Sunday, February 14, 2016

Happy Valentine's Day!

Andrey is currently in Saudi Arabia on business, so I've been celebrating with EdTPA (ew) and Adriana (yay). Please enjoy this picture of her torturing my cat.
Hope you have a truly lovely day!
-Tascha

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Life Lately

Listening to: Hogwarts white noise simulations

This is probably the dorkiest thing I've ever admitted to loving… I generally listen to either classical music or white noise when studying. This week, while working on EdTPA, I've been pretty much exclusively listening to ambient white noise playlists that are based on imagined Hogwarts scenes. There's nothing quite like writing while listening to audial depictions of different common rooms, complete with quite music, rustling papers, a crackling fire, and occasional owl hoots. If you, too, have an inexplicable desire to listen to 8 hours of imagined Hogwarts settings, you can find a YouTube playlist here.

Watching: Jane the Virgin
I only started this American telenovela last week, and I'm already halfway through the second season! The first episode begins with Jane, a Catholic 23-year-old virgin, getting accidentally inseminated by her preoccupied gynecologist. Needless to say, drama and hilarity ensues, and the telenovela format truly makes it a unique gem of a show. It's also beautiful that there are now multiple TV shows with leading ladies of color! Of these, I especially love Jane the Virgin, Scandal, The Mindy Project, and How to Get Away With Murder. My kindergarteners, most of whom last semester were black, are completely obsessed with Disney Junior's Doc McStuffins - the first big children's show to feature a main black female character, despite studies consistently showing how critical egalitarian media representation is to healthy child development. If only Hollywood (where in 2014, 90% of lead actors and actresses were white, and not a single black person was nominated for this year's Academy Awards) would move in TV's direction.

Loving: Bobst Library
I don't know if I'm still allowed to visit NYU's main library because alumni have regular access or my ID's graduation date is May 2016, but I have spent a lot of time here lately. It feels strange to stroll around campus when I don't actually go here anymore, but there is no better place to write. Speaking of which, EdTPA is officially my nemesis, but this view (actually taken a few years ago) from the library and my favorite lunch spot next door make it significantly less crappy.

Eating: banana cookie dough bites
These little vegan creations are delicious sweet study treats. They're easy to make, and a great excuse to use my new food processor! I found the recipe here.

Happy Wednesday!
-Tascha

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Life Lately

Hey everybody! Here's what I've been up to lately, in a new format I'm trying out...

READING: To the End of June
After four years of tutoring and two student teaching placements, I've seen dozens of children in varying foster care situations. I'm halfway through the book, and I've already gained so much insight from Cris Beam's thoughtful investigation of the American foster care system. In addition to informing my teaching practices, I find it especially engrossing because I've always wanted to foster/adopt children (that is, billions of years from now when I am a Real Adult).

WATCHING: American Horror Story
This season of American Horror Story is a masterpiece (and not just in comparison to the utter trash that was last season, Freak Show). Hats off to Lady Gaga, who is one of the many wildly talented lead actresses this season. That said, anybody with a dislike for completely implausible plots and occasionally gratuitous gore should steer clear.

EATING: Zoodles
Who knew a little handheld device could turn zucchini into delicious, healthy noodles?! I am officially on the hunt to spiralize every similarly-shaped vegetable I can get my hands on.

LISTENING: NPR Politics Podcast
This excellent podcast is hosted by NPR political reporters Sam Sanders (no relation to Bernie) and Tamara Keith, and generally features at least two other similarly-credentialed guests on each episode. It first became a favorite of mine during my daily commute, 90% of which is spent underground with no internet access and often too crammed to comfortably read news on a device. While I have no particular commute at the moment, things have obviously been heating up as primaries approach, and this podcast provides lighthearted yet thoughtful analysis of recent political events.


LOVING: The Dogist
The Dogist is, essentially, the dog version of Humans of New York. While I greatly enjoy HoNY (particularly the insightful project with inmates this week, which can be found here), I am loving all the precious pups featured here.

DOING: EdTPA
I'm officially getting down to business and conquering EdTPA. Apologies if I am somewhat MIA this week.

That's all for now!
-Tascha