Friday, January 22, 2016

Snow Day!

What better way to start off the semester than with a few snow days? This semester, I flew back a few days early to adjust to the east coast, gear up for my last semester, and most importantly, enjoy the snow! Before I left for winter break, there were only a few days of light snow, but nothing stuck to the ground. I love when it snows, it's so beautiful to watch it fall all over campus and makes drinking hot coco with a candy cane that much better!
First, I spent a few days in White River Junction with my boyfriend Paul where there was the perfect amount of snow to walk around and enjoy the sunny day! Of course, being my first day back in the snow I slipped. Not once, but twice as we were walking out to the snowy field and once again as we were walking back. Aside from the slipping and sliding, it was a perfect sunny, snowy day!
Kicking my feet up after walking for a bit

It was a tad chilly!
Paul checking out a tree platform we found
After, we headed back to St. Mikes to unpack and get ready for the semester. On Saturday, we decided to take advantage of not having to worry about any homework yet and spent the afternoon at Smugglers Notch. It's so easy because it's less than an hour from campus and the pass was only $65! And renting all the gear is about $25, so even if you don't have all the gear (like me) you can still rent it at the mountain and not spend too much money!
I have only been skiing a handful of times, so coming back after not skiing at all last year (since I was abroad last spring) I was nervous that I wouldn't be able to keep up or that I would fall even more than just walking around on the snow! But it turned out to be one of my best days skiing yet! I had to of course fall once on my first ride down, but the rest of the day was smooth sailing and I like to think that I did pretty good! It definitely made me excited to use the pass for the rest of the season and try to get as much out of it as I can before I graduate!
The crazy pretty view on the way down looking at the top of the mountain, lost in the clouds
Gearing up for the semester is exciting but scary! Being my last semester, there's a lot that I have to finish. My MJD senior seminar (a documentary film) will be finished in April, the Dominican Republic Service Trip with MOVE is over Spring Break, the Acabella's have another successful semester ahead of us, and I have a new job working at a store downtown helping to run their social media. I am more than thrilled to be able to have these experiences. Last semester was crazy busy, and I'm hoping this semester will be a tad more toned down from that. But being busy is the best part of St. Mikes! Everything I do, every minute is spent doing something I love!

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Why Being in Vermont in the Fall is the Best

Being from a state that doesn't see too much seasonal change, being in Vermont is a total switch up from the norm. I have fallen in love with so many aspects of Vermont, but fall is probably one of the main reasons because of all the great things you get to do during fall. Thinking back, as November begins to get colder and colder, these are some of the main reasons I have fallen for fall!

  • Apple Picking! It was one of the first things I did with MOVE when I got to St. Mikes and it was the first time I had ever gone. They do a First Year Apple Picking activity and all the apples picked go to a local food shelf. It is an amazing tradition and from then on I've loved going apple picking with friends and even got to take my parents when they came to visit this past fall break!

My parents as we stroll down the aisle of apples

  • Iced coffee becomes hot coffee...and hot chocolate! I love iced coffee and usually make it that way, but as it becomes cooler and I don't want to hold ice cold bottles in my hands, hot coffee slowly takes its place and it fills my heart and wakes me up on the cold mornings! Plus, you can have all different flavors. My personal favorite? Mocha, because it's basically hot chocolate with a little coffee added in. When my parents visited for the break, we went to Sneakers, a popular breakfast restaurant right down the street from school, and waited for our table at the cutest coffee place, Scout & Co. which had delicious mocha's! I will definitely be going back soon!
My one true love: Mocha's
My roommate Callie as she also sips on a Mocha. 
  • Hot Cider, Cold Cider & Cider Donuts. The hands down most delicious part of fall in the north east. Oh. My. Goodness. I had only had hot cider out of the packet that you mix into hot water and did not like it at all. Then, you come to Vermont and you can have it cold. And that's when I fell in love with cider. I slowly began to warm up to hot cider, and cider donuts will forever be the most amazing part of fall. Delicious in every way, there will never be such a thing as too much cider anything!
My mom after we went apple picking and were warming up with donuts and warm cider!
  • The Leaves! The colors on the mountains are like nothing I've ever seen before and as you drive on the highway it is like a painting. Just driving through it all is the most amazing experience.
A beautiful day apple picking at Shelburne Orchards!
  • The Holidays! Fall is full of some fun holidays, like Halloween and Thanksgiving. St. Mike's always does a Halloween dance and it is a weekend full of fun costumes, which I love because I love to dress up! But Thanksgiving is so wonderful too. St. Mike's does special dinners for holidays like Thanksgiving a week or so before, and it is the perfect cue up to the real deal. I always look forward to the meals because everyone, and I mean everyone, goes and fills themselves with turkey and mashed potatoes and cider!
When it comes to Vermont, fall is amazing. But really, you can't go wrong with any season! I am so excited for when the snow comes and turns St. Mike's into a winter wonderland! 

