It's about that time people—finals are upon us and the stress, anxiety and bad habits are in full swing. I'm no exception. Just this week I've managed to make meals exclusively out of ramen bowls and bags of funions...yes, funions. I'm not sure I even know how to define a proper sleeping habit anymore. All of these bad habits can only lead to one thing...well, a few things, but only one that actually matters—awful skin. While many old wive's tales and rumors about skin maintenance may be absolutely false, one that is not is the fact that consistently bad eating and sleeping habits will undoubtedly lead to a diminished appearance of the outer canvas.
After only a couple of weeks of bad habits in these departments I have noticed a chronic need to carry around those annoying little blue oil-blot sheets and an extra run-through of my skin routine either in the morning or at night. You know it's serious when I break out the glycolic wash. There are simple fixes to this problem though! Many you may have heard, but for the benefit of those who have not, I'll list a few here.
For starters, drinking water actually does miracles for your skin. It's the process of cleansing out your entire system, though, that lends itself to these results. I think the problem with many people is that they can't justify the direct results of drinking water leading to clearer skin, and that's because the results aren't direct. Drink the water, clear out your system and your skin will thank you! A lot of sites will say that 8 full glasses are necessary each day but this is a gross overestimate. I'd venture to say that somewhere in the realm of 4-6 glasses would suffice in clearing things up a bit.
The next two tidbits are pretty obvious and don't really require a lot of effort other than forcing yourself to adhere. Improving sleeping and eating habits, even if only by a little, will lead to improved appearance. No more bags under your eyes, no more greasy hair and no more oily, sullen skin! When you wake up, grab a yogurt. If you're hungry at some point throughout the day and absolutely have to have your junkfood fix, go for sunchips instead of a bag of lays. For dinner make sure you have enough food to last you a good while because you'll sleep on it and most likely wake up hungry. In terms of improved sleep habits, just shuffle that schedule and give yourself a little more structure. It'll be worth the end result.
In addition to healthier decisions and a more structured day, there are obviously other approaches you can take in addition. I'll be the first to advocate for a nice facemask a few times a week. Depending upon how bad your skin actually is, you may want to experiment with different masks of different intensity/ingredients. I have a more comprehensive list of the products that I swear by on my Pinterest board, which I highly suggest checking out if you're in need of some general suggestions as well as tips for summer-friendly products. If you want to come out on top of finals, hit those books but also hit the healthy lifestyle—the proof is in the pretty.
Thursday, April 25, 2013
Sometimes there are no words for the unspeakably cruel acts of violence that fellow humans are capable of committing against the rest of society. However, It is in times such as these that we may recognize and appreciate the power of rapidly advancing technology and social networks. Following the events at this year’s Boston Marathon, friends and family members scrambled to find out whether or not their loved ones were safe. The city itself went into a bit of a panic mode immediately following the incident, and with everyone flooding the streets and surrounding areas attempting to head to safety it became almost impossible to visibly confirm if the friend you were next to five minutes ago was safe or not. In this state of emergency, the usefulness of social networking proved itself twice over, lending a hand to the efforts of concerned friends and families by providing a channel through which they could confirm the safety of those who may have been in danger.
Within minutes of the event, friends immediately took to Facebook in order to see if someone may have updated their status or liked a post, which would confirm their safety—similarly, the chat bar offers the option to see how long ago a person was active on the site, which could also aid in confirming their safety. On Twitter, users could tag their friends and families in tweets and find out if they had reached safety or not by receiving a reply—even favoriting the concerned tweet would lend confirmation. With Foursquare, users may have been able to check-in at locations other than the site of the event, verifying that they were at a safe distance.
Indeed, calling or texting would have been much easier and faster but, due to the nature of the incident, many service providers began jamming service and eventually the city interrupted as well after they ruled such technology a threat to possible similar incidents occurring. Without the ability to call or text, the power of the internet and social media stepped up and helped to ease worries on a nation-wide scale since Boston is, after all, a college town with people from all over the country—and the world—as residents.
Once again, it is in times such as these that the true usefulness of social media proves itself. Social media is, of course, fun to use and quite necessary in terms of staying in touch and making professional connections, but there are certainly times when social media deserves much more credit than that.
Friday, April 12, 2013
Thursday, April 11, 2013
Last weekend I accompanied a friend of mine to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for a Pakistani cultural night called Rawaj. We arrived early in anticipation of the event being sold-out, which it was, and were told to explore campus for an hour or so before returning to see if we could gain admittance. My friend and I strolled around Cambridge for a bit, finally stumbling upon a tucked away little ice-cream/coffee shop called Toscanini's. Let me start by saying that this place has immediately been catapulted to the top of my new hidden-favorites list for this city. Ice-cream and coffee? Genius. After finishing my thin-mint infused vanilla cup (yes, there were chunks of Girl Scout cookies inside), my friend and I ventured back to the event's venue where we were able to find seats.
