12/20/2016

It has been way too long but I’m almost finished with my last paper of the semester.  I’ve been working on a research paper on Congress and their powers in foreign policy.  U.S. politics has become so polarizing that Congress makes it impossible for the president to succeed in their role.  Anyway.

It’s been so long so I guess I’ll start out by saying that I think I have changed since I last posted on here.  I’m no longer interested in going out and partying every weekend and getting drunk with friends.  I don’t really know what I want to do on the weekends but I know I’m just tired of going out every weekend.  This semester I’ve focused a lot more on my studies and have spent more time in the library on Friday and Saturday nights.  For the past month or so, on Friday’s and Saturday’s, I’ve gone to the library to finish all my work and study until they close; after which, I end up going to the REC to workout.  That is what my weekends look like now.  Every Sunday morning I go to the Root Note downtown to study; it’s nice and refreshing to study off campus.

I’m 21 now!  It’s nice to order drinks at restaurants with my ID now, haha.  What else… Senate has been going well, I guess.  I advocated like hell for my constituents a few weeks ago on a resolution that supported students wanting Hmong language courses to be offered with a professor in the classroom as opposed to long-distance learning.  We didn’t get out of that meeting until 10:30 or so, and we debated that resolution for what seemed liked two hours.  It was exhausting that me and a few other senators made amendment after amendment and yet, to some senators, it still wasn’t enough even though all we were doing was supporting our students.

On a somewhat related note, there’s been this girl who joined Senate this semester and although she is kind of quiet, we’ve started getting to know each other better and she is very cool.  It’s unfortunate that we just started hanging out before finals and since everyone is leaving for winter break we won’t see each other for a while, but I hope we’ll still hang out when we get back.  Vamos a ver.

I miss writing and I want to continue with it.  Once a week I’ll be updating this.

A New Diet

I’ve started a new plan to eat healthier and part of that includes cutting chips, cake, candy, ice cream, chocolate, pretty much any junk food you can think of is out of my diet and has been for the past two weeks.  The results?  I feel better, more energized and I’m not tired from not doing anything.  What I mean is that last semester, I would go to my classes and at the end of the day I would feel exhausted even though I didn’t do shit the entire day.  But now, I still feel exhausted because I ran 3 miles and sprinted around the track earlier that morning.  Eating healthier has improved my mood as well.  Some of my friends have already told me that I look slimmer!  It’s only been 3 weeks and there are noticeable results!  And it feels amazing!

I’ve also done my best to cut bread out of my diet and I’m going to try the whole “not eating anything 4 hours before bed” thing.  I have also decided to go a week without eating any meat.  My friend Matt has done it for 3 weeks now and he feels lighter now.  I’m curious to see how it will affect me.  I started on Sunday (2/14) and so far it’s going pretty well.  I just find myself hungrier more often but I just go to Whit and eat a healthy salad.  I’m not struggling now so I’m considering going 2 weeks without meat.

I’ll update in a week or so.

Just Do It

So I’ve started running and it feels amazing!  Two weeks ago I decided I was going to run everyday and I love it!  I started out by running just a mile and then this week I started running for 20 minutes.  In that time I usually run a little over a mile and a half.  In addition, I sprint around the track for about 10 minutes and then finish my workout running uphill one mile on the treadmill.  This week was a little harder; I felt tired and my ankle wasn’t doing too well.  I woke up this morning feeling energized so I ran, of course, but this time I ran for 25 minutes!  I know that’s just 5 more minutes to the 20 but for whatever reason I feel good about it!  I’m going to start running for 30 minutes everyday on Monday and hopefully each week I’ll add 10 more minutes.

I want to get back in shape and burn fat but lifting weights wasn’t doing anything for me.  I didn’t give it enough of a chance though but whatever.  The one workout I loved was squatting and cleaning, those were fun!  I’ll still spend some time in the weight room but I’m only going to do pull-ups, pushups, and back stuff.  Hopefully by the end of the school year I’ll have a nice beach body to go to the beach!  I’m feeling good and I look forward to this workout!

Muhammad Part 1

I’ve been reading a very good book called No god but God by Reza Aslan and he talks about the history, evolution and future of Islam.  He talks about a couple of good stories about the Prophet Muhammad that I would like to share.  I was raised as a Catholic and even though I don’t practice it, I still identify as one.  I am genuinely interested in Islam and am always interested in learning more about the religion.

