Friday, December 26, 2008

Our sixth wedding anniversary

True Love
True love. Is it normal
is it serious, is it practical?
What does the world get from two people
who exist in a world of their own?

Placed on the same pedestal for no good reason,
drawn randomly from millions but convinced
it had to happen this way - in reward for what?
For nothing.
The light descends from nowhere.
Why on these two and not on others?
Doesn't this outrage justice? Yes it does.
Doesn't it disrupt our painstakingly erected principles,
and cast the moral from the peak? Yes on both accounts.

Look at the happy couple.
Couldn't they at least try to hide it,
fake a little depression for their friends' sake?
Listen to them laughing - its an insult.
The language they use - deceptively clear.
And their little celebrations, rituals,
the elaborate mutual routines -
it's obviously a plot behind the human race's back!

It's hard even to guess how far things might go
if people start to follow their example.
What could religion and poetry count on?
What would be remembered? What renounced?
Who'd want to stay within bounds?

True love. Is it really necessary?
Tact and common sense tell us to pass over it in silence,
like a scandal in Life's highest circles.
Perfectly good children are born without its help.
It couldn't populate the planet in a million years,
it comes along so rarely.

Let the people who never find true love
keep saying that there's no such thing.

Their faith will make it easier for them to live and die.
Wislawa Szymborska
I love you baby
Polish version (Polska wersja)

Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas trip delayed



Chicago is covered with snow. We are enjoying our time in Mac and Erin's house in a role of unexpected guests/prisoners of the weather. Last Tuesday we got stuck in a nerve-racking traffic on the way to Chicago's O'Hare airport. We drove in excruciating speed of 2 mph for more than three hours and as a result we missed our flight to Europe:-( Apparently it was the the worst commute in Chicago since Valentine's Day 1991. The next possible flight connection that does not require paying additional three thousand dollars is on Saturday. Thank goodness for great friends and place to stay. And Lucy loves visiting her godparents! As far as she's concern the so far Christmas trip works perfect!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Pierwsza wywiadowka!

W przyszla srode idziemy z Robinem na wywiadowke do zlobka! Pierwsza wywiadowka Lucy. Ciekawe czemu czuje dziwny kamien w brzuchu? Haha w koncu po raz pierwszy to nie ja jestem na goracym stolku! Chociaz z drugiej strony jesli z zachowaniem Lusi mialo by byc cos nie tak to przeciez to nie jej wina. Skad siedemnasto-miesieczny szkrab czerpie wzorce? A ha, no i juz mamy odpowiedz na zrodlo mojego niepokoju. Zachowanie Lusi to troche taka moja cenzurka z bycia rodzicem. Freud sie chowa! (Albo obraca w grobie)
Swoja droga to ciekawi mnie ja ta wywiadowka bedzie wygladac. Przeciez codziennie rozmawiamy z Lucy opiekunkami przy jej dostawie i odbiorze. No nic, nie ma co sie zastanawiac. Przynajmniej mam pewnosc, ze nie dowiem sie o wagarach, ukrywanych ocenach i fauszowanych podpisach :-D
PS. Mam nadzieje, ze rodzice malolata ktore ugryzlo dzis po raz trzeci moje dziecko troche sie nasluchaja!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

CNN Introducing Holographic Interview

Remember the famous scene of Princess Leia's hologram asking Obi-Wan Kenobi for help?
Last night CNN made similar impact bringing CNN's correspondent Jessica Yellin via hologram!
She was recorded in Chicago by 35 high definition cameras pointed around her at different angles to capture the entire body image. The cameras were connected and synchronized thanks to powerful computers with the cameras at the CNN headquarter where Wolf Blitzer has his kingdom. I won't pretend that I understand all the technicality but the effect is awesome! Check out the recording of that oh-so-geeky event:

Ladies & Gentlemen: President Barack Obama




Senator McCain also gave very good and classy speech:

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

GOBAMA!

I don't want to jinx it but looks like we won't have Sarah as a VP! Hip Hip Hooray!
Iowa just closed the polls. I project Obama the winner in IA (Before CNN and MSNBC :-) )

Lucy was voting with her daddy today. First election down, many to go!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Babcia Irenka

Dzisiaj rano zmarla babcia Irenka. Moja babcia.

