Saturday, May 4, 2013

What I Do In My Spare Time by Emily Cote

So...just this past year, I've become...I guess you could say...a little bit of a Youtube watcher. Most of you probably don't know that about me, because it's not something I advertise, but it's something I enjoy doing in my spare time. Instead of watching tv, I keep up with their new videos. And JacksGap was the first channel I started watching last fall. There are quite a few different channels I watch but they're my favorite. They're pretty great and let's just face it...adorable. I don't care what logic you drag it through, they're adorable and they have British accents. Let that sink in.
Anyway, last Monday they posted a new video and I thought it was super fun and now I want to turn my bedroom into a ball pit. Take a look and enjoy.


Thursday, May 2, 2013

Salted Pretzel Caramel Brownies...SAY WHAT by Grace Barbettini

Salted. Pretzel. And Caramel. In a BROWNIE. Oh my lanta. Yes, you heard me alright.

I'll just cut to the chase and give you the recipe. Yuuuumm-o.






Here you go - Click ME!

Beauty in the Ugly by Grace Barbettini

     Emily Cote's post this morning inspired me. Like her, I too had set an alarm in hopes of getting lots of things accomplished by noontime, only to find myself waking up at noon instead.
     Feeling a bit frustrated, I also went on Facebook to check in on my friends lives, and see if I could find anything chipper that would change my not so happy mood. That's when I came across her post on the Quirk. I'm so glad I took the time to read it, because it sparked something inside of me. 
     In "Weeping for the Kids" Marilyn said something that really hit me - "There is Beauty all around us..." and I think this is something that we overlook a lot of the time. Sure, everyone knows that the Eiffel Tower is beautiful, that the beach is a gorgeous place to be, and that if you have flowers planted in your front yard, it is a pretty thing. But that is not what I am talking about.  A quote by Marcel Proust popped into my head as I'm writing this - "The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes." We get so caught up in our everyday lives that common things become so dull and mundane, that we need something so grandeur and strikingly beautiful to catch our eyes. Why not be thrilled with the ordinary? If you choose to see things in a different light, with new eyes that haven't been dulled by the thinking of our society, you may be surprised at what is around you. I encourage you to take the time and walk around your neighborhood, or local park. Get up close to the grass, notice all of the life that is going on around you. The delicate way an ant picks up a crumb, the gentle drops of water from a leaf after rainfall, or even the way rust peels off of an old can. 
     Children are perfect examples. When you're a little kid, almost everything excites you. Even if it's not the typical thing to get excited about. Why do we have to grow out of that incredible awe over everything? I say we don't. Yes, we become used to certain things, but why not step back and start with fresh eyes, becoming unused to everything all over again.
     I encourage you to go out today and look for the beauty that is around you. Not the typical beauty, but the kind that gets overlooked. Find something beautiful in the ugly. And once you have found it, ponder awhile. Whenever I find something beautiful, it always stirs up thoughts of thankfulness. I saw another quote one day and it said "Gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions." and I absolutely love that. Even if you don't fee like thanking God for simple things in your life, once you start, you begin to see how fortunate you are, and by the end, I always feel so happy.

Go out there today and find something beautiful.
Go out there today and give thanks for the everyday things.   
     Go out there today and be awed by the ordinary.

Weeping For The Kids by Marilyn Gardner: Shared by Emily Cote

This morning I rolled out of bed later than I had anticipated, and already felt irritated with myself for not setting an alarm. Then I looked around my room to see that it looks like a hurricane just blew in. To be honest, I wasn't all that chipper when I woke up, underneath it all is the fact that my last day of high school is next week, and I have to say goodbye to people, and it's scaring me. I've been on the verge of tears for a good part of the week. Then I got on Facebook to check the everyday things that might make me laugh or sometimes just more frustrated than I was before. But then I saw that my Dad's cousin (I call her Aunt but that's another story.) had posted in her blog, and that always interests me, because she's so full of wisdom and I love her perspective on life. When I read this post in particular, I was amazed at God's incredible faithfulness to us, even when things look like they're going all wrong. A look at my generation and how sad it is that the majority of them are rejecting God. But he never leaves us. Even in times of great suffering. If you have a few minutes in your day, please take a look at it. It made me thankful today.

http://communicatingacrossboundariesblog.com/2013/05/02/weeping-for-the-kids/

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Disney's Forthcoming Animated Feature: "Frozen"


