OMG Moments

Latinitas share a laugh as they talk about their embarrassing moments.

One time, I was at the mall with all my friends celebrating a ceremony and I was in the middle of telling a good joke. I was looking back at my friends when I was talking to them. Being the great friends that they are, they didn’t tell me that there was a big sign in the middle of the walkway. When I turned my back, I ran right into it and fell backwards on my butt. Everyone was laughing including myself.   –Sam

 

In 5th grade, there was this teacher and she hated me. I guess one time she was yelling at me and I ran away from her and hid from her under the table. She had to call security to get me out and I remember the whole class staring at me like if I was a crazy person.  –Lexy

 

This happened yesterday and I was at Wal-Mart. There was a cute guy walking and I started staring at him. When he turned around I tried not to make it so obvious, but then I ran into a shopping cart.   –Karen

 

I had the music really loud and I was singing; however, I thought no one could ever hear me because the music was so loud. Turns out I forgot I had my earphones on. I was yelling “What Makes You Beautiful”, in the middle of the lunch room. Everyone was staring.   –Joella

 

One time my family was at a buffet style place, and I wasn’t paying attention. While I was carrying my food down the stairs, I completely missed the last step. I tripped and broke a plate and sent food all over the nearest table.   –Sofia

Latinas in TV & Film

WonderWomanThese famous women helped pave the way for generations of Latinos in TV and film.  In the early days of Hollywood, some of these Latina actresses opened doors by being the first Latina stars. More recently, Latinas in TV have reached new heights of stardom by becoming highly visible and starring in their own shows.

EARLY HOLLYWOOD

Lupe Velez- (1908-1944)

María Guadalupe Villalobos Vélez was born in San Luis Potosí, Mexico on 1908. One out of five children, Velez was said to be aggressive and impulsive so she was sent to study at Our Lady of the Lake in San Antonio, Texas. She began her career in Mexico in 1924 and later emigrated to Hollywood where she was picked for the film The Gaucho (1927). She became so popular that the “Mexican Spitfire” was written around her. By the age of 21 she had already done over 10 films. She was known as one of the first Latina women to make it in Hollywood opening the doors for Latinas. Although constantly portraying love scenes her personal life was the opposite and  she sadly took her life at the age of 36 for still unknown reasons.

Carmen Miranda (1909-1955)

Born in Marco de Canaveses, Portugal in 1909 The Portuguese Brazillian samba singer, Carmen Miranda was born as Maria do Carmo Miranda da Cunha. Most commonly known as the “Brazillian Bombshell” she was a singer, dancer, Broadway actress and film star!  Making her stardom in Brazil her talent lead to Broadway and soon Hollywood. Her first film in Hollywood was Down Argentine Way in 1940. She is recognized by the signature fruit hat she wore in American movies in specific The Gang’s All Here (1943). Soon she became the highest paid woman in the United States. Her death came from a heart attack in Beverly Hills at the age of 46.

Dolores Del Rio- (1905-1983)

The Mexican actress was born in Durango, México in 1905 as María de los Dolores Asunsola y Lopez Negrete. She married at the young age of 16 to Jaime Martinez, 34 and had a two year honeymoon in Europe. Later she moved to the United States where her career in singing and acting took off as she made her debut in the film Joanna. She soon continued to play roles in silent films becoming one of the most important female figures in Mexican Cinema. Jumping from Mexico to the United States for roles, she even worked with Rock n’ Roll Star Elvis Presley in Flaming Star. Winning an Ariel Award for best actress her life ended due to multiple health issues.

WONDER WOMAN

Lynda Carter- (1951- )

Daughter of Juanita (Mexican/ Spanish) and Colby Carter(Scottish and Irish), Linda Jean Cordova Carter was born in Phoenix, Arizona in 1951. She is best known for winning Miss World USA in 1972 and playing the famous role of Wonder Woman. At the age of 17, she joined her cousins’ in the band The Relatives. She later attended the Arizona State University and continued to pursue a career in music. After winning Miss World, she moved to LA where she studied acting. Along the way, she guest starred on The Jackson Show, The Muppet Show, and even portrayed Rita Hayworth in The Love Goddess. Although acting opened many doors for her, she continued on to sing and even releasing a solo album called Portrait. She now has a website in which she sells her music and has tour announcements.

