Saturday, March 9, 2013

dream big! seriously though... BIG

Okay- something has been bothering me quite a lot lately. As I am a college student, I am surrounded by thousands of nervous young people who are franticly trying to decide what to do about getting married, where to continue school, and what to do for a career. I've heard a lot of garbage amongst these desperate conversations. I've heard things like "I probably won't make it into the program", "he's/she's out of my league", "too much school", and worst of all, "I don't think I'm good enough/smart enough for [fill in boy/girl/major/job here]". Um, excuse me! This has been quite irksome to me. I feel like people these days think too much about the 'practicality' of everything. When deciding what to major in and what they want to do with their lives, people are thinking too much about money and about job outlook (though, those things are extremely important) and they're completely forgetting about the fact that they better enjoy whatever they choose. Because, I'm sorry if this is news to you, you're going to be doing it for the rest of your life buddy. Choose something you love! Do you want to work at a zoo and care for the baby monkeys? Do it. Want to be president of the United States? Do it. Med School? Go for it! If choosing the money-smart career and sitting behind a desk crunching numbers for the rest of your life sounds a tad awful, don't feel guilty. Do what you want to and choose to do something that you love! There's a cheesy quote that I've always loved that goes something like this: "Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars". I hope that everyone will loosen up a little bit and just learn to chase their dreams (the big ones).

Monday, March 4, 2013

Reduce. Reuse. Recycle!

People have waited in line for over twelve hours to get a ticket into the midnight showing of Harry Potter (myself included), they've camped outside Apple stores to ensure getting their hands on the newest iPhone, and full-grown men have gotten into fist-fights over the last 72 inch flat-screen TV on Black Friday. All of us have seen sights like these and most of us have been a part of them at one time or another. Let's all try and transfer some of that crazed enthusiasm, or at least the worry that our desired products are going to run out , to more important and more useful things.What if we were that passionate about making sure we had our fair share of clean air to breathe every day? Or if we got that excited about making sure we had the hottest new tree planted in our yards every spring instead of keeping up on the hottest clothing styles? What if people got in fist-fights (though, we should avoid fist-fights all together) over trying to be the first to recycle their soda pop cans rather than over the new Batman DVD or Wii console at Wal-mart? Think of the change that could take place! 

For those who are overwhelmed by the task of recycling or don't know where to begin, here are some small steps you can take now to start making your home and your lifestyle green!
  1. Use an inexpensive and reusable water bottle instead of buying disposable ones. I like this one. Maybe consider a reusable morning coffee cup. Also, watch this short video called The Story of a Water Bottle.
  2. Stop using the plastic bags from the grocery store. Order reusable bags or even make your own from recycled t-shirts!
  3. Look for "made from recycled materials" on all the products that you regularly buy (i.e. tissues, paper towels, and clothing)
  4. Change your light bulbs to CFLs which are more energy efficient. 
  5. Hang-dry your laundry.
  6. Use cloth napkins, cloths, and towels instead of paper.
  7. Save all junk-mail and newspapers in a plastic bin and make a weekly or monthly run to your local recycling center. You can find one here.
  8. Turn off the lights! Only use lights when you need them and always remember to flip them off when you leave a room.
  9. When washing your hands/face or brushing your teeth, turn the water off while you do the scrubbing and then turn it back on just to rinse. 
  10. Whenever you can, walk or ride your bike. If driving is necessary, try to carpool and combine all of your errands into one trip.