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Feb 22, 2014

Glass Harp
last update: 02/22 @ 20:58
 Ian and “his” Sarah came out to Alexandria for a quick visit while he was in town. We took advantage of the great weather (60 degrees while the last of the snow fort melts) to walk down to the river. And we had the good fortune to run into the glass harp guy (Jamey Turner).

Feb 20, 2014

A Little Help Reading the Paper
last update: 02/20 @ 20:29
 Not much more to say really. Sarah back from work and dinner and really just wanting to relax and read the paper. Panzer not having any of it. Clearly his paper and he’s going to be doing the reading.

Feb 13, 2014

Sled Jumping
last update: 02/13 @ 20:29
 Robert showing off his Olympic style moves on the jump at the Masonic Temple sled slope this afternoon.

We had lots of fun and it was not too cold (which meant the snow was pretty wet and thick). And we ran into Julia, Ivey, Cashius and their parents (who moved a few blocks away, unfortunately no longer on our block).

We also ran into Robert’s mentor from school, Evan the fifth grader, getting big air as well:

 You can see there had been a lot of folks on the slope — not was well maintained as the Olympic slopes (no matter what they say).

It was a fun afternoon.

last update: 02/13 @ 20:22
 We tried to set a good example and go to our local hill, the Masonic Temple (AKA Castle Roberto) for our sledding today to stay off the roads and let the plows do their work.

The light drizzle stopped this afternoon and the snow was OK — clearly well used. It started snowing again later in the afternoon.

We’re expecting temperatures to drop below freezing soon, so the slushy snow will make for a frozen base.

 Robert stopped just shy of the drop off to the sidewalk and street — but he tried hard to get that far.

That’s me avoiding the jump (but getting closer to the trees than I wanted).

And Sarah’s sitting upright style while bypassing the jump, with Robert in the background.

 We’ve heard that Robert’s school (and pretty much all the schools) will be closed tomorrow. Now we’re waiting on that 4 am call by OPM to see if we both get to stay home or if Sarah has to go to her new job and I get to stay home with Robert (And the sleds).

The Snow is Here
last update: 02/13 @ 10:59
 We got about 6 inches of well expected snow overnight. Too bad the temps are rising and it’s raining just a little bit. Not enough rain to slow down the snow fort builder!

OK, so he had some help in getting that buried in his fort.

The forecast is for a bit more snow over the next 24 hours (if the temperatures cooperate).

Usually OPM waits until 4 am to decide on the status of the DC area federal agencies; this time, with the storm clearly coming up the coast and dumping lots of snow in its path, we knew at 9:45 (not too much later than Robert’s school announced it would be closed).

 We’re waiting to see how quickly it can be cleared up and how much more we get: school tomorrow? not likely. Work tomorrow? a bit more likely…

And of course we’re waiting to see how long the snow fort lasts…

Feb 02, 2014

Breaking the Ice
last update: 02/02 @ 16:48
 You really can’t see a cool overhang of ice like that and not have it call out to you to break it off.

There were no signs saying don’t molest the ice. (At least, none visible from the water.)

And while it was pretty, you can’t argue it was anything other than ephemeral.

And really, sort of dangerous: a small kid might be tempted to climb up on top.

So we did our part to keep small children safe and removed this particular temptation.

 It was fun to break it down.

And very satisfying.

Oh yeah, and it sounded cool too!

Sometimes it is very rewarding to help protect the younger generation like that.

And of course, there were lots of cool ice bergs and cliffs — we didn’t break them all. Hard to say what will happen with the ice next; it was 60 today and talk of snow tomorrow.

Warmer Still…
last update: 02/02 @ 16:37
 … up to 60 degrees today. Hard not to take advantage of that warmth in February. We decided to venture out and take advantage of the new floating dock we discovered last weekend (back in the snow and icy days).

Jones Point park really is a nice place now, thanks to all the work done as part of the new Woodrow Wilson bridge.

We paddled around a bit, broke up some ice bergs, rode some ice bergs and saw the Jones Point Lighthouse from a new view.

 And we noticed a cool plate tectonics demonstration: the tide was going out and we saw this sheet of ice sliding over the other sheet as it headed out to sea with the tide (carrying us with it for a little while).

We were curious what was going to happen when the top sheet hit that extra chunk of ice attached to the bottom sheet. The top one broke up a bit before loosening the chunk and sweeping it along.

We saw one channel marker stuck in the ice and were thinking about rescuing it. But I got spooked watching it getting pulled under the ice, so we abandoned the rescue mission and returned to opener water.

 We stayed aware of where the ice was, which way it was going and where our out was as we paddled around in it. And we were never threatened by being stuck in the ice — but we weren’t able to get around the bridge piling we were trying to sneak around.

Probably most impressive was how quickly it changed as we helped to free some huge chunks to float down on the tide.

Feb 01, 2014

last update: 02/01 @ 20:43
 … it got up to 50 degress today. But we still found a fair amount of snow walking around Potomac Overlook park (which no longer has an overlook due to growing vegetation). It was very nice to get out in the sun and enjoy the warmth. Tomorrow is supposed to be close to 60; we are talking about taking the canoe out ice breaking. More news here if we do that.

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