Adventure Awaits

I am trying to fit my life into a school backpack for ten days.

We finished finals for two of our classes, and now we are off on our ten-day, mid-semester break! I guess you could say that Megan and I will be backpacking through Europe, which is crazy. I think it didn’t really hit us until now that we are traveling through Europe by ourselves for ten days, because we’ve been in Ireland (sort of) by ourselves for so long already.

Traveling through Ireland is very different from traveling through Switzerland and Italy though. We don’t speak Swiss German, and I haven’t taken Italian in three years. Plus, we won’t have data, so Google translate won’t always come to our rescue.

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But what’s adventure without some tourist sign language and getting a little lost!?

I may or may not have spent 2.5 hours writing out all the directions and details for just one day of travel.

These past few days have been all about cleaning out the fridge. Lots of eggs, leftover rice and pasta, and overnight oats!

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white rice, beef, tikka masala sauce + an egg on top

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avocado egg toast! ♥︎ 

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white rice, spicy tomato sauce, beef

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It says “end-of-life” on my paper because I was studying end-of-life issues for ethics, just FYI.

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whole wheat pasta with spicy tomato sauce, beef, and some goat cheese that a friend was trying to get rid of

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overnight oats never get old

Megan and I decided to rent the first Harry Potter book from the library to read during our travels, since neither of us have ever read the books.

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I am genuinely excited.

I am also currently eating bunches of spinach with my fingers dipped in hummus, so that’s where we’re at. Nothing out of the ordinary though.

Hopefully, I can keep you guys updated on the big trip as we go from city to city. I’m not bringing my laptop, so we’ll see how well posting works on my phone. If not, we’ll have a heck of a lot to catch up on when I return! If any of you have recommendations for places to eat or things to see in Zurich, Padua, Assisi, or Rome, hit me up 🙂

Have a fantastic weekend, whatever you’re doing and wherever you go. Pick up an old book that you’ve always wanted to read.

So tell me:

Have you ever backpacked through Europe?

What is one thing you’ve been eating repetitively this week?

Have you ever hopped on a book bandwagon extremely late?

Day in the Life of a Third Semester Sophomore

What am I? First semester sophomore? Third semester sophomore (since this is my third semester of college)?

do know one thing I am: frazzled. School is starting to pick up with exams and such, but so are activities. It’s such a blessing to be busy doing things that I love, but hellllloooo, long days.

Now that it’s been almost a month since I started classes, I thought it this would be a good time to share a day in the life again. I managed to document my whole day on Wednesday, which was one of my more packed (but fun!) days.

7:05 AM— First alarm goes off. Check emails on phone.

7:15 AM— Roll out of bed and go to the bathroom.

7:25 AM— Pray.

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7:35 AM— Change and try to look presentable for the day.

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8:00 AM— Walk to my favorite dining hall for breakfast in the gorgeous weather. Praaaaaaaise.

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8:15 AM— Nosh on eggs, French toast with peanut butter and banana, and a glass o’ milk while studying a bit.

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9:00 AM— Move outdoors to study in the [again] GORGEOUS weather.

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10:00 AM— Head over to the admissions office to get ready to give a campus tour!

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courtesy of the admissions office // also, this was taken a couple weeks ago, but this is the essence

11:45 AM— Finish up touring [in the gorgeous weather] and talking to a family from the tour. Walk back to my room to change into athletic clothes because: a) sweating in my jeans; b) dance later; c) living in anything other than stretchy, comfy clothes is overrated. Pick up a special package on the way home.

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11:55 AM— Get back to my dorm room, open up the package {from the awesome folks at PJ’s Organics!}. Rip off my jeans like they’re going completely out of style and change into yoga capris and a t-shirt.

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the joy of free pits and aeration

12:10 PM— Meet my friends (badass, Division I soccer playas) for lunch at the dining hall.

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12:45 PM— We all walk to human physiology lecture (favorite class this semester).

1:50 PM— Get out of class and head to the Catholic Center to do some studying. Eat a banana sometime there. Talk with people because they’re really cool and fun and I like them. Ugh, so distracting.

