Do’s and Don’t’s of College Packing

Summer is almost over which means it’s time to start packing for school. My first year at college, I definitely overpacked and filled my dorm room with a bunch of things I never touched. At the same time, there are some things I didn’t bring that I really wish I had. If you’re going into your freshman year of college and you have no idea what to bring for your dorm room, here are some do’s and don’ts.

DO bring a rain jacket and rain boots.

Initially, not only did I not bring either of these things, and I didn’t own them either. In high school I never would have been caught dead in rubbery rainboots, but in college when you’re walking around campus they are essential and will save all of your cuter shoes from being damaged.

DON’T bring a ton of books.

You might think you’re going to read them all, but I assure you, you won’t.

DO bring medication.

Create a little first aid kit for yourself with your vitamins, Advil, bandaids, etc.

DON’T overdecorate.

Decorating your dorm room is fun and decorations might look pretty, but the truth is you’re being put into a very small space with limited room. Too many decorations will just make your room look cluttered.

DO bring a full length mirror.

You’re going to want to check out your full outfit, and a little vanity mirror just won’t do.

DON’T bring a ton of jewelry.

Odds are you either won’t wear it or you’ll end up lending it to someone and not getting it back. Bring a few key pieces you know you’ll wear, and that’s it.

DO bring reusable water bottles.

Instead of wasting money on plastic water bottles, bring a reusable one that you can fill up with water fountains.

DON’T bring multiple pairs of heels.

You’re not going to want to wear heels walking from class to class and no one really wears heels to frat parties. Bring one neutral pair in case of a special occasion.

DO bring one or two nice outfits.

Bring one nice dress or a pencil skirt and blazer because you never know when you might have an interview or a formal occasion.

DON’T bring a ton of school supplies.

Most of your college work will be done online, so there really isn’t much use for a ton of binders. Instead, bring a few folders for loose papers and a notebook or two.

DO bring two sets of bedsheets.

When you wash one set of sheets, you’ll be able to replace them with a new, clean set.

DON’T bring an iPad.

An iPad isn’t necessary in college as long as you have a cell phone and laptop.

DO bring a steamer.

I used my steamer a ton in college. It’s a useful thing to have in case all of your folded tops get wrinkled.

Packing for college is exciting, but stressful all at the same time. It’s exciting to know college is so close, but if it’s your first time leaving home you might not know exactly what to bring. Hopefully you find these do’s and don’ts helpful. Good luck!

A Years Time

It’s amazing how much can change in a year. From last August, to this current August, my life has changed drastically in ways I wasn’t expecting. Often, we know when to expect change. I always knew ever since I was a little girl that the year 2015 would be a big year for me and I would graduate from high school and leave home for college. I knew this change was coming. I was ready for it.

Still, some changes aren’t quite as expected. This year has brought a lot of change I wasn’t expecting. This day last year, my stepfather passed away suddenly, and I think this is what has caused me to analyze change so much. This one, hurtful moment changed my life in many ways. It affected me emotionally, and heavily impacted my family dynamic. It brought a lot of heartache and created many obstacles for my family that we are still working through. This was a change I did not have planned. This was a change that was not welcomed.

There have been great things that have happened this year too. I started dating my best friend, I got an internship, I got a position on the executive committee for my sorority, I made new friends, although while also losing some, and I declared myself as a double major. So much can change in a day- a minute even- let alone a year. It’s crazy to think how far I’ve come from last summer to this summer, and yet how much I’ve stepped back. Some aspects of my life that weren’t blooming quite as much last summer, such as my professional life or my love life, are doing very well now. Other aspects that may have been great, seem to be at a low point right now.

Still, I am not worried. I know that soon, even more crazy unexpected events will occur, good and bad. The good might not be good forever, but neither will the bad. Even more change is expected to come by next summer as I will hopefully be graduating college and officially moving out of the home I’ve been living in for the past ten years. I’ll have to say goodbye to a lot of great people, but I believe when the time comes I will be ready. For now, I am going to live in the moment and do my best to accept change as it comes and believe the universe has a plan for me. Still, it’s nice to look back and reflect on what my life once was way back when.

Everyday Summer Outfits

Summer is almost over, but it’s not too late for some summer outfit inspiration! Here are two everyday looks that you can wear while the weather is still warm.

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Here I am wearing a very trendy cropped off the shoulder top from Urban Outfitters. I love the way this top looks, but unfortunately whenever I move my arms the sleeves shift up which is extremely frustrating, especially since the top is cropped as it just exposes my entire midriff. My shorts are from PacSun and are my favorite pair of high waisted shorts. I am also wearing metallic sandals from Forever 21 and layered gold necklaces also from Forever 21.

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Taking pictures was so hard because it was so windy out that my hair was just all over the place. The weather has been terrible this summer, it never stops storming. I had originally wanted to make this a larger cookbook, but just couldn’t seem to find a nice photoshoot day.

Anyways, I’m obsessed with this jumpsuit for days like today that are a bit rainy and chilly. My jumpsuit is from Aeropostale and I am wearing the same sandal/necklace combo from my last outfit from Forever 21.

