When Helen leaves her nursery (Julia Durbin) in September, she will have been there for just short of four years. There have been month-long breaks for trips to Australia and shorter holidays, and she only goes to nursery four days a week, but that's still 30+ hours a week for most of her life — all her life that she has any memory of. And she is part of a tight-knit community in her preschool, the break up of which will be a huge change to her life. [The comparable adult experiences I can think of would be shifting from one hunter-forager band to another, or retiring after having worked in the same job for one's entire life.] more
A friend tagged me on Facebook with one of those "list ten books that had an impact on you" memes. This has turned into more of a "books that were influential in my life" list, ordered chronologically; it verges on being an intellectual history and probably has way too much detail for most people, if indeed it's of any interest at all.
Short list: The Lord of the Rings, Latin in Three Months, Life: Cells, Organisms, Populations, an unknown year 9 maths textbook, Tactics of Mistake, The Peloponnesian War, Shardik, Community, Anarchy and Liberty, Firewalls and Internet Security: Repelling the Wily Hacker, The Life and Adventures of Trobadora Beatrice as Chronicled by Her Minstrel Laura. more