Heading to college brings up many emotions, including excitement and a little trepidation–as we all remember from our own experiences. Having been through this twice with my own children, I know it is as much a transition for parents as it is for their child. While prepping for the big day may feel limited for parents to buying linens, clothes, and toiletries (and paying that tuition bill!), incorporating elements from home into your son or daughter’s dorm room can be very comforting to your college freshman in the face of all these changes.
Along with making new friends, adapting to classes, and entering a more independent lifestyle, your child will be facing a whole new set of opportunities,obstacles and people-especially their roommate. Incorporating some of the following creature comforts can give your college-bound student’s dorm a sense of home that defies distance.
PICTURES: What is better when you need a lift than a picture. I bought a frame that held a bunch of different pictures and filled it with photos of good times with friends, family, pets, and favorite vacations. Looking at these pictures will put a smile on your child’s face when that little bit of homesickness creeps in.
FAVORITE BOOKS: The empty shelves in a college dorm can seem daunting. Yes, they will be filling them with required reading but a few favorites can give your child a sense of comfort.
SOMETHING SENTIMENTAL: Despite the fact that the last thing any dorm room needs is an influx of knick-knacks, bringing an item with sentimental value can be of huge value to your college freshman. A beautiful conch shell found after hours of searching a beach? Bring it. A coffee mug bought on vacation that makes your child smile? Bring it. Meaningful items can definitely give a dorm room a more homey feel.
BEDDING FROM HOME: Though you cannot provide the comfort of your student’s own bed, you can bring their pillow or a mattress topper for the rock-hard dorm bed. Every little bit helps!
FOOD: Obviously, it is impractical to send your child with a year’s worth of local perishables. However, when dropping off, visiting, or sending a care package to your college student it might be worth taking a trek to their favorite local market or food store. Specific and specially made snacks, trail mixes, or other food items can surely make your college kid happy, and remind them that no matter how great college is, there is no place like home.