Skinny Kids

February 18, 2011

This video makes me a little sad. It’s sad because children, at a younger age, are starting to judge their bodies and truly believe that they are fat, when they aren’t at all. It also makes me sad, because I remember feeling the same way all through 7th and 8th grade and the majority of high school. But when I was younger, I never really gave it much thought. There are girls in this video that are 7 years old and already worrying about getting fat. Even though being overweight isn’t great for you or your health, constantly worrying about every little thing you eat, in my opinion, is equally as unhealthy. Some of the mothers express concern because their daughters are no longer eating full meals. They’re growing children, and they need to eat! One mother in particular believes that it’s her fault her daughter is acting this way. The mother is concerned about her own weight and body shape, and sees that it is rubbing off on her daughter. The father says “I believe it’s television,” but the mother truly believes it’s her fault. But I believe it’s the combination of the two. Actresses, singers, models, etc are all perceived as beautiful because they’re so thin, and it puts unnecessary pressure on normal women and girls. They think “oh, I’m not beautiful because I’m not stick thin like such-and-such model/actress/singer,” when in actuality they are beautiful. The mothers in this video worry about their self image, and since young children tend to mimic the habits of their parents, the mother’s worry about self image turns into the daughter’s worry about self image.

I’m not saying that I’m always comfortable or happy about my weight or body image, but it’s just sad to see girls at the age of 7 starting to worry like that. I’m glad I’ve seen this video before having children, because it shows me how what I do will affect my future children. It’ll allow me to figure out how to go about adjusting my body image/weight without affecting my children. One girl says “my mom checks her weight every Wednesday on the weighing machine.” If her daughter didn’t see her mother weigh herself every Wednesday, then perhaps her daughter wouldn’t pick up on the fact that her mother has her own problems with self-image. The parents should teach their children healthy eating habits and try to teach them to be happy with their bodies (even if the parents aren’t happy with their own).

In today’s society, there are increasing numbers of anorexic, bulimic, and obese people, so it will be difficult to break free of that. But, again, I feel it is the parents responsibility to teach their children how to eat right, be healthy, and be happy with themselves. It might be a tough challenge, but I think the children will benefit from it.

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Two Year Anniversary

February 15, 2011

Today was mine and my fiance Landon’s two year anniversary. 2 years ago was our first date, and 1 year ago was the day he proposed. I was just thinking back on our first date a few days ago. He had originally asked me out for Valentine’s Day, but I already had plans with some girlfriends to go bowling. Instead, we decided to go out for ice cream the day after. He came and picked me up from my apartment (I was ready a good hour before he was due to arrive – I was quite nervous). We went to Ben & Jerry’s in downtown Clemson. Unbeknown to us, Ben & Jerry’s had shut down. I was so unaware of it that I even tried to open the door, only to return my hand to my side and feel like an idiot. Luckily, I knew that Spill the Beans was just around the corner. So Landon, not having been there before (which I thought was CRAZY because it was my favorite place to get ice cream!), and I decided to go there instead. I don’t remember what we talked about, but I do remember talking up a storm and remembering to tell myself not to completely wolf down my ice cream. (I wanted to be dainty!) I remember really enjoying spending time with him, hoping he felt the same, and praying that there would be more dates in the future. Boy did I get lucky! The next day, he asked me to go grab a drink with him for happy hour. We went to Griffin’s downtown, and I tasted my first little beer (quite delish). After that, we started to get more comfortable with each other. I wasn’t AS nervous around him, scared I’d make a fool of myself…and now we’re to the point where I don’t care if I act crazy, and he still loves the accident-prone me just the same.

