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Old 07-23-2013, 05:40 PM   #31
LisaR
 
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I think we have way too much stuff, but I honestly don't know what to get rid of. Right now everything is in our dining room and you can't even see our table!

We bought plastic containers to go under the bed, but we just returned them this weekend. They reminded me too much of toy boxes where you would just toss crap in them and never be able to find what you need. Instead, we are using these:
http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/30219281/

We have them labeled so things like toiletries are all in one and towels are in another and so on.

We have a comforter from Overstock (full size for a twin bed because she wanted it to hang down lower to cover the stuff she stores under her bed. A friend suggested this). One set of sheets from BBB (400 count), towels, a lamp, collapsible chair, rug, wall decorations, laundry soap, etc. We also have a ton of kitchen stuff since she has a kitchenette (coffee pot, slow cooker, blender, paper and plastic plates, utensils, dish soap, dish towels, and on and on). I swear we are going to need a U-haul to get it down there. But I keep looking at the pile wondering where I can cut back and I just end up thinking of something else she needs!
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Old 07-23-2013, 06:08 PM   #32
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[/QUOTE]
3M command hooks..My kids use them to hang towels, swiffers, backpacks, purses and bathrobes.
The large hooks seem to be used most.[/QUOTE]

the above. and hair dryer, also use them to hang up the over door organizer on a wall for misc. stuff.

We found packages with different sizes...we also used the little ones to keep electric wires for her soniccare toothbursh and clarisonic charger tucked along the wall.
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Old 07-23-2013, 06:11 PM   #33
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Hi Katy Belle! I think you're the brilliant person who suggested gray linens in the first place! I love it. My DS isn't going to college until next year, but I don't want to break the bank trying to get stuff all at once next summer so I'm trying to pick up some things now as they go on sale.

Those gray jersey sheets from Target -- how do they feel? I saw them on sale on their website, and was going to stop in and see if they were the same price in the store. On sale, they're a good deal cheaper than the charcoal gray ones I got last year at Walmart when DS went to stay at his chosen college for a summer program. Would love to go ahead and pick up 1 more set of sheets if they're decent, since jersey is the only kind he likes.
The jersey sheets seem great. Soft. DS16 took them to Band Camp last week and he really liked them. DS18 is really hot, hoping they aren't too hot for him. I plan to get another type as his second set, in case he hates these. If he does, they can just wait for his brother in a couple more years!
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Old 07-23-2013, 07:10 PM   #34
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Don't forget a power strip! Between printers computer chargers lamps etc not a lot of outlets in a dorm room

A swifter is also something good to have, easy to clean the floors with
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Old 07-23-2013, 08:16 PM   #35
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So guess what I'll be buying....an AIR CONDITIONER!! I never thought to consider that dorms might not be air conditioned. My D has a medical condition in which she doesn't sweat effectively. She gets very sick if she overheats. We had to complete disability paperwork and get her doctor to do the same. She is approved for an AC, but we have to buy it and install it. I've never installed a window AC in my life! Should be quite interesting.....
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Old 07-23-2013, 09:12 PM   #36
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So guess what I'll be buying....an AIR CONDITIONER!! I never thought to consider that dorms might not be air conditioned. My D has a medical condition in which she doesn't sweat effectively. She gets very sick if she overheats. We had to complete disability paperwork and get her doctor to do the same. She is approved for an AC, but we have to buy it and install it. I've never installed a window AC in my life! Should be quite interesting.....

My DD had her own AC as well for the first two years. We had to buy it, but the school did the installation and charged us $300 extra for the electric bill! Make sure you check their size requirements as well. The first year she had a room mate and she thought she had won the room mate lottery because of DD's AC!
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Old 07-23-2013, 09:53 PM   #37
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On the jersey sheets from Target. I bought a set for us a while back and ended up giving them to my DS because they were just too hot. I roasted every night in them. They didn't seem to wear too badly, but I never could get past the hot factor.
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Old 07-24-2013, 09:42 AM   #38
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Thanks for the suggestions. I keep hearing to buy plenty of 3M command hooks but am wondering what kids use them for? And is there a need for the smaller sized ones or just buy all one size - biggest - and use for everything?
One of the biggest uses of them is to run cabling along walls and around door frames and closets. In all likelihood the network/phone plugs for the room will only be on one side of the dorm room. If you're on "the other side" you'll need to "run some cable" to your kid's side of the room. If the hook-ups are on the hallway wall, both kids might have to run cable. The 3M hooks are perfect for that task.
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Old 07-24-2013, 10:00 AM   #39
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One of the biggest uses of them is to run cabling along walls and around door frames and closets. In all likelihood the network/phone plugs for the room will only be on one side of the dorm room. If you're on "the other side" you'll need to "run some cable" to your kid's side of the room. If the hook-ups are on the hallway wall, both kids might have to run cable. The 3M hooks are perfect for that task.
Thank you for the info. They do not have wireless in the rooms so will need to run cable
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Old 07-24-2013, 10:12 AM   #40
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Random thoughts from someone that's sent two kids to college so far:

- Unless the school is in a good-sized city, try and buy it before you get there. Our two went/go to a school in a town with a local population of 7,000 people. Therefore, when the dorms open, there's only so many 3M Commander hooks for sale at the Wal-mart.

- Don't go overboard on bedding. Your kid isn't likely going to need/want/use two sets of sheets, and don't be surprised if they don't need a lot of blankets and such and some of them come home at Thanksgiving. Storage space will be at a premium in the room. Most dorms seem to still lack forced air heating and use radiators. These systems often only have two settings: 1) Off, 2) Hatching Baby Chicks. I went to college in Southern Indiana and our older two go/went to a college way up North here... and we both had to keep our windows cracked in the Winter to keep our rooms within tolerable limits. Our #1 brought her excess bedding and clothing that she "over-packed", and had no room for, home at Thanksgiving.

- IT Stuff Check to see if you kid's college allows things like routers (wireless or otherwise). If so, bring one. If not, find out beforehand. Our kids' college did an unexpected about-face on this one. When our oldest started, they were allowed, but the summer before #2 started they outlawed them. Seems an over-abundance of them causing performance issues (plus getting tired of having to constantly battle students leaving open unsecured wireless connections to the university's network) was the tipping point.

Don't forget the LAN cables... and buy ones longer than you think you'll need. It's amazing, but in a tiny dorm room it's possible to use a 40-foot LAN cable from the wall socket, along a couple of walls, over a door, and over a closet... and still be 5-feet short of your kid's desk. I've done it! Also, consider a longer USB cable to connect the printer to the laptop. Assuming your "next-to-free, because-we-want-to-soak-you-on-the-ink-cartridges" printer actually comes with a USB cable, you can bet that unless the printer is placed next to the laptop, it won't be long enough.

Don't reply on wireless. Dorms advertise they have "WiFi". But you can bet that the coverage is uneven from room to room and will "drop" at the worst possible moment. Nothing beats a wired network connection.

- Other Stuff You can be sure that there's important stuff that you won't know about. For our first in college it was a "pool-noodle". At move-in, I kept seeing people carrying in pool-noddles. The reason literally "hit" me within an hour when I first cracked my head on the lofted metal bed frame the college provided in each room. The solution was to take a noddle, put one slit in it length-wise with a box cutter and slide it over the bottom edge of the bed frame as a "head bumper".
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Last edited by Geoff_M; 07-24-2013 at 10:27 AM.
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Old 07-24-2013, 10:18 AM   #41
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Originally Posted by Geoff_M View Post
- Other Stuff You can be sure that there's important stuff that you won't know about. For our first in college it was a "pool-noodle". At move-in, I kept seeing people carrying in pool-noddles. The reason literally "hit" me within an hour when I first cracked my head on the lofted metal bed frame the college provided in each room. The solution was to take a noddle, slit it length-wise with a box cutter and slide it over the bottom edge of the bed frame.
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Old 07-24-2013, 10:23 AM   #42
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Most colleges have a list on their websites as to what is needed for a dorm room, and especially what is not allowed. Then there are the frivolities that the freshman thinks he/she needs, but never uses. It's a pain in the behind to haul all that stuff in and out, IMO.

Right now DD19 has all her needed things in a rubbermaid bin in the dining room. Only things not included are her clothing and toiletries. She's a sophomore, and the amount of crap she 'needed' last year has thinned out quite nicely.

Two sets of sheets are now down to one. She washes them and puts them back on her bed.

Towels - 3 are probably 1 too many, but she likes her color combination and can't 'give one up'

1 comforter and 1 quilt - she should just have 1, but the quilt is sentimental as I made it out of her old dance costumes and it has her name across the middle (made out of trimmings from her costumes). Problem is, the quilt is not long enough to cover her entirely, oops!

1 clip-on lamp, 1 waste basket, 1 clip-on fan, 1 window fan.

1 electric teapot and 2 mugs. She wants to bring all of her baking supplies, ugh...

1 small rug for beside her bed, 3 pillows are downsized from the 5 she 'needed' last year.

We do need to replace her desk lamp, as we broke it on the way home this year!

Now, if she could make do with half the amount of clothing and shoes...
My older DD will be a sophomore and will be in a townhouse this year. So we have to get her some kitchen supplies. I should I say I am getting new kitchen supplies and she gets hand me downs. Her items from last year are in totes in the cellar.

She found the same thing your daughter did, that she brought too much last year. When we drove her back at Thanksgiving she was already giving us stuff to bring home.

Younger DD will be a freshman at the same college this year. Older DD will give younger DD one of her sets of sheets. Then I will buy both a set of flannel sheets for the winter. The college is in the mountains and it gets cold there during the winter.

We were buying items as we got Bed, Bath and Beyond coupons. Now that we have the 20% off entire order, we will do one last buying trip there.

I bought younger DD towels at Target last weekend but didn't like the comforters. I will look at BBB or maybe Kohls.

As for the Target jersey sheets, I bought sets for both girls for their beds at home. Younger DD had a hole worn through hers under her knees/thighs. I thought it an odd spot for the hole to develop as they usually happen at stress points. I also found the sheets shed onto the mattress. I won't be buying them again from Target.
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Old 07-24-2013, 02:10 PM   #43
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Random thoughts from someone that's sent two kids to college so far:


- Don't go overboard on bedding. Your kid isn't likely going to need/want/use two sets of sheets, and don't be surprised if they don't need a lot of blankets and such and some of them come home at Thanksgiving. Storage space will be at a premium in the room. Most dorms seem to still lack forced air heating and use radiators. These systems often only have two settings: 1) Off, 2) Hatching Baby Chicks. I went to college in Southern Indiana and our older two go/went to a college way up North here... and we both had to keep our windows cracked in the Winter to keep our rooms within tolerable limits. Our #1 brought her excess bedding and clothing that she "over-packed", and had no room for, home at Thanksgiving.
I found this hilarious!!!!!!!!!!!! Thanks for the giggle!!
My dd has one year left before college, but I am loving this thread. She can't wait to buy dorm stuff.
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Old 07-24-2013, 02:51 PM   #44
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About the Command hooks: if you will be using them to secure cable runs, be aware that they just started selling a version of the hooks that are designed just for this purpose. The hook is set crosswise, and has a loop on it to keep it closed. I've got them securing a cable running around the baseboard in my office; they work very nicely.

Another good source of good-quality linens is Tuesday Morning, though they don't often have T-XL sheets.

For guys who will be dealing with hall bathrooms, shaving is an important issue to consider. Using a cordless electric makes things easier, but if they like shaving the old-fashioned way with an actual razor, then a good dopp kit is a must. ALWAYS have them come shopping with you for this; men tend to be very picky about their shaving gear.

Also, for males especially, pay attention to how quickly the towels dry. Guys' dorm rooms often smell musty because of the towels; they tend not to hang them up properly to dry. Quick-dry towels are likely to help mitigate that (along with INSISTING that they hang towels up to dry at home; with any luck it will become habit.)

As to washing a comforter or duvet cover, nah, no student is all that likely to do it unless a nasty spill happens, but if they do want to, washing a cover is a lot less trouble than washing the entire fluffy thing.

One last thing: those foam mattress toppers can be quite hot, and they tend to get rank if they absorb sweat. Try to get a cotton mattress pad to go over the whole thing so as to mitigate the heat buildup from foam over plastic.

Lastly, if there is room, a small cube trunk is a nice thing to have. It can be used to lock up valuable electronics in an unobtrusive way, and it functions as useful guest seating. (If the rooms have locking closets this isn't needed so much, but lately I've been seeing newer dorm room layouts that include no closets at all; just a curtained-off hanging bar for clothes.)

Last edited by NotUrsula; 07-24-2013 at 03:08 PM.
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Old 07-24-2013, 03:44 PM   #45
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About the Command hooks: if you will be using them to secure cable runs, be aware that they just started selling a version of the hooks that are designed just for this purpose. The hook is set crosswise, and has a loop on it to keep it closed. I've got them securing a cable running around the baseboard in my office; they work very nicely.
Thanks for the heads up on that. Haven't seen that version of the hooks but will look more carefully now that I know about them.


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Also, for males especially, pay attention to how quickly the towels dry. Guys' dorm rooms often smell musty because of the towels; they tend not to hang them up properly to dry. Quick-dry towels are likely to help mitigate that (along with INSISTING that they hang towels up to dry at home; with any luck it will become habit.)
Good point. In a similar vein, any suggestions for what they can do with sweaty shorts/shirts after running, playing sports, etc. They're pretty odoriferous so just throwing them in the dirty clothes hamper is not a good solution for him or his roommate lol. At home they dry out in the basement bathroom that no one uses - until they are laundered. Guess he could have a separate laundry hamper for them but smell is still an issue, especially in these small dorm rooms

BTW, my son has not found the Costco memory foam topper to be much warmer to sleep on..... and he's pretty sensitive to that kind of thing. YMMV obviously
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