Archive for the 'Off Topic' category

RIP F.W. Lancaster

Aug 31 2013 Published by under Off Topic

I don't believe I ever met F.W. Lancaster but I so value his work. His books and articles are so practical and useful. Clearly written. They're pretty much timeless, too. For example, his book: Lancaster, F. W. (1993). If you want to evaluate your library (2nd ed.). Champaign, IL: University of Illinois Graduate School of Library and Information Science, is on my bookshelf at work, and I do pull it down from time to time to reference various parts.

There's a blog post from UIUC with his bio.

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Donor's Choose matching funds!

Nov 01 2012 Published by under Off Topic

Give now through the end of the campaign and you can get matching funds for your projects. As you're checking out, enter SCIENCE in the "match or gift code" box. My site is at: or pick any projects from any Scientopian's page!

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Donor's Choose 2012

Oct 22 2012 Published by under Off Topic

I'm a little late so please help me catch up! Donor's Choose is a great charity that collects small donations to put toward teachers' projects. There's accountability for where the money goes and you get to pick the projects. Each year groups of science bloggers have a competition to see who can raise the most.

I've selected a few interesting projects from my home state, so please consider donating to them. See them on the sidebar or go directly to the page at:  Not your cup of tea? Then please donate to another Scientopian's projects (see where we stand on the motherboard).

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OT: Short term outcome of my spring project (TMI)

Mar 30 2012 Published by under Off Topic

If you follow me on twitter, you likely know this already, but I thought I would post some additional information here. This is really TMI if you're just looking for information on library and info science, so you might want to skip this.

My spring project was to give birth to twins, and I did that, but few things go as planned. I was due on 4/12/2012 and I had a pretty uneventful pregnancy up to the very end of February. It was really remarkably uneventful.  Then, all of the sudden, out of nowhere, my blood pressure started to go up quickly. I got put on bedrest at home on 2/29. My blood pressure continued to go up, my extremities got very swollen, I had a big weight gain in a short time, ... and then protein in my urine, my platelets were off, and my liver enzymes were off.... well, for people who have had this, it's pretty clear. I developed pre-eclampsia.

The babies were happy. They weren't at all ready to go anywhere. They passed their biophysical profiles with flying colors. I honestly don't really care about my own health and 2 of the OBs in the practice were of the mind to keep monitoring me to let the pregnancy progress. Yes there is some risk of liver and other damage but it's reversible after delivery.

Then, on Friday March 9, the OB who was on call called me at 9pm to ask me to come in to L&D for monitoring. She was not of the let's watch it mentality, she was of the holy-cow-this-looks-bad mentality. So when she brought me in and they did another blood test, the results were pretty stable (had not really gotten worse from other tests), but she still made the call that I needed to deliver immediately. I was still hoping for a vaginal birth and as of that morning, twin A had been head down so it was possible. B had flipped during the day, and now had his leg between A and the exit, but there was some hope. So they moved me to a delivery room and administered Cervidil - which was completely miserable and absolutely ineffective.

So flash forward past a night of cramps (side effect of the medicine), 3 monitor bands strapped tightly around my belly (they were scratchy and rubbed my tender stretch marks), loud heartbeats (reassuring only for the first 30min and then just obnoxious that the nurse didn't turn the monitor down), and laying in the most uncomfortable position (they couldn't get the monitors to stay on in preferred positions)... The morning ultrasound showed that twin A flipped again and both babies were breech.

So I had a c-section on March 10. Baby A (a girl, 5lb, 18.25") was born at 11:34 and baby B (a boy, 4.1lb, 17") was born between 1 and 10 minutes later, depending on what documentation you look at. They did a spinal block and epidural, and it was all amazingly painless. My husband was there the whole time holding my hand. The biggest deal was trying to get them to give me my glasses so I could see when they did hold the babies up. Well, a bigger deal was how I couldn't have the babies on my chest after birth. In fact, I really didn't get to see much of B  - he was whisked off to the NICU. My husband was able to take some pictures and he was able to hold A and bring her to me and hold her up to my face.

I was then in recovery for a much longer time than typical as they monitored my blood pressure. That's when the whole family descended and my husband took them one at a time to the NICU and by the nursery window. So the whole family saw twin B before I really did. A few hours later they wheeled me through the nicu on the way to the maternal child ward so I could visit him.

By this time I had told everyone who would listen and some people who wouldn't that I intend to breastfeed and I need my babies. Finally in the MCU they brought my girl and I was able to give it a go with her. My husband didn't stay over - no one did - so they had to take her back in the nursery when I was there alone because I couldn't get out of bed. The next day they finally got me up - only around lunch time - and I took a shower and then headed off to the NICU to try to see and hold my son.

Nothing really went as intended. It was miserable with one baby in the NICU and the other in the nursery or my room. Also, I really wasn't up to walking because my feet were total balloons and my sciatic nerve was still hurting. The NICU had very strict rules (of course) but every nurse interpreted them differently. They talked a good game about kangaroo care and bf mothers, but in reality it was very difficult to actually get there to bf and I wasn't allowed to unwrap my baby to put him on my chest or to wake him for breastfeeding. They kept telling me how he might not be able to latch but the boy had no such issues... They insisted on a bottle - they wouldn't use any kind of alternate method except for a feeding tube. I pumped every chance I got so they would at least give that to him.

