Saturday, April 26, 2008

Carly's Column: Creative Continuum

One of my favorite things about this semester was getting the Alligator (our school newspaper) every Friday to read Carly's opinion column. Her writing has always been one of her most creative outlets (I say one of because she is possibly one of the most creative people I know and has a plethora of outlets - writing, dancing, acting, improv, gardening, painting inspiring treasure boxes that raise money for good causes ... oh wait! We never followed through with that one...) As I picked up the alligator for the last time on Friday, it brought tears to my eyes reading her outlook on what this past four years has been for her. I can hardly believe (and have done a good job suppressing) the realization that our college career is finally coming to an end. Graduating high school, I felt sure that I was setting out to conquer "the world" but when I pulled up to this limbo land they called "college" with my colorfully-striped life crammed into my trunk, I realized I wasn't in the real world at all. What real world would consider it normal to eat cereal for breakfast, lunch and dinner? To donate plasma to earn an extra $50 to go on that road trip to the LSU game? To consume copious amounts of Guava Rockstars and pull all-nighters cramming for exams and still feel accomplished? To spend your afternoons vicariously through a 2-year-old or hidden behind an alter ego named Amy Aerobics? What world grants you one week off every spring to set aside your inhibitions and let lose somewhere tropical where every drink must possess an umbrella and every body must be bikini-clad? Where else can you spend 3 out of 4 years adopting an alias of someone who is over the age of 21 just to have a nightlife but yet using your own I.D. didn't even warrant you access to the public library? What other environment is conducive to falling in love? out of love? lost on love? in love again? Where else can you live with 3 of your best friends for four years and still be dancing? Picking up Carly's column for the last time was just one of the things I will be doing for the last time as my college career (if you can even call it a "career") chapter closes. With no strings attached and no idea where I am headed this time I graduate, I think I am going to pack up my potential and all that I've learned, grab a cute pair of shoes and set out to change a few things. I am going to start a new career as a neonatal nurse. I'm pretty excited about being in the business of saving lives! I think I will shop at Whole Foods and take up the art of cooking. Try to eat balanced meals and sleep more hours in a day. I might try reopening my savings account that closed itself 4 years ago. I'm going to write more letters and try my hardest to keep in touch with the ones I won't see everyday anymore. I will seize the day and never stop smiling. Amy Aerobics might be hanging up her Asics but I might just have a few 2-year-olds of my own one day. I will still take a week off (atleast) once a year and travel to an amazing destination, bikini-clad and fruity drink with umbrella in hand but this time I might try to hold on to my inhibitions. I might even give this whole love thing a chance again....
I digress.
I posted Carly's last column but to my surprise (a fabulous surprise at that!) Carly has crossed over and created a blog to continue her writing. She is acquired a lot of fans (me being her #1, of course!) who claim to "religiously read her column" and I think her Perfectly Imperfect blog is the perfect new outlet to continue her creative column. carlyhallam.blogspot.com

College ends in realization, discovery

I’ve got new priorities. I’m holding onto old ways of life. The science of love is phony. The illness of Senioritis is real. I think men should be more respected by advertisers. I think women should be more respected in general. I like lifestyles changes to be small but significant. I like Moe’s portions to be small but filling. I’m saying “bring it on” to the future and “back off” to Facebook. I don’t like Gainesville all the time but the sadness of leaving makes me break into rhyme.
I was reading back through past columns to decide what I could focus on my final week, and nothing seemed important enough to be my last ever topic. Nothing seemed to summarize everything I wanted to say. I wanted to be able to go out with an exciting bang. I wanted to say I actually got a job. Nope. Or that I know where I’m moving in a few months. Nope. Or that I’m getting married, joining the Peace Corps, and filing an invasion of privacy lawsuit against Facebook. Absolutely not, couldn’t do it, and, that would be awesome but, no. Since I couldn’t wow you with my plans I was having trouble thinking of an equally appropriate and interesting closing topic. Until I noticed that there is a central theme that has surfaced in almost everything I wrote: realization and discovery.
By putting my thoughts into words, I’ve realized a lot about growing up, finding freedom, and accepting change. And if you think about it you’ll see we make a lot of important discoveries about our lives while in college.
Freshman year I discovered it is possible, though not always pleasurable, to live away from my mom. I realized I could eat pasta 5 nights a week without getting sick of it. I learned bunk beds aren’t as exciting as I believed they were as a child. And I could never live in a brothel because among other obvious reasons, there is such a thing as too many girls living in one place.
Sophomore year I concluded that college can be a lot of fun, especially if you live in an apartment complex with 11 friends. At this time I also realized that changing your major could be a sort of hobby if you let it. And on that note, I discovered that hobbies from your childhood, like dance, are not necessarily as fulfilling in college. But if you’re looking for a new hobby and your dad is willing to pay for it, traveling is a good option.
My junior year I realized love can hurt if you’re not too careful. While interning, I decided that living in a town full of strangers is not as lonely as it sounds. And at this time, it was also brought to my attention that celebrities often don’t look as good up close. Except Orlando Bloom. He looks good from any distance.
My senior year I’ve had the most significant revelations of all. I now know that I’m lucky to have close friends who are always available for an entertaining conversation, a good cry, or even just lunch. I understand that even if you’re smart it doesn’t mean you will pass Business Finance. And even if you go to Tutoring Zone, it still doesn’t mean you will pass Business Finance. I realize that laughter is not only the best medicine, but also the best way to bring different people together, and it can actually be a sort of aphrodisiac. Finally, I feel like I’ve somewhat come to know myself. I want to be a writer. And I want what I write to make other people laugh.
So while I was hoping to go out with an exciting bang, I’ll have to settle for going out with a simple “woo hoo!”
Just because it’s time to move on doesn’t mean life will offer you a clear path to the future. But complaining doesn’t make things better. And worrying doesn’t make things happen. So I’m going to focus on the positive.
My career plans are just as uncertain as the day I started school here. But my life is not. I’ve realized what’s important to me and I challenge everyone else to do the same.
The end of one thing is the beginning of another. The end of this semester gives us all the opportunity to realize more about ourselves and to discover more about our futures. And there’s nothing more exciting than that. Woo hoo!

