National Book Lovers Day

 

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I was recently informed that August 9th is National Book Lovers day. I never knew that such a day existed , but I’m using it as an excuse to rave about  one of my favorite things in the world ; books.

My family loves books. With an English Major for a Mother and a Teacher for a Father, my brothers and I were always encouraged to read. The biggest punishment 10 year old me could receive was no reading before bed. Needless to say, reading was a big part of my life.

“You can find magic wherever you look. Sit back and relax, all you need is a book”

-Dr.Suess

Then I went to school, and realized my love for books was not something everyone had. In fact, most people at school claimed to “not like reading”. I’ve never quite understood how you could not like books. Who wouldn’t love the happiness that comes from getting captured by a story, so you can think of nothing else? Or the way you become attached to the characters, feeling as if you really know them. Even the way the pages feel between your fingers, and the distinct smell a book has. The only thing I don’t love about reading a book is when it’s over.

So this Book Lovers day, I really encourage you to read a book. Maybe you are like me, someone who is always in the middle of a story, or maybe you’ve never been a huge fan of books. Either way, here is a short list of books for you to check out, reader or no. And who knows, maybe you’ll get hooked.

Books To Read

  • Fahrenheit 451, By Ray Bradbury
  • The Outsiders, By S.E Hinton
  • Jane Eyre, By Charlotte Bronte (Still in the middle of this one myself)

For more recommendations, check out my previous post, Books to Read Again and Again.

Comment Below your perspective on Reading!

 

 

A-Z Song Favorites

Hello everybody! I know its been a while since i’ve posted, but as school slows down I will be back to my regular writing scedule. I’ve seen people doing theese a-z posts, and thought they were super cool, so decided to do one of my own.  This post also happens to be a collab with my friend Maddie from http://www.sundaysaresunny.com/, so when you finish reading, head on over and check out her a-z song picks! Some songs start with “the’ or “A”, but I just counted the first letter of the second word instead.

A- Air for Free (Relient K)

B- Bend and Break(Keane)

C- Cold Cold Cold (Cage the Elephant)

D- Dani California (Red Hot Chili Peppers)

E- Emperor’s New Clothes (Panic!At the Disco)

F- False Alarm( The Head and The Heart)

G- Gold (Vinyl Theatre)

H- Hello Hurricane (Switchfoot)

I- I got You (Jack Johnson)

J-Johnny Boy (Twenty One Pilots)

K- Killer Whales (Smallpools)

L- A Lovely Night(La La Land, Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)

M- My Body (Young the Giant)

N-Never My Love (LIsten to The Association first, then The cover by Knox Hamilton)

O-Oh Love (Green Day)

P-  Patience(The Lumineers)

Q- Go Quietly (Yes, I realize this starts with G, but I was runnig out of ideas, so we are going with it)

R- Run (Foo Fighteres)

S- Such Great Heights (The Postal service)

T- Trees (Twenty One Pilots)

U- Unbelievers( Vampire Weekend)

V- Vines (Hippo Campus)

W- Waiting(Lalo)

X- X&Y(Coldplay)

Y- You & I (Colony House)

Z-Zooropa (u2)

 

5 Bands to Add to Your Playlist

Hello everyone!  This week, I thought I’d give you a few band recommendations. My musical taste varies greatly, a little bit of rock, alternative and indie, sometimes pop, and everything in between. So, without further ado, here are 5 bands to definitely give a listen.

Knox Hamilton

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Based out of Little Rock, Arkansas. Knox Hamilton, with their new album. The Heights has been at the top of my playlist. If you enjoy indie/alternative style music, you would most likely love this percussive, Phoenix sounding band. They are often what I listen to on the bus in the morning, because the melodic songs put me in a much better mood for the day ahead. It is nearly impossible to be sad and listen to Knox Hamilton, because the music is so lively upbeat.  Two of my favorite songs are “Never my Love”, a cover of the old classic by The Association, and “Rightfully So”

Colony House

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I saw Colony House live for the first time when they opened for Switchfoot, and was immediately captivated by the energy their music carried. Their music is very complex, similar to the songs of U2 or Cold War Kids. Their Lyrics are beautiful as well. Seeing them live, with the lights and non-stop dancing has made me appreciate their music even more. Some songs to listen too are “1234”, “Lonely” and “Waiting for My Time to Come”. 

