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Mandatory Moment of Nostalgia from a Graduating Senior: Part II

Bet ya didn’t see this one coming, huh? ;)

(Yesterday morning, I kicked off the week with a look back at my four years as a student at Northern Arizona University and all of the shenanigans that filled my freshman year. If you missed it, you can go ahead and catch up here: Mandatory Moment of Nostalgia from a Graduating Senior: Part I)

New Blog Post Mandatory Moment of Nostalgia from a Graduating Senior

Sophomore year began drastically different than the previous. Freshman year of college, I was giddy with the excitement of possibilities that come from moving to a new state and not knowing a single person. The summer before sophomore year, I began the medical process of correcting the venous malformation on the left side of my face. The initial surgeries were much more extensive than my parents and I had envisioned. Because of some complications with the nerves as well as just the sheer magnitude of dealing with blood vessels, I was not able to train or compete in cross country. The sport that I loved, and a major contributing factor to my decision to attend NAU, was temporarily out of the question and I looked for an alternative activity to fill my time (and my energy).

And thus, a blog was born. I launched Strong Like My Coffee in July 2012, with very little technical experience and no real long-term vision. But here we are today, so something must have worked out. Let’s pick up where we left off, shall we?

2012: Sophomore Year:

During the beginning of sophomore year, this blog became my project. I took pictures of my avocado toast and my running shoes and learned how to edit pictures. I was required to attend cross country practices but I could not participate and that is the truest form of heartbreak that I have ever experienced. Even my pumpkin was a runner.

Stick Figure Runner Pose  Stronglikemycoffee.comOne of the biggest blessings of sophomore year was my roommate, Fernanda! When I decided to live in the on-campus suites, I selected random roommate and crossed my fingers. We bonded immediately over episodes of Pretty Little Liars and the rest of the year was like a big sleepover after that! We had movie marathons, cooked dinners, and scheduled classes together. She had littered our room with balloons for my birthday and made the sweetest care package ever for my winter surgery in New York.

Fernanda's Birthday Party

Unlike the Freshman Year post, I can share some highlight blog posts that I wrote as a sophomore. Bear with me on some of these….I’d only been blogging for a few months. Even though I’m still pretty amateur at it, I’d like to think I’ve grown a little ;)

Straight-Grubbin: that time we took a free trip down to Sedona because neither of us had cars on campus, nevermind the fact that it included a few hours of manual labor ;)

Well of course there is the epic Mt. Humphries (mis)adventure which was probably the beginning of the end of my love with snow at that point.

Another college-y night with a “London Olympics” themed Ping Pong Party with (Coach) Jack Daniels. (<– Confession: I LOL’d re-reading that post)

I took a beloved overnight Amtrak ride home for a weekend in February to spend A Day in LA. I will never, never miss taking the train home.

And after a serious setback after my surgeries, I trained harder than ever to qualify for the conference championships for outdoor track and field. My 5k in California qualified me for the 10k in Portland, OR where we concluded sophomore year with a serious celebration: Conference Championships

Tucson Track Meet (

Funny College Moment: (well, it’s funny now.) One night, I was on a first date with a guy that I kind of liked. We ended up staying up pretty late, talking, eating ice cream and watching movies (PG, I promise haha). I had my phone on silent (um good date etiquette rule #1). When I didn’t answer any of my mom’s texts, she called me. When I didn’t answer or return her phone calls, she called Fernanda, worried, asking her to go find me. (Hi, mom! Love you!) Fernanda called Kerri and the two literally went on a search party for me. They got our RA involved. Ahhhh she’ll never live that helicopter moment down.

Sophomore Year Shenanigans | Stronglikemycoffee.comAnd the rest is a blur, much like freshman year.

BTO overtook Yogurt U as our #1 froyo shop hangout spot and I probably consumed about 84 pounds of frozen yogurt (mostly toppings, duh.)

I dyed my hair brown. (May have cried about it.)

Nicholas Sparks came to our school for a guest lecture about the inspiration behind all of his successful books.

My healthy lifestyles class required that we participate in one extra curricular event from a list of pre-approved options and I picked Over-Eaters Anonymous. At the time, I was a track athlete running 60 miles a week and whipping up spinach-packed protein smoothies in my dorm room….it was an awkward experience to say the least. (Though I could probably use that class during the peak of finals week now though ;) )

Sophomore Year Froyo Hangout | Stronglikemycoffee.comAnd just like that, we were juniors. So I’ll see you back again tomorrow, same time/same place? You bring the coffee. :)