My Insatiable Itch to Do Something Remarkable

my-insatiable-itch-to-do-something-remarkable-susan-g-komen-3-day-walk-to-fight-breast-cancer

Do you ever have an itch that can only be satisfied by doing something remarkable? I always wonder if I’m the only one. I go through periods of time where I get wild hairs and think, “what have I done with my life and what am I going to do”?  It’s times like these that I do silly things like pierce my tragus or go on a trip abroad, but there is something so much more rewarding about challenging yourself and doing so for a good cause.

A few years back, I heard about the Susan G. Komen 3-Day Walk. The SGK 3-Day is a 3 day, 60 mile walk that’s making a real difference in the fight against breast cancer. I read it over and although I knew it was something I wanted to do, I couldn’t help but think “I can’t raise that kind of money” and “I can’t walk 60 miles in 3 days”. Since then, this event has remained in the back of my mind and has really been pressing on my heart, so I’ve decided, that I can do anything that I put my mind to.

susan-g-komen-3-day-walk-for-breast-cancer

That’s why I have decided to embark on a life-changing journey, not only for me, but most importantly, for those that are affected by breast cancer. If you sit back and think about it, we all know so many people who are plagued by cancer and the only way it’s going to come to a stop, is if we do something about it.

susan-g-komen-3-day-breast-cancer-walk-san-diego

So, for the next 27 weeks, I will be training, pushing myself mentally and physically, and raising every dollar I can to support the fight against breast cancer. Every dollar counts and I would be FOREVER grateful for your help! Want to join me on this journey? Just click below! 🙂

susan-g-komen-3-day-walk-fight-against-breast-cancer-donation

Over the next few months, I’ll be sure to keep you all in the loop on my progress – giving you updates through the training, blisters and dollars raised up until my walk on November 17th – 19th in San Diego, California. I can’t wait to get started!

If you are interested in walking with me, be sure to check it out!

C’est la vie,

Anna

Advertisements

5 Fall Shows You Don’t Want to Miss Out On

5-fall-shows-you-dont-want-to-miss-out-on

New TV shows are just another great thing about fall. We’re all so busy vacationing, working and being outside during the summer that TV networks really don’t bother putting out great TV until the leaves begin to change and everybody is back into the swing of normal life. I, myself, am SO glad to have entertaining, gut-wrenching, thrilling shows back in my life. Seriously, I don’t know how I functioned blogging along without Grey’s Anatomy playing in the background. I mean… how did I get by without knowing How to Get Away with Murder? And even though I thought they couldn’t do it, they did…even more great new shows have premiered this season. Here’s 5 you don’t want to miss out on.

Notorious 

5-fall-shows-you-dont-want-to-miss-notorious.jpg

Are you a lover of Coyote Ugly? I am… and not that this show and that movie have anything in common as far as plot line goes, but they do both feature Piper Perabo whom I adore! Honestly, seeing her in the trailer was what got me to watch the show in the first place. Well, that and the fact that it falls into the same time slot as one of my favorites, Scandal, usually does. Kerry Washington, I’m so happy for you and your baby, but I’m heartbroken that Shondaland’s TGIT exists no more. Nonetheless, this show is totally different than you would expect and completely thrilling. I have to say, it holds it’s own between Grey’s & HTGAWM.

Designated Survivor

5-fall-shows-you-dont-want-to-miss-designated-survivor.jpg

This is another famous face I was excited to see. Most of y’all have probably never watched the show 24, but when I was little my dad LOVED it and I loved watching it with him, so when I saw Kiefer Sutherland back on the small screen, I had to tune in. It’s crazy, because it kind of makes you nervous that something so detrimental could really happen to our country and what would we do if put in that situation? All I have to say is… Kiefer Sutherland for president, am I right? haha

Ben & Lauren: Happily Ever After?

5-fall-shows-you-dont-want-to-miss-ben-and-lauren

So B&LHEA can be a little cheesy at times, but I love it because it’s legit. You know, we all watch the Bachelor and Bachelorette and swoon over these beautiful people falling in love for a happy ever after… but I always wonder if I ended up with the Bachelor, how I would feel after the show. I would absolutely hate watching him with all of the other women and forever being tied to it. So when I saw that all of these couples were just fine, I always wondered how and why. Ben and Lauren don’t sugar coat it though. Jo Jo was an issue for them and they have had to deal with it. Being on the show and having the pressures of Bachelor Nation have affected them and they lay it all out for us in their show.

