14 October 2013

Fall Break

Hello readers,

School just resumed after a fabulous four-day break. A lot of people left campus, either to go home, visit nearby cities like Seattle or Vancouver, or to go camping. I ended up staying here, which I don't regret at all. My break was pretty busy!

Break started after our last class ended on Wednesday. Right after I got out of Intro to International Relations at 4:30, I met up with some other environmental studies students to work on our concentrations. Environmental studies is a really cool, interdisciplinary major, and unlike other majors, you can't simply sign a form declaring it and be inducted into the program. Instead, you spend the class that I'm currently in (ENVS 220, usually during the fall of your sophomore year) designing a concentration around a specific area of interest. If you're double majoring, like I am, you still fill out the concentration proposal form, but in reference to how your two majors may be relevant to each other. Instead of the proposal, minors write a paper connecting their major and environmental studies. Our first drafts of our proposals were due on Friday, so a few of us got together to try and crank them out before we were too far into break. That evening, I played some music with some people, then spent more time working on my proposal.

On Thursday, some friends and I decided to throw a "dinner party" of sorts. We went downtown to get groceries, then came back and cooked for most of the day. We decided to eat and cook in Holmes, which is the newest dorm, since they have a really nice (and big) kitchen (and a family-style dinner table). Because one of my friends who came is vegan, we tried to make as many things vegan as we could! We made a lot of food: pasta, tomato sauce, challah, chocolate-avocado cupcakes, monkey bread, salad, and artichoke dip (and we bought sparking apple cider).

The initial table settings. Everyone brought their own plate/cup/silverware, but I folded cheap paper napkins to make it semi-fancy.
The group! Minus Emma, who was taking the picture.
Friday I went downtown for a few hours and grabbed lunch at the food carts. I recommend trying one (or more) if you're ever in Portland- they're really tasty, there are a lot of options, and they're usually pretty cheap. After I got back I watched a lot of things on Netflix. I'm currently working on making my way through Breaking Bad, and I also watched an amazing Disney Channel Original Movie with one of my roommates.

I dedicated most of Saturday to getting my homework done, but I had a surprisingly small amount to do. I was in the library for a good chunk of the afternoon, but afterwards two of my roommates and I went downtown to get pizza. We also got ice cream.

On Sunday my brother and sister-in-law took me apple picking. It was a really nice day, and felt very autumnal. The orchard was full of families and was also selling pumpkins and Halloween decorations. It kind of made me miss being home for fall, but luckily LC gets pretty festive, especially around Halloween.
The orchard!
Tonight is the beginning of the Environmental Affairs Symposium. The opening event is at the zoo, which is really exciting. As soon as I get out of ENVS lab, I'm going to get on a shuttle to get to the zoo. I won't get back until late tonight, so I'm trying to finish all of my homework early.
If you have any questions, about the environmental studies program, things to do around Portland, or how to make vegan challah, email me at rekidder@lclark.edu.