The Tipping Point


I recently started touring colleges this spring and so far, I’ve toured five. Before my first tour, I didn’t have a lot of questions. Most of my questions could be answered by looking at a college’s website. What could I actually ask during a college tour that couldn’t be found online?

College websites are full to the brim of information about majors and costs, but they rarely have any vital information about dorms. If you’re planning on living on campus like myself, knowing everything about where you’re going to spend your next four years of your life is important. Below I’ve complied questions to ask about dorms and other questions that you rarely find on college websites.


  • Are you allowed to have a microwave in your dorm?

    • Some colleges don’t allow personal microwaves, but rather have one for the floor to share in the lobby.

  • Do you have to bring your own fridge?

    • Sometimes colleges provide you with a mini fridge and sometimes they don’t.


  • Is there air conditioning?

    • Surprisingly, some dorms only have heat.

  • Can you bring your own air conditioning?

    • Sometimes air conditioners aren’t permitted because they’re an electrical hazard.


  • How many people are you expected to share the bathroom with?

    • Sometimes you have a provide bathroom you share with your roommate and sometimes you share a bathroom with the whole floor.

  • Can you look at the bathroom?

    • I’ve been on tours where you have to ask to see the bathrooms and sometimes I’ve been told no.


  • Is the laundry free?

    • Four out of the five colleges I’ve toured have free laundry, but one you have to pay.

  • Is the laundry in the dorm building?

    • Some colleges have the laundry in one building that you have to walk to.


  • Do you have to pay for printing?

    • Some colleges have completely free printing and some have a certain amount per semester.

  • How many printers are there?

    • One college I went to I rarely saw a printer and then others had printers in every building.

Overall, visiting colleges is a fun experience, but having questions prepared is important. College tour guides don’t always cover everything and they expect questions. So don’t be afraid to ask because it could be important later on.

- Contributing Writer -

Mackenzie Hill


The moment after you get your permit as a teenager, you start thinking about the inevitable driving test you can take six months from then. You ask your friends and others who have already survived the dreaded driver’s test what the hardest part is and the answer is pretty much unanimous. Parallel parking is every teenager’s nightmare, but it’s necessary to learn in order to pass the test. Below I’ve compiled tips to help make parallel parking a little less intimidating.

  • It’s better to have too much space than not enough. It’s recommended you have the amount of space equal to one and half of the length of your car.

  • First, position your bumper with the bumper of the car ahead of you.

  • Turn your wheel all the way.

  • Put your car in reverse and back up. Stop when the corner of the car behind you appears in the center of your rear view window.

  • Next, straighten your wheel and back up. Stop the car once you’re sure you won’t hit the car ahead of you.

  • Turn your wheel as far away from the curb as possible and back up again.

  • Finally, park the car when you’re aligned with the curb.

Congrats! If the tips worked and the stress didn’t get to you, you just successfully parallel parked. Now that the hardest part of the driver’s test is out of the way, passing it should be no problem.

- Contributing Writer -

Mackenzie Hill

Freckle Frenzy 

As a person with freckles I find myself struggling with wearing makeup on a everyday basis. Do I put makeup on and cover up my freckles? Or do I leave it off and show all my pimples, dark spots, acne scars, and blackheads? I feel as if I'm always ripping away my freckles when I am using foundation. Do you have the same feelings as I do? The uncertainty of not knowing how to apply makeup? Here are some tips and tricks for applying makeup with freckles.


  • Choosing the right foundation is everything

    • Choose a lighter foundation, or a tinted moisturizer for more coverage. “The key to wearing foundation when you have freckles is choosing one that creates a sheer veil over the skin. Anything with too much opacity will make freckles appear muddy” stated Michelle Clark from MAC Cosmetics’.

  • Illuminate those freckles

    • Using your brow pencil to add a little bit to our freckles can really make them shine. It will add subtitle depth and make your face look sun-kissed and healthy. Be careful not to press too hard when you add it, or else it will make it look unrealistic.

  • Slowwww down on the bronzer

    • It is okay to use bronzer when you have freckles but make sure it's not too much. By using a big fluffy soft brush to sweep the bronzer, it will highlight your freckles without a doubt. Michelle says “start by warming up the high planes of the face, where sun would hit: cheekbones, temples, bridge of the nose ad a dab on the chin.”

