Reminder: It’s Teacher Appreciation Week!

Teacher Appreciation Week May 1st- May 5th

CELEBRATE teaching staff by participating in one or more of the categories below to say THANK YOU!!!

One thing that my lovely blog followers don’t know about me, is that I LOVE participating in Teacher Appreciation Events. My sister-in-law is a teacher and I have countless friends that happily immerse themselves into the teaching world. My kids are better for their involvement and it really is a thankless job. I miss my stay at home mom days when I was able to volunteer weekly and make friends of my children’s friends. I was the “cool” mom, if there is such a thing. HaHaHaHa!

Since I can’t make the added hurdle of room mom, I make sure I participate in this entire week. Below is a list of a couple things you can do to celebrate the wonderful men and women that are so vital to your children and their childhood. Do one or do them all either way the teacher’s will be so excited that you are getting involved. You never know what they are going through and having a special week catered to them can work wonders.

You’ll notice my list isn’t particularly DIY heavy and I honestly can’t keep up with my crafts, so this is a pretty simple list. Perfect for the mom or dad on the go.

Monday: Bring your teacher some of their favorite tasty treats (drinks, candy, snacks)

Tuesday: Bring your teacher their favorite flower. (homemade, potted, stem, painted, folded)

Wednesday: Bring your teacher a card or meaningful note.

Thursday: Bring your teacher a much needed supply for their classroom. It’s approaching the end of the year and supplies will be running low!

Friday: Do a kind deed for your teacher. (In advance or at school)

Also, check out what your school PTO is doing. They always make sure even the least involved classroom support has some sort of recognition. Plus, you’ll be a cool parent to your little’s!

Love,

N.K.

Tiny House, Tiny ecoLab

One of my first big projects, outside of my Wetland Restoration Work, is working on creating and building my own mobile lab (Or as many of you know them as, A Tiny House). One that is Environmentally Sound and is stable enough to go on location to Environmentally unstable areas. I don’t want to create an ominous and scary sterile lab but one that is capable of taking the dirty hit that my field requires. A home away from home when I’m in an area that isn’t my home. That’s why when I stumbled upon the Tiny House, Big Living HGTV show, a tiny lightbulb went off in my head. They are built sturdy enough to travel and would replace the added expense of a hotel! Perfect! Plus, I get to sleep around science!!!!  Nerd Squeal—It’s a thing!!!

History Behind The Idea

The idea of my own lab didn’t happen organically. It arose after a troubling meeting with the President of my University in the Fall. My Tribal University that I attend is not without its major hurdles. It takes some serious dedication to attend there. Haskell is severely underfunded and is quite dilapidated. But despite all of this I love this University. Not for what it has the potential to be but for its historic past. That I can choose to attend here when children the age of my own kids didn’t have that option. Haskell arose from the crippling era of forced Native American Boarding Schools and turned into a place of hope for our critical cultural revival.

I was informed that even if I secured grant funding for a lab on campus there just wasn’t going to be the campus support for lab space or resources for me to access for research. It broke my heart hearing that because attending a school as unique as this opens the door to specific types of grants but if the campus couldn’t support it, I was facing the very real possibility of having to leave.

Despite my Heart Breaking into a Million pieces, I made an off the cuff comment to the President about building my own Tiny House if I needed to. She Laughed, then I laughed, then the secretary laughed. I don’t think even I truly believed it could be done. However, from there the idea took root despite not really taking it serious at the time and I began to panic because the time for my research was coming up within the next year.

The Future Of My Tiny ecoLab

My Tiny ecoLab will have a future past Academic Research. After school is completed I have the exciting Field of Environmental Consulting awaiting me.  This is where my Tiny ecoLab will serve it’s long-term purpose. It will be tackling Environmental Issues with me from sea to shining sea. I relish the idea of doing some wide-scale Environmental Cleanup work on Turtle Island. My people have been guardians of this wonderful land for thousands of years. And we loved it. I am excited that my field gives me the opportunity to continue this amazing legacy. While I will be focusing on working with Tribal Entities my work won’t end there. I love the idea of working with Tribal Entities because we are all so diverse and our Environments range from Lush Forested Regions, to the Desert, and all the way to the Prairie at the Heart of the Country.

What’s Next?

Fundraising… I will be launching a GoFundMe Project in the next two weeks. The link will be posted and a new post will be put out when that goes live. So Stay Tuned!

  • I have spent the last few months developing this site and compiling preliminary research on Tiny Houses. I know my first step will be on the acquisition of a Trailer. So that became the first major part of this journey. I have decided to go with the Tumbleweed Cypress 20 floor plan.

Love,

N.K.

NASA Kiksapa Internship

Last week, I was informed of my acceptance into the NASA Tribal Kiksapa GIS Internship for the Summer of 2017!

I have been vying for this opportunity for the last year and a half. It is the opportunity of a lifetime to be able to intern for a NASA program. I can’t really believe it really happened. All the work, sweat and tears have finally paid off.

The program will be centering on GIS and Geospatial work. **GIS is Geographical Information Systems. A mapping program at its core. I started off last year as someone who was severely technologically handicapped— hahaha. I had to work extremely hard to rise to the occasion. I may have crashed one…or two… or three…computers in my quest but I mastered that stinking program.

