And the Snow Falls

Snowfall

Every beginning has its end. On February 25, I put up my first post. Now 10 months later, this is the last. This is my last post I will have this semester and most likely the last post of mine here on WordPress. We, as in Cougar Diaries, are moving on to a new platform, Facebook. There, we hope to connect to even more people and share the small moments of life here at Saint Xavier. It was fun doing this blog. It has given me time to think with workloads that sometimes prevent me from thinking of myself and of what is the world around me beyond the classroom. But as an end to this blog, as it may be, it is also a beginning.

 

It is the first snow, a fitting beginning for an end. The snow is white, fluffy and has a gentle coldness to it. There is no dirty or uncomfortable slurry of freezing rain. There is just a silent falling that sounds in the air. No cars are out heading to 103rd Street. No people are out to disturb the blanket of white snow. Only the hum of exhaust from steam above on the roofs of buildings and the ambient sound of the wind tells me I am not deaf. It is more than just frozen water constructed in beautiful and unique shapes, but the end of a time. The campus is empty, not a soul out as I walk slowly through the cascade of gentle powdered sugar. It is fitting that on this day that the first snow fall is the last day I am to be here on this site.

 

There is sadness and anxiousness within me. I am somber to the fact that I no longer will be on this site. And with the load of finals on my back, I find it hard to finish this. But I also find a comfort in the quiet snowfall. The end of the semester seems so far away yet in only a few days I will be leaving this school for home once more. It’s quiet as I sit by the window watching countless snowflakes fall to never be seen again. And in the haze of the snow, I smile, knowing only at this moment in time will it be so. The day is drawing to a close and I have much to do. But let me take one last look outside and remember the day I first wrote to you here. It’s not the end of Cougar Diaries. We will continue on here. It’s only another beginning for stories of this school and its people. The day draws to a close and the snow falls.

 

Doing Things That Make You Happy

11863237_1040415949324571_9133901594397760549_nMidterms are this week and the horrible stress weighs us all down. Times like this remind of well, any other week where the stress of midterms is not on me. So for this week, I’m going to be focusing on doing things that make you happy!

Yes, I know your first thought is probably, “Genesis said I don’t need to study for midterms, yippee!” and so of course my answer is no. I know of course there are things in life that we all have to do that we don’t really want to do; midterms is one of those things.

One thing that people always ask me is how do I do it all? And my answer is “I dunno. I kinda just do it.” This week, though, I realized that everything I do makes me happy. 12038305_1159419904072873_110222659428685842_nOf course some days I am more tired than others, some days are just crappy, and some days nothing goes my way. But there are days where simple little moments can make my whole day. Maybe it’s after a tour where a perspective student is so excited that afterwards they clap for me (which seriously is one of the best feelings ever). Or when one of my transition students is no longer freaking out and they feel better. Or even something as simple as having one of my residents hug me after being in distress. I love these simple things where I did something to help—even just a little. Honestly I think everything that I do makes me happy.

Today in one of my education classes we talked about how work isn’t really work when it’s something that you love. This really got me thinking about everything that I was involved in. From doing Broadview to being a Resident Peer Minister to every little thing in between: I love what I do.12032920_757997394306696_3591963017190083193_o Being happy makes doing so many things possible. Yeah, for sure, I do things that I don’t really want to do (like take my first midterm tomorrow…) but overall, I try to surround myself with activities and people who make me happy.

One awesome thing that happened this week was MSPJ’s October 2 trip to Broadview which was featured in the Chicago Tribune! Within the article it talks about SXU, Broadview, and immigration. I also have a couple of quotes within, so give it a look by checking out the link here!

I would like to wish everyone good luck on midterms this week! I know it’s going to be a long week, but we got this! Two things that I’m  looking forward to this week are the NSCS induction ceremony tomorrow and my sister Maya is visiting from Minnesota this week! So yay! Stay tuned next week to hear all about it!

Hello 2015! Welcome back SXU!

Good morning SXU!

I hope the holidays were wonderful for you and you got to spend lots of time relaxing and eating and just doing nothing.

Happy New Year

Happy New Year

Now that 2015 is here, it is time to set goals for yourself, manage your time, and reach for them. We are now entering the spring semester. That means another step closer to graduation and becoming adults with careers. Doesn’t that sound great?!

Here’s how to have a great semester with rocking grades!