The Head and the Heart

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The Head and the Heart had a soft, indie and folk sounding music, and is perfect for when I’m looking for something mellower to listen too. I regularly play The Head and the Heart while doing homework or writing, because it helps me think without urging me to get up and sing and dance. The first song I heard of theirs was “Let’s Be Still”, and my more recent favorite is “Library Magic”

Vinyl Theatre

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Vinyl Theatre is another indie-rock band (hmmm…sensing a pattern?) from Wisconsin. Sharing a record label with bands such as twenty one pilots, their last two albums, Origami and Elecrogram have an electronic, rock feel. Their music is catchy and is always put on dance playlists. Two of their songs to listen to: “If You Say so” and “New Machines”.

Relient k

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Relient k has been around for a while, and was one of the bands frequently played in my house when I was younger. With the release of their new album, Air for Free, I started to listen to them again, and fell in love with their music all over again. The songs “Local Construction” and “Cat” are some of my favorites because of the piano and bounce their music has.

I hope you enjoyed this list and find some new bands to listen to! Comment below some of your favorite bands.

Tea: The Cure to all of your Problems

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I don’t know why everyone talks about coffee so much these days.Tea is the way to go. Tea is the perfect start to my day. I love the feeling of the warm cup in my hands and the relaxation and thought it ensues.

“Tea, tea a wonderful drink, the more you have the more you think, the more you think the more you write, so lets drink tea all day and night.”

-Daniel Dalton

Along with the amazing taste, tea has several health benefits, both mental and physical.

  • Full of Antioxidants- One of the major appeals of tea is the huge amount of antioxidants it contains. Antioxidants protect the body from harmful molecules, and overall are thought to prevent cancer and other diseases.
  • Helps with weight loss- One of the above mentioned antioxidants in tea is Epigallocatechin Gallete, which is proven to boost metabolism. Also, certain types of tea have just enough caffeine so it’s not bad for you, but does aid in the burning of fat. Plus, tea (depending on what is added) has fewer calories than other drinks.
  • Very Calming- Tea consists of theanine, which is proven to help people feel cam, but without causing a tired or drowsy feeling. This is perfect in the morning, to help soothe and ready you for the day ahead.
  • Tea Boosts Memory- Studies have shown that tea can improve the connectivity from your frontal and parietal cortex, which can help memory.
  • Increase energy and mental focus- Tea, specifically green tea, uses the combination of caffeine and theanine to increase concentration. I highly recommend this when studying, as it can improve your alertness, mood, and focus.

The benefits of tea are extremely helpful, whether you are studying for a test, preparing for your day, or just need to relax. Although you may be a coffee person, I urge you to give tea a try! The taste and wellness perks combined make for an amazing drink.

Comment below what your favorite kind of tea is!

Balancing The Books

Surviving High School #1

High School can be overwhelming, and sadly, despite what High School Musical suggests, it’s not all singing and dancing.  The workload in high school is much bigger than that of Junior High, and I, now an expert with one year of high school under my belt (I know, so many), have a few tips you might find helpful for balancing your schoolwork.

1.)Purchase A Planner
My planner is one of the most important things I have in my backpack. I’ve tried just remembering all my assignments, but with so many things going on, I would usually forget homework for certain classes.  The best way to go is a planner, where you can clearly lay out each assignment along with its due date. My planner is what keeps me on track, and without it I most likely wouldn’t turn in half of my assignments.

2.) Actually Study
In Junior High, I got by with grades without ever having to study too hard for a test. This all changed within the first week of high school. My suggestion to you, if you are not in high school right now, start studying. Even if you don’t necessarily need to study, getting in the habit now will really help you in the future.  For me, someone who had never studied very much, the transition to high school was all the more difficult, as studying is necessary to pass.

