Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Meet Laurie Hernandez

Laurie Hernandez will be traveling to Rio to represent the Red, White and Blue on the USA Women's Gymnastic team. She has become America's Sweetheart. Here are 10 facts about Laurie...

  1. She was born in 2000. Yup she is only 16 years old which makes her one of the youngest Olympian athletes on Team USA. 
  2. She started gymnastics at the age of 5! 
  3. Her real name is Lauren Hernandez.
  4. She is from New Jersey. 
  5. In 2014 she had to have knee surgery. 
  6. Her pre-performance ritual is to place her hand on her belly and feel herself breathe. 
  7. She is Puerto Rican and is the first US-born Latina to make the women's Olympic team since 1994. 
  8. She has been homeschooled since 3rd grade and has aspirations to attend University of Florida
  9. Her nickname is "Human Emoji" because she is so expressive. She is known for her "sass"
  10. When her gymnastic career is over she wants to be an actress. 

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

How Pokemon Go Salvaged Our No Good Very Bad Day

First Blink-182 releases a new album (and a very good one in my opinion!) and now Pokemon is super relevant again. It's like 1991 all over again.

Have you noticed a lot more people wandering your neighborhood with a phone in their hands? Chances are they are playing the new phone app game "Pokemon Go". Just like in the 90's you can now "catch 'em all" but this time with GPS. The game is simple, you wander around looking for Pokemon and for places to earn Pokemon balls to catch them. Most places are churches or community centers and landmarks. Pokemon appear randomly as you travel around.

Now I wasn't a big Pokemon kid. Frankly I was a bit too old for the first go around, but my kids know about it from the card games. Sunday was a rough day for the family. It started with a tantrum by the youngest, then the oldest got sick and we had to cut our weekend vacation short and head home. We were all grumpy and spent the day in separate rooms. By the end of the day I knew we needed something to salvage the day. I had been seeing all these Pokemon Go apps posts on social media, so I downloaded the app and gathered the troops and we got into the car and the hunt was on. Since it was night we opted to drive around, and while Poppa drove the girls and I gave directions and gathered about 7 Pokemon. We had fun and ended what was a rough day on a good note.

So are you playing?

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Black Lives Matter, Period!

The debate is thick. One side thinks all lives matter. But do they really? Whites and Blacks are treated completely different in this country. That's my belief and it isn't anything new, I know. Plus, it's a belief I don't see our country proving wrong any time soon.

It's not about "ALL lives matter" at this point. It's about advocating for Black lives and doing all we can to stand up for their human and god-given right to equality. We've all been impacted by this epidemic, while Black Americans bare the brunt in bloodshed with tragedy after tragedy. Black lives are being ripped from this country as if this was some kind of civil war.

Black citizens lose their freedom, or worse, their lives over minutiae... a speeding ticket, a candy bar, a suspicion. It's utterly outrageous and equally outlandish. Not one person can say this is the case for White America. As a Latina born and raised in Inglewood CA., I can identify with the struggle, but I also CAN'T. 

I can't even begin to image the terror of having my brothers and sisters senselessly murdered at the hands' of police officers sworn to protect. I can't imagine raising a Black teenager and literally fearing for his or her life at the hands' of law enforcement. I can't imagine being subjected to chronic racism by a broken system that has resulted in over 500 innocent lives lost this year alone.

To me, the only time ALL LIVES MATTER is when we are one voice speaking out against the hate crimes inflicted upon our Black brothers and sisters. All lives need to protest, boycott, and demand justice next to our African American citizens, for them, and only them. This is about their lives and their humanity for all of humanity's sake. 

It is not enough to be shocked by the viral videos, speak around the watercooler because of the latest TV actor who stirs us with a passion for change, or secretly share our distaste for the hatred and DO NOTHING ELSE. 

Latinos, Asians, Blacks, Whites... on and on must unite to fight for the Black Lives Matter movement. Enough with being bystanders in the struggle. Speak up and speak loudly to demand the change required in this country. This is a deeply broken and systemic issue that only ends if all citizens stand together to declare ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

Act  Now. Act Today.

Ways to join and strengthen the BLACK LIVES MATTER movement!