Friday, January 31, 2014


It is January 31st already! We've been in Worcester one day over three weeks now. I've taught 8 Linear Algebra classes, which means I have another 15 to go, plus three exams. And then another 50 classes of calculus and combinatorics before May - phew. But I got paid today, for the first time in close to two years (which means I can afford to continue to bring my wardrobe up to Tier 1 private university snuff). That is the summary.

"And that is why I only buy Japanese cars."
-- my office mate on the preparedness of American-trained Engineers.


Wednesday, January 29, 2014


Coming home from work to my sweet and cheerful baby boy, who IS feeling much better these last few days. We put all the duvets and pillows in a pile, cruise the radio for some classic rock and then run around!!! Meanwhile P cooks up some lentil stew (served with homemade sourdough) and cracks a bottle of Wednesday wine. Things are O-K.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014


In the mail today, I got an actual copy of my article which appeared in the proceedings of the royal society (A). Woo! It is a really pretty journal too - look at that cover! It also matches my donut, which is apparently the official food of math colloquia around here.

Saturday, January 25, 2014


While poor Patrick was home yesterday dealing with a sad and feverish H, I was at work, and I got to attend a pretty cool talk. Cathy O'neil, aka "mathbabe", was talking about recommendation engines. It was a good talk, and gave me some ideas to motivate my linear algebra class. But more interesting was her biography, a mathematician turned data-whiz quant turned venture capitalist turned "occupy finance" author. In her own worlds, her mission is to "use math to make the world a more democratic place". Sounds like someone to know more about. 


Heiko is so sick, I don't think he has ever been so congested. He has become the boy you can't put down, day or night. But this afternoon his energy seemed to rise and he attempted to make duck shadow puppets with this nightlight. 

Thursday, January 23, 2014


Zeolites and Penrose Tiles, together at last!!! 

Tuesday, January 21, 2014


My favourite part of my day at work is getting pictures of this guy learning new things at home. Like drinking from his H cup, what a sweetie.

Monday, January 20, 2014


Monday marshmallows, following Sunday marshmallows. 


Sunday Sunday, international day of groceries. 

Saturday, January 18, 2014


Magical slow Saturday with my favourite guys. Plus this snow version of Patrick, 

Friday, January 17, 2014


Essential desk set up: scrounged mug (free from the math department, perhaps from a department member who actually is a grandpa?), an image of my favourite topological object - the "pair of pants", and last but not least a picture of the number one love of my life. 

Thursday, January 16, 2014


Worcester is as damp as Fort Collins is dry. Another misty morning on my first day of teaching. 


Tuesday, January 14, 2014


I went to downtown Worcester today to apply for a social security number. Upon seeing my foreign passport the clerk told me that my English was very good.
Downtown Worcester is essentially a parking lot, as far as I can tell. Perhaps it was the weather (steady rain) but there weren't too many folks on the sidewalks. The social security place, on the other hand, was hopping, line-ups out the door and everything. I don't think we will find too many reasons to be downtown this semester.


First work day is done. I'm glad I spruced up the wardrobe on those Boxing Day sales though, since WPI seems to be kind of Fancy. It's all swishy swipe cards and high heels clacking on brick pathways.
Worcester is not a city for pedestrians, sadly. Everyone drives. Everyone. Luckily, I found a secret way to work. It isn't secret, it just isn't on google maps. I simply wend my way up the big hill then down the big hill, past a few schools, through the retirement residence, past the stopping-by-woods-on-a-snowy-evening section (above) on to the private road and then along the quiet streets where the rich people live. Then I arrive at work! I think I'll pack my own clacky heels in my backpack though, and strap on my yak trax for the commute. I'm not in flat flat colorado anymore!

Sunday, January 12, 2014


The fog of first impressions.

12 (21)

He is 21 months today. I can't believe I have been lucky enough to be able to spend the better part of these last two years being with him each and every day. Tomorrow I'm back to work. Or at least, I'm starting to work again, a new job, in a new city. Exciting, and terrifying. Let's hope my brain still works.

Friday, January 10, 2014


On the bright side, here is the view out the back window. Oh, and the house came with chowder (chowdah!) bowls, since obviously they are essential. Worcester!


Listening to sleeping Heiko on our old-school baby monitor last night we picked up some interference from a Christian radio station talking about the anti-Christ, among other things. Maybe it was the "truth" station advertised on the anti-evolution billboards along the interstate. Yes, we're in America now.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014


No screen time be damned!! Watching TV in the hotel by the finger lakes (NY). 


Quiet day, waiting to leave. Too cold to go out, too excited to stay in. Luxuriously watching homeland and knitting a few rows.  

Monday, January 6, 2014


"The only other sound's the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake."

Reading to my little pajama clad boy, from Robert Frost, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening. Robert Frost lived in Massachusetts, apparently. The car is packed and ready to go, my geometry skills finally finding some real world application in wizarding too much stuff into too little space. It looks like the snow and the wind on the roads will keep us an extra day on this side of the border though. What to do with an extra day in my favourite city? Maybe I'll read this beautiful poem a few more times. 

Sunday, January 5, 2014


Checking the weather above and below the lake. Preparing for our journey, to end at our new (non-)home. Pulling on snowsuits, scarf, mitts, hat, boots. Sewing in the loose ends. Gathering the provisions.


Friday, January 3, 2014

Moment 3

He likes his new sweater.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Moment 2

Nerd card games at village by the grange.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Moment 1

The first moment, what pressure. But it is also an easy one, since we visited Riverdale farm today! Cows and chickens and posing for pictures at minus ten Celsius, oh my.
Have you ever seen such a velvety cheek?

New year new you

Well Happy New Year everyone!
What a tremendous year it has been. Seems like everywhere I look on and off the interwebs people are resolving and intentioning and setting goals. Let me on to that bandwagon!
I am considering another 365 day project. Remember the 365 lovelinesses? That was pretty fun. Life is different now though (understatement). I thought I was busy back in those days, but I see now that I was wrong. So this needs to be easy. And maybe it will fail.
So I'm here to announce that you can all expect a dive in quality, to yet-unknown lows! That doesn't sound good. Still though, are you with me?
Instead of loveliness, I'm just doing moments. A record of moments. Snapshots of the day, maybe a word or two. Nothing much. The exciting and the mundane, big and small. If it is anything like this crappy post then apparently I'm not even going to write in full sentences.
Here we go!