The Press-Dispatch

February 17, 2021

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Katiedid Versus By Katiedid Langrock Instant imposter syndrome "We're nature people," the people in the campsite across from us said. "So are we," I replied. "I mean, I'm guessing most peo- ple here are." We are currently in a campground in central Flor- ida. A river snakes through the 450 -site campground, marked with signs every hun- dred yards begging people to beware of the serpents and not feed the alligators. Wild- life kills! it warns. Beware, be- ware, beware. The Instagram-perfect mom in the wide-brimmed sun hat looked at me and scrunched her nose. "I dun- no," she said. "I think most people think they are nature people but really they just like the idea of nature." Is she a witch? A time trav- eler? Had this young woman with the perfectly blended sun-kissed makeup seen me on a hike with my kids just two hours prior to this con- versation? Because I think maybe she did. And if she did, well, busted. I love nature. I moved to the wild. I've thru-hiked. I was trained in wilderness sur- vival. I've camped for weeks, pitching my own tent, making my meals and then packing up camp to move the next day. Then I taught my husband to join me. Now my children are learning. We're living out of an RV, for goodness' sake! I love nature! I do! I do! Real- ly, I do! At least, I think I do. OK, here's the thing. It's not my fault. Snakes love me. You know that. They find me and follow me and stick their tongues out at me as if I were their second-grade school picture photographer. And snakes are, like, really great at cam- ouflage, so it's not as if they gently slither into my periph- ery like the sun rising gently through my window, awaken- ing me with its warmth and slowly growing glow. No! They're just suddenly there! And my heart leaps. If they could work on their gentle sunrise approach, we'd prob- ably get along dandy. It would also be nice if the alligators worked on that. We've been in Florida for a month now. It's been lovely and lush and lively. However, I've learned that that there are lively things living in that lushness — and there is a sign directly across from my camp- ground screaming beware, be- ware with a big ol' picture of an alligator on it. So was it really my fault that when I had taken a walk earli- er in the day with my kids — through the dense bush that skirts along the river with the snakes and the gators — my directions to my kids had gone a little like the following? "Ooh, look at that gorgeous tree over there! It looks as if a fairy village lives upon its bended limbs. I want to hug it. Hey! What are you doing? Get back on the trail! Stop hugging that tree! Mama says stop! " And then: "Babies! Look at this still swamp! How the light makes perfect reflec- tions of the trees in its shal- low water. I bet we could look in and see our faces. Hey! I didn't mean to actually do it! Get away from the edge! Dan- ger! Snake! Gator! Retreat! " And of course: "Now this is a good climbing tree. I bet you could touch the clouds from the tippy top. Who said you could climb this tree? Get down! There could be red ants, venomous snails, radioactive frogs, grasshop- pers of doom! There's no tell- ing what's up there! " Maybe Insta-mom had heard me squawking worried death scenarios like an over- protective sea lion. Shark! Ice- berg! Asteroid! The look she gave me re- minded me of the time I was in a hos- tel while backpack- ing Europe after college. I'd been on my own for a month, figuring out how to live on $20 a day, including accom- modations. A girl on the bunk bed across from me looked me up and down and said, "Ameri- can." I hadn't spoken a word. "How'd you know? " "Ponytail, white sneak- ers — obvious." She said it with such disdain that I'd felt ashamed — not of being American but of somehow be- ing a poser. Instant imposter syndrome. Here it was again. I'm a na- ture imposter. I love it, but I'm scared of it. I want to be in it, but I'm not one with it. I teach my children that the best way to be safe in nature is to respect her strength, which includes knowing her dangers. But perhaps I could lessen the anxiety a bit. Ex- cept when it comes to those grasshoppers of doom. Be- ware! Beware! " Follow Katiedid Langrock on Instagram, at www.insta- REDUCED TEMPERATURE SWINGS ENHANCED PERFORMANCE IMPROVED DEHUMIDIFICATION Variable-speed technology means invariable comfort. The Infinity ® 20 air conditioner combines the energy efficiency of Greenspeed ® intelligence with the convenience and precision of the Infinity System Control. With reduced temperature swings, improved dehumidification and ultra-quiet operation, the Infinity 20 air conditioner will have you more comfortable than ever before. Energy Efficiency That's Right in Your Comfort Zone. ©Carrier Corporation 4/2018. PH: 812-743-2382 HEATING & AIR-CONDITIONING LLC Serving the area since 1950. Perry ' s Perry ' s 303 Breckinridge Rd, Monroe City Email: Craig Perry Vance Perry Chase Perry Is it TIME for your next eye exam? 8–7 . Mon. 8–noon . Tues. 10–7 . Wed. 8–5 . Thur. 8–5 . Fri. Locally Owned and Operated Dr. Clint Shoultz 715 S. 9th Street, Petersburg 812-354-9400 BLEND OF THE BAYOU MEALS IN Monica's MINUTES Share your favorite recipe! Monica's Meals in Minutes PO Box 68, Petersburg 47567 FACEBOOK MAIL EMAIL By Monica Sinclair I know I have been pushing the healthy recipes so far this year. However, I figured