Life is a succession of lessons which must be lived to be understood. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thursday, October 28, 2010

On the Rolling Plains of Dixie......

Last weekend was officially the best weekend ever! After you leave a place like Auburn, you always miss it, but you never truly realize how much you miss it until you go back to visit. Last weekend was my homecoming, not because that was the weekend set aside by the university, but because every football weekend is homecoming in Auburn. The energy in the atmosphere is contagious and inspiring. The people are welcoming and know how to have a great time. The fans truly BELIEVE in Auburn, and LOVE it!

My journey home was an interesting one (I expect nothing less for my life). I was preparing to leave the University of Illinois around 3:30pm to catch my flight at the Champaign Airport departing at 5pm! Getting to the airport was my first challenge, because none of the girls at the house had a car. Around 3:45pm I was lucky enough to get a ride and head on my way! As I was checking in my bag, I was told that it was 5lbs overweight (shocker) and that the flight had been overbooked. They were asking for volunteers to ride a cab to Bloomington, IN to catch a flight from there to Chicago, where I would then be able to catch my connecting flight to Atlanta. Seeing as how this wouldn't delay my arrival to Atlanta, and I would be receiving a $300 travel voucher, I figured I might as well volunteer. The flight was leaving in about 45 minutes, so I had to go through security and wait at the gate to see if everyone showed up for the flight. Turns out everyone wanted to make their flight that day, so I received my travel voucher and a voucher for the cab, and then I headed off to meet my yellow mini-van chariot.

The cab ride to Bloomington was a slightly awkward experience. Good thing this job sort of prepares you for awkward. My cab driver was Chatty Charlie, and felt the need to share his life story with me. I guess I did prompt him by asking why he chose to drive a cab for a living, but I was not expecting the response I got. He even said, "Well, since we have an hour I can give you the full story!" Luckyyyyyy me! Here's my condensed version of his life.....He's from Boston, went to a small college, fell in love, moved to another school for her, got his heart broken, moved to Illinois with one of his buddies, drove cabs, likes to go on trips, works half the year to make money, spends it on trips the rest of the year....Winner! But he's happy and enjoys his life so more power to him; however, after this story he came across as a little creepy and I began to fear for my life. This is where my over dramatic nature kicked into gear and I began to envision Charlie driving off into an Indiana cornfield to murder me. I could not force these thoughts out of my mind, no matter how hard I tried. While my heart raced as I feared for my life, I texted my friends and told them that I love them, and that no matter what may happen to me that they should keep on partying. Where these thoughts of being murdered in a cornfield came from, I will never know. Maybe it was the result of too many scary movies, and the fact that I was sleep deprived at the moment which made it easier to fabricate a false sense of danger in my mind. Whatever the cause, when the cab drive glared in the rear view mirror and said, "Almost there! If I can remember this shortcut correctly," the panic became too much for me to handle. I quickly took a survey of my surroundings and google mapped my exact location. Turns out that we were in fact close to the airport, so I had convinced myself that in the event that Charlie took off into an unexpected field I was fully capable of running away (despite the heels I was wearing). My luggage would unfortunately have to remain behind, but since my phone charger was in my purse I felt it would be smart to at least bring that along with me. In the end, the hyped up sense of danger was unnecessary. I arrived with plenty of time to the airport, and managed to catch my flight to Chicago! I eventually made it to Atlanta at 11:30pm, and headed off to AUBURN!!!!!

The two hour ride from the airport to Auburn seemed to last for DAYYYYS! But soon enough I arrived just in time to greet the BOTE boys (and Robbie, Cory, Ryan, Megan, and Kelly) and walk over to OBaG! I sure have missed all of those people and the fun times we always had together. On Friday, I got up and went to see the old office and eat lunch with Gwen and Elizabeth. I've only been gone a short 4 months, and it feels like I've missed so much. I spent the rest of the day running errands and preparing myself for the great game the following day. Friday night we had dinner at Mikata (because it means FUN) and a girls night out to celebrate Katie and Matt's engagement. We surprised her with a candlelight (orchestrated by the fabulous Jordan Jones) and then headed downtown to cause some trouble.

