Special Moments

Opportunities are a part of every day life.  No matter what the situation, you always have a choice, whether you realize it or not.  However, there are few moments in life in which you have the choice to participate in an event so amazing that you will not only never forget it, but that it will make you happy every time you think about it for the rest of your life.  Sometimes it is a job offer for that company you idolized as a young child.  Sometimes it is getting that new car that you have worked so hard to buy.  Often times, though, it is the simplicity of the events that makes them so special.  For me, attending my dad’s 50th birthday party was this amazingly simple situation.

Every so often, I drive back home to Southern California for a visit, a weekend away, or sometimes an event.  Over the weekend of September 11, my family had planned out a wonderful birthday celebration for my father, being that you only turn the big 5-0 once in a lifetime!  My mom and my aunt planned to take my dad to Disneyland for the day, but my father knew nothing of this plan.  Over the course of about 6 weeks, my mother, sister, aunt , uncle, grandmother, and I planned the execution of this party.

I left friday evening and drove to my aunt’s house across town, where I stayed the night.  The next day, my aunt, uncle, cousins, grandma and I all drove to Disneyland to surprise my dad.  We decided that it would be a bigger surprise if I met them inside, so I went into the park and waited in Town Hall for the rest of my family.  When they arrived, I walked up  to my dad, said happy birthday, and gave him a big hug.  He was so surprised and happy to see me there that he almost cried, a face filled with so much joy that I will never forget it and even remembering it now makes me smile.

Until around 2 p.m. our family wandered the park, gathered fastpasses, and enjoyed the many rides of the Happiest Place on Earth.  When 2-ish rolled around we found ourselves in New Orleans Square, meandering through (having just finished Pirates of the Carribean).  This is when the biggest suprise of all came into play: lunch at Club 33.

Most people will read that and think “What’s the big deal about that restaurant?”  Well, I’ll tell you!  It is called Club 33 because it is located at 33 Royal Street.  This restaurant was designed by Walt Disney back before his untimely death.  The design for this restaurant was to be exclusive only to a select few people of Walt’s choice.  It was attached to his own private office above Pirates of the Carribean so that he could entertain lunch guests amidst his work.  In the design of the rooms for the restaurant there were talking animals, using the technology similar to that in the Enchanted Tiki Room.

Also, it was designed to give the illusion of enchantment: in the chandaliers there are built-in microphones that were to be used so that no waiters would be seen until they were bringing food or beverages to the guests, seemingly as if they knew exactly what each person wanted!

Unfortunately, since Watergate this technology is not used, but is a mere memory of Walt and his passion for being at the forefront of the future.  There are a few other unfortuantes along with the fact that the technology is now for show, not use.  There is a waiting list of longer than 14 years to become a member.  Due to this fact, you need to know someone who has a membership in order to get a reservation in the first place.

Enough about the restaurant though.  The meal was incredible!  Being together with my family in such an incredible place was almost too much to bear, but I stuck in there.  🙂  Lunch took a total of almost 3 hours!  There was a seafood bar, a dessert bar, and then the main course, which consisted of items like Filet Minion, rack of lamb, or an apricot-glazed chicken breast.  I had the chicken breast and I have never tasted anything like it!  The only way to describe it was euphoric; I felt like I was floating on cloud nine after our meal.  Unfortunatly, none of the costumed cast members wandered through during our meal, an oddity in the restaurant where the characters usually love to hang out.

After lunch, we hung around in Disneyland for a while longer so that we could use our fastpasses.

When we had finally finished in Disneyland, we wandered over to Disney’s California Adventure.  We spent the remainder of the night over there.

We went on Soarin’ Over California, The Monster’s Inc. ride, Turtle Talk with Crush, California Screamin’, and the Hollywood Tower of Terror.  After all this was over, we were about to leave the park when I remembered that the new waterworks show, World of Color, had just started.  We went to that show and were left in awe at the sheer brilliance put into this incredible performance!  There were streams of fire, images of the movies that were matched with the songs playing, and lights and colors covering the entire spectrum!  It lasted almost half an hour, and at the end I was almost too stunned to leave the spot I had become rooted in.  Finally, I gathered the will to move and we all went home.