1. READ YOUR SYLLABUS FOR EVERY SINGLE CLASS!

2. MAKE SURE YOU GO TO EVERY SINGLE CLASS!

3. GET ORGANIZED! Use a planner to write down due dates and homework assignments. Get a notebook to write down notes. Make sure you are neat and you understand what you’re writing. Phrasing is very important when given a big load of information and you need the main idea(s). Color coding with higlighters or color pens makes everything fun and pretty. Make sure that you have a classmates phone number, email, or facebook in case you need to get in touch with someone.

Use a planner to help you have a great semester.

Use a planner to help you have a great semester.

4. MANAGE YOUR TIME! Use your planner to schedule time to read, do homework, study, and socialize. Remember that school comes first so when you’re supposed to be reading, actually read and not read facebook statuses or tweets. It’s okay to say “no” to going out if you have work to do. Making lists is a fun way to make sure you don’t miss anything.

5. STUDY SMART! Find a good place to study where you will focus and not get distracted. Get started as soon as possible and do not procrastinate. Figure out how you learn best (hands on, rereading, flash cards, listening to the lecture again, etc.). Organize how you’re going to study.

Ask questions, take good notes, and study.

Ask questions, take good notes, and study.

6. BE SUCCESSFUL! Do all your work & complete assignments. Sit in front of the class. Be on time. Participate! Communicate with your professors and establish good relationships with them and they’ll usually give you the benefit of the doubt (although not all of them will). Use services available like tutoring, open labs, etc.

Once you get the grades you want, you can reward yourself. :) that’s the best part. Make sure you have a great, fun semester!

Go for it!

Go for it!

The Week Keeps Going, Even For The Sick..

Well hey ya’ll, we are almost there, must of us have two days this week of school before you get to sit back, relax, and eat a whole bunch of turkey. Hopefully it isn’t too bad.. I only have classes on Monday, and get to ride home! Super excited to see my family! This past week has been terrible for me though, I have been sick, and being sick in college really isn’t fun.. For those classes you can have absences for, it’s not many, and when you try and go to class coughing and sneezes, you’re pretty much not getting anything that your professor is saying! It just isn’t fun at all. All I know is that being sick in college isn’t fun.. There is so much I decided to miss after my classes that I wish I could of gone to! From the hunger banquet to improv, I hated missing all of these awesome fun things, but I also knew that if I didn’t rest, I would probably never get better, and even though it has almost been a week I am still not up to my hundred percent self! Once I Bet this cold I will probably never again want to have tea ever again.. Because I am on 3-5 cups every day, never again. I miss coffee. And I miss other foods then soup, on the plus point at least our cafeteria  does change there soups everyday!

photoOne thing that I knew I had to do sick or not was go to Broadview Detention Center this week, especially after Obama’s Speech on immigration, how he is he finally taking the correct steps, but more is needed, we need to say thank you President Obama, but more needs to get done. On Friday, it was a smaller group of SXU students for Broadview Detention Center, I didn’t even know about it myself till the day before, but everyone should try hard in January and following months to learn about the broken immigration system, about the steps that are taking place to hopefully mend them, and to pray for those who are being affected about deportation. This week’s was pretty cool, not just in weather because there was channel 5 interviewing families and protesors!

I hope everyone makes it through these two days, and safe travels back home for turkey time and family time! Sending happy thoughts from a sick girl, who is tired of tea, drink some coffee for me!

Snapshot: Parte Uno

Last semester, my friend Dara asked me to be a model for her class project in photography. So I did and it was a lot of fun. This semester, a co-worker, Jacob asked both Michael and myself to model for him, so we did.

It was so interesting working with both of them and being able to bring to life the visions these photographer had. I finally feel like all those years of watching “America’s Next Top Model” paid off! LMFAO!

I truly hope that I will get the chance to do the same in the Fall semester of 2015. I was a model twice and finally being able to be a photographer would be amazing!

Here are some of my photos from my first shoot! Enjoy!

Full body shot

Full body shot

Awkward dancing pose

Awkward dancing pose

Oh! Look at me!

Oh! Look at me!

Wait. what??

Wait. what??

Prom pose

Prom pose

The lovely photographer Dara & I

The lovely photographer Dara & I

Walk Through Week

I am super excited this week because I did a lot of great things. This was my week. Check it out!

MONDAY! Michael and his best friend Matt are going to start a podcast! Whenever they are together they have a blast! They laugh about nothing and everything at the same time. They are definitely good vibes to be around when you’re having a bad day.

Ice Cream Time!

Ice Cream Time!

