Sunday, August 29, 2010

Orientation Activities

The activities at orientation have kept me busy and helped me meet new people. There's been free dinner at the institute, a Jeremy Hoop concert (he's the actor from Charlie and The Testaments). Who knew he could sing? It wasn't really my type of music, but I liked the lyrics. Go look him up on iTunes. And we got to watch Iron Man 2, which I hadn't seen yet.

Oh, and there was a men's soccer match against Warren Wilson College. And...we won 1-0. Our goalie was really good. Hooray for some school spirit. There's been a Luau and inflatable games. We all wanted to repel off the side of the school, but I kind of chickened out and the cut off ended right after Greta, my roommate. She totally did it! Me, Rachel, Greta, and Morgann (our new friend) laughed and just had fun that night. I haven't laughed that hard in a while.

There's also been service projects. We had to go pick up garbage at the park. And I got a slice of pizza, a chocolate molten lava cake, and a bottle of water for only $1.32 from Dominoes! I'm loving all the cheap food I'm getting. We went to Walmart. Which was an adventure and a half. We got lost there and back. Usually you figure out how to get somewhere after the first time. I guess we're just challenged. But we got cleaning supplies for our dorm, and other little things that make our room feel more homey.

Then there was a stoplight dance on Saturday night. If you were single, you wore green, if you were complicated, you wore yellow, and then red if you were taken. Yes, there was mosh-pitting and body surfing. And the one guy that asked me to dance just got home off his mission from Japan. So we spoke a little Japanese to each other. Haha

The past two days, I've had 2 scriptures pop out at me. I love it when that happens. One is Helaman 2:27

"Yea we see that the Lord is merciful unto all who will, in the sincerity of their hearts, call upon his holy name."

And the other one is Helaman 4:15
"and it came to pass that they did repent, and inasmuch as they did repent they did begin to prosper."

Just simple little scriptures. But they had strong principles that I needed to be reminded of. I like how principles never change.
Classes start tomorrow, but I don't want to get too busy, because I'm having so much fun with my roommates.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Moving in

Adapting to college life is hard. And I haven't even started classes yet. AND I've taken college classes before, but this is totally different. I miss the babies (Mia, Noah, and Gracie) so much. I couldn't stop crying the first 2 days. But my emotional roller coaster has seemed to stop and I'm doing much btetter. I got my iPad and fridge, I found out one of my roommates has a car, and I made a friend who has a car. Oh, and there's a shuttle to Walmart. I'm settled in, I got my vinyl up on my wall, I feel like it's my own space. I've been getting great deals on food, and getting full on healthy food. I don't feel so lost anymore. Everything is looking up.

I'm excited for my first class in Monday. It's called Biology of Women. I'm still trying to get a job. I still need to go say hi to the Dean of Admissions, and my admissions counselor. But I did get to talk to my advisor, who's my biology teacher. Everyone's so helpful here. My dorm room got moved, so I'm in a different ward. My 3rd ward streak has ended. And it's at 9 a.m. :( I'll just have to take naps. At least my roommates didn't change. They're all really nice. I really lucked out in the roommate department, especially because there's 3 and we all share one room - which is a little cramped. The older girls only have 2 or 3 to a room. But there were over 2500 applicants this semester. Our freshman class is compared to our upperclassmen. There's supposed to be over 700 students this fall, the most they've ever had, but they're trying to get up to 1,000 to 1,200.

I'm starting to feel more and more at home all the time. I don't feel so helpless. I'm just starting to realize how simply you can live. I do wish I could take pictures of my room. I broke my mom's Nikon D60 while we were on the trip. I felt so guilty. But she forgave me. I love my mom. What did college students do before laptops, Facebook, or cellphones? You seriously would be fending for yourself. I'm totally surviving on those things.

