Thursday, December 25, 2008

Greetings from New Jersey

Hello everyone,

Yes, I am writing you from my lovely home in NJ. No, I don't want you to make fun of me for living here, or to feel bad for me, I love it here. Merry Christmas by the way! Hope Santa was good to everyone, I know I must have been good this year because I got some great stuff.

But we all know it's not about the stuff, and so do I. I've been having an amazing time with my family and friends I don't get to see often. I've had two yankee swaps, baked 60 cookies, visited relatives, seen a movie, shoveled lots of snow, and of course done some swimming.

Speaking of swimming, we leave for training trip in Florida on Sunday. We're there until the 5th of January (we celebrate New Years together) and go back to school the 6th to train more until classes start the next week. Florida is so much fun, and even though we swim twice as much as usual and we're sore and tired, it's an amazing bonding experience for us as a team. I'm super excited.

Anyway that's all I've got tonight. Hopefully I'll update after Florida when we're back at school to let you all know I survived and am ready for spring semester (grades were good by the way :]). Until then, stay warm?

-Christine

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

what really happens during finals week

Oh hi,

So don't be decieved by the title here, I've already explained how finals works and am not doing it again. Instead, I'm going to show you what happens to college students when we get all couped up inside studying all day. This is my roommate...she's amazing. Enjoy:


video

video

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Flurries, Finals, and Fun

Hey everybody!

So it’s a busy busy time here on campus with finals starting on Monday. The last week of classes was packed with work and papers and tests and such, but we’ve got one more stretch until Christmas break.

Last weekend was the NE-10 championships for swimming. The meet started Friday afternoon and went until Sunday night, so on Thursday we had practice, gorged ourselves at a pasta party, and trucked on down to Southern Connecticut. It was a long and tiring weekend, but we had a lot of fun. Sleepover meets are always the best. In fact, here's a video of some dancing on the bus after one morning session:

video

Both the men’s and women’s teams finished in 5th place overall, and we broke tons of records. We’ve got a break from meets now until we come back to school. We go down to Florida on the 28th and come back to school early on the 6th to swim doubles until everyone comes back for second semester.

Meanwhile, it’s getting very Christmas-y here on campus. We just had a snowstorm and got tons of snow. Campus is also decorated for the holidays. There are lights on a bunch of the trees and other decorations all over. We also have a tradition here called Christmas dinner, and it was Thursday night. It was so delicious. There were potatoes, roast beef, ham, egg nog, hot cider, and of course delicious desserts. There were also some professors there helping to serve us the food. Later that night my friends and I also had our annual Christmas party, complete with secret Santa, cookies, and merriment. I got earmuffs, peanut butter cups, and candy canes from my Santa, and I love them! A few weeks ago some friends and I went to a honors program activity where we made Christmas cards to send to seniors in a nursing home. Basically, we’ve really been getting into the Christmas spirit.

But of course we can’t get carried away with holiday festivities when finals are coming up. The way they work here is there are two time slots for exams each day: 9-11:30 and 1-3:30. Your exam time depends on when your class meets, so there’s never an overlap issue. If you don’t have an actual written test, your paper or project or whatever it is will probably be due during that time too. To help with the stress, the school has a lot of stress-free activities over the weekend, like music and relaxation. They also have a bunch of masseuses come in and give 15 minute massages to us when we sign up. I got one last night and it was so nice.

Anyway that's all for now. I'm sure I'll update this week about our progress with finals (usually we start with group studying and end up taking group naps in the lounge, so who knows). Until then, stay warm everyone.

-Christine

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The post-it wall and other excitements

Oh hiiiiii!

So as you can see, I finally did make it back to SMC after my long-term relationship with the airport. (we parted as friends though and agreed to meet back up after finals). But let's not jump to finals, there's still two packed weeks until then.

This week is a bit short for me, and that's not really a good thing. Missing classes Monday set me back a bit (and unfortunately led to me being up first for a presentation on Monday morning and getting an inconvenient time for my Italian oral exam, but what can you do). Just goes to show, missing class in college isn't the best thing, but I'm sure everyone already assumed that.

I'm also cutting out Friday of this week (and Saturday, Sunday, and Thursday night if you want to get particular). The swim team's big mid-season championships are this weekend, the NE-10 championships. For most teams this is at the end of their season, but we have another big meet in February. So we have practice tomorrow night, a pasta party at one of our captain's townhouses, and then we load up the bus and travel down to Southern Connecticut for the meet. I'm swimming a whole bunch of stuff and we're really hoping the team is going to do well. I'm sure you'll hear all about it from both me and Mairead when we return.

