Sophia: The Best Houseplants for BU Dorms

Unless you’ve got a service animal, BU dorms aren’t particularly pet friendly. While the idea of sneaking your dog to school might seem fun in practice in reality there aren’t a lot of options for the lonely college student. When the animal kingdom is out of reach however, look no further than the world of plants! The right houseplant can freshen the air in your room, give you something to care for, and of course, looks great! Whether you go full Poison Ivy, or are just looking for something small to start your new indoor garden, here are some of the best plants for BU dorms. 

1. Succulents and cacti

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Coming in an astounding variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, succulents are a great first plant. They’re nearly impossible to kill. Succulents require little water, with most varieties only needing to be lightly watered once a week, and even with low light will be able to hang on through the Boston winter. Since you can find many very small succulents for very cheap it can be fun to get a few to fill a cute pot, or line up along the windowsill. Just beware if you go for one of the spikier varieties of cacti!

2. Pothos Ivy

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If you want more of a classic leafy green, pothos is a great hardy option. Pothos doesn’t require a lot of light, and so can survive in even the dimmest Warren dorm room. As for water, pothos should be watered whenever the soil in it’s pot fully dries out, in my experience every three days or so. As an ivy, pothos plants can have very cool tendrils grow out from them, so place it on a high shelf to really get that jungle vibe!

3. Snake plants

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If you’re going for height in your home garden, look no further than the Snake plant! Snake plants grow up rather than out, with long green leaves. With a reputation for being hardy, Snake plants can survive in low light all throughout the coldest Boston winter. Much like pothos, Snake plants should only be watered after their soil has fully dried out, about every three to four days depending on the size of your plant. While you can get smaller started Snakes, I recommend going with a slightly taller, more mature plant, if you have the room. 

4. Spider plants

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Picture this, you have a plant, wow, amazing! Your plant makes you the coolest on your floor, but wait! Now all your friends want plants too! Enter the Spider plant. Spider plants often start sprouting smaller spider plants you can clip and give to your friends and roommates, meaning you can share the flora love! Spider plants like bright, but indirect light, and need to be watered about every three days.

5. Air plants

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Nobody, and I do mean nobody, can kill an Air plant. These guys don’t need soil, and only need to be misted with water one every week or so. You can put Air plant in, on, or around anything. Geodes, frames, pots, your COM 101 textbook, anything. Much like succulents, if you’re going with an Air plant you might as well go with more than one, because they can be found for very cheap and look great in a group.
While these are just some of the easiest and hardiest houseplants, there’s a whole world of flora out there! Stores like economy hardware in Brookline, and Home Depot if you can go farther out of town, often have a ton of reasonably prices plants in a variety of sizes. If you’re looking for something already in a cute pot and don’t mind having fewer options, try Back Bay Florist on Mass Ave or Central Square Florist in Cambridge. Of course the internet can also be used for goods and services, and Amazon, Etsy, and Bloomscape all have great plants available as well. From my (obsessive amount of) plants to you, happy sprouting!

 

Geneve: Why Everyone Needs a Letter Board in Their Life

I bought my letter board from Primark this past spring, on one of those shopping trips where you aren’t really looking for anything in particular but something catches your eye, it’s under $10, so you know you HAVE to get it.

I’ll be honest with you, I might have only bought it because it was extremely popular on Pinterest and Instagram, and I wanted to add it to my collection of “aesthetically trendy room decor things” that I adorned my living space with.

I’ve always loved hanging up inspirational quotes in my room, so this was like another excuse to do that, but I could change the quotes all the time.

It wasn’t until this summer that I realized why a letter board was such a crucial piece that every college student absolutely needs. And, here’s why.

You know when your best friend tries to tell you something that can just never get through to your head? Like “It doesn’t matters what others are doing, it matters what you are doing.” Or, maybe even something simpler, like “You got this.” Well, a letter board might actually make these quotes stick better, and you might start to believe the motivational quote it tells you.

When you’re spending no less than fifteen minutes tearing out tiny letters to arrange onto a letter board, counting out the rows to make sure it’s centered, and sometimes adding playful touches to make the words slanted or dome shaped, you’re actually in the process of letting these words engrain themselves in your head.

Have I convinced you yet? The board I use isn’t being sold at Primark anymore, but here are five options for you if you’re ready to get your own!

  1. Forever 21 White Letter Board | $9.90– It comes in black, too! And for under $10? SCORE.
  2. Amazon Black 10 x 10 Felt Letter Board | $12.95– If you’re lazy and don’t want to head to the store, get this one shipped to you for free via Amazon Prime!
  3. Amazon Black 10 x 10 Felt Letter Board w/ Gold Letters | $14.95– Get one with gold letters for only $2 more!
  4. Amazon Black 12 x 16 Felt Letter Board | $16.79– A rectangular board is good if you know you’ll be making longer quotes and phrases.
  5. Amazon Maroon 10 x 10 Felt Letter Board | $15.93– Get one in your favorite color for a nice pop!

Share your pictures of your new letter board decor with me over on Instagram at @genevelau! I hope that I’ve convinced you all to get one now. What better time than now, at the start of the new school year, to add a new piece of decor to your space!

