Today is today.
I forgot I had a blog. Seriously.
My memory is so bad I forget that my memory is bad.
I forget what I used to do, what my students' names are, what season it is, where I am, who I know.

I can write and think and read and I have my wits... but not my memory.
I hoped it would get better once my body got used to the medication that has basically taken away my pain, but instead I have a choice to make---
Do I try to wean off the medicine that has taken away my pain?

Oh, the picture above- we went to a dinner tonight put on by a group of international women. This group played Indian music.

When I got home, I remembered I had a blog and decided that I needed it to help me remember my life. That's what it's for.


We went to see John McCutcheon in concert last night. He is fantastic. We used to see him when we lived in Charlottesville because he lived there at the time too and would play concerts. He played the fiddle, banjo, piano, guitar, autoharp, hammer dulcimer, sang, and said poetry. Amazing. His stories were the best stories. 
He wrote that song, Christmas in the Trenches.
Watch and listen to it here:


I got to the last level on Train of Thought. It's very hard and I doubt I will ever master it. But it's fun to try. 47 trains.

It's March 20th, a Tuesday, and I didn't teach last night primarily because I had a headache (a migraine, really) but also because a massive storm was rolling into the state and there were warnings of tornadoes. They hit, but another university got them.


Why didn't I take two photos so one would have my mother's eyes open?
This is my mom and her 1st cousin VC. They both like clunky necklaces, see that?
I came home from the conference and the drove back to Atlanta today to pick VC up from downtown at another conference and we went to dinner tonight.
It was a long day.


Me on the top of the Westin at the conference having lunch with one of my doc students.


Another day in Atlanta. Cold.
in the dark in the rain.
I came in last
that was ok.


I'm in Atlanta with my students at a conference.
I'm staying on the 54th floor of a fancy hotel and this is my view.
I really like it up here.


Today my best friend from high school visited. We hadn't seen each other in over a decade. She brought a picture of us when we were teens and we re-created it.
I was so freaking cute!
But those bangs. No wonder my mother was always after me with scissors.


I got my hair done today- cut and colored. 
It took something like 3 hours.


My student I finally figured out how to make a gear adhere to this generator. She has designed an adaptor and 3D printed it.

I started getting interested in researching my mother's mother's side of the family.
This is Billy June Guy. That is what they called him. A dapper looking man. He had two wives and 12 children. He's my great great grandfather.


I sat outside today in the sun reading this book.


We got dressed up and went to a fancy dinner at the art museum to hear a famous photographer for National Geographic talk and show images. It was the most fun we'd had out in a long long time. What a great presentation! And the food was great too. We had a table with Mom and all our/her friends. 

This morning I spent ~3 hours at the pottery studio throwing bowls and working on the piece I did with my sisters.


Squirt went to the ER again today and actually got two MRIs. While we were waiting for the results, I didn't want to leave home so my student alw came over to work on our project together. We really made a great deal of progress. Squirt is OK. He has two bulging discs in his lumbar region which push out more when his sits or walks. He sees a neurologist Monday.


My grad student and I were testing analogues of nanotubes for a strength test. We tried a variety of materials and the winner was what we expected-- a hollow fiber, human hair. My human hair! 


LONG day. I had student advising all morning, meetings with grad students in the afternoon, and then taught this evening, I made up a story about a Nerdy kid who wanted to be Mean in order to help my students memorize the standardization equation for their test.


Today students came over to work. First alw came over to work on Snails stuff, then my Saudi student came over with her baby to work on her dissertation. I had a babysitter come over to watch the other three children. I really do hope my student finishes and graduates.


I got something off my to-do list today-- I organized my jewelry drawer.
Today I found out my colleague got promoted to Full Professor. I wonder if I ever will.

Squirt called tonight with a bad back situation. He worked today and came home with a lot of pain and discomfort. I'm really worried about him,


I play this brain game (my neurologist told me to) and one game with trains is really hard. You have to plan ahead and think quickly. I've played it a zillion times. Today I got my best score. Wow.
Dan is in Oregon with Squirt. they are ok.


