Apartment 101: Essentials for a College Apartment (Packing List!)

Happy Wednesday!

Last week I published my Minimalist College Packing List for any dorm room. I know it was helpful to many who were moving into their 1st or even 3rd dorm room. Dorming is a common living situation for students. Yet, it’s not the only option. There is a population of students who live in on-campus or off-campus apartments. I didn’t want to leave them out of the packing list posts.

Last summer, I moved into my first apartment. It was an exciting milestone for me! However, the reality of an apartment kicked in when I realize the only items I could take was my clothes, desk supplies, and backpack. Everything else had been generously loaned to me by my school ( desk, bed, closet).

It’s a big momentous step to move into an apartment in college. Nevertheless, it can be overwhelming when you don’t know what to buy. Similar to a dorm, you don’t want to over pack for a (assuming on a college budget) small apartment. After a year of living in my apartment, I have narrowed down the essentials for a college apartment. All the items mentioned below are what I found useful and highly recommend for a college student to have. Everyone’s lifestyle is different, so use this list as a guide to furnishing your apartment.

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What are your college apartment essentials? Did I miss anything? Or do you think some items aren’t necessary to survive. Let me know in the comments below about your experience living in an apartment!

-Kim 🙂


Minimalist College Packing List

Happy August everyone! Wow, can you believe that summer is almost over? August officially marks BACK TO SCHOOL season! I know that many of you are starting or going back to college in mid-August.

The summer before college, I spent my days researching what to pack. I looked at every Pinterest packing list there was on the Internet. Looking back, some of the packing lists were very excessive. While an “ULTIMATE guide to college packing” may be helpful. It can be easy to go overboard with buying dorm things.

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Essentials for an Office Job or Internship

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For the last couple of weeks, I’ve been trying to adjust to a full time job schedule. It’s can be jarring going from a full time student to working in an office from 8-5 p Luckily, I think my body has adapted to it now.

Now you’re probably asking “What is your job?” The first is one is an on-campus job I’ve held for 1.5 years now. It involves a lot of data entry and filing and misc. office tasks. The other one is a social media internship. With both commitments, I’m usually out of my apartment for 7 hours or so each day. This means that I have to bring whatever I would need in my bag to survive the entire day.

Without further ado, here are my essentials for an office job or internship!

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Self-Care During Finals Week

“What if we recharge ourselves as often as we did with our phones.”

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Can you all believe it’s March already? It feels like the year is flying by for me. Life update? I just submitted my last final for winter term of my Junior year! Woohoo!

Speaking of finals, it can be stressful and difficult during that week. You’re overwhelmed by 3-6 finals projects, essays, and presentations due within a week time frame. It can be easy to make your finals you priorities and push other important thing aside. However, you should never put your health on hold. It doesn’t matter if it’s physical, mental, or emotional health. As someone who gets extremely anxious and stressed during finals week, I forget to take care of myself sometimes. And I know many of my friends and peers can relate. After going through finals myself, I thought it was important to share 5 ways to self care.  Continue reading

How to Stay Motivated Halfway Through the School Term

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Happy Wednesday! For the last few weeks, I have been unmotivated with my school work. I feel the most motivated at the start of a new term. There’s something about new pens, and notebooks that pumps me up. However, halfway through the term I lose my motivation easily. I no longer feel excited to get my homework done before the due date or keep up with my reading assignment.

The feeling of being unmotivated can have a huge effect on your grade in class. Which is a big alarm for many college students. Today, I’ll be sharing my tips for how I stay motivated halfway through the term!

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5 Tips for Studying Productively at the Library


Happy Wednesday! I just wanted to take a moment to let you all know that my posting schedule has changed. I will now be posting on Wednesday at 9 AM PST! Keep your eyes open for new content on Wednesday from now on!

College is all about new and fun experiences: parties, concerts, midnight food runs, and studying. Okay, maybe the last point isn’t the best part about college. But studying is a big part of being a college student! I like to make studying fun by going to different buildings on campus. Each place has a different atmosphere. Some works and some don’t work for me. My favorite place to study is the library. I love the library because it’s a quiet space for me to focus on getting my essay done. Today, I’ll be discussing my 5 tips for studying productively at the library!