Find the jumpsuit here

Find top here

Find similar shorts here

Find similar necklace here

July Faves

July is over, I am no longer a teenager, and I have a month left of summer.My favorites haven’t changed that much since June, but here’s a quick update.

Beauty

  • Avon Speed Dry Nail Polish in the shade Just Peachy– This is a very old nail polish I have, but still one of my favorites. The speed dry formula really does dry within minutes, and the color lasts just over a week without chipping. Not to mention this shade is such a pretty orange that is subtle, but perfect for summer. Unfortunately, this nail polish is so old that Avon doesn’t even make it any more. Still, I managed to find some sellers on Ebay is you’re interested in finding a summer nail polish that will dry faster and last longer.
  • Conair Infiniti Curling Wand Styler– I have been curling my hair quite a lot this summer because I find it looks best with my new ombre color. Also, I love to curl my hair on days I don’t wash because it makes my hair look a little more put together and the curls last even longer. Conner makes excellent curling wands for good prices if you are looking to buy one!
  • Hard Candy So Baked Bronzer in the shade Tiki– I’ve been writing about this product all summer, but I really have been using it daily. I use it as everything which makes my makeup routine way quicker and so simple. I can have my makeup done in 10 minutes or less. I apply my regular foundation and concealer, and use Tiki as my eyeshadow, blush, bronzer, and highlight. Then I just throw on a little bit of mascara, and my summer look is complete!

Fashion

  • Aerie bikinis- Aerie is one of my all time favorite places to buy bikinis. I find they have the biggest selection that caters to all different body types.
  • Pretty sandals– Sandals are a summer staple. I love to wear sandals with pretty detailing that makes my outfit pop just a little bit more.
  • Stacks of bracelets– Lately I’ve been really into wearing all of my stacks of bracelets. Some of my favorite places to buy these trendy bracelets are Alex and Ani, Helberg Diamonds, and Kohls!
  • Layered necklaces– This has been a huge trend for the summer and I’m lovin’ it. I used to love chokers in the fall, but I feel this trend is much girlier and cute for summer.
  • Cross body bags- I always carry a cross body bag with me because it is by far the most convenient. They are the perfect size, stylish, and won’t kill your shoulders.

Entertainment

  • The Beginner’s Guide to Zen Buddhism by Jean Smith– This book is great if you have any sort of interested in living a zen lifestyle. You’ll learn how to properly meditate and receive many different tips and tricks to find comfort in stillness. You’ll also learn about the Four Noble Truths, and much more that can get you started on your journey with spirituality.
  • Jenna Marbles– In the summer, I’m always spending my free time watching random YouTube videos. Jenna Marbles is definitely my favorite YouTuber because her content is so original and hilarious, and seems to only get better. I can spend hours watching her videos.
  • Safiya Nygaard- I’ve recently discovered Safiya and I find her videos not only entertaining, but also informative. She posts many videos trying out different products that I have found myself interested in buying. She’ll confirm whether the product is worth the price and the hype, or not.

Food

  • Dark chocolate– I have such a sweet tooth and am always looking to indulge in some chocolate. I am a strong believer that chocolate can be healthy as long as it is eaten in moderation. Chocolate has endorphins that can bring happiness, and dark chocolate can even be good for the heart. Just make sure the brands you are eating are high in Cacao and not processed with alkali.
  • Bobs Red Mill Whole Grain Granola, Apple Cinnamon– I’ve never really loved granola that much, but this is by far the best I’ve had. It is perfect to add to a fruit and yogurt parfait, or to add a little something to an acai bowl. I highly recommend this brand and this flavor.

 

20 Things I’ve Learned by 20

Each year we grow older, we grow wiser as well. There is so much to learn about ourselves and the world. Every day of life we learn more and more. Over time, we learn valuable life lessons that better who we are. Over my 20 years of life I have learned many valuable lessons, here are 20 of them.

  1. Take more pictures. You’ll enjoy looking back on the memories.
  2. Don’t let anyone tell you how to feel. Your feelings aren’t something you can control and you have every right to feel the way you do.
  3. Don’t waste time on someone who doesn’t value your feelings. Instead, find people who care about you and who are genuinely interested in your company.
  4. You don’t need to have it all figured out. Life is a journey and you will figure things out along the way.
  5. You will change, and you will grow. Don’t fight it. It’s for the best.
  6. You can’t depend on others. People will let you down. The only person you can depend on is yourself.
  7. Be yourself whether others like you or not. Those opinions of others really don’t matter as much as you might think they do.
  8. Everyone has a bad day, but that doesn’t make it a bad life.
  9. If you truly want something, you have to work for it. Not everything comes easy in life. Putting effort into something you want will lead to reward.
  10. There are tons of mistakes to be made, and even more lessons to learn. Don’t dwell on mistakes or things you could have done better. Just know for next time.
  11. Nobody knows anyone completely. Even if you think you know someone inside and out, you don’t. You have no idea what this person has happening in their head and all the backstory of this person’s life.
  12. Always be honest. If something is bothering you, don’t deny it. Speak up. People fear the truth far too much. Honesty is an admirable quality.
  13. Expecting others to make you happy will more often than not lead to disappointment. Happiness is a choice only you can make.
  14. Figure yourself out before you try to figure out others. Growing up teaches us a lot about ourselves. Learn about who you are and what you are interested before you try to learn everything about someone else.
  15. Surrounding yourself with good people will make yourself a better person. It’s important to have friends that give off positive vibes. Make friends who aren’t afraid to be themselves and are free of judgement. Don’t make friends who care too much about what others think and who make you feel bad about yourself.
  16. Take care of your body. Eat healthy foods and go for a run. You will feel healthier and happier.
  17. If he doesn’t like you for who you are, he doesn’t deserve you.
  18. Odds are, whatever is bothering you now won’t be important in a week, so let it go.
  19. Tell your loved ones how much they mean to you. Life is short, and you never know when someone may leave.
  20. Stay true to yourself. Don’t let others dictate your life. Be yourself and honor your values.

