Meet the kids

Meet the kids

I should share my love of my kids with the world, just to introduce the rest of the family. I have three of them. All furry and adorable. My Nigerian Dwarf Goat babies. Baphomet, the one without horns, is their daddy, and my bottle-fed baby that I was given when the breeder didn’t have the time to force-feed him. I was on a trip to pick up a friend’s animals, and there he was, this tiny two week old baby screaming in the breeder’s arms when we drive up. She said “here, you can go ahead and try to feed him.” and that’s all she wrote. He wouldn’t take a bottle and it takes a lot of time and patience to hold a bottle in a baby’s mouth, so she offered him to me. The other choice was letting him die.

Baby Boff 1Baby Boff 3Baby Boff 2Baby Boff 4

See how tiny he was? Funny thing now is that he is one of our largest goats. Go figure. hehe. Check out how cute he was when he finally started suckling on his own from the bottle:

The twins with their horns are Krampus and Rasputin.


And of course, I must share the story of the twin’s second names. Tanngrisnir (Teeth-barer) and Tanngnjóstr (teeth grinder). These are the names of Thor’s goats. And fitting, because Krampus is a screamer and Rasputin is more of the cud-chewer/follower. When I chose to adopt a Norse Persona for myself in the SCA, I gave them new names too. I love how goats are so important in Norse theology. The story is that not only would Thor use his two fierce goats to pull his chariot, when he stopped for the night he would kill, cook, and eat his goats for grand feasts, but he wouldn’t break the bones, and the next day the goats would resurrect and live again to pull his chariot. (Some great images here of Thor and his goats, check this out:

Baphomet will always be my baby boy, no other name needed… but I always hoped I’d have a doe someday so I could name her Heiðrun, after Odin’s goat who produced mead rather than milk… but hey, there is always the future!


My observation so far though, in all of this, is that there is a SERIOUS lack of goats in Norse artwork. In an article titled “Viking and Medieval Amulets in Scandinavia,” Signe Horn Fuglesang discusses the fact that theological animal imagery is apparently lacking from the archaeological record in a big way when it comes to clothing and adornments. Amulets in general are not quite clear, or could be interpreted as non-ritualistic imagery, but what is apparent to me is that the beautiful artwork you see with all those gorgeous celtic knots? Almost zero goats. You’d think both goats and cats would have more imagery (like Odin’s ravens and the many versions of dragons, dogs, and stags) since they are the steeds of two prominent gods in the Norse Pantheon, but they aren’t. (Freyja’s steeds are two cats) I’ve found a couple images of goat pieces created in metal, including a single brooch from a Danish dig in Zealand… check out the link of the goat imagery I linked earlier, but why the lack?

If I could, I’d learn old Norse, go back in time, and then learn all I could about these amazing people so many call “Barbarians.” I would love to see them (alive!), observe them, even live with them.

I guess until we invent a time machine then I will just have to be content to give my goats scritches and grain, make them chubby and happy, and read through all the archaeological information I can get my hands on. (THANK YOU GOOGLE TRANSLATE!!!)

Bibliography info: Fuglesang, S. H, 1989. Viking and medieval amulets in Scandinavia. Fornvännen
84, Stockholm.

Dressing Geisrik Geirson

Dressing Geisrik Geirson

Now that I posted about me, I want to talk about my favorite guy! Ryan is my better half, and doesn’t sew, but he is definitely the better cook out of the two of us, and he works leather, chops wood, and does all kinds of other manly things. As well as having an EPIC beard of awesome. I love him so much it makes my heart hurt sometimes.

So naturally, when we decided to become retinue for our friends during their time as Baron/Baroness, I needed to dress him properly! I employed my skills and created a linen shirt and a pair of Pumphosen, or pumpkin-butt pants for him.

First, the pants: These pants were created using images/notes of Swedish style pants from the Viking age. Here is an image of the page that I’ve found on Pinterest, but the actual re-enactment group from Scandinavia has taken down everything so I’m not sure where you can get the full image so that you can translate what it says: I didn’t use 9 yards as it suggested, but I did make each leg of his pants the full width of a 60 inch wide piece of wool fabric from the Pendleton Wool company. They have the square in the back, and the long strip up the crotch, then the two legs pleated to the waistband/legbands. The waistband and the legs are lined with silk. I finished the bands with whipstitch (the entire length) and they are all drawn shut with silk finger-braided chords. I didn’t fully line the legs because I was afraid that the wool on its own would be too much for him, as the step-up ceremony was a summer thing. To keep the fabric laying flat on the bands I chainstitched wool thread down the length to flatten the seam. I also re-enforced the holes that way.


He wears wool leg-wraps with hook enclosures I sewed on, but since they don’t stay up very well I’m going to get some leg garters for him. (I love the herringbone pattern of this fabric! Fabulous stuff.)

Created with Nokia Smart Cam

His blue shirt is made from cobalt blue linen I bought at I used a shirt that fit him well as an initial pattern to make sure it would be the right size, and the sleeves are a bit loose to allow for the wearing of a white linen undershirt in the future. His shirt has embroidery on it now as well.

