A Look Into My Interesting First Week of Second Semester

Thinking-Out-Loud

Thinking out loud today with my fave!

1) We’re almost done with our first {short} week of classes, and I’m pretty pumped up!

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It’s been exciting to reunite with friends, and my classes are equally as exciting. I’m taking intro to nutrition, behavioral biology of women, exercise physiology, biomechanics, and modern dance (again!). Geeking out!

2) There have been some less exciting things happening this week as well though. I (and a lot of my friends) came down with a cold, and I strained the back of knee somehow after my extra long day of physical activity on Sunday. The latter gave me a limp for a few days, but I think it’s on the mend… Except now there’s a huge knot in my mid back that kinda hurts when I breathe.

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^^^I’m really okay though.

3) Rachel and I got right back to work on our food bucket list on Monday. We chose Anna’s Taqueria for some burritos!

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My burrito: rice, chicken, grilled vegetables, lettuce, salsa, cheese and guacamole lovingly hugged together by a warm, whole wheat tortilla.

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Rachel and I agreed that these weren’t the most flavorful burritos we had ever eaten, but we were hungry and cold, so these totally hit the spot!

4) Although I miss cooking my own meals, I certainly cannot complain about the food here at Boston University.

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lighter breakfast of whole wheat toast with almond butter and banana, blueberries, and a hb egg

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part of a sick day lunch: tomato kale florentine soup + cornbread

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free pasta supper at the Catholic Center!

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salad + pork and rice with mango salsa

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plain yogurt with granola and banana

5) I ate three bananas yesterday.

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6) Speaking of food and classes… For my nutrition class, I will have to record a whole day of my typical eats for a project. This includes breaking down the calories, macronutrients, and micronutrients, and then we will analyze what we should add/subtract from our diets.

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I’m not really nervous about the project, but I’m definitely thankful that I’m taking this class now rather than earlier, when I may not have been as secure in my eating habits. Nevertheless, I will take all analyses with a grain of salt!

7) Scenario #1 from yesterday:

Girl at the gym: *points to the small bottle hanging off my backpack* “Is that antibacterial hand  stuff?”

Me: *embarrassed* “…Uhh no it’s hot sauce.”

Girl: “It IS Sriracha! I thought so. I was going to be so disappointed if it wasn’t.”

People get me sometimes.

8) Scenario #2 from yesterday:

*I’m walking down the street bundled up in the frigid cold while listening to music.*

*A middle-aged, white-haired man wearing a Big Bird costume (carrying the head part) walks past me. He looks frazzled and seems to be asking another student for directions. It all just looks like part of a montage as I listen to my music.*

*My jaw drops slightly.*

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Pretty sure this was my exact reaction.

9) To end on a meaningful note… There’s an ongoing service project that a few of my dear friends help organize every week called Back Bay Mobile Soup Kitchen. The participants make sandwiches and bring snacks, socks, blankets, gloves, and other clothing items around downtown Boston by foot to people who are homeless. I walked with them for the first time this past Sunday, and it was a humbling, upsetting, joyful, and inspiring experience all at once.

If you live near a fairly large city and are looking for a way to reach out personally, I think this is a simple yet effective service project. (Strength in numbers! Make sure to bring friends, both male and female.)

10) Hope you all have a marvelous day! Dance like Brad Pitt a little.

So tell me:

What were/are some of your favorite college/high school courses?

Has anything surreal happened to you recently (like my Big Bird encounter)?

What do you like in your burritos?

Do you have a favorite service project?

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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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!

Things I Miss From Home

The pre-vacation jitters are hitting!

In other words, I’m typing up this blog post with very little desire to get a head start on studying that I’ll need to do during the long weekend. I’ll get to that in a jiffy, not to worry.

The fact that I only had two classes yesterday and I only have two classes today contributes to my excitement for Thanksgiving break, but we’re all spending good times together here at Boston University before going home to celebrate with our families. The food is still on point here too.

I like breakfast, I guess.

Also, my friend Albert and I went on a mini adventure yesterday. We were planning on volunteering at a church in downtown Boston for a special Thanksgiving dinner service, but it turned out that they did not actually need our assistance/we needed to register ahead of time and we did not do so. Sooooo our efforts turned into an adventure of taking the T back and forth, walking around like lost tourists, and then coming back to campus hungry for dinner. It’s the thought that counts, right?

