A City Summer

New York City.

The city where dreams come true – or in my case, where dreams become realized.

This summer has awakened me emotionally, culturally and spiritually. I realized that I unfortunately have no idea what kind of crazy path this universe might take me on and that the only right way to live is to enjoy every single small step along the way.

It all started in May when I journeyed to the city for an interview at Allure Marketing which ended up being a disaster (Read about it here) . Shortly after, a series of events led me to a job at The Wedding Salon, and eventually to a full-time paid internship at the Robin Hood Foundation. What started as a weekend trip to NYC for one job interview resulted in a summer-long ordeal that led to new friendships and experiences I never dreamed I’d have.

I drank a Manhattan while flirting with a devilishly handsome civil engineer from Cyprus at a chic rooftop bar in the Meatpacking District. A friend and I walked through MoMa and commented on the abstract modern art. I went thrift shopping in Brooklyn like a real hipster. And I went to a gay bar and a penthouse apartment party all in the same night.  I will never EVER forget these memories and the people who made them special.

I don’t know if I’ll end up living here some day, but I do know that this city hasn’t seen the last of me.

Now enjoy my top 5 favorite summer memories!

A day at MoMa

 

Max Brenner chocolate feast with my best friend.
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A visit from family for the 4th of July

 

My first Yankee game!

 

A night out at Le Bain, a rooftop bar and lounge.

 

My first time at a gay bar with some of the best people you’ll ever meet.

 

 

The final supper … or should I say brunch … at The Smith

All the Small Things that Today’s Kids will Never Know

Growing up in the early 2000’s with three older sisters who instilled in me the values of the 90s was a magical experience. I can’t imagine a childhood without these insanely awesome experiences that kids these days will never have the pleasure of knowing. Warning: Content may evoke extreme feelings of nostalgia.

Feeling so cool when your family finally got a DVD player

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AOL Instant Messenger was your main method of communication

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TRL, Room Raiders and other MTV classics were your go-to after school shows

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Webkinz and Neopets care was a seriously important part of the day

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A CD Collection to be proud of

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Myspace was the only “social media” you had

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Actually calling your friends on the phone

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Yoyos were the original fidget spinner

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Hey Arnold was your favorite cartoon

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All That made you laugh so hard that you’d spit out your pizza bagels.

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Being horrifyingly awkward but owning it

1910062_101492473197674_5296777_n(throwback to middle school with Shelby )

A Realistic Guide for Penn State Freshman

As I prepare to enter my junior year at Penn State, I think back to the feelings I had during the summer before I started college. I was really nervous that I wouldn’t know what to do or how to make friends at a HUGE school and looked everywhere I could to get the insider tips on surviving my freshman year. Most of the advice I came across was generic and largely consisted of things I already knew.

I’m sharing my best advice on freshman life, in an attempt to provide some sort of peace of mind to freshman who’ll be starting their first semester of college at Penn State (the school I have come to know and love) this fall.

Tip #1: Live in East Halls and if you can’t live there, make friends who live there

East Residence Halls are the powerhouse of all freshman activity. I know that they are pretty much the shittiest dorms on campus, but it’s a sacrifice worth making because you end up finding friends who stay with you throughout college and get a chance to meet a bunch of other people who are in the same boat as you. Some of my best freshman memories came from east hall dorm room pregames and being able to walk across the hall anytime I needed to ask a friend for outfit or homework advice.

Here’s me and one of my best friends , Andrea, who I’m living with this year and met on my floor in Pennypacker freshman year.

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Tip #2: Don’t be afraid to venture out alone and find your tribe

This is probably the most important piece of advice I could give to a freshman. Instead of just going along with what it seems like you SHOULD be doing and venture towards clubs or groups that actually do things YOU like. I felt really pressured to join Greek life as a freshman, but instead I went to a snowboarding club meeting alone, where I ended up making a ton of friends who I’m most close with to this day. Sometimes I was really nervous and didn’t know a lot of people but I put myself out there and it ended up paying off. And side note: I joined a sorority this year and they aren’t really that great in my opinion.

Here are some awesome snowboard club homies that I mentioned:

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Tip #3: Get a campus gym membership because drinking makes you fat

First of all there’s nothing wrong with being fat but if you’re like me and you like to nap and watch Netflix often, the freshman lifestyle might result in a bit of a weight gain. If you’re drinking every weekend (which you probably will be LBH) you WILL gain a few pounds. Curb that weight gain by at least making an attempt to go to the gym. Rec Hall is my personal favorite but the new rock wall at the IM building should be super cool as well.