This is Us

5-fall-shows-you-dont-want-to-miss-this-is-us.jpeg

So, I haven’t watched this one yet, but it makes the list because I’m sad I haven’t. I’ve literally almost been brought to tears just seeing the trailers. The New York Times calls it “skillful, shameless tear-jerking” about “ordinary people with ordinary problems”.  Plus, Mandy Moore is a central character… I’m already in love. Needless to say, you need to watch it and so do I, so I’ll be making time to watch it on Tuesday nights as I do God-awful burpees in the living room.

Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life

5-fall-shows-you-dont-want-to-miss-gilmore-girls

The original Gilmore Girls was life and considering that Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life will have most of the original characters and is written by Amy Sherman-Palladino like the first few seasons, not the last one that ended on a lackluster note, I know this series will be great! You can believe that after shopping, my Black Friday will be spent watching this gem. There’s going to be 4 amazing 90-minute episodes and you don’t want to miss them!

So, this post definitely makes me sound like all I do is sit on the couch eating potato chips and watching TV, but it’s not the truth. I spend a ton of time working, working late, working out, working on my blog (see a trend here? 🙂 ), but I have a ton of respect for good TV and I do enjoy it. So, if you love TV as much as I do, indulge yourself with these 5 shows and let me know what you think!

C’est la vie,

Anna

For the American Who is Feeling Indifferent About Voting

for-the-american-who-is-feeling-indifferent-about-voting.png

With the election just 10 days away, I think lots of American citizens are feeling stressed, apathetic or unhappy about it. We’ve been put in a position with two candidates are who are both kinda crooked and watching them debate is more so comical than beneficial to us at all better understanding their stance on the issues. It’s weird, because growing up, during elections, I looked at these candidates as these incredibly smart superheroes that we got to choose from to lead our country and better our government. The older I get though, the more I realize just how shady most politicians are. It doesn’t matter which party they affiliate with (republican, democrat, libertarian, etc.) or what good things they say, most likely, they’ve done some dirty things.

So with all of this negativity around the election and Clinton and Trump, it’s really easy to become indifferent about the outcome and to find voting to be more of a burden than a privilege. I, myself, have been feeling extremely stressed trying to figure out who to vote for, but I have to remind myself why it’s so important that I do make a decision and take the time to vote. If you’re in the same boat as me, remind yourself of these things.

Voting is a privilege

for-the-american-voting-is-a-privilege.jpg

Do you realize that there are quite a few countries where citizens don’t have a say in who leads their country? Places where residents cannot voice their opinion on issues that directly affect them in their community? The beauty of democracy and of our country is that our voice is heard and we are allowed to say just about whatever we want. Other people wish they could have the freedom and ability to vote like we do, so we need to take advantage of that and not waste it.

Voting is a hard earned right

for-the-americanvoting-is-a-hard-earned-right

A large portion of the United States didn’t always have the right to vote. Our ancestors before us had to work hard and endure rejection, jail time and even abuse so we could have that right. If you think about it, although slavery ended for African Americans 5 or so years prior, they did not receive the right to vote until 1870 and even then for many years, the right was severely limited. For women, we didn’t receive the right until 1920. How crazy is that? Our Great Grandparents were alive during that time. I’m a sucker for women’s suffrage type movies, but if you’ve never watched Iron Jawed Angels you need to. It’s a really good film and it will remind you just how thankful you should be for those before us and what they did to make our lives better.

Voting is your voice

for-the-american-voting-is-your-voice

No, you can’t call up the President and tell him you’re unhappy about something, but you can let your representatives know what you’re happy with, unhappy with, legislation you want to see passed, etc. through elections. It also allows you to pick who you want to run our country (to an extent) :). If you don’t take the time to go and tell them what you want, you can’t be the one to bitch on social media about how it turns out. I swear people too generously put their opinions on social media, but often don’t take the time to try to incite real action.

I know this election sucks… and it’s stressful, but one way or another, we’ve got to make a decision and we’ve got to take the time to vote. I’m putting this out there, so that I’m accountable too and to make myself go take advantage of this privilege that has been afforded to me.

I’ll make this easy on you… not sure if you’re registered? You can check here.

Not sure who to vote for? You can find some help figuring out which issues are important to you and who stands for them here.

I challenge you to do our country a favor and make time to go to the polls, let me know if you do! 🙂

C’est la vie,

Anna

 

Why Bachelor in Paradise is More Legit Than The Bachelor

Why Bachelor in Paradise.png

We all love The Bachelor/Bachelorette, right? I literally don’t even consider it a guilty pleasure, I don’t feel guilty at all! 🙂 What’s better than watching 25 of the most gorgeous (and some of the most crazy) people all vying for one person? Probably since my freshman year of college when my bff introduced me, I have spent most Monday nights glued to the TV for 2 hours at a time. I’ve been there for the good (when Sean and Catherine fell so in love and now have the cutest baby on planet earth), the bad (when Nick outed Andi on national TV for having sex with him shortly before getting engaged to Josh) and the ugly (umm… Chad?).

So when Bachelor in Paradise came around I was not excited. I had given Bachelor Pad a couple of chances and was extremely disappointed. It seemed so trashy like For the Love of Ray Jay or Bad Girls Club, so I didn’t expect any less from Bachelor in Paradise. HOWEVER, BIP is a whole different story.

What I’ve come to realize is that actually Bachelor in Paradise is way more legit than The Bachelor/Bachelorette and here’s why…

  • They don’t try to act like this is a serious, completely unstaged show. Have you seen the trailer? They literally make fun of themselves from the start and with all of the cheese and obvious staging upfront, there’s nothing to hide.

bip

  • People are actually trying to find connections, well some of them, and it’s a lot more practical because there’s lots of options. Haven’t you ever thought it’s a little weird how 25 people can all like the same person and 7-10 of them all “love” the same person? People hardly ever choose to leave The Bachelor/Bachelorette and I highly doubt that they’re all compatible with the suitor.

bip2.jpg

  • Your odds are better that your partner isn’t practicing polygamy. While plenty of people date a couple of different partners while on Bachelor in Paradise, they’re often not dating two people at once and sometimes they only date one person. Watching a show back and seeing your fiancé date/kiss/do other things(?) with 25 other people is an awful way to start off a relationship. Odds are with Bachelor in Paradise you know what they’ve been up to, there’s less surprises and they may have only slept with you.

bip3.jpg

  • BIP has a better track record. There have been 20 seasons of The Bachelor and 12 seasons of The Bachelorette and 6 couples are married. I’m not knocking the show, like I said before, I LOVE it, but the odds really aren’t that good. However, BIP is currently on season 3 and both of the past 2 seasons have ended in a marriage, they’re 2 for 2. That’s pretty good.

bip4.png

Obviously, I’m going to keep watching both shows, but who knew BIP would be so legit?

C’est la vie,

Anna

Top 10 Craziest Moments of the 2016 Olympics

Copy of How to Live on Less Money (1).png

If you’re an average U.S. Citizen like me, chances are the past 10 days have been pure bliss; spent eating countless calories on the couch, while reveling in the glory of our powerhouse United States teams. We cheer at how athletic “we” are and how “we” dominate almost every sport, all while eating a hot pocket and propping our feet up. But really… the 2016 Olympics have not disappointed and I think it’s safe to say, we’ll all be a little sad to see them go in just 6 days. So, here’s your Olympic recap of the top 10 craziest moments in Rio so far.

Side note: A lot of these are about the U.S…. I might be a little biased.

1. Michael Phelps.

olympics

Ok, so he’s obviously not a “moment”, but he has given us SO many crazy moments in this year’s games that he gets his own section. First of all, thank you for being you Michael. You have given us so much to be excited about over the last 16 years. ICYMI (which I’m sure you didn’t), MP finished his last race and ended his record-breaking career with 23 gold medals. He did us proud… and truthfully although we’re all saying we’re happy for him, we secretly hope he’ll show up again in 2020 to rack up a few more medals. I know he’s ready to move on with life, but he’s become our real-life super hero and we sort of think he’s immortal. Not to mention, MP provided us with lots of laughs.. This year, Michael gave the death stare seen round the world. Chad Le Clos thought he was all big and bad, but this stare should have forewarned him that a major butt-kicking was about to ensue. Even better! His stare became a meme… it doesn’t get much better than that!

2. Simone Biles has 2 firsts!

olympics2.jpg

Simone Biles may be small, but man, is she fierce! In case you haven’t seen her rock insanely difficult tumbling passes or the mad vertical she gets on the vault, this girl is a force to be reckoned with. As of last night, she is the first U.S. woman to win a gold medal on the vault and the first gymnast to win three Olympic golds in a single Olympics. Not to mention, she still has two events left. Cue me grabbing the popcorn and staying glued to my couch through tomorrow.