Today is my mom's actual 84th birthday but I was too worried about Squirt to really even care. He is having really scary back problems and Dan is flying out there tomorrow to be with him. He spent several hours in the ER today without even being seen by a doctor.

Meanwhile the tulip tree is in bloom. I'll have to see when it was in bloom last year. 


I wanted to paint my sisters' fingernails-- give them manicures. I bought a color I thought they'd like and did the whole manicure thing. They liked it. We had dinner at Mom's and it felt like our old family,. Funny that way. When Dan and I were 21 the five of us would eat together every night (or so) when he was living here that one quarter.


My sisters are here for our mother's 84th birthday. I started this blog when she was still 73. Wow. We did a little clay project today where we put imprints in a roll of clay that we cut into three pieces. I'll color it once it's bisqued and then glaze it.


I met my friend for coffee today to kvetch about my life and all the things that seem to be going wrong. I noticed how nice her nails looked and took this surreal picture.
My "doodle in clay" came out of the kiln. Pretty interesting.


Today is Squirt's 27th birthday. I started this blog in January 2007 when he was still 16 years old. Wow.
Today I worked on creating some nanomaterial analogues using my hair and other fibers.

My new pattern from the kiln.


Posting those photos yesterday of my birth father and me spurred my 1st cousin Barb, whom I've never met, to get in touch with me. She sent me a photo of her father's father, my actual grandfather.
A grandfather I'd never met. I think he was a drinking man-- an engineer-- and not extremely nice.
And the house the two brothers grew up in. I bet they had fun sledding down that front yard hill in the winter in Ontario.

I wonder who's sitting in the front yard. When I zoom in, it looks like a priest and three girls and someone else.


This is my birth father, PTJ.

I did a stupid Facebook test to see what I'd look like as a man, and I got this:

I guess I look like my birth father.


A remarkable day.
I was supposed to be gone today, so nothing was on the calendar.
I texted my doc student A to see if she was OK and she said she was in the hospital about to be induced at 40 weeks and 4 days.
I drove right there in time to see the pitocin drip in. I stayed all through the labor, the epidural, and relief of pain, and then it was time to push. I looked in her face as she pushed out a baby--- and held my breath and pushed with her. I heard the baby's first cry before it was even out. I saw it get placed on her belly and then I was asked if I wanted to cut the cord. I did. In two snips. Then I took a picture.
The babe was tucked inside my student's clothes and snuggled there for a while.
Then she was weighed, and then snuggled in for her first meal.
It was a remarkable day. I stayed until 7pm or so... to leave her on her own with a new baby girl.


Today was busy and I did a lot of running around which kept my mind busy. I had a minor surgical procedure this morning which went fine. It was pretty sore afterwards and I didn't want to do much, so decided not to travel to South Carolina to see my cousin graduate from basic training. By the mid-afternoon I was feeling OK enough to so hear a speaker on the history of women in geology. It was really interesting. Then I went to dinner with the speaker and some other folks, and then went to help out with the afterschool program. By the time I got home I was sacked and ready for some TV.


I went to the studio this morning and glazed some pieces in blues and greens.
Then went to school for a noon meeting that got cancelled.
Instead my Department Head came to talk to me.
He said in so many words (so that it was MY idea-- a great leadership trick) to remove the mural.
I did so with great big tears and lots of sobbing.
Came home and got on the couch with Teensie and didn't leave it for many many hours.


Today was interesting. We went to church, came home, worked, and then went to Mom's for dinner. We had just finished this first course when the doorbell rang and it was a homeless man looking for a place to lay his head. I talked to him on the front porch for quite a while and then Dan and I drove him to a place he could stay.


We had dinner tonight at our friend Terri's house. She is a local artist and her house was full of her artwork: sculptures, paintings, collages. She had artfully organized collections of shells and rocks and other found items. It was fun seeing her studio and meeting her cats. Speaking of cats, here's mine chilling on her back in my arms.


Friday. I had a department meeting today.
I also added two people to my mural.
I also went to see the bowls that I'd made for the Empty Bowls project. Dungaree Denim is the glaze name.
This evening Dan and I went to a concert and I knitted during it.