December 3rd, 2006


Chemistry Magic & Christmas Decorating

Well, with December upon us, I'm am making my place all Christmassy (not necessarily with the help of the kitties). To start the month off properly, I took my chemistry & physics students off to a Michael Faraday-ish Chemistry Demonstration Show on Friday.

Wright State University (my Alma Mater) does an annual Chemistry Demonstration Show (AKA Chemistry Magic Show). It's completely funded by the University now (though they used to have to beg various sources to fund the show) so school's don't pay a dime to attend (other than busing the kids there). I took one bus for my nearly 60 students. Now we have a bus or two that can hold 78 comfortably. This was not the bus we took. But the kids managed to cram themselves in, most 3 to a seat. MJ, the HS secretary, was my chaperon. She said she'd looked back and couldn't see the aisle at all - it was all kids. Heh. But they had a blast getting there and didn't stop singing on the way back.

I've seen the WSU Chemistry Magic Show a few times now - I've taken Eaton students, Tipp City Students, and Newton Students to it. (Hey, I like Frrrrrrrrrrrrrrree!) They do most of the same demos each year, but this year added a few "classics" to their repertoire. The new ones were the Thermite reaction, calcium carbide cannons, and one called "the blue streak" which required a 10 foot glass tube that was at least 2 inches in diameter. A blue flame slowly moved down the tube until it reached the glass wool stopper at the end. Oh yeah, and they reacted burning magnesium in carbon dioxide - I didn't know that still reacted. It pulls the oxygen from CO2! Of course they played with liquid nitrogen, dry ice, electric pickles, alcohol explosions, elephant toothpaste, glow-in-the-dark reactions, etc etc. Very cool show.

Yesterday was a bit of a wash - apart from going shopping with Dad for essentials and having Chinese Food for lunch, I mostly just played City of Heroes and made some ornaments. Today, OTOH, I've been busy all day. I've been working on cleaning up the house some and getting my Christmas decorations out. Oh yeah, and doing laundry. The tree is up and the lights are on. But I still need to finish making ornaments & the green & red paper chain. I've no idea how the kitties will take to the tree & ornaments, so I bought several ornament kits from Oriental Trading to make. And glue dots - I LOVE glue dots! And I'm running out... Wonder if JoAnn Fabrics has glue dots too? (Ah! They do - guess I'll need to go there this week!) Anyhoo, once I get the paper chain made, I'll string it on the tree. Then I'll put up the ornaments I've made so far. Several are personalizable, so I've got "Linus," "Lucy," and "Trina" on several ornaments so far. Heh.

My only regret in this kick off to the holiday season is that we missed the Cincinnati Men's Chorus last night. It just didn't work with our schedules this year. We enjoy going to their dress rehearsal they put on for Dayton PFLAG, but this year was not meant to be. Hopefully next year we'll get to see them again. :-)