It was my junior year of college, I, like every other
student, couldn’t wait for the short Christmas break that marked
the end of a particularly rough semester. I had just started seeing
somebody, nothing serious at that point, but I really liked him. He
was different, and by different I mean he someone I found
interesting for a change. It was the first time I wasn’t going to
be headed home right away. Because of work I would have to stay an
extra ten days on campus before I could go see my family. I told
myself it wasn’t a big deal, that I could handle it. Who was I
kidding? I had a chapel date for the annual dismissal service,
which was good because it would keep me from throwing myself a pity
party and letting myself sulk in jealousy for all those who would
be on their way home to food with flavor and private showers. It
was a good date, we laughed at the jokes, joined in with the
timeless carols, and enjoyed each other’s company, no sulking. We
watched  Mr. Evan’s dismiss with his infamous solo. All of
the students eagerly waited for the  “Have yourself a merry
little Christmas… NOW!”  The line was sung, the chapel
emptied, and we sat enjoying the chaos. I wanted to sit there
forever. I didn’t want him to go home. It was a nine-hour drive to
Northern Michigan, and he had his car ready to go. But he didn’t.
Instead, he walked with me to the dining hall where we ate bland
food on styrofoam plates. Every morning for those ten days, he had
breakfast with me in the Square where we played endless games of
Scrabble and talked for hours. I couldn’t believe it. Every morning
there he was, sitting on the other side of an uncomfortable booth,
drinking bad coffee with watered down creamer. With me. He chose to
stay with me. He didn’t have to. We had been “dating” less than
three months. He had no obligation to stay. But, he did. Those ten
days felt like nothing. Do you know why? Because every morning I
would get dressed and walk into that little campus restaurant and
see him sitting at that booth with two coffees and a Scrabble
board. A year later, he asked me to marry him. Stephanie &
Jesse Wedding [Captured by Studio Cline] Lake Portrait 045


Saying Goodbye to Summer

When I was younger, I would never admit it, but I looked forward to those final days of summer.  I couldn’t wait for school to start.  I remember running up and down the aisles of Office Depot in search of the perfect three-ring binder, dozens of mechanical pencils, that one ink pen that would glide across pages with ease and of course notebooks.  Yes, I was that nerdy child that had all the tabs in my binder labeled by hour and the first week of outfits planned in the middle of July.  I miss her.  As the years have gone by I’ve lost touch with her.

September is getting closer everyday and two suitcases lay on my bedroom floor.  Empty.  I just want to savor every last minute of summer:  spending my days poolside with an iced coffee in hand, looking at my feet and seeing flip flops and toe rings and not nylons and heels, and getting in cars with friends and just driving for the sake of driving. Maybe I feel that beginning to pack those suitcases is a type a surrender, an acknowledgment that this freedom isn’t permanent.  That like all good things, it has an end.

When I get like this I have to remind myself that if life were one perpetual lazy summer, we would tire of it and grow bored.  To that I say ” I grew up in Southern California where it is forever summer!” Haha.

On a more serious note, I accept that moving on and letting go is a part of life. We have to enjoy the moments while we have them and make memories while we can. Time stands still for no one. Carpe Diem!

Summer to me: feeling the sand and ocean under my feet:)