Monday, August 29, 2016

Study Traditions

Hey, all! With school starting up again, thoughts on studying, organization, and efficiency are of course on the forefront of my mind. As I was thinking through ways to improve my studying, I thought it would be fun to post some of the ways I've tried that help make my studying a bit less painful.
This is not really a post full of tips on ways to help you study, but simply a post describing the funny little study quirks I have.
#1--Hot Drinks
Personally, I hate sitting still and studying for any long length of time without something to sip or nibble on. Generally, I go for hot drinks, because I love the comforting feel of wrapping my hands around them. In the mornings, I usually drink coffee; in the afternoons and evenings it's often tea. Once in a while, I'll indulge myself and buy a box of hot chocolate, and then carefully ration out the packets. One of my favorite uses for hot chocolate is when I come home from youth group and still have homework to complete; it's comforting for me to have it when I must work, but really want to sleep. Apple cider is great, too, but I'm rarely able to obtain it. :(
#2--No late nights
Unfortunately, I am not one of those people who can stay up late to complete a homework assignment, which means I can't procrastinate and must get it done ahead of time. If I try to work past ten thirty --eleven on a good night-- I kind of become a mess, and don't get anything done anyway. So I almost always work no later than nine thirty, and save the rest of the evening for relaxation.
I love music. And I'm one of those lucky people who is able to simultaneously listen to it and study. Sometimes I choose classical music, but I also pick music that I can sing along to and tap my feet with. Thankfully, I am not like my dad in this way; he, on the other hand, can't even stand the ticking of the clock when he is trying to get something done. For me, music can take the edge off the pain. Usually, I can listen to music unless I'm reading. This year, I'm also planning on listening to some of the songs from the Harry Potter soundtrack, so I can feel like I'm at Hogwarts. ;)
(Sorry I couldn't find a better picture!)
Now, don't laugh at me when you get to this one, but when I'm completing math problems, or answering my science review questions, I love to watch a little TV. Although, it is always something I've seen before, so that I'm not also trying to keep up with the plot of the show. My "homework shows" are usually Road to Avonlea, BBC Merlin, Full House, and I love Lucy. Occasionally, I might watch Doctor Who or Once Upon a Time, as well. It is a nice noise in the background, and something I enjoy looking up at every now and then after finishing an answer.
#5--Study Groups
It is very helpful for me to occasionally get a group of friends together on Saturdays to go over the homework assignments and help each other out; especially in science! We work together for a couple hours, and then make time for a bit of fun. It's a win-win. :)
There, in summary, are my study traditions.
What are some of yours?
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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Elisabeth's Visit {Part 3-July 26, 27}

Finally getting around to blogging the final part of Elisabeth's visit! I apologize for the delay; life has been crazy lately!
 {If you missed my other posts from her visit, you can read them here and here}.
By the time the third and final day of Lissie's visit rolled around, we were all a little tired out from the activity of the previous days, so we opted for a more laid back day. We started out just relaxing and hanging around the house. I don't think I changed out of my sweats for half the day. ;)
Just hanging out. :)
We had already planned to take Elisabeth to Woods Coffee, and let her get a good taste of coffee, and I really wanted her to meet my sister, Brandi, and her kids.
First, we headed to Woods, and enjoyed our drinks and fun conversation.
I was thrilled that Elisabeth loved her drink! My work here is done. XD
From there, we made the decision to head out to a see the view from the bridge. It was so fun! :D
Here is us on the bridge! I'm so short! :P
From there, we headed to Brandi's house for a short visit. It was kind of hectic there, because the kids were all shy of Elisabeth and her mom, and yet were hamming it up to get their attention. Throughout most of the visit, I had two kids on each leg. XD 
Left to right: Kyran, Jackson, Hailee, Alahna, me, Cooper, and Elisabeth. :)
 Elisabeth and baby Tucker. He just loved her necklace. <3 p="">

Sorry, not sorry, for all the Lissie and Tucker spam. :D

Brandi and Elisabeth. Aren't they adorable? :D
We left their house--the Sullivans, I'm sure, feeling lucky to have escaped with their lives--and went to pick up burgers and head back to the house for the evening. We decided to explore our woods while Natalie was out driving, and Elisabeth was horrified to discover the size of our slugs, and to become acquainted with the most monstrous of all--the banana slug. We tried to make videos, but they ended mostly being us talking about and pretending to run from slugs. XD
When Natalie got back, we hung out for a while, and made a fabulous video of the three of us lip syncing to ABC Café/ Red & Black from Les Miserables.
And then, in spite of our carefully laid plans to stay up most of the night, we all went to bed at 10:30.
We woke up in the morning, and instantly had to get ready to leave. To take Elisabeth back to the airport. Quite honestly, I was trying not to think about that part, and just take it one moment at a time. We managed to get out of the door without incident, and stopped for breakfast on our way out. On the way there, I was kind of of watching Elisabeth, trying to form an image I would always remember  of exactly what it was like to hang out with her in person.
When we first left, it was really foggy and cold. We joked that it was to match the mood of the day. XD
Far too soon, we reached our destination. I was unsure exactly how to handle this situation. They unloaded their luggage.
I hugged Elisabeth.
Wait, I need another hug.
Ok. Just one more hug. (Because her mom needed a picture. ) XD
And then she was walking around the corner. I waved at her and watched until she was out of sight.
I thought I was doing okay at first, and then we started to drive away, and I'm not ashamed to say, I lost it. It felt so odd driving away, knowing she was still so nearby, and would be for a little while yet. It felt wrong not to be with her until the last possible second, even though I knew that would be impossible.
Even though it was really hard when she left, and I envy her for not having to walk back into the empty house and bedroom we'd spent so much time in together, I'm so very grateful she was able to visit. It was the experience of a lifetime, and I'm already planning my visit to her state. I can't wait! In the meanwhile, I'm thankful we have memories together, and for the technology that allowed me to meet her, and permits me to keep in touch with her now.
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