Ever since November 9th, I feel like I have been moving through the world in a kind of fog. For a week, I barely got any work done. Then I had to work triple time to get presentations ready for a work conference while trying (and mostly failing) to help Leah juggle childcare so she could complete her schoolwork too. I have started and deleted a dozen blog posts, because really, most of the things I’ve been feeling about the state of the country and the world have been written about (better) by someone else already. But nothing changes and nothing comes of anything if we don’t engage in our communities, so I’ll try to actually complete and post this one.

First, a brief update on our lives. Darwin is huge. She talks about complex ideas and feelings. She hugs and kisses her sister and is concerned about her whereabouts and activities. If Linnea can’t reach a toy, Darwin will bring her one. If she grabs one of Darwin’s toys, however, we’re starting to get an idea of what the next 18 years will look like… Linnea is also huge – bigger than Darwin was at the same age by a significant weight, and Darwin was no slouch. She is a delightful, smiley baby. Her whole face lights up when she sees me (or moreso when she sees big sister). Everyone tried to warn me that this sibling thing was addictive, and wow, you all are for real.

I made it through my big meeting in November down in Tucson. Fire science is amazing y’all. I presented on two projects and got my first “oh hey, you’re you! I know your work! I’d love to talk!” which was flattering and incredibly helpful because it happened right before my second talk. A talk which I blew out of the water, if I do say so myself. Darwin and my mother came with me and we had a (mostly) good time. Sleep was rough, as Darwin often wouldn’t until 10 or 11 pm after bouncing off the walls and flailing for a good hour or two. But we had a great time seeing the desert, and drove over to Silver City to see friends of my parents who knew me when I was Darwin’s age. The cacti were incredible, and the sunsets breathtaking. Time to plan a road trip (ha!).

Now I just have to kick start my brain into functioning at some level of competency. Anyone else struggling to focus these days??


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