Stray Thoughts Sunday

Stray Thought Sundays

Another Sunday is here already!  This week was super busy and then Thursday night we were bit by the summer cold bug and we’ve been more or less down and out ever since (although I tried to do my scheduled activities yesterday and I think that actually made me feel worse today – I needed rest – so today is nothing but couch).  Hoping to feel much better to start the Fourth of July week off tomorrow!  Here are some of my Stray Thoughts from this past week:

1.  Helping others helps me.  Last Sunday, I went to the opening activities for this year’s Summer Bridge.  I started participating as a faculty mentor last year and plan to continue every summer that I am available.  The first activities we do are team building activities/games and I think I learn as much about myself as the students learn about themselves!  I love the unity and support and investment that both the staff, volunteers and students make in this week and a half.  There are workshops to prepare students for college, English classes to bolster their writing preparedness, math workshops to boost their scores on the math entrance exam (where needed), and bonding activities to give them a built in cohort when they arrive at school in the Fall.  Last year, I was a little intimidated and felt like I was not really much of a help (luckily, since it was my first year, I was paired up with someone else and that helped take a little pressure off of me).  This year, I feel much more prepared and ready to be there for these students.  I go to a few activities over the course of the week and a half and serve as a resource for them in the Fall.  It is a lot of fun, but also emotionally tough.  These students come from some seriously bad pasts.  They are survivors and fighters and incredibly inspirational to me.  But, it also makes me hurt for them.

2.  This definitely is something you have to be of “a certain age” to understand.

3.  Another great photo that included one of our local Sierra Nevada beers!

4. Seeing all these sleeping photos from my Instagram last week makes me think this summer cold my daughter and I are now suffering may have been brewing for a while.  She does not usually sleep this much during the day!

5. Instagram was really good last week!  This one is for the cat lovers (and haters) out there!

6.  The vaccination controversy is heating up even more.  As the mother of an immune-suppressed child who can not get the MMR vaccine because of her transplant, I have some pretty strong opinions about this.  I believe in public health and I believe that crises can be averted through vaccination.  So, this decision in NYC is very interesting to me…

7.  One word for the new Paddington Bear movie – Creepy.  And I’m a Paddington Bear fan, but whatever they are using to animate him in this movie just made him look really creepy!

8.  Some really educated and impressive people talking about a really difficult but important issue – Science and Religion.  Check it out.  I heart Bill Moyers.

9.  Sports confluence.  My favorite baseball team’s pitcher, Tim Lincecum pitched a no-hitter last week and his teammate, Hunter Pence gave some of the credit to the US Soccer team, who sent both Pence and Lincecum jerseys – read about it here.

10.  Our city has a lot of issues with homelessness right now, so this bench design is definitely something that would be controversial here.  What do you think?  I would love to hear thoughts in the comments!

So, those are my top ten Stray Thoughts for this week.  I would love to hear some of your thoughts about these thoughts in the comments!

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2 thoughts on “Stray Thoughts Sunday

  1. The students are blessed to have you. Not everyone would care about their pasts the way you do and I know from personal experience that someone like you can make a big difference.

    The bench design: I LOVE it. I can’t imagine putting spikes somewhere to discourage people, unless it’s after the zombie apocalypse and cannibals are running free. A lot of the homeless are veterans and the mentally ill, our most vulnerable people who need our help, and they are treated as if they are less than. If it wasn’t for my mother, because of the consequences of my bipolar disorder, *I* would be one of those on the street. I ‘m one of the lucky ones.

    and less seriously … Paddington. He does look creepy, as in I-wouldn’t-want-him-in-my-room-in -the-dark creepy. I’ve loved Paddington since I was a kid, but there’s something off. and the ear wax thing gave me the willies. (I can watch horror movies and not flinch, but ear wax frightens me, lol.)

    • Thanks for the thoughtful response Lauren. I am so glad I get to work with the Summer Bridge program and it has helped change my perspective with other students in my classes as well. So many of them are struggling to get through in so many different ways but so often we instructors just view those stories as excuses. I am happy to be given some additional perspective.
      And the benches are great to me. But I am more for compassionate than punitive responses. I agree that too many of our homeless are the most vulnerable but so any think they are there by choice. It is a tough problem with too many complexities. But the benches are humanitarian to me.
      And finally, I thought of Chuckie when I saw the Paddington. Definitely would not want that bear in my room!

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