Sunday, June 8, 2014

Greek Girls Guide to Success

     Started from nothing, (the bottom) and now I have accomplished everything (we here). I did it! Made it into the tedx talk, spoke, and completed my amazing journey through 20 time. I feel as though this opportunity gave me light and hope to do something I actually care about, and I am not sad it's over because it isn't. I will take the knowledge and experience with me my entire life and 20% of my time dedicated to things I love is a sacrifice I am more than willing to take. Talking to people about what I love was amazing, I felt natural and went smoothly, and when I got on stage and spoke my first words, all of my nerves washed away. I had a great time and enjoyed telling people about my amazing journey and educating others about my newfound knowledge. My grandparents and family could not be more proud of me and I am extremely proud of myself.
 What I will miss next year is my english class. I'm taking AP next year and I'm afraid it will not be as life changing and memorable as this year because I will lose the time with Mr. Provenzano and all of my amazing friends I got to share this time with. They are the best and 2nd hour HAL won't be forgotten.
 Ok I need to stop being so sentimental. It's almost summer and to be honest I could not be more excited if I tried. As I feel the load of the next four days piling on, I have to keep in mind that after I get through these four days, I'm home free. Right about now I feel like a bull in a China shop, ready to explode at any moment from all of the stress and work.

I think I answered the first and last question above but here are the other three

3. What are some aspects of 20 Time that should NOT be changed and that should be changed for students next year?

I think the aspects of 20 time that should not be changed are the talk requirement at the end of the year. Reflecting on projects and what you have learned makes the project so much more meaningful and sharing them with the class helps them learn as well. I also loved the blog posts which are necessary to track progress and 20 time on fridays should not be changed. 
It needs to last the whole year, and be introduced on the 1st day of class to get kids thinking and doing as early as possible. 
 If someone hates their project and is complaining about their project being work, they should change their project. People are allowed to fail, which is very important, however I saw some laziness in the projects this year. People failed, and did not do anything for the rest of the year, then proceeded to say in their talk that if you fail you need to get up and try again. These people failed and did not do anything after they failed, and sat around the rest of the project then contradicted themselves in their talk. If you hate your project, change projects. It should be easier to change what you are doing to stop promoting people failing after 3 weeks and doing nothing for the rest of the time.

4. Is 20 Time something that more students should do in school? Please explain why or why not.
Yes, it is so easy to get lost in everything school related that you lose yourself and who you are. You go through the motions and forget what you love, letting your school obligations take over. This project allows you to do what you love and to find yourself, which is essential to teens everywhere. 

5. What advice would you give to students who are doing 20 Time next year?

Start early, don't waste time doing nothing. Spend lots of time thinking about something that you love to do, not something that would look good on a college resume, choose wisely. This opportunity will most likely only come once and passing it up would be foolish. If you hate what you are doing, do something else. This project shouldn't feel like work. Use fridays to do something productive. You will regret it if you don't. Support others, get them to support you. It is hard to accomplish something if you do not have support. Get others involved and have them help you work towards your hopes and dreams. Aim high, no goal is too big of a goal, no dream is unattainable.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

GGGTGF Signing off

I finished my ted talk, and I imagine this will be one of my last blogs for the year, but not of my life. I plan to continue this project throughout my high school years and on to college and wherever life takes me. Learning to find your passion, make time for what you love, and always keep family close have been things I will never forget and a huge part in my priorities and my growth through 20 time.
My ted talk went great and I want more than anything to talk to people about my experiences and what I have learned in my journey in the real ted talk. I hope all of my hard work pays off and I get to be one of the speakers at the event! Even if I am not chosen, at least I will have the knowledge I have gained through this project and I can take it with me for the rest of my life.
Thanks so much

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Greek Girls Guide To Good Food #24

     Happy Mother's day everybody! May has been super hectic for me!! This honors journalism create your own newspaper project has been a killer I have to admit it, plus studying for my ap gov test. But never fear I have saved special time for my 20 time and ted talk. I have decided to modify how I was structuring my talk and I am going to now do bullet points of what I had laid out because there is just too much pressure of forgetting if I try to memorize something word by word. Also, I think it will sound a bit staged and awkward. Trying to condense my talk into just bullet points gives me freedom and will make it easier to connect with the audience.
     This week I have worked on finishing the cookbook I have made, however I need more recipes from my Yiayia to finish. I have been trying to get the recipes out of her for her last secrets, but unfortunately she has been sick for the past week and she is bed ridden. I am so sorry for her and I really hope she gets better because I need her not only for the cookbook but I miss seeing her smiling and loving face everyday. She is my partner in crime (or in the kitchen) and I am lost without her. I have still been laying out my book and talk, but it has been slow and hard I won't lie. I am desperate to have at least a sample of my book to show off at the first time I present my Ted Talk in front of my classmates, but I don't know if it will happen. I would hate for nobody to see how much I've been working and thinking this year if I don't get into the final Ted Talk date and just get to present without my book in front of my classmates. This stresses me out because everyone is coming up with their final products and mine isn't finished and this could prevent me from having a good enough talk to get into the real Ted talk. I need to keep my head up and keep working because I know I am capable of doing this. Thanks for the support.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Greek Girls Guide to Good Food #23

Well, Spring break was amazing. I went to Hilton Head, a small island in South Carolina for this week and was blessed with amazing weather. We parasailed and paddle boarded and saw tons of dolphins. I did not have much time to spend working on my talk, but don't worry I worked on it every second I got. I currently have about 20 recipes that are ready to go into my cookbook and I will be getting more every week leading up to the talk and my goal is to have about 40 or 50 recipes in the finished product. I looked into publishing online and getting print copies and I have decided to explore both options. My talk is coming along nicely and I have to add about 3 more minutes to it and a few more slides! I am so excited that I started sooner rather than later because the date of the ted talk is approaching fast and I would still love to pursue my goal of presenting at the conference. My slides I have decided will consist of mostly pictures and video clips and will act as a small guide to keep me on track, while I will memorize my talk or at least mostly memorize it before presenting. I don't know if I want to share the unfinished product, so next week I will paste my work into the blog to show what I have done. Thanks for the support so excited to show off my book! Y'all have a great two weeks!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Greek Girls Guide To Good Food #22-

This week I learned how to cook rice pilaf, one of my favorite rice dishes. I have not been able to perfect the recipe since I just tried it out today, so most likely I will have a video by next week of this. I have been very stressed with the end of the quarter and trying to finish my grades up and haven't made much time for my project. I need to make more time and prepare my talk. I will defiantly end up talking for more than eight minutes in my talk because have a lot to say and I want to include some clips from my journey and along the way. My slides are going to encompass my learning experience and my journey along the way throughout the year. I want to talk about how much food means to me and how much it should mean to everyone around me. To bring families together and to create the cultural and bonding experience, food is more than just nutrition. All people can relate to food and it serves as a common ground for getting closer to others. Next week I will continue my videos and start working on my speech. Till next time,

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Greek Girls Guide to Good Food #21-Gigantes

Hey everyone! This week I am going to be posting the recipe for Fontina, a popular and Greek bean dish with veggies. I am no meat for lent still so we have been eating beens a whole lot. I am so excited for my talk and I still hope to present at the Ted-x conference. I have an idea of what to talk about and my project will be moving in a slightly different direction from now on. For the next couple months leading up to the conference, I will focus on writing my speech and compiling recipes. There will probably be less videos and more recipes so I can begin to put them all into a book. This will allow me to become closer to my end goal and refocus my project.

Serves about 4
3 cups gigante beans or lima beans
1 can tomato paste 
1/2 cup chopped onions
3 cloves chopped garlic
1 cup fresh dill
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup water
1 cup chicken broth
1/8 cup olive oil 
Salt and pepper

1. Set the beans in water overnight or bring them to a boil and let sit for about 2 hours submerged in water. Set aside.
2. Start a saucepan with olive oil and add in the garlic, onions and carrots. Sauté until lightly brown or about 6-7 minutes. 
3. Add tomato paste, water, and chicken broth and stir continuously until mixture thickens or about 15 minutes. 
4. Add the beans slowly cup by cup, stirring occasionally, turn the fire down to low.
5. Season generously with salt, pepper and greek seasoning. 
6. Enjoy!!!

Monday, March 10, 2014

Greek Girls Guide to Good Food #20- Bougatsa

This week I am making Bougatsa, a phyllo dish that I always make with my family when we are all up north together. This is one of my absolute favorite Greek Desserts! I am so excited to make it and bring it in for my teacher on Monday. I have been working hard and tried a recipe yesterday that I will modify when I make it Sunday either by myself or with my Popou. The bougatsa video will be in this post tomorrow because I had some technical troubles yesterday and was not able to upload the video. Enjoy the recipe and a picture of the lamb a few weeks ago!!

The recipe is as follows:

2 cups milk
1/4 cup semolina flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs whole, 2 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla
1 lemon peel
11/4 cup butter
1-2 tsp cinnamon
powdered sugar to top
1 pkg. Phyllo Dough

1. Preheat oven to 350
2.  Start by warming the milk up in a large saucepan, and melting 1/2 cup of the butter either in another saucepan or in the microwave.
3. Once milk is warm (not boiling) grate the lemon peel finely and add it to the milk. Combine butter in saucepan.
4. Turn the fire to low and add the semolina flour, while stirring.
5. In a separate bowl, combine eggs, yolks, vanilla, and sugar and mix thouroughly.
6. When semolina mixture thickens, add the egg mixture to it and keep stirring on low.
7. Prepare a baking pan with butter and melt the other 3/4 cup butter.
8. Brush about 10 sheets of phyllo with butter and add them to the bottom of the pan.
9. When semolina mixture is of custard consistency, add it on top of the phyllo and put 10 more sheets of phyllo on top.
10. Bake for 30-35 minutes and enjoy!!