Hi my name is Claire! I’m a second year doctoral student studying higher education (aka college access) at the University of Virginia. I love to hang out with friends, be active, and try new things. Unfortunately my busy work/school schedule sometimes gets in the way so I’m continuously trying to achieve work-life balance. Thing is, I haven’t exactly fallen in love with the small town of Charlottesville despite it’s “big city appeal, small town feel” (as many gloat). I have one year left in Cville and so I figure I should make the best of my time here; this blog follows my attempt to live the Good Life in central VA and surrounding areas. Let’s Go on a Living Spree!!!
The purpose of this blog is really twofold. The first is to write about my adventures in the beautiful, yet small, town of Charlottesville, VA. Cville is home to Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, Shenandoah National Park, Dave Matthew’s Band (really!), and Virginia wine country. After living here for two years I’m still not in love with the place even though everyone raves about it. “You live in Cville?” they say. “I LOVE it there!!”. Maybe I’m just a big–or bigger–city person, but I just don’t feel the need to gush about the place yet. I’m determined, though, to give Cville a chance. In what may be my last year living here (I will be writing my dissertation over the next year), I have resolved to go on a living spree. Although I’m not sure exactly how Kanye West would’ve defined it (“The good life, let’s go on a living’ spree”), for me this will mean trying as many new things as I can and appreciating the happy, healthy life I have built here.
The second reason for this blog concerns something I, and I know most people out there, struggle with daily. That is, work-life balance. Sometimes we get so caught up in our own little worlds that we forget that there are many other meaningful people, opportunities, and happenings going on outside of our bubble. For me, I can feel sucked into the politics, obstacles, and stress that goes along with being a PhD student. I can feel overworked and find it challenging to juggle the demands of school, work, and the rest of my life. For me the Good Life is one in which I can prioritize my career/professional ambitions and my health and pleasure. I hope some of the postings can help you as well!