Friday

My final day. I have reached the last full day of my stay in Massachusetts. I made an announcement in the morning thanking everyone for making me feel welcomed, and I got the response that I am welcomed to come back at anytime. I took an awful chemistry quiz in the morning, during my free period glazed a pottery piece, then talked in photo class, and proceeded onto lunch with roman noodles. After lunch I watched english presentations, watched The Little Mermaid in Spanish class, and just before the class ended a bell rang and the teacher told us to go to the recital hall. We were surprised to find that a teacher at The Academy who just released an album, was set up with his band to play a performance for us for our last period of the day. I thoroughly enjoyed the performance, and it helped pull a close to my time at Charlemont. Once school ended I was swarmed by hugs and goodbyes. Why does time have to go by so fast? I came home off the bus with Karina and two of our friends were already at the house, they arrived before we did. As a result Karina and I left the two boys there and went on an hour long hike. For the rest of the night I was able to eat good food, hang out with the friends I made, watch movies, and say some of my final goodbyes. It was a pleasant way for a send off. Well. I guess it is just about my time to go. I am truly going to miss this place. I am just going to have to revisit it in my dreams until I can come back. Goodbye Charlemont, goodbye rolling hills and mountains, goodbye friends, and goodbye to my most amazing host family.

Thursday

My last studio block day. And what a day it was! My day started out in getting to skip a Spanish test so I could do photo and while in photo, Karina and I were serenaded  by Ramsy's lovely voice and guitar. After photo came my double jewlery making block, where I was able to finish up the projects I started and say my fair well to the class that MV really needs. Next up was lunch where we crammed enough people to fill up 3 tables into a single table as a goodbye lunch. Once lunch ended I went to geometry (my favorite class ever) and had an awesome time learning. After geometry, I had a hot chocolate date with Leah. We just sat in the lunch room together sipping hot cocoa while talking, it was quite a relaxing free period. To end the day I had a fun history class because my history teacher  at The Academy is so entertaining to listen to and talk with. As soon as I was home Krina and I got moeny then headed to The Creamery for dinner which was delicious because they have some of the best stuff I have tasted. Dinner led into the drive to the Shakespearean Festival!! We watched two plays, The Tempist and Much Ado About Nothing. I have never in my entire life, been to a play where the crowd was so animated, lively, and into every single line the actors/actresses had to say. I left the plays feeling refreshed, alive from the laughter, and so thankful for the whole experience. Tomorrow is officially my last full day in Massachusetts. My last day to relish in the beauty of nature, last day to make jokes with friends at school, and my last day the have a girl dance party with Karina. I miss my family at home, but I am also going to miss my family here. One of the teachers was trying to talk me into staying saying: "People would love to have you stay with them, we could work everything out. The Academy just wants you to stay, you brought such a bright light!". Everything good always has to come to an end at some point I guess. I have almost reached my end I suppose.

Wednesday

Three days till my return. Three days full of laughter and sadness. While today was my last wednesday, I enjoyed doing a chemistry experiment, eating an amazing lunch, talking with friends I am just getting really close to now, watching the sports awards, laughing about the seat choice of a person on the bus, making dinner, writing a newspaper article, painting the rest of our thanksgiving message in the dining room, saying a goodbye to my host mom, and to end it all: going for a hot tub. The sports awards at the end of the school day were great, capturing all of the wonderful moments during the season, and Karina even won an award! I knew all along she was gong to get it, no doubt about it. I was really happy when I made dinner and they enjoyed it! There were no leftovers left over for lunch tomorrow. On the bus this person has decided to sit next to me for three days in a row and it is quite comical. Everyday before he gets in I look at my friend and bet they he'll sit next to me. So when Karina got in the bus and saw who was sitting next to me she couldn't help but almost pee her pants because she was laughing so hard. And a hot tub is always a wonderful way to end a day, isn't it? I have no clue what I am going to do when I go home because my day will not feel complete without it. Tomorrow should be fun with our lunch party, I am even going to wear my nice dress tomorrow to school because Karina and I decided it was suiting. It is hard to believe all of the time I have been here has already gone by. I am going to miss acting rediculious, the bus rides to and from school, the cold mornings, the friendly faces, talking with my host parents, my creative studio blocks,  helping people with homework, hot tubbing, and the close knit group of friends I was fortunate enough to form.

