Sunday, August 31, 2008

Going away party

So on Friday I had the lovely opportunity to have a bunch of people over for my last Friday in Cambridge. It was great to see a bunch of people "one last time", and we put a pretty good dent in all the booze that was left over from my birthday party. That was kind of the point, though.

Here are a bunch of us librarians, Ashley, Colin, Allison, me and Peet (Ulysses and Nick in the background, but they aren't librarians):


Here are my tall friends. They were all very happy to hear that I got movers. Lee, Mark, me and Nick:


And here are the best roomies a girl could ask for. Rachael, me and Tim (he falls under "tall friend", too, but he wasn't around for the first photo):


It was a great excuse to see a bunch of folks one more time and I'm glad everyone came out for it. It was a night to remember, that's for sure. Love you all! I'm missing Cambridge already!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Last but not least...

Today was my last pick-up at Lindentree Farm, and it was a good one! We got cantaloupe, watermelon, green peppers, eggplant, tomatillos, carrots, leeks, lettuce, onions, cucumbers, three types of tomatoes, corn, basil, thyme, cilantro, parsley, sage, garlic, jalapeƱos, and beautiful wildflowers.


It was great to be back on the farm and to say goodbye to the farmers, Moira and Ari, and enjoy a beautiful afternoon. I know there are CSAs in NJ, but it will be hard to beat my experience at Lindentree.

Northampton, one more time...

One of my favorite places in Massachusetts is Northampton. I decided to take the day and head out there to do some new things and some of my favorite things. Sylvie went to Smith and has always told me how beautiful the campus is, and it's right near downtown Northampton. So I decided to head to the Smith College Art Museum and the Botanic Gardens on campus. I'm glad I tried something new. The Art Museum was wonderful. The highlights included an installation of a Sol LeWitt wall drawing that was very cool.

I couldn't take any photos in the art museum, but I made up for that with tons of photos in the botanic gardens. It was a beautiful day and I enjoyed exploring all of the different little rooms.

Here are some koi in a pond with pots of orchids reflected in the water:

Here's a view of one of the workbenches:


Some plants from my favorite continent:

One of my favorite things in Northampton is Haymarket Cafe, and I indulged in two of my favorite things: a real iced chai with soy milk and their Baked Tofu sandwich. I'm getting hungry again just thinking about them. If you're ever in Northampton, please seek this place out and indulge yourself. Everything is good, but these two things are especially delicious.

On the way home I had the chance to stop in Worcester and have dinner with Christa. I'm so glad I got to see her again before heading out to NJ. It was a great day!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Plant Life

Summer is always a fun time to watch things grow, and there have been some interesting blooms showing up around here lately. First of all, another one of my mystery plants decided to bloom. This is the plant that is referred to as my Dr. Suess plant because it looks like something from a Dr. Suess book. Every few months is looses all of its leaves and then grows a little more stem and then more leaves show up, but this is the first time that blooms have shown up, too. So if anyone out there recognizes this plant, let me know what it is. Maybe there's something in this Cambridge air that's good for the houseplants. We'll see how things progress once they make it to NJ.


The other thing that's been blooming around here are the morning glories! And yesterday the first blue one opened up. I hate to play favorites, but the blue ones really have a special place in my heart. Here's the first big blue bloom:


Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Sylvie and Miriam get hitched!

This past weekend two of my favorite people got married. Sylvie and Miriam had a beautiful Jewish ceremony outside at the Essex Room in Essex, MA and then it was followed by an amazingly fun reception with a great band, good food, so much fun dancing and good friends. The whole event was so beautiful and I was happy to be a part of their special day.

Here's a photo of me and Sylvie with our pretty bouquets:


I met Sylvie while getting my Library degree at Simmons, so as you can expect, there were plenty of librarians present. Here we have a photo of all of the librarians in the room, some of us caught in the evil act of shushing:

Since the wedding was early in the day, the whole party was over by about 6:15 and some of us decided to meet up in Saugus for a round of mini-golf and some ice cream to finish off the evening. It was great fun and it was a great chance to hang out with some of these folks before I move to Princeton.

Friday, August 22, 2008

As seen in Harvard Square

One thing I will miss about Harvard Square is all of the street performers. Well maybe not all of them, but some of them. I recently came across an upright player piano playing "Dames" from 42nd Street with a guy singing along. The question of course is "How did they get that piano there?"

video

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Last Day at Harvard

The above photo is of a gate at Harvard.
The quote seemed appropriate.
Yesterday was my last day working at Harvard. It was a bittersweet occasion. I really enjoyed working with all of my colleagues there, and I'm happy to say that I finished the section of the project that I hoped to finish. It was sad to say good bye to so many people. Today I spent most of the day packing to move, and getting ready to go to Sylvie and Miriam's wedding this weekend.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Boston check list

A few weeks ago I made a little list of things I wanted to do before leaving the Boston area. Last Saturday, the day I got home from Cape May, I had the chance to check off 3 of those things. Matt and I had an amazing afternoon and evening.

It started out with a trip to the North End, which is the Italian section of Boston. We had lunch at the Original Pizzeria Regina and then headed to Mike's Pastry for lattes and cannolis.

Both were delicious, although I ended up being a little over-caffeinated between the soda I had with the pizza and the latte with the cannoli.

By the time we got to the Skywalk at the top of the Prudential Building I was a little queasy, but still enjoyed the view. It was fun to find buildings that I recognized, and it was great to see Fenway Park filling up for the game that night.

