Friday, November 30, 2012

Finals time= Mini-break!

Sorry guys, but I'm trying to do well my first semester at the University level.
I've been at community colleges for 3 years and even if it is in my hometown, I want to pick up my GPA.

I'll write next week at the specified times.

Thank you for your understanding and wish me luck!
'til next time, stay classy! ♥

Wednesday, November 28, 2012


I keep trying to stick to memes and stuff on Wednesdays but there's so much more I could do with my internet space than just spin mindless jokes around, ya know?
This video has been floating around in my news feed on Facebook and it's made a lot of people cry (including myself).

It's about this veteran who couldn't walk unassisted and through yoga, lost over 100 pounds and can now run on his own again. I did read someone talking about how he lost weight too fast; while that might be true, don't kill the spirit! lol
The main point was to show how he was able to walk again and how the human spirit can push through unlikely circumstance. It's not a scientific evaluation of weight loss, lol. Anyways, here you go:

'til next time, stay classy!♥

Monday, November 26, 2012

Gossip Girl: Nobody Does It Better

Author: Cecily Von Ziegesar

Pages: 231

Summary (from publisher):
The uptown girls are headed downtown as Serena and Jenny take on their new fabulous roles as rock-star model girlfriends of New York's hottest band, The Raves. Meanwhile, Dan is to busy drowning his sorrows in empty bottles to notice a mysterious French beauty who has a penchant for dirty, Jim Morrison-wannabe lead singers. Blair takes residence at the Plaza to think about her future. Will she become a gun-toting international spy or Manhattan's snobbiest society hostess? Decisions are so difficult! Sounds like everyone needs a day off at the spa. And Senior Spa Day promises to serve up further doses of scandal for New York's busiest private-school vixens.

It's getting harder and harder to get excited to breeze through the series. The books start off well and then are stagnant for a majority of the time then have one buzz-worthy event that keeps you there. If anything, I'm still around this far because 1) I said I would in honor of GG's last TV season and 2) I compare TV and print. I think the comparing is the only fun I have right now. I'm not saying they aren't well written because in this book, Von Ziegesar was writing descriptions as well as the first book; it's just getting a little too predictable for my taste. This one wasn't as cheesy as the sixth because it didn't have any of that annoying try-hard singing but it did have some unexpected things going on. I didn't ever imagine that Vanessa and Blair would end up being roommates. Jenny is getting a little too adventurous for my taste because it reminds me of try-hard girls when I was growing up but it was entertaining, I suppose. I guess what's really gnawing at me is the whole unrealistic band thing with the Raves. Quick read only if you're bored I guess. 

'til next time, stay classy!♥

Gossip Girl: You're the One That I Want

Finally a topher(two-for-one) this week! Thanksgiving break felt extra long, lol.
Here we go:

Author: Cecily Von Ziegesar

Pages: 224

Publisher: Little Brown and Company

Summary (from publisher):
Welcome to New York City's Upper East Side, where my friends and I live in gorgeous apartments, go to exclusive private schools, and make Manhattan our own personal playground. It might look hard to be this fabulous, but for us it's as easy as sleeping with your best friend's boyfriend. (A little generic, right? Even the publisher's are getting lazy)

It was a quick read and did have some good stuff happening. I was dying to see who got into what college already! The way Von Ziegesar chose to reveal it was also pretty well executed. Some of the Gossip Girl narration is starting to get really cheesy but this point in the series. I understand she's supposed to be sassy or whatever but I think there's a line between being topically witty and try-hard cheesy. Just my opinion, by the way. I also wish there was more cohesion between the story lines of each characters. I'm surprised at how fast Georgina was in and out of the series; it's really hard to not compare it with the tightly knit cast on the show. They might hate each other in the show but they're always together or calling each other or running into each other every where. In the book, it happens a lot less often. It feels like a compilation of several stories in one book than a group of teenagers growing up together.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Good news for the animals!

I'm up early this Saturday morning and I know I was a little negligent about Friday's post. So here I am at 8:54am posting about animals. Don't judge me. I posted about this on my Facebook page yesterday so I figured it should be talked about in detail here, since I can go on forever about my love for animals.