When he isn’t wearing my recycled leather/fur hat like the picture above, he is wearing the Naalbound hat I made him, which I’m wearing here:


I’ve also started embellishing a basic red wool shirt for him. I’m going to turn the t-shirt style neckline into a keyhole neckline using blue wool left over from my apron dress. I’m also trimming the shirt with some of the Tablet-woven trim I made, to have it match my apron dress. (He looks so good in red, and I think the blue and yellow looks pretty nice with the red wool!)

Ryans red wool shirt
He also took an awesome class from a local Viking expert, and made himself a pair of blue leather turn-shoes. How amazing is that? I’m still waiting for him to make me a pair though…

Its been a year since we dived into the SCA full-time, but Ryan has been going since he was in high-school. (I don’t know if he realizes how jealous I am that he had that!) He never had a real persona before, but I’m happy that he has decided to make this journey with me.

Meet Geisrik Geirson, the Manly Swede that I’ve given my Norse heart to. 😀


Historical Costuming edition: Getting to know Aud

Historical Costuming edition!

Along with all my Cosplaying adventures I enjoy the realm of historical costuming. After I left the Army, I realized that history and anthropology were my #1 loves. I finished my associates degree with the majority of my classes dealing with those two areas specifically. Sadly, I realized that if I wanted to pursue it as a career, I’d have to do a great deal of traveling, so I didn’t continue on to university. Instead, I decided to concentrate on costuming and history on my own, so that I could stay local. (Though future vacations to Europe wouldn’t be refused!!!!) It also lets me get into the specific areas I want, and go at my own pace, without dealing with writing a ton of papers and spending time on things I really don’t care about.

One of the greatest ways to do that is to join groups like the SCA, or the Society for Creative Anachronism. Now, for a great history of the SCA, I recommend heading to their website, or, and reading up on it. I’ll let you do that when/if you feel the need. The basics you need to know for context here is that it is an international non-profit historical re-enactment group that concentrates on the medieval period, or roughly about the time between the fall of Rome and the reign of Queen Elizabeth I. (Though some enjoy portraying classical times too, Greek and Roman history is popular in some groups.) Their focus is education, and it is very appealing to me for many reasons.

First reason? You go camping IN COSTUME. I love camping, and its even MORE fun in huge groups in costume, with fighting tourneys and merchants thrown into the mix. Now, not all of the events are camping events, there are lots of single-day events, feasts, etc., but camping is my favorite.

Second reason I love it? FIBER ARTS! WEEEEEE! OMG I LOVE YARN. Yarn is the best. Seriously. A group that loves all the great historical aspects of yarn? Sign me up! Yarn is infinitely useful, and this group appreciates it. Naalbinding, knitting, weaving, its all important for this group, and these are some of my favorite activities.

And of course, there is the costuming. Costumes EVERYWHERE!!!!! For everyone! From your most basic T-tunic, to the most elaborate Tudor and Renaissance Italy costumes! You choose a time period and a culture, find a name, and play that person! Some people go all out, from beds, tents, feast gear (plates and utensils), underwear, winter-wear, and several outfits.

So hello! My name is Fru Auðný Refsdóttir, and I’m a Norse lady from the Mammen period, or 800-900 CE. The costume above is my basic “fancy” costume, and I continuously add to it. Here are a couple of my new editions, some tablet-woven trim in a Kivrim pattern and my yellow underdress with herringbone embroidery work!

Created with Nokia Smart Camyellow underdress

I even bought a Viking era reproduction tent this year, in my favorite colors!

Viking tent

But the thing I’m most excited about is this:


Now that I have my Award of Arms, I have a coat of arms! I’m submitting this for approval, so cross your fingers for me! What could be better than goats and yarn???

Tank, Please come home…

Tank, Please come home...

My Kitty is missing. 😦 I want him home so much.
You may not know this, but my kitty, Count Von Tankenstein, is the best cat in the world.
We got him from a friend who wanted him to have a better life, and he was mostly an outdoor kitteh. No litterbox, great for us because Manbeast is allergic.
He was feral at first, growling and hissing as he carefully walked up to us and sniffed at us, and he was a ball of scabs and fleas.
After flea meds, and special food, he started to heal, and he started to purr instead of hiss.
He started coming inside, a little at a time, until he was sleeping indoors with us at night because winter was setting in.
He would bring us dead presents, sometimes whole things and sometimes just bits, but we knew it was because he thought we were stupid and couldn’t hunt for ourselves. He even brought me a live one once and stared at me through the glass doors as he bit down on it, as if to say “This is what I could do to you hooman.”
He would attack me if I was rough-housing with my other half, because he knew it was his job to protect daddy from me at all costs. Even during sexy-times.
He never ate my yarn, even if I was knitting with him in my lap, and the yarn dangled over his face.
He always growled at solicitors and church people who would stop by the house and ring the bell.
He was shot by teenagers with B-B guns, survived, and has the shots still stuck under his skin on his head and neck. We call them his “war wounds.”
He would help me chase the goats off the porch if they went where they didn’t belong.
He loves head scritches, but disdains all other forms of affection, unless you wish to pick him up at the end of the driveway and carry him to the door (oh so far.)
He has no hair on his chin, like his father before him.

We’ve had you for several years, but we thought we had so many more ahead of us.

Please Kitteh. I can’t ever replace you. I miss you. Please come home.