Wednesday, September 18, 2013

An Official Peace Corps Volunteer

Today, my sister was officially sworn in as a Peace Corps volunteer. It is more of an exciting moment than I expected it to be!

My sister messaged me on Viber yesterday, and she told me she would be sworn in as a volunteer later that day. She gave me the link that was going to stream the ceremony just in case I wanted to watch. However, she mentioned that it wouldn't be on until 2 am Eastern Standard time (2 pm Filipino time). She seemed really excited about it, but I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to get up for it since I'm pretty selfish and like to sleep. But I set my alarm anyways.

I'm so glad I woke up. The ceremony itself reminded me of a college graduation, but it was so cool to watch my sister speak Tagalog and perform a skit where she sang! That's one thing I really love about technology. The fact that I can watch my sister, on the other side of the world, accomplish one of the biggest moments in her life is definitely a benefit of technology.

I messaged when it was over letting her know I had woken up for, and watched, the whole ceremony. She was genuinely excited that someone had watched it. It makes me really sad though that I considered sleeping through it. How often is she going to do something like that again? Probably, never. So, even though she is 12 time zones away I'm glad it felt like I was there with her.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Coveting Intangible Things

I don't know about you, but I like things. Well, let me rephrase that, I like pretty objects, but I don't like clutter. I tend to find myself surfing the web (is that even a phrase anymore or did I just bring back 1999?) or window shopping thinking of all the things I want. But lately I've been thinking of skills I want to possess that don't cost money.

Learning about how to acquire languages in my grad school classes made me really want to learn a language. If millions of people can be bilingual why can't I? I'm actually making a conscious effort, among all the stresses I already have, to learn Spanish. I have a basic understanding of the language, but I want to become fluent. I also have spent much time thinking about a zombie apocalypse and how, if you are on the run you don't care about those objects any more, you will rely on your skills.

I decided to make a list of things of intangible things I want to possess:

1. Spanish fluency

2. Ability to sew

3. Bible verse memorization

4. Calligraphy improvement

5. Web page design skills

6. Relearn the how to do the splits

7. French braid someone else's hair

8. Make a latte/espresso

9. Speed reading

10. Shoot a gun and hit a bulls eye

What are some intangible things you are coveting?

Friday, September 13, 2013

Tips on Keeping Red Hair Red

I've been dying my hair red for about a year. I don't think I'm an expert. Actually, I am probably the last person who should be giving advice for anything related to beauty on the planet! But I have definitely learned a lot in the trial and error process. I've had a lot of people, especially random people, stop and ask me how I keep my hair so vibrant. While, I am no expert, I thought I'd blog about some of the things I do and use for my hair.
I'll start out by saying I use box dye. I haven't dyed my hair myself, but that's what I use. I'm really cheap, so going to the salon is definitely not in my budget. However, when it comes to box dye I tend to go for the more expensive dye. I just don't trust cheap dye. I started dying my hair with L'Oreal Feria Intense Red hair colors. The only problem I've ever had with it was after I had my hair dyed professionally it turned my hair blackish. But it faded when I washed my hair and turned redder. I used Garnier Fructis R3 Ultra Color Light Intense Auburn for the first time and I love it. The only problem I found was that it's harder to get it off your skin. With the L'Oreal Feria I never had a problem with it dying my skin.

The number one tip I have is only wash your hair every 4-5 days. Now, before you get all "But my hair gets SOOOOO greasy after a day," hear me out! After the first week of trying to not wash my hair it did get very greasy. If you want to train your hair to not get oily as fast you need to get through the first week or so of not washing it every day. I like doing it on a week when I don't care what my hair looks like so I can put it up and not feel the oiliness. But once you start washing your hair every day that's when it gets oily faster. Also, don't touch your hair! That's what causes it to get so oily! This tip will also save you time in the shower!

When washing your hair use cold water! I can't stand cold showers, but I just make the water cold whenever the water touches my hair. So, before I later, and after the shampoo and conditioner rinse. Then I immediately turn the water back to hot!

As for shampoo, they all say to use shampoo with no sulfates. I just use Herbal Essence: Color Me Happy Shampoo. It has sulfates, but I figured since it's for color treated hair it'll be fine. As for conditioner, I use Organix Coconut Milk Conditioner. It's kind of pricey, but when your only washing your hair every 4-5 days it goes a long way. I bought it at Target. After a shower I put on Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula on my hair, focusing on my ends. I also bought it at Target, but I found it in the ethnic hair aisle.

I don't put any heat protection on my hair and I blow dry and straighten my hair ALL THE TIME! However, I am open to suggestions for a heat protection product you found that really works!
Now, I've never had a problem with my red hair dye getting on clothes or sheets while it's dry. It's when it's wet that you need to be careful. I alway use a dark towel when I wash my hair. Also, if you change clothes with wet hair make sure you wear a dark or red shirt. Also, be careful about rain! I'm always more conscious of carrying an umbrella with me. I also bring a towel with me if I wash my hair at someone's house or at a hotel.
Now, just remember, red hair color may vary after depending on your natural hair color. I would love to get more tips on hair dying! If there is something here I haven't answered feel free to leave a comment!

*This is my hair color after almost 4 weeks

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

El Supermercado Mexicano

I really enjoy being back in school. However, I do not enjoy working two jobs, being in school, and actually being graded. I over stress when it comes to grades. Grades make me a terrible person. But let's not think about that. I particularly enjoy my two language classes. I don't really like my diversity class, but I thought I'd blog about it anyways since it got me to go out of my comfort zone.

For this class we had to do a field experience where we did something related to another culture that we were not familiar with to experience the traditions, values, and demographics. After the experience we needed to write about it on our class blogs. The most common thing for people to do is go to a religious service. I decided against that and wanted to go somewhere they spoke a different language since I want to work with English Language Learners eventually. I ended up going to La Mexicana, a Mexican grocery store in Painesville based on a recommendation from my friend who is Mexican.

My whole intention of going was to speak in Spanish However, I chicken out really easily when it comes to talking Spanish because I am so bad. I don't even like speaking Spanish to one of my best friends because I'm afraid he'll judge me for not being able to have a Spanish accent or role my R's. This field experience was really good for me though. It got me to understand what my future ESL students might be feeling in a country where they don't know the language. I was too intimidated to speak Spanish because I did not want the women working at the store to make fun of me! Pathetic, I know. It was like I had to give a presentation in high school all over again. But it really put me in the perspective of a student who may also be intimidated to speak, and it got me thinking of all the things I could do to make my classroom warm and inviting for someone who knows little to no English.

It was a bit of a culture shock walking into the store. It's a lot different than going to a Mexican Restaurant. I understood a lot of what I read because my Spanish is much better when I can see the words in front of me. For a while, I was the only white person. The only other white person that was in the store was fluent in Spanish, which made things even more intimidating. No one there treated me any differently, although where were a few kids who stopped and stared at me. Maybe I had something in my teeth? For a short while I did feel like I was in a different country. Everyone in the store was speaking Spanish, except a few children, of a the white woman, who went back and forth between Spanish and English. I liked being able to try to pick out words, but my understanding of spoken Spanish is the worst.

Towards the end of the trip I just wanted to get out of there because I just felt so out of place and I knew I wasn't going to speak Spanish. My cashier did seem to know very little English, but she still said "Have a good day" in English. I did manage to get out a "Gracias (Thank you)" and she answered me back with "De nada (You're welcome)." I must admit that was one of the most intimidating experiences I have ever lived through. I think it's time I experience more of a world outside of my white suburban hometown!

Image of my grocery store purchases came from my Instagram. You can view it here.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Watercolor Experiment: Built

Mackenzie picked the topic this week. I love what she came up with for her idea of "built." Mine just looks like a 5 year old did it. I really like how she blends her colors. That's something I need to learn to do. I feel like my paintings are more like acrylic paintings than watercolors. But I guess this is why we are doing this!



Previous Experiments: 1

Sunday, September 1, 2013

It's a Major "Liebster" Award!

This morning I woke up to an e-mail from Olivia of All Those Little Things. She said she was a fan of my blog! My blog? The one I thought only close friends and family read? Yes, that one. I was pretty excited about that, but also the fact that she had nominated me for the liebster award. I heard of the liebster award awhile ago from a blogger I was following who had been nominated. The fact that I actually have followers who like my blog and aren't shamed into saying it, now that was cool. (Just kidding family and friends who read my blog and actually like it!)

What is the Liebster award? Well, if you google it (which I did the first time I had heard of it) it was started by a girl in Germany as a way to get bloggers of a few followers noticed. It's a way of building community in the blogger community. Liebster means dearest. So, you just find one of those sweet, dear, awesome up and coming blogs that you think is super cool.

Just think of it as that scene in A Christmas Story where Ralphie's dad gets that "major" award. It's super cool and awesome and you don't want anyone to take it from you, not even your jealous wife who does anything she can to get rid of it. It's awesome to you, but unless you get the award, it doesn't mean much.
Remember that one time I saw the major award in person?