After we made it down to ground level, we went on a Duck Boat Tour! It was really amazing. I had so much fun and we went all over the city. Our driver was great, both informative and amusing. I would recommend this to anyone who's interested in getting a good overview of the city in a fun way. This is our driver sitting in the jumpseat when he let a kid take the wheel while we were in the Charles River.

After the Duck tour we went to get drinks and watched the Olympics at a bar downtown. It was a great way to continue the feeling of being on vacation, and awesome to have some fun in Boston before I move.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Cape May 2008


After spending the weekend in Princeton and finding an apartment, I headed straight to Cape May for a relaxing week with my family. And by family, I mean the whole fam damily. Dan & Mo and their kids John and Liam, my parents and John & Jill and thier kids Nathaniel, Sebastian and Emerson. We played plenty of Blokus, skee-ball and mini-golf, spent some quality time at the beach (yes, I went in the ocean up to my waist), took a horse-drawn carriage ride, the ladies (there's only 4 of us) went to formal tea and got pedicures, and I had the chance to go to dinner with my brothers and their wives while mom and dad watched the kiddos. Overall it was a great week. As usual, I'm already looking forward to next year!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Princeton apartment, yes I have one!

So, thanks to some much needed moral support from my good friend Sylvie, I decided on an apartment in Princeton. I currently love the fact that I can walk to work at Harvard and I made that a priority when looking at apartments in Princeton. So I decided on a one-bedroom that's about a 15 minute walk from my new job. My walk takes me directly past the amazing Princeton Public Library and my choice of cute bakeries and coffee shops. It's close to the downtown area, but right around the corner from an elementary school with a community garden and amazing playground (I can't wait for my nephews to see it), a community rec center with a pool, tennis courts and basketball courts and great Mexican and Italian restaurants. While Sylvie and I walked around the neighborhood more than one person said hello to us, either from their front porch or while walking past us. It seems like a great little neighborhood and I'm excited to live there and hopefully become part of the community.

The apartment itself is not the prettiest place I've ever lived (my one bedroom in Chicago will be tough to beat), but it will do for now. It has a teeny-tiny bathroom, a kitchen, living room/dining area and bedroom. I'm looking forward to moving in and making it my own. I'll be sure to post some photos once I get to a good place in the decorating.

Thanks so much to Sylvie for keeping me company on the drive down and helping me keep my thoughts straight as we looked at so many apartments, each with their ups and downs. One of the funniest "downs" to one of the places was the fact that it was across the street from a cemetery, which is fine, except that when I looked out the bedroom window in that direction, the biggest headstone in the whole place had one word on it: BETH. It was a little creepy. There were other reasons not to take that apartment, but that was the most amusing. :)

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Passim on NPR

Tonight I had the chance to hear this great story about Club Passim on NPR. I've been volunteering here since I moved to the Boston area 2 years ago and I've had the pleasure of seeing so many great shows. Some of the highlights include Josh Ritter, Utah Phillips, The Nields, Erin McKeown, The Falcon Ridge Preview Tour, and Old School Freight Train among others.

One of the hardest things for me to leave in Chicago was the Old Town School of Folk Music and Passim did a great job of filling in that gap. I took guitar lessons at Passim and made friends with some great people who were also volunteers. Soon I'll be leaving Cambridge and Passim and I'll be looking, yet again, for another great venue to volunteer for and hopefully see some great music while I'm at it.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Tomatoes!

I haven't even gotten to NJ yet and I'm surrounded by tomatoes of all shapes, shades and sizes. And I love it! This past weekend it was my turn to do the pick up at Lindentree Farm. Sylvie and I headed out there together and part of the "pick your own" was Cherry Tomatoes. We had a couple different options, but our favorite (through taste testing) was the Sun Gold variety that ripens to a beautiful orange color. Here I am after filling our basket (and our bellies) full of these delicious treats.
There were so many rows of tomato bushes with tons of unripe tomatoes on them, so I know we'll be getting more in the coming weeks!

I have some of my own tomatoes growing on the back porch. I got a plant from my friend Jeff on my birthday and it's doing really well. I think it's a Green Zebra variety, so I'm excited to see what this ripens into. Here is a photo of the biggest one right now:

There are plenty of flowers and some more fruit on the vine, just waiting to ripen into home grown tomatoes! I can't wait!

The strangest thing (also tomato related) happened in our kitchen this week. My roommate Tim had bought a tomato at a farmer's market a couple weeks ago and left it out on the counter. I was cleaning up the kitchen and when I went to throw this weeks old, rotting tomato away, I noticed that little tomato plants were growing out of it. We now have it out on the back deck and lovingly refer to it as our Mutant Tomato. I can't wait to see where this goes. You can see more green shoots trying to poke through under the skin:

Also on the back porch (but not tomato related) are my morning glories! They are growing out of a pot and seem to be doing well climbing up the rails on the porch. I haven't had any flowers yet, but I'm starting to see buds and that's very promising. I just want to see both the moon flowers and morning glories bloom at least once before I have to leave.

This summer has been great for all of the plants on our back porch. Tim has some peppers and we have a good variety of herbs, too. It's so nice to have an outdoor space to enjoy on these hot days. Hopefully I'll be lucky enough to find something with that option in Princeton. For now, I'm happy enjoying the porch that I have.