December 30, 2016

What doesn't kill you might actually send you to bed with a sore throat

Hi my friends. I had all these wonderful hopes of doing some sort of post just talking about "life" in general, and 2016. Well, with a day left to the year and me down with some sort of cold/flu/Idon'tevenknowwhat that I got from my brother (it was inevitable, I always catch his colds.), well....that isn't going to happen. ;)

I've actually spent quite a bit of yesterday and today editing my book (Princess and the Pea) so that's a good thing. Don't feel up to it now, though...
Henry: About time you got back to us...
I finished reading book two of the Ascendance Trilogy, The Runaway King, and ohhh did I love it. Sage is the best. THE BEST. And Fink? I need adoption papers so we can make this legal. I absolutely love that kid.
The Runaway King:

I also just finished reading North and South for the first time. It was wonderful. <3

North & South - Poster by PemberleyPond - #elizabethgaskell #fanart:
Why is Christmas over? It didn't stick around long enough this year (does it ever, though?). I feel personally affronted, Christmas. Which reminds me, watch this video. It's funny. :)

(Oh and pssst. The entire Newsies broadway tour is on youtube, limited time only, I would think. Check it out, but don't tell them I sent you. :P)

The ironic thing today is that I'm wearing a t shirt that says "Cowgirl tough". Well. I'm not feeling it today, but I'm glad my shirt believes in me.

The news that Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds died made me a little sad. I try not to get too wrapped up in actors and actresses (because you know...most of them are not fabulous role models :P)  but hearing that the woman who played one of my favorite heroines since childhood was just a little hard to wrap my mind around.
Who's excited for 2017? I am. 2016 was actually one of the happiest years for me, and the most exciting. But that doesn't mean I'm not ready for a new, clean year to begin afresh in. I hope and pray you all have a VERY Happy New Year and a wonderful 2017. *hugs*

And I hope the start to your year is a lot healthier than mine. ;)

Welllll, that's all I got for now, my friends. I'm going to crawl back to bed.
PS. Want to know how to wash a kitten? Your welcome.

December 25, 2016

Happy Christmas Day

Christmas Shopping Street:
This is a scheduled post,  my darling friends, since I intend to spend Christmas day offline, enjoying the beautiful holiday with my family. But here is my official greeting to you, my blog readers, friends, acquaintances—also known as, all you lovely people who read my rambling blog. :) Thank you all so much for your love, kindness, encouragement. Each of you are amazing and oh-so special to me. Love you all! I hope you have a splendid day celebrating and remembering the birth and sacrifice of our Savior and King, Jesus Christ.


May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. Luke 2:14

The Word gave life to everything that was created, & His life brought light to everyone. - John 1:4 // The Word Gave Life -!/single/214:

December 21, 2016

Merry Christmas, from the Hallmark Channel

So sometimes when I'm bored I resort to watching third rate Hallmark movies on youtube. And when it's Christmas time and I'm making Christmas cards for hours on my floor, I watch Christmas Hallmark movies.
I thought I'd share some of them with you all because everyone should have some cheesy romance movies in their life, right?

(I'm just kidding, don't watch these if you have something better to do.)
(Except for the last one. Watch the last one.)

(warning: sarcasm abounds)

A Cinderella Christmas

Ahh, this movie. I absolutely loved every minute of it, from the weird Aramaic (I think?) subtitles to the super annoying hero who forgets the most obvious things and is such a dork.
It's so romantic how he falls in love with her after knowing her for ten minutes, and then proceeds to forget everything about her!

 I mean, I understand that those masquerade masks really hinder hearing a person's voice. I suppose it's impossible to remember their eyes, despite the large eye holes in the mask. Of course, their face shape and height and personality can't be recalled, because remember she had a mask on.
And of course when you meet said girl three times (without the mask) I wouldn't expect you to remember her as your mystery-mask-girl. And when you meet her the fourth time (without the mask), you don't even remember her from the three times before!

-romantic sigh- Don't you just adore those people who plan to marry someone whom they can't even remember because of a party mask? TRUE LOVE, GUYS. <3

And oh yeah, I forgot how SAD it was when his heart was broken when "Cinderella" disappeared because it was midnight. I mean watch: 29:31.
I cried.

Watch this movie because you'll have so much fun groaning aloud at how horrible the plot and characters are! And guess what? The villain becomes magically nice at the end! Isn't that wonderful? Not to mention the obligatory scene where the hero takes off his shirt and the heroine is just so flabbergasted because WOW HE'S STRONG.

Just kidding. Skip that scene. Skip this movie.