Walt Disney Pictures will release their 52nd feature-length animated film this November, entitled Frozen. Those who pay attention to this sort of thing will know that this project has been in development since early 2006, back when it was called The Snow Queen, a title it shares with the Hans Christian Anderson story upon which it’s ostensibly based. It suffered from lots of production problems and significant amounts of re-tooling, as well as taking a backseat to Tangled for a time, but now we’re finally getting it.
What we know about the film is that it’s centered around Anna and Elsa, sisters voiced by Kristen Bell and Idina Menzel, respectively (the two provide singing talents as well). Disney hasn’t released a trailer, but from the brief official synopsis as well as leaked information and concept art, it seems that Elsa can secretly control ice, making her the subject a prophecy that one who can do just that will bring eternal winter on the kingdom. Elsa flees when her secret is discovered during some sort of coronation (Anna and Elsa are princesses) and builds an ice castle for herself, complete with snowman guards. Anna strikes out to find her, helped along the way by mountain man Kristoff, voiced by Jonatahn Groff.
The film is directed by Chris Black and Jennifer Lee, and will have original songs composed by Kristen Anderson-Lopez, along with her husband Robert Lopez, half of the Tony-award winning team behind the musical Avenue Q. Part of one of the songs, Elsa’s lamentatious “Let it Go” has been leaked, and can be heard performed by a member of the podcast and YouTube team, The Rotoscopers. (They discuss and speculate on the film in-depth for like fifteen minutes in the link below.)
All considered, it looks like an awesome movie, so buy you’re tickets once they’re available, and slap anyone who judges you for still wanting to go see animated Disney movies.

Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3rAOLVkieEU&feature=fvwp

Friday, April 19, 2013

This Is A Post Entirely Of Cats by Grace Barbettini

Here, have some cats.
Because, if we're all being honest here, you just can't ever see enough cat photos.
















Mean Girls: The Musical! by Robyn Scott

Yep, you read right!
Writer of the movie, Tina Fey, is in the process of turning the ever-adored cult classic, Mean Girls, into a musical.

Amanda Seyfried, who originally acted the role of Karen Smith in Mean Girls, played an unintelligent sidekick to the movies antagonist IT girl, Regina George (Rachel McAdams). However, now that it's going the musical route, and Seyfried has clearly shown us her wonderful ability to sing (Mama Mia! Les Miserables, etc.) she is hoping to snag the role of Regina.

Read more about it!

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/17/amanda-seyfried-mean-girls-musical-actress-wants-to-play-regina-george_n_3103373.html

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Dove Real Beauty Sketches by Grace Barbettini

I know this video has been posted quite a lot recently, but it is too powerful not to share again.


"The Dove Real Beauty Sketches" campaign, is meant to encourage women to reassess how they see themselves.

We all have that one thing about ourselves that we personally dislike. Whether it be our eye shape, nose, teeth, freckles, hair, etc., we unknowingly magnify it. This video shows how our self-image perception is always mangled, only viewing the bad parts about ourselves and never seeing the beautiful parts. We have this tendency to think that it is worse than it actually is, and then we begin to believe it. 
Maybe someone made fun of one of your features, maybe you have a scar, or maybe you've just never felt pretty. You have the power to change that. You don't have to view yourself with a self-loathing perspective.
Next time you hear yourself saying "I wish I had a different this... or a better that...or I don't like my...." Just stop. 
Don't do it.
Instead, tell yourself "You are beautiful." And don't let yourself think "Yeah right" afterwards. Don't go there. Even if you don't believe it right away, don't stop telling yourself. Have confidence in who you are, and over time you just might begin to see a change.

Oftentimes we keep fighting who we naturally are, trying to be something we're not. Always wishing we had this, and that, instead of what we do have. But really, are we getting anywhere with that mentality? I used to wish that I had straight hair so bad. Like, really, really, really bad. I absolutely hated my curls. Finally, I just gave up. I realized that even if I can straighten my hair, genetically, it's never going to change. Why keep fighting? Why be unhappy, striving to get it straight, when instead, I could be happy if I accepted my hair the way it was? Over time, I learned to embrace it, and now I actually like my hair. Of course I still have those days where I think  "Man, it'd be so much easier to have straight hair right about now." but, then I remember that the grass is always greener on the other side. So, the next time you think along those lines, just forget the rest, don't think about "the others".
 Love what you have.

I came upon this quote the other day and it just hit me like a ton of bricks.

"The thing that is really hard, and really amazing, is giving up on being perfect and beginning the work of becoming yourself."
— Anna Quindlen

I think one of the most amazing and wonderful things about embracing yourself for who you are is that you become a freer person in life. What are we when we're self-conscious, embarrassed, and afraid of how we look? We're worried. Worrying what everyone's going to think, worrying that we look weird, worrying that we might not fit in.
And guess what? If we accept our personalities, traits, and bodies that God gave us,  we let go of those worries. We don't have to fret about the others anymore. And what does that leave us with?
A person who is free.  


I wish that everyone could be able to have the opportunity that the women in the video had.
Because I think that we would all be greatly surprised if we were able to view ourselves through a different pair of eyes.







Catching Fire Trailer by Emily Cote

      If you you're a Hunger Games fan, you'll be excited to see the brand new trailer for Catching Fire! Personally, I'm a big fan, read all the books and loved the first movie. Fingers crossed that this one will be just as good or better! Check it out. Leave a comment and let us know what you think. 