If I learned anything from this weekend it is that no matter what you do, make it worthwhile.  The littlest things like seeing your parents smile just by being there to see them are priceless and some day, you will be able to look back on them and smile yourself!  🙂

Easter Weekend

This past weekend, and many of you know, was Easter weekend for many religions.  That being so, my family was very glad to have me home to stick to the traditions we have had for this holiday for many years.  Sunday was the only day that I had family traditions to fulfill, so Saturday was left wide open.  After a looooong drive home on Friday night, I didn’t wake up until about noon on Saturday.  Right about that time, my lifelong friend gave me a phone call and asked what I was up to.  I ended up spending the rest of the afternoon with my three childhood friends.  That night I was still tired from the drive, so I just hung out until about 11 p.m. then passed out as soon as I got home.

The next morning, my family and I went to church with my family at 11 a.m., which was still way too early in the morning for me.  The service had a lot of singing and rejoicing, the perfect day for songs of that nature.  After the service was over, my sister and I went home for about 20 minutes before we had to meet up with our family and other relatives for Easter brunch.  We went to a fish restaraunt called the Market Broiler.

Sadly, I have never been a big fan of fish, but I decided to be daring and test out some new things.  I tried fried calamari, Thresher shark steak, and Mahi-Mahi.  The weirdest thing was, I enjoyed all of them! 

After we all had finished eating, we went over to my grandmother’s house to have some desert that one of my aunt’s had made.  On the drive over, my sister and I were stopped at a red light.  While sitting there waiting for our turn, we both felt the car start to rock back and forth.  Neither of us thought anything of it until it didn’t stop after about 5 seconds.  I rolled down my window and the guy in the car next to us yelled to me “It’s an earthquake man!”  When we arrived at out grandmother’s house a few minutes later, we turned on the news and saw that there had indeed been an earthquake in Mexicali, a city that was 19 miles southeast of Calexico, California which is a city right on the border to Mexico.  After watching the news for the rest of the afternoon, the final story was that the quake was a magnitude 7.2, which is enormous, and the quake lasted for nearly 3 minutes.  There were also at least two noticeably large aftershocks that came along with it.

The big yellow square in the middle is the one felt all across Southern California and even in Phoenix.

After the excitement and shock of the quake had died down a bit, my family proceeded to have an Easter egg hunt!  Both of my little cousins got the majority of the eggs (fast little buggers) and in the end, I had gathered enough candy to satisfy my quota for the day.


Finally, around 7 p.m. we headed home and I started getting my things ready for the next morning, since I would be driving back to Embry-Riddle.  After falling asleep later than planned and barely waking up in time to leave before traffic began to pile up, I made my escape from SoCal and so ended my wonderful weekend back home over Easter weekend!

Spring Break part 2

Now for the second part of my spring break!  After arriving home in Huntington Beach at around 3 a.m. my friends and I drug out bags inside and passed out.  We had wanted to go surfing around 6 a.m. that morning, but that plan definately fell through when we all woke up around noon.  Not wasting any more time in the day, we suited up and drove down to the beach for a few hours to try and get rid of our nasty goggle tans from the mountains.  Over the course of about 4 hours, my friends and I bodysurfed, bodyboarded, took naps, went back in the water, fell back asleep again, and got sunburnt.  Finally, it was too cold to be in the water, which was already frigid, so we headed back and warmed up in the jacquzzi at my house.

The rest of the night consisted of relaxing with the hopes of being awake at 6 a.m. Wednesday morning to go surfing.  However, we still did not wake up nearly early enough to go surfing.  Instead, we decided to go have some fun at an indoor rock wall!

None of us were very good, but we still had a blast until our fingers were just too sore to hold on to the holds.  After driving home, we decided to suit up and go walk around downtown since it was St. Patrick’s Day.  The Adams and I explored the shops and restaurants downtown for a few hours.  We finally wound up back at my house around 11:30 p.m. and went to bed, once again with the hopes of waking up for a surfing session at 6 a.m.

Thursday afternoon rolled in on us before we knew it, and we once again missed surfing in the morning.  The weather proved to be warm and sunny, like usual for socal, so we hit the beach for the afternoon.  The water was just as cold, but this time we had a surboard and skimboards with us, so we didn’t have to spend as much time in the water.  I taught both my friends how to skimboard, and now I know how funny I must have looked when I was first starting out!  While we were gone, my neighbor asked if I would want to go see Alice in Wonderland in Imax 3-D later that night.  We didn’t have any plans still, so it was decided that we would take him up on the offer.  The movie was great, and the Imax 3-D experience was phenomenal!

