Climate Change

Cracked and crumbling, the earth once full of life and water lays barren and dry. Dust bunnies blow across the land without a single living thing in sight. Blue skies turn gray and smoky. Trees that once seemed to hold up the sky with their strong arms are now reduced to stumps. That is the future that lays ahead. 

Climate change has always been a big problem. Politicians ignore it as if they weren’t the ones who created it. Advocates protest, and we turn a blind eye. Brushing it off like it’s nothing, a mere annoyance. No one expects the earth to crumble away in their lifetime. We flourish in our big cities focusing only on what’s ahead of us, but not what’s above or below us. We move too fast to acknowledge problems that seem to loom ahead. Problems that are screaming to be solved. Problems that are bolded and put in italics for us to see. Problems that are shoved in our faces but we choose to ignore.

So what if the earth is dying? Why should I care? It won’t happen in my life so there’s no reason for me to do anything. These are all excuses. Excuses not to care nor act. Excuses to not do anything. We waste our lives away waiting for someone else to do it for us. We wait and wait and never yet to consider that everyone else may be waiting too. 

There must be something done soon, or there wouldn’t be an earth to worry about.

Books about climate change are available to check out from the Mission Viejo Library. They are also available to download for free from Libby.

The Life of Marie Curie

Born on November 7th, 1867, in Warsaw, Poland, Maria Sklodowska would go on to become a well-known scientist. Her father, Wladysaw Sklodowski, was also a scientist. Later, in 1891, she would move to Paris. This was when she changed her name to Marie and began working at a research laboratory, where she met her husband Pierre Curie in 1894. 

She would go on to marry her husband, Pierre Curie, in July of 1895. The couple would go on to work together, and eventually discovered the element Polonium. Marie Curie named their newly discovered element after the country she was from: Poland. They would also discover a second element, Radium, months later in 1898. Marie and Pierre Curie had two daughters, Irene (born in 1897) and Eve (born in 1904). In 1903, Marie and her husband won the Nobel Prize in Physics for their research about radiation.

On April 19, 1906, her husband Pierre was killed after a street accident. It is thought to be possible that part of the reason for his death was his and Marie’s repeated exposure to radium, a dangerous substance which weakened them both. Following this, however, Marie continued her work in science, and in 1911 won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. This time for her work about radioactivity. 

Eventually, Marie Curie would die on July 4, 1934 of aplastic anemia, due to her constant work with radiation. She was 66 years old at this time. Marie Curie was a great scientist, and the first woman to win a Nobel Prize.

– Peri A.

Several books about Marie Curie are available to check out from the Mission Viejo Library. It is also available to download for free from Libby.

When does it end

Have you ever told yourself this will be your last time? Only for it to be just the beginning. The beginning of your new addiction.

For some, it be hard to imagine. Others not so much. Addictions can and will come in all different forms, and shapes. Along with various problems. It’s something that will continue to straggle behind you throughout life. Unknowingly or knowingly. Acknowledging the issue is our first step to moving on. Then what. Action. Then you are cured! That’s what it looks like on the outside. Who knows what’s right! In your situation, the people you’re surrounded with may have no idea you’re even struggling to begin with! What does one do then? Some may suggest reaching out for support! Or going to therapy right? Because therapy can heal you. For some. My truth is it doesn’t. Well if therapy cured someone else then it’s bound to work for you as well too right? I wish. I wish I could fix the shattered pieces that seemed to puzzle me. I want to find what I’ve been searching for all these years. I do believe one thing. Finding some sort of purpose. While struggling against an addiction all on your own it will drain the life out of you. There’s no way to sugarcoat that.

It can and most likely will be scary to slowly stray away from your addiction. You know what I found fascinating is how people are addicted to the feeling of sadness. Some find comfort. It’s so much more than sadness. We find comfort in our addiction! That’s why we do what we do. It’s the last thing (or things) that we resort to that “fill” our emptiness. It’s like watering a seed. You only have one chance to help this seed grow. You can give it the love, support, and nutrition it needs. Or you can simply leave it alone and ignore the issues this seed faces throughout life. It comes to the point where you stop realizing about the things you do and the way you influence yourself is the problem. It’s like you can no longer see the reflection you wish to seek. Your mind is past your body. As if you’re no longer there. You are just sitting back and watching a life that was once yours.

Don’t be spiteful. I am not stating “addictions can’t be beaten”. There is one thing you must realize. You don’t always FULLY overcome your problems. Many of us just replace one with another.

What we do need to realize is that eventually our time will come.

10 Tips to End Your Writer’s Block For Good!

These tips have helped me get out of writer’s block and start writing again, and I hope they’ll do the same for you. If you need help, try following some of these suggestions:.

