...sitting in my office, bored at 11:15pm. I should be studying, or reading, or at least cleaning my kitchen but I am not.

I'm thinking maybe I'll resurrect this blog and see if anyone still checks it. We'll see.


  1. I'm now in grad school Down South, just started in August and it's going well so far.
  2. Finally have my own place, and I'm loving it.
  3. Downside: am now living 900 miles away from bf and most of my friends from college. So that sucks.
  4. But am making many new and awesome friends out here (though they all talk funny, haha).
And that is really all for tonight. If I'm going to get back into this blogging thing I'm going to have to do it slowly. Baby steps, people.



Yes We Can!

1. Watch this video!

2. Watch this other video!

3. If you live in Wisconsin (or Hawaii), vote for Obama in your primary one week from tomorrow! Hooray!

love, allie


Holy shit! I posted again!

Sitting in the apartment, listening to the This American Life podcast. Sigh... I love This American Life way more than I should. But hey, someone's gotta do it.

Ok, so... it's been a while since I last posted. Let's see, what have I been up to since then? Well, on Friday I visited Grad School of Choice. It was a good experience, I understand a whole lot more now than I did before about the program, but I still feel kind of lost. Here was the scenario: about half of the prospective students at this open house thing were already affiliated with lab groups, ready to get started on their thesis/dissertation. The other half was like me - wondering around with lost, blank looks on their faces. The thing is, I need to get a professor to agree to be my adviser and take me on into their lab in order for me to gain admission. I feel that I made some great connections, but there are still lots of ifs. I don't really know what those professors thought of me or whether they want to take me on or not. Uggg... applying for graduate school must be the most stressful thing I've ever done.

Oh well, at least classes are easy. Ridiculously easy, in fact. Hooray!

In better news, the lab I TA for went really well today. It's called Biodiversity, but I like to call it Baby Bio. Basically, it's a biology class for non-majors who have been made to sign up for a science class, against their will, in line with the whole liberal arts education. But I love it. It makes me feel like I know a whole lot about biology, even though I only have about 3 years under my belt. I know it's terrible, but I feel so much better about my scientific abilities after this lab than after I talk to my professors. Besides, these kids know they love biology, they just need someone to prod it out of them. You'll see - all these kiddies are going to be science majors soon enough. Anyway, today we were looking at protists under the microscope. They were finding live ones swimming around, and they got so excited! It was really cute.

Well, it seems that's all for today. This weekend should be fun, I'm excited.

love, allie


Back in the States, Part III

Here I am, sitting at Best Coffee Shop Ever (hence forth referred to as BCSE), where I should be working on lots of things.... graduate school shit, Environmental Chemistry homework... but instead I'm blogging. Just for you!

Before I finish my blogger trilogy of Panama, I'm going to discuss the awesomeness that occurred last night. As CL already documented, there was some drunkenness going on. The night started with me, CL, Charles Shaw, and Brokeback Mountain. CL and I decided to have our own personal tribute to the dearly departed Heath Ledger this weekend. We rented our high school favorite, 10 Things I Hate About You, (watched on Thursday!) and our new favorite, Brokeback Mountain. I hadn't seen it until last night, but wow. That was a beautiful movie. I think we're going to watch it again today. CL only stuck around for the first half of it anyway, then she and MW went over to Local Pub to watch and band and engage in various shenanigans... leaving me alone with a 1/2 bottle of 2-buck Chuck and Heath Ledger. Ooh la la.

After finishing the bottle, I went over to Local Pub to meet up with the crew. Fortunately, the band playing was really popular, meaning a big crowd at the pub and lots of friends and fun. Incriminating pictures posted on facebook: check!

But back to what you came for: more pictures of Panama!

So, here we go. We arrived at Bocas del Toro, and immediately fell in love with it. It's fucking beautiful!!! We stayed on Isla Colon, in the province (or state? I'm not really sure) of Bocas del Toro, which is on the Caribbean side of Panama. We stayed at the Smithsonian field station there, and they took good care of us. It's on the inland side of the island, so the water was clear and calm and all of the shorelines are covered in mangrove trees. You can kind of see that in this picture, it's taken of the dock at the Smithsonian station:

While at Bocas, we went batting with a professor from Florida. We went to La Gruta, a bat cave and also a grotto to Mary (interesting combination, I know). The story goes that a woman was washing her clothes in the stream that comes out of the cave and saw an image of Mary. I say that it is pretty nasty to be washing clothes in a stream full of bat shit, but whatever. Anyway, the area there is absolutely beautiful, too.

And while we were there we saw some really awesome bugs! Stink bugs? Maybe? If anyone knows, speak up!

On the grounds of the station there's this little pond. In the pond lives a few caymans. Here's one of them! They're so cute. Aww.

Back to Gamboa... here's a shot of the rain forest from the back of our truck. Riding in the trucks through the rain forest felt a little bit too much like Jurassic Park... but it was really cool.