When Friday finally rolled around, we were trying to figure out what to do to pass the time.  We had been to the beach a few times, gone rock climbing, and gone hot tubbing, all of which were awesome.  Still trying to decide where to go, we decided to pull out some of the beach cruisers at my house and ride over to 7-11 and grab some slurpees.  Still not being able to find anything to do, we decided to drive up to UCLA and look around at what college life was like there.  After getting lost a couple of times, we finally found the heart of the campus and what a shock it was.  There were students left and right, shops, restaurants, bars; and that was just the campus village.  Not even a block away we discovered the residential area and Greek row.  What an experience it was to see huge two-story houses with greek letters worn proudly as we passed each residence!

We drove around in the neighborhood looking for a place to park until we finally found one.  After getting out, we set off for the Sigma Pi house, since I am a brother here at Embry-Riddle.  When we found it, it was a glorious sight.  Yes, it was somewhat dirty and unkempt, but it was the first real fraternity house I had seen and it belonged to my brothers!  We set off to the door and were met by a brother at the UCLA campus, who gladly let us in and gave us a quick tour of the house.  Unfortunately, most of the brothers had left earlier that day, because they had finished finals the day before.  Even so, the Adams and I mingled for a bit with the remaining brothers and just enjoyed hearing stories about living on campus in such a huge city and attending a large public school.

At about 1 a.m., we said our goodbyes and headed towards the village to check out the social life aspect of UCLA.  Unfortunately, In-n-Out was closed by the time we got there.  Luckily enough, Taco Bell was still open and thriving!  We ordered some food and since all the tables were taken, decided to eat outside and people watch for a bit.  It might not sound like fun, but it was a blast!  We all admitted that we felt like we had become part of the campus just by being there for a few hours.  When we got home around 3 a.m. we had to hit the hay a.s.a.p. because we had to be up and on the road by 8:45 later that morning for our last big adventure: Disneyland!!

Fortunately for us, we woke up on time for the first time in the week and got up to Disneyland at about 9:40 a.m.  My friend Josh was waiting for us to help us get in for the day, since he works there.  Being a Saturday, the park was starting to get busy fast, so we had to grab fastpasses for Space Mountain right away.  Also, one of the Adams had never been to Disneyland before, so we had to make sure and give him the full experience!  We went on the Autopia, the Astro Blasters (which I got a score in the 700,000 range on that day XD ), Star Tours (which we found out is closing in May or so to be remodeled and upgraded!), Space Mountain, Pirates of the Carribean, and the Winnie the Pooh ride.

After that, we decided to head over to California Adventure.  We hit up the Mission tortilla factory a few times for free snacks and the sourdough bakery for the same reason.  Then, we watched the Bug’s Life show, went on California Screamin, and ended with the rapid ride 3 times in a row.  Soaking wet and tired out from the long day, my friends and I went to McDonald’s and headed home.  Tired, but still functioning, we decided to drive down to San Diego and hang out with one of my friends who attends San Diego State University.  After getting down there, we found out that she couldn’t go out, so we were on our own.  We drove around and just explored the city for a bit until we were getting tired and needed to head home before we passed out.

Sunday morning rolled around and we woke up at around 9:30, so we decided to get one last day in at the beach before heading home to Embry-Riddle.  My sister wanted to tag along with us, so we took her surfboard and found a beach that had some waves, since the surf was pretty dead that day.  Also, the marine layer had hit hard the night before, so it was a pretty dreary looking day.  Regardless, we enjoyed just being at the beach again.

When lunch rolled around, we left the beach and went home to change because my family had invited us to go to Ruby’s on the Huntington Beach pier.  We all had a great time eating and talking, until the Adams and I needed to head home and pack up out stuff since we would be leaving for Embry-Riddle in only a couple hours.  It was a sad moment leaving home once again, but what was even harder was leaving the beach and Southern California in general.  Spring break had come and gone in the blink of an eye, but thanks to the memories of that week, we will remember it forever!

Spring Break: Part 1

Has anyone finished something big and just felt that sigh of relief shower over them?  If so, add a week of no school to that wonderful feeling!  Finally, after weeks of monotonous class and studying, the students of ERAU got their break.  I chose to go back to Southern California with my friends Adam and Adam.  The week was highly anticipated and none of us could wait to get on the road.

Our first stop for break was Mammoth Mountain for a weekend of snowboarding.  The drive was very daunting from Prescott to the mountain.  The drive took about 10 hours plus stopping time for gas and food.  Once we met up with my family in a small town right before the mountain, we traveled to the cabin and passed out for the night.

