With the end of the year coming to a close, I decided it was time to revisit the resolutions I set for myself at the end of 2018. Here is a quick report of how I did:
-Write a book about my life. ✘ I actually started, but I never ended up finishing it. Maybe next year…
-Have fifty followers on WordPress. ✔ I was genuinely shocked at how quickly I surpassed fifty. It was a goal for the entire year, but the number went over fifty within the first month of writing this. In total, I currently have 208 followers.
-Have 100 followers on my Diplomat’s Digest Instagram page. ✔ I reached 100 in November!
-Dye my hair a new color; maybe teal again! ✔ I did that! I got my hair dyed teal in mid March, and I absolutely love it. Right now, it’s blonde.
-Get my driver’s license. ✘ Nope, not this year, but definitely the next!
-Host a collaboration on my blog. ✔ Check! Got that done in January, actually. As of right now, I have completed two collaborations for the entire year.
-Host a giveaway on my blog (!) ✘ Not quite yet, but hopefully soon!
-Figure out how to properly use wet-set foam rollers. ✘ I kind of cut off all my hair…
-Buy an authentic 1940s dress. ✘ Nope, I saved my money. See my last resolution 😉
-Learn how to knit something besides a scarf. ✔ Does a dish cloth count?
-Go to bed and wake up a little bit earlier every day. This could be tricky, as I am a notorious night owl… ✔ I surprisingly did this. I usually get into bed between 8pm-9pm, and I’m asleep before 10 if I take a unisom and a melatonin pill.
-Learn how to manage my money better. I struggle with this big time. Do you guys have any tips for managing money? ✔ I saved $1,000 over the summer, so I’d consider that successful finance management!
Looking back, I’m pretty happy with the progress I made on my resolutions this year! 7/12 certainly isn’t bad. I noticed while looking back at my list that many of these goals were materialistic based, and I’d like to change that going forward. For 2020, I’d like to focus more on personal milestones, such as maintaining my happiness and continuing to spread gratitude. My 2020 resolutions will be published on January 1, so keep your eyes out for that!
It’s been a while since I’ve done a tag, but this one seemed like a perfect choice for me. I love writing, of course, and I especially love writing about my own personal experiences. I was inspired to do this tag after I saw another blogger post hers, so thank you to The Deep Blue Day for introducing me to this tag! I’ll link her page below. She’s lovely, and I’m sure you’ll love checking out her page.
Anywho, let’s just jump right into it! Feel free to use this as a template for your own story time tag as well. The particular tag I am using was started by Kat Bouska (I think), so full credit goes to her.
Talk about a time you lied to a parent.
To be honest, my memory is not the best, so it actually took me quite a bit of sitting and pondering to come up with these answers. I also haven’t lived in a house with both my mom and dad since 2016, so I honestly don’t really remember what life was like before that.
Anyway, now that I’ve gotten my excuses out of the way, I’ll carry on and try to answer the questions.
So, a time I lied to my mom. This wasn’t completely a lie, but I definitely bent the truth in my favor. When I was in high school, I was dating a guy who was college-aged. He had a lot of friends who went to Northeastern University in Boston, so on Halloweekend of my junior year, he invited me to come with him party-hopping on Mission Hill. Obviously, my mom would never have let me out of the house if she knew that was the plan, so I sorta bent the truth and told her we were going to “visit some friends near Boston.” For the record, my mom was chill and never tracked my location or anything like that, so basically she had to take my word for everything.
From what I remember, we had a good time bouncing from house to house in Boston. I didn’t get drunk or anything like that, because I think I was taking Lexapro at that time. This was also a new, exciting relationship for me, so I was so enamored in love with this guy, he could have taken me to watch paint dry and I would have had a great time. Considering I don’t party at all in college, junior year of high school was essentially me being “crazy” and even then, I partied completely sober about three times. Ah yes, what a wild child I am.
That time you stole something.
So, I didn’t exactly steal this, but this is the story of the time I received a gift that was stolen. When I was in middle school, I was friends with this girl (we’ll give her a fake name and call her Jessica), who had two older sisters and lived in my hometown. One day, I was at “Jessica’s” house and she invited me up to the top floor of her house. Then, she pulled out one of those giant plastic bins you use for storing Christmas decorations and stuff, except this one was literally full to the brim with brand-new drugstore makeup. Apparently, her older sister had been intermittently stealing makeup from CVS over the past several months, until she had literally amassed this giant collection of makeup. When her parents found out, instead of telling anybody or making her get rid of it, they just packed it all into the attic and apparently just tried to pretend it never happened. Being thirteen or so, I definitely didn’t say no when she offered me some of the makeup. I don’t remember exactly what she gave me, but I definitely walked away with 5-6 things. And yes, I did feel guilty about it for months afterwards. I wonder what happened to that giant bin of makeup.
A confrontation you had with a teacher.
I was a pretty quiet, agreeable student growing up. I didn’t get in trouble a lot, but there were a couple times I did/said impulsive things (ADHD problems, anyone?) and got reprimanded for my behavior. When I was in fifth grade I wrote someone’s name on the wall of the bathroom and got in trouble for that. Another time, I got busted for doing mad libs with my friends in class instead of our math homework. For real though, those are the only times I did something “bad” in school and got caught. I’m pretty mundane.
The best gift ever!
This is one of my favorite stories to tell. When I was nine years old, I took a book out of my elementary school library called Book of Black Heroes: Great Women in the Struggle. I immediately fell in love with this book, which is a collection of short biographies about 80 historical black women who helped to pave a better future for equality in the United States. Every week, I would re-read the stories over and over again, until I had more or less memorized them all. I renewed this book for months and months, until I finally decided at the end of the school year that I didn’t want to give it back! Well, when my mom found out I was planning on stealing a book from my elementary school library, she went out and bought me my own copy for my tenth birthday. I still own the book, and even have it with me at college. Sometimes, I’ll bring it with me to class and take it out to read throughout the day.
A time you tricked a sibling.
See, I am the younger sibling, so in most cases growing up, all the tricking going on came from his part. That being said, we had a pretty good relationship when I was growing up, until we both hit middle school and my brother went through that “Ew My Little Sister is So Annoying” Phase. He still hasn’t really recovered; we aren’t close, and currently border somewhere on the line of “estranged.” This is just my way of saying I’m sorry, I don’t have an answer to this question.
Your boyfriend/girlfriend cheated!
I’ve been cheated on twice, but let me start off by saying that the guy I was talking about in the Mission Hill story wasn’t someone who cheated on me. No, these were two other guys, although one was just a summer fling and the other was a full-fledged relationship. To be honest, they aren’t really experiences I like to talk about. The worse time I was cheated on of the two came at a really vulnerable time in my life when I was struggling emotionally, and that terrible experience messed me up for several months afterwards. The other time was annoying, but not as emotionally traumatizing by any stretch of the imagination. I’m reluctant to even say more about it, because I really don’t want to pull it into relevance again and possibly attract negative attention from the people involved, but just know that it happened and it was pretty awful. It’s turned me into someone who has ZERO TOLERANCE for players and cheaters, which I guess is a good thing. I refuse to even be friends with someone who has cheated on a partner.
That time you broke up with a good friend.
Ooh, this is such a good story! Okay, so from around 4th grade to my second year of college, I was friends with this girl who we’ll call “Jen.” We were pretty tight from elementary school to about ninth grade, until my parent’s divorce slightly messed me up and our friendship was pretty on-and-off after that. The real kicker, and the end of everything, came around last May. To give you some backstory “Jen” suffers from some of her own traumas and issues, which may contribute to some of her insufferable behaviors. She is a very righteous, self-centered person who constantly feels the need to one-up other peoples’ traumas, and that got old after a while. She was also a super duper crunchy hippie, and literally believed that anybody who wasn’t a zero-waste raw vegan was a heartless devil. The last straw came when she became angry at me for eating eggs and buying a new pair of shoes, because apparently eggs will give me cancer and buying shoes makes me a spineless slave to consumerism. She consistently reinstates she “didn’t give a shit” what I was up to, yet she still felt the need to throw in her two cents every time I did something she didn’t agree with and tell me how awful I was compared to her, as she was clearly a sterling citizen. Interesting.
A time you embarrassed yourself playing sports.
I’ve actually never played on a sports team, even when I was really little. I’ve never really been a team player in anything that I do. However, my brother used to do karate, so one day I went with him to practice to see if I would enjoy doing it, too. I lasted about ten minutes out on the mat before I started crying and made my mom come get me. It wasn’t super embarrassing because I was a very young child, and looking back, I still laugh about that day. If anything, I’m more embarrassed for my brother!
A story about how you got your pet.
My first real pet was a dog named Max, and I loved him enormously. Unfortunately, when he was around four years old, he developed some sort of an infection or disease in his intestines that killed him almost instantly. He was fine that morning, but by that night, we were saying goodbye to him at the veterinary hospital, and he died soon after.
So obviously, that was very sad. He died in the fall of 2011, and by the end of the year, my family and I were so distraught about not having a pet in the household anymore, we decided to adopt another dog as soon as possible. And that’s how we ended up getting Duke in the February of 2012! I’ll never forget holding him in my lap on the car ride home; he was so small and chunky. And now, he’s still chunky, but he’s half my size now and still thinks he’s a lap dog. While it was obviously tragic to lose Max so young, I am still so happy we were able to add Duke to our family. Duke isn’t the most well-behaved dog I know, but he has a heart of gold and he’s a good boy to me.
A holiday catastrophe.
I don’t remember exactly what year this was, but I was probably around five or six years old. I don’t really remember much about this day, but apparently on Christmas I woke up horribly sick with a stomach bug and could not celebrate at all for the entire day. From what my mom has told me, I spent pretty much the entire day puking and sleeping! To be honest, I kind of had a habit of getting sick on holidays. I’m not quite sure why, but I specifically remember there were about 3 or 4 Christmases and Halloweens growing up during which I was sick as a dog and couldn’t celebrate. It must just be bad luck on my part. The good news is, I’ve been in pretty good health for the last few holidays, and I’m hoping it stays that way..
That time you tried out for something.
When I was in seventh grade, I tried out for my school’s audition-only a capella group. I was already in the chorus, which anyone could join, but I really wanted to see if I was good enough to be in the “elite” circle. I say “elite” with quotations because I went to tiny, unimpressive public school, where being in an a capella group wasn’t really the biggest deal on the planet. Anyway, I’ve been singing for most of my life, so I decided to give the audition a try. I remember I sang “Candle in the Wind” by Elton John, and I was literally stunned when I found out I got into the group a week or so later. It really boosted my confidence knowing I had a strength in something! I auditioned for the group every subsequent year, and proudly graduated a member of The Rhythmics in my senior year of high school. It’s now a fun fact I can tell people that I sang in an a capella group for about seven years straight. If you deep-dive hard enough, you can find a couple videos of me on YouTube.
Something that happened while camping.
This story actually coincides with the story about “Jen”, because she is the friend who took me camping. For context, I do not come from a camping family, so this one time I camped with “Jen” was an isolated instance when I was thirteen or so. The plan was for me to camp with her, her family, and some of our mutual friends for seven days near North Conway. I didn’t so much mind the lack of showers and tent sleeping (it was not pleasant, but I could manage); no, the worst part was that my introverted ass was CONSTANTLY surrounded by people! I couldn’t even get through the seven days, so my parents had to come pick me up after about the five day mark. I have to say, I’m impressed I even lasted that long.
I remember while we were camping, the other kids and I decided to go rafting down the river in these big donut-shaped tubes we rented. The plan was to float down the river and stop at an island of sand a little way’s down, but for whatever reason, we decided to just keep going. After a while, it was just us in our tubes going down the river with no one else around. We were completely alone and didn’t know where we were! Whenever I tell this story to other people, I always explain the scenery as the Poland Springs water bottle picture: just a river with trees on both sides. That’s essentially what it looked like.
The real kicker came when we noticed wolf spiders were floating around in the water, and I swear, we SUBMARINED our asses out of that lake. I’ve never swam so fast in my life while screaming like a moron. We kind of ended up at the side of a highway, but the reality was, we weren’t too far from our camp and we were able to get back pretty safely. I think we might have even stopped at a bakery on the way. I haven’t gone camping again since.
A vacation mishap
I don’t have any super-dramatic vacation stories, but I’m pretty sure I had the flu when my class took a trip to Florida at the end of 8th grade. I was so sick and chilled to the bone, the hot Florida sun actually felt good on my skin (this is coming from someone who HATES summer with a passion). If I could go back in time and make it so I never went on that trip, I would. It was a very unpleasant experience for me. Also, Kim O’Brien called me a retard, which was very uncool of her.
The day that everything went wrong.
A day that everything went wrong was May 18, 2016. As I’ve mentioned before on my blog several times, I have PMDD, which is a hormonal disorder that centers around my menstrual cycle. Essentially, the days leading up to my period can be really hard for me, physically and emotionally, and I’m usually visibly upset or crying if something pushes me over the edge. Well, I wasn’t diagnosed with PMDD yet back in 2016, and on that day in May I was having a TERRIBLE time. Not only was I having a bad cycle, which meant I was already very emotional, my parents were also going through a divorce and I had just been rejected by someone I was really into. I essentially had a crying breakdown at school and my teachers were concerned that I was suicidal or something, even though I obviously wasn’t and I hadn’t even given any indication of that. I ended up being sent home from school and forced to go to a clinic for a “psychiatric evaluation”, which I was cleared from within ten minutes because I was totally fine. I think I was in and out of the clinic within an hour, if even that. However, that doctor did plant the seed that I had PMDD, so that’s one silver lining from that awful experience. There were a ton of other awful things going on- I had to miss my chorus concert because I legally wasn’t allowed back at the school until I was “cleared”, and my parents were actually mad at me for essentially having a mental breakdown. It was a bad day, but thankfully, my life is ten times better now, I’m estranged from half my family, and I know how to manage my PMDD. It all worked out in the end!
A time you were surprised!
Oof, this is an unpleasant example, but the most surprised I have EVER been was when I got dumped my senior year of high school. We’d only been dating for about five months, but I thought the relationship was going really well and it totally caught me off guard when he wrote me a letter in our shared journal breaking up with me. In fact, I was so surprised, I’m pretty sure I threw up in the parking lot as he was driving away. Anywho, I’ve since moved on with my life, and now I tend to be a bit more cynical and untrusting when things are going well with a romantic interest. Again, I’m sorry that was a pretty unhappy example, but it is the most notable story I could think of for this question.
Anywho, that was my story time tag! If you’re reading this, you’re tagged 😉
As someone who’s very interested in psychology, sociology, and culture, I’ve been fascinated with the Kardashian/Jenner clan since they rose to social media prominence. They’re one of the most famous families of all time, and arguably the most famous celebrity family. You can think whatever you want about them, and I have my opinions too, but I don’t think you can deny that there’s some talent there.
What is talent, anyway? How do we define it? In Hollywood especially, we usually think of singing, acting, and dancing as examples of celebrity talent. However, I’d like to argue that having incredible marketing skills and being social media savvy could also be considered a talent, such as with the Kardashian clan. How many of you can say that you’ve single handedly built an entire empire yourself based off your family name and your body? I sure can’t.
The point of what I’d like to say is this: you don’t have to like them, but I think we all owe the Kar-Jenners some credit. I personally don’t agree with everything they do, but I still view them as powerful female businesswomen in a male-dominated industry. Yes, their bodies and their sexuality play a large part in their brand, but they are in full control of their autonomy and choices. Nobody is telling Kim Kardashian she needs to pose nude for magazines- she’s doing it because she loves her curves and she wants to empower other women to feel the same. I can’t argue with that.
Anyway, back to the marketing thing. Let’s talk about Kylie Jenner for a minute. Do I think she’s a self-made woman? No- that’s a laughable claim to make, that Kylie Jenner could ever be considered “self-made.” Jeffree Star? Yes. Kylie Cosmetics? Not even close.
However, just because she’s not self-made doesn’t mean she isn’t a brilliant business owner. The launch of her self-owned makeup brand, Kylie Cosmetics, sold out within minutes on the first day of sales, causing a worldwide crash to the site. Since then, her business has completely taken off and gone on to incorporate other business endeavors, including Kylie Skin.
Now a mother to a one year-old baby while still maintaining her thriving business, Kylie is the true definition of a working woman. I’m not saying she didn’t start a step above everyone else, but she really took her privileged life and ran with it. She played a substantial role in turning her family name into a fashion empire, and a glamorous, although uncommon model for a woman in the workplace. Not all of us can be Kylie Jenner, but we can strive to have the womanly power she wields.
You have to remember that Kylie Jenner is barely 22 years old, and constantly being pummeled with hateful comments, slut-shaming tweets, and general scrutiny over every single decision she makes. I’m not saying we should go ahead and excuse every questionable thing the KarJenner clan does (for example, the detox tea advertisements have to stop), but I think we owe Kylie a hell of a lot more credit for not breaking under the social pressure. Not only has she kept her sanity and stayed relevant, she’s gone above and beyond what many young twenty-year olds are able to accomplish. Being a businesswoman is a talent. Women who work hard deserve recognition.
You know who else is quite literally working her ass off? Kim Kardashian West. Again, Kim’s name, her body, and her reputation is her brand. Not many people can say they’ve made a living off of those three factors exclusively, let alone a multi-million dollar empire.
Kim Kardashian West is a pioneer of social media influence and advertising. She’s absolutely fascinating to me, to put it short. Taking an extremely unforgiving circumstance, a leaked sex tape, and a subsequent thriving reality TV show, Kim has built herself a life of luxury and power. She is the owner and founder of KKW Beauty, her personal makeup line, and Skims, a line of solutionwear designed for women. While managing her businesses, she is also a social media icon, socialite, advocate, LAW STUDENT, and mother to four young children.
