Summer Adventures: Making Time With Loved Ones

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College Summer Relationship

It’s summer: the season of campfires, goodies on the grill, fun in the sun, and romance. But between work, friends, family and other commitments, it can often be a challenge to fit a relationship into the mix. And if your college boyfriend/girlfriend happens to live in a different state, this can only further complicate things.

So that being said, how can you make time for your loved one? How can you make sure coworkers, friends and family understand? How can you maintain your relationship and enjoy the summer with them?

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I’ve been with my boyfriend Jared since the beginning of our freshman year at St. Michael’s College. Even though I live in Massachusetts and he lives in Maine, we’ve managed to work out two (soon to be three!) summers’ worth of quality time together!

 

Maintaining a College Relationship Over the Summer

Make plans.

Before things start to get too busy, arrange a time to go over your summer schedules together and find times that you know will work for the both of you. For example, if you both work Monday through Friday, you’ll know to plan for weekend get-togethers throughout the summer.

Make note of bigger events that you know of ahead of time, like family reunions, vacations, etc. so you can both plan around them.

Talk to family and friends.

If they’re good friends, they’ll understand that you’ll want to spend time with your significant other over the summer. To avoid any drama, however, make sure you’re spending time with them as well. And of course, it’s always a good idea to facilitate interaction between your friends and your significant other. Long story short, spend time with your friends alone, but also make sure to spend time with your friends and significant other in a group setting. Testing these grounds and creating that inclusive atmosphere from the get-go will ensure that your friends feel included, but also understand that you and your significant other need alone time as well.

If or when you run into an issue, have a conversation, preferably in person. Instead of getting defensive and confrontational, approach the situation calmly and respectfully — because chances are, it’s nothing personal against your boyfriend/girlfriend. Assure your friend that you love them and love spending time with them, but that you need time with your boo too. But if they need constant reassurance and have trouble respecting how you choose to spend your time, perhaps a more serious conversation is on the table.

Have fun!

At the end of the day, however and with whomever you decide to spend your summer, it’s all about having fun and making the most of it! Have adventures, make memories, and share the love!

 

Happy Summer!

 

 

Recipes: 4 Things You Can Grill on Campus

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Summer Grilling

‘Tis the season for barbecues, hot dogs, hamburgers, and corn on the cob. But without access to a real grill, cooking your summer favorites while living on campus can be quite the challenge. Luckily, there are ways to get around not having charcoal and a porch by utilizing what you have in a shared kitchen. Here’s how you can grill up a feast with just a little effort and creativity.

4 Meals You Can Grill On Campus

 

1. Mediterranean Kabobs

Need a quick, simple, and healthy grill meal? Lamb (or any other meat) kabobs are so easy to make, you’ll be kabob-ing just about any combo you can think of!

Ingredients:
● 2-4 wooden skewers
● 1 lb. lamb, chopped in chunks
● 1 red onion, cut in large circles
● Handful of cherry tomatoes
● Full mushrooms
● 1 tsp. minced garlic
● ½ cup olive oil

Directions:
● Use wooden skewers to place lamb, onions, tomatoes, and mushrooms
● In a small bowl, mix olive oil and minced garlic.
● Turn on stove to medium and wait till warm. Pour mixture into pan.
● Place skewers on an oiled, flat surface pan and grill for 5-10 minutes on each side until lamb turns gray and onions are slightly translucent.

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2. Basic Ribs

Ribs? Really? Yes, you can make tasty, tender, sweet ribs in your dorm building kitchen as long as you have access to an oven and some tinfoil.

Ingredients:
● 3-4 lbs. ribs (serves 2-3 people)
● ½ package of dry rub mix
● ½ cup of bbq sauce

Directions:
● Preheat oven to 325°F.
● Use the dry rub mix to cover the ribs generously (use the whole package if you like lots of flavor).
● Place ribs in a baking pan and cover in foil. Cook for 2-3 hours.
● Remove, flip ribs over, and cover in bbq sauce. Cook for another ½ – 1 hour.

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3. Chicken Wings

Who needs a restaurant when you can make your own chicken wings in 10-20 minutes! Plus it gives you an opportunity to find your new favorite BBQ sauce.

