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My friend was asking people to walk with her in this 2 mile walk-a-thon thingy to raise money for people in…Armenia? Romania? One of those places. Anywho, My other friend piped up and said, “Why don’t you walk a walk-a-thon and raise money for people in America?”

“Because the people in Armenia/Romania don’t have any food.”

“Neither do lots of people in America.”

“Well, I’ve helped poor people in America, too.”

“How?”

“I was with this volunteer thingy and we folded their laundry.”

“Ooh, yeah, because poor people can’t fold their own laundry.”

My friend had a good point: we can’t really help other countries until we can help ourselves. This girl’s going to do this walk-a-thon thing for people she doesn’t even know. Meanwhile, our government is supposed to shut down tomorrow, our car broke down again, and I’m trying to pay for college. No offense to people in Armenia/Romania; I understand you guys have problems, some worse than many problems we have in America. However, it’s hard to sit back and watch people’s money go towards a foreign country when I see so many poor people in my own hometown. I mean, I guess if you want to help raise money for kids in Africa that’s cool; good for you. But before you sign your check, take a drive through my neighborhood and think about where your money could be better spent.

That is all.

~Lauren

Planned Parenthood Needs A Plan

Recently Planned Parenthood lost their government funding. Oh dear, this has turned into a political debate. Hooray.

It's funny. I hate politics. Really. I feel that the world would be a better, much nicer place without them. And yet I keep bringing them up. Not for the sake of politics, but because there always seems to be an issue that comes up every now and then that I feel must be addressed. I feel that maybe I should form an opinion on a subject sometimes, even though I try to not become too opinionated about things. I'm pretty opinionated about this.

A lot of right-winged conservatives are going to tell you that it's a good thing that, due to Planned Parenthood's funding cuts, taxpayers are "no longer paying for other people's abortions." Hate to break it to ya, but we never were. The government cannot legally use taxpayer money to fund abortions except in cases of rape, incest, or if the mother's health is at stake. Planned Parenthood does not use any of its government funding towards abortions at ALL (which, by the way, only account for less than 5% of the services they offer).

According to their annual report from 2007, abortions counted for 3% of the services they provided that year. Among that, 36% of the services they offered were towards PREVENTING pregnancies, which prevented millions of unwanted pregnancies, which prevented many abortions. Planned Parenthood doesn't really want you to get an abortion. An abortion is a last resort. They give you all the options first.

The report is on page 9: http://www.plannedparenthood.org/files/AR08_vFinal.pdf

So what was the funding paying for? Oh, well let's see: breast exams, gyno exams, PAP smears, HIV testing, and birth control, many of which are extremely expensive or aren't covered by insurance. Planned Parenthood uses its funding to educate the public about sexual health and preventing unwanted pregnancies. They are really important in this generation, more important than people realize. I don't think people will realize how important they are until a long time from now, when STDs are growing rapidly because no one can afford to get tested.

Republicans feel that they are doing the world a favor by trying to get rid of an organization that offers abortions, which, as we all know, are "bad", right? Sure, they're bad. Let's say that all abortions are "bad." Let's say that it's "bad" for a 13-year-old girl to get an abortion after she was raped by her father/uncle/brother/whoever.

That's besides the point. Planned Parenthood isn't some evil organization encouraging you to get an abortion, laughing an evil laugh every time a woman walks in the door. They are a place you can go when you feel you've run out of options. They are a place you can privately get tested and make sure that your health is in check. A place you can test for any STDs before having sex with your partner. A place you can afford to get routine breast exams. And they lost their funding because abortions are "bad."

I guess I don't understand why people are willing to pay for luxuries, but not be taxed for things that are necessities. I guess if you can afford to pay for life's little emergencies then it's not an important issue to you.

I encourage you to understand how critical this issue is. I think the main problem is that people don't feel that this affects us, while in reality it affects everyone. It's kind of a big deal.

I support Planned Parenthood 100%. If that makes me a liberal, sue me. However, I assure you that I am not a liberal or a conservative. I'm just someone who knows the difference between what is right and what is wrong. 

~Lauren

I'm On Facebook...Again!

