From Oswego, IL

Hi! I’m Lauren and I’m from Oswego, Illinois.

I’m a freshman, currently, majoring in environmental science and hope to start a career in wildlife conservation in the future.

I’m a devoted nature lover who enjoys painting, playing ukulele, writing, and spending my afternoons curled up with a good book and a cup of tea in a quiet park. When summer hits, you can find me bike riding or having a picnic in the grass.

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Beating the Winter Blues on Campus

If you’re from the Midwest, you know that Midwestern winters are long, dark, and bitter cold. This lack of sunlight and below freezing temperatures can put even the most prepared person in a funk. I’m from Illinois, about an hour away from the windy city of Chicago. So, I figured I could use my cold weather expertise to help keep your spirits up during the winter months at Iowa State.

Open your blinds.

In the winter, the days are short and the nights are long. Sometimes it can feel like between classes, you’re barely able to catch a glimpse of sunlight. The lack of vitamin D is enough to make the most cheerful person down in the dumps. Opening your blinds and curtains in the morning will allow you to get a few more hours of daylight as you get ready for the day, eat a snack or finish your homework.

Take advantage of the few warm days.

Every now and then, we’re lucky to have a few days in the high 30’s and mid 40’s. If you’re anything like me, being trapped inside all day because it’s too cold to enjoy the outdoors really gives me a case of cabin fever. If you check the weather and notice its a bit warmer than usual, take advantage of it! Walk to your class instead of taking the bus, walk to get food, or if you can bear it, sit on a bench outside as you eat a snack! (Unless of course it’s covered in melted snow, then maybe that’s not such a great idea.)

Dress for the weather.

Nothing feels as bad as getting dressed up, and then stepping outside to go to class only to realize that you’re not dressed for the weather. And even worse… you don’t have enough time to go back and change! Now you’re stuck freezing cold, walking around like a Popsicle until you have enough time to get more layers. It always helps to check the weather before you leave out for the day. Also, some days it helps to wear boots, or shoes with good traction to prevent slipping on ice, your tailbone will thank you later! As an extra precaution make sure you keep gloves with you even if you feel that you don’t need them. You never know when you might be out later than usual, and the temperature drops!

But most importantly,

…Don’t forget to take care of yourself.

Sometimes in the midst of a new semester and the crummy weather, it can be hard to remember to take some time aside to really take care of yourself. Make sure you don’t push off your needs!

Make it a good semester, Cyclones!

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