For our engagement, we were living in Huntsville, AL. We got Chinese for lunch, and I remember Landon barely eating. He didn’t feel well most of the day, and I was scared he was getting sick. I hoped he would feel well enough to go out to dinner (we had made plans to go to this nice restaurant called Grille 29). It snowed before we left to make our reservation at Grille 29, and though the drive was less than 5 minutes, we still managed to slip and slide on the ice. Thank goodness we made reservations because when we got in there, there must have been at least 2 or 3 other people there. (note the sarcasm). We had a delicious dinner – I got scallops, he got steak, and we both got Peroni (I couldn’t even finish my Peron; I thought it was so gross, but the food was amazing). He still looked a little ill (turns out it was just nerves), but afterward suggested we go get cheesecake from Target for dessert. As I carried the dessert up to the cashier, he gave me the keys to the truck, and said he had to go get something. I waited for him in the truck, and when he came back out he didn’t have a bag or anything on him, so I figured he didn’t find what he was looking for. When we got back to our apartment, he offered to take the dogs out. Once he came back in, he went right to our room and shut the door, while I sat on the couch watching tv. I just figured he was changing, but then he told me to close my eyes because he had something for me, and when he told me to open them again, he had this cute little stuffed dog held out in front of him. It was really cute, and while I was looking at it, he said “I have something else for you,” and when I looked up again, he was kneeling in front of me with the engagement ring in his hand and asked me to marry him. I remember calling mom, and she didn’t quite believe me at first, but then got super excited once she realized I wasn’t lying. Then she put me on the phone with dad (who had known for a week or so), but all he wanted to talk about was the weather – typical dad. After about an hour or so of talking to friends/family, it was back to life as normal, except this time as a fiancee and not a girlfriend. It was a wonderful feeling.

Tonight’s anniversary was special too. We went to Queen Anne’s Revenge, a pirate themed restaurant on Daniel Island. We got free chocolate cake after the waiter accidentally spilled honey mustard all on Landon’s jeans. That cake was divine! It was great getting to spend a special evening with my special man. It’s nice knowing that this relationship is actually going somewhere – the ultimate somewhere. I’m really lucky to have found a man I can call the love of my life, my other half, whatever gushy thing you would like to insert here…that is what I have and will have till death parts us.

Hope this post didn’t make you throw up! But if you did, I understand.

Finally Frizz-Free Hair!

February 15, 2011

I’ve never been one for hair products. My hair is so thin that usually anything more than volume shampoo and conditioner, and my hair gets super greasy. For example, I accidentally bought a 2-in-1 shampoo/conditioner and my hair was overly oily for a week. I had to wear a hat to cover it up and use clarifying shampoo religiously. But lately as the winter months dwindle to a close, I’ve started to notice that my hair has started to get really dry and frizzy when I blow dry it. I read in Cosmo about a product by Nexxus that you spray on before using blow dryers and straighteners, etc. Since I’m not really into hair products, this was like magic to me! I went to Wal-Mart, but couldn’t find it anywhere. I went to Target, and couldn’t find it either. So I decided on a leave in moisturizer. I sprayed it just on the lower half of my hair, and it worked pretty well. I found that my hair wasn’t as frizzy after a blow dry, but the hair near my roots were still looking rather shabby. I decided to go back to Wal-Mart to see if I could find that product, but what I found instead was Frizz-Ease: Heat Defeat. This was just like the Nexxus product I had been searching for, and I was stoked to buy it (especially since it was on sale). Ever since I’ve bought it, my hair has been looking MUCH better. No more frizzy hair all day long. Now when I’m done blow drying, my hair looks soft, silky, and frizz-free. For anyone, thin-haired or thick, I would definitely recommend this product! Not only will your hair LOOK better, it will be healthier and FEEL better.

Rue McClanahan, Blanche Devereaux from The Golden Girls, died today at the age of 76. I’d like to say that she was always my favorite character on the show, but that would be a lie. All four of those women were my favorite. Each one had such a different personality than the others. That’s what made the show so great, in my opinion. I still remember my first week as a freshman at Clemson University when I was going through sorority recruitment; I learned that Rue McClanahan was a member of Kappa Alpha Theta, the sorority that invited me to be a member. I still remember calling one of my friends in Memphis (he was and still is obsessed with the show, Blanche being his favorite) and telling him that I was now in the same sorority as Rue. Although it probably sounds pretty lame, I still thought it was neat; that I, a plain Jane, was a part of the same rituals that Rue was. Her spunk and charm as the flirtatious Blanche Devereaux on The Golden Girls will certainly help keep her memory alive for a very, very long time. She will certainly be missed. Rest in peace, Rue McClanahan.

Got Job?

