By Sarah Smith
I step out into tall grass and look around at the land and all its natives.
A delicate blue butterfly maybe a half an inch-long flutters across my nose,
While The trees are subtly decorated with colorful chameleons.
They are revealed slightly more when the leaves tremble in front of them from the heavy steps of approaching elephant herds.
The surface of the water in a river nearby and the sardines within it shimmer in the sunlight.
Its steady flow and the calm of its wild life are distressed when a frog hops across it.
Further along the river and deep in the jungle I spot a crocodile that stares at me through hungry eyes.
At this point I realize…..
That I have wandered too far from my hotel.
By Simme Salguero
I love sewing and I love fashion! I have always loved fashion starting from age 7. I started loving fashion and sewing when I began watching the show Project Runway. As I watched the show I would say, “I want to be on that T.V. show one day!” I’ve been obsessed with the show ever since!
How I got started with sewing is that my mom signed me up for sewing classes with her friend Leia, who was running small group sewing classes for kids at her house. Throughout my years with Leia we made bags, skirts, headbands, shorts, tunic tops, eye masks, pillowcases, and a ton more things for myself and to give away as gifts. It was always so much fun and a time where I could focus on what I love to do. I usually get my fabrics and supplies at Joann Fabric Craft Store. My favorite fabrics to get are polka dots, chevron, and plane colored fabrics. I usually get some extra things too like zippers, cool colors of thread, beading, and buttons. Also, I always love looking at more expensive fabrics, pretending to be a fashion designer looking for that “perfect” fabric although I haven’t bought that kind of expensive fabric yet.
My top 3 favorite things I’ve sewn have been a summer dress, a fox clutch and a chap- stick holder. I chose the summer dress as a favorite piece because it has the right amount of cuteness and edge. It also has cute little bow ties you tie on your shoulders which I love! The fox clutch is a simple clutch purse with a little fox felt appliqué on it witch makes it super adorable. Lastly, the chap- stick holder is in my top 3 because it is so handy. You can take it anywhere you go because it’s a key-chain style and you can clip on almost anything. You can take it on your purse, backpack, or suitcase, etc.
Have you ever sewn things like this before? Sewing is so much fun and a creative way to express yourself! If you love fashion and love to work with your hands, you should start sewing today!
My name is Aly Chronister, I’m a senior and I live in Sand Springs, Oklahoma.
On March 24, 2018 I participated in March For Our Lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma. I marched for my uncle’s son who passed away due to gun violence in 2009 and for my two brothers to feel safe in school. I have a 13 year old brother who is autistic and he is in seventh grade, and my other brother is only nine months old, I want them both to grow up in a world without fear of gun violence.
I’m 17 and I will be turning 18 in June so I registered to vote at the march, I’ve never felt more powerful. At the march I saw a lot of teenagers with very strong voices and opinions, adults who were telling us how amazing we were and how they will always stand behind us, and young children with signs that broke your heart.
One little boy’s sign said “It’s my birthday today, make sure I get another!”
I also met a nine year old girl who made her own shirt, it said “guns are dumb,” she talked to me about gun violence and Donald Trump through over half of the march. She made me have hope in our next generation to continue our fight for gun control. She was very intelligent, sweet, and very mature for her age, I will truly never forget her for as long as I live.
The march affected me by letting me express myself, my opinions, and letting me use my voice to stand up for what I believe in. Gun control has been important to me since Sandy Hook, when a gunman killed 20 children and 6 adults. This topic should have went through in 2012 when this tragedy happened. Now, here we are 6 years later, on February 14, 2018 and a gunman took town 14 children and 3 adults.
The students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida organized all these marches and I’m so proud of them. I’m proud of myself and all of the other students, children, and adults who are standing for gun control. I’m going to stand for gun control until I take my last breath, I will never give up on this fight because I’m tired of seeing children fear for their lives. This march has forever altered my life and our voices will just get louder and stronger as time goes on. I love all of the people I’ve met on this experience and we’re just getting started. It is truly a life changing, unforgettable experience that I will cherish for the rest of time.
How to brighten someone’s day with just a couple words on a gift bag
By Sarah Smith
I’m here with Ashley, Kaitlyn, and Emily Berger, 14-year-old triplets who create gift bags every year around the holiday time to be delivered to food pantries and senior living centers around Long Island.
So, Ashley, how long have you been doing this and what got you into it?
Ashley: We have been doing this for two years. We are participating in the congressional award and one of its requirements is community service. We went online with the help of our dad to find out places near by that needed help obtaining products and materials that could be used by people in need. We had previous knowledge of our local food pantry where we donated bags of personal hygiene products to help the people there. We also found Paumanack Village, which is section 8 senior housing, and also donated to and helped the people there.
