Dr. Drout session was titled “Bindo Bolger-Baggins? Marmaduke Brandybuck? Revise! Revise! Revise!” This appealed to my writing side. It inspired me to tackle the editing of my current WIP (Work In Progress). It was fun to hear Tolkien’s process, learning how elements changed as the story progressed. My writer’s heart reveled in the sense of connectedness.

Classes I missed: Penny Whistle lessons; dance lessons; camping tips; siege engine class; classes offered by Dr. Amy Sturgis comparing LOTR with Harry Potter and Star Wars; craft classes; writing group; choir; weapons classes; costuming classes, and more.

The afternoon and evening was spent at the Party Field, where an archery competition took place before dinner.

The Party Field on Wednesday morning.

The Party Field the night of the Hungry Hobbits. Dinner consisted of a delicious meatloaf, green beans, salsify (salsifee) casserole, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin bread. Delicious! My thanks and congratulations to the caterer for producing tasty meals while avoiding the major allergies.

Entertainment included dancing, skits, choir performances, a reading in Old English of a bit of Beowolf by Dr. Drout, Bilbo Baggins’ famous speech (done brilliantly), and long goodbyes.

Many returned to the Dancing Pony in the basement of the West Family Dwelling, which is where our little group called home. I’m not a fan of closed in places crowded with a lot of people. I chose to go to bed, as usual. I felt rested by the end. It was wonderful. I was afraid it would be noisy, but the soundproofing was amazing.

The whole thing came together because so many are dedicated to doing what needs to be done. Bilbo Baggins swore the first ALEP would be a one-off. We’re all looking forward to ALEP 5, in 3 years. The success was due to his hard work, along with his partner in crime, Pippin. By the way, a fun side note is that Pippin met his future wife at the first ALEP.

The Adventure isn’t over.

Posted by: Judy | October 16, 2017

There and Back Again Day 6

Awake around 7 AM to face a busy day. I planned to attend a bunch of workshops. I ended up only attending those presented by Dr. Michael Drout. Next time, I’ll attend more. This year, it was about learning to embrace the adventure and take care of me.

I walked to breakfast, meeting S at the Trustees’ Table. I wanted to take pictures of the sunrise and will share them as my pretty picture for the day. a way to stretch out my enjoyment.

This tree has been dubbed an Entwife, one of Tolkien’s character that you never actually meet. Entwives are spoken of by Treebeard, an Ent.

I attended both classes presented by Dr. Drout, “Tolkien and the Artifact” and “Tolkien’s Medieval Scholarship.” The room was packed, both times.

Friday night was the Baddies night. Some of the outfits were astonishing. We had goblins, orcs, trolls, the Witch King, Ringwraiths, and Lobelia Sackville-Baggins. LOL!

Dinner at the barn started with Kentucky Burgoo. My least favorite meal of the whole adventure. I’m not a fan of chili or soup (except my tomato soup haha). The peach cobbler was yummy.

Many returned to continue the party at the Dancing Pony/Green Dragon until 2 AM. I slept. I know, boring, but I was grateful for the restorative rest.

Posted by: Judy | October 15, 2017

Inspiration from social media

Don’t shy away from something that the Lord is trying to lead to because you feel AFRAID, inadequate, or unprepared. When God says it’s time, it IS time. When HE says you are ready, then you ARE ready.

~ Positivity Inspires

If God asks me to move a mountain it is my job to bring a shovel and start digging, then God will move the mountain.

~ Ruth, my sister

Posted by: Judy | October 14, 2017

Silly Saturday

LOTR humor posted on Funny Cats widget

Posted by: Judy | October 13, 2017

Good News Friday

*Walk and P.croissant with my sister

*Lemon croissant and hot chocolate with whipped cream

*Yummy pumpkin bread made by my great niece

*Cooler weather, only in the 90s

*Bible study

*Learning to find healthier options

*Enjoying the memories of my Adventure

*Lunch with a dear friend

*Homemade soup ~ I think I’ve found the final recipe.

*Laughter

What was something good in your week?

Posted by: Judy | October 12, 2017

There and Back Again Day 5

The first full day of ALEP started with First Breakfast. Only S and I chose to pay for the breakfast buffet at the Trustees’ Table, served here:

Bacon was a must. I also enjoyed yogurt, roasted potatoes, and delicious spiced apples. I passed on the sausage, eggs, and grits.

