Tuesday, December 13, 2016

The Final Stretch

These past few weeks from Thanksgiving break to Winter break are always the most stressful for college students. I worked on two final projects, one group project, one group essay, one individual essay, and I still have two finals to go!
Here are just a few of the keepsakes from the moments that have helped me take my mind off of homework and finals for a little bit (in order to keep myself sane).

My friend's dog, Bubba, came to visit and clearly I've never been happier. Dogs are the best way to ease your mind. Bubba is a 120 pound Bernese Mountain Dog!

My friend Molly absolutely crushed the Ugly Christmas Sweater competition with her Darth Vader sweater and matching mug!
I took a trip downtown to buy some Christmas presents and study at a local coffee shop, Uncommon Grounds. Of course when I'm in the neighborhood I always indulge in a cupcake from My Little Cupcake. This one is flavored Cinnamon Toast Crunch!
Finals week definitely stresses me out, but I'm thankful for these great things that keep me plugging away. Now, because this song has been stuck in my mind for literally a week, here's a gif of it accurately representing how I feel during my study sessions.

Keep plugging away and feel free to follow me on social media or email me with any questions you have!

Email: njackson@mail.smcvt.edu
Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Monday, November 28, 2016

11/21-11/27: Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. Obviously, I love to indulge on delicious foods all day long, but I'm also so happy to be around friends and family for a week. This Thanksgiving break my friend from school, Liam, stayed at my house with my family. Since he's from Minnesota it isn't always easy to go home over short breaks. Luckily (or maybe unluckily since my town is boring with not much to do) we were able to host him for the holiday.
This Thanksgiving I am thankful for a lot of things.
1. My brother got a job for after he graduates from college in May.
2. My family is all healthy.
3. I was able to see my cousins dogs.
4. My other cousin's kid has begun to walk. He's growing up so fast!
5. My mom made me TONS of delicious food while I was home.
6. I was able to savor a great breakfast from my favorite restaurant, The Dairy Center.
7. Everyone had safe and happy trips to and from home on the holidays.

As part of Random Acts of Kindness at SMC, my friends and I wrote what we're thankful for. I'm thankful for my mom's taco salad and my philosophy tutor, Mike Ruble.
One of my guilty pleasures? My Little Cupcake. Pictured here is me stuffing my face with their apple cider donut flavor!
I love seeing my friends from high school when I go home for break. Here's my friend Sarah and I!
Here's Liam and I still smiling after a week spent together playing card games with my family, watching movies, eating turkey, and doing a 1000 piece puzzle!
For your weekly dog picture, here is me with my roommate's dog, Jack! Jackypoo is a great dog and I'm so jealous she got to spend her break with him in Carmel, NY.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and time off of work! To stay tuned on my life or to have your questions answered, feel free to message me and follow me on social media!
Email: njackson@mail.smcvt.edu
Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Monday, November 14, 2016

11/7-11/13: Poverty

This week's theme is poverty. I had two nights of service trip orientation to prepare all the students going on extended service trips. I was accepted to go on a service trip to Kentucky over spring break! The first night of orientation was about poverty. A professor at the school who came from Iran talked to us about his childhood and how he came from nothing and worked his way up to where he is now, here. The next night we discussed the differences in cultures with a professor in the anthropology department. After attending both nights, I have realized how grateful and thankful I am for the way I was raised and the resources I had growing up.

Here are some snapchats from the rest of my week!

My roommate Kristen and I took a stroll down Church Street in Burlington and went on a nice dinner date to American Flatbread!
My team, Volleyciraptors, for the Volleyball for Veterans fundraiser! We had so much fun even though we lost all three of our games!
As a Vermonter, it is a necessity to bring Vermont Maple Syrup to brunch every weekend! Nothing is better than Vermont's gold.
On Saturday I was a lunch host for the first time at our second Sample St. Mike's fall open house! I love talking to families about St. Mike's because I can go on and on talking about this school! :)
Volleyball season is over. I'm proud of the team and happy for my amazing roommate on being named one of the captains for next year! Even though they had some tough losses, it was a great season to watch!
The weather has been so nice lately that my friends and I were able to do our homework outside! I'm loving the 62 degree weather in November. Here's my gorgeous friend, Kara!
Unfortunately, I didn't see a dog this week, but here is an older picture of my childhood dog! My family had Shelby for 11 years before we had to put her down my senior year of high school. She was the best dog ever! We aren't certain what kind of dog she was, but we think she was a mix of a golden retriever and a black lab.

For more stories and to see what I'm up to on a daily basis, feel free to contact me or follow me on social media!