Ingredients:
● 1-2 lbs. of chicken wings, skinless
● ¼ cup of milk
● 1 cup of flour
● 2 tbsp. of cooking oil
● Salt and pepper to taste
● BBQ sauce

Directions:
1. In a medium sized bowl, soak chicken wings with milk. Shake out excess and then put to the side.
2. In a ziplock bag, add flour, salt, and pepper. Place wet chicken in a few pieces at a time and then shake until they are covered. Shake again to remove extra flour.
3. In a larger, heated pan, add oil and then chicken one by one. Grill chicken on each side for about 3-5 minutes until cooked through. The “skin” should be pale but flakey.
4. While in the pan, add bbq sauce and stir to cover. Add flour if the sauce is too thin or doesn’t stick, add extra flour into the sauce.

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4. Crispy Corn on the Cob

Whether you’re a meat eater or a vegetarian, corn on the cob is standard grill food. But you can recreate it with just a pot of water and a heated grill.

Ingredients:
● 3 ears of corn, husk removed and clean (if you have a smaller pot, cut ears in half)
● 1 tbsp. of sugar
● Butter and salt to taste

Directions:
1. Fill the largest pot you have ¾ of the way with water, cover, and boil. Add corn and sugar to water and recover.
2. Corn will rise to the top when done, but cook a few extra minutes if you like your corn a little more tender. Dry off with a paper towel.
3. On a heated pan with butter or oil, place corn and allow to cook for about a minute on each side.
4. Add salt and butter before eating.

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Easy Ways to Get into the 4th of July Spirit

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4THJULY

 

Fourth of July is one of our favorite holidays of the year. There are just so many ways you can celebrate and show off your national pride. Pregaming for your Independence Day festivities can be easy and fun with these ideas for getting into the Fourth of July spirit!

Seven Easy Ways to Get Into the Fourth of July Spirit

 

1. Show off your red, white, and blue

Flag-­themed apparel is a must for all patriotic college students! Like any American holiday, half of the fun is in dressing up (re: ugly sweaters during the holidays, green for St. Patty’s). Pull out your favorite pair of blue jeans and coordinate with a red and white shirt and accessories! Or use this occasion as an excuse to wear white pants or skirts before Labor Day. Whatever you do, be sure your kicks match, too!

If you really want to show your American spirit, try painting your nails in the colors of the star­spangled banner ­­red, white, and blue.

2. Buy old­school fireworks

In most states, even ones that ban sales of bigger fireworks, your favorite light­ups from your childhood can be purchased pretty easily. Of course, we’re talking snakes, sparklers, and other innocent options. Be sure to read the directions and be super safe when using them! You can even take pictures with your sparklers spelling out U.S.A. They’ll make your Independence Day snap, crackle, and pop!

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3. Prepare your desserts

Fourth of July food usually revolves around the grill ­­ burgers, hot dogs, and other typical cookout items. But don’t forget your dessert! If you’ve got a serious sweet tooth, show it some love with red, white, and blue frosted cupcakes, vanilla cakes, or even chocolate cookies with colored jimmies. Better yet, seek out some star-shaped sprinkles from your local convenience store. For something even more creative, try baking a flag-striped cake with blueberries and strawberries or even colored Jell-O!

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4. Bone up on your history

You may think you know about the Founding Fathers and the Declaration of Independence, but these stories are far more than just a bunch of old guys in a Philadelphia hall. If you’re a history nerd, pick up a book on George Washington or Benjamin Franklin.

If you want to add a bit of modern, fun flair to your celebration, rock out to the soundtrack to Hamilton, which features nearly all the main players in the Revolutionary War!

5. Host a movie marathon

Speaking of fun ways to celebrate American history, historical fiction is a great way to learn what happened and understand the emotions involved. Films like The Patriot and Johnny Tremaine will get you in the right mood. Or, go with modern super­patriotic movies like Independence Day or Air Force One to get your blood pumping.

