It has been a long couple of weeks of home and car repair stressors. But I’m finally taking some time to finish my moot write up that I started a couple of weeks ago now. I was a bit absent here in the spring focusing on moot prep, and since it focusing on household stuff that got pushed aside and not so good with keeping up with posts and comments here. I’m working my way back.

So we had this moot Memorial Day weekend. (-:


The moot started a couple of hours later than planned—Friday morning I heard from poor [ profile] hildigard_brown that her flight out of Austin was cancelled and she was rebooked for Saturday afternoon. I was sad not to meet her that morning and for the time she would miss out on, but I took the time to relax, take a walk before the day got too hot, and then drive up to the bus station in Baltimore to pick up [ profile] aliensouldream and [ profile] gabi_fics (from Manchester, UK via NJ, down to DC and back up to Baltimore) getting there just as their bus got in half past noon, and there were their smiling faces and it was a happy reunion! The two of them bought so much happy cheer to be here and with all of us that was infectious.

From Baltimore we went to the hobbity Le Madeleines in Columbia for lunch and happy chatter. Claudia, you remember Le Madeleine’s, right? Actually we talked a lot about politics and I learned some things about Brexit and Rupert Murdock’s machinations thereat (crossing my fingers about the vote today.) A wonderful start to the moot. Then I dropped them at the Greenbelt Marriott to check in, while I went back up to BWI to pick up [ profile] shirebound in from San Diego and [ profile] lovethosehobbit from Salt Lake City and collected my lovely hugs with our reunion and brought them back to the Marriott to check in. lovethosehobbit brought really cute Gandalf & Frodo silhouette bumper stickers for all of us. I need to clean a spot on my car for mine.

Read more... )
Happy birthday to the wonderful [personal profile] hanarobi!!! Here is a rose from beside the Youth Center in Greenbelt to tide you over until your roses start blooming soon.

And some more you things under the cut: )
lavendertook: (sun thru snowy forest)
( Jan. 23rd, 2016 09:11 pm)
The storm is winding down here and we didn't lose power around here--I am grateful. It started here around 1 pm yesterday and should be ending in an hour or two. After I dug out my car this afternoon, I slogged around fording a path around my building and measured the snow in a few spots--it ranged form 13 to 18 inches. We should have a few more inches since then. We got off a little lighter int he NE corner of the Beltway than folks to the west of us. Here's out my living room window:

Read more... )
Pics still from the car on the way to Laramie:

Still in Colorado--here we're approaching the little church at Virginia Dale, CO . . .

. . . and the rocks there, which look a lot like Vedauwoo, for those in the know, and those in the not know, you will see Vedauwoo next post.

Almost across the border . . . )
To my beloved flisties,

Saki & Tuxie, 1/14
May your head be as blissfully licked as Tuxie's is here, or the preferred equivalent.

Snow berries, Roosevelt Center, Greenbelt, 1/14
My love for you is vibrant even in the goddamned snow that can go away any time now. There's your Hallmark Moment from me to you'ses.<3

Also posted at with comment count unavailablecomments
To my beloved flisties,

Saki & Tuxie, 1/14

May your head be as blissfully licked as Tuxie's is here, or the preferred equivalent.

Snow berries, Roosevelt Center, Greenbelt, 1/14

My love for you is vibrant even in the goddamned snow that can go away any time now. There's your Hallmark Moment from me to you'ses.<3
A very happy birthday to the Wee Master's poet true, my dear [ profile] jan_u_wine. I hope it's been a day full of hobbity goodness that sets your muses singing. A rose for you on your day:

First roses in April by Youth Center, Greenbelt, 4-13

Read more... )

And this rose goes to our dear [ profile] addie71:
I wish you a very happy birthday of hobbitish delights and may the Wee Gardner's blessings be on all your spring plantings.
Read more... )
I hope you had a very happy birthday, [personal profile] lbilover! At its close, I bring you squirrel and turtle heavy spam of residents of Greenbelt Lake I took over the past year or so. Also included are a couple more critters who might be denizens of the Woodjinverse. <3


For 22 more pics of Greenbelt Lake residents, come along with me here . . . )
Here are some pics I took around Greenbelt Lake over the last few weeks for two lovely birthday grrls, dear [ profile] romeny and [ profile] ladysnaps!!! I hope it's been a wonderful and relaxing day for you both. <3

A passion flower. They line the path along the formerly known as the sunny western side of the lake and first bloomed fully in June, got cut back at the beginning of July, and came back with another set of blooms in August. They're blooming still. Hardy little buggers. These flowers always look like elegant beauties from outer space to me, with their strange antennae-like stamens and bright fringe. (-:
Follow me here to see more early autumn flora and fauna . . .  )
lavendertook: (frybread power)
( Aug. 28th, 2011 10:35 pm)
Yay--we just got our power back--it was out for 18 hours starting at 4:30 this morning. So all's good here now. I hope all you folks north of us who were more in the eye are OK.

I didn't get to bed until after 5 am when the winds were settling down, and it took me a good hour or so to get to sleep, but I slept through until 2 in the afternoon--I was pretty exhausted. So then I got up and went hunting for ice, tried several places before I was successful, and came back with my quarry an hour later. The power was out in all of Old Greenbelt through to Greenbelt Road, and lots of branches and leaves were down on my drive, but I saw no downed trees. We're not very flooded because, until last week, most of the storms in the area have missed this immediate area, so we haven't had as wet an August as most of the area has and our water table needed all that Irene brought.

The fridge was up to 50 degrees F, so I think I got the perishables iced up just in time as they had several more hours of power out to go. I still have my perishables in the coolers, so I'm going to clean out the fridge tonight before I put them back in. I don't know if the freezer would have really made the 48 hours they say freezers can go, because, though the freezer was full, the ice cream I just checked seemed pretty soft. However, no ice had melted. Still, I don't think the frozen foods in this freezer should be considered safe after 24 hours. So that's good to know at least for next time.

I went out later this afternoon to check on the strays--they were fine. I gave Ostra her massage and pet down. I don't think I mentioned before but she's fully pettable now and shimmies her tail straight up in the air mewing all the while as I approach--it only took 2 years. (-; I can pet Brigit fleetingly, and she's just started mewing to me, but it's going to take some more months, I think, depending on how jealous she gets of Ostra, and if Ostra lets me pet Brigit; Ostra's trying her best to keep us from touching by swatting both of us. Cats. (-; A. keeps saying she's going to try to trap them and bring them to a fosterer, but I'll believe it when it happens--she's been saying it since spring.

Then I picked up some more ice and batteries on the way home, as I sure made use of the battery powered fans and lights last night. So it's good--I'm almost stocked up again for next time. I made use of every bit of prep I did. I'm sure glad I won't need to get more ice tomorrow--the cost of this stuff adds up, and I'm glad I won't have to truck my frozens to L tomorrow, although I'm very grateful for her offer. And I'm glad I didn't have to buy dry ice--I looked up where I could get it locally and that stuff is expensive--I'm not sure it's worth the expense if you don't keep expensive fish and meat in your freezer. Tomorrow I'll walk down to the lake and see how it looks there.

What an exhausting week! Be safe everyone!
The wind and rain are very loud out there right now. I'm just to the east of Washington and I-95, so we're on the line between hurricane and tropical storm as the eye is along the coastline. Hopefully when the eye runs into NJ and NY it will be quite a bit weaker, so you won't have worse than what we're getting here. There have been a dozen aftershocks from the earthquake into today, but I don't think I've felt any of them--poor folks in Mineral and Louisa.

We lost power for a couple of hours this evening, and I got to break out all my battery operated lights, fans, and radio, and kept doing chores without a hitch and threw a couple of catnip parties to keep the kitties calm. I'm happy to say it came back on after 2 hours, and it's been flickering a lot, but still holding. We're coming into the roughest couple of hours we're supposed to get, so I'll be thrilled if the power stays on through to morning, but I wont' be surprised if it goes out again. Not bad so far, Pepco--keep it up!

