3 July 2006

A blissfully quiet (but hot) day. Matt got up early enough to go to breakfast with me. I answered a few Computational Freakonomics students' questions at breakfast – part of the interesting part of being in a residential learning community. Matt went back while I did early morning grocery shopping before getting to class.

CS1316 is working on arrays (with sounds) and is moving into JMusic. CompFreak was a fun discussion of Chapter 2 – relating the American Revolution to a terrorist movement, comparing the South in reconstruction to Germany after WW1, and contrasting blogs with the "Superman" radio show. Very neat.

The challenge for today was to find the next book in the "Wayside School" series by Louis Sachar. She finished the second book yesterday on the train, the last that she'd brought with her. I told her to check around Oxford. "They'd never have that here!" she replied. At Oxford University? With Blackwell's down the street? The challenge was to go find it.

They did find that several copies were at the library (!), but all checked out. They did visit Blackwells, but it wasn't there. So, I took them to Borders and Waterstone, where we still couldn't find it (!), so I bought them each new books to read, and then the requisite ice cream for completing the challenge.

We then went to the Pitt Rivers museum (think of a 19th century explorer's attic) and the Oxford University Museum of Natural History. The Pitt was a little disappointing – only the first level is open, due to renovation of the building. But everyone loved the Natural History museum. Jenny used the microscope and pet the stuffed animals (allowed!). Katie was fascinated by the early humans and primates, and we discussed Java Man and Neandrathal's and Homo Erectus for probably half an hour. Matt found several things he thought were really cool.

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Since Mommy really liked yesterday's movie, we made another.

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In the evening, the kids had dinner with the students (Lucky! There were only three spaces empty! We have several meals ready in the fridge and freezer now, if all the students show and we're turned away) and then played soccer, while I went to our faculty meeting. It was fun with lots of jokes and good food, but lots of planning too. The University System of Georgia is sending a delegation on the 11th to visit us – but not to visit classes, and not to talk to students. Just to visit, and have a reception with the provost from 5-6 pm, and then go back to London. Can you spell b-o-o-n-d-o-g-g-l-e?

We skyped with Mommy tonight, and Grandma and Grandpa Guzdial, too. I finally got everyone torn away from their video games late and got them to bed. I did get all the laundry done, and I'm trying to catch up on grading, an IRB protocol I need for a new NSF grant (that I get no money on but I'm doing evaluation – go figger), and processing the reviews for ICER. It's supposed to start raining tomorrow (from a high of 85 today to a high of only 79 tomorrow and 74 Wed.), so having some books and video games that the kids are interested in is a good thing. And I already told the kids that I have to do work tomorrow (Tuesday) afternoon.

For Independence Day, Carole Moore (Director of the Oxford Program) is having everyone to her place for wine and cheese, and then we'll probably all go out to dinner. The College pub is opening early for the World Cup game, and then will have a DJ for a disco. (Katie already asked if she could go :-)