Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Stuffed Shells

If I could only pick one staple piece for the summer season, it would probably be an easy to throw on, causal dress. I have always been a dress girl and probably have a few too many hanging in my closet! But easy summer dresses are the best as they are so versatile and can be worn for everything from everyday wear to a fun dinner out!

No one does fun summer prints better than Lilly Pulitzer so when I saw this gorgeous dress in the Jacksonville store when I was visiting my grandparents back in June (which y'all can read about here), I knew I had to have it! I have worn it so much this summer and recently wore it when I was up in Upstate New York for a dinner with my family at one of our favorite restaurants there.

Dress- Lilly Pulitzer Sandals- Jack Rogers Earrings- Sheila Fajl Bracelet- David Yurman

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

How to Succeed Academically in College

I would say a pretty common fear for incoming college freshman is doing well in your classes. I remember my teachers in high school saying how much harder classes in college would be and since I'm the oldest child of my family, I didn't have an older brother or sister to give me insight on what classes would be like so I wanted to share some of my tips with y'all!

I would not necessarily say that college classes are crazily harder than high school (especially if you took multiple AP courses) but they are just different. In college, you have a few classes a day for a few hours and then the rest of the day free in comparison to high school when you had 6-7 hours of class a day. College is a lot less busy work than high school but is all very manageable, especially if you prepare yourself!

Go to office hours
Professors have office hours to help out their students and it is definitely worth it to go to extra clarification or help. I've received extra credit for going to office hours before so that's just an extra benefit! Plus, if the class is on the larger side, this can help your professor put a face to the name that appears on various assignments and exams.

Study with friends in the class
I am definitely lucky because Elementary Education at Clemson is a smaller major (only 50 students per grade level) so I know the majority of people in my classes, which makes things easier. I honestly do not think I would of survived my Geography class last semester if it weren't for my friends who were in it with me as we would all get together to study, which is beneficial as someone probably has the answer to any of your questions and it makes studying a bit more enjoyable!

Start early
Procrastinating does not make your studying any easier and adds extra stress to it. I recommend starting big assignments earlier than you need to so that you can put the extra effort into it and create the best work you can! I do study the best the night before but I will work on a study guide or Quizlet before that so I'm a little more prepared.

Find your most productive study spot
I realized my freshman year that I do not study well in my own room as I get distracted my what my friends around me are doing or I want to eat all the snacks I have (lol). I personally work best in the library or in Starbucks. Some of my friends, however, despise the library and work better in their own room. Experiment the first month or two to find the study spot that works best for you as you'll be able to be so much more productive there.

Use an agenda
If you read this blog post, you saw that most of my friends commented on my love for my agenda. It truly keeps my life together as I write down everything going on (classes, sorority commitments, meetings, etc.) as well as my to-do list. This helps me manage my time as if I see that Thursday, for example, is a busy day, I'll try to get more work done before then to prepare. It also helps me plan time to hang out with friends, eat, workout, etc. I use a Day Designer agenda and it's definitely pricy but so worth it!

Stay on top of your email inbox/Canvas
Clemson uses Canvas so I try to check that fairly often so I can stay up-to-date on due dates and things of that nature. I also check my email pretty often so I don't miss anything going on! Doing this ensures that I never miss a deadline as I'm able to add it to my calendar and properly prepare!

Any other tips on how to succeed in college? Let me know in the comments!

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

College Move-In Day Essentials

That time of the year is almost here again- college move in day! I have already shared my college packing list and then what clothes to pack for college but wanted to focus on move in day itself as items you'll for that can be easy to overlook!

Move-In Day can be pretty overwhelming as it's emotional for you and your family since you'll be leaving home. Being prepared definitely helps things run a bit smoother and who doesn't love making their day go easier?

Basic Tool Kit
This is helpful to have on hand because you never know what you'll need it for! From lofting your bed to putting together that futon, it's better to have the tool kit just in case you (or someone on your hall) needs to use it!

If you're hanging anything up on your walls, bring a level to make sure everything is straight and even!

Labels for your Stuff
The way Clemson moves you in is you park as close as possible to your dorm, unload everything, and then drive your car to a farther away parking lot to help traffic flow. Clemson has upperclassmen volunteer to move freshmen in so people will probably help you bring all of your stuff up to your dorm. I definitely recommend putting labels on all of your stuff with your first and last name, building name, and then room number so you don't loose anything!

Bag full of Clothes for the First Few Days
This is helpful if you plan on taking more than one day to move in so you do not have to dig through your stuff to find your pajamas or whatever. I went through sorority recruitment (be sure to check out my post on recruitment tips and also what to pack in your recruitment bag!) last fall, which started the day after move in so I kept all of my clothes for recruitment in a weekender bag so it was all in one place and wouldn't get mixed up!

