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The Truth About Living in a Dorm

One of the biggest aspects about coming to college is your living situation. Most freshman live in dorms located in residence halls, like myself. I'll admit that I was actually a little bit excited to live in a dorm room because I was excited to have a space that I could call my own and I was excited to decorate it (who isn't?). 

I had heard stories about living in dorms but didn't want to believe any of them until I experienced them for myself because everyone's college dorm life experience is different. Turns out that the common things I was told about dorm life are true and today I'm going to be sharing those with you. By no means am I trying to scare any of y'all, living in a dorm honestly is not bad at all and it's extremely bearable. You probably won't be in your room all that often either. Aside from sleeping and showering, most of your time will be spent outside of your dorm room.

Keeping Tidy Isn't Easy

I've always considered myself to be a very organized and for the most part a very tide & neat person. My roommate would say the same about herself, too. However, when we got to college, after living in the dorm for only a week, we were shocked at how quickly things became messy and out of place. No matter how hard we try to keep our room tidy, it always ends up a bit messy and we always find ourselves dedicating a portion of our weekends to put things back where they belong. 

With two girls living in such a small space and with all the hair, makeup, clothes, shoes & textbooks and binders; things get pretty messy real fast. I would definitely recommend bringing a small handheld vacuum with you to college. Neither myself or my roommate thought to bring one and found ourselves ordering one off of Amazon a few weeks ago because of the amount of dust and hair that was in our room.

I try to make a habit of cleaning my desk and the sink area at least once a week and I do make my bed daily because I hate to have messy sheets and my pillows thrown all over our floor. Even in doing these things, we still always find sorority shirts scattered around the room, water bottles next to the futon & the occasional piles of glitter that are still leftover from bid day (oops).

Little to no Privacy

For most students, you're going to have a roommate living in your dorm room with you. Only in rare situations will you have an entire dorm room to yourself. When you live with a roommate you aren't going to have much alone time. Sure you might have some while she's in classes but for the most part, you likely won't be alone in your room as often as you're going to wish you were. 

I am someone who values their alone time and almost relies on alone time to decompress and just be alone. My roommates class schedules differ slightly so I'm typically able to find small chunks of time where I can FaceTime friends, call my family back home or get some quiet studying or blog work done. 

Sure you don't have to be alone to take phone calls or FaceTime your friends and if your roommate is ok with that then 100% go for it. My roommate and I don't mind each other doing those things with the other in the room but typically whenever we need to make a call or take a call, we step out in the hallway just as a sign of respect because we don't want to bother them while they're studying or watching TV.

Sickness Spreads SO Fast

Living in such tight quarters when one person gets sick, you can almost expect that you'll catch it next. My best advice to avoid catching any sickness is to do laundry often (clothes, towels & your bedsheets), disinfect the door handles and sick area often & take your vitamins and drink lots of water.

If you do catch a bug, don't push yourself because that's just going to make it worse. Take it easy, gets as much sleep as possible, drink lots of water & make sure you're fueling your body with the right nutrients it needs to heal itself.

Your Sleep Schedule is Likely Going to Be Different Each Night

This one may vary depending on the individual but no matter how hard I try to go to bed around the same time each night, I just can't do it. With varying amounts of homework each night and sorority events scattered throughout the week I don't think I've gone to bed at the same time more than two nights in a row.

On top of your own schedule, your roommates schedule is likely going to be completely different. Being in two different sororities, my roommate and I each have chapter on different nights, meetings on different nights and functions on different nights. Sure you can always go to bed before your roommate gets home but if you're a light sleeper like me, you're just going to wake up when you hear them come in the room. Let's just say that you're going to take a lot of naps in college, and that's coming from someone who never took naps before college.

Little to No Storage 

I'm sure I'm not the first person to tell you but there's is not a lot of storage in your dorm room. Even if you bring storage bins & shelves, you're probably not going to have room for those either. I had originally brought a 3 drawer storage container that I had planned on keeping in my room to help keep my clothes organized but when I got here on move-in day I realized that I had no room for that big storage container. I've made do with the space I have but there definitely is not as much storage as I imagined nor would I have liked to have.

Crazy Temperatures

Obviously going to school in South Carolina can produce high humidity and ridiculously hot temperatures which in turn can create some pretty extreme temperatures in your dorm room. We have a humidifier in our room which has greatly happened because our room no longer feels sticky. We also have an air purifier which pulls all the dirt and dust out of the air which is nice because I honestly think it's saved us from getting super sick this semester! Both of these things are definitely worth the investment if you ask me.

Late Night Fire Drills

Thankfully, this hasn't happened in my residence hall (knock on wood) but your likely going to have a fire drill that goes off in the middle of the night or while you're busy doing something. Obviously you can't stay in your room for safety purposes so you'll have to drag yourself out of bed to evacuate the building. Everyone else will be frustrated too so just know you're not alone in that boat.