Tuesday

A successful day is one in which you laugh and feel the worth or happiness all around you. Today was a successful day.
Today I enjoyed the finishing of ceramics, accompanying a friend in the dark room for photo, eating roman noodles out of a mug, making jokes with friends on the bus, painting a thanksgiving pilgrim turkey on a dining room wall, some dark chocolate with almonds, and going for a relaxing hot tub. The experiences and friendships I have built here are ones I am never going to forget. Ever. I am just so thankful for this experience and the amazimg family I was able to stay with. They welcomed me with warm arms and loving hearts and I am forever greatful. And can I just say how nice it is to actually have mug, bowls, and real plates at school to use. Its great. Heating up soup is no problem, and no worrying about cutting through your plate when eating meat. Well anyway, onto something else now, I am thrilled to see what tomorrows sports awards bring. I have heard about everything that goes on with the funny coaches presents and eager to see how it all goes down here. The week before I came to Charlemont we had our sport awards at my school. I will update how everything went tomorrow. Until then, let the moon shine bright, and the stars illuminate the night.

Monday

Today was my last monday I will experience at Charlemont. It was a much anticipated day with Fall Exhibition. Everyone else in my grade was doing a presentation on a writer or artist from the Romanticism period and I did mine on Ohio. I got compliments on my artsy board  and everything I knew, I felt overall extremely happy with the experience. I enjoyed sharing with people where I came from, and I just tend to enjoy talking with adults and learning from them as well. For dinner we stayed at the school and a group that is traveling to Costa Rica later this year put on the dinner as a fund raiser. They served Costa Rican food with rice, beans, salad, avocados for tortilla chips, and salsa and sour cream. They had a whole dessert table that was covered with everything from apple cake to vegan chocolate orange cupcakes. Once I was well fed, I set up for my presentation in a classroom. I presented to people from 6:45-7:45. As soon as my shift was done, I checked out some of the seniors presentation proposals for their senior projects until it was time for me to pack it all up and head home. Today was quite exciting with the presenting and everything that came along with it. Before it was time for dinner I was photographed by people with black and white cameras because they have a photography class here, and I am hoping to maybe print one of the picture sometime this week. Printing has become my favorite thing, while I have only done it twice, I have decided that my school now needs a dark room and a photography studio. The whole process teaches you patience, and to appreciate just being still and calm. I cannot wait to finish up my school ceramic piece tomorrow.

Sunday

I woke this Sunday morning to fog so thick I couldn't even see across the street. I was able to go to the grocery store today, and a cute general store, along with finishing up my exhibition project and beading a bracelet. I am going to be making dinner for my host family one night so I had to get some supplies from the grocery store and we just somehow happened to have to get cinnamon raisin bread on our way home from the general store. I don't have a clue why we would ever get something so deliciously scrumptious, but I guess I won't complain (it is pretty darn tasty). I also was able to completly finish up the glazing I needed to get done on my project tonight so the pieces should be all good to go by Tuesday! I am really happy with what I was able to accomplish with Christy's help. I love how our dinner completly complimented the weather outside; we had a beef roast, cooked carrots and mashed potatoes. You place all three of these things on your plate at once and you instantly have a cozy meal. It is those kinds of really good, flavorful meals that make you feel all cozy with the sad weather outside, it's a beautiful balance. I am excited for exhibition tomorrow, and I just hope that people are interested in Ohio and what I have to say. I am not nervous at all for this (although I am sure I might be by tomorrow), but I just want to make sure I do not lull people to sleep. Off to my last week at Charlemont. I don't really want to leave this place, and all of the friendships I have started with people. I guess I will just have to make this the best week ever.

