DIY Gift Guide: Mashup Monday

Happy Monday, everyone!


Christmas is coming!  I know that some of you are staunchly against even mentioning Christmas until Thanksgiving has passed (and that’s okay, we can agree to coexist peacefully), but it is never too early to be thinking about presents.

If you’re like me, the present budget is a little tight.  But fear not!  Here is a list of lovely little gifts that you can cheaply DIY for your favorite people.

1. For the coffee-lover, a personalized coffee mug.  Experiment with different colored Sharpies and get your Picasso on.

2.  For the tea connoisseur, Christmas tree-shaped tea bags filled with homemade loose-leaf tea.  OR you can just buy the tea pre-made.  Up to you.

3.  For the Narnia-lover, a lamppost snow globe.

4.  For the naturalist, beautiful wood coasters.

5.  For the little person in your life, a cuddly sock bunny.

6.  For the candle lover, a scented candle in a mason jar.

7.  For the Bath & Body Works addict, warm vanilla sugar body scrub.

8.  For the foodie, infused olive oil.

9.  For the stubbly stud, beard balm.

10.  For the traveler, map art.

11.  For you furriest friends, a warm, cozy bed.

Happy crafting, friends!




Thirsty Thursday

Thinking about trying something entirely different at Rinnova, but not sure what to get?  Try a frozen green matcha (that’s green tea, for those of you who don’t venture beyond coffee) with soy milk and a shot of raspberry.  It sounds weird, but it’s delicious- I promise!

Not feeling the fruit?  Try swapping out the raspberry for a shot of mint and a drizzle of chocolate syrup.  Instant mint chocolate matcha.

Bonus tip: green matcha tea is actually healthy for you.  Among other things, it is loaded with antioxidants and great for your heart health.

Don’t knock it ’til you try it.  Your tastebuds will be glad you did.

green matcha

Natural Remedies: Mashup Monday

Happy Monday, everyone!

Cold and flu season is upon us.  And while I am usually the first to reach for the NyQuil when the stuffy-nose strikes, there are also a lot of other (natural) things that I make sure I do in order to help my body recover as quickly as possible.  Just a friendly reminder, the things that your mom told you to do when you were sick as a kid still work!

1. SLEEP.  Sleep is the first ingredient in maintaining your overall health.  Your body repairs itself while you sleep, so even though course loads are tough right now, don’t miss out on the zzz’s your body needs to fight the bug.

2.  Eat some chicken noodle soup.  The hot soup helps your body stay warm, which conserves energy needed to fight your sickness off.  Also the fluids help keep you from drying out more than you already are.  And chicken noodle soup is delicious and tastes like home.

3.  Sore throat?  Gargle with warm salt water.  It kills the bacteria in your throat and the warmth of the water is soothing… so long as you don’t accidentally swallow some of it.

4.  Steam.  Boil water, pour into bowl.  Put a towel over your head and the bowl and breathe in the steam.  It’s also a great way to get a free steam facial- good for both your skin AND your nasal passages.

5.  Make a homemade tea from ginger root and lemon, which both fight inflammation.  Ginger can also help sooth nausea!

Hopefully none of you are sick or will become sick for the rest of the semester (fingers crossed!).  But if you do catch the cold or flu, try these out and get some much-deserved rest.



Thirsty Thursday: The Perfect Halloween Treat

This drink is perfect for Halloween and for Cedarville students!

Rinnova has outdone themselves this time. Truly. This drink is known as the “Boo-Tella”. It’s a chocolate-hazelnut chai topped with whipped cream and sprinkles. To make it even better, the sprinkles are purple, green and white!

I know I’ve posted about chocolate chai drinks before, but this just shows you how easy it is to twist a drink even more! For instance, add a little bit of spark to the drink with a shot of espresso. This also helps make the drink a little less sweet.

Get this drink while it lasts! Or just memorize what’s in it and you can request it again and again and again. Well…you get the picture.

So the question is, are you in for a trick? Or a treat?


