Published :)

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Hello Reel Family!

I AM SO HAPPY TO ANNOUNCE MY BOOK IS OFFICIALLY PUBLISHED AND AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE ON AMAZON!

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Thank you for all of the positive messages I have received about this journey 🙂

From a budding relationship with the Director of Financial Aid to get free tuition  to living with roommates (which she calls the Chamber of Bitches) this is a collection of stories about sex, studies and student loans.

More importantly, these fragmented stories are built for you. To keep it interesting, all of the stories are based on true events with a spice of imagination. Confessions of a College Girl is more than the complicated emotions of a struggling student. These stories allow you, as the reader, to become this college girl’s best friend.  Hope you enjoy this genuine, unapologetic story of a fictional college girl 😉

Yours,

an Author

 

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Just Getting Started in 2020…

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Hiiii Reel Family!

Wishing you all a wonderful and happy new year!

I am super excited about 2020! The year 2019 has brought significant growth to my personal and professional life. So thankful for another year!

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Accurate depiction of me on New Years Day

In the meantime, stay tuned with Reel Review by Lauryn in 2020 because I’m just getting started. . . 

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Ready to Launch…

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Hi everyone!

I am super excited! The manuscript is finished, the edits are done.

This is it people the book is complete!

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All I need to do is polish up this cover and then we are ready to launch!

What’s the book about you may ask?

It is a fun, authentic and unconventional look on college life! It is unapologetic, fun, spunky and I definitely plan to keep it real for you. It doesn’t matter whether you have finished college, just started or only went for one semester, this book is a collection of short stories meant for you.

Be sure to subscribe to this email list to get more juicy details 🙂

I was so excited to share this with you!  I am on a roll with my New Years resolutions! What are yours? I would love to hear about them in the comments below!

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Book Writing Update!

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I have been writing for five days straight.

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The writing process has been such an adventure. As of today, I have finished the manuscript and on my third round of edits.

I am exhausted, to say the least. I am so excited though! Can’t wait for you all to read about an authentic fiction story. 🙂

If you are currently writing a book would love to hear about your journey! 🙂

Subscribe for more juicy updates!

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Me editing this book. . . 

 

 

 

 

Amazing Health Awareness: A Review of Forks Over Knives

Blog, Movies

I finished watching this documentary at 6:28 pm. By 7:02 pm I was at the grocery store picking out carrots, bell peppers, beets and veggie pasta, eager to transform my current Mediterranean diet to a plant based one.

How did I get from my couch to the grocery store in record time?

Forks Over Knives. 

Unable to find a action movie, I decided to explore the “Documentary” section.  I was intrigued by Forks Over Knives since I just wrote a recent article about food.

The holidays are a wonderful time. It’s a time to relax, catch up and gather around with family and friends. It is also a great time to discover new ways to improve ourselves leading into the new year. Cheesy I know. But once I watched this movie, I was shocked about how great it was!

They went through everything! From interviews with doctors to a large longitudinal health study done in China.

I thought to myself, Why haven’t I started this diet sooner?

After watching the documentary,  I have a new sense of awareness about the foods I choose to eat. The film made it simple. Statements were supported with facts that inspires people to make a change. A cinematic masterpiece.

If you’ve been inspired or just thinking about a plant based diet in general, I encourage you to visit watch the documentary or visit the Forks Over Knives website. They have delicious recipes and starter tips about developing a healthy diet.

I have to admit, it has only been a couple days of this new lifestyle.  I feel in control and empowered by my food choices. I even look better too.

The film highlights diseases such as hypertension and diabetes can be reversed when people start implementing a plant based diet.

The movie can be enjoyed alone or with family. Warning, have your car keys close to you because once you finish, you’ll end up running to the grocery store with a new sense of health and happiness.

I’ll be sure to keep you updated with the results 🙂

Until next time.

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Great News. . . I’m Writing a Book!

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Hi Family,

I have been writing a lot lately and I love it. After many nights with the gang (my tea, my computer, a notebook and my favorite pen), I am happy to announce I am writing a book!!!

I love what I am doing everyday. I wake up early in the morning to get started on my edits and spend the late hours in the night endlessly researching about publishers, favorable book sizes and color schemes. The best books have the best covers. . . obviously.

I am super excited! I plan to finish the book by the end of this year and release it to you in 2020!

I am super proud of this moment and wanted to write it on my blog to keep you informed and document this journey with you.

