While chatting with a long distance friend and making plans for her visit this week she mentioned McLeod House in a near by town. I’ve googled it and it is just up our alley! Built in 1898 it is suitable for our Victorian attire and with an Edwardian war hero associated with it, it could be a good place for our Edwardian outfits (if and when we get them together!)
The event was officially launched with a flag raising, which I have a nice little video of but WordPress insists on playing it upside down…I wont torment you with that.
The event was then blessed in traditional aboriginal fashion. The video is fairly long (but up side up). I found the music very moving! Much more powerful in person than on video.
The event being celebrated featured the local aboriginal tribes and the Scottish settlers so some Scottish music was shared as well. I find the pipes moving as well! But that is just my Scottish blood speaking! This video has the still sideways but it in fact plays upside up! Sigh!
The Seven Oaks House Museum hosted an event in horror of the first treaty signed in Manitoba. (July 18, 1817). Members of the Manitoba Living History group hosted a reenactment. My groups member, Lottie, is also a member of MLH and she was there in action! Front and back view of her ensemble.
There were some displays with my favorites being the spinning display…
…and the gun and military jackets. This jacket is a replica of the one that would have been worn by Capt. Miles Macdonell, first governor of the Red River Settlement.
I loved the animal displays as well! Who doesn’t!
There was a camp display.
There were some stunning representations of clothing and of key players of the time in the event.
The event featured a parade with a flag raising and an offering from the aboriginal members of the event. I hope to get the videos playing upside up in my next post.
Then there was a reenactment of the treaty signing and gift exchange.
My understanding of this treaty was the original signers did a fairly good job of honoring it…but the next generation did not. And Canada is still struggling to reconcile and start clearing up the mess that was made of broken promise after broken promise.
As a blog filler I thought I’d share some of the scenic shots I took while on our last photo shoot. I think my phone takes pretty good pictures … for a phone. My third favorite:
And most favorite:
I sometimes like to play the computer game Sims. When the kids were little, it was bordering on an obsession. In fact one of the reasons we now have 5 computers in a 4 person house is everyone got tired of me hogging the one and only computer to play Sims.
Things are a bit different now. I’m not what you’d call an aficionado. I haven’t run out and bought the latest version. I still play Sims 3. And these days, with Netflix in my life I go 6 months or more without playing and then I have a couple of weeks where I take it up again.
I’ve taken it up again. I should be in the basement finishing my Edwardian shirtwaist but instead I am playing Sims. But I simply must share this nerdy thing I did. I built a Sims version of Dalnavert House Museum. (Sorry for the wonky phone photos of a computer screen. I couldn’t convince my computer to print screen properly).
Okay, it isn’t exact. I’m a bit limited by items available in my game. Perhaps with a few more expansion packs I can get that roof right.
After I finished the house I made a “mini me”. Then I used a cheat and made myself rich and then I bought the house and moved it! Isn’t that great! I can live “the dream” at least in the Sims world. Which is why I like Sims. Here is a world I actually do control.
Here is “mini me” in the dining room having cereal.
Here I am walking around the study. And then reading a book at Hugh John’s desk!
And now I’m in the lady’s sun room.
Some of the floor plan in the servants area is off. I obviously didn’t have an actual floor plan to work with but, hey, it’s just the servants wing after all.
Shirley and I launched our costuming season last night by attending a musical evening at our/my favorite house museum, Dalnavert House.
The featured band was Simpson’s Folly.
Shirley and I dressed up in some 1890’s ensembles in honor of the house’s age.
I don’t know why my hair looks so “slept in” in that photo! Isn’t the cane Shirley is carrying fabulous! She says the vendor she bought hers from has an elephant one! I think I need that!
Simpson’s folly had a quiz question about a young private that came to Manitoba in the 1870’s to deal with the upstart Riel. He later became a premier in Manitoba…who was it? Shirley thought it was the builder of Dalnavert House, Hugh John McDonald. She was too shy to answer the quiz in case she was wrong.
I was fairly sure she wasn’t. I remembered hearing that he had been involved with the fight against Riel but couldn’t remember much about his political past. I took a chance that Shirley had remembered that part correctly and answered for her. (When it comes to talking I don’t have much fear of looking the fool. I think I actually need a bit more fear.)
We won a CD from the band! Nice launch to our costuming season!
I want to wish you all a fabulous Holiday! I’m enjoying what works out to be a 4 day weekend and I intend to spend most of it in my PJ’s! Woot Woot!
I thought you might enjoy some inspiration that I got from the local house museum Dalnavert.
The Origin of the Christmas Tree by Heather Mousseau
In 1841 Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, husband of Queen Victoria, imported a small Christmas tree from his homeland and the fashion quickly caught on. Called German trees at first, they generally stood about 4 feet high and were placed on a table as we have done in the study at Dalnavert. They were decorated with small presents, sugared fruit or candy as we do in the cornucopias on our parlour tree, little toys, and other tiny items. Children might string garlands of cranberries or popped corn to trim their tree. They were lit by small wax tapers and must have looked quite lovely when all lit up.
As often happens, after being overwhelmed by the prep for an event, I find inspiration to add to my stress level for next time! The above paragraph inspired me to have a bit of Victorian Christmas in my home. This would mean having a 3rd tree! I have my big tree with ornaments purchased or given over the years…many with sentimental meaning behind them.
Then I have a little tree of elephant ornaments because I love elephants.
This is the latest acquisition.
Now I want a Victorian Tree.
To have this Victorian tree, I will need to find a 4 foot artificial tree. (1 step away from authentic but no need to kill a tree every year). I will scan the shelves this Boxing Day and see if the stores can produce one for a decent price.
The tree needs to be on a table, which I have. The trouble is, that table already has decorations on it.
These decorations will have to find a new home next year or be pitched into the donation bin. Then I may have to move the table because the 4 foot tree might be a bit much on a 2 foot table in the middle of the room.
The small presents would be easy enough to do…make some ornaments with small doors in them to put small things in. I think I’ve seen a blog that has instructions for Victorian ornaments like that. The candied fruit…well I could learn to do that but likely I’ll take another step away from authenticity and by the fake ones.
I could give the cranberry popcorn chain thing a try again. I did it once…and hung it up outside for the birds and squirrels. (Don’t tell the hubby I feed the squirrels. He hates them.) The waxed tapers seems a bit like a fire hazard so I will take another step away from authenticity and see if I can find the battery operated kind and then come up with a way to attach them. Perhaps glue some alligator clips on them…very authentic!
Then I will put the gifts for my costuming chums under it. All wrapped in brown paper or tissue paper and tied with ribbon or lace.
Now the pragmatic part of me is saying, “yes, that seems like fun but, you didn’t put out all of the decorations this year (or last) because you didn’t feel like it. What makes you think you’ll want to put out more next year? And where will you put it hmmm? And if you can’t find places for it all without resorting to little used rooms and step ladders…”
“…what makes you think there will be room for it all when you DOWNSIZE in a year or two? And the idea of starting to collect those little Victorian buildings and creating a town is stupid.”
Oh shut up pragmatic side. You are spoiling my muse.