Re: aspects of aikido
John, I believe that a practitioner of a "typical" Aikido style could greatly increase the practicality of what they're doing by doing some outside homework on striking.
It's not as much about you being able to strike, as about correcting your own perception of how the attacker can and will strike.
However, at your 3 month mark, I don't think you should scatter your focus in any other direction than your regular Aikido training. Yet.
This early, it is bound to only confuse you, frustrate you and your partners, and slow you down.