Thus far, the Counseling Psychology program has been really great. My classes are interesting (my favorite so far is my Research Methods in Social Psychology class), and the people are wonderful (I heart my cohort! That's 4 out of the 5 of us at left, Sam's missing). I love the intellectual environment and being surrounded with people who are passionate about their work. However, to be honest, it's been a challenge to get myself back in the same mindset when I was last in school. The stakes feel so much higher. So much more to prove. All this pressure to realize my "potential" and produce. The Psychology Department at Minnesota has a long tradition of excellence, and I still can hardly believe that I am a part of it. I really need to get over these blocks to my self-efficacy so that I can (hopefully) kick some graduate school butt.
This is Elliott Hall, home of the Psychology Department. Basically where I live.Since this is my new home, I have been trying to get settled in - meeting lots of new people, connecting with an old friend (Susanna S, who is on Channel 5 news!), getting used to my neighborhood (called Uptown), and taking in the local sights and eats (though I have yet to figure out what is "Minnesotan food"). Susanna and I checked out the Minnesota State Fair, which is a really big deal around here. It's like Buffalo Grove Days meets Six Flags meets Taste of Chicago. It is supposedly the second largest state fair second only to Texas, which is granted to be huge! I got to indulge in the deep-fried gluttony of the State Fair, including deep-fried oreos and cheese curds (which were really good, but their strength and saltiness was a little much by the end). I also had the best pulled turkey sandwich EVER there!
On the food front, I have taken up cooking and baking quite a bit. It's one of those things that I find so comforting and gratifying to create something (and even better to feed others!). It's also quite cost effective, considering I am now officially poor. I've been thinking of doing a regular entry on this blog called "The Frugal Foodie" (on Fridays, of course!) Maybe I should just start a new blog? At any rate, I want to chronicle my adventures in food given my monetary restrictions. Hmm, anyway, keep posted on that. I promise to offer lots of pictures and recipes. I already have a bunch of things I want to write about: my foray into making pizzas, quiche, some Filipino dishes, the Farmer's Market, and more. Stay Tuned!