Fall is finally here everyone…officially! Can you believe it? I feel like just yesterday we were starting spring and the beginning of quarantine. I can’t even tell you where summer went. Honestly, I feel like it has been fall for awhile though. I start to prepare so far in advance, and I where I live, it gets cold FAST. I have a couple fall themed spreads for you today, but you could really make them for any season if you just change the drawings 🙂
Fall Bucket List
This spread is so cute and fall-like, it makes me so happy every time I use it. I wanted to give you this spread to either recreate with your own fall bucket list, or just to give you inspiration on what to do over the weekend. By all means, feel free to just go out and copy these plans, that’s what they’re here for!
To make this spread, I started out with a cute little “fall bucket list” title: you can write/draw this in any way you want. Then I have three categories: a general bucket list, a food and drink list, and a self care list. My general list was the longest and included some of the most important foods, drinks, and self care items that I want to do this fall. I used little fall icons instead of checkmarks to show which activities I did. Once I complete the activity, I can just color in the little leaf, ghost, or candy corn.
Spooky Season Mood Tracker
I’m sure you’ve all seen mood trackers before, and maybe you like them or maybe you don’t. One thing that some people don’t like about them is that they require work every day, but I love this because it keeps me accountable. Plus it only takes about ten seconds. A mood tracker is great to view at the end of the month, so you can see how you felt throughout each week. It is also great to go through different mood trackers from month to month so you can track your progress over a long period of time. For example, maybe you had a really hard April, but May you decided to work on your mental health, and your mood tracker reflected that!
To make this spread, I wrote October on the bottom (for some crazy reason). If I were you, I would put the spider web and the October label at the top since October comes before November. To make the spider web, start by drawing three long lines that intersect at the middle. The draw little curves between each line. You want to make five spaces for each line, giving you a total of thirty little crevices. Then, you can color in each box by the day. What I didn’t post on here was my key for the October mood tracker, which is just different colors. Everyday, I just color in the little crevice that corresponds to that day. If you were sad all day, maybe it would be blue, or if it was a great day, maybe it would be pink.
The November mood tracker is a little bit different because it uses patterns as a key instead of colors. Start by making a scarf however you want. My scarf was five boxes wide and each day was two boxes down. So, each day corresponded to eight boxes which is just enough to create a pattern. Based on how I felt that day, I would color in each pattern accordingly. For example, a great day is a polka dot pattern. I am so exited to see how this spread looks at then end of the month, with a fully colored in scarf! Don’t worry, I will post pictures:)
I hope these spreads give you a little inspiration for some fall bullet journaling! Let me know if you end up using these, or any other fall spreads. And, are there any other fall spreads you want me to do??
There are so many new adventures at college and so much to get adjusted to: of course, eating is one thing that will be very different than before. Whether you made all your own meals at home, or you went out a lot, life at college will be very different. You are going to be running around to classes, and you might forget to eat lunch or dinner sometimes. Or, maybe at lunch you only have ten minutes between classes and you have to skip it for the day (I would suggest not doing this, and I will let you know how to avoid it). No matter what, dining at college is going to look at lot different than at home. Plus, dining this year(with COVID) is going to be even tougher. I am here to share with you a few tips on getting adjusted to college eating.
#1. Look at all the options
When you get to college, scope out all the dining halls have to offer. Does each dining hall have separate options, or all they all the same? If you are vegetarian, or have other dietary needs, is there a specific dining hall for that? Most colleges provide special services and foods to people with have dietary needs. For example, we have a vegan zone, and a gluten free zone.
You should really get to know all the options of each dining hall, and what they provide each day. There may be a salad bar you really like at one hall, or a really good hot meal line at another. Make sure you know when each hall opens so you know the times you can go eat. You may realize one hall is only open for dinner, or one has extended hours. Lastly, figure out if they post the meals ahead of time, so you can look at them before you enter the dining hall.
#2. Understand your body’s needs
The most important part of eating in college, and out of college, is to listen to your body’s triggers. Eat when you are hungry, your body deserves it. With everything going on, sometimes we forget to take the time to eat, but try not to let that happen. If you skip meals, your body will feel it later. You will most likely get into a routine of when you eat each day, and your body will get used to that as well. For me, I eat every day around noon and I start to get hungry right around 11:30. If you aren’t hungry but you know you should eat, maybe just make a smaller snack. But, when your body IS hungry, never deprive yourself of a meal.
#3. Plan your meals out
Plan a time for breakfast, lunch, and dinner each day. It may be different times daily, or it could be the same. It’s super easy if you always eat at the same time, but if not plan time the night before for all your meals.