After a morning that came way too soon, we finally got up and ready to go.  There had been a storm during the night (and as we were arriving) and the mountain was coated with fresh layers of powder.  My friends and I decided to head straight to the top. 











While we were at the top, we saw and interesting sign.  The resort actually caused avalanches during the night with explosives so that people would not start them while riding the day after a fresh coat of powder had befallen the slopes.














After a day of crashes and great fun, we hauled ourselves back to the cabin, sore and ready for a good shower.  What we found instead was that the hot tub was open and we immediately chose to hit up that option.  While in the hot tub, we made an even better discovery: a sauna!  After sitting in the hot tub for a while, we turned up the sauna and relaxed as we dried off.

The next morning proved to be just as difficult to wake up.  After much prodding and constant annoyance, we gathered ourselves and got ready for another day of shredding.  The mountain was just as beautiful as it had been the day before, but this time, we decided to try out the slopes on the back side.  Having been to the mountain countless times since I was young and having never gone on the back side, this was an exciting new experience for us all!  The snow was still fresh on the backside, and the trails were amazing.  The tough part, however, was that there was only one way back to the front of the mountain and we needed to go to the complete other side for lunch in one hour’s time.  After many fast runs and slow chairlifts, we finally made it back in time for lunch.

The rest of the day proved to be very difficult, because one of the Adams got lost on the mountain by taking one wrong trail, believing that the other Adam and I had gone that way.  Instead of waiting around for a while to let him catch up, we went back up to the top of the mountain and decided to try a trail that was extremely nerve racking.  This trail went along the ridge of the mountain, stretching only 3 meters wide at some points and dropping off vertically into rocky chutes.













Finally, we made it to the end of the ridge and it was time to shoot down and dodge various trees and obstacles until we reached the main runs.  On our way down, Adam and I split up because it proved too difficult to stay together in the trees.  He made it down no problem.  I, however, got stuck in the heavy powder amongst the trees and had to hike over a quarter of a mile in all my snowboarding gear and with my board to reach the slopes once more.  After getting down to the bottom of the mountain, Adam and I finally realized that we did not know where our other Adam had gone.  After freaking out and assuming the worst for about 15 minutes, we saw him walking towards the car.  Needless to say, I was exhausted that night.

Finally, our last day had come upon us.  We woke up and hit the mountain for the third day.  We decided to explore some of the runs that we hadn’t yet been on around the mountain, since we were all getting pretty sore by that point.  During out adventure, we came across something none of us had ever expected to see: two girls riding on the mountain in bikinis! The three of us could not believe our eyes.  Never in our talk about the moutain did any of us even consider that there would be girls there wearing beach outfits!  After seeing that, the rest of the day seemed so obsolete that we couldn’t help but hope to see them again.

Finally, the weekend had come to an end and we had to make the drive to Huntington Beach.  Thankfully, my dad had stayed and was the one driving us home.  My friends and I just slept for the drive.  So ends part one of my spring break adventure.  I’ll be back with more adventures soon!

late winter break

After more than a month, I am finally getting back into the grove of the semester and have found some time for a nice blogging sesh  🙂  Thinking back, the winter break seems like it was forever ago!  I was reminiscing about hanging out with friends and wearing summer clothes during the winter back home in SoCal when I decided to share it with you guys instead of hording it all!   The last time I shared the story of a great Thanksgiving and my Amish beard.  This time, it seems fitting to share about Christmas, my shenanigans over break, and the best day of the year: New Year’s Eve. 

This year, for the first time, I did not want anything for Christmas.  My parents kept bugging me and asking me over and over what I wanted, but I just did not have anything that I really needed.  Of course, WANTING something is a different story, but my parents (like most parents of teenagers) just would not lighten up to the idea of buying me a Corvette.  🙁  Sad, I know, but life goes on.  Due to my desire for gifts that are far out of the price range of gifts that any teenager should receive, my parents and I could not come to a conclusion on what I would get for Christmas until about a week before the 25th.  I was looking at my old ski/snowboarding gear since I was going to be using it when we traveled up to Mammoth mountain later over break.  When I tried it on, I found that it was far too small for my size.  Apparently I have grown since freshman year of high school!  Who would’ve guessed…

Anyways, I asked my parents if a whole new outfit would be within their price range for the holidays.  When they said yes, I immediately got to work.  I looked at all the deals at stores and online.  I must have looked through at least 2000 jackets before I found a couple that I liked.  After narrowing it down to two different sets of jacket/pants, I finally decided on a white and black colored outfit.  However, no matter how hard I looked, my size was sold out.  I told myself that the green outfit was just as good, and settled on getting that one.








Christmas day was a weird one for my family.  I could not sleep the night before, and ended up sleeping in until around 3 pm, when my family told me we were going to dinner with my aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents in half an hour.  After spending almost 8 hours with family, my parents, sister and I arrived home.  We started opening presents just before midnight.

When I opened my presents on Christmas night, I couldn’t help but smile as I pulled my new snowboarding outfit out of the boxes.  However, my parents threw me for a loop.  I had opened all of the boxes that had my outfit inside of them, but I still had a few more presents to open.  When I opened the first one, I was shocked to see the pants of the other outfit that I had seen with my own eyes to be sold out.  I ripped through the last two or so boxes and minutes later, I had the entire “sold out” outfit strewn out in front of me.  I simply could not believe my eyes.  I was speechless, and according to my parents I had a look on my face that was so priceless that it could only be called the look of “a kid on Christmas morning”.  If I had to guess, my expression probably looked like this:







On a different note, my uncle asked me if I could help him with his work over break.  He makes a living cleaning fish tanks, and a nice living at that.  It is amazing how much people will pay for others to clean up after them (or their pets).  Anyways, our job over the break was to remove all of the tanks in every Rubio’s grill in Southern California (except for one).  By the time he asked if I would be interested in helping him, there were only 3 or 4 tanks left to remove.  Each tank held about 100 gallons of water and it took us about 2 hours to disassemble all of the parts and get it on the truck to move.  It was a fun job and it got me up out of bed most days, something I was much too lazy to do on my own.  🙂

Now I know you have had the question “Why is New Year’s Eve the best day of the year?” stuck in your minds for a while now.  The answer: December 31 is my birthday, thats why!  This year for my birthday, I decided to just have a few friends come over and we would go to an arcade called Nickel, Nickel!  It is an arcade where you pay a small fee to get in, and all the games take nickels instead of tokens or quarters.  After hanging out at the arcade for about 3 hours, my friends and I headed back to my house for some epic NES battles and rice crispy treats!











After we finished bringing in the New Year with huge smiles and joyous attitudes:










My friends and I decided to go sit in the jacquzzi for a while.  It was so cool that night that the steam just made it nearly impossible to see us  🙂










The last part of my vacation was my trip to Mammoth Mountain.  It is an 8 hour drive from the beach cities, so after the long trek, my family arrived at our temporary home.  The snow was so-so, but it was still a ton of fun just to get out on the mountain and ride.  I also got to try out my new gear, and it was extremely comfortable so the trip was a complete success!  😀










it’s been a while…

It’s been months since I have had much time to get back into my blogs.  College is wonderful for showing you what you need to learn and what skills to master for the real world.  So far, I have realized that I need much better time management skills.  I need to learn that I can waste energy focusing on things that are not important in the immediate scheme of things.  After getting all settled in at home and saying hi to everyone I left here in Southern California, I am ready to blog once more!

So many things have happened since September.  I audited a class, I made it into a Fraternity, I grew a massive beard, etc.  All of this is yet to come  🙂  Let’s start with the audited class.  Back in the middle of October, both my classes and my pledging period were in full motion.  It was then that I really saw how bad my time management skills were.  I was beginning to lose precious hours of sleep to stay up and to my stockpile of homework (not the Fraternity’s fault, mine for not using my time wisely) until one day in class, my Microeconomics teacher offered the class a solution: auditing courses.  I had honestly never heard of this option before, but it sounded like an angel had just saved me from failing a course.  Auditing, for those of you who don’t know, is when you opt to take the course, but get no credit for it.  It is not the same as dropping the course, however, because you still go to class and listen/take notes (or whatever you do in class).  I chose to take the credit loss and audit my Microeconomics class, because it was my lowest grade at the time.  This choice was difficult at first, because I did not want everyone to think I was a quitter and because I was afraid I would think about myself as a quitter, but I can honestly look back now and say it was one of the wisest decisions I made for my classes this semester.  I was able to almost every class of the semester, so I have already gathered some knowledge about the course.  Now, all I have to do is take it again and I will begin to master the course content this second time around.  If I can make a suggestion to every student who just has a schedule that is too full, because we all overload ourselves sometimes, auditing is a great way to “preview” a course if you honestly want to take it, but simply don’t have the time yet for the entire class’ workload.

