If you knew you would die soon, how would you live your life? Or better yet, how would you want your life to be remembered?
Ernest Gaine’s A Lesson Before Dying takes place in 1940 Louisiana, where racism, segregation, and social injustices were not unusual in the Jim Crow south. The main characters of this novel include Jefferson - a young, uneducated laborer who is wrongly accused of the murder of a white storekeeper. There is also Grant, a college educated, school teacher who teaches in an underfunded all-black school full of tattered books and school materials. The lives of these two strangers seem completely unparalleled until Jefferson is sentenced to death row and Grant accepts the challenge of restoring Jefferson’s battered spirit during a trying time.
This novel will fire up some complex emotions that will have you comparing the state of 1940 Louisiana to the current state of 21st century America. Many moments within this novel are eerily similar to 2015 America. The reoccurring belligerent racism, unlawful imprisonment of an innocent black man, and conditions of underfunded schools in a poor minority area, will have you taking a closer look at your own communities. A Lesson Before Dying vividly showcases the flaws of the Jim Crow south while simultaneously holding up a mirror for today’s society by showing how the system is still persecuting minorities.
Throughout the novel, Jefferson and Grant both unsuspectingly help each other grow as men. This growth would not have been possible if neither of them chose to be receptive to the other’s message. Personally, I admired the growth of Grant. Despite his skepticism and doubt towards a hopeless society he matured and saw the fault in his own ways and began to reflect on how his negative attitude was a contributing factor in that unjust society. A Lesson Before Dying centers around change. In order for change to come about sometimes we must first begin with ourselves; which can often prove to be the hardest part.
We are all living while dying, but it is how we choose to live while dying that truly matters.
I have an extreme love for lotions and body creams! Two of my favorite places to stock up would have to be Victoria's Secret and Bath & Body Works during their semi-annual sales. The downside of store bought lotions is that you don't always know what exactly is in it. These companies forget that most people aren't fluent in chemistry and therefore don't have a full understanding of what exactly those long-named ingredients mean. Our bodies absorb about 60% percent of what we apply topically to our skin, so if your products contain harmful chemicals your body is absorbing it. These harsh chemicals will absorb into our blood streams and can eventually lead to numerous diseases. It's kind of like that saying "you are what you eat" - except in this case "you are what you apply."
As fall and winter begin to creep right on in (yes, i know we still have a few more weeks lol) I decided to share a special DIY with you all. During the fall & winter months our skin becomes pretty dull & dry and it seems near impossible to keep it moisturized when we're fighting against mother nature's chilly side. I am a huge fan of coconut oil. Coconut oil can do no wrong in my book. I often apply it fresh out the shower and then i'll throw on my favorite body butter. I love how moisturized my skin is when I do this, but I know sticking to natural products will prove to be more beneficial for me in the long run. So naturally, I want to share this simple body butter recipe, so we can all have soft, radiant, moisturized skin!
What You'll Need: