Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
lizziebelle: (little me)
When I was little, I had three imaginary friends. Never one to do things in a small way, me. Their names were Ernie, Bird, and Hatusan. I'm not sure how Hatusan's name was spelled, as I couldn't read or write yet; it was pronounced hah-too-SAHN. Lest you think I got the idea for the names from Sesame Street, let me remind you that this was years before that program started. I did (still do) have an uncle named Ernie, but he was not the inspiration for my friend. I don't remember a time before they were around; I'll have to ask my mother, but they may even predate my sister, who was born when I was two and a half.

We had many adventures, the four of us. We explored my grandparents' farm, looking for ripe berries and dinosaur bones (which were probably cow bones, but try and tell that to a little kid). Grand adventures were to be had in the cornfield and the garden (where we stole peas and ate them right out of the pod). Being the oldest child, I often had to amuse myself, and I've always had a vivid imagination.

I don't remember what they looked like back then, but later on, I imagined them as crows (I suspect watching the show Heckle & Jeckle had something to do with that). When I was four, we moved way upstate to Keeseville, and the gang came with us. That's where we were joined by Bird's friend (he never had a name), who lived on Poke-O-Moonshine, a nearby mountain. Look at the picture of it in the article: that's exactly what I remember it looking like.

I don't remember when I stopped believing in Ernie, Bird, and Hatusan (and Bird's friend). It was probably around the time I started school. But I still thought about them for years, wondering where I came up with them, and that crazy name, Hatusan. It sounds sort of Japanese, or maybe Aztec. Were they memories of past lives? Local spirits? Or just the imaginings of a creative kid looking for playmates? I still have a vivid imagination, but I put it to other uses now. I do sort of miss having those companions, though.

little me


Jun. 21st, 2017 03:24 pm
lizziebelle: (ganesha)

Today is the longest day, the Summer Solstice. I went down to the river early this morning, before it started getting hot, to celebrate the return of summer.

into the woods )

Blessed Midsummer!
lizziebelle: (crow)
Not a lot has been happening around here lately. The weather has been pretty dismal, with lots of rain and grey, broody skies. This does not help my feeling of being overwhelmed by the world. I do try to get out of the house every day, but some days I fail at even that.

I did make it to the wildlife sanctuary last week, where I found lots of lovely pink lady's slipper orchids (though not nearly as many as I should have; I suspect people are picking them, as I found a lot of flower-less plants).

pink ladyslipper orchid

It was cool and green in the woods, with lots of birdsong and ferns.


There's a red tailed hawk that's been hanging out atop the spire at the UU church downtown.


I've seen it there several times. Must be a good lookout place for it.

These lovely little flowers have been popping up in our yard. I'm told they're called Star of Bethlehem.


Speaking of hawks and backyards, my neighbors had to put a chicken run back in the trees because one hawk decided our backyard was an all-you-can-eat chicken buffet, and had killed several of the girls. No more chickens wandering around the yard, but I'm glad they're safe. And the guys bought a bunch of chicks, which are growing fast. They're so cute, and their little peeps make me smile. One of the hens is playing mother to them.

I went to see "Wonder Woman" the other day, and I liked it a lot. It's not perfect, but then what movie is? It was refreshing to see a strong female lead who was not just eye candy or assisting the men. I wouldn't bother to see it in 3D, though. It really didn't add anything to the experience. Save the four bucks for popcorn.


May. 18th, 2017 08:13 am
lizziebelle: (fox)
As usual, we've gone straight from cold to hot. Last week I was wearing hoodies, this week I'm digging for summer clothing and installing my a/c unit. It's supposed to hit 90° today. I got an air quality alert on my phone, even. Oy. At least it's supposed to cool down again by next week.

I went to the Arnold Arboretum the other day to enjoy the lilacs at their peak. A lot of other people had the same idea! They actually cancelled Lilac Sunday this year because the weather was rainy & windy; it didn't end up as stormy as forecast, but it still wouldn't have been a fun day for festivities.


