Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Short Hair FAQs

Here is the back for you curious folks!
I'm just four days into short hair and am loving it! Thank goodness, right?! Because that really would have sucked to cut it all off and hate it. No way dudes.

The reactions I have gotten from people have been amazingly positive. It is totally a day maker each time someone tells me that they love it, or how much it suits my face. I have even run into students who I have assisted in our office, but whose name I don't know, who have said, "wow, awesome haircut!" I honestly do not know if anyone would tell me if they hated it, but I will always assume the best - that they ain't lyin'.

Here are some of my favorite reactions/questions I have gotten so far: 

What does the back look like? (from those who have only seen pics online). There it is! Short in the front, and in the back. Not a mullet.  

Wait, is there a ponytail back there? Nope! Not even a tiny rat tail. It's gone!

Woah, what made you do that? I'd actually been planning it for awhile. Months. Wanted a change and was sick of my long hair. (Internal thoughts: Clearly you don't read my blog. Haha.)

Is it weird to get used to? Yes and no. There are moments when it feels weird (like when I thought I looked like the Biebs). But most of the time I don't even think about it. I feel like the hardest part right now is that my hair is having its typical first-week reaction, where it doesn't do what I want it to. I always have to give it a week of growth to get used to its new style. Does anyone else have this same experience? Hair has a mind of its own. I believe it. 

Did you donate the rest? Sadly, no. It had been my plan to ask, but the hair was already snipped and hanging out on the floor before I remembered. In all of that excitement to cut it off, we had jumped right in and it was already too late. I did donate my hair back in 2004, which was an awesome experience. I would totally recommend it to anyone else who may be thinking about going shorter.

How did Chris react? He actually didn't see it in person until the following day, because he was out of town during the weekend that I cut it. I did send him a picture via text though. I have, of course, bugged him about whether or not he likes it multiple times since he has gotten back. To which he responds, "Yes, I like it. Do you expect me to just stare at it all day?" Fair.

Is it harder to style? I've heard it can be harder to have short hair. Depends on what you consider harder. It is faster/easier to wash. It air dries nicely in about 10-15 minutes (yeah straight hair!), blow dries in 2-3 minutes. A little product and I'm set. I consider that far easier. Especially because most days with long hair, I chose not to style it at all, because it was too much work and just never looked the way I wanted it to. I will say that with short hair, I may just look a little crazy if I try to leave the house without washing it first, because I get some awesome bedhead in the morning. We're talking full-on Alfalfa sticking up in the back.

You are definitely going to have to wear makeup everyday! To give some context, this was said by a family member, known for typically giving honest, blunt reactions (cough: Mom). So my actual response in the moment was: "Mom! Why is that the first thing that comes out of your mouth?!" Do you have these moments with your family too? Chris tells me that I do exactly the same thing...hmm. My more mature response that I would offer now - I know that she made the statement because I am almost ghostly pale, and with dark hair and dark glasses, my features get washed out pretty easily. That's a true statement - short hair or long hair. I know, coming from my mom, who had short hair for most of her life, that it was not meant as a statement that I have to wear makeup to demonstrate that I am feminine, not masculine. However, for others who may have similar thoughts - it's my call on exactly how much makeup that I choose to wear on a daily basis. I do like to play with makeup and wear it most days, but I guess that I don't feel like my femininity needs to be defined by makeup. Okay, I'll jump off the gender expression soapbox for now. And I will say that my mom really likes my hair, and has been very supportive, so please don't give her any flack. : )

So that's what it is like to have short hair so far. It's growing on me. Haha.

Toodles. : )


Monday, September 24, 2012

Hometown Glory

I love Milwaukee.

I really do.

This weekend, Historic Milwaukee hosted an even throughout the city called Doors Open Milwaukee. Buildings throughout the city opened their doors for cool and unique tours. You could check out Milwaukee places that might not usually be open to the public. Despite the fact that I looked like a total scrub, I headed downtown to check it out.

My first stop: The observation tower at the US Bank Center.

