New Ideas For Halloween

Every Halloween there seems to be a myriad of Wednesday Addams, Wes Anderson characters and cats. This year, why not try something different

Instead of being Wednesday Addams try Lydia Deetz from Beetlejuice.

Her costume is fairly easy.  You just need a black dress (you can even find this at a thrift store), a floppy black hat and black shoes.  Add some dark makeup and you’re done!
credit to

Rather than being a Wes Anderson character like Suzy and Sam from Moonrise Kingdom, try being a camper from Wet Hot American Summer.  These costumes are fun and easy.  All you need are 80’s teenager basics, and these are easily found at American Apparel.  This is a great group costume too.
Credit to the New York Times

Then comes the infamous cat, the costume teenage girls tend to gravitate to every year.  Lets try to leave the cat in the past and go with some cute woodland creatures.  Foxes and deer are oh so cute and make awesome costumes.  You can wear a cute and comfy dress and put on some makeup and you’re ready!
credit to Brit and co

A Big, Calming Hug

It happens in an instant,

the moment they become distant.

Each memory merely a snapshot,

frozen in your mind.

Smile for the picture,

a big, calming hug goodbye,

no more little tears left to cry.

Now there are only real tears,

the ones that come from your biggest fears,

the ones that leave you empty,

a body heaving for air,

for love,

for a nice, calming hug.


There are no more reassuring words,

from the one that makes your whole world.

No more smiles as you bite into your freshly baked cookie,

no more cheers on the soccer field,

no more hugs when you’re sad,

no more hugs when you’re glad,

no more,

no more.

Is it nice to miss class when you want?

Is it nice to get “mental health days?”


It is NOT nice to have to miss class to see a therapist,

to talk about “feelings” and ways to help your crippling anxiety,

when missing class causes even more stress,

then being there.

It is NOT nice to stay in bed gasping for air,

tears everywhere,

in your hair,




It is NOT nice to lose a parent to cancer.

It is NOT nice to hear your condolences.

Don’t think of yourself as a hero for saying “sorry.”

Don’t fling around a word you don’t mean.

Don’t tell me you know how I’m feeling.


I don’t want a hug,

not from you.

I only want a big, calming hug.

If only I had the person here to give it to me.null

Breaking down the Dam

Photo Credit:

Writers block is such an odd sensation. It’s like knowing what you want to write but you don’t know how to formulate it coherently.

It is literally an all-encompassing feeling of frustration and confusion.
The most frustrating part about writer’s block is that there is nothing that will make it go away except time and it can last for what feels like an eternity.

Writers block can strike at anytime, but it feels as if it is most common when there is a deadline that is fast approaching.

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Breaking through the writers’ block and having the words just flow out is one of the most satisfying feelings.

It is like a dam that has been holding back a vast amount of water, and that dam finally breaking down and all the water pouring out. Once that dam has been broken down you feel almost unstoppable, like the water that just continues to flow.

Libbey Park Volunteer

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I went to the Libbey Park construction site in Ojai, CA, as a volunteer today.

From Ojai Valley School there were only five female volunteers, including myself.

Wearing dark green OVS T-shirts, the volunteers checked in and drank Gatorade, having no idea what to do.

Ally Su, one of the five girls, expected the volunteer work to be taking care of little kids.

However, what was waiting for her were a huge pile of mulch, shovels, and wheelbarrows.

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At first, we had fun.

Mr. Alvarez, our peacekeeper, came to us after parking the school van and took pictures of us shoveling, and we would make stupid poses and faces.

However, as the photographer left and we continued the work, it became more and more painful.

“I think we are going to get blisters on our hands,” Said Ally. Thirty minutes from then, I could see an already-popped blister on my palm.

After repeating filling and emptying the wheelbarrows for about an hour, we became all exhausted. Our faces had layers of dirt on them, and our hands had turned red.

We found ourselves the only ones working without gloves. We’ve been complaining about it the whole time, and I found out that we were actually the only ones who did not know that we could get them from the tool check-in center behind us.

We had pizza with lemonade for lunch, wanting to go back home. However, there came a truck with another pile of mulch. Sighing, we got back to work.

The teenage girls had become shoveling experts at some point. We shoveled so fast that we had to wait for other workers to make more space to pour the mulch.

“Stephanie [Shin] found her future job,” Said Ally Su.

After half an hour of eating and two hours of shoveling, we headed back home.

First, we drove to Ally’s house only to find it locked.

Then, we went to Starbucks and met another school van with Mrs. Cooper in it.

After we got our drinks, Mr. Alvarez dropped Ally off at her house, “shh-ing” when she tried to tell him the directions.

As soon as I got back on campus, I took a shower and found two things: dirty water coming off of my body and another blister on my thumb.

Part 1

It was not long after the nuclear wipe out took place, a monumental event known as The Great Purge. All that was left were just scraps of the human race, the vagabonds, the cowards, the rats from the very darkest corners of grime.

How ironic, only the people too afraid to live were the last one’s left on the earth. The meek shall inherit the earth – it was foretold eons ago, well it seems that prophecy had finally come to pass, and the world had gone to spiraling out of control for it.

In the days before Act III of Humanity came to pass, the people left to breathe in the ashes of their loved ones sank to their knees.

Religion had long since faded from the lips of those whose God was so seemingly absent; it had turned into a simple words used to describe The Great Purge. But even so, with lungs clouded with ash, the people looked to hazy orange skies, with blood-shot eyes and veins bulging painfully from beneath sickly and wan skin.

They looked up at the unmerciful smog and smoke-filled sky as oil slicked tears fell from shattered souls, the meek prayed for the absent, so-called, messiah.

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The last of humankind had gathered in small groups of tired and hopeless people, scattered throughout the world; but, the only ones that matter were gathered in the center of what had once been called the city of the future.

It was on that day, one day till night officially fell, that a scruffy teenager barely sixteen dragged himself through the streets of the burnt city.

He had the eyes of days past; clear and pale green; offsetting, in a face caked with death and heartache; hopeful and optimistic, set into the face of someone forced to grow up to quickly.

He had the tooth of a long starved animal buried in his abdomen and he was quickly running out of blood to spare.

The surviving meek where huddled at the very tip of the city near the, now poison, ocean; as the boy stumbled down the road toward them, his eyes met with the eyes of a girl standing at the front of all the survivors.

The girl stared at the boy who was slowly making his way toward her. She was short with even shorter hair, it was cut into a choppy bob that fell midway down her neck. She was distinctly Asian in heritage, Singapore, this city had once been Singapore.

She was pale, powdery, with dark jet black hair and they eyes of a bird of prey. Her eyes though, that is what truly set her apart from the rest of the meek.

They were tawny and gold like a lion, rimmed in a thick layer of dark lashes. Although warm in color, her eyes had the cold, impersonal, precision of a microscope, they were like ice and fire in one person.

She did not strike one, outright as meek, but what had grouped her in with the cowards and vagrants was not that she was cowardly, but she had never tried to live.

Time Limit

When you really stop and think about it there is a time limit on everything. Homework assignments, projects, childhood, innocence, love, and even life. Most people don’t stop and think about having a limit on things that seem so long-term until they are forced to.

My godfather Leon was diagnosed with squamous cell cancer back in 2010. When I first heard he was sick I was shocked and over come with a million different emotions. I never thought that someone so kind-hearted and eternally generous would be punished with such a terrible curse.

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I was in a state of denial when my parents told me he was sick. The first time I saw him after he had started treatment was heart breaking. He was so thin, so tired and so weak.

Eventually the cancer spread and he had to get surgery. The surgery that he had been on his thyroid.

All of the memories I had with him, Leon always had a beard. The first time I ever saw him without one was after his surgery. In place of his beard was a scar reaching from the left side of his throat to the right side. While that surgery scarred Leon on the outside, it seemed as if his personality and courage  weren’t scarred at all.

After undergoing numerous rounds of radiation and chemo and going to doctors appointments after doctors appointments we had to accept that there is no cure.

Most people would just give up after this, saying that they have nothing else to live for, but not Leon. Throughout this terrible experience he has been the so optimistic. I have never heard him complain about his time limit.

If I could sum my godfather, Leon Azis, up into one word it would be: inspiration. To see someone who is so close to your heart go through that and not give up hope and to be so strong is unbelievably inspiring and amazing.

All I can do now is cherish the time that I have left with him and not focus on the limited amount of time, and just appreciate the time I’ve been lucky enough to have with him.