My friends took me on a tour of the area. It’s been nine years since my last visit. They shared stories of ALEPs I’d missed. It’s mostly walking everywhere. The shoes I’d bought at our local Renaissance Fair, about 12 years ago, were prefect.

We kept lunch simple, eating in our living room from things we’d brought. I put my feet up for a while. My plan was to attend the lecture offered by Dr. Michael Drout, who teaches at Wheaton College, in Massachusetts. His flight was cancelled, and he didn’t make it until that evening. He loves Tolkien, too, and has studied him extensively. I remember him from my first ALEP. He hasn’t missed any.

Thursday night, I chose the green skirt and a blue peasant-type blouse. Dinner at the barn included Cider Glazed Pork Loin, veggies, rolls, and a Brownie. More entertainment. We also had a special tribute to one of our own. Jef Murray was a gifted artist. I met him at the first ALEP, but became better acquainted with him and his wife on social media. Two years ago, I was waiting for him to post his Tuesday picture, always a treat, and it never came. The next day it was posted that he had passed away suddenly. We’d all lost a dear friend much too soon. A beautiful slideshow was prepared, and those of us who wanted to carried the lanterns from the barn back to the dwellings. Master Baggins and a few others who created and ran ALEP offered fond memories of Jef’s enthusiasm in the ALEP project. He was also an original presenter and never missed. His absence is deeply felt, even now.

I took some time to find a quiet moment alone. The moon was full or close to it. The skies were clear and stars filled the black expanse. I’m able to see a few stars here in the Valley. Orion is visible. There, in the village, there’s only the lights along the paths and shining from within the buildings. I’d forgotten what a blanket of stars looked like.

Posted by: Judy | October 11, 2017

There and Back Again Day 4

The official start of ALEP. Registration started at noon. However, there were things to do, starting with First Breakfast. We chose to eat at Village Inn. The others, L, S, and T, had all eaten there before. I was trusting them from beginning to end.

This is not the chain “Village Inn.” It’s a little place you’d overlook if you didn’t know what you were looking for and might bypass if you judged the place by first glance. Not fancy would be putting it mildly. It was… comfortable, well worn type comfortable. No table clothes. No matching tables or chairs. I’d been craving biscuits and gravy, not something I’ve successfully made myself. It wasn’t expensive and hoped I’d made a good choice. Oh. My. Goodness! I will never be able to eat biscuits and gravy anywhere else ever again. It was heaven on a plate. Big, fluffy biscuits covered in a tasty gravy that blessedly wasn’t over-peppered. Yes, this is my cheat food for pepper. I didn’t even feel like I was cheating. It was simply delicious.

I have never been with a group and talked and laughed so much. We had to cram in as much as possible because it will be another three years before we meet up again.

Lights needed to be untangled and checked for the Party Field, for the Saturday night activity. S was helping with registration, so L, J, and I helped T with the lights. By the time we finished, it was time for Lunch. I was still full, but the others wanted to visit Kentucky Fudge, on Harrodsburg’s Main Street. It has all kinds of historical memorabilia from when the place was an old pharmacy and soda shop. “I’m going on an adventure!” I went along. L and S had been bragging about the malts available. I ordered a chocolate malt. Oh. My. Goodness! I have to wait three years to order another one. Planning ahead. The others were tempted by the grilled cheese sandwiches. I was tempted but not hungry enough to follow through. The malt was enough.

Back to the Shaker Village. We officially registered at the West Family Dwelling, where we also lived. The fun begins, well, more fun begins. My help wasn’t needed in registration, but they needed help in the Trading Post. Some attendees brought products they’d made to sell, clothes, pottery, jewelry, CDs from Marc Gunn, who plays the autoharp, and yes, you can find his music online. L and I went over to see if help was needed there.

Master Baggins taught those present how to ring up a purchase using mine. Yes, I’m still horse crazy. I planned this purchase. The White Tree and the Banner of Rohan. I couldn’t choose.

I took time to put my feet up before dinner. I wore the brown stretch velvet gown. I rode with S to the barn, for dinner. It’s an old tobacco drying barn. We were fed half a roasted chicken and vegetable, like zucchini, and Shaker Lemon pie. Well fed and entertained by Marc and skits prepared by attendees.

The western view from barn the first evening of the official opening of ALEP.

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