Living with Roommates: How to Effectively Wash Dishes

Going to college, or just leaving your parents house you will probably live with roommates at some point. One of the biggest things that ruins a friendship with your roommate is washing the dishes. People just don’t see eye to eye about when and or how to wash the dishes. The video below shows the absolutely most effective way to wash dishes, and will stop a lot of passive aggressive arguments.

This video is just a joke, please don’t be the roommate that never washes their dishes!

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A Californian’s Guide to Living in Montana

By Alexandra Kuchinski

If someone had come from the future four years ago and told me that I would be living in Montana in my early twenties I wouldn’t have believed them.  

As someone who grew up in the heart of a major metropolitan area less than 20 minutes walking from the beach I’m the last person that anyone would have expected to move to Missoula.  

However, with the incentive of a good scholarship, snowboarding and fly fishing I found myself drawn to this little mountain town.  

Although moving to Missoula hasn’t been without its challenges, through trial and error over the last 3 years, I’ve managed to learn a few things about the place that I now call home.

If you’re from any other state than Montana you will get poked fun at. 

Especially if you’re a Californian.

It is completely possible experience all the seasons in a 24 hour period—learn how to dress accordingly or you will get sick.

Where I grew up the most layers I ever needed were a winter and summer hoodie.  Most of the time they were the same hoodie. 

Winter weather is not bad until it there’s wind or the temperature is in the single digits.

Learn and embrace that 40 degrees is t-shirt weather.

Ice is real and you will fall on it in the wintertime no matter how much you penguin walk.

It builds character. 

Everyone knows each other.  Get over it. 

Despite it’s significant geographic size, it’s a small state.  While there are a fair amount of out of state students there are a ton more locals and most of the time they already know each other.  It’s a pretty small town and even smaller school.  Tread carefully.

The food will take getting used to

Salt and pepper will be the most spice that you see.  And although the number of places where you can get a bomb burger or pizza is uncountable the best Mexican food here is still Taco Bell.

The most you will ever dress up will be a nice t-shirt and cowboy boots

Welcome to the wild west

Young Professionals in an Old Professional’s World

Skylar Vukasin

In order to succeed in business you need to secure a well-paying job; in order to land a well-paying job you need experience; in order to gain experience, a company must take a chance and hire the young college graduate.  It’s an age-old dilemma, yet somehow college graduates still end up being turned down by employers because they want someone with experience. We’ve all heard or asked the question,  “how am I supposed to get experience if no one hires me?”  

We’ve all heard the success stories, the ones our professors tell us about where graduates with bachelor’s degrees land jobs with some of the top companies in the nation. We all have similar potential and the education to obtain these same internships that lead to those hired positions, but not all of us will because there are only a few positions offered and thousands of students applying for them.

So, what do the people who don’t get the Google, Nike, Deloitte or KPMG internships (the ones that lead to a future hire) do to be noticed, seen or to simply stand out? When GPA’s don’t seem to matter and you already have a LinkedIn bio to tell people why you’re a great hire, how can we be top-notch and different?

For those of us who didn’t get the foot-in-the-door job/internship, what can we do to stand out in a world where experience is still the primary driving factor behind a job offer? We still have to fight for our place in the conference room. We still have to prove to our superiors, colleagues and future employers that we’re not just another one of “those millennials”. You know the ones I’m talking about – the lazy, know-it-all, millennials that also have no work ethic. In order to avoid some of those stereotypes, here are some tips from my own experience, as well as some of my peers, on how to stand out.