PICTURES OF BOSTON MARATHON BOMBING RELEASED by Mikayla Halsell

VIDEOS AND PICTURES OF TWO SUSPECTS OF BOSTON MARATHON BOMBING RELEASED.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=M80DXI932OE



FOR MORE PHOTOGRAPHS, CLICK "HERE".





Website of pictures and videos below:
--PICTURES AND VIDEO OF SUSPECTS RELEASED--

TIPS FOR FBI: 1-800-CALL-FBI



CONFIRMED: Video of Interest (from Boston Marathon Bombing) to be Released by Mikayla Halsell

CONFIRMED: The FBI will be releasing the video that they've been looking at to find the persons of interest around 5:00pm ET. Tune in to watch the story unfold and to hear what the FBI will reveal in regards to their investigation.


Click the link below for more details.




Hair Styles for Prom by Mikayla Halsell

       So, Prom, as I'm sure you're all aware, is approaching. Most likely, by now, you've either borrowed a dress from a friend or bought a brand new one and have acquired shoes and accessories to go along with it. But have you put any thought into what you're going to do with your hair? If you're like me at all, you're probably saving that decision for the day of. Well, here are a few styles that you can consider when that day comes. At least you'll have an idea of what you want to do.

For those who want to put their hair up:






















 *Click here for the Fishtail Tutorial
*Click here for the Swirl Turorial


For those who want their hair down:







       Well, I hope you liked some of those styles. Or if not, hopefully they sparked some ideas for some other styles that are more you. Either way, have fun! And I hope you have an awesome time at Prom!


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Spring is Upon Us by Emily Cote

       Well it's that time of year again. The craziness that makes your head spin, the last few days of being able to have your windows down in the car without getting heat stroke (if you live in Texas anyway) and of course, it's graduation time. All of these things will be here before you know it, so let me give you some helpful tips on how to survive.

1. Don't wait to buy a bathing suit until it's so hot you can't stand it and then you get invited to go to the lake with these super awesome people and you don't have anything to swim in besides your four year old "mom" bathing suit that you'd be completely mortified if anyone saw you in it.... Wow, that was a mouthful. Just....go buy a bathing suit.

2. I'm not sure what happens after graduation. If it's weird right away or if you get to next September and you feel strange that you're not going back to school, but I can tell you that I'm in the midst of graduation madness and you can't procrastinate. I don't care about the blog post I wrote a few weeks ago about Senioritis (it's still a real thing but don't let it consume you), there are deadlines to be met and you won't graduate if you don't meet them. So write things down. Make a check list. Get organized.

3. Wear sunscreen. Like all the time. If you're as white as me, then wear sunscreen all day, everyday. Otherwise you'll look like a lobster. Like all the time.

4. Make sure you buy enough graduation invites because if you don't there will always be that one person you didn't think of and the whole world will fall apart. Seriously.

5. If you're getting a summer job, make sure you start thinking about where you want to apply so you can beat the summer rush of eager high schoolers. Also if you'll need any time off during the summer for vacation or anything, think about it and speak up. Bosses don't like it if you don't let them know ahead of time.

6. Make time for friends and family in your spare time. It's easy to get caught up in your own schedule and forget about the awesome people in your life. They care about you and you shouldn't let graduation or a new job or anything else get in the way.

7. Is your air conditioning in your car working? Yeah...didn't think of that did you? You might want to do something about that before it gets so hot out that you can't breath and you feel like you'll melt right onto the sidewalk.

8. Last but not least...Make a summer/spring music playlist on your ipod, Spotify or whatever special music thinger you use. Music sets the mood for whatever you're going through so, pull out those songs that remind you of summer and road trips and the beach and put them together in one happy place and get stuff done! For this season, put away your depressing, angsty music that you listen to when you're trying to study for a test, or you just broke up with that one guy. Just do us all a favor and listen to some up beat music, you're almost done.

      I hope this was encouraging enough to get you motivated to get some things done this Spring! But don't forget to put your windows down and blast some music.




Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Much Ado About Nothing by Mikayla Halsell


There's much ado going on in the city of Manhattan and these two hippies are caught up in the middle of it... 

You won't want to miss out on this exquisite production!! To purchase tickets, contact any Journalism member or anyone on the Theater cast. They're only $5 each and going quickly. So be sure to get them before they're sold out!  

Dates: April 26-27 
Time: The performances start at 7:00 and the doors open at 6:30



DIY Map Envelopes by Grace Barbettini



Feeling crafty? Here's a fun idea for your next letter-writing-adventure. Print out a map from your house to your friends' house and fold into an envelope!

For instructions, click the link below.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Useful Facts by Caleb Warren


1. Chocolate syrup is not made, but is actually just cocoa in its purest form. We get it by drilling near large patches of cocoa bean plants. It is then refined and bottled.

2. The trilogy of Star Wars prequels was actually just 20th Century Fox’s decade-spanning April Fool’s joke on the rest of us.

