Heirs of the Magi News Flash!

***Heirs of the Magi News Flash!***

The annual Smashwords Summer-Winter sale is on for the month of July 2018! Magi Ascension and Magi Master are both on sale this month for 50% off, so click on the links to the left and get your copies at a great price while you can!

Happy summer - or winter - reading everyone!

Cassie's Journals have now come to an end with the start of the Magi Ascension storyline on June 15, 2018! Ethan and Ehlana will now be taking over the Heirs of the Magi daily updates as Cassie prepares to move on to college - and you can read all about her story by picking up a copy of Magi Ascension - Part One! Ethan's and Ehlana's roles in the Ascension of the Light is just beginning now too; so their journals will offer a different perspective on the events going on at home while Cassie is away at college!

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Cassie's Journal - June 29, 2014

This has been the hottest day of the year so far; and everyone working at the Inn got to have a reminder of just how hot that can be in the summer – even with air conditioning.  I know this because I was there and hanging out with Rebecca, Jenny, Michael, and everyone else during the buffet shift.

Before I get to that, though; let’s cover the rest of the news for the day.

Tai Chi for four this morning was awesome; and then Mom and Dad got a surprise invitation to go with me to the Stone’s house for their Sunday morning family breakfast.  That was an extra-special hour or so of family fun, and though Ethan and Ehlana had fun with Aiden, Naomi, and her family too; I still felt a little sad that they missed out on the great food and play time with Mom, Dad, and me.

We made up for that after church with a family barbeque lunch at our house, and while Dad had some work to get done; he waited to do that until after I went to help out at the Inn, and spent the rest of the afternoon playing with Mom, Ethan, Ehlana, and me.  By the way, did I mention it was fairly hot today?  Our afternoon play time included a lot of floating around and playing in the river with just a bit of park playground time and an ice cream cone run to the Emporium that was timed so that Michael could join us for that.  Rowen and Tim were doing their own family things today – and together – so we didn’t see them much except at church and for a couple of minutes while they were at the Inn for dinner with his family.

The hours of work at the Inn were pretty much all of the crazy-busy variety.  It wasn’t an ‘all-hands-on-deck’ day; but since nearly every campground in the area was full for the Fourth of July holiday week; the dining room was packed; and there wasn’t really an early-late buffet – just one continual one with tables being turned over as quickly as possible.  That also meant just keeping the food coming continually, and while buffets were a bit easier in that the menu is a specific number of dishes each week; it’s still a daunting amount of work to feed what ended up being more than five hundred customers.  There are probably lots of big city restaurants where five hundred would be a quiet night – not including fast food joints that live on volume; but that is a lot of customers for the Inn.

There was a need for extra heat-relief breaks today too, so while I’m not actually employed there or on the schedule; Miranda and Jacob were glad to have the extra hands to help out while making sure that nobody got over-heated or over-worked in the kitchen.  That was a bit easier for the servers who were able to stay cooler in the dining room; but it was a tough shift for everyone.  It didn’t even help to go outside on breaks – it was too hot to cool down.  Jumping in the river would have been nice; but not very comfortable when it came time to go back to work again in wet clothes.

Mom, Dad, Ethan, and Ehlana were having a quiet evening at home, and I was occasionally tempted to call it a night early once the last of the food had gone out to the dining room; but couldn’t bring myself to leaving everyone else there to finish the job and just walking away – even though nobody would have minded.  I have been running all day on just a couple of hours of sleep, though, so once we were finished at the Inn; the only thing I was interested in doing with Michael – or anyone else – was hopping in the river for a cool-down swim before going home to bed.

Michael and I did that at my house, and while we certainly weren’t alone in the river; we weren’t bothered by the gang over at his house either.  We swam for a half-hour; spent a little cuddle time on the dock before deciding that I was too tired and it was too hot out to do that; and then Michael went home for the night and I came up to my room.  There was a stop in the office on the way through, and Ethan and Ehlana were still up; but I only stayed for a round of hugs and kisses before continuing on up here.

