Wednesday, August 29, 2012


Hello everyone,

It seems that as a musician, my life has revolved around taking auditions these past couple of years.
I mean, for most of us, that seems to be the norm in trying to make a career in this field.
Auditions and I...  well, we have an odd relationship.  I don't particularly hate or love taking auditions,, I guess the strongest feeling I have for auditions is something akin to annoyance than anything else because I feel like I'm perpetually preparing for one audition or another.. and I'm not even trying to land a job yet!
For example, all last fall, I worked my butt off trying to get ready for the pre-screening auditions for graduate programs.  When that was done, I had to audition for summer programs that winter.  When that was done, I had another round of auditions for graduate programs in late winter/spring!  Then, we go to summer programs all summer where we have other auditions for orchestral seating and chamber group placements.  When we come back to school, it's "welcome back! let's audition for orchestra seating and chamber music placements!" and then we have to get ready to apply for summer festivals all over again!  It's never ending!!!!

Of course, this petty annoyance turns into a much more frightening psychological battle in the real world for many musicians.
For example, my friend Rachel posted this article for me to read a couple of months back, and well,, that's what's waiting for us as musicians in the real world, especially if we are trying to be orchestral musicians; so many of us, and so few job openings!
So far, I haven't had the kind of debilitating self doubt or audition-fright that's mentioned in the article, but I have also never auditioned for the Boston Symphony.  Perhaps when the stakes are that high, I may also develop such unfortunate side effects, but hopefully not.  It's a very serious problem many musicians have though, and I think one of the courses I am taking here at Rice is specifically designed to help us budding musicians to stunt the growth of such debilitating conditions. Of course, it's not necessarily termed in such a way, [How to Overcome Your Stage Fright! 101], but from looking at the syllabus and seeing how the class is being run, there's definitely that thread, just under the surface.  But hey, no complaints from me here!  I'll take all the tools and help I can get,,,  I'll need it once I am forcibly kicked out of the nest (of the academia). because apparently I have to graduate,, and enter the real world sooner than later..  =(  haha

So this week has been the "Hey! welcome back! let's audition!" week at Rice, and during my walks to and from school, I've just been musing about how different my life is now that I have chosen to do only music.
Being the nerd that I am, I have always loved school.  Though I never really thought about it all that much when I was in the midst of studying for subjects like math, history, or science, now that I'm removed from that atmosphere, I am realizing that there's something really comforting about studying subjects like these (at least up until the college level.  I can't speak for what they are like at the graduate level because I haven't experienced it) that is just not present in studying music.  

One of the biggest comforts for me in studying these subjects was the fact that I could predict what the outcome will be like based on the amount of effort I had put into preparing for them.  This is true for music, but only to a certain degree. There are just so many outside forces that can affect your performance that wouldn't even matter in an academic setting.  For example, during the most recent audition I took, it started pouring rain and flooding as I started my way to walk over to the audition building from the rehearsal building.  Thank you, Houston for being incredibly sunny with blue skies all day up until that moment... If you are ever auditioning in Houston, remember to bring an umbrella, no matter how ridiculously sunny it is outside.  So I played my audition soaking wet and shivering.  So this outside force (pretty petty, if you think about it... I just got rained on, no big deal, right?) that I had no control over ended up affecting my playing quite a bit.  
Now, let us take a look at my AP Calculus test day.  That morning, I woke up to my phone ringing in the most obnoxious way possible.  I rolled over, thinking 'uggg why is someone calling me this early?!', and picked up the phone.  It was my friend, Peter.  "Janny! where are you? We're about to start our exam!"  Thankfully, the test center was right next to my dorm, so I was able to roll out of bed and get there in a couple of minutes; just in time to sit down, fill out my information, and start.  Granted, at first my brain was still asleep and I couldn't even remember how to solve something ridiculously simple like 'what is the derivative of X^2', I was prepared for the test and was able to ace the test by the end of the allotted time. 
The second scenario had so many more awful things happening (no breakfast, brain still asleep, no snacks--I was most upset about this one haha--, freaking out about missing the test...) yet the outcome was such that I can laugh about it now. If I had inserted 'audition' for 'AP Calculus Test' in that scenario...  I would probably be too scarred by the outcome (no matter how prepared I was) to even be speaking about it right now.

