Gratitude Wins, As Always

Random thought for your Monday morning: I really love the ice cubes in the dining halls.

They’re actually more like mini ice logs, but they’re kind of…light and airy? It’s so easy to chew them, and it kind feels like a snow cone texture when you do.

Hooray for really COOL [sorry] ice!

Now that I’ve celebrated that simple joy in life, let’s talk about how Friday morning sucked any kind of joy out of me.

Friday morning: Cloudy, damp, dreary, early. I walked approximately half an hour to my gynecology appointment with hopes of hearing results after the lab work from the previous Friday. That is, the lab work that I was supposed to have done two Fridays ago. The lab work that I (the worst “grownup” ever) didn’t actually complete because I didn’t realize that I had to go into a separate room after my appointment to get blood drawn.

Doc: “For some reason, the system has no indication of any lab work. Do you remember if you go that done?”

Me: “…Um, I don’t know. Actually, maybe I didn’t…”

Doc: “Did you get blood drawn?”

Me: “…No.”

Doc: “Oh okay, that was the lab work.”

Me: “Agh, I’m so sorry. She did say to go get lab work done after the appointment, but I guess I was just kinda confused and didn’t actually do that.”

What was actually going on in my brain: WTF, ALISON!?!?!?!?! 

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[source]

The super sweet gynecologist apologized for the inconvenience of me coming there for basically nothing. I apologized for being a dimwit, essentially. I then got my blood drawn like I was supposed to do the week before, and then I walked back home. The next earliest appointment they had for me is two months from now, so I must wait some more.

I was frustrated. Embarrassed. I felt so stupid. I cried.

I could have gotten answers by now. I could have gotten this out of the way sooner. I could have been smarter. I could have…

…wait, Alison.

I could be grateful. For quality healthcare. For being able to walk to my appointment. For such kind and compassionate gynecologists. For family and friends who are praying for me. For the new day of life that God granted to me.

Life ain’t so bad. This will all work itself out in due time.

Thank you to all of you who have supported and loved me through all of this. You know who you are.


The theme of gratitude only magnified as the weekend went on.

On Friday night, I had a long dinner with my friends, followed by a beautiful Mass in the North End with more friends.

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this was actually my lunch, but I’m grateful for corn bread

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Saturday morning came quickly with an early morning wake-up call for service! Some people from the Catholic Center spent the morning volunteering at the Red Cross Food Pantry, where there was nothing BUT gratitude. The people who work there are living saints, and the people whom we were serving are examples of grace and joy.

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Saturday night involved burritos— always a reason to be grateful.

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Oh, and the people who were eating the burritos with me—grateful for them too. Sophomore bonding night!

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Saturday night ended with girl talk with Rachel. Sunday morning started with breakfast also with Rachel. Ugh, it’s like we’re best friends or something. She’s everywhere!

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Lunch dessert was pretty bomb too.

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berry crisp a la mode

Lastly, Rachel and I have decided that we’re making this our BU bucket list: “50 Things to Eat in Boston Before You Die.”

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IT’S HAPPENING.

I’m grateful for a rejuvenating yet productive weekend. I’m grateful for YOU.

O Lord God: Thank you. Forgive me. Help me more.

Here we are at Monday! Hoping you find simple joys like really awesome ice cubes.

P.S. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MOMMA! ♥ ♥ ♥ I love you lots.

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So tell me:

What did you do this weekend?

Have you ever messed up on something that made you feel really dumb? 

Crushed or cubed ice? Crushed! Or mini logs!

Ups and Downs of My First Week Back in Boston

Remember that cocktail of emotions that I was feeling right before leaving for Boston?

Well it has heightened, for better and for worse. I am filled with so much gratitude and joy seeing my friends and preparing for another year of learning, but for a few days I was also losing sleep over emotions like excitement, nervousness, anxiety, and fear. I know that’s normal for starting a new year of school, but it’s oddly intense. And I’m not even a freshman!

At first, I was just so excited to see everyone that I had to sorta numb my feelings or else I might have exploded with joy.

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But for whatever reason, I was going through a phase where my sympathetic nervous system was just ON. My heart was beating uncomfortably quickly for a few days for no good reason, my stomach felt tight, and I was breathing from my chest more than from my belly (a sign that my body is stressed).