A new year and a new idea...why don't I have a like page on Facebook? I mean I have approximately 400-something friends on Facebook but only 12 followers on Twitter. It would only be logical to post more posts there instead of just saying, "Hey guys, I wrote another post, please read it" to my 12 followers who probably don't even get on Twitter anymore. But seriously, why DON'T I have a like page? Maybe because it may seem a little too self-promoting (Hey look at me, I have a blog, like my page, blah blah blah!)? Maybe because I will probably only have 10 likes at the most (including myself) but hey...that's 10 more people who know about my blog!

This will probably turn into a silly project that I won't be able to keep up with, but I'm pretty optimistic about it. I can already tell you who will like this fan page:

1) Mom and Dad (they count as one though since they're kind of a given)
2) Cory
3) Karl
4) Hosay
5) Dallis
6) My grandma
7) Jasper
8) Jenna
9) ...um?
10) Maybe I won't have 10 right off the bat.

This will give me some incentive to write more often, as I haven't written a new blog post in awhile (Christmas vaycay has made me very lazy).

I know my blog isn't THAT special, but I think it's at least worth a quick glance. So c'mon...like my page...I know you wanna :D
 

~Lauren


The Best Ones


So, instead of doing Government homework I'm venting.

I've been called condescending, and I probably am every now and then. But I gotta say, I loathe people who think they are better than everyone because they thought of something witty or clever to say about a topic they feel they are a connoisseur of. And I hate to rant publicly about one thing over and over, but I must so I don't hurt myself internally.

To all condescending, arrogant, haughty, know-it-all, preppy, patronizing, snooty, close-minded, egotistical jerks who roam the earth:

No one cares. No one laughs at your remarks. No one thinks you look hot. No one cares what your favorite college is, your opinion of Barack Obama, or that you think Pepsi is better than Coke. Because one, it isn't. Coke is better and always will be. Two, all of us down here who aren't sitting on our high horses have more important things to worry ourselves with, like paying for college and getting out of the small towns we live in. Basically, we wish you would shut up and grow up.

Now, to everyone else. The quiet, smart ones. The shy, beautiful ones. The modest, talented ones. The sweet, friendly ones. The quirky ones. The dreamers. The singers. The lovers. The geeky ones. The crazy ones. The ones who don't quite fit the mold. The ones who can turn your bad day into a good one with just a few words. The best ones:

Keep doing what you're doing. You're a rareity and a pleasure to have here on Earth. We need more people like you in the world, so if you don't mind, please find other people like you, make babies, and create more people like you. Most importantly, don't change for anyone.

Thanks.

~Lauren


Scholarships Are Ships For Scholars

There are so many reasons I'm excited right now...SO many.

So Friday I attended Crusader Preview Weekend at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, aka, the college I've already been accepted to. It's a smart person school, and, of course, I was accepted almost immediately *smug look*. Ahh I'm full of it. Check them out if you'd like, I strongly advise it: http://www.umhb.edu/

Being at UMHB helped me realize several things. For one thing, I will be in college in less than a year *gasp*. Secondly, my life is about to BEGIN. All the years of being in elementary school up through high school, all the years spent in a small town with the impression that maybe I'm just never going to get out of here, and the countless moments of wishing I was someone else adding up over the years are finally behind me. The minute my feet touched campus I realized that I can finally pursue my passion; I can do what I want to do and not worry about what anyone else says. I know that I should never have been worried in the first place, and I'm not, but I know that I can be myself and not be criticized/judged/get weird looks, regardless of whether or not I'm worried about it. That feeling is amazing; I sincerely hope you feel that way when you go to college.

Cheesy epiphany of the day: I know now why scholarships, internships, all those things end with "ship". With those things, you can sail off into a new and bright future. However, if you miss out, then that means, "That ship has sailed." Get it? Haha! Ehhhh...

Oh yeah, so in 8 days the best thing ever is going to happen, better than Disney World! I'm gonna be 18! And I already know what my presents are going to be (unless, of course, you would like to surprise me with something...). I know my parents are getting me an awesome new guitar, and I know Cory is getting me a movie (although I wasn't supposed to know that). I still don't know which movie though. He blurted it out yesterday though, was pretty funny, you had to be there. Yesterday was his birthday and I had made him some delicious brownies because he loves brownies and no one had made him any in a long time. Then we were driving to his house and our conversation went something like this:

Me: Did you have a good birthday?

Cory: Yeah, my mom got me a really cool gift. I'll show you once we get to the house (it was a laptop). She also said she got me a movie, but I haven't gotten it yet.

Me: Why not?