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6. DIY Decorations

Whether you’re living at home or are in your first apartment, your place simply won’t be complete unless you decorate for the holiday. One of our favorite crafts you can do yourself are wreaths made from scraps of red, white, and blue material knotted around a hoop. You can also make inspirational wall art using inspiring images and quotes from our Founding Fathers. Go with something impressive sounding like, “Give me liberty or give me death,” or “Don’t tread on me” to sound extra patriotic on this most American of holidays!

7. Plan your fireworks viewing party

If you’re in a big city (or even a suburb or small town that goes all out for the Fourth), you’re going to need to do a bit of planning in order to get the best seats for viewing the fireworks shows.

Assemble all of your friends and figure out a ride situation. Stock up on all of your necessities – a throw blanket is necessary for sitting on the lawn, or you might opt for camping chairs instead. To make an evening out of it, bring along a picnic basket with hoagies and subs, soft drinks, and chips. Maybe even pack in a couple of those patriot cupcakes, too!

And to make it an unforgettable night, bring your own noisemakers and glow sticks to light up the night!

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Summer Recipe: Banana Ice Cream

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Banana Icecream Recipe

School’s out, summer is here, and the start of classes is just around the corner. But it seems like everything costs a ton of money, doesn’t it? From summer staples such as water parks and theme parks to warm-weather favorites like hot dogs and even ice cream, the cost of having the best summer ever just doesn’t add up for our wallets.

One of our favorite treats, ice cream, usually ranks up there with the most costly purchases. Sure, you could track down the ice cream man or go to the grocery store for the really cheap stuff, but who wants that when what you really want is something ultra rich and tasty? You’re probably only going to get that from making your very own, custom ice cream. And no one is buying an ice cream maker on a college kid’s dime.

But what if you could make your own ice cream using only a couple of easy-to-find appliances from your parents’ kitchen and a handful of inexpensive ingredients? If you’ve been looking for a delicious summer snack that hits the spot and keeps you healthy, check out this amazing recipe for banana ice cream. It’s totally delicious and can be customized to any dietary need (except for a banana allergy). So get creative, get shopping, and get the perfect frozen treat that will please everyone from your vegan next-door neighbor to your sugar-demanding best friend.

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The Ultimate Cheap Banana “Ice Cream”

Ingredients & Tools:

● 4 bananas

● Mix-ins for flavor (for this recipe, we used 10 raspberries, 2 strawberries, and 1 tbsp. cream cheese)

● 1 blender

● 1 mixing spoon

● 1 piece parchment paper

● 1 cookie sheet

● 1 knife

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How to Make:

1. Peel the bananas and use the knife to cut them into slices approximately 1” to 1½” thick

2. Lay the parchment paper on the cookie sheet, then put the banana slices on the parchment paper, as evenly spaced as possible

3. Place the cookie sheet in the freezer for at least four hours (overnight works best). Ensure the cookie sheet is placed free of construction to avoid smashing.

4. When you’re ready to make the ice cream, begin by pulling up each individual slice of banana to ensure that they aren’t stuck to the parchment paper

5. Dump the banana slices into the blender

6. Press the “pulse” button a few times, allowing the banana chips to blend somewhat

7. After a few pulses, the frozen banana slices may mix a little, but mainly, they will stick to the sides of the blender. If that happens to be the case, use the mixing spoon to move the mixture back towards the center. You may need to repeat these two steps several times.

8. When the banana mixture has turned into a loose paste, add in your toppings. For Creamy 2-Berry Ice Cream, add in 10 raspberries (whole), 2 strawberries (sliced), and 1 tbsp. of cream cheese.

9. Close the blender and pulse again. Continue pulsing until mixture mixes smoothly (approximately 60 to 90 seconds, though this can take more or less time depending on your add-ins).

10. Spoon into a bowl. If the mixture seems too melty, return it to the freezer for 5 to 10 minutes to allow it to harden.

You can also top it off with more fruit and fresh herbs like we did. And now you have a deliciously creamy summer treat you’ve made by hand!

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OCM’s Recommended Reading List: Books for College Students

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OCM's Recommended Reading List- Books for College Students
Whether you live in the library or pick up the occasional bestseller here and there, it’s important for both your mind and soul that you get in some fun reading in between classes or during your breaks. To make it easier to find your next favorite book, we picked out a mix of classics, must-reads, beach books, and true stories that are made just for college students like you with characters experiencing some of the very same things you are.