After auditing, my next big thing was Sigma Pi.  After eight weeks of devotion, I was finally initiated into this amazing brotherhood that I am sure will be one of the greatest decisions of my life.  My brothers have become my extended family since I have left home for Embry-Riddle.  I will always be able to catch up with them and have a great time, even if we have not spoken in years.  To everyone who has the time and willpower, find a brotherhood or sisterhood.  It will change your life for the better.

After becoming a brother of Sigma Pi, I was a little less restricted on time.  This made it easier to make up some of the work I had fallen behind on.  Also, by this time it was November.  I have never heard of this tradition before, but apparently it was “No Shave November”.  I decided that this was a great idea, and instead of shaving, I just began to watch in awe as my face transformed into something new and unusual to me.  By the time Thanksgiving rolled around at the end of the month, my beard was in full bloom.  It was funny watching people’s reactions when they saw me looking so different from what they remembered.

So now we arrive at Thanksgiving day.  Sleep in till about 2 p.m., wake up and rush to get ready because we are supposed to eat dinner at 4 p.m.  For a long time, my family has had two Thanksgivings, one at our house with my mom’s family and one at my Aunt and Uncle’s house across town with my dad’s family.  This year, we only went to eat with my dad’s side of the family, because my mom’s family couldn’t make it.  We were still there before dinner started, so my mom took a few pictures.


After socializing and finishing up the food preparations, it was time to feast!  I ate and ate and ate until I pretty much passed out on the couch in the living room. I woke up twice, once to say goodbye to some of my family that was leaving, and once to leave with my family.  My mom chose to take a picture of my while I was sleeping, but I’m not sure when…

After Thanksgiving, it was time to shave the beast.  November had come to an end and I was more than happy to get rid of my beard.  I was so excited, in fact, that I shaved Thanksgiving night.  Due to the fact that my beard was almost an inch long, I had to use hair clippers to shave it off.

This would be my hair after it left my face haha.  I also got a haircut, since I hadn’t done that in over a month as well.  If that had been in the dustpan as well, it would have been completely full!

The next major speedbump I hit came on Sunday, when I was coming back to school to finish up the semester.  I had a flight on Great Lakes straight into Prescott.  The only problem was this: I was on an overbooked flight and guess who the last passenger to check in was? Yup, you got it right, I was the 20th person on a 19 seat flight.  After sitting around for over an hour waiting to figure out if I could get on another flight, I got put on a flight to Phoenix through Continental Airlines.  Instead of being back at school at around 1 p.m. I arrived in phoenix at 2:40-ish and had a 2 hour drive back to Prescott.  After my long day, I went back to my room and crashed for the night.

After making it through Thanksgiving, it was a smooth two weeks until the semester was finally through: NOT!  In the last two weeks of the semester, I was busy cramming for finals and doing homework.  I didn’t see some of my best friends for days at a time because I was always busy doing something.  Those last two weeks were quite dull and I am sure most of my friends know exactly what I was doing until the snowstorm hit.  I have never been in a storm as violent and hectic as this storm had been.  Lightpoles outside kept going out and turning back on in the wind, which was blowing at about 80 miles per hour according to one of my friends.  I was trying to sleep during the storm, but when it started to snow EVERYONE in my hall and the other halls were running around freaking out at the snow, slamming doors, etc. and I was definately not able to go to sleep…so, I ended up sitting out in the lounge with my friends until it was just me, my roomate, and one other dormie.  When it was about 5:30 a.m., we looked outside and decided it was the perfect time to go out and take some pictures of the snow before anyone messed it up the next morning.  After gearing up in warm clothes, we went outside and got a picture by my new powder coated car.

It was while we were taking pictures that we decided it would be fun to try and ride down the hill in the parking lot in the snow.  We all chose different modes of transportation: snowboard, longboard, and scooter.

We didn’t make it very far before deciding that the only good mode of transportation was the scooter, so we went back to the room and got two more scooters.  We rode down to the library, walked back up to our hall, rode all the way to the student union (best hill by far), walked to AC-1, made snow angels, rode down to the fields and towards the gym, walked up to mingus, and rode back to our hall.  It was one of the best times I have had in years and I will never forget it.