The Prophet Muhammad, was not very well liked by a group in Mecca called the Quraysh and one night they decided that, the next night, they would appoint one man from every family to enter his home at night and stab him with a sword simultaneously killing him.  Muhammad learned about this plan the night before, so he was prepared.  The plan?  His friend, Ali, slept in Muhammad’s bed that night pretending to be him while Muhammad and Abu Bakr (Muhammad’s father-in-law) snuck out of the house and hid in a cave.  the Quraysh were angry when they found Ali in the bed and not Muhammad, so they put a bounty on Muhammad’s head.  For three days, Muhammad and Abu Bakr hid in the cave and once the Quraysh’s hunt for him had settled down, Muhammad and Abu Bakr left the cave at night into the desert returning to their home Yathrib.

I’m not exactly sure why I found this story so interesting but I just did.  Something that may be interesting to know is that right before this, Muhammad’s wife Khadija and his uncle/protector Abu Talib died.  Abu Talib was essential in Muhammad’s survival at the time.  Abu Talib was the reason why Muhammad was not attacked for many years; he was the reason why he could preach and pray in public in the city of Mecca; and Khadija always supported him.  Losing those two was a huge blow to Muhammad yet he still persevered.

While reading this story on a plane, I simply found it remarkable.  This may be boring or lame, but I do enjoy these readings and I will continue to write about it.  There is more to come.

Miami

When I was younger, I would always say that I wanted to live in California or New York or Spain but when I went to Miami, that was the first time that I actually believed I could live there.  In the five days I was in Miami, I could actually see myself moving there after graduation.  I realized how tired I was of the snow and how much I really wanted to live by South Beach.

When I went to visit my family in Singapore, I also said that I wanted to live there but the truth is that it won’t happen.  It’s not right for me.  Yeah it’s a nice place to visit time to time but I can’t live there.  Again, when I was younger I would always say I wanted to live here or there but I don’t think I was every serious.  Miami was different.

After I graduate, I’m going to move to Miami.  Even if I don’t have a job there yet, I’ll find one somewhere.  I just know that Miami is where I want to end up.  It’s a beautiful city, it’s close to Puerto Rico and I know there are plenty of jobs there.  I’ll find something.  But for now, I have to focus on doing well in school so I can secure a job (hopefully in Miami) after college.

Time with the fam

So I just got back from my vacation with my Puerto Rican family on a cruise in the Caribbean for nine days!  It was probably one of the best Christmas vacations I’ve ever had thus far!  I reconnected with my grandmother, my cousins and so many more!  It was exactly what I needed.

The day after my last final, we flew to Miami and stayed there for three days just exploring South Beach and the downtown area before we met up with our family.  South Beach Miami was so beautiful!  I could definitely see myself living in Miami sometime soon… I’m sure of this.  Anyway, my family arrived two days later and at first, it was awkward.  It had been eight or nine years since I’ve last seen them and I kind of forgot what they were like, so I didn’t really know what to expect.  We went for dinner that first night and that was when I realized how much fun they really were.  We all had drinks that night and we caught up for a couple of hours but we soon went to bed because we had to board the cruise the next day.

Our first night on the cruise was fun!  Family members bought me drinks (during the entire cruise they were buying me drinks) and we talked and had a good time.  I was hungry and went to the buffet and ran into three of my cousins eating dinner.  We got to know each other better…we talked about sandwiches and stuff and it was fun.

I really enjoyed how around 12 or 1 o’clock, we would start drinking haha.  Someone in the family would invite me to a beer and we would continue drinking beers until our 6 o’clock dinner at the Villa Rosa.  Almost every night at dinner, I would have a mojito with my mom or some sort of drink (by this point, I’ve had at least 6 or 7 beers, but we paced ourselves).  After dinner, we would go to the bars and drink some more!  Whenever we were all together at the bar talking and drinking and playing games, those were my favorite memories of the cruise!  I had the time of my life!

The islands we went to were Jamaica, Cayman Islands, Cozumel Mexico, Belize, and the Bahamas.  I had the most fun in Cozumel, Mexico though.  But again, the most fun was after dinner at the bars when we were all together; it’s the family and the people you are with that makes anything special.

I needed this vacation to connect with my family from Puerto Rico.  I learned a lot of Spanish in the nine days I was with them and I am looking forward to visiting them in Puerto Rico soon!

20 Years

So today is my 20th birthday and I’m feeling good…fyi…I’m under the influence of some alcohol lol (college, right?).  It’s been a crazy ride..mainly these past two years.  High school was boring because I just went to school, came home, did homework, played tennis and that was about it.  But college has been a completely different experience!  Life is good, I’ve made some amazing friends along with some lifetime memories!  I’m surprised I’m still alive, haha just kidding.  But really, it’s been amazing and I can’t thank my family and friends enough for all the support they’ve provided me!

I never thought I would be where I am today.  When I was in elementary/middle school, I always thought I would be studying medicine or something like that.  But here I am, majoring in political science and minoring in communications!  I probably have three and a half more years here at UWL but honestly, I’m in no hurry to graduate.  I really want to enjoy my time here.

Remember that story I mentioned in my last post?  About that girl I?? Well, two weeks later I made my move!  I learn from my mistakes, I always make sure I don’t make the same mistake twice!  It was crazy!  Finals are next week and we won’t be seeing each other for about six weeks…so I’m not sure if anything is going to happen between us…we’ll see what happens.

My mom visited me today!  We talked and caught up and all that.  Looks like after our cruise, I’ll be going back to Miami to fly back to Puerto Rico with my grandmother!  It’s been years since I’ve spent quality time with my relatives in Puerto Rico, so I’m very excited to spend time there!

All in all, I’m happy with life right now.  Until next time!

A Break

There was this beautiful girl that I was sort of hanging out with all night and I knew she was into me but I didn’t make a move.  We were at my friends party and later that night she was in my room, just the two of us, and I didn’t make the move.  Damn.  I put so much value on her looks and I let that take over me and as a result…idk I got nervous and screwed up.    That hasn’t happened to me since..middle school I think…shit.  But it’s all good cuz I’ve learned from it and it’s not going to happen again.

Anyways, I had a really nice Thanksgiving break with my family.  My cousin from UW Stout came to visit but other than her it was just me, mom and dad, and my little sister.  My break was super chill as I just watched tv with my parents.  My dad got me hooked on Master of None with Aziz Ansari.  Damn that’s a good show.

I only have three more weeks of this semester before we go to Miami to meet up with my mom’s side of the family.  We’re going on a cruise ship for eight days.  I just want to get this semester over with and chill for the rest of my Christmas break.  But for now I just have to work hard for these finals that way I can actually enjoy my winter break.

 

Syrian Refugees…

Over the past few years, there has been a crisis happening in Syria because of the several wars going on between Bashar al-Assad, ISIS, the Free Syrian Army, the U.S., Russia and now France.  Thousands of innocent lives , mostly women and children, are just trying to flee a war-torn country and many governors and politicians in the U.S. want to prevent them from coming onto our soil.

A couple weeks ago, ISIS attacked Paris, France by targeting a concert theatre, a soccer stadium and several restaurants killing at least 129 people.  Eight of the nine suspects have been confirmed as EU citizens, the ninth suspect was found with a fake Syrian passport.  As a result, US politicians have become more paranoid of Syrian refugees than ever before.  France, the victim of these attacks, has just opened their borders to accept 30,000 more Syrian refugees.  They understand that thousands of innocent families and lives are just trying to live a normal and safe life but because of how things have played out between ISIS, the Assad regime and US and Russian airstrikes, they realize that is not possible in their home.  It sickens me that there are adults who do not understand that these refugees fear the same people we are afraid of.  The majority of these Syrian refugees are women and children.  And we want to deny a safe home for them to live normal lives?  By doing so, those families will die in Syria and Iraq.

I was brought to tears by this just a few weeks ago.  I was overwhelmed by how the events unfolded.  I am extremely passionate about human rights and social justice and seeing how these refugees are being treated…it truly saddens me.  What I find most stressful is the fact that there is nothing I can do to help them.  I know there are thousands seeking refuge, seeking a new home, a new life yet we have all these elected ‘leaders’ in power and they don’t seem to care at all.  I was overwhelmed, I was stressed, and I was tired.  There was nothing I could do.

What these politicians ignore is that denying entry for these refugees is exactly what ISIS wants.  By forcing them to stay there, we allow ISIS to roam around poor refugee camps throughout Syria and recruit new soldiers, the majority of whom are young boys.  Hearing of these families being torn apart again brings tears to my eyes.  The most I can do now is educate others around me about what is going on.

I’m not going to lie, I’m scared for what is going to happen in the future for those living in Syria and Iraq.  I want to help them.  I feel like I need to help them, and I will.  But for the time being, I should focus on my schoolwork, extracurriculars and if I have time, educate on the side.

I am not finished with this post, trust me.  This is a topic that I will continue to touch base on.  This is just the start.

Pilot

So this is my first post here on WordPress.  Until now, I have been handwriting on paper so consider this my ‘journal,’ I look forward to writing on here in the future.  I’m not exactly sure who reads this, and I promise, I will not write anything that will get me into trouble later on.  I will stay.. somewhat professional yet have fun doing so.  Also, I’m not too sure what I am going to write about; although, given the current events I do have a pretty good idea, but whatever I write about, I am looking to improve.  I’m looking forward to sharing my thoughts and ideas on here.  I title this ‘Pilot’ because it is my first post, and in many television series, they name the first episode ‘Pilot,’ so I thought it fit the occasion.