March 26

20 Questions

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Underdogs, there are always more questions out there than answers. Sometimes the best way to learn about a person is to answer some deep questions. I have done this around a year ago, so I thought I would try this again. If you haven’t seen that, take a look at the post here. http://www.andtheunderdogwins.com/surprise-saturday-25-questions/ These questions were picked at random via social media, Pinterest, and emails that people want answered! I hope that when you come to this blog, that you are entertained and enjoy what you are reading. Sometimes, you want to know a little more about me, so this is a start. If you have questions that you would like answered, email or comment below and enjoy this session of 20 Questions.

1. Marvel or DC?

This is not an easy answer because I love both.  However, I can say that I was a DC kid, and a Marvel adult. While I love both of them, I have just a bit more love for Marvel because of Spiderman.

2.Favorite Doctor?

Again, all of them, but here is my preference list. Keep in mind this is being written before Jodie Whittaker starts as the 13th Doctor. Here is my current order: David Tennant, Peter Capaldi, Tom Baker, Matt Smith, Sylvester McCoy, and an honorable mention to the War Doctor himself, John Hurt.

3.What is a fact about yourself that you hardly share?

That I am a functioning dyslexic and wasn’t diagnosed until I was 18 years old. I slipped through the cracks of my school and I was convinced that I was stupid until I got some help. I excelled at college once I finally got the help that I needed..

4.What fictional character would you most like to be?

Wow, that’s like asking what my favorite limb is on my body. I can’t pick one.

5. Name 3 hobbies that you have:

Reading, Writing, Making Bath Bombs

6.What are some of your favorite places?

Hands down to travel is London, Paris, Chicago, Savannah, and more. Otherwise, my favorite places is with the people that I love.

7. What is your current favorite movies?

Right now, I absolutely loved, “Thor: Ragnarok.” I want to watch it right now!

8.Why did I start my blog?

It was after my friend, Laurie asked me to start writing one. She always enjoyed hearing my conspiracy theories, and my love of literature. She said it would be an excellent idea to try, and she finally talked me into trying it out!

9.What are my favorite blog posts?

I love all of them for various reasons because it records time, and who I was at the moment. However, I am most proud of my “Saved by the Bell: Illuminati”  http://www.andtheunderdogwins.com/saved-bell-illuminate/

Plus my series on Tupac: http://www.andtheunderdogwins.com/tupac-lies-part-3/

10. What do you think of Marvel TV series Vs. Marvel Movies?

I think there is room for all of them. I loved Agents of Shield, but I got so busy, I couldn’t watch it. I’m working on catching up on Netflix. I LOVE Jessica Jones and I’m one of the few people who really enjoyed Iron Fist. As much as I like Daredevil, it is hard to watch due to the excess violence. I thought the Defenders was excellent and I’m looking forward to the next season. Now, the not official part of Marvel TV, I have not seen the X Men TV show yet, but I will eventually try it out. I think these are just as good as the movies, just different.

11.What advice to you have for bloggers?

I don’t have much since I don’t consider myself a success yet. However, stay true to yourself. Get your own domain and invest in a good host. If you can, invest in an good email address as well. Don’t rely on free email address because they look less professional. . Realize that your first, or even fifth blog may not be enough to start making you money, or gain you an audience, but you have to be willing to try! Blogging changes every day so keep up on all social media platforms and learn how to use them!

12. Who is your greatest influence?

This is hard because I have 2. First is my Mom. She survived through some very horrible things, yet she still is here and fighting! The second is my best friend who is battling cancer for the 6th time in less than 4 years. She is my hero. There is literally no one else who can be as brave as her, facing all that she had to, with such grace and dignity.

13 What is the most frustrating part of blogging?

Tech issues are the big one since I’m by no means an expert. The second is working really hard for each and every blog but maybe not getting any audience interaction, shares, or comments.

