Snow? No Thanks.

Well, it has officially happened. The first real heavy snows of the 2013 school year here a Northwest Missouri State University. Yes, it is pretty to look at and it does indicate we are closer to Christmas break and all that jazz, but it doesn’t mean I have to like it. That’s right, I said it. I hate snow! And let me explain why.

First, for there to be snow it means it must be cold outside, obviously, but I hate the cold. I don’t enjoy the freezing but also burning sensation you get on your face and or hands when the harsh cold wind hits you. I hate having to wear 6 layers of clothes just to keep warm outside only to sweat to death in class. Also, having to warm up my car while my leather seats frostbites my butt cheeks. None of this is pleasing and to those of you who enjoy it are crazy.

Second, I hate driving in snow. Not only can it be dangerous but it such an inconvenience! As a college student who lives on campus my car will sometimes stay parked in the same spot all week until I go out on the weekends. So, when it snows and out, oh-so lovely “snow- pusher” guys clear out the parking lot they have a bad habit of piling up the snow behind your cars. I’m sorry but little car cannot get out of its parking spot with a 4 foot wall of piled up snow behind it. This then leads to the struggle of knocking the snow not only off your car but from behind and hoping and praying you can get your car out. Once you get your car out and on the go, it is dangerous because so many people have accidents in this kind of weather. From ice, and sliding, it scary for students who have to drive hours away to go home in these terrible conditions.

And the last reason I hate snow is because it makes almost everyone anti-social. You’re probably wondering how snow effects peoples social lives right? Well, let me tell you. I am not the only person on this planet who feels this way, so for those people, like myself, who do not appreciate the cold season, we tend to just stay inside where it is warm and safe. It also means that our friends are doing the same. This leads to boredom from being alone and an excessive amount of Netflix, twitter, and Pinterest. Not until the roads are completely cleared and the below freezing weather has stopped, will we go out into the sunlight.

These are my reasons for hating the snow and I know I’m not the only one. But I also know there are people who absolutely love the snow. So what are your reasons for either hating the snow or loving it?

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Reason for the Season

It’s December now and it’s the time where all the crazy holiday spirit that has been forced to be bottled up until Thanksgiving Day was over, has now thrown up everywhere I turn. The Christmas lights, garland, Christmas trees with obnoxious ornaments, Christmas movies, kids asking for gifts that they don’t really need, everyone always being in a freakishly cheery mood and they never let you forget that Santa is on his way. Last but not least, it is the time of the year for all the awful Christmas music. Have you noticed that I might possibly just hate Christmas? If you did, well nothing gets past you. Yes, I hate all of this stuff. It is pointless and annoying. I do have a justified reason behind my feelings however. I am not just acting this way to be the rebel scrooge. I hate Christmas because people lose sight of the real and true reason for the season.

Growing up my family and I always celebrated Christmas was Jesus’s Birthday. My sister and I would watch cartoons about the day he was born and we were even in plays with our church where I got to play Mary and my sister was an angel. This aspect has always been a part of my family’s tradition. It wasn’t until I got older did I realize that not everyone celebrated Christmas for those reasons. They celebrate because they get a bunch of presents, a lot of food, and get to put up gaudy decorations. You always hear people tell you “Merry Xmas” or “Happy Holidays” but why is nothing ever said about Jesus? Yes, I do realize there are religious reasoning’s as to how it could offend people, but they don’t have to celebrate Christmas if it does. The true meaning of Christmas is to celebrate the birth of the man who saved our lives by giving to people who need and opening your hearts to strangers.  It’s not about the expensive presents or the decorations.

With that said, I would like to clarify, that yes, I do hate Christmas, but that does not mean I want everyone else to hate it also. I still celebrate with my family but I also make sure my family practices what I preach. Every year my immediate and sometimes distant family adopts a needy family for Christmas. We usually get them assigned a month or two in advance to Christmas so we have enough time to gather supplies for them. The family provides us with a list of things they would appreciate getting for Christmas. Now before I tell you what they ask for, take a second and think about what is on your Christmas list. Nike clothing, the new gold iPhone, diamonds, and Starbucks gift cards maybe? Well the Christmas list we receive consist of items like a bedframe so they don’t have to sleep with their mattresses on the floor, hand-me-downs because they can’t afford to buy warm clothes or coats for the winter, and the thing that breaks my heart the most, any possible food for the mother so she can provide a Christmas dinner for her kids.

People take for granted what they have in life and they don’t see how lucky they truly are until they see someone less fortunate than them. It happened to me, but instead of just sitting and feeling sorry for those people, I decided to do something about it. By spreading the Christmas spirit to people who could really use all the uplifting possible. This is the real reason for the season. Serving to others before you serve yourself. After reading this, and you wish to help unfortunate families, go to the local church, good will, or Walmart, and they usually have some way you can help.

