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

My legs are ombre.

They’re pale on top, medium-shade at the knee, and dark at the bottom. And then I have a sexy ankle sock tan. #aeriereal

Besides my tan lines signaling the start of summer, the end of spring semester also signals the bittersweet time when everyone in college parts and goes their separate ways for a few months (or longer if you’re a senior or if you’re studying abroad like I am).

I am so grateful to be spending this week in Boston with my friends without any studying required of us. Rachel and I have checked off a few food bucket list places, the sun has been shining, and I’ve been SLEEPING. Oh, sweet sleep.

On Monday, Rachel and I walked over to Jugos in the morning for acai bowls (from our bucket list). I felt so Californian and trendy.

IMG_1025

growing their own wheatgrass of course

IMG_1027

“Sao Paolo” for Rachel + “Los Verdes” for me

In my hipster-wannabe pride, it pains me to say that acai bowls do indeed live up to the hype. They were fantastic. BUT I do feel like I could make them at home. They’re pricey, but we were very full for a while after these, and it was lovely to have something so fresh.

We enjoyed a leisurely walk back to campus since it was such a gorgeous day and it wasn’t like we had any studying to do (!!!).

IMG_1030 IMG_1034

Monday night involved going to a fancy playground with friends, ungodly amounts of white cheddar popcorn, chocolate pudding eaten with a plastic knife, and Psych.

Solid.

IMG_1035

IMG_1040

Tuesday included another bucket list place— Emack & Bolio’s for their cereal cone (basically a rice krispie treat wrapped around the cone). The cereal cone was a cool concept, but Rachel and I agreed that the ice cream was just average. But it was still ice cream, which is delicious, and I thought the cone was good!

IMG_1052

“beantown crunch” with a cocoa pebbles cereal cone for Rachel + maple walnut with a rice krispie cereal cone for me

Followed by hours of girl talk.

Yesterday I helped my brother move out of his apartment, ate lunch with him and my mom, played outside for a bit (perfect weather), and helped cook a dinner at the Catholic Center for the graduating seniors (and they let me join in on the feast!).
IMG_1068

Grateful.

As with all my previous semesters here (I, II, III) at college, I have learned many lessons— some beautiful, some painful, all gifts.

the great and small

Lunch dessert is fabulous.

IMG_0529

I don’t have to go to the gym most days of the week, and I’ll be okay. I can still stay active and do challenging things without a gym.

Working out with friends outside might be one of my favorite things.

IMG_0577

We cannot attach ourselves to people. We can only attach ourselves to God. (via my friend Rachel via our friend Sarah)

Pride is probably my biggest vice and the root of all my internal struggles.

Social media can be pretty toxic for me. I need to take regular breaks from it.

I am an abstainer, not a moderator.

I don’t need to eat as much protein as I thought, and I feel best with a more carb-heavy diet.

IMG_0694

I cannot be complacent with my faith. I need to address my doubts, as little as they may be, and actively seek truth. (appreciate Julia’s honesty on this topic)

It is so painful to see good friends move away, but God has a beautiful plan for each of us and we need to trust Him.

IMG_0745

Walking is such an amazing human mechanism (thanks, biomechanics!).

I hold a lot of tension in my head and neck when I dance.

Electroswing music is a thing, and it. is. ART. (shoutout to my girl Lauren for introducing me to it)

I like plain yogurt better than cottage cheese these days.

IMG_0704

I can track my calories/macros objectively without restricting.

I am definitely an emotional eater.

Boston weather is more mercurial than Donald Trump’s words.

Writing at least one thing for which I am thankful in my planner every day before going to bed was a game-changer for my perspective.

Going without makeup for a while ain’t so bad.

I am at a pretty good place regarding my body image, but I am not immune to hard times and temptations to restrict.

My best friend and I have the same brain sometimes, and it’s freaking weird.

IMG_0280

It is improbable that we’ve had the friends, experiences, and circumstances that we’ve had.

God can show you very clearly that He is near. Sometimes He won’t make it clear though, but that doesn’t mean He’s not near.

Talking out loud to myself is the best form of studying for me. I need to hear it said.