Steph: The Lazy Girl’s Guide to Healthy Dorm Living

As a response to Jon’s blog last week about exercise, I’m here today to provide some tips for those of us who are too lazy to go to the gym. I know I can’t be the only one who has problems with motivation when it comes to working out and eating healthy. Lets put it this way: I live in Warren, and don’t go to the Fit Rec because I’m too lazy to walk there. Oh, the irony. Now I know this is terrible, and everyone should make an effort to actually go to the gym. But, here are a few very small things you can do to avoid gaining the dreaded Freshman 15 without actually going to the gym.

1. Take the Stairs. As a resident of the 7th floor of Warren, I’m the girl that gets the dirty looks when I take the elevator from the 4th floor lobby. And to be honest, those looks are totally warranted, even though they are mean. There is no excuse for me not to take the stairs every day, and it helps give me a little bit of physical activity after a long day of sitting in classes. For those of you that live on higher floors, take the stairs halfway up! By the time you get there, you could be motivated to just push on through and take them allll the way…

2. Take Advantage of Sargent Choice Options. When you think about it, BU makes it really easy to eat well. Almost every night there’s a delicious alternative to greasy (albeit also delicious) pizza, that’s also good for you! If you aren’t familiar, these are the options with the shortest lines in the dining hall known as Sargent Choice Options. Looks can be deceiving—I tried sesame tofu with sticky brown rice the other night. It looked a tad concerning. But it was actually very, very delicious. I then rewarded my good eating choices with 3 chocolate chip cookies! Oops….

3. Do a Mini-Workout in your room before Bed! Not only will it make you feel better, but it will also provide entertainment for your roommate! Do a simple workout in the comfort of your own room: 10 push-ups, 10 crunches, 10 jumping jacks, two reps of each. A little goes a long way, and just think of how nice and extra comfy your bed will feel when you lie down after your “strenuous” workout!

So to all my lazy comrades out there, try these simple tips out. Every small thing counts, and it will help with the guilt you feel when you see someone walking out of the dinning hall in their workout clothes holding an apple as you pass them with a plateful of cookies…

 

Alexa: How to Not be Homesick

Hey everyone! Hope the semester is treating you all well!

I remember last year around this time I was beginning to transition from the excitement of being a freshman in college to missing my sweet chocolate lab. I was homesick. Luckily, I was able to figure out ways to cure my homesickness, (lets just pretend that’s a word), and I thought now would be a perfect time to share.

1. Skype:

Skype and Facetime are both great ways to stay in touch with your family and friends back home. There is something about seeing someone that is much better than just a five-minute phone call.

2. Realize You’re Not Alone

Seriously, everyone gets homesick. Especially coming to BU from California, I found it easier to admit that I missed home a little when my other friends from California did too. If you can talk about it, soon it won’t be as lonely.

3. Keep Mementos from your room

Keeping something from your room in your dorm room helps you adjust more to your new (but temporary) home!

4. Get Involved

I know it’s been drilled in enough, but getting involved is one of the best ways to forget about being homesick. If you are busy interning for a radio show, or shooting for BUTV, pretty soon you’re so busy you forget about wishing you were back at home.

Hope these tips help! Also good luck on your upcoming first COM test!

 

Jason: Best Campus Dining Halls

Jason Kashdan
Jason Kashdan

After experiencing BU for one entire year I figured I’d sit down and write about something practical, something you guys might find useful. So here is my list of the top five residence dining halls at BU.

•    West Campus- West gets my vote as the number one because of sheer variety. West campus has the most options by far and although I have never been able to say with certain that it tastes better than the food in warren, having more options allows for a better chance that you’ll find something that’s healthy and tastes good. I’m also pretty sure they always have a make-your-own quesadilla bar, which is awesome.  The only downside is that for me the dining hall usually seemed more crowded than others

•    Warren Towers- My home base would have gotten the number one vote except for this last month. I think whoever runs the dining in Warren Towers may have checked out a little early because the selection (and quality) of the food over the last month has not been on par with its usual high standard. Regardless, the food here is usually exceptional with plenty of choices. The desserts are so good they’ll probably kill you and the dining hall is much more spacious than West campus.

•    Myles Standish Hall- Although the building itself might need some work, the dining hall is in pristine condition. There are two sides to this dining hall (separated by a hallway) One is a more lively, social setting with several flat screen TV’s and the other reserved for more intimate, quiet dining. While smaller than both West and Warren, there are usually enough options and the food is pretty good. There’s nothing really bad about the dining in Myles but I guess there’s nothing that great either. But hey, average isn’t that bad.

•    Shelton- It has just about as many options as Myles, the dining hall is pretty nice, and the food was good. I’ve only eaten there once though so I don’t have much to talk about.

•    The Towers- Ok, honestly, who decided to build a dining hall in a basement? As much as I love eating next two ceiling high industrial sized fans or radiators, or I don’t even know what they are, some windows would be nice, no? The choices here are fairly limited and I don’t know, I mean its not gonna kill you but there are better options than Towers.

I hope you guys find this useful. I am not endorsed by any of the five residence dining halls so my opinion of each is honest and unbiased. Stay tuned for my next piece on the top five places to eat Late Night.