Off to ND...Go Irish, Beat Hurricanes!

You guys - I'm officially taking off tonight for my first Notre Dame home football game in THREE YEARS. And I couldn't be more excited! 

I started planning this trip with Michael back in, I kid you not, March...over oysters before the opera. Since then, I've managed to assemble quite the assorted crew of friends and family to join me! Michael and his friend Ben are flying from North Dakota to O'Hare, and I'm hopping a flight at MSP to meet them.

We're renting a car, and rendezvousing with Laura and her friend Haley en route to South Bend.

When we get there, MY PARENTS and JONATHAN will be waiting! So excited - my family hasn't been back to campus since my graduation weekend...

...and haven't been to a game since my senior game in the fall of 2010.

On game day, we'll see roomie Hal and his family...which means I'll see more of Hal at ND than I do at our shared apartment...ha!

We're all staying at the Reuvers family's "cabin," which is less than a quarter mile from the stadium, and is truly stumbling distance from Heaven on Earth...aka THE BACKER. The cabin is one of the coolest places to stay...from the Longhorns on the wall to the hundreds of framed photos, and of course the life-size Irish Guard in Paul's old uniform!

I cannot wait to spend the weekend doing all my favorite things...visiting the Grotto, watching morning marchout, doing piccolo cheers at Concert on the Steps and inevitably crying during pregame. Shouting all the songs at the top of my lungs at the Backer while trying not to drown in the sludge or get ceiling drips in my Long Island. Singing the Notre Dame "Lord's Prayer" at Basilica Mass and picking up The Shirt and the 2016 holiday ornament at the Bookstore. Maybe even Studebagels, Papa Smurfs, and Cambodia Thai for good measure! 

This trip marks Ben's first Notre Dame trip after a lifetime as an ND fan, and I can't wait to show him campus. Jonathan is legal now, and I'll be taking him to the Backer - our first time going out together! I'm sure there will be drinking games, shot-skis, and cherry bombs with the Reuvers family too - two schools, one heart at its finest. 

Needless to say, this weekend will be one for the record books. Here's to dreaming of an Irish victory over Miami - if Virginia Tech can do it, I like to think we can! Even more importantly, here's to not forgetting my Backer shoes...