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3:10 PM— Walk to the gym for my modern dance class. ‘Twas an amazing and challenging class, leaving me feeling spent.

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5:00 PM— Dance class ends. RUN [literally] back to the Catholic Center for a 5:00 meeting.

5:10 PM— Inhale a granola bar before walking into the meeting a sweaty, smelly mess.

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5:50 PM— Meeting ends. Eat a peach that I snagged from the dining hall earlier.

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6:00 PM— Go to another meeting. My lovely friend brings snacks (thank the Lord).

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this x50 (not a hyperbole)

7:45 PM— Go to dinner with my friend. Salad, pork with mango salsa, oatmeal raisin cookie a la mode, and a bite of my friend’s chocolate fondue, because the dining hall had FONDUE!!!

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8:30 PM— Walk back to my dorm. Showerrrrrr.

9:00 PM— Sit down to do work. Get semi-distracted talking to Rachel. Try to do more work. Give my roommate a massage. Mentally give up. Get ready for bed sometime in there. Pray.

12:35 AM— Hit. that. hay.

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Phew. I was aware that I was eating kind-of-a-lot-of sugar, but heck, my body needed it.

Happy Friday, everyone! Hope you have a fun weekend 🙂

So tell me:

Is it jean weather yet for you?

Are your days short, average, or long recently?

What do you like to dip in fondue?

What are you doing this weekend? Today: class and catching up on work. Tomorrow: touring, jazz fest, celebrating a friend’s birthday, and a movie night! Sunday: choir, Mass, studying, laundry, and dinner with family friends.

Owning It

Three pieces of “news” for you:

1) I finished a Costco-sized jar of peanut butter [almost] all by myself in less than a month.

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finished it off with some [cooled] microwave oats

2) I’m currently eating with chopsticks in the dining hall because Asians are not really a minority at BU, and this dining hall has responded to that.

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3) THIS Buzzfeed post about socially awkward introverts hits home like no other.

Do you think trying and crying rhyme because of me?

Now, if you know me in person, you might not immediately call me an introvert. I love talking to people and I even enjoy public speaking. That being said, it takes a great deal of energy for me to be social, and I’m usually quite content eating a meal by myself. (Not just because I was temporarily mortified after last year’s salad explosion.)

In addition to liking my “me time,” my introverted-ness is evident in my straight up AWKWARDNESS around people.

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Sometimes, making good eye contact while talking with someone one-on-one is harder than looking into the sun.

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When I contribute to a group conversation, I often doubt myself and make my voice progressively quieter and more high-pitched. And then I laugh like a teenage witch.

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Sometimes I’m tempted to give up on saying hi to people in large groups.

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Keeping up with conversation without falling into boring small talk can result in me making many sentences and gestures that make no sense at all.

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But I’ve realized a few things:

a) If I let the awkward things come and go and pretend that I don’t feel my soul isn’t shriveling into itself, the awkwardness usually subsides more quickly.

b) The only way people can laugh WITH you is if you laugh at yourself.

c) Confidence really is the best thing you can wear.

d) Nobody cares that much about what I do or say. No one judges me harder than I judge myself.

e) I’m not alone in all this.

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So that time I nearly smash my butt slipping down the stairs behind a girl I don’t know…

…or that time I didn’t know what to say at the end of a group prayer except, “and… thank you.”…

…or those multiple times when my brain and mouth do not collaborate properly, and. I. just. talklikethisbecausemywords.don’t.work…

I’m just gonna own it. 


In other news, I’m going to the gynecologist again early this morning. I think we’ll be going over test results from last week and possibly doing some other tests. Thank you all again for your support and prayers!

And here are some eats from this week. I’ve been more a three square meals kinda gal lately with class scheduling and such. Therefore, each meal is pretty epic.
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oatmeal with honey, cinnamon, banana, and peanut butter + eggs and turkey bacon

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salad with feta and honey mustard dressing + chicken and rice

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salad with tuna and couscous + chicken and sweet potatoes

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fish cake with corn + salad + turkey burger with feta

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vegan pumpkin bread a la mode

Yo gurl can EAT.

Hope you all have a fabulous Friday and a great weekend ahead!

