Middle Eastern food?

20 July 2017 17:51
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[personal profile] cos posting in [community profile] davis_square
We were in Davis Square a couple of evenings ago when someone said they wanted Middle Eastern food. Other than Amsterdam Falafel, I couldn't think of anywhere right there. I know Sabur in Teele Sq, which is kind of Middle Eastern (and pretty fancy). Googling around didn't turn up anything else in Davis Square, though I found a Lebanese place on Mass Ave nearby which I don't remember trying. Anyone know of any Middle Eastern food in Davis Square, or others a short walk away that you like?
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[personal profile] avivasedai
- His vocabulary is huge; more than that, he uses phrases that he's trying out from various places and it's hilarious. For instance, "nice of you to notice" he's picked up from a Pooh and Eeyore story, where Eeyore loses his tail, and when Pooh brings all the friends around to try and help him find it, it's already found and reattached (though how a donkey with no opposable thumbs and no Christopher Robin managed to stick a pushpin into the tail, onto his butt, I don't know). Now Benito is trotting out that line at mostly appropriate points in conversation, and it's awesome.

- He loves changing the words to songs he knows, sometimes to other words, sometimes just using the wrong sounds. I alternate singing with him, so I'll sing "Lookin' for love and feeling -" and then point to him, so he can sing "Groovy!" I did this a few days ago, and he said "Soggy!" I cracked up, and so he's been doing that for days. He's also using different pronouns, so instead of "Ain't you got no rhymes for me," he'll say "us," which works when we're singing it together.

- He sings the shema by himself, very recognizably in both words and melody, as he is walking along the edge of his crib, making sure to go along the full 3 available edges from wall to wall, and hoisting himself over.

- Last night he asked for his blanket to be tucked in, like on Mom and Dad's bed. I found a knitted blanket that was big enough to tuck around the edges of his mattress, did so, and he put his blue blanket (that is only just as wide as the top of the mattress) on top, and then delighted in arranging his various crib companions around the bed (a Creeper, BB8, Hector the Spanish bull, 2 bunnies, and a few books). Also, he's using the little pillow that Carmen made for us, using brown cloth and the light teal shimmery ribbon from our wedding.

- I made a batch of chocolate mint chip cookies a little while ago. I had to tweak the recipe due to lack of the right kind of chocolate, so they weren't as deeply chocolatey as I had hoped, but they were quite good. The recipe made 39 cookies this time, so I took a dozen to work and my coworkers approved. Simon even said that they are his favorite cookie and I could bring them in any time. *grin* Benito likes them as well, and Rick will eat about 4 or maybe 6 for evening snack/dessert. It's the recipe I've posted here before, for reference.

I don't really have a lot of happy food recollections beyond that for the last bit of time. Hrm. That's a shame. Last night's fish dinner was fine, but it doesn't make me giddy, just fish with salt and Sunny Paris spice blend from Penzey's. Similarly, the roasted cauli was okay, not the best I've ever made, but good.

- French toast for dinner tonight! There is challah and it should be eaten with delight, where delight = maple syrup or possibly raspberry jam!

That's just barely 5 things; that last one doesn't exactly count as it's only a thought so far, not an actuality. Maybe it's time to bake something, as the cookies are gone... and if I use the rest of the gluten-free flour, I will absolutely not eat it, either... I like that idea... Supplies at home: 2 ripe bananas, and done. If I'm not eating it, Benito will be happy with simple and Rick will approve of me not going crazy with other non-chocolate additives (apricot, coconut, so forth).
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[personal profile] desireearmfeldt posting in [community profile] davis_square
Anyone else getting constant flyovers most days and (more annoying) 2-4 large, low, LOUD flyovers between 10:45 pm and midnight every night?

City of Somerville advises you to call Massport and also 311 to report your complaint: http://www.somervillema.gov/departments/programs/reporting-airplane-noise

Massport politely took my complaint and promised me a written report.  311 said "people should totally call us about issues, no one ever calls us!", politely took my complaint, and said that various elected officials (including Rosetti, Capuano and some third person I'm forgetting, possibly the mayor) have been trying to get this mitigated, but not necessarily to much effect.