Each year brings new and exciting adventures that teach us a lot about ourselves. Over my 20 years of life, I’ve learned so much from my experiences. Still, there is so much in this world I haven’t yet seen and that I can’t wait to learn.

A Week Without Washing My Hair

Whenever I tell people I wash my hair every day, I always get a lot of reactions like “you’re not supposed to do that” or “that’s really bad for your hair.” I know, I know, hair is apparently not supposed to be washed everyday that way it can produce its own natural oils. But I can’t help it. My hair gets greasy. And every time I say this, I get the response “that’s only because your hair is used to being washed daily.” Yeah, yeah, whatever. I can’t help it. I can’t stand the grease to be able to withhold from washing my hair long enough that this doesn’t happen. But this week, I challenged myself. I challenged myself to go a full week without washing my hair. I got to try out some new and fun hairstyles with this little experiment, but besides that, let’s see how it worked out for me.

Sunday

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I washed my hair Saturday night, leaving my hair fresh and clean for Sunday. Unfortunately, I made the poor decision to go to the beach today which afterwards, left my hair salty and knotty. Overall, I’m off to a rough start.

Monday

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If I could go back, I would have straightened my hair from the jump. Still, my hair actually came out pretty well despite the second day after a windy beach day. My hair remained sleek and surprisingly, not greasy.

Tuesday

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By Tuesday my hair was starting to feel slightly greasy. I dabbed at my roots with some Witch Hazel in hopes to dry it out and pulled my straightened locks into a half-up/half-down pony. Surprisingly, I didn’t need to touch up my hair with a straightening iron at all, as my straight hair had mostly stayed in tact.

Wednesday

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I knew putting my hair down this late into the week was a risky move, but I went with it. No regrets quite yet either, after curling my hair, my hair had lots of texture and volume that I quite liked.

Thursday

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Thursday I regretted my choice to wear my hair down because I woke up with extremely ready hair. Again, I dabbed at my roots with some Witch Hazel, and put my hair up into another half-up/half-down pony. This time, I touched up my curls and although a bit frizzy, I thought my hair looked cute and fun.

Friday

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It is a rare occasion that I wear my hair up, but the grease began to get out of hand and to be too much for even Witch Hazel to fix, so I opted for a pony. I found the ponytail to be great for unwashed hair because my hair didn’t look, nor feel greasy. It stayed out of my face and I don’t think my hair looked all that bad.

Saturday

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Sorry for the shade over my face, but by Saturday I was completely over this. My hair felt disgusting and I was left with no choice but to throw it in a bun because it looked terrible. Saturday after work, I went home and washed my hair, and it was the best I felt in a week.

 

After taking this challenge, I decided I will never go a week without washing my hair again. However, I realized that I do not have to wash my hair everyday. Now, I wash my hair every other day. I have to admit, I notice no difference between the health of my hair, but I do save time and money so I guess that’s a plus!

Goal Completed + Tips on Finding an Internship

A few months ago I posted an article about a goal I had to find a summer internship. I wanted to announce that I have successfully completed this goal and found a summer internship! After a lot of stress, searching, and submissions, I finally found a great internship opportunity for myself.

Trying to find the perfect internship was extremely stressful. Originally, I landed an internship opportunity in New York, but decided to not follow through due to the travel and housing expenses. I found an internship closer to where I live that has the possibility to grow into a job opportunity and I am super excited! I am now interning for The Power of the Patient Project that you can learn more about here.

Finding an internship was difficult, and while I’m no pro at this, I would like to give some advice for any of you looking for internships.

  1. Stay open minded. Apply for jobs that may not even be in your field. There is a lot of experience to be learned.
  2. Apply for as many internships as possible. Even apply for internships you might not seem too interested in because you can use each interview as practice to nail that important interview you finally get.
  3. Watch out for scams! Use websites like glassdoor.com to search companies and read reviews. It’ll save you a lot of time and travel.
  4. Use sites like LinkedIn and Internships.com. They are very useful and make finding/applying for jobs so simple.
  5. Follow your gut. Interning is important, but if you find an internship that you just don’t think is right for you, don’t take it. Keep applying and you’ll eventually find something better suited for you.
  6. Don’t give up! Even when you think there’s no hope, there is.

I will keep you all updated with my intern experience, and good luck to all of you searching for internships!