Friday, April 25, 2008

April Birthdays

I'm glad we could celebrate the two of your April birthdays together! =)

Thursday, April 17, 2008

"Life goes by quicker than you think...

...so enjoy everyday like it was your last!" I recently received an e-mail from Mr. Wallace with these photogs attached to it. It was sweet of him to think of me and I wanted to post them on here for you to enjoy too!






Thursday, April 10, 2008

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Parallel Blasphemies.

My perfect driving record was ruined recently when I received my first speeding ticket (it was not exactly the first time I have been pulled over for speeding however!). Because no significant events in my life occur on a small scale, why wouldn't I have been stopped in Georgia where cops are notorious for pulling people over and not letting them out of it doing 88 in a 60 while in a construction zone where speeding fines are doubled?! How much would should an atrocity cost, you might ask? The small sum of $490... or the equivalent of your first born child. When I texted Carly to tell her the horrible news, she was in complete disbelief because she had also just received her first speeding ticket 27 minutes before mine for doing 66 in a 40 thus further supporting my theory that our lives (and our blasphemies!) are parallel.

Monday, April 07, 2008

history meets hippie

Jess and I compared our schedules for the last month of school and realized that we only have 3 days off together until the end, 2 of which were this weekend so we packed our swimsuits and headed to the East coast (of the state of Florida that is!). After moving to the centrally located city of Gainesville together the summer of freshman year and in dire need of sand and sun, our very first road trip (one of many adventures in the last 4 years!) started out taking University Avenue about 80 miles east until we reached the coast where conveniently we ended up in the amazing town of St. Augustine. History meets hippie, the oldest city in the nation has always been our favorite weekend getaway. With surfing and shopping and Spaniard-influenced Sangrias, this past weekend was filled with lots of laughs but not-so-much sun...
We quickly learned that one day at the beach was not nearly enough so we started including in our road trip camping overnight on the beach. It's possibly the most amazing {illegal} thing ever. Sleeping under a canopy of stars with the waves crashing in the distance. Waking up for sunrise before heading to the Surf Station to pick up our surfboards. Maggie looks pretty sexy with her pink (of course!) board on top! Firmly believing that dressing the part is half of the experience, we also purchased sweet rash guards (mine is pink, of course!) 4 years ago to look completely profess(h)! After warming up with a few runs of boogie boarding, Jess caught a few waves before the storms rolled in forcing us back to the town for more shopping and sipping... [Vlog to follow].

Saturday, April 05, 2008

"I want to be a mommy when I grow up!"

Days with Kate are my absolute favorite! She is at such an adorable age! She is so inquisitive, so bright and so funny! She has the most vivid imagination that takes the simplest toy and turns it into an afternoon of endless possibilities. She is an explorer. A ballerina. A gardener. A painter. A cuddler. A teacher. A comedian. A kitty cat. A swimmer. A sculptor. And today when I asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up, she told me a mommy. As my last days of college are coming too fast, I finally have to decide what I want to be when I grow up. Being a mommy is at the top of my list and I am so thankful for the past 3 years I have spent with Kate refining my "mommy" skills! She has taught me a lot about patience, nurturing and the power of naps. Triumphs, failures and perseverance. Through her, I have been reminded of innocence, determination and having the world at your fingertips. A world filled with optimism, independence, laughter and love. Now if only she could teach me how to cook and clean...