Spring Cleaning

With the weather becoming warmer, more people are ready for spring and have begun wearing there spring clothes even though it is still 30 degrees outside.  Most people think of spring as a new beginning. It’s when the flowers bloom and the birds come back and the trees regrow their leaves. It is also when most people decide to clean.

Spring cleaning is very common, most people want to declutter their houses and their things when the weather gets nicer because they have a boost of energy from actually being able to go outside again.  I also enjoy spring cleaning, particularly the part where I go through all of my things and get rid of the things that I no longer need. But I always have issues with this. How do I know that I don’t things anymore?  What if a situation pops up where I need this stapler that I have not used in over 9 months? I have begun looking online for tips about how to go through your things to decide what to keep and what to give away.

The most popular thing to clean out is your closet.  You have to go through it anyways to put all of your sweaters and winter clothes in a bin and then to take back out your tank tops and shorts.  But it can be hard to decide what clothes to keep or not. I have a lot of clothes that I never seem to wear but I have to keep them just in case a special occasion arises where I need them.  The best strategy that I have seen when deciding what clothes to keep and what ones to give away is to turn all of your hangers in one direction, and when you where that item of clothing switch the direction of the hanger.  This way after a certain amount of time (the time frame I saw was 4 months) you can see if there are any clothes that you have not worn at all. If you haven’t worn a shirt in 4 months, that generally means that you do not need it anymore.  While this method takes a while and might not entirely count as spring cleaning, I think that it is the most effective way to clean out your closet.

When deciding what items to keep that are not clothes, it could get a little trickier.  I have several boxes of things that I never open but I can’t get myself to get rid of them.  The most helpful things that I have found to do are similar to what you do with clothes. As you are going through things you ask yourself when the last time you used it was, and if it has been a long time then get rid of it.  Some things that are small you might be able to get rid of and on that weird occasion that you need it you can ask a friend because chances are that they will have one laying around somewhere.

Spring cleaning, while it might not be the most fun, always makes you feel better once you’ve done it.  Your house and closet looks less cluttered, and you feel less cluttered and more refreshed.

Live Action Disney Movies

There has been a new trend over the past couple of years in the Disney movies that have been released.  Live action Disney movies started with the live action Cinderella and are still continuing now. There are three that are being advertised right now: Dumbo, Aladdin, and The Lion King.

The trend started with Cinderella.  The movie was almost an exact replica of the animated version.  They had tweaked a couple of things and made the movie as beautiful as possible.  This movie was beautiful to watch, and gave you the same magic as the animated version.  Beauty and the Beast was similar to Cinderella in the fact that it was very similar to the animated version.  Both movies included the most popular songs and followed the plot very closely.

For some of the movies Disney has changed the formula a little bit.  The live action version of the Jungle Book was very different from the animated version.  In the live action they only include the most popular songs and they add more to the movie to make it more cohesive and have more substance.  The live action Jungle Book improved upon the original animated version of the movie. The movie Maleficent also didn’t just recreate a past movie.  But this is because there was no Maleficent movie before this one. This entire live action movie was based off of Maleficent’s part in Sleeping Beauty.

The new Disney live action movies are coming out throughout the rest of this year.  Based on the trailers for the movies, we cannot tell if they movies will follow the plot lines to a T like they had for Cinderella and Beauty and the Beast.  I think that The Lion King and Aladdin will follow the original’s plot very closely but Dumbo might stray from it a little more. Dumbo might not follow the movie exactly because the original is not as popular with children now.  The animated version of Dumbo was also a little darker than most Disney movies are now, so I think that it might have a more happy and positive tone than the original.

The Calling of the Bees

It has become common knowledge that bees are dying.  I have seen many stickers, read many articles, and heard many people discussing this topic.  If bees go extinct then the way that we live our lives will drastically change. This is a problem that most people do not know what to do about to fix it.  Most people are also scared of bees, and run away when they see one, or they are generally not too happy about interacting with them.

I have spent some time on a Bee farm in Ecuador.  The farm was called Bee Farm Ecuador, and there was one family that kept all of the bees.  The head beekeeper, Gabby, was telling me about what the bees want. She says that a couple of years ago she realized that she could talk to the bees, or at least that she could understand them.  I know that this sounds crazy, but she says that there is a beekeeping community around beekeepers who are able to talk with bees. She says that the best way to save the bees is to invite them into our lives.  Every morning she does yoga with the bees, and she will put healing crystals around the beehives that she has made for them.

Gabby believes in somethings called “the calling of the bees”, this means that bees come to you if they think that you need them for some reason.  She says that the bees come and bring their strong feminine energy and the presence of them will help your life in some way. While I do agree that at first this sounded ridiculous, being around her and the bees I quickly realized that I was not scared of the bees while thinking with the mentality of “the calling of the bees”.  It didn’t matter if I believed that the bees were there to help my life or not, by me telling myself that they were I was not afraid of them when they flew by me and I heard there buzzing all around.

I think that the best way for people to start to help and solving this disappearance of the bees is to first stop being afraid of them.  And having “the calling of the bees” mentality is an easy way to do this.

2019 Oscars

The beginning of the year is known in Hollywood as the award season.  Where is seems like every week there is a new award show on TV. The most popular being the Emmys, Tony’s, Grammy’s, and the Oscars.  Each of these four popular award shows are based on a different category of entertainment: Television, Broadway, Music, and Movies. There is more than one award show for each category, these are just the most popular and seen as the most prestigious.

The Oscars seems to be the biggest award show out of the four, with movie stars coming from all over just to be at movies biggest night.  The Oscars gives awards for a large variety of categories from movie scores, to costumes, to the more common categories like best actress and actor.  Most people only seem to know about the “bigger” categories because those are the only ones broadcasted on television. Most of the other awards are done beforehand and are not shown.

The Oscars also has awards for different types of films.  There is the biggest award of the night, “Best Feature”, and there are also best animated film, best short, and best documentary just to name some examples.  

Generally the public has not seen the majority of the films nominated for Oscars, but it seems that this has changed a little in recent years.  For example “Black Panther” and “A Star is Born” are both nominated for best picture. “Black Panther” was one of the most successful movies of 2018.  Most people still have not seen the best documentaries or the best shorts nominations. However, the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor is playing all of the Oscar nominated best shorts and best documentaries.  This can give people a chance to go and see them before the Oscars, and it gives the opportunity to see something that most people would not have the chance to see otherwise.

Hamilton in Michigan

The hit Broadway musical “Hamilton” is finally coming to Michigan after being on Broadway since 2016.  The show will be playing in three different theaters across the state throughout the 2019-2020 season.

The Broadway show “Hamilton” seemed to become a new classic from the moment it started in April 2016.  The writer, star, and producer Lin Manuel Miranda shot to stardom because of this show. He played Hamilton during its first run on Broadway and will occasionally come back and play him again for special performances.  An example of this is during Hamilton’s Puerto Rican show to raise money for people in Puerto Rico who are still affected by the hurricane.

The show seemed to be so popular that was even hard for celebrities to get tickets.  There seemed to be constant stream of pictures of different celebrities watching Hamilton each night.  It may not be surprising then to find out that tickets were about $500 a person to go see the show. Luckily the tickets for the three shows in Michigan are a little more manageable.

Hamilton’s first stop after Broadway was Chicago, where tickets were still expensive and hard to get your hands on.  I was lucky enough to go to a performance and see Hamilton in Chicago. They stayed in Chicago for several months before getting ready to tour elsewhere.  Hamilton’s show in Puerto Rico was the start of their tour that will be all over the United States for the 2019-2020 season.

One cast member on this touring company is University of Michigan alumni, Simon Longnight.  He graduated from the University of Michigan in 2018, and is playing Lafayette/Thomas Jefferson on the tour.

The Broadway hit musical “Hamilton” is coming to Detroit, Grand Rapids, and the Wharton Center within the next year.  Tickets for the Detroit showings have already gone on sale!

What to do on a snowday?

Once the University of Michigan cancelling classes for two days in a row, I thought to myself “Hooray!  I’m going to catch up on sleep for the next two days!” Then I tried to remember what I did on snow days during elementary and high school.  I would play outside for the day, or have friends over to play inside. So I decided that maybe instead of sleeping for the next two days I could do something else.  So here is a list of things that I might do during our snow-days.

Movie Marathons!  I am a huge fan of movies, my favorite genres are romcoms, sci-fi, and thrillers.  When creating a movie marathon you have the choice of watching a bunch or random movies, movies with the same theme, or a movie series.  Watching random movies is good so that you do not get too bored when watching a couple movies in one sitting. This way you can laugh, cry, and get scared in one day; which can be more exciting.  Watching movies from the same genre, or with the same theme can give you an extra dose of whatever feeling you want. Watching a movie series gives you purpose when you are sitting watching a movie, because you now have to finish the series.  I personally like watching movie series. You can always re-watch Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings.

Read!  As a college student, I never do any reading for pleasure during the school year because I am constantly reading for my classes.  Taking two days to start and possibly finish a book that has been sitting unread in my bookshelf would be great. Cold weather is also the perfect reading conditions because then you are incentivized to sit in a chair curled up with a blanket and a book and are able to read for hours.  It’s also nice when you are sitting by a window that brings in natural light and so that you can look outside but you do not have to go outside.

Game night!  The last activity is better if there is someone else with you.  A game night or afternoon is always fun and relaxing, depending on the game.  I used to play a lot of board games growing up with my family, and I have not played them much since going to college.  I love when an opportunity comes up and I can play them again. The best games to play during snow days are games that take a long time because you have all of the time in the world.  I personally like to play Risk when I have a couple of hours to spend on a game.