How To Enjoy Your Summer Before Freshman Year Of College

How To Enjoy Your Summer Before Freshman Year Of College

Make It Count.
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Congratulations! You have officially made it through high school! Whether it was the best or worst four years of life, it is all over now. This is your last summer at home, so you have to make it last. But, how do you experience a lifetime of events in just a few short weeks? Well, hopefully some of these tips help you to enjoy this special summer before you go off to college.

Do not get caught up in drama.

There is always going to be drama, but high school is over. You are all moving into a new chapter. No need to dwell on silly little things that won't matter in a few months. You should be enjoying your summer with everyone that you care about.

Work, work, work!

Although you want to party all day in the summer and go to the beach, I am telling you that you should definitely work as much as you can. I totally underestimated the amount of money you spend in college. You don't want to be the broke college kid first semester because you didn't work over the summer and now you can't do anything fun at school. Those extra hours will be worth it.

Accept the truth.

The day you graduate, you will immediately realize who you're going to be staying in contact with. It is natural to fall off the grid with some people, so do not take it personally. Enjoy your summer with the people you care most about and who will reach out to you as well.

Spend time with your family.

As much as you are probably itching to get away from them, don't forget about them this summer. They deserve some of your attention as well. Go get some ice cream with them or just enjoy a family dinner. Whatever you decide to do, remember that you won't be able to do this with them in a few weeks.

Make a list of your favorite spots and be sure to visit them.

Go to your bagel shop for the last time and get your favorite sandwich. Go to the park and play soccer with your friends. Whatever things you cherish in your town, visit them for the last time, for you will surely miss all of these things. I know I made quite a few trips to my favorite restaurants before I left, and I really could go for a nice slice of pizza right now.

Start packing for college ASAP.

Packing for college is no joke. It is not something you can do the night before. Make a list of things you use in your daily life and add to it every day. Take note of what clothes you wear most often, for those are the ones you will be bringing with you. Pack a little each day so you are not doing it for the full 24 hours before you leave for school.

Have fun!

Enjoy this little time where you don't have any responsibilities or duties. It is your last chance to hang out with all of your friends and enjoy your home town before you pack up and leave. College is a great place, but don't forget to live in the moment and enjoy what you have. Because before you know it, you'll be sitting in a dorm, wishing for the summer before freshman year back.

Cover Image Credit: The Voice

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A Letter To My Freshman Dorm Room As I Pack Up My Things

Somehow a 15' x 12' room became a home.

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Dear Geary 411,

With your creaky beds, concrete walls, and mismatched tile floors, you are easily overlooked as just another room we were randomly assigned to— but you were different. Inside your old walls, I have made some of the best memories of my life that I will hold on to forever.

Thank you for welcoming my neighbors in with open arms who quickly became friends who didn't knock and walked in like you were their own.

I feel like an apology is needed.

We're sorry for blaring the music so loud while getting ready and acting like we can actually sing when, in reality, we know we can't. Sorry for the dance parties that got a bit out of control and ended with us standing on the desks. Sorry for the cases of the late-night giggles that came out of nowhere and just would not go away. Sorry for the homesick cries and the "I failed my test" cries and the "I'm dropping out" cries. We're sorry for hating you at first. All we saw was a tiny and insanely hot room, we had no idea what you would bring to us.

Thank you for providing me with memories of my first college friends and college experiences.

As I stand at the door looking at the bare room that I first walked into nine months ago I see so much more than just a room. I see lots and lots of dinners being eaten at the desks filled with stories of our days. I see three girls sitting on the floor laughing at God knows what. I see late night ice cream runs and dance battles. I see long nights of homework and much-needed naps. Most importantly, I look at the bed and see a girl who sat and watched her parents leave in August and was absolutely terrified, and as I lock you up for the last time today, I am so proud of who that terrified girl is now and how much she has grown.

Thank you for being a space where I could grow, where I was tested physically, mentally and emotionally and for being my home for a year.

Sincerely,

A girl who is sad to go

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When Was The Last Time You Were Alive?

If you can't post it for everyone to see, was it truly a remarkable moment?

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Being alive is an essentially effortless act.

In theory, as long as you're eating food, drinking water, and performing as a human, assuming no major health conditions, most of us are living.

The tragedy I see most often is so very few of us are alive.

Now, I'm not suggesting you drop your textbooks and sprint up a mountain, or go broke trying to find yourself in new activities and events.

That's the illusion pressed onto so many of us. Social Media, more importantly, FOMO, has taught us that in order to truly be alive we need to make sure we travel far and wide, eat gourmet and unique food, and essentially, immerse ourselves in something phenomenal. However, regardless of what you do- don't do it without an audience and the value of your experience will only be justified by the number of likes you accrue on your #bestvacation ever because you #lovenature. With your back to the camera and wispy hair flowing in the beach air, you hit all of your angles, how else will you prove that you're alive to Instagram?

I fell for this too. I spent so much of my life constantly trying to get to the next phase life had to offer. High school was fun, but I was counting the days until graduation. Growing up in a small hometown wasn't awful, but I had sticky note calendars until my next vacation. And day in and day out, events would happen all around me that were just too "normal." I wasn't alive, but I was living.

Setting your soul on fire and truly living is so much more difficult than you could ever expect, but not because you have to drain savings and take along a buddy to snap all the perfect moments.

Choosing to be alive is realizing how important it is to be in this moment or phase in life and accepting it for all its worth. Instead of racing to the finish line or trying to sprint into your next season of assumed happiness, take time to notice all the beautiful and small things that make this moment so important. There is so much life to be found in simple moments.

Semesters are ending, we are all racing to summer. Perhaps in the process, take note of the routine cafeteria worker that constantly smiles at you and says hello. Or perhaps, giggle at the fact that in just a few short weeks that bus driver you see every single morning won't be apart of your morning routine.

The farther I get from what used to be my normal, the more I miss that season of life. I haven't lived in my hometown since I was eighteen, but I miss the simplicity that came with my drives to high school listening to Kanye West and the coziness of a small town opening its doors to start a new day. I never stopped to be alive in those moments, I was just simply living.

Wherever your next phase of life might be, it will always be there. You will always have something else coming. However, once this moment is gone. It's truly gone. Don't waste beautiful views trying to capture just the right picture for Instagram, take in the moment.

Living and experiencing life can be as simple as trusting that you're exactly where you need to be in life. Cherish each moment as you're in it. The next moment is coming whether you're ready or not.

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