What exactly goes into making each of the bags and how long does it take?
Kaitlyn: The process incudes two trips to the store. For the first trip, we buy toiletries and other small necessities. For the second trip, we buy anything we ran out of the first time and some extra goods. We make about 100 bags, which are filled to the top and end up being the size of a basketball. We spend about four hours total assembling the bags and two hours buying the supplies.
Who makes and donates the bags to these particular places? What makes your bags unique?
Emily: We are the only ones who make these bags. They are unique because we write personal, holiday, or inspirational quotes on them to make it a more personal experience for them.
What impact do you think the personalization has on the recipients?
Ashley: The quotes on the bags really do mean something to them because its more personal and it shows that more effort was put into it. The people are very grateful, regardless of the words on the bags. The kind quotes are just another way to brighten someone’s day and go the extra mile to make them smile.
How does delivering them make you feel?
Emily: It makes me feel good because I know someone in need is really appreciating it. It makes it more fun and personal to hand-deliver them. We get to talk to them for a few minutes and learn about their lives and families. It means a lot to me to hear how much they appreciate the bags and the quotes on them.
What advice do you have for anyone who wants to get involved in charity work?
Kaitlyn: You should start out by researching areas in need near you. Contact them to ask what products they need more of. Kind of like what Ashley said, these small gestures mean the world to those in need.
By Larissa Chelius
The night before the photoshoot
step 1. Pick out a matching outfit.
i. Go with a theme based on the location.
step 2. Plan what you are going to do with your hair.
i. Practice to make sure your hair looks good!
step 3. Find shoes and socks that go together.
i. Try to wear your own style!
step 4. Find jewelry that matches with the color scheme.
i. Mainly silver or gold not many crazy colors (unless that’s your style!)
The day of Photoshoot
step 1. When you get home take off all old makeup.
i. Make sure you wash your face so it can glow!
step 2. Put your hair up in chosen style.
i. Try to look out for the pesky baby hairs!
step 3. Practice smiles and poses in mirror!
i. Make sure you have fun with it!
step 4. Put on outfit and jewelry.
i. Make sure everything works well together.
step 5. Apply your makeup.
i. Try not to wear crazy eyeshadow or too much blush you might ruin your look!
Cover Story interview with Cassidy Ermigotti by Olivia Bush
How did you find out about the Zero Gravity jump rope team?
Zero Gravity was started by members of an old team I was on based in Bucks County. I was with Zero Gravity from the beginning because I had the privilege of my friends actually creating and building the team.
How old were you when you started jump roping?
I was six years old and it was the summer before first grade.
What inspired you to start jump roping?
I started through a summer camp. This then evolved to being on the school team the same year. It just grew from there and I will always tell people I will jump until my legs fall off.
What are the different categories of jump rope?
There are many different categories of jump rope, (over thirteen to be exact). Some categories include double dutch, single rope speed, single rope power, and freestyle routines. There are many categories that branch off from these that are all unique in their own ways. These categories are also judged differently so It is a pretty cool system.
What is your favorite category to perform?
My favorite events are singles freestyle and any double dutch freestyle event, especially in pairs. I also recently started to like triples, which is a category under power that you can start at fifteen.
What is the hardest thing about jump rope?
There isn’t really one specific hard thing about jump rope. There are a bunch of little things that you personally can find hard based in your own stamina and endurance. Personally, I find speed events hard and talking myself into doing new tricks. The mental game can drag you down, so you have to have a new sense of trust with yourself.
Is there anything you dislike about jump rope?
There is nothing that I will ever dislike about jump rope. I may complain time to time about a speed workout, but I will never dislike it because it makes me better, and it feels amazing in the end. I get a big sense of accomplishment at the end of practice, so there will never be any dislikes or regrets that I will associate with jump rope.
What is your favorite part about being able to jump rope for others around the country?
It’s extremely refreshing to share my passion and spread education about fun exercise. It’s great to see the looks on people’s faces, especially kids, when you are jumping double dutch or on a pogo stick. I have also had people call me their hero and ask for my autograph, which is really cool and amazing since I know I touched someone in some way.
What is your favorite routine you have performed?
My favorite competition routine I have ever performed was my singles freestyle last year at the regional competition in Maryland. It is my favorite because I got first place and I had just recovered from an injury, so it was hard to practice and super rewarding after awards. My favorite performance routine was at St Joseph’s two years ago because it was the first performance as Zero Gravity and it was during Christmas, so it was like a miracle to see the crowd get so into our routine.
