Hey ya'all, Meg Craig over at Insert Clever Math Pun Here followed her tweep at https://mathbythemountain.wordpress.com/ who blogged about FOOD prep. So I thought I would play along because, ya know, we are talking about FOOD!

Just a disclaimer, I am from Sebastopol, California. Our former mayor owned the first dispensary, we have not one, not two, but three Waldorf inspired schools in our town, and the HS t-shirt is a blue and white tie-dye that says, "Just because I go to Analy, doesn't mean I am a hippie."

We have great soil and an agreeable climate and we grow amazing food.

That being said, eating healthy, even VEGAN, can be easy and delicious. (not a vegetarian, not a vegan, but because so many of our friends are, I have had to adapt). Oh yeah, and gluten free too.

I am NEVER without the following ingredients:
--Kosher Salt
--White Pepper
--Roasted Chili Paste
--Dark Sesame Oil
--Rice Vinegar
--Lemon or Lime
--Box of Soup Stock

So here are my two offerings, both easy, gluten and dairy free.

Black Bean Veracruzano with Salad
Black Bean Veracruzano Served with brown rice and salad:

½ onion diced small
2 stalks celery sliced and diced
2” pasilla pepper diced
2TBSP olive oil—saute above for 5-7 minutes

Add 2 chopped tomatoes or equivalent amount of cherry tomatoes sliced in half
½ cup 1” chopped green beans
1/3 cup pitted and chopped green olives
Saute another 3-5 minutes

Add 1 zucchini quartered and diced
2 handfuls of chopped swiss chard
1 flat tsp kosher salt
½ tsp white pepper
1 flat tsp cumin
Saute 5-7 min

3 TBSP lime juice
½ cup chopped cilantro
1 cup black beans
Cook on low flame for 5 minutes

Serve with Brown Rice

Mom’s Ramen

1 small onion chopped
Sauted in

2 TBSP grated ginger
2 medium or 3 small cloves of garlic peeled and smashed, but whole
And 1 large grated carrot
Saute for 3-5 minutes more

1-2 tsp Dark Sesame (Roasted) oil
And 2 cups chopped swiss chard
6-8 inches lemongrass stalk sliced
½ chopped red pepper
Saute for 1-2 minutes

2 TBSP Tamari
2 cups vegetable stock
1 tsp roasted chili paste (mixed with ¼ cup hot water)
And 1 cup 1” chopped green beans or french green beans

Bring to boil and simmer for 15 minutes. In the meantime, Bring a pot of water to
boil for ramen noodles.

Cook Brown Rice/Seaweed Noodles in boiling water for 1-2 minutes. Immediately
submerge in ice water.
Drain and return to cooking pot with 1 tsp sesame oil.

Roast ½ cup cashew pieces on 300 degrees for 6-8 minutes.

Serve by starting with noodles in bowl, then broth and veggies, then sprinkle with roasted cashews.

Serve with fresh ground pepper.

I have found a lot of comfort in the beauty of the novelists and cinematographers of 2017. I treasure the creative spirit that allow me to suspend myself in an alternate universe every now and again.
Here are some of the highlights:

Screen Shout Outs:

This year's Jewish Film Festival:

The Women's Balcony


The Wedding Plan

In the Big House:

The Big Sick


Super Quirky Movies That Made Us Laugh:

The Little Hours

Los Malcriados

And of course: Stranger Things Season 2

The Beauty and Power of the Words I Have Read This Year:

Into the Beautiful North* (I recommend EVERY teacher read this book)

My Year of Meats

The Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

The Glass Castle

A Man Named Ove

We went to see Rachel Price and Chance the Rapper and listened to Jim Doherty's (@mrdardy) play lists and listened to a lot of Choro music. I took a lot of Ukelele lessons and played a lot of the easier Beatle's tunes. I drowned out my fear by listening to Pod Save America and Pod Save the People whom had a lot of smart guests who give me hope. I marched, I wrote a zillion postcards, we started giving regularly to the ACLU and the Southern Poverty Law Center, along with NPR and a long list of environmental groups. (the planet has a hard time protecting itself).

I ran, I rode, I hiked, I walked, and due to a foot injury in October, I have gotten back in the water and have been swimming and swimming. Now to get back on my feet, to do what I love most, run and hike, and add in yoga. (More than my morning sun salutations)

I re-read my end of the school year post from 2016-2017, and I still struggle with finding ways to capture the imagination and interest of ALL my students, I am still a terrible police woman getting better with monitoring the headphone plugging in and texting in my classroom. The BEST thing I did all year, so far, was to ask my students, "what do you need from me?" I have had 3 boys that I know of hospitalized for depression, and at least a few others students adjusting to anti-anxietal medicines. (This really scares me.)

My favorite new poster is a quote from Grace Chen (@graceachen), "We are influenced, but not wholly determined by our environment."

Maybe starting a new semester is a good time to ask that question again, "What do you need from me so that you can focus on learning?"  And, What can Ms. Z keep doing that supports you as a math learner, and what is something different Ms. Z can do support you as a math learner?

Happy New Year you all. May your year be healthy and delightfully adventurous!

PS I just finished reading "The Importance of Academic Courage," on Edutopia. I like the idea A LOT, so now I am thinking of changing the questions I ask upon the return of the students, "What do you need math courage in? and What do you have math courage in?" (or something like that!)