Sunday, January 31, 2010

Bugger! Has that song already been sung?

January 31, 10 p.m., eastern standard time.
From here on in, I type without a script.
As per my new resolutions, I have been making many changes in my life. The biggest is that I've randomly started using the word "bugger" instead of "oh, shoot." I don't know what it is (or why, seeing as I haven't watched Bridget Jones in over a year) but it's making me smile every time I say it. I also held an "informational meeting" for the community living project through my church, and there are a lot of people who think it's valuable and I learned that I need to pray more but that God is definitely "doing something." Things look like people will support this idea and I'm hopeful that we will be learning more about God and the world around us next year!
For the meeting, I made a dessert. I know what you're thinking: two bowls? If someone were to ask me "If you were to write a cookbook, what would it be called?" It would be something like "My Rough Guide to Cooking Anything in One Mixing Bowl with One Measuring Utensil." But this meeting called for something special: something a little s'more, if you will. And I will.
I couldn't find any way to make these s'more cupcakes by Bakerella in one bowl. (And those of you who know me really well know that my cookbook would actually probably have s'mores in the title, or at least in the dedication section.) I made cupcake batter and added crushed graham crackers to one half and chocolate to the other. The cupcakes were layered - above is the graham mixture on the bottom, plus half of a marshmallow (a.k.a. cupcake implosion device).

and then the chocolate plus some more (get it?) crushed grahams on top for the finale...

And magically, these worked, except for the occasional implosion, which was fixed with a marshmallow. They were a hit.
Beyond the cooking and community living realm, I have been visiting a good friend who has been in the hospital on campus and I've been floored every time I've visited with how much God has revealed to me through her and her family. She's supposed to be discharged tomorrow, so may I charge all of you to pray for her and her family as that happens?
Oh, bugger, I guess I'm in classes too. (Gets me every time. Aren't you smiling?) I'm learning about learning in Educational Psychology - need an idea for a paper topic soon, maybe stereotype threat and mathematics, if that counts as a topic?; my Adolescent Psychology is shaping up well - currently reading about peer influences on risky decisions; Covariance Structure Modeling is grand, as always, and I get to play with matrices. I finally feel like Joel in class - I don't have to listen close enough to be incessantly taking notes, so I take fun notes. No poems yet, because sometimes he asks me questions. I do have a note that says "Matrices everywhere!" in the same voice you'd say, "Babies everywhere!" And then I'm preparing for a service spring break trip to - Columbus, Ohio! (Womp womp.) I am really excited for it and I just met some of the participants last week, and they're amazing. So yay!

Has anyone else noticed Justin Bieber's new song (Love Me) sounds an awful lot like The Cardigans? As in, so close that I don't understand how it's not the same song?
And, as I was typing in the scrollover text, I realized that I want to know if he really means one less lonely (which could mean one less-lonely) girl or if he means "one fewer." Grammar kids? 'Tell me what I want to hear.' And yes, I do like him. Bugger.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Bachelorette parties

Calling All Bachelorettes!

Cynthia Buettner, Ph.D. at The Ohio State University is looking for current bachelorettes, recently married women, and their girlfriends who have participated in a bachelorette party in the past 12 months. The study consists of completing a 10-15 minute online survey related to bachelorette parties. All of your information is completely anonymous and confidential. 
Participants must be 18 and over to participate. 

The survey can be found here:

Thursday, January 7, 2010


What I learned today:

1. Endogenous variables can not have covariances in a path diagram. Redundant, implied in other parameters.

2. Setting the variance of an endogenous variable is a non-linear constraint because the variance is implied with other parameters.

3. God is oh-so-good. Like, really. He's great. (Surprise, right?) I had some amazing "teachable moments" that God kind of plopped in my lap, and I am frequently amazed at the things He does, and how quickly I forget what He does even seeing every grand thing. And folks, prayer is important. Please pray for my friend who is hospitalized, and for her family. She's been improving but there's a lot of room left for improvement.

4. Things that I think are big deals... usually aren't.

"Be still, and know that I am God;
       I will be exalted among the nations,
       I will be exalted in the earth.
 The LORD Almighty is with us;
       the God of Jacob is our fortress.
 - Psalm 46:10-11

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Happy January!

"Whoa, I didn't know that's where Arizona was! So, like... Arizona is south of most of California."
"I would have said east... but that's your call."
 And yes, folks, she has her masters now.
My other side of the family has pictures on facebook. (Chris just joined the group i wish both sides of my families used facebook. Just kidding. But he might have.)

Guess what! Someone has been really helpful to me this semester and so I made a little diaper bag! Full of character! But also quite girly for their first girl. And it was difficult. I'm going back to making aprons after this.

It did turn out well. And I love the fabric. And there are pockets galore. That would be one great thing about having a kid - getting to carry gigundo bags with pockets everywhere. If someone makes fun of it, you just shrug your shoulders and pull out the baby! (Just kidding. But babies are an automatic exemption from the giant purse spectacle.)

"In being honest [about the state of the world], the Bible welcomes you to be honest as well. In its refusal to minimize, diminish, or deny the harsh realities of this broken-down house, the Bible calls us to face the facts as well. Things are not okay around us or inside us. The brokenness presses in on every side."
 - Broken-Down House, Paul Tripp

As for the New Year, I do have some questions. We talked about how there are no pure motives for resolutions... and while resolving to know "nothing but Christ and Christ crucified" would be an amazing resolution, in my mind, it lacks in ... practicality? application? I do not know how to resolve to do that, much less do it. What happened though, is that I haven't written any resolutions, and I don't think that was the point. So I need some resolutions to write down.

I'm doing fairly well on the less-meat resolution - next step (thank you, Food, Inc) is maybe committing to buying meat and produce from local grocers if possible? It is... if I can convince myself that it's worth the extra money. I think it is in theory - we'll see how important I act like it is.
Also in the food thing, I want to start sharing meals with more people, not eating by myself, watching Accidentally on Purpose online or reading cookbooks. Also, also with food - (should I have a resolution that does not deal with food?) I want to make some new things. Homemade tortellini or tortelloni? I got some new cookbooks for Christmas, and they have some fancier foods in them that I'll have to try. And more than just desserts.

Other resolutions are to keep running, swimming, to try something new - I don't know how well you know me, but I have trouble with change. I don't like new situations, new people, new phones (always like the previous one better, and still mourning the one I lost in a snowbank a few years back). Everything is scary. So I am resolving to try something, somewhere, NEW. Most likely, it will end up being a new sport or activity. I don't even have to like it. I'll try to be honest with myself about what's new. (Skipping all day? Singing instead of talking? Yeah, I won't let those count.)

Resolved to write more. Not here (go ahead, say "Phew"... Okay, done?) but creatively. All the stuff I'm too scared to put up here, I want to write.

Resolved to find a charity and donate to it regularly. I set aside a small portion of my stipend for charity, but this year, I feel like I'm haphazardly looking for something that I deem worthy (like a cricket farm!! Thanks, MercyCorps!) or just waiting for someone to approach me and say, "Do you have x amount to donate?" No one does, by the way. I found, which tells about foundations and how their donations are handled, but I'd love suggestions on what everyone else does too.

Lastly, this quarter is off and running. I took a spinning class this morning (not new... but my first class) and am learning bundles about adolescent psychology, educational psychology, and covariance structure modeling. Did you know more and more middle school and high school teachers are reading aloud to their students and saying it helps? Did you know that all polar bears are left-handed?