Tuesday, May 29, 2012

In case you're wondering...

The real-life name of Posh Place is BeanTree Learning. Muffin Man has gone there for over six years, and will be there again for a few weeks this Summer. I can't say enough good things about their pre-school, pre-K, and Kindergarten programs. And their after-school program is also terrific, with time for homework and reading, as well as playing outside and messing about with Lego.

Six and a half years later, I could have written this post yesterday. They take child care seriously.

If you live in Loudoun or western Fairfax and you're looking for a daycare program for your child, infant through 5th grade, you can not do better than BeanTree Learning. But don't take MY word for it:

Portrait of a happy camper
Muffin Man gives it two BAWKS up.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

A post to make you jealous about my lunch

Yesterday, when I got home from work, Mr. Spock and Muffin Man were in the kitchen and the house smelled terrific.

"What are you making?" I asked.

"MEATBALLS!" MM said quite proudly. "Did you know that meatballs are basically all the ingredients for veal cutlet, only you mush it all together?*"

"It smells fantastic. Can I help with anything?"

"No, we have this covered," he said nonchalantly. "You could set the table though, and you're going to have to clear the table ALL BY YOURSELF because you're the only one not cooking."

"That's the rule, all right."

So we had the most delicious and beautiful Swedish meatballs I have ever had in my life, served with noodles and Brussels sprouts.

And we're all having them again for lunch today.

*Muffin Man was in charge of measuring and post-egg-addition mixing. Mr. Spock rolled one meatball as a model, and MM did the remaining 35.
MS did all the heat-related activity since there were four things going on at once. And I am a bad, bad blogger because I forgot to take any pictures.

Friday, May 18, 2012


Palms by Doorbell Queen
Palms, a photo by Doorbell Queen on Flickr.

16 years ago today, Mr. Spock and I got married.

11 years ago today, we celebrated our anniversary by taking this picture.

I love you, Mr. Spock. I love our life together, and I love our son.

Happy Anniversary.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Maurice Sendak Died

Here is James Gandolfini reading In the Night Kitchen at the 92nd Street Y on Maurice Sendak's 80th birthday:

In the Night Kitchen is often challenged or banned, but it is one of my favorite books of all time.

Monday, May 07, 2012

What I've been reading, OMG I love my Kindle edition

The latest books in several series came out, and I got 'em that very day sent to my lovely lovely Kindle,

  • Nancy Atherton's Aunt Dimity and the Village Witch, which had less Aunt Dimity than usual, but more of the Village, and I think is one of the best entries in this long-running and delightfully cozy series. If you haven't read any of the books yet, start with Aunt Dimity's Death.
  • I was super thrilled with the latest books by Margaret Maron and Dana Stabenow, two of my favorite contemporary Mystery authors both had a similar idea: they each write two series and they had the detectives from both series meet and work together! I was particularly happy with how Maron brought together Judge Deborah Knott and Lt. Sigrid Harald in Three Day Town. She hadn't written about Sigrid in a long time, but she was able to interact while still being true to their characters. Stabenow has Sgt. Liam Campbell hire Kate Shugak in Restless in the Grave to investigate a sensitive case that may or may not be murder. Such fun to read while she points up the similarities in their lives.
  •  The newest book in the Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris, Deadlocked, is good, but not the best in the series. I get the feeling that Harris needs to take a break from these characters so that she can come back to them fresh.
  • Insurgent, the sequel to Veronica Roth's dystopian young adult novel, Divergent, came out last week. And it is very good, though less strong than her first book. Very sincere, written in the first-person present, which can be jarring at times, but definitely worth a read.
  • Out of the Deep I Cry, the latest in the Clare Fergusson and Russ Van Alstyne series by Julia Spencer-Fleming, satisfyingly solves two mysteries at once. One from the present, and one from the Prohibition Era past. Includes a reminder of why vaccinations are important.

I've also read several non-series books:
  • 7th Sigma by Steven Gould - very richly written YA novel about the future old west when a species of metal eating bug makes it impossible for people to use technology in the infested areas.
  • I generally love Walter Jon Williams' work, but The Fourth Wall was a difficult read for me. The main character is deeply unpleasant. But it is worth powering through it, because the story is imaginative, intricate, and the unpleasantness of the main character is crucial to the story. Nonetheless, it wasn't a book I think I'll read again anytime soon. Unlike his House of Shards, which I've read several times since I first found it in college.
  • And I don't remember if I told you all about One Thousand White Women. It's an historical novel about an historical event that never occured. Written in diary form, it is fascinating, engrossing, and believable. 
  • Also, Reginald Hill died recently, and I've been reading and re-reading everything he ever wrote. I can't recommend his work enough. The Woodcutter is his latest, and it was awesome.