Finals Are Here

Well ladies and Gentlemen it’s that time of year again. The time where college students are stressing, studying, and doing all they can to raise their grades in the class. You guessed it, it’s Finals Week. It’s the only time of the semester where a majority of student actually tries to do extremely well on a test, mostly because this test can make or break your grade in the class. From personal experience I know that some student are that one or two percentage difference of passing the class with a decent grade so they try even harder on their finals than they would any other test to assure they get that good grade. This usually involves a lot of studying and late night cramming.

Some study tips I would suggest some students to use would be to make sure you study a full week in advance and only study a small portion at a time. That way you are not worried about cramming all the material in one day. For example, a week before your first final study the first section, whether it’ll be vocab or essays, then on the next day advance to the next section and after that review the previous section. I know this works for me because I am continually going back over the information.

Don’t forget to take breaks in-between studying as well! Without breaks you are more likely to forget something. I always study for an hour and a half and then take a 30 minute break by watching tv or doing something of that nature. Then go back to studying. Also, another great tip is to make sure you eat good meals. Don’t just snack all the time because you think you are too busy to eat. During one of your study breaks go grab a bite to eat to refresh your brain. Don’t just eat chips or snack foods either, make sure they are full meals.

These are just some of the steps I take while studying for finals. What steps or studying habits do you have that help you have a more successful testing day?

Football

If you are a college student at a university or just a college sports fan, you understand how important football is to a school. The school I go to cherishes football and I love to go and watch the games. But, Northwest isn’t my favorite football team. Growing up my mom was born an Auburn fan. When she married my dad he became an Alabama fan to piss her off. But as the years went on he continued to follow Bama. When I was younger my mom always tried to get me to be an Auburn fan with her since I am the only sibling that actually enjoys the sport. She would always buy me auburn clothes and accessories. But I secretly hated it because I think Orange and Navy are the ugliest combination of colors.

On game days I would sit with my parents and watch auburn play and then sit with my dad and watch Bama play. I ended up enjoying the Bama games more. So when I switched teams my mom was pretty upset but it’s okay, we worked it out. Now, every Saturday game they play, I am sitting in front of the TV with my dad cheering on Crimson Tide. Most people think I switched teams because Bama won more games. I mean, yeah that’s nice, but I always love the way Bama carries themselves. They are thankful for their wins and I respect the way Coach Saban coaches.

Being from Missouri, I get a lot of questions of why I am not a Missouri or Nebraska fan, well honestly, because I wasn’t raised around people who praised either of those teams. I never really followed them until this year that’s only because I’ve met people who are die-hard fans. Yes, the teams are good, but I’ll stick to my Crimson Tide. I had a girl ask me the other day, “who my favorite college team is?” When I replied “Alabama,” she said, “Doesn’t it get boring winning all the time.” And to that I said, “Nope, not at all.” Who is your favorite college football team?

Hammer Time

As the end of the semester is approaching us, it is time when professors lay on the work load. For example, just in one week I have two projects due, three papers, and four exams. Goodbye social life, hello library. The worst part for me is time management. The work that is due to soonest I try to get done first, but then there are other things that take a long time to do so I can’t put them off either, which leads to me being stuck at a computer typing away for 5 hours at a time. My brain can only handle so much information that I sometimes get confused on what I’m supposed to be doing for the project I’m working on because I’m trying to plan 50 other things for other classes as well. It’s stressing me out and I don’t even have time to go shoot hoops, which is my stress-reliever.

I try to take at least 3-4 hours out of my day to sit down and intensely work on homework but it doesn’t seem to be enough time but I’m so busy with work and other things that I don’t know how to add more time to work on things. I don’t understand how people can juggle school, work, sororities, or other extra-curricular activities. School is hard enough as it is. I keep reminding myself to take deep breathes and that everything will work out but as of right now, I’m stressing to the max! How do you guys manage your work load?

Privacy

In college it is really hard to have privacy, especially if you live in the dorms and have a roommate. I am someone who loves my privacy and I would prefer to be alone than around people all the time. Last year  as a freshman, was the first year I had to live with someone and share a room with them. It was a big change for me and I absolutely hated it at first. I couldn’t just take naps whenever I wanted, I had to leave my room and go to the library if I had homework, and most of all I had to change in front of a stranger! It took me a while to get used to having to share everything but eventually I got used to it and more comfortable. It was still a little awkward and frustrating at times, especially when I was doing homework or sleeping and my roommate would come in and be really loud or turn on every light. Also, I am someone who doesn’t really like to talk to people about my problems, and my roommate was always asking me about my personal life. Not that I didn’t like her, she was just nosy.