June 2, 2010

I graduated from Clemson University in May 2009. Since I was unsuccessful in finding a job, I opted to do a public relations internship in Greenville until December. My fiance graduated from the same school in December 2009, and we decided to move to Huntsville, Alabama in search of jobs. At the time Huntsville seemed like a great place to start. We had heard that the cost of living was fairly low and that there was a great job market. My cousin works as an administrative assistant at a large company on the arsenal in Huntsville. She gave me the email address of the same person who hired her, and I have emailed him weekly since January to see if there were any available positions. I got so close to obtaining an administrative assistant job there. I got to go in and take the Microsoft Office exam, which I passed with flying colors, and I even got to go interview that same afternoon. My family, my fiance, and I had such high hopes that this would work out. My uncle said that obtaining this job would be a great way to get my foot in the door of a government job and that I could easily soar up to a great job using my Communications degree. However, a few weeks after I went in to test and interview, I received an email saying that the position I could have obtained was not going to be receiving any funding. Therefore, the position was completely terminated. Admittedly, I was pretty upset, but my hopes were kept alive by my family and my fiance (they’re always really supportive). My cousin kept informing me about positions that were opening up, but every time I’d send that weekly job inquiry email, I’d get the same response that nothing new has opened up. Then one day last week, I received an email saying they were going to be on a hiring freeze until September, which then changed to October. I was pretty upset, considering my hopes for a position at this company was one of the major factors in moving the Huntsville. My fiance has been having an equally hard time finding a job as well. He, like me, got as far as having an interview, but never heard anything back. The interviewer said that he would call even if to say they didn’t have anything available. I guess that was a bold-faced lie, since we have yet to hear back from him almost a month later. We’ve been using careerbuilder, monster.com, usajobs.gov, craigslist, etc looking for some sort of job other than a waitressing job or retail. I’m currently looking for administrative assistant and receptionist jobs. I KNOW I can do a great job, and I’ve always gotten really positive feedback from previous employers. I’ve even had one supervisor start crying on my last day because she didn’t want me to leave. It’s just disheartening to know that I can do a great job, that I’m a great worker, but I can’t show anyone because this economy is so terrible right now! And I know my fiance is a hard worker; he has great people skills, and he’s very knowledgeable in his field. I hate feeling like all of our hard work we put into getting our Bachelor’s degrees was for nothing (which I know in the long-run it won’t have been for nothing).

Right now I’m enrolled in the Kaplan University Post-baccalaureate Paralegal Certificate Program to, as you may have already guessed, get my paralegal certificate. My sister took the same course a few years ago, and she said she really enjoyed it. I’m hoping I like it just as much, and I’m going to put my all into this course so I don’t let my mom down, since she’s kind enough to pay for it. The process of enrollment and registering for classes seemed like it could have gone smoother, but I’ve got my deposit paid, and I’m signed up for the right classes, so I’m satisfied. It’ll be refreshing having something to do again.

Also, my fiance and I went to Randstad this morning to see if their staffing agency could help us find jobs. The woman we talked to just gave us her card and told us to create profiles on their website and they’d contact us if anything opened up. She said they currently had some administrative assistant jobs open, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that something comes of it. There have been many frustrating days in our quest to find jobs, but I’m very grateful for everything that my family and my fiance’s family have provided us. And I’m especially glad that I have the support of my fiance (and that I can support him too); it really helps me get through the jobless days.

I was reading Cosmo a few weeks ago, and there was this whole article about taking care of your skin – like using moisturizer and sunscreen and avoiding tanning beds…stuff like that. They mentioned the new Neutrogena Healthy Defense Daily Moisturizer with SPF 50 and helioplex.

It’s said to protect against UVA and UVB rays, and I thought I’d try it. I went to Target the next day, and when I finally located it, I saw that it cost almost $14. I don’t know about you, but I found that to be a bit much for a moisturizer. I thought, “Well, it’s a new product, so it might take a few weeks for the price to come down. I’ll just wait till then and use my SPF 15 moisturizer till then.” However, two days ago, my fiance and I went to Wal-Mart since they’re having really great deals right now. We went to get some new face wash, and I thought I’d see how much this moisturizer was priced here. It was only $10, which I thought was a good deal, since it was almost $14 at Target. I used it for the first time yesterday, and found it to be very different from my other moisturizer. It was a lot thicker and smelled different, but not bad. It smelled almost like sun screen (probably from it being SPF 50), and it was a tad on the greasy side, which the advertisement said it wasn’t greasy. Having my face smell like sun screen and the weather being as warm and humid as it was yesterday, I felt like I should be at the beach! This new moisturizer wasn’t life changing or anything, but I did enjoy knowing that while I was out in the sun, my skin was being protected more. This morning, however, I did wake up with a little breakout on my left cheek, but nothing too terrible. I might save the SPF 50 for the days when I know I’ll be out in the sun more though (I’m usually an indoor person, since I’m not a fan of temperatures above 75 degrees). But I would definitely recommend this moisturizer to anyone who likes to be outside all the time. It’ll definitely keep your face safe from sunburn and wrinkles due to sun damage. Make sure to take care of your skin now, so you can be as pretty tomorrow as you are today.

