Oct. 31st, 2009 07:30 pm
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We've lived here for 21 Halloweens without one trick-or-treater, even when there were two little girls next door. That's how it goes when when your driveway is a quarter-mile right-of-way cut out of someone else's pasture. My kids used to go trick-or-treating with friends who lived in town. This is the first year Mungo (almost 14) hasn't gone; he would have gone if his friends did, but they didn't. He did go to a Haunted Corn Maze with them.

I meant to hand out candy at my house, but when I got there I realized that my lack of gutters + the recent blizzard + the current balmy temperatures = melting snow dripping on the heads of those who mount my front steps. So the better part of neighborliness was to leave my lights off.

I did clear away several big branches the blizzard had broken off the catalpa, which were obstructing the sidewalk, and swept up all the wet slippery leaves. Which means my brush pile, which I had been stomping down and hemming in with cinder blocks, has grown out-of-bounds again. Neighborliness is hard.

Nixie is having a movie night/sleepover at a friend's house. Hugh, Mungo, and I are watching the first season of Battlestar Galactica.

I called my mom back yesterday. She told me she had had surgery for breast cancer the day before yesterday. They caught it early and got it all, so no chemo, no radiation.

It's amazing that I've figured out how to have communication and relationships even as well as I have. Amazing, I tell you. I am grateful for all the help I've had from Hugh, Nixie, and Mungo.

I'm going to do NaNoWriMo this year.

snow day

Oct. 29th, 2009 11:25 pm
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Snow! and lots of it! PSD schools were closed today and yesterday. Unfortunately, CSU didn't close until the afternoon, so I had to drive Nixie to her math class. There was a quiz, and Nixie isn't doing well enough to skip it.

The math class -- it's basically the second half of Thomas's Calculus -- is surprisingly difficult. Not because of the material. After the lecture on partial differentials Nixie said she had paid attention, but still didn't understand what they were. So I got a vase and a marker, and drew parallel lines on the vase from base to lip. "This is y=0. y=1. y=2." Then I took a toothpick and surfed it up and down one of the lines. "The partial differential with respect to x gives us information about how x changes while we hold y constant." I put down the toothpick, picked up the marker, and started drawing circles around the vase. "This is x=0."

"Okay, I get it," said Nixie. She glared at how obvious it was. "She's such a bad teacher!"

"No," I said, "I'm such a good one." But I think Nixie is right. Her teacher is really not good at teaching.

About the house: I thought I could have at least a virtual housewarming party this weekend, but no. The plasterer will probably be done sometime next week, and then I can move in. This weekend, I am using Samhain's energy to finish things at this house.


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