Monday, August 24, 2009

Month in review

First week. July was a month of visitations: we had relatives from Brazil and my in-laws in town. As much as I love my family dearly, it was nice to return to the peace and quiet of our everyday lives. The kids get a bit frantic from being off their normal schedule. Now they can settle into a more constant pattern of school days and home days, knowing what to expect.

I had spent the month of July delving into the notebooks of former students, many of which did not even sign their own name on them. I finally got the (published) experiments figured out and troubleshooted by the time August arrived. It was nice to have my new lab finally set up and be able to focus on experiments.

By the end of the week I got notice that we will be moving across the hall in September to make way for the chemical synthesis project that will be going on in our current lab. I also got a letter from the kids daycare saying they will be closing half an hour earlier, starting a week from now. We told the kids they might be changing school, to try to prepare them. We got two different responses: little brother continues to suck his thumb and assumes we know what we are doing, while big brother decides to make our life miserable in the meantime. There will be no peace this month...

Second week. Dada and I spent two mornings researching and visiting daycares that have extended hours. We really liked the accredited center a block from our house, so on the third day we took the kids for a visit. It went well, so I spent Thursday and Friday mornings there too - transitioning the kids to their new environment. They spent the mornings at the new school, then afternoons at the old one. Big brother is still acting up every morning, but once we get him clothed and in the car he behaves. I think he likes the new school, but after being at the same center for 3 years - since he was born! - the unfamiliarity of the new surroundings is a bit overwhelming.

Of course Mamae here is stressed out too, even re-living her own uprootings from way back when - creeping memories, hidden traumas... but I manage to get myself focused enough at work to keep my experiments going and plan out the new lab layout. I will miss having a window, but I will rejoice leaving the monster chemical hood (and all the noise it makes) behind.

Dada spends the weekend cleaning the house for the big party next week and clashing horns with our 3 year-old. From refusing to wear clothes to a hunger strike, we have a weekend as none before. As much as I remove baby brother from the arena, he gets stressed too. Or maybe more teeth are coming in to join the festivities...

Third week. The kids started officially at the new daycare, everybody is much calmer. We feel assured the change was for the better. Now Dada can focus on the grant he is writing and I can try to get as many experiments wrapped up before they start taking my benches apart.

We hosted a "welcome to grad school" party for Dada's department on Saturday. We had ~40 people over: faculty, students, postdocs and significant others. It is odd being binned with the latter when I was so used to being included in the middle two. I also find it amusing that many of our guests assumed that I did most of the prepping, when in fact all I did was buy the beer and make a salad - then spend the afternoon napping with the kids. The only compliments I did not refute were the ones concerning my well behaved kids. They are indeed a pleasure in company...

Fourth week is about to start... It seems like everything is back under control, but maybe it is too early to count victory. My lab move is scheduled for next week (or the following), so I can get a few more experiments done this week. I can also work on the review I should be writing.

Peace & quiet? I will not give up yet...

No comments:

Post a Comment