Monday, February 29, 2016

February Favorites 2016

My goodness, where does time go? I feel like such a grandma (not that there is anything wrong with grandmas, grandmas are cool) when I go on about how time is going by so fast, and "you kids should enjoy life" *shakes cane*
Book

I'm a big Lindsey Stirling fan, so when I heard that she was writing a book, I got quite excited. She reminds me a lot of my sister actually, which is probably one of the reasons I like her so much. The book was everything I expected and more. It was funny, truthful, and kind of heart wrenching at some parts. 
Music
I can't say Sleeping at Last again, can I? Oh! I know. 
Jamie Grace!!
Mary re-introduced me to her music, and then I found her YouTube videos, and then I found out how awesome of a person she is. She's really funny, totally relatable, and best of all, completely on fire for Christ! Her songs are so great to jam out, and the message in the songs are really uplifting and encouraging. Go you, Jamie Grace, keep being you.

Final Exams According To "Parks And Recreation"

Character
This month I've been getting all sorts of inspiration, all while trying to not let my ideas run away with my heart because I need my heart to be in the editing. I began planning two new book ideas, and with one of them came a character that has stolen my heart. She's just the sweetest, but she doesn't want anyone to know. I won't go on and on about her (believe me, I could), but I will say this. She is most definately like nothing I've ever written about before (even though I have yet to write about her). 

Drink
Blueberry tea for the win!! My mother recently ordered A LOT of blueberry tea, and that is okay with me. It's kind of the greatest thing since peanut butter. 

Food
It's been a really snacky month for me. I've snacked during the day more than ever, and I'm kind of proud of what I've been snacking on. I've never really considered myself a "health freak", but now I've kind of turned into one. My snacks are, instead of chips and crackers, celery and peanut butter, carrots, and best of all, apples.
TV Show

Parks and Recreation. A friend recommended it, but when I tried the first couple of episodes, I wasn't terribly impressed. A couple weeks later, I gave it another go, and it turned out to be one of the funniest shows I've seen in a while. I ended up binge-watching almost all of the episodes (some I did skip, 'cuz they went over the line for me), and I'm sad it's over. 


My sister and brother both started watching it shortly after I did, and now we can laugh and talk about it like the weirdly vague critics we strive to be.
Movie


I don't think this is technically a movie, but oh well. I enjoyed it very much. Colin Firth was what I was expecting when I first watched the 2005 P&P. Though I liked Keira Knightley's Elizabeth Bennet better than Jennifer Ehle, I felt she was more spunky. 

Note: I just remembered that today is a Leap Day!!

And that's the end of February Favorites. I will leave you with this picture of Einstein looking fabulous. 
Albert Einstein wearing fuzzy slippers. I just HAD to repin this.:

Toodlepip

Friday, February 26, 2016

Vandalism?

So...I just got back from a book signing. It was for a book I haven't even read, for an author I hadn't even heard of until three days ago. But it was awesome.

First I think you need a little backstory. Recently I've been looking for some good books to read that I normally wouldn't pick out on the shelf, Red Rising was one that I found recommended on a blog. I checked that out and then got to page six. I left to go to a friend's house, and it turns out that Lilly (one of the friends that was at said friend's house) was in the middle of reading the second book in that series. She also informed me that there was going to be a book signing at a bookstore near us. I decided to go.

Now you're all caught up. Since I haven't read the book before, I do not own a copy, nor do I want to buy a copy quite yet. What am I to have him sign? ....I do have the library's copy. 


Yeah... So I got the library book signed! He was cool about it, and I didn't go to jail for like...vandalism to a government owned item, so that's good. All in all, the book signing was really cool and the author himself was very witty and quick on his feet. 


That's the author. I didn't just include a random picture of some guy. I'm still on page six (trying to finish a different book), but for six pages, the book is already super good. 

I'm going to return the book, see what the librarians say, and possibly become a library hero. It was so fun, and I kind of want to start doing that as a thing. I could become the Phantom Autographer. Yeah, I wouldn't mind that. 

Toodlepip



Monday, February 22, 2016

Becoming Creative

For most of my life I have felt artistically dead. Now I know that writing and piano are technically an "art", but I mean in the sense that I cannot
- draw
- paint
- sew
- sculpt
- photograph
with any semblance of expertise or ease. All of my drawings look like flat potatoes, and nothing goes as planned. Recently, my mother and I decided to take up watercoloring. I had received a really nice set of watercolor pencils years before, and I finally wanted to use them. So we tried it, and found that it was actually something we enjoyed. Here I am three months later, feeling not too bad about my creations for someone who is "artistically dead".