Okay, this isn't a Christmas movie, but it was slightly funny and the hero was slightly less annoying and it's based after Pride and Prejudice. Only, Lizzy has just one sister (Jane) and there's no Mr. Collins. Because you know, leaving out the funniest characters is always a good idea.
Also, Lizzy is a dog show handler? And Mr. Darcy judges dogs??

I don't know. I guess someone thought it was a good idea.

Oh. There's a shirtless scene in this one too. Wonderful. If you want to skip it it starts around 59:54 and ends around 1:00:43.

Assuming you watch this movie, that is.

Which I totally recommend doing if you're bored and love weird adaptions of Pride and Prejudice.

PS. Mr. Darcy's sister is actually pretty funny.
PPS. Why are Hallmark heroes all male models?

Christmas in the Smokies

-turns off sarcasm-
Ehhh. Not much to say about this one. I liked the country setting, and the plot was pretty decent. It actually had the strongest Christian message (which isn't much, but still more than the others. :P) and the hero and heroine didn't even kiss which I thought was sweet and refreshing, and fitting in the context of this story. This is one I actually would slightly recommend watching. It was cute.

Just one thing...the hero is...gray? He looks like another male model. Again.

PS. No shirtless scenes. :)

Joking aside, I actually liked this one. It was pretty funny, not too lame, and it has Jack Thornton in it. Enough said. Watch it.

(Another character in the movie is named Jack. The real Jack is named Seth. Why not call him Jack and avoid confusion?!? We all know he's Jack.)

PS. No shirtless scenes!
PPS. Jack Thornton. <3
PPPS. Jack Thornton makes Christmas cookies and sings off-key songs.

This is actually a good movie. Like really. WATCH THIS MOVIE. There's like a dozen "copies" of it on youtube, if my link here goes dead, find it and watch it should. You just should.
The kids are hilarious, Jules is both relateable and funny and just plain fun, and the hero does not look like a male model. Haha. It's so nice having a nice, normal hero! (I mean, except that he's a prince. So he's a nice, normal prince.)
Basically, this is a Cinderella-esque Christmas movie that actually deserves the title (unlike the first movie I listed) and it's so sweet, so fun, and so enjoyable. Do watch it.

Merry Christmas!

December 16, 2016

Christmas-y Tag

First of all, thank you alllll so much for the lovely comments you've been leaving on my previous post concerning colllege. I won't say you've helped me all figure my life out (ha), but you've encouraged me a ton and made me smile with your kindness. THANK YOU. *hugs*

(If you haven't left a comment yet but want to, don't feel shy about doing so, I always love more comments on old posts. Even years old posts.)

So. I'm still kind of in rut. I have a ton of emails to reply to, and stories to edit (and a new plot bunny, muahaha), and of course, blog posts to write but my inspiration/motivation is at a zero. 

Maybe negative five. 

I'm sorry. *cries because I miss my blogging friends but I can't make myself write to them.*

But today, right now at 5:30 PM on this frosty, snowy evening (it's twenty degrees--Fahrenheit--and calling for another five to eight inches of snow? I think? #sendhelpwe'renotCanadians) I am determined to write a quick and fun blog post, with as little thought as possible. 

Let's see if we can start this snowball rolling.

(I stole this tag from everyone who was doing it, but it originally came from Lavender Spring.)

Does it snow where you live around Christmas? (If it doesn't, you have my sincere sympathy.) How much? Any special snowy Christmas stories?
UM yes. With more to follow, I'm told. Behold...

I love snow that sticks to all the trees. It makes me feel like we're in Narnia. :)

Do you get a real tree or a fake tree?
Quite real, thank you.

What is your favorite Christmas movie?
Definitely It's a Wonderful Life. Runners up? Eloise at Christmastime, White Christmas, A Christmas Carol, The Shop Around the Corner....

"Aaand... Dance by the light of the Moon" "You want the moon, Mary? Just say the word and I'll throw a lasso around her and pull her down":

Where in the world would you like to spend Christmas the most?
Um. One place??
Okay. I'm going to assume this question is referring to real places, and thus restrict myself to the real world. I don't know exactly where, but romantic, old-fashioned village in Europe would be....*dreamy sigh*. Someplace in Austria or Hungary or Germany or wherever.
You know, someplace inexpensive like this...