So tell me:

Any awkward antics?

Any recent embarrassing stories you’re willing to share?

What is the best thing you ate this week?  Definitely the pumpkin bread a la mode for me!

The Great and Small Things I Learned {Freshman Semester II}

First semester of my freshman year in college came and went…

…second semester came and went…

…and that’s it. But what the heck!? How?

When I was leaving my dorm room for the last time on Friday, I ran into a guy who was in my group from FYSOP— the outreach program I did for my very first week at Boston University. We would say hi to each other on the streets or in the halls throughout the year whenever we saw each other, but this time, we were saying bye because we’re done with freshman year. I felt like we just met at FYSOP.

I guess that anecdote just sums up how weird it feels to be done with freshman year. But just as I learned a lot from my first semester, I learned plenty of great and small things from my second semester.

The Great and Small Things I Learned This Semester II

1. I am the slowest paper writer ever. It takes me an hour per page, at least.

2. People will judge me for my eating choices, but “you do you, I do me, we be civil.” (<— quoting my friend Charli)Processed with VSCOcam with c1 presetLike when I whip out my jar of pb and bring an overly brown banana to the dining hall

3. This.

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4. So many women and men who are close to you struggle with eating disorders. Be kind and gentle, and make resources known.

5. Anatomy and organic chemistry (as basic as those classes were in the grand scheme of things) taught me that the human body is ridiculously beautiful. God is quite the Architect.

6. That being said, anatomy and chem lab suck the life out of me.

7. How to ask other people to go on {friendly} lunch/dinner dates, as opposed to waiting to be asked.

8. Boston doesn’t play around when it comes to winter (*cough* 109 inches of snow).

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9. Sometimes it’s worth hanging out with your friends for just a leeeeetle bit longer before digging into the books.

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10. There is always time for prayer.

11. Just when I thought I couldn’t have a better roommate, she proves me wrong.

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12. I often need to remind myself to step out of my comfort zone.

13. When finals come around and I need to be the most focused, I don’t want to do ANYTHING AT ALL and then motivating myself to study is like climbing Mt. Everest.

14. A little extra friendliness with the faculty and staff will truly make the campus a better place.

15. A little extra friendliness with anyone will truly make the world a better place.

16. Always check your meal plan balance— you never know when you’ll find an extra $185 of dining points in your account.

17. Music is a big part of my stress relief.

18. I miss dance and yoga.

19. I actually do like bacon.

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20. How to be kinder and gentler, thanks to my very kind and gentle friends.

21. I have discovered the fun and motivation of a workout buddy.

22. Boston University food is better than Northeastern University food. Confirmed by the bro.

24. I’ll run, but only when I really feel like it.

25. Rachel and I can live for a week+ together without getting totally annoyed with each other 😉

 

26. The Boston Marathon energy is unreal and so inspiring!

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27. Make sure to check footwear before walking out the door.

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28. It’s okay to miss more workouts than usual.

29. I am not as punctual as I thought I was. #whoops

30. I curse more than I used to. #OhSh—Crap

31. How to take myself less seriously.

32. How to constantly strive for improvement with God’s help.

33. I have a family away from home, and it’s still growing!

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34. I’m a better person coming out of my freshman year of college, thanks to said family.

35. Bitter goodbyes will just make for the sweetest hellos.

A special thank you goes out to my real family (Madre, Pop, and Ben) for being supportive and loving throughout my whole college experience. I literally could not do this without you!

I hope you all have a fabulous Tuesday!

So tell me:

Three things you’ve learned in 2015 so far (or from college this year).

One thing you can continue to improve in yourself. 

The Great and Small Things I Learned {College Semester I}

Beautiful friends of the earth, HELLO!

I’m done with my first semester of college and my mind is blown. I am typing up this post from my cozy home in New York, and I could not be happier to be on winter break for a month(!) spending time with family and friends. I am, however, going to dearly miss my friends from BU!

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Finals are over, and I have concluded three things: I still despise statistics, I love psychology, and a good breakfast that involves peanut butter and banana makes any morning of a final exam better.

