13 Areas To Spring-Clean For Summer

13 Areas To Spring-Clean For Summer

(That Don't Involve Actual Cleaning)
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As I prepare to spring into summer, I feel ready to shed all of the old habits and dead weight from this past school year. Although I cleaned and got rid of a lot as I moved out of my college apartment, it seems like I just simply moved a lot of my clutter and unnecessary belongings home. Now I feel like I see ‘clutter’ everywhere, in my closet, my computer, my phone… basically in every aspect of my life!

So if you are hoping for a fresh start for the warmer months, here is a list of ways to clear away the clutter:

1. Music

If you haven’t for a while, take the time to go through all of your song downloads. For my phone, I only keep the songs that I regularly listen to. I also edit my playlists to add new songs I like and take off old songs that I tend to skip now. Or maybe just make whole new playlists for summer!

2. Photos

Photos can take up a lot of space on your phone, so I suggest transferring your photos from your phone to your laptop or a memory stick. Delete random screenshots, pointless photos and unedited versions of edited pics. This can be a great opportunity to take a trip down memory lane while organizing your photos. Plus, you will have plenty of room to then take photos of your summer adventures!

3. Schoolwork

After a full school year, chances are you’ve built up a collection worth of school notes and assignments. I like to sort through my old papers to find those worth keeping and those worth pitching. While you can recycle your papers, you could make it an event and kickstart your summer with a bonfire with your friends to burn all of your old papers.

4. Knick-Knacks & Keepsakes

Just like with school work, chances are you’ve built up a collection worth of knick-knacks and keepsakes documenting your school year. I like to sort through these to find those that still bring good memories and are worth keeping. Rather than keep them stored in the back of your drawer, consider getting or making your own memory box that can hold the keepsakes along with any photos you may have.

5. Your Watchlist

Whether on Netflix or Hulu, we all tend to create watchlists with our fave shows and those we think we will like. I suggest evaluating what shows you want to keep on your watchlist and those you are ready to let go. This is a great opportunity to also think of what shows you may want to watch this summer!

6. Social Media

If you’re like me, your tastes and passions are constantly changing and so is your Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter and Facebook feeds. If your feed seems to be ever-growing, go through the lists of who you follow on social media & unfollow all the accounts or pages that you no longer care about.

7. Apps

If your phone is full of page upon page of apps, I would suggest deleting all of those that you don’t use. Also, see if you can organize the apps you want to keep to make it easier to find and use them. Consider modifying the notifications settings for the apps you keep to avoid the annoyance of all those notifications to keep from being sucked into your phone.

8. Computer Folders

Just like your phone apps, consider going through your computer to sort through all of the files you have saved. Dump all essays and memes you’ll never use again. For the documents you plan on keeping, be sure to clearly label them and organize them into folders so you can easily find everything.

9. E-mails

After a full school year, chances are that you’ve also got an inbox full of emails. I like to sort through my emails to find those that are still important and worth keeping from those that are spam or just plain old. I even create different labels to help sort my emails, because if I know where it is then I am more likely to use it as a reference or respond to the email.

10. T-shirts

For my anthropology class, my professor asked us to count up how many t-shirts we had and I was surprised to find that I had more than 50! Since I don’t wear all of them, I like to go through all of my t-shirts to sort out those that I regularly wear from those that I shove to the back of my closet, especially those that are smaller or from my high school days. While you can donate those you don’t wear, if you don’t want to part with your t-shirts you could make them into a t-shirt blanket.

11. Your Fave, Everday Bag

After a full school year, chances are that your fave, everyday bag is pretty full and possibly messy. Throw out any garbage and empty your purse of crumbs and spare change. As you get ready for summer, consider what you will need to have on hand for summer (sunscreen, chapstick, sunglasses) and will no longer need from school. If you’re lucky, your bag will seem like new and will become lighter.

12. Contact List

Going through your contact list is a great way to see who you are still in contact with and who you have lost contact with. I suggest getting rid of those whom you don’t regularly communicate with. This is also a great opportunity to organize the contacts you are going to keep. My favorite is putting descriptions that tell you how or where you know someone from in the ‘company’ slot, such as Tina from “work” or Alex from “English.”

13. Friends

Going along with the contact list, the end of the school year is also a great time to evaluate who you consider your friends. Life is short, so I don’t have time for those who don’t invest in me or just create drama in my life. It’s important to especially cut toxic people out of your life. A gentle reminder: letting go of toxic people is an act of self-care & self-preservation. Don’t feel guilty about keeping in contact with people who only cause you pain & distress. So as you begin your summer, think of it as an opportunity to make new friends and invest in the relationships that you want to keep.

May you start this summer with a clean slate with room for all of the new people and experiences in your life!

