Twelve years ago, I was about to start my first year at UW Madison. At the recommendation of a few friends a year older than me, I went through sorority recruitment (it was called rush back then). Although I was initially unhappy with the bid card that read Pi Beta Phi, I quickly found friends with whom I am still close to today.
We’re now all over the country: Tina is in California; Sara and Jen are in Colorado; Kristen (who wasn’t a Pi Phi but basically could’ve been), Claire, and Amy are in Illinois; Lizzie (who sadly wasn’t able to make it) is in Maryland; and Nicole and I are in Wisconsin. Somehow, the stars aligned and we all came together this weekend. To be honest, Claire and Amy drunkenly demanded via video this weekend happen back in the fall. Good decisions can happen when alcohol is involved (like our decision to run a half marathon while drinking at The Stadium – RIP).
Jen’s parents bought a house on Lake Waubesa, which was kind of the home base for the weekend. Everyone stayed there except for Tina and her son, Carter, who stayed at my house.
Friday night everyone got in at different times and came over to my house. We hung out, chatted, ordered pizza from Salvatore’s, drank a little wine, and played with the babies.
Saturday morning was the first Wisconsin Badgers home game. Two of the girls went to the game, and everyone but me went to Jordans Big10. Before Tina and Carter took off, we snapped a photo of our two future Badgers.
Brody, Finley, and I headed to Barret and Kelly’s to watch the game. Finley brought her Badger chair along (thanks again Kristen, Dave, and Brady!).
Later on, we all met back up at Jen’s parents’ house. When Claire, Tina, and I arrived, all the other ladies were on a boat ride, so we headed to the “Relaxation Station” which is a big floating raft with lounge chairs all facing the middle. It felt nice to chill in the sun on the water while Finley napped in her carseat under the watchful eye of Jen’s mom.
Finley woke up and I forced her to take a picture with me. Claire picked out this outfit, and I thought she looked adorable in it. I can’t remember who got it for her, so if you did and you read my blog, thank you again!
The sun was going down as we hung out on a blanket on the grass under a tree. Carter and Finley had a little play date.
The rest of the night included dinner and Cards Against Humanity. LOVE this game! It’s very similar to Apples to Apples but more offensive and inappropriate. We played it for a couple hours, and guess who won?!?! Me! This is surprising because I am not a funny person. When I told Brody that I won, he didn’t believe it, and also said “But you’re not funny.”
On Sunday morning, Nicole, who couldn’t come for the whole weekend, was able to drive to Madison for a few hours. We all met at Bluephies for breakfast. I had the Avocado Extravagance scrambler; it was delicious and I ate it all. Thank you, breastfeeding.
One thing we all wanted to do this weekend was go back to the Pi Phi house on campus. All of us lived in the house for at least a semester; many of us were there for two years (like me). The sorority houses on Madison’s campus are gorgeous, but in my opinion, Pi Phi is one of the best because of the location. It is directly behind the Langdon dorm, right on the Lake Mendota. It is the only sorority house with a dock.
After breakfast we made our way downtown. While walking past another sorority house, we realized recruitment was going on. This was kind of timely considering that’s when and how we all met. Unfortunately, we didn’t go in the Pi Phi house because they were busy getting ready for the future rushees (not sure what the new name is for future sorority girls) but headed to the back of the house to see the dock and patio overlooking the lake. That’s when we saw Shirley, our house mom, through the window.
All of us had thought she had left but we were obviously wrong. She remembered all of our faces and even my name. We reminisced about the “good ol’ days”: Jen stepping on a nail the night after the Mifflin Street Block Party (also RIP) and the Kappa Sig panty raid that resulted in a dance party in the foyer and a lap dance for Shirley. Good times.
We said goodbye to the Pi Phi house, Shirley, Nicole, and her son, Silas, and on our way to the Terrace, made a pit stop at MacTaggart’s for water.
At the Terrace, we found a table in the shade and enjoyed our ice cream.
I attempted to take a few candid shots but was caught. Claire and Jen then pretended to act natural which resulted in a fake smile and a posed hand position.
We had a lovely afternoon hanging out and wished we could do it more often. This will definitely be an annual thing (just not always on Labor Day weekend and not always in Madison).
Who’s who (clockwise from bottom left): Amy, Tina, Claire, Jen, me, Sara (who is holding Finley), and Lindsay. #piphilove
It was a fun-filled weekend, and I feel so lucky to have these girls as my friends. With the weddings almost done, we have nothing that forces us to come together. This is why we are determined to have an annual reunion weekend.