First Semester? Check that one off the to do list!!

Happy belated holidays, everyone!!  I’ve just begun my second semester at college and I’m loving it!!  Looking back on my first semester, I can definitely say it was an adjustment, to say the least!  I found the amount of work manageable, but wasn’t thrilled with my chemistry professor.  My roommate was kind of a pain, but she was homesick so she transferred.  And to make everything worse, I broke my hand and rowed on it for the entire season…owww!!!  But wait…didn’t I say that I loved college?? I’ll say it again just in case you missed it.  I LOVE COLLEGE!!  I have the most amazing group of friends, and my teammates are pretty great too. I love rowing here and being part of the outing club (I’m actually going winter camping with them next weekend, and skiing with them every wednesday during the winter!! ).  And I feel like I’ve learned how to live with people in close quarters and I’m a pro at studying now.  I have a new roommate who is fantastic!  She’s so funny and genuine and I can’t wait to spend the rest of the semester and the next three years with her.  Also, one of my best friends from high school has just arrived on campus because she had january admission to the college! I have to admit, going from the luxurious vacation life of getting enough sleep, and watching TV to organic chemistry  and german classes all week was a bit of a shock, but I’m getting back into the swing of things.  And the good news is, I’m close enough to home to go home for the weekend sometimes or to take trips with friends and family. Last weekend my family went skiing in the Adirondacks to celebrate my little cousin’s 10th birthday.  It was SO much fun!  And just like flying down a mountain on skis, college is so exciting and has a certain feeling of freedom that you just can’t feel anywhere else.  I wish you all a wonderful winter!  Until next time, my friends (aka when I have enough time to write another post!). ImageImageImageImage

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Boston, England and the WORLD!!

Faneuil Hall at night

The end of my crew season was fantastic!!  We had great results at our regattas and I ended the season as the only freshman rowing in a varsity boat, which was very exciting!  Unfortunately I have a stress fracture in my hand so I can’t row for a while ( or do anything involving my upper extremities) which is a bummer.  My classes from this semester are great and coming to a close in the next few weeks.  Today I registered for next semester’s classes which will be sociology, organic chemistry, german and comparative literature.  I’m just really hoping for a good chem professor because this semester has been rough…to say the least.  But luckily my grade is doing well now and I think I’m starting to get the hang of it!  It’s also nice having a break from crew and having a bit more free time. This past weekend I went to my teammate’s house in Boston and it was SO much fun!!  We walked around town, went to the aquarium and saw the Blue Man Group.  It was HYSTERICAL!!  I also found out today that I will have the opportunity to travel to England this summer for the Henley Royal Regatta which is literally the most legitimate regatta in the world!  It’s the opportunity of a lifetime and one that every rower dreams of.  Needless to say, I REALLY want to go.  And what’s next?  I’m not quite sure!  Thanksgiving vacation is starting this weekend and will run for ten days.  I’m excited to see my family and be home for a while.  Then it’s the home stretch before the semester ends.  And after that?  Maybe it will be an EMT class so I can be part of my school’s emergency medical service.  Maybe it will be research or an internship.  I guess we’ll just have to see.  I hope everyone has a fantastic holiday! Stay warm and stay safe!!

New Beginnings

Well…here I am one and a half weeks later. AT COLLEGE!! And let me just start out by saying that it is AWESOME here.  I spent a week in the Adirondacks with a group of 8 students from my college.  We went on an amazing backpacking trip and we all became really close friends.  The trip took us to the high peaks region where we hiked across Indian Pass.  The views were beautiful and it was a ton of fun.  But now, I’m back on campus for orientation.  I’ve met my roommate (who is very nice) and I’m starting to adjust to college life.  But I swear…If the orientation leaders make us play any more dumb games, I may cry!!  I may not have time to update for a little while just because of everything thats going on but I’ll try!  Enjoy the rest of the Summer!

Oh Canada!!!

This past weekend I took a two day and one night trip to Canada.  It was a “going to college trip” from my aunt Janet and 9 year old cousin Ronan.  So on Friday we loaded up the car and drove three hours to Niagara Falls.  This trip was pretty exciting for me considering that the last time I was at the falls was 14 years ago when I was 4.  Even just driving there and spending time with my family was so much fun but once we got there it got even better.  We were lucky enough to have a room with a view of the falls.  Really the falls are truly AMAZING, if you haven’t been, you really should go sometime during your life.  The amount of water that cascades over the falls (5.5 million gallons per hour) is magnificent and powerful, it mesmerizes you.  So after we gawked at the falls for a while, we made a trip to a huge, nearby arcade called “Dave and Busters”.  We played games for a couple of hours and laughed so hard we cried (this was one of the highlights of the trip for Ronan).  After that we had dinner overlooking the falls and went to bed early (or tried to go to bed, I won’t even try to describe the challenge of sharing a bed with a flailing nine year old).  The next morning after breakfast at the hotel we headed for the “Maid of the Mist” boat ride where we were able to get a great spot right in front.  This trip is another reminder of the great power and strength of the falls and gives you a really close look (if you can keep your eyes open amidst the spray).  Not only was it an incredible and educational experience, it was nice to cool off from the 97 degree heat!  After the boat ride we headed for the “Journey Behind the Falls”.  For this adventure, you take an elevator down to some tunnels deep below the earth and you literally watch the back side of the falls fall right in front of your face!  You can also stand on a viewing platform for another nice shower, just in case you didn’t get wet enough on the “Maid of the Mist”.  And after that we got in the car and headed back home with a quick stop for dinner at the Anchor Bar in Buffalo NY (home of the original buffalo chicken wings).  Although it was short, it was a really fantastic trip and it was great to spend time with my aunt and cousin.  Since my cousin and I are both only children, we’re really close and even though Ronan is only 9, he already wants to go to college at the same school I’m going to!

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Pre Orientation

With 23 days left until school starts, it’s time to start thinking about pre orientation. My college has two choices for pre orientation (or you don’t have to do any and you can just come for regular orientation on the 25th).  The first choice is a community service trip where you work with a group of other incoming freshmen on an outreach project in the towns and the city near the college.  In this trip, you not only work all day at your community service project but you also sleep at the service location in a tent!  The orientation program that I’m doing is a lot different.  It’s an outdoor adventure trip where you can choose between backpacking, canoe trips, rock climbing or a combination.  My trip is a point to point backpacking trip through the Adirondacks and it is going to be AMAZING.  The trip starts at the Adirondack Loj and takes us through the stunning Indian Pass where snow can be found even in the middle of summer!  With this pre orientation program, not only do you get to challenge yourself through a difficult hike, you get to know a group of incoming freshmen very well before regular orientation begins.  So with that in mind, I’m heading off to EMS to update my collection of backpacking supplies.  At the end of the 5 day hike, the entire group participates in a ropes course and then goes to a formal dance to celebrate the week on the trail.  I guess college is LITERALLY going to be an adventure!!