Apr. 17th, 2016 11:48 pm
owlmoose: A bright blue butterfly (butterfly)
In DC visiting T's family for a long weekend (arrived late Friday, leaving early Tuesday). We missed the cherry blossoms, but it's still pretty. And the azaleas in the National Arboretum are starting to bloom. I posted a selection of pictures to Tumblr, including the azaleas.

We'd thought about the zoo tomorrow, but my knee is not cooperating, so we're going to visit some nice non-hilly museums instead. Probably the National Gallery of Art, where we've never been, and the Renwick Gallery, which has a Maya Lin exhibit. Should be interesting.
owlmoose: A photo of a Highway 1 roadsign, with the California Coast in the background (california - sign)
Today’s adventure was a trip to the Marin Headlands. We walked down to the Point Bonita lighthouse, where despite many drives around that area I had never been -- its hours are very limited (only Saturday, Sunday, and Monday afternoons), and T had always warned me off visiting because the hike involved a steep loose-gravel trail and a rickety bridge, two of my least favorite things thanks to my fear of heights. But fortunately, his information was out of date, because they rebuilt the bridge in 2012, and presumably paved the steepest parts of the trail at the same time. So I found it perfectly accessible for me, and it was worth it.

Point Bonita the oldest lighthouse on the West Coast of the US, and the last in California to become automated. Because it’s still in use, we weren’t able to go up and see the light or the lens, but there were nice exhibits on the history of the lighthouse and the shipping lanes past and present. And the views were excellent. We also saw seals and hawks! So I'm glad I was able to get there.

I posted a few pictures on Tumblr. Nothing special (and no wildlife, alas -- they were too small and far away), but some nice views of the ocean and the Golden Gate Bridge.
owlmoose: (otter)
Unfortunately, we had to postpone most of our staycation adventures due to illness, but we did make it down to the Monterey Bay Aquarium today. :) I put a selection of pictures up on my Tumblr -- go for otters, octopi, cuttlefish, and other critters! As usual, it's likely that T's pictures will be better than mine, so if he gets around to processing, I'll share those, too.

We also took a behind the scenes tour of the aquarium! It was presented as an otter tour, but it was really more of a shortened version of the usual backstage tour with a particular focus on talking about the otter facilities -- we didn't actually get to see any off-exhibit otters, or any of the spaces they use, although we did get a quick look at live video feed of the mama otter who's currently fostering two pups. (They keep baby otters out of the public eye most of the time, because they don't want the pups to get too used to humans; it causes problems when they get released back into the wild. The one we saw earlier this year was an exception, because it was the first pup that adult had ever fostered, so they didn't expect him to be releasable anyway.)

(PS: if you like baby otter pictures, you should click that link. I can't remember whether I shared here before, and I suspect it is relevant to many of your interests. ;) )

Anyway, so it was interesting, but not quite as otter-tastic as we had hoped for. However, we did pay several visits to the otters on exhibit, and also saw at least three gamboling in Monterey Bay, so it was worth it.


Dec. 29th, 2013 02:15 pm
owlmoose: (cats - teacup)
Last full day in DC. We had a quiet Christmas day. Then we went out the next three days, visiting the Pentagon Memorial (mostly because the architect was a classmate of mine at Bryn Mawr), the Library of Congress (at last!), the Udvar-Hazy Center of the National Air and Space Museum (which is the home of the Space Shuttle Discovery), and Eastern Market in Capitol Hill.

Today was brunch and now football -- my sister-in-law's boyfriend is a big Packers fan, and they have a shot at the playoffs, so no way he is going to miss this game. So we are all in the TV room, hanging out by the fireplace and the Christmas tree, the early games on TV, nice and cozy against the rain outside. It's been a good visit. But I'm definitely glad to be getting home tomorrow.

Quiet Day

Nov. 30th, 2013 01:03 am
owlmoose: a picture of the Golden Gate Bridge, shrouded by fog (golden gate bridge)
Today, we went to the beach. Just for an hour, just for a walk, but it was quite nice -- even if it did get completely socked in by fog by the time we left.

I also had grand plans to have some fic to post today, but alas, I didn't get it together quite in time. Tomorrow, I hope.


Nov. 23rd, 2012 11:41 pm
owlmoose: (cats - teacup)
Too much food, too much sangria, too much fun. Dinner was awesome but I think I need to crash -- time to curl up in bed with more water and my iPad.

