Learning to Love Something New

Hey there!
Well, I am back at school, and I've finally gotten in to the swing of things. It has taken longer than I thought, but it has finally happened. I'm in a new department this semester (I've essentially finished my Political Science degree #crazy) and now I'm working on my second major, Writing. I'm taking 4 English classes, and this is the first time I'm not in a Poli Sci class since my freshmen year.

I've been working on getting to know my professors, their teaching styles, expectations as well as my classmates. This semester is definitely stretching my comfort zone, especially in my poetry writing workshop (not my forte). I know working on honing my writing skills will help me in the future, especially with all the writing I'll be doing, but it doesn't mean I'm loving it.

It's too early to say I dislike my classes, but they certainly aren't what I'm used to. No longer are my classes filled with current events, statistics and theories; they are now filled with literature, primary source documents and insightful discussions. I miss the familiarity of my Political Science classes, but I think this semester will be a great lesson in learning how to love something new.


Keep Calm and Carry On

So, here I am blogging from the airport #weird and I have to confess, this J.McLaughlin Sail-Cloth duffle bag, I got for Christmas, is everything I could have ever dreamed of. The perfect carry-on and super sturdy. Now I just have to figure out how to pack less....

We Interupt this blog for a message

Hey y'all
Sorry for the lack of posts! I'm headed back to school today!
Will write tomorrow


Why This Isn't the Final Nail in the Christie Coffin

img from Bloomberg
Chris Christie, Governor of New Jersey, has been caught up in some unflattering headlines, concerning the closures of several lanes of the  George Washington Bridge and the less-than-legal reasons behind their closures. Facing a class-action lawsuit as well as a media circus, many are wondering about what this means for Christie's political aspirations (Public Policy Polling reported that Christie had a pretty good chance of holding his own against Hillary Clinton, if she chooses to run). 

So what does this scandal mean for Christie?
How do Americans feel about one scandal in one state?
And how will they feel about it in two years?
Many are saying Christie is done, finished, and destined to live out his life as a typical, disgraced New Jersey politician. I however, do not see this as the final (and really only) nail in his coffin. Popular with as many Democrats as he is Republicans, Christie gained a ton of notoriety during Hurricane Sandy, and it's aftermath. His gruff manner has been a matter of discussion across media outlets, but American's seem to like his attitude. Never afraid to stand by his beliefs, rather than spew party line, Christie has been willing to make friends across the aisle, notably President Obama.

Christie's political aspirations will be decided by the press, that much is true-- it's the nature of political primaries puts the onus on the media to help the public differentiate between candidates. If Christie can survive this scandal, create a positive media cycle, I see hope. If his camp is only defensive, only tripping over themselves to apologize, creating a "spiral of silence" in the media and for political supporters, I think we may see his political aspirations wane and die.

Handled properly, this will make Christie stand out come primary season (the one time candidates want any type of press). His office needs to get in control now. Hire a strategic communications firm, find a real-life Olivia Pope. Who knows, if Christie really had a hands-off role in these closures, Dems may have an easier time forgiving him than Republicans will be for "forgiving" Hillary for Benghazi (but that my friends is for another day).


More Than Just Sweater Weather

So wow. Talk about cold. This weather is just...freezing. That's all I can say. One of those that raws you to the bone, makes you want to stay in bed, watch T.V. and drink cocoa. About a month back right before winter break, certain parts of Texas had this insane ice storm and I seemed like one of the few people actually prepared (who would've guessed?). So incase you encounter some nasty winter weather this year, I've provided my six winter essentials.


My Six Winter Essentials

1. Winter Leggings by American Apparel
These leggings are the absolute best. Not quite fleece, but not quite cotton (Terry-cloth to be exact), these leggings are super warm without getting that gross feeling some fleece pants give off. I bought one pair on a whim when they were on sale last spring...one word: yummy

2. BDG Oversized Sweater at Urban Outfitters
Cable Knit sweaters are back in a big way and it is so difficult to find one that isn't crazy expensive. I love luxury, but I'm not fixing to throw down a couple of hundred dollars on a sweater I'm going to wear when I'm looking shambly. This sweater is a perfect substitute. Great to wear over a t-shirt with leggings (oh hello #1), it's perfect to wear to class

3. Waffle Circle Scarf at J.Crew
Oh c'mon...do I really need a reason for this yummy thing?

4. VS Sport Headbands
Typically I'm a huge fan of Lululemon headbands but I'm really not feeling the color selection this season. VS Sport headbands are a wonderful substitute. There colors + doing just what I need= Perfection

5. REI Tech Compatible Gloves
Okay every girl in the cold needs these. Most people have a touch screen something (iPhone, iPad, Kindle whatever) and the hassle of taking your gloves off for a quick selfie or switching pages makes these gloves the best. Staying warm and staying in the loop? Win-win

6. Swivel Stick by Palmer's Cocoa Butter
I've seriously saved the best for last. This stuff looks like a glue stick, smells like cocoa and feels like the best moisturizer in the world. I use this for dry spots on my nose, my perpetually dry lips and even dry elbows. This is seriously the best stuff especially during harsh, dry, winter weather.