3. Simone Manuel becomes the 1st African-American to win a gold in swimming!

Although I didn’t realize at the time that she was the 1st African-American woman to win a gold in swimming, I couldn’t have been more excited watching Simone win her race. All you heard from the commentators was how the two Australian sisters were going to take the cake, no mention of Simone at all (which is a problem in itself), but out of nowhere she races to the finish and has the most priceless reaction. My husband and I literally freaked out, we were so excited. Then on top of it all to hear in her interview that she was the 1st African-American woman to win a gold was groundbreaking. I can’t imagine how many feelings and emotions she was feeling in that very moment and it made watching her in the relay even more exciting!

4. Commentators mentions of Katinka Hosszu’s husband spark sexism debate.

So I have to admit, I’m glad that people are talking about sexism, especially on such a large platform. Katinka Hosszu is an incredible Hungarian swimmer and last week she won an Olympic gold and broke the world record in the 400m individual medley. Sounds great, right? Well, immediately after her win, commentators shift to her husband on screen making remarks such as “There’s the guy responsible for turning Katinka Hosszu, his wife, into a whole different swimmer.” Screeeech.. hold up! Say what? In Katinka’s moment of glory, when all of her hard work has paid off, you shift to her husband and give him the credit? My husband and I have gone back and forth on this point, him pointing out that the athletes’ coaches are often shown on screen after a big win and given some sort of credit, but me also noting that they literally say he is “responsible” and barely give her any credit. I don’t see anyone saying Michael Phelps’ coach is “responsible” for making him the swimmer that he is… am I right? Plus, there’s lots of reports that Hosszu’s husband is somewhat abusive, so let’s add that to the mix. Whether you agree or not, at least it’s being talked about, which is a step in the right direction!

5. Ryan Lochte gets robbed at gun point.

olympics5

credit: cnn.com

Rio has had a tough time during the games. With reports of the Zika virus, contaminated water, filthy air, Olympic facilities incomplete, etc. Brazilians are probably fed up with all of the bad press the Games has brought with it, but it won’t be ending any time soon. According to Forbes, “Brazil is the murder capital of the world” and Numbeo notes that Brazil’s crime rate is “very high” with a score of “90.44 out of 100”. Ryan Locthe experienced this first hand as he was dragged out of a taxi and robbed at gun point. I think we all felt a little scared for Ryan, but at the same time, it was interesting to hear he was out partying with snowboarder, Shaun White, and that he was too drunk to coherently explain what happened at first. Maybe you should be careful how much you celebrate Ryan… 🙂

6. Ibtihaj Muhammad makes waves as first U.S. Olympian to compete wearing a hijab.

olympics6.jpg

So, Ibtihaj is pretty freakin’ cool. If you aren’t inspired listening to her story, I don’t know what to tell you. Knowing that finding a sport where she could also practice her religion through her dress was really difficult, knowing that people looked at her differently and knowing that she has been targeted for being “suspicious” even though she seems like the coolest girl on the planet is pretty crazy. She has truly defied all odds and reminded Americans just how normal (and definitely not scary) Muslims can be. Despite all of the negativity she faces from her fellow Americans, she wore our colors proudly and we should all be really proud of her!

7. Sam Dorman and Michael Hixon score USA’s best ever 3m Synchronized Dive.

So I have to admit that synchronized diving is a sport that I pretty much only pay attention to… say, uhh… every 4 years? 🙂 Nonetheless, it’s really neat and something that the good ole US of  A hasn’t always been the best at. So, it was really awesome seeing another U.S. Olympic first as Sam Dorman and Michael Hixon scored our best ever score in the 3m Synchronized Dive gaining another silver medal for the U.S.!

8. Brazil takes credit for being 1st in flight during the Opening Ceremony.

The commentators tried to warn us that we might be offended, but nothing prepared us for the claim that Brazil was going to make during the opening ceremony. Low and behold though, out came an airplane and so too came the claim that they were the first men in flight. The Twitter world caught on fire with memes of confused faces and others in defense of the Wright Brothers. We were totally the first ones in manned flight though…right?

9. Olympics welcomes back golf after 112 years.

How crazy is that? The Olympic Games have not included golf since the 1904 games in St. Louis. I, myself, don’t find it that entertaining, but it is pretty cool for the golfers to get to be the first to play in the Olympics in over a decade. Plus, my husband has loved watching it, so I know there must be plenty of other interested parties out there. I think my favorite part is watching the non-golf watchers out at the course. Did anyone else see when the lady in the purple dress picked up the ball?! I’m still laughing about it…

10. An Olympic proposal.

Diving - Women's 3m Springboard Victory Ceremony

credit: samaa.tv

Well guys the rest of you can just quit trying because not much can measure up to a proposal on the Olympic podium! In one of the most amazing moments of her life, diver He Zi wins the silver medal in the 3m springboard event. Then to put the cherry on top, her boyfriend of over 6 years proposes to her on the podium. I can’t imagine what a high she was on!