  • Concealer is your friend

    • Spot correcting instead of covering will really make your freckles pop! It is the best way you can keep your real skin but hide away those harsh blemishes.

                                                                                                                       Featured Writer
                                                                                                                    ~Kersten Nageotte~



When winter rolls around many old habits come rolling in as well. Such as; using more technology, not working out as much, eating more food at night time or throughout the day and much more. But if you set good and healthy habits as a teenager you will be less likely to have to worry about them the older you get.


  1. Getting regular physical activity can really help. Don’t look up on Pinterest easy workouts, because all you will do is get tired and give up. All you need to do is go on a 60 minute daily walk or jog.

  2. Sweets, everyone’s favorite thing to eat. But you don’t realize how much they can harm you. Cutting back on pop, coffee, or gum can really help in many ways.

  3. Get some grains in you. Whole-grain foods give your body the amount of fuel that can help you get the

  4. Water, water, water. Hydrating in key in keeping that metabolism pumping. Spice it up with some sour lemon or tantalizing raspberries.

  5. Focus on the main food groups. It can really simplify a harder than typical task like eating well.


When it can get easy to get caught up in bad eating habits, remember that it is never too late to teach an old dog new tricks (especially since we are not too old yet)! Focus on positive eating habits now, and later it won’t be an issue!



Confidence is something everyone strives for, but many can’t say they absolutely have it. Sometimes confidence isn’t as simple as reminding yourself to be confident. Below are tips I’ve accumulated to break down the complexity of confidence and hopefully help other teens achieve and keep it with them as adults.

How you talk is important

  • Be clear. Whenever you talk, remember to speak clearly and get your point across without unnecessary rambling.

  • Greet people. Say hello to everyone you make eye contact with and don’t shy away from a simple greeting.

  • Speak positively. When talking about yourself, keep the topic positive.


Appearance says a lot

  • Smile often. Smiling is proven to make you feel better and it makes you more approachable to your peers.

  • Eye contact. When you first meet someone, make eye contact and maintain this habit during any future conversations with this person.

  • Clothes matter. If you’re happy with your outfit, you’ll be more comfortable in your skin.


Take care of yourself

  • Exercise more. Exercising can boost your self-esteem, which can in turn add to your growing confidence.

  • Stand-up always. Don’t let others belittle you and stand-up for yourself whenever necessary.

  • Don’t procrastinate. Confidence grows from accomplishments and procrastination puts your potential accomplishments at jeopardy.

For more tips visit:

- Contributing Writer -

Mackenzie Hill

Learning a Language

Whether you’re currently learning a language or aspire to do so, there are many benefits to learning a new language. Even though we live in a lingually-homogeneous region, learning a new language gives us a challenge and is an impressive skill akin to learning to play an instrument. Some of us students have trouble fitting a language class into our schedule, and even four years of learning a language in high school may not be adequate for some people. According to, it takes around 480-720 hours of learning to truly become fluent in a language. To expedite the lengthy learning process, you may want to implement the following tips.


Talk to someone who knows the language


Have a conversation with someone who is fluent in the language as it will help you to understand the different complexities of a language you can’t learn by the book. It also helps you to remember different words better than simply studying them. Speak to students or users of the language nearby or have a video chat with a speaker of the language you want to learn.


Watch movies, tv shows, and other forms of media in a different language


This makes learning a new language fun. You get to watch a movie and learn language at the same time. It helps if you already know the language or can get English subtitles to the movie. Youtube offers subtitles in English to a variety of videos in foreign languages.


Get tutoring


One-on-one tutoring is the quickest way to learn a language. You get to have the conversations that are so effective by a professional that will guide you through the process of learning a new language with teaching experience. This combines two methods of learning to reduce the amount of time it will take.


Hurry up


Humans are born with the natural ability to learn a language quickly. This ability diminishes over time however, it’s never too late to learn a language. Just know that the longer you wait the harder it will get.

-Contributing Author

Matthew Niedbala

Tips for staying warm in the upcoming winter.  


As the cold weather approaches, many people run for the sun, many ending up in  Florida. But for the people who have to stay around here in cold frigid Pennsylvania, here are some useful and surprising tips to stay warm.


