Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Crickets, Frozen Graduates, and A Christmas Surprise

So the past week has been an interesting one on many levels. So much has been happening, and most of it doesn't even have to do with the upcoming Christmas holiday. Here's a quick general recap of recent events.

DS has the past three months been participating in a 6 weekend workshop put on by the computer science department of the local university. He has had an absolute blast with this workshop. First, they used a program called "Alice" to learn to do 3D animation. Then they used Legos and a robotics kit, called the "Cricket," to program their creations to do a whole host of different things. He has been quite amused by telling people that he now owns a cricket....only to then tell them after their stunned looks that it is not an insect but a Lego robotics kit. His most recent creation plays "Jingle Bells" and rings an actual bell at the end of the song. Very cool!

DH on Sunday graduated with his master's degree in electrical engineering. I'm so proud of him! He graduated with his bachelor's degree in computer & electrical engineering way back in 1997, so it only took him another 11 years to get here but he made it! The graduation ceremony was on campus at 2:30pm on Sunday. Normally they have the graduates all march around the campus, around the engineering fountain, and then into the Hall of Music (where the graduation takes place). Sunday was different. With the air temperature hovering at around 5 degrees and a strong wind creating a windchill of -20 (yes, that's negative 20!) degrees, they marched those graduates, clinging desperately to their mortarboard hats, directly from the armory across the parking lot and into the Hall of Music as quickly as possible. Those were some frozen graduates!

Today the kids and I were doing a lot to prepare for Christmas. We made & they decorated 2 dozen sugar cookies. We baked a birthday cake for Jesus. I made 2 batches of chocolate fudge. Then we needed to clean up the area in front of the fireplace in order to hang the stockings. Now if you recall, this summer we did a major overhaul on the flooring in parts of our house. This caused many things to get moved about into places where they don't belong. Unfortunately, since this project lasted past the start of the school year, many things did not return to where they belonged until today. So the kids, DH, and I all pitched in and cleared out this area so "the stockings could be hung by the chimney with care." Now I don't know about all of you, but I have learned over the years with my kids (especially with my elder child) to never really be surprised by what I might find when cleaning......whether it be what I find in the laundry, hiding under beds, or, as tonight, hiding in piles of things needing to be put away. The strangest object found this evening? A microscope slide labeled "blood"----containing who's blood you might ask?----my dad's. Who does it belong to? DS----the child who does not deal well with blood, shots, needles, etc. Like I said, you learned to just never really be surprised at what you might find around here any more.

1 comment:

Mindy said...

thanks for the cricket shout out! :)