Arlington Virginia

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Today I am wandering around Arlington, Virginia. Architecturally it seems to be a hodge-podge of various architectural styles and inclinations making for an eclectic mix that is rather unique in my opinion. I do love all of the tulips in bloom, with the crisp chill still present in the air, the tulips will be in bloom for quite a while which is a boon to the residents of Arlington because who doesn’t love tulips?

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So far I have visited Reston, Herndon, Chantilly; driven through Fairfax and now walking around Arlington. All of these areas are charming in their own way; everything seems so new compared to Boston or even New York City. I get the sense of large areas and spread out vistas as opposed to everything built upwards due to limited space as we have up north in the two cities that I know best.

These visits down to Virginia has given me the chance to get to know a part of the States that I had previously sped through on my way further south, it was always a point on a map, now I am getting familiar with this point and it is rather pleasant.

Happy Earth Day everyone!

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#Global Selfie Earth Day

What a production to get my tweet out there to NASA lol. Jack is with us and I don’t like to leave him in the hotel room, I also figured that Jack should be in my GlobalSelfie, because he lives on Earth and he loves our planet as much as I do. So I took him downstairs with me to the Business Center to print out the PDF for NASA tweet, he was a little squirrelly on my lap because he had to do to the bathroom, but since it was drizzling outside, I wasn’t going outside first to get wet and then come back in to print the paper and then have to go back out into the rain. Jack settled down after a bit and I got the printout and outside we went. Jack did his business and then I picked him up where he got squirrelly again, my thumb grazed the button and poof,poof, poof, three shots and I said to Jack “well that is going to have to do it, because we aren’t getting anything better looking than this, we were getting pretty bedraggled by this point.

I went through all of this because my first attempt came out very nicely, but I didn’t have access to a printer so my tweet doesn’t show any coordinates, a pretty picture without the details, so useless.

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Earth Day is a special day for you, me and everyone in this world. :D

Springtime in Virginia

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I spent a good part of the day taking in the beauty of various neighborhoods in the surrounding Herndon and Reston areas of Northern Virginia with my husband and Jack; getting an idea of the lay of the land. I have to say that the landscaping, everywhere we visited, was top notch, everything well groomed and immaculately pruned and maintained, the gardener in me was greatly impressed.

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However, as much as I love the blooms and the beauty of it all, as we were walking outside and I noticed petals and pollen swarming around our heads, I couldn’t help but think of the latest headline that I saw with the word vortex in it; the upcoming pollen vortex. Since we had been assaulted by those nasty polar vortices, all the new growth, instead of appearing in a staggered manner as usual, was going to all appear, simultaneously and thus the pollen vortex, all pollen at all times. I am not sure if I am being psychosomatic but my nose is feeling a little stuffed at the moment. :D

#Global Selfie Earth Day

laurieanichols:

It sounds like fun so why not?

Originally posted on The Laughing Housewife:

I subscribe to NASA’s emails and I received one the other day that I’d like to share.  Tomorrow, they want everyone to take a selfie.

Are you up for it?  If you don’t do Twitter, Facebook, etc., post it to your blog then leave a link here in the comments and I’ll come check you out.

Here’s their blurb:

NASA invites you — and everyone else on the planet — to take part in a worldwide celebration of Earth Day this year with the agency’s #GlobalSelfie event.

The year 2014 is a big one for NASA Earth science. Five NASA missions designed to gather critical data about our home planet are launching to space this year. NASA is marking this big year for Earth science with a campaign called Earth Right Now, and as part of this campaign the agency is asking for your help this Earth Day, April 22.

While…

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Happy Easter everyone!

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I am wishing everyone a very Happy Easter! It is late and I am tired from driving all the way from my sister’s house in Westchester, New York down to Herndon Virginia. We had a fantastic meal of steamed artichokes with my mother’s vinaigrette followed by butterflied leg of lamb on the barbecue, roasted fingerling potatoes, flageolets simmered in chicken broth, after having had shallots and garlic sautéed with diced prosciutto to give the beans added flavor, finally we got to the salad and then it was the piece de resistance, le Saint Honore:

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My mother, my sister and my brother-in-law, all of them, outdid themselves with this fine feast. But besides the food, our favorite part of visiting is to spend time with the little ones; my niece and nephew. Their eyes lit up at dessert time; the cake and the Lindt chocolates were a lot more fun to eat then the beans, at least in my opinion.

I am off to bed.

Spring has erupted in Astoria

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Today was a glorious day in Astoria, we left Blandford this morning at a slightly chilly 50 degrees and arrived to 70 degrees and vibrant sunshine. It was a delight to see most off the trees sprouting buds and flowers and to see daffodils standing proudly tall and regal along with their partners, the hyacinths. I am quite proud of the two shots that I took of the immense magnolia tree right before Astoria Park; the magnolia cups are, I think, the most spectacular sign of spring; stunning in its glory and so delicate in its fleeting life cycle.