If you click here you can see that Laredo has finally done something legitimate about the horrific conditions that strays have to face. They opened up a new facility with a little over 80 kennels. It's a two-phase project that costs the city 1.5 million dollars. The first phase is now open and the second one is underway. In this video, it says 1.5, but in the Thanksgiving front page of the Laredo Morning Times (LMT) print edition I'm pretty sure it said 2.4 million but don't quote me. Supposedly they're also going to require pre-adoption classes on owner responsibility. This really made me very happy to see. The animals are even getting normal things like fans and proper care now.

Laredo Animal Protective Society (LAPS) has also significantly increased their efforts. There was a petition online (which I signed) to either destroy it and build a new shelter or to completely restructure the place. The city of Laredo used to use LAPS as a pound basically and would euthanize about 80% of the animals admitted. Since then, the city and LAPS have parted ways, taking LAPS back to their role of humane society. They also don't euthanize anymore and have a new executive director  If their Facebook page is an accurate description of their efforts, they are also doing a great job.  I used to frequent the shelter and every time I'd leave sad. All the dogs looked famished and frustrated and the ones that didn't were bound to get all the illnesses spreading. I always wanted to leave with one every visit and couldn't believe the place didn't aggressively try to adopt them out. Now, they have a website and a Facebook page that is constantly advertising adoption events around the city. It doesn't seem like much, but just last year LAPS wasn't doing any of these typically normal functions.

I'm glad to see that local advocates could bring change. They went to countless city council meetings and pushed for change. I'm including a video that shows them trying to show the conditions through a slideshow and then being asked to stop because it was "defamatory". This kind of action shows me that people here still care. It gives me hope that not all people in Laredo are stupid.
Have a great weekend!
'til next time, stay classy!♥

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thanksgiving tomorrow!

Hope everyone eats a lot and laughs just as much tomorrow. 
To  get in the spirit, I've included some funny topical photos:

How I feel about anyone who constantly checks in on Facebook.

I understand this can be highly offensive depending on who reads it, but I burst out laughing when I read it.

I want to do this with one of my dogs but I need to come up with someone witty enough.
Apparently it's a "thing" right now. This is one of the cuter ones I've seen.
Happy Thanksgiving to all! Don't be hateful; gotta be grateful (at least for one day)
'til next time, stay classy! ♥

Monday, November 19, 2012

Gossip Girl: I Like It Like That

Sorry I didn't post last Friday; I had a lot of homework (to be frank).

Author: Cecily Von Ziegesar

Pages: 224

Publisher: Little Brown and Company

Summary (from publisher):
It's spring break and love is in the air. Or is that a blend of Chanel no. 9 and Gucci Rush? Is there a difference?Blair moves in with Serena and they're back to being best friends. But will the love-fest last or will they end up tearing out one anothers newly highlighted hair? And speaking of new, Nate is on the straight and narrow, playing Nate-in-shining-armor to his crazy new girlfriend, Georgie. But he will definitely get more than he bargained for when he, Georgie, Blair, and Serena end up hanging out together in Sun Valley, Idaho. Back in Manhattan, Jenny is spending time with a mysteriously nice new boyfriend and Dan is spending time crying in the office of the Red Letter literary journal. And Vanessa, wait, is that Vanessa shopping at Barneys with a guy in a Lacoste shirt?The long cold winter is over and the sun is finally shining along Fifth Avenue. The trees are in bloom and NYC's most fabulous are ready for a truly outrageous vacation

There's a scene that involves the police that was really surprising to me. Jenny's little boyfriend was penned out to be gay in the last books, and he just ends up being a normal working-class kid with older parents. I don't know if that was a let down or a surprise, lol. Maybe I'm just used to the big plot twists already. I didn't think that Dan would take his new job so lightly; maybe I would've preferred to see the progression in that way and see if it would've helped him get further as a writer. In the TV show, they keep trying to push the Blair and Chuck coupling and in these books, there seems to be that same push for Nate and Blair. The other books months at a time and this one just covered Spring Break. I'm just eager to see what happens with the college admissions. I think this book was good but more a filler for the big stuff that's coming up (hopefully).

