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We survived the first complete week of school. The baby is finally feeling better and loves his Monday night babysitter. I have worked out my place in my new unit. Theseus received a job inquiry from a firehouse near our school. T came to visit for the weekend. I've lost 8 lbs since the New Year. The Patriots are going to the Super Bowl.

I have found my happy place. :)

- Antiope

The spring semester started last Friday. Cue the panic attacks.

Looking ahead at all the work I need to do between now and May... I just want to cry. Six classes is too much, on top of working full time (with no concrete hours) and caring for a 10-month old. The worst thing, though, is that I didn't really have a choice. In order to get into Drexel's biological sciences program this fall, I had to have a heavy load this semester. If I didn't (and tried to spread out the classes), I would set myself a whole year behind, as they only accept applicants for the program for the fall. So then the employment/school situation wouldn't line up: instead of going to school full time during the day in the fall, I'd have to find another job and wouldn't be able to rely on the GI Bill for financial help because I wouldn't be in school full time. Does that make your head hurt? Because mine hurts from typing it.

Theseus keeps telling me that we have to work hard and be kind of miserable now so we don't have to be miserable for our whole lives. That's not so comforting when you are staring crushing misery in the face.


- Antiope

but then my internet browser reloaded itself and I lost everything I had typed. Gahhhhh!!!!

The short version:

- school starts in two days
- I am taking six classes this semester
- we finally found a babysitter for Austin for Monday nights when we both have class
- work is going great
- I made a friend on Freecycle who gave me a bunch of 18 month boy clothes and a baby gate
- we are signing Austin up for swim lessons (more like water familiarization)
- he has three bottom teeth and two top teeth
- Theseus has been sick for the last two weeks :(
- while sick, he managed to perfect homemade sweet potato fries
- I love seltzer water
- our seeds arrived and we are about a week away from starting them

Sorry that is unorganized and brief, but I'm frustrated that my long awesome post got deleted and can't bring myself to retype the whole thing.

Check out today's photo!

Ok bed.

- Antiope

So - I've been trolling through the internet, checking out other people who are taking 366 days of photos like I am. And you know? I'm doing a pretty lame job. Granted, I am not a professional photographer, but I'd say I'm not exactly an amateur either. I can do better than what I've been putting up. 

Oh and my accessories came in today: a 57'' tripod, a little spider tripod and a monopod. I used the tripod for today's photo; having something to stabilize the camera allows you to take photos in low light without having to use the flash. My D200 has a flash attached to it, but it's not very good. I mean, it's ok, it does its job - kind of like stock car speakers. They work fine unless you want to get crazy. Ideally I'd like to get a Speedlight (my camera is compatible with external flashes), but then I'll still have to reteach myself how to use it. All of the photos in my photo blog have been taken without a flash, except for the faucet. Using a flash is introducing a whole other art form that I'm not very good at.

But anyway, blah blah camera stuff, right? The point is: I have been putting up bland photos and I know I can do better.

Ok, Patriots game. More tomorrow.

- Antiope

The wind today was incredible! I heard it trying to tear the roof off while we were in the attic, and later it howled down the chimney and startled the cats. It was too windy to go outside and work on the yard (I think the wind would have sliced my face off) so Theseus and I stayed inside and puttered around the house.

We lowered the platform on the baby's crib and I washed all his bedding in both of his beds. Then we sorted all his toys and packed up the ones he won't be able to use for awhile - up in the attic they went. We also put all the boxes of clothes he's outgrown up there, too (don't look at me like that!).

Once we got rolling, made a good dent in the storage area that used to be our spare bedroom. You can see the bed again! Apologies to anyone who has had the misfortune of sleeping in there. It's almost habitable again. Sorry! I want to eventually get some stuff up on the walls and some curtains on the windows. You know. Make it look like it's a part of the house.