So yeah, that is where I’ve been these past few months.  I hope everyone did great on their finals and congratulations to us all for making it through a semester!  See you all next January!

my classes so far

Hey everyone.  I was sitting around thinking and I realized that I have not talked much about my classes here at Embry!  It all started the first week here that my schedule began to take shape.  I had signed up to take four classes: Psychology, Microeconomics, Chinese I, and GSIS 100.  The weekend before classes began I had the opportunity to meet Diane Kelm, who was awesome at helping me figure out my classes and add one more for the semester.  I decided to add Dr. Bloom’s Personality and Profiling course.

After being in class for about three days, I realized that my schedule had a few flaws.  First of all, I had four classes on Monday and Wednesday, only one class on Tuesday and Thursday, and three on Friday.  Having four classes was not my first preference, but I knew if I had to, I could tough through it.  My second problem was the fact that on Tuesday and Thursday, I did not have class until 1:25 p.m.!  If I kept this class as my only class on those days, I knew I would just waste all of that time sleeping and I would not be able to get any productive work done.  My last issue was that on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday my first class was at 8 a.m.  I was not ready for this and by Wednesday morning, I was already contemplating skipping classes.  I drug myself out of bed and attended, but I knew that something needed to be changed.

I went to talk to my good friend Diane once more about my feelings of my schedule.  I explained to her that I was having trouble with such a lop-sided schedule and I wanted to know if I could change it around.  My first choice was to drop my 8 a.m. class.  When I brought this up, I had to immediately defend myself against being seen as just a lazy freshman.  I told Diane that I wanted to drop one of my classes off of the four-day schedule and add a new class on Tuesday/Thursday to make up for it.  My justification for dropping the 8 a.m. class was that I needed psychology because I am considering it as a minor, I had taken microeconomics just the previous semester at high school, and I needed to start Chinese a.s.a.p. because I wanted to take as many years of it as I could.  This left the 8 a.m. class as the odd-man-out, and so it was dropped.

After contemplating on all of the other classes I could be taking on Tuesday and Thursday (including English, management, history, and biology) I decided to take English because I had also just taken an AP English course at high school the previous year.  And so my schedule was saved!  I now had 3 classes on Monday/Wednesday and 2 on Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday!

recent events

     Wow, it has been a while since I’ve posted here!  My life has been pretty so-so since I pledged to the Sigma Pi fraternity here on campus last weekend.  I was so excited when I knew I was in!  Being accepted to pledge for Sigma Pi was one of the best things that has happened thus far here at Embry-Riddle.  That happened last Friday.  After my pledging was over I had to grab my bags and head out to California for a fun weekend in the sun!  During this six hour trek, we had to stop once for gas out by Lake Havasu.  The time we stopped was 1:30 a.m. and the temperature was an outrageous 89 degrees!!!!!







It was so weird being in that heat in the middle of the night!  Anyways, we got gas and kept on going towards our destination: Huntington Beach, California!

We finally arrived at my home at around 4:30 a.m. and immediately crashed for the rest of the morning.  We awoke on Saturday around 1 p.m. and decided that it would be fun to go up to 6 Flags magic mountain.  After a two hour drive, we arrived at 6 Flags in Valencia, California.  We went on X2, Terminator Salvation, and more of the insanely awesome rides they have there! As we were leaving the park, we saw Sylvester the cat and Mr. Six Flags do the dance from the commercial and we knew that we needed some pictures!











We left the park around dinner time and met up with some friends for dinner and then went to watch a scary movie at one of their houses.  We watched The Last House on the Left, a movie which I would strongly deter anyone from viewing simply because it is a HUMOUGOUS waste of time!  The plot develops more slowly than a snail crawls and it is not scary, just kind of gory.  We left after seeing the movie and drove back to Huntington Beach.

The next day (Sunday) my dad took my two friends and I out for philly cheese steaks.  In my opinion, the resturant we ate at makes the most authentic Philadelphia cheese steaks outside of the city itself.  They get all of their ingredients from Philadelphia, the only thing missing is a location in the city!  The sandwiches were delectable, but sadly, they disappeared all to quickly.  We all went back to my house and watched Sunday football until it was finally time for us to start our trek back to campus.  After being bombarded by family hugs and kisses (not to mention bags of food and drinks for the road) we were off to Embry once again!

Sigma Pi Forever

Anyone else going Greek?  I never thought I would, but low and behold I am!  All throughout high school I always told myself that I would not go Greek because they were all just stupid party boys that did not care about their education. 

