So, it's now nearly 6 months (!) into the new year - where the heck have I been, you might be asking?
Well, here's a little recap:
January: I spent the month mostly trying to recover from too much Christmas spending, and preparing to teach a course at San Jose State University. The class officially started at the end of Jan, so I was struggling to prepare lectures, get the syllabus on track and make sure I understood what the heck I was supposed to do. It was eye opening, to say the least.
February: Man, that month was rough. I started teaching two days a week, MW from 9-10:15. It's a 30 min (at least) commute from Stanford, where I was still working my real job. I re-worked and re-submitted my first first author paper from my current Stanford job. I prepared lectures, quizzes, and group work, wrote an exam, and tried to get the hang of teaching. My class was great - I loved the students and I got a ton of energy from them. But man, it's hard. I also had a miscarriage. That really sucked. A lot. Actually, words don't really do it justice. I dropped my phone in the toilet. I lost all the pictures from Christmas in CO, and everything from Jan. And I had to buy a new phone. There goes $700 down the drain. Literally. I also went home to celebrate my Dad's birthday and little Christa's bday (they share the same bday). It was so nice to see family and just hang out and chill. And we stopped off at Madonna Inn on the way home, which is really spectacular. You should go.
March: March was mostly hunker down and survive mode. It rained a ton. D got a big boy bed. We worked a lot. My first first author manuscript from Stanford was accepted. My manuscript from my graduate work at Penn that took 10 years to get submitted was reviewed and resubmitted. We worked a lot. We went to a lot of Easter Egg hunts. My parents came to visit for Easter and it was nice and mellow. The best Easter Egg hunt we went to was in the forest near our house. It was in a big field with lots of grass. Real eggs were hidden. The volunteer fire department was there, including a bunny in firefighter boots. D got to shoot water out of the fire hose. We took Grandma and Grandpa to the Santa Cruz boardwalk, and it was a blast. D loved the rides and the beach. It was perfect. I wrote another exam. I had Spring Break from SJSU.
April: April was continue the hunker down and work mode. D was starting to get irritated with the early mornings and long days. He started to act out and be upset more and to express his opinion more and more. His eating got more picky and his sleeping got more unstable. He likes to snuggle a lot. He started singing all the time. I gave more lectures, more quizzes, more group work and more exams. I got to know the students more and I actually met with some of them for coffee and encouraged them to pursue the things they were interested in. We went to a birthday party for the kid of an SJSU colleague. My paper from my grad work was accepted and published, officially ending any ties to my old boss and making my resume look pretty nice with two papers in two months. We sent our car to the shop, and they kept it for 2 weeks. We were so nervous that they would charge us a ton of money, but it ended up being only $300 and we breathed a sigh of relief (and it's fixed - hooray!).
May: I continued teaching, writing one last final exam and giving out extra credit points like candy. We went to the SF zoo, which was pretty cool. It was the first time D went to the zoo and I think he really liked it. D barfed one morning on the way to school, so we ended up going home. He actually helped me hose down his car seat and was a really helpful boy to me. Hard to believe he's growing up before my eyes. He's getting more used to our crazy odd schedule. He sleeps better, and kinda eats better, at least at school. He's still clingy and doesn't want me to leave when I drop him off. He wants to wear underwear, but has yet to go on the potty. He just holds it. I am hoping this is temporary. I take him to SJSU one day and then to the Children's Discovery Museum, where his greatest delight is either the full (real) fire truck in the entrance, or the empty dancing room playing lots of different kinds of music. He runs and dances and plays in that room for a long time. We went to the beach, watching people ride horses up and down it. We fed the ducks at the pond. We baked brownies. Last week, we went to the airport to pick up Uncle Taylor and Cousin K. D absolutely loves K and followed her every move. We went all over SF - Golden Gate Bridge, Pier 39, Hard Rock Cafe, Ghirardelli Square, Chinatown, cable car. It was a fun day. We spend two days at the beach, checking out a really good seafood place and the warmer lagoon in Half Moon Bay one day and then the real HMB beach another. We showed them the redwoods and the cliffs and the beach and Stanford. And our house drain clogged, so Alex and Taylor got to play fix it kids. It was a nice visit, but a little exhausting. And now, here I am - last day of the month. I still need to post grades, but the semester is over. I'm exhausted, both physically and emotionally. And I'm so glad I don't have to make that commute down to SJSU anymore. I am looking forward to a few weeks here in lab, writing and doing experiments to hopefully getting out two more papers this year. Keep your fingers crossed. I'll try to post some pics of our adventures.