Tip #4: Keep a supply of Sudafed, Tylenol and tissues at all times

As a freshman you will get sick all the time. Even though Penn State is huge, sickness spreads so easily on campus. I can’t even remember how many times I got sick as a freshman. And unlike high school, you can’t just stay home sick and have mommy take care of you. That’s why I suggest Sudafed (for a decongestant and a burst of energy), Tylenol (for headache and pain relief) and tissues (for all the tears you’ll cry because you failed your exam and also so you can blow your nose).

 

 

 

 

Tip #5: (For Girls) Make sure you bring some shitty hoodies you don’t mind losing and heels you don’t mind getting dirty

You will be going to house parties, apartment parties, frat parties, etc … and you will end up losing the jacket you wear there and spill a drink or have a drink spilled on your shoes. For night parties you should have a go to pair of heeled sandals and boots and for daylongs a pair of old converse or timberland boots. It seems like a sort of “juice” accumulates on the floor of any party you go to, especially in the winter when it snows.

See these examples:

Heeled Sandals HERE

Over the knee Boots HERE

Tip #6: Just go to class

When you’re a freshman, most of your classes will be big and mostly easy. It’s going to take a bit of adjustment to get used to sitting in the Forum building with a class of 200 kids, but you’ll get the hang of it. If you skip those classes, you are screwing yourself over. You are paying for this shit, so go to class, even if it’s just to nap at the back of the room. Also if you don’t pay attention in the basic classes for your major, you might end up realizing you hate it further down the line and by then it’ll be too late to switch majors.

 

Tip #7: Get used to guys (or girls) saying they “don’t want a relationship right now”

I don’t know if this is just a thing at Penn State or if it’s like this at Big 10 schools all over the country, but it seems like most relationships on campus aren’t serious. Penn State has a hookup culture and that’s that. If you get attached easily (like me) try to be careful about who you trust and don’t let anyone take advantage of you. If you’re a guy or girl who loves to be sexually adventurous, then you will do just fine. Stay single and have a good time, and if the right guy or girl comes along, then so be it.

 

Tip #8: When you party, don’t have more than 3 drinks in an hour, especially in the first few weeks

I have heard A LOT of stories about freshman drinking nightmares. I even had an experience of my own where I woke up in my  dorm one morning, covered in vomit debris only to find my two friends asleep on the floor because they had to bring my blacked out ass home from a horrible frat that I will not mention where I drank too much to impress a horrible frat boy who I also will not mention. Moral of the story is: don’t drink more than 2 or 3 drinks per hour because you will blackout and do something stupid or get arrested or die.

Tip #9: Write everything down in a planner

When you first get your class syllabuses go through and write down all the due dates and exams and what not in a planner or notebook. In college, your professors won’t always announce things or remind you so it helps to be self-sufficient.

See THIS ARTICLE  for what planners and agendas are the best for college life

 

Tip #10: Put down your phone and make friends with everyone

When I was a freshman, I made a lot of friends by just talking to people in my classes and introducing myself to new people at parties. Don’t bury your face into your phone and pretend to be busy, because you’ll never meet people like that. I know this might be really hard for the more shy people but if you never go out of your comfort zone in life, you’ll never get anywhere.

Here are some conversation starters:

Waiting for class to start: You could say “Hey have you heard anything about this professor?” or “How do you think the exams are going to be in here this semester?”

At a pregame: Ask if someone wants to take a shot with you and start a convo.

At a party: Ask if someone is good at beer pong and see if they wanna jump in on the next game.

At a club meeting: Ask one of the current members why they joined and what they like about it.

 

I hope that these tips were helpful and make you feel a little bit better about the upcoming semester. You aren’t the only nervous one and you will be fine. If things get overwhelming just remember that at Penn State we work hard and play hard and we’re all family here. WE ARE (sorry I had to).

 

 

Early Fall 2017 Must-Haves

Even though it’s still only the middle of summer, I’ve been thinking a lot about what clothing items I should start shopping for so that I’m ready for the upcoming semester at college. I’ve set out to find the styles that are expected to be HOT this fall, without the designer price. These affordable and fabulous pieces were chosen based on some of Harper’s Bazaar’s Top 14 Trends from the Fall 2017 Runways (I’ve also added my personal picks towards the end).

