Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Cats & Flowers

Today, I went out and braved the heat because my little darling, Marcelle, has been noticeably losing weight. She's the runt out of all our outdoor kitties and I guess she wasn't getting as much as the others. So, I went out, found her, and gave her some food away from the others so she could relax and eat. Boy, she sure enjoyed it! I must remember to do this every day so that she bulks up enough before winter. She needs to be able to butt in and get the food herself when I'm away at college.

While I was out there, watching her eat, I noticed how beautiful it was outside, so I decided to take some pictures. I wanted to share them with you guys :3

My marigolds. They're finally blooming, and hopefully are doing their job of warding away mosquitos. I got them in three colours because I wanted the gradient. I'm so glad they held the colour! I thought they were a random coloured breed of marigold, like the mini pansies I grew last year.

My outdoor cat, Marcelle. She loves to pose for pictures - every time I start snapping, I can hardly find the will to stop! Such a sweetheart. She's the cat I wish I could bring inside, because I would not want to lose such a sweet personality to something "normal" in nature - such as an eagle, hawk, or owl. The house we're about to move into doesn't have enough room for her, but I would like to think that when I have my own place I will bring her inside.

My brother's cat, Fluffie (yes, it's spelt with an 'IE'). By far the third most snuggly cat out of the outdoor bunch. Hardly ever does she look into the camera, lol.

My brother's cat, Flumpy. She's the second most snuggly cat out of the outdoor bunch, since she almost always makes a bee-line to me when she sees me. She's also the only long-haired kitten that came out of both litters that graced us last summer, and we have no idea why. That long fur is super silky soft, though.

It was the perfect day for taking pictures. I think those marigolds were working and doing their job since I wasn't bit while I was outside ^^

I'm going to miss these kitties while I'm at college. I really need to start taking pictures of these guys so I can put them in a photo album. I want to be able to look at them whenever I can. But I'm sure going to miss touching them and talking to them :'(

Sunday, June 26, 2016

My Thoughts on Sherlock Holmes

I've wanted to watch this for a few years, and since it's one of the few movies I haven't read a review for on Plugged In (a review website by Focus On the Family), I didn't know really what to expect. Outside of a relatively "normal" mystery in Victorian London.

To tell the truth, I was unsure about how much I'd like a Robert Downey Jr. Sherlock - but I was quickly proven wrong. There were several times that I couldn't help but laugh out loud. I think my absolute favourite part of the whole movie was when Sherlock jumped out of a window with an electrically-charged fork-thing in hand and ended up face-planting on the cobble-stone street below.

Now, when I said I was expecting a "normal" mystery, I meant something along the lines of: someone's murdered and they end up chasing the murderer all around the city.

Someone was murdered, several people in fact. But this is where it gets really weird.

More often than not, I forget how weird the Victorian era. The Victorian era was filled with strange beliefs and odd rebels who wished to push the boundaries of science. And that was the backbone of this Sherlock Holmes story.

The movie opens with Sherlock making his way down into a stone room under a large, multi-floored building, taking out bad guys as he goes. Soon, he comes upon a balcony looking over the room and peers down at a strange ritual taking place. Low, evil-sounding chanting fills the air as a young woman writhes on a stone table. The chanting's coming from the man in a long, ornate robe, a hood obscuring his face. As the chanting continues the young woman slowly lifts a knife, poised to thrust it into her own chest.

But before she can do that, Sherlock is there, taking out bad guys.

The chanting, robed bad guy is arrested and locked away - and it turns out that the scum-bag is a lord, Lord Blackwood in fact. And he's known in London's most prominent cult as the most evil individual to them, that he wields dark magic.

I wasn't exactly comfortable with how much of the cult was in the story, because it was borderline Satanist and there were pentagrams and rituals, etc. But I enjoyed the characters - I think Watson was my favourite. I love the Victorian era, even if London in that period was really depressing.

I really hope that the sequel is a little more normal, even if that normal is Sherlock and Watson chasing after Moriarty at night. I just don't like to watch movies that make me squirm in my seat. Though I did laugh...

