College Tip: Rent an HDTV with campusTVs

It happens every year: that awkward conversation between you and your roommate(s) about who is going to get a TV for your dorm or apartment. You consider splitting the price of a TV, but then realize…what are you going to do with it at the end of the year? You consider skipping the TV altogether, only to discover that Homeland, The Walking Dead, and American Horror Story are all coming back for their new seasons this fall. To avoid all this hassle and confusion, campusTVs has come up with a solution.

With campusTVs, you an07.28.14 Campus TVs Final Creatived your roommates have the option to rent an HDTV for the year! This way, you can split the cost without worrying about what will happen come the end of the semester. You know how we feel about rental textbooks, and we have a good feeling about rental televisions too! On top of the obvious convenience factor, they also offer free delivery, setup, and pick-up so you don’t have to worry about transportation logistics – especially nice if you live far from school.

And for those of you that can’t live without your Game of Thrones or Orange is the New Black, you can upgrade to a Smart TV by adding a Roku Box. This allows you to stream to all your favorite TV shows and movies right from your Netflix, HBOGo, HuluPlus accounts and more! Just remember to study in between!

Plus, signing up is simple. Head to campusTVs’ website and select which options work best for you! Then, sit back and relax – your TV will be delivered, set up, and picked up for free!

Just imagine, you won’t have to deal with those difficult conversations between you and your roommate(s) and your TV will be delivered, setup, and picked up for free!

Written by Guest Blogger, Kat P.

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An Interview with Marvel Editor-in-Chief, Axel Alonso

We had the opportunity to pick the brain of Marvel’s Editor-in-Chief, Mr. Axel Alonso. He gave us the inside scoop on everything from the changes coming to some famous Marvel characters to advice for college students pursuing their dreams. Keep reading to find out what else we learned from one of the most important people in the Marvel Universe. Plus, we’re giving you the chance to win a copy of Guardians of the Galaxy: Art of the Movie! Find it all hereFull posts →

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Back to Campus Checklist

The new semester is slowly – but surely – sneaking up on us. It’s easy to procrastinate when it comes to preparing for the new term, but we’re here to help you get ready sooner rather than later. Avoid the last-minute scrambling and take a look at our checklist below. Then, when it really is time to head back to school, you can focus on fun (rather than stress).

First, things first…

Before You Get to CampusThere are a few things to get done before you even set foot on campus. Afraid you’ll forget something? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

Let’s get started:

1. Order your textbooks.

2. Create a packing list to stay organized (look below for a great list to get you started!)

3. Purchase the items on your list that you don’t already have.

3. Spend quality time with your friends and family.

4. Eat at your favorite restaurant at home.

5. Make a picture collage to hang in your dorm room.

6. Talk to your roommate and get to know each other.

7. Schedule (and attend!) all necessary doctor appointments in and fill out any forms you may need.

8. Take a relaxing day off and enjoy a day trip to the beach.

9. Get a fresh new haircut.

10. Decide if you need a credit card or debit card.

11. Update your music.

 Next up…

Time to PackPacking to head back to campus can be stressful. What’s the good news? It doesn’t have to be! Check out our list below to help you get started…

Packing ListNow that you have a general idea of what to pack, you need to think of how to pack. Packing efficiently will save you time and precious space in your suitcase.

Packing Tips!

  1. You do not need to bring every single thing in your closet! Chances are you will get a bunch of free t-shirts during freshman year; so don’t feel the need to pack every single one. Additionally, there’s a good chance you’ll visit home during Thanksgiving or Fall break, so hold off on packing all of your heavy winter items until then.
  2. Be practical when you are packing! If you didn’t wear something in high school, you probably won’t wear it in college. Consider donating unused items instead.
  3. If you can, keep your clothes on hangers when transporting them to school! It will save you so (re: SOOOOO) much time by not having to un-hang and re-hang all your clothes.
  4. Check to see what your school provides! For example, some schools may provide a microwave in a common room. Knowing this will save you money and space in your car when packing.
  5. Coordinate with your roommate. Make sure you know what he/she is bringing so that you don’t bring duplicates.

You’ve done all of the planning. You’ve packed your suitcase(s). Moving on to…

When You Arrive on CampusYou made it! You’ve arrived on campus and you’re ready to start the new semester. However, there are a few things left do before the new term kicks off.

  1. Pick up your textbooks. The campus bookstore often gives you the option to pick up your order in-store…for free!
  2. Get your student ID card if you don’t have it already.
  3. Organize your room. Make sure everything is in order for the first day.
  4. Map out your classes so you know exactly where to go. Avoid the terror of walking into the wrong lecture hall.
  5. Keep your door open and start meeting new people!
  6. Check out your college bookstore and get a new t-shirt to display your school pride.
  7. Look at your school’s calendar for upcoming events, like homecoming.
  8. Think about how you will get involved! Check out different clubs, sports, or Greek life and see which interest you.

