Wednesday, February 26, 2014

57 and some that slipped by

It finally happened!!! My penrose zeolite!!! (Note the big pile of marking I ignored to do this). 
Yes, well, the last few days have been a blur of an alternating drafty and smelly house. Heating oil is gross, people. Our landlord decided to have the leaking oil tank on the basement replaced, which is good news, but it meant we had to wait a little longer with a stinky house than we might have liked. And then the internet died and the company had to send a real live person to fix it. Really? In this day and age. 

Speaking of the internet, I told my linear algebra class how google search works (eigenvectors!!!!) and they didn't care. I guess they were mad at me because the second test was hard. If I do boring stuff then they are bored, and if I do fun stuff they are blank. 

But speaking of learning, of course there is Heiko, who is picking up so many new words (he says 'night night' now) and skills (puzzles!). So many sweet kisses and expressions, so much amazement in every day. I want to try to record more of that here. 

For this night I think I'll just take one more look at this sweet sweet aperiodic zeolite and then say night night ('nah nah'). 

Saturday, February 22, 2014


When more oil to heat the house is too much: we have a toxic oil spill in our basement. Why on this weekend of scrambling to get things done? Hours vaporizing outside while we wait for patches to the tank (won't be until Monday) and airing out. Mercifully we are having a warm(er) weekend, so it isn't too bitterly cold. Now all there is to do is wait, think about sunny lunches like this one, and dream of spring. 

Friday, February 21, 2014


Pretty math mistakes. 

Thursday, February 20, 2014


Making math pictures: fun! 


I have heard Wednesday described by WPI faculty as 'the little weekend'. As far as I can tell, no classes meet on Wednesdays, I suppose they are reserved for things like labs which happily math does not require. I always go in and work (I need to to keep up with the four teaching days!), but I used this particular little weekend to reconnect with my little guy. We watched the oil truck come and pump oil into the big black tank in the basement. 
It is a dirty smelly business, but entertaining for the truck-interested. And, if it also happens to be garbage day? (Burpaba burpaba...) Heaven, basically. 


I finally cast off my 'colour affection'!! And then Heiko and I both tried it on.

Hopefully I can take some better pictures soon. Right now I'm medium happy with it, and already thinking about what I will do differently on round two. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014


Serious case of the Mondays.

Sunday, February 16, 2014


First there was a near full morning moon, and then it was buttery eggs for breakfast.
Then it was time to continue to chip away at the ice covered steps.
Of course we needed hot chocolate.
Heiko had a nap, and then I had a yoga nap.

This is a pretty sweet yoga spot, by the way, when I get the chance, that is. And in fact I think this was pretty much the first actual hour of yoga since our arrival in Worcester. Everything is sooooo stiff, from all that bracing against the cold and teaching in high heels.
But then it was time to get back to business, so we had slurpy soup and then H had a sensory experience with some pinto beans. It was a good day.

Saturday, February 15, 2014


And more and more snow. Oh, and also ice. These moments are getting very tedious. 

Thursday, February 13, 2014


Heiko is enjoying his new smelling skills! 
My favourite valentine on this snow day. 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

43 and missing moments

Ugh. The child who does not sleep. I thought -- ha ha, seems hilarious now --I thought that being away from me during the day would make my child a better sleeper, since he would stop depending on me to get him back to sleep. Funnie! And false. Terrible sleep! None of us sleep at all any more, and did we even sleep to begin with? Between sickness and inexplicable midnight barfs and teething and who knows what, I don't even remember if there ever was a normal. Now I have a cold too, so it has been an early bedtime mandate around here, to try to catch those extra Zeds.
And so, all these moments whiz by. One day my class is great, the next day I want to crawl under a rock and never come out. One day Heiko is a fountain of new words, the next day he is just screams and whines. One day I'm greeting the "regulars" along my crazy commute, the next day I'm hoping no one hits me when the lack of plowing forces me to walk on the road. One day the sun sets crimson over the lake, the next day the glaring white snow cuts deeply into a headache.
Big mixed bag, foggy brains.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

38, and then 39

OH! Friday, and then Saturday. Thank god, basically.
I learned yesterday that my teaching assignment next term has been changed, in the best possible way! After a few weeks of deliberation, a very very generous faculty member finally agreed to switch classes with me so that I will teach two sections of one course (still eight hours of class time a week), instead of two different classes, both of which would be new to me. This will make an enormous difference in my ability to do anything other than teach next term (i.e. I'll actually be able to do the other half of my job -- research). I was pretty terrified, given how much work my single course this term is turning out to be. So I'm breathing a giant sigh of relief, which made Friday night especially sweet.
Today was a quiet, coffee-drinking, snuggle-y, getting-things-done kind of day. Preparing, planning, stocking up. We finally shovelled out the car, and drove down to the grocery store (really getting into the Worcester swing of things). Now we're well supplied for the next big snow.

Thursday, February 6, 2014


Another day, another commute. Today I learned that last year Worcester had the most snow in all of USA. Just in terms of inches, there were more snowy ones here than anywhere else in this fair land. I don't know what is in store for us through the rest of the winter, although the unofficial groundhog of Massachusetts, Ms. G, predicted more winter. 
So, more snow, more radical acts of walking. 
Oh, and Heiko has firmly grasped the idea of "kiss it better". <3

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

No! 33, 34, 35, 36.

This is why this whole thing is here! To stop all the moments from slipping away. Who knows what happened on Sunday? Heiko and I went out to the lake! The lake ice is thick, and the soundtrack to the weekends is the whine of snow machines, and the occasional holler or successful ice fisher people. Anyway, H and I snuck out early to look at the big cracks in the ice.
And then it was Monday. It has been a long time since I've taken a test, but let me say that being on the other side, as the giver of the test, is pretty stressful too! But my students did OK. Quite well, actually.

Tuesday was about wearing mama and dada's clothes.
Which brings us to today, a snow day. We sure have a lot of it. Everyone here has a personal snow blower, cutting deep troughs in the thick snow. H made snow angels with his dad this afternoon, and this happened.

Sunday, February 2, 2014


Saturday, Saturday. Making pancakes is the first order of business for everyone.  Next, a harrowing seven minute drive to a beautiful and deserted winter forest. The roads of Worcester are basically all highways or seem to consist only of curving on or off ramps to highways. Zoomy zoomy zoom. We've already been in one (highly trivial) accident here, a man with a neck brace (I can only assume due to a traffic accident) backed into us in a parking lot. 

But all we needed was some time in the forest, listening to birds and the quiet. We spent the better part of an hour by the side of a ice-covered burbling stream, throwing sticks and snowballs through a small hole in the ice (the boys aim is getting pretty good), watching them flow away and disappear under the ice.