Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

spring break surpise!

so far my spring break has been awesome. halfway through and i have absolutely no complaints.

i got back to boston from visiting home on monday evening. being home was nice. my sister has the same break as me, so we were just able to be together as a family. per usual, i bought too much stuff (but for the record, most of it was necessities like shampoo and mascara!). but it was really nice to just hang out, go to bed early and not really have anything to do in the morning. i am so thankful that it’s been so nice out. on monday, my sister and i were able to go for a run on the rail trail, a paved path through the woods that used to be a railroad. it was gorgeous out, so we were looking for any excuse to be outside.

i didn’t spend much time in boston when i got back because yesterday afternoon a bunch of my friends and i went down to foxwoods for the night. one of our friends nikole got an amazing deal, so we were able to go down there for really cheap and celebrate spring break and my roommate hope’s birthday! it was so much fun! i’d never been to a casino and, come to find out, i am awful at gambling so i probably won’t be back any time soon, but i had an awesome time roaming the place with my friends. there are actually a few dance clubs in the place (who knew? they had bowling too…?) and so hope and i got to dance for awhile, which is one of my favorite things. overall, it was pretty darn perfect.

… and now, as a complete shock to me, i am going to miami tomorrow morning! wooo! just a few days ago– literally, it was sunday– my boyfriend christian’s mom offered to use her points to get us tickets down there!! it’s so generous of her!! i am very excited!! i have never been to miami before so i am pumped for some sun, some beach and tons of cuban food. haha we are staying with some of christian’s friends who live down there so they will tell us where are the great places to go are and they will show us around! gah! i am so excited! don’t worry– i’ll post some photos when i get back! ­čÖé

Saturday, March 10th, 2012

it’s here!

while spring may not be here yet, spring break certainly is and i could not be more excited about it! this week has been long awaited this semester. there has been so much going on between classes, homework, alternative winter break and post-graduation thoughts that this semester has really flown by (i actually cannot believe that it is already halfway through march), but that also means that i have been going non-stop for the past two months. when last week rolled around, i realized how much i really just needed a break. granted, i am still going to be doing homework ( i have quite a bit to do if i don’t want to feel behind hen school rolls around again), but i don’t have to be doing anything else. i can read my book (i’ve just started the girl who played with fire, the second book in the stieg larsson series and i am seriously hooked). i can watch tv. i can sleep. ugh, sleep.

the break from the normal routine is really what i need. and since i have com home for the first weekend of the week, i already feel a sense of relief and relaxation. i am sad that i am not participating in alternative spring break this year, but i think it’s just going to be nice to take this time for myself, as selfish as that may be.

Monday, March 5th, 2012

thoughts on spring break

with spring break a few days away, vacation is on my mind. i mean, who isn’t thinking about vacation?

this is the first year i am not participating in alternative spring break. so i haven’t been prepping for this coming week like i usually do. typically, i would have been thinking about and planning this week in march for the past seven months. i would have my flight itinerary, my group set and a basic idea of what i would be doing. all tired up in a little package.

instead, i forgot that spring break was so close until march rolled around last week. and at that point, there was no plan. then we decided to go to montreal. set the dates. found a hotel. asked around. got a group. plan made. perfect.

but as of saturday, we are not going to montreal. hahaha i probably could of told you that was going to happen because it’s such a crazy and difficult thing to plan something for a group. but thankfully, i have not be the one trying to plan these things, or else i probably would be going crazy right now. for once, it is kind of nice to be a follower and let someone else plan my life for a few days. i’ve decided that as long as i get away for a day or two, whether it’s to cancun or my neighbor’s house, i will be happy. spring break this year is going to be about taking a break–really taking advantage of what it was made for. good old relaxation. and i am going to make it a point to come back refreshed and ready to take on the last bits of college!

