That’s All for Now

So I’m DONE! Done with my first year of college! Only four more to go! (Yes I said four). I actually got home on Thursday but I’ve been busy.

All in all, it was a pretty great year! ย I don’t really have much to say I guess… I apologize for not getting this post up earlier but I don’t think it really matters at this point.

So, to wrap of this year, I’m gonna do something classic and list a bunch of things that I learned in college this year:

1. Everybody looks ridiculous running around campus with a back pack sometimes it has to be done.

2. All-nighters are a real thing. Not for me, though because I didn’t want to have to deal with that so I just did my work on time like some weird person.

3. Campus is the only place where it takes to cross campus with a car than by foot during class changes.

4. When they say that Penn State alumni are everywhere, they are not exaggerating. When I tell adults that I’m going to Penn State, there is a 99.9% chance that they went there, or know someone who went there.

5. Walking up Shortilage is brutal. Walking up Shortilage in below-freezing temperatures is even worse.

6. Hats are essential to survive the winter. And the winter is brutal. State College weather is no joke. One day it’ll be beautiful and the next day will be winter jacket cold.

7. Getting involved is actually a good idea. There’s a crazy amount of stuff to do!

8. Everything is and acronym. Have you gone to the UHS? Did you get your GH and GS credits? CAS is the worst. Are you living in an SLO? Which number is my PSUID?

9. Sleep deprivation is also real. I may not have had any all-nighters but that doesn’t mean I was well rested.

10. College is great! I wasn’t sure what I expected starting out with this big, new adventure but I am very happy with how it’s going.

So I guess that’s all for now! See you next fall on the new season of “Zoe’s College Adventure”!!!

I’m Having Test Anxiety Anxiety

Well, class is officially done! Papers have been written and presentations have been terribly given. All that’s left now is…FINALS.

Ah, finals week.Where every student on campus is cooped up studying, trying to ignore the enticing golden rays of sunshine dancing on the ground outside. Trying to study while trying not to think about that new show on Netflix or the laundry that needs done or the stuff that needs packed up. That familiar smell of sweat and desperation hangs in the air like a dense fog.

How poetic. Anyway, I had a wonderful semester!

Last night was the Landscape Architecture Student Society (LASS) banquet which was fun! Plus we got to eat fancy food which you never want to pass up as a college student. Here are my lovely friends walking back from the banquet:


Today I cleaned out my desk in studio which was kind of sad. But, of course I’m keeping most of my projects from the year because I am a nostalgic hoarder. (sorry Mom).ย  haha.


Near-End of Semester Panic: Part 2

One Day in New York City

A few Thursdays ago, my all the landscape architecture majors in the class LARCH 60 went to New York City to look at parks and such. My advice to you is that if you are ever thinking about visiting 18 or more different parks throughout the city in 7 hours, your enjoyment of those parks will be greatly diminished by your lack of ability to actually stay in one place for more than 10 minutes. Just stay for a weekend because otherwise, you’ll be running around like a crazy person (or at least power walking around) and you will not be able to stay very long in any of the places you visit – which is what we had to do.

Of course the first thing we did was visit Olmstead’s legacy of landscape architecture, Central Park. Luckily, we visited on a beautiful day and there were people outside.

Here is a gallery of pictures in a random order from my day!


Near-End of Semester Panic: Part 1

New Projects and Adventures

Some stuff has happened while I was away from my blog.

First of all, it is weird that the semester is sorta almost over. It definitely went much faster than last semester.


In studio, we are knee-deep into Project three. Our assignment is to design a space using land form. Our ‘rip-and-tear’ models are made of clay this time, although I use cardboard structures underneath so I don’t have to use as much clay. Now, let me tell you about this clay we have to use. It’s super soft and easy to work with but the smell! The smell is putrid and it doesn’t come off. My hands still faintly smell even after a day. Even worse, it sticks on your clothes so your whole person just wreaks of clay-smell. Anyway, here are some process models.

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Team Uke

Something more exciting: I joined the ukulele club (TeamUKE) and get to design their logo and website! Yay! I think they just started last semester and its very exciting! Here is the link to the website I made if you are interested! –> Team UKE

Club Gymnastics Nationals in Philly

I am currently in Philly for club gymnastics nationals. It is pretty cool. We finished our first day of competition and finals is on Saturday, although we won’t know what everyone has qualified for until after Friday.