So there it is, my top 6 winter essentials. Everything you might need (other than a warm coat) to brave the elements, but I would just prefer to stay in bed all the same.



California Dreamin'

Okay so in case you aren't living through it or have seen it in the news, the Northeast is straight up frigid right now. Like record lows and all that mess (not going to lie, I hate cold weather) so this seems like the perfect time to book my spring break trip. 
California anyone? A little trip to the desert? Pool? Hiking?

I so cannot wait to get to warm weather--have y'all figured out your spring break plans yet?

My Someday Home

Like most girls my age, I'm low-key in love with Pinterest. Organizing + Planning for the future= perfect for a Type A girl like me. One thing I really love is looking at homes and rooms, hoping that someday, something like that could be mine. Call it a "Someday Home", "A Dream Home" or a wish, it's still just nice to think about, especially when I'm sitting in my tiny dorm room in the sorority house, wishing for a double bed and a private bathroom. 
Here are some of my recent faves

...just perfect...

Wouldn't you just love to curl up
in that nook and read all day?

Love those wood floors!

I just love the bright colors!

All of these images can be found on my Pinterest. I definitely need to figure out my style, but I still have a long time until I have a place of my own.


The Importance of Giving (Politically)

Okay, I just gotta tell you something. You need to be donating to a political cause.
At the end of the month, after bills, food, gas, and typically a splurge or two (I'm still trying to figure out how to be fiscally responsible), there usually isn't a ton left over. I know I'm not alone in this phenomenon, but regardless, everyone should be giving politically; either to a Political Action Committee (PAC or Super-PAC) or a committee (Republican National Committee or Democratic National Committee), or a candidate. 

Everyone talks about how money makes the world go round, and in politics, it's the same. The party/candidate/ group with the most funds has an extreme advantage of the competitor. Money makes or breaks campaigns and it makes or breaks legislation. I know this isn't what the Founding Fathers might have hoped for, but it is the law of the land now.

But what about you? Why should you be donating politically?

You can impact a campaign or organization when they need you most. Some may argue that voting day is when they need you most, but what happens if the group or candidate doesn't get on the ballot due to lack of funds? Exactly.

It doesn't have to be a ton of money. $5, $10, $15 dollars is all it has to be if that's all you can afford. Political giving is all about the mob mentality, especially when it comes to the big donors. No one likes betting on a loser, and your monetary backing of a group, interest, candidate, shows other donors they should donate too.

Giving politically is different than giving to a local charity, in the fact that you benefit. Giving to a party, interest, PAC whatever that you believe in can benefit your live, work or family in the future. If the environment is important, donate to a candidate who advocates for the environment or a politically active environmental group. Do you think taxes are too damn high? Give to a candidate with a track record of tax cuts. When you give to campaigns or groups, you are controlling democracy

Whether you are giving locally, state-wide, or nationally, just plan on giving; the earlier the better!

2014 is here and 2016 will be here before we know it

Have you ever donated to a political organization or campaign before?
Why or why not?


January Desktop

So January always seems like a time to get organized and what's an easier way to start than with cleaning up your desktop? I just did it after creating this background image for y'all and let me just say, I already feel relaxed for this upcoming semester.

Here is a link so you too can have this background! Just download and choose to "center" it under system preferences with a white background. Voila! Instant stress relief

Greek Week: Social Media--Clean it Up

Typically my Greek Week series is just a week long, but I think this is a topic that really can't be ignored; social media and it's importance in Recruitment.This applies mostly to girls who are senior in High School who think they will go through recruitment in Summer/Fall of 2014. Despite that, I think everyone can learn a little about being discreet online.

Sorority Greek Week: Social Media Edition

Girls, as soon as you commit to a school, deposit the check, get the sweatshirt, put your social media accounts on private. I cannot stress this enough. If they weren't on private during the college process (and it's beyond me why everyones accounts are private all the time) then turn it on private now. 

I cannot tell you how many times I have heard of (and experienced) potential new members being cut if they are a "standards risk". I am all in favor of having a fun summer before college (whatever you consider that to be) but it doesn't mean you should be sharing it with the world. You will be a very different person in college than you will be in person. Why not start your college experience with a truly blank slate.

If you are rushing a sorority, applying to college, getting a job...whatever, there should be no signs of any illegal activity throughout your social media presence. No vines, instas, tweets, etc of anything incriminating...that isn't just  being safe; it's being smart.

Each one of you has something amazing to offer to any sorority that you accept a bid from, but your words and connections during the recruitment process should be the only thing speaking for you; not your online life

Do not accept friend requests, twitter follows, etc from actives of a sorority if you are a PNM. Really, I know it's flattering but it's just plain creepy and well, it's weird. Imagine if the Dean of Admissions friended you when you put in your application. A) it's weird B)What if you don't go or get into that school #awkward

Same goes for requests from older girls. It's against Panhellenic rules, they can get in trouble and you could be involved, so just treat those requests like a UFO. You don't need to deny them (they could eventually be your sisters), but just leave them in FB Purgatory until you can figure out what to do with them.

