Tuesday, August 19, 2014

I am SO GLAD I wasn't drinking anything...

...when I ran across this on Angel's FB page:

If I had been drinking something, I'd've likely had to replace my keyboard.  Again.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Alrighty, then.

So, I used a study room this morning for office hours.  I headed up to my classroom right about classtime (got there a couple minutes early) and spotted two signs, one for each useless class scheduled in my room during my requested office hours, reading that the class had been moved because it'd gotten too big, and they'd gotten a bigger room.

Which made the front desk librarian even angrier than she already was, because these two admin twats didn't bother to tell the library that they were so doing. 

I get my preferred spot for office hours, at the times I wanted. 

I just wish there'd been less drama.  That particular librarian?  Yeah, she's pregnant, and due right at the end of semester.  She doesn't need the aggravation. 


I put the kids to bed early, last night, because both ended up not having a nap yesterday (well, the pixie did, but it was all of a quarter of her usual nap length).

By ten pm, the pixie was crying.  I got her up and to the bathroom (and changed, since she'd decided upon going to bed that she wanted her flannel nightgown), and discovered that she was running a low grade fever.  She was up again at 12:30, 2:00, and 3:30, feeling bad, sad, and generally upset.  She finally fell into a deep sleep after the last wake-up, but by then, the damage was kinda already done.  To her night, Odysseus's night, and mine.

This morning, when I got the kids up and dressed, it seemed that the pixie's fever had run its course.  I got them fed, and checked again to find it creeping back up.  It's the first day of semester, so I don't have the option of staying home with her, yet--I dosed her with Ibuprofen, and took her to school anyway.

So, up at 6:30, dressed myself, and the kids, then fed the kids and stayed on them while they ate, then fixed sandwiches, and rushed around getting their stuff together.  Then had to put on my teacher-face (I don't wear makeup except on days I work--and then it's part of my unofficial uniform).  And then, it was time to finish getting the kids ready, find my shoes, discover that the shoes I'd bought for work shoes ran a half-size too small (!), and hunt for my boots.  I did not have the time to sit down and print off my rosters (which the registrar used to do, but has now decided that they're too important to do), or to check email, or have even a sip of my nice, fresh, hot coffee. 

So, coffee came with me. 

We got the kids to school, and then ourselves to campus--Odysseus has a 9:00, a 10:00 and an 11:00 class on Mondays and Wednesdays, and loses the last class on Fridays; I have office hours planned for 9:00 til class time at 11:00, then class from 11:00 til 1:00.  I spent the first half hour I was on campus over in the actual department building, dropping off printed materials for a colleague, and begging the department secretary to print my rosters for me,* then signing my contract.  Then I walked over to the library for office hours and class, and discovered that my reservation for my classroom for office hours had been pre-empted by someone of higher rank for a worthless, useless class that was designed as make-work to put the admin twats in front of the classroom (and suck more tuition and fees out of the students, since it's a required class). 

Right now, the librarian who dealt with my reservation is confused, irritated, angry, and pregnant.  She gave me a key for a study room on another floor for my office hours today, and is trying to figure something out, and straighten things out for me. 

But...right now, I have a sick three-year-old in preschool, office hours that I don't yet know where to tell my students I will be, a book to finish writing before the first papers come in in two weeks, and a major case of brain fog because of interrupted sleep.

Thus far, not a terribly auspicious start to the semester... 

I am hopeful that things will get better, not worse.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Mom's birthday

Odysseus went to see Guardians of the Galaxy, not too long ago.  He came home and reported that the soundtrack was really, really good, if it was the mix tape that the character's mother had made for him when he was a child.

So, I looked it up...and found that it would be perfect (or nearly so) for Mom for her birthday (which was today--she turned 69, and I treasure each birthday she's around to celebrate). 

The CD comes with auto-rip, which means that you get the MP3 album for free.  We used it to double-check to make sure it really was the songs I remembered Mom loving...and it very much is.  It really is a fun collection of music, with only two songs that are more average than awesome.

Go take a look.  It really is a fun bit of music.

(And yes, my mom is happy...and my aunts are jealous.  It was, overall, a good birthday for her.)

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Random ramblings

I love my son.  I really do.  But sometimes, I want to strangle the little twerp. 

So, Thursday, he started kindergarten.  And Friday, he came home telling me the vowels.  Brought a folder full of classwork that he'd completed...badly.  He either hadn't listened and followed instruction, or he'd deliberately done it wrong.  One of the two.

