Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas

Hi! I'm sorry I've been gone forever. Things got harder at school as the semester drew to an end, and time flew by.

But I'm back home now, with a little more time on my hands. I repeat, a little, not too much more, because I'll only be home for two weeks and there are a million things that I need to get done. At least I can say that I'm home. After the initial scare of having my flights canceled, my parents were kind enough to buy me a very expensive Christmas gift: another plane ticket so I could come home. I managed to only get here 12 hours later than expected. I am very thankful for what my parents did for me, and I am very sorry for everyone who is stuck somewhere at an airport, spending Christmas away from their family.

I just want to take the time to wish everybody a Merry Christmas. I hope everyone has a wonderful time with the people they love. We should all take the time tonight and tomorrow to be thankful for those sitting around the table with us. We don't always all get together to appreciate each other, to talk about our accomplishments, but I think now is a great time for us to appreciate each other, and to be happy that we have each other to share the holiday season with.

It's at times like these that I wish I had the best of the 2 worlds (or 3, however many there are in my life) in one room. I wish I could share our Christmas traditions with my boyfriend, my host family and a few of my friends at school (even though some of them are Jewish). I wish I could see some of the people I met in Argentina, even those I haven't talked to in a while.

Tonight, I'll be thinking about all the different people I wish I could share my meal and traditions with. I hope everyone does too.
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Monday, November 15, 2010


I'm kind of nervous for registration tonight... It doesn't make sense to be, because I can't do anything to change what might happen. You know, other than assuring I have a fast internet connection and that I register right at 7pm. I hope one of those 4 spots will have my name on it tonight.

Now, the question became should I take Gospel Choir next semester. We need 4 credits of creative expression, and this 1-and-half-hours class takes care of 1 credit. Since we have to take all 4 credits on the same medium, I'd have to take it another 3 semesters after that. There are other classes that would give me the 4 credits right away in one semester with only 3 hours a week. The thing is they tend to overlap with the times of all the labs I have to do for my major. There will be a pottery class in the fall next year, that I might try to take, but I'm scared, because I don't know how good I'll be at it... It just seems so hard, and I feel like I am not creative enough to do this...

Think I might just sign up for it, go see how it is, and if I don't like it, I'll drop it later.

Now, off to lunch! :)

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It's been way too long!

It's been way too long since I last posted! I've been thinking why and I think it might have been the fact that I was trying to post stuff all the way back from when I first got to the States, rather than more recent and interesting stuff.

I've spent the last couple days just thinking about blogs and I actually went back to Google Reader and read the 700+ blog posts that I hadn't read since school started... Google Reader has been my escape from the school world... Things have been a little rough the last couple weeks.

I've had no motivation whatsoever to do things, I've been sad and cranky, and I've been a downer for people around me, especially my boyfriend. He's been great about it, trying to make me feel better and a little more at home. But sometimes, you just need that hug from mom and dad...

I don't even really know what I've been so cranky about, but my guesses are:
  • Stress
  • Lots of work
  • Homesickness (a little bit)
  • Lack of motivation in general (it's been a vicious cycle)
  • Not going to the gym
  • Starting to get as messy as my roommate (that's bad, really bad)
  • Not having as much time for myself as I wish I would (now, I'm making that time at the expense of homework time - not a smart move at all, but I'm hoping it will calm me down and allow me to focus on anything for longer than 5 minutes again)
  • Being indecisive about my majors/minors (I don't even know anymore... - I started out as a Biology major, and just a couple weeks ago I added a Biochemistry major, and then it all fell apart as I started thinking what that really involved, how much work that will be, so I've been talking to people about it, and they all seem to agree that I should drop the Biochemistry major and do a Chemistry minor instead - that might help to take some of the stress away)
  • Being so stressed about grades, not just the amount of work (I hate how GPA is such a big deal, it's like each and every step you take in your college career needs to be thinking about the future and acceptance in grad school, or med school or law school... People have stopped taking classes they like to take classes they think will look good on their transcript. That's not me, I just want to enjoy my college years and learn for the sake of learning, of knowing more, of improving myslef... Spanish class really has got me thinking about it with the Pedagogy of the Opressed of Paolo Freire)
  • Stressing over future internships in the summer (they really recommend that we do a few internships before graduating, so we get experience before actually trying to get in the work place and to see if that is really what we want to do in the future, as well as all the networking advantages that come with an internship)
  • Planning out my schedule for the Spring (I register tomorrow evening and there are only 4 spots left in the Genetics class I have to take to be in good shape to fulfill all the requirements for my major(s), as genetics is a prerequisite for most classes from now on)
I feel like there's just way too much going on right now... I've been going to Career Services presentations/webinars/information sessions on how to find internships, the importance of these... I've been complaining about not going to the gym, or how I haven't done my dishes, or how my room is mess... But I feel like I haven't been doing anything to change that. I feel like I haven't put enough effort into getting things done, which then makes me more depressed. So, this has just been a cycle for two weeks, in which I've started to feel less beautiful, in which I've been mad at myself for not getting things done, for feeling a little depressed and for just sitting in front of work thinking about things that don't make sense.

