Saturday, August 31, 2013

Puppy Roommate

 So, this is Djanga.
I think I last mentioned her here, last semester when Caleb got her, and ohmygod she was so tiny! And now look at her! Her face and ears are certainly no longer so little. But she's the cutest. And so energetic! She always wants to play. Or lick your legs (equally as fun as playing, clearly).

The funniest thing though? How everyone likes to narrate her thoughts. Out loud. All the time. 
And it's hilarious every time.

P.S. Thank you for the kind feedback on my last post. It made my day even better :)

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Thoughts on Achieving Goals

Photo via, with words added by me.

Today was an awesome day.

Every semester, we have ensemble auditions. I set goals for myself, I practice a lot, I get nervous, I don't do as well as I can, and I get close but am always a bit shy of my goals.

Not this semester. This semester, I did it. My goals were to move up into Wind Orchestra and become a principal in UPO, and I did it. I'm not trying to brag, but I am really, really proud of myself.

My Mom once read that quote (above) in the newspaper and then said it to us in every applicable situation. Finally, it makes complete sense. Nothing but hard work turns a goal into reality. It feels really great to have success in an area I've been working on for a while and to have my hard work recognized in the way I was hoping it would be. I am hoping this is a sign of more good things to come throughout this last year of my undergrad.

For now, I'm just looking forward to rehearsals and beginning grad school applications.

I guess my prediction from earlier this week was right: this should be a great year.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Senior Year

(PIANO FACE! I wonder how those googly eyes ended up in my practice room)

Welp, today was the first day of my senior year of college. That's pretty weird. My sister just started college and here I am, in the home stretch.

My schedule is more open than it ever has been; I'm taking two classes, lessons, and three ensembles. I'll be busy, but I'll have enough time to practice a lot and (hopefully) get more photography gigs.

Tomorrow we have ensemble auditions. Potentially my last ensemble auditions at FSU, but inevitably I'll have to take them again next semester, ha!

I had one class today but I didn't leave school until 6pm.

This should be a great year.

Off to edit photos like it's my job...oh wait, it kind of is ;)

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Euro Trip: Paris, IV

I spent my second-to-last day with a friend from FSU who was studying abroad in Paris! We met up in Le Marais, the Jewish quarter, and went to the Museum of the Shoah, the Holocaust Museum.
Then we went to another museum, briefly, but I can't remember what it was called and I didn't take many photos...but after that, and eating some delicious crepes, we stopped by the bookstore where writers such as Hemingway and James Joyce gathered, and sometimes, lived. I could spend an entire day in there just meandering around, reading the descriptions on the hundreds of books they have in stock. If it had some fans and wasn't so crowded, that is ;)
Then, we went to the Pantheon.
Thanks, Harrison, for such a fun day. And for keeping me company!

The next day, my last day in Paris, Monique and I had planned to go to Versailles. But it was CLOSED. I was so disappointed; all week I had been looking forward to seeing the gardens and grandeur. So, in lieu of the unfortunate circumstances, we made the best of it and decided to go see La Conciergerie (the prison where Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI were kept before being, know) and Saint-Chappelle. 
^ a model of Marie Antoinette's cell ^
^ these windows took about 10 years (I think) to clean. talk about patience ^
We then decided to make our way to Centre de Pompidou for lunch and the museum (it's the modern art museum in Paris).

The museum had an amazing Roy Lichtenstein exhibit, and since I was feeling kind of worn out from the 5 previous days of go go go-ing, we went through the exhibit and headed home.
Lastly, I want to share possibly my favorite photos from the trip.

After my day in Montmartre, Monique and I went to see Le Tour Eiffel all lit up. And it was AMAZING. You know, you see photos of the Eiffel Tower and you're like, "oh that's awesome, it's the Eiffel Tower, yada yada"...but then you're really lucky and you get to go to Paris and you see it in person and it blows your freaking mind. And I didn't even go to the top for the view (which, from what I understand, is pretty much the same as the view from Le Sacre Couer). I am not exaggerating, it is overwhelming. I felt so small and so big all at the same time, I don't know maybe Le Tour Eiffel is magic too.
For a few minutes, they have a million bulbs flashing for the tourists. It's an epileptic's worst nightmare, but it's incredible. Two thumbs up from me.
Finally, ah, Monique. She'd probably be pretty mad if she knew I put this photo on the Internet but that's a risk I'm willing to take. I owe her everything for turning this summer around for me and making my week in Paris so fantastic. It wouldn't have happened if it weren't for her. I am eternally grateful to her for giving me these experiences.

