Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Tarrant/Ross

      "Ahhhh the smell of sweaty gym socks and rubber floors in the morning." Probably the only place that you will ever hear that on campus is in the Tarrant/ Ross Sports Center here at SMC. Let's break it down a little more.
        Lets start with Tarrant. It's more formal name is the Jeremiah J. and Kathleen C. Tarrant Student Recreation Center. It was a $5 million project and was dedicated in October of 1994. On my tours, I like to say that Tarrant is more of our recreational side of our sports complex. It houses our field house which has 4 indoor courts that can be used to basketball, volleyball or tennis. It also has a 1/8 of a mile indoor track. It is also home to 3 racquetball courts and 1 squash court.
     On the second floor of this lovely building is where our weight room is located. In there we have everything you may need to get that body you've always wanted to impress your Alliot crush. Also on the second floor is a dance room. Obviously in the dance room people dance, but they also offer amazing fitness classes during the week such as Zumba, Yoga, RIPPED and Barre Fitness. The awesome thing about these classes is that it only costs $15 for 6 weeks of one class, which is insanely cheap.

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    Then there are the things that people don't know about the second floor. Our athletic department is housed up there as well as coaches' offices and the viewing deck for the pool.
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     Back down to the main floor we go! When you first walk into the building you will notice a desk to your left. That is where the lost and found is located as well as the place that you can go to borrow sports equiptment (such as basketballs). The Hall of Fame Room and Rec Rooms are also on the main floor.
     One of the unique things about the main floor of Tarrant is that there is a 2 story indoor climbing wall. It is sponsored by our Wilderness program and they do an awesome job of running it. Personally, I have never climbed it, but I have 2 years to change that! It looks like so much fun and everyone always says how great it is.
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     When you are all done with your time in Tarrant you go through this wall of doors and TA DA! you are in Ross! Ross, to me at least, is our more varsity side of our sports complex. In here we have our main basketball court, varsity weight room, swimming pool, trainers offices and our trophy cases.
     The trophy case in Ross has to be one of my favorite spots on campus. It is really cool to look at all of the amazing things that our athletes here at SMC have accomplished. But I do have to be honest, my favorite part of the trophy case is all the way at the end towards the doors facing the library. There you will find our rugby banner from when we were champions of Rugby Northeast in 2012. 
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     The main part of Ross sports center is our main basketball court. This is where all of the home basketball and volleyball games take place. It is also where a lot of orientation activities happen as well as our spring concert. Last year we had Macklemore and Ryan Lewis and it was truly incredible! 

     Also towards the back of the basketball court is a staircase that leads to our varsity weight room. It is reserved for all varsity teams and is normally locked. They use this instead of the normal weight room so that it doesn't get too clustered. 
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Love,
Susanna

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Monday, April 14, 2014

Monday Motivation: Transitions.

     Spring is finally here. It is actually really funny because most days it is only about 50 degrees and you will  still see people walking around campus with shorts and t-shirts on. I suppose that is what you get when you go to school in Vermont. Winter started a little early here and boy was it a doozy. It was bone chilling cold for the majority of November, December, January, February and March. The change in season is a much awaited change and I am so glad it has finally arrived. 
     To go along with the changing of the weather (thank goodness!) my blog has undergone some changes as well, as you have probably noticed. When I first started writing almost 2 years ago (wuuuuuttttt) it was kind of a collection of random things. There were some posts about my room, some about my classes and some about life. It soon became a place for me to just talk to people about anything and everything. Sometimes I give school tips, life tips, music reviews, makeup reviews or just talk about life. I like the place that my blog has started to move towards.
     As you can probably tell, I have started a couple of "theme days". Actually, I only have one, but hopefully in the near future I will add more. Monday Motivation is a way for me to just talk about certain themes and how they relate to my life at the moment. They almost always end up connecting to something SMC because, well, that is currently where I am located/living/loving. 
      I basically just go off on random tangents of things. But its whatever. I enjoy tangents. Just trying to keep you on your toes, ya know?
     While this blog changes all too often, be it its content or appearance, one thing is for sure- it follows me throughout life and perfectly mirrors all of my changes; all of the ups and occasional downs I have experienced. 
     It is kind of funny how there are some posts that I get a ton of readers and some where it is almost like the post never existed. But, oddly enough, it doesn't bother me. I mean, I totally accept that people don't have to like or enjoy what I write. In my mind I like to think that this blog could be perfect for everyone but that is obviously incorrect. Just let me say that if it may not be your cup of green tea now, it might be your cup of earl grey tomorrow. 
     The coolest thing about this blog is that it is all mine. Sure, I write it for all of you lovely people to read, but writing it is what truly makes me happy (but I am totally happy that when you read it you get happy as well). 
     One thing to keep in mind is that this blog will never have a niche. Sure, I think I am the only blogger for SMC that plays rugby, so naturally, I talk about that a lot, but for the most part, nothing I write makes sense with everything else I write. So if you are still reading this blog- despite what I am writing about- thank you. No matter what I am writing about or whether there is one or one thousand people reading what I have to say, I appreciate you for listening to what I have to say. Thank you again for being with me for all of these transitions. I can't tell you with certainty what the next couple of weeks, months or years, but I can tell you that I am so unbelievably grateful for all of you that have stuck with me this far. 


