17. June 2008 · 4 comments · Categories: Uncategorized · Tags: , , ,

“So, what on earth have you been doing? I haven’t seen a substantial posting in a while!”

Well, now that Timmy is napping and Jacob is in NEW YORK with his grandparents, I have a chance to catch up a little!

On Thursday of last week, Dave’s parents flew into town. Right in the middle of all that smoke mentioned here .

Friday morning was Dave’s dissertation defense at NC State. This is his one-hour-long opportunity to give a summary of his 3-years of research. The general public is invited — well, the general public in this case is anyone who is interested in stratospheric turbulence — and this is the part Dave’s parents and I sat in on.

As is the tradition for a morning defense, we put out a small breakfast spread from our local Panera Bread shop.

Unbeknownst to Dave, I had taken a couple pictures of his presentation. Lots of vertical profiles of the atmosphere. I guess I understood most of it with a little brain effort.

After the presentation, Dave was left to his PhD committee behind closed doors for another 1 1/2 hours or so, and when that was done we received the happy phone call: “I passed!”. Wonderful news!

That afternoon we went to Dave’s office where one of his professors, Dr. Yuter, gave him this clever cake:

The family had a celebration dinner at the Angus Barn Restaurant in Raleigh…a place we’d been trying to visit for some time. It was most wonderful — Dave and I were reminded of one of our favorite restaurants in State College, The Tavern. The menus are a little different, but the atmosphere and the friendly staff brought back many nice memories.

On Saturday, several of our Raleigh friends (and my sister’s family) threw us a delightful going-away picnic. We combined the celebration with one for Dave completing his PhD, so we had invited his NCSU colleagues, too. Several of them paid a visit to the park. We had a great visit with so many of our friends and family…

And here’s the cake I’d made to celebrate:

Several of the families we’d befriended here presented us with a precious photo album that included pictures going back the past 3 years — from the very first playgroups my boys were in when we moved here! It must have taken hours to gather the photos and assemble them for us. I was definitely in tears going down memory lane with my boys and their friends…and my dear friends, too.

Dave’s parents had a nice relaxing rest-of-the-weekend, and on Monday they took Jacob with them back to New York. This coming weekend is Dave’s family reunion in Lancaster County, PA and we’ll pick up Jacob there and have a great weekend at Uncle Jack and Aunt Shirley Henderson’s farm.