#HailingFromHome with the Academic Affairs Team

Academic Team in Zoom meeting screen smiling toward the camera

Academic Affairs team looking toward one another from Zoom meeting screens view

Here is what the Academic Affairs Team is up to while #HailingFromHome...

Currently watching:

Kathy: My daughter has gotten me hooked on Criminal Minds on Netflix. Lucifer—no judging. Ordered Disney+, so I'm watching/rewatching the Marvel movies.

Callan: Little Fires Everywhere (Hulu) & Win the Wilderness (Netflix).

Meghan: Ozark, Dispatches from Elsewhere, Community, and rewatching Star Trek: The Next Generation for the umpteenth time.

Stephanie: The Good Fight, Little Fires, and Mrs. America.

Jen: I like to keep it simple and have reruns of The Office and Parks & Rec running in the background while I do other things.

Paula: Atlanta's Missing and Murdered: The Lost Children—Five-part HBO docuseries on the Atlanta murders of 1979-1981. Over the two-year period, at least 28 children, adolescents and young adults were killed.

Currently listening to:

Kathy: Various types of music, from oldies to rock.

Callan: Happy Folk playlist on Spotify!

Meghan: Some of the podcasts currently on rotation: Imagined Life, Endless Thread, Skeptoid, Stuff You Should Know...

Stephanie: My go-to’s are Willie Nelson, Prince, and the Cocteau Twins.

Jen: Summer hits of the '90s on Pandora.

Paula: Some of my favorites are: Motley Crue, Judas Priest, Poison, Skid Row, Scorpions, Fleetwood Mac, Queen, The Rolling Stones, REO Speedwagon, Falling in Reverse, Five Finger Death Punch, Hinder, Avenged Sevenfold, Korn, Mudvayne, My Chemical Romance, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Sublime, Seether, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, and the list goes on... Podcasts—anything true crime.

Currently reading:

Kathy: Nothing, but I have two Kindle books I recently purchased that I would like to start reading.

Callan: A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon. It's the sixth book of the (very long...) Outlander series.

Meghan: Stephen King's Revival and Kent Rollins' A Taste of Cowboy: Ranch Recipes & Tales from the Trail.

Stephanie: In no particular order: Daring Greatly, Straddling Class in the Academy, The Well-Spoken Woman Speaks Out, How to be an Antiracist, Infinity Net, and all my cookbooks.

Jen: Nothing at the moment...I've been focusing on crafting and attempting to sew masks in my free time.

Paula: Where the Crawdads Sing, Delia Owens.

Currently cooking or baking:

Kathy: Whatever our picky daughter will eat.

Callan: I'm baking EVERYTHING—Macarons, eclairs, breakfast loaves, s'mores bars, donuts... You can check out my recipes on thecozyplum.com or my Instagram @thecozyplum.

Meghan: Now that the weather is warming up I've busted out the ice cream maker!

Stephanie: Veggies and weekend pizza. I dream of finding the ingredients to make my own sourdough starter.

Jen: Banana walnut bread.

Paula: Spinach ricotta pie, Italian sausage and tortellini soup, Homemade manicotti, Lemon pound cake, Limoncello.

One thing I'm letting go of:

Kathy: Trying to control things, which is hard to do in our current situation.

Callan: Not being able to get everything I typically find at the grocery store—it was frustrating at first, but I'm getting more creative/relaxed about it.

Meghan: Dress pants.

Stephanie: Planning.

Jen: Having a schedule and a plan that I can control. This whole experience has really taught me how to go with the flow and adjust plans at the drop of a hat.

Paula: Letting go of the stress that comes with planning things too far in advance because you never know what the next day may bring and change.

One thing I'm welcoming into my "new normal":

Kathy: Enjoying eating meals all the time with my family. Before, we were only able to eat together once or twice a week, especially with our daughter's school/work/cheer practice/games schedules.

Callan: Having two other "co-workers" in my house who are not affiliated with Pitt ;)

Meghan: Unannounced Zoom appearances by my two cats: Daniel Tiger and Money Bags.

Stephanie: Gratitude and sharing.

Jen: Connecting virtually with my friends and family. In a lot of cases, I am more in touch than I had been under the "old normal." I also love my 30-second commute to work!

Paula: Not having to commute to work every day.

My favorite surprise during this time:

Kathy: Being able to work near a window, especially when it's sunny outside.

Callan: My cat has become much more affectionate and seems to really be enjoying having us at home :) It will be hard to leave her floof at home when this is all over.

Meghan: Using Zoom to have virtual brunch and game nights with my friends back in the Bay Area.

Stephanie: Watching my garden bloom one day at a time.

Jen: Creativity, for sure. I love seeing how people at work, home and anywhere have channeled their creativity to overcome the new limitations. Anything from virtual happy hours to drive-by birthday parades to modernized advertising—I never thought I'd see pizza commercials that highlighted "no contact" delivery.

Paula: Finally getting my attic cleaned out and converted into an office/guest room. This was a plan when we originally converted the three very small attic bedrooms to one big room (about 18 years ago). This was then halted for over 16 years while three nephews lived with us. They have all now moved out and retrieved their belongings so that we can have our space back!

When this is over, I'm really looking forward to:

Kathy: Seeing my family, friends and co-workers again! Hugging my family and friends as well!

Callan: Seeing my niece and nephew, going camping, rescheduling vacations, hugging my friends!

Meghan: Grocery shopping without anxiety, visiting my favorite local dive bar, sunshine.

Stephanie: Never saying no to a social invitation.

Jen: Hanging out with my friends and family and shopping at Michael's!

Paula: Spending every Sunday afternoon with my mom.

Drink of choice:

Kathy: Coffee and water in the morning; water, milk, soda in the afternoon. Usually water in the evenings before I go to bed.

Callan: Seltzer water for LIFE! Also, red wine.

Meghan: Cheap: Whiskey coke. Fancy: Manhattan.

Stephanie: Weak oolong tea, wine, and (just recently) whiskey.

Jen: The three essentials: Coffee, Water & Wine—Cheers!

Paula: Hot tea, iced tea, water, Baileys Salted Caramel, Limoncello (as soon as the new batch is done).