Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Family Weekend and a Spontaneous Monday

Good evening everyone!

As finals are approaching and the year is quickly wrapping up, it becomes increasingly difficult to stop and appreciate the smaller moments. Between papers, projects, and exams, students are trying to stay on top of their work.

However, it's important during times like these to take a few minutes to relax, and I was lucky enough to have my family come visit me during Parents Weekend. My parents and sister, as well as my aunt, uncle, and younger cousins, all joined me for a fun weekend at SMC with the Dean's Reception as the main event.

The Dean's Reception is an event held to recognize the academic achievements of students who made the Dean's List during the fall semester. The Dean and President Neuhauser speak, as well as a few honorary students, and there are light refreshments. Attending the event was also really interesting because various seniors were set up around the gymnasium to present the work they did for their Capstone projects, so the night also served as an academic symposium.

That was just one thing that was going on over Family Weekend. There were a lot of other events, both on and off campus, including student concerts, theatrical presentations, and a bowling night at our local bowling alley. I showed my family around campus, and we did tons of stuff around the Burlington area. I was surprised (and, as an avid reader, quite pleased!) that my little cousins' favorite part of the trip seemed to be the Word Garden right here on campus. They just got a kick out of it!

My youngest cousin, Giancarlo, writes on the chalkboard at the Word Garden. He also enjoyed playing with the word rocks and being able to physically create sentences. Such a good learning tool, for all ages--young and old, the Word Garden is a hit!

Some inspirational words found at the Garden, above and below.

It says, "Row the boat on the lake of enthusiasm."

Like I said, we also did a lot of things off-campus, like visit the Lake Champlain Chocolate Factory and a few local markets and eateries. My Aunt Cathy loved Church Street--it was her first time visiting!

I was so sad on Sunday to see my family leave--my room is now half-empty because I packed away a bunch of stuff for them to bring home that I know I won't need in my last few weeks. Between the empty room and the sadness of my weekend being over, I felt like a wreck on Monday! It was also a bit strange because I hadn't seen my friends for most of the weekend, so yesterday afternoon I visited my friends Shawn and Danny over in Joyce Hall--I knew everyone would be there because that's the usual hangout spot! Everyone there must have been in the same strange mood as me, because suddenly Cait suggested a trip downtown to Ben and Jerry's for a Vermonster and we were all jumping at the chance!

A Vermonster is the ultimate Ben and Jerry's challenge...20 scoops of ice cream, piles of whipped cream, tons of toppings, all inside one giant bucket. I was in a group with 5 other friends: Cait, Danny, Shawn, Tanya and Maya. It took all six of us over half an hour to finish eating it!

Those are some before and after photos. Everyone said that Shawn and I ate the most...I think they were right. Neither of us wanted dinner that night!

After we finished the challenge, we hung around on Church Street for a while. We had a great time!

Me, Tanya, Cait and Shawn sitting on the cow at Ben and Jerry's. Cows are Tanya's favorite animal!

Shawn, Danny, Cait, Tanya and Maya sitting on the rocks on Church Street--too full after all that ice cream!

We never really leave campus on a school night, so this was a truly special occasion. I felt bad when I got back because a few other friends missed out...but that just means we'll need to do the Vermonster again some other day. :)

So, that was my lovely weekend and awesome Monday. Since time is running down to the wire, I won't be as present for the next few days due to studying. However, I look forward to making a post this weekend! I think I'm going to make a post about housing. :) Until next time!


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