What are some of the coolest places you have traveled with Zero Gravity?
The coolest place I have been to with Zero Gravity is Disney World in Orlando. It was so cool to experience this for the first time with my closest friends. Also, competing in the ESPN World of Sports complex. It was an experience like no other! The coolest place we have ever performed was at Madison Square Garden. It was so cool because it is such a well-known stadium and is like a dream come true to perform there!
I heard you went to the Junior Olympics, can you tell me more about that?
Yes, I went to the Junior Olympics two years ago in Houston, Texas. It was a great experience as a team since it was our first major competition, and everyone did so well! It was also extremely cool because there were other sports competing in the same building, so we were exposed to more unique sports such as cup stacking. Being there exposed us to the competitive world of other sports like cup stacking, as I mentioned, and sports like cheer and gymnastics.
What was the road you took to get to the Junior Olympics?
The process was long and hard, practice was at least twice a week for three hours each. Also, we went to smaller competitions to prepare ourselves since we had never competed before. In the end it was extremely rewarding, and I wouldn’t change a thing.
What was your favorite part about competing in the Junior Olympics?
My favorite part about competing in the Junior Olympics has got to be the feeling of community and utter support from every team there and especially your own team. This competition really opened me up to the world of competitive jump rope where you can be friends with people from North Carolina, Virginia, and even Australia. It got me used to how a competition worked and that is very valuable going forward.
What other competitions have you competed in?
I have competed in various competitions in Maryland and about three regional competitions. The biggest competition I have ever competed in was last year at nationals in Florida. You must qualify at a regional competition in order to go to nationals or junior Olympics and right now my team is planning to go to nationals again.
Do you keep track of all the states you’ve competed in?
I keep a map of the United States on a shelf in my room and I stick push pins in the states where jump rope has taken me.
What is one of the biggest things you have gotten out of jump rope?
Jump rope has been a great way for me to explore many different places in the United States. I have also gotten to see many colleges and even consider some to apply to in the future.
Congratulations Jillian Cardinal for winning the cover of the Spring 2018 Issue of iTi STYLE!
Today our youngest members share what they love about our leadership programs and advice for new girls.
We continue sharing what the girls like in our leadership programs and will hear from some of our middle school girls today.
"I like the leadership program because you can get to meet new people and make up new programs that you could teach to all the upcoming leaders in your group.
I would recommend this program to other girls because of how fun it can be to make up a program on a topic they like and share it with others.
Push through all the challenging stuff in life and hold your head high.
Don't be shy to express yourself in amazing ways."
We'll be rolling out some of our member's individual responses for why they joined Inspiring Teens and advice that they have for new girls in three blogs based on age group. Today we have our high school girls.
Our programs for our 4th quarter of the '17-18 school year include Leaders (Grades 5-7), Fashionistas (Grades 6-12), Media (Grades 8-12) and Models (Grades 4-12). If one of these sounds like we can help you meet your goals....
Coming into the program, I didn't know what to expect. While getting involved with everything, I instantly fell in love with Inspiring Teens Magazine!
My advice to any new member is to be yourself. You can find amazing people through being who you truly are. Embrace and love yourself and don't be afraid to show off what you've got.
Accept any challenges you may face and never give up! You are beautiful and inspiring and deserve to be here!"
"My advice to any new person joining Inspiring Teens would be to challenge yourself. I found that I could do this best in the Leadership Program working with businesses in the area and sharing my ideas with the group. Voice your opinions, don't be afraid to get in front of the camera, and continue to inspire those around you."
"What I love about the program is wearing different outfits for different photo shoots, meeting new people and making friendships that could last a lifetime.
Advice for new girls: Be confident, be yourself, gain self esteem, believe in yourself, and always have a positive attitude no matter what."
1. How do you balance your time between school and sorority events?
In order to stay in a sorority, you have to maintain a 2.5 gpa, and you earn points for earning A’s and B’s and for going to the library to study. There is a scholarship chair in the sorority which is just in charge of making sure every ones grades are up to par. So it is pretty easy because we mostly know that we have to get are homework done and that our grades come first in order to actively participate.
2. How do you become more involved in your sorority?
Mostly just going to everything and being really involved. Even if you don’t know someone that well text or dm them asking if they want to go to lunch. Go to events and activities and actively participate.
3. How much time commitment is a sorority?
There are mandatory meetings once a week that are normally an hour, and then there are volunteer events, fun activities and socials. I would say around five hours a week.
Questions by Jillian Cardinal
Have you done any?
Yes we have done adopt a block which is when you go into town and clean up the streets, we have also done bake sales, and many diamond donates.
