10 years ago this month I moved away from home for the very first time. 10 years ago this week (almost to the day... I think we started class on August the 18th) I stepped on Auburn's campus and sat through my very first college class. 10 years ago one of my favorite seasons of my life began.
People talk about how high school was their "glory days" but for me, it was most definitely my years at Auburn. My college experience was the time of my LIFE! I accomplished so much, had so many incredible opportunities, made the most amazing friends, and etched a million precious memories into my mind.
Last night I went through a box of college photos and found myself right back in the midst of those memories... and I couldn't resist sharing a few of them here! (I apologize in advance for the bad quality - we can't get our scanner to work so you are getting pictures of pictures!) Since it's the 10 Year Anniversary of my Freshman year - these pictures will just be a few favorites from my first year at Auburn. So get ready for a trip down memory lane...
Of course FOOTBALL was one of my favorite things about being a student at Auburn! I loved getting dressed up to go to games, and all of my sweet fraternity dates that took such good care of me! Sometimes I miss wearing pretty Game Day dresses... but I do not miss wearing high heels all over campus!
|With David Ytterberg in the FarmHouse section - AU vs LSU 2002|
|Me with Lance Ingram in the FIJI section|
I got to perform on the football field at HomeComing my Freshman Year because I was a member of the AU Singers. It was INCREDIBLE to be on the field, looking up at that crowd! The picture above is of me and Blair Cheek - right before we went down to the sidelines!
This fella was one of my very first friends at Auburn. He was in my group at Camp War Eagle (Freshman Orientation) and from that week together I got to be friends with him and his roommate Lance. You might recognize his grin from American Idol - yes screaming teen girls everywhere, that is Paul McDonald! I used to join him onstage to sing "Walkin in Memphis" whenever I was at a Hightide Blues show (his band in college).... I never knew that would be my claim to fame! It's still so crazy to see his picture in magazines!
My mentor at Auburn told me I HAD to try out for Freshman Forum, and I'm so glad I did! This group was made up of 60 of the best student leaders from our Freshman Class. It was my first experience with the SGA at Auburn, and being chosen as a member was a stepping stone for so many other organizations I was involved in. I am still good friends with a lot of the people I met through Freshman Forum - as a matter of fact - 2 of them were bridesmaids in my wedding!
|With our fearless leaders - Lindsay, Trace, and Amanda!|
Hey Day is a tradition that ensures that Auburn remains the friendliest campus in the nation! On this day each year, people pass out nametags all over campus and everyone tells each other HEY by name! There's also entertainment, free food, and other activities - it's a lot of fun! My freshman year Josh Adams and I won a talent contest, so we got to perform for everyone on the concourse!
|Giving out HEY DAY nametags on the concourse with Blair!|
|Performing with Josh on the HEY DAY stage!|
Competing in Miss AU was my first experience in a BIG Miss Alabama preliminary pageant. If I remember right, that year we had something like 39 contestants?! I also competed in Miss Glom that year, Miss Alabama Agriculture, and was the Miss Alabama State Cinderella International Woman (whew, that title is a mouthful!) I was a busy bee with all the pageants and appearances I had to make!
I was a FarmHouse Fraternity Little Sister for all 5 of my years at Auburn. We were a support system for the brothers - helping with rush, encouraging the pledges, and taking part in socials. We had all sorts of fun events we did each year (like sneaking in and decorating the whole house with Valentines every February!) Over the years the brothers became like family to me - even going so far as to drive to Birmingham to visit my baby brother when he was in the hospital!
BJ Agnew and I dressed up like Easter Bunnies and delivered goodies to our "Big Brothers"!
My first FH Social - Harvest Hoedown! (You can't really see our costumes, it was too cold outside!)
Davey Richerson, one of my FarmHouse Big Brothers. Throughout the years I had quite a few Big Brothers and Little Brothers (Pledges) including Davey, Taylor Teel, Kenneth Camp, Brad Acton and I'm sure a few more that I can't recall!
What better way to make memories in college than a ROADTRIP?! These four girlfriends and I drove to Savannah, GA together as part of my Intro to Architecture class (a roadtrip was required - fun, huh?) We had a great time together visiting my Aunt Angie, shopping, and going out on the town!
|L-R :: Ericka, Nikki, Amy, Katie, and BJ in Savannah|
|Being silly at Bay Street Blues (wasn't that what this place was called?)|
I love any excuse to get all dressed up, so of course I loved going to formals!
AU Singers Formal :: Spring 2003
|My date Shelton was a set up (we'd only met once the night before!) but we had SO much fun!|
The Navy & Marine Ball :: Fall 2002
Being a member of AU Singers was the honor (and joy) of a lifetime! These men and women were some of the most talented performers I have ever met! I loved performing with them more than anything else in the world!
These pictures are from our Fall Retreat Freshman Year. I wish I could find a pic of us in our sequins, but the only ones I found are from Sophomore year...
PERFORMING FOR PRESIDENT BUSH
Speaking of honors - the AU Singers were given the honor and privilege to perform for President Bush's visit to Auburn University! We were in our sequins in this pic, but it was freezing outside so they're hidden under our jackets.
MY FIRST TRIP TO NEW YORK
Our AU Singers Summer Tour my freshman year was a trip to New York City! I can barely describe how in love I was the first time I stepped out into Times Square. The whole experience was incredible - from seeing my first Broadway Musical (AIDA) to performing LIVE on The Today Show! We also got to see Ground Zero (very emotional), watch several more musicals (Movin' Out & Phantom of the Opera), go shopping, and perform at the Lincoln Center Plaza (in front of Juilliard). It was definitely a trip I won't forget!
|Waiting to get on the Subway with Candice, Tricia, and Casey!|
|With Blair, Ann Marie, & Dr. Smith right before we performed LIVE on The Today Show!|
On the way to New York we stopped off for a performance in D.C. at The Old Post Office Pavilion. My friend BJ came (with a family friend she was visiting) to see us perform! Of course no trip to D.C. is complete without a photo in front of The White House!
There are hundreds more memories I wish I could find photos of - my first Call-Outs, hanging out with AUBIE, me working in the Admissions office (my job all through college), painting the Tiger Paw at Toomer's Corner, wearing my pajamas at the Wreck Tech parade.... and of course thousands more pictures from the rest of my years at Auburn - but I will save those for another time! It's easy to see that I had a wonderful Freshman Year - but it was just the beginning of my college experience. I will always be grateful for the relationships, opportunities, and memories I have from my time at Auburn... The Loveliest Village on The Plains!