Monday, June 28, 2010

Horned Frog for Life

I’m finally going to post about graduation, and the fun events leading up to it! Never mind the fact that I graduated almost two months ago. I want to document it all here, and hopefully soon my posts will become a little more frequent.

Graduation week really started to hit home for me with our “Senior Toast.” TCU sure knows how to congratulate seniors the right way, because none of my friends at other schools were fortunate enough to have a full fajita dinner, free purple margaritas, and a chance to win tons of door prizes with their entire graduating class. Senior Toast was so fun, and my table definitely had the most enthusiasm. During the raffle prizes, they would call out ticket numbers and my table would get so excited until they called the next number that didn’t match any of ours. This happened over and over, and we still had so much anticipation each time. After the school-sponsored Senior Toast, my pledge class headed to Los Vaqueros to continue Happy Hour. Los Vaqueros is one of my favorite Fort Worth restaurants. They have amazing chips and salsa (which I could eat all day), good Tex-Mex, and amazing Frogaritas, which are, of course, purple. I have been with the girls in my pledge class since we were freshman, new to TCU and Tau Beta Sigma, and it was wonderful to have a fun night with them. I hope we can get together soon as alumni!

The day before graduation, my roomie Jenna and I picked up our purple caps and gowns. It was so surreal. We kept asking each other “is this really happening?!” I knew that it didn’t feel right to stay in college any longer, but somehow I wasn’t quite ready to leave yet. Our other roomie, Caroline, took pictures of us at all the campus landmarks so that we would get good shots before the crazy rush on graduation day. We took a ton of cute pictures that I LOVE, but I’ll just post a few. We also took my favorite pictures of the three of us at a party that night, which was a fun way for me to hang out with my friends before I graduated and they went home for the summer.

Saturday, May 8, was the big day. I put on my little black graduation dress and headed to lunch at Bistro Louise with my parents, sister, her boyfriend Dillon, and Craig and Terry, who are like uncles to me. We had a lovely lunch, headed up to campus to take a few pictures, and then it was time for the ceremony to begin. It lasted for 2.5 hours, but it went by relatively fast. I was just trying to take it all in. I cheered for my friends, and soon it was my turn to walk across the stage, displayed for everyone on the Jumbotron. I focused on not falling down or losing my hat (which did NOT want to stay on my head). After the ceremony, I was able to take more pictures and greet my best friend of 10 years, Briana, her mom, and my aunt, uncle, cousin, Grandpa, and boyfriend. I felt so blessed to have them all there that day. Then I went to a delicious dinner with Briana and her mom—they were so nice to take me! What a perfect day.

That day, I graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science in Advertising/Public Relations from Texas Christian University. I couldn’t have done it alone though—I had the financial and moral support of my family, guidance from my professors, and the companionship of so many wonderful friends. Four years in college flew by, and I can honestly say they were the best years of my life so far. I know I have many exciting times ahead of me, but I loved the experiences I had at TCU. I can’t imagine having attended any other school. I am excited to see what lies ahead, but I am a Horned Frog for life and will never forget my time spent in college.

Freshman Orientation, 2006

Graduation, 2010

Sunday, June 13, 2010

The Rest of My LAST Semester

Obviously, it’s been a LONG time since I’ve blogged. This semester was amazing, but after spring break things really accelerated and I barely blinked before it was all over. Here are the highlights of the rest of my semester leading up to graduation:

Blend-Off Prize

After winning 2nd place at TCU Alpha Delta Pi’s “mocktail” Blend-Off competition, the committee from my team with Tau Beta Sigma had the privilege of enjoying our fabulous prize—appetizers at Del Frisco’s Dallas and dinner and dessert at Del Frisco’s in Fort Worth. The other seven lucky ladies and I felt like princesses! We were picked up in a limo and driven to Dallas, where the staff served us delicious appetizers and a special drink called a “Prickly Pear Horned Frog” in the wine cellar. They were so friendly and accommodating, and the drink was delicious. The two Del Frisco’s locations were competing to see who could serve us a better “mocktail,” and we were totally impressed with our first drink. We then headed to Fort Worth and had amazing dinners and desserts, as well as a Passion Fruit Soda. I loved both drinks and had difficulty choosing when it was time to vote and, sure enough, the drink competition ended in a tie!

3rd Degree

The 2010 Pirates class transitioned from Taus to Betas at the end of March! They chose me as “Beta of the Year,” and I was so surprised and happy. I loved getting to know each of them and watch them grow as a class and individuals through the challenges they faced. They gave me a cute plate signed by each of them, and it is now proudly displayed on my shelf at home. I absolutely loved my Pink! Family line this year. My Little Ashley, Granddaughter Kayla Dunlap, Grandlittle Audrey Jensen, and great-grandlittle Callie Williams mean the world to me. I am soo proud of them and can’t wait to meet the newest member(s) of our family next year!


I loved spending time with my family for a long Easter weekend, especially now that Grandpa has moved from Tennessee to Texas!

TBS/KKY Convention
Every year, my music service sorority, Tau Beta Sigma, and our co-fraternity, Kappa Kappa Psi, has a joint convention for a weekend where we attend sessions about music, service, and the workings of our organization, have a dinner and awards banquet, and enjoy fun with our own chapters and other schools. The various KKY & TBS chapters are divided into districts, and we are in the Southwest one. This was my last one to attend, and it was at Baylor University in Waco. To sum it up well, here is an article I wrote about convention for the Spring 2010 edition of "Sigma Story," the TBS alumni newsletter that I created:
"The ladies of Beta Delta spent the weekend of April 9-11 at Baylor University in Waco for Southwest District Convention, bringing Tau Turtle with them and
leaving with an award, fun memories, and new knowledge about their organization.
Tau Turtle, a large wooden turtle that represents the mascot of Tau Beta Sigma, was given to Beta Delta at last year’s convention at LSU for showing the most spirit of the chapters present. After keeping Tau for a year, the chapter added a purple cart to Tau to make him easier to transport and carefully watched the other
chapters to see who would be taking Tau home next. They selected the Theta Theta chapter.
To fit with the convention’s theme of “Leave Your Mark,” Beta Delta’s scrapbook included baby pictures of all members along with updated photos. The chapter was given the award of “Best Scrapbook” at the banquet. Thanks to the work of the Ways & Means committee, they earned nearly $600 from the sale of their famous multi-colored “Skittles Shirts,” TBS/KKY face tattoos, and crafts.
Sisterhood was strengthened as well through workshops and sessions about music and membership, and Beta Delta started a game of “Ride That Pony” on Saturday after lunch that soon included dozens of other TBS/KKY members. It was a fun weekend for all that went, and next year the chapter will head to the University of Oklahoma for 2011 District Convention!"

A large portion of my semester was spent working on my huge project for my Strategic Communications Campaigns class. Basically, we were divided up into groups and all given the same assignment-- come up with a full advertising campaign for Mega 107.5, the CBS-owned Spanish radio station in DFW. We were not given many stipulations- just a budget and told to increase awareness and listernship of the station. It was a duanting task, but my team worked hard, learned a lot, and had so much fun together throughout the process. We called ourselves "Sentidos," and I couldn't have asked for a better team. We were lucky enough to present our campaign to the CBS Radio executives on the 10th floor of their building in Dallas. We were so nervous, but it went really well and we finished in 2nd place and so proud of what we had created. I miss spending my time with this talented group!

Me- Account Planner
Mary Dries- Account Executive
Danielle Balzer- Account Executive/Creative
Tim Halperin- Media Planner
Kelsey McDaniel- Creative

Band Formal
My senior year TCU Band Formal was a little different because it was held on campus instead of at a hotel in downtown Fort Worth, but it ended up being really nice. The ballroom was pretty and definitely convenient, and as usual we had a fabulous slide show, dancing, and good food. It was weird going up and being recognized as a senior and receiving my present... wasn't i JUST starting out in TCU Band? I wore a pretty pink dress and brought Alex, who has been my amazing band formal date for 6 band formals now (including high school). Overall, it was a perfect evening.

Beta Retreat
My very last event for TBS was Senior Beta Retreat. What an incredible night. I can't give away much of what goes on at this event since it's mostly a secret, but I willed many of my TBS possessions, such as t-shirts, down to the younger girls. It's like one "last hoorah" for us seniors, and it was a very emotional evening. Joining, and staying in, Tau Beta Sigma was one of the best decisions I made in college. I made incredible friendships and memories in this organization that I will treasure for the rest of my life.

Coming up next- graduation!