The Big Mo

As the summer starts to draw to a close I just want to reflect on the time I’ve gotten to spend here at home before things get started back at Ave Maria. This summer at home has been full of fun and surprises but also a lot of stress. So let me try and sum up everything that I’ve been up to the past month or so. Disclaimer: I haven’t taken a lot of pictures this summer so I apologize for the lack of them in this post.

I guess the first thing to talk about is how amazing it’s been to be with my family. I can’t tell you how much I’ve missed home-cooked meals,  hanging out with my brother and sister and being able to tell my parents good-morning and good-night in person.  My family i my biggest supporter and couldn’t do this without them. By the end of Summer Training I was so homesick I couldn’t wait to get back to Colorado. So it’s been super nice being able to relax and spend some time with them. Love you guys and thanks for all you do for me!

On The Tram To The Magic Kingdom!
My Awesome Family!

Speaking of family, I took a trip up to Fort Collins last month to visit everyone I love there.  I was up there for a week to do fundraising and to visit friends and mission partners. It was a great week. I got to see pretty much everyone I wanted to see and I got to eat at all my favorite restaurants up there. Definitely feel like I’ve gained some weight this summer and I’m pretty sure it all started there. Worth it. It was really awesome to get to see everyone. These are people that I haven’t seen since December or longer so we had lots of catching up to do. Thanks to everyone who took the time to share a meal or a drink with me! Wish I could’ve stayed longer but a week was just the right amount of time. Hope me and my waistline get to see you in December Fort Collins!

So for the rest of my time I’ve pretty much just been hanging around the Denver area spending time with my family, hanging out with friends and doing lots and lots of fundraising.

Spending Some TIme With Friends
Spending Some Time With Friends

Now you may be wondering what the title of this post means? The Big Mo? Well “The Big Mo” is a concept dealing with motivation that we learned about at training earlier this summer. Basically when we got home for training we were to try and hit fundraising super hard and keep going strong until we reached our goal. If we hit the ground running and kept the ball rolling it would be easy to stay motivated or “Keep The Big Mo Going.” Does that make sense? The Big Mo = Motivation. So basically all summer I’ve been working hard to keep my Big Mo going. It’s been tough because I had a lot of new support to raise if I wanted to make it back to campus on time. Not going to lie, it was pretty tough. If you’ve been following my blog from the beginning then you know all about how I feel about fundraising and how my experience with is has been so far. Still really difficult for me and I don’t see it getting easier any time soon. It was pretty tough to keep my Big Mo going when it came to MPD but the important thing to remember is that I made it to campus and I’m very thankful to God and to all my amazing donors for that.

All Dressed Up For The Wedding
All Dressed Up For The Wedding

The end of my time home in Colorado was marked by a pretty momentous occasion : the wedding of two of my good friends, Tod and Katie. It was pretty big for me seeing as it was the first wedding I’ve ever been to….ever. I’ve been invited to them in the past for sure but I’ve never been able to attend until now! Let me just say that it was absolutely beautiful. Not going to lie, I cried twice. The ceremony was wonderful and the reception was so much fun. I wish the Masters’ nothing but the best and I miss them already!

Tod and Katie Exchanging Vows
Tod and Katie Exchanging Vows

So as the end of summer break came around I packed up my car and set out for a three day journey from Denver to Ave Maria. It was my first big road trip and I had to do it all by myself but in the end it really wasn’t too bad. My first leg was from Denver to Columbia, Missouri and took about 10 hours.  I had to stay in a hotel for the night because there weren’t any missionaries around to bunk with. The inn I stayed at was a tad sketchy but I made it through the night. Leg two of the trip took me from Columbia all the way to Atlanta, Georgia. Day two definitely took the longest, but probably the most fun. I got to see the big Arch in Saint Louis, MO then drive through Nashville. The highlight however, was definitely stopping in Metropolis, Illinois and getting to see the home of my favorite Superhero. The one and only SUPERMAN!

Metropolis, IL
Metropolis, IL

If you know e then you know that I’m a huge Superman nerd. I had heard of Metropolis, IL but I had on idea that I was going to be passing by it, so when I saw the billboard advertising it, I obviously had to stop. It was SO COOL!! The had a Super Museum with memorabilia fro ever incarnation of Superman,  a huge gift shop and a giant statue of the Man of Steel himself.

Giant Statue of Superman

And no I didn’t actually buy that hat that I’m wearing in the picture above. I already had that with me. I did however, buy a Superman beach towel and shot glass. I stayed there way too long and threw my whole road trip schedule off but it was totally worth it. After leaving Metropolis I finished driving to Atlanta. There I was able to stay with some friends of mine, the Georgia Tech missionaries. Big thanks to Alex and Jared for housing me for the night. Really good to see them. After spending the morning with the mishes I saddled up for the final leg of the trip which took me through the rest of Georgia and all the way to Southeast Florida. The last hour and a half of the trip was through the scariest rain/thunderstorm I’ve ever seen, even after a year of of living here but I finally arrived in Ave around 8pm.

Team Ave

I didn’t get to enjoy it for that long though since the next day the team and I left for Reddington Beach for our beginning of the year offsite. I was pretty great to see the new team again after over  month of being apart. I was really excited to start spending some time with them and  getting to know them better. After spending some quality time with them on the beach and casting some vision for the future, I’m can honestly say that I’m SO excited for this year. I love the new team and I think we all get along great and are going to work really well together. After getting back to campus we’ve just been moving everyone into their rooms and getting everything ready for school to start.

Having Dinner With The Team

And pretty much sums up my summer. Nothing too crazy but still full of busy schedules. It feels great to be back at Ave Maria. I really missed the place, the people and even my dorm room! So to bring back the theme of this post, getting back to campus, seeing some students already and spending time with the team has been really good for The Big Mo. I’m super motivated for this year and I cant wait util all the students get here! Please keep the team and I in your prayers and pray that we all keep The Big Mo Going.

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