A picture of some of my watercolor experiments was requested, so here they are!


I saw something like this on Pinterest and decided to try it.
I have others that are way better and more recent but I can't post them 'cuz they're a surprise for someone who reads my blog.

Through watercoloring, I can see that my creativity has grown. I now look at the world around me and see it as one giant mess of color and patterns and beauty whereas before I just saw it as a story waiting to be written. Now it's a mix of both. I also went all creative on my journal the other day.


Yes, those are Saturn quotes that I wrote 'cuz I'm a hopeless Sleeping At Last fanatic. I'm listening to them right now. I've started becoming more creative with my lunches. Instead of going for canned soup, I'm now making pesto tomato sandwiches that are awesome. I've been in a really creative mood lately. 
Playing with colors and the intensity of the hues is so relaxing. Watercolor is a really forgiving medium. Anywho, that's my watercolor/creativity post!

Toodlepip

Thursday, February 18, 2016

The (Made for me) Liebster Award

I was tagged by Errudessa at the The Flowering Vales to do the Liebster award!! This is my second time doing it, and I'm excited to answer these questions. I'm pretty sure someone had me in mind when they thought up these questions. Without any further ado,

Here are the rules:
- Thank the blog who nominated you and link back to them
- Nominate up to 11 other bloggers to receive the award.  To be eligible, they need to have 200 followers or less.
- Answer 11 questions from the blogger who nominated you.
- Tell your readers 11 random facts about yourself.
- Give your nominees 11 questions to answer on their blog when they post their nomination.


On to the questions:

#1 – If you would live anywhere in the world, where?
I am conflicted. 
     

I have always wanted to live in Morocco, but Greece is another dream of mine, as well as Ireland. I suppose...I would want to live in Ireland, but visit Greece and Morocco often? That works.  

#2 – What dream occupation did you have as a child?
I have only ever wanted to do two things. The first thing was tap-dancing. For about six months, when I was five, I wanted to be a tap dancer so badly. My parents bought me little tap-dancing shoes that I never took off. After that six month phase was over, I was back to wanting to be a writer, and I haven't stopped yet. That is my dream job. 

#3 – If you could only wear one color for the rest of your life, which color?
Blue, for sure. It's my favorite color

#4 – Favorite new book?
Jurassic Park. It was really engaging and suspenseful without being terribly gruesome or scary. 

#5 – Do you prefer to watch foreign entertainment with subtitles, dubs, or you don’t like to watch foreign entertainment?
Other than the usual "Oh let's change the Disney movie to French and laugh at how different it is.", I've only seen one movie in a foreign language (with subtitles). It was Les Intouchables, and it was a really touching movie. I definitely wasn't expecting it to be that good, but it was.

#6 – Favorite fairytale?
Peter Pan. I've been in love with that story for a long time. 

#7 – If you decided to learn another language, what language would you choose?
Fun story: I'm learning Gaelic. 

#8 – Books or E-readers?
Books. I have nothing against E-readers, but I prefer to have the book that I can turn the pages of.

#10 – Your favorite real historical lady?
Joan of Arc, Freya Stark, or Amelia Earhart. 

#11 – If a new planet was discovered and you got to name it, what name would you choose?
I would name it Pluto 2.0 because I want Pluto to become a planet again! #neverforget 

Okay...11 random facts.
#1 I like country music.
#2 I've bungee jumped.
#3 I've tried to see if I could fly after a really convincing dream. 
#4 I used to not like tea.
#5 I own a rabbit named Toffee (he's the cutest).
#6 I can play 30 full songs on the piano.
#7 I used to not like musicals.
#8 For the longest time, I wasn't allowed to watch 90% of Disney movies. 
#9 I dream about my future a lot.
#10 I...am forgetting everything about myself.
#11 I am reading four books at the same time right now.

Okay, now for the questions. 

1. How did you pick your blog name?
2. What makes you really happy?
3. Have you ever traveled outside of the country?
4. What are you most passionate about?
5. What is your favorite book? And why?
6. Who has been your biggest influence? 
7. If you were in jail, who would you call?
8. What is your favorite movie?
9. What is a song that you can listen to over and over?
10. What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
11. If you could leave your family to go to any fictional world, would you?

There we have it! The Liebster Award. *bows* Thanks again to Errudessa. 

Toodlepip

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Beautiful People: Valentine's Day

Today is a day that I usually ignore, for I have no use for Valentines Day nor the sentiments that are expressed on this very day. I tell those around me that I love them, and I do that every day of the year, not on one particular day.


Me being the person that I am, I couldn't resist answering a couple questions that had to do with my characters. I love talking about my characters in a way that I don't actually have to talk is easier. Also, Sprig and Tyler are the best. *cue writer feels* 

I'm not going to write a synopsis because synopsis' are from the deepest, darkest corner of where bad feelings grow scare me. They're so hard to write! Without further ado, let's do this!
Quick Note: I found this tag on Sunshine and Scribblings and Further Up, Further In.

1. How did they first meet?
They unofficially met on the pirate ship Sprig was Navigator of. They really met when Griffen (the captain) forces her to work with Tyler. 

2. What were their first impressions of each other?
Weeeeeell, not great. Tyler made a comment he didn't mean, Sprig took it badly and started disliking him from there, though they slowly grow to become close friends.

3. How long have they been a couple?
Hmm, I've written two books with Sprig as the MC. There's no point where they're really a couple (does the epilogue count?), but Tyler would say that they had been together since they danced, then Sprig would roll her eyes. 

4. How committed/loyal are they to each other? Would they break up over a secret or a disagreement? Could stress drive them apart? Would they die for each other?
That's funny you ask that. There is a certain secret that Tyler has that almost drove them apart, but then other events happened (someone died) and Sprig realized how ridiculous she was acting by being angry. Tyler would die for Sprig in a heartbeat. Sprig would take a second and then die for Tyler.  

5. List 5 “food quirks” they know about each other. (Ex: how they take their coffee, if they’re allergic to something, etc….and feel free to mention other non-food quirks!)
She will eat just about anything, so Tyler gives her all the food he doesn't like/doesn't want. He's a huge fan of chocolate and gets easily distracted by it, and she uses that to her advantage. Hot chocolate is like a safety blanket to her (another long story), and he makes a lot for her because of that. Non-food quirk: She can't dance, so he has to teach her. *fangirling* 

6. Does anyone disapprove of their relationship?
Yes. Sprig is technically a princess, and the king (not her father, another long story) believes that she should be associating with people in her social class, though he doesn't insist upon it. He just quietly disapproves. 

7. What would be an ideal date?
Just walking along the beach and talking/spending a night with the Traders (essentially gypsies) during the festivities. 
 :
8. What are their personality dynamics? Similar? Contrasting? Do they fight a lot or mesh perfectly?
Sprig is quiet and more of a dreamer than a doer. She is serious and kind of meanly sarcastic, but by spending time with Tyler, she slowly gets a sense of humor. She is also quite stubborn. 
Tyler is a complete jokester, but unfailingly kind towards others. He believes that every moment is a gift and should be acted upon as such. He's very easygoing. He's learned a lot through his life as he's moved around. People are afraid of him (another long story), but Sprig doesn't know why (that's the secret that almost forces them apart). They are both better when they're together, but can still be on their own without being at a loss.

9. What have been their best and worst moments together as a couple?
Best: When Tyler taught Sprig how to dance, when he took care of her after she was a bit...drunk, and when she told him she didn't care about what he had done.
Worst: When she began to doubt him, when he was keeping the secret from her, and after he kissed her and things were super awkward between them. 

10. Where do they see themselves and their relationship in the next few years?
They both have different visions of where they will be. 
Sprig: She's not sure of what the future holds, and she isn't sure if she can even have a future with Tyler. Frankly, she just wants to be in the moment and not try to speculate. 
Tyler: He likes to think that she will be able to stay and that when everything calms down, they can start a life together. He plans on asking her to marry him when they're a couple years older. 

Well that was fun! I should post about my characters more often. I might have to be a Beautiful People regular. 

Toodlepip

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Who? Mua?

This post is all about...me!!! ...Yeah, I know. I'm conceited.

#1
YES.:

This is actually something I've gotten in trouble for quite a few times. There are just those certain books that pull you in, and you can't put them down. *coughThe Unwandedscough* 

#2
 :

There is a small bookstore that I love going to called Homeschool Potpourri. It's a maze of narrow walkways and stacks of books falling from unorganized and overflowing shelves. It is the best for playing hide-and-go-seek or just spending a rainy afternoon in. They have a corner towards the back full of wonderfully old books. I've found one from 1907 that was falling apart at the seams, but it was so pretty. I'll just stand back there stroking the soft covers and smelling the musty pages. They're beautiful.

#3
Da best:

There is no flavor more sweet, refreshing, and wonderful than mint chocolate chip. It's been my favorite for as long as I can remember, and I don't know if that will ever change. It is the best flavor. Ever. End of story.

#4
Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee... Sorry, what?:
I am a teenager. I am mature. I am responsible, and there is no way that I would be childish enough as to play with an office chair as a toy. OH! IT SPINS!! 

#5
story of my life:

I get worked up over something then I get even more worked up that I got worked up then I start to hate myself for getting worked up over the fact that I got worked up and...you get the idea.

#6
 :
I am not sarcastic one bit. Nope, totally not what I'm like. ;) 

#7

 :
This is the story of my life. I get attached to people quite easily, and as soon as I do, all I want is to talk with them, but then there is that little voice in my head that says, "You can't do that. That's clingy and creepy." I end up over analyzing every little thing I say, and it's a mess.

#8
Yup:

One of the best things about being home alone is that I can turn up the music however loud I want, and have my own little rock concert, except mostly a Broadway and Disney rock concert with a dash of Fall Out Boy and Panic! at the Disco
I do!:




This is it. This is exactly what happens. I happen to have the voice of a dying seal, so I usually just end up lip-syncing. 








#9
Definitely.:

I am the most awkward talker ever. I end up speaking mostly in sentence fragments and frustrated sighs as I scramble for words. If I could just write down everything, that'd be great. 

#10
 :

When I was younger, I had so many imaginary friends, most of them being intelligent animals.
Let's see, I remember Charlotte was my imaginary friend for the LONGEST time. She was a cougar who was essentially my bodyguard. She and I did everything together.
Another was Guacem. He was a raccoon who was a soldier. He later died in battle, and I decorated his little bark and log grave every Sunday with flowers that I had picked. 
Chip was a chipmunk (so imaginative, I know). He too was a soldier. 
Then I got older and my imaginary friends became characters that I wrote about. I consider my characters imaginary friends these days.

There you have it, ten facts about me that you never asked for. :)

Toodlepip

Sunday, February 7, 2016

"Have you no compassion for my poor nerves?"

I finally did the thing. I watched Pride and Prejudice.


It was odd to see Johanna Mason from Hunger Games and Elizabeth Swann? from Pirates of the Caribbean waltz around with President Snow.

My first impression of Elizabeth Bennet: She's awesome. Anyone who can read while walking and not run into trees is extremely skilled in my book. And her sass!

My first impression of Mr. Darcy: He's a bit of a dandy prat.

"A Miss Bennet, Miss Bennet, Miss Bennet, and, uh, Mrs. Bennet."

Most of the women seem either stupid or very mean. I don't know if that's how it truly was, but if it was...then I am very happy that I don't live in that era.

"What excellent boiled potatoes."

Mr. Collins is CreeperCreepton from Creepville. "It is my intention, if I may be so bold, to stay close to you the entire evening." If that had come from anyone else, it might have been sweet, but Mr. Collins is just creepy.

You know, everybody talks about how romantic and wonderful Mr. Darcy is. His name has become the cliche of a perfect man. I can't find him appealing in any manner. He's cold, withdrawn, and much too blunt and self-centered. I can't imagine how she finds him at all intriguing or attractive.
TV shows and books have ruined me. My expectations and standards are impossibly high.



And Mr. Darcy is a pacer. I despise pacers... They make me nervous with all that walking back and forth. 

Mr. Bingley is the only halfway decent man in this movie. I have yet to read the book, and I'm not even sure I will get around to it, but I imagine it's the same in the book. 

Okay, he did do some nice things for Elizabeth. He may care for her, but his cold and austere actions are not excused. I don't think I'll ever be able to get behind this story because of the ridiculous actions of the characters that I could never imagine being able to relate to. At all.

Though I have to admit, those last couple of scenes were really sweet. I imagine that happening to me, me finding my Prince Charming or Mr. Darcy or whatever you want to call him, when in reality, I wouldn't be a Snow White or an Elizabeth. I mean, if an attractive guy so much as looks at me, it's kind of...

