Spring Break Adventures

It’s been a few weeks since spring break ended, but I realized I never posted any updates.

David and I took a mini road trip out to Vermont. We went to the Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream Factory Tour, which was a lot of fun. We also found an amazing bakery with delicious cupcakes.

As for life after spring break – it’s pretty much been working on school projects and applying to jobs. I can’t believe classes are over in 3 weeks, and I graduate in May! This year has passed by so quickly – in just 6 days I’ll be celebrating my 26th birthday.

I’m really excited for my mom to come to graduation. I have already planned so many sightseeing activities, as this is her first time on the east coast. I wish my brothers could come as well, but it’s not economically feasible, especially since they will already be traveling to our wedding.

The weather is finally starting to warm up – it’s in the 60s! – and pretty much all the snow has melted. It’s like night and day, really.

As my projects are wrapping up, I’m going to make sure I post some updates here regarding what I’ve learned and what my reflections are.

New England Adventures

I wanted to share some of my recent adventures.

One of my close friends from California came to visit last week, and we were able to explore a few different parts of New England.

One of our first stops was Maine. We had some of the best clam chowder and lobster.

We also saw a life-sized moose made out of chocolate at Len Libby’s.

We were also able to explore so much of Boston.

  • We walked the entire Freedom Trail
  • We ate Italian food and cannolis from Mike’s Pastry in the North End.
  • We went to the Museum of Science
  • We took pictures on Acorn Street
  • We found the Good Will Hunting bench and walked around the Boston Common and Public Garden while feeding some squirrels
  • We went to the Cheers bar
  • We went on a tour of Fenway Park

The only thing we weren’t able to do was go on a duck tour on account of the river being pretty much frozen.

Overall, I have to say it was a well-deserved break and now I’m feeling well-rested and ready for this semester.

Winter Break Recap

I had originally come up with an entire list of things I should do during winter break, none of which I can remember now. I ended up catching up on sleep, which I think is a good thing. My body certainly needed it.

Among sleep, however, I also did the following:

  • went to my first Hanukkah party
  • pet sitted some rats

  • crocheted a lot
  • learned how to cook (!!!) an omelette, bulgogi beef, and spaghetti
  • walked around Lake Quannapowitt

  • and today I went to the Minute Man National Historic Park and all the old history lessons came to life

I’m incredibly excited to start my winter session course on Monday! I will be taking Joe Blatt’s Informal Learning for Children. It’s going to be an intense two weeks but I’m looking forward to it.

Adventures with my Brother

IMG_6432

My little brother visited last week. I was glad he was able to make the trek out here. He was only here for a few days but we were still able to get out and explore some neat places.

The first place we went to was the New England Aquarium. If you get a chance, you should check it out. I didn’t realize just how many different species of penguins there were.

We also explored a bit of Boston Common and the Public Garden. We found that the squirrels there are extremely friendly and come up to you. There was a bit of snow still left over from the previous week and we had fun throwing snowballs at each other.

We had originally planned on going on a brewery tour but we never got up early enough due to staying up late and watching movies. We did, however, end up exploring the Mt. Auburn Cemetery. It’s absolutely gorgeous. It’s nicely landscaped and a great place for taking a walk. There are a few lakes and benches to sit at and admire your surroundings. We also went up to the top of this tower in the middle and could see all of Cambridge. It was really neat to see the various architecture styles, and to image who all these people might have once been.

We also took a brief walk through the Harvard Fogg Art Musuem. We didn’t get to walk through all the exhibits, but it was still nice. I plan on going back to explore more of it later.

Among the other things we did were eat. My brother’s favorites were Tasty Burger and L.A. Burdick.  We also went to The Asgard, an Irish pub and restaurant, to celebrate David’s birthday on Sunday. Toscanini’s is also an awesome ice cream spot. We discovered 1369 Coffeehouse, which is right in Central Square. I’m absolutely in love with their Almond Joy hot chocolate.

It’s going to be a long time until I see my brother and other family (graduation), so it was nice to spend some time together, even if it was only for a little bit.

