Monday, December 21, 2009

Holiday Update

Contrary to how it may appear from the absence of recent posts on this blog I have been writing a lot. For teachers to earn pay raises they have to continue with their own education and the bigger pay doesn't start until they've earn their masters degree. I completed that two years ago and now the pattern seems to be that I scramble during Christmas break to amass the credits I need. This year I just need to complete two three credit courses and finish up one I started in the summer.

If you've ever endured a calculus, organic chemistry, or thermodynamics class you might question whether teachers should get paid more because they've taken the kinds of classes that are offered to earn pay increases. They take time but are usually not difficult. These next couple of weeks I am working through one that is called "Using Picture Books K-12" in which I have to read 100 picture books and critique them and another course titled "Improving Writing Skills through Autobiographical Applications" which has me responding to a variety of autobiographical prompts. I think anyone would enjoy this class if you've ever thought of writing your memoirs. The prompts make you recall your life oriented around food, influential people, defining moments, ancestors, views on particular topics, etc. I've written about thirty pages so far and am probably one third of the way through the prompts. Maybe when I'm done I'll start to organize it into something cohesive.

Ruth's sister Nubia has been visiting us from Mexico for the past month and has a week more to spend with us. It is good for Ruth to have a family member to connect with for a while and to have another person in the rotation of holding or entertaining Elliott. She has come three times this year; the first time when Elliott was born, again for a few weeks in the summer, and now. She lives on the southern coast of Mexico about an hour an a half farther down the coast from Acapulco where it is oppressively hot year round so we've had fun calculating temperatures to centigrade making it sound even colder because minus temperatures begin at our 32 degrees. She and Ruth just came down the stairs and are looking like they are going out for a walk.

Alex is home from CU. He finished this past Tuesday and has been sleeping and playing World of Warcraft for the most part. He has run a couple of times and is doing some exercises that I think he called plyometrics. He has only received a couple of grades so far but seems satisfied with them so that's good. Valerie has been doing the same minus any physical activity. The thinking that kids today sitting around playing video and computer games is making them fat may be erroneous; Valerie often forgets to eat.

I plan to do my Christmas shopping tomorrow. Today is looking to be relatively mild so I'm going to go for a run here shortly and wheel the cart out for the sunny part of the afternoon to see if I can accumulate a bit of Christmas shopping funds.

I wish you all Happy Holidays and renewed energy, conviction, and determination for the new year. Oh, wait, that stuff about the new year is a wish for myself...just kidding.


  1. Nice update...Happy holidays to you all!!

  2. That's thermodynamics please! I think for lots of engineers, your classes would be torture :)

  3. ...but they would be good for them. They might learn to say,"Oh, what an embarrassing error he made in his blog, revealing his ignorance like that; I better email him so that he can quietly make the change.