Saturday, December 25, 2010

This is Immanuel

On Christmas day, a humble girl
gives birth to hope for all the world,
this is Immanuel.
How awesome and mysterious,
the Lord of heaven draws near to us,
this is Immanuel.

The hands that once split night from day
now feebly clutch a blade of hay,
this is Immanuel.

Majestic king, now small and weak,
the Word of God must learn to speak,
this is Immanuel.

This is our God, seen by our eyes,
the love of the Father made known in Jesus Christ.
This is our God, worthy of praise,
the love of the Father revealed on Christmas day.

The shepherds come and bow to him,
the Lamb who takes away our sin,
this is Immanuel.
For God has entered time and space
to show the world his endless grace,
this is Immanuel.

Immanuel, Immanuel. Our God is with us now.
On Christmas Day
By Matt Osgood
Luke 2:16; Luke 2:7; Isa 7:14; Matt 1:23

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

We Will Rock You!

A Very Disco Christmas to you from the Dancin' Meyer Fam!
(click link to view)

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Weekend Perspective



I never did finish part 2 of "A Mother's Therapy," but I don't need it now because he's back! He had a great semester, and now we are having a great time reuniting.

We brought him home to a festive place ("I'll be home for Christmas," and he was!) - and celebrated with David's wonderful home-made lasagna.

After dinner last night we played a rousing game of Uno while listening to Straight No Chaser's Christmas Album - and laughed our heads off!

This morning it was really cool having all my guys in church with me again - felt complete.

This afternoon Anthony got to hear his brothers give their Christmas piano recital. They both did really well!

And, earlier this week, before all this festivity but in the midst of giving and grading exams, I had opportunity to walk in thick fog - my absolute favorite weather!


Friday, December 17, 2010

The FUN Way Math Should Be Taught

OK, so I was supposed to be working on Christmas cards this morning, but then David sent on this great link that I got hooked on. It is awesome! I think if math were taught this way everyone would like it instead of hating it! Click on the link below the image to find out what I'm talking about. There are 4 video clips - if you only have time for one, I recommend the third one first.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

And The Deep River Ran On

As I Walked Out One Evening

As I walked out one evening,
Walking down Bristol Street,
The crowds upon the pavement
Were fields of harvest wheat.

And down by the brimming river
I heard a lover sing
Under an arch of the railway:
"Love has no ending.

"I'll love you, dear, I'll love you
Till China and Africa meet,
And the river jumps over the mountain
And the salmon sing in the street,

"I'll love you till the ocean
Is folded and hung up to dry
And the seven stars go squawking
Like geese about the sky.

"The years shall run like rabbits,
For in my arms I hold
The Flower of the Ages,
And the first love of the world."

But all the clocks in the city
Began to whirr and chime:
"O let not Time deceive you,
You cannot conquer Time.

"In the burrows of the Nightmare
Where Justice naked is,
Time watches from the shadow
And coughs when you would kiss.

"In headaches and in worry
Vaguely life leaks away,
And Time will have his fancy
To-morrow or to-day.

"Into many a green valley
Drifts the appalling snow;
Time breaks the threaded dances
And the diver's brilliant bow.

"O plunge your hands in water,
Plunge them in up to the wrist;
Stare, stare in the basin
And wonder what you've missed.

"The glacier knocks in the cupboard,
The desert sighs in the bed,
And the crack in the tea-cup opens
A lane to the land of the dead.

"Where the beggars raffle the banknotes
And the Giant is enchanting to Jack,
And the Lily-white Boy is a Roarer,
And Jill goes down on her back.

"O look, look in the mirror,
O look in your distress;
Life remains a blessing
Although you cannot bless.

"O stand, stand at the window
As the tears scald and start;
You shall love your crooked nelghbour
With your crooked heart."

It was late, late in the evening,
The lovers they were gone;
The clocks had ceased their chiming,
And the deep river ran on.

W. H. Auden (1937)

Saturday, December 04, 2010

The Dot and the Line

Enjoy this classic!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

A Few For Now

We just got in from our annual Thanksgiving camping trip to Pismo Beach. We got some great pictures, but they sure don't show how cold it was! After sleeping in a tent I am more thankful than ever for central heat, indoor plumbing, and much else! A few photos for now and then off to bed for me! A real bed! Ahhhhhh!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Only in Mathematics

Only in mathematics was there that sense of moving through another dimension, one that didn't exist in time and place - that feeling of falling into and through a puzzle, of having it surround you in a physical way.
from The Eight by Katherine Neville

Friday, November 19, 2010

Hide and Seek

Here where the dead lie hidden
Too well ever to speak,
Three children unforbidden
Are playing hide-and-seek.

What if for such a hiding
These stones were not designed?
The dead are far from chiding;
The living need not mind.

Too soon the stones that hid them
Anonymously in play
Will earn their names and bid them
Come back and hide to stay.

Robert Francis (b. 1901)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Olber's Paradox

The heavens hold more stars than earth has grains
Of sand, and given time, each tiny sun
Combined should make a world where starlight stains
The sky bright white and dark would be undone.
And yet the night remains. the dim stars gleam
Their separate ways, and constellations drawn
Connect their dots, while under them we dream
And sleep, then wake to such a thing as dawn.
The universe, expanding since its birth,
Is larger, older than its light; sublime,
The force that keeps this constant day from earth
The same that measures out our years -- is time:
The limitation that provides us night
And saves us all from unremitting light.

Robert W. Crawford (2004)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Fall and Night Fall

It's finally fall in California (though you wouldn't have known it by the warm temps today!)

"Fossils" of a fall long ago!

Fall and summer fighting for dominance:

A certain slant of light . . .

Sunset through my home-office window . . .