Saturday morning came very quickly, but it was gameday, so we woke up ready to go as if we were kids ready to open our presents on Christmas morning (or at least that's how I felt)! At first when I was getting ready I was a little stressed out that my face tattoo was in my purse in Jordan's car, but she came to the rescue by dragging my purse to the tailgate for me. As soon as I arrived, my first order of business was to put on the face tattoo and grab a cold snack. I never realized how much exercise you really get on a game day, until I was walking around in my boots attempting to meet up with everyone I needed to see while in town. I feel terrible because I didn't get a chance to see everyone I wanted to, but there's always next time!

For anyone who didn't get a chance to see the Auburn/LSU game, it was AMAZING! The Auburn Tigers totally DOMINATED, and Toomer's corner definitely got rolled! I don't think I could have picked a more perfect game to attend! As sad as I was to leave on Monday morning, I know that soon I will get to go back and see all of my favorites! But for now things couldn't be better. I have great friends, an amazing family, a wonderful job, and the rest of this year is going to pass so quickly.

This weekend I will be in Chapel Hill with Allison, the next weekend I get to head down to Baton Rouge for a weekend with my sissys, then I spend two weeks in Iowa before heading back to Auburn for the weekend before Thanksgiving! After a week break for Thanksgiving (and of course a little Iron Bowl action) I will be traveling back to my girlies at East Carolina to finish out work for the year. Closing out 2010 will consist of my 25th birthday in Indy (BRipple here we come) and two weeks at home with the fam for Christmas. The new year plans are still up in the air, but I'm sure it will be a time to remember! I can't believe that 2010 is almost over, but I can't wait to see what 2011 has in store for me!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Auburn Bound!

I can't believe this day is finally here! In a few short hours, I will be picked up from the Atlanta Airport by my sissy, and taken to Auburn for a much awaited vacation. This summer when I was debating how to use my vacation days, the first resource I checked was the Auburn football schedule. Homecoming was an option, but when it comes down to only having 7 vacation days this semester(and weekends count as vaca days) I knew I wanted to spend my time with good friends and watching a great game! LSU weekend was the obvious choice, because no matter what I know I will have a great time (friends with me last year in Baton Rouge remember those all you can eat hot dogs and pulled pork sandwiches? BecauseI do!). I have waited for this day to come since the last week of June and that seems like FOREVER ago!

I woke up this morning to 3 texts from friends telling me how excited they are that I'm coming back in town. Then I talked to more people online about it between my meetings today, and since then have received another 8 messages from people telling me I had better come see them. THAT is why I miss Auburn. The people I met during my short time (6 years haha) there are some of the best friends I could have ever made. Growing up is such a strange and exciting experience. Most of my conversations these days involve, so where are you now? And that isn't always them asking me. Most of my friends from Auburn are slowly graduating and starting their lives. I'm glad that we are able to keep in touch, and hope that this communication last past this year. The wonderful thing about a place like Auburn is that everyone loves to go back to visit! Everyone who attends school there considers Auburn to be their "home away from home", and although some of the buildings and the students change every year, the town and the spirit and the people never change! I'm proud to be an Auburn Tiger because Auburn has given me so much in life, and it's the kind of place you want to give back to!

This is why I can't wait to get back to Auburn in the next 10 hours! I believe in Auburn, AND LOVE IT!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Ode to Club Ryan

To continue my posts dedicated to Auburn, I would like to take this moment to share with you what is quite possibly my FAVORITE place in Auburn. There is no way that this Ode could possibly come close to expressing the experiences I have shared with my closest friend on Ryan Street, but here is my attempt. I would like to credit Emily Doucette with her contributions of phrases and memories to incorporate into the Ode. I now present you the Ode to Club Ryan!

Ode to Club Ryan

Although I’ve never lived here,
It sure feels like home,
Each evening I visit,
So I won’t be alone.

Since 2007,
Or maybe before,
I’ve been here a lot,
Because the residents I adore!

I should thank Amy Lee,
For bringing us together,
Watching Glee and some Greys,
Even eating Family Dinner!