I needed to take care of my readers that aren't on a diet. This will be a recipe I try once I have lost my weight, unless I figure out how to trim it down some. It's full of seafood, veggies, rice and cheese, a perfect combination. Enjoy! INGREDIENTS • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, cubed • 4 tablespoons butter, divided • 1 large onion, chopped • 2 celery ribs, chopped • 1 large green pepper, chopped • 1 pound cooked medium shrimp, peeled and dev- eined • 2 cans (6 ounces each) crabmeat, drained, flaked and cartilage removed • 1 can (10 -3/4 ounces) condensed cream of mush- room soup, undiluted • 3/4 cup cooked rice • 1 jar (4-1/2 ounces) sliced mushrooms, drained • 1 teaspoon garlic salt • 3/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese • 1/2 cup crushed butter-flavored crackers (about 12 crackers) DIRECTIONS 1. Preheat oven to 350°. In a small saucepan, cook and stir cream cheese and 2 tablespoons butter over low heat until melted and smooth. 2. In a large cast-iron or other ovenproof skillet, sauté onion, celery and green pepper in remaining butter until tender. Stir in shrimp, crab, soup, rice, mush- rooms, garlic salt, pepper sauce, cayenne and cream cheese mixture. 3. Combine cheddar cheese and cracker crumbs; sprinkle over top. Bake, uncovered, until bubbly, 25 - 30 minutes. Source: tasteof YOUTH FIRST TODAY Importance of family involvement at school By Kelsey Weber Youth First, Inc. Many people gauge levels of student academic success based on teacher sta- tus, academic grades, or socioeconomic status. However, the real key to student success is none of these. The best indica- tor for student academic success depends on how involved families are with learn- ing at home and in their child's school. Families involved in their child's edu- cation at home and at school have higher academic achievements than those who do not. Many staff members such as so- cial workers, teachers, counselors, and administrators play a vital role in con- necting families with their school by en- couraging family engagement. Family engagement is not only parent interest in their child's learning; it is a shared re- sponsibility with staff and teachers to meet educational goals and encourage a student's growth. When families are engaged in their child's school life, kids develop a love of learning that will expand their knowl- edge base and sense of wonder. When teachers focus on family relationships, they often see change with those chil- dren in their classroom. The more teach- ers involve parents, the more motivation, positive behaviors, and good grades in- crease. Teachers often encourage parent en- gagement and involvement by inviting parents to school meetings or events, asking them to volunteer at school or get involved with P TSA, or suggesting parents meet with their child's teacher to set goals and objectives. When parents and teachers commit to this learning at- mosphere and work together to help stu- dents succeed, this is when we see suc- cess and growth. So, why is parent involvement so im- portant? When school staff establishes relationships with families early on, fami- lies will feel more welcome and more will- ing to be involved in their child's educa- tion. If those relationships are not estab- lished early on, parents may feel they are not supposed to be part of their child's learning process. Other factors can create a disconnect between parents and teachers, such as scheduling conflicts, transportation is- sues, and lack of cultural awareness for low-income or minority families. Work- ing together to overcome these obstacles is an essential part of being an active par- ticipant in a child's education. Children with engaged parents are more likely to earn higher grades and test scores, graduate from high school and attend post-secondary education, develop self-confidence and motivation in the classroom, and have better social skills and classroom behavior. According to, children with engaged families are also less likely to struggle with low self-esteem, develop behavior- al issues, or need redirection from their teacher in the classroom. So, how can parents become more in- volved with their child's school life? Save contact information for your child's teachers to be sure you can easi- ly address any concerns or questions re- garding your child's progress. Connect with the school by attend- ing school events, meetings, and par- ent-teacher committees. Discuss classroom goals with teach- ers. Be responsive to both positive and neg- ative feedback from teachers about your child's progress. Teachers can encourage more family involvement in the following ways: Give parents your contact information to encourage parents to reach out when needed and establish a strong communi- cation with the teacher. Invite parents to connect with the school by sharing school events, meet- ings, and parent-teacher committees. Discuss classroom goals with parents. Establish a connection with parents in person as much as possible. Communi- cate often with both positive and negative B-2 Wednesday, Feburar y 17, 2021 The Press-Dispatch HOME LIFE TO ADVERTISE: Call: 812-354-8500 Email: Visit: 820 E. Poplar Street, Petersburg Deadline: 5 p.m. on Monday Karan Thacker, AFSP Owner THACKER TAX SERVICE 906 Blackfoot Drive Fort Branch, IN 47648 812-615-0071 (offi ce) 812-789-3852 (cell) Continued on page 3

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