Winter Isn’t the Enemy

When people hear me say I hate summer their eyes do that bug-out-of-your-face thing you see in cartoons.  I get it, I’m the minority not the majority, but there are other people who love winter too! For example, my roommate, which is pretty lucky since we have to agree on the temperature of our room. All I can say is that the window is always open and at night it gets cold enough to keep my water bottle chilled.

I’m here to convince all you non-believers that winter isn’t so bad and that it has more to offer than just the pretty white snow.  Being from Wisconsin, and right next to the lake, no less, the Table and I get some of the worst winters there are.  If you don’t know what lake effect snow is, you’re really missing out.  It’s a beast.  Here are my reasons for loving the weather from November to March:

1. Let’s start with the obvious one: snow.

Snow! Snow! Snow!

Here are a few pictures from the winter they cancelled school on six different occasions.  The first one is of my brother peeking through a tunnel we dug on the hood of a car.  The red thing in the second one is our car.  When we opened the garage door that’s how high the snow was.  The third one has the criss-cross imprint of our fence.  We moved the fence and the snow just stayed there because it was so heavy. You can see me in the background and it was almost higher than my waist.

car snow  garage snow  fence snow

When I was little I loved to play in the snow and if I still had a pair of snow pants that fit me I would lay in it and just look at the sky.  Even if you hate everything else about winter, you can’t deny that snow is beautiful.

2. Hats, mittens, and scarves.

Besides the fact that they’re super cute, hats are so fun to wear.  I’ll admit I often wear them around the house just for fun. And I say mittens because I don’t like gloves.  The way they separate my fingers feels like they’re making them colder not warmer.  Below is a picture of a scarf I wove that I’m particularly proud of. The scarf is laying on the next item of my list.

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3. blankets, slippers, and sweatshirts.

The blanket above is special to me because I got it in North Dakota the first time on a mission trip which I now do annually.  Don’t you guys just love curling up inside with a blanket and a movie?

4. Hot Chocolate

I’m one of those people who can eat ice cream year round, but hot chocolate is seasonal.  I don’t like coffee but that can count too.  A warm drink is just ten times better when it’s cold out and you can feel it warming up your insides.  Doesn’t this picture look like it could be a Starbucks add?

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5. Seeing my breath and letting the tips of my ears get red.

I once heard someone compare seeing your breath to feeling like a dragon which I thought was funny, but I think it’s more like seeing my life.  This is evidence that I am alive, and every part of my body is buzzing with the cold.  And then you go inside and press your palms to your ears and you can feel them thaw.  I love that.

6. But one of my favorite parts is the smell.

I could go one forever with this list: ice skating, snow days, icicles, but I always get most excited by the smell that tells me winter is coming. It’s not so much a distinct smell as it is just crisp air.  When you breathe is deeply and it smells cold and fresh.  That’s one of my favorite parts.  So for all you winter haters I hope there’s at least one thing on this list that convinced you to hate the season maybe just 1% less.  Now it’s your turn to convince me why I should like summer.

#2 Dude This Class I’m In…

Sucks. It’s Math 112, aka ALGEBRA!!

Let me start by saying I’m really not dumb… I got a full ride to Madison, so that must take some intelligence, right? But about this math class…

So back in April we had to take a placement test to see which math and English classes we would be taking to start our college career. I took the test on an early Saturday morning (I HATE MORNINGS!) and needless to say I was tired, even though I made sure to go to sleep at a reasonable hour the night before. I’m taking the test and realize that it is actually really hard, like the ACT all over again. I somehow manage to finish the test without having to randomly fill in bubbles on my Scantron within the last 2 minutes of the time allotted, but I’m still not confident in my scores. I get the scores in June, right after graduation. After looking at the Algorithm, I realize that if I had scored 6 more points (out of 840), then I would be taking Calc. 1 which is what I wanted, being that I’m a Biomedical Engineering major. ONLY 6 MORE POINTS!!!! *Insert angry face*

Immediately I call the advising office to see if the math department is lenient about scores since I was so close; I get a cheerful “Yes! You should be fine, don’t worry about retaking it.”

