Thursday, August 28, 2008

A trio of things

  1. I found out yesterday that I have at least one more class than I anticipated to complete before petitioning for the nursing program. This means I probably won't get into the nursing program for Fall 2009.
  2. I have to take a math placement exam to get out of a Basic Algebra requirement. Thank God for Ry. I started looking over the practice test last night and felt like I was reading Greek. Ry had to remind me how to get started with almost every problem. The good news is that once he reminded me, it all came flooding back. Like riding a bike?
  3. T was pissed at me yesterday. He spent Monday and Tuesday evening with Ryan and then I left him with a babysitter for a few hours yesterday afternoon so I could go to the advising office and get my student ID. When I got home, he cried and went to the babysitter to be picked up. *Sound of heart breaking* He calmed down pretty quickly, but when Ry came home he once again wanted nothing to do with me. He seems to be better today and even gave me an unprompted kiss. I sort of figured he might be sad when I was gone more often. I never figured on angry. Of course, maybe he's just over me.

Thank goodness for lab assistants

The lab assistant for my Tuesday night lab is as good as the professor for Monday night lecture was bad. She's quirky, lectures at a pace people have a chance of keeping up with, uses diagrams, models and (occasionally) herself to explain things. The evening was largely a review of the Professor's lecture. She made concepts simple and clear instead of using every piece of technical jargon at her fingertips to make us poor students feel like schmoes. It was the 3rd time I got this material (from the Prof and reading the book), and finally feel like I'm getting a handle on it. I'm still making notecards, but I'm really glad I don't have self-teach the entire class.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Things I learned in BIO 103 last night

1. I have been spoiled by social science professors who are good teachers. This woman could write the book on how not to give a lecture:
  • Make sure that people can't take notes and listen to you at the same time.
  • Go through your slides so fast people can't copy the whole thing.
  • Don't use any diagrams or visual aids when explaining new concepts.
  • Assume your students actually know everything you're talking about already.
  • Give a 15 minute break and then start class again in 7 or 8.
2. Fully 2/3 of the class are non-traditional students and fully 1/3 are older than me.
3. About 85% of the class was female.
4. This is a really different kind of learning for me. The first 5 years of college were about concepts and conceptual thinking. This class is memorization and jargon. I'm going to have to break out the flashcards.
5. I don't know that I can take 3 of these science/lab classes plus a math class in the spring. We'll have to see how much study time this class actually takes.
6. I still feel good about my choice.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Common Sense Triumphs!

I just received an email from the woman in the nursing department who reviewed my transcripts. After reviewing them again she decided to give me credit for English Comp I and II. She may not have known what to do with the AP credit on my transcripts the first time around. Either way, after spring semester I should have all my prereqs completed. Hooray!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Seriously, eat a sandwich

Last night I watched the women's platform diving semifinals. Two young women from China have dominated the diving competition so far. Wang Xin is 16 years old. I am amazed that her body allows her to do the intensely physical dives I watched for the better part of an hour.

The commentators repeatedly mentioned how she makes practically no splash entering the water. I can't help but think that she couldn't make much of a splash. She's like 4'10" and can't weigh 70 pounds. Dude, someone feed this girl.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


T and I were playing in the backyard today when I saw that one of our zucchinis was ready to be picked. I picked it and put it on the steps leading into the house so I would remember to take it inside later. As we were playing, T took off around the side of the house. I followed him, only to see him holding the zucchini triumphantly above his head and shouting "Nini, nini!!"

Monday, August 18, 2008

Somewhat Ironic

The woman in the nursing department was true to her word and had my transcripts reviewed by the time she left on Friday. I got credit for my general education requirements as well as the Intro to Psychology course that is a requirement of the nursing program. I didn't get credit for either English Composition I or II. I got a 4 or 5 on my AP English exam and took a honors English class my freshman year to fulfill the Comp II requirement. I also taught 3 semesters of Composition I when I was getting my master's at U of I. I need to retake Comp I and II? Really?

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Oooh, so angry

T is having some issues with "no" the past couple of days. Today he was mauling the cat and Ry had already told him "no" several times. Finally, he pulled T off the cat and told him that if he couldn't be nice, he couldn't play with the kitty.

T threw a royal fit. He stomped his legs and threw his hands in air for a good 90 seconds or so. He cried and turned red. I had to leave the room because I was giggling. He was sooo angry. I remember punching pillows and stomping up stairs as a kid. I wonder if my parents giggled downstairs too. Acorn --- Tree.

