August 2022 Issue / Volume 3
This Issue’s Contents
- Poem of The Month
- Drawing Prompt
- Book Review
- Empowering Activity
- Sustainable Fashion
- Main Article
Poem Of The Month
Within the Woodland
This land of trees drips with history
With magical fables and folklore
Sprouts of ivy
Spiral and twist around giant oaks
That were once saplings in the moss-covered ground
Far below, the trickle of a stream
Echoes through the silence
The water spills and cascades wildly over stones
Birds chirp in the sprawling canopy above
in shrill melodies
Though the summer sky is blanketed with thick gray clouds, sunlight still peeks through
Creating the illusion that everything is covered in a golden haze of light
The sound of trees being torn down in the distance pierces the serenity of the moment
Soon, this beautiful forest will be nothing but a barren landscape filled with towering metal structures that contain homes for people
But can someone truly feel satisfied if they are never connected to the natural world around them?
If their entire world is made of bricks and concrete and metal?
*A Note About This Poem: This poem primarily focuses on climate change and the widespread effects of deforestation. For more information on deforestation and ways to help you can visit this website.
Draw an Interesting Aesthetic
For this drawing, I wanted to draw someone in an aesthetic that I found interesting. I used different elements that I have seen around places like Pinterest to create a person that, to me, looked cool and intriguing. I particularly liked drawing in the white graphic liner, as I had always wanted to draw that on one of my characters. I also liked the choice to give her an unnatural hair color because it was very fun to draw. You can draw a new aesthetic you’d like to have and send us a picture at email@example.com
Above: I used these photos to add texture to my drawing and give it more depth.
Five Fabulous Books to Read This Summer
1. A Magic Steeped in Poison – Judy I. Lin
A Magic Steeped in Poison is a fantasy tale about a girl who enters a competition for crafting tea. Despite the challenges she faces, she perseveres for her sick sister and her mother who died. Woven with magic and heartbreak, this novel is a perfect read for a quiet afternoon.
2. Ace of Spades – Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé
Chiamaka Adebayo and Devon Richards are the only black students at their school, Niveus Academy. When an anonymous sender named “Aces” sends messages about them to the entire school, their school experience is sabotaged. Through Chiamaka and Devon aren’t necessarily friends to begin with, they work together to unveil the mysterious person, or people, Aces targeting them.
3. A Map to The Sun – Sloane Leong
A Map to The Sun is a graphic novel that uses bold and vibrant colors as well as exquisite imagery to capture moments of love and loss as the main character Ren figures out who her friends are as she continues to pursue her love of basketball.
4. We Are Okay – Nina LaCour
This book is about the loss of loved ones, the gut-wrenching heartbreak that comes after first love, and trauma. This story is beautifully written and is woven with friendship and memories of the past. The main character, Marin learns that the people she once loved aren’t the same as they were when she knew them and must learn to accept the painful truth.
5. The Last Cuentista – Donna Barba Higuera
The Last Cuentista begins when Earth is about to be destroyed by a comet. Although Petra and her family are chosen to join the journey to a new planet, Petra has to leave behind everything she has ever known. Petra, among others her age must continue the human race. When a corrupt system created by humans wipes everyone’s memories, Petra must rely on the only thing she can remember, the tales her grandmother told her.
Draw a Song
Sometimes, listening to good music can do wonders to improve your mood. So the next time you feel like you want to listen to music, try this activity. Put on a playlist or album that you really like and tune out your surroundings. Focus on your breath and try to draw what you hear. You can make an abstract sketch for each song you hear so that you have a complete set of drawings that go along with the playlist. Don’t worry about how good the drawings look or if they go together, simply try to capture the essence of the song! This activity not only lets you create some cool art but also helps you relax and rewire yourself.
An Outfit Styled With Reformation
Reformation is a clothing brand based in Los Angeles, California that prioritizes sustainability in its practices. Reformation invests money to reduce its carbon footprint and has been 100% carbon-neutral since 2015. Plus, reformation makes sure to recycle materials and hopes to achieve zero-waste.
Below: Inspiration for the colors in the drawing above and the outfit
How to Prepare Yourself for Change
Change is inevitable. Everything in life can and will eventually change in some way, and while this is commonly known, people still struggle to process changes that occur in their lives. Having a source of consistency or routine is something that humans naturally value and seek out. Knowing what to expect helps calm the mind and let it settle into its surroundings. Knowing all this, it makes sense why it can be so difficult to adapt to changes in life. However, being able to bounce back from changes is equally as important as finding stability. Think about some changes that you may be expecting in the near future, do you feel prepared for them? If not, you may want to step back and consider these points to help you adjust to the new changes you may experience.
What do You Already Know?
