littlereview: (jewitch)
My Father's Hats )

Our day since 6:30 a.m. has been taken up with the happy event of Daniel's graduation from the University of Maryland! The engineering college's ceremony where the students individually cross the stage is on Friday, but the university-wide commencement was early Thursday morning at the Xfinity Center, which I've only been inside before for basketball games. The place was packed to the rafters, a Chabad rabbi conducted the moment of reflection, the string ensemble played, one of the music teachers sang the national anthem and alma mater, there were lots of happy speeches!


Graduation )


We went out afterward for pancakes, since we'd had breakfast before 7 a.m. and were all starving by the time we got to the car after 1 p.m. Then we took Daniel back to his apartment and took Adam food shopping, since he needed ice cream for the overnight movie party he's attending now, where we dropped him off on the way back from the store. On Friday we're going with all the grandparents to the engineering school reception and out to dinner. Tonight I may possibly have watched the first RDJ-Jude Law Sherlock Holmes movie and the Inspector Lewis third season finale!
littlereview: (get critical)
Farm Implements and Rutabagas in a Landscape )

After a morning getting work done, we spent the afternoon retrieving Adam from College Park after he finished his semester following his morning economics exam. He is taking summer school classes because he has decided to minor in computer science, but he has a few days off (apart from coming to graduation with us early Thursday morning). The heat has finally broken, so it was a gorgeous day to be dragging luggage out! We had veggie meatloaf for dinner and played with the cats, who are rather confused to have Adam home after being used to him not being here.

Then we watched Zodiac and I don't know why everyone thinks I watched this because Robert Downey, Jr. and Mark Ruffalo are in it, how do you know I'm not just into serial killers now? Okay, fine, my two favorite moments were when Ruffalo's character, with RDJ's character sitting behind him, says, "We gotta call the army and see if this science experiment could actually work," and later when RDJ asks Ruffalo why they haven't caught the killer after a year and a half, to which Ruffalo gets all Hulky and says "Go fuck yourself!" and RDJ says "Happily!" Maryland Zoo African animals:


Wild Africa )
littlereview: (photos)
Token Loss )

I don't have a lot to report from Tuesday except that it was as hot and muggy as Monday, despite the overnight storms that caused flooding problems in the morning. The only brief excitement was when our van's tire pressure light came on, so we took it to the dealer, who said someone probably forgot to reset it when they rotated the tires a week ago and fixed it.

We watched the season finale of The Flash, which was okay until the epic crack at the end. I kind of miss the original incarnation of one of the characters, and if what looks like a definitive exit proves to be one, I will be sad, as I liked the performer even if the character was not written well. Now it's next-to-last Letterman time. National Zoo bird house and flight cage:


With Wings )
littlereview: (photos)
And Wilt Thou Leave me Thus? )

Monday started really hot and ended with a gigantic thunderstorm, which we probably needed and hopefully will drop the temperatures! We had the plumber come for our annual inspection, the good news from which is that our downstairs sink is finally working again, the bad news from which is that we're probably going to have to rip out the wall between the upstairs bathrooms to fix the faucets properly in both tubs. I got my new custom Lilly Pulitzer purse in the mail and I love it!

Otherwise my day involved work and photo sorting and laundry and two baby bunnies trying to get in some munching before the storms arrived. After dinner we watched Jurassic Park III, which I'd only seen once and remembered nothing about but the pteranodons; it's pretty much the same nuclear-family, hubris-is-bad-and-greed-is-worse plot as the others, but, you know, DINOSAURS! Now Cheryl and I are watching Hugh Jackman on The Tonight Show! From the Renfaire yesterday:


Virginia Renfaire )
littlereview: (Default)
Lips and Eyes )

I spent most of Sunday at the Virginia Renaissance Faire (when I wasn't stuck in traffic on the way to and from the Virginia Renaissance Faire)! Paul and I picked up Annmarie on the way, and met Cheryl and Lin when we got there, at which point we were ravenous so we had crepes before we saw the Mad Mechanicals and some jugglers and did some shopping (the lady who makes peplum skirts was not there this year, but I did get a wire tiara, so all is well with the world except somehow I look too short in these photos):


Virginia Renfaire )


Since the traffic on the way home was as bad as on the way there, we stopped in Stafford to have dinner at Carlos O'Kelly's before we dropped Annmarie off at home and returned to feed our starving cats. Since there was nothing on TV but music awards and sports by the time we were settled, we watched Iron Man 3 and NO I DO NOT HAVE A TONY STARK PROBLEM, YOU HAVE A TONY STARK PROBLEM. *coughs* Anyway, the Orioles won for a change, so did the Nats, and that's all the news I heard today!
littlereview: (get critical)
Horse Vision )

