Weekly Update: 4/29 - 5/5

A little post breakfast flower picking

A little post breakfast flower picking

reflection

Like last week, I was able to get work in on 4 different research projects (that are all at the paper writing stage) this week, even amidst meetings and teaching and emails. I’m waiting on a response to an R+R (for a special issue) that we resubmitted back in December (…I think?!… has it really been that long?!). I checked in earlier this month for an update and they said to send another message at the end of the month if I hadn’t heard. April 30th came and went and still no notification. With lots of other things going on last week, I didn’t want to email, have them respond about another R+R and start the countdown clock on that (and not be able to spend any time on it)… so I’ll check in next week and see what they say. The R+R process has always seemed unnecessarily stressful to me, with arbitrary deadlines and turnaround times that don’t seem to actually account for the realities of academic life. I will say that this current journal has been good in terms of deadlines, which I appreciate, and it hasn’t been a stressful process. I’ve served as a reviewer for another journal a few times that had a 2 week turnaround for reviewers… which is fine if I have nothing else going on, but oftentimes my schedule is booked out that far. Of course, if that’s the case, I’ll just decline, but 2 weeks is pretty tight. I’ve never written anything for them and have wondered what their requirements for authors are - I hope it’s more than 2 weeks!

Anyway… all that to say that writing and editing and reviewing and all the other things that come along with research (and with teaching and with service) all take time, time that the larger structures that govern our work seem to greatly underestimate! I was looking over a few of my recent weekly updates and thinking, “I should step up my game, it doesn’t look like I’m doing that much.” And then my voice of reason stepped in and said, “Seriously?! First, it shouldn’t be about the amount of things you’re doing [and yes I realize that when it comes to tenure it often is about the amount of things you’re doing and I’m trying to stay away from that trap]. And second, all those things that look tiny when you write them out… like create videos for my online class… take a lot of time and energy. Just chill out!”

I had a 12 hour work day this week, which is not something I like to do on the regular, especially when it’s followed up with teaching from 9 to 5. However, it’s the first one I’ve had in, what feels like, a long time, so that’s a win. Mike was commenting on how different each quarter usually feels from his perspective, and that the difference from winter to spring is where he can see the biggest contrast. I’m curious to see how winter quarter feels next year, when I’m only teaching online. Despite ending the work week on a “hectic” (probably too strong of a word) note, the weekend more than made up for it. We had friends over for dinner on Friday night (which didn’t help my sleep goals!), had a leisurely Saturday outside, and then a leisurely Sunday at the park with friends. I’m feeling nice and rejuvenated. Plus, Ellie’s nighttime wake-ups have stopped (knock on wood), another win!

research

Paper 2: My goal for the week was to review 5 articles for the introduction for this paper, summarizing relevant info in my own words (if I just copy/paste what I want to reference it’s a lot more effort when I sit down to write). Goal met? Nope, 3 out of 5 articles done.

Paper 3: My goal for the week was to do some quick analyses for a check-in for this paper. Goal met? Yup… finishing up what I was working on last week.

Paper 5: My goals for the week were to print a draft, summarize the study purpose, outline what’s written already (helps me organize as I frame the intro), create a preliminary outline for what I’ll add, and review recent articles from the target journal to see how they structured their introductions. Goal met? Yes.

Paper 6: My goals for the week were to print the latest draft of this paper, do a quick read through for any final edits (we are getting ready to submit), and return any additional feedback I had to co-authors. Goal met? Yup.

teaching

Course prep (condensed stats course): My goals for the week were to finalize class 3 content, update/print my agenda, grade 9 group assignments and do a few administrative things (e.g., sending emails). Goal met? Yes.

Course prep (online human dev course): My goals for the week were to post an update, transcribe a video, create week 7 videos, update/finalize week 7 content, post assignment 1 feedback, film a video about assignment 1, and double check week 6 content before it goes live. Goal met? Yes to everything except creating a video for assignment 1 and finalizing week 7, there just wasn’t time for it!

Lead instructor: My goal for the week was to compile previous syllabi to share with a new instructor Goal met? Yes.

service + admin

Planning: My goal for the week was to have my weekly list ready to go on Thursday with Monday’s tasks picked out. Goal met? Nope, will have to wait until Monday.

Tech: My goals for the week were to check in with our IT person about my painfully slow computer and to make sure everything is saved where it needs to be before I hand over my computer next week. Goal met? Half, I checked in with our IT person, did not get around to making sure all my stuff is saved… will do that later tonight.

meetings, appointments, + events

✓retirement info session
✓office hours (x2)
✓research check in meeting
✓online office hours
✓lead instructor meeting to discuss my human dev course
✓future of higher ed meeting
✓faculty meeting
✓teaching
✗positive discipline workshop (this was an event hosted by Ellie’s new preschool, I wanted to go but was way too exhausted by the time Saturday rolled around)

personal

Workouts: One lifting session…

Toddler on the Tenure Track: Goal: Get 2 posts up on the blog. Goal met? Yup… got a bunch out this week.

Meditation: Goal: 5 minutes every other day Goal met? No… 2 sessions in this week.

Budget: ✓ got a post up and finalized our April amounts. Still need to set up May’s spreadsheet.

Sleep: Here’s a quick update on my back to basics sleep goals that I started implementing on 5/1.

8 hours of sleep: 4/4 nights (Friday night I was in bed after midnight but did sleep a full 8 hours)

No alarm: 3/4 mornings (the first morning I was woken up by my alarm, every other day I’ve woken up on my own)

Limited screen time before bed: 4/4 (starting out slow, so I’ve only cut myself off 15 minutes before bed time so far, starting with 30 minutes tonight and I’m a little nervous).