the predicament of where to study

study, The U, u of u, university of utah, Utah

Two 'bros' are hugging it out right next to me. It's lasting a long time and I find it to be kinda weird. Not that they're hugging, I'm a hugger too. But they are kinda rocking back and forth and laughing. Weird.

I used to park my pants in the library on the food level. There are nooks there with tables and padded benches. Lots of students go there to study and pass time between classes. I like it because it's cozy and you can eat there but it's still quiet.

Unlike the Union building where people are, what I would call, excessively loud. It's pretty obvious I don't like freshmen. Or overly loud people.

I've recently moved from the library to the computer lab in the Union. Mostly because I've needed to make phone calls during my down time and I don't feel comfortable doing that in the library. So the computer lab has been great. There are group project meet ups happening and people studying together. And it's also food-approved.

And even though it's more quiet down here and there is more studying going on that upstairs, I'd really rather be in a vacuum where it's quiet and food and cell phone friendly. Except that if it's too quiet I can't concentrate.

With only a couple weeks of school left, it's not something I'm spending a lot of time worrying about. In a couple weeks I'll be free of having to think about where I'm gonna spend my in-between class time. And since I only have one class every day during the summer, I won't have to worry about it then either. It's gonna be good.

what do you eat instead?

meal replacement, protein bars, student life, The U, university of utah, What I'm...

Since starting school, when 2pm comes around I'm hungry enough to consider eating my foot. And since there are so many meal replacement/protien bars on the market these days, I decided to try them and find the best one for me.


I started with Pro Bar.  It's made in Park City and, honestly, that weighed heavily on my choosing that one to start. And it's not bad! Fairly dense and hearty, it filled me up and held me over until I could grab something to eat after classes were over.  


Y'know how some meal replacement bars have a kind of… dirty flavor. Like it's made of protein powder and gross dates blended up to hold the mass together? This kinda has that. But with the many flavors available (Cran-Lemon Twister being my favorite) it's not nearly as bad as say, a Power Bar. Because those things are yicky.


Next was the LaraBar. Which I did not like.  It was pretty lemon-y. And for way fewer calories but waaay more saturated fat and less protein… not what I was looking for.


Third was the Odwalla Berries GoMega.  It was pretty good, like one of those breakfast ceral bars. With less calories, fat, and sugars, it would be a good option. But it just didn't hold me over. 


I mentioned my little experiment to Lauren, she suggested I try the Special K protein meal bar. That was the one she liked. I wondered if it really could be that simple.


And you know what? It totally is that simple.  The fewest calories, double the fat, half the carbs, half the sugar, more protein… and it keeps me from gnawing on my foot.

I'll be sticking to the simple stuff from now on. 

(But if there ever is a time when I need something organic, vegan and non-gmo, I know where to go.)

progress in week 2

back to school, college, school, The U, university of utah

It's the end of week 2 and it's been a good week.  I find the juggle of school, work and personal life to be easier and less stressful.  This is good news.

Also good news? Readings for my classes are online.  Which means no purchased textbook.  During the past 2 weeks it has meant printed out articles and stacks of paper to read.  Except for the article that was 30 pages long, I didn't print that one out. Since I read and study better in a chair other than my desk chair, reading the electronic copies has been difficult. Until now…

In other good news… I got an ipad this week.  Which I'm tremendously excited about.  I can now read these required articles and texts online.  The school offers e-textbooks too, so starting next semester, no more lugging around textbooks in my backpack. Seriously good news.

With the purchase of a small keyboard to companion with my ipad, I'm feeling completely set up. I toyed with the idea for a long time with getting a laptop. But since I have a computer at home, I didn't want to have two computers and two harddrives.  Since starting school, I've seen the ipad/keyboard set up a few times and realized it was the perfect set up for what I needed.  Not much storage space, but with the ability to write a paper, read online text and easy peasy to use… it's wonderful!

Weather was quite warm, as far as winter goes. With temps into the mid-50s in the afternoon, I haven't needed all the layers and warm accessories I needed last week.  The train commute and walking has been interesting in the drizzling rain, but I'm adaptable and I did just fine. 🙂 It's been nice to adjust to the rhythm of school and work without being snowed on and having to tromp through the slush. Though I'm sure that will happen soon enough.

week one down

life, new semester, school, school started, spring semester, The U, the university of utah, university, university of utah, Utah, utah red, utes

It's the end of the first week of school. 

The U logo

I told my friend school was fun.  He said I must be doing it wrong because school isn't supposed to be fun. I beg to differ.

Either way, the start of my first semester has been filled with anticipation and butterflies. Now that I've been to all my classes twice, here is a partial list of the (non-scholarly) things I've learned:

  • Twitter is mightly helpful for getting up to the minute updates from UTA for the train.
  • The thing I miss most from work during the day is being able to listen to ESPN radio pretty much non stop.
  • All college girls have the same fashion basics. Me included.
  • I'm testing meal replacement bars and they're not so bad.
  • But I'm still starving when 2pm rolls around.
  • I feel inspired and motivated.
  • I'm continuing to feel tired while my body adjusts to my new “higher” activity level. No freshman 15 for this girl. Which is doubly good since I'm technically a junior.
  • I have enough reading to do that I'm no longer bored during my break in classes.
  • Am I the oldest student in my classes? Almost 🙂

This going back to school still has me feeling a bit out of sorts. But a couple more weeks in and I'll be adjusted and moving right along. I've been able to feel settled and familiar with my route to classes and the train schedule. I'm hoping within the next couple weeks to find the activities and events I need to get involved in so I can get the experience and exposure I need. 

So much has happened already, but still so much more to come!


the last two hours

birthday, christmas, halloween, holidays, life, thanksgiving, The U, university of utah

The official announcement is here: I'm going back to school.


Not like the times I've gone back to school before.  This time is majorly different.  I'll be attenting the University of Utah full time. Full time school.  It's been… 8 years since I attended school carrying a full load of credits. 

The last two hours have been spent pouring over class schedules and course descriptions and the general catalog doing what I do best: planning. Picking classes, looking forward to the following semester to plan prerequisites and course flow, adding in general requirements and fixing up my schedule. All while keeping in mind future work hours, walking time between buildings, and allowing time to eat. And hoping I won't live too far from campus and that there will be plenty of social outings and time to relieve the stress.  And read my textbooks. 

I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed at the moment. January looms closer. Closer to the time I move apartments (again) and start this new chapter. Though it feels more like a new book in the series, not just another chapter. This is huge.

But I remember that in the next 3 short months before school starts, there are plenty of other things to look forward to. And I certainly don't want to skip over them.

It's the time of year I turn one year older. I think I've finally reached the age where I can say I'm almost 30. Is that jumping ahead a little bit? Probably. But it makes me smile. And it helps me remember to enjoy these moments right now because pretty soon, they'll be 10 years ago.

And quickly after I blow out the candles comes Halloween. I'm looking forward to this, if only for the reason that I get to dress up, dance, spend time with good friends, and blow off some steam. It's been stressful these last weeks and I need to relax. Halloween will be awesome.

Thanksgiving is coming up. It's my favorite holiday. And this year is gonna be great, if only because I want it to be.

Then comes Christmas. Enjoying good food with family is always a good time. Mixing in a bit of making the other person smile and the day is always memorable. 

So while I look forward to the changes the new year will bring, I have to remind myself to enjoy right now. Too soon will right now be yesterday, and I'd like to enjoy right now instead of looking back at yesterday wishing I'd spent it happy instead of wasting it being stressed.