Cover Image Credit: https://www.pexels.com/photo/pile-of-covered-books-159751/

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9 Reasons Crocs Are The Only Shoes You Need

Crocs have holes so your swag can breathe.
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Do you have fond childhood objects that make you nostalgic just thinking about your favorite Barbie or sequenced purse? Well for me, its my navy Crocs. Those shoes put me through elementary school. I eventually wore them out so much that I had to say goodbye. I tried Airwalks and sandals, but nothing compared. Then on my senior trip in New York City, a four story Crocs store gleamed at me from across the street and I bought another pair of Navy Blue Crocs. The rest is history. I wear them every morning to the lake for practice and then throughout the day to help air out my soaking feet. I love my Crocs so much, that I was in shock when it became apparent to me that people don't feel the same. Here are nine reasons why you should just throw out all of your other shoes and settle on Crocs.

1. They are waterproof.

These bad boys can take on the wettest of water. Nobody is sure what they are made of, though. The debate is still out there on foam vs. rubber. You can wear these bad boys any place water may or may not be: to the lake for practice or to the club where all the thirsty boys are. But honestly who cares because they're buoyant and water proof. Raise the roof.


2. Your most reliable support system

There is a reason nurses and swimming instructors alike swear by Crocs. Comfort. Croc's clogs will make you feel like your are walking on a cloud of Laffy Taffy. They are wide enough that your toes are not squished, and the rubbery material forms perfectly around your foot. Added bonus: The holes let in a nice breeze while riding around on your Razor Scooter.

3. Insane durability

Have you ever been so angry you could throw a Croc 'cause same? Have you ever had a Croc bitten while wrestling a great white shark? Me too. Have you ever had your entire foot rolled like a fruit roll up but had your Crocs still intact? Also me. All I know is that Seal Team 6 may or may not have worn these shoes to find and kill Osama Bin Laden. Just sayin'.


4. Bling, bling, bling

Jibbitz, am I right?! These are basically they're own money in the industry of comfortable footwear. From Spongebob to Christmas to your favorite fossil, Jibbitz has it all. There's nothing more swag-tastic than pimped out crocs. Lady. Killer.

5. So many options

From the classic clog to fashionable sneakers, Crocs offer so many options that are just too good to pass up on. They have fur lined boots, wedges, sandals, loafers, Maryjane's, glow in the dark, Minion themed, and best of all, CAMO! Where did your feet go?!

6. Affordable

Crocs: $30

Feeling like a boss: Priceless

7. Two words: Adventure Straps

Because you know that when you move the strap from casual mode chillin' in the front to behind the heal, it's like using a shell on Mario Cart.

8. Crocs cares

Okay, but for real, Crocs is a great company because they have donated over 3 million pairs of crocs to people in need around the world. Move over Toms, the Croc is in the house.

9. Stylish AF

The boys will be coming for you like Steve Irwin.

Who cares what the haters say, right? Wear with pride, and go forth in style.

Cover Image Credit: Chicago Tribune

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From One Nerd To Another

My contemplation of the complexities between different forms of art.

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Aside from reading Guy Harrison's guide to eliminating scientific ignorance called, "At Least Know This: Essential Science to Enhance Your Life" and, "The Breakthrough: Immunotherapy and the Race to Cure Cancer" by Charles Graeber, an informative and emotional historical account explaining the potential use of our own immune systems to cure cancer, I read articles and worked on my own writing in order to keep learning while enjoying my winter break back in December. I also took a trip to the Guggenheim Museum.


I wish I was artistic. Generally, I walk through museums in awe of what artists can do. The colors and dainty details simultaneously inspire me and remind me of what little talent I posses holding a paintbrush. Walking through the Guggenheim was no exception. Most of the pieces are done by Hilma af Klint, a 20th-century Swedish artist expressing her beliefs and curiosity about the universe through her abstract painting. I was mostly at the exhibit to appease my mom (a K - 8th-grade art teacher), but as we continued to look at each piece and read their descriptions, I slowly began to appreciate them and their underlying meanings.


I like writing that integrates symbols, double meanings, and metaphors into its message because I think that the best works of art are the ones that have to be sought after. If the writer simply tells you exactly what they were thinking and how their words should be interpreted, there's no room for imagination. An unpopular opinion in high school was that reading "The Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne was fun. Well, I thought it was. At the beginning of the book, there's a scene where Hawthorne describes a wild rosebush that sits just outside of the community prison. As you read, you are free to decide whether it's an image of morality, the last taste of freedom and natural beauty for criminals walking toward their doom, or a symbol of the relationship between the Puritans with their prison-like expectations and Hester, the main character, who blossoms into herself throughout the novel. Whichever one you think it is doesn't matter, the point is that the rosebush can symbolize whatever you want it to. It's the same with paintings - they can be interpreted however you want them to be.


As we walked through the building, its spiral design leading us further and further upwards, we were able to catch glimpses of af Klint's life through the strokes of her brush. My favorite of her collections was one titled, "Evolution." As a science nerd myself, the idea that the story of our existence was being incorporated into art intrigued me. One piece represented the eras of geological time through her use of spirals and snails colored abstractly. She clued you into the story she was telling by using different colors and tones to represent different periods. It felt like reading "The Scarlet Letter" and my biology textbook at the same time. Maybe that sounds like the worst thing ever, but to me it was heaven. Art isn't just art and science isn't just science. Aspects of different studies coexist and join together to form something amazing that will speak to even the most untalented patron walking through the museum halls.

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