So tonight my Bad Blogger excuse is that I'm having three conversations online at once. Sorry! I haven't even apologized yet for the Caps and Wizards both blowing it in the playoffs, let alone how the Orioles have been playing. I did have a nice Saturday -- we went to visit Paul's parents in Hanover, where we had lunch before Paul helped them set up a wireless network with their new computer and router while I helpfully agreed to test it by checking Facebook and Pinterest. Sadly, the groundhog was hiding. Then we went to Hanover Shoe Farms, where we saw many adorable mares and foals!


Baby Horses )


We drove home in pouring rain that made us very very late, listening to the Preakness on the radio in the car. In the evening we watched this week's very good Orphan Black (yes PLEASE let's get back to Sarah and Cosima) and started watching this week's Outlander, but midway through the badfic porn non-con prison scene, I said screw this, we're watching Saturday Night Live even if it's a terrible rerun. I am so done with that. So far SNL is entirely mediocre but I didn't feel nearly as dirty even after the elf porn skit. Now I feel better about Tony Stark sneaking into my affections!
littlereview: (trek)
Geranium, Houseleek )

Hiya. I'm watching Iron Man 2, having just watched Iron Man, because I have a Tony Stark problem and believe me no one has lost more respect for me than me. (Actually it's a Bruce Banner problem, but it's all entangled with the Tony Stark problem and WHY IS THERE NO RUFFALO HULK MOVIE YET?) So I don't even know what I'm typing.

My day involved our van windshield getting replaced and a plumbing thing getting rescheduled, and bunnies. Anyway, have a review of Voyager's "Eye of the Needle" which was the most productive thing I got done. And some flowers from Brookside Gardens' winter display, which I realized I should post before I post the spring display!


Winter Flowers )
littlereview: (get critical)
Bar Napkin Sonnet #11 )

On Thursday I had to admit that I may inadvertently have fed my cats very, very late at lunchtime. Apart from that, it was a very calm day. I did a bunch of work and chores, enjoyed the magnificent cool weather, talked to neighbors, went looking for bunnies (just one baby today), and WON PUBLISHER'S CLEARING HOUSE! (if they pick my number on whatever day in June they are picking numbers, and if I actually submit the thing).

We watched the season finale of Elementary, which I did not love apart from Joan being entirely competent in Sherlock's absence; it felt manipulative, like they wanted to maneuver Sherlock into a certain place at the start of next season and couldn't come up with a really logical reason for him to be there. Jon Stewart's tribute to David Letterman was much better. Here are some photos from the National Zoo in April with Rachel:


Spring at the Zoo )
littlereview: (get critical)
To A Stranger )

Wednesday was not more exciting around here than Tuesday or Monday, except that Paul worked from home because the van was in getting serviced and after lunch we went together to pick it up so one of us could drive it home. (I feel like I was so spoiled the last couple of weeks with so much going on that now I read as very boring.) Also the laundry is folded and I may have been watching The Avengers featurettes while doing that (Whedon always sounds so full of himself to me, but the cast is just so much fun). There were baby bunnies out on both cul-de-sacs and irises too!

It was a season finale night! I watched Arrow to see The Flash (can I call him Barry here or is that a spoiler?) but since I didn't watch most of the season I was a little lost on several points. But look, John Barrowman! And it passed the Bechdel Test, which is more than I can say about most shows I watch most weeks! Then I watched Nashville, where I loved Will's storyline but was disappointed with most of the womens' -- bet you anything the end was The Character We Don't Care About and not The Character We Do Care About. Rawlings Conservatory fairy house exhibit:


For the Fairies )
littlereview: (photos)
Superheroes as 2004 Volkswagen Passat: A Double Sonnet )

My Tuesday was...well, pretty much a repeat of Monday, only with more Science Bros. and fewer bunnies (I imagine that the bunnies were there, but it was hotter and muggier and apparently they preferred not to be out in the sun). Plus there was more horrifying news from Nepal and whatever happened with that train in Philadelphia, which the news is reporting with no facts. I took a walk in the woods in hope of seeing deer, but instead I saw tent caterpillar nests. I have no photos of caterpillars yet since they haven't hatched, but here are some of the inhabitants of Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden's Butterflies Live!