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Becoming a Coffee Drinker

I've never been a huge fan of coffee. I loved the smell in the morning, but never felt the need to follow the morning ritual of a cup (or two...or five) every day. But starting off senior year, I had a feeling that I would soon grow to love and appreciate coffee in all of it's glory.
Now, a little over a month in, I am officially a coffee drinker. It has happened, after 21 years of not needing coffee I have finally reached the point where a cup of joe in the morning helps to get the gears in my brain going and helps my eyes go from sealed shut to somewhat open. If you have yet to become a consistent coffee drinker, congrats...but just you wait! I thought I'd go without coffee forever, but I find that my love grows stronger every day.
And with that in mind, I think it only right to depict the phases of coffee love through Elf, hands down the best holiday movie around (my mom and I still watch it multiple times when I am home for the holidays).

Phase 1: The First Sip
When you first try to drink coffee (especially without sugar or milk) and realize that it smells way better than it tastes.

Phase 2: The Adjustment
At least for me, it took a bit of time (and I'm still working on it) to not pour tons of milk and sugar (and chocolate) in my coffee.

Phase 3: Attempting To Add Less Sugar & Milk
And then it all backfires and it's too bitter. But you've committed to it and have to fathom every sip.

Phase 4:When You Begin To Appreciate A Good Cup Of Coffee
And you can start to tell the difference between the good stuff and....the hot brown water some people try to pass as coffee.

Phase 5: When You've Had Too Much
And suddenly your hands are a little shaky but you're in too deep and the energy levels are off the charts.

Phase 6: When You Run Out
And it is the worst. And you forgot to go to the store. May the odds be ever in your favor.

Phase 7: The Unconditional Love
It's happened and you don't know what's happened to you. You've finally fallen head over heels in love with coffee and there's no going back.

My love of coffee is official. After 3 years in college, my 4th year has begun this love and there's no going back now!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Back at it for Senior Year

It's been a while since I've visited my St. Mike's blog! There has been a lot going on between when I was last at St. Mike's (for the Fall 2014 semester) and now. I am entering into my senior year; a thing that I thought would never roll around and couldn't be more excited. I'm excited to see my professors, to see my friends, and to get back into the swing of things here on campus! Last semester, I had the wonderful opportunity to study abroad in Seville, Spain and had the best time. I met so many incredible people and fell head over heels in love with the city. I have no doubt in my mind that one day; I will end up back there!
This summer, I have been easing my way back into campus life by working in the Marketing Department. I have been assisting in a variety of projects, taking photos, and making the video series First Year Fridays for the incoming students. It has been a great experience and I've learned a lot!
Mike the Knight photo shoot around campus
Pre-Orientation Weekend (POW)
Summer Researcher
One of the skulls in the Biology department
While working on campus, I have been living in downtown Burlington learning to cook for myself and hanging out with my two wonderful housemates. Between eating pints of Ben and Jerry's and watching New Girl together, it has been an epic summer that was hard to see go. But I am so thrilled for the upcoming year!
This year, I'm living in an apartment with 3 other girls I am so excited to be living with. I'll be the Alumni Relations Coordinator for Founders Society. I will be the coordinator for the Dominican Republic Extended Service Trip. And I will be Co-President (with my good friend Casey) of the AcaBella's. There will be a lot going on, to say the least, but it's everything I love doing on campus and people I love spending time with.
People have begun to ask me about my "post-grad plans" which reminds me of being a senior in high school and figuring out colleges. There were always the people who asked where you were going to college before you even started applying, and that's kind of how it feels now. I have no idea. I have absolutely no idea, and I'm totally fine with that. I see all my friends who have just graduated and just think about the different routes they've all taken. Some choose to do service, some find a job right away in their field, and some find a job that are temporary for now, but they have fun with it. I know I'll figure it out at some point, but for now, I'm focusing on enjoying my last year at St. Mike's!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

I'm Going Abroad!

I, Kathryn Miyahira, am going abroad.
I can't believe it's actually here. It feels like just yesterday that I was thinking about when I wanted to go abroad, where I wanted to go, and what program I should do. It was so much to think about, and now, it's all decided and about to happen!
I am going through API to Seville, Spain where I will be living with a host family, be taking classes (Monday through Thursday!) and will be traveling all over! I have 12 days left until I leave, and I am anxious and so excited! I have started to review my final departure packet for my program, am starting to plan packing (quite a process and skill, I am finding out), and have started my new blog for when I will be abroad.
If you would like to find out about my adventures while I am in Spain, my blog is
See you senior year St. Mikes!

