Monday, December 15, 2008
Sunday, December 14, 2008
Saturday, December 13, 2008
The photo is from Paddington, the neighborhood with Sister-In-Law lives.
Photo by aschmidt1978
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Sunday, December 7, 2008
Happy birthday, Father-in-Law!
Friday, December 5, 2008
...May be time to get a hobby.
Monday, December 1, 2008
I think I'm posting this to the internet now so that it's out there and I can't change my mind! I've been wanting to do this for a while, and if I'm going to advance in my career I can't put it off any longer. Time to do one last degree!
Have been debating for weeks about what/how many books to take on our trip. We're flying from Denver to Las Vegas to Honolulu to Sydney (gah!) so I'll have plenty of time to read. One big fat book or several shorter books? What if the big fat book is boring and I'm stuck over the Pacific with nothing to do? What if I finish all of the shorter books that are in the cabin with me and I can't get to the books I packed in my checked luggage? These are REALLY stupid questions (good grief, how self-absorbed can one person be?), but at the root of all of this is my anxiety about being cooped up in a plane for all of those hours. I'm not exactly nervous about flying, but I don't deal well with boredom and being stuck in one place. I think I'm anxious about becoming anxious! I think I'll end up taking the big fat book and buying other books during the layovers as I need them. Could be expensive, but definitely worth it.
Sunday, November 30, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Just a few of the things I am grateful for:
- The Mister, who has been my rock during a very difficult year.
- My family.
- The roof over our heads--after years of moving it's so nice to know that I don't have to stockpile copy paper boxes! Although, I am finding it's a hard habit to kick...
Friday, November 21, 2008
Image via ssplam
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Less than four weeks until our trip! The list making madness has started. I started packing about a month ago when it was time to take the summer clothes out of the closet. The Australian dollar is tanking (sorry, Australians!) so our penguin-seeking jaunt actually got a little cheaper. More than anything I'm looking forward to quality time with the Mister, our family, and gazing at the ocean for long, thoughtless stretches of time.
Image via Suburbanbloke
Monday, November 10, 2008
- America: The Last Great Hope (volume 2) by William J. Bennett
- Another Man's Moccasins, Craig Johnson
- Unveiled, by Deborah Kanafani
- Redemption, by Lee Jackson
I'd give them all a B+. Bennett's work is always well-researched, whether you agree with his politics or not is another issue. The Johnson mystery was a strange mix of Asian, American, and Native American cultures but he made it work. Kanafani's story gave deeper insight into Mid-East politics (which I badly need), and Redemption was a scary trip into the future. It emphasized post-9/11 politics and civil liberties.
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Saturday, November 1, 2008
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Saturday, October 25, 2008
Friday, October 24, 2008
One of the big draws in Hobart is the Salamanaca Market. This website has several pictures. There's also the Sydney to Hobart yacht race--our plan is to watch them depart, then fly to Hobart and maybe catch their arrival.
Less than two months to go! Mentally, I've already checked out. In a rare moment of self-preservation I ordered my swimsuits and am now awaiting their arrival.
Photo by Nathanael B
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
I have asked this student to call me but haven't heard back from her. The disadvantage to teaching online is that you are at the student's mercy to respond to your requests for communication.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Friday, October 10, 2008
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Finished three excellent books at the end of September: unChristian, Eat, Pray, Love and The Bell Jar. As of this writing I've finished 48 of my 52 books for the year.
Friday, September 19, 2008
Sunday, September 14, 2008
On Saturday I went to Miller Farms near Longmont to participate in their end-0f-season produce clean up. For $12 they drive you around their fields and at every stop you hop out and pick organic vegetables to take home. I went nuts! I came home with 15 lbs. of potatoes, 10 lbs. of onions, 6 lbs. of tomatoes, 5 lbs. of green beans, 10 ears of corn, 6 lbs. of red and golden beets, 1 kohlrabi, and a small sunburn. I'm canning the green beans and tomatoes, and the potatoes and onions will go in our basement for storage. Not sure what to do with that many beets, but whatever we can't use will be distributed to friends. I've never canned before, but the dilly green beans look good in their jar. The tomatoes are going to become marinara sauce and get canned later this week.
Saturday night I went out with my dear friend to our favorite Vietnamese restaurant conveniently located just down the street from our house. We had an excellent dinner and a long evening of conversation. She is currently in the middle of adopting a sweet girl from Kyrgyzstan, so if you have a moment please say a prayer that the adoption moves along quickly. Winter is coming and they are expecting rolling power outages. We don't want our girl to get cold!
More updates on my reading later this week...
Thursday, September 4, 2008
Tickets for a concert have been purchased and we have reservations this weekend at Solera (a restaurant we've never been to). I'm ready for a nice relaxing weekend to celebrate us.
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
Didn't do much reading, but did get some good recommendations at the family gathering on Sunday. The Boss came in to work with a stack of 20+ doctoral dissertations that he offered to let me read, but I took a pass. I'm bored, but not that bored.
Friday, August 29, 2008
Monday, August 25, 2008
One realization that's come from my 52 book challenge is the sad acknowledgment that there's very little good fiction out there. It's been so long since I've read something that inspired me. I love to read non-fiction, but sometimes it would be nice to read a novel that makes me sing a little bit inside when I finish it. They're few and far between, that's for sure.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Friday, August 8, 2008
This has been a busy week. I spent two days in Vail for a conference for work--tough life, I know! For whatever reason it was really hard to get back into my routine when I got home on Wednesday night.
The weekend holds a lot of promise: my peach mule is delivering 18 more pounds tomorrow. Huzzah! We're also going to Colorado Springs to visit the Mister's cousin and see a movie.
Happy Friday, all!
Saturday, August 2, 2008
The Yampa River provides irrigation for the hay and water for the livestock.
It's always relaxing to visit this oasis in the mountains.
Friday, August 1, 2008
BIL's family has been ranching in the Yampa Valley since the late 1800s. His Grandma is the Grand Dame of Steamboat and is regularly profiled in magazines and newspapers. BIL's family is committed to preserving the ranching traditions in an area that has very quickly become a popular tourist destination and a town where you have to have at least a million dollars to get into the housing market. Here are a few pictures:
This is the original homestead (built in the late 1800s). It's known as "The Bunkhouse". Little Sister and BIL lived there for a year before they bought their house. You can see the chinking in between the logs. It's heated in the winter by a cute little cast iron stove.
This is one of the barns on the property. It's in a bad state so they use it only for hay storage. BIL hangs Christmas lights off of it during the winter because you can see it from across the valley.
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Monday, July 28, 2008
Saturday, July 26, 2008
It reads like a biography, but it is a compilation of interviews with over 80 of his friends, colleagues, family members, politicians, and professional rivals. There's a deep respect for his high journalistic standards and thorough understanding of world affairs.
My favorite quotation came after he became an American citizen:
"I aspire to be a good American. And I aspire to stand for the best American values. That's not easy. It takes work. I know of no people on Earth who are more generous, who are more open, sometimes to the point of distraction. I know of no people who mean better...So I aspire to be a good American means to see the best of America, but it's also to see the bad, and to work in a responsible way to try to make that which is bad better, and to relish the best in the country. It is an exceptional country... At its best, it's a joyous experience, a really, truly rich experience" (p. 260).
He was also apparently vain about his appearance (from an interview with John Leo):
"Peter loved ties. He particularly loved ties his friends were wearing. You'd go out to dinner with Peter and he'd admire your tie, and you'd say thank you and try to get back to the conversation. No, no, Peter would extravagantly admire your tie over and over until you took it off and gave it to him. And that's how he acquired a great many of his ties. At his fiftieth birthday party, we dummied up a slide show of all the events of his life that were likely to be embarrassing...The one that got the biggest laughs was--he turned fifty in the Dukakis year--was of him stripping the tie off Dukakis during their interview. Everybody roared over that because every man in the audience had lost a couple of ties to Peter. He did send me six ties one year, to apparently make up for it. They were the six most hideous ties I've ever seen in my life" (p. 240).
Stories like that are why I like biographies so much. The public persona is very rarely interesting to me--I like to see the goofball, dorky, and just plain strange sides of people.
Friday, July 25, 2008
Now that we've been in the house for a year and we're feeling (mostly) settled, I thought I'd post a few pictures of my favorite features.
I'm pretty sure I got the idea for the fabric/embroidery hoop display from Alicia. Everyone on the internet has done it--I also saw it on the Martha Stewart show--but it fit two criterion for me: 1. it was inexpensive and 2. it used up some of the scraps that I had accumulated.
Don't tell the Mister, but I really like the neutral color of our paint. My heart was set on painting but the Mister's heart was set on leaving well enough alone. Although the color reminds me of every rental and flipped house we saw on the market, it does make the room feel really warm. It also makes our black picture frames pop.
The big picture window in the living room still manages to make our tiny Christmas trees (real tree = expensive!) look big and beautiful. The wood floors have a lovely honey color to them.
All right, enough of the real estate lovefest. I don't dare show you the downstairs or the backyard!
Monday, July 21, 2008
Although I don't know anyone who is married to someone famous, I know a lot of women, including myself, who struggle to find their place independent of their husband. When do my needs become more important than his needs, and vice-versa? If we're on opposite sides of an issue, at what point does compromise come into play? Are there times when compromise should not be an option? Leary does a good job illustrating the dangers of not thinking carefully about decisions made as a couple.
Saturday, July 19, 2008
We've been in our house one year! Tonight we're finally have our Housewarming/BBQ. I took this picture on the day we closed. We signed the papers, grabbed our keys, swung by Chipotle to get some dinner, and then had our first meal in our new house.
The last year has been incredibly difficult--we've lost and grieved so much. I've never experienced anything like it. Working on the house and the yard has provided a much-needed distraction. We already have good memories and many, many reasons to be thankful.