Everything, Grad School

Goals for 2016

Hi Everyone!

I know this seems like it’s coming super late, but I’ve really put a lot of thought into what I want to work on this year.

My year has started off rough, but I don’t want that to get in the way of the rest of the year.

This year, I only have a few goals I want to work towards, and here they are (in no particular order, except for the first one):

ONE // Be more brave

This is the biggest goal for me this year. So often lately, I have been scared to be myself, stand up for what I believe in, or do things (such as travel) that I would like to do.

This year, I will follow the example set by one of my former teachers, and I will be more brave. I will speak out when I see injustices happening. I won’t allow myself to worry about the opinions of others when it comes to being myself. I will take as many opportunities as I can.

This will be very difficult for me, but I will do my best to make it happen.

TWO // Prioritize learning

I’m only in my second semester of graduate school, and I will have three more to go after this one. I always try to prioritize my education, but I sometimes get so caught up in trying to score well that I sometimes forget to prioritize what I’m learning.

Going to school would be pointless if I didn’t learn anything, even if I graduate with a 4.0. Unless I feel like I’ve learned something, I might as well pause my education until I can prioritize my learning.

One of my favorite phrases is: if you focus on what you’re learning, high grades will follow.

THREE // Continue to build a healthy lifestyle

I think this went pretty well last year. I took important steps to make sure I’m focusing on my physical and mental health.

This year, I will bike and walk to work more (and in general), continue to drink lots of water, and continue to eat meals cooked at home.

FOUR // Read 25 Books

This goal is from my Goodreads challenge. Last year, I read 52 books with a goal of 50. This year, I’ve set the bar lower because I am a full time student.

FIVE // Focus on giving graciouslyCreed

This goal is crafted from a line in the Delta Zeta creed. Even though I am focusing on myself a lot this year, I don’t want to forget to love and give to others.

I will continue to volunteer more. I will listen to people who share their stories with me. I will give to others as much as possible.

That’s it for this year.

Last year went fairly well, so I hope I can make these goals happen this year!

I hope you reach all of your goals for 2016!



Being Big for Kids, Current Events, Everything, GA Adventures, Grad School, NaNoWriMo

My Year in Review: 2015

2015 was an awesome year for me.

Here’s some of what I did (in no particular order):

  1. I got accepted to grad school!photo
  2. I accepted a graduate assistantship with Family, School, and Neighborhood Engagement.photo 1 (4)
  3. I completed square dancing lessons and went through plus square dancing lessons.10945533_10205733396476823_249063993592293292_n
  4. I started clogging.IMG_5224.jpg
  5. I attended my first two professional conferences.12238121_10207929170329797_5391703298051292162_o
  6. My best friend got married, and I was her “Lady of Honor.”photo 5 (3).JPG
  7. I participated in the IUPUI Regatta.photo 2 (5).JPG
  8. I read 50 books. UPDATE! I’ve read 52 books, since I just finished Lending a Paw and Borrowed Crime by Laurie Cass.Goodreads Reading Challenge 2015
  9. I voted for the first time.12183954_10207845843046667_8556377505169139438_o.jpg
  10. I started knitting using a loom.photo 3 (2).JPG
  11. I biked to work for the first time.photo (2)
  12. I became VP of Membership for the alumnae chapter of my sorority.12314535_674288999379794_3357469934167776297_o.jpg
  13. I successfully completed my first semester of graduate school with a 4.0!photo 4
  14. We celebrated one year with our Little!12132485_10207711842376734_5082884238161835521_o.jpg
  15. Daniel and I celebrated one year together as a married couple!11160640_10207506329359037_7245455612742873513_o.jpg
  16. I participated in National Novel Writing Month (again).Me and Kayla writing during the first day of NaNoWriMo.
  17. And just because this picture gives me so much happiness… 🙂887410_10207864805360713_50468107508961177_o.jpg

I hope you had a wonderful 2015, and if not, I hope your 2016 is awesome!

Current Events, Everything, Grad School, Libraries

Updates: June 2015

Past & Present (3)Hi all!

