How to Be a Good Friend in College

I’m feelin’ this beautiful fall weather at the core of my soul and I LOVE IT.

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I just broke out the boots this morning since they were calling my name from the back of my shoe collection bottom of my shoe pile.

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Let’s catch up by talking about how to be a good friend in college. The edition that doesn’t have to do with carrying your friends home after a frat party (although, that’s also what good friends do).

My friends here in college are honestly some of the best people I’ve ever met, and I am constantly inspired by how much they want to be better people through education, self-sacrifice for the good of others, wholesome experiences, and nourishment of their faith.

Thanks to these wonderful people, I’ve compiled a semi-serious list of…

{how to be a good friend in college…and at any stage in life}

Forget the age/year difference. Freshmen, sophomores, juniors, seniors, and graduate students can all hang out and their social lives will not be tainted. In fact, they will flourish.

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freshmen, sophomores, seniors, and grad women gathering for our freshman friend’s birthday

Have an early breakfast date with a friend. (Walk to the farther dining hall just to eat good omelettes. Bonus points if you both bring your own peanut butter and then take pictures of one another.)

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Be a good lab partner, because college labs can be deathly tedious.

Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable. That’s when the deepest and best connections happen.

Sing and dance like a fool around your friends. If they tell you to stop, you can stop. But try it anyway, they might join you.

Set goals with one another. Whether that’s going to the gym five times a week with a buddy, acing a class, going to church every Sunday…or checking off food bucket list items together.

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#42: Spicy Food at Thai Dish — check!

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Tell your friend if he/she has something in his/her teeth. That feeling of looking into the mirror after talking with lots of friends and seeing stuff stuck in your teeth. You know.

Reserve judgement. We all do silly, stupid, sinful things.

Embrace spontaneity and don’t be afraid to ask your friends to join you. I’m always afraid to ask people to do things with me on a whim because I’m afraid of rejection, but I have learned that I love when people reach out to me to do spontaneous fun things.

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like a movie night and epic hair braiding feat. Lauren’s gorgeous locks and Rachel’s mad skills

Don’t pressure your friends. Peer pressure is real in every way. It’s easy to be pressured and it’s easy to fall into the trap of pressuring others. It’s not the end of the world if either one happens to you. Just be aware.

Pray for your friends. Especially when you kinda don’t want to talk to them/you’re annoyed with them.

Ask for prayers from your friends. You need ’em too.

Branch out. Having a close friend group is so important and good to have. That being said, cliques are overrated, and there are people who really want to know you but are too scared to approach you. You might even be that scared person. Launch out and just talk to people. The people worth having as friends will reciprocate.

Hope you all have a fabulous day!

I don’t know what your hair looks like today, but however it looks, ROCK IT.

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So tell me:

What is one way you can be a good friend/one way your friends have been good to you?

Do you believe “age is but a number” after a certain point in life?

What did you do this weekend?

Where should Rachel and I go next for our food bucket list!?

Happenings on the First Day of Classes

Thinking-Out-Loud

1) So I almost lost my student ID and room key on the first day of classes. But I didn’t! PJ and I had our first “workout” (I did some yoga-y stuff and he took a walk) together of the semester yesterday morning, and of course I had to take a selfie for the occasion…

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PJ is squinting from the sun, and I’m just being Asian

…But at some point within the 10 seconds it took me to take my phone out of the arm sleeve and snap the selfie, I dropped my lanyard in the grass. When we were walking to the dining hall to grab something to eat, I finally noticed that something was missing…(&%$!?) So I [literally] ran back to find my lanyard, praying that no one stole it yet.

2) After finding it, I went back to my dorm room instead of going back to the dining hall. In my dorm I ate salmon jerky and an entire bag of microwave-steamed broccoli.

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3) I was sweaty and smelly at that point, but since I knew I would be walking and dancing later, I didn’t want to take a shower. Thus, I resorted to a sponge bath for my armpits and arms over the sink + a face wash. It probably would have taken the same amount of time to take a quick shower, but guatever.