On a good note, I'm in remission from my latest illness, the common cold. Mairead was actually just hear picking up some cold remedies from the pharmacy I have in my closet (nothing shady and illegal? which I realize now this sounds like haha). I'm not sure if anyone has caught on yet, but my immune system and I don't really get along. Sometimes I question whether or not he even exists.

It seems like alot of people are getting sick, but that's probably a combination of stress, lack of sleep, cold weather, and ALOT on our plates. Finals are in a few weeks and everyone's got papers and projects and presentations and all kinds of other things that may or may not start with the letter "p".

Speaking of the letter "p", post-it starts with that. And speaking of post-it's, since we are now, that reminds me of the post-it wall I've formed for myself. Each post-it is a different thing "plaguing my existence" as I said earlier. In other words, it's a collection of all the things I need to get done before finals/before I return home again (via my bff the airport) for Christmas break. Once all of those things are done, I can focus on finals, safe travels, time at home with family and friends, and then the fabulous time that is the swim team's training trip in Florida. But don't worry, I'll be sure to write all about that and put up lots of pictures when we return...let's not get ahead of ourselves.

So I think that's all for now. I've got to get back to conquoring the post-its. Hope everyone's doing well and feeling healthy and rested. Talk to you soon.
-Christine

Sunday, November 30, 2008

the airport and I are doing some bonding

Hello hello

So it's Sunday night and I should be back at school by now but unfortunately I'm still home (I mean not so unfortunate but kind of since I have class in the morning that I am obviously not going to). After getting to the airport, waiting in line, waiting for a plane, having my flight cancelled, and waiting in another line, I'm back at home with a ticket for tomorrow night's flight. OH THE JOYS OF TRAVELLING.

So I'm planning to spend most of the day in the airport tomorrow, being on standby for earlier flights to try and make it to school in time for practice. Otherwise I'll be getting in to VT around 7. Anyway, thought I'd update on that little bit of my life since flying or driving or the trains or buses will be part of every one's lives come college traveling time. Talk to you soon (hopefully).

-Christine

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

home again home again

Hey everyone!
So not much so day today, just that everyone is excited to go home for break! Don't get us wrong, we love it here, but it's been a while since most of us have had a delicious home cooked meal, and what could be better than Thanksgiving Dinner!

In other news, the hockey teams home opener was this weekend. Friday night they played Salem state and it was alot of fun. Unfortunately they lost, but the games are still always enjoyable. SMC provided bussing over to the rink (it's not located on campus), so students without cars or who didn't want to drive could still go support the team. Sporting events are a great chance to show your spirit and cheer on the teams, and you may even discover you know someone on the team who you didn't know played. I didn't go to a game last year until the last one (where we won the NE-10 championships!) but this year I think I'll go to more.

So I'm not sure if I'll be posting while I'm home in the great state of New Jersey, but will be sure to update on my travels when I come back to school next week. Have a great holiday and enjoy!
-Christine

Thursday, November 20, 2008

SHACKing up

Hello again!

I hope everyone is doing well on this chilly Thursday (it's chilly here at least). Tomorrow's FRIDAY so that's always amazing. This week on campus was Hunger and Homelessness week, and that includes alot of activity going on with M.O.V.E., the service program here on campus. M.O.V.E. sponsors tons of different trips and activities (Mairead talks more about them in her latest entry and any of us can answer questions you may have about that). For this week, everything was centered around help and awareness for hunger and homelessness, especially in Vermont. On Monday, for example, 250 or so people wore bright green shirts to represent the 10% of Vermonters who visit a food shelf each year. Students were also asked to bring in canned donations to the dining hall earlier in the week.

One of the most noticed activities that M.O.V.E. does this week each year is to put up a shack in the middle of campus. The purpose of the shack is to raise awareness about homelessness and to point out how hard it would be to actually live in something like that. In fact, many homeless in the area would probably give anything for something as sturdy as the wooden shack we use. Not only does the shack stand in the middle of campus, but students volunteer all week to stay in it for an hour a day or overnight, to continue awareness and get a taste for the experience.

On Tuesday night my friends and I stayed over in the shack (we did it last year too) and had a pretty good time. It was very cold, but we were equipped with sleeping bags, blankets, and many layers, some of the things the homeless do not have and we take for granted. We also had many visitors to the shack, which made our time there more enjoyable. Even so, we experienced what it would be like to not have anywhere to go for a night but a small wooden shack.

Perhaps what makes the experience hit home even more is that the first real snow of the season happened Monday night into Tuesday morning, so we slept in the shack after a day of cold and snowy conditions. That made us think even more about how hard it would be to have nowhere to go now that the winter cold and snow are coming. The shack is a great idea to raise awareness and whether you stay in it for an hour or overnight, everyone gets something out of it.