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Animal Legal Defense Fund

I know that Wednesdays are supposed to be for funny pictures and what not, but again I'm being lame and feeling motivated. I saw this commercial while catching up on Gossip Girl on Hulu and it was really sad to me. I think the fact that all these things they're saying here are true is very disappointing. This is a non-profit company that helps enforce animal rights through the court systems. I feel any lawyer who'd want to practice this kind of law could shed the negative stereotype of lawyers. I was actually very offended with one episode of Parks and Recreation. When Leslie was running, they showed a candidate who was passionate about animal rights and made him out to seem like an idiot. I love this show but felt very sad that they paint people out like that. It's the reason animal rights doesn't move forward.

I remember looking into a lot of animal-related fields where maybe I could use my degree upon graduation. There's animal law, but law has only recently recognized this as a legitimate form of government so there's not enough jobs out there yet. Vet technician salaries are also underwhelming. I hope that I can help once I graduate.

Last year, I was asking at the local shelter to volunteer. They said they would only allow court-mandated community service, which I found ridiculous. Thanks to local advocates, they're on the road to building a new shelter, have set up a new website, and actually do normal things like ask for donations and plan adoption events around the city.I don't know if it's because I still feel a certain level of guilt over having to surrender a dog I had (Toby) or if it's because I have two dogs I deeply love but I do care a lot more about this than I did growing up.  Hope you guys will care too one day.

'til next time, stay classy!♥

Monday, November 12, 2012

Small Detour: The Dramatic Writer's Companion

In lieu of a Gossip Girl review, I thought I'd post up the book review I had to do for my English class since that's what's been distracting me from reading lately.

My teacher told me to pick something about the writing process, but also something that will help you in the future. Because of this, I picked The Dramatic Writer's Companion: Tools to Develop Characters, Cause Scenes, and Build Stories by Will Dune. Mind you, I just finished writing a 5 page analysis so forgive my lack of elaboration. I'm a little burnt out (lol) and am just trying to keep my blogging schedule.

I guess your only reasons for reading this would be:
A) are absolutely a second away from blowing your brains out of boredom or 
B) are really interested in screenwriting.

Author: Will Dunne

Pages: 359

Publisher: The University of Chicago Press

Summary (from the back of the book):

Moss Hart once said that you never really learn how to write a play; you only learn how to write this play. Crafted with that adage in mind, The Dramatic Writer’s Companion is designed to help writers explore their own ideas in order to develop the script in front of them. No ordinary guide to plotting, this handbook starts with the principle that character is key. “The character is not something added to the scene or to the story,” writes author Will Dunne. “Rather, the character is the scene. The character is the story.”
Having spent decades working with dramatists to refine and expand their existing plays and screenplays, Dunne effortlessly blends condensed dramatic theory with specific action steps—over sixty workshop-tested exercises that can be adapted to virtually any individual writing process and dramatic script. Dunne’s in-depth method is both instinctual and intellectual, allowing writers to discover new actions for their characters and new directions for their stories.

It's amazing: structure-wise, content-wise, everything is good. I honestly see no weakness. He sounds eloquent when he talks, but doesn't talk much. Dunne just explains all the ground rules and exercises and why everything is set up the way it is, and then he lets you get to work. It's hard to get lost when he makes every exercise strong enough to stand on its own.

'til next time, stay classy!♥

Friday, November 9, 2012

Happy Friday!

Hello and welcome to the weekend!! 

This song has been stuck in my head ALL day so I decided to look it up on YouTube.
It's one that's pretty well liked at the moment: "Clique" by Kanye West and Big Sean.
I don't really listen to hip-hop as often as I used to, but this song is really good.
I found the top three best choreography videos....well the ones I like best.

I really miss dancing. I was playing Just Dance 4 with my boyfriend's 8 year old sister and even just that small amount of dancing really made me feel good.
It really motivates me to want to get in shape to join a studio or something.

This video has 4 groups doing the same routine.
The first two (who probably did the choreo) are my favorites stylistically. 
This is the choreography I liked the best.

These guys had some nice chemistry so I chose to post their duet.
They also had a good mix of moves that alternated between following the beats and lyrics.

This group was the cleanest.
They were all together and made it easier to watch.
In the first video, the groups were a little distracting because they weren't together.

