Social standards are leaving high school students staggered


High school social standards are often a daunting part of adolescent life. Students are tasked with navigating a complex and ever-evolving social scene, and their status among their peers can have a significant impact on their overall happiness and well-being. While social norms in high schools have certainly changed over the years, there are still certain expectations and behaviors that persist.

One of the most prevalent social standards in high school is the expectation of popularity. While the concept of the “popular crowd” has been around for decades, social media has added a new layer of complexity to this issue. According to a Pew Research Center study, 71% of teens use social media, and many use it as a way to create their online image and gain social validation. This can lead to a high level of pressure to fit into a certain mold and maintain a certain level of popularity.

This picture helps to show what some students at Redlands East Valley High School think in their heads when it comes to the topic of social standards and the judgment behind it. (KENDRA BURDICK/ETHIC PHOTO)

“Fashion affects my school life because people judge you based on what you’re wearing and not on your personality or morals. Being judged affects me and others emotionally and mentally because all we’re trying to do is express ourselves and we are turned into something that’s through another person’s perspective and not our own,” states Brooklyn Andrews, a freshman attending Yucaipa High School. (KENDRA BURDICK/ETHIC PHOTO)

Another aspect of high school social standards is the pressure to conform to specific fashion trends whether it be what’s shown on social media or around campuses. According to a survey conducted by the National Retail Federation, clothing and accessories are the top spending category for back-to-school shopping, with an average of $239 spent per family. For many students, following the latest fashion trends is seen as a way to fit in and gain social acceptance. This pressure can be especially challenging for students who come from low-income families or who have different tastes and interests.

In addition to these external pressures, certain behaviors and expectations are reinforced within high school social circles. For example, drinking and partying are often seen as a rite of passage and a way to gain social status, even though they can have serious consequences. Similarly, bullying and exclusion are sometimes used as a way for individuals or groups to assert their dominance over others.

So, why do these high school social standards persist? According to psychologist Dr. David G. Myers, social norms are “powerful guides for behavior” that can help individuals make sense of complex situations and feel a sense of belonging. In other words, following the crowd can be an easy way to find one’s place in a social group.

However, it’s important to recognize that these norms can also be harmful and limiting. Students who feel that they don’t fit into the popular crowd or who don’t conform to specific clothing trends may feel isolated or excluded, which can have a negative impact on their mental health. The pressure to drink, party, or engage in other risky behaviors can also lead to serious consequences, from physical harm to legal trouble.

Kai Jiang, a junior attending Redlands High School, explains their personal experiences with social standards. “When I became a freshman, we were coming back from distance learning, and everyone was so separated and divided into groups with only people you knew. I thought this would change as physically going to school became regular but everyone is still divided into groups and they don’t like to mingle (associate) with other people.” 

Jiang continues to express how it affected their mental health. “Humans have to socialize to survive and stay sane, but it’s difficult to do when you are pressured into joining a club to be known and to have people hang out with you. It made me very uncomfortable having to act a different way to be let into a club and a class. This made me realize that stereotypical high school cliques are stereotypical for a reason.”

So, what can be done to address these high school social standards? One solution is to promote a culture of individuality and inclusivity. Friends, other students, and the people surrounding them can encourage students to embrace their unique interests and talents, rather than trying to fit into a specific mold. Teachers and counselors can also work to create a safe and welcoming environment for all students, no matter the student’s background or social status. In addition, guardians and other adults can help by modeling and reinforcing positive behaviors, such as healthy decision-making, empathy, and respect for others.

High school social standards are complex and ever-evolving. While some norms are deeply ingrained in our culture, it’s important to recognize their harmful potential and explore ways to create a more inclusive and supportive environment for all students. Promoting individuality, empathy, and respect, can possibly help teenagers navigate this challenging time in their lives and emerge as confident and fulfilled young adults.

How did HudaBeauty become a famous brand?


The brand includes different foundations, highlighters, eyelines, lipsticks and more. (Nadia Ceniceros/ Ethic News Photo)

HudaBeauty is a cosmetics brand created by Huda Kattan. Kattan is a 39-year-old makeup artist, beauty influencer, and entrepreneur. The brand was created in 2013 by Kattan and her two sisters Mona and Alya Kattan when she simply could not find false eyelashes to purchase. Now, HudaBeauty is a favorite and popular brand that many people love.

Before she was an influencer, Kattan had worked at a finance office but quit to pursue her dream job. In April 2010, she started a blog called “Huda Beauty” with her videos about makeup tips and tutorials. However, after three years, Kattan’s sister, Alya, gave her 6,000 dollars to start the company after considering it for some time. She also used her 10,000 dollars of savings to start her now well-known brand.

The first product to launch was false eyelashes. Her false eyelashes became very popular after the Kardashian sisters had talked publicly on social media about how great the lashes were. When she later released eyeshadow pallets, the colors were bright to embrace her heritage and have makeup with a Middle Eastern impact. As Kattan’s products got more attention, her followers on social media became larger as she would constantly post about new or feature releases.

HudaBeauty’s “Glowish” highlighter. It retails for $38 at any Sephora store. (Nadia Ceniceros/ Ethic News Photo)

In 2022, HudaBeauty sold more than 140 beauty products that range from lipsticks, eyeshadow pallets, compact powder, highlighters, false lashes, and more. HudaBeauty is mostly popular for its eyeshadow palettes for varieties of colors in pigmentation and matte lipsticks. Kattan also sells 39 different shades of foundation, after releasing nine more shades in 2020. HudaBeauty is only exclusively sold at Sephora stores.

HudaBeauty is connected to a skincare line called “Wishful” which was also made by Kattan. The line is also sold only at Sephora stores. The line was released on Feb. 16, 2020, with its first product being an exfoliating scrub. There are so far 34 products available in different sizes. HudaBeauty sells a fragrance brand called “Kayali” founded by Huda’s sister, Mona Kattan. There are 11 different types of perfumes, the first edition was released in 2018 and is now sold on the HudaBeauty website.  

HudaBeauty makes over two hundred million in annual sales today. Kattan’s net worth is about five hundred and sixty million, while the brand is four hundred million. HudaBeauty is manufactured in Dubai, where her parents were from. Kattan is the second richest beauty influencer, right behind Sofiya Nygaard. HudaBeauty is declared one of the fastest growing beauty brands.

Ariana Grande releases new chapter For her beauty line r.e.m Beauty


American pop singer and actress, Ariana Grande, is now a beauty brand owner. Besides creating music and acting, Grande released her own makeup and skincare brand, “r.e.m beauty”. These beauty launches are released in chapters, most recently, chapter four has been launched. Grande’s makeup line is being sold exclusively at Ulta Beauty stores nationwide. 

 r.e.m. beauty at a local Ulta Beauty store. All products retail over $15. (NADIA CENICEROS/Ethic News Photo)

Chapter one is named “Ultraviolet” and was released on Nov. 12, 2021. In this chapter,  lip glosses, mascara, fake eyelashes, eye pencils, eyeshadow palettes, highlighters, and lipsticks are featured. On Aug. 12, 2022, an expansion pack for chapter one was released, including eyebrow gel, eyebrow pencils, and multi-use eye sticks.

Chapter two is named “Goodnight & Go” mainly focusing on skincare in contrast to chapter one, which mainly focuses on makeup. Chapter two was released on Mar. 21, 2022, and features the products “Cooling Blurring Under Eye Balm”, “Common Face Mist”, and “Lash and Brow Boosting Serum”. Cream blushes, eyeshadows, and eyeliner are also a part of the collection. 

Chapter three, “On Your Collar” was released on June 16, 2022 and mainly focuses on lip products. In this chapter, a liquid lipstick, lip pencil, mascara, lip stain marker, lip oil, and eyeshadow are featured.

Chapter four was the latest release on July 28, 2022. Named “Out Of Body”, the main focus of this chapter is concealer. Grande has released sixty concealer shades, including a black and white concealer to mix with other shades and create a better fitting tone. Grande’s “r.e.m. beauty” has the highest number of concealer shades featured in a beauty brand, beating Rihanna’s “Fenty Beauty” with fifty shades of concealer.

The theme of the brand is celestial, with the majority of products having a space themed name. All products in the brand are vegan, cruelty free, paraben free, and recyclable. Many of these products also have multi-use, making the brand even more eco-friendly.

Many fans were surprised about the launch of the makeup brand. Grande had not released any music since her “Positions” album in late October of 2020, which started to worry fans about her continuing to make music. Because of the absence of new music, a beauty brand seemed far from possible. Grande’s line has been trending on all social media platforms since launching last year and has since become very popular.

Baby food trend emerges at Redlands East Valley High School


There has been an emerging trend of students bringing various types of baby foods to snack on throughout the day at Redlands East Valley High School. Although this may seem like a strange choice of food to bring to school, there are some components that compel students to eat it other than just taste. 

People of all ages have been eating baby food as a snack and with the goal of getting the nutrition that they need from a smaller portion. (KENDRA BURDICK/Ethic News photo)

Most high school students are eating baby food for the perceived benefit of losing weight, due to its nutrients and small portions. 

According to the health site Verywell Fit, Shereen Lehman, a healthcare journalist and fact checker, said, “Some proponents of the baby food diet claim that baby foods are healthier because they don’t usually contain any food additives.” 

The health site Healthline Writer Aimee Eyvazzadeh further explains how the diet is used for the reason that “the small portion sizes of baby food will reduce your daily calorie intake. There are several less restrictive versions of the diet, like replacing only one meal a day with baby food.”

With restrictive diets like the baby food diet, it’s also important to keep in mind the risk of developing disordered eating, which could lead to an eating disorder if the diet is followed for a longer period of time, according to Healthline.

“All the baby food that you can buy in the US meets strict US FDA regulations for safety,” said the health site Baptist Health.

Regardless of whether they bring baby food for dietary purposes or purely based on the taste,  some students enjoy this unusual snack to munch on throughout the school day.

Pleasing by Harry Styles: Spring collection released


An illustration of the new pleasing nail polish Shroom Bloom set (ELIZABETH MOLLOY)

Singer and actor Harry Styles released the beauty brand Pleasing with only the first collection of the brand in November 2021. The second micro-collection from the brand was released with a springtime theme in March. The collection has been named “Shroom Bloom,” a play on words with a nod to plants that start to bloom during the springtime.

With the release of this collection, Styles has chosen Mick Fleetwood to become the face of Pleasing and the collection itself. Fleetwood is the drummer of the band ‘Fleetwood Mac.’ Styles also has close ties to the band through the lead singer of the band, Stevie Nicks. 

With a new collection comes new products and colors. This time around, Styles has featured four new nail polish colors: Sprouting, The Whole Dewniverse, Tender Bud, and Vine Ripe. 

The brand also features two new skincare items. This includes a serum, “Acid Drops” as well as a Hand Plus Nail Balm. According to Pleasing, “This essential hand and nail cream melts into skin…protecting hands against drying elements and enriching nail beds.” In regards to the serum, it includes three different acids that are beneficial to the skin: malic acid, hibiscus acid, and salicylic acid. These acids combined with other ingredients provide glowy and replenished  looking skin. 

The apparel added to the collection features illustrations from artist Marisol Muro. Muro was consulted to create illustrations that are now displayed nearly everywhere when it comes to promotion from the brand. The newest line of Pleasing apparel displays Muro’s illustrations on the front. 

From March 15 to March 20, there were Pleasing pop-up shops in Los Angeles, New York, and London. Currently, all products are only being sold online and have not found their way to a store. These pop-up shops provided an opportunity to buy these items in a store as well as enjoy the art and whimsicality of what Shroom Bloom is all about. 

This collection showcases bright colors, a whimsical tone, and as Styles puts it, “a supernatural feel. This collection is a more authentic reflection of the singer himself as well as the intended idea of the brand; it’s intended to be something fun with no boundaries and that everyone can enjoy. This is very clear through the difference between the serious tone of the first collection and the fun lighthearted tone of the second. 

These products, including apparel, can be found on Pleasing, the Styles website where both the first and second Pleasing collections can be found. 

Citrus Valley hosts 2022 prom fashion show


Lights, Camera, Wonderland. 

On March 18 2022, Citrus Valley High School’s Associative Student Body put on their annual prom fashion show; however this year there was a twist. At the show, all information including the prom theme, date, ticket prices, and location were released.  

Citrus Valley’s prom theme was released by ASB senior secretary,  Miyah Lopez and social member, Bella Moreno, opening a banner that displayed “Ace: a Night of Wonder.” 

The theme is based off of the fictional story of Alice in Wonderland, specifically the characters the King and Queen of Hearts. 

Prom is scheduled to take place at Desert Willow Golf Course from 7-11 p.m. 

The fashion show itself contained seven groups, three couples and, a new addition to the show this year, four groups of three. 

The show began at the beginning of lunch in front of the E-building with the masters of ceremonies Senior Pep commissioner  Elise Kollar and Junior President Sydney Hageali gathering students around the runway. From there the first couple, senior model Ariana Nelson and senior model Landon Campos, were announced. 

After each couple or group made their way down the runway, they split at the end of the risers and each hit three poses. They then came back together and performed a handshake. Each handshake was unique, from twirls to dips to even money flying into the crowd. 

