Happy summer everybody! My summer has been busy starting two new jobs (which are fantastic) and spending lots of time drinking coffee…and catching up on sleep. As I prepare mentally to start my senior year of college in the Fall, I thought I’d revisit my days as a Freshman to help you guys get ready for your first year! College can be really stressful, not going to sugar coat it, but what you can do is save yourself some stress while getting ready for it! That’s why I’m here. I have some really exciting posts in store for you this month to help you prepare and organize your way into the dorms and into college life. Today, we’re going to get the most important/lengthy post out of the way so you can start on it early. The packing list. *DUN DUN* It’ll be fun. Don’t worry. All right, so I’m going to split this into categories. Here they are:
- School supplies
LETS GET STARTED. YES.
- Two pillows – You really don’t need more than this. The beds aren’t that big.
- Body pillow – This is a MUST because when you’re up against the wall on the bunk, you’re gonna want some cushion between you and the wall.
- 2/3 sets of quality sheets – I would suggest investing in some nice sheets that will last you a couple years. I didn’t and ended up with one set, so I had to wash them all the time and it was a hassle. The beds are size Twin XL, so make sure you get the right size.
- A light blanket – For the warmer months. Those dorms don’t have A/C, folks…
- A comforter – This is the Midwest. You know this one.
- Egg crate mattress pad – Or one of the other designs they have on them. These beds aren’t the best, but my bed was heavenly with a mattress pad. This is a MUST.
- Fabric spray – Febreze has awesome fabric freshener. I never had time to wash my sheets every other week, so these helped with keeping my bedding smelling nice. Also good for futons and pillows!
- Sterilite drawers – Or something like them. They are going to help with keeping your things organized so much. You could use them for socks/underwear, hair/makeup, or food/snack storage.
- Desks – the dorms have their own desks and shelves, and I recommend you use them wisely! I kept all my school supplies on the shelves in the drawers in my desk.
- Cube baskets – These are AWESOME for closet storage. You get more room on the shelf in your closet than you think, especially when have it organized. These can hold extra clothes, cleaning supplies, food, vinyl records, medicine/hygiene products, and the list goes on. You can get these almost everywhere.
- Underbed bin – These fit well underneath the bottom bunk, if you decide to do a bunk-bed style room. OR if you have a futon! These are good for holding snacks, clothes, or extra blankets.
- Desk organization – Ya need something to hold all your pens and paper clips! The link is only an example, but you get the jist.
- Command hooks – All the command hooks.
- Backpack – Y’all know this. Stout actually provides a backpack for you when you pick up your laptop.
- Notebooks w/pockets in it – I don’t like folders. They’re too flimsy and rip in my backpack. I like the notebooks that have pockets in them because they’re more secure.
- Pens and pencils – Do I have to explain this one?
- Highlighters – These will help you so much if you use them right. Buy some that you’ll like using! At Stout, you CAN highlight in the textbooks! (My roommate asked.)
- Post-its – I stick them everywhere to give me reminders of encouragement, assignments, and events I need to put in my planner. Or doodles.
- Post-it tabs – I use these in my planner on important days and in my textbooks on pages with main points on them.
- A planner – I’ll say it again, A PLANNER. Invest in a nice one that you will use! It will help you keep your life in order, especially if you end up being a part of student orgs (which you should!!) or have a busy schedule.
- Calculator – Depending on your major, you’ll need this for two classes, or maybe 15. Bring it just in case so you don’t have to buy a new one.
- Note cards
- Fun-tac – This is for hanging up posters! It won’t ruin your poster, nor the wall. And it’s SO much cheaper than double-sided tape or command strips. This will also stick to the popcorn ceilings if you wish to put posters on the ceiling… It will also stick to the cinderblock walls better than tape. You can get this at Walmart.
- Portable charger – These will save you when you didn’t charge your phone/laptop the night before and you have a quiz in 20 minutes or phone interview! Just remember to charge them once in a while, but otherwise just keep it in your backpack!
- Printer paper – The dorms have printers in their basements, so ink and service is free, but the paper is not. Sometimes people leave paper down there for others, but it’s a safe bet to bring your own.
- Shower sandals
- Shower caddy (for the shower) – Do I need to explain?
- Small caddy (for the sink) – To carry face wash, toothpaste and toothbrush, and whatever else you need for the morning and nightly routine!
- Towels – At least 3 big towels.
- Velvet no-slip hangers – These will save a mess of clothes from forming on your closet floor. They did for me. Aaaaaaand they save more room in your closet because they’re thinner than the basic plastic hangers.
- Detergent, fabric softener, and dryer sheets – Detergent is obvious, but softener will really keep your clothes fresh until the next time you wash your clothes. Also, with all the other students washing their clothes in the laundry room, you might want to freshen your clothes’ smell…if you’re catching my drift.
- Shoe storage – I used a milk crate to hold all my shoes and it fit nicely next to my dresser/in my closet. You can always go with the door hanger with all the pockets to hold shoes, too. I’m just sayin’, it’s really nice to have somewhere to keep your shoes out of the way because they cause instant clutter…and odor.
- Laundry bag – I wish I wouldve had a laundry bag opposed to a basket. The basket takes up room in your closet while a bag is free form so it can squish and take up less space!
- Futon/love-seat couch – Every dorm room needs one. It’s a rite of passage.
- Rug – The dorm carpet is hard and super uncomfortable. It might as well be cement. A rug would be a very wise decision for comfort and decoration.
- Power strip – These are strongly encouraged by the university, so definitely stock up on a couple.
- Coffeemaker – Whether it’s an old-fashioned 8-cup maker or a Keurig machine, you’re going to want coffee. All the coffee. I had an espresso machine in my room sophomore year because my roommate bought it with graduation money the year before.
- Christmas lights – cheap mood lighting.
- Small vacuum – My mom bought me a small Dirt Devil vacuum at Goodwill and it was the best thing ever. I didn’t have to go downstairs or across the dorms to get the big vacuum for a small Goldfish spill.
- Plasticware – You’re not going to eat your main meals in your room, but sometimes you might need to stay in and study and eat a whole bag of Pizza Rolls, so having some inexpensive (things break) microwavable plates and bowls will be handy.
See, it’s really not THAT long! Nothing to be too scared about. I hope you all find what you need before you get here! There is a CVS in Downtown Menomonie, and a Walmart on the north side of town, so you can get any miscellaneous items in town once you’re here! Let me know if you have any questions about the list!
Stay tuned for posts this month that will help you prepare for moving into the dorms and living in Menomonie!