So, what I want to do is to start being better, getting things done when they need to be done, being productive, being nice to everyone, smiling more, and hopefully, start writing on my blog again. It's interesting how getting all this down just helped me calm down and realize there is a way out of this mess. Blogging always makes me feel better, I really don't know why I don't do it more often.

Thanks for reading to the end, and I'm sorry this was a lengthy post, but I had to get it off my chest, get it on "paper," I mean screen, and feel better about myself.
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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Eu conheci o Gladwell!

Em Outubro, o autor de Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell, de que falei aqui veio a nossa universidade. Gladwell veio falar-nos sobre o potencial humano e de como este e desperdicado. Ele apontou a pobreza e a atitude das pessoas como as principais razoes pelas quais as pessoas desperdicam o seu potencial. Como exemplo deu os filhos que deixam a escola para irem trabalhar para ajudar a sustentar as suas familias. E depois, tal como indicou no seu livro, a atitude das pessoas face ao trabalho que e necessario para alcancar um fim, seja ele responder a um longo questionario ou a tratar dos campos onde se cultiva o arroz. Foi bastante interessante e ele teve possibilidade de se explicar melhor e expor mais examplos durante a sessao de perguntas. E no fim, la pudemos ir conhece-lo e pedir que nos autografasse o nosso exemplar de Outliers. Foi uma tarde para consolidar o que aprendemos no livro!

Depois do autografo, pedi-lhe se sorria para a fotografia... Aqui esta ele! (Se nao soubessemos quem ele era, acho que poderia ter passado por um aluno mais velho...)

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Monday, July 26, 2010

Coisas que me chamaram a atencao

Aqui vao duas coisas a que achei graca quando cheguei. A primeira e num Burger King. Simplesmente gostei do modo com que nos pedem para mandarmos fora o nosso lixo. "Toss it in. Drop it in. Slide it in off the tray. Just get your trash in here some way."

A seginda fotografia e dos carrinhos das compras para os mais pequnitos num supermercado (creio que era o Giant mas nao tenho a certeza). Estes tem uma bandeirinha que diz "Customer in training". Na altura achei piada, mas depois pus-me a pensar que eles sao realmente uma sociedade consumista. Ate treinam os pequeninos para se tornarem um dia "grandes" consumidores.

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Lobster Risotto! and Orientation

Antes do primeiro ano universitario comecar a serio, houve uma orientacao de 5 dias na universidade. Para nos, novos alunos, foi uma oportunidade para conhecer os colegas, alguns professores e funcionarios da universidade. Para a escola, foi uma maneira de nos dar a conhecer as regras, para nos aconselhar a tomar decisoes sensatas, enfim para nos dizerem que estava na altura de termos juizo. Entre teatros, discussoes de um livro que nos pediram para ler antes de ir (Outliers de Malcolm Gladwell) e uma conversa com um senhor que ja tinha sido alcoolico (Mike Green se nao me engano) la nos foram lembrando que nao temos idade para beber, que nao devemos julgar os outros pelas suas origens ou orientacoes sexuais, entre outras coisas. Quanto ao livro ensinou-nos que ha que continuar a insistir, mesmo quando as coisas nao correm bem. Gladwell da varios exemplos e afirma que com 10 mil horas a "treinar" ou a fazer a mesma coisa, nos podemos tornar-nos verdadeiramente bons nessas coisas.

