After cramming for finals and running out of spending money, the thought of going home to see friends, family, and a fully stocked refrigerator is music to my ears. Even though you’ll have much needed down time, going home for break isn’t always smooth sledding. I am so excited to go home for my third winter break since starting at WSU, but am being mindful of the following things that have helped me adjust in the past.

Ask what your “at home” boundaries are.
College is filled with freedom, but going home for the month of winter break is filled with free food! Respecting your parents under their roof is a must, and going over a few ground rules never hurt anyone.

Do you have a curfew while you’re home? What days do you have family events going on that you should plan around? What chores are you expected to help with? You may be off scot-free while living at home, but if not, a reminder might be nice BEFORE you get in trouble for breaking an old rule you forgot about.

Cut out the naughty words.
I have been known to have a little bit of a potty mouth while at school. But I remember going home my freshman year when I forgot to match my mouth to my environment and my mom wasn’t pleased.

Here are some curse word alternatives to replace the language you may have grown accustomed to: sugar, bologna, fudge nuggets, son of a gun, shucks, darn, shoot, my goodness. These will come in handy when you want to tell the story of the time your bratty roommate wouldn’t do her darn dishes for goodness sake. What the heck! Am I right?

Be prepared to discuss academics.
Are you ready to chat about how you did this semester? I bet your parents are. Oh, the joy of explaining why you did poorly in an art class. “It wasn’t art, Mom, it was art history and I don’t do well with memorizing dates and names.”

If the heat is too much to handle, just deflect by bringing up one of your sibling’s screw ups (if you are an only child then I don’t know what to tell you.) Just kidding — but having an adult discussion about grades and how to improve them can show maturity. Your parents could have much needed wisdom to share with you.

It may take some adjusting for your family to get used to having another body around the house again. It may take time for you to adjust to the house getting quiet at 9pm instead of your 1am sleeping schedule. But once you settle in again, nothing can beat some quality family time, and did I mention the free food?!

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Samantha Johnson

Samantha is a Public Relations major and Marketing minor who will graduate in 2019. She is from Rogers, MN and her hobbies include camping, hiking, reading, listening to music and hanging out with friends.

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