You’re split level layout,
And yard in the back,
Make it perfect for parties,
With our favorite cold snacks.

Be careful to remember,
That bottom step is tricky,
You may slip and fall,
Into something that’s sticky.

During bonfire weekends,
Our favorite pregame,
Be careful with “Shug”,
like a moth to the flame!

Oh! The comments “Shug” makes,
Someone toss her a rope,
Because I can honestly say,
She’s slick (like a wet bar of soap)!

Party starts in the kitchen,
Turn the 80’s music up,
Move it into the living room,
For “anything but cups”!

Where’s Sally you ask,
It’s been over an hour,
Oh, wait, yea that’s right,
She’s still taking a shower!

We’re pranksters some times,
And we won’t say a word,
About the time we got Sally,
With the Tootsie Roll Terd!

I should mention myself,
Feelings won’t be too hurt,
Because at parties we throw,
I’m usually the flirt.

The times that we’ve had,
Are not all that bad,
And now that I’m gone,
I’m really quite sad!

The pre-parties and tailgates,
And all jello shots,
All the Momma G’s nachos,
And girls looking so hott!

To my favorites still there,
And others who’ve gone,
I miss you so much,
But I’m coming back home!

This time on Thursday,
I will be on a plane,
Heading back to the
Loveliest Village on the Plains!

GOD BLESS good friends, good times, good bbq, and AUBURN! WAR EAGLE! See ya tomorrow night!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Ode to the BOTE

The second Ode I have in honor of my visit to Auburn this weekend is to the BOTE! Many of you may not know what that is and that's ok. The BOTE is one of my best memories of Auburn, and the people I met there are my FAVORITES!!!! This one's for you boys!

Ode to the BOTE
This one's for you,
Billy, Sean, Mike,
and Sir Webster, too!

Fun times we've had,
And the good times keep rollin',
The memories we've made,
Were certainly ballin'!

The girls all show up,
At around 10:30,
And if Sean isn't home,
the place is probably dirty.

Pre-parties and beer pong,
and the fun games we play,
Beach volleyball and hoops,
Beating Mike "Spike" Ramsay!

So close to the OBaG,
We go there a lot,
With the guys from upstairs,
And we love to take shots.

We'll make it downtown,
A weekend or two,
But Webb takes forever,
Trying to perfect his hair-do.

We're all growing up,
And things aren't the same,
With Billy now gone,
Things got really lame.

A reunion is coming soon,
in a short weeks time,
And I look forward to the trouble,
That I'm sure to find.

THe tailgate will be mind-blowing,
And practically illegal,
Hangin with the B.O.T.E,
Hell yea, WAR DAMN EAGLE!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Ode to Club Genelda...things were GREAT in 08!

Being on the road gives me time to think back on the good ole days, and today was no different. In preparation to return to Auburn next week, I've been thinking about my favorite memories from my 6 years there! This morning I woke up and for some reason Club Genelda has been on my mind all day. My second senior year was the best year ever. 2008 honestly was GREAT! So many memories were made that year that I will NEVER forget. My roomies were the best ever, and the parties we had were amazing. I sure will miss that tiny apartment behind Arbys and India. In honor of my return to the loveliest village on the plains, I've decided to dedicate my posts this week to my Auburn memories. So in honor of Club Genelda, I dedicate this post.

Ode to Club Genelda
On the corner (of Thomas and Genelda),
With a front yard hammock,
There you sit,
In dark red brick.

So close to campus,
You were such a find.
For 4 college girls,
Those girls of mine.

We moved right in,
Unloaded Buddy,
Gave Corey a desk,
because we had no money.

We enjoy a good time,
Theme parties we had.
First came the Worst Dressed,
And our potluck dinner wasn't too bad.

With our green couches,
Cute tables,
Big mirror, and flowers,
We decorated so cute and we sure loved our cable!

DVR was our friend,
As we watched Biggest Loser before working out,
OTH and Gossip Girl,
And of course Wipeout!

Roomie dinners and pictures,
And all the birthday parties,
FUN tailgates with the BOTE,
And headin' downtown with our hotties!

We walked every weekend,
Because your location was the best.
Sometimes made friendships along the way,
And got subway....EAT FRESH!

Fall semester came and went,
And spring semester was next.
An addition to our family was made,
And he was of the opposite sex!

No, no, it's not what you think,
Our new roommate was tiny.
His name was Bruno,
And at times he was whiny!

He chewed up the carpet,
And he sure liked to bark,
But I loved that little weenie dog,
When we took him to the park.

Fond memories we have,
Especially of Jeffie,
Cinco de Mayo and Spring Break,
Then it all ended in a jiffy!

Graduation soon came,
And we said our goodbyes,
Moving on in our lives,
We sure miss those good times!

You never cease to amaze.
The best times we've now had,
We will remember you always!

Here's a video slide show of the times I enjoyed at Club Genelda with my Favorites!

Monday, October 11, 2010

A Day in the Life of a Sorority Consultant

To say that this is an average day in my life would be a lie, because there is no such thing as an average day in the life of a consultant. Some days you're on your feet from 7am until 11pm, and other days you sit and wonder what you should be doing because you're so used to going non-stop! My formal recruitment visits have ended for the semester, so now I'm working on chapter development and officer training. There is a lot more time that I have to decide how it's spent and exactly how productive I'm going to be that day. So today, I'm going to keep track of my activities to see exactly what goes down on this Monday.

9:30am - Wake up! I slept through my 8:00am alarm and woke up at 8:30am, only to realize that I didn't have anything pressing to do, so I might as well sleep a little longer.

10am - Showered and ready...time for Facebook. I check status updates, and chat with Justin (Phi Sig consultant at VCU). I send several messages back and forth with my Grand Big, who has recently been appointed an AF in New Orleans!

11am - I've now made a To Do List for the day, and am still on FB. I have now sent messages to my sorority family telling them how much I miss them, because it's been FAR too long since I've seen them! Maybe now would be a good time to get off of FB and start that To Do List......


Water bottle...filled.


Item #1 on To Do List....DONE! E-mailed Chapter President of my next chapter to coordinate my travel arrangements to their chapter tomorrow. Now time to work on the Psi Recruitment Report.

G-Chatting with favorite past time!

Another item on the To Do List Complete! E-mails fly off the to do list pretty quickly!

11:15am - All emails from my to do list have been sent. Now the reports are the only items hanging over my head. Still g-chatting....maybe I should check internet here is less than reliable....gotta restart my computer....

11:28am - still haven't started those I'm skyping with my sissy, Stephanie. Still g-chatting...and now group bbm-ing Holla at the ELCs.

My thoughts:
Oh yea, we have a conference call at 12:30pm....should I eat lunch now or after?

Oh no, oh no....I'm back on Facebook....exit NOW! says that it's 76 degrees, and the high is 89! WHY did I mail my summer clothes home last week?!?!?!? Ohhhh that's right, because I've been in Wisconsin, and then it was even in the 60's in Ohio for the past 2 weeks. How was I supposed to know there would be a heat wave in INDIANA!

What should I be for Halloween? Maybe I can research those options before my conference call in an hour. I've been working for at least 30 minutes, so it's ok to take a break now...right?

Maybe I should go eat lunch...I'm not really hungry, but it's something to do....

11:34am - LUNCH time!

Well lunch was interesting. I had some mashed potatoes and salad. The beef wasn't great so I just had two bites and stopped eating, but at least I got to eat.

11:57am - Time to look for a Halloween Costume! This year I will be in Chapel Hill with Allison for Halloween!!! I can't wait to see her face! =)

Still chatting on BBM and G-Chat...

I have a starbucks gift card...I don't drink chocolate would be nice if it wasn't so hott....I guess I can save it for a few weeks.

I think I'm gonna whiten my teeth....maybe after the CC? No...I'll just do it now!

I wonder when I will get a chance to run today? Maybe after dinner tonight...that would be good, yea that's what I will do!

12:14pm - Back on FB! I have a problem! Ohhh already FB chatting ppl. Still on G-Chat, BBM, and now Skype again.

