I am watching my daughter nap serenely on the baby cam while listening to the plumber bang the pipes in the bathroom. I think he is making as much noise as possible to justify the $700 he is charging us for his workmanship. Merry Christmas, sweetie, hope you like your new waste water overflow.
Despite the horrid plumbing bill (thank you, Bonfe, but next time I will call Stillwater) it is wonderful to be back home. I spent the last two weeks in Oregon and San Francisco, first visiting family, then attending a conference. This was a geology conference, which is really just a codename for "drink fest". Has anyone else heard of a conferece where kegs are wheeled out so that you can drink beer while discussing science at the poster session?
Needless to say, attending said conference with baybee in tow is much different than it has been in past years. I was very lucky to have my Mom attend and play babysitter for a week (thank you, Mom), and felt sympathy for other mothers toting their babies to sessions with them. It's great that women do this, because it is a visual reminder that we need to deal with the issue of women in academia having babies (i.e., it shouldn't be reserved for women that have tenure, because by that point most women's ovaries are more like raisins.) But I was glad I didn't have to be one of them. It also wasn't the 7 day party it has been in the past. I think my liver thanked me for that, though.
On the last afternoon of the conference I gave a talk. I was hoping that my time slot would cause low attendance, but it was actually one of the best attended sessions of the week. I don't think I have ever been so nervous in my life, unless my labor-amnesia has spilled over into my personal life. It went well, but I think it will be a while before I have the ovaries to give another talk at said conference.