Thursday 31 December 2009


I have been looking at this novel all year- today i found it remaindered for£2! Here is the cover. It is set in 1752 and is about firework makers- two of my favourite things...
I have just started it and will let you know!
By the way Happy New Year to you and yours wherever you are...

Monday 28 December 2009

On the workbench /what I am reading...

Well Christmas has passed here in Tradgardland most equitably. The weather continues to present challenges and debate as to the safety and necessity of travel. My mother-in -law came for lunch yesterday and Jan was able to take her there and back without too much hassle. Today I hit Edinburgh to see my mother for her birthday and to take her out for part of the day.
We have eaten and drunk excellently-as befits a Major Feast and enjoyed ourselves well. I was given some inspiring books - "Vanished Armies" is a collection of eye witness paintings of uniforms from the lead up to the great War. Beautifully rendered they are just waiting to be replicated on the table top...
Two Osprey books (Herod and TYW) arrived too and I am sorely tempted to raise a small Herodian force for Basic Impetus . Add to that a calender featuring one of my favourite artists/designers Voysey and a beautiful Moleskine journal to record ideas and thoughts...I have done very well indeed.
On the workbench are a unit of 1938 militia belonging to the English Mistery and some Parthians not to mention the Lutelanders...
Have a great day whatever you do!

Thursday 24 December 2009

Hello, I am Zoe, The Duke of Tradgardland's eldest daughter. I will guide you through the preparations that have been happening in our house today.
There is still a large amout of snow lying and it it is very cold outside and weather predictions of snow showers throughout the night.

This year we bought a pot grown Christmas tree that we are going to bonsai and keep for many Christmas's to come. There is a selections of decorations that have been collected over the years. Including 1920/30's decorations from my Dad's side of the family and several that we have made ourselves.
Freya made the Snow man, above in technology as well as holly and a tree.

Today the house has been busy cleaning and preparing food. I made cranberry sauce this afternoon, a Delia Smith recipe that I have slightly changed.

Makes 4 portions

250g fresh Cranberries
1 and a half tablespoons of red wine/ port
Juice and zest of 1 orange
2 cloves
a small piece of cinnamon stick/ quarter of a teaspoon of ground cinnamon
35g caster sugar
Optional: 1 teaspoon of fresh root ginger/ half a teaspoon of ground ginger

Pulse the cranberries in a food processor or roughly chop.
Add to a sauce pan with the other ingredients and gently bring to the boil and simmer for 5-8 minutes with a lid on, until you get a thick consistency. Serve warm straight away or leave to cool, cover with cling film and store in the fridge until needed. It can be kept refrigerated for 2 weeks.

Merry Christmas to you and your families
From Zoe

The Parcel...

It was really cold last night- to say the least. However I am up,have good coffee to hand and will tell you now of my parcel....
My daughters spotted the postman trudging through the snow and I colected my parcel from him at a freezing front door...
It was indeed a parcel from Lutelande- a whole "Charge" regiment designed and cast for me by John. The figures are fantastic and will be used to raise the regiment refered to in last Sundays post. It will introduce a new character to the battlefield also . I will see if I can get some undercoating done today...

Wednesday 23 December 2009


It has been a super day. Further snow arrived overnight and we awoke to a decent (7 inch) amount of snow. Jan and I walked to get the turkey and other food from town and I picked up "Wargames Illustrated" afterwards. Good articles upon the 1st Crusade and the Very British Civil War of 1938.
Afterwards the girls spent much time outdoors enjoying the snow and made this super snowman.
All in all a good day. Later in the afternoon the postman arrived with a parcel from Lutelande. What more could one ask...


This Christmas I thought I would post some images from the postal history of the Duchy of Tradgardland. Today's offering is from the 1950's and depicts the little know shrine of St Wolfgang (built by the Bergmann Family as a chantry chapel in the 19th century) a few miles south of Tradgardstadt. Tradgardland still retains the right to produce stamps which are eagerly sought by collectors worldwide.

I am now on my hols- huzzah! School broke up yesterday with a lovely Carol service in church followed by an atmospheric train ride home thru the snow.
I have much planned hobbywise. Terry Gore medieval rules are coming after Christmas having been got by a friend for me at a good price- these will be used for 15th Century games especially. Some parthians arrived yesterday for a small force for Basic Impetus at my local club. I hope to start work on the 1938 vBCW militias I am slowly building and preparing.
Not to mention the parcel coming from America...
Have a great day one and all!More stamps tomorrow.

Sunday 13 December 2009


Today in the Duchy of Tradgardland it is Gaudete Sunday. The Duke of Tradgardland ,whilst hearing Mass, reflected upon the Rose colour of the vestments and candle upon the advent Wreath...
He thoughts turned to Rose -that traditional colour of the Duchy
and it's servants.His mind strayed to the new regiment being raised from amongst the Lutelanders for Tradgardland and its young colonel Paul of Stollen...
After Mass the court Chaplin inquired when Col John Liam Panettone ( a famous Irish- Italian soldier of fortune) would arrive to drill the newly raised troops and put them through their paces.As Paul of Stollen is but a babe in arms Panettone will assume command. The Duke was unsure of exactly when he arrived but made discrete enquires as to his whereabouts....
I am looking forward to receiving a extremely exciting parcel from the States very soon with some new figures to start upon over Christmas. More details soon!

Saturday 5 December 2009


It is early morning in the camp near Tradgardstadt. The Tradgardland Militia awake to find sweets placed in their boots (by order of the Duchess herself) to recall the gifts left by St Nicholas. Sleepy headed they arise to another day with spirts lifted amidst the winter cold...

A happy St Nicholas (6th Dec) to one and all from the Duke of Tradgardland and his Household!