Math, Maybe.

Yes, I did check out an SAT Math I book from the library.  Yes, I know I was an English major and that I’m not in school anymore.  Nor am I tutoring anyone in math (as if).

I checked out a math book from the library because I have noticed more and more how much I am losing my math skills, and I don’t want them to disappear.  I haven’t done any formal math since my AP Stats class my senior year of high school.  No wonder why it takes me so long to do some simple addition or subtraction.

It’s the sad truth of “use it or lose it,” and while I know perfectly well that I will never purposefully enter an industry that involves a lot of math, I don’t want to rely on my husband to help our non-existent future children with their math homework for their entire educational career.

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Now, you might be thinking I’m crazy for giving myself unnecessary homework in life.  But if you knew Tammy of Younger Years, you wouldn’t really be that surprised at all.

I’ve always loved playing school with my stuffed animals, and I’ve always been that oddball child that enjoyed giving myself worksheets of homework (mostly math) to do during the summer when school wasn’t in session.  I was a weird child indeed.  I think it was the fact that it was something I could challenge myself with minus the pressures of deadlines and grades during the school year.  I wasn’t disciplined enough to necessarily keep up with something weekly or regularly – I wasn’t THAT crazy – but I was internally motivated enough to do something like that every summer.

In any case, I’m not doing so well so far.  I worked on 10 questions almost every day of the first model test to see what I remember and what I need to work on, and it turns out I basically skipped half the test and got a whole bunch wrong of the ones I answered.

It was a little disappointing, given the fact that I was so good at Math A (close to Algebra I?), and had a more difficult time with Math B, which is not the math this practice book is covering.  Sigh.  But hey, it’s just further proof as to why I need to work on this.

Now comes the fun part of going back through the questions, why I got them wrong, seeing if I understand what I did wrong, and then going back through the beginning of the book to review the different types of problems and rules.  Fun, because no one is requiring this of me.  Fun, because I like to get better at things and keep my mind sharp.  Fun, because my husband is a math machine and loves helping me with my questions – which means that he won’t be annoyed by my slew of questions 🙂

 

A napkin idea

photo-1470169048093-08ac89858749If I didn’t write in my journal this morning, I’m pretty sure I would have exploded.

I’ve been having a lot of feelings lately.  Just pick an emotion, and I’ve probably felt it at some point within these past couple of weeks, if not all within these past few days.

Unfortunately, I have not been on top of my reflection/processing game as I usually am.  My job keeps me busy, so there’s always a crazy long list of things to do, but this season of work at the beginning of the academic year is always a bit more chaotic and crazier.  I’m more physically tired, so it’s easier for me to prioritize sleep over reflection, and I am stretched way out of my comfort zone more frequently in this season, so it’s easier to re-energize with other life-giving activity and overlook taking the time to pause and be still.

But I decided that today I needed to make sure I did that before all my feelings spilled out of my sleeves.

As I was reflecting in silence, I noticed how the clouds were moving pretty quickly through the perfect blue sky.  It made me think about how stressed out I and other recovering perfectionists like I can get about things not going the way we planned or hoped, or the unfinished tasks and failed attempts to complete them – and yet the earth keeps on spinning and the clouds keep on moving no matter what the outcome is.

It kind of felt like the beginning of a song.  The words would be different, of course, because the image of clouds feels pretty cheesy to me, but I like it as a subject – the constant rolls of stress and yet the little control of movement we have and the reminder to slow down, take account of the really important things, and don’t forget that the world won’t fall apart if we mess up.

That’s about as far as I got with the idea, though, because I still needed to sort through my trough of feelings (ugh, feelings).  But I wanted to write a little bit of something here to remember that moment and that little idea to see if I could spend some more time on it later.  Kind of like when you have an idea and you grab a napkin because you want to write it down before you forgot and that’s the first or only writing receptacle you can get your hands on.

Seasonal dieting?

While I have not yet written about the reasons, Nathan and I hIMG_3446ave recently been challenged to grow in our habits, practices, and values around the sources and quality of the food we eat and cook.  And one of the ramifications we’ve started thinking about and moving more towards is a practice of eating foods in season.

There are a lot of reasons to eat foods in season.  One of the main reasons Nathan and I want to is because it allows us to more readily support local farmers who try to grow food with farming practices that care for the quality of the crops and quality of the environment those crops are grown in.  Plus, the minimal need for packaging or transportation can help minimize our harmful impact on the environment.

That being said, what better way to go further into “seasonal dieting” (a term I completely made up, though according to Google it looks like I’m not the first to think of it) in the summer than to pick berries at a local farm??

Nathan and I have been traveling around a lot this summer (what else is new, I guess), but I was intentional about making time to pick berries because of the immense benefits for everyone, as well as what fun it is to do it especially in thIMG_3451e summer.

Of course, it also brings me a heavy dose of nostalgia because the first time I ever went raspberry picking (I only ever went blueberry, apple, or strawberry picking in my life) was with Nathan during our honeymoon.  We basically ate raspberries that entire week and only almost got sick of them.

And what we discovered when we went out to G and S Orchards was that they had YELLOW raspberries available for us to pick!  I mean, who knew that these beautiful, tasty things existed??  Surely not I, said the Tamaria.

So now, not only was I excited to support our local farmers, have fun picking berries, prevent a little further harm on the environment, and feed myself some nutritious, delightful food – but I now had an exciting new fruit to learn about and take colorful photos!

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See?  Win-win-wins all around for everybody!