I should be aware of my face in lecture, or else the professor might call me out with a laser pointer in front of my classmates.

I embarrass my friends sometimes/often/always.

IMG_0539

I need to make sure I bring enough snacks to work.

My friends are like my personal trainers, except spiritually. They push me outside of my comfort zone to become a better human.

Cycling is HARD.

VO2max test equipment is really flattering.

IMG_0573

I’m over trying so hard to impress boys. OVER IT.

^^^I will tell myself that I am over it, but still fall into that trap. C’est la vie.

It’s okay if I don’t have all the answers/advice for someone. Being a good listener can be what exactly someone needs.

Tori Kelly continues to slay with her music that describes my life.

Tears are truly a gift from the Holy Spirit.

God continues to show how much He loves us, and it is the most beautiful, amazing, heart-wrenching, humbling thing ever.


I’m linking up with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud today! I’ve missed this party!

Thinking-Out-Loud

Hope you all have an awesome Thursday ♥︎

So tell me:

If you are a college student: Lesson(s) you learned this semester/year.

If you are not a college student: Lesson(s) you learned since the beginning of 2016.

Have you ever tried/do you like acai bowls? 

Day in the Life of a Second Semester Sophomore

WHAT-I-ATE-WEDNESDAY-NEW-BUTTON-PEAS-AND-CRAYONS

A Tuesday in the life of a second semester college sophomore…

8:10 AM // First alarm goes off. Shut it.

8:15 AM // Second alarm goes off. Snooze.

8:25 AM // Third alarm goes off. Roll out of bed. {Should not have spent useless minutes scrolling Insta so late the night before.Bathroom, brush teeth, put in contacts, etc.

8:35 AM // Morning prayer.

8:40 AM // Change into athletic clothes, just for the morning while I’m still studying (I try to wear real pants as little as possible).

IMG_0049

8:50 AM // Head across the street to the dining hall for breakfast! Work on my nutrition project while eating.

IMG_0075

hard boiled egg (with sriracha) + whole wheat toast with pb and banana + frozen blueberries

IMG_0076

9:40 AM // Go back to my dorm building and read biomechanics in the study room.

IMG_0077

10:20 AM // Head back up to my room for some foam rolling and a 30-minute yoga video.

IMG_0078

IMG_0079

11:00 AM // Change into real people clothes, tweeze my brows, and put on makeup.

11:20 AM // Film this week’s “Five Minute Friday’s” vlog and re-watch it. It’s over five minutes, dang it.

11:35 AM // Leave the room and walk to another dining hall for lunch with Rachel and Kelsey!

IMG_0080

salad with beets, peppers, and some sort of marinated potatoes + grilled chicken with eggplant relish, sautéed collards, and couscous

IMG_0081

plus an orange!

12:30 PM // Nutrition lecture. We learn about the basics of digestion, which isn’t the most exciting, but the professor is still awesome.

IMG_0082

1:20 PM // Get out of lecture early! Walk outside to the river for some fresh air since I have 30 minutes to kill before my next class. Re-film my vlog to see if I can get it under 5 minutes (spoiler: didn’t succeed).

IMG_0083

THIS WEATHER!!!

2:00 PM // Behavioral biology of women lecture. Such a fascinating course! Eat a snack before the lecture starts.

IMG_0084

half pb sandwich packed into napkins during lunch #resources

3:30 PM // Walk to the Catholic Center for a meeting.

4:10 PM // Send some messages to people and study exercise physiology (gotta keep on top of that) in the CC study room.

5:00 PM // Attend daily Mass in the upstairs chapel.

5:40 PM // Descend into the basement for the beloved free Tuesday pasta dinner! Have a grand ol’ time catching up with friends.

IMG_0085

6:45 PM // Start setting up for our weekly “Catholics on Campus” talk.

7:00 PM // Kick off the talk. Last night, one of the most hilarious nuns I’ve ever met came to talk to us about Catholic Church history. She transformed a history lesson into something that had my abs and cheek muscles hurtin’!

8:15 PM // Help clean up after the talk and walk back to my dorm. Eat a peanut butter oatmeal chocolate chip cookie (compliments of my Aunt Sharon from Christmas!).

