Tag Archives: The Boy

so long

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Last week I graduated from Union College in upstate New York. It was an absolutely magical day as my parents were there, my sisters were there, The Boy was there, my best friends from college were there, and my grandparents were there. It was extra special to have my paternal grandmother at the ceremony because her husband, my late grandfather, graduated from Union in 1956. My father received his BA in history from Union in 1987 and also got his MAT from Union. My mom received her MBA in Healthcare Management from the Union Graduate College.

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Union College is such a special place to my family and it became even more meaningful to me over the past three years being there. After an unhappy freshman year at Boston College I transferred to Union hoping that I would find a better fit. Without a doubt I did. I have made beyond incredible friends at Union, met so many amazing professors and administrators, and really felt like I found myself during my brief time there. I happily majored in economics with a minor in Russian language and am proud to share that I graduated as the Salutatorian of the Class of 2014 (despite only having three years of grades to factor into my GPA!). Next month I am headed down to my most favorite city in the entire world, New York, to begin a job in finance.

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TheGarnetLetter began as a work study assignment for Union College. Back in 2011 the school had a few student blogs running, many of which played an important role in my decision to attend Union. When I finally got to Schenectady, I wanted to be able to share my unique insights into the school and college life in general to hopefully help other potential students like myself find their perfect fit. Eventually Union combined all of its student blogs onto one platform, the award-winning Union Unfiltered, but I kept TGL going on the side as my own college lifestyle blog and creative outlet.

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Having TGL in my life has shaped me in more ways than I can ever describe. The blog has chronicled my years at Union and the many amazing experiences that I am so grateful to have had. It will be difficult closing this chapter of my life (you might have noticed that I’ve been putting off this farewell post…), but like everything and anything it is time to turn the page and start on yet another, hopefully marvelous, adventure. This will conclude my time writing for TheGarnetLetter, but those savvy enough might find me elsewhere on the blogosphere in a more anonymous sense. I will never lose my love of blogging or my need for a creative outlet, but the real world dictates that my time curating TGL must come to an end.

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Farewell, beautiful readers! Thank you for joining me on this beyond amazing journey and hopefully I will hear from you all again soon somewhere else in this wonderful blogging world 😉

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With much love and many thanks,

Cat

Let the Grecian dream of his sacred stream,

And sing of the brace adorning,

The Phoebus weaves from his laurel leaves

At the golden gates of morning,

But the brook that bounds through old Union’s grounds

Gleams bright as the Delphic water,

And a prize as fair as a god may wear

Is a dip from our Alma Mater.

 

Then here’s to the, the brave and free,

Old Union, smiling o’er us

And for many a days as they walls grow gray,

May they ring with thy children’s chorus!

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This weekend was crucial for me in terms of spending time with friends and family. Even though I technically don’t have school off today (although, I kind of do since I scheduled my classes to only be on Tuesday/Thursdays… :P) I definitely felt the excitement of the holiday weekend these past few days.
I began my weekend with a trip to the outlets in Lee, MA with my little sister. I didn’t have as much luck as I had hoped, but I guess that just means I get to spend more in the future!! On Saturday I volunteered with my parents at the Regional Food Bank’s organic farm. We were building a brand new greenhouse. It was fun to get my hands dirty (quite literally) and spend some time with my parents doing good.

That night I hung out with my housemates and took it easy and watched a movie. It was raining and I was beat, so I didn’t have much energy for going out. On Sunday, I helped host a block party event for my school (we made boba! Yummm!) and then in the late afternoon I hit the mall with my dad to try to find some great deals on business wear. At night I got sushi take-out with The Boy and watched about a million episodes of White Collar (the BEST!).

I think my weekend was just the perfect mix of doing things and not doing things, spending time with family, making time for friends, and really just appreciating the short time I have left of my college career. I still know it won’t be easy to transition out of this, but this weekend left me feeling a lot better about moving forward and knowing that everything is going to be just fine.

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like fireworks

I know I must sound like a broken record at this point (see here), but my spring weekends recently have been just so wonderful and definitely way too short. Why does that always happen? This weekend began with a date to see the opening of Godzilla on Thursday (so, so, SO good — will definitely have another post on that some time soon), followed by a personal spa day on Friday and a great party on Friday night (see instagram!). On Saturday I slept in past noon (#college) and met my little sister at my hometown’s annual Niskaday fair. Niskaday is a time-honored tradition for the people of my hometown and going there brought back myriad memories of late spring afternoons spent hanging out with friends after school. My favorite part of the fair was winning fish from the Boy Scout troop’s ping-pong ball game. The Boy and I won 10 fish!! I love them oh so much (but one already died last night and I don’t know how to handle it… and I’m supposed to go out into the real world in three weeks… oops!). Then on Saturday night we joined my parents for the fair’s awesome fireworks show. Sunday brought with it one of my best friend’s graduation party and (unfortunately) the inevitable homework. I really hope I can make some time this week to stay relaxed and keep the weekend sentiment going. Anyone else have a too-short weekend?

mother’s day weekend

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that’s yours truly on the flute!

Where do I even begin with this weekend? On Friday afternoon I presented my Senior Thesis at my school’s annual Steinmetz Symposium. It went really well and both my father and The Boy were able to attend. It was so great sharing my work with my old professors, family, and friends. Then I had my last orchestra concert ever on Friday night. We played Dvorak’s Symphony No. 9 — a real favorite.

The Boy and I after my Prize Day ceremonies

me and The Boy after my Prize Day ceremonies

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yummy homemade chocolate covered strawberries for my momma!