The lilacs were, as always, spectacular. I also took in the shrub & vine garden, and the bonsai collection. Bonsai! )

Even the birds love the lilacs.


I'm glad I made it there before it got too hot out.


May. 2nd, 2017 10:13 pm
lizziebelle: (artsy me)

Beltane morning was cloudy and dreary, but it wasn't raining so I went to Cambridge to celebrate with the Morris dancers and friends. For some reason my phone didn't want to take pictures (I think it was too full of podcasts), and my camera doesn't take great pix in low light, so I didn't take too many photos. I did get a few of Justin and an anonymous fella, both dressed in cloaks and Green Man masks:


I had wanted to go to Mount Auburn, but since it was chilly and cloudy, I decided instead to just go back home and take a nap.

In the afternoon, I walked down to the library to pick up a book they had on hold for me (Elizabeth Kostova's new one, SHADOW LAND). There were a lot of people and trucks around, due to the movie that's filming on Main Street this week. All I really know about it is that it (supposedly) stars David Spade, who may or may not have been there. His stunt double certainly was; one of the scenes they were shooting was him being thrown through the barber shop window. I didn't see anything happening, just a lot of people and cops hanging around in front of Vic's barber shop. I saw the catering truck down the street, and all the equipment trucks in the Elks Club parking lot. Today, most of it was gone.


Exciting times in our little town. I'm more excited about the bagel shop that's opening soon.
lizziebelle: (artsy me)

#mylivejournal #lj18 #happybirthday

So many memories, so many friends.
lizziebelle: (tree lady)
It seems that more and more of you are migrating to Dreamwidth, so I guess I should plant my flag here by posting. If you're reading this on LJ, are on DW and we haven't connected there yet, please connect with me so we don't lose touch!
lizziebelle: (fox)
Yesterday was the first really springlike day we've had in a while. After a cold, wet, snowy/sleety/rainy weekend, it was most welcome. After supper, I went for a walk along the river, where the water was as high as I'd ever seen it. The moon peeked through the bare branches, where buds are starting to swell.

spring moon

The woods were full of starlings and red-winged blackbirds, all singing as the sun sank into the west. It was a glorious symphony.

I saw what I thought at first was a beaver swimming in the river, but when it climbed out of the water, I saw its long narrow tail and recognized it as a muskrat.


I know there are beavers around too, because I see the evidence of their teeth on the trees.

While I was busy trying to capture the muskrat, I totally missed the great blue heron until it took off and flew away. What a gorgeous creature! One of my favorites. I'm glad to see he's back this year.

Today we're back to rain, so no forays in search of the peepers my friends have been telling me they've been hearing. Perhaps tomorrow. I crossed over the river on my way home, and it's even higher than yesterday. I'm very glad I don't live closer to it!

So I see that more people are abandoning LJ because of the new TOS. I have no immediate plans to go anywhere, and I'm sad to be losing even more folks here. I do have a mirrored Dreamwidth journal, but this is still my primary residence, for now. I'm loathe to give it up, after all the wonderful folks I've met here. I hope you don't all leave, but if you do, please let me know where I can find you elsewhere on the interwebs (if we haven't already connected).
lizziebelle: (fox)
I have been in dire need of some spring, so on my way back from mom's today, I stopped at the Arnold Arboretum, hoping to find some signs.


The sun had disappeared, but it was still fairly mild. I found snowdrops popping up beneath the bare trees, and most of the snow was gone. One adorable little girl in a princess dress found the trees irresistible.


signs )

By then, it had started raining lightly so I headed back to the car and home. My spirit has been lifted by the little signs of spring I found in one of my favorite places. Hopefully spring will come for real, and soon!
lizziebelle: (little me)
A few months ago, I entered a contest at my favorite radio station to win tickets to see Green Day, and I actually won! After feeling like it was forever away for ages, the date finally arrived on Friday. What better day to see them than on Saint Patrick's Day? I was wearing green for more than one reason.

There was never any doubt who I would take with me: my awesome niece, who is a huge GD fan.