IMG_0086

desperately need to do something about my nails/cuticles

8:45 PM // Shower, make appointments, write out my to-do list for Wednesday, brush teeth, chat with suite mates for a bit.

9:50 PM // Go up to the study room to take my online exercise physiology quiz.

IMG_0087

10:20 PM // Finish the (easy) quiz and curse myself out for getting one question wrong because the directions said “place in order from low to high glycemic load” and I put them in order from high to low. I deserved that.

10:30 PM // Start typing this blog post!

11:20 PM // Finish up the post, head back to my room, pray.

11:45 PM // Hit the hay. Feeling ever so slightly hungry, but I already brushed my teeth and I’m lazy. I DO THIS EVERY NIGHT UGH (9/10 times I just eat and brush again).


Every day is so different, but this is the gist of life right now. Some days I’m ultra productive, and other days I let myself get a little too distracted with friends/social media. Some days, it’s a nice balance of both. I like to think it’s “mental health”.

I’m having fun though! I’m feeling more comfortable with tackling the work in each of my courses, and I’ve been blessed to encounter so many people from whom I can draw inspiration and motivation. Including you guys!!

Some new Tori Kelly therapy for you all today:

Hope you all have a lovely Wednesday!

So tell me:

Do you have on and off days in terms of productivity?

What was the best thing you ate yesterday? The chicken with eggplant relish and couscous was pretty darn delicious!

A silly mistake you’ve recently made. (← for my own selfish, empathy-seeking purposes. 😀 ♥︎)

Day in the Life of a Second Semester Freshman

Hooray for day in the life posts! These are my absolute favorite posts to read, and luckily, they’re just as fun to write. Here’s what went down in the life (and noggin) of Alison yesterday:

6:15 AM— First alarm // “No.”

6:20 AM— Second alarm // *grooooooan* // check phone

6:25 AM— Out of bed, bathroom, change

6:35 AM— Eat a banana and some trail mix, pray, finish getting my stuff together for the gym

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

{recycled photo}

6:55 AM— Trek it over to FitRec across campus

7:15 AM— Move and groove // Dirty Burpee Workout

7:50 AM— Walk back to the dorm // “So sweaty under this sweatshirt and heavy jacket, but it’s too cold to take them off ahhhh.”

8:10 AM— Shower and gather up my stuff for the day

8:40 AM— Breakfast, plus some reading and essay planning

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

oatmeal with honey, shredded coconut, peanut butter, and banana + scrambled eggs doused in black pepper after this photo was taken

Processed with VSCOcam with m3 preset

9:30 AM— Discuss, listen, and learn in class // “I always need to pee every half hour after I work out.”

12:30 PM— Drop off a bag of donations for a clothing drive

1:00 PM— Lunch and blog reading

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

salad with Greek dressing + roast beef, provolone cheese, and honey mustard sandwich on wheat

1:30 PM— Stop by my dorm room to exchange books in my backpack and start typing this post

1:50 PM— Go to the children’s library in the School of Education and to read picture books (they are sources for my writing course called Aesthetic Constructions of Childhood, aka a writing course about picture books 🙂 )

3:00 PM— Organic chemistry discussion class

4:00 PM— Walk to a place with a nice view to do homework // “Who knew picture books would consume two and a half hours of a single day?”

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset dayinlife5

4:50 PM— Snack on some Snap Pea Crisps and take a #basic sunset picture

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

dayinlife7

6:45 PM— Dinner! // “One of the best dining hall dinners I’ve had in a while!”

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

turkey souvlaki pita + curry chicken

7:15 PM— Walk over to the Catholic Center to hear a talk about exorcism and deliverance // “This is so intense and now I want to bless ALL the things with Holy Water.” // But really, it was more fascinating and informational than freaky, promise.

9:00 PM— Back at the dorm for the night // Eat frozen banana and peanut butter

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

9:15 PM— Emails, housekeeping stuff, finish up some homework, type this

10:40 PM— Get ready for bed because tomorrow (today) is another long day!

Hope you all have a fabulous day! You are awesome. BE NOT AFRAID.