You’re all set! Get ready for a great semester ahead.

Written by Guest Blogger, Kat P. of Elon University

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College Move-In Day Essentials

Between the packing lists, the checklists, the textbook lists…you probably feel like it’s impossible to forget anything you might need for your freshman year. But then, move-in day comes along and you’re left wishing you had a few extra things with you! To prevent this from happening you, we made a list of things to help you avoid those feelings of “I wish I brought that…” on move-in day!

Item #1: Tape Measure – Most freshman dorms tend to be on the smaller side. Therefore, it is key to have the perfect furniture arrangement. An easy way to do this without wasting time and energy on moving desks and beds all over is to bring a tape measure! Simply measure the item you plan on moving and see if that length fits in the spot you want it…before you haul it across the room.

Item #2: Handtruck – Moving in as a freshman, I guarantee your car will be filled to the top with all of your college stuff. To avoid making one hundred trips back and forth to your car (not to mention avoid any potential back pain the next day), invest in a handtruck! With these, you can pile up heavy boxes and crates and easily wheel them to your dorm room. Plus, most handtrucks will fold up so you won’t have to worry about sacrificing any room in the car. These work very well with mini-fridges and other heavy appliances.

Item #3: Mini fan – No matter how high the air conditioning is on in your dorm (if there IS air conditioning), it is going to be hot! With everyone moving in at once, the hallway becomes very hectic with people moving things in left and right. To stay cool amidst the craziness, I recommend bringing a mini fan that you can simply pull out anytime you need a wave of cold air.

Move In Day EssentialsGeneral Tips:

  1. Wear comfortable clothes and sneakers! You are going to be moving boxes and other college supplies, not going to a fashion show. Your feet will thank you later.
  2. Bring water! Trust me, you will need to stay hydrated. Keep some water on hand to stay cool.
  3. Know where you packed scissors! Chances are you are going to need to open things once you arrive. It will save you time and stress if you can easily access them!
  4. Label everything! Someone else will probably have the same plastic drawers or lamp as you. To avoid any confusion, label all your things with your name and dorm room/number. Also if anything gets lost, they will know where to find you!
  5. Breathe! You will have all year to make sure everything in your room is just right. There is no need to stress over little things or get upset if you don’t like how something is arranged, you can always move it!

Written by Kat P. of Elon University

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The IT List: Full Steam(punk) Ahead!

One trend we are loving for fall is steampunk. Now, there’s a good chance you’re thinking, “What is steampunk?”. We like to think of it as what the past would look like if the future had happened sooner. It’s a style that emerged from a sub-genre of science fiction that mixes the Victorian Era with the Industrial Revolution (cool, right?). It might seem intimidating at first – the intricate designs and costume-like silhouettes – but you don’t have to go full-blown Helena Bonham Carter to rock this quirky trend. Find out how we pull style inspiration from all things steampunk

One way to make a trend like this more wearable is by working it into your accessories. I like to think of this method as “catwalk” to “sidewalk”, a way to make couture more everyday. I’ve pulled together an “inspiration board” to help you kickstart your journey into the world of steampunk.

Steampunk Inspiration Board

Shop The Look: Ring: Etsy ($33) Pocket WatchEtsy ($24.75) Velvet BootsModcloth ($120) SunglassesAliexpress ($4.31)

Being the college-loving bunch that we are, we also can’t resist the steampunk-inspired school supplies from Pierre Belvédère. In particular, we’re big fans of the Agendas pictured below.  The best part? They’re available at your campus bookstore!

Pierre Belvedere Beauty Shot

How do you plan to work some steampunk into your every day style? Post a comment below!

Written by Guest Blogger, Chloe L. of Penn State

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5 Benefits of Coconut Oil

Recently, I’ve been very into natural and homemade solutions for every day needs.  I’ve found that coconut oil works wonders for so many different things! I came across an awesome article (find it here!) about various uses you might not even have thought of. Here are my top five favorites:

1) Make-up remover: apply coconut oil to a cotton ball and use to remove eye make-up, lather it on your face to remove face makeup

2) Skin Moisturizer/Lotion: It leaves your skin feeling incredibly smooth!

3) Shaving Cream: Coconut Oil as a shaving cream is perfect for people with sensitive skin.  It helps hydrate your skin as you’re shaving!

4) Clean Your Makeup Brushes:  A great technique for keeping your make-up brushes free of bacteria!  Mix antibacterial soap with coconut oil into a cup, swish your brushes around, and let them sit for a few minutes.  Fantastic!

