Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Saturday, February 19, 2011
Normally I am not one to "Link Up" but Kelly's Korner is having a "Show Us Your Life" dedicated to your alma mater and I couldn't help but write about it. Oxford, MS is a place that gets in your blood and you really can't ever get rid of it. You are always homesick for it, even when you live here like I do.
The University of Mississippi will forever have a special place in my heart. My mom graduated from Ole Miss in Jan of 1969 and came back to Chicago where she met my dad and they raised me. My dad being a Sigma Nu from DePauw never desired to see Ole Miss, and therefore my mom (I have no idea why!) never came back to Mississippi to visit. Now he is a bigger fan than my mom!
When it came time for me to choose a college I had my heart set on the University of Iowa...3 hours from home, great journalism/PR program etc. Well knowing my mother she insisted we go see Ole Miss, so against my own will I agreed. I wasn't 100% set on Ole Miss from the get go though. I was still torn about where I wanted to go...I mean Oxford was 9.5 hours from home. But after a long night of partying senior year of high school--I flipped a coin between Ole Miss and Iowa---Ole Miss won and I was south bound from then on.
My freshman year was not typical--I was homesick all the time, all my friends were having the times of their lives in college and I was struggling. Finally I decided that I was just going to immerse myself in everything Oxford had to offer---I was hooked.
I have 2 degrees from Ole Miss, and currently work for the University in the Division of Outreach. My parents retired to Oxford and are now "duel citizens" of the North and South. At this point in my life I seriously cannot imagine living anywhere else.
I hate when I hear negativity about Ole Miss (mascot, Slow Dixie) in the news, because if you were here and knew the people at Ole Miss you would know this is not the case. We have the kindest people in our town. My mom always says "Only in Mississippi" about some of our crazy adventures.
Now some pictures of why I love Oxford and Ole Miss so much!
This year we had 2 big snow falls. Here is a picture from the first one. Some students built a big Snowman on the Walk of Champions (where the Ole Miss teams walks through to football games every weekend).
Freshman year I was so lucky to meet all these amazing girls (and Jay!). They lived on the floor above me. We all pledged different sororities in college and still managed to stay close through college. Here we are celebrating at Regan and Hill's wedding. I am so happy that we have all stayed so close and get to see each other pretty often. I know over the years the frequent trips will become less, so I am enjoying them now. Plus, since I live in Oxford I have housed all of the folks in the recent years (including Lauren right now!)
I also was in a wonderful sorority. I pledged AOII as a freshman and I am so happy I did. I made so many great friends from all over. Here is one of my best friends and sorority sister Autumn on her 21st birthday.
Red Rose Ball Senior Year
And some great girls at bid day 2009 (including my little sis and big sis)
Here are two amazing AOII friends Whitney and Allison with former Chancellor Khayat. Allison and Whitney are my die hard Ole Miss fans with me. We are always chatting about Rebel Sports.
But the best part of Oxford is the sports....especially football. We are HUGE Ole Miss fans and go to most away games. One of my best friends got married on the LSU home game and my dad literally cried because he would have to miss a home game. We have a "tailgating family". There are about 5 tents next to each other around Ventress and we have all become great friends.
Part of our tailgating family (the Hughes girls) at the Ole Miss Women's Forum.
Bonnie and our favorite football trainer Larandust. He is like a member of our family.
Tailgating in Bama with our family friends from Illinois.
Reunion with some of my best friends in the Grove.
With George and Allison at Bama
My parents who put on an amazing tailgate every weekend.
More tailgating family!
Our annual "landshark" pic.
Frank Everett, Jr. said it best though.
There is a valid distinction between The University and Ole Miss even though the separate threads are closely interwoven.
The University is buildings, trees and people. Ole Miss is mood, emotion and personality. One is physical, and the other is spiritual. One is tangible, and the other intangible.
The University is respected, but Ole Miss is loved. The University gives a diploma and regretfully terminates tenure, but one never graduates from Ole Miss.