TV SHOW HOST

Cristina Saralegui- (1948- )

Born in Havana , Cuba Cristina Saralegui on 1948 she fled to Miami, Florida in 1960 following the Cuban Revolution.  She attended the University of Miami and in 1973 she began an internship with the magazine Vanidades which lead her to become the editor of the Spanish version of the Cosmopolitan magazine. After almost a decade of being an editor she launched her talk show, El Show de Cristina on Univision which had many prominent guests and ended after 21 years and earned 12 Emmys. She continued to publish a magazine Cristina: La Revista along with various books.  The “Spanish Oprah” journalist, actress, talk show host, and activist she is also created a foundation along with her husband, called Arriba la Vida to promote AIDS education in the Latino community and help other AIDS related causes.

Latinas in film have been taking on more starring roles in current times and Latina characters have evolved over time thanks to these leading Latina ladies.

Expressing Culture Through The Arts

ritamorenoCreative expression is a great way to celebrate your culture. These inspiring Latina leaders used their creativity in different forms of art to illustrate children’s books, paint political artwork, design new fashion trends, create musicals and sing about their heritage.

FILM/MUSIC/DANCE – Rita Moreno –(1931-)

Puerto Rican actress Rita Moreno was born in Humacao, Puerto Rico in 1931 as Rosa Dolores Alverio. Her mother was a seamstress and her father a farmer. She moved to New York with her mother at a young age where she began dancing lessons at age 11 and appeared on Broadway in her early teens including her first role in film leaving school at the same time.  Best known for her role as Anita in the film musical West Side Story (1961) she had to sing dance and act. The role won her an Academy Award for best supporting actress this meant she was the first Hispanic actress to win a Best supporting Actress Oscar. She continued her acting career in the cast of The Electric Company and guest appeared in The Cosby Show, George Lopez, The Golden Girls and Miami Vice. She is the only Hispanic to have won an Oscar, an Emmy, a Grammy and a Tony and was even given the Presidential Medal of Freedom in2004.

ART – Frida Kahlo- (1907-1954)

Born as Magdalena Carmen Freida Kahlo y Calderón in Conocían, México City, Mexico she became an artists after being tragically injured in a bus accident. Her father was a German photographer urged her to play soccer and do other activities after she had contracted polio and the illness damaged her leg causing her to have a limp. She attended National Preparatory School where she met Diego Rivera an artist who would later become her husband. After the accident which injured her hip as she recuperated she painted her first self-portrait. In her art she showed bright and vibrant colors as well as making them very personal. From having exhibits and incredible success in New York, Paris, and Mexico she became very popular. Despite her decline in health she continued to paint and continued with her political activism till the time of her death at the age of 47.

FASHION – Carolina Herrera-(1939- )

The Venezuelan-American born as Maria Carolina Josefina Pacanins y Niño in Caracas, Venelzuela was inspired by her grandmother to enter the world of fashion. She was surrounded by luxury yet grew up in a strict home where she began sewing clothes for her dolls. She took 20 dresses to New York where soon upscale fashion retailers wanted to take the line and by 1981 her first collection was shown in New York’s metropolitan Club. Her company began small but lead to success as when she designed Caroline Kennedy’s wedding dress. Also she was the on of the first to use shoulder pads to make a woman’s waist seem smaller. Growing her business she has expanded to Europe and opened her first store in Manhattan in 2000. Known by her talent she has even dressed first lady Michelle Obama and continues to succeed.

ART – Carmen Lomas Garza- (1948- )

The Mexican-American artist was born in 1948 in Kingsville, Texas. Lomas’ art work is inspired by her family and parents who were politically involved through the American GI Forum and which inspired her to be involved in the Chicano movement. She attended the Texas Arts & Industry University, Juarez-Lincoln/Antioch Graduate School, and San Francisco State University where she earned her M.A. Her work can be seen in children’s books such as Family Pictures/Cuadros de Famila and In my family/En mi Familia which commonly show the traditional Mexican-American way of life in Texas and California. Her art isn’t limited to just books, but also has artwork at the University of Texas at Austin and a website where her work can be purchased.

MUSIC – Jenni Rivera- (1969-2012)

Born on July 2, 1969 as Dolores Janney Rivera, the Mexican-American singer produces 15 gold, 15 platinum and 5 double platinum records. As a teen mother at the age of 15 she struggled but managed to complete High school and college. Marrying Trino Marin she had three children. In leaving the relationship she discovered her passion for music and began working for her father’s record label. As her career rose she married again and appeared and produced Jenni Rivera Presents:Chiquis& Raq-C (2010)and I Love Jenni (2008). Although her life had rough patches Rivera soon became known as “La Diva de la Banda”. Through a course of difficult family times her past inspired her to help women and founded the Jenni Rivera Love Foundation and was named spokeswoman for the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. Winning and being nominated for Billboard awards among other awards throughout her music career her life tragically ended in December 9, 2012 dying in a plane crash where no bodies were found. Even after her death her music and autobiography, Unbreakable: My Story My Way continues making success.

Zumba Your Heart Out

DSC_0259Dancing Salsa may have been considered exercise before, but now it’s one of the most popular exercising techniques around. The Zumba craze began in the 1990s and was started by a Colombian dancer. Imagine how many other salsa dancers were upset when they found out they could have gotten so many people across the globe to take place in a fitness routine revolved around doing what you love.

Zumba is now officially trademarked by Zumba Fitness, LLC., and it is basically a dance routine that is done to Latin music, mostly, as well as other genres of music. Although Zumba can be learned by almost anyone, Zumba.com has a series of programs and workout videos that can be purchased in order to help people participate in the exercise program in the correct and healthy manner. When on the website, there’s even a link to find out how to become a Zumba teacher if you’d like to teach at a gym in your area or just with friends.

Although Zumba can be done alone, the more the merrier! If someone wants to make their own dance routine, she could always choose a song, look up some salsa moves, and make them work with the beat. That’s exactly what Julia Sloan, 20, did for her women’s retreat. She chose a song she liked, Dance Again by Jennifer Lopez, looked up some Zumba videos on Youtube, and just made her own routine to the song and taught it to a group of women. “It was great and I had so much fun,” she said after the retreat.

Even celebrity Latinas love doing Zumba because it’s so healthy and fun to do. Jennifer Lopez (Puerto Rican), Eva Longoria (Mexican), Shakira (Colombian), and Eva LaRue (Puerto Rican) are only some of the many Latina celebrities who include Zumba in their daily workout routines.

According to Zumba.com, “we take the “work” out of workout, by mixing low-intensity and high-intensity moves for an interval-style, calorie-burning dance fitness party. Once the Latin and World rhythms take over, you’ll see why Zumba® Fitness classes are often called exercise in disguise. Super effective? Check. Super fun? Check and check.”

If boredom strikes and there’s nothing to do in your town (or if there is), Zumba  your heart out. “I’ve always wanted to try Zumba,” said Alejandra Luna, 16. “But I never wanted to do it alone. I never thought of looking up videos on Youtube and just doing it with my friends.”

What isn’t to love? Great music and loads of fun dancing in a room with your friends! That’s gotta be one of the best workouts that’s ever existed. Curious about how to get into a class in your area? Hit up the Zumba website. It is extremely user friendly and contains plenty of information about classes, teachers, programs, and so on.

As the website says, “Zumba is for everybody, and every body!”

Healthy Chica Tips

Healthy chicas share their top tips to staying healthy.  10897908_392721950899185_1479405010683390063_n

1. Focus on the Whole You
Being healthy not only means taking care of your physical health, but also focusing on your overall mental and emotional health as well.

  • “You not only have to focus on being physically healthy or good eating habits, but also being mentally healthy, emotionally healthy and physically.” -Ariana
  • “Being healthy by staying active and eating well will give you energy and it improves your emotional and physical being.”-Lesly
  • “Keep your body healthy both mentally and physically.” – Elizabeth

 

2. Stay Active
Teens should get 60 minutes or more of physical activity a day according to TeenHealth.gov. Staying physically active doesn’t necessary mean going to the gym or doing complicated exercises. Finding fun physical activities can make it easy to create a healthy habit.