A Little Local Lore: Mashup Monday

Happy Monday, everyone!

Since Halloween is this Friday, I figured that instead of posting tips for self-improvement I would share some local legends and ghost stories.  I love a good ghost story almost as much as I love healthy eating tips.  Almost.


Like all states, Ohio has its fair share of haunted houses and ghost stories.  You’ve probably heard several of them growing up.  I still remember the ghost stories I heard on the school bus as a little girl in my hometown near Indianapolis.  But did you know that some of the places we Cedarville students frequent have ghost stories of their own?  Clifton, Yellow Springs, Xenia, and our very own university (maybe?) all have their own allegedly haunted sites.

Below is a list of local haunts with a ghostly reputation- click on the name to read an article about the legends surrounding each location.

1.  John Bryan State Park, Clifton

2.  Antioch College, Yellow Springs

3.  Glen Helen Nature Preserve, Yellow Springs

4.  Crybaby Bridge, Xenia.

5.  Ye Olde Trail Tavern, Yellow Springs

6.  Spring Hill Elementary, Xenia

7.  Trebein Road, Byron

8.  Little Sugar Creek, Bellbrook

9.  Myers Hall, Wittenberg University, Springfield (bonus link for poem version with creepy background music)

10.  Cedar Lake, Cedarville University

Although many of these stories have historical basis, the actual presence of ghostly figures is just hearsay.  However if you are brave (and looking for something creepy to do this week), head out to one of these locations and take a look for yourself!  Just make sure that you have the proper permissions before you go exploring, and of course, be respectful of the places you visit.  If you aren’t, you never know who or what will come after you for it…

Happy Halloween!



Eat More Apples: Mashup Monday

Happy Monday, everyone!

Apple season is upon us and the orchards are open for business.  My advice for this week is this: go spend some well-deserved quality time at the orchard and buy an entire bag of apples.

Apples are not only delicious, but they are also one of the healthiest foods in the world.  Do yourself a favor and read here and here to learn all about the amazing benefits of an apple a day.

Once you’ve got your bag of locally grown apples in hand, here’s what to do with them.

1.  Eat them plain.  Apples are naturally crisp and refreshing, and if you have been eating Oreo’s they’re great for getting the black cookie crumbs out of your teeth.

2.  Make applesauce.  It’s so easy and you probably already have the ingredients in your dorm or apartment.  Recipe here.

3.  Dip those babies in caramel.  You can’t go wrong with caramel and apples.

4.  Make applewiches!  When I was little, my grandma used to make these for me as a snack.  All it takes is a couple apple slices and a slice of colby jack cheese in the middle.  Not only are they delicious, but they are also incredibly healthy.

5.  Got a crockpot?  Make apple butter.  It’s easy to make and it can be canned to last all year.  Recipe here.






How to Stress Less: Mashup Monday

Happy Monday, everyone!

In keeping with last week’s health theme and in the spirit of midterms, I’m going to share some helpful tips to stress less.

1. SLEEP.  The life of a college student is often riddled with late nights, early mornings, and all-nighters.  We wear our lack of sleep like a badge of honor.  Over time, lack of sleep can and often will cause serious health problems, including but not limited to heart failure, obesity, and cognitive impairment.  Short term, however, rest assured knowing that that all-nighter will do nothing for your test score unless you are either really smart or really lucky.  Lack of sleep hinders your brain’s ability to recall and process information.  The best thing you can do for yourself the night before a big test is put the books down and turn the lights off.  Your brain will thank you (and hopefully reward you) in the morning.  Be intentional about your beauty sleep, and your overall well-being will improve.

2.  Eat well.  Your body is a machine.  Put the good stuff in, get the good stuff out.  While it may be tempting to reach for pizza and soda while you study, DON’T.  When your body is stressed, it releases cortisol and adrenaline.  Did you know that there are foods that can combat that?  Just by making sure that you are eating the right stuff, you can significantly lower feelings of stress.  For more information, click here.

3.  Go for a walk.  If you read last Monday’s post, then you already know that exercise is a must for stress relief and overall health.  Get some fresh air, and release some endorphins while you’re at it.  Afterwards you will feel relaxed and ready to take on whatever the world throws at you.

4.  Play with kittens.  Fact: animals relieve stress.  Don’t believe me?  Read here and here.  Even though the articles specifically discuss the benefits of pet ownership, simply spending time with an animal can reduce anxiety, lower cortisol levels, and raise oxytocin levels (one of your body’s happy chemicals.)  Sometimes when I am stressed I go to Fetch at the Fairfield Commons.  Many of you may simply know Fetch as “the puppy store.”  Fetch is full of sweet, fluffy puppies that would love nothing more than to play with you.  They even have signs indicating which puppies are most in need of some love and attention.  Even if you can’t afford to or are unable to take a puppy home, the Fetch staff welcome playtime for the low-low price of $1, which goes to the Miami Valley Pit Crew, a non-profit animal rescue!

However, if you are able and willing to adopt your very own stress-relieving friend and can’t afford a buddy from Fetch (we are college students, afterall), I would direct you to a nearby humane society.  Check out the Humane Society Serving Clark County, or the Humane Society of Greene County to meet your new best friend.  Then, bask in the glow of their unconditional love and appreciation while you study and prepare for midterms stress-free.  It’s a win-win.

Study lots, drive safely this weekend, and DON’T STRESS!

‘Til next Monday, friends.



Dorm Fitness: Mashup Monday

Happy Monday, everyone!

It’s getting cold and rainy, which means less motivation to go to the gym and more motivation to watch TV in my sweatpants.  While I love watching TV in my sweatpants (and eating junk food while I do it), it does very little for my mood or the health of my body.  I’m going to take a wild guess and say that some of you know what I’m talking about.

What if I told you that you could get fit and improve your mood every day, in less than 20 minutes a day, without ever leaving your dorm room?  Interested?  Well then, I’m gonna learn you a thing.

Welcome to the Daily Workout Plan by Back on Pointe.  (Click below.)

Back on Pointe is a Tumblr blog chock full of resources to get fit without having to fight someone for an elliptical.  The site also features delicious recipes to help you feed your body the things it really needs.

Daily exercise has been proven to have innumerable health benefits, including but not limited to heart health, stress relief,  improved sleep, stronger bones and a better complexion.  Not to mention the fact that the burst of endorphins feels great.  All good things for a busy college student.   Do these exercises every day for a week and just try to not feel better.

Fight the couch potato urge and stay healthy out there! (Read here to learn about the dangers of being a couch potato!)



Not Your Typical Moonlight Madness

Hey there folks! It’s Friday yet again which means we bring you another Feature Friday post that will hopefully make you reach for the stars… send you to the moon… be outta this world…

Okay, I’m done trying to make you star struck by today’s post. Here’s our recommendation:

The ENS Observatory.

The Observatory is a great place to go on a CLEAR night for stargazing! Located inside a dome shaped structure attached to the ENS, the Observatory is a great way to put any night to good use. Pro tip: Look for irregular campus wide e-mails that alert you of the best nights to stargaze at the Observatory.

And while you’re at it, listen to this song by Coldplay to really make you feel like you’re on another planet. 




How do you know when the moon is going broke?

When it’s down to its last quarter.


How to Focus and Get Things Done: Mashup Monday

Happy Monday, everyone!


As college students, we have to battle a LOT of distractions to get things done.  Study time can be so easily interrupted by friends, text messages, Facebook, Netflix, or the sudden overwhelming desire to go walk around Walmart for fun (we’ve all been there).  With so many distractions vying for our attention, it becomes absolutely crucial to learn good study habits in order to focus and take care of business.


Below are links to two articles that I have found helpful in the never-ending quest for focus.


I hope these will be as helpful to you as they have been to me.  So get down to business and crank those papers out!


Happy studying!