Friday, August 25, 2017

My First Giveaway

Hey guys,

As a way to say thank you for reading my posts and for following me on my social media accounts I wanted to do a giveaway. I feel like this is a really simple giveaway but I feel like you have to begin somewhere, right?

What will you win in the giveaway? Well you will receive:

  • 1 4 pack of Pilot G2 Metallic pens
  • 1 bag of Haribo Gold-Bears Gummy Bears
  • 1 3 pack of Trident Watermelon Twist Gum
  • 1 6 pack of Paper Mate Flair Pens
  • 1 Blistex Medicated Mint Balm

I decided to give those items away because

  1. I love different kind of pens, especially Flair Pens
  2. I love candy and gum
  3. Blistex Mint is my favorite 
The giveaway starts tonight and ends on September 26th at 12:00am. You can enter here. Good luck to everyone and thanks again for being a reader and following me on my social media accounts.

<3 Amanda 

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Starting High School Advice 2017-2018

Hey guys,

The school year is slowly coming to a start. I'm not too sure who exactly reads my blog but if you're not starting high school or in high school yourself but know someone who is, send them the link to this post and it might be helpful to them. Even though I graduated a few years ago in 2009, I still remember how nervous I was my first day of high school.  I have complied a few tips for you on starting high school:

  1. Be yourself! You want to make friendships with people to are like you and have the same interests as you. You don't want to pretend you act this way or another or like something that they like when you dislike whatever that is.
  2. You don't have to impress anyone! This goes along with #1 but you go to school to learn and interact with classmates but you shouldn't dress a certain way to impress someone. Not saying don't look cute for your crush though.
  3. Do NOT procrastinate! A good idea is to use a planner to write down all of your homework and tests and quizzes. My high schools (yes, I went to 2) provided agendas for us to use but if your school doesn't, stores like Wal-mart or Target has them.
  4. Don't skip/don't play hooky! Although you might think your Humanities class might be boring and you would rather be somewhere else, just tell yourself that you only have this class for one hour of your day and if you dread going to that class everyday, it is just going to make yourself slack off and you'll end up doing bad in the class and have to take it over.
  5. If you're able to, join a sport team or club! In my freshmen year, I helped with the musical and then my junior year I joined the track and field team and even though I was a terrible runner, I still made some great friends.
I hope you have a great school year regardless of what grade you're entering

<3 Amanda

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Favorite YouTube Channels Pt.3

Hey guys,

I decided that it was time to type up another Favorite YouTube Channels post.  Here are 5 of my favorites. They range from all over! 

Phillips FamBam (YouTube Channel): This family is a great one to watch. The family consists of the parents Danny and Tina, and children Braden, Ashlynn, Ethan, Elijah and Emberlynn. They post a variety of different videos that everyone can enjoy. They post Cook With Me's, Vlogs, Challenges, Hauls, Eat With Me's and much much more. Danny and Tina are such great people to look up to, and you can tell by their videos how much their family love one another. You can find them on their social media sites; Facebook, Instagram, Tina's Twitter and Danny's Twitter. You should definitely go check them out! You won't regret it!

itsmekassidee (YouTube Channel): The first thing that I like about her is that her spelling of her name is unique and I have never seen it spelt with a "K" before. Other than the spelling of her name, I like watching her videos because she is real and show how real life can be. She's married to Cary and they have 2 adorable children; Jensen and Lila. She posts vlogs, hauls and more.  You should check out her social media site; Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and Google Plus.  

The Weiss Life (YouTube Channel): This family consists of Jeff and Melissa (the parents) and Gabrielle, Gracelynn ,Gwyneth ,Gretchen and  Gemma. You could say that Jeff is out numbered but I don't think he minds. They post videos like Build-A-Bear videos, Vlogs, Challenges and much more. The girls also have their own channel, which you can check out by clicking hereTheir social media sites are Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Instagram and Pinterest.

HappilyAHousewife(YouTube Channel): Samantha is married to Matt and they have 3 children, Matthew, Lillian and Joshua. Through her videos I can tell that she is a great mom to her children. She's also really pretty. She posts a variety of videos and they range from Cleaning, Back To School, Grocery Hauls, Planner Videos, and much much more.  She is also a baseball mom. You should check out her social media sites! They are Twitter,Instagram, Google Plus, Facebook and Blog.