The show was in Worcester, which is much closer to me (and easier to get to) than Boston. Willow met me at my office, and we drove to downtown Worcester and parked in the garage located conveniently next door to the venue. I had a gift card for a restaurant that's across the street from there, where we had the cheese & charcuterie board. It was quite delicious!


I had only been to the DCU Center once before (when it was still called the Centrum), many years ago when I saw Paul Simon (with Willow's parents). It's a pretty large place; we were on the second level to the right of the stage. Close enough to see what was going on, but not close enough to see the performers' faces. But hey, free, so I'm not complaining!


The opening band, whose name I cannot remember, was actually pretty good. Punk, young, and energetic. You could definitely hear the influence of GD, along with the Ramones and a bit of the Alarm. The drummer was relentless, going directly from one song to another. He reminded me a bit of Dave Grohl. At one point they did stop, and the singer said that the first show he ever went to was Green Day, and it changed his life. Indeed.

And then the main event began. I have always liked Green Day, but now I love them. What an amazing show! Great light show, sparks and bangs, flames (flames!), and the music was so, so good. Billie Joe was so great. He talked a lot, urging us all to unite and stay together, fight the good fight, encouraging everyone to sing along. He totally had the crowd in his hands. Three times (three!) he brought someone up on stage with him; all three were kids in their 'tweens, and they all killed it. The first and second kids he brought up to sing, and they were both great, especially the second one, who ran around the stage and leapt off the steps that went up to the drummer. The third one was the youngest, maybe 11, and he played the guitar. Billie Joe showed him what to do, and he totally nailed it; he then proceeded to run around, playing back-to-back with the bassist and generally acting like a rock star. Best night of his life, I bet. And then Billie Joe told him he could keep the guitar! Everyone cheered.

Green Day at the DCU Center

I stood for nearly the whole show, dancing to the music. I did have to sit for a bit because my back was unhappy about standing on concrete for so long (it's still a bit sore today), but the show was so full of energy, I didn't feel tired till nearly the end. Definitely the most energetic show I've ever been to. I was afraid I'd be the oldest person there, but there were a few old fogeys like me in the crowd, and we all smiled when we caught each others' eyes. Rock & roll is ageless. Even punk. If you're at all a fan, I heartily recommend seeing Green Day live. One of the best shows I've ever been to.
lizziebelle: (fox)
As I knew it would, winter has returned. At least this time it didn't bring more snow with it, just bitter cold. After the very mild temperatures last week, it feels even colder. I never even left the house yesterday, I just stayed cocooned in my apartment.

Earlier this week, the daffodils in front of my office gave us a tease of spring blossoms.


We'll need a few more warm days before those buds bloom.

The most exciting thing from my week was the release of Doctor Strange on disc. It was my first Blu-Ray purchase. I have to say it was just as enjoyable the second time, and the extras were a lot of fun. Definitely my favorite Marvel flick so far.


Yesterday was the 20th anniversary of my dad's passing. It seems unbelievable that it's been that long. I often think about him, especially when I see a movie or TV show that I know he'd like. I wish he could've seen his granddaughter grow up. He'd be so proud of her. She was the light of his life. I wish she could've had more time with him, like I had with my grandfather. Life is so short, and it goes by so quickly.
lizziebelle: (fox)
Each winter is weirder than the last. This year, we seemed to have it all in one week, with 3 snowstorms and bitter cold, followed by unseasonably warm weather. Last weekend, I went for a walk around Gates Pond with my friend B and her dog, Puck. There was still snow in the woods and ice on the water, but the road was mostly mud, punctuated by the occasional ice patch. People were jogging in shorts and tank tops.

The past three days have been downright springlike, nearly 70°F (22°C). We ate lunch outside on our patio at work the past two days, and there were daffodils sprouting in front of the building.


Right now, I have the doors open, and it's 75° in my apartment. The heat hasn't come on in more than three days. Thanks to Facebook's "On This Day" feature, I see that it was bitter cold at this time the past couple of years. I really don't like to complain about nice weather, but geez. This is downright weird.

