winter break

This break felt unreasonably short however, I feel as though I made the most of it. Here are some pictures followed by a song that reminds me of that day with a brief description.

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This day Liz and I got pizza at Goodfellas in OTR and went to Urban Outfitters. Highly suggest Goodfellas and shopping on Main Street in OTR. There are some great shops like RAD and Native One, which are both owned by young people from Cincy which is cool.  I got some clout glasses at urban which didn’t last long bc someone broke them on New Years. Liz and I are in the car so much that we just made a collaborative Spotify playlist that we put on shuffle when we are together which is kind of genius so we both already know we like all the songs that are going to play. That day I remember the song Take Care by Drake coming on and we both got so excited because it’s such a good throwback banger.

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This day I remember being really cold but really pretty out because the sunset was gold. I was really happy this day. I remember thinking about the quote “I wish there was a way to know you’re in the good old days before you’ve actually left them.” I think I knew I was in them. 

Song from that day- FACE by Brockhampton

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These pictures are from the last day of break and it makes me sad to look at because I didn’t realize it was my last day until like halfway through that day. There is a frozen pond at clear creek that you can skate on which I thought was kinda scary but it looked cool to watch my friends play hockey. The sunset was really pretty too.

Song from that day – Gap in the Clouds by Yellow Days

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These pictures were on Christmas eve I think. My sister and I went to the Old School House and Old Milford and took some pictures until it started raining.

Song of that day – Just Like Heaven by The Cure (me and Mackenzie’s favorite song)

 

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This day I was with my friends and we decided to go to the canals because it was really nice out. It is pretty much a Graffiti Muesuem in Cincinnati. One of my friends I was with is a crazy good artist, currently at an art school in NYC. Just watching his make art is so entertaining, I’m so envious of how he can just throw up an amazing piece so effortlessly.

Song from that day –  Go by Louis the Child

link to music – https://open.spotify.com/user/kennedy.m.m/playlist/36cSbSRbbemBi3kczrJPbc

I don’t really feel like finding more pictures and there is a lot of things I didn’t get pictures of.  But overall, I had a really great break and I always love this time of year. Being able to see my sister and other friends that came home from college that I don’t get to see all the time anymore is nice but bittersweet.

When reflecting on the last couple years I can look back now and distinctly see why God put certain people and events in my life. I am extremely grateful for those people and experiences even though it may not have been the easiest in the moment. I will always have more to learn and discover about myself, and that is what makes me wake up in a good mood every day (for the most part). Discovering my passion for art in many forms has changed my life. It brings me joy and helps me comprehend and voice my emotions. Not only that but it has changed the trajectory of my plans for the future. My life goal is to provide a space for underprivileged kids to gather, create, and enjoy art in a safe environment.  I envision a large warehouse house with white walls ready to be cover in art. Somewhere for inner-city kids to get off the streets or poor environments and collaborate in a healthy form of self-expression. Also for the to have access to all kinds of art supplies: paint, pens, markers, laptops, instruments, anything they need to create their desires.  

 

 

 

 

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In 2017 it isn’t just the supermodels on runways and in magazines that girls aspire to be but our generation has also created the Instagram model. Are they considered real models or is it even a real job? I guess that’s up to you to decide. But what isn’t up for debate is the impact social media on teen girls body image.

The most well-known Instagram model is probably Alexis Ren racking up over 11 million followers. 95% of her pictures are in bathing suits or minimal clothing. Subconsciously, women constantly compare themselves to other women they see. Many of us including myself are on Instagram or other social media platforms at least once every day.  Women like Alexis Ren who dedicate their life and get paid to maintain a “perfect” Instagram and body are promoting unhealthy body standards for young girls everywhere.

Alexis Ren was active on social media for over 4 years promoting “health and fitness” before finally admitting that she had an eating disorder the entire time of her Instagram fame. Nothing against Ren and her struggles. I am not suggesting that her intent was to promote unhealthy body standards, she was probably a victim of comparison herself. Alexis Ren is just a prime example of the deceitfulness of this app. After bravely admitting to her eating disorder she opened up about the unhealthiness of her relationship with Jay Alvarez. Based on her off of her social media platforms you would assume they had the perfect relationship or were “couples goals”. It just goes to show that what you see on social media really isn’t reality.

It took me awhile to realizes this. It wasn’t till after struggling with an eating disorder my freshman year that I took the time to reflect and figure out what triggered my negative self-image. All through elementary school and junior high, I played sports and not once cared about what I ate. Nor did I ever consider my weight or even cared about what my body looked like.