 

OCM’s Recommended Reading List: Books for College Students

The Classics

Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger

You’ve probably more familiar with Salinger’s most popular work, The Catcher in the Rye. If you liked that one, you’ll love Franny and Zooey. It’s two short stories, each describing late-teenage girls discussing their discontent with life, college, and a world in which they view as fake and insincere. This is a perfect read if you like your drama with a side of philosophical talk.

 

The Paper Chase by John Jay Osborne, Jr.
Not exactly a classic, but this is pretty much required reading if you’re headed to the Ivy’s, are an ambitious student, or are planning on getting your law degree. It tells the story of a James Hart as he goes to law school at Harvard and meets a professor he becomes obsessed with. You’ll never look at a grade the same way after finishing this book.

 

The Must-Reads

The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach

If you’re a sports fan, especially baseball, this is an absolute must-have on your bookshelf. When a college baseball star’s life becomes complicated with fame and disappointment, his decisions affect more than just what happens on the field. It’s part romance, part philosophical, part modern epic.

 

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

On top of basically everyone’s reading list, you’ll figure out just why this book is so real, yet so hard to look away from. An obsessive writer of fan fiction, Cath is out of place at her school despite being talented. College drama only complicates the situation making her life stranger than fiction.


Beach Reads

Girl and Dream School by Blake Nelson

A two-parter, the first book, Girl, begins in high school, a great starting point for recent grads, and then moves to heroine Andrea headed off to college. But she quickly finds out it isn’t exactly what she expected or dreamed it to be. If you find college to be messy and complicated, you’ll be nodding your head in agreement with just about every experience Andrea has.

 

True Stories

Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain

It’s not really set in college, but it’s the perfect read if you think the best night out is a night in. With a ton of backed up research, you’ll learn just what makes you special, even if you have a harder time expressing it. And, you’ll be inspired to make the most of your personality in the classroom and in your future career.

 

The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch

Randy Pausch is a brilliant computer science professor who has a passion for all things life, but when he is diagnosed with terminal cancer, he is faced with giving his last college talk. His lecture on achieving your dreams is a culmination of wisdom, advice, and inspiration that you will not soon forget when you finish the last page.

 

Things You MUST DO the Summer Before You Leave for College

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Must Do Summer

With your high school diploma in hand, you’re probably feeling like you’re ready to tackle the world! After all, you survived high school, and now you’ve got college coming in just a few short months. But while you may be used to spending your summers just relaxing and waiting for school to come to you, the summer before you leave for college is your time to make sure everything is order. Not sure where to begin? Here are the 5 things you must do the summer before you leave for college.

5 Things You Must Do the Summer Before You Leave for College

1.   Send Your Thank You Cards

Consider sending your first round of thank you cards to those who wrote your college recommendation letters, anyone who read through your application, and counselors that may have set up tours or interviews. Secondly, pen a few lines for family who gave valuable input or support along the way. Then don’t forget about meaningful teachers who made an impact on you. Some thoughtful words can go a long way in keeping those relationships strong post-graduation.

2.   Get in Bonding Time

A summer vacation with your parents and siblings may seem juvenile now that you’re no longer in high school. But truthfully, you’ll miss those vacations — and time spent with your family. If your parents haven’t already set aside some time to spend with you, do it yourself. Bonding time is also essential for those friends you won’t be going to college with. Sure, it’s hard to divide your time up over the summer to make sure you get your goodbyes and memories-worth with everyone, so consider throwing a pre-college going away party or a road trip to your favorite beach destination. Take a ton of pictures, because you’ll want keepsakes of those times when you’re away.

3.   Build Up Your Resume

It’s not required that you spend your summer working, but you should keep your future career in mind when making plans. Employers love to see that you had a great work ethic from an early age. If you’re not ready for a job, try volunteering instead. Find a cause or organization you care about and spend a few hours each week pitching in. If you’re planning on studying education, tutor summer school. If you’re going to be a veterinarian, get some hands on experience by walking dogs and cleaning kennels at the shelter. It’s time well-spent!