Parody
Untitled
I was in a bad mood when I parodied this poem. My diction should definitely show this. I’m not ashamed that it shows my emotions. I’m actually glad that I was able to put my real emotions into a parody and make it my own.

Original: Edna St. Vincent Millay
Thou art not lovelier than lilacs, –no,
Nor honeysuckle; thou art not more fair
Than small white single poppies, — I can bear
They beauty; though I bend before thee, though
From left to right, not knowing where to go,
I turn my troubled eyes, nor here nor there
Find any refuge from thee, yet I swear
So has it been with mist, — with moonlight so.

Mine:
You are not lovelier than rot fruit, — no,
Nor porcupine; you aren’t less foul there
Than a giant gorilla,–I can hardly bare
Your face; though you bend before me, though
From to and fro, not know where to go,
I turn my beautiful eyes not here not there
Can’t get away from you, but I swear
Just like I can’t get away as my thoughts grow.

Free Verse
Dinner
I wrote this poem about a year and a half ago, and put it into a book of poem that I have written. i like all of them, but am only going to put one in here. They’re all free verse. This is one of my favorites; I like it because of the imagery and diction.

I enter a room where intoxicating scents have already permeated through.
A perfect blend of tastes and textures surround me,
And I am enveloped with a certain satisfaction that some rarely feel.
I indulge myself, and as this delectable food enters my mouth,
There is an explosion of taste and my body is filled
With a warmth that makes the whole meal worthwhile.
After all is gone,
I can only sit back with full satisfaction
And try to let the tastes linger as long as possible.

I know these aren’t awesome, jaw-dropping poems or anything, but they take me back to days when I was a little more imaginative. I hope you’ve enjoyed them!

Elegy
An Elegy Written on a Bale of Hay
I chose to write my elegy on the topic of when my father and I used to pick raspberries because it’s one of my favorite memories about us. It was what he and I did alone. No one else was included, and every time we went out to pick them, it seemed like the perfect day. This poem just has a lot of personal meaning behind it, and at the end when I say I’ve done the same thing with my son, that’s me hoping that this memory will play out again for me when I become a mother.

Ever so often on a clean, crisp day,
I stand and ponder some old things
We did before he went away,
Before he sailed the sky with wings.

A small girl stood on a bale of hay.
The tall man helped her pick her merries.
After being there long one day,
They go inside, hands red from berries.

That day – a perfect one –
Father and daughter did bond.
Laughter and loving fun
Have made them sincerely fond.

Now on days when the wind does carry,
I stand by that same bale of hay
Helping my son pick the self-same berry
My father and I picked day after day.

Found Poem
The Passing of a Storm
The original piece is from a wonderful book, All Quiet on the Western Front. When I chose the words in my prose piece, I sat there pondering them for a few minutes trying to think how all of these words related somehow. Then I though of all the sense, and thought that describing a storm would be a good way to incorporate the words and the senses.

Original Prose Piece:
…My legs and my hands tremble. I have trouble in finding my water bottle, to take a pull. My lips tremble as I try to think. But I smile – Kat is saved.
After a while I begin to sort out the confusion of voices that falls on my ears.
“You might have spared yourself that,” says an orderly.
I look at him without comprehending.
He points to Kat, “He’s stone dead.”
I do not understand him. “He has been hit in the shin,” I say.
The orderly stands still, “That as well.”
I turn round. My eyes are still dulled, the sweat breaks out on me again, it runs over my eyelids. I wipe it away and peer at Kat. He lies still. “Fainted,” I say quickly.
The orderly whistles softly. “I know better than that. He is dead. I’ll lay any money on that.”
I shake my head: “Not possible. Only ten minutes ago I was talking to him. He has fainted.”
Kat’s hands are warm, I pass my hand under his shoulders in order to rub his temples with some tea. I feel my fingers become moist. As I draw them away from behind his head, they are bloody.

My Piece:
I step outside to see the sky.
As though I’m wrapped in warm, moist covers,
I notice flocks of birds fly by;
They do not stop to pause or hover.

The tree in the distance begins to tremble.
It is a sign of upcoming trouble.
Animals flee from the symbol.
I need to smile, but my fears just double.

The sky becomes so dark,
And it is getting loud.
The clouds are turning stark,
I shout for help – not proud.

