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Tuesday
03/27/18

Love for Squad

Posted by caaponte on March 27, 2018 in Buffalo, Family, Reflection, Senior Year

SPRING BREAK AM I RIGHT!?

I was lucky enough to go on a cruise with 30+ of my friends where we sailed off to Port Carnaval and the Bahamas. Upon returning, everyone asked how it was but WHERE do I even begin?

I can tell you we didn’t get a full group picture and that everyone on the ship knew the Buffalo group VERY well. We’re a group of charismatic people…what can I say.

I can tell you we tried new foods..and lots of it. From duck to grouper to steak to cakes and pastries and back again.

I can tell you we had no service and were all pleasantly surprised with how good it felt to step away from social media.

I can tell you to wear sunscreen and to expect sand to take days to completely come out of your hair (and suitcase).

I can tell you that the Bahamas sunrise is worth waking up early. The water is as crystal clear as it appears on Google. No one Michael Jackson himself spent $100,000+ to spend a mere four nights in Atlantis (more than once I might add). Oh, and add watching the sunset with your best friends to your bucket list.

I can tell you that it was incredible to be surrounded by people in such a great mood. The positive spirit was contagious and I can’t wait to make more memories with these amazing people.

Specifically, I can’t reveal much more. Why?

1. Because there is not enough space in this blog and 2. Because some things stay between my friends and myself.

But….I can tell you that time is the one thing we can never get back. No matter how much money you make or how successful you are, you can never go back in time.

So thank you Squad 🙂 For understanding that I’m still adjusting to my new sense of self, for understanding my limitations, for being a shoulder to lean on when I needed it most (shoutout to Jesse, Shannon, and Christina), for missing my corny jokes (shoutout to Keesh), for welcoming us all in your home (shoutout to Ebron) and for reminding me that I’m still me (shoutout to you all). I love you more than I can express in this blog post.

 

Tuesday
03/13/18

I miss you, Kate

Posted by caaponte on March 13, 2018 in Family, Reflection

Going to school means sacrificing time spent with family and friends with the hope that upon graduation, you can return to your respective home and finally catch up to those you’ve neglected during the semester. You trust that everyone will still be there. Unfortunately, it’s not always the case.

I lost a very good friend of mine this past week, 23 years young. I have trouble concentrating when my mind is already busy reminiscing. It’s hard to expect that over the duration of four years – nothing traumatic could possibly occur that may interrupt your studies. Kate wouldn’t want to distract me, in fact she’d want the very opposite. She was always adamant that I stay focused and encouraged me to finish my last semester at UB strong.

I’ve been going through old letters she had written me and I cannot believe how much time has passed. They say there is no time like the present and that’s because you can never guarantee that time will stop while you’re busy working in another direction.

She would want me to be happy and do well in my last semester. Over the next few weeks, I’m going to work harder than ever to make her proud.

Wednesday
11/22/17

Happy Thanksgiving!

Posted by caaponte on November 22, 2017 in Family

You know those moments when you say to yourself, “It’s time for a new tradition.” This year, my mom and I have decided that we should do something amongst ourselves. Long story short, it would be nice to have something new to plan and in turn, look forward to.

The idea of Thanksgiving still remains – we are just recreating how we view it. I feel more blessed than I have ever felt. Being the first Thanksgiving without my grandfather, I hope to keep his legacy alive by celebrating what it means to be part of a Puerto Rican/ Colombian family.

Passion, Respect, and Love for each other.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Wednesday
02/15/17

Carrying on Family Tradition

Posted by caaponte on February 15, 2017 in Family, Futuristic Thinking

For my grandfather, happiness was found in having the family all together. He and my Abuela spent their entire lives building not just a house, but a home. With the recent passing of my Abuelo, I worry how we will uphold tradition… and if we will at all.

I’m the youngest grandchild and so I almost feel as though I am obligated to continue what he worked his whole life to instill in all of us. Whether it was with a pot of rice, a salami and cheese tray, an ice cream cake, zucchini bread, pollo asado, or a pig roast, they had the power to bring people from all over together.

Walking into their living room, you would see the family dancing salsa and merengue. Going outside, you could pick cherries from their many cherry trees and pick grapes right from the vine. Their home embodied the fairytale-like home you read about in storybooks as a child.

I was born in Rochester, as was my father. As the second generation, I wonder if my kids will be able to understand what it means to be Puerto Rican. The fiestas and asados are fewer and farther in between and as that tradition dwindles, I feel as though I am doing the future generations of my family an injustice if I don’t work harder to carry on Puerto Rican traditions. It is not just the food (although it is delicious), nor is it just the music (although it will certainly get you on your feet). Being Puerto Rican is a combination of rich history, romantic Spanish language, a positive disposition, and an understanding that special occasions are meant to be spent gathered in a circle with family. BUT – Just because you may not share the same last name, does not mean you are not family. I would be here all day if I shared with you all the friends and neighbors my grandparents welcomed into their home.

In efforts to celebrate his life, I hope to continue spreading his message to work hard but to always make sure to set aside time to spend with mi familia. His legacy and his strength will live on.