Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The Indy 500 - in my Bedroom!

Last night, Moppet, our new kitten seemed sleepy as I went upstairs to bed. She followed me, and watched while I got ready for sleep, and then jumped up onto the bed with me. All was well until 2 a.m.

At that point, she began to race all over the bedroom, bathroom and closet. On the bed, off the bed, run to the closet. Onto the bed again, jumping from place to place like a baby goat. Chasing my feet and hands under the covers; making me cover my face and head as she jumped - claws out - all over me. After she tired of that, she began the racing though the rooms again. I thought she'd never tire herself out, but she did; and burrowed under the covers and stretched out alongside my belly, purring loudly. I was tired of her shenanigans, but who can remain mad at a sweet, soft, silky kitten who purrs so loudly that her whole body vibrates?  Surely not me. 

She slept for about 2 hours, while I tried to close my eyes and rest, but sleep eluded me. At 4am, she started the Indy 500 again and made a fool of herself and me for another hour. Finally, at 5 am, she appeared to have run out of steam, so we settled in for another round of sleep. That time, we were both successful at it and I slept until 7:15 or so, before being awakened by mr. kenju, who was bellowing at the top of his lungs.

Mr. kenju walks with a cane and is none too steady on his feet. Every single time he attempts to walk up or down our stairs, Moppet takes it as her personal challenge to trip him up. She will race to the stair where he is, and defiantly sit on the step below it or above it - whichever direction he is going. If he places his cane on another step, she grabs at it with teeth and paws. we have no idea why she does this - perhaps she thinks it is a game. He hollers out and I have to go and hold her until he gets to his destination. Once he is on another level, she leaves him alone - unless he decides to use his walker. The wheels on the walker fascinate her and she will get under the walker and paw at the wheels whenever it moves. He doesn't want to run over her paws, so he stops until I can remove her. It is funny, in a way, but he doesn't think so. I spend all my time retrieving and holding the cat so she doesn't make him fall down, or fending off her claws, or playing with her.

I have a cute photo to share with you  (if you have not already seen it on Facebook.)

Here, she rests on my legs while I surf the web. Most of the time I have to bat her off the laptop keyboard. She loves to sleep on it.

We have a love-hate relationship with this kitten; but mostly love. We do wish she'd grow up a bit faster. She rips the heck out of my skin daily; my knees, hands and wrists are full of bruises and scratches. So far, she has not done that to mr. kenju - which for her safety - is a very good thing. I shudder to think what he might do if she scratched him like she does me.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

WOW at the Matthew's House

On Monday, the ladies of my former neighborhood  (the WOW'S) went to Cary, NC,  for lunch at The Matthew's House; a wedding and event site. There were nine of us for lunch; a buffet which is set up in their event building - a lovely venue - behind the old home. We had caprese salad, stewed carrots, a Caribbean rice dish and coconut shrimp. Dessert was peach shortcake with peaches and fresh whipped cream on top. I didn't take photos of the food, but I did of our group, below,
and of the adjoining old home, which is nicely furnished.

The entrance doors are stained glass panes, although I don't know if they are the originals, since 
the colors are so bright. The parlor is well appointed; though small.
I didn't get photos of the dining room because some people were in it. The foyer is wide and runs the entire length of the home
. The bedrooms upstairs are large and set up so that a wedding party can stay there - at least the bride and groom can. The master bedroom
is lovely and the tub beckons one and all. Once, when I did a wedding here, I had to provide rose petals that were going to be floated in the tub on the wedding night.

This is the east side of the house, from the yard where outdoor weddings are held.
A closer view of the huge hydrangeas
A view of the side yard, with statuary.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Better Late than Never!

We finally went out to celebrate our anniversary  (#51)  this week. we were only 4 + weeks late.....LOL.  One of my favorite places is Kanki, Japanese Steak House. We eat there several times a year and I always order the same thing: the Samurai, which is filet mignon and shrimp. The chef starts by cooking mushrooms, onions, zucchini and rice with scrambled egg. When the fire flames up like this, people shrink back automatically. The heat from it is unimaginable. The chefs always put on a show; clanking knives and spatulas as if they were drums or cymbals. Some of them can lift an egg (in the shell) with a spatula and toss it into the top of their chef toques. Children are always amazed by their antics. 

Here are the aforementioned foods, sizzling on the teppanyaki grill: chicken, shrimp, filet mignon and mushrooms. Boy are they good!!
The meal starts with salad and soup; both of which I could consume in mass quantities. I love the ginger dressing on the salad and the soup is so delicious.  Have you ever been to a Japanese restaurant? 

Sunday, August 02, 2015

A weekend with My Daughter, Part 5

I forgot to tell you about one of my favorite breakfast places in NOVA; the Silver Diner.

I know there are several of these places; this one is in Clarendon, a section of Arlington, VA.

My breakfast, plus hot, black coffee.

The interior.  

If you ever find yourself in this area, please do enjoy a meal here. The food and the service are good! 

My trip as so short that I didn't have any time to contact friends or family in the area - I hope you understand. Maybe next time. 

A weekend with My Daughter, Part 4

When we left the Hirshorn Museum, we began our long trek back to Raleigh; a trip which took much longer than it should due to massive traffic delays all the way from DC to Richmond. We even got on US1 for a time, but it was just as bad as US Route 95, and was made worse by stoplights. 