14. What is a place you always try to avoid?

The Grocery Store, I seriously hate it and have gotten my shopping down as fast as possible down to an art.

15. Name one thing you like about your age right now.

I have honestly gotten to the point where I understand who is important in my life, and who is toxic. Those people have been let go. While there are moments that it is hard, I am a much better person without the weight of their hands around my neck.

16. What blogging equipment do use?

I have a very old and tiny HP laptop that hardly does the job. One of my goals is to get a new laptop in the next year. I have my Samsung Cell phone that I use for all my photos. I also use a good old fashioned note book and pens for most of my ideas. Always have a notebook and a pen!

17. What is on your playlist right now?

Great question. I’m about ready to do a detailed 90’s playlist. Right now, I’m listening to Pink.

18.What are 3 things that you want to change about your life?

I would love to get better quality sleep. I would like to be more healthy. I would also like to find that special someone.

19. If you could travel in time, where would you go?

I would go to Greenwich Village in the 1960’s.

20. Favorite Conspiracy Theory?

It’s hard to pick one, but the ones that started it all for me are Amelia Earhart (part of the reason my dog’s middle name is Amelia) and the Bermuda Triangle.

 

Alright friends, that was 20 questions. I hope that you enjoyed these questions and the answers. If you have any that you want me to answer, please submit them via  the comments, email,  or social media! We can do another 20 questions at another time if you like! Thanks and have a great one!

July 31

My Monday: My Story

Hello Underdogs!

What is my story? That is something that I heard over and over again this past weekend while I was attending the Thirty One Conference. The theme this year was all about your story because everyone has one to tell. People joke that they can edit their story, but you can’t erase anything. Now, you might be able to improve your story if you want, but the past is what it is.  You don’t define an entire book by a chapter you read in the middle. I thought about my story all weekend. I don’t think I have a very good, or a very interesting story to tell. However, I was encouraged to give it a try and tell what my story is all about. Here is my story that started me on my own Thirty One Journey.

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Back in 2013, my life changed forever, and not in a good way. My Dad passed away in June, and was I immediately fired from my job for not having enough time off to attend his funeral. After that, things went downhill very fast and I could do nothing but survive. I had some very bad people in my life who took advantage of the low points and I was not in a place where I could defend myself. I took care of my Mom, who is not only older and has memory issues, but is mentally ill as well. My life, wants, and needs did not matter.  I tried each day to take care of her, and all the things surrounding the death of a loved one who died without making any wishes known.  I had little support and each day and it was an amazing challenge to even get up for the day.

A few months later, my cousin, best friend, and hetero life partner, Amy was diagnosed with uterine cancer. They caught it when it was in the early stages, but I had a horrible feeling about it. I made arrangements to get help for my Mom so I could go back home and help take care of Amy. I lived several states away and I had been away from my home, dogs, and responsibilities for too long. Life never stops, even when your world does, which is one of the hardest things to deal with. My bad feeling about Amy’s cancer turned out to be correct because it spread and went to stage 3 in a matter of weeks. We were now faced with chemo and everything that comes with that. I had to divide my time between Mom and Amy and it was difficult. In the meantime, I couldn’t hold down a “real job,” outside of being a caregiver. I tried every odd thing that you could think of including selling off anything that I had. I didn’t really have anything to begin with, so that was pretty hard. I’d like to say that eventually the money came from all the hard work that I’ve put in, but that just isn’t true. However, I still had hope.

Amy’s case became worse and worse, and my Mom’s condition became worse as well.  Amy’s cancer came back two more times in less than a 3 year time period. She went through 2 major surgeries, 2 minor surgeries, over 200 days of chemo, over 100 days of radiation, over 100 days of physical therapy, and many mass complications. My Mom was very depressed, had an accident that almost killed her, and had lots of people willing to take advantage of her. Life was not good. In fact, every day was a nightmare. My dog died during this time as well, and I was truly an empty person just trying to live so I could help my loved ones make it another day.I was working up to 20 hours each day, but I couldn’t get any sort of help for the job I was doing. I was broke, exhausted, and hopeless. I also distracted myself by trying to help other people. I volunteer for a youth organization, and an organization that gives to Shriner’s Hospitals. My life has been always about giving back to other people. It helps me deal with my own depression and pain in my life. As empty as I am, I can still find something in me that will be able to give to someone else.