Roommates can be a tough one. If you're like me, you'll end up with a great roommate but even if this is the case, it's still a bit of a leaning curve to figure out just exactly how to live with another person in such close proximity. My roommate is one of my best friends here at USC so thankfully we haven't had any major disagreements but it definitely took some time to get used to sharing the room with another person. 

One of the common misconceptions about college roommates, in my opinion, is that you're going to be/have to be best friends with them. This is definitely not true. You do not have to spend every waking hour with your roommate and it's ok to do things without them. My roommate and I hang out often and we do lots of things together but there are times when I decide to grab dinner with some sorority sisters instead and that's totally ok. It's good to branch out and make new friends beyond those who you live with because you're likely not going to be living with the same roommate next year. My roommate and I both pledged different sororities which is nice because we both have our own groups of friends but we also have friends within each other's chapters. On the other hand, I wouldn't suggest completely ignoring your roommate either. You're going to live with this person for almost 10 months so you might as well at least try to make friends with them. In the event that something would happen, such as you getting sick, it will be nice to have them there to comfort you and help you it if you were to need anything.

What has living in a dorm taught you?


College Skin Care Routine

Skin care has always been something that's important to me and since moving into college, it's been an essential part of my daily routines. I always feel more confident when I have a clear complexion so  I'm very adamant about my skin care routine and make sure that I never skip a day or any step in my routine. 

I try to use as little products as necessary because I don't like to have a lot of different products each with different formula's going on my skin. A little goes a long way and this is definitely true when it comes to my skin care routine. 

My skin care routine differs slightly between the morning & at night; at night I do a bit of a deeper clean and I also put on my acne medicine that my dermatologist has me using.

Morning Routine

Pretty much as soon as I wake up I head straight over to the skin (perks of having one in our room!) and begin my skin care routine. I wash my face with CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser and usually will put one pump of this soap into my hands and then wash my face. I don't use my Clarisonic in the mornings because I don't have any makeup that I'm trying to remove since it had been removed the night before. After I wash my face, I pat my face dry and then apply my Neutrogena Hydro-Boost moisturizer all over my face. 


Night Routine

Before I shower at night I use my Neutrogena Makeup Remover wipes to take off all of my makeup. Most days I don't wear a full face of makeup which is nice because it doesn't take me super long to do this. After I remove my makeup, I use my Clarisonic Mia 2 to wash my face. I use one pump of the same soap that I use in the morning and pump this right onto my Clarisonic and then proceed to wash my face. Once my Clarisonic is done, I will pat my face dry and typically will jump in the shower. Then later in the night, right before I go to bed I apply my acne medicine that my dermatologist has me using all over my face and hop in bed!


What does your skin care routine look like?


My College Daily Routines

Happy Monday! I'm super excited to share today's post with y'all as it's something I really enjoying reading on other blogs, too. I've been in college for 3 months and think I've finally established my daily routines. Obviously these routines will change next semester with a new set of classes but for now, I've got my routines that work with my current class schedule. 

Unlike high school, in college your routine is likely going to be different each day of the week. The only two days that I have the same routine for are Tuesday's & Thursday's. Monday's & Wednesday's are pretty similar however I have Chapter meetings every Monday night and each Wednesday afternoon I have a small section meeting of my history class. I have three classes on Monday's & Wednesday's, two classes on Tuesday's & Thursday's and two classes on Friday's. 

As someone who functions better with a set routine, settling into college life was difficult for me but I've finally come to terms that each day is going to be different. Being involved in Greek life also has lots of various meetings, workshops and functions that pop up through the weeks too so sometimes I have additional things to do that aren't listed on the routines below. I also don't always follow these routines exactly, cough cough, like today when I woke up at 9:40am and realized I had a 10:05 that was cross-campus that I literally had to run to make it to in time. Don't worry, I made it, but moral of the story here is 1) Don't hit snooze and 2) Routines aren't always followed.

What do your daily routines look like?


My Current Playlist

If you've been reading Northern Prepster for a while, than you probably know how much I love my Spotify. I was gifted Spotify Premium for Christmas last year and it was hands down one of my favorite, and most used, Christmas gifts of the year.

I am constantly making new playlists and almost always have Spotify playing in our dorm room (seriously, ask my roommate). I always have a playlist filled with my current favorite songs which is constantly changing with songs being added or taken off the playlist. I'm also super excited to make my Christmas playlist but I think I need to wait a bit longer before I do that. I've linked my current favorite playlist below for y'all to listen to! You can also browse my other playlist if your curious as to what else I listen to!

What's on your current playlist?