July comes around and I come to Madison for orientation. I ask about my scores and the advisor IMMEDIATELY tells me that I have to retake the math test. And I’m looking at her like “Bish whet?” -___- She gives me the option to take it that day, or take it next week, OR take it during welcome week when I move in. Taking it that day wasn’t going to work because I wasn’t prepared. And taking it next week was impossible because I had a flight to catch for Cali the same day. So I just decide to stick with what I have. The “my life sucks” feeling set in rapidly.

I get to Madison optimistic about the course. I walk into what looks like a computer lab for class, and it comes to my attention that the ENTIRE class is online. There are 3 different lecture sections in one class. There’s NO PROFESSOR! The 3 TA’s for each lecture rotate everyday between who is going to cover a few topics.

Okay so about the class specifically. It’s 3 credits, and I have to take it for my major. There are about 100 people in the class. We meet on Tuesdays & Thursdays for an hour and a half. And it sucks terribly. We get homework every time we come to class, which was expected. The issue is that I’m teaching myself. The TA’s go through maybe 1-2 topics out of the 13-15 we were supposed to read about in the homework. To make things worse, they go over the easiest concepts, and put the hardest ones on the quizzes and exams. I got a 62% on my first written exam and a 80% on my first online exam. So you can see how this is an issue for me. I’m used to getting straight A’s. What the hell is an F? The written exam was the STRUGGLE. There were 4 questions, we had an hour to do it, no calculator was allowed, and NO PARTIAL CREDIT. What in God’s name are they thinking?! So yeah, that’s why I got a 62%. I would most definitely not ever recommend this class to anyone, ever. But I’m going to have to suck it up if I want to major in BME. The struggles of Mia…

Wisconsin: Cows and Commuting

Hello cyberworld!  I’m Megan.  Of my table comrades, I’m the only one who chose to stay not only very close to home, but to live at home.  I’m a commuter student at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  I’m in the College of Nursing, and I’d like to hopefully minor in Spanish for the Health Professions.  Now, since I don’t have any cool move-in stories for y’all, I’ll just tell you a little bit about my college experience so far.

On the Wednesday before school started, I attended an event specifically for commuters.  My mom dropped me off, and even though I would be seeing her in a matter of hours, she still started crying.  She managed to calm down before I got out of the car, but then she told me that after I left, she started blubbering like a baby again.  Any who, I got out of the car, walked into the Alumni Memorial Union (AMU) and looked around like a typical freshman. Thankfully I found a few other people heading to the commuter lounge and just followed them to the event.

So orientation went well, I met people during small group.  Even though the college claims we’ll be friends forever, I’m pretty sure I’ll never speak to any of them again, blah blah blah.  Since I don’t live on campus, it can be really easy for me tofeel like I don’t belong anywhere, which is where the Commuters Lounge comes in!  On the third day of class I hiked up my big girl panties and walked in so I wasn’t eating alone (which, contrary to Anissa’s belief, is not sad, it’s actually relaxing).  Over the past week or so, I’ve gotten to know some pretty awesome people.  I’ve also learned a new card game for when the Table reunites (get ready for Polish Poker everyone!).

While it does seem like being a commuter takes a lot of work, I’m actually really enjoying living at home.  I can come and go on campus as I please, even though I am at the whim of the Milwaukee County Transit System.  And since I don’t have anywhere to go and  just chill out on campus, I get a majority of my homework and reading done for the next day while I’m still at school.  Which means when I go home, I get to do whatever I want ( watch trashy reality television).

That doesn’t mean I don’t plan on being involved.  Marquette has a ton of great service opportunities, many of which I hope to take advantage of.  I’m also an automatic member of the Marquette University Student Nurses Association, a club that does fun get togethers to do service and do other nurse-y stuff.  I’m also going to be a member of The Stitch Society, which is a knitting and crocheting club.  I’m sure there’ll be more clubs in the next four years, but I’m going to stick with two for now!

