4 Reasons I Love The Holidays (Even Though It’s Late)

Hey all! Hope everyone is having a Winter Break- and the semester is approaching way too soon…but I did forget to post an annual holiday article!
Honestly, my family was never a “holiday kind of a family.” We never did the classic eggnog and the lights, and even though we exchanged gifts, It never felt like it was supposed to. I know, crazy right? But ever since I left for college that has all changed. I look forward to hearing Mariah Carey on repeat, and eating cookies and candy until I feel like the big red guy himself-among other things.  I also make a ‘Book-mas tree’ out of all of the books I read during the year. So here’s my (hopefully nice) listicle for the holiday season!

 

1. EVERYONE IS IN A GOOD MOOD.

I’m serious- you know that grumpy neighbor you’ve lived next door to- the one who never says hello and complains about the garbage, the fences, and your porch lights at 6PM? Chances are, he’s wrapping gifts and making lists, and ready to bust out his dancing shoes, and a smile…just this once. It’s the holidays after all, right?

2. The Festivities bring everyone closer together.

My friends that I don’t get to talk with as often will find a way to meet up- and we’ll all work around our busy schedules to celebrate with each other. Even the friends I can’t see in person that live across the country will tune into a Face Time call to catch up- and hear the wacky stories and all of the good things that have happened! I miss them dearly, but knowing they are having an awesome time

3. The Peppermint flavored beverages. Need I say more?

Anyone who knows me is certain I cannot drink coffee, but while I don’t necessarily load up on caffeine, I do love a peppermint hot chocolate from Starbucks. Unfortunately, I am kind of betraying the New Englander in me for choosing Starbucks over Dunkin’ Donuts. Although now you’ve all got me thinking about Dunkins.

4. There’s countless opportunities to make amends, and make start bring the best to a clean slate.

When you fall out with friends, or get into a fight with a parent or sibling, it may seem like the end of the world. But during Christmas and New Years, everyone is focused on making the best of the holidays, so it brings out the best in ourselves, too. The holidays are the time to say things we normally wouldn’t, be extra sweet, and find it within ourselves to love even the people we don’t like to be around- because the Christmas spirit, and pep that you’ve got stored away for the New Year? That is why we wait all year to have the prettiest lights, and the happiest times. No one can take away the memories we make, or the feelings we share with others that we care about.

So go on, put the star on your tree, and hang the mistletoe, and take a chance with that guy with the gorgeous eyes and ugly Christmas sweater. And take a lesson from me, watch Love Actually or Bridget Jones Diary way too many times. Happy Holidays, and the happiest New Year to all!

Love always,

Molly Catherine ❤

What I Completed From My Fall Bucket List 2.0

Hey all, are you ready for finals?!

Yesterday, I was freaking out over whether I’d be able to finish all of my assignments in time. The fact that I am typing up opinionated articles onto my blog probably isn’t the best sign…just kidding! I’m pretty certain I’m going to be okay, as my first final exams went really well. That gives me time to write a bit about the future….

This past semester I had a list of things I wanted to accomplish, and surprisingly, I crossed a lot of these things off of my list.

To name a few:

  1. Meet 15 new people (at the least)
  2. Do something brave
  3. Take a spontaneous trip
  4. Take 18 credits
  5.  Make a 3.8 GPA

Okay, I’ll be honest, I did NOT make #5. I’ll be lucky if I can keep mine up as I originally went for 21 credits… But for some reason, I’m not worried. I feel I have accomplished a lot- and discovered new things about myself. Since my college is 2 hours from the city, I took a bus and overnighted  with a few of my friends- it was the best spontaneous, amazing trip I could’ve planned. It was the highlight of the semester- one I wouldn’t forget.

This semester has been crazy, and I have accomplished a ton. I am proud of myself, and everyone should be proud of themselves for being so resilient throughout this semester! Keep it up if you’re still in finals, and congrats to those who are done!