And thank YOU for sticking with me as I shared my abundance of photos. Hope you enjoyed them.
You can see all of my Europe posts HERE.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Euro Trip: Paris, Part III

On this day (day 4? who even knows anymore) I ventured out to Montmartre on my own. No reason to drag Monique around as I walked forever in search of cemeteries and movie landmarks.

First stop: Le Sacre Couer. The architecture and the view are both amazing. But it was oddly touristy inside, even as the nuns began their prayer.
^ Cafe des Deux Moulins, the restaurant where Amelie worked! I love this movie so I smiled the entire time I was eating my lunch in there ^
^ the Moulin Rouge! quite seedy in real life, but I didn't go in so it's fine ^

After fulfilling my movie dreams, I made my way to Cemetiere de Montmartre, because there are some very famous musicians and artists buried here. What I did not know, is that it's a freaking maze. I got lost a lot. And I had a panicked moment in which I wasn't sure I'd be able to find my way out again. But I did, and I also managed to see all but two of the graves I had been looking for.
^ Berlioz ^
^ Adolphe Sax ^
^ someone left this in front of de Gas' tomb. really, quite thoughtful. if you don't know, de Gas' paintings often portrayed dancers ^

Then, back on the Metro to Pere Lachaise cemetery.
^ Rossini was exciting for me, since I played a piece by him on my recital last semester! ^
^ possibly the most popular grave site is that of Jim Morrison (from The Doors, come on) but it's also the hardest to find because it's hidden behind some others and blocked off my some rope? Not sure why. But it still manages to have the most stuff on it in memoriam ^

aaaand that's my day in Montmartre. It was a really really good day. I had a moment of complete and utter contentment as I walked around the little town, by myself, eating some gelato, dressed like Belle from Beauty and the Beast. I'd be happy to do that every single day (although I might get sick of gelato, it's just so sweet). I feel so fortunate to have had that opportunity.

You can see all of my Europe posts (past and present) HERE.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

My Fourth Move

Yep, I've moved every year since I started college. Whoop! Hopefully next year (the BIG move) will be for more than a year...because, this moving shit? It gets real old, real fast.

Here are some peeks into my new bedroom. I like it a lot because it's very light. Everything is pretty much grey and white, minus the dressers and stuff. And! My closet is pretty huge. Which, ya know, rules.
 ^ Postcards from the MoMA, my time in Europe, one from home, and printed photos of mine ^
Here's to hoping it stays (relatively) clean!...

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Euro Trip: Paris, Part II

Day 3 (I think it was day 3? but it doesn't really matter) found us at Musee du Luxembourg to see the Chagall exhibit there. It was a nice contrast to the many, many, many paintings of Jesus and Mary that I had seen in the previous days. Chagall was Jewish and a lot of his works reflect that.
In the gardens, there was another small exhibition of a local artist. Her paintings were wonderful. If I ever have enough money that I can buy art, I'll buy one of her paintings.
^v Jardin du Luxembourg v^
After walking through the gardens, we made our way to Notre Dame. We didn't wait in the ridiculous line to get in, we just enjoyed the view from the outside. It's an incredible building so that was completely fulfilling.

^ do you think I have enough photos of Musee du Louvre? ^
^ we walked through the flower district and, naturally, I made a beeline for the cactuses ^

Then, on our way home, we stopped by L'Opera Garnier. GUYS. It's straight out of The Phantom of the Opera and I was in heaven. I took a photo of every single costume they had on display. They were all so beautiful, so real. It amazed me to think that people dance on that stage. People sit in THAT audience. Gives me goosebumps just remembering.
^ this ceiling was painted by Chagall! ^
^ the view from the outside balcony ^
^ The Rite of Spring! as a music major, I got pretty excited about this ^
So yeah. This was all in one day. And it was so much fun. I think later this day, I went back out on my own just to walk around and go in and out of some stores. It was nice.

I have at least two more posts, I think. Sorry about that, but then again, this blog is mine so I'm not sorry! I like sharing these photos. I'm kind of re-living my trip. And since I miss Paris a lot, it makes me feel better.

See my other posts from this Europe trip HERE. In other news: John comes home TOMORROW!

Until next time...
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