September 01, 2005

First Day of School

Posted by Scott at 06:48 AM

School - Yesterday was Claire and Abigail's first day of school. I did the usual picture taking that has become tradition. This is the first year (hopefully of two) that they go to the same school. Whether Claire continues to go to this same building or to the middle school next year depends on how on schedule the construction of the new wing is. If it's on time, she'll spend fifth grade here at the elementary school as well. This year fifth grade is at the middle school.

From all reports the day went well. There was the usual chaos at the school in the morning. The congestion is amplified this year because the construction of the new school wing means the buses must take the path that parents in cars usually use to drop kids off. The school sent a note highly encouraging bus use or car pooling.

I guess there was also some confusion after school getting all the kids on the buses. This delayed their departure by about 45 minutes. The girls didn't get home till around 4PM. They both reported good first days.

Podcasting - My iPod has had new life breathed into it lately. For me, listening to my admittedly modest music collection didn't inspire me to use my iPod all that much. Podcasting has changed that. I was considering putting Sirius satellite radio in my car, but it has been trumped by just listening to "tape delayed" broadcasts. While it's never been difficult to setup, the latest iTunes (version 4.9) has made downloading podcast broadcasts exceedingly easy. Not surprisingly, most of the shows I listen to are of a Catholic or conservative politics nature, but I may branch out soon into other interests — it's only been a couple of weeks for me so far. The thing I enjoy about podcasting is that the shows can be mainstream or niche in their topics. It can be something mainstream like NPR or Rush Limbaugh or something you'd never hear on the radio like listening to the Catholic scriptures of the day or the day's Liturgy of the Hours.

Money - This week has been a time of sacrifices and generosity for Americans. I think within a week we'll see the response that Americans make and be proud. At our household we were a bit conflicted. I'm thankful that our office is doing matching donations for money we contribute to the American Red Cross relief effort. I'm trying to prayerfully discern what amount to give. The devastation is mind numbing! But today we also got a call asking for a donation to the American Breast Cancer Society. Both have high significance to us this month and deserve our stewardship. It just seems to get even more difficult when you see gasoline jump to $3/gallon and know the winter heating fuel will likely follow suit. Thank goodness we're heating the house primarily from wood. How lucky we feel to have installed a second wood stove just last month before the recent oil price explosion. Our main stove really reduced last winter's fuel bills.

Weather - Alas, if there's something small I can be thankful for amidst the horrible tragedy, it's that we got some needed rain to help green things back up. It made things rather gloomy and humid for the past couple of days as the hurricane's leftover moisture pushed it's way northeast. Last night the remnants of the storm moved off our coast. Things look nice for the next several days. Local meteorologist Chris Thomas worded it this way:

The remnants of Katrina, that moved well north of us last night and scraped bands of rain across the state, is now pushing well to the east. Clearing skies and lower humidity will be a refreshing change to the gloomy, humid weather as of late. After a summer-like warm day today and tomorrow, a generally dry, albeit cooler, stretch will last for Saturday, Sunday and Labor Day!

It'll be nice not to need the A/C! One shouldn't need it in September in NH.