Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The TED Talk

Here is the TED talk that we watched in class if you missed it or want to share it with a friend:


Hope it was meaningful for you.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Dear Parents

Dear Mom and Dad,
How is everything going back home? I hope it is going great and you are not missing me too much. It has come to my attention that I am in need of a large amount of money. My car is in the shop and it needs repairs. The parts for this are not cheap, $1200 to be exact. You both know that it is impossible for me to acquire this money because I do not have a job or any way of making money. I could sell drugs and what not but I do not think you would want me putting myself in these dangerous situations. I would also like to point out that I could not come see you anymore on some of the weekends or for holiday breaks. I know you miss me a little and it would kill you to not see your baby . I hope this is reason enough for you to send the money but if it is not just imagine how bored I am sitting in my room all the time. I am unable to go anywhere and get food with all the boys. I use to go all kinds of places with my friends but now we are all stuck in our rooms. For the sake of my friends and I please send the cash to fix this dilemma. Thank you and I love you most!

If you missed class Thursday night...

Here's the Vonnegut reading assignment: "America: Right and Wrong."


Need A Digital Camera

Mom and Dad,
Hey you guys, Happy Early Thanksgiving! I can’t wait to get home to see you, and on my birthday too! My birthday actually falls on Thanksgiving Day, how often does that happen? Well anyway, that’s what this letter is about; I really need an early birthday/Christmas/I love you because you’re my son/ GIFT. I can pitch in a little for it, but it’s too much for me to buy on my own. I need a digital camera and a good adjustable tripod stand from Best Buy. I will be taking a Mass Communications class next semester and I have to have one; it is a requirement for the course. I promise that I have researched all of the best prices in every store in the area, and this one is the best deal.
Before you answer, please just listen to me. I am already paying full tuition by myself here at Winthrop, and all of that is going to fall on me when I graduate. As you know, I do not have much cash in the bank and what I have now is dwindling fast. I have to have this camera for my major. So please, can you two help me out? I really can’t wait for us to go to Myrtle Beach next week. I’ll see you when you pick me up on Wednesday. Bye!

I'm tired of walking, it's time for a change....

Dear Mom and Dad,

How are you guys doin? I've come to a little delimna over the past few months at Winthrop. I know you're asking eachother, what could possibly be the delimna? Well as you already know, you didn't let me bring my car up here for the first semester, and I think I really need it. I know you're probably thinking that I just can't get everywhere that I want to go. That maybe one reason but there are others.
You remember that Walgreens that you thought was a good idea for us to have close to the school. I'm starting to think it wasn't such a good idea, because that store is pricey. There is a Walmart a few miles down the road, but it is not in walking distance, and I know you would want me to budget my money. See I'm learning already.
Another reason is because, I know you don't like me just getting in the car with anyone. Well with me not having a car, I will have to do that. I'm in college so there are going to be places where I have to go that is not walking distance.
Im not telling you what to do, but it would probably be in your favor to let me drive next semester. I have a work study job so I will be able to pay for gas. So please take that into consideration. Thanking you in advance.

Your loving son,
Akeem Elmore
Dear Mom and Dad,

Wow the time sure does fly. I can’t believe this semester is almost over, but I am so excited to come home and see you both, and Salem and Shadow of course. I have been so busy these past few weeks; it has been packed with assignments, work, and trying not to get sick. That’s a lot! If you two know me at all, you know I wouldn’t be writing if I didn’t want something. First of all as I said earlier the end of the semester is coming up, and with that means new classes and new books. I know that is really exciting, but I need a little help with paying for them, I have some money saved up, but if you guys could help me with the rest that would be great. You help with the books that would allow me to get you two some awesome Christmas presents. And everyone loves a good present from the heart! Speaking of Christmas I was also just checking to make sure that you got my hints for a GPS. I am sure you did, I already pitched my business proposal to you both. I just making sure you or “Santa” should I say got the memo, Garmin please! It really will come in handy for work, so I can know where I am going, and if I wanted to go visit Clemson or Wofford. It is just safer to have something telling you when to turn rather than having to read map quest directions. Thank you so much, love you guys see you very soon.

