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My birthday

February 13, 2008

My birthday is coming up in a month. I will be 27. I will get a new license from the state of PA, as mine is expiring. Then I will have had my license for exactly 10 years (yes, in NJ-where I grew up- you don’t get your drivers license until you are 17). I will be another year closer to 30, yet, still younger than the husband. I will still be a daddy’s girl, but now I no longer have my mom to celebrate with.

Of course, this isn’t anything new. I lost my mother 5 months and 1 day ago, (but who’s counting?), but this will be my first birthday without my mom. All the firsts are hard: the first Thanksgiving, first Christmas, first New Years, first day, first week, etc.

This is the first year in my life that I am not looking forward to my birthday. Throughout my life I’ve always gotten super excited about my birthday because it meant presents and fun. This behavior is rooted in my childhood because my mom always made a big deal out of birthdays. She was always excited. She always made a special meal. She always made a great cake. And of course she would also re-tell the story of how happy she was when I was born and how she cried when the doctor told her it was a girl.

For my 26’th birthday I was living with my mom in Florida; I was keeping her company during her chemo and radiation that she was undergoing for an inoperable brain tumor. Even with all that she was going through and dealing with both mentally and physically, she still made a special meal and a great cake for my birthday.

I would give just about anything to be turning 26 again.

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The beginning of the end

February 10, 2008

Tomorrow is the first day of the Spring semester. It’s both exhilarating and terrifying because this quite possibly could be my last semester of school. Ever. I say “quite possibly” because, yes, I do plan on graduating this spring (technically this summer), but there are some things that need to get done first, like my thesis.

This makes me think back to my first semester of graduate school.

  • The day I picked up the keys to my apartment was also the day my mom moved to Florida (and left my dad).
  • I loved my apartment and my newly adopted cat, Stewart.
  • After the first week of classes, I cried to my cat about how I was never going to pass Applied Math. (Thanks to a certain colleague I did pass, although I’m still not exactly sure how).
  • I got to know a lot of the first year grad students and it seemed like Freshman year in college again, except instead of dorm rooms we had offices.
  • I had my first experience with proctoring and I hated it. I still hate it.
  • My schedule consisted primarily of classes – Fundamentals of Real Analysis I, Intro. to Applied Math, and Vector Spaces.
  • I was trying to drop subtle hints to the boyfriend (now the husband) that I wanted to get engaged. Okay, maybe my hints weren’t so much subtle as just downright obtrusive.

Now I’m married, have 3 cats, live in a townhouse, my dad is getting remarried in September, I don’t take classes anymore,  and my days are spent working on my research (which I love) and discussing the latest Britney Spears sagas with my officemate.

This is going to be a very interesting semester.

Math is funny

February 9, 2008

One of the reasons I love mathematics so much is because it always makes me laugh.

When teaching probability the standard examples all involve balls.  There’s nothing quite as funny as standing at the front of a classroom filled with college students saying the word balls over and over again.  And if that isn’t amusing enough, the balls are always colored red and blue.   I laugh even thinking about it.

We also coin some very interesting terms.  For instance, “almost everywhere” is an actual term that is defined and used.  As in, the set X has property P almost everywhere.  Another example is the following title of a paper I just stumbled across, Fuzzy isomorphism and the quotient of fuzzy subpolygroups. 

How is a person supposed to get any serious work done with all these balls and fuzzy isomorphisms almost everywhere!

A moment of silence

February 7, 2008

She hasn’t been herself in a long time.  She can’t perform the same actions she used to, and the things she can do she does slowly.  In the past few days she has been rapidly declining.  I did what I could to help her, and made sure to record her important information.  Last night I gave her one last loving pat before handing her over to the husband to be fixed.  Unfortunately, it was much more serious than either of us realized.

Her hard drive is shot.

Update:  A new hard drive is on the way courtesy of the husband.  Since I’m pretty much addicted to my laptop, the husband brought home a “loaner” hard drive to use until the new one comes.

The vet

February 5, 2008

Today the husband took Zoey and Stewart to the vet today:

  • Zoey has been put on an antidepressant to curb her habit of licking all of the hair off her body. (Yeah, she had OCD). It’s one pill, once a day.
  • Stewart has some nasty teeth and might have gingivitis. This means that once a day he needs to have a wonderful sticky stinky gel rubbed onto his gums. This is in addition to brushing his teeth, which I have never been able to do successfully (or without shedding some of my blood).

Oh yeah, this is going to be fun. Over time and with practice I’ve learned many tricks for caring for and handling out kitties. For those cat owners out there, I’ve found this guide to giving a cat a pill helpful.

The laundry game

February 3, 2008

When the husband and I married, we made an agreement: I would take care of the laundry and he would take care of the trash. Out of the many concerns that ouples have when getting married, this was the only one I cared about. I didn’t care about who would do the cleaning, I didn’t care about who would do the cooking, but goddamnit I did not want to have to deal with taking out the trash.

Back to the laundry. My favorite game with the laundry is to see how long we can go before I have to do laundry (this excludes washing sheets and towels). To aid myself in this game, every holiday I buy the husband new underwear, and what he calls “baby tees” and normal people call undershirts. Since I’m a woman, I have an ample supply of clothing of all sorts (primarily sweat pants and t-shirts, but let’s be honest, the cats don’t care what I wear) and thus, my clothes are not a factor.

The longest I’ve gone without doing laundry is about 3 and a half weeks.

Once, I was thinking that it might be about time to do the laundry. I checked what I would consider to be the laundry barometer, the husband’s underwear drawer – it was empty.

Me: Honey, did you know you’re out of clean underwear?

Him: Yes.

Me: How long have you been out?

Him: Umm . . . I don’t know, a few days?

Me: What have you been doing for clean underwear?

Him: <looking like a child who’s done something wrong> I’ve just been wearing, ah . . . ummm . . .

Me: <sigh>

It was definitely time to do the laundry.

The husband also plays a very similar game with the trash. You ladies might be familiar with this game, the see how long you can go without taking the trash out before your wife threatens divorce game?

I think they like each other

February 1, 2008
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