I don't know if this will help any or not.
I am also very new to aikido. I have about a month and a half under my (pristine white) belt. In the 1st few weeks I was totally confused also. I just watched, tried to participate, and enjoyed the atmosphere. Lately, in the last couple weeks some of the techniques names and movements are starting to sink in. I'm sure all the ideas everyone has put forth are excellent and I'd try as many as you can, but for me its all about time and a willingness to continue to try. Good Luck, Tom, and enjoy the journey!