Tuesday, April 19, 2011


I have been BUSY you guys.

I have been working non-stop all semester on my new class. But then I decided to get fancy and submit an NSF proposal while I was at it. And also care for a newborn. In my free time.

My self-imposed deadline for the proposal was Sunday night. It was more like my millionth self-imposed deadline, but since it's due May 26 and I know it's going to have to go through a lot of edits (slash REWRITES) it needed to be done a lot sooner than that (like two weeks ago would have been perfect). I also had to write up some notes on my last three lectures for my students because (once again) I got fancy and used a different textbook for those lectures to supplement our textbook which lumped mid-latitude cyclones, severe thunderstorms, tornadoes, and hurricanes into one totally inadequate chapter.

(Nine chapters about rocks and ONE CHAPTER about severe thunderstorms, tornadoes, and hurricanes. REALLY?)

I don't regret that decision because those lectures were BY FAR the most fun I had all semester and the students were either really into it or really amused by the way I was stalking back and forth in front of the board ranting about updrafts and mesocyclones and eyewalls and storm surge damage.

So I had the notes to make, and I had to make a lecture for Thursday and for today. And I had to write my third exam also for today so someone could take it before leaving for a track meet. And the proposal.

And my work day pretty much starts at nine once everyone is in bed, the kitchen has been straightened, and I've spent five minutes talking to Ryan.

I worked all day on Saturday and all afternoon on Sunday. I worked every night until one o'clock. I sent the draft of the proposal off late on Sunday night. I finished the last chapter of lecture notes Monday afternoon while the kids (all three) watched Toy Story. I wrote the exam yesterday evening while our babysitter took the boys to the dining hall for dinner (They also went to a dorm. When I asked what the dorm was like Charlie's only comment was that "it smelled kind of funny").

And then, in a spectacular demonstration of just how well caring for preschoolers prepares you for teaching twenty-year-olds, I scrapped today's lecture, put on a Hurricane Katrina documentary, and passed out homemade cookies. After a little break everyone was ready to play nicely with the Playdoh again.

Add to that the way James sleep habits have been trending in the absolute WRONG direction and we've been taking turns getting up three or four times a night.

An unforseen benefit of all this? The lack of sleep has made me just bitchy enough to finally drive home the message that "we all pick up our own messes because there is too much work for just Mama to do."

When I came downstairs after putting James down tonight everyone was putting toys away and wiping counters down and I got so inspired I mopped the kitchen floor. Then spent several minutes walking around barefoot and marveling at the way my feet don't stick anymore.

Tomorrow I have to finally address the laundry situation and finish the proposal's budget. And possibly take a shower.


Sarah said...

TS Eliot was right-- April is the cruelest month, especially in academia. I have also been starting the second shift after the kids go to bed, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel! I have kind of missed the feeling of accomplishment that accompanies meeting a big deadline. Congrats on the proposal!

Dr. Maureen said...

Woah. I'm IMPRESSED. This is one of those times that you will look back on and wonder how in the hell you did that. :)

Arguably Ambitious said...

Ah, the second shift. I am taking the LSAT in June. I have 2 little ones and so totally get the late nights and the five minutes of time with the husband. I LOVE the weekends when I can actually get something done during the day! You are awesome for making it all work!!!

ANTM said...

Congratulations on the proposal! Here's to hoping things slow down for you sometime soon, :)

Rima said...

It is amazing to me that you still find the time to blog! But I'm really glad you do :)

Candy said...

Bec, you are positively an inspiration! I am going to try that floor mopping idea sometime soon...

AJU5's Mom said...

I would be dead with that schedule. I bet you are REALLY glad it is the end of the term and you can relax some this summer. Hopefully the older two have "school" through May so you get some much needed rest!