So in short, keep your online identity private and only accept requests from people you actually know. I know this can seem a little obvious but everyone needs reminders from time to time.

As usual, I'm always available if y'all have recruitment or sorority questions.
Have a wonderful day!


Introducing My 100 in 1001!

I've seen these todo lists, 100 thing in 1001 days, and I thought well why not try something like that starting in 2014. My list has a variety of different things to try ranging from "play with a puppy" to "fall in love" and everything in between. 

My start date: Today (January 4th 2014)
My end date: October 1st 2016 (that seems like ages away)
So without further ado, here is my 100 in 1001

  1. Come up with 101 things to do (1/4/2014)
  2. Inspire someone else to do the same
  3. Go 21 days without picking my nails
  4. Get a Writing focused internship summer of 2014
  5. Complete the Blogilates 12 week workout challenge
  6. Eat a salad once a day for 21 days
  7. Drink 5 bottles of water for 21 days
  8. Travel to a new country
  9. Travel to a new state
  10. Whiten my teeth
  11. Floss everyday for 21 days
  12. Donate blood
  13. Learn blood type
  14. Don't take out money from savings for 2 months
  15. Make photo book of Study Abroad from Artifact Uprising
  16. Buy a piece of art or photography
  17. Watch 10 TED talks
  18. Complete Duolingos in German and Spanish
  19. Attend 3 concerts
  20. Complete more than 10 community service hours
  21. Try a Spin class
  22. Watch the sunrise with someone
  23. Only eat in the dining hall for a week
  24. Clean out my school email
  25. Visit 10 museums
  26. Make my bed for 1 week straight
  27. Make and give out 10 homeless helper bags
  28. Keep my desk clutter free for 1 week
  29. Run a mile without stopping
  30. Go on a hike
  31. Clean out closet at home and at school
  32. Attend an open-mic night
  33. Knit something
  34. Leave an 100% tip
  35. Complete 5 Barre workouts
  36. Learn to French Braid
  37. Comment on 1 blog every day for 1 month
  38. Talk/Text/Email my grandma at least once a month for a year
  39. Learn how to play chess
  40. Wear sunscreen every day for a month
  41. Go on a date
  42. Go without Diet Coke or Redbull for 2 weeks
  43. See a movie at the drive-in
  44. Send my mom and dad flowers (or a gift) at work
  45. Go to a sports event for a pro-team or a college team other than my own
  46. Figure out if I wanna go to Law school or Grad school or neither
  47. Take a cooking class
  48. Write a guest post for another blog
  49. Try and blog 5 pinterest recipes
  50. Try an unusual/trendy workout class
  51. Do a giveaway on the blog
  52. Watch The West Wing
  53. Talk to a stranger
  54. Say yes to 5 things I typically wouldn't say yes to
  55. Take the GRE/LSAT
  56. Read 30 books in a year
  57. Have my photo taken for the blog
  58. Attend a networking event
  59. Reach out to 10 people on PPS twitter
  60. Figure out my blogging routine
  61. Read a book about blogging (doesn't count for the 30)
  62. Try Intermittent Fasting for a week
  63. Attend a lecture/speaker event
  64. Try a new restaurant in both TX and NJ
  65. Go on a juice cleanse
  66. Blog at least 75% of the things accomplished from this list
  67. Get a Birthday calendar and write friend's names down
  68. Turn 21!
  69. Join the Junior League
  70. Buy a bottle of Champagne on my 21st to save for my first promotion
  71. Get 200 followers on Tumblr (Sometime in February)
  72. Open a cookbook to a random page and COOK!
  73. See a show at the MET
  74. Donate books I don't read anymore
  75. Write down my favorite places and memories of Study Abroad
  76. Find a church I actually like
  77. Go to the zoo
  78. Don't complain about winter weather for 1 month
  79. Make a gingerbread house
  80. Wear my Jimmy Choos
  81. Write a letter to myself to open in 10 years
  82. Donate 10 dollars for every task not completed
  83. Give up carbs for week
  84. Go to bed at 11pm every day for a week
  85. Wake up at 6am every day for a week
  86. Get an emergency car kit
  87. Join a "Young Patron's" group at a museum
  88. Get a flu shot
  89. Convince parents to get a family portrait taken
  90. Keep a jar with great moments of the year to be read on the next NYE
  91. Surprise 5 friends with homemade treats
  92. Go on an informational interview
  93. Find a mentor
  94. Get my first "real" job
  95. Play with a puppy
  96. Figure out how to do my hair in an "everyday yet professional" style
  97. Order the bar's house drink at 10 different bars
  98. Fall in love
  99. Graduate
  100. Move into my first place

Do you have a 100 in 1001 list? What's something you want to do?