8 New Englander Winter Essentials

8 New Englander Winter Essentials

Surviving the cold the only way we know how.

Every New Englander knows what it takes to be prepared for the winter.

Being a native New Englander myself, I never really realized that what are relatively normal behaviors, habits, and even sayings here in Massachusetts aren't normal outside of New England. Personally, I think there is nothing wrong with using the word 'wicked' and even if you're not from New England you must recognize the fact that Tom Brady is in fact, an absolute god. Now going to Holy Cross I have seen a lot people struggle with the winters here and I thought I'd be kind and help everyone out.

So I've compiled a list of things you should either own or do if you want to survive through the winter. Chances are if you are from New England and are reading this article, you already own most of the items on the list. If you don't live in New England but go to school here, I suggest you start stalking up on these items in order to properly endure the winter...the New Englander way.

Because winter is here and we must be prepared.

1. An obnoxiously puffy jacket that goes to at least to the knee.

However, I personally suggest the obnoxious puffy jacket that goes below the knee. This will definitely keep you wicked warm in a blizzard.

2. A hat, but not just any hat.

A hat with an absurdly large pom-pom on the top of your head. Bonus points if the hat has a New England sports team (like the Patriots) on it and extra bonus points if it is super colorful.

3. Gloves that allow you to text because even when it is below freezing and there's a blizzard going on we have to be able to check Tom Brady's instagram.

4. A nice pair of Bean Boots.

These are perfect for trekking around in the snow and you get extra bonus points if they are fur-lined or colorful.

5. Multiple pairs of wool socks because even if your Bean Boots are fur-lined your toes will still freeze without the thickness of a quality pair of wool socks.

6. A Dunkin Donuts iced coffee.

Because you wouldn't be a proper New Englander without an iced coffee from Dunkin Donuts...even in the freezing cold weather.

7. A Hot Cup to go around your Dunkin Donuts iced coffee.

Because if you do now own the gloves that were suggested, then we don't want your hand to fall off as you're trying to hurry back into a building to go check Tom Brady's Instagram. Bonus points if you own one of the reusable Dunkin Donuts iced coffee cup sleeves.

8. Don't not accomplish anything even if there is a blizzard because New Englanders NEVER let a little snow get in their way of doing what needs.

If you were supposed to go for a bike ride, put your shorts on and your sneakers, grab your bike, and your puffy jacket and hit the road.

Cover Image Credit: Emma Berry

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A Letter To My Go-To Aunt

Happiness is having the best aunt in the world.

I know I don't say it enough, so let me start off by saying thank you.

You'll never understand how incredibly blessed I am to have you in my life. You'll also never understand how special you are to me and how much I love you.

I can't thank you enough for countless days and nights at your house venting, and never being too busy when I need you. Thank you for the shopping days and always helping me find the best deals on the cutest clothes. For all the appointments I didn't want to go to by myself. Thank you for making two prom days and a graduation party days I could never forget. Thank you for being overprotective when it comes to the men in my life.

Most importantly, thank you for being my support system throughout the numerous highs and lows my life has brought me. Thank you for being honest even when it isn't what I want to hear. Thank you for always keeping my feet on the ground and keeping me sane when I feel like freaking out. Thank you for always supporting whatever dream I choose to chase that day. Thank you for being a second mom. Thank you for bringing me into your family and treating me like one of your own, for making me feel special because you do not have an obligation to spend time with me.

You've been my hero and role model from the time you came into my life. You don't know how to say no when family comes to you for help. You're understanding, kind, fun, full of life and you have the biggest heart. However, you're honest and strong and sometimes a little intimidating. No matter what will always have a special place in my heart.

There is no possible way to ever thank you for every thing you have done for me and will continue to do for me. Thank you for being you.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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Keep Your Wellbeing On Track This Summer With These 5 Health Hacks

Don't waste your time off, use it!


Summertime is here, and for many of us, these three months of vacation mean more room for slacking off with our usual health routines. Between sleeping in through the morning gym alarm, and consuming too many tempting party foods and drinks, it is easy to fall into a euphoria of laziness and lose health as a top priority.

Here's the good news — believe it or not, summer is actually the easiest time of the year to get and stay in killer shape because of all of the extra time you have!

Here are some tips and tricks to get you started.

1. Try using the five-to-two rule.

It's easy to forget the difference between weekdays and weekends during summer when every day feels the same. But sometimes it is actually helpful to be aware of what day of the week it is. Just like you would do in school, try to stay on track during weekdays. Wake up at a reasonable time, exercise, find ways to be productive throughout the day, and be conscious of eating healthy. This way when the weekend rolls around, if you choose to indulge in sleeping in, or going out and having a few extra drinks, it's more acceptable than choosing to do so every single night. You will feel more in control, and trust me, your body will thank you for the moderation.

2. Skip the junk food and embrace the fresh seasonal produce.

Summer is the season where all of the nutrient-dense fruits and veggies are in their prime season. Take advantage of this! Skip the fast food, and try cooking since you now cannot use the excuse that you don't have time! Go to the grocery to stock up on fresh produce. There is nothing better than homemade, healthy food, and with so much time on your hands why not try some fun new recipes? Cooking is actually really enjoyable and rewarding. Here are some of my favorite healthy summertime recipes that keep my body feeling fresh and energized.

Healthy green smoothie

Quinoa Salad

Chia Pudding

Salmon and Apple Kale Salad

3. If you're tired of the gym, try alternative forms of exercise. 

Whether it is hiking, kayaking, swimming, or playing a family game of kickball, summer presents you with many more fun active opportunities than the colder, rainier months of the year. Take advantage of that if you are getting bored or unmotivated sitting in a stuffy gym.

4. Build a new routine.

During the school year, we all fall into a fairly consistent routine. We have classes at the same time every week, we have responsibilities, deadlines, and all of those other things that may seem pesky but actually, serve in giving our lives some major structure. For many of us, that structure is much needed. When summer arrives and suddenly we don't have those obligations calling us to get up and be productive, we fall into a slump of doing nothing. That's when it is helpful to set a new routine. Our bodies like routine and regularity and the best part about a summer routine is that you set it how you like it.

How do I build a new routine? Decide on a general bed and wake up time, at least for weekdays. Choose which days of the week you will exercise and stick to them! Plan out your week at the beginning of the week. I like to keep a weekly calendar. Before the week begins I write down all of the things I would like to get done that week and place them on the days I plan to do them. You can even write down your plans with friends or social events.

5.. In general, spend time outside.

Did you know that spending time in the sunshine and fresh air actually has an impact on your health? Nature can boost our moods, make us feel more energized and productive. And everyone knows that a healthy mindset leads to a healthier life. The great thing about summer is that we have endless opportunities to be outside because of the close weather. You can really take almost any activity you want and move it outside. Even as I sit here writing this blog I am sitting outside on our beautiful porch looking out over a lake.

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