Monday, December 23, 2013

My 21st Birthday

My twenty-first birthday was yesterday, and was a surprisingly quiet one. Honestly at home I only have one or two friends to celebrate with these days. I'll definitely be going out with some people at school when I get back and Deon arrives in four days so he and I will do something.


I slept in till ten and then went downstairs and read my birthday cards. Presents included birthday money from Grandparents, Chanel red lipstick from my Mom, (it's SO FANCY), a gift card to Anthropologie from my Dad, and I will be getting a new peacoat at Macys when they go on sale. I have some other gifts from Deon and some of my friends coming as well.

My Chanel Lipstick. I feel like a celebrity. 
Then I went and sat around in my pjs for a bit until my parents and I went to lunch for Indian buffet. I LOVE Indian food and there's a great little joint in Yardley that I go to anytime I can when I visit.

I then sat around some more and watched Love Actually until about 6:30 when Katie picked me up. She and my other childhood friend Ashley took me to the Green Parrot Pub for my first legal drink. I ordered an Irish honey which has whiskey in it. It was okay, but to be honest I loved the food sampler we got a lot more. Their spinach dip and wings were AMAZING. :P Leave it to me to love the food more! The Green Parrot is a super cute place and I love it, but there was an Eagles game going on and it was extremely loud, so the three of us ended up walking down the street to Isaac Newton's where I downed four shots, and a beer. The first shot I hated it tasted like Robitussin, but after that I had a Baby Guinness shot which was basically Baileys and Kahlua, and it was incredible. I wanted to keep downing the stuff but I forced myself to stop and end the evening with a beer. Ashley and Katie treated me like a queen and gave me a birthday sash and a shot necklace haha. They paid for everything and made it a really fun experience.

My sash and necklaces. 
Baby Guinness shot. 
My favorite shot of the night hahaha. 
After we left there, Katie and I stopped at Taco Bell because apparently drinking gives me an insatiable appetite. The guy who gave us our food gave us free brownies on account of it being my birthday and the Eagles winning! Yet another reason for me to love Taco Bell. :)

I ended the evening finishing Love Actually and drifting off to sleep. I woke up perfectly fine with no headaches. I wish Deon and a lot of my school friends had been able to be with me, but I am so glad Katie and Ashley took the time to take me out and celebrate with me. I love when my birthday is, but since it's so close to Christmas it can be hard to coordinate plans.



Katie and I. 
Christmas is in two days and I am looking forward to attending my first midnight Christmas Eve/Day service in Yardley with my Mom, and a quiet Christmas dinner with them. Then in two days Deon shows up!! It's going to be a great time and you will be hearing about all of those experiences soon. I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and New Year!






Friday, December 13, 2013

Christmastide


After battling a stomach virus, having to postpone my jury until January, performing in six performances with Chorale, five finals, a piano exam, and one Christmas party, I am DONE with finals. To say it was hell is the understatement of the year being as sick as I was, but I passed my final piano exam so I no longer have to take any piano! I just tried to keep my chin up and so far my grades coming in are ok. I dominated my conducting final, history went well, and I passed my two psych classes which is all I cared about. So far I am waiting for my theory grade to see if I passed that. If I did that will be the best Christmas gift I could ask for. 

I'm still on campus because Chorale sings for winter commencement tomorrow, but then I will fly home Sunday for almost a whole month. Let the Christmas shopping and 21st birthday partying commence! 

Even with the five million things I had to do this semester, I got to have some fun. ;) 


I went to see my old choir Ladies of Lee perform at Rock City with Deon and Rachel (who also used to be in it and is in Chorale with me now). 





Dr. Songer and I.  I look up to this woman so much. 

2 of my favorite girls. Heather and Rachel. 



derp derp 



How cute are we? 



There's so many of them! They sounded great. 

Strolling through the Enchanted Lights Garden.



I wish I had more pictures from the Chorale White Elephant Party, but these two will have to suffice. 

Us in our ugly sweaters. I also have a jumper tucked in to look like a shirt on too haha. 

Deon got the best gift ever, but sadly it got stolen by someone else. :( 


I hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday!

Sing We Now to Sigma Alpha Iota.

Daughters of a great and singing nation,
Let your voices rise in dedication,
Music tells unspoken noble creeds;
Music beautifies the simplest deeds;
Sing we now to Sigma Alpha Iota.

Sing the greatness of the soul and spirit,
Sing the joy of peace and friendship's merit,
Music is a kind and truthful speech;
In a language out of mere word's reach,
Sing we now to Sigma Alpha Iota.