I recorded a video in order for everyone to get a better feel for the shack, and also have a picture of all of us in it. Here they are:

video


Also, here's and article from the Echo, our online newsaper, covering the shack. There's a multi-media presentation to go along with it too.

So I hope the rest of everyone's Thursday goes well, and if I don't check back before the weekend, enjoy that too!

-Christine

Monday, November 17, 2008

Yay Burlington!

Hello everyone!

I thought it would be a fabulous idea to share today's yahoo news with everyone. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), Burlington, Vermont is the healthiest city in America! Here's the link to the story. ::EDIT:: PErez Hilton also informed the celeb gossip readers about B-Town's success! http://perezhilton.com/2008-11-17-burlington-vt-is-the-usas-healthiest-city

So if everything that the SMC campus has to offer hasn't convinced you just yet, we now have the added benefits of being so close to Burlington. In fact, it makes sense that the area is so healthy. The air is fresh, food is as organic as possible, vegetarians are plentiful, and everyone is super active. People ride bikes instead of driving, and come winter, skiing and riding are the top activities. I know I've already mentioned how great Burlington is in terms of what it offers students, so this is just an added bonus.

Personally, the fresh air is my favorite part of Vermont. It may be freezing some days, but even then the air is fresh, and seems even more so when you have a clear view straight to the mountains. I love getting out of the car after driving or flying back to campus and taking a great big breath. So I don't know if that's what you're looking for in a school, but if it is then I'd venture to say SMC is the place for you.

So, from the city next to the healthiest city in America, see you later
-Christine

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Registration Game

Hey everyone!

So not much but the same old same old going on here. We won our meet this past Saturday! Actually, we won twice? It was a double dual meet against Colby-Sawyer and Gordon Colleges, so all together the team came out with 4 wins total. We've got another meet down at Skidmore this Saturday so wish us luck.

Other than that, registration is finishing up and everyone will be done by the end of the week. I figured I'd take that topic and run with it, especially since most schools don't really disclose the logistics of registration until you're already attending.

So as a first year, you register the summer before you get here. Most people will register on their registration weekend here at campus. Some students come just for registration, but most go on a weekend trip (POW, WOW, Trek, Pontigny, etc). I DEFINITELY recommend one of these trips. You meet people right away and don't feel as nervous about coming to school in the fall. In fact, I was super excited after my POW weekend. If anyone wants any more information about pre-orientation, let me know and I can do another post on that. I probably will anyway.

So back to registration. If you don't come to one of those days, you can register on paper I believe. But for those that come to campus for the process, you are given a temporary advisor (you're assigned another one once you declare a major/get to school in the fall). This advisor helps you pick classes you should start off with first semester, teaches you how to schedule them all together in terms of timing, and shows you how Knightvision works. Knightvision is the computer program that makes registering happen. Basically you go to your page, search for the subjects and sections you want, add them to a list, and register for them.

After your first semester, students are all required to meet with their advisers (probably new ones) about how everything is going and what we are planning to take the next semester. Registration is fairly early (we're finishing up for spring semester already), but it's good to be ready and have it out of the way. Each class year is then broken up into three groups which will register on three different days. So obviously seniors register first, juniors, and so on. I was in group 3 for sophomores, so I registered with the last group of sophomores. The class year you are in is determined by number of credits, so people who came into school with extra credits may get to register a class ahead of their own. Registration starts at 7am so everyone sets their alarms to as late as possible, gets up, sits down at their computers, and waits to click the "submit" button. Then, you hold your breath and hope that when the screen reloads you have gotten into the classes you wanted.

For the most part, it's not too bad to get into classes. Obviously higher level classes will be filled up with upperclassmen first, but there's always a way to work out a problem. You can get put on the professor's wait list for the class, petition into it with a specific form, and even show up on the first day of classes and ask if there is room for you. People tend to drop out of specific classes the first week so there's always the chance a spot will open up. That's actually what I'm planning to do for one of my classes. I go into 3 of the 4 I tried to register for, so not a bad deal.

Anyway, hope that was a helpful insight into the inner workings of being a student here at SMC. If any one's got any more questions on that feel free to ask them via comment or email or facebook or whatever. Until later!

-Christine

Thursday, November 6, 2008

I'm obviously a celeb

THIS JUST IN!

So my friend Meg and I started a facebook group here at SMC last year called "Overheard at Saint Mike's". It's basically where people post things they overhear for all to read (no names mentioned) including where and when. It's really fun and it's based off the book "Overheard in New York" as well as the website (and other colleges have similar sites). So anyway, we recently got interviewed about it and had a small article published in the campus newspaper The Defender.

