2012 Year in Review – December

Finally made it to the last post of the series! I hope you’ve enjoyed re-living 2012 with me. Personally, it was a really solid year. I felt successful in my work at City Year, made leaps forward towards finishing my Master’s degree, and made a lot of awesome memories with friends both new and old.

As I look forward to the new year, there is a lot I want to accomplish both personally and professionally. I truly believe that 2013 is going to be a formative year for me and I’m looking forward to what it will hold.

But before I get too ahead of myself, here is how I finished out 2012…

December is chock full of holiday celebrations. A tradition I have had the pleasure of becoming a part of is the PIC Party. Essentially, PIC throws a baller holiday party and we somehow get invited. I’m talking 13 different passed apps, a flatbread pizza station, and oh yeah – OPEN BAR. This party is incredible.

After the PIC Party, my roommates and I hosted our second holiday party together. This year, people actually showed up! Katrina did a great job of decorating the apartment, and they both made really awesome food/drinks. It was definitely a fun night.

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SantaCon is quickly becoming my favorite event in Boston – surpassing St. Patrick’s Day and Halloween (which if you know me, you know I LOVE both of those holidays). I dressed up as Ralphie from A Christmas Story which I thought more people would understand, but most people thought I was Piglet (WTF) or the Easter Bunny. Thankfully, the people who got it thought it was super awesome and I was able to be condescending towards the people who just didn’t get it.


Of course December means going home for the holidays. I had a really great time spending time with both sides of my family – especially our annual Christmas Eve party that we now have at my Uncle Bob and Aunt Jen’s. It’s definitely an event that I look forward to during the holiday season!

While home, I also had the opportunity to hang out with my friends. One of the highlights was going to the Genesee Brewery with Bob and his girlfriend and then getting drinks with Joe and Kurt afterwards on Monroe ave. I’m thankful that I still have good relationships with my high school friends – they were there for me during my formative years and it is awesome to be able to go home and pick up where we left off.

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I had an incredible New Year’s this year! I went to Chicago with a great group of people from across the City Year network. The weekend was full of laughter, brunch, pizza, dancing, and celebrating. Definitely the perfect way to bring in the New Year!

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Other highlights included:

  • Book Club at Deluxe Cafe with co-workers – great conversations about what people love to read
  • Going out after the last class of the semester with grad school friends – The Littlest Bar is awesome and I will definitely plan a triumphant return to Dumpling Cafe
  • Finally making it to Bleacher Bar to catch a Bill’s game
  • Private Sam Adams Tour/City Year Holiday Party
  • Skipping my flight and going to Syracuse instead to hang out with Andy and Erica

2012 Year in Review – April

My roommates and I hosted an Easter brunch for all of the misfit adults who couldn’t/didn’t go home for the holiday. My roommate Katrina always does a great job planning these kinds of things – lots of great decorations, food, and fun Easter activities. Probably one of my favorite Easter celebrations to date! (And a big thank you to Mama Zinger for sending really cute Easter baskets!)

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In mid-April I had the opportunity to go back to St. John Fisher College for the Cardinal Courier 10 Year Anniversary. (For those of you who don’t know, I was involved in the paper all four years of college – and served as the Editor-in-Chief my spring semester senior year). It was a really bittersweet weekend. I was happy to be in town to see everyone – I had the opportunity to sit on a career panel, attend a networking breakfast, and see one of my favorite professors “Doc” (aka Jim Seward) be inducted into the hall of fame.

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On the flip side, it was sad because the old Courier office was no longer and Steve Boerner, who had been the adviser for the majority of my time with the paper, announced he was leaving Fisher. While I was really bummed about that, it made me realize just how lucky I was to be able to work on the paper under his leadership. Steve is a truly incredible person and he made a pretty big impact on me both as a person and as a professional. Thanks for everything, Steve!

Other highlights included:

  • Going to my first Red Sox game
  • Seeing Portugal. The Man and The Lonely Trees at the House of Blues
  • Indoor soccer playoffs with my co-ed team – we came in second!


Five things Friday

1. Sons of Anarchy

Fun fact, the actor who plays Jax is actually British! It's like a hotter, more bad ass House!

If you haven’t seen this TV show yet, you totally need to. It is about a motorcycle club based in a fictional town in Northern California called Charming. It focuses on the main character, Jax Teller, who is the Vice President of the club. Essentially, it is about how he grapples with still being a part of the club even though it is heading in a direction he doesn’t think is right.

Sons of Anarchy is the highest rated show in FX history, which has aired some other really awesome shows such as Nip/Tuck, Its Always Sunny in Philadelphia and Lie to Me. You can catch seasons 1-2 streaming on Netflix. Totally worth checking it out.

2. Violence escalating in San Jose

San Jose, CA is known as one of the safest large cities in the country… or at least it used to be. This year so far, we’ve already doubled the murder rate in San Jose compared to last year. And with police officer layoffs looming, it can’t mean good things.

Most recently, there was a murder-suicide in a San Jose State University parking garage that took place pretty close to my apartment that left three people dead. In what looks like a suspected love triangle, a man killed his wife and one of her fellow students as they sat in a car. Check out this article for more details.

3. GOOD is hiring

I’ve talked about plenty of times on my blog. They are pretty much the epitome of what I love about social media. They recently announced that they are hiring (one of the positions is a social media manager job… hello, my dream!) But since I’m going to grad school and am relocating to Boston, MA, those dreams will have to be put on hold for now.

As for my friends living in LA and NYC, you should check out their postings and see if anything catches your eye.

4. Rochester area brain drain

New demographic data from the U.S. Census Bureau showed what is a surprise to, well no one – young people are leaving the Rochester, NY area.

It is unfortunate since Rochester is a pretty cool city. I seriously considered going back there after I was done with City Year San Jose/Silicon Valley, but the job market kept me from going back despite getting accepted into RIT (was even offered a damn good scholarship).

When the admissions person asked me why I was turning them down, I had to answer honestly: there are no opportunities for me there. It is sad for me because I don’t think I will ever be able to live there and pursue a successful career in my chosen field. Maybe one day…

5. Religion is human nature, study claims

A recent project that incorporated 40 different studies from all over the world is reporting that religion is instinctive for humans. As someone who is re-exploring the idea of faith, this is a pretty interesting concept… especially since I have been reading studies on how organized religion is depleting around the world.

According to Oxford University professor Roger Trigg (who led the study): “We tend to see purpose in the world. We see agency. We think that something is there even if you can’t see it. … All this tends to build up to a religious way of thinking.”

What are your thoughts? Are we predisposed to religiosity from birth? Is organized religion on the decline?

Get to know me March Mondays: I am From

Since I love alliteration almost as much as I love myself, I decided to do a monthlong weekly series where I will give you a chance to get to know me better. I’ll also be doing one of those 30 day challenges over on my Stuck in the Middle Tumblr if once a week of me writing about myself just isn’t enough for you.

Another cool exercise that we do in City Year to help us get to know one another is called “I am From” poetry. I have done this with Charlie Rose, the Dean of City Year, and the entire San Jose corps and staff for the past two years.

The premise is simple. Basically you take five different categories and write down 4-6 lines that match up under that category. It doesn’t have to rhyme, it just has to be true for you.

I am from (sights, sounds and smells)

Roads with no lines


12 ft tall Christmas trees stapled to the wall

Deer dashing out of the driveway

Kodak film in the fridge

Fresh cut grass

I am from (familiar foods)

Dad’s chili on football Sundays

Zweigle’s white hots

Garbage plates at 2 am

Chocolate nut clusters for the neighbors

Shrimp cocktail on Christmas eve

I am from (familiar phrases)

God damn Cowboys!

Don’t shoot from there!

Yeah, but will she do this well in college?


They didn’t even invite us, those bastards!

Hey ugly…. Hey uglier than me.

I am from (music from your childhood)

Paul Simon

REO Speedwagon

Billy Joel

Green Day

Lynyrd Skynyrd


I am from (ancestors)

The domestically abused

The Catholic church

The Civically engaged

Dog lovers

Hard workers

So, where are you from?