being back in Cinci
Sunday: The transition from Maranatha to work and Navigators stuff was rough—things went from 60 to 100 mph in no time flat. I was living at Emily and Aaron's house all week because my sublet hadn't moved out yet. The commute to campus only complicated things. The day after we drove back from Michigan was the Navs Welcome Back picnic for all the leaders. I handed out the t-shirts that Lizz thought up almost a year ago and Emily Farison did the hard artwork for. I had the easy job of laying it out, picking out colors, and placing the order. Designing shirts is one of the best parts of my job—it's so gratifying to see someone proudly wearing your work.
the alligator wraps around the side of the shirt
Monday: I met up with the Events Planning Committee (EPiC) to work out final details for Welcome Week (The week that Freshman move in + the first week of school. Confusing, I know.) events. I handed off most of my responsibilities from last year to Fay but since we are in charge of a lot of things this year, I stayed on as VP. We got a lot planned and I was so encouraged to see most of our 20ish members present.
I met my sublet, Anna, for dinner at Nicholson's Pub, where I've been wanting to go forever. It was really good! Their chicken and noodle soup has amazing, melt-in-your-mouth dumplings. I wish I could have hung out more with Anna before she left for New York, she's awesome! But of course I needed my room back.
Tuesday: Fifty-ish leaders meet up on campus to get "trained" to lead small groups. The freshman leaders got split into Uptown and Downtown groups based on the way the dorms are laid out on campus. I had to make a bunch of calls and duck out a few times for errands during the meeting but it was great to get excited to lead this year. All my Maranatha friends are in the other small group but I know Andrew, Hannah, and Mandie pretty well and I'm excited to get to know everyone else.
Immediately after our five-hour training session I dashed over to Rohs for an Olympics meeting. (Life really doesn't feel normal unless I have ten meetings a week). After dropping off some of my freshly printed fliers at Shelbye's apartment to be stuffed in cups, Vivian, Sarah, Callie, and I distributed the rest all over campus.
boxes and boxes of Nav cups / 4/8 types of fliers
But my day wasn't over after that. Ryan and I promised to take Sarah out for her 21st birthday. We relaxed at Neon's, my favorite outdoor bar in OTR, with a few more friends. It was a crowd-pleaser; not too upscale or dive-y for anybody.
the birthday girl next to jumbo Jenga
Wednesday & Thursday: I spent most of the day passing out water bottles and moving in Freshman at Turner. We even met some football players! I scored a swag bag at day two of Water Bottle Giveaway. It's almost embarrassing my weakness for mini P&G products. Then the Downtown small group hosted a Rap Battle at Calhoun. It was the hottest party of the night attracting over 300 kids! Lots of talent all around.
WBG over-enthusiasm & preparation
Friday: Emily, Vivian and I shopped for Olympics like it was the end of the world. That made me late for my Uptown small group lunch at Tom + Chee. I finally got some downtime after lunch before coming back to campus to play some pick up games with all the new Freshman we had met. I met so many people I couldn't keep their names straight.
Saturday: I stopped by the Chili & Cupcakes Cook-off before going to babysit for the Schultz family. The giraffe and monkey cupcakes were tempting but I was so excited to get to Newtown to see my boys. I missed Will and Andrew all summer!
cookie dough cupcake
Sunday: Adam and I met up at Rohs to catch up. It's weird that we're finally back in Cincinnati (it's been nine months since we've lived in the same city) but not together. It was really peaceful and good to talk about what's going on in our lives and understand that we're on the same page with how our relationship ended. I'm so blessed to have such an amiable parting of ways—I've honestly never witnessed that in a break up before and I was terrified it couldn't happen. But God is so gracious and given us the ability to be friends and work with each other when necessary. Which is wonderful because we're neighbors and heavily involved in the same campus ministry. Hooray!
Fay and Sarah came over to eat dinner with me. They brought tons of ice cream options in case I needed dairy therapy. I was okay but it made me miss living with them so much! After they left Emily stopped by to keep me company and cut up all the fabric needed for Olympics. She is one of my favorites :)
Kroger Premium Select / fabric rainbow
Monday: I guess I should be honest with you—in my opinion Olympics is the best part of the Navigators Welcome Week. I've been in charge of it for the past three years and I always look forward to it with so much excitement. Getting to plan and brand an event is like my favorite thing to do EVER. This year was a bit complicated because of my computer crashing in the middle of my design process, but I decided not to sweat it (Woah, did I just say that?!). I was a little bit scared it would rain and we would have to reschedule like last year. I remember was so upset things got cancelled that I had to be coaxed out of my room with chocolate chip pancakes. So embarrassing. Well, this year it rained again. But only for about 20 minutes while we were setting up. And I wasn't that concerned for some reason...maybe I grew a little bit this summer ;)
The event was awesome and all the people who helped were so generous with their time and energy. After all the sign-ups happen and the individual games begin (Buck Buck, River Rafting, Poaching, Camouflage, and Jungle Tag) my only job is to walk around and make sure people are happy. Since our theme was jungle and we were pushing the "Navigator Alligators" I carried around my friend Alfredo. Everyone got a chance to meet the mascot before the final game since he was the prize. I think my favorite part of the final event was skipping around dumping ketchup on Ryan and Jon's heads while they blindly crawled around the field tied together. Kinda sounds like torture, right?
Prismatic Parrots / Pink Piranhas / Orange Orangutans
me cheering on Buck Buck / River Rafting
me cheering on Buck Buck / River Rafting
Tuesday: Exhausted from the past 10 days I dragged myself to my first day back at Landor. It's super exciting to be back but I'm pretty sure I was a zombie that day. The Nav events for the rest of the week included Ice Cream Social, Nav Night, and Euchre & Ukuleles. The events team did a fantastic job planning fun things to do all week but everyone was pretty drained in the end. Next year they might need a new strategy to save energy.
my roommate left me a sweet note
Well that was Welcome Week everyone.
Lots has happened since then but I will tell that another time!