Friday, December 30, 2005
The holiday break has been very nice so far. I got to spend some time at homehome with most of the family and I got to spend some time with just Mom and Dad too. I didn't get much schoolwork done over break (surprise, surprise), but I did manage to get a few Christmas presents finished. (I knitted a few stocking hats and a few scarves this year.) I got quite a bit of rest over the break and--save a sore back and a trip to the chiropractor after Christmas--had a generally wonderful break.
Jimmy's currently in New Orleans (putting new roofs on houses), so I'm going to go see him over New Years. We'll get to celebrate in the city....
Sunday, December 18, 2005
This is probably my last blog for a while as I'm getting packed up and ready to go homehome for Christmas. I think I'm ready for a few weeks of the peace and joy that comes with being deprived of computers and technology. I had hoped to leave a few days ago, but some snowy weather and a pesky cough and cold have delayed my departure a bit. Hopefully I'll be able to get homehome tomorrow.
I could ramble on about the events of the past several days, but I think I'd rather just wish everyone a Merry Christmas instead....
Thursday, December 15, 2005
I've been trying to catch up on things during the past few days. Everything tends to get neglected during the last couple of weeks during the semester, so it's time to recuperate from the end of the semester. I've been eating and sleeping on a somewhat regular schedule, my apartment is looking somewhat cleaner than it has in a while, and my car went in for an oil change and general check-up this afternoon. I did some of my Christmas shopping yesterday, so I slept in late this morning to recuperate from shopping. (In case you didn't know, I don't like shopping much....) Anyway, now I'm starting to get things ready to go homehome (homehome is where Mom and Dad live) for the break; I haven't made any definite plans yet, but I think I might leave on Saturday....
Monday, December 12, 2005
Sunday, December 11, 2005
Friday, December 09, 2005
Our department Christmas Party was at noon today. We had a nice little lunch and visited for a while. The Christmas Party at my church is tonight. There will be a supper and gift exchange and all sorts of other fun stuff. I might go out and do some Christmas shopping this afternoon. I don't particularly like shopping and Christmas shopping's even worse then normal because of the crowds, but I might go out anyway; I know I have a few rolls of film that I need to take in for developing.
Thursday, December 08, 2005
Wednesday, December 07, 2005
Monday, December 05, 2005
Friday was a lot of fun. I spent the afternoon reading books and cleaning house (which is a wonderful method of productive procrastination). Janet came through town in the evening and took Jimmy and I out for supper. We went to a little British place (British in atmosphere, not necessarily cuisine) that's tucked away in a little corner in the middle of town. After supper we went back to my apartment and played some Scrabble and Trivial Pursuit. (It was nice to play Scrabble with a mediator present; Jimmy and I tend to argue when we play Scrabble with just the two of us. Janet won the game too; she uses big words.)
Saturday was a rather fuzzy and overcast day. I did homework, but that's really about all. Jimmy and I went to a theatre production in the evening: The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde. I'd seen the play before, but this production was still quite good. (Jimmy seemed to enjoy the show too. He certainly liked it better than the opera.)
And Sunday was spent reading books and grading papers. I haven't finished all the reading that I need to do for my projects, but I did manage to finish grading all of the major projects that my students produced this semester. I still have a stack of shorter things to grade, but all the big things are graded.
So now today is Monday...and the last day of classes for the semester. I met with my students this morning for our last set of presentations, and I returned all of the papers that I graded yesterday. Now I need to finish the last of the grading and get started writing all of my papers....
Thursday, December 01, 2005
Wednesday, November 30, 2005
Tuesday, November 29, 2005
Monday, November 28, 2005
Thanksgiving break was nice. Jimmy and I got to spend several days at home with Mom and Dad; most of the family came home only for Thanksgiving Day. We had the big family dinner...turkey and stuffing and pumpkin pie and all that stuff. I took books and homework with me over break, but I didn't get much of anything done (which, by the way, isn't too surprising). The only problem is that I still have a lot of work to do this week....
I've been working on my portfolio today. I have all of the materials, but I just need to organize them so I can find everything. I think I may have to add a trip to Staples to today's agenda in order to get more supplies.