Trio senior model Sierra Alexi, senior model Wendy Gonzalez, and senior model Luchiano Swidan utilized real money during their handshake as the three of them threw a combined total of $100 in fives into the crowd. 

Students where able to grab and keep the money that was thrown into the crowd (BELLA ESPINOZA/Ethic News)

Alexi stated that, “I remember when we first threw money, it was unexpected because the whole crowd was just standing there stunned but then the realization and excitement kicked in and they started running to get the money.” 

The stage itself was ornately decorated in the theme “Deck of Cards,” as all four styles of playing cards were used. The runway was lined with cards as well as a black carpet to match the color theme of black, white, red, and gold. Cards were scattered over the windows that provided the backdrop to the runway, as well as on the poles that hung over and next to the stage. 

Balloons played a key factor in the show as three were placed on each side of the runway as well as a massive balloon arch in the theme colors that flew above the stage. 

During the reveal of the theme, single bouquets of balloons were brought out to be given to the audience. Hand decorated crowns were also brought out with the balloons. On the crowns the theme name was front and center, and students were able to wear them for the remainder of the school day. 

Clothing for the show was provided both by the sponsor Men’s Wearhouse, as well as personal items each model had at home. Men’s Wearhouse provided the show with six suits. Each boy that was provided a suit was able to choose from any of the selections that the store provided them. 

This year was the first year ASB utilized fully volunteered models. (BELLA ESPINOZA/Ethic News)

Steve Guiterrez, a senior that walked in the first ever boy trio, “They [Mens Wearhouse employees] treated us kindly even though it was completely sponsored by them, they treated us with respect and they made sure we were fitted and knew how to get dresses without their help.” 

Model include: Ariana Nelson, Landon Campos, Brody Moss, Madisen Habchi, Jakob Ibarra Garcia, Maddie Hernandez, Ryan Hill, Andrew Castillo, Jacob Weber, Emily Reyes, Chloe Cousineau,  Eddie Barajas, Aaron Roque, Peter Rodriguez, Steve Gutierrez Flores, Abby Gonzalez, Sierra Alexi, Luchiano Swidan, Emily Walos, Paige King, Miyah Lopez, Bella Moreno (BELLA ESPINOZA/Ethic News)

Harry Styles releases new beauty brand: Pleasing


Many celebrities, such as Selena Gomez and Jennifer Lopez, have recently started releasing their own beauty brands. The most recent celebrity to release a beauty brand is singer and actor Harry Styles. Styles is currently on his second tour, “Love On Tour,” since becoming a solo artist. On Oct. 6, Styles was spotted wearing attire sporting the name ‘Pleasing’. This led many fans to believe something was in the works. It has been almost two years since Styles’ sophomore album ‘Fine Line’ was released, speculation of a new album was very prominent. Before the show on Nov. 13, signs with the name ‘Pleasing’ were on display at Gila River Arena. 

On the same night, two social media accounts were created for the brand. Fans noticed a website called was up and running. However, the website was not fully released, displaying an email or phone number sign-up. On Nov. 14, the website fully released and displayed all of the products being sold. 

The website offered four nail polishes, a skin and lip treatment and a skin serum. All items went on presale. On the morning of Nov. 29, they were available for regular sale. 

Two styles of crewnecks as apparel for the brand were released for sale on Dec. 2. The crewnecks retail for $95.  The nail polish is sold alone for $20, the nail polish sold as a set retails at $65. 

Perfect Pearl is a pearly white polish, Pearly Tops is an iridescent clear and matte polish, Inky Pearl is a black iridescent polish with a deep blue undertone and Granny’s Pink Pearls is a pearlized pink polish. The Pleasing Pen has a lip treatment on one side and an under-eye serum on the other side of the pen. The Pearlescent Illuminating Serum is a serum with small lab-safe mica pearls for an illuminated tint on the skin. 

The Perfect Polish set retails for $65 and includes all four nail polishes from the collection. (ELIZABETH MOLLOY/Ethic News Photo)

Styles modeled for Dazed Magazine as a promotion for the brand. In the Winter 2021 issue for the magazine, Styles talks about the brand and what he wished it would reflect. The slogan of the brand is “We’re pleasing, never perfect.” Styles says the brand is for his fans and for them to enjoy. Styles is known for his androgynous style and finding inspiration from David Bowie, Mick Jagger, and more icons. He wants his brand to reflect the same thing, no boundaries to what you can and can’t do.

Halloween proves to be a dangerous time of year for black and tuxedo cats


During the month of October, it can be dangerous for tuxedo and black cats across the world. These cats often suffer miserable treatment this time of year. People tend to associate black cats with bad luck from the witch rumors that had happened in the olden years, making them a common target for mistreatment. 

People often adopt black and tuxedo cats as halloween decorations, then quickly move on and get rid of them. Other times it could be worse mistreatments like abuse, and sacrificial rituals and death. 

Starting around the medieval times and continuing on to 2014, while other attempts for cat rituals haven’t been disclosed in more recent timing.This practice has been going on, in a way to “protect” people from evil spirits.  According to the staff from Oakland Veterinary Referral Services, “Many of the old Pagan religions also associated the black cat with witchcraft and evil. This carried through into Medieval times, where witches were said to take the form of a black cat at their will. During the witch trials, black cats were often burned at the stake alongside witches.” 

The common misconception is that both black and tuxedo cats tend to bring bad luck towards families who adopt them. These are the reasons why they are the least adopted cats, and why there’s a lot in shelters. The team from Priceonomics writes, “ Black and white cats, also known as “Tuxedo” cats, have an unusually low adoption rate at just below 70%.” In some shelters, workers are even being cautious on letting people adopt these cats during October to make sure the cats are not in any danger. Redlands animal shelter has a strict adoption process.  Often doing a check in by contacting the family to see the wellbeing of their new pet.

Eight month old black cat by the name of “Boo” sits in her cat bowl after trying to capture the red dot from her laser pointer. (MARSHALL SCOTT/Ethic News photo)

 People make sure to keep their black cats indoors during halloween to prevent harm towards them. People sometimes even tend to foster these cats during this time. After fostering them they’ll put them into a no-kill shelter to insure their safety even more. Even creating a small food and sleeping area for them could help the lives of these furry guys.

Thrifting promotes environmental friendliness and unique finds


A customer browses through the rack of men’s t-shirts at a Goodwill in Redlands on Oct. 9. (MIA ARANDA/ Ethic News Photo)

Thrifting has garnered more and more popularity throughout the years. Any store that sells donated clothing, furniture and other merchandise at discounted prices is considered a thrift store. Although often thought of as simple stores like Goodwill and Salvation Army, thrifting can also include rummaging through bins and booths at garage sales and swap meets.

Part of the attraction that draws many to thrift stores are its affordable prices and unique pieces. Oftentimes, clothing items at thrift stores only cost a few dollars allowing customers to purchase multiple items for an outstandingly low cost.

Redlands East Valley High School sophomore Alma Shelly King said, “[Thrifting] is a lot more affordable for people who can’t always buy from the more expensive clothing brands.”

King typically looks for sweaters, band t-shirts and jeans at local stores like Goodwill and Salvation Army. Their favorite thing about thrifting is finding old, vintage clothing.

Many also find excitement in discovering unexpected pieces, which can help diversify one’s closet, especially if they are yearning for more distinctive, occasionally unconventional, articles of clothing. In addition, the special experience of finding and purchasing a hidden treasure at a thrift store makes the item even more memorable.

Chef Yotam Ottolenghi’s concept of “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” accurately illustrates the fixation over thrifting.

Thrifting is also admired for being environmentally friendly.  Thrifting promotes the reusing of items. As a person gives an item a second life, they are helping decrease the size of landfills and the need for the production of additional items. It can also help preserve water due to less clothing production, reduce chemical pollution and lower one’s carbon footprint, or in other words, the greenhouse gas emissions produced from one’s actions.

According to Goodwill, their stores have contributed greatly in “diverting nearly five billion pounds of goods from landfills and into reuse.”

Thrifting can be a time-consuming pastime that may require a lot of patience, but the thrill of accumulating unique finds for low prices and promoting environmental friendliness makes it worthwhile.

Keeping an organized room while stuck indoors


As we all know, keeping a room clean and organized is a very difficult thing to do. A few days after cleaning, things like trash, dirty laundry, and random items, start to pile up on the floor. 

Freshmen Ava Larson said, “I have a really hard time keeping my room clean after cleaning it. Everytime I clean, [by] next week stuff is everywhere on the floor.” 

Not only is cleaning a messy room extremely repetitive with time, but it is not the most enjoyable or pleasant activity in the world. Even while listening to your favorite songs while picking up your room, it can get tiring after a few minutes. Sometimes all you want to do after a long day is relax in your room, but you can’t because it’s messy! Having a cluttered space often leads to stress and can cause a cluttered mindset.

Although it is hard to keep a room clean and organized for a long period of time, there are a few steps that will help make it easier: 

  1. Detail clean the room 

To do this you just need some cleaning spray, a towel and a trash bag. Start with picking up any trash on the floor or under the bed. After the trash is all picked up, wipe down all surfaces in the room, then go through all your drawers and throw out anything that you don’t need anymore. 

  1. Get rid of old things 

If you have any old notebooks or nick nacks you don’t use anymore, throw it away! If there are clothes that don’t fit anymore, or that you just don’t wear anymore, donate it! By doing this, it will eliminate clutter and give you more space in your room!

  1. Reorganize 

When you are done cleaning out everything, go through the items you have and separate them into different categories. Once you do this, it will be so much easier to find things you are looking for! 

  1. Make your bed everyday 

By making your bed in the morning, it automatically brightens the room and makes it feel much cleaner. William H. McCraven, a retired Navy SEAL, said that “if you make your bed in the morning, you will have accomplished the first task of the day. It will give you a small sense of pride, and it will encourage you to do another task, and another, and another. And by the end of the day, that one task completed will have turned into many tasks completed.” 

  1. If you see something out of place, put it where it belongs! 

If you walk into your room and see a piece of trash laying on the floor, quickly put it in the trash. If there are dirty clothes on the floor, pick them up and put them in the hamper. It is so much easier to take five seconds picking up a piece of trash off the floor right away, than to spend hours cleaning a messy room! Every item has a home and we just need to help it get there!

     6.   Make a list of chores 

If you are the type of person who likes to write lists, this trick is for you! All you need is a pen and paper and maybe even a notebook! To keep your room very tidy, make a list of daily, weekly and monthly chores. An example of a daily chore is to pick up things off the floor, a weekly chore might be to vacuum the room and a monthly chore could be to wipe down flat surfaces in your room! It is an easy, yet effective way to keep yourself accountable for keeping your room organized! 

Even though keeping a room clean can be extremely difficult and tedious, it is not impossible! Using these tips and tricks will definitely help. 

Featured Image: The desk of high school senior, Lilian Mohr, who is currently attending Redlands East Vally through distance learning. All classes, school work, and assignments are done here and Mohr states “I have really tried to keep my work space clean and organized as it helps me stay productive during school.”(Ethic Photo/ Lilian Mohr)

Zodiac signs continue to correlate with life today


Throughout the history of astrology there have been many people that look for answers, signs and predictions relating to the movements in celestial bodies. In the mid-first millennium, humans have been using the term “zodiac” in reference to a list of stars along the ecliptic. From farmers using the zodiacs as a calendar or navigators using the zodiacs as a map, to the job title “astrologist,” history is littered with many uses for the zodiacs.

A large number of people made zodiacs a source of a mystical direction for answers or adventures. Zodiacs can even be found in various belief systems in ancient cultures, costumes and even civilizations. Some religions and beliefs also include the zodiac philosophy. For instance, the chinese calendar has historically been associated with the ancient religion of using the zodiac signs as a way of determining the changing seasons.  

According to Time News, “It’s thought that all of these ideas came together when Alexander the Great conquered Egypt around 330 BC.” They contributed the idea that patterns of stars made up constellations through which the sun appeared to “move” at a specific time during the year.

The zodiacs are simply constellations that are matched to dates based on their placement between the sky in the sun. They are mostly known for their positions of the sun as they appeared over 2200 years ago. According to Time News, “Some horoscopes sites may promise predictions based on the ‘movement’ of the stars.” 

Many people believe that these zodiac signs can show predictions about a person’s day or month. Many newspapers have obtained the tradition to print the horoscopes or predictions of all zodiac signs to please some readers and for entertainment.

Zodiac signs have no actual proof that you have a correlation with our personalities and are not an exact science. However, throughout history they have helped us understand ideas of life and have proven to encourage self-confidence.

Senior at Redlands East Valley, Skylar Watson, shares a photo of her own necklace featuring her Zodiac sign. Watson says “I have always really been interested in horoscopes and I feel like I match with the traits that are often associated with my Zodiac sign really well.” (Photo credit to Skylar Watson)

Through all the zodiac signs, each individual sign represents an individual’s own unique traits and talents. Many people connect themselves to their zodiac sign characteristics. The different astrological stars, signs and planetary bodies all contribute to the influence of your personality.

Most people know their star signs or horoscopes and carry some traits associated with their signs. While most people in the United States are familiar with astrological signs, few are acquainted with other cultures’ zodiacs. 

Many Native Americans used nature as a main source of inspiration as they associate every aspect of life, including birth symbols. Some people connect birth symbols with their zodiac signs along with celestial bodies.

