23 August 2007

new school year

The orientation week was over Wednesday night, followed on Thursday morning with a faculty-wide, beginning of the school year meeting.

There are a lot of changes occurring on campus, in large part due to the demolition of an old building, the upcoming groundbreaking for a new science and technology center, the purchase of an adjoining 30+ acres that includes a hospital (which will become part of the nursing school), the completion of an $80 million capital campaign, and the plan to build a shopping center on campus with a Fresh Grocer, Starbucks, GameStop, and several other retail spaces. This major campus expansion and development, for a school our size, is a really huge deal and simultaneously exciting and disruptive.

After the faculty meeting that gave an overview of many of these changes, I came home and tried to collapse and get some sleep, though real rest and relaxation isn't in the mix for this weekend.

We've got a number of changes here at home too. We'd planned to enroll Claire in a Kindergarten program at a local Christian school this fall (she turned 5 last week). Yet after some testing, talking to the school's administration, and our own reflection and prayer, we decided to change plans and postpone full-time Kindergarten for a year. But we'd like Claire in some kind of pre-K or part-time Kindergarten program, somewhere, so we'll be meeting with some teachers and directors in the next week to try to make some decisions. This is all a bit last minute, but that's how things go sometimes, I guess.

Laurel is nearing completion of a novel she's been writing, but is also looking for part time work, once Claire is in school. So she's in the midst of job hunting and has already had several interviews. Still, it's not clear what the best sort of work will be, including the best hours and location. So things are up in the air a bit on that front.

For me, classes begin Monday and I still need to complete the syllabus and schedules for my courses, several of which need to meet new requirements suggested by the administration. So, I've got a busy weekend ahead, especially since we're trying to pull off a birthday party for Claire tomorrow with a small group of her friends and I need to swing by Target to buy a new bicycle while the current sale is still on.

I had better return to frosting some animal shaped cookies for the jungle-themed part on Saturday.