Here I am over a week later with another year of college under my belt. Although I have been home since this past Wednesday, it has yet to fully sink in that I am halfway done with college! The past school year went incredibly fast, and I learned so much! It was full of positive and negative experiences including adventures in Spain, football games, new and improved gluten free cafeteria options, a foot injury, learning that mini altoids are not gluten free, gluten free expos, connecting with some awesome new bloggers, and much more. To be honest, leaving school this year was harder than I thought. Growing up is exciting and terrifying at the same time. As an upperclassman this fall, I will no longer be required to purchase an unlimited meal plan. I am thrilled about this, as I will no longer have to worry about navigating the gluten free cafeteria options on a daily basis. I left the cafeteria lifestyle on a positive note, which truly makes me happy for future gluten free students! Getting to know the dietician and a few of the chefs on a personal basis has made this past year smooth sailing, in comparison to my bumpy freshman year. As excited as I am to cook for myself this fall, I will miss having the convenience of a chef cooking me a delicious meal on an occasional basis. I am sincerely thankful for all of the cafeteria staff who have taken care of me this past year. Whether it was saying "Hi, how are you today?," giving me a can of gluten free chicken noodle soup when I was sick, or making the delicious Mexican quinoa dish that I requested, I can tell that you all truly care and love your jobs. Your generosity has meant the world to me, and saying thank you is the least I can do.
Now that I have reached the halfway mark, what is in store for my last two years of college? A lot of exciting things! First of all, I will be living with four friends this fall and cooking for myself! One of my roommates is also gluten free, so that will be great to have someone to share food with, in addition to all other things that go along with being gluten free. I could not be more excited! I am hoping to meal prep because I will be busy with class and work, which I have learned a lot about from my gluten free friend and blogger Amber. The other piece of exciting news is that I will be studying abroad in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala in the spring of 2015 for the entire semester! I will be in Guatemala from January-May with a group of about twenty students and two advisors from my school; while there, I will live with a host family, take classes, volunteer, travel, and more. This is such an incredible opportunity, and although I am already a bit nervous, I am more thrilled than anything! Staying gluten free in a foreign country is definitely possible, as I experienced in Spain, and although there are challenges, nothing is holding me back from pursuing my dreams. I am looking forward to writing about tips for eating gluten free in Guatemala, and I will be posting when I am abroad! The future holds a lot, and I couldn't feel more blessed right now. As for now, I am home for the summer, and I hope to blog more in my free time. Have a wonderful day everyone!