I debated whether to park my car in the coop supermarket parking lot a little away from trees, but opted to park it here under the trees where I could keep an eye on it, and have a short haul if I need to get out the 12 gallon cooler I got on sale at Kmart yesterday if the power goes out for more than 4 hours. I did pick the spot I think is safest where I think the trees would most likely fall away from it and branches don't look dead and loose above it. And heck, stuff could blow into it in the parking lot and it could flood there, so I feel better at least being able to check on it and I'm counting on it's sturdy roundness to make things roll off my round, blue, steel vessel.

I'm going to put fresh washed sheets on the bed, give the kitties one more nip party, take another shower, and try to go to bed. Aaand the power just did a big flicker, and there was a big bump sound, so I'd better send this when the modem resets. A safe night and tomorrow to all of my flisties still in the storm's path.
lavendertook: pippin sayng unpseakable horror any moment . . . trust me (unspeakable horror)
( Aug. 23rd, 2011 03:36 pm)
Here's info on the seismic zone in VA.

We may have broken the record over one that hit here in 1897 by a tenth of a point. I'm hoping this one counts for this century and not a late one for the last one. They said there we should only get one this big once a century and I'm gonna hold them to it, dammit.
lavendertook: frodo on mount doom ". . . as it is the humidity" (its not so much the apocalypse)
( Aug. 23rd, 2011 01:54 pm)
We just had the hugest earthquake I think we've ever had here. The hugest I've ever been in. Much bigger than the one we had in 2001. Things have fallen all over the place in here. One glass candle stick got smashed, but all else is OK. Kitties are all OK.
lavendertook: cat macro (that ain't right)
( Aug. 17th, 2011 01:19 am)
Hey [ profile] ancalime8301!!!! Check this out!

On our way back from seeing RotK in June, Cali and I saw a strange gray creature running across the road in my headlights. My best guess was it was a hairless fox who maybe lost its fur from mange. Or maybe the love-child of Gollum and the fox that saw the hobbits as they journeyed out of the Shire.

Anyway, I just saw this video on the weather channel site, and this has got to be the very fellow, unless there's more than one of them. It was found near a hospital in our county, and the nearest hospital from where we saw it is about 4 miles away. Obviously, it's trucking its way over the area, trying to find the portal back to its home dimension. Seeing it here, it looks a little chubby to be a fox.

What do ya'll think it is? Weird, huh?

Edit: Just found an article on it with a pic and the video here.
lavendertook: (lavender rain)
( Aug. 1st, 2011 05:33 pm)
We got rain, a big rain storm, like we didn't get all of last month!!!!

*dances in happy circles that scare kitties*

Happy Froday!

OK now, Maryland Area Hobbit Posse,

I wanna make sure I get my ticket for the

FotR EE on Tuesday, June 14th at 7 pm

by this Monday. I think L. is going to join me. The ticket prices seem to have been standardized at all the theaters at $12.50 per show including the Fandango charge. Who is with me? It's showing in a number of theaters in the area. My suggestion is the Snowden Square Theater in Columbia, MD because Columbia is central for DC and Baltimore peeps, and that theater is lots easier to park at and get close to the theater than the one at Columbia Mall that is also showing the EE's. If you have a preference for another theater in the area please say so now.

Who else also wants to get their tickets for

TTT EE Tuesday 21st at 7 pm
RotK EE Tuesday 28th at 7 pm

Let's see if we can get that all settled in this thread.

Also it's mountain laurel blooming time:

Mountain Laurel at Greenbelt Lake, early bloomer 5-2011

This is an early blooming one last week here at Greenbelt Lake. More are blooming this year around the lake than I've seen before. But the really spectacular place to see mountain laurels bloom is down at Calvert Cliffs State Park in southern MD, which is just covered in them. They should be just about peaking now, and I'm planning to drive down there sometime this coming week between tomorrow and Memorial Day. Is anyone interested in coming with me (and sharing in gas expenses if you can), and we could decide on which day would be good? Cali and I went on this weekend last year and it was gorgeous, and it should be even prettier this year. What say you?
My Powah has been restored!!!! *super villain laugh*

Since I don't get back into Maryland until 7 p.m., and went out and treated my cranky-all-day-self to a yummy empanada and enchilada, got a big pack of D batteries, new pillows, and bananas, I didn't get home until 10:30 p.m. I then returned to a wondrously lit (probably in both senses of the word) street. There was much rejoicing. Yay air conditioner and lights and hot water!!!!