Another bedtime shower was in order, though not mandated by my cat this time; so that took another fifteen minutes – including drying my hair.  I know, that’s impossible; but it isn’t when you’re a Magi Master and cheat with a little time-phasing.  I’ve only been in bed for about two ‘real-time’ minutes now, but continued the time-phase so that I could get my nightly computer checks and this update done.

I’m there now, and really need to crash and get a decent night of sleep, so that’s all for now; and, until next time…

…Live long and prosper, fellow Magi of the Light!

Cassie's Journal - June 28, 2014

Happy 14th Birthday, Joshua!

I’ll get started on the birthday party news in a minute, since that was where most of the news from today happened for me; but let’s start this update from the beginning.

Thank-you, weather forecasters, not only for not messing up last night and actually correctly predicting that we wouldn’t get rained on for our second sleepover; but also for messing up the forecast for the rest of the day.  Yes, we did get a couple of little thundershowers this afternoon at Joshua’s party, but not the all-afternoon, all-evening weather event you predicted.

See?  Sometimes Mother Nature surprises to the good side; and I’ll be the first to admit that I rarely complain about weather forecasts when they predict bad weather that doesn’t end up happening.  It’s much easier to adjust a plan to deal with a sudden outbreak of sunshine than it is to deal with unexpected storms.  It’s late, though, and we’ve had way too much fun today for me to get into another diatribe about one of the few jobs in the world you can work at with such lousy success rate where you can actually keep your job despite being wrong so much of the time.

So, first up this morning after our early morning campground wake-up call was Tai Chi by the river; followed by a camp tear-down while Mom and Dad cooked breakfast.  Michael, Tim, and Rowen all needed to leave after we ate and finished cleaning up, but Naomi and Aiden both stayed until they were picked up by a parent a bit later in the morning.  Dad and I were on outdoor chore duty for the rest of the morning; and while getting the lawn mowed yesterday helped out with that; it really only gave me more time to do other work – like weeding the gardens and planting some new flowers.  I worked until twelve-thirty; hopped into the river to cool off and get the worst of the dirt washed away; and then had lunch before getting ready for Joshua’s party.

I can’t say much about bigger and better birthday parties, since my parents have made mine fairly amazing since I moved here, but I do want to begin this birthday party report by mentioning that I really love just having a fun, family and friends play day kind of party like Joshua’s parents put on for him.  His party last year was special because Michael and I sort of were, but not quite yet officially ‘dating’; and this year’s edition was very different because we’re no longer in the social doghouse like we were last year.  We also had more time to party, since the party was on a Friday last year.

Joshua does live on a farm, though, and the work gets done first before the play time; so the party didn’t start until three – with some social time ahead of that starting at two-thirty while the set-up was still going on.  That meant that I both had time to get ready for the party and that the first round of thundershowers had come and gone by the time Michael, Tim, Rowen, and I got our ride out to the Parker farm.  We were the first non-family teens there, and that was a bit of déjà vu from last year too as we spent that time hanging out with Joshua and Sally; and helped out with a bit of the work – mostly setting up the games.

One other thing that didn’t change from last year was how popular Michael, Rowen, and I were with the younger kids – particularly with Joshua’s sister, Gabrielle.  This year, Rowen and I had her – and her best friend, Wendy Wilson – around us a lot.  They’re both ten going on eleven now, and while they haven’t ‘crossed over’; we’re apparently not too scary with how we act around our boyfriends compared to their older siblings and other teens.  There were a few jokes about that today, but I honestly don’t mind that any more than I’d ever have a problem with Ethan, Ehlana, and their friends wanting to hang out with us.  Rowen can’t say the same thing about Patrick, since there have been a lot of moments in the past when she’d have seriously considered offers to trade him in for a less-annoying model; but he is getting better – and Gabrielle and Wendy weren’t being annoying.  They just wanted to have fun; and maybe feel a little more grown up instead of being lumped in with the younger kids.

I’m sure that everyone can relate to that particular progression into the land of tween.