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

alahambra poster

in my graphic design four class, our newest project goes along with a new trend in graphic design: info graphics!

i am sure you all have seen an info graphic before. if you haven’t you should check out good.is because they have some amazing ones which focus on some relevant social issues. very informational and very cool. we’re not doing exactly that, but something along those lines. we had to pick any building in the world,┬á and we have to design an informational poster about it, using images to convey most of the information.

it’s a lot more difficult than it sounds. when you see an effective info graphic, it just makes sense. you understand the facts, statistics or comparisons that are being shown to you, but figuring out the right graphics is the challenging part. for this project the design challenge is how to best convey the information you have without using words.

kind of scary right? we’ve always been given information through words, but sometimes simple things, like pie charts, help, especially for us visual people, the information stick with us so much better. so that’s my challenge right now. i’ve chosen my building–the alhambra in southern spain– and collected the information i want to display. now it’s just a matter of displaying it in a successful way!

Wednesday, February 29th, 2012

city year interview

i had my final in-person interview today for city year! now i have to wait until march 16th to find out if i am accepted into the program or not!

i think it went pretty well. i am fairly confident that i answered everything with a thought-out, sensible answer. it’s kind of scary that this was the last step, and now i just have to wait, but i know i did my best so whatever will be will be. but i couldn’t stop the thought from crossing my head: what if i don’t get it? there goes the only┬ásemblance┬áof a post-graduation plan that i had!
i am going to try to stop myself from thinking like this though, because after i can’t really do anything until i found out the answer. and whatever it ends up being, i’ll plan from there. one step at a time, kaela.

this was kind of my first real interview though. i didn’t really have to do a formal interview for my internship (it was over the phone) and most of the previous interview’s i have done for jobs were pretty casual. for the first time, i wore a business blazer (which was very strange for me– i’m not a blazer girl like my roommates are), and i went into it with a more professional mindset. i was pretty nervous. this is what i am going to have to do all the time in order to get a job? you’d think we would’ve been able to come up with a less intimidating way of hiring people by now… but i guess the nerves are good. they keep you on your toes, and ready for whatever might be coming. i’ve gotten a lot better at this sort of thing — talking to strangers, thinking on my feet and being comfortable doing so — since coming to college. if i can thank my graphic design education and my work study job for anything, it’s my newly developed skill of public speaking. the great thing is (my mom reminded me of this right before i stepped inside the headquater doors) that it’s really only the initial “hi! how are you?”-handshake moment that is the most nerve wracking. once you get past that and start talking (really talking, not small talk), the nerves start to go away, and you just do what you’re there to do. i think it’s the anticipation of the unknown that is so unsettling, not the actual process. if you’re confident in yourself and whatever you’re interviewing for, whether it be for a graphic design job or a coffee shop job, you just have to be honest and answer the questions as best you can. you can’t do anything more than that.

Tuesday, February 28th, 2012

boston beanpot comedy festival

this weekend was the boston beanpot comedy festival. my boyfriend christian is one of the captains of suffolk’s improv team seriously bent so he and the rest of the team were competing! the festival featured college teams from all around the boston area.

it was a three day festival. thursday was the preliminary round. friday was a showcase where all the teams show off what they do best. and saturday was the semi-finals and final rounds.

i was only able to go on thursday, due to limited funds on my part. but the part i got to see what great! it was different than the dorm shows, which is . each team was prompted with a skit title and given 60-90 seconds to preform it. there was a panel of judges who scored them on a few different things. it was really fast-paced and a little crazy, but really funny.

i honestly don’t know how they do it. i could never be that quick on my feet.at one point seriously bent was given the title ” epic norse tale” or something like that. and they rocked it. it was insane. how do you even come up with that?

they made it to the semi-finals on saturday but sadly, they lost by one point. either way, i know they had a really good time (i mean, how could you not?), so that’s the whole point. hopefully there’s another festival soon!!

 

Sunday, February 19th, 2012

annual woo-union

last night was the annual woo-union (worcester reunion) with some of my high school friends. this is the third year that we have all gotten together around valentine’s day to hang out and see each other. val lives in worcester, so it’s kind of a central location for us since alyssa and tina live in maine, kimmy lives in massachusetts and bonni lives in vermont.

this is really the only time of the year that we are all able to get together and see each other at the same time. it’s always really fun to catch up and jump back into our friendship just like it was 4 years ago. we are all friends from our freshman year volleyball team. these girls were probably my first really great friends in high school, and we spent a lot of time together during those four year. even though we’ve grown apart during the past few years of college (which is only natural; we’ve all chosen very different paths), it is still so nice to see them all and hear what they have been doing, and, now that we are graduating, find out what is in the plans for the future. i am so glad that we have made this an annual tradition. it would be really awesome if we could continue it for a few more years, but who knows where we all will be?

Thursday, February 16th, 2012

city year

this past week i submitted my application to city year! gah!

i’ve been thinking about applying to city year for a while now. it kind of fell to the back burner last semester because i had so much going on with school. but now graduation is looming nearer, meaning that the real world is charging at me at full speed. decision-making time.

my trip to el salvador reminded me how much i love doing service work. it really solidified a lot that i already knew about myself, and it made me realize that i am not ready to sit behind a desk for the rest of my life. i want to actively do something. get my hands dirty. make some change happen. i’ve been sitting behind a desk for the past 15 or so years of my life and i have the rest of it to work in an office/firm setting. if i can take this year to do something completely different than i have ever done before and (hopefully) change some lives (including my own) in the process, what the hell? why not?

it’s all happening very fast though, i must say. the end of january i realized that city year could really be something that i do after i graduate. i went to their open house of february 8th. i applied this past monday, and tomorrow i have my first phone interview (there are multiple steps in the interviewing process).

woahhhh. hold your horses.

it’s still february. i have time to decide things. but if i were to get into city year, that’s it. i have to make my decision. that’s a lot of pressure. good in a way that i will be set until june 2013. this summer i can hang out, make money and not have to worry about the job hunt, which would be incredible. but at the same time, it’s one of those “am i sure this is the right choice?” kind of decisions. i’m a double guesser and an over-analyzer, so you’re getting a little peek into my mind right now. lots of things swirling around in there! so as excited as i am, i am a little fearful too. i guess i shouldn’t worry until i find out what happens, right?

Monday, February 13th, 2012

some el salvador lovin’

today i had my meeting with carolina and julia to discuss next year’s trip and the recruitment process for this spring. since i’ve got this nifty blog, i am going to use it to recruit all of you out there to go to el salvador some day (and hopefully you’ll chose to go with suffolk!)

enjoy!

a giant topographical map of el salvador!

look at that view!

san salvador's cathedral

sister peggy's soon-to-be renovated church. it dates back to the 1840s!

understandably, el salvador is known for the land!

there's always an opportunity to chill in a hammock.

am i getting your travel bug jumping yet? haha

Wednesday, February 8th, 2012

printmaking

printmaking has become my favorite class of this semester. i think it is because i have the complete freedom of my own project.┬ásince this is my second time around with printmaking, i get to create my won projects using whatever process i would like to use. pretty cool right? the world of printmaking is at my disposal…

since my trip to el salvador, i have had a lot on my mind regarding all the stories that i heard while i was there and all of the pictures, sites and people i saw, not to mention, the work i contributed to (on that side note– they started working on the roof this past week at the house in san martin that we worked on!! i saw a picture of when the walls were almost finished! its crazy!)

i’ve decided that i am doing a comparative project, relating the violence in el salvador’s past, which is what i learned about during my trip, to the violence of the present, which is something i studied during my latin american history class last year. i am using images from the salvadoran civil war and images from salvadoran gangs to make the relationship between the two time periods.

today, i actually finally made some significant progress. i think i pumped out about 10 prints in an hour and a half using a citrus transfer method. i was having a lot of trouble last week because i wasn’t using the proper paper. i didn’t figure that out until the end of the class though, so throughout the entire period my transfer image was getting stuck to the substrate paper and ripping off the ink or ripping the paper. it was really frustrating. even when it did work relatively well, the blacks just didn’t transfer correctly, leaving me with blotchy dark spots. i was so excited when the first print i made today came out perfect. randal, my professor, was pretty pumped too.

he’s ordering me photo emulsion plates so i can make some prints with that technique. it’s kind of like etching, but instead of having to transfer the image by hand onto the plate, it acts more like film. i make a transparency of the image, expose the plate and that to light and viola! the image has been etched into the plate, ready to be used many times over. much less labor intensive and it doesn’t have the prestige of being hand done, but it still creates an incredible image. i did some this summer and they were beautiful. i am so excited to see how these ones turn out! gee!

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