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About Me:

My name is Olivia and I am a senior at Butler University. I spend most of my time in Lilly Hall as a BFA Dance Performance major. When not in rehearsal or ballet class, I write papers for my English Literature second major. In my super-abundant, never-lacking, this-is-highly-sarcastic spare time, I attempt to cook in my apartment kitchen, watch Youtube videos of ballet, knit sweaters that never seem to come to an end, and read books both silly and serious. If I could take any class at Butler just for kicks, I'd go for DiffyQ.

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Posts Tagged “roommates”

Requisite Food Post: OMG So Much Cake

In the midst of writing a zillion posts about applying and auditioning for Butler University’s Department of Dance (see here here here here), I uploaded from my camera/was given pictures from my extended birthday celebrations. I haven’t written a frivolous post about food for a while. And OMGoodness, there was so much cake.

Cake on a Tuesday

There was homemade raspberry jam-chocolate-raspberries on top-carmel on top cake.

Clean plate

I handled that like a pro.

Thursday cupcakes and cake

There were the amazing almond cupcakes with carmel buttercream icing, courtesy of the extremely talented roommate whose mission it is to surround herself with the smell of baked goods.

Artsy photo of flourless chocolate cake. (Thank you, roommate, for the picture!)

And there was the delicious dessert platter ordered when I went to a restaurant with some friends: Flourless chocolate cake, two different kinds of truffles, apples, figs, and goat cheese. I loved mixing the goat cheese with the cake. I promise, it was delicious. I thought so, but this decision perhaps was not unanimous….

Goat cheese + chocolate cake = x, x = that face.

Long story short, I met amazing people when I came to Butler, people who are kind enough to make dinner, raspberry cake, and almond cake, people who take me out to dessert and try goat cheese and chocolate together and take photos on fancy cameras to document the event. Thank you, everyone who helped celebrate my birthday in the very long, drawn-out way it manifested itself (this is where English needs more explicitly reflexive verbs…). It was all delicious! And thank you, Mom, for the cookies you sent.

The waitress was totally uninterested, so we had to reenact the moment for the requisite photo.

Juicers and Jackfruit

To the Asia Mart! This weekend, besides attending many ballet performances/dress rehearsals/tech rehearsals, I found an Asian food store with my boyfriend. We were headed to a Target to stock up on tissues and such, but Asia Mart beckoned instead…

I found the rice! (This is only a small cross-section of the rice available, as you know if you have ever entered an Asian grocery.) While we elected not to buy any rice, we did purchase tea, gummy lychee and kiwi candy, pork buns, and red bean buns. What an excellent, unexpected find! Boyfriend has slowly but surely been shifting my taste palate to the East. Take this summer. We played chess (amidst a backdrop of heartfelt karaoke) and had halo-halo.

That’s milk, shaved ice, ube ice cream, coconut jellies, jackfruit, and various beans. At least as far as I understood it. I still can’t down the iced jelly drinks or the taro-tapioca smoothies, but I will help the process!

Butler has been great about widening my palate: I’ve had various Filipino foods, Latvian foods, beets, etc… Just the other night, my roommate received her long-awaited juicer. Do you know how many things you can juice? We all had an invigorating drink of cucumber-grape-kale-ginger-apple juice.

Living in the on-campus Apartment Village housing had led to loads of cooking adventures.

Juice?

Summer at Butler: The Baking

This summer I have the good fortune to live with my roommate from our school-year apartment–the troublesome one who forces me to eat cupcakes–the one who spent a semester in France–the one who bakes.

Butler offers more than one option for its study abroad programming. My roommate went with IES, which has programs all over the world. The IES program was not a direct exchange (meaning an international student would not come to Butler when she went to France), which changes the financial aid. The nice thing about Butler, she says, is that there are lot of different programs from which to chose and so a vast array of cities. The downside? “It can be a bit confusing,” she told me.

She makes wonderful things.

