sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

November 30, 2013

cozy is…
posted by soe 3:11 am

Cozy is …

  • Snuggly cats
  • Pots of hot tea
  • Wool socks
  • Curling up with my sweetie
  • Cradling a mug of hot cocoa
  • Sleeping in

The Sleepers

  • A shawl wrapped tight
  • Napping on the sofa under a blanket
  • Tomato soup and a grilled cheese sandwich
  • Changing into pajamas
  • A rainy or snowy afternoon spent under a quilt with a book
  • Handknits

(Writing along with Amanda.)

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November 29, 2013

josh, companions, and there is too such a thing
posted by soe 1:25 am

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I hope you had a nice day filled with loved ones and tasty food.

Here are three beautiful things from my past week:

1. My brother made a surprise (to me, at least) trip home for Thanksgiving.

2. We went to see the Doctor Who 50th anniversary special at the movie theater with a couple dozen fans (the show didn’t start until 10 p.m. on a Monday, so it was less popular than most of the other local shows, which sold out). It was fun to watch the 3-D episode with the company of others.

3. Just as a coworker and I are about to head out in search of food, salad fixings left over from a lunch meeting arrive in the office kitchen. I heap a plate high with greens, beets, and other healthy — and free! — ingredients.

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

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November 27, 2013

coffeeneuring, part 3: the conclusion
posted by soe 3:09 pm

Below, find the third and final Coffeeneuring report. (Links to Part 1 and Part 2.)

Ride #6: Nov. 3
The Coffee Bar, 1201 S St., N.W., Washington, D.C.
2.6 miles

I’d biked past this place in Shaw several times and seen people sitting out in the sun, so wanted to make sure we made it over. And, frankly, after such an eventful Coffeeneuring ride on Saturday, something close and easy sounded really good.



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coffeeneuring, part 2: the big chair ride
posted by soe 4:11 am

Yesterday, I wrote about my October Coffeeneuring rides. Today we get the four first ride I did in November:

Ride #5: Nov. 2
H Street Coffee House & Café, 1359 H St., N.E., Washington, D.C.
17.38 miles

This was my epic ride of the event. Following a stop at the Meet Market craft fair, I had decided I was going to head across the river to Anacostia’s sole coffeehouse, Big Chair Coffee. To get there, I rode down to the Tidal Basin,


past first the marina,


then the fishmarket, and then Fort McNair. I pedaled through Buzzard Point and over the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge. It’s worth noting that the center of the bridge is a drawbridge and it gives your stomach butterflies to pause there, even if the clouds and the view of Alexandria are magnificent.


The view of the east side of the Anacostia


is far superior to that of the west.



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November 26, 2013

coffeeneuring without the coffee: part 1
posted by soe 1:43 am

Coffeeneuring, the third annual, seven-stop coffeeshop bike ride challenge, ran from early October to mid-November. I originally planned to share these stops as I did them, but that only worked for two of eight (#1 & #4), so I’ve reproduced them both in my extended event reports.

My rides split neatly in half by month, so below are the October rides:

Ride #1: Saturday, Oct. 5
Teaism, 2009 R St., N.W., Washington, D.C.
3.11 miles

Coffeenuring #1: Teaism

I started the weekend slowly, having slept past the event I’d planned to take part in on Saturday morning. I puttered for a while, did some chores, but failed to find any food that appealed. So, I thought, I could tie in my bike ride and coffee shop quest with a snack. By this point, it was later in the afternoon and my ride also had to include a stop at the garden, where my plants were awaiting water, parched after a week of sun and warm temperatures. Watering and picking vegetables takes time, though, even for such a small community garden spot as mine and by the time I finished up, it was getting close to 5.

My original hope for the day was to visit a coffeeshop (Bourbon) nearby that I hadn’t yet tried. I took the L Street cycletrack over to L, but they’d put away their food. No worries, I thought. There’s a second location of Filter over by GW, and my phone suggests it’s open until 6. Not, apparently, on weekends, when it isn’t open at all.

Fine. I can start this week with a known entity: Bread & Brew is on the way home and they have a nice outdoor deck and tasty bread pudding (even if their tea leaves something to be desired). As I pedal up the hill, I notice the windows are dark and the patio deserted. They, too, were closed.

By this point, I’d pretty much given up hope, but then realized sometimes your heart’s desire can indeed be found in your own backyard: Teaism in Dupont Circle is 1.5 blocks from my house, but after all the other shops I visited, I completed the day’s ride with 3.11 miles under my belt.

I celebrated with chai and naan, my teahouse version of tea and cinnamon toast and my default to-stay order at Teaism, on the bench outside the front door.


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November 25, 2013

posted by soe 2:56 am

It was a slightly disappointing weekend. I had grand plans for what I was going to accomplish this final weekend before Thanksgiving, two weeks out from my annual holiday party and I failed on nearly every front.

Yes, there were some successes: I did go on the doughnut bike ride with friends. I went to the farmers market. I made it to the garden for the last major culling of the season, picking the final peppers and two small, but sincere tomatillos still clinging to the plant. I watched the first Christmas film of the year. I sent an email that I’ve been putting off. I found some cds I was looking for. I saw the season’s first snowflakes. And I finished listening to Two Boys Kissing.

But I didn’t clean. I didn’t tidy. I didn’t get the table clear or the laundry done. I didn’t sort through the closet or the drawers in the bedroom. I didn’t get off-season shoes put away or the clothes hung on hangers rather than draped over the pole. I spent yesterday evening nearly comatose on the couch. I didn’t make slaw or applesauce or lasagna or cookie dough. I didn’t finish any other books. I didn’t write. I knit the heel on my sock four times unsatisfactorily.

Okay, so maybe it wasn’t a complete failure. Writing it down offers some perspective. But it just doesn’t feel like I used the weekend to its — or my — best potential.

(Writing along with Amanda.)

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