You don’t have to agree with Kim Kardashian selling herself for a greater profit. Personally, as a 39 year-old multi millionaire, I highly doubt Kim gives a shit what you think about her rise to success. I’m not going to gloss over the fact that the KarJenner clan, blinded by their privilege, occasionally make decisions that are insensitive and offensive to marginalized groups of people, and they deserve to be criticized for the public blunders they concoct. However, that doesn’t change the fact that they are still very good at what they do. And Kim Kardashian West? She has a very thick skin, and she’s eager to learn from her mistakes.
I truly believe that if this was a family of men instead of strong, powerful women, the Kardashian-Jenners would not face nearly as much public scrutiny as they currently do. When a man has a strong sense of self and a thriving self image, we call him a “boss” or a “leader.” But when a woman does it? Well, she’s a “slut” or a “bitch.” What if instead of talking about Kim Kardashian’s body all the time, we talked about her accomplishments to bettering the world? What if we talked about the legal efforts she has partaken in to free women from prison, to undermine an ambitious project of completely revamping the justice system? The sad reality is, it’s a lot easier for us to criticize her than give her credit for the amazing things she has done.
Kris Jenner? Ugh, an icon. A MASTERMIND. You may think of her as a money-hungry cold puppet master, but I think of her as an extremely talented entertainment producer, television personality, and businesswoman. You know what they say: The devil works hard, but Kris Jenner works harder.
I could continue to go on and on about all of the KarJenner women and how they’ve been instrumental in the shaping of social media marketing, but I’ll cap it at Kim and Kylie today. Like I said, you don’t have to like them or agree with everything they do (I don’t), but I think it’s an extremely underdeveloped, backwards way of thinking to claim they have no “talent.” The world is changing, the internet is a giant pool of chaos, and the modern notion of a “talented female” is not what it used to be. E! True Hollywood recently put out a really informative short documentary about Kim Kardashian, and I highly recommend it to anyone else who is fascinated by the KarJenner clan.
So what’s next for the Kardashian-Jenners? A brand-new marketing endeavor? Presidency? I guess we’ll just have to watch and find out.
This could very well be one of those writing projects that starts out as a blog post and ends up being a ten-page research paper. Oh well, we’ll see what happens.
Last week, I posted an article all about the relationship between anxiety and animals. For me personally, having a family dog has been one of the biggest joys in my life. It’s like having a younger sibling, except we don’t speak the same language and we’re somehow best friends. Being away from him at school is difficult, especially since he helps me with my anxiety so much.
I know from speaking to my friends that a lot of college students feel the same way- we all miss our pets! Even if you’re not necessarily struggling with anxiety or depression, having an animal to bond with can help improve your mood and overall stress levels. Having a dog, for example, also requires you to get exercise due to the frequent walks your dog will need.
Moving on to the point of this article- what if college campuses teamed up with animal shelters? Imagine having an animal shelter on your college campus that you could volunteer to walk dogs for, or hang out in the cat room to relieve some of your stress? Sounds pretty awesome to me. Not only do you get more exercise and stress-relief from being around animals, but the animals themselves also receive constant love and affection. And then, if you especially bond with an animal while you’re at school, you could adopt them after you graduate! I can imagine the adoption rates for having a shelter on a college campus would be significantly higher than average.
Obviously, this is volunteer work and not a job, so I wouldn’t foresee students being paid for this type of an opportunity. It would be extremely cost effective, if you ask me, because most of the students doing the work are not earning an income from the volunteer work. It’s just a fun little hobby that students could do on the side, for the benefit of both their health and the animal’s health.
There is a huge amount of research that indicates the power between human-animal bonds. Spending time with animals can lower your blood pressure and help you to maintain your motivation, which is something I believe all students need a hefty boost in. Even people with physical disabilities can find relief in spending time with an animal- one study found that patients with fibromyalgia showed an improvement in pain and mood after engaging in animal therapy. Having an animal shelter on campus could also be really useful for a college that offers classes relevant to animal health or veterinary care- you would have an internship opportunity five minutes away from you!
I realize this logistically is not very possible or likely for any college to incorporate an animal shelter onto the campus, but it’s something that gives me joy to think about. It feels like a flexible, well-rounded idea to me that would bring in a lot of traffic and attention to the issue of abandoned shelter animals. That being said, bringing in staff to actually work at the shelter could be a financial problem, if your school doesn’t have tons of cash to give out for external projects.
I’m curious to see if this idea could ever work in practical application. What do you think? If you college had an animal shelter on site, would you utilize it for volunteer purposes? I can say without a doubt that a college animal shelter would probably become my new favorite spot.
By now, the climactic nature of this story has long passed, but it’s not old news. You may have originally heard about this story from Tea Spill, a YouTube channel covering beauty-community-related drama. She has a lot of great information about this story, so I highly recommend checking out her video! If you have not seen the video, allow me to give you a little bit of backstory about how this mess started.
First of all, what is Kickstarter? Kickstarter is a campaign platform that allows creators/artists to find backers and support, so that they can have the resources to make their dreams a reality. Backers can choose which projects they would like to contribute to, and in turn, the creators can reward their backers with gifts, perks, or other privileges once the project is fully funded and completed. It’s a great system, and many creators have had enormous success using this platform.
Unfortunately, not everyone has a great experience on Kickstarter- including the backers. Sometimes, if a project falls through, backers are left with a thinner wallet and no completed project. You would expect the project at fault to refund all of the money, but sadly, that’s not always what happens.
Before I get too ahead of myself, let me first explain what the Lisa Frank Kickstarter is (I will also include a link to the page, if you’d like to do more research yourself). This project was supposed to be a collaboration between indie makeup brand Glamour Dolls and iconic artist Lisa Frank, who many of you 90s babies will probably remember. In theory, I think a Lisa Frank makeup line is a creative and fantastic idea. If this project had been better executed, I truly believe it would have been a huge success.
Many other people seemed to agree with that notion, because the campaign to fund a Lisa Frank x Glamour Dolls makeup collection garnered over 5,935 backers and raised over $370,000. That’s right, $370,000 was raised by good-intentioned folks who loved the idea of this project, and of course, they were promised early access to the products before anyone else. Depending on how much you donated, you could get anything from a free digital background to the ENTIRE collection, so people were pretty stoked. The campaign was launched in February of 2017, and was set to be finished that September.