What were your favorite type of volunteer opportunity?
The 5k on Veterans Day and we raised 5 thousand dollars for David’s Drive 831 ,an organization helping homeless & hospitalized veteran’s.
Questions by Ellie Kuhnle
-on bid day we get all social medias and follow everyone . Before social media was big, we’d do cross over the line, where people cross over the line with statements they relate to. Each assignment is fulfilled with someone knew, so you get to know everyone!
What is your favorite activity to do with your sisters?
-a lot of sister hood events, Brittany is sister chair, she sets up event for everyone. Activities like Zumba, pumpkin picking, bowling, & various social events. Ice Cream at the house is common and annual, a movie night is in the planning process. Sisters go out to lunch together and act like “normal friends,” and during finals they all study at the library together.
Have you gained confidence from becoming a sister? If so, how?
-YES! “I’ve seen such a personality difference in myself...” (Brittany) “Almost impossible not to change” (Brittany) Carly plans special events, and Greek weekend (annual) “getting people to come to special events has given me confidence” (Carly) “You have to be outgoing, you have to ask for things” (Brittany) a little weird at first, similar to a job, weekly meetings, etc. positions can last from semesters long to years long.
By Jillian Cardinal
West Chester University is a college in West Chester, PA - which is a really cool town about an hour from our headquarters. We decided if we were going to drive that far, we should do a photo shoot and tour the campus a little.
We first went to some cool stationary trains on dead tracks (that could have something to do with the next issue.. spoiler alert - it's the Travel Issue!) and decided to start our photo shoot there.
We wrapped it up with our interview with a sorority group to learn about how they managed their classwork along with sorority commitments such as volunteering. We also talked about the process of getting in to a sorority group (pledging). *The full interview will be in a second blog coming shortly!
Ambassador program with us!
With the second issue of iTi STYLE coming in next week, we're super excited to be able to share the styles of our younger tween stylists (Officially titled "IT GIRLS: - Inspiring Teens Girls) who love exploring different styles as much as they do!
So if you know of any girls between 4th - 12th grades who fall into this stylish category - please send them our way!
By Jillian Cardinal
Style Wars is a friendly competition that involves going to different stores with fellow Inspiring Teen (or two). The way that it works is that you would have a certain amount of time to pick a store with your team, interview the employees about what is trending and about their store, pick out a stylish outfit, take pictures - and post on social media - all in a HALF HOUR! And then you have your friends and family cast their vote on who put together the better outfit.
You can check this out on our Instagram page. Just search InspiringTeens_Style
We did this in February over President's Weekend when we had off from school. We come from 6 different schools in two counties, so getting together is always fun!
If you want to do this or another fun challenge with us, fill out the form on our JOIN page to get started today!
Style Wars is a part of the model program at Inspiring Teens. Our most recent Style Wars was with Zoe, Brylee and Emma at Monkeys Uncle in Doylestown which is a Philadelphia sports attire store that has all our sports team for both the pros and a lot of the colleges.
Finally Emma and Kimberly were also at the mall but visited Francesca’s which is more of a trendy/casual store. The thing that I like about Francesca’s is how their main goal is not to just sell clothes but to help people find the perfect clothes to fit their bodies to make them feel good about who they are in their own skin.
If you want to do this or another fun challenge with us, fill out the form on our JOIN page to get started today!
Submitted by our members as well as teens across the world.
Many were published in Inspiring Teens Magazine or iTi STYLE Magazine.
Central Bucks School District
Central Bucks South
Central Bucks West
Connie Etter Photography
Council Rock North
Council Rock South
Cynthia Schoettker Photography
Destination Photo Shoot
Green Briar Photography
Krystal Kaye Images
Laura Beth Eikert Bailey
Laura Tusek Of Senior Edge Photography
Leader National Honor Society
Love Girls Magazine
March For Our Lives
Marci & Christy Photography
Maya Jai Pinson
Mean To Me
Nationa Honor Society
National Honor Society President
Pantone Color Of The Year
Philadelphia Teen Filmmaker
Pink Lily Photography
Pink Owl Photography
Portraits With Michelle
Radio Show Host
Sharie Thompson (STories Photography)
Sharon Holy Photography
Special Effects Makeup
Studio Bloom By Shelley
Susan Holloway Scott
Teen Photo Shoot
The Gray Senior
The Moxie Design
Thrift Store Finds
Tra'Varius Tra'Vonn "Tank" Todd
Type 1 Diabetes
University Of Pittsburgh
Upper Dublin High School
Voices Of Teens
West Chester University
Willow Grove Park Mall