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After a wonderful couple of days in Winston-Salem, I drove a little further north to my alma mater – Elon University.  It has been 4 years since I last visited so I thought I was due for a reunion.  I am convinced it is the most beautiful campus in the country and there is not a club nor extracurricular activity that they don’t offer.  When I was a student, I had my hands in a lot of different pots, so I was always busy.  I was a RA, Writing Center Tutor, assistant in the Multicultural Center, a member of Sigma Tau Delta, a writer for The Pendulum, and a sister of Alpha Chi Omega sorority. Yes, I was a nerd, and yes, I loved every minute of it.   Somehow I even found a way to spend a semester in Paris.  It was magical.

I stayed with one of my favorite Elon grads, Gavin.  She has visited me quite a few times in the various places I have lived over the years so I knew I owed her one.  We have some fun memories from back in the day and reminisced over margaritas at a local Mexican dive.  She now works for the university and just graduated with her MBA from Elon.  I considered the margaritas celebratory.  When we got back to Gavin’s we digressed to college girls, painting our nails, jamming to Dispatch on her IPod and sharing the latest celeb gossip.  It was perfect.  I must admit, though, Pinterest did manage to dominate a portion of our conversation.  It was only inevitable as Gavin is just as obsessed as I am about DIY and home craftiness.  She has some great decor in her apartment and I definitely walked away with some new semi-stolen ideas.  Check out her digs:

She got the shutters from a salvaged antique shop in Greensboro and the hanging window that separates her dining room is from one of the old buildings at Elon.  Her kitchen is bright and fun, with some neat elements like the Staten and Ellis Island sign above the cabinets.  I made myself right at home in her art/guest room.  Don’t you just love the chalkboard wall?!  She even drew a cute headboard and wrote me a sweet welcome note.

The next day I met my grandlittle, Brittany, for lunch on campus.  I think the last time I had been there was actually when I had dinner with her before I graduated.  She is from LA and also works for the university now.  She’s been recruiting on the east coast but will be moving back out to LA this summer for a new position on the west coast.  It was fun catching up with her and hearing about all of the wonderful things happening in her life.  I will certainly be planning another trip out to LA in the near future…any excuse for me to travel, right?

After lunch I wandered around campus and almost didn’t recognize it.  They have added lots of new buildings and dining halls since I was last here.  The business building was completed my senior year and shows what amazing things they can do with a ton of bricks. The clock still stands in front of the library (left).  The archway of the library is still long and beautiful (right center).  And the Alpha Chi Omega house is as pretty as I left it (bottom right).  I spent a lot of time remembering what it was like as a freshman and, although I didn’t realize it at the time, how hard it was to leave.  Nobody tells you how difficult it is being in your twenties, stuck somewhere between trying to hold on to your youth and learning how to be a responsible adult.  It ain’t always roses.  So for that hour or so, I enjoyed pretending to be a college student again.

After a sweaty walk around campus I met another friend, Jessica, at some antique shops in downtown Burlington.  I wasn’t into the whole DIY and antiquing thing in college or else I would have blown all of my money at this place:

I purchased the stained glass windows to hang in front of the two small windows on either side of my fireplace.  I would have gotten the stool too except that you had to buy all four and the table.  Overall, there were great knickknacks to look through and I got some neat ideas for my own house. Like this silver desk:

And this hutch with a stenciled back:

Great ideas for future projects!  After Jessica had to literally drag me out the door because the shop was closing, I followed her to her place in Chapel Hill to begin the next phase of my travels. Needless to say, my visit to Elon and Burlington was a success!  Gotta love driving another thousand miles with fragile items in your trunk! 😉

 

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