Saturday, June 28, 2008

Getting Involved: The 2008 Election

Hey Girl Bloggers!
I’ve noticed a lot of you expressing your concern over the upcoming 2008 presidential election. Issues that seem to be most important to you based on your articles and comments in the Girls Blog include concerns about the environment, gay marriage, civil rights, and the war in Iraq.
Although most of you can’t vote yet it’s still important to be informed about the presidential candidates. You can make a difference in the election by discussing your opinions with those who can vote and influence the election like your parents, older friends and siblings, and teachers. Encourage them to vote on Election Day. Put posters and signs in your house’s yards and windows of the candidate you support. You can write a letter to your hometown newspaper or school newspaper expressing your thoughts on the candidates. If you find a parent or older friend to accompany you, you could even volunteer for one of the candidates by distributing flyers and yard signs around your neighborhood.
To find out more about the Democratic candidate Barack Obama click on this link.
To find out more about the Republican candidate John McCain click on this link.

If you girls have any other ideas about how to become more involved in the election feel free to post a comment!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

All Your Ear Piercing Questions Answered!

Hey Girls! I’ve noticed a lot of you in the New Moon Girls message board have had some questions and comments about ear piercings. Let me give you some information so you know what the dangers are and what to expect!

The most common dangerous side effect of a piercing is bacterial infection. This is when the area around your new piercing turns red and swells and is often very painful! Be sure to clean it regularly with saline solution and soap and water in the shower, or with antibiotics.

Some areas with a lot of cartilage, like the top of your ear, can be much more dangerous to pierce because they can be harder to treat if they get infected. Antibiotics aren’t enough to treat the infection and sometimes the area will develop an abscess ( a collection of pus in the tissue) which then has to be drained by medical professionals. Yikes!

It’s also very important that you go to a well-known piercing parlor where the piercers wear plastic gloves and use sterilized needles. Be sure the place looks clean and make sure the autoclave (the machine that sterilizes needles) is working properly. If it is they should have a current Spore test that shows that the autoclave has been tested and approved. When needles aren’t sterilized infections can be easily transmitted. That’s why it is dangerous to try to pierce yourself or have a friend do it. Also be sure to get a set of aftercare instructions, so you know how to care for your piercing!
Piercings can be expensive too, usually at least fifty dollars, and if you’re not eighteen you need a parent to come to the piercing parlor with you.

Piercings can be fun and exciting, but I recommend waiting till you’re older to know for sure whether you want one or not! If you get a piercing and take it out later, it can sometimes leave an ugly scar! And yes piercings can hurt! Basic ear piercings in your earlobe aren’t too painful, but cartilage can hurt a lot! Also a lot of the time the initial piercing isn’t too bad, but the weeks and even months it can take to heal can be painful.

So be sure you think a long time about whether you really want a piercing, and always ask your parents for permission first! If you have any other questions about piercings or stories to share feel free to post a comment!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Grandma's Marathon Women Champions!

Hey Girl Bloggers! Check out these women’s amazing athletic accomplishments!
For those of you out there from Minnesota you may have heard of the Grandma’s Marathon which takes place in Duluth, Minnesota every summer. If you haven’t heard of it let me explain! Grandma’s, is a 26.2 mile race which has been going on every June for the last 32 years. Every year thousands of runners race off at 7:30 in the morning intent on finishing the course. In addition to Grandma’s, a half marathon called the Gary Bjorkland takes place earlier in the day as well.

Thirty-one year old Mary Akor (pictured on right) was the first woman to cross the finish line this year with a time of 2 hours, 38 minutes, and 50 seconds, and she won the grand prize of ten thousand dollars! She was the previous woman champion from last year’s race as well. Mary is from Nigeria and currently resides in California.
The second place runner, Margaret Toroitich, from Kenya was less than three minutes behind her.

Another champion woman was twenty-four year old Sally Meyerhoff (pictured on left) from Arizona who finished third out of the women. An American born woman hasn’t made the top three finishers since 1998, so this was a big triumph for her as well.

It inspires me to hear of the amazing athletic accomplishments of these women. Running a marathon is such a great triumph! It’s incredible to think of the physical feats your body can accomplish when you put your mind to it! Do any of you girls have dreams of running a marathon someday? What athletic accomplishments are you proud of!?

Friday, June 20, 2008

The Body Project Study~ Promoting Positive Body Image!

Great news girls!
The Body Project Study which started in 2001 and is funded by the National Institute of Health has shown very promising results for young girls. In this project girls realized just how much the media has tried to promote the outrageous ideal that thinness equals happiness.

The girls critiqued this idea through writing and discussing with peers, and they realized that companies are benefiting by encouraging girls to be thin because they then profit from the sales of all the weight loss products out on the market. The girls in the study chose to counter this notion through their own small actions which they called “body activism.” Some of the girls slipped encouraging notes like, “Love your body the way it is” into diet books at bookstores, and some wrote letters to the maker of Barbie dolls, Mattel, and encouraged them to make their Barbie’s bodies more realistically proportioned. Other girls put up notes in their school’s bathrooms telling girls that they are beautiful and should be themselves.

According to the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology the participants in this Study reduced the risk of developing eating disorders by 61 percent! Also the girls continued to have a positive attitude about their body image even after three years of completion of the program. Because of the positive results of this study, sororities and other groups are launching similar programs.

Do you ever feel pressured by the media to be thin? What do you girl bloggers think about this Body Project? Do you think it was worthwhile? How would you feel if your school started a similar program?

