My family is originally from (surprise, surprise!) Ireland and Germany. I’m sure it branches out a little more than that, but I have never taken a DNA test so I’m not 100% sure where else I am from.
Obviously, living in Washington, I wasn’t too surprised to find out that I had German roots. Unsurprisingly, there are also a fair amount of Irish descendants living in Washington, too. Basically, my heritage is pretty common for where I currently live.
I don’t know a whole lot more than that about my roots, but I guess it has helped me understand a lot of things. I can see Irish in myself because I have ginger hair. Also, ever since I was little, my family celebrates with the traditional Irish dish of corned beef and cabbage, with steamed potatoes on the side.
As far as being German, my family never did anything too culturally tied to German traditions, but I still see it come through in my grandma's maiden name. I have also been to a few German festivals, where I got to experience the same culture that my great ancestors may have experienced themselves. It was a really cool feeling just making that comparison and experiencing it. I also had a German exchange student come to my house. Having Paul live with us for a bit, all the while knowing that he is from Germany and that I have genetic connections to that nation too, was an awesome experience.
All in all, I have always been curious about my distant ancestors and I think it’s important to keep some cultural traditions alive within the family line. I think that's what makes America so special. It’s always referred to as the “Melting Pot” and it really is! If you haven’t dug around to find out your heritage, I highly recommend that you learn just a little bit about your ancestors.
“I will always choose a lazy person to do a difficult job because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it.” -Bill Gates
I love this quote so much because I can definitely picture myself as the lazy person that finds an easy way to do something. It’s also a very true quote! Without lazy people, we would be walking and running everywhere instead of riding in cars. We would still be sending mail via the Pony Express instead of emailing or texting each other. We would still have to actually look at dictionaries to see how to spell things! (FACT: I’ve already used spell check three times while writing this.) Without lazy people, our everyday lives would be much more difficult.
Also, I feel like I’m great at finding smart ways to do things, not necessarily cutting corners, but just getting something done with minimal effort. For example, when I started my high school career, my parents told me it was important to do well in class and try to get straight A’s. The minute I found out that a 90% gives you the same GPA as a 110%, I didn’t feel like wasting my time trying to do everything perfect for an A+ in every class. I could turn in a late assignment here and bomb a test there, as long as I still ended up with at least a 90% I was in the clear. However, it could be an 89.5% if the teacher is known to round up.
That’s just one of the many examples in my life where instead of showing up a day late and a dollar short, I show up at 11:59 with exact change! So, the next time you think being lazy is a bad thing, think again.
Something I just cannot live without is music. I have music on in the background whenever I’m doing anything from homework or driving to playing video games. If there wasn’t any music, everything would be so much more boring.
I rarely ever leave the house without earbuds, but sometimes I forget them. Those days are always the worst. It feels so weird not listening to music while doing school work.
Also, even when you think you're not exactly listening to music, you still might be. Think how much less exciting or scary movies would be without any music. How about your moments at work? For example, I work at Office Max and there’s music that plays in the background while people are shopping. Yes, music is in our movies, our stores, and more!
Overall, there is no way I could live without music. It is such a crucial part of my life. I spend so much time listening to music and I do so while doing almost anything and everything. I’m even listening to music as I write this blog right now.
Dear Incoming Freshman,
I’m sure that you guys are nervous about finally coming over to the high school. You are also probably pretty excited. I have some tips to make the transition from middle school to high school easier.
First, get to know your teachers. Life is a whole lot easier if you can comfortably talk to your teachers about whatever subject they are teaching. There is no point in trying to make a teacher your enemy, it just makes things a lot harder for the both of you.
Second, don’t be afraid to branch out a little bit. I’ve made a lot of close friends during high school, and I expect to make a lot more. Just by being friendly towards everybody, and not staying in a small group of people, you will be able to make new connections. The truth is that you never know who might become one of your best friends, so branch out.
Another piece of advice I have is to take advantage of any opportunities you get in high school. Whether it’s hosting a foreign exchange student or volunteering at a retirement home, you never what could be really fun until you try it.
Lastly, and this one is important, take your grades seriously. In terms of grades, high school is pretty much a fresh start. It doesn’t matter how well or how bad you did in middle school, colleges look at your high school grades. The difference between an A and a B could be the difference between thousands of dollars worth of scholarships. Now is the time to really try your hardest in school. While it may seem difficult at times, it will all be worth it when the time comes to find a college to attend.
Not to toot my own horn, but as a child in elementary school I was basically a genius. I cruised through school while doing all my homework at school and getting 100% on my papers. I finished my elementary career easily with all A’s. Even when I got to middle school, I kept my grades up.