  1. Dress for success. The ever-expanding tech and startup world may allow for a more relaxed and casual dress code, but many companies still want their employees to look and act professionally.  
  2. Be confident, but not a know-it-all. Just because you understand technology and the internet does not make you smarter or better than your colleagues.
  3. Don’t overstate your accomplishments. You know what you are and aren’t capable of. Don’t say you’re an experienced website designer just because you’ve logged into the backend of a website once or twice.
  4. Learn from your older colleagues – after all, it is experience we’re after and they have it.
  5. Teach your colleagues what you know about technology and new trends. The more they can know and learn from you, the more they’ll trust and respect you.
  6. Challenge yourself. There’s a lot you still don’t know – be open to learning it.
  7. Speak up, but don’t overstep. This is a tricky one. This is a “know when to speak” kind of word of advice. Offer your ideas, because as obvious as it may seem, not everyone thinks like you and it may not have been thought of before.
  8. Never think something isn’t your responsibility because it wasn’t in your “job description”. Go above and beyond. It’s usually noticed, and if it’s not, at least you know you’re doing your absolute best.
  9. Don’t let people take advantage of you. Paving your way often leads to doing things for others to either fill time gaps or prove your worth, while this is great, know when to say no – you’re not everyone’s assistant.
  10. Ask questions. No one grows by doing the same thing all day, every day. Keep learning from those around you as well as other resources.
  11. Read. You hear it from your professors and guest speakers all the time. “The most successful people read every day”. Not only is reading one of the best ways to learn, but it’s also a way to calm down, decompress and take your eyes off a screen for a while. Additionally, reading for fun or leisure is much more enjoyable when there’s no school deadline attached to it.
  12. Make time for fun. Don’t get so caught up in trying to prove yourself that you forget about taking care of yourself. Enjoy your time off and make time for it. Burnout is popular among ambitious young professionals – work for a living, don’t live for work.

Your first “real job” is terrifying, but also an exciting opportunity. Establish that you deserve to be there and you are ready to handle any task that is thrown your way. Once you get through the door and have the job, it’s not all downhill from there. Quite the opposite actually, now it’s time to work your ass off. Good luck!

Traveling in Your 20s on a Budget

Baylee Barckley

Koh Phi Phi, Thailand

Thailand is a very popular tourist country for young travelers. Koh Phi Phi, specifically, because you can enjoy the Phi Phi Islands with white sandy beaches and clear blue water. The only way to get to these islands is by ferry or boat. This popular destination spot has diving and snorkeling that get great reviews from travelers. Also, the Phi Phi Island have made a few movie appearances, like The Beach, starring Leonardo DiCaprio. An interesting fact about the Phi Phi Islands is that Phi Phi Leh is free of human inhabitants and Phi Phi Don is without roads. This is a destination to relax and enjoy the views for a couple days. While Koh Phi Phi may be the more expensive option in Thailand, it is still inexpensive to visit compared to other countries.

CostAvg daily price for traveling in Koh Phi Phi: $66
Avg price of food: $11 (per day)
Avg price for a hotel: $73 (per couple)
MealsFood: $3 to $28 (depending on style of food)
Beer: $2.30
FlightsLAX to Phuket City: $582
*depending on departing airport
TransportationFerry to island: $12 to $18 (one way)
AttractionsDeep Sea Fishing: $85
Rock Climbing on cliff: $31 (Tonsai Tower)
Learn to cook Thai Food: $16
Sunset Kayaking

Arenal Area, Costa Rica

Being one of Costa Rica’s most popular destination spots, Arenal Area offers a beautiful hiking area, a lake, and the very popular La Fortuna waterfall sitting at the base of a volcano. A few things to see while visiting Arenal is the Arenal National Park where you can see wild life, hike trails, and see a great view of the sunset. The hot springs are also another necessary stop to make in Costa Rica. These natural hot tubs are located at the base of the volcano that you can take a dip in after a long hike. If you want to take a closer look at the crater of the volcano you can take a tour via the hanging bridges. Arenal Area is different than most traveling spots, but it offers attractions that other places can’t.

Flights LAX to San Jose: $450
*depending on departing airport
HotelHostel: $10 to $15 (shared room)
Budget Hotel: $50 to $70 (private bathroom, A/C, hot water)
Mid-Range Hotel: $100 to $200 (A/C, hot water, TV, Wi-fi, complimentary breakfast)
TransportationPublic Bus: $4
La Fortuna Bus: $2
Taxi:$5
Bike Rentals: $6 (half day)
Easy to get around on foot
MealsLunch: $8 to $12
Beer/ Cocktails: $2 to $3
AttractionsHanging Bridges Tour: $23
National Park: $9
Zip Lining: $50 to $85
Rafting Tour: $70 to $130
Kayak Tour: $50 to $75

