Sunday, November 11, 2007

busy, busy, busy

This school year is charging nonstop at me.

Tuesday night finishes up a class I picked up for the local Kaplan office at the last minute. The Centennial HS Production of Romeo & Ethel... I mean, Juliet goes up on Tuesday. If you've missed the news somewhere along the line, because I know a thing or 8 about how to handle a sword (thanks to Lansing Community College; search for PFSP107 & Durendal), I let the director know that I'd help with the fight scenes, forgetting there are as many in the play as there are. It's been chewing up massive quantities of my time lately, and only the volunteer services of a member of The Point (the local fencing club) are going to help make sure things pull together in time.

What with conferences last weekend, hosting Thanksgiving, and working an AP course for the first time since I was teaching at Durham Tech, I often feel like I don't have the time to be an effective husband or father.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

out of the loud darkness

I've been dead quiet for a while because I haven't had time to think, let alone write.

The short update, with hopefully more to come in the next couple weeks:
- The house closing was a nightmare, because the buyers of our house had been trying for a loan through Countrywide, right as the mortgage market was busy blowing up.
- I'm now teaching chemistry & AP Chemistry at Centennial HS in Champaign.
- All of our free time has been devoted to painting the house or getting other, similar projects done. We've finally decided that we're going to hire somebody to finish the painting, especially because we have the paint bought for every room but one (where we're still deciding what to do).

One more quick story added in to the post Kirstin just wrote on Leo's blog.

More later.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

things proceed apace

Tomorrow is inspection day on both houses. We're not expecting any surprises either place, but that's why they would be called surprises if they show up.

I spent most of the week trying to get the various bits of paperwork assembled and filled out for applying for an IL teaching license. It's a pain, because they don't have a true reciprocal license agreement with anybody, and so it means that I have to go through the application and evaluation process all over again. This on top of teaching applications really meaning that you have to go through the whole things twice for every school, once for the district's HR office and again with the principal of the individual school.

We spent yesterday visiting some cousins of mine in High Point, plus my sister & brother-in-law. The latter two then came back to our house for some additional visiting that was always planned to be overnight. They generously offered to go let us have fun (by watching the film version of Harry Potter & the Order of the Phoenix) while they babysat. 'Twas a good adaptation, although Kirstin & both pity anybody who walks into it without a thorough knowledge of the previous films -- or even better the books.

Speaking of books, this Friday is Release Day for Deathly Hallows. The Leaky Cauldron (an excellent source of news, although less usable after they made it bright and shiny a couple years back) has a prediction quiz for events that may or may not happen during Book VII. This is the last week that you can take it, since after Friday night you'll (theoretically) have all the answers. Those who want insight into the Harry-er parts of my brain can go look here.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

On houses and the hunting thereof

Under the assumption that nothing kills either deal in the inspections, we not only managed to find a house in Urbana, but we think we have a deal on our house here. The latter isn't yet signed, sealed, and delivered, but we think it's very, very close.

I'm now working on deciphering how, if at all, the process of applying for an IL teaching license changes for somebody who's moving in from out-of-state. I have a feeling that it's going to involve much time with a high-speed connection and playing lots and lots of phone jockey, since it really looks like I have to do everything that a newly graduating teacher does, plus.

somehow, that's just not right.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

busy, busy, busy

The extended silence in these parts is because Kirstin accepted a job at the University of Illinois last Thursday. I've since been frantically in prep-the-house-for-market mode, especially as we want to list it this weekend, before we head out to house-hunt.

We've repainted most of the house, with the last few bits trying to come together in the next 36-48 hours.

More details next week, after things settle down.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

louver = bad!

No news for Kirstin on the job front, and the suspense is killing us both!

I have decided that spray paint and paint guns were invented by somebody who had a houseful of louver doors to paint. We've got 4 on the closets in our bedroom, and I just got started on those today in the midst of working on getting the house ready to sell. I've got wall repair to do in a few rooms, beyond simply patching where pictures had been. There's some other miscellaneous things to do as well, but the goal (unreachable though it might be) is to have all the rooms repainted by the beginning of next week.

Nothing else new to report right now.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

almost done

I'm at work today to do some lab clean-up, now that I've got a trash can for getting rid of junk and some industrial-strength paper towels for working with glassware. I think I'll be asked to help deal with some science-specific questions at an interview for a possible replacement next week. Otherwise, I'll have handed keys in by the end of the week.

There were many times that I was frustrated this year, most often with the entitled mentality of the 8th graders that I had. And yet, I'm going to miss the school and the people in it. Some of the people that I would miss most are also leaving -- Mr. Reinke is moving to Philadelphia because his wife is starting a surgical internship/residency there (I never remember which of the two is right after med. school), Coach Hughes is starting a new position with the Partnership for a Drug-Free North Carolina, and Ms. Chisolm just decided it was time. I've got students I'd love to see through the next year as they get ready to graduate, and others that I'd like to see whether grow up because of what happened to them this year. That, and finding a new job is always just a bit scary.

My father-in-law is arriving around noon to help us with some of the house-prep projects as we get ready to put it on the market. If we're lucky, we'll know by the weekend where we're going; it's more realistically going to be Monday or so. Friends and family can be sure that we'll let them know as soon as we do.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

KHS memories

I've spent the last year working at Kestrel Heights School, a 6-12 charter school in Durham. It's really wanting to write this post that spurred my launch of this blog, as referenced earlier -- it's personal to me, and doesn't really fit the idea of Boy, n: A noise with dirt on it being Leo's baby book.

Friday morning was the 8th grade awards ceremony. It was one of those events where everybody gets something, so you can think of it as a "real" awards ceremony or not as you wish. The whole 8th grade staff helped present the certificates. It was really the first good chance I'd had to bring up the news of my departure to the 8th graders since Kirstin got her offer from School A. I didn't make it through without crying. When the last awardee was asking me not to cry, it only made things worse.

The following night was a smaller awards ceremony for students in all grades designed to honor the students of the year. I presented the 11th grade award, and the recipient was crying afterward. There are several students I've had this year that I'll miss tremendously. Some of them I would have missed anyway, as they were returning to the public school system for high school.

There was yet another awards ceremony Tuesday morning on the last day of school. It's a standing offer to students in my core classes (read: non-electives) that the student with the highest academic average for the year in each class period gets a book of their choice. This year's winners chose Twilight, by Stephanie Meyer; The Golem's Eye, by Jonathon Stroud, and Stardust, by Neil Gaiman. (The last student actually allowed me to pick for her, sort of -- she didn't know what she wanted, and I took a good guess based on other things I'd seen her read during the year.)

Tomorrow is the next game night at my friend Rick's, and there's a parent of somebody who would have been a student of mine next year that I think will want more details than I could comfortably talk about on Saturday.

We're going to try to go to Sunday's Durham Bulls game, if it isn't sold out. It's the only thing I asked about for Father's Day.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


First, bonus points to those who can identify the source of the title. I'll let you know in a month or so, if you haven't figured it out.

I've had some more personal things that I've wanted to post, but that haven't been appropriate for "Boy, n.:", which is really more of Leo's baby book than anything else.

A few of those thoughts will show up here in the next few days, but at the moment it's time for me to leave work.