In summary, orientation has really settled me down. And I'm happy.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Old Virginny

Yes, I'm posting this from my iPad. It was my surprise graduation gift from my parents. I don't feel like I deserve it. I love all the free apps. The only problem is I don't have a camera to take pictures of my dorm room or whatever. And even if I did, I'd have to upload them from a different computer. And I can't save pictures from other sites on my iPad. So my posts will be a little boring with no pictures from now on.

Well, i wanted to update after that, but the laptop charger broke. But we had a wonderful Sunday of relaxing in the pool, eating leftovers from Olive Garden, working out in the gym, reading, and having Tash teach us her seminary homework to us. We also got to start watching Our Mutual Friend. The car was fixed by noon on Monday. They replaced the radiator. And it wasn't the head gasket that was blown, so we we're lucky. And no engine damage. We were happily on our way. We stopped at Cracker Barrel for dinner in West Virginia It was so much more fitting to have fried apples and dumplings and biscuits in West Virginia. Our waitress had an awesome accent.

We made it to Williamsburg by 11 that night. We got to tour Williamsburg, Jamestowne, and go to the beach on Tuesday. I loved being where Felicity and Pocahontas grew up. Even though my mom liked to remind me that Felicity isn't real, and that there was no John Smith-Pocahontas romance. Oh well. I can still dream what I want. I learned a lot of cool stuff. And it just seemed so surreal to be there. I was just too happy to actually see the beach. I missed it so much. I seriously skipped and hummed down the beach. I was in heaven. And it actually reminded me of a Japanese beach. I miss Japan. Dearly.

Well I need to go to bed. But I will update about moving in and orientation and getting used to everything. Keep in contact everyone!
Virginia is gorgeous. Green like Nauvoo, but with pretty green mountains. I'm going to school in the Shenandoah valley. How cool does that sound?

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Well, we left today headed to Virginia. Just mom, me and Tash. We decided we wouldn't have enough time to go to D.C., and that we'd save that for when I get picked up in May. But we still planned to see Yorktown, Jamestown, maybe Williamsburg, Monticello, and Mt. Vernon.

We left at 9 in the morning, and even found a Qdoba's to eat at. It wasn't we went to Taco Bell...that's like the difference between The Ivy and Mcdonald's for me. We drove all the way to Louisville, Kentucky. Our plans were to go much further. But the car was acting up. It was guzzling gas and the air conditioning turned hot. The car almost overheated. So we slowed down a little and turned the A.C. off. But the engine kept revving, and even with the windows rolled down, it was miserable. The car had been taken in for a tune-up specifically for this trip, so we figured it was fine. But we called my dad and he said we should just have it checked on real quick. Luckily, we found a place, but it was closing for Saturday night. They weren't even going to help us but my mom kept persisting. And they were very nice and helped us. If not, we'd have had to wait til Monday morning just for the inspection. It took quite a while, and they said it looked like there's holes in our radiator and a gasket blew, and if we would've gone much longer, we would have blown the engine. Good thing we stopped.

So, we can still drive the car about a mile, slowly. And they're going to look at replacing the radiator early Monday morning. Luckily, there's a Subaru place right around the corner. Maybe we can even get one of our keys replaced! Huzzah! we have less time to site-see, and HOPEFULLY they'll have the right parts to replace and that there isn't anymore serious problems. But we're being prayerful and faithful. It's just a little bump in road on our adventure. :) It's been really hard to say goodbye to everyone. And I've been on an emotional roller coaster, going from sad to leave home, to stressed that everything won't work out and I'll end up hating college, to a calm feeling of every thing's going to work out, to super excited to just hurry and get there and soak up college life. I'm a walking contradiction. I loved the extra week of no work, getting extra time to say goodbye to people and slowly packing and spending time with my family. And as tearful as I was this morning, I just wanted to hurry and get there, and now this.

But, I'm really starting to believe that everything DOES happen for a reason. This is where my dad would say, "Good luck=bad luck!" And things could've been much worse. Classes could've been starting this Monday, creating huge problems time wise, I could've been alone, we could've not made it this far, we could've blown the engine, on the side of the road on this hot day, because we ignored the problem and just kept going. AND there's lots of hotels and restaurants walking distance from the auto repair place :) So we got to go to Olive Garden, which I haven't been to in years. The sad part is, we can't go to church because it's too far of a drive. Oh, and the weird thing is, my mom was talking to us this morning about recognizing the feeling of being irritated as a warning sign that you're about to act or say something in a negative way. So instead, it should be an invitation to be positive and react in a Christlike way. Gosh, I'm sitting here preaching when it's all about myself and silly car problems.

Well I hope we make it there in one piece! Who knows what kind of a blessing in diguise this is :)
P.S. We read The Giver together in the car today and finished it. We loved it, except the ending is vague, and we don't like those.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

'Tis the Last Rose of Summer

Gloria requested that I do more blog posts, so I will. Well, I'm done with work until I leave. It was the summer of working for me. I worked at three different places, sometimes all three in one day especially when business is busy during pageant season. It was funny to see people come to all three places and be like, "you're everywhere! where do you NOT work?" I love that the minimum wage in Illinois is the highest in the country - $8.25 (only D.C. and CT are that high)

I'm slowly packing and cleaning out my room. Giving all my hand-me-downs away, throwing away crap, saving stuff in my hope chest. It feels so weird to go live without my family, and to have my stuff in two different places. Oh well, I'll get used to it.

I'm excited about the classes I'm taking:

Biology of Women
America and the Enlightenment
Becoming a Leader-Servant
College Algebra
Bella Voce (Chorus)
Reason and the Self
and Institute!

I'm actually not to keen on the algebra. But I'll do my best. All my books came in the mail, except the one I have to get at the bookstore when I get there. Orientation is 4 days long! (If you include the Sunday before classes start. There's going to be a movie party, Luau, a dance, and lots of firesides and institute stuff too. I keep going from super relaxed about it to super excited to super stressed out (I can't breathe.) Which is normal I guess. I wouldn't be half as scared if I was going to Utah and be surrounded by people I know, but then that just sounds too easy. I need my adventure of being completely on my own. Classes start the 30th.

Well, I had a long Friday and Saturday of working doubles, but on Sunday I got to sleep in (I love afternoon church, even though nobody else does), and go to Quincy! We got there just as the sun was setting. Gloria hurried and snapped a few shots of our family just in time. Then we had a college/mission prep family home evening together. (Basically for me and Austin). Including a scripture chase and learning to sew on buttons. Me and Austin planned to pull an all-nighter. It started off with s'mores, watching Salad Fingers and Rémi Gaillard on YouTube, going and buying a bunch of junk...this is where Brady dropped out because he had to wake up early the next day. So me, Tash, Kennedy, and Austin played the skittles game. When it our mouths got full enough, we just spit it out. But Kennedy had to wake up early too so she went to bed. And Tash said she had to work the next day so she went to bed too.

Me and Austin were determined to stay up. We watched a Disney Singalong, watched all the Balloonshop videos on YouTube, told each other all the jokes we know...and played the skittles game again. Just the two of us. Which is suicidal, especially because we decided not to swallow. Just chew. I had to use my hands to move my jaw to chew at one point. Then I sad let's see how many skittles we can stuff in our mouths. I had to hold my lips closed I had so many! This is where Austin gagged and started throwing up. I smelled it, and started throwing up in my hands and had to wait for him to finish with the bowl. Yes, we shared a throw up bowl. We are seriously like cousins. We go all the way back to Bro. and Sis. Guthier's CTR 8 primary class in Tokyo :) But it's weird because our birthdays, he's a grade older than me plus he graduated early. And it doesn't help that he's over a foot taller than me. I think he always has been, actually. But anyways, enough rambling.

