Wednesday, August 29, 2007


School starts in exactly one week, and I've spent this week trying to get prepared (when not in meetings). I have a classroom, and due to a mix-up, it actually has windows! Next upgrade would be to a corner room (yes, windows on 2 walls!) but that will be a while I think.

A question that I've been thinking about after being in the school building for a couple days, is who ever decided to have RECTANGULAR metal plates hold CYLINDRICAL rolls of toilet paper in the bathroom? Maybe it's the math teacher in me, but the shapes just don't match! This means the roll won't spin... am I the only one who has been frustrated by these?

Well, back to attempting to write a class syllabus and plan some lessons that will engage all of my students (this will be easier, I hope, once I have met them!)

Monday, August 13, 2007


Some of you may know this already but I recently accepted a job teaching math at Ballard High School in Seattle. So, as I sleep in every morning and spend each day doing whatever I want to do, I am now aware that in two weeks this will all change drastically. In fact, for the first time in 3 years, I will be receiving a real paycheck and will be accountable for everything that goes along with that. Also, for the first time in my life, I will be standing in front of 30 high school students at once and hoping to build relationships with them and help them discover all that I love about math. It's scary.

At UVTI, the program where I received my teaching certificate, they advised us to not accept the first job offer we receive unless it is our dream job. Now I have accepted my first job offer and I don't know it is my dream job. What I do know is that I liked the teachers and principal who interviewed me, and they thought I was a good match for the position. There's something to be said for that, right? I also know that I'll be teaching some math classes in the biotechnology academy - a program for kids who want to have careers in science, and I think I could have something to contribute there!

I don't know exactly what to do in the next two weeks to prepare myself for this job. I don't think I ever can be fully prepared. I suppose that keeping an open mind and getting familiar with the curriculum is the best I can do at this point. And at the same time, I'll make the most of my free time that is soon to disappear.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Surprise Lake

Last weekend I went on a backpacking trip to Surprise Lake, one of many lakes in the aptly named "Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area" of the Cascades. Although every lake is a surprise when you reach it after a few miles of hiking through forest, this was the one to get named "Surprise Lake."

Other highlights of the trip:
good company


swimming in the clear water

peaceful sunset

hiking to Glacier Lake on the second day

The only bad part of the trip was the bugs - mosquitos and blackflies were so ferocious that I spent over 50% of the time looking very stylish in a "head net" to keep the bugs away. It worked though. I have bites on my neck and ankles but none on my face!


One thing I absolutely love about Seattle is outdoor summer concerts and the people watching that ensues. Specifically, I love to watch the dancers! Today was a great example - I made good use of my free time by going downtown to the "out to lunch" concert series where a country band called Jo Miller and Her Burly Roughnecks was playing. Never mind that I felt out of place among all the career professionals who were there on their lunch breaks! As I was sitting on a ledge eating a gluten free scone (thanks to Flying Apron Bakery) a man caught my eye. Maybe it was the bright purple satiny shirt and skirt he was wearing, maybe it was his unkempt beard, but he was fascinating. The most interesting thing was his dancing... swaying from side to side as he walked, waving around two large bandanas, not in time to the music but he was definitely in a zone. It reminded me a lot of one year at Bumbershoot (outdoor music festival at Seattle Center every Labor Day weekend) when Adam and I befriended a similar type of dancer. This dancer was in a zone also, but had quite a bit more rhythm - perhaps due to the large can of beer he was drinking? After impressing us with his single-handed-can-crushing ability, he recommended a performer to us that turned out to be one of our favorites of the day!

This being said, I'll put out a toast to all the dancers out there - traditional and not-so-traditional. And for anyone who is in Seattle or plans on visiting, ever, try to check out Bumbershoot over Labor Day weekend, Folklife over Memorial Day weekend, or any outdoor summer concert (you can find one almost every day I think). I guarantee you won't be disappointed!

A late addition: Here is a picture of the dancer from a later concert - apparently he is a regular.

Monday, July 23, 2007


Adam and I spent three days, three nights in Vegas last week with his family. We stayed at a Hilton - it was no Venetian, but was on the strip and as long as we didn't mind walking through 110 degree desert heat we could easily get to the casinos and resorts. A couple highlights...

the Trojan Horse at Caesar's Palace

inside the Venetian



New York New York

I think my favorite part was Cirque de Soleil, which I don't have any pictures of. We saw "Love" which is coreographed to Beatles music - it was fantastic!

As far as gambling, I liked video poker (thanks for the advice Mike Diehl) but I liked craps and blackjack even more. I even think I came out $5 or $10 ahead in the end! I think I'll end, though, by agreeing with Mike Diehl when he said that he won't be in any hurry to go back, except as a stopover to someplace else. Next time I see a pyramid of Egypt or a canal of Venice, I hope it will be the real thing.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

A Seattle-ite once again

After almost two weeks of driving across the country, I am finally back in Seattle. Unfortunately the heat wave followed us and it is now in the 90's here, but without the humidity from back east. Fortunately, being unemployed gives me plenty of time for swimming, biking, and laying out in the sun. If only unemployment came with benefits I'd be all set! (Yes, I am looking for jobs right now.)

Here's a fun photo from our trip across the country. Only in the midwest! And now a challenge for all of you Rodmans... Can you determine the town and state where this was taken? I'm waiting for your answers!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

a new blogger

Well, I looked at Amanda's blog, and then Pennoch's, Rob's, Sarah's, and Diehl's, and I want to try too! Dial-up in Vermont is SLOW, though, so it will probably be a couple weeks before I do any posts with images. Then Adam and I will be driving out to Seattle, so I'll have lots to write about that trip!