4) Speaking of dancing, modern dance class yesterday was GLORIOUS. I hadn’t done any artistic movement in such a long time, so you bet your bottom dollar that I am loving this class. To be honest, the class is the most structured and intense workout I’ve done in a while, but I’ll get to that whole update tomorrow.

5) Winner winner dining hall dinner last night:

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That would be my first fruit crisp a la mode of the semester ♥

6) I have my first 8AM class of college ever today woooooooop.

7) Another semester, another banana pyramid in the dorm.

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8) What am I doing with my life?

9) I hope you all have a splendid day. Eat your broccoli and bananas and ice cream!

So tell me:

Do you ever sponge bath/deodorize like a madman, because you know you’ll have to shower later anyway?

Is there an activity that you haven’t done in a while that you’re craving?

What are you doing today?

The Great and Small Things I Learned {Freshman Semester II}

First semester of my freshman year in college came and went…

…second semester came and went…

…and that’s it. But what the heck!? How?

When I was leaving my dorm room for the last time on Friday, I ran into a guy who was in my group from FYSOP— the outreach program I did for my very first week at Boston University. We would say hi to each other on the streets or in the halls throughout the year whenever we saw each other, but this time, we were saying bye because we’re done with freshman year. I felt like we just met at FYSOP.

I guess that anecdote just sums up how weird it feels to be done with freshman year. But just as I learned a lot from my first semester, I learned plenty of great and small things from my second semester.

The Great and Small Things I Learned This Semester II

1. I am the slowest paper writer ever. It takes me an hour per page, at least.

2. People will judge me for my eating choices, but “you do you, I do me, we be civil.” (<— quoting my friend Charli)Processed with VSCOcam with c1 presetLike when I whip out my jar of pb and bring an overly brown banana to the dining hall

3. This.

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4. So many women and men who are close to you struggle with eating disorders. Be kind and gentle, and make resources known.

5. Anatomy and organic chemistry (as basic as those classes were in the grand scheme of things) taught me that the human body is ridiculously beautiful. God is quite the Architect.

6. That being said, anatomy and chem lab suck the life out of me.

7. How to ask other people to go on {friendly} lunch/dinner dates, as opposed to waiting to be asked.

8. Boston doesn’t play around when it comes to winter (*cough* 109 inches of snow).

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9. Sometimes it’s worth hanging out with your friends for just a leeeeetle bit longer before digging into the books.

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10. There is always time for prayer.

11. Just when I thought I couldn’t have a better roommate, she proves me wrong.

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12. I often need to remind myself to step out of my comfort zone.

13. When finals come around and I need to be the most focused, I don’t want to do ANYTHING AT ALL and then motivating myself to study is like climbing Mt. Everest.

14. A little extra friendliness with the faculty and staff will truly make the campus a better place.

15. A little extra friendliness with anyone will truly make the world a better place.

16. Always check your meal plan balance— you never know when you’ll find an extra $185 of dining points in your account.

17. Music is a big part of my stress relief.

18. I miss dance and yoga.

19. I actually do like bacon.

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20. How to be kinder and gentler, thanks to my very kind and gentle friends.

21. I have discovered the fun and motivation of a workout buddy.

22. Boston University food is better than Northeastern University food. Confirmed by the bro.

24. I’ll run, but only when I really feel like it.

25. Rachel and I can live for a week+ together without getting totally annoyed with each other 😉

 

26. The Boston Marathon energy is unreal and so inspiring!

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27. Make sure to check footwear before walking out the door.

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28. It’s okay to miss more workouts than usual.

29. I am not as punctual as I thought I was. #whoops

30. I curse more than I used to. #OhSh—Crap

31. How to take myself less seriously.

32. How to constantly strive for improvement with God’s help.

33. I have a family away from home, and it’s still growing!

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34. I’m a better person coming out of my freshman year of college, thanks to said family.

35. Bitter goodbyes will just make for the sweetest hellos.

A special thank you goes out to my real family (Madre, Pop, and Ben) for being supportive and loving throughout my whole college experience. I literally could not do this without you!

I hope you all have a fabulous Tuesday!

So tell me:

Three things you’ve learned in 2015 so far (or from college this year).

One thing you can continue to improve in yourself. 