Soooooo go here : http://journalism.smcvt.edu/defender/ and read under the Features section (it's called "Have you overheard?")

That's all I've got for right now. Traveling to Colby-Sawyer this weekend for a double dual meet. Maybe I'll get some photo footage of the situation. Until then!

-Christine

Monday, November 3, 2008

It's November!?!

Hello everyone! SUPER sorry it’s been so long since my last post. Last week was a bit rough for me, dealing with a new illness and tons of work. But the good news is I’ve got tons to talk about.
So let’s start with swimming. On October 26th we had a meet down at Bentley, in Massachusetts. We left the night before since the meet was early and it’s a bit of a drive. I don’t know about the rest of the team, but I LOVE meets where we get to leave early and stay in a big comfy hotel bed. Before hitting the hotel, we went to Rachel’s house (she’s a first year on the team) for dinner. After loading up on pasta, salad, dirt (the edible kind) and good times, we crashed at the hotel in what I like to call a food-coma. We woke up bright and early the next morning, ate breakfast (all 40 something of us clad in purple and gold, what a sight), and headed off to the school. The team did really well considering it was the first meet of the season (and of college for our first years) and I really think it helped ease everyone back into racing.

After that meet we had a pretty grueling week of practice. It wasn’t any more swimming than usual, but we think coach was inspired by Miracle, since we watched it on the bus. He made us repeat swims over and over until we did them the way he wanted. One day he even brought out a whistle. Still, the general consensus was that there was a method to his madness, and it seemed to work considering our meet this past weekend. We had our first home meet (and the only one this semester) against SUNY Potsdam. It was nice to have a meet here at our own pool, and even better to have all of our friends come out and cheer for us. There were even some professors there. The meet was great and a lot of the races were really close, but both the men’s and women’s teams came out with wins. That’s especially exciting since we lost to this team last season. Everyone had a really great time and we’re looking forward to more swimming (and hopefully more wins). We’ve got an away meet this Saturday against Colby-Sawyer so we’ll see how that goes.

So between those lovely swimming activities, there were some fun Halloween related things happening on campus. This year, like last year, I volunteered at the annual Harvest Carnival. It’s run by the Martin Luther King society, and is an alternative Halloween for 2-12 year olds. Instead of taking young kids out on Halloween (some neighborhoods around here aren’t ideal for that), parents can bring their kids to the sports center and participate for a small fee (something like $5 to cover program costs). There’s blow up activities like a moon bounce and obstacle course, arts and crafts (I worked there), pumpkin carving and painting, games, dancing, mini golf, and tons more. And, of course, candy everywhere. All the kids had a great time and so did I.

This Friday, Halloween (which by the way is my favorite holiday pretty much), was the annual Halloween dance. The school holds a costume dance for us every year (it’s $5 too) and it was a lot of fun. Swim team had to turn in early to rest up, but we still got to go and hang out for a while. I loved seeing everyone in their costumes (I was a firefighter).

In other news, tomorrow is Election Day. I already voted via absentee, but for anyone who hasn’t, get out there! Especially young people! It was really cool to be able to mail my vote for President of the United States. It’s kind of a big deal. So that’s my reminder for that (that’s all I’ll say since I’m not exactly politically savvy). A friend of mine also showed me this website that’s kind of interesting. It’s called the political compass. It is about a 10 minute survey that then maps you politically? It’s hard to explain but it’s all on the website. Check it out if you’re interested: http://www.politicalcompass.org/test

It’s getting a bit chilly here and we’ve had little snow flurries here and there so far. I ordered my Smugg’s pass a few weeks ago. The college gives us this AMAZING deal with Smuggler’s Notch, a local ski area about 45 minutes away. I’ve been going there since I was 7 so I was very excited about the arrangement. For $30 we get a full season pass to all three mountains at Smuggs. I have no idea how much a season pass normally is, but I know it’s about $80 for a one day lift ticket, so it pays for itself before you even get to the mountain. I believe we also get discounts on gear rentals, but I don’t know because I have my own stuff. Anyway, if you’re into skiing or riding that’s definitely a huge perk about SMC.

I think that’s all for now (Gossip Girl is on in 5 minutes and I have a pile of unfolded laundry sitting on my bed). I’ll try to make sure my next update isn’t two weeks from now, and I’m sure it won’t be. Keep reading!

-Christine

Friday, October 17, 2008

one's company, two's a crowd, and three's a party

Happy Friday everyone!