Christmas markets in Salzburg - one of the most beautiful experiences I've had in Europe. Simply stunning.:

Discovered this fairytale place on my first trip to Europe; great memories. Fussen, Germany (by RachaelMc on Flickr):

Stunning Views: Liseberg during Christmas, Gothenburg, Sweden:

Innsbruck, Austria. HERMOSISIMA CIUDAD Y PAISAJE!!! ♥                                                                                                                                                      Más:

You know, most days I hope to marry someone who's not very rich (money doesn't buy happiness. Louisa May Alcott taught me that.) but then there are days where traveling alllll over the world with my rich millionaire husband doesn't sound too bad.

What fictional/literary character would you most like to spend Christmas with?
I was going to -ahem- change this question and make it three characters, but then I realized. The obvious answer. I would spend Christmas with Betsy Ray. In Deep Valley. In the early 1900's.
It would be perfect. *thinks of all the fun we'd have sledding, skating, decorating the house, going to dances, making fudge, buying Christmas ornaments downtown, playing the piano....*

What is your favorite Christmas song?
Image result for one does not simply pick a favorite christmas song
While searching for this meme I stumbled upon more that made me laugh. Like this oneEspecially this one.

ONE of my favorite Christmas songs is "It Came Upon a Midnight Clear."

What is your favorite Christmas book/story (besides, ya know, The Story)?
The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe counts, right?

Which do you prefer: multi-colored lights or white lights? 
Both! White lights in my room, though. 

What time period/decade would you most like to spend Christmas in?
1940's. Or early 1900's-10's.

Which period drama has the best Christmas scene/episode?
Ahhh. Another hard one. Little Women IS a Christmas period drama. I adore it. Return to Cranford also has some very nice Chrismas-y scenes. Like this one. 

Okay. I can't rember. That's not a Christmas scene, but it was at their Christmas party, right? Or was it a different party....I can't keep track of their parties. 
Either way, it's a cute scene. So there.

Well, this post is....dreadfully long. Much longer than I anticipated. I apologize; I promise to try and learn the art of writing short blog posts. 
Fare thee well, and many joyous tidings of the season, dear friends!

December 8, 2016

Help! I'm Not Going to College!

If that post title didn't get your attention, I don't know what will. :P

But calm down. It's not that desperate. No, my parents are not locking me in the tower, refusing to let me continue my education. I'm not one of those girls in the movies who yearn to go to college, despite the shocked disapproval of friends and family.

Nope, I simply don't want to go. 

New trendy GIF/ Giphy. omg shocked karen gillan gasp focus world in a valley of violence. Let like/ repin/ follow @cutephonecases

I know several of my blog readers/friends are girls who have decided to forgo the traditional route of going to college immediately after high school. In fact, they've decided not to go at all. I know even more bloggers (not readers/friend heh heh)  who also have done that. So, I know I'm not alone in this venture.

I'm not against college. I certainly don't think other girls (or guys, for that matter) are wrong to go to college; yes, I've thought about going to college; yes, sometimes I wish I were going to college! But, for right now at least, I don't plan on going. (I have seriously thought about doing some college classes locally or online, but for right now, that's not in my immediate plans, either.)

The reason for this post is not to defend my stance or to argue college vs. no college or anything like that. But I really would love some advice. Some ideas. Some encouragement. If any of you non-college people out there have some of that, I would love to hear from you. (College-people are welcome, too, although you might not be able to relate as much. :P)

I've had a pretty tough time getting adjusted to life without the pressure of schoolwork. Rest assured, I haven't been sitting around twiddling my thumbs, but there have been moments where I sit and wonder what in the world I'm doing, because I feel entirely lost as to my "purpose" anymore.

I don't mean my purpose in living. I know what my real purpose is. It's to glorify my King and Savior, Jesus Christ. It's to obey Him and love Him, and hopefully help point some people toward Him.

But life also consists of work. Of making goals, of completing goals, of dreaming and trying and failing and trying again. Being in high school was simple. "Don't worry about anything past the next four years because you're relatively stuck until you finish your education anyways." And I did. Now I'm as free as an aquarium fish released into the ocean and I'm like....whaaat do I doooooo.
Image result for nemo gif now what

I actually told my mom just yesterday that not only did I really enjoy NaNoWriMo, I think it helped me define a goal. I want to finish my book. I want to publish it. And then, maybe publish another. 

It'll take a lot of work, a lot of time, and a lot of energy, but I want to do it. It's possible. And, Lord willing, I'm going to do it.

And that's only one of the ways I plan to keep myself busy. Just because I'm not going to college and am done with high school doesn't mean I can't still learn. There are so many books I want to read. Especially nonfiction.  I want to make myself sit down and LEARN those hard pieces of music on the piano. I want to cook more food. I want to try out for a play or musical. I want to get a job and earn some money so I can travel and visit blogging friends (haha) (no, seriously, though). I want to continue to study photography. I want to expand my horizons and try new things and learn not to be afraid of making mistakes, because that IS how we learn.