WHAT-I-ATE-WEDNESDAY-NEW-BUTTON-PEAS-AND-CRAYONS

Joining Jenn’s jolly linkup!

So tell me:

Three random things you did yesterday…

Two things you ate…

And one way you moved and grooved!

Seven Things {+ I’m Going to Blend 2015!}

I’ve missed you!!!

Whether the feeling is mutual or not, I am sending you all e-hugs right now. It’s only been 5 days since I last blogged, but considering I had been blogging almost daily during my winter break, those 5 days felt like an eternity.

Now that we’ve e-hugged I’ve assaulted you with e-hugs, here are seven things that sum up my first week of second semester!

1) Lots of studying calls for ice cream.

When I realized how much studying will be required for anatomy and organic chemistry this semester, I made sure to decompress my brain with some delicious ice cream this weekend.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

Dairy therapy.

2) Snow!

We had our first snowfall of the semester on Saturday, and it was a cute prelude to the snowmageddon that’s supposed to hit the northeast tonight (stay safe and warm, friends!).

Processed with VSCOcam with b1 preset

My roommate just informed me that a Boston University snow brawl is scheduled for Tuesday. DOWN.

3) Workout buddies make me happy.

I had three different workout buddies last week! Even if we’re not doing the same workout, the presence of another hard-working, sweaty pal definitely pushes me to work harder in the gym. Enough to make my hair look like it belongs in a forest/cage.

Processed with VSCOcam with m3 preset

4) Morning workouts are quite enjoyable.

Now I see why healthy living bloggers are all about those AM endorphins! It feels great to wake up before the big rush of students and to get moving before sitting in class all day.

I will try to get up for morning workouts as often as my body and brain allow!

5) Sandwiches are my go-to.

There is an art to making a good sandwich, and although I appreciate every person who makes me a sandwich, there are certainly some people who know how to make better sandwiches. It’s all in the distribution of the ingredients.

sandwiches

Sandwich on the far right: You can see the empty bread space where there is no meat/veggies.

Sandwich in the middle: Perfectly distributed ingredients and cut diagonally.

Ya feel? (So petty, I know.)

Roast beef with cheese, lettuce, tomato, and honey mustard is my favorite combination, but tuna salad makes an occasional appearance on Fridays!

6) I ♥ carbs.

My friend jokes around and says that I never eat any carbs, but that is a million miles from the truth. For instance, on Saturday I had tour guide training all day, during which they served us muffins, bagels, and pizza. I had all three, thankyouverymuch.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

#carbloadingforthewinter

7) National Peanut Butter Day was celebrated ALL weekend.

Scratch that. National peanut butter day is celebrated all year round for me.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset Processed with VSCOcam with t1 preset

Laughing because Albert decided to get a whole bowl full of peanut butter. Only four times more than we needed.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

*sigh* What a great holiday.

OH, BONUS TIDBIT: I’m going on the Blend 2015 Retreat! If you’re unfamiliar with what that is, Blend is a three day blogger/reader retreat (in Boulder, Colorado this year!) where you get to hang out, eat, move, and groove with fellow blog friends (“blends”). This will be my first time attending Blend, and I am STOKED.

Come so I can meet all of you!!!

So tell me:

Are you going to be hit by snow?

Thoughts on the art of the sandwich?

Do you prefer morning workouts?

Did you celebrate National Peanut Butter Day?

Are you going to Blend!?

I Eat With Gusto

Hello from Beantown!

And happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day to my American friends! Fun fact: he received his PhD at Boston University, hollaaaa. In honor of such a courageous and exemplary man, here are some of my favorite quotes of his:

We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.

I have decided to stick to love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.

In the End, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.

Means we use must be as pure as the ends we seek.

We must use time creatively.

Thank you, MLK Jr. ♥

Friday

My train commute to Boston was smooth and swift, thanks be to God. Mom even packed me a bag full of pomegranate arils because she is sweeter than the pomegranate itself.

IMG_3253

complete with a plastic spoon

Ben was also kind enough to help me take my bags from the train station to my dorm since I’m a chronic over-packer and had about twice the bag/weight limit. I took him out to lunch afterwards at one of our favorite spots— Mei Mei’s!