Trash Bags
To save space, I moved some of my stuff into my dorm in its original packaging (like my mattress topper for example). When I got everything into my room, however, you have to take everything out of its plastic so having a giant trash bag handy is so helpful!

Water Bottles + Lots of Snacks
Move-in day can be a pretty long day for everyone so be sure to stay hydrated and bring snacks so you don't get hangry! Most places will be roasting on move-in day and you'll probably be taking lots of flights of stairs as the elevators will be packed- definitely bring water!

Storage Totes
I moved a lot of my stuff into my dorm using storage totes, which was super helpful as my parents just brought them home with them after move-in then brought them back to Clemson for move-out! You won't have a lot of space in your dorm so if you aren't going to be using something regularly, leave it at home!

Lots of Command Strips
Most dorms have rules against making holes in your walls so command strips will be your saving grace! Bring more than you think you will need as they come in handy for hanging up pictures or for adding hooks in your closet for purses or scarves!

Vacuum + Cleaning Supplies
Hopefully, you will be packing a vacuum and cleaning supplies anyways for your dorm but they are helpful for move in day to clean your dorm room before adding any of your own items. This will make me sound like a super clean freak but taking a Clorox wipe to everything and vacuuming the floors got rid of any dirt and germs from over the summer!

And lastly, be sure to have a lot of patience during move-in day! It can be a pretty long day for everyone so it's important to have a lot of patience. It will probably take you a lot longer than you think to get everything into your dorm, your entire family may be stepping on each others's toes trying to unpack everything, and it can be easy to get a little frustrated. Remember that it's ok if everything doesn't go according to plan and your dorm will be unpacked and ready to go before you know it!

What are some other essentials for move-in day essentials? Let me know in the comments!

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Weekend Reading

Happy Saturday! As y'all are reading this, my family and I are making the 14 hour trek from our lake house in Upstate New York back home to North Carolina!

Each week here on CiC, I shared 10 links of what has been on my radar this week. It's perfect to read alongside a cup of coffee and maybe a donut!

1. Updates to the blog have definitely been on my mind as of late! I've been trying to get content scheduled for the next few weeks to prepare for sorority recruitment and the first few weeks of school and I just set up my email list (be sure to subscribe here!). A redesign and a url update have also been on the to-do list so if you have any web designers you love let me know!

2. Thinking of going through sorority recruitment (which you definitely should!)? My friend Madison just shared an extensive guide to recruitment on her blog!

3. Mackenzie shared an interview with her grandmother, which was so fun to read

4. I loved Amy's blog post about being "sisters squared" with her younger sister as they're both Thetas- too cute!

5. Obsessed with Evelyn Henson's new throw pillows

6. Speaking of Evelyn Henson, if you're in Charlotte this weekend, be sure to check out the popup hosted by Shannon of Prep Avenue, Evelyn Henson, and Madeline & Company at Swoozie's today from 12-3. Since I am driving back from New York, I am so bummed to be missing it!

7. Caitlin's home tour (part 1 & part 2) is so gorgeous

8. Obsessed with these Lilly workout leggings!

9. Loved my friend Annaliese's post on her blog's mission statement- it makes me want to pull together one for Chic in Carolina!

10. I am so excited for Big Little Lies season 2 and did y'all hear about what just happened on the set?

Have a great weekend!

Friday, August 3, 2018

My Chic Week: July 27- August 2

Happy Friday from Upstate New York! Today is our last day at the lake and it's also the one week countdown until I'm back in Clemson, which is absolutely crazy! I have a lot to do this week to get ready to go back to school but I will also be soaking in these last few days of summer!

Last Friday, my family and I got up at the crack of dawn (literally...I woke up at 3:30 AM) to drive to our lake house in Upstate New York. It's about a 14 hour drive from Charlotte so it was definitely a long day haha!

Once we arrived at the house, we unpacked and then went to our family friends's house for dinner! My cousins also arrived at the house later that night.

Saturday started off with a grocery run and then our family friends arrived for a quick visit! Once they arrived, we ate lunch and then headed out on the lake for the afternoon!

Our family friends left on Sunday morning and Sunday was another gorgeous lake day! After dinner, we made s'mores as it was a gorgeous night!

Our trips are always so relaxed up at the lake so honestly most of our time is spent out on the lake! Monday was more of the same and we went to our favorite ice cream place (their portion sizes are crazy!) after dinner!

right: sandals

Tuesday was another lake day and afterwards, I got ready for dinner and shot some blog pictures for y'all! We went out to dinner, which was so yummy!

It was a little rainy in the morning on Wednesday so we hung out at the house before going to lunch in town. After lunch, we grabbed some ice cream and did a little shopping. Thankfully, the weather cleared up in the afternoon so we were able to spend some time on the lake!

Thursday was another fun lake day followed by a yummy dinner at the house and s'mores!

Happy Friday!