After returning that night, I thought about how little I get out into the city and neighboring areas all around me. I sit up in my dorm room eating bowls of ramen watching last week's episode of Smash (which will inevitably be cancelled, sorry), all the while ignoring all of the beautiful campuses and social environments that I am spoiled with having immediate access to! I thought about how lovely it was to walk around a campus that wasn't mine, to have to actually check the little "you are here" sticker on the map to find out where I was and where to go, and to find a new favorite chill-spot amidst an area otherwise foreign to me—that's when it hit me. If this could all come to me after spending just part of a day on another school's campus, why not try it again? Why not spend more time at other campuses? Why not finally break out of the BU bubble that shelters so many of this campus's inhabitants to the point of being cut off?
In short, my idea is to start spending one Saturday or Sunday each weekend at a neighboring campus. I'll visit their campus buildings, student centers, spend time in their libraries, eat at their best campus pizza shops, read a book or crank out a post in their favorite coffee shops, etc. In a city so rich with diversity and so saturated in college culture, why not broaden the horizons of my own? Why not take advantage of the experience that everyone in this city is sharing? I love BU and I love all that it has offered me, but I want to see more. Call it creepy if you will...I suppose it is, a bit. But I never want to leave this city and wish I'd done more, seen more, or experienced more. With the two years I have left here in Boston, I want to see it all—and so I'll brave the uncharted territories of fellow universities, fully expecting the occasional...He doesn't even go here! Stay tuned, blogosphere.
Thursday, April 4, 2013
This week has been fab, fantastic and frantical in every way possible—yes, I tend to invent words on occasion. Finals are finished and in the rearview, Capstone is at the epicenter of my academic studies and I'm loving my public relations class more and more with each lecture—when it's with Downes, loving the class is no issue. In any event! Today has been particularly special since it appears a fellow blogger friend of mine has nominated me for a Liebster Award! Allie Gillette—classmate and fellow HCBN blogger network member—has her own fabulous blog that you should all check out.
As part of the process, it seems I must accept the nomination—which I gladly do—and answer a series of eleven questions that the nominator asks. Well I am absolutely thrilled at this, Allie, and hope that my answers at least entertain you and the readers! Here we go—
1. What is your favorite guilty pleasure? (Ex. favorite trashy TV shows, food, activity that helps you get through the week)
Lately, it has become a pattern to migrate down to the Myles piano room each night, fire up an episode of SMASH and order Dominos. Just picture me crouching in a large blue armchair in the corner of a huge music room half-belting show tunes, half-scarfing down pineapple and pepperoni pizza. It happens.
2. Who is your style icon?
I tend to look up to fashion icons not necessarily in the "I-would-wear-that" sense, but in the sense that they may have made a huge contribution or impact on society with their stylistic choices that are worth recognizing. Audrey Hepburn's iconic opening scene in Breakfast at Tiffany's where she stands outside of the storefront window gazing in drinking a coffee, in a full night-on-the town getup in the morning is what makes her my style icon. Flaw-less.
3. Who is your favorite Twitter and/or Instagram follower and why?
My absolute favorite twitter follower is one of my best and closest friends, Yani Lopez. I'd venture to say the same goes on instagram as well. She's one of those friends who, even after the weirdest of tweets or instagram posts, will always throw a like or retweet your way. Hey, us geeks gotta' stick together.
4. What do you miss most about being a kid?
I miss being able to eat endlessly, and I mean eat the craziest mix of things in a day. Popsicles, bowls of chips and pretzels, the obligatory healthy dinner followed by more ice cream, fruit snacks, and the list goes on. Being able to scarf all of that down while no doubt running around my great grandmother's house or around my backyard only to collapse at the end of the day is probably one of the high-points of my childhood so far.
5. If you were a nail polish color, what would you be called?
Well, while I don't have any real experience with nail polish, I'd probably be an impeccable shade of green called "Emerald City." You all knew that was coming! No surprises there, just good old Ozian-influence bleeding over into my blog.
6. If you could only eat one meal forever, what would it be?
Beef and broccoli with white rice and soy sauce. Hands down. The best meal ever—and I mean the greasy takeout kind. Wouldn't have it any other way.
7. If you could only keep one book/magazine forever, which one would it be?
I would cherish the Vanity Fair issue with Katy Perry on the cover. She was one of the first artists whose work I really fell for, and in the year that I was obsessed with everything Katy I managed to get my hands on quite a few of her cover issues. The VF issue had a gorgeous spread of her in high-fashion couture and I was blown away.