Ear-piercing whirlwinds circle ahead.
I flee like others for my life
For cover underneath the shed.
And wait for an end to my strife.

In there I hear the loudest thud
Of raindrops falling to the ground.
From up above come trickles of mud.
I hope that I can be found.

Now things have become quite still.
I do not know what’s going on,
And down my back is running a chill.
I push up the door to see the dawn.

The clouds have dispersed, and lights shines through.
A wind whistles softly, and birds come alive.
The sun is quite warm and soothing too.
The creatures rejoice – continue to thrive.

It is/I am
A New Year, A Big Change
This poem tells of how I changed once I turned sixteen. My inspiration actually came from the word “exactly.” I wanted to say “it is exactly…” After a conversation with my sister the night I wrote this poem, I knew that this inspiration could be used. The conversation with my sister was about how I used to beg her for rides so I wouldn’t be caught riding in a mini-van with my parents. Then I remembered how great it was to be able to drive on my own.

It is exactly seven days before Halloween.
I am turning sixteen years old.
Everything is changing before my eyes.
I am more mature, and I can legally drive.
no longer will I be that annoying child
Begging my older sister for a ride
So I wouldn’t be caught
Riding in a mini-van with my parents.
Now I am free;
Free to drive anywhere my heart desires.
I could drive across the whole United States
If my heart desired.
My options, once so limited,
In an instant become an endless wonder.
I am no longer that helpless kid with no ride,
But now I am the one
Being pestered by other unlicensed peers.
Oh how the tables have turned.

When I was in high school, I was in an advanced writing class. We had to make a book of poetry, and I recently found mine.

Ballad
The Ballad of a Rebellious Bonnie
This idea came to me as I was thinking about the Shel Silverstein poem “I cannot go to school today.” After I wrote the first two lines, the rest just came to me. I decided to give a mother and father voice in there to show that this is taking place at the dinner table. My favorite part of this poem is the second to last line because I thought it was a cute pun.

“I can not eat this food today,”
Said Bonnie as she stepped away.
“There are too many vegetables,
I’d rather go outside and play.”

“But Bonnie,” said her mother dear,
“You need to eat this; it’s quite clear.
For i you do not eat this now,
You’ll never get too big, I fear.”

“Your mother’s right, my pumpkin pie,”
Replied her father with a sigh.
“Listen to her; she knows what’s right.
You’ll grow strong, and that’s no lie.”

So Bonnie stepped up to the plate,
And at last her food she ate.

Dramatic Monologue
I Didn’t Do It
When I thought about a one-sided event, a wreck suddenly came to mind. It seemed perfect because, and I can’t say from experience, it seems as though each person has her own side of the story to tell.

“What were you thinking?
You must have been blinking
When that green light turned to red!”
“I did no wrong! The light was still yellow!” she said.
No nice words such as “what did I do?”
“Did I harm you?
Or “Is everyone alright?”
I was angry despite
Being shaken from the jolt
That came in one big bolt.
Everything was a mess,
And I, in distress,
Called my parents to the crime scene.
A wrecker came by to clean
Away the bent up pieces of
One of the things that you love.
“You haven’t heard the last of this,”
That mean lady said with a hiss.
My life was just shattered along
With my windows so strong.
Now I have to rely on my feet to get me by.
Oh tragedy sure struck
On my day of bad luck.

There are more, but I’ll post more later. These poems may not be that great, but that’s why I like poetry. It can be whatever you want.

Orphan

July 29, 2009

orphan
We went to see Orphan the other day. I was hoping it would be crazy, creepy and intense, and I definitely got what I wished for. To me, the movie was like “The Good Son” and “The Bad Seed” mixed, but with a twist ending. ***SPOILER ALERT*** I totally did not see it coming when the young orphan girl turned out to be a 33 year old who had escaped from an insane asylum. Throughout the whole movie I kept asking myself “how can a young girl do such horrible things?” It kind of made me not want kids in case they turned out to be like this one; however, I just told myself “it’s just a movie” and got over it. While watching the movie, I kept putting myself in the mom’s shoes, and my heart wrenched every time something bad happened to her children. I also felt frustrated for her when her husband and psychiatrist didn’t believe a word she said and tried to put her into rehab. I thought Aryana Engineer did a good job playing the deaf daughter (Max Coleman). Isabelle Fuhrman (Esther) was a very convincing actress. She made such an impression on me that if I were to see another movie with her in it, I might not be able to see past her playing Esther. Overall, I enjoyed the movie; it was what I was hoping for and more.