Sorry for the random title, I was having writer's block for a creative one. So I told you all last time I had tons to talk about and it’s true! First of all, I went home and surprised my family over the long weekend. For those who don’t remember, home for me is New Jersey. It was really nice to spend time with my family, especially my brother and sister, and to have my mom do my laundry and cook good food for me :]. The weather was gorgeous and I had a really good time at home, especially sleeping and doing nothing in an attempt to cure my cold, which I still have.

When I returned on Tuesday I was really excited to go to a special even at UVM (the University of Vermont, which is down the street.) I went to see Frank, the founder of PostSecret, speak about how he got started, details of the project, and some of the secrets he’s received over the years. It was a really enjoyable experience and if anyone is interested in PostSecret and he’s coming to a school near you, I definitely recommend it. For those who have no idea what I’m talking about, PostSecret is a community art project where people send in their secrets to Frank on postcards (or whatever else they want really). The process of sending the secrets helps give a person closure, just to know that one person knows the secret. Frank introduces himself by saying that he collects secrets, and has been called the most trusted man in America. Here’s the website, for those who want to take a look. New secrets are posted every Sunday and I’m a regular visitor.

Wednesday was back to classes (though I only had one because my other two were cancelled). After class and lunch I had a meeting with the woman in charge of study abroad here at Saint Mike’s. I plan to study in Florence, Italy next fall and need to get on top of the long process of applying and such. I got a bunch of books with information on programs (there’s so many, I don’t know how I’m going to pick!), and a packet with all the information I need to apply and get letters written for me. The study abroad opportunities here at SMC are phenomenal; students can go just about ANYWHERE, as I think I’ve already said. Anyway, if anyone is wondering about that I’d be happy to say more of what I know.

Yesterday was free burritos at boloco! So obviously after practice some of the girls and I headed downtown for our free food. We waited on a line that went out the door and down the block, but soon enough we had delicious burritos. After that we hit up Charlotte Russe because we heard about a rack for shirts for 99 cents! Needless to say we made out like bandits and returned home.

Today I had another meeting. This was with Dr. O., the new professor here in charge of the Observatory across the street. Not very many people get to use the observatory, and I wanted to change that, or at least get a chance to use it for myself. He took us over there and showed us around and said he’s going to let us know when he starts taking classes out there. He said about once a week so that’s really exciting, I’m pumped.

Tonight is also Friday Knight Dry. It’s an activity on campus we had last spring and again tonight. The idea is to have a ton of fun without the use of alcohol (hence the Dry part) There’s a bunch of activities all over campus and you win FKD money (monopoly money) for participating and doing well. Its stuff like guitar hero tournaments, ddr, poker, shaving cream slip and slide, mini golf, and so much more. Then at 10:30 there’s an auction where you use the money you won to bid on really cool prizes. The best thing to do is to pool together with your friends for something big. Last year a group of my friends won a lounge chair! Anyway then after that is Midknight Madness, the SMC take on the traditional first basketball practice/pep rally that most colleges do. I won’t be able to attend because I’ll be in bed resting up for our inter-squad swim meet that’s tomorrow morning (half the team against the other half, for fun and times) but I’m sure it will be fun.

So, like I said, a lot going on this week and especially tonight. Hope everything is going well for everyone, time for me to go get ready for the evening (and warm up, it’s getting chilly!) As always, emails and comments are fabulous, keep them coming.

Have a good weekend!
-Christine

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

swim team

Hello Hello

So I’ve got tons to talk about but it will have to wait until the next post because this one is dedicated to answering the question left in a comment for me a few posts ago. Here’s what it said:

Could you tell me more about the swim team. I will be applying to SMC and am very interested in swimming. Since its DII, what were the tryouts like and when were they when you were senior...when you came to SMC in the fall, or before that. Thanks

So I know not everyone is interested in the swim team (even though you should be), but this kind of information may apply for other sports too so read on.

Swimming, like all sports here at SMC, is Division 2. We practice 5 days a week (Monday –Friday) with dryland on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and lifting twice a week plus full team lift on Saturday afternoon. Practices are 3:30-5:30 and if you have a class scheduling conflict with that once or twice a week, you can go to morning practices which are offered every day from 5:30-7:30 AM.

We don’t really have a “tryout” period, like basketball or hockey. If you’re interested in learning more about the team in terms of you swimming on it, I suggest contacting coach. His email is JDonoghue@smcvt.edu. You can visit and meet with him and in the spring we have a recruit weekend where a bunch of recruits come and stay with swimmers (most likely freshmen.) Last year we had a pasta dinner together, played water polo, and then got together at night. It’s usually a weekend in March or April. If you can’t come to that, there are plenty of people who come for a weekend at their convenience, mostly in the spring when we’re out of season.