Getting back to the actual party news, the first thing I should mention is that Joshua’s – and Sally’s – families are huge high school football fans.  No surprise there with boys from both families on the team last season; but that did mean that Michael and Tim were bound to be talking football a lot today – and playing too.  All of the boys, and their fathers, are not particularly optimistic about the prospects for our team this season without Kyle and the other graduating seniors; but Joshua’s and Sally’s brothers are already talking about bonus summer training to get ready for the season anyway – news that definitely caught Tim’s interest.

Since we’re there anyway; let’s get the football part of the party news out of the way now.  The first scrimmage started shortly after the party did anyway; though that was just of first of several mini-matches.  Joshua’s brother, Ray, and Sally’s brothers, Alex and Mark, are all big guys – though Mark is only going on sixteen, and not quite as big as the two older guys quite yet.  Joshua’s brother has dreams of being the star quarterback on our school team; though he’s really been sort of an all-purpose player in his first year on the team.  I doubt that even he thinks that he has a real shot at beating Jeff Morris out for the job this coming season – if for no other reason than that Jeff does have the distinction of quarterbacking last year’s championship team.  Short of a season-ending injury; Jeff will be our quarterback again – and probably team captain.

Now that’ll be a job with big shoes to fill!  Hopefully there’s enough money in the budget to sew a ‘C’ on Jeff’s jersey too; since he’d need to wrap Kyle’s old one around himself two or three times to get it to fit.

I’m getting side-tracked; since the point I was going to make had more to do with how Michael, Tim, Joshua, and the other guys our age stacked up against the older guys.  Tim isn’t the only soon-to-be high school freshman who wants to play on the team this year, but if any of the guys in our class are going to be ready by August; Michael and Tim will be at the top of the list.  I can also tell you that after today, Tim doesn’t think that they’re quite there yet.

I predict that Michael will be doing extra football training all summer – though probably not until after the holiday weekend.

Rowen, Sally, Gretchen, and I played some football too when the second match of the afternoon was open to anyone – including the kids and girls.  I have no intention of trying out for the team and trying to break any feminist barriers in sports; but I did do pretty well this afternoon throwing the ball to Michael, Tim, and a few of the other guys on our team.  Rowen out-ran a few of the guys on the half-dozen plays she was our running back for; though she’d be the first to admit that her goal was to get out-of-bounds before getting caught – even if she had a couple of good runs to get there.

Hint to most football playing guys: pay more attention in math class.  Even in touch football, you’re going to lose if you don’t understand basic geometry and physics.

Okay, that’s enough football for me tonight.  Let’s get on with the rest of the party action.

In addition to the football, our afternoon activities included swimming in the pond; playing the other usual summertime yard games; and just having fun together whether playing or sitting around and talking with our friends.  I haven’t mentioned it in my journal before, mostly because it’s just one of those obvious things to everyone who lives in and around our little town; but Sally’s family was at the party because her mom, Cora, is best friends with Joshua’s mother, Mary-Ellen.  Their father’s are close friends too; though their friendship developed more through their wives – and from the shared farming and football interests since they weren’t in the same grade in school while their girls were.  I bring that up because I should do that more in these journals for Magi reading this far enough into the future that they’d have to look up family connections; and because I really like Sally’s and Joshua’s parents.  They don’t run in the same circles with my parents, or Michael’s; but their sense of family and priorities is exactly the same – which is why I feel right at home at either the Parker or Reynolds farms.

There was more déjà vu at dinnertime when Michael and I ended up sitting with Gabrielle and Wendy; but we also had four other friends with us this year – Gretchen, Brock, Lily, and Kris.  That made Michael and I the only ‘couple’ at our table, but it also wasn’t a coincidence that the other four teens were at our table in pairs.  There is definitely some potential romantic interest going on there – particularly with Gretchen and Brock.  He’s showing all of the signs of being very cautious about starting a new relationship after his break-up on the Washington trip with Nora; but that might be exactly why Gretchen is so interesting to him – because she’s absolutely nothing at all like Nora.

Hanging out with Gretchen sure earned Brock some attention from Nora – and from Gretchen’s last boyfriend too.  Elliott hadn’t dated anyone seriously since they broke up last March, but he seemed to have a problem with the fact that Gretchen was finally showing some interest in other guys after enjoying being single for three months.  I wouldn’t say that seeing Gretchen and Brock together pushed Nora and Elliott together; but they did seem to be talking to each other more often than they normally would after dinner tonight.

I could add something to that; but I’d hate to spoil the surprise.

While we are on the teen drama scene, though, Lily and Kris were having fun together today, but weren’t getting too cozy.  Lily did just break up with Marc, though, so even though that wasn’t a messy break-up or anything; she’s probably trying not to rock the social boat by making it look as though getting together with Kris had anything to do with ending things with Marc.  There is other teen dramas going on – we do have other single teens right now with all of the spring break-ups; but nothing imminent enough to report quite yet – or at least as far as anyone looking at the current events knows without having any future insight.

Honestly, I’m just glad that Michael and I will not have any starring roles in any of those upcoming high school teen dramas.  He’s mine – so hands off, girls! ;^)

The dinner menu was standard barbeque fare with a couple of cake options and copious quantities of ice cream for dessert.  Joshua had a lot of gifts to open, so that took a while; but cash and gift cards do seem to be getting much more popular this year as gifts for teens.  I don’t personally like doing that; but then I do have some advantages when it comes to things like that; so I’m pretty good at picking gifts for people.

I skipped mentioning the second little thundershower that rolled through here this afternoon, but only because those of us who were already wet from swimming didn’t care; and since the forecast had been for rain anyway; one of the barns had been set up for an indoor dinner if needed; so there was a big place for everyone to go to get out of the rain if they wanted to do that.  When it cleared up again after the rain, it only took a few minutes to move tables and chairs out of the barn.

The post-dinner clean-up was a group effort that teens were ‘encouraged’ to help out with; and then it was time to get back to the fun and games until the campfire started at dusk.  Rowen and I mostly played with Gabrielle, Wendy, and some of the other kids and teen girls while the boys had another football match; and then most of us went swimming to cool off again before settling in for the campfire.  Michael and I weren’t the only guitar players in the group tonight; but we were two of the favorites – especially when we added in a few duets that had some of the adults and teens dancing near the fire and everyone else sitting back and enjoying the show instead of singing along.

We weren’t officially having a dance; but Michael and I danced a couple of times too after most of the kids and adults went home at eleven o’clock and Ray put some canned music on for us to listen to instead of doing any more campfire songs.  The spooky stories got scarier once the young kids were gone, though; and we had a blast hanging out with our friends.  Michael, Tim, Rowen, and I also had a later curfew than last year – we got to stay at the party until it ended shortly after one o’clock.  In fact, we were even four of the last to leave – partly because Mom and Dad had gone out too and were designated drivers for their friends.  They did a run out to a pair of farms first; and then picked us up on the way home.  Babysitting services weren’t at our house tonight, and Ethan and Ehlana are staying at the Seager house overnight; so I had time to say goodnight to Michael in a lengthy, non-verbal sort of way while Mom and Dad did one more run to the pub for the rest of their friends – including Miranda and Jacob.  Michael went home with them after that, and I came up to my room to have a shower and go to bed.

That meant taking the extra time to dry my hair, but I seriously needed the shower before even thinking about getting into my bed.  How do I know that?  Many suggested that I sleep on the sofa if I didn’t; because she didn’t want to end up with any farm dirt in her beautiful fur coat.

The things we do for our cats!

With all of that, it was after three by the time I climbed into bed, and though I am tired; it’s taken a while to wind down.  I did a bit of family business work and my usual nightly computer checks before getting around to this update, and while I may not drop right off to sleep after I put my computer away for the night; I’d better try to get started on the nap I still have time for before we need to get up for Tai Chi and whatever Sunday adventures we have ahead of us.  We don’t have anything specifically planned, but that’s actually okay with me – I could use a rest-up day right about now before getting into all of the fun we’re going to have heading into the holiday weekend.

Okay, I obviously have nothing to add to this update now; so, until next time…

…Live long and prosper, fellow Magi of the Light!

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Cassie's Journal - June 27, 2014

First up, I’d like to have a little talk with weather forecasters everywhere.