That’s your top 10 Olympic moments for now, who knows what else is to come?!

I can’t get enough y’all!

C’est la vie,

Anna

 

Hot Trends this Summer

Copy of How to Live on Less Money.png

I think one thing we can all agree on is that it is HOT, HOT, HOTTTT this summer. No fear though, I’m here to keep you up-to-date on this season’s coolest trends. With the last of our summer days dwindling down by the second, make sure to jump on these trends before it’s too late.

Circle/Pretty Beach Towels

If you’ve been on Instagram lately or any social media platform for that matter, then you’ve probably seen some pretty sweet beach towels. The $10 beach towel you get from Target is no longer the way to go. Beach towels come in all sorts of patterns, sizes and shapes these days and despite the fact that most of these beauties cost $50+ a piece, they’re amazing! Towels in a circle shape? Yes! Why these are any more comfortable or purposeful, I’m really not sure, but they look cool in an Insta pic, right? Not to mention, have you heard of Sand Cloud Towels? For one, they’re so cute and they can double as a towel and a blanket, but also a portion of their profits helps save marine life. Basically, yes, you need one.

https://www.epochcollective.com/

https://www.sandcloudtowels.com/

 

Large Pool Floats in the Shape of Animals or Food

Yet another Insta trend gone viral. Pool days are not complete without some sort of flamingo, swan, unicorn, doughnut or pizza shaped pool float. And the shapes and colors don’t stop there. Plain pool floats are a thing of the past; pool days are meant to be more fun! Oh hey, TSwift… sorry to post a pic of you and Calvin in light of his recent #meantweets. 

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Giant-Rainbow-Inflatable-Unicorn-Pool-Float-Toy-Outdoor-Fun-Water-Swim-Floater/52161026

https://www.amazon.com/International-Leisure-Giant-Swan-inches/dp/B00166ES9G/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1468586194&sr=8-5&keywords=big+pool+float

 

Unique Bathing Suits

Remember when everyone wore simple triangle bikini tops and bottoms? Well, now there are so many more options that are a ton of fun! My current favorite trend is probably the high neck bathing suit tops. They come in lots of styles whether they’re patterned, crocheted or have ties up the middle; they’re so cute!

High-waisted bathing suits bottoms also made an appearance again this summer. Not only are these super cute, but they’re also really comfortable.

Then, who can miss all of the cute one-pieces out this summer?! And not just sexy monokinis, but actual one-piece bathing suits! I remember being a teenager and thinking how God-awful one-pieces were and how I would never wear one again in my life and now I absolutely adore them!

Plus, there are endless possibilities with off the shoulder sleeves, fringy almost tankini looking tops (yeah, I know! When is the last time you heard the phrase tankini?), etc.

http://sophieandtrey.com/criss-cross-strap-bottoms-blush

https://www.victoriassecret.com/swimwear/shop-by-size/flounce-crop-top?ProductID=284655&CatalogueType=OLS

http://www.showmeyourmumu.com/shop/swim/one-piece-swimsuits/topanga-tank-one-piece-swimsuit-crown-cheetah

http://www.revolve.com/swimwear-one-piece/br/06d9e5/?navsrc=left

 

Chrissy Teigen’s Cookbook, Cravings

bikini3

First off, who doesn’t love Chrissy Teigen? She’s quite possibly one of the cutest celebs out there right now. If you follow her at all, you’ll know she’s often sharing recipes she loves and now we have access to them all! So if you haven’t picked up her cookbook yet, you should, because she gives awesome recipes for all the food you want to eat!

Oh, side note, did anyone hear that now Kim K is wanting to put out her own cookbook after seeing how successful Chrissy has been? I love you Kim, but do you even cook for yourself?

https://www.amazon.com/Cravings-Recipes-All-Food-Want/dp/1101903910

 

Pokemon Go

bikini4

I hesitated for a LONG time before adding this one to the list because I don’t think I’m ever going to be a Pokemon lover. I never played it as a child and I don’t intend to start now, BUT that’s doesn’t mean it isn’t one of this season’s hottest trends. For Pokemon lovers out there, they can now bring the game of Pokemon to life via their phone and it seems just about everyone, but me, is doing it. I think more than anything we should be excited about this type of technology and what that means for other virtual experiences and interactivity coming to our phones soon. For those of you who do love Pokemon, play on, we’re excited for you!

http://www.pokemon.com/us/pokemon-video-games/pokemon-go/

 

So there you have it, this summer’s hottest trends. There isn’t much time left, so soak up every bit of sun you can before Fall creeps up on us.