Have an awesome winter break, and stay resilient!

Love always,

Molly Catherine ❤

 

Why Your GPA Does Not Matter In Life

Hey all!

I hope everyone is excited for the end of the semester! Although I’m really not that pumped for my last few final exams, I know that we’re all in the home stretch. It sure feels good!

As everyone is cramming for finals (myself included) I thought that I would take a minute to refer to the ol’ GPA scale, and how much I’ve seen it effect students, literally across the board. Of course, people take different perspectives on having a high GPA, and while I do have a few friends that keep a steady 4.0, there is a lot to be said about not having top marks.

It is definitely a great thing to have a high grade point average, but most times in your career you won’t need to repeat back information on exams. How quickly you can define “antidisestablishmentarianism” doesn’t exactly help your career….unless your being asked to do so in a political debate.

Don’t get me wrong- knowing the facts pertaining to your major and keeping up with the reading is surely important, but sometimes we tend to define ourselves when we fail. As humans, we look at our failures and see a greater impact than we do in our successes. For example, I cringe when I think about that stupid remark I said in Psychology, but I actually have to work to think of a time I celebrated on an exam. We’re all too hard on ourselves. I remember freaking out in high school because I wouldn’t be able to graduate with an “advanced honors” diploma. My great argument? “It might hurt my chances to get a job!” A kid in my homeroom scoffed. He gave some great advice, and the teacher agreed. “If someone’s reasoning for not hiring you was because you don’t have an advanced high school diploma, they really need to go check their priorities.” This was great advice, and I didn’t realize how true it was until I got into my sophomore year of college.

I think that having great life experiences is what will allow us to succeed- and if you like reading, keep reading, and if your GPA is important to you, keep it up. But your grades are not an ‘end all’. They do not dictate what you can do, or where you can take your life. If you want to dream big, do it. Move to Italy, and take the last boat to Belize. Live it up and gain experience because most times, you won’t get the chance to make the same choices. So yeah, don’t completely disregard your grades- but if you get the chance to help someone in a way that may change your life, count that before you count that exam you bombed. Chances are, it probably meant more to the both of you.

Good luck on your finals.

Love always.

Molly Catherine ❤

Why Solitary Confinement Is Inhumane

 

Imagine yourself huddled in the corner in a room about the size of a small bathroom. The door is locked, and the bare walls are driving you crazy. You have been stuck in that same room for hours on end. There are people all over the world who actually have been trapped in a solitary cell in prisons for extended periods of time.

A picture from the society pages shows how cruel staying in an solitary cell can truly be. A 3 x 5 cell, and basically no human contact. Depending on what sort of facility it is, time spent, conditions and effects after the individuals are released vary.

In prisons across the US, the average time for a prisoner to spend in solitary confinement is one to three months. Even though this may sound like a relatively short amount of time, studies show that people placed in such environments have negative effects on their mental state in less than fifteen minutes. Prisoners are locked in this room for twenty-three hours a day and are allowed one hour Some inmates reported feeling dizzy, depressed, and had heart palpitations. 47 percent of inmates reported hallucinations.

As solitary confinement is a method widely known to be used in supermax and high security prisons, eerily similar methods are used in other environments such as wilderness programs, and therapeutic boarding schools for troubled teens. These methods are considered ‘treatment’ and are highly controversial. There have been countless reports filed with the government, and the GOA has neglected to do anything. A source with some inside information states, “Solitary confinement is used widely in these programs, including wilderness programs, where children are left alone for weeks in the wilderness. Some programs place children in solitary rooms. Other times, ‘code silence,’ or ‘comm block,’ is used, which means that the child is not allowed to speak, and the other inmates must ignore them and pretend they do not exist.”  

It is a known fact to the scientific world that humans need basic contact and interaction to thrive or in the very least stay sane- but these people are kept in solitary cells which limit their contact and relationships with others. We are depriving these humans of their rights and basic needs; people cannot make any sort of connection, and if there were already mental issues present in an individual, this sort of punishment would only exacerbate the problems present. Autopsies of deceased inmates show shrunken parts of the brain, specifically the hippocampus, and scans from former inmates show reduced brain activity, and scientists and doctors have speculated that these individuals have less stem cells in the cerebellum than a human who has not been exposed to confinement.  If this issue is thought about with any empathy, we are not letting humans have control over their own emotions. The Smithsonian magazine wrote, “isolated inmates are seven times more likely to hurt or kill themselves then inmates at large.”

  This kind of punishment is technically against the law, although many have weaseled around the fine print. The Bill of Rights, and the eighth amendment states that the use of cruel and unusual punishment. Not only is this type of punishment inhumane and cruel, but unfortunately this sort of confinement is used much more than one would expect. Therefore, the continuous use of solitary confinement is violating numerous laws in our society.

Some argue that it may be easier to “control” and keep watch on an inmate placed into a solitary cell. While these inmates may not be able to hurt other prisoner or leave their cell, this treatment is a worse fate than any prison fight or injury. These people are going crazy trapped in their own minds. Studies have shown that the brains of the prisoners placed in solitary have less stem cells, and brain waves are less frequent. It is unimaginable to imagine staring at the same space over again, never to see any other landscape, let alone room. This is a fight that legislators should not back down from. Prison is punishment enough; we should not torture those in prisons and facilities. Instead, we should offer care to the inmates to try and fix the problems they already have. Therapy, and treatment where security could still be prominent. If we have lost hope on these people already, how can we try to make our society and future better? Solitary confinement is cruel, and no individual should ever be subjected to these horrors.

Hopefully, in the future the debate of solitary confinement will be argued from a point of view that embodies the values and morals of what humanity and our society should stand for.

 

Works Cited:

https://thesocietypages.org/pubcrim/2010/04/13/1150/

Bill of Rights, and the Eighth Amendment

 

https://www.themarshallproject.org/2016/11/30/a-new-report-gives-the-most-detailed-breakdown-yet-of-how-isolation-is-used-in-u-s-prisons

 

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/science-solitary-confinement-180949793/

 

http://solitarywatch.com/facts/faq/

 

https://medium.com/@sneii748/the-troubled-teen-industry-the-politics-of-abuse-within-therapeutic-boarding-schools-d343435e5d36

 

https://www.rt.com/usa/332442-midwest-academy-solitary-abuse/

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solitary_confinement#Troubled_Teen_Industry

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/24/us/students-recall-a-school-run-like-a-prison.html

Why and How You CAN Stick it Out Through Finals!

Hey, hey, hey to all of the college students out there!

If you are in school right now or have been previously, you may understand the dreaded time during the end of the year. Honestly, finals in college are different than they were in high school, and the grades count so much more- plus in certain cases the grade is cumulative.

I haven’t been posting in about a month, and as much as I hate essays and exams, I’m glad I finally found time to post about some topics that matter to me.  I’ll hopefully be posting more on politics, and the current situation in the US, as well as globally over break.  Which brings me to my main point: doing what you love is the most important thing in the world. It’s obvious that I wouldn’t major in Math if I hate it- and while I do come up with some pretty mean solutions to slope/ equation problems, I’d miss writing too much! You have to find time to do what you love- even if you don’t have any time at all. There’s a quote out there, and while I am not sure who said it, the message remains:

“If you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life.”  Some great advice- that’s why I majored in writing.

So find a way to connect what you’re doing now to the future! Even if you are a Chemistry student slaving away in the lab…your future career revolves around science. Are all of those hours spent in front of microscopes, complicated textbooks, and your dimly lit desk lamp worth it? Will it make you happy?

You don’t deserve anything less than what you love. That’s why you should try to be curious, and even if it is a long exam, look at the end goal. For me, it’s a journalist. For you? The world is your oyster.

