Prom timeline

The Ultimate Timeline To All Things Prom

Prom is in April...the shopping starts in January...may the planning begin!

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Alright, seniors, sure, it's January and the new year literally just started, but I can bet that all of your thoughts right now are centered towards April—prom. When I was in your shoes one short year ago, I was surprised by all the planning that occurred months before the big day, and while I was going through it all, I created a "prom timeline" that not only helped my friends and I stay organized but hopefully can help all of you too. Happy planning!

January: Dress shopping!

Personally, this was one of my favorite parts of the whole prom experience, because, simply put, the dress is the most important part. One Saturday in January, my friends, their moms, and I went to dress shops all over the area and tried on what seemed like hundreds of dresses. It's best to do this early because a lot of stores have a "one dress, one school" policy where they can only sell a dress to one person that goes to the certain school, that way there are no repeats... from that store at least. PRO TIP: 12/10 recommend pockets—you ladies know how fantastic they are.

Mid-February: Date hunting begins

Ross

If you already have a boyfriend, obviously you don't have to worry about this part because you two will already have the "tie matching the dress" thing down, but for others, "finding" a date is important so you don't have to rush through important things like color-matching or corsage-buying. Of course, it is fun to just go with your group of gal pals too—date or no date!

End of February or early March: Prom house shopping

A lot of groups will go away with to a lake house—or a "prom house"—for the weekend after prom, but you have to book fast so the best and biggest houses aren't taken! Being from the Chicago suburbs, most people will rent houses a few hours away in Wisconsin or Michigan. Don't forget to plan out who is bringing what food, games, movies, etc.

End of March: Order t-shirts

This is not a mandatory thing, but at my school, each friend group would order t-shirts or "bro tanks" with a quote or expression on it and then wear it the day before prom to school and during prom weekend with everyone at their house.

End of March or early April: Make appointments

Ladies: hair and makeup appointments are a must—unless you're lucky and can pull it off on your own or have a talented friend. Make appointments at a hair salon or makeup store like Sephora fast before the good time slots fill up! Don't forget about mani-pedis too!

Early April: The little things

Go to your local florist to pick out the flowers you want in your corsage or bouquet so they match your dress and the tux—they'll also add some flair to your photos! Organize where your group will be taking pictures beforehand and create a plan B in case of rain. And if you want a professional photographer, you will also want to line that up ASAP.

Mid-April: The cute "promposals" begin

I'm not sure why we figure out dates months in advance but wait till now to do the whole "asking" thing with a poster or decorated house, but it's just something that happens.

Day of prom: Go time!

You did it, you made it to the day that you have been "planning" since you were 10 watching "High School Musical" (but actually planning for real the past four months)! Wake up early, wash your face, start getting your hair and makeup done, get on your dress and head to photos! Before you know it the dance will be happening and you'll be loving every moment.

Through all of the drama that prom may entail, it will all be worth it in the end. There will be times when your group can't decide on little things, or the group chat will be shooting messages back and forth at the speed of light, but years from now you won't remember that stuff, you will only remember the good times had with you and your best friends.

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A Thank You Letter To The Best Teammate I've Ever Had

There's no "I" in team.
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We all have those amazing memories when it comes to sports. Sometimes it is from winning tough games, but most of the amazing memories that we have come from the teammates that we shared those wins with. Teammates are the people who you spend so much time with that you eventually become a family. Teammates do more than help just win a game; they can be there through everything. There's always that one teammate that stands out from the rest, and this letter is for you.

Thank you for being selfless.

Looking back, I remember a lot of teammates. Some were great and some were not that great. I've had teammates who have only cared about their playing time. I've had teammates that have only cared about if they score more goals or more points than anyone else. You did not care about that. If the coach told you to play a position that you did not want to play, you still played it without a complaint. If I was tired at a certain position and wanted to switch you, you did it. You never complained about where you were playing or how many goals you had; you just wanted the team to win.

Thank you for having my back.

The best kinds of teammates are the ones that support you no matter what you do. I got a red card? That referee is stupid. I got into a fist fight during a game? You were the first one next to me swinging. Some girl makes fun of me on social media for messing up in a game? You were roasting her in her mentions. Even if I was right or wrong, you always supported me no matter what I did.

Thank you for seeing me at my worst and building me back up.

There are always times in an athlete's life where we run to the point to where we need to throw up. There are times where we go through games and miss too many shots. There are times where we get a little too mad at our coaches and feel as if we cannot deal with it anymore. You were the one that got me through it. When I was in the middle of a run and my lungs were burning, you stayed right next to me and reminded me that there wasn't much longer to go, even if there was. You always reminded me how capable I was by yelling at me and telling me to go score. You've seen me tired, sweaty, crying, screaming and throwing up. After all that, you still went out of your way to build me back up and I cannot thank you enough for that.

Thank you for making me love the game.

Without people like you, I would have had a very rough ride through my sports career. I have had teammates that have made me go home crying because they were so mean and rude. I have had teammates who have only cared about themselves. Without you, I would've forgotten what a good teammate is. Looking back, all I remember is the celebrations, the screaming random songs in cars and us hating each other's exes automatically... Then talking about all these things at practice. Thanks for being a leader with me. Without you and the rest of the team, I would not have loved the sport that I played.

Cover Image Credit: Cheap Seats Photography

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I'm Not The Person I Was In High School And I'm Not Sorry I Changed

I'm sorry, the old me can't come to the phone right now.

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If those who knew me in high school hung out with me now, they probably wouldn't recognize me. If my friends from college hung out with me around two years ago, they probably wouldn't recognize me. It's safe to say I've changed... a lot. I definitely find the change to be for the better and I couldn't be happier with the person I've become.

In high school, I would sit at home every night anxiously waiting to leave and go out. Now, honestly, going out is the last thing I want to do any night of the week. While everyone in college is at a fraternity party or at the bars, I prefer to sit at home on the couch, watching Netflix with my boyfriend. That's an ideal night for me and it is exactly the opposite of what I wanted to do a couple of years ago. There's nothing wrong with going out and partying, it's just not what I want to do anymore.

I craved attention in high school. I went to the parties and outings so I could be in Snapchats and photos, just so people would know I was there. I hung out with certain groups of people just so I could say I was "friends" with so-and-so who was so very popular. I wanted to be known and I wanted to be cool.

Now, I couldn't care less. I go to the bars or the parties if I really feel like it or if my friends make me feel bad enough for never going anywhere that I finally decide to show up. It's just not my scene anymore and I no longer worry about missing out.

If you could look back at me during my junior year of high school, you probably would've found me searching for the best-ranked party schools and colleges with the best nearby clubs or bars. Now, you can find me eating snacks on the couch on a Friday night watching the parties through other peoples' Snapchats.

Some may say that I'm boring now, and while I agree that my life is a little less adventurous now than it was in high school, I don't regret the lifestyle changes I've made. I feel happier, I feel like a better person, I feel much more complete. I'm not sorry that I've changed since high school and I'm not sorry that I'm not living the typical "college lifestyle." I don't see anything wrong with that life, it's just not what makes me happy and it's not what I want to do anymore.

I've become a different person since high school and I couldn't be happier about it. I have a lot that's contributed to the change, but my boyfriend definitely was the main factor as he showed me that staying in can be a million times better than a night out. My interests and my social cravings have completely transitioned into that of an 80-year-old grandma, but I don't regret it.

Change doesn't have to be a bad thing. In fact, it can bring a lot more happiness and comfort. The transition from high school to college is drastic, but you can also use it as an opportunity to transition from one lifestyle to another. I don't regret the lifestyle flip I made and I couldn't be less apologetic about it.

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