I would do anything to feel that way again. However, towards the end of my 8th-grade year, around spring break time I was shopping for swimsuits on Triangls Instagram page. I think it was the first time I really questioned my body. I ordered the suits and when trying them on, and looking in the mirror I realized my body looked nothing like their slim and toned figures. I became extremely self-conscious. I felt the need to lose weight and somehow compare to these models.

After that time my desire to be skinny only got worse, and by the summer going into my freshman year, my family and friends started to notice and become concerned. I had lost 20 pounds from my already healthy weight (which I didn’t realize at that time).

I became obsessed with losing weight and counting calories to the point that I would never eat a full meal or completely skip meals. I felt excessive guilt after eating unhealthy foods and let it control my mood. I hated going to dinner with friends and having to make excuses why I wasn’t eating. “I ate before”, “I’m not hungry”, “I forgot money”.  My friends knew that something wasn’t right and luckily they and my family helped me recover and put some weight back on.

Anyways, this post was really not meant me for to use to tell my story and when I starting writing this I didn’t plan on it but it looks like I just did.

I believed in vulnerability and I believe in openness in order to grow.

Part of me feels a little bit of guilt writing towards this topic because I can’t say that I don’t still compare myself to others or feel insecure. However, my point and purpose is to expose and recognize the power of media. Writing this has helped remind me that the comparison to these social media stars is unrealistic because 1. It’s their job 2. Probably aren’t attaining in a healthy way 3. Or are just genetically blessed. Also because of social media’s constant praise for slim bodies, it’s hard for girls to understand that the shape of your body and your relativity to earth based on gravity(weight) doesn’t matter at all. It makes me happy to see brands incorporating models of all sizes but the fashion industry still has a long way to go.

If any boys have stuck with this all the way to this point you probably do not relate, maybe you do, I don’t know. Although I hope that you take from this is a new perspective. I believe a woman’s body is truly art but there’s so so so much more to that women than her body.

I think the men in our generation need to begin to affirm and recognize women’s intellect, depth, passion, creativity, wit, strength, and other mental beauty much much more.

Not only men to women, but women to women, men to men, need to focus on seeing and valuing more than what meets the eye. And that requires actually interacting with people at a deep, meaningful level which is sadly a trait our generation has devalued.

As my blog post tend to do, I have veered from the intended topic. As always, I hope you can take away something positive from this post and I also hope you have a great week! Thank you for taking the time to read this.

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It’s the bell before journalism and I remembered I need a blog post so… I don’t know why but when I thought about what to write I tried to think of what I did yesterday. I was with two of my friends who are back from college on break. I don’t know how we got on the topic but someone asked what the biggest land mammal was so then we started talking about elephants, which led to videos of zoo trips gone wrong and about ten minutes later we were watching a youtube video of a guy zip lining from his hair. So I thought I’d share those videos with you. I think everyone can relate to getting sucked into youtube or vine (back in the day) for about an hour until you realize how much time you’ve wasted.

Have a great break!

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x_cI9I39uV4

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NgX9pinHkhg

underated music

Steve Lacy’s Demo- Steve Lacy

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I just found out about Steve Lacy a few months ago through a friend. The first song I heard was C U Girl and loved it. Ryd and Dark Red are also really good. Additionally, I recently found out he is a member of Odd Future which would explain how he is featured on Tyler The Creator’s song, 911/ Mr. Lonely. Another fun fact is that this entire album was made on his phone which is crazy. I can see Steve Lacy producing some serious bangers in the future.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x-OzspEcQG8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E6BxAtc5cd0

Ctrl – SZA

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First off, the album art is dope. Ctrl, an abbreviation of Control was released in July of 2017. This is SZA’s first full-length album since 2014. She says this album was her first time trying to find her own individual sound and she absolutely killed it. You have probably heard her most popular track of the album, Love Galore ft. Travis Scott. Alternative R&B isn’t usually my go to music but I’ve been listening to this album for months non stop. I would definitely say it has a more girly vibe and discussing feminine topics but good music is good music. I was about to name my favorite tracks but I wrote down all 14 because, in my opinion, they are all great it just really depends on your mood. The fact that Ctrl hasn’t gotten much attention baffles me because I think it’s one of the best albums of the year and I’m dying to hear her new stuff.

