Friday, December 19, 2014

End of My 7th Semester

Hey, everyone!

So this is the end of my 7th semester. Oh my.

The first night of Hanukah was on Tuesday night, and for the first time ever, we had an electric menorah!

I took my Jewish history final earlier today. Not bad at all, thankfully.

Then, I spent a few hours with friends at Hunter. I had planned to go see the Rockefeller Center tree, but it was too cold so we just lounged around.

My friend got me a stuffed Corduroy! So adorable!!

Check this video out! It shows the restoration of a Renaissance sculpture that shattered to pieces 12 years ago when its pedestal couldn't support its weight. I have to go see it when I'm free next semester along with the Cubist exhibit that's going on right now.

The Met is just a must-see for anyone who wants to make a few hours of their day more beautiful.

What else to tell you all?

Some thoughts/lessons from this semester:

1. Whatever you want to do, start it!

2. Tomorrow doesn't exist yet. Only this very second exists. Do all you can with it. And yes, it's ok if that sometimes means taking naps. haha

3. Don't give up when things get tough. Ride the wave.

4. Don't be intimidated by difficult things. Break them down to make them easier to get through.

5. See the big picture. Yes, right now, you may be feeling miserable while studying, but you're doing it for a reason. Work hard now so that your tomorrow will be easier.

6. Find joy in learning.

7. Embrace creative/innovative thinking.

8. Give yourself well-deserved breaks from "life." And no. I don't mean taking Facebook breaks between working. I mean doing something that's good for you. Exercise, read a book (for pleasure), dance, listen to music, etc.

9. Plan out your time! So important so that you don't feel guilty that you never got around to something.

10. Have a regular bedtime and waking up time. (This is a hard one! haha)

I will be posting every 2 weeks until the spring semester begins. :)


Quote of the Week

In graphic form.

Courtesy of

You're Halfway Through, Guys!

Just a quick note to say that you guys can do it, you've already gotten through two days (possibly three, as many professors seemed to have used the reading day to schedule finals earlier than originally planned by Hunter) and you've only got a few more, if that! You can do it! And then time for rest and going home, however you get home, is so close.

Going home means something different to everyone, this was me about a month ago.

PS - I turned twenty, on Wednesday!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

One down, three to go?

I'm in the middle of finals week right now. I keep a running tally in my head of exams to take, papers to write, and classes that I'm 100% done with. So far, out of the four papers and four finals I have to take, I've written three papers and taken one final. Done with one class entirely. Just one paper and three finals to go. Woo.

My brain is starting to implode from all the editing and re-editing and reading and re-reading of my papers that I've been doing lately. Last night, I finished my poetry paper, only to stay up until 3 AM thinking of more ways to improve it. I had to scribble them on a piece of paper and decipher them the next morning. Apparently, my best thoughts come at 3 AM, after I've passed the tired stage of 1 AM, the loopy and everything-is-hilarious stage of 2 AM, and moved into the "obviously this is a great idea" genius stage of 3 AM. Let's just say, some of the stuff I wrote down was very confusing.

I finished my poetry paper and handed it in today. I'm sad to be done with this class (20th and 21st Century American Poetry with Amy Robbins). I took it on a whim, on the recommendation of someone who loved it. I'm not really a poetry person, and I had minimal experience/skills in analyzing poetry, but I ended up loving the class and my professor! She was so fantastic and dedicated and insightful. Truly a privilege to be in the presence of someone so great. It really goes to show that you can end up loving something you don't think you're very good at.

On the other hand, I'm glad to be done with my philosophy paper, since this class has been very difficult and stressful for me this semester. Unfortunately, I still have to take a final for this class. Who gives a philosophy final???

Last night I decided to treat myself and make a home cooked meal for myself. I made shrimp oreganata, and it was super delicious and easy to make. Here's how I did it:

  1. This is usually better with very big shrimp (I think mine were jumbo ones). Deshell them; this is really easier than it looks. All you have to do is pull the shell and legs off with your fingers It's a bit of an icky job, but not terribly difficult. You can also get shrimp that are already deshelled. Place your shrimp in a bowl. 
  2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and coat a tray with a stick of butter. Make sure it's well-coated, because butter will burn away quickly if you don't put enough on.
  3. Coat the shrimp in oil (or egg) and then dip them into Italian breadcrumbs. You can add more stuff to the breadcrumb coating, including different spices. The breadcrumbs will already have a lot in them, so check before you add anything. I just used the breadcrumbs and some pepper. You can also add garlic for extra flavor!
  4. Place the shrimp on the tray in rows. They can touch each other, since they shrink when cooked.
  5. Cook for 10 minutes. Shrimp cooks very thoroughly, very quickly. Make sure to flip them after 5 minutes! I didn't do this, and mine came out fine, but they might have been more even if I had. Shrimp is done cooking when it's pink. This may be difficult to tell through the breadcrumbs, but just check carefully and you'll be able to see.
I made a yam (sweet potato) and broccoli with my shrimp. This was one of the most delicious and easy to make meals ever (once I got into the swing of the recipe, that is). Cooking was relaxing after having finished two term papers (one was 13 pages, the other was 11). I ate and watched some Netflix and tried not to think about anything academic. Sometimes during finals week that's all you need: a moment to decompress.