Last year at the student preview day I got to see the clubs that were here at Embry-Riddle and I was so excited to see what I could start doing this year!  Finally, after going around and talking to clubs like Mixed Martial Arts, Mile High Airsoft, and the Anime club, I realized that there were a few tables left: the Greek tables.  I was at the event with my dad and I just did not know what to do because there was really no way around except to go past them, so I hid behind my dad and told him to walk towards the door so the Greek guys could not talk to me.  We started walking and all was going well.  Just before we got to the stairs heading to the doors, the worst thing I could imagine happened: one of the guys actually came over and started talking to me.  At first I was scared, but I pulled myself together and introduced myself, praying that this encounter would be quick and painless.  Quite the opposite.  My dad walked over to the table and started talking to the rest of the guys from the fraternity.  I did not know who they were but all I remember was seeing the letters for their “cult” as I called it back then.








After talking to them for what felt like forever, my dad finally seemed to be satisfied and we said goodbye and left the club fair.  I remember telling my dad on the way to the car that I hoped I never got involved in a fraternity because all of those guys looked so stupid like they were only in college to party and I was going for my education.  He told me to just wait and see, claiming I might end up changing my mind.

When I arrived at Embry-Riddle, the first night of staying in the dorms was crazy!  All of my suite mates were getting to know each other and having a great time playing poker.  Randomly, someone knocked on our door and two older students asked if we wanted some pizza.  We invited them in and introduced ourselves.  They then invited us to go hang out with them and play some poker with their friends.  Only a few of us decided to go, myself being one of them.  When we got to the house, I was looking around and on the walls I saw a some picture frames with a bunch of students’ pictures on them.  When I got a closer look, I saw that I was not just hanging out with some older students, I was hanging out with some guys in a fraternity!  Not really thinking anything of it, I just went on to play poker and get to know the older guys.  During the game, one of the fraternity guys invited us younger guys to hang out with them the upcoming weekend to get to know us better.  Before I knew it, I was bonding with all of these really cool older guys that were not only good students (they had told me so themselves)  but normal college students that went out and did things like brothers.

Over the weekend, the older guys introduced us younger guys to more of their “brothers” and it was when I met the last of the brothers that I finally put two and two together: these fraternity guys were the ones at the table I had talked to a few months prior!  I could not believe my eyes when I started to recognize them and I was appalled that I had talked them down so much during the schoolyear because these guys were like mentors to me at this point!  I began to freak out and all of them looked worried until I explained that I met them all at preview day.  They laughed and some of them remembered me and the day went on.

Over my first few weeks here at Embry, I have been spending time and bonding with these great guys from Sigma Pi (I asked what the symbols meant at one point).  We have been cliff diving, had a Bar-B-que at HAAS, and just hanging out together when there was nothing to do on campus.  A few days ago, there was an information meeting for the fraternity and I attended.  At the meeting, the members talked about what they did as a brotherhood and gave some testimonials about their first few weeks as freshmen on campus.  They also told us that the next night they would be holding interviews for potential brothers.

The night of the interview I wanted to impress, but at the same time I wanted to let the guys from Sigma Pi know that I wanted to have fun at the same time.  When choosing my attire, I went with a tuxedo!













I was just trying to have some fun and go with a James Bond look, but I just did not seem to capture it…oh well!  I went to the meeting and it was about the equivalent of a job interview (minus the resume).  It only lasted about 10 minutes and I was finished.  I went back to my room to wait for 7 p.m. on Friday (today) night when I will hopefully be accepted into this new brotherhood!  Wish me luck!!!

Scary movie nights

So I would venture to say that I am not the only person that is afraid of scary movies.  I do not mean that they creep me out or give me the shivers, I mean scare the living daylights out of me to the point where I cannot sleep that night.  Unfortunately for me, I cannot get enough of the adrenaline rush that will imminently come along with it!  This past week I saw my first horror flicks, the newer Friday the 13th and The Haunting in Connecticut.  Here are the pictures I have from my experience.








The worst part of it all was that everyone but my friend Noah and I were not scared, but found their enjoyment from playing tricks on us and laughing at us when the scary parts showed up on the films.









As you can cleary see, my couchmates are laughing at what just happened because I am sitting there scared to look at the screen.  );








The worst prank made Noah hide under the sink and made me curl up in the fetal position.  Even though my friends can be quite cruel when it comes to pulling these pranks on us, I know that I will keep watching because as scary as they are, that adrenaline rush is just too exhilarating to pass up!