5 Things Every College Student Needs

5 THINGS EVERY NEW COLLEGE STUDENT NEEDS

This is a post from the archives, but is still very much applicable!

If you’ve been following along for any amount of time, you’ll know I graduated with my masters degree two months ago. It was a long five-year program of juggling part-time work and part-time school, managing my energy and to do lists, and figuring out all of the things. It’s crazy to think that this has been my life for the past five years – juggling assignments, work, reading, research papers, group meetings, confusing homework, all of it.

I am currently in the process of figuring out what life looks like post-graduation. This fall is the first time in my whole life that I have not been preparing to go back to school, but I still love the thought of a fresh start in the fall and will still be falling back on some of these tools as I transition into full-time work. This list is certainly not exhaustive but as we kick off a new year and new semester of school, these are the five essentials I turn to.

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SUMMER RECAP

I can’t be the only one who keeps asking this question: How is it already August??…right?! Please don’t tell me I’m alone. It has been a whirlwind of a couple of months but I am trying to live in the tension of savoring the final days of summer while also craving the routine that fall and new seasons beg. In fact, I’m actually okay that summer is coming to a close. This fall will be the first time I won’t be going back to school, yet life right now is still offering some small fresh starts. And who doesn’t love a fresh start?
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LIFE LATELY, AN UPDATE

Hello sweet friends! Goodness, it’s been a long time. The first three months of this year were a little crazy and extra full, forcing me to really step back from some commitments or extra things to focus on what matters most. If ya’ll have been around for any extended amount of time, you know I’m passionate about living simpler, saying no to things I don’t have to do, and seeking rest over rush. While things aren’t technically slowing down over the next two months or so, I wanted to pop in, say hello, and give a little life update!
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Butternut Squash Pizza | amandabixler.com

BUTTERNUT SQUASH PIZZA

As much as I love the new year – a fresh start, an empty planner, a clean home after taking down all of the Christmas decorations – I still find myself craving the wonderful flavors of November and December. Pumpkin ravioli, roasted Brussels sprouts, cranberry crostini. Give them all to me. And maybe it’s because it’s been freezing in Colorado for the past week or we had our first official snow day last week, but I am seriously craving cozy comfort food. So when I started looking around my freezer this past weekend and found a bath of the Pioneer Woman’s homemade pizza dough (it makes two batches of dough and freezes really well so I almost always have some in my freezer) and some butternut squash cubes, I knew a simple fall pizza was in my future.
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Some of my favorite things to stay focused, productive and motivated in graduate school. | amandabixler.com

GRADUATE SCHOOL ESSENTIALS

I am in my fifth and FINAL year of graduate school. It’s crazy to think that this has been my life for the past five years – juggling assignments, work, reading, research papers, group meetings, confusing homework, all of it – and in under six months it will be over. And I will take a deep breath, a long nap and give thanks for making it through. But until then, focus and motivation is essential. And to do that I need some of my favorite tools to stay productive and get assignments done, little by little. This list is certainly not exhaustive but as we kick off a new year and new semester of school, these are the five essentials I turn to.

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Gratitude: Some of my most loved, read, watched, and cooked memories from December 2016 | amandabixler.com

GRATITUDE: DECEMBER 2016

Goodness, how is it already January?! How does this happen? But truly, as much as I love Thanksgiving and Christmas, the quiet that the week between Christmas and New Years brings is so calming, so peaceful, so lovely. Having time to pause and reflect on the past year and make plans for the new year is one of my most favorite things – remembering our big move, reflecting on how faithful God has been to us adjusting in Colorado, growing this blog and making amazing blogger friends (shout out to Grady at Grady Bird Blog who writes awesome inspiration, especially for any stepmoms out there) – it’s truly been a year for the record books.
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An Advent Love | amandabixler.com

AN ADVENT LOVE

Love is all you need – or so the song goes, right? From sappy chic flick movies to over-the-top seasons of the Bachelor, our minds and eyes and thoughts and hearts are filled with how love “should” look. Passionate kisses in the rain, angry fights in the rain, friends running towards each other in the rain after finally figuring out they loved each other. Seriously, what is it about rain that seems to make every scene that much more romantic?
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An Advent Joy | amandabixler.com

AN ADVENT JOY

Earlier this year, we were going through a really tough season of life. It seems easy to brush it off – nothing externally was necessarily going wrong. Our health was fine, we had a home to live in, we had some friends and a good sense of community. But it felt like we were drowning in our mid-twenties, stumbling to find our footing and shape a life called by God and formed by Him. There were many days I woke up, uncertain of work or school or where I was headed, and I did not feel happy. I didn’t want to get out of bed and all I had to sustain me, to give me hope and peace of God’s sovereignty and promises was His Word. I poured myself into scripture and proclaimed His truths over my life.
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An Advent Peace | amandabixler.com

AN ADVENT PEACE

Last Sunday was the first Sunday of Advent, a season that denotes the four weeks leading up to Christmas. Advent marks a beautiful season of slowing down and yearning for the birth of our Savior, literally meaning “waiting” or “expecting”. Often times, these four weeks are marked by four themes – hope, peace, love and joy. Last week we looked at what an Advent hope can mean, placing our hope not in our external circumstances that can change or disappoint, but in Jesus’ humble birth, life, death and resurrection.
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What We Did on Vacation in Boston, MA | amandabixler.com

VACATION RECAP: BOSTON, MA

Last month, A and I got to celebrate my amazing brother’s wedding in Charlotte, North Carolina, and then decided to celebrate our anniversary a little early and take an extended vacation up through Washington D.C., Delaware and Connecticut, before ending up in Boston, MA. Neither one of us had ever been to Boston so we weren’t sure what to expect or how we’d feel, but it was by far our most favorite place we visited – good food, historical sites, awesome people, what more could you want?
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