Thursday, June 19, 2008

High Heels for Babies!?

A company called Heelarious has recently come out with a new product-miniature high heeled shoes for baby girls up to six months old. They range in colors from hot pink to leopard print and cost thirty five to forty dollars. The company claims they aren’t actually intended for walking and that the shoe is completely soft, so no harm can come to the baby.
However many people are upset by this new fashion trend and claim that high heels take away a baby’s innocence and promote sexuality at far too young an age. They think babies shouldn’t be dressed like teenagers or adult women. Also some people worry that the pointed toe on the shoe could cramp a baby’s growing foot.

On the packaging the slogan “her first high heels is printed.” I personally find this rather disturbing because of all the health problems heels can cause in the future with extended use. High heeled shoes place your feet and legs into unnatural positions and inflame and aggravate your Achilles tendon. Also high heels cause numerous breaks and sprains every year in women’s feet.
Should little girls really be encouraged to wear high heels at such a young age when they can be so dangerous? Although these baby heels aren't actually walked in do they promote high heel use in the future?

What are your thoughts on this girl bloggers? Do you think these heels are a bad idea or just a cute and harmless gift for baby girls? Let’s hear your comments on this new baby fashion style!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Seventeen Magazine's Body Peace Vows Clash with Advertisments

Hey Girl Bloggers!
I just wanted your opinion on something I find very contradictory. Seventeen magazine recently started a “Body Peace Project” to encourage girls to accept their bodies for the way they are and sign a treaty online that lists various body vows such as:
“Know that I’m beautiful just the way I am,” and “Remind myself that what you see isn’t always what you get on TV and in ads-it takes a lot of airbrushing , dieting, money, and work to look like that.”
These are just a couple examples of the dozen vows listed by Seventeen. I think all the vows are great and represent important and positive messages for girls. It’s important to love your body and appreciate it for all the amazing things it does for you everyday! Already over 37,000 girls have signed the treaty!

However I can’t help but feel that Seventeen is sending a conflicting message when most of the other aspects of their magazine, especially their advertisements, feature extremely thin models and celebrities who are most likely on an intense diet or possibly suffering from an eating disorder and have been airbrushed to the extreme. While one of the vows stated by Seventeen says that you should respect your body “by feeding it well” then why don’t these models look like they feed themselves well? Why don’t these ads themselves reinforce the Body Peace vows Seventeen is trying to promote?

Also so many articles in Seventeen seem to focus on ways to change your exterior image through makeovers and shopping trips. The treaty encourages girls not to judge people based on how they look, yet they’re constantly promoting new products to improve your looks. I don’t know about you guys, but I feel frustrated that Seventeen isn’t doing more to endorse the vows they’re encouraging their readers to take. What do you think? Is Seventeen being hypocritical?

If you would like to have a look for yourself at the Body Peace Treaty, just visit this website.
Thanks for reading, and I hope to hear some of your thoughts on this conflicting subject!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Hello New Moon Girls!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Hello Everybody!

My name is Hanna, and I just started interning at New Moon for the summer. I used to be a New Moon subscriber when I was younger, and I loved the poetry, letters, and "Draw Luna" sections, and the stories girls shared in "Howling at the Moon." Now I'm a little too old to subscribe, but I'm so excited to be apart of the blog, something that didn't exist back when I started reading New Moon!

Here's a little information about me! I'm a 21 year old student at the College of St. Benedict in St. Joseph, Minnesota. I love to read, hike, bike, bake and cook, play board games, and go out with my friends for Mexican or Indian food! I'm an English major, and I hope someday to be a high school teacher or maybe even work for a magazine as cool as New Moon! This fall I'll be a senior, so I only have one year of college left. I can't believe how fast time goes! I spent my last semester studying abroad in Ireland. It was an amazing experience, and I highly recommend studying abroad when you're in college. There are so many amazing places you can travel to! Some of my friends went to South Africa, Australia, Chile, Spain, and even India!

I'm really excited to be writing and blogging for New Moon, and I hope all you girls will help me out with ideas and things you're interested in. I'll be blogging a lot for the next few months, and I want to write about things that interest YOU! What are you interested in? The 2008 Election? Music? What's going on with New Moon magazine? Movies and Books? Dream jobs? Girls' and women's accomplishments? Feel free to reply to this post with any questions or ideas. This is all brand new to me, and you probably have more experience than I do blogging, so I'd love some help! I'm looking forward to hearing from you!
P.S. I included a picture of myself at the Cliffs of Moher in Ireland. Have any of you ever seen the movie "The Princess Bride"? These Cliffs are the Cliffs of Insanity featured in the movie!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Get Involved: New Moon Girls Street Team Needs YOU!

Hey girls,

You're an important part of New Moon Girls and we want to invite you to be on the new Street Team that I'm coordinating-take a look at what this is about! At New Moon we want the world to hear from girls, respect girls, and believe in girls' dreams. The Street Team will help more and more girls everywhere use their voices, achieve their dreams, and work together in ways that matter.

Use your voice and spread the word about New Moon Girls magazine and New Moon Girls website! Find out more about what the New Moon Girls Street Team is doing in June and all the fun ways YOU can get involved.

New Moon plans are always based around girls and their ideas so I want to hear from you!

Feel free to e-mail me and with questions and ideas, and I'll send you an application to join and along with other street teamer goodies. Now you can share your love for New Moon while being an ambassador for girls and their dreams!

If you want to join the street team or if you've got thoughts on what Street Teamers could be doing...or even what we should name our street team, give me a shout!