Friday, August 15, 2008

I thought we covered this

Most of the time, T is a really great baby. He's getting pretty good at understanding me and generally listens when I say "no." Every once in a while, he decides he is going to do something, and it just doesn't matter what I say.

Today we were playing outside when he walked over to look at one of my tomato plants. At the beginning of the summer, he wanted to pull the heads off all my flowers. It took the better part of a month, but I convinced him that we smell flowers, not pick them. The rest of the summer, he'd been a plant-smelling fool.

But not today. Today he went over and plucked a little green tomato off my plant, even after I told him "no." I pulled him away from the plant and told him more forcefully that we don't pull things off plants. Then we went back to playing on the slide.

A few minutes later, he walked back over to the tomatoes. I thought "no problem, he's already gotten in trouble once today." He looked at me, as I told him "no" and pulled another green tomato from the plant. After another scolding, we resumed slide time again. Then over he went for a third time. This time I got to him just before another baby tomato fell victim to the tomato killing toddler. How many times do I have to say "no"? He obviously doesn't like being scolded (judging by the crying), but still continues to do things he knows he's not supposed to. What gives? Infuriating.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

I laughed until I cried too

Fireman Cake

Ry and I just spent half an hour reading every post of Cake Wrecks. I haven't laughed that hard in a long time.

PG-13, Really?

I recently watched two movies (Jumper and The Dark Knight) that are rated PG-13. I didn't enjoy either very much. Truly, I'm blown away that the violence in these movies didn't earn them an R. I'd like to remind everyone that Blazing Saddles is rated R. Would it even earn a PG-13 if it came out today?

I spend a good portion of the Dark Knight covering my eyes like a little girl. I still got to watch the Joker impale a person's head with a pencil. The movie also implied other gruesome violence. Jumper was no better. Samuel Jackson's character slits a man from stomach to throat. Any boobies, however, and the film gets an R. For my money, I'd rather my 13 year old watch nekked people all day than watch people kill each other in an up close and gruesome manner.

In which my faith is restored

My transcripts have been located! The woman I spoke to in the nursing department took a day to track down my transcripts. At least someone has a brain. What's better is that she is having them sent over today and will try to have them reviewed by Friday! I really hope that the 4 month transcript drama is over.

Monday, August 11, 2008

The Saga of My Transcripts

Grrr. Grrrr. Grrrrrrr.

I contacted my high school and colleges in April and had them send my transcripts to the school where I am starting my prerequisites in 2 weeks. Apparently, the school could not match my maiden name to my married name (even though they ask for it on the application and it's in their online system). It took me 2 months and many phone calls to get this straightened out. I thought my transcripts would now go to the nursing department to be reviewed so I would know what classes I would have to take.


The nursing department only gets transcripts for review once a month. According to the school's online system and the guy I talked to in the admissions office, my transcripts were officially "received" on June 10. That should mean that they went to the nursing department the first of July. According to the people I talked to at the admissions office, my review should have been completed by the first week of August. The first week of August I again contacted the admissions office. "Gee, I don't know why we haven't gotten them back from nursing. Why don't you wait another week?" Oh, OK. So I called again last Friday when the review was still not online. "Gee, I don't know, why don't you call the nursing office?"


The woman from the nursing office called me back today. She doesn't have my transcripts. Not under my married name, not under my maiden name. Doesn't have them. She didn't get them in July and she didn't get them in August. So I ask her what I should do now, because, seriously. She tells me she honestly doesn't know what to recommend. She said that she'll call the woman she deals with in admissions to see if she can track down my transcripts. Where are my transcripts? Transcript purgatory? At this rate, they won't be reviewed by the time I need to register for classes for the spring. I can't register for classes until my transcripts have been reviewed. AAAAAHHHHHHH. My head is going to explode.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Sesame Place: A Play in 3 Acts

Act 1: Where Are My Pants?

Yesterday afternoon we decided to hit Sesame Place for a couple of hours. A friend of ours was spending the day with her nephews, so we thought we'd join them. After T woke up from his nap, we gathered the necessary supplies: sun screen, towels, swim suits, snacks, water, passes, etc. We hopped in the car and away we went. Sesame Place is about a 20 minute drive from our house. There was also about a 15 minute wait for parking when we arrived. We finally got parked, got out our stuff and realized we left T's swim trunks sitting on the love seat at home. Oops.

So we set off to find a pair of trunks at Sesame Place. After a few stops we found a pair (which really are pretty cute), for $17. Ouch. We bought the size T should need next summer, so at least they'll last for a while. After our visit, we got back to the car when Ry realized there was a pair of T's trunks in the car from our swim lesson earlier this week. Beautiful.