The US Bank Center is the tallest and probably the most iconic tower on the Milwaukee skyline. It is made of steel covered in white aluminum and has distinct diagonal trusses. Before it was the US Bank Center, it was the Firstar Center, and before that, the First Wisconsin Center back when it was the headquarters for First Wisconsin National Bank.

Why do I know all this? My dad actually worked for First Wisconsin straight out of graduate school, followed by Firstar, and then US Bank. He may have been the only person that I know who worked for the same company for his whole career, continuing with the bank, merger after merger. He was a pretty lucky dude to make it through all of that turnover in the banking business. Not typical. He worked on a number of different floors in the tower, before we moved to Iowa, when they sent him to work with the banks there. When he was asked to move back to Milwaukee, he was back downtown, working at their building across the street until he got too sick to work anymore. He is why the building holds a special place in my heart, and why I was so excited to get downtown and up into the tower.

The building is 42 stories tall, and the observation tower is on the 41st floor. It was quite the ride to the top in the service elevator. My ears definitely popped.

The views were amazing. Truly spectacular. I am fairly certain it is the best place to see the city. Although you have to look from the corners, because the US Bank signs obscure most of the tower. Check these out:

So awesome. The only part that was surprising is that you can really only see out of the corners because the signs on the outside block the majority of the view. So everyone was huddled in the corners. It was quite controversial when they decided to put the signs on the building. Now I can see why. This is what the diagonals look like from the inside:

As a whole, it was a very cool experience. I ended my time at the US Center by going down to the second floor and getting some popcorn, as a JerBear tribute. I couldn't begin to tell you the number of days that he used to eat popcorn for lunch while he was working. And you all wonder where I get my bad habits from.... It seemed only appropriate.

Here's to you Jer Bear - call me crazy, but I like to think of it as your building. You certainly gave 'em your best years. Thanks for making Milwaukee my hometown. I'm discovering what a wonderful place that it really is. I'm glad US Bank didn't send us to Montana. : )

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Just A Short-Haired Girl...

So I have gone short before, but never this short! During today's haircut, I went from this:

To this!

Pixie Time!

I am loving my hair. I feel like it is the haircut I have been waiting to find. I couldn't be more excited. I have been ready for a new style for awhile, but didn't want to go back to the same bob w/bangs that I usually do. The only thing I enjoyed about long hair was being able to put it in a ponytail for running. Other than that, I never was able to style it in a way that I loved.

And a big than you to Justine at The Establishment, who cut my hair. She did an absolutely amazing job and is so much fun. She was totally supportive and excited throughout the process, which eased any possible fears. Like when she was about half-way through and had cut off all of the length in the back, and I said, "well wouldn't this be a bad time to figure out that I have a misshapen head." It will be fun to go back in 6 weeks and play with the style again.

Checking off No. 20 and No. 25 today!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Northern Exposure

How fun is this girl?! Can't wait to hang out with her!
Hey der! Haha. I am so excited I can barely contain myself!

Next weekend, I am heading up north to Duluth, MN to see one of my favorite people in the world, my friend Ann.

Initally, we were planning to go camping (slash get in one of my training runs, womp womp), but those plans fell through and we decided to just have an outdoorsy visit in the north woods. A decision I am totally okay with, because when I talked to Ann earlier this week, she said it was only in the 40s up there. My response via text was "Holy sh*t. I'm not even wearing socks." Can't exactly imagine sleeping outside. Not to mention that a few coworkers instilled me with a healthy fear of bears in that area. I am still having a hard time mentally preparing to wear socks...fall is here.

I submitted by passport renewal so that hopefully it will come in time for us to go to Canada. It's about a three and a half hour drive to get to Thunder Bay, Ontario. Which of course sounds like an exciting place to a girl who has never been to Canada. I'm in!

I also asked the following questions in preparation:

  1. I don't have any flannel. Will I stand out?
  2. "I suppose it wouldn't be very outdoorsy to get mani/pedis." (Not a question - but she said we could get 'em)
  3. Can I see a moose? Do you have those?!
  4. Are there any northwoods foods or drinks I have to try?
  5. Can we go to Tim Horton's? (I only know about this from HIMYM)
I told Ann that our weekend needs a name. I am proposing Northern Exposure.