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[personal profile] avivasedai
Thursday. This was not a day that was supposed to be spent travelling, but travel we did. Having gotten to the airport at 5:45 for our 7:20 *boarding* for the 7:50 AM flight, I discover at check-in that our flight has been bumped to 10:45. Oh my freakin' lord. It turns out after much checking of computer, that our best bet is to keep this flight, arrive in Chicago around 11:15 AM, and take the 5 PM flight to YVR, getting back in at 7 PM local time. They check our bags through so we're back to a reasonable amount to schlep all day (stroller, his rolling bag, my backpack). We eat breakfast, wander around a bit, get to our gate stupid early, and he watches Thomas episodes. Eventually we board, and I paid for us to sit in the seats with a bit more room. Our stewards were really great: the snack they gave was stroopwaffles, and when I said "oh my god I love these!" the woman came back mid-flight and gave me 3 more. (I'm hoarding them; I still have 1 left in my office.) When Benito started to fall asleep, another person brought me 2 blankets to use as pillows for him.

In Chicago, we had a LOT of time to kill. We walked around, saw shops, had lunch - oh, but not before I went looking for the Vosges Haute Chocolate place!! I love this chocolate, and I don't order it to get shipped to me because, after all, it is just chocolate, but if I'm here I'm sure as heck going to get some. I put together my purchases and hand them my debit card, which is a Visa card and has given me no trouble anywhere else in any other airport. Here, though, here, it will not read it. ARRRGGHHH!! I am so saddened! Woe is me, no chocolate to bring home! *sigh* I move along to get lunch, which is at least an hour overdue for me. (Benito had been eating leftovers of various sorts for the last hour.)

Lunch was a really tasty sandwich... I think; honestly it's not important except that it was good. We go back to our concourse, to what I think is our gate in another 3 hours - it has spacious empty floor space, great for Benito to roll his trains or for us to sit and use the Magnadoodle. He mostly watches the planes taxi-ing. I spot a solo dad with a younger toddler, perhaps 2. We exchange the kids' names, as parents seem to do. They wander, we stay put for another half-hour. I then go to check our actual gate and head that way. We're at the end of the terminal. I spot the same dad and kid at the windows, looking at planes, so we head that way, and as the kids play with trains the dad and I talk. After about 15 minutes, there's enough general information shared for him to realize that I'm family with the Ben with whom he grew up, and attended the same schools and first job, for 19 years!! He's heading from San Francisco to Pittsburgh to visit his family. I pass his name back to Ben so they can possibly meet up again and catch up on life. They've drifted apart in the last ... 13-15 years. Small world, eh? Quite ridiculous.

To end this long tale: we make it onto our flight cheerfully, get our good legroom seats again, Benito sleeps for about half the flight (I read a book!), we got home with no additional worries, we are happy to be home, and life resumed as normal on Friday.
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[personal profile] avivasedai
Remember way back when Benito and I went to Pittsburgh? Our return trip did not go exactly smoothly.

Wednesday morning through early afternoon was pretty darn good. The plan, after it was hashed out hilariously amongst 7 adults, was for Judy, Mom, Benito and I to go to Ben and Shayna's house, from where Judy could go to teach and Mom, Shayna, Benito and I could go to The Strip, a (completely above-board) shopping area. Thus it was, and we got there and met up with Ben for lunch at a delightful store with a food counter and seating upstairs. Wholey Market (not pronounced as it's spelled) is a beautiful place; Benito was captivated both by the large tanks of live fish and by the train going around a track way over his head. Our lunch was huge and delicious; keeping Benito upstairs while the adults finished was a bit of a challenge. After lunch, we wandered over to Penzey's, whose spice blends make me happy, and I'd be willing to buy more of their spices too if they were closer/I didn't have to pay shipping. Oh, the clerk told me they have a branch in Seattle, so maybe that will go on my list of things to visit in Seattle one of these days. (Hmm, only slightly more than 2 hrs away, north of Seattle...)

We looked around leisurely; I bought two spice blends, after considering a bunch of options, and we made our way back to the car. We went back to the house and I think we dropped Mom off, because Shayna and I drove around a bit more with Benito asleep in the back. We schmoozed, got to know each other a bit, had a good time. By 3 we were back at home, because that's when her babysitter was done. The little kids played, Mom and Aunt Judy drove back to Judy's, and around 3:15 I checked in to my flight online. Huh - it seems that my 7 PM flight has been bumped to 7:45, which means it's getting in to Denver 15 minutes before my connecting flight to YVR is supposed to leave. *gulp* Basically, we rush out the door (her youngest 2 and my guy in tow) to see if I can get to the airport in time for the 5 PM flight instead. Nope; I got there at 4:30 and the other flight was already boarding before I checked in. American Airlines then rebooked me onto United Airlines (*collective groan*), who had room on a flight leaving at 5:45 if they'd let me onto it.

