First storm

The deep roar of the winter wind is audible from inside. Light, sandy snow is falling. The temperature is falling, too. Winter storm warnings have been issued, and people are hunkering down for the first storm of the season. There is some hope that the worst will slide north of us, but even so, it looks that winter is here.

Ken, Dad and Joe have nearly finished digging up the trees. I helped only a little due to teaching and speaking obligations. Although the summer was dry, the trees and shrubs put on good growth. The dirt came off the roots pretty nicely due to the dry conditions.

In class today, I collected the students' papers. Over the noon hour, I read through about half of the first batch. I usually dread reading student papers. This bunch, however, was unusually good. The students took my instructions seriously. They were not just to report on the life of the historical person they were assigned, they were to compare their sources, discover discrepancies, and evaluate the sources for accuracy and bias.

Some of the papers were darn near brilliant! Of course, there were errors in grammar, punctuation and paragraphing. However, I am sometimes relieved when the writing style is clumsy. After all, then you know darn well that the students wrote the paper themselves and didn't just copy out of the encyclopedia.

When grading, I will have to balance my happiness that they seem to have learned something from the exercise with my desire that they know how to write well.

Tonight, I was scheduled to teach a community ed class in Mahnomen. I could have canceled, I suppose. I had one student! But she had a list of questions she wanted answered. By the time I answered them all, the hour was gone. I was glad I went.

Although I am not thrilled with the onset of winter, there is something cozy to sitting inside a warm house listening to the wind roar. It feels like the right time to curl up with a good book.