Even though it’s been two years since I’ve graduated college (ew I’m cringing as I write that), I still mark a “new year” at the end of August/beginning of September. It’s probably because I’ve been accustomed to the academic calendar for the majority of my life, but as soon as there’s a hint of fall, that back-to-school excitement (even if I’m not going back to school!) sets in.
Well, this year is a tad different considering I am going back to school (sorta). This week, I’m starting grad school part time, so I’m reliving all the pre-school jitters that I’ve missed the past two years. In honor of the reinstatement of homework and papers in my life, this likes & favorites is all about the things I’m loving as I start this new school year. Even if you’re not going back to school, most of the things on this list are great if you’re looking for a fresh start this fall.
Back At It (with a Trendy Backpack)
The most obvious back-to-school staple is a backpack (of course). Fun fact: I had the same backpack from freshman year of high school alllll the way through senior year of college. The only reason I got rid of it was because the strap legitimately ripped & fell off (RIP). My sister had a Herschel backpack for all of college and highly recommended it, so I figured I’d give it a shot. I love it. It’s a perfect size, the straps are super comfortable & there’s a laptop sleeve inside. Plus, all their backpacks come in a bunch of different colors. I have the Retreat Backpack in Windsor Wine (pictured above). You can snag one here.
A Better Version of the S’well Bottle Everyone Keeps Talking About
As I’m sure you know, S’well bottles are all the rage right now–and they can be hella expensive. The annoying thing is, they do actually keep your cold beverages very cold and your hot beverages very hot for long periods of time. I was in the market for a new water bottle & considered S’well, but couldn’t really justify spending upwards of $45 for it. Luckily, because Target is legitimately heaven on earth, they have S’ip by S’well water bottles that have all the same benefits of regular S’well bottles but are slimmer (which I like) and don’t cost an arm and a leg. Perfect for workouts or long days in class. The only * I should mention is that you can’t put them in the dishwasher, so just clean them by hand with hot, soapy water.
Anyone who knows me knows that I live & die by my planner. I refuse to go digital–there’s something about a hard copy planner that instantly puts me at ease. (I also have a bad habit of buying multiple planners throughout the year because I can’t help myself, but that’s a different story). Obviously, starting grad school means keeping track of assignments…which means I need a good planner. I did the whole Lily Pulitzer thing senior year, and while her planners are great, they’re kind of big & clunky. Once again I was at Target (surprise) and stumbled upon their new line of Ashley Goldberg for Blue Sky planners. They’re AWESOME. I really like them because they have a monthly & weekly view, and the weekly view comes with daily checklists so you can get all your sh*t together. I even convinced my co-worker to buy one. Check out my favorites here, here, here & here.
The Best Pens for Lefties
Little known fact about me is that I’m left-handed (some of my best friends didn’t realize that until this year, if you can believe it). I love being lefty (it’s unique~), but it does come with its fair share of struggles, including but not limited to: sucky left-handed scissors, right-handed desks & constantly smudging as I write notes. Pertaining to smudging my notes, I’m very particular about pens. I’ve always liked Bic’s traditional blue pens, but now they have smooth gel pens that dry instantly which prevents smudging. And they come in a bunch of pretty colors. You can pick some up here.
*HEY THERE! JUST WANTED TO MENTION THAT I RECEIVED THESE PRODUCTS AS A GIFT, BUT ALL OPINIONS ARE 100% MY OWN. THANK YOU FOR SUPPORTING THE BRANDS WHO SUPPORT AMPERSAND!
Your New To-Do List
I’ve definitely featured the any.do app before, but it’s worth mentioning again. I’ve tried out a number of different to-do list apps & any.do is by far my favorite. It’s simple & streamlined–perfect for keeping all your running to-do lists in one place. You can prioritize items, add sub-notes or set a reminder for when it’s due. It also syncs to your computer so you’ll never lose a list again. Download it here (ps. it’s free).
Liking getting back in the classroom & Favoriting being a nerd again. &.