My acceptance email came on a Tuesday. The Tuesday that will go down in my baby scrapbook thanks to my doting mother. Just kidding, about the baby book. However, she was probably more excited than I. I may be slightly deaf in one year after that fun phone call. My mom isn’t a science person and isn’t really down on our lingo but she listened as I squealed in excitement over the phone. She lives a state away so it’s our only form of communication. Yes, I know I’m a grown adult with my own children but my mom is the proud mother to a college student, regardless of my age.

Many students in Science don’t realize the potential of having a GIS background. A large amount of available jobs have it as a requirement. Plus, if I must admit, it’s super cool to be able to interpret data. It’s a pretty SWEEET piece of software.

Honestly, I would just like to thank my mentor who has religiously stood by my side and fixed my computers along the way. With only one sigh in exasperation! A herculean task! He’s the real hero.

 

Love,

N.K.

Coffee With A Side Of Science

 

I love Science. Particularly, the amazing field of Environmental Science. My office is currently a Wetland that I’m in the middle of Restoring. It was once drained so the area could be used for Agriculture. So I have been given the gift of restoring it to its Natural Beauty. And Beautiful it is. It’s a diamond in the rough but the area is rich in history and biodiversity.

This diamond in the rough has stolen a piece of my heart. The first time I visited the site I could feel the potential. It was hard to access and I may have tripped over the makeshift pallet bridge on my first excursion into the area… But once I reached the marooned dock, I could see the amazing critters that happily called it home. I even found some hard to find vegetation thriving in the area. The area had been repeatedly disturbed– but there it stood. A little broken and in need of some “Earth Doctoring” yet it was trying in vain to adapt itself to its drastically changing world around it. (Credit to my daughter for coining that phrase) So I picked up the reigns and headed it’s Remediation and Restoration Efforts. Through that decision, I found myself Rainboot deep in the scientific community. Because after that day I ran out, bought the cutest pair of rainboots I could and started the process of designing it’s revival.

My Wetland is located on the Haskell Indian Nations University Campus. It’s around 100 acres. Some of the Restoration efforts I have implemented have been a Prairie Restoration, Monarch Habitat Creation, and Sustainable Design Principles. I love that this job isn’t too Scientific Oriented but also Culturally Relevant. I have had the opportunity to connect with Tribal Entities that I had no idea existed. The United States Tribal Community is large and diverse. With so many different cultures associating with the natural wonders of each climate region. I found that I loved the Prairie work. Learning what simple plants and trees means to area tribes has been fascinating to learn. I hope to continue this work and catalog this process with you all.

Stay Tuned…

Love,

N.K

Welcome to My Tribe!

Hi Everyone!

This is my first foray into the Blogging World! Welcome to My Tribe!!!  I’m so happy I FINALLY figured out this whole blog setup process AKA the countless nights of crying into a pillow (in frustration) process. Like I said, it has been quite the process. But here I am, writing out MY FIRST BLOG POST!! I can’t explain the pure joy I’m feeling right now.  I wish there was a bottle of champagne in the fridge… but it’s past midnight and all I have is my twice microwaved coffee to rejoice with. Thus is the life of the boring mom on a lame Friday Night!

Like I so cleverly alluded to above, I am a Mom. A pretty cool one at that! It’s the best job in the world. I have two beautiful children (a Boy & a Girl) and we all reside smack dab in the middle of America. In this little state called Kansas. Which means we are BIG fans of the Kansas Jayhawks. I’m talking huge fans. I guess that makes me a Midwestern Mom. It doesn’t have quite the ring a Southern Mama has but I think it’s just as effective. Being a mom to my two little cuties means I have taken on the herculean task of being the CRAZY Cool Soccer Mom, PTO Mom, overly involved Mom… You name it. My kids are My World. I went from being Super Stay At Home Mom to Full-Time Student Mom. It was a very difficult transition and trust me, it hasn’t been without its epic fails. But I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Speaking of my Full-Time Student Status; I am currently finishing up my Bachelor of Science Degree at a Tribal University. I LOVE Environmental Science. I want to scream it from the roof tops how much I love my chosen career. It’s a dream come true. If you would have told me 3 years ago that I would be at the top of my class in a Science Field, I would’ve told you how absolutely out of your mind you were. It’s still a shock that I’m thriving and totally up to the challenge as a Minority Woman in Science. That I could connect my Tribal Heritage to an amazing Science Field is such a gift. I can’t even explain it adequately, the happiness that I feel.

Attending a Tribal University is another gift I’ve been given. That I didn’t know they existed yet alone one was located down the road from me is still awe inspiring. Over 100+ Tribes are represented at my University. Being less than 1% of the population, Minority-wise, means that being surrounded by hundreds of people, of your own background, in such large quantities is mathematically improbable in this large country.

I love this dramatic turn in my life. It has changed who I am fundamentally. This Book, DIY, Science, Writing, and Mom Nerd is finally on a Journey that I could have never imagined. And I’m so excited to share all my goals, dreams, and shenanigans with my New Blogging Tribe. I can’t wait to get started!

 

Stay Tuned…

 

Love,

N.K.