So now we have a mountain of stuff to take to Goodwill. It makes me happy to clear out all the junk we don't need anymore... I just have a hard time getting started sometimes; I get overwhelmed easily. And if Theseus isn't also in the mood to clean - forget it. There is nothing as demotivating as a husband with his butt parked on the couch.

Oh! While you're here: check out today's photo! Don't forget, you can click the photo to see a larger size.

That's it. Good night!

- Antiope

I started this post, then saved it as a draft... came back to it, added some, saved it again... came back a day later, deleted some, got distracted... here I am four days later. I have nothing of value to add at this point and I lost my train of thought so here is my crappy, disjointed post. I just want it to go away. :(

1. A friend shared two very cool links today on Facebook, so I thought I would pass them along: Academic Earth offers free online college courses - entire classes! - in the form of video presentations. You won't get credit for watching the courses obviously, but you can use them to supplement classes you are already taking or to increase your understanding of topics you are having trouble with. The other site, Khan Academy, also offers free online courses but is geared toward K-12.

Short post tonight because I'm fading...

Today's photo is posted. I had planned on getting up early for the meteor shower but didn't make it outside for a photo (sorry, Meg). But I did experiment with sky photos before we went to bed last night, so maybe one night that isn't too cold I'll go out and try to get a cool shot.

And a bonus for tonight: guess who also started a blog? Go give him some comment love! :)

- Antiope

It all blew away.

So this afternoon Theseus and I bundled up and went out again, collecting all the cardboard and stacking it behind the house. We'll have to wait to spread it out until we get all the hay delivered, I guess. We called a guy that is offering mulch hay for $1/bale; hopefully he'll give us a call back tomorrow and let us know if he will deliver.

I also ordered all the seeds today. We are using two different companies this year: Victory Seeds, which supplied all our seeds last year, and Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds, which is a little more expensive but offered a few varieties we wanted that were sold out of Victory. Now that we have a year of serious gardening under our belts, we were able to select seeds with a bit more knowledge for the coming spring. As a result, we scaled back the different types of vegetables and focused on variety of the ones we had success with. Our potatoes, which we haven't ordered yet, will again come from Wood Prairie Farm, an organic family farm in Bridgewater, Maine. Always happy to do business with New Englanders! :)

After dinner (salad and a cup of hot soup) we gave the baby a bath - he's so funny in the tub. My grandmother bought him a little whale that floats in the bath and shoots water through its spout. He loves it! I can't wait for him to get a little older so he can spend more time playing in the water. I always loved baths when I was young. After he was rinsed off, I lotioned him up and Theseus put him down for bed. He's such an agreeable little guy.

So now we've settled into the couch by the fire. I'm so glad we got the chimney inspected/repaired this year - having a fire in the evenings is the best!! I've also attracted a lonely cat who has made himself at home in my lap. Not a bad night.


Today's photo is up!

- Antiope

It is January and we are running out of time. :(

Today we braved a chilly wind and moved more of the leaf pile(s!) from the front yard to the giant leaf pile in the back. I hate to keep whining about the raking, but we have a TON of leaves on our property. It's absurd. Theseus made a sled for the leaves out of a tarp and a random wooden pole he found in the basement, so we raked the smaller leaf piles onto the tarp and then dragged it into the back yard to add to the big pile. Sounds pretty easy, but it's actually kind of exhausting. We did that until lunch time and then came inside to eat and warm our faces.

After lunch and after the baby went down for another nap, we headed back outside and took out the tractor, Bess. She's seen some better days, but she still has a couple years left in her, I think. Anyway, we forked compost from last year's leaf pile into the trailer and hauled it to the main garden for spreading. Once that was done, Theseus sliced up some cardboard boxes and I spread it over the compost. We had a heck of a time combating weeds last season; hopefully the cardboard will at least slow them down. Before we went inside, our faces freezing, Theseus hosed down the cardboard so it doesn't blow away.

We've been inside for over an hour now and I still can't feel my nose!


Today's photo is up. :)

- Antiope