I’m really sorry for the lack of regular posts here! I have been quite busy working on several exciting projects.

In case you were curious as to what I’ve been up to, here’s a list of what’s been keeping me busy:10370451_10206845155470103_4311544462465210458_n

One // Graduate School and Graduate Assistantship

I am very pleased to let you all know that I have been accepted to graduate school to study Library and Information Science! I have also accepted a position as a graduate assistant, where I will be able to work with several very awesome people.

Two //  Greenwood Merry Mixers Website

As some of you may know, my husband and I have started square dancing. Upon graduating from Mainstream lessons,we joined the Greenwood Merry Mixers. We soon realized that other than paper and indancers.org, there was no good way to find out club-specific dances, events, lessons info, etc. I volunteered to build a website and Facebook page for them and have been busy setting that up.

Three // Summer Reading

Summer is a super busy time for the Public Library system! June marked the start of our Summer Reading Program, which means that I’ve been spending a lot of my free time resting and making sure I don’t fall behind on the social media planning for the branch I work for.10339773_10206855242002260_6410754460398044019_n

Four // Delta Zeta

I recently accepted a volunteer VP of Membership position with the local alumnae chapter of Delta Zeta. Since accepting that, Ihave been building content for their website and preparing for one of our annual events.

Five // Big Brothers Big Sisters

Daniel and I have still been meeting with our Little regularly. The meetings haven’t been super interesting or detailed, but do expect a few posts from our past meetings!

I look forward to sharing my experiences with you as I enter graduate school and begin work as a graduate assistant!

Everything, Libraries, NaNoWriMo

My Year in Review: 2014

2014 was quite an interesting and jam-packed year for me.

Here’s some of what I did (in no particular order):

  1. I got married.
  2. 10469373_10204820749021207_3642174395043947195_nI graduated college.10372307_10203783494930503_788805432666866692_n (1)
  3. I started working at a job that will lead me to my future career as a librarian.10559826_10204448443393799_8855281968239146763_n
  4. I joined a sorority.1779709_10203300696580846_1738315318_n
  5. I completed the 100 Happy Days challenge.10438359_10204292761821857_4367586535198569635_n
  6. I completed a Mud Run.10253790_10203810478965087_185805523995482963_n
  7. I went back to England (where I studied abroad in 2012), and visited my best friend, friends from my study abroad experience, London, and Dover.10881695_10205427552070904_1623741020512548941_n
  8. I finished a journal for the first time.60671_10205360847203324_1370337100781811454_n
  9. I became a Big Sister/part of a Big Couple through Big Brothers Big Sisters.10392370_10205357125830292_8343976812616011101_n
  10. I started Square Dancing.1618561_10205160074104122_4574066075674137892_n
  11. I moved into my first “real” apartment with my husband.10885043_10205438670948869_5105261343330654992_n
  12. I completed NaNoWriMo.10521174_10205217335535622_685972538609730621_n
  13. I’ve read 36 books since the start of the summer. UPDATE! I have now read 38 books! The 37th book goes to The House of Hades and the 38th book goes to The Blood of Olympus, both by Rick Riordan.image
  14. I started this blog!

Thanks for reading about my year. How was yours?


Why I Joined a Sorority as a Senior

Firstly, I didn’t join a sorority that has been on my campus for ages.  I joined a colony (which is hard work); a sorority just coming to my university. Along with around 90 other women, I struggled to help my sorority establish itself on our campus.534081_10203342678792389_918174242_n

My situation is a bit unique. I started at my university at the age of fifteen while still in high school. When I graduated high school at sixteen, I started at my university full-time. I was young, and I was still developing my sense of self and what I valued. Sorority life wasn’t right for me at that time, but I was interested. I began to research the sororities at my university. I found a couple that I liked, but I wasn’t ready to join.