“We don’t really know who first came up with the idea for looking at things in nature and divining influences on humans,” says astronomer Sten Odenwald, the director of Citizen Science at the NASA Space Science Education Consortium.

Zodiac Signs have been, and still are, an extremely important part of history and culture. We depend on them for a sense of navigation, hope, hobbies and understanding these spectacular celestial bodies.

The Zodiac Signs:

Aries (March 21-April 19), Taurus (April 20-May 20), Gemini (May 21-June 20), Cancer (June 21-July 22), Leo (July 23-Aug. 22), Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22), Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22), Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21), Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21), Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19), Aquarius (Jan. 20 to Feb. 18) and Pisces (Feb. 19 to March 20)

Minimalism: Sometimes less is more

Originally published in La Plaza Press


Minimalism. We’ve all heard of it. Whether you’ve watched every single episode of Marie Kondo’s hit Netflix series, seen pictures of tiny, empty rooms floating around on the internet, or read a book or two from The Minimalists, minimalism is all about owning only what adds value and meaning to your life (as well as the lives of the people you care about) and removing the things that do not bring joy into your life. It’s about removing the clutter and using your time and energy for the things that remain. 

One of those Scandinavian minimalist homes you’ve probably stumbled upon on the internet. Artwork was made with Google Drawings. (ARIANA GHALAMBOR/La Plaza art) 

While many people focus on the decluttering and getting rid of several items, for many people, minimalism is all about the intention. It is not that having stuff is bad, it’s when the thing you own ends up owning you that’s the problem. The most important philosophy of minimalism is intentionality. In minimalism, everything the person owns is there intentionally because it brings meaning into their lives. A minimalist will usually choose to value quality of items over the quantity. This means that the amount you choose to possess will be unique to you and fit to your personal choice. Minimalists want to have exactly what they need and nothing more because it affords them a life that is perfectly aligned with their vision of an ideal life.

The goals of minimalism include but are not limited to:

  1. Focusing on what matters: quality time with loved ones
  2. Saving money; removing debt
  3. Have a flexible schedule with minimal commitments
  4. Pursuing what’s interesting and, where possible, and profitable
  5. Minimizing distractions and unpleasant elements in life
  6. Reclaiming more time and living in the moment
  7. Eliminating distractions and discontent
  8. Ridding yourself of excess items that don’t bring joy into your life

Contrary to what some people think, there aren’t any actual rules to minimalism. There are no official guidelines of minimalism to determine whether or not you’re doing minimalism right. Minimalism will always look different for everyone. It is meant to be used as a tool that fits each unique individual and changes depending on each person. For some minimalists, they may have 60 CD’s in their library. But they are still nonetheless minimalists because every single CD brings joy into their lives and is there intentionally. You don’t have to own below a certain number of items. You can still have nice things, and no, you don’t need to get rid of your favorite collection—whether it’s books, shoes, or music. Minimalism doesn’t have to look like white-walled, modern and empty homes you’ve probably stumbled upon in magazines and videos.

In the end, minimalism is less about owning fewer items and more about actively making choices on what kind of things truly matter to you. Again, it’s all about the intentions one sets to own mainly what sparks joy in your life and the intentions to rid yourself of junk that doesn’t.

The society and Western lifestyles that many Americans participate in encourage the constant pursuit of bigger and better is an endless cycle. There will always be a nicer car to buy, a bigger boat, a larger home, and or a faster private jet. This is a problem because it creates a society that values quantity over quality. You could have 20 different sneakers that are all uncomfortable and low quality, but there is simply no reason to because you could use that money to buy 3 pairs of high quality and comfortable shoes that will last you much longer. In minimalism, the goal is to fight against this societal pressure and value the quality of items you enjoy over the quantity of that item. This will mean that you will save money from only buying one, high quality item, over buying hundreds of low quality items that you have to continue rebuying because it won’t last.


It may seem like an overwhelming challenge at first, but as you untangle the life you built around owning more things, you’ll find the stress disappearing and the world starting to slow down. Those choices you make will begin to build a muscle that will fundamentally change the way you live your life.

Okay. So you like the idea of what you just read but you feel intimidated on how to begin your minimalist journey. Starting small is the best way to get started on something that feels like a big change. Try by first getting rid of one item you own that you feel is unnecessary in your life. It could be an old tee shirt, a nail polish you never used (and don’t plan on using), or a stuffed animal you haven’t thought about in years at the back of your closet. It can be anything, but make sure to try and donate or recycle items that someone else could benefit from as opposed to throwing them away in the trash. Some people also prefer to resell lightly used items by a yard sale, online app, or to a pawn shop if it is more valuable. 

One rule of thumb many minimalists like to use to guide them is: “If you haven’t touched the item for over 6 months and there is no true use for it, get rid of it”.

The next immediate step is to stop the influx of buying new things that you don’t actually need. Whether that means logging out from Amazon or not going to the mall anymore, take steps to prevent yourself from purchasing new things that will continue to clutter your home. It’s important to not find yourself in a loophole of waiting for big sales to buy unnecessary items like Black Friday that won’t get any use. Many people of Redlands have heard about minimalism and have various feelings about it. One of the students, Emily Miller of Redlands East Valley says, “Minimalism means to surround yourself with the least amount of things that will keep you happy and healthy. Not to indulge yourself with unneeded things.” She says that objects and materials have never really gotten in the way of her life but sometimes she spends money on items she doesn’t truly need. Although Miller speaks very highly of minimalism, she would never try it because she has too much attachment to her items to lead a minimalist lifestyle. She adds that, “I think the idea of getting rid of things that don’t get used often is a good idea. For instance, only keeping clothes that fit me and make me happy rather than holding on to them in case I might use them later” are some ways she would introduce aspects of minimalism into her life.

Good habits spark positive thinking


“Elevate your mood today with a positive attitude” (Isaac Mejia/ Ethic News).

Maintaining a positive attitude is crucial in life. This is especially true for students in times of distance learning, where never-ending technical difficulties continue to wear patience thin and attack mental psyche. During distance learning, it is very common to find feelings of frustration or thinking negatively throughout the day. It is possible that the thought of a pessimistic mindset is justifiable or that it helps cope with current struggles. Nonetheless, constantly thinking negatively can leave someone overwhelmed with defeat, frequently upset and cause unnecessary anxiety. 

According to a study conducted by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, more optimistic people had a “30 percent lower risk of dying from any disease.” So, how do humans combat negative thinking? The answer is simple: It starts with you. You have the power to change your way of thinking and transform the way you choose to live your life. 

Here are some habits that may help you start to develop a positive mindset:

1)  Coming to terms with negativity

We are all human beings. It is unrealistic to think that we can operate throughout our day without ever experiencing a negative thought or emotion. Because of this, you can allow yourself to temporarily feel negative. Sometimes, it’s okay to not be okay. It is not okay to trap your emotions inside yourself and never come to terms with what’s really bothering you. So when you start to recognize that you are having negative thoughts and feelings, you should talk about it, release them, and move on. 

After you release yourself from your thoughts, you can start thinking positivley without any negative thoughts in the back of your mind preventing you from doing so.

2) Appreciation and Perspective

Once you have a clear mindset, start to recall all of the good moments, cherishable memories, and simple instances of happiness that you have expeirenced throughout your day. No matter what, there is always something that you can be thankful for. Sometimes, when we are so consumed in our misfortunes, we allow our negative thoughts to overshadow all the positive aspects of our life. It is easy to forget the many luxuries we enjoy on a daily basis such as being allowed to pursue an education, having air conditioning in our car, or owning a mattress to sleep on. 

No matter what, our circumstances can always be worse. Therefore, it is important that we appreciate what we individually have and recognize that some of our problems are miniscule compared to others. Putting things into perspective can be very beneficial when you are attempting to think positively. 

This is not to say that your negative thoughts aren’t affecting you, but it is a tactic that will help you identify whether or not you are manifesting a greater negative perspective than necessary. By simply appreciating all of the wonderful things you do have and putting your situation into perspective, you can transform your way of thinking and elevate your mood.

3) Limit negative encounters

As we start to think more positively and develop happier lifestyles, we want to prohibit ourselves from interacting with things that will stimulate negative thoughts and set us back. We do not realize that some of our daily habits are a direct catalyst for our negative mentality. In today’s society, where social media reigns supreme over the lives of many high school students, we are unaware that hours of social media scrolling can generate negativity. 

Unintentionally, you may find yourself constantly comparing other individuals lives to your own which will cause insecurity and negative thinking. Maybe you are not a social media addict, another source of negativity can present itself through watching the news. The news, while informational, discusses many topics that you may find disconcerting or troubling. These feelings can lead to negative thoughts and even fear. You should be mindful about how you spend your time and ask yourself whether or not you are being lifted up or brought down by those things.

As many people probably can concur, starting to think positively is hard. It’s a commitment, a choice; a lifestyle. It will improve your quality of life as, according to John Hopkins Medicine, a positive attitude is directly connected to “lower rates of depression” and “less stress.” At first, you may find it difficult to change your way of thinking, but as long as you persevere, you will start to develop a positive mindset and wonder how you ever lived without one.

Dealing with Life’s Detours


Life is filled with so many detours. As much as we wish things could always run smoothly, that is simply not the case. When you are constantly thrown twists and turns it is extremely difficult to stay motivated. There are some steps you can try to help deal with unexpected detours.

Slow down

Sometimes it is easy to get frantic when you’re moving through life smoothly and quickly. Then an obstacle shows up in front of you, but you don’t want to stop. The best thing you can do in these scenarios is to slow down and remember that life isn’t a race. Though it can seem daunting, sometimes we might have to take a different path than the one we want. That doesn’t mean that path can’t take you to the same place. Physician Susan Biali Haas, a writer for Psychology Today, said, “I have been stunned by the experience of slowing down. It is like waking up, without having known you were asleep. What I’ve realized by slowing down, though, is how habitually I have been rushing.” Take some time to stop and ask yourself if you are unknowingly rushing through your life.

Believe in yourself

Nobody enjoys life detours because it takes us away from our comfort zone. Which makes us question ourselves and wonder whether or not we will be able to handle this detour. This fear of the unknown causes us to only focus on the bed and parts of ourselves that we think are weak. To get past these blocks in the road you have to leave this negative mindset behind. Tell yourself that you will be able to overcome this, because chances are you will.


There’s no reason to panic when you can’t find an immediate way around a detour. As much as we may not want to, some detours cannot be passed. You need to know when to find a path around the detour, and when to tough it out and accept it. Most of the time, you can’t control what happens to you. It’s up to you to decide how you handle life’s sudden changes. Choose to learn from this life event and gain some personal growth or learn new things. A sudden detour only has to be a waste of time if you make it one. Besides, even if you don’t see it now; this detour might be taking you to the place you need to go.

“Not all who wander are lost” -J.R.R Tolken 

Students in the Redlands community help others in need with this easy homemade mask tutorial


Amidst a global pandemic almost every aspect of daily life has been impacted in some way. Schools are digital, stores are closed, and friends have to stay six feet apart from each other. 

Meanwhile healthcare workers put their life on the line every day to help those in need, but the best way for everyone else to help is to just follow CDC guidelines of social distancing and staying inside. 

Jack Tetrault, a senior at Redlands East Valley, says “It feels really weird now that I went from being crazy busy and doing something all the time either with school, sports, or ASB, to now just sitting at home.  I catch myself feeling like I should be out doing something or like I am forgetting something but actually there is nothing really going on.”

For many, this new way of life has led to boredom or a sense of helplessness as a lot of events have been cancelled or postponed leaving people with pretty clear schedules for the next few months. 

There is an easy way though for almost anyone to get involved in helping the community while in quarantine, even from their living room couches. Making homemade masks can bring a neighbor, loved one, or healthcare worker the personal protective equipment that is essential during these scary times.

Skylar Watson, a senior at Redlands East Valley, says “My grandmother made masks for our family and I actually was inspired to learn how to make them too. It gave me something to do in quarantine and I felt like it was a great way to help in any way I could.”

Follow the steps below to make your own homemade masks:

Materials Needed:

Sewing machine and/or thread and sewing needle

Any fabric without large gaps or holes in the material

Flexible string

Paper and pencil

Sewing pins

Ruler or measuring tape

Step 1: Pick out a fabric and gather materials.

Step 2: Make a stencil to trace the size of mask desired, mark around the stencil, and cut out the mask. Repeat this step twice to get two identical cut-outs of the mask.

Step 3: Lay the pieces of mask on top of each other with the back sides facing out, meaning the side of the fabric that will show show in the end is what is turned inward. 

Step 4: Then sew the vertical short sides together on each side.

Step 5: Now take the two ends that have been sewed together and bend the fabric so they are now in the middle of the mask. Now what was the narrow parts of the material that were in the middle of the mask is now on the side.

Step 6: Sew the top and the bottom, long sides of the mask together but leave about a one inch gap at the end of the top. 

Step 7: Now begin to gently pull the inner fabric through the hole that was left until the mask has inverted itself and the front side of the fabric is showing. 

Step 8: Now sew the top and bottom, long sides of the mask again but this is now going to create a hem. 