But first, the friands, which were delicious and received with much acclaim. Have some food porn. )

Good night Internets, I will see you on the morrow.

Fish story

Nov. 21st, 2012 12:33 am
owlmoose: A photo of a Highway 1 roadsign, with the California Coast in the background (california - sign)
Today, we went to Monterey Bay Aquarium to see the fishies.

Selected fishies beneath the cut. )

Sadly, the sea otter exhibit is under renovation until March, although we did get a look at some furry little heads swimming around in the kelp beds, plus I also saw a sea lion. They were pretty far away, but aquarium staff were handing out binoculars on the outside deck, so instead of just squinting and asking ourselves if that was really an otter or just our imagination, we could tell that they were actual real sea otters, swimming around on their backs and diving underwater. Still, it's not the same as seeing them right there, up close and personal. Guess we'll have to go back sometime, oh dear.
owlmoose: Picture of a beanie moose and a small brown owl (owlmoose)
Because I'm sure you've all been waiting with bated breath, here are pictures of the new dishwasher and microwave:

Photos behind the cut. )

- hm, embedded image isn't working, but you should be able to see it here.

The installation went remarkably smoothly -- the guys who came for the dishwasher were quick and efficient, and then they helped R get the microwave in place, which was really helpful. I'm sure he could have done it on his own, but it was much, much easier with more people around, especially someone who was able to lift a 70-pound microwave as if it were nothing (I swear I saw him toss it in the air a little bit as he was carrying it across the kitchen).

We haven't really used either appliance yet, but the various test cycles seemed to work and I'm looking forward to trying them out. The dishwasher, especially -- we selected this particular model because it's reported to be quiet, and it will be nice to be able to do things like watch TV and have a normal conversation when it's running.
owlmoose: Picture of a beanie moose and a small brown owl (owlmoose)
In lieu of real content, since I just got home from chorus and now I must sleep. Or edit. Or edit, then sleep.

Take a picture of you in your current state, no changing your clothes or quickly putting on makeup. NO PHOTOSHOP. Show your f-list the real you!

Behind zee cut. )

This sweater is actually purple; I tried taking a picture in better light that would show the color better, but it just wasn't happening. But fuzzy and dark as it is, I kind of like this snap.

Tomorrow off work, hooray!
owlmoose: (ffx2 - crimson squad)
I am told that it is bad form to brag about cute new shoes without posting a picture. So here, have a picture. And also another picture. They are still breaking in, but pretty comfortable, especially after I'd worn them a little while. I am, if not precisely in love, at least very deeply in like.

22. Tell us about one scene between your characters that you've never written or told anyone about before! Serious or not.

Like most writers, I expect, I have scenes that come to me in snippets that I don't get around to writing down: sometimes just not right away, sometimes never. Maybe they won't make a complete story on their own; maybe they represent a direction for a character or story that I eventually decided not to take; sometimes I just plain forget. In that spirit, here is a moment that I've played with from time to time that's never really fit into any particular continuity; it might fit into the bleaker version of the post-Confessional universe that culminated in the story Painkiller, but usually these days I prefer to take a less depressing tack when I write a Paine/Nooj future. Still, I do like the idea that this captures something about the CS4 and what their relationship could be. Note that this is a fragment, not terribly polished, and I make no promises that it won't work its way into a story someday.

Sometimes it's better not to know the truth. )

And... I never really figured out where to take the idea from there. I'm not even sure it has anywhere to go. But this exact conversation has come into my mind several different times over the years, and it feels good to finally get it down into type.

30 Days of Writing: Complete list of questions
owlmoose: a picture of the Golden Gate Bridge, shrouded by fog (golden gate bridge)
It's the final day of my second four-day weekend in a row. I just can't tell you how happy I was to be able to arrange this. Today is my official work holiday, but since T got Friday off I took an extra vacation day, and it's been more than worth it.

Friday: By Air )

Saturday: By Sea )

Sunday: By Land )

Unless you go a fair bit out of the way (sometimes in bad traffic it's actually faster to go the long way around, but we almost never do), a drive from San Francisco to Santa Rosa necessitates a trip across the Golden Gate Bridge, which means that I've been over it easily hundreds of times. And that's how an amazing national landmark becomes commonplace. So I sometimes like to take a step back and admire it, look at it the way a tourist might (or a photographer). It's such a beautiful and dramatic piece of architecture, even more so than its cousin across the way, and I try not to take it for granted.

