When in College

When in College

Just a VCU girl living through her Filofax, spending time with two bunnies, good friends, and one special boy.

Keeping the Visits from Getting too Expensive

When you haven’t seen your special someone in a long time, and they’re finally coming to visit, there’s probably a hundred things you want to do with them. 

I know when my boyfriend comes to visit I want to show him every restaurant I love in the city, walk to all of the secret spots downtown, take him to the best desert shops or even the books and bikes thrift store. But I can’t. 

When it comes down to it, it’s just to expensive to go to all of the places I want to. It’s hard to figure out how to successfully use the little bit of time you get to spend together, whether it’s a weekend or a week or a month. 

So here’s how I have learned to handle it. 

  • PLAN AHEAD!

This way you can figure out when you should eat out and when you should stay in and cook. Figure out together all the things you want to show them before they come, so when they finally arrived you feel a little bit less rushed and hectic. Or if you like the unexpected, figure things out as you go. Just keep in mind, you can’t do every thing!

  • FIGURE THINGS OUT FINANCIALLY

Blah blah blah money blah blah blah. But seriously. If one of the reasons you and your special other are having a hard time visiting one another is funding, try to create an almost free visit. All though gas, plane tickets, or a bus trip will always be an expense, maybe they can car pool with somebody else. Sometimes other people from my boyfriend’s college are coming to visit my school and he has the opportunity to catch a ride (for a lot cheaper). My school has Facebook pages for people looking for rides; everyone wants a cheaper trip.  

And remember, you don’t have to spend money when you’re together! Use your groceries at home for your meals, go on walks, explore campus or your city, and cuddle while watching movies. Don’t feel like you have to spend every moment doing something super special. 

  • SOME OF THE BEST THINGS ARE FREE

I don’t know about your city, but most of the coolest things in RVA are free. There’s the Virginia Museum of the Fine Arts, Belle Isle, Byrd Park, Maymont, walking to see all the street art, and touristing in the city (even when you live there). Trying touring your own city! You’ve got to show them new things anyways. 

  • REMEMBER WHAT’S IMPORTANT

It’s about spending time together, not necessarily doing things together. Do what makes you two happy whether it’s an expensive dinner or a night on the couch. Don’t feel like you have to do certain things when they come or anything should be expected from you. Do what makes you both happy!

How to Create Your Own Filofax Pages

When I was shopping around for a basic Filofax DO1P, I never saw exactly what I wanted (or if I did it was pricey). Eventually my boyfriend intercepted and said, “babe why don’t you just make them yourself.”

Here’s the honest answer. I’m lazy. I figured I wouldn’t know how to make the pages the right size, make them print correct, and it just seemed complicated. 

When I was downloading some of the basic freebies from Philofaxy, I noticed that the word documents are editable. I deleted everything in them except for the frame of each page (allowing me to insert anything I wanted in that little box, keeping it the right size). 

All it took was a couple of text boxes, a bit of clip art, and bang I had something to get me rolling until I find something better. I write the date in the top box and anything special about that day, in the box below it on the left I write meetings and people to call or email. Finally, then there’s my to do and my schedule on the right!

So just so you guys know too, there’s always an easy way to create your own pages!

What Not to Do When Building a Bunny Hutch

Not too long ago my boyfriend and I got the idea in our head that we could build our own bunny hutch. After just a little online research I learned that we could use just about any piece of furniture and turn it into a cute bunny home. 

What we ended up with was this:

For some reason my boyfriend and I really wanted a door (I guess it made us feel empowered and fancy) but in the end it made no sense for us to install the ramp on the inside of the shelving, rather than having it come straight out onto the open floor. That way Bunny could have had more room to play. We saved the second shelf for supplies (which worked out really nicely) and the playpen was a cube set from Kmart (20$). 

I also wish that we hadn’t used felt because our bunny tends to eat it and it makes him not feel well. We were concerned about him slipping on the wooden shelves. Looking back we should have used carpet for all three rather than just the floor and bottom shelf. This is something my boyfriend and I will have to fix later.

After all of this I do recommend building your own bunny hutch, because it can save you so much money. A book shelf like this is 15 dollars a Walmart and the extra wood we bought for the door and ramp only cost me 6. All in all we spent around 40 dollars. It is only big enough for one small bunny, but using different furniture you could definitely make a larger one! 

If anyone has any advice for building outdoor hutches please let me know! That’s our next Bunny project!

Things to Consider When Buying a Bunny

Meet Potter. Although I’m so happy that I have him now, there are a lot of things I wish I had known back in the day when I was searching for my perfect bunny. 

  • DOES THE BREEDER KNOW WHAT THEIR DOING? 

Although I got Potter from a breeder who breed bunnies for shows, they were kept in terrible conditions. When I saw how small the cage was (that he was being kept in with three other bunnies) I couldn’t wait to get him out of there. When we got my second bunny Dumbledore, they had advertised themselves online as bunnies breeders. Once I got to their home, they were in a horrible neighborhood and would only bring the bunny to us at the door step. It was clear he had been abused as well. If possible, get your bunny from a previous owner (maybe they have to give it up for personal reasons) and avoid breeders and common pet stores that mistreat their animals.

  • HAS THE BUNNY BEEN SOCIALIZED?

We had a very difficult time socializing both of my bunnies. They weren’t used to a playful environment and although I wanted to cuddle and let them play around my room, it was months before I could do that. It took weeks for our bunnies to feel comfortable with us petting them and even longer for them to fully trust us. There were times I wish I had waited longer to find a good healthy bunny on craigslist that came from a healthy family, but am happy to have my two love bugs now. 

  • HOW OLD IS THE BUNNY?

It’s not about your bunny being too old but your bunny being too young. You shouldn’t take a bunny home with you before it is two months old (at the least). She gave us Potter at a month old, and I didn’t know at the time that he was too young to be taken away. 

  • BUNNIES ARE SOCIAL ANIMALS

Bunnies can get lonely and usually like some company. We eventually got two bunnies and they played nicely until a month ago when they started to nip at each other. Be careful when introducing two new bunnies, but keep in mind that you should not get just one!

  • BUNNIES ARE EXPENSIVE & TIME CONSUMING

Don’t get a bunny if you’re thinking it’ll be a cheaper pet than a dog or cat! Although we do spoil our bunnies with toys and treats, they need pellets, hay, a large cage, (ours has a play pen), sometimes they need bedding, a litter box, and much more. Always research everything you’ll need and set up before the bunny comes home! They need love and care, and someone who will come home and play with them at the end of the day. Their cages should be cleaned often as well. Make sure you are in a good place to care for them. When I got mine I was working two jobs (one full-time) and wasn’t home often enough for my little friend. I wish I had planned that differently. 

Before my I left to move to Richmond, I made my boyfriend a care package! A few days after I left he picked it up from my house. I usually don’t like the “open when” cards because they seem cheesy or over done to me. But I didn’t mind making these ones! The little box with the couple and words on the back is a pack of gum! I got the pillow pet for five dollars from five below, printed the picture for free, and used some of my cough drops! It’s a cheap, cute way to show some appreciation to your special other while you’re apart. c:

There are couple things I’d be pretty lost with out and use every day!
1. Forever 21 has been having great sales on their active wear pants! I got a pair almost just like the ones pictured for only 10 dollars. They’re great for the gym, class, walking around campus, or late nights in the library. I good pair of sweat pants and yoga pants is essential to me. Heh.
2. Planners are honestly just how I organize my syllabi and to do lists. Although I use a Filofax, usually colleges hand out free ones around the campus book stores. 
3. Last year I bought a new cute backpack, but honestly find myself wishing I had bought one like a North Face. With a place for you water on the side, a lot of space and compartment, how comfy they are, and especially how long they last, they seem like such a good deal!
4. I have two pairs of Nikes that I wear around campus and to the gym all the time! It’s hard to always wear flats or cute sandals when you have to walk from your apartment. 
5. I looooove using a desk calendar rather than a monthly in my planner. It’s much larger, can be easily color coded, and has easy access when you’re studying in your room. I got a really cute floral green one from Walmart for about 5 dollars, but they’re at dollar tree too! 
6.  Snacks are life. I always carry around chips like these especially when I know I’ll be in the library for a while. On campus food is expensive so I try to supply my own when I can. 

There are couple things I’d be pretty lost with out and use every day!

1. Forever 21 has been having great sales on their active wear pants! I got a pair almost just like the ones pictured for only 10 dollars. They’re great for the gym, class, walking around campus, or late nights in the library. I good pair of sweat pants and yoga pants is essential to me. Heh.

2. Planners are honestly just how I organize my syllabi and to do lists. Although I use a Filofax, usually colleges hand out free ones around the campus book stores. 

3. Last year I bought a new cute backpack, but honestly find myself wishing I had bought one like a North Face. With a place for you water on the side, a lot of space and compartment, how comfy they are, and especially how long they last, they seem like such a good deal!

4. I have two pairs of Nikes that I wear around campus and to the gym all the time! It’s hard to always wear flats or cute sandals when you have to walk from your apartment. 

5. I looooove using a desk calendar rather than a monthly in my planner. It’s much larger, can be easily color coded, and has easy access when you’re studying in your room. I got a really cute floral green one from Walmart for about 5 dollars, but they’re at dollar tree too! 

6.  Snacks are life. I always carry around chips like these especially when I know I’ll be in the library for a while. On campus food is expensive so I try to supply my own when I can. 

1. Happy Baby Pencil Case & Wallet Duo
How could I resist this when it holds so many possibilities? From holding chap sticks and my bank cards, to washi tapes and stickies, this thing would be perfect either way.
 2. Filofax Clear Dividers Top Tab- Cute Giraffe
I <3 giraffes. And hello, they have poka-dots. 
3. Rapesco 6 Hole Punch- Adjustable Punch
I’m sure anyone with a Filofax would want this baby. Punching one whole at a time is going to get pretty old, pretty fast.
4. Chibi Totoro Paper Clip Bookmark
Even cooler than the Kate Spade paper clips I keep seeing!
5. Personal Size Undated Planner
Having these inserts in my planner is a dream for me. The page fits my school needs perfectly and is so simple, it’s perfect. 

6. Reversible Kiki’s Delivery Service Charm
Right now there’s a little Hello Kitty dangling from mine. This Kiki would look adorable next to it!

1. Happy Baby Pencil Case & Wallet Duo

How could I resist this when it holds so many possibilities? From holding chap sticks and my bank cards, to washi tapes and stickies, this thing would be perfect either way.

 2. Filofax Clear Dividers Top Tab- Cute Giraffe

I <3 giraffes. And hello, they have poka-dots. 

3. Rapesco 6 Hole Punch- Adjustable Punch

I’m sure anyone with a Filofax would want this baby. Punching one whole at a time is going to get pretty old, pretty fast.

4. Chibi Totoro Paper Clip Bookmark

Even cooler than the Kate Spade paper clips I keep seeing!

5. Personal Size Undated Planner

Having these inserts in my planner is a dream for me. The page fits my school needs perfectly and is so simple, it’s perfect. 

6. Reversible Kiki’s Delivery Service Charm

Right now there’s a little Hello Kitty dangling from mine. This Kiki would look adorable next to it!

OK…I know what you’re thinking…

Why would I ever buy that ugly thing on the right!?

It’s much more of a bathroom brown in real life (my poppy even looks bright pink), and it’s originally  a Buxton from Walmart. 

So really…why did I get it? For the inserts! I found this filled bad boy at CHKD Thrift for just 98 cents. 

I definitely feel like paying 98 cents for a planner filled with inserts is a pretty good deal. With extra note pages, project planners, lined pages, and especially a full alphabetized contact and telephone section I feel pretty good. It would have cost me a lot more than 98 cents to buy all that or even print it!

What a good find! Now if anyone wants the planner…just let me know. HAHA!

Here’s a quick free, toilet paper roll DIY for your bunnies c:

Good for: snack, tug of war, and tossing around. 

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