International Roommate

10:30:00 AM

Do you remember when I didn't have a roommate and I felt lonely last semester? I'm not sure if I shared with you, that I chose to have an international roommate. I love learning about different cultures, and meeting new people, and I know this list is made a bit early yet into the semester, I thought I would share with you (in hopes that it will change) some pros and cons of having an International roommate. 

My roommate sleeps a lot. She's from Japan, and a trip from Japan to Wisconsin takes about a full day of travel. Napping a lot was to be expected in the first week or so. Naps in the room make me feel so bad about coming back from class and waking her up with the clicking door...oh well, I have to get in. 
*Tip: If you're the one doing traveling, make sure you get into your host countries timezone as soon as possible. When I went to Italy, my mom made sure we all knew not to sleep until it was at least 9pm Italy time, even though that meant staying up 24 hours, it honestly helped a lot.

You learn about another culture. This one is kind of a given, you live with someone who can barely speak the native language fluently, but still want to tell you all about their home life from time to time.

This one may be a personal one, but...they want to try new food...and asking to do so may not be the first thing they think of. I walked back into the room after going down the hall to fill my water bottle to my roommate standing on a chair with her hand full on in my cereal box...without asking.  
*Tip: After this incident, I had to have a roommate talk with my roommate to tell her I would rather have her ask than just help herself. She hasn't eaten my food since. I also put half the cereal in a separate container for her. It's important to have communication 

If an international student, like my roommate, is from a non-english speaking culture...there will be some big language barriers. My roommate has a very thick accent and sometimes doesn't use the correct words. There was a time when I thought she said "I like laundry" instead of "Lingerie." Along with coming into the room from a downpour and saying "I got caught in the rain." only to have her reply with an enthusiastic "Yes!"...alrighty... or when she had messaged me when I had gone home for the weekend asking for a 'sawing' kit instead of a 'sewing' kit. Little bit of a difference. 

I wasn't sure if this was a Pro or a Con, but they might not even try to talk to you. My roommate is so talkative when my parents are around, but when it's just us, we might not even talk all week. Just come and go as we please. This is kind of nice in a way because it's quiet when I want to study, but at the same time our conversations are 5 maybe 10 word's like she doesn't know how to ask a question back. Oh well. (Someone remind me that I'm not invisible) 

You might not get a lot of private time. I wish I could just come up to the room after class or meetings and just relax and watch television. But 98% of the time my roommate is in the room. I love when she leaves to take her hour long showers or meals. Those little bits are heaven to me. 

*Tip: Plan trips home! I love going home this semester just for that private time where I can 

They might not even try to be friends with you. They might stick to their friend group from their home country and that's okay. It might be disappointing if you looked forward to befriending your roommate and having adventures with them. It's okay though, I've made friends on my floor and in classes. It all works out. 

Whenever I do need to talk to my roommate about something important, such as turning the lights down at a certain time, or not eating my food and touching my stuff, I have found that I tend to ask other people that what I am saying isn't rude or completely arrogant, because I want my roommate to have a good experience...but not at the expense of my lack of sleep and food. I must confess though, that it is really nice to not only go home and sleep in my big comfy bed, but to also get away from my roommate! I know some of my family members might want to meet her, but I am in no way obligated to bring her home. I'm not her mother, she's here with her friends and has her own schedule. (Getting up at 7 am to eat breakfast at 8 am, studying all day long and never leaving the room). Like I said in the beginning, hopefully my list will change. Also shout out to Anna for listening to my complaining about my roommate whenever she wakes up before the sun. (and everyone else you're all rockstars too). 

Have you ever had an international student living with you before? How was it? 
Any tips for me? Hope your weeks are all going great! Sorry this post turned out to be quite wordy...
Here's some cuteness to brighten your day!


Taste of Autumn

12:56:00 PM

It's actually October, can you believe it? We only have 2 more months left of 2015. What a year.
With October, comes crisp weather, colorful leaves and pumpkin.everything.
I went home a few weeks ago, mostly to celebrate my dads birthday and also get away from my roommates crazy sleeping schedule. The drive from Uni to my hometown isn't very long and I was very excited to use my mom and step-dads new oven!
We were making Pumpkin Cookies! These are always a family favorite this time of year, and they're delicious to eat!
Pumpkin Cookies

Here's what you'll need:

Two bowls
A mixer
2.5 cupes all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1.5 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup butter (softened) 
1 cup Pumpkin puree
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Frosting (you can use vanilla or cream cheese frosting) 

Preheat Oven to 350* Fahrenheit, (176 Celsius)
Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in one of your bowls
Beat sugar and butter in your other bowl until well blended, beat in pumpkin, egg and vanilla until smooth.
Add in dry ingredients

Line baking sheets with parchment paper (or you can grease them, I prefer parchment paper because it's less of a mess to clean up after! )
Drop dough in tablespoon amounts and gently press down just a bit.
They don't spread too much!
Bake cookies for 15-18 minutes. I did mine for 15 and they were perfectly moist! 
Autumn food
Now you've got naked pumpkin cookies! ( I had actually not pressed mine down as much but they still turned out nicely!)
Here comes the fun part.
With whatever frosting you've decided to use, spread just a bit over the tops of the cookies

How beautiful, right?

Letting the cookies sit for a bit actually helped in bringing out the pumpkin flavor, and as difficult as it is not not actually eat them fresh out of the oven, it's worth the wait!
I hope you give this recipe a try! I cannot wait until Christmas to bake more holiday cookies! If you have any recipes you think I should try out, leave them for me in the comments! If you do try these out make sure to take a photo and send it to me! 

What is your favorite fall food? I hope the weather hasn't cooled down too much for you! 
Have a great rest of your weeks! 


What Alice Forgot: Book Review

9:30:00 AM

I've finished a second book this year, though this took a bit longer than my over-the-summer book as I'm at University. This book is called "What Alice Forgot" and it's by Liane Moriarty. The only reason I have actually finished this one is probably because it's still the beginning of the semester and my pile of homework is actually manageable. 

Forgot Book

It's also partially due to the weather, and I can walk the ten minutes to lower campus and sit down on the lawn while the sun is still bright and the air is still warm. This charming little book is cleverly written and very enjoyable. I was heartbroken when Alice was, I laughed when her friend called her a 'silly sausage' and I definitely wanted a taste of that Lemon Meringue pie. Liane writes so nicely, it was hard not to picture every part of the book. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and I think you would too. So I hope you give it a chance if you ever find it in your local bookstore! I'm really glad I picked it up off the "beach reads" section at Barnes and Nobel, and even though I didn't read it at a beach (sadly), I got to enjoy it in the sunshine anyway! 

Are you enjoying any books right now? Hope you're all having fantastic weeks! Make sure to tell me what you think of this or other books in the comments! I love to hear from you!