December has finally arrived, and with it comes the precious class-free time that I look forward to every year.  Every year I spend most of the fall quarter thinking about the fact that I have an entire month free of teaching and choosing all the things that I’ll fit into that time.  Research tops the list, of course, especially with the ITiCSE conference deadline in early January every year.  But there are always service things that get pushed off until December, given that during the quarter there isn’t enough time for everything that needs to be done.  This year was particularly bad on both fronts since with the extra class more research and service tasks had to be postponed.  And so I end up here at the beginning of December already realizing that I don’t have time for the tasks I’ve set aside for this month.  As usual I’ll do triage as the month progresses and figure out what the most urgent things are and what is simply going to have to wait until 2014.  I think I’ll also make it one of my New Year’s resolutions to not cram so much into next December.