She airbrushed the cake underneath this captain for Talk Like a Pirate Day.

The row of three dozen delicious cupcakes on our dining/coffee table. Chocolate, red velvet, and almond caramel.

Cakes someone ordered from her. That wire rack has come in handy after all!

I’ve been baking a bit as well. Last time I mentioned banana bread and cake. Well, I did not take a picture of the banana bread — it’s good, I promise — but I do have one of the snake cake. My baking roommate had leftover homemade frosting from some cupcakes, and I started to swirl the two colors. With a few details, we came up with snakes!

Snake cake:

Have a good Fourth of July! I hope you get a cake like this one. Or a custard tart like this. Don’t they look delicious?

 

Sssssssss...

No more promises

Okay, I just don’t feel like detailing the pen-returning adventure. Suffice it to say that there might have been a car chase, a reunion, and the return of inadvertently pilfered property. And ninja moves.

Dylan Thomas

This Sunday marks the end of the first week of BSI. Butler Summer Institute is a nine week program that allows students from all disciplines to conduct an independent study over the summer with a faculty mentor. Butler University provides housing and a stipend; there are also various lunches, informational sessions, and other get-togethers. I think we might get to do practice GREs. Next week is a research ethics module. Ugh. Much more fun will be the volunteering project in the works.

My first week looked a bit like this:

Monday–Move in. All day. BSI dinner in the evening.

Tuesday–Move in during the morning. Research in the afternoon. Discover UT kitchens doe not include microwaves.

Wednesday–Library in the morning. Lunch with the rest of the BSI participants. The library again. Give myself a ballet class. Research for the rest of the day.

Thursday–Research in the morning. Take a ballet class from a DVD with some other Butler dance majors who are on campus. Play the piano. Research for the rest of the day. Walk to a restaurant with my roommate and a friend for dinner. Research.

Friday–Research in the morning. Take a jazz class and give a ballet class with another Butler dance major. Play the piano. Research for the rest of the day.

James Joyce

Saturday–Visit the farmer’s market with my roommate. She has been spoiled by the farmer’s markets abroad but still managed to find some asperagus that wasn’t too expensive. Walk a bit in Broad Ripple. Do research and laundry. Bike to the nearby St. Thomas’ for Mass. Research.

 

Sunday–Breakfast in UT, then bike to Hubbard and Cravens’ coffee shop to research and finish annotating my last primary source! Write a blog post in stilted sentences.

Stilted, stilted. Time to delve into Anglo-Celtic literary tradition! Exclamation point not sarcastic. Quite sincere in my love of Dylan Thomas, even if James Joyce still requires many, many pretzels for moral support.

Still being fulfilled–tornadoes

The promises, I mean. Those pesky promises. The problem with assuring blog readers of future explanation comes with the actually-having-to-write-those-explanations bit. But we forge ahead:

Not driving in a car adventures: Indiana is stormy in the summer. Apparently.

Driving to a ballet rehearsal in Carmel, we were forced to seek shelter as a sudden storm blew in–one moment, the rain; the next, the upended rain barrel of God. Gravity twisted in more than three directions. Visibility was so bad it was hard to discern whether that gap in road was actually a side street into which we could turn.

We took shelter outside a synagogue. The windshield fogged up, and I had to call my dad to look up the number of the ballet studio so I could warn them of my probable tardiness.

So the rain passed and the windshield finally unfogged and after the ballet rehearsal, we tracked down a Japanese restaurant called Sakura which had been recommended to me by the Italian lady on my plane ride a few days previous. Spider rolls = good. Eating a bunch of wasabi plain = tears.

The courtyard at UT

This weather thing that I’ve discovered is normal for a Midwest summer. Yes? I’m not liking it so much. Now, wearing clothes and not absolutely melting in the outside air is lovely, especially after two decades of humid, oppressive Richmond summers. The brisk air as I eat my morning toast in the University Terrace courtyard? Divine.

The tornado sirens and the lightening and the calls warning us to seek shelter late in the night? Not so much a fan.

We are fortunate enough to be living in a basement apartment, so we did not have to go anywhere to seek shelter, except perhaps away from the larger windows in the living room. Nevertheless, I still harbored images of the car directly outside the window by my bed being slammed into the building and crushing me into something out of Flatland.

Despite the reassurances of my Midwestern roommate–who has actually survived a tornado–I might have hidden in an alcove in the living room until the lightning slowed.

The salt of the earth is in my kitchen, on my floor

It snows at Butler. The maintenance crew puts salt on the sidewalks so students and faculty don’t fall down when moving from building to building in the freezing Indianapolis winter. This is much appreciated, since I like to retain the use of both legs. Dancing is much easier with all limbs fully functional.

In this case, I don't think even salt would help remove the snow.

However, salt gets stuck to shoes. Shoes walk on the kitchen floor. Ergo, the kitchen floor gets coated with salt, and it’s disgusting.

After scrubbing and scrubbing at the kitchen floor on my hands and knees with Magic Eraser, with vinegar, and with soapy water, I hit upon a solution. Put a mat next to the front door and remove wet, salty shoes upon entry! Simple, neh?

My two remaining roommates–the troublesome one having left for Nantes for a semester abroad, leaving us bereft but thankfully free from the horrid, horrid cupcakes she forced us to eat–were kind enough to agree to go along with this plan. I shall inform you of our progress.

The physics smackdown is over. Let the war with salty floors commence.

The Butler ducks don't have to worry about salt in their pond by the bell tower. I took this picture when I was a freshman and liked pretending to be a nature photographer.

Finals week: another look

If I were an international studies and French double major also participating in the honors program… I would be my troublesome roommate. And my finals schedule would look like this:

The week before finals week:

1. Honors class about Doctor Zhivago: a poetry anthology which explicated several poems by Russian writers and included original works

Doctor Zhivago [Book]

2. International studies class on the United Nations (IS 390): a paper on–you guessed it!–the United Nations

3. Anthropology class titled “Gender and Sexuality through Globalization” (AN 320): a paper on Fight Club exploring the film’s connections between masculinity and violence

Fight Club Poster

Finals week:

1. 18th Century French literature (FR 435): a paper comparing literature from the beginning and the end of 18th century France

2. Doctor Zhivago honors class: a written final

3. Cultural Geography (GE 109): a written final on Asia and the Pacific Islands

After all that madness, one does not quite know what to do with oneself. So one attempts to use the last of the bread, garlic, and butter in the refrigerator before leaving campus and ends up watching croutons bake.

Clearly, Butler students don’t know what to do with themselves without schoolwork. But those croutons were reeeeally good.

Finally

“Final”-ly? Get it? Get it?

I’m done with finals!

After I finished dance finals on Friday, I went straight into academic final week, which is when most of the rest of campus freaks out.

The finals week schedule of a dance/English major

Saturday: I attended the Butler School of Music’s Rejoice! holiday concert with a friend and saw Blue II ride across the stage during a rendition of Blue Christmas. I had never been to Rejoice! before, and this was the 25th anniversary of the show, which is offered every year, free to the Indianapolis community. Students from the University’s various faculty- and student-led choral groups performed with the Indianapolis Children’s Choir and two students from Butler’s Dance Department.

At the end of the show, there was a live auction for a special conductor’s baton and the chance to led the choir in the Hallelujah Chorus. The show was terribly exciting, and it should probably merit its own post, but I’m feeling lazy.

Sunday: I failed to get groceries due to the snow.

Monday: I sat my dance history final and wrote about Imperial Russian ballet and Romanticism until my fingers went numb.

Tuesday: I submitted my final copy (final for the class at least… I’m about to revise part of it yet again as soon as I finish this blog post) of my Irish literature paper. The final title? An Argument for Cosmopolitanism: Creating National Identity in Brian Friel’s Translations.