If you can see the dining hall menu ahead of time, try to look at that so it alleviates some stress walking into the hall. It also helps you choose the healthier options if you can plan out a meal ahead of time. Sometimes walking into the hall, we just pick the first thing we see, but looking ahead of time allows you to figure out what you will or won’t like. If you can’t see the meals ahead of time, no worries. When you get into the hall, navigate it with a good mindset. Try to balance your meal with fruits, veggies, and proteins.
#4. Get in your essential nutrients
We all know that protein, carbs, and fats are necessary macronutrients for life. But… how many of us strive to get the nutrients we really need? In college(and any other time in your life), it is really important that you fuel your body. Make sure you are getting in your fruits and veggies in every meal, and some source of protein. You need energy to function, which is why it is so necessary that you eat food that will keep you full and give you energy for the day.
While it is really important to fuel your body right, eat what you want as well. If you have a dessert at night, that’s okay. Enjoy your food, go get ice cream with your friends, eat out at a nice restaurant sometimes. Everything is okay in moderation, never let anyone tell you you can’t eat something! I am a big advocate in doing what makes you happy, and if that is having dessert with dinner, do it.
#5. Take what you ACTUALLY want
When you get into the dining hall, it will usually be a buffet where you can take as much or as little as you want. You may see a soup and salad bar, a hot line, a breakfast bar, and much more. Some bigger campuses have huge dining halls with fifteen choices, and you may have no idea what to get. Like I said before, it is really useful if the college posts the menu ahead of time. Then you can walk in on a mission knowing exactly what you want.
While it may be temping to get a little bit of food from every part of the hall, try to think about what you will actually eat in one sitting. Think about how much you would normally eat at home and try to base it off that. That way you don’t leave with so many meals that you either try to eat all at once or just leave in your room forever. If you take it back to your room, chances are it will just get thrown away at some point. One exception is if you know you won’t have time to go to the hall later that day or for your next meal. For example, maybe you have a class that goes all the way through lunch. In that case, I would plan on grabbing some food for your next meal or a snack.
#6. Relax while you’re eating
One thing I always strive for is to take a break from school and work while I am eating. Your brain really needs a rest because it is unhealthy to just sit there and study for hours at a time. Rather than watching Tik Tok every fifteen minutes as a brain break, use your meals as a time to relax. It may only be half an hour, but it is a set time in the day where you can give yourself a break. I try to eat with friends a lot too because it is a great time to socialize and you know everyone has to eat. If you want to eat alone some days, that’s fine too. My advice is to just get out of the room for awhile and enjoy yourself.
Of course, there will be times when you have a huge test to study for and you don’t have time to take a break. When that happens, at least eat while you’re studying, and try not to just skip a meal.
#7. Try something new
College dining is a great time to reach out of your comfort zone and try some new foods. At home, we tend to resort to the same types of food all the time. In college, the meals are always rotating and there are always so many options. Whenever I look at the menu, there is always something I’ve never heard of. There may be a new vegan meal with a special type of tofu, or there may be a new type of ethnic dish. Whatever it is, try something new at LEAST once a week. Plus, you can always grab a salad or something just in case you don’t like it.
Who knows, you may get some ideas for making dinner when you get back home!
#8.Stock up on some healthy snacks
If you’re anything like me, you get hungry at the most random times. Like 10 pm, right when you want to go to bed. It’s the worst! This is why I always think it is important to keep a few light, healthy snacks in your room.
The point is: you might get hungry when the hall isn’t open, or you may not have time to actually go get food one day. So, if you get some healthy snacks from the store(or from the dining hall) you will always have something easily accesible. Try to make these snacks things that won’t go bad quickly so you can just keep them and not have to worry. You don’t want a week old burger sitting around rotting! Lol.
Something I really appreciate in my dining hall is that they always have cereal, fresh fruit and granola up for grabs. I like to stock up on these in my room just in case of emergency. I also try to keep some more filling snacks, like protein bars and peanut butter. Since I have a lot of early classes, I often don’t have time to run to the dining hall before. So, I will just eat some fruit that I grabbed from the dining hall the night before, or a granola bar.
Like I said in #4, try not to grab more than you know you will eat before it goes bad. However, if you stock up on some cereal, it’ll stay good in your room for awhile and you know you always have it.
#9. Eat all your meals
Eat three meals a day! Try your absolute best not to miss meals! Like I mentioned before, if you know you don’t have time to get to the dining hall for a meal, grab something before hand. You may have a class that goes right through lunch time, but that doesn’t mean you just shouldn’t eat lunch. If you miss meals, you won’t be fueled and ready to go for the rest of the day. With all the added stress that college brings, you really want to make sure you’re fueling your body.