  • “Stay fit so that you can feel good about yourself.” -Victoria.
  • “Exercising is healthy like volleyball, basketball, track, tennis and dancing.” – Ydaliz
  • “Go outside and get active for 60 minutes or more.” – Alyssa
  • “Exercise to keep your body healthy.” -Kiara
  • “Be more active to keep your body healthy.” – Ashley
  • “Exercise by doing zumba, yoga or even belly dancing.” – Abigail

 

3. Eat Healthy Foods

For a helpful guide on eating healthy, check out the MyPlate from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Eat a balanced meal from different food group with half of your plate made up of vegetables and fruits, one-quarter of your plate should be grains and one-quarter protein.

  • “Eat healthy like veggies and fruit. Eat breakfast every day.  -Ashley
  • “Eat vegetables and fruits.  It is not good to eat junk food all the time, but it is okay to eat a little bit for it sometimes.” -Alyssa
  • “You should eat a lot of green vegetables and eat lots of colorful fruits to stay strong and safe.” – Natalie
  • “We should eat more healthy stuff then junk food.” – Kiara
  • You have to stay healthy and don’t eat a lot of junk food.” -Senorina

 

4. Be Confident & Take Care of Your Mental Health

Being healthy also means having a healthy body image.

  • “Don’t listen to what others think or say to you.” -Elizabeth
  • “You should also not compare yourself to other people and never give up on yourself.” – Victoria
  • “I’ve been struggling with my self-esteem for a while, but I learned how to stay healthy mentally and physically. I know that I’ll eventually learn how to be content with me and my body.” -Ariana
  • “You shouldn’t criticize yourself or compare yourself to other people.” – Senorina
  • “Don’t think negative about yourself and love who you are.” -Elizabeth

 

5. Make Healthy Choices

Make sure that you stay away from toxic substances from smoking to alcohol and drugs.

  • “Don’t do drugs like alcohol or smoking.” – Ydaliz
  • “Smoking can cause a lot of bad stuff like it can cause cancer and it will cause a lot of problems.” – Kiara
  • “Don’t smoke. It can cause lung cancer.” – Avery
  • “Don’t drink alcohol. Too much beer can give you brain damage.” -Daniella

True Story: Confessions of an Ex-Shoplifter

Clothing Fashion - LatinitasWhen I started my freshman year of high school, I began to surround myself with the wrong crowd. It was not until I had a brush with law enforcement that I really learned my lesson and the consequences that came with hanging out with the wrong people. I was not like the majority of the crowd I hung out with because most of my friends saw me as a “nerd” and made it seem as if it was a bad thing. Some of them would even poke fun at the fact that I was doing my work in class. None of this ever convinced me to give up being a “nerd,” but I did allow them to change me in some ways.

I remember thinking that I was having more fun with the girls that always got into trouble and I was not missing out. The fact of the matter is though, that I was. In high school, students that were late to class were directed to the attendance office to receive a detention card for that day. I would often times find myself with these friends of mine in detention because we would go out to eat for lunch, they did not share my urgency to get to class on time, so we would be tardy to class. I wasted my time in detention. I missed getting involved in clubs and extracurricular activities during most of high school, and it is something that I really regret.

A girl I started hanging out with would always talk about stealing clothes from the mall, and one day she took me along with her. I was so nervous. I knew that what she was doing was not right. I gave into peer pressure eventually and ended up shoplifting as well. I think that a part of me did this because I wanted to be “cool” and maybe lose the label of “nerd.” I kept shoplifting until one day a couple of my best friends and I had decided to take a trip to the mall. We made a promise to each other that we were going to stop shoplifting once and for all. We decided it was going to be the last time we would shoplift. It definitely was the last time, but the day did not go as planned because we were caught.

There was an undercover cop inside the store that caught us and escorted us into a store office. In the office, we met a man who began to ask us questions as he emptied out our bags of stolen merchandise. The store managers came into the room my friends and I were in and expressed their anger with us for trying to steal. This man then told us that what we tried to steal was worth more than $100. Therefore, we could not just walk away with a simple fine, but they would have to call the cops on us. As soon as I heard this news, my heart immediately started beating very rapidly because I was so scared.

I quickly began to regret ever befriending the girl that had gotten me into shoplifting. More importantly, I was very angry with myself for falling for peer pressure. I also began to think that nerd is not even a bad word because it just shows you care about your work. I would rather be called a nerd than a criminal any day. Policemen then escorted my friends and I outside the mall in handcuffs at fourteen years old. It was the most embarrassing moment of my entire life, and it made me regret ever even thinking about shoplifting. We then had to spend the night in juvenile hall, and I will never forget that.