3. Literally no one actually enjoys watching golf. Anonymous studies have proven this.

4. James Franco is not a bad actor, he’s actually just been asleep since 2002.

5. Apart from humans, dolphins are the only species known to be able to grow mustaches, but they shave them because dolphins are very self conscious.

6. There’s no such thing as reindeer, just really fancy regular deer.

7. Blind people smile when they’re happy, despite never having seen anyone else do so. Blind people also know how ridiculous you look when you do duck face.

8. Although many point to The Sopranos or Arrested Development as the best television series of all time, a newly developed algorithm has determined that the greatest tv show ever was actually Mental, a Fox medical drama that ran for eight episodes in 2009 and focused on a British psychiatrist who doesn’t play by the hospital’s precious rules.

9. Life used to be a musical; in Eden, Adam and Eve would often break into song, complete with choreography that they and all the animals inherently knew. This aspect of human life was in The Fall.

10. No one ever spoke Latin. Its a myth made up by academics to make themselves sound smarter when they use it in emails.

11. Navy blazers are so 1990s. You look absurd.

12. Iguanas are chameleons that aren’t trying hard enough.

13. If you’re in a hot tub with a cigarette you can get lung cancer even if you don’t smoke it.

14. Even owls are over the owl jewelry trend.

15. All celebrities are part of a secret cabal bent on taking over the world. There is no escape.

16. If you’re writing a play and need a monologue for a heartless villain character, go pick out anything said by one of the protagonists in Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged. It’s just what you’re looking for.

17. Global warming is God punishing us for letting Two and Half Men run for this long.

18. Superheroes are real, they’re all just really lazy.

19. Clocks spin counterclockwise in Australia.

20. The harp is the easiest instrument to play. It’s just a bunch of strings that you pluck and strum.

21. The title of this post is a lie, there’s actually 21 useful facts here, including this one.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Sedona, Arizona by Emily Cote


      This week I spend two days in Arizona assisting my wonderful Photography teacher while she took one of my good friends senior pictures. This trip was everything we hoped for and more! It was amazing and crazy all at once. So let me recap.
The adventure started out before we even took off. We were set to take off at 6:30am on Tuesday morning, but late Monday we got a text from Southwest Airlines saying that our flight was cancelled, so we took off for the airport at around 4:30 and caught a flight forty-five minutes later. We got to the airport and didn't check any bags because we were only going to be there for two days, so me being the airhead I am, didn't bring travel sized bottles of shower stuff. They pulled me aside and told me to "Read the fine print next time." They ended up throwing away my shampoo, shaving cream (that was expensive, I might add) and mouse for my hair. Not a super fun start, but from that point on, we decided our motto for the trip was, "Just go with it!" And we did.
      We finally made it Phoenix Arizona, we got our rental and got on the road. We got lost once and then found our way, but never forgetting our motto! Our first stop was a random exit we took to see what we could find in the Arizona wilderness. We ended up in Black Canyon in a neighborhood looking for a bathroom, but instead ended up finding an old 1950's truck a midst a sea of junk in someones yard. Mrs. Purkiss, being that outgoing person that she is, marched into their yard and knocked on the door. Grace and I stayed in the car waiting for her. When she came back she was smiling and laughing with the owner of the house, they looked like old friends already! That's when we met Chris. She was such a genuine, sweet, rough around the edges person, and we loved her. She let us shoot pictures in her yard for an hour and a half. We couldn't believe how fast time went! She even gave us a new saying that we'll be using often in the future. "Oh my cow!" she said when Mrs. P showed her some of the shots she got.
     We stopping at any and every place we thought would look good for portraits, we would jump out of the car, help Grace find something to wear out of the suitcases in the trunk and shoot for as long as we wanted. The red rocks were absolutely incredible. I have never seen anything like it before. I'm not even kidding, I think Grace said, "I'm so happy!" about 1000 times over those two days. Sometimes would just all look at each other and start laughing because we couldn't believe what we were surrounded by. God's creation takes my breath away. We kept thanking him for making these scenes for us to enjoy, because when we were standing at the base of those mountains, you feel so small, but in the most humbling way.
      One of our favorite spots was our last stop at River's Edge with Cathedral Rock in the background  We had a pretty cloudy day and we were running out of sunlight but we decided to go anyway. We got some excellent shots of Grace with her feet in the river, which was probably 30 degrees or less. Then Mrs. P put me in there and we couldn't feel our feet for the rest of the night! But it was so worth it.
After we lost sunlight, we searched for a place to eat and we chose, Red Planet Diner that was outer space themed. The food was great. The service, not so much. BUT! We "Just went with it!" We found our hotel at around 8:30 or so, uploaded photo's, washed the red dirt off of our feet and completely crashed. We couldn't have asked for a better or crazier day.
      Day two started a little slower so we could recuperate after our long first day. We had a free breakfast at the hotel and took off.  We stopped and climbed up some more red rocks and photographed some fun pictures in our dresses, even though we were freezing! Our last stop was downtown Sedona where we took more urban looking photo's. We reluctantly got on the road and headed to Phoenix to catch out flight. Little did we know, our flight filled up and we wouldn't actually catch it because we were on stand by. So we got comfortable in the airport, editing pictures, eating delicious sandwiches and making friends. We eventually got a flight and got back to San Antonio at around 12:30am. 
     It was a whirlwind of a trip but so SO worth every second.  If you even get a chance to go to Arizona, you have to check out Sedona, it had so much beautiful scenery and lots of fun things to do in town. Hope you enjoyed my recap of our trip, hope I didn't bore you too much! Here are a few photos I took while I was there...







