littlereview: (jewitch)
My Yoko Ono Moment )

We had to get up insanely early to drive Daniel practically to Dulles for work -- the reason he's in town this week -- then came home and worked from here while catching up on Downton Abbey (oh shut up Mary) and Billions (oh shut up pretty much every character on the show) while eating lunch. When Daniel was finally finished, we picked him up and went to the Minerva in Herndon, where I ate way too much wonderful Indian food.

We watched this week's X-Files, which I loved -- reminded me of my very favorite episodes from the first time around, a monster-of-the-week story with major character issues, a bit of arc story, and serious shippiness. We also watched some more first season Bones, which I wish could be less gruesome but I love the characters. Here are some of the daffodils we saw in Longwood Gardens' conservatory a few weekends back:

Early Spring Yellows )
littlereview: (little review)
Tackle Football )

I have had a nice Super Bowl Sunday even though I was rooting for the Panthers, who (spoilers -- hahaha, like you don't know) did not win and didn't play as well as I had hoped, since usually what I want from the Super Bowl unless I absolutely love one team or absolutely hate another is a really good game. We had kind of a slow start because Daniel slept late, but eventually we had French toast and eggs, then we went out to Kohl's because he needed pants and shoes and apparently has had no time to track them down in Seattle. I got the fuzziest jacket in the world for under $8 and Terps sweatshirt for under $15.

In the late afternoon after the Kitten and Puppy Bowls, we picked up my parents and went over to the home ofthe Bergers, with whom we always watch the Super Bowl along with 50-75 other people. There's always lots of food, drink, friends and their kids, so although I'm usually a bit distracted during the first half and its commercials talking to people, it's really fun even if whoever I'm rooting for isn't winning, plus there's always lots of chocolate to console me. Most people stay through the halftime show, which got a lot better this year when Bruno Mars showed up, though I think Lady Gaga provided the top entertainment value!

Super Bowl 50 )
littlereview: (photos)
Monadnock in Early Spring )

Daniel is home! He flew from Seattle to Detroit before arriving at Dulles, so we didn't even leave the house to get him till nearly 9:30, and now he is catching up on work he missed while traveling and the cats are fascinated by how he and everything he brought smells.

Earlier in the day we did less exciting things like laundry, cleaning up, shopping and a UPS drop-off. But then we went to Great Falls to see the cresting Potomac River, where we also got to see rainbows in the high spray, vultures above the high water, and a fishing heron:

By the River )
littlereview: magical healing colours of glastonbury mandala by fiona stolze (trek)
Snowball )

I have had what I can only describe as a really insane night being trolled online, of the sort I haven't had since the days of Usenet, so forgive me for being brief and incoherent. It was not an eventful day in the real world. I posted a review of Voyager's "Basics, Part Two", went to the food store and CVS to get various things we need for when Daniel comes home, and had Thai for dinner courtesy my parents.

We had flurries this morning -- luckily the heavier snow all fell north of us -- and it was nice enough when we walked in the late afternoon that we saw three bunnies munching the newly exposed grass amidst what's left of the snow. Evening TV included now-on-Fridays Sleepy Hollow, though I had trouble concentrating due to the insane night online, plus we watched some more Bones. Longwood Gardens' snow:

Longwood in Snow )
littlereview: (get critical)
An Encounter )

Thursday was much nicer weather-wise than Wednesday, and if you need proof, we saw three bunnies on one neighborhood corner for the first time since winter arrived! Two of them were even sharing the same patch of grass. Most of my morning was spent writing a review and (yet again) reorganizing some things in my room that four cats have never bothered with but Katniss apparently finds to be a threat to District 12 and has to attack. (We've also had a great deal of fighting over an empty Bath & Body Works box that Effie has bitten all around the edges.)

We caught up on Arrow -- I'm sorry they had to paralyze Felicity to find a reason to give her so much to do, but I'm loving her storylines otherwise -- and watched The 100, which is now like if Game of Thrones was comprised entirely of matriarchies so I am still loving it, and Elementary which is better this season. Older son is coming to town this weekend -- he needs to be in the area for work on Monday, so they are letting him work from home the rest of the week, meaning we get to watch the Super Bowl with him! Meanwhile, from Longwood Gardens' orchid extravaganza:

Orchid Color )
littlereview: (green little review)
Cruel Cogito )

It rained nearly all day Wednesday -- I believe we're still under a flood watch -- so I did not get a lot of fresh air, and in the evening the warmer rain falling on the remaining snow created a lot of fog, like the night before. I did a bunch of work and had a bunch of cats on me, particularly while watching "Basics Part 2," the Voyager episode I need to review.

Angela and her sister Katie came over in the evening to watch the Fassbender-Cotillard Macbeth which is now out on DVD in the UK though it's not out in the US till March. It's still terrific and it was great to see them -- hopefully my cats' sneak attacks did not scare them off! Then we watched some first season Bones, which we are enjoying. Flowers at Brookside:

Conservatory Flowers )
littlereview: (get critical)
The Lily )

I did not see any groundhogs on Groundhog Day except in video footage, but I did see two bunnies out in the snow, so it must be accounted a pretty good day compared to most of January. I got laundry half-done, an article half-done, and some things around the neighborhood half-done, so that's, like, a pie and a half, right? Also I caught up on TV and am somehow less irritated by Billions, where I expect to dislike all the women, than by Supergirl and Agent Carter, the former of which has been a monumental disappointment for weeks, and the latter of which did some backstory so annoying in its implication that if the show gets canceled, I will never miss it.

Maybe I'm being too hard on Supergirl -- it's not like The Flash, which I really like, spends much time focused on the women. Not every show can have a Scully or an Elizabeth McCord, though I enjoy The X-Files and Madam Secretary so very much because of them. Galavant, at least, ended its season wonderfully, so I am hoping the cancellation bear gets to suck it yet again and the show makes an improbable comeback -- it sucks so much that Fox aired Grease: Live against its season finale. Sanders conspiracy theorists finally have me coming out as a Clinton supporter -- if only she DID have a death lock on Democratic Party policy. Lilies from Longwood Gardens:

Stargazer Lilies )
littlereview: (get critical)
Aspecta Medusa (for a Drawing) )

Happy Imbolc or Groundhog Day, whichever you might be celebrating! I spent the first day of February being a slacker and watching movies with Cheryl -- first National Treasure: Book of Secrets since we watched the first one the day before (and it co-stars Helen Mirren and the University of Maryland), then Star Wars: The Force Awakens at Montgomery Mall because we wanted to see it in the theater again before it left, then The Decoy Bride because she hadn't seen it and we were in the mood for fluffy, and finally we watched an episode of Robin of Sherwood.

In between, we picked up Indian food and tried to keep cats from eating it before we could, and we may have had some caramel corn and Junior Mints at the movies since the removal of gelatin from the latter is one of the best things to happen this century. Here are some photos of things we saw the day before at the Delaware Art Museum, particularly the beautiful exhibit on Marie Spartali Stillman, who was strongly influenced by both the Pre-Raphaelites and the Italian Renaissance. (British friends: it's on the way to the Watts Gallery in Guildford next month).

Museum Treasures )
littlereview: (little review)
Cheryl, Paul, and I spent Sunday in the Brandywine Valley at the Delaware Museum of Art's wonderful Marie Spartali Stillman exhibit and at Longwood Gardens' snow-covered outdoor gardens plus conservatory orchid extravaganza! We had dinner at the Maryland House watching a spectacular sunset and are now watching National Treasure because it always makes us happy. More tomorrow!

Art and Flowers )
littlereview: (jewitch)
The Buffy Sestina )

I had a bunch of chores to get done on Saturday morning, but by Saturday afternoon, I absolutely had to get out of the house -- someplace I could take a real walk, not the circles we've been making in the half-plowed neighborhood where we haven't gotten mail for the past two days. So we went to Brookside Gardens, which has a spring display in the conservatory and snow all over the grounds. We enjoyed the flowers and we walked on the paved paths around the frozen ponds!

Brookside in Snow )

On the way home, we stopped to do some shopping (I found a copy of Nasar's A Beautiful Mind -- with Russell Crowe on the cover -- for 50 cents at the library donated books sale) and had dinner watching Live from the Red Carpet and the SAG Awards, where pretty much everything I wanted to happen happened (I'm rooting for The Big Short for best picture at the Oscars, but since SAG gives Ensemble Cast instead and Mad Max wasn't nominated, Spotlight is very deserving.
littlereview: magical healing colours of glastonbury mandala by fiona stolze (trek)
Winter Landscape, With Rooks )

It has been an upsetting week one way or another for almost everyone I know. Our longtime neighbor died Thursday morning after a brief struggle with cancer. He gave Adam his first job, gardening and working around the house (he and his wife run an AirBnb). Friday at least was fairly quiet, though we had a snow squall in the morning that made us nervous for the five or so minutes it was really coming down before it stopped just as abruptly.

