College Must-Have’s – a REAL List of What You Need

By now, almost everyone who’s graduating this year has already done so. For now, the summer is probably progressing for new graduates the same way it always has. Wake up when you want, go outside and get some sunburn, then take a nap. Get up, play some video games until mom or dad makes dinner and then go to bed. But come August, the honeymoon is over. It’s off to college. Then begins a different kind of honeymoon. With no parents there to yell at you to get your lazy keister out of bed for your 8 AM classes, you might be tempted to give them a miss. Let me tell you, if you want to have a good GPA – which you might not think you care about when you first go, but it’s amazing how your priorities change as time goes on – you have to either lever yourself out of bed for that or not register for a class that early. Don’t count on your roommate either.

So what do you actually NEED to go to college? You know, besides a willingness to learn? Your room will come with some of the necessities like a table, chair, desk, and bed. What it won’t have is a hamper. There’s nothing like falling flat on your face because you got your foot stuck in some dirty laundry. And if you put your dirties in a hamper or laundry bag, it’s easy to find all the dirty stuff when you go back home to mom and ask her politely if she’ll wash it. Or if you live far from home and mom’s not an option, you won’t have to worry about leaving a trail of dirties on the floor on the way to the laundry room like you do at home.

One thing you might find difficult is the fact that if you live in the dorm, you can’t have pets. For some of us, pets are a necessity. The only pets I was allowed to have were fish. Now, I like to look at fish as much as the next person, but there’s something about being able to cuddle a fuzzy animal. Nobody will make fun of you if you bring a stuffed animal that looks like your cat or dog. Especially if it’s big enough to function as a pillow. If that’s still not enough, you could always volunteer at your local animal shelter to socialize (a.k.a. play with) the dogs and cats waiting for their furever homes. Plus, if your school is like mine was, they may require you to “volunteer” as part of your freshman year experience.

Another thing I found difficult when I moved into a dorm – for a completely different reason than not having my cat there – was managing my space. Mostly, my things ended up thrown all willy-nilly into the free space in my closet. I’d have really appreciated a basket or some totes. And don’t get me started on the shoe situation. I couldn’t reasonably have been expected to leave any at home, could I? Puh-leeze. What I would have wanted, had I thought about it, was one of those over the door shoe-hanger things. Talk about maximizing your space, and your amount of shoes! I could’ve increased my collection without increasing my closet pile.

Fortunately for me, I made it through my first year of college relatively unscathed. I may have put on the Freshman 15, but I didn’t fail all my classes. Somehow I made it through the mandatory 8 AM class for one credit that all first-year students had to take. I also managed to get all the stuff that I brought with me when I moved in and accumulated over the year and never used back home again. Rubbermaid came to my rescue yet again. It’s almost impossible to know what of all your stuff that you have at home is stuff that you’ll actually need when you go off to school. But in this day and age, you can purchase anything that you’ve forgotten on the internet and get it delivered right to you!

Posted: Tuesday, June 28, 2016