Przez moja glowe przelatuja obrazy i wspomnienia babci przy Singerowskiej maszynie do szycia, przy kuchni (oh babciu byle nie lane kluski!), na jagodach (zawsze liczyla jagody przy zbieraniu), prowadzaca obladowany pakunkami rower, cerujaca w misterna kratke rajstopy albo dziadka narzute na lozko (narzuta miala wiecej cerowania niz oryginalnego materialu ale babcia uparcie ja ratowala), spiewajaca albo opowiadajaca nam piekne historie, tulaca i kolyszaca mnie przez cale godziny kiedy mialam nocne koszmary... Babcia byla kopalnia piosenek, wierszykow i opowiastek. Jako sierota, wychowala sie u cioci mieszkajacej przy przedszkolu co dalo jej niesamowita wiedze.

Wraz z moim kuzynostwem co roku spedzalismy u babci w Minsku wspaniale wakacje. Babcia wychowana w innych czasach nie obawiala sie nadmiernie o nasze bezpieczenstwo czy higiene, dla niej najwazniesze byly nasze pelne zoladki i szczescie. Buszowalismy wiec smialo po okolicznych laskach i polach, zwiedzalismy na rowerach miasto i okoliczne wioseczki, bawilismy sie godzinami w haldach zoltego piachu przywiezionego specjalnie dla nas na babci podworko przez wujka Nunka. Eela, Maaadzia, Piotrus, Macius, Daaarek!!! Kolaaacja!!! Piekne czasy...

Wszystkie najwazniesze swieta i rodzinne wydarzenia mialy miejsce w Minsku u babci. Chrzty, komunie, gwiazdki, swietowalismy u dziakow. Po smierci dziadka babcia byla glowa naszej rodziny. Strazniczka naszego gniazda. Uparta kobitka chyba przekazala mi w genach troche charakterku ;-) Babciu, gdzie my sie bedziemy teraz spotykac? Kto opowie mojej corce o Dzieciach Pana Majstra? Kto zaspiewa "Hopela, hopela, hopela hop, pan wachmistrz puscil sie w galop... " Oczywiscie, ze postaram sie przekazac twoja spuscizne ale to juz nie to samo....

Tak naprawde babcia poddala sie kilka lat wczesniej. Nalezala do grupy pracoholikow, Syzyfow codziennosci, ktorzy nie potrafia zyc bezczynnie. Dziadek umarl 15 lat temu. Wraz z wiekiem babcia przestala szyc torby (prywatny biznes stworzony wraz z dziadkiem, ktory stanowil zrodlo dobrego utrzymania dla nich, ich dzieci i wnukow przez wiele lat), potem wraz z pogarszajacym sie zdrowiem stracila mozliwosc pracy w ogrodku, i... chyba przestala widziec powod do zycia. Szkoda. Babciu musimy sie uczyc na twoich bledach. Musimy dbac o nasze zdrowie, znalezc sobie wygodne hobby i zabezpieczyc swoja przyszlosc zeby na starosc nie martwic sie o finanse i zawsze miec "pelne rece roboty". W dzisiejszych czasach chyba bedzie nam latwiej.

Oh babciu babciu (dziura w kapciu), pozdrow dziadka i... do zobaczenia

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

ED in '08

Just came back from one of the "Distinguished Lecture Series" at UNI, where former governor of Colorado Roy Romer was making case for stronger education in the US.
Romer is a speaker for Strong American School's ED in '08 Campaign, a nonpartisan campaign promoting sound education policies for all Americans. See the Romer's blog "Roy's blog on schools"