That also means that you SHOULDN’T skip breakfast. I have a lot of early classes, and I always want to sleep in until the very last minute. Instead, I make myself get up to eat some breakfast. Plus, I usually don’t have time for a snack between breakfast and lunchtime, which is why it is so important I have a real breakfast early in the morning. So, wake up an extra ten minutes early to eat, and don’t press that snooze button. If you don’t wake up in time for breakfast, make sure to have a snack to get you going until lunch.
No matter how busy you are, always make time to eat. If that means planning out your day by the hour so you ensure you have time, then do that. If you know you can eat everyday at noon, do that! And, if you’re hungry throughout the day, get a snack. The best thing you can do is listen to your body.
#10. Give yourself, and your body, a break
The MOST important piece of advice I can give!!
We’ve all heard about it and we all fear it: the freshman fifteen. It is a common belief that when you go to college, you will gain “fifteen pounds in your first year”. The truth is, you might gain a bit of weight, and that happens. Going to college is a huge life change, and you will likely be eating much different than at home. Give your body time to adapt to the change, while doing what you can to stay healthy and happy.
A part of the problem is stress and lack of sleep! Sometimes you may be so stressed that you don’t sleep, or you just don’t go to bed until two in the morning. Remember that this hurts your body, and you need sleep! It may contribute to weight gain, but I encourage you not to think about that part of it. Instead, focus on how your body needs sleep to function. If you get a good amount of sleep, you will feel so much better physically and mentally.
Yes, you might gain some weight, and that is totally okay AND totally normal. Forget about the scale and focus on your mental health remind yourself that you are beautiful no matter what, and don’t be so hard on yourself.
Welcome back from the weekend everyone, I hope you all had some time to enjoy yourselves and take a break from school and/or work. Did you do anything fun, or do you have any plans for this upcoming weekend? I know it’s only Monday but it’s never too early to start planning out weekend activities!
Last week I shared a few college(or high school) bullet journal spreads, so I wanted to share the other half of those with you today.
In this spread, I have my class schedule spread out for each day. Each 30 minute time slot takes up three rows, meaning each dot is ten minutes. I love this spread because I can actually visualize what my day will look like. For example, you can see use how open my Thursday morning is, but how on Monday I am really busy until noon. This spread works really well for college because each day is a bit different. I assume in high school your daily schedule is pretty much the same, but you could still draw this out to visualize your day.
Another thing I really like about this spread is that it helps me plan out meetings around my classes. When someone asks when I am free during the day, all I have to do is look at this spread. Of course, individual weeks may look a little different based on other events going on.
To make this spread, divide the page into five equal sections horizontally, plus one smaller section that just says “day” and “time.” The “day” points to the day of the week and “time” points down to the time each class is. Use each of the other five sections, and write the days of the week in them. Next, use whatever scale you want to do the times. If you want every fifteen minutes to be a box, write the hour every four boxes. I wanted each box to be ten minutes, so the hours were every six boxes. Finally, write in your classes according to the times, and write as much information about the class as you want into the boxes.
This spread was originally for tracking just the attendance in class. If you went to class, didn’t go, or if it was cancelled, all the information would be right here. However, I converted it to a tracker for online and in person classes instead. With COVID, I have some classes always in person, some always online, and some that are hybrid. So, I have a key at the bottom (not pictured) for the days I have class online, in person, or no class. I would color the section in each day according to the key, whether it was in person, online, etc. For example, I used “in person” as pink, so all the times class was in person I drew a little pink square.
To make this spread, I started by numbering the weeks on the side. I wrote the date and the week number. Then, I wrote each class and and the days of the week I have that class across the top. Each day takes up two dots. So, biology is three days a week, meaning its entire section is six boxes. Between each class, I wrote a long line all the way down the paper. Then, I colored in each box for whatever the class was that day. I made another key (just a checkmark and an x) to track if I made it to class or not. I put a checkmark on the box if I go, and an x if I don’t. Don’t worry, I HAVE gone to all of my classes.
This is my semester overview at a glance. Here is where I put all of my big tests, papers, and assignments. I love this spread because I can see everything from every class all in one place. It lets me know if I am going to have a crazy busy week, so I might want to start planning a bit in advance. I check this at least once a week, so I can update my weekly schedule (I use a monthly, weekly, and daily planner). I would recommend making this spread at the beginning of the semester so you don’t have to worry about it again. Most teachers will hand out a syllabus on the first day with all your assignments.
For this spread, I decided to put 2 months into one page, but you could do one month per page, or many months per page. First, drew line across the page horizontally about four dots down, then wrote all my classes at the top of the page in that area. Next, I split the bottom part into two equal sections, for the two months. I did October and November, so I wrote the names of the two months then wrote a mini calendar below. Next, you will write all you assignments and the days they are due. If you want to circle the days on the calendar, you can do that as well. You could also make another key for type of assignment. A circle could mean a test, so you would circle the date that you have a test on the mini calendar. In theory, I would highlight each class at the top a different color so I could highlight the assignments below to match.
Today I want to try a new type of blog post: a day in my life, AKA a day in the life of a college student. Of course, it differs a bit from day to day, depending on if I have a meeting with a teacher, a big test coming up that I’m studying for, etc. And, I don’t have the same number of classes each day: I have three classes some days, and only one other days. However, I generally do similar activities no matter what classes I have that day.
7:30-8:30: Depending on what time I have class, I will get up somewhere between 7:30 and 8:30. If I have an online class, I usually only get up about 15 minutes early so I can get my morning routine planned. If I have a class in person, I usually get up about 25 minutes early because it takes me a little longer to get ready, then I have to walk to the class. Since I go to such a small school, I only need ten minutes at most to walk to my classes. I also pack my backpack or set up my desk (for an online class) the night before so I don’t have to worry about that when I get up in the morning.
Some days, like today, I will get up an extra fifteen minutes early to get breakfast from the dining hall. I didn’t have online class until 8:30, so I got up at 8 to get breakfast and eat before I had to log on to the call. It’s a bonus if the professor doesn’t care if you’re eating on the call, or if you can just have your camera turned off. I usually keep cereal and fruit in my room as well, in case I don’t wake up in time to run to the dining hall.
I try to put up my daily quotes during this time as well, so they’re up for the rest of the day.
8:30-12:00: I usually have class during this time since I have a lot of morning classes. Four out of five days I am done with class by noon, which is so nice. Yes, it does suck getting up early, but then I have the rest of the day to do my homework and relax. If I have time in between two classes, I will try to get some homework done.
12:00-1:00: Lunch time! I try to eat lunch around the same time everyday, and I usually go with my roommate and maybe a few friends (socially distanced of course). This is my time out of the day when I just get to relax before the afternoon homework begins. I always look forward to lunch because who doesn’t look forward to eating? LOL. After lunch I know it is time to get work done, but I try not to worry about that while I’m eating.
1:00-4:00: This is a my “little bit of everything time.” I usually start out by working out. I try to work out most days here at college because it keeps me in the routine and puts my mind at ease. I have dumbbells in my room, so sometimes I lift weights, but sometimes I go outside for a run as well. The gyms just opened up, so I could go to them in theory. However, sometimes working out in the quiet of my own room is nice, same with going on a run while exploring the town.
This is also the time where I normally talk to my boyfriend and mom, to check in and see how they’re doing. It puts me at ease to give them a quick call and know that everything is going okay back home. Honestly, the time varies, but even if I get to talk to them for two minutes, I’m happy.
I’ll do some homework from 1:00-4:00, but usually only for about an hour. I work on my blog for a good chunk of time as well.
4:00-6:00/7:00: I always try to get the bulk of my homework done around this time. If I don’t have a lot of homework, I might take a nap. To be fair, I do take a lot of naps, but only if I get my work done. It makes me feel better to finish all my homework that I NEED to get done before dinner. That way any homework I have to do after dinner is not due the next day, just stuff I am trying to get ahead on. I also try to blog during this time, or bullet journal. My goal is too spend at least half an hour working on my blog every day, no matter how busy I am. Blogging is my time to express myself and not worry about anything else, which is why I love it so much. Plus, I know you guys are counting on me to put out new content every week.
6:30/7:30: Sometime between 6:30 and 7:30 each night, I go grab dinner with some friends. If I have too much work to do, I will just take my homework to my room, but I try not to have to do that.
7:30(ish)-9:30(ish): Last bit of homework for the day. Usually I have my homework that HAS to be done finished by this time, but I try to get ahead just in case something comes up the next day or week. If I have nothing to do during this time, I work on my bullet journal or blog.
9:30: By 9:30, I’m done with homework for the night. I usually watch TV with my roommate, while editing my blogs. I also work on my daily planner schedule, which I try to do every day. I also work on my daily planner for the next day.
My hourly/daily planner: I have my weekly and monthly layouts in my bullet journal, but have an hourly/daily planner to plan out my full days as well. I only do this the night before because the schedule of my days changes so much. In this planner, I (roughly) plan out my day, with my top priorities and my to-do list. In a future post, I will show you a little bit more about this planner and give you a link to buy it yourself!
11:00: Turn off TV and computer and do my nightly routine.
11:15: BED TIME! I always try to get to bed around 11:15 so I have a full 8 hours of sleep. Depending on when I have to get up, I may go to bed a little earlier or later. Getting enough sleep is really important to me, which is why I give myself a “bed time.”
Well, there’s my day for you! Of course, there are special things I do on certain days. For example, on Sundays I bullet journal, and on Thursdays I often meet with my biology group. For the most part, this is what College with EmmaGrace is!
