Sunday, June 29, 2014

Aperçu


Well, this has been one heck of a week. 6 college tours, in 4 days. I think that is pretty impressive. And exhausting… My mom, brother, and I drove through 4 states, ate all the fried food we could, and managed  to drink our weight in sweet tea. It was quite successful. As my college touring for this week began to unwind, I started to think about all the campuses and what they had to offer. So I thought the best way to share my thoughts with you is to rank them, and the reason for my ranking. 

Wake is definitely my least favorite school. Like I mentioned in a previous post, the admissions counselor constantly described pieces of the campus as "quirky." I'm all for people have some quirks, but I'm not a fan of "quirky sports", "quirky academics", or "quirky social lives." It just totally did not seem like the place for me. 

Maybe it was because I didn't actually tour the campus, but nothing seemed to really wow me. Yes, it was a really nice college campus, but other schools really made a stronger impression on me. 

Nothing about Clemson is truly bad, I like the campus. It checks off basically everything I want in a college campus. My least favorite part of the campus is the dorm rooms. They are quite small. 

Elon has a very, very lovely campus. The communications department is incredible. Since I want to study under the Communications department, it was a huge plus for me to see. I gave Elon my 3rd place spot not because I didn't like the school, but because other campuses impressed me more. 

Coming in second place, UGA! UGA has a true authentic college campus. It seems like the campus you see in the movies, classic and southern. The only down side is the size of the campus. Yes, I know most big state universities are large, but I don't want to have to drive to class every day. 

My number one college from this trip is Furman University! The campus is truly GORGEOUS, and the school is very strong in academics. The surrounding town, Greenville, is absolutely perfect and is such a cool place to hang out. It is probably the best private campus for me. It has everything I want and more. 

Well, that's my college trip in a nutshell! If you have any questions about any of the campuses I visited, comment below!

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Oh Charleston, I Love You











My mom, brother, and I spent our last day of our road trip in the lovely city of Charleston, South Carolina.  Filled with historic elements from the Civil War and high-end shopping, Charleston provides the perfect destination stop for everyone. It is also right by the beach!

One of my favorite parts about visiting Charleston was the food. There are barely any chain restaurants, so you are kind of forced to eat at a local favorite. We ate at Hyman's Seafood. Let me tell you, their hush puppies were to die for. They were the perfect bite of sweet and savory. We also indulged in some delicious fried green tomatoes. (If you haven't tried one, I highly recommend it!) And all of that glorious fried food was just the appetizers! For our main courses, we satisfied ourselves in fried shrimp and fish. It was so yummy (and fried…)! 

I'm a history buff, so it was really neat for me to see where the Civil War began and to see such a historic city. It was a great addition to our college road trip through the South. If you have never been to Charleston, I hope that you will make an effort to stop by and enjoy this iconic city!

Shirt: Cynthia Rowley (Marshalls find)//Skirt: Express(similar)//Shoes: Jack Rogers//Purse: Kate Spade(similar)//Hat: Target

Thursday, June 26, 2014

College #5: Elon University







Finally! The last day of college tours!!! My mom, brother and I are so exhausted from driving from one campus to the other, walking around in the heat. So college #5 was Elon University. The overall look of it was very similar to Furman. Everything has the same classic brick buildings that I love so much. Also, the dorms were extremely nice. They didn't have that typical cinder block wall, and they came with a microwave and fridge. (Bonus!)

What most impressed me was the Communications department. It is VERY impressive. They have several college Emmy's and other prestigious awards from student directed projects. Since I plan on studying within Communications, it was a huge plus for me to see how successful the department is. Even Brian Williams sent his son to Elon to study communications!

Here are some facts about Elon:
Location: Elon, North Carolina
Undergrad Students: 5,225
Colors: Maroon and Gold
Mascot: Phoenix

After our spot at Elon, we rushed over to Winston-Salem for our later tour at Wake Forest University. In between the two tours, we of course had to eat lunch and watch USA vs Germany in the World Cup. To be completely honest, I couldn't care less about soccer and the World Cup, but if America wins something, I'm all in. (they didn't sadly)

For our final tour (#6), we journeyed on over to Wake Forest. The Welcome Center is impossible to find. We drove around in circle FOREVER before we could find it. We even called the center itself, and they gave us the wrong place to go! 

So we pulled up right on time to go into the center and walked in as an admissions counselor began to talk about the school. Man, she rambled on. She seemed to talk for hours about her experiences and what not. That was the beginning of my turn off from the school. Secondly, she said the word "quirky" to describe basically everything. I was not a fan of that. Lastly, everything seemed too pretentious. So, we didn't even go on the tour. I saw no point in walking around a campus with no desire to go to the school. 

Have you toured either Elon or Wake? Let me know your thoughts!