But in the meantime, I'm sure I'll still have days where I lament my lack of a social life (blogging IS my social life....) and wonder if maybe I should be going to college "like everybody else".

It's hard seeing most of the people your age going off on their exciting college adventure  (although I know most people say college is anything but fun after the first year or so haha) while you're stuck at home, like you have been ever since childhood. It's hard seeing others get to be independent, make new friends, and basically be part of a world you know nothing about.

But I know that deep down I don't want to go.  At least not yet. I like being different, and I like to be able to do what I love without spending a ton of money and moving away from home for four years (I'm kind of a contradiction, aren't I? First I say I'm stuck at home, then I say I don't want to leave home. See why I have such trouble? I'm hopeless). A lot of what I yearn to do does NOT require a college degree, and I've seen some people become very successful in those fields without one. It is possible to survive in life without going to college. Not going to college doesn't mean I'll be working at McDonald's.

very true.:

For all of you readers (I keep refraining from saying "girls", although I'm pretty sure 99% of my readers are females)  who didn't go to college I'd love to hear what your personal stories are.

What made you decide not to go to college? 
Did you ever feel purposeless after finishing high school? 
Was it hard seeing other people your age going off to college without you? 
Was it hard for friends or family to understand why you weren't going?
What were avenues you found to explore that helped you get out of your comfort zone and try new things, all while still living at home?
Do you have any encouraging words of wisdom??

Well. I'd better go now. I'm not sure if this post makes any sense, but if you're here, thank you for reading my ramblings. Life is amazing. I wouldn't want it all laid out like a map in front of me. I love the adventure and surprise that it brings, but I admit that I struggle with being content in all the situations God puts me in. 

I really like this song right now. I know some people probably think I won't get anywhere in life by not going to college, but that's okay. In the end, nothing matters more than trusting God no matter what, and I plan on doing that. Even when my life is nothing but a HUGE question mark. :D

Okay, I really must end this. Right now I should be making some tortilla wraps so we have food for dinner tonight.
(.....for tacos. We're not eating JUST tortillas. :P)

Please don't be afraid to spam my comment box, but keep it kind and encouraging, my friends. :)

December 3, 2016

Did ya miss me?

I'm baaaaaaccckkk.!

NaNoWriMo is over!

December is upon us!
this is the perfect example of what the change from November to December feels like

Everyone, exciting news: I survived National Novel Writing Month....and WON! 50,000 words!!!
Let me outline the month a little for you...

This was the beginning

This was the middle

This was the end

-brushes hands off- Well, that was easy. Suppose that's all you need or want to know, right?

Okay, okay, I'll go into a little more detail...

Well, it was quite an adventure, I'll tell you that. I'm happy I did it. I feel as if I learned a lot, especially about discipline when it concerns writing. ;) It took me over a year to write my first novel, and here I wrote 50,000 words in approximately 21 days. TWENTY ONE DAYS. Which is actually surprising considering I was behind for a couple weeks. I wrote pretty much every day, except for Sundays and a few "life happens" the weekend we had to put one of our dogs down. :(
I didn't write at allll that weekend....

All that being said, I didn't finish my book. Yup. I still have more writing to do. I'm actually rather okay with that....I don't have to say goodbye to my characters! I feel as if the last two weeks I was getting the most insight into them and their story....I'm looking forward to jumping back into their world. ;)

I officially "won" on the 29th. Well, I thought I did. Story time!

Around 5:00 pm,  I wrote out a particular (very sad) scene that I had been dreading. I've gone back and forth over whether This Plot Device should happen, but I finally decided the story wouldn't be the same if I changed it. So I made myself write it. And cried.

 Wiping away tears, I checked my word count, found myself at 50,000, sent an excited email to my NaNo buddy, Miss March, and promptly plugged my novel into the NaNo validator. Well, it turns out Google Docs word count is different from NaNo's, and I was about 70 words short. (how...?) 

I couldn't make up the deficiency at that moment because I had to go with my mom on some errands. Word of advice, friends. Don't drive when you just destroyed your heroine's heart. I mean, we were fine, but....ahem. I had to constantly make sure I was keeping my attention on the road and not mulling over my fictional problems. :P

That night, we came back and I whipped out a little scene I might not even use in the final draft of the novel, just so I could validate the novel and declare myself a winner. :D (And so my email to Miss March wasn't a lie, after all! Yay!)

