Posts Tagged ‘family’

My Mom, The Survivor

Sunday, June 25th, 2017
Image Credit: Caroline Flynn

Image Credit: Caroline Flynn


“I don’t want to be pitied” she said, gazing at her reflection in the mirror. A few short months ago her hair was the shoulder-length layered and highlighted style that many of the Mom’s around town sported as they rushed to and from soccer practices, grocery stores, and jobs. Now there was nothing there but a feathery fuzz like the down of a baby bird gently hugging her bare scalp. She would say that she looked in the mirror and saw a cancer patient. But I could only see someone with a determination to look like anything but, and who was succeeding.

Decisively, she put the wig she was holding in one hand firmly onto her head and grabbed her car keys. “I don’t want to be pitied” she reaffirmed, mostly talking to my Dad who had reminded her that she was beautiful bald. “I think the wig looks good” I reassured her as I watched her march out the door to conquer her fear of being in public.

Image Credit: Caroline Flynn

Image Credit: Caroline Flynn

My Mom was diagnosed with Breast Cancer over a year ago in May, and even as I write this truth, it still feels like the words are void of meaning. For those of you who don’t know me, this story has a happy ending full of life lessons and strengthened bonds. But the beginning will always be hard. At first I didn’t know how to process the realization that something this drastic was out of my hands. Usually, when little crises affect my life I’m strong willed and quick witted, and the problem is gone almost as quickly as it began. I had no precedent for how to act as you watch your Mom get sick. And if I could go back to last summer, there are a million little things I would do differently.

Image Credit: Caroline Flynn

Image Credit: Caroline Flynn

My Mom on the other hand, figured it out pretty early on. And though chemo had its days and took its toll, the second she felt better she jumped at the chance to live as normal a life as possible. When you ask her how she did it, she always breaks into a grin and begins to tell story after story of how supportive all the people in her life have been. Her friends from all parts of her life came together to bring her post-chemo gifts every week. I did the grocery shopping and helped out with her business. My dad went to every doctor’s appointment he could and my sister accompanied her to chemo. My grandmother called her everyday and would drive her to treatments, her sisters checked in often. Even friends across the country managed to find ways to bring a smile to her face, sending random supportive texts or even fruit baskets from Colorado! And from this cocoon of support, as treatments piled up and her body began to fight back against her good spirits, she never gave up hope.

My Photo

Image Credit: Caroline Flynn

Then it was September and school started again. My life in New York did not reflect what I felt like the life of a daughter supporting her sick mom should look like. Over the summer we had learned as a family that our relationships were what supported us even more than we could have ever imagined. And suddenly, I could no longer be there every day to talk with my Mom and help around the house. I felt guilty that all those people who couldn’t love my Mom nearly as much as I did were going to be closer to her physically and emotionally as she continued her battle. And while she was spending most of her days getting poison pumped through her veins, I was in New York City, happy, healthy, and far from home. So I looked for little ways to support her.

Image Credit: Caroline Flynn

Image Credit: Caroline Flynn

Freshman year, all my Mom had ever wanted was to know everything about my life every second of every day. Obviously this request to me seemed completely unreasonable and even when she tried to bargain it down to most things about my life most seconds of most days, I would claim my independence and retort that I’d talk to her when I had time. But now, with her sick at home, I realized that if that’s what she wanted – a little piece of me everyday – I would happily manage. 

Image Credit: Caroline Flynn

Image Credit: Caroline Flynn

My family wore these Hope rings everyday to remind us all that things were going to turn out okay, and it seemed like the perfect way to stay connected and supportive of my Mom. Though to the naked eye these pictures may look like nothing more than a diary of what I had for dinner and who I might have seen that day, to my Mom these pictures were a window into my world. Since her treatment ended in February, my Mom and I are closer than ever. To me this means that we fight just enough for it to feel like a mother-daughter relationship, and the rest of the time we’re friends. As adult life becomes an increasing part of my reality, her guidance and support is something I am thankful for everyday. And though her hair is getting longer and the clutter of breast-cancer-pink is slowly disappearing from the house, I can still look at her and remember how she looked with cancer: strong and always moving forward.


By Caroline Flynn

Caroline Flynn is a Sales and Publishing Intern at the Campus Clipper studying Theatre at NYU Tisch. Caroline is passionate about the arts and dedicated to using her voice to make other people smile. As she heads into her Junior year, she is excited to be writing about how relationships have shaped her life while she takes on summer in the city for the first time. Check out her Instagram for more witty and heartfelt content on her life. 

We have the most talented interns ever and we’re so proud of them! For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourage them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing and services.  

At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015. 


Self-Love Through Service-The Best Student Deal Yet!

Thursday, April 6th, 2017

“give to those

who have nothing

to give to you

seva (selfless service)

-Rupi Kaur

Personally, I believe that giving back to others is a great way to feel good about yourself. Helping someone else always brings me great joy. I love knowing that I can make a difference and impact someone else’s day in a positive way. I want to make connections with people and let them know that I genuinely care about them, as well as let them know that I am there if they need someone to turn to. If you ask me, there is no doubt that giving back to others can improve our own self-love.

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Image Credit:

Most of us have been fortunate enough to have the help of parents or teachers or some sort of mentor throughout our lives. Some of us, perhaps, only had the help of strangers to get us through each day. Either way, there is a sort of peace created when we choose to help those not as fortunate as we are, or to give back in the same way that someone else was able to give to us. That peace is internal, but it is also unifying, as it brings together different people and families, different communities and sometimes even different cultures. It can remind us that at the end of the day we’re all just people who could use a little bit of help.

It costs no money to lend a helping hand in many instances. (The ultimate student deal). While many charities seek donations in order to keep their doors open, and occasionally people on the street are seeking a dollar for some lunch, many times, what we are truly volunteering is simply our time, and most of us have plenty of it even if it doesn’t feel that way.

I volunteered a few months ago here in NYC with God’s Love We Deliver, and I absolutely loved it. If you don’t know, God’s Love We Deliver is a large non-sectarian organization that delivers healthy, individually-tailored meals to people and their families who are unable to do so for themselves, with the belief that food is medicine. When I spent my morning at GLWD, I was placed in the kitchen as one of many volunteers responsible for peeling and chopping pounds of carrots and rutabagas to be used in that day’s soup. My experience at God’s Love was incredibly humbling. To witness people helping people feels so good and to be an active part of that feels so much better.

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Image Credit:

I asked several other college students what they do in order to achieve self-love and what things help them feel better in their own skin. Everyone I asked agreed that helping other people helps them and one student made a great point; that when you help others, even if it is something that seems small and trivial, you often receive thanks or some sort of praise that instantly increases your own happiness. Some students cherish helping their parents or other family members, and some find it important to volunteer at their church. For many people, turning to a creative medium such as painting or journaling, or taking a step back from the chaos of everyday life by going on vacation or simply turning off their technological devices can improve their ability to love themselves.

If you don’t already, I advise you to try giving back to the community around you in some way. You may find that this is a newfound passion of yours. You may find that this is is the root of your self-love.

By Chanelle Surphlis

Chanelle Surphlis is a Campus Clipper publishing intern, who is graduating from FIT this May. Passionate about giving back and pursuing volunteer opportunities, Chanelle aspires to work for a fashion or beauty company that includes philanthropy in its core values. If you like Chanelle’s writing, check out her blogs here and here. We have the most talented interns ever and we’re so proud of them! For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourage them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing and services.  

At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015.



Giving Back: Starting from Home

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014

So you kept reading eh? Expecting me to list the best organizations that will help you change the world? Think I’m going to start with some statistic that is going to make you feel on fire for Cambodia? Well I’m not. Yes it is true that according to Compassion International for only $1.25 a day you could supply food, clean water, medical care, and education to a child in need, but I won’t bombard you with these facts, at least not right now.

Instead, let’s start from home. No really, start at home! Contrary to popular belief, we are not created to be alone. Independence will only get you so far in life. Yes, you can go out and get a job, stand out among the rest and work your way up the ladder, but in order to be truly successful you need community. Growing up you needed someone to guide you, but now that you’re an “adult”, you need friends to hold you accountable to your goals, build you up, and simply laugh with. Because of the mutual love and comfort you find in each other, these relationships cannot flourish without sacrifice.

So what better way to begin this journey of “giving back” than starting from home? You can’t learn to serve those around the world and strangers on the street until you learn to serve those you love (and sometimes can’t stand).

Here are some simple suggestions that will surely show you care:

  1. Give Housework Help
    When you live with someone, you start picking up on their “telltale signs” of a good or bad day. You can feel their emotions vibrate through the floorboards into your room. You just know. So on those days when their door is shutting you out, or they burst through yours crying about the stresses of a new job, give a helping hand. After sitting with them listening to their cries, and affirming that, “Yes, your boss is a jerk, no, they don’t deserve you”, take a moment to think of how you can help. Maybe the dishes are piling up and it’s their day to do them. Follow the Nike cliché and “just do it”. They may or may not notice, but that’s not the point. The point is you showed a little love to the person you spend every day with.
  2. Bring Friends Food
    Why do people say, “diamonds are a girl’s best friend” when we all know it’s actually pizza, or that “the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach”, when in reality the stomach is the key to every person’s soul? Sure we’re all poor students, but if just a few extra bucks can make your roommate’s whole day, why not “just do it”? I noticed the importance of this the other week when I ordered some Thai food to be delivered to my friend’s apartment in Brooklyn. I didn’t realize the portions would be so large, and there was no way I was gunna carry that back to Jersey. I offhandedly offered it to my friend and her eyes widened as she responded, “YES! That will be my lunch for tomorrow.” Finally I realized the importance of food to us struggling younglings in the city. So the next time you order from or browse through all the meal coupons on the Campus Clipper, keep your friends in mind!

    If your roommate ever snaps at you, check around the room for a coupon...or unopened bag of chips...

  3. Being Sick Sucks
    Let’s just stop and contemplate all the places you touch on a daily basis. Just thinking about the subway alone is enough to make me gag. In the fast-paced rush of the city, we just don’t have time to get sick! Most of the time we don’t even have a chance to sit down to eat a healthy meal. Yet every winter we put off our flu shots and brave the cold. Even if you don’t catch anything, there’s a chance that one of your roommates will. Before you routinely run out the door, take a moment to check on the people you live with. More likely than not they don’t actually need anything, but knowing that someone is willing to take care of them is comfort enough. Maybe you’re not much of a cook, but opening a can of soup and popping it in the microwave can be exhausting for someone who’s sick with the flu. Doing this will only take two minutes, but showing that you care makes the heart happy, and healthy.
  4. Show Active Appreciation
    Hopefully, you live with someone who helps keep the place clean, or gives you a text while waiting in line at Starbucks asking what you want. (If not, maybe you could just slide this article underneath their door). Regardless, the most important component of keeping a relationship strong is the act of showing appreciation. So when they sacrifice for you don’t just say “thank you”. Verbally express appreciation for your roomie. It doesn’t need to be a sob fest, unless that’s what they need, (refer back to the girl in tip 1), but showing appreciation for each other will help calm those inevitable crazy days that come with a shared living space.


Sometimes all you need in a city full of pushy grimacing faces is a strong and joyful relationship with your house buds. But as I stated before, the act of helping only begins here. Now we continue onto serving outside.


If my short snippet about Compassion International did in fact interest you, you can find more information here:


Samantha Bringas

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Family: Should call ASAP, now, later, laterish, or in 3 days?

Wednesday, August 7th, 2013

     Let’s face it, most of us start getting too preoccupied as semesters start every year.  Classes, assignments, sports, friendships, relationships, and those lazy weekend afternoons you inhale a zillion calories make it so we have no time for family. Is that really the case? Can we not take a few minutes of our lives, or stop eating that second serving of Chipotle to phone our family?

     Classes are arguably consuming depending on  your semester level. For one mathematics course, which will remain unnamed, I had to solve 6 problem sets. “Bring it,” I wanted to yell, but resisted the urge as it would be not only weird but disruptive too. It took 3 hours to solve one problem–mind you this was higher level calculus where numbers barely exist. I still had 5 more solutions to find. I would not leave this spot, I said to myself, not even for caffeine (Ok, I did for coffee but it was life or death, but not really).

     24 hours later (about 10 a.m to 8p.m actually) my thoughts were scattered, murmuring mathematical concepts, seeing distant white specs, and I was overall unfocused when leaving the library. The last thing I wanted was to call my parents that night. Arguably, the call would have helped me adjust my focus. It has been noted that discussing and thinking  about other subjects clears your mind so that when you return to an assignment you tackle it differently this time around.

   Professors suggest you shouldn’t fixate on one assignment for hours on end. Don’t leave it to the last minute either because that  is just unnecessary stress on you. Instead, take breaks, walk around,exercise, eat, or talk to someone to help clear your mind. You could get a drink from T-Magic, they offer a free bubble tea with the Campus Clipper coupon.

    When you start an assignment, you never see any fault in your approach because you’ve molded your brain to one perspective. Rest your mind by calling your parents during tough situations. Perhaps they’re not prodigious math professors, but they may help by giving you a much needed boost that you’re no failure and everyone else has identical ordeals in college. Your parents will, of course, feel loved and cherished that you trust them during such small scenarios. It lets them know you think of them foremost during your academic debacles.

    Don’t habitually phone them every time you suffer a school related mishap; trust them enough to talk about relationships, friends, food in NYC, and professors. You should not set your parents, or immediate family, aside because you’re now ‘busy’ or too ‘stressed.’ There’s no decree for the correct time to call family. It’s largely your choice whether you want your family incorporated in your college life or semi-integrated, but once those years end they’re the ones who are picking you up and whisking you off back home.



Sergio Hernandez, Skidmore College. Send Sergio a Tweet Tweet only on Twitter

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Interested in more deals for students? Sign up for our bi-weekly newsletter to get the latest in student discounts and promotions  and follow our Tumblr and Pinterest. For savings on-the-go, download our printable coupon e-book!


Late Night Creations

Friday, July 2nd, 2010

written by Sabina Ashbaugh

We always substitute an egg with two tablespoons of vanilla soymilk—a slight variation that leaves the dough runny and easier to mix with the cracked wooden spoon. The timer is set for 12 minutes, not 14 as the cookbook suggests, with a reminder at the six-minute mark to switch the top and bottom trays in the oven. Despite these careful discrepancies, accumulated over countless nights, our creations are never completely predictable. We speculate whether it might be the heat of the dimly lit kitchen, and that volatile summer breeze that seeps in through the windows and seems to soften the contours of the room.
Despite our many trials, my sister and I never fully plan our baking efforts, or even carefully measure out the ingredients of our amended recipes. The soymilk substitution, now a permanent step in the cookie making process, came from a late realization that the egg carton was deceptively empty. As if to support this impulsiveness, the planned desserts baked for family dinners—the pumpkin or apple pies, the blueberry cobblers, the cinnamon buns, the madeleines—are never as good as the spontaneous endeavors to satisfy late night cravings. The immediate satisfaction of these creations quickly assuaged the worries and anxieties amassed during school or work. Tasks divided and ingredients laid out, my sister and I get to work setting right the wrongs of the day.
It has been a year now since I moved away from home. Some months have flown by while others have painstakingly inched to a close, with pangs of homesickness and late night baking cravings that seemed to arise out of nowhere. Family, a concept that had seemed so natural and tangible just a year ago, has slowly been abstracted to stand for that sense of place so radically reconfigured after leaving for school. In times of stress, I often caught myself about to call the house with a confused plea of “What should I do?”
With distance I have come to realize how often I unintentionally underappreciated this form of support. I cringe at the thought that the ease and spontaneity of those nights spent baking are a lost bridge between my sister and I—treasured memories to look back on fondly but ones impossible to recapture. And yet the removal of this crutch has also forced me to examine how I will right the wrongs of the day in my own way—not by baking, but through the careers and choices that lie ahead.
Moving away is an exciting step towards independence and deciding how and what one wants to change in the world. In the midst of so many choices, the advice offered by family is a means of grounding oneself in times of transformation. Finding a niche in college involves exploring how one will contribute to society and improve the lives of others, but it also requires the recognition of the debt owed to those at home.
Growing up compels us to accept these recipes, relationships, and plans for future change. Family rituals become memories as traditions are re-made. It is important to maintain ties with those that helped us get where we are, and continue to want to see us succeed. Helping others starts by looking out for and appreciating those at home, and paying tribute to those left behind.

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