8. If you could go out for coffee or a lunch date with anyone in the whole world, who would it be and what would you ask him or her?
This is also no secret. I would love to go on a lunch date with Chris Colfer from Glee. Not just because he plays Kurt Hummel flawlessly—with beautiful musical numbers in Kurt-centric episodes—but because while creeping through videos/interviews of him on YouTube (Chris, if you ever read this I apologize. I'm not a freak, I swear. Okay maybe a little. Let's still do lunch?) and found him to be incredibly quirky and as real of a person as any celebrity can be, in my opinion. I could as him where he sees himself in 5 years, after Glee. I have high hopes and crossed fingers that Chris's career will only snowball from here leading to more amazing performances.
9. Why did you start blogging?
I really just wanted everyone to know that even the most put-together of people have craziness going on inside their heads, and sharing that craziness and quirkiness with the world has bee hilarious and enjoyable and I'd never change a thing about it or about sharing it with anyone and everyone who reads blogs everywhere.
10. Who/what inspires you to blog?
I think anyone in the world who is bold enough to share more of who they are with countless readers across the globe is an inspiration. For some, blogging is the only way they can express things that they may not feel comfortable with expressing in open social situations, and so I applaud those who find ways to do it and try and incorporate that into my own writing.
11. What is the greatest piece of advice you've ever received and who told you?
My mother has always told me not to "work my life away." She is, as any parent should be, expectant of good grades and a certain level of success, but never emphasizes work as a way of life. Work is something that you do, and may very well enjoy, but you shouldn't live your job. You should have a life outside of your work and should enjoy that life. This is a topic that probably deserves its own post, but that's the advice, and it comes from the most important woman in my life.
So there you have it! My answers are complete, I thank Allie once again for nominating me and as my nominee, I'd like to name Brianna Vieira of Little Boxes& Bows, Sofie Guariglia of Cosmo Chronicles, and Tate McDaniel of Honesty Made Easy. My questions are:
1. Would you ever compromise the honesty or integrity of your blog for sponsorships, etc? Why or why not?
2. If you could have one person read your blog, who would you want it to be and why?
3. How do you define a decent blog?
4. What is the one show you can admit to watching while knowing it's probably not the kind of show you should be watching?
5. If you were a soup, what kind would you be?
6. If you were a tree, what would be carved in your trunk?
7. Why is blogging important to you and why do you think it is important for bloggers to continue to represent themselves?
8. When did you first start blogging and why??
9. If you were a pebble, what would you say to a little kid throwing you into a pond?
10. If you could do only one good thing for one more person before you die, what would it be?
11. If you could travel through time and meet yourself when you were a kid, what would you say?
Sunday, March 31, 2013
Revision is a term that ought not to be limited to papers and assignments. Yes, it may be that hectic time of year when some of your professors forget that s schedule consists of more than one class and, at time, it can feel like your bed has transformed into isle three of Office Max, but fear not! There are healthy and productive ways to ease your worries until you're able to climb out of the trenches.
Now, it may seem silly at first but trust me, I swear by these methods of relaxing your mind and body which will in turn lead to more productivity once you do settle back into the beach and bustle of academia. With procrastination at an all-time high in today's tech savvy generation, take a moment to procrastinate in another way. A way in which, again, more productivity will emerge as a result of a renewed sense of, well...you!
It can be as simple as hopping on over to your nearest strip-mall or as drastic as an at-home dye job. Personally, I like to start my spring-cleaning promptly on March 21st each year, but if you think I'm referring to the heap of new J.Crew pants and linen shirts on the floor next to my bed, well...no. I'm talking about spring-cleaning on myself! Winter drags on and on and by the end of it I tend to find myself in three layers of fall tees and flannel—signaling a closet revamp—with hair just a tad too long (and faded), etc. Make a trip to the local CVS or convenient store, head for the L'Oreal box-dyes, snatch up a new Tweezerman or whatever else you may need to tweak and twerk your way back to revitalization.
After emerging from the cramped bathroom in my dorms last week, I felt like a band new person complete with new darkened lock—the likes of which this head has never seen before, eek—a face fresh out of one of Lush's amazing fresh face masks, and a revised and rejuvenated work ethic to match. All of this stems back to a bit of advice my grandmother has always drilled into my head—feel good on the outside, feel good on the inside. And you're bound to be at your best when you feel your best! Call it corny, yeah ok. To that, I respond with mommom's other favorite piece of advice—it is what it is.
I have yet to steer myself or anyone else wrong with this advice, so how are you going to spend the rest of your week? Slumped over that book, or poised up prim and proper in the Starbucks around the corner working your new confidence in a perky and productive new manner? It's all up to you!