Will update soon 🙂

Happy Holidays

xoxo,

Lauryn

 

A Guide to Mindful Eating

Blog, Movies

WASTED! The Story of Food Waste

I took a trip to Chicago this past week. Before I left, I ate some hummus and chips for lunch. Stamped at the bottom of the hummus package said “Best Buy” along with an arbitrary date. Thinking this was just any other day, I tossed it. There was still hummus in the jar, and I didn’t think about the consequences of food waste.  I didn’t think about that hummus until I was choosing a movie on the plane, and clicked on Wasted: The Story of Food Waste.

“90% of Food Waste in America goes to landfills”

This was a shocking statistic. I have to admit, at first I thought this documentary was some sort of scare tactic. But this documentary took on a new twist.Wasted  incorporated the harsh realities of food waste in a tasteful manner. Through the eyes of great chefs.

Let’s face it. If you know these articles by now you know that there is some sort of celebrity crush. This documentary delivered and served up two smokin’ chefs:

Chef Dan Barber:

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Dan Barber 

As a chef in New York, Dan inspires his customers by creating great unique dishes that utilize every part of any plant or vegetable he uses. As a chef, he strives to create delicious food that are grown locally and allow customers to enjoy meals that were made from uncommon fruits, veggies and grains.

Entrepreneur and activist Tristram Stuart:

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I’m not eating carbs this week, but that smile can convince me otherwise. Tristram Stuart, founder of Toast-Ale, is extremest attractive has taken all of the unwanted pieces of bread to make an unlikely product: beer. His company Toast Ale, aims to eliminate bread waste into a tasty new product for all to enjoy.

This documentary was the prime example of innovation. I was inspired, captivated by the creativity of one of the most amazing chefs around the world. I thought to myself, how could I eliminate food waste in my own life. Here are three tips to eliminate food waste in your life:

1. Eat Ugly Produce

Many foods are wasted at the store merely because they don’t look perfect on the shelf. In reality, they have the same great taste. I’ve made it a mission to pick to ugly bell pepper or that apple with a slight bruise. We all have imperfections, even our foods and it’s time to embrace it because it’s all delicious 🙂

2. Connect with Food

Although we all may not have a chance to grow our own food, we can choose to buy locally from the communities around us. 🙂

3. Cook more! (maybe with an attractive Sous-Chef)

Fuel your creative spirit or propose a fun date night in! Whatever the dish, cooking more will allow you to experiment with new dishes guaranteed to use all of your new, fresh and healthy resources!

 


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Why we should all live life on Temptation Island

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Usually I try to obtain from reality TV, but I have been sucked into yet another show that has singles ages 21 to 35 looking for love on a lost island in the middle of the ocean.

These shows typically have the same layout: 20 single girls, 20 single guys. It is a battle of the sexes. A colorful cocktail of single young men and women willing to showcase every moment of their love life. Or “love” life.

Temptation Island adds a surprising twist. The show brings 4 couples to an Island in Hawaii, each with a unique problem in their relationship. The girls and guys separate into two villas where they are welcomed by a group of the opposite sex all looking for love.

At first I thought that it was just a regular dating show. But the fact that the couples are going through the experience together adds a spicy twist. At the end of their journey, the couples reunite and have three options: leave the island together, leave the island alone or leave with someone else.

Temptation Island is already in their second season. But it is not finished. However, I am IN LOVE with the first season. I even had time to rewatched the first season. . . it’s just that good.

There are four amazing couples, but one in particular is what made Season 1 extra spicy.

Kaci and Evan

Kaci and Evan dated on and off for ten years. They both entered Temptation Island looking to engage in the entire experience: date new people, act like they are single and decide if they are truly meant for each other. They both knew that it would be difficult to resist temptation but little did they know it would be even harder to resist falling in love.

This is what happened to Evan. After just one month on the Island and 6 months later, he proposed to Morgan, one of the singles he met on the island.

Evan and Morgan–> this is the link to their Youtube Channel!

The UGLY TRUTH

Home girl Kaci was shooketh. And I was too. To be honest this is what the show was meant for. I know what you’re thinking: maybe I need to sign up for temptation Island. But the truth is . . .

EVERY DAY IS TEMPTATION ISLAND!

Think about it. There are couples everyday, faced with singles who are looking for love. Sure it may not be as cut throat or in an isolated island environment. However, we all have the opportunity to create a life and relationship we want, whether or not it is on reality TV.

Here are three ways we can all live life as if we were on temptation Island.

1.SAY YES

The singles on the Island had the opportunity to say yes. Yes to hanging out. Yes to dates. Yes to enjoying each other’s presence. However, in the real world life gets in the way. We have exams, meetings, conferences, travel. We are busy. But if we said yes more often? Yes to the birthday party, wedding, book club invitation, or dinner invite. This will lead us to more opportunities to create lasting friendships or even relationships.