Then we went over to Barro Colorado Island. It's a whole island owned by the Smithsonian and used for research. So... it's pretty cool. We went on a hike through the rain forest there, and it was amazing. Even the ferry ride over was cool. We had to get there at some ungodly hour of the morning, but (bonus!) we got to see the sunrise over the Panama Canal. And that, my friends, is fucking awesome.

I had about a million and a half pictures of things I saw on the hike through Barro Colorado. Here's my favorite. That's a big spider!

So, that's all the awesome biology-licious photos I'm going to post. Then we saw the locks at the Panama Canal. Sure, it was cool, but whatever. Not as cool as huge-ass spiders and monkeys. Seriously. But here she is, in all her glory:

And that wraps up my Panama story. If you want anymore info, go on and e-mail me. Bottom line: it was amazing. Yes, you should go. No, you should not wait. Go on, get up and go! Before even more of the rain forest is cut down (cattle-ranching bastards).

love, allie


Back in the States, Part II; or, Holy Hell! What Easy Classes I Have!

Dear Blog Reader,

Here comes part 2 of my Panama experience. This edition comes after meeting with the Panama Boys at Local Pub for some drinks and burgers. Yum. Now allie is a bit tipsy. Please forgive her.

So, if I hadn't mentioned it enough in previous entries... Panama was fucking awesome. And Grace is right. I wouldn't be able to explain the full awesomeness of it unless you gave me approximately three hours and bought me a pitcher of Spotted Cow at Local Pub. Until then, thou shalt never know.

But for all you busy-bodies... here's the super condensed, Cliff-Notes version:

We spent most of our time in Gamboa, a small town in the canal zone. From there, we were able to travel into the rain forest quite easily. That's where we saw the howler monkey I showed a picture of in my previous post. Also, we went up into the canopy crane in the Parque Natural Metropolitano. Here's a super-cool picture!!

So, you get in a little basket. This basket is hoisted up the crane, then out to the tippy-tippy end. Then you see awesome stuff! Like this sloth!

That was probably the best thing about Gamboa. Spider sampling was pretty sweet, too. Pictures coming with Part III. After spending about a week, we headed off to Bocas del Toro....

Yeah! That's our plane!

Ok, I'm going to stop tipsy-blogging.

Do not fret. I will have plenty of time to blog these next couple months. I have no homework. Ever. What?

love, allie

PS - I hate Miley Cyrus! Sorry CL, M and Grace!


Back in the States, Part I

I'm back, y'all!

So, one week at home, two weeks in sunny Panama, one more week at home, and here I am; back from my long absence. Classes started up again on Monday (damn you small liberal arts colleges for not observing Martin Luther King Jr. Day)... I wasn't really ready for it, but that's ok.

Here's the beginning of my recap from my wonderful, wonderful holiday to Panama...

Back story: Lucky me! I was selected to take a travel course to Panama through the Biology/Environmental Science department of my school. It was slightly over two weeks, leaving just after Christmas and returning on Jan. 12th.

Going to Panama was probably the highlight of college for me. The trees, the ocean, the monkeys, the spiders... Panama Cerveza...

Ahhh, the good life.

We were there for a little over 2 weeks, mostly staying at Smithsonian field stations. We got to frolic in the rain forest, listen to howler monkeys, snorkel near coral reefs, catch spiders... You know, normal stuff.

I took a shit-load of pictures while there and my computer is being a little fussy about uploading them. I'll post some in my "Back in the States, Part II" post.

The best part of my trip, I think, was that we got to celebrate New Year's in Panama. We went over to this swanky resort nearby to our field station, drank Panama Cerveza, and danced to Van Halen's "Panama." Haha, a little overkill I guess, but at the time (and after a few cervezas) we thought it was awesome.

My favorite thing we saw in Panama: howler monkeys!

Ok, yes, that's a picture I took. My camera had one crappy zoom for being so new. Camera with a decent zoom = #1 need for next trip to Panama.

Now that I'm back in the States, back in Wisconsin (ugg), I'm having trouble re-adjusting to winter. Especially since the temperatures didn't get above zero for a few days there. Classes have started, too. Good thing most of my classes are easy this semester. It's my last semester as an undergrad; I don't think I could handle another hard one.

On tap for this semester:

  • Oceanography - biggest. joke. ever. Today we learned that there are 1000 meters in a kilometer. 7th grade anyone?
  • Art History - fun, awesome professor, and only 1 paper. Hooray!
  • Environmental Chemistry - my last required class, taught by my advisor. Nice.
That's it! Hooray!

I'll update more about Panama soon, I promise.

love, allie

ps - I'm sorry for not updating for so long. Naughty girl. I missed you guys :)


la la la... no more school, but other stuff. A.K.A longest title to a blog entry ever

Sitting in the public library at home.

Working, or not, on my essays.

Chatting with grace.

I can't wait for Christmas! Arrgg... being home is not as fun as I would have liked. None of my high school friends have called, but then again I haven't called any of them either. Christmas shopping, Christmas baking, Christmas cleaning! It all needs to be done... but then again all of that is way more fun than school for me right now.

I guess it's up to me to bake for Christmas this year. My mom is an excellent cook - but she doesn't bake. We're having the whole big family over and I've been put in charge of all desserts, cookies, and candy. Eeee!