What It Feels Like To…

College is all about new experiences. We have the big ones like moving into the dorm, joining new clubs, passing those incredibly difficult exams, and graduating (whoa, far into the future, eh?). But we also have all the little ones in between. This weekend I reflected on some of the small, new things I experienced, both good and not so good.

After this past week, I now know what if feels like to…

Have Thanksgiving dinner before Thanksgiving day.

It feels kinda wrong, but oh so right. Thank you, dining halls!

Stuffing ♥ ♥ ♥ 

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pumpkin pie + white chocolate cranberry cookie!

Cook a steak.

I felt so flustered. Have you ever thought about how you might feel if you were thrown into the show Chopped and you got choked up? Yeah, this was that feeling.

The people for whom I work asked me to cook up two steaks that they had in the freezer and I agreed since they had so much faith in me. LOL.

I was looking up “how to cook steak” and “how to defrost frozen steak” on my phone and trying to decide the best/safest ways to do both and ahhhhhhhhhh. I think I did okay with the defrosting and the initial sear on the steaks, but then I overcooked the steaks in the oven. I gave them well done when they requested rare and medium rare. *facepalm*

They said it was really good, but I think they were being nice. Maybe the baked potatoes and tuna salad I also made for them redeemed me.

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This was actually delicious!

Be at a hockey game where Boston University Terriers pull out an awesome win!

So much pride.

We won 3-2 against University of Maine at overtime!

Watch a quality romantic comedy.

ALL THE FEELS. I watched About Time with a bunch of friends on Saturday night, and it might be one of my new favorite movies. Watch it if you have not yet!

Have America’s Next Top Model as a roommate.

It’s fantastic for the self-esteem, really. (jokes jokes.)

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© Christina Chu

(I also know what it feels like to basically have a pro photographer as a friend!)

She might not actually be America’s Next Top Model, but she totally could be, right?! She modeled for a fashion show this weekend and I heard many rave reviews that she killed it on the runway. Evidently. I live in the same room as this beautiful person!!!

Run five miles.

Besides feeling kinda uncomfortable because I needed to go to the bathroom the whole time, I felt amazing! That’s the longest I’ve run without stopping to date. Yay!

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I started the GPS about ½ a mile into my run, so the 5 miles were hit, I promise!

Oh, and for the record, a “running high” is quite similar to a burpee high… But the view and fresh air that comes with running is a wonderful bonus 🙂

Pay over $3.00 for just the dry cycle for my laundry.

That feeling would be rage-y.

One extra long cycle apparently wasn’t enough for my load of laundry (which wasn’t especially large or anything), and I was still left with super damp clothes by the end of it. I contemplated air drying it all, but there’s no space in the dorm for that and all the clothes were too wet anyway. Thus, I bit the bullet and paid for another full dry cycle. That totaled to $4.75 for laundry.

Life.

So there you have it! Some of my latest and greatest new experiences!

Something I’ve been thinking about doing is posting shorter yet more frequent update/musings kinds of blog posts instead of longer, spaced out dump-my-life-on-you posts. I don’t want to sacrifice quality for quantity, but I’m hoping to spark interesting conversations about things that pop up during my day that I find worthwhile putting into a post. Does that make sense?

Basically, I want to try to post more often with less content (unlike this lengthy, random post) while having a more specific focus in each post. If that still doesn’t make sense, then we’ll just see how this all unfolds, won’t we?

Have a marvelous Monday, friends! I’m going home for Thanksgiving tomorrow what whattttttt.

So tell me:

After this weekend, I now know what if feels like to_________.

Do you like tuna salad?

(I can post the recipe for the tuna salad I made if ya want! It’s pretty bomb if I do say so myself.)

What is your favorite romantic comedy?

Keeping Sane in College

I know, I know. I’m just a college freshman who is three-and-a-half weeks into school and doesn’t know the real meaning of insanity of college. I get it, I’m still a fetus in this place we call the world. But I think I’m speaking on behalf of a lot of my peers when I say that things are finally starting to settle into a routine— we’re getting into a groove, you could say. 🙂

Needless to say, going off to college for the first time ever is a nerve-wracking experience, and anything that entails big changes can make me anxious pretty easily. However, I am grateful to God for providing such a welcoming, supportive environment for me here at Boston University that has allowed me to immerse myself into this whole university deal without major troubleshooting. Knock on wood.

