Fantasy Faire 2019 – Builders of Hope

Last year I was delighted to be invited to Fantasy Faire as a Literary Festival featured author, and I want to pay it back. This year, in honor of my dad, lost to lung cancer this past Autumn, I’m participating behind-the-scenes at the Faire, tending to some of the necessary proofreading, editing, and webmistressing. The Faire takes place in Second Life, as part of the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life events.

If you think that virtual worlds only exist to shoot zombies or run raids, think again. Second Life is a world – not a game. It’s completely created by its residents, and a lot goes on in here. This year our Literary Festival will welcome author Elizabeth Bear as our special guest, and we will pay tribute to Ursula K. Le Guin.

Fantasy Faire in Second Life has emerged anew from the mists of the virtual world to create a new and immersive fantasy-inspired experience each year for the past eleven years. Since the 2015 Faire, writers have gathered to pen new stories and poems inspired by the Fairelands as part of the annual LitFest. And though the Fairelands disappear back into the mists every year, the stories remain to inspire and transport.

Please click the poster to be taken to our press release – you’ll be taken to the Fantasy Faire website, so have a look around while you’re there. I’m especially invested in the Literary Festival, which you can find under the “Events” menu tab at the top of any page. We are still adding content as opening day approaches, but you won’t mind our dust, as it’s sparkly magical fairy dust!

Fantasy Faire 2019

The First Annual Doll Fest-For-All

For Immediate Release

February 15, 2019

DOLL DUO DECLARES MARCH 3 DOLL DAY DEBUT

Second Life Steamlands Residents Seek To Foster Doll Culture 

The Steamlands of Second Life, February 15, 2019 – On March 3, 2019, from pm to 8 pm SLT, Fitch Lekvoda and Nika Thought-werk, residents of the Steamlands of Second Life will host a doll-themed bash at the New Crystal Rose Airship in Caledon Kittwickshire. The title of the event is ‘The First Annual Doll Fest-For-All.’

The event is free and meant as a celebration of doll culture in Second Life. It occurs on the day of the Japanese Doll Festival, but it is open to all residents. Music will be provided by Miss Fitch Lekvoda throughout the event, with dancing in the Crystal Rose’s ballroom.

In the lobby, Second Life authors will be on-hand to sell copies of their books for use in Second Life. In addition, two panel discussions are planned. From 6:00 pm to 6:30 pm, Ceejay Writer will discuss her works and the world of Industralia. From 7:00 pm to 7:30 pm, individuals who take part in Second Life’s doll culture will discuss what being a doll means to them and how to get involved in being a doll.

For more information, or to take part in one of the planned panels, individuals are encouraged to contact either Fitch Lekvoda or Nika Thought-werk in Second Life by 12:00 pm on Thursday, February 28, 2019. This contact should be in the form of a note card – with the title of ‘Interested in the Doll-Fest-For-All 2019.’

The New Crystal Rose Airship Ballroom

Starlight Mint Surprise Cookies

This simple, delicious cookie is a Christmas family tradition I inherited from my mother in law. My husband has enjoyed these cookies since he was a child, and still gets excited about the prospect of enjoying one or possibly six. His inner child is never far from the surface, and can always be lured out with a tasty treat.

I found a nice article about this cookie that ran in the Chicago Tribune in April, 2015. It seems the Holutas are not the only family that adores Starlight Mint Surprise Cookies! The article goes into some detail about the challenge of obtaining the mint surprise. In a pinch, Andes mint candies will work, but it’s best to try to find a minty, chocolatey disk. If you’ve discovered a good, reliable source, let me know about it. I’m currently using the last of my Trader Joe’s UFO stash, and some Ghiradelli dark chocolate baking wafers.


Mini Green Pepper Cups

A fun way to preserve and enjoy the last of the bell pepper plants when the fruit is small but won’t have time to grow. Or you just have too many and want to preserve the bounty.

Many green bell peppers
 See what I’m up against? This is a typical bounty from my garden in a good year!

Continue reading “Mini Green Pepper Cups”

Instant Hot Cocoa Mix

It's super easy to blend your own hot cocoa mix. Keep this in a tightly sealed plastic container. Just give the container a couple of firm shakes to re-blend the dry ingredients before using. There is no salt added, making it a healthier choice than store-bought packaged mixes for those wishing to lower their sodium intake.