I’m not mad or anything, and the rain didn’t seriously mess up our camping adventure last night, but people do make these decisions with the information at hand; and when you forecast a low chance of rain – particularly when we’re only talking about hours into the future – we don’t expect to get rained on.  There were no tent floods, we didn’t need to carrying everything indoors in the middle of a deluge, and the river didn’t overflow its banks and sweep us downriver and over the falls in our sleep; but some of us didn’t get much sleep after staying up late and then getting to listen to the pitter-patter of rain on the tents and the occasional rumble of thunder here and there.

That little commentary is mostly because I really hope you do better with your forecast again because some of us are giving you another chance tonight; so don’t mess it up – we need to get some sleep!

Before I get to the news from today; let’s back up and do a better job with the action from Thursday.  The day started out great with Tai Chi; Michael stayed for breakfast; and then pretty much everyone else except me was off and running for the morning.  Dad went to the office; Mom and Violet went to the lab and took Ethan and Ehlana with them; and Michael, Rowen, and Tim were all busy for all or most of the morning.  Alicia started out her day with the usual twin-related chores while they were with Mom anyway, so I did some work around the house too while she was there; but then I worked in the office after she went over to the lab too; doing some family business jobs while waiting for Rowen to be set free.

Mom brought a small gang home from the lab for lunch; Rowen and I joined her for that; and then we spent the afternoon playing with Michael and Tim – or at least with both of them when Michael was on his afternoon break.  We didn’t have the twins with us for that; and enjoyed the teen time and more extreme biking on the trails in the woods at the park.  We haven’t gotten to do that nearly as much this summer as last year so far; but then we’re also not doing a repeat of our trick riding act in the parade this year either so we don’t have as much motivation to do that.

Tim, Rowen, and I took care of most of the camp set-up after Michael went back to the Inn, but he headed home for dinner while Rowen stayed to have dinner with me before we went to baseball practice.  The only thing I want to mention from that action at the park is that Jenny seemed to be feeling a bit left out tonight with yet another camping adventure that she didn’t want to join us for while she’s single and the rest of the teens were paired up.  Maybe it’s time for a girls’ night camping or sleepover adventure.  I’ll talk to Rowen and Rebecca about that after the holiday weekend.  Maybe we’ll do that one night while Dawn’s here for her holiday with us.

Moving along, the baseball practice went good, and though we aren’t going to have a practice next Thursday because the Fourth of July is on Friday and we’re all too busy with other obligations; I think we’re ready for our holiday weekend game.  I don’t know if Lucas’ father is that thrilled with these camping nights when it means that Lucas gets a late start on his morning chores; but Claire is definitely for them; so we aren’t going to have any problems getting Lucas and Emma approved for these Thursday night camping adventures.  I’m thinking about making them a weekly event this summer – next week excluded due to the holiday.

So the camping adventure began after baseball practice ended.  Michael and I collected Jessica, Ryan, and Sophia on our way home; Patrick, Scott, and Lindsay were already there by then and had another tent set up; and Mom and Dad happily handed over custody of Ethan, Ehlana. Naomi, and Aiden to us for the rest of the night.

We went for a swim; played in the back yard; and had a little campfire before putting the younger kids to bed in the tents.  The teen time after that was mostly fun with some interruptions from Patrick and Scott now and then – though their goofiness was mostly geared toward impressing the older guys or annoying Emma, Jessica, and Lindsay.  The midnight swim we hopped into the river for after I wrote my micro-update last night was a blast of quiet fun; and then I wrapped up my night with some river-side cuddle time with Michael before we eventually split up and went to bed in our respective tents.

The rain started not all that long after that, and lasted for a couple of hours off and on; so I only had a little nap before that and then maybe an hour and a half after before it was time to get up for Tai Chi.  That was a fun start to the morning; and then it was all crazy-busy for a while as we fed a gang of kids and teens; Violet and Dillon helped out with some transportation out to the Norton farm or other points of interest – like KidZone; and we cleaned up about half of the campground.