I remember sitting in a cell with my friends, and all of us felt as if the world was ending. We all could only imagine the kind of trouble we were in, but we would have rather been getting lectured by our parents then in this very cold cell with no sweater. I felt  claustrophobic because the small cell we were in had a glass wall that made it look like no air was coming in. I kept looking at the clock and watching the hours pass very slowly until it was around one o’clock in the morning, and a guard let us know that we would have to spend the night. My heart sank. She then went on to tell us that we were all going to shower one after the other and change into the uniform. While showering and using the restroom, it is standard that a woman guard watch over you as you do this and she search you at this vulnerable state to make sure that you are not entering the facility with any items. I remember her telling me, “You do not belong here, let this be the last time I see you in here.” I could not imagine having someone watch over me while I showered or used the restroom. I definitely did not ever want to see her again either. After showering, we were then escorted to our personal stalls that had a bed like bench with a thin padding, no pillow, and a thin blanket. I was unable to sleep at all that night. It was very uncomfortable, and the light was on the entire time. I remember thinking, “Wow, what am I doing here. I don’t belong here.”

The next morning we had to eat breakfast at tables with the other girls in the ward. I was unable to bring myself to eat the food, so I just listened in to what the other girls at the tables were talking about. It seemed that a lot of the girls had been there before and were in for much more serious crimes. All of the girls seemed to be confiding in the guard and at one point they all began to bash on their parents. This is something that none of my friends, or I could ever bring ourselves to do. All of us were raised by single mothers who had always treated us right and were very kind.I just wanted to get out of there, and shortly after I did. This moment in my life made me want to change how I made friends. From then on, I have believed in the saying, “Dime con quién andas, y te diré quién eres.” The saying translates into tell me who you are with and I will tell you who you are. This is a great reminder to pick your friends wisely.

Take the Field with New Sports

SportStaying active is important to your health, no matter what time of year it is.  The Federal Department of Health and Human Services recommends that young people participate in a physical activity for at least sixty minutes a day. Sometimes that can feel hard to do. Whether it’s too cold to go outside, your favorite sport is out of season, or you’re getting tired of the same old routine, try a sport that is a little off the beaten path. The best things in life are always a little wacky.

Kickball

This is a game for fans of baseball and softball. The rules are very similar. There are four bases and a pitcher’s mound. A pitcher rolls a kickball to the person at home and they try to kick far enough to have time to make it to the next base. If the defense catches the ball or tags them with it, that’s an out. The familiar rules make it easy for anyone to join in.

“Another organization challenged my national honor society group to a game of kickball once and it got very competitive,” said Mariah Cruz, age 19. “It felt like I was just hanging out with friends and I had a lot of fun.”

Some areas have community leagues. You can stay active and meet some people who live in your neighborhood.

Ultimate Frisbee

Ultimate Frisbee is basically football and Frisbee combined. A regulation field is 70 yards long, but can be adjusted to any space constraints. The important thing is that there are two goal lines on either side of the field.

To start, the offense throws the Frisbee to the offense while each team stands at their end zones. The offensive player must throw the Frisbee to someone else on their team. When someone is holding the Frisbee they cannot move and they only have ten seconds to make the pass. No extra steps or running with the Frisbee. The defense tries to intercept the Frisbee, but physical contact with other players is not allowed. No tackling! When the Frisbee is caught by someone in their end zone then that team scores. Rules are enforced by the players and honesty and fairness is a big part of the sport.

Rock Climbing

A fear of heights isn’t the only challenge to this sport. Lifting yourself up a rock wall is a lot of work! Arm, leg, and ab muscles help you climb and keep your hold. You don’t have to go out and find a cliff to scale either. Some gyms have rock walls as well as entertainment centers. Safety harnesses and shoes are provided some places and help keep you safe. If you do have a fear of heights, this might be a good place to start. You can rock climb alone or take a friend along and see who can ring the bell at the top first.

“For me, rock climbing isn’t a sport–it’s a way to conquer my fear of heights,” shared Chin Lin Pan, age 21. “It’s scary, especially once you’re halfway up the wall, but it’s rewarding once you get all the way up to the top.”

