Monday, September 29, 2008

Vermillion County Civil War Days

Back from a lovely weekend! It is, on reflection, a bit of a let-down in some ways to come back to "real life" after an event. There is the unpacking, the inevitable things that need mending or fixing, the laundry, the cleaning of other supplies. On the other hand, it is incredibly precious to have the memories, the talking-over of the weekend with a Beloved Husband, the friendships that were formed or strengthened, the good feeling of satisfaction and comfort in knowing there are other like-minded folks out there who hold dear the same values and the same interests and the same way of life.

We were blessed with wonderful weather. The nights were not terribly cold and the days pleasantly warm. The boys only wore their wool gowns for a few hours Sunday morning before having to be changed into their summer dresses!
Saturday greeted us with awakening very early to head over to the event, since David was forced to remake our new rope bed Friday afternoon/evening due to some warping issues with the lumber we intially used. Rather than set up very late at night we decided to go to the event Saturday morning. It was a compromise; we didn't want to miss the first evening there but by staying home we were able to relax a little and watch the debate between Sen. McCain/That Rat Obama and awoke refreshed for the weekend.

Our camping location was right next to a beautiful geometrically laid out raised herb garden. The smells that wafted into our tent were absolutely delightful! There were all the common herbs as well as flowers and tomatos and David brought over a handful of what he said were hops, to show me. He said they give flavor to some sort of alcoholic beverage. They had a very strong scent indeed!
Little David enjoyed walking the intersecting pathways and it was pleasant to have him so interested in an area so close to our camp. Katie, the little granddaughter of our hospital steward, played with the babies and followed little David where'ere he went.
We brought a wood and canvas frame cot for the babies to sleep on this weekend. It was an experiment for us. I was not sure if they would do well with an open bed since they are accustomed to sleeping in their cribs, or on the ground in a puppy pile at events but they did very well with the cot and I was glad to have them up off of the ground. Judah slept at one end and David at the other, with their feet in the middle. David enjoyed the cot since it was so narrow and snug and took advantage of that for a nap Saturday afternoon.
Judah and I, while David napped, were invited to participate in the fashion show, held in a gorgeous wood gazebo. We had lemonade and cookies and waited in the cool shade with the other ladies until we were called up. Juhah flirted shamelessly with all the ladies and had his picture taken for the local newspaper. The next day we got a copy and his picture was on the front page, along with the inner location of the article! His picture was also the largest photo in the article. :) This time, the news reporter did NOT botch up what I told her and I was altogether very satisfied with how the article was written. Much better than last year at Princeton. In the afternoon I spent a great deal of time at the farmhouse that was a street over from our medical camp. There was a pretty arbor covered in shady vines that the boys played beneath and a large yard fenced in where they could run and play without me having to worry about them running off. It was nice to sit on the porch and talk to the passer-bys as I felt it was a more fitting location for me than the medical encampment. I was able to pretend I was the mistress of the home with my children and the army was moving through my town, the battle taking place a few fields away. It is nice when events have atual historical buildings so such a thing is an option to portray. Katie gave little David a green balloon, which he Dearly Loved.
The photographer was not at the event so we asked a reenacting gentleman to take a picture of us as a family. It is not nearly what we wanted or had in mind but at least it is all of us together! :) We think the photographer will be at our final event in three more weeks since it is close to his actual location and we plan on getting our photo done there. (and yes, I do need to make a longer collar for my blue dress, and no, I don't plan on wearing this one for the pic! Yikes!) :) It does work VERY well though for keeping signs of Baby Smudge from disfiguring my gown since the dark colors are so very practical.
On Sunday morning we awoke early. While David helped open the church building I took the boys for a walk before services started. My dad let me use this little wagon to pull the boys in. It is not period correct and we have to paint over the "radio flyer" words but it was hugely helpful to me and a better option than our double stroller. The boys enjoyed riding in it as well! Hopefully over the winter we can get a period correct wagon made for the boys. It is almost necessary to have, especially since I will have the new baby next season. Just prior to services, David had the privilege of ringing the bell to call the worshipers together. He rang it twelve times, once for each disciple. (although on reflection it could also have been once for each tribe of Israel?) The service was quiet, sober, yet full of joy and gladness. David and I both felt that this was the first time in a very long while that we have actually worshipped, as a body with other believers, in a church setting. Since leaving our old church (for many different reasons) earlier this year and off-and-on atttending a different nearby church we have not felt so settled nor so happy to be in a place. The preacher gave out the gospel fully and with no restraint. To hear again of the love our Lord has for us was humbling and convicting.

After the service the reenactors mingled in the churchyard. David spoke with the President and the President's "staff".
There was not much on the schedule for the afternoon but David and Maj. Ron, the surgeon, planned a small scenario for a pre-battle demonstration. David gathered up a few willing victims and worked on his wounds. Meanwhile, I examined the medical instruments, papers and medicines laid out.
At last the crowd had gathered and before them three men had puss cleaned from their wounds. (speaking of which, the "puss" used is really tapioca pudding. Judah saw his daddy using the puddy to make a wound and was unhappy because he could not eat it!) We headed up to the battle after that but I soon had to take the boys to a more shady location. We spent a while in the pleasant tranquility of the school yard and David explored the edge of the woods while Judah amused himself with the crunchy leaves that had fallen. A functional outhouse was in the schoolyard and was much preferable to the porta-potties since not many people thought to use them.
And thus - we packed up in the afternoon and in the glory of the setting sun came home again.




  1. What a lovely weekend. I love your pictures, and your boys are so beautiful. Have a wonderful week dear friend. :-)

    Love Lauren

  2. It looks like it was such a fun time!!!
    Aww little Judah on the front page of the paper??? How cute!
    That church service sounds like it was amazing! The boys looked like they were enjoying that ride in the wagon. :) How precious.

    Awesome pictures, too! :)

  3. Hi there, Sarah. My name is Jane Ellen and I have really enjoyed visiting your blog.

    Thanks for writing in such a God-glorifying manner. I sincerely hope that God will lead you to a church body that will welcome you with open arms. Looking forward to more posts!

    With love,
    Jane Ellen

  4. I love how your blue dress turned out! It looks like you had a wonderful time! The church experience sounds fantastic, I would love to attend a period service sometime!

  5. I loved reading about your weekend- isn't it wonderful to get away to the peace and quiet? :) It makes me want to give up electricity sometimes!

    But I'm sure I'd miss hot showers!


Thank you for your lovely thoughts!