Saturday

So I forgot to write yesterday's blog post because I got home so late from having fun throwing the birthday party for Noah. Once all of my classes for the day had finished, I rode the bus home and a friend accompanied me. We made an elaborate card with Karina, baked cookies, and got all of Noah's presents together. Once we finished laughing and having a good time we Recieved the call that Ezra was leaving with Noah from the community supper and it was time we headed to their house for the big surprise. Noah just thought that he was going to spend the night with his two guy friends and so when he walked in the door we gave him a scare. We ate pizza, opened our funny presents, watched Talladega Nights, all grabbed a spoon and devoured two tubs of ice cream, and ate some wonderful cake. I do not think I have ever laughed so much at a birthday party in my entire life. When you put all of us in this little group we have together, we create a ludicrous amount of energy that only burns out by the sounds of laughter that escapes between our teeth. I did not get home until about 12:15 and at that point I was exhausted and just went to bed with Henriete who Stayed over. Both her and I fell asleep almost instantly after we talked for a minute. Now onto today; I had a great day today. I went with a group of international students on a trip to two museums. In my opinion we should have just spent all of our time at the first museum because of how amazing it was, and just that we were not able to see even half of the exhibits that they had open. The first museum was named Mass MoCa and is was a contemporary art museum that was inside a preserved old electric factory. The atmosphere was so appealing between to the old chipped paint, and the modern feel of the white walls. That museum is the nations largest contemporary art museum and was by far the most amazing art museum I have been able to go into. I wouldn't have minded if they just left me there for the whole day....or the whole weekend, that would work as well. The Sol LeWitt pieces were just extravagant, and I enjoyed the Tom Philips book page pieces just for the fact that I actually created a piece that I based off one of his works. The space that they have there is perfect for all of the contemporary art pieces, and I especially enjoy the contemporary art because many of the pieces, artist created specifically to fill in the great space that the museum has. Once we finishe in the contemporary art museum we went to a place called Public for lunch, and the food was just create and I loved how fresh the atmosphere was in that restaurant. After lunch was done we traveled to the Williams College art museum, and that museum was fairly neat. I found it interesting how that museum also included a Sol LeWitt piece. I am so pleased that I was able to have that experience. The museums have started my weekend off great so far, I guess I am going to have to make tomorrow just as amazing.

Thursday

Thrilling thursday. Today was exceptionally great. I was able to complete many projects in jewlery making, print two black and white photos, finish up my ceramics piece, and take a geometry test which was enjoyable (I have no clue why but I love that subject). Karena unfortunately wasn't feel much better, so went home at lunch with her mom. Once school ended Lilah and I took the bus to North Hampton and we did accomplished quite a bit of shopping (got some people on my Christmas list), and then to top it all of went, to a Japanese sushi place for dinner. We did some shopping for a friends birthday tomorrow, and just went into any shop we thought looked appealing. Once all of the shopping and dinner was done we set on our way to the hockey game. We just had to stop on our way at Trader Joe's for dark chocolate covered almonds for during the game, once that mission was complete we reached our destination. The game was thrilling, exciting, joyful, sorrowful at times, but most of all just a fun dance party full of screaming and booing. The score became tied at 2-2 and the intensity was rising, just when we became excited, the refs decided to take a look of what happened. In the end, they took our goal away. One lesson: do not ever take a goal away from a rowdy, boisterous  team. Ever. The boos echoed throughout the rink, and even with one period left the Universoty of Massachusets was unable to make up for the goal that was unfairly taken away from them, leaving the score at 2-1 with UMass on the lower end. While we lost the game it was an event to remember and the fun dancing, yelling, booing, cheering party was one I will not forget. Friday marks the turning of a boys' 18 birthday, that means time for celebration through card games, pizza and the universal birthday dessert: cake. Onto another glorious day.

Wednesday

Today has officially been renamed to No Waste Wednesday at the Acadmey because today was recycling day. Recycling day is a boring name so No Waste Wednesday became the new option. For a Wednesday quite a lot happened today. I took a chemistry test, took part in a discussion in history, and read poetry by John Keats in english. At the end of it all though we had all-school meeting, where we had a veteran speaker come in and talk to us. The speaker had been a doctor to all of the wounded soldiers and citizens of his surrounding base area. He discussed his training, what it was like to be under the stress of having peoples lives in your hands while also barley sleeping every other day. In all it helped me to appreciate American veterans even more than I already do. Once the school day was done came the bus ride home. My bus ride contained the important planning of a friends 18th birthday party. We know it will involve pizza eating, beautiful cake eating, the game of life, movies of different sorts, but we are still trying to figure out the logistics and whether we want a surprise party with a possibly kidnapping (more like a blind folding) to get him there. Once off the bus and home, we had some amazing chicken, potato, dumpling soup and then headed for the hot tub. The very best way to end the night. Now for fantastic thursday!
Tuesday! I woke up this morning to almost 2 cm. of snow, and it made my whole day! Today was really quite fun and it just flew by. I have no clue where the time escaped too at all. It is a disappointing day though when someone says they will give you a cookie, and then forgets to give it to you. I worked in my ceramics studio block for two hours on one project I need to get finished up by the end of this week so it can be fired and ready to go by the time I leave. I also took a history quiz today, and talked to a person whose family all went to a school in ohio which happens to be one of our school rivals. It's funny how small of a world it can be sometimes. I met and learned some new peoples faces while also getting someone interested in networking to my school in Ohio. Once school was over and I had arrived at home, I finished homework and them Karina and I kind if went crazy. We had a girl dance party. The dancing was wild, the music some of the best, and we couldn't stop laughing. Once our insane two person party ended we had crepes for dinner which proved to be delicious. And to end the night we watched one of the funnies How I Met Your Mother episodes. On to wonderful wednesday!

