Thursday, July 30, 2009

Wow, a new post following so quickly on the heels on the last. I'll try not to make it a habit. Although to be fair to myself, this is one the few times in the last month and a half that I've had the down time to sit, write and communicate.

I've finished the STEP program. After a month of intense study, I have picked up some basic Gemara (the extended part of the Talmud) reading skills which will certainly be a great benefit in the coming year. In a few days I'll be heading up to Haifa for a month for an intensive ulpan (hebrew learning program). In the last week I've been mostly scrambling about Jerusalem to meet with the Jewish Agency and Nefesh B'Nefesh to finish up my Aliyah application. Having completed STEP, my time table has been freed up considerably (see my old schedule below).

I still make time to learn the weekly Parsha (Torah portion) every morning and read some Mussar (Jewish ethical philosophy). But now when I come back from town in the afternoon I learn Quantum Mechanics for two hours (from Sakurai) with my friend Gary who also learns at Machon Shlomo. As far as quantum textbooks go, I can't say I'm thrilled. But as my friend Javier said, and I felt his analysis was particularly true "it get's the job done". Although I've only skimmed Shankar (the other seminal grad text for QM) I feel like it would suit my mathematical tastes a little more.

I just finished The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt by Edmund Morris, which was simply a momumental biography. It's certainly lengthy (780 pages) but it's incredibly exciting and a fast read. I sprinted through the last 300 pages in a few days. I'm looking forward to reading the sequel (of a planned trilogy), Theodore Rex. Before reading The Rise, I was mildly interested in TR from my high school days in AP history. Mr. Barnshaw, my history teacher was a big fan and passed on the bug. TR stands as probably the most brilliant president we've ever had and is responsible for much of American culture as we know it today.

In between reading TR and Aliyah stuff, I've been putting the finishing touches on the first of a pair of shoes I'm doing for my mom. Here are some pictures:

If you've been following my blog, or know her personally then you know she is an incredible stained glass artist.

She asked me to make her shoes with butterflies and flowers (a subject I was not too thrilled about at first).
So I tried to capture that aspect of her artistic expression in this shoe (and I'll finish hopefully the pair by the end of August).
I use regular sharpies on canvas shoes.
And I try to capture an aspect of a person's personality to make them personalized.

Layla tov.

1 comment:

  1. She's going to love them! As do I. Nice work, brother!