The story behind the name:

One evening, at the Old Broadway Grill in Fargo, North Dakota, my brother caught the end of a Mountain Dew commercial. In the commercial, a Mountain Dew drinker was riding a shark in the ocean. My brother exclaimed in surprise, not realizing that it was a commercial. When I told him he declared "All I saw was a guy coming out of the shower with a shark." Of course, he meant water, but the idea of showering with sharks has been with me ever since.

Friday, December 19, 2008

World at War Lulling Me to Peace

Today is Friday. Finals were all finished yesterday. Of course, my goal for today was to have everything graded and calculated. This did not happen. I blame the pregnancy. I slept in until 9 a.m., which was awesome. Just me and the dogs in bed (Mark had to go to work... sucker). Then I got up and had the best intentions of getting the house cleaned up and all my grading done. Instead, I wound up watching the last hour of a couple of meh movies, taking a shower, and being basically worthless until almost 1 p.m.

As I was checking my email this morning in a fit of not-grading, I ran across an email that claimed I could prevent some of the worsening heartburn (it gets worse!?!) by keeping my stomach more full. Two things about this bit of information overjoyed me. 1) My heartburn has been bad the past couple of days and I'd like it to go away and 2) I love any advice that tells me I need to eat more often. So, I decided to give it a try. I attempted to eat snacks every two to two and a half hours and... I haven't had to take a Tums all day!! Hurray for no heartburn!!

Anyhoo, for lunch I ate some leftover pad thai from Pei Wei (so yum) and then I followed it with a small bowl of Moose Tracks ice cream. I'm not sure if it was the Thai food or the sugar, but I suddenly became energized. So, while watching Librarian: The Judas Chalice on TiVo, I began to actually accomplish a few house-keeping things. I washed our sheets and some towels, cleaned the kitchen, cleaned up the dining room, swiffer vaced the basement, and made sure the guest bedroom was ready for company.

And waiting for that company is what I'm doing right now. I'm stretched out on the couch with a sleeping Sheltie-Eskimo cross (or Sheltimo, as we like to call Quinn) by my feet while Mark plays Call of Duty: World at War on the PS3. It's pretty grusome on the 42 inch plasma, I have to say. Right now he's trying to storm the last bastion of Nazi power in April of 1945. He thinks this will be the end of the game. People get blown up and everything - you can see the body parts fly... Ooops, he just got killed by a grenade. He hates the grenades. He is also drinking wine out of a water glass, which is hilarious. There he sits, drinking merlot while killing virtual Nazis. I love being a nerd married to a nerd husband. I was trying to convince him earlier to set up the Wii -- it's been far too long since we've Mario-Karted, but he loves Call of Duty so much... and I was baking cookies until half an hour ago, so I let it pass.

So, I'm feeling pretty nice and mellow. My house is clean, I have freshly baked cookies, and a husband nerding out. Pretty soon my BFF Ang will be here with Dan and Isabelle and their black lab Abby. I'm sure this will cause chaos for awhile, so I'm determined to enjoy the peace while it lasts.

And I'll finish grading later.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Cursed Fish

The word cursed in the header of this blog should be pronounced Cur-sed. As in, Cur-sed Ju Ju Fish.

I'm sitting here grading... grading... grading... Grading marathon day. As I sit here grading I can't help but reach for the cur-sed Ju Ju Fish given to me my Ali RappStar. They are addictive little buggers. And I CERTAINLY do NOT need anymore sugar today.

Hmmm... Man, those fish look tasty... I think I will have another...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Not Too Preggers to Sleep on the Floor

So, in theory, spending an entire day in my office with nothing to do but grade is a good idea. I knew I would have few distractions from students today, as it is the Tuesday of finals week and students are slowly trickling off campus as classes are wrapped up, final exams completed, and final projects turned in. Of course, what this means for professors is - GRADING. At least that is what it means for me.

Yesterday I had two finals, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Happily, I am done grading everything but extra credit for those two classes. I have another online final this afternoon and one more online final tomorrow morning. And one last paper due tomorrow evening. My goal is to be all done grading by the end of the day Thursday so that I can go home and stop thinking about this semester. This is my plan. I feel like I'm on track so far, but who's to know how tomorrow and Thursday will go?

I spent this morning being fairly productive. I graded late papers, did some other miscellaneous paper work, and, in the spirit of saving, didn't even go get coffee. Then I had a student come in and then I went to lunch with David and Wes. For a wonder, the food in the cafeteria wasn't too bad today. They even had a very yummy chocolate chip and caramel dessert bar that I enjoyed quite a bit. During lunch, I conveniently forgot that I am attempting to eat less in a sitting because my abdomen is largely filled with baby right now. I have been plagued with heartburn for the past couple of days and I think it's because I'm still eating what used to be a normal portion size. Trust me, there is a point to this little side-trip down "I Overate Lane." The point is this: by the time I got back to my office I was full and SO SLEEPY.

Now, being sleepy after lunch is not a new sensation for me. Afternoons are not my best awake times when I'm NOT pregnant. However, today the sleepiness seemed to be of mammoth proportions. So, I decided to take a nap on the floor of my office. I unrolled the yoga mat that I keep in my office (the mat got quite a bit of actual yoga-use last fall when I was attending free yoga classes every Tuesday and Thursday - less use lately - until today that is). Then I spread my winter coat onto the mat and then I lay down using my purple fleece blanket as a pillow. I wasn't sure how comfortable I would be considering that I am starting to reach the point of awkwardness, but it wasn't too bad. I napped for a half an hour and awoke, while not refreshed, at least able to function again.

After I made sure I didn't have any weird lines across my face from sleeping on the blanket, I got up, collected my various paperwork, pulled on the coat I just napped on, and headed out into the snow to run my few errands. As unpleasant as -2 temp with a -10 windchill can feel, the cold did a nice job of waking me up the rest of the way. Also, I have to admit that campus looks really nice from the skyway that connects Oren to the library while it's snowing outside. OH! Also, the lovely Ali Rapp stopped by with a Xmas card and Ju Ju Fish for me while I was napping. Very nice of her. The sugar in the afternoon is highly appreciated.

After being such a busy and productive professor all day (yes, I do consider the nap productive) I am now contemplating what to do for my next trick (as my mom would say). I'm pretty sure I'm going to get a jump on those final papers. A few of my students (in particularly studious fashion) have turned in their drafts ahead of time. If I get the early ones done today, that means fewer papers for me to grade on Thursday (who said I wasn't any good at math?). I also suspect there may be a little time for playing Scrabble with Angela on Facebook. She should be done teaching in about 20 minutes. Ah, finals week...

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Should've Stayed in Bed

Well, here I am. At school. Sitting in my office.

I'm tired and out of sorts today. I shouldn't be. I slept in until 7:45 this morning (yawning as I type this). Maybe it has to do with all the activity going on in my house lately. Charley and my Dad showed up Saturday morning to start working on the basement. From that point, trips to various home improvement stores aside, Mark, my Dad, and Charley worked non-stop for four days. The good news, of course, is that I have a beautiful new basement. But just because the floor got done, doesn't mean the work is done. Last night Dave, Mark's brother, came over to help us move some of the big furniture back to where it belongs so that I could have some sense of order. We put the couch back in the family room along with my desk. Mark still need to put the trim back on downstairs, so while the new walls and floors are lovely, it still looks a bit unfinished. We also elected to leave the big TV upstairs for now, a fact which I'm sure Dave appreciated.

Despite my convenient pregnancy excuse, which has gotten me out of a multitude of physical labor tasks, I did help some last night. I think that may be the reason my ab muscles are so sore. It's odd. I'm supposed to be exercising, but not in certain ways. So, I don't think my muscles are sore because I did something wrong, I think they are sore because they are all stretched out and have begun to atrophy as a result of lack of activity. And speaking of that, I've been having major cognitive dissonance about my lack of gym attendance over the past... let's just admit it... months. I keep having the best intentions of going, but somehow bedtime rolls around and I drift off to sleep cursing myself for missing another potential day of exercise that (all the pregnancy websites assure me) would greatly help both me and my unborn child.

It's 9:30 a.m. Only 5 and a half more hours until my last scientific and technical speaking class. See, this is why I should have stayed in bed. Yes, I have work to do and papers to grade, but I could do that at home. Instead, I have a bad feeling I'm going to be counting down the hours until my afternoon class all day. Dumb.

Unfortunately, the only thing on my mind at the moment is whether or not I should go get some coffee. And, if I do, should it be caffeinated. While the warm beverage would certainly have a positive psychological effect on my, I think I would feel more alive if I got the caffeinated kind. And... do I get a sugary beverage in light of all the mass quantities of sugar I consumed yesterday (it was our department Xmas party). Sigh. These are the days of my life.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Happiness is a Warm Office

I had a great Thanksgiving weekend. Nothing terribly fascinating. Good food. Family. Great sales on Black Friday. You know, pretty standard.

I had my last speech meet of the semester last night and I have to say with all honesty that I'm glad it is over and done. The past three weeks have been really busy, fun, but busy. The epiphany I had this morning as I was getting ready to leave the house was that I didn't have anything major to get done today. Now, I don't want anyone to think that I don't have any work to do, because I certainly have plenty of that. What I do not have, is a major deadline approaching, a pile of papers to grade, a meeting to attend, or a trip to plan. Instead, I have the current luxury of being able to take a couple of minutes to blog while whittling down my To Do list in a calm and orderly fashion. It's pretty fab.

This weekend Mark starts on the basement remodel with the help of my dad and my father-in-law. They will be arriving with a van-load of stuff on Saturday morning. I'm hoping the van-load contains the crib, daybed, and dresser for the nursery. Yes, we bought a dresser in Fargo over the weekend. It is unfinished, so Mark will have to stain it and it is fabulous. I am really excited to start on the nursery. Right now it's still just a room (with a fabulous paint color) that stores a bunch of random stuff. People keep telling me "Oh, you have lots of time..." Blah blah blah. Yes, I still have almost four months before the baby comes, BUT I also have a life and full time job. It's not like I have four months of nothing to do before the baby comes. Also, I have a shower coming up over Christmas break and it sure would be nice to be able to put everything away somewhere instead of just setting it in the living room (which is where all our new laminate flooring is currently sitting. Ask me if I'm thrilled about that.).

I happen to be wearing a very cute maternity dress today and have gotten several compliments - although I had to drag the compliment from my husband out of him. Somehow, it just doesn't mean as much when you have to ask for it. Anyway, it's really cute. This morning I saw my friend Darcey who told me I look fabulous. (Which I do, today. I wouldn't say I look fabulous everyday, or even most days, but I AM pretty dang cute today). Then she said "Isn't it fun to live in a different body?" Hmm. Not really. I'm not that big yet... Not big enough for it to really hamper my life much, but it is a bit hard to adjust to getting bigger when we live in a society that is perpetually telling us how important it is for us to be smaller. Also, I'm at the cute pregnancy stage right now. I'm guessing I'm going to really HATE being in a different body in another three months.

Anyway, my space heater is making me nice and toasty in my cute dress and I'm sad to have to leave my office chair for class. But I do. Tomorrow I force Ali to help me decorate the outer office for Christmas. But I will be bribing her with muffins, so hopefully she won't complain too much. Perhaps I will document our decorating and post the pics on this blog. We shall have to wait and see.