Cory: She ordered it in the mail. It'll probably get here the same time your movie gets here...I mean stuff...dammit!

Me: *Laughing hysterically*

Cory, you didn't ruin the surprise. I think you just made it better.

~Lauren


Tiaras Are Plastic, Titles Are Golden

Wow it's been a long time since I last posted an entry. An eternity really. Have I really been THAT busy? So busy that I don't have time to write a couple of paragraphs and tell you how I've been? Yes...I've been THAT busy.

October was (haha) interesting. October usually is, but this one in particular was just chock-full of adventure. I gotta say though, I'm a little adventured out. I sincerely hope that this month will be a little slower. It would be nice for my schedule to have a little breathing room.

What was so adventurous? It might possibly be the excitement and drama, the tears and devotion, and the dedication of preparing for a pageant. Yes, a pageant. Go ahead, laugh. I can wait.

You know, I was in a pageant when I was 3. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing or where I was or why I was on a stage in front of tons of people with cameras. The only thing I remember from that day was looking at the floor for the post-it I was supposed to stand on and then later dropping my crown after I won.

Anywho, I was in this pageant, which was a big to-do. I know that I'm not pageant material; I wear jeans and t-shirts every day, I am NOT skinny, nor do I know how to do that stupid princess wave (elbow elbow, wrist wrist? Wut?). However, I am poor and I was not about to pass on a scholarship opportunity. Plus, it's supposed to be fun right? Right? 

Right...

So I prepared for this pageant; I had already lost 15 pounds and wasn't looking as awful as I normally do. I didn't mess up on my walking, my practice answers for the practice impromptu questions were great, I wasn't even that nervous anymore. I was just praying I wouldn't fall in my heels because, well, that would really stink. There were a few times I wondered if I had a chance; I was confident in my talent, but I knew I couldn't simply rely on that. "I'm not Barbie" would replay in my head and make me feel like utter crapola. Then I thought, "Hey...I'm NOT Barbie! I'm LAUREN!" I got my confidence back soon after that.

Then the night of the pageant arrives. Wuuh. I walk out onto the stage, feeling pretty excited actually, realizing that this is totally for fun. So, I had fun. I sang my heart out, I strutted my stuff, I was awesome basically. After our final walk, I feel as if I have already won. Then they announced the winners of the congeniality, photogenic, and talent portions (I got talent!). Then, everyone held their breaths...

...and I got first runner-up.

The winner was blonder than me, thinner than me, and at times I feel, even prettier than me.

But that's how it goes, folks.

But you know what? I wouldn't have it any other way.

I got home that night and ate my first slice of cake in three months with my parents, my brother, and Cory. I was, am, naturally disappointed I didn't win. However, after getting to hang out afterwards with my family, after Cory kept telling me endlessly how beautiful I looked, and after I was laughing so hard at my dad and my brother throwing socks at each other, I felt like I had won. Maybe not the pageant, but perhaps I had won another title, one even greater than Peanut Queen. Yes, Peanut Queen. Go ahead and laugh again.

I went to school the following Monday with a whole new level of respectability. I had so many people tell me what a great job I did and that I looked and sounded great. Even people whom I thought detested me told me I did really great. Some were convinced that I was the winner, which later added to my "I FEEL like a winner" -ness. But I'm not bitter, nor am I unhappy with the outcome, because the outcome doesn't mean that I will always be second place throughout my life. To me, this outcome leaves room for me to have plenty of opportunities to get first place.

Now I realize that I do in fact have a greater title than Peanut Queen: Lauren Jones. It is this title I will always be the holder of (well, until I get married). It is my title, it is the crown I wear every day, and it is the greatest thing I can ever accomplish. YOUR title will be the greatest thing you will ever accomplish, so by God, be awesome at it! :D

It is this "eureka" moment I just had that I would like to share with you.

I think I want a sandwich now.

~Lauren


The Ant Colony vs. The Magnifying Glass

Well, here's another spontaneous blog post I reckon.

High school is interesting I'd say. I don't enjoy it, but I don't completely detest it either. I just find it interesting. Based on my personal experience, it's like watching an ant colony. You observe it from a distance knowing that you can't become apart of the colony. Even if you try to join you get stung and bitten.

Still, I've got the magnifying glass.

I was Facebooking one day instead of doing homework like I always do (procrastinators UNITE.......maybe tomorrow), when this sophomore messaged me. We started talking about school, and apparently he hates it. Gasp.