Also, in studying the academics, there's a sense of 'ok, I learned that, now let's move on'.  For example, the alphabet.  We all learned it. We mastered it. We moved on, and have never looked back.  How absurd would it be if a college student said there's a class dedicated to learning the English alphabet at his university?  Well, that's exactly what happens with music  haha.  I learned the scales when I first began playing the violin; I am still working on them now, and I shall be working on them until the day I die. yup yup. 

But these absurdly difficult and volatile aspects of music does mean that every day will be 'interesting'... and no two days will be the same.  One day, I nail these uber difficult passages, and the next day, I can't even play the scales 50% in tune...  Once I sort of fix a crooked bow problem, I all of a sudden develop what my teacher Mr. Lin called a 'frog-phobia'...  when did this happen?!  sigh... it's never ending  haha.   Ok, so maybe it doesn't sound all that exciting when put in these terms... but there's something about the fact that I will always be striving to achieve something that I never will be able to achieve that is incredibly stimulating.  That plus the beauty and the power of music,,, how can you say no?  right? --let us just be idealists for a little while here  ;)

Anyway, if you do have a bad audition, or just have a moment of 'man... how am I going to make it as a musician?' which all of us have at one time or another, Amulet and I suggest treating yourself to some frozen yogurt.  =)
it worked for us!  haha

The only downside to this is that we may be spending way too much time here,,, instead of, say, practicing  haha  ;)

Yay ice cream!!!

Well, I hadn't meant for it to become such a long post!  haha.  I was just more or less writing out my train of thought that began on my walk home on this incredibly hot and humid day.
I hope you had a wonderful day, and thanks for reading!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Sunday Routine

Hello everyone!

Remember how I said I had soo much free time in this post?
I should have known that was not going to be the case...  haha
how did my schedule fill up so quickly?!

But I actually think I secretly enjoy being incredibly busy.
or perhaps it's not really a secret...
There's just something really exciting about having so much to do that you almost feel like you wont' make it.
But of course, you know you CAN do it,,  
well, you are 90% sure that you can manage the work load.
It's perhaps this presence of the other 10% that gets your blood pumping and pushes you to your max.
in the most un-adventurous sense?  haha

Though I seem to work best under pressure, I do enjoy a chill day now and again.
actually, I really love them.
just chilling,,, eating, reading, cooking, eating, exercising, listening to music, eating, watching tv shows...
and that's exactly the kind of a day Amulet and I had today!

You see, we kind of have a Sunday routine.
We wake up, eat breakfast, and then do some exercise videos.
Then, we [try to] practice [a lot].
sometimes we are successful in this endeavor,, sometimes we are not..  
today, we were not...  haha

After practicing awhile, we both came out of our [practice] rooms, looked at each other,
(it was clear neither of us wanted to practice any longer)
and proceeded to the kitchen to make some chocolate chip cookies!!!!

Oatmeal chocolate chip cookies!!!

We were planning on practicing while these were baking, but we soon realized that was not going to happen.
 it just smelled too heavenly in our house!!  
There's nothing like the smell of chocolate chip cookies wafting through the house 
to distract you from your practicing..
We basically ended up just chilling impatiently by the oven the whole time  haha

and in a couple of minutes, we were rewarded with warm, gooey, and incredibly delicious cookies!

After we had our 5-year-old moment with our cookies, we went back to work.
It should have been more productive, but at least for me, it wasn't.
Usually, thise sort of unproductivity can be fixed by refocusing,
(mind over matter!!)
but today, I didn't even feel like refocusing! 
(mind over,,, mind??)

These are the moments when I just have to say,
'ok, maybe I just need a chill day'
It's actually a lot more difficult to say this to yourself than you might think.
In fact, it's taken me a very long time for me to say this to myself,
but I think it's healthy.  =p
I'm pretty sure many of my musician friends are gasping in horror at this, but TRY it!
It's good for you  ;)
(just don't have a chill day every day   haha)

After deciding to have a chill day,
Amulet and I went back to the kitchen to concoct some Dakdoritang!!!

I love Dakdoritang!
We used my Grandma's recipe, and it tasted pretty great!
It's always very perplexing to me though that no matter how much I try, 
it never tastes as great as my Grandma's...
Is this another matter of practicing..?  haha

Our dinner!!!

With our dinner in hand, we enjoyed a couple episodes of Tudors.
Such a scandalous show!
I was so shocked when we first started watching them!  haha

I don't really watch TV, and the only show I've seen in its entirety so far is 
How I Met Your Mother (thank you Netflix and summer vacation).
However, if we continue this Sunday routine, 
Tudors may become the 2nd TV show I've seen in its entirety!

