Mother’s Day ideas

This year, Mother’s Day is on Sunday, May 14th. Mother’s Day celebrates motherhood and is a time to celebrate our mothers and mother figures. For some people, it’s hard to think of what to give, or do for, our moms/mother figures because they deserve the world for everything that they do. These are some of the things I was able to come up with, and I hope they’ll help you when picking out something for your mom.

Breakfast in bed

This will always make anyone feel special and is easy and affordable. Figure out their favorite breakfast foods, and what they like to drink (coffee, smoothie, tea, etc.) and make it! You can add a flower to make it look prettier. Here are a few easy recipes if you’re stuck on what to make:




Who doesn’t love receiving makeup? Or better yet, getting a makeover! Sephora comes out with gift sets specifically for Mother’s Day. You can also just buy your mom’s favorites (you can add brushes too) and put it in a box and decorate it. Sephora also does makeovers in store, but most hair salons also do makeovers. Or, you can give your mom her makeover yourself!





If you’ve been on social media you would see that bath and shower products are the new hype. Brands like Lush come out with special products for Mother’s Day, which you can buy individually or buy in a set. Other brands also come out with luxury soaps.



image taken from: blue_skies_bouquet.htm




Flowers are always the easy go to gift. But you don’t have to get the typical red roses. There are so many other beautiful flowers besides roses! I personally love sunflowers, and I know my mom loves daffodils. They’re easy to find at any store, or you can order them online and have them delivered. You can always add flowers to any other gift you give.






Customized anything

Whether you DIY a picture frame and put a photo you know is special, or have your mom’s name engraved onto a nice piece of jewelry, she’ll love it. Customized gifts are nice, and can also vary in prices, so it can fit any budget.


Mother’s Day is right around the corner, so start looking!

Things to do if you’re not going to prom

This years prom will be on Friday, May 5th. Some people are very excited and are planning on going, while others aren’t. If you are not planning on going, but still want to do something fun with your friends or alone here are some ideas:


Getting a manicure and pedicure done is always fun and relaxing. You can sit back, read a book, watch videos on your phone, or catch up with whoever you went with. Tams Nails (Woodbury) is one of my favorites.

Movie night

By yourself or with family and friends, binging on movies you love is always a good time. Some of my recommendations are Grease and The Breakfast Club. But if you’d rather go to the theater these are some of the movies that are currently playing, The Fate of the Furious, The Boss Baby, Beauty and the Beast and Smurfs: The Lost Village.



Bake something new. If you’re into baking, you can find a new recipe online and try out! This is extra fun if you do it with friends or siblings. But if you prefer the easier route, you can head to a grocery store and buy your favorite cake mix. Whatever you make will be great to eat as you watch movies!



Have a photoshoot!

Dress up in your favorite outfit and go to a park or to your friends house and take pictures! You don’t need any kind of fancy camera; your phone will do just fine! Be creative and have fun! You can buy props from places like Urban Outfitters or a dollar store.


Go to a party/teen event

Prom isn’t the only place where you can dress up and dance the night away. If you’d rather go to a more casual event/dance than prom, start looking now for events. Myth Nightclub (Maplewood) sometimes hosts events for teens ages 16-21. There are also more venues in Minneapolis that do events for teens so start looking!

There are many more things you can do if you choose to not go to prom. These are just some of my ideas. Whatever you choose to do be smart and safe.

For even more ideas, go to:

Valentine’s Day gift ideas

Valentine’s Day is filled with love and happiness, but if you’re a last minute shopper, it’ll be a day of stress for you trying to find the perfect gift for anyone special in your life. Here’s a list of a couple of ideas for everyone.


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If you and your partner struggle to decide what to do on date night, give them a mason jar full of date ideas so when date night rolls around you two are set! This link is a DIY on how to make this gift,





You can never go wrong with giving chocolate and/or candy as a gift! Thankfully, many candy companies come out with heart shaped boxes full of their candy. You can get them at places like Walmart, Target, Walgreen’s and many other stores. Prices go from $1 and up. 




Stuffed animals are also a super easy choice. Again, you can find them in almost any store. Since prices are $5.99 and up, you’ll be able to find something that fits your budget.



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If you and your significant other have been together for a while, or you just want to get them something more sentimental you can get them a personalized keychain. has this, and many more items, you can customize to give to your significant other. 





Another easy option is to put all of the person’s favorite candies, snacks, and anything else they might like, or need, into a gift basket. You can buy Valentine’s Day themed candies and decorate the box with pink red and white decorations. You can also buy them from various websites. This gift basket is from





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For anyone that enjoys food, chocolate covered strawberries are a must! You can DIY (do it yourself) it and make as many as you’d like, or you can buy them and have them delivered to whoever you’d like. Prices depends on where you buy them, but it will be cheaper if you do them on your own.




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If you are really out of time, you can always get a cute, funny, cheesy card, and just write down your feelings for the person you will be gifting this to. Add in a gift card to their favorite store or restaurant and they’ll love it and you!

Different ways to deal with stress

For Highland Park Senior High, finals are coming up fast, and we all know what comes with finals: stress. Finals are something almost everyone dreads, all the late night study sessions, all of the homework that you have to do, and of course, all the stress that comes with it. Some people may not know how to release that stress, or to calm their nerves. I’m here to try and help those people.

There are multiple ways to try and reduce stress and not all people can use the same method to help. So here are some ideas/methods that you can use to try and help reduce your stress.

Of course, one of the most popular ways to relive stress, is to meditate. Some people don’t have the time to meditate though, especially if they’re piled with homework.

If you don’t have spare time, something you could do while studying, is blast some soothing music. According to Psychcentral. com, music has been proven to calm anxiety, heart rate, and even lower blood pressure, so create a calm playlist and listen to it while you study away. 

Laughing out loud is another way to reduce stress. Not only does it lighten the mood mentally, but it also boosts a brain chemical called endorphins which helps your mood.

Some people say that going online and texting isn’t the way to lessen stress, but it is proven to not only make us happier, but to also reduce our stress by a lot. The Mayo Clinic says that it is better that you Facetime a friend, or call one another to maybe study together, or share what’s going on in your life.

The final idea that I’m going to share today is to be active. Go for a jog around your neighborhood, or even do some jumping jacks and sit-ups on your living room floor. Getting your body to move can ease your stress and even depression.

If you’re feeling stressed about anything at all, all of these methods could help you try and reduce it. Good luck on your finals everybody; you’ll all do great!


Dealing with the cold

Minnesota is having one of the coldest winters of any state in the U.S. This means residents from all over the state have to prepare to face the cold in order to get wherever they are going. Students are especially affected by the cold because they have to commute to and from school every week-day. We asked students of Highland Park Senior High how they deal with the cold inside or outside.

A common response from students was to wear lots of layers. Ranging from jackets, sweatshirts, and blankets students said they wore whatever they could to stay warm traveling to and from school.

At home, some students said that the best cure for the cold was a warm blanket and a hot beverage. One student said, “I deal with the cold by bundling up, then I go home to drink hot chocolate, or tea, then watch a movie occasionally.”

Some students were pros when it came to the cold, and didn’t feel like it was something to deal with. “ The school is warm, so I don’t worry about the cold before I go to school,” one student said. “ I don’t wimp out, and go outside without fear,” another student exclaimed. Cold doesn’t seem to bother these people which is a trait most wish they could have.

Some students, however, simply are not coping with the cold at all. Despite living in Minnesota, some people just do not get along well with frigid weather. One 10th grader said, “I don’t deal with the cold. I get frostbite.” Another senior student said, “I just look forward to getting back indoors.” It seems some of us Minnesotans can barely make it through each winter alive and well.

So far, this winter has been very cold, and there has been quite a lot of time with temps below zero. But, we are looking towards a warmer few weeks coming up, and spring is coming right around the corner.


J.A.M. – How to pass your permit test

Hello, this is Jane, Alandra,  and Michelle and we have recently received the question: “I’m about to take my permit test what will help me pass ?”

We have all gone through drivers ed, and have gotten our permits, so here are some great methods that can help you out. We would like to say that the permit test is fairly easy and mostly based on common sense, a few laws, and signs.

When teens go to driver’s ed, the first thing they receive is a manual. Many overlook this essential tool, tossing it on their bedside table and completely disregarding it. If you’re smart, you won’t do this though, as it’s like the study guide for your permit test, and along with notes taken in class, looking over your manual is key to acing your permit test. Reading helps information process thoroughly in our minds, helping the jumbled words from instructors come together to make sense. When looking over your manual, take it in as if it is a textbook for one of your academic classes, memorizing key points and phrases. The manual gives you headings, which helps you when taking your own notes. Use this valuable tool to your advantage.

Along with your manual, one thing that really helps is studying with good and specific notes. During drivers ed, you are supposed to be taking in everything the instructor tells you, so notes are really helpful. You should go over the notes you receive and highlight the important things (measurements, traffic laws, signs, and symbols). After you have highlighted what you think is important, then you should look over them, maybe make a game with them, have someone quiz you, and anything else that you will think will help.

Another method to use, besides reading, is observing things as you’re in the car with an experienced driver. It is extremely crucial to ask questions and get comfortable with certain signs, intersections, and proper driving etiquette. Many of the questions on the test are easier to remember once you have asked and/or discussed the laws and scenarios that come with driving. Talk with your parents, go over your quizzes from drivers ed, and you’ll be ready to get your permit!

Overall, the permit test isn’t something you should overthink. With these helpful strategies you’re basically guaranteed to pass. Once you arrive at the facility to take your test, stay calm and try remembering everything you’ve worked so hard to learn. If you’ve studied enough you’ll be out the door and ready to drive!

Stocking stuffers for teens 2016

As your teenager gets older, their interests may tend to differ from yours. Shopping is harder because you don’t know what to get them, or you might have a tight budget, or you don’t know if they will like it, and maybe you aren’t sure if what you want to get them is “in.” This article is a guide to small gifts (perfect for stockings) that are popular to the current teenage generation.


Earphone/earbuds are a perfect gift, with technology, electronics, and music being at a societal high. The cost varies, however, the most efficient brands seem to be Sony or Apple.

Gums and Mints

A common essential for teens in school are gums and mints. Some claim it helps them focus, others just enjoy being able to pop something flavorful in their mouth throughout the day. It is a common stocking stuffer and is inexpensive as well.

Junk Food

Teens love junk food. Chips have been around for years and have maintained their status as one of the most popular types of junk food. Along with that, candy, pop, and sugary treats like doughnuts are consumed with great pleasure.

Caribou and Starbucks Gift Cards

Sleepy, hardworking high school students love to indulge in coffee drinks, whether or not they have much coffee actually in them. Specifically, Caribou and Starbucks are the more popular chains people go to.

Gas Gift Cards

If you have a teen, they are probably driving or will be soon. This is a resourceful way to give your kid money for gas in order to secure they will use it on gas.


Socks are a good way to go. Providing warmth and style, they are convenient to receive in the winter. Elites would be a good gift for the sporty type of teen. Another popular alternative is fuzzy socks.


Chapsticks are the perfect stocking stuffer. It is an essential that everyone loses before it’s gone. This is the perfect opportunity to help your teens stock up.


A good stuffer to ensure your kid/s stay moisturized throughout the winter is lotion.

Video Games

Video games are perfect for gamers who always want the newest games released.


Gifting an ornament is a good gift for your teen who will soon move on to live in their own place with their own tree.

Nail Polish

An inexpensive gift for someone who loves being creative with their nails and making them their own personalized accessory is nail polish.

Phone Case

A new way to accessorize is alternating your phone case and/or having more than one. This is a good gift for both genders. A good way to find a nice variety of cases to choose from is to go to a phone accessory kiosk located in most malls.

Keychain Lanyards

More of a practical gift, keychains are a good organization tool for teens with keys for their houses, cars, etc. You even have the option of buying one or making a lanyard on your own.


Another practical gift, to help organize money and cards, is a wallet. No more money falling out of pockets accidentally.

Compact Mirror

A compact mirror is a useful tool when on the go to check and make sure your appearance is up to par, or to re-apply any makeup you may have on. Directed traditionally towards females.

Face Wash/Creams

Teens = Hormones! Acne is highly common among teens who are growing into adults. Help them maintain hygiene by getting them something to wash their face with or additional help from acne creams, etc.

TV Show/Movie DVDs

Entertainment plays a major role in mainstream teen society. If your kid has shown interest in a tv show or any movies, buying it is a good gift idea so they can have a permanent copy to watch at their leisure.

Mini Tool Kit

A mini tool kit is a good gift for older teens who will soon have to fix things on their own when in college and later on in life. This is a good starter kit, providing the essentials to make minor repairs.


If you smell good, you feel good. Gifting your teen with a nice scent can help them step up their charm and give them character. Once people are older they tend to be defined by their “scent” usually provided by their perfume/cologne of choice. This gift would be the start of that.



Fun things to do this winter

So many people each year stay inside during the winter. Turns out that it can be very unhealthy for you. Getting outside, especially in the winter, will help you so much in the long run. Being indoors all day everyday in the winter can cut off your healthy bacteria and make you sick while we are already so far into cold and flu season. So why not get out, find some stuff to do, and have fun!

Sledding Hills:

There are so many places you could go sledding this winter near Highland Park. There is of course the Highland Park water towers, and also the recreation center which is also connected to the library. Also some other hills near Highland Park is the Meriam Park and Baker Park hills both are very steep. If you don’t see the hill closest to you try this website:

Highland Park Community Center

1978 Ford Pkwy. Saint Paul, MN 55116

Highland Park (behind water tower)

1400 Highland Pkwy. Saint Paul, MN 55116

Baker Park

209 W. Page St. Saint Paul, MN 55107

Merriam Park Recreation Center

2000 St. Anthony Ave. Saint Paul, MN 55104

Ice Skating:

A very popular activity for the winter in Minnesota is ice skating, as we are the famous state of hockey. There are many places you can go ice skating, or play some games of hockey, or just boot skate on a rink all around the Saint Paul area. The biggest rink, and most popular outdoor rink, is the Wells Fargo Winterskate. That takes place downtown Saint Paul in front of the Landmark Center. There are many other rinks outdoor as well. The closest outdoor rink to Highland Park is the Palace Recreation Center or the Edgecumbe Recreation Center. If none of these rinks are close to you can refer to the website below to find yours:

Pioneer Press Treasure Hunt:

While most of us are eagerly awaiting 2017 for new years revolutions some are exited for 2017 for the annual Pioneer Press Treasure Hunt. The treasure hunt is a tradition for some people since 1952. The hunt is for a medallion that you can go search for all around Ramsey county starting on Sunday, January 22nd. The medallion, if found, is worth $10,000 and until found, there are clues in the Pioneer Press Newspaper everyday or on the  Twin Cities Website. The treasure hunt actually has its own hotline so when the hunt starts the hotline will let you know the current status of the hunt.

So have a fun winter and get out and do something!

Staying organaized

I don’t know that much about staying organized, and I hope that by writing this article I can be a little more organized.

Since school has already started, I think that by starting this new quarter, we should at least start with a clean and organized slate. Some of these tips are my personal favorite things to do.

Staying organized helps in many different ways, not just physically staying organized but also mentally. I think that by staying physically organized, you can have better hygiene and start new habits. Those habits can help you in your learning abilities and in being a better thinker – not making any bad decisions. So, basically, staying physically organized can also help you stay mentally organized, and vise versa.

One of the things that I’ll say that really has helped me, is having a planner. Even though it looks really lame to have a planner, and writing in it after class is over, it’s not, because when you write stuff down, you remember it more. So in my case, all I have to do when I get home is to get my planner out and read through all of my assignments that I had throughout the day.  I can then do them either right at that moment, or I could go do something and come back, like taking short breaks. It helps me because I can’t concentrate on doing one thing for a long period of time; I don’t know why.

Another thing that keeps me organized more, is having color coded things. For example, the first two classes that I have, the notebooks are black and white. I have the rest of the notebooks in different colors to keep me organized in my book bag. I didn’t think that color coding would help me be organized, but now I have the habit of putting my notebooks where they belong in my book bag without thinking about it twice.

Something I haven’t tried, but I’ve heard about is that it is helpful to work on only one thing at a time, and to have only one project/assignment out at a time. When I say I haven’t tried this it is because I have to get everything out of my book bag and see everything that I have to do or else I will get lazy and not do it. Because of this, I keep everything out and put it back in all at the end.

I hope that these tips have helped you in any way possible, have a great quarter and good grades!

Beauty standards and are they fair?

You have probably heard all kinds of talk about beauty standards and how they affect a lot of people all over the world. Many people have had trouble with body image and self-esteem but some don’t. The truth is, 7 in 10 girls believe that they do not measure up in some way to beauty standards.

When I use the term “beauty standards,” everybody has a different definition, opinion, and views. Because of this, I made a survey to see exactly what are the beauty standards here at Highland Park, who students think runs the beauty standards, and if these standards are fair. This is what some people said:

How Confident Are You?

Many people said they are confident or extremely confident. Actually 15 out of  20 people responded like that. It surprised me because along with these answers the other 5 that said they are either not confident or extremely not-confident. Given these results, I tried to make a connection to the responses, and I couldn’t really seem to find one except that 4 out of the 5 that said not confident to extremely not-confident are managing a mental illness.

What Are beauty Standards In Your Mind?

I found this section of the survey very interesting. Mostly because in both sections of the confidence levels most felt very strongly about what it means to them. Here is what some people said:

  • A set of rules to oppress people.
  • Dressing or looking like other people
  • Wearing makeup
  • Showing more skin
  • Big Eyes
  • Slim figure
  • Things people say that make them believe they are beautiful or not beautiful

So, as you can see, there are many different opinions and views on what beauty standards are. Because these responses were in both sections and had no connection to mental illnesses, like in the question “How Confident Are You?” it leads me to believe that beauty standards are just there in our minds. Maybe we don’t think about them all day every day but they are there and we are very aware as adolescents as to what beauty standards are.

Do You Think These Standards Are Fair?

A lot of people circled “no” saying that the standards are not fair. 14 out of 20 people said that the beauty standards are not fair. And on the flip side there were also those that said that the standards are indeed fair. So, if you could choose. What would you choose. Fair or Unfair? Real or unreal?

So every single person is different. Everybody has their own views on so many different things and this one topic in particular shows this. Because this can sometimes be a strong or hard topic to talk about for people, it shows that, yes, people have their own opinions and we have to respect them. Beauty standards affect the world as a whole, and it’s up to you to change it or keep it. Could you imagine a world without judgment or misunderstanding?