Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Living In a Four-Person Suite

Last year, I lived in an 8-person suite in Pontigny.  Living with 7 other girls had its perks, but sometimes was just too much.  This year, I'm living in a 4-person suite in Canterbury.  The suite is much smaller, but we still all have our own rooms and we're getting along very well.  My suite has become something like my own personal posse.  Now, I'm not saying we're a clique, but it's nice to have a tight-knit group that I can eat my meals with, watch TV with, do homework around, and just hang out with.  We still have our own separate lives so we don't do everything together.  However, whenever the four of us do hang out, it's always a blast.
From left: Adrianna, Jill, Leah, and me! 
One of the secrets to our success is our suite contract.  At the beginning of the year, we sat down together and drafted a list of ground rules for our suite in order to maintain a respectful and relaxing atmosphere.  So far, it has worked out well.  By drafting the suite contract, we know each other's boundaries.  This way, we can solve minor disagreements and avoid big problems.  For example, it is understood that things put out in the common space are free to be used by everyone.  Certain things that are either labeled or otherwise specified to be someone's property can be used with the permission of that suite mate.  In the common room, "majority rules".  So, if the majority of people in the common room are studying, the suite mate who wants to Skype or watch TV (for example) should go into her room.   As far as cleaning the bathroom and buying certain groceries goes, we rotate that responsibility so it is not the same person doing those things every time.  
Now that we're into our fourth week of school, things are still running really smoothly.  As I'm writing, Leah and I are sitting in the common room together doing homework and occasionally chatting.  Jill is in her room doing homework and Adrianna just walked in to join us.  Our suite is fun, comfortable, and just plain wonderful.  I love it!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Back to School!

Sorry for the delay on the blog post! I've been busy getting moved-in and situated back here at SMC! Here's a bit of a re-cap of the past few weeks for me:
- I moved in with my brother on Thursday, August 28.  I am living in a four-person suite Canterbury Hall this year (one of the suites) and I am loving it! My suitemates are great.  I have been friends with all of them since freshman year, and since I started living with them this year, we have become even tighter (if that is even possible).  One of my suitemates, Adrianna, is the RA of our floor in Canterbury.  We all keep pretty busy with our schoolwork, but we make time to hang out as a suite too.  So far, we're having a lot of fun!
- I am working for Defender this year.  Today, we laid out our second issue.  It looks like the paper will be coming out bi-weekly for the most part.  It is hard work, but so much fun! Since I'm now in my junior year, most of my classes are focused in my major.  That means I'm in Bergeron A LOT.  I feel like I'm in my own little world.  Not only are 3 out of my 4 classes held in Bergeron, I also spend most of every other Sunday laying out the paper (from about 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.).  It's a lot of work, but I really like it.  Our staff is starting to become pretty close, and we've really learned to work together to get the paper done in time. The best part is we get pizza from Leonardos while we work! YUM!
- Like I said, most of my classes are journalism classes.  This semester, I'm taking Media and American Politics, Media Law and Ethics, Publication Editing and Design, and Honors Colloquium.  All of my classes are pretty busy, but VERY interesting.  My professors are so knowledgeable, and I am learning a lot already (and we're only in the second week!).  As usual, my planner is pretty full of assignments, interviews, reminders, etc., but I somehow find a way to get it all done.  Time management is key in college.  Now that I'm in my third year, I'm getting the hang of it pretty quickly.
- There have been some pretty awesome activities both on and off campus recently.  Last weekend, my suitemates and I went to the Champlain Valley Fair.  The fair is just up the road from school at the Champlain Valley Exposition and is usually happening right when students are moving back into school.  There are rides, animals, craft fairs, art demonstrations, food, and tons more! It is a lot of fun to go there for the afternoon.  The downside is that the rides are pretty expensive to ride, but there are so many other things to do that it is not that big of a deal.  While I was there, I saw all the animals, got a maple creemie (YUM!), and went to the craft fair.
This sheep tried to stick its head through the fence when I was taking the picture! So cute!

My three suitemates (from left, Leah, Jill, and Adrianna) at the fair!

This weekend, we all went to the Art Hop in Burlington.  The Art Hop is a weekend-long event where local artists put their artwork on display.  It is a pretty big event, and there are musicians and food vendors there along with the artists.  This year was the first year I attended the Art Hop, and I had a lot of fun! The art was really interesting, and the artists were all very nice to talk to.  Some of the artists were even doing demonstrations of their art form! It was a really fun and interesting event to attend. 

We took our picture in one of the mirrors hanging from the ceiling! Look at all the art around us!

Leah and Jill look closely at a piece of art.  It was a peacock made out of different kinds of paper. 

A spinning light in front of the building of lights!  There was easily over 200 different lights in the rooms.

Jill, Leah, and Adrianna turn to pose for a photo on our way to the next exhibit! 

This weekend was also the "Welcome Back" weekend on campus.  On Saturday afternoon, we had the Welcome Back Bash on the 300's field.  I performed with the tap club at the event, and the Acabellas and the Celtic Knights performed as well.  There wasn't a huge turn-out at first, but as the performances went on, more and more people came outside.  Saturday night was the night of the Hi-lighter Dance.  This dance is a black light dance, and everyone dresses in white t-shirts so they can be written on with hi-lighter.  The shirts look really cool in the black light! The dance was awesome! I went with a bunch of friends and just danced the night away! It was a blast.  

Well, there's the re-cap! I promise to post pictures of my suite soon so you can all get a glimpse of what upperclassman housing looks like.  I may also post a few pictures of my brother's room in Joyce so you can see some freshman housing as well.  Please feel free to email me (emurray@mail.smcvt.edu) with any questions or comments! Thanks!