Lots of love,
Mommzy and Daddeeeee! How are you. I miss you so much! Life feels so uncertain without your guidance and protection. Your wisdom is my fortress. And you shelter me with your love. I really appreciate you guys and how you have raised me. All my other friends are goin'crazy! They are out gettin' knocked up, busted for drugs, turning gay, smoking weed and committing suicide. This is what makes me thankful thank a at least listened to half of what you taught me. Wow that makes me thankful. Its like my peers have fallen in a trap and I was able to walk out unaffected. I am equipped to with the necessary to fix life problems and avoid downfall. Now comes the time to thank you both. I love you so much. I don't thank you necessarily because of what you have done but who you are, my parents! Its not just the fruit but your vine that gives me life. God has given both of you so much wisdom in the parental role. I give him thanks too. The bible schools and christian activities have paid off. I have become a grown man who walks upright and just. Hard work equals reward. The greater the sacrifice the greater the reward. Both you two and I have sacrificed greatly! Now comes the reward! We should be rewarded with a great Christmas this year! This would be so lovely, eh! We should send Uncle to get a nice tree and let the pine smell fill the house with its nostalgic aroma. We will play Christmas music and sing song by the big boy like Nat King Kole and Bing Crosby. And Momma you can expertly bake all the warm treats with you nurturing hands for all who can handle such heavenly pleasures. The present will look like a mountain under our tree this year. I have a gift for both of you in mind. It will be perfect. Now, I know that you will ask me to make a x-mas list this year. The problem is that I already have everything. I have wisdom, and discernment. You have raised me so that I could sustain and obtain whatever I need or want. But you guys love me to greatly to accept that as a valid answer. So, I guess I will just show you the rear sway-bars that I want to install on the back of my car. It has a lot of body lean when I approach a corner and could potentially flip and roll-over. That is why i would like the sway bar! It would feel better driving the car that handles properly and reduce under steer which is beneficial on curves also. If a car has too much under steer, when the wheel is turned, it will just plow and not steer at all because of the loss of grip on the front tires. Sway bars are an investment to keep me safe, that's all! Both of you know how dangerous these slippery and icy conditions can be so it will help me like you wouldn't belive! But more than that, I just want to spend my holiday with you guys, uncle, my cuz and my dog and kitty! Oh and err... my sister...Thank you guys once more for the what you have done and for the values that you have instilled in my life. I love you sooooooo much. Goodbye!
With love from your only son, Brandon

Dear Mom and Dad

Dear mom and dad,

The Christmas season is coming, and you guys have been asking me for a list of things I want. So here is the list: A plane ticket to Boston. Thats it. Alaina has invited Dana and I to come up before Christmas to spend time with her. And to pick out and decorate her Christmas tree. I have wanted to go back to Boston for the Christmas season since we moved here. I miss the snow, even though it is freezing. I miss all the ice skating and Christmas feelings that comes with the first snow of the season. I miss sledding and snowboarding. Most of all though I miss having the family together there to experience those feelings together. By buying me this ticket you guys can give me most of those experiences that I had as a child and lost once we moved here. Also this will be Dana's first time up there and with all the stuff going on both her and Laina want me there as support and because we all love to hang out together and have fun. Think about it, Dana, Laina, and I can do all the stuff we used to when we lived there. Like go out early in the morning and have a snowball fight, and then come inside, drink some hot chocolate, then go back outside to do some shopping or play in the snow again. We can make cookies, and cakes, and maybe even go see grandma for a Christmas surprise. I am Dana's best friend the one who she spends most of her time with and she wants me there to experience all of those first times she is going to have. Please mom and dad this is what I really want for Christmas.

What would be even better is if we were all there together

Love always,

Effective Whining

Dear Mommy and Daddy,

How are you guys doing? I miss you all so much. I'm here at school trying to stay on top of this work so I can make you guys very proud of me. Have you realized that Christmas is right around the corner? Time fly doesn't it? It's about that time to start buying gifts for the family. You guys are going to be very surprised when you open your gifts from me! Mommy, earlier this year you told me that I wouldn't get as much gifts like I normally would. So this year, I'm only asking you guys for $200. Before you panick, the money is for a good cause. Uncle Quinton's death was a very tragic death for everyone, and you guys know that we were very close. After he died, do you remember my cousins and I agreeing on getting tattoos in remembrance of him? I'm the olny one that doesn't have the tattoo done yet. I miss him so much and I would like to have him with me always. Mommy, we also agreed on the tattoo so that would be a wonderful gift. I know that it doesn't cost $200 for a tattoo, but I also need a coat and some scarves. The weather in Rock Hill is different from back home. I would like to keep warm! It would really mean a lot to me. I love you guys with all of my heart! You mean so much to me! Kisses!

Love your ONLY baby girl,


Effective Begging

Dear Mom and Dad,

I'm just writing you to see how you guys are doing and to hope you are doing well. Here at college I have been bored and have had nothing to do during my spare time. So I think that it would be nice if you all got me something for Christmas that would help fill the gaps in my schedule. I have a few suggestion that will help you choose the right thing. One of the options is an IPhone because it will allow me to call you and keep in contact better along with providing me some games to play. The other suggestion is a little more economic but will still allow me to fill the empty hours. It is just a few movies like iron man, Kung Fu panda, and perhaps if possible the Home Alone series. These movies would provide entertainment along with a good way to relieve stress from the passing exams. I do hope you all are doing well and that you all make a good decision.

Love, Samuel

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Letter 2 My Parents

Dear Mom and Dad,
How are you guys doing? I’ve been so busy with school work, trying to improve my GPA, that I loose track of time most days. I’m sitting at my computer typing a paper for my writing class and you guys came to my mind. I really miss you guys. How’s everything on the home front? Mom, guess what, I have to write 6 papers and they are all due around the same time. Pray for me!!! I don’t tell you enough how much I appreciate you. I don’t know where I would be in life if you guys didn’t raise me the way you did. College is hard and expensive. I know that I’m a grown woman, with a job and lots of bills, but I’m having some financial problems. Daddy!!! I love you. I miss you. Daddy your favorite daughter’s car is acting up on her and I know you don’t want anything to happen to her while driving!! I don’t have a dollar to my name at this moment and was wondering if you would give me a few dollars to get my car worked on??? I can here you right now, “What does she think; I’m made out of money?” Ha Ha I know you daddy. I really need to get this work done because it cutting off on me in the middle of driving. I’m scared it will cut off while I’m driving in front of a big tractor trailer truck and that would be the end of your favorite little Smurf. I know you don’t want that so could you please, pretty please go to my bank and put $700.00 in for me that would be great. You’re the best DAD every, oh and mom you are too. Talk to you later.

Lots of Love,

All I Want For Christmas ...

Dear Mom and Dad,
How is everybody doing? Good I hope, Dad done any work on the boat yet? Knowing him I am guessing that is a no.Well maybe for Christmas I mill get him some boat shoes or something. Speaking of Christmas,it is not that far away. I know you want to start shopping early so I figured I would help you out and let you know what I would love, early. So me and my friends have been trying to work on a spring break trip. We really want to go rent a cabin in Breckenridge, Colorado, and do some spring skiing! We looked up prices and a cabin and flight for four averages about $500 per person for a week. For Christmas, I was think that we could split the cost and your present could be the $250 for the flight. I know it is a lot and that it is a frivolous thing. Just think about all the fun we will have! A couple of girls out in the mountains, snowboarding, shopping, and eating.I have been there before too so I know my way around too. Plus it is a safe place to go.People will be all over the place! I figure if you pay half then I could take care of the rest! This would be such a fun and memorable trip.This would be such a great present, its all I would need and would give me such a great start to the year !
It would mean a lot to me, I already have every thing planned out and our hotel come with a ski pass and food! Also I would send you and cat something, because I know you guys love Breckenridge paraphernalia!
Ok I will see you guys soon!!!
Love, Briana

Christmas Wish

Momma and Daddy,

Can you believe Christmas is just around the corner? In fact, it is only thirty-five days until then! I know how you (Momma) agonize over what to get me for Christmas, and how Daddy always tells you to just buy something and wrap it so you will not be tempted to take it back. Well, this year I am going to take all your worries out of shopping! I will simply tell you what the perfect present is for me. This year, all I want for Christmas is a beautiful pea coat. I know what you are thinking: I have a perfectly fine winter coat already. However, my North Face jacket just is not cutting it here. It does not keep me sufficiently warm. I nearly freeze by the time I arrive at my classes! It does not help that my North Face jacket is so worn out from all the times I wore it last fall and winter! I think it is time for a fresh start, and a new pea coat would set just the right attitude for my fresh start. Not to mention that I would be the cutest girl on campus in an adorable pea coat!!! That is all I really want for Christmas!

Much love, kisses, & hugs,

Effective Whining

Dear Mom,
As you know, Christmas is approaching and I could really use a car. I know that I am eighteen hours from home and you don't want to have to drive that far alone, but that is why I took it upon myself to ask someone to drive with you. Don't worry about the way back because you can fly back and it'll be cheaper if you book your flight now. Honestly, do you want me catching rides with people I don't know? I have to find a way to practice and back, find a way to liftinging and back and find a way to study hall and back, I mean you don't want me walking in the cold do you? I could get really sick and then you'd get a doctor's bill. Which is worse? When it starts to get super cold, I don't think you'd want to have me walking from the main campus to the coliseum to practice and then walking back in the cold with my pores open. If I had a car, I could drive and turn on my heat to stay warm. I could drive to go get anything I need and not have to worry about asking my teammates. A car would just help me to get around much easier. Going to the doctors office, the dentist, going to get food, medicine, and the airport. I know you don't want to pay for a taxi everytime I leave and come home from the airport, do you? SInce gas is so cheap right now, it wouldn't cost you that much to drive here, plus you always take the short cuts and make it where you need to be faster than what was expected. It doesn't have to be an expensive car, just a car to get me around. I know you won't get me a car that's bound to break down with the paint chipping off and the interior falling apart because you don't want to have to pay to get it fixed. You don't want to have to put more money into the car than you actually paid for the car. So please mom, consider getting me a car. I would really appreciate it. Love always,

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

All I Want for Christmas....

Dear Mom and Dad,

As you can see, I've included both of you guys in this email. 

I wanted to discuss Christmas this year.  This years needs to be about celebration and should be unforgettable.  Just this time last year, we had no idea that our holidays would be put on hold due to mom's unexpected yet tortuous brain surgeries and subsequent hospital stay.  We had no idea 21 days could be so long and that Christmas seemed to have no meaning when a loved one was suffering.  So, we spent Christmas, New Years and mom's birthday in the hospital.  Who cares that we actually celebrated Christmas in February?  Last year was tough and now a part of the past.    

So, instead of making lists for Christmas ideas, shopping like crazy people, and spending mad amounts of money..... LETS GO ON A CRUISE!  Neither of you have ever experienced a cruise.  I have and its wonderful!  I think it would be a great opportunity and if WE ALL pitch in - it will be cheap!  There are some great deals right now if we act NOW.  Yes, I am saying I will forfeit Christmas presents this year IF we take this family vacation.  I know, you're probably thinking, we've been divorced for 13 years.  Why would we do this?  Well, I have the answer.  Mom and Dad, you're better friends now than in the 17 years you were married.  We all get together often enough during the week for dinner "together" - so why not?  We can all pitch in.  If this seems like a crazy idea, just think of it as you're loaning me about $300 buck a piece.  You usually spend more than that on Daniel and me combined -  not to mention, our families!  You just reap the benefit of our enjoyment and it will be better than any expression on our faces from opening any gift!  So, come on!  Think hard about this.  It is really a great idea.  It will be like all those family vacations that our friends talked about that we never experienced.  Let's make it happen.

Picture this......my bottom lip is poked out and I have a really big sad face.  I'm begging.  PLEASE.

Talk to you both SOON!
Love you both LOTS!


Christmas Wish

Dear Mom and Dad,
As Christmas approaches, I know you’ve been wondering what I would like for Christmas. I believe I have mentioned art supplies and boots as options. If you have already bought one of these, I will appreciate the gift! If you have not bought my gift yet, I’ve thought of another—more valuable—option. A plane trip to Michigan over break would be awesome!

You may ask, “Why not simply take a trip to somewhere in the state? We could arrange for a weekend trip to the mountains.” Beautiful scenery is not what I would be expecting in a trip. While I would enjoy seeing a lovely landscape, my wish is more for adventure. You can both testify to how much I love adventure—you have accompanied me to numerous Girl Scout campouts and have sent me to a variety of summer events. Somehow, in all these activities, I’ve never been able to travel by plane. A plane ride would be more exciting—and safer—than an eighteen-hour drive.