I thought I'd close out the week with something just for fun. I've noticed the past couple of posts have all been for some specific purpose. Something loose just for the weekend. :)

'til next time, stay classy!♥

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Wednesday already?!

Unless you've been living under a rock, you've heard the news that Obama has been re-elected as President. I voted for him both times, and I'm very pleased.Those who are annoyed with all the election hyper don't really understand that we're watching history. If they could take that into account, I think there would be more appreciation for what's going on. It's sad that people complain about others in having hope in something bigger than themselves. That's what life is all about. If you're just busy being self-absorbed, is that really a life worth living? Stop existing and start living! I've never seen such a reaction from young voters, and that's also another awesome thing to witness. Say what you want about Obama and his policies but no one can deny that this man knows how to move a crowd. For a presidential acceptance speech, his words really hit deep in a lot of people's hearts. It's one for the books, whether you like it or not. 

Congratulations, Obama! 4 more years!

'til next time, stay classy♥


Monday, November 5, 2012

Gossip Girl: Because I'm Worth It

I have a book review due for my rhetoric class and my book is 200 pages of screenwriting tips (the assignment was a book of about 100 pages). It's a lot of material, so I've been focusing on that. It's worth 15% of my average and has to be at least 4 pages so yeah, I'm sorry. :( I am still squeezing in the fifth book (about halfway in). I'll do the book review next Monday. I might even throw in the paraphrased version of my screenwriting book. We'll see.

Author: Cecily Von Ziegesar

Pages: 235

Publisher: Little Brown and Company

A better format for me to explain what's going on is to do it by characters. Here we go (keep in mind, the book starts off in February):
Blair: In an attempt to look more credible for college, Blair becomes the co-head to new peer groups during lunch with 5 freshmen girls. She is actually nice enough to set up Jenny (who's in the group) with a cute guy Jenny spotted in Barney's but only hints at Jenny to check her e-mail. She cuts her hair in a more sophisticated Audrey Hepburn bob for her second Yale interview with a cute alum named Owen.
Serena: Enjoying every moment of her new romance with Aaron, Blair's stepbrother. She even gushes about it in her session with her peer group that she runs with Blair. Serena goes to Les Best's Boutique to try to buy him a ski jacket she liked, but ends up getting personally invited to be in his show for Fashion Week (in exchange for the jacket). At the show, she stirs up a lot of gossip when she hits the runway wearing an "I love Aaron" t-shirt, which embarrasses him (which is when he leaves the show). Serena is having such a good time, she doesn't seem to notice even at the after parties. After this, they just break up when she's in the middle of another photo shoot for a perfume and she sheds a tear, which prompts the designer to name the fragrance "Serena's Tear".
Jenny:  She's one of the girls in peer group and discovers a new friend in Elise, one of the girls there with her. Since Dan is busy and she's no longer with Nate, she figures she needs friends. They quickly become inseparable, but Jenny notices Elise's "quirky" nature. She wants Jenny to paint a portrait of her in the same pose as Rose from Titanic (naked) and actually encourages them to experiment with same-sex kissing (which Jenny doesn't really like). You found out later that Elise is acting out because she thinks her dad is having an affair...later the reader finds out it's Blair. Good news strikes when she checks her e-mail and the guy from Barney's e-mailed her. She rides the bus all day with Elise until she finally meets him.
Nate: Calls Blair out of desperation when he finds out his weed dealer left the city. Later on in the story, we see that Nate actually runs into Mitchell (the dealer) and tries to buy some weed from him, but at this point, Mitchell is working with the cops. They bust Nate for possession and he's forced to go to rehab. While at rehab, he meets Georgina Sparks.
Vanessa: After finally swiping Dan's V-card, her sister Ruby interrupts to tell her the good news that she got into NYU's film school. Ken Mogul gets in contact with her again and invites her to the Cult for Humanity show in Fashion Show, where she lands a seat originally for Christina Ricci. Her film is used as the backdrop for the show, and everyone starts to rave about Vanessa becoming the next film prodigy. Ken meets up with her to invite her to South America for a Cannes documentary but Vanessa declines, opting to start her own name instead of helping someone else. He storms off but she catches a glimpse of the flyer he had with Dan's name on it and decides to meet up with him there. She then finds out why Dan has been ignoring her.
Dan: Dan gets his first taste of fame when his poem "Sluts" gets published and Rusty Klein wants to be his agent. She invites him to the Better Than Naked fashion show and signs his first autograph while in the back of the fashion show. He also meets a yellow-teeth beauty named Mystery who is also a poet. They sparks fly and so does the fidelity card. Dan feels guilty so the entire time, he's blowing off Vanessa and sends her a half-assed poem on Valentine's Day. Mystery is also Rusty's client so she sets them both up to read poetry together and Vanessa shows up to find him practically having sex on stage.
Giant side-note: everyone thinks Chuck is gay for some reason.