  • It’s a lot faster to make your body warm instead of trying to make a room warmer, so bundle up your toes and ears to keep the rest of your body warm.


  • Eating healthy fats can keep your body warm as well. Eating healthy foods can make your metabolism faster too.


  • Surprisingly, if you turn on your ceiling fan, it will circulate the warm heat down to the floor, which will inturn make you warmer.


  • Put blankets under your doors to keep in the heat. If you really want to be super warm, grab a space heater and put it in your room to keep it really toasty.


  • The heavier your curtains, the warmer your room. Even though you may not be able to feel a breeze coming from your windows, little bits of cold air slowly come into your room. So cover up your windows just as much as you cover up yourself.


  • Baking can really warm up your house. Not only can you get ready for cookie season, but you can keep your house warm as well. So turn up the oven and throw in some cookies.


  • If you are really cold at night, make sure you start with a big fluffy blankets to the thin smaller blankets. It will not only keep you warm but it will feel really nice.


  • While taking a shower, switch from hot showers to cooler showers. Although hot showers keep you warm and toasty for 5 or 10 minutes, it will just make you colder in the long run. If you take cooler showers, it will improve your blood circulation in your body and keep you warmer throughout the day.


  • Even with all of those tips, the most important one is bundling up big jackets, big pants, and a big smile.


Most importantly stay safe this winter Maplewood; roads can become very icy so make sure you drive safely and be responsible.

                                                         Featured Writer
                                                                                                              ~Kersten Nageotte~




The process of training an elite K9 starts from the time he or she are born. From birth, puppies are put through nerve stimulation including holding the puppies in different positions to create a small amount of stress so they learn from a young age how to deal with uncomfortable situations in an appropriate manner. Once the puppies are completely independent and no longer rely on their mother, more intense training begins. Puppies are taken to different locations with different people; this is done to insure the dogs are able to perform in any and all situations. 
    In addition to this environmental training, from a young age, puppies have access to toys which includes anything from tennis balls to a towel, anything the puppy enjoys playing with. Since the puppies are exposed to toys from such a young age, by the time they reach four or five months of age, they develop a strong association with the toy. When they think of their toy, they associate having fun; this association is what drives K9’s. With this being said, high-energy driven dogs are the most successful, while slow moving dogs with low drive are nearly impossible to train. 
    The next step in training is to begin hiding the toy or object. Because these dogs have such an attachment to their toy, they are extremely motivated to find it. These hides should start out fairly easy and gradually get harder with age and understanding. Between 8 and 9 months, the average dogs becomes advanced at this ‘game’. By this time dogs are ready for the next step of training. 
    The next step deals with further association in the dog’s brain. Now instead of just hiding their toy, you now hide the toy with another sent (drugs or explosives). Now, when the dog sniffs and locates their toy, they are also smelling drugs or explosives. 
Obedience is then put on the dogs; this can be a very long and stressful stage for the dog and handler. Obedience includes sit, give, and lay down; all very important commands. In most cases, trainers use commands in the language of where the dogs came from.
    K9’s are then taught to ‘sit on dope’ which basically means when they accurately locate the scent, they are taught to sit in order to get the reward.The final step in training includes removing the toy from the hides. The association between the smell of their toy and the scent of the drugs or explosives should now be strong enough in the canine’s mind to produce the same reaction as if the toy were still there, in this case sitting at the location. Once the K9 sits in the correct location, having properly located the scent, they are then ‘paid’. Paying the dog involves the dog receiving their toy at the exact location where the drugs are located. This process is repeated until they fully understand what is expected of them and how to efficiently work in the appropriate manner. 
     As readers can see, this is a very long and extensive process. Trainers must be willing to think outside of the box and realize that not every dog is the same and different dogs may require special and unique training. This process can take anywhere from ten months to two years. Trainers must be patient and understanding with their dogs. In end, it takes dedication from not only the trainers but also the dogs. 