Of course, at the heart of my wish to go to Michigan is my desire to see Lainey. She is my only girl cousin near my age. We are both at a pivotal point in our lives! I would love to hear about her experiences so far this year at the University of Michigan. So while you may like to see me over Christmas break since I am usually at Winthrop, I ask you to grant me a week-long trip to Michigan. I would always remember how you helped me stay connected to my cousin and gratified my sense of adventure.

Love you guys!
Dear Moma,

I really need you to send me some money. I could use about $100-200, which sounds like a lot, but I could use it for so many things. First of all, I need to buy Christmas presents for my family and friends. You know I don't have a job (yet), so I really need you to give me this money. I have to get presents for Jessica, you, Maddy, Amanda, and Courtney and David. That is a lot of people to buy for and I don't have the money now. I have used it all buying gas or food or prescriptions. I know I need to be careful with my spending, but I have really tried and I haven't spent much on extraneous things lately. All of the money you have given me has been going towards the things listed above and nothing else.
This being said, I want you to know that I would only use the money to buy Christmas presents, gas, groceries, and prescriptions, although I would mostly use it for the presents. You know that I like to give people good presents and this year I really want to do that again, even though I'm in college and broke. I know Maddy will get me something really awesome like she always does and I want to give her a nice present back. You know how much I miss my best friend, so I definitely need the money to get her something especially good because I never see her because she is far away at SCAD. I also want to get you something nice. I know it's weird that you give me money and I end up buying you a present with it, but I don't have a job and the allowance is my only income for now. Remember that I get you nice things you usually wouldn't buy yourself, but you deserve. I'm doing you a favor. I also need to get my sisters and brother in law something. Jessica usually has a list and there's usually something cheap on it that I can buy, but I never know what to get Courtney and David. I want to get them something nice though because Courtney always gives cute gifts and I want to return the favor.
I like to get in the Christmas spirit and really give people nice things that they will like, so to do that I need some money and I would be very grateful if you did. Things will be easier once I get a job. I submitted my application today for the Mac Lab here on campus and hopefully I will have a job next semester, if not next year for sure. I will also be looking for a summer job this summer along with my nutrition internship. I will be busy and making money soon, so this extra boost will probably only be a one time thing. So could you please send some soon. I also need gas to get back home for Thanksgiving, so I would use some of it for that, but gas prices have fallen, so it won't cost much! I would really appreciate the money and you would be ensured a nice Christmas present, not that it matters much to you, I know. Well I cannot wait to see you at Thanksgiving! I hope things are going well there since I last talked to you.

I love you and miss you,

All I want for Christmas

Dear Mom and Dad,

There is only one thing I want for Christmas this year. From past experiences, you know that when I only want one present then that means I really want it. This gift would be the new iPOD Nano, 16 GB, and the perfect color, purple. It will be the perfect Christmas present for me for so many reason.

The first reason being, how much I love music. I have been deprived from this cherishment for way too long. The second reason is that this iPod is too cute for me not to have! I know you can see me walking around campus sporting this little piece of technology. I know you think I am crazy because of how expensive it is, but I am not asking for anything else for Christmas. I know you are thinking that you just won't get me anything, but you know you will feel really bad. Plus, I will be able to listen to my music while I am trying to fall asleep, which you know I have been having problems with because it's been so loud in my building. This means that not only do I want the perfect gift, but that I also need it. Just think how easy it will be to get me just one present, and also how happy I will be Christmas morning when I open to find just what I wanted. Is that not what you want, to make your baby girl happy?

Now to make things more simple for you, I have included a website that you can go to inorder to get my iPod shipped to our house. Now isn't that convenient? Oh and you can also get me a protective case to keep this treasure safe. The case is also available online. ( www.bestbuy.com)

Cannot wait to see you in a few weeks for Christmas! It is going to be so nice to be home with my family again. Hope it's not too cold down there like it is up here. Love and miss yall!


Effective Whining

For this final blog post, you'll pretend that you're writing a letter to your parents. You need to convince them to send you some money for school or buy you an expensive gift for the holidays. Start with:


Make it 200 words. Make it good.

See you Thursday.