Oh, can I go off a tangent and point out our [fake] fireplace?
We are so proud of it, mainly because the top candles were SO difficult to find.
We found the candle holder at Goodwill, and there were many store visits and returns 
before we found the candles that would work actually work with it...
Perhaps because it's antique? 
I'm not sure,,  but boy am I glad we are no longer on the hunt for those candles!
But I think it turned out pretty beautifully, don't you think?
We love candles at the Blueberry household.  ;)

 Thanks for reading, and I hope you had a wonderful weekend as well!
Here's to the start of a productive week!  =D

Friday, August 24, 2012

Roommate bonding

Hello everyone!

When Amulet contacted me via Facebook last semester to be potential roommates, 
I could've never guessed just how much bonding adventures/times we would have together this year.
I mean, it's only been 2 weeks, and the fact that I already have so much to write about says something...

First, let us start with the air mattresses.
When we first got to our apartment, it was completely bare.
Being the amazing roomy she is, she blew up 2 air mattresses-one for herself and one for me- to sleep on the first night.  aww so sweet!  =)
In a couple of hours, however, both of them had deflated...
No matter what we did, we just couldn't seem to keep air in these air mattresses!
After a couple of mornings of waking up on the floor surrounded by the air mattress material,
we each got our own beds, and she bought a new air mattress for guest use.
That night, we blew that one up so my daddy could sleep on it for a night.
Much to our delight, this one kept its air for a long time!
Much to our chagrin, the mattress kept its air much too well...  
This time, no matter what we did, we just couldn't get the air mattress to deflate!
We left the cap unscrewed for a full day.  nothing.
We rolled around on it with the cap unscrewed.  nothing.
We got the automatic pump and set it on the deflate mode. nothing.
we were so perplexed.

Purely by chance, I happened to insert my pinky into the cap, and we heard a gush of air.
I couldn't figure out what was causing the mattress to deflate, but as long as I kept my finger there, it seemed to do the trick.
So, for the next 15 or so minutes, Amulet and I rolled around on the air mattress while my pinky was still stuck in the cap, trying to deflate this too-well-made air mattress.
and there was much laughter shared at the ridiculosity of the situation.
That has got to be the most eventful air mattress deflating I have ever experienced in my life...

Another major bonding moment happened when we decided to do our laundry together.
Usually doing laundry for me gets as exciting as how great the clothes smell,
but this time, we were so excited to do laundry because Amulet's dad had fixed our broken laundry machine for us the day before!
Little did we know that it would break down once again... 
this time, right before the spin cycle.
This meant that all of our clothes were still completely submerged in soapy water when the machine broke.

So...  we went fishing for our clothes in our own washer!
Amulet individually wrung them out, and I transferred them in a laundry basket to our neighbor's washer.
(soaking wet clothes are incredibly heavy, by the way)

That would have been bonding enough, but then we realized that we probably needed to get rid of all of the water just sitting in our washer...
Now, I'm sure there are ways to get the washer to drain by itself, but how are we to know that?

So we did the only thing we could think of;
we employed cups and trash cans to manually pump out ALL of that water out of our washer...

talk about roommate bonding...
 We made so many trips to the sink with the trash cans...
But!!  We did get a killer arm workout that day!  =)  haha

So, as you can see, our lives at the Fighting Blueberries Apt has been quite eventful.
What I love about living here with Amulet is that we always seem to be laughing;
we are both pretty 'chirpy' people.  haha
I mean, if we can laugh while we are manually pumping the water from the washer, I think it's safe to say that we laugh through almost anything  ;)

I have a feeling we're going to be having more of these bonding moments,
so stay tuned!  haha!
Thanks for reading, and happy weekend!!!!!!!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

My New [Practice] Room!

Hello everyone!

This was the first time I have had to furnish an apartment from scratch,
and let me tell you, furnishing a home is no small task!
I just never realized how many things were required to make an apartment functional,
and to make it feel 'homey' required that many more things...

Amulet and I have been making so many Goodwill and Target runs,
and I think our apartment is really beginning to feel like home.
The living room and the little side room (maybe it'll become a library..?) still needs a lot of work,
but our rooms are all done!  