When I opened the freezer some stuff was frozen and about a third of the ice cubes were still formed and loose and not melted into the rest of the ice block, so it's left me wondering if any of my frozen foods are salvageable. I called Pepco, which didn't call me when power was restored like they were supposed to, in order to find out when power was restored, since all my clocks were showing different times. The guy was clueless on that info, but upon my being insistent, eventually found it was restored at 3 p.m. If I can trust that, then power's been on for almost 8 hours, so things could have refrozen in that time. Still, there are those unmelted ice cubes. So I'm going to look around some web sites to find out which, if any, things are salvageable. Probably not the $20 bag of shrimp I got free for bringing a prescription into the grocery store.

Project Clean Out the Fridge will have to wait until tomorrow, as there is a bed in an air conditioned room waiting for me and the kitties--yippeeee!!!!
lavendertook: (lavender rain)
( Jul. 26th, 2010 10:54 am)
We had a huge storm yesterday afternoon--looked like hurricane strength winds from the way the trees were swaying and the way the streets look today with downed trees and branches. I've gotten over my very sensible storm phobia that I had for a few years after the tornado here, so it was fun to watch.

My power and telephone at home are still out, and it might not be back for a couple of days. I'm at work right now, and I'll get what email I can from work, but I don't have internet at home right now, so bear with me, please. I can charge my cell phone here at work so I will be reachable by cell tonight.

I have 2 battery operated 12" fans I got earlier this year, which felt like my best investment eva last night. The storm broke the 100 degree weather and 110 heat index we've been having, but it will still go up into the 90's today, so I feel bad for my kitties at home today. My building is shaded cinder block so hopefully, it will stay in the 80's in there. I went out and got ice before going to work this morning in hopes of saving the stuff in my fridge, so crossing my fingers we'll get the power back on this afternoon, but if not, there goes another couple of hundred bucks in ruined groceries down the drain, and I'll need to hit up Home Depot for a bunch more D batteries.
For those of the hobbit posse who are participating in any part of the RotK Symphony Maryland Moot in September, I finally set up a community at

[ profile] mdmoot2010.

so please join it so you can post whatever you need.
lavendertook: (red maple)
( Dec. 30th, 2009 10:54 pm)

Here's a patchwork quilt of bright colors in the narrowing light of twilight, sans sparkle vampires 'cause this be hobbit country, a well garlicked place.
Follow the fading light . . . )

Here are more pics where the reflections double the fun. I probably wouldn't have gotten these if my camera didn't have such a great low light setting. It's so cold here today with high winds, I was cold at work for once, but right now I got a Saki cuddling against me with her head tucked in against my leg, and a Moo is curled up at my feet.
Follow the last burst of color as the light fades . . . )
I have some more thank yous--what fun going to the mailbox has been this holiday season! Thank you to [ profile] melyanna_65 for the fabulous card of our favorite plastic hobbits in their wee santa hats, and the trading cards, and the very cute fic. Thank you to dear [ profile] mews1945 for the pretty sparkly card. And thank you to [ profile] frodosweetstuff for the adorable F/S manip card, which was riches enough, but also the wonderful doll clothes--Bingo and Sam are so delighted--and the gaydar--about time I had some, too. (-; Gosh!

Back to the lake--I want to get us to the end of this set of fall pics this week before the year ends. I walked around the lake today since this weekend's rain washed most of the snow away. There's just so much green underbrush still not willing to relinquish this Rainy Year of Yay for Green Things. There are more kinds and shades of lush, gleeful moss covering the trees sending up luxuriant spikes of spores. And the holly trees are more full of berries than I remember seeing any year before--folk wisdom says that means we can expect lots more snow and cold this winter. At the end of it, I'm still hoping for an early, sunny, and riotous spring in reward for this dark, dreary year. But back to 2 months ago:

Here's a sweet gum tree cascading over the lake. I think that's willow oak still green in the foreground. At this point, that camera was picking up more light than my eyes were in the dusk.
And another pic of the cascading sweet gum . . .  )
lavendertook: (Chanukah)
( Dec. 11th, 2009 11:04 pm)
Happy Chanukah!!!

