Cherry Pie

You know, it is really hard to beat cherry pie.  I enjoyed a most excellent surf-and-turf Valentine’s Day meal – topped off with a slice of cherry pie and some piping hot coffee.

photo of cherry pie

Of course, as spring approaches, I anticipate with gusto the strawberry pies that will be available.  And maybe some fresh strawberries in a meringue shell with a scoop of ice cream on top.

Later there will be blueberry pies and pecan pies and coconut cream pies.  But for now I am enjoying one mighty fine cherry pie.

Before we part, please mark your calendars for Pi Day.  I know it is irrational but it is fast approaching and gives us another reason (excuse) to celebrate.

NuWave Brio Corned Beef Hash

What could be better than corned beef hash on a cold winter morning?  Corned beef hash with eggs and toast and coffee – of course.

One of me special presents this Christmas was a NuWave Brio oven.  Now, I am totally new to air frying but this little oven is a real gem.  It is easy to set up, easy to load, cooks everything quickly and with no added oils or grease.  It is even easy to clean when all is done.  This is a win-win-win.

This morning I fired up some corned beef hash with eggs.  They were sooooo good.

corned beef hash in NuWave Brio

One thing I have noticed is that when using the NuWave Brio, I have to adjust the temperatures and times noted in any recipe or box instructions I am following.  Generally this means reducing the temperature by about 50 degrees and shortening the time by one third.  As I get better with the Brio, I will share my adjustments on this blog.

Happy Independence Day 2016

Happy Fourth of July to all Americans.  This is my favorite holiday – hands down.  Today we celebrate standing as individuals and as a nation on our own two feet and declaring independence.  We will have rousing parades, excellent cook-outs, and some amazing fireworks displays.  Our celebrations reveal much about us as a people.  We don’t bow to anyone, we don’t dip our flag, we don’t go looking for fights.  When called upon, we complete our commitments and we are almost always on the side of an underdog seeking freedoms like those we have. 

As we celebrate our Independence, the world looks on.  Every country has its holidays with unique celebrations.  But how many of these holidays are watched from afar like our Independence Day.  And what other country seems to have a 1-800-Dial-USA hotline that is always open and somehow always responds.  Having an independent nation filled with free men and women generates a power that is unique in this world.  That we use this power to help others without any expectation of homage, tribute, or servitude demonstrates our humanity. 

So, on this day enjoy hot dogs, burgers, and steaks.  Watch the parades and fireworks displays.  The finale will be grand but please remember this day is about independence and freedom.  We are truly blessed in the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Who Do You Want To Be

Who do you want to be?  Or what do you want to be?  A doctor.  A lawyer.  An engineer.  A chef.  Anything is possible.  It just takes commitment and effort.

who do you want to be

Behavior, motivation, sensory input, executive function, drive, grit, satisfaction.

Just do it.

 

Kick Back Day

Today was a great day to kick back and relax.  The sky was clear and the temperature truly balmy – almost hot.  It is definitely a strange year in the weather arena.

I had a chance to read leisurely in my Psychology text.  Experiments and studies, data collection and reduction.  Statistics, correlation coefficients, skewed distributions, equations.  It was all a lot of fun and very relaxing.

cuppa joe

I learned the great value of landing in the control group – you don’t have to record tons and tons of data.  And how you can add “power” to a survey by either adding a lot more questions – especially asking the same thing in different ways – or surveying a larger sample of people.

Homework

How many times have we heard students complaining about homework?  Let me tell you, as a new student, homework these days is fun.  Maybe that should even be FUN.

This week we had a reading assignment in our massive text book.  However, we got to go online to something called “BlackBoard” and print out an outline of the chapter.  Our assignment was to fill in the blanks and tables in the outline as we read the text.  How easy is that?  Piece of cake.

online homework

Even better, on BlackBoard we can access the same set of slides used by the instructor in class.  And even better yet, there are linked in videos to watch – lots of them.  The only thing not flowing from the school’s website is popcorn – and I have plenty of that in the kitchen.

This psychology stuff is all right.  And school is more fun than ever.

 

 

I and Me

I and Me

The two most powerful words in the English language are “I” and “me”.

It is especially interesting how these inward pointing words have the most power when used in an outward pointing context.

“I” understand how you feel.

Let “me” help you.

make it happen

Back In School

I almost titled this “Back to the Salt Mine” but it seemed that Back In School was actually better.  Today was my first day in a class room as an enrolled student, yes taking a class, in 23 years.  It was fun.  It was interesting.  And things have certainly changed.

Last fall, I read a book called The 10 Minute Cognitive Workout.  I was skeptical, but I tried it and got amazing results.  And quickly – almost instantly.  This book explained a thing called cognitive reprogramming.  Reprogram the executive centers in your brain and the rest of you body falls into line.  It really only takes 10 minutes each day.  It really works.  I’ll describe my experiences, tests, and trials in other posts.

brain-regions

Having been bitten by the bug of unexpectedly good results, I did a little reading and found this other thing called neuroplasticity.  In neuroplasticity, our brain is constantly changing and adapting to the things and environments we experience.  And to make things even sweeter, our brain is constantly growing new brain cells.  So, if we are going to tend a garden lets go for a great crop.

I sat today in that purposefully uncomfortable student desk and took the first lecture in my Psychology 101 course.  (It is 102 in the course catalog but that just indicates a way better introductory class).  The professor launched us off with the usual line “so much to cover, so little time” – don’t be disappointed – which is secret academic speak for I am going to kick your butt and if you can keep up you will learn a lot.

My hover board is stowed away.  My text book at the ready.  In class today, I see that most material is introduced on the web and not in the classroom.  You can literally drown in all the stuff a department staff can link into a course web page.  But hey, we’re paying for this and a lot of the posted stuff is really good.  I haven’t experienced online quizzes yet or take home exams or papers written in the internet age.  It will be fun.  Psychologically, I’ll probably finish as a better man.  Or at least a smarter man.