After that, if you decide you’re going to come here and swim for us, practice starts in late September. This year it was the 22. The first two weeks we tend to lose a few people here and there who decide swimming isn’t for them or that they don’t want to do it anymore. Otherwise, it’s a long haul until February for the rest of us. We have our first meet in the end of October. You can find our schedule here. If you live somewhere nearby any of our meet locations and want to come watch us swim, tell coach and he can talk with you!

In December, over Christmas break, we go on a training trip. It’s not mandatory because of the cost, but it’s definitely recommended by coach and the rest of the team. It’s tons of fun, really hard, and a great bonding experience for us. We leave a few days after Christmas, are there over New Years, and then come back to school a week before everyone else to swim some more. Most days are double sessions with practices in the morning and the afternoon. Below is a pic of the whole team before practice one morning.

Championships are in February and then we’re done! Last year the women’s team placed 7th out of 21 team and the men places 7th out of 14 teams at championships. This year we’ve got a much bigger team, especially the men, and we’re very excited to do well.

So I think that’s all I can say without going overboard. If you’ve got other questions, don’t hesitate to email me, comment back, or even email coach. Hope that was helpful.

I’ll be back sometime with week or weekend with another post about everything exciting going on in my life. Lot’s of good reading material. Anyway, check back in a few days!

-Christine

Thursday, October 9, 2008

tylenol cold and I are in a serious relationship

Hey everyone.

Almost as promised, I have some pictures for everyone. They’re more of what fabulous things I get to look at as I make my way through SMC every day than just scenery (The view across the street or on the lawn, for example). So, I hope you enjoy those. Before that, a few other notes:

I’ve finally fallen victim to the common cold here on campus, and am suffering through this illness with the help of frequent naps, Tylenol cold, and lots of tea. So if I don’t come back to life for a little longer than usual, I’m sorry about that and will definitely catch back up with everyone about whatever I do over this coming long weekend.

Also, to the person who left me a comment about the swim team, I promise I will dedicate my next post to that, unless you’d like to leave me an email address and you and I can chat one on one. Whichever is fine, as I’m sure there are other potential swimmers, or at least potential SMC athletes, out there who can benefit from a public post.

Some big news, or at least I thought so, came from my dad this week. He informed me that a high school friend of his and active alum here at SMC reads the musings of my daily life as a student. That’s pretty exciting for me, especially since she says she’s got a bunch of other alumni following my page as well. So shout out to Mel (or Mrs. Hannigan, if you require more propriety) and all the other former students tuned in to my life. I’m super excited to have you all reading. Maybe we should set up a correspondence and get some “guest-posts” going later in the year. I’m all for it.

Anyway so here’s those pictures:


here's the walk to the pool I make every day. These trees are usually some of the first to change
this is the view from outside of my dorm, Founders Hall. It's a lot prettier in person, so you should all probably come visit and check it out for yourselves.
Here's a shot of the path and lawn leading to the library in the distance. Still looks pretty green.
I even have a gorgeous view from my 10:30 classroom.
This is a quick shot of my room in Founders. Two of us live here, we just can't get our futon to come out of bed mode? It's a nice big room and Sarah and I love it!

Here's our pride and joy, our picture wall. With the help of friends we got our picture boards up and they look really great.

OK everyone! That's all for now. Thanks for checking in and keep reading. As always, comment or email me anything at all at camoresano@smcvt.edu

Stay healthy,

Christine

Sunday, October 5, 2008

when all else fails...procrastinate

So I’ve been working on a paper for my fiction class all day now, and it’s coming a long slow and steady, but I figured I’d take a little time aside to write a post. That way at least I don’t feel like a total failure at writing as a whole. So this will probably be posted after I do finish my paper, but as of now it’s still a work in progress.

Meanwhile, nothing too exciting has been going on around here. Week two of swimming finished and I was slightly less sore and exhausted than the first, so that’s always a plus. Went to mass tonight, like every Sunday. I sing in the choir this year and I really really love it. I’m just very glad to do something that’s not swimming related and this fits perfectly into my schedule. Just goes to show that even if you play a sport here, there’s plenty of time for other activities. My roommate Sarah runs cross country and can do virtually any activity she wants.

Speaking of Sarah, she’s got her first tour coming up on Tuesday (she’s a new tour guide) so good luck to her! There were tons of tours on campus today. They came through the library while my teammates and I chained ourselves to the tables to do our various assignments. This is a busy week at SMC for a lot of students. It’s near mid-term time and with a long weekend coming up, so professors are having assignments due before we all miss classes for 2 days and forget everything they’ve taught us. Not my favorite tactic but it probably helps.