10155026_2502251313298_9209470050506734000_nIn general, sororities choose their members based on shared values, interests, cohesiveness with other sisters, and what each sister could bring to the organization. I was too young with too few life experiences to share with the members, and my age was probably a liability (though I’ve never confirmed this). I hadn’t developed a strong sense of values, and I hadn’t had much leadership or volunteer experience. More importantly, I didn’t know why I wanted to join a sorority. I just wasn’t ready.

My birthday falls over the winter, so I didn’t join a sorority when I turned eighteen. I didn’t join during my eighteenth year because I spent a semester abroad. So, it got to be the fall of 2013. I was nineteen, and Delta Zeta was colonizing at my university. This time, I was ready. After researching the organization, I found that my experiences led me to similar values. I connected with our Creed, which speaks of social justice, friendship, love, family, service, and scholarship. All of those things I valued already, and the Creed of Delta Zeta gave me a format to express my values.

1926836_10203325800968440_504362634_nI started hanging out with the other potential new members (colonizing looks very different from formal recruitment), and I absolutely loved them. We all share similar interests (volunteering, Harry Potter, food, etc.), and they were all academically driven.

I also had my “why.” Delta Zeta has a strong alumnae presence, especially where I live. Joining a sorority is a lifetime commitment, and I wanted a sorority where I could stay involved after graduation. I wanted a sisterhood with strong-willed, independent women who care for one another and for others. The more time I spent with Delta Zeta, the more I knew it was right for me.

The last reason I wanted to join is because Delta Zeta was colonizing. They were new to my campus, and they needed women to help create a lasting sisterhood at my university. My university’s slogan used to talk about leaving an impact, and this was my biggest chance. In the past years, I worked to help others. I did a lot of volunteering and leadership development. I did what I could to leave an impact, and I could use those skills and lessons learned to help make Delta Zeta a powerhouse at my university.

1966834_10203426925616493_605971851_nAfter joining, I was encouraged to help lead. I was selected as Secretary, which gave me the chance to help prepare a new-to-uni executive board for leadership while setting up my position to be taken by the next Secretary. I helped to edit the bylaws and created an attendance system while in my position. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t an easy year, but I am so proud of the sisterhood my sisters and I helped to create at my university.

My joining wasn’t a “Hail Mary” or a last-ditch effort to do something (trust me, I did a lot) or find sisterhood before graduating from university. I joined because the time was right, the organization was right, and the members were women I will be proud to claim as a sister for the rest of my life.

It’s not the right choice for everyone, but Delta Zeta was the right choice at the right time for me. That’s why there are tons of sororities–so we find the best choice.

My time as a sister didn’t end when I graduated. I joined Delta Zeta as a senior because I knew there was a lot I could do before I enter the flame eternal. As it was said to me before I became a sister… Choosing a sorority is like getting married. You get to dress up in white, make promises, have good times (and bad times), but in the end, you are bonded to these people for the rest of your life, and that’s the best part.10372307_10203783494930503_788805432666866692_n





Thoughts on Graduation

The seniors of Delta Zeta at my university. That’s me on the left.

Graduation is what every student looks forward to, right? It’s where students stop their formal education and begin on the journey towards “real adulthood.” Well, in my case (and in the case of some of my fellow seniors), graduation has terrified us. We aren’t afraid of going into the “real world”; we’re afraid of stopping our learning. I consider myself to be a lifelong learner, and the end of my formal education (until just over one year from now when I start graduate school) means that I need to find bigger and better ways to continue my learning. Around social media, I’ve seen statistics that some people rarely read once they graduate. I don’t know the validity of these statements, but in my personal experiences, that seems to be a true statement. Those statistics don’t reflect my post-graduation reading experiences (as I’ve read 10 books in the weeks since graduating), but I don’t want to lose my love for education. After some reflection, I realized that I probably should be learning more post-graduation than during my time at university. Think about it. I’ve spent about four years (sometimes more, in other cases) taking classes that will culminate in a degree. That’s only a small portion of the average lifespan. If all goes well with the rest of my life, I have decades to continue my learning. Why should I stop now? There is always something to study, and I don’t think graduation should be the end of my learning; it should be the beginning of my education as an adult in the “real world.”