Monday, February 25, 2019


Just had a lovely chat with my Aunt E; well, as lovely a chat as you can have with a patient in hospital. She's slightly bored and a bit annoyed that she can't go home. But she said the nurses are kind and taking good care of her and she's enjoying all the phone calls.

Tiny things, but meaningful.

Sunday, February 24, 2019

untitled #8452

If you like zippy food, I highly recommend making egg salad with Trader's wasabi mayo! I am looking forward to snack time this week.

Now I can identify my seedlings; chives, basil, and the oregano is juuuust poking through. It's been wonderful to be home during daylight and to have a quiet Sunday to prep for the week.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

wheat that springeth green

Voila~the beginnings of my herb garden!! I actually don't remember what I planted where, so will have to watch the leaves emerge.

Just home after another twelve-hour workday. But. Oh, glorious but....the accreditation team wrapped things up one full day early!!!!!!!!!!!!!! While they are not supposed to make personal comments/opinions~it was clear that they were completely happy and impressed with our hyper-organized pre-visit and files and reports, blah/blah/blah.

They did genuinely thank us for a great site visit and said that they enjoyed meeting us, our staff, and students.

And in the most marvelous timing ever, tomorrow is a snow day and I can sleep in!

Saturday, February 16, 2019

more quiet joys

Had hilarious lessons this morning; I took the "P is for Pterodactyl" book for my ESL lesson. It's a great book for any day/occasion but we got derailed on a simpler word from the book~'folks'. My student's accent is still fairly strong and she was trying to change 'forks' to 'folks' and you can imagine where it went from there. We were crying with laughter.

Am proud of the progress my two adult piano students are making as well. And the house where I teach has an enthusiastic dog that is my new best friend. He sits with his head on my leg throughout the lessons.

Finally got some dough to rise and made my very first loaf of sourdough!!!!!!!!

Some teeny asparagus to roast and the news that a friend's surgery went well.

Thursday, February 14, 2019


Check me out~all official and everything. Now I need to find restaurants that do those free lunch drawings and go drop my card in.

Realized that I haven't really done a baking project this year, so decided VD was a perfect time to concoct something deliciously chocolate. 

Chopping chocolate, 

scooping mascarpone,

and admiring the magical quality of whipping cream. Srsly, who figured out that cream could transform like this?

Another successful creation from one of my most-used cookbooks.

My colleagues were thrilled with their gifts, and I won't even tell on those who ate these for breakfast.

And in other news and on the other coast, my dad turned 80 today!! Wish I were there to celebrate, but we had a nice visit via phone.

Hope your day was also filled with love.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

just dabbling

is what the colleague says about her baking hobby...yeah. The entire school was wowed by this four-layer chocolate cake today. What's amusing is that I helped her find the stencil for the girl/bubbles outline~she told me it was for a cake for her husband. 

Monday, February 11, 2019

petits cadeaux

A fun and unexpected gift from a former teacher. 

And this slushy sloppy day needed these decadent inventions~garlic mashed potato balls. Rolled them in panko and paprika. YUM.

Saturday, February 9, 2019


Blue Tango in the Botanical Garden

Finally had some free hours AND the government is back in business~which means all the museums and galleries are open again. It was just a divine afternoon. 

Most places were packed, so I was delighted to have a bit of solo time in this fun interactive room.

The artist of above installation.

I know I've posted this before, but it fascinates me how the random letters/numbers create a face.

Feasting on colours, and art, and a bit of pizza, and hours of city walking was just what my soul needed.

This room made of foil amuses me. And astonishes, on one level.

I've heard it's all around.

The courtyard in the National Portrait Gallery is getting ready for an orchid exhibit.

While I was sitting and admiring~fell into a random conversation with Gail. We had a lovely exchange about the need for quiet and beauty and art.

Turns out that she's a Jehovah's Witness from South Africa and she popped in from running the curb kiosk to warm herself. A beautiful connection and interweaving of a few moments.

And then? I made the mistake of thinking that everyone else was out on social/fun Saturday night activities and popped into Trader's for my weekly shopping. Oy to the vay. The lines were Christmas-level in length.

But I am utterly thrilled that I have not ONE single thing on my calendar tomorrow. I fully intend to not interact nor groom all day. I will be tackling my first sourdough bread baking, so stayed tuned.

Friday, February 8, 2019

nature vs. nurture

I remember rather earnest Psych 101 classes where a bunch of clueless 18 yos gave our opinions on child rearing. While a solid home and loving parents are to be appreciated~in the past few years~observing my Littles, I am leaning towards Nature. These itty bitty people come just as they ARE. Even from a few weeks old, you can see definite personality traits.

Got a sweet little thank you card from the middle niece. I know she was most excited that I gave her an entire bag of Starbursts with the rest of her gift.

And this! My sis told the child to eat her breakfast so they could leave for school and this is what she turned around and saw. When you're just not in the mood for school/work, why pretend otherwise???

Still savoring my home SO much. Even with the vile commute and super long hours right now; it is just divine to come back to a space that's lovely and allllllllll mine. And now I get to nest in for the weekend.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

fish guts

While I only lived in the wilds of Virginia for one school year, I still list so many gratitudes from that experience. Being able to simply (well, depending on traffic) pop into Trader's, visit art galleries, hop on Metro, see my Littles within a few moments, etc. etc. etc.

But after an email today where a friend said that some bird dropped cat guts onto her sister's car? I was reminded how much I LOVE living where ospreys do not drop snakes and/or fish guts upon me as I walk home from work.

So. There's that. 

Today, we went through another THREE pots of coffee at work and the DJ kept insisting that it was 7 January...time for this grey malaise to be gone.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019


These three little files represent months of work for our upcoming site visit. Trying to get as much as possible done this week in case we get snowed out/in next week.

A rainy day was an excellent excuse to pull out these fun polka dots!

And woo-hoo! I'm a registered voter in my new county.

Tuesday, February 5, 2019


Had my 90 day review at work today and signed a new contract. Comes with a miniscule raise and a health stipend. But the truly good part of the day was having dinner with my brother~in town for work. Lovely to briefly catch up and to enjoy some spicy tofu to kick off the Year of the Boar.

Monday, February 4, 2019

gung hay fat choy!

If all y'all weren't all about the January new year hoopla, here's another chance for a fresh start.

Sunday, February 3, 2019

the fun side of snow

After some grumpiness over losing paying hours and dicey/icky commutes this past week, it was fun to actually have some fun with the snow. Got to spend some time with my Littles~they had a bit of cabin fever after spending the entire week at home. Snow angels were made and many shrieking sled trips were had down both the front/back yards. I didn't have my phone out, but we had a lot of rosy-cheeked fun.

We managed to get airborne in the sled and take out a driveway light, so it was hugely successful in our book.

Then it was time for a Christmas movie and popcorn. I hadn't seen Santa Paws II and while I wouldn't recommend it, it was fun to watch the kids watch the movie.

The littlest one still isn't quite sure about me. She'll deign to play with me for a bit and then wants her Mama. 

Soaking up the remaining baby hours.