From the day I landed on the runway of JFK airport to the day I started classes again, it was 81 days. Those 81 days represent that time most college students relish in: summer vacation. While most of my summer consisted of working at my internship and my job at the local YMCA, there were a few highlights that I enjoyed immensely.
June 29th: I celebrated my 21st birthday in a unique way…I worked 10 hours! Unfortunately my birthday fell on the last day of an important horticultural industry conference that was being hosted by the professor I worked for! However I did get to complete one of the things on the “Big Red Ambition” list. This list is comprised of 161 things every cornellian should do before they graduate! My dad and my brother also came to visit and my father bought me my first drink in the United States while my boyfriend bought me a wonderful new camera!
July 4th: A very happy independence day that presented me with my first opportunity to try out my new camera! What do you think? Not too bad for my first few pictures huh?
July 16th: I traveled home my family’s annual Jamboree (which is still affectionately called the “Weanie Roast”)! My mother and her five sisters drag their children (and this year their grandchildren even) to my grandmother’s backyard where we all pitch tents, tell stories, and swim in the lake at all hours of the night! The Weanie Roast always concludes with us traveling to our favorite campground for one last day of BBQs and outdoor fun! Beaverkill Campgrounds provides a great place to disconnect from technology and re-connect with the great outdoors! The Beaverkill River is fed from underground springs in the Catskill Mountains; the water is often so cold that my younger cousins can only stand it for about 20 minutes at a time!
August 13th: Another family reunion that was even larger than the last! This reunion is for my paternal grandmother’s side of the family: the Higgins clan. My grandmother was one of thirteen brothers and sisters; all of whom have had children and grandchildren of their own! At every of these biannual reunions I meet more and more distant relatives! Although now, there seems to be quite a generation gap; see the second photo below for proof!
My Great-Aunts and Uncles at the Family Reunion.
My generation at the family reunion.
August 19th: Russ and I attended my cousin’s wedding together! I was one of her Bridesmaids and I was extremely happy to watch her marry her high school boyfriend of seven years! It was a beautiful small ceremony held outside and we were fortunate enough that the thunderstorms held off until about ten minutes after the reception was over! It also provided a great opportunity to get a picture with my whole family dressed up (an occurrence that has never happened before!).
My brother, dad, me, and Russ!
While my summer wasn’t one that consisted of traveling across the globe or community service trips, it was a perfect summer to get re-acclimated to living in Ithaca and preparing the difficult semester I have ahead of me!