 

BROCKHAMPTON & Kevin Abstract

Not an album but Brockhampton is a California-based American hip-hop collective formed in 2015. They released their first mixtape All-American Trash in 2016, their first album Saturation in June 2017, and their second album Saturation II in August 2017. Kevin Abstract is a member and co-founder of Brockhampton and I heard his solo stuff first and liked it so I looked him up and that is how discovered the collective. Kevin Abstract gives me Khalid/ Frank Ocean vibes. I found him a while ago and at that time his song “Empty” had about 400,000 listens. I showed him and the song to my sister because I thought he was really good and was shocked the song wasn’t popular yet.

Anyways she really liked it too and I checked today and the song has over 5 million plays. It’s so cool and one of my favorite things to discover and artist before they become really popular.

 

Favorites from Brockhampton- Gummy, Sweet, Gold, and Summer

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aIrHJQn4-NE

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JOubemQbIYg

 

Roy Blair

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Another member of Brockhampton collective, I think Roy Blair has a cool sound.

Favorites- Thunder & Cherry Tree

https://soundcloud.com/royblair

 

BAZZI

Thank you, Marin Valentine, for sending the song Mine by Bazzi and introducing me to the rest of his music. Deficiently describe his music as it as catchy and relatable.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nkhnni7xgJk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DJdwoDjDpGc

 

Winning Streak – Shaboozey

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I don’t know why this song isn’t popular yet.

 

Kweku Collins

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You’ve probably heard Lonely Lullabies and or Holla If You Hear Me, both really good tracks.

Other favorites- Lucky Ones, Stupid Rose, Low Rider, Ghost

https://soundcloud.com/kwekucollins

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Eca2WiTchk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tYEciCVNDG8&list=RD8Eca2WiTchk&index=2

 

Clairo

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She is very girly chill pop. I like her music a lot when I’m in the mood.

https://open.spotify.com/artist/3l0CmX0FuQjFxr8SK7Vqag

 

Harry Styles 

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Going to be honest, this album was released in May but I didn’t give it a fair chance until September. Nothing against Harry Styles but I guess I just assumed his music would have a similar sound to One Direction, in which I wasn’t that fond of. But to my surprise I loved his album, it kind of gave me Beatles vibes with the what he did with some of his background vocals and lyrics. Harry also has a cool and unique voice. My favorite tracks are From the Dining Room Table and Carolina.

Flower Boy- Tyler the Creator

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I wouldn’t really consider this album as underrated because from what I know it’s pretty popular, however, I do think Tyler the Creator himself is quite underrated, I mean the man does everything, he’s a rapper, record producer, music video director, fashion designer, has his own tv show, created a stop-motion film, co-founder of the collective Odd Future and creates all artwork for the group’s releases as well as designs the group’s clothing and other merchandise. Anyways I haven’t loved his past albums but you have to appreciate his creativity and attitude. Flower Boy is by far is the best album yet.

 

Other artist to watch

  • Daniel Ceasar
  • Joey Bada$$
  • Asaiah Ziv
  • Masego

“good people”

This past weekend I found myself driving up a mountain in Colorado. Out my left window is a moonlit lake and mountains, to my right an overlook of Fort Collins.

In retrospect, it’s crazy thinking about the events in life and how they guide to certain moments. If one small action or decision was removed you may have never been there at all.

Anyways, we park to go hike; it’s late and fairly dark. The first thing I notice is the sky. Unlike like anything I’ve experienced in Cincinnati, it is unbelievably clear allowing the stars to be completely visible. The temperature is cool but not cold, the air clear and refreshing. It was the best kind of view, one that a photo can’t quite capture. This sounds extremely cheesy but I don’t know how else to describe it, it honestly felt unreal to me.

Spontaneous ventures without the distraction of your phone and being surrounded by nature with of one of your best friends is definitely one of the best feelings in the world. As we sat on the edge of a rock facing towards the lake and mountains and I felt completely at peace. I credit this feeling to the landscape but also to those I was with.

That leads into my intent of this post. The people you surround yourself with are truly life-altering. I’d guess at some point in your life either your parents or somebody has told you, your friends shape your character and experiences whether you want them to or not. So I guess what I am trying to say is find “good people”. Ones that impact you in a way that helps you find your own individual identity. It’s hard, I know, it honestly might be who you least expect or the ones who have been with you all along. It really doesn’t matter who, just strive to have people that can mentally challenge and inspire you, therefore you are constantly learning and maturing. Not only that but someone that makes you feel special and comfortable with who you are.