Lehoux Family (YouTube Channel): The Lehoux Family is a YouTube family from Canada. One thing that I like about them is that they also show how real life can be. Their family is Brad and Sara, and their children Sophia, Cohen,Nolan and Grayson. Sara has a personal channel as well and you can check it out here. She hasn't posted on that channel in awhile but there are still great videos on that channel. On their main channel, they post vlogs filled with a variety of things. You should check out their social media sites;  Facebook and Instagram.

Let me know down below if you subscribed to any of these channels. They are all great YouTubers!  

<3 Amanda 

Time Management For College


Hey guys,

Even though I am only a few weeks away from completing my bachelor year I still struggle with time management a little bit. My (online) college goes from Wednesdays to Tuesdays at 11:59 pm. We have to get all of our work in by 11:59 pm or it will be considered late. The work that I typically have in a week for 2 courses is:

  • Discussion board where we have to post our initial post and then respond to at least two classmates.
  • Readings 
  • Seminar
  • Journal (depends on the course)
  • Quiz ( depends on the course how many in a course)
  • Assignment (Typically every other week)

This current week though I have 2 discussion boards, 4 responses to do, 2 seminars and readings. This week isn't that bad as in workload. It is 12;21 am on Saturday morning, and all I still have to do is one discussion board, 4 responses, , one course reading and a seminar (which is on Mondays night so that's why). As it being early Saturday morning and having 4 days left to get everything completed I don't think I'm doing that horrible on my time management this week.

One key term that pops in my head is procrastination!! I am so guilty of that. For example, in one of my past courses I was finishing up a paper on Tuesday night I want to say around 4-5 pm and my laptop shuts off by itself (guessing it got too hot). I turned it back on and I think the majority of it was gone. Yup, I had to retype mostly everything.  There was tears as I liked what I had previously typed and was really nervous that due to having to type mostly everything again then I would get a low grade but I was really grateful that I got an A (I believe it was an a).

One of the things that I started way back in my associate year is to get a planner and write down all of my assignments that I had to do that week. As the days passed and I didn't do something I would write it on the next day. When I got things completed and submitted, I would highlight it so I knew I had that particular assignment done. A planner can help a lot with things other than school work if you're not in school.

Do you struggle with time management? Do you have any additional tips that work for you when it comes to time management? Let me know down below!

<3 Amanda

Friday, August 11, 2017

To Install Sarahah Or Not?


Hey guys,

You might have seen a new app popping up on social media and that is the Sarahah app. I have heard about it and it reminds me of apps in the past; Askfm and Formspring. I personally am not going to install it because in my opinion it is just another way that bullies can get away with bullying others. This app allows the sender to remain anonymous so the person who you're sending a message to can't see who you are. I know some of my friends installed it and that is totally their choice but again, I'm not going to.

<3 Amanda

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

YouTube Spotlight: The Lipkin Life

Hey guys,

I recently made a personal Instagram where I follow YouTubers that I watch, and my family and friends. I also have an Instagram account for my blog and I follow other bloggers.  I received a follower request on my personal account from an account called "The Lipkin Life". I clicked on their name and I noticed that they have a YouTube channel. I like finding new YouTube channels to watch so I checked out their channel. After viewing their first vlog where they introduced themselves and their 3 children, I instantly felt inspired by them.  They are a very strong family in my eyes, including the children.  Their family consists of the parents;Kyle and Dusti; and their children, Blake, Ethan and Olivia. In their family they are battling Arnold Chiari Malformation Type 1, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome Type 3, Craniocervical Instability, Narcolepsy, Thyroid Cancer, Hypermobility and also a few other things.

