I once tried to formalize all the grammar and words (character, meaning, sound) from a year-long Chinese language course. I did it. It took a long time. It took a lot of paper. I aced the final exam with no trouble. I then I went back to learning Chinese.
Formalizing is good for exams, exams are formal. Application....
The dojo I call home is across the country from me. I haven't been able to go home in over a year now. When I trained there the Japanese names of techniques were mostly a blur (our sensei also used english words, but those didn't stick around much longer in my mind) and I rather followed Sensei's demonstration. Now I'm still learning from the principles and ideas I found at that dojo.
I think I got two benefit from that blur of different movements and concepts we tackled. First my ukemi has at least three times saved my neck on icy staircases. I never knew I could do breakfalls before that... fancy how that works. Second since there are no Aikidoka in reach (Nobody willing to practice at my little college and the nearby dojos are too expensive for me
) I've started practicing with one Karate and one Hapkido (yikes!) student and the principles I learned at my dojo have let me improve my Aikido by practice with two very non-Aiki arts (we use each other as uke and nage for technique practice but we don't try to argue about what works what doesn't, etc...)
So I think the blur of stuff can just happen, it IS a good way to learn. It is very non-traditional for the US so it's hard to just let go and let it happen over the MONTHS that it takes to get a sense of what's going on.
But if you have time so spend on learning names for techniques and conceptualizing irimi this versus tenkan that... it's also a good way (it's what I do when my practice partners flake and I'm feeling Aiki-deprived...).