C’est la vie,

Anna

Peace, Love & Unity

plandu

Y’all… I haven’t even begun telling you what this post is about and I’m afraid to do it. Politics and social injustice issues are not fun. They’re controversial, sticky and scary to have an opinion about. If you’re like me, you find yourself nervous to say anything for fear of saying the wrong thing, but at the same time, you know that many people see silence as a form of racism, sexism, hate.

I, myself, never post political stuff on social media. For one, I don’t know everything (shh.. don’t tell my husband I admitted to that!). Unless, I am a politician whose job is to know issues front and back or a political science guru who reads news on current events all day, everyday, I can’t pretend that I understand everything. I try my best to stay abreast of current issues and to research both sides before picking where I stand, but if it’s difficult for me, I assume it’s probably difficult for most average citizens to truly understand the issues and formulate a solid opinion based on their own research and understanding.

Secondly, SO much of what is posted on social media is b.s. Someone posts something hateful or not founded on any statistical data whatsoever and then it gets shared like the plague. Everyone who thinks they know something, believes it and shares it and it’s so annoying/embarrassing for them. *Note: this doesn’t apply to everyone.

Finally, it’s just not the place or time. This isn’t to say that social media hasn’t brought about positive social change or been a place to come together for a cause, but when you get on Facebook and your whole newsfeed is filled with both sides barking back and forth it’s counterproductive. If I see one more “I’m blocking SO many people today” or “If you don’t agree, you’re racist” posts I’ll gag myself. We’re going to quit being friends with people because they have a different opinion than us? We’re going to strongly condone a stance we really don’t even understand why we’re standing for? Enough.

Nonetheless, this is probably the most political you’ll ever see me get in the open world. My friends may disagree as they have stayed up with me until 3 in the morning debating why sexism is still a HUGE issue, but here again, this is an issue I HAVE researched and am willing to DEBATE, not saying that my thoughts are law.

safe_image.php

@TristanToorie

This post comes to fruition because of a photo my friend, Tristan, shared on social media that actually struck a chord with me and made sense. It couldn’t be more true. I have seen God-awful videos of cops being violent that make my stomach churn, but almost every policeman I know is a good person who truly wants to protect and serve us. The few too-jacked-up-on-steriods cops that hate people based on the color of their skin, their sexual orientation or their economic status and use their authority to commit brutality, give the rest a bad name.

Literally, pretty much every African-American person I know is the opposite of a “thug”. I won’t use “they” because that implies that all African-American people are the same, but people with black skin are really beautiful people. I have had friends who were beautiful dancers, roommates that taught me more about the bible than I thought I’d ever know, classmates that whooped my butt when it came to creative advertising plans, etc. Plus, where would we be without African-American culture? Can you really tell me you could live without/hate Beyonce? What about Olivia from Scandal (aka my role model for life) or Jackson Avery from Grey’s (yes, we love you Jesse)?

What about Hispanics? Every person I know of Latino descent is a perfectly wonderful citizen. Again, I have had friends who are the most talented artists, classmates who brought so much to the table, acquaintances who had fashion sense that I’d die to have. People hear “Hispanic” and immediately categorize them as immigrants (often illegal), but pretty much everyone who lives here in the good ole USA is a descendant of an immigrant, so…..

That brings me to Muslim people. Can you think of one Muslim person you personally know who is a terrorist? I can’t. I have never come in contact with someone who is Muslim and felt afraid. The people I know overall are pretty respectful, kind and peaceful. There are some that are outgoing and fun, others that are incredibly smart and more that are successful in the business world. We see acts of terror on the news and turn to fear, when we need to realize that many Muslim people are fearful too.