Act 2: OCD is CDO When It Is Alphabetized Like It Should Be

One of T's favorite attractions is one called "Big Bird's Nest." It is a round, squishy surface with tons of squishy shapes to play with. T particularly likes to bring me different shapes and stack them up. Each time he brought me a shape, another little boy (who was probably 3ish) would come over and toss the shape back into the circle. T finally brought me a shape and stayed to "play" it. Meanwhile, the Shape Police came over and tried to throw his shape back in the circle. I had a good 5 minute conversation with this little person about how it was OK for the shape to be outside the circle for a little while. He disagreed vehemently. He spent 5 minutes convincing me that the shape didn't belong outside the circle and he had to toss it back it. He ended up winning the argument when T left to play with something else and I let him throw the square back into the circle. It's a good thing too, because I think his little head was about to explode.

Act 3: The Fun-Sapping Troll

The Fun Police was on patrol at Big Bird's Nest yesterday. Chris, the Fun-Sapping Troll was manning the Nest. T kept trying to explore an area under the stairs. As far as I could tell, there was nothing sharp, dangerous or icky there, so I let him. Patrolman Chris went over and herded T back into the circle. OK, I thought, maybe he's worried that no one is actively watching T. So I went over and stood a couple of feet from T as he explored this area. Chris Troll again (without saying a word to me) came over and herded T back into the circle. Ogreman then tromped over to a little girl and yelled at her for wearing shoes inside the circle. I mean yelled, not raised his voice. Our friend Schmucky then stood watch over the nest, glowering at all the happy little children. The Asshat's final act was to scream at a couple of kids who were wrestling on the circle. Both were laughing, and no one's parents were getting involved. "This Is Sesame Place" quoth Chris, the Demon Goblin, "No Fun Allowed!"

Friday, August 08, 2008

How popular are you?

Along the lines of my sister's cool movie charts, I recently discovered that the social security administration keeps lists of the top 1000 baby names for every year since 1880. For example, the year I was born, my first name was the most popular girl's name and my middle name was 10th. Hooray for the country's most generic name. My name was also the most popular girl's name for 15 years. 15 years!! My mother always told me that she didn't realize my name was so popular when she named me. Ah hem. It had been the most popular girl's name for 9 years before I was born. Hazy memories? Anyway, it's kind of cool, take a look.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

A baby lexicon

  • Uh-oh (uh-oh): Used to indicate that something has fallen on the floor, someone has tripped, food has been thrown on the floor, etc.
  • Wow (wow): Something is freaking awesome
  • Mama (Mommy)
  • Da-Dee (Daddy)
  • Dootee (Cookie or Turkey): Uh, cookie or turkey
  • Nini (Zucchini)
  • Nana (Banana): Banana, also most fruit, but not blueberries
  • Bu (Blueberries)
  • Ep (Up): I want up, I'm up now, You're up
  • Bruuu (Brrrr): It's cold
  • Moom (Mummu): Mummu Jo
  • Pees (Please)
  • Maaaaaw (Meow): Meow, and kitty ... sometimes puppy

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

A confession

Sometimes I put on Veggie Tales so I can snuggle with him for 20 minutes.

Facebook = Reunion Death?

I realize that I'm not truly the facebook generation (my final year of my master's program was the year it really got started), but I have reconnected with lots of high school, college, and Disney friends from long ago. It's all a bit surreal to be chatting with people you haven't talked to in 10+ years. I didn't attend my 10 year high school reunion last summer. Anyone I was interested in talking to I had already reconnected with through facebook or another social networking site.

I have to wonder, is facebook the death sentence for reunions? Schools are going to have to get creative with sucking money from their alumni if people aren't interested in showing back up every 10 years or so. I have been having coffee/meals/adult beverages with old friends when we're both back home. As far as I'm concerned, I never need to attend a reunion.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Books and Awesomeness

I just bought my books for my (one) class this semester. They're going to cost about $250. I've had entire full time semesters when my books didn't cost that much. I digress.

One of my "books" is "An Interactive Cadaver Dissection Experience." I'm distressingly torn between "Awesome" and "Really?" I wouldn't have guessed a freshman level biology class would need a cadaver dissection experience. Also, my materials for next semester's bio class include a dissection kit. Concerned. Does nursing curriculum include actual cadaver dissection? I would that level of knowledge wouldn't be required unless you were, say, going to be a doctor or surgeon. Seriously, does anyone know? The short descriptions I've read of the courses don't say anything about it. Ahh, but wait, my lab materials say "Cat Version." Hmmm. Mystery solved. How does that make you feel, Chief?
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