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

College #4: Furman University










College #4! Today, we toured the beautiful campus of Furman University. Several people I know attend Furman, so I was excited to see what all the hype was about. Driving up to the campus, one may think it is a country club. I mean the school has a golf course and everything. Even though parts of it look like a country club, the whole campus definitely has that "college" feel. 
One thing I really like about Furman is that all students live on campus. I know some would like to live off campus in their later years, but I think staying on campus really ensures one is fully involved. And the dorms are not bad at all! Yes, they have communal bathrooms for Freshman and Sophomores, but once you hit your Junior year, you start living in apartment style rooms. 
Another thing I really appreciate is that cars can't actually drive near any of the academic buildings; they can only drive really on the outer parts of campus. One thing I hate about some of the large public schools is the amount of traffic that consumes the campus. I would rather hear birds chirping and students bustling to their next class than the honking of one's horn. 
The town of Greenville is pretty darn amazing. It is the perfect little city. It has tons of small boutiques and delicious sounding restaurants. As we walked down the street, we wanted to try everything! One of the really neat things about Greenville is the waterfall area with a suspended bridge. It is such a gorgeous little park! Another bonus is the campus has a direct trail to the park. 
Overall, I really loved Furman. On top of being a great academic school, it seems the school and town surrounded offers a lot for the students. 

Here's some facts about Furman: 
Location: Greenville, South Carolina
Undergrad Students: 2,753
Colors: Purple and White
Mascot: Paladin (it is like a knight)

Shirt: Kenar(Marshalls find)//Shorts: Vineyard Vines(similar)//Shoes: Jack Rogers//Bag: Dooney and Bourke

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

College #3: Clemson University








And the tours continue! After our lovely tour at UGA, we had about a one hour drive to Clemson University. To clear things up first. Everybody says Clemson and Auburn are very very similar. They are not at all. Auburn has a much more comfortable, quaint feel. Everything seems a lot closer together at Auburn, than at Clemson. 

One thing I did appreciate about the Clemson tour is that it was all on foot unlike the University of Georgia. The tour guide took us through the heart of campus and around to the most important parts of the campus. All of the buildings have the nice red brick, but the architecture at Clemson didn't have the same timeless feel. Speaking of buildings, if you are interested in Greek life, you may want to know that they do not have sorority houses, they have resident halls (like Auburn). But don't get too discouraged! Because there are no houses, there are not the ridiculous fees like other large universities. 

Overall, Clemson gave a good impression, but I found UGA a better option. UGA gave that timeless feel, and that good ole SEC fever!

Here's Some Facts About Clemson:
Location: Clemson, South Carolina
Undergrad Students: 16,931
Colors: Purple and Orange
Mascot: Tiger

Shirt: Cynthia Rowley(Marshalls find)//Shorts: Telluride(Marshalls find)//Shoes: Sperry Topsider//Bag:Dooney and Bourke//Hat: Vineyard Vines


College #2: University of Georgia


Doesn't Cole look so excited to tour schools? 




Off to UGA! Our morning started with an 8:45 tour (early, I know) at University of Georgia. Before I dive into the actual tour I just have to say, people are so nice in the true south. Yes, I'm from Florida, but it really isn't too southern. Here, in Georgia, everyone is glad to help you out or just carry on small talk. My brother (who goes to school in Philly) says constantly how friendly southerns are. For example, we lost our parking pass which would cause us pay an extra $10, but the parking lady gave us a break and didn't make us pay the extra money. So sweet!!

Anyway, our tour at UGA. I was really impressed with the campus. You can see from the few pictures I uploaded that the buildings have that southern, classic look I talked about in my Mercer post, but they are on a completely grander scale. The buildings are MASSIVE. Granted, UGA is one of the larger schools in Georgia, but I never expected them to be that large. 

One of my favorite parts of the university is their pride in the Dawg spirit. You can tell everybody who goes to UGA loves it and is proud of their decision. All of the students respect traditions that have been passed down for decades and are just as eager to participate in them. They are also big into their UGA football. I mean look at that stadium!! It's one of the largest stadiums in the country, having 92,746 seats. If they need that many seats it is safe to say a LOT of people love the Dawgs. 

The only disappointing part of the tour was the fact that you had to ride a bus on most of it. I think that just takes away from the tour experience, especially because you aren't able to get a great view of "the building on your left." I know when I toured the University of Alabama the whole tour was on a bus, and I HATED it. I felt like I saw nothing. And I know at a big campus it is hard for them to try to cover the campus in a 1-2 hour tour, but I feel like they could do it. 

Overall, I was greatly impressed with my visit to UGA. I'm also excited that their public relations department in #4 in the country! (That's what I want to major in) But, if you are curious about the city around the college, Athens, I am pleased to tell you it is fabulous! It is full of small shops and delicious little restaurants that are so unique and embody the Athens spirit. 

Here's some facts about UGA:
Location: Athens, Georgia
Undergrad Students: 26,278
Colors: Red and Black 
Mascot: Uga the Bulldog 

Shirt: Cynthia Rowley(Marshalls find)//Shorts: Telluride(Marshalls find)//Shoes: Sperry Topsider//Bag: Dooney and Bourke//Sweater: J. Crew Factory//Hat: Vineyard Vines

Visited University of Georgia? Let me know your thoughts!!

Monday, June 23, 2014

College #1: Mercer University






Isn't the brace cute? 



Why hello Mr. Mercer!