Of the two, knowing this child, I'm betting it was deliberate.  He doesn't want people knowing the extent of his capabilities.  I'm not sure why.  I'm not sure if he knows why. 

He's a bit young for that, but he's been that way since he was an infant.

According to the school's sent-home handouts, they're planning on having him reading by the end of the year.  I don't think it's going to be too hard...his grandmother told me that he spelled out most of "airport" while he was playing with a "car rug"--a printed map of roads and places to be played with using matchbox-style cars.  And that when she looked later, that word was nowhere on the map.  And he's refused to do it since.

The pixie came home from three year old preschool telling me she'd made "too many friends."  In pixie-speak, that means too many to count.  And I can believe it--she's the sweetest, most outgoing little girl ever.  She helps younger children to do things, and she's one of the oldest in her class, since she'll be four in December.

She brought home a folder of things she'd completed, and a behavior report card that had a perfect score of three stickers.  And a few things telling us what she'll be learning in class: she'll be learning to count (she can already make it up to fifteen), learning the alphabet (she already knows it), learning sign language a bit, and learning the alphabet, numbers, colors, and shapes in Spanish. 

Color me impressed.

I asked her what her favorite lesson was, and she reported that her favorite was the bible story.

Last night, Odysseus and I sat down and watched a movie.  We watched X-Men: First Class.  I loved it.  He loved it.  The cats...ended up perched together on the back of the couch, washing each other's ears very intently.  Kind of a relief, that--they'd been fighting, as in tearing fur out of each other fighting, all week.

I'm beginning to wonder if it's because the dog's gone, and they don't have a common "enemy" anymore...

Speaking of the dog...my mother said that she bit my sister last week.  Not hard enough to draw blood, but certainly hard enough to leave a good bruise.  She said that my sister had been playing with the dog, then stopped to do something else, and the dog got jealous.

That does not bode well.  And I'm going to need to do some research to a) make sure she'll be safe with the kids in the yard when we get a place outside of town, and b) see if it's possible to train that out of her.

Classes start for our local university on Monday.  Odysseus and I plan to head in and drop the kids off at school before heading onto campus.  I'll have two and a half hours or so between arrival on campus and start of class, so I've decided to hold office hours during that block of time.  Odysseus has two hours before his will start--Tuesdays/Thursdays, too--he's planning on using that for homework, study, and research time. 

I've been too busy with the start-up of school--the kids' preps and my own--to get a whole lot of writing done.  I have gotten some done, but nowhere near as much as I want.  Call it a chapter every other night, instead of every night. 

I do, however, have three hours of free time lined up for three days next week, and the week after.  Starting the first week of September, I plan to use that time for grading papers.

Friday, August 15, 2014

FFOT: forgetting things while you're out

So, this morning, I don't have much.  The imp started kindergarten yesterday, and the pixie started preschool this morning.  We went to Walmart for a couple of things, then decided we were going to go to Sam's Club...then totally forgot to go to Sam's Club, and had to backtrack after we'd gotten 90% of the way home.

Took almost forty minutes off my planned cleaning-without-kids-underfoot time. 

Being forgetful can fuck off.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Got a bit done today.

Imp was at school, and pixie was really, really quiet and tired--got her up at 6:30 this morning.  She went down for her nap early, and slept longer than usual.

We shall see what tomorrow, and her first day, brings.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

I am reminded of a line of Emily Dickinson*...

Things I learned at the zoo, today...
  • Capuchin monkeys can be shy.
  • Spider monkeys are not. 
  •  The burro is the worst mooch in the petting zoo.  And the smartest: she scares the kids with her great big teeth, so they won't feed her--therefore, she tips her head way back and opens her mouth for the treat to be dropped in.  And she will follow people who've fed her around and do that to make them laugh...and get more treats.
  • The imp's hair is about the same color as the crackers they sell for guests to feed to the giraffes...which got his head licked pretty solidly.  I'm just sad it happened too fast to get pictures.
  • Wolves are actually quite easy to freak out.  Three zookeepers were in his enclosure, building him a den, and he was running circles around them, watching them, terrified.
  • Snakes will wake up and move to see the imp better, just as the bearded dragons in PetSmart will do.
  • The zoo will occasionally drain the hippo's pool...which makes for a sad hippo.
  • Tigers are also very much not shy.  And the one that was the most not shy was also male.  See post title.
 See: A Dying Tiger Moaned for a Drink.  You'll know which line I was talking about.