I left out some stuff but as you can see, there's a lot going on with each character. It's getting a little harder to read the books so I feel maybe it's because of a lack of character development. In the first couple of books, everything was well thought out and made to make each character unique. Now, the newer characters seem to be very superficial. Rusty really gets on my nerves but I guess the point is to prove how fake agents and "Hollywood" can be. I also don't understand why Jenny had to be dragged into the experimentation. However, the book does mesh all the story lines rather well and the surprises really are unexpected. This isn't my favorite book, but it's still decent.

'til next time, stay classy ♥

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Happiness Project- Neutral November

I'm starting my happiness project with what I like to call "neutral November". I'm so used to doing everything fast; eating, showering, cleaning, etc. I want to kind of slow down because I think it can cause me some anxiety sometimes. I don't want to be on this weird auto-pilot and not enjoy the things I'm doing everyday; so I'm taking some time to slow down the pace of my life a little and to make room for other things I've been wanting to try. Hence, the "neutral" pace..not too fast to where it's all a blur, but not so slow it's frustrating.

This is the actual checklist I'm using for this month. Believe it or not, writing it down makes me more conscious of it. Every day you're supposed to check off stuff and see the progress. As you can see, I still got a little bit to go but at least I'm trying? lol that's my optimism talking.

Most of these are pretty self-explanatory so I won't go into them. To clear up, the "one-minute rule" is something I got straight out of the book. Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project and Happier at Home, says she'd give herself one minute to do something to avoid clutter build up. So, if she felt lazy but knew she needed to put her shoes in her closet, she'd give herself a minute to get it done. I'm done it so that I can learn to not do things when I want. Sometimes, things just need to get done and I tend to wait until "I feel like it". I can't always do that so this is my attempt to change it.

I don't feel I engage my dogs enough so I want teach them more tricks. They know down, hand, stay, jump, roll over, touch, and turn around (for when it's time to go back home on walks). I still feel I need to bond more. I bought this book and hopefully it'll be an easy process.

The early bird thing is something I feel I need for the future. I have NEVER been an early bird, but waking up earlier will give me more time of my day and keep me thinner. That one will probably be my biggest struggle which is why I've put it in the first month, lol.

I've been doing pretty good about the nightly reading and writing and the nightly 15 minute clean up. Actually, back in September when I was coming up with the 12 traits I wanted to improve, I also wrote down a bunch of goals to rank them. Surprisingly, most of the goals I'd written in August/September were already part of my routine. I am very self-deprecating, so for those couple of minutes, I felt confident. It made me feel a little better about how much I've changed in a year without this checklist.

I'll check in with more progress later!

til next time, stay classy!♥

Running a bit behind!

Sorry for the late entry!
It's been a little hectic these past few days, but I am still going to post the Friday video (even if it's a Saturday).

I'll also be posting up about my progress on my happiness project sporadically. As I have mentioned before on my blog, I recently read a book called The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin. It basically chronicles her year-long journey to be happier. She takes concrete steps to make this happen and her website offers a lot of help for those who would like to do their own. So yeah, I'm doing it. Hopefully, it's a lot of learning involved. I tried it through October but it was a little wishy-washy so I'm restarting it this month with a whole heart. In honor of this motivation, here is a video on happiness. :)

The music is a little tacky but the information is good.
It's a documentary and if you have Netflix, there's one that's better called Happy.
Have a great weekend!
'til next time, stay classy!♥