Sorority Photo Update

As I'm sure many of y'all know by now, I went through sorority recruitment here at Carolina back in August and ended up receiving a bid from Delta Zeta! From the moment I stepped inside the ΔΖ house I knew that it was a place that I could see myself and it just so ended up that ΔΖ became my new home away from home!

My mom was a Delta Zeta when she was in college and while I had always thought that it would be cool to be sisters with my mom, I told herself that I wasn't going to let my mom's affiliation to the chapter affect or influence my decisions during recruitment. When I received my shirt on bid day and read the words "Delta Zeta" I cried and ran home to my new sisters and once I was settled into the crowd with all my other ΔΖ sisters I remember texting my mom and saying "Hi sister!"

Recruitment was a long and extremely tiring process but it was so worth it! I'll likely write more about the recruitment process over the summer as we grow nearer to recruitment so if you're curious about that definitely let me know! I have a ton of photos from my first months as a Delta Zeta so today I'm going to be sharing some with y'all because I know that I always love to see photos from other people's sororities!

Bid Day

Bid day, best day, am I right? Bid day at Carolina is so, so much fun and I would definitely go back and do it all over again. Bid day happens in our basketball arena and a couple of groups of PNM's are taken inside at a time and we all stand in a circle with our backs towards each other and we put our hands behind our backs and our pi chi's go around and put the shirt of our future chapter's in our hands. Once everyone has a shirt, they count down from 10 and then everyone gets to unwrap their shirt, throw it on and run home to their new sisters! 

I don't think I have been as nervous as I was when I had that shirt in my hands. When I saw that my shirt said Delta Zeta I cried and it turned out that one of my good friends in my pi chi group also went ΔΖ so we ran home together! Once we found ΔΖ in the arena our chapter president ran out and gave us a huge hug and helped us find our bid day buddies!

After everyone is with their new chapter each sorority heads back to their house and takes pictures and then each chapter has a different bid day party which is super fun. 

My roommate Sophie received a bid from Alpha Gamma Delta and once we finally made it home that night we took the photo below and it's probably one of our favorite photos we've taken together!

Throw what you know in Asheville, North Carolina

When hurricane Irma was predicted to hit Columbia, classes got cancelled for an upcoming Monday and since one of my suite mates lives up in Asheville, North Carolina, we headed up there for the weekend because Columbia was supposed to get hit pretty hard. Turns out that all Columbia really had was a bit of wind and lots of rain but it was still nice to take a weekend road trip someplace new!

In Asheville we drove up the Blue Ridge Parkway which was super pretty and we also stopped to hike up Frying Pan Tower which was definitely worth it for the views but since I'm not a fan of heights by any means, being on a metal tower up this high definitely freaked me out. My suite mate Peyton snapped this photo of me "throwing what I know" once we got to the top of the tower and I love it! 

Fall Band: 70's Themed

Most sororities here at Carolina have Fall Band as their function. Fall Band for us this year was 70's themed which was fun but it was definitely a struggle trying to pull together some 70's styled clothing pieces. I took my roommate Sophie as my date and we had a lot of fun. Our function was at Music Farm which is a super cool venue in the Vista here in Columbia. 

ΔΖ Christmas

The way that Delta Zeta does big/little reveal here at Carolina is that we have 2 nights of gifts (ΔΖ Christmas) and then we have reveal. My big definitely spoiled me but I am very appreciative for all the sweet canvases and t-shirts and other goodies that she got me! I'm already super excited to take a little next year and have already started thinking of gift ideas!

Big Little Reveal

Aside from bid day, big little reveal is definitely another fun day for sororities! The way big little reveal works for us is that you typically will get your reveal costume on the second night of ΔΖ Christmas and then once you get to the house on reveal night you'll pick up a piece of wrapping paper that will match the giant box that your big is hiding in. Once everyone has their paper scrap everyone runs out back and finds the box that matches their wrapping paper and your big will pop out!

I love my family so, so much. I'm a twin which is so fun! On the second night of gifts my twin and I were both told to pick-up our gifts at the same time because our big had set them up next to each other with a sign that said "Riley & Lynn, surprise you're twins!"

My twin, Lynn and I get along extremely well and actually live about an hour and half apart in Ohio so road trips over Christmas and summer break are definitely in our futures.  My big, Meghan is the sweetest and I love her to pieces. You'll definitely be seeing lots of pictures of my fam throughout the years so get excited about that!

Parent's Weekend

Parent's Weekend was super fun because my dad was able to rearrange his work schedule so that he could come down and spend the weekend with me! Delta Zeta has an open house on Friday afternoon so my dad was able to go on a tour of the house which was super fun and I'm glad he got to learn more about my chapter! ΔΖ also hosted a low country boil Friday night which was fun because my dad got to meet some of my friends as well as my twin and my big! Of course I made him take a picture with me by the banner because it was too cute not to!