Monday

While Monday is usually the most hated day of the week for most, I don't seem to mind it too much. For some reason I enjoy getting up early, feeling refreshed from the nights rest, and then standing in the cool air watching my breathe curl out into the air. I don't mind standing in the cold because there is always something different to look at, while some may think that the tree across the street is just the same, boring tree you have to look closer, and observe the small changes. Many people were not at school today, including Karina. There was a run this morning that benefitted people with eating disorders call the Run for Tara, and so many people showed up at school in the middle of the day. Karina, on the other hand, hasn't been feeling well the past couple of days. Today was quite a normal day, but two guys were showing me some interesting card tricks during lunch and morning meeting, that were actually surprisingly well represented. I was able to complete my chemistry test needed by my chemistry teacher back at home today, and that picked up a weight off of me. I am excited for Thursday when we go shopping and see the hockey game at UMass. I am glad I have been able to work with clay while I have been here because it is something that I find fun, while being stress relieving . I love studio block days because when you walk down the hall all you hear is beautiful music. I almost forgot! They made a big announcement today at the Academy that an Alumni donated a foosball table, we will be able to us it shortly, and they plan on having a tournament at some point that is currently being worked out. I hope I am around long enough so I can watch the beginnings of it. Well now onto one of the best days: Tuesday. Let the creativity begin!
I was unable to post this yesterday because the Internet was down when I was trying to post it, and it decided it was just not going to work. So here goes my blog post from the day before: my day today was just beautiful. Karina's father made pancakes and sausage for breakfast after he asked me what I do on Sundays and my response was: "We eat pancakes and sausage while watching The Sunday Morning Show".  I went to the ceramic studio after breakfast to finish up a project so it could get in the kiln and be done before I leave. The project is a surprise for my family, so I don't want to give it away because I know at some point they will read this. After I finished up in the studio I went for a hike with my host parents and the dog Oliver. We walked down the mountain their house a ways, and then went into the forest on a path that at first past hundreds of trees that had taps on them for maple syrup. Once past the tapped trees we suddenly came to a gorgeous tall waterfall that had smaller waterfalls made up inside of it. I had to just stop and stare for a few moments because it was the most beautiful scene I have ever seen. You always see the waterfall screen savers, or the pictures on google images, but I was actually by one of those picture perfect waterfalls! As you walk up along the falls, I followed a stream with moss covered rocks, and miniature waterfalls dotted here and there. Once through the path in the forest, we were dropped out onto bright green field. Again stunned by beauty, I stopped to take in all of the fresh air, sun light, and flowing of the greenest grass I had seen. Today was one of those days where you can try to describe the experience to others, but it will never match exactly all of the feelings and sensations you had at that moment. Pictures can only capture so much, but memories have to make up the parts missing

Saturday

I had a quite relaxing day here in Massachusets. In the morning I went to the ceramic art studio to work on a project. I worked all morning with my host mom and around 1:00 we left and went to a local craft show at the local elementary school. There were around 14 booths, and all of the money was to help out the community family center. I just had to purchase something, and I thought that my youngest sister would just love it. It is the most adorable headband that is a wool felt like material and it is cranberry red with flowers all over it. After that I just headed home to work on school work. I was fortunate enough to bake a key lime pie with Lilah, and we also made dinner and then mint meringues with the left over egg whites from the pie. Tonight was a fundraising event as well for the school I am attending. They call it the cornucopia auction. Teams of students work together to fill a basket that they have picked a theme for. The baskets are then auctioned off to parents along with some student artwork. My host family got one of the baskets and it is just full of so many yummy looking goodies. Tonight I was also introduced to the family loved television show: Psych. It is a really good show, I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised. I enjoy how the main character pretends to be a big psychic when all he does is takes all of the things he observes and is able to examine them in his brain and remeber every bit of his surroundings. When asked, he can pick parts of the surroundings out and he uses his observations to solve crimes. Tomorrow we should be going for a hike through the forest and I am most excited to stroll through the forest with no clock to have to run by. I cannot wait to hike around in the cool air.