Contributing Writer 
Alma Danielle Richardson



Many teens and adults are aware of the dangers in driving motor vehicles but daily, choose not to buckle up. Time and time again it’s been proven: a seatbelt can save a life. So what stops you from buckling up?
The Department of Transportation and the world’s automakers persuaded 88.5% of people to fasten their seatbelts which leaves 11.5% who don’t. This translates into about 25 million people, drivers and passengers, who choose not to buckle up. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety administration, 15 thousand lives are saved each year all thanks to a seatbelt.
Seat belts prevent many injuries and even fatalities. By wearing a seatbelt, you increase your chance of survival if present in a motor vehicle accident.
Seat belts benefit you in five main ways:

  • Keeps occupants inside the vehicle
  • Restrains the strongest parts of the body
  • Spreads out any force from collision
  • Helps the body to slow down
  • Protects your brain and spinal cord

The life saved could be yours. Someone loves you; the highway doesn’t care if you make it home but that person does. Free yourself from any distractions when operating a vehicle, keep yourself safe and all your passengers. Driving requires your full attention and nothing less. Remember, Click it or Ticket.


Teens today are stressed and it’s easy to see why. Juggling school, extracurriculars, and the pressure of getting into the right college can be a lot. According to a survey administered by the American Psychological Association, 45 percent of teens report having school related stress. Most teens don’t take the time to address their stress; instead they’re too focused on their academic success and are ignoring their mental health. Stress might seem overwhelming, but sometimes it can be solved by simple tips and tricks.

Sleep is Key

  • According to, teens should be getting nine hours of sleep.
  • Power naps, and napping in general, can help boost teens’ energy and reduce stress.

Try Yoga

  • Practicing yoga before bed can reduce your body’s tension and help with a better night’s sleep.
  • Yoga combines both mental and physical practices, which can help reduce stress in both areas.
  • Continued yoga sessions can build resilience to stress.

Benefits of Music

  • Classical music assists you when studying.
  • Upbeat music helps wake you up.
  • Slow melodies can help you relax.

Unconventional Stress Relievers

  • Watch aquarium fish to slow down your brain.
  • Stay in your pajamas a full day to replicate a mini vacation.
  • Small amounts of chocolate can also be beneficial.

    To learn more about stress and be able to identify the warning signs visit the American Psychological Association’s website:

~Contributing Writer~
     Mackenzie Hill


Two high school girls smiling


“Happiness”, a word that can mean nothing to some of the kids at our beloved Maplewood. So many people are depressed or hate themselves or are just plain sad. These are the people you see everyday, who walk around in the halls, who have the same classes with you, who laugh the same laughs as you. But you really don’t know how much they are hurting inside. But what some people don’t understand is that they aren’t depressed or sad they just don’t know how to be happy. One of the biggest issues in depression is that people don’t know how to forgive themselves. If you want to be happy you have to be happy in your own body, you need to love yourself for as beautiful as you are. But if you are beating yourself up over something you will never forgive yourself. Taking toxic people out of your life is a big step to being happy. The more joyful and happy people are around you the happier you will be. But if you surround yourself with people who beat you up and tear you down, you will always do the same to yourself when they aren’t around.  If you engage in doing one nice thing for yourself every day will ultimately be happier. In the beginning it may seem like a chore but eventually it will just come naturally. Get some vitamin-D, sunshine helps you become happier. People who work in darker places tend to be more run down or depressed, so go outside and get some sunlight. I know this won’t cure anything but if it can maybe help you get through a day then it was worth it. 

         Featured Writer
          ~Kersten Nageotte~  


Many people on a daily basis do not like their school day. There are many different reasons as to why this is. They don't finish their homework the night before, everyone is making them mad, family problems, or they just don't like school. Here are some helpful tips to make your day at least 10% better. 
  Make sure you get a good night's sleep.  Eat a healthy breakfast. If you don't have time for breakfast in the morning, set out some fruit the night before and grab it on your way to the bus.  Be sure to drink lots of water throughout the day and a glass before bed
​  Drinking water can not only help your daily mood, but it can also help your physical performance in sports. Keep a smile on your face all day. Even if you are sad, smile because it will make you happier. Try to make new friends. Even though we go to a small school, there is always something that you don't know about someone.  Try to do your homework as soon as you get home so you're not stressing about it before you go to be
   If you are stressed out before you go to sleep, you will not be able to sleep as well as you should be. Put on a radical outfit for the day. Not only will you look good, but you will feel good too!

