All purple. Today I spent nursing a migraine that developed last night from crying so much at the funeral of a young man we watched grow up. When I could, I worked on putting things back in my office- books mostly, and my computer set up. Paintings will have to be hung in 2008. See if you can find my grandkitty Maya in each photo!

This year has been full of joy, pain, adventure, and exhilaration.

Looking back, I see how much I've accomplished in 2007 and how blessed I am to have a most loving family, how blessed we all are to have health and happiness.

In the words of Murph, the lead guitarist of a late '70s rock band named Arrow, "Life is Purple!"


The two Ds stopped by again tonight and one of them snapped this picture of Squirt. I think it's so beautiful. My happy smiling boy- such a joy to me.

Last night my daughters got to work and cleaned out my entire office. Here's a picture of it today all prepped for painting. Purple office, here I come.

Several hours later, PURPLE!


Frisbee misses Kate and Jess. Today I found him snuggled up in the bed they occupied while here. He dug himself down into the sheets...

Today I got the bright idea to pay my daughters to paint my office. We'll see if they're up to the challenge. They would have to move ALL my stuff out, wash walls, patch holes, tape, paint, clean up and move stuff back. I think they want the money badly enough.


I tried to work some today, but my office is a mess and it's hard to focus. I managed to work some on my dissertation and some on a paper Ian and I are presenting at a conference in a couple weeks. I want my room CLEAN, ORGANIZED, and painted PURPLE!


Everybody left today and I was sad. I took a nap and felt really lonely, missing everyone. This picture is of a bulb I planted last year. My college roommate Michele gave it to me when we saw each other in October of 2006. It bloomed at Christmas. Red. Tall. Can't think of the name of it. After Christmas, I put in the basement and let it dry out. I took it out a couple days ago and watered it well. Today I noticed it starting to grow green again. Full circle, this year has been.

Squirt had his 6-month follow-up appointment today with his back surgeon. He has been given clearance to do anything. Run, play lacrosse, play tennis, even snowboard-- as long as he doesn't do anything stupid. It's scary but I'm glad he's fully healed. He can even touch his toes!


More family arrived today! Dad and J and little sister S arrived, and so did Aza's Jacob. We ate all day long. S and I did the Diet Coke and Mentos demonstration for the family. I'm the one who ended up with a migraine this evening. I treated it with a Maxalt and an icepack on my head. J wrapped me up to look like a desert wanderer. I tried to sing Christmas carols in Arabic, but it didn't work.


Christmas morning found Kate in bed with a migraine. She slept it off partway, then we opened presents. I got a cool Ikea chair, the Big Love DVD collection (2nd season), an Italian red leather purse, a scarf, a cookbook, a comic book, a gift certificate to JJill, and a photo of me with my sisters. Dinner was a turkey, mashed potatoes, and roasted greenbeans. We also made two pies: pumpkin and cranberry tart. Kate ate in bed with an aching head.


Christmas Eve. We went downtown (that's Kate shopping for maternity clothes), out to Monticello, and over to see the Lawn. A lovely day of touring about.


The house is filling up. The two Ds stopped by this evening to see Squirt, who was with Kels. Mom and I had a nice visit with them. D is getting his hair cut tomorrow, so I photographed him before his Peter Frampton locks get cut off. Kate and Jess arrived in the evening and fell in love with Frisbee. Being 3 months pregnant, Kate has that maternal bug. The last picture is the typical female familial huddle of chimpish cuddling and hair playing.


This morning Aza, Jes and I went to the reunion party at VS. I saw so many of my former students and had a good time browsing through the school I taught and lived at for so many years. My old room looked the same. Here's a photo of the mural I did with sixth graders who are now in college. My mother arrived in the afternoon, Aza and Jes went to work, Dan and I went to his company Christmas party, and I ended up with a migraine. Came home and crawled into bed. Jes and Squirt had a nice dinner with their Nana.


Today Jes went out and bought us a Christmas tree. She and Aza decorated it in the evening, dancing to the Nutcracker, as is their custom.



Jes came by for some supper tonight after babysitting a little girl in the neighborhood. She was looking for something to do to make money so I asked if she would shampoo the carpet in the basement. She said yes! Here she is hard at work. What a relief.


Aza is helping me teach this week. Getting her feet wet- either that, or scaring her away from middle school teaching forever! It's nice to have her with me at school. I like the company and the help.


It was supposed to snow today. You can see that it was a bright sunny day instead. This evening, with Aza home and Squirt doing French homework on my computer, I caught Dan and the two kids working on laptops on the couch together. Funny sight! Squirt is wearing a Santa hat. He has his French final exam tomorrow.


Today I was worried about being headachy, and thought about staying home, but I'd signed up to work on a Habitat for Humanity house. I went anyway. Dan and I worked from 9-3 on these two houses. He did a lot of flooring while I caulked and painted. It ended up being a fun time!


Developed a migraine overnight. Woke up early and took a Maxalt and managed to go to school. They are really stripping the land next to the school- it's depressing. I looked at the package of manacotti and saw that it contained romano cheese. The combo of dehydration and aged cheese probably caused the migraine. Meanwhile, Aza came home this evening from school. It's good to have here home. Very good.


I went to the new ACAC gym downtown on the way home from work today. It was a really nice gym, but I didn't bring a water bottle, and I got dehydrated. After dinner I started developing a headache. Dinner, I thought was fine- manocotti. Went to sleep with a growing headache.


Last night I set up the equipment for splitting water into hydrogen gas and oxygen gas. I let it run all night long and this morning I had a whole test tube of hydrogen and a half test tube of oxygen. I ignited both for my students and we all thought it was really cool.


Today I mailed Christmas packages at the post office on the Downtown Mall. There's a Free Speech wall, and I liked this prophesy I read.


Today, Monday, I begin to see the end of teaching middle school in sight. Here is a picture of the algae colonies we are growing- it will be oddly enough, sad to part with them. I hope to bequeath them to the life sciences teacher. Sky looks snowy. I stayed up late tonight wrapping Christmas gifts.


Today I graded papers, graded journals, and got ready for a new week. This week I will not tolerate sassing, talking in class while I'm talking, and disrespectful behaviors of any kind. I have one month left to learn how to take charge and I'd better get going.


I went on a rampage Saturday, cleaning out bathroom closets, throwing away old bottles of expired medicines and vitamins and lotions. I even organized our growning collection of single socks and found only 5 pairs. Note to my daughters: If you have any single socks, bring them home for Christmas. I'd bet your mates are here in the purple bag waiting for you.


There used to be a woods next to the school. But this week I watched a bulldozer push the trees down morning and afternoon. Today they were burning. It's sad to see development in this rural part of the county. Today was one of the worst days teaching I've had yet. I tried giving my science students a work day and it failed miserably. I brought blondies for the kids who'd behaved all week. Half. Only half.


It snowed this morning but not enough to cancel school. Today, Thursday, is an odd day of the week and usually odd days are rough for me. I stupidly let my first math class go outside to see the snow falling and they came back in with muddy feet which we had to clean up. I had class tonight and served on a discussion panel. Took pictures of grounds on my way to class.


Today was a gray Wednesday. It looks like it's going to snow.