Having been on vacation for the past few weeks, I can’t believe that I haven’t written anything new in that time. It’s certainly not for a lack of anything to talk about.
The biggest and most celebratory news is that Heidi’s pregnant! She’s due in December and we’re beyond excited (and petrified) so much of our energy lately has been centered on all the tasks associated with bringing a new being into the world. We’ve been researching childcare options and rearranging our home amidst regular doctor’s appointments and reading up on child-rearing. I think we’re in a space between being overwhelmed while simultaneously knowing we’ll have to figure parts of this out as we go. We try to be pragmatic, but we’re accepting that we have to roll with much of this.
We’ve decided to take a hiatus from music starting in November with the aim to restart in March or April. I know we won’t go at the same pace we’ve been and I think we’re looking forward to time off to work on writing our own music and crafting our sound further during that furlough. Writing songs and exploring more sounds is a path we’d like to follow, given the other big changes happening in our lives, perhaps this will be the perfect time to do it.
I’ve also embarked on a podcast project with a friend. We’re close to finalizing our pre-production work and getting into recording the first few episodes. It’s going to be the traditional podcast accompanied by a YouTube video. I’ll be talking about this much more in the coming weeks. I’ve been neglecting my share of the work these past few weeks, but I’m looking forward to quickly kicking things into gear as I get back into the swing of things.
I’ll be teaching Film Study & Appreciation and First Year Experience this fall at Manchester Community College and Three Rivers Community College, respectively. With everything else changing, I’m taking a fresh approach to these courses and starting from scratch. I want to incorporate a 1,000 point grading scale and I’d like to include more online and interactive components. I’ve been teaching for over 5 years now and though I adjust particular lessons every year, I want to try more new things.
My hours have increased at UConn and I’m going to be shifting my focus from writing to video. I have a few projects with Extension in the works and I recently received interest from the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station to produce videos. Our department also wants to create videos to enhance our weekly feature articles. There’s no shortage of topics or valuable information so all this is sure to keep me quite busy when I return to work next week.
We stayed fairly close to home for vacation. We had plans to travel to Europe, but with the baby on the way we felt better embarking on a less expensive and stressful trip. We went to Pennsylvania to tour the Martin Guitar factory and visit the Weyerbacher Brewery (a personal favorite of mine and quite enjoyable with a designated driver). The Martin Factory happened to be closed during our time out there, but we managed to swing back around at the end of our trip as we spent about a week in NYC afterwards.
NYC was fun and we spent a lot of our time doing a number of things we’ve wanted to do in the city, but somehow hadn’t managed to do or see. Some things worked out better than others:
The GhostBusters firehouse was one of the more hilarious disappointments.
Needless to say, it wasn’t how I envisioned seeing it in the real world, but there’s not much you can do except to follow the words and example of the great Rick Steves to “keep on travelin’!”