Well, September came and went. No products were received. Updates from the company became more and more sparse.
Again, if you want all the juicy details, watch Tea Spill’s video. I’m just here to give you the highlights and my current thoughts on the situation. In a nutshell, this is what happened: as the updates became fewer and fewer, backers (obviously) became more and more concerned. Products were not being developed at the original planned pace, which is normal, but this was at a WHOLE ‘nother level of disorganization. By the fall, they had only developed one product: a bronzer. The big kicker came in October when random people (who hadn’t even backed the project) started receiving the bronzer in their Ipsy bags. Yes, the backers have STILL not received any of the products they were promised, but random Ipsy subscribers were finding the product in their bags. Seems unfair, right?
It gets worse.
October comes and goes. Backers have still not received any of the products they were promised for their donations. Then, some of the products started showing up in Hot Topic stores.
As you can probably imagine, patience was running thin by this time and backers were starting to get pretty pissed. I mean, I would be to. They are literally the ones who funded this project with the promise of having early access to the products. Now, the general public was receiving products before the funders? Yeah, it’s all sorts of messed up. Glamour Dolls released some sort of bullshit statement about “retail partner pricing”, and how it was supposed to be a “surprise”, but that obviously didn’t solve anything. Even more shady, there was a huge hole in Glamour Doll’s statement. At the beginning of the campaign, they sate “We started these products from scratch with you,” but what Glamour Dolls is saying is that the products were already developed before Kickstarter? I mean, come on. Make up your mind. Or should I say, makeup your mind.
There are lots of other really juicy side stories that emerged at this time, including the fact that Glamour Dolls may have stole some designs and molds from other companies, but I won’t open that can of worms right now. We’ve already got enough on our plate as it is.
Another promise that fell through had to do with the “Digital Background” promised to backers who pledged $5. Well, Glamour Dolls ended up scratching that idea, and instead elected to give backers an AUTOGRAPHED, VINTAGE Lisa Frank postcard.
Except, lo and behold, it wasn’t a vintage postcard. It also wasn’t really autographed, it was just the same signature photocopied onto hundreds of postcards. So much for “total transparency”, Glamour Dolls. Many backers also received their postcards bent and creased, which is frustrating, to say the least.
And yes, the backers who pledged $100+ have still not received ANY products at this point. Anyone who donated $100+ was promised the entire collection, and now, months later, all they get is, what, a bent postcard and maybe a bronzer?
Anyway, after the Ipsy and the Hot Topic fiasco, communication between Glamour Dolls and the backers became more or less nonexistent. I’m serious. The last update from Glamour Dolls was more than a year ago. To this day, TWO YEARS LATER, backers who pledged as much as $200 have still not received anything. Glamour Dolls even deleted their instagram account, and upon further research, both of the founders of the company have altered their LinkedIn profiles, so it’s like the company never existed. Thousands and thousands of people who pledged over $300,000 are now the victims of fraud, and there’s nothing being done about it.
That’s the biggest reason why I wanted to write this article. In October of 2019, there is still no update, no refunds, no action. This is downright wrong. Even though I was never involved in this project, I really sympathize with those backers. And Glamour Dolls is basically a walking clown show at this point.
From my understanding, Kickstarter itself is not held liable for this fiasco because it’s out of their control at this point. The only person(s) who can really be held liable is Glamour Dolls, and obviously, they’ve completely wiped themselves from the map. Although it’s frustrating for the kickstarters (and quite literally fraudulent), there are still things we can do to support them. One thing you can do is select “Report Project to Kickstarter” at the bottom of the campaign page.
Interesting side note: Kickstarter still lists the Lisa Frank project as one of the “Projects They Love.” Really, Kickstarter? You may be alone in that sentiment.
I’ll link that below if you want to help support the backers. I suppose you could also report Glamour Dolls to the FTC, but I won’t say you’re guaranteed to hear back from them any time soon. Lastly, spread the word! The more we pressure Glamour Dolls/Kickstarter to respond to the issue, the more hope there is that these victims will receive their refunds. Remember, some people pledged up to TWO HUNDRED dollars, and they’re still living in the dark. As a broke college student, I’d be pissed if this happened to me.
Also, please share this article and Tea Spill’s if you are interested in this story. I truly believe this story is not getting the negative coverage it deserves.
Have you ever done something so naturally, you just assumed everyone else was the same way? Not necessarily in a bad way- maybe you grew up thinking everybody brushed their teeth in the shower, and then one day you found out most people think that’s crazy, and they’ve never heard of anybody doing that before.
Yes, that actually happened to me. I had a girl over at my apartment once, and when she saw me brushing my teeth in the shower, she was actually speechless. And apparently, brushing your teeth in the shower is “cursed”.
Anyway. That’s kinda how I felt when I realized I had synesthesia. But then came the wonderful realization that even though it’s uncommon, I’m not the only person who experiences it. And there’s even an entire subreddit dedicated to the subject!
I will say this- it’s hard to explain synesthesia unless you experience it yourself, but here’s the dictionary definition: “A condition in which one sense (for example, hearing) is simultaneously perceived as if by one or more additional senses such as sight. Another form of synesthesia joins objects such as letters, shapes, numbers or people’s names with a sensory perception such as smell, color or flavor.”
Basically, it means two or more of your senses have blended together. For example, some people associate different sounds with colors- like a high C is red, or a drum beat is blue, etc. Some people associate smells with colors, or smells with sounds. Some folks with synesthesia can see sounds, which is so fascinating to me. For me, I experience grapheme-color synesthesia, which means I consistently associate numbers with very specific colors. The consistency factor is important to the concept of synesthesia- when I was a kid, the number four was dark green. And now, as a twenty-year old, four is still dark green. The colors never change, and that’s what makes synesthesia so fascinating.
The day I found out other people didn’t have colors for their numbers, I had the toothbrush feeling. I can’t imagine thinking of a number, and not seeing its color with it. Another trippy thing is when you meet a fellow person with synesthesia, and they have different colors for their numbers. Fights have broken out on Reddit over the fact that number nine is obviously red. I also associate colors with names, but not all names. Off the top of my head, I can tell you the name “Julia” is a medium blue. “Sarah” doesn’t have a color, interestingly.
