Tuesday, December 18, 2007

I'm too sexy for my grades

That's what I was singing, fairly merrily, at 10:00 this morning as I marched into the last meeting of the semester, having just filed the grades for all of my classes and sent off the paper that my co-author and I have been struggling with for months.

This was not particularly nice, since no-one else in that meeting had filed yet, but since it's the first thing that I've gotten done in any semblance of good time this semester, I figured I deserved a moment of glee. Don't you think?

Especially since yesterday was awful. Worse yet, I knew it would be awful, as I'd scheduled all of the meetings that needed to happen to deal, at least marginally, with all of the junk from the week before. I'd fretted about the meetings all weekend. I'd fretted so hard that I broke out like a high school student on the morning of the prom. I lost quite a lot of sleep. I did, however, manage to take a break from all of that for a short space on Sunday afternoon. The girls had a piano recital, at which Younger Daughter flat-out refused to play (more on that in another post), we had a lovely dinner at a local Indian restaurant with good friends, and then we picked up some wood for the fireplace and came home to bring the tree in and decorate it. The girls put on pjs, Rick got out his trombone (!!), and we lit a fire and relaxed. It was lovely.

I think the girls were a bit shocked by the trombone (they've never heard him play).
Trombones are loud. But they went back to tree decorating merrily, and had a lot of fun finding the ornaments they've made in the past and hanging them on the tree (I remember doing the same thing at their age).
I know, it's not a pine tree. Years ago, it started to really bother me to put our tree out on the curb, dead and denuded, after Christmas was over (I readily acknowledge that this is a weird attitude in a woman who will eat meat, but there it is). So Rick and I bought a pine tree in a big huge pot, which lived outside except for a few weeks during the holidays, which struck me as a perfect solution. Until we moved from the Bay Area (which is cold enough in the winter to make pines happy) to North County (which most definitely is not). And our pine tree stopped being so happy during the off-season. And, as much as I don't mind sacrificing a bit for the sake of a good tree, a brown Christmas tree which is losing all of its needles is just not festive.

At about the same time, our leanings towards some of the philosophical tenets of Buddhism became stronger, and a bodhi tree seemed appropriate, so we acquired a lovely ficus with very dark green leaves. It lives happily on the back patio all year long, and usually comes in on Bodhi Day (in early December), but we missed the date this year. However, it is now inside and decorated.

So there it is, glowing merrily by the fireplace. I really needed that evening of peace to face yesterday's meetings, which were awkward and painful. Rick did an amazing job of caretaking during the day. I came back from the two meetings to find an email from him which offered to come right away to take me off-campus for lunch. I said YES. Later in the afternoon, we all met at the dentist's office for a cleaning, and when he and the girls were all done, and I was still sitting in my chair waiting for someone to come see me (they'd trapped me in the back wearing one of those lovely paper bibs before deserting me for other patients), Rick went to the front desk and got me rescheduled for weeks away from now and took me home and fed me dinner and let me grade. It just doesn't get better than that.

And now that's all done, and there's a plan for moving forward which can't go drastically awry for at least a month, and my grades are filed, and I have not a single thing scheduled for tomorrow. That's not to say that there's nothing to be done. I need to get pjs for the girls for their traditional Christmas Eve present, and pick up some stocking things (Santa fills stockings in our house), and mail one box. But it's on my time, and if I want to go for the whole day without talking to anyone but Rick and the girls, I can do that. I'm so excited, I can't stand it (here's where my essential introverted nature comes out). A whole day ALONE.

I know that this has been a knitting-shy post. It's not for lack of knitting. I've turned the heel on the first of Rick's socks and am several inches up the leg. I'll post pictures tomorrow. I think that, very soon, I will put the sock on a piece of scrap yarn and start the other sock, so that I can try to make them as long as possible with the yarn that I have. This is another time when a very accurate kitchen scale would be nice. I could just knit until only half of the yarn is left and then start the next one. But my scale isn't so hot (something to pick up at after-Christmas sales?), so I must create a workaround with what I've got, and I think this'll do the trick. I'm pretty happy with them; I'm doing a k2 p1 rib, with a small cable at each side, and it's coming out quite nicely in the Trekking. You all will have to tell me what you think when I post pictures tomorrow.

How are you all doing with holiday prep? Am I the only one who's feeling a bit behind? Also, tomorrow, I will have an iPod question for those of you who use them, so be prepared to weigh in and help a newby!


Bea said...

NO I feel behind on the holiday prep even though there is hardly any to be done! We did solve the dead and denuded tree problem, by buying a fake one a couple of years ago. I hated to do that but I couldn't get over the dead tree.

I'm glad your meetings went well. Your grades got done. The dentist was postponed! and you got to spend some great family time. How many years has it been since he played the trombone if the girls had never heard him play? Is that like riding a bicycle where you can get going again right away??

Alisha said...

We do a fake tree. I feel better about it.

I do like the idea of your tree though. That is cool.

Great shots too...family fun at it's best!

I have had to let quite a few things go....not all the people I had wanted will get itts and I knocked off a few jammie bottom recipients. Sometimes you have to scale back.

Anne said...

We have no tree at all this year because Dobby the kamikaze kitten would surely have spent all of his time either eating or climbing it; I could just imagine being awakened even earlier by the crash of toppling tree & the tinkle of smashing ornaments...I didn't even BUY pjs for our traditional Christmas Eve present this year because D#2 inherited so many she has 13 pairs of pjs (!!) and D#1 sleeps in an old t-shirt of mine and some old Mini-Boden star print pj bottoms she refuses to exchange for anything. I wonder what kind of hits you're going to get based on that post title ....

Congrats on being done! Enjoy, enjoy.

Stell said...

well done on filing the grades on time, i know what a mammoth effort that can be. My mum played the trombone - and its been years since I have heard one. IT is one of my childhood memories, its a wonder the girls didn't decorate it.

love the tradition tree, with decorations made in years past.


Anonymous said...

Congratulations on turning in grades! What a relief.

We don't have a tree yet. We'll probably get one tomorrow. I get a nice, real, dead tree - I like the smell of dying pine for Christmastime.

We believe in Santa at our house.


Marianne said...

I've done so very little it might would be pathetic but at this point I just am not going to fret about it...at all.
I LOVE that you have that tradition of pjs on Christmas Eve! I did that with my three (until they either grew up or quit wearing them) and I carry on with Conor and Gracie now. Funny.
Love the ficus tree decorated!
I know just how you feel... a day alone.. I'll get mine, hopefully next Wednesday.
Your sweetie sure takes good care of you!
Good going on getting your grades in!