All in all, I’m really excited to see what the next four years have in store for me

So as a part of this post Michelé has asked each of us to write three goals for the year.  Here are mine:

  1. Volunteer with Marquette at least twice a month.
  2. Save at least $500 to go to Peru my junior summer.
  3. Become involved with one student organization.

Megs and her parents Aug 2014

Megan and her parents

Wisconsin Madtown Standards

Ya’ll let me tell you about the FINEST boys at UW- Madison. I lied, there’s only a couple… Well maybe I should start at the beginning. I moved in on August 24th, and I was so ready to go. I woke up at 6:00 in the morning to make it there by 8:00 when check-in started. Ya’ll should know how I am about being on time… My dad’s prissy self decided to get all dressed up and whatnot and we ended up being an hour late . But the 24th was early move-in day for everyone who had a scholarship so there was no line and it was hella chill. We had this TINY elevator that could literally only fit our cart full of stuff (we couldn’t fit in with the cart). So we had to race up to the 3rd floor to get it off of the elevator. Lmao, what a struggle. I walked up to my room and the RA had our door decorated really cute. I opened the door and entered a shoe box; it seemed SO small. I had a mini panic attack because I had 5 suitcases worth of clothes and countless other miscellaneous dorm items (it took my dad’s van and mom’s car to get all of my stuff here).

My mom and sister cleaned my bathroom (yes, we have our own bathroom… AND AC!) while I put the clothes away. And we snuck Osita (my dog) into the room via my purse so she was chillin’ like usual. My dad hit it as soon as he unloaded the van. Didn’t even cry or anything. Lol he must really love me huh. Kay-Jah, my roommate, hadn’t arrived yet so that was nice. Otherwise I would’ve been too claustrophobic and hot. Ya’ll know I like my space. I ended up being able to fit everything comfortably so that was nice. And I still had room left over to add more stuff!

Noon comes around and Kay-Jah finally shows up with her mom and younger sister. Our families are literally identical. It’s crazy. I went with my mom and Kay-Jah’s mom to Walmart to get some last minute items, and I ended up getting to know her family a lot better. It was great to finally meet the girl I’d been texting since April.

As far as actual school goes, it’s fantastic. Being that UW-Madison is my first public school ever, I was initially overwhelmed by the 40,000+ students here. But that changed almost instantly when I realized that I knew at least 65 girls from my high school. As of now my majors are Biomedical Engineering & Spanish. I’m also on the pre-med track. I LOVE the classes I’m taking, and most excited about the student organzations that I hope to join. Greek life has always been a priority, but I’m going to wait until next year to rush. I’m also joining NSBE (National Society of Black Engineers) to help with internships and job opportunities. I even met Keven Stonewall! Aka, the best man alive. Aka the guy who most likely found the cure to cancer. Click the link to read his story.

http://newsone.com/3041045/keven-stonewall-colon-cancer/

My goals for this year are #1) not to get lost on campus after 9:00pm. Madison is relatively safe, but there are some serious creepers on campus. But I shouldn’t have to worry much, I’ve got pepper spray to take care of that it necessary. #2) I want to maintain a 3.5 cumulative GPA. Being that the lowest GPA I can have in order to keep my full-ride scholarship is a 3.0, I should maybe strive to be higher than the minimum. And #3) I want to make SO many friends and connections. I’m finally realizing how people you meet in college may one day be your boss. So being nice is the way to go 🙂

Alright so I gotta go. That’s been my life in a nutshell. I actually need to start going to sleep before 2am. So this is my que. See ya later guys 🙂

Mia and Bucky Aug 2014       Mia and Kay-Jah and Friend Aug 2014

Mia and Bucky                                                                           Mia and her roommate Kay-Jah and other friend