Hallmark Pulls Gay Ad-An Insult to the LGBTQ+ Community

zola-wedding-commercial-h-2019.jpgHallmark decided to pull ads featuring a same-sex couple getting married from the wedding-planning company called Zola Inc. A conservative group, One Million Moms complained and called an action to boycott the channel because it featured the ad. Hallmark told Zola Inc they wouldn’t use the ads anymore because it was seen as controversial.

According to an article, Hallmark Channel Faces Duelling Boycott Calls Over Gay Wedding Ads, written by the Wall Street JournalZola had aired ads with same-sex couples in the past on this channel without any issue.

If Hallmark aired same-sex couples before, then it seemed like they promoted equality and love. Now that they pulled an ad, it shows people they’ve taken a stand against the LGBTQ+ community. It seems like Hallmark pulled the ad now because it was seen as an inconvenience for them since they were getting hate for airing the same-sex wedding ad. If you’re taking a side, at least stay consistent.

“The only difference between the commercials that were flagged and the ones that were approved was that the commercials that did not meet Hallmark’s standards included a lesbian couple kissing,” said Mike Chi, Zola’s chief marketing officer. “All kisses, couples and marriages are equal celebrations of love and we will no longer be advertising on Hallmark.”

Hallmark promotes love, yet this is an issue? I guess Hallmark wants to show certain aspects of love. People will never understand that love is just love. They always want to refer to the Bible. Well, in the Bible, it also said that women shouldn’t speak in church and there were slaves back in the day. People always said, “God is Love.” So, confess your sins. Well, we can confess all we want, but it’s not going to make us straight. I refuse to marry the opposite gender just because I have to. If I ever get married, I’m in it for the long-haul so therefore, I want to be in love with the person I’m with.

The first and greatest commandment is in Matthew 23:37-40 “Love the Lord, your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is just like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

If you want to live word for word from the Bible, then don’t let the women speak and keep your marriage without love and then long for a divorce but are never allowed to have a divorce. It’s hypocritical when people tell others to treat people with respect and be kind to one another when some people can’t do the same. If you don’t love your neighbor as yourself, aren’t you breaking the commandment? Don’t spread hate, it’s simple.

 

A Very Much Needed Self-Care

We are all burnt out human beings. We take on more than we can handle but we do it anyways to prove to ourselves that we can do it. I’ve been feeling like that as well. I’m trying to do too much when I should do at least three tasks. I’m slowly getting better at it. I am trying to focus on three big tasks that needs to be finished. Everyone should have at least one day off for ourselves. 

For now, my days off are Mondays and Wednesdays. These two days are the only days I can fit my writing in. Otherwise, I’d have to wake up at 7 a.m. in order to finish. In order for that to happen, I need to stop sleeping at midnight. 

Some days, I need to stop and relax. I need to remember why I’m grateful for things I am able to do. Whenever I need to step back from my responsibilities, these are what I enjoy doing. 

Fun Shower Essentials 

Of course, everyone showers but these products I’ve purchased has made me enjoy showering even more. I usually shower at night but there are times where I want to shower before I start my day.

Twilight

Shower Jellies 

A couple weeks ago, I purchased Twilight Shower Jellies from Lush. I was attracted to the beauty of it but the smell was even better. The scent is described as a “calming lavender flower fusion and lavender oil blended with fragrant tonka absolute and sensual ylang ylang oil to create a familiar Sleepy scent.” This costs $8.95 and contains 3.5 oz. 

You scoop a small amount of the product and then slather it on your body. A little does go a long way. This will also break easily in the shower. How I like to use it is, I scoop a decent amount of product, step away from the water then use it on my body. After that, I’ll step towards the water and shower it off. Make sure you’re holding to the product nice and tight or else it’ll go down the drain. Some people may not like the shower jellies because it can fall apart easily but I love it. 

Body Conditioner 

I’m using Ro’s Argan Body Conditioner from Lush. My cousin introduced this to me when I was traveling to Toronto, Canada. We sampled this at Lush so my cousin just used this on my hands. I didn’t rinse at the time and wondered why I was so hydrated yet sticky. When I arrived home, I immediately purchased this product at my nearest Lush store. I checked to see how you would use this. I thought I’d have to use it after I put on body lotion. Turns out, you use this in the shower. You use your shower gel first, then you put a nice amount of body conditioner, wait for a few seconds and then rinse. 

I did purchase this at Lush so the price was fairly high for me. It costs $35.95 for 7.5 oz but it works so well and I will forever continue to use this. On Lush’s website, it states this has a juicy and fruity scent. This product contains cocoa, shea, and cupuacu butters along with brazil nut, almond and argan oil. After you rinse, it’ll have a vanilla and rose scent. 

When you open the product, it’s a beautiful, light, nude color and the scent of cocoa, shea butter, vanilla and rose fragrance rise to your nose and you close your eyes to inhale it. Wow, what a delight. Everytime I use this, it puts a smile on my face. After you rinse it, your skin does feel hydrated and very soft. My skin doesn’t usually react well to floral scents but I haven’t found a problem with this conditioner. 