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This chicken parm sandwich on a whole wheat bun made us happy though!

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Walking around downtown Boston, seeing all the shops, and smelling delicious foods from the restaurants really made me miss New York. I am incredibly grateful for everything Boston has provided me, and I am definitely considering this my second home now, but I can’t help missing lots of things that are just home. 

Things I Miss From Home

It was memory lane to the max when I went through my media library looking for these photos. Got me swellin’ up with emotionzzzzzz.

Food

 zucchini bread

Baking

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OVERNIGHT OATS (in a jar preferably) OH MY GOODNESS GRACIOUS HOW I MISS THEM.

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Banana soft serve

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Smoothies in a bowl

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Greek yogurt

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Almond butter

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Green smoothies

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Cookie dough cereal

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Avocado toast

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Smoked salmon

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Hummus

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Any sort of salmon

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Mom’s cooking (she just sent me this photo last night and has some left for Ben and me when we get home!)

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Brussels sprouts roasted in coconut oil (scary flashback to when I made vlog of me making them by myself on Superbowl Sunday…)

People and Things Besides Food

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My family being all together at home (ironic because this photo was taken in Boston)

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DSLR camera. VSCO Cam has become my best friend these past few months, but I miss that big clicker of a machine.

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Dance company…

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…and dancing

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Fraaaaaands!

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Leisurely walks

Also, in an odd way, I miss hearing my mom’s Thai TV screaming in the background, seeing my dad on the computer, and driving.

This song is the definition of my feelings right now:

Praying that you all have safe, convenient travels and joyous reunions with your loved ones in these coming days!

So tell me:

What is one food that reminds you of home?

One weird thing that reminds you of home?

What did you eat for breakfast yesterday? 

Top 5

Good morning!

I’m typing this up as I sit in the dining hall for breakfast, as I sit in between classes, and whenever the heck I have a glimmer of free time. I hope you all had a splendid weekend! Mine was busy but stinkin’ awesome. {“Stinkin'”? Am I five?}

Moving along with the theme of five, I decided to choose the top five things that went down in the past week, because if I tried to tell you everything, you would never want to read this blog-turned-novel ever again. 😉

1) Service project with the Catholic center

On Saturday morning, I joined a group of people from the Catholic center for the first service project of the year. We took some brown-bagged meals and donated clothes with us into downtown Boston to give to any people we saw that are living with homelessness and/or hunger. It was a wonderful experience of sharing conversation and smiles with the people of Boston, as well as getting to do it with some awesome people!

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2) Celebrating my mom’s birthday with her in person and through FaceTime

Mom and Dad made a super quick day trip up to Boston on Saturday so that we could all celebrate Wonder Woman’s birthday! She wasn’t off duty though, because she still brought us some dorm/apartment necessities and helped us organize our rooms. 😀 Thanks, ma. Hope you had a wonderful birthday!

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Saturday dinner at a Cambodian restaurant and Sunday FaceTiming for her actual birthday!

3) Getting in some great laughs with my new friends

This sounds so cheesy and cliche but…for real. Whether it’s talking to friends in the dining hall for a couple hours, hanging out with them outside on a chilly night, or catching up on all the latest gossip (I know, ALREADY) in the dorms, they’ve blessed me with a lot of cheek and ab workouts from laughing so much.

4) Volunteering at a women’s shelter

I went to a women’s shelter in downtown Boston with a couple other girls in the BU Nutrition Club, and we spent a few hours on Monday evening preparing and serving food to battered women of that area in Boston. It was another great service opportunity and a wonderful way to meet more people whom I probably could not have encountered otherwise.

5) The Boston skyline at night

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Cotton candy skies

Time to head to my statistics discussion! (Exclamation point = trying so hard to be enthusiastic.)

I’m so sorry I haven’t been blogging as often, but I’m trying to study and soak up my time here at college as best I can while also telling you all about it! Hopefully I can have a “day in the life” post put up soon 🙂

Have a great day, friends!

P.S. check out my workouts from last week here.

So tell me:

YOUR top 5!

What was one of your favorite service/volunteer projects?

Behind the Scenes #31: First Week at Boston University

HELLO!!!

I’m going to be so cliché that it hurts right now, but I’ve missed you all so much!!! I feel like there are a million things I want to say and even more photos to dump on your faces, but I’ll try to hold my horses and tell you about my week in an organized fashion. Thus, I’m going to do this in a list format since lists are easier to manage and read.

