Grayt News! August/September 2009
Compiled by Liiane al'Rhuidea
Welcome to the August/September edition of the Gray Ajah Newsletter! Announcements first... many congratulations to our newest Gray Aes Sedai, Badria Aidan, who was raised in RL at Europarty, and Lii Sedai , the new Gray Heart!
Congratulations to Niniel Sedai on the birth of baby girl Nyaneve!
Also, the next Gray Chat Weekend will be the weekend of September 11-13 in #graychat. It starts Friday afternoon and goes through Sunday. Everyone is welcome! Helpfully, Mariasha Sedai has put together a brief overview of how to access chat while the main site is still down:
When you go to Mibbit, click on "Start Chatting Now" Then where it says "IRC:" scroll down till you find "Sorcery [webirc]" "Nick:" is pretty self explanatory, and then for "Channel:" put "#graychat" and then hit "Go"
If you want to join another channel after you've gotten into #graychat, then do "/join #wheel" or whatever.
Gray Member of the Month
by Iteran Sedai
Well, it's that time already and this month I've hijacked "Member of the Month" from Cam because... well... she's the choice this time.
So ladies and gentlemen, with out further ado, I present to you the amazing, the incredible, the awesome, the wonderful: Camlyn al'Carr!!
a.k.a. Sarah Palmer, Palmer, Sez, Sare, woman
How long have you been a member for?
Two years, one month, one week and twenty-three days.
What do you like the most about being a member?
Getting the opportunity to meet like minded individuals that are notonly easy to talk to but can hold intelligent and interesting conversations.
Which forum is your favourite out of them all and why?
Gray Sitting room of course. It's my favourite because it's where I can be myself around my sisters and just enjoy the great company.
Have you been to a real life event?
Sadly no, I've not had the pleasure of attending a real life event. I'd love to make it to anni one year, but we shall see how I go.
Real life to you is?
Living day to day, supporting my mum, indulging the innocence of my nephew and laughter.
When real life occasionally eats you, as it does to us all, what keeps you coming back?
My sisters. Without them in my life I would feel empty and even when I do occasionally drop off the face of the planet, thinking of them and what they are doing always drags me back to the computer to catch up.
How are you Gray on the site and/or in real life?
I like pie. I'm definitely crazy so I guess that's how I'm "gray" in rl and here at the site too.
What are your hobbies aside from reading?
Aside from reading? Fire twirling/dancing, playing violent playstation games, watching movies, playing dice and card games and cooking.
What do you do for work or school in real life?
I'm unemployed at the moment and trying to work up the courage to apply to uni to study anthropology and archaeology. Normally you'd find me mixing drinks behind a bar.
And some words of wisdom for the readers?
Self praise is sometimes the only means of recommendation!
Pie of the Month
This month we did something different. Since a bunch of us got together for our first ever official Gray Party in Florida, we (and Kiti's son Austin) made a pie together. Austin's take on the pie-making will be in our next newsletter, but for now, here's our Pie of the Month!
First off, here's the filling for the pie:
6 granny smith apples lemon juice honey powdered ginger cinnamon extract
1. Peel/cut apples into same-sized slices. (Thinner slices won't have to bake as long as thicker slices.) As you cut them, toss them in a few tablespoons of lemon juice (just eye it) to keep them from browning.
2. After all the apples are cut up, add honey, powdered ginger, and cinnamon extract to taste and mix well. (The amounts I used were approximately: 1/4ish cup honey, 2-3 teaspoons powdered ginger, 1/4-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon extract.)
3. Now you haz apple pie filling for one 8-inch cake pan and one 9-inch pie pan! (Well...that's what we used! ) You should mix the apples up once in a while to make sure the ones at the bottom get too soggy and the ones at the top aren't tasty enough. Don't put the juice that's left into the pies because the crust will get wet on the bottom.
A recipe for pie crust was submitted by Mariasha Sedai, as well.
2 cup flour 3/4 cup shortening (Also seen it with 2/3 cup, but its whatever you like) 1 tsp salt
Mix up the salt and flour, then add the shortening. Add 5-6 TBSP of COLD water one at a time, mixing well between each. You want it wet enough to stick together, but still pretty dry. Make two balls, one a little bigger than the other, and stick them in the fridge for a bit. Roll the bigger ball into the bottom crust, the smaller into the top crust.
Usually you also want to put dabs of butter in after you put the filling in, but its not necessary if you forget. I ALWAYS forget. They still taste awesome.
I use a pastry blender to cut in the shortening and then the water. It's worth having one if you make pies (or other dough) a lot!
Let's just say I'm a pie maniac. I make lots of pies, fruit pies anyway. Apple, cherry, peach, blackberry...etc. And my pies are awesome. I will be bringing pies to FB. That is reason enough to come.