I didn’t know what was up, but prayer, movement, music, being with good friends, and big deeeeeep belly breaths from my diaphragm all helped. Also, I’m thinking back to my own tips on how I deal with anxious feelings.

(Talk about a way to make my parents feel GREAT.)

The real medicine this time around, however, was letting go of hypersensitivity to what others thought of me. I have no idea why, but I became so preoccupied with trying to impress people (who I know and love from last year). However, as soon as I remembered that I have one person— God— in my audience, I started feeling better.

In the words of Tori Kelly: “Take it or leave it, babe, I’m not gonna change. If you don’t understand I don’t need you anyway.” <— please listen.

Now that that’s off my chest. Hello, lovely folks ♥

Despite my very minor heart palpitations, this weekend was pretty darn awesome.

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dorm breakfast feat. the breakfast trifecta

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bodyweight exercises in the great outdoors of Boston

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dorm snacks

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monster chicken, tomato, lettuce, avocado, sundried tomato, pesto pita wrap = lunch and dinner

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some steep ($5…) pistachio and nocciola gelato for the Feast of St. Anthony celebration in North End

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first dining hall meal! classic breakfast that I scarfed down because I had attend a meeting

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first dining hall dessert! they did not fail with this delicious carrot cake

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second dining hall dessert the night after — vegan apple cider oatmeal cookie mousse parfait — pretty luxurious and delicious

Lots of food. Some humans were involved too.

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It was also a productive weekend, getting lots of tasks done before classes actually start.

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including getting a head start on human physiology reading #nerd#geek#lame#sayittomyface

I genuinely hope each of you is doing well and that you have a wonderful week ahead! Today is my last Monday off before the grind begins woooooo.

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”
— James 1:2-4

So tell me:

Do you ever find yourself breathing from your chest more than usual?

Do you ever feel unusually sensitive to how others might perceive you?

What is your favorite kind of cake? Carrot cake all the way (WITH raisins).

What did you do this weekend? 

Trying New Things…Like Horror Movies

Hello hello!

{“I don’t know why you say goodbye, I say hello!”}

That’s a Beatles song, right? If not, I’m embarrassed…as I often am.

On the topic of embarrassment, I went with maybe 20 of my Catholic friends to go see the horror movie on Friday night about a possessed doll, Anabelle. It was against my better judgement, but I covered my eyes with my jacket for approximately 75% of the movie. And I was still terrified. Heck, I was terrified by the previews! Because you see, my level of movie fear starts at The Little Mermaid, okay? Ursula is no joke.

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Luckily, a few of my friends were on the same boat as me, so we covered our faces in fear together. Comically commentating a horror movie is also a good way of getting through it (thanks, Adrienne).

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Before the movie started, hence our smiles.

In happier news, we got nachos and tacos beforehand! I was ravenous by the time we sat down to eat, so I restrained myself to a few nachos (which were pretty awesome) before completely demolishing my fish tacos + honey ale cornbread like a champ.

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Saturday involved some studying, a meeting, a workout, laundry and then more food and friends. We went to North End for dinner and desserts, and then I was semi-coerced into watching an episode of American Horror Story. I watched more horror things on Friday and Saturday than I had watched in the entire span of my life prior to that. My friends are so inspiring.

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I had gelato though, so all was okay.

Also, guess who I FaceTimed that night!

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What are you doing with your fingers?

DALIZA!!! I miss that honorary child of our Asian family.

In other news, the weather was glorious yesterday with not a cloud in the sky. I went to church, ate lunch with friends, studied, and did some more FaceTiming with my parents. I joined bro Ben for dinner and dessert before we had our virtual family reunion.

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Sushi, hot pot, and pumpkin (!!!) froyo with grape nuts (what are those even?), mochi, graham cracker crumbs, and Reese’s pieces

I like to think that ice cream and frozen yogurt are all-year-round desserts. Can I get an mhmm?

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I know Katie would agree with me 🙂 Linking up on her blog today!

Alrighty, I’m gonna sign off now so that I can either a) sleep, or b) squeeze in some more homework. Life choices…

I hope you all have a fabulous day!

So tell me:

Do you like horror movies?

One thing you did this weekend!

What are your favorite froyo toppings?