Being a lifelong Northeasterner (and longtime New Englander), I know winter isn't finished with us yet. We will likely get at least one more storm, and more cold weather. I just hope the trees don't bud too early and then freeze; that happened last year, and ruined much of the peach crop.

Other than the weather strangeness, not a lot has been happening around Chez LizzieBelle. Just trying to get through each day has been as much as I can handle. I've had to cut back on my social media intake, because there is just too much anger and scariness out there. I'm doing what I can do, and that's all I can do at the moment. Still trying to seek out the beauty and the goodness, because otherwise I wouldn't be able to cope at all. I'm really proud to see the budding activists amongst the younger generation in my family, though. My generation may have dropped the ball, but they're picking it up and running with it.

This morning, I went over to mum's to help her out with some housework and shopping. She's still pretty weak from having a cold, and was recently diagnosed with COPD thanks to her asthma and the recurring pneumonia the past couple of years. I do worry about her. It's hard to see a parent decline from the strong person who raised you. But she's stubborn enough to want to fight, and that's a good thing. She's not ready to give up just yet.

We had tacos from the delightful taqueria in Canton, and called my sister to wish her a happy birthday. I was exhausted, but it was a good visit.

I wanted to stop at the Arboretum on the way home, but by then it was raining, so I settled for stopping at Trader Joe's to stock up on noms. Not as much fun, but now I have lots of yummy food in my freezer and cupboards. I wish they'd open one closer to me, but then maybe that wouldn't be a good thing. Not as special.

What are you up to this weekend? Something fun, I hope!
lizziebelle: (crow)
We didn't quite get the 12+" that were forecast, but we still got a respectable amount of snow today. Hard to tell with all the blowing and drifting, but it looked like at least 8". I know they got more out in the western part of the state (see [livejournal.com profile] asakiyume's latest post). It took me a good hour to shovel off the deck, stairs, and around my car. :::oof:::


At least I didn't have to drive in it. My employers let everyone work from home today. I've never done that before. It was a little strange doing my job in my living room, but it was so nice not to worry about driving in the snow or missing a day of work. We use Slack (a chat app), and it was fun reading everyone's updates throughout the day. I especially enjoyed peoples' lazy pet photos that they posted.

It's been a weird winter. Pretty mild, by New England standards, but February is always the worst month, weather-wise. Yesterday, it was in the high forties after starting out coated in ice. Quite the rollercoaster. It's true what they say about the weather here: if you don't like it, just wait five minutes.

When the weather gets like this, it feels like spring is a million years away. Especially after getting a tease of it, like we did this week. It doesn't help that I see pictures of snowdrops and daffodils from friends in warmer climes. It's not that I hate winter; I just wish it didn't last so long.
lizziebelle: (artsy me)
I was in Boston today with over 100,000 others to rally for Women's rights, and it was amazing. What made it even better was all the people I know who were there, and in sister marches all over the country. I know people who marched in New York, Washington, Binghamton, Albany, Seneca Falls, Ithaca, Peoria, Seattle, Austin, L.A., Montpelier, and Raleigh. And probably other places as well. Reading my Facebook feed today was wonderful, which is quite a change from what it's been lately.

I took the train in with a couple of friends. There were a lot of people at our stop, mostly women but there were men and kids, too. Carrying signs, and wearing pink pussy hats. There was a palpable excitement in the air. I complimented a trio of women on their hats, and they gave me one from a bag of them that they were carrying. I have a pink pussy hat!


Ours was the third or fourth stop on the line, and it was already standing room only. They picked up more people at the next stop, then they stopped letting more people on board. They did add another train afterward, but they were totally overwhelmed and unprepared. They never even took tickets.

The atmosphere was quite festive. It felt to me like being at a Pagan festival on bonfire night. Lots of smiles, laughs, camaraderie. We got off at Back Bay and started making our way up Boylston Street. I tried to meet up with a Facebook friend, but we never managed to find each other so the three of us headed across the street to the Common.

There were people pouring onto the Common from all sides. We found a spot to stand, toward the back of the crowd. It didn't take long for it to fill in behind us, with hundreds more people streaming in all around us. I have never seen so many people in one place before. I can't even imagine what it was like in Washington.