Mish-Mash & Various Ramblings by Grace Barbettini

     Ready for a lovely blog post full of random ramblings? Well, even if you aren't, better try and prepare. Why, you say? Because that is exactly what this post is going to be about. Ramblings. Unimportant nonsensical facts. Mish-Mash.
   
     Today, I am sunburned from helping out at the FEAST Middle School track meet. I thought to myself, "Hey, it's not that hot out, and there are tons of clouds! Who needs sunscreen?" Welp. I did. And now guess who looks like a tomato. Oh well... next time, I won't let those clouds fool me. Want to know something interesting? Apparently the history of the invention of sunblock is controversial. There are believed to be four inventors who may have invented it. Who knew? The names of the alleged inventors are Franz Greiter, Benjamin Green, HA Milton Blake, and Eugene Schueller.  The dates vary from early to late 1930's, and beginning 1940's. However, Coppertone developed the first UVA/UVB sunscreen in 1980. Whoaz.

    Changing subject a bit, here. Where would you go if you could go ANYPLACE in the whole entire world? But don't say the world...that doesn't quite count. I think it would be pretty cool to go to Egypt and see the pyramids, among other magnificent sights that it holds. I mean, it's basically the oldest civilization in the entire world. I can't imagine walking around in such ancient cities, knowing how many millions of people have walked those same streets, how many stories have been unfolded, lived out, and how many iconic figures have owned homes so long ago in that same area that you may be standing. Things like that, I can't even start to comprehend. It is simply mind boggling. But a good kind of boggling. Like if you think about time really hard, and the idea of immortality. It's hard to fathom. That's how I feel when I start to think about all of the people before me who may have stood where I stood. It's another thing altogether if I know that they stood there. So cool. Anyways, that's my little schpeeel about one of the places I personally think would be awesome to see.
  
     Hmm...this post looks like it needs some cats in it. Cats are always a good choice. As I'm sitting here writing this bit of pointlessness, my kitty-cat Friskie is on the bed next to me, giving herself a nice little cleaning. What a life, right? It must be great to just sleep and eat and sleep and eat...and wake up your owner in the middle of the night to come open the window. Man, I can't imagine having TONS of cats though. I mean, I guess it wouldn't be thaaaat bad. It may be kind of fun! But what if you ended up growing up and becoming the "cat lady"? I wonder if they have a phobia for that. It's probably called "catalliadofia" or something of the sort. As much as I've always wanted to have a dog, cats are great. They're pretty low maintenance, actually. And they're fluffy. Who doesn't want a walking fluffball? Seriously, people. Too cute.

      I was in our kitchen the other day and BAM! All of a sudden there are tons of gnats. Bleck. Like, where do they even come from? Are they just outside of our house, waiting until we buy fruit? They're probably just buzzin' through life and all of a sudden...they get a giant whiff of banana. I can see them turning into drones; "Must get inside. Must get banana. Must...Must...EAT." I feel like they just appear in mid-air. I just don't understand how they get where they are. Maybe they're secretly aliens. Yup. I like that theory better. Maybe I won't be as grossed out if I think of them that way? You know, foreigners or something. Always makes it more interesting.

     This is getting long...which is what I need it to be, but it's pretty absurd. In the words of Dr. Seuss though, I can defend myself;
"I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, It's a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope. Which is what I do, And that enables you to laugh at life's realities."


     Well, to end this ridiculous post that I hope was at least a tad bit entertaining, I'm going to say three words: Peanut. Butter. Fluff. The combination of these two things is simply wondrous. If you haven't tried that on a sandwich, you are simply missing out on life. Please do yourself a favor and drive like a crazy person to your local grocery store and acquire these two simple yet incredible items and make the best tasting sandwich that you will ever put into your mouth.


Happy Almost Sunday!


Friday, April 12, 2013

Vintage! Retro! Old Stuff! by Robyn Scott


People! I have recently discovered a treasure in San Antonio. The name of it is Montage Vintage. It is perhaps the best Vintage clothing store I have ever come across. They have it all, from 60’s Go-Go Boots, to cut-off 80’s rock t-shirts. Seriously, I’m in love. 

Here’s the link to the website!

Traveling Tips For Money Savers by Robyn Scott

Love traveling, but don't think you have the funds? Well, you could be over estimating the costs! Here's an article about a man who has been constantly traveling for 11 years, and he's no millionaire!