About two weeks ago, I got initiated as a sister of Sigma Alpha Iota - Lambda Eta, the women's musical fraternity at my college. It's called a fraternity instead of sorority because it's so old, that it was around before there were actually sororities! SAI is for any woman college student music major or not, who has a love of music and wants to further it's development particularly in music education and music therapy throughout America and the world. I'm so proud to be a part of such a great sisterhood!


Here are some pics of my initiation process. 
Bid Night when they came to sing to me.

Most of our chapter and the three new MITS in the front: Abbey, Lisa and myself. 

I love Lisa!

After getting initiated! Matching jerseys. :) 

My big sister Katie and I. 

Not only best friends, but sisters!

Sweet Abbey 

It took me forever to get our hand sign. 

Deon's pic of me in my jersey and new scarf. 
Our chapter wishes you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Little Happenings

Hey guys!

A week from today I will be home in Pennsylvania for a couple days at Thanksgiving! So excited to be with my friends and family. The day I get back we go straight into juries, Christmas concerts and finals...eek. So far this semester has a little better than the last...there's three classes my grades will not be stellar in..one I am worried about not passing (theory 3 again of course), so that's really discouraging but there is some hope left so PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE pray I pass Theory 3. I need to move on and I've worked so hard.

I thought I'd post some pics of the fun things I have been involved in these past few weeks. :)

I am loving getting to wear my vast collection of scarves all the time..
And have been trying to get in the habit of wearing red lipstick more often. I know the lighting makes it look pink, but it's actually a very bright cheery red. It really brightens up my face and just makes everything a little more fun!

My goodwill Pooh sweater because I mean come on..it's Pooh! 

Last weekend I went to Rembrandt's with my bestie Millie. I had an incredible tiramasu and cafe mocha. I LOVE REMBRANDT'S. If you are ever in Chattanooga make time to go. It's my most favorite coffee place ever. 



And finally..I saw this today and about died. I love music humor!






Tomorrow I get officially initiated into SAI which I am so excited about! Expect a post on that to come soon. I wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving! As I was posting this, I realized how many things I have to be thankful for! 

What are you thankful for?

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

5 Favorites.

I'm bored and avoiding piano practice so this is happening right now.

1.  Deon being the sneaky twit he is took creeper shots of me in class yesterday. We had a conducting recording day and I had to conduct Agnus Dei. He captioned it: "My little future conductor getting into the Agnus Dei."

It wasn't my best recording ever, but I still love every second of it.


2. I got the Iphone 5s upgrade this week, because my 4s screen basically shattered two weeks ago. It was the most ratchet thing you have ever seen I had it TAPED together. So ghetto. I'm loving how light the 5s is...and it's got slo mo video and a better camera as you can see. :) 

Showing off my galaxy tee that I love. 

3. Sigma Alpha Iota 

As some of you know, I am a MIT for SAI and I just took the national exam this week. My sisters helped so much and were very encouraging to me and the other two girls who were pledging. We all passed with flying colors and all that's left is our initiation ceremony on the 21st! Then next semester I become an active member and get to attend meetings, have positions, and help with all the events and wear my letters! 


4. THANKSGIVING!!!

I am extremely blessed that I get to go home for Thanksgiving this year as well as Christmas. I'm looking forward to having my mom's dinner, and catch up with friends and family even if it is only for a few days. 

5. And finally, I AM GOING TO AUSTRIA AND GERMANY FOR THE FIRST TIME THIS MAY!!!!! 

At Lee, you are required to do at least one cross cultural trip before you graduate which I think is awesome. I'm taking a May music history course and then for about a week and a half we will travel to Germany, Austria, and maybe even get one day in Paris! What makes this even more wonderful is my grandparents want to pay for the trip. I don't have to worry about a thing! They are so good to me. 


Also an extra tidbit of news: PA/NJ friends and fam get ready! Deon is coming to see me over New Years! My grandma wanted to pay for his ticket as a gift to me for Christmas, so he will come and stay for about a week! I can't wait to show him where I grew up and have him get to know my family better and meet Jenna and the ponies and oh, it's just going to be wonderful! 


Now if I can pass all my classes....your prayers are coveted! 

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Hair Dye, Stargazing, My First Chorale Concert, and Fall Break.


 Well it's been a while since I've updated! I just finished my Fall Break and am entering the second stretch of this fall semester. So much to do so little time.

One of the things I've been up to these past couple weeks is dying my hair. If you guys remember, I dyed it a darkish brown last winter, and I liked it, but I wanted it to have more to it. I ended up dying it an even darker brown with lots of red in it.

I. LOVE. IT. I have received so many compliments on it! Deon really loves it too I had him help me pick out the color. I might never go back to my old hair....at least not for a long time.