Also, I completed the science lab I had missed due to a Nutcracker dress rehearsal. And studied like mad for physics.

Wednesday: In the morning, we presented our dance for the Choreography I final. In the afternoon, I sat the physics exam. I don’t really want to talk about it. In the end physics might have come out on top in this semester-long smackdown. I was not doing too badly, but then I rather abruptly ran out of time. I thought the professor told us we had four hours, and I was doing a solid 25 problems an hour, just barely. Twenty-five times four is one hundred. Perfect.

However, at 3 hours, 15 minutes, he announced, “Fifteen minutes left.” Panic! Let’s just say physics won this round, hands-down. It was not the best way to go out after a semester of hard work, but there’s nothing I can do about it now. Oh well.

After I frolicked with a friend through the halls of Lilly (which means we played with the piano in one of the practice rooms and I showed off my awesome C minor scale, of which I quite proud), I checked more books out of the library to read for my proposal for a summer project through the Butler Summer Institute. If anything progresses past this planning stage, I shall inform you.

Thursday: I woke up with the realization that I was done, done, done with this fall semester of my junior year! I had a lunch date with the on-campus Catholic priest, Fr. Jeff. I’m going to be president of the Butler Catholic Community next semester… wish me luck! Our last president was extremely organized, so I have large shoes to fill.

Now I’m just finishing up little things before I fly home. For example:

1. Scrubbing the kitchen floor to rid it of the salt that gets tracked in from the snowy, slushy, disgusting sidewalks.

2. Organizing the massive heaps of school papers that congregated on my desk during the last third of the semester.

3. Pestering my one remaining roommate, who–I must add–is exceedingly tolerant. When she is not being troublesome.

4. Drinking massive amounts of tea. Necessary.

5. Finishing one book (remember McCall Smith?) and starting another (which I got way back in September for my birthday and which turned out to be the second of a trilogy… I have a winter project!).

6. Organizing and consigning to the “deshank later” pile about ten pairs of pointe shoes. Okay, perhaps there were only eight pairs. I despise going through pointe shoes. I never want to admit they are dead, because that means sewing more. However, when one cannot stand en pointe without the box collapsing forward, it is time to bid the offending shoe adieu.

7. Taking a Playdough break with a friend. I found Playdough while organizing a hideously untidy drawer and promptly decided to distract my friend, who probably really needed to finish the due-the-next-day computer science project. Hanging out with friends who still have finals when one is finished for the semester? Probably not the best idea. However, I created a Playdough rabbit in anticipation of seeing our two baby rabbits when I go home for break in a few days. Admire.

My friend made a person. Sadly, the arm did not want to stay. I managed to capture the Playdough limb mid-fall in one photo, a fact about which I am extremely proud.

Another post about breakfast

I have not blogged so much about breakfast this year. Last year, I feel like “breakfast” might actually have shown up on my tag cloud for a little while. I think I have more of a life now and have more to talk about. That’s just a theory, mind you.

However, this post relates both to life and to breakfast! (As if breakfast weren’t life. I love breakfast.) My dancer roommate turned twenty-one this past Sunday, and we celebrated by having brunch at Zest! (I’m not actually excited enough to use two exclamation points in one paragraph–the restaurant is called “Zest!”)

Indianapolis has loads of awesome breakfast places. My current favorite is the Three Sisters’ Cafe, but I also enjoy Taste, Zest!, and Le Peep. I have also heard wonderful reviews of Good Morning Mama’s.

Breakfast was good, but even better were the crayons on the table. We all drew lovely pictures on the tablecloth. Here’s mine:

I’m not sure what this collection of images reveals about me, but I shall explain them in case you cannot figure out what my scribbles are supposed to be.