Like this. Exactly like this.
Well, if Elizabeth is happy with Mr. Darcy then good for her.

Anywho, I can finally say that I've seen Pride and Prejudice. ....and it was better than I thought.

Toodlepip

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Disney Movies: Underrated Edition

There are so many Disney/Pixar movies, and sometimes the bigger ones push movies that are just as good, out of the spotlight. I have a soft spot for movies that are really good but not well-known.

As a family, we never watched a whole lot of Disney. I mean, sure, we'd watch the princess movies and be aware that there were new movies coming out, but it wasn't until...about a year ago that I started to surround myself in all things Disney and really see most of the movies.

Today we're going to talk about my favorite (underrated) Disney movies, 'kay?

#1. Treasure Planet
This is not exactly a surprise. This is my alltime favorite Disney movie, forever and ever.

Just look at that! It's stunning. 
The animation is beautiful, the characters are amazing and really well developed for a "kids" movie, and there is no romantic subplot with the main character. The setting is so unique, and I love the take on Treasure Island. I cannot emphasis my love for this movie enough. It brings such a different style of storytelling into the whole Disney mix. Also....Silver is the greatest, and BEN, and Morph, and all the characters. Usually there is at least one character that I find a bit unnecessary/annoying, but not in this movie. The only characters I find annoying were the ones made intentionally so. I could keep going on and on about this movie, but we don't want this post to go on forever. :)

#2. Atlantis: The Lost Empire
This movie... I have so much praise for this movie.

Funny story: We weren't allowed to watch this when we were younger because of, and I quote, "mystic magic foo-foo". Granted, a lot has changed since then, but I always get a kick when I remember that.

This movie has a lot of stuff going for it, mostly fantastic one-liners, but that's not all. Kida is one of my favorite Disney princesses, and yes, I do consider her a Disney princess.


See? I like my female characters able to take care of themselves. This movie has such a charm about it. The team that finds Atlantis is a bunch of oddball weirdos that fit so well together. They become like a tiny family, and I personally am a huge fan of families like that.

It's a truly fantastic movie that not a lot of people have watched, they've heard of it, but never watched it. 

#3. The Emperor's New Groove
Now this is one that I had classified under the "too silly" category. One day I was bored, surfing Netflix to find something to watch, and decided to finally watch it. I was surprised to say the least. It was actually quite funny. It definitely had it's more silly moments, but for the most part it was really enjoyable, and I don't know why more people don't regard highly. 


One thing that Disney is really good at is making the humor both funny to children and funny to adults. Most of this film's dialogue feels loose and natural, like it was improvised, but with the cast of characters being so moldable, it adds a lot. 

#4. Pocahontas
Pocahontas:

Most of my life I kind of thought of this movie as silly and not really worth my time for being so historically inaccurate, but then something clicked. When I re-watched it, I ended up enjoying it quite a bit. The animation is stunning and manages to be both vibrant and extremely tranquil. I've accepted that Disney wasn't trying to have an accurate historical representation. If they were, then there would be plague, death, and no romance, so it would be a very non-Disney Disney movie. The songs are beautiful and wonderful for any moment in life, *disagrees with sister* "So you think I'm an ignorant savage..." 
*washes dishes* "Have you ever heard the wolf cry to the bluuue corn moooon?!" 
This movie also gave us this gift.

How many times do I have to say this?! NEVER pause a Disney movie!!!!! XD:
This is a treasure. 
#5. Lilo and Stitch
I am a huge fan of this movie. It is perfect in almost every way, and I don't think it gets enough love. The music is amazing, and the one-liners are the greatest.
 Lilo and Nani have a very real relationship...you know, minus the aliens. Nani is amazing. She supports her sister and does everything she can to make her happy. She doesn't tell Lilo that she can't do anything, and she put her own dreams (surfing championship) on hold for her little sister. 

Stitch is adorable, and a sweet character underneath all the...alien six hands thingie. 

But let's talk about the real MVP. 
 

David is such a great guy!!! He steps back and lets Nani deal with her stuff while making sure that she knows he is there for her. He loves Lilo and accepts Stitch. Just look at them! They're already a family!
 

I think they're adorable.

And that concludes the Disney movies that I think are most under-rated.

Toodlepip