While chatting with my mom earlier, she mentioned that none of us have talked about attending any SMC sporting events yet. For me, swim practice is going on during a lot of the events, like soccer games and such. In our defense, some of the team and I did stop by the men’s rugby game against Middlebury Saturday, after lifting at the gym. Rugby is a crazy sport to watch, and it’s nice to get some little taste of a football-esque sport since I truly miss it. (Notre Dame won again this week btw!)

It’s been really beautiful up here lately and was nice to be outside Saturday at that game. It’s getting chilly but I absolutely love it. Fall is coming in nicely and the view from the lawn across the street has changed from a bright green landscape to the vibrant colors of the turning leaves. I heard it’s snowed a few times way up in the mountains. That can take its time coming down here though. I’m going to try to get some pictures or a video up here soon so everyone can appreciate the scenery.

I think that’s all for now. I’ll hopefully have an update sometime mid-week on how the busy week is going. Meanwhile, keep the comments coming. And for those of you brave enough, you can put your names on them so you’re not some anonymous mystery, though I’m sure I could guess who a few are from.

Back to my paper,
Christine

Monday, September 29, 2008

I sure hope this doesn't turn into my whole life story

Hello again everyone!

So I was thinking of topics for the next thrilling look into my life at Saint Mike’s, and it suddenly struck me. What better than a mini “day in the life” of Christine Amoresano, SMC sophomore. I mean as far as I’m concerned I’m a quasi-normal 19 year old college student, why not let my readers (who are presumably college hopefuls, and hopefully Saint Michael’s College hopefuls) in on the actual play by play of a typical day. So let’s do this, shall we?

Monday, Wednesday, and Friday always start off with breakfast at 10 with my bff neighbor Megan and my teammate, friend, and fellow blogger Mairead. Then we head to our 10:30 classes. Meg and I have research methods which, for psychology majors like us is a requirement and a pre-requisite to most of the awesome psych classes to follow (sport’s psych here I come!). Side note: I’ve taken general psych, psych stats, and abnormal psych pre-this semester (and tons of other classes so if you’re interested in anything at all, email me and I can help you out or ask someone who can.)

Moving on, Meg ditches me to go eat whatever delicious wrap there is for lunch, and I go to my next class: Italian. I’m super excited to be taking it since I want to study abroad in Italy next fall (that's me studying in the gorgeous Vermont outdoors). We have an amazing study abroad program here by the way. You can go ANYWHERE you want to. Sarah, my roommate, is thinking about a semester at sea, where you stay on a boat and go all over. So cool.

After that I head on over to Genres: Fiction. It’s a really enjoyable class where we read and discuss, and it fulfills my English requirement. If anyone has any questions about our requirements here (it could be confusing) let me know and I can help you out. I won’t mention it here for the sake of those that already know, since it’s one of those boring admissions questions.

After that I head over to Alliot for lunch with my boyfriend (I used to eat alone so he pushed back his lunch time…so nice) and some friends. Post-lunch I usually try to rest my brain for a while before hauling myself to swim practice from 3:30-5:30. Mairead recently wrote about swimming and athletics, and I linked you above so you should check that out if you’re interested. After swimming I eat with the team and return to my room for homework (and TV is gossip girl, one tree hill, or house is on).

Now considering Monday, Wednesday, and Friday are different than Tuesday and Thursday, I guess I should better let you in on those days too. I have an early class at 8:05 those days: Physiological Psychology. It’s really interesting even though it’s early and long. I’m actually dissecting a sheep brain tomorrow! Which I think is cool as opposed to really gross. Anyway then that’s it for me. I usually go back to bed until lunch at 11:15 and do my work after that.

Now my schedule may seem like a piece of cake, but that’s just because I learned to organize it well. I can do a huge amount of my work on Tuesday and Thursday when I don’t have a lot of classes, and relax after a long day the other three days of the week. Making a schedule that’s perfect for you is relatively easy here, and it gets easier the longer you’re here because you get preference if you’re a higher class year.

Classes are scheduled differently on the M/W/F schedule than the T/Th, but fitting things in and taking what you want when you want to isn’t hard. If you’re a morning person (or a biology major) you can take classes starting at 8, 8:30, or 9:30. If not, 10 and 10:30 might be better. Typical classes are also scheduled for 11:45, 1, and 2:30 and the length of everything varies by class. A lot of times it depends on how many credits the class is or whether it has a lab or not. My 4 credit physio psych lab is 1 hour and 40 minutes, but my 3 credit fiction class is 50 minutes.