By the time high school started for me, I had gotten an A in every class except for 8th grade challenge.
Once I started my freshman year of high school, I treated it just like every other year of school. I took it lightly and almost never did my homework at home. Everything started out fine, but once it got near the end of the 1st semester, I realized I may be in some trouble. I had a 87% in english and I wasn’t too confident that I would do well on the final. I ended up doing alright on the final, but it wasn’t enough to bring my grade up to an A.
Just like that I lost my 4.0 GPA in the first semester of high school. I was pretty bummed because I knew that if I had tried harder I could’ve gotten an A.
The next semester I started off well, but once again I fell behind in math class this time. I finished 3rd quarter with an 80%, which meant that the only way I could get an A for semester would be if I got a 100% in 4th quarter. I wasn’t sure if I could do it, but I tried my best and actually ended up getting that 100% that I needed! I was actually really excited about it and I learned a very valuable lesson from all of this.
I learned that in a lot of things, if you truly apply yourself and really put the effort into something, you can make almost anything happen. I also learned that even though it might be easier to slack off and procrastinate, it usually doesn’t turn out good in the long run.
If I told you that Russia was telling us who to vote for in our elections, would you believe me? What if I told you that we were listening to them?
Recently, Facebook told congressional investigators that Russian operatives published about 80,000 posts over two years to influence American politics. Twitter discovered that Russian bots posted about 1.4 million tweets relating to elections.
But don't start complaining about how absolutely terrible that is. Now, I want you to put your thinking cap on and ponder a few ideas I have had.
If I had to put money on it, I would bet that America has done the exact same thing. Even if they haven't yet, I bet they will now that the Russians have given us that great idea. America isn't just going to sit there and let other countries get a slight edge over them. If anything, we would be the country to try something new to get an advantage.
Bottom line, I don't blame our country if they secretly started to employ the use of Twitter bots or fake news websites feeding lies to the Facebook feeds of the citizens in other nations. Would you blame us for trying to keep the playing field even? Maybe, but before you start making judgements about sneaky or sketchy things that other countries are doing, have you ever wondered if we may very well be doing the same thing?
For more information about a Twitter bot army, click HERE.
North Korea has made countless threats to our country and we have done nothing to stop it. Kim Jong-ung's constant promises of attacking the United States makes the news and nothing seems to happen. Well, actually, now that I think about it, maybe we have done something. The current president of our country has resorted to calling Kim Jong-un names like “Little Rocket Man.”
I was extremely surprised by this name calling. Honestly, I wasn’t expecting much from Donald Trump in the first place, but calling people like Kim Jong-un names was something I thought even Donald Trump wouldn’t do.
I understand that at this point in time North Korea and Kim Jong-un are taken as jokes by now. With all the threats to nuke us, it has turned into a “the boy who cried wolf” situation.
I think that almost makes things more dangerous because then you get people like Donald Trump who just start mocking him publicly and not taking him seriously at all. I think we all forget that this is still somebody who is attempting to nuke us.
I personally don’t think that North Korea will ever be able to come close to doing any harm to our country. It's my hope that if they do end up firing a missile towards us, that the US government will keep me safe. That's me placing my trust in our nation and its military forces. However, what I don’t trust is the person running our government. I don't see how egging on a rival nation's leader is a good idea or a sign of good leadership.
The solar eclipse was probably one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen in my entire life. I was truly amazed by the sight of what looked like a pitch black hole in the sky surrounded by the shine of a bright diamond.
It looked like some sort of sci-fi portal to deep space. Also, the eclipse made it look like the sun was setting. That may not sound special, but the special part was that it looked like the sun was setting all around me not just in the west.
Even though the eclipse was such an amazing sight, I can’t help but mention the shortcomings of the eclipse. First, I was lead to believe that during totality, it would be completely dark and that I would be able to see the night sky and stars. Unfortunately, that was not the case. Rather than a night sky, it was more like an evening sky, and I couldn’t see any stars.
Also, my Aunt, who lives in Arkansas, told me about how the schools didn’t let kids out to view the eclipse. They actually forced them to stay in because there had been some faulty protective glasses going around that state. I hate to hear that for those kids. They missed something amazing!
After it was over, I was glad that I got excited about the eclipse in the first place because up until a few days before the eclipse, I wasn’t really that hyped for it. Then we got the protective glasses and I got a little more excited about it. The day of the eclipse, it was that moment when I saw the start of the eclipse with the moon barely covering the sun when I really got excited. I suddenly couldn’t wait until totality.
I am looking forward to the next one that is supposed to go through southern Missouri in 2024. You can learn more about it using this LINK.