So here's the first look at my room!
It also doubles as my practice room because I like the idea of being able to lay down on my bed when I get tired of practicing...  
I can foresee this becoming a very dangerous habit (naps?), and I may stop practicing in my room in near future, but for now, I am loving it!  haha

So, welcome to my [practice] room!!
Here is the infamous, dangerously comfortable, bed.
And Audrey. 
She was a Goodwill find!  =)   
I discovered her discarded among dozens of tacky flowers at the store, and knew she was coming home with me right there and then.
Definitely a love at first sight moment  ;)
She's in great company among my Interlochen bear, some lovely candles, some Hemingway, 
and the book, Elegant Universe.  
If you are interested in metaphysics, it's definitely a very interesting read!

This corner is my 'study' corner.

Dad and I found this little corner desk at another Goodwill store along with the chair.
The lights are a gift from my very first roommate ever, Alina, and I've carried it around everywhere.
It makes me smile every time I see it.   
Such fond memories of Interlochen with that lady  =)
There are so many meaningful things on this desk that remind me of everywhere I've been.
Love this corner!

Well, so my favorite color used to be blue.
I say 'used' to be because I'm not sure it'll remain my favorite color for very long...
I mean, look at this room.

So. much. blue.
Blue walls, blue curtains...
This presents so many problems because when I go shop for things, the default color I go for is blue.
However, with my room being what it is, I can no longer acquire anything else that is blue!
(my car was initially going to be blue, but thankfully, that did not happen. whew!)
I need a new favorite color!!
any suggestions?  haha

Anyway, this corner has the dresser my Daddy and I put together.
That was definitely an adventure.
Neither of us are very used to using our hands to build things, and we were not prepared for how complicated a dresser building turned out to be.
I mean, the manual was as think as a book!  
so many steps...
However, after like 5 hours, and one redo (we put a part of it together backwards...)
I love this dresser!   =)
This corner also has the star I got in Seattle--home sweet home!
and other memorabilia from different chapters of my life thus far.

Well, that's my [practice] room!

see?  my violin and my bear spending some quality time together.

As we start getting different parts of our house decorated, I'll post more pictures  =)
Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, August 20, 2012

First Day of School!

Hello everyone!

Today was the first day of school at Rice, and the inhabitants of the 'Fighting Blueberries' apt 
were SO excited for school to start!!
(the reason we are the Fighting Blueberries apt is because both Amulet and I attended Interlochen!)

It worked out really wonderfully because Amulet and I are both in the first class together,
the Early Music History, so we got to get ready, practice a bit at home, then leave for school together!
It's a bit of a blessing, really, because I am always running late to things,
but because Amulet was there, we arrived at school way before the classroom even opened!  ;)

And because we left so early, we even had time to document our excitement as we walked to school! 
I swear, we probably looked like children on their first day of kindergarten.  haha 

Here is Amulet!  So ready for this history class!

"Amulet, how do you feel about the first day of school??"

yay school!

Later on in the day, my friend Christiano and I roamed the campus together.
We met 3 summers ago at Roundtop Music Festival, and it is so great to be reunited here!!

more excitement...  I think this was at the fact that school was over for the day!  haha

We only had one class today (I think I'm going to like this whole graduate student schedule-ness!), 
so we leisurely took care of some paperwork at the Registrar's, 
ran into Amulet at the Shepherd School of Music,
then all three of us walked (skipped) back to the Fighting Blueberries Apt for some lunch.

skipping to....
our apartment!!!!

I was a little bit shocked at first by how empty my schedule looked compared to how it has looked for the past...  well, like 16 years.
I mean, I'm only in 2 'academic' courses!
That has happened... never!
I went through a phase of "ohmygosh... where are my history courses?" because I am a big history nerd,
and have always had 1 or 2 history classes during my undergraduate degree.
 However, that lasted for a surprisingly short while,
and after that, I thoroughly enjoyed having time to practice alllllll day.  =D

This luxury, however, will be gone as soon as the Rice orchestra starts rehearsing,,,
Rice orchestra meets 3 times a week for 2 1/2 hours at a time!
That's a lot more orchestra than I have ever experienced,
but I am SO excited to be a part of such an incredible ensemble!