Friday

Today was quite a lovely day. The majority of my day was just relaxing. I got to visit the local grocery store/restaurant named the Creamery. After that I was able to vist the local small  hardware supply store. The town I am in is so small, the owner of the supply store addressed Karina by her first name. I find it just so comforting to be in a nice town where you pretty much know everyone around. I was also able to visit Karina's mom's ceramics studio. They have a beautiful space, and I just fell in love with everything she had inside. I will hopefully be going back tomorrow to work on some pieces. But now something even more exciting that I was fortunate enough to wake up to this morning: snow! There were snow flurries about all day long, and I just love snow! The snow made my entire day. I also got to talk to everyone in my family today which was nice, and I enjoyed that quite a bit. Karina and I made dinner for the family tonight. We made flank steak and baked french fries. We received raving reviews. I will hopefully also be baking tomorrow with Karina's younger sister. She loves to bake and so do I so that works out perfectly. It is hard to believe that in two days I will have officially been here for one week. The time needs to slow down, either that or I just need to stop having so much fun. As the saying goes, time flies when you're having fun.

Thursday

Today my day at Charlemont was quite fun. I had jewlery making art class, and rug braiding. I just started a rug in rug braiding, but in jewlery making I made a gold ring, and a silver and gold bracelet. Jewlery making was quite exciting because I learned so much, and it really got me interested in it with all of the metal working and hands on techniques. Once school had finished we went with a bunch of friends candle pin bowling, which I had never done before, but proved that even begininners can beat the professionals sometimes. After bowling we walked down the cute downtown area and across a little bridge to a pizza place where we had dinner. Once dinner concluded we all went back to Karinas for a nice hot tub. Karinas sister was so cute! She gave me a pair of earrings that she had made in the jewlery making class. I really like how at Charlemont the students can express themselves through so many different activities. The amount of music that goes on at that school is remarkable. I was able to observe a band today practice and the amount of talent at that school exceeds all of my expectations I had. I also enjoy how much the students are involved in the school. Every group of students has a chore to do at the end of the day, and when they have morning meeting every morning a student from a class always shares a thought for the day, which can include quotes or some piece of inspiration they made up. The school is for sure a judge-free zone. You could walk down the hallway looking like completly finagled and someone would still say hi to you and start a conversation up. I am glad I have had so many fun opportunities.

Tuesday

I have concluded my second day at Charlemont, and it was a good one. Today I had two hour long art classes, one retrospective drawing and the other advanced ceramics. I particularly enjoyed the ceramics class, and am excited for Thursday to take jewlery making and rug braiding. I hope to finish a small sculptural pitcher by the time I am done with my stay here and hoping to get it raku fired. Other than art classes I had history and geometry, which both proved to not be too difficult. For the Fall Exhibition I will be making a poster about me and where I come from in Ohio. I am hoping all of that goes over well. I have enjoyed all of the scenery so far, and my host moms cooking is quite good.  I think we are planning on bowling Thursday with a group of friends so that should be exciting. Back to another night of cold and frost to wake up to. It's nice that my hos family and I have a similar taste and television shows we enjoy and have a similar sense of humor. I wish I could bring home some of the people here because they are just so funny and full life. Well can't wait to see what tomorrow brings!
So I officially had my first day today, and it was good. The school is small, and all of the people are nice. I attended english, geometry, and chemistry classes; and cannot wait to have two hours of arts classes tomorrow. My host family's mom is also a great cook, we had chicken and tortellinis for lunch at school that she made. After school we took the bus home and I absolutly love the drives. You drive around curvy mountains and all of the leaves on the tree are turned to their autumn color with a few ice sickles hanging off the rocks. Once we prepared homemade cookies and had homemade pizzas for dinner. We also had a couple of friends from school come over. We went in the hot tub and ate dinner. For desert we had this apple pizza was so different from anything I've had and it was great! I am really excited for school tomorrow so that I can meet some more new people. The family I am staying with has a dog and a cat and the dog is so rambunctious that he licks you everywhere everytime you come in, but I don't mind I rather like him quite a bit.   Their house is close to the top of a mountain and has a great view with many tree surrounding. The town they live in, Cummington, is comprised of 900 people. I can't wait for another exciting day!