"Everything is possible to him who believes." Mark 9:23

Sunday, December 9, 2012

A beautiful send-off for a beautiful woman

Miss Ohio, Elissa McCracken asked me to speak at her Miss America send-off. I was both honored and excited. Below is my speech. Enjoy!

There are a few things that are important to a delta zeta; her big and her little, her sisters, the socials, and the endless amount of clothes available to wear for any occasion. But what is most important to a member of delta zeta is her creed. We strive as young women to live by our creed. One person in particular lives the delta zeta creed in her daily life. Elissa, whom we are all here to celebrate today, embraces our values and creed, and what it means to be a sister of delta zeta.
            “To the world, I promise temperance, and insight, and courage” this first line of our creed defines Elissa in her current role as Miss Ohio. During Elissa’s middle school years, she was cyber bullied. Today, Elissa helps fight against cyber bullying with insight and courage.
            “To crusade for justice, to seek the truth and defend it always” honesty is a quality that Elissa exemplifies routinely. Whether she was giving her opinion in delta zeta, or offering advice to a young middle school girl who was being bullied; Elissa never fails to show compassion and honesty in her words and actions.
            “To those whom my life may touch in slight measure, may I give graciously of what is mine” this line is a favorite line of many delta zeta sisters. We believe in giving back to the community, whether we are raising money for the painted turtle camp or the Starkey hearing foundation. As delta zetas, we are always the first to raise our hand to volunteer and Elissa is no exception. Always going above and beyond what is asked of her; Elissa makes sure she can do whatever she can to help others.
            “To my friends, understanding and appreciation” this next line in our creed describes qualities that Elissa possesses. Her empathy, kindness and listening abilities allow Elissa to be a friend to all the sisters in delta zeta. Although she has been busy traveling during the school year, she has still kept up her relationships because she truly cares about sisters and what they are doing in their own lives.
            “To those closer ones, love that is ever steadfast” through delta zeta, Elissa has embraced a loving family of her own. Being an only child, Elissa has acquired the sisters she never had growing up. Her devotion and kindness for her family shows in the smile she wears when they are together in a room. 
            “To my mind, growth” this line in our creed is one that applies to delta zetas, young and old. We are constantly allowing our minds to grow. By learning new things every day, Elissa has given herself the skills and qualities needed to be successful, not just in DZ or school but in life.
            “To myself, faith” Elissa has unwavering faith in herself. She never lets criticism or disappointment discourage her from achieving her dreams. It has always been a dream of hers to become Miss Ohio, and here we are today, sending her off to Miss America. Elissa’s faith and commitment to herself has allowed her to be true to herself.
            “That I may walk truly in the light of the flame” Elissa truly embodies delta zeta and our creed through her words and through her actions. We know that as she embarks on her journey to Miss America, she will not only represent Ohio, Ohio northern university and delta zeta, she will represent our ideals and our creed.  Elissa will keep that flame burning true and bright as she represents every single one of her delta zeta sisters.
Congratulations Elissa. Delta zeta is so proud of you. We look forward to supporting you as you follow your dreams to Miss America. 
Delta Zeta's supporting Elissa

Elissa crowned as Miss Ohio

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Email Apnea

I remember having an AOL email account, logging on, and hearing the familiar male voice say, "You've got mail." My palms would get sweaty and my breathing would get quicker, thinking to myself, "I have mail! Who sent me mail? What could it be?" Usually it was just spam or junk mail and the let down would return my bodily functions back to normal. Little did I know that I was suffering from "email apnea." Yes, it is a real condition.

A study of 200 people was conducted by Linda Stone over a six to seven month period. About 80% of the people Stone studied suffered from this email condition. People with email apnea held their breath or interrupted their breathing patterns while they read their email. The study, which was featured in the Business Insider, talked about the relationship between breath-holding and vagus nerve. Stone said, "The vagus nerve is responsible for mediating the autonmic nervous system, which includes the 'fight or flight' and 'rest and digest' feelings." When people hold their breath while checking their email, it puts their body in 'fight or flight' mode, which causes your heart rate to increase and your liver to pour glucose and cholesterol into the bloodstream.

Since reading this article, I've noticed myself listening and paying attention to the way I breathe when I open my mail. I now challenge you to pay closer attention to your breathing patterns next time you check your email!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Personal Website

I've always wanted my own personal website. I figured blogging was as close as I would ever get, until in class we were given a personal website assignment. I was super excited. I went straight to work on my website. I soon found out that it was a lot more difficult than I thought it would be. Text boxes didn't move where I wanted them too, colors changed on one some shapes but not others. I worked for about five hours total on the website.

I put my resume on my site, my projects from internships and some fun pictures that showed my hobbies. As soon as I published my website, I felt a sense of accomplishment. I felt that I was able to show my personality through the website. I plan on using the website for future use and I hope I can keep it updated.

Check out my website and give me some feedback! http://m-florio.wix.com/melissaflorio

Monday, December 3, 2012

A Bittersweet Ending

Ashley and I after we
received our bids to Delta Zeta!
A little over three years ago, I was being drug from sorority house to sorority house by a platinum blonde girl, who talked too much and too loud. I never saw myself in a sorority, let alone president of a sorority. And here I stand today, my last day as president of our wonderful chapter. It has been both an honor and a blessing to serve as your president this past year. I have learned so much about this sorority and the women that make up this chapter, and I have learned a lot about myself. I have watched our sorority grow in numbers and in I have watched my sisters grow as women. I have found my own leadership style and I have learned what it takes to be a leader. Serving as your president was never easy, nothing is easy with you girls, but at the end of the day, I knew that it would always be worth it.

