Survive and Thrive for Spring Semester

Second semester is about to begin at my high school, and as a senior I know it can be hard to get the motivation to keep going for the rest of the year. Whether you’re on block scheduling — starting new classes — or traditional scheduling — trying to power through the same ones you’ve been in since August or September, it can be a hard time. To help you through the spring semester, I have a few tips that will hopefully help.

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Happy New Year, Happy Graduation: Tips to prepare for college

Happy New Year, Everyone!

For me, 2017 is the epitome of a new year and a new beginning. Come June, I will have graduated high school; come August I will be stepping onto campus as a freshman at Syracuse University.

Many members of the Class of 2017 are in my same position at various schools across the nation. How can you take advantage of every opportunity this year to make your freshman year your best? I’ve got a few tips.

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Take advantage of social media.

Once accepted into the college of your dreams, you usually are given the option of joining the official class of 2021 Facebook page for your school. I strongly recommend joining this. If you don’t have a Facebook, make one. There are often unofficial Facebook pages too that help you to meet people and find a roommate.

For Syracuse, these Facebook pages acted as avenues to further connect with future classmates. We exchange usernames for other social media platforms, and post bios hoping to find a roommate. Multiple class of 2021 Groupme group chats were created. From those groups, group chats in Groupme were created for the individual colleges. As a broadcast and digital journalism major, I joined the Newhouse group chat.

Through the facebook group and the Newhouse Groupme, I’ve been able to connect with future classmates, find friends, and search for a roommate. We even use Houseparty to video chat as a group.

Figure out the cost of attendance with financial aid and make a budget.

Getting into Syracuse University was a dream come true and a financial wake up call. My family and I factored in my financial aid and determined the actual cost of attendance for my next four years. Each school does things differently, but Syracuse made things simple and outlined the estimated cost of everything for each year I will be attending.

The next step I suggest is making a budget to save and avoid student loans as much as possible. I use the app, Mint to keep track of my spending. It connects to your bank account and I’m confident in it’s safety. Here’s an example of my budget that’s helping me to prepare for next year when I don’t have my parents to pay for everything.

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The first two categories are pretty self explanatory. For me, personal care — the third category — includes everything from makeup to medication.

Uncategorized are my non-necessity purchases. SU apparel, clothes, even atm withdrawals fall under this category.

Be independent.

Now is the time to start doing things for yourself as if you’re already in college. It’s better to start now when you have your family to fall back on when necessary than next year when they’re not there. Do your own laundry, schedule your own appointments, do all the adult things your mom or dad used to do for you.

Getting a head start in preparing for college can help distract you from the side effects of senioritis and help you to get ready for the next chapter in your life. Let me know in the comments what you think of these tips and if you have any to add!

XOXO Anna

5 Christmas Songs to Kick off the Holidays

Thanksgiving has passed and holiday shopping is in full swing. Black Friday and Small Business Saturday are complete and Cyber Monday is right around the corner. The other thing this means resumes in only one day; it goes so fast.

Perk up, the time for Christmas music has officially begun! Here are 5 of my favorite Christmas songs to get into the holiday spirit.

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4 Quotes to Turn a Bad Week Great

Happy Friday!

Even though it is the glorious last day of the week we’ve all been waiting for, sometimes you just need a pick-me-up. Maybe it’s been a hard week or there have been some disappointments.

Never fear! More Than Prep in Your Step is here to inspire with 4 quotes to keep you going after a long/bad week.

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Did they work? What’s your favorite quote? Comment below!

XOXO Anna

Beat the Bug this Flu season

I know, it’s not the most exciting topic, but being sick — especially with the stomach bug or flu — is 100% less exciting. So how can you beat the bug this season?

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Get a Flu Shot

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Let’s start with the basics; get a flu shot. Believe me when I say I know it’s not the number thing on your to-do list. Some are afraid of shots, others are like me and aren’t totally confident in the flu shot.

If you fall into the former category, follow these tricks to make it through.

  1. Look away when the nurse or doctor is preparing and giving the shot
  2. Think of something else
  3. If the pain is the biggest fear factor for you, poke the site of the shot with your nails first to numb the area (I know it sounds a little weird, but it works)

Wash your Hands. A lot. Even When you Don’t Think you Need to

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Before you eat, wash your hands. After you get home from school, wash your hands. Before you touch your eyes, nose, or mouth, wash your hands. Do you get the point yet? This is one of your best defenses against all sorts of disease causing germs, especially when you’re spending so much time in the disease filled prison we call high school.

And if soap and water isn’t feasible (or you go to a school like mine where germ spraying hand dryers are the only option) use hand sanitizer instead of, or in addition to soap and water.

Try to be Healthy in General

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Eat your fruits and vegetables, (try to) get enough sleep, and live a healthy life.

To the coughers and sneezers out there: 

If you have a cough or need to sneeze, DO IT INTO YOUR ELBOW! Do you really want your friends, family, and peers to get your cough or cold? Hopefully you answered no to that question.

If you really are sick, try to stay home. I know in high school, this isn’t always possible so if you must go to school while sick the best thing you can do to protect others is to wash your own hands often and COUGH OR SNEEZE INTO YOUR ELBOW, NOT YOUR HAND OR THE AIR.

Do you have any other tips to share? Comment them below!

XOXO Anna

High School Hot Topic: 5 Songs to Add to Your November Playlist

As a high school student, music is a must. From the morning and afternoon commute to working independently in class, I definitely couldn’t have survived the last three years or this year — my senior year without it.

When constantly listening to music, it’s easy for songs to get old so here are five new songs to add to your playlist this month.

  1. She Sets the City on Fire – Gavin DeGraw

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    Photo from Flickr
  2. Shout Out to My Ex – Little Mix

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    Photo from Flickr
  3. Setting Fires – The Chainsmokers

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    Photo from Wikimedia Commons
  4. Don’t Wanna Know – Maroon 5

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    Photo from Flickr
  5. Body Say – Demi Lovato

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    Photo from Flickr

Have any songs you think are must-haves for any November playlist? Drop ’em in the comments below! Happy listening!

XOXO Anna