The Hallowe’en Epic

ep‧ic  /ˈɛpɪk/ [ep-ik]
–adjective Also, ep‧i‧cal.

  1. noting or pertaining to a long poetic composition, usually centered upon a hero, in which a series of great achievements or events is narrated in elevated style: Homer’s Iliad is an epic poem.
  2. resembling or suggesting such poetry: an epic novel on the founding of the country.
  3. heroic; majestic; impressively great: the epic events of the war.
  4. of unusually great size or extent: a crime wave of epic proportions. –noun
  5. an epic poem.
  6. epic poetry.
  7. any composition resembling an epic.
  8. something worthy to form the subject of an epic: The defense of the Alamo is an American epic.
  9. (initial capital letter) Also called Old Ionic. the Greek dialect represented in the Iliad and the Odyssey, apparently Aeolic modified by Ionic.
  10. [Origin: 1580–90; epicus epikós. See epos, -ic]

I took 111 pictures yesterday. How many words are they worth?

Clearly, yesterday was indescribably long and impossibly full of activity. I actually couldn’t comprehend that everything had happened within 24 hours, until today really. Crazy. I’m going to try and cover everything in the longest post in the history of blogging (forgive me). I highly doubt anyone’s interested in my recollection (so I’ll keep it short), but I promised to post pix for people to copy and keep. To keep this easy, it’s going to be chronological.

L and I got up early to pick everyone up for the fieldtrip to McTavish Farm. Somehow all 5 of us crammed into L’s tiny Paseo (I don’t recommend attempting this) and drove out to the “moors”. The weather was perfect for this field trip – grey and misty. And it didn’t rain for once.

When we arrived, we were informed that the animals had been paired up for breeding, so we visited their various little ‘domestic’ areas. Here’s one of the “boys” who was too young for parenthood:

He liked the camera a lot, though.

And here is the ewe, Shawn, of whose fleeces I own two. I’m working with her first lamb’s fleece (2 -3 lbs) and a second one (1lb left after Sheep to Shawl). Shetland sheep have an interesting tendency to change coat/ fleece colours during the year. Her lambswool was pure black, but her second fleece was black at one end and silver at the other.

Here she is, reverting back to the black, we think:


We then went down to visit the rest of the flock, and were informed that the farm had a new addition: a flock of ducks. Indian Running Ducks, apparently. They’re flightless, and are slightly reminiscent of penguins in their streamlined appearance:

Eventually, we made our way down to see the sheep. Some actually came to meet us:

rather quickly, all told.

Anyway, here are the girls (T, K, L, and M) petting Elektra (brown) and Annabelle (white); both of whom’s fleece I’ve bought. I’m maybe 60% through Elektra’s (4 lbs!) and haven’t started on Annabelle’s (2 lbs, 10 oz!) – luckily,M and I split Annabelle’s fleece. Somehow I always manage to pick the smallest sheep with the largest fleeces, it’s a weird talent I guess:


M and I saw Annabelle at OF&F and both cried that we had to have it. Like many Shetland sheep, her coat changed colours this year – from copper to cream. It’s gorgeous, has a fantastic staple and is soooo soft. Just lovely, all I need to do now is clean my half. Anyway…

K petting Elektra:

L was a bit disappointed by the fact that none of the sheep approached her, so T (one of the owners) lured one over to her (Elektra was more than willing to accept any attention):


K, M, and T petting Annabelle:

M petting (cuddling, anyone?) with Rainbow:


After playing with the sheep, we went inside to warm up. T had made an apple cobbler for our consumption and tea. The girls fell onto the wool like starving animals (it was a bit frightening, I’ll admit) and, as a result, we definitely cleared T & T out of wool. But!, I was good and only got my half of Annabelle’s fleece (see? I shared, too!) and resisted the urge to buy 10oz of gorgeous burgundy Shetland roving. I was strong -> L helped by commanding me not to buy anything else.

At noon, L all but physically dragged us from the house to leave – we had bread to bake and the Hallowe’en party to prep for. After dropping everyone off, we started in on the Hallowe’en party preparations. Which were, quite honestly, slightly disastrous. The final product was wonderful, yummy bread!, but L was unhappy with the texture.

While the Foccaccia was rising, I started to help L with fitting her Uniquely You dressform. I now have even more respect for seamstress than before, if that was possible, for ever fitting one of these. The Costume Shop (@ UO) had several, which just scares me in retrospect. The instructions were insane, and just… oy. I was really worried I’d get something wrong and ruin it. I was also really worried about poking L with pins in sensitive places – since she was only wearing a slip underneath this thing. I managed to poke her only once, but I also manage to pin the form to the slip.

Yay, me.

We got two seams opened, four darts sewn (did I mention we had to set up the sewing machine in the dining room?) and the breasts partially fitted before the bread had risen and was finished baking (L dashed in and out of the kitchen, in the dressform, periodically to check the bread’s progress). Finally, at 4 o’clock we decided to get dressed up for the party.

Can I just say that having astigmatism sucks majorly? I was going as a Gypsy fortune-teller (okay, I randomly picked 3 peasant skirts, a loose blouse, my handwoven bodice, and a bunch of bangles from my closet) and had issues with make-up. I’m used to applying make-up half-blind, and usually manage to achieve a look that won’t scare children. Not last night, oh no. It took me three attempts to get the black eyeliner on. And don’t even get me started on the eyeshadow.

(note: at this point, I have been working on this post for 2.5 hours…)

Once dressed (I also grabbed my leather Venetian Carnivale mask for my costume on the way out) L and I went to gather the rest of our party – M and D. M, we decided, was Queen Eleanor I and D was the anthropomorphic personification of the drowned heroine – think Ophelia, the Lady of Shallot, Clementine, or the Rusalka folklore.

We arrived early, intending to help set up. I immediately had to take a pic of the gianormous owl poster for Emmos’ amusement:


Eventually, I went out to carve pumpkins whilst D helped M with her costume and L did something. Anyway… Once everyone was properly attired, we all got to work:
(I even got D to carve an owl pumpkin for Emmos.)

(don’t we look like we’re having fun??)
Peoples in costume:

(Sorry, M.)

The Ouiji exhibit set up upstairs was quite cool:

Then we went to play in the graveyard outside:


The girls got a little mist-happy with the fog machines:






When it got too cold, we went back inside. And then out again after warming up to play with apples. No, I am not joking (or: get your mind out of the gutter!). Ye Olde Harvest games – bobbing for apples, etc. I, of course, took pictures whilst laughing my @ss off. Having grown up near Amish country, I’ve bobbed for apples many a time, and didn’t feel the need to try again.

But, L hadn’t – so she started in on a hanging apple:
(To everyone’s amusement.)

See? I’m not the only one who had a camera…


After some teasing, L replied rather tartly, “it’s harder than it looks!” So, A stepped up to try.




Then, D as well – whilst M and I continued to giggle ourselves silly.



And, V and little T trying to catch apples, too:
D and T trying teamwork…

To their success:


And, L finally got ahold of her apple:

Whilst D and little T tried bobbing for apples:



Getting soaking wet in the process.

And, the Victory shots:


I think that’s everything. Forgive me if I forgot something. Mea culpa. We finally collapsed at home at around midnight. If this bored you, then it is truly an epic. If not, I’m always glad to be of service. Now, all I have to do is get Blogger to post this monstrosity.

(Note: 7.5 hours later. I hope it’ll finally publish)

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