                                                   Featured Writer
                                                                                                   ~Kersten Nageotte~


     Want to learn a new instrument?

Always wanted to learn how to play an instrument but thought it would be to hard? It may not be as hard as you have previously anticipated. While learning a new instrument can be quite challenging, there are some instruments that have a lower degree of difficulty and can be learned in a shorter period of time.

     “It’s hard to frown when ukulele music is going down”. The UKULELE is known by many to be the easiest instrument to learn. Having only four strings, uke chords are extremely easy to memorize. In addition to its simple string structure the uke is also very small and easy to handle the standard/soprano being only 20 inches or 51 cm in length. Although the ukulele is simple in design and can be easily learned, this is not to say that the music made with this instrument is simplistic; the more advanced you become, the more intricate the sound becomes.

     “The harmonica is the most voice-like instrument, you can make it wail, feel happy, or cry. Its like singing the blues without words.”-Charlie Musselwhite. The harmonica also known as the “blues harp” is a great instrument for people with little musical background. Furthermore, you don't need to know a whole lot to be able to play the harmonica, and it's hard to sound bad. In addition, you don't need to slim fast moving fingers, all you need to some strong breath. Yet another great thing about the harmonica is its small size the average being only 6 inches long, you can take your harmonica practically everywhere with you.

     “The piano keys are black and white, but they sound like a million colors in your mind.”Maria Cristina Mena. Although the piano may seem complicated, in its purest form it is indeed very simple; you press certain keys in order to produce the desired sound. Unlike most instruments you can’t be out of tune while playing (as long is the piano itself is in tune), while you are able to play the word notes it will never be out of tune. Consider playing the Guitar, if you don't have all your fingers in the right place and are not applying sufficient pressure, the note will be out of tune, this however, is not possible while playing the piano. In conclusion, the piano may take a lot of practice but in the end it creates beautiful music.  




Water makes up 60% of your body making it essential to every aspect of life. With this being said, many people take water for granted. You lose so much of your water due to sweating and urinating, and not keeping the right amount of water in your body can cause you to suffer.You are supposed to be drinking eight ounce glasses of water each day. The less water you drink, the lower your energy levels will be. This will also result in your brain function to be slower. Studies show that the less water women drink the more likely they are to have headaches or migraines. Not only does water boost your brain activity, but it can also help you lose weight. If you drink around 17 ounces, of water a day your metabolism will sky rocket, in turn helping you lose weight. Drinking water a half hour before you eat will help you feel fuller. When you sit down, to eat you are less likely to consume as much food as you normally would. There are other healthy benefits to drinking water including; kidney stones, colon and bladder cancer, as well as help with acne. So remember to try and drink as much water because you never know what it will be helping.

                                                                                                                       Featured Writer
                                                                                                                    ~Kersten Nageotte~




As the school year is almost half way over we as students think about many different things. When will school be over, when is the next sporting event happening, how long until till spring break? But the biggest thing students should be worrying about is grades. Oh doesn’t that word just make your skin crawl, but sadly it is something that students have to take care of if they want to go into higher education, or even graduate high school. But I feel the most bothersome thing is how repetitive all of the tips are for studying. So hopefully I can give you some unconventional tips on getting your grades up and easy ways to study that you have never heard of or just never thought to try.


  1. Get creative with things studying, it shouldn't be a chore.

    • Get a dry erase marker and draw on your windows. The more colors the more interesting it looks. When you are moving around and writing things down you are more likely to remember it, then when sitting down.

  2. Record

    • Recording not only your teachers lecture but your notes too. Listening to your notes that you wrote can help you memorize them faster. When you hear things instead of just writing them down, you can remember the notes a lot better

  3. Teaching

    • By teaching someone the lesson such as your parents or siblings you can learn a lot more. Also if they ask a question you don’t know the answer to, you can both look it up together and get a deeper understanding of the lesson.

  4. Move your surroundings

    • If you study in the same place every time your mind starts to dread even looking at that area. If you switch it up you won’t feel so lousy every time you sit there. Even a change of light can brighten up your mood when it comes to studying.

  5. Rewards

    • If you want to accomplish things but don’t have the drive to do it, give yourself a little treat after you finish something. It would work for anything, after you read one chapter eat a gummy bear. Finish a paper? Eat a chocolate bar.

