Brooke Fraser’s “Here’s to You,” one of many songs that is near and dear to me, states, quite wisely, “life is short as the day is long.” I consistently find this to be true, especially when I realize that, although my days are so incredibly full, a month of the fall semester has already flown by.

Readers, I can safely say that I have succeeded in settling into a fairly well adjusted schedule by now. Once again, I find that budgeting free time is just as important as budgeting time for work, and I am reminded again that there is so much to enjoy about life on a college campus. The simple pleasures all amount to so much, and this past week, it is the little things that have made my heart so full.

My days typically start in a sleepy haze. I roll out of bed first to enjoy the cheery singing performed graciously by my roommate as she prepares for the day. I then get ready as quickly as possible so as to enjoy a huge cup of coffee before my first class. Side note: Coffee is glorious, isn’t it? I often fall asleep looking forward to having my morning cuppa. Okay, back on track now. Once I am sufficiently caffeinated, I step out into the eternal sunshine of Southern California and begin my trek to the James building, spouting out innumerable “hello’s” and “how’s life?’s” to people along the way. Walking around campus this year often feels like a picture-perfect movie montage in which the protagonist powerwalks along to a cheery indie song. Even the smallest moments at the start of the day set a tone which allows me to be aware of the blessings of university life!

I then spend the majority of my day in class, scratching my head at mind-boggling ideas or picking my professors’ brains to gain one more sliver of knowledge. This year has brought on just another level of enthusiasm for my life as a student, as I have added my film studies minor. This, coupled with English, allows me to dig deep into the subjects I love and shamelessly geek out over the things I find fascinating. One of my fellow English major friends perfectly summed up what our major entails: it is an ongoing book club in which we read great books, talk about them, write about them, talk about them once more and then repeat the entire process with another great book. I can honestly say that it is a privilege to go to school and learn the things that make one’s passion grow.

At the end of a long day of classes, work and meetings, I enjoy time in my living room with the three gorgeous girls I am graced to call roommates. We sprawl out in whatever position we find comfortable and dive into the evening’s activities. We encourage each other through homework, discuss an interesting topic encountered during the day, or battle through an important philosophical question. I can hardly imagine a better end to a day than spending it with dear friends who exhort one another and offer undefiled friendship.

While college life is a roller coaster filled with stresses, deadlines and challenges, these are matched in joyful privileges and community. Taking joy in all of the simple things can help to maintain a gracious attitude and to carry on through life purposefully and joyfully. Friends, I hope you have a wonderful week.