I just switched the way I part my hair because I wanted to change my look.

Re-filled water bottle.

My teeth are now whiter! :)

12:31pm - Conference call time!

Just spilled water on my skirt...perfect! Oh well!

Can't focus....closing out of FB and G-Chat

1:42pm - WAY too much running through my head. Conference Call ended, skype chatted with Allison, talked to Meg on the phone, and back on FB. I need to get my life together! That conference call added several items to my To Do list, but it's nice outside, so I may go take a break.....and maybe write a report that's due tomorrow.

Re-filled water bottle.

24-Hour Report....Sent. This time it's more like a 70 hour report....cross off To Do List.

Changed my hair part back to the usual side....that just felt too weird.

2:10pm - I've moved my office outside.

It's a BEAUTIFUL day, and don't want it to go to waste. Now I'm turning up slacker radio and finalizing the Psi Recruitment Report.

Wow! It's windy! And I could TOTALLY use my sunglasses!

Sure do wish that girl would e-mail me back about my travel arrangements for tomorrow....maybe I will text her before dinner and call her before bed if she hasn't responded. Yes, Definitely. That's gonna happen.

3:32pm - Emails have been steadily flowing in on this lovely Monday. I'm still in my outdoor office, and LOVING my job because of my ability to do this. Psi report is almost complete, radio is crankin some great country tunes, I've been skyping Allison (I MISS HER), and I'm about to check out FB, AGAIN! hahaha

Some how my to do list has doubled, and I've been steadily crossing off items all day...hmmmmm!

Wait, what was I about to do?

Oh that's right! Finish my report!

I've seen a total of 7 people all day, and that was at lunch. There are 100 women who live here, I hope they're all actually in class.

4:30pm- Still working on Reports....Just skyped with Justin and took a break. Back to work!

Ahhhhh today has gotten so busy. About to skype with one of my bosses about a chapter I will visit on Friday, emailing another boss about a chapter I am currently visiting, and still have not heard from the chapter I will be visiting tomorrow about my travel arrangements. Texting her now!! Today is DEFINITELY MONDAY!'s already 5pm!!!! ahhhh!

I just tried a sample of Emergen-C Health and Energy Booster...Tangerine's not too bad! 1000mg of Vitamin C...that seems a bit excessive!

5:35pm - I'm attempting to wrap up everything for now so I can go eat some dinner.

7:50pm - Finally back from dinner, and some fun chats with the ladies. I believe I'm going to take a short break and catch up on some TV! Bring on some 90210!

Oh yea, still haven't heard back from the chapter I'm traveling to tomorrow....Perfect!

8pm - I've reached the point in my day where I would like to go to sleep so that tomorrow can start. Too bad that's not really an option.

Maybe I should take a long hot shower.

So much for that run today.

Talking to Allison on Skype about this eposide of 90210! INTENSE!

9pm - I think I'm calling it a night. Gossip Girl and bed time. Tomorrow I have to pack up and head to my next chapter! GOOD NIGHT(after a few more checked emails)!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Exercising Flexibility

Last night, I saw my life flash before my eyes during a recruitment party. We were having a quesadilla night and had a crockpot of cheese dip and two quesadilla makers on a table. While I was sitting in a chair by the table, I noticed that the power cord of the crockpot was about to be caught in the quesadilla maker in the back. As I reached for the cord, the girl lifted the quesadilla maker to use it, and the cord was pinched just before shooting sparks and a cloud of smoke in my lap. I won't lie....I panicked and I'm pretty sure I screamed. There was no major damage done, other than my extremely elevated heart rate, and the fact that the power cord to the crockpot was burned completely in half! This alone made it my favorite night of recruitment thus far!

My stay in Columbus, OH is coming to an end. I've been here since September 25th, and this has come to feel like home. I live in the house with all the women, eat lunch and dinner here, shop around town, walk around campus on nice days, and have even started tanning at a place down the street. They've even introduced me to parents and boyfriends!!! Being here for two full weeks has made me forget how to pack! I've managed to stuff everything back into my suitcase, and thanks to mom's gift I was able to weigh my suitcase (49lbs....NICE!). However, I have a box of clothes/shoes that will be going to the post office (3rd trip this year), and shipped to Auburn (Steph's gonna be getting more mail from me).

