Friday, February 20, 2015

Be Careful What You Wish For

Hello everyone and welcome to the weekend! As always, I'm excited to have a few days off to relax and catch up on work.  I'm also looking forward to this coming week for many reasons (one being the parent Knight Chat on Monday night).  Next week is winter break for Winooski High School, where I intern in an alternative classroom.  Though I really enjoy working there, I'm excited to have a few extra hours to myself next week!

Anyway, you may be wondering about the title of this post.  As you may have noticed at the bottom of one of my previous posts, I really love Sam Hunt (not to be confused with Sam Smith, though he's great too).  Naturally, when I found out he was coming to Higher Ground, a small but awesome venue just a few minutes from Saint Mike's, I simply had to go.  His show was scheduled for the day before Valentine's Day.  My friends Hanna (who I intern with) and Emma (my roommate for two and a half years) love Sam Hunt as well, so I thought it would be really fun to go as a Valentine's Day treat to ourselves.

Unfortunately, things don't always go as planned, as I know all too well.  I was a little too slow in buying my tickets, and by the time I got around to it (only a few days after they had gone on sale), they were sold out.  Needless to say, I was pretty bummed.  Despite various efforts to get tickets, it didn't work out.

Here's where the title comes in.  Instead of going to see Sam Hunt last Friday, I ended up going to Starbucks - and getting a delicious chai tea latte - with Emma and our friends Sarah and Cara.  We probably spent about two hours there just chatting and having a great time.  When I arrived back at my townhouse, my roommates were waiting for me to tell me they were having a "Merrill Appreciation Day" party since we never had a birthday party for me (yes, we are in college and still have birthday parties, complete with cake, candles, and presents, for each other).  Emma and the girls had been in on the surprise and had purposefully kept me out for a while.  Even though I later put the pieces together and figured out that I'd had many hints throughout the day, I was completely surprised.  More than that, I was overwhelmed with gratitude for my friends.  They got me my favorite snacks and dessert, and invited some of my favorite Saint Mike's people to come hang out.  I never thought I'd say this, but I'm actually happy I wasn't able to get Sam Hunt tickets.  I'm sure he will go on tour again!

I'm not blogging about this to brag about how awesome my friends are (ok, maybe I'm doing that a little bit).  What I really want to get across is that this isn't an uncommon occurrence at Saint Mike's.  My friends and I had a surprise party for one of my roommates Caitlin during our first year, and just a few weeks ago we had a surprise birthday party for our housemate Lauren.  I have met some truly incredible people during my four years here, and I am so grateful for them.  They have made my Saint Mike's experience exponentially better.  (Shout out specifically to my roommates Lauren, Alex, and Caitlin as well as Emma.  Love you all!)

Had to include this because it's super cute!
To all of the recently accepted students - congratulations!!  I hope that, if you decide to make Saint Mike's your second home, you will treasure your time here as much as I have.  It is truly a wonderful place and I can't imagine myself anywhere else.

Have a great weekend, and remember, just because things might not turn out as planned doesn't mean they won't be ok (or more than ok) anyway! :)

Thanks for reading!

PS This week I've been listening to a ton of different music, including Sam Hunt (obviously), Christina Perri, Paramore, and some film scores (thank you Caitlin for influencing my Pandora choices).

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Lit Choir Trip 2015

Hello everyone and Happy Saturday! Not that I don't love every weekend here at Saint Mike's, but I am particularly loving this one because it's going to last three days (we don't have classes on Monday).  I started off my weekend by going grocery shopping yesterday with one of my housemates Cait (which, believe it or not, is something I actually love doing).  Then last night, a friend of Cait's who she met when she was studying in Ecuador last spring came to visit.  It was great to meet him and be able to hear him talk about some of the awesome things he and Cait did on the Galapagos together.

This morning, Cait and I got up bright and early to go to Smugglers' Notch.  (As Saint Mike's students, we get a season pass to Smuggs for only $65, which is less than the cost of a one-day lift ticket!)  We were worried it might be a bit crowded, but we got there early enough that it wasn't bad at all.  We had a great time and returned home with enough time to hang out and get some work done this afternoon.

Taking a break before our last run!
Though my weekend is going well so far (except for the fact that everyone in my house misses our roommate/fellow blogger Lauren, who is home for the weekend), I wanted to write about how much fun I had last weekend on the annual Liturgical Choir trip.

As I have mentioned before, singing in the Liturgical Choir is by far my favorite thing to do on campus.  The songs as well as the people in the group bring me such joy.  For the past few years, the choir has gone on an annual trip.  Traditionally, we leave on a Thursday night so we can sing at two high schools on Friday to wrap up Catholic Schools Week (which also usually happens to end with the Super Bowl...yay Patriots!).  We get to hang out on Friday night, then sing at a few Masses on Saturday and Sunday before heading back to school.

This year's trip was a bit different.  We were supposed to leave for New Hampshire (my home state) on Thursday night.  Due to snow in the forecast, we were worried that the high schools we had planned to sing at wouldn't have school on Friday.  Since our first Mass on Saturday didn't start until 4, we decided to leave early Saturday morning.

The trip was also different for me because our first stop was actually at my home parish.  I have to say, it was a bit disorienting having my two worlds collide.  Still, it was a lot of fun and I was happy to be able to share what I am a part of at Saint Mike's with some people from back home.  My mom, dad, brother, as well as the girls I babysit for and their parents came to our Mass on Saturday afternoon.  One of my good friends Rebecca came to one of Masses we performed at on Sunday.  I was so happy to see them!  

Grace and Genevieve, the girls I babysit for

As much as I love singing in the choir, my favorite part of the (shortened) trip was being able to spend time with some awesome people, including my mom, Jerome (the choir director), Marianne (an SMC alum who I adore), and of course all the choir and ensemble members.

Marianne, Jerome, my mom, and me
Me, Sarah, and Emma in my church!
Getting to be with these people, even if only for two days, reminded me how grateful I am to consider them part of my Saint Michael's family.  Being part of the choir is so special to me, and as much as I don't want to leave the consistency of seeing them each week, I know that I will always be welcomed back (thank you Marianne for being an example of that for me!).

To all of the students who've decided to make Saint Michael's their new home (I've been able to talk to a few of you on that!), congratulations!  I hope you can all find something on campus that makes you feel as welcome and happy as being part of the choir makes me. :)

Have a wonderful rest of the weekend, and stay warm!