Since so many of the people reading this are friends and family (well really I consider you all my friends and family), I wanted to give an update on how things are going for us. This is personal stuff so if you just read here for my oh-so-brilliant theological/political/foodie commentary, then you prob'ly want to skip this post. :)
The very good news is that me & Maggie's little vacations these last couple weeks were not in vain: John is finished (or at least 95% there) with his first dissertation draft, which he said he can send off to his committee in the coming week. YAY!! Then he will have some time off while they consider revisions, and he plans to spend that time looking very seriously for a job (he was holding off on the job search while writing so as not to split his time). Depending on the number of revised drafts, it could still be a while until it's all done, but at least he's got the first major hurdle overcome, and he's once again available for teaching. This is huge. If ANYBODY knows of jobs teaching philosophy or film or both - at any level - please let us know. John's a great teacher with tons of experience and lots of cool class ideas that go over great with students. He will take adjunct work again for now, but of course we would really love to find something full-time (with benefits!). Location does not matter. He should be officially a PhD before next fall semester, possibly earlier.
Also, while digging through old stuff, he found a paper he wrote that is good enough to polish and send in for publication. So that's also good news!
Anyway I'm getting to the worst part of my semester - the next four weeks will fly by but also be completely FULL. Still, the light at the end of the tunnel is definitely coming into clear view. Every day I make the decision to keep going, but it's not always easy. I don't think I'm taking more than one course next semester either, because it's just been too much with the new-parent demands. At least next sem there's a course on faith & food, so it should be a pleasure rather than a chore.
As for Maggie, she seems to have her first cold, but I'm hoping a few days of normalcy will clear it up. It's not awful (yet). But I have been up with her since about 4 this morning (not the best schedule for a student!). Her plane ride yesterday was terrible, but I think she just feels not herself. We had a really wonderful time in Chicago and Iowa, and it was fun to put the baby cousins all together (and a little scary - there was a lot of curious hitting going on...).
Thanks for your ongoing prayers and support. We can make it! Yes we can (ha ha).
Oh one more thing: does anybody know when it's safe to let Maggie have communion bread? I don't mean theologically appropriate, I mean when it's safe physically. I'm less worried about wine (since it has germ-killing properties and she just has a pinky to suck on), but I know that giving bread to babies too early can mess with their digestive system and/or cause allergies. BTW the places we commune at all use real (leavened) wheat bread. Thanks!
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When I used to do parenting classes as a social worker the rule of thumb was no solids until they have at least four teeth. As an EM I'm more accustomed to seeing children/babies at around 9-12 months begin to take bread, but older for hosts. You may want to give our Rector friend in the Bay Area a call - they've tackled this with two young boys!
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