The above paragraph is no longer relevant since nationals was a few weeks ago. Good news though, both the A and B team for girls qualified for finals!

Philly was fun! on Friday when we weren’t competing, we walked around the city and look at some historical buildings. There was this cute little historic alleyway – Elfreth’s Alley – with tiny houses facing a cobblestone street that I loved.

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We also passed classical historic sites like Independence Hall and of course, I went to the Reading Terminal Market.

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Finals was amazing! There were so many teams there, it was crazy and so much fun! Here are some pictures so you can see the crazy amount of people who still think gymnastics is a good idea:


I also qualified for finals on bars and floor and I am very pleased with how I did. People underestimate the skill level of club gymnasts because at nationals, there were so many amazing team. Anyway, I got 8th on bars and 2nd on floor! Shout out to my mother for driving up for for qualifiers and to my whole family for coming to see every one of my meets this season! I love you!


It’s been a ling while blah blah blah

Spring break was nice. I didn’t do much. Some gymnastics practice at my home gym and I got to see my lovely teammates ๐Ÿ™‚ I also ate a lot of real food.

Now we’re back! Actually, we’ve been back for almost two weeks. I had intended to post when I got back but, well… I didn’t. Anyway! Here’s what’s been going down!

Studio wise: We’re finishing up our second project, which is to create two transitional spaces that evoke certain feelings and then build a model of it and a presentation board that explains everything. I will post my board along with my model so I don’t have to explain anything.

(here is said board)


Here is a plan view of my model:


What else… Oh our home meet was last weekend and I won everything! haha! Just kidding I got fourth place on vault but I got first on bars, beam, floor, and all-around. The best part was, instead of medals, we got cookies!


Also, I am watching (actually I finished watching) this new series on Netflix called Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” and it’s super funny!

If you haven’t noticed already, this semester has been way busier than last semester.

But to be honest, most of my free nights are spent watching TV and playing the ukulele.

Mastering the Microwave

Well, not incredibly exciting has happened, but spring break is soon! Yay! In less than a week, I will get to go home and see my pets (and my family).

Meanwhile, studio is moving along well. I have not been on top of things as much in the explanation or documentation of my projects but I really enjoy the models I’m making. Here are some picture of models that I have made with little to no explanation of what they are supposed to be for.

Our second project is getting into it’s final stages. The end goal is to design 2 sequential spaces that make the user experience certain feelings. Here is my “rip and tear” model:


Also this unrelated set of six models that I made that, when put together, look like a swirly thing:


On Saturday night, my roommate and I decided to make ourselves dinner instead of going to the dining hall. It was quite a set up. We had all three microwaves running in our dorm. We made vegetables with garlic, meatballs, spaghetti with meatballs and sauce, couscous, and mashed potatoes. We actually made enough to fill up three people. It was quite impressive, I think.



Oh, an something very exciting happened today. Well, it would’ve been exciting if it had impacted me in any way (which it didn’t). But Penn State actually cancelled all classes after 4:00 PM today because of the ice. This is incredibly suprising since, I’m pretty sure the university believes they have incredibly hardy students, willing to brave any conditions to get to class without complaint. (Of course this is incredibly false because we are college students who are very lazy and complain about everything).

Also, I forgot to mention that I went to THON. Here is a picture of the “largest student-run philanthropy event” or something along the lines of that. Whatever their shtick is, it’s an impressive happening. I did not stay for that long.


A Garden Field Trip in February

So last Thursday, the freshman LARCHies (that’s what us landscape architects call ourselves) went on a field trip to Longwood Gardens. It’s somewhere in Pennsylvania. The lovely day started with getting up at 5:45 in the morning. It was cold and icy. The bus driver said that he had been to Longwood Gardens before and that it was really nice, but of course, he went in May or June. You know, when there are plants growing and it’s not cold. But no. We went on Thursday, when it was cold, and plantless. Actually, there were indoor gardens to walk around in which were pretty cool.

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There was also this really cool indoor green wall.



I also took this fancy picture:



After wandering through the various gardens, we visited the gift shop where – true to our major – wIMG_5872e bought plants to keep in studio. Unfortunately, all the widows (they all open on some sort of mechanical automated system) had opened during one of the coldest nights of the week and had froze all of our plants. It was so cold in the building that my water bottle had also froze. Sadly, I don’t have a picture of my plant before the incident but I do have one from after.


Cardboard Models and Blanket Forts

So since my last post, some exciting stuff has happened. I went to my first ever club gymnastics meet at Ohio State. I also went to my second ever club gymnastics meet at JMU. Both meets went very well in my opinion. At Ohio State, I got 1st on bars, 1st on floor, and 3rd in the all around and Penn State Men’s and Women’s teams got FIRRRST! woo! Very exciting! The JMU meet wasn’t as great for the girls team (we came in third), but not too shabby I say. I got 2nd in the all around! yay!

Here are some pictures of me doing my thing at Ohio State:








So studio is getting very exciting. We are doing actual work! By that, I mean building models, which I like to do. We are learning about different “archetypal landscapes,” and building ‘rip and tear’ models to demonstrate each of the archetypes we learned. There are six:

Sky: It is a space that feels open and free, kinda like a sky on the ground


Sea: A landscape where you feel immersed


Promontory: One landscape that sticks out into another landscape


Harbor: The viewer feels safe (the back is protected), looking out at an expanding landscape


Island: Probably self explanatory. A patch of one landscape type, surrounded completely by another


Cave: A protected landscape with a strong overhead plane and a controlled view to the outside


I thoroughly enjoy my stick figure scale people.

Surprisingly, not much has happened in the last…3 weeks? Something like that. The only thing that happened was that I realized what a terrible mistake it is to go home for two weekends in a row. Why? Well I missed these two back-to-back weekends for meets. Both times, I erroneously believed that I would actually do anything productive over the weekend. I did nothing. I don’t have much of an excuse for that, but I was tired.

In other news, I have joined the PSU Ukulele Club.

Also, I have been gradually expanding the blanket fort I have created at the head of my bed. Here is a picture:


If you’re wondering, I am building this blanket for to block out desk lights when I’m trying to sleep and my fellow roommates are not. So far, it is working.

Things and Stuff

Yeah, yeah, yeah. I think we’re past the point where I need to apologize for not posting for so long because by now you may have noticed a severe lack of posts for this semester. I suppose that is due to the fact that I am taking a full load and, I gotta tell you, a full load is basically like pushing a wheel barrel full of bricks up a steep hill. If you stop to rest for too long, the wheel barrel will roll all the way back down the hill. (Ok that may be an over-exaggeration…).

Any who! So may be you have heard, but Sate College is getting a lot of snow. This is very exciting for me because I love snow and even though I live well within a day’s driving distance from State College, we receive much less snow at home.

Here are some pictures of said snow:



Nice ๐Ÿ™‚

So here’s what I’ve been doing for studio:

First of all, I finished my final ‘board’ for our first project, which was looking for point, line, plane, and volume in a space. You don’t really have to understand what the assignment was, just look at my pretty layout!




And now, I’m working in wood shop making a stupid box. We have to make this box to be ‘certified’ to use to wood shop. I am not very good at wood shop, partly because I’m afraid of the table saw.

Here is my box so far (I’m not done yet):


But what an artsy picture!

In other news, I am competing atย my first club gymnastics meet this weekend and I’m very excited!

The Second Longest Week of My Life

If you recall, I titled one of my blog posts during the first week of the first semester “The Longest Week of My Life: Day Three,” so this is me being clever and bringing the title back for the first week of my second semester. Only this time, the week went faster! I apologize for not writing sooner but I had lots of stuff to do. Not much happened over the week. Disappointingly little actually. But I really like all my classes and professors. I also made some delicious pasta (see last post).

Well competition season is coming up for club gymnastics which means that I actually have to get my butt moving. And I must say that it is going pretty well if I do say so myself. I haven’t taken any pictures or videos yet because that’s how hard I’m working haha

Studio? Oh yes, that class that I always have something to say about? As a matter of fact, I do have stuff to say. We are doing a project on finding points, lines, planes, and volumes in the landscape that were intentionally done by the designers of said landscapes. We had to take pictures around campus which sounds like a pretty normal task until you realize that people get really confused when you’re walking around taking pictures of shrubs and sidewalks. It was also really cold out the day we went out to take pictures. I had to take a few pictures and then quickly put my hands in my pockets to make sure I could still feel them.

Here are my pictures:

Pretty exciting stuff.

I also took a picture of this cute squirrel: