Saturday, November 26, 2016

Christmas Season Bucket List

~Make a real tiny gingerbread house (cottage rather). I've pinned so many ideas. I want to use mostly icing and chocolate

~Participate again in the Christmas cookie exchange

~Try a couple variations of hot chocolate

~Bake a fruitcake for Mamau and Papau

~Watch Christmas singalong from my childhood (I found in the $5 bin at Walmart, I think)

~Bake some other Christmasy goodies

~Make chocolate truffles again for Christmas Eve

~Make shimmery snowflakes for my room; if possible decorate my own mini real tree

~12 Days of Christmas blogging (I don't know if I even want to do this though . . . as long at it isn't a burden)

~Buy, make, and wrap all gifts by the 21st

~Read Christmas stories

~Watch a couple of classic Christmas movies

~If possible, sew a Christmas dress; if not, complete another Christmas project

Friday, November 25, 2016

Link Love: Drama Llama

Sometimes we need to laugh about the drama, sometimes its too ridiculous and too continual to take seriously

Cut the Drama Lighthearted vlog about drama

But sometimes we do need to take it seriously

Being in the Know Is Not a Virtue (p.s. it actually can be a vice). We all have curiosity (otherwise known as nosiness, busybodyness, etc.)

A lot of drama is cause by intentional misunderstanding and misleading and being easily offended and slow to listen, but sometimes people have difficulty interpreting and need to slow down and ask when they really care. And others may need to explain.

A Tough Bible Verse to Inspire Shutting Up

And of course, Pinterest helps explain everything

THINK I've seen this on signs for this house, a good idea

Those who start drama and my sympathy

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Sponsor a Millennial and Link Fun

I'm constantly collecting bookmarks, and since I enjoy link posts (sometimes a source of the bookmarks), I thought I would make link posts occasionally. I'd prefer mine to be themed though, so this one is about generations, generation divide, etc.

I'm still not tired of finding new satires on millennials.* So, here is another one some of our friends mentioned.

Here is an extremely interesting division of all the U.S. generations (I found this after wondering how many generations back any American could trace his lineage, assuming the furthest limit).

This is a main cause for millennial issues. Also, hilarious, and points out parental issues (although you can have brats without material indulgence, or any indulgence at all) . . . and the snowball effect. This is common sense, people. Or rather should be.

Can you score well on these 8th grade exams? I printed them out and started, then realized I should just use them for reference to study!

*I'm a millennial, I realize, and I don't like when the boomers bash us, um, I don't think the people responsible for raising us and our parents should talk about irresponsibility, ya know?! I've read several criticisms of that generation's selfishness . . . snowball effect. Nevertheless, I am usually disgusted with my generation and the one after that (Gen Z, post-Millennial, iGen, whatever you want to call it), I know some most criticisms are true (I just don't swallow the disbelief, self-righteousness, and irresponsibility of the older generations, um, sorry, its pretty easy to figure out how it happened). Anyway, when people hilariously point out the absurdities of my generation, I enjoy it mightily (and I know I deserve a lot of it too).

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Election Day

I will hopefully be hunkering down and avoiding the Internet until the election is over.

I decided to edit my moralizing posts. Journaling and discussing within the family are the places for that. I don't really want to read that from other people, and most of the Internet is not a good place for discussion and many topics shouldn't be widely discussed. Unless you are a polite, good, brilliant, ethical, well-informed, well-researched, well-reasoned intellectual, please don't spout opinions on grave subjects of which you know very little. We shouldn't even form opinions on these issues without serious research, study, discussion (with trusted people), and thought. We don't need more unprofessional opinions!

Then there is the issue of privacy; these are MY personal opinions, and I'm not a professional. And did I mention that we don't need more unprofessional opinions?!!!!!!! Now, this is my blog, and I am my own censor, so I will decide how much I will limit myself. I will probably post links and maybe small posts.

Oh, yeah, and the Bible has a lot to say about too many words. A lot. Way more than this over-touted, "silence is wrong." Sometimes it might be, but that is hardly ever the issue. Same with the issue of anger and the so-called command to "righteous" anger; I've seen plenty of that too.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

My Favorite Songs from My Favorite Musicals

I started writing out my comment on this post, and I realized it would be far too long and should make a post.

Favorite musical numbers from live-action musicals

·       Sound of Music: the Ländler, “Edelweiss,” and “My Few of My Favorite Things”
·       Seven Brides for Seven Brothers: “Goin Courtin”
·       Les Mis: (not a huge fan; I’ve also only seen the movie): “Do You Hear the People Sing”
·       Phantom: “Think of Me Fondly,” “All I ask of You,” “The Music of the Night,”  And, well most of the songs
·       Music Man: “Good Night My Someone”

Disney/Animated Favorites

·       Tangled: “At Last I See the Light” and “Kingdom Dance”
·       Beauty and the Beast: “Prologue” music and “Transformation”
·       How to Train Your Dragon 2: “For the Dancing and the Dreaming”
·       Swan Princess: “Far Longer than Forever”
·       Anastasia: “Once Upon a December”
·       Tarzan: “You’ll Be in My Heart”

I like other Disney songs, but I think these are my favorites.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Classic Hollywood Celebration: Friendly Persuasion Review

I am linking up here again.

Former friends introduced me to Friendly Persuasion years ago. I watched it by myself first and enjoyed it and then more recently watched it several times with my mom and sisters. This 1956 film features actors Gary Cooper and Anthony Perkins and actress Dorothy McGuire (whom we've seen in the 1960 The Swiss Family Robinson which we also love). The film is very loosely based on Jessamyn West's novel of the same name.*

The story is set in Civil War era Indiana and features a rural Quaker family trying to live in a quiet way and being forced to come to terms with the fact that the forces of war are approaching close to home.** Each of the mature or maturing members of the Birdwell household has his or her own particular views and connections to the war, and this produces some familial discord. Despite all this family love, faith, and honor prevail.

Although the overarching plot leads to conflict with marauding Rebel troops, much of the film depicts the day-to-day struggles, activites and idiosyncries in this Quaker household. I love the depictions of the familial, neighborly, and outside world interactions of the Birdwells and how differently each member reacts to their Quaker responsibilities. Each person is a distinct individual and yet the conflicts tend to be small and humorous (until the end) and are always resolved.

As an older movie, the film posseses some drawbacks frequent to this period including noticeably fake scenery, not noticeably period accurate clothing, etc. The music underwhelmed me, nothing unique or heart-stirring. The plot is more a string of vignettes leading to a climax as the war touches the Birdwells with graduating intensity than a perfectly wrough plot, so at times some scenes can feel a bit random. Nevertheless, I love the portrayal of the simple, homespun daily life interspersed with plenty of humor and a little love.

If you need drama or a comprehensive Civil War plot, this movie is not for you. But if you enjoy simple, sweet stories and are interested in this unique perspective of mid-19th century American life and its gentle perspective on the war, you may enjoy the film. I had no knowledge at all of the story (a level of ignorance which I often love for books and movies) and love "homey" stories and so I appreciated the simple portrayal of Quakerism** and the war. Nothing too complicated or nuanced needing an intellectual conversation, but resting sweetness and simplicity.

*I loved the movie, so I got the book from the library, but after looking through it, I could see very little connection to the story I liked and decided I wasn't interested enough to try reading it.
**Because I must ALWAYS give a history lesson, I must point out that Quakers were not traditionally formal pacifists; they did place a greater value on overall kindness and humanness, but the stringent pacifism came far later. I learned this from Albion's Seed, and I truly cannot recommend that book enough.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

A Celebration of Classic Hollywood Week: Film Review of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers

I'm linking up at An Old-Fashioned Girl for A Celebration of Classic Hollywood Week. Since I seem to be either criticizing or incoherently fangirling or only noting a few details when I write about movies, I thought I'd better look up some more formal guidelines for movie reviewing. I found two printouts from the Thompson Writing Program at Duke University (this and this). I just used the first handout and very generally, but I found it helpful.

My sister and I watched Seven Brides for Seven Brothers at a sleep-over with friends as young preteens or teens. I felt a bit shocked at what I then considered its coarseness ("Bless Your Beautiful Hide . . ."). You have no idea, little me. I don't think I warmed up considerably as the film progressed either. But later, after hearing others mention it, I tried it again, and then even later watched it with my mom and sisters. I own it now, and we love it.

Anyway, this 1954 musical features Jane Powell and Howard Keel (I've watched him in Annie Get Your Gun recently, and he looks SO different without a mustache) as well as several Broadway dancers and singers and an actress who later played Lois Lane in one of the Superman films (this we discovered after watching it with extended family and an aunt recognized the actress; I love how movies can be such an interactive experience). The film's main plot revolves around the unconventional (what an understatement!) wooing of "seven slumachy back woodsmen" e.g. the Pontipee brothers in frontier era Oregon Territory. The brothers of course run into conflict with the proper townsmen, but eventually all the (wild, sometimes lawbreaking) boys marry their (incredibly fickle) girls.

This movie is so silly, fun, and hilarious. Several of the songs are quite humorous and others are quite sentimental (these are NOT our favorites; we skip some out of boredom). Because Adam marries first, his wife Millie takes on the first part of civilizing the brothers, with considerably mixed results! The boys' own ladies complete the polishing work. Millie, Gideon, and Hannah teach Adam his own separate lesson. I love the hilarity of course, but I also like the sweet familial and romantic scenes mixed in all the drama and fun.

As is typical of old musicals, this film is short and the story is simple. Only a few of the brothers and only one of the wives show any great characterization. The film focuses on singing, (melo) drama, and humor. It is a light, short, fun film for when you aren't in the mood for intensity of any type.