So, I know that most of the students of the Northern Hemisphere have already done the whole back to school thing, but my uni is one of the last to start so I’m only just getting my back to school stuff sorted now.
In honour of this momentous occasion, I thought I’d take things back to 2010 and do a what’s in my bag post (I used to love these so much).
Since I commute from an hour away, it’s a little different than a student who lives on campus, or a high school student with a locker, but I figured it would be interesting for everybody to see and maybe get some inspiration from.
I could waffle on all day, but let’s just get started shall we.
First of all, the bag itself I got in April from Peacocks so I’m not sure if it’ll still be available, but essentially it’s a mini backpack. Until I got this, I had been using a tote bag, but I just always found it to be big and cumbersome, whereas this distributes the weight more evenly when I have to do some serious walking. Also, as it’s a mini, it fits comfortably under the desks in lecture halls and my seat on the bus, so I never have to worry about leg room or saving a seat solely for my massive bag. However, there are pros and cons to this. Since it’s a small bag, I did have to cut a few corners when it came to bringing stuff, but there’s honestly nothing else I really need to bring with me day-to-day so I couldn’t be happier with this solution.
Since I take 3 modules per semester, I have 3 A5ish (yes, that is their actual size description) notebooks from Ohh Deer. I just assigned one to each module and this is where I keep all my notes from independent reading, tutorials and lectures, as well as any relevant essay planning or course information. Essentially, if I lost one of these I’d fail a module, but it’s the easiest way for me to stay on top of my work and have everything with me that I need.
I don’t take all of these notebooks with me every day, just the ones I need for the classes I have (that’s a maximum of 2 a day).
My lovely little notebooks would be completely useless if I didn’t have my pencil case with me, so let’s take a look at that next. This is where I keep not only my pens for working but also a few of my favourite bullet journal supplies so that I can plan on the go.
I won’t go into the exact contents of this pouch here, but if you want a more in depth look at what I carry around every day (in other words my favourite pens) let me know in the comments below, until then, you can check out my Pen Collection!
Is anyone really surprised? I don’t go anywhere without this thing! It has all my to-do lists, course information and other essential information that allows me to plan, work and generally function as a human being… I’d be lost without it.
Last year, when I carried a tote, I lugged my laptop to uni with me every day. However, this year I stopped that because it was so risky and I didn’t actually use it in any lectures or tutorials, I only used it to work on the bus.
Now, I bring my iPad with me for any typing, PowerPoint viewing or essay proofing I might need to do. It’s also great because it allows me to work on blog and Etsy stuff if I get the chance.
‘But Abby,’ I hear you ask ‘why don’t you have any textbooks?’
Well, I do have a couple that I have to bring, but as an English student most of my core reading is available in a Kindle or PDF format, so I just chuck in my Kindle and bring that with me instead.
I do have a physical copy of almost every book I needed to read this semester, but I just keep them at home for referencing and note taking, they don’t come to uni with me.
Since starting uni, I’ve managed to reduce the size of my ’emergency pouch’ from a clutch bag to a sample make up bag. This is where I keep all those little things that you don’t need all that often, but when you do you’re so happy you have them.
In this pouch I have…
- Tissues (because I get colds all the time, and nobody likes the sniffler in the back of the lecture hall)
- Plasters (because I’m an English student, and paper cuts are a real issue)
- Paracetamol (for headaches and… ahem… lady troubles)
- Anti-allergy medication (Not such a necessity in the winter, but once hay fever season hits I need this daily)
- Tampon (No explanation needed)
- Lip balm (Because chapped lips aren’t cute, and they hurt like heck after a while.
- Universal charging cable (okay, it’s not universal… but it does charge my phone, iPad and Kindle, all of which have different ports)
- Adapter plug (So I can plug that very useful cable into the wall rather than using it as a pretty bracelet)
- Hair tie (I used to bring a few different hair bits, but realistically a hair tie is all you really need on a bad day)
- A comb (so your hair will look better when you put the hair tie in)
- Hand sanitiser (because buses are gross)
This is the easiest part of my bag to access, so I keep all my basics that I can get at quickly when I’m running for the bus or late for a lecture.
Foldable water bottle
I fill this up a few times throughout the day, drink and then fold it up again when I’m done. It saves me buying a bottle of water every time I’m thirsty, and it has a handy clip if I want to carry water with me and not soak the inside of my bag (if I’m honest, I never really use the clip, but it’s good to have… just in case).
Foldable shopping bag
This way, if I buy something while I’m in the city or if I need to lug an extra big textbook with me one day, I don’t have to jam it into my teeny tiny school bag and can just carry it on my shoulder.
It’s maybe not ideal, but it works.
Very specific to me and my crap lungs, but asthma happens.
With my money, debit card, student ID, bus pass etc… all the things I need to get successfully from Point A to Point B with minimal issues.
To open things like my car and my house… you know, the basic task of keys. Also great if you’re walking through a dodgy area and need some peace of mind.
Because there would be no point in me sitting in a lecture unable to see the poor attempt at using PowerPoint (is it just English lecturers who struggle with technology? Or is it a universal thing?)
Phone and headphones
In this day and age, I don’t think I really need to explain why I bring my phone, do I?
Unfortunately I was unable to photograph either of these items as I take the pictures with my phone and have mysteriously lost my headphones. Ce la vie.
And that’s it! I really hope you guys found this post interesting and somewhat useful.
Good luck to anyone out there’s who’s started/starting uni this year, I promise it’s not as scary as it seems. I’ll see you all in the comments below!