Quidditch

Yes, that magical sport from the “Harry Potter” series is real. No one is actually flying around, but there are brooms involved.

“My college has a quidditch team and it is really intense,” shared Amanda Rubio, 20. “I am a huge ‘Harry Potter’ fan, and I love that this sport became a real thing.”

In quidditch, there are three chasers who score with a volleyball, two beaters who defend the chasers with the three kickballs, and a keeper who guards the goals at each end. Everyone runs around on broomsticks and the game ends when the person dressed as a golden snitch is caught by a seeker. Grab some friends or see if your town is one of the many communities with a quidditch league.

Social Dancing

You may not think that dancing is a sport, but look at “Dancing with the Stars.” It can get competitive and is a good exercise. There are competitions for everything from salsa and tango to the waltz and the polka. If you want to get started or are looking for something with less pressure, social dance nights are fun.

Different dance-oriented organizations host special dance nights where you can go out and learn a new skill. If you don’t know anything about these dances, that’s okay! Many places have free lessons, so you can pick up the basic steps.

Next time you’re in a rut, go out and give one of these sports a try. No matter what your interests are, there is a sport out there for you to try. As long as you are moving and having fun, you are on your way to staying healthy.

HERstory: Frida Kahlo

1939_photo_nickolas_murayFrida Kahlo was a storyteller who shared her personal stories of love, pain, pride and self-discovery using paintbrushes and a mirror. To this day, she is considered not only of one Mexico’s greatest artists but an icon for Mexican culture and feminine beauty, women’s rights and equality.

She was born Magdalena Carmen Frieda Kahlo y Calderón on July 6, 1907, in Coyocoán, Mexico City, Mexico. Kahlo was born and raised in her family’s home–later referred to as the Blue House or Casa Azul, which would be her workspace and home in her later years before her passing. Throughout her life, she was constricted by physical disabilities. Around the age of 6, she contracted polio, which caused her to be bedridden for nine months. She did recover from her illness but had a slight limp because the disease damaged her right leg and foot. However, it seemed as if her physical limitations only pushed her strength and talents further. She was encouraged by her father to be active and play sports, acts that were deemed impossible for her to do.

At the age of eighteen, she was involved in a trolley accident that would have her injured for the rest of her life. Doctors were not sure she would live, much less ever walk again but she did, despite the odds. Once again, she chose an activity that strengthened her recovery: painting. One year after her accident, she completed her first of many self-portraits, which would gain worldwide recognition for their honest portrayals of her life.

Her work was often described as “surreal” because of its strange, dreamlike images. While her portraits and paintings weren’t necessarily realistic, they did display more than what she could say in words.

“I paint my own reality. The only thing I know is that I paint because I need to, and I paint whatever passes through my head without any other consideration,” Kahlo said.

Her faint mustache striking monobrow and colorful wardrobe have made her a symbol of the traditional Mexican woman in that she never transformed her natural appearance. Quite the opposite, she would flaunt her features and dressed in a way that paid tribute to her culture.

She was famously married to Diego Rivera, another revolutionary Mexican artist. Despite their rocky relationship, Rivera greatly admired Kahlo for her original artistic take and her expressive attitude.  “Frida is the only example in the history of art of an artist who tore open her chest and heart to reveal the biological truth of her feelings,” Rivera said. “The only woman who has expressed in her work an art of the feelings, functions, and creative power of woman.”

Her career as a professional artist allowed her to live in the United States and travel to Europe to showcase her unique works at high-end galleries. Her artwork and, most notably, the way she carried herself inspired her audiences. Frida considered herself to be an independent woman, free from society labels. As a result, she was seen as a rebel, a title she gladly embraced along with her other flaws.

“I used to think I was the strangest person in the world but then I thought there are so many people in the world, there must be someone just like me who feels bizarre and flawed in the same ways I do,” Frida said. “I would imagine her, and imagine that she must be out there thinking of me, too. Well, I hope that if you are out there and read this and know that, yes, it’s true I’m here, and I’m just as strange as you.”

Even after her passing on July 13, 1954, she left behind a legacy, one that inspires others to persevere through life’s obstacles, accept flaws as well as their beauty and freely express their innermost emotions and thoughts.