More updates later! Well, we'll see. My parents still live in the stone age and only have dial-up. Doing anything on the internet can be very frustrating.

Must go! Christmas beckons!

love, allie


I'm done!

Done with finals!

Done with this stressful semester!

Now I have time to really crack down on those grad school applications... and maybe do a bit of Christmas shopping. Also - get ready for my trip to Panama!

Spending New Year's Eve in Panama is going to be the highlight of my year. It sucks that I'll be out of town, sounds like there's going to be some good parties here, but still... It's New Year's, it's Panama, it doesn't get any better than that.

Everyone's going home for the break, it's a bit bittersweet. Some of my friends are graduating at semester, like Blondie who stayed here the past few days. It's sad because I know it'll never be the same for us. We used to live together, you know? And now it's coming to the end. Yes, this seems a bit like the beginning of the end. I'm scared to graduate, but excited at the same time. It kind of feels like I've finally gotten comfortable here and now it's time to move on again. But at the same time there's a lot of things I wish I'd done differently here, and I'm ready to start a new phase of my life. For instance, I wish I'd made more friends, I wish I'd been more outgoing, I wish I'd taken more pictures, I wish I'd kissed a few more boys (but I do love my bf), I wish I'd spent a little more time hanging out with the girls, I wish I'd gone to Europe, I actually do with I'd spent a little more time studying... the list goes on.

Rrr... no more sentimentality. Must go. Must pack. Must clean. Must go to a movie with CL (yay!).

I'm going home tomorrow, so blog posts will be less frequent. I've got shit to do, people!

love, allie


Pedestrians = friends (not roadkill)

Holy shit, people of Wisconsin.

There's this law. It says that, while driving, you need to YIELD to PEDESTRIANS in the CROSSWALK. I, as a frequent pedestrian, would greatly appreciate you doing so. The rest of the pedestrians would appreciate that as well. The city realized this, and decided to put a big, fancy, bright yellow sign in the middle of the crosswalk reading "STATE LAW: YIELD TO PEDESTRIANS WITHIN CROSSWALK," in the hopes that the people of this city would obey that sign.

They did not obey the sign.

In fact, they RAN OVER IT.

Yep, that's the sign on my street. Poor sign, all tattered up from being RUN OVER by a careless Wisconsinite driver. I especially like the nice chunk taken out of the picture of the pedestrian by the "incident." Is this what Wisconsin thinks of its pedestrians?

I ask: if a fluorescent yellow sign can sit in the middle of the crosswalk each day, in the same spot, and it gets run over... what will be the fate of me, crossing at that same crosswalk everyday on my way to school?

More than being LAW, isn't it just polite to yield to pedestrians, especially if it is snowing or windy or cold or raining, or otherwise uncomfortable to be outside? Especially since they are not releasing excess amounts of carbon into the atmosphere by walking, but your car does by driving it?

This is my rant for the day. Yield to pedestrians!

love, allie


New haircut, procrastination part II, and an early morning freakout

My new haircut was... less exciting than expected. I only got a trim, and then a few more layers (for "movement" as my stylist said). But come to think of it, I kind of liked my longer, all-one-length hair better. Oh well, it will grow out soon. I don't hate it, just kind of regretting my decision to get it cut. My stylist styled it funny, too. You know how when you go to the salon and you get your haircut, and the lady blow dries it for you... it just never looks the same as when you do it yourself? I mean, not that I'm the pro here or anything. Just the way she styled it was very... not me. All straight and curled under. I'm more of a wild and wavy type myself.

Yesterday... did not get done what I needed to get done, which equals more stress for today. I was laying in bed at around 1:15 or so this morning, not really sleeping, just running things through my head... when I suddenly freaked out. Let me recap for you:


I was somehow totally convinced that Dr. H, my most important reference for grad school, had finished all of his work at school and was leaving early on his way out of the country to visit somewhere tropical (which he has a tendency to do every break - I want this man's lifestyle!). That would mean that I wouldn't be able to use him as a reference and, in my crazy half-sleep, decided that I would never get into grad school and would have to work at McDonald's for the rest of my life.

I jumped straight up in bed, called the bf, made him come over and tell me that it was going to be ok, then yelled at him for just telling me that to calm me down, and that he didn't really know if Dr. H was gone by now or not. Made the bf leave my apartment, still mad at him.

Texted CW, a friend in the environmental science department and cohort on Panama trip, asking him if he knew where Dr. H was and if he was still in town. Finally received text message back from CW at around 1:45 saying that he was "over 90% sure that Dr. H is still around" and something to the fact that Dr. H loves me anyways and would run home from said tropical destination to fill out reference letter for me.

Still not satisfied, I went to my computer, checked the finals schedule, saw that Dr. H still had to administer a final exam this week. Decided life would go on. Went back to sleep.


Then today I went over to Dr. H's office, found him there and gave him the materials for references. He was very nice, "Of course I'll fill these out for you - I'm so glad you want to go to grad school! Have a merry Christmas!"

Life is ok now. Must not freak out anymore.

love, allie