[all of the rugby ladies are so happy it is finally nice out!!!]


Happy Spring everyone! 

Love,
Susanna

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Monday, April 7, 2014

Monday Motivation: Happy.

     Without a doubt, some days are much better than others. There can be some weeks where everything is all fine and dandy and others where all I want to do is curl up in my bed and do abolutely nothing. Sometimes there can be an in-between, but it is not nearly as common as the other two. 
     Many people say that happiness is under your own control. You control your own happiness. After bad days, hard tests or late night studying, it is best to not dwell on the bad but rather go and do something to make you happy. 
     It is sad that all too often when something goes wrong, we as humans, at way to quick to point fingers or break out the sassy pout. I will be the first to admit that I hate admitting that I am wrong. No one wants to admit that they are having to deal with the consequence of their bad decision or that they are having a bad day. One thing that helps me to get out of this state of mind is acknowledging that this crummy time is only temporary. If I were to waste my time on the negative things that happen, I would miss so many positive opportunities. 
     To put it simply, you basically have total control of who is in your life. Ok, sometimes you can't control if you have to work with bad people on a group project or if you have people in your classes that speak way too much or ask dumb questions, but you do have the option to control who you hang out with all the other times. If you are in a friendship or relationship that is constantly the source of your unhappiness, cut the ties. If one of your friends is just a living ball of negative energy, choose other people to surround yourself with. 
     SMC is a place that opportunities for happiness arise on a day to day basis. My classes make me happy. My friends make me happy. My rugby team makes me happy. My professors make me happy. Vermont makes me happy. Blogging makes me happy, especially when I see that I have recently obtained over 10,000 views on this blog (holy moly!). 
[our amazing newbies make me so happy!]

     I wish you all the happiest of Mondays!

Love,
Susanna

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(P.S- as stated above, my blog has recently reached over 10,000 views since it began. I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who has supported my blog over the past almost 2 years now. Blogging is really one of my sources of happiness, and I would not be this happy without all of my lovely readers. THANK YOU!!!)

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

No, I Don't Wanna Build a Snowman.

     I love winter. I really truly do. But come on. It is April. I am ready for blooming flowers, green grass, birds chirping, maxi skirts, dresses and sitting out on the library lawn just because it is warm out. I guess this is something that happens when you go to school in Vermont. Don't get me wrong, the snow looks glorious when it covers the large trees and coats the tops of all of the brick buildings. But honestly, I do not want to have to wear 2 pairs of pants to go to my classes that take a whopping 1 minute and 47 seconds to get to (i'm not exaggerating. I timed how long it takes me to get to my classes #weirdo). I'm just tired of freezing my booty off while outside and then melting like a popsicle on the Fourth of July (catch my reference?) once I get inside.
     Thankfully today is a little warmer. The snow is melting slowly and there is no ice on the sidewalks. When I say warm, I mean it is 46 degrees. That is warm for us believe it or not. We are all used to temperatures in the low 20's. It was really funny walking to class today and seeing people in shorts and t-shirts. I guess it is just something we get used too. 
it is finally getting warmer!!!

     While I adore taking advantage of everything Vermont has to offer when it comes to winter-y activities, like skiing, walking on the frozen Lake Champlain and sledding, I think that right about now I am ready for some warm weather activities. Some of the things that I look forward to when the weather gets warmer are...

-adventures to the rail road tracks.
[photo by one of by friends Lida. from last spring]

-studying s(aka anything but studying) outside
[studying outside last spring. as you can see, we aren't really doing much studying]

-not having to wear 1000 layers.
-enjoying some Ben & Jerry's... without people looking at you like you are clinically insane. Normal people eat ice cream when its -15 degrees out, right?
[l to r: Candice, Mar, Me, Lida.]

-playing rugby with shorts and a tshirt on. I am so done with all this layer nonsense it is honestly unreal.
-ice coffee. I love me some ice coffee from Dunkin  Donuts but honestly my hands turn into ice when I have to carry it. I am so ready for some ice coffee and having hands that don't turn into ice.
-biking. I don't bike normally, but one of the things on my bucket list while I am here at SMC is to explore the bike path in Burlington. Hopefully this year we can make it happen!

So Spring, where the heck are ya?! Please hurry up and grace Vermont with your presence. I am ready for some warmth!

Love,
Susanna

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Monday, March 31, 2014

Monday Motivation: Brave.

     Yes, I still keep a journal. Totally a #writerprobs, I know. Don't worry, I don't write in it all the time, only when typing my feelings or speaking them aloud doesn't seem to quite have the meaning that I am trying to convey. I looked back at it the other day for inspiration for a new blog. One of things that I found funny is how I always doodle in the margins, drawing scenes of a life that I dream of or shapes that, if put together correctly, would have some mystical meaning. The common theme between all of my entries was that of doing something out of my comfort zone; something that required courage and bravery. Then it hit me. I was to write about being brave. Bravery is something we all too often reserve for heroes in the classics or our favorite characters in television series. Rarely do we ever think of ourselves being brave. 
      I dream too big. My mind dwells in a parallel universe that could rival even the most prestigious writer. In kindergarten I used to come up with intricate tales, sit down my friends in their typical 90's attire and tell them of my days spent fighting dragons and my nights spent sitting in my castle. You've got your hands full elders used to say as if my lack of limitations was somehow incapacitating.
     Today, I don't really have an idea of failure, nor have I ever. Susanna, only about 6 years old, would be telling you the same thing I am today. I want to make a difference.  Not a stutter, pause or ounce of uncertainty in my voice. It seems like the words possibly, maybe or if are not in my vocabulary. If is a word that to me, is toxic, almost unbearable to my vulnerable ears or poisonous to be spoken off my delicate tongue. I try to use it as little as possible because I am able to set my own limitations in life and if I tell myself if, then I am giving in to the possibility that I don't have what it takes to be great; that I am just doubting everything that I once thought. 
     But through life we are taught that the sky covered by white fluffy clouds isn't the limit for characters like Jack and the Bean Stalk or Chicken Little. So why should it be mine? 
     "If your dreams don't scare you, then they aren't big enough." I cannot begin to tell you how many times I have heard that quote tossed around throughout my two decades living on this planet. But sometimes the only thing you dream of is your bed signaling the end of a very busy and hectic day. Bravery isn't saved for the knights that fight dragons, public speaking in front of large crowds or solos in school plays. It could be asking for help in your macroeconomics class because you really did not understand what was happening. It is deciding to join the rugby team despite knowing nothing about the sport and it's deleting people out of your life because you are worth more than friendships that are nothing short of toxic. 

     These heroic acts do not have to be things that move mountains, cure cancer and they do not set off at the sound of a gun. Most of the time, they begin small...very small. With each step you take, each moment you live they grow larger. Sure, big things are amazing but I believe in acts of bravery that are ordinary. Things you can do everyday. Filling every second that you and I have lived with bravery. 
     No matter the size, big or small, be fearless; be brave. 
Learn Spanish and fail miserably. Fall in love and get your heart broken. Cry, giggle, build, give, dance, walk, sing, scream, write, lead and dream. And grow that dream. Just do it. Whatever your it might be.
     When I was in kindergarten, by dream was fighting dragons and living in a castle. Over a couple of years I went from being a young child with an idea to a college student with a purpose. If you were to tell my young self that those dreams in which I embodied brave would change my life, I wouldn't have believed you. But here I am now, dreaming like never before and fighting those dragons on a day to day basis; being brave. 
     Fight your dragons. Raise your hand. Dream. Inspire. Be brave. 

Love, 
Susanna

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Saturday, March 29, 2014

Figuring it All Out

     I talk to people a lot. I just like to talk, I guess. I'm either always texting, chatting or typing. The other day I was talking to one of my friends and she told me that she thinks I seem different. No, I haven't changed my hair color or anything drastic like that, but I have been feeling a little different for the past month or so. It is a good different, don't worry.

     One of my favorite things about blogging/ being a camp counselor is that I get to talk to people about my past experiences. There are so many things that I wish I could tell people based on the things that I have experienced and the lessons I have learned along the way. I remember a time when I was at camp with my girls from and older cabin and I was speaking to one of the mothers. She said that school that past year had been tough for her daughter and that she just wanted to say to her "relax about your grades!" Sending her to summer camp was a way for her daughter to just forget about everything that went on during school and to just be a kid without being stressed out. The girl was the type that would always strive for excellence and anything less would tear her to pieces. When the mother said that I was instantly brought back to my first year of college (last year) when I got back an exam with 30% written on the top of it.