5) Fighting Dandruff: Massage coconut oil into the scalp!

Find out a few other genius uses for it here. Do you have any suggestions?

Written by Guest Blogger, Ilana S. of Rutgers University

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“Ultimate Dining Hall Hacks”: Banana Boats

One thing I missed the most during freshman year was my mom’s homemade cooking and yummy snacks.  I remember finding myself dreading another meal at the dining hall or having the same boring granola bar. All I wanted was a tasty new recipe to try that would switch up my repetitive meal routine, despite the limited resources I had (from living in a college dorm with a meal plan).

Ultimate Dining Hall HacksIf only I had the Ultimate Dining Hall Hacks by Priya KrishnaFilled with tons of quick and easy recipes, this book offers college students a way to break free from everyday dining hall foods and snacks by turning them into delicious cooking creations.  As an added bonus, many of these recipes are so simple that you can make them right from your dorm room!

One recipe that jumped out at me immediately was for the scrumptious and clever snack, banana boats!  Besides the fact that you can customize these to fit your tastes, this is the perfect simple and fast snack to make any time of the day.

 

Here’s what you’ll need:

- Banana
- Toppings of your choice (Great options include coconut shavings, chocolate chips, granola, nuts, or M&Ms.)
- Microwave

Here’s what you’ll do:

  1. Use a knife to make a slit in the banana peel by cutting it down the length of one side.  Use your fingers to slightly pull open the top of the banana.  Do not remove the peel.
  2. Fill the banana with your toppings.
  3. Microwave the banana for 30 seconds at a time about three times, or until the peel is dark and the toppings are slightly melted.
  4. To eat, use a spoon to scoop the filling out of the peel.

For more amazing recipes be sure to pick up your own copy of Ultimate Dining Halls Hacks by Priya Krishna. You’ll find everything from mango parfaits, to pizza bagels, to mac and cheese. Basically, she’s covered how to take breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snack needs to the next level!  Trust me, for those days when all you want is your mom’s homemade cooking, you will be so happy you have a recipe book like this during your college career.

Written by Kat P. of Elon University

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World Cup Finals Preview

After one of the most memorable World Cups in recent memory, it is finally down to the final two teams.  Each match seemed to be more exciting than the next with upsets and drama at every stage of the tournament.  In the end, it’s all going to come down to one game on Sunday though.  On Sunday July 13th at 3pm, Argentina will take on Germany for the most coveted trophy in all of soccer.  Germany is heading into the final game after playing one of the best games in German soccer history.  They dismantled the home team favorite Brazil 7-1 (yes, seven to one) and seem to be reaching their peak at the right time.  After a shaky performance in the group stages and some unconvincing wins in the elimination stages, this German team is finally implementing the efficient style of play that the world knew they were capable of.  Their semi-final win against Brazil will be talked about for years to come and Germany hopes to carry the momentum from that win into the finals (hopefully, without letting it inflate their egos too much).

It’s very important that the German team goes in with level heads. After all, they will be going up against what might be the best player in the world right now, Lionel Messi.  Messi is hoping to put himself in the “best-soccer-player-of-all-time” conversation and adding a World Cup Championship might give him the boost he needs – especially since he’s already the dominating playmaker and scorer on the team. Argentina is coming off of a very (re: very) different semi-final game than Germany.  Their game against The Netherlands ended in a penalty kick shoot out after both teams failed to score a goal during both regular time and overtime.  The lack of goals was the result of a deliberate strategy by The Netherlands.  They sacrificed much of their offense by having one man stay near Messi at all times, with others quickly swarming whenever he got the ball.  Because they had to pay so much attention to the Argentine, it was harder for them to push men forward and develop any sort of serious offensive threat.  The game plan worked at first – Messi never had enough room to have a shot on goal.  However, Argentina won the shootout, ultimately punching their ticket to the finals.

It will be interesting to see what strategy Germany uses in the next game.  The Netherlands proved that paying extra attention to Messi can stop him from taking over the game, but at the sacrifice of applying serious offensive pressure. Because Brazil’s Neymar was injured for the semi-final game, we did not get to see how Germany would have handled a single player who poses such an offensive threat. However, Argentia will have to make sure the defense is on point in order to avoid any potentially dangerous turnovers. During the Germany vs. Brazil game, the defense lacked organization and the Germans used the confusion to create space and complete plenty of passes.  Germany did an excellent job of converting a Brazilian mistake into a goal in the semi-finals and will look to do the same against Argentina.