Something in me felt the need to get in contact with them and ask if they would be willing to do an interview that I could post on here. I definitely felt that they deserve more subscribers. Even though we don't even know one another I was touched and greatly inspired by them, and I know my readers would be as well.  I was honored when they sent me a message back saying yes, I could interview them and to email them my questions. Here are Kyle's responses to my questions:

Q: How do your family stay so positive?
A: It is a real challenge and mental game but to be 100% honest, we are not always positive (anyone who says they are is lying), in fact, we struggle daily with really trying to keep ourselves moving forward. YouTube up to this point has only really seen the "Highlights" and some drama from our family. We still don't record and publicize the intimate moments where we are completely broken down and sobbing over our children. There are nights where we can't sleep and just hope to God that our kids somehow can make it out of this. We battle constantly with doctors offices, family, and almost every aspect of life just to try and get people to believe we have anything wrong with us and our kids. Invisible illnesses are really terrible because on the outside you look great but on the inside, you feel like you are dying more every day. Every morning Dusti wakes up in such extreme pain that she cannot even function until she has medicine and coffee. To be honest, one of the ways to get through something like this is to take it head on and say "it is what it is" and you just fight.

Q:.Why did you decide on starting a YouTube channel?
A:  Our family used to belong to a very strict, legalistic church that allowed no video, movies, make-up or anything to do with "hollywood", which included YouTube. We recently left that church about 1.5 years ago. Dusti had always wanted to start a family vlog so it was her idea. We have only been on youtube for about 3-4 weeks. The main goal of our YouTube channel was and is 3 things.

  • Promote awareness for rare illnesses such as Arnold Chiari Malformation, Ehlers Danlos Syndrome Type 3, Narcolepsy, Craniocervical Instability and Thyroid Cancer. The first 2 illnesses listed here are the main focus
  • Provide a place where people with similar illnesses or struggles can come to see that although you may have to battle certain things, that you can always make it through. Life is full of up's and down's
  • Give a glimpse into the craziness that we struggle with as we battle against rare and chronic illnesses. We want our story to be heard.
Q: What do you like to do as a family?
A:As a family, we love just spending time together. In my opinion, some of the best times we have had together are at the dinner table (we always try to make it a point to eat together). We love to swim together and watch movies. Having certain illnesses does put boundaries on what you can "do", but we always just try to find things that we can do as a family.

Q:.What do you want your subscribers to take from your channel?
A: I personally want subscribers to feel a connection with us emotionally. I want them to feel like they can get something from our experiences. I want them to be aware of Chiari Malformation. I want them to have courage and strength to not just take what Dr's tell you as a final answer. I want subscribers to truly get something out of TheLipkinLife so that when they stop watching they feel inspired and that they can really make it through whatever it is they are facing.

Q:.Do you have any favorite YouTubers?
A:I have so many YouTubers that I like. Ones that I have really been following around Chiari/EDS are as follows:

  • Alyssa All Day
  • Christina Doherty
Q:What advice would you give to someone if they were going through the same medical diagnosis as your family?
A:I can only speak to the "healthy/support" person. I know that for myself there are times when it really can press down hard. What I am about to say only comes from experience and failures. As a father/husband, I would say that communication has to be the most important thing when trying to deal with a chronically ill spouse or child. Understanding your partner and the signs of when they just need a break are also helpful. Although I really do not do this myself, you really should have an outlet for frustration and make time for yourself. I use vlogging and video editing as an outlet right now. Having someone like a pastor or best friend to talk to always helps as well. Ask for help, reach out to family and support groups. Build knowledge in your partners/children's condition. Knowledge is power. Join support groups on facebook where you can connect with other people.

Q:What is your favorite quote?
A: I am a huge quote person. Here are my top 5 favorites

  1. “Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner.” Lao Tzu
  2. “If you don't like where you are, change it. You're not a tree.” Jim Rohn
  3. “When you judge others, you do not define them; you define yourself.”Earl Nightingale
  4. "People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”Maya Angelou
  5. “Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.” Suzy Kaseem
"First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. Then you win" - Mahatma Gandhi

If you want to check out their channel, click here. Their social media sites are:

Thank you Kyle for letting me interview your family and for inspiring me to be a better and stronger person each day!

<3 Amanda  

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Who Am I?