My little and g-little
I had an amazing executive board to back me up on my decisions, who respect each other and could always make me laugh. Thank you for being a great group of ladies to work with. I had great chairwomen whose brilliant ideas and endless planning made me beam with pride and say, “Those are my girls.” I also had sisters who may not have played a leading role, but you are what make our sorority strong. Encouraging words, likes on Facebook, or even just a hug could make every bad day better. To my little, thank you for always putting up with me and complaining. I promise you’ll still be the First Daughter and get security wherever you go.

I have watched our chapter overcome adversity, and I have seen our chapter’s amazing accomplishments. I am excited to pass on the ever-burning flame to Nichole and I look forward to watching her lead our chapter. Respect her, listen to her, and be patient with new changes. Nichole, call me whenever you need. I’ll be sitting by my phone waiting.

Thank you girls, for allowing me to be your president over the past year. It has been an amazing experience, and one that I will never forget. Keep working hard at everything you do and keep making our chapter the most wonderful chapter there is. I’ll still be around next semester if you ever need someone to talk to, to get advice from or just to vent about life. Thank you for this wonderful experience and I am so thankful to be a part of this fantastic sisterhood.  
The sisterhood before Philanthropy Round
The sisterhood before Sisterhood Round
After winning Greek Sing 2012!!!!
Myself with other Region 5 Delta Zeta Presidents
at the 50th Delta Zeta National Convention!
My beautiful senior class!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Creativity at its finest

I'm kind of on a video kick this week. I stumbled upon a video tonight that really grabbed my attention. It was a video made entirely out of Instagram photos. What a great way to make a video! This Mexico-based band, The Plastics Revolution, was the first video ever made with Instagram. There were 1,905 still frame photos that were taken on an iPhone and put together to make this video.

I love this idea of using Instagram to make a video. The idea is different, innovative, fun and really makes this band stand out from other bands. Not only is the video cool, but the music is great to listen to, too (even if it is all in Spanish). As a future marketer and public relations practitioner, it is important for me to have great ideas like this. Creativity and implementing it effectively will not only help my organization stand out from the rest, but it will also help me stand out from the rest. Watching this video really helped me to look at social media in a different light. It is ok to use social media the traditional way just like everyone else. Sometimes though, you have to break out of the mold and do something different, and this is the perfect way to do it. I really think that this idea of making video out of still pictures like this is really going to catch on. Especially because a large majority of people who have smartphones, also have Instagram. Making a video like this is as simple as taking some pictures on your phone and uploading them onto a computer and making a movie. It is brilliant!

Watch the video and see for yourself!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

What is PR?

What is PR?

That was the question that Ashley and I posed to students around campus this week. In our class, we were assigned a video project. We had to create a video that could be shown to potential students and their parents, talking about our wonderful public relations program here at Ohio Northern University. We asked students ranging from education, music, engineering, business and graphic design what they thought PR meant. We got a lot of great responses!

After asking non-PR majors what PR was, we asked two senior PR students. They gave their definition of public relations and other qualities of a PR student. Ashley and I also wanted to share the great benefits of being a PR student at ONU. We focused on being able to join PRSSA, attend national PRSSA events, network with professionals, gaining real-world experience in firm, and the ability to work at great internships.

We hope potential students watch this video and see what cool things we get to do for class. I also hope they see the great benefits the our program has to offer.

I hope you watch this video and enjoy it just as much as we do!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

My Wonderful Thanksgiving

The turkey was stuffed, the potatoes were mashed. The pie was cut and the tables were set. It was time to eat our Thanksgiving lunch. I was so excited to eat and share an amazing meal with my family. Thanksgiving is the beginning of a whirlwind of holidays but it is always the most relaxed. We take our time eating lunch, sharing stories and catching up with family members. I always eat too much but I never regret it.

Usually after lunch, we clean up the tables and turn on the football game. We hang out and let our food digest for a bit, then the real fun begins. We start the afternoon off with a leisurely stroll down to the crick about a quarter mile down from our house. Once we make it to the crick, we all run around and find a handful of quality sticks. We play, "Pooh Sticks", a game that began years ago when we were all much younger. After you find your stick, we count down and toss our sticks off the bridge into the crick. We then run over to the other side of the bridge and wait to see whose stick comes to the other side first. The winner gets bragging rights until our next round of Pooh Sticks! Now that my sisters and cousins are a bit older, we simply play Pooh Sticks for our two younger cousins. 

Playing Pooh Sticks and getting ready to drop our sticks!

Waiting to see whose sticks come out first!

After a few exciting rounds of Pooh Sticks, we went down the road a little bit farther to the horse pasture and fed the horses some corn from the field. Chipper and Trigger are the horses that Ashley's family own and have in the pasture. Eventually we walked back to the house and started some exciting games of euchre and pinnacle. The older folks took naps and those that were interested in football watched the game. Some played air hockey and ping pong, too. Spirits, cards, naps and the occasional snacking filled up our afternoon hours.

You know it's time for supper when more people start poking around the kitchen for food. We get out the leftover turkey and make turkey sandwiches with all the necessary toppings. It is a whole new spread of food. As soon as dinner ends, people start sprawling out everywhere, closing their eyes and moaning. 

My family can be crazy and fun but at the end of the day, I love them to death and I always have a blast. The conversations my family have would turn people away at the door. Unbelievable, but I wouldn't have it any other way. I am so glad I have an amazing family and that I was able to be with them this Thanksgiving. Every day I feel blessed to be a part of such a wonderful family. Today couldn't have been more perfect. 
All of my cousins and me.