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  • Elijah Ricks

Going Viral

What sticks out the most from this last week for me was what may be the worst cold of my life. Wednesday, I awoke with a bit of a sore throat, but I hardly noticed it for most of the day. That night, though, I could feel it coming on even worse, and my nose started acting up. I slept nary a wink that night, then muscled through my Thursday. I slept a little on Thursday night, and then went back to campus on Friday to support a student of mine who was presenting her honor’s thesis. That afternoon was when I started to finally feel like I might recover. Luckily, I slept reasonably well that night, and I’ve been getting a little better each day since. To our great dismay, Merritt now has it, though he’s been tolerating it far better than I so far.


I also had an unusually busy Tuesday. I teach an advanced forensic psychology course, and I thought I’d try to take a field trip with them by visiting the Metropolitan Correctional Center just a couple of blocks from campus in Chicago. It’s a federal jail, and one of their forensic psychologists is an adjunct professor at our school, so it was a pretty easy setup to take the students. It was a very enlightening experience for them, as none of them had been inside a jail or prison before (I, of course, worked in a few in days past). Still, all but one in that class are women, so they were feeling especially vulnerable, I think, walking among the inmates who were unrestrained. It certainly supplemented the course.


I also had a teaching evaluation on Tuesday, where a tenured professor comes and offers feedback on my style. That was a good day for it, because I had a lot of great participation from students as we were covering a topic that stirs up a lot of discussion (exonerees).


The cold weather and wet ground have made it less enjoyable than one might think. Still, the kids have found things to do, and the boys even turned down an offer to go to the library, so they must have been having a good enough time. 


I spent the first half of Wednesday working from home and then the second half at Costco, stocking up for the month. That took a lot out of me as I was just starting to feel the cold coming on, but it was a good thing to get checked off the list. I also stopped by the hardware store to get some supplies. This week I focused on getting our doors winterized. Our kitchen door that leads to the mudroom has an awful draft of cold air, so I used weatherstripping to get it sealed tight, which, of course, made it harder to close. I then had to adjust where the door clicks shut, but it’s all set now. I also did the front door, and then I finally got around to painting a bedroom upstairs and our upstairs bathroom. Maybe I’ll post photos once I’ve finished with the edges, but the main parts are all double coated and ready to admire!


Another big thing from the week is that we’ve had some snow! We had a couple of storms make their way through the area, leaving just an inch or two at a time. It was enough for Avey to roll a huge ball around the whole house until it was a couple of feet in diameter. It still is not melted in our front yard, but all the rest of the snow has gone for now.


We are celebrating Jesse’s birthday today with a cake and a little remembrance. He would have been 35 today, which is difficult to imagine now that it’s been so long. It’s hard to think what he might be doing in his life now, and it’s even harder to not have him with us.


We’re looking forward to Thanksgiving. I’m so glad to have the whole week off of going to campus, but I still have quite a bit to get done working from home. We’ve got a nice ham all ready to go, as the kids prefer it to turkey (and, frankly, so do I). I’ve been so sick that I’ve not really thought much about other dishes, but I’ll start to put my pie plan together so that we’re good to go. We’ll update you next week on how it all went!

#Happenings #LittleGems

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