Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Downtown Fort Myers!

Our second Colloquium field trip was to Downtown Fort Myers. We were originally supposed to go to Fort Myers Waste Management, but they cancelled on us last minute.  I was really happy because I was so disappointed when I found out we wouldn't be going to Downtown Fort Myers on one of our field trips.

To be completely honest, this was one of the BEST experiences I've ever had in a class at FGCU.  The field trip was so much fun, and while it wasn't directly related to the environment, it was very educational.

We split into groups of three and we each had a different task to complete.  Ours was to learn about the businesses in the area.  Other topics were to learn about the nature/wildlife, to learn about the economy and it's effect on the area, to learn how the businesses use media to advertise, and one group even learned about  architecture.  Our group walked around and talked to businesses about how the construction in the area has effected business.  Needless to say, it was eye opening, and I learned a lot about Downtown that I never knew.  

Now that the construction is pretty much done, the area looks absolutely beautiful!  It's really sad that the area is so empty because it's such a great area!

Caloosahatchee Bridge:

Downtown Fort Myers:

Saturday, June 26, 2010

World Cup 2010: USA vs. Ghana

Ghana beats USA in overtime 2-1!!!!

Knowing that USA is a 2nd half team, I truly expected them to win and knock out Ghana.

This is a repeat of the 2006 World Cup where Ghana beat USA 2-1.

Congratulations Ghana on winning another game and moving on.  You're making Africa proud!!!

USA put up an incredible fight and I'm really proud of their performance.  They've improved since the last time I watched them, and I'm sure that they'll be even better in 2014.

I can just see it now: USA wins 2014 World Cup!! :)

USA or Ghana?

I posted something on this blog and on Twitter about talking trash and handling criticism.  My exact quote was:

"Just because you think that something is stupid or worthless doesn't mean it's not important or awesome to someone else.  If you're going to talk trash about things you hate, you better be able to handle criticism about the things that are most important to you.  Because if you can't, then shut the hell up."

As most of you know, the World Cup is going on right now.  I played soccer my entire childhood, and I LOVE the World Cup.  I look forward to it more than I look forward to the Olympics.  But here's the thing that shocks mostly everyone I know: I'm not a huge USA fan.

I don't know why I'm not a fan.  I just never have been.  I loved the Women's US National team, but never the Men's.  I think it's because, compared to the rest of the world, they were never that great.  My favorite teams have always been Italy and England.  But next on the list is Germany and the United States.  They are in my Top 5, but they're not my favorite.

I've been receiving A LOT of criticisms over Twitter.  People have said that I don't care about the things important to them, that I'm being unpatriotic, or that I'm heartless for not wanting USA to win.  The thing is, I do want to see USA win.  But while they're playing one of my favorite teams, they're not the team that I'm cheering for.  Sure, Ghana isn't one of my favorite teams.  But they are from the host continent and the last of the African teams standing.  So yeah, I kind of wanted them to win.

I'm not trying to be rude about how I feel towards the USA team.  I don't hate them, and I've never ran around saying they sucked.  The only truly negative thing I said about the US team was that I didn't think Landon Donovan was cute (and that he was old).  If you said that you thought my favorite Italian player was ugly, I could handle it.

All I said a month ago was that if you're going to dish out criticism, you better be able to handle it. And I can handle it.  I know that the USA team is important to A LOT of people, and I respect that.  That also means that people need to respect (not like) that I like other teams.

I'm sorry if I've offended ANYONE with my Twitter comments during the USA vs. Ghana game.  I wasn't intentionally trying to upset anyone.  But I did, and now I'm accepting the fault for it.  I hope people will forgive me.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Neutrogena Skin ID Review

I recently purchased my customized Neutrogena Skin ID regimen.  For those of you that haven't heard of it, Neutrogena Skin ID is a set of personalized acne products picked just for you after you fill out a skin care survey.  I had been contemplating getting it for awhile, and after I found a 50% off coupon (on the starter kit) I decided to try it.  After all, it was cheaper than going out and buying more of the AcneFree stuff I used now.

Let's start with the pros.  For the $18.95 I paid (including shipping), I did get a lot of stuff - my 3 piece starter kit, a travel sized bag, an acne spot treatment, body wash, and shine-control blotting sheets.  It was definitely a steal!  The body was alone was priced at $13!  And it was a full-sized bottle!  I thought I'd be getting a trial size.  And the face pads (part of my customized regimen) had 60 pads in the container which is comparable to the size of other face pads like Stridex or Oxy.

Okay, so that's all the good I have to say.

Upon opening it, I was disappointed to see how small all of the other products were.  The face wash was 4oz, the all-over acne treatment was 2oz, and the spot treatment was 0.5oz.  Also, I looked at all of the active ingredients and everything had either 2% salicylic acid or 2% benzoyl peroxide.  How's that any different than other acne treatments?  I could go to the drug store and by Oxy Pads or Clearasil for $5...and they'd be double the size!!

I opened up the body wash, and I was even more disappointed.  It had the same color, smell, and consistency of the Neutrogena Oil-Free Stress Control Body Wash I bought two weeks ago!  Basically, Neutrogena just slapped a "Skin ID" label on it and doubled the price of their Stress Control product.  Disappointing.

After putting it on my face, I was even more disappointed.  After putting on the cleanser and all-over acne treatment my face got really tight and dry.  My face was so tight that it was hard to move it!!  I've never felt anything like it before.

So far, I'm EXTREMELY disappointed with Skin ID.  I'll be calling next week to cancel my membership (as I planned to do anyway), and I may even return it.  I have never been so disappointed with an acne product before.  I use this kind of stuff when I have really bad break outs, but I wouldn't trust Skin ID even if my life depended on it.  I think I'll just stick to AcneFree.  That stuff works wonders and doesn't dry out my skin...or make it feel tight!!

No, I would not recommend this product to a friend.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

It's over now

The impeachment proceedings are pretty much over (minus the one that still needs to happen next week).  It's time to put this all behind us and move forward.  

We have all gone through a very tough time, and tension is at its peak right now.  But it's very important that people respect each other.  It's important that those accused hold no grudges against the accusers and other people who thought they were guilty.  It's important that students hold no grudges against Senators that may have felt differently than they did.  It's important for Senators not to hold grudges against the accusers for putting them through this.  All around, it's just important that we respect each other and the opinions that each of us has.  We're all people, and we all deserve love and respect.

Right now we should all be reflecting on what happened and how we can learn from it.  I know that's what I'm doing.  I hope that something like this never happens again.  The decisions I made tonight were the hardest I've ever had to make in Senate.  I felt like at any minute I could lose a friend, and it was hard for me.

Some people in Student Government, including myself, have been receiving threats from members of SG and from members of the public.  It's disheartening to me that people would take it to that level.  I was so scared tonight because I didn't know what was going to happen to me.  I know several others felt the same way.

I don't expect everyone to LIKE the decisions that I made tonight, but I do expect people to RESPECT them.  The only thing we can do now is move forward.  It's time to get back to business and do the job we were elected/appointed to do - represent the Student Body of Florida Gulf Coast University.

Monday, June 14, 2010

One decision can in fact change everything

As a Student Government representative, it's my job to listen to the opinions of the student body.  With the current situation in Student Government, EVERYONE has an opinion, and they make sure that I know their opinion.  I'm all for listening to the students, but to be honest, it's become extremely overwhelming.  This whole thing has stressed me out beyond belief, and I really can't handle it much longer.  Come tomorrow night, the decisions will be made.  There's no changing those decisions.  But that won't stop people from continuing to talk.  And either way, some people won't be happy.

When I joined Senate, I knew that the decisions I made would be questioned.  People would always ask "why did you vote against this?" or "why did you vote for that?"  I was prepared to defend my decisions and explain myself to students.  But I never thought that my values as a human being would questioned.  Over the past week, people have questioned what kind of person I am for the opinion that I have.  Friends have told me that they wouldn't want to be my friend if I voted to impeach one of their friends.

Right now I have to put aside my friendships with people and vote based on what I think is right.  That's hard for a lot of people to understand...including the people involved.  I am friends with every single person going through this impeachment process, and the decisions that I make won't be personal.  Despite what some of the people involved and students believe, I have absolutely nothing to gain by this.  In fact, I truly do have everything to do.  These are my friends and regardless of the decisions I make, I fear that I will lose some of them.  In fact, I think I already have.  It weighs heavily on my heart and is not something I am happy about, but we need to be held accountable for our actions.  It's something we talked about at Flight School, and the majority of us believed that as SG representatives we need to hold ourselves to higher standards and be held accountable for what we do.

No matter what happens tomorrow night, reputations have been shattered.  All of us in Student Government are going to be seen in a different light - whether we're the one's being accused, the accusers, the ones voting (Senators), members of the Executive Branch, or members of the Judicial Branch.  Things are going to be different from now on.  Tomorrow night will determine how different things will really be.

As for my decision - If I can look in the mirror tomorrow night and be happy with the person staring back at me, then I'll know that I've made the right choice.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Twilight Fever!

The most popular names of 2009 pay tribute to a growing phenomenon in America: The Twilight Saga.

Don't believe me?  I took a screenshot of the Social Security Administration's website as proof.

Too bad there's no Edward on here.  That would make the whole thing even better.  