Well, off I go to practice some more  =)
I hope you had a wonderful Monday!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Seattle Memories [part 2]

Hello everyone,

Welcome to Part 2 of Seattle adventures!  =)
For the majority of this section, my Dad's friend's daughter Jungwoon, and her friend Hyesu joined us!
They are both from Korea, but are studying abroad at Arizona State and NYU respectively.
Apparently Jungwoon and I hung out together a lot when we were toddlers, but unfortunately, toddler memories failed both of us, and neither of us remember these incidents  haha!
However, it was fun spending a lot of time together and 'reconnecting' in about 2 decades!

Anyway, I believe this is #7 now from this post?
7.  Visit Ivar's Fish Bar
This is a Seattle classic, and the fish here is so fresh!
and the ordering system is pretty fun as well, especially if you go during their busy hours;
they yell at you, and you yell back at them with what you want  ;)
After you get your food (their chowder is a must try), you can sit outside by the lake and feed the seagulls french fries!  
Don't worry, it may not be the healthiest for them, but the Seattle seagulls have probably evolved differently in order to allow them to survive on french fries;
they just flock to Ivar's for their meal!

8.  Gas Works Park
If you feel the need to burn off the fish and chips that you consumed at Ivar's, 
Gas Works Park is the perfect place to do so!
It used to be an oil refinery, I believe, but instead of tearing everything down, 
they decided to keep everything and make it into a park!
I think it has a post-apocalypse-esq feeling  ;)
It's fun strolling around among the 'ruins' and enjoying the Seattle skyline.
When we visited, there was also this drum circle happening!  pretty awesome!

9.  Chittenden Locks
Seattle is famous for its salmon, and if you are interested in seeing large salmon climbing up the salmon ladder, this is the place to go.
Unfortunately, we missed the closing time by a minute (literally) but we still got to see some salmon passing by through the door!

10.  The Underground Tour
If you are a history nerd like me (and even if you aren't), the Seattle Underground Tour is worth going on at least once.  
I've been on it 4 times now, and I think that is a bit excessive, but the tour guides are really entertaining!
You get to hear pretty hilarious stories about the beginning of this wonderful city called Seattle, which apparently began among such noble acts like much drinking, much prostitution, and much corruption.
Perhaps that's why everyone in Seattle is so chill?
I love this city  ;)  
Also, you'll hear why it is that the 'streets' that we walk on in Seattle connect to not the 1st floor of the buildings you see, but the 2nd, 3rd, or even 4th floors of the buildings!!

Also, if you go into the gift shop, they have some really fun knick knacks to browse through.
For example, we found this book, The Art of Kissing: Tips and Techniques from the 1930s.

Approved Methods of Kissing, eh??  ;)
apparently, the manner in which the kiss is performed is vitally important.
I figured I shouldn't spoil it for the book, but if you feel like knowing how to kiss 1930s style,
check this book out!  hahaha
The 4 of us had a lot of fun giggling over it.  
I mean, what else would you expect?

11.  Go eat at Serious Pie
the pizza here?  so. good!
and you can see them firing it up in the fire oven as you walk in!
what I thought was really cool was that they seat you wherever there's room on this long table, 
so you actually end up sitting next to random strangers!
Perhaps you wouldn't want that if you were on a first date or something,
but we had fun getting to meet people sitting around us  =)

12.  Bottega Italiana.
If there's one thing I can never say 'no' to, it would be any frozen dessert.
Ice cream, sorbet, sherbet, shaved ice, gelato...  
you name it, and I will have it any time of the day, any time of the year.
Bottega Italiana is located next to the Pike Place Market, and their gelato is SO good!!
Strawberry Basil was my favorite  ;)

13.  The Cinebarre
This is only for the 21 and older crowd, since it is a mix between a movie theater and a bar.
But it's so cool because it has a row of chairs and then a row of tables, 
so you can eat and drink as you watch any movie of your choosing.
The crowd is fun too since everyone is over 21, and mostly around the same age, 
it's never crowded, and the atmosphere is a little more casual;
I mean, everyone is eating and laughing along with the movie,
so we never have to worry about being too quiet.