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the whole family (minus cali twin) at the Tulip Fest

On Saturday I was inducted into Union’s chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. It was a really special honor as my mother and both of my grandmothers are also members. Afterwards the school celebrated with a beautiful brunch. Then that afternoon was Prize Day. Every year Union holds Prize Day in order to recognize special seniors (and some juniors and sophomores!) for their excellence and contributions to the school and community. The ceremony holds a lot of suspense as none of the recipients are announced until they have to walk up to the stage to receive their award! This year I was honored to receive three awards: the Andrew W. Archibald award “To the senior earning a Bachelor of Arts degree with the highest scholastic standing,” the John Iwanik Prize “to an outstanding Russian language student” (and two of my other Russian language friends won with me!), and the Horatio G. Warner award “to a student of high personal character who has the highest scholastic standing in the Bachelor of Arts program.” It was a beautiful and exciting ceremony.

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Finally, Sunday was Mother’s Day! I spent the day with my mom (and my family) at the Albany Tulip Festival. I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day. The weather was beautiful, the tulips were incredible, and with good food and good family there were lots of laughs 🙂 At night The Boy and I celebrated our one year anniversary by satisfying our Chinese food cravings at P. F. Chang’s.  I hadn’t been there in a really long time, so it was a nice treat.

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such a cutie!!

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YUM.

I can’t believe my weekend is over already! I had such an incredible time and although the weather is gorgeous today, it’s tough getting back to the grindstone. Anyone else missing their weekend?

weekend woohoo

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Where do I even begin about this weekend? First off, Union College won its first ever Frozen Four men’s hockey national championship title on Saturday! It was unbelievable. Union knows how to celebrate, but the energy of this weekend was just beyond. Did the students get some bad press with a few “riots” and the like? Maybe. But no one can deny the sheer awesomeness of two thousand ecstatic students and a community totally rallying behind an underdog victory. On top of the historic win, my weekend was made even more wonderful by friends, family, and the weather. The Boy‘s younger brother visited campus (potential Union Class of 2018 student) as did my little sister and her BF. Everyone got along so well and we had so many great adventures. Plus, the weather was gorgeous! The temps in upstate NY recently have supposedly been in the 60s, but it feels so much warmer than that. The entire Union College campus is coming out of hibernation, and spring and the students have finally sprung!

Did you have a wonderful weekend??

movie spectrum

This past weekend I saw three very different movies. I saw an action film, a family film, and an indie film. Here’s what I thought about my movies from all over the spectrum:

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Action Film: Captain America: The Winter Soldier

The new Captain America movie was really excellent. Having missed the first one and having never seen The Avengers (I guess you could say I’m a little behind…), I was expecting to be totally lost with this film, but the story held up on its own very well (and it helped that The Boy gave me a 15-minute recap of the previous movies on our way to the theater). I was fully able to appreciate this 136 minute long flick and would definitely recommend seeing it in IMAX 3D, despite the hefty cost. Plus, the previews gave me countless movies to add to my future to-see list!

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Family Film: Muppets Most Wanted

I saw this movie with my parents and a theater full of 8-and-under-year-olds and totally admit to laughing out loud multiple times. The plot involved an evil Russian Kermit look-alike and the references to Siberia and Russian culture were absolutely hilarious. I appreciated that this film had humor aimed at the adults in the audience, but it was never cynical or subtly profane like some movies like to do. I wouldn’t say that this is a movie that you must see in theaters, but it should definitely be added to your list of light-hearted and entertaining flicks reserved for those rainy day blues.

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Indie Film: Her

Where do I begin with Her? Probably the best way to describe this movie is to call it “intriguing” or maybe “disturbing,” depending on how you feel. Basically a film about a man in future L.A. falling in love with his personal assistant operating system, the plot definitely raises some questions about the future of man’s interaction with technology and what exactly makes humans human. That being said, I thought the film could have delved into those questions with more depth. Instead audience members got more depressing, Sundance moments and a few uncomfortable human-on-computer love scenes that left almost nothing up to the imagination. Would I recommend seeing the movie? Certainly! Despite its shortcomings and it’s very indie indie-ness, it raised some good questions as the world becomes more and more technologically devoted.

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just in case reading about that last movie made you sad, here’s a photo of Captain America (Chris Evans) to brighten your mood…

Check out my other movie reviews:

The Wolf of Wall Street, Lone Survivor, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit | Julie and JuliaThe Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, American Hustle |  About TimeGravity |  The Great Gatsby |  Skyfall The Hunger GamesExtremely Loud and Incredibly Close

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the view of the Gulf from my grandmother's balcony

the view of the Gulf from my grandmother’s balcony

Last week I spent my spring break down in Naples, Florida with Julia and The Boy. Simply put, it was an absolutely magical week. The weather reached 80 degrees nearly every day and the colors of the ocean and sky were more vibrant than anything I have seen in months. It’s tough to be back in rainy Schenectady when this is what our schedule looked like on a typical day:

10am – Wake up and have a delicious breakfast on the balcony with the bay to our left and the Gulf to our right

11am – Head down to the beach and walk along the shore finding magnificent shells

12pm – Read in the sun while working on our tans

2pm – Go back to the house for a quick bite to eat and get a little break from the rays

3pm – Lounge by the pool diving into more chapters

6pm – Shower off the sand and salt and get gussied up!

7pm – Have a delicious dinner that makes for hours of awesome conversation

9pm – Watch some TV/read while reclining on the world’s most comfortable couch

11pm – Hit the hay dreaming about another awesome day!

I’ve been on plenty of fantastic vacations over the last four years while in college, but this on was by far the fastest. It’s frightening because today is the first day of my last trimester of college. In just 10 short weeks I will be graduated and I know the term is going to disappear in a heartbeat. Follow me the whole time and wish me luck!

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enjoying a delicious dinner

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always need to make time for lilly!

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both Julia and The Boy found twins!

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goofballs being abducted…

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a lovely sunset