Politics Check-Up

I have avoided politics for only a few days now, yet I keep being dragged back into it. Everyone wants to argue (not debate) about borders and Donald Trump. I am not going to talk about politics, I just want to talk about peace.


What is happiness? How do you obtain it? Ask yourself, “am I happy?” If arguing about politics and Donald Trump is the first thing to pop in your mind, then you probably are not that happy. I invite you to take a break and think about what is actually important to you. Politics are important to this country, but it is not everything. I am pretty sure that politics are not included in Heaven. (who knows?)

I am a republican and conservative. I am allowed to say that. I do not care if you are a liberal, conservative, democrat, republican, muslim, christian, buddhist, male, female, or even a dog. All I want is for this country to survive, and for everyone to find happiness within it.


This country is amazing and I see that the world is catching up. I hope the whole world can experience the freedoms that we have in the United States of America.



Financial Freedom

Money. Everyone has to deal with it, and everyone views and treats it differently. What if I told you that financial problems are self inflicted? Would you believe me? What if I told you that financial problems are due to a wrong MIND SET? Then would you believe me? I want to introduce you to a book that will change your life. It is called RICH DAD, POOR DAD by Robert Kiyosaki.

Click the photo to get a copy!

This is the book that changed it all for me. I realized that I needed to change my mind set, and my game plan. I would not settle for a life of poverty. I decided that I would not even settle for a life in the middle class. This book will help you realize that the lower and middle classes are stuck in their ways and are wasting their time. People are rich for a reason. They do not just inherit billions and billions of dollars. They work hard for their wealth, but not in a 9 to 5 job. This book will teach you about owning a business, investing, real estate, and passive income.

This book is not a GET RICH QUICK scheme. It is an educational book that will take you out of your current mind set, and help you see the beautiful horizon of FINANCIAL FREEDOM.

I HIGHLY suggest this book AND all of the other books that Robert T. Kiyosaki has written (especially MIDAS TOUCH, by Robert T. Kiyosaki and DONALD TRUMP) I have read them all. Want a copy? Click on the books below!

-Riley Hoogendoorn


I Quit Politics

I don’t know about you, but I am tired of all the politics lately. Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, all of these (my favorite social medias) are plagued with political statuses and arguements. I have strong political views, but I need a break. I have decided to quit politics for a week.

I came across this decision when I heard a story that a coworker told me today about people who blocked a freeway in protest (over what?!) and blocked everyone, including an AMBULANCE. If your political views move you to cause chaos in the streets, then YOU are destroying America, not the thing you are protesting against. One word defines these people…”BLIND.”

Take this week to review your political views. Ask yourself, “do my views harm Anerica?”, “am I currently disturbing the peace through pointless and violent parades?”

I am not saying protesting is wrong, there are plenty of things that are worth protesting. Just make sure you know WHY you are protesting, and the laws of it. Any protest built by anger is not a “peaceful protest,” it is a riot.

I will post about my week FREE OF POLITICS in exactly 7 days. PEACE!!!

Need an iPhone charger? Order here! Just click the picture.


The Burg.

It may seem that the music scene in BYU-I is small, but you just have to know where to look. Tonight, I am at The Burg, a local hamburger joint that offers live music performed by students. These performers all have a style of their own, from classic rock to anything considered indie. Small building. Big performances.

(photo above: Jessica Tolibas performing live at The Burg.)

Props to The Burg for giving students the opportunity to perform and make a name for themselves. It’s gigs like this that keep the local music scene alive.

                                         Send someone an Amazon Gift Card!!! Click the picture below!


If you can dream it, you can do it.

“If you can dream it, you can do it,” said Walt Disney. These words seem to be magical, almost. It gives hope that whatever you may be striving to accomplish, truly is possible. At least.. that is what I think when I read it. I am always caught up in so many projects at once: blogging, producing music, homework, studying, working, and finding time for family and friends, so this quote helps me realize that my dreams are real.

WHAT are your dreams? Have you made PLANS to accomplish them? WHEN will they be accomplished? Recently, I have learned that effective goals are the foundation of success. New Years resolutions and also daily goals help you stay on track to being the best person you can be, and keep you focused on what you dream to be possible.

I want you to make a physical (or digital) list of all your goals for 2017. Whether your goals are financial, physical, etc… write them down and LOOK AT THIS LIST DAILY!!! Do not lose this list, this will be your map to success. Make sure your goals are realistic yet stretch your potential and push your limits. FIGHT for what you want to accomplish.

I read an article the other week about how to max your output. It was so simple, all the author said was to wake up early. That’s it. Wake up a couple hours earlier than you normally do. This time is all yours. You can use it to do something related to your goals that you wrote down. Personally, I wake up early every day and write an article. This is how I try to accomplish my dreams every day. Your goals will not be fulfilled without some sort of sacrifice.

3 tips for success:

1. Wake up early

2. Look at list of goals daily

3. Dream about it

This list will help you stay motivated and actually do productive things in order to achieve your dreams. You can do whatever you want to do, if you really want to.

-Riley Hoogendoorn

Want to achieve your exercise goals? Click the picture below!

Trump Immigration

The world erupted as President Trump issued the order to detain all refugees coming from the Middle East. Crowds gathered in protest in local airports and even the streets. Why such an outburst against immigration? Is the USA not a target of terrorist groups spread across the Middle East and the rest of the world? In this blog post I wish to clarify some points FOR and AGAINST the recent immigration struggle.


“We Are All Immigrants,” read a sign being held by a protester at the John F. Kennedy International Airport. Other signs read, “Resist,” “Disobey,” and “Let them in.” The crowds gathered at these airports obviously have a resisting-spirit to them. The laws are being challenged. Are we not all as citizens expected to uphold and obey the law? Without law, there is chaos and anarchy. Then again, if the people do not challenge and push law, the government begins to overwhelm and take over. Yet in this situation, I believe that the immigration/deportation executive order is perfectly understandable. Our country has been at war and has been a target of the Middle East for nearly a decade. We need to take precautions in letting people roam freely across our country. I feel that a stricter interview and background check should take place before allowing a refugee to enter America. I do believe in helping refugees and anyone who needs help, so given the current situation, there needs to be some form of background analysis to determine who is an ally and who is an enemy.

The terrorist threat we face in America is real. Did it just vanish overnight? No. Are people still being killed by bombings connected to terrorist cells? Yes. This is the reason President Trump has given such an urgent order, to protect our country and citizens. It may seem inhumane, mean, or even despicable, but our country needs to maintain its security.


What would you do in this situation if you were the president of the United States of America? If I was the president, I would allow all refugees to enter and be taken care of, BUT… I would pay close attention to any suspicious activities. I would rather be safe than sorry. I hope that President Trump can find a more realistic way to allow refugees to inhabit our country. It is true that our country is built on immigrants, and that our country is a “melting pot,” this is our culture. Our culture is a mixed one, we cannot claim that our culture is more than 300 years old, but that is what is so amazing about America, we are new. We are revolutionary. A country as revolutionary as ours is bound to take risks, and also be the target of older countries who are not as developed.

We must help all refugees, and also help our country.

-Riley Hoogendoorn

What is a Kindle? Click the picture below!!!


Life as a Platypus

You wake up in a small Australian river, you swim to the shore and waddle up to safety. You take a look around and notice that no one is around. You are utterly alone. Off in the distance you see something scurrying into a bush. You realize it is a snake. Your hair stands up on your furry neck, your otter feet begin to dig into the dirt, your duck bill quivers and you can feel the venom building up in your poison duct. What are you? You are a Platypus.

You decide to avoid the fight and you run back into the water and swim towards your nest using your powerful beaver tail. You dive deep into the abyss hoping your camouflaged fur hides you. As you dive down, you glance to your side and see a shiny looking fish. You quickly react and snap your duck bill at it. The fish is instantly paralyzed from your venom, and you eat a delicious fishy snack.

You find your way back to your nest, safe at last. Why are you alone? Where are the others? Well, I will tell you. They are dead. The Platypus is an endangered species. Most of them have been killed for their fur and other random features. The Platypus is only native in Australia. This makes it more difficult to preserve them in other locations. Will the world be negatively affected if extinction of the Platypus occurs? I really do not know. All I know is that I don’t want them to go extinct any time soon.



Top 3 Endangered Animals

Your Favorite Animals, Close to Extinction.

     Some animals are closer to extinction than others. I have made a list of the top 3 endangered animals that the world actually cares about, and are currently taking action to preserve.