So now the long weekend draws to a close with a day where I have not much at all planned, which given how busy the rest of the days have been is probably a good thing.


May. 23rd, 2010 02:36 pm
owlmoose: (Default)

Cafe au lait with sugar cubes. Now that is what I call breakfast.

Posted via


May. 6th, 2009 07:04 am
owlmoose: (Default)
Thanks to the wonders of jetlag, I finished my gallery of Rome pictures this morning.

I fully intend to finish writing up the trip, with pictures included, but if you just want to browse the highlights, now you can!
owlmoose: (Default)
For as long as I can remember, I have enjoyed baking. Cooking can be fun too, but I'm less into it; it takes a lot more creativity, flexibility, and seat-of-pants experimentation than I'm comfortable with to be a truly good cook. Baking is more about following a recipe, executing methods and procedures just the right way every time, and that works much better for me. Plus, you have delicious baked goods afterwards, so it's really a win-win situation.

T, on the other hand, is much more of a cook than a baker. So I was surprised when, back in August, he decided to bake a pie for an apple pie tasting at his work. It was an experiment -- a "skillet apple pie", which had no bottom crust, and was topped with something more like biscuit dough, and it was tasty (especially the apple filling, which I liked a lot)... but it wasn't what people expected out of a pie, and it came in last.

So T went on a mission: learn to bake, and to do it well. First, he bought a cookbook. Then, after spending about a week reading it, he settled on his first attempt: devil's food cake. With chocolate ganache frosting and caramel sauce. On reflection, this was probably a bit ambitious -- preparing three separate recipes (the layer cake, the caramel, and the frosting) and assembling the lot ended up taking a lot longer than he anticipated, and he was up past 3am.

But it was worth it. )

His co-workers loved it, I loved it, even my co-workers loved it. (I got some good effort out of the student workers that day, I can tell you.) Flush with his success, he continued on to other things: gingerbread, pumpkin pie (twice, which is fine with me because I looooove pumpkin pie), and a fromage blanc Bavarian, aka cheesecake:

From Baking

And that's only the things I have pictures of -- he's also made brownies, pot de creme (a baked chocolate pudding), and right now a chocolate mousse souffle cake is setting up in our fridge.

It's been interesting to watch him at this obsession. Although we're slowly running out of room for cookware, and I'm about done with weekly trips to Bed, Bath, & Beyond. And if he keeps baking at this rate, he might have to start rolling me down the stairs. Fortunately, he takes most of his wares to work, where they are well appreciated. I've made a couple things from the book, too, but I was not super-enamored of the chocolate chip cookie recipe -- I like my cookies thick and soft, and these are thin and chewy (although the oatmeal-chocolate-orange zest combination of flavors is definitely tasty). But today, I gave a Cook's Illustrated cookie recipe a try, and was most satisfied with the results (the secret? melting the butter first). So I'm not ready to cede the title of family baker to T yet.
owlmoose: (Default)
A few moons ago, on the journaling meme, [ profile] friede asked me to discuss a favorite piece of clothing. I've known from the very beginning what I was going to write about, but I really wanted to illustrate the essay, and I didn't really have a good opportunity to take the photos until now. So here goes.

(BTW, this is the last post in the series prompted by that meme, but the door remains open. If anyone else has any suggestions or requests, feel free to post them in the comments to the post above.)

Fashion sense is one of those things that women are supposed to be born with but which I've had to learn over the years. Only now do I finally feel like I have a sense of my own personal style, of what looks good on me and what I like. But one thing I discovered many years ago, and that's my affinity for jackets -- specifically, for tailored blazers.

Much more behind the cut, plus pictures! )
owlmoose: (Default)
I promise, this will be my last otter-related post for awhile.

But how can I resist? They're so darn cute! )

Thank you all for indulging me in this brief obsession. ;) I will get back to posting about other things now.
owlmoose: (Default)
At last, I present to you: San Diego animal pictures! (Otters next time, I promise.)

Lions, cheetahs, giraffes, seal pups... )

For the whole album, including many pictures of food, click here.

Big cats

Apr. 1st, 2008 12:55 am
owlmoose: (Default)
It is taking me forever to go through these pictures, so here, have a preview:

Full size is here. Warning: large picture is large.

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