Holiday Letter 2008

Hello friends and welcome to the online Holiday Letter.

Let me tell you, it was hard to write this one.  Most of the year is outlined on the blog!
This year was marked by the online courses I took from North Carolina State University.  I took Matter and Interactions for Secondary Teachers, taking the Mechanics course in the spring semester and the Electricity and Magnetism course in the fall.  I learned to program in vpython to create physics simulations, and learned even more about “introductory” physics, gaining an ever-deeper understanding of the subject I have devoted myself to teaching.
I was able to put the course to work for me over the summer, when Greg and I went back to the science camp where we met.  It was my first time back in a couple of years, having worked at the University of Pennsylvania the summer of 2007.  I had a great time, and it was made even more special by the presence of one of my former students, a young man who I had the pleasure of recommending to be one of Pennsylvania’s two delegates to the camp.  I taught programming physics simulations in vpython to a bunch of recent high school graduates, who had a great time.  Several of them are now friends with me on Facebook.
Of course Greg taught kids to build computers (laptops this time) while also teaching about innovation and business, things he has learned while working at the Wharton school of the University of Pennsylvania.
Greg has been kept busy at Wharton, creating videos, websites for surveys and contests and the annual business plan competition.  He has also decided to pursue an MBA finally, and has been studying for the GMAT exam.  He’s registered to take it in January.  I am excited to see where this path takes him, and us.
I was happy to be able to spend time visiting over the summer, and I saw my parents in Buffalo and again in the Adirondacks, where we spent a rainy yet pleasant week.  Since taking the train to Buffalo for Christmas 2007, I have re-discovered how much I enjoy train travel.  Amtrak took me to Buffalo in June, and we’ll use it again this holiday season.  Flying seems like such a hassle, and the train is much more relaxing (despite the length of the trip).
What else happened in 2008?  We started (but did not complete) the redecorating of our guest room, and we hope to complete it soon.  We tried leaf compost as mulch in the garden this year, which worked out pretty well, and we had to get a new refrigerator over the summer.  We enjoyed sharing a CSA vegetable share and a fruit share with friends (and we’re still eating it).

Please keep in touch in 2009 – comment on the blogs, friend us on Facebook, send an e-mail!  And best wishes for 2009!

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