Can't wait to see my friend and have an adventure! Just 7 days!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

One Chicken, Three Lives

Who is ready for a cooking adventure?!

I am working on trying to save money on food and to make sure that we aren't throwing away too much food. I don't exactly love leftovers, which makes this quite hard sometimes.

On Monday, I decided to maximize my rotisserie chicken. Sort of a personal challenge to see how many meals I could get out of it, for as little money as I could spend.

Hello chicken! You look juicy and delicious. Let's make the most of you.
First meal - we ate some of the chicken and I roasted some potatoes that I got from our CSA basket. The chicken was on sale for $5.99, which is a pretty good price, and the potatoes were free. Not bad. Especially since we ate less than a 1/4 of it for that meal.

Assembly line! Don't mind the messy kitchen!
I then pulled off the rest of the meat, and shredded it to make enchiladas, one of my go-to meals for leftover chicken. They are fairly easy to put together, and great for a busy week. I had an evening meeting on Tuesday night, so I prepped the pans, and left them for Chris to top with sauce/cheese and cook. I don't really use an enchilada recipe - it's something I've sort of just make up as I go. I typically mix the shredded chicken with shredded pepper jack cheese and add some green chiles. I heat the tortillas enough to wrap them (I used flour this time because Chris likes them, but I prefer corn). Then top with sauce and cheese and heat through until the cheese is melted in a 350-degree oven. Easy peasy. The only thing I would do differently next time is to season the chicken more.

For the cheese, sauce, tortillas, and canned chiles, I spent just $7.49. Plus we now have lots of tortillas for tacos, fajitas, etc. I was able to make 10 enchiladas out of the chicken, which should get us 4-5 servings. Thankfully, Chris likes taking leftovers for lunch. I am trying to learn from him.

Finally, this is where I got real crafty, making some stock. The thought of throwing chicken bones into a pot with some veggies and cooking - not something I have ever done before. But, I found some easy to follow directions on a great food blog - Budget Bytes. And with all of the veggies that we have from the CSA basket, it was a great way to use some of the scraps.

I started by collecting all of the chicken bones, skin, etc. from the rotisserie chicken and dumping that into the bottom of the pot. (Wasn't sure about the skin, but decided to give it a go). Then, threw in the tops and bottom from a celery bunch, the extra parts of a green pepper, a few garlic cloves, some leftover carrots, and some of the outermost layer of an onion. Then I topped this with water.

This made me think of that book - Stone Soup. Remember that one? 
One thing I did spend some money on for this part was a pack of poultry blend herbs, which were on sale for $1.99. I knew I had some thyme, but wasn't sure if it was still good. And I figured herbs could definitely help out the stock. I also bought some cheesecloth so I could make a little packet for the herbs. Total cost for the stock (not counting the chicken and veggies that I already had) - $6.67.

Good stuff. Much easier than buying each herb individually. 
 Once I got my pot to boil, I started to clean up. And then found this guy on my cutting board.

Hello! Hope you didn't bring any friends with you - don't really want them flavoring the stock. 
So here's the thing to know about making stock. It takes four hours to simmer. At least four hours. Don't start yours at 8 pm. Woops.

At about midnight, I strained out all of the bones, meat and veggies. Ta da!

What do you think? Should we eat this?
I had to do a second straining through a paper towel. That took awhile. Clearly I was using Bounty...

The finished product.
I managed to fill three of the big yogurt containers with stock, which all went right into the freezer. I will most likely use it for soups, maybe some other meals. I was too tired to try it at 12:30 am, but it did smell flavorful and delicious. Both cats were trying to climb onto the counter the whole time. I take it they approve.

Stock was much easier than I thought. You should give it a try. It felt pretty good to use all of the chicken. Waste not, want not. Right?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

30B430 Book 26: The Weird Sisters

I don't know what it is, but there are two book themes that I just can't get enough of: relationships between sisters (because I have one, obviously), and books about people who like books. Crazy, right?

