Thank you! That's all very relevant.
I am hoping to get some advice from you all on getting started as I have not been able to get into the things I want to do yet as a Buddhist. For instance I have not yet constructed any kind of a shrine, figured out vipassana completely, or really figured out things like buddhist days of importance, etc., I understand the concepts, but I trust that to the extent that ritual exists in buddhism it serves a function and I would like to use those functions to further myself and so I want to do all of this as much as I can.
And concerning Bhavana Society I DO intend to go on a retreat there, but it's about a couple hours from where I live (I am in Elkins, WV) and as a student who works full time my ability to take many days off to go there is limited. I'm looking at next summer/spring as a possibility for some retreats but I'll just have to see.