Step 9: On both short sides of the mask, fold in about a half an inch of fabric or enough to were a pocket is made that a piece of string could be inserted through. Now use pins to secure this fold and sew along the end of the fold. 

Step 10: Now cut two, nine inch pieces of any type of flexible or stretchy string.

Step 11: Thread the pieces of string through the folds on each side and secure them with a knot.

Step 12: Now either use the masks when in public, give them to friends and family, or donate them to healthcare workers to help stop the spread of the Coronavirus. 

Keeping a healthy mindset during quarantine


(Markus Spiske/ Pexels)

Having to be isolated from the rest of the world can leave us with many conflicted feelings. Maybe you feel happy to stay home, or maybe you feel lonely. Either way, this quarantine has definitely left us feeling different than before. It is important to find ways to keep a healthy mindset during this tough time. 

There are plenty of good habits and activities that can help you keep busy during quarantine. Staying busy is one of the easiest ways to keep yourself sane. If you find yourself constantly pacing back and forth from one side of your room to the other, it may be time to find something new to do. Whether that means picking up a new hobby or going for a walk, it can help take your mind off how bored you are. Try to catch yourself when you find yourself hopelessly wandering around the house.

Staying busy during quarantine is best done through new hobbies. You may have heard this one before, but it really works. Some may feel discouraged when it comes to trying new things and will avoid them if they don’t think it will be a success. However, this mindset will keep you from engaging in activities that you might have enjoyed in the end. There’s no harm in trying. Now especially, you have the time to start something new. Who knows, you might just find your new favorite hobby.

Being isolated can lend to a state of confusing thoughts and stress. It is important to find a way to clear your head during this quarantine. A simple such method is spending some time outside. It may seem silly, but by simply getting some fresh air and enjoying nature, you’ll become more clear-headed and focused. If that doesn’t work for you, maybe doodling or another form of creative expression will help you de-stress. The main idea is really about making time in the day for yourself. You may even just need a good solid nap. Everyone needs a nap sometimes.

One of the problems that could be causing stress is the clash of schoolwork in a home environment. Before you would go to school and learn. Then you would come home and it would be time to relax. Now, it’s hard to know when to relax and when to work on school, leaving you even more stressed out. It will be helpful to try and separate the two as much as possible. Set times during the day for when you will work on school, and when you can relax. This will guarantee that you won’t end up spending all day stressing about school and not getting time for yourself. It can also help with organization and time management.

You may not realize it but keeping your mind healthy and happy will be one of the most important aspects of this quarantine. Even if you don’t agree yet, there’s no harm in trying.

Redlands students work to stay productive in their distance learning


As millions of high school students across the world enter into a new phase of education during the pandemic that is solely reliant on distant learning, obvious struggles begin to arise as organization flies out the window. Productivity seems more impossible than ever when students have now been given the option to do all their school work in their pajamas and in bed. 

Some students may thrive under a more loosely structured education. For example, those who personally decide to transition into homeschooling or online learning. However, any high schoolers that have been going to school five days a week and eight hours a day since they were five or six; struggle without the schedule and structure that attending school provides. 

Redlands Unified School district has been out of school since March 13 and began distance learning on April 13. This means that by this point, all students within the district  have had at least one week of attempting to find a way to learn from their homes. While some have had even longer, as many Advanced Placement courses began reviewing for their modified exams once spring break concluded. 

Now that the “trial period” of distance learning has been completed, many teachers and students have settled into a schedule and figured out what is going to work for them.

Skylar Watson, a junior at Redlands East Valley, is currently enrolled in three AP classes.

 She is taking a third year of a forgeign language, an honors math class, and an art elective.  Watson said that “forcing myself to wake up at a normal time in the morning, setting aside designated time for each class everyday and making sure I get outside at least once a day to give myself breaks in between my school work has kept me surprisingly productive during quarantine.” 

 Nonetheless, some students do not have their school work as organized as Watson. There is a great transition from simply a few hours of work a day to around five hours a day. 

It is extremely important to create an organizational system that works to log the classes a student will have throughout the week. For example students can make a poster, fill out an agenda,  a computer calendar system, and even a Post It schedule to log the classes they will need to attend throughout the week. Writing out all of the virtual classes and their scheduled times will take away some of the stress and risk that would come if all of that information was expected to be memorized. 

As far as completing the work that is assigned during these virtual lessons goes, dedicating specific time blocks throughout the day will help all of the work feel less daunting. If one hour work blocks are scheduled throughout the day and are complete with breaks for meals, outdoor exercise, or hobbies, the workload can get accomplished without too much stress. 

Other tips for finding success in the new world of distance learning include setting up the notifications of important applications such as the school email, google classroom, and Aeries. This way it is less likely that any important announcements or assignments will be missed. 

Students should also participate in the teachers’ dedicated office hours in the classes where they normally struggle to make sure they don’t get behind or confused on the work that is assigned. 

Staying productive during quarantine is not limited to only staying organized academically. It also involves keeping important aspects of students’ life healthy such as fitness, mental health, and relationships with friends and family. 

Making sure that students are able to find ways to still participate in the activities they loved before the pandemic is essential in making sure that their time is as enjoyable and tolerable as possible. 

Though this difficult situation has presented students with countless new challenges, high schoolers have proven to be resilient. They have still been able to be productive, organized, and make the best out of their situation. Through the use of organizational systems, notification set ups, and digital social interaction methods, students today have been able to continue getting their education in a new way. It is true that this situation is much different than any that these students have ever encountered in the past but the ways that they have overcome the current adversity should give everyone hope for the future.

How to express creativity virtually


(Bongkarn Thanyakij / Pexels)

School isn’t just a place for learning and academics. For some students, it is where they are allowed to express themselves, to laugh with friends or show off creative style. Even if we are unable to do it anywhere else, we know that we can express ourselves at school. 

However in quarantine, it seems almost impossible for us to express ourselves or communicate with friends like we did previously. The time is now to use all the technology that’s available to us. With all our options, we forget how useful technology can be when trying to keep in touch or express oneself.

It starts to become tiresome when the only one you can show your outfit to is your dog. When you can’t show your friends your first successful batch of cookies, you need a solution. Social media platforms are quite handy when it comes to interacting with friends or modeling your favorite outfit. 

Whether it is just messaging directly or posting a picture of your new favorite painting, social media lets us share parts of our lives with the people we cannot physically see right now. Most importantly, it’s a great way to remind ourselves that, although it’s tough right now, it is going to be okay. Social media can be used to spread supportive messages as well as keep students up to date with each other and feel involved even though everyone is isolated.

Social media, however, is not the only way to stay connected or express oneself. On March 20 of this year, “Animal Crossing New Horizons” was released. This video game seems to allow people to relax during these stressful times. Soon after it released, players discovered that the wholesome game easily put a smile on their face. 

“Animal Crossing New Horizons” lets you use your creativity to turn a deserted island into your personally designed town by styling your own character, clothes and house. Along with these features, the game allows you to keep in touch with friends and family who also have the game by exploring each other’s island or just going fishing together. “Animal Crossing New Horizons” is a simple, relaxing way to keep in touch with loved ones while having some wholesome fun.

Although it sometimes feels like the opposite, we have so many options when it comes to social technology. Use social media to show off your new talents or how good you’ve gotten at dancing. Meet with friends in a virtual town you created yourself. It may not be the same as meeting in real life, but it’s all we have right now and it is better than nothing at all. It is the perfect time to use technology to spread the joy or simple silliness that many of us need right now, so why not take advantage of it?

High school student gives tips on success through organization


Being organized is something that many people believe to be essential to our day to day lives. People have their personal views on how organization is achieved as it may come easier in small or large steps. In a system of organization it is important to develop these skills because not only will they be helpful to your personal life, but it is also seen as an important trait and skill to have when finding a job or even your future dream school. Here are five tips for becoming organized:

Make time

To be able to succeed in becoming organized, you must be able to make plenty of time for the area that may need your attention. This must become a habit or a part of your daily schedule for any form of order to occur.

Keep what you can handle

In any job, school, or task needed to be completed, always do what you know you can handle. It is great to push your limits but not to an extent where you can not handle the situation. It is best to learn to grow with the circumstances given to you.


For any possibility of anything happening, you must be motivated until the very end. A good thought would be to think about what could have been gained by organization or what time and money could have been saved. You must maintain motivation if you are to complete the skill of organization. 

Create a routine

Creating a routine allows any attempt at becoming organized to become permanent and it creates a much easier environment around you to become more coordinated. Each time this routine is repeated, the easier it will become and the less time this task may require. It is reported by Blurtitout that “reducing our stress levels can easily be done through creating a daily routine” as it makes each passing day much easier without having to stress 

Be patient

Sadly, like most things becoming organized takes time. If you are to ever be able to gain this skill and maybe even master it, you must learn to be patient and learn to build up from the bottom to create a “better you” and environment for you.

These five tips were taken into account for students and adults with school while juggling a job or another task along with their lives. Becoming organized is an essential part of anyone’s lives as it enhances them to be able to complete more parts of their lives and move forward. Organization is an important and difficult skill to maintain over long periods of time. So next time you find yourself stressing because you can’t find that essay you wrote for english, maybe try some of these tips to bring yourself closer to an easier and more organized life.

Photos: Alternative style compliments Citrus Valley fashion


Alternative style and its many varients of expression make up a considerable fashion subculture at Citrus Valley High School. David Monterroso, a sophmore, often wears a very dark and edgy style that complements the fashion of others within his friend group, Jan. 22, 2020 at Citrus Valley High School, Redlands, CA. “It’s reassuring to see someone dressed similar so I know I’m not alone,” says Monterroso. (Kat Sutow / Ethic Photo)

Alternative is often used to describe lifestyles or aesthetics that do not fit in with the expected or “normal” appearance of everyday life, and it’s one of many channels of personal expression. The staples of this style includes accessories like chains, chokers or platform shoes, all of which may look cool or edgy but can prove to be bothersome or in violation of some school dress codes. This may cause issues in trying to keep your preferred aesthetic while working or attending school. 

In a way, the style brings people together as many alternative styles include band or show based accessories, thus showing what a person enjoys. Outward expression of alternative style encourages people to converse with others who have the same interests. This can be very helpful for people looking for new friends or even just finding someone to talk to.

Old objects prove to be helpful momentos


About 40 million Americans suffer from anxiety disorders and studies show comfort objects and breathing techniques can help reduce anxiousness. (Angelita Hutabarat / Ethic Photo)

There are always places wherein we feel uncomfortable, like a party we wish we weren’t invited to, the entire time just longing to be home laying in a cozy bed. Everyone has certain places where they just feel more at ease in. Sometimes even just having something from those places helps us feel more comfortable in normally awkward situations. By wearing the same sweater that we always nap in to a party we don’t want to be at, the party experience wouldn’t be so bad.

Freelance writer for SheKnows, Brianne Hogan, writes how some objects resonate so positively with us because of the personal attachments they represent. Objects are strong channel to lpast memories, especially if they produce a familiar sound or smell. Hogan reports that the portion of our brain that processes smell is “very closely connected” to the part that processes emotion. When you find a beloved stuffed animal from your childhood, you can’t help but reflect on it and smile, reminiscing about all the tea parties and playdates. The movie ticket that you used last week during an outing with friends reminds you of all the fun of that day. Now it may seem pointless to save that ticket, but when you’re going through a tough time and you decide to pull out your box of mementos and find the ticket with all its happy associated memories, it won’t seem so pointless anymore. 

Many of us try to heal our wounds or boost our mood by going on a shopping binge, but this behavior tends to result in regret for all the money that was spent on an impulse. Most of the time, the shiny new products we end up with don’t make us happier in the long run. They rarely remind you of a happier time or smell like a familiar place it’s just an empty object. They may seem cool at first but after a while you may seem to realize that new anything doesn’t have memories. If you’re shopping for an object maybe it’s because you’re searching for something more meaningful. Before you buy it perhaps you already own an object that can make you happy. So next time you feel like you absolutely must have that new item at the store, clean out your closet, look under your bed to find all those objects that bring back many dear memories; and you might decide that your just fine without it.

How your mood influences your style, and vise versa


A study published in “Social Psychological and Personality Science” found that when people wore formal business attire and completed a series of experiments that challenged their cognitive processing abilities, those who dressed up felt “significantly more powerful” and “in control of the situation.” ( Angelita Hutabarat / Ethic Photo)

Will you choose jeans or sweatpants? Is it a cute outfit kind of day or a too tired to care day? These questions and so many more often go through our heads when standing in the closet and contemplating your choices. Waking up early for school isn’t usually one of our happiest moments and sometimes it can affect how we dress. Similarly, staying up late will probably make you reconsider carefully selecting your outfit for the next day. When it comes down to it, choosing our outfit for the day all depends on our mood. A simple yet stylish outfit can brighten your mood whereas an extremely comfy outfit might make you more tired. 

Fashion is not just about wearing clothes that fit the current trends; it is more about finding clothes that make you feel good and confident in your own skin. As nobody has the same personality or style, you shouldn’t choose what to wear based solely on the fashion choices of others. Your clothes should make you, and only you, feel good. Fashion is about finding a way to express yourself and show the world who you are.

Many people choose to dress according to what their mood is telling them to that day. Just as our mental state can affect how we dress, the clothing we wear can either confirm or challenge our mood. For example, you might dress in bright, happy colors when you are feeling the exact opposite to cheer yourself up. Modern science suggest that mood can be influenced just by viewing certain “happier” colors such as specific shades of yellow or green. 

Cognitive psychologists Hajo Adam and Adam Galinksy from Northwestern University have found that the clothing we wear affects our psychological states, as well as our performance levels. For this tendency they coined the term, “enclothed cognition.” Enclothed cognition describes the effect clothes have on an individual’s emotions, attitudes and judgements. It can be seen when you wear a certain outfit that you feel looks flattering or a favorite of yours, and the resulting effect is overall improved confidence or a more optimistic outlook. 

Clothes affect our mood whether we notice it or not. They can make us feel powerful, upset, confident or insecure. We all have our good and bad days, and that’s perfectly fine. So why not let your fashion preferences express you and your feelings every day?

Outfit tips for the unpredictable weather


Fall season 2019 in the Inland Empire has been experiencing weather that can only be described as bipolar. Technically we are approaching the “winter” season, where in the IE winter weather averages a whopping 70 degrees.

This is unfortunate for those who enjoy bundling up in cute winter outfits. Most are rarely able to do so because mother nature always plays everyone and makes it super chilly in the morning but hot in the afternoon, so instead everyone ends up wearing a summer outfit and just bearing the cool morning weather.

Students from Redlands East Valley High School offered their input on this subject and how they choose their outfits.

Eileen Carrillo, REV sophomore, said, “ I put my hoodie on and I don’t have anything under so when I get really hot in the afternoon, I can’t take it off, and that makes me feel annoyed.”

Destiny Gonzalez, REV sophomore, said, “ I choose the wrong outfit in the morning, like I’ll choose a warm outfit, and then I start hating it throughout the day because it gets hot.”

 Here are a few outfit hacks to combat the bipolar weather.

1. Layer with a jacket. Wear your outfit of choice, but throw a cute jacket over it that does not take away from the outfit itself. Then, later in the day when it warms up you can take the jacket off but still look cute. One must not underestimate the power of a jean jacket so that should definitely be one of the first choices. A plus is that jean jackets look really cute tied around your waist.

2. Wear a long sleeve sweater. If you do not want to wear a jacket, when it gets hot, cuff the sleeves up and you will immediately feel cooler while still maintaining a look.

3. This tip is actually a trend of today. Wear a long sleeve shirt under a regular cropped or uncropped  t-shirt. It looks super cute and trendy, and surprisingly, even when it does get hot, you will still feel cool even with the long sleeve. If this is not the case for you and you still get hot, obviously you can just take the long sleeve off.

These tips are simple and easy to do, especially in a time crunch. Say you pick out  a winter outfit without seeing on the weather app that it is going to get warm,  you can just use one of these tips.

Featured Photo: Above is Cole Dabbs, a freshman, and Nayelli Bermudez, a senior, outside in the REV quad at 2 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 22. (Alyssa Ornela/Ethic Photo)

Nine hobbies to soothe the mind


With students settling into classes and new work loads, it’s harder than ever to find time to relax and take care of ourselves. But when we do find time, it is often spent fulfilling daily necessities or perusing on our phones, leaving us feeling unproductive. To combat this prevailing issue, picking up one of the following hobbies can allow you to have fun whilst destressing and calming the mind.

By providing an alternative way to spend time and mental energy, hobbies offers a person physical and mental health benefits and overall improve day to day life. Graphic design created using Autodesk software. (Angelita Hutabarat/ Ethic Media)

Listening to Music

Whether it’s an upbeat pop song or a slow ballad from an unknown indie band, music is the quickest and most efficient way to relax. It can be played while you’re whittling away at your work or simply enjoyed as it is. Countless studies have shown that music can improve your mood and reduce anxiety


Break out the paint brushes and pop on a Bob Ross tutorial as this hobby flexes your creative muscles. Painting for fun shifts your energy toward finishing a project that doesn’t have a strict deadline to worry about.


Although this may seem obvious, many people don’t attempt to meditate in their free time. Meditation can clear your mind of stress and calm your nerves, improving your general physical and mental health. WebMD explains that by meditating we enter a “state of deep relaxation in which our breathing, pulse rate, blood pressure, and metabolism are decreased,” which, in turn, helps “control stress, reduce anxiety, improve cardiovascular health, and achieve a greater capacity for relaxation.” All you need for meditation is yourself and some quiet, so it’s completely free!


Despite copious amounts of required reading in classes, books are actually interesting!

With loads of authors and genres, novels can transport you to a different world and stimulate your mind. When you find a book you like, it will be hard to stop and set it down.


Many may immediately think of the new bullet journal trend, but journaling can just be writing down your thoughts. It can be a form of catharsis by alleviating any bottled up emotions or feelings. Additionally, it’s a nice keepsake to look back upon later.

Making Friendship Bracelets

Even if you don’t have friends to make bracelets with, it’s a peaceful past time to indulge in. With enough embroidery thread, you can make a variety of bracelet styles as infinite design patterns and tutorials are available online. The diligent work that goes into a friendship bracelet makes the end result just as rewarding as the relaxation of making it.

Going for a Walk

After spending the majority of your school day inside classrooms, going for a walk can clear your mind of unwarranted thoughts and stress. Sometimes it’s gratifying to simply appreciate Mother Nature, so stop and smell the roses!


There is at least one thing in our lives we need to organize, so why not do it now? Organization can declutter your mind and reduce anxiety caused by misplaced items while being productive simultaneously. So next time you sense rising tension within yourself, try and channel your inner Marie Kondo.

Hanging Out with Friends

Surrounding yourself with people whose company you enjoy can help you forget your worries. Friends can be a support system when you need to talk, and it’s proven they can boost your mood. The Mayo Clinic reports that those who have strong friendships minimize the likehood of “depression, high blood pressure and an unhealthy body mass index (BMI).” Just pick an activity, date and some friends to create a recipe for a carefree day.

Bonus Hobby

And if all else fails, Netflix will always be there when you’re bored.

Photo gallery: Students’ style speaks for itself


Redlands East Valley High School senior Dagen Donaldson wears a RIPNDIP shirt with cuffed pants and Nike socks. (Alyssa Ornelas/ Ethic Photo)
Redlands East Valley High School junior Renee Webb wears a white t-shirt featuring Van Gogh’s “Starry Night,” with hoop earrings. (Alyssa Ornelas/ Ethic Photo)
Redlands East Valley Doll’s Club leaders show off their retro-inspired outfits during Club Rush week. (Alyssa Ornelas / Ethic Photo)
Citrus Valley High School senior Gael Perez expresses his style with a graphic tee and plaid pants. (Ethan Dewri / Ethic Photo)
Citrus Valley High School senior Angelita Hutabarat exhibits her style with her Freddie King album cover t-shirt and checkered pants. (Ethan Dewri / Ethic Photo)
Citrus Valley High School senior Queennie Nguyen expresses her style by wearing a black polo with a plaid skirt and a chain belt. “I dress really femininely with a dash of some edginess and current trends,” said Nguyen. (Ethan Dewri / Ethic Photo)

Doodling in class is more beneficial than distracting to students


A student doodles an image of mountain landscape during passing period. (ETHAN DEWRI / Ethic Photo)

Doodling: that thing you do when you are bored in class and longing for anything to pass the time, so you grab your pen and aimlessly draw on the nearest scrap of paper. 

However, aimless drawing is not all that doodling entails. According to recent studies, doodling encourages improved memory, better concentration, stress relief and enhanced creativity. 

In class, while your teacher is lecturing, doodling can actually help you recall the information better later. While you probably start doodling with the intention to ease your boredom, it ultimately provides a way to maintain focus during a lecture.

Redlands East Valley sophomore Alicia Gullon said, “I usually doodle when I am bored…doodling alleviates boredom I guess. It also helps to keep you moving so you don’t fall asleep in class.”

According to Harvard Health Publishing, a study was conducted in 2009 by psychologist Jackie Andrade to test the relationship between doodling and memory retention. Andrade had 40 people listen to a two-and-a-half-minute rambling voicemail in which half of the group doodled and the other half did not. In the end, the group that doodled was able to better recollect the details of the voicemail and overall “recalled 29 percent more information.” 

In addition to improved memory retention, doodling can also provide stress relief for many. A person who doodles their emotions can help relieve the negative stress in their life. According to Vox, “the repetition and rhythmic motions of sketching” triggers a relaxation reply. 

REV freshman Kelly Welch said, “I doodle because it’s a quick way to practice drawing, and sometimes I just do it impulsively. Mostly I draw eyes on my hand and faces on paper. Doodling is really helpful in taking away tension and stress from school too.”

Instead of a written journal, doodling can serve as a journal in drawing form. The various drawn expressions can indicate the artist’s emotions or illustrate their surroundings at the time that they doodled. People can doodle what they did that day or simply how they felt; this could appear more visually artistic and appealing than if they had written their feelings down.

Lastly, doodling can be an outlet for creativity. Even if you are doodling something aimlessly, you are still using your brain to come up with drawings that overall broaden your creativity and imagination. 

“When you doodle, you are setting the base to something greater. Your skills develop and your mind can reach to the ends of the world to create something small, yet something that you’re proud of,” said REV sophomore Jo-Ann Lumintang.

Lumintang adds, “I doodle to help me practice what I love. It gives me time to process things and let my mind loose, without any repercussions. Personally, I love to doodle magic items or people. Something small yet memorable.” 

It is time we eliminate the idea that doodling is a distraction and praise it for its many benefits. Doodling can be much more than a few scribbles on a piece of paper; the next time you happen to be doodling, just know that you are broadening your mind.

Premium Grammarly accounts offered to all RUSD students


Grammarly is an online writing tool that helps people communicate more effectively. “Millions of users rely on Grammarly every day to make their messages, documents, and social media posts clear, mistake-free, and impactful,” according to the software company (Photo via Grammarly website).

Grammarly is a free-to-use website that was made to fix any document for proper grammar, punctuation and sentence structures. The site also gives better synonyms to use for words that do not fit the subject of the text. 

Even though it can do everything from spell checking to word choice, it cannot be used to its fullest potential without the premium version of the application. However, some will not go the extra mile to pay $20 every month for it. 

Well, you’re in luck! If you recall, on April 2019, all students should have received an announcement through Gmail that revealed “the good people at Redlands Unified School District have partnered with [Grammarly] to offer their members a premium account.” This is a big deal and should be taken advantage of by every student, as Grammarly can be used as a website or downloaded as a software.

This rare opportunity gives students access to premium features, such as thorough descriptions of why a sentence fragment is incorrect. The writer can choose their intended writing style so Grammarly can edit the text efficiently and vocabulary enhancement suggests alternatives for overused terms. As a bonus, Grammarly can also run a plagiarism check, which searches over a billion pages across the web to see if your text has been used in other works.

For those who enjoy sprinkling unique words in their text, Grammarly compares your writing with other users to score your vocabulary and legibility. All it takes is an account registration and students can start writing and editing like a pro. To make things easier, click on ‘Continue with Google’ to speed-up the process when logging in for the first time. Remember to sign in with your school email, as the premium accounts have been given to those specifically.

Speaking of email, Grammarly sends you a “Weekly Writing Update” to show your progress and level of productivity on the site. The weekly update also shows your top three mistakes overall and gives you information that can help fix those mistakes.

Opportunities like this should not be brushed off. Grammarly is a must-have writing tool that joins the ranks of academic sites that are used because of their effectiveness and reliability such as Quizlet, Vocabulary and Khan Academy. Grammarly is a trump card that every student should utilize and Grammarly will help them strive to become competent and engaging writers on their own.

Opinion: A freshman’s journey progresses through stages


We hear a great amount from seniors that are leaving our school and heading off to start their own life. Congratulations to the class of 2019 for all the work you put in to make it to where you are today. Venturing out into the public world is a pretty big deal, and is expected to change you a bit. However, we can sometimes forget how important our first year of high school is. During this time we go through so many different changes, including changes with our emotions, habits and social life. This change is especially apparent in deciding what we want to do when we get older. Losing friends because they went to another school, discovering your new favorite subject, maybe finding a whole new side to you, all set the stage for when it is your turn to step out into the world. Stepping through those gates onto campus is a realization that a very long journey awaits.

Citrus Valley High School student walking down the hallway. (BELLA ESPINOZA/ Ethic Photo)

The initial step

This step can almost seem illusive, like it hasn’t actually set in yet. This is when it is the first day of high school, and it just feels a little strange. You don’t feel like you belong, like the next day you can go back to middle school and everything will go back to normal. What has not caught up with you yet is that this is going to be a giant influence on you for the next four years of your life. It’s intimidating, looking around and seeing nothing familiar: the lunch table you and your friends would always sit at or maybe your meeting spot to talk during passing periods. All those things are gone, and you can feel so stranded. Or maybe you will jump through the gates with your head held high and a gut feeling that you are going to nail this year and conquer all the fears that had you worrying before. That’s totally great and will definitely pay off in the end. However, no matter which way you choose to start your new adventure, it is going to be a long road.

“A journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step” -Lao Tzu

Settling in

At this point, you have probably memorized where all your classrooms are, found a place to sit at lunch and most likely gravitated towards familiar faces you recognize from your middle school career. You may not remember everybody’s name in class yet, but you’re working on it. It can finally start to seem real, that you aren’t going back and this is what has become your new life. Everyone is different; some may feel perfectly at home and seem like they already know everyone at school. Others can take a lot longer to feel at ease, and are not willing to open up so easily. You start to notice that it is different from middle school, but not just in an academic way. Going from knowing everyone’s name and waving to people you knew in the hallway,  to somewhere much bigger: a bigger campus, bigger people, bigger options. Then you start to wonder, where is it that I belong in this big, new world.

“If we’re growing, we’re always going to be out of our comfort zone.” -John Maxwell

Opening up to new

Whether you want it to happen or not, new things will start to happen, which can be both good and bad. Seeing as how there’s many more options available to you, that applies with friends too. There’s so many more people, so you are bound to meet someone new that you get along with. Once that happens, it opens you up to meeting tons of new people as your new friend will introduce you to their friends and so on. Sadly, this also means that some friends will leave. Not all friends are going to stay with you your entire life, and some come and go. This is something that can be not so easy to open up to. It is so hard to think someone that has been the closest to you all through middle school and elementary can leave and become a stranger again. Although it hurts to see a friend drift away from you, you have to remember the important part. You will meet more people that you may get along with even better. It won’t be the last time a friend leaves, but it will not be the last friend you ever make either. The friends that stick around are the ones you want to keep anyway, and, if it doesn’t work out, then it was probably never meant to be. You have to be open to meeting and making new friends as well as letting some go. Keeping an open mind is a very important part of starting high school; there’s so many new options and difficult decisions that you won’t be able to make and move on if you are not willing to try.

“Keeping your mind open in the face of uncertainty is the single most powerful secret of unleashing your creative potential” -Michael Gelb

Finding your safe place

Going into high school you can look around almost anywhere and immediately see all the different groups of friends: the athletic kids, the group that’s always studying and working hard, the gamers always talking about some new release. So many different people that have all found their place. Now where is your place exactly? What’s important to remember is that you are not living this alone. There’s plenty of other freshman that have to feel the same way you do. So why not talk to someone new? Say “hi” to the quiet kid in the back of your class, or say “hello” to the loud one in the front. You never know who you may just click with, so keep your mind open and experiment. However, you never need to change yourself no matter what; no matter how much you feel like you need to fit into a certain group, changing is not the answer. You won’t be happy when you constantly have to put on a mask that hides your true self. People that are similar to you and share the same ideas as you attract each other. As long as what you are portraying is actually you, you’ll draw in people just like you. Even if they don’t have the same preferences or opinions as you, as long as you enjoy hanging out with them there’s no problem. Don’t get caught up in feeling like you must have a certain clique. Maybe you and your group don’t have a title. You aren’t the sporty ones or the super academic ones, but you don’t need to be. They are your friends, and that’s all that matters. You don’t need a title to be a book filled with great times and fun adventures.

Buckling up

Now the year comes to an end, all the struggling from this big change is over. By this time, it’s just school, not an unfamiliar place or somewhere you are visiting; it’s normal now. There’s no more wondering when you get to go back because you know that door is closed and this is the only one open. You’ve got a comfortable group you talk to at lunch everyday and new acquaintances you wave to in the hallway. Maybe you have a new set of routines to get you through your long days, and you have officially calculated the exact amount of sleep you need to stay awake through your classes the next day. You’ve probably decided which classes are your favorite, and which ones aren’t exactly the best part of your day. Perhaps you have picked your favorite spot to get some peace and quiet, like studying in the library or sitting in the shade and reading a good book. You have discovered the little things you can focus on to help you in stressful times, like when the school serves your favorite lunch or you get to go to your favorite class of the day. Either way the hecticness has died down and you are pretty used to how things work around here. Now, of course, you don’t know everything; you’ll meet new friends and lose more too. You will discover new classes that you are interested in, and there’s bound to be more classes that are going to be tough. This year is setting you up for your future to come, so you can’t push it aside. Build yourself a good base in the beginning to make it less difficult in the future.You have to stay on top of things because there’s certain to be obstacles and lots of them. So buckle up because it’s only the beginning, and you are ready for the next adventure.

“You must go on adventures to find out where you truly belong” -Unknown

Opinion: Keep your mental health in mind while keeping up with school

A student sits at a desk filled with homework, Advanced Placement test prep books, and text books. (BRANDON SAGLAM/ Ethic photo)


High school is a very stressful time in life. Between getting good grades, thinking about college, and choosing what career you want to pursue, it may seem too much for a teen who just wants to do well.

Teens generally want to make sure they do all those things right and make good choices, but for many, doing all that and keeping their mental health up is a struggle. There are many reasons why the end of the school year is unhealthy for young teens. The goal of this article to encourage students to keep their mental health in mind while also keeping up with school.

Students feel pressure from the start of middle school to get good grades in order to attend college. This worry over getting good grades for college as early as middle school or freshman year in high school exists before many even have any idea about what they will do in their future.

Researchers in Sweden recently conducted a study published in BMC Psychiatry, on how school affects adolescents’ mental health. The researchers admit that much more information is needed on teaching and social environments before reaching conclusive evidence, but so far they have found “Longitudinal studies indicate strong associations between school proficiency and indicators of mental health throughout adulthood.”

In high school, keeping up with school work and taking care of oneself can be made more challenging if unaware of how much a mental break is needed. Taking a mental or physical break can mean different things for different people. Stretching, laying down, or taking a nap are some examples of how some prevent from getting too strung out.

While strong mental health can be a process, it is also something that people can start working on at any time. In the 2015 Psychology Today article, “9 Ways You Can Improve Your Mental Health Today,” Dr. Patricia Harteneck offers suggestions on how to keep the mind and body healthy. For instance, “Tell yourself something positive” is the first thing listed.

The second recommendation is to “Tell yourself something you are grateful for, find something you are grateful for, and let it fill your heart, and bask in that feeling.”

Out of all Harteneck’s nine steps, the most helpful one for high school students could be, “Taking a break, in those moments where it all seems like too much, step away, and do anything but whatever was stressing you out until you feel a little better.” Taking a break from things that are causing stress or adding to feelings of being overwhelmed can help not just with decreasing stress, but also increasing happiness.

Overall, there are many solutions to keep one from being stressed out. Listen to your body, and if you feel like you need a break or maybe your body is barely making it through the day, it is most likely correct. Don’t push yourself to keep going, for you know what you feel and can tell when you need to put a hold on things. Be able to recognize when enough is enough.

Journaling has many benefits


Photo of assorted student journals. (BRANDON SAGLAM/ Ethic Photo)

At first glance, journaling may seem like a joke. How could writing down ideas that are already in your head help you work through problems? Well, take me for example. I thought the same thing, but once I actually took it seriously and started writing, it opened my eyes to how much it helps.

Journaling can have many different uses and can help achieve many different goals. For instance, Psychotherapist Maud Purcell, in “The Health Benefits of Journaling,” addresses how journaling helps clarify thoughts and feelings and also is a  stress management tool. Additionally, it can be used to more effectively solve problems while also helping you learn more about yourself.

Journaling originates from 10th century Japan, according to Michael d’Estries in “8 Famous Visionaries Who Kept a Journal.” It was once used as a form of documentation, but in today’s modern society it is almost the exact opposite. He also points out that many successful people of the past have kept journals, such as Albert Einstein, Marie Curie, Mark Twain, and Charles Darwin. Journaling is supposed to help because it uses your left brain, leaving the right brain to be creative with the writing.

People used to write diaries about their daily life so that others could read it and remember that time period. However,  in today’s world, it is used more for personal reasons, like helping one get through a situation, after which it is often discarded.

People journal because they can tell a story similar to a rant or vent, but there are no repercussions. Paper will never judge, question or interrupt you; it is just your thoughts are being written out to make things easier to understand and process, which can help you work through tough situations or feelings without outside pressure or opinions.

Writing in a journal could also be put in place of meditation since it is relaxing and brings clarity to life problems according to various studies cited in “83 Benefits of Journaling for Depression, Anxiety, and Stress Management” from

The best thing about journaling is probably that it connects you to yourself. It gives you the chance to see a situation from a different angle and find the best way to deal with problems.

ASMR provides a way for some to relax


A student types on a mac keyboard. The sound of typing on a keyboard is considering soothing by some. (MIA DELMONICO/ Ethic Photo)

ASMR stands for autonomous sensory meridian response, which describes a feeling of euphoric tingling and relaxation that can come over someone when they watch certain videos or hear certain sounds. ASMR is a tool that people who have trouble with sleeping or focusing believe will help them sleep or relax and can cause them to get a tingling sensation. An example is when a person taps something repeatedly, which could be seen—or rather heard—as soothing.

When people hear tapping or soft talking, it stimulates the brain, which causes it to relax and calm down. YouTubers who make ASMR videos might also listen to ASMR themselves. However, there are many individuals who do not like ASMR because of the way the noises disturb them when they listen to it. The sounds that the people produce might make some very uncomfortable.

There are many types of ASMR, like tapping, tongue clicking, slime, etc. The creators who do ASMR might have a preference for what kind of ASMR they want to do or might do ASMR based on what their viewers want to watch. Some ASMR includes roleplaying, which is when a person dresses up as a character and does ASMR as they usually would but while portraying that character.

Viewers might want their creator to ask them what kind of ASMR they want to do, as many people have different inclinations towards different types of ASMR. If the creators listen to the opinions of their viewers, then it will help the viewers achieve what they want to get out of watching the ASMR video.

People will always have different opinions on the topic, but not everyone has to watch it. ASMR will still be just a thing for people to enjoy and use to relax.

For those interested in the sounds of ASMR, but may not have access to a nearby pencil-tapper or slime, a youtube search for “ASMR” yields a variety of distinct sights and sounds that might be soothing to some.

Opinion: Spending less time on devices can make you happier



In a world that is so full of new and constantly changing technology, we sometimes forget that maybe every once in a while the phone needs a break.

It’s easy to see why you would choose to do everything on your phone or computer; you can do almost anything on a screen. You can talk to your friends, watch TV and maybe scroll through your social media.

Every once in a while it’s a good idea to come up with new ways to enjoy yourself without the electronics. Here are some ways to feel good and have a good time without staring at the screen.  

Start by making a schedule of times that tell you when your on-screen and off-screen times are. Try to start by keeping yourself off electronics for a short amount of time, then increase the time after a while.

If you enjoy the outdoors, think of something you can do outside. Maybe even get some exercise in and go for a walk while you are out there. If you have any pets, you can go outside and spend time with them; they would certainly enjoy it. There are plenty of hobbies you can do in your backyard or a park of some kind. You never know, you could even secretly have a green thumb.

Having friends to talk to is also a great way to get off your electronics, especially when they could use a break too. Make time for your friends to hold a get together that does not involve technology. Try board games, puzzles, drawing or any other activities. There are plenty of ways to keep entertained without using technology.

Restricting technology use can also leave you in a happier mood as doing so reduces the amount of stress you have. “Life Advancer” tells how “studies by the happiness research institute found that people who avoided social media for just a week were in a much better mood than before because they were present and alive.”

Research done by the Pew Research Center showed that most people that use social media depend on it to provide their news. Depending on these social media platforms so much makes it hard to stray far from social media. Soon, you may find yourself in something close to addiction.

So maybe take a break from all the news, and just think about the present and what’s going on in your world. By not worrying about the rest of the world around you, you will avoid giving yourself more unnecessary stress.

When we take time off of technology, it can really help us see all the issues it was created while we were on it. While some technology can’t hurt, it’s also very important to remember to take breaks.

As research shows, keeping off can improve your health both mentally and physically. So when you’ve spent all day scrolling through your phone, think up another way to spend the rest of your time. Maybe you’ll find a new favorite hobby while you are at it.

Is Glossier overhyped?


When it comes to makeup, everyone has their one preferences. Glossier has several skincare products for “glowing, dewy skin” and makeup products that are meant to be simple and lightweight. Like every other makeup brand, some products are worth the price whereas others are questionable.

Launched back in 2014, Glossier is a minimalist makeup brand that stresses the “no-makeup makeup look.” It focuses on enhancing the individual rather than full coverage.

Emily Weiss, the current CEO and founder of Glossier, first started with a blog called “Into the Gloss,” where she and other beauty bloggers wrote product reviews, tips and more. The brand has pop-up shops worldwide, but the majority of customers purchase their products through the website. Glossier is known for its trendy, millennial pink theme and relatively affordable products, though the products do lean towards the pricier side of makeup. Bestsellers include the Boy Brow (a brow shaper), Cloud Paint (a cream blush with six buildable shades), Generation G (sheer matte lipsticks that were recently reformulated), Milky Jelly Cleanser (a gentle daily face cleanser) and Solution (a daily face exfoliator known for clearing acne).

ÑSome believe that Glossier’s products are more about aesthetics instead of effectiveness. For example, the Soothing Face Mist, a rosewater and aloe mist meant to hydrate your skin, looks aesthetic, but reviewers rate it a 3 out of 5, making it one of the lowest rated products on the official Glossier website. Reviewers say the mist has terrible packaging, irritates their skin and isn’t effective.

The Stretch Concealer is one of the site’s bestsellers; however, according to reviews, it has minimal coverage, so people looking for full coverage may want to avoid it. The concealer also only comes in five shades: light, medium, dark, deep and rich, so it’s not universal.

On the contrary, the famous Cloud Paints are rated 4.5 out of 5, and people compliment how vibrant and universal the shades are. Another famous product, the Priming Moisturizer, is a buildable moisturizer that creates a dewy, fresh look. Reviewers say the moisturizer smoothes out their complexion and makes their skin look plumper.

Glossier’s Soothing Face Mist (picture via Glossier Website)

In terms of price, products range from $9 (the travel size Milky Jelly Cleanser) to $60 (Glossier You, a perfume). Fan favorites, like the Cloud Paints, may be worth the $18, but items like the Balm Dot Com ($12) may not be. The Balm Dot Com is a multipurpose lip balm described as a daily skin essential, but many reviewers dislike the product due to the need of constant re-application. In addition, it’s expensive compared to similar products so it may not be worth the $12.

Most items on Glossier have cheaper dupes, such as The Ordinary’s Niacinamide Serum for Glossier’s Super Pure Serum. Glossier’s packaging is cute, trendy and follows their millennial pink theme. Items come in an aesthetic pink bubble wrap bag, and the box they’re shipped in is pink on the inside and has a quote.

One of Glossier’s bestsellers, the Balm Dot Com, comes in six flavors.
(picture via Glossier Website)

Overall, Glossier items generally depend on the customer’s preferences. If they’re looking for simple products, this brand may be heaven to them. However, if they’re looking for something with more full coverage and heavy duty, Glossier may not be the one. Make sure to read reviews before spending hard earned money on a product.

Holiday DIY gift projects under 10 minutes and $10


Can’t think of any gift ideas for your friends and family?  Here are some cheap and easy gifts that you can make in under 10 minutes for $10.

Santa’s Sleigh

Items needed:

  • Kit Kat bar
  • Two candy canes
  • Plastic bag
  • Santa candy
  • Mini candies
  • Ribbon
  • Hot glue

Step-by-step instructions for Santa’s sleigh DIY gift. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic photo)

1.) For the base of the sleigh, hot glue the candy canes to the bottom of the Kit Kats and let it sit.
2.)Then, fill the plastic bag with mini candies and tie it up with ribbon.
3.) Lastly, hot glue the bag of candies and the Santa candy to the sleigh and you’ve got yourself a simple Christmas treat.

Final Santa’s sleigh DIY gift. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic photo)

Candy Cane Hot Chocolate

Items needed:

  • Mini marshmallows
  • Jar
  • Chocolate chips
  • Crushed candy cane
  • Hot chocolate mix

Materials needed for candy cane hot chocolate DIY gift. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic photo)


( Make sure they are in even layers )

  1. Pour in hot chocolate mix.
  2. Pour in chocolate chips.
  3. Pour in marshmallows.
  4. Pour in crushed candy canes.
  5. Label jar.

The final example of candy cane hot chocolate DIY gift. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic photo)

Present Boxes

Items needed:

  • Paper towel roll
  • Thick ribbon
  • Thin ribbon
  • Tape

Materials and steps for DIY present boxes. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic photo)


  1. Cut paper towel roll in half.
  2. Fold paper towel roll in half.
  3. Fold in creases on both sides of towel roll.
  4. Fill bow with small gift.
  5. Wrap thick ribbon around the center.
  6. Then wrap a thin ribbon around the whole box in a present wrapping style.

The final example of DIY present boxes. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic photo)

Candy Ornaments

Items needed:

  • Small candies ( ex. M&M’S)
  • Empty, plastic ornaments
  • Gift tags

Materials required for DIY candy ornaments. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic photo)


  1. Fill ornaments with candy.
  2. Put name tag on it.

The final product of DIY candy ornaments. (ELLA FITZPATRICK/ Ethic photo)

Baking with Bella: Grandma’s chocolate pie



Family gatherings during Thanksgiving call for delicious meals and tasty homemade desserts. Chocolate pie is a classic holiday treat, perfect for your contribution to the table filled with many delectable foods. This quick and easy chocolate pie recipe uses common ingredients that can be found in your kitchen cabinets right at home. This recipe is from


½ cup cocoa

¼ cup cornstarch

3 egg yolks, beaten

1½ cups sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

¼ teaspoon salt

2 cups milk


Always clean work surface and wash your hands before cooking. In a pot, mix cocoa, cornstarch, beaten egg yolks, sugar, vanilla and salt. Add milk gradually over medium heat while stirring. Cook until thick. Pour into pre-baked pie shell and refrigerate.

Top 5 Instagram worthy picture locations in downtown Redlands


From Orange Street alley to all of the other murals in Downtown Redlands, there certainly are plenty of aesthetically pleasing locations perfect for your Instagram feed.

The mural of the lion is the perfect mix of graffiti and art. Someone wrote their name on it, starting a trend that many have followed. This mural is located in Orange Street alley across from Cheesewalla.

These angel wings can be found in the Orange Street alley closer to Fifth Street. According to the Redlands Daily Facts, Hannah’s wings was painted in memory of Hannah Ahlers, a Redlands East Valley High School graduate and mother of three, who died at The Route 91 Harvest Music Festival in Las Vegas on Oct. 2, 2017. Ahlers’s family owns Redland’s Jewelers on North 5th Street in Redlands and had wanted to have a painting dedicated to Hannah, so they hired the mural artist, Christine Coates, to do the job. The combination of the painted rustic red brick wall, human-sized white wings and the sentiment behind it makes it a special spot for a photo.

The umbrellas in the Orange Street alley are one of the most popular picture locations in Downtown Redlands. The array of vivid bright umbrellas spans across Orange Street to Fifth Street through the alley. With approximately 420 pink, blue, yellow and green umbrellas in the alley, one will become obsessed with the Instagram photos to come.

A Shop Called Quest is located on East Citrus Avenue. This shop is a notable picture location because of its collage of various stickers on the door and its compilation of comic book character posters, such as Batman and Adventure Time.

The “Good Is The New Gangster” sign is located in the clothing shop For Good on East State Street. The blue neon sign is surrounded by dozens of potted plants beneath it. Having the sign there right as someone walks in makes it a nice picture spot.  

Honorable Mentions:

Located next to Furry Face on East State Street.

(MIA ARANDA/ Ethic Photo)

Located at Ed Hales Park.

Located in Orange Street alley.

(MIA ARANDA/ Ethic Photo)

Located on Sixth Street.

(MIA ARANDA/ Ethic Photo)

Located in Backstreet Alley with the cross streets of 5th Street and East State Street.

Exploring the adventures of an introvert


Being an introvert causes a lot of common misunderstandings among other people. People that don’t understand what being an introvert means will sometimes take things the wrong way or even get offended.  

The word introvert comes from the Latin word intro, which means “inward.” This can be connected to the meaning of being an introvert because, instead of being a person that communicates a lot to the world around them, you tend to prefer to focus more on things closer to you and are more comfortable with listening to internal thoughts and feelings rather than big groups of other people. It’s nothing personal, but just what are they more comfortable with.

A lot of the time people can end up getting their feelings hurt because they misunderstand an introvert’s intentions. When they tell you they would honestly rather go home than hang out with you at the library, it is not because they hate you. They find it more enjoyable or comfortable to just have time for themselves and enjoy things they can do at home. Some people really would rather go to the library, while others to an after school party, and that’s totally fine; it’s just a personal preference. When they tell you no, it does not mean that they are a mean or rude person; they are being honest. It doesn’t mean you cannot be friends with them, it just might take a bit longer to get close to them.

Having friends that are both introverts and extroverts can be beneficial to both. Sometimes introverts can remind an excited friend when it is time to calm down or when this is something that should be kept private. Introverts can benefit from having friends who are extroverts as well. Having a friend that is comfortable with the world all around them really helps and sometimes forces introverts to get out there and experience new things that they never would have done on their own. When an introvert is forced to do something, like talk to new people, present in front of a class or anything of the sort, having a friend that is confident next to them can make them feel a lot safer. These two different personalities can complement each other really effectively sometimes.

When you are as withdrawn as this, it can affect your daily life. Something as simple as presenting to the class can get you stressing all day until the class is over. When you try to avoid social interactions, people may start to see you as the type of person who does not want to make friends, so it is harder to get along and blend into the high school environment. Sometimes in class, when the teacher asks for answers, you do not raise your hand even though you understand the material. With the participation points you have to get for an A or when the teacher randomly calls on kids to answer the question, teachers that do not understand how you feel make it really hard to participate in class, especially when they tell you not to be shy and get over it. This can really infuriate you, and most of the time distract you from the lecture.

So although introverts may seem withdrawn or reserved, they are just as friendly as any other person; it just might be harder for them to show it. When they do not run up and greet you right away, try not to get offended. They do not hate you; it’s just going to take some more time to get on their safe side. You may think they do not actually want to talk to you, but they may just be waiting for you to take the first step. If you are that person that stays quiet when you actually want to get closer to another person, try to put yourself out there more.

This is not to say that anyone needs to change who they are, they just may need to work at finding those who complement and appreciate each other.

(Image via “The Collective”)

D.I.Y Halloween costumes that are a creative alternative to store-bought costumes


Halloween is the time of the year to express yourself and dress up as anyone or anything you have ever wanted to be. These are just a few ideas for Halloween costumes that are fun and easy to create with your friends.

Salt and Pepper Materials needed to complete your DIY costume
These materials can be found at Walmart, or mostly any craft store        

  • A plain white shirt: $5.88-Womens
  • A plain black shirt: $6.45-Mens
  • All white plain jeans: $9.50-Womens
  • All black plain jeans: $9.96-Mens
  • A gray beanie or top each: $5.20
  • A roll of black duct tape: $4.97
  • A roll of white duct tape: $4.26

To create this costume, the only thing you have to do is create a black S on the white shirt and a white P on the black shirt. Then match the white jeans with a white shirt and a black shirt with black jeans.

( A couple dressed up as Salt and Pepper for Halloween from


M & M’s For You and Your squad
You will need a blue, orange, yellow, green or red shirt as well as white pants.

White construction paper is also required for the letter M cut out.

  • Men’s colored t-shirt: $6-$10
  • Non-ripped white jeans: $9-$15
  • White construction paper: $12

You have the option to make a tutu out of the color that matches your M & M color.  If you decide to make a tutu you will need an elastic band, a roll of tulle, and scissors. When you make the tutu, you can tie the tulle to the elastic band instead of sewing it on.

(A group of friends dressed as the M&M’s from



This outfit has very little work involved in the look, so it is easy to recreate.

All these items can also be found at Walmart. You will need:

  • A superman shirt: $9.97
  • A white button-up shirt, short sleeve: $21.99       
  • Any type of tie: $3.79
  • Optional black glasses: $5.00

First, put on the superman shirt.  Then, put on the white button-up shirt on top of it only halfway buttoned up. Afterward, put the tie over the shoulder and the black glasses on.

( A man portraying Superman for Halloween from

For this costume, you will need a green shirt, black pants, and green and brown construction paper.

  • Men’s t-shirt: $4-$7
  • Women’s shirt: $7
  • Men’s jeans: $18
  • Women’s jeans: $20
  • Construction paper: $2-$4

This costume is very simple. Just cut out your avocado, throw on your green shirt and start trick or treating!

(posing as an avocado from


Are Snapchat streaks worth the time?


PHOTOS- Gabe Stanfield- editor (Oct 16- 2018 at 9-54 PM)
According to a poll on Twitter, created by Ethic News, 65% of the 30 users that voted maintained a Snapchat streak for more than one year. The poll lasted from Sept. 30 to Oct. 3, 2018.              (Mia Aranda/ Ethic Photo).

As a part of Snapchat’s ‘Chat 2.0’ app update on March 29, 2016, Snapstreaks were introduced to the public. In case you aren’t familiar with the subject, a Snapstreak is formed on the app, Snapchat, when two people send each other a snap, a picture where you can add filters, text, and stickers, within a window of 24 hours every day. After four days, a fire emoji and a number will appear next to the person you have been exchanging snapchats continuously. The number will increase every day when both parties send a snapchat.

If your streak is getting close to becoming lost, an hourglass emoji will appear next to the user that you have the streak with to remind you and the other person to send something immediately before it’s too late.

If you lose your streak, you will no longer have that number next to the user you were snapchatting. Sometimes, after a person loses a streak, they will even submit a request form to Snapchat in hopes of somehow getting it back. Losing a snapstreak can be devastating, especially when it has lasted for hundreds of days.

Since the start of snapstreaks, Snapchatters have constantly been working to achieve the highest streak as well as gain more streaks with other people, causing the phenomenon to become even more addictive. It is so addicting that Snapchat has been ranked one of the worst social media apps for teen mental health. As of July 15, 2018, the highest Snapstreak, according to TechJunkie’s leaderboard, was 1286 days between two snapchatters named Breck and Curtis lasting until July 6, 2018, approximately three and a half years.

Many people believe that snapstreaks keep friendships close, causing them to last longer. In reality, streaks don’t ensure a close friendship, for they are simply sending blank photos with the word “streaks” on it.

