Sunday, November 18, 2007

A blog from Illinois:

I am over at the Illinois grandparent's house for Sunday dinner. The Rams game is on in the other room. I watched the Packer game earlier, at home, and got my fill of sport for the day. Given the record, it's hard to maintain much interest in the Rams. Elliot was wearing his Packer jersey for the game, but is now in a button up sleeper more conducive to travel. He slept most of the way over here, unlike last time, which involved screaming from the highway exit ramp to grandpa's front door.

For the most part he travels well. Yesterday had gorgeous weather and so we took him up to the Botanical Gardens for his first artistic/cultural outing. We rolled him around in his all-terrain stroller and took him to feed to Koi in the Japanese Garden. We have a membership to the garden and try to get over there every few weeks. I was inspired by our trip to spend a little time on our plants. I finally dug the canna root up and put it in the garage to dry. I don't think it'll freeze in there just yet. Our Christmas cactus is blooming, I should post pictures.

Elliot had his third and fourth elevator rides while at the garden. We are still counting little things like that. He also had his first trip to a bar. After the garden we went to Dressel's Welsh Pub in the Central West End. Dressel's is a writer's bar, they do Day of the Dead celebrations and Bloomsday readings from Joyce; thus, it's a good place for Elliot to get his first taste of going "down the boozer".

We had his second pediatrician visit on Friday and all is going well. He is ten pounds now and still twenty one inches in length. We thought he was getting longer, but really he has just been filling out. His infant clothing fits him now. I guess he is at the 50th percentile for his weight and height, but he is in the 75th percentile for head size, which means he is taking after his father's huge cranium - "I'm not kidding, it's like an orange on a toothpick, it's a virtual planetoid, it has its own weather system".

I'm looking forward to Thanksgiving break. Work has been taking a lot out of me and I am still not really caught up from my maternity leave. As a side treat to myself I've been reading these young adult books: The Bartimaeus Trilogy by Jonathan Stroud. I'm in the middle of the second one and it is quite a pleasure to take a break from my usual required reading. Though, I have been teaching good books. I just finished teaching Heart of Darkness, the August Wilson play Fences, and I am currently teaching The Catcher in the Rye.

I regularly wonder about returning to college teaching. The market is tough, and now that I am the main source of income and insurance for my family I can't pay any adjunct dues. I've aged out of the slave labor pool that smaller colleges rely on. One can make a living teaching at multiple institutions as long as you are willing to drive all over the place, teach more than a full load, and live without health insurance. Yeah, those are some of the reasons that I went for the high school teaching certificate.

Ah well, I am being antisocial sitting in here blogging. I hope you are all well. Jes has links to our flickr accounts on her page. If you need a recent Elliot picture, slide over there for the latest pictures. She did a shoot with a white tiger that is very cute and also there are some tattoo shots that are nicely framed. Oh yeah, there are lots of baptism shots as well.


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