Before a big change, try to familiarize yourself with what you currently know. While this sounds counterproductive, it can actually help you know how you can handle new things. For example, one change that we will soon experience is going back to school. This change impacts a lot of things in our lives, including our schedules. Once we go back to school, we will need to plan what to do and when to do it. To make the best plan, it would actually be beneficial to consider how we spend our time outside of school and think about the things that provide us a sense of stability and comfort. Getting an appropriate amount of sleep and free time are both things that do not have to change when we go to school. So to know how to better prepare for a new, busier schedule, it’s important to first consider what we are already doing right and to use those things as we adapt to the change.
Can You Ease Yourself into this Change?
When people think of big changes in their lives, they tend to think about sudden challenges that they can’t prepare for. While this can sometimes happen, a lot of the time, change can be less sudden when you properly plan for it. If you know that you have to make a change because of something, try to start preparing yourself for that change as soon as you can. Even if you have to do something differently because of something that is beyond your control, you can still help yourself out by making small differences that lead up to the change that you would experience.
What Good Can Come from this Change?
As previously mentioned, people usually do not like change because it takes away from our sense of comfort and stability. Whenever something changes in our lives, we tend to think about it in a negative way and long for how things used to be. Though this is a normal response, it only makes the process of change harder to accept. Instead of focusing on the negative or challenging parts of a big change, try to find the positives. What potential does this change bring? How can you learn from this experience? How does this change help you? Finding the positives in really any situation can help motivate you and make you feel more prepared to face it.
Think About Previous Changes in Your Life
We are constantly changing and shaping into new people as we go through life. While you may feel regret for some of the changes you have made, try to think about all of the positive changes that have happened in your life. Whether it be a change in personality, schedule, or location, think about how those previous changes have helped shape you into the person you are now. With each change in your life, you have the potential to learn and grow from it. Whatever change you’re going through, remember that you have already been through so many changes before that have made you a better person.
Life comes with many challenges and experiences that make you feel uncomfortable and scared. However, these moments are usually out of your control and are simply a part of life. While it is okay and also normal to feel stressed about changes in your life, it’s important to remember that you still have to face them. By preparing, evaluating, and thinking positively about any new changes in your life, you will be able to adapt much quicker and easier.
A Sun-Soaked Summer
I wanted to create this gallery of photographs as a reflection of the summer and a way to look back at this year. I noticed that being in nature this year, particularly in the summer months has been beneficial to my well-being overall. (and I was able to capture these photos!) Stopping and looking at nature’s bountiful beauties also inspired me to write this issue’s Poem of The Month. Regardless of where you are and how you spend your summer, take a moment to stop and reflect on the world around you and your life.
Take note of the flowers blooming around you. What are the flowers called? I created a journal observing many of the flowers I saw this year, including poppies, dahlias, cosmos, lavender, and many more.
Perfect Plant-Based Cinnamon Rolls
This recipe is 100% delicious and also 100% plant-based. Everything about these cinnamon rolls is delightful! The dough comes out super light and fluffy while also not being too sweet, which leaves the filling and icing to add in the sweet flavors that make this recipe so addicting. I have made these multiple times and each time they are a hit!
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3/4 cup non-dairy milk
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp vegan butter
- 1/4 cup vegan butter
- 6 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 cup vegan cream cheese
- 2 tbsp vegan butter
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
- In a small bowl, pour in your milk of choice (make sure it is warm), yeast packet, and a spoon of sugar. Let rest for 5-10 minutes until it is foamy.
- Then in a stand mixer, add the dry ingredients (flour, salt, sugar).
- Carefully mix in the yeast mixture and vanilla extract.
- Add in the softened vegan butter a tbsp at a time and let the mixer continue to work the dough for 7 mins until it has formed a ball.
- Grease the bowl and let the dough rest for 60-90 minutes. Make sure to cover the bowl with a towel and keep it in a warm area until the dough has doubled in size.
- While the dough is resting, prepare the filling. Cream together the softened butter with the brown sugar and cinnamon. Set aside or keep in the fridge.
- Once the dough is ready, flour a clean surface and roll out the dough into a rectangle that is 1/4 inch thick.
- Spread the filling in an even layer on top of the dough, making sure to leave a little bit of space at the end of the rectangle. Carefully roll a tight roll and pinch the dough at the ends to keep the log shape.
- Cut into 12 pieces and place into a baking dish.
- Cover the dish and let the rolls rest for an hour.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Bake for 35 minutes. Let cool for at least 10 minutes.
- Additionally, you can prepare a frosting for the rolls. To do this, cream together the cream cheese and butter.
- Then, add the vanilla and salt. Slowly add in the powdered sugar while you mix.
- Spread the icing on top and enjoy!
Charities to Support
- Support Ukraine
- Human Rights Campaign
- Black-Owned Businesses to Support
- The Asian American Foundation
- Ways to Reduce Deforestation
Questions or Comments about S&A Magazine?
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