Gather Around, All You Young Folk by Robyn Scott



So do you remember Kony 2012? That video that came out almost a year ago? A lot of people have forgotten about it. The video was released in order to start the movement and to advocate the capture of African war lord, Joseph Kony. Joseph Kony is the head leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), and is responsible for the abduction and murder of thousands of people. Most (especially those who dislike the organization promoting the capture and arrest of Joseph Kony, Invisible Children) think that the huge movement of justice and peace was a just a fad, and to be fair, many who supported it saw it as that. However that is not what the founders, and current supporters of IC want. 

The media with Invisible Children and Kony 2012 has burned out quite a bit. The videos that IC has released since Kony 2012 haven’t gotten near the attention. But that doesn’t mean that their fight is over. A lot of people think that since it’s 2013, that the Kony movement was a failure, and we’re just suppose to give it up now. That is hardly the case. 

Since the release of that video last May, the LRA has had two of their five main commanders captured. In addition, LRA killings have decreased 67%. That’s crazy! Invisible Children isn’t stopping here though. 

They are heading up a new project in relation to the takedown of Joseph Kony, and it’s called The Fourth Estate. The Four Estate is a Summit Leadership conference happening this August. This camp isn’t just for IC and their supporters though, and it’s not exclusively to stop Kony. It’s for everyone who has a passion for humanity and justice. 

They’ll be bringing speakers in from some of the most influential organizations out their, such as To Write Love On Her Arms, Do Something, Charity: Water, and so many others. Their goal is to inspire and teach the young minds of America, and encourage them to make a difference. By bringing new ideas to the table in order to advocate peace and justice throughout the world, we’re just getting that much closer to helping thousands if not millions of suffering families. If you’re passionate about bringing healing to the thousands of people struggling with self injury, they’ll have someone at the conference to talk to. If you want to bring awareness of the affects of bullying, homelessness, human rights, and others, there’s someone at the conference to talk to. And if you want to see clean water brought to every country in the world before you die, there are people at that conference who are waiting to talk to you.

There are a lot of great things that the young people (and old people, for that matter) of America can set their minds to. I believe that with the right knowledge, inspiration, and encouragement, we can do something amazing for our future. So gather around, all you young folk, we're going to change the world. 



If you’re interested in The Fourth Estate, or just wanting to know what happened to Kony 2012, here are a couple of videos to help with things. 







Thursday, April 11, 2013

Tips, Tricks, and Niftiness by Grace Barbettini

Here's a few miscellaneous nifty tips that you may find enthralling. Or possibly, you might think they're strange.

Enjoy! 

Hole-Punched Gift Card Holder:




Use Chalk to Remove Grease Stains:




Chip Bag Fold:




Stain Remover:






How To Pick the Ripest Avocados:


(via: www.recipebyphoto.com)



Necklace Chain Length Chart:



 DIY - Ice Pack:




Picking Up Broken Glass Shards:

Pancake Pops by Emily Cote

Pancakes. On. A. Stick.
Seriously? Come on, who wouldn't want to eat these!? They're adorable! Check out the link below for the recipe. 



Wednesday, April 10, 2013

How to Make an Origami Crane by Mikayla Halsell


Haven't you always wanted to make an origami crane? I definitely have! But I could never figure out how to do it because the instructions were too difficult. Well, click on the link below to get some really simple step-by-step instructions that will show you how to make your own origami crane!

Have fun decorating your room! 

Or just showing off..








Top 15 Things To Do in Class When You're Bored by Mikayla Halsell

       We all know that school is important (and mandatory) and we should listen in class to our teachers (even if they're lecturing for a long time) because regardless of what Hollywood might tell you, you can only be successful if you have a very good education (unless you end up actually going to Hollywood) and continue on to college (despite the fact that most college graduates are having a very difficult time getting jobs).
       But even so, sometimes class can be boring and you zone out and end up staring at a wall. Well, instead of wasting your time, why not actually do something productive? Here are 10 things that you can do to help pass the time in class that are more interesting than watching the minute hand tick ever-so-slowly away.

*Disclaimer* I really do think that you should pay attention in class and not zone out and do random stuff.

1. Draw in your notebook

2. Daydream

3. Make a list of your top 10 favorite things (bands, movies, songs, etc.)

4. Write down you favorite quotes

5. Stare at someone near to you until they notice and look away. You'd be surprised at how entertaining this can be

6. For the last 20 minutes of class, think of a song every minute and play it in your head for that minute. When that minute is over, pick another song and so on.

7. Create your own pick-up lines and test them out later

8. Think of nicknames for everyone in the class

9. Write lyrics of a song on your notebook paper

10. Make a sundial

11. Give yourself a new identity

12. Pick an action that someone does often (tucking hair behind their ear, sniffing, scratching their head, say something stupid, etc.) and put a tally mark on your paper every time they do it

13. Yawn a couple times and see how many people yawn too

14. Play MASH in your notebook with yourself

15. Fold origami



But in all honesty, you should pay attention in class. Take notes, pass your tests, and graduate high school.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Trust Fall by Grace Barbettini



Yup. We all have some of those days. Those days where you just feel... off. Where you can't quite get everything done, you don't feel like you have much control of anything, and your head seems to be spinning in a million directions. Recently, I've been struggling with giving everything up to God, because I don't feel like anything happens when I do. But every time I say "okay God, this one's yours." I feel so much more relieved. Now, obviously it's much easier said than done, and like I mentioned previously, I've definitely been struggling with it. And now you're probably wondering, "hey, that's cool and all..but I still don't understand why I'm staring at a photo of a whale." Well, that's because it reminded me of how we need to trust in God in everything that we do, just like how you trust your friend during those highly frightening "trust falls" that you play as a kid.That, and the illustration made me laugh really hard.

So next time you're stressing out about something, take a moment and pause. Ask for God to help you, and then take a deep breath and give it all up to the big guy. Whenever I mentally hand over a tough situation, and tell Him it's in His hands, I don't feel like I need to worry anymore, because He's in control now. He wants us so badly to give all of our problems to Him, yet for some reason we hold on so tightly to them despite how little it actually helps us.

One verse that never fails to help me is 1 Peter 5:7 - "Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you."

So, go ahead.

Trust.

Fall.

The Slippery Slope of Dietary Equality by Caleb Warren


The United States of America is a melting pot country. We’ve always been a nation made up of a myriad of different racial and social groups. There has been dark periods in our history, to be sure, but in recent years the country has become more generally inclusive of all types of alternative lifestyles, but at what cost? Shouldn’t we, as Americans, be protecting the moral code upon which our country was built? Is there a point at which our good-intentioned commitment to equality and open-mindedness actually leads down a road that will make us as bankrupt morally as we are financially?
Vampires, y’all. They walk among us, and sure, I’m all for people having the right to do whatever they want to do, but sucking the blood of good, hard-working Americans is where I draw the line. It’s typical these days to turn on the television and see any number of celebrities preaching at us about “embracing” this oppressed group of monsters, but I can’t help but wonder where we go after we give the vampires equal rights. What’s next for this country?
All killers may not be vampires, but I remain convinced that all vampires are killers. They survive on the sustenance of our blood, hello. How do you think they get it? They live a corrupt, unnatural lifestyle and they hurt other people to do it. If they would just live normally like the rest of us, we wouldn’t have a problem. Be whatever you want to be in your own house, but if you really want to be accepted by society, maybe you should just act like the rest of us. Stop being a vampire, and we can all be happy.
It’s not that I’m a bigoted person, it’s just that being vampiric goes against all the laws of nature and man. Why would you want to be that way? Just eat normal food. Now sure, we all hear stories from lamestream media about how some vampires are good people who get their blood from hospitals, and not by killing people, but do any of us actually buy that nonsense? I hope not. These people need to be driven out. It’s unnatural, is all I’m saying. Just look at the story of the Creation, God gave Adam life, not death. Death came as a result of the Fall, but now we’re supposed to welcome these dead people with open arms simply because they have a condition that keeps them preserved and sentient? No thank you, I’m an American. If you want to be included in spite of your demonic life choices, maybe try Canada.
If we grant rights to vampires, even just to the ones who don’t hurt other people (as if those exist), we run the risk of sending the wrong message. What are we saying to the other, arguably worse types of demons out there? That’s it’s okay if you’re a werewolf? That no matter how zombified you are, it’s cool as long as you’re a nice person? I’m not okay with this lapse in judgment, and neither should you be. This is important. Stop this wretched “dietary equality” business. (If you ask me, we already too equal with people’s chosen diets, letting vegetarians eat out in the open and whatnot, but that’s for another time.)
Vampires, you will never be welcome in this country as long as you keep insisting on having a digestive system that only responds to blood. (Honestly, only blood, really? Who’s closed-minded now?) Keep your alternative tendencies to yourself, and stop asking the rest of the world to be okay with the way you eat. I’m not a bigot, but you should really just leave or go somewhere else where they’re okay with degrading social values.

The Cutest Of The Cute by Robyn Scott

Let's all just take a moment to appreciate how absolutely adorable Jennifer Lawrence is.




Diane and Amy: A Mother-Daughter One-Sided Love Story For The Ages by Robyn Scott

Diane, an overly admiring mother, writes about her seemingly perfect daughter, Amy. 


Amy Had A Great Spring Break! 


Diane here! Hope everyone had a great Spring Break a few weeks ago -I know I did! My Spring Break consisted mostly of me driving Amy around. But like, I totally didn’t mind because she’s perfect and I love her. So instead of telling all my readers more about that minor earthquake last Thursday, I will describe Amy’s Spring Break. 