Lots more pix )

I found my friends at the station, with plenty of time to get a ticket, eat something, and use the bathroom. The train was pretty full, but not nearly as crowded as it had been on the way in. The conductor had started taking tickets, but he never made it to us as more people got on at the next two stops. He was funny though, joking around with the kids on the train. We thanked him when we got off.

Seeing all of my friends and relatives who were protesting all over the country today was so uplifting and heartening. Getting messages of support from those who couldn't go made me so proud that I was there. Seeing the footage from all the cities made me feel a kinship with all those who stand up to the fascism that is rearing its ugly head in our capitol. I hope the message was heard.

lizziebelle: (sherlock)
I went out last night with some girlfriends, for the first time in ages. I really should do that more often. My typical Saturday night is spent in front of the telly or with my nose in a book.

We started out at the Rail Trail Flatbread Pizza place, which I hadn't been to yet. It's a popular spot, and is credited with beginning the revival of downtown Hudson. We ended up not getting pizza, but instead nibbled on appetizers and sipped lovely craft cocktails and cider. There was much giggling, and two of our lot explaining how to brew hard cider at home to the waitress was very entertaining. I'm pretty sure she's going to give it a try.

We then crossed the street to New City Microcreamery, which is owned by the Rail Trail folks. Instead of getting in line for ice cream, however, we headed to the back and flicked on a light switch by a door. A little door in the wall popped open, a man asked us how many, and then closed again. Then the door opened and we were ushered in, past a black velvet curtain, to an authentic-looking speakeasy. Lots of dark wood, low lighting, and U-shaped booths lined the long, narrow place. We ordered more apps and craft cocktails, and enjoyed the ambiance. I had a frozen grasshopper, half dessert and half cocktail. All delicious.


They made it like New City makes their ice cream: with liquid nitrogen. While waiting for the restroom, I watched the bartender make another frozen drink in the KitchenAid mixer; fog billowed out of the bowl while the mixer whirled. It was really cool, both literally and figuratively. Next time, I want to try the frozen Old Fashioned.

Next Saturday, I'm planning to go into Boston for the Women's March. D.C. is not doable for me, but a bunch of local friends are planning to go, so we'll all take the train in together. I want there to be a huge turnout, everywhere there is a March happening. This is historic. We can't let the Nazis get away with it. Yes, IMO it's that dire. The stuff that the GOP is pulling is positively fascist. I cannot understand how anyone could vote for any of them. I truly fear the ending of our Union as we know it.

Before the revolution, however, I'm really looking forward to the season finale of Sherlock. OMG this season has been intense! I will likely go see it again in the theatre this week. Such an amazing show.

How was your weekend?
lizziebelle: (sherlock)
January 1st, for me, is simply the day I put up a new calendar. It's rather arbitrary, with other days making more sense to me (solstice, for one). But I decided it was a good day to pay a visit to Walden again, as it was relatively warm and sunny.

As was the case last time I went, a lot of others had the same idea. Parking was free today, and the visitor center was open (yay, bathrooms). I wandered down to the pond after saying hello to Henry and the replica of his cabin.


Most people were walking on the beach, and there was a bunch of college-age kids who started stripping off their clothes and heading toward the water.

Yep, they went into the water... )

I'll have to pick a non-holiday, non-weekend day to go back sometime.
lizziebelle: (OMG ONOZ)
My brakes failed this morning. I mean, completely failed, pedal to the floor, no slowing down failed. Fortunately I was going slowly, and the hand brake was able to stop the car, and no one was right in front of me, and a dozen other things that could've made it so much worse. Skipping to the end: it's getting fixed, I have a rental car, and nobody (and nothing) was hurt. Truly, I am counting my blessings.

But. It's going to cost a lot of money to fix, and I just started this new job, and it's going to wipe me out. An angel asked how donations could be made, so here is a link to PayPal if you feel so inclined (and now you know my full name! Elizabeth is my middle name). I would be extremely grateful, and I promise to pay it forward when I am able to.