You know what?  I hope some of these Jacob's and Isabella's meet (and even date) in the future.  And I hope that their parents not only explain who they were named after, but all of the other characters in the books as well.  That way when they do meet each other, it will be a real life Twilight Saga moment...minus the vampire and werewolf secrets.

I seriously cannot wait.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

When did I sign up for this?!

Student Government has always been full of drama.  It's full of situations where you have to put friendships aside.  But tonight, the drama was taken to a whole new level.

For those of you that don't know what happened, here's the basics:  Six Student Government representatives were allegedly smoking marijuana at our annual Student Government retreat (which we call "Flight School.")

Tonight at Senate, our Senate President resigned from office.  The other five will go through the impeachment process at our next Senate meeting.

I won't go into any more detail because as of now everything else is hearsay.  And whether or not I believe it and how I will vote is irrelevant.  And it's not even what I want to talk about.

Tonight was intense and emotional.  I honestly thought I was going to walk out of that room and I was going to get beaten or yelled at.  And while I was still in the chambers, I did get yelled at by a friend of one of the Senators in question.  It's one of the hardest situations I've had to deal with, but I held myself together and didn't let them get the best of me.

I wanted to resign tonight.  When I joined Student Government, I joined because I wanted to voice the opinions of my constituents.  I wanted to inform students on what goes on in SG, and I wanted to contribute to this University.  But lately, it feels like all we ever do is fight.  We bicker and fight about little things, and sometimes I don't even think we scratch the surface on some student issues.  I didn't join SG to get yelled at or to be threatened.  I never thought I'd have to put friendships on the line and make decisions that would literally change people's lives forever.  I didn't sign up for this part of Student Government, but I'm forced to deal with it.  And when I start something, I don't quit.  So for now I'm going to push through it.  I feel that if I can get through this, I can get through a lot of other things as well.

This whole situation has been eating me up inside.  And with it being on the news and students asking me about it, it's impossible to ignore.  I want to give them the facts, but there are not many facts right now.  There's opinions and hearsay flying around.

I know whatever decisions I make in two weeks will be the hardest decisions I'll ever have to make in Senate.  And whatever decision I choose, I want students to trust that I'm making the right decision.

To quote The Fray: "Sometimes the hardest thing and the right thing are the same..."

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

New Jersey

Here's 10 (of the many) things I miss and love about New Jersey:

10. Pine Creek Miniature Golf (no put-put here!)
9. Going to the shore (Cape May, Seaside Heights, Wildwood, etc.)
8. Enjoying food at the boardwalk (cheese fries pizza at Wildwood!!)
7. Cream King
6. Rec Soccer (including indoor!) & Travel Soccer
5. Day trips to New York City
4. Heavenly Ham
3. WaWa
2. Six Flags Great Adventure

NutriSystem Review

I've been on NutriSystem since Wednesday (May 26th), and I think I've formed a solid opinion on it.

Simply put: I'm far from impressed.

The longer version: I thought NutriSystem would be great.  It got great reviews online - both for the great tasting food and for the amount of weight people were losing.  I've been trying to lose 20-25 pounds for awhile now, and the same thing happens every time: I get off to a great start and then I get too confident and feel I can cheat and things go downhill.  So I thought that NutriSystem would be different because the food is already portioned out for you; all you need to do is add fruits and veggies.  Seems simple, right?  Well, it is.

The problem is the food itself.  I absolutely hate it.  Maybe it's because I'm young and I don't enjoy the same foods as people who are older.  Either way, I cannot stand a majority of the food.  I have loved every single breakfast and dessert I've had, and I've had some awesome dinners (mainly the chicken breast and hamburgers. soooo good!)  But a majority of the lunches & dinners are not that good to me.  I've gotten to the point where I don't even want to eat anymore because just thinking about the food makes me sick.  It's gotten that bad.  I hate vegetables, but I would rather eat a can of vegetables than eat those foods.  I am not even exaggerating.

As far as the weight goes: I haven't lost any more a week on NutriSystem than I was before (and I'm, exercising more now than I was before).  The only difference is that before I got to eat foods that I actually liked.  I'm really bummed out by this because I really, really hoped something would finally work and give me that jump start I needed.  It has taught me a lot, though.  I've learned that you can spice up meals by adding fruits & veggies.  And I learned what types of foods should compromise each meal.

I'm going to finish up these next three weeks on NutriSystem and then go from there.  My mom tells me to just deal with it and eat the food, but I'm not going to eat food that I don't like.  I'll eat what I can deal with, but I'm not going to eat the food "just to eat it."  That's a waste of calories.  If I can't manage to stomach one of the meals, I'll substitute it with a salad.  I just need to get through these next three weeks.

Basically: No, I would not recommend NutriSystem to a friend.