Radiating Sunshine: So, Now I'm in Texas

Monday, July 21, 2014

So, Now I'm in Texas

This has truly been the summer of traveling for me! From studying abroad in Austria, to flying across the USA for an Alaskan Cruise, to now. I feel like I have truly spent my last summer before true adulthood so well!

While in Austria, I got a job opportunity to come back to Texas and work for Duke TIP again! If you missed any of my posts from last summer about my adventures at Texas A&M, check them out here. Anyways, on the Sunday night before I left to come home and then fly out to Alaska I got hired to work at Rice University as Duke TIPs Residential Program Assistant!

A quick background scoop on Duke TIP is that it is a program for high school students who have been identified as gifted and talented. So, these amazing and wonderful students come to one of the multiple sites that Duke TIP provides and they receive a college level academic experience and a ton of residential activities.

Unfortunately, because of travel plans I had to come 5 days late so I couldn't be here the entire term but, I have loved every second of working with the staff and these amazing TIPsters. Last year after working for TIP, all I thought about was coming back. When an opportunity to study abroad came up, I had to make a really tough decision. So, as you know I chose to see the world, but I still lived vicariously through my friends who were working for TIP. When I got an email asking if I was available to be an RPA at Rice University I knew it was meant to be! After freaking out to my study abroad friends, frantically emailing my mom to see if I could go, and sending an apologetic..."It's only two more weeks" email to my lovely boyfriend; I committed to spend the rest of my summer at TIP. It still feels so weird to be here, I mean how could I be so lucky to have all of my hopes for the summer to come true? I saw the world, spent time with my family, and got to work for a program I love!

Anyways, for the past week and the rest of this week as an RPA my duties include: writing and publishing posts on the Parent Blog, help coordinating evening activities, Dances & Termbook/Slideshow Chair, and basically doing anything that needs to get done! Since I came late into the game I was worried that it would be hard to get into the swing of things, but my bosses are great and my good friend, Brandon an RC that I worked with last year has been so helpful.

I have loved my experience with TIP... but, I've discovered that I can no longer stay up all hours of the night and I've also discovered that I probably won't ever live in Houston (voluntarily)... or if I did I would just never ever drive on the roads around here because they are just genuinely terrible. I don't know whats happening but, the drivers are aggressive, the road conditions are awful, and driving has become such a stressful activity. Oh and Houston has officially attacked my curly hair, because the whole hot & extremely humid thing is just not working...

I've been able to do so many cool things these past two weeks. I've gotten in both my Sonic and Whataburger fixes for the year... if you've never had a honey butter chicken biscuit then, unfortunately you've never lived. I have explored Rice University and have learned all about the different colleges at Rice and traditions like Beer Bike and other various activities! Rice University also has really good food. I love their healthy food options and I've been taking pictures of the things I like so maybe my university can start making it too! Oh they also have Blue Bell ice cream available at all meals, like how cool is that! If you don't know what Blue Bell ice cream is then, you also haven't lived! If I could send you some I definitely would :)

Winter Wonderland Program: Watched Elf and had an Elf themed dessert!
*Disclaimer: It is actually really gross, but strangely enjoyable to eat*
The awesome Residential Staff! 
clearly going to be a burger bun for Halloween
We always do a night out with the TIPsters and last Friday night we went to the Sugar Land Skeeters game versus The Lancaster's Barnstormers. The Skeeters lost, but technically the Barnstormers are closer to my actual home so, I cheered for them! And after the third inning, me and three other res staff members participated in one of the sideline shows. Basically, what you see above is us dressed up in burger buns and we had to build a burger. When I originally said yes, I thought I would physically build an eatable burger... well, that is not what the activity was. Basically, the bottom bun had to run across the field and the top bun had to run back and forth adding the different ingredients like the patty or lettuce, while racing the other group of burger builders. Once the ingredients were on top of the bottom burger, the top bun had to jump on top to make it complete. Well, I was the top bun and not only was this a thrilling activity but, it was also an incredible workout! So, its not every day that you get to wear a bun costume and build a burger in front of an entire group of people :)

So, that is just a little update on what I've been up to! I'll officially be home in a week and although I love my TIP family, I can't wait to be home with my actual family and be able to finally see J. I don't know what I did to deserve such a patient man, but I am constantly thanking God for sending me so many blessings!


  1. Wow!! Another fun adventure!! Looks like a fun group of people!

    1. Meg, they have been the best! Can't wait to participate in the bliss blogpost this week :)


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