That brings me to people with white skin. Cue, me feeling nervous and like I could vomit again writing this section. I want to choose my words wisely here so as not to offend. Most white people are not racist. Just like there are African-American “thugs” that are few and far between, a small group of Hispanic illegal immigrants, outliers in the Muslim population who commit acts of terror, there are also some white people who are racist. Just like it sucks for the other races though, it sucks for white people that most of the population is assumed to be that way. I bet if people of other races sat back and thought about people they knew personally, they might come to realize that most of them are not racist people. There are a range of people with white skin from “thugs” of their own to super successful CEOs; people who can dance like crazy and peaceful yogis who love everyone and everything.

united2

This is a cry for peace, love and unity. Our country seems to be growing increasingly divided every day. When will we realize that hatred is not the answer?

I’m not asking for everyone to be okay with how things are and quiet themselves. Our country has major issues, but what we all need to realize is that yes, certain groups of people are oppressed and that needs to be fixed. We also need to realize that people with white skin are not always necessarily the enemy, just like I have to remind myself that men are not always the enemy. If we want to see a more equal, peaceful world, we have to change the way we’re currently doing things and come together regardless of what skin color we may have, what sex we are and what religion we practice.

So that’s that. All I’m asking is that everyone stop tearing each other down and start taking steps to enact positive change.. and that can only happen one step at a time. Through love and unity, we will find peace.

No worries though, my blog is usually a pretty light, happy place to live in, so you can definitely expect yummy summer recipes, awkward marriage moments and my thoughts on The Bachelorette in the future.

C’est la vie,

Anna

 

A Girl’s Heartbreaking Birthday: How We Can Make This Year Rock

 

When I was mindlessly scrolling through my Facebook news feed thinking about what I wanted to eat for dinner, I came across a story that stopped me in my tracks. A news station released an article about a sweet girl, named Halle, whose heart was broken on her 18th birthday. About two seconds into the story, I felt a sharp pang of sadness in my chest. All I could think was how selfish and cruel these people must be to make this autistic girl feel worthless and unloved.  I could hear the kids in her class receiving the invitation to her birthday party laughing to each other saying “did she invite you too?” And yet, they all chose, together probably, not to go.

It takes me back to my own high school career… thinking about the people who were bullied and isolated just because their peers were mean and they were different. It draws attention to a bigger problem overall that happens in each and every school around the world. Just because someone is different, people leave them out, ridicule them, talk about them and truly make their lives miserable. I looked into it a little further and found that “over 3.2 million students are victims of bullying each year” (dosomething.org). How crazy is that? It’s staggering and heartbreaking really.

It’s pretty phenomenal how much we grow up from high school to young adulthood. Not to say that people don’t still treat others poorly, but some things just aren’t important anymore. I remember thinking in high school that it was so important what people wore or that some people were so weird, and now that quirkiness in people is what I find so endearing. I think to myself how boring it would be if we were all exactly the same and “cool”.

In thinking about all of this, I did a little research on what kindness does to a human being. Dr. David Hamilton explains that kindness “makes us happier, gives us healthier hearts, slows aging, makes for better relationships and is contagious.” I have to think this is true for both sides of the equation, both the person being kind and the person being treated with kindness.

The whole reason Halle’s cousin released her picture in the first place was so she could be sure that her 19th birthday is waaaay better than her 18th and that she receives the love and kindness that she especially, but really any human being deserves.

FullSizeRender (1)

I was so excited to pick her out a card at the grocery store and write her a little something to let her know just how special I think she is. I’m crossing my fingers hoping a few people who read this will send her a card too and even more so, that this post will encourage us all to do something nice for someone else. This world can truly be a happier place, it just takes one act of kindness at a time.

C’est la vie,

Anna

 

Heartbreaking Photo of Teen Sitting Alone at Her Birthday Party Goes Viral

The 5 Side Effects of Kindness

https://www.dosomething.org/us/facts/11-facts-about-bullying

Smart Phones are the Best & Worst Thing That Has Happened to Us

*photo cred to smart phone experts

*photo cred to smart phone experts

If you had to think of one item you couldn’t live without, what would it be? If you’re like me and almost every other millennial out there, it’s probably your iPhone (Galaxy, Droid, etc.) When I really think about it, my phone goes everywhere with me, to bed, to the bathroom, on a run, at lunch… literally everywhere. It blows my mind that just a few years ago, I did life without one of these things. I mean I can’t imagine not being able to check my Instagram, not have my emails sent to me instantaneously, having to go back to using a GPS you stick to the car window. Anyone can admit that smart phones have completely revolutionized our lives, but I can’t help but think they’ve done some bad along the way too. My friend recently told me he was going to have to go a week without a phone and I felt literal pain for him. Should I really be this dependent on my phone? … here’s why smart phones are the best and the worst thing that has happened to us.