The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown, is a book about a family with three daughters who were all raised on Shakespeare, rather than Sesame Street and Barney like the rest of us. This was due to the fact that their father, a college professor at a small liberal arts college, is one of the world's leading experts on The Bard. One of his many eccentricities - he teaches his daughters to express thoughts and emotions through quoting Shakespeare.

The book is set around the homecoming of the three adult daughters, who have returned because their mother is fighting breast cancer. Each comes with their own secrets, and they continue to experience jealousy, sibling rivalry, and those other things that come with having sisters. One of my favorite quotes from the book, "See, we love each other. We just don't like each other very much."

One of the interesting quirks of the book, is that it is told in first person as "We" as though they are all narrating the book together. That took me awhile to get used to, because as the "we" would talk about one of the sisters, you assumed it meant one of the others was the narrator. But eventually you figure out that it is more of a shared "we" throughout. Kind of confusing. At times, annoying.

I often found myself having to look up the specific plays that were being referenced in their quotes, because beyond Hamlet, Macbeth, Romeo and Juliet, and A Midsummer Night's Dream, I do not know too many of the other plays.

Overall, a very good read. It was a book where I found myself saying, "Okay, just one more chapter," when I really should have been sleeping. Always a good sign. In fact, I started to try to read faster, to be able to finish and write this post. Total nerd.

Just four more books to go to hit my goal!

The Final Countdown

Check out that updo! The last one for a long time!
Did you sing the song in your head? I definitely did.

This is it folks. This is one of my final days with long hair. It is getting the chop on Sunday. Bye bye long ponytail, hello pixie!

I am definitely having those moments where I get freaked out. Am I going to like it? Will I miss having long hair? Am I prepared for how often I am going to have to get a haircut? Only time will tell. But more of me is excited than nervous.

I'll be sure to post pictures. Stay tuned. Can't wait to check off #25!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

To the Bride and Groom

Me and the beautiful bride. Sadly the only pic I got of us together.
(Screw you iPhone flash.)
This weekend, I was able to watch two of my very best friends get married after 8 years and seven months of dating. It was an absolutely beautiful day, that was made even better with all of the joy shared among their family and friends.

Not long after we had moved back to Wisconsin, Maria had asked me to serve as a co-Maid of Honor with her sister: a co-MOH, you might say. I was incredibly touched, because both she and Eric have done so much for me - more than I could ever give them back. I consider them family - the best kind of family, those that you adopt as your own. And the three of us have been through some major life changes together. I cannot think of any other friends who have shaped who I am as much as the two of them. Which made it very hard to think about how I could properly toast the two when the time came.

Even though I felt stupid doing so, I decided to look up some advice, read some "Best Wedding Toasts" (some of which could hardly be described as the best - it's amazing what you find when you Google), and thought about the weddings I had gone to and what had worked/what hadn't. I settled on a few key ground rules:

  1. Keep it short. There were four of us speaking after all. And this wasn't about me, it's about them.
  2. Speak about both of them. This was easy, because although Maria and I have had some awesome adventures without Eric, he was there for most of them too. 
  3. Avoid too many inside jokes. Those just feel awkward for everyone else.
  4. Mix the funny and the sentimental. Oh, plus a dash of my usual Kirstin awkward.
  5. Don't cry. Because crying and talking at the same time has just never worked out well for me. It gets ugly. This was probably the hardest. Because I cried as I wrote my speech, and I teared up as I practiced. Thankfully, my practice audience was a cat. He didn't judge.
I am a much more comfortable writer than I am a speaker. So I decided to start with writing, followed by lots of practice. There is no winging it for this girl. I knew that I couldn't stand up and share some of those more important moments, so I focused on the story of how I met them, how they met each other, and how they found love.

