Friday, November 30, 2007

Keeping Warm

A boy and his dog share a blanket by the fire.

40 Pounds Down!

I'm celebrating another milestone in my battle of the bulge.

I've lost 40 pounds over the past year!

Last month, I also crossed the border from obese to overweight.

As slow and stubborn as this process is, it's working. Over time, the calorie deficits add up.

Last week, I decided to wear a sweater with a pair of pants.

I put on my pants. They fell down. I got another pair. They fell down, too. After the third or fourth pair, I thought, "Hmm. I seem to be a size smaller than I was. I guess it's time to go down to the next size."

I excavated my pants cabinet, removing all the pants and shorts in the biggest size. Eventually, I got to the layer with pants that fit my body.

This stack of pants went in a bag to be given away. I'm very happy about this, even though those black jeans were my very favorite pants.

Monday, November 19, 2007

After a hiatus, Malcolm picked up his notebook with his Writing Strands work and started reading. He laughed at his story about the kitten and the ducklings and at his essay about Mr. Lin and his televisions. He decided to finish his essay on Sombrito, which I am sharing with his permission.


Sombrito is my pet poodle, who, being a dog, does not go to school. He lives with me at ***********, Boulder Creek, CA, USA, North America, Earth, the Solar System, the Milky Way, the Universe.

He is 1' 3" tall, the perfect size for a dog. He is large enough to not be in (much) danger of being stepped on, but small enough to not be scary. He weighs 21 pounds, so he still can be picked up easily. Picking him up is the only way to get him to take a bath.

He has light skin, but it's hard to see it. His black fur blocks it. It's so soft, and it's quite curly. It feels nice to pet him.

When he wants something, he looks at you with his sweet brown eyes and wags his tail. But when he defends his bone, those sweet caramel-colored eyes become fierce, and he shows his teeth and growls loudly. When he's hot, thirsty, or exhausted, he sticks out his tongue and pants. His favorite thing to do is to sleep by the fire or in a sunbeam. He's very cute.

The Writing Strands program works pretty well for Malcolm. He's working at level 3, which focuses on helping students organize their thoughts. It guides him through the process of writing an essay by having the student write the answers to a series of questions, then putting together their answers to make an essay.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Overclocking for Slackers

This weekend, I thought about the magic of taking an hour in the spring and moving it to autumn. I've never liked Daylight Savings Time much, but I should probably be grateful that it makes my allergy season one hour shorter.

As I was thinking about this game we play with the clocks, I thought of other ways we could rearrange time to suit ourselves. My favorite idea is Weekend Dark Savings Time.

Here's how it works: Every weekday at 3pm, the clocks would jump ahead to 4pm. This would shorten each workday by an hour. Then, on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday mornings at 2:40 am, the clocks would jump back to 1am. Thus, each weekend night would have an extra 1 hour and 40 minutes for sleep and other leisure activities.

Think I could be elected president on that platform?

Thursday, November 1, 2007

All Hallow's Eve

At our house yesterday, there was a strange poodle.

FuFu did tricks nicely and was quite a hit when we went trick-or-treating.

After trick-or-treating, FuFu joined some friends at the Babylon 5 casino for a quick drink.

Vir, the attache to the Centauri ambassador, and Lennier, who serves the Minbari ambassador, commiserated over the difficulties of their jobs.

There was a purple witch around somewhere, but all we were able to find was Lennier modeling her hat.