The next stop on my schedule was Purdue; however, my visit was supposed to be October 8-15th, and I learned this week that they have Fall Break October 8-12th. My visit would be slightly unproductive without the women there to meet with, not to mention the fact that the house is closed during the break so I would be homeless (a shopping buggy and trash bag full of cans is not a good look for me). So this week has been spent not knowing exactly where I will be next week. This is where the "flexibility" my boss is always talking about comes into practice. Normally, before this job, I would have been stressed out that I was flying out in 5 days and had no clue where I was going from the airport. Since this job began, I've become way more relaxed about traveling. There's no need to stress about the unknown, just go with the flow. My boss contacted me 2 nights ago and informed me that I would be traveling to Indiana University from October 8th to October 12th, and then I will be visiting Purdue from the 12th to October 15th. Then I'm back on track. No biggie!

I'm actually excited about this slight change of plans, because now I will have the opportunity to meet another group of women and see their campus. I get to go to Big Man on Campus tomorrow night, and hang out during homecoming week. This should be exciting! It is also important to mention that the Beta Pi women at IU have a separate room for guests with a private bath (and a tv) in the house, so basically this next few days will be like staying at the Hilton of sorority houses.

While I am sad to leave OSU, I also look forward to being in Auburn 2 short weeks from now! In 14 days I will be driving from the Atlanta Airport to the Loveliest Village on the Plains to be reunited with my FAVORITES! In the time between now and then, I will have flown 500 miles from Columbus to Indianapolis(including connecting flights), driven 250 miles from Indy to Bloomington,IN to Lafayette,IN to Champaign, IL, and finally flown 850 miles from Illinois to Atlanta! All of which makes the 100 mile drive to Auburn seem short, and will make my time in the next 2 weeks pass by very quickly! (1700 miles in two weeks...not too bad!)

Monday, October 4, 2010

Sweet Home Alabama....and Sweet Tea!

Just a few things I'm missing these days......

Going downtown with my favorites!


Spring Break!

AUBURN (Football!) - - - WAR EAGLE!

Theme Parties at Club Ryan!

Seeing my lover in his band (Miss Used)
Crazy Hat Bowling League Night
Fishbowls and Corn nuggets!
Momma's NACHOS on Sundays!

There are so many more things (and people) I'm missing these days, more blog posts to follow!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Most Likely to Succeed?

What exactly is the definition of success?

the favorable or prosperous termination of attempts or endeavors.
the attainment of wealth, position, honors, or the like.
a successful performance or achievement: The play was an instant success.
a person or thing that is successful: She was a great success on the talk show.
Obsolete . outcome.

So then what exactly does it mean to succeed? In high school, I was voted "Most Likely to Succeed". Lame, I know. All things considered, I consider my life a success so far, but how exactly is that measured?

Is it measured by your education?
It took me 5 1/2 years to graduate from Auburn. Not so much because it was hard, and more so because I can't figure out what I want to do with my life. There are so many options that I want to try them all! I changed my major 3 times, and took countless classes that didn't apply to my major at all. Eventually, I decided on Building Science and was able to graduate last December. My grades were good, and I got involved on campus. I joined a sorority and held several offices before becoming President. Then I held a VP role on Panhellenic Exec and planned recruitment for 1200 potential new members. I was a hostess for the swim and dive team, and participated on several campaigns while in school. I was asked to participate in the Greek Congressional Visits in D.C. to lobby Congress to pass the Collegiate Housing and Infrastructure Act as a representative for Alpha Xi Delta and Auburn University. I was a member of Auburn's Design Build competition team and won an award for best presenter. Yes, I realize how lame I am at times. But does that mean I am "succeeding"? It's easy to say this much about your college involvement when you're there forever (I'm the female Van Wilder).

By the time I finally managed to graduate, most of my high school graduating class was married, and several even had children. They were out working, buying houses, starting families, and settling down in their lives. Is that success? Because if so, I am definitely not "succeeding".

