Lean Mean & Green Throughout 2012

My juicer

My juicer

Unfortunately, I’m not talking about money. Although I have had really cool jobs this year. I’m talking about vegetables!

I’m really proud to share with you that I haven’t gotten sick throughout 2012! Unless I catch a cold this month, it will have been a solid year.

I got into the green smoothie craze and haven’t felt better. Most recently, I bought an inexpensive juicer, which makes equally sweet drinks.

I highly recommend getting a book on veggie smoothies or checking out Kris Carr’s work. I am saving tons of money on allergy medicine because my symptoms dropped. I’m also stronger though seasonal changes, which would also leave me stuffy.

A collage I made for a friend

A collage I made for a friend

Have I done anything else? I no longer drink milk and avoid dairy. There’s lots of delicious alternatives like almond and rice milk. I also drink lemon water and save on buying organic. Learning about balancing your pH levels is really helpful.

Want to know some of the other benefits? Calm in the morning and sleeping easily at night. Greens in the morning help me feel awake without feeling nervous (although sometimes I will enjoy a cup of coffee) and when I go to bed I’m spent without insomnia.

Another thing that has helped me, particularly with my parents’ health situations? The healing power of ART. I make collages, gift packages for my sister, and I’m even working on my own website (very frustrating work, but I keep putting this off!). I’m excited for my website to show my projects, writing, and original videos. It’s gonna be cool.

From Baltimore to New York

UMB

University of Maryland, Baltimore

Long time guys. Totally my bad, but I know you know the circumstances. My Dad was released four days before Hurricane Sandy and when I found out NYU hospital lost power on their generators and Goldman Sachs was still powered up, I was upset. I can’t imagine what that felt like to have a newborn or family member in that situation. People carried patients out! How brave!

I’m so happy to have Dad home. It took him many weeks to feel less loopy, but this past weekend at a check up the doctor said he is free to go back to work and exercise when he feels ready. Freedom is the best gift.

My aunt and uncle came to visit, which was a big help. They left before Thanksgiving and my family had a nice, quiet dinner.

Later on, I visited my sister in New York. We went to Central Park and SoHo and had a great time.

UMBC hosted a really amazing Election Night Extravaganza and I’m glad I was there for that historical moment with old and new friends. There was games, food, Twitter, TV, delegates and representatives speaking!

I’m going to cool event in NYC this weekend, which I’ll post about :)

Voting experience

I voted last week early and was one of the few young people.

People in line were very friendly and positive. I was surprised. I seldom hear people from my town congregating and inquiring about one another. Many of the people had lived in my town a long time so the stories were about commuting to DC and employment. They observed the political signs around the public library and discussed the past storm.

I almost got applauded because I look like a first time voter…

The process was pretty simple. I didn’t mind waiting because it wasn’t that chilly. I signed up for Spring classes over my phone (my last semester!) and I only had to wait an hour with good conversation.

The large amount of early voter turnouts reminded me that people really care about my state and country. I was glad to be there and commiserate. It’s not the chore people make it out to be. I wish we got together more often to talk about what truly matters!

I also realize that as a woman, I’m really grateful to be able to vote. Each generation is so different and there are few ways to convince people my age to participate in democracy.

Making the Mistake

On the same thread as the last post, I’m learning a lot about giving up, giving in, letting go, trusting, and accepting.

As I was drafting these posts, I remembered a cool take on this subject from a sitcom. (I’m not huge into sitcoms either, bear with me!)

I happened to be watching How I Met Your Mother many months ago and came upon this interesting scene. It’s one where Lily decides to leave her current life and romantic relationship behind to pursue a buried dream. She goes onto call the dream a mistake that she has to make. Sometimes it’s said that there are no mistakes in life, but I think this thought process is more interesting

Okay, yes, it’s a mistake. I know it’s a mistake. But there are certain things in life where you know it’s a mistake but you don’t really know it’s a mistake because the only way to really know it’s a mistake is to make the mistake, and look back, and say, “Yep. That was a mistake.” So, really, the bigger mistake would be to not make the mistake, because then you go your whole life not really knowing if something is a mistake or not. And, damn it, I’ve made no mistakes! I’ve done all of this– my life, my relationship, my career– mistake-free. Does any of this make sense to you?

Many of my friends and mentors have asked me if under this stress I feel I’ve made the right decisions. I like not having a straight answer and maybe never will. I feel peace now and I will never regret giving myself that gift.

Thank you Tumblr

 

The Big Changes

So here’s the checklist of things I’ve dropped post-pheo (aka familial medical intervention)

Office job, WhoWeAm project, computer science course, IS web certificate, and doing anything I’m not absolutely enthusiastic about.