Rules:
Rule #1.  Post 11 facts about yourself.
Rule #2.  Answer the 11 questions posed by the person who nominated you.
Rule #3.  Nominate 5 other bloggers with less than 200 followers for the award.
Rule #4.  Create 11 new questions for your nominees.
Rule #5.  Go to each blogger’s site and let them know about the award.
Rule #6.  Thank the person who nominated you and link back to his/her blog.

MY ANSWERS TO OLIVIA'S QUESTIONS:
  1. What is your fashion style? I have no idea. I've been told I'm "hipster," but I don't think so.  I usually just wear what I think is cute. I like vintage, lace, and dresses, but I'm not confined to those pieces 
  2. What is your favorite book? My favorite book is World War Z by Max Brooks, but my favorite series is the Harry Potter series by JK Rowling.
  3. If you could be any animal what would you be? I would probably be a dog, a husky, to be exact. Because dogs are awesome and they can be trained to perform or just wander around terrorizing people. I, personally, would want to be an Iditarod sled dog like Balto.
  4. What are your favorite names for a girl and a boy? Girl: Sophia, Emma; Boy: Alexander (No, these are not names I have picked out for my future children.
  5. Would you rather eat something blindfolded or without tasting it? Probably blindfolded. The less I know the better.
  6. Tell me about your best friend(s). I have several best friends. My friend, Rosendo, is super talented and awesome. I'll let his artwork speak for itself.
    I met Haley at Navigators at the University of Cincinnati. We didn't become friends until the last few years of college, but I now consider her one of my best friends. She's got a little baby girl, Cora. One thing I like best about Haley is that she is really laid back, and I don't feel like I have to hold back. I also loved our craft sessions which I miss so much!
    I also met Mackenzie at Navigators. She is super creative, and she inspires me all the time with her artwork, food, and love for God. She lives in Seattle, but I still feel like I can call her up any time.
    Finally, my friend Becky I've known since high school. She has a love for Cleveland just like me and loves to go exploring. She's also moving back to Cleveland! Yay!
  7. What is your favorite thing to do with your family? Ha. This is a good one. My family is pretty disfunctional when we do anything in public. I guess I would say just being together, especially during the holidays, because we don't do much as a family.
  8. If you could have any job in the world, what job would that be? I would love to be a full time blogger, with an income that allowed to me to travel so that I could blog about it. I would also love to be a designer of some kind. I still kick myself that I didn't go through with Interior Design. BUT I also love teaching! So I'm kind of doing what I love, just not quite.
  9. If you had the chance to live a different lifestyle, would you? Yes, not that I don't like who I am. I would just rather travel more and work less.
  10. 10. What is your favorite joke? I laugh at pretty much anything. But I can't think of my favorite joke. Those Bad Luck Brian memes always crack me up though.
  11. What are your top three favorite stores? Thrift stores, Target, and Forever 21
11 FACTS ABOUT ME:
  1. I'm super introverted (probably why I thrive in online posting). I like spending lots of time alone, but I don't like being alone all the time. I actually don't really like talking either. I absolutely hate talking on the phone.
  2. I have a blueish/purple line on my leg that I've had since I was little. I fell of a chair and scratched my leg on a baseboard heater in my room. The scar still remains.
  3. I had my lip pierced. I took it out because I kept swallowing the piercings.
  4. I believe in God, and I believe that Jesus is my Lord and Savior. 
  5. I have naturally curly hair.
  6. I have never left the United States. However, I'm saving up to visit my sister in the Philippines next summer.
  7. When I was little I had a gigantic coat. At recess I used to get my entire body inside of it and pretend I was in a house drinking hot chocolate instead of socializing. Didn't I tell you I was an introvert... and also weird.
  8. I will eat almost anything but milk, raisins, and bacon.
  9. There were over 800 people in my graduating class. I will never go to a high school reunion.
  10. I like being pale. I hate when people tell me I need more sun. Just because you are self conscious about your skin doesn't mean you have to take it out on me.
  11. I have a terrible memory, but I have an uncanny ability to remember birthdays.
MY 5 NOMINEES FOR THE LIEBSTER AWARDS:
  1. Mackenzie at The Elrod's: Sending Love from the West
  2. Haley at Golden Skies
  3. Ally at Fever Thrift*
  4. Alex at Whimsy Darling
  5. Monica at The First Lime
MY QUESTIONS FOR MY LIEBSTER BLOGS:
  1. Who is your role model?
  2. What band or musician could you listen to on repeat?
  3. What is your profession?
  4. Where were you born?
  5. Can you speak another language?
  6. How would you describe your decorating style?
  7. What is your favorite way of expressing yourself?
  8. Why did you start your blog?
  9. If you had a chance to live through any period in history other than your own which one would you choose and why?
  10. What do you do in your alone time?
  11. What is your favorite book?

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