Friday, April 29, 2011
Monday, June 29, 2009
I would like to write about a topic that's been on my mind quite a lot: why geese honk while they fly. This seems like a logical question, for after all, it's hard to run and scream at the same time. The only time I've seen that happen consistently is in an action scene in the movies. From this I must conclude that geese having been watching too many movies, and have grown a bit too melodramatic for their own good, or that they feel themselves always threatened.
Yes, I would like to write about that, but I can't, seeing the paralysis that is this dissertation, the fact that i think about it all the time (when I'm not thinking about the geese). I would be lying if I said that the last few weeks have been lovely. They have actually been horrific. I have spent many, many, many hours locked in a freezing cubicle at the public library attempting to have scholarly thoughts -- and more important -- scholarly organizational skills. And while I am meeting with some success with both, I feel like this experience is forcing every hardship, insecurity, inconvenience, and negative feeling onto my last nerve, which is. on. fire. all. the. time.
I am lovely to be around right now.
I actually cried today over it. I sat in my office while a babysitter corralled my screaming, happy children downstairs, and cried over the fact that I seem not to have the mental faculties to get this done as quickly as I'd hoped. How quickly is that, you say? I dunno. Like yesterday.
So bear with me. I'd ask you to bear for me, but that's called plagiarism, and it's not so cool. And besides, the silver lining is that I see the purpose in this dastardly exercise called "dissertating." It sucks, but I'm learning something.
Sigh. Back to the grind.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
1) I taught my last course for the semester, graded a stack of papers (the majority of which deserved shredding and tossing into the compost pile, yet I care too much about my compost), and spent time doing the usual "quibbling with students about grades and doing senseless grade-related math" routine.
2) Micah, my most lovely little infant elf, turned one! Pictures, you say! Yes, I know, I know. I'm getting there. The time was nice, many family members came into town to celebrate, and unlike his older brother, there was no cake-puking post cake-gorging. I consider this a small, yet significant, victory.
3) Brian graduated with his MBA. I cannot tell you what a huge, major relief this is. Brian has been gone every other weekend (sometimes more) for the past two years doing this degree, and we see him little enough with his work schedule (Micah goes to bed 1.5 hours after Brian gets home from work, if this puts anything into perspective). So getting him back on the weekends puts everyone at ease. EVERYONE (**vein in my neck still bulging**).
4) I have agreed to teach a course on Islam in the fall in addition to the usual World Religion courses that I've been teaching, and I've been doing prep on that. Should be very interesting.
5) After the graduating and birthday-ing, we disappeared over the long holiday weekend to visit family in the Ozarks, which is always interesting. But more on that later.
6) And today? Today is the start of a new kind of busy-ness. What is it, you ask? I'm glad you inquired.
Today, I start my dissertation again.
The babysitter should be here in about 15 minutes, and with that I will pack my computer and some books, and I will vacate the premises, off to the library to attempt something scholarly. This is a big day. I would be none too melodramatic to say that I feel like this is a "first day of the rest of your life" day, as finishing this sucker could line up a lot of stuff that has been, well, unaligned. It needs to get done. And so I hope today is the start of that finishing process.
And thus I appreciate -- solicit -- your kind thoughts, words, prayers, petitions to deities and other spiritual powers, small gifts, and small bills -- ANYTHING to keep me going. I have never had anything dangling over my head this long, and to be honest, the dangling must stop! Of course, I must remind myself that I have never had three children and an unfinished Ph.D. before. But it is not like me not to finish something I said I would. So for emphasis, for dramatic value, for the sheer weight of the words, let me say it here:
I WILL FINISH!
Whew. Feeling better now. Time to pack the computer.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Please remember that, the next time that your children are invited to a birthday party/kid event at one of those inflatable jumpy-slidy-thing places, you should do the following:
a) First, please plan a workout regimen, ideally starting approximately 9 mos. before said party occurs. The reason for this is simple: your body is not used to being flung around, climbing intertube-like walls, and being slammed against inflated barriers at the end of very large slides. And your flexibility has begun to suck lately, too. So while being svelte and muscular won't fix the offense of being tossed around, perhaps you could look a little more proficient at inflatable kid boot camp. It's not so cool, after all, to be so winded that you can't talk after going down the slide, to come out the other end kissing the solid ground, rolled into a tight ball praying for the muscle spasm to stop. Or maybe while inside the inflatable, you could just flex one of your bodacious biceps and in looking at your muscles, everyone's glance will be pulled away from the glaring fact that you are beached atop an inflatable mountain with no hope of rescue crews anytime soon. In addition to the previously mentioned un-coolness, it is also not so cool to have been stranded so long inside the inflatable that to the three, four, and five year olds climbing over and on you, you have merely become part of the attraction ("Look, mom! I climb up this wall, I jump on that lady, and then I go down the slide!").
b) Second, and perhaps most important, please remember to wear your best underwear. Because everyone will see it as you climb into the inflatable jumpy-slidy things to rescue any number of children who at that moment are claiming that you are their mother. And because, when you're suffering the indignity of looking like the aforementioned beached whale, the "accretion formally known as Leslie", at least your undies will look pretty.
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
This was a trio of (obviously) matching tee shirts given at Christmas by aunt Erica and uncle Darren, whose trip to a Disney establishment (if I remember correctly) prompted the purchase of these matching tees. Cole has shown some dismay at not being able to wear the "Thing 1" shirt (so that he would be #1), nor the "Thing 3" shirt (since he is 3 years old). Sucks to be in the middle sometimes.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
I say my overwhelming addiction to coffee rather than caffiene because I now believe myself to be over the latter. We spent last week in Springfield visiting family, and I chose that time when good coffee is hard, if not impossible, to find in the homes in which we were staying to get off of caffiene and handle the headaches while grandparents were around.
After all, my doctor had mentioned that caffiene was not a good choice for a migraine sufferer, as it is a well-known headache trigger. I wasn't entirely disturbed by this news, since I like coffee much more than I like caffiene, and I palate decaf relatively well. But I will admit being a bit confused by my sensitivity to caffiene. I really never drank more than two cups a day. Really. I mean, when I was pregnant I was always told that that was an entirely acceptable amount to drink (although I was always too chicken), and have been told by many other medical professionals that that particular amount of coffee was fine. Just two cups. So why all of the headaches? The jitters that came on even when I had eaten? Did coffee *gulp* hate me?
I was pondering this as I was dumping the (decaf) grounds out of my french press yesterday. In doing this I also thought about my habit of pushing the plunger only halfway down when I get the first cup, so that the second cup can continue to get really good and gritty and dark. And how I leave it in the press for a LOOOOONNNNNGGGGG time so that it's really, really dark. And how I like dark coffee so much that if it weren't entirely texturally gross, I'd probably eat coffee beans.
And then I realized that the way that I'm making coffee, I'm drinking what is probably the equivalent of 7-8 espresso shots at a time.
Yeah, that'll do it.