Email: njackson@mail.smcvt.edu
Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Monday, November 7, 2016

10/31-11/6: FOIA and Sunshine Act

This week I worked really hard on a project for my Media Law and Ethics in a Digital Age class. In the class we had been learning about the Freedom of Information Act and the Sunshine Act. There were four components to our research project. We were assigned a local town and we had to go to the town clerk's office to request information on a home sale. We had to look up information on a sex offender in the town. We had to go to an open meeting that falls under the Sunshine Act in our assigned town, and we had to go to the courthouse and sit in on an arraignment. After finishing all of these tasks, we had to right a reflection paper and discuss each component too. This week, I focused on half of the project. I went to a natural resource committee meeting and sat in on a court arraignment.
This week I also had a week of Spanish exams. As a Spanish minor, I am currently taking Third Semester Spanish. I have this class on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. This week we had a written exam on Monday, an in class essay question on Wednesday, and an oral exam on Friday.
After a long week of homework, studying, and exams, I was very relieved when the weekend came! Both my roommate and I had a friend from home coming to visit and another one of my roommates had her golden retriever for a night!

Here are a couple of snapshots from my week!

It felt so good to see my best friend, Taylor! 2.5 months was too long apart!

My roommate, Kristen, and I LOVE cheesecake and are thankful Alliot supplies it so often!

And of course, I can't close out my blog without a picture of me with a dog (I realize I forgot last weekend, but I was a Dalmatian for Halloween so I think that's good enough). This is my roommate Jade's dog, Paisley.
Feel free to email me with any questions you have, or follow me on social media to catch instant updates on my hectic life!

Email: njackson@mail.smcvt.edu
Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

10/24-10/30: Halloween

The week leading up to Halloween was filled with excitement in my suite! My roommates and I all got Halloween care packages from our families and we decorated the suite with Halloween lights, signs, and even pumpkins! One of my roommates, Jade, lives in the Northeast Kingdom in Vermont (about an hour and a half away) and her parents brought us each a pumpkin with our name engraved into it!

To start off the week, I took a picture for the school's HerCampus club that was promoting self-love last week in Alliot. Why am I beautiful? I'm beautiful because I love taco salad!!

My friends, Aaron and Sam, took the easy route and decided to dress up as Drake and Josh for Halloween. They went around saying, "Hug me brotha!"
My friend Jake (also the president for the Class of 2019) and I went as a firefighter and a dalmation. I tried my hardest too look more like a dalmation than a cow while still being on a college budget.
Here's the cute pumpkin Jade's parents made me! They told us that if you scrape the name into the pumpkin when it is little, then the name will grow as the pumpkin does!

That's all for my Halloween week, but I hope everyone had a great and safe time celebrating (without any clowns)! My other favorite costumes I saw on campus throughout the weekend were the cast of Stranger Things, a group of bananas, and Judge Judy!

Feel free to email me with any questions you have, or follow me on social media to catch instant updates!
Email: njackson@mail.smcvt.edu
Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Monday, October 24, 2016

10/17-10/23: Laughter

To finish up the 4 day weekend, I decided to go home for the night on Monday when I got back from Massachusetts. I longed for a Dairy Center breakfast with my grandparents in my hometown. I spent the day on Tuesday admiring the view from my house and the Vermont foliage before heading back to school that night to watch my roommate play in their home Volleyball game. My week was filled with laughter with my friends as we talked about what we did over the long weekend and prepared for the weekend to come.

This pictures doesn't do Vermont justice, but I think it shows it's beauty the best it can in a picture. Here's the view from my house!
I couldn't resist. I had to show another. #ILoVermont

My Uncle works at Ben and Jerry's and is allowed to take home 3 pints a day! Tbh I think that's the only reason my roommates keep me around. (jk, I like to think they like me for more than just the ice cream)
My suite mates and I try to be the best roomies possible and cheer on Sarah at all of her home games!
Campus has started to get very cold. As much as I love Vermont, I wish it didn't get so cold here. I can't believe it's only half way through October and I've already brought out my Bean Boots (which are a must up here in Vermont).
And of course, I couldn't leave my blog off without a picture of me with  at least one dog. Here's my best friend from home's dogs that I saw this week! (Kaba and Aquella)

I hope you seeing a little bit about my week!
Catch me on social media for more pictures of dogs or sarcastic tweets.

Email: njackson@mail.smcvt.edu
Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

10/10-10/16: Home

After a stressful week of studying and midterms, it felt great to finally have a four day weekend. I spent the week longing to be anywhere but studying, and looking forward to my trip down to Massachusetts to visit my boyfriend's family. After leaving his house, I realized how much I missed my own family and decided to go home for a night before classes started up again. I guess it isn't all that bad living only an hour away from campus.