This final has the potential to be an extremely exciting game.  The well-oiled machine that is team Germany will look to take down a man widely considered the best soccer player on the planet. Will Messi take over and really cement himself as one of the all-time greats, like fellow Argentine Maradona or Brazilian soccer legend Pele?  Will Germany sacrifice some offensive firepower to contain him or will trying to contain him be their entire strategy?  Will this “golden generation” of German players leave their mark on German soccer history by finishing up with a World Cup victory?  All these questions will be answered in what’s shaping up to be an extremely competitive World Cup final.

Written by Guest Blogger, Jared B. of Vanderbilt University

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Staying Inspired During College

With readings, exams, and extra curricular activities on your plate, it is very common to feel overwhelmed and exhausted by all of the work that we have to do.  Especially during freshman year, when students are still adjusting, it is difficult to stay calm in moments of distress.  Don’t worry though; I have some great tips for you to keep you inspired and feeling strong when things get hard at school.

Number one; create an inspiration board and paste it on your dorm room wall, ceiling, computer background, or anywhere else you feel that you will see it most.  On your board, make sure to include a variety of pictures and phrases that emit positivity and your vision of happiness and success.  For example, put some pictures of you and your friends smiling and laughing together, a picture of a career you may want to have one day, your favorite animal, etc.  This may seem like a silly idea, but seeing these images around you on a daily basis will serve as inspiration for you to work harder in everything that you do and remember what it is that you are working for.  Also, during those times of crisis, such as finals week, you will be able to stay strong, knowing that all of the things you love and want to have are on their way if you keep working hard.

Number two; make it a part of your college life to – every so often – go to a new place or interact with new people.  It is so easy to get stuck in a routine and feel uninspired, which can make our crises seem even worse.  It is important that, as college students, we try new things…clubs, food, talking to new people even when we feel very shy, etc.  These new opportunities will keep us inspired and in a better mood so that when crises strike, we will know how to handle them head on!

Number three; what better way to calm a crisis than to avoid one in the first place? A great way to prevent crises from happening is to keep yourself in enough of routine.  Your day does not need to be 100% scheduled, but it is important to keep yourself somewhat structured and organized so that you can get a good amount of work done each day without saving it all for the last minute, which could cause a lot of potential stress.

School can definitely be a bit stressful sometimes, but it is important to remember to remain calm and inspired through these difficult moments.  Live your college life with inspiration, structure, and goals, and you will be sure to have less stress and crises in your life.  Good luck!

Written by Guest Blogger, Ilana S. of Rutgers University

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Beach Bag Essentials

Summer has arrived and it’s time to hit the beach! Now that you’ll be having some fun in the sun it’s important to be prepped and prepared with the perfect beach bag full of your summertime essentials. Here are some of the things that I like to keep stowed away for my beach days:

This straw tote from Target is super chic and since it’s black it matches with everything! The towel is a fun pop of color and very fitting for the beach with it’s fish scale pattern.

As I’m sure you all know by now, sun protection is super important! I opted for this Hawaiian Tropic spray on sunscreen in SPF 50 (gotta protect my Irish skin). It’s super sheer and it smells like coconut, yummy! The EOS lip balm also has SPF 15 to protect your lips AND it smells just like lemons. To protect your eyes, always keep a pair of sunglasses handy. These reflective pair from Nasty Gal are stylish and functional.

Since you’ll be in the sun all day, hydration is super important – so grab a reusable water bottle and fill it to the brim with ice water. Also, it’s good to keep a snack handy. I am in love with the pomegranate blueberry pistachio KIND bars.

In the beauty department, water proof mascara is everything! Lights, Camera, Splashes by Tarte is amazing. It stays put through sweat and salt water. Don’t forget to throw in some hair elastics. I know I always find myself tying my hair up when I’m out in the sun. Try to find a pair that won’t cause breakage to your strands.

Last but abso-LUTELY not least, a beach day wouldn’t be complete without a good book. I highly recommend The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (I’ve already read it four times). And after all, the book is always better than the movie!

What do you keep in your beach bag?

Shop the look: Fishscale Towel from Target ($14.99), Nasty Gal Sunglasses ($18), Target Merona Straw Tote ($27.99), Hawaiian Tropic Sheer Touch Clear Spray SPF 50 ($7.99), EOS Lemon Drop Lip Balm with SPF 15 ($3.29), Pomegranate Blueberry Pistachio KIND Bar ($1.39/bar), J. Crew Water Bottle in Soft Mint ($19.50), Scunci No Damage Hair Elastics ($2.99), Tarte Lights, Camara, Splashes Waterproof Mascara ($20), The Fault in Our Stars by John Green ($9.99)

Written by Guest Blogger, Chloe L. of Penn State

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