I took a walk in the much colder air after the front came through, posted a review of Voyager's still-frustrating "Basics, Part One", had dinner with my parents, and watched Our Brand Is Crisis which is about as mediocre as its reviews suggest -- acting fine but screenplay all over the place, some parts too much exposition and some parts in desperate need of more explaining, not enough humor.

Papillon )
littlereview: (green little review)
To the Saguaro Cactus Tree in the Desert Rain )

It has been a shitty day. A friend died, and I heard about two other deaths involving people much too young, both friends of friends. Plus it was the 30th anniversary of the Challenger accident and I should not have watched news related to that. I'm trying to remember what happened besides -- I started working on a Voyager review, I went to get cat litter and stopped to get some comfort food for the family of the friend who died, I watched The 100 and Elementary. Oh, and we saw a bunny out in the snow, and I won tickets to an advance screening of Eddie the Eagle with Hugh Jackman and Taron Egerton, both of which must be labeled bright spots. Cacti at the US Botanic Garden:

Indoor Desert )
littlereview: (get critical)
Silence )

I got out of the house on Wednesday! In a car! On a road! Admittedly it was just to the food store, because we were out of bagels and dangerously low on milk and only had three varieties of cat food, but that's the furthest I'd been from the house since Friday when the snow started falling. We also took a longer walk than we've managed previous days this week, though the paths into the woods are still covered with snow and a lot of the sidewalks are blocked by giant mounds of snow that may still be there in March. Speaking of winter, here's the holiday train display at the US Botanic Gardens:

Pollination Station )

We caught up on Supergirl, which was so focused on man-pain that it really depressed me, and watched Arrow, which was focused on Felicity and therefore made me happy though I found it superficial and unrealistic. In other entertainment news, I expressed my disgust with the casting of Joseph Fiennes as Michael Jackson in strong enough terms to get me defriended by someone I've known on LiveJournal for years; apparently mentioning the existence of white privilege is the equivalent of calling someone a racist and James Bond must always be white. I stand by everything I said!
littlereview: (get critical)
The Cow )

Temperatures reached nearly 50 degrees on Tuesday, which mostly meant that the vehicles already dug out could drive on roads with fewer slippery spots than on Monday. The cars that were not dug out are nearly as stuck as they were after the storm ended, and the sidewalks are still surrounded by a foot and a half of snow on either side. If you're craving adventure or excitement, I had little of either, though I am now caught up on Arrow and The 100 (which I am so glad is back -- so many awesome women).

Our evening involved a walk and conversations with neighbors, spaghetti for dinner, Agent Carter, a kitten who knocked down a beaded Renfaire crown that has hung from my mirror for probably a decade then pretended that it decided to leap onto the floor of its own free will, and The Flash, which we were excited to find from last week on demand -- huzzah, Verizon finally has The CW shows! -- before seeing the new episode when it aired. The South Mountain Creamery cows and calves we saw earlier this month:

Ice Cream Creators )
littlereview: (get critical)
Poem Excluding Fiction )

I may eventually get more than an eighth of a mile away from my house, but Monday was not that day. We finished digging out the car, and I did laundry and folded it while watching the extremely enjoyable Shaun the Sheep, and in the evening we took a brief walk around the next cul-de-sac over to see if we could see any of the wildlife we'd spotted earlier from the kitchen windows (four deer, several squirrels, lots of birds, but the bunnies were all hiding). But that's as far away as I got.

We also watched the Fassbender-Cotillard Macbeth, which is excellent -- a few changes in the drama that I wasn't crazy about, but the acting is wonderful and the setting is interesting (not Glamis Castle but a very sparse structure before he's king). Forced to choose between Supergirl and The X-Files, I went with the latter and was not at all sorry -- I hadn't realized how much I'd missed it, crack government conspiracies and all. Spot the squirrel with the deer and the big snow drifts:

Digging Out Day Two )
littlereview: (get critical)
Snow in the Suburbs )

My Sunday was about snow, football, and television, so I will be brief and boring. We had a lot of digging out to do, which was enlivened by getting to talk to a whole bunch of neighbors doing the same, but my back is sore and a lot is going to have to be dug again tomorrow because of where the plows pushed snow and how low the temperatures are tonight. I had no passionate feelings about the NFL championships games, but it's a pity Arizona didn't even seem to show up.