Note: I had a toddler and his stroller, 2 rolling bags, my backpack, and his carseat. An AA attendant helped me run over to the UA counter to talk to the people there, who were basically rude and unhelpful. The main person who spoke with me said that if I made it to the gate, and if the flight wasn't delayed, and if they let me board, then I would be able to make my connection, but she couldn't guarantee any of those things, because air traffic control was keeping everyone late, and since it was air traffic control doing it, the airline would not pay for a hotel room for me if I became stranded in the connecting airport. Oh, also, if I did get on their flight right now, it was too late to check bags so I'd have to take everything with me. The stroller would get gate-checked, our two carry-ons are fine, my backpack is my "personal item," and the carseat he could sit on.

I booked it to the gate, with all that rolling stuff. There was, of course, a big line to talk to the gate agents, because everyone was being thrown off their schedules and had to make arrangements. I tried to appease Benito, who was itching to get out of the stroller and play, that we just had to be patient, we couldn't get in the front of the line because all these other people had to talk to the gate agents too. I actually went to the gate next to us, which was empty except for the gate attendant, and asked if it was likely I'd make this flight. She looked at my tickets, looked at her computer, and said "Hmm, it looks like you're not booked to sit next to your son. I can fix that for the next flight but you need to talk to these gate agents to fix this flight." Ugh. I got back in the first line. The guy I was behind said "go ahead and stand at the front, someone will let you in because you need help." I did, and someone did, so I stood in front of the male gate attendent. I let Benito out of his stroller and he starts playing on the row of empty seats next to us, with a few people bemusedly watching him crawl and meow.

First, before even making eye contact with me, he looks at the guy at the front of the line and says "Are you okay with this woman getting in front of you?" Yes, he is, he let me in. Then he says to me "Don't stand to the side, stand right in front of me." Okay, older gentleman, just trying to keep my 3 year old in sight. I give him our passports and tickets and ask if he can sit us together. He immediately says "There are no seats together." I start to cry, holding it in as much as possible. I say "I have to sit next to my son; he's 3." The guy makes a tight face and works at his computer, and gives us seats together in the last row. He then gets on the intercom and calls for another individual to come to the front. Okay; I'm not going to feel bad for that.

I sit, and after taking a few deep breaths, realize the better option is to call customer service and get them to rebook me for tomorrow. After a few calls and ~15 minutes on hold, we are rebooked for Thursday morning at 7:20 AM. I use Messenger to contact Ben and Shayna, asking them to contact my parents b/c I'm not using my phone in the US. After much effort, my parents come to pick us up. When we arrive at my aunt and uncle's, Benito enters the house and says "I'm back!" in a delighted tone. We have a late dinner, sack out for the night by 9:45, and are on the road back to the airport by 5:15 AM.


17 July 2017 13:28
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[personal profile] mizarchivist
Fairy Spa Parent.
Need to go deal with maintenance on all the femme things. My epidermis, cuticles, and follicles are deeply under-cared for, but to go do ALL THE THINGS might require a small business loan. So, please send Fairy Spa Parent, stat.
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[personal profile] mem_winterhill posting in [community profile] davis_square
I'm sensing a new civic engagement period underway--which I hope will persist. But it may be instructive to hear about previous periods of this as well.

Via Mike Connolly on twitter: https://twitter.com/MikeConnollyMA/status/885681479883395072


TL,DR + Event details: Historians, 60s activists, current activists will speak to activism in our area and in their eras. "There’s one more treat in store: In addition to panel discussions, there will be a free custom ice cream flavor from Toscanini’s made in honor of the 1960s." I have no idea what 60s ice cream is.

July 29
11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
lecture hall of the Cambridge Main Library
449 Broadway, Mid-Cambridge

I just f'in love what I do.