I’ve noticed some routines and patterns in these past 3.5 weeks that have helped me stay sane during school, and I’m here to share them with you all! Many of you are not in school anymore, but the “real world” and the college world both involve work and balance, so these little tips could apply to anyone!

keeping sane in college

1) Chip away at work

This one is HUGE. No one enjoys the panic of doing an assignment at the last minute before it’s due. For me, the best thing to combat this is to steadily chip away at every bit of studying and homework that I need to do throughout the week.

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I like to make a list of the work I need to accomplish, and then prioritize by numbering the tasks in the order I want to do them. Lastly, a check box is necessary so that you can have that oh-so-wonderful feeling of checking off the task.

It also doesn’t hurt to do an extra task that wasn’t initially on your list, then write it in your planner, and then check it off. 😉

2) Eat a good breakfast

{That involves peanut butter.} I don’t care what new scientific research says about breakfast not really being the most important meal of the day. In my mind (and heart), breakfast is the most essential meal in getting my day cranking properly. I have a huge 3-4 hour block of early classes on many days, so I need a substantial breakfast to help me focus and stay friendly.

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America runs on Dunkin. Alison runs on peanut butter.

3) Sleep

It’s not always easy, but it’s absolutely necessary.

That being said, I try not to freak out if I didn’t get X hours of sleep, because that just makes me more anxious and prone to sleeplessness. Fatigue is not the end of the world and power naps make the world go ’round.

4) Exercise

Now I’m starting to sound so cliche-healthy-living-blogger. But seriously, making time to move and groove several times a week helps to clear my mind, keep my confidence lifted, and feel more focused on my work, even if that means doing burpees in the dorm room. Y’all know how much I love that anyway.

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Sorta miss these stairs. Or do I?

5) Make time for social events

I do my best to make studying my priority, but attending extracurricular activities or just having lunch with friends keeps me laughing and motivated (I work more efficiently when I know I have an event to attend later in the evening). I still don’t go to every single activity or meeting, but talking to people is some of the best stress relief out there.

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I can’t keep my mouth closed evidently.

6) Listen to music

There’s a lot of walking required to get around campus, so listening to music has been an awesome way to put some pep into my step, make me want to dance…and make me almost trip over train tracks. Worth it. Listening to a song with a solid beat while walking down the streets of Boston makes me feel like a BOSS.

{iTunes radio and Pandora have been my favorite things recently!}

7) Pray

Talking to our Creator is the bestest.

8) Read blogs/Blog

Both blog-reading and blogging have been on the back burner recently, as you might have been able to tell. But those two things constitute some of my quality “me time,” so I try to read a few blogs while eating meals and write a post or two after I finish my homework (like right now!). It makes me happy staying in touch with my readers and fellow bloggers!

I also like to fantasize about all the new fall recipes that are abounding on the blog world since I’m bitter that I don’t have a kitchen right now it will be soon that I can make ALL THE PUMPKIN THINGS!

9) Keep the dorm room clean

Laundry, cleaning up after my peanut butter/banana messes, vacuuming (YUP, vacuuming!), and washing dishes— keeping on top of all of that makes for less clutter in the room and less clutter in my mind. (<— wow, so zen.)

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Not nearly as clean as this (when I first moved in), but it’s not too shabby.

10) Keep in touch with my family

My face lights up whenever I get a text from my mom or I FaceTime with my parents. Keeping them in the loop on a regular basis also helps to motivate me (they’re the reason I’m here!), and it helps me remember that I always have a shoulder to lean on. I also just love them to pieces, so I like talking to them 🙂

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No, we’re not twins.

So there are my nuggets of freshman wisdom for you! I should go to bed because I’m sure my typing might be annoying my sleeping roomie. Catcha ya later!

Oh, and you best be sure I’m thinking out loud with Amanda today!

Thinking-Out-Loud

So tell me:

How do you keep sane?

Most important meal in your opinion?