At least, because the score was so skewed, I was not at all sorry to switch over and watch Galavant, which did a Grease parody that was hilarious and brought back the unicorn, plus finally gave Isabella better lines, so that's all good. As for The X-Files, it is such a pleasure to see Mulder, Scully, and Skinner again, but the alien conspiracy theories seem so anachronistic and retro now that I snickered inappropriately a few times. Some pics of snow, cats, and me posing with both:

Digging Out )
littlereview: (green little review)
On a Night of Snow )

As you may perhaps have heard, the east coast of the U.S. was hit by a blizzard on Friday. We got over two feet of snow here and couldn't see across the street at some points, though the storm is pretty much over now. We discovered some important things, like juncos can find birdseed buried under several inches of snow and kittens do NOT like cold wet paws. Otherwise, it was a pretty quiet lazy day involving reading, beading, and catching up on Elementary.

According to social media, the person who enjoyed the snow most was Tian Tian, the giant panda who fathered the two young pandas at the National Zoo. Adam reports that he spent a mostly lazy day in College Park, where classes have been canceled for Monday. Paul and I watched the US ladies' figure skating championships, which were very enjoyable (I love Ashley but Gracie deserved it), and now we're watching Saturday Night Live. Birds, cats, and lots of snow:

A Day Of Snow )
littlereview: magical healing colours of glastonbury mandala by fiona stolze (trek)
Night Snow )

The plans of everyone I know for hundreds of miles around on Friday were determined by snow. It didn't start here till after noon, but we got up and organized early to move Adam back into his dorm in College Park, which was officially closed but allowing students to return a day early because they don't want students traveling on campus on Saturday. We dropped him off and were home for lunch and work, which for me consisted primarily of finishing a review of Voyager's "Resolutions", which is either the best thing or the worst thing that ever happened to the series -- maybe both.

I took a walk around dusk, though it was dark and gray all day, to see the neighborhood in snow for the first time in many months and to see whether any of the bunnies had come out (I saw fresh tracks, but no rabbits). We saw the final episode of Heroes Reborn, which had some flaws but I enjoyed as I enjoyed the whole series; we also saw the first episode of Billions, which is about profoundly unpleasant people all around. In the evening, we watched An Ideal Husband with Cheryl long distance since she's snowed in too; not a perfect Oscar Wilde adaptation, but very enjoyable with a great cast!

The Start of the Snow )
littlereview: (get critical)
El Beso )

Thursday was Adam's last day of winter break; he was supposed to move back on Saturday, but because of the impending massive historic snowstorm that's supposed to start on Friday afternoon, the school is asking students either to move in Friday morning before the storm or to wait till Sunday afternoon when the roads will be cleared, and since classes start Monday morning, he prefers to leave early (particularly since Christine is already there and the dining services will resume tomorrow evening). He's already bought textbooks and wants to get a head start on his reading.

Because of this schedule change, we went to Minerva for Indian food for lunch, stopped in Target for school supplies, and had dinner with my parents, to whom Adam explained -- along with me -- the purpose of complex numbers. Since Adam had already packed his laptop and most of his belongings by late evening, he watched Blackhat with us, which was not great but I thought was better than its reviews, though I may be biased because it has Chris Hemsworth and Viola Davis. Since Friday may be a blizzard whiteout for most of the east coast, have some orchid color from the US Botanical Garden:

We Need Color )
littlereview: (Default)
The Winter Rain )

The DC region is in full snow panic mode! We even got some tonight, though less than an inch where I live; the serious snow is supposed to arrive early Friday and continue straight through till Saturday, at some point during which we need to take younger son to College Park to start the second semester of his sophomore year. We did various chores to get ready -- can't have too much spare cat food -- while Adam went to College Park to finalize his schedule and officially register for engineering courses. I also went to the mall with my mother because the jewelry store Fire & Ice is going out of business and we wanted to get sparkly bargains!

The Everest movie with Josh Brolin, Jake Gyllenhaal, Jason Clarke, and Keira Knightley is finally on pay-per-view, and since I read pretty much every book anyone wrote about the May 1996 disaster, of course I had to see it. It was very well done and I was glad they used real names, though because I knew so much about it, I also knew when they diverted from what actually happened. Adam watched with us, and once we discovered that he didn't remember the Everest IMAX movie, we decided to watch that afterward. It's more sentimental and has swelling music where the fictional version does not, but it's still great. Great Falls in winter:

Wintry Park )


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