Toby the Bear


Well, my college road trip has begun! After a dreadful 6 hour car ride to Macon, Georgia, and one yummy stop at Cracker Barrel (BISCUITS), my mom, brother and I finally arrived at Mercer University. I, honestly, don't know what I was expecting, but I was pleasantly surprised when we pulled up to the Georgia campus. Sadly, we weren't able to take a campus tour (sigh). It is orientation week at Mercer, so no tours were offered.

We opted to walk around ourselves, after a quick stop at the Admissions Office. (Definitely drop by the Admissions Office when you go to a campus; they may give you free stuff!). The campus is gorgeous! I'm a HUGE fan of the classic, southern, brick buildings with manicured lawns. I, also, loved the University Center which housed a state of the art workout center, a food court, (it included a Chick-fil-a!) and the basketball stadium. It is pretty amazing that the Mercer Men's Basketball team beat Duke this past year. Go Bears!

Here's some facts about Mercer:
-Locations: Macon/Atlanta/Savannah
-Undergrad Students: approximately 4,571
-Colors: Orange and Black
-Mascot: Toby the Bear

Shirt: Vineyard Vines//Shorts: Lilly Pulitzer//Shoes: Jack Rogers//Purse: Dooney and Bourke
Visited Mercer? Let me know your thoughts!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Aperçu

This past week, I had the pleasure of leading my school's Middle School Cheerleading Camp. I didn't realize until the previous weekend that planning takes a lot of energy. Before the camp even started I was exhausted. What absolutely took so much energy from me? Well, I had to learn sidelines (in the cheerleader world that is a shorter cheer), a cheer (that's what a longer cheer is called), and a band dance. Sure, that doesn't sound that bad, but I made up the two cheers which means doing them over and over again until I figure out what are the best motions.(They were pretty great, I might add)
The little girls were absolutely precious! All of them seemed so excited to become a cheerleader and learn everything! Here's my little group of adorable MS girls!

Those are the paper plate awards I made for them! 

One of my favorite finds of this week was this Jane Austen: Seven Novels. Isn't it beautiful? I am a HUGE Jane Austen fan. So when I spotted this gorgeous bound book, I had to have it. This collection includes Pride and Prejudice(My personal favorite), Sense and Sensibility, Persuasion(My close second favorite), Emma, Northanger Abby, Mansfield Park, and Lady Susan


Speaking of Jane Austen, my mom and I stumbled on Austenland, a Jane Austen enthusiast movie. It tells the story of Jane Hayes (played by Keri Russell) who is obsessed with Jane Austen, especially Pride and Prejudice. Hayes spends her life savings on a Jane Austen experience in England. The whole thing is inspired by the plot line of Pride and Prejudice. I think it was supposed to be funny, don't get me wrong some parts were, but both my mom and I felt like we were missing something. I definitely will be going back and watching it to try to figure what I felt like I was missing. 



To sum up my week, I present the gator that has been harassing my father. My dad is a HUGE fishing fan, and he frequents the pond right by our house all the time. These past few weeks, this gator has been eyeing my dad, even has come after him a few times. Finally, we got him to call animal control to get rid of it. It took a LONG time for the animal trapper to actually get the gator, but once she did, we had to get pictures, of course! So here's the not so little menace. 



Well, that's my week in a nutshell. If you are a Jane Austen fan or have seen Austenland, I would love to here your thoughts! 
Can't wait to share about my college road trip I embark on tomorrow!



Saturday, June 21, 2014

Summer in Lilly



Love this Lilly headband I got from marinascloset on Etsy!










Happy National Wear Your Lilly Day!!!! I've never truly celebrated this annual holiday, so this year I went all out. Basically, I searched my closet and jewelry to find any Lilly pieces that looked good as a collective outfit. This is what was produced. I combined my Green Everything Nice headband from marinascloset, my Color Me Coral watch, and my Limeade Cheat Ya skort. And of course, I used my  Lilly tumbler. 

I personally love Etsy. It's a great resource if you want a unique gift (especially if you want something monogrammed). I also love it, because you can search a brand like "Lilly Pulitzer" in the search engine and a whole bounty of items come up. So, one afternoon I simply searched "Lilly Pulitzer"and I discovered marinascloset. Pretty much all the items in her shop are Lilly (lanyards, headbands,bows, keychains). I especially fell in love with her headbands. Going to a private school, I have to wear the same uniform every day, so in order to compensate, I accessorize. I never do too much, but usually I'll wear a super cute pair of earrings. But after discovering these Lilly headbands, my accessory game changed. I was finally able to incorporate Lilly into my uniform! She sells multiple different patterns and sizes. I opted for the smaller width band, because of my fear of headaches. (I always seem to get a headache when wearing a headband) The smaller width bands come in packs of six. I love each of the bands I got with my order! (And they don't give me headaches!!)

Skirt: Lilly Pulitzer Cosette skort//Shirt: Polo Ralph Lauren//Watch: Lilly Pulitzer//Headband: marinascloset//Purse: Dooney and Bourke//Shoes: Jack Rogers//Tumbler: Lilly Pulitzer