Monday, November 21, 2005
I spent most of the weekend attempting to recover from this past week. I finally feel like I've recovered from the general lack of sleep that accompanies paper writing.... The weekend wasn't all spent catching up on zzz's. Jimmy and I went to an early showing of Harry Potter on Friday night, and then we went to a little coffee shop and spent the rest of the evening playing Killer Bunnies. (It's a cool game. Check out the link.) Saturday was a lazy day. I got my hair cut again--took off about another inch this time. And Jimmy and I spent the evening playing Killer Bunnies. Sunday was relatively relaxing too. Jimmy and I had supper at with his mom and brother, went to Mass at the Newman Center, and then spent the rest of the evening playing Killer Bunnies. And now it's Monday...and I've done all of my laundry and I'm almost packed and ready to go home....
Anyway, I'm retreating home to the land of no internet...I'll blog again when I return to the world of technology sometime next week/weekend....
Friday, November 18, 2005
Thursday, November 17, 2005
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
"So the difference between a male and a female is like the difference between an abacus and a modern computer. The abacus gets the job done, just fine. It's simple and effective. It never breaks down, and if it did, a moron could fix it. A modern computer can multi-task infinitely, but it breaks down all the time, and it takes a trained specialist to even take it apart. The greater the complexity, the more inherently unstable the system."
One thing I'd like to add to this evaluation: even though highly complex systems can frequently be fixed only by professionals (or sometimes these systems are fixed by simply restarting them) men still nearly always insist on dissecting these systems and taking them apart, determined that they can solve the problems....
Monday, November 14, 2005
I've spent most of today in the office. I had a meeting this afternoon and then it was back to work. I think I have most of the evening free, save a few pages to write. I'll probably bake a few pies tonight since I have pumpkin in the refridgerator and I'm not sure how long it will keep. I need to track down a recipe for pumpkin bread too; I don't think I have Mom's recipe for that on hand. (Plus, I don't really like pumpkin stuff anyway. I make it more for other people than for myself. I probably never asked Mom for her recipe since it's not among my favorite things anyway. I do have her poppyseed bread recipe, which makes a very yummy loaf of bread.)
Saturday, November 12, 2005
Today turned out to be a rather busy day for a Saturday. This morning we had a women's retreat at church. The retreat was rather small, but it was still good. I'd been helping to organize the retreat, so I was still trying to make sure everything went smoothly. Everything went well, and I think most of the girls found the morning to be time well spent.
Janet, one of my sisters, was traveling through town today, so she took Jimmy and I out to lunch. We looked at pictures from her latest trip and just chatted and had a good time. We didn't do anything too exciting, but we still had a pleasant afternoon.
I cooked up a pumpkin and a squash this evening. I plan on making pies (and maybe a bread too) sometime within the next few days. I roasted the pumpkin seeds and managed to do so without burning them. Janet brought me a whole bag of peppers (4 different kinds, I think), so I probably need to either string them so they can dry or learn how to make salsa within the next few days.
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
Still reading Twain...and I'm enjoying each new book more than the last. Pudd'nhead Wilson is a good read; it's relatively brief and entertaining too. Today's been relatively uneventful. I've spent most of the afternoon reading and doing research. I'm planning on spending the evening--or what will be left of it after class--grading papers so I can return them to my students tomorrow morning.
Monday, November 07, 2005
We went to see The Legend of Zorro on Saturday night. I was mildly disappointed with the film as it was a little too 'Disney' for my taste. (I'm using 'Disney' as an adjective here as the film wasn't made by that corporation.) The movie was entertaining and the plot was generally good, but the humor was a little too trite and predictable. The first Zorro movie was better.
On Friday, we went to see Jarhead. I didn't know much about the movie before we went, but I liked the film. (I generally like war films.) Based on the few descriptions of the movie that I'd heard prior to going to the theatre, I was expecting something of a cross between Full Metal Jacket and Apocalypse Now. The first scene in the movie looked like it came straight out of FMJ and there were numerous references to AN, but the movie certainly held its own. Jarhead didn't have the violent battle scenes like either of the other two movies; instead it showed more of the psychological battles that the soldiers fought within themselves. The movie was still pretty rough (language, content, etc.), but I liked it nonetheless. (My new rule for war movies: You know it's going to be a good war movie when people are leaving the theatre before the opening credits are over.) Anyway, I saw a copy of the book Jarhead when I was browsing through the bookstore in the mall the other day. Maybe I'll pick up a copy and read it over Christmas break....
Friday, November 04, 2005
I'm not sure what my plans are for my Friday. (YAY it's Friday!!) I have some papers that I need to grade and some research that I need to do over the weekend, but I'm not sure I want to devote my Friday to schoolwork. I think I might go to one of the local used book stores and wander around for a while; I have a few books that I need, and maybe I'll be lucky enough to find them there so I don't have to pay full price at the university bookstore.
Thursday, November 03, 2005
B: My conscience and myself are at variance.
A: Your conscience is in the right.
B: You don't know yet what the quarrel is.
A: Conscience is always right--because it never speaks unless it is so.
I think it's time to call it a day.... I think there's supposed to be an all-girls game of ultimate frisbee this evening, but the wind's blow so hard that playing would be either difficult or impossible. Maybe I'll just go home and find something productive to do....
Wednesday, November 02, 2005
I'll probably be spending most of my evening tonight reading. I need to re-read Joanna Baillie's Count Basil before class tomorrow. I like that play, but I think I prefer some of her other works (particularly de Monfort). I like reading the obscure women writers of the Romantic Period....
Tuesday, November 01, 2005
Monday, October 31, 2005
The weekend, however, was quite eventful. The movie party on Friday night was fun. We (the graduate students in the department) transformed our seminar classroom into something resembling a movie theatre, ordered pizza, and watched Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. The movie was good, and we had fun hanging out and chatting together.
Anna, one of the people that I worked with this summer, came to town to visit for part of the weekend. We spent the remainder of the Friday night just hanging out and catching up; Saturday was more eventful. I made breakfast in the morning (apple crisp -- still have apples), and we went out to a steakhouse for dinner (or lunch or whatever you call that noon meal) with the other two members of our summer teaching team. We all spent the afternoon shopping and running around town; then we all got dressed up and went to a Halloween party in the evening. We didn't win any of the costume contests, but we had a good time together and we managed to win the pumpkin carving contest. (We carved an angel in our pumpkin; the design also looked like an upside-down traditional pumpkin face. We also painted out entire pumpkin blue.) Anna left after the party, as she had some commitments at home on Sunday morning.
Sunday felt like a very long day--and the dreary weather here didn't help. The sky was grey all day--everything was fuzzy and gloomy. The time change probably also contributed to the day feeling long. And now today's another cold and fuzzy and dreary (and rainy) day....
Friday, October 28, 2005
The grad students in my department are having a movie night tonight. We're going to turn out classroom into a movie room, eat junk food, order pizza, and watch Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. I've never read the books (it's a series by Douglas Adams), but I've seen the movie before. The answer is 42. Always remember to bring a towel when traveling through the galaxy. So long and thanks for all the fish.
Wednesday, October 26, 2005
Tuesday, October 25, 2005
Okay, so I've been reading Twain again. We're currently on A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court. I've never read this work before, but I'm finding it very entertaining. One of my favorite things about the work so far is the language. I'm enjoying how Twain shows the differences between Arthurian English (or what he sees as the English of that time period) and the English of his day. An example:
"Who are they? Where do they hang out?"
"Where hang they out?"
"Yes; where do they live?"
"Ah, I understand thee not. That will I tell thee eftsoons. [. . .] Hang they out--hang they out-- where hang--where do they hang out; ah, right so: where do they hang out."
Monday, October 24, 2005
I'm having conferences with my students this morning to discuss the projects on which they're working. My office is dreadfully cold (as usual), so I decided to pull out my electric teapot (actually, it's a hotpot) and have tea this morning. It looks like I'll be drinking peach tea since that's the only thing that I seem to have in the office....
Saturday, October 22, 2005
Thursday, October 20, 2005
I have a 'Word of the Day" section that shows up on my "My Yahoo" page. Just thought I'd share today's word with the rest of the world....
DEFINITION: (verb) to put off, to delay.
EXAMPLE: If you habitually procrastinate, try this technique: never touch a piece of paper without either filing it, responding to it, or throwing it out.