So I think I’ve covered enough for one day. As always, keep me updated on what you like, don’t like, want to hear more of, or want to hear about. Send me emails, facebook me (let me know you’re a reader so I don’t think you’re creepy), or even IM me at cea000@aol.com. I’d love to hear your questions about this crazy place I call my home.

Keep it real
-Christine

Sunday, September 21, 2008

A Weekend in Vermont

Hey everyone! So it’s another lazy Sunday here at Saint Mike’s, and I figured also the perfect time to catch up with everyone. This week went MUCH faster than the last, and we’re all just about settled into the schedule we’ve laid out for ourselves. That said, the weekend still came as a blessing. I think maybe a post about weekend activities here at SMC would be perfect to help you get the real-life feel of a student.

Almost every good weekend (or specifically
Saturday and Sunday) starts off with BRUNCH in Alliot. Ask any SMC student…brunch is the best meal. We’ve got French toast, pancakes, bacon, sausage, omelet bar, waffle makers, and all the usual breakfast specialties. AND you can also help yourself to lunch items like pizza or a hot sandwich and curly fries. Whatever you choose, you won’t be let down.

Now after brunch, depending on whether you forced yourself to get up and eat before Alliot closed, you might just go back to sleep. But, if you’re slightly more adventurous, you can shower and start your day. The perfect way to do this (if you’re not bound to the gym by your sports team...but more about that at another time) is to hit up downtown Burlington. I went down yesterday (for the first time this year, I couldn’t believe it) and did a little shopping around. In addition to fabulous shopping, Church Street has some of the greatest food (especially if you’re starving haha). We chose a place that recently opened up called Boloco Burrito and were not disappointed. A large burrito and a soda for $8? That’s a college student’s dream right there.

After we ate we piled back into the car to come back to campus and work on some homework before Saturday night came around. (And for good measure went to eat some wing bar in Alliot at dinner time.)

On a side note, if you have a car up here (second semester only for the first years), parking is free for 2 hours in the church street lots. But no car isn’t a problem either, because the bus is free and is about a 15 minute ride.

I also took time yesterday to enjoy the gorgeous Vermont scenery while the weather is still warm. I did some homework across the street on the lawn that overlooks the mountains, and there’s probably no need to say I didn’t do as much as I would have if I was in my room. But then again, I probably would have chosen a nap instead if I stayed inside. Anyway, that’s always a relaxing experience. It really is gorgeous here all year round, and yesterday was no exception.

So the bottom line is that no matter where you’re from or what you like, there’s always something for a student to do at SMC on the weekends. Sleeping in, shopping, sampling the local eateries, apple picking, hiking, going on a trip with the wilderness program, going to the waterfront, relaxing outside, doing homework, or watching football with friends, and endless more. Saint Mike’s is a place where you can feel at home no matter what you choose to do on the weekends.

I think that’s all for today. I encourage anyone and everyone to leave comments or send me an email at camoresano@smcvt.edu if you have questions you would like answered of if there’s a blog topic you wish I would cover. Parents and potential students alike, I would really love to hear from you (at least then I would know that someone other than my parents reads this…hi mom and dad.)

Keep smiling,
Christine :]

Friday, September 12, 2008

Hello!

Hey there!


Christine here, welcoming you to the first of many stories about my sophomore year here at Saint Mikes. First things first, I want to share a little about myself.

I hail from the one-square-mile town of Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey, located 5 minutes from Giant Stadium and 20 from midtown Manhattan. I enjoy swimming, skiing, singing, and being ridiculous. I’m a psychology major with no idea what I want to do with my life, but that’s ok with me. My daily activities include lots of swimming and eating, saying hello to everyone I know, and spending quality best-years-of-our-lives time with my friends.

I’m an avid watcher of Grey’s Anatomy, House, Gossip Girl, One Tree Hill, Jeopardy, and almost anything on the Game Show Network. My music selection is broader than a Border’s CD section, and ranges from Lil’ Wayne to Hanson and Bruce Springsteen to Girl Talk. I read as much as I can and my current favorites are the Twilight book series (yes, I’m one of those), and The Little Prince. My favorite movie is Beauty and the Beast and macaroni and cheese is the key to my heart.


My most recent accomplishments include scoring sweet housing in Founder's Hall with my fabulous roommate Sarah, joining the SMC swim team for another promising year, and hunting down a Sonic while on vacation with my family in South Carolina (check the photo!)




I can’t wait to share all of my experiences with you this year and hope you enjoy reading my page as much as I enjoy writing for you. Stay tuned for future installments and check out the pages of the other SMC bloggers.

Until next time,
Christine :]