Tips For Studying and Memorization

1.) Put away your phone
I know, I know, extremely difficult.  But as long as your phone is in the room, your attention is not fully on the work. It will also take much longer to study, because half the time you intended to spend learning will be spent on your device. Putting it in another room for just a little while will increase the information you retain, and decrease the time it takes to do so.

2.) Find a good study setting
Your surroundings influence how well you study. I, for one, cannot have a cluttered and disorganized area around me while I study. (Ironically, my room usually fits that description perfectly) Find what works best for you, whether it’s your room, or even outside.

3.) Turn the Info into a Song/Saying
I have passed many quizzes using this method. Taking the word you need to remember and associating it with other things is an extremely easy way to remember something. It doesn’t have to make sense, as long as you can remember it.

4.) Flashcards
Flashcards are one of the most traditional methods of studying, and you might already use them. The repetition drills both the definition and term into your brain, so when taking a test you know it right away. If you don’t enjoy writing out flashcards, you can find pre made study sets or make your own on the app Quizlet. However, writing the terms out will also help you remember the term more.

5.) Study with friends
If your school offers a study hall, this is a great time to work with classmates. It is extremely helpful to study with friends, because you can quiz each other, and come up with questions that wouldn’t occur to you on your own. Not to mention, it’s much more fun and less stressful when you are with others.

These are methods that I, through much trial and error have found to work for me. They are not foolproof, and your preferences might be different than mine. I hope you found at least one of these tips helpful, and will use them to further your academic success.
        

Books to Read Again and Again

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This short list of books I have compiled was difficult to come up with. Going through my book shelf, I ended up with at least 15 books I absolutely love. After some time and struggling, I finally ended up with 5 books that I have read over and over again and of which I never grow tired.           

1.) An Old Fashioned Girl by Louisa May Alcott
Published in 1897, the novel, An Old Fashioned Girl follows Polly Milton as she visits her friend in the city, Fanny. This timeless novel tells about Polly’s struggle adjusting to trends and styles she doesn’t agree with. The messages in this novel ring true to our world today, and I highly recommend it regardless of your age.

2.) Gone Away Lake by Elizabeth Enright
I first read this novel at a young age, and the delightful, innocent adventure inside never gets old. As Portia Blake hops on a train to go spend the summer with her cousin unexpected things occur.  They stumble upon an old abandoned town which they soon discover isn’t completely abandoned.  Portia and Julian strike up a friendship with the only residents left who remember the town in its prime.  Exploration and discovery follow, and this book is perfect if you, like me, enjoy a great adventure.

3.) Summer at Forsaken Lake by Michael D. Beil
I stumbled upon this book at a used bookstore, and when I pulled it off the shelf, I had no idea what I was in for. I finished this story the same day I purchased it — I couldn’t put it down.  A young boy spends a summer in his father’s childhood summer home, and along with learning how to sail and building a boat, he discovers more about his dad and uncovers a mystery. Summer at Forsaken Lake is a perfect combination of adventure and mystery, and extremely well written.  I’m still waiting for the sequel!

4.) Land of Stories by Chris Colfer
This book is absolutely amazing. It sat on my bookshelf for some time before I finally picked it up. It is incredibly enjoyable and suspenseful, as two children fall into a land that is a combination of all the fairytales from your childhood. Each individual story and land combines to create a whole new kingdom. The story twists and turns as the siblings adventure in an attempt to return home to their family.

5.)The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly
A story of a young girl with a scientific mind and a love for nature.  Calpurnia bonds with her introverted and odd (in others’ eyes) grandfather. They explore and experiment together and make a huge discovery, all while Calpurnia struggles with her mother’s ideas of how she should behave. This book beautifully portrays the love between a girl and her grandfather.  When you finish the book, don’t worry! There is a book two: The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate.