Saturday, April 26, 2008

As promised

I thought I had more, but they're all old. However, I think this one's pretty sweet. She chose to curl up in the bookshelf next to the couch:

Today is my sister's bridal shower, which is why I can't join Scarlet, Feathernester, and Ouiser in CNY!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Technology: Mixed Feelings

I went on Amazon today and it opened with their newest device, the Kindle. Has anyone else seen this? In and of itself, it stands as an absolutely mindboggling piece of equipment: It's a wireless reading device. As the product features crow
  • no syncing needed
  • high resolution screen makes it look ("and read") like paper
  • the wireless feature means you can add books to it from anywhere
  • more than 111,000 books available, including many bestsellers
  • access to many popular blogs, newspapers, and magazines
  • can hold over 200 titles
  • lighter than a paperback
  • long battery life
  • does laundry, taxes, and gives you a massage all at the same time
Ok, that last I made up. As I wrote, I find it an amazing new technological breakthrough, albeit pricey ($400), but I have mixed feelings. I understand the love and need for technology, the idea of a paperless society and saving trees, etc. However, a Kindle, no matter how fancy, just doesn't beat a real book in my mind. Many readers make notes in the margins, underline, scribble definitions, or simply dog-ear pages they want to remember for whatever reason. And there's just nothing better, in my mind, than curling up with a good book and then grabbing it off the shelf months or years later to look at again. Would I ever exchange my Harry Potters for a Kindle version? Not on your life. I remember where I bought my books, when I read them, who I read them with.... To me the idea of a Kindle, while revolutionary, just doesn't cut it. We need to get away from the glow of the ubiquitous screen that we've all become so accustomed to, and I'm no exception.

Maybe this is just the wave of the future and I have to live with it. Maybe I'm being an old fuddy-duddy. The irony that I write about this on a computer which then sends it out into the Blogosphere to anyone who wants to read it does not escape me. But I'd still rather have a real book than a computer copy of one. I have my great-grandmother's books from when she traveled to France; I have my father's old copy of short stories by Roald Dahl. How do you pass down a Kindle to the next generation?

That's my rant for the day, my dears. Now I'm off to let out the puppy and read Macbeth, in a hard-bound, paper pages book. Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

I'm back

Still here! I didn't write for a while because 1) my job hunt did not go as well as I had hoped; I found that out the Tuesday before break and didn't feel like doing much of anything in the way of blogging, 2) last week we did have break and I didn't go near the computer because it was so gorgeous out that I spent hours on my screened-in porch reading and playing with the puppy. I came back to 80 messages in my inbox (most from the NY Times and Ann Taylor Loft).

Fortunately, I did get a silver lining: The woman who I hoped would take another year of maternity leave is indeed doing so, so I get to stay. This helps a lot, although things are still up in the air for the year after that. We'll see what happens, but it makes me feel a lot more secure to know I have a job next year. Clutch heart, laugh with relief.

I have so many terrific Penny pics I need to post and fun stories to tell--it's all on its way, promise!

I will say one cool thing: For the past two days I've slowly prepared the students for reading Macbeth by teaching them about Elizabethan language. I have them write their own conversations, teach them some "thee" and "thy" pronouns and a few fun Shakespearean words, and then have them rewrite the sentences. So, I'm getting a lot of "How wast thy break?" "Cool. How about thou?", but what do I care? They're getting it. The best happened yesterday when they broke up into groups and I handed each of them a weirdly worded Shakespeare sentence with each word on a different index card. They then had to put the sentence together. They all came up with something slightly different but still Shakespearean, and they friggin' loved it. I loved seeing them so excited about making a sentence. They even asked for more! How much better does it get? Who knows if they'll have the same thrill once we get into the real play, but I'll just keep looking back on this as a good day.

Question: Who was your favorite teacher and why?

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Miss Funnypenny, doing my civic duty

Well, after a brief bout of illness with the puppy over which T and I both panicked and raced her to the vet (well, we got my MIL to do it since we were both at work--thank you!!!!), Penny is on the mend and loving her chicken and rice we've given her to settle her stomach. On the one hand, I'm sure we didn't need to freak out, but on the other, she's so tiny and helpless, and to see her so draggy got us worried. Fortunately, we have a good vet and an excellent, understanding vet friend (thanks so much, J!), and we're good to go. Thus, I have new pics to share in celebration of Penny's First Illness (no, I did not document it):

Tasting T's head

Who's scaring whom?

Sleeping comfortably

(I took this at the exact second she finished a yawn, trying to get it midway. I love the result I got.)

Playing in the kitchen

Happy ladies

Today I had jury duty, which consisted of me sitting in a room, albeit a comfortable chair, grading papers while I waited for them to call my name. At noon they called my group in to tell us that, while we could leave, because of some situation they have to have us come back again tomorrow. And so justice moves on. For you Simpsons fans, there was a guy named Robert Terwilliger in there, aka Sideshow Bob. On a positive note, I did get to come home early to my puppy, who then fell asleep in my lap for an hour. You can't complain about anything with a lap full of warm puppy.