  1. Take breaks: Sometimes, the best way to overcome writer’s block is to step away from your writing and do something else entirely. Walk your dog, watch a movie, play with your cat, or read a book.
  2. Change your environment: If you feel stuck, try changing your writing environment. Move to a different room, go to a park or a coffee shop, or simply switch up your sitting position.
  3. Free-write: Set a timer for a specific time and write whatever comes to mind. This can help get your creative juices flowing and overcome any blockages.
  4. Brainstorm with a friend: Talking to someone about your writing can help generate new ideas and spark inspiration.
  5. Write a different part of your story: If you’re having trouble with one particular section, try writing another aspect of your novel or story.
  6. Use prompts: Try writing prompts to get your creative mind working again. These can be found online or in writing prompts books.
  7. Try a new genre or style: Experimenting with new forms of writing can help you get out of your comfort zone and find new inspiration.
  8. Keep a journal: Writing in a journal can help you reflect on your life and experiences, providing a wealth of material for your writing.
  9. Reading other authors’ work can help you get new ideas and improve your writing skills.
  10. Reward yourself: Lastly, it’s essential to recognize and reward yourself for making progress. Make sure you celebrate your accomplishments with a treat or a relaxing activity.

If you struggle with writer’s block, don’t worry – you’re not the only one. Writer’s block is a common problem that can occur at any time. However, the tips above should help you start writing again and maybe even wholly eliminate “writer’s block.”

Bella H.

Luck Around the World


Since St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated this month, I felt it appropriate to highlight what other countries’ cultures consider good luck.


On Japan’s national holiday, Kokomo-no hi (Children’s Day), colorful Koinobori (Japanese carp) are displayed on houses to guarantee their children good luck. The tradition began during the Edo Period when the Samurai class placed carp-shaped items outside their home.

In the form of an adorable white cat with a raised right paw, an owner of this statue will receive good luck. The Maneki neko is commonly found in touristy shops sold as gifts or in a business with its left paw raised to attract customers.


According to a superstition, spotting a white butterfly at the beginning of a new year will bring one good luck. Many Brazilians may even wait in a garden before the clock strikes twelve to ensure they will receive good fortunes for the new year.

The figa, an amulet shaped into an arm with a closed fist, also brings good luck to whoever wears it. Originating from ancient Etruscan Italy, the colonization of Brazil allowed the figa to become ingrained in Brazilian culture. The owner of the figa must receive the item as a gift and may not break or lose the charm to receive its good luck.


Dating back to the Ancient Greek times, Greeks would throw a pomegranate against their new home before moving in which is still practiced today on New Year’s Day. Participating in this tradition requires the luckiest member of the household to throw the fruit after the other members share good wishes in order to bring good fortune for the new year.

Kronia, an event also originating from Ancient Greece, consisted of cakes (vasilopita) and pies baked to honor the god Kronos. A gold coin would be hidden in each for a lucky person to find and receive good luck. Today, most do not have any monetary value and can be found as jewelry or gifts in shops.


Although over 90% of the population consider themselves Catholics, many still use the Bonom di bwa’s (Man of the Woods) service. The man of the woods provides an individual with advice concerning supernatural encounters and bestows one with a potion or amulet containing luck.

Another form of receiving good luck according to Seychelles culture is tattooing a dot on both one’s ankle and shoulder. Frequently fishing during dreams is also another sign of good fortune to come.


Contrary to many other nations’ view on black cats, the feline in Australia’s culture actually confers a theater good luck if present in the establishment. However, if the cat turns its back on an individual or is kicked, a terrible future awaits the person.

Ancient Aborigines, natives to Australia, relied heavily on the rain to grow a plentiful amount of crops, so of course they were constantly perturbed by a lack of rainfall. Believed to bring rain, Aborigines’ anxieties concerning a shortage of water were mitigated whenever frogs were present.


With over 40 volcanoes, volcanoes are crucial in Nicaraguan culture as observed on the country’s flag and a superstition. Dormant volcanoes indicate Nicaraguan citizens have not changed their behavior and therefore will continue their a good fortune streak. If however, a volcano erupts, the peoples’ behavior has altered and bad fortune has now fallen upon them.

To ring in the new year, some Nicaraguans participate in rituals such as hopping three times on the right foot or holding a drink in one’s right hand for a midnight toast to guarantee good luck. Others include sweeping out negative energy and diffusing the smell of cinnamon throughout one’s home.


75 Fulfillment Quotes on Life & Happiness (SPIRITUAL)

I used to be silly. I used to never have to worry much! I had what I needed. A Lot of the
time I didn’t even realize when things were wrong. I just didn’t care. I felt as light as a
feather. A young youthful child who simply didn’t have time for anyone else’s nonsense
or foolishness. I would talk to others not filled with much anxiety. My head wasn’t spinning. My brain wasn’t on the verge of exploding into a million pieces all at once. I was a kid.

Now I have more of a purpose. I have dreams and worries. I have people in my face telling me who I should or shouldn’t be. Sometimes it even feels like my destiny’s already chosen before I get the chance to speak.

I want to make my own decisions. Not letting others choose my path for
me. I want to feel happy and fulfilled. The feeling of winning the lottery. Or even just pure joy.
Having your work pay off. After the long nights of studying and sleeping. I want to be
successful. I’d do anything to make my parents proud of me. The feeling of being smart.
Being sure of yourself. Is something I’ll always strive for. Despite all the dreams and goals, I
hold myself up to. I don’t want to waste my life away behind a desk. I love learning new things.

But I want more in life. I want to be more than a person who goes to school just to go home and study. There’s so much more to my life than school. I don’t hate school. I hate killing time. Time is precious it’s something you can never get back no matter how much you beg or cry. It can run away from the tips of your fingers. It’s limited. And you never know when the clock will end. As much as I love making my parents proud. I have life. I have so much more to me.

I don’t wish to be stuck in a never-ending cycle of work, sleep, and eat repeatedly. I want to
live a life that’s meaningful. I want a real reason to be here. Even when things get rough. I want

a life that’s worth remembering. One that’s worth all the pain, stress, and troubles that come
along with living. I don’t want to be trapped in this box. One that most people see, to live the
rest of the entirety. I want to feel and be free. Not being held somewhere against my will. I don’t

want to be in an unhappy home. I wish to travel the seas! To discover missing parts and pieces of the world. I want to make a difference. I want to help others! I want to be someone, not just another body behind a desk. Not just another waste of space. Not just another hopeless girl. Not just some failure who wished but never did. I want to be. I will be someone who tried. Who does her best when it comes to everything and anything! No matter how impossible it may seem I can do it!

I want to be the sea against the storm. Staying in place no matter who or whatever comes in my way. Life has more of a purpose than sitting around waiting for one. Waiting for a miracle to fly out of the sky. Laying flat into your hands. When I leave earth I would like to know I left making a difference. I wish for better. Better for those who deserve it but never received it. Better for those who are struggling to fight for what they deserve. I am going to live a fulfilled life. One with not only purpose. But with meaning. I wish to be surrounded by those who matter to me. I will be the difference. I will do what I’ve always wanted to. I’ll stop caring what others think. I will live a carefree life. Filled with meaning. My special purpose. This time I won’t hide away like the sun in the rain. Yet I will soar above the clouds like a spaceship with no landing. Heading wherever the path takes me.

Another Way

I know Mental Health awareness is everywhere. But there are still people out there struggling. Fighting for their life. It hurts to know many people feel there isn’t any way out. Well I am here to tell you there is. And to never give up on yourself. I know its hard to keep going, but it will be worth it! In the end you’ll be thankful you stayed. I promise. Life eventually turns around. It will take time. I just wanted to remind you that there’s always another way.

I wrote this prose for those who feel there’s no way out. Its called: “Still Here”.

Still Here

        For those who may feel like life is meaningless. Or simply believe there is no point of living. I have a short story to share with you. To help remind myself and others on why we should keep going; I’m still here. I love many things. School is one of them. There I get a chance to be creative and free. Not many restrictions. I have lots of hope and dreams as I enter the building of what feels like a second home. Here I am away from the troubles and stress. Or some of it. But there was a time when life wasn’t getting anywhere. I felt nothing but hopeless. The world around and its people were drained of color. The sun was hidden away for decades. It was like someone powered out the lights and decided to not turn them back on. For the longest time. I was locked in this room. There was a window. Where the door should’ve been. I was alone. Barely standing on whatever I had left of me. I was chopped up and scattered into bits and pieces. I screamed relentlessly. Crying for help. Any help. Your help. His help. Nothing left my mouth. I could feel the tears rushing over me like a ton of waves crashing against the shore. I was underwater gasping for air. Screaming. Pleading for someone to notice. And they didn’t. Suddenly everything went black. No. The room shrank. So did its window. The walls continue to cave in. Please stop. All I need is for someone to help me. I don’t understand how I’ve gotten to this point. But I feel lost and unworthy. I can’t do this anymore. Nothing. The walls started to cave in once more. I kicked and screamed. The window wouldn’t open. It just didn’t crack. Go. Tell someone we need help. We must get out now before it’s too late. The window began to shrink. What’s wrong with you? You must want to die. Nothing but silence filled the empty room. What’s the point of staying? They didn’t want you in the first place. They can’t help you now. They can’t hear you. They can’t see you. The window now as small as a dot- opens. Just a crack. I swore I could hear the slightest whisper. I ran. Ran faster, Like that would help. I ran but I didn’t move. We’re still here. In the same place where we once began. Now screaming or so I thought. I begged for help. I could see myself. I could see people off in the void. Hey! I need help. Now would be great. I’m sorry to bother you but I can’t do this for much longer. They looked at me. Simply stared. Straight through me as if I wasn’t even there. Taking one look at me then moving on with the rest of their day. Not even a hi or hello. No acknowledgement that I was ever there. At that very moment the window slammed shut. No one there. But me. The window then shrank to nothing but to the point of disappearance. You were supposed to be there for me. I yelled repeatedly. Why? Why am I still here? My body sinking into a muddy puddle. The room with its walls smashing me into one another. I knew it. I told myself this was it. I had accepted the fact that if they didn’t care about me then why should I. I let myself spiral into whatever I’d become. Just as my head sank under. A door appeared. The faintest brown I’ve seen in years. In the corner of the four walls the door was creaked open. Everything around me stopped. I stopped sinking. I was able to get up. There was no snake wrapped around my neck. The sun was no longer hidden.