Rising Star

Self-Care Activity Cards 

I found My Quality Time Self-Care Activity Deck 2nd Edition on Kickstarter and you can check it out at Dejadrewit.com. I was drawn to the illustrations and it’s like a tarot deck. There are 44 cards and each one has a fun activity you can do such as unplugging from social media or treating yourself to a dessert. I like to shuffle the deck and ask, “What shall I do today?” I draw the card and I’d like to do it at least once throughout the day. I am in love with it and will never stop using it. This deck reminds me to love and take care of myself. 

Tri Star Skatepark

Hobbies 

I am one with many talents. I enjoy photography, skateboarding, writing, reading, watching TV and playing video games. I will include all of that in my self-care routine. I enjoy skateboarding because it makes me feel alive and free. It also requires a lot of skills, especially balance. My goal for skateboarding is to do at least one trick by the end of next year and to not fall so much. 

I love photography so much I turn everything into a photoshoot. I’m trying to improve it and build a portfolio. I always go to the same places so I like to visit different places near me to see the potential. 

I watch TV shows like it’s nobody’s business. I am obsessed with Grey’s Anatomy and A Little Late With Lily Singh. I also start a lot of TV shows at one time so it’ll take me awhile to finish a series. It makes my mood so much happier, especially when I’m preparing for work. 

My self-care is very simple yet fulfilling. I don’t workout while doing this routine because I want to be as relaxed as possible. Plus, my hours will be spent catching up to TV shows.

 

Depression

  • Makes you forget the beautiful things in life
  • Makes you forget the friends and family who loves you
  • Makes you forget there’s someone out there who’d be crushed if you died
  • Makes you forget you were once filled with laughter
  • Makes you forget you have dreams and goals you want to achieve
  • Makes you forget you want to find love one day
  • Makes you forget you need to love yourself and put yourself first
  • Makes you forget doctors and your parents have fought for your life
  • Makes you forget all of the medical bills it took to help you get better
  • Makes you forget all of your hobbies
  • Makes you forget about everything you love

Depression takes a lot from you but try to fight a little longer. One day, you’ll laugh so much more, love so fiercely and hurt much less. Even if something gets taken away from you, remember to put yourself first and check in with yourself. Everyone else can wait.

Memories in July

July has been month of learning. Normally, I can’t keep a routine to save my life but with these books, apps, etc, I was able to do all of these everyday, at least once a day. I am thankful for everyday because we can take the opportunity of living as days for learning, wisdom and intelligence. Even though I’ve graduated, I’ve learned more about myself than I thought with these favorites of mine.

Spending Time with People 

I recently went on a trip to California with my parents. It has been inspiring and motivating. My parents have friends in California but they haven’t seen their friends in more than 10+ years but always kept in touch. Sure, they take pictures to capture moments but it’s the quality of the time being spent laughing, talking about old times and talking about the path they are on now. Those are the moments you can’t capture but you live in the moment. Friendships.jpg

I hope we can all keep at least one friend throughout our life because it is difficult to know who your true friends are. We always feel the need to fit in and find a group of people to go out with. When really, you need to find just one friend and make some memories. I put this in my favorites because it’s taught me to be more aware of the people around me and be more social, especially since I’m an introvert. 

Going to Church 

If you know me, you know I am a Buddhist but now I’m also a newly Christian. I’ve always felt closer to Christianity, especially in the darker parts of my life. A few months ago, my friend Nevada talked about her faith and the passion in her eyes was phenomenal. I wanted that passion. I’ve always wanted to go to church, learn about the bible, listen to worship music and act as how Jesus acted. She went to a church that I graduated high school from but because I had so many bad memories of who I was there, I didn’t feel comfortable going back.

Then I went to a service anyways and I loved it. Whenever the pastor speaks, it’s like he’s speaking to my soul. After service, we sat in a cafe to talk about her journey and more about God. Something in my heart felt right when I said, “I think I’m ready to become a Christian.” She asked, “Are you sure?” I hesitated but I knew the answer, which was yes. Then something happened that seemed like asking God to come in my life and work on me. Since He is the potter and we are His clay.

From then on, my spiritual journey began. I now read the Youversion Bible app at least once a day. I read the devotionals, which are like little lessons talking about certain topics and you can read the scriptures pertaining the topic. If you’re like me, you’re not a fan of reading on screens so I bought an actual Bible to highlight and learn from.

I’m listening to podcasts and YouTube videos pertaining to Christianity. One of the YouTube channels I watched was Coffee and Bible Time. The first video Iwatched from this channel was, “My Current Christian Faves.” Then I went into a rabbit hole and watched almost all of their videos. It’s a good resource for new Christians, such as myself. They have videos on prayer routines, how to keep faith when it gets hard and simplest ways to study the bible. 

A podcast I’ve been loving is the Daily Grace podcast, they also have an app as well. For the podcast, they go deep into topics such as theology and what it means, they’ve interviewed a woman who lost a child and how she is keeping her faith alive and how to keep scriptures in your heart and mind. The app has articles pertaining to being free from fear, being interrupted by God and has summaries for each podcasts. You can also do Bible studies on it, although there are only a couple of free ones. The rest you have to pay, which are $19.99 each. The app and podcast is a great resource as well.

Out of A Far Country by Christopher Yuan and Angela Yuan is an eye-opening, page turner kind of book. Christopher and Angela are amother and son duo. Angela has been through a rough stage in her life and ultimately turns to the Lord. Christopher is like a rebellious son who happens to be gay. He resisted the Lord’s love, especially since God said gays are an abomination.

Then Christopher came to find the term Holy Sexuality. Meaning, God would rather someone be committed to just one person and do right by them. While being single, it’s better to work on yourself and your relationship with the Lord. Then when your life aligns with God, go ahead and invite a lover in, but only with good intentions. See, Christopher realized that God said, it was an abomination, meaning the act itself and not the people. Their journey is one that I’m glad is told. It’s worth reading.

Nothing in life is ever easy but when you believe, act, and keep learning about life and yourself, there’s nothing greater than that. You truly can’t buy happiness so instead, invest in yourself and go on your journey.

A Reminder To Yourself

I know sometimes you feel weak and unloveable. Just know, you’ve been through hell and back and still survived. No, you’re living instead of just surviving. You have one of the kindest souls known to man and not many people do. They envy you because you’re smart, cute and talented. When you’re at your worst, know that there’s a whole world out there waiting to meet you. You’ll find love, even when it seems love wants nothing to do with you. Start with loving yourself, others, God and Buddha first. Also, focus on the bigger picture. Don’t forget you want a career first. You’ve changed so much and it’s been for the better. Please know, God and Buddha isn’t done with you yet.

Darkness Travels

DARKNESS.jpg

Imagine a group of friends laughing, chatting. You’re alone with no one to converse with and you’re sitting on the stairs, looking through it. Holding a sandwich in hand, looking down at yourself. Hoping, wondering if they’ll invite you to join. The group holds your gaze. But alas, they look away. The insecurities are screaming loudly in your mind, “How can I be a part of that?” You’re just another outsider looking in.

I wanted to be like them.

Happy and carefree.

Not sure what it means for me.

Am I meant to be a black hole?

Sucking the life of everything that’s golden?

When I took this picture I wasn’t thinking of a story behind it. After I developed this, I took a closer look. I developed a story perhaps everyone can relate to. I’ve always been the outsider looking in. Whether it was in college, high school, or work, there were always a group of people I would like to be friends with. But, they did not want to get to know me. I felt like I never belonged anywhere. I was a loner. Perhaps, I will always be one.

While looking to your right, sitting on the steps and eating a sandwich. Your heart sinks because you’re lonely and depressed. Hoping you will grow out of this funk faster than a cheetah catching its’ prey.

I wondered what was it about me that did not allow myself to be happy or carefree? The darkness rolls around just when my mood is cheery and fantastic. Growing up, I had to behave a certain way so I was never the type to dance or sing in public. Unless it was on stage. Hence why you would never see me at parties or school functions. I envied people who had a group of friends they would always hang out with and never grown tired of them. The ones who had each others’ backs so fiercely it was amazing. If you messed with one of them, you messed with all of them.

I wish I had those type of friends. Maybe one day I will.

They were the group of people you wished you could be a part of.

Choose Yourself This Valentine’s Day

The words people associate with Valentine’s day are romance and love. It doesn’t have to be about couples showing each other affection or trying to court someone if you don’t have a lover. That’s okay because I don’t either. I used to hate this holiday because it would feel materialistic. Only because I’ve seen a lot of couples buying each other candy, teddy bears and flowers. If you have a partner, show them an adventure instead. Or build a fort indoors.

If you’re single then you should embrace it. Take yourself out for some milkshakes, wear some makeup or wear your favorite outfit. When you’re getting ready in the morning, play some empowering music.

My mother asked me, “Why are you all dressed up today? You don’t have a date.” I don’t have to wait for a date in order for me to take myself out. I love and respect myself enough to take myself out.

If you’re feeling lonely or want to show yourself some love then look in the mirror and say affirmations. You are beautiful, strong, and life’s got your back. You could tell your friends, “Hey, I love and appreciate you. Have a nice day!” Also writing a handwritten letter to yourself and reading it while looking in the mirror can make your day. Smile to friends and strangers can be a mood booster.

Lately I’ve been listening to Sasha Sloan, Alyson Stoner and Lizzo. I love their empowering music and I instantly feel ready to take on the day.

Treat yourself by watching a movie. Just because it’s Valentine’s day, it doesn’t mean you have to watch romantic movies. If you’re into horror or true crime then watch it. If you want to do or say something then do it. No matter your status, single, taken or married, adjust the day to your status and make the most out of it. Don’t sit and wallow, take action and put yourself first.