10-Year-Old Disabled Girls Petitions American Girl Doll

A 10 year old girl with muscular dystrophy is petitioning Mattel, the owner of the American Girl Doll brand, to release a disabled American Girl doll. Melissa Shang lives in Paoli, Pa., and suffers from a condition that stops her from running, skating and participating in other physical activities with other girls her age. Melissa explains that she loves American Girl Dolls, partly because they help her “understand how it feels to be someone else.”

Melissa and her sister YingYing are hoping Mattel will now help other girls understand what its like to be disabled.

“For once, I don’t want to be invisible or a side character that the main American Girl has to help,” Melissa states on her petition page. “I want the other girls to know what it’s like to be me, through a disabled American Girl’s story.”

“Disabled girls are American girls too,” Melissa says. “We face challenges and overcome them every day.”

Take Advantage of Seasonal Downtime with Online Exhibits

1914a-item-pageWinter’s gloomy weather can get depressing, and people tend to stay indoors and become less active during this season. However, in many areas, the cold weather opens up opportunities that are often overlooked when the sun is shining. Museums, art shows and traveling exhibits are a great way to stay busy, learn something and stretch your legs without having to spend much time in the rain. Many such museums and foundations also offer online explanations and virtual tours, and interesting displays are only a click away.

The Shapell Manuscript Foundation, for example, recently released 10 new manuscripts from their archives onto their website, including two written by President Millard Fillmore. The University of Delaware Library also received a collection of World War II manuscripts, which are now accessible through their Special Collections web page. Gloomy days are a perfect time to enhance your knowledge of American history, as well as learn about other cultures and traditions throughout time.

You can even enjoy events that are happening in other countries. For example, a new visitor’s center was recently opened at Airman’s Corner, less than two miles from the famous Stonehenge landmark. The facility features ancient construction tools and other artifacts that hint at the lives of Neolithic and Bronze Age peoples.

“At last, visitors to Stonehenge will be able to get a sense of the people who built this monument, of their lives, their deaths and their ceremonies. Visitors will, for the first time, learn the astonishing history of the stones and will see objects, many never seen before, that will bring the stones to life,” explains Dr. Simon Thurley of English Heritage. “Instead of just a stopover or a quick photo opportunity, we want our visitors to step back in time and into the shoes of those who created and used this extraordinary place to marvel at original everyday objects they used, to talk the surrounding landscape as they did, and to sit in the dwellings that they would have built. It makes the real encounter with the stones themselves so much more exciting.”


Dress for Success: Interview Tips & Ideas

interviewsMany people don’t realize how important the first impression is. This is particularly true for college students and for low income people who are job hunting. It’s possible that the interviewee doesn’t even have access to the tools needed to make a good impression. This is why many organizations and companies will have information sessions to teach college students and low income populations about successful interviewing techniques. In this video, Doral Bank not only has a session of this sort, but offers professional clothing for the students to take home and use for their interviews.

Here are some other important tips for doing well in the interview process.

1. Dress appropriately and professionally.
2. Bring a copy of your resume and any other materials that they might need. This is true even if you’ve already given the company a copy of your resume.
3. Come on time, or even a few minutes early.
4. Ask questions during the interview. You shouldn’t feel that the company is grilling you. Show an interest in them and make sure to ask them questions as well.
5. Shake hands and say thank you.

Dinosaur Skeleton Up for Auction in the U.K.

Unusual items often appear in auctions all over the world. Last year, some of the strangest objects to go under the hammer included a stained pair of Elvis Presley’s underwear, a well-dressed skeleton, menus from the Titanic, the piano from Casablanca and Albert Einstein’s ‘God Letter’.

Now, a rare, nearly complete dinosaur skeleton is on display and up for auction in the U.K. The Diplodocus bones were discovered in America. Sharon Reich from Reuters reports:


Themed Summer Kids Activities

tarzan-treehouseSummer vacations are long for kids, and they can often seem even longer for parents.  One way of getting through them is to organize themed activities.  In other words, take a theme your children like and construct activities around it.  For example, if your kids like Disney movies (and really, which kids don’t?) create activities around them.

Look at 101 Dalmatians and see if you can offer to walk the neighbor’s dog while they are away.  Alternatively, take your kids to a dog show and ask them to spot all the Dalmatians or count 101 dogs.  Perhaps you have a dog yourself in which case you can get your kids to take it to a senior’s home so that the elderly can enjoy “101 Dalmatians” in a way as well.

If you have little girls, take a leaf out of Cinderella’s book and go shoe shopping!  Girls love getting new shoes and you can get your child to see if they “fit” correctly like Cinderella.  Boys can get sneakers that feel good when they run around – focus on the fit of the shoe, just like as in Cinderella.

One day can be Italian day with The Lady and the Tramp theme.  Get your kids to make easy Italian meals like lasagna, spaghetti Bolognese and Pizza Margherita!  Every kid loves pizza!

For getting out of the house and building up a sweat, dress up one kid as Tarzan and have the others help him/her build a treehouse.  Then you make a picnic and some home-made ices for them to enjoy in their new construction.

There are many more activities one can do with kids that center around Disney movies.  Just think about your kids’ favorite movies and figure out a way to connect an activity to them.  The summer vacation will be over in no time at all this way.

traducción español