  6. Breaks!

    • Take a break here and there if you study straight for hours on end it can get really exhausting and unhealthy. I mean come on we are only human give yourself a break.

  7. Exercise

    • Exercising can be helpful in two big ways. It will help you retain more at one time, so you could be gaining more information in less time. It can also help you out when you are taking your test, because the increased blood flow will help you recall easier.


                                                            Featured Writer
                                                                                                                    ~Kersten Nageotte~

cleaned room

How to stay motivated to clean your room!

It’s no secret that teenagers have a tough time cleaning their room. Not to mention keeping it clean after you have already done it once, your parents keep nitpicking at you to get it done, but you just can't seem to find the time or the motivation. Sometimes it feels like running a never ending-cycle. In all actuality all you are doing is putting away a few t-shirts. Thankfully, cleaning your room can be a much easier task.   

  • Make a list

    • Making a list will make you feel more accomplished and will keep you on target for what you are trying to achieve. That may sound boring and repetitive, but you can always spice it up with some glitter pens and funny stickers. (Don't spend more time making the list then cleaning your room!!)

  • Get comfy

    • No one likes to do anything in jeans, so why clean in jeans? Throw comfortable pants and a t-shirt on and go to town.

  • Turn up the tunes

    • A very effective way to stay focused is by playing some music. Plus, it won't feel like such a chore if you are dancing at the same time. If music isn't your thing, you can always listen to a book or a podcast.

  • Perfection isn't always key

    • Not everything has to have an exact place in your room. You can't get caught up on one thing for too long. Only spend about 20 minutes on the big things to make it look better. If the big things are out of the way, it will look a lot better. Remember you aren't cleaning for the president here; it’s okay if not everything looks perfect.

  • Give yourself an incentive

    • If you have a reward to look forward to, it can be a lot easier and more enjoyable for you. The reward can be big or small, such as a candy bar, or a movie you have been dying to watch on Netflix.

  • Small tasks first

    • By putting away clean clothes or dirty ones that are just laying around, it can really open up the room. Place a laundry bin outside your room so you can focus on other things.

  • Keep things going

    • When you come from a long day of school, instead of throwing your clothes on the floor, toss them into a hamper. One of the biggest things you can do to keep your room clean is by putting something away once you are done using it. I know that concept sounds obvious, but it can be overlooked daily and things start to pile up.     

 Featured Writer
~Kersten Nageotte~

Girl's dress in Christmas Attire

Season's Greetings! 

As the holiday season is almost here, there are many things that we think about. Presents, Santa coming, spending time with our family, different faiths, and one of the biggest things is, food. For some people it’s one of the hardest things to do. Not only can it be difficult to get the food because of prices, it can also be a burden for some people because they can't cook very well. There are many different meals that go into a big family Christmas dinner including ham, turkey, gravy, yams, green bean casserole, cranberries, cheesy potatoes, homemade noodles, and many more. This task can be very difficult for many families, not only because of price but because of capability. Here are some tips on how to make a cheap and fabulous dinner.


  • Start out early

    • Coupons, coupons, coupons, they can help you out in so many ways. If you start out early with couponing, you can get so many deals. Which can really help out with prices.

  • No need to go overboard

    • Make sure you know how many people will be there. Extra food means extra money.



    • Stuffing

      • You can freeze stuffing ahead of time and throw it in the oven on the day of Christmas.

    • Potatoes

      • You can peel and cut your potatoes up ahead of time then boil them when you need them.

    • Turkeys

      • Most definitely work on your turkey Christmas eve or the night before you go somewhere. It will make your day feel so much better.

Featured Writer:
Kersten Nageotte

Stay Healthy Sisters 

       One of the biggest struggles that people face during the cold, winter months is staying healthy. With the lack of vitamin D and the excessive amounts of germs being spread, it is nearly impossible to keep your immune system strong and your white blood cells fighting. The lack of sunshine and low temperatures can be very discouraging and it can be easy to let your health slip from your priority list. Here are some tips you can try to keep the cold and flu germs away from you.

  1. Physical health - exercising regularly, eating healthy, and getting enough sleep are crucial when it comes to keeping a healthy immune system. If you are taking care of your body it will take care of you.

