Friday, May 13, 2011


"Acción de Gracias!" That's Spanish for "Happy Thanksgiving!" This is a time of the year in which my family and friends from all over the state come and visit us and partake in a pot-luck style bonanza of food in which we all bring our favorite dishes. Typically, this event is held at our house and my mother cooks up her famously seasoned Turkey that is so moist, it keeps everyone coming back and travelling all the miles, year after year. This is a traditional event that is certainly based around the food and because everyone brings their own favorite dishes, the variety is an endless row of salty, sweet and even combinations of those two flavors. It's an event that  brings our family together, and many friends of the family as well.

In addition to the tasty Turkey that my mom cooks every year, she also makes Tamales. This is a dish that veers against the normal "Thanksgiving" type foods and falls back on the Mexican roots  that I have in my blood and brings a bit of a Spanish flair to our holiday tradition of Thanksgiving at our house. It's great that these unique combinations of food are served together on such a joyous day in our house full of people we love and care about. It's foods that bring our family together. It keeps us all close and coming back, year after year, after year. While my mom is full Mexican, my Dad is white, so being part Mexican really gives me the appreciation of these spicy Spanish foods that I've grown up with my mom creating my entire life. I love to be able to enjoy the more traditional, "American" type Thanksgiving turkey (and the huge amounts of other foods my family brings) as well as the Tamales. Some people may think of it as an odd combination of foods to be served on Thanksgiving day, but it's a combination that I (and the rest of my family) have grown to love and look forward to time and time again.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Communities: The Internet

The world wide web, more commonly referred to as the internet, is a community, the largest in the world. It is a community in which, today, over 2 billion people have access to - this is a number that was nearly half that just a few years ago. Not only is it the largest, but it is the fastest growing community in the world. This community is held together more obviously by a worldwide network consisting of interconnected computers , but the most important aspect that holds it together is the 2 billion people who use it. Without these people, there would be no internet as it exists today. The internet is used for a plethora of reasons, nearly unlimited. From researching the latest information about a disease or illness someone in their family has contracted; staying in touch and communicating with my friends that are thousands of miles away -- on the other side of the planet; or something as simple as finding out what the weather is to be like that day to better determine what I am going to wear or if there will be traffic on my way to work, or school that day. These are just a few reasons I and so many others use the world wide web. The internet, while mostly used in a positive way, however, can also be used in a negative way that can create tensions or difficulties to some of it's users, including myself. For example, people with high knowledge of computer skills can hack into a computer network, such as an online banking system, and use the information they get to steal money from those accounts. If this was my bank, it would affect me personally if my information was stolen and potentially jeopardized. More recently, the internet has become a breeding ground for "cyber bullies." This is when someone, mostly kids or teenagers, use the computer to attack or humiliate their peers in school or within their community. Cyber-bullying is a problem that has received national -and- global attention in the past months and it's a problem that is hard to control.

I personally have used the internet since I was about ten years old, this was about the time the internet was becoming very mainstream and was beginning to gain users at a rapid pace. To be completely honest, I have a hard time remembering life without a computer. It's hard to fathom what life would be like today if I didn't have instant access to all of the information the internet holds. I think to myself, "Wow, did I really used have to look up this definition in a book, an actual dictionary?" It's amazing how much information I have available to me with just the click of a mouse or a few keys. I use the information in only positive ways and I feel like I fit in with the community. I have been able to stay in touch with so many friends and family members many miles away and I've been able to better plan my days with something as simple as being able to look up directions to my destination or as I stated above, the weather or traffic. I, like so many others, rely on the internet on a daily basis, in so many ways and I don't foresee myself living without it at anytime in the future.

Monday, April 4, 2011

What's in your purse?

My purse is unorganized to say the very least. A variety of items are scattered along the bottom and my two most prized possessions, my debit card and drivers license, are somewhere within, but typically among the last of items I am able to find. My wallet is loaded with multiple department store credit cards, various gift cards and a ton of photographs of my little brother from high school dances as well as the array of sports he participates in. In addition, within my treasure chest, one would find, gum wrappers, useless receipts, lip-gloss, multiple tubes of chap stick, instant hand sanitizer, free perfume samples, lotions, and a bunch of other junk I could definitely do without.

The contents of my purse construct an image about me that is completely different from the person I am. Among finding my purse, one would think I am a mess and would likely think that if something of mine was to be missing; that it’s not first time that it has been lost. They would portray me as being girly, prude and probably assume that I am in debt because of the vast amount of plastic I have in my name; however, this is not true. These superficial assumptions make me laugh because, although I like to shop and take care of myself, I am a very hard working and responsible young woman with a job that can support my lifestyle. However messy or unorganized my purse may be; as long as I have my drivers license and debit card, I can make it through my day without hesitation. Making sure my purse is organized falls low on my priority list.

The person who may find my purse would be unaware that I have a great job and work full time in the healthcare industry and truly enjoy helping people. They would be unaware that I am attending community college to better myself and expand my education for my future. It would definitely be misinterpreted that I am a very organized individual who only wants to succeed, progress and be a productive member of society. Therefore, any judgments based off the objects in my purse, or anything similar in general, does not give a good representation of who I am or how I should be perceived. It is these mental assessments and assumptions of an individual, without knowing that person, that one makes up shrewd conclusions we call judgement.