It's darker than this, but I like this pic of it. 


Two weekends ago, Deon, myself and a group of friends decided to spontaneously drive up to Chilhowee and stargaze. Freshman year I went up in the mountains at night with Deon and a lot of friends to have a bonfire and there was a waterfall too, we thought we remembered where the turnoff was but we were wrong! We drove for ages marveling at how clear the stars were! God's creation is so amazing and as we drove all I could do was silently thank him for it. We found a turnoff eventually and we spread out towels and blankets and sat talking about anything and everything and cuddling under the stars. There is nothing like the outdoors, good friends and good conversation! It will go down as one of my favorite evenings I've ever spent.

Terrible pic and we were dazed by the flash. :P 


Chorale had their first concert of the semester. I had the flu two days beforehand, but I was able to pull it together for the concert! I've been waiting for two years to be a member of Chorale and sing with them it is one of the most special experiences I have ever had. Our concert was based around some choral works, hymns and spirituals. It went wonderfully and when we sang an arrangement of For The Fruit of All Creation I couldn't help but tear up at being able to create music with so many wonderful people. I hope I can do this my whole life.
Deon and I at Steak and Shake afterwards. 

I've gotten a lot more vain since dying my hair haha. 


Jason photobombing Deon and I. 

Sass

This is probably one of my favorite pics ever. I love Rachel so much and aren't our Chorale dresses and jewelry classy? 

Millie, Rachel Sam and I.

On my fall break, I spent it with Deon on campus until the weekend when we drove to Nashville to see my best friend Delanie. I haven't gotten to see her since May (she goes to MTSU), so it was so wonderful to see her again. 


I'd like to ask for continued prayer over my test taking. I'm doing a little better, but no matter how much studying I do and how prepared I feel I'm still bombing a lot of exams although my homework is near perfect. My teachers are confused and so am I. I don't think I'm in danger of failing any classes, but it's still really upsetting so prayers are needed!

I'm hanging in there till Thanksgiving Break. I'm looking forward to going home and seeing my parents. :)

Until next time!

Monday, September 30, 2013

Food for Thought

What's Wrong With Guarding Your Heart?| Recovering Grace

This was something I struggled with greatly going up. This was a teaching that everyone around me advocated and for a while I bought it hook line and sinker...until I saw that it wrecked perfectly normal and healthy friendships between my girlfriends and guys in our church.  I came to college terrified every boy thought I was flirting with them and that they thought I was a whore.  I would even go so far as to say that some of these teachings affected how I approached my first relationship. We need to stop trying to micromanage and control every single aspect of our lives and everyone elses and instead love openly and without reserve in the way Jesus would want us to.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

The G4 Swartz Family: She's Here!

The G4 Swartz Family: She's Here!: Hayden Ruth Swartz was born September 21, 2013 at 6:50pm, weighed 7 pounds 6 ounces and measured 20 1/4 inches. It has been a little over a ...


One of my dearest best friends from home just had her first baby girl! Welcome to the world Hayden Ruth! You are such a gift!

I've known Heather since I was 8 years old and we have done so much growing up and maturing together. It's been amazing watching her fall in love with George, be there at her wedding, and then witnessing the entire pregnancy.

I love you Dearie! I can't wait to meet her!

Friday, September 20, 2013

Deon's 21st Birthday

Deon turned 21 on Tuesday. This is so crazy....we are actually in our twenties. We aren't teenagers anymore. I was thinking the other day how instead of saying "back home in Pennsylvania" I say "at my parent's house in Pennsylvania.." how time has flown!

Since his birthday was on a weekday, we spent the whole weekend partying it for him. And by partying I mean hiking, dinner at Texas Roadhouse, and then going to McKay's afterwards like the dorks we are.

My favorite view in the world is at Chilhowee. Imagine sitting on a stone wall listening to the Last of the Mohicans soundtrack....epic. 


We made another stop at Benton Falls since Sam had never seen it. 

Sam!

Goofing around. 

Sassy Deon 

Dinner at Texas Roadhouse. 

The whole gang: Millie, Anna, Michael Robb, Deon, Heather, Me, Sam, Rachel, Nick, Kelly and Andrea. 
On the way to our first hike!





On Tuesday, Nick made a sumptuous dinner for Deon and just Millie, Rachel and Sam came over for that. We talked and ate, and played some Mario Kart. I made Deon a pumpkin cheesecake and a dessert pizza too. 

I am so proud of my wonderful boyfriend and excited to see where God leads him. He's going to do great things! Happy Birthday Deon. <3