Here's a couple snapshots of what I did throughout the week leading up to the October break!

I'm thankful for my suite mate, Sarah,  and our random trips to Al's French Fries for fries and chocolate milkshakes.

Cheesecake is one of my favorite desserts, and also is one of the reasons I gained the Freshmen 15 last year. Thank you Alliot for always having it on hand.

A bunch of my friends and I went to the Volleyball game against Southern New Hampshire University to watch our friends kill it in the game! We printed out embarrassing pictures of Sarah to cheer her on.

I carpooled to Groveland, MA to meet my boyfriend's family (and dog, Oliver) for the first time!
And of course, it wouldn't be a Day in the Life of Natalie Jackson without a picture of myself and a dog. Featured here is the puppy that my boyfriend's friend just got. Stella is absolutely adorable!

I hope you all enjoyed seeing how my week went! If you're interested in seeing it day-by-day check me out on social media. Feel free to email me with any questions you have as well!

Email: njackson@mail.smcvt.edu
Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Monday, October 10, 2016

10/3-10/9: Love

Looking back on my week, I realize how fortunate I am to be surrounded by such a fun, loving community. My week started off great with tons of homemade goodies from my roommates' parents. Since I live in a suite with three roommates that all have the best parents around, we tend to indulge on maybe too many sweets (Jk, there's no such thing as too many sweets). Now I'd show you a picture of the banana bread, chocolate covered pretzels, apple caramel dessert, chocolate chip cookie bars, freshly picked apples, cinnamon buns, and homemade salsa, but unfortunately (and I'm super embarrassed to say this), everything was gone within two days... Is the sophomore 15 a thing? 'Cause if it isn't, it will be after I'm done the school year. Note to self: continue to go to all of my team's intramural soccer games to help work off the sweets.

Matt Doyle '19 published some great pictures from the Cross Country race hosted by St. Mikes. Although I'm not an athlete, I still made the pictures because I'm quite the enthusiastic fan (I try to be the biggest fan for my roommates. One plays volleyball and one runs cross country). You can check out all of his great photos here, but for now, enjoy this one of SMC's biggest fan, aka, myself.

This week a friend of mine from my freshmen seminar class last year sent me this snapchat. He spotted Rob (the greatest stir fry maker Sedexo ever did hire in Alliot). Rob now works at Union Jack's on Shelburne Rd. if anybody is interested in going to visit him!

Later in the week I had the privilege of welcoming perspective students at St. Mike's October open house. Mike the Knight made a guest appearance, and looks absolutely stunning if I do say so myself.

Even though I only live an hour away from home, I don't go home at all. I believe it's hard for people to make friends at school if they go home too much, so I rarely do. I'm blessed to have a Mom that takes such great pictures of my home just to send to my siblings and I so that we never forget where we came from. Look at this exceptionally beautiful picture she sent my way.
Fall in Enosburg Falls, Vermont is always the most beautiful.

In light of the fall season, a couple of friends of mine from the volleyball team and myself decided to explore the area. Like usual, we took a trip downtown to Church Street. Church Street is one of my favorite places because I am guaranteed to see dogs and eat kettle corn. This week was especially better than usual on Church Street because I saw a corgi, my absolute favorite dog there is!
Natalie's favorite foods: kettle corn, Ben & Jerry's milk and cookies ice cream, Mom's taco salad, chicken parm, and cheesecake

This perfect dog's name is Lucy!

I hope you enjoyed hearing about my week! To stay tuned throughout the week, feel free to follow me on social media:
Email: njackson@mail.smcvt.edu
Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Monday, October 3, 2016

Back-to-School Festivities

With the excitement of the first month back at school, I have been so busy with getting back into my school routine and reconnecting with friends. Here are some snapshots of how great the first month back went!

Last year my roommate (and now best friend) and I were randomly selected to live together. Our friendship began in Joyce 411. We became so obsessed with each other that we decided to live together again with two of our other friends in Quad Commons! This picture is from move in day!

Since I came from a small town, home means so much to me. My favorite way to bring my hometown to my new home is through pictures, hence why I have so many in my room.