Albania

Traveling to Europe is perceived to be costly, but Albania is an exception to this rule. Albania is a much more affordable place to live than other areas in Europe, which benefits young travelers in there 20’s in getting to experience a little bit of Europe. One of the top attractions in Albania is the castle in the city of Shkoder. An interesting attraction for tourists is a rotating bar in Tirana called The Sky Tower Bar. You can enjoy a nice cold beer while slowly spinning 360 degrees getting to see Tirana at all angles and watching the sunset. If you are interested in learning about the history of Albania, you can visit an abandoned bunker museum in Tirana. Another attraction that other destination spots don’t offer is wild camping on the Albania’s beaches. The Albania Riveria is a major attraction to Europe by young travelers because of the reputation it has with being a music location hosting music festival like Turtle Fest. Also, nightclubs, like Havana Beach Club draw people in their young age across Europe.

CostHotel: $47
Airbnb options
MealsFood: starting @ $5.50
Beer: $2
Coffee: $1.30
TransportationTaxi: $2.30
FlightsJFK to Tirana: $500
*depending on departing airport

Havana, Cuba

Havana being the capital city of Cuba has always been a popular tourist destination with vintage cars and colorful Spanish colonial architecture; however, it wasn’t always that Americans could go visit Cuba. In December 2014, the relationship between the U.S. and Cuba was restored, but not without a few traveling restrictions. In order to book a solo travel experience to Cuba it needs to be for educational purposes. This is where you meet Cuban citizens in normal daily life setting, like school and community centers. One of the adventures you can take part in is riding in a vintage convertible for an hour cruising up and down the avenues of Havana. Something that is a must see in Cuba is the El Malecon, a five-mile-long boulevard that stretches along the water, with Havana Bay on one side and Old Havana, Vedado, and Central Havana on the other. At night, many Cubans come to watch the sunset with their loved ones, drink and laugh.

CostAvg daily price for traveling in Havana: $18
Avg food price: $5.39 (per person)
Avg price for hotel: $17 (per couple)
Avg drink price: $2 (cocktails) $1 (beer)
TransportationPrivate Taxi: $2.50 to $7 (within city)
Shared Taxi: $0.50
Viazul Bus: $4 to $5 (reliable schedule and A/C)
City Bus: $0.04
Scooter: $25 (per day)
FlightsMiami to Cuba: $275
*depending on departing airport
AttractionsMuseum of the Revolution: $8
Vintage Car Ride: $15 to $25 (30 min)
Horseback Riding: $115 (3 hour trip depending on city)
Scuba Diving: $40 (including equipment)

Bali, Indonesia

Bali is a place that only requires a traveler to walk outside to enjoy themselves. This city, also known as, the Island of the Gods, is meant for exploring. Surrounded by beautiful seas and golden-brown beaches, Bali is a surfer’s dream, which you can do in Kuta Beach, the most famous beach in Bali. Don’t know how to surf? Across the sand bar you can sign up for surf lessons. The Island of Gods also offers other attractions like the Ulun Danu Temple. This building is one of the quietest and most serene places on the island. The Bali Treetop Adventure Park is ready for an afternoon of adrenaline, but also is great for families and children as young as 4 years old. Other attractions tourists can’t miss out on are the caves, museums and parks that Bali offer.

CostAvg daily price for traveling in Bali: $63
Avg price for food: $19 (per day)
Avg price for a hotel: $74 (per couple)
FlightsLAX to Denpasar: $850
*depending on departing airport
Transportation
Motorbike: $20 to $30 (per week; need international license)
AttractionScuba Diving: $100 (per day for 2 dives; includes lunch, transportation, and equipment)
Massages: $10 (per hour)

Oh My God, I am turning into my mother!

By Mallory Hickethier

At 24 years old, I never would have guessed that I would be so much like my mom. In middle school, we do anything to not be like our parents. We don’t want people telling us that we are like our parents. How dare someone says that, I am my own person. But now that my generation is learning how to ‘adult’ there are things that we have picked up from our parents just by aimlessly watching them or from them teaching us how certain things should be done.