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Post-chemistry-final distress selfie

Mom picked up brother Ben and me from Boston yesterday, and I’m happy to report that our drive home was much swifter than our drive back home for Thanksgiving break. I drove most of the way home, and we were cruisin’ right along. Thank God!

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My last Boston meal for the semester was grilled lemongrass chicken with rice and veggies from a delicious Vietnamese takeout place. Hit the spot.

The Great and Small Things I Learned This Semester

Needless to say, college teaches you things. Of course you obtain your book smarts and knowledge of this awesome universe in which we live, but some of the most valuable things are learned by just living life away from home and getting out of that sweet comfort zone. So without further ado, here are some of the great and small things I’m taking away from my first semester at Boston University!

(P.S. I’m typing this list while listening to OneRepublic’s song, I Lived. It’s awesome inspiration music.)

  1. Holding doors for other people and having the door held for you is an easy way to make you smile.
  2. It’s not the end of the world if you don’t have plans on a Friday or Saturday night. In fact, it’s often preferable.
  3. The fruit crisps are the best desserts in the dining halls (a la mode, of course). Processed with VSCOcam with m5 preset
  4. The communal bathrooms will get gross, but you live through it.
  5. I still don’t know the names of all the guys on my floor (is that a good thing?).
  6. I have the best roommate!
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  7. Dorm workouts can make you as sweaty as a gym workout. Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset
  8. But nothing beats an outdoor workout by the river. Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset
  9. And running is oooooookayyyy…I guess. 😉Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset
  10. 10 AM classes are ideal. Not too early, not too late.
  11. Always snag bananas from the dining hall. You can never have too many bananas.
  12. “Room keys, ID card, room keys, ID card, room keys, ID card, PHONE!” <— an important thing that needs to run through my mind whenever I leave the room.
  13. It is possible to make best friends in just three months.bu friends
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  15. Hugging gets you through the day/week/life.
  16. Statistics is poopy.
  17. So many of my problems in the past were a result of a negative outlook and a “woe is me” attitude. Mentality is incredibly powerful.
  18. You will observe weird people, and you will also be the observed weird person. Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset
  19. I am a messy, klutzy person. Exhibit A // Exhibit B.
  20. Pedestrians RULE Boston. Sorry, drivers.
  21. The dorm walls are thinner than you think. Beware.
  22. How to cook steak…sort of.
  23. You will probably eat more sugar than you should, but life goes on and things will balance.picstitch
  24. There will always be cookies. Everywhere.
  25. Lunch and dinner dates are a thing and I kind of love them.Processed with Moldiv
  26. You will end up wasting more time than you wanted, but if you have the drive, you will find the time to get work done.
  27. Sleep is uhhhhhmaaaazinggggg.
  28. You walk so much in college. To go to class, to go to the gym, to get to a study place, to get your food…
  29. The funk in my dorm hallway slowly but surely gets worse every day (it’s honestly only the boys’ side). It was getting to near toxic levels when I left.
  30. Selfies are a way of life (see huge collage under #13).
  31. My blogger friends and readers are so wonderful and supportive.
  32. Speaking of wonderful…It’s good to say words such as wonderful, beautiful, and awesome to people, especially when you genuinely mean it.
  33. Humans are resilient like WHOA. We go through a lot.
  34. This semester has been one of the happiest times in my life.
  35. My faith has grown more this semester than it has in my entire life.10604424_10204140246360943_6812184516786650349_o

There are at least fifty other things I learned in addition to these, and I’ll probably think of them as soon as I hit publish, but here’s what I have for now!

It’s been so fun. There’s literally nothing I can say or do except to thank God for His abundant blessings. I pray that I can be fruitful with His gifts by spreading joy and service to others.

To whom much is given, much will be expected.

Have a fabulous day, friends! Good luck to all those finishing finals and traveling home! ♥

Thinking-Out-Loud

Thinking out loud with my favorite!

So tell me:

Three things you’ve learned in the past 3 months/6 months/year!

When was the last time you experienced profound mental, emotional, or spiritual growth?

What are you doing today?!

I’ll be baking, visiting my high school, and hopefully meeting up with some friends!