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Need a Place to Study outside Home?

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Hello every one! How's your semester going? Isn't this semester went by soooooo quick? It is midterm time already. I cannot believe it!!! All papers deadlines and midterm exams are approaching. Are you ready yet? Do you need to find a place to study?

Hmmm....regarding to the pie chart I posted above, I have to admit that my routine of working from home would look not that much different. After thousands attempts, I finally gave up studying at home and started to seek study spaces on campus. Here is what I have came up with!

+++++they are all great on campus locations, which mean, free wireless internet, easy access to computer labs and printers, friendly staff members on site who might be able to give you a hand any time during your stay, and etc+++++

1.Deep quiet study areas in Wilson Library: they are my all time favorites!!!
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2.Coffee shops in Walter Library (basement) and Wilson Library (basement): Sadly they do not open on weekends but it would be great choice for those who need food and beverage refreshment close by on weekdays.

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3.Group study rooms with whiteboards in Walter, Wilson, Bio-Med, etc: great place for study groups and team projects!!!
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4. TechStop in 90 Blegan Hall on westbank: super close to Blegan connivence store and lunch place.
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5. Small breakout room in Jones Hall: you will need to check out keys from CLA language Center in the same building. Here is the small room calendar
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Happy Midterms & Studying everyone!!!

Experiencing a modern styled Japanese Izakaya

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As an international student from Asia, I always have an "Asian stomach" and crave for good Asian food. Here in the twin cities area, we get plenty great Asian restaurants. It is sooooooo hard for me to pick a favorite to write about. So I decide to write the one that I go most often this semester:) which is Zen Box!
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Zen Box is a very modern Japanese Izakaya(居酒屋).In Japanese, 居 means to stay, to live, 酒 means sake, liquor, and 屋 means shop,cover. Isakaya restaurants is like a combination of pub and kitchen. Hope this can give you a better understanding of what an Izakaya is. Zen Box has two locations in Minneapolis. The bigger one(yes, better menu and happy hour!) is located on 602 Washington Ave S., just a few blocks off U of M west bank campus.
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Their dishes are deigned to be shared, think "Japanese Tapas" or "Japanese Dim Sum"! They are small plates to share. The price is very affordable and the eating experience is always fun. Besides the small dishes, Zen Box also offer great Donburi(a kind of rice bowl) and Japanese Ramen! Happy hours runs 4-6pm and after 9pm Monday through Friday. It is really worth going if you get time:)

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As my final note, if you are above 21 years old, make sure you try their Chu Hai drinks. Chu Hai is an alcoholic drink that contains very low percentage of alcohol. Lychee flavored Chu Hai is the all time favorite drink of my friend Fannie and I!!! If you are still underage, you can ask the waiter to get you Lychee Soda, which is also really amazing:)
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Fun Things to do in the Fall

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Hello everyone, I found this amazing picture from a friend's twitter. It's taken in the upper state of Minnesota. Hmmm, with all the red leaves and a thick layer of snow, should we call it Fall or Winter? It's Minnesota...

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I am so glad that in the twin cities, the Fall is still here with us:) While keeping up with course work is important, it is also very important to relax yourself well on the weekends. The Twin Cities area is a great cosmopolitan that offers many exciting arts scene, landmark architecture, intriguing museums, and abundant natural resources. Before the real winter comes, fall might be our last opportunity to go outside with light clothing.

Here is a list of some fun things to do in the fall:
1.The twin cities area has miles of paved bike trails, it is a great season to go for a bike ride as well as capture the beauty of fall along the way. If you do not own a bike, the NiceRide offers quick, easy and affordable public bikes in the metro area.

2.For sports fans, it's college football season! The Minnesota Golden Gophers play at the TCF Banks Stadium on selected Saturdays. Be there and show your U of M spirit!

3.Minnesota is the state of the lakes. Nearby the U we can easily get to Lake Calhoun for a nice short trip then go explore restaurants, cafes, and boutique shops in the uptown area. If you do not mind driving up for 3 hours and half, Lake Itasca is also a great place to do a weekend trip.

4.Fall is also a great season for water activities. The Mississippi, Minnesota and St. Croix rivers pass through the twin cities and offers a various adventures on the water. One can do a kayak tour or a Mississippi cruise to take oneself down in the heart of the water and immerse oneself in the nature.

5. How can I almost forget about jogging! Besides the bike trials, the twin cities area also has a lot of fun walking paths.My favorite one is the St. Anthony Falls Heritage Board walking trail. Not only because it is so close to U of M, but also due to its beautiful scenery along this trail! This trail is a loop that along both sides of the river. It crosses over the Stone Arch Bridge and Hennepin Ave and will lead one to the Mill City Museum. After looping the trail, how laid back is to grab a cup of coffee and relax in the Water Power Park while enjoying the nice view of Mississippi river and downtown skyline!

Enjoy the prettiest season of Minnesota!

Greeting from Yi :)

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Hello everyone!!! My name is Yi. I came to the U.S. six years ago from Beijing, China. I firstly lived in California then I moved to Minnesota for college. Last spring, I finished my undergraduate studies at the U of M studying Sociology and German Studies. And now I am a first year sociology Ph.D student in the College of Liberal Arts. It is going to be my transition year from undergraduate to graduate student and I am very excited to share my life with you.

So I guess you might already have heard of how cold Minnesota can get in the winter, which might make you hesitate to come here. Actually, according to my past experiences in the past five years, the winter here is not as bad as what the thermometer reads:) With the convenient skyways and tunnel systems, you will survive Minnesota winter fine!

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