Mas voltando dois diazinhos atras... Nos dias de aniversario da mae e do pai fomos comer a um restaurante ao fundo da rua da escola, o Johansson's. Devo dizer que neste restaurante comi a melhor refeicao o tempo que estive nos Estados Unidos. Comi uma saladinha e a seguir um risotto de lagosta. Digam la que o risotto nao tem um optimo aspecto?

Enfim, ainda fui la ver se tinham quando acabei o primeiro semestre. Achei que merecia no fim dos exames, mas ja nao serviam este prato. Nao sei se a lagosta tambem tera uma estacao apropriada para ser comida. Hei-de espreitar outra vez quando voltar para o outro lado do charco!
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Saturday, July 24, 2010

Vamos la ao que interessa! :)

O objectivo do blog era partilhar as aventuras por terras estrangeiras, portanto vamos a isso. Ja vem com um ano de atraso, mas nao deixam de ser fotografias que tirei nos primeiros meses que estive nos 'States'.

Apresento-vos o Whiteford Hall, o edificio onde vivi este primeiro ano!

Tambem tirei fotografias do quartinho que dividi com uma menina de Rhode Island.

O que tinha e o que esta a vista, uma secretaria, uma prateleira na parede (considerada um luxo, dado que penso que so existem nos quartos dos alunos do primeiro ano. Talvez a partir dai nao sejam precisos os livros, mas um sitio para por a impressora continuava a dar jeito), uma cama, uma pequena comoda, um roupeiro, uma cadeira, e um mini frigorifico e microondas. E nao, com muita pena minha, os pais e o mano nao faziam parte da mobilia.

E estas foram as primeiras impressoes que tive da universidade. O McDaniel College acabou por ser uma boa escolha, talvez ate excelente. Acabei por me sentir em casa neste quartinho pequenino.

Estou convencida de que havia uma fotografia de como o quarto estava no final do ano, mas nao a consigo encontrar. Se algum dia aparecer por obra e graca do Espirito Santo terei o cuidado de a postar no blog.

Mas posso confessar que me recusei a por coisas na parede do quarto ate ao segundo semestre. A minha colega de quarto passava a vida a perguntar porque. Penso que era porque em casa as paredes do meu quarto nao tinham posters ou fotos, ou qualquer outros adornos que so ganham po. Tambem estou a ser mazinha, nao e bem assim, mas era assim que eu encarava a situacao no principio. Eu e a minha colega de quarto, a Kaitlyn, acabamos por comecar com a piada de que la para Maio a minha parede havia de estar decorada. Eu la brincava que talvez em Agosto (quando comeca de novo o ano lectivo).

Enfim, nenhuma de nos acertou, acabou por ser em Fevereiro (com apenas algumas fotografias) e a coisa compos-se em Marco quando eu decidi por na parede todas as fotografias que levei comigo e todos os postais que me foram mandando. Desde o Castelo de Ourem, passando pelo Santuario, um ursinho com uma flor da mae, uma foto antiga de bacalhaus que a tia Lucena mandou pela altura do Natal e as fotografias da graduacao e do jantar de finalistas do Lincoln, a parede compos-se.

Mais historias hao-de vir!

Welcome back!?

I'm back! Today I just had this sudden urge to blog again. I don't know if it was going to Billy's blog, Angel's blog or learning about Zemanta in a Blogger Newletter. But something in me just wanted to come blog and try this new feature. Zemanta seemed so interesting with all its recommendations of pictures and links. This video just made me wanna download it and see for myself how cool it is.

Yes, I know this wasn't the topic to test Zemanta's capabilities, but I figured it would get me started. Now, I can go blog some more and figure out how this really works.
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