sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

May 31, 2016

ten on tuesday: weekending
posted by soe 1:50 am

Weekending with Karen at Pumpkin Sunrise and Ten on Tuesday’ing with Carole at Carole Knits:

Late-May Garden

  1. The weekend began with our traditional Friday night picnic by the waterfront. We were more together than usual, which meant that Michael and Julia had brought an entree and Rudi and I had brought dessert, in addition to the other drinks and tapas we usually make a meal out of.
  2. I got up early on Saturday to bike down to the sand courts near the Lincoln Memorial to play volleyball with some of the folks from the team I’ve been playing with. I did not get up early enough to eat breakfast beforehand, which was not a mistake I should make again.
  3. Sarah and I then headed out to the countryside to pick strawberries. It was 90 degrees and humid and brightly sunny. We picked for an hour, and we were drained by the end of it. I came home with about four quarts of berries.
  4. I stopped at the local garden center/co-op place and picked up some more basil, since mine vanished, thanks, I assume, to the slugs.
  5. I went to the park to hang out and read, but instead fell fast asleep in the shade after I finished my mango lassi. A nap was precisely what the rest of the day demanded.
  6. On Sunday, we got up and watched the final stage of the Giro d’Italia (similar to the Tour de France in bike racing importance and difficulty, but set in Italy and less famous) and a couple bits of CBS Sunday Morning.
  7. We then headed out to the farmers market.
  8. Later in the day, we went to the local pool, which opened this weekend for the season.
  9. Today, we slept in. It was glorious.
  10. I went to the garden and planted the latest round of vegetation. I also harvested a handful of strawberries and strung some string trellises for my peas.
  11. We ended the weekend by watching Love and Mercy, the Brian Wilson biopic from last year. It wasn’t really my thing, but I could appreciate that it was well done.

That’s one more than called for by Carole, but long weekends were made to break the rules.

How about you? How was your (long) weekend?

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May 27, 2016

unfamiliar sight, baseball, and hey, hey
posted by soe 3:31 am

Three beautiful things from the week before the unofficial start to the summer season:

1. After weeks of grey skies and rain in the D.C. area (19 of the first 23 days of the month featured rain), the sun emerged and we’ve now had three whole days in a row of blue skies.

2. The Mets not only win the game we attend at Nationals Park on Monday in a decisive victory, but also finish the series up 2-1 to pull back within two games of the league lead. The Nats’ ex-Met second-baseman, Daniel Murphy, saw his team-leading batting average go up during the series, as well, so it’s a win all around.

3. Poor sales, discounted tickets, and good luck led us to see the Peter Tork/Micky Dolenz Monkees show this evening. We sang along to old favorites, laughed at some antics, and enjoyed some new songs off the album (with Mike Nesmith) that drops tomorrow.

The Monkees (Peter & Micky) at the Warner Theatre

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

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May 20, 2016

good news, generosity, and old friend (& memento)
posted by soe 2:43 am

Three beautiful things from my past week:

1. The vendor from whom I buy my Street Sense, the local homeless newspaper, shares that one of the farmers at our market is going to employ him for the summer and that if it works out, it might turn into something more permanent. Earlier this year, he got an apartment, so I’m thinking 2016 is his year.

2. Rudi and I go out to dinner for his birthday, courtesy of a gift certificate from my brother and his partner. We eat extravagantly, but only have to pay for tax and tip.

3. Rebs calls at midnight (because, as old friends, she knows we are up) to wish Rudi a happy birthday, and then when he’s done, she and I get to chat.

Bonus: I’ve mentioned before, I think, that Corey sometimes likes to bring his toys to bed to keep himself occupied while we sleep. Usually they’re straws or twist ties, but this morning I awoke to find Rudi’s Teva, last seen just before bed on the other side of the apartment, lying next to me.

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

Category: three beautiful things. There is/are 3 Comments.

May 16, 2016

mid-may weekending
posted by soe 11:06 am

This weekend was pleasant, but oh, so short!


On Friday after work, we celebrated the sun by taking our books and beverages up to the park. This park is one of my favorite things about my neighborhood, and I ended up there on Saturday, too, when it was a bit less fair out. But there’s a little caretaker cottage that gets used during the summertime with a generous overhang, so as you can see I didn’t let a little rain stop me.

Saturday Reading in the Park

I’m really pleased with the camera on my new phone and I took a bunch of photos on my walk home”

Buttercup after the Rain

Spider Webs


Saturday also included a visit to a couple embassies for EU Day, when members of the European Union open their D.C. embassies to the public for a few hours. I visited Cypress briefly, where things were winding down, but then moved on to Slovenia, which was far more lively.

