10 Dorm Room Items Freshmen Forget To Pack

10 Dorm Items Freshmen Either Pack Now Or Buy On Amazon Later

If you don't bring these, you'll be hitting up Amazon later.
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The college year is just weeks (or even days) away from starting up again, and for many students starting out as freshman, it's the first time being away from home and living on your own. Packing and trying to figure out what to bring can be a big challenge, and chances are you'll forget some things or at some point during the school year realize you really wish you had something and frantically buy in on Amazon. After my first year, here are some things that I recommend bringing that I either brought with me at move-in or had to pick-up at some point along the way.

1. Power Strip

You'll be lucky if your room has a couple of outlets, so it's a good idea to bring a power strip to plug in all your electronics. Check with your school's policy first to make sure what you bring abides by the fire safety rules.

2. Hand-held Vacuum

In my freshman year, I had carpet, so bringing a hand-held vacuum was so essential to cleaning up every week or whenever something spilled. It was easy to store away and depending on what type of flooring you'll have, it'll probably be a great option.

3. Rain Boots

Nothing is worse than walking across campus is the gross, rainy weather and soaking your shoes and having to deal with them all day. My rain boots were great throughout the year, and I definitely won't be starting the next school year without them.

4. Command Hooks/Strips

If you're planning on decorating your room at all, command hooks and strips are such a necessity. They're much better than double-sided tape and are easy to pull away at the end of the school year. My dorm room was covered with stuff and I had (almost) no issues.

5. Microwavable Bowl

Sometimes, you don't want to trek across campus to get something to eat, and you'd much rather just heat something up in your dorm. I always had some cans of soup or ravioli and having a microwavable bowl was really helpful and made it a lot easier to eat.

SEE ALSO: What Nobody Is Going To Tell You About Freshman Year

6. Lock Box

Whenever you have important documents (like your Social Security card or your birth certificate), expensive jewelry, or any other valuables, having a lock box that you can put under the bed or in a drawer is a nice thing to have and just have a sense of security with your personal items.

7. Mattress Pad

I hate to break it to you, but school-provided mattresses are not comfortable. It's a great idea to buy a mattress pad, which you can find great ones pretty cheap, to give you better nights of sleep and school and maybe give you more home-like comfort.

8. Mini Speaker

Whether you're listening in your room, the shower, the quad, or wherever you may find yourself, playing music is a must and a lot of the time your phone just isn't loud enough. Getting a mini Bluetooth speaker is a good buy and will definitely get a lot of good use.

9. First Aid Kit

While you don't need major medical supplies, having a small number of first aid supplies, like Band-Aids, Neosporin, or Advil, just when you get cut or have a headache. If you live far from home and don't want to go to the health center just for a headache, having some supplies is a good choice.

10. Scissors

This isn't something you might remember to bring, but I definitely got a ton of use from something basic: a pair of scissors. Whether you're opening all the dorm stuff you brought or needing to cut a few things here and there, having scissors was so helpful.

While you'll need a lot more than just these ten items, it's a good starting place and some things you might not bring otherwise.

Now, go off and enjoy your freshman year!

As an Amazon Associate, Odyssey may earn a portion of qualifying sales.

Cover Image Credit: Kayla Master

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3 Reasons Why Step Dads Are Super Dads

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I often hear a lot of people complaining about their step-parents and wondering why they think that they have any authority over them. Although I know that everyone has different situations, I will be the first to admit that I am beyond blessed to have a step dad. Yep, I said it. My life wouldn't be the same that it is not without him in it. Let me tell you why I think step dads are the greatest things since sliced bread.

1. They will do anything for you, literally.

My stepdad has done any and every thing for me. From when I was little until now. He was and still is my go-to. If I was hungry, he would get me food. If something was broken, he would fix it. If I wanted something, he would normally always find a way to get it. He didn't spoil me (just sometimes), but he would make sure that I was always taken care of.

SEE ALSO: The Thank You That Step-Parents Deserve

2. Life lessons.

Yup, the tough one. My stepdad has taught me things that I would have never figured out on my own. He has stood beside me through every mistake. He has been there to pick me up when I am down. My stepdad is like the book of knowledge: crazy hormonal teenage edition. Boy problems? He would probably make me feel better. He just always seemed to know what to say. I think that the most important lesson that I have learned from my stepdad is: to never give up. My stepdad has been through three cycles of leukemia. He is now in remission, yay!! But, I never heard him complain. I never heard him worry and I never saw him feeling sorry for himself. Through you, I found strength.

3. He loved me as his own.

The big one, the one that may seem impossible to some step parents. My stepdad is not actually my stepdad, but rather my dad. I will never have enough words to explain how grateful I am for this man, which is why I am attempting to write this right now. It takes a special kind of human to love another as if they are their own. There had never been times where I didn't think that my dad wouldn't be there for me. It was like I always knew he would be. He introduces me as his daughter, and he is my dad. I wouldn't have it any other way. You were able to show me what family is.

So, dad... thanks. Thanks for being you. Thanks for being awesome. Thanks for being strong. Thanks for loving me. Thanks for loving my mom. Thanks for giving me a wonderful little sister. Thanks for being someone that I can count on. Thanks for being my dad.

I love you!

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Teaching Is An Amazing Career, It's More Powerful Than We Give It Credit For

Teaching is a career that is heavily overlooked — it is much more powerful than people realize.

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When it comes to teaching, it's not always easy or fun. But, let me ask you this: what career really is easy or fun all the time? Being challenged can beneficial. Otherwise, you are just going through the same routine over and over. Teaching will definitely keep you on your toes because there's always something happening.

People seem to think teachers just lecture on information that they hope their students remember for the test. You know what? Those people are dead wrong. Teaching is more than that. Teaching means having the passion and drive to educate children. Teaching is turning something dull to something that students will find more interesting and enjoyable.

Teaching is also about providing tools and other resources for students in order for them to succeed, especially the ones who tend to struggle in school. Being able to give those tools to help them accomplish their goals is extremely rewarding. A teacher will work with a student who is behind on his/her reading skills to have him/her be right at the level he/she needs to be by the end of the school year. Not many jobs provide a reward quite like guiding a student, if not more, to success.

Although it focuses on academics, teaching is not just about that. Sure, being an effective teacher is key, but there are other aspects that are just as significant. As a teacher, you also have to connect with your students. Knowing your students on a personal level is so important. The connection can build respect that will, in turn, help them to succeed. Plus, students spend more time with you on a day-to-day basis than they do with their parents — isn't that frightening? So, you have to be able to support them and let them know them that you are there for them if they are having trouble.

Additionally, that connection you build with your students can last a lifetime. You can witness the growth of a student right in front of you. In fact, I am still very close with some of my teachers from elementary school. Many of them inspired me to become a teacher. Because of those great bonds I built, I had the opportunity to intern with some of my past teachers, which was a rewarding experience for everyone. Being able to develop such a connection with someone so different in age is something that is so powerful and that doesn't come with many other careers.

Teaching is so amazing. There are so many layers and beautiful aspects to it. Again, it can be difficult, but it's also a lot of fun. Not many people can say they have fun and laugh every day at work. I also truly believe that not many other people can say their careers provide as rewarding of a feeling as teaching does. To be able to make such a difference in someone's life is an incredible thing. Teaching is my passion. I know teaching will not be only gratifying but something that will bring me pure joy.

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