Category Archives: Food

It’s Fall Y’all!

By Brianna Ma

‘Tis the season of pumpkin spice lattes, snuggling up on your couch, and holidays like Halloween and Thanksgiving. Fall is a time to breathe in the crisp cool weather, break out your sweaters and scarves, and of course eat everything pumpkin. Here are some of my favorite fall traditions.

Visit a Pumpkin Patch 

Photo is author’s own

One of my favorite traditions is going to local pumpkin patches with my family or friends and picking out pumpkins to bring home and decorate. Most pumpkin patches sell things like hot apple cider and some even have small rides!

Carve a Pumpkin

Photo is author’s own

Once you’ve selected your pumpkin, you get to carve it up and decorate it! You can find simple ideas online and most stores sell relatively inexpensive pumpkin carving tools! Here’s an example of the pumpkin that I carved last year!

Indulge in Pumpkin Spice Latte Everything 

Photo from Pixabay

When I was younger, the most memorable food of the season was pumpkin pie and candy corn but now that PSL (pumpkin spice lattes) have taken over, there is a whole world of pumpkin spice flavored things that are full of festive flavor.

Enjoy the Warmth of Bonfires 

Photo from Unsplash

The best part of any bonfire is S’MORES!! It you’re like me and love late night sweets then this is the fall tradition for you. A s’more is a toasted marshmallow sandwiched between Graham crackers and chocolate. This sugary concoction is best served over an open flame but if you live in an apartment there are also microwave and oven safe variations.

Binge with Movie Marathons 

Photo by Marian Ladiona on Flickr

“Halloween Town”, “Hocus Pocus”, and “It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown” are my absolute favorite fall movies and I definitely recommend watching them to get into the Halloween spirit. Fall weather tends to be chilly so a great way to embrace the season is to cuddle up on the sofa with a mug of hot apple cider and marathon a bunch of feel good movies. A popular alternative movie night is to binge watch horror movies (but I am a scaredy cat and I do not enjoy scary movies!)

Go Fake Camping 

Photo by Paul on Flickr

This is one of my favorite childhood memories. My friends and I always loved the idea of camping but didn’t love the idea of bugs, a lack of restrooms, and long drives so we would set up a tent in the living room or backyard. We would bring in snacks and sleeping bags and pretend that we were in the mountains exploring the great outdoors.

Bake Cookie and other Fall Treats

Photo by Kurman Communications, Inc. on Flickr

There’s nothing more cozy than a warm oven wafting the smell of fresh baked goods. The oven warms a chilly house and the baked goods make the room smell amazing. PLUS, you get fun treats to share (or you can eat them all yourself!)

Soak in the Season at Disneyland 

Photo by Loren Javier on Flickr

As an avid Disney fan, one of my favorite things is watching the park transform each season. The fall season brings out pumpkin desserts and spooky decorations!

I hope you have an amazing fall season and that you get to make memories that turn into traditions!

Featured image by Scott Webb on Unsplash

Brianna is a first year graduate student at the Keck School of Medicine studying Global Medicine. She is Chinese, British and Irish and currently lives and studies at the HSC (health science campus). Born and raised in Southern California, Brianna received her bachelor’s degree in biological sciences and medical anthropology. Brianna is passionate about research and volunteering and loves trying new things. In her free time she enjoys reading, dancing, trying new foods, and traveling! Brianna was a resident adviser in a community that had international housing and her family hosts international high school students!

Exploring San Diego

By Stephanie Wicburg

While San Diego may be best known for its beaches or attractions such as Sea World, as a native, I know that there are several other less-known opportunities that anyone can enjoy. San Diego is probably best known for its beaches, including the beaches in La Jolla, Coronado, Oceanside, or Moonlight Beach, and in addition to the multitudes of beaches, you may have also heard of San Diego’s many feature attractions such as Sea World, the Safari Park, or Legoland.  What you may not have heard of, however, are many of the other features of my beautiful hometown.

If you are a nature enthusiast, there are several opportunities throughout various parts of San Diego.  For hiking, there are several locations around San Diego of varying length and difficulty, all with beautiful greenery.  Some of these locations include the Torrey Pines trail in Torrey Pines (known as a relatively easy hike with two trails approximately a mile each) and the multitude of hiking trails in Poway, a subcommunity of San Diego, specifically the Blue Sky Ecological Reserve (known for its native plants and wildlife, and is also a relatively easy hike).

Photo from Wikimedia Commons

Alternatively, if you are more into the bar or club scene, the Gaslamp Quarter in downtown is a good place to go. With at least 16 clubs and restaurants there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy the beautiful atmosphere of the city.  On a side note to this interest though, if you are interested in a day-time version of this activity, San Diego is also well known for its vineyards, are there are plenty of opportunities to visit and attend wine tastings (I personally recommend the Bernardo Winery in Rancho Bernardo or any of the vineyards in the nearby area of Temecula).

Photo by Ted McGrath on Flickr

There is also the opportunity to see many parts of San Diego’s history in downtown in Little Italy or in many of the available historical sites such as the USS Midway, Balboa Park.  I highly recommend Balboa Park.  As the host to various exhibits throughout the year in its in-house museums (including San Diego’s Natural History Museum), and also some of the best gardens, Balboa Park is a wonderful place to spend a day exploring and enjoying the sunny warm weather typical for San Diego.

All in all, San Diego is a very diverse city, with much to offer anyone who is interested and I am proud to call it home. Happy traveling!

Featured image from NeedPix

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Best Boba

By Erika Gomi

It’s a late night on campus and you’re working hard. But then it hits you. The craving for boba. Now, since you’re a USC student you have two major options for boba nearby: Boba Time and Cup o’ Joy. But which one should you choose to give your money to? Here is a helpful guide to cure your late night boba cravings.

Boba Time

If you’re on the West side of campus, Boba Time is the closest option to you. Right by the local Taco Bell, all you have to do is exit out of the gates by KAP. It’s orange themed décor welcomes you as you take a step inside. Boba time has a modern feel and extensive menu. They serve coffees, slushes, smoothies, milk foams, milk teas, etc. They even sell acai bowls and macarons for those late-night munchies. The acai bowls are around the same price as Nektar and Amazebowls, around $8. The boba however, is much cheaper. And guess what? Unlike most places, they don’t charge extra for boba! If you order just a milk tea or iced tea, it’s around $3.25. What a steal!

Cup o’ Joy

If you’re on the East side of campus, Cup o’ Joy is probably the closer option. Walk past Gateway and up the street past CVS. It’s a little bit of a trek, but if you love boba, you’ll power through. Cup o’ Joy has a menu very similar to Boba Time, however boba costs extra. The good thing about Cup o’ Joy is that it’s surrounded by other food options. Nearby you have, Subway, Ono’s, and Blaze, to name a few. If boba isn’t enough to satisfy your hunger, you can easily go to another restaurant. However, there’s really no need. Cup o’ Joy, in addition to its many choices in beverage, has food to. You can get a meal set consisting of rice and Chinese fried chicken or just a snack of takoyaki. But if you’re just in the mood for a drink, compared to Boba Time, Cup o’ Joy costs just a little more money, a little more than $4.

Which place is more worth it to visit? That’s really up to you and your taste. If you’re a boba connoisseur, then neither of these places will please you. But if you want something cheap and nearby, you have these two great options.

Photo by Jocelyn & Cathy on Instagram

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