Friday, April 27, 2007

It's just that time of semester

Everyone is on the verge of a meltdown. I have more things due next week than I really care to think about and I'll probably spend most of this weekend working on them. I'd like to actually complete all course requirements this year and just be done! Graduation is in two weeks, and though I still have a teeny bit of work to do before I officially get my diploma, I'm so close I can taste it!

Also fun is that this summer is shaping up to be filled with traveling and visitors. My parents are coming for graduation, then I'm going to Reno for my brother's graduation shortly after that, then we have a possible trip to Northern Nevada with Peter's family, then Peter's family is coming here, then we go to ALASKA!!! Very exciting. We haven't traveled very much at all in the past few years, and we (I) have missed it. Be sure, I will be taking a LOT of pictures (especially in Alaska), and hopefully I will get some of them posted here.

It's very hard to write a 10 page paper on hereditary neurological deafness when I can daydream about all our fun trips!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Super busy weekend

Remember how weekends are supposed to be the time you get to relax and unwind from the stress of the week? Yeah, me neither. Today, when I was eating my lunch at 4 PM at work, my boss said, "Hey, you do know it's Sunday, right?" Yeah, I'd almost forgotten :-)

Yesterday was Earth Day, so this being Boulder, we expected it to be a city-wide holiday. Sadly, we quickly realized that in Boulder, they must subscribe to the "Every day is Earth Day" philosophy. In Reno (not the hippy-est town), Earth Day was huge, with GIANT tents with dozens of cool vendors, live music and everything to make a good festival. And it's not that Boulder can't throw a good fete. In May or June, Boulder's Creek Festival is amazing, with more vendors than Reno's Earth Day and lots and lots of activities. So with these facts in mind, we set out Saturday morning to the farmer's market, which is right next to where most Boulder festivals take place. Last week, there was a big "save the planet" rally there, so naturally we expected something this weekend (the actual weekend of Earth Day).

Last weekend:

Hug your mother:This weekend:

Crickets chirp...

So while we bought some lovely fresh food at the farmer's market, we had no Earth Day. Since this is practically Peter's favorite holiday, we tracked down the "main" action. It was at NCAR, which we'd often heard about and could see up on the hill from town, but had never been to. All I knew was that it was designed by I.M. Pei, which makes it important. While the Earth Day stuff was a bust (I think we were the only people there without kids and it showed, though the exhibits were cool if you DID have kids), the going-there was great. The view is incredible and the location can't be beat. There are beautiful trails all around that are more easily accessible than some of our other favorites. We will definitely be bringing visitors there now, especially if they like science, since they have some great weather exhibits in the public lobby.

"Fly fishing" under the Flatirons:

After that, we accidentally found out about "Astronomy Day" at the CU Planetarium. I'd been in there for a lab once, but Peter had never been there. We were in for a cool experience.

The planetarium had just recently acquired a "Science on a Sphere" exhibit, of which there are apparently only two in the world right now. It's basically a huge floating spherical screen that has four projectors projecting images of planets, moons, and pretty much anything else onto it. The system makes the images rotate, which makes the sphere look like it's rotating itself. It's incredibly beautiful and amazing to see the individual craters on the face of one of Jupiter's moons so clearly. Here's a video that sort of shows it, but it is much, much cooler in person. If you get the chance to see one of these, definitely do.

Sunday was even busier for me, but it was mostly work stuff. We did get to see our friend Kris perform in one of her clarinet recitals for her PhD in music, which was incredible. If you are a music buff on a budget near a university, try to find out when recitals are. The talent was incredible, it was totally free and I think things like this happen all the time.

Hope everyone else had a nice weekend!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Spring snow tomorrow?