Without further ado, this is what I wrote, and a close proximity to what I shared with their family in friends yesterday:

Good evening everyone!
 My name is Kirstin, and I have also been friends with Eric and Maria since college. It was actually about this week, 10 years ago, that both Maria and I were looking for an on-campus job at UW-Madison. A mutual acquaintance told us about an opening at the Campus Information and Visitor’s Center. Thankfully there were two positions, and so we both got jobs and quickly bonded over hours of data entry.
 Eric was serving as the tour guide coordinator at the time. We didn’t really know him– he was that quiet guy that you’d pass in the hallway. Secretly we found kinda scary. Which made it interesting when he was given the desk next to us in our second year. Eventually we started teaming up and playing pranks on Eric, and began to realize that he wasn’t quite so scary. In fact, I think he was probably more scared of us. This was also when I began to notice that Maria and Eric shared a mutual attraction, as I sat between them every day.
Always one to have a big mouth, I made sure they knew that they were “in like” with each other on my 21st birthday when they took me out to celebrate. That is a day that they have celebrated together for eight years as their anniversary, until today when February 15th is replaced by September 15th. Maria and Eric – You may have a wonderful new anniversary to celebrate, but I will still share February 15th with the two of you any day. (You can have as many anniversaries as you want).
 I think all of us can share something that Maria and Eric have taught us about relationships in their long journey to this day. For me, it has been three key things:
·      Family always comes first.
·      There is always room for friends to tag along. (I know I’m not the only one who has been the third wheel)
·      And, finally, whether distance, illness, or any other obstacle, you can get through as a team together. 
To Maria and Eric, thank you for letting all of us tag along on your journey together. I may take credit for giving you a nudge in the right direction, but I also know that you would have found each other without me (just maybe a little slower, knowing Eric's pace) – Truly though, the love you have built together is all yours. A toast to the bride and groom -  May each new adventure together be better than the last.  Cheers! 
I am beyond incredibly happy for the two of them, and know that it will only get better for them from here. Best wishes to the two best people I know.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Pinterest Project: Freezing Basil

I have posted about our adventures with a CSA basket a few times. Sadly, I have probably thrown away more of the vegetables than those that I have eaten. So lately, I have been making a concerted effort to find a way to freeze or keep those that I can't eat right away, especially as winter approaches and veggie costs go up.

I have already made a few batches of pesto, which Chris won't eat, so when I got even more basil this week, I decided to try a new technique that I saw on Pinterest - freezing basil and olive oil in ice cube trays! A huge thanks to The Kitchn for the pin-spiration!

It was incredibly easy. I started with an empty ice cube tray... 

Tore up some basil leaves and filled the cube spots...

Poured in some olive oil...

Covered with plastic wrap...

Froze overnight until solid...

Threw in a ziploc and put back in the freezer. 

Dunzo. I can't wait to be able to use some fresh herbs in oil throughout the winter, without having to buy it at the store when it is incredibly expensive. 

Definitely worth trying with your extra herbs. Next up: figuring out what to do with my arugula!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

DIY Fall Decor: Festive Pennant Banner

I have had the itch to do some crafting lately. I know it may seem a little early, but I just could not wait to get the fall decorations out. Fall is by far my favorite season. I love everything about it. Why not celebrate throughout the house?!

I decided to make a quick, easy pennant, using just scrapbook paper and twine. Easy peasy. Just a little bit of measuring, cutting, hole punching, and hanging. Done in less than 30 minutes.

Check it out:

Sorry for the horrible lighting. Silly iPhone pics.

Happy Fall y'all!

Stop. Breathe. Bounce.

Welp, it has been a stressful few weeks. And I am thankful that things are going to return to a busy, but normal pace. Which hopefully means getting back to more blogging. I apologize, I just haven't had the time or the energy to post my various life adventures. So here is a short one...

Last Friday, we hosted the biggest event, Pantherfest. And I had the opportunity to lead up the team that planned the pre-show. Consider it the carnival before the concert. We planned for weeks. Our event ran from 3-6 pm. It began downpouring promptly around 2:45 pm. From there, stuff started to fall apart a bit as the wind picked up and it rained harder.

Despite the heavy, cold rain, students came. And they ate. As long as you offer free food, rain won't stop everyone, especially when the line for the buses is adjacent to your event. Lesson learned.

I wish I could say I was totally calm and collected throughout the event, but I was honestly a ball of stress. Not at my best. Until I took a minute to stop, breathe, and just enjoy the event. Specifically, by bouncing...

Right before they began to tear down, I decided to go for it and jumped on the Euro Bungee. There are videos floating around of me totally getting scared on the thing and yelling, "I don't want to flip!" Awesomely embarrassing. But super fun. And a much needed release. Because when you are wearing a harness strapped to bungee cords, you just jump.

Like my new rain boots?

Thursday, September 6, 2012

56 Things

My coworker, Claudia, and I on the Fall Welcome Boat Tour. No. 1 and No. 55!
This month, my office introduced one of our exciting new initiatives, The UWM Bucket List. One of the major goals of our office is to develop the culture of student involvement on campus, and to help connect students to awesome things on campus and in the community. We know that not every student is going to want to be those rockstar orientation leaders, RAs, and student organization leaders, but we hope that they will carve out their own little niche on campus to call their own. So we figured this would be an accessible way to give students a taste of campus, through a fun sort of challenge.

 After seeing other campuses successfully implement similar programs (a huge shout out to Emily, who introduced me to University of South Florida's list), we thought it was worth giving it a shot. (One of the first things you learn working in education -  borrowing successful ideas!) So we polled students, faculty and staff, and finally settled on those key experiences and traditions. Some of them are things I never would have thought of, like "15. Close your eyes in the Fireside Lounge, known as UWM's quietest nap spot." Others are things that were already on my To Do list, like "See the city of Milwaukee by boat" (which I happened to check off last week as part of Fall Welcome, woo hoo).

We have gotten a lot of buzz with the students already, perhaps for the free t-shirt that they get if they complete the list. More than anything, we want them to get out there and have fun.

And because I am a list-lover myself, I am also trying to check off some of the traditions too. I have highlighted the ones I already have done. I may not be graduating, so my goal is to complete the 56 during my time at UWM. By far my favorite project yet.

Without further ado, here is the list, which can be found at

The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Bucket List – 56 Things To Do Before You Graduate