Monday, June 20, 2016

My First Hub!

I never really thought I would "advertise" that I had written a HubPage, but I guess I just wanted to let you guys know that I'm active on HubPages now! I'm not quite sure what the theme of my pages will be, but my first Hub is about how to build a Hobbit character ^^

Here's the link to it: http://hubpages.com/literature/So-You-Want-to-Create-an-Original-Hobbit-Character

Friday, June 3, 2016

My Thoughts on The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (2005)

When I was little, it had to be when I was in either Grade 2 or 3, I came home to find that my father had gotten me the complete The Chronicles of Narnia box set. As frequently as he was able, he would sit me on his lap and read to me. I believe he managed to get to The Horse and His Boy before he stopped reading to me because my brother wouldn't sit still and life got in the way.

This film version of the movie is my favourite. Based on the second book of the series, I think it does very well with the story-line, though it has been a while since I've stopped to read it. Either way, I enjoy this movie, and wished that I had sat down to watch it again sooner. I used to watch it over and over when I was younger, but it seems I've not touched this one for quite a few years.

One thing that occurred to me while I was watching this was how the people of Narnia had no idea what a human was at first glance, but they seemed to remember that humans existed before. And humans did exist in Narnia prior to The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe - they were brought there by Aslan himself at the dawn of Narnia's creation. But they all seem to have left and/or died out, and the only known human population exists down in Calormen.

Calormen, to the south of Narnia, separated from Narnia by Archenland.
Honestly, it does bring up the question of why Aslan didn't just bring two brothers and two sisters up from Calormen, because they are sons of Adam and daughters of Eve, even if they don't live on Earth. But since I've been a Narnia fan for as I can remember, I know that Aslan probably brought Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy from Earth and to Narnia so he could bring both worlds together.

C.S. Lewis was very meticulous with the contents and themes of his stories.

What I love most about The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe is the fact that it's an allegory to Christ's crucifiction. In both the book and the film of The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, before Aslan opens up a portal to Earth through the stationary tsunami (or sky, as it was described in the book), this conversation happens:


' "You are too old, children," said Aslan, "and you must begin to come close to your own world now."

"It isn't Narnia, you know," sobbed Lucy. "It's you. We shan't meet you there. And how can we live, never meeting you?"

"But you shall meet me, dear one," said Aslan.

"Are - are you there too, Sir?" said Edmund.

"I am," said Aslan. "But there I have another name. "You must learn to know me by that name. This was the very reason why you were brought to Narnia, that by knowing me here for a little, you may know me better there." '


In this conversation that I decided to borrow from the fifth book of the Narnia series, it hints at the fact that Aslan is actually Jesus, and that he decided to take on the form of a lion in order to guide four children. When I say that The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe is an allegory to the crucifiction is because Aslan died on the stone table (which represents the cross), taking Edmund's place like Christ took on our sins so we could be forgiven ^u^

I love ever aspect of this movie, despite the fact that it shortened the story-line a bit because it was obvious that they didn't want to make the movie as long as, say, The Lord of the Rings. And if they added all the details in the movie probably wouldn't have been suitable for kids and the rating might have not been a mere "PG" - and might have inched closer to "PG-13". Or dare I say. "R" like the third extended Hobbit movie (though it probably wouldn't have made it that far since they probably still kept the gore low key)?

I chose to review this as a Period Drama because the Pevensie children originate from World War II London. Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy were evacuated from their home in London (I always assumed it was London since it was being bombed, though I could be wrong). The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe exists as a high fantasy that exists in both the WWII era and the medieval era.

