Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Last week was a long week.
I have had some travel this month, 4 days in NC and a day trip up to MA, which has put me at a deficit at work and at home. I have been working on getting caught up at work and still make it home in time to help DW with dinner time and the kids.
At work, we gave our 2nd midterm early in the week. We split out grading between the instructors and I graded the design problems, which ended up being about 15-20 hours of grading.
Additionally, our kids are getting seasonal sickness, resulting in poor sleeping for them (and us too). One night our littlest was up from 3-4AM and our oldest wet the bed. Then the next night, our third had a persistant cough from 2-3AM (bad enough that we almost brought her in, but we ended up controlling it with water and a spoon of honey) and our littlest was wide away at 4AM. It was so nice when he and everyone else slept in until 5 AM this morning.
My DW has been exhausted from the kids being up and the kids being grumpy during the daytime (because they are tired too). To top if off, her temporary crown fell out over the weekend and she had to get in yesterday for the repair.
Also, I applied to two openings for long term military professor positions in the math department and the systems engineering department. I am currently here at West Point for three years, getting a long term position would allow me to stay 6 or more years and I would be able to retire from here. I figured that I was a long shot for either position, but thought that I would make it through the initial screening and be selected to interview. I found out at the end of the week that I did not make it past screening for either position. I got the standard rejection letter and followed up. The search committee chair said that they deliberated on including me, but in the end they thought that my research and experience was too far outside what they were looking for.
While some of those were discouraging, there were some positives last week too. My oldest (7) has been doing gymnastics and had a practice meet on Saturday. I got to go to the meet and watch. She is doing really well at her current gymnastics and is showing some real growth. Out of her group (only 4 of them), she took 1st place on beam and vault, 2nd place on floor and 3rd place on bars. Her favorites are beam and bars (she just had a bad event on the bar, she missed her back hip circle that she has been working on). She did great on the beam, nailing her routine including the handstand.
Another positive thing last week is that our department IM team won our ultimate frisbee playoff games (including the semifinal match against math). We play against the phys ed instructors tomorrow for the whole enchilada. We beat them in the regular season, but they are super-athletic and the game will come down to whether or not our skill and teamwork is enough to overcome their speed and stamina (Most of the phys ed instructors here run a sub 11 min 2 mile run, they are very fit but are not always athletic).
Also, we sponsor 4 freshmen cadets (plebes) and had them over Sunday afternoon. We made a big batch of chili, pasta and cornbread and after lunch they helped the kids carve pumpkins, though the cadets did a lot more carving than the kids did. We had enough pumpkins that they all went back to their barracks with one. We had fun and I think that they did too.
With all else on the plate this week, I probably didn't do a very good job of watching what I put on my plate. A bit too much snacking and some take out pizza. Although my eating was a bit off, I was still about even in terms of weight. Maybe the extra stressed burned off a few of the extra calories? I did manage to get in just over 20 miles running over the week. I am now at 850 miles (as of 29 Oct), so I am on track to meet/exceed my 1,000 mile goal.
While the week was stressful and somewhat discouraging, I am finding that I am not discouraged (just tired!). I don't know where I will end up after this assignment, but I have to believe it will be where I need to be.
Spark on everyone!