Richmond Wings )


The Flash began on a promising note, with Iris actually getting to do things before her boyfriend, her wannabe boyfriend, and her father all reduced her to making her decisions for her again so that three white superheroes could go fight a rather more diverse group of villains. Agents of SHIELD looked like it had a few cool things going on in its season finale (though I'm always wary when a man is redeemed on the grounds that his woman is crazy), but our second half was repeatedly interrupted by the news to tell us that they didn't have details about the train derailment but look, grainy dark footage!
littlereview: (get critical)
The Undertaking )

My Monday was a Monday -- not a bad one, we didn't even get the forecast thunderstorm, but it was all about work and chores so I have nothing exciting to report except that there are now baby birds in the Season Zen screen saver and we saw TWO baby bunnies on our cul-de-sac, a first for the season!

We spent the evening catching up on two weeks' worth of Orphan Black (still not loving the Castor obsession even with the Big Reveal, I miss seeing more of Cosima and even Rachel, plus it's a little late to get me invested in Beth). Some photos from a couple of weeks ago of the Smithsonian orchids:


Orchids on Display )
littlereview: (jewitch)
The Resistance and Its Light )

I had a nice, busy Mother's Day that started with a ride to College Park to pick up both sons, then my parents and Paul's parents came over and Paul made us brunch (cheese and fruit, French toast casserole with pecans, veggie sausage-hash brown casserole, asparagus-mozzarella salad, Boston cream pie) which was delicious! We hung out, chatted, watched a bit of the Nationals game (which eventually ended well, though the Orioles game did not), then took the kids back to start finals week.

Paul and I stopped at several stores trying to find USA Today with no luck until we tried Barnes & Noble, where we found the issue but not the article dated Friday online. We came home for the season finale of Once Upon a Time (guys, you cannot call Emma the savior and keep letting Henry have the actual storylines), then last week's Elementary (pretty good) and Last Week Tonight (great Mother's Day segment, much better than that atrocious Anne Lamott article I saw on Facebook). Moms:


...and Kids )
littlereview: (photos)
The Snow Leopard Mother )

Saturday was gorgeous and, after a slightly drizzly morning, very warm! We went to the Montomgery Potters' spring pottery sale at Colesville Presbyterian Church, then we went to Brookside Gardens, which was bursting with azaleas and irises as well as lots of animals -- we saw half a dozen snakes and as many snapping turtles, a family of goslings, spotted turtles, red-eared sliders, barn swallows, frogs, ducks, fish, tadpoles, and many other birds! Then we drove to Garrett Park, a town designated an arboretum where the trees and flowers in pretty much every yard are gorgeous (and we saw a bunny, too)!


Azaleas and More )


We stopped to do a little shopping, had spaghetti for dinner, and watched Outlander, which dragged ridiculously following Claire's pirate Renfaire performances which somehow were supposed to help Jamie find her -- maybe this made sense in the book, but it came across as absurd on TV -- then the Graham Norton with Rebel Wilson and Mumford & Sons. Hey, I need a favor: Does anyone happen to have a copy of Friday's USA Today? They printed a photo of mine (of the USS Constellation and Michael Rosman of the MDRF) and I would love a print copy! Thank you! Happy Mother's Day!
littlereview: (trek)
In Vino Veritas )

It was a fairly typical Friday: I wrote a review of Voyager's "The Cloud" (whyyy do I still love it), saw four bunnies, had dinner with my parents, proofread a paper for Adam, cleaned up after a sick cat who is no longer allowed to mooch popcorn.

Now I am watching The Avengers (the first one -- I was having a huge urge for Science Brothers) with Paul and (long distance) Cheryl so I will keep this short. Here are photos of lambs at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival:


Sheep and Lambs )
littlereview: (jewitch)
The Garden )

I got to spend Thursday with Cheryl, since she had to postpone from earlier in the week after a crisis with her cat. We went to Lebanese Taverna to get lunch and spent the rest of the day with Sean Bean, er, that is, Richard Sharpe...sadly not in person, but we watched Sharpe's Waterloo, Sharpe's Challenge, and Sharpe's Peril, thus finishing off the series, which I will miss but will undoubtedly rewatch again -- one episode every two weeks would last more than six months!

We took a walk to see the baby bunny before Cheryl left and were successful in finding him (see photos below)! Then Paul and I ate dinner and watched enough of the Orioles loss to the Yankees to see A-Rod pass Mays on the home run list before we put on Dig, which ended as crazily as it began. Why were the Orthodox Jews working in collaboration with the Fundamentalist Armageddon nuts? Who provided the DNA for the mini-Jesus? I love Jason Isaacs, but I have so many questions!


