These Are the Best Ways to Enjoy Fall on Your Thanksgiving Break

These Are the Best Ways to Enjoy Fall on Your Thanksgiving Break

Thanksgiving is Just Around the Corner
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You’re dying for some home cooking, and your hair needs a decent trim. Even though you’re so tired you could probably sleep straight through break, you’ve missed hanging out with hometown friends and that other thing you used to have — free time.

Don’t worry — we’ve compiled several restorative, invigorating and genuinely decadent ways to enjoy the season that are perfect for rebooting your energy levels and indulging in well-deserved downtime.

Build a Bonfire

Anywhere will do: the beach, a state park — even a spacious backyard. Enlist the help of friends to gather wood, and don’t forget to accommodate plenty of seating. Bonfires have a way of attracting folks!

If it’s a clear night, consider stargazing. Nightly sky forecasts help guide observations to reveal the most easily spotted constellations, as well as those of startling seasonal beauty.

Carve Pumpkins

Bring back a little piece of childhood by planning a pumpkin carve-off with family members. Up the ante — now that research is your middle name — by checking out pumpkin stencil templates.

Missing some distant family members? Proclaim them virtual judges and send your “entries” through social sharing mediums like Google Drive or Dropbox. They’ll get a real kick out of all your creations and the opportunity to share the spirit of the season with you.

Don’t forget to save the pumpkin seeds. Roasting them in a little olive oil with salt makes a great companion to traditional seasonal sweets.

Go Apple Picking

Fresh air, sunshine and mouthwatering apples — nothing signals the harvest quite like orchard hay rides and bulging bags of just-picked fruit. Consider purchase of farm-made jarred products like apple butter and jam. They make excellent dorm room snacks with crackers or bread.

Cozy Up With a Movie

When the weather turns grey, cozy up with some at-home film classics, warm blankets and hot chocolate. Did you know you can make hot chocolate with peanut butter, or dark chocolate and orange zest? Go ahead, extend your comfort zone and start a new cocoa trend.

Got some friends who want in? Build a hot chocolate bar and allow guests to create their own unique concoctions.

Watch a Parade

A Thanksgiving Day parade, of course. If your town or local district doesn’t have one, there’s always the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on NBC. A Thanksgiving tradition since 1924 and chock-full of classic entertainment, the famous New York City event garners more than 50 million viewers every year.

Glam it up with some pre-turkey brunch to hold off hunger while dinner cooks. Consider grabbing takeout, since your kitchen will likely be jammed — most coffee and breakfast places are open before noon during the holiday.

Start a Pick-Up Game

Raid childhood closets and perhaps the garage for a football, frisbee, tug-of-war rope or just a few bright orange cones. You only need a couple of players for touch football or frisbee. But if you’ve got a good-sized game crew, organize a few rounds of tug-of-war and an impromptu obstacle course.

Chances are, you’ll find yourself laughing too hard to compete seriously, and sweating even in temperatures cold enough to see your breath.

Bake Seasonal Goods

What to do with all those fresh apples? Indulge in the comfort of home baking. So what if you’ve never made pie crust or used an electric mixer? With a few basic ingredients and a little patience, you can turn out seasonal breads and cookies to rival the pros.

The next best thing to apple pie and a much healthier option is apple crumb. Other than white sugar, brown sugar, flour and butter, the only slightly out-of-the-box ingredients required are rolled oats, cinnamon and your delicious orchard bounty. Apple crumb is oven-ready in just 20 minutes. It bakes for under an hour, making it as time-efficient as it is delicious.

Of course, anything with pumpkin is an ideal go-to this season. And it’s not such a deep secret that chefs all over the world use canned pumpkin puree in both sweet and savory recipes. There’s no need to destroy your carved masterpiece for a recipe!

Consider doubling simple pumpkin bread batches and freeze extra loaves for travel back to college. Don’t have a loaf pan? Make muffins and share the bounty with neighbors or your local fire and police department.

Starting to like this sharing thing? Use the same ingredients you gathered for apple crisp, plus milk, vanilla, egg and nutmeg, and turn out cookies perfect for plating and delivering. Feel free to add a personal twist by including chocolate chips, raisins, dried cranberry or walnuts. Clearly mark the cookies that contain nuts as a precaution for those with nut allergies.

Tailgate

Do most of your childhood holiday memories include a not-so-faint football game soundtrack playing in the background, complete with penalty whistles and cheering? Keep the memory alive by putting together a tailgate party and embracing the football vibe.

If your local high school team is still playing, chances are they’ve made it to the playoffs. Thanksgiving weekend also hosts several classic college rivalry games — and then there’s the NFL. Throw some beach chairs, packed coolers and maybe a portable grill in the back. Make sure you’ve charged all your devices so you can play plenty of party-in-the-parking-lot tunes.

Can’t score tickets? Get creative and consider tailgating around an outdoor TV, or even in the driveway with the game on inside. Tailgating is a frame of mind, and it’s OK to bend the rules to fit your situation.

Take a Hike

Fall foliage is peak this time of year. Take the opportunity to view it in all its glory on a mind-clearing hike. Tranquil walks in the great outdoors offer a feeling of being quite small in a big world. Chronic worries begin to seem less significant, and your mind relaxes as your body works.

Fall break is an ideal time to slow down, have fun and connect with others far from the urgency of assigned papers and exams, even if it’s just for a little while. And, after all — winter break is right around the corner!

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7 Things You Do If You’re One Of Those 'I Always Order Chicken Tenders' People

It's hard to love food but also hate it at the same time.

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Growing up, my mom would usually have to cook me a separate dinner from my siblings. Why? Because I was ridiculously picky and wouldn't eat the same foods as everyone else. Trust me, it gets old. It's not my fault certain things just taste gross, you learn to live with it.

1. You eat something you hate just to see if you still hate it

I'll take a bite of a burger every once in a while just to reaffirm that it still tastes like dirt. I just have to know. Don't even get me started on vegetables.

2. When trying to explain what you actually like to eat, people give you major side eye

Don't ask me about my eating habits unless you want to get into a long, confusing conversation.

3. Eating at someone else’s house when you were younger was a pain

You hate to tell their parents just how much you hate the food that they gave you. So, you sucked it up and ate it anyway only to come home and whine to your parents.

4. There’s one thing on any menu you always fall back on...even if it’s on the kids menu

Pizza, maybe. Chicken tenders, always.

5. Trying a new food is a very proud moment

It's like, wow! Look at me being all adventurous.

6. When you realize you actually like some new food, that’s an even more amazing moment

Crazy times. This rarely happens.

7. Sometimes it’s the texture, sometimes it’s the flavor, all the time it’s left on your plate

Oops. At restaurants it's either left on your plate or your order is very specified.

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It's 2019, And I Still Use A Weekly Planner

There is something about physically writing things down for that makes it easier to remember dates and deadlines.

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Even with all the technology that is available to us nowadays, I still use an old-fashioned planner. I keep it in my backpack and you will see me pull it out if I need to add events for that week. Usually I will review the syllabus for my classes at the start of each semester and put down the important test dates or dates for other assignments. By doing this, I get a visual outline of what each will look like and what weeks will be extra heavy with school and other clubs that I am involved in on campus. Even though having this is a nice tool to help plan ahead and budget my time, it is by no means a failsafe. Sometimes I get this feeling that I forgot to do something that day but can't think of what it is. When this happens, I can refer back to my planner and look to see if I missed anything. The key point is to not forget to write things down, otherwise, all will be lost.

With today's technology, iPhones can do pretty much anything, I am aware that there is google calendar which can be synced up with a MacBook as well. This doesn't work for me because it takes too long to enter the events in my phone and I have not grown used to it. Another point is that I don't have a MacBook so it would only be accessible from my phone. I have found that it is just quicker to jot an event down by hand in my planner. For some people this might seem like a hassle having to pull out their planner when wanting to write down something they need to accomplish for that day. Since people spend a lot of time being on their laptops or phones it would be more convenient for them, being that they know how to work the app.

Either way, keeping a daily schedule or planner has many benefits. As mentioned before, it can help reduce the possibility of forgetting important due dates for exams or projects and other deadlines. Writing things down can also help reduce stress. There are times where there is too much on our plate to handle at once, we might have the feeling that everything needs to get done, which can be overwhelming. When I put things down on paper, it doesn't seem as bad and I can take care of what needs to be done at the moment and then work from there. I feel great after checking off a couple things from my to-do list because I can see that progress is being made.

Another use is to build in some time to relax or just time for yourself into your daily or weekly schedule, this can prevent the feeling of being burned out. Building in free time should have limits, especially for people who may spend too much time watching Netflix or Television. I would know because there are times where it can feel like hours go by and I haven't accomplished anything productive.

I highly recommend anyone who is in college to keep a planner, otherwise the stress can be too much to handle.

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