As a college instructor, here are the essentials.
  1. The Hermione Granger magic wand I bought at Universal Studios. I pull it out whenever students come by to tell me that "life" has gotten in the way of "academics." It has made crazy exes disappear and stolen laptops reappear.
  2. Nine almonds. My go-to 100 calorie snack. Health experts say that your snack must be around 100 calories. The logic is as follows: 1) Having a larger snack will sabotage my wholesome nutrition at mealtime. 2) Not having a 100 calorie snack will inevitably lead to succumbing to a 1,500 calorie candy bar.
  3. Box of tissues. These come out after I tell my students that the wand does not work, and they have to fix their own lives.