Dec. 31st, 2014

melaniesuzanne: (Me at SPWF2014 (by John T Riley))
September: The beau and I started off the month at a Labor Day party with his friends. What a fun group of folks! And almost to a one, they pulled him aside and told him not to screw up and lose me. I take that as high praise, heh. Our party host is breeds fish and provided the beau with some of the fish and plants in his own aquarium. Unfortunately, one of those plants came loaded with snails and those snails were beginning to take over and become a true scourge. Enter assassin snails! The beau added four to the tank and we watched them completely ignore the scourge snails. I named the big ones Altair and Ezio (characters from the Assassins' Creed franchise); the little ones were Chicken Little and Nico Rosensnail (because this snail jumped Chicken Little fairly soon and I thought it was eerily reminiscent of the Formula One driver, Nico Rosenberg, who nearly took out his teammate during the Belgium Grand Prix). I was vexed by the lack of annihilation in the aquarium until we began to notice dozens upon dozens of empty shells littering the sand. Oh ho! They were wiping out the scourge under cover of darkness like any good assassin would do. Eeeeexcellent.

I spent the next weekend at the Summit Point race track in West Virginia with the beau, his dad, and their karting club. When the beau wasn't warming up or racing, he and his dad were futzing with their karts. I spent most of my time reading in the shade in my reclining camp chair and listening to the roar of souped up engines of the car racing club which was sharing the track. It was actually a pretty enjoyable weekend and the track is in a gorgeous location.

I also got back on my bike and rode the 30 mile route of the Backroads Century. I was kind of nervous about it since I'd be riding alone, but I signed up with a group and more or less kept up with them. Towards the end there, it got pretty tough but another lady kept cheering me on and I, her. I'm really glad I did it.

The other big events of the month were Wizard World Richmond Comic Con where I debuted my Flame Princess cosplay and participated in my first costume contest and Steampunk unLimited, both of which received their own posts. I checked off another post-WLS bucket list item with a photo shoot at Atomic Cheesecake Studios and got my pin-up and burlesque ON. Oh my goodness, that was SO MUCH FUN. And the pictures were stunning.

Toms kart


melaniesuzanne: (Me at SPWF2014 (by John T Riley))
November: After the frenetic pace of October, November seemed downright sedate. I wore my suffragist sash to my polling place on election day, but people were much more interested in my purple hair. Le sigh. My Aussie aunt came to town and I got spend about an hour visiting with her just before she headed down south to meet back up with Mom and Pete.

Things really picked up towards the end of the month, though. In one Saturday, I spent the afternoon playing DnD then raced over to Manassas to stroll through the Festival of Lights with [ profile] pirategirleee and then raced over to Springfield with the beau for a friend's birthday party at a trampoline place. That Festival of Lights stroll was called the Snowflake Stampede and was a fairly lovely way to spend an hour or so in the frigid air. PG and I didn't run -- which should be obvious with my repeated use of the word "stroll" -- and geeked about Doctor Who, Harry Potter, Adventure Time, and cosplay while taking in the gorgeous light display. The trampoline adventure, on the other hand, was quite the workout and I had the unfortunate discovery that I have an old lady bladder or something very close to it. Nearly every time I bounced, there was a little TMI. ) A good time was had by most until the beau turned his ankle when he landed badly on the trampoline basketball court. Poor dear.

I got tired of the upkeep of purple hair and went back to blonde with an unfortunate turn of green hair for a day or two. I'd accidentally grabbed a box of ash blonde color and all that greenish-blue base on top of the purple went mossy. UGH. I mean, it might work on some folks, but completely clashed with my coloring. A warm, golden blonde box brought my hair back to normalcy.

Thanksgiving was a quiet evening with the beau's folks and some family friends. Dinner was delicious and we capped off the evening with a rousing game of Ticket to Ride. I didn't mean to stomp everybody into the ground, but I got some lucky breaks with my railroad baron skills.

The weekend after Thanksgiving was the perfect time to get folks together for some physical activity and I chose LASER TAG. Oh my goodness! It was my first time playing and it was SO MUCH FUN. Actually, everybody had a blast, if you'll pardon me, and couldn't wait to do it again.

I closed out the month by decorating for Christmas because, in my world, one is allowed to pull out the Christmas stuff AFTER one has celebrated Thanksgiving.

Aunt Jan 11-2014

snowflake stampede


melaniesuzanne: (Me at SPWF2014 (by John T Riley))
December: This month has been filled with parties of various flavors. First there was Kerry and Jill's party, which was a fairly laid back affair. Then there was the cookie exchange party hosted my former neighbor Sam. She's been doing this for years and this was my first time for being able to attend. Oh my gracious, there were SO MANY cookies. I, myself, provided five dozen Lemon Crinkle Cookies. I don't know how big a hit they were with the others, but within my circle of friends they are like crack. (H/T to Kim for finding that recipe) Sadly, [ profile] rdhdsnippet and [ profile] scherzoid's solstice party was canceled due to illness, but since it was the same day as a DnD session, the beau and I stayed at James & Kim's with our buddies for a marathon game of Munchkin. The next day was another game of Munchkin at another friend's party. Wheeee!

A bittersweet gathering was the going-away party for some of the beau's friends. They're old SCA/gaming buddies of his and the wife of the couple landed her dream job on the west coast (which also happened to be their place of origin). I'd only just met them at the Labor Day party, but they're awfully good people and I'm sorry that I wasn't able to get to know them better. We drank beer and watched the Capitals stomp the tar out of the Blue Jay and reminisced about misspent youth.

On Christmas Eve, I dragged the beau out to look at some of the tackier light displays in Sterling. He pretends to be a curmudgeon about the holiday, but he enjoyed the kitsch and my enthusiasm. We also enjoyed a delicious dinner of honey-glazed ham, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and broccoli prepared by moiself and topped off with homemade pecan pie (also by moiself). We stayed up late watching "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" and "A Christmas Story", as you do.

Christmas morning dawned late and we skyped with my family as they tore open presents at my brother's home. It's the next best thing to being there. We had our own small gift exchange with me giving himself R2-D2 and C-3PO ornaments, a Cat-a-pult, an Itty Bitty Book of Kitties, and a Lego kart. He gifted me with a Lego movie set featuring WyldStyle, an adorable bike bag, reflective stars for my bike spokes, and a sterling mouse ring.

We spent the evening with his folks and family friends where we dined on more ham (I love ham at Christmastime), visited for ages, and tore into gifts. Tom and Lois were so thoughtful with the adorable stocking stuffers and gorgeous infinity scarf. I really wasn't expecting anything and that was incredibly sweet. They like me. :-)

And now, we come to New Year's Eve where I'm co-hosting a party with James, Kim and the beau (whose name is Sean, by the way). There will be delicious food, adult beverages, and a bevvy of games. I can't think of a better way to send off a great year and welcome in a shiny new one.

office tree 2014



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Mary F'ing Sunshine

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