Thoughts on this week:
What I’m Reading in real life: SO MANY COMPS BOOKS.
What I’m watching: I'm really into the new tv show Downward Dog. Watching it on Hulu.
What I’m listening to: The Sacred Ordinary Days podcast
Two years ago:
Three years ago: Let It Go (Spiritual Uprising)
Six years ago: The tale of my travels and the start at Notre Dame (PP&P): I kind of can't believe it's been that long.
What I read this week:
Prison Diary: From the Revivalistic to the Ethical (Experimental Theology): This talks about the struggle of shifting from justification to sanctification, perhaps one of the most difficult shifts in our daily life.
For the sake of our democracy, go back to church (or synagogue, or mosque) (Dallas News): I love this line: "It's like belonging to a family. The enduring genius of that primeval institution is that in families we learn to live with people we didn't choose. Similarly, in churches and synagogues and mosques (when they are healthy and diverse) we learn the same lesson." I think that this is an important and challenging part of being religious. I noticed that the author is Catholic. I don't think that's a coincidence. It's all too easy for Catholics to feel like we don't belong or to not get along with their parish culture (ahem) but we still have to go.
Paperbacks (Reading, Books, and Writing):
John Irving on Donald Trump, Caitlyn Jenner – and the right way to wrestle an angry bear (The Guardian): In keeping with my theme of reading about my authors...
Is Writer’s Block a Form of Self-Protection? (Writer Unboxed): I think that this article applies also to other things, like reading for my exams. I relate to this part on a very personal level: "Self-protection is an undeniably strong instinct. And if a writer is going through a traumatic period, writing can seem like a luxury. But writing has been a proven tool to help put trauma in the past where it belongs and it can help people – not just writers – rebuild and envision the future." Sitting around and reading is absolutely a luxury right now, but it's also my job and I struggle with that because I am also needing to affirm that my existence has meaning and purpose, which seems to be questioned by having the answer to "what did you do today?" be "I read books."
'Parthenon' made of books built at site of Nazi book burning (The Local): What a moving monument.
How to Practice Writing Like Van Gogh Practiced Painting (The Write Practice): I'm thinking about this as I prepare for writing my dissertation and also for teaching my first Comp 2 class in over a year (I've been on the Comp 1 train for a loooonnnnggg time).
Ways Writers Can Hack through Distractions (Live, Write, Thrive): I NEED TO DO THIS!!!
How Billionaires Stole My Mind (Raptitude): So, I'm not sure that I could really handle a technology detox because it's part of how I get my work done (okay, a huge part of my distraction from work, too), but I like this idea: "For the next 30 days, I will not be waking up to a torrent of images, opinions, jokes and fears from around the world. The first step was to get the most addictive apps—Facebook, Twitter and Reddit, for me—off my phone. I still have accounts, and will still use them, but I’ve set them up so that I can’t reach them from my bed, or from waiting rooms, coffee shops, and sidewalks. And they can’t reach me in those places. All my social media use will be done “2007 style”: when I want to use one of these services, I have to go to my desk, and manually “log on” by typing in my username and password. At least for the next 30 days, social media will no longer have an all-day, or even everyday, presence in my life. I want to use them like the tools they used to be, picking them up when I need to use them and putting them down when I’m done." I don't have a lot of these apps on my phone, but I will admit I've given in to the app addiction more lately. Might give this a try!
Life in General:
A to-do list trick (Modern Mrs. Darcy): This looks like a great idea!
Bad at remembering to take care of yourself? These 25 tips can make it almost automatic. (Upworthy): I struggle with this a lot and hope that this will help others like me!
We Really Need to End the Stigma about Introversion in the Workplace (Introvert, Dear): This reminds me of one of my most frustrating moments as a campus minister interacting with another campus minister. I was at Naz Farm and made a comment about how I'm an introvert--I was telling my duckies I was going to go get introvert time and they could come get me if they needed me. Another CM turned to me and said that I couldn't be an introvert because I was so bubbly and friendly. I had to explain what introversion really means (not shy), but I really wanted to punch him in the face and be like, well, our job REQUIRES us to pretend to be extroverts, but all the best CMs are introverts underneath!
The Best Walking Workout for Non-Exercisers (Fitbit): Kind of obvious, but a good reminder!