After the first week of classes, some of my friends from the volleyball team and myself went hiking at Jay Peak. On the way back to school, we stopped at my house for my Mom's delicious taco salad and apple crisp. To give them a true taste of a Vermonter's life I took them out for a ride on my family's side-by-side Ranger.
This month I received an award for my excellence in Calculus 1 last year! Hard work really does pay off!
I could not be happier living with such a great group of friends. As we are all members of the honor's program, we decided to live in honor's housing in Quad Commons because we had such a great experience in the honor's housing last year where we all met! Joyce 4 South moves to Quad Commons 2!
Even though I only live an hour away from campus, I don't go home often and was very excited when my parents came to visit me for parent's weekend. My parents treated my friends and I to dinner and a cruise on Lake Champlain for the night!
Living in college is a struggle sometimes because of the lack of dogs on campus. As I am clearly a dog activist, I couldn't help but share at least one picture of a rare dog spotting in my blog. 
This month I went Sea Kayaking on Lake Champlain with the Adventure Sports Program! This was my first time participating in one of their adventures but I can guarantee I will definitely be doing another. It was so much fun!

I hope you all enjoyed seeing how my first month back went! To keep updated on my adventures at St. Mike's feel free to follow me on my other social media accounts!

You can find me at:
Email: njackson@mail.smcvt.edu
Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Monday, August 29, 2016

Am I Back to School Yet?

Just 3 more days. THREE MORE DAYS.
How did I spend my summer? Counting down the days until I was back at St. Mike’s with my friends (pictured below are my suite mates and myself). Don’t get me wrong summer is great, but I LOVE St. Mike’s.

People from my hometown ask me how my first year at college was and most of the time I respond saying, “Let’s just say I cried when I left my dorm room for the last time cause I loved it so much.” Most people think it's pathetic, I know… But I left this school year in a pretty rough state in my life so I think I had an excuse to be emotional. Toward the end of the school year things started to look up for me and my friends became my life. I really had no desire to come home to the small town of Enosburg--population approximately 2,500.
Although I was sad to leave school last spring, I knew my summer wasn’t going to be THAT bad. I had one internship, another regular job, and tons of activities with my friends from home planned. At St. Mike’s I’m a MJDA major, aka Media Studies, Journalism, and Digital Arts (people are always so I’m pressed when I tell them that because they think I’m a triple major… and then I throw in Business and Spanish minors too just to throw them off). I don’t really know exactly what I want to do after college, but does that really matter right now? How long do you think I can go with getting away with saying that?
Because I don’t really know what I want to do, I plan on having a different internship in every media field each summer. I did after all need to find something to pass the time away until I was back at school. The summer after my freshmen year at school, last summer, I interned at my town’s local newspaper. Mainly my job consisted of interviewing people my boss told me about, and then writing stories. I would also read police reports and summarize the ones related to people in my county. We were a weekly newspaper, so the day before we published I would spend the day editing every single thing that went into the newspaper. My first story of the summer was about a funeral for a fireman that died in line of duty. Other stories included a championship softball game, a teacher of the year, a town forest enhancement project, a local business opening, a local business closing, and a farm that found a way to help clean up the green algae in Lake Champlain! Here's one of the pictures I took to match an article I wrote covering a playoff soccer game for a town in my county.

It was fun interviewing and writing about so many people in my county. My favorite story of the summer took place at the end of July when I went skydiving and wrote about the not-for-profit organization that I went through. It was an adventure of a lifetime! Going out of my comfort zone and doing something that I was scared to do was easily the most thrilling experience. I surprisingly had such an amazing time jumping out of an airplane with three of the group's volunteers that I had never met before. 

I am so thankful for the advice that St. Mike's career development office gave me last year. Without them, I would never have had these amazing opportunities.
When I wasn’t out being adventurous and taking advantage of amazing opportunities that my internship provided me with, I was bartending at our local country club. I loved this job. I loved seeing the same men every Thursday night for men’s league and the same couples every Friday night for couple’s league. I got to know my co workers so well which made every shift enjoyable and not feel like work too. By the end of the summer I realized I was really going to miss my coworkers and the the regular golfers. 
Although I had a ton of fun with both of my jobs, I am so ready to go back to school. Just three more days and I will be reunited with my friends. I will be moving into my suite and watching my suite mates crush it in their volleyball games and cross country meets. I will be creating new meals with Alliot’s limited options. I will be stuck in the library late at night. I will be running across the hall to tell my floormates random information. I will be avoiding going to the gym. I miss all of this; I miss the Alliot workers, the professors, and the students that I would see everyday in passing. St. Mike’s is my home now and I cannot wait to be reunited in just THREE days.

Check out the awesome video I created from the two go pros that were used when I went skydiving  here. Again, thanks to St. Mike's for the amazing media classes they offer that taught me how to create videos like this one!