Saturday, 28 April 2007

music suggestions welcome

I've signed up for a free trial with eMusic, an grown-up online music store. I'm looking for suggestions about what to download with my mass of free tracks this month. Please leave me some ideas!

walk down Sloane Street

On my walk near Sloan Square today I went into Peter Jones, a big department store. In the stairwell there was this light/sculpture. How lovely!

I also saw this cute little shop near King's Road in Chelsea.

I walked from there as far as Hyde Park Corner and sat in the park to read a bit. I'm working on Suite Francais for my book club. Unfortunately I can't go to the meeting this month because of a parents' evening, so I'm not pushing too hard on the book. But I'll give it a good shot.

Thursday, 26 April 2007


My posts seem to have a theme lately.... My life is filled with geeky scientists or mathematicians. Accountants and bankers are our closest friends. Steven Colbert says that "an accountant is a manila envelope, yellowed with age, that fell between the filing cabinet and the wall. Trapped. Alone. Parched." I love accountants, though! Some of my friends area lovely accountants. (I think Colbert was just trying to win the Meta-free-phor-all.)

Tonight's geeky adventure is a science themed drinks evening. Here's one picture from Tuesday when we made G&Ts and drank them by black light. Tonic contains quinine, which flouresces under ultraviolet light. How cool is that? Tonight we will also be playing with liquid nitrogen. Woohoo!

Sunday, 22 April 2007


Here we are spending some quality time together! Ant, Si, and I are all looking at eBay to find Matt a new bike about a week ago.

Ever geekier: Matt took this photo with the webcam in his laptop.

Thursday, 19 April 2007

busy, busy, busy

I am just knocking off for the night after typing up a few more reports. One year group's are due tomorrow but I just can't seem to work any more today. The last week has been incredibly busy. I've just heard today that my first assessment for QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) will be on Monday and Tuesday. The tutor will visit the school for two days to see another colleague and me. He'll go through my portfolio (currently taking up two 3" binders) and observe at least two of my lessons. He'll meet with me, my trainer, and my subject leader. Then he'll tell me all of the things I need to improve on before his next visit later in the year. By the end of the term (July) I will hopefully be fully qualified. That means I'll be able to continue teaching in the UK indefinitely and I'll be paid on the main pay scale (not the unqualified teacher pay scale)! But the hassle it has been! I will likely go to work on Saturday to continue compiling my portfolio and to make sure my marking is up to date.

Here's a photo from when I was walking around Chelsea on my holiday last week. It's really spring here! I have been cycling to work in my shorts. Shocking.

Saturday, 14 April 2007

new relatives!

A Kurt Vonnegut excerpt lends credulity to a website called Lonesome No More. Visit the website and you can get your new middle name and find your new cousins. I am now Sarah Daffodil-14 A. Heehee.

Friday, 13 April 2007

fresh burritos

Here's a link to a long article about the trans-continental burrito tunnel which links New York City to San Francisco. Originally built as a mail tunnel, it went into disuse when planes started taking post from coast to coast. It took decades to find a new lease on life--delivering burritos to New Yorkers using magnetism and gravity. It's a masterful article; consider this sentence: "Convincing skeptical businessmen to buy into the plan proved more of a challenge - it took six months to persuade suspicious taqueria owners to switch to a salsa with lower magnetic permittivity." Intriguing!

Tuesday, 10 April 2007

city walk #47: battersea park

Last week I bought a box of cards called City Walks: London: 50 Adventures on Foot. Each of the cards has a map on one side an notes about where to go and what to see on the other side.

On Thursday I was feeling like getting out of the house so I headed to one walk which is very close to us: Battersea Park. The park has wide walkways and a children's zoo. I saw lots of kids there who rented recumbent bicycles. I stopped to read my book near a huge pool with fountains that switched on occasionally. It was sunny and warm--an unbelievable spring day.

The walk proceeded along the Thames and I passed two bridges: the Albert Bridge and the Battersea Bridge. The Albert Bridge is a pastel structure.

When I reached the Battersea Bridge I caught my bus home again.

Monday, 9 April 2007

happy Easter

I celebrated Easter with Micah and Anna at their church in Cambridge, St Edward King and Martyr. It was a beautiful service with loads of songs, readings, and communion. Micah and Anna were confirmed the previous evening at Ely cathedral, and along with the others confirmed they received their communion first and then the rest of us proceeded.

Thursday, 5 April 2007


While surfing this morning I somehow ended up in a Flickr photo pool called Fashion My Legs dedicated to pictures of girls with tights. Call me strange but I have become an avid tights wearer recently. I have always bought cheap tights (because they're going to run anyway) so I decided to start buying interesting ones. I have a gray pair, a teal footless pair, a pinstripe pair, and a pair with a calf seam. Today I'm wearing my fishnets--they are huge gauge; each diamond shape is as big as a 10p piece (or loonie). They look quite cool with a very conservative outfit of a gray skirt and gray top. and while I was out shopping today I bought a banana yellow pair of footless tights (£1).

Wednesday, 4 April 2007

the gadget of sickies

I finally slept a good sleep last night. I have been sick for more than a week. But at least I have the PVR to keep me company. Our (or perhaps Ant's) personal video recorder is a welcome addition to our entertainment nook. And while sick I've really appreciated the backlog of CSI episodes, films, and Grey's Anatomy. We had a search timer that was taping CSI on any channel or time and the result is 49 episodes to keep me company while I've been lying on the bed bored out of my mind. I had some Jane Austen films waiting as well and watching them has been brilliant. Grey's Anatomy is my new favourite show. It's about a group of surgery interns. In the first episode I watched I laughed and cried in the single hour. Try it out if you like with free episodes to download from channel five.

Sunday, 1 April 2007

hat tip to Si

I have been home from work; Si has been looking for work. We have both been at home surfing the net perhaps more than is advisable. But Si has introduced me to some interesting ideas and sites. (Perhaps not too surprising since he works with the web professionally.) First I got into Google Reader, which keeps track of all your favourite websites or blogs and lets you know when they have been updated. Then I found, a sort of web-digest full of links to other interesting things. Then today, I subscribed to a Google Reader feed bundle that included Kottke, a couple of language blogs (with one I think my Dad would like), a couple of strange economics blogs, and even a design blog, of which I hope Si approves. More fun on the net than ever before!