2. Make unsocial activities social.

How many times do we decide to “work from home” or even workout at home. BORING. How are we expected to find our “Morgan” or “Evan” when we spend a majority of our time at home, sitting in front of a screen?! Yes you.

I challenge you to go to a gym class, or a coffee shop to do work. . Let’s get out there, and get busy.

3. Live Life in Abundance

The reason Temptation Island worked so well is because you had four guys in a relationship presented with 20 singles eager to meet them. In their mind they are thinking “wow look at all these options.” I think this fostered them to want to build a connection with other people, unafraid. If we all acted like we were on Temptation Island and felt like there was an abundance of people waiting to meet us, I think we would be more open to developing opportunities.

Final thoughts…

Not bad for a reality tv show. To my surprise, it is a hit. I loved this show and you should too. The process is not designed for couples to learn about their relationships. It is more about learning about themselves.

On the surface, it appears to be another show about singles on some uncharted island. But, it teaches you important life lessons about relationships, self development and confidence.

Let’s go out into the world today living on Temptation Island because let’s face it, temptation, life, and love are everywhere.

Life’s Inverse Relationships: A Review of “The Social Network”

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The movie The Social Network, written by Aaron Sorkin attempts to portray the story of Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg. Before becoming the face of data privacy, Mark Zuckerberg was a student at Harvard University who developed one of the greatest inventions of all time: Facebook.

As always, I’d first like to start off my admiring the case. Let’s be honest, the casting director deserves a round of applause. I re-watched this movie for the second time and I forgot how many hotties they casted: Jessie Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Armie Hammer, and let’s not forget Justin Timberlake.

This has nothing to do with the cinematic content or value of the film. But, I have a confession. I kind of have a weird obsession crush on Jessie Eisenberg…. I know, I know. But he’s hot. Disagree? I don’t care. HE PLAYS A HOT NERD PEOPLE. For a girl who is on her way to getting her third degree, his character is the best thing since sliced bread. Wait, I’m not eating carbs this week… either way, more for me 😛

ugh, I had to! Maybe I should stop having so many celebrity crushes. Nah, it’s too fun.

ANYWAY

Let’s talk about the actual movie for a hot sec. A couple of observations:

Don’t get me wrong, ultimately I loved the dialogue. However, I felt like I had to watch the opening dialogue between Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg) and Erica Albright (Rooney Mara) like 30 times just to understand what they were saying. It was one of the moments where I didn’t know if they were speaking English or trying to sound intellectual. Sorkin’s writing embodies a certain level of sophistication. But it is hard to believe that anyone talks like this in real life. Correction, no one talks like this in real life. Overall, the dialogue is corky, unconventional, and surprisingly makes you laugh at times where you feel like you shouldn’t. In other words, it grows on you.

Although Mark Zuckerberg may be the reason your mom posts embarrassing photos of you online, The Social Network describes a deeper inverse relationship that we experience in our lives.

One of my favorite writers is Mark Manson. In his article Why the Best Things in Life Are All Backwards he says,

“Most activities in life do not operate along the linear effort/reward curve because most activities in life are not basic nor mindless. Most activities are complex, mentally and/or emotionally taxing, and require adaptation.

Friendships operate on a diminishing returns curve. Having one friend is vital. Having two is clearly better than one. But having 10 instead of 9 changes little in your life. And having 21 instead of 20 just makes remembering people’s names that much more difficult.”

– Mark Manson

This movie may seem like “yesterday’s news” but there is more than meets the eye. In the film Eduardo Saverin ( Andrew Garfield) gives Zuckerberg money to fund the initial operations of Facebook. Even though Saverin invested the first $1,000 he becomes father removed from Facebook’s development. He ultimately sues the company and settles for an undisclosed amount shortly after.

I don’t think this movie was created to see whether Mark Zuckerberg acted in accordance with his character in the movie. That is another issue. He created one of the greatest inventions of all time. If anyone were to be the CEO of one of the greatest inventions of all-time, you’re going to need more than intelligence. A person of that caliber has an atypical combination of courage, wit and a strong sense of what they want to be in this world.

Despite the movie cutting back and forth between two separate lawsuits, the color palette in this film was warm and inviting. The movie often used grey undertones tones with a hint of the “Facebook” blue. The city of Boston also functions as a perfect backdrop for this corky coming-of-age story.

Overall, this movie was far beyond its time. When Zuckerberg created a social network, his invention developed a platform to build digital connections. But as we strive to “connect” through social media, our relationships become less intimate overtime.

Is this the price we pay for innovation? Exchanging genuine friendships for popularity?

. . .

Law and Entertainment: Title VII

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Hi everyone! I’m back with another update in law and entertainment.