Hi all! Happy Monday, I hope you have an amazing start to your week. A great Monday sets you into the swing for a great week. Sooo.. start the day by waking up early and treating yourself to a nice cup of coffee (or whatever beverage you prefer). Do something for yourself today, whether it be writing in a journal or taking a long bath. Whatever you choose, make sure you’re just taking some time for you! It is important to practice self care everyday, but I feel like Mondays are especially important because it sets you up for the rest of the week. If you love on yourself Monday, you will continue to have a great week afterwards. However, I feel like if I do nothing good for myself on Monday, I just continue that trend all week.
Another thing: make your bed! If you make your bed to begin the week, it keeps you going all week. If you don’t do it in the begining, you will never want to. Trust me, I’m speaking from experience. I won’t do something one day, then it turns into two days, and a whole week. Long story short: start Monday off productive!
TodayI just wanted to give you a quick overview of my morning and nightly routines.
SPOILER ALERT: I have a future post where I share a day in my life, so it obviously mentions my morning and night routines. As you may know, I love routine in my life because I think it puts you in control. So, here it goes!
Mornings: before class
Make my bed: I’ve talked this in a few other posts, but when you make your bed, you’ve accomplished the first task of the day.
Update my blog: As you’ve seen, I upload a new quote everyday. I try to do this right when I get up so it is ready for the rest of the day.
Brush my teeth, brush my hair, do my skin care routine: never forget your morning hygiene! It only takes about five minutes, and it’s so crucial to get you ready for the day. I normally don’t wear any makeup, just wash my face and put on some moisterizer, and I am good to go.
Get dressed. Duh. BUT I won’t lie… I do stay in my pajamas all day sometimes:)
Eat breakfast: Don’t forget the most important meal of the day! I try to eat breakfast everyday. Either I go to the dining hall or sometimes I just eat some fruit from my dorm room. If I don’t eat breakfast, I get very crabby by the time lunch comes around! Plus, I don’t have much time to eat a snack between my morning classes. When I get up and eat before going to class, I am ready to go and energized until lunch.
Drink a big glass of water: I try to drink 64 ounces of water, and when you wake up is a great time to start. Drinking water when you get up is awesome for rehydrating your body after sleep, so don’t forget a glass of water with your breakfast!
Brush my teeth, brush my hair, skincare routine, floss: Just as important as in the morning. Even when I am exhausted, I try to do all of this. Like I mentioned before, if I don’t do my nightly hygiene one night, it gets easier to forget about it the next night, and the rest of the week
Put on my PJs: I cannot sleep unless I’m super comfy, so comfy PJs are a must!
Set my alarm: Unless it’s the weekend, I have to wake up early for classes. I always set my alarm right before I go to bed. I actually set an alarm and a timer on my phone because I worry that one won’t go off. Call me overboard, but that happened to me one time and I never want it to happen again.
Fill out my daily planner for the next day: At the beginning of the week, I fill out my weekly planner with all my meetings, classes, and anything else I have planned. However, each night I fill out a daily planner that has my hour by hour schedule for the next day. I don’t have to stick to the exact schdeule, but at least it is a basic layout of the day. In my daily planner, I also have a list for top proiorities and a to-do list. My top priorities include the number of classes I have, meetings I have to attend, or big projects I have to complete. The to-do list contains smaller chores such as homework or work around the dorm.
Do some deep breathing: I often take a long time to fall asleep, especially if I have something on my mind. After I have done everything else for the night, I do some deep breathing for at least five minutes to ease my mind before I fall asleep. I find it helps me sleep better and takes my mind off of everything that happened during the day.
What I WISH I did
We all have things that we wish we did, but never get in the habit of doing, right? I am here to be truthful with you and tell you that I feel the same way. Here are some ideas of what I wish I included in my morning or night routines.
Stretching: I always stretch before and after I work out during the day, but I have never gotten into the habit or doing it when I wake up or go to bed. However, only five minutes of stretching in the morning and night is really good for you. In the morning, a stretch gets your muscles moving from a long night of rest, and it can wake up your brain. Stretching at night relaxes your mind and muscles from the day’s tensions.
Wake up earlier: I love to sleep, who doesn’t? But.. that means that I sleep in until I absolutely have to get up in the morning. One of my goals is to wake up just 10 minutes ealier so I have more time to myself just to wake up and prepare my mind for the day. I usually have a couple minutes of relaxation in the morning, but I would love to wake up just a tad earlier.
Be thankful: Of course, I’m always thankful for everyone and everything in my life. However, I would like to add just a minute of gratitude to my morning and nightly routines. I posted before about my gratitude tracker, but it would be awesome to go a little beyond that. Just two minutes twice a day where I just sit by myself and think about everything I love in my life. There is always so much to be thankful for.
