The first batch of grading is still underway. I sometimes leave the house to grade, settling in at a coffeeshop, where the distractions don't really involve me. No dogs to let out, no floors to clean, no husbands to chat with. Just (sometimes good, sometimes bad) music and (sometimes good, sometimes bad) papers, a warm drink, and my optimism.
When I began teaching in 2000, I had a really difficult time figuring out how to determine grades. Now I use a 1,000 point scale, and all work has a maximum point value towards that perfect 1,000. I'm a writer, people, not a mathlete! My boss at the time gave me the tiny calculator pictured. I have a cheat sheet on the back that lets me know how many points out of, say, 15, make a "B". I've been using this calculator for almost ten years.
I came home from the coffeeshop on Monday and tore my tote bag and purse apart looking for it. I was nearly brought to tears over its loss. I called the coffeeshop, and what do you know? Two hours after I left there, it was waiting for me on a table. I had to laugh. Here I was, acting like I'd left my laptop or iPhone behind. I couldn't believe someone hadn't seen it and snagged it for themselves! This crummy calculator is just a little swag giveaway my old boss got years ago. But it is orange. It fits perfectly in my hand. It has the cheat sheet. It's the tool I've used to grade almost everything I've graded since that first class.
I'm just a sentimental goofball, I guess. Do you have something like the little orange calculator? Pretty worthless, but devastating if you lost it? Tell me about it, will you?
What girl can't use a cute pair of shoes? Inspired by Sarah's adorable Saartje's Booties in angora, I made these for a new baby girl. The buttons are my favorite part--I totally want to knit a close fitting cardigan and use the same buttons on it.
We've had such a pretty fall weekend here in Connecticut. I hope we have the same weather in Rhinebeck next weekend. Yesterday after I finished up some grading and Neal some renovating, we hopped on our bikes and did a quick 14 miles on our nearby bike path. As much as I feel like I'm in the middle of nowhere in this little town and miss my city life, I am fortunate to have so many great places to play. Neal took Africabike on the path while I rode Trixie Trek, and he fell hard for the fun, fun ride she provides. I think there may be another townie bike in our future.
I'm off to do more grading. I reward myself every few papers and after really painful-to-read papers with a few rows of knitting. Hope your Sunday is restful and rewarding, too!
I'm usually more of a Guinness girl, but I couldn't resist a little something different.
The Clapotis and I had a little bit of a spat. Okay, I got frustrated by knotty yarn and knowing that I could not finish for Rhinebeck unless I gave up, oh, everything else I do day to day. Last weekend I cast on for Dandy using the Green Beer I purchased from Beth at Sugar Spun Yarns. The color had the girls at SnB cooing, and the yarn's springiness has made knitting a pure pleasure. Beth has more of her fabu handspun for sale--she's assured me that the Honey Mustard is from a similar batt and spun just like the Green Beer. I just nabbed a little Candy Corn from her because I discovered over the summer that orange is my new pink.
This weekend I'll be back in the grading frenzy. I have a really nice group of students this year, even if the first paper I read had me shouting to Neal lines that were so fraught with meaninglessness that I had to stop for a few sips of Green Beer to relieve the pressure that threatened to make my brain drain from my ears.
Also? I'm a little worried about the situation with NASA crashing into the moon. I mean, I know they are smart people and all, but I can't help feeling alarmed, like this is going to set off the plot of a bad Sci-Fi novel.
Finally, I'll leave off by saying that I'm thrilled about President Obama winning the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize. The haters may get off on saying that he hasn't done "anything" yet, but I think a reading of the committee's statement makes it clear that the President was an excellent, timely choice for the prize.
Enjoy the weekend! I'm looking forward to plowing through my grading and taking those Green Beer breaks regularly!
Neal and I both like granola, but the brands we prefer are a bit pricey. Enter Mark Bittman's recipe and a trip to the local health food store, and we have a custom, economical version. I left out the coconut as I'm not a fan, and I used pepitas, sunflower seeds, and almonds. Next time I'll put in more dried fruit, and flax seed. It's so yummy over yogurt (next on my list of make-it-myself foods), and really delish with milk and fresh berries. Best of all? I get super happy when I see the two jars up in my new (nearly finished) cabinet.