Monday: Amy didn’t wake up until around 12:00pm, which I really supported, because she works really hard in everything she does, and totally deserves to sleep in. After she ate her gluten-free-everything breakfast (because she’s super sensitive to all that) I suggested that we go get mani-pedis together, like a fun mother-daughter outing. She then informed me that she already had a full day planned with her BFFs, and I completely understood, because I was young once too, and it’s important to have strong friendships. Amy’s wise beyond her years.

Tuesday: Amy-Pie woke up at around 8:00am, and I felt really proud to be the mother of a daughter who was so good with time management. Tuesday, she had informed by prior, was her workout day with Jeff, her boyfriend, who Phil and I just adore. A real upstanding fellow that Jeff.  They met at the park for a run, core exercise, swimming, yoga, zumba, then pilates. She’s so healthy with her lifestyle. (Except like, afterwords all she could do was talk about how awesome she was for working out, and I’m all thanks for making me feel like I never do anything for my well being). 

Wednesday: She let me hang out with her, FINALLY! Talk about exciting, Phil and I had the whole day planned out. First we’d go to the zoo, followed by a bike ride in the country, then a walk in the park, and lastly we’d go for ice-cream. However Amy wasn’t too keen on the plan, and suggested that we just take her shopping instead. To be honest, Phil and mine’s feelings were a little hurt, but when we thought about it, we concluded that Amy putting her own interests first just meant that she’ll be really successful in business and could possibly get a career in politics. And we totally wanted to support that.

Thursday: Amy went hiking with a group of her friends, and Jeff. They got like, REALLY into it all. They took pictures of them scaling down the side of a mountain! Her father and I were just like, WOAH. And the great thing about Amy, is pretty much all of her friends worship her very existence. So like, there were PLENTY of pictures of her, and as a mother it’s really important to make sure she can capture those memories. She’s so amazing.

Friday: Amy woke up in a terrific mood, lucky for us! She spent most of the day watching TV her father and me. She was like, SO sweet and paid us some really genuine compliments throughout the whole day. That evening she told us that she was planning on going to a club downtown with some girlfriends. Phil and I were pretty uneasy about the situation, and we told her she couldn’t go. She then informed us that we we’re being terribly unfair, and that we had no clue what we were saying (which truly, she had a point, because Phil and I rarely know what we mean when we say words). After she told us all this, we decided to let her go. The fact that she was speaking her mind definitely earned her some trust-points. I assume she had a great time out that night, but I don’t know for sure, because she barely mentioned it again.

Saturday: Most of Saturday was full of homework. Amy is a straight A student, and we’re like totally proud of her for that, and she’s probably smarter than both Phil and I. I just wish I could be her for like, a day. That night was just a regular ol’ Amy casual kind of night - she went to a rock concert, but that’s just her life, so no biggie. 

Sunday: Sunday we went to church with the Mayor and her family, they are such hoots! Everyone always comments about the Mayor and Amy’s uncanny resemblance, which I take as a good omen. After that Jeff came over and the two of them did homework while Phil and I caught up on some Downton Abbey.

We were all sad to see the week over, but all good things must come to an end - Amy being the exception, because there’s always something new with her. Overall, it was a successful Spring Break, and I think everyone knows who we have to thank for that.

Useful Study Guide For Test Taking by Robyn Scott

The Ever-So-Dreaded Finals are just around the corner. Studying is hard enough during the school year, what with sports to play, Facebooks to check, Twitters to update, books to read, books to write, haircuts to get, shows to catch up on, songs to be sung, pictures to be painted, and literally anything else we can think of. However the stress is on when finals come around, because there isn't much of a choice but to study.

Here are some helpful study-tips. It's a little soon (seeing as how we have a few weeks), but the sooner the better!


This illustration was provided by Pinterest.


Worst 90's Pictures of Celebs by Mikayla Halsell

       The 90's was the decade of my childhood and one of my favorites as well. But unfortunately the 90's wasn't all that grand for these celebrities. Though I love a lot of them *cough* Justin Timberlake *cough*, these pictures are simply horrific and should, in all honestly, stay in the 90's. Thankfully for these celebs though, most have outgrown their outrageous styles.

*the pictures are in no particular order*

1. Brad Pitt. That blank stare is mesmerizing..


2. Celine Dion on her way home from a long day's work at Target. 


3. Daniel Craig and his best Braveheart impression


4. George Clooney and his denim obsessions.. 


5. Gwen Stephanie gettin' her ghetto on.



6. Jessica Simpson in an insane asylum



7. Joesph Gordon-Levitt rocking those braided pig-tails and striped shirt made from a couch. 


8.  Keanu Reeves. I just don't even know.. 


9. Natalie Portman gettin' cray with those pig-tails and pajama-looking outfit


10. Neil Patrick Harris just won first place in a mullet competition. 


11. N'SYNC looking FAB-U-LOUS in those rad shirts.


12. Robert Downey Jr. trending in the 23th Century. 


13. Whoop Goldberg in her costume for Wizard of Oz.


14. Will Smith buzzin' like a bee. 


And now...the crown jewel of them all.........



15. Justin Timberlake being amazing.