As a parting note I would like to say: even after all these years, I still like how the phoenix was summoned during the battle. And I can't wait to watch and review Prince Caspian!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Period Drama Challenge April & May Tag Questions

1. What period dramas did you view in April & May?
I viewed The Princess Bride and Belle in April. Unfortunately, I didn't view anything in May. I was busy in May with trying to get a job and reading From This Moment and working on my poem collection project "Blue Jays & Rainy Days". I aim to fix that this month, before I'm caught up with moving to our new home :3 I also attempted to watch "To the Ends of the Earth" last month but couldn't even stomach the first episode. :P

2. Do you prefer to watch period dramas that have a happy ending or a bittersweet ending?
I prefer happy endings over bittersweet ones. I remember watching a Civil War era film some years ago about a Yankee soldier and a foal, and in the end the soldier died during a battle shortly after he and a soldier from the south worked to pull the foal out of the river in the middle of the battlefield. The Yankee soldier was the main character! He wasn't supposed to die!

3. What media forms do you prefer to use when watching period dramas (i.e. purchased DVDs, rented/borrowed DVDs, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu)?
I prefer to watch DVDs I've purchased and I use Netflix liberally, since ordering anything from the library takes too long and my town doesn't have a rental store anymore. I also don't have CraveTV, and Hulu's not available in Canada yet.

4. Which period drama character's wardrobe would you like to own?
I would have to say that I would love to either have Dr. Julia Ogden's (Murdoch Mysteries) wardrobe or Olivia King's (Road to Avonlea) wardrobe. They're both so spectacular! Even though I'd rather not have to wear a skirt.

5. What period dramas are you looking forward to viewing in June 2016?
I hope that I can watch either a few episodes or an entire season of Murdoch Mysteries. Thankfully, each season isn't very long, but if I want to have a life outside my computer, I might only be able to view a few episodes :/ I might also watch one of the Chronicles of Narnia movies, if I'm able to find them. I think either The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe or Prince Caspian may be in my family's massive black movie case...

I might also watch Tuck Everlasting, since I've been wanting to watch it again, but I have to borrow it from the library.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Book Review: From This Moment

From This Moment. Elizabeth Camden. 2016. Bethany House Publishers. Pages: 352. [Source: Netgalley/ebook from Bethany House Publishers' book review program]

Romulus White has tried for years to hire illustrator Stella West for his renowned scientific magazine. She is the missing piece he needs to propel his magazine to the forefront of the industry. But Stella abruptly quit the art world and moved to Boston with a single purpose: to solve the mysterious death of her beloved sister. Romulus, a man with connections to high society and every important power circle in the city, could be her most valuable ally.

Sparks fly the instant Stella and Romulus join forces, and Romulus soon realizes the strong-willed and charismatic Stella could disrupt his hard-won independence. Can they continue to help each other when their efforts draw the wrong kind of attention from the powers-that-be and put all they've worked for at risk?


When I requested From This Moment, I was drawn by the potential for a good mystery hinted at in the synopsis. And I wasn't disappointed. It was one of those times that I wished Bethany House Publishers was able to send me a physical copy of the book so I would be able to keep it after I reviewed it! It's definitely going to be a book I'm going to add to my collection, just so I can read it again sometime.

There were so many things I loved about this novel, from how real the characters were to the mystery and the thrill I get when we don't know who is friend or foe. Romulus was my favourite character by far. He was so 3D is was crazy. He's definitely the kind of man I would like to marry some day - not because he runs a magazine or because he's handsome. I'd marry him if I could because of his personality.

This novel was one wild ride, and was oh so realistic. I felt like I was there, in Victorian Boston, watching as the streets were dug up so the subway could be built. The dynamics between characters were as real and volatile as if they were happening in real life.

I was quite surprised at how rough the constabulary was with Stella. When two constables barged their way into Stella's boarding-house room, I nearly had to swallow my heart! I guess I was really surprised since I'm used to Murdoch Mysteries, a mystery series that takes place in Victorian Toronto, where a couple of the regular characters are constables at Stationhouse 4. Constables Higgins and Crabtree are actually gentlemen with whoever they interact with.

I guess I learn something new every day. I would definitely recommend this to anyone who would like to read it.

The Situation With Mt. Kilauea in Hawaii

It has been several days since Mt. Kilauea started erupting ferociously. I don't think I've ever seen it erupt as bad as it is now...