Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Movin' on up

As of yesterday, I am 38. I'm not feeling any particular anxiety about getting older, I don't think, especially not with John announcing to facebook that he finds me hotter than ever. :) I cut my hair short recently, and the compliments I got on it (also on facebook) were a nice boost to my ego. I have also been running the 14-minute game on Wii Fit every day (I managed it in 13 minutes the last 2 days), so physically I am feeling pretty good. (I highly recommend the B52s "Private Idaho" as exercise music.)

I imagine I'll be getting off the St. John's wort soon, too. I made a little health journal when I was feeling funny recently, and although I didn't have a way of taking my blood pressure, I checked my pulse a couple of times a day for about a week and a half, and it was up over 100 for the whole time. It was back down to 80 yesterday for the first time and was still at 80 this morning before I exercised. I wonder if it has something to do with my menstrual cycle, or if it has been off and on for a while and I just never noticed it? In any case, it hasn't stopped me from doing what I want to do, so maybe I just shouldn't worry about it for now.

Let's see... Yesterday I hand-wrote notes to all the customers I had last year (in English and German) and sent them out with my business card. I am between jobs at the moment, so it seemed like the perfect time for marketing myself. I also did 3 loads of laundry, helped Hannah prepare for a Latin test on Thursday, and baked cupcakes, half of which were a disaster, although I am not quite sure why. We bought yellow cake mix at the commissary recently, and it should have been a snap, but I think they were not arranged optimally in the oven (all 24 in one go); I should have waited to put the second batch in by itself. Hannah's been eating batch 2--flat and crunchy on the edges--so they can't be too terrible. Well, edible at least. I mixed up chocolate frosting from scratch and slapped that on the "good" cupcakes, but there is still some left for helping the "bad" cupcakes go down.

John has already spilled the beans on facebook about Hannah's school problems. She's doing really bad in 2 subjects, bad enough that she could have to repeat the year. We have gotten her into tutoring, 3 times a week, but it may be too little, too late at this point. She is pretty far behind in math and Latin and may not be able to catch up. We were rather surprised to hear from her teacher, though, that Hannah's attitude seems, to her, to be one of the biggest impediments to her learning. The math teacher we've heard such terrible things about only has 4 students doing as poorly as Hannah. (Latin is an unqualified disaster for all of the students, but that has more to do with them starting so young and having to learn more due to changes in the curriculum.) Apparently, at the beginning of the school year, Hannah put up a sign on her desk, in all of her classes, "I am on strike." I have no idea why she did this, and she only stopped when her homeroom teacher pointed out that she was only hurting herself and her grades with her strike. I had never heard a peep about it until the teacher told us about it on Monday. That made me want to cry. Then yesterday, Hannah came home from school and told us that there was no vocabulary quiz in Latin, which we had been studying madly for for days, and instead she had a major test (the 2nd of only 4 for the whole school year) on Thursday on 2 totally different chapters. I wanted to curl up in a ball and cry at that, as well. But I managed to pull myself together and help her study the "new" material. It is impossible for her to get a top grade at this point, but I gave her some tips about making lots of notes on the test so the teacher can see what she does know, even if she is not able to apply it on the test. Knowing the material and knowing how to use it are not always the same thing, so that is something I am trying to address with her. I've steeled myself to giving her my afternoons to help her with her school work; she won't be able to get caught up otherwise. But with her school schedule and her tutoring schedule, it shouldn't eat too much into my working hours. I will just have to be sure to buckle down when I am working and to be as effective and efficient as I can.

--Nee in Germany is trying to be Zen-like, but fears she is probably more like Cornholio

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