The French versus Spanish Debate

In the majority of schools, there are two languages offered: French and Spanish. In this essay, I will attempt to do an analysis of both languages and finally settle the debate of which language is better, talking about two categories: practicality and culture.

To start, Spanish seems to be the more practical choice in Southern California. However, this essay will not specifically focus on Southern California, and will focus on the United States as a whole. Mathematically speaking, more states border Canada than Mexico. Furthermore, more states border French-speaking Canada than Mexico. This would mean that French is more practical in these states, which there are more of. On top of that, French is more spoken than Spanish in the world, so taking French instead of Spanish would be useful in international working and travel. Because of this, French is more practical than Spanish, although it is debatable.

However, what is not debatable is how much better French culture is than Spanish. Sure, Spanish food is infinitely times better than French food (mmm pizza!), but French culture is more supreme in every other way. The French celebrate many great holidays, such as Poisson d’Avril, which I like because I get to put fish on people’s backs. They also have more interesting architecture and landmarks. Fun fact: Paris is the most visited city in the world, beating any Spanish or Mexican city by a landslide. France also has a very rich history too. France has fought in many wars. Although their win-to-loss ratio….. actually I won’t get into that. But thanks to their wars, they have brought a lot of history! Landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triumph have deep stories behind them that are very interesting.

Because of these two reasons, French may be the language to take in high school!!!

101 Essays That Will Change The Way You Think Book Review

101 Essays That Will Change The Way You Think, written by Brianna Wiest, is a very eye-opening read. There are a range of topics covered in Wiest’s book, but they all tie down to changing the reader’s perspective.  She talks about daily aspects, goals, view imposed on by society and broadens the readers view on such topics. A lot of the essays written in the book change the way one views themselves. I would like to think that reading this book has made me see who I am as a person, my actions, and life in general in a different way.  One of my favorite quotes from the book is, “Your habits create your mood, and your mood is a filter through which you experience your life”. There are many wise words like this, that really make you stop and rethink about your actions and use of your time. 

I would definitely recommend this book as it is one of my favorites, however since it is not your typical fiction book, not everyone might enjoy it as I did I would specifically recommend this book to people that enjoy reading books or quotes that will change your perspective on life. Since there are many essays in this book, rather than typical chapters, it doesn’t have to be read quickly. Each essay doesn’t specifically relate to the next, so if you’re worried about not having enough time to read a book, that shouldn’t be a worry. It is difficult to specifically explain the book, because there is no storyline or plot, however it is definitely worth the try!

  • Kaitlyn Y.

101 Essays That Will Change The Way You Think by Brianna Wiest is available to download as an audiobook for free from Libby

McCarthyism in Fahrenheit 451

McCarthyism is when people make false accusations about others. Joseph McCarthy was a United States senator who alleged communists had infiltrated the government in an effort to make the United States follow communism. In an effort to expose the spies, McCarthy searched for Americans who had relations with communism in the past, such as if they attended a rally about communism. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that they supported communism or wanted the United States to follow communism. These people were ultimately taken to court and were forced to answer McCarthy’s questions, a violation of the 5th amendment of the United States Constitution. Not only were they then placed in jail, but they were forced to name others who also had followed communism, even if they knew of nobody. In other words, the people were blacklisted. Blacklisting is when people who cannot be trusted are compiled into a list. Some famous people who were blacklisted were Lester Cole and Herbert Biberman. They were both part of the Hollywood Ten, a group of screenwriters who were accused of being communists and refused to testify regarding their involvement. This violated everyone’s rights and censored the people as they could not freely express their opinions on communism. In Fahrenheit 451, the government burns books and limits the amount of knowledge the people gain. The people are restricted in formulating their own opinions and are forced to listen to the government and their views. Bradbury criticizes and shows the consequences McCarthyism has in Fahrenheit 451. 

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury is available to checkout from the Mission Viejo Library. It is also available to download for free from Libby