Here are some of things and thoughts from my first week at college!

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Mooooooving in!

1) FYSOP was incredibleI mentioned in another post that I was not actually in classes last week (classes start tomorrow!), but I was participating in a First-Year Student Outreach Program (FYSOP). I was in the “Hunger” issue area, so we harvested fruits and veggies at a farm, helped sort and label things at a food bank, and prepared food at a soup kitchen. Throughout all the on-site volunteer work, lectures, and educational sessions, I’ve learned so much more about the Hunger issue than I could have imagined.

The best part of all was making great friends within my group. We were the “Morgan Free…Range Chickens.” Nothing short of amazing, I think.

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{Photo creds to Patrick}

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{Photo creds to Cassandra}

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{Photo creds to Grace}

2) The food is quite delicious here.

It’s very easy to find healthy options in the dining halls, and I love that Boston University is serious about sustainability and knowing where the food comes from. Come back on Wednesday to check out some of my eats at college! 🙂

P.S. I finally found the big bowl of both regular AND natural peanut butter in the dining hall today. My culinary life in college is complete.

3) After three days last week, I figured out the shower situation.

Showering in the dorms was making me a little anxious before I arrived, but I think I have a system of sorts that allows me to shower efficiently and travel in the hallways without flashing anyone (so far).

4) Homesickness is subsiding. 

The transition was definitely weird during the first few days of being in college alone, but after such a fantastic week with FYSOP, I’ve adjusted well. Mom and Dad have also been here for the past couple of days for Labor Day weekend, which surely helps too!

Now for when I need sanity and a shoulder to cry on during exam weeks….

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My dorm!

5) A spoonful of peanut butter is my best friend.

Not literally. I made friends, I swear! But when it comes to that midnight snack monster right before I hit the hay, I turn to my trustee peanut butter jar in the mini fridge to tame the beast.

{What the heck with that dramatic sentence?^^^}

6) The FitRec center is awesome!

Last Thursday, I stepped into the fitness and recreation center for the first time a little after we finished dinner, and I decided to just work out while I was already there and gross after being out all day. I don’t really give a darn about dudes at the gym, so I just went for the weight room.

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It was the first time I lifted weights in a longggggg time, and it was SO FUN. I did 5 minutes on the stair master and Jessie’s full body weights workout, which made me decently sore the next day and even more sore two days later. DOMS! I’m pumped to be able to go to such a great fitness center.

Other moves: 

  • WALKING EVERYWHERE.
  • Saturday: 3 min. on cross trainer (I was already pretty warm from walking a mile from my dorm to the FitRec!) + 10 shoulder tap pushups + 20 single arm DB swings + 8 min ab tabata + 3 rounds of 500m row and 10 burpees
  • Sunday: 2.8 mile run around the Charles River!

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I’m taking yoga as a credit class this semester, so I’m looking forward to that too!

7) The weather has been beautiful lately.

Boston, you’re gorgeous. Please be merciful this winter.

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8) I realize how much I value my alone time.

The first few days of FYSOP involved meeting tons of new people, socializing, chanting together, playing games, etc. All I wanted to do after long days of doing just that was sit in my room by myself, read blogs, and eat oatmeal. I skipped a Student Activities night last week in favor of organizing my room and listening to Tori Kelly in my dorm.

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Don’t get me wrong, I loveeee meeting new people and hanging out with my friends; I had a ridiculously fun time with them. However, my introversion calls me to just chill by myself sometimes. No open door, no texting, just me time. Like, “leave me alone, dangit” time.

9) I miss reading blogs!

Gahh! I want to read so many blog posts, but there just isn’t any time! I read a lot on my phone when I could last week, but I also wanted to make sure I was in the moment and talking to my friends. I just truly miss commenting and taking my time reading all the great posts out there.

10) I’m ready for classes.

I hope, at least. I am so excited and thankful to be learning about the world in such an amazing city. Not only will I be learning in the classroom, but I will be (and have already been) learning through the different experiences and people I encounter every day. So blessed!

Okay, I’m done, I’m done. But FYI, that was only about a quarter of what I want to tell you all. So many adventures, so little time!

Have a blessed Labor/Labour Day, all you who are celebrating!

So tell me:

What are some things going on in YOUR life?

Did you have trouble transitioning when you first went to college?

How have you been movin’ and groovin’?