That's what the forecasters are saying. Apparently, we could get up to a foot of snow by tomorrow evening, which makes me sad. All the flowers and trees are blooming, unaware that their effort will shortly be buried under snow. I guess I can't blame them, as the early bloomers tried last week and got snowed on, then frozen under sleet. As soon as the weather cleared and the temperatures warmed again, anything that hadn't bloomed before furiously worked on the task. So now the campus is filled with flowers of all kinds and I feel compelled to photograph them all. I love taking flower macros, and now that we've been here long enough to experience all the seasons, I've learned that I really have to seize the day, for they may not be here tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


Kurt Vonnegut has passed away. The world has lost someone very unique and our culture has lost an important voice. I am very sad. I've read and loved many, many of his crazy books. I always thought of him as immortal, but at least his words are.

Monday, April 09, 2007


Yay!!!!! At long last, we are taking our belated honeymoon! When we were planning our wedding for August of 2005, little did we know that I would be starting my new MA program just a week after our wedding date, several hundred miles away. We picked up the moving van the day after the wedding, so needless to say, our honeymoon had to be delayed.

Fast forward to now, and we are finally taking it! We had talked about Iceland, Costa Rica, Europe and other places as well, but thanks to some free tickets from my wonderful parents, we are going to our 45th state together: Alaska! Neither of us have ever been before, but we've heard such wonderful things about it from friends and family who've been.

Yesterday, we booked all the basic/important stuff. We have the place tickets, the ferry tickets (the Alaska Marine Highway, AKA a ghetto cruise, but actually it's supposed to be way better than a regular cruise and WAY cheaper), and even our car rental. Now I just can't wait for the semester to be over so we can see some gorgeous stuff! I'm planning on taking a TON of pictures and we are figuring out how to rig stuff so that we can upload our pictures to our iPod so we can clear out the memory cards. So exciting!!

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Easter Party 2.0

Today we had our second annual Easter brunch (yes, I'm aware we were a day early, but that's how the fates aligned this year). Last year, we had an easter egg hunt in our living room, a bunch of great people, good food and a ton of fun. Part of me was a little worried this year wouldn't live up to last year's fiesta (it was the only party we had that people still talked about months after the fact). Would people be too busy on Saturday? How could we top last year's egg hunt?

Thankfully, I needn't have worried. We have awesome friends and the weather was extra crappy, so I guess we were the best thing going :-) That, and Peter had plans to expand the hunt considerably. I accidentally bought way more eggs than he had planned (they were on sale!), so we had 103 and a half eggs to hide in our rather small apartment living room. Amazingly, it wasn't that hard at all and we could have hid many more quite easily (next year, Gadget, next year).

Thanks to my sell-out video, I learned how easy and fun stop-motion movies are, so I decided to make this my next project. Want to see how crazy 20 people hunting for 100 eggs in 250 square feet is? Check out the video:

Looks like fun, huh? Join us next year when we hide 200 (or more?) eggs!

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Holy crap!!!

I juts got the email that said I passed my comprehensive exam! I really thought I was going to get called in for oral exams, and I'm not really sure why I didn't, but I'm happy!

Sunday, April 01, 2007


The past few days have been heavenly. I've done pretty much nothing, or only exactly what I want to do. It all ends tomorrow, but I've certainly enjoyed the time I've had. I like working hard, but I also like doing *nothing* really productive when possible (like most people, I'm sure). Today I was thinking about when I was a kid; I couldn't understand the concept of adults liking work. I would hear people talk about feeling productive like it was a good feeling and all I could think about was, "How is this better than playing? If you have the chance to play and choose to 'feel productive,' how is that good or fun or even remotely preferable?" I understand it now, though I'm not sure exactly when that transition took place. I can only "play" for a few days now before I start feeling restless and need to be productive. In fact, many of the things I do for fun are actually productive in some sense (or at least give me the feeling of being productive). I like making movies, taking pictures, writing blogs. Even getting through more of my Netflix queue makes me feel good in that I feel like I've accomplished something by taking three more movies off my list.

Some people lament this change from the days when playing pretend in a field was all we needed to be fulfilled. I think it's just a necessary step for a functioning society. If no one ever derived any satisfaction from a job well done (or even a job simply done), would anything ever get done? And if things did get done, would anyone ever be happy? I think it's good to enjoy doing work, but it's also good to play pretend once in a while.