Want VS Need

MoneyWritten by Priscilla Moctezuma

Have you ever walked into your favorite clothing store and wanted to buy every single item? I know I have, and it is extremely tempting. The real question you should ask yourself is:“Do I want it or do I need it?” Teaching yourself not to buy certain things will not be easy, but worth it. It begins with identifying the differences between want vs. need. When you want something it is because you desire it, everyone has it, so now I want one. On the other hand, when you need something it is because you cannot survive without it.In contrast, another way to look at differences is by observing how we eat. For example, needing something to eat vs. wanting to go out to a nice restaurant.

When you are of age to start working, getting a job will help create the boundaries between want vs need. In the mean time, volunteer! Volunteering looks amazing on your college application, and it will help you recognize the differences between your wants and needs.”What you want” will no longer matter because you will surround yourself with people who are less fortunate than you are and it will help you recognize that wanting the new iPhone will no longer be an importance to purchase since it’s something you don’t necessarily need at the moment. Doing so, will put everything into perspective and helps them realize “the new outfit mom bought was not a big deal anymore”.

Amelia*, a high school junior, says she loves to help her community. “It  teaches me that I can change a person’s life by a simple smile or a conversation. Volunteering helped me set aside my wants and focus on the things I already had. So, should you volunteer ? Absolutely! It really change my perspective on life.”

When you are ready to start working in high school, a job and creating a budget will help determine your wants vs needs. Balancing your money is super important.  A job can teach you the value of the dollar by working hours to get more money.  Once you have received your money, set it aside.  Cash can be very easy to spend, so I recommend storing it away. This method can allow your savings to increase and can create the opportunity to spend on something you truly need.

“One thing I have learned about getting a job is that’s it not easy, but totally worth the paycheck. Sure, you have urges to spend, but once you realize how much a meal is at Chick-fil-a that price helps you establish a budget. Especially, if you have the responsibility of paying for your cellphone bill now, like me since I am about to be considered an adult, my parents say. My advice is budget yourself. Once that is done, you can then separate what you need and want,” says Marianne, high school senior.

I know it’s hard to not buy that cute dress at the mall, but other young girls do not have that option. So, next time just think to yourself, “do I really need it? If the answer no, walk away.

*Name has been changed. 

Making Your Desk a Little Happier

Mod-Podge-desk-organizer

Credit: CraftyAmy from Babble.com

Written by Elena Barrera-Walters

Having a clean, organized, and inviting desk is the best way to get your work done, no matter the time of year. Sometimes, though, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the clutter and piles of pencils, in which case, that’s where this can help you.

YOU NEED:

  • a desk
  • a few desk organizers
  • a whiteboard
  • school supplies
  • bucket or box (if necessary)

1. If at all possible, get a desk that has a lot of room and space for organization. The more space, the better. It makes the work environment seem much less intimidating.

2. Organize and separate your supplies. Have what you use most often, usually pens and pencils, in the most available area. Put them into a desk organizer for easy access and separate them as you see fit.

3. Have a space specifically reserved for any extra school supplies, or big boxes of things. Boxes of markers or new notebooks always go in the same drawer, so it’s easier to know where to go when you need something.

4. Have an area for your electronic supplies or any other less commonly used school supplies. While it doesn’t need to be quite as well organized or accessible as the pens and pencils, it’s still very necessary to know where those items are.

5. You want to make sure that you are able to put your actual school binders and notebooks somewhere other than the exact space you’ll be working on. If you have more drawer space, keep them there, or buy a bucket or box to keep them in so they aren’t distracting or in the way.

6. For little study tools, I recommend putting them on top of your desk, as a source of inspiration to actually do that studying. Have a little organizer with post-its and paper clips, as well as some flash cards available.

7.  On a white board, set up a system to keep yourself prioritized. Making a chart with things you need to do, to study for, or prepare for really helps you with organizing how and when you’ll be doing your work.

8. While it isn’t necessary for homework, it’s really important to have some happy things on your desk that will make it feel like an inviting place to be. While candles or magazines are really good options, there are many things you could do that make your desk seem a little less intimidating.

 

While going to do work at a desk probably isn’t what you look forward to most in your day, that doesn’t necessarily mean it has to be a place you dread going to. Having an organized space, with a few little things to make you happy, will make the whole work process much less scary.

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