Sudying/Breakfast at Denny's

Studying/Breakfast at Denny’s

TUESDAY! This day was very nerve wrecking and exciting at the same time. I received an email from Career Services quite some time ago about an internship. At first I didn’t make much of it until I read it. It was a PAID internship and all I needed to apply was my resume and a cover letter. I sent it in so now I am just waiting! Pray for me! HAHAHA

WEDNESDAY! I worked all day…. Don’t talk to me about Wednesday…. BUT I had COFFEE so it wasn’t too bad. Denisse bought me lunch too! #CommuterProblems HAHA! Hey girl, hey! I see you.

My Best Friend!

My Best Friend!

THURSDAY!

Nothing special… I went to work. I had a caramel burlee lattee from Starbucks. My dirty little obsession.

FRIDAYYY!

UNIDOS had their Ice Cream Social for Diversity Week. It was a success! We have 4 different flavors plus a special treat called Mangolada. It’s a mango purree/sauce and you add chamoy which is a chile sause and tajin which is like chile powder. You can add ice cream to it and lemon as well. It was great!

Follow UNIDOS on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram

Follow UNIDOS on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram

SATURDAY!

This was my mommy’s birthday! She is now in her late 30′s. She’s so amazing. She recently started working on the weekends and I see her less than I already used to and it makes me realize how much I miss her and how much work she does at home. It feels empty without her.

This is my mother and her 4 kids.

This is my mother and her 4 kids last Christmas.

SUNDAY!

Today was nothing special. I had a photoshoot with Michael for one of our friends photography class. It was interesting. AND….. THE BEARS WON TODAY! I predicted they would win today. I am a proud Bears Fan.

Go Chicago Bears!

Go Chicago Bears!

HAVE A GREAT WEEK!

 

 

Sky View

Hello Everyone!

This weekend has been quite an interesting one. On Friday, I literally sat at my dining room table for hours! My teacher was out of town for the day and we had out of class assignments. Both were criminal justice related. I had to watch an hour long video and write a 2-3 page paper on both of the videos and relate it to what we have learned in class. :l My back still hurts from sitting at the table all day LOL

Saturday was a better day. I received wonderful news about another criminal justice paper I had turned in earlier the week before. I met with my professor about it and got feedback! Because of this I did a “superb job” on my paper and got an A+. I was beyond happy.

Saturday night, Michael and I went on a trip downtown! We went up to the 103rd floor of the Willis Tower A.K.A The Sears Tower! Yes, the Skydeck ladies and gents. It was my first time up there and it was sooooooooo high. LOL I’m scared of heights so it was a lot of fun. They were closing at 8pm so we spent maybe a total of 5 mins in the actual box and like 30 minutes in getting up there along with all the waiting. Here are some pictures! Check it out!

Michael and I

Michael and I

Michael an I

Michael and I

Michael & I

Michael & I

Michael & I

Michael & I

Diversity Week is this week! UNIDOS is having an event on Friday, November 14, 2014. Our event is an an Ice Cream Social and Loteria (Mexican Bingo). We will have free ice cream and some typical Mexican ice creams. Join us in the Diner from 12pm – 1pm. It will be a ton of fun! We will also have a booth at Multicultural Night! Here is the flyer for the other events going on this week.

Diversity Week Flyer

Diversity Week Flyer

Don’t forget to follow UNIDOS on Social Media

Follow UNIDOS on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram

Follow UNIDOS on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram

Have a great week everyone!

 

College Runway

Good Morning Cougars!

School is starting to kick my butt! My criminal justice classes are definitely kicking into high gear with exams, papers, and projects. This semester I am taking 4 criminal justice classes (Juvenile Justice, Victimology, Corrections, and Stats & Research 1) and I dropped my 1 political science class (Political Theory). It was totally NOT my thing :(

Next semester is going to be fun! I am getting more of my gen-eds out of the way and I will be taking 3 criminal justice classes, 1 English class because it’s like taking out 5 birds with 1 stone, and a history class as well. I cannot stress how important it is that you make sure you have enough credits to graduate! It’s not just about finishing up your classes. I will be taking 3 extra classes my last semester here because I will have finished my major but I would be short on credits. I am taking suggestions on fun, easy, interesting classes! LOL

In the UNIDOS world, please follow us on our social media pages!

Follow UNIDOS on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram

Follow UNIDOS on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram

We are beginning preparations for our 2nd annual mass in honor of Our Lady of Guadalupe who is such an important and influential saint/angel in our Catholic religion. If anyone would like to participate, please reach out to UNIDOS through our Facebook page. We need lots of volunteers and help!