Here are some notes from the presentation:
  • When comparing US elementary students' proficiency in math and language with the other 35 developed countries US in both cases is on the far, lower end of the chart.
  • Lowering the standards to make students successful is not the way to create educated generation
  • A strong America depends on strong schools
  • Aim high, analyze what works in the countries from the top of the chart (Finland, South Korea, Singapore)
  • Let's get our expectations correct - students ARE able to reach higher standards. Did you ever see the teenager playing a video game? The skills and ambitions are there we just need to appeal to them.
  • In South Korea only top 5-7% are in the privileged group that gets admitted to the elementary teachers' college. It is more difficult tho get admitted there than to the law school.
  • In Singapore - students are getting payed regular salary once they are admitted to the College of Education!
  • We could improve our education by increasing the quality of instructions in the schools, and by being more restrictive who gets admitted to the College of Ed.
  • We need to elevate a Profession of Teaching
  • As Educators we have to find in ourselves the way to live on the cutting edge of curiosity.
  • Technology can help us to level between our skills and what is needed to be efficient educator.
  • It is never to late for education. Remember about late bloomers!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

ITEC'08

ITEC conference is over and now I need more time to organize fresh info and play with all the cool apps...

First day was somehow disappointing. Besides the keynotes speaker, Hall Davidson, the presentations were not so good , or I was not able to get in to more interesting ones due to limited space.

Everything was overshadowed by luck of reliable internet access. It was a nightmare for presenters and annoyances for the quite geeky audience. Thank goodness that I had Internet during my entire presentation. I had quite a lot web based examples and all data from my students' survey was on Google docs. Without the Internet it would be a disaster!
The Second day was MUCH better and the Keynote speaker Allan November was just great!

We had set-up UNI IT exhibit booth to advertise our division and new Instructional Technology Facilitator Certificate. Robin set up Twitter account for the ITEC conference. We were projecting the life twitts from conference attendees on the screen in our display wall. It was pretty impressive thing (while internet was working), and I see that people are still using this account today to exchange thoughts .

This is how my presentation was described in the catalog
"Cyber Citizenry - Are you on board? A look at 14-25 year olds’ involvement in cyberspace. Discuss dilemmas of ignoring vs. guiding vs. policing their online presence. Examine challenges and opportunities of Cyber Citizenry. Students are growing up online. It’s your choice to participate in their development!"
Apparently pretty catchy description because I presented to a over-flowing room :-) I had good audience and quite a lot of discussion and exchange of ideas. Thanks to all participants!

On the picture, Rob during his "Using Flock to Streamline Web 2.0" presentation.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Don't Vote?



Watch this brilliant commercial. Hollywood stars like Dustin Hoffman, Lenardo Di Caprio, Forest Whitaker, Jennifer Aniston, Sara Silverman and tone of others are trying to mobilize Americans to register to vote. But not in the typical way... check yourself.

Go to the http://www.declareyourself.com/ for more info and to register if you still didn’t. Do it for me! I can’t vote. I am just a permanent resident with a hope for the great life for my daughter.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Slub Piotra



20 Wrzesnia Piortus, moj wspanialy brat cioteczny, przysiagl wiernosc i oddanie swojej ukochanej Asi.
Gratulacje misiaki!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Rob's Blog


"So, what people need to realize is that innovative technologies like Twitter are really what you make them to be. Imaginative people will always be able to use simple tools to accomplish great things" (Robin Galloway).
I took this sentence from my husband’s blog. I am a big fan of his writing and observations. This is my favorite website to follow new technology trends, his geeky observations and cute postings about our daughter and private life. Everything he is writing is simple yet thoughtful and well researched. No show off, no writing to please the crowd. Just his beautiful mind in action.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Election Fever


Today we saw Joe Biden. He was presenting in the Irish Pub in Waterloo. I really like him. Hi is smart, his is experienced and he has great presence. He looks like old fashion movie star. You may think that it is shallow to judge the person by his or her looks, but I think that presence is important if you are representing the whole nation on the international arena. I am still Hillary’s girl but Biden is right next to her. Honestly, I am a little bias by having a dream of woman president. Biden seems to be more experienced, but Hillary was also around for a long time and knows politics from both: stage and a kitchen side.


Yesterday we went to listen Bill Clinton and I was absolutely impressed by this guy! What a speaker! I wish I had such ability to hypnotize the crowd. I am totally buying this “buy one get one free” idea. Vote for Hillary and you will have perfect first gentlemen!