Save Darfur

For those of you who haven’t heard of the mass atrocities/genocide that is going on in Africa and its surrounding areas, I want to share with you some amazing organizations who are helping to stop these horrible attacks.

Genocide is “the following actions committed with intent to destroy a national, ethnic, racial or religious group: Killing members of the group; Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part” (taken straight from the United To End Genocide website)

Currently, these are the areas that are being affected:

The genocide in Darfur is a direct result of their government seeking to gain control of land that the non-arab citizens of Darfur are living on and to also “cleanse” Sudan of this group of people. The government denies any involvement in the catastrophe. They also deny that they did not hire a group of murderers known as the “Janjaweed” or the “devils on horseback” to carry out this mission. The Janjaweed are heavily armed and run rampant through the villages. They mercilessly kill innocent men, women, and children and rape the women of the village. If the citizens are lucky, they can flee to a refugee camp where they are not guarenteed food or water due to the sheer number of individuals seeking help. Many die from starvation, lack of clean water, or diseases.

The following excerpt is taken straight from the United To End Genocide website explaining who they are and what they do:

We are United to End Genocide, the largest activist organization in America dedicated to preventing and ending genocide and mass atrocities worldwide. We are faith leaders, students, artists, investors and genocide survivors, and all those who believe we must fulfill the promise the world made following the Holocaust — “Never Again!”

United to End Genocide arose from the merger of the Save Darfur Coalition and the Genocide Intervention Network. Those organizations led the historic movement to demand an end to genocide in Darfur. For the first time, elected leaders took action to stop genocide — because millions of people took a stand and spoke out in one voice to say, “You must!”

We became United to End Genocide because the power of our shared voice and action is needed now more than ever. Too many people in Darfur and all of Sudan are still suffering at the hands of Omar al-Bashir, Sudan’s president and architect of the Darfur genocide. And too many people everywhere — in Libya, in Syria, in Cote d’Ivoire and Burma — need to know that the United States and other nations will act to stop atrocities and prevent genocide.

We believe the only way to prevent mass atrocities and to end genocide once and for all, is to build a large, powerful activist network — a sustainable movement — that will sound the alarm and demand action by our elected leaders to protect all who face these threats, anywhere in the world.


The following website is what started “United To End Genocide”. It is geared more towards the situation in Sudan, particularly in Darfur:

Both websites take one time and monthly donations if you wish to support this cause. They both also have different programs that you can be a part of.

The following photos were found on and by a simple Google search:

If you find it in your heart to support these amazing organizations, you can donate your time or money and spread the word of genocide.


List of Happy

This weekend was for…

Fulfilling my 16-year-old dream of seeing my favorite metal band in concert

Eating copious amounts of delicious cookies

Seeing incredible movies

Drinking too much coffee

Bessfraan time

Watching marathons

Finding the tallest building in Kansas. ((kinda disappointing if you ask me))

Making faces

And watching sunsets


  It was entirely, completely special. 

After Silence

After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.

-Aldous Huxley

One of the most beautiful, truthful quotes about music. Today I’ve racked my brain to come up with a list of songs that I would suggest to everyone. I tried to stick to ten but I ended up with twelve because I do what I want. Here they are in no particular order: ((let’s face it, I couldn’t choose my favorites out of this list if my life depended on it…))
Just click the title to view the music video.

1. I Was Made For Sunny Days- The Weepies

2.Civilian-Wye Oak

3. Anna Sun-Walk The Moon

4. Moon-Sia

5. Youth-Daughter

6. Cough Syrup-Young The Giant

7. Typical-Mutemath

8. I’ll Be Yours-Those Dancing Days

9. I’m God-Clams Casino

10. Fire In Your Eyes-Chase & Status

11. Ocean (live)-John Butler Trio

12. Give It All Back-Noah & The Whale

I promise with my whole heart you won’t be disappointed! Let me know what you think! (Or send me suggestions!)

Happy Listening!

Ariane’s First Letter

Yesterday I received my very first letter from Ariane. It was so sweet. She shared her favorite scripture from the bible and what her favorite foods were. She also said her favorite songs are “anything from Celine Dion”. Who wouldn’t smile at that? She also told me about her family members and her fat cat “Mateo”. She asked me a few questions about my life and told me what her favorite subjects were in school.

She even drew me a little picture!

I wrote her back and had so much to say. I told her that she was special to me and that I love our friendship. She and I were meant to be connected. I feel a sense of accomplishment and selflessness with Ariane. Something I’ve wanted to feel for so long. She said “Thank you for choosing me”, when really it should be me thanking her.


Emily Dickinson is by far my favorite poet. She captures her detailed thoughts on what the world looks like and what it ought to be, life and death, endings and beginnings, nature and eternity. Her most well-known poem starts with four lines and they’ve been running through my head for awhile now. . .

Hope is the thing with feathers, that perches in the soul. And sings the tune–without the words and never stops at all.

A few excerpts from other poems:

If certain, when this life was out, that your’s and mine should be, I’d toss it yonder like a rind and taste eternity.

If I can stop one heart from breaking, I shall not live in vain. If I can ease one life the aching, or cool one pain, or help one fainting robin unto his nest again, I shall not live in vain.


My Airman

This girl. My best friend for six years, my partner in clap-dancing, my Gladys, my workout partner (well, for a few days at least. . .), my airman, my hero. She’s humble, smart, selfless, and kind. She’s everything a best friend should be, and then some.

In the past six days I’ve been on the road for 25 hours, and not without good reason. In my most recent post I wrote about going to Warped Tour. I was home for 24 hours after that and then packed up again and headed for San Antonio. The occasion? Danielle’s BMT graduation. The ten hour drive was more than worth it. During the first part of the graduation (the coin ceremony) her parents, her friend Matt, my mom, and I stood by the bleachers waiting and waiting for them to finish. As soon as they said we could come forward to greet our airman, we ran. Literally. When her parents “tapped her out” the look on her face was priceless. In the six years I’ve known her I’ve never seen her cry. That day there were waterfalls and it was beautiful.

We spent every minute with her that we could and soaked it all in. And now I will take the time to explain to all of you just how awesome this gal’s parents are. Her mom is from England (which makes her twice as awesome with that accent), and her dad is just as great. I haven’t laughed that hard in months. It made for a good ab workout. We laughed until we almost cried, and then ate, and ate some more.

Did I mention the 3 lb. cinnamon roll that we destroyed?! Best. Breakfast. Ever. ((And no, we didn’t finish it all. But “Man vs. Food” did!))

She tried teaching me how to stand at attention, I couldn’t keep a straight face. She also tried to show me how to wear her hat appropriately and I couldn’t do that either. I guess some of us just aren’t cut out for the job.

Danielle, we’re all so proud of you. This is only the beginning but I know you’ll accomplish nothing but great things. Thank you for serving our country, Gladys. Congratulations, G. . .you made it! You’re the best bench on the block.



Warped Tour 2012

It was that time of year again, to pack summer clothes and sunscreen and head off to Bonner Springs for the biggest, most anticipated concert of the year…Warped Tour. This year marks my third time going and it’s only gotten better every year. The set list always varies year to year so you never know who to anticipate but they never fail to impress.

My boyfriend/best friend and I packed up and headed out on Sunday afternoon. The playlist on the way up? Walk The Moon. I am so completely and utterly obsessed and smitten and every other word I can’t think of right now with this band it’s ridiculous (Seriously, check them out). For the sake of being annoying, I sprinkled in The Killers, Flo. and the Machine, and Band of Horses so my boyfriend wouldn’t go crazy listening to the same songs six times.

We arrived at the hotel and had dinner with our friend Alan and Matt’s sister and dad. We laughed until our sides hurt and then some.”Is he a dot indian or a feather indian?”

The next morning we were up and ready. We downed our breakfast full of carbs and protein and headed off. In the past couple of years the weather during Warped Tour has always been brutal. I’m talking 110 degrees, brutal. This year was different. The high was 91 and the sky was overcast almost the entire time. Fantastic? YES.

Every year I anticipate Warped Tour more and more because to all of us enthusiasts, it’s home. We’re all gathered for the same reason, the music. No matter what you wear or how you look you are never judged. Despite the number of people there, we are a family. I have never felt so instantly connected to complete strangers, it’s like we all have an understanding of each other and from that comes respect. There’s nothing more powerful than standing in a crowd of people who are moving and singing to the same music in unison.

After nine hours of amazing music it was over. We all went to Ihop for the traditional “breakfast after a concert” meal. Almost everyone around us had come from Warped and we all cheered in unison about it.

The end is always bittersweet because you know you have to wait another full year to go back. So the count down begins…only 364 more days until next year!


Mayday Parade

Motionless In White

Of Mice & Men


We Are Warped

We’re getting by on borrowed time

Today is a day to be thankful.

For the soldiers near and far who stand up when everyone else is afraid to

For our freedom to live the life we choose to live

For beautiful explosions in the sky

For all things red, white, and blue

For an excuse to blow stuff up legally

And for different opinions to be ignored for just this day, to celebrate our unity.