How can you build a routine?
Start by creating some ideas for what you might want to do. Separate these into daily and nightly routines. In the morning, do you want to wake up earlier, or go for a run? At night, do you want to stretch before bed or read a chapter of your book? You will want to start off adding only a few items to your routine, but at least start off with a big list of any potential ideas.
Once you have a list of ideas, choose a few that are really important to you. To start off, maybe only add one or two things to your morning and night routines so you aren’t completely overwhelmed. Figure out how much time each activity will take you so you can plan how much earlier you need to wake up or how much time you need to plan before you go to bed. Maybe your routine is going to take you fifteen minutes, so you shouold plan fifteen minutes extra before bed. Don’t stay up fifteen minutes later just build your routine into the day.
Set your alarm or reminder. When you set your alarm for the morning, make sure that you’re adding time for these new activities in your routine. DONT press the snooze, I repeat DONT press the snooze, or you won’t be able to get everything done. I would even set an alarm at night before bed letting you know it’s time to do your nightly routine. That way you don’t forget until it’s actually time for bed, and at that point you don’t want to do it anymore.
Try out your new routines. Give it at least a week or two befofe you decide to tweek anything. You may not want to get up a little earlier the first week, but once you get into the habit it won’t be too bad. Also, you may want to add soemthing to the routine or take it out because you think it’s not necessary. I suggest waiting the couple weeks to get your new routines a fair try before switching it up.
Give yourself a break. It takes time to set up a new routine and get into the habit of doing it. If you forget the morning routine once, or don’t wake up in time, don’t beat yourself up. You will slowly grow to love and appreicate the change but everything takes time. You must be kind to yiurself and appreciate that you are trying something new.
I wish you the best of luck as you try out a new morning and nightly routine! Let me know in the comments what your routines look like, or what you plan on adding into your routine after reading this!
Good morning! I hope everyone is having an amazing week, and not working too hard;). Did you have Labor Day off, or did you have to go to work/school. Unfortunetly, I had to go to school, and I had a biology test. The good news is that I got to go home for the weekend and I was able to see my family and my pets! It felt amazing to see everyone again, and coming back to school this week I feel so refreshed!
This is the post you’ve all been waiting for: the college bullet journal! I have been waiting to share these spreads with you until I had done a few other tips and tricks posts, but now the time has come. Of course, this is my college bullet journal, but you could use it in high school as well. As you saw in the title, I named this section a of part 3. I have quite a few different spreads, so I will be breaking them up into two blog posts.
#1. Required Textbooks
This is one of my favorite spreads because I have all the books I need for each class all in once place. I can check this spread to make sure I have all the books, see how much I spent, where I bought them, etc. Below are the measurements and background of each summary.
Textbook: 11×2 box, you can write the name of the book, or the ISBN number
Price: 4×2 box, the price you paid including tax
Store book: 3×2, checkmark for a physical book, I would just write the word book. I honestly cannot remember why I wrote store book, but it Is just a box to show if it is a real book
Online book: 3×2, place a checkmark if it is only an online book. Below I have a section for online books that I will expand on
Class: 4×2, what class is that book for?
Paid: 3×2, put a check in the book once you have ordered and paid for the book
Received: 3×2, put a check here once you’ve actually received the book
Where: 5×2, note if you bought the book on Amazon, the college bookstore, or somewhere else
Below is just the total amount spent on all the books combines
Online textbooks section
Textbook: 10×2, just the name of the textbook, or the ISBN
Link: 10×2, either the direct link to the textbook or the site you can find it on
Password: 7×2, just the login password
Username: 8×2, the username for the site, usually your email
Project Planner by The Happy Planner
I just HAD to add in this Happy Planner page, perfect for any type of school project. I personally only use it for my bigger projects, like essays. This really helps me get my thoughts and ideas down on paper before I actually do the project. Sometimes you can have a project that will take a month or longer, so you can write down all the separate due dates from the teacher, or just your personal goals for when to have parts done. You can buy this 40 page pack at Jo-Anns (and other crafts stores) or directly from The Happy Planner wbsite.
In this bullet journal spread, I have all the information I could ever need for each of my classes. Each box goes across the whole page, and is five boxes down. At the corner, I added a little 2×2 box just for some decoration. At the top of each box, I wrote the FULL class name, along with the shortened name and section number. For example, Intro to Cellular Biology can be shortened to BIOl 103-01. In each box, I wrote the professor’s name and what type of class it is (lecture, lab, etc). Then, I have the professor’s email and the location of the class, with building and room number. Lastly, I have the days and times of each class. I made sure to leave extra room in the boxes for extra information you may receive on the first day.
