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Sunday, February 19, 2012

St. Johns's Episcopal, Williamstown, MA

How ironic that my most valued heirlooms are those of my Auntie Nanny, much of which is vintage St. John knits. Classic 1980s.  This is where I was baptized, confirmed and married -- many sacraments from my God Mother -- what a role model The Reverend Susan Crampton (since about 1980). 

Today my Dear friend Rachel is coming this afternoon to stay overnight, and we are making French Macaron's (or trying anyway). I just have to get this grading done (and I won't and I'll feel obligated to do a few hours more until it is done enough to visit).... sigh. I have to learn to be satisfied with *NOT* rewriting every students' papers (which I view as pre-dissertation plans, and have to assure myself primarily that the research question is sound, the methodology makes sense and is going to provide some sort of interesting and useful results). But I cannot let shoddy work sully the degree to which they aspire. I continue to be amazed at the quality and interest level of MANY too many of them percentage wise (honestly about 65%).  They feel entitled to an A with little to no serious thought, let alone a little mind stretching and self-reflection over a reasonable period of time (MAKE time for it if you want to be doing it, stop rushing) instead of simple drivel, and make it clear to me that it is *my* fault for their lack of understanding when I recommend that they  might benefit from some cooperation from the writing center (suggestions about how to make research more robust is not a personal attack). Just because you can pay for it does not mean you earned it. I was appalled to find that 60% of those who attend even one Residency (one week learning seminar in a conference setting) do not finish their degrees. Maybe I should just be a dissertation advisor -- it is much more rewarding working with highly motivated students. 

Honorary degrees, on the other hand, are very meaningful. Funny how on Sundays (all days now, really) my little consistent rituals are what get me through each day. Ironing my scarves, using special meaningful items daily. Like Gwendolyn sitting on my lap blanketed feet (with a hot water bottle in the small of my back in my chair though my morning tea made several hours ago, is icy cold. I did manage a lovely lightly toasted and heavily buttered english muffin, though, and an pleasantly comfortable.

Over a 24 hour period Cannon made his very first attempt at preparing and serving a meal all himself: two self-chosen teacher-approved Venezuelan dishes for which he has to produce an edited 2 minute video for Spanish class. Amazingly delicious and Isobel only found one small chicken bone. He was very proud of himself, though it took me a total of 3 hours to put the kitchen to rights. Baby steps! I am proud of him.


  1. My dear sweet friend. I read your postings and am so very proud of you. Stay strong. Know you are loved. Xox

    1. Thank you have no idea how much your beautiful portraits motivate me.... they are placed so that they are all I see when sitting in bed.

      xoxoxoxo Keep sending me love, feeling pretty down at the moment. Preparing Easter basket goodies and hunts -- this will be the last one I do with both kids at home.... makes me feel quite blue.....