13 July 2017 17:02
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[personal profile] avivasedai
We're holding drop-in advising for the start of the registration period for Fall 2017. Today, I've seen three students, and had 1 chatty conversation with my associate dean beforehand.

The first student had only 5 courses to go, all of which will be to fulfill the requirements of her minor. She'd seen my fellow advisor before and still had her program planning guide with all his notes, plus the progress she'd made since then. I'm pretty impressed with that, as we rarely see the students who keep up with those advising notes. She's on track to graduate by the end of either this fall or spring, depending on how many courses she wants to take at once.

The second student has finished all of the courses in her applied geography major and had a plan for the upcoming term, including some horticulture courses about urban ecology, and landscape and the environment. I noticed the teacher of one of the HORT courses is the coordinator of our Policy Studies (in sustainability) program. I asked the student if she'd want to take one of those POST courses as electives, and she said she doesn't like political science. I explained that really, they're not political science courses, they are policy studies as it relates to sustainability. Ah, she said, I didn't know that! The program doesn't include "sustainability" in its name, so she hadn't looked any further at it. I showed her the courses and the minor in more depth, and it actually fits into the elective spots she has left, and she is newly invigorated towards finishing her degree. It's better to have courses you like and fit into your long-term goals and career path than random electives that might have something to offer but not really fit holistically.

The third student is done with her first year, and wants to go into elementary education. We don't offer that program but we regularly bring in the reps from the education programs in our region to talk about how to get to them. (Students need a BA first, then take the B. Ed. in an additional 18 months, give or take.) I helped her look at how to fulfill the requirements of those programs, as well as identified a handful of courses to take in the next year that might be of interest, such as Intro to Educational Psychology, Developmental Psyc: Childhood and Developmental Psyc: Adolescence. She hadn't known of those before, she has the prepreqs for all of them. She also needs math upgrading so we found the one she needs. She now has a good idea of what to take for the next 2 semesters or so and will come back after that for more discussion.

The discussion I had with my associate dean is the perfect set-up to this morning. Our conversation wandered, because we both have that multi-track, easily tangented active brain tendency. It ended with how we define what we do, in a very broad way (that could be understood by, let's say, a 3 year old). I help people, as does she: we are people persons. I help people make decisions. She went on: I am a cartographer, a map-maker. I help people make the decisions that can lead them to being happy with their lives. Cartographer is a wonderful way to think of it: making maps is about more than laying out a path, or even "simply" pointing one out. It's about looking at the landscape as a whole, knowing the adventurer's strengths and weaknesses, and giving them the tools to choose the best path themselves. Right?

It's a pretty good job. I'm lucky I fell into it.
[personal profile] ron_newman posting in [community profile] davis_square
Because of threatened rain tomorrow night, the Friday night part of ArtBeat, in Seven Hills Park, will instead take place Saturday night, after the regularly scheduled Saturday daytime ArtBeat events.

Full information here: http://somervilleartscouncil.org/artbeat/2017

Flood issues in Medford

12 July 2017 20:44
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[personal profile] gingicat posting in [community profile] davis_square
Hello, this is Captain Barry Clemente with an informational message. DPW will be working during the night due to the rain and flooding. They are available at 781-393-2445 and will respond to any flooding in the streets. If you have an emergency, call 911. Thank-you.
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[personal profile] mizarchivist
OMG, you guys. I'm living in a house that I (co-)own. I admit I'm having some sense of denial and some imposter syndrome, and wondering what MY stuff is doing in Jeanne's house, but whatever. We're getting there. I went out this morning and picked black raspberries before breakfast. I keep re arranging stuff that can't be put away yet. But my bed is in a frame and there are some movable drawers with my clothes in them in my room. I have an office with a door that shuts. It's a box maze, but it's mine. [personal profile] fubar set up the TV and it works! I set up Pandora and hung out in the living room listening to music with [livejournal.com profile] samuraizergling last night. It was so civilized! I got to help new neighbor Anne Michelle rescue her car. She watched The Kid on Sunday for a few hours. It's like... a THING. I chatted with my next door neighbor, who's really nice. It's quiet. So... yeah. I have survived.

Please ping me if you want my new street address. I'm going to be sending out an update email here soon.

Also: Tomorrow the kid has eye surgery. I'm only a bit nervous about that.

Part 3: Never enough time...