     THIRTY. Thirty percent. AKA an F. A big one. As far as I was concerned, the world was literally going to stop its revolution around the sun and I was going to be the only person on Earth that experienced this phenomena. In fact, my emotions, fears and insecurities knocked me down so many levels that it was hard to climb back up to the top. That first semester was so rough for me because of that one grade and class. (Side note: I studied a lot for this exam. At the time I did not know that macroeconomics was clearly not my thing.)
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     Looking back at that thirty percent I now realize that it was not an end, but a beginning. Through billions of little things that would follow, I am here now. I started talking to people just because I loved hearing stories and I started writing down my life experiences just so that one day I would be able to remember them. Never in a million years did I think that one day I would be writing my own personal blog in which thousands (yes, thousands...how the heck did that happen?!) of people have read. Never in a billion and one years did I think that I would be at this point today. I thank SMC for that opportunity. I have been able to explore worlds in which I never knew existed and have had the opportunity to talk to so many amazing people.
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    Getting the opportunity to live an amazing life, meet great people from all over the world and have the ability to learn things that interest me....all because I got a thirty on that exam. (Don't worry, I am now beyond happy with the path in life that I have chosen.)

     In two years (eeek) I will be able to graduate SMC with amazing life experiences under my belt. I have big aspirations of one day being able to make a difference. I want to do something that will change people's lives. I want to be happy and successful. 

     Looking at it, it is not the "end goal" that has created the difference that both myself and others have noticed within me. It is just that I have changed the way that I view things in order to make myself as happy as possible. I have decided that it is not the final destination that I am looking forward to, but rather the long back roads, highways and interstates that get me to that place.

    Throughout the past months I have felt like I have just exhaled and let go of everything that was holding me back. I have released so many things that were eating me from the inside out. I let go of my fears. I let go of some people. I let go of insecurities and security blankets. Deciding to let go and to feel the release of energy that I have wasted on negativity feels truly amazing.

     Things that have helped me through have been the community at SMC (everyone is truly amazing), the classes that I have so much passion for, figuring out a schedule that I can handle, rugby to release all my stress and finally, reminding myself that even if things don't go the way that I have them all planned in my head, that things will ultimately fall into place and the horrible things will actually be the start of an incredible journey.
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     I owe it to SMC for making me feel like a new person. Being a part of such an amazing community has opened so many doors for me, both inside my life and out. One thing that I always mention when I give tours is how much of a community we really are. And honestly, it is so true. We are able to pick people up when they are down and brighten up someone's day even if we don't know them. Thanks SMC, for everything. 
    
     I do feel different. In a billion and one ways. I honestly think that this is the first time in my life that I have not freaked out about what the future has in store for me. A couple of months ago, I would have let the fear of the unknown hold me back. Now it is just making me work that much harder to drive me in the right direction.

Love,
Susanna

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Thursday, March 27, 2014

Time Management Tips for the Procrastinator

     I am not sure if I would call myself a procrastinator. I don't complete an assignment the day it was assigned nor do I wait for the last minute to do things. I fall somewhere in the middle. Personally, I think how we manage our time varies from person to person. I can say personally, that the transition from high school to college was mainly based on how you figure out to manage your time.In college you have 10 times more free time than in high school, but you have 10 times more things to complete. It takes longer for some people while others just fall right into a great routine.

     The past year has been hectic. Between 4 classes, giving tours, rugby practice and games and keeping up this blog it is sometimes easy for me to get overwhelmed. I am busy person, so I figured I would share some of my time management tips for all you procrastinators out there!

1. Use a planner! I write down every tour, every homework assignment, every practice and everything in between in my planner. I use the space for each day in my planner to write down what needs to get done for that day, while my monthly calendar is color coded to tell me large events and assignments.
I personally have a Lilly Pulitzer planner, and while expensive, I use the living heck out of it. For me, it was well worth the money that I spent on it if it means keeping me organized.
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2. Schedule some "Me Time". I know, it may sound kind of weird, but for me, it is a necessity. My "me time" during the week takes place from Friday after my rugby practice to Sunday at noon. It may make me sound like a horrible student, but during this time I will not do homework. I do a ton during the week so I use this time to do other things like write blog posts, catch up with friends, do laundry or sleep (most of the time I am probably catching up on sleep).

3. Keep you professors informed! The lovely thing about professors here at SMC is that they are always willing to help you out. If one week is particularly crazy, it is best to keep them up to date on what is going on in your life, especially if that means having to hand in an assignment late. Hey, it happens. it's not going to be the end of the world if you ask for an extension on an assignment.

4. Prioritize! Every one's priorities are different, so I am not going to sit here and tell you that homework needs to come first. For me, I have a pretty unique perspective on my GPA. While I aim to keep it as high as I possibly can achieve, I am more concerned about gaining life experiences and making the personal connections with my professors, employers and peers. While I do my absolute best to keep my grades up, not doing so well on a test or quiz  is not going to kill me. As long as I work as hard as I possibly can and do my assignments to the best of my ability, I am happy with my accomplishments. 

Moral of the story is, figure out what works best for you! 

Love,

Susanna


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[I hope my readers don't take this post as unappreciative of my education. My education means the world to me. I wouldn't be here it if I didn't find it to be important.  I value my education, but I also value real world experience and gaining connections that will be able to propel me in life. It is a give and take between the two.]