Tonight is the longest night, and after tomorrow the light will return. Contemplating all the meanings of that this Solstice eve.


Nov. 30th, 2016 09:46 pm
lizziebelle: (artsy me)
I finally got it together and published my 2017 calendar. Apologies for the lateness, but it was a difficult autumn. I'm sure you understand why. ;)

Hopefully this widget will work, but here is the link as well.

Fun fact: my new employer did the Lulu website a while back! Small world.


Nov. 24th, 2016 11:09 am
lizziebelle: (artsy me)
golden clouds over the atrium

Despite all the awful things going on in the world, I'm spending time this week practicing gratitude. It is, after all, the original meaning behind Thanksgiving.

I have a lot to be thankful for. I have an awesome new job, a roof over my head, enough to eat, a relatively comfortable existence. What I am most thankful for, though, is my network of friends and family (this includes all of you, BTW). Sometimes I am astonished at the love they show me. It gives me hope for humanity, which is sometimes hard to come by.

So I'm trying to not dwell on the things I wish I had, and be grateful for everything I do have.
lizziebelle: (moon)

It's been an eventful couple of weeks since last you saw me here. I started my new job last week, and so far I like it very much there. It's a cool company (they do websites and digital marketing), and everyone has been very nice. They provide lunch for us every Thursday, and once a month we do a potluck. Today was this month's potluck, and I made lacy oatmeal cookies, which were very popular. I have to take the recipe in tomorrow so people can make copies of it. They have a wine & cheese club every other Friday at 4:00; last week I brought a nice Irish cheddar with porter, which was appreciated. There was also candied bacon and bacon-infused bourbon, in addition to other cheeses and wine. I have found my people. *g*

There's a cooler (like you see in stores) stocked with soda, seltzer, energy drinks, and beer. Yes, beer! They also have a microbrew club. There are gumball machines (for which you don't need coins) filled with Skittles, M&Ms, and pistachios. They even have a couple of Keurig machines, with all the fixings. They take good care of their employees!

It's a ten-minute commute, all on back roads so I don't have to get on the highway. I'm not sure how that's going to be when it snows, but we'll see. There are lots of shops and restaurants in the vicinity (not that I go out for lunch all that much, but it's nice to have options). There's even a lovely atrium in our building.


My second day on the phone, I got a live one. They're seriously considering us, and if we get it, it's a pretty big sale. My boss is really happy. The CEO high-fived me. I've been sitting in on the calls so I can learn the process. So many new terms to learn! It's all very interesting. I now know the difference between a CRM and a CMS. I've lost track of how many times my boss has said "Good job" to me. So nice to hear.

So yeah, lots of things to be happy about. Which makes the election and its fallout all the more heartbreaking. So much anger, so much pain. I've been spending a lot less time on social media because of it. I'm just sick over what's happening. I don't have it in me to be an organizer, but I will do everything I can to help those who are, and those who are affected. If they start registering Muslims, I will stand in line and register myself. I will stand up to hate wherever I see it. We must not allow it to take over. There are more of us than there are of them, even though they are louder.

I am doing what I can to share positive and beautiful things on Facebook, because somebody's gotta do it. Not to minimize the bad, or belittle anyone's pain, but because I believe in reminding people of the good in this world. To show what we're fighting for. Just like Samwise Gamgee.


I haven't been able to write since the election. I'm giving up on NaNoWriMo, for now. November isn't the best month for me anyway, and with all that's going on, my brain just can't get into that space right now. Maybe in January, when it's deep winter and going outside isn't as good an idea. I'm scribbling short ideas down for when I do have the brain for it.

Hopefully this weekend, I'll be able to corral some brain cells into putting together a new calendar. It's way past time for me to do that. Oh, and I found out my company did Lulu's website! Small world.

How are you all holding up? I've been reading your posts, even though I haven't been posting or commenting all that much. I'm glad we're all here.

August 2017

678 9101112

Most Popular Tags


RSS Atom

Style Credit

Page generated Oct. 23rd, 2017 02:11 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios