Author Archives: megan497

About megan497

Welcome to Thoughtful Thursday! My name is Meg. I post a variety of content every third Thursday. Thanks for stopping by!

Travel and Packing Hacks (Konmari Method)

Hello everyone, and welcome back. I am currently on a trip to Germany and the Czech Republic, so I though I would share some tips I have learned while preparing for this trip. Many of these work for any trip, but there are also some that apply to international and cold-weather trips.

Something extremely important for any trip, especially a long one, is to pack light. I have always thought that it’s better to be over prepared than under prepared, so I know, this is really hard. But I do have a few tips that help. It is also important to have your suitcase neatly packed, as airports also prefer that in case of inspection.

1. Before the trip, figure out exactly what you will need. This all varies depending on the length of your trip, the weather, and location. So, don’t bring a swimsuit on your trip to Moscow in the winter. Make a list of every single thing you will need for the trip, be it clothes, electronics, or an umbrella, and check it off as you pack. Also pack according to the amount of luggage you are allowed to bring.

2. Pack outfits, not options. Sometimes when people pack they will bring multiple items in the same color scheme to keep their options open, but this is a waste of space. Plan a specific outfit for each day and bring those specific clothes. No more, no less. (Although you may bring a few extra items for layering in cold weather.)

3. Pack efficiently. Don’t just throw things into the suitcase. Fold items in a way that saves as much space as possible. Some people recommend rolling clothes, but I find that the Konmari method works better. To fold the Konmari way you:

  • Fold in half down the length of the article of clothing.
  • Fold in half the other way.
  • Then fold in thirds the same way.
  • The item should be narrow and able to stand up on it’s own.

To see a video on this folding method, click here.

Another way to save space when packing is to put smaller items into small, cosmetic-type bags together. Organize by category.

4. Make sure all liquids are of correct size and stored correctly. All liquid stored in a carry on must be 3.4 oz or smaller and stored in a quart-sized plastic bag. Liquids in checked luggage do not have the same regulations, but I would still recommend putting certain things like shampoo and conditioner in a plastic bag in case of spillage. You should also put these near the bottom of your bag so that if they do spill they do not cause as much damage.

*For any questions on what you are allowed to bring onto a plane, visit tsa.gov.

5. Make sure you bring something, even a simple plastic bag, to put dirty clothes in. Putting them in with the rest of your clothes causes them all to stink.

6. Lastly, decide which items you need in your checked bag, carry on, and personal bag. Take only the items you need and organize them neatly.

Now, onto the airport tips. You have your bag packed, but how can you make the travel itself go more smoothly? I have a few ideas for that as well.

1. Wear the right clothes to the airport. Some recommend wearing your biggest clothes on the plane to save space in your suitcase, but this really isn’t practical on certain trips. Instead, wear the clothes you will need immediately when you arrive at your destination. Or, if your flight is really long, wear your comfortable clothes and bring a change of clothes in and easily accessible bag. Some other tips for airplane wear:

  • Consider security. Don’t wear shoes that will take forever to take off and put back on. Avoid a belt if you can. The more jackets you wear, the more you have to take off.
  • Consider the temperature on the plane and your destination. Planes tend to be cold, but some are hot as well. Minimal layers, or a small blanket in your bag, are best.

2. Make sure you have everything you frequently need in your personal bag. I.D., passport, money, and electronics all fit into this category. If you will need it in the airport or on the plane, keep it with you.

*Have a copy of your passport just in case.

3. Bring a change of clothes and a coupe of toiletries (deodorant, toothbrush) in your personal bag as well, especially on long flights. If you’re on a ten hour flight, you will want to freshen up at some point. There is also the chance of your luggage potentially getting lost, and you should be prepared in case that happens.

4. Beverages. Food and drink are important, but they are expensive in the airport and not all airlines provide them; or if they do, it isn’t always good. So here are a few ideas.

  • Bring an empty water bottle. You can’t bring that much water through security, so bring and empty (reusable) water bottle instead and fill it up when you get to the other side. You don’t have to pay for one in the airport, and you’re saving plastic!
  • Bring snacks. You are allowed to bring food through security, as long as it is packaged and dry (check tsa.gov). I recommend things like pop-tarts and granola bars. You can also bring an instant oatmeal packet and ask for hot water in the airport or plane.
  • If you think you might not have enough time to wait in line for, say, Starbucks, don’t do it. It’s better to be hungry than to miss your flight.

5. Bring plently of entertainment. Download something from Netflix. Read a book. At least bring a pillow so you can sleep. Planes get boring so you will need something to occupy the time.

6. As for the airport, make sure you get there early. One to two hours for a domestic flight, and three for international.

Now, as far as travel in general, I do have just a couple more hacks.

1. Contact your phone and credit card companies before travelling abroad. You want to know what the limits and restrictions are, and you don’t want to get in trouble for spending money in another country without letting them know.

2. Be responsible with money as a tourist because there are always pickpockets around. Don’t put things in your back pocket. Get something like a zipped, over-the-shoulder bag.

3. Get a unique luggage tag to easily identify your suitcase in baggage claim.

I know this was pretty long, but these tips really can help. What do you think? Do you know of any tips that I missed? Let me know!

Thanks for stopping by and I’ll see you next time on Thoughtful Thursday!

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Filed under Life Hacks, Thoughtful Thursday, Travel, Trip, Winter

Miss Jessie’s Multi Cultural Curls Review

Hello readers! Welcome to the first official Thoughtful Thursday post!

Today I’ll be talking about a product that I tried recently called Miss Jessie’s Multi Cultural Curls.

The label explains how the creators of the braid are biracial and created a balm that works on “unique curls.”

Now, let me preface this by saying I am not biracial. I am Caucasian. But this product is designed to work on many curl types and I wanted to find something that would work for me, as my curls can be difficult sometimes.

(And between you and me, I bought this because Zendaya uses it, but whatever…)

So. First impressions. Right away I noticed that the bottle was a nice size. It is 8.5 oz, so you get a decent amount of product. It also has a very strong citrus smell, so if you don’t like scented products this isn’t the one for you.

I may have made a couple mistakes the first time I used it. My hair felt a little different than normal because of a different shampoo, and I think I may have used a bit too much.

The product was somewhat thick and pretty creamy. I put the product into my hair, let it dry a little, then went to sleep. My curls turned out decent, but got a bit frizzy after a while. I think it could have gone better if I 1. Let my hair air dry more, and 2. Used some anti-frizz serum with it.

The next time I washed my hair, I tried the product again. I used the right shampoo, some anti-frizz, and a bit less of the product. My curls turned out great. Not crunchy at all.

Overall, I think this is a pretty great product. I think I would give it an 8.5/10. I’ll keep playing with it.

Thanks for reading! I know I’ve been gone for a while but I want to get back into this. See you next week!

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Filed under Hair, Reviews, Thoughtful Thursday

The Murder Above the Law

Hello everyone, welcome back. Today’s post is more serious than usual. It is about something that I am very passionate about: abortion. I wrote this essay as an assignment in school. At first, I wanted to edit into a better format for my blog. Instead, I have decided to keep it formal and add an introduction instead.

You will notice that my case in the essay is to make abortion illegal. While that would be amazing, I realize that it is very unlikely. The media and government of today are far to liberal. And, making abortion illegal could cause women to get them black market/illegally, and cause even more deaths.

So, my hope in posting this is not necessarily to help abortion become illegalized, but for people to see my side. Why I think that it is wrong, and should be stopped. If you, for whatever reason, don’t agree with me, that is fine. Read or don’t read. But please don’t be hateful. And if the need arises, feel free to unsubscribe from Concerning Megan. Like I said, all that I ask is for people to hear me out, maybe have civilized conversations, but nothing more. I also have sources if anyone would like to see them. Thank you.

 

Abortion is one of the hottest, most highly debated topics in America today. Do women have a right to choose what they do with their own body? Or does everyone, even the unborn, have a right to live? Our government is trying to decide where the law lies on this issue to this day. Per the World Health Organization, 40 to 50 million abortions occur worldwide every year, ten thousand of which are in the United States. Any number of those 40 to 50 million lives could have changed the world. Abortion should be illegalized in the United States because it ends the life of an innocent child, tears apart a fully pain-capable body, can cause future medical complications for the mother, and should be unnecessary because of current medical advancements.

The first and most important reason for abortion to become illegal in the United States is that it ends the life of an innocent child. Although they don’t like to admit it, even someone who works at an abortion clinic can tell you that life begins at conception. Advocates of abortion like to believe that life does not begin until farther into pregnancy, or even until the child is born, but science proves them wrong. Some argue that if the child cannot survive outside of the womb, then they are not alive, just a part of the mother’s body. There are plenty of people who rely on things other than themselves to stay alive. Someone may be on life support, and would die without it, but they are still alive. There are also abortions that occur at an age that the fetus would be able to survive outside of the mother’s body. The law, at least some laws, regard an unborn child as alive as well. In fact, laws about murder are not the same in all situations regarding an unborn child. If someone murders a pregnant woman, they are accused of two murders: the mother and her child. But, if a mother decides to end her pregnancy, it is perfectly legal.

Second, abortion tears apart the body of a child who is fully capable of feeling pain. Studies show that a fetus begins to feel pain around twenty weeks of age. Others say as early as eight. Most of the abortions that happen in the United States happen at or past that point. Doctors will usually inject a substance called Digoxin into the baby’s heart, which kills the child by heart attack. The child is removed a few days later. This method claims to be painless, but anyone who has experienced a heart attack will say the exact opposite. In many situations, however, a different method is used. Aborted fetuses’ tissues are often used for stem cell research, but Digoxin poisons the tissues. So instead, the physician will use instruments such as forceps and embryotomy scissors to remove the baby’s limbs from its body and remove them from the mother’s body. These procedures are done past the point of pain-capability. The child can feel every bit of it. There were medieval torture methods that were very similar to this, but they were used on criminals, not innocent babies.

Abortion should also be made illegal out of concern for the mother. Abortion comes with the same health risks as any other surgery, as well as more. The risks vary depending on the type of abortion. All of them come with risks of infection. Late term abortions can tear uterine walls, as well as other organs. Bleeding can occur. Abortion also causes risks for future pregnancies. Losing, or killing, or child can make it more likely for the same to happen to a second. Mothers are more likely to experience bleeding during pregnancy, and have many other complications. Mothers who have had one abortion are also more likely to get another abortion. Most importantly, studies have shown that many more women die from abortions than childbirth, especially in the case of suicide, and their risk of cervical and other types of cancer increases.

Finally, abortion is unnecessary because of many contraception methods available. America is very technologically advanced. People are fully aware of how babies are made and how to prevent a pregnancy. They know the risks, and if they are willing to take them or not. Pro-choice advocates often argue about what to do if someone is raped. Rape and incest only account for one percent of abortions. Even in those cases, we have the technology to prevent a pregnancy from happening. Many people in a situation of rape turn to adoption. There are many women in the world are incapable of having children, and would gladly raise one instead of allowing the child to be killed. Another argument often seen is in regard for the mother or child’s health. Only three percent of abortions are done out of concern for the baby or mother’s health. Babies born with disabilities are just as happy as those without. And, in today’s world, with all of the medical advancements, it is very unlikely that a mother would die giving birth.

In conclusion, abortion is a deplorable procedure that rips a child from its mother’s body with no mercy. It ends the lives of millions of babies around the world every year. Infants do not need to die because of their parents’ irresponsibility. Abortion should be made illegal because it is unnecessary. Abortion should be made illegal because it is risky. Abortion should be made illegal because it is torture. And, abortion should be made illegal because it is murder.

Also feel free to check out Pamela R. Lee’s post here. She expresses these same ideas, probably much better than I do. I have mentioned her in a pervious post as well.

Again, thanks for reading. Until next time.

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Filed under Abortion, Thoughtful Thursday

The Best Tea for Summer

Hello Everyone! I know it’s been a really long time. I want to try to do some more blogging, we will see. But today I wanted to talk about a tea that I’ve been hooked on recently.

Something that you should know about me is that I love tea. Hot tea, iced tea, with cream, sugar, all of it. I especially love tea with flavors, like Chai, cinnamon, or fruit. Summer is the perfect time for fruity flavors in tea, but the hassle of brewing a cup and waiting for it to cool down or adding ice takes away the fun.

You can imagine my excitement when I found out that Twinings, my favorite brand of tea, makes a line, with a variety of flavors, of cold-brew tea. One of them being mixed berries.

Mixed Berries Cold Brewed

There are many flavors: citrus, classic, mint green tea, mixed berries, and peach. My favorite is the mixed berries. It has the perfect amount of fruity flavor and is ready in minutes.  It is an awesome drink for summer.

You can find the tea here. It can be enjoyed hot or cold.

I know it is a short post, but thanks for stopping by to read!

 

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Filed under Spring, Summer

Glass jar/bottle diy’s

Hello! Today I want to show you all some mason jar/glass bottle diy’s. I love glass. It’s so pretty and I love being able to see what’s inside. I would have a house of glass if I could. So I love to use these in my room.

1. Money Jar

I keep my money in a larger glass jar. I like the look of it, and it gives me sort of an idea of how much money I have. I have a slit in the top of the jar so I can easily put cash in.

2. Coffee grounds

This one works just as well with full coffee beans. But the general idea is to put coffee in a jar, and smell it when you wake up. The smell is supposed to help you wake up easier. The lid on this one has the ring attatched.

3. Candy

If you have some candy lying around, mason jars are a great way to store it. It looks nice and keeps it sealed away from ants.

4. Pens

I’ve mentioned this one and the next one in a post before. Take a mason jar and only put a ring on it, not a lid, and fill it with multicolored pens. It’s functional and fashionable.

5. Flowers

For this one, faux flowers and glass go great together. I recommend filling the bottle with beads or something though, it’ll look better.

6. Seashells

This works with seashells, or pretty anything you want to display. For this one I used a more square-shaped jar and older lid.
You’re welcome to all of my glass lovers! Thanks for reading!

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Filed under DIY, Favorites, Spring

Some Simple Things to Make you Happier

Hello everyone! I’m back, for now. It’s been so long! I’m gonna have to give you guys some updates. 

Today I’m gonna talk about some simple ways to be a little happier. I’m a generally pretty happy person. Even when I am feeling sad, I can still laugh and smile through it. Here are a couple of things I do:

1. Acknowledge your reflection

If you look away from your reflection every time you walk past a mirror, you will begin to hate the way you look when you do look in the mirror. Looking at yourself in the mirror will make you more comfortable with how you look. And if you smile in the mirror too, every time you pass one even, you will end up smiling more often.

2. Treat yourself now and then

Get a bathbomb. Go get your nails done. Make a diy face mask. These small things are simple but so comforting.

3. Laugh more often

Even if the joke is stupid, laugh anyway. Then you are smiling, and laughing is good for you. One of my favorite quotes is “A day without laughter is a day wasted.”

4. Experiment with your look

This doesn’t have to be permanent. Wear a new color of lipstick or eyeliner. Wear your hair natural. Get the shoes you’ve been dying to get.

5. Pay attention to other people

Wallowing in self pity never gets you anywhere. And when you’re a happy person, your problems don’t seem quite as bad. You’ll stop focusing on your problems as much. And you’ll notice things about other people you didn’t notice before. People need people.
Go forth and be happy today! 

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Filed under Fortuitous Friday, Funny

Wordless Wednesday

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2 Years!

Hey guys! Happy New year! Even though it’s halfway into January…

 I have an announcement! As of January 2nd, Concerning Megan is officially two years old! It’s definitely been an interesting two years. Lots of content on here and the rest of the world. I’m excited too we what this next year brings! Guys, can we do something? Can we get to at least 100 followers by the end of the year? It’s not that many more than we already have. It would be really cool.
Well, that’s all I have for today. Thanks for reading!

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Filed under Birthday, Blog

Fall/Winter Fashion pts 2+3+4

Hi guys! I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas! Today I’m showing you how more winter outfits. A few weeks ago, Chiana showed you part one.
Today I’m showing you three outfits, because we wanted to do one per week but I missed two weeks. Onto the outfits!

My first outfit is a little more “fancy.” I’m wearing a jean jacket from Old Navy with a striped shirt from Gap, black ankle jeans from Forever21, and black ankle boots from Kohls. You can wear any type of jewelry with this outfit, which i love because it it versatile. You can also wear a different shirt, or color pants. There are many ways to switch up an outfit like this.

This second outfit is comfortable but also cute. It’s also a little more blingy. I’m wearing a red long-sleeved shirt, which can be from anywhere, a grey sweater from The Limited, dark skinny jeans from Gap, and a pair of loafers from Stuart Weitzman. The gold necklace matches the buckles on the shoes and the pants.

The third outfit is my favorite. I saw someone wearing a jean jacket with the sleeves cuffed over the jacket and I though it was super cute! So I tried it and loved it. I’ve been super into cuffing things lately, like plaid shirts with sweaters and stuff, and I think even printed leggings might look cool with cuffed pants. I don’t know, I’ll have to try. Anyway, the outfit. I’m wearing the same jean jacket as before and the same black ankle jeans as before. I’m wearing a green long sleeved shirt, which you can get anywhere, cuffed over the jean jacket, and a pair of suede boots from Old Navy.
That’s all I have for you guys today! Make sure to like and subscribe! Thanks for reading!

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Filed under Blog, Christmas, Fall, Fashion, Fortuitous Friday, Holiday, Winter

Loneliness – 5 Tips

sky-man-person-night-landscape

Hi everyone! I’m back for another thoughtful Thursday! I haven’t done one of these since July! And, before I move on, I want to let you know that I wrote a post yesterday updating y’all on what’s going on with the blog, but it’s saying that I wrote it two weeks ago. I don’t know what’s going on. Read it here.

 

Today I’m going to be talking about loneliness. I’ve been wanting to address it for a little while. It’s something I can relate to, and want to share.

 

A week or so ago, I was scrolling through Instagram, and I saw a picture saying, “feelings the signs experience most often.” Now, I don’t believe in astrology and horoscopes, but I do find them entertaining. So, I looked through the list to find my sign, Sagittarius. According to this person, the feeling that a Sagittarius experiences the most is isolation. I had never really thought about it before, but when I did, I agreed with it. I do feel loneliness. Especially this time of year when I am off of school a lot.

You see, I am extremely extroverted. I love being around people. It fuels me. People make me happy. So, when I am at home for two weeks and can’t see people in person, it makes me feel really lonely. Over thanksgiving break, my friends and I would Skype a lot, which helped, but it isn’t the same. Talking to people is amazing. But I need to be able to actually touch them.

So, the other night, I was laying in bed, and I felt really lonely. I missed people. Not just my friends, but everyone I see on a daily basis at school. I wanted to see them. But I couldn’t. It made me really anxious.

I’m not the only one who gets like this. I’m sure some of you guys do. I want to help both you and me.

There are lots of things you can do when you are feeling lonely. It all depends on who you are, because some things work for some people and not others, but here are some ideas.

 

  1. Take a walk

This is one of those ones that only works for some people. For me, it depends on the day. Sometimes, walks are amazing. The air, being able to think. But sometimes I wish I had someone with me so we could talk. Or at least a dog to walk so I wouldn’t be alone, which leads me to the next one.

2. Pets are great

Pets are great for cuddling, if that’s what you’re in the mood for, or playing, whatever suits you. If you have a pet, go pet your pet. If not, there is probably a service dog training program in your area that is open to volunteers.

3. Watch something funny/lighthearted

This one might be my favorite. Laughing and being fixed on what I’m watching gets my mind off of how I felt lonely. If you don’t know what to watch, the new season of Fuller House if really funny.

4. Get out

Just go somewhere. It doesn’t matter where. Go get coffee, swing on some swings. Surprise a friend and take them somewhere. Go see a movie. Just not a sad one.

5. Figure out why

Maybe you’re like me and just need to be around people. But try to figure out why you feel alone. If there’s someone you miss in particular, talk to them. And, you can always talk to me if you have no one else!

 

Thank you for reading! I hope you found some good tips here. And seriously, go watch the new season of Fuller House.

 

 

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