Second Function: You Are What You Netflix

Our second function was on Friday October 13th and the theme was you are what your Netflix which basically meant dress up as your favorite Netflix show characters. My best friend Katie's fall break happened to fall this weekend so she was able to stop by Columbia and be the Serena to my Blair at my function! It was so much fun getting to spend some time with Katie and being able to introduce her to my friends and show her the ΔΖ house!


As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, my mom was a Delta Zeta which meant that she was allowed to come to initiation and take part in my initiation process. I'm so glad that my mom got to take part in this and it was nice to get to spend the weekend with her and introduce her to my twin & my big, too! I shared this photo below on my personal Instagram and captioned it "walked into the house as her daughter, walked out of the house as her daughter AND her sister." 

Throw what you know in Columbia, South Carolina

The same weekend that Katie came to my function, we also ventured downtown to Soda City (which you can read all about HERE) and on our way home we stopped at the State House to take some pictures. Katie snapped this photo of me throwing what I know and I'm really happy with how it turned out!

With semi-formal coming up and various other events, definitely be on the lookout for another photo update in the near future!


Your Guide to: Fall Shoes

As much as I love my Jack Rogers, I also have a love for my riding boots, my booties & my cute pairs of flats. I've always loved the fall, everything from the weather turning colder to the cute and cozy outfits. I love being able to throw on a pair of jeans, a flannel with a vest & my riding boots and being in South Carolina, I've had to wait a bit for the weather to allow me to do that. 

With it finally starting to cool down here in Columbia, you can bet that my boots will be making their debut across campus here in the next several weeks as well as at home over Thanksgiving Break. I have my heeled booties and my brown riding boots down here at school with me and after Thanksgiving Break I'll be bringing down my over the knee boots as well. 

I know that shopping for boots and just fall shoes in general can be stressful, or maybe it's just me, but I went ahead and gathered up my favorite picks for this season. I linked 3 pairs of riding boots, 3 pairs of booties and 3 pairs of over the knee boots in the first photo and then in the second picture I've linked 6 pairs of flats and 3 pairs of slip-on sneakers. Y'all if you don't own a pair of slip-on sneakers do yourself a favor and purchase yourself a pair because not only are they super cute but they are so comfortable. Definitely worth the investment if you ask me!

first row: one // two // three
second row: one // two // three
third row: one // two // three

first row: one // two // three
second row: one // two // three
third row: one // two // three

What are your favorite shoes to wearing during the fall?


Saturday's in South Carolina

Having grown up in the shadows of The Ohio State University, up until I moved to Carolina, the only football I've ever experienced is Big Ten football. When I was looking at colleges, one thing I knew I wanted was an SEC school because I wanted to experience football Saturday's differently than I had growing up. 

Saturday's in South Carolina are definitely not like Saturday's back home in Ohio. Rather than throwing on jeans and an Ohio State t-shirt, I find myself wearing sundresses and Jack Rogers to football games which I know might not be for some people but for me, I love getting dressed up for game days. During the week you can almost always find me in running shorts and an oversized ΔΖ shirt so it's fun to get dressed up on the weekends. There is definitely no shortage of photos taken on game days and today I'm sharing some photos from game days from earlier in the season.

Have you ever been to an SEC football game?


Weekend Road Trips

This past weekend I spent the weekend in Clemson & Greenville, South Carolina with Katie from Chic in Carolina which was much needed and so fun! Clemson is two and half hours away and even though I don't have my car with me down here at Carolina, Katie was super sweet and came over to pick me up Friday after her classes finished. We made it back to Clemson around 9pm and then we spent most of the night walking around campus and chatting with her big who is the absolute sweetest! 

Saturday morning we woke up around 9am and got ready and then headed up to Greenville, South Carolina to spend the day shopping and taking pictures! We stopped in Travelers Rest, South Carolina where we grabbed brunch at Tandem which had the yummiest crepes and the most photogenic lattes!

After brunch we drove into Greenville and spent a couple hours walking downtown and shopping as well as taking some pictures that you'll see on my blog later next week! We stopped into Lululemon, The Pink Bee, Anthropologie and a couple of other stores. I picked up THIS active wear jacket from Vineyard Vines at The Pink Bee and wow I'm obsessed! 

After we finished up shopping we grabbed some cupcakes and I also got an iced coffee from The Chocolate Moose Bakery & Cafe which was the perfect afternoon treat! After this we shoot some outfit pictures and then ventured back to Clemson. We spent the rest of the night shooting a couple of more outfits and then we walked into downtown Clemson where we had pizza for dinner and then we grabbed some ice cream before heading back to Katie's dorm where we just hung out for the rest of the night!

Have you ever been to Greenville?