Processed with VSCOcam with b1 preset

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

We both ordered “The Double Awesome” scallion pancake sandwich (Mei Mei’s special), which has local greens pesto, Vermont white cheddar, and two oozy eggs. Sounds like heaven, tastes like heaven. Ben also shared a bite of his fried pork dumplings and sriracha rice with me. Mmmm.

  Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

That orange is not cheese. It’s yolky deliciousness that I got on my face, on my sweater, and in my hair. It’s all or nothing with this kind of food. Ben and I were sitting at the window barstools, so the world could see us grappling with our sandwiches and fighting to catch every drop of egg yolk.

Ben wants to try to make this at home, but he said, “I need to perfect the art of the egg. Like, how do you make it watery?”

Me: “You mean…runny?”

Ben: “…yeah.”

Silly dude.

So, uh, college life. I do love it, but I was living off of naked salad and yogurt for the first couple of days when the dining halls were still closed. I went to Whole Foods and picked up a small box of spring mix with herbs and five Fage Greek yogurt cups that were on sale.

Behold, dinner.

Processed with VSCOcam with g3 preset Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

I ate the salad with just salt and pepper because I didn’t want to spend money on dressing for just two days. It tasted…green. But honestly, these are some of my favorite foods anyway, so I’m not complaining. Protein, greens, and peanut butter. Got my food groups covered.

Saturday

Moves to start the day: 100 burpee challenge!

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

Breakfast involved yogurt and oats a la microwave.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

How a proper lady would eat this: one bowl at a time.

How I eat this: dip my spoon back and forth between bowls to get some yogurt and some oats in every bite and licking my spoon clean of all the nut butter.

I worked for most of Saturday and ate more of my greens for lunch, plus two Wasa crackers with Laughing Cow cheese, curry powder, and black pepper. You need to try that combination!

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

I quite enthusiastically ate handfuls of pomegranate arils immediately after work because crackers and leaves aren’t a substantial lunch for me and I was hungryyyy. Then I came back to my dorm and ate yogurt #2 of the day.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

Afterwards, I braved the cold and jogged to the gym for an upper body workout. When I jogged back, expecting to eat dinner in the dining hall, I was greeted with disappointment. Dinner was only from 5-7 pm Saturday night instead of the usual 5-9 pm.

To Subway I went!

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

grilled chicken, pepper jack cheese, lettuce, tomato, and honey mustard on wheat

Subway is so good. I followed this up with the rest of my greens, snap pea crisps, and yogurt cup #3.

I was FaceTiming with mom when I was eating dinner, and she remarked at my large mouthfuls of salad. It’s true— I can’t eat salad in a pretty manner. You either eat one leaf at a time or you look like a brontosaurus. I prefer the latter so that I can actually taste the salad.

Don’t get me wrong, I like to take my time when I eat, and I can eat like I’m with the Queen of England if I wanted. But sometimes (most of the time) I just eat with gusto.

Sunday

The dining hall was open all day yesterday, so I definitely hit that up for breakfast!

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

oatmeal with coconut, honey, peanut butter, and banana + egg white, veg, cheese omelet

Fill.ing.

I went to Mass at the Catholic center and had a hug fest with all my dear friends again. Ugh, so happy. Then a couple of my friends and I made our wallets cry when we went to buy/rent books for classes. At least you get a reusable bag when you spend over $400.

I ate a super late lunch of veggies and chicken, and little later, moves were done with my pal Albert! We did abs and ran two miles on the treadmill.

Dinner was weird because I had a late lunch, but I wanted to eat before the dining halls closed. That being said, it was tasty!

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

salad + whole wheat corn muffin + pear

I saved the pear for later because I wanted my fruit in another form…

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

apple crisp a la mode!!!

The crust was buttery, sugary perfection. Oh, what BU dining hall desserts do to me.

We have today off for MLK Jr. day so this is my last day before we dive into the real work. If you also have a day off today, have a great one! If you don’t, still have a great one!

So tell me: 

Are you an enthusiastic eater?

I can buy three things from the grocery store to eat for the weekend. I buy___, ____, and ____.