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Thursday, June 5, 2014

June 5th Challenge

Hi it’s Christina –

Artwork by Chris Madden
Good Morning! After two really hot sunny days – LOVE IT – in Central Jersey, we are having a cool, rainy, day. It’s a gentle rain, the perfect rain for my garden. I like when Mother Nature waters for me. Not that I mind watering, but over the winter, our hose developed a small leak and my husband hasn’t fixed it yet. So, I have to turn off the hose at the house every time I use it. Again, not a big deal except to get to the shut off, I have to go through some brush, and inevitably, I come out with a tick on me. UGH!! Something else my hubby has to do – spray the yard for ticks!

I don’t have to go into work today until one, so hopefully I’ll be able to get some stuff done for the party beforehand. If I could get the chocolates finished – well, actually started – that would be good. I don’t know why I do stuff like this to myself. I
really don’t enjoy making chocolates. I complain every time I have to make them, and swear I will never do it again…but I do. I’m pretty sure this is a clear definition of insanity.

I forgot to tell you, I picked up Lys from the airport on Tuesday night. No, your memory is not faulty. She was supposed to be picked up on Friday. Tyler got sick, and his surgery was postponed, so they came home early. I feel so bad for him. You have to psyche yourself up for surgery, even minor surgery, and then for it to get cancelled is almost more traumatizing than having the surgery itself. The poor kid!

One thing they did manage to do before they left was to visit High Point University. Lys is in love with the school. They met with the admissions counselor and he took them on a tour of the school. Unfortunately, he did not know their transfer paperwork was in already, or he would have had their acceptance packages ready for them when they arrived.
High Point University

Did I mention Lys wants to transfer colleges? Between not feeling challenged with the classes at Champlain and having the worst winter in a hundred years, Lys wanted out. I can’t say I blame her. A plus for us is, before any grants or scholarships, High Point is almost $10K less than Champlain. On the negative side, it’s an eight and a half hour drive (ten with breaks) as opposed to the six hour drive to Vermont. There is no way I could do a round trip in a day, so that means when and if I go down, it would require an overnight stay.

Honestly though, I was surprised my daughter had picked a school in Vermont. She is not a fan of the cold, nor does she enjoy being bundle up. She does not do any winter sports. Other than the school’s curriculum, I’m really not sure why she picked Champlain.
crime house

High Point appears to be a good choice. They have both of Lys’ majors, and they have had numerous transfer students from Champlain, so the credits she has earned from the “non-conventional” classes should transfer as well, which was a main concern of mine. Their criminal justice degree does appear to be slightly more in depth than the one she was in at Champlain. High Point actually has a “crime house” on campus which they use for hands on experience in crime scene investigation, as well as various other aspects of police training (mock raids and busts, serving warrants, etc.). They also have a course which focuses solely on profiling, which Champlain did not.

We will probably hear in the next week or so if Lys has been accepted to High Point. Between her high school transcripts, her SAT scores, and her college transcripts, we are not anticipating an issue, but I don’t want to jinx it by being over confident. Tyler’s GPA wasn’t quite as high as Lys’, but he’s pretty confident he will get in as well.
Austen Peay

If Lys isn’t accepted to High Point, she will be transferring to her second choice, Austen Peay, which is in Clarksville, TN. (The drive there is over twenty hours and will require three hotel stays round trip.) This is where she was originally headed, but then at the last minute, she got her acceptance to Champlain. Because Lys qualifies for the honors program at Austen Peay, her remaining three years of college combined would cost the same as her one year at Champlain, so I’m not too broken up over how far away it is. A.P. is also an excellent school with excellent programs in my daughter’s majors. Either way, we will not be returning to Vermont.

Okay, I have avoided the chocolates as long as I should. I hope you have a marvelous day, and happy writing!

Your Last Challenge was:

Scenario: At the zoo. A young woman. There is music. Add surprise.

Janie loved the zoo, always had. Her childhood memories were filled with wonderful adventures she had had with her parents and siblings; her brother, her sister and she, mimicking the caged monkeys, and her parents watching, laughing and shaking their heads at their antics. During college, when Janie needed to get away for a little while to clear her head, she would walk to the zoo, sit, watch the animals, and feel her stress simply leave her body.

Janie blamed fate, or the stars, or perhaps destiny, that it was at a zoo where she first met Daniel. It was where they had their first date, and several subsequent dates over the past few years. Today, on the third year anniversary of that first date, they found themselves at the zoo again. Hand in hand, they strolled the paths, wandered from one habitat to the next, and allowed the nearly unnoticed, regional music wash over them.

Daniel had been unusually quiet, and when they reached the big cat section, a favorite for them both, Janie asked him if something was bothering him. He stopped her in front of Thor, the Bengal tiger’s cage, smiled, turned her toward him, and got down on one knee.

Your Next Challenge is (from the writing group):

Use the following: Strangle, Turtle, Soup (it can’t be turtle soup)


You have ten minutes (be honest). There is no right or wrong, just write. Spelling and punctuation don’t count, and NO ONE is allowed to criticize what someone else has written. Go.