Life continues to be rich and full in the Miser Family Household. In this past week, we were particularly rich with family memories. J-son turned 22, which means that now I have been his mother for more than half his life, and this family we built up has likewise been his family for more than half his time on earth. We intended to do a J-son photo collage for our Family Fun Foto Friday, but soooo many photos poured in that I couldn't squeeze them all into one space, so instead I made this 2-minute video, which we e-mailed to him late in the day on his birthday. Happy birthday, kiddo!
In other family memory news: When I was kid, my parents used to take me and my sisters to Wolf Trap, an outdoor performing arts place. We'd have picnic lunches on the lawn, wander through the woods, and then head over to the stage where we'd either sit in chairs up front in the pavilion, or sit on the lawn further back. Well, the pandemic means that I'm getting more modern/urban versions of this experience. This time it was my daughter taking me to an open-air performance in a warehouse yard. See the stage on the truck behind us?
The further-back seats were in the parking lot, where people who drove to the event could watch from their cars (and honk, as applause. That was a lot of fun!)
So many new experiences.
For this academic year, my college has moved to a "module" system, where instead of teaching 14-week classes over two semesters, we teach 6-week classes during 4 modules. For example, right now I'm teaching integral calculus 4 days a week, 90 minutes each day, plus a research seminar that meets once or twice a week. The transition from Module 1 to Module 2 is coming up soon (in just under two weeks), and one of my colleagues has had to take a leave of absence, . . . so starting October 12, I'll be taking over his class in addition to my own. That is, instead of teaching 1 class with 18 students (plus the research seminar), I'll be teaching two classes with a combined 49 students (plus the research seminar). To add to the complications, the two calculus classes I'll be teaching have different audiences, so they'll have different kind of assignments, different deadlines . . . although there will be a bunch of similar materials and lessons, it's not exactly like teaching two sections of the same class. So, for about 6 weeks, I'm figuring on being totally swamped.
That being said, earlier this week I gave blood, and then got to mark in my calendar when I'll be eligible to give blood again: November 17. And as I marked that down, I realized, "that'll be three days before the end of Module 2, and then my classes will be over." So I know I'm in for a wild ride, but I also know it's a temporary wild ride.
What will I do with myself and all my free time in December? Maybe I'll sand bricks. We have a four-foot-wide section of an interior brick wall that is crumbling a bit (and by "a bit", I mean "a lot"). We had a mason come over to look at it this week, and he said he could add another layer on top, but maybe first I'd want to try a home remedy: sanding it myself with a low-grit sandpaper [and a big fan, and the windows open, and masks], and then re-varnishing it with Prosoco/siloxane pd. To all of my construction-savvy friends and family out there: any words of wisdom about this potential project?
And that's the way the cookie crumbles in our family, which continues to be wealthy in our adventures and in our photographic memories. May you and yours be similarly prosperous.