This year I still live in the dorms but I don’t have a roommate and I absolutely love it. I get to do whatever I want, whenever I want. I get to stay in my room and do my homework, I can change freely without worrying when someone will walk in, and I can sleep whenever I want. I have my privacy without anyone invading it. The only downfall is that I sometimes get lonely. I’m not really friends with people in my hall, and all the friends I have from last year live off campus. So I gained my privacy but lost a social life. Maybe I’ll find a happy-medium one day

Thanksgiving Change

Thanksgiving break is right around the corner. Usually my immediate family comes together and we spend Thanksgiving Day together. But the days surrounding my sister and I are off with our friends. That’s just always how it’s been. It wasn’t until last year did I realize some families take this holiday more seriously. She invited me over to her house once I was done spending time with my family, and once I got there I could already see the difference. It wasn’t just her immediate family there but it was her whole family, cousins, aunts and uncles, grandparents, everyone. They were playing games and sitting around and visiting.

In my family we usually go see my dad’s mom a few days before or after thanksgiving. Since my mom’s family lives in Texas we don’t get to spend holidays with them and my dad’s side of the family always has to pick fights when we choose one grandparent over the other considering my dad’s parents are divorced so we choose to see each one a few days before and a few days after and then just spend thanksgiving alone at our house.

My friend had both set of grandparents from either side of the family there and all her aunts and uncles. This amazed me because I didn’t know a family could get along so well. And from this experience I decided to change the way we did Thanksgiving in my family. Now, I know that there is no way all of my family can get together and get along so seeing the grandparents before and after Thanksgiving is going to be the same. However, instead of us just having Thanksgiving at our house, I decided we should take a family trip. So, this year for Thanksgiving my family and I are going to Springfield, MO, and we’re staying in a hotel and are going to go site-seeing, and just spend time with each other. What are your plans for Thanksgiving Day?

thanksgiving

Was There Anything I Could Have Said or Done?

“And why would you leave the stage in the middle of a song.” I don’t know how many people know this song but it is called Why by Rascal Flatts. This song is a very touching song about someone who died at a young age. Now, I’ve never been much of a Rascal Flatts fan but this song hit a spot in my heart when I heard it. I’ve had a few people in my life that have passed away at an early age. Whether it was from accidents, health conditions, or suicide, I can relate each one of them to this song.

The song says “Now here we are gathered in our little hometown, This can’t be the way you meant to draw a crowd.” This line is one of the most important lines in the song to me because I am from a small town and I had a friend that always felt invisible. They felt as if no one in the town knew who they were or even cared enough to try. My friend committed suicide the summer of my junior year and at the service half the town showed up. I guess they didn’t realize how many people did care about them and it was sad that a funeral had to prove it.

This song touches my heart in so many ways it’s unbelievable. What songs can you relate too?

Writer’s Block

The thing I hate the most about college this year is the papers I have to write for classes such as my history class. This year I am in Historical Survey and let’s just say it is not my strong subject. When I know I am not going to be any good in a class my motivation level goes down the drain. And right now is not a good time to have no motivation in this class.

We got an assignment to write a paper over the topic we’ve been learning about. I understand the directions and she has already given the class the sources to use in the paper. Plus the paper only needs to be 2-3 pages long. Seems easy right? Well, that’s my problem. I feel since this assignment is so easy but yet worth a lot of points, I feel as if I’m not doing it right, which makes me not want to do it at all. However, I need to pass this class. So how do you find the motivation to do something you already know you’re going to fail at? Most people would just say push through it and just get it done. But you see, my “just get it done” will result in a D on the paper which I can’t afford to get. My full attention is required for this assignment but it almost seems impossible.

Have A Big Heart

In todays’ world you always hear about a lot of the bad things that happen, shootings, robberies, bullying, etc. Rarely do you ever hear about the good things people do. Today I was browsing on Facebook and I saw this video that someone had shared about a middle school football team. Being the crazed football fan that I am I clicked on it and watched the video. The video was about how this middle school team that had a player with a learning disability. He never got to actually play because of his disability however. So the team decided to do something about that. They went behind their coaches back and set up a play to get a close to the end zone as possible without actually going in. Then they would get the player with the disability in the game and protect him as he took the ball the few feet into the end zone for his first touchdown ever.  Here is the link to the video if you want to watch it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Ejh_hb15Fc

It is moments and acts like this that remind me that our society is not filled with just evil. There are so many good people out there doing nice things for others and they aren’t getting recognized for it. People to help the homeless, or the community, or just a stranger on the sidewalk, they aren’t doing these things to get recognition for anything, they do it because it’s the right thing to do.

Yesterday walking across campus in the rain I saw another act of kindness. There was a girl who was on crutches trying to get to class as fast as she could in the pouring rain. A young man with an umbrella came up behind her and held his umbrella above her to get her dry and then carried her back pack for her. Small things like these can mean so much. Have you done something nice for someone today?