We were also lucky enough to have one of our Guests, Ennaraim Lamp, submit a pie recipe of her own!
Okay. Traditional Norwegian 'Sveler' (Sveler is plural. Svele is singular. So not "two svelers" but "two sveler". mkay?)
This is sorta like pancakes, but more like "something you eat while drinking coffee and chatting to your neighbour about the new grain harvester you just bought."
For two hungry people, or you and your two polite guests.
2 medium sized eggs
100 gram sugar
5 dl soured milk (also known as fermented milk, cultured milk, acidified milk,
Kefir, buttermilk and probably other names too. It's thick and tastes sour.)
2 tbs melted butter
250 g flour
1/2 tsp Sodium bicarbonate (also known as baking soda. Not the same as baking powder.)
1/2 tsp spoon Ammonium bicarbonate (Can be replaced with sodium bicarbonate if you can't get it, but Ammonium bicarbonate tastes different. Some people does not like the taste, and if you are one of them, feel free to replace it.)
sugar, jam, white or brown cheese on the top when it's ready for eating.
Take the eggs and the sugar, and whip it until it's what we here in Scandinavia call "Eggedosis". (Eggedosis is sorta like foam. The eggs-sugar-mixture gets light in colour, and it's about doubled to tripled in volume. You can tell it's ready by taking the whip, and writing "eee" (with old-fashioned loop-handwriting). If the first e is still there when the last one is finished, it's done.)
Mix the milk and the butter in a separate bowl, and after mixing, gently add it to the egg foam. DO NOT WHIP! The air in the egg foam will go away if you whip at this point. No air = no good.
Mix the dry ingredients together in a separate bowl, and add them gently to the egg foam. Make sure to keep the air of the egg foam while not getting lumps of flour. Now, it should be like thick pancake batter.
Heat a frying pan to "pancake-temperature". Take enough batter to make sveler 10-15 cm / 3-4-5 inches in diameter. (you can make them smaller if you want, but not much bigger.) Do not try to make it larger by pushing the batter with the spoon or tilting the pan.
After a while, it will rise. When it's "dry" on top, turn it over for a while to make it light brown on the other side. Repeat until there is not more batter.
Eat while it's still kinda warm.
by Magdalenna Sedai
Our dear Gray sister, Kitiarah, has been without internet for months. Months and months and months. We have missed her greatly! When it was revealed that Liiane had decided to visit Kiti at her house in Florida in August, I decided this was a party I couldn't miss. Velaris and Addelyn were going to drive in from their respective states, and Ajailyn even decided to fly in! So I figured...I could go to Fall Ball...or I could go to the first official Gray Party. I chose the Gray Party.
Lii went totally low-tech and found a bus that would take her from California all the way across the country to Florida. Her journey took days...days of ubiquitous body odor, fellow passengers talking loudly on their cell phones, and wrapping the straps of her bags around her legs to keep her things safe from thieving hands when she slept. Finally, she arrived at the bus station in Florida, just blocks from Kiti's house, on a Sunday, for some one-one-one Kiti time.
I flew into Tampa the following Thursday, and, after giddy hugging and much squeeing at the airport baggage claim with Kiti and Lii, experienced the nervewracking terror of driving John's (Kiti's roommate/boyfriend/whatever) massive, tempermental beast of a truck.
When we got back to Kiti's house, I met her menagerie of animals (two dogs, two cats, two rabbits, one prairie dog, a pond of koi, and a tank full of fish) and her family. We got down to the important business of making banana pancakes, recipe courtesy of Lii, which were fabulous! We stayed up far into the morning, talking and complaining and laughing and having a great time.
The following day, we picked Ajailyn up at the airport. It was the first time any of us had met her (Lii and Kiti and I had all met at 9th Anni in Washington state), and both Kiti and Liiane wore their shawls to the airport for identification purposes. I refused to wear my own shawl and pretended not to know Kiti or Lii when people curiously glanced our way.
We journeyed to a Walmart to stock up on the weekend's provisions: Premade pie crusts, cans of whipped cream, apples, mixers, soda, tonic water and lime for my gin and tonics...and yes, a wheelbarrow. In a section near the gardening center, we discovered small, plastic wheelbarrows made for children. John got creative and bought a can of gray spray paint. When we got back to the house, he spraypainted over the original neon green plastic, creating a gorgeously gray wheelbarrow. It was just what the weekend needed.
