How to Make Time to Read a Book?

Every night when I go to bed, I really hope to have enough energy to read at least 10 pages of a book. I am currently reading  Foucault's Pendulum by Umberto Eco. It's supposed to be an excellent book, but as usual, I am having lots of trouble reading more than 3-4 pages every night without falling sleep.

 I get up at 5:30 am to do my 30-minute workout in the basement, then I take my shower, and then have to organize breakfast and lunches for our two children. I can't never leave home before 8:50 - 9:00 am. After a full day at work, we still have to organize supper and make certain that our children, especially our 4 years old is sleeping not later than 9:00 pm (which I am certain many parents probably consider very late for a 4-year old kid). Very often, I have to work on lectures for my courses or research projects until 10:30 or 11:00 pm. So, by the time that I am in bed, I only have a few minutes to read. It's a really bit frustrating because over the last months (or even year), I have started several books and have only been able to finish one. It takes too much time to finish reading a book, and I lose interest on the book.

Recently, one of my friends, suggested to get audio version of books. I have tried this and find that it works well for some books/topics, but not for others. I think that for books where details and symbols are important (e.g., Foucault's Pendulum), audiobooks are not a good option. So, unless there are other solutions (suggestions???), finding time to read some pages of the book during the day may be the only solution.

Do kids need to wear shoes?

This morning, my husband and I had an argument regarding kids and shoes.

Our 4 years old son keeps damaging all the shoes that we sent with him to preschool. My argument is that he doesn't really like to wear shoes and when he is at school, he simply doesn't tolerate them. He keeps damaging the back of his shoes because he simply doesn't put his shoes correctly. In fact, I believe that it's the back of the shoes that he dislikes the most. Of course, at his preschool, the teachers don't correct him or even ask him to put his shoes properly, so he keeps doing it all the time. At home, he doesn't wear shoes. He claims that he cannot run properly when he wears the shoes. I think that part of the reason that he has trouble wearing shoes at school is because we don't force him to wear shoes at home (in other words, it's our fault!).

So, I suggested my husband that we should try to be consistent with his preschool, and force my son to wear shoes at home. This way, we can have the chance to correct him when he doesn't put his shoes correctly. Of course, my husband is not happy with this idea. He claims that very few children wear shoes at home. Of course, I am aware that the idea that children should wear shoes at home (or anywhere) is very controversial. Personally, I am not completely in agreement with my own idea, or the need to wear shoes at home because I know that our primate ancestors were adapted to open habitats and had probably flat feet. I also know that more and more studies are showing that barefoot is significantly better for many activities, including walking and running. But, as a mother, I am concerned about the fact that my son has to wear shoes at preschool, and soon elementary school, and he doesn't know (or doesn't want to learn) to do properly.

 Am I overreacting? How can I help my son to wear his shoes properly? Are there shoes that are better suited for him? 

Turning 49 years old

About a month ago, I turned 49 years old. For the first time in my life, I did spend time thinking about my age and the fact that next year, I will be 50 years old or, if you prefer, I'll be half of century old!

It sounds a lot, lot of years when you say 50. But, is this really true? What does age really mean today? I have to say that my view regarding age is obviously influenced by life as a scientist, mother (our children are 4 and 12 years old) and as a biology professor at our local university.

As a biologist and academic, I have the opportunity to interact with many people, especially those who are usually between 20-25 years old.  Although I should always feel old when interacting with them, I have to admit that I sometimes feel younger and more energetic than them. Like most of you, I know other people who are in the 50-70s who are extremely active not only physically speaking (workouts, running, etc), but are also emotionally involved in projects and causes.

So, it's age really important? What does it mean to be 50 years old in the 21st century? What does it mean to be young? or old? Is age a factor? What is your definition of old? What is age correlated with? Do you consider yourself young or old?


I have a blog!

Ok., I finally did it! I have my blog. I'm not certain how easy would be for me to post every day or even every week, but I will certainly try. I feel that I have so many things to say and talk about it, from my childhood to my present life. So, let's see how things go.

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