We ended up only staying up til 4 am, because we didn't want to die the next day. I was about ready to beat the little kids who came down and played Wii and Kingdom Hearts at 7:30 in the morning. I didn't get to go to Qdoba's because it was closed. Being with the Rodenberg's was worth it, though. I love having old friends that feel like family because you've been there for everything together. I will miss them so much in Virginia. They feel like family. And I think that was the perfect way to start wrapping up my summer. Tashi and the babies start school tomorrow. I never have to set foot into that possessed school again. Hopefully she can do something good by being senior class president. I am in a good mood! I think I shall go cuddle up with Cranford. :)

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Now the Summer's Over...

^ (Sunday evenings are never boring at our house) ^

Wow. This is sad. One post a month? Time is slipping away. This has been my fastest summer by far. The days have completely blended together and I don't know what happened what day or if today is Wednesday or Thursday or if it's the 12th or 13th. I feel like it will be Christmas before I know it. Tash and mom will drive me to Virginia in a little over a week. I feel so unprepared. All of my textbooks haven't come in the mail yet! There's been so much drama with that. Like there was a $150 textbook that I needed, and I found it for $70 on Ebay. So I bought it. But then I found it for $45 on So I was grrrrrred. (Yes that's a word). But the $70 one never came in the mail. So we were able to get our money back. And get the cheaper one. Hooray.

^ (Why yes, we can amuse ourselves with plastic glasses) ^

Pageant is over. I'm not as sad as I was last year. Probably because we still live in Nauvoo and will always be here for it. And we can always stay in touch with all the pageant people. It was so good to see people from past years and meet so many amazing new people. We met the Richardson family. They have 25 kids - 20 of those adopted from all over the world. 18 still live at home. They live on a big ranch in Missouri, and came to Nauvoo to sell a book about their story. My mom bought a few. I still need to read it. So they were camping at the State Park for the whole month of July. With that many people!!! But their kids are all super nice and well-behaved. I wish I could've gotten to know them better. They watched pageant every night they were here. Can I talk about pageant enough?

^ (We went to Bloomington for the weekend to visit the Smith family) ^

All my friends are leaving for college within the next few days. Technically I don't need to be there til the 26th, but we're leaving the 20th to take a D.C./Virginia history road-trip. I really want to go to a North Carolina beach too, but maybe I can do that later because one of my roommates is from NC :)
^ (Ethan, a workcrew boy from pageant) ^

I had an amazingly fun time at the Smiths. I love Ella and Charles. We can just sit there and play card and board games for hours. I got to go to the mall and Barnes and Noble ♡ And I discovered that jeggings aren't for me. We got to go to their ward and I just went to YW with Tash and Ella. I answered a question and got it wrong. I was very glad they thought I was a Miamaid instead of almost 19 hee hee. We had so much Japanese food while we were there too. And got to buy some yay

We have a new kitty named Jiji. Named after the cat on Mahou no Takkyubin (or Kiki's Delivery Service). She is so pretty. Her tail is super long and she has piercing yellow eyes. Yes she's all black, but her fur is long and silky and we're not superstitious. She followed me and my mom home on a walk. She called out to us and just wanted to be held and fed. There was no momma or other baby cats around. And she was old enough to be weaned, but young enough to train for a litter box. And yes, she's trained now. She's the perfect cat. Seriously, the pooping all over the garage was the only problem at first, and even that's fixed now. She doesn't scratch or bite, and she loves to be held and rub up on you. She's also super afraid of cars, which is a good thing. Hopefully it will protect her from getting run over. She's an outside kitty. We let her roam the soybean patch to the west of our house, and the woods behind our back fence. And she always comes back. We almost named her Kiki, but the babies (Mia, Noah, and Grace) insisted on Jiji. No matter how much water we give her, she insists on drinking the collected water in the broken pool.

So I didn't leave the Tri-state area this summer, but I have learned to enjoy the places and people close by. And hopefully college out east will be a fun adventure for me. I'll miss everyone. Including Jiji-kitty. It's hard to go to school out east when it seems like everyone's going to school in Utah :( But I KNOW i was supposed to go to SVU, so I'm not going to doubt it.