sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

February 15, 2013

a great start, together, and livin’ on a prayer
posted by soe 7:03 pm

Today is not Thursday. Yesterday was Thursday. And, yet, somehow, when I thought yesterday afternoon, you should write a TBT post before dinner, I then said, but it’s not Thursday. It’s Wednesday, so that would be silly. And so…

A day late, but no less lovely, here are three beautiful things from my past week:

Birthday Orchids

1. Yesterday was my birthday! I turned 39 and celebrated by taking the day off, as I like to do. Rudi got up early and went up to the best bakery in our neck of the woods to procure breakfast and made me a cup of loose-leaf tea to drink with my doughnuts. I watched a Loretta Young romantic comedy (The Doctor Takes a Wife) on tv in my pj’s. A trio of orchids arrived from my uncle. Cards arrived in the mail. I got dressed up in my neon blue tutu and my fairy crown and went and wandered around the neighborhood, stopping for an ice cream cone and to buy a few books and to sit in the park. Rudi and I polished off a whole pizza. I got some very nice presents (including a concert ticket to see fun. next July). And I heard from most of the very important people in my life. I’d like to believe this is precisely what 39 is going to look like.

2. Rudi took Sunday off from skiing and from cycling, and spent the whole day with me instead. We went to the farmers market. We ate brunch. We went ice skating. We ate cupcakes.

3. We culminated Sunday’s together time by going to see Bon Jovi. They had a nice blend of songs from over the whole of their careers, including some new ones from the album that comes out next month. That they seem to still like playing together after all this time was nice to see. Also, I don’t think I’ve ever heard girls/women squeal that high (and I’ve seen New Kids on the Block), and I don’t think I’ve ever heard people sing aloud so deafeningly as when the band ended on my (and everyone else’s apparently) favorite song by the band. It’s clear that I am not the only one who sings at the top of my lungs when their songs come on the radio. It was a fantastic night.

How about you? What was beautiful in your world this week?

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February 14, 2013

the cybils winners are in!
posted by soe 3:15 am

Cybils logo

As you know, I was a first-round judge of realistic young adult fiction for the Cybils last fall. Our panel cumulatively read nearly 200 books and passed along our consensus of the top seven among them to the shortlist panel. They had the challenging assignment of picking a sole winner among that group, a task that seems herculean to me.

Narrow it down they did, however, and tonight the winner was unveiled: (more…)

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February 12, 2013

a poll
posted by soe 11:12 pm

Which of these books do I want to read next:

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three monthly resolutions: february
posted by soe 3:12 am

Last month, I wrote that I was going to eschew annual goals in favor of three more manageable monthly goals.

January Resolutions

I am pleased to report that I accomplished January’s goals, which were:

  1. Do not buy hot drinks in disposable cups. I cut back on to-go drinks in general, but also started carrying a travel mug with me in my messenger bag most of the time.
  2. Attend a Tuesday night swing class/dance. My resolution-making started mid-month, which didn’t leave me many options for swing classes. I fudged it, sending an email in January inviting friends to attend the first swing class in February.
  3. Get my reader card for the Library of Congress. Now I just need to figure out what I want to look at first!

Again, we’re more than a third of the way through the month when I make my goals (I’ll work on that in March), but here’s what I hope to accomplish in February:

  1. Ice skate at the two new rinks in D.C. There are now three outdoor rinks in D.C., and, while I’ve skated at the rink at the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden, I haven’t been in several years. A trifecta would be awesome for the season, but I’ll settle for checking out the new rinks in Georgetown and over by the Navy Yard.
  2. Mend all my clothing that needs it. I have knit items that need darning. I have rent fabric items that need patching/sewing up. I have buttons that need to be refastened. I keep thinking, I’ll get to that later and put things back into the closet or drawers, but they’re just taking up valuable space if I don’t ever get to the fixing stage.
  3. Begin a 100 push-up program. When I did the ropes course last summer, I discovered that while my leg strength is acceptable, my arm strength resembles that of the 90-pound weakling. I have a goal for later in the year that requires a good deal of upper-body strength, so this seems like a good time to get going on it. (I will try regular push-ups, but if I can’t manage any, I’m totally going for the ones where you work off your knees instead of your toes to start with.)

How about you? How are your resolutions going?

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February 10, 2013

best reads of 2012
posted by soe 11:20 pm

I have to face facts: I’m not going to get caught up in reviewing the books I read last year.

However, I’m not going to let that prevent me from doing some summarizing and some recommending. If I’ve reviewed the book, I’ll include the link. But if we don’t go this route, I’ll still be contemplating my year-end post next fall (like the 2011 best reads post I never published last year).

I finished 100 books last year. These are the 10 best (with a few honorable mentions): (more…)

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February 7, 2013

solo, with a group, and a loaner
posted by soe 11:41 pm

Three beautiful things from my past week:

1. I follow up last week’s successful venture on my own to a bookish Tweetup by heading off to word game night with strangers at the local gaming establishment.

2. I invite folks to go swing dancing, and the response is enthusiastic. Apparently the whole city picks up on this vibe, because the free intro class has 62 people packed into it. Four among our group are considering the month-long Lindy Hop class that begins next week.

3. My coworker friend has received Brave from Netflix, and, knowing it’s the final movie Rudi and I need to see to complete the animated film category of the Oscars, offers us her copy instead of sending it right back. It saves us a trip to a Red Box. (Interestingly, the D.C. Public Library doesn’t seem to have any copies (I assume it was a catalog search error) and the Arlington copy had over 100 holds on it when I last looked.)

How about you? What’s been beautiful in your world this week?

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