Quibara by Celia Cruz fills the atmosphere around the house, along with the aroma of freshly cooked black beans, white rice, sweet plantains, and pork. Nothing can get in the way of a Cuban family gathering. The plan is to have fun and that is what will happen. Everyone is dancing, helping in the kitchen, gossiping, and just having a good time. After dinner the men join outside to smoke tobaccos and play dominoes, while the women and children stay inside to chat. The night seems to never end, though when it does, we happily bid our goodbyes and say, “Te veo luego”.
New World School of the Arts: The Shnazzy 5
It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s the Shnazzy 5!!! There’s no stopping them! They are always together. An inseparable bunch. Five fabulous musical ladies. They are each other’s support through the good, the bad, and the ugly. It is sometimes hard to talk to them all at once. You will get lost with all of their inside joke references. You can find them walking to lunch for Chicken Grill, in the halls between classes, or hanging out by the music lockers. Whatever each of them are doing, it is always with a best friend by their side.
U.S. Kenpo Kai: Student
The amount of sweat, blood, bruises, and broken bones I have lost/accumulated throughout the thirteen years and continuing, has definitely paid off. Not because I have a black belt or can paralyze my opponent in one move. Rather the life lesson’s I have learned. Dedication, confidence, focus, respect for others and myself, motivation, and morals . these have all lead and will continue leading me in the path of ultimate success. It has given me the empowerment to achieve any goal I set myself to. If I should discontinue going to the classes, I will still have a golden ticket in my hand. It has been one of the most rewarding and enjoyable experience of my life.
St. Theresa Catholic Church: VERITAS Youth Group
I don’t want to get all religious and stuff, but this was a fun group to be in. We would listen to inspirational music, play knowledge games, watch movies, read passages, and reflect on our lives. I would have to say the best part was getting free pizza, cookies, and soda. I made a lot of new wonderful friends and learned a great deal about myself and others.
Miami Children’s Hospital: Volunteer
“Hey you there!”. “Huh?”. “Yes, you! Hunter, you forgot your balloon”. No, I didn’t have to dress in a clown suite, but I did bring smiles to many children. For the summer of ’08 I would go every weekday for the afternoon to entertain sick, injured, or just bored children and sometimes their parents as well. I especially enjoyed playing the violin for them. I loved to see the smile on their faces when I would play A Whole New World or Viva La Vida. It was sometimes hard to see the suffering and pain a lot of them were going through, but I knew what I was doing would help them forget for at least the time being.