Most importantly be someone’s “good people”. Everyone is searching for someone to value them for who they are, be that person. Encourage acceptance and practice unconditional love. Give people room to make their own choices without ridicule. Put down your phone and listen to them intently. Speak words out of love; recognize words that root in jealousy and avoid them.

On a more personal level, imagine a Mariemont that didn’t label you based on the division or notability of the college you chose to attend. A school where everyone can take a step back and admire the differences of the people around them. I think that would be a pretty cool place. It all relies on us as students; the things we choose to talk about at lunch, send on group chats and treat those around us. I try, although I am guilty of not always applying this to my life but seeing people who do motivate me to be a better friend, classmate, and daughter. Thank you for sticking with very scatter brain post… I’ve been on a plane for over 5 hours but I hope this impacts you in some positive way or another.

(These aren’t mine picture bc I didn’t have my phone but this was the spot, it was at night though.)

Let’s Get Weird

Humans are amazing.

The human brain is something I will never fully comprehend. How we behave and why we do things fascinates me.

I love talking and meeting people especially from outside of Mariemont. Yes, sometimes it can be uncomfortable but once you get over that it is really interesting, especially if they are an open person. I consider myself an open book. If you sit me down and talk to me I am most likely willing to tell you anything about me that you are curious to know. I think it is because I have a fairly high level of trust in people, which may serve as a character flaw, depending on the situation. However, I also feel like I don’t have much to hide. Not saying I haven’t made mistakes because I have, it’s more that I’m not one to shy away from admitting I am wrong and that is one thing I appreciate about myself.

You may think that sounds conceited if you are even still with me at this point, but I think it’s SO important to recognize and value the things you like about yourself.

We as humans are for sure our biggest critics; all it does for us is make life harder and who wants that. Your self-confidence is something that only you have power and control over and that’s amazing because it can ultimately change your life.

Life Hack: other people are great but don’t depend on their approval or praise for self-assurance, you don’t need it. You yourself they way you were made is different from everyone else and that is your power.

You don’t gain anything from self-loathing and negativity so why do it. I know that is definitely easier said than done and I also did not go into this post expecting to talk about self-confidence but it’s a HUGE subject in high school and it’s REALLY hard.

I’ve noticed in my own life that embracing yourself by finding a passion and speaking your mind brings so much more happiness than trying to fit a mold of the perfect Mariemont student.

What sparked this post was a quote I heard from Johnny Depp that caught my attention while watching one of his interviews. He says, “I am fascinated by people who are considered outsiders, weirdos, or freaks. I find them to be absolutely charming, beautiful, sweet, hypersensitive, hyper-intelligent individuals.” I think the beauty of “weird” people is that they are the ones who embrace individuality. They also aren’t limited to the constraints of societal norms.

Everyone is a little strange in their own way, when society says to dismiss it I say let’s get weird. 

Music as a Muse

I’m am going to use part of my first post to explain my blog title; Muse. A muse is defined as a person or personified force who is the source of inspiration for a creative artist. Therefore, I would like my blog to mainly be directed towards writing about my sources of inspiration and what interest me. Furthermore, Music is something that has been a part human culture and my own life since before I can remember.

Just like yourself and the world around you, music is constantly changing and evolving, that is what fascinates me.

Influence from other people has also shaped my music taste. The first person to introduce me to music itself was my dad. He showed me many great artist at a young age, many of which I still love and listen to today, such as; The Beatles, John Mayer, Bob Marley, The Who, U2, and Led Zeppelin.

I think the main aspect of great music is that it isn’t something you “grow out of”. In that way music parallels all forms of art. For example, all exceptional music, fashion, painting, filmography, photography, any type of creativity and design is timeless, meaning it can withstand decades while still holding value.

I probably make at least one playlist a week. As of right now my Spotify account contains about 80 playlists, one for almost every possible mood or event. I recently made one of some songs that I would label as timeless. It ended up mostly being songs from the 90s and older that I still appreciate. I found it hard to choose records from today that I can see holding sustainability. However, I did add a few which included artist such as, Frank Ocean, John Mayer, Kanye West, Asap Rocky, Kendrick Lamar, Tame Impala, Tyler the Creator, Lana Del Rey and others that I consider innovators of their time.   

https://open.spotify.com/user/kennedy.m.m/playlist/3OXQfc6l20TI7AjzExZ7TB