Tag Archives: photos

Cwm Idwal in the Ogwen Valley

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From the cultivated beauty of Bodnant Garden, we drove on to the wild beauty of Cwm Idwal…IMG_4450IMG_4452IMG_4458A stone path guided our steps…IMG_4466IMG_4465IMG_4488IMG_4494

…to a lake:

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It was a bit windy…

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Actually, it was CRAZY windy!
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Brooding Heathcliff moment.

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No brooding here. This is the face of a man in his element.

 

Weekend Snapshots 47

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Friday

My daughter and three of her friends are playing in a quartet together. On Friday after work I went to pick them up and got to listen to the last half hour of practice…

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We met up with my 15 year old and his friend at a restaurant for dinner. IMG_9178As the kids piled into my trusty old minivan after dinner to head to the movie theater, I said, “Hey, please turn a blind eye to the mess inside. Just ignore it all! Pretend you don’t see a thing…”

As one of the kids gingerly stepped over the mess to take his seat, he deadpanned: “Like…the balloon punching bag, a Holy Bible, a warm six-pack of Gatorade, aaaaaaaand the brochure on chameleons?”

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I’m not messy, really – I’m prepared. We could probably ride out the apocalypse in that minivan. We have reading materials. We have entertainment. And there’s probably enough food in crumbs and half-empty bottles of various liquids to keep us going for months. And if we happened to have chameleons during the apocalypse – we’d know exactly how to take care of them.

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Saturday

The next morning I did a baby photo shoot. My camera stopped working halfway through, so I had to finish up with my camera phone. I’m planning to post more photos later, but here’s a sneak peak:

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I had to dash home to get this girl to her soccer game:

Later that evening we met up with the quartet girls and their mothers and headed over to Staunton, Virginia to hear the Waynesboro Symphony Orchestra.

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Elgar’s Concerto for Cello and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4 were the musical highlights of the evening. The girls loved hearing their violin/quartet teacher play the violin.

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Happy Easter

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The five of us sang at four different Easter services at two different churches this morning. IMG_9088The Easter Bunny visited our house while we were at church and left an obscene amount of candy hidden around the yard.

IMG_3171IMG_3178IMG_3186IMG_3191IMG_3198IMG_3201IMG_3209IMG_3216IMG_3220IMG_3222IMG_3228Those beatific smiles disappeared as soon as the Easter Bunny’s mean, mean wife immediately confiscated aaaaaaaallll the candy and hid it away.

And then the poor Easter Bunny, who, after all that egg-hiding,  would have much rather sat on a couch reading a scholarly tome, tried to change the air filters. He ended up having to get four stitches on a very important finger…

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Postcards from Princeton

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My sister and me – and my photobomber niece!

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Hanging out with an Innkeeper and Joseph.

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Silent Night

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My niece and her dad.

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Nana’s famous Christmas cookies, Round 1

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Triplets and Honorary Triplet.

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Girl cousins!

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Oldest cousins

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At the top of every little girl’s wish list – a creepy elephant mask?!

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Nana’s famous Christmas cookies, Round 2

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Daisy, my new BFF.

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Tea for two

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Littlest cousins

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Wheeeeeeeee!

 

Weekend Snapshots 43, or: The Ice Queen Cometh

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My husband went to Scotland last weekend to give a talk at University of Edinburgh. He got to spend some time with our niece at her new school and he’s been able to check in on his parents in England. He’s also carved out a little time to do some hiking. It seems like he’s been gone for an eternity, a feeling that is only exacerbated when he texts me photos like these:img_7081

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…complete with breathless, rapturous captions about the wondrous beauty he is experiencing.

We’re having much smaller-scale adventures at home. For example, on Friday my daughter spotted this in our backyard:

img_1683We think that rather fearsome bird perched on the run-in shed is a Red-tailed Hawk. I had never fully appreciated what the phrase “sitting duck” meant until recently. My daughter did not at all appreciate my observation that this would make Reason #927 for not getting the pet ducks she’s been pining for…

On Saturday I made shakshuka for the first time, which – miracle of miracles – everyone liked:

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Oh, shakshuka, where have you been all my life?!

I adapted this New York Times recipe for the dish, substituting in ingredients we happened to have. (Sautée an onion, a bell pepper, and a few cloves of garlic. Season with salt, pepper, cumin, paprika, and cayenne. Add a carton of diced plum tomatoes and stir until sauce thickens. Stir in about a cup of crumbled feta or goat cheese. [I used a little of both]. Crack eggs over the mixture and bake in 375 degree oven for about ten minutes). The kids ate it all up with slices of buttery toasted sourdough bread.

On Sunday morning I picked up my daughter from a sleepover and we headed out to the field for her brother’s game. His team won by a large margin, but in the final moments they failed spectacularly at one attempt to get the ball into the net. A player kicked it from only about a foot away, but instead of going in, the ball got a little too much loft and improbably landed on top of the net.

How in the world did they not get that into the net?” my daughter spluttered, clutching her head in disbelief, “Grandma could have gotten it in!”

“Grandma’s Grandma could have gotten the ball in! I mean…”

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She plumbed the depths of her wildest imagination to come up with an even more preposterous scenario: “I mean…YOU could have gotten it in.”

end of the middleTears of remorse sprung to her eyes as soon she saw the shocked expression on my face. Of course, they immediately turned into tiny little icicles…

Brrrrrr, that was cold, little Ice Queen, but I still love you anyway.

img_7072I’ll probably forgive Mr. Scotland too one day…

Mid-week Snaps

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Pre-season training camp for soccer has started…After three hours of practice between the two of them, the kids go straight from the car to the backyard to practice some more.

IMG_0740IMG_0741Beta Bridge today…IMG_0743A brand new mural on the Corner, inspired by Rita Dove’s poem “Testimonial”:IMG_0745IMG_0747

We wandered around town for three hours this evening waiting for one kid or the other to be finished with soccer…In one of the two grocery stores we visited to kill time, we were in the checkout line when I heard my daughter ask, “Can we get this?” Without even looking, I reflexively said, “No” as I always do. But when I turned around and spotted what she had in her hand, I said: “I mean, YES!” They could have tasted like dirt, and we still would have had to buy these:IMG_0758And even though the only banana-flavored things I usually like are actual bananas, these tictacs are weirdly delicious!IMG_0760IMG_0755