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July 23, 2009 - 9:07pm
A friend from college is spending the year in Rome, on sabbatical with his family, writing two books. Despite the desire to visit them there, to see Rome as no tourist can ever see it, and to introduce my daughter to world travel and the larger world, we did not visit them during the year. This is because the year they chose to spend in Rome was the year that the economy showed difficult times, and we could not, practically speaking, manage to make the trip.
July 23, 2009 - 5:22am
Summer is when we expose our kids (particularly our city kids) to nature, gardening and camping gear. My teenagers already get “environmental” assignments during the school year, but when summer comes, they get to live them out. Those “green” talks from Mom or those tests at school are set aside for combating slugs on our backyard lettuce or tasting the differences between faucet water in Chicago and northern Wisconsin.
July 22, 2009 - 10:46pm
Thanks to all who entered my big funky "Southern Illinois Rocks" raffle. Congratulations to winners Satch, Hoa, Stacey, Sue, Eva, Denise, Erin, Karissa, Jennifer, and Eric! Enjoy your prizes, which are, as they say, in the mail. (Sue, yours will be on the slow boat to Australia, I'm afraid.) This was fun, let's do it again sometime, on another regional theme or some other topic. If anybody's got ideas, I'm open.
July 22, 2009 - 9:31pm
With enrollment through the roof, any fallow space on campus is at a premium. Suddenly, spaces that have been kept open 'just in case' of future expansion is on the table. And long-standing historical gentlemen's agreements about who controls what are abruptly up for grabs. Through trial and error, I'm slowly discovering a method for handling these.
July 22, 2009 - 7:29pm
Based on the expertise inherent in my observation of Portland over a 3-day period (and most of that confined to a convention center), I can confidently state that there are three broad groups (NB - not "classes", lmao) of people in Portland. First, there are tourists. Not just SCUPers, and not just conference attendees in general. Lots of folks, all over town (or at least the portions readily accessible via public transit), all consulting fan-fold maps and looking just a tad confused.
July 22, 2009 - 4:53pm
OK, the main conference sessions are over, there are some local tours going on this afternoon. A few thoughts on the last sessions and speakers.
July 22, 2009 - 8:21am
I found the recent Wall Street Journal article about family-work balance blogs surprising. After all, in my own family my husband and I frequently check in with one another and analyze how we’re both feeling about the family-work juggle. We’re both guilty of being pretty intent on our navels much of the time. But we find that we haven’t just made static choices about how to divide our work and family lives.
July 21, 2009 - 10:01pm
Sometimes, there are no words.
July 21, 2009 - 8:44pm
As at all conventions, this one has a vendor showcase area. They call it the Idea Marketplace, although I always thought of the marketplace of ideas as more a metaphor than a specific location. The exhibitors are the usual suspects -- architects, engineers, campus planning consultants, furniture and equipment vendors. As I observed at last year's conference, it's enough to convince a person that "college and university planning" is limited largely to campus planning. From SCUP's mission statement, however, it's clear that that's not the case.
July 21, 2009 - 6:53pm
Only one session this afternoon -- it was scheduled long and ran even longer. The presenter was John Tagg, an emeritus at Palomar College, and the announced topic was "Framing Change in Higher Education -- Why is it so difficult? How can we make it easier?"Well, doing sustainability work on campus is all about framing change. Or rather, it's about achieving change, and it's hard to do that successfully without framing the change you hope to accomplish. Or maybe the issue you hope to address, even if the outcome has to be left pretty flexible at first.

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