How to Escape Summer Boredom

1. find a hobby. (examples: cooking, gardening)
2. join an activity/sport.
3. watch a Netflix series. and that doesn’t mean a whole season in a day. my favorites: bones, american horror story, dexter
4. get a job. doesn’t matter if it’s babysitting your neighbors once a week, moving lawns, or working at sonic. it gives you something to do and brings in some cash.
5. clean. no one likes to sound of that word. but cleaning has its perks. you get to live in a tidy home and your parents praise you. and who doesn’t love that?
6. challenge yourself. at the beginning of summer, give yourself a goal to complete by the end. this goal can be related to any of the suggestions above or something else.
xoxo squid

Apps You Cannot Live Without

The following are apps that I use frequently and recommend to every smart-phone user.
  • IMDb – gives celebrity biographies, awards, trivia, etc.; theatre show times and movie previews; and much, much more
What I like about it: it’s an easy way to creep on celebrities and to see what movies are coming out
  • Pandora – creates personalized radio stations
What I like about it: listening to only songs that you like
  • Whisper – allows you to tell a secret anonymously and receive “likes” from other users
What I like about it: revealing your secrets without ruining your reputation and/or people knowing who it is
  • Afterlight/InstaSize – creative and advanced editing apps (these two apps might not be free)
xoxo squid

Twitter or Facebook?

I remember when Facebook was a “big thing.” If you didn’t have a Facebook, you were considered unsocial. Every kid, even under 13, had one.
Then… parents wanted to supervise what their child was posting, liking, and friending. So they made an account, and eventually, everyone did. I’m a smart girl, and I definitely do not need my mother, let alone my 60-year-old grandmother liking and commenting on every post I made.
I created a Twitter (since that was the new “cool” thing) and started to use that. I liked it much better than Facebook, because it was simple and had less going on. In my opinion, Facebook is outdated, and Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat are becoming more popular.
To be honest, kids don’t want to see what Aunt Martha is baking or Cousin Cindy’s new haircut. They want to fit in with peers and not be someone who never has a phone until he/she is 17.
Just remember, post and tweet carefully. When you apply for a certain job, they Google search you. If your Twitter pops up, and every tweet has provocative language, they will definitely not hire you. It really does matter how you present yourself online.
Please vote below whether you like Twitter or Facebook better.
xoxo, squid

How OCD Affects My Life

I have had Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) since I was 5 years old. Most people don’t know what OCD actually is. The “obsessive” part is the thoughts; it feels like there’s this voice in your head controlling your every move. “Compulsive” is actions like having to repeatedly check every locked door before you go to bed.
I suffer from the obsessive part. I like things a certain way. When I would make my bed and someone laid on it or moved a pillow, I would have a panic attack and cry for hours. It would take me 90 minutes to get ready in the morning. I never felt comfortable talking in groups. So, I would avoid going out to lunch with extended family, etc.
Many underestimate how bad the obsessive thoughts are. I used to have to mirror my movements. If I spun in circles to my left 5 times, I would have to spin to my right 5 times. Also, I always had a “rope” behind me. If I walked around a coffee table, I had to walk around it the other way too.
After being bullied, my self-esteem dramatically declined. And as I got older, my expectations of myself and others grew and my tolerance for others’ stupidity decreased.
My parents took me to a psychologist, and I started to take medication. After two years of tweaking the meds, I have become a more flexible person. I have no more panic attacks and participate in family activities.
My OCD affects me the most socially; and now, I fear not being accepted by my peers. Truthfully, it has made me a recluse. That’s not something I am proud of but is super hard to change. Trust me, I have tried.
Thank you for reading my OCD experience. If you have any questions about how to deal with OCD or if you want to share your story with me, comment below.
xoxo, squid

How to Care for Your Fire-Bellied Toad

Fire-Bellied Toads are colorful creatures with bright bellies to scare away predators. They are usually three inches long and live up to five years. Although you shouldn’t hold them, they still make for a great pet if you ask me.
Just like you, FBTs need a hiding place from the huge giants staring at them through the glass terrarium. Do not use real wood in the habitat as this attracts gnats and mold. They also need a bowl of fresh water to swim in. To add some color in the habitat, plant foliage. The substrate should be mostly dirt with moss on top. I recommend Sphagnum moss. FBTs need a light bulb for most of the day. I usually just turn mine on in the daytime. You can find most of these things at your local pet store or at Lowe’s.
When the habitat starts to smell, it might be time to clean out the terrarium. Wearing latex gloves, move your FBT(s) to a Kritter Keeper (cheap from Walmart) with 1 or 2 cm of water. Remove and rinse all decorations in the habitat. Set aside the foliage. Put ALL substrate into a trash bag. After removing everything from the tank, rinse it. Do NOT use soap, Windex, etc. as this can be extremely harmful to your toads. Dry the empty tank with paper towels and start to add new substrate, foliage, and decorations. Fill the bowl up with clean water and put your FBTs back into their home.
I feed my toads live crickets. Yes, this sounds gross, but they are filled with protein and active. I have noticed that FBTs like to eat things that they can “catch” or “chase.” I buy about 20 small crickets at PetCo each week. Although crickets are not the only thing FBTs like. They will eat wax worms, mealworms, and most soft-shelled insects.

Always wear latex gloves while handling your toads, because the oil from your hands can harm them.
If you have any questions about FBTs, please comment.
xoxo, squid