...The End. That's my story. *takes a bow*

I want to talk about the romance in my novel. Maaahh worrrd. <3 My main character and her romantic interest make me smile so much; I just sit there like Rob with his ducklings.

It's actually been a little difficult to write, however. One character is not a Christian, and crafting how the relationship can progress without the other "throwing away" her standards (because, you know, 2 Corinthians 6:14) can be a tricky. I want the romance to be believable and sweet, not ridiculous and sappy. :P Here's a (rather long) snippet:

As I searched the shelves, I heard the back door open and Isaac stomp his feet. “The sleigh’s hooked up," he said.
“That’s fine, Isaac, thanks,” replied Daddy.
I found the twine I was looking for and went back into the kitchen. “Here you go, mother.” 
I set the twine on the counter next to Mother, and glanced up at Isaac as I passed him. He was gazing at me in a way that made my heart stop, and I suddenly wished more than anything that he was coming to the dance.
As I went to gather my and Mother’s coats, I noticed Daddy glaring at Isaac in such a way that told me he had seen Isaac’s admiration of me. Isaac, for once, was unaware of Daddy’s gaze. He was leaning against the wall, eyes down, except for the moments every few minutes when he’d glance up to look at me again.
I smiled secretly to myself. Nothing quite made a girl feel giddy than knowing a man was finding her attractive. I was twenty-four years old—I suppose I shouldn’t feel so silly and immature about it—but I couldn’t help the tingle it sent down to my toes.
Pete came in, sniffing the air, following by Grandpa, who was fussing with his tie. “This durned thing doesn’t want to work with me,” he said. I laughed and stepped over to do it for him.
Pete hovered close to Mother. “It sure smells good, Mom.”
“Thank you,” she said, distractedly wrapping the twine around the pot.
“Can we eat first thing there?” he asked.
“Pete, you know we don’t eat till after the dancing,” I said.
“I’m sure there’ll be something you can snack on, Son,” said Daddy, pulling his suit jacket on.
“Thanks, Rosie,” Grandpa said as I finished. “You know, you sure do look pretty, Rosie. Don’t you think so, Isaac?” He looked expectantly at him.
Isaac tore his eyes off me to meet Grandpa’s gaze, but he glanced nervously at Daddy, who was watching Isaac as he buttoned his jacket.
“Yeah, she looks very nice,” he said, bowing his head.
It wasn’t exactly the compliment of the century, but I understood the difficulty he had in even saying that much under my Daddy’s sharp gaze.  ~Rose and Isaac (working title)

(Notice to any internet plagiarists: Please do not steal, this is my original work. :P)

Grandpa is one of my favorite characters. HE IS SO FUN. He's friendly and outspoken but a really good judge of character and absolutely adorable. He kind of "ships" my heroine and the hero (he shipped couples before it was cool), and it's just so darn cute. 

One more thing. My novel is set during Christmastime, and it was SO fun to write the Christmas scenes. I can't wait to write more. Because guess what? IT'S CHRISTMASTIME!
Aristocrator [food | breakfast | coffee | foodporn | foodgasm | tasty | yummy | cakes | cafe]:

-throws snowflakes into the air-

Ahh, my favorite holiday ever. I have no words to express how I love this magical time of the year. :)

You probably noticed my new design for the holidays. What thinks you? It's quite different from anything I've ever done, but I love the Christmas-y feel and the professional look....something's still not QUITE right to me, but I'm not messing with it anymore. ;) (It was HARD to make)

(And oh, Naomi, though I tried very hard not to copy your blog's new style, I must say I was greatly inspired by your new design. Hope you don't mind. ;)) (Everyone, check it out, because it's stunning.)

I actually have a bunch of Christmas cards I should be working on mailing out to people. -sigh- I suppose this post is long enough. But never fear. Now that I've returned I hope to stay. I've really missed blogging. It feels so great to be back. :)

Merry December, everyone!! 
Decorate your trees, listen to your favorite Christmas music, and enjoy the season. 
It only comes around once a year. :) *hugs*

PS. If you'd like to know my new favorite song and have your heart broken, watch this gorgeous Robin+Marian video.....sob.

PPS. Yes, that is my real face on the sidebar there. GASP. I'm not sure if I'll be putting my face on the internet regularly, but for now you can kind of see what I look like. :P (Unless you're a creepy internet stalker. If so, please go away and never return.)
(And no, I don't dress like that everyday. I've actually only worn that hat one time, though I like it a lot.)