There’s a relatively well-known young adult book out there about a girl with synesthesia. In the novel, she insists on using the “correct” chalk colors to correlate with her numbers and letters, and that’s a perfect example of how dead-set these phenomenons can be. For me personally, I’m not bothered by writing everything in black ink. This has to due with the fact that I don’t look at a physical number and view it in that color- my synesthesia happens within my mind, when I think about that color. On a sheet of paper, everything is black, but when I visualize a number in my mind, I see that number in its color. Does that make any sense? For some people, however, they do see the colors on the paper, and that’s the type of synesthesia the girl in the book experiences. It’s an extremely diverse, versatile, personal experience.
There’s no real explanation for why it happens to some people and not others, but the research is fascinating. Some researchers believe it can be genetically inherited, though nobody else in my family experiences this phenomenon. I read somewhere else that people who experience synesthesia have more gray matter than average person in their brain, but there’s also no conclusive evidence for that. The reason there is so little research probably has to do with the fact that synesthesia is so rare, and thus, there isn’t a whole lot of data to go off of. It’s estimated that about 1-2% of the population experiences some form of synesthesia, and like I said, there are a variety of different types. Interestingly, synesthesia is more common in artists, writers, and musicians, and as many as 25% of artists experience it. Damn!
Another possible reason for this experience has to due with your neural connections. A researcher at the University of Cambridge proposed that folks with synesthesia have an overabundance of neural connections, and there is more connection between the different modules of your brain. In a nutshell, the information is kinda just getting jumbled along the way, but instead of being annoying, it’s actually really fun. Hence why there isn’t really any treatment for having synesthesia- I’ve never met a person who wasn’t proud of their condition, including me. It’s certainly a fun conversation starter.
It’s not entirely useless, either. I record pass codes, important dates, and even my social security number purely in color. I just scribble down the swatches of color, and boom, I can read the numbers in my head. It’s a fun way to carry around confidential information, and not have to worry about anyone else reading.
Every few months or so, I go back to my color key to make sure the numbers are still the same, and every time, they are. I’d love to do even more research on this phenomenon, and I have some further reading planned. I’d love to hear your experiences with synesthesia as well- how does it affect you? What are your colors, your sounds, your smells? Is your 9 the same as my 9?
I hope you are enjoying this humid summer week! I am so excited to finally tell you guys all about my mini-trip to New York City and the meet-and-greet I attended while I was there. I normally don’t blog about my day-to-day life because I don’t think it’s that interesting, but this trip was definitely an exciting experience that I will remember forever.
I should start off by saying I wasn’t even planning on taking a vacation this summer, mostly because traveling can quickly trigger my anxiety. I also just tend to get tired of being away from home for too long, and usually start to miss my bed after just the first night. This vacation was inherently successful because I was only gone for one night, and I had so much to do within the two days I was there, I didn’t even have time to think about missing home.
Anywho, I was scrolling through Instagram a couple weeks ago when I saw a post from Julia Zelg announcing her U.S. Meet and Greet dates. Julia and her wife Eileen are amongst my favorite youtubers, as some of you may know, and I have even written an article about her on my blog before (I’ll link it down below). Like I said, I normally don’t care for traveling or social events, but this one really stood out to me. For one thing, New York isn’t that far from me- I could have compacted this trip into one day if I wanted to. Secondly, Julia and Eileen live in London, so for them to be just a few hours away from me for a free meet-and-greet felt too special to pass up. I also felt that I deserved a little break from my dog-sitting summer job, because I usually work between 5-7 days a week. If I was going to take this trip, it was going to be the highlight of my summer, and it seemed like the perfect opportunity. I immediately RSVP’d, without even figuring out how I was going to get there. The good news is, it ended up being a very cost-effective trip. The meet-and-greet itself was free, so all I had to pay for was my train ticket and a little extra spending money for food/shopping. Once I got my mom and grandmother on board, we planned to leave Friday, August 9th (the day before the event), so we could spend some extra time enjoying the city.
Rather than taking the bus from Boston to New York City, which would have been the fastest option, we decided to drive part way to Connecticut, pick up my grandmother and then take the train to Grand Central Station. It definitely extended traveling, but I was so happy to see my family and meet my lil baby nephew for the first time. The train ended up being easy, too, and I caught up on a lot of reading for my book club. Despite the fact that it was close to eight by the time we got to our hotel, that’s still considered quite early in New York City! We spent the evening dining, shopping, and just taking in the incredible chaos of the city. It was beautiful, but also extremely over-stimulating for an anxious person such as myself. I did a lot of laughing and smiling, but I also cried a few times seeing lost, homeless animals on the streets. I certainly could never live in New York, but I appreciated the artistic, bustling culture of the city.
I had a lovely time getting ready for the event the next morning. Because Julia Zelg is considered a lesbian icon in the YouTube community, I decided to wear this two-piece rainbow crop top with matching pants. One of the biggest reasons I was so excited for this event is because it meant I would get to meet other young, colorful, proud lesbian women, including Julia herself, and I’m happy to say that’s exactly what happened. I was expecting a ton of people to be there, but there were actually only about 15-20 people or so. This worked out great for us, because it meant we all got to have a chance to really meet Julia and have individual conversations with her. Sadly, Eileen was unable to attend due to a personal emergency, so it meant a lot to me that Julia put on a happy face nonetheless and carried on with the event (and good news, Eileen is doing much better now!). I met some beautiful, wonderful queer women at this event who obviously shared a similar love for Julia, and we had a delightful time picnicking in Washington Square Park. Julia also told me she loved my outfit, so that was a huge perk.
Before I left, I had the opportunity to hug Julia and thank her for all she has done for our community, on top of inspiring me personally. She is the absolute sweetest person to talk to, and like I said, it meant a lot to all of us that she kept the event running despite her family emergency. I also told her that I am interested in pursuing media professionally and possibly exploring having a YouTube channel, and she was very supportive of that. All in all, she gave me some great advice, and just being there in such a wholesome, beautiful environment made the entire trip worth it. Like, 1000 percent.