10 July 2017 12:24
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[personal profile] avivasedai
After the lunch at shul on Saturday, the next announced thing was dinner at my aunt and uncle's. Benito and I went back with them, and while B watched some Thomas, I started helping my aunt cut up fruit and platter things. My parents came over around 3 so my mom could help in the kitchen also. Tahl arrived with Ilan and his gf, and Tahl's childhood friend J and her two boys, to take all the young'uns out to a nearby park, so the final prep for the party could happen without too many people underfoot. We met up with my cousin and his family and hung out until party-time. Benito did some awesome jungle-gym climbing and exploring, which I always admire. He did get kinda stuck up high on a platform from which the only ways down were a climbing wall, a fireman's pole, or the very wide Seussian-style stair/bridge he'd used to get up on it. He did not like any of these options, so I ended up climbing half-way up the wall with Ilan spotting me, and I held Benito and passed him down to Ilan. *grin*

The party was the family plus a few close friends of my aunt and uncle, with cold cuts, salads, fruit, and TWO cakes at the end, one for Lila's 9th birthday and one for G'ma Shirley's ... birthday of some year I can't be bothered to do the math I think it's 87? One cake was chocolate, one was a yellow cake, both had gobs of frosting, so the kids were happy. There were also some pecan pies which disappeared quickly (fine with me, diabetic coma on a plate!) and a tofu cheesecake that was a donation from a guest and was later tossed. A few times our generation managed to stand together and be silly for 5-10 minutes at a time before our various kids or other needs made us wander away again; I had to give Benito his bath around 8 PM to try and wind him down for the night, and basically stared out the window at my siblings and cousins talking in the driveway, and other people sitting around a table on the back porch... *sad sigh from the past* I wanted Ilan to come up and talk with me while Benito entertained himself, but no, we had our 15-20 minutes of bath time and got him into pajamas and back to the party. It was great seeing B, plus Ben's 3 girls, plus J's two boys, plus Gadi's 3 kids, playing together. I think we wrapped things up around 10, maybe?

Sunday I've already mentioned in the illness post, but the non-illness parts: My aunt, uncle, Benito and I arrived at 9 for the 10 AM party to help set up. Benito fell asleep in the car on the way over, so I stayed with him and let him sleep as long as possible, which was until 9:50 and the arrival of some of our guests. We went in to the large anteroom/hallway outside the half of a conference type space we were using; we got the stage part, so various kids had fun with that! The party was from 10-2. Everyone was there by about 10:15, and Aunt Judy quickly kicked off the speech-making by calling on Ilan to say something, as he and his gf were leaving at 11 to catch a 12 PM bus back to NYC. *sadness* He spoke, then the next and the next person, talking about my parents, the other anniversary couple, and Esther's bat mitzvah. Ilan and I tried to take a moment to talk, but were interrupted within 2 minutes by Benito coming over to demand my attention. When it came time to Ilan to leave, Gadi's son, who is 7, started to cry, and when I went to my knee to give him a hug, he said "I don't want Dod Ilan to leave." Oh honey, me neither! I held him and let us be sad together.

That was definitely a theme for me: not enough time with any of my family, because it was all of us at once, and we were there for someone else's gig that had its own schedule. There is never going to be "enough time" in that circumstance. Time spent 1-on-1 is not the same as 3 siblings or more together, and the 1-on-1 is so damn rare, particularly for me these days. Ilan has spent the most amount of time with the twins since their birth; I understand wanting to cry when he left.

Ilan and gf left, more speeches, then finally some brunch! Benito ate during the speeches so was back to running around while I tried to eat; it took me at least 2 hours to eat a meal's worth of food, up until they started packing food away at the end. Benito ate: plain noodles. Love that kid. *sigh* When it was my turn to speak, I said how I had learned from my parents, as well as my aunt and uncle, the core Jewish value of hospitality, hachnasat orchim - giving of your home and your resources to your guests. I didn't even realize it was a Jewish thing until I started teaching my Hebrew school kids; it was just how I was raised, and a core value of mine now. My siblings were well-spoken, and I'm glad someone was video recording b/c I can't remember exactly what they said, just that it was nicely done. Tahl led us in singing "Our Love is Here to Stay," which pointed out how many people don't know all of the lyrics.

This ended around 1; Tahl came back to the house with us as she was going to be staying with us Sunday and Monday nights, and leaving Tuesday mid-day. What she and I didn't know is that by going there, we took ourselves out of the roller-skating party for the bat mitzvah girl. I thought the grandparents were automatically going; I was wrong! Therefore, Tahl, Benito and I got a relaxing afternoon in instead of hilarity at the roller rink. Ah well, I was looking forward to putting some form of skates on the toddler. That will have to wait. Sunday evening was leftovers for dinner and getting in a few deep breaths at the ending of festivities.

Monday I discussed previously: Benito slowly got over his fever, and by Tuesday was chipper again. More in the next installment.
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[personal profile] mem_winterhill posting in [community profile] davis_square
I just found out about this meeting, which includes a citizen science project about urban wildlife.


We will be joined by Megan Whatton, Habitat Network Project Manager with The Nature Conservancy at 7:00 p.m. Habitat Network is a collaboration between The Nature Conservancy and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology in a citizen science project to bring people together to explore the collective impact transforming yards and urban spaces into more diverse habitat can have on wildlife and the nature around us. Megan Whatton the Project manager for the Conservancy will introduce this program, demo its use, and the application and benefit a program like this can have on those living and working in the Mystic River Watershed.


We meet at Tufts University, Jonathon M. Tisch College of Citizenship & Public Service, Lincoln Filene Hall, Rabb Room, 10 Upper Campus Road, Medford, MA 02155

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[personal profile] elramsay posting in [community profile] davis_square
 Landscaping with Novel Native Shrubs
Professor Jessica Lubell will give a presentation on native shrubs that are adaptable to tough conditions — such as the readily available Rhus and Juniperus, as well as lesser-known taxa like Aronia, Diervilla, Prunus, Myrica, Corylus, and Spiraea. She will discuss her wide-ranging research on this subject, including controlled studies on the adaptability of native shrubs, and improved methods of nursery propagation to increase the availability of native taxa. This talk will be enlightening to all who landscape with natives. Dr. Jessica Lubell is an Associate Professor of Horticulture at the University of Connecticut, with 15 years of experience working with the horticulture industry. 
All Somerville Garden Club meetings are free and open to the public.  In addition to the lecture, there will be the usual Q and A and raffle. 7-9pm. Meetings are held the at the Tufts Administration Building, (TAB),167 Holland Street, second floor, wheelchair accessible. Parking is available, and the building is a ten-minute walk from the Davis Square MBTA stop.

Also, Stop by and see us at ArtBeat, Saturday, July 15. We'll be in Seven Hills Park.
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[personal profile] dougo posting in [community profile] davis_square
Frozen Hoagies, the ice cream & cookie shop on Broadway in Powderhouse Square, has been selling day-old cookies at three for a dollar, or six for a dollar later in the evening. And lately they've had quite a lot still left by the end of the day. I asked what they do with two-day-old cookies, and was told "I think we throw them away". I almost bought the whole basketful but I was too embarrassed! Anyway, in my experience cookies can stay fresh enough for at least a week in a cookie jar, so it seems a shame for these to go to waste.

(no subject)

9 July 2017 21:00
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[personal profile] curly_chick
Not hiking sucks but if I had to choose a time for it to happen, this is a good one. Although intellectually I know I can hike again once I am better it is hard to imagine. On the other hand, being around more has led to me spontaneous activities which have made me super happy.

Ahhhh Ants

9 July 2017 17:49
[personal profile] antproblems posting in [community profile] davis_square
I live near Davis Square, and I've recently realized that I've got a carpenter ant problem - the little jerks came out of nowhere, and now they're exploring all over my apartment. They are not focused on any one area (no trail to follow), and they are concentrated in a few rooms (with crummy windows), so I think the nest may be outside. Any recommendations to go back to an ant-free existence?
Edit to add: I do have a cat, and would prefer not to poison her.
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[personal profile] cassandra_beach posting in [community profile] davis_square
I didn't have time to stop but it looks like there is a Casper mattress pop up store (or showroom) in the parking lot across from the Rosebud diner. Did I misread the sign and this is something else?

If this is a pop up store.... um... WTF? I recall a food truck set up in that space a while back and while there are some issues with that (like competing with bricks + mortar stores) ... that is pretty different than a mattress store.

Anyone have any info on this?


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