Later on in the day, Velaris and Addelyn, after getting horribly lost, finally rolled into the driveway. Once everyone had huggged and squeed and hugged some more, we piled into cars and drove a few blocks away to a hotel, where we would be staying for Friday and Saturday night. After unloading all our stuff in our room, a liquor store was hit up, Goldschlagger and other various liquors were bought, and we trundled back to Kiti's house for pizza and a good time chatting and poking fun at Kiti's sons (they were asking for it, really). We retired to our hotel room for the rest of the night and again stayed up into the wee hours of the morning.
Saturday was a very important day, as Addy experienced a new sensation: Her very first tattoo. After searching around the area, we found a pretty nice tattoo shop called The Brass Monkey. As most of us Grays who attended were already tattooed in one way or another, we were all concerned with finding sterile, good quality art, and we probably couldn't have done better than The Brass Monkey. All three artists' workbooks were full of really fantastic pieces, all with clean, straight lines and excellent coloring. Ajailyn bought some new earrings and stayed with Addy and me while the others headed back to the hotel to chill until the tattooing was done. I sat with Addy while she got tattooed and had the honor of having my hand crushed by hers when the needle got close to the bone. The tattoo came out beautifully, and Addy did an excellent job for her first time.
Saturday was also Epic Pie Day. Austin, Kiti's youngest son, was SO EXCITED about the Grays all piling into the kitchen and baking pies. Addy and I took on this great responsibility and taught the boy how to put a simple apple pie together. I was in charge of the filling, Addy was in charge of the crust. After making one pie, we instructed Austin to make his own pie all by himself. He did an excellent job with the dough, even making a face with the remaining pieces on top of the apple filling. He was so impatient to dig in that he kept taking the pies out of the oven too early, and I had to convince him several times that really, they did need to stay in just a little while longer. He was also super-excited about the pieing we were to do that evening. Little did he know that one of the pie shells we had bought was for him!
Everyone at the Gray Party had already been pied but Ajailyn, so she got first pieing honors. After Lii had thoroughly pied Aja, Kiti, second pie in hand, suddenly wheeled around and smacked Austin in the face with it. And there you have it! The very first Gray Ajah Mascot initiate! Austin was a good sport and had a fun time trying to lick all the whipped cream and graham cracker crust off himself.
The rest of Saturday evening consisted of eating delicious apple pie and then moving back to the hotel for the official Gray toast. We had bought gray (well, silver) metal condiment cups--about the same size of shotglasses, though squatter and wider--at Walmart the day before, and they are now an official Gray tradition, to be used at any future Goldschlagger toasts. We each toasted, and then we presented Velaris with her very own gavel, a symbol of her position as Head Clerk of the Gray Ajah. More fun and merry-making commenced, including a game of Never Have I Ever.
Ajailyn had a very early flight out of Tampa Sunday morning, which made her get up and leave the hotel around 4am. It was a sad, sleepy goodbye.
After checking out of the hotel, we went back to Kiti's house to hang out until the next party had to leave, Velaris and Addelyn. They drove off around 2pm, complete with the gray wheelbarrow, which was given into Addy's care. Shortly thereafter, it was time to drive me to the airport. Liiane was leaving Sunday evening as well, and was dropped off at the bus station around 7pm to begin her epic journey back to California.
It is always very hard to say goodbye to very good friends. We found that it doesn't have to be an official TV.net party for us to get massive postparty depression.
After the success of the party at Kiti's, it has been decided that a Gray Party must be in the works every 2 to 3 years. We will decide on a Gray's house, most likely an America-dwelling Gray who is a bit down on her luck in one way or another, and we will swoop in together for gigantic group hugs, pieings, and forgetting that the real world exists for a weekend. And it will rock.
Gray Original Artwork
by Ivien Tarkand, Gray Aspirant
Pain awoke him. Terrible pain. He felt like every part of his body was falling apart. Like his very own soul was being ripped out of his body. He wanted to scream. But he couldn't. Nor would there be anyone to hear him. He lived on a mountain all alone in his small but omfortable house. Agony. There was only agony. He couldn't think, couldn't breathe, couldn't........She! the memory crossed his mind. With that memory was only fear and need to escape. She wanted his soul. Soul that was so precious to her though he didn't know why. Pain. He wanted to scream. To scream in hope that pain will stop. Why is there so much pain? She couldn't find me. She couldn't! Sound. He heard the sound. Someone's voice. Hers voice! No!No!NOOOOOO! he managed to scream. It was her! She found him! How? How did she? The pain. The pain, she is responsible for it! She is taking his soul!
NOOOOO! He must not let her. He tried to fight. She must not take your soul. It's too precious. Too clean. voice told him. Memory. Must fight bac....Darkness. Emptiness. He saw her smile with his empty eyes and fell asleep in an endless dream.
To be continued.....
Wheel of Time Meme
And back by popular demand (because it is freakin awesome), the WoT meme thing!
That's about it for this month. See you in Gray Chat!
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