I always knew I wasn't the only person in my predicament at my school, but I was unaware of who the others were. The ones like me. So far I've found one, maybe two. But it helps me wake up and go to school every morning knowing I'm not the only one who dreads seeing the faces of the ignorant become more and more ignorant.

Well, I know the best thing I can do is suck it up. I have less than a year left before I can be granted freedom. It's scary. Very. However, I am ready to greet it with open arms because I have been waiting for it my whole life. In my spare time I can help out those who feel they are having a tougher time than I am. They have a much longer wait ahead of them.

~Lauren
 


 


SURPRISE! It's a BIRTHDAY BLOG! :D

Oh hey Tom. Didn't think you would have a blog post about you, did you?

Well, it's your birthday. Your 18th birthday. Lord help us.

I would have sent you something in the mail but you didn't want me to spend any money. Don't worry, this didn't cost me a dime. Although really I can mail you something. It's not too late, you know. I could always stalk The Killers and steal Brandon Flowers' used tissue and mail it to you or something. Nah? Ok then :)

So I'm not sure how I should go about writing a blog post for you. What should I say? Where to begin? And will it be as awesome as last year's present? I think not, considering last year's present was pretty awesome. Still, it's worth a try, so here we go!

As you know, I met you on a ridiculous website called icanhascheezburger.com. It started with me sending a comment that said something along the lines of "London rocks!", and soon afterwards we were cheezfrends. Pals. Buds. Mates. Two peas in a pod. Two...alright you get the point.

Redzy, you've been such a great friend, and I don't think there's anybody in the UK as cool as you. I would say the world, but that would exclude me, and I'm pretty dang awesome. It has truly been a pleasure knowing you and I'm thankful to have a friend as freaking awesome as you. I wish I could be there to commemorate this fine day. Unfortunately there's this big-ass ocean in the way. Pooh. Basically, I want to be there and party hard with ya. Not only because it's your birthday but also because I rarely get to party hard. Next year my friend...next year...maybe? Who knows? :)

And, as a special tribute, I will be wearing this on your birthday:



Hmm...where have I seen this before?...



Oh yeah. Did I nail it or what? :P

Love you Tom, have a wonderful day.

CFFL = Cheezfrends For Life,

~Lauren

 


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Smarty McSmartsmart Learns About Summer

I love summer, but not because of the sunshine, vacations, not having to go to school, etc. Well...yeah I do...what am I talking about? Oh, they're not the main reason I love summer. Although, not having to go to school is pretty high on that list...

Summer is the season of change.

(I am now rudely interrupted by Smarty McSmartsmart) "Spring is actually the season of change. Winter turning into spring, flowers bloom, things come to life and are reborn. It's like that poem by this poet I learned about in my Advanced English class..."

And we will now turn the volume dial to the left on Smarty.

Summer is the season of change. And I don't mean that this is when all the pretty flowers bloom and poets write these deep, philosophical words that no one understands. Summer changes people.

You know that kid who always has a smart-ass comment to say after you say something? Summer will fix that. You know that girl who looks like a gawky stick with braces? Summer will fix that. If you're absent long enough, you'll see what time can do when you return.

I've always noticed that. Never really thought about it though.

I thought about it a lot yesterday, since yesterday was the last time I got to come back to school from summer break and see how people had changed. Yesterday was my last first day of school. That's my mom's cue to start bawling.

Sorry I can't be sad folks, but I'm too excited to only have one year left!

Anywho, things seem to be looking up for once. School has been cool for once, no stress. I feel shmexy buying clothes for once, and I'm happy. Cool.

Thanks for reading, whoever you are.

~Lauren


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In Case of Boredom...Scroll Down

Right now I'm just writing for the sake of boredom. Sometimes it's the best time to write.

What's happening now:
- School started (Senior 2011).
- Math remains my mortal enemy.
- I've kept 10 pounds off of me for about a month. Hoping to keep more off.
- Job hunting might be successful.
- I'm more optimistic than usual.

So if I have any readers, I'm hoping you could do something for me. I want to have a survey-like thingy. Not like one with a bajillion questions. In fact it will only be one question. I want to know what you would like to be doing right now while you're reading this. I want to know where you'd want to be, who you'd want to be with, and why.

Hm, guess that's three questions. Oh well.

Readysetgo!

~Lauren

 


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