Blooming flowers a welcome sight

A gorgeous view from inside our local garden center.
A gorgeous view from inside our local garden center.

I look at spring and summer as a time for new beginnings. Sure, we have January 1 and New Years resolutions and that’s definitely a new beginning, according to the calendar. But after the miserable winter we had this year in the Boston area, seeing flowers blooming and green leaves on the trees and my grass actually becoming colorful has given me pause many times recently. I’ve found it incredible to watch the change this year, especially when everything was so white with snow and then so brown and gross as the snow melted away.

This winter was also particularly difficult for me this year, due to a back injury after a fall on black ice before all the snow started. I’m recovering and feeling great these days and it was wonderful to not only feel good yesterday, but also to look for flowers to plant in our yard. We went to a local gardening center, spent way too much money on flowers and other greenery and the flowers in a greenhouse area actually took my breath away.

As I reflect on the beauty of these flowers and this photo, I also look ahead to a beautiful summer, one that will undoubtedly be filled with New England heat and wonderful memories ahead.

It’s been a while…….

It has been a while since I’ve written for me, as evidenced by the fact that my last post was last December. A lot has happened—I graduated and I now have a full-time job! I am a writer/marketing associate for a local hospice organization, so I do write a lot, but not for ME.

There will be more to come later, but I am in the process of revamping my blog and trying to make regular posts a priority!

Inching toward the finish line…..

Today is my last day of classes for the fall 2013 semester. Where has the time gone?? I begin my final semester next month.

Did I really just type that? 

I remember my first day of school in fall 2011. I went to a writing class that is required for communications majors, after attending a challenging history class that same morning. I was already a bit overwhelmed when I entered that writing class, but I left that writing class feeling inspired after only one session and I was grateful for the opportunity to return to school.

Yesterday was my last day of Advanced Public Relations class with this same professor. Although my journey through this chapter of my college career isn’t complete, it is near its end. I felt as though I’ve truly come full circle today.

Having this professor has changed the course of my return to college. (I’ve previously written about her here.) She encouraged me to join PRSSA during that first semester. She’s believed in me when I haven’t believed in myself. She helped me to become a better writer. She encouraged me to blog. She has helped me to become a better me. She ended up being the only professor who was on campus when I found out I’d won a prestigious scholarship, so she was the first one who heard the news. She’s just…..great.

When people believe in you and challenge you to be a better version of yourself, it can change your life. This journey has changed my life and this particular professor has changed this journey. I was teary-eyed leaving her class yesterday, knowing I will never have her as a professor again. I’ve been fortunate enough to have her for three courses. I knew that this professor/student relationship would come to an end, but I look forward to the relationship I can have with her as my mentor and as my friend. I am at the point where I look forward to the future, while being grateful for the past, regardless of whether the past was good or bad.

(Photo courtesy of brite-ideas.squidoo.com)
(Photo courtesy of brite-ideas.squidoo.com)

In the Spirit of Thanksgiving….

  • I am thankful for my family
    (Photo credit: exploredc.org)
    (Photo credit: exploredc.org)
  • I am thankful for my friends
  • I am thankful for my loud but oh-so-lovable dogs
  • I am thankful for my home and my great neighborhood
  • I am thankful for the opportunity to be in school
  • I am thankful for the opportunities that have come my way as a result of my education
  • I am thankful for the fabulous professors who have guided me through this journey
  • I am thankful for the coffee that has gotten me through some long days of homework
  • I am thankful for the Public Relations Student Society of America.  Joining this organization during my first semester of school changed the course of my time in college.
  • I am thankful for the support I have received from family, friends, acquaintances, schoolmates and faculty since I have gone back to school.  It truly has helped me through this wild ride!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Giving back……

(Photo credit: technorati.com)
(Photo credit: technorati.com)

I want to volunteer.  I want to do something that matters for others. I want to give back.

I do work with the PTO at the elementary school and have been involved for six years, since my oldest was in kindergarten. In fact, I was recently a volunteer at the school’s biggest fundraiser this past Friday night. It was exhausting and exhilarating, as it is every year.  I wish I could have done more to help with this event leading up to it, but with school and the craziness that surrounds it, it’s hard.  Putting together that particular fundraiser takes a lot of work.

But I’ve recently been inspired and would like to find a way to do something else, something  that doesn’t necessarily involve my own children but involves the community.  In an ideal world, I’d love to help out at an animal shelter and play with and walk pups who are looking for a home, but the local shelter here requires a consistent commitment for at least four to six months, so I don’t know if I’d be able to do that.

Even though 2014 will likely bring many new challenges for our family with graduation and job-hunting on the horizon, I’d like to find something that I can do to help others.  I plan to do some research over winter break to see if I can make this happen.  More to come…..

Another step forward

Inspiring words on a card that was at my dinner place at conference
Inspiring words on a card that was at my dinner place at conference

When I first went back to school two years ago, if someone had told me that I’d leave my family for six days to go to a public relations conference for students, I wouldn’t have believed that person.  I am a homebody and I had only traveled by airplane twice before.  I like spending time with my family.  Why would I ever spend money to go to an optional conference when my family doesn’t take elaborate vacations because of the money pit of a house we are always doing work to?

Me with the infamous Rocky Balboa statue.  Yo Adrian!
Me with the infamous Rocky Balboa statue. Yo Adrian!

But you know what? I did just that a few weeks ago–and we all survived.  The house wasn’t a disaster when I returned, laundry got done, the Halloween candy was purchased (I returned two days prior) and my oldest son had his school picture taken.  I have no idea if my husband sent my son to school in a wrinkled shirt–in fact, I don’t even remember what shirt my husband said they picked out–but that’s ok.  I’ll get the picture back in a few weeks and even if it’s not what I would have wanted, I’ll get to look back on it as the year we all did something that was out of our comfort zones. And I won’t do a re-take.

Me in front of the LOVE statue in Philadelphia
Me in front of the LOVE statue in Philadelphia

I survived the flight to Philadelphia. Actually, let’s back up.  I survived the TSA line, something that is very different from the last time I flew.  I think I was most nervous about the darn liquid rule.  I really didn’t want my makeup or skincare to get confiscated–that would have been an expensive loss! I survived the long days of professional workshops and later nights than I am used to. I survived rooming with people I don’t know that well.

The infamous steps in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art that Rocky climbed in the movie!
The infamous steps in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art that Rocky climbed in the movie!

And my family managed without me. Another step in me becoming a new person–one who is independent, one who sets a good example for her kids and one who is still learning to spread her wings!

I climbed the steps!
I climbed the steps!