Our Lady of Guadalupe

Our Lady of Guadalupe

I am like getting into this thing called exercise… Have you guys heard of it? What are your experiences like? What are some beginner exercises you recommend to get into shape? I used to play soccer in high school but that was like 3 years again… I feel old :( LOL

Fall is in full motion! What are some of your favorite things to do this time of year? I know I promised a post on DIY Halloween costumes but I just found an awesome video on YouTube that I have stuck in my mind so I’ll share that! I will be posting Halloween pictures on my next blog.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUL1pXk5wmU

In about 2 weeks, keep an eye out for my first video blog! It’ll be my first time doing something like it so I hope all goes well LOL

Catch you soon! Live Life, Love Life, Live Large!

-Jess :)

Bittersweet

Today, October 19th, 2014 marks the 9th week of school! That means that we have 7 weeks left. My advice to everyone is that you are meeting with your professors and advisors to make sure that you are doing the best you can.

On Friday, UNIDOS sponsored a dance to close Hispanic Heritage Month in the Regina Res Center and got a head start on Diversity week. Here are some pictures.

UNIDOS Dance

UNIDOS Dance

UNIDOS Dance

UNIDOS Dance

 

UNIDOS Dance

UNIDOS Dance

UNIDOS Dance

UNIDOS Dance

UNIDOS Dance

UNIDOS Dance

UNIDOS Dance

UNIDOS Dance

Follow UNIDOS on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram

Follow UNIDOS on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram

Saturday was Sweetest Day! I spent a wonderful afternoon with my partner. He came to my house with flowers and chocolates. TOTALLY SURPRISED ME! Then we went to eat at bd’s Mongolian Grill (it’s my favorite place). Usually we go to the one in Naperville but this time we went to the one on Bolingbrook. The place is located within a mini mall called the Pomenade. I didn’t even know of this place before saturday but its so nice!

Pomenade Mall in Bolingbrook

Pomenade Mall in Bolingbrook

Sunday was a nice family day. My little cousin slept over and played all day with my little brothers. His parents came later that evening and I got to hold and play with my two baby cousins. It gives me baby fever sometimes :/ LOL

I got my half of my midterms back! I got a C on my political theory midterm and I also got a C on my criminal justice – juvenile justice midterm. It was intense. It was 25 multiple choice plus a short essay and a long essay! Talk about college :( lol

GOOD LUCK EVERYONE!

Midterm Mayhem

We are officially reaching the middle of the semester. We are in Week 7 and Midterms are taking over. I am freaking out because I have exams to study for and papers to turn in. In the past two weeks I have had 2 papers to turn in plus a midterm paper. Talk about writing my fingers off. But on the bright side I have been having mini-adventures to release stress and get away from the books. On Monday, October 6th, Michael (my boyfriend) and I went to the Bulls Preseason Game vs the Wizards. Even though the Bulls lost, we took lots of pictures! Check it out!

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I’ve been working really hard to finish up the details of our UNIDOS events and I am excited to say we will be hosting a dance to celebrate the end of Hispanic Heritage Month! Check out our flyer! If anyone has any questions or ideas for events they want to see from UNIDOS, feel free to shot us an email at sxu.unidos@gmail.com

Screenshot (2)

UNIDOS is also on social media now! Check out our flyer and like our page on Facebook and follow us on Twitter & Instagram.

Screenshot (7)

This weekend is a super special one. Michael has family coming in from California and we will be spending Saturday downtown. We’ll probably be going to the field museum and doing a lot of shopping! I better lock up my wallet. It’s going to be hurting pretty soon. I will be uploading tons of pictures so keep tuned!

woman-looking-for-money-in-wallet-300x227 http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photo-young-woman-shopping-bags-image10531895

Halloween is coming up! I will have a post dedicated to Halloween and costumes and other fun DIY projects for you guys to try out!

halloween

Campus Ministry is having a Women’s retreat! I went on this retreat as a freshman and met some of the most amazing women. I made a lot of good friends and got closer to my best friends. I was also a leader on this retreat and gave a speech on beauty. I encourage all you queens on campus to sign up and experience this wonderful program. You will not regret it. It is truly captivating. Here is the flyer for more info and some pictures from my experiences.

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Good luck with your midterms! Stay positive & reward yourself. It’s the little things that count. I want to have a video blog one day. But I’m a little stuck on things to talk about. Let me know your ideas or questions or topics you think I should touch on! All your support is greatly appreciated!

Peace, Love, & Blessings!