. . . and nightfall:

Thursday, November 11, 2010

At Arlington

Two dates carved in stone above his grave
tell us he was seventeen, not how
this soldier died, nor whether he was brave
or terrified, or both. No matter now:
the only life he had to give, he gave.

Wiley Clements 2004

Random Act of Culture

YouTube link:

Saturday, November 06, 2010

In This Short Life

In this short Life
That only lasts an hour
How much -- how little -- is
Within our power

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

Wednesday, November 03, 2010


But was I the first martyr, who
Gave up no more than life, while you,
Already free among the dead,
Your rags stripped off, your fetters shed,
Surrendered what all other men
Irrevocably keep, and when
Your battered ship at anchor lay
Seemingly safe in the dark bay
No ripple stirs, obediently
Put out a second time to sea
Well knowing that your death (in vain
Died once) must all be died again?

C. S. Lewis (1898-1963)

Tuesday, November 02, 2010


On facebook I can post a status - in some sense that's what this post is - and the status is good!

I had such a busy day I didn't notice the date (Nov. 2) until now. It is 3 years since David's stroke. Whew! It seems both longer ago and shorter ago. Though things are still not as they were before that, we are thankful for the tremendous healing that has been granted by God's grace!

We are sure in a different spot three years ago today!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

His Kingdom is Forever

I missed singing this today, so am posting it instead:
A mighty fortress is our God, a bulwark never failing;
Our helper He, amid the flood of mortal ills prevailing:
For still our ancient foe doth seek to work us woe;
His craft and power are great, and, armed with cruel hate,
On earth is not his equal.

Did we in our own strength confide, our striving would be losing;
Were not the right Man on our side, the Man of God’s own choosing:
Dost ask who that may be? Christ Jesus, it is He;
Lord Sabaoth, His Name, from age to age the same,
And He must win the battle.

And though this world, with devils filled, should threaten to undo us,
We will not fear, for God hath willed His truth to triumph through us:
The Prince of Darkness grim, we tremble not for him;
His rage we can endure, for lo, his doom is sure,
One little word shall fell him.

That word above all earthly powers, no thanks to them, abideth;
The Spirit and the gifts are ours through Him Who with us sideth:
Let goods and kindred go, this mortal life also;
The body they may kill: God’s truth abideth still,
His kingdom is forever.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Set Daily Puzzle

I just found one of my favorite games online in a solitaire version. The game is Set and is made up of cards having 4 attributes: color, shape, shading and number. There may be 1, 2, or 3 shapes on the card. The shapes may be diamonds, ovals or squiggles. The shading may be solid, lined or open. And the color may be green, red or purple.

The goal is to find sets of three cards that, for each characteristic are all the same or all different. For instance, the column on the left above contains a set because all three cards have the same color but all have a different number of items, a different shading, and a different shape. The second column from the left is not a set because although they all have the same color and the same number, there are two open figures and also two diamonds (not all three the same and not all three different with these last 2 attributes). Remember, for each attribute you must have three matches or three differences. How many sets can you find in this image?

There is a new game posted daily at:
I know I'm going to be checking in on this!

Monday, October 18, 2010

A Bright Light Has Gone Out

A colleague approached me today and asked if I had heard that Mandelbrot had died. Though I only met him once I feel I've lost a friend. Benoit Mandelbrot was a French mathematician who founded the field of fractal geometry - one of my favorite branches of mathematics. The field is innovative, applicable and beautiful. He was often interviewed for science programs, and I am posting a link to a NOVA presentation in which his life and work are explored (click at bottom of post). Even if you are not a math person, this is a presentation I highly recommend. To me he was not just a great mathematician but a great person who got outside the box and looked beyond the received wisdom of his day to bring together something truly ground-breaking that enriches us all.

Click here to view video.

His obituary from the American Mathematical Society can be found at the following link:

Sunday, October 17, 2010


With all the flies in our area this autumn, and David swatting them left and right, I can't stop thinking about poetry involving flies!


As flies to wanton boys are we to th' gods,
They kill us for their sport.

King Lear Act 4, scene 1


Little Fly,
Thy summer's play
My thoughtless hand
Has brush'd away.

Am not I
A fly like thee?
Or art not thou
A man like me?

For I dance
And drink & sing:
Till some blind hand
Shall brush my wing.

If thought is life
And strength & breath
And the want
Of thought is death;

Then am I
A happy fly,
If I live,
Or if I die.

from Songs of Experience 1794

Friday, October 15, 2010

A Bit of Fall Stuff 2010

We've had some crazy weather out here in CA this year - kinda chilly this summer, which bummed me out because it's the first year we've had a pool - and rather hot this fall, now that I don't have time to swim! - but we've had some beautiful skies:
As of this month we've been in our "new" house for a year - really enjoying it and just thinking a lot right now of friends and family who helped us with that move at that very busy time last year!

It's very cozy...
...and very pretty......and our bulbs transplanted from the old house are finally making an initial showing......and our boys, more and more, are growing into young men! (Where's my baby?)
Last week something really amazing happened. People used to talk about "random acts of kindness." I hadn't seen that phrase recently, but I experienced not one but two of them in the same day! I was out for a quick walk - very short and totally on a whim - before going to work, and a woman waiting for her bus to take her to her day school struck up a conversation with me and then handed me a flower and wished me a good day! My whole heart was just smiling all day! (Oh, and her name was "Anjelica" - pronounced the Spanish way - halfway home I realized that's from the same root as "angel." I think she was.)And then I went to teach, and after my Math 10 class - last class of the day - I found two Hershey's Dark candy bars in my bag that a student had dropped in anonymously. Below is what remains. I feel inspired to go out and do random acts of kindness too now!
And I went and got prettied-up today - an unsual event for a tom-boy like me - threading (Ooo...ouch!) and a haircut.
So that's what's going on around here this fall (in my life anyway).