4.   Research and Prepare

College is almost certainly at the forefront of your mind, and we can’t blame you there! There are so many unknowns with what it will be like to live in the dorms or how your class schedule will be laid out for you. Summer is the ideal time to read up on what past alumni have to say. Many colleges now have programs all summer long that connect you with past or current students, set up mentoring, provide overnight experiences, or start the orientation early. If you haven’t already, sign up for any programming you can! By the time you officially start school in the fall, you’ll feel more ready than ever.

5.   Treat Yourself

Finally, don’t forget that in the midst of the hustle and potential chaos, this is your summer too. College can occasionally get pretty stressful, and the first few months, you will almost certainly go through some completely normal bouts of homesickness. We recommend setting up a summer that allows you to kick back, soak up some rays, detox any graduation-related stress, and enjoy your life as it is. After all, as soon as August and September roll around, your life will be totally different!

Summer Adventures: Time With Yourself

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Summer Alone Time

After two semesters of freedom at college, coming home for summer break can be a sudden adjustment to make. So when you’re not busy dividing your time between work, family and friends, it’s important to take some time for yourself! For us rising seniors, it’s uncertain how many summers we have left in our hometowns. And while it’s just as important to be making some final stomping-ground-memories with family and friends, I also like to make sure I’m connecting personally to the places and experiences that make my hometown home.

So now you’re probably wondering, how can you make time for yourself this summer vacation?

1.) Treat yourself to a solo shopping spree.

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Winter’s over, spring is on its way out, and now it’s time to revamp your summer wardrobe. On my wishlist for the summer? A cute, bright tee shirt dress that I could dress up or down.

On a solo shopping spree, you don’t carry the burden of working around another person’s schedule, preferences and shopping-pace. You can take your time flipping through the racks, or make it a quick in-and-out stop for that one thing you were looking for.

2.) Explore on your break.

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I’m fortunate enough to work in the heart of the always hopping downtown area of my hometown. If anything says summer to me, it’s being around the water. Whether that means going to the beach, exploring the gorgeous, mile-long jetty in my boyfriend’s coastal Maine hometown, or walking along the waterfront of downtown Newburyport, there’s nothing better than summer spent by the water.

On my break at work, I sometimes enjoy a solo walk through town in the sun. Whether I’m grabbing a bench outside to eat lunch, walking down the street for a coffee, or exploring aimlessly down the Newburyport waterfront, I love being able to get outside in the middle of the workday.

3.) Make a homemade, healthy treat.

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You’ve just spent two semesters with dining hall food, late night splurges, and especially caloric dinners out. Now that you have the resources, it’s time to treat yourself to something that’s good for you!

I recently made this delicious (and picture perfect!) smoothie bowl with some frozen bananas, frozen blueberries, strawberries, and a little milk. I added as little liquid as possible for that thick, creamy, smoothie bowl texture, blended until smooth, poured into a bowl and topped with fresh bananas and strawberries. Yum!

I hope you’re all enjoying your summer vacations and prioritizing your time to make it a summer to remember!

 

Tips for Finding a Summer Job Before College

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Finding a Summer Job Before College

Going to college can cost a lot of money, even if you have an all-expenses-paid scholarship. That is why so many proactive incoming and current students use their summer break to earn and save up all that they can. However, finding a temporary summer job that works for your schedule and pays your worth can be difficult. These seven tips for finding a summer job before college will help you get the paycheck you need and deserve.

7 Tips for Finding a Summer Job Before College

1. Build a Résumé

Even if you haven’t worked a day in your life, a résumé is a MUST for all college students. It should highlight any previous work experience, such as volunteering at a local animal shelter or babysitting your neighbor’s child. It can also give an overview of your activities, your accomplishments, and your special skills. Use templates and other people’s résumés to give you an idea of the outline you should use when creating yours.

2. Take the Search Online

Sure, you may see “help wanted” signs in windows, but unless it says “stop in for an application,” you’ll likely have to find and apply for that same job online. Many employers, especially restaurants and retail, now have their applications online and do not take paper copies. Other businesses may have job openings but only list them on their website or on job boards such as Indeed, Monster, and LinkedIn. Before you waste a day going in, do your research online.

3. Check Your Network

The best way to find a short-term job is to talk to those who have done it before you. Ask your classmates or your friends. Have parents put in a good word for you with their coworkers. And don’t be afraid to just tell people that you’re looking. You never know who in your own community has an “in” with a job!

4. Look for ‘Seasonal’

Your magic keyword in your search should be “seasonal.” Seasonal is another word for short term based on demand. Seasonal jobs in the summer are usually outdoors, such as working with the local Park and Recreation offices in maintaining parks or being an overnight camp counselor. These jobs are usually perfectly timed to a college student’s schedule and are great ways to earn a quick paycheck without the hassle of a more permanent job.

5. Act Professional

Just because you’ll only be working there for the summer doesn’t mean you can treat it like it has no meaning. You’ll want to dress, speak, and work professionally from the moment you ask for an application until the day you leave. Not only will you be more likely to be hired and receive a great review at the end of the summer, but you may also have made an impression on an employer who could give you a glowing recommendation (and who may hire you back next summer).

6. Be Realistic

Honesty is the best policy when it comes to summer jobs. Your future employer should know when your very last day on-site is. They should also know before hiring you about any vacation time you will need or if you are taking a summer class. The last thing you want is to be fired from a summer job for not being straightforward with your boss.

7. Create Your Own Job

If all else fails, take your motivation to earn money and start your own summer business! It can be as simple as running a drop-in babysitting service for parents in need of a last minute sitter or mowing lawns for neighbors. All you need is some creativity and an eye for what others want and will pay for.

 

Summer Suggestions: Shows We’re Tuning Into

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summer tv shows

After a long spring semester, it’s time to play catch-up… on our favorite television shows that is!

With summer TV just about to air and programs like Netflix and Hulu replaying everything we missed in the fall, winter, and spring, we’ve got our popcorn ready and our watch-list full. Need some suggestions? Here’s the top 9 summer television shows we’re binging on.

1. Game of Thrones, HBO

Oh, Game of Thrones. We love you for several reasons. One, you always keep us guessing (even if we have read the books). And two, you make bloody violence and war-time drama actually enjoyable. Fans of this show have been tuning in for four seasons now, but it’s not too late to catch up to the current season as long as you’ve got an HBO subscription.

2. The Mindy Project, Hulu

Mindy Kaling is infectious, bubbly, naive, and brilliant all in one show. The Mindy Project is the perfect indulgence if you love shows that empower ladies while also just being hilarious. You’ll dig her getting into all kinds of professional and dating problems as she tries to come to terms with adulthood.

3. Orange is the New Black, Netflix

If marathoning through shows is your thing, OitNB is the perfect show for you. Set in a women’s prison, you follow Piper and a host of diverse prisoners as they try to just survive. The last three seasons have been almost perfect mixes of comedy and drama while also being socially insightful. And if you loved them, you won’t be able to wait for season 4, which airs in June!

4. Battlebots, ABC

Okay, Battlebots certainly isn’t GOT or OitNB in terms of quality stories or incredible acting. But there’s something about robots destroying robots and nerds going head to head with impressive engineering that hooks you. Wind down, decompress, and cheer for your underdog robot.

5. Outlander, Starz

We’re all for period pieces, especially if there’s a whole bunch of romance thrown into the mix. And that’s why we can’t help but love Outlander. Based on series of books by the same name, you’ll get a great dose of attractive Scottish accents (and actors) along with enthralling drama to keep you interested.

6. The Bachelorette, ABC

Let’s add this one (and all other forms of Bachelor spinoffs) to our guilty pleasure list. This reality show has been on forever, so you most likely already know the jist of one bachelorette being seduced by several extremely handsome and worthy suitors. We’d give our rose to this show any day for just being fun.

7. Pretty Little Liars, Freeform

Quick! It’s time to play catch up before Pretty Little Liars comes back for its 7th season. Part mystery mixed with comedy (and a ton of fashion), these girls make murder look amazingly fun, especially when there are so many twists to keep you coming back for more.

8. Hell on Wheels, AMC

When you’d rather spend your summer on something a little bit more intelligent, skip the reality shows or teen murder dramas and go straight to AMC. Hell on Wheels is a railroad western drama that focuses on a former soldier’s revenge. It’s now in its 5th season so there’s lots to watch for as the show picks up steam.

9. America’s Got Talent, NBC

We cannot forget about our favorite talent show. America’s Got Talent takes the best, the boldest, and often the weirdest Americans and puts them on stage to be judged. There’s so many star-making and awe-inspiring moments that you’ll probably spend all summer watching clips of this show on social media anyways!

10 Summer Date Ideas for College Students

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Long days and cool nights call for time spent with your significant other. Love is in the air this summer! Make these warm days of summer the time to rekindle an old flame or to ignite a new one by getting creative with your outings. By doing away with the standard dinner and a movie or breaking out of simply hanging in your homes, you can embrace the beautiful weather by trying one of these ten summer date ideas.

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1.   Rent a Boat

Get romantic with a trip down your local waterway. Renting a two-person canoe (or even a tandem kayak) at the local lake fits nicely into a college student budget. Boating is a romantic and sweet trip that mixes adventure, exploration, and relaxation all in one.

2.   Take Up a Sport

You don’t have to bend it like David Beckham to kick a soccer ball or homer like Babe Ruth to play baseball. Set up a weekly date night by joining a co-ed sports team. You’ll find it fun to play alongside your significant other and gain some great team building skills while you’re at it!

3.   Pick Fruit or Flowers

Many farms and orchards open their doors to eager pickers. Grab a basket and walk slowly through the picturesque strawberry fields or fill up on your share of peaches and pears. If you cannot find a location that allows you to pick your own, change it up with a visit to a farmer’s market.

4.   Picnic with a Theme

Boring picnics are a thing of the past for creative couples. Instead of sticking to peanut butter sandwiches and lemonade, reimagine the picnic menu by focusing on a theme. For example, try a Spanish tapas picnic with shrimp cooked in oil, a plate of patata ali oli, or Spanish potato salad. Your theme can also extend to your location such as having a seafood based beach theme.

5.   See a Drive-In Movie

Relive your parents’ and grandparents’ favorite date night by packing your car and heading to the nearest drive-in movie theater. Even though these locations are slowly fading away, you can create one in your own backyard! Use a projection screen, computer, and a large white sheet hooked to the side of your home. Replace the car with a deck or a picnic blanket and you’re set!

6.   Ride a Coaster

Thrill seekers can be romancers too! Pump up the adrenaline by purchasing tickets to your favorite amusement park. Take turns riding each others’ favorite rides or take bets on who screams the loudest!

7.   Hunt Down the Best

Sure, restaurants may claim they serve the best pizza, but do they really? Take the night (or the whole summer) to find out! Together, make a list of all of the restaurants you know that serve a certain food and then marathon through them. Take notes on your favorites and the biggest letdowns. At the end of the summer, you will be able to declare who has the best food in town!

8.   Geocache for Treasure

Geocache is like a modern day treasure hunt that requires patience, skill, and a little luck. Many use a free app that gives clues and coordinates to where geocaches (hidden containers) are located. It’s up to you and your partner to seek out and find where they are located. You’ll get a great sense of accomplishment when you find your first one, and you’ll be dying to take your partner on another hunt!

9.   Have Some Backyard Fun

Water balloon fights, crochet, slip and slides, and more! Your backyard can be a playful way to relive your favorite childhood activity while spending time with your date. Plus, it’s the perfect excuse to pull out the water guns from their hiding spot in the basement!

10.  Watch a Sunset

Early evenings are the perfect opportunity to take to an open area and watch the sun set. The clouds will turn from white to a combination of pinks, oranges, purples, and blues as the sun fades into the sky. This scene is designed to bring out the romance. Combine some of the other date ideas, such as the picnic or boat rental, to add to this sun-setting outing. By amping up the “wow” factor, your summer date will be memorable all year round.

two-hearts-on-the-sand

Where are you taking your date this summer? Do you have a favorite summer date you enjoyed? Give us some ideas in the comments below!