  2. Mental Health - You might think that mental health isn't a big deal when it comes to staying away from sickness but you’d be surprised. Taking care if your mind by managing your stress, keeping good relationships with family and friends, and keeping a healthy balance between school, work, and social life will do wonders for staying healthy. Doing these things will take stress off of your body and allow it to focus on staying health.

  3. Emotional health - taking care of your emotions is a large part of keepings colds away. With the lack of sunlight and vitamin D people tend to become grumpy and irritable during these winter months. Seasonal Depression is a real disorder that people are burdened with. It causes depression, anxiety, excessive tiredness, loss of self- esteem, loss of appetite, weight loss or gain, loss in interest of things you used to like, and any out of character behavior are all signs of Seasonal Depression. If you have any of these symptoms please talk to someone because there are many ways to help with the restricting symptoms. But please remember to not take your anger or irritability out on other people and never be afraid not talk to someone about how you're feeling.


Featured Writer 

- Sophie Varndell -



Breakups are always a difficult thing to go through, but they can be even more challenging when you are in high school. The high school environment can take the pain of a breakup to a whole new level. I say this because, in the real world when you break up you have a life of your own, a job, a house/apartment, friends, and you never have to see your ex again if that is your choice. But in high school you are forced to see that person everyday, in the halls, in the classroom, in the cafeteria, etc., this can make moving on very hard, especially when they start to move on to someone new. If this is the case then you are not only forced to see them everyday but you have to deal with the sight of them moving on to someone you probably know. Everyone has probably gone through this at some point in their lives and here are some tips that will hopefully make the coping easier.

  1. Recognize your feelings instead of pushing them away. Many people try to fight their feelings instead of being honest with themselves about how they feel, this only makes the healing more difficult. It’s normal to be sad, angry, confused about your ex moving on but acknowledging your feelings and working towards moving on is a good first step.
  2. Keep reminding yourself of all the reasons you two aren't together. No matter how much you miss you ex and might want he/she back, remind yourself that there is a reason why you broke up. Remember all of your pet peeves and annoyances they irritated you with, now that’s just something their new partner has to deal with.
  3. NEVER compare yourself to their new partner! You are good enough! Avoid asking yourself, “what does he/she have that I don’t?” Resist the urge to look them up on social media, ask friends about their new relationship, or obsess over if they are happier or not. This will only make moving on harder and make you feel worse. It’s not worth it.
  4. Find activities to distract yourself with. There are so many fun activities that you can do in high school. Dances, sporting events, hanging out with friends,clubs, organizations, etc. Get involved and you’ll start to forget all about your ex’s new lover.
  5. Embrace your own self-love. Use the past relationship as a lesson that in order for anyone else to love you, you have to love yourself first. While getting over this breakup, focus on loving yourself and knowing your own self worth.

    High school breakups are a very challenging thing to go through but with the help if these five tips, maybe it will make the healing process a little bit faster. Just remember that there are plenty of fish in the sea and high school is just a small pond.



It' s that time of year again! Lights, joy, snow, family, carolers, gifts, smiles, and sweet treats! With Santa on his sleigh, be sure to whip up some Christmas cookies the smart way. With the Christmas season upon us, we want to save all the money we can by reducing extra expenses, staying healthy and fit after all the good food the holiday brings, and being aware of anyone who has allergies so they can enjoy sweet treats with the rest of us. With these 3 recipes, everyone's taste buds will melt. 

If you’re on a budget and still need Christmas cookies, these are the perfect round treats to suit your sweet tooth. With only three ingredients, these cookies are affordable, tasty, and efficient!

Cookies on a budget
Peanut Butter cookies 


  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Combine the peanut butter, white sugar and egg. Mix until smooth.
  • Drop spoonfuls of dough onto the prepared baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 6 to 8 minutes. Do not over bake! These cookies are best when they are still soft and just barely brown on the bottoms.

With the winter season, many of us are tucked away inside enjoying the heat with little physical activity. Our calorie intake increases a significant amount during the holidays, so these cookies are the perfect way to enjoy something sweet without the large amount of unnecessary calories! 

