Graduation Day Snapshots

IMG_3154

Two weeks ago, I walked across a stage and received my diploma. Well actually, I walked across two stages in two different ceremonies and was handed a placeholder diploma – my real one is on its way via snail mail. There was the typical fanfare – processionals and fancy guest speakers – but the day was sweetly simple. My parents and grandparents were there, and we all grabbed lunch with Domenico’s family. Between the two ceremonies, Domenico and I played with Raena and watched The Graduate.

Since graduation day, I’ve mostly been working, finishing Mad Men, visiting with friends who have moved on to new and exciting cities and were back to graduate, planning for my upcoming trip to Europe, and housesitting for my parents while they’re in Alaska. As you can gather, not much has changed since becoming a college graduate. I have more time to make dinner after I get home from work and less on my agenda. Mostly, I’m grappling with the idea that this is adulthood. Sure, I was independent and employed while I was in college, but this is officially the beginning of the rest of my life. Unlike the life of a student, there is no end date, no graduation day to mark on the calendar. It’s exciting, overwhelming, distressing and inspiring all at once. Pretty soon I’ll come up with my Master Plan for Life, but for tonight, I’ll just watch Marie Antoinette and plan my trip to Versailles.

grad1 grad3 grad4 grad5

Spending the Day Outside

IMG_2496

April is right on the cusp of Arizona’s unbearable summer; it’s a magical month when you can still enjoy an afternoon sitting outside, drinking a smoothie and feeding tiny pieces of your apple to hopping finches. And Earth Day, designated to loving the pretty planet we live on, is so perfectly nested in the middle of it.

The other day I was on my way to the bus stop to head to a class in Phoenix, when I decided to walk a slightly different way through campus and pick up a juice. I went past the library to this little corner of campus with an organic cafe, patches of shaded grass, a sculpture art installation, and a playground for the little ones who attend daycare at the university. And as I saw the clusters of students reading and studying or simply enjoying the afternoon, I got really, achingly sad to be leaving college. It was almost a nostalgia for the experiences I didn’t have, the days I spent rushing between classes or home rather than lingering on campus. Being in college offers so many opportunities to do just that; there are little gaps in the day between classes that you can take to yourself. What a beautiful thing!

It’s hard not to be nostalgic about my experiences as a student – both the real and imagined – but I know that there will be other, future opportunities to enjoy little things like spending the afternoon reading a book, leaving the office to get an iced coffee, or working outside for a few hours. Today, drinking coffee on my back patio, I feel like the best really is yet to come.

Hey There, World

It’s been a while. Please excuse my absence as I’ve been holed up in my room with a pile of papers, magazines, and yes, yarn surrounding me, trapping me and making me incapable of blogging. But now finally, I’m out.

For the past month, I’ve been knee-deep in thesis work, finishing up an endeavor I’ve been working on for nine months. I’ve also been designing the Lux magazines and getting it ready for the printer. And I’ve been knitting like mad, trying to finish up some projects for a little shop in San Francisco that will be selling my work (more to come on that). Of course, it hasn’t all been work – I also sat on the steps of the National Archive in Washington, D.C. and ate Salt & Straw ice cream on the rainy streets of Portland (more to come on that as well).

IMG_2960 IMG_2973 IMG_2974 IMG_2975

Last week, after months of careful research, interviewing, and writing, I defended my thesis to my board and my sweet family. And it was quite a success! (Note the pretty lilies my mom brought me and the smile of accomplishment I’m wearing.) I also packaged Lux up for the printers and shipped a little box of my knitting off yesterday, and I feel like the world has opened up a little bit again. Don’t get me wrong – I am wildly excited about and proud of all these endeavors. They make me feel productive and creative. They’re the culmination of my work as a writer, student, editor, and I suppose knitter. But they can also be quite draining, and together all those looming deadlines and massive undertakings can weigh on a person.

Now I hope to have time to plan a trip to Europe (talk about an undertaking), catch up on House of Cards, read my current book – Michael Chabon’s Wonder Boys, bake some zucchini bread, and of course, blog. And with some of those great deadlines behind me, the end of my college career looks shockingly close. Here’s to the next few months!