The Best Things:

1. No matter what time of day or where we are, we can know what everyone else is doing or saying. Whether it’s someone sending a grid-cell-24434-1407875545-3 emoji in the bathroom, snapchatting while at work or tweeting about their car ride, we know what’s up with everyone.

2. We can share our pictures. Can you imagine taking pictures just to print them out and stick them in a book to keep on a shelf? What’s the fun in that?

3. Your phone can get you anywhere. You can be in the middle of nowhere and Google Maps will easily give you step by step instructions on how to get un-lost. This in itself is very much so, a life saver.

4. You know what the weather is. You don’t have to step outside to see what it feels like or look out the window for rain, you know because you looked at the little device in your hand…all before getting out of bed. This convenience goes for all of the other millions of apps we can use too; to watch our calorie intake, make ourselves look better in pictures, entertain us with games, keep us up to date on news, etc.

5. They make life less awkward. Can you imagine sitting on a bus ride, eating alone in a restaurant or waiting in a doctor’s office without a phone? Would everyone just awkwardly trade off staring at each other and staring at some spot on the wall?

6. They make relationships easier. It’s not like you call someone’s house anymore and don’t get to talk to them because they aren’t home. You can talk to them across the country, on the toilet, at work, while their out shopping, etc. We are all in constant communication.

The Worst Things:

1. Contrary to knowing what everyone else is doing, everyone else knows what you’re doing. If you don’t have great pictures across the globe, traveling the world and helping sick babies everyone knows. If you’ve been anti-social and haven’t hung out with anyone in a while, everyone knows. Don’t even get me started on relationship statuses…

2. It keeps us from experiencing life. Instead of being forced to meet new people in public or take in a breathtaking scene, we are too busy taking a picture of the breathtaking scene or reading what all of our “friends” are saying on social media.

3. They can also ruin relationships. For one, being able to screenshot your text messages and send to others is a mess in itself. For two, have you gone on a date lately? Does the guy politely leave his phone in his pocket? Chances are that he doesn’t. He’s probably checking the scores of five different sporting events, texting anybody and everybody, watching gross snapchats from other guys, reading Twitter… the list goes on and on. If you can get good conversation in you’re lucky, much less a meaningful night. There’s also a good chance that you are also on your phone doing the same thing, which means there’s not much conversation at all…  you hardly get to know each other.

4. We’ve lost our independence. If we were all to lose our phones today, many of us wouldn’t know how to survive. We’d struggle to read a map and follow directions, we wouldn’t know how to make plans and meet up with people, our friendships would probably be non-existent… not to mention, we’d always be bored. Who knew one little device could entirely take over our lives and make us forever dependent upon it?

Sorry to go on a rant and rave about smart phones, but I swear I have a love/hate relationship with mine. I’m so attached I could never let it go, but sometimes, I dream of disconnecting myself from the world and enjoying a nice date with no interruptions. Or I fancy myself an explorer that could make it with just a map and some supplies…that I would enjoy the sunset or mountain ridge and not have to worry about posting pictures of me holding a monkey.

Back to reality! I think while writing this post I just missed a ton of notifications, so it’s time to go.

C’est la vie,

Anna

You Probably Guessed It… Farmer Chris is the Next Bachelor

LOGO_Bachelor-20141

*photo cred to ABC (The Bachelor)

E! News recently posted an article announcing that Farmer Chris is the next Bachelor. We all guessed it from the second he left the show that we would see him again, but why was ABC so shady about it? Normally, on the After the Final Rose segment they announce who the new Bachelor/Bachelorette will be… but not this time. Host Chris did make a few remarks about finding out the new Bachelor and laughed Farmer Chris’ way, but there was no official announcement.

According to E!, Arie (from Emily’s season) was a contender. What a shock! It’s generally always one of the top guys left from the previous season and honestly, shouldn’t Arie have found someone by now? E! is a pretty credible source and rumors about Farmer Chris began a long time ago, but I’m not going to get too comfortable considering there STILL hasn’t been an official announcement from ABC. Considering the show has been over for a little while, I feel like the announcement won’t have as much excitement. The chatter about the next Bachelor has died down and no one seems to be sitting on the edge of their seat waiting to find out who he is.

A lot of girls are pumped for Farmer Chris to star in this season, but honestly, I’m indifferent. He’s nice and all… but I’m not sure I’m into the whole farmer, your wife has to live in the middle of nowhere, secret admirer thing. What do you think? Are you dying to see Farmer Chris again?

C’est la vie,

Anna