I included pictures of my mother’s front yard with her daffodils, hyacinths nestled around the dogwood tree that we gave her years ago and planted for her. What I like about my mother’s garden is that she has two levels, making for a dynamic visual, especially in pictures.

Jack felt the excitement of spring today; he hurried to the park and eagerly romped and scamped through the mounds of dead leaves trying to elicit some response from the plump squirrels sitting comfortably above his head, chewing on nuts.

I am lucky, I get to experience spring for a long time, my spring in Blandford won’t express its beauty until much later, mid May, I think from the look of the upcoming weather forecast. I’m fine with that because having spring twice is never a bad thing, nature’s rebirth is always welcome no matter how many times you may witness it.

An Apology

laurieanichols:

If anyone if a follower, the poor dear accidentally deleted all of her material. Here is a shout out to see if any can offer support and help. :)

Originally posted on Look Into Your Heart & Write:

Hello.

Tonight I have accidentally deleted my blog. My stats, followers; everything. If any one use to follow the mathildawainwright.wordpress.com blog, please follow again as I will be trying to repost everything I wrote. I’m so gutted that everything is disappeared. Please follow for poetry and writing.

Thank you.

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Writer’s block?

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Today is not about having writer’s block; it is about getting out from under the cloud of depression. Yesterday was a tough day; driving round trip to Boston and then dealing with my husband’s bout of food poisoning, laundry and remaking the bed, worrying about my husband’s well-being because whatever he ate while he was gone, made him very ill. I suppose between the physical fatigue and the emotional and mental worry, I woke up in a blanket of depression which is more often then not lying right beneath the surface.

I know that I am prone to depression chemically in my brain, it goes hand in hand with eating disorders, according to the literature, the experts aren’t sure which came first, the depression or the eating disorder; but there is a strong link between the two. I fight very hard not to let it overwhelm me and I stick to what works for me even when it might not be working at that very instance; I eat as healthy as possible, I walk as much as possible, I write every day, I take care of Jack, taking care of others is very important in keeping depression at bay, at least for me; it gives me a sense of purpose and it makes me feel good when I see my charges happy, well fed and thriving. I engage in my passions; cooking and baking as often as possible, but still sometimes all of that is not enough to keep the intense heavy fog from infiltrating my emotional recesses and engulfing me with its suffocating heaviness. Writing about it today is helping even if it isn’t going away right this second, it is best to get all of this off my chest rather than let it fester, where it can do unseen damage by lingering. My title of writer’s block was really about finding the courage to write about how badly I feel and sharing it, rather then not having anything to write about, that might often be the case with what one thinks of writer’s block.

Tomorrow is a new day and I am sure that tonight I will sleep much better. I foresee a brighter day and a brighter outlook.

Further proof that spring is coming

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Even though we had a slight setback with the crazy snow of yesterday and I was worried about my delicate plants, the emergence this morning of my teeny, tiny daffodils put a smile on my face. They are practically microscopic, I know, but they are adorable and they are mine. I couldn’t help but include the latest picture of my hibiscus, looking naked yet still blooming. I can’t get over that; despite being cold all winter long, evidenced by the loss of most of its leaves, my hibiscus still found the energy to produce blooms throughout these long winter months. I can’t figure it out, I didn’t feed it anything whatsoever, all I did was water on a weekly basis. But I don’t need to understand it, all I need is to embrace it as the gift that it is.

Maman not happy :(

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I woke up this morning to this; snow covered driveway, lawn and garden beds. After all that cleanup, not only did I tidy up the backyard, but I had swept away all of the protective cover that was shielding my delicate new growth. I am not very happy with our Northeast weather today. Spring is always a delicate time for flowering plants, after the especially long and harsh winter that we have had, they don’t need any more stress, the poor babies.

I am hoping that in the next few days, when the temperatures come back up to more acceptable levels, any damage may be reversed. New growth can easily die from frost bite and I am hoping that this is not the case with my nascent daffodils. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

On another note, after breakfast this morning, I had my usual oatmeal, I was looking through my e-mails and reading my latest installment from Paris Breakfasts; it is a daily newsletter that brings a little bit of Paris to my doorstep everyday. Today for some reason, reading through Paris Breakfasts gave me a hankering for a very common French sandwich, a sandwich of butter and saucisson on a baguette, saucisson being dry salami or cured sausage, it sounds so simple, but trust me the marriage between cold butter and the salty cured saucisson surrounded by the crusty and delicious French bread is beyond just good, it is mouthwateringly great. This hankering would not go away so I made do with what I had in the kitchen. I took my rye bread, spread some butter and luckily I still had some prosciutto, threw that on top of the butter and ta da, I had my sandwich, not the exact replica, but it did what my tastebuds wanted, satisfied that hankering for a sliver of France. It was good eats.

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