This is a list that I have gathered from different people, both men and women of differing ages, that have grown up to have similar habits like their parents. Whether we like it or not.

“It’s completely normal to sound and act like your parents, no matter how hard you have tried to be different. It doesn’t mean you have become them.” (Psychology Today)

Taking your hat off when you walk into a building

Most people don’t do this anymore but there are still some people, mostly men, who do this without even thinking about it anymore; it’s just habit now. This gentleman was taught this by his dad and grandpa.

Eat a spoon full of sugar to cure the hiccups

Well if this isn’t the biggest myth I have ever heard but people and their families swear by it. I guess it time for me to give it a try!

Back seat driving

My dad would probably agree with this… I am just as bad at back seat driving as my mom. Sorry mom and dad, I learned from you and I am sure many other people would say that’s where they have learned their back seat driving and road rage from too.

Loading the dishwasher

I’ll be honest, I have a specific way that I load the dishwasher and if the people I am living with don’t load it the way I am used to, I will rearrange it. Maybe it is a little bit OCD but Tupperware ALWAYS go on the top, knives do NOT go in the dishwasher at all, pots and pans don’t go in unless there is room and plates gets lined up in a row. One thing that has made college life sooo much easier, was getting a magnet that you can flip that says ‘clean’ on one side and ‘dirty’ on the other. No more wondering if the dishes are clean or not. Here is an Amazon link to buy one because they are game changers!

Underestimating time

Like when your mom tells you that something will take a couple of minutes, but it really turns into a couple of hours… *SIGH*

Ending phone calls the same way

Next time you hear your mom on the phone, listen to how she says goodbye. (Obviously it will be different depending on who she is talking to, but you’re not any different.) You might surprise yourself about how much you are starting to talk like her.

Deep clean your house weekly

Some people might deep clean their house weekly, others monthly, or maybe even never. Whichever one you do, that is probably how your parents did it.

Always check in with each other when traveling

My mom and I are constantly on the road. We let each other know when we are leaving our destination and when we arrive at the next destination. It is always a good check in for both of us. I highly recommend to this, if you don’t already.

Check your vehicle before a road trip

My roommate has made it a habit to check his oil, tires, gas, etc. before long road trips, which is especially practical in Montana when you can travel miles and miles before seeing another car or gas station.

Putting sheets and towels away

Put your clean sheets and towels away on the top when you are done washing them. But the real part of this plan is to pull from the bottom when you need to use them. This is for those that own more than one set of sheets and towels that is…

Feeling guilty if you have dessert first

Well this most definitely is not about me, but there are people who were taught a young age that they HAD to eat their dinner first before they were allowed to have dessert. I think most of the time my parents were just happy if I ate anything as a kid. Nonetheless, I think this is generally a good rule to follow so you don’t fill up on sweets before dinner even if the dessert looks better than the main course.

Keep everything possible in the freezer

We have always been taught to freeze things and then unthaw them if we want to eat it. Why waste food when you can freeze it and save it for later?

Do the dishes while you are cooking or right after you are done eating

This tends to be a little bit harder for some people to follow just because of the fast-paced life they live. My mom rarely leaves dishes in the sink after dinner. I try not to do this either but ya know… life. If I have learned anything, it’s that I need to be more like my grandma and mom in the sense of cleaning up right afterwards instead of procrastinating.

Always have a beer when you come home from work

I have lived with my roommate for the last two years and he never walks his dog before he has a beer. I asked where he got this idea from and immediately, he said his dad. I kind of second guessed him as we both laughed and then he looked back at me and said “YEP! Definitely my dad.” He claims it is the best way to end the work day.

These aren’t necessarily lessons but yet tendencies or propensities that we learned over the years while living with our parents. Most of these have become habits that we mindlessly do. These are the things that help us think about our past generations and what they were taught as young adults too. Once we take that step back and think about what weird things we do and ask our parents if they did those things, it is then that we realize who we got those routines from.

If I could be half the woman my mom is, I would be so fortunate and mostly because of the things she taught me when I was growing up. Something that I will never forget from her is every day she would tell my brother and I to be “kind, honest and respectful.” And to tell you the truth, I will probably repeat those same three words to my kids someday.