February 2006
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Well, a whiney email from Randy inspired us to update the website. It has been a while since our last newsletter--about four months, in fact, so we'll try to fill you in on the happenings (those not listed on Isaac's web page).

In November, Isaac came to join our family. (Duh.) Additional family news from that month: Kim Ankrom got admitted to vet school at OSU. For those of you not familiar with the process, vet school is in fact much harder to get into than medical school. There are only a few schools in the country and you are pretty much stuck going to the school in your state. Luckily for Kim, OSU happens to have one of the best (even our Michigan vet couldn't help but admit it is excellent). Not only did she get accepted, she got called into the dean's office after her interview to be told she was accepted on the spot! It probably helped that the interviewer had gone to school with one of and taught the other vet that Kim has been working for.

Also in November, Linda got a promotion. This puts her almost as high as it is possible to get on the technical ladder within the DuPont corporation. She'd have to invent something like nylon to get any higher. This also, we think this is correct, puts her as the highest ranked technical woman in the company world-wide. Wendy has to brag a little about her Mom, since those of you who know Linda know she'd never brag about herself. Linda is considered a world-wide expert on polymer extrusion and travels extensively to convey her wisdom to other people in the company. A few years ago, Linda was invited to join the Fellows Forum, being the first person without a PhD to receive this honor. The Fellows are the (men) at DuPont who have invented great things (we note that the inventor of Kevlar is not among them--she being female). They pass along their great knowledge to proteges on their Forum.

Kim Comisar graduated from Purdue in December and accepted a job with Wells Fargo in Chicago. The pay is not too shabby, we might add. Who would've thought that Craig would have hung around in school so long that his baby sister is making more money than he is?

Wendy is GSIing (this is the U of M word for TAing--the graduate student union thinks it sounds more prestigious) this term. Craig's advisor mentioned at the annual group Christmas Party (held in January this year) that he still needed a second GSI for his class. We are required to GSI one term to graduate. Wendy had tried to get this out of the way previously but was thwarted, first because she was on fellowship and second because she was due to have a baby mid-way through the term. Since Prof. Savage is a great guy to work for and the class, reaction engineering, was one of her favorites, Wendy quickly volunteered. As far as GSIs go, it is a fairly easy one, nevertheless, it takes up a lot of time. Three weeks into the term, Wendy decided that Isaac needed to go to day care full-time. She was having to take a lot of work home, which meant she wasn't able to devote her attention to the baby. Her decision was affirmed a few days later by a study she read in a magazine: Moms who work full time and Moms who stay at home were found to have equal levels of bonding with their babies. Moms who work from home had much lower levels of bonding with their babies. Additionally, Isaac loves going to the sitter. He is fascinated with the other kids and they are fascinated with him. Wendy comes at lunch to feed him. One little boy always announces Wendy's arrival by saying "Isaac's lunch."

Today (3/2) Lisa, Isaac's sitter, was sick. Isaac was relegated to spending the day at home first with Mom then with Dad. After two months of the excitement of day care, a day at home is too boring to be tolerated. Isaac spent the day crying. Nothing made him happy--not his exersaucer, not his swing, not nursing, not singing, not his play mat, nothing. Mom came home to find that Craig had loaded Isaac into the stroller for a walk (Craig has never once taken Isaac for a walk without a lot of pleading from Mom) as a final resort to calm him. It worked! After he got home from his walk, Isaac napped a little, then allowed Mom to put him in his crib with his nunu lamb while she ran downstairs to check the answering machine (alas, the messages included one from Lisa who is still sick). We caught him calmly sucking his fist in his crib.

In February, Wendy was awarded a Rackham predoctoral fellowship to pay for her fifth (and hopefully final) year of graduate school. She also celebrated her 27th birthday. Linda and Randy came up (to see Isaac). Wendy wasn't feeling very well, so we decided to postpone our annual birthday dinner at the Ethiopian restaurant, where (since it is Wendy's birthday and this is her favorite part) we always sit at the basket tables and eat off of a communal plate. Instead, we went to the choir cabaret at our synagogue. Craig made his guitar debut singing Eili, Eili by Channah Senech (not sure that is the right spelling). Isaac started "talking" during the song--which garnered more attention than the song, we're afraid. After all his hard work, Craig was out-shown by a really cute baby cooing!

We've decided to try to be more social recently and have enjoyed a lot of great times with friends. Christine, an administrator in the department who lives in Ypsi and has 5 cats, invited us all over for dinner. We had a great time getting to know her and her husband better. Our friends Clare and Rob joined us recently for dinner at our house. Thanks to some allegra, they were able to enjoy their visit nearly sniffle free. Rob is vegan, so finding something to make was a challenge. Craig came through with a chickpea curry (his Indian food is fabulous), cauliflower with cumin, and rothis (bread). Wendy made a coconut milk rice pudding and chai for dessert. Those of you familiar with Indian food know that chai contains lots of milk. Wendy sent Craig over to Decky's house to get some soy milk. We also met our friends Ken and Najda (of Sukkah building fame) for dinner at our favorite Vietnamese restaurant.

We made a weekend visit to Columbus, OH in mid-February. It was our first trip with Isaac in a while. Whew. Not so easy as before. We had to stop three times to feed him on the 3.5 hour trip. Poor Orion had to wait in the cold car each time. Orion was rewarded for his patience, though. Kim's roommate has one of those cat food dishes with a gallon jug of cat food attached. Orion got to spend the weekend eating as much as he could hold! While Orion was eating, we took Isaac to visit Franklin Conservatory. We also met up with Craig's sisters who drove over from Dayton, OH for a few hours to see him.

What an enthusiastic bunch! From left to right: Kim Ankrom, Craig with Isaac, and Kim's man Troy.

Kim, the vet-to-be, is the only one of us brave enough to hold the green bird at the conservatory.

Isaac is fascinated with the conservatory. (To be entirely accurate, this pic is from an earlier visit to our local Matthei conservatory--but hey an Isaac in a bjorn with Craig surrounded by tropical plants looks about the same anywhere.)