Friday, August 31, 2007

Pachelbel Cannon Rant

This one comes to you via Steph, who is, of course, cellist!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Pet Peeve of the Moment

If you live in an apartment building.
And you use the community washing machine
DO NOT leave your clothes in the machine for 24+ hours
Thus hogging the machine.
I realize that I could take your wet mildewy clothes out, and maybe even throw them in the dryer for you. But I do not want to touch your wet mildewy underwear.
Thank you!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Welcome Home

He is back.
Safe and sound
And his Mom looks the best she's looked in almost two years!
Happy Day!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Pike's Laws of Adult Learning

Law 1: Adults are babies with big bodies.
It is accepted that babies enjoy learning through experience, because every exploration is a new experience. As children grow, educators traditionally reduce the amount of learning through experience to the point that few courses in secondary and higher education devote significant time to experiential education. It is now recognized that adult learning is enhanced by hands-on experience that involves adults in the learning process. In addition, adults bring a wealth of experience that must be acknowledged and respected.

Law 2: People do not argue with their own data.
Succinctly put, people are more likely to believe something fervently if they arrive at the idea themselves. Thus, when teaching adults, presenting structured activities that generate the students' ideas, concepts, or techniques will facilitate learning more effectively than simply giving adults information to remember.

Law 3: Learning is directly proportional to the amount of fun you are having!
Humor is an important tool for coping with stress and anxiety, and can be effective in promoting a comfortable learning environment. If you are involved in the learning process and understand how it will enable you to do your job or other chosen task better, you can experience the sheer joy of learning.

Law 4: Learning has not taken place until behavior has changed.
It is not what you know, but what you do that counts. The ability to apply new material is a good measure of whether learning has taken place. Experiences that provide an opportunity for successfully practicing a new skill will increase the likelihood of retention and application.

Long Time No Post

Sorry kids - a ton of writing for work, and a glut of personal email, combined with the fact that I'm too busy to do anything interesting has resulted in blog silence. Plus, I'm really unhappy with this last template update and am spending my blog-time looking around for something better. AND it's so nice outside that I'd rather be playing than sitting at a computer thinking of clever things to write.

Here's the quick-n-dirty update (with more to follow!)

* Today is the one year anniversary of moving to my New Apartment! (This calls for a rootbeer float celebration - with homemade ice cream!!)

* I have NEW GLASSES! They're green and a little more fashionable/funky than I would normally go for (but I like them!)

* My little fourth grade orchestra babies are starting college last/this week (which means I need to think of a new name for them, since "The Valley Girls" is no longer appropriate).

* The Phil Glass Violin concerto has been stuck in my head all week (ear worms from minnimilist composers can get a little redundant).

* I attended an interesting workshop on instructional design - 'twas intriguing and I want to learn more.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Songs from Scratch

If you are not already listening to Songs from Scratch, you might want to check it out.

There's something magical about a great song, whether it's Stravinsky or Springsteen. But where do great songs come from? How do they go from words and melodies to something more? To find out, we gave three local bands -- The Owls, The Roe Family Singers, and Matt Wilson -- two weeks to take one set of lyrics and put it to music. Songs From Scratch follows all their scribbling, singing, strumming, and doubting to get a first-hand look at how a song unfolds.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Benefits of Non-Profits

Yesterday at a women's conference, the question was asked: How many of you have donated money to a nonprofit sometime in the last year? About 2/3 of 200 people raised their hands. And how many of you have volunteered for a nonprofit sometime in the last year? About 4/5 raised their hands. And how many of you have been beneficiaries of a nonprofit in the last year? Only eight.

Then it was pointed out that many in the audience have a parent who had been in a nonprofit hospital, had attended a nonprofit music concert, or had a son in a nonprofit soccer league. In addition, many in the group were simply alive because Mothers Against Drunk Driving and Consumers Union have lowered car accident fatalities. Many owe their jobs to prior work done by activists for civil rights and women’s rights. All were breathing cleaner air that day because of environmental activists. When asked again, 100% smilingly raised their hands.
From Board Cafe

Saturday, August 11, 2007

War Letters

This is spiffy - someone is blogging the letters of a World Wwar I soldier, exactly 90 years after they were written. Check out the website!
via Violins and Starships

Wednesday, August 08, 2007


* I have the most beautiful giant spider web outside my window.
The spider who lives there must be a good hider, because I've never seen him.
In the morning the sun shines on the web, and it glistens
(and at night I can barely see it, even though I know it's there

* I'm supposed to teach orienteering to a bunch of Girl Scout leaders this weekend
The good part is that it'll be part of a camping trip (I GET TO GO CAMPING!)
The bad part is that I have not used a compass in a long time (and need to do some serious review/re-learning before I can teach anything).

* Last night, just before I fell asleep, I remembered something wonderful. It made me smile and I was happy that I remembered this memory. EXCEPT this morning, I can not remember what it was that I remembered (or why it made me so happy!)

* People are really bugging me lately. I don't know if I'm just extra-crabby or if people are being extra-annoying.

* I'm taking my parents to the theater next week! We're going to go see 1776. As a kid, my family watched the movie a million times -- and often sang the opening song together. (Yes, we were an odd family, but you probably guessed that already!)

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Science Quiz

Mingle2 Free Online Dating - Science Quiz

Thursday, August 02, 2007

The Day After

It was kind of a weird morning - The Bridge was international news and "Are You OK?" phone calls/emails were pouring in - for me and for everyone else in the area. (It was also an odd morning at work, as we waited for everyone to come in, and tried not to worry about those who were late).

I’ve been over that bridge many many many times – and it’s so close to where I work that everyone has a “what if” story. I know people who were just a few blocks away when it happened, a co-worker drove over the bridge 20 minutes before the collapse, and some friends of mine saw the splash). So many people use that route that almost everyone around here has a “close call” story. I myself was planning to be on it yesterday during rush hour – I was meeting people in a northern suburb and googlemaps told me that was the most direct route from work to meeting was 35W. Luckily a co-worker caught me googlemapping (on a work computer) and decided to pester me about it. In the course of our chat he asked where I was going and how I was getting there. When I showed him the map, he reminded me about the awful construction (and how it is made more awful during rush hour) and suggested I take an alternate route to northern suburbia.

It's impossible to know if I would have been on the 35W bridge when it collapsed into the river - but had he not wandered over to my desk, AND asked where I was going, AND suggested a different route, I would have been in the area somewhere around the time it happened - which is a little freaky. (I’ve been referring to Nick as “The Man Who Might Have Saved My Life!” I’m thinking about recreating that Brady Bunch episode and follow him around being overly-helpful for a couple of days until he goes crazy and I get to save his life in return!)

It's odd to see SO MANY news crews around town. News crews from around the world are here today – I was by the river this afternoon (I had a meeting at the University) and a few of their parking lots have been turned into Media Shanty Towns - - it’s a sea of newsvans, satellites, cameras, and such. There's also quite a few of them around the hospital - - and it's just weird. (Katie Couric, Matt Lauer, etc are ALL RIGHT HERE!)

I feel a little guilty - today I've felt the best that I've felt since Aunt Judy died - I was hungry, and laughed and generally enjoyed myself all day long. It's odd that I should feel good after a tragedy (but I'm going to run with it!)

And now, I'm going for a bicycle ride by the river to see what I can see (this is also known as "gawking")!

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

I'm OK

If you've caught the news recently, you've probably heard about a traffic "incident" in my neck of the woods. I've gotten a few emails and phone calls from people who wanted to check in with me. (This was pretty close to home!) and thought I'd let you all know that I was not on that bridge today (nor was I bicycling by the river) and all is well on Planet Julie.