Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Catching up...

Well, if anyone is still out there reading, I thought I'd catch you up on a few things in my life. First off, I'm failing at my New Year's Resolution to write more! ;-) Oh well!

My teaching duties (one class, one day a week) started back on the 5th of January. the past two weeks I've been teaching my class (middle school Life Science) and substituting for the teacher in the middle school Physical Science class. It's been fun. I taught most of the students in that class last year, and will probably have most of them in Biology next fall. The double preps have taken a bit more time, especially since physical science (in this case light, color and color mixing) isn't my area of knowledge. However, it's been fun to rediscover it all.

I'm also in the process of finding a book to use for my high school Biology class in the fall. The book we've been using is 7 or 8 years old now. It was published before the Human Genome Project, so I want something more up-to-date. I am looking at two possibilities right now, neither which totally thrill me. When i settle on a book I need to start prepping for the fall-- reading and making class notes, and developing my labs to go with each lesson. Hopefully I can use a lot of the labs I have now.

We decided to adopt a cat from a rescue group in our area, and ended up with two! They are both adults (1 yr old and 2 yrs old). One is a a solid grey with a white bib, several white paws, and a cute little white "comma" that goes over his nose. His name is Jasper Darlington Higgins IV. The other is a soft grey tabby with buff (very light orange) markings, plus a white bib and white toes. His name is Fiddlesticks. (If you have ever read The Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wrede, you'll recognize the names as two of Morwen's cats.) Jasper has big round amber eyes, while Fiddles has slanted, almond-shaped eyes.

Both cats have been living in our bedroom since Sunday afternoon. They are good cats, but we haven't gotten a great deal of sleep. They're exceptionally sweet and affectionate. They purr when you look at them! Unfortunately this means that at 4 a.m. they're ready to snuggle and be petted, so they wake us up. I'm hoping we can let them have the run of the house soon.

They are "bomb-proof," meaning they don't get upset about much. They showed slight interest in our dog, and have been totally nonchalant with our resident cat, Neko. Unfortunately, to date Neko is anything but nonchalant about them! He is one angry cat. When he sees them (which has been rare, since we're trying to introduce them slowly), he puffs all his hair out to twice his normal size. this is impressive, since he is already a really large cat, weighing in at 15.5 lbs. The two cats we adopted are about 8 to 10 lbs. (In other words, normal cat size.)

Cookie, the dog, is great friends with the cats now. She was incredibly interested in them, but mostly I think she wanted to be where the action was. She always stays in my room with me when I am working or watching TV. So when the cats came, she didn't want to be left out in the hall. I think she decided that getting along with the cats meant being with us.

Yesterday was my anniversary! (24 years) It was a really busy carpool-and-school day, so we didn't celebrate, but Will brought me a card and a stuffed Beanie Baby race horse! :-D Hannah and the kids bought us a beautiful bouquet of roses. I was so surprised and pleased. This coming weekend Will and I have tickets to an art exhibit (Landscapes int he Age of Impressionism), and plan to be gone for the weekend. Our next door neighbor gave us a gift card this Christmas good for several area restaurants. Will and I plan to use that next weekend as well. (I take care of their animals when they go out of town, so this was a "thank you" gift.) We plan to take in at least one movie, too.

I'm reading Crazy for God by Frank Schaeffer and enjoying it. He shoots from the hip, but doesn't pretend that his views aren't biased. I am enjoying his sometimes brutal honesty, but I am also enjoying the obvious love and respect he had for his parents, too. I plan to post some quotes from the book if I have time. Having been to Swiss L'Abri in the mid-70's, I am very aware of the atmosphere and attitudes he describes.

We've been working through some of the videos we got for Christmas. Most are re-watches, like Transformers, Harry Potter 5, and Stardust. But I have a few that I've never seen, so I'm looking forward to those.

I hope you're year is going well so far!


Dancingirl said...

I'm reading! Happy Anniversary! It's great to hear what you're doing. Loved reading about the cats. They definitely have personalities and favorite people. Sometimes I wonder if they think we're their humans! Hope they all get along soon.

I'd like to read some quotes from the Frank Schaeffer book.

Katrina365 said...

I enjoyed reading your update. Happy Anniversary (a bit late). Cats are so entertaining!