After six weeks of your first year in college, you’ve probably grown and matured more than you realize. You have had all types of experiences since arriving during August’s blistering hot move-in day, like attending your first college lectures, going to your first social events with new friends, and having your first college prelims. It’s time to take a short break to refuel for the next part of the semester, and if you’re going home this weekend, you are probably really excited to do the following.
1Go to a real grocery store (because you’re sick of Nasties)
After weeks of grabbing whatever’s on hand at Nasties for your late night study snacks, fall break is the best time to stop at a real supermarket and stock up on family-sized chip bags to eat by yourself in your dorm room. Especially as the weather gets colder, it’s important to stockpile enough food to get you through the months ahead
2Grab everything you forgot the first time
Everyone forgets something when they pack up to come back to Cornell in August, but if you’re a freshman then you definitely forgot something at home that you want here. Whether it’s your dinosaur pillow pet or a dozen more pairs of socks, you know your Cornell needs better than you did when you left home in August. Your parents are probably sick of sending you packages with the stuff you left behind, so fall break is a good time to reflect on how you are living and what else you might find useful.
3Have personal space
The worst part of being a freshman is sharing a bathroom with forty-five other people, so fall break is a great time to appreciate your home. There’s nothing like showering in your own shower or sleeping in your own bed, so kudos to you for going without them for the first time. They’ll be waiting for you as soon as you get home.
4Catch some Zs
After mountains of prelims and homework, nothing’s better than being able to sleep in over fall break. Catching up on sleep is just as important as catching up with your friends and family, especially after a stressful round of testing at school. Just remember not to waste entire days cuddled up under your covers–as cozy as that might seem.
5Eat real food
Cornell dining is pretty good, but nothing compares to your favorite meal at home. Whether you request your dad’s special homemade lasagna or a bite at your favorite home restaurant, your family will probably give in because they missed you. Use this opportunity to suggest something you can’t get on campus–there are two more months before winter break, so milk it for what it’s worth.
6Get some homework done (or relax)
This is probably your first time traveling home from Cornell, but don’t worry. Even if your travel time is lengthy, you still have four full days without classes. Try to get some homework done on your ride so that you have less to do at home. If you need time to veg (or you can’t read on the bus), grab your computer, headphones, and your favorite downloaded movie, and the time will fly faster than you can say, “Fall break, here I come!”
7Use that muscle memory
After hitching rides with friends and running after the buses, there’s nothing like having some control over your method of travel. While at Cornell you may need to plan 25 minutes to walk across campus to Collegetown, at home you can probably drive to a local shopping center in half the amount of time. Enjoy the freedom of your driver’s license at home and reminisce about high school as you drive around your town and remember all the adventures you took with your friends.
8Brag to your senior friends
Do you miss your high school friends in the year below you? They probably miss you too–and they are dying to hear what you think of college. If you get sick of your family after spending a few hours, remember that these kids are home and are probably sick of their college applications. Distract them by telling them all the reasons they should apply to Cornell.
9Reunite with your family
Last but not least, remember to spend time with your immediate family–the people whose lives have changed the most with your going off to college. Be a positive role model for your younger siblings and try not to be irritated with your parents’ questions; they missed you and want to hear about your life. Enjoy the family dynamic that doesn’t translate over text–even if it means joining in on family game night.