Friday, December 5, 2014

Why I love Bergeron

St. Mikes has some great buildings on its campus, but hands down my favorite is Bergeron, the media studies building. That is where I have a majority of my classes and spend most of my time. Inside, there are two computer labs, a regular classroom, plus all of the professors offices right there! You get out of the lab, walk two feet, and then there is your professors office if you have any questions. To check out what the building looks like, here is a link to Nate's blog where he breaks down Bergeron.  It's so easy to talk to professors after class about projects or to borrow a lens from them if you need one. They're right there to help you out, and I think that really built a strong community for the MJD department.
Along with having access to the labs, we also get to use all the programs on the computers, like photoshop, bridge, illustrator, indesign, and audition. It's so helpful since you don't need to pay for the programs that you're going to need on a day to day basis. Plus, the building is close to all of the housing on campus, so when you need to do a lot of work late at night, you have to worry about walking far in the snow.
My Photojournalism class even gave us Canon cameras (with a bunch of lenses that you can check out in the library) to use. Here are some of the projects that we have been working on throughout the semester.
From our "People without People" assignment,
"A Day in the Life" following a fellow student in the class to capture a typical day
Above is a multimedia where we put together still pictures, natural sound, and interviews to make a video. This will also be how I make my final project about the costume crafts lab at St. Mikes. 
As you can see, there is so much that we get to do in our MJD classes, they give us so much equipment to use, professors right next to our work spaces to use as a resource, and a building that is so close to everything. I can't imagine what it would be like to not have such a great building and community in the department.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

What I've learned from my 2+ years in college

There are a lot of things that you realize about yourself and the people around you when you enter into college, wherever you may go. You come to know yourself better, you change, you grow, and you become the person that, hopefully, you've always wanted to be. As I come to an end with my 5th semester at St. Mikes, prepare to go abroad, and think about how next year will be my last here, I contemplate the many different things that I have learned, both in and outside of the classroom, and I thought I would share.

  • You will find some of your best friends in college, but that doesn't mean you find them right away. My first year, I lived on a great floor and met some amazing people, some of the nicest at St. Mikes, arguably. But as you enter into your second and even third year, you live in different places with different people, take new classes and just know more about the school and the people in it. My sophomore year, I met my two best friends, Callie and Lily, in our Media Revolutions class because we would always grab tea after class together. That class is also how I met my boyfriend, Paul. I actually first met Callie when I came to visit St. Mikes. We, along with our moms, sat down with a student here for lunch and both ended up coming. It's crazy to think we met then, not sure if we would ever see each other again, and now here we are, junior year, and I consider her one of the coolest people ever.
  • No matter how much you may want to escape it, your home is your home. I was so excited to get out of California and explore something new, but I never thought about how much I would stand out at first. Being from California isn't the most common thing in Vermont, so a lot of people were curious as to why I was here. And still today, I get this question on my weekly tours, understandably so. I've come to realize how much I really do love my hometown, even though I wanted to escape it, it is also the one place that I know inside and out. There is something comforting about knowing so much about a place. So even if you think you'll never want to go back to your hometown, you'll realize that you have family, friends, and familiarity there.
  • Professors can be friends, mentors, and connections. Your professors are here because they actually really care. I didn't realize this at first. I'm typically a very shy student, I don't like to speak up much because I'm nervous I'll say the wrong thing or something stupid. But professors value discussion and participation, as I've noticed. And as you take more and more classes in your major, you will most likely repeat teachers. For me, this made me feel at ease because I knew the teacher and felt more comfortable about speaking up in class. I have found, after a few years, talking with them about advice for your assignments or jobs can open a whole new world. They have so much experience, if you show them you are open to listen and learn, they want to help guide you to your goal. So talk to them during their office hours, learn from them, and who knows, you may end up going to their house for dinner (as many classes do!).
  • You can do everything, but you also have to stay sane. I wanted to do it all, and starting off, I could. But with every year, I added more and more, so by the time I came into school this year, I was overwhelmed and bound to break at any moment. The things I loved to do caused me more stress than they did pleasure. That was the point that I realized I had to take a step back and think about what was most important and step down from what was too much. And know that it is ok to say you are too busy, it happens, and that is life. But know you may have the opportunity to pick it up later. The door isn't shut, it's left cracked open.
  • Your Myers-Briggs type will change. What I mean by that is your changes could actually be tracked. One thing I wish I did was take a test at the beginning of every semester or year. You can see how you've changed throughout your time in college. I took one my first year and had a very high extrovert score, but it has slowly gone down over the semesters. I think I had a fear of being left out so I always wanted to be around people. Now that I have a solid group of friends, I'm not so afraid that I'll be left out.  
  • You'll miss your parents/become more understanding of them. At the end of high school, I was so excited to be independent. But over my time away, I leaned how much I have in common with my mom and dad and how much I love spending time with them and value our daily routine. Whenever I'm overwhelmed with the fact that I have to start to be an adult, my mom is my go to person for counseling and telling me who to call. Sometimes, I just miss my parents because I love them so much! It was hard realizing I was missing events back home, like awards ceremonies or band performances of my little brother, but you get used to it and find another way to communicate. So keep up with the communication, your parents love to hear from you and you'll love it too.
Those are some of the main points that I'm reflecting on now, as I sit with Lily and Callie listening to music. Lily is typing a paper and Callie has a huge drawing sprawled across the table that she is working on for her class. This is exactly where I want to be, in a place I love, with amazing people.