Oh, did I mention that Violet and Dillon were doing a sleepover last night while there weren’t any kids in the house?  I’m fairly sure that they’re going to like Thursday night camping adventures as much as we do! ;^)

Michael, Rowen, and Tim stayed to help out with the work after breakfast, but then they all moved on to other chores or work for the rest of the morning.  While they were busy; I did some chores around the house to get a head start on the work for Saturday – including mowing the lawn.  Michael was at the Inn today for lunch and dinner because he’s getting the afternoon and evening off tomorrow for Joshua’s birthday party; but we still had some afternoon play time with Rowen and Tim during his break and he was back with me again in time for our little camping campfire.

He did miss out on dinner and a cooking night at Uncle Adam and Aunt Leanne’s house, but that actually worked out pretty well for me because it gave me more time to spend with my aunts, uncles, and cousins that I might have had if we’d been able to do that together – especially since Rowen and Tim probably would have been with us too if Michael had been on his usual Friday night off.

I especially liked getting to spend some time with Christina and Josiah – and Violet and Dillon.  There’s never enough time for everyone, though; and I still haven’t gotten to spend as much time with Aunt Grace, Uncle Mark, Aunt Deborah, and Uncle Nick as I’d like to do lately.  That seemed especially weird tonight with Uncle Nick as I realized that I’d gone from seeing him practically every day until school was out for the summer to hardly at all.  Part of that was because he was still at school with the other teachers last week; but it still felt strange tonight while actually paying attention to that – and admit that I hadn’t really thought about it at all since being set free from school for the summer.

Apparently Magi Masters are not immune to getting caught up in the normal, self-centered life of a teen, but don’t tell anyone – it might ruin our reps! (That’s a joke – I don’t actually care about my reputation at all the way some teens do.)

The dinner and cooking night was mostly to help Uncle Adam, Aunt Leanne, Uncle Nick, and Aunt Deborah with getting meals ready for the holiday weekend incoming family.  It’s a ‘home’ year for them; but an ‘away’ weekend for the Proctor-Rice clan.  Hanging out together tonight was also because we won’t be doing that with Uncle Mark, Aunt Grace, Violet, or Dillon next weekend.  They’ll all be away for the holiday weekend too – either in Granite Park or Woodvale.  I’m glad that we got to hang out together – even though I didn’t get to spend a lot of time actually talking with my aunts and uncles while we were all busy.

While I’m thinking about them; I’m way overdue for a family pregnancy update.  Aunt Grace and Aunt Deborah are both through their first trimester now; and their first and second pregnancies are both going great.  Being pregnant during the hot summer months might not be something that a lot of women would prefer for timing, but going through that during the second trimester might actually be the best time – you’re not hot and barfy like you’d be in the first trimester; and not so big and uncomfortable all of the time like you would be in the third trimester.  The only news there that really matters, though, is that my favorite expecting moms and their babies are doing fine; and they’re very happy right now.

The real fun for them – and some of us – is just around the corner; but I’ll have more on that later this summer.

My cooking play time ended when Michael was finished at the Inn and he came over to meet up with me – and with Rowen and Tim – so that we could move on to our second camping night in a row.  We only have Ethan, Ehlana, Naomi, and Aiden with us tonight, and while we had time for a swim and some campfire fun with them; they were all sleeping in our tents before eleven o’clock.  Michael, Rowen, Tim, and I stayed up and around our little fire until after midnight; followed that up with another swim; and then some riverside chat and cuddle time.

Rowen and I are in our tent with Ehlana and Naomi now, but we’re still winding down while I’m doing this – and the rest of my usual nightly computing that’s already done now – and she’s been checking out YouTube teen campfire videos.  It is late, and we do have a major birthday party to go to tomorrow afternoon and evening; so we should probably wrap this up and get to sleep.  It’s been another really great day, and while our little family and friends adventures might seem boring to a lot of teens; it seems to me as though every day of our summer holidays so far has been amazing and exactly the best-ever-so-far kind of fun I’d hoped that we’d have.

With Joshua’s party tomorrow; that trend should be continuing; and I am really going to enjoy sharing all of that fun with Michael and our friends.  That’s it for tonight, though; so, until next time…

…Live long and prosper, fellow Magi of the Light!