On October 8th the Supreme Court addressed whether a Title VII prohibits discrimination against transgender employee Aimee Stephens.  

Here’s the rundown: Aimee Stephens was fired from her position at Harris Funeral Homes, Inc. because of her transition from male to female. Title VII prohibits discrimination “on the basis of sex.” It is now up to the Supreme Court to decide whether the word “sex” in the statute was intended to cover transgender individuals.

            David Cole, attorney on behalf Aimee Stephens, argued Stephens was discriminated against on the basis of sex for three reasons. The employer terminated Stephens for failing to conform to the owner’s explicit stereotypes about how men and women behave. Moreover, Cole argued Stephens was fired strictly because she changed her sex and identified contrary to the sex she was assigned at birth. Anticipating questions from the justices, Cole articulates that “none of these arguments ask the Court to redefine or, in Judge Posner’s words, update sex.” Rather, “ sex means at a minimum sex assigned at birth based on visible anatomy of biological sex.”                 

If you are reading and your face is like this. Don’t worry you are not alone. These arguments are highly intricate. BUT ISN’T IT SUPER COOL!?!?!

            Chief Justice Roberts’ question persisted throughout the argument.  He asks how courts should analyze these policies. Should justices analyze Title VII examining individuals of transgender status or “do you analyze it on the basis of biological sex?”

Cole quickly responds to Chief Justice Roberts asserting the argument rests on biological sex, or to be more accurate, the sex assigned at birth. Still, failing to answer the root of Chief Justice Roberts’ questions, the other justices join to provide clarification. Justice Sotomayor asked, “if a transgender person wanted to use the women’s bathroom . . . but other women were uncomfortable, what law guides judges in balancing these scenarios?” This question addressed possible mass social upheaval that may result from this decision.

            Cole advocates for his client using his strongest argument, “At the end of the day, the objection to someone for being transgender is the ultimate sex stereotype. It is saying, I object to you because you fail to conform to this stereotype: the stereotype that if you are assigned a male sex at birth, you must live and identify for your entire life as a man. That is a true generalization for most of us, but it is not true for 1.5 million transgender Americans. To say we’re going to fire you because you fail to accord to a generalization about how people who are assigned a particular sex based on visible anatomy at birth have to live for the rest of their lives is sex discrimination.”

            Cole continues when he presents another example. “If an employer wanted to know an employee’s gender he or she were assigned to at birth and fired any employee that failed to conform to their assigned sex at birth, this is discrimination on the basis of biological sex.” Still, Justice Kagan recognizes the ultimate dispute among the parties: whether Stephens was fired for violating the dress code or because of her status as a transgender woman. Justice Gorsuch joins the conversation asking whether Cole’s argument is one of judicial or legislative response. Cole asserts that this question is not an issue of policy but judicial review.  

            John Bursch, an attorney arguing on behalf of the Harris Funeral Homes, Inc., disagrees. He argued that sex and transgender status are two independent concepts. Bursch’s begins his arguments in a rapid-fire fashion. However, Justice Breyer interrupts what he calls, “the parade of horrible argument” with some insight.  

As Justice Breyer informs Bursch that the question in this case is not whether an employee is contrary to an employers Bona Fide Occupational Qualifications (BFOQs) or whether comparative harm  exists when sex specific policies are implemented. Rather, Justice Breyer tells Bursch that the only question in this case is whether this case is discrimination on the basis of sex, outlined in Title VII. Forced to redirect his reasoning, Bursch attempts to dismantle the other side’s argument asserting that Cole’s comparison of a transgender employee to a non-transgender employee applies a different classification to the Title VII statue that Congress had not added. 

            Under the questioning of the justices, Bursch stumbles to build an argument. However, he returns to the core, stating that sexual orientation and gender do not fit under the 1964 statutory language of Title VII. He further explained that if the federal courts were to “redefine the meaning of sex in federal law… it would allow biological men to identify as women and take on women’s place in sports teams.” Withstanding active questioning Bursch is able to conclude his argument in a timely manner. 

            In rebuttal Cole re-emphasizes that the power of this decision lies judicial review rather than legislative redrafting. This argument highlights that interpretation of “sex” has a delicate balance. The justices appear inquisitive yet divided. However, this argument reveals that the justices will make an honorable attempt to abide by text of Title VII. 

This case is sure to transform the way courts interpret gender and its application in discrimination cases. I can’t help but think about how this would impact the entertainment industry particularly when it comes to casting calls requesting women and men of certain ages.

Surely this will be a ground breaking decision and please feel free to share your thoughts.

Until next time, “be well, do good work, and keep in touch.” -Garrison Keillor