The reason this is important is to tell you how little money that I have, how desperate things are for me, and why I ended up trying out Thirty One. During this time, I was selling another Direct Sales product. Every year, I would put together a massive online store for people in Direct Sales to have one huge Vendor Party. I am all about helping out people like me that are trying to make a go of their own business. I have always loved Thirty One products, but I didn’t have money to buy extras let alone essentials. Amy had gotten an Emotional Support Animal (ESA) named Rose who is a chihuahua. I really wanted to get her a bag that she could travel around in while we were out and about. For those who know Rose, this is before she got a bit crazy and we could take her everywhere. One of the Vendors that I was working with was from Thirty One, and she was selling some of her old stock at a big discount. I decided to invest in one of the bags and have something for Rose to ride around in. Rose loved it, and I loved the bags!

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I really wanted to start selling Thirty One, but I just didn’t have the money for the kit. Over a year went by and I still didn’t do anything with Thirty One. I stumbled upon an ad on Facebook during February, that was doing the Thirty One starter kit for $31.00! I was very excited about it, but I didn’t have the money. I fought with myself until the very last minute to place an order for this kit. I made a list and kept trying to find more reasons to not try this out, than to go for it. Of course, my biggest issue is money so I didn’t know if I could justify spending the money for this kit. I then talked with my Mom, and Amy who both encouraged me to try it  out. They said I was doing something for myself for once, and it could lead to more opportunities.  Plus, it was one of the times that they both said I seemed generally excited about something. I took the plunge and signed up at 11:45 PM on the last day of the promotion. The girl that was from the Vendor party was no longer doing Thirty One, so I got assigned to a person who lives in my area.

I started soon after and never looked back. Of course, I struggle with sales, and booking parties. But I have never been so committed to making something work like this before. I have a great network of support who will always answer my questions, no matter how strange they might seem. I sold enough to make it into the 1/2 K group which is a sales group. I sold enough to earn lots of free product, and I have earned a bit of money.Plus, we have a Gives program where you round up your purchase and that money goes towards helping several organizations! That is so me!  It’s not steady, and I still have problems getting people who want to host a party, but it hasn’t stopped me. Before, I would have given up and shrugged it off. Now, I am finding ways to do new things. I am learning things every single day and I want to keep learning. I want to be a success. I want to have a career with Thirty One, and it is possible. This is the best way for me to still be a caregiver, and work for income on the side. I can be in the hospital and do a party online. I can be with my Mom, who I was able to move closer to me, and still hand out cards and show new product. I can watch YouTube videos on how to sell, while waiting in a doctor’s office. It is the best thing for me to be able to work around work.

So, my story may have started off as sad one, and the challenges have never stopped. However, I am stronger than my challenges. They do not define me. My struggles do not define me. It’s a few sentences in my story that is still being written. I can choose how hard that I will work for my goals. While it makes me nervous, it’s not enough to keep me from fighting and working hard to get my goals. I don’t believe in letting people know my goals, because a lot of negative can come from that. However, I am willing to say that I am working towards my goals, and I want Thirty One to be part of my future as well as my blogging. I think with hard work and dedication, my goals are within reach. My story is not finished, I am in the middle of a chapter that I would like to see rewritten. However, I am excited to see what will happen next.

 

Take a look at the new Fall Collection from Thirty One: Visit my page! Lisa’s Thirty One Page

 

July 18

Video: Blogging, Thank you, and Contests

Hello Underdogs!

 

 

And The Underdog Wins Video

I hope you are having a wonderful day! Here is a video as a thank you for following me and being part of the underdog family! I also have some product reveals, and some information about a contest!

 

Please follow the link above and take a look at what this blogger looks like, and how I feel about this wonderful page!

 

 

July 15

Surprise Saturday: 25 Questions

Hello Underdogs,

I am very happy to have the new followers! All of you make this blogging dream possible. I know there are many new readers, as well as a few who have been with me for years. I have been asked to do a post about 25 questions about me. To do this, I just Googled 25 questions, and randomly choose from the lists under the images.  So, here is my first every answer questions session. If you want me to do this again, post your questions in the comment section below!

1. Name 3 things that make you happy: My dogs,  my friends, and chips.

2. How many tattoos and piercings do you have? 4 tattoos, and 6 piercings.

3. Zodiac sign, and do you believe in them? Aries, and sometimes. Most of the time, it’s entertainment.

4. What was your favorite concert?  Paul McCartney, Bob Dylan, and all of Nashville River Stages.

5. Do you snore? Of course, doesn’t everyone?

6. What was your last dream? I had a dream that I was making hundreds of pasta stuffed meatballs. It was strange. Now, all I want to do is try to make pasta stuffed meatballs.

7. What is your favorite perfume? So many! That’s why I worked in fragrance for so long. Stella, Very Irresistible, Coco Chanel, Angels and Demons, Chanel #5

8. Age I get mistaken for? Never my own. I have been both older and younger, but no one ever guesses my actual age. I am pretty timeless.

9. Can you cook? Yes, but I’m not an expert by any means.

10. What is your favorite books? So many! I love almost everything by Anne Rice. I love all the Little House on the Prairie books, Lamb and almost any Christopher Moore books.

11. What is your favorite movies? The Wizard of Oz.

12. Do you take the shampoo bottles from the hotel? Yep! I poodle them!

13. What’s your favorite musical? Hair!

14. Are you lazy? I don’t think so, but I have lazy moments.

15. Do you believe in Ghosts? Yes, but I also always try to find a logical explanation. I guess I am a healthy skeptic.

16. Black or Green Olives? I love both, but I prefer black olives.

17. Would you bury a treasure if you found one? Nope, you wouldn’t hear from me again! It would be well hidden.

18. Were you ever a girl scout? Yes, and I hated it! I became a member of the International Order of Rainbow for Girls. That was a much better fit.

19. Did you ever watch soap operas? Yes, I watched Young and the Restless and Days of our Lives.

20. Peanuts or Sunflower seeds? Sunflower seeds, with no salt!

21. Do you remember your first day of school? Yes, it was awful!

22. Do you agree with the term, “Life doesn’t forgive weakness?” Life forgives nothing.

23. What is the worst song that you have ever heard? That, who rules the world girls, song by Beyonce. It’s so annoying!

24. If you could go back in time and witness something historic, what would it be? I would want to witness the painting of the Mona Lisa.

25. Can you swim? I do alright.

 

Okay, that was 25 questions! I hope you enjoyed these. Again, if you would like, leave a comment with more questions. Or answer some of these yourself!

 

In the meantime, Game of Thrones starts on Sunday! Get a free trial of HBO . Follow the link for details.

30 day trial of HBO

July 3

STEM Ads:Inspirational or a Bummer?

Hello Underdogs,

I hope that you are all having a wonderful day.  I might have been living in a bubble,  but I have only recently seen the new advertisement that is pushing STEM.

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It didn’t really come across that way…

This ad is sponsored by Verizon, and is aimed at helping kids go into a career that is more science, math and technology based.  If you have not seen the ad, follow the link to this article, the ad appears in the middle of the story. This is not the newest ad that I am referring to, but the message is exactly the same.  STEM Ad

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If you are not familiar with STEM, it stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.  There has been a huge push in the past few years to get children, especially girls, interested in these areas. The hope is for the children to eventually grow up and dedicate their life to these fields. I worked at Girl Scouts several years ago (a paid job, not a volunteer) and their main focus in 2012 was to shift their focus to STEM. In fact, during the interview process, I had to present activity ideas for the girls that centered around STEM.  While there is nothing wrong with this, I think there is an issue when you stop encouraging people to find something that they actually want to do even if that is being a dancer, or a neurosurgeon. I do think it is important to give children the opportunity to be exposed to more things like STEM, and other areas to help them find what their passion may be. However, I feel like this Verizon ad is actually a lot more negative than they intended it to be.

This ad shows several different statistics telling us how many professional football players, models, and other mainstream dream jobs are currently working in the Untied States. We then see several people who are at the top of their field telling us that we don’t need another Lebrone James, or another Drew Brees. What we do need more people in STEM aimed jobs. I see this ad as a double edge sword. I understand that the point of this ad is to light a fire so kids watching this will go into STEM related jobs. Or is it? I am actually confused at who this ad is aimed towards. I would assume that it is for older children, and teenagers. However, the style does not match the tradition thing that would catch a child’s eye and looks more adult. The clean, slick, and dark color commercial seems to be more for an adult that it would for a kid that you are trying to catch the attention of.  In a way, it is saying, there isn’t enough room for your dream of being a model, or basketball players, so you need to settle for something else. Might as well be in a growing field of STEM. It is actually very discouraging.

What is wrong with wanting to set a goal for yourself?Image result for goals Yes, it is very difficult to get to the level top athletes are, but why give people a reason to not work towards a goal? Real life is hard, and you will fail. You need to be ready for that fact. Even if you put in all of your hard work, and dedication that you have, you may never get where you want to be. That is not just limited to sports and people in pop culture. You can work hard all your life to be a cook, but you may never get to the place where you have your own restaurant. Should you give up because the odds are not in your favor? Why? What is wrong with people working hard at their goals fueled with their hopes and their passion? If people gave up, because the outlook didn’t look good, we wouldn’t have anyone where they are now. That includes doctors, engineers, teachers, coaches, dancers, artists, cowboys, researchers, toy makers, and on and on.

I think the problem here lies within the execution. If you want to give kids the opportunity to excel in STEM, then give them a reason to be passionate about finding out more. Don’t have the basis of your ad telling kids we don’t need another person in a certain field. A very smart kid would pick up on the fact that there are more people in STEM related fields than there are in professional athletics combined.  For example, there are more cancer researchers than there are professional tennis players in the United States.  Understanding that kind of backfires when you are telling people there are too many people in these careers so you should try another one in the STEM field. STEM fields are pretty full when you look at it that way!

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What we need to do is give kids some examples of these fields. We need to show them a reason to be excited enough to find a passion with STEM. However, we should encourage them to find their passion in life, no matter what field it might be in. We also do people a disservice by not teaching them that they may not get what they want in life, but you should never give up your dreams. We, as a society, put so much focus on a career that we identify who we are based off what kind of job we do for a living. We work to live, and it is a bonus if we love our jobs. If we don’t love our jobs, then we should still find a way to have our passions in our lives. For example, you can’t pay the rent being a photographer, but you do it on the weekends, while during the week, you work in an office.Image result for you do you, boo You need to have something in your life that makes your heart sing. There is no reason that you can’t work towards your goal, no matter what the odds say. It is important to learn how to work hard, how to set goals, and how to fail. You can’t learn a thing unless you understand how to work, and the lessons that happen when you fail.  If you want people to look towards STEM, then give them reasons to be passionate about the field. Don’t give people a reason to back away from their goals because of a very discouraging advertising campaign. Keep fighting for your dreams, but maybe research something that you normally wouldn’t gravitate towards. You might find a new undiscovered love! Don’t limit yourself, the world is yours to discover!

 

 

What do you think? Do you think this ad is encouraging, or kind of a bummer? Leave a comment or a like on this post.