Srat Life: paddle painting

Srat /adjective/

abbreviation for “sorority”, meaning iconic of or pertaining to sorority life, based on “frat”, an abbreviation for fraternity.

Sorority Paddles

So it’s a tradition for sorority littles to make their bigs a paddle. A paddle is a wooden stick thing that I’m honestly not really sure the purpose of other than as cute decor in your dorm/house. I mean paddles for fraternities are a whole different matter that I don’t even want to go into. Anyway I joined my sorority during informal recruitment, meaning I was a little late to the game and I’m a little (A LOT) behind on my sorority crafting. Soooo here I am making a paddle in January. Good job me. Anyway I delayed this post until after I give my big her paddle, on the off chance she might read my blog and not be surprised. That would be really sad.

My big is so cute!

What You Need

So I started my paddle making adventure with a trip to Micheal’s. And of course I ended up buying so many things I didn’t need. Peep my post about canvas painting for even more srat craft ideas.

  • wooden paddle
  • craft paint
  • paint brushes
  • fake pearls or other decorations



How To Make It

  1. Paint your paddle a base color (I painted mine black of course).
  2. Calligraphy the s#!@ out of it (your letters, your chapter, your university, your big’s name, your name…).
  3. Add the little random decorations you impulse bought at the craft store (looking at you, fake pearls).
  4. Make it personal on the back (write a cute note or modge podge some pictures on there).
  5. Give your beautifully designed paddle to your big and remind her just how much she means to you!

Paddle Inspiration

Check out my Pinterest for more cool ideas on how to design and decorate your sorority paddle!

Screen Shot 2018-02-19 at 1.03.26 PM.png

Want to see how cute my big looks with her new paddle? Find me outside the blog on Instagram and Twitter!




Valentine’s Day Ideas: for when you’re livin’ the dorm life

Valentine’s Day

This is probably my favorite holiday, not gonna lie. I mean, being able to shower your friends with fun surprises and not being judged for eating a ridiculous amount of chocolate? What more could you possibly want? Anyway I’ve compiled yet another list (can you tell I also love lists?) full of ideas about how to celebrate valentine’s day to the fullest, while spoiling all the special people in your life/dorm!

1. Make Personalized Door Signs For Your Corridor

I made mine super simple because I had A LOT to make. All you really need are paper, scissors, markers, and a little bit of creativity!

  1. Draw a little heart in a light colored marker.
  2. Write the person’s name in fun handwriting or calligraphy. I recommend watching a youtube video or doing some searching on Pinterest.
  3. Cut out around the name and adhere to her door with sticky tack or tape.IMG_6191

2. Leave Your Roommate a Sweet Surprise

My roommate is the sweetest person, so I had to get her something just as sweet! (so corny I know) She puts up with my crazy, over-caffeinated self on a daily basis. Anyway I made her a little card and some chocolate. I recommend you write your roommate a personalized note and throw in some of her favorite sweets!


3. Go Eat Off Campus

Dining hall food is fast and easy, but usually not the greatest. So go treat yourself and a few friends to some good eats! It doesn’t have to be anything expensive or fancy, My roommate and I went out for some breakfast food (my absolute favorite!).IMG_6209.JPG

4. Sharing is Caring

If your parent sent you a ridiculous amount of baked goods in a care pack for valentine’s day (like my dad always does), post a pic on your snap/insta story and invite your friends to stop by for a sweet treat (and help save you from the very real possibility of a sugar coma).

Christmas Cookies, Pastries, Cookie, Christmas

5. Treat Yourself

That afternoon lecture that you can barely manage to stay awake for? Treat yourself to your favorite coffee or tea drink before hand. I mean the one that’s 90% sugary flavored syrup and 10% whipped cream. Calories don’t count on v-day right? Starbucks, Glass, Coffee, Beautiful, Macro, Food, Cafe

Share your valentine’s day ideas with me in the comments! Find me on Twitter, Instagram, and now Facebook!



Staying Organized This Semester {Free Printable Planner}


Staying Organized

Today is my first day of classes this semester (in a new dorm room!) and I’m trying to be more organized to better juggle my sorority calendar with my academics. College is crazy busy with paper deadlines, exam dates, club meetings, plans with friends, internships, and the list just goes on. One of my most important College Success Tips is that you write those things down. Make full use of a planner. Make it super cutesy, mod, minimalist, or whatever speaks to you personally. Me, I tend to lean towards a #organizedchaos approach. If you don’t like your planner, you’re less likely to use it, which makes you more likely to forget the meeting with your grumpy prof about getting that paper extension. Don’t miss your meeting, use a planner. I even made you a cutesy little bullet-journal type planner PDF for January 2018 that you can download and print right now.

Screen Shot 2018-01-29 at 2.45.12 PMScreen Shot 2018-01-29 at 2.45.49 PM  AND MORE!

The Freebie (aka the reason you’re reading this post)

My lovelies, I have made you a cute little printable planner. You can print out whatever pages you want. Use it as a planner insert, pin it to your bulletin board, tape it inside your notebook, or stick it to your mini fridge. Put it wherever it will be most helpful, so you can stay on top of your crazy busy college schedule. Let me know how you used my pretty little printable and tag me on Instagram and Twitter!

I painstakingly designed this myself with my extensive graphic design background (I took one intro class). It’s got pretty little roses and everything. This is for PERSONAL USE ONLY. So if I see this for sale somewhere, I will cry. Don’t be that person. Don’t make me cry.

For you:

Minimalist Grid 2018 in Pixels

Minimalist Grid Daily Planner

Minimalist Grid Weekly Planner-2

Minimalist Grid Weekly Planner 1

Minimalist Grid Monthly Planner

How do you stay organized at college? Let me know in the comments!



Srat Life: canvas painting

Srat /adjective/ 

abbreviation for “sorority”, meaning iconic of or pertaining to sorority life, based on “frat”, an abbreviation for fraternity.

What is a Sorority Canvas?

A sorority canvas is a craft, made to give to your future little during big-little week. They usually involve a pop culture reference somehow incorporating the letters/colors/mascot/etc. of your sorority into the painting in the most srat way possible.

You Will Need:

  • Blank canvas
  • Pencil
  • Sharpie
  • Craft paint
  • Brushes
  • Glitter/metallic paint
  • Killer crafting playlist

Step by Step:

  1. Paint a base coat over the whole canvas.
  2. Sketch out your design, lightly, in pencil.
  3. Paint your design. I recommend using a sharpie for the lettering or practicing with a brush and paint on a separate sheet of paper first. Let dry and erase any stray pencil marks.
  4. Go over design and add in details in the metallic paint or with glitter. I prefer metallic paint, because it makes less of a mess, but finding glitter literally everywhere is just part of the srat life.
  5. Display in your own room until you absolutely have to give it to your little, because a masterpiece like that needs to be shown off.

Sorority Canvas Inspiration:

These are the canvases I made for my future little. Full disclosure: I am not an artist by any means.


I love puns and I love sushi, so I made a srat pun about sushi.


What can I say? Donuts are my weakness.


Obligatory galaxy themed srat craft. I just really wanted to flick white paint everywhere and call it “stars”.


Have I ever mentioned that I occasionally drink coffee? No?


More puns, yessss. Let’s just ignore the part where I made a cactus canvas and I go to school in Ohio.

Need more srat canvas inspiration? Check out my Pinterest for more ideas and share your own gorgeous canvases with #memyselfsratcanvas !

Find me on Instagram and Twitter!



Happy One Month to Me!

Hi everyone!

It’s officially been one whole month since I decided to started a lifestyle blog in the wee hours of the morning, without a clue about what I was doing. I think I’m starting to get the hang of this whole blogging thing, but I would love your input! Let me know if there is anyway I could improve my blog!

Thank you! Don’t forget to look for me on

Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter!



College Trends 101: laptop stickers

Laptop Stickers:

The first thing you will notice, walking into any library or coffee shop on campus, is that a majority of students are hunched over laptops coated in a layer of stickers. I am no exception. My laptop stickers are a meaningfully selected and artfully placed representation of me. They are the first thing professors notice when I pull out my MacBook Air on the first day of classes. They are what get me loads of compliments when I write papers at Starbucks. They draw out the most interesting questions from friends and study buddies.


Where To Get Them:

  • Redbubble  – Want a tiny replica of a famous painting, an artsy quote, or your favorite meme in sticker form? This is the place. Also they pretty much always have some type of sale happening. You can also use this site to make your own stickers. I’ve gotten a majority of my stickers from here and I will probably buy more.
  • Clubs/Organizations – Peep my Greek letters. A great way to show what you are a part of. My university gave out free stickers during orientation, and so did a bunch of other organizations during my first few weeks at school. Let’s just say I’m always on the lookout for FREE stickers.
  • Travel – Next time you go somewhere cool, grab a little sticker as a souvenir. I picked up a sweet little pink one from Jackson Hole during my winter break.

Need More Inspiration?


Check out my Pinterest for even more inspiration! Share how you decked out your own laptop with #memyselflaptopstickers and let’s be friends on Instagram @mirandaoates !



College Success Tips (That Actually Worked For Me)

These are the tips that actually worked for me and helped me to get an internship, do independent research, make amazing friends, and maintain a not-too-shabby GPA if I do say so myself. Okay, so you’ve probably heard most of these already, the trick is actually following through on them. Best of luck.

  1. Get a planner. Use it.

    Get a cute one with lots of space to write stuff down. Your schedule is about to get messy, really messy. Most professors will hand out or email you a syllabus on the first day and that’s all you get as far as reminders go for due dates. Having a well organized planner is absolutely crucial, doesn’t matter if you are taking 13 credits or 25 (yes I have actually taken 25 credit hours), if you don’t write it down, you will forget.

  2. Talk to your professors.

    Be it after class, over email, or in office hours, you need to reach out. These are the people that will potentially be your mentors and write your recommendation letters for future internships, jobs, and grad school. If they don’t know who you are, they’re going to have a much harder time helping you. Most of the time they are really interesting people, passionate about the same topics and issues that you are. It can be as simple as introducing yourself and thanking them on the first day of class, which is what led to my first college internship with special projects.

  3.  Join something, anything.

    Whatever it is that you love to do, I can basically guarantee your university will have some type of organization full of people who love the same thing. It’s the best way to make friends and get involved on campus. Whether you want something artsy, philanthropic, social, or outdoorsy, getting involved can make you feel like you truly belong at your school. I met some of my first friends in college through anthropology club, and now I’m on the executive board managing their social media.

  4. Call home.

    It’s important to stay in touch with your family, especially if you are studying far away from home. It’s always a good thing to know that someone is thinking about you, and that they care. When I have a really bad day at school I call my mum and tell her about it and we come up with a game plan on how to fix it. I also call my sisters and hype them up when I know they have a big tournament or audition coming up that I’m going to miss because I’m states away.

  5. Leave your dorm room.

    I know that I have spent 5+ hours sitting in my dorm, strung out on caffeine, hunched over a computer, punching out a research paper. I really don’t recommend it. A planner, as I said before, should help so that you aren’t putting things like 15 page research papers where all the source are in either Italian or French off until the day that they are due (yes, I really did this *shudder*). Your campus will have so many places better than you poorly lit, slightly dingy dorm room. I try to work at a coffee shop, the library, or find a nice sunny spot on the quad. I’ve found that being in a pretty place puts me in a better state of mind and allows me to be more productive. I also recommend finding study group so you’re not cramming for that dreaded bio exam alone. Go find your study spot.

Please share any college tips and tricks you might have in the comments below! Best of luck!