Go get em’ tiger!

Xo,

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The 5 Steps On How I Crashed My Car

Hey all! Happy Sunday…I’m dreading classes tomorrow, especially because I’ve got a 9am  Political Science seminar tomorrow. Talk about a long Monday!

So all of you college students (including myself) have probably had your fair share of mistakes in your lives, and whether it involved beer, music or other miscellaneous blunders made while you’re still sober (This describes me, BTW.) Driving has always been an issue. A lot of my friends tell me stories of how they swerved out of control because of a raccoon or a squirrel that ran in front of their car. Other times they say it was the idiotic SUV in the lane behind them, but I have a TOTALLY different story. Wanna hear what not to do? Or exactly what to do if you’re me…Here are the five steps on how I crashed my car senior year of high school.

Oh, this also explains why I still don’t have my licence. (PS. No one got hurt, thank goodness 🙂 )

1. Have your angry ex-marine father make you get behind the wheel again after 3 months of sitting on the couch.

That’s right! I hadn’t driven in three months at the time of this indecent. My dad was really strict in high school, so just saying ‘Nope, not going driving’ would probably have been something out of Full Metal Jacket. I think the reason didn’t actually practice was because of those pesky high school math classes taking up all of my time. And the space in my peripheral vision apparently…

2. Forget Your Glasses on the counter and accidentally start driving down the highway without them.

My dad was already annoyed of how long it look to get in the car, but he didn’t want to turn around. Neither of us knew my vision was actually that bad at the time. We got down the road and we were working on turn signals when I accidentally veered onto the freeway. Cue the clueless soundtrack?

I was totally buggin…

3. Take another wrong turn onto an even bigger highway.

Yeah, so I made another wrong turn onto Great Seneca Highway, which if you don’t know, is a connecting highway in Maryland. I was terrified, while my dad was just sitting there waving his hand: “You’re fine, now veer off on this exit!”

4. Nearly take out a mailbox while backing up out of a farmer dude’s driveway.

I did actually manage to not hit the mailbox, but again, I was still terrified. We got back on the road and started to drive home…Just wait for it…

5. Actually get within 1 1/2 inches of the curb or from your own neighbor’s mailbox.

That’s actually how I crashed my car…my dad and I were literally less than 50 feet from my house, and I was unable to judge the distance on the final turn. I did not hit any mailboxes thank goodness, but I did end up crashing into the side of the entrance to my cul de sac. (That’s a fancy word for a dead end–street.)

So I ripped up some wiring, and punctured two tires- Yeah. My parents wouldn’t let me drive their car after that.

FYI, I am not suggesting you do ANY of this. This is just a fun article showing the steps- in reverse- of how I had my very first mishap driving. Trust me, we’ve all been there at one point or another. And yes, PLEASE go get your vision checked if this has happened to you. I sincerely hope it hasn’t.

Drive safe, America!

-Molly Catherine ❤

 

4 Things That I Didn’t Expect About Adulthood

Hey all! Happy Friday- I bet everyone is BEYOND ecstatic to get out of classes and sleep in, relax, and have fun. I’ll mostly be doing schoolwork, and sleeping (thankfully!) and if I’m lucky, I may be able to squeeze in an episode or two of Supernatural…

Anyway, I’d thought I’d make a post about what it feels like to be a college student, and more importantly, what it feels like to be an adult. I wish I could tell you I didn’t feel any different, but in some aspects, I really do. These may be true for you, or maybe it is completely different.

  1. You have more obligations, and feel the need to commit:

OK, since I started college, I’ve had a ton of different assignments ranging from creative essays to projects that require a ton of prior planning. As I’ve had to organize all of the due dates, and outlines, I realized that I had gotten way better at keeping track of my files, and assignments. I was honestly a bit of a mess in high school…really. I needed a file cabinet…desperately. Thank god there’s a Staples near campus!

2. The homework in college isn’t rocket science. There’s just…more.

I thought when I stepped into my first college classroom, I thought writing essays and mathematical equations would suddenly turn into problems I couldn’t solve. I was thinking complicated, stressful and unimaginable types of work that I would have to work hours on end to solve. When you get to college, the homework isn’t a million times harder (Unless you’re actually majoring in Rocket Science or Engineering.) it just accumulates faster.  The due dates are spaced out, but turning assignments in on time is a lot more crucial. Plus, exams count for a high percent of your grade…unfortunately.

3. There’s less time for the “fun stuff.”

As I said, there is work to do for class, so not only is it amazing I am actually still trying to keep up with this blog, but it’s kind of a bummer that I don’t have time for other activities I want to do. I love being able to plan my day, but I still have schoolwork and other jobs I am required to do unfortunately.

4. Surprisingly, I didn’t realize how much more I am much more in control of the ‘little things.”

This is one of the best feelings, despite all of the weight being put on us young adults to make the right decisions. There’s no, “Hey mom, can I go out this Friday?” Here’s my cliche: ‘Ya’ just do it!’ A few months into my first semester of college I wanted to dye my hair a few shades darker, (No pun intended. Just no.) and for a second I was like, “Oh wait, my mother said-” Nope, wrong! I laughed so hard at myself for forgetting that I was an actual adult. I mean, I was responsible for paying for the color, but ultimately the choice was mine to go through with it. (You may notice that I had helicopter parents.)

Whether you spontaneously buy a motorcycle, or leave for a 10 month backpacking across Europe, these major and minor decisions are all up to you.

As a kid, people always told me that being an adult was overrated; and quite frankly, it TOTALLY isn’t! We now have the chance to amazing things with our lives. We can travel, make mistakes and get stuck in random skeevy places on accident, and discover that maybe we aren’t as observant as we had thought. Good and bad things happen to everyone. Even though the responsibility is on us, that’s also a really great thing. Now, when we do something great, it won’t be added to our high school resume.

It will finally be classified as life experience. Our life experience.

So make it count, and give em’ Hell.

XO,

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Why I Don’t Support Kavanaugh As A Supreme Court Justice

Hey everyone,

I know that this is a touchy subject for many people, but with the #metoo movement still fresh, and the major issue of preventing sexual assault today, it is important to speak up and voice our opinions. It is also crucial to know who is representing out country, and even more importantly, what those people stand for.

As you may know, Brett Kavanaugh was nominated and confirmed for the position of a Supreme Court Justice. As he may have “highly qualified” from an academic standpoint according to the president, many are questioning what kind of person he is morally, and furthermore investigating the sexual assault allegations Dr. Christine Blasey Ford came forward and spoke about.

I do not believe that anyone who as been accused of sexual assault should be allowed a position of such authority, especially when it involves making major legal decisions. Supreme Court Justices are representing our country, and making decisions that will shape how the people people of the USA and other countries perceive us, and how we function as a society.

Even though the allegations against Kavanaugh were not able to be proven, it is important to see that he was accused by three different women and the fact that this allegation was indeed reported is enough for me to question his morals.

The questions that I think people should be asking are not necessarily specific to the Kavanaugh VS Ford trial, but ask ourselves if we are comfortable with the choices that these leaders are going to be making. America is supposed to stand for freedom, and the right to choose your own path in life. It is supposed to give people a say in the society in which we live in. Even I feel that we as a country have not done our best, I hope that in the future, we can and will do better.

For anyone who has been through any sort of sexual assault or traumatic experience, you are not alone. You are not required to reveal details or tell anyone what happened if you do not want to; but if you are ready, there are people that want to listen and help.

Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-4673

Boston Rape Crisis Center: 800-841-8371

Let me know what you think about Kavanaugh VS Ford in the comments!

