Seventh Grade Reflection

When I first arrived in August, I expected a boisterous, crowded school, with kids who are physically present and mentally absent. I had recited numerous times a script I had written in case of any social interaction. But later in the school year, I realized how wrong I was about the school. By October, my time at school had changed dramatically. I had met amazing friends and had some awesome teachers. I didn’t feel like the new kid anymore. Eventually, the school didn’t seem quite so big, and I didn’t feel that small anymore.

I learned some valuable life lessons like to never make hasty decisions when judging things, to always pursue opportunities when presented, and to always go the extra mile when doing something for school. If I could do something different, I would have made an effort to be less shy on the first day of school, and to have put myself out there, and to have accepted the situation as  it was. My advice to next year`s seventh graders would be to find a way to get themselves academically motivated, learn to be independent, and to get Mrs. Schoch for English class no matter what.

What is a TRUE Leader?

What is a TRUE Leader?
There are many leaders in the world. A leader can be someone who rules a nation, or is the head of an army. But just because they have a top position in their society, does that make them a true leader?
I believe that a TRUE leader is someone who cares more about the success of their people or venture than the success of themselves. No person will make a great leader who wants to do it all himself or gets all the credit for doing it. An effective leader has the resolve to see every task through to the end.
A real leader possesses the quality to take charge of a situation, and to lead their followers on a path to glory. A true leader has the nerve and commitment to be ready for disputes and arguments, and has to have never ending wisdom.  Age or position in society doesn’t matter when it comes to being a leader. Anyone can be a true leader if they have the heart and strength of mind.

My Favorite Poem

The Road Not Taken

By Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth; 

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day! 
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference. 

I think that the major theme in this poem is about making choices. The speaker in the poem is trekking through the woods one day, when he comes to a fork in the road. One path looks like it is the most safest and easiest route to travel by, whilst the other looks less convenient and problematic. The traveler chooses the less used trail, and continues on his journey. By taking this path, he states, “And that has made all the difference.”  If the person had taken the easier path, they wouldn`t have had any problems, but by choosing the more difficult route, they are inviting unforeseen adventure, which makes them mentally stronger. Challenges attract humans. We are built to want to overcome obstacles, and we strive for the opportunity to conquer these obstacles that thwart us. We are naturally programmed and hungry for the feeling of satisfaction and self-fulfillment, that comes with overcoming obstacles. This is why this is my favorite poem.

Favorite Childhood Object

My Old Swim Fins (photo taken by me)

My Old Swim Fins
(photo taken by me)

When I was little, I just couldn’t do without a pair of fins. I remember every night I looked through the Sport Chalet catalog, longing to have a pair as my own. I ached for the day when I could finally keep up with my parents and relatives on their frequent snorkeling excursions. The fins were a sleek black color, with blue running along the sides and middle. While I had them, they accompanied me on many adventures like swimming in the kelp forests, feeding the resident fish frozen peas, and seeing the newly hatched horn shark pups. They gave me endless joy from the time I was five and a half to 11 years old. The rich, black color has now faded, and they have to be held together by metal clips because they have been used and loved so much. Every time I pass the shelf where they stand, I reminisce of how much they meant to me.

Fun Things to do in Austin Texas

When I heard I was moving to Austin,Texas last summer from Southern California, I had thought I was moving to a boring, tedious city, with nothing to do. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Austin, Texas is definitely one of the most interesting and fun places I have ever been to.

One of the things that I enjoy is kayaking on the many lakes (that look exactly like rivers) around Austin. Thankfully we could take our sea kayaks with us when we moved to Texas. Even though it is different than riding open ocean waves, it is still really fun. There are tons of places you can rent kayaks and stand up paddle boards along the lakes.

Another thing to do is to is to go look at the 1.5 million bats that fly out from under the Congress bridge. The best time (and probably only time) is to go see it happening in summer, around 8:00 at night. Whether you are standing on the bridge or out in a boat,you will not be disappointed at this spectacular sight.

Since moving to Texas 8 months ago, I have learned so much, and have seen so many new and exciting things. This move has taught me to not judge places so easily.

Why Homework Is TOTALLY Annoying


First off before you read this just note that I am not off searching for trouble with every teacher in a 50 mile radius. I don`t believe in kids getting homework, but that doesn`t mean I`m the type of kid who blows it off every time something is assigned. I am not out to start a homework revolution, I just believe in the more important things in life.

The sun was shining and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. I happily looked at the tide charts and saw that the surf was perfect. Running to the garage to grab my skimboard, I asked my mom if she could give me a ride to the beach. When she told me I had to finish homework, I sadly put my skimboard back down. Dragging my feet, I walked back to my desk. Homework is annoying!

First off, homework makes learning NOT fun. After a long, never ending day of school, kids have even MORE work to do after school. With an average load of two to three hours of homework, kids turn into stress cases. Some grueling nights, I find myself staying up until 12:00 at night studying, AND working on projects. With each more boulder of work piled up even higher on my mountain of homework, I find myself looking less forward to the next day of school. Homework is like a dark storm cloud, hovering ominously over each kid’s head.

Secondly, homework keeps you from being a kid. The most important thing about childhood is having fun, not about having to worry about insurance, bills, and things like that. That’s an adults job. Kids should worry that their time as being carefree is fleeting fast, and they should NOT have to worry about that ginormous homework assignment due tomorrow. For instance, even as I am writing this, my family is having a great time watching the Olympics, but I am stuck doing my usual two and a half hours of homework. Homework is a drain; it sucks everything what matters most to you, like family time. And family is forever.

In conclusion,homework is an annoying, bag of stress just waiting to be opened. It makes learning not fun, and it takes your childhood away from you, and so many more reasons I could continue to rant on about. Homework is a threat to a kid’s whole life structure. Enjoy life and the short time you have of being carefree, because you will never know when the day will come when you are grown up. Kids who are in school just visit life sometimes, and then they have to stop to do homework or go to sleep early or get to school on time. You only live once, so enjoy life.


How to Speak Horse Post 2: What His Head Carriage Says

The horse`s head position and other movements can tell you a lot of  what is mood is and what he is thinking about.

  • Head Lowered: A lowered head means that this horse is relaxed and content with himself. Words of Advice: If his head is lowered in a stall or pasture this probably means that he is sleeping, so make sure that you make some noise when you are approaching him.


  • Head Held High: This horse is focused on something in the distance- he is most likely deciding wether to flee, investigate, or ignore it. Words of Advice: I this horse is being ridden by you, you must realize that he is not paying attention to you, and might spook or bolt. Make some noise to regain his attention. Another Thing to Look For: Also if you are riding him, this might mean he is in pain especially if he is pinning his ears or if he hollows his back. Carefully examine his tack for things that could hurt him, and if he still persists, call the vet immediately for back pain.


  • Snaking: Lowering his head, and waving it from side to side is an aggressive  act called snaking. If you see your horse doing this, be cautious. You need to find the solution to the problem, either by refocusing his attention, moving him out of the area, or just getting away from him.

How to Speak Horse Post 1: The Ears

Because people rely on verbal communication, people often focus on a horse`s vocalization to try to figure out what he is saying. But what most people don`t know is that horses mostly speak through body language, and this post is going to tell you exactly what a horse is saying (through his ears), just by looking at it.

The first nonverbal communication are the horses ears. Here are some different ear movements that will tell you exactly what he is thinking.

  • Ears are Forward: This horse is alert, paying attention, or is interested in what is going on in front of him.
  • Ears are Pinned Back: When his ears are pinned back close to his neck, this usually means that this horse is angry and about to bite and kick. Words of Advice: If you are riding, turn your horse in a tight circle in case he might try to buck. If you are riding in a group, this might just means that he would like to be leading the ride. If possible, lead him up to the front of the group.
  • Ears Turned Out to the Side: This horse is asleep or relaxed, and he might not be aware of what is going on around him. Words of Advice: Don`t march up and pat him for he might be startled and strike out. Instead, make some noise so that he can hear you approaching.
  • Turned Back (not pinned): If you horse`s ears are pointed back, this means that he is listening on something behind him-he may be deciding wether to run away and check out the sound.
  • Rapiddly Swiveling: Ears that are swiveling means that this horse is in a peak of anxiety or alertness. He may be trying to locate the source of a frightening sound or smell.




What is Normal? (in horses)

Some people may think that if a horse looks fine and healthy, they think that the horse is sound. But there`s a lot more to it than that, and by the end of this post you`ll be able to see what normal really is.

The resting heart rate is however many heart beats a resting horse make in one minute. A normal adult horse makes about 28-44 beats per minute. The heart rate of a resting foal is 70-80 beats per minute. REMEMBER to NOT take your horse`s heart rate after he has had exercise, but wait a good 15 minutes before you take his heart rate.

The next normal indicator is the temperature of the horse. The normal temperature of an adult is 99.5-101.4 degrees Fahrenheit. A foal`s temperature is the same.

Third, the resting respiration rate of an adult horse is 8-16 breaths per minute. A foal`s rate can range up to 24 breaths per minute Again remember to wait 15 minutes before you take your horse`s respiration rate after he has been exercising.

Things To Look For Daily

Every day you want to make sure your horse`s eyes are clear, if he is hydrated, and if he has eaten his food (if he has has gotten it yet). To check if he is hydrated, pull (not hard) a fold of skin away from his neck and let it go. If the skin fold goes down slowly, that means that he is hydrated. If it goes down quickly, make sure that he drinks his water.

Other Stuff To Know

An average horse drinks up to 5-10 gallons of water per day, and sometimes more. Also, the minimum of roughage consumption of an average horse is about 1% of its body weight which is about 10-12 pounds of good quality hay. Horses sleep standing up or laying flat on their sides. They make pawing and led wringing movements while eating. They rest their hind legs alternately. Foals will also make mouthing motions.


And that is how you judge if a horse is normal. Be sure to check your horse`s normal status about once a month!


Whats is Laminitis?

Laminitis is a disease when the tissues of the horses hoof inflame. Laminitis can also tear the support structure of the hoof. It can effect any horse at anytime.

What it is caused by?

Laminitis is caused by overeating, a concussion from riding on hard surfaces, and putting to much weight on on one leg. It can also be caused by stress from a long distance ride in a trailer.

Preventing Laminitis

You can prevent laminitis in many ways. The first being that you can limit your horse`s time in the pasture. You also don’t want to feed the horses to much grain, or feed them the really green grass that grows everywhere in the spring and fall. Also, you want to feed on a schedule, feed according to work level, get regular hoof trimming, let your horse be turned out in sand arenas, only walk your horse on hard surfaces, and monitor your horse`s health.


If Your Horse Gets Laminitis and You Don`t Know What To Do

If you see that your horse has laminitis, here`s what you want to do:

1. Call the vet. Laminitis needs to be treated like an emergency.

2. Do not exercise the horse. If he is out in a pasture, put him in a stall with deep shavings. If the pasture/arena is a distance away from the barn, use a trailer to get him to the barn.

3. When the vet comes he will usually give your horse painkillers and a sedative to lie down. He will also give you a diet for your horse while he has laminitis. Usually, the diet the vet gives your horse is 1% of his body weight.

4. Make sure to give your horse/pony extra attention, and call if you see symptoms of founder.