I can’t believe we’ve already made it to September! It seems like just yesterday was March, and we were all in lockdown. Now, we’re getting into corn maze season! If you didn’t know this already, I am so excited for fall because I love all fall activities (except for haunted houses, no way!!). I can’t wait to go through corn mazes, pick apples, and carve pumpkins.
ALSO! I have not been very good about this recently, but I wanted to start getting into the program of providing you all with monthly spreads at the beginning of each month. Today, I am going to share with you my gratitude and expense trackers.
September(October and November) Gratitude Tracker
This gratitude tracker is a new spread that I’ve never tried before, but I think it will be really awesome for my mind to write down one thing I’m thankful for everyday. Being stuck at home during COVID made me really think about everything and everyone that I love in my life. It inspired me to make this spread because we often take so much for granted, and I think taking just a moment each day to think about what and who you love is essential.
I combined the next three months just to save some paper, knowing I can write pretty small. If you prefer to write bigger, feel free to make this spread for only one or two months per page. Basically, all this spread has are the dates of the month, and you write down one thing you’re grateful for next to each number. This can be anything simple, such as your family, to something more specific, like an event that took place during the day.
September Expense Tracker
I love this expense tracker because it highlights so much in just one spread. I started off with a couple doodles at the top. Of course, you can feel free to draw whatever you want. I didn’t have any stencils at the time, so don’t mind my attempt at drawing:). Below my doodles are where I will put my goals for my checking and savings accounts, with a start and end balance. I also have goals for how much money I should spend on needs, wants, and anything in between. I have a section for what I WANT to spend(to fill out at the beginning of the month), and a section for what I ACTUALLY spend(to fill out at the end of the month). Below that is a section for bills, and then I have a tracker for the days I don’t spend any money. Each day is a 2×2 box, and when I don’t spend any money that day, I color in the box. That way at the end of the month I will know how often I spent money. You can also make a goal, such as only spending money 15 days of the month. Lastly, I have a tracker for money spending. In April, I made one of these as well. It has a category for the day you bought the object, and what exactly it was. What store did it come from, what category(food or crafts, for example), and total amount you spent. Next to that is where it gets a little complicated, and of course where I messed up. C and DC are cash and debit card; you just put a check mark on whatever one you used. N and W stand for need and want, which you would also just check off.
I hope you loved these new spreads for September, and are inspired to make them for your bullet journal! Email me or let me know in the comments if there are any specific spreads you would like to see for next month.
Now that you’ve made it to the first week of classes(maybe you’re a little farther in than that), how do you feel? For me, I have done a lot of introductory work and I haven’t been too stressed out about my workload… YET. I’m sure I will be in the future, but for now I wanted to give you an idea on how to handle the first week of classes, so YOU won’t have to worry about stress. My goal is for you to read this post and feel way more prepared to take on the first week of classes!
#1. Give yourself a few extra minutes to walk to class
If you read my last blog post, titled “What to Do Before the First Day of College”, you remember how I recommended walking around campus to each classroom at least once. And if you haven’t read my last post yet, you can read it here! Even if you think you know the campus really well, leave yourself a few extra minutes to get there for at least the first week. You never know if you will have a makeup malfunction before you leave the dorm, get stuck talking to a friend, or lose your way. Worst case scenario, you show up to class a few minutes early, which is much better than a few minutes late. For morning classes, I would recommend getting up a few minutes earlier than you were planning. So if you plan on getting up at 8:10 for an 8:30 class, maybe get up at 8. This allows you to have a few minutes to breathe and wake up before class starts.
#2. Write down ALL assignments
On the first day of class (or maybe even before), you will probably get a syllabus from all of your teachers, which should have all your major assignments on it. These can range anywhere from quizzes to tests to papers. You will want to make sure you have all of these written down in a monthly AND weekly part of your planner. College professors don’t always remind you when you have something to do or when there will be a test, which makes it so important that you have all the dates written down somewhere. You can even create an assignment log in your bullet journal. I will talk more about the spread in a later post, but below I’ve attached a picture of my August and September assignment logs (before I filled them out). You can highlight each class a different color, or highlight based on what type of assignment it is. Whatever way you choose to organize your assignments, it must make sense to you so you will know far in advance when you have something due. If you do not get a syllabus with the dates of all your assignments, make sure you write them down as soon as a teacher announces anything. You will want to start big assignments as soon as possible because they usually take more time than expected For example, a paper might take you more than a few weeks to write, and you should probably start studying for tests at least a week prior.