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Five Things I Irrevocably Love

Hey all, Happy Monday! It is the first week in October…and we’re finally at Columbus Day Weekend! How many cups of coffee did it take to get YOU through the week?  It’s a good thing I don’t drink coffee anymore….I’m not sure how my body would survive if I did.

This weeks listicle is actually an assignment from one of the classes I am a Teachers’ Assistant in. Today I’m gonna do a simple list of five things I really love.

I LOVE…

1. Fried Clams!!

I am a Boston girl, what did you expect?

2. My Friends

No, I don’t love fried clams more than my friends, so oddly this should probably be listed as #1…

3. Basketball.

Ever since I stepped into my high school’s gym and shot my first free throw, it stuck with me. I better get to #4 before I go on a rant about how love the Warriors…

4. THE WARRIORS!

Okay, I have this under control, I’ve got this… Steph Curry is AWESOME!!! THE NBA ROCKS PEOPLE- GO, FIGHT WIN!

5. The Ocean

I love taking trips to the beach, even though I haven’t been down to the shore in a while.

 

I haven’t had much time to write about topics I actually want to write about, but I’m gonna keep posting as much as I can. Hopefully, I can get some politically debatable topics in here eventually!

XOXO Always,

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Here’s My Top 3 Moments from High School

High school has been one of the best times of my life. The friends I made will forever impact me, and remind me of what amazing dreams we started to create. I loved nearly every moment… I’ll be honest- there were times where I wished for something else then- and got caught up in the idea. High school was the impossible combination; oh-so simple, and impossibly stressful. Basketball games were rushes of excitement I lived for, and the classes I took were bundles of nerves set on wondering if I’d get into college. But the little memories in between are the ones that really matter. These ones mean the most to me:

  1. The first shot I made in a basketball game:  

I started playing basketball my junior year. At first, I wanted to quit. Thankfully, the team kept my spirits high. They told me not to give up- and I am so glad I didn’t. The next two years would be led by practices, drills, and improving our skills. Ironically, my first ‘official’ basket didn’t actually occur until the pre-season tournament senior year. I was so pumped to get to the school I forgot my glasses at home. The coach called me to sub in, and I couldn’t say no; so I took a knee and got in the game. A few minutes in, a teammate passed me the ball. I heard Katie on the other side, but I took the chance and shot the ball. Everything had seemed to move in slow motion. My heart was pounding, and my stomach dropped. I didn’t think I would make it…until I heard the swoosh. Everyone cheered, I couldn’t wipe the smile off of my face. I stayed in the game for a few more moments, and played my hardest. I can’t forget how everything seemed just right in that moment…the feeling was an indescribable kind of amazing.

Side note: I was missing my glasses for the entirety of that game. My dad finally brought my glasses during the break before the fourth quarter… I really should get contacts.

2. All The Moments I Spent With My Friends

I transferred to my beloved high school at the start of junior year. I was determined to make it the best year that I could- that was a promise I succeeded in keeping. I met my four best friends that year. We all played basketball, and spent some pretty amazing times together. From running to get Chinese food in a rainstorm, and the sleepovers on New Years and parties…I’ll always love my high school buddies- We had some pretty damn good times that we’ll never forget.

3. Graduation:

It marked freedom of different kinds; not only the freedom of where we wanted to travel, and make a career of in the world, but the ability to choose what we wanted to learn. We could choose college, or choose to go off into the world, and learn some valuable lessons outside the classroom. We were hopeful and ready for the future, and were ready to find out about ourselves. I had always fantasized about that one moment where I received my diploma, but when they called my name, and I stepped boldly across the stage, I couldn’t think about anything else but that moment altogether. I felt like everything was falling into place, and it would. Everything was perfect.

High School was great, and I have so many amazing memories to hold onto, but now I am in college. I can find ways to improve as a person, and live my life to the fullest. These memories I hold onto will last a lifetime, and prepare me to accomplish anything I can dream of.

Love always,

Molly Catherine ❤