Thursday, May 23, 2013

The Final Week

This week I had 4 finals and a paper standing between me and summer vacation. 

Last week was “dead week”, the last week of classes before finals, and in general a lot stressed out people and never ending amount of work to get done. Around this time it is not uncommon to find people studying or sleeping in the weirdest places. The library is open 24/7 and there are yummy snacks every night at 11pm!

17th of May is the Norwegian Constitution day! The Scandinavian students, students studying Norwegian and many of the schools staff and former students attended a Norwegian breakfast with speeches. Later that day many students made they way to Ballard, Seattle for the 17th of May Parade! There were so many people at the parade and I was proud to be walking with such a great group of PLU students! And I finally got some Solo (norwegian soda)! It was so good! :D

To get through these weeks you may have to lock yourself in the library for a while, but don’t forget to have some fun in between. Let your brain relax every couple of hours. As my German professor would say: “ Kein Stress!” Don’t stress, you can do it! 

Other than the overbearing amount of work, I actually really enjoy these weeks because people are so understanding of each other. For example you can go to the library looking like a hobo and everybody understands; its dead week and you have other things to worry about.

There are also a lot of events that you can go to as a study break or for stress relief.
My dorm, Tingelstad for example, brought in therapy dogs during dead week for all the stressed students to cuddle and play with. There were so many types of dogs, all different sizes and degree of fuzziness. It was really relaxing and helped me forget about the overbearing amount of work that I had to do for a little while. I have really been missing my dog back home in Norway and this event made me miss her even more.
Jess and Sophie!
Bruiser :)

Packing up to go home has been quite a struggle. I don’t understand how I have managed to accumulate this much stuff on such a short time and I came here with so little. How did this happen?! The walls look so bare now with all my pictures taken down and somehow I have managed to fit most of it into a few boxes and bins. You can store a little in the dorms over the summer which is very helpful. The rest is going to go into storage. Many people have offered to store stuff for me as well over the summer which is really nice of them! :)
My room looks so different! Looks tiny without all my decorations!!
I am very excited to be going back to Norway this summer. It has been 329 days since i got on the plan PLU-bound! I am definitely ready to see my family, friends and old classmates again! I have missed them a lot! I have also missed some of the food from home! When people came to visit me I would ask them to bring me back my favorite Norwegian snacks :)

I am excited to come back next semester to see all of the awesome people I have met here again. After a year I feel like I know the school so well and have become very comfortable here. I definitely consider PLU one of my many home-away-from-homes.
Here are some pictures from my first year at PLU! 
Outdoor Movie Night!
2013 Color Run

Spring Soiree - Swing Dance Club 

Tingelstad goes to the Mariners Game!

<3 Madeleine

Saturday, May 18, 2013

A random post to conclude my spring semester

Dear Friends,

End of semester! Hurray~ It means no more papers and exams. Summer break is time when we get rest and fully charged for the brand new academic year. I am looking forward to it, especially when I am not going back to China. Then it leaves me to plan my summer ON MY OWN! I am so excited!

Before I got too excited, I wanted to write you about what I have been doing since my last blog.

As much as I wanted to elope with an UFO to escape from my religion class, I couldn't. So I accepted that I will have to stick around until I get a grade. Though please don't get me wrong. Despite the fact that medieval Christianity is too foreign to understand, I love the professor. She is so funny! One day she reluctantly promised the class that we would have an outdoor sunny class, so she showed up with a huge umbrella the next day morning. Doesn't she look like Mary Poppins when her little body is under that bow covered thingy?
As a class, we also went to visit an PLU students' "sacred" site, Gum Tree. It is a popular meeting place for students as its location connects the lower campus to the upper campus. We then chewed gum together and formed a giant cross on the tree trunk... our saliva met on the tree trunk, yuk! Haha I didn't mean to disgust you.

I was also working on planning an admission event opened to international students who attend various colleges in the area. We invited them to come and experience life at PLU. It was fortunate that the day turned out to be very beautiful. The campus was lively because most of our lutes were out playing and enjoying the sun. I was glad that the event went very well, and the students enjoyed their stay.

Commercial break. Goofy time :))

To be honest, I personally don't like to bowl, but it was so nice to be able to rest a little and hang out with my lovely roommates on a Friday night.

And today, the last day before our final's week, I decided to take it easy and went to support my friend for her capstone. I am so proud of her.

I apologize for this random, disorganized blog post. My brain does not function very well lately. Hope this letter finds you well. Good luck with your finals if you have any, or enjoy your weekend if you don't.

Love always,


Friday, May 10, 2013

Did you miss our Visit Day?

Hello all,

So last Saturday, we invited a couple of students from Community Colleges in the area to visit PLU.

Everyone went on a tour, had dinner together and we went to PLUtonic and HERmonic concert together.

Then we all went to Hong Hall to have ice cream and talk. Everyone had a chance to ask questions about PLU and experienced what life at PLU is all about.

I am sorry if you missed the visit for this year. However, we will have another one in the Fall of 2013 for you. Check out our Facebook page and our official Admission website for more information.

Here are some photos from the concert (photo credit: John Froschauer)

Sunday, May 5, 2013

PLU during the Spring/ Life of a Music Minor

PLU During the Spring:

Things to look forward to in the Pacific Northwest once May comes around: sunshine. After seeing months of rainy days, the sun becomes a blessing. Flowers start to bloom, the world seem brighter, and students sit outside doing homework, eating lunch, or just relaxing with friends. It's amazing how much the beatiful weather here becomes a motivator to appreciate living on campus. As I promised in my last post, here are some pictures of PLU during the spring:

Studying outside during Writing 101

Life of a Music Minor (Concert/Juries):

The end of the semester is a really busy time for music students; however, it is also the most exciting time of the semester as well. Studio classes and ensembles are concluded with concerts. On April 20th, the PLU saxophone studio group had a combined concert with the UPS (University of Puget Sound) saxophone players. In this concert, several quartets from both schools played and the concert ended with a combined PLU/UPS group. This was a really good experience for me personally, since I got meet other saxophone players who attend a different university. Furthermore, it was a good experience for me as a music student. Because of the busy schedule of the UPS students, we rehearsed as a whole group on the day of the concert for the first time- 3 hours before the concert began. For us to all be able to play well, we needed to be flexible with the changes made in the music; a necessary skill for musicians. In the end, the concert was a success!
Photo taken by Erik Steigner

Music juries are also coming up! You don't know what juries are? Let me explain. Music students who take lessons usually get to experience playing a variety of music. However, we concentrate on one peice to play for the end of the semester, to show a jury (usually a group of three music faculty members) how much we have improved and recieve feedback on our playing. Last semester I played Sonata for Tenor Saxophone and Pinao by William Hartley, a modern American peice. My choice for this semester is completely different. I am planning to play Viola da Gamba by J.S. Bach, which is transcibed from a peice that is supposed to be played by viola. I am enjoying the opportunities am I recieving in my lessons to play different types of music, and I am excited for what the future is going to bring!

Lots of Love,