Linda and I visited it to watch the new Batman movie (which was AMAZING), 
and when Garrett, a childhood friend of ours from Aurora, NE, came to visit, 
we went again to watch Hope Springs.
Talk about the most awkward hilarity ever.  =)

Last, but not least,,
14.  Shopping!!!!!
Linda and I visited the Seattle Outlet Mall twice on this trip,
and the second time just so that we can go get these lovelies.
We had seen them the previous trip, but decided against buying them.
However, we just could not get them out of our heads!
The golden beauty was my birthday present from Linda!
Thanks friend!!  You the best!!  ;)

It was so good to see Linda and hang out together in Seattle.
It was a break both of us needed quite desperately,
and I really appreciated the chance to spend some quality time with her before we left for our respective schools for the year.
Linda is attending Columbia University it NYC, and I am SO proud of her!  =D
She's going to be a chemical engineer!!  woot woot!!
Though I am incredibly happy for her,
I can't help but being a bit sad that she'll be so so far away...
NYC to Houston is 1627 miles!!
Ah well, I guess I'll just have to go visit NYC   =p  
no complaints from me there!  haha

Well, thanks for reading about our Seattle adventures!
It is a truly lovely city, and I do hope that you will get to visit and experience it sometime.
Talk to you soon!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Seattle Memories

Hello everyone,

Today was day 3 of orientation at Rice, and I can really feel the excitement building up!
But before I launch into everything new that is happening, I just wanted to take a minute and reminisce about Seattle a lil bit  ;)  Especially because Linda and I did so many fun things that I never got to share with all of you!
If you are ever in Seattle, I recommend doing alll of these things!!  =D

1.  Visit the Deception Pass
It is located about an hour and a half north of Seattle, and though it is a little far, 
we unanimously agreed that it was completely worth it when we got there.
I mean, look at these views!
It is one of the most beautiful sights I have seen.

 There are also many opportunities to frolic by the beach or during the hike.  
A couple of the things we enjoyed were climbing boulders and throwing rocks when some sign tells you to not do so.  haha  (don't worry, we didn't actually throw them)

The best part?   
the summit.
you can sit on a ledge and just chill thousands of feet above the ocean and the trees.
The view is really breathtaking.

2.  Golden Gardens Park
If it is above 80 degrees, and you are in Seattle, that means you have GOT to go to the beach.
Why? because you'll only get that temperature for a couple of days out of the year.
tanning season in Seattle is very short, so when it comes, you have to take advantage of it  ;)

but beware,,, the water is still freezing!!

3. Visit Queen Anne.
Queen Anne is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Seattle, and it is a darling little place.
I mean, it has things like this ice cream bike!  So cute!

also, it has one of my favorite coffee shops.  

mostly because of this wall,, boooookkksss!!!
Though I mean, I think the coffee is pretty good there as well. I just am not an expert coffee person, so I can't say if it's really top notch or not.

There's also this really awesome sandwich shop called Homegrown.
It's definitely a must-try  =)

4.  Cook at home using incredibly fresh ingredients from various farmer's markets.
Well, this is pretty self explanatory  ;)

5.  Visit Molly Moor's.
Best. Ice cream. Ever.
so. good.
Especially after a night of dancing at a near by swing club  ;)

6.  Visit Color Me Mine.
It is a paint-yourself pottery studio in Mill Creek, WA.  
It's about half an hour north of Seattle, and there are others that are closer. 
We chose this one though because they said they could fire our mugs and have them ready to go in 2 days!
That was crucial since we were flying out in 3 days  haha
It was so much fun, and both Linda and I highly recommend the place  ;)

oh wow.. this is getting to be rather long   haha!
So I will continue with more of our adventures in a different post soon.
Stay tuned for Seattle Memories Part 2!!
Happy Friday!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Hello Houston!!

Hello everyone,

I am sorry for such a long absence!  (it's almost been a week!!)
For the past couple of days of Linda's stay in Seattle, we were too busy just hanging out and trying to enjoy our time there to the fullest (especially when our friend Garrett joined us!), 
and then last friday, Dad and I flew down to Houston and we've been working nonstop to furnish my apartment down here. (who would have thought so much stuff was needed to furnish a home!)
It's been a grueling process, but our apartment is finally coming together, 
and I think I'm really going to love living here with my roomy Amulet  =)  
I'll post the pictures of our home soon.

In the meantime, Dad and I took a break from trying to get everything ready before his departure today and took a stroll through the beautiful Rice campus today.

Shepherd School of Music!

right behind the music school

Taking a break in the shade  =)

well, hello Mr. Rice!


Orientation starts tomorrow, and I am still marveling at the fact that I can feel this unbelievable excitement and this feeling of disbelief at the same time.
Is this really happening? Am I really starting my Master's degree at Rice? Is this real??
But I am definitely SO ready to start this fresh new chapter in my life!  =)

Talk to you soon with more updates!