Finals have arrived

Last night, I had a dream I met Barack Obama.  I’m taking this as a sign that finals will go well.

After a wonderful weekend of hanging out with friends, studying, and praising Jesus, it’s time to tackle those tests.  The next couple days are going to be busy.  With extra library shifts, study sessions, exams, packing for break, and saying goodbye to friends who won’t be here next semester, I’m expecting the time to pass quickly.

What have I got in terms of tests?

Today I take my Visual Journalism final.  It shouldn’t be too bad.  It’s open book, open note because the professor never talked about any of the assigned readings in class.  Half the test will be on these readings and the other half will be activity-based.  We will be given a story prompt and will have to describe how we go out and capture it.  Studying for this involves organizing all the information available and knowing where to find things.

Tomorrow is the Grammar & Language final.  This is probably the hardest test I’ve had thus far in college.  We’ll be tested on the complete history of the English language, tracing the phonology, morphology, syntax, and lexicon from Old, Middle, Early Modern, Modern, to present day English.  It’s a LOT of information.  I started studying last Thursday and have been nosing my way into various study groups with classmates.  It’ll be challenging, but I think it will go well.

That’s it!  Two exams stand between me and a month off.  Let’s do this.

If you’re in the midst of finals right now, best of luck!  What are some of your coping mechanisms?

The music of wanderlust

As winter progresses in Minnesota, the days grow more and more bleak.  I look outside and can’t even see the wind turbines due to the wintry haze.  All I can see is a slushy parking lot and a snow-covered volleyball court.  With a great deal of my time dedicated to writing essays and studying for next week’s final exams, daydreaming has become a constant practice.  Last night, I had a dream I was back in Austria, exploring in the mountains with my friends.

Days like today bring out the travel bug in me.  I was raised on cross-country road trips and fifteen hour drives.  Packing a bag, getting in my car, and driving somewhere far away just for the sake of adventure is incredibly appealing.

However, since taking such a spontaneous trip is impossible at the moment, I thought I’d share some songs that bring out my wanderlust.

“Down In the Valley” The Head and the Heart

“Transistor Radio” Cloud Cult

“Wagon Wheel: Old Crow Medicine Show

Happy Friday!

Hell Week is coming

It’s the last week of classes.  Or, as my friends and I affectionately call it, Hell Week.

You see, finals are easy.  You have nowhere to go and nothing to do but study as hard as you possibly can all day, take the test, and move on to more studying.  You have one job: pass your tests.

Hell Week, though… it’s a doozy.  You have to balance all the end-of-semester tests, projects, and essays on top of classes and normal responsibilities.  It’s as if academia is pushing its acceleration pedal all the way down and its breaking the speed limit.  There’s no way you can keep up.  Days are spent rushing from one thing to the next and nights pass by in the library guzzling coffee trying to cope.

I’m currently sitting at the Circulation Desk.  I went to the library to print an essay, saw the librarians manning the desk, and asked if they needed someone to work.  Extra hours for Amelia!  Score!  Anyways… the library is an absolute beehive!  This is normal for right before finals, but we are still a week away.  Clearly, Hell Week is going to be painful for pretty much everyone.

What do I have in store for me this week?

Ten page essay due tomorrow.  Final portfolio due Wednesday.  Senior Banquet on Friday.  A plethora of Christmas parties, plus the Yule Ball (the best dance of the year) on Saturday.  Another ten page essay due next Monday.  And two final exams.

My goals this week: get the portfolio done, write the essay, try to stay sane.

It’s the final push.  Let’s do this.

Riding the stress wave of midterms

Midterms are quickly approaching.  And I find myself riding the wave of tension and stress that always rolls around this time of year.

Here’s what I’ve got standing between me and Fall Break (which is next Friday):

  • 3 page literary criticism response paper for Victorian Lit
  • Photo essay project for Visual Journalism
  • My final speech for Public Speaking, in which I will tirade about how awful Twilight is
  • Midterm for Visual Journalism
  • Midterm for Grammar and Language
  • 6-8 page paper for Victorian Literature
  • 15 minute presentation on some British marriage laws for Victorian Lit

Already this week I’ve written most of the response, begun searching articles for the presentation, and took a quiz for G&L (not mentioned on the list ’cause it’s already been taken).

Excuse me while I spend my night de-stressing over the most recent episode of Downton Abbey.  ‘Cause I’m going to be hitting the books hard this weekend and need to relax somehow!

Do you have anything stressing you out, readers?  What is your favorite way of relaxing?  Answer in comments!

Ufda.

Whew. To say my weekend was uneventful would be a severe understatement. I spent half of it in the car driving to the cities and back to Morris. I met up with various friends for coffee. I attended another concert (post to come!) and crashed on an oversized bean bag chair in a friend’s dorm. I went home for part of a day to hang out with my brothers (who I won’t see again till Thanksgiving). I also went thrifting as I travelled from place to place.
Whew. I’m feeling kind of sort of really exhausted, but the time has come to gear up for midterms. My next two weeks consist of two huge tests, a quiz, a project, a persuasive speech, an article response, a 6-8 page paper, and a ten minute presentation. As we say in Minnesota… Ufda!

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(In which my cat, Paco, takes full advantage of my fatigue.)