Multi-Purpose weekend

The first week of May we all gathered in Edisot/Charleston to celebrate/attend Lenore's birthday, Lynda's Dragon Boat Festival, Graeme's starring role in Hello Dolly and Mother's Day. Friday we hung out on the beach. Lyla almost went in the water but saw a jelly fish and that was that. It was T's shepard's pie for dinner which was delicious.

Saturday we went into Charleston to check out the farmers/craft Market at Marion Square and attend the Dragon Boat Festival. It was hot but at the river the breeze made it bearable. We ate chili at the George (my parent's in-town condo) and then went to see Graeme starring as Cornelius in Hello Dolly. Very enjoyable. Check out the videos on youtube.

Sunday we made potato pancakes for all the mothers - some with and without onions, some cooked in bacon grease, some in vegetable oil - all delicious. Sunday dinner was Lenore's birthday celebration with steak and poppy seed cake.

Check out the pics.

Lenore thinking of her wish

Evil little brother

We have a new member of our computer family. Joe bought a mini laptop from, you guessed it, Dell. No, for realsies, a Dell. He did however tear out the evil insides, replaced them with the Mac operating system and stuck an Apple sticker over the Dell emblem. It works really well and now we can video chat from opposite ends of the couch.

big and little laptop openbig and little laptop closed

Early Spring

The cherry blossoms were very nice this year.I did not go down to the tourist-heavy tidal basin but did enjoy the cherry trees and other spring plants in our neighborhood. I was so inspired I got my balcony plants in earlier than ever before.

grape hyacinth forsythia

crocus cherry

cherry blossom with talisman faucet
balcony leftbalcony right

Shrimp fries!

Actually I only ate one shrimp fry (or shrimp chip as the company that makes them seems to want to call them - they look like fries) but was thrilled that they were on the table. Austin, William, Lyla Tracy and I headed to Arlington to have dinner with Ellen and Sam. Ellen and Austin did all the cooking and Sam played bartender.

Ellen and Sam's friend Arthur joined us as well. And it was during dinner when Lyla and I were explaining to Sam about how our mother was Latvian and our father was Irish that Arthur stood up and quietly walked around the table to where Lyla and I were sitting, stood between us and asked if we said Latvian. After we turned, gave him a puzzled look and said "yes" he kissed us both on the cheek and said "Sveiks". As you can imagine we were amazed that someone knew the official Latvian greeting. It turns out Arthur used to date a Latvian girl. Alas it did not work out but he gained a clear understanding of what is important to Latvians. It also turns out that Sam and Arthur know another Latvian that swims at their pool.

After dinner we stood around and re-arranged T-shirts on the floor to help Tracy plan his Grateful Dead quilt that Austin is making. We also watched Apolo Ohno win a another medal. Ellen and Sam have a big rottweiler named Pepper who was very friendly and joined in the fun while we were there but started growling when we left. This was quite odd. I can only think that as a rescued dog he has abandonment issues, even with relative strangers.

But it was another wonderful event with Sam and Ellen.

shrimp chips
Shrimp fries!

ellen knittingwilliam getting contact photo
Ellen knitting and William taking a photo for his contacts list

sam serving winelyla and tracy with flowers
Sam serving a nice bottle of wine. Lyla and Tracy with tulips.

austin's veggieslyla's chopsticks
Austin's veggie dish. Lyla points her chopsticks at Arthur.

planning a quiltpepper the dog
Planning Tracy's Grateful Dead T-Shirt quilt. Pepper the friendly rottweiler with a pal

Ellen's frog collection.

Hearts and Action Figures

For Valentine's Day I made Joe a little heart pillow out of felt leftover from the Christmas Contest. Joe gave me a Shah Rukh Khan action figure (with two outfits!). He will join Jack Bauer in our ever increasing collection (we now have two) of action figures.

Gifts from the heart:

felt heart SRK action figure

The heart is about 4.5 inches tall. SRK is about 12 inches tall.

Three more

I took these Sunday over at the nearby Howard Law School.




Taking it to the Streets

Spent most of the morning puttering around the apartment shredding old bills, organizing my beads and marveling at the falling snow. We ventured out around 2:00 to get a bite to eat and then take a walk. Most sidewalks were not shovelled and since there were not too many cars most everyone was walking in the streets. We started our walk on plowed sidewalk but eventually the plowed area stopped and then the snow was knee deep. As we re-crossed Connecticut Ave to head home a convoy of plows went by led by police directing people over a loud speaker to get off the street.

street scene little girl
Street walkers and a cute girl eating her lunch

hidden benchesbirch and evergreens
Hidden park benches and a birch tree among the evergreens

Joe's pictures are below
blow coat with skissnow boy
An inexperienced cross-country skier in a crazy blue coat and a little boy having fun

laura knee deep in yellow coatdump truck
An inexperienced cross country skier (luckily I wasn't trying) in a yellow coat and a snow plow with an emblem - a mouse next to the words "Big Papa".

Snow Season

It's been a snowy winter. So far it has been manageable, which means I have not had to drive in it. This past week it snowed a heavy wet snow overnight and the next morning the sun came up and created a wonderful mist in the trees behind our building. It looked pretty cool. As I write this the snow is falling or rather whipping around with high winds. Over 20 inches have been predicted. You'll probably see more pictures soon.


Burning Christmas trees

I drove to Todd on Martin Luther King Memorial weekend to spend time with Susan and Susan and David and Lane and Andrea and Hunter in the mountains of NC. Lane drove with me which was great since I get sleepy after about 30 minutes of driving. It did not snow but there was plenty of snow on the ground. There was a fair amount of mist which was cold and raw but enjoyable as well. Susan's living room stove keeps her place quite cozy. The highlight of the weekend was the bonfire we made that took a long time to get going but we found that if you throw enough stuff on it (including gasoline) you can not only get it going but it will burn in the pouring rain. We also enjoyed two special cocktails from David's travelling bar, homemade pancakes and Thai food at a restaurant down the mountain in Boone.

There are more pictures here.




Christmas Contest 2009

Congratulations to first place winner Graeme Rock! Check it out.