 

Plaid & Check

Frayed Plaid Shirt $38.00

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Checkered Floral Mini Dress $49.90

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Checkered Shift Dress $49

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Couch Floral

Floral Lace-Up Flounce Top $12.53

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Grey Floral Print Dress $62

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Black Multi Floral Print Mesh Blouse $52

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Denim

High Waist Denim Skirt $17.90

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Denim Day Dress $36

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Embroidered Denim Jacket $69.90

P.S. I own this one and it’s my favorite piece of clothing

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Sparkly & Silver

Silver Athleisure Skirt $15.90

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Shimmery Mini Dress $22.90

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Silver Windbreaker $29.90

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Bright Red

Red Open-Back Sweater $22

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Red Ribbed Bodysuit $12.90

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Red Tie-Front Skater Dress $54

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Daytime Lingerie

Long Lace Bralette $22

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Black Lace Bodysuit $37

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Embroidered Mesh Bodysuit $25.90

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Band Tees & Street Style (My Top Pick)

Tie-Dye Oversized Hoodie $39.90

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Hendrix Band Tee $17.90

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Def Leppard Tee $22.90

I own this and it’s really comfy and the tie dye looks great

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Be on the look out for fall shoe trends … COMING SOON!

 

 

 

 

An Intern’s Life (As Told by Spongebob)

When I hear my alarm go off at the crack of dawn:

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Inhaling my Starbucks coffee and muffin:

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Me on the first day of work:

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Eating lunch alone on the first day:

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When I finally make friends with the other interns and decide to go out on a work night:

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Coming into work the next day like … :

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How it feels when I fuck up:

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Also how it feels when I don’t fuck up and my boss says “good job” :

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When I get home from work and all I have the energy to do is eat and sleep:

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On the last day of your internship when you realize you’re actually sad that you have to leave the all people you’ve been working with all summer:

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Homelessness: You SHOULD Care

People (especially millennials) seem to care more about helping homeless animals than they do about helping homeless HUMANS!


No matter where you live in the United States, you’ve probably run into a homeless person or seen the effects of homelessness in some way. Recently during a conversation with my mom, I had a revaluation about how incredibly sad it is that there are people out there who have no one and nothing to turn to when society chews them up and spits them out.

It seems to have become increasingly more common for people to ignore the homeless. A lot of people think that those who are homeless chose to be homeless but that stereotype is fundamentally wrong.

Did you know:

  • 25% suffer from an untreated mental illness
  • 25% are children
  • 44% did paid work during the past month
  • 40% are veterans
  • 46% are domestically abused
  • 36% are families with children

Just let those numbers sink in for a second.

The path to homelessness isn’t as far-out as many people might assume. Think about what it would be like to lose your home through eviction, lose your job and eventually lose your financial independence. With the recent cuts to the budget of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban development, evictions rates are increasing and the lack of affordable housing is creating a crisis.

Imagine what it would be like to be completely alone, without any family or loved ones. For a long time, I never understood this concept because I was lucky enough to have grown up in an extremely strong and supportive family environment. After moving to New York City for the summer, I started to see what homelessness really looks like on a daily basis. Everyday on my way to work, I see homeless men, women and children and it makes me feel like shit. It makes me want to pull out all the cash in my pocket and hand it to them.

I know that some people will never care about the homeless or feel any empathy whatsoever towards those in need, but I also know that there are some amazing organizations out there that are working to fight homelessness.  For example, the organization that I recently started interning with is called Robin Hood and they have helped literally millions of people in New York City who are affected by poverty and homelessness.

Here are some other great organizations that work to help the homeless:

Find local charities and learn about more ways to help fight homelessness HERE

Even if you only give one dollar, that dollar could meet up with some other peoples’ dollars and they could throw a party to help end homelessness in America.

 

Sources:
(National Alliance to End Homelessness)
(National Coalition on the Homeless)

 

My New Love Affair

Don’t worry boys, this doesn’t mean I’m off the market. I’m just starting a new love affair with MYSELF.

I spent my sophomore year of college wasting time with guys who took my caring nature for granted. Instead of doing things that were good for ME, I was always putting other people first and never having faith in myself. This summer I’ve vowing to spend time loving myself and doing things that make me happy in both mind, body and spirit.

Here’s how:

Spending more money on MYSELF

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Workin on my fitness

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Demanding the respect I deserve

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Celebrating my small accomplishments

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Having a kick-ass cheat meal on the weekend

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Appreciating the important people in my life

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Now go out there and start a love affair with yourself!