Daily Archive: December 9, 2012

Finals Survival Tips

Posted by Nicole

Happy Sunday night or Monday! I’m assuming that some of you have finals this week, or at least some of the younger college kid readers out there. Here are some tips for surviving the next week or two of the dreaded finals season.

1. Good snacks. I’ll start with the best one. A few days ago I walked to the grocery store with my roomie to stock up on study snacks. We decided that the brain burns calories while studying.

2. Make a list or calendar of what you need to do. Put things in perspective. And you have to admit it feels so great to cross things off of said list.

3. Get a workout in, even if you don’t really feel like it. You could also bring your notes with you to the gym. Double the pain, but double the benefit. You could also do a simple yoga video from Hulu or YouTube just to get the muscles working. You will feel better afterwards, guaranteed.

4. If you feel lazy whenever you wear pajamas/sweats, change into some real clothes! I know that when I shower, do my makeup/hair, and actually put on a decent outfit, I feel much more prepared for the day.

5. Study with friends!!! Talk about solidarity! Bonus points if your friends share their Greek food with you ;)

6. Find a place you like and study there. It might be the library, Starbucks, your bedroom; just do what works for you.

7. Listen to good study jamz. This works for some people, like me, that love listening to music while studying. I suggest Frank Ocean or The Weeknd (slow jams), Explosions in the Sky (instrumental), or a recent fave- Krewella’s “Troll Mix Vol. 1 F*** Finals Edition” downloadable from their soundcloud profile here.

8. Don’t stress. Try and remember what grade you got on a test in high school. Hopefully you aren’t dwelling on your old grades and you realize that a bad grade on a final won’t completely ruin your life. And a random photo from my senior year physics class:

9. Dedicate some time to having fun, whether it be taking a TV break, reading blogs, going shopping (hello Christmas), cooking/baking, or going out for dinner/dancing with friends.

10. That said, make sure you don’t spend too much time having fun that you neglect to get sleep. It seems obvious, but sleep often gets left behind in favor of studying. (Don’t mind the random piece of pie on this bed… found it in our photo archives lol)

Hopefully some of these tips help… If nothing else, now you have an excuse to go buy some snacks, go out with friends, and eat pie in bed.

Have a good week!

– Nicole

Q4U: What is your “finals survival tip”? Share your wisdom :)

Kim’s Martinis and Mistletoe Holiday Soirée

Posted by Lauren

Last night was just so much fun. My friend Kimberly hosted the most fabulous holiday party at her house in Fresno and she pulled out all the stops!

Kyle, Darrin, Kevin, Savannah, and I carpooled the three hours down to Fresno around noon on Saturday. We stopped for a quick lunch at Panera and I loaded up on coffee – necessary when a long night is ahead! When we got to Kim’s, we helped her and Molly set up. She was so well organized with a spreadsheet checklist, recipes printed out that we could follow, and a clear plan for the bar/food/dessert areas – such a terrific party planner and host!

We donned our cocktail attire, poured a few drinks, and got the Martinis and Mistletoe Holiday Soirée started at 7!


Her living room was made for an event like this. So red. So jolly.


Cocktails of the night: Candy Cane Martinis, Sparkling Cranberry Punch, Cherry Vodka Sodas… beer and wine, obviously.


Amazing food spread!!! x59283637


Bite-sized Baked Brie with Cranberry Jelly and Boogie’s Stuffed Mushrooms


Bacon Mozzarella Rotel Cups, Salted Caramel Krispies, Prosciutto and Goat Cheese Wrapped Breadsticks


Cranberry Feta Pinwheels, Stuffed Sweet Piquante Peppers (my fave!), Habanero Cornbread, Bourbon BBQ Cocktail Wieners


Taquitos and Guacamole, Holiday Tortilla Chips, Spicy Cheese Dips, Baked Brie with Walnuts and Raisins

Ready for something sweet? In addition to the bowls of candy and the best ever chocolate covered raisins, Kim set up this area too:


Fudgy Chocolate Toffee Bars, “Icicles” White Cheddar Cheetos, White Chocolate Dipped Oreos, Peppermint Shortbread Cookies, White Chocolate Pretzels, Toffee Nuts… and more taquitos :)

The guys played games outside…

Darrin, Jeremy, Kyle

The girls crafted cocktails inside…

Hostess on the left, Molly on the right!

And the merriment continued all night!

Polaroids! The Real Instagram

Getting festive with Kyle

Cheers! Molly, Pam and Jeremy, Kyle, Savannah and Kevin, Kim, Margaret

Margaret, Molly, and Kim

with Savannah and Pam

Showing Molly Snapchat… “sucks” that USC lost their game

No kidding.

Each guest left with a mason jar full of hot cocoa mix! I can’t wait to make this at the Tahoe cabin!


We all had such a great time, but my favorite moment had to be the song/dance party to Play It By tunes…. Too funny.

After a deep cleaning effort this morning, we all went to Huckleberry’s for breakfast.


Thanks for hosting the party and letting us crash at your place, Kim!

Question: Are you hosting or attending a holiday party this year? My work doesn’t have one, so I’m so happy Kim gave me an opportunity to dress up!