Tour of the tablecloth:

Starting in the upper left, you see some text that belonged to a rendering of my roommate. Traveling clockwise, the next drawing we encounter is a stick figure typing an Irish Literature paper and being distracted. Then come the fireworks with a few physics equations to go with it–the kinetic energy of a rotating body and the kinematic equation for the velocity of the center of mass. (I hope. I have a physics test coming up.)

Math aside, we have a blue figure that was originally a person but had, for reasons of good taste, to be scribbled out. She/he/it is is holding a bass. Then we see some colorful blocks of squares. Off in the corner is a chef holding a spoon: NOT an ice cream cone, thank you very much. I’m not a great artist, but I’m not that bad. Mostly.

In the middle is a green woman with a curly perm. To the bottom is a tipsy, blonde woman in a huge bustle skirt. The last math-type object is a horrible, horrible recollection of a LaPlace Transform. DO NOT believe anything I ever say about math. L{cosh(theta)} does not equal what I said it does.

L {cosh(alpha*t)} = s / [(s^2) - (alpha^2)]

What does that mean? Apart from the fact that a hyperbolic cosine is oscillating (and doesn’t it normally do that anyway?), I have no idea. I just think it looks neat.

Since I been gone

Looking at my post list, I see it’s been five days since I’ve released a new blog! Sorry about that. This past week has been super busy. Here are some of my excuses:

I saw the Paul Taylor Dance Company quite some time ago, so perhaps it does not quite count as an excuse. I harbored mixed feelings about the program, but I adored “Esplanade,” one of great masterworks of the twentieth century. The video below is from the beginning of the last, crazy section. I also enjoyed seeing the solo the Butler dance department’s modern teacher Susan McGuire originated in “Dust.”
YouTube Preview Image

Dancer Thanksgiving potluck. My roommate and I brought apple-cranberry bread. And when I say “my roommate and I,” I mean I provided some of the ingredients and got out the bread pan. Then I watched my dancer roommate and my troublesome roommate make it together. Moral support, ya know?

Trader Joe's apple bread mix with added, homemade, cranberry sauce

Nutcracker Studio Dress rehearsal on Saturday! Studio Dress is when the department first runs the entire production in order, in costume, in the largest studio. After Studio Dress comes a week of production run-throughs in that same studio (Studio 310). Then comes Thanksgiving Break. Then comes production week in the theater. The performances are fast approaching.

Attending the Jazz Combos performance in the campus Starbucks to see my two jazz-musician friends. One plays the French horn; the other, the bass. Coolness. Would anyone like a post on French horn majors or jazz minors?

Writing the introduction and outline to my dance history paper on Irish dancing
Writing and writing and writing my Irish Lit paper. I finally finished the rough draft last night–before 11 pm! My friend gave me a CD and said I couldn’t listen to it until I was finished with the paper. How’s that for motivation? To be completely honest, I am rather disappointed with the result, since my thesis is pretty convoluted and not incredibly dependent on my readings of Translations. Oh well. It’s done for now, and I can fix it over Thanksgiving Break. I turned the paper in earlier today–all 21.5 pages!

Writing my Irish Lit paper--do you like my stack of sources?

Mastering the art of the Rubik’s cube. I will defeat you! (And I have, just not without the aid of a cheat sheet once I get to the final layer. I confuse the algorithms for reorienting the corners with those for reorienting the sides: R2 B2, R F R’, B2 R F’ R is for corners and R2 U’, F B’, R2, B F’, U’ R2 is for the sides. Maybe if I type it enough times I’ll remember this. This is clearly the top priority right now.)

I have a massive physics test on Thursday. Like, with enough surface area such that one can’t ignore air resistance massive. Everyone studying for the past week massive. A friend’s friend telling me this test made her abandon her dream of becoming an engineer massive. (Said friend is now a sixth grade math teacher.) Now my Irish Lit paper is done for the next few days, I can turn all my attention to studying for this test.

Oh yeah. I have a bunch of reading for Irish Lit, too. Whoops.