Hey guys,

In simple words, you can say that I am a young lady. But really, I am a young lady who has had her struggles in the past. In life, everyone has their struggles as life would be boring without them because they make us who we are.  Now my struggles might not sound too extreme to you, but they are unique to my life.  This winter, I will be turning 27 and I know that I’m still at a young age so I will have more struggles in the future.
When I was younger around the age of early elementary school, I was diagnosed with Selective Mutism, which in basic terms means that my lips were sealed at school and I would only talk at home or at school to people I was comfortable with. I was put in speech to help me try to be more talkative and open up more. My speech teacher was amazing. She even gave my parents her home phone number, so I could call her at home at nights. Even though it has been many years since that age, I can still remember that calling her at home and talking on the phone to her was much easier than talking in person. Thinking about that now, I’m not sure why that was, maybe because someone wasn’t looking right at me and making fun of how I was talking.  Beside my speech teacher, my general teachers were always so supportive and encouraging. The never forced me to do anything I wasn’t comfortable with. 
Throughout middle and high school, I was still a quiet person but I feel like I improved since elementary school. I still got that gut feeling in my stomach when I was called up to do a presentation, but I remembered getting up in front of the class and looking at whether teacher I had for that hour and just took a few deep breathes and thought to myself that even if I am a little quiet and maybe the whole class and the teacher can’t hear everything that I say, that I still got up in front of everyone and tried my best. There is one teacher that comes to my mind when I remember getting in front of the class. I had her for Social Studies in my sixth grade year. We had to do current events and present them to the class. If I recall correctly, I think I declined out of doing the first presentation but then I presented the next time we had a current event presentation.  I knew beforehand that I had to present because she had drawn sticks with our names on them, and had our names on the whiteboard. The day came when I had to present my current event. I got up in the front and just looked around and looked at her, and begun. Before I knew I was finished. When she passed out our current events back to us, I had a smiley face drawn on mine.  Just by looking at that showed me that she truly cared about me and was proud of me.

Going along the same lines of my Selective Mutism is bullying.  All throughout elementary, middle and high school I was bullied.  I’m pretty sure I was bullied because of how I looked and the way I talked.  Being bullied really sucked and was something that I struggled with.  I actually transferred school my senior year of high school due to being bullied. I didn’t tell the principal or anyone the real reason of why I wanted to be transferred to the other high school in my city.  You could say that I let the bullies win by transferring but to be honest I don’t care that they won in that sense because in my opinion, I won even more  I met a ton of new friends and the teachers were amazing (not saying that my teachers from my former high school wasn’t amazing as well).
I have had some personal family struggles as well that kind of affected my whole immediate family. The summer before my sophomore year of high school, my mom was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. That changed a lot to our family.  She wasn’t able to drive anymore due to her reflexes. She also walked slower, her penmanship wasn’t really legible anymore and she had to get glasses.  A few years back, she actually had Deep Brain Stimulation and had a pace maker put in her chest. Also, in 2015, she fell and broke 9 ribs resulting in her being in a rehabilitation center from early October to early December.   I know that it was only a few months but you still don’t know what could happen throughout that time.
When I was in my early twenties, my parents separated and got a divorce.  Even though I was in my early twenties, it still affected me a little.  No child at any age wants their parents to get a divorce.  But I knew that it was the right thing to do. My older brothers and I were actually surprised they stayed together as long as they did as we thought they would have been divorced years back.  Sometimes a marriage doesn’t work out and parents need to separate but their child(ren) should never blame themselves.
The final topic I wanted to chat about is friends. We all need friends in our lives. One thing that is important to remember is that friends change over time. Your childhood friends might not be your adult friends, and the same goes with your friends from high school or even college.  Everyone has their own path and journey and should be allowed to do something that they love and makes them happy.  There were many friends I had in the past and in recent years even that I’m no longer friends with and even though that makes me sad, I still hope the best for them.
If you’re ever walking around outside or in a mall, and perhaps you are a people watcher. Even though you are a people watcher, you don’t really know them deep down and personally. You might see them laughing and smiling with friends but they might be going through something serious.  A key thing to do each day is to make someone’s day different. You don’t even have to do much; a smile or a “Hi” goes a long way. 

<3 Amanda