60 Calorie Cookies
Snowball Cookies 


  • 2 cups ww pastry or white flour
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 1 cup butter, such as Spectrum or Earth Balance vegan, both of which are non-hydrogenated (I wouldn’t recommend subbing a low-fat spread, as you need the fat for optimum texture and taste)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Combine the buttery spread with the powdered sugar, and beat in a medium bowl or stand mixer. Stir together the flour and nuts in a separate bowl. Then mix all ingredients together to form a dough. Shape into balls, place on a cookie sheet, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes until lightly browned. Ready an extra bowl of powdered sugar, and roll the warm cookies in this bowl to coat. Cool on a wire rack. The recipe makes about 40-50 cookies, depending on how big you roll them.ons 
It’s that time of year for family gatherings and festivities. Just like our finger prints, we’re all different. Which means its very likely that someone in your family is sensitive to allergens. With these cookies, there’s no fear of being allergic just a smile and a sweet treat! 

Ultimate Allergy Friendly Cookies

  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 3 tbsp water
  • ½ cup raisins 50g
  • ½ cup tahini 125g
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 6 tbsp coconut flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder


  • Soak the chia seeds in the first measure of water for 15-20 mins until they start to gel, this creates a chia seed egg replacer
  • Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (360 Fahrenheit)
  • Place the raisins, tahini and water in a food processor, blitz until smooth
  • Add the remaining ingredients including the soaked chia seeds, blitz until combined, the mix will be sticky.
  • Wet your hands and wet a spoon (the moisture will prevent the mixture sticking to your hands).
  • Take tablespoonfuls of the mixture and roll into balls, place on a baking paper lined tray
  • These cookies don't spread while cooking, so use a wet fork to press them down to an appropriate thickness
  • Bake for 8-10 mins (it will depend a little on how much you have squashed the dough)

Contributing Writer

Kamala Widdowson



Even when you are wearing your shorts and tshirts you still have to be worried about the flu season. Our summer has been prolonging this year but you still need to watch out for the flu. Here are some ways to prevent the flu. 

Wear your socks

  • When your feet get cold, that makes all the red blood cells rush to keep you warm.This  in turn makes it so there is nothing to protect the bad viruses already in your nose.

Eat honey

  • Honey has the ability to ease coughing better than any medicine.
  • Putting just a little bit in your tea should do the trick.


  • The more stressful you are, the more likely you are to get sick.

Go work out

  • The more you work out, the stronger your immune system will get.
  • Exercising can also help release stress hormones, which will make you healthier.


  • Your phone carries so many germs. Think about all the different places you put it. Make sure you are disinfecting your phone as well as your hands.  

Drink water

  • Without enough water in your body your body’s immune system will grow weak.

The most important tip is GO GET YOUR FLU SHOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                                Featured Writer
                                                                                                          ~Kersten Nageotte~


School’s started and the last thing on anyone’s mind is the upcoming tests, but they’ll be here before we know it. You’ve bought the highlighters and index cards, but come study time you ditch the supplies and the idea of studying all together. “You’ll wing it,” you assure yourself. Studying is dreaded by every high school student, but maybe that’s because you’re using the wrong methods.

Location Matters!

  • Try changing your scenery. Studying at your desk can become suffocating.
  • Try studying in bed. What you see before you go to bed and when you wake up is easier to remember.
  • Mimicking the location of the test room in your own home is also useful. If your math classroom is cold, study in an air-conditioned space.

Memorization Hacks

  • Laughter helps with retention. You’re more likely to remember something if you recall it with a joke.
  • Age old memorization techniques such as using acronyms and metaphors also help.
  • Even just writing what you’re studying again and again helps.
  • Teaching others or repeating the information out loud to yourself can help with memorization as well.

Trick Your Body

  • Taking a cold shower can wake up your body and boost overall achievement.
  • Studying when tired and going to sleep after is proven to help, too.
  • Omega-3 fatty acids in foods, such as sushi, can increase the effectiveness of studying.
  • Exercising between study sessions can release your body’s tension. It also releases endorphins that will keep you motivated and avoiding the study blues.

Fun Fact:
The Forgetting Curve is a real thing where people forget what they learn in a classroom setting if they don’t take time to go home and review it or read over their notes the next morning. Your brain is more likely to remember information it has seen multiple times than information it’s only processed once.

Contributing Writer-

Mackenzie Hill