Slovenian Musicians at EU Day

In the evening, we had a party for Rudi at our local board game bar. We ate and drank, had cupcakes, and played Trvial Pursuit and Jenga, both of which Rudi won, which seemed only appropriate.

Rudi Plays Jenga

Yesterday, I went to the farmers market and spent three plus hours in the garden. You can see that the violets and the sorrel had been loving the rain:

Spring at the Garden: Before

I yanked violet leaves (although left most of the roots), because they share the plot with my strawberries and had far eclipsed them in height. Now that sun was in the forecast, they needed to be able to start turning red! I also got 20 plants in the ground, most of which were acquired last weekend at Sheep & Wool. It took a while, but I hope this will be my last long day in the garden for a while.

Strawberries in the Garden

Spring at the Garden: After

This morning I was up early to get breakfast for Rudi, since it’s his birthday. After work, we’re going out to dinner at a new-to-us restaurant (a Christmas present from my brother).

How was your weekend?

Weekending along with Karen at Pumpkin Sunrise.

May 13, 2016

communal, sweet from a sweet, and win
posted by soe 1:57 am

Three beautiful things from my past week:

Rose from the Garden

1. The rose bush in our community garden is blooming. I liberate a bud and bring it home, where it’s been making my kitchen pretty.

2. Rudi bakes strawberry-rhubarb crisp for dessert.

3. My volleyball team won its final regular season game.

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

Category: three beautiful things. There is/are 4 Comments.

May 12, 2016

bookish wednesday
posted by soe 12:01 am

Several bookish items to check off today:

Early May Yarn-AlongFirst, here’s my Yarning Along photo. I picked up Paper Girls, a graphic novel written by Brian Vaughan about a quartet of middle-school paper girls back on Nov. 1, 1988, when weird goings-on start up in their hometown of Cleveland. I was a middle-school paper girl myself on that date, and although very little supernatural happened to me at the time, I couldn’t help but pick it up when I saw it on sale at Comic Book Day last weekend.

The knitting is my vanilla sock that just so happens to match my new book. I’m through the heel decreases and back to foot knitting thanks to a work meeting and some tv time.



Bout of BooksMy Bout of Books progress is going well. In addition to my above reading, I’m also still listening to Ally Carter’s All Fall Down and reading Mansfield Park, where I just passed the halfway point today. I’m hopeful two of the three will be done by the end of the week and may check a third book off, as well.

Tomorrow’s challenge asks us to recommend a book, and I’m happy to comply. If you like light crime/crime solving with an Audrey Hepburn-like lead, a merry band of urchins, and a Parisian setting, I recommend you check out Bandette, Vol. 1: Presto, a graphic novel by Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover. The sequel was another one of the graphic novels I picked up over the weekend, and I can’t wait to see what happens next in this fun caper.

Armchair BEAFinally, today was the first day of Armchair BEA, and organizers asked us to introduce ourselves by answering some questions:

1. What is the name you prefer to use? I go by many names, but Sprite is probably how I’m best known online.

2. How long have you been a book blogger? I have been blogging since 2005 and published my first book review in my first week of publishing.

3. Have you participated in ABEA before? This will be my fourth year.

4. Do you have a favorite book? I know it sounds trite to say Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone, but I’m going to say it anyway. When I’m feeling low or am in a reading slump, I know that finding myself back on Privet Lane will get me through it.

5. If you could recommend one other book blogger, who would it be and why? Raidergirl3, who blogs from Prince Edward Island, writes An Adventure in Reading, and was probably the first book blogger I followed. She likes audiobooks and crime series and fantasy novels, so I guess I like her because we have similar taste and therefore I feel confident that if she likes something there’s a good chance I’ll like it, as well.

6. How do you arrange your bookshelves? Is there a rhyme or reason? Or not at all? Two rows of one bookshelf contain favorite series, including Alcott, Fforde, Tolkein, Montgomery, Lewis, Rowling, and Wilder. (They also contain a book that belonged to my dad’s aunt that my grandmother passed on to me as a child, my favorite Seuss, my bible, and my now ancient dictionary and thesaurus.) After that, there’s sort of a loose organization, with knitting books in one spot and poetry in another and writing books yet another. Language books are by the door. Cookbooks are on the butcher block. Fiction is everywhere. Library books are in a bag next to my chair.

7. What book are you most excited for on your TBR? What are you most intimidated by? On my overall TBR list? Good god, that’s thousands of books! Ummm… At this moment, I’m staring at Rainbow Rowell’s Carry On, which I’m excited to finally get to this spring. I don’t know that any book particularly intimidates me, but there are some that I feel like I ought to read, rather than that I want to read them, and at the top of that list is Thoreau’s Walden, which I tried reading several times several years ago unsuccessfully.

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