Your UWM experience should be an adventure. Get out and explore all that UWM and Milwaukee has to offer, from campus life to local favorites. Finish the list? Receive a free T-shirt. What will you check off first?
  1. Attend a Fall Welcome event to kick off the academic year.
  2. Stargaze at the UWM Manfred Olson Planetarium.
  3. Volunteer at RAK-A-Thon, MLK Jr. Day of Service, or the Hunger Clean Up.
  4. Get your photo taken with Pounce.
  5. Join one of UWM's 300+ student organizations. (I'll modify this one to "advise" - check)
  6. Attend the Distinguished Lecture Series.
  7. Visit the Milwaukee County Zoo and its 2,500 animals.
  8. Soak up the sun on Spaights Plaza.
  9. Vote for your student leaders in the Student Association election. (I can't do this one myself. Thankfully we built in a few freebies).
  10. Check out the Milwaukee Art Museum, it's free the first Thursday of the month.
  11. Take a trip with Outdoor Pursuits.
  12. Eat at Oakland Gyros, an East Side landmark.
  13. Participate in or volunteer at the Panther Prowl, UWM's annual 5K run/walk.
  14. Enjoy the lake view at Alterra at the Lake.
  15. Close your eyes in the Fireside Lounge, known as UWM's quietest nap spot.
  16. Attend PANTHERFEST.
  17. Enroll in a fitness class, or use the facilities at the Klotsche Center.
  18. Witness the cross-town rivalry at a UWM vs. Marquette soccer or basketball game.
  19. Attend the annual UWM Drag Show.
  20. Eat at the Kenwood Inn, located on the third floor of the Student Union.
  21. Grab a slice at Ian's Pizza on North Avenue.
  22. Play a game of volleyball or catch some rays at Bradford Beach, Milwaukee's largest public beach.
  23. Cheer on the Milwaukee Panthers men's basketball team at the Klotsche Center.
  24. Attend a competition for one of the 14 other Panther varsity athletic teams.
  25. Eat some popcorn and catch a movie at the Union Theatre.
  26. Attend one of the 300+ performances at the Peck School of the Arts.
  27. Wear UWM apparel to class and show your Panther Pride.
  28. Attend one of Milwaukee's many festivals.
  29. Check out the student artwork at the Union Art Gallery's Annual Juried Exhibition.
  30. Challenge friends to bowling, billiards, or ping pong at the Union Rec Center.
  31. Attend Jazz in the Park, Milwaukee's favorite free outdoor, summer music series.
  32. Eat lunch by the fountain outside of Curtin Hall.
  33. Root for the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park.
  34. Take a ride with Be On the Safe Side (BOSS).
  35. Enjoy a meal and check out Team Night Trivia or a performer in the Gasthaus.
  36. Reach out and make new friends you did not know in high school. - I meet new people every day! One of the best parts of my job!
  37. Visit the Milwaukee Public Market in the Historic Third Ward.
  38. Finish the crossword puzzle in one of the weekly editions of the UWM Post.
  39. Find your favorite Milwaukee Friday Fish Fry. (Most offer non-fish options too!)
  40. Meet the Chancellor.
  41. Try some of Milwaukee's famous frozen custard.
  42. Walk through Downer Woods, UWM's 11.1 acre preserved nature area.
  43. Attend a UWM graduation ceremony (other than your own).
  44. Visit the Career Development Center or attend one of the many career fairs.
  45. Attend a Bike-Powered Concert.
  46. Donate blood or volunteer at a Campus Blood Drive.
  47. Make something in the Studio Arts and Crafts Centre.
  48. See an outdoor movie under the stars. (We recommend Fish Fry and a Flick)
  49. Head down to the Milwaukee River Walk and take a photo with the Bronze Fonz.
  50. Run, walk, or bike the Oak Leaf or Hank Aaron State Trails.
  51. Get a cup of coffee or tea at the student-run 8th Note Coffeehouse.
  52. Take a class that interests you and has nothing to do with your major.
  53. Find the perfect study spot at the Golda Meir Library.
  54. Make snow angels on campus.
  55. See the city of Milwaukee by boat.
  56. Find the North Point Light Station in Lake Park.
**Choose Your Own Adventure Option – Don't feel like doing something on the list? You may opt to substitute up to three UWM bucket list items with a UWM campus or Milwaukee challenge of your choice. (As long as it is legal/ethical, of course).**
Complete all 56 items on this list, and bring your pictures, ticket stubs, etc. to the Center for Student Involvement (Union 363) for an "I Completed the UWM Bucket List" T-shirt!

Bucket List Bonus!

*Take the Bucket List Abroad! Send us your picture with Pounce at a must-visit place at your study abroad locale and we will post it on our web site!
*Graduate! – Show us your completed Bucket List and your graduation announcement and we will give you a sticker to wear on your cap at commencement.

Why 56 Things?

The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee was created in 1956. The UWM Bucket List was developed in 2012, 56 years from UWM's founding date. 56 things seems appropriate, don't you think?

Monday, September 3, 2012

30B430 Book 25: Funny in Farsi: A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America

I first heard of Funny in Farsi: A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America by Firoozeh Dumas, because she will be the Distinguished Lecture Series speaker at UWM at the end of September. Interested in her talk, I figured I would give the book a read first. Or rather, a listen. I got this one on Audible. Kind of fun, since now I have a sense of how Dumas will speak.

Dumas and her family moved to Whittier, CA from Iran in the 70s, and this book is a collection of her humorous reflections growing up in an immigrant family, navigating identity and culture. 

I definitely found this book funny, especially Dumas' descriptions of her parents' love of free samples, her experience learning to swim, and the challenges of being Muslim during the Christmas season.  There is some reflection on the Iranian Revolution, although she lightly touches on them, as compared to some other books

It is a very fast book, if you are looking for a quick read (or listen). Each chapter is more like a short essay. I look forward to hearing more from Dumas later this month!
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