The meet and greet was the main highlight of our trip, but we also visited some other areas in the city, such as the World Trade Center 9/11 Memorial. If you are ever in New York City and have the time, I highly suggest visiting this beautiful memorial. The way the water fell silently in the north and south pools was strikingly eerie and humbling. I found it really touching that a rose is placed on the names of the victims on their birth dates.
I wasn’t aware that a shopping center was constructed at the World Trade Center as well, and I was immediately struck by the architecture of the building. To me, it does look like an airplane (I can’t decide if that was intentional), but it also looks to me like a pair of angel wings. What do you think?
We headed back to the train after seeing the memorial, and then, after a few more hours of driving, we arrived back home around 1am on Sunday. I slept for a straight twelve hours, and I am perfectly okay with that. And now, on Monday when I’m writing this, it’s back to work for me!
This was overall a fulfilling, beautiful, eye-opening experience for me. I feel grateful for having supportive family members, for being lucky enough meeting Julia, and for making a handful of lovely new friends on my trip. The more I travel, the more prepared I feel to eventually move across the country to start my adult life after college. There’s a good chance I’ll be taking another trip this year with my friend Eli, so I look forward to planning that as well! Thank you so much for reading.
Quartz itself is a very common variety of crystal (in fact, it’s the most common crystal), but there’s nothing ordinary about Spirit Quartz. Spirit Quartz is a delicate blend of Amethyst, Citrine, Smoky Quartz, and White Quartz, and it comes in a variety of different gorgeous colors. My particular specimen of Spirit Quartz is of the White Quartz variety, and has a beautiful, milky, ethereal pearl glow. Like many other white crystals, white Spirit Quartz is a symbol of peace, feminine energy, cleanliness, and unity. It is also sometimes called Fairy Quartz, which is also a very fitting name for the stone.
The other five types of Spirit Quartz are Amethyst Spirit Quartz, Citrine Spirit Quartz, Smoky Spirit Quartz, Aqua Aura Spirit Quartz, and Flame Aura Spirit Quartz. In theme with the color associations, Amethyst Spirit Quartz is ideal for channeling the higher chakras, such as the Third Eye and Crown chakras. Citrine Spirit Quartz, which takes on a pale gold hue, is ideal for utilizing self-worth and empowerment. Smoky Spirit Quartz is a gray-brown variety, perfect for releasing deeply held emotions and letting go of trauma. And lastly, Aura Aura and Flame Aura help are used to channel water and fire energies, respectively.
Although all of these varieties are beautiful and important, I’m going to be focusing primarily on the White (Fairy) Spirit Quartz. Spirit Quartz is well-known for bringing harmony and bonding to families and groups of people. It stimulates healing and peace in households where tension and pain may be high, although no crystal should ever be used in place of what actual therapy or authority figures can offer. For all milder purposes, however, Spirit Quartz can be excellent for relieving tensions and rivalries. In regards to physical healing properties, Spirit Quartz of all varieties is believed to aid in allergic reactions, scars, cysts, and growths. Because the feminine energy of Spirit Quartz is so strong, it is also believed to help with infertility and difficult pregnancies.
My favorite thing about White Spirit Quartz in particular is that it can be used to energize all the chakras equally. It is perfect for meditation and promotes a peaceful state of mind, as the gentle energy of the stone cleanses your mind and fills you with ethereal joy. Spirit Quartz is also associated with a variety of different guardian angels and spiritual beings, if that’s something you believe in. I’ll leave a link below detailing the chart and how they correlate with the different varieties of quartz.
Although it’s not as common as “regular” quartz, such as clear quartz or plain amethyst, quartz can still be found readily online and in crystal shops. You’ll find lots of different varieties of Spirit Quartz on Etsy in particular, so feel free to pop over there if you’re interested in buying some!
I was first introduced to this powerful crystal after reading in excerpt about it in The Little Books of Crystals by Judy Hall. Auralite 23 is an absolutely beautiful concoction of 23 different elements and minerals, and is only available from one crystal gem mine in the entire world. I am lucky enough to own a small rod of it myself, and I often find myself just marveling at its delicate beauty. I discovered through research that Auralite 23 is the world’s oldest gemstone- developed more than 1.5 billion years ago in “The Cave of Wonders” in what is now Ontario, Canada. Unsurprisingly, Auralite 23 can be hard to find. It is available from a few Etsy retailers and online crystal retailers, but just make sure you are shopping from a reliable source.
Because Auralite 23 is made up of 23 minerals, it’s basically like you’re getting 23 crystals in one! Some of the most notable healing properties of Auralite 23 include self-acceptance, self-confidence, lucid dreaming, soul following, calmness, and intuition. Auralite 23 is a highly spiritual stone, and is best utilized for the Third Eye and Crown chakras (although it is also perfect for balancing the rest of the chakras). In regards to physical healing, some people believe that Auralite 23 can help with relieving tension, headaches, eye strain, and muscle spasms. I like to have a few certain crystals around me while I am working or doing strenuous activity, and Auralite 23 is one of those special stones. Because it has such intense energy, some people believe that Auralite 23 is too powerful to use for unwinding and relaxing. I personally haven’t noticed any strong intensity coming from my stone, but maybe that’s because I have such a comparatively small piece of it.
Perhaps as an attribute to its ancient beauty, Auralite 23 can help to promote wisdom and ancestral healing. If you are someone who is interested in advancing your metaphysical healing practices, Auralite 23 is a truly magical addition to have. Although Auralite 23 may look delicate, it has a powerful, profound healing presence. I am so happy with the joy I feel radiating from this crystal, and I am very much looking forward to meditating with it in the future to continue my journey to self-actualization.
Like I said, Auralite 23 is very rare and can be hard to come across if you aren’t looking in the right places. Spiritualmagickal.com has a collection of Auralite 23, but they are huge chunks of the gem and cost up to thousands of dollars. If you are searching for a small, pocket-sized piece, I recommend the Etsy shop TheGoddessCircle. She has almost 500 reviews on her shop, and currently stands at five stars. I bought my medium-sized Auralite 23 wand from this shop for under $25, and it’s an absolutely beautiful piece.
If you are interested in learning more about Auralite 23, I will include the link to one of my favorite information sites below! Thanks for stopping by and giving my blog some love.
I normally don’t like to write articles that are centered around complaining. You guys know I keep my content pretty calm on here- makeup reviews, fashion, life updates, etc. I don’t have much to complain about, because I’m satisfied with my life to the fullest I can be.
With that being said, I’m not really writing this because I am suffering, but more so because my favorite YouTubers and content creators are suffering and facing ridiculous censorship blocks on their channels. For a lot of these creators, making YouTube videos is more than a hobby, it is their livelihood. And yeah, I’m pissed about it.
The first thing I’d really like to touch on is the new comment censoring band aid that YouTube is covering all of their problems with. In a nutshell, some of YouTube’s advertisers were upset when it became known that pedophiles were leaving inappropriate comments on videos of children. Obviously, that is disgusting in itself that pedophiles are invading these videos, but the way YouTube handled this problem is pretty sad and embarrassing on their part. Instead of reprimanding the pedophiles who are leaving these gross comments, YouTube is punishing channels that feature children by turning off their comments and their ad revenue. That means if you are a channel that features minors, your comments are immediately censored, and in most cases, you can no longer make any revenue from your videos. This is a ridiculous punishment to harmless content creators, and is a perfect example of victim blaming. The pedophiles and perverts who are leaving comments can no longer be tracked or punished because the comments are turned off, which means now we don’t know who these people are. They can watch the videos just the same as they always did, and now, they don’t even have to watch a pesky ad beforehand. It’s all sorts of f*cked up.
There’s no reason YouTube can’t track down the pedophiles leaving comments and ban their accounts. When you sign up for YouTube, you give them all your information- your full name, contact information, mobile phone, etc. Considering all of our personal information is connected on the internet anyway, I’m sure YouTube could find your address if they wanted to. There’s no excuse not to block these accounts- YouTube is just lazy and putting a band aid over the entire situation.
One of my favorite channels, Special Books by Special Kids, is one of the most heartbreaking examples of this censorship. Chris Ulmer, the creator of this channel, travels around the world interviewing individuals living with neurodiverse conditions. Chris Ulmer has a huge heart, and the community he has built on YouTube is filled with love, acceptance, and kindness. However, because SBSK often features disabled children in their videos, YouTube has flagged and censored the channel for being “inappropriate.” Why? Because apparently some gross pedophiles are going to leave comments on these videos, and the only solution YouTube can come up with is to punish the content creator. Now, SBSK is completely censored, and many of their adsense features have been taken away.
This is what I’m talking about. Special Books by Special Kids, a wholesome community, is being punished by YouTube because this platform cannot muster enough responsibility to find a better solution.
However, YouTube doesn’t just censor channels that feature children. Another one of my favorite YouTubers, Jessica Kellgren-Fozard, has stated that YouTube is demonetizing her LGBT history videos because they are “not suitable for some audiences.” Many other content creators besides Jessica have come forward and revealed that YouTube is not only demonetizing their content, but also restricting it so that it hardly appears in the search algorithm. Meanwhile, while YouTube is censoring these harmless small channels, people like Logan Paul and Danielle Cohn are still allowed to put out monetized videos. Why? Because they are the breadwinners. They are the ones who are bringing in the most money and views to the corporate monster that YouTube has become.
If you’re unfamiliar with those two names, let me fill you in on a couple things. Logan Paul is a YouTuber based in Los Angeles, most famous for his daily vlogs and lavish lifestyle. Oh, and also, he graphically filmed a dead body he found in a Japanese suicide forest and posted it on the internet. YouTube not only kept the video up for the entire first day he uploaded it, but also, allowed it to appear on trending. In fact, YouTube isn’t even the one who deleted it- it was Paul himself who took the video down after it amassed 6 million views. YouTube, please explain to me how a tasteless, disturbing video of a dead body can make its way into the algorithm, but an informative video about queer history is immediately shot down. More than a year later, Logan Paul is still thriving and bringing in a ton of money to YouTube, despite the fact that his controversies just continue to stack up. In January of this year, Logan Paul really outdid himself by announcing that he was going to try “going gay” for a month. Because that’s how human sexuality works, right?
My point is this: nothing about Logan Paul has been censored by YouTube. He’s still bringing in millions of dollars a year from YouTube ad revenue. Apparently, there’s nothing wrong with posting a corpse on your blog channel, but the minute you feature a child in your videos, you deserve to have all of your rights taken away.
Another notable breadwinner for YouTube is the infamous Danielle Cohn, who’s actual age is yet to be confirmed. She upholds on her social media that she is fifteen years old, but documents, receipts, and uh, her BIRTH CERTIFICATE have all shown that Danielle Cohn is actually only thirteen years old. In fact, she just turned thirteen.
That’s already sketchy in itself, but trust me, that doesn’t even skim the surface of how horrifyingly problematic this child is. In the past three months, Danielle Cohn has faked a pregnancy and a marriage with her seventeen year-old boyfriend, Mikey Tua. Which is already bad enough, but when you add in the reality that she very well might be THIRTEEN…
Yeah. Shit’s crazy.
Despite her controversies, Danielle Cohn still has an enormous following on all of her social media. Of course, YouTube hasn’t censored her channel, even though she conveniently breaks their rule of being a minor. Of all things worthy of stepping in for, you’d think a pregnant thirteen year-old would take the cake, but so far YouTube has stayed silent and allowed the ads to roll. All is well in waffleville, as they say.
Anyway. There are countless other examples of YouTube being ridiculous that I could go into, but those are the highlights. If you are interested in learning more about Special Books by Special Kids and Jessica Kellgren-Fozard, I’ll leave their channel links below. I will also include the official petition to have SBSK’s comments turned back on, which has already garnered almost half a million signatures.
Like I said, I normally do not like to complain or throw a fit about things I cannot change, but censorship and media monetization is something I feel very passionate about. Especially when it involves channels that I care deeply about, who have no reason to be demonetized or punished for their actions. Many channels can’t even swear without being completely demonetized, or but a thirteen year-old faking a pregnancy with her older boyfriend is totally okay. At least, according to YouTube it is.