February 10th, 2005

I do a lot of telling myself that I’m going to do a blog entry before the night is out, and then we put Sophia to bed and the house is quiet and all I want to do is read or sleep. The task seems at that point like an overwhelming effort, and even entries that I half-formed in my mind earlier that all I have to do is type out won’t come with coherence. Consider that fair warning: this entry is likely to ramble and end up nowhere. With luck, however, it will be short.

Today I think I heard a woodpecker up in one of the trees at the front of the house. Is that possible? Are there woodpeckers around here, and if so, do they live here in winter? Tomorrow, if it’s not as terribly cold as it was today, I shall try pick him out with my binoculars. On Tuesday as I pulled up the car into the driveway after writer’s group a huge bird flew into a tree that grows right off our deck just as my lights illuminated the foliage. It was a cloud of spread wings and grey, indistinct and moving fast. I didn’t get a very good look at it, but I thought that most birds slept at night (except for stuff like owls). It was snowing a little at the time, too. I’d be pretty pleased if it were an owl, and if I could get a better look at it sometime. An oddity of living here is the number of birds nests that I see in otherwise bare trees. I guess in more tropical climes, birds pick trees that don’t drop their leaves to nest in, but here, all the trees appear bereft, so they don’t have much in the way of options. So there’s all these tangles of branches and leaves, like clumps of dirt, high up in all these completely naked trees. It can’t offer much shelter and there’s certainly no hiding the nest up there among the straight, empty branches. It actually took me several nest sightings to figure out what they were (yes, I’m slow).

In other news, for those of you who miss my hair updates : my hair is growing back and it looks pretty good. I would still be taking hair pills but they’re a bit expensive to be taking all the time, so I think I’m going to alternate months or something like that. I have to say, though, that my heightened sensitivity to hair loss has not left me. I can always hear and usually feel every time I break a hair. When one of the cats sits too close to my head at night or kneads at my hair while I sleep and I hear that faint elastic snap of one of my hairs breaking I come instantly wide awake.

There are a lot of things that I’ve been thinking about, lately, and a lot of things that I have been working on. I have a request of the readers of this blog. I have been doing some reading in the area of creationism and related studies and I have come across the theory (not widely held) that there’s no such thing as plate tectonics. What I haven’t been able to pinpoint is what the alternate explanation for earthquakes is in the absence of plate tectonics. Does anyone out there know? If you do, please leave a comment explaining, or a link to a URL that explains it or a print reference that can tell me. Thanks.

Soon, soon, soon I want to find the time to write some things about Sophia’s school and the Montessori method. There’s so much that Sophia is doing and learning, and so many interesting things about Montessori education.

And as a last little bit, here’s a brief list of words and phrases that Sophia uses, never failing to surprise me that she knows them and uses them correctly:

  • area
  • what are my choices
  • options
  • best behaviors
  • is this a chapter book
  • instructions
  • agreement
  • emergency
  • amongst the potatoes (from Potter’s Peter Rabbit, a recent favorite)
  • binomial cube, cinnamon grating, cylinder block (these are works at the Montessori school)

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