As Pepperdine’s announcement to have school fully online this semester crushed students’ expectations of being on campus for the semester, some students still chose to live in the area. Some moved in with friends while others moved in with strangers, like myself (an article about my experience living with strangers is coming soon!). Due to social distance regulations, it can be hard to get out of the house leaving people home in their households with their roommates being some of the only people they see. It is so important during this time to build relationships with the people that you live with. Here are some easy ways that you can bond with your roommates during this crazy time.
Weekly Roommate Dinners
Find time every week to commit to having dinner with your roommates. Every week on Sunday my roommates and I get together and set the day and time we will have dinner together for the week. If you want, you can even make it the same day and time every week so you always have something to look forward to. During your dinners, you can take the time to cook a new recipe together, order in from a local restaurant, or if regulations permit, eat out at a restaurant (don’t forget your mask!). If money is tight, you can always change dinner to a weekly roommate desert or boba run.
Adopt/Foster a Pet
I would like to preface this suggestion by saying don’t get a pet on a whim. Make sure you have permission from all of your roommates and that you have a plan on what you are going to do with the pet over school breaks. If you don’t feel like you can own a pet for a long period of time, many local shelters are in need of fosters for their dogs and cats. Taking care of an animal can help strengthen your bond with your roommates as you all have to work together to take care of the animal. Also, having an animal friend during this time can bring emotional support to everyone in your home during quarantine.
Redecorate your Living Room
It’s so easy to spice up your living room especially with the start of the fall season. Spend some time looking online for new decor or head on over to your local dollar store, Target, TJ Maxx or walmart to pick up some cheap new accents for your home. You’ll bond with your roommates from the experience and will make your space feel more welcoming.
Create a Bucket List
Get together with your roommates and make a roommate bucket list. This can be a list full of activities, places, restaurants, or experiences that you all want to visit or do together. Make your list practical but also adventurous. Try to see how many things you can get done together before the holidays! For example, my roommate hadn’t ever seen the Hollywood sign or had boba so we put those on our bucket list and made those things happen together. You can even post a physical copy of your bucket list up in a common space so that you can reflect on all the amazing things you’ve done together or want to do together!
Have fun, stay safe, and enjoy this surplus of time that you can share with your roommates!