Anyway, long story short. The girl and I came home on the Wednesday and we went and picked up the boy on Friday. Since then it's been feed, change, sleep... feed, change, sleep. I have short term disability leave until 5/4 and then we'll see what happens next.


Oh, and I guess I'm looking for suggestions about what to call them here on the blog. Janet calls hers sprogs. There is a mini-z... what should I call mine?

And don't worry, this won't become a mommy blog. I'm still me  🙂

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OT: New project for the spring

Oct 22 2011 Published by under Off Topic

I've started on a new project that is consuming a lot of energy (more than the amount available, it sometimes seems), and I've finally decided to announce it here. This is not to excuse the lack of posting, though. I do feel somewhat energized by ASIST and hope to get back on the blogging horse soon.

So here it is: my husband and I are happy to announce that we're expecting twins in the spring (April 12,2012).

These are our first and we're scared to death.  Everything seems to be nominal so...

Anyway, it's been a pleasure to use the resources of the medical institution that is another division of my parent institution. I've been consulting MDConsult and AccessMedicine regularly with all the little things. I think I'm actually scaring the doctors a bit, but it's all good. Now back to your regularly scheduled programming. (congratulations are welcome as long as they don't come with a tummy rub, lol)

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Announcing Christina's LIS Giving, Year 3

Oct 02 2011 Published by under Off Topic

I'm participating in my own little way to support Donors Choose. Donor's Choose is a neat organization that crowdsources helping teachers get classroom equipment that they need to teach their youngsters. You are of course encouraged to support Donors Choose year round, but right now there is a science bloggers challenge. Read more about this on Dr Freeride's blog. You can see who on on Scientopia is participating on our board and how Scientopia is competing with other networks on the overall board.

Most importantly, please consider donating to any of the projects on the site, even if the ones I've picked aren't the ones most interesting to you.

If you are a teacher-librarian in a public school and need classroom equipment/supplies, please consider submitting a project to Donors Choose so we can help you.

Finally, a couple of years ago (or more?) when I was trying to come up with a thank you gift for participants in a research study, I came across Donors Choose gift cards. What a great way to give money to the cause but allow the recipient to pick the projects.

See my projects on my page and the stats in my sidebar over there >

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Christina's LIS Giving 2

Oct 09 2010 Published by under Off Topic

Like last year, the Science Bloggers are getting together for the next month to try to raise money for Donors choose.

Here's the blurb from the site about what Donors Choose is: is an online charity connecting individuals, like you, to classrooms in need. The average public school teacher spends $500 - $700 on classroom supplies out of his/her own pocket, and students still go without critical supplies they need to learn. So this website is great, because teachers can post requests, like microscopes, DNA kits, even field trips to the zoo, and you can help fund them.

Take the time to read about how they follow up and how they make sure the money goes where it's supposed to go. This is a well run charity that can make a difference in classrooms.

If you are a school library media specialist, consider adding a project (by all means let me know so I can add it to my giving page).

You can visit my Science Bloggers for Students Page,, to make a donation.  In my sidebar there's a widget about classroom projects. If none of those projects work for you, please consider projects selected by other Scientopians or really any on the site at all.

Thank you!

p.s. - in a previous project I gave Donors Choose gift certificates as thank yous for participating. I think it worked out nicely so you might consider that!

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Not dead yet...

Sep 23 2010 Published by under Off Topic

Sorry for the complete lack of posting... first I was using all available time to work on the proposal (yes, a good thing) and now I'm just in a funk. I shall return.

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Blog of substance, eh?

Aug 06 2010 Published by under [Etc], Off Topic

I've now gotten tagged twice (at least) for this meme. Bora tagged Byte Size Biology who tagged Mike the Mad Biologist who tagged me and John and then John re-tagged me.

1. Sum up my blogging motivation, philosophy and experience in exactly 10 words.
2. Pass this award on to 10 other blogs.

Librarian, long-time blogger, science fan, into information sharing and collaboration

I'm going to tag the entire Geoblogosphere - you know who you are - and the entire LabSpaces crew. I'm assuming neither will ever see this, so no additional burden 🙂

edit: oh good grief, the title had a typo!

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Michael Pater, Connecticut artist, died today

Jul 25 2010 Published by under Off Topic

He was also my husband's uncle. I only found two of his images online, the remainder are photographs of prints we have on our walls - intentionally poor quality for those. He was a member of the Lyme Art Association, so there may be more information on their site.

 The Courant (Hartford, CT) had this bit about him announcing a showing:

The LAA Elected Artist first studied art in Hanover, Germany, while in the Lysenko refugee camp from 1945 to 1949 with Ivan Kubarsky (Armashevsky), Vasyl Perebyinis, Volodymyr Balas, Anatol Jabonsky and others. In 1949, Pater immigrated to the United States. From 1957 to 1959, he studied art at the American Academy of Art in Chicago. He attended the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, R.I., from 1960 to 1962.

Rest in peace.

Update: I maybe should also mention that he was an engineer before he retired

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