Say Your Final Goodbyes To Toys 'R' Us

Say Your Final Goodbyes To Toys 'R' Us

I remember it like it was yesterday.
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As most people have heard, Toys "R" Us has filed for bankruptcy and will be closing or selling all of their 800 stores nationwide. This has come to a shock to most people, but the truth of the matter is that children no longer are playing with action figures and Barbie dolls but rather iPads and other electronic devices. While Toys "R" Us has been around since 1948 and has managed to evolve through the years, they are still a toy store and are not meant to be filled with electronic devices.

As a Toys "R" Us kid myself, I paid my respects to my local store and this is what I saw.

Now more than ever, people are flooding the aisles of Toys "R" Us desperate to get the best deals, to walk through their favorite section one last time, and even ride the last standing kiddie rides in front of the cash registers. For me, I walked right over to the dolls section where I use to love picking out my new favorite doll to ask my parents for. Sadly, two of my favorite doll brands, Bratz, and My Scenes’ can no longer be found, and most of the dolls that replaced them such as Monster High dolls are basically revamped hybrid versions of them.

However, there are still hundreds of toys that are sure to give shoppers nostalgia. These toys include classic board games, Legos, karaoke machines, razor scooters and more. From what I saw not a single person in the store overlooked these toys or any for that matter. Instead, everyone carefully looked through each aisle holding onto the joy of examining each and every toy in sight. Personally, I loved hearing bits and pieces of everyone’s memories being told while I passed them by in the aisles. Watching parents with their little kids was especially touching as they just kept nodding their heads when their children would throw another toy into the shopping cart. Therefore, the atmosphere was bittersweet…..but the deals were priceless!

Deals and Quick Facts

Website: open for a limited time..no orders being taken

Gift cards: will be valid until approximately April 21st but cannot be redeemed for cash

NO Returns

Sales in Stores: currently anywhere from 10%-30% on all merchandise

So what is to become of all these stores once all the inventory is sold? Well, many companies have been already eyeing these Toys "R" Us’ including Best Buy, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Big Lots, and more. Since Toys "R" Us’ are relatively large in size, it is likely that they will not become local stores or clothing stores but instead department stores of some sort.

In addition, all Babies "R" Us’ are going out of business which are also around the same size, making it a time of competition amongst companies to rent out the stores. However, even though Toys "R" Us may be closing their doors, that does not mean we should give up on raising future generations with the toys of our past. Electronics may be wonderful and progressive, but I think most of us can agree a good old game of Candyland with the family is priceless.

Cover Image Credit: Instagram

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To The Nursing Major

Is it all worth it?
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"You're going to feel like quitting. You're going to struggle. You'll have days where you'll wonder, 'what's it all for?'

You'll have days when people attempt to break you down, or challenge your intelligence, skills, and right to be where you are. You'll have moments when you question your own abilities, and perhaps your sanity - but you'll rise.

You'll rise because your strength as a nurse is not determined by one grade, one shift or one job - it's an ongoing journey of learning, honor, humility and a chance to make even the smallest difference in the lives of your patients."

Don't ever give up on achieving your dreams to be a nurse. Keep pushing forward, no matter how hard it is. Nursing is not an easy major. You will have very little, if any, time to do anything other than study. But just think about how great it will feel to connect with a patient, pray with them, and even save his or her life.

This will make all of the late night studying, weekly breakdowns, countless cups of coffee, and tests so hard all you want to do is cry, worth it. To see a patient's face light up when you walk in his or her room will make your heart melt and you'll know you chose the right major.

The kind of nurse you will be isn't based on a test grade, it's based on your heart for the people you are caring for. You may have failed a class, but don't let that ruin you. Try again and keep pushing toward your goal. Don't allow others around you to drag you down and tell you that you aren't good enough to be a nurse.

Show them how strong you are and that you will never give up.

There will be days when all you want to do is quit, I know I question my major more than once a week; however, there is a patient out there that needs you and your caring heart. You can do this, have faith in yourself that you can move mountains.

I will say that you definitely must have a heart for nursing.

Personally, I want to be a Pediatric Oncologist and work at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Just the thought of those precious children going through the hardest part of their lives, keeps me going so that I can be there for them. I want to be a light to my patients and their families during a dark time. When I feel like giving up, I just think about how many lives I have the chance to touch and I keep on going.

So when you feel like giving up, just think about your future patients and how you can make a difference, even if its only for one person. I love the quote from Katie Davis that states, "I will not change the world, Jesus will do that. But I can change the world for one person. So I will keep loving, one person at a time."

Even though this quote is about foreign missions, I believe it fits the mold for nursing as well.

Nurses have the opportunity to change the world for people every day. Just remember that, smile, don't give up, and keep pushing toward your goal.

Cover Image Credit: chla.org

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Labor Unions Are Integral To Our Country, And They Need Our Help

Organized labor has been a staple of this country for generations, and its' decline is forever associated with various declines in our standard of living.

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USW, UAW, Teamsters, AFSCME. Those may just sound like odd names to many, but to me and many American workers, they are the myriad labor unions that have been integral to our country and its' blue-collar population. They have helped in many ways to defend workers, give them good benefits plans, and to protect their salary and ability to work from corporations.

Now? They have been in decline for decades, and sit at just 10.7% of all workers according to U.S. government estimates. This is a remarkably low number for the United States' workforce and is also another sad part of the economic stagnation of the U.S. since union membership began to collapse.

It might seem a bit odd to believe that unions and income inequality would be linked: you would expect that, maybe as a gesture of goodwill, corporation executives might offer better benefits to retain talent.

This could not be further from the truth. Studies have indicated that unions have a positive effect from members to nonmembers.

In a study conducted measuring average household income from 1973-2015, researchers found that there was a robust correlation between income inequality and union decline. In fact, the study found that the wages of nonunion workers would have been 3-7% higher if union membership rates were noticeably higher.

This dramatic increase in income inequality can be attributed to multiple factors: increasing automation, workers being reduced to performing increasingly less-intricate tasks, outsourcing, college-degree preference and so on. However, as time has gone on and research has been conducted, unions have been shown to benefit society and counter income inequality via actions such as fighting for broader access to healthcare, which has been a key facet of income inequality.

Though unions are far weaker now than they have been historically, we have still seen their power: In Los Angeles, unions were able to help negotiate better pay and funding for school teachers. In West Virginia, unions were center-stage as the many teachers who wanted more money were granted by the governor.

As one can see, unions still have a part to play in our country and its' economy.

Unions remain integral to how we function. Without unions, many of the benefits, payment plans, and healthcare options would not exist. And that is why I am partial to unions: unions allowed for socioeconomic ascendancy, a better life for families, and a chance to live a good life despite not having the luxury of a college degree.

In a time where the world is saturated with degrees and not enough trade school workers, unions might just become essential yet again. I, for one, would welcome that. As a kid from Ohio, union workers are prevalent, and protecting them now and later is integral.

Support your local to rebuild the American dream.

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