The Daily Illini

Seize the (rainy) day

Brian Nguyen

Brian Nguyen

By Julie Kang, Staff Writer

With the spring season come rainy days. You may not be able to go outdoors much, so you have to find other ways to entertain yourself — and maybe your friends — indoors. Here are several fun activities you can do inside when it is raining.\

Go to your favorite cafe

Use the dry days to explore different spots on campus. You may discover your new favorite study space or find your new favorite place to get coffee. There are many popular cafes on campus including Starbucks, Espresso Royale, Caffe Paradiso, BrewLab and Caffe Bene. There’s also Bevier Cafe, a student-operated restaurant and cafe on Goodwin Avenue. It sells breakfast, lunch foods and afternoon snacks for student-friendly prices. Buy your favorite drink and settle in for a cozy time.

Grab a book, do your homework or study

Snuggle under your covers with a book you’ve been wanting to read or find one that matches your interests using Goodreads. College life can get busy, so take this time to immerse yourself in a book or even a magazine. If you are loaded with homework or have an upcoming exam, motivate yourself to finish your work. Make your day productive by finishing whatever work you need to get done, and then feel free to relax.

Cook or bake

Ditch the takeout or dining hall and make your own food, whether it be a fancy meal or just ramen. If you’re feeling something sweet, bake a batch of cookies. The satisfaction that goes into eating food you made yourself will be worth the time put into it. You might even discover a new hidden talent.

Spend your day at the Illini Union

The Illini Union has many indoor activities you can participate in to pass the time. There is a recreation room in the basement with bowling alleys, billiards and arcade games, and it’s a perfect place to hang out with your friends. If you get tired and hungry, there are plenty of places in the building to eat, including Qdoba, Einstein Bros. Bagels, Sbarro, Auntie Anne’s and Wendy’s. The Illini Union also has films on the weekend, which gives students the opportunity to watch the latest movies for free. Check the Union’s event calendar for other events such as author signings and jam sessions.

Clean your room

One way to stay indoors and still be productive is to do some spring cleaning. Do your laundry, vacuum the floors, wash your sheets and fix up whatever else needs tidying. Even organizing your desk can make a difference in the overall cleanliness of your room. A nice cleaning session will leave you feeling happy and refreshed, and it will make your roommate happy to live in a more clean environment.

Go on a date with your laptop

Have a movie marathon or binge-watch all episodes of your favorite TV show. Do some online shopping to fulfill your guilty pleasures. Play trending games or  your childhood favorites. Turn on some music and have your own private jam session. Go through all your social media or watch YouTube videos. Write a poem or short story. There is a lot you can do on your laptop without having to get out of bed.

Play games with your friends

Put down the electronics and pass the time with games like Uno and Monopoly. Upgrade the game by placing bets and making punishments for the loser, which will make the game more intense. There are several places where you can rent games if you don’t have any, such as the Undergraduate Library or the SDRP. 

Catch up on sleep

If your sleep schedule has been a mess, use the weather as an excuse to sleep in or to take a long, restful nap. It will get you feeling fresh and ready to take on the rest of the week. Some people say the sound of rain soothes them and helps them fall asleep, so you might find you sleep better in this weather. Enjoy the feeling of being cozy and warm indoors while it is raining outside.

Hit the gym

Rainy weather can sometimes make you feel more dreary and less inclined to be active. Fight the urge to lay in your bed all day, put on workout clothes and go to the ARC or CRCE. You can swim laps, run on the treadmill or even sit in the sauna. There are often intramural sports or sports activities going on in the gyms that you can join or sign up for, so get active. It might just help you lose the freshman 15.

Go ice skating

Visit the Ice Arena next to the Armory with a group of friends. University students get free admission if you bring your i-card, so bring $2 and a little extra for skate rentals and snacks from the Ice Café. Dress warmly and bring gloves for a good time; you don’t have to be a good skater to enjoy being on the ice! Kill two birds with one stone: Get your workout in and have fun at the same time.

Meal prep

If you live in an apartment, you probably know the struggle of finding the time to make three meals per day. To avoid this, take this time to make a couple extra servings for later in the week. If you store away the helpings in your fridge, it will only take a couple minutes to heat them up in between classes, saving you a ton of time to relax or to catch up on homework for your next class.

Go shopping

There’s nothing like a rainy day to get a few chores out of the way. If you’ve been running low on toothpaste for a while, this is your chance to stock up. The same goes for toilet paper, paper towels or any other supplies you might need. Do you have any formal events coming up? Treat yourself  by buying a new outfit. Buying yourself something new is the perfect way to make your gloomy day a little brighter.

Julie is a freshman in Media.

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