Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Well, I channeled my inner Maid Marian on my birthday and enjoyed an awesome experience, falconing with Dawn from the British School of Falconry, based at the Equinox Resort & Spa in Manchester, Vermont.

I encourage anyone headed up this way to check it out, particularly if you're a medievalist, or have ever harbored a fascination for these phenomenal creatures.

The British School of Falconry flies Harris Hawks, because of the birds' sociability, meaning that they are adaptable to being flown by strangers with only a 45-minute lesson under their belts. That's me with Hamish ... or is it his brother, Mycroft (yes, yes, we know Mycroft's brother should be named Sherlock!)

In any case, here are Mycroft and Hamish:

And many thanks to the falconer, Dawn, for the fabulous experience! And to my marvelous husband Scott for making it all possible and making all my fantasies come true!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

My new find! Pearson's Renaissance Shoppe -- Huzzah!

So! My darling, romantic husband is granting my birthday wish and getting me a falconing lesson at Manchester Vermont's famed Equinox Resort. http://www.equinoxresort.com/thingstodo/falconry/

I get a 45-minute lesson, followed by a "hawk walk" through the leafy vermillions, russets, and golds of the Green Mountains as they don their autumn hues.

But, speaking of donning ... what do I wear? I'll go falconing on my birthday, but my birthday suit is out of the question. My husband will of course bring a camera: this excursion must be saved for posterity.

The actress in me (not to mention the author of historical fiction and nonfiction) noodges, "Dress the part!" Something velvet, perhaps? Brocade? A hooded cloak? Flowing sleeves? Adorable soft leather booties? This time, Saks Fifth Avenue or Nordstroms is not going to have the perfect outfit to go falconing.

Enter Pearson's Renaissance Shoppe [http://www.pearsonsrenaissanceshoppe.com/], an online emporium to satisfy all your Robin and Marian, or Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, fantasies.

For guest appearances as the author of my Royal series, ROYAL AFFAIRS, NOTORIOUS ROYAL MARRIAGES, and the soon-to-be-released ROYAL PAINS, I occasionally wear a replica Renaissance gown that I bought at the Ren Faire in Tuxedo NY years ago. So it's not a stretch for me to scour the internet in search of items to augment my wardrobe.

Can I say that I wished I could buy just about all of the Medieval and Renaissance gowns Pearson's offers? http://www.pearsonsrenaissanceshoppe.com/renaissance-medieval-dresses.html
The falconer might look at me sideways if I arrived for my lesson in full regalia, but a girl can dream, can't she?

And if one doesn't want to do a full Eleanor of Aquitaine, Pearson's has all manner of jewelry (even crowns!) with which to accessorize.

Pearson's is so delighted that I fell in love with them that they are hosting a contest on this blog. One lucky winner, drawn at random, will win a lovely and delicate "Elven Princess" tiara. Perfect for channeling your inner Arwen!

Please provide your name and email contact, and feel free to post a comment as to where you might wear this fabulous accessory to indulge your own Medieval or Renaissance fantasy.

Item Description:

This fairy tale comb is made of rhinestones and pearls with a flower and leaf design. The Elven Leaf Comb is metal plated in sterling silver and has a comb in the back to stay on your head. It measures 1.5 inches tall and 4.5 inches wide.

The contest is open from September 24 to October 15 at midnight, EST. I will choose a winner on October 16.

Multiply your chances to win! If you become a follower of this blog, you'll get an additional 2 chances. If you tweet about the contest, you get one additional chance; and if you post something about this contest on Facebook, you'll earn one additional chance as well.

All images in this post are taken from Pearson's web site.