Spring Baby Bunny )
littlereview: (photos)
Coming and Going )

I have eaten a ridiculous amount in the past two weeks, but I ate a truly ridiculous amount on Wednesday. I had lunch with Kay at Tara Thai -- I had not seen her in more than a month, since before my family went to France and her son decided where he's going to college -- then I went out to dinner at The Melting Pot with Paul to use a Living Social deal before it expired in two days. I forgot that their California salad is the best salad in the world and that there is no substitute for chocolate fondue.

Obviously that was most of the excitement from my day, though did a bit of shopping, walked around Washingtonian Lake, and saw a family of goslings relaxing near the boat launch, which was also being guarded by geese and ducks. We finally caught up on last week's Elementary (no thanks to Verizon whose HD version wasn't working) and saw this week's Nashville (enough with the contrived arguments, more music). I didn't take photos of the three fondue courses we ate, but I am happy to share the goose family!


Teeny Baby Geese )
littlereview: (get critical)
I Am Vertical )

My Tuesday was about work and chores, with breaks for azaleas and bunnies (we found another baby bunny lurking in a different bush in our neighborhood)! Last week was crazy, but the rest of May looks to be nearly as much so. We had meatless tacos for dinner because even if Cinco de Mayo is primarily an appropriated excuse for a big drinking festival, I get in the mood for Mexican food after all the mentions of it.

I liked The Flash, which I think almost passed the Bechdel test this week, and I'll give Agents of SHIELD a pass because it actually did pass, even though the Super Special Snowflakeness of Skye was the focus of the story. Forever's season ended on a very nice note, a perfect jumping-off point for fan fiction because it's probably the last-ever episode. Some photos from Brighton Dam's azalea garden on Sunday:


By the Dam )
littlereview: (photos)
Imaginary June )

Monday was pretty much all chores, which was fine, considering how much playing I got to do last week and over the weekend. I didn't even do any Star Wars stuff for May 4th, unless pretending to be Yoda while talking to the cats in the laundry room counts. The weather was nice, over 80 degrees, and there were three baby squirrels on our cul-de-sac and three bunnies hopping around the cul-de-sac across the street.

We had leftover Chinese food for dinner, caught up on Once Upon a Time (on which a woman deciding to make sure she can never have children means she has Ruined Her Life Forever, ugh), then watched the Davie Letterman retrospective special, which had its moments but also reminded me why I've mostly preferred other late night hosts in recent years. Some of the titular stars of the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival:


Sheep and Their Wool )
littlereview: (jewitch)
Spring Night )

Sunday was as beautiful a day as Saturday and I got to do more lovely things! Annmarie came over and Paul made us all brunch, then we drove to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival past lots of flowers and farms in Howard County. We saw many lambs and sheep, plus lots of crafts, food, and yarn from Kiparoo and Dancing Leaf farms. On the way to College Park afterward, we stopped at Brighton Dam's azalea garden, which isn't at peak yet, but there were plenty of pink and purple flowers and the white and red ones were starting to open.


Flora and Fauna )


We took Daniel food shopping and dropped him off at his study group, left a bag of food for Adam as well, and went with Annmarie to California Tortilla for burritos before she had to go home. Then we watched Madam Secretary (not sure it's believable -- though, really, Whitewater wasn't either -- but it's a lot of fun to watch) and an episode of Inspector Lewis. I know I haven't talked about sports much because I don't really care whether American Pharaoh beat Mayweather (I stole that joke from SNL), but the Wizards and Caps are making me happy!

May the Fourth Be With You!
littlereview: (get critical)
Songs of a Girl )

I have had a really awesome Saturday! We went to Lake Whetstone in Gaithersburg, where in addition to lots of flowering trees and bushes and red-winged blackbirds and finches, we saw geese with goslings, ducks with ducklings, green and great blue herons, turtles, frogs, and the sheep and llama on the farm behind the lake:


Animals Around the Lake )


Then we went to see The Avengers: Age of Ultron with Heather, Sharkie, and several other fans. I loved it, maybe even more than the first -- less disaster porn than I was expecting and more of my favorite characters (plenty of Natasha, Maria, Bruce, and Steve, less Tony snark and no Pepper, heh).

After the movie, we all went to Tara Thai, then we came home and watched Ruffalo, Renner, and Olsen teasing each other on The Graham Norton Show. Now we're watching this week's Outlander, which is extremely women's novelish this week (women talk husbands and babies, men talk ruffians and local politics).

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