I had to make many changes fast because my dad’s condition will require a slow recovery so I tried to set myself up for the best possible two months. With the former agenda, I was experiencing serious stress and pains that were even physical. I took so many days off and nothing seemed to be working out.

I didn’t give myself the permission to be incredibly effected by the traumatic circumstances.

Check yourself before you wreck yourself.

Right now, I’m so relieved, but at the time, I felt like I was betraying myself. I dropped commitments and didn’t stick with my obligations. I only stayed with the activities that fulfill me and getting honest was nerve-racking. I got anxious over the free time I had, but then I was able to write great blog posts here and on usdemocrazy. I also took time out for myself to do fun things and I’ve never felt more free.

I have heard that “if you risk nothing, you gain nothing” and find such to be true this semester. What was your biggest break-up in college? What is the biggest thing you’ve ever had to quit?

Reply All Comic

Good news and bad news?

I realized I just posted on something tragic and it seems strange that something awesome could happen within the same week, but it did. I was offered a cool job (to start when I’m less stressed out) with an artist /entrepreneur /lawyer and UMBC alum. I was also offered full-time hire when I graduate, but let’s see how it goes first!

I’m excited because I’ve wanted to work for an online entrepreneur for about six months My interest started a year ago through a blog called Roots of She (also by an alum).

I always hoped to get any sort of job before I graduated, but this is something I’ve secretly really really wanted. The feeling is so different from being practical because it means coming to UMBC was for more important and fulfilling reasons.

My boss is too cool

Pheochromocytoma, anyone?

Long time no see!

I’m back after a serious medical intervention. My dad has been in the hospital for about a month and finally had a needed surgery last week. It was quite stressful, but the doctors say he is doing remarkably well. I’m coming back to reality. He will be recovering for a long while though.

My family came down to help out and they and my friends have been incredibly supportive. I never thought that this could have happened. This isn’t the first time I’ve had an emergency in college. Typically, I don’t feel comfortable talking about these things especially when it’s medical and personal, but to be honest, many people I know in college have gone through something like this and it’s part of the experience (if not part of the experience of life!). So as the weeks go on I might share more on the experience and how I’m doing. I’ve already had to make some big changes, but I’ll save that for another post. Many of the choices I made were scary to make so fast, but I feel like I’m leaving room for cool things to happen.

My favorite artist Kelly Rae Roberts. I’m reading her book now called Taking Flight.

This semester’s agenda

This semester is so avant-garde and maybe not necessarily in a good way.

I’m going to post as many pictures as I can to give you a better feel of my travels.

I take a bowling class twice a week until October. I’m still working at Academic Advising and will be shadowing another Enrollment office next month. Maybe Admissions!

Aside from my classes in Human Computer Interaction, Computer Science 100 (for dummies), and International Feminist Film (do you know who Alice Guy Blache is? She can take on DW Griffith any day), I am interning at UMBC’s IRC specifically on the WhoWeAm project.

My mentor Lee Boot is a super intelligent and creative guy. I’m so grateful I can work with new guerrilla film cameras and equipment! We’re working with non-profits who teach youth how to create meaning with media. One of the main goals of our project is to conduct interviews, which as you know from last semester, I love! I’m going to be holding a boom mic so I will develop serious arm muscles.

I guess the reason I’m nervous about this semester is because I’m not overachieving this time, by chance. I literally tried to and nothing panned out. But maybe doing the things I actually want to be doing and having more free time will allow me to make more sound decisions before Spring graduation.

21

Wednesday was my 21st birthday and I have not stopped. I’m so grateful to all the family and friends who called me and a fun-filled weekend ahead. Going to renew my license today, I realized it’s been five years since I first started heading into adulthood and it flew by. I feel much more grounded in my passions and who I want to be on a daily basis.

I’m going to create another post on what I’ve been up to lately. I will tell you though, that I’m having second thoughts about grad school… may just be nervous butterflies.

My best friend and long-time room-mate made me the g-free brownies ^. My girlfriends are making me dinner this weekend, all my favorites, and we’re watching movies like old times. These nights make me so glad I came to UMBC. After these few years, it’s nice to have a deep-rooted home.

Senior year!

Welcome back old and new! I can’t believe this is my fourth year on the blog. I just enjoyed lunch in the Commons (we have a new delicious veggie place) and I’m getting ready to go to another class. Yesterday wasn’t too exciting for me (I don’t have class on Wednesday and Friday, weird right?), but today is packed. I’ve caught up with many friends and managed to make new ones in my morning class.

I’m excited to share with you guys that I completed an REU over the summer at Iowa State. My morning class was in HCI (human computer interaction) and that was also my field of research over the summer. It was an intensive 10 weeks, but I learned so much and met people from all over the country. I’m also going to apply there for graduate school.

Hope everyone’s off to a nice start this week and enjoy the long weekend!