SYNONYMS: dawdle, drag, linger
Tuesday, October 18, 2005
I got my hair cut on this past Friday. One of my friends who's going to beauty school cut it for me. She cut off nearly 14 inches, so it was easily long enough to donate to Locks of Love (http://www.locksoflove.org). Now I'm re-learning how to take care of my short hair. I had to dig out my blow dryer again, and I need to put all of my pretty little clips and hair chop-sticks (and pencils, and paintbrushes) away.
Friday was also the beginning of a little weekend road trip. Jimmy (that's my boyfriend) and I made a nice big loop up through Missouri and Kansas to visit friends. We first stopped in Conception, MO to visit some friends who go to school (seminary) there. Our next stop was Manhattan (Kansas, the Little Apple, home of Kansas State University). While in Manhattan, we attended a friend's percussion recital, went to Mass at St. Isidore's, wandered around Aggieville, and spent time simply visiting with friends. Wichita, KS was our next (and quasi-unplanned) stop. We decided to stop there and visit people when we were driving south out of Manhattan; we made a few phone calls and surprised a few people, and it was fun to see everyone. Our final (and also even more quasi-unplanned) stop was in Stillwater, OK. As we were driving back home, we decided to take a little detour and go to Eskimo Joe's for supper. The trip was fun, but now I need to try to transition back into my regular week and weekend work schedule....
I managed to sleep in a bit this morning (in an attempt to catch up on the lost sleep from the weekend), but the rest of the day will be busy. I'm working all afternoon and then there's class in the evening. A typical Tuesday....
Thursday, October 13, 2005
I went to "recess" with a few other graduate students after class. ("Recess" is when a group of graduate students goes out for supper between the afternoon and the evening set of classes. We started calling our supper outings "recess" when one of the nontraditional students in the department said that his daughter had asked if he had any friends at school that he could play with during recess. Thus, we have recess.) Now it's back to grading papers....
"I usually get at least one new weapon every year."
Despite what the quote might suggest, there's not much excitement here today. (No, I'm not quoting myself. Someone else said it and it was appropriate in the given context...it's just more fun without the given context!) Anyway, I tutored this morning, have class all afternoon, and will probably spend the evening grading papers. I know there's Adoration and other stuff going on at Newman tonight, so I'll probably spend some time over there. The papers, however, are a priority. I've already had them way too long and I need to return them to my students very, very soon.
We'll be discussing Fanny Burney's novel Camilla in class this afternoon. I haven't finished the book (it's massive, over 900 pages!), but what I've read of it has been wonderful--it's relatively easy to read and generally entertaining. I need to start being brilliant and coming up with topics for my papers for this semester....
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
So the questions for the readers (if there are any readers out there): Have you read Huck Finn and, if so, when? (And watching the movie--though it may have gotten you through your high school English class--doesn't count here.)
Tuesday, October 11, 2005
I just wanted to play with putting some photographs up on my new little blog. (Basically, I just wanted to see if I could figure out how to get pictures up here all by my self...and I did it!!) These are a few pictures from my trip to Ireland this past May. Ireland was absolutely beautiful, maybe I'll go back someday....
While I probably should have been working, I spent several hours last night playing Scrabble with my boyfriend. We had fun, but we got a little too competitive. (I still need to check and see if 'il,' 'ye,' 'meshing,' 'devile,' 'quib,' and 'taxe' are words. All of the above were challenged and most were removed from the board as we didn't have a dictionary on hand. A pair of graduate students without a dictionary--pathetic, I know.) I graded a few papers after we finished our games, but I didn't work as late as I probably should have.
Similarly, I was a lazy bum this morning. I read the papers (and thus feel like I'm quasi-informed of the events going on in the vast world around me) and worked on random little projects. The task for the remainder of the afternoon and the evening (preferably before my night class tonight) is to finish grading papers and finish re-reading The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn so I'm prepared for class tomorrow. Always pages to read, pages to grade, and pages to write....
Monday, October 10, 2005
Anyway, I'm feeling generally unmotivated today and I don't want to work. I have books that I need to read and papers that I need to grade, but I'm spending my time putting together a blog instead. (Since we were discussing the value of blogs in my Composition and Rhetoric class the other day, I'll pretend that I'm putting this blog together as an experiment in rhetorical styles and composition pedagogies, but that's not necessarily the truth....)
Seems like somebody's got a case of the Mondays....