Thursday, August 2, 2018

How to Make Your Dorm Feel Like Home

Is it weird that I still remember walking into my freshman dorm for the first time last fall and noticing how bland and empty it is? Without all of your stuff and decorations, the space definitely looks bland at first, especially when your dorm is your new home at your school.

A lot of freshmen in college struggle with homesickness as they are away from home for the first time and I think that making your dorm feel like home as much as possible helps you adjust to calling your school your second home. Around September or October, my friends who lived on our floor were saying how we would say we were going home when we meant our dorm rooms and how crazy that was as it felt like home very quickly! I wanted to share with y'all how to make your dorm feel a bit more homey so you'll be calling your dorm room home too!

add throw pillows
Buying a bunch of cute throw pillows for your bed (and futon if you have one!) is such a great way to add a personal touch to your space. It makes it look more like someone lives there and makes your space more comfortable and inviting!

add a cozy rug
Most dorm rooms have an oddly colored carpet or cold tile on the floors so adding a cozy rug helps to warm up the space a bit. Whether it's to add a pop of color (my next-door neighbors on my floor had the cutest hot pink rug!) or to be a cozy neutral, it makes your room more inviting and less sterile!

add touches of home
Don't be afraid of not bringing something to college because you're too old for it. I know a lot of girls who brought a favorite stuffed animal or blanket with me and it makes your room more homey. Decorating in a similar style to your house at home or adding something that reminds you of home can make your dorm be cozier.

personalize your space
Adding personal touches is the best way to make your dorm look less sterile and more homey! Whether it's a wooden monogram on your wall, a gallery wall that shows off your personality, or fun items on your shelf, this is a great way to show off your personality and jazz up the space!

add pictures of your favorite people and places
I printed a lot of pictures of my family, friends, and some of my favorite places to hang up in my room. I hung up a bunch by my bed, which was always comforting to know that even though I may not physically close to my family and friends from home, they were always supporting me!

add colorful curtains
I think curtains are one of those items that makes your room look like a "real" room rather than a dorm room! This isn't something you don't have to spend a ton of money either- I wound up finding curtains that used to be in my younger sister's room and happened to fit the color scheme of my dorm!

make your bed be as comfy as possible
A comfy mattress topper is a must-have for college! If you're only going to splurge on one thing for your dorm, definitely splurge on a good mattress topper as it is so worth it to get good sleep!  My bed was always so cozy and it was so nice to crawl into it after a busy day of classes! I also added a headboard, which made my bed look more like "real" furniture and less like something 500 other girls have in their dorms.

How did you make your dorm feel like more of a home? Let me know in the comments!

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

July Favorites

How on Earth is it already August? July was a month of travel (Hilton Head for the fourth, Bald Head with the family I nanny for, and I've been in Upstate New York this week) so it flew by faster than usual it feels like!

Even though I had such a fun July, I can not help but be excited for August as I'll be enjoying my last few days of summer and then heading back to Clemson for sorority recruitment and the start of school. Even though I'm not looking forward to homework and spending free time in the library, I'm so excited to be back with my friends!

Each month here on the blog, I share my favorites from the month before! It is such a fun series as it gives y'all insight into what I have been loving during that month!

Tory Burch Sunglasses- While shopping in Hilton Head earlier this month, we popped into a sunglass shop where I fell in love with these sunglasses. I love how classic they are and how they go with any outfit!

David Yurman Cable Classics Bracelet- I've had my eye on this bracelet forever and have been putting away some of my nannying money away this summer to save up for it. I finally splurged and absolutely love it as even though it is a fancier piece, you can still wear it everything!

Lilly Pulitzer Beach Hat- Earlier this summer, my Lilly Pulitzer store had an event where they had one of the Lilly painters come to the store and paint custom beach hats and clutches! I could not say no to that and absolutely love how mine came out!

Amazon Echo Dot- My family has had an Amazon Echo for the past two years and we love love love it. My dad received an Echo Dot at some event and my brother was using it but decided to give it to me. I am planning on bringing it for my dorm but have been using it in my room at home and love it so far!

Kate Spade Phone Case- For the past year, I have been using the phone case that I got when I bought my phone but didn't 100% love. During Prime Day, I saw that they had a bunch of cute Kate Spade cases on sale so I decided to get a new one!

Water Pick- This is admittedly the most random pick ever but earlier this month, I randomly bought a water pick from Amazon and I love love love it! I have a permanent retainer behind both my top and bottom teeth from having braces in middle school so this makes sure everything gets clean since flossing is tricky with a retainer!

Sheila Fajl Hoops- I've had my eye on these hoops for a while as a lot of girls at Clemson have them and love them and after seeing them in Dorothy's "Amazon Favorites" post, I realized they were significantly cheaper on Amazon so I decided to splurge! They are super lightweight and jazz up any outfit!

What were your July Favorites? Let me know in the comments!