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5 Secrets to Decorating a Dorm

Hello again! August is half way over which means one thing: BACK TO SCHOOL SEASON. When I was an incoming college freshman, I was most excited about decorating my dorm room. I spent that summer in awed over dorm room pictures on Pinterest.

Personally, I think it’s important to make your dorm an inviting and welcoming place for you to come home to after classes and work. The dorm acts as our sleeping, studying, eating, social, and Me time space. It can be tricky to decorate your half of an 8 ft by 10 ft room and fulfill all of those spaces. Yet, I have learned it’s possible.

This upcoming school year, I will not be living in a dorm. I actually have my own apartment off campus now. Yay! However, with two years of dorm decorating under my belt, I wanted to share 5 secrets I’ve learned to make your dorm room Pinterest-worthy.

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Color Scheme/ Theme

The most important tip I can give about dorm decorating is to have color scheme or theme in mind. For color schemes, I recommend choosing three or less colors and buying pieces with those colors. For my dorm room, I went with a blue, yellow, and grey color scheme that I pulled from my comforter. Since my bed is the focal point of my room, I wanted my decor to compliment it. For example, I bought a yellow throw pillow and DIY a tissue paper tassle to fit my scheme. If colors are not your thing, choose a theme! When it comes to themes, envision what you want the atmosphere to look. Bohomeian? Girly? Relaxing? Bright and loud? Buy your dorm pieces that you feel represent your theme the best. Following a color scheme or theme helps bring a more cohesive look while showing off your personality.


This was my sophomore year dorm!


Set a budget

I hate to break it to you, but you can not afford everything out of the Pottery Barn magazine. It’s heartbreaking; I feel it too. Just because you’re decorating on a college student budget doesn’t mean your dorm can’t look like it’s from a magazine! The first step is to determine a budget. A budget helps you control your spending. After that, start your search for your dorm decor. My favorite stores to shop at are TjMaxx, Marshalls, Home Goods, thrift stores, and Target. These stores have adorable pieces for an affordable price!

Learn the rules

Take a break from your summer vacation and do a quick research of the dos and donts your residence hall has for decorating. I know it doesn’t sound fun, but guess what else isn’t fun? Getting a heavy fine on move out day because you weren’t suppose to use push pins on the wall! Each university has a different set of rules, so make sure you read up on it! For my school, we aren’t allowed to use make holes in the wall or hang items from the ceiling. Yet, your school may say otherwise. Make sure to do your research before moving in!

Proper Tools

Like I mentioned above, each university has their own rules about how to decorate  the dorm. Once you read up on the rules, buy the proper tools needed to transform your dorm! My school didn’t let us make holes in the walls so command strips were my best friends when living in the dorms! Command strips allowed me to hang decorative lights and other lightweight items without making a hole in the wall. The best part is at the end of the year, I just had to carefully remove it and voila! No damage, scuff, or mark left behind. There are command strips that can even hold heavy picture frames! Make sure you are getting the right command strip product for what you are planing on doing!

Super important note: make sure you read the instruction or watch the tutorials on how to properly remove the strips! Lesson learned, if you remove it improperly, it may leave a mark or even peel the paint!

A Piece of Home

Regardless of how close or far you leave home for college, bring a piece of home with you! I promise you will get homesick at least once in college. Bringing something that reminds you of home will help comfort and soothe your homesickness without having to drive or fly back home. For some people, they like to bring their childhood stuff animal or blanket. I actually brought tons of pictures and decorated my space with them. To me, pictures help take me back to a time where I was surround by my friends and family. So it was comforting to look at them on my wall when I was feeling alone at college. Don’t hesitate to bring something that reminds you of home. I promise you won’t regret it.


This was my freshman year dorm! 

I hope you enjoy the 5 secrets I learned on how to decorate a dorm room. Do you have any advice you would like to share? Would you like to see a separate post about my freshman and sophomore year dorm room? Let me know in the comments below! Thank you for reading!

-Kim 🙂