A bit of shopping delayed us as well - who can pass IKEA without stopping? I was tired from walking all morning, so daughter put me in a wheelchair and I pushed the shopping cart, as she pushed me.

Before long, it was nearly full, as we purchased glassware, seat cushions, straws, brushes, silver utensils, and the like - nothing big. I always enjoy seeing what is new at Ikea, and of course, people-watching is fun too.

After lunch, we got on our way again....many times we were only creeping along. We could never tell what the hold-up was, but eventually we reached Raleigh and home.  I had said that there was at least one down-side to going out of town without Jim and that was that the kitchen would be a mess. How right I was!  Leaving husband in the care of son and grandson was a good idea, except for the dirt and dishes in the sink and un-washed dishwasher. Oh, well, I enjoyed being away so much that I won't fuss about that part.   LOL

A wonderful weekend with My Daughter, Part 3

Here are the promised photos - I hope to be able to post them beside their info, but Blogger doesn't always cooperate...1. Lucio Fontana "Spatial Concept: Nature"

2. Arnaldo Pomodoro  Sphere No. 6

Henry Moore  "Seated Woman"

Henry Moore  "King and Queen"

Auguste Rodin  "The Burghers of Calais"

Giacomo Manzu  'Young Girl on a Chair" 

Marino Marini    "Horse and Rider"

Jeff Koons  "Kiepenkerl"  

Yinka Shonibare   "The Age of Enlightenment - Antoine Lavoisier"

A view of Washington, DC from the balcony at the Hirshorn

No info available on this one. 

Mary Bauermeister
"In Memory of Your Feelings, an homage to Jasper Johns"

Crape Myrtle in the gardens - very fragrant.


The Smithsonian Castle, as seen from the Hirshorn

part of an exhibit

another sign in the exhibit

An installation featuring fluorescent lighting - no info

A poem from the Iranian photography installation

Tony Cragg   "Subcommittee"

Juan Munoz   "Last Conversation Piece"

The center court with fountain

A sign on the surrounding fence

Bear in mind, as I said in part 2, all this art was collected by the father of my blog friend, Naomi, and donated to the Smithsonian. She grew up with much of what you see here in her home and grounds. How blessed she was to be able to see art like this every day!! Naomi, I wanted to get a long shot of the full museum, but traffic kept me from being able.

A Weekend with My Daughter, Part 2

Next we left for the concert at Kennedy Center. We made good use of my handicapped parking pass in the parking deck, which was full of cars   - even with the parking fee of $23. I thought $7 for parking was bad (in Raleigh).

I had never been there before, but I had seen it often from the car. I had no idea that there were several different theaters inside.
Also playing there was "The Book of Mormon" and a comedy performance, so the crowds were thick.

We found our seats, which I referred to as the crow's nest level. But that didn't matter to me; just seeing the concert was terrific, no matter where we sat. We were four rows from the top, on the second tier,  but we had unlimited sight lines.

Tony Bennett was born in 1926, and he turns 89 on August 3rd. Lady Gaga posted today on Facebook that they got a cake for his birthday, and for the last performance in their concert tour, which was tonight. I would love to know where he gets all his energy. He was on stage for the better part of two hours, and never sat down. He and Lady Gaga alternated songs and also sang many duets. All the old favorite standards were sung and he ended with his signature song, I Left My Heart in San Francisco. During the performance, Lady Gaga mentioned that it might seem odd for her to be on stage singing with a legend like Tony, and that she would be forever grateful for his faith in her singing abilities. It really was a wonderful concert; both of them were sooooo good and her clothing, while less dramatic and revealing than her usual performance costumes, were beautiful to see. One in particular; a red feather, floor-length cape and dress caught my eye, as did a silver lame sheath with see through skirting. I tried to get photos of them, but the distance proved too far for my cell-phone camera.

Another great thing about the concert was the musicians. Both Tony and Gaga had their own set of musicians, and they were backed by a 13 piece orchestra as well. I kept remarking about his piano player - who was really terrific, as were both saxophone players and Gaga's trumpeteer. I told my daughter that I'd love to see a concert where Tony's pianist played he piano for hours. He was fabulous. I'm a real fan of the piano and this guy did it justice. All ages, all colors and all nationalities attended this performance. I was surprised at the number of younger people; who seemed to enjoy the music as much as I did. Quite a few standing ovations were given.

After the concert, we returned to the hotel, and I ordered a beer - my usual bedtime fare. It was Pale Ale - remind me to never order that again. Ick.

The bed was especially welcome after a day of sight-seeing, walking and "concerting." This morning, before leaving to return to Raleigh, we went into D.C. to tour the Smithsonian Castle; a place I had seen years ago when our children were small. We found a great parking place and daughter secured parking for $3, and then we discovered that the museum was closed for renovations. It didn't say that on their web-site! Then we discovered that a museum I have been wanting to see (Hirshorn Sculpture gardens and Museum was just across the street, so we left the car and walked across the street and toured the Sculpture gardens and the building too. What a treat it was!  I had wanted to see it ever since I found out that my blog friend Naomi's father had collected all the sculpture and donated it to the Smithsonian for the museum.  I was not disappointed at all. The gardens are full of pretty flowers and shrubbery, as well as sculptures.

The building opened at 10 am, so after a short wait, we toured that too. Most of the art is beyond my comprehension, but there were some interesting photographs and smaller sculptures.  Naomi, I don't know how long it has been since you were there, but I took lots of pics for you! I hope you enjoy them. I will post all the photos from there tomorrow.