Snapstreaks may seem great, but once a user actually starts a streak, he or she realizes how difficult it takes to maintain one. Often times, many get busy and forget about the streak resulting in it being lost right away. A user may also become stressed constantly wondering if their streak is still alive. Usually to make sure it is not lost, people will send streaks in the morning and at night generally titling them “goodnight streaks” and “good morning streaks.”

In addition, when people go on vacation or even get their phone taken away they will have a friend take care of their streaks by giving them their password and relying on them to not lose any, showing that people will risk having their personal information shared with others to keep a streak alive.

As a user and their fellow Snapchatter reach a higher streak, it will seem stressful to not break it. In fact, there is a likely chance that streaks will cause unnecessary stress and anxiety as you struggle to keep the streak alive.  Many have been in situations where they don’t have WiFi or are out of the country but still manage to find a way to keep their streaks alive.

According to the article, “I Broke All Of My Snapchat Streaks And You Should Too,” Kathryn Kostovetsky states that after her mom called her snapstreaks “stupid,” she came to realize that her mom was right, thus causing her to break free “from the virtual handcuffs [her and her friends] had accidentally placed on each other,” or in other words, purposely lost all of her snapstreaks.

In addition, some people will associate the number of streaks and the highest number they have as a way to show popularity. According to the article, “Devastated Snapchatters talk about the heartbreak of losing a Snapstreak after hundreds of days,” a student named Luo stated, “A really long streak is a sense of pride or accomplishment. You can show someone your streaks, and it’s almost this sense of oh yeah, we’ve talked EVERYDAY.”

In the end, streaks are nice to have but a reminder needs to be sent out to teens that streaks are not the most important thing in the world. Don’t take streaks so seriously, especially when streaks could greatly affect your mental health. The decision is yours; are streaks worth your time?

Wearing a hair tie on your wrist can affect your health


If you looked around at people’s wrists, you would probably notice that most of them are wearing some kind of hair tie or rubber band. When you have a lot of hair, carrying around a hair tie is critical for those hot days or when you’re trying to work, so the most convenient and easy access place to keep it is right there on your wrist. Sure, we all know that it cuts off your circulation and leaves behind a red indent sunken into our wrist, but we guiltily keep it on anyway. But do you really know why it’s bad that your circulation is being cut off? Believe it or not that’s not the only reason you should keep the tight bands off your wrist.

When you cut off the blood flow to your hand it actually makes your heart pump harder because it’s trying to get blood all the way to the tip of your fingers. When you wear a tie on your wrist it puts pressure on your veins, so it’s harder for the blood to get through. Even though it’s just a little accessory on your wrist, it’s making your heart work harder all the time you are wearing it.

According to the website “Life Health and Well Being” your hair tie can pick up a lot of different germs during its journey through the day.  Amy Mulvaney gives examples of this, saying “you might have dropped it on the floor, held it in your mouth while your doing a ponytail, thrown it in your sweaty gym bag, that’s a lot of bacteria being picked up.” After picking up all that bacteria, it can enter through your skin after the hair tie chronically rubbing on your wrist. With the hair tie constantly rubbing your wrist, causing tiny cuts all over your skin to form, bacteria can enter your body through the skin. Bacteria living in your skin can penetrate to deeper layers where they do not belong.

A young girl named Audree Kopp was sent to the emergency room after a giant painful lump developed on her wrist from wearing her hair tie. “She was told by the doctors that her hair accessory had caused the infection as bacteria from the band had made its way into her pores and hair follicles,” Anna Pollitt wrote. Audree Kopp said, “Thank god I caught it in time, I could have got sepsis. Once it gets into your bloodstream, people have been known to go into a coma, your body shuts down, it could have been way worse.”

Whatever the reason, wearing a rubber band on your wrist has no positive effects as shown in the case of Audree Kopp. When you want to put your hair back maybe you can find another way to keep your hair ties handy without risking your health.

Nice is the new cool: Including everyone


Have you ever noticed those kids who are sitting alone and quietly eating at lunch?  They are always by themselves, but it’s normal right? We don’t think anything of it, but if you take the time to experience that, you start to see how lonely it feels. Try to put yourself in their place. How would you feel if you had to sit by yourself and eat lunch? It most likely wouldn’t be very fun.  It would mean the world to them if you could take the time to walk up and just start a conversation with them. No matter how embarrassing you think it might be, they will be happy that someone took the time to notice them and cared enough to make them feel more welcomed on campus.

According to U.S. News and World Report, “ A new study found almost half of Americans feel alone, and younger generations feel the most isolated.” Maybe you can understand what it feels like when you have nobody to turn to. Have you ever been in a place where you don’t know anyone, and you are made to awkwardly stand around all alone? Think about how it would make you feel in that situation if another person walked up to you and greeted you with a smile.  It would surely brighten your day to know that they saw you, noticed you were all alone and decided to go up and make a new friend make you feel better.

If you do feel lonely, you do not have to wait for someone else to approach you to start making new friends. There are some things you can do on your own to make you feel less alone. As Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “The only way to make friends is to be one.”

          Below are some tips to help you make new friends:

  1.   When you are meeting someone new, try to look for things you have in common.
  2. Don’t shut everyone out. If they are willing to get to know or help you, take advantage of it!
  3. Put on a friendly face. Show people that you are a nice person looking to make new friends.
  4. If you find a small group at lunch that you are interested in getting to know, there is no harm in walking up and asking if you can sit with them.
  5. Always show who you really are.  You attract people that are similar to yourself by doing this.
  6.  Remember that there are lots of different kinds of people out there. There is someone somewhere that is definitely willing to be your friend.

If you keep these things in mind, you are sure to have plenty of friends in no time. As long as you are willing to try, then someone else is too. If you ever see anyone that looks lonely, just try to get them involved, and always keep your arms open for new friends. “There is always room in the heart for one more friend” -unknown

(Gabriel Stanfield/Ethic News)

Top 5 performance cars on a budget


Lists like these are everywhere, but only a few of those cars are truly affordable budget beasts. Today, the budget is only $5000, and although these are not supercar killers for cheap, they can give you great power or handling to help you have a bit more fun than just driving a hand-me-down.

1.Acura Integra/RSX

DC5 Acura RSX Type-S (RICHARD BUNNER/ Ethic Photo)

 Best Years: 1994-2006

Usual Price: $1500-$5000

Engine: DOHC 4 cylinder VTEC

Body Style: Coupe

Drive: Front Wheel

With the Acura Integra and RSX being one of the most common tuner cars on the street, it’s not hard to go out and spot one. Their popularity is not just due to the courtesy of the incredible amounts of aftermarket support from brands such as Spoon and GReddy, but also because of their dual-overhead cam engines with VTEC technology and lightweight. They are a great way to get into a good handling coupe for a good price.


2.Mazda MX-5 Miata

NA Mazda MX-5 Miata (Photo By The Drive

Best years: 1989-2005

Usual Price: $800-$3000

Engine: DOHC 4 cylinder

Body Style: Roadster

Drive: Rear Wheel

The Mazda Miata is a legend for its perfect 50/50 Weight distribution, epic handling capabilities, and iconic pop-up headlights. It does not, by any means, make much power stock, but bolt on engine mods are aplenty and acceleration can be improved by some easy weight reduction.


  1. Literally Any Honda Civic

Fifth Generation Honda Civic Hatchback (Photo from Pinterest)

Best Years: All of them

Usual Price: $500- $5000

Engine: DOHC VTEC 4 cylinder/SOHC 4 cylinder

Body Style: Coupe/Hatchback/Sedan

Drive: Front Wheel

The Honda Civic is one of the most iconic cars for almost anything and everything automotive. It has a very capable FF platform for modifications and tuning and has the widest selection of aftermarket parts in the market. The most desired models are the higher trim levels, especially the Si model.


4.The Ford Mustang Foxbody

Fox Body Mustang 5.0 Notchback (Photo by The Drive

Best Years:1979-1993

Usual Price: $1500-$5000

Engine:2.6L V6/5L V8

Body Style: Coupe/Notchback

Drive: Rear Wheel

Considered an American automotive icon, the Ford Mustang is one of the most popular performance cars ever produced in the United States. They are a great platform for modification or just plain fun. The generation known as “The Foxbody” has a reputation for its low-revving five liter V8 and its availability of parts that can be found online and locally.


5.Ford Crown Victoria

Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor on Air Suspension (Photo From Slammed Sanctuary)

Best Years: 1998-2012

Usual Price: $800-$4500

Engine: 4.6L V8

Body Style: Sedan

Drive: Rear Wheel

The Crown Victoria used to be the car of choice for police and taxi drivers alike. Usually found on Craigslist or related sites as a retired police interceptor, these can be found at an affordable price. With its rugged body on frame design, the Crown Victoria can take almost anything and look good doing it. With a reliable three-speed automatic transmission and 4.6l V8, the Crown Vic has enough power for basically anything from daily commuting to powerslides (which should only be done on a track).



Remember, all racing should be done on a track with proper safety gear. All modifications should be performed by a professional.

Nice is the new cool: Smiles spark positivity


Most people are not perfect, or at least they think that. You’re either too tall or too short, you either struggle with math or you’re not a good athlete, or maybe you can’t seem to make friends easily. These self-doubts are all perfectly fine and completely normal. Although there is one thing that everyone can choose to do if they are willing: just be nice.

Below are some easy ways to be nice to the people around you.

  1. Give a smile to a random person as you pass them in the hallway
  2. Tell your teacher thank you when they hand you back a paper
  3. Say excuse me when you bump into someone in the hallway, even when its not your fault                             
  4. Hold the door open for the person behind you
  5. If someone is wearing something you think is nice looking, tell them!

These small things can change the campus little by little because you can hope the person you held the door open for will do the same for the person behind them. They might even get a thank you back. According to the website “Healthline,” “happiness may protect the heart by reducing blood pressure, a major risk factor for the heart.” When you do something good to someone else, not only do you make them feel good but you also make yourself feel even better.

If you have the option to make someone’s day even a little bit better why not try? What is there to lose? All that happens is people see you as a more caring and compassionate person, which is a great way to make friends. You can only gain and spread positivity. Abraham Lincoln once said, “When I do good I feel good, when I do bad I feel bad”

Nice spreads like a fire, smiles are contagious, and you can change your school with only using as many muscles as it takes to smile. According to the website “HowStuffWorks,” it takes 43 muscles to frown and 17 to smile, so why not choose to smile? Even if you only get four smiles back, you already spread the good feelings. If those kids get five people to smile back at them, there are now nine kids walking around with a smile on their face. They spread it and pretty soon the school is a happier and friendlier place. It all started with a smile.

Magazine ‘Bella Grace’ shares tips for improving one’s day


Whether you’re having a bad day or things just aren’t going your way, it’s the small things you notice throughout the day that make you happy. During bad times, it’s important to notice all the things that can make you smile or feel better. These things can be as simple as seeing a friend’s smile or the school serving your favorite breakfast.

The magazine “Bella Grace” is all about feeling good about yourself. It inspires readers to focus on simple kindness, and teaches them that the most important type of kindness is the one you direct towards yourself. This self kindness is all about loving your body image, finding ways to embrace your individuality, and looking for the little things in life that make you happy.

Below are three recommendations inspired by “Bella Grace” for focusing on self-kindness.

  1. Try activities that help turn your insecurities into strengths.

Try to remember Christopher Robin’s advice from Winnie the Pooh, “you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”  Sometimes the things you don’t like about yourself are the only ones that are visible to you. Once you don’t see them as flaws anymore, they tend to disappear, and you become more positive about the way you see yourself. Even better, you see them as a sign that you are beautiful and unique, and that’s certainly something to be proud of. If you walk around proud of who you are, people will only see how strong and confident you are.

“A flower does not think about competing to the flowers next to it. It just blooms.”

Zen Shin

  1. Look for the little things.

15 year old Angeline Carter writes in “Looking for the little things” that, “In high school so many of us act like we’re too cool for just about everything. We’re supposed to act like nothing impresses us. What a sad way to live that is!” To be happy we need to let ourselves see all the things that bring us joy. It could not matter less how “small” or “stupid” you think those things are. If you think that they can bring you any amount of joy, then enjoy them! To help herself see and appreciate all these things more, Carter started a journal to write them all down. You may start writing these things down and find moments later that you are on number 107 of small things that catch your eye during the day: reminders that no matter what’s happening those little things will always be there making you smile. In Carter’s notes she writes things like “number 3, when the crosswalk changes to go as soon as I walk up to it” and “perfectly cooked french fries.” The cool thing about such a concept is that different things bring different people joy. It could be “number 1, plopping on my bed after a long day, number 8, listening to rain pitter patter on my bedroom roof, number 79, when I walk into a public restroom and nobody’s in there.” You can either choose to ignore these, or acknowledge them and appreciate them while they are there.

  1. Bad days happen.

Now this doesn’t mean you don’t have bad days. Bad days are just part of life and can be tiring, sad, long, or just plain suck. However, it’s days like these when noticing those small things are the most important. They won’t make miracles happen or grant your wishes, and sometimes they can’t just turn your day around, but they will certainly try. Then at some point you’ll give in and say thank you to all those tiny joys in your life. So don’t let them go to waste, never stop searching for them, and treasure them forever. You never know what you’ll find.

“Everyday may not be good but there’s something good in every day. It’s just up to you to find it.”

– Unknown