Is it measured by having a significant other?
If success is based on having that significant other in your life that you love and rely on every day, then I am doing the opposite of success. I did date a guy for 6 years through high school, and most of college. Me constantly changing my mind about what I want in life didn't make that relationship very successful, and unfortunately couldn't go any farther than it did. Since then, I haven't dated a guy for longer than 3 months before they move along to the next girl. At times that kind of sucks, but really I enjoy the independence I have to live my life for me right now. I won't lie that I've gotten to the point where it would be nice to have that guy to eat dinner with and curl up on the couch to watch a movie. When the time is right, I know that the guy I need will walk into my life, and until then I will keep living my life how I want to. Some of you reading this probably know exactly what I mean by this.

As far as children and starting a family.....yea, eventually I would like that, but I'm young and am able to take this time in my life to worry about me and not a tiny human, so I'm ok with not having that yet. Honestly I'm only 24, so I have some time to make that decision. When I do decide to have kids, I do know I want a BIG family, so eventually that will be on my agenda.

Is it defined by having lots of friends?
If this is the case, I am a total success! This is the one area of my life I feel so blessed and I have an abundance of close relationships. My friends are the kind of people you can rely on to be there for you no matter what. As we've grown together in college, we are now moving on our separate ways for work; however, we maintain our close ties and communication. I would drop anything I am doing if my friends needed me, and I know that they would do the same for me. Since graduating, I have made another group of amazing friends, the other ELCs I work with. Not just the other Alpha Xi consultants, but some of the fraternity consultants as well. Friends are what keep you sane in life, and they make each day worth living. My best friends are my sisters, Bridgett and Stephanie. I talk to them as much as I can, which is never enough for me. Being on the road is tough and lonely sometimes, but having friends that email you funny stories, post fun videos on your FB wall, and who skype you when you're not busy makes life so much sweeter. I love my wonderful friends, and keep making more every day!

Is it defined by your job?
My job is definitely an interesting decision on my part. I am a traveling sorority consultant. This is by no means a career move, but the decision was the best one I could have made for myself this year. I have the opportunity to travel to other college campuses where we have a chapter, and I help train the women on recruitment conversation, confidence, and leadership skills. This year gives me the opportunity to reach out and make a difference in these young women's lives, but at the same time I've grown as a person as well. Some people look at my decision to be a "professional sorority girl" as a way of avoiding the real world; however, those people don't realize how smart I really am by taking this job. The economy isn't at the greatest point, so any job I get would have a lower salary potential, and I get to be paid to help an organization that has done so much for me personally. Those people also don't realize how challenging it is to live out of a suitcase for a year, moving from state to state every 7 days, dealing with different issues at each chapter, and constantly having to be on your toes thinking and representing the organization. There is no such thing as "off the clock" on this job, but the experience I am gaining this year will apply to ANY job I may take in the future. So while this job isn't going to lead me to being VP of a large corporation, it will provide me the opportunity to develop my skills that will land me a job with that corporation to begin my upward climb.

So with that said, am I "succeeding"?

For what my opinion is worth, here are my thoughts on the definition of what it means to "succeed".

Everyone has different plans for their life and different opportunities. I feel that knowing your limitations and setting goals for yourself just beyond those limits, and working toward those goals each day is how you are "succeeding". Once you reach those goals and expand your personal limits, then you begin to grow as a person, and can continuously set higher goals while developing necessary skills to succeed. Therefore success is measured by the person, and their individual abilities to realize they can push themselves to accomplish more for themselves and others. This is one reason why I love the vision of Alpha Xi Delta, "Inspiring Women to Realize their Potential". This belief continues to push me each day, and that is why I believe that I am "succeeding" in my life.

I don't have all the answers, and still am not 100% sure what I want to do with my life; however, I am LIVING my life and experiencing new adventures each day. The quote on my blog by Ralph Waldo Emerson says, "Life is a succession of lessons which must be lived to be understood", and I totally agree! No one is certain of what will happen each day, but I'm taking each lesson life throws my way and living it! I believe this is how we all "succeed"!