I skipped over photoing the southwest branch this round, and now we're on the south side heading east and back to where we started. The last of the afternoon sun lights the trees on this part of the path. There are some houses off to the right side, so it's not quite as secluded as the view looking toward the lake suggests.
Along the last stretch of the walk . . . )

The treetops, together with their reflection in the lake, look like fiery lips, the setting sun kissing the tops of the trees goodnight. We're looking from the southwest corner of the lake back toward the stone landings. That red ball in the middle is the sugar maple I showed you a few entries before. It don't need no stinking sun touching it to shine brightly. I only wish we had some blue sky in this shot.
Come see the trees the sun has kissed . . . )

Here's the view walking south along the western bank of Greenbelt Lake, looking eastward as the sun heads towards the horizon. On a windy day, this stretch picks up nice breezes and scents off the lake with an ocean flavor. The water mallows and passion flowers that grow along the bank here come to full bloom in August and September, and I'll show you some pics I took of those as the winter deepens. On the down side, you can hear a fairly constant buzz of traffic from the intersection of the interstate and the parkway nearby.
Looking back toward where we started . . . )

Just some more golden otherworldly views of sunset in autumn on Greenbelt Lake. Here we're looking back at the stone landings we passed as we now look toward the east end of the lake.
Follow if you will . . . )

The composition is kind of boring here, but I love the colors, since few of my shots managed to line up clear sky behind the trees. A good clear blue sky really sets off the fall colors so much more vividly, especially with the deeper reflection.
And more . . . )
lavendertook: (autumn balcony)
( Dec. 3rd, 2009 10:49 pm)

So as we continue on around to the west side of the lake, the sun that emerges from under the cloud bank is not the same one that descended therein. And little does this couple here know that, like us, they are now in the universe of Maxfield Parrish.
Take the hidden paths that run . . . )
lavendertook: milli on couch curled and looking up (Milli looking up)
( Dec. 2nd, 2009 10:42 pm)
I'm almost over this lingering, not quite ready for prime time flu thing. Still a little congested, but I went ahead and did my voice post for [ profile] read_lotr_aloud here and here. And I got a lovely Paris post card from Frodo, Sam, and [ profile] frodosweetstuff--thank you, you three! In other health news, I'm crossing my fingers that I just had menopause when I went through constant hot flashes the other week, because so far so good about period not showing up this week. If that was it, that would be so awesome--somehow I don't think I'll be let off that easy, though. On to the pretty trees . . .

Remember, you can click on any pic for embiggenment. Here's your sugar maple straight up, the colors all a memory now.
And yet more pretty colors . . . )

Just more pics of that red maple. BTW, all these pics are still from one day in October, over a month ago--the leaves are pretty much gone here now.
And here . . . )
lavendertook: (golden wood)
( Nov. 29th, 2009 10:32 pm)

We're on the hill at the northwest corner of the lake. In the foreground is a sugar maple, and in the background is what I believe is a red maple, also known as a swamp maple. The swamp maples make some lovely cascades over the lake further along, as in this pic I took at the lake 2 years ago. These maples skip over the brightest fluorescent orange of sugar maples and go from bright yellow to a blood red you don't see on the sugars. I wish there was blue sky here, rather than clouds behind the leaves for a better contrast.
Follow the falling leaves . . .  )
lavendertook: (red water)
( Nov. 28th, 2009 10:38 pm)
I've been sick since Thursday, so have been turning in earlier, without posting. This thing keeps coming back since mid-September--I think this is the third round. There's no fever, so it's pretty mild--mostly a sinus infection that moves about and some intestinal involvement, and general weakness--just enough to make you feel unwell.

So I got to be home Thursday and was looking forward to a quiet day with the cats, doing some chores, and enjoying their excitement over turkey, but all I got done was cooking turkey and stuffing and doing laundry, and feeling cross about it because I felt lousy. Last night, I went straight to bed after work and dinner and slept 13 hours. The sun miraculously, actually came out today, but I didn't get to go out in it much due to feeling ucky. However, the nice part of the leaves dropping and the sun on a lower path is that my apartment gets a lot brighter and the kitties have sunlight to bath in--much more needed in the winter.

The colors are a little less bright when the sun goes behind the clouds, and it's getting pretty low in the sky at this point. These shots are taken from stone landings along the bank toward the northwest corner of the lake.
Floating a little further . . . )
lavendertook: (autumn)
( Nov. 25th, 2009 10:57 pm)

Ah, sugar . . . Sugar maple, brightest of them all! It's what makes New England and Ontario especially so grand in the fall. I'm not sure how far up north in Canada they do a good display--please chime in, Canadian flistmates. We don't have so many here, and there are fewer south of here. They kept a long display here this year, though many of them got rained off by their peak, and I guess most of us humans got rained in from seeing them. I love them pre-peak best, though, when they still have a lot of green to contrast with the flames.
You got me wanting you . . .  )

These are more pics across Greenbelt Lake and down the southwest branch I took a month ago. See those dark green trees with a touch of burgundy in the center here? Those are Bradford pear trees. And they still had some pretty leaves hanging on this weekend--I took some pics I'll show you later.

Let me just write a little encomium to Bradford pears, because I've come to love this tree a lot. In the spring it's one of the first trees to flower with clouds of white blooms. It's used as a total utility tree around here and planted all along the highways, so there are stretches along the Beltway that are just gorgeous in the spring. One of my spring observances is to make it a point to drive through the Ivy Lane Office Park and the Greenway Shopping Center parking lot--names that ring full of the romance of spring, right?--they are so full of these trees. Last year, while I was in the parking lot, some flurries fell while their blooms were already out, and it was wonderful to see white petals and snowflakes falling together.
More nattering about trees and more pics . . . )

The focus isn't very sharp in these pics, but the colors are so vivid I figured I'd show them to you anyway. We started on the east end of the lake, and we're going along the northern shore and are nearing the west end now. Across the lake from this picnic shelter you can sort of make out the opening of the south branch or fork of the lake.
Following the kaleidoscope on the southern shore . . . )

Happy Birthday to [personal profile] mererid who loves birds and the sea. We're about half way down to the far end of the lake. The park around the lake is called Buddy Attick Park--kind of a hobbity name, don't you think? This has been a stressful week, so I'm just going to float along with these Canada geese here. And I'm having a mug of almond milk, with a shot of amaretto and rose water as a thunder storm passes over outside, and Saki is lounging on the ottoman in front of me keeping guard. The rain's picked up, falling louder on the windows, so Tuxie has just dashed into his bunker behind the futon for safety, and Moo just wandered by wondering if she should be worried.
A time to reflect . . . )

Looking up to the tree tops and seeing blue sky between brightly colored leaves is one of the joys of life.
Bright stuff by the water. . . )

From the path, we're looking at a little peninsula that juts out from the place we started round the lake. The bright sea green color on the water is a layer of algae covering this shallow, still part of the lake.
And a little further . . . )
lavendertook: (golden lake)
( Nov. 14th, 2009 12:06 am)

Now we're on the path going around the lake and you can catch a glimpse of it through these trees. There's a wider opening where you can see more of the lake, but I like looking out between these ivy-covered trunks. Ivy and moss always add a more primal and mystical touch to the setting, as does the late afternoon sun. There's undoubtedly some hobbits hiding among the undergrowth, watching for Elves to pass by.
Along the path . . .  )

I love the little glimpses of reflected blue sky at the bottom of this picture, like sapphires gleaming from the bottom of the pool (or Feanorian lamps, or Frodolijah blue eyes.) Do click on it to see it better. This is still the turtle pond right where the path we came up merges with the path that circles the lake.
More fire on the water . . . AND DUCKS! )


lavendertook: (Default)


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