forestofglory: E. H. Shepard drawing of Christopher Robin reading a book to Pooh (Default)
So yesterday R was feeling much better so I was able to go to Jo Walton's signing at Boarderlands Book store in the city. I got there a bit early and was able to browse in the store for bit. I'm not sure I find it helpful when bookstores organize books by hardback/trade vs paperback, thought I can see the advantages in shelf space. However I did buy a couple books.

Anyways the signing was fun. Jo reading the 1st chapter of My Real Children made me want to read more. (I've had a copy for a bit, but I need to be braced for book that will make me cry.) Ada Palmer (who blogs at Ex Urbe) sang before and afterwards.

I got My Real Children, Lifelode (my personal favorite of her books) and What Makes This Book So Great signed.

After the signing I hung around a chatted with people. I got to briefly meet Lisa Goldstein, and tell her than I enjoyed her books. (I could have enthused more, but it might have been creepy.) Then I went out to dinner with the crowd. Dinner was bit noisy and I was an I was seated at one end of long table, but it was still nice to sit and talk with people. I should hang out with book people more often.

Trip Report

Jun. 8th, 2011 08:15 am
forestofglory: (ship)
I'm back home! I never want to get on an airplane again and I have tickets to go out and look at housing in Iowa next week, and then yet more tickets to fly to the east coast for the 3rd wedding of the summer.

Anyways my trip to England was great. I stayed with [personal profile] jack in Cambridge for about the 1st week. I spent lots of time wandering around Cambridge, and visiting with people. I went to Granchester and had cream tea at The Orchard. That friday I borrowed a friends kitchen and made challah. [personal profile] jack and had an improvised shabbat which was very nice.

Saturday the 29th I went out to lunch with some very lovely friends and then helped them with some set up for their wedding the next day. Mostly folding napkins and a bit of sewing. Wish I had got to see them more. Their wedding Sunday was lovely. The ceremony was the most christian wedding I've been to -- but that isn't saying much. Most other people felt it was quite light on religion. They had nice food and ceilidh after. (Dancing is such fun -- I must find a way to do it more often).

Wednesday June 1 took the train up to [personal profile] liv. I stayed with her for a few days. We had a really nice time just hanging out doing low key stuff. I gave her a lesson in challah making and she answered lots of Jewish questions for me.

Then last Friday I took the train to [identity profile] eudoxiafriday.wordpress.com. I took some of the challah and lead shabbat diner. Was a bit nervous about it because she and her family are all christian, but I think it went well. Saturday we went to London and shopped. (I need b-day presents for my family.) Then met up with Pooh Soc people and had a meeting.

Sunday was [personal profile] kerrypolka and [personal profile] ewan's wedding. I'd never met either of them in person so I got to say "I'm from the internet" quite a bit. The wedding ceremony was adorable and I got to meet many other people who are also from the internet.

The dress which I wore to both weddings was a success. I got complements on it, and it was go for dancing in.

Monday Eudoxia and I stayed in, and invited our friend Ignatius over. We made scones and went into town to buy lunch and clotted cream. Then we came back and played board games all afternoon with a break for cream tea. It was an utterly brilliant day.

Wednesday I flew home -- leaving taking of from Heathrow around noon local time and avrive at SFO around 8 local time. It was mildly unpleasant but nothing went wrong. Glad to be home and seeing R and my family again.

Seder

Apr. 24th, 2011 09:37 am
forestofglory: picture of a handfull of cherries on a wooden surface (Cherries)
Friday night I went to a seder. I planned it with some friends. My friend M was excited about using her table linens and knows more people them me, so she hosted. I was in charge of the menu. Planning a vegetarian seder is a bit tricky, and I'd never done it before. I did a bit of prep before hand (see last post). I had few things I knew I wanted to make. (And had asked R to bring a yummy quinoa dish) but I knew my friend was getting her veggie box Thursday so we didn't plan everything ahead. Planning the menu the afternoon of the meal was a bit scary but everything worked out great. Here is what we ate:

Carrot and Celery sticks with (store bought) dip -- this was to keep us going during the bit before the meal.

Frittata with caramelized onions and Parmesan cheese
Roasted asparagus
Broccoli with a soy dressing
Mashed sweet potatoes
Matzoh ball soup (brought by someone else)
southwest quinoa (brought by R)
Haroseth
Mataoh, plain and whole wheat

The French Macaroons -- which where a hit (yay!)
Ice Cream a pint each of chocolate and salted caramel from bi-rite
Chocolate sauce
Raspberries

There was also going to be sauteed chard, but we forgot to cook it until the last minute and then decided there was too much other food to bother.

I also enjoyed the ritual part of the Seder. We had three Haggadot, with different numbers of copies. The where "seder in the bar" -- very short and basic haggadah one of M's friends put together -- 10 copies as it was only about 10 pages long. A traditional Haggadah that I fond on my parents book shelves --3 copies. The Velveteen Rabbi's feminist hagadah -- one copy.

So we mostly used the short one, but digressed a lot. I read a few bits from the VR hagadah, and we read a few bits from the traditional Haggadah, including my family's favorite bit that no one else knew about. This is the bit where the Rabbis are discussing how many plagues there where and go on about the hand of God and the finger of God.

We also digressed to tell personal stories about our families and favorite Midrash.

R had never been to a seder before so I recruited him to ask the 4 questions which he did with style. I think he had and ok time, but was bored by some of the longer bits.
forestofglory: E. H. Shepard drawing of Christopher Robin reading a book to Pooh (Default)
I had a nice Shabbat dinner last night. I made baked beans, took some challah out of the freezer, and made lemon poppy-seed pound cake. I do enjoy cooking for people, baked beans are slow and don't need much attention. Nice for a rainy day when I don't have to be anywhere. The food was good (if I do say so myself) and the company even better. Lots of good converstion and I got to talk about bioswales.

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forestofglory: E. H. Shepard drawing of Christopher Robin reading a book to Pooh (Default)
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