     This is one of the most iconic and recognizable animal on the endangered species list. Tigers were once very common across Asia and the Middle East, but have lost 93% of their population within 100 years due to poaching. It seems as if every zoo and circus owns at least one Tiger, so it would seem that they are not going extinct! I believe that this is the reason WHY they are going extinct. Tigers are no longer viewed as wild animals, but as entertainment.



Black Rhino 

     The black rhino is actually grey. These animals are native to eastern and southern Africa. Black Rhinos are targeted by poachers for ivory (their horn). The West Black Rhino has been declared extinct in 2011, this is one of three sub-species of Black Rhino in Africa. This shows how close they truly are to disappearing forever.



Giant Panda

     Giant Panda translates to “big bear cat” in Chinese. Pandas are native to south central China. There are now approximately 1,800+ Giant Pandas  in Asia, so they are now declared “not endangered”. Don’t think for a second that this species is not IN DANGER though. Their numbers have risen in the last 10 years due to constant preservation efforts of charities in both China and the United States, but are in constant danger from poachers and people wanting their own pet panda (which I want as well…).



     I know that we do not run into these animals on a daily basis, so not everyone can go out everyday and try to save some pandas, but preserving animals can be shown through action AND mindset. Actions can be donating and word-of-mouth, mindset can be posting something on social media about endangered species, or being on the constant prowl for poaching activities. Unless you want to lose these animals, DO YOUR PART!!!

-Riley Hoogendoorn

Cure for Anxiety

About 12 years ago when I was living in Tucson, Arizona, my mom came up to me and my brothers and said, “There are bull dog puppies for sale in the news paper, we are going to go look at them later today.” She emphasized the word “LOOK”, but we already knew what that really meant was going to happen. We pulled up into the drive way of an old, rundown mobile home. We walked to the front yard and noticed an upside-down little swimming pool that was propped up on one side. The moment we noticed it, a pack of pit bull puppies came running up to greet us. We began to pet them and see which one we wanted. All of the puppies were hyper and kept biting our fingers. While examining the puppies, one came up to us from the back of the pack, and just stared at us as if she was saying, “take me home!!!”. We picked her up, payed the owner $100, and were on our way.


We decided to name her KD (like, “Caitie”). She is the most protective, sweetest, and smartest dog that I have ever known. She turned out to actually be a Pit Bull/ Labrador Retriever mix. An amazing thing happened though, I realized that I did not ever experience anxiety while I was with her. I had always suspected that pets help with anxiety, but I did not know to what extent. Dogs are never judging, hateful, or spiteful but always happy and forgiving. With these characteristics in mind, I realized that there is no room for negativity or anxiety of any kind while with a dog. Anxiety is worry, and worry is based off of negative experiences. So if you eliminate negativity, you can also reduce anxiety! This is my theory on dogs relating to anxiety.

So to anyone who is thinking about adopting a puppy, I highly recommend it. KD is now 12 years old, and we have experienced a life time of adventures together. I will tell you all about these adventures in future blog posts, but this is all for now.

This is KD.


-Riley Hoogendoorn

Top 3 Dog Myths

Top 3 Dog Myths

I worked with animals for a long time, and I have came across hundreds of commonly believed myths about dogs. Does a dry nose mean my dog is sick? Aren’t dog’s mouths cleaner than humans? Don’t dogs only see in black and white? For my first blog ever, I wish to clear up some of these myths.

A dry nose means a dog is sick. False.

A dog’s nose does not directly relate to whether he is sick or not. A dog’s nose is expected to be dry when he wakes up, digs a hole in the dirt, or even when going on a walk. This myth is from the Distemper Virus which was very common a while ago. A dog with distemper might have a dry nose, but this does not mean that dogs that have dry noses are sick.


A dog’s mouth is cleaner than a human’s mouth. False.

A dog’s mouth is definitely dirtier than yours. A dog’s mouth is full of bacteria, most of this bacteria is dog-specific (meaning it is for the benefit of the dog). A lot of this bacteria is from its environment, the floor, the toilet, the backyard, etc. So do not play-it-cool if your dog accidentally licks you in the mouth. Automatically assume that your dog just transferred millions of nasty germs and particles to you in one foul swoop.


Dogs are color blind. Kind of false.

Have you ever noticed that dog parks and dog training parks are in blue and yellow? This is because these are the 2 colors that dogs can most easily see. Their retinas (color processing part of the eye ball) are stimulated and process the colors yellow and blue. They are blind to other colors, but they are not actually “color blind,” just “color absent.”