Exploring Cape Cod

IMG_6400

Now that my semester is just about over and my projects are essentially done, I’ve been taking advantage of the extra free time to explore my surroundings. That is one thing I wish I did in my undergrad years. I figured while I’m here, I might as well explore what the east coast has to offer.

Today we took a mini day trip to Cape Cod. Our original plan was to go all the way to Provincetown but then we decided on a random city called Sandwich. We headed out later than we planned on, and realized that the sun would be setting by the time we got to Provincetown.

It was a little tough at first trying to find a beach that didn’t having a ridiculous parking fee. ($15 for a day?! No, thank you.) We drove around aimlessly for a bit and ended up finding one kind of tucked away that had free parking.

We had to cross this bridge to get to the beach and Walter was terrified. I had no idea he was so scared of bridges/heights. He planted himself down and wouldn’t budge, and we ended up having to carry him.

IMG_6410

The beach itself was a little cold but I didn’t mind. It was less crowded. It was also nice to see a different landscape. I was also surprised to see that Gordie and Walter were jumping and running in the water. My brother FaceTimed me and he was also at the beach in Pacifica. We thought it was hilarious that we were both at the beach at the same time, albeit on opposite sides of the country.

My youngest brother is coming to visit this week, and I’m really excited to explore Massachusetts further and show him around. One of the places we’re exploring is the New England Aquarium. The Boston Public Library has a free museum pass program and I was able to reserve a pass for one of the days he’s here.

On that note, there probably won’t be as much academic content on this blog for the next month or so. All my fall courses ended last week, and other than a project presentation this week and turning in some final papers, I’m pretty much done until I start my winter session in January.

I do plan on updating this blog about my winter adventures, though!

Apple Picking

On Saturday, Sarah and I went on a apple picking trip organized by the Office of Student Affairs. We went to the Honey Pot Hill Orchards in Stow, MA. I’m glad I went, as I was originally contemplating not going when I woke up and saw it was pouring outside. Although it was still cold, the rain eventually stopped.

Admission is based on the bag/amount of apples you’d like to pick. It’s $16 for a medium sized bag, and $25 for a large sized bag. Apparently, the medium sized bag is enough for 2 people, and the large sized bag is enough for 5 people. The medium sized bag was still a lot of apples, so we ended up splitting the cost of one bag between three of us and then dividing the apples at the end.

There was also a pumpkin patch and a little farm house with a bakery. I wish they had some savory food, though, as eating apple cider donuts and apples for lunch in addition to drinking apple cider was a bit too sugary for even me. You could also buy various spreads and preserves at the farm house. I ended up buying some apple butter, which I had never tried before. It’s pretty tasty!

We also went on a hay ride and in retrospect, I don’t think it was worth the $2. We spent a long time waiting for it in the cold, and then we realized we could have just walked to the farm house in 5 minutes. I mean, I guess now I could say I’ve been on a hay ride.

Regardless, I still enjoyed the trip. The trees are starting to change colors, and it’s so pretty. I know California has fall, too, but the colors aren’t as vibrant or dramatic as they are here. I was seriously so happy being surrounded by all these pretty trees. I also didn’t realize just how many different varieties of apples there were. There were so many I hadn’t even heard of before.

(On a side note, I am seriously digging the camera on my new iPhone 6. It is a serious upgrade from my iPhone 4 – thanks David! I have a Canon PowerShot SX260 HS, but I’m finding my phone’s camera to be just as good, if not slightly better, than my digital camera. It’s also convenient that I don’t have to connect my phone to my computer – I can transfer all my pictures through iCloud. )

Exploring Salem

Today I finally got to explore Salem, which has been a dream of mine since I was a kid. I’ve always been fascinated by these sorts of things, and I remember reading about Salem and really wanting to go there.

Granted, as a kid, I didn’t fully understand the entire scope of the Salem Witch Trials and how just about anyone could be accused of witchcraft and subsequently killed. I kinda just focused on the word “witches” and in my head I pictured the witches from various story books and films I had seen.

Continue reading