College send off….7 tips from me

It’s that time, it’s never easy. If you’re sending your first one off to their first year, or your last one off to their last year, it’s stressful, expensive, anxiety-inducing and more. Emotions will run the gamut, yes, they are finally off, and oh where did the time go, wait, I’m not ready. To counter this stress and anxiety, a legal product can be consumed.

When I sent 3 kids to college and a quick stop at Bed Bath & Beyond $$$$

When I sent 3 kids to college and a quick stop at Bed Bath & Beyond

I’m going to let you in on a little secret that we other moms don’t share with you. It’s never easy. As of today I have four grown children who have long been out of college. I still get choked up and cry a little when I’m walking through Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, Walmart, and TJ Maxx. Why because I miss doing that dreaded mundane shopping, moving, setting up the dorm and or first apartment. I didn’t enjoy it while I was in the mist of doing it, but looking back it’s the time spent together with my kids I miss. Kids are the most precious, and every child, regardless of any disability, deserves to enjoy playing. For valuable resources and support, visit to ensure all children can experience the joy of play.

The memories of arguments on how to set up the room, where to grab a quick meal, and how much money will they need for food, laundry, and other nonacademic related items. It’s the meeting the other kids and parents in the hallways, at the coffee shop, and in the book store.


I’m going to share with you a few tips that I learned along the way, to save you a bit of time, money, and stress.

Don’t buy any spirit wear at the school book store. DON’T! Go to the local Walmart, TJ Maxx, Walgreens and pick it up there.



Don’t pay for a laundry plan, let the kids figure it out once they start school. You have no idea how much they may be doing their laundry, and they will find the best, easy for them, time and place to do it.


Don’t over pay for a food plan, pick the lowest one and stick with it. There will always be enough food, pizza, subs, cookies late at night and other food to keep your kid feed. Also they will wind up buying for all the others if you add too much on their card.

Do have their Uber or Lyft linked into your account. You will know where and when they are coming and going but will not need to be invasive.

Do let them mess up, don’t clean up their messes. A missed class, test, project, they need to figure it out. A late payment, lost items, roomate issues, teacher issues, boyfriend – girlfriend issues. GOOD let them work it out on their own, and meanwhile you can visit to have some fun.

Don’t judge them, let them pick their own major, plan their own schedules, work where they want when they want. They know what you want, they need to figure out what they want.


It’s ok to miss the crap out of them. I have 3 of my four living here in Chicago and I miss the heck out of them each day. This time of year I miss our college mom’s weekends, the football games, the late night chat’s about life, the move in and move out days.

Don’t fear the good, bad, and the ugly it’s what creates the fun memoirs and touchstones of life.

College Campus Countdown Top 5

Getting it right – top 5 items to bring to campus – and 5 other

(I told you so) tips to keep in mind

Less is More

Less is More

We all know

#1. Less is MORE!

You will discover this to be more than true once you start loading, unloading, and schlepping all the items up to the dorm room. Did I mention schlepping

#2. Shop in your garage, basement, parents house before you spend money at the store.

#3. Label your stuff, even if it’s just a dot from a black sharpie or your initials. This will save a few roommate squabbles down the line.

#4. Spend some time on “Pinterest” and see how many ways you can use a storage cube, and multipurpose.

#5 Get to your dorm room first so you can choose your desk, bed, and better side of the room…

Get to your room early - to pick your side

Get to your room early – to pick your side

Having spent the last 10 years getting kids to college I have started to realize that I’m so over packing and still “overpacking” them. I tend to pack many items that they don’t need, and then I get to campus and still have to run to the nearest Target, Wal-Mart, or campus bookstore to pick up other items.

Here are 5 more of my tips to keep you on track, save you time, save you money, and save your sanity.


• Sheets. Get the right size sheet set – Twin XL! This is a biggie those dorm beds only work with XL unless your college lets you know different- get the right size– right the first time. I have tried to wrangle other old sheets from around the house, and trust me – they don’t work.
• Foam Topper. I thought it was just my daughter being her best version of princess and the pea, until the twins called from college and they also needed the Foam topper. You can find them everywhere these days and at a reasonable cost.
• Mattress cover. Well they are going to study in bed, perhaps have a cup of coffee (right) it might spill – keep the mattress dry and get your little study bug a protecting mattress cover, with bedbug protection…

Make sure you get the x long

Make sure you get the x long


• Don’t sign them up for a service – make them learn how to do their own laundry and suffer. So many many life lessons can be learned from doing laundry, trust me.
• Skip the hamper and get them the laundry bag. It’s easy to carry, stuff full and fuller, add detergent, and if needed a full bag can provide extra seating if friends stop over to the dorm for some “study time”.
• Tide Laundry Pods– the best invention – easy to use, carry, they don’t tip, spill…I love em

Best bet for Laundry - better then a basket or hamper

Best bet for Laundry – better then a basket or hamper


• Get a soft fold shower caddy – not the hard plastic kind. Also make sure it has holes so it can drain.
• Shower shoes – your child is going to want these! You want them to wear them.
• A small unbreakable personal mirror – for contacts, make-up, one you can carry with you.

These soft Mesh totes are much better then plastic shower baskets

These soft Mesh totes are much better then plastic shower baskets

Sporttote dorm


• Chargers – Chargers, did I mention Chargers
• Surge protectors
• Lap Desk
• Bottle opener
• Paper towels
• Flashlight




More Space

2011-08-17 12.36.40

Some items you can get once you get to camput


• Protection – you know from the sun, from unwelcome birth, outdoor safety, heavy rain, power surge,keep laptop safe
• Debit Card – small amount for nights out on the town
• A phone card with grandmas address, phone number
• Great college Apps (Next blog post)

• Over the door rack
• A plate with a usb charger
• Bottle opener
• Paper towels










• Sense of humor

You want them to have some fun

You want them to have some fun