The Disease of Being Busy (On Being): Oh my gosh, I had forgotten this phrase that I used to use all the time with students. How fitting to be reminded that I am a human being, not a human doing right now: "Tell me you remember you are still a human being, not just a human doing. Tell me you’re more than just a machine, checking off items from your to-do list. Have that conversation, that glance, that touch. Be a healing conversation, one filled with grace and presence."
To Make You Laugh:
What the Heck’s a Pupper? New Video Explains Internet Dog Lingo for the Rest of Us (Daily Treat): For those of you who need help with this new doge lingo!
10 Fierce Dogs Channeling Their Inner Wonder Woman (Daily Treat): Everyone needs this in their lives.
Golden Retriever Puppy Battles Doorstop in Adorable Video (Daily Treat): I was going to share only two dog things in this section, but then I pressed play on the video and Gary freaked out and started whining because he wanted to play with a pupper and it was just too cute.
Academia, Education, and Teaching:
8 Tips for Teaching With Mentor Texts (Edutopia): In our program, sometimes we struggle with mentor texts that don't match our learning objectives. I'm spending a lot of time thinking about this as we prepare for the next term.
At Northwestern, Not Just Adjuncts Voted to Unionize (Chronicle of Higher Ed): Good information here. I'm glad that others are standing up for adjuncts!
Rebooting Industrial Era Seating (Edutopia): This is something I think about, too. At UD we had tables that allowed us to sit in a circle. Now, I have to take time out of every class period to have my students move their high school-sized desks into a circle. We need a new norm.
Detours and Diversions — Do Open Access Publishers Face New Barriers? (The Scholarly Kitchen): Interesting thoughts. OA is a big topic in lit crit circles.
Double-Edged Sword of Dual Enrollment (Inside Higher Ed): I have a lot of opinions on Dual Enrollment classes and community colleges, both from the perspective of a current instructor at a large research university and as a former dual enrollment student and the daughter of a former community college student. I think that there's a lot of room to improve a system that should be serving both its instructors and its students better.
I'm Never Assigning an Essay Again (Inside Higher Ed): I'm in love with this essay and can't wait to see how I can adapt his ideas to my student's work.
How Acaddemia Uses Poverty, Oppression, and Pain for Intellectual Masterbation (Racebaitr): This article is very challenging for me, as a white woman studying Chicana and Native literature. I was struck by this statement: "One of the tragic consequences of a traditional system of higher education is working with colleagues who claim to have expertise on the topic of social activism, but who have never experienced any form of intervention. I am referring here to those academics who have made careers out of the pain of others by consuming knowledge obtained in marginalized communities." I think it's good to consider these perspectives as I go forward with my dissertation.
Simplicity and Minimalism:
- How to Maintain Motivation to Simplify Your Life (Be More With Less): I think that this article is pretty helpful. It's easy to start the process of simplifying and purging, but harder to follow through.
Making a Marriage Magically Tidy (NYT): I thought this was a great article about keeping clean and how to change your habits.
Money, Budgeting, and Finance:
Why Splitting Your Savings Can Give You a Boost (Grow Acorns): I'm thinking about different ways to do this.
101 Ways To Start Saving More Money Today (The Financial Diet): I don't know about all of these, but this is a good read for people looking for ways to save money!
Environmentalism, Farming, Food, Health, and Nutrition:
U.S. Leaders Respond to Trump’s Paris Climate Deal Pullout, and What You Can Do (Modern Farmer): Obviously, I'm upset about this, but I'm glad our real leaders are responding.
How Do I Keep My Dog Calm Around Guests? (Daily Treat): #workingonit
Responding to False Alarm, Police Shot and Killed Family Dog (The Dogington Post): This is terrifying. I don't know what I would do!
5 Things You Should Never Forget When Preparing for the Pet Sitter (Daily Treat): Good information!
The Unbearable Whiteness of the Liberal Corgi Owner (Racebaitr): So, at first I was pretty upset about this title, but after reading the article, I get it. I'm all about dogs being off leash (in places where it's legal) when their owners are present to make sure they are behaved and safe or when in a fenced-in backyard. But letting your dog go into someone else's yard? THat's bad parenting and bad manners. However, it does get complicated in my apartment complex, as my facebook friends are already aware. None of my neighbors care that gary is off-leash as long as he is nice and stays with me (my preference too, obviously). But people who don't live here seem to think they have the right to complain? Ugh. Leashes are more complicated than I ever realized before I got a dog.