#3. Go to all the campus activities you can
In the first week, there will be a lot of activities for you to participate in, such as involvement fairs and outside festicals. For me, there were a lot of activities within my hall and a few involvement fairs. Truth be told, with Coronavirus and social distancing/masks, it is even harder to make friends than in past years. Howver, I know colleges are giving their best efforts to make sure you still get a great college experience with great events. While it is so hard to socialize right now, you still need to make the best effort to appreciate the opportunities colleges are giving you to meet new people and do new things. Sometimes you will really not want to go, and that IS totally okay. I don’t want to make it seem like you have to go to any and every event possible. However, if you can make it to just a few things your first week(and beyond), you will most likely find something you want to be involved in. For example, you might make a friend at an outdoor event ora really interesting club at a fair. And yes, it is possible that some of the activities will be a complete bore, but you can just go home after and choose not to attend the same event again.
#4. Make your bed and do a “ten minute tidy”
Every morning, make your bed as SOON as you get up. William McCraven, a retired Navy Admiral Seal, once said, “If you make your bed every morning, you will have accomplished the first task of the day.” I talked about this (and the ten minute tidy) in my post “This Storm.”Making your bed will make you more productive throughout the day, and if you do it right when you wake up, you don’t have to worry about it for the rest of the day. Furthermore, a ten minute tidy is something I do once a day to maintain the cleanliness of my room. It’s exactly what it sounds like: a quick room clean up that takes no more than ten minutes. I just make sure all my notebooks are put away, my clothes are in the laundry, etc. It doesn’t take long and will keep your room from looking like a complete disaster. If you don’t clean your room until it is just a tornado, you will be so overwhelmed. The ten minute tidy will keep you from ever having to feel this way. Also, I would suggest doing a thorough cleaning once a week (I like to do it on Sundays), which includes a little dusting, maybe a quick vaccum if you have one, etc.
#5. Take some self care time
At least once a day, allow yourself at least 10-15 minutes to do something you want to do. During this time, don’t think about anything else; just be in the moment. You can do anything from reading a book to journaling to just sitting by yourself. I know it is hard to find any spare time in college because you always have so much work, events, etc. However, you will stay so much less stressed if you can find just a little bit of time every day to set everything aside and only think about you. If you can wake up fifteen minutes early and do this, that’s great. Otherwise, you can just plan a little bit of time day by day. I would also suggest taking a day or two every week to do a larger self-care activity, such as getting your nails done or doing a craft. This could even be taking a nap. I have a friend who doesn’t do any homework on Wednesdays and makes this her self care day. If you can do that, that’s amazing, but for me personally, it is hard to take a whole day without work. This is why I like to break it up day by day and plan a larger activity for myself on the weekends. If you need some help coming up with self care activities, there is a list below
Self Care Tips
Do your nails
Get your hair done
Write ten things you love
Get a massage
Do your makeup
Go outside and take in the scenery
Drink some water
Write down your favorite quotes
Write down what you’re grateful for
Take a nice drive
Light a candle/essential oils
Get some coffee
Do a good deed
Try something new
Give a loved one a call
#6. Plan out your goals each day
Whether you have a weekly, daily, or hourly planner(or all three), or just make a checklist at the beginning of every day, make sure you prioritize your goals. The first goal can always be making your bed, which means you will ALWAYS accomplish the first goal of the day. From there, I would suggest doing one task in your room every day, which I will include a list of ideas below. A good idea would be to plan out what homework you want to get done that day, or what parts of assignments. Maybe you want to get your essay introduction done or finish studying vocabulary for Spanish. Either way, set SPECIFIC goals that are realistic for that day. For example, you may want to cover one chapter of biology and one lesson in chemistry, but it is probably not realistic to try to read and take notes on five chapters in one day. If you have all your assignments in your planner, like I suggested before, you will always know what’s coming and never have to read five chapters in one day. I would suggest making your to-do list at the beginning of the day, or the night before, then adding to it as you go to class and get more homework. Also, when I get a homework assignment, I always write the day it is due and add it to my to-do lists until that day. Then, I know I should be working on it at least a little bit until the due date. If I finish before then, I can just cross that task off!
Daily task Ideas
Clean out fridge
Bathroom cleanup (may split this with many people, or there may be people that come do it)
Disinfect surfaces (>once/week)
#7. Give a call back home
Let’s face it: being away from home this long can really suck. As much as you are homesick, your family probably misses you just as much. Give a call back home to your mom, who will want to know what you’re doing to keep busy, or to your boyfriend, just to tell him that you love him. A call to your family back home will mean so much to them, and it will also be a little reminder that people are here for you. You may be apart in distance, but your family and friends back home love you just as much as they did before. Anytime you need a little support, give them a call, and they can let you know everything will be okay. Yes, there are people that would argue talking to your